Kansas History and Heritage Project-Anderson County Biographies

Anderson County Biographies
"Portrait and Biographical Record of Southeastern Kansas"
Biographical Publishing Co., Chicago, 1894

JOHN A. MANN, one of the substantial farmers of Anderson County, residing on section 8, Westphalia Township, was born in Hocking County, Ohio, December 11, 1837, and is of English descent. His grandfather, Arthur Mann, a native of England, came to the United States and married Nancy Thompson. Locating in Virginia, he the re spent his remaining days. He reared a family of several sons, namely: Arthur, Henry, Walter, William, Oliver, John and James T. The last-named is the father of our subject. He was born in Virginia, July 17, 1807, and in 1828 emigrated to Hocking County, Ohio, where he became acquainted with and married Caroline Warthman, who was born in the Buckeye State May 28, 1809.

James T. Mann was a bricklayer, plasterer and paper-hanger by trade, and also owned a farm in Hocking County. In 1857 he removed to Van Wert County, Ohio, and purchased land, which he cultivated in connection with work at his trades. There he continued to make his home until his death. He passed away March 25, 1890, while visiting in Kansas, and was buried in Central City Cemetery. His wife died two years previous in Van Wert County. In early life he was a Whig in politics, but afterward became a stalwart Republican. For about sixty years himself and wife were faithful and active members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

In the parental family were eight children. Sarah was born September 8, 1833; she married Abraham Bigham and died in Van Wert County, Ohio, leaving two sons, John W. and William O. Mathias was born October 14, 1835, and died February 26, 1837. John A. is the next younger. Mary E., who was born April 22, 1840, is the wife of Charles W. Carpenter, of Van Wert County, Ohio, by whom she has two children, Jesse B. and M. B. McPherson. James O. was born May 10, 1842, enlisted in Company A, Ninety-ninth Ohio Infantry, and died April 18, 1863, at Camp Dennison, Ohio. Arthur was born August 9, 1844, and died on the 14th of September, 1849. Christina, who was born August 11, 1847, died September 23, 1849. Frances was born May 31, 1850, and died January 5, 1861.

No event of special importance occurred during the childhood and youth of our subject, which were quietly passed on the home farm. After attaining his majority, he worked as a farm hand for two years, and then rented land for a year. Subsequently he purchased forty acres, and followed farming in his own interest until coming to Kansas in August, 1870. In November of the same year he settled upon his present farm, purchasing one hundred and sixty acres of land, which was then unimproved, but which, through his untiring zeal and efficient labors, has become a highly improved and fertile tract. The boundaries of his farm have been extended until it now comprises four hundred and seventy acres of rich land. Great neatness characterizes the place. The buildings are all in good repair, the fences well kept, the hedges well trimmed, and good walks are around his buildings. This well deserves to be mentioned among the model farms of Anderson County. In connection with its cultivation, Mr. Mann is also extensively engaged in raising fine stock.

Our subject has been twice married. In Van Wert County, Ohio, January 21, 1861, he wedded Sarah J. Todd, a native of that county, and a daughter of William and Mary (Hire) Todd. She died in Kansas July 20, 1873, leaving three children: Mary Lillie, wife of Frank S. Mitchell, of Garnett, Kan.; Ashley E., who is living near Garnett; and Cary L., at home. On the 9th of March, 1874, Mr. Mann married Mrs. Elizabeth (Aldridge) Starr, who was born in Washington County, Mo., and is a daughter of James and Nancy J. (Patterson) Aldridge. They have four children: Pliny C, Emma Florence, Walter S. and Edwin C. In politics Mr. Mann is a Republican, has served as County Commissioner for one term, Township Treasurer two terms, and as a member of the School Board. For many years he has been a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The honorable, upright life which he has lived has gained him universal confidence and won him the good will of all.

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