Kansas History and Heritage Project- Marshall County

Marshall County Biographies


Thomas H. Lewis, a well-known and substantial farmer and stockman of Franklin township, this county, was born on a pioneer farm in that township and has lived there all his life. He was born on September 18, 1871, son of William and Maria Lewis, pioneers of Marshall county, further mention of whom is made elsewhere in this volume, and grew to manhood on the old homestead farm, receiving his schooling in the school in the Brooks district. As a lad he used to herd cattle on the plains and helped to break the sod, retaining distinct recollections of the old oxen used on the farm. He remained an assistant to his father in the labors of improving and developing the home place until be was twenty-one years of age, when he rented a tract of land and began farming on his own account. In 1907 he bought a quarter of a section of land in section 35, Franklin township, from his mother-in-law and has since made his home on that place, bringing the same up to a high state of development. The place was well improved when he bought it. but he has made numerous valuable improvements to the same and now has one of the best-kept farms in that part of the county.

In 1903 Thomas H. Lewis was united in marriage to Lena Tangeman, who was born on a pioneer farm in Center township, this county, June 5, 1877. daughter of John and Dora (Duever) Tangeman, natives of Germany, who became pioneers of Marshall county, where the former spent his last days and where the latter is still living. John Tangeman was born in the province of Hanover on June 22, 1835, and was trained to the trade of a blacksmith, at which he worked in the army. In 1866 he married Dora Duever, who was also born in Hanover, May 31, 1837, and that same year he and his wife came to the United States, the vessel on which they came over being fourteen days in making the passage. They located at Chicago, where Mr. Tangeman worked at his trade until 1871, when he came to Kansas and homesteaded a tract of forty acres in section 4 of Center township and there established his home in a dug-out, in which humble abode a son was presently born. Later, he built a ten-by-twelve house of cottonwood lumber and in that little house two other children were born. During the grasshopper visitations his small attempts at farming were thwarted by the voracious pests, which ate every growing thing on the place. His first crop was five or six acres of corn, for which he received twelve and a half cents a bushel; a similar price being also all he could get for a few potatoes he also was able to raise. At that time Indians still were quite numerous in this part of the state and the family often was annoyed by the lazy aboriginals coming to the house and begging for something to eat. Presently, however, better times set in and Mr. Tangeman's affairs began to prosper, he after awhile becoming the owner of a quarter of a section of land, on which he did well and where he spent his last days, his death occurring on February 2, 1906. His widow is still living and now makes her home with her children. There were seven of these children, of whom Mrs. Lewis was the sixth in order of birth., the others being as follow: William, deceased; Ernest, a merchant at the village of Home; G. J., a farmer in the vicinity of Winifred; August, a merchant; Mrs. Amelia Reinhardt, wife of a hardware merchant at Home, and Henrietta, deceased.

To Mr. and Mrs. Lewis two children have been born, Ruth, born on November 7, 1906, and Russell C., December 22, 1915. The Lewises have a pleasant home in Franklin township and take a proper interest in the general social activities of that neighborhood. Mr. Lewis is a Democrat and takes an earnest interest in local political affairs, but has never been a seeker after public office.

Return to Marshall Co. KHHP

This website created July 4, 2011 by Sheryl McClure.
2011 Kansas History and Heritage Project