KIMBLE P. SNYDER. - Upon the long roll of names which have conferred honor upon the legal profession is that of Judge Kimble P. Snyder, a lawyer of Kansas City, Kansas, who has rendered efficient service in various official capacities, serving as city attorney and city counselor of Kansas City, Kansas, and as probate judge of Wyandotte county, Kansas. He was born on a farm in Richland county, Illinois, February 5, 1849, of German, Dutch and Scotch ancestry.
Henry Snyder, his father, was born in Kentucky, on January 26, 1826. Migrating to Illinois, he settled on a farm in Richland county and afterward laid out and established the city of Noble, Illinois. He first engaged in tilling the soil, and then became interested in the mercantile business, and was later postmaster and also was employed as station agent for the O. & M. Railway. He was a Whig in politics until the Republican party was organized and then became one of its staunchest adherents. He married Harriet Bell, who was born January 23, 1829, in Ohio, and of their four children two died in infancy and two are living: Kimble Porter, the subject of this brief biographical sketch, and Morris Brady Snyder, a contractor of Kansas City, Kansas. The father died in 1856, and the mother married again, about 1859, to John Fenis, and they became the parents of two children, Homer Fenis, of Sumner, Illinois, a contractor, and Frank Fenis, a farmer who lives on the old farm on which the Judge was born. Mrs. (Snyder) Fenis died in 1901, at the age of seventy-two.
Judge Snyder gleaned his early education during the winter months in a log school house and at night by the fire light from an old fashioned log fire place, working in the summer on the farm. He was thus prepared for the hardships he afterwards had to pass through. When a lad of fourteen years of age he enlisted in Company C, One Hundred and Thirty-sixth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, in the war of the Rebellion, and went to the front as the youngest soldier in his regiment. He served in his company, performing all the duties imposed on him, until the expiration of his term of enlistment, October 22, 1864, and on the 4th of February, 1865, he again entered the army and served until the close of the war, being honorably discharged September 18, 1865.
Returning to the peaceful pursuits of farm life, he worked on the farm in summer, and in a broom factory in winter, for a time. He then took up telegraphy, and became an operator in Chicago; then took a course of study at the State Normal University at Normal, Illinois; taught school for three years in McLean county, Illinois. He then read law in the office of ex-Governor Fifer of Illinois, and took the law course in the law department of the Illinois Wesleyan University at Bloomington, that state, from which he was graduated in 1879. After an exhaustive written examination in the supreme court of Illinois in the same year he was admitted to the bar, and began the practice of his profession at Lawrenceville, Illinois, that same fall. In the following year, 1880, he was elected state's attorney for a term of four years on the Republican ticket in a Democratic county; was re-elected in 1884, being the only Republican elected in Lawrence county, Illinois; but resigned on January 1, 1888, a year before the expiration of his tenure in office, so as to move west. On January 3, 1888, he was united in marriage to Miss Jersie E. Halfacre, and they immediately came to Kansas City, Kansas, to make their future home. He has lived here ever since and up to eight years ago took an active and prominent part in the city, state and national politics. In 1893 he was made city attorney under mayor Nathaniel Barnes, and two years later was appointed city counselor under mayor George J. Twiss. He was elected probate judge of Wyandotte county, Kansas, and re-elected in 1900, and served two terms from January 9, 1899 to January 11, 1903.
He is affiliated with a number of fraternal organizations, in a number of which he has held responsible offices. He is Past Commander of Burnsides Post, Grand Army of the Republic, of Kansas City, Kansas; was made a Master Mason in Arrowsmith, Illinois, in 1877, and is now a member of Wyandotte Lodge No. 3, Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of Kansas City, Kansas; of Harmony Chapter, Royal Arch Masons, No. 35, Sumner, Illinois; in 1885 he was made a Knight Templar of Gorin Commandery at Olney, Illinois, is now a member of Ivanhoe Commandery of Kansas City, Kansas, of which he is Past Eminent Commander; and is a member of the Knights and Ladies of Security and Triple Tie, two fraternal insurance societies of this city. He is one of the founders of the Bethany Hospital, one of the charitable institutions of the Methodist Episcopal church, and has served as its secretary, trustee, and is now its legal advisor. He has been a member of the Washington Avenue Methodist church for a long time, and for fifteen years one of its trustees. Mr. Snyder is recognized as one of our best citizens, and as a thoroughly reliable lawyer. He always has a smile, a handshake and kind word for every one with whom he comes in contact, and his honesty and fair dealing have made him hosts of friends and brought him a large and lucrative law practice. He has filled every position of trust to which he has been selected with careful, conscientious skill with credit to himself, and with the universal approval of his constituents.
As stated before, Judge Snyder married January 3, 1888, Miss Jersie E. Halfacre, a native of Lawrence county, Illinois, who was born on July 10, 1864. She received her preliminary education in the schools of her native state, and later graduated from Old Chautauqua, New York. She is a daughter of Jacob and Margaret (Rowland) Halfacre, the father being a native of Pennsylvania, who came to Lawrence county, Illinois, and there became a farmer and extensive stock raiser. The father died in 1872. Mrs. Jacob Halfacre was born in New York state in 1836, and is still living, being a resident of Princeton, Indiana. Mrs. Snyder has one sister and two brothers, as follows: Mrs. Mary Kruckman of Wilmot, Wisconsin; Wiley Halfacre, a farmer in Missouri; and Richard Halfacre, a mine operator of Carson City, Nevada. Mrs. Snyder is a thorough Christian woman, being an untiring church and Sunday school worker, and is loved by all who know her. She is a devoted wife and helpmate to the Judge, and though they have no children of their own, they are bringing up a little girl who came to their home when she was four years old, whom they call Alma Frey Snyder. Their home is at 626 Everette avenue, Kansas City, Kansas, where their friends always receive a cordial welcome.
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