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William Akers Bowles

William Akers Bowles was born on 2 Nov 1818 in Barren County, the third child born to John and Celia (Sally) Bowles. He married Lucinda Sarah Clark on 26 Jan 1841. Lucinda was born 3 Mar 1825 to Samuel and Nancy Gatewood (Pace) Clark.

In 1857, William purchased 122 acres of land on Fallen Timber Creek in what is now Metcalfe County KY from his father. Tax records for 1857 and 1860 both show William with 140 acres, so he must have purchased additional acres from someone.

William served as administrator for both his father's estate and that of his brother Austin. This is interesting, given that his brother Elzy was the elder and was living nearby.

Little more is known about William and Lucinda Bowles themselves. We know that William died 30 Mar 1867. William Henry Clark states that Lucinda died in 1868, but that is incorrect for she is listed in the 1870 Metcalfe county census. Lucinda died 18 Feb 1872 according to a descendent. On 27 Apr 1872, her son, Samuel, gave his power of attorney to E. Witty to represent him as administrator in the settlement of Lucinda's estate. Samuel was in Jewell County KS at the time. According to Clark, William is buried "at the old Bowles place" which is most likely the Nunnally Cemetery located off Wilber Glass Road in Metcalfe County. That cemetery has only two tombstones for anyone named Bowles, Austin and his wife Nancy; but I suspect that many of the others may be there without stones.

Although William Henry Clark only credits them with nine, William and Lucinda had 13 children, seven boys and six girls. The 1850 Barren Co KY census lists William A. Bowles, age 30, born in KY. In the household are Lucinda S. [Clark], 24, born in TN, Samuel C. (8, KY), Henry J. (5, KY), Joseph C. (3, KY), Walter J. (2, KY), Marcella T. (5 months, KY). The 1860 Metcalfe Co KY census lists William A. Bowles, age 41, a farmer with real estate valued at $1400 and personal property valued at $1000. Listed in the household are Lucinda S. [Clark] (35), Samuel C. (18), Henry J. (16), Joseph C. (14), Walter J. (12), Marcilles F. (10), Lucinda C. (8), Sarah E. (7), Josephine (6), James M. (3), and Nancy E.L.C.C. (1).


Their first born was Samuel C. Bowles. According to History of the State of Kansas, edited by William G. Cutler, Sam Bowles was born 15 Apr 1842. In 1865 he moved to Chicago IL where he lived until 1867. He next moved to Nebraska by way of Iowa where he married Louisa Marshall in Pottawatomie County on 3 May 1868. He and his wife then moved to Jewell County KS in 1870.

According to an 1878 History of Jewell County KS, "The first settlers [in Richmond Township, Jewell County,] were Sam. C. Bowles, T. Bowles, G.I. Nelson, Peter Kearns, Peter Tanner, Nels. Cedeburg, John O'Roak, Chris. Ahrens, John W. McRoberts, Sr., John W. McRoberts, Jr., W.R. Scott, Sam. J. Sweet, Alfred Wilde and Urban Wilde, all of whom settled here early in the spring of 1870, some of them coming in February and the remainder in April."

Shortly after his arrival in Jewell County, Sam Bowles was selected a a county commissioner. In 1876 he built the Commercial Hotel of Mankato KS.

According to the 1878 Jewell County history, "The last Indian raid made in Jewell county, was on the 10th day of May, 1870, when a band of Indians, supposed to be Cheyennes, made a descent on Bowles' settlement on White Rock, and stole two spans of horses -- one from Sam. C. Bowles and the other from Peter Tanner. Bowles made a gallant fight for his, firing thirteen shots at the Indians, who in turn fired six gun shots and seven arrows at Mr. Bowles. None of the shots, however, took effect, as Sam, escaped with his scalp lock in the accustomed place, and no dead Indians were found lying around loose. They got his team, however, which he never recovered. Peter Tanner was more lucky. Towards night of the same day, while out looking for them, Peter found his horses in a ravine, on the north side of White Rock, where they had been hid by the Indians.

"A funny Incident connected with the Indian visit to Bowles, goes to prove that their object was more for plunder than blood. One old Indian who appeared to be the leader, stepping up close to Mr. Bowles, fired his pistol in the direction of Bowles, the shot striking the ground a few feet from him. Bowles is accused of making the remark: "You d----d old scoundrel; give me that pistol, and I'll make a better shot than that." The Indian, however, did not comply with Bowles' request, whereupon Sam made for the house, met his wife who was coming to him with his weapons, and fired the ineffectual shots above noted."

