John Stauffer

HON. JOHN STAUFFER. On a farm in section 19, township 33, range 24, in Crawford township, lives ex-Probate Judge John Stauffer, for 34 years one of the leading spirits of the county, and a gentleman to whom all citizens unite in according a very high reputation. For four years he served the county faithfully and efficiently as chief officer of the Probate Court; he has also served as trustee of his township and held other offices. He was born in Montgomery County, Ohio, near Dayton, in 1834, and located on his present farm July 25, 1870.

Judge John Stauffer is a son of John and Elizabeth (Kelly) Stauffer, both parents being natives of the "Keystone State", the father, of Lancaster County, and the mother, of Dauphin County. With their respective families they, early in childhood, removed to Ohio, where they married, and where the mother died in young womanhood. In 1850 the father moved to Carroll County, Indiana, where he married again and continued to reside until his death. To his first wife were born three sons, of whom Judge Stauffer is the second in order of birth. The eldest was Samuel, who died in Indiana in January, 1903. The youngest, Henry K., is now a resident of the "Hoosier State." To the second marriage was born a daughter, now Mrs. Naomi Nelson, of Caney, Kansas.

In the common schools of his native State, Judge Stauffer received the basis of an education to which an unusually observant mind has added until men refer to him as a "well-read man." He is a thorough student of men and nature, and a most pleasing conversationalist. He has been a farmer the greater part of his life, although in his younger years he followed the carpenter's trade for a period. He remained in Indiana until matters had adjusted themselves after the great Civil War, when he turned his face toward the undeveloped West. The land on which he located in Cherokee County was virgin soil. Not a tree nor shrub, nor any improvement seen upon it to-day but is the work of his hand. As the years have passed, the farm has responded to his intelligent efforts, and it now presents a most pleasing appearance in its well kept fields and commodious buildings. As before stated Judge Stauffer has always taken a keen interest in affairs about him. He aided in the organization of Crawford, his home township, of which he has been a trustee at different times, aggregating about 15 years. Prior to the rise of the Reform party, Judge Stauffer had always been a stanch Republican, casting his first vote for the "Pathfinder", Gen. John C. Fremont. But in the late "eighties", he was among those who felt that relief could come in no other way than in the reformation of party lines, and he therefore became a Populist. His well known strength in the county brought him the nomination for the Probate judgeship in 1891, and again in 1893 he helped to carry the banner of that party to victory.

Judge Stauffer has always been a willing and liberal supporter of religious and educational institutions. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church and has been an Odd Fellow for the past 40 years, having been a charter member of the first lodge of that order at Columbus, and being instrumental in organizing the second one.

Judge Stauffer was married on April 8, 1856, his bride, Elizabeth King, being his present companion. Mrs. Stauffer was born in Carroll County, Indiana, September 21, 1831, and is a daughter of James and Jane (McElhaney) King. She is one of three children born to her mother, who died young. The father married a second time, and is also deceased. Eight children have come to the home of Judge and Mrs. Stauffer, as follows: Jennie; Harriet; Eva; one, unnamed, who died in infancy; James K.; Samuel K.; Thaddeus; and Millie. James K., a farmer of Crawford township, married Lulu Crane, a daughter of A. W. Crane, formerly of Cherokee County, but now of Missouri; her children are,—Lulu, Mollie, Samuel, Maggie and Imogene. Samuel K, who resides on the home farm in a separate house, married Addie Medlin, daughter of Littleton Medlin, who resides with them. Their children are,—John, Juanita, Paul and Dorothy. Thaddeus is a clerk in the Roberts store in Columbus; he married Maggie Thomas, and has one child,—Fleta. Millie is the wife of T. W. Thomason, former county clerk of Cherokee County, but now in the mining business at Galena; her children are,—Thaddeus and Madeline.


History of Cherokee County Kansas and its representative citizens, ed. & comp. by Nathaniel Thompson Allison, 1904, transcribed by Carolyn Ward, instructor from USD 508, Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas, 6-27-97


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Tom & Carolyn Ward
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