One of the pioneers of 1867 is James Clithero, now an esteemed citizen of Concordia. He settled in Elk township and homesteaded land adjoining the site of the present town of Ames. He remained through the Indian uprisings and was among the settlers concentrated at the claim of A.A. Bradford, where they joined their forces to protect each other, and while inmates of the little fort slept within, some one of the settlers was detailed to stand guard on the outside. "Jerry" was a colored man, whom Mr. Bradford had with him all through the war, and who followed his master on to the frontier. "Jerry" was a character true to his race and Mr. Clithero relates an incident of the darkey's valor.
He was selected from among the number to stand guard one night, and as he marched up and down the line with vigilant eye, ready to give the signal of alarm by firing his gun, the settlers, their wives and children peacefully slumbered on. "Jerry" had performed his duty faithfully, but when morning dawned it was discovered the gun with which he had paraded all during the long hours of the night was unloaded, not a trace of ammunition in the formidable weapon that had served "Jerry," who was unconscious of the situation, just as well, inasmuch as the Indians did not appear.
Mr. Clithero is a native of Lancashire, England, born in 1841. When a small boy he came with his parents to America and settled in Wisconsin, where his father had secured land ten years earlier and when that country was thinly settled. His parents both died in Wisconsin.
In 1866 Mr. Clithero was married to Miss Nannie McEckron, a sister of the Honorable B.H. McEckron. Their family consists of three sons, all of whom are married and prosperous men. Mr. and Mrs. Clithero lost two daughters, aged thirteen and nineteen. Mr. Clithero is practically retired from business, but has been engaged in general merchandising in Concordia until recently. One of the sons is a member of the firm of Boyd & Clithero, grocers, of Concordia. G.G. Clithero is in the railway postal service and runs between Colorado Springs and Kansas City. A.B., the youngest son, is a farmer near Rice, Cloud county.
Mr. Clithero is an old veteran of the Civil war and enjoys the distinction of having served almost four years, or all through the war. He enlisted in Company C, Fifty-seventh Illinois Volunteer Infantry, September 21, 1861, for three years; and when the term expired, re-enlisted for one year. He received a gunshot wound on Sunday, the first day's battle at Shiloh, which disabled him for six months ere he could shoulder arms again. His company was under Colonel S.D. Baldwin and Captain W.S. Swan, both of Chicago.
He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic and actively interested in the association. Mr. Clithero, was identified with Clyde for many years, as his homestead was near that city, and was prominent in the organization of the Presbyterian church there, which, after several years of struggle, is a monument of pride to its originators, and contains the only pipe organ in the county. Mr. Clithero and Mr. McEckron hauled logs to be sawed for the construction of the church. Mr. Clithero has been a citizen of Concordia thirteen years, where he and his family enjoy a comfortable home.
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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