The Dawes family sprung from good old English stock; the ancestors came early to America and established the family name from which the subject of this sketch owes his origin. Isaac B. Dawes was born in eastern Ohio, in the year 1827, his parents having removed there when that state was considered the "far west" and when they were in danger of being scalped by the savages or devoured by the wild beasts that roamed the forests. The Dawes family were all patriots and served their country with unflinching courage. His father served in the war of 1812.
Our subject was one of the honored veterans of the Civil war, whose devotion to his country was tested by service on the battlefield. He was a member of the 137th Indiana, Company D, under Captain James Sewell and Colonel E.J. Robinson, regimental commander. Mr. Dawes enlisted in May, 1861, serving until he was mustered out at the close of the rebellion. He received the appointment of orderly sergeant at the beginning of his enlistment. His men were not well drilled recruits, having had neither time nor opportunity for military tactics, and in a time when veterans were needed, but they were called into active duty and filled the places of two old regiments on guard duty where they were given the opportunity to demonstrate their courage and valor.
After being honorably mustered out, Mr. Dawes returned to his family and resumed farming until 1878, when he, with his family emigrated to Kansas and settled on their present farm, when the silence of nature was unbroken by the locomotive's shrill whistle, but "to those who wait, all things come," and in a brief time they were in the midst of a busy traffic of a great railroad system.
Mr. Dawes was married in 1850, to Julia Maxwell, and three years later removed to Indiana, where their seven children except the eldest were born. Of this number, five are living, viz: Samuel F., the eldest son, resides with his father and is a successful, intelligent farmer and stock raiser. The second son, the Honorable F.B. Dawes, is a Leavenworth attorney and ex-attorney general of the state of Kansas. He established for himself a national reputation and is one of the most gifted orators in the state. The numerous positions of trust to which he has been called have been successfully filled and his popularity is well deserved. His success is not due to an inherited legacy or adventurous circumstances, but to his unbending will, application and sterling integrity. The daughters, three in number, are estimable and intelligent women. The eldest is Mrs. M.E. King, of Clay county, near Idana. Luella is her father's housekeeper. She has been a teacher of Cloud and Clay counties for a period of eight years. Mrs. Iva B. Mock, the youngest daughter, resides on a farm in Oklahoma.
Politically, Mr. Dawes is a staunch Republican, and during President Harrison's administration was appointed postmaster at Miltonvale, holding that office from 1889 to 1893. Miss Luella Dawes was his deputy and made an efficient clerk. Mr. Dawes has held various township offices. He was elected justice of the peace of Starr township and held the same office in Indiana. Mr. Dawes emigrated to Kansas with limited means but a stout heart and hewed his way through many obstacles in his path; with a will he put his shoulder to the wheel and it turned.
He erected a small house one and a half stories high, the most pretentious in the neighborhood, and proceeded to otherwise improve the homestead. He with his son, keeps a herd of about sixty head of graded Shorthorn cattle and raises hogs extensively. He has built up by degrees a comfortable and pleasant home, a well improved and equipped farm, where he may spend the remainder of his days in quiet comfort and in the enjoyment of peace and plenty.
Mr. Dawes is recognized by the community as a thoroughly true and upright man, courteous to everybody, a helpful citizen and revered by all. He is the youngest and only living child of a family of eleven children, having buried a sister, the last surviving member except himself, in 1900. They all lived to maturity and reared families. Mrs. Dawes, who was deceased in July, 1898, was a woman possessed of a gentle, sympathetic nature, which drew around her a large circle of friends and acquaintances, and her demise was universally mourned.
Miss Dawes is actively engaged in the profitable and interesting pursuit of poultry raising from an incubator which has a capacity for one hundred and twenty eggs. There is special attraction watching and waiting for the hatching day of the incubator and witness it turn out one hundred or more downy little chickens, and see them develop into hens or the lusty, crowing chanticleers. She expects as a season's output, the brood to number four or five hundred. Miss Dawes and her brother are chicken fanciers and received first prize at the Salina fair in 1902, on their pure bred Plymouth Rock fowls, bred from the famous Conger strain, which is their specialty. In addition to this branch of poultry raising, they take great pride in their pure White Holland turkeys and Mammoth Pekin ducks, which are fine specimens; the latter carry on their conversation much after the fashion of plain every day ducklings. The barnyard filled with the fine Plymouth Rock chickens, beautiful White Holland turkeys and gabbling ducks, was an interesting sight to the author at feeding time.
The Dawes family are worthy, active members and supporters of the Christian church of Miltonvale, of which Mr. Dawes is an elder.
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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