Stephen Janney, a retired resident of Cherokee, has had a long and useful career in material affairs, and is especially honored as an ex-officer who led his men in many a campaign and battle of the great civil war. He is an old citizen of the state of Kansas, and has been identified with its industrial and civic affairs in a highly successful and creditable manner.
Born in Clinton county, Ohio, July 1, 1832, he was just getting well established in a trade and means of livelihood when the war came on. He enlisted from his native county on August 2, 1862, in Company C, Seventy-ninth Ohio Infantry, under Colonel Kennett and Lieutenant Colonel Doan. From the camp at Denison, Ohio, they were ordered south to repel General Kirby Smith's raid into Kentucky, and were opposed to General Bragg's forces for some time. Their operations were mainly in Kentucky and Tennessee in different courses of the general campaign. In the spring of 1864 they went to Chickamauga, and after the critical battles in that vicinity the regiment was assigned to the Twentieth Corps under Hooker at Chattanooga and joined in Sherman's Atlanta campaign, where he was one hundred days under fire. Mr. Janney was also in General Benjamin Harrison's brigade for a time, when the latter had command of the First Brigade, Third Division, of the Twentieth Corps. Among the battles of this campaign in which he participated were Resaca, Kenesaw Mountain, New Hope Church, Burnt Hickory, Peach Tree Creek. From Atlanta they went on the famous march to the sea, thence up through the Carolinas, and toward the end of the campaign, while leading a foraging squad, Mr. Janney was captured by the Rebels, being first lieutenant at that time. He was taken prisoner on March 5, 1865, was held three weeks at Salisbury, North Carolina, then taken to Richmond and kept in Libby prison a week, and the day before the fall of that city was sent down the James river to the parole camp, and thence went to Annapolis. He got a leave of absence for thirty days, and while on his way home heard of the assassination of Lincoln. He returned to Washington in time to participate in the grand review. His record of service was as first sergeant for eight months, then promoted to second lieutenant in 1863, and in 1864 he was promoted to first lieutenant, and for three months commanded his company, and his date of final discharge was May 15, 1865.
Mr. Janney was a son of Joseph and Elizabeth (Russell) Janney. The father was of English Quaker stock, from Loudoun county, Virginia, the family having freed their slaves many years before the war and being anti-slavery people, while the Russells, of near Leesburg, Virginia, were slaveholders, and members of the family were in the Confederate service. Both the parents died before the war, the mother at fifty-seven and the father at sixty-three, the latter having followed the occupation of farmer and adhering to the religious doctrines of the Friends. They were the parents of eleven children, four sons and seven daughters. One other son besides Stephen was a soldier. George, a captain in a colored regiment, had yellow fever while in Key West, Florida, and died in 1866 as a result of the disease.
Mr. Janney was reared in Ohio and received a good education in the schools. He followed the trade of gunsmith for a time, and later clerked in a general store. After the war he lived in Mahaska county, Iowa, near New Sharon, until he came to Kansas. He was married in Ohio, March 28, 1862, to Lydia White, who was born at Canton, Indiana, but was later taken to Highland county, Ohio, where she was reared and educated. She was a daughter of Benjamin and Levina (Coffin) White, both of prominent Quaker connections. The mother died in Iroquois county, Illinois, at the age of seventy-two and the father at the age of sixty-three. There were four children in the White family, and one son, Henry W. White, is a resident of Smith Center, Kansas. Mr. and Mrs. Janney have three children: Charles O. is a mail clerk running out of St. Louis; Myrtle L. lives in Cherokee county; Mrs. Rosa Morrison lives in Butler county, Kansas. Two children died in childhood. Mr. and Mrs. Janney are members of the Friends' church. They have one of the comfortable and modern homes of Cherokee, a well furnished and tastily arranged residence, noted for its good cheer and wide range of hospitality.Pages 533-535 from A Twentieth century history and biographical record of Crawford County, Kansas, by Home Authors; Illustrated. Published by Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, IL : 1905. 656 p. ill. Transcribed by Carolyn Ward, in November, 2003.
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