Comanche-co has had eleven different county treasurers during the 42 years of the county's history. Of that number six were republicans, four were democrats and one Alliance. Three each served only one term of two years, and six served two terms each. One served, in all, a total of 11 years, or five terms, but two or more years intervened between the two term periods. Under the Kansas law, county treasurers and sheriffs, unlike other county officers, cannot legally serve more than two consecutive terms or four years, in succession, but may be re-elected for another term after two years time has intervened. That is why there have been more of these two officials than other county officers, such as county attorney, probate judge and clerk of the district court where the same person is often retained in office for several terms. The following list shows who were the successful candidates for the office of county treasurer at the various elections in this county:
At the first election held in Comanche-co., there were two candidates for the office of county treasurer - A. Darroch, republican, and J. J. Walters, democrat. Darroch won by a large majority, the vote being 1041 to 526. At the November election in the same year, Mr. Darroch was re-elected, again defeating Mr. Walters. There were three candidates then - Mr. Darroch, Mr. Walters and Jesse Cook, the latter being the Greenback candidate. The vote stood - Darroch, 568; Walters, 487, and Cook, 385. Mr. Darroch died in Oklahoma about 20 years ago. Mr. Walters and Mr. Cook moved from the county during the early 90s.
H. O. HOLDERBY
The general election in November, 1887, resulted in the election of H. O. Holderby, democrat, for county treasurer. He defeated Fred H. Hurlbut, republican, by a vote of 596 to 585. Two years later, Mr. Holderby was re-elected, again defeating Mr. Hurlbut, the vote at that time being - Holderby, 407; Hurlbut, 273. Mr. Holderby is still a resident of this county. For several years he has made Protection his home. Mr. Hurlbut moved from this county to Denver, Colo., during the latter 80s.
J. B. MANSFIELD
The Alliance candidate for county treasurer was elected at the general election in this county in 1891. There were two candidates - J. B. Mansfield, Alliance, and T. P. Ruble, republican. The vote stood - Mansfield, 324; Ruble 202. Mr. Mansfield served but one term as treasurer. During the early 90s he moved to Oklahoma, where he still lives. Mr. Ruble also moved from the county about the same time.
W. V. JACKSON
The election in 1893 resulted in the selection of W. V. Jackson, republican, to the office of county treasurer. His opponent was R. A. Strain, who was nominated by the Peoples Party. The vote stood - Jackson, 187; Strain, 149. Two years later, Mr. Jackson was re-elected, defeating Oscar Webb, the Peoples Party candidate by a vote of 206 to 82. Mr. Jackson is still a resident of this county. He is now serving his 4th term as Comanche-co.'s representative in the state legislature. Mr. Webb died at his home near Protection on March 21, 1921.
H. E. CRUMMER
In 1897, H. E. Crummer, republican, was the successful candidate for county treasurer, defeating Geo. E. Beeley, the candidate of the Populist party, by a vote of 182 to 154. Mr. Crummer served but one term. About 20 years ago he moved from this county to Rockford, Ill., where he still lives. Mr. Beeley moved from this county to Enid, Okla., and died in that city a few years ago.
J. M. GRIFFITH
At the general election in 1899, there were two candidates for county treasurer - J. M. Griffith, the Fusion candidate, and A. H. Murray, republican. Mr. Griffith won by a vote of 220 to 203. Mr. Griffith and Mr. Murray were again the candidates at the general election in 1902, when Mr. Griffith was again elected, the vote being - Griffith, 210; Murray, 199. In 1908, Mr. Griffith was again the candidate for county treasurer, and was elected, defeating Kenneth Gilbert, the republican candidate, by a vote of 369 to 284. Two years later, Mr. Griffith was re-elected, there being no opposing candidate. Again in 1916, Mr. Griffith was the successful candidate, defeating Frank Betzer, republican, and Melvin Marley, socialist. The vote stood - Griffith, 1051; Betzer, 659; Marley, 141. Mr. Griffith was again a candidate in 1918, but was defeated by Miss Annie Cline, republican, by a vote of 828 to 692. It will thus be seen that Mr. Griffith has served this county as treasurer for a total of eleven years. He also served for several years as probate judge, but that will be reported in another article. Mr. Gilbert is now a resident of Clayton, Mo., and Mr. Betzer and Mr. Griffith of this city.
A. H. MURRAY
Allie H. Murray, republican, was the successful candidate for county treasurer in 1904, defeating W. T. Holland, democrat, by a vote 288 to 143. In 1906, Mr. Murray had no opposition, and was again elected, thus serving two terms. Mr. Murray was again a candidate in 1912, but at that time was defeated by H. W Chapman. Mr. Murray died at his home in Protection-tp. on March 24, 1922.
H. W. CHAPMAN
As stated, Mr. Chapman, who was the democratic nominee, was successful in the race for county treasurer in 1912. The vote that year stood - Chapman, 626; Murray, 444; Marley, socialist, 69. In 1914, Mr. Chapman was re-elected, defeating J. H. Davis, socialist, by a vote of 1174 to 167. Mr. Chapman died on June 17, 1924.
MISS ANNIE CLINE
At the general election in 1918, Miss Annie Cline, who was the republican candidate for county treasurer, defeated J. M. Griffith, the vote being - Cline, 828, Griffith, 692. Miss Cline served just one term. She is still resident of this county, devoting her time at present to teaching in one of our rural schools.
At the general elections in 1920 and 1922, Walter W. Ferrin , republican was the only candidate for county treasurer, hence he was elected each time, thus serving two terms. He is still a resident of this city, being now employed as book-keeper in the Allderdice Store.
MRS. ANNA POWELL
At the general election in 1921, there were two candidates for county treasurer - Mrs. Anna Powell, democrat, and R. F. Burt, republican. Mrs. Powell was elected by a vote of 998 to 694. Mrs. Powell was re-elected last fall without opposition. Mr. Burt is now manager of the Farmers Elevator in Viola, Kans.
Prior to 1900, an election was held each year, at which time about half of the county officers were chosen and the remainder the next year. Beginning with the general election of 1902, all of the county officers have been elected at the same time - at the general election in November of each even year. While county treasurers are elected in November, their term of office does not begin until October of the following year.
About Comanche-co.'s Twelve Sheriffs
The Western Star, March 4, 1927.
Comanche County in the State Legislature
A Few Facts About the Men Who Have Represented This County in Topeka
The Western Star, January 7, 1927.
Comanche County Officers, 1885 - 2007
Thanks to Shirley Brier for finding, transcribing and contributing the above news article to this web site!
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