JOHN BICKNELL, the founder of the city of Bicknell, Indiana, and one of the old settlers of Labette county, Kansas, is a man of varied and interesting experiences. He is an entertaining conversationalist, and his friends are eager listeners to his reminiscences of pioneer days. Mr. Bicknell was born in 1823, in Knox county, Indiana, where he lived until his removal to Labette county, Kansas, in 1879. His parents, were Mumfred and Nancy (Ashby) Bicknell.
Mumfred Bicknell was born in Kentucky in 1796. He moved to Knox county, Indiana, where he died in 1853. He married Nancy Ashby, a native of Mercer county, Kentucky, who was born in 1798. She also died in Knox county, Indiana, in 1876. They reared the following offspring: James and Christiana, deceased; John, the subject of this sketch; Samuel and Josephus, of Knox county, Indiana; Alfred, of Labette county; Mumfred, deceased; Austin, of Liberal, Missouri; and Hibbard, Polly (Goodman), David and William, deceased.
John Bicknell began his career as a farmer, and followed that occupation until 1871, when, in company with a Mr. Slater, he engaged in mercantile business. He was the third man to set up a place of business in Bicknell, Indiana. He carried on a general store in that town until 1878, and in 1879 moved to Labette county, Kansas, and settled on the farm where he now resides. He has followed the occupation of a farmer since that time, and is well informed in all agricultural matters. His farm presents a neat and attractive appearance, and speaks well for its owner's thrift and good management.
Mr. Bicknell was united in marriage with Eliza A. Chancelor, who was born in Mercer county, Kentucky, in 1823. Her father, John Chancelor, was also a native of that county, having been born in 1800. He died fifty-six years later. John Chancelor's wife, who was Polly Thomas, was also a native of Mercer county, and was born in 1802; she died in Knox county, Indiana, in 1877. Their children were: Eliza A., Isaac, Will, John, Elias, and James, all deceased.
Munford, the oldest son of John Bicknell, served in the Civil War, and was wounded at the battle of Perryville, Kentucky. He now lives in Knox county, Indiana, and his daughter, Cora (Moss), lives in Labette county; Mrs. Moss has two children, Walter and Floyd. Mumfred Bicknell's other children are named: Clarence, Roy and Sailie, - the first two being the offspring of his first marriage. John Bicknell's other children are: Mary (Goff), of Labette county, the mother of Lillie (Davis), of Oklahoma, whose children are Ralph and May; Brighton, who has two children, Floy and Evaline; Nancy (Reel), of Labette county, who has one child named Denver; John, of Knox county, Indiana, who has three children, Homer, Ottie and Flossie; Caroline (Copley), of Labette county, who has two children, Silvia and Roy; Lovisia E. (Chambers), of Knox county, Indiana, who has two children, Bertie and Carrie; William, of Labette county; Benoni, deceased, whose children are Edgar and Raymond; and Florence (Robertson), of Liberal, Missouri, whose children are, Blanche, Cleo and Bernice.
Mr. Bicknell is a member of the Republican party. He has been an active member of the Baptist church for the past sixty years. He is surrounded by a large circle of friends.
Transcribed from History of Labette County, Kansas and its Representative Citizens, ed. & comp. by Hon. Nelson Case. Pub. by Biographical Publishing Co., Chicago, Ill. 1901
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