The Reverend Mr. Bushnell, pastor of the First Presbyterian church of Concordia, is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio, born in 1836. His father was the Reverend Horace Bushnell, Sr., a native of Connecticut, born in 1802, who was also a Presbyterian minister for eighteen years and then became a Congregationalist. He located in Cincinnati about 1830 and pursued his theological studies in Lane Seminary after having had a training in the Manual Labor School of Whitestown, New York. After coming to Cincinnati Reverend Bushnell, Sr., taught school while studying at the seminary, and was licensed to preach about the same time this institution was organized as a theological school. At the expiration of two years' study he began his ministerial career and remained in the city of Cincinnati for fifty years or until his death in 1883. He organized the little society known as "Storrs Congregational church," and ministered to this congregation in connection with city missionary work for many years, and was well known throughout the city.
The Bushnell ancestors came to Boston about 1636, and subsequently settled in Connecticut. Francis Bushnell was one of the colonists who founded the town of Guilford, now quite a city; then follows an issue through five generations to Jason Bushnell, who was the grandfather of Reverend Horace Bushnell, Jr., and like many of the family lived to an extreme old age, several of the Bushnells almost reaching the century mark. He was a man noted for his industry and integrity and was a soldier of the Revolution. Mr. Bushnell's mother was Caroline (Hastings) Bushnell, who was of English origin; her ancestry came to America about 1636 and, like the Bushnells, settled in Connecticut. John Howard Payne, the author of "Home, Sweet Home," was a relative of Mrs. Bushnell. She was born in 1801 and died in 1886.
Mr. Bushnell was educated in part at Oberlin College, but in 1859 graduated at Farmer's College, now absorbed in the Cincinnati University. His theological studies were pursued in Lane Seminary, where he graduated in 1862, and engaged in his pastoral work. He was ordained in 1863 at Madison, Indiana. Reverend Bushnell enlisted in the United States service in 1862 and was one of the one hundred thousand "squirrel hunters" sent out by Ohio to repel the invasion of General Bragg, but about nine days afterward they were relieved and he was permitted to return to his field of labor. He received his discharge about ten years ago. During the war he labored at different times in the Christian commission. This was a volunteer movement, without pay, for the bodies and souls of the soldiers. Those who engaged in it had their needful expenses paid, but no more. They supplemented the work of chaplains and nurses, and hesitated at nothing that could help or sustain the man who carried the gun.
Reverend Bushnell's first pastorate was in the village of Allensville, Indiana. Two years later he went to St. Louis Crossing, Indiana, and thence to Southport, Indiana, where he had charge of the congregation for ten years. He came to Minneapolis, Kansas, in the spring of 1877, where he labored for five years, and in January, 1882, came to Concordia, where he has since had charge of the First Presbyterian church. He was married in 1866 to Mrs. Verissa Bonham, the widow of Aaron E. Bonham, of Elizabethtown, Ohio. By her former marriage there were three children, John L., a resident of Columbus, Indiana; Everett O., of Columbus, Indiana, and Kitty M., widow of Judge W.L. Harvey, of Chandler, Oklahoma.
Mrs. Bushnell is the daughter of Hiram and Sarah (Fisher) Olmstead, natives of Massachusetts. The Olmsteads came to West Meredith, New York, where Mrs. Bushnell was born, and later moved to Indiana. Her father was a teacher and under him she received her principal education. To Mr. and Mrs. Bushnell four children have been born, three of whom lived to maturity. Carrie H., wife of Dr. F.A. Butterfield, of Lawrence, Michigan, a physician of considerable prominence. She was a teacher for a number of years and held positions at Salina, Jewell City, Topeka and Concordia. They have two children, Claire and Horace. Alice F., deceased wife of F.C. Perkins, of Durango, Colorado, an attorney and registrar of land office. He was formerly a well-known educator in Beloit and Concordia, but removed to Colorado with the hope of benefiting Mrs. Perkins' health. She was a young woman of many natural personal charms, well known and beloved in the city of Concordia. She died in Durango, Colorado, in February 1898, leaving three children, viz: Harold Bushnell, Lewis Mayne and Dorothy Alice. Herbert H., a resident of Aspen, Colorado, is the manager of the Times, a morning daily paper. He finished a classical course from Wabash College, Indiana, read law for a time, but later turned his attention to newspaper work.
Mr. Bushnell is a man of orthodox views and not only enjoys the esteem and confidence of his congregation, but of the entire community wherein he labors.
Transcribed from E.F. Hollibaugh's Biographical history of Cloud County, Kansas biographies of representative citizens. Illustrated with portraits of prominent people, cuts of homes, stock, etc. [n.p., 1903] 919p. illus., ports. 28 cm.
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