According to Cutler's History of the State of Kansas, "Mankato has reached a population of over 600, and is steadily increasing in business and wealth. The town has grown more rapidly since the completion of the Central Branch, three years ago, than for any equal period previous. It was incorporated as a city of the third class, April 22, 1880. The first city officers were: B. J. Thompson, Mayor; A. Evans, City Clerk; L. P. Vance, Treasurer; J. W. McRoberts, Police Judge; M. Stone, C. Angevine, L. M. Butts, S. C. Bowles and G. S. Bishop, Councilmen."

The 1900 census in Jewell County indicates that they had no children. By 1910 Sam and Louise had moved to Plainview in Hale County, Texas. Anna Lucille Bowles indicated that Sam Bowles died in Florida, and another descendent of his father gives Sam's date of death as 5 Dec 1918. There was a S. C. Bowles who died in Polk County, Florida in 1918, and this may be him. We have no indication of when or where Louise died.

Henry J. Bowles was the second-born of William and Lucinda Bowles. He was born 10 Nov 1843. William Henry Clark identifies him as Jefferson Bowles and says that he died in 1853, but since he is listed in the 1860 census, Clark was mistaken about the death date. We do know that Henry J. Bowles was dead by 1867 because he is not mentioned in his father's will, although all of the other siblings are mentioned. A descendent of Augustus Bowles, his brother, gives a death date of 26 May 1862 for Henry. According to Clark, he is buried "at the old Bowles place."

Joseph C. Bowles was born 10 Aug 1846, William and Lucinda's third son. Clark identified him as Crittenden, but Anna Lucille Bowles wrote that his name was Christopher. She also indicated that he died in Texas. Another Bowles descendent indicates that his middle name may have been Clark, and that he died on 20 Jan 1872.

Walter J. Bowles was next. He was born 25 Mar 1848 in Barren County KY. I believe he is the one that Clark identifies as "Te" Bowles. The reason for this is that Walter is listed in the 1880 Jewell County KS census, and I believe is mentioned above along with Sam Bowles as one of the first settlers of Richmond Township in Jewell County KS. On 6 Nov 1877 he was elected as one of the constables of Richland Township in Jewell County.

He does not appear to have been married. In 1880 he is listed as a farmer, but living with the family of Alfred and Lodema Wilde. He doesn't seem to be related to them. That is the last mention I have found for him. Anna Lucille Bowles wrote that he died in Arkansas.

Marcella F. Bowles was the first daughter born to William and Lucinda Bowles. She was born 2 Nov 1849. She last appears at home in the 1860 census, but is not listed in the Metcalfe County marriage records after that. Since she was not still at home with her mother in 1870, she may have moved west with relatives and married there. Anna Lucille Bowles wrote that Marcella died in Iowa. Another Bowles descendent gives her death date as 2 Mar 1894.

Lucinda C. "Kate" Bowles was next; born 24 Jun 1851, she married Samuel Rainey West, son of Eleazer and Rebecca Jane (McBride) West. According to information posted on Rootsweb, Samuel was born 12 Oct 1851 in Indiana, and died 26 Apr 1940 in Grady OK. Samuel and Kate are listed in the 1880 Jewell County KS census along with two daughters, Myrtle (3) and Ellen (1). Also listed with the family is Kate's younger brother, Augustus (13). By 1900, Samuel and Kate were living in Grant County OK. Living with them were their six children: Myrtle (b. Dec 1876), Ellen (b. Oct 1878), Delia (b. Sep 1881), Clarence (b. Jun 1884), Maud (b. May 1886), and Nellie (b. May 1892). In 1900 Myrtle was teaching in a public school. [1900 Federal Census, Grant County OK, Salt Fork Township: S.D.#219, E.D.#76, Sheet #7, Line #28.] Then in 1910 they appear in the Grady County OK census [1910 Federal Census: Oklahoma, Grady County, Hillsboro Township, ED 93, page 14A]. Delia, Clarence, and Nellie are still at home with Samuel and Kate. In 1920 Samuel, Lucinda, Ella, and Dela were still living in Hillsboro along with a nephew, George West, and a niece, Edith West. Lucinda apparently died prior to the 1930 census which shows Samuel with daughters Ella and Dela, and a grandson, Theodore Dustin, who was a son of Maude West and Lou Dustin. The Dustin family appears in the 1920 Grady County census with Lou and Maude and seven children: Theodore, Archie, Nellie Mae, Raymond, Gladys, Mildred, and Donald.

Sarah Ellen Bowles, William and Lucinda's next daughter, was born 2 Jan 1853 in Barren County KY. She appears in the 1860 census with her parents. In 1870, when she was 17, she appeared in the census next to Alexander Nunnally. The two of them are listed with his parents, Willis and Mary Nunnally. According to Metcalfe County marriage records, they were married on 22 Feb 1870. Alexander and Sarah Ellen next appear in the 1880 Jewell County KS census, living next door to Samuel and Kate West. Alexander and Sarah continued to live in Jewell County until their deaths. By the 1920 census, Alexander was listed as the proprieter of a feed barn. He died in 1932, she died in 1945. They are buried in the Mount Hope Cemetery in Center Township.

