The History of the Early Settlement of Norton County, Kansas

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where she resides at this time.

John Sorrick came here in 1876; he was very eccentric in many respects and was supposed by some to be insane.  He and his wife had trouble and separated in 1888; they had five children.  While on a visit to his sister at Lyle, in Decatur county, September 15, 1891 he killed his daughter and committed suicide; they were hastily, and a report circulated falsely, buried without a coroner's inquest.  A fanciful rumor was afloat that he had been seen around his brother's place in Almena township during 1893, all of which were spookish dreams.

Mrs. Sorrick lives in Iowa has one of the children with her, the others are in Missouri.

schesser.JPG (38636 bytes) John A. Schesser was born in Holstein, Germany, near Hamburg, November 11, 1842.  He came with his father to Canada when fourteen years of age and settled near Berlin, in Waterloo county, where he attended school to complete his education.  His means being limited he was compelled to seek employment for his spare hours, and after looking around found employment in a pump factory, where he was required to work all his spare time to pay his board and tuition.  Before his education had been completed he joined the Wesleyan Methodist church, and being liked by all those who knew him, was induced to study theology.  He followed this course for a few years, preaching a part of the time, being frequently chosen as a substitute to fill appointments. He was assigned to an appointment at Andlievill [?] in the county of Huron at which place he bought a tract of land, of nine acres, for $200; but being far gone with consumption, and being advised by all the physicians to go west sold his land again.

In the town of Gray he became acquainted with a young lady, the daughter of Valentine Riter, a thrifty and well to do farmer, who still lives in Ontario County, Canada and is now 84 years of age.  On July 3, 1870 they were married and on the 18th of the same month started for Kansas.  On July 29 they arrived at Leavenworth, Kansas with but very little money.  He soon got an appointment in Lawrence at which place he preached one year.  In 1873 he left that church and joined the Presbyterian church where he soon received an appointment.

At the Presbytery which was held in Atchison the question arose who will go to Norton county to preach to the scattered Presbyterians through that county offering a salary of $800 a year.  No one was willing to go for a long time.  He accepted and received his commission from the board of home missions for $800 per year and all the people felt able to give him besides.  He left his family in Pottawatomie county and started with a team and lumber wagon for the west; and after ten or twelve days traveling arrived at the then small village of Norton.  The first sermon he preached was in Phillipsburg; the second sermon was preached to a

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