According to the 1900 census, Sarah had one child who was deceased. No other information has been found about this child.

Josephine Bowles, born 2 Sep 1854, is listed in 1870 Metcalfe County KY with her mother. She moved to Kansas with her siblings, and married Edgar A. Dickson in Jewell County on 19 Dec 1872. They had three daughters: Minnie, Pearl, and Lena who were living with Josephine in Denver in the 1900 census. Anna Lucille Bowles wrote that Josephine was buried in Colorado.

James Marion Bowles was next. He was born 27 Aug 1856 in that part of Barren County that was to become Metcalfe County KY. According to his obituary, "In the spring of 1872 at the age of 16 years, he with his orphaned brothers and sisters came to Kansas and settled in a dug-out one mile west of what is known as Reubens on the White Rock creek. Later he moved to Jewell City, Kansas, where he met and married his life companion, Mary A. Leydig." Mary was born in Iowa on 30 Sep 1859 to Levi and Rachel (Sturtz) Leydig according to her daughter, Anna Lucille Bowles.

James "first entered the business world as a tinner for the McCarthy Hardward Company of Mankato, Kansas, later coming to Formosa [KS] where he engaged in the hardware business for himself."

James and Mary Ann had twelve children who will be identified below. Mary Ann died on 29 Jun 1925; James lived until 20 Aug 1936. They are buried in the Mount Hope Cemetery at Mankato.

Much of the information listed below for their children comes from a handwritten document written by their daughter, Anna Lucille Bowles.

  1. Hattie Marion Bowles, b. Oct 1879; married to Elmer Stransky on 15 Oct 1902
  2. Claudia May Bowles, b. May 1881; married to Jeffrey (Jessie?) Sturtevant on 13 Jul 1910
  3. Walter Clark Bowles, b. 24 Jan 1883; d. 26 Jul 1884
  4. Goldia Alice Bowles, b. Dec 1884; married to Raldo Hale
  5. Anna Lucille Bowles, b. Jan 1887; married to Harold A. Gribble; married to Peter Jesch
  6. Kathryn Lucinda Bowles, b. Dec 1887; married to Oliver M. Brandt
  7. Mary Elizabeth Bowles, b. Sep 1889; married to (?) Cross
  8. James Augustus Bowles, b. 27 Nov 1892; d. 7 Jun 1970; married to Metha J. Buck
  9. Samuel Levi Bowles, b. Sep 1894
  10. William McKinley Bowles, b. 17 Jan 1897; d. 24 May 1979; married to Laura C. Buck
  11. Louise Ellen Bowles, b. Jul 1897; married to John Magnusson Jr.
  12. Leo Funston Bowles, b. 1 Nov 1899; d. 4 May 1975; married to Florence Dunn

Two more daughters were born to William and Lucinda Bowles: Nancy on 7 Sep 1858, and Henrietta 12 Jul 1862. Anna Lucille Bowles indicated that Nancy was buried in Kentucky, and that Henrietta was buried in Colorado. Another Bowles descendent indicates that Nancy died on 15 Jul 1883, and Henrietta died in 1917.

William Alexander Bowles was born 12 Dec 1863. He must have traveled to Kansas with his siblings for he is buried there in the Montana Cemetery in Jewell County. He died on 28 Sep 1878 before his fifteenth birthday.

Augustus Roany Bowles was the last child born to William and Lucinda Bowles. He was born 9 Dec 1866 when his parents were in their forties. Augustus was living with his sister Kate and her husband Samuel West in Jewell County KS in 1880. He was thirteen at the time. Augustus married a lady named Adella Pim who was born 16 Dec 1867 in Iowa according to a descendent. They had five children. The family is listed in the 1900 census for Grant County OK. Then they moved to Norman OK by 1910.

Their children were

  1. Edna C. Bowles, b. 27 Sep 1892
  2. William Augustus Bowles, b. 8 Nov 1894; married Leora Grotts on 18 Jan 1914; d. 23 Aug 1987
  3. Lena C. Bowles, b. 16 Sep 1895
  4. Reba L. Bowles, b. 4 Jul 1897; d. 20 Jul 1972
  5. Roy Clifford Bowles, b. abt 1901

Effort has been made to eliminate errors, but their absence is not guaranteed. This document is copyright 2007 by Charles Hartley. Permission is hereby granted to individuals seeking family history information to copy the contents of this document for their personal use. It may not be sold, either separately or as part of a collection, without the written permission of the copyright holder; nor may it be placed at any other location on the internet without said written permission.

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