Sumner County Trails To The Past

Sumner County
News

The Wichita City Eagle., November 09, 1876
Wichita, Kan. 1872-1883
A DESTRUCTIVE WHIRLWIND SWEEPS OVER WELLINGTON, KANSAS.
Body of an Unknown Murdered Man Found in Salt Creek.

Wellington, Kan., Nov. 2, 1876.
We have been enjoying the fine weather of Indian summer for several days, until yesterday, when a fine rain ended our summer, and now overcoats are in demand.
A whirlwind gyrated through the county during the rain of yesterday morning, doing considerable injury. It struck the house of Mr. William Gregson, in Avon township, tearing it all to pieces, killing Mr. Gregson, and severely, if not fatally, injuring his wife. Mr. Gregson was seventy-three years old, and one of the most respected citizens of our county.
After leaving Gregson’s the Storm passed in a northwesterly direction, just east of this village, striking a new barn, 32x20, on the farm of J. G. Woods, tearing it into shreds, and lifted Mr. J. L. Herrick’s' chimney entirely off his house, whirled it round a few times and deposited on the ground.
On Thursday the 26th ult., a young man, out hunting ducks in the vicinity of Salt City, in this county, discovered the body of a man floating in Salt creek, about a mile west of town. The body had evidently been in the water several days. It had no clothing on except a shirt and a pair of socks. Two gunshot wounds were found in the back of the head, which evidently caused the person’s death,
A wagon track was traced from the road to the creek where the body was found and back to the road again. The remains were those of a man five feet ten inches in height, with dark brown hair and light mustache. The man had undoubtedly been murdered and his body thrown into the creek, but who he was,and who was his murderer will, perhaps, remain unknown till the “sea gives up its dead.”

The Wichita City Eagle., October 28, 1880
Wichita, Kan. 1872-1883
Wellington was thoroughly surprised some three weeks ago, when it was discovered that Frank Chapman had decamped, leaving his creditors in the lurch for some $18,000. Another tremor of excitement and regret ran through the city on Friday, October 1st, when it was learned that Joe Mason had committed suicide. But the greatest of all surprises came Wednesday evening of last week, when Chapman was brought back and lodged in jail. He was accompanied by B. H. Wise, and J. H. Wise, his former book-keeper.
The story of Chapman’s life, as gathered by a Press reporter, runs as follows : In 1873, Chapman, whose real name is Francis M. Wise, quarreled with one William Newton over the sale of pair of mule and and finally shot him through the heart. His father, H. H. Wise, who was lodged in jail with him last week, gave him aid with which he escaped to McMinnville, Tennessee. Here he engaged in school teaching in Warren county tor seven months under the name of Wm. Hall.
In the spring of 1874 he escaped to Kansas. He filed on a quarter section of land five mites south of Wellington under the name of Frank Chapman. He was followed to Wellington by his brother, Thomas, who called himself Dr. O. H. Mason. Frank lived on his quarter section for some two years. Then be taught the school at South Haven. Next he engaged in selling drills, and still later, went into business with H. H. Davidson. In 1877, he formed a co-partnership with C. E. Flandro, with whom be dealt in clothing and machinery. Early in 1876 his second brother and true friend—W. J. Wise, alias Joe Mason—came on and worked on the farm until he went to clerking for this new firm. Chapman being naturally a good business man, succeeded well financially, and March 22, 1878, he married Miss Cora Randall, one of the most reputable young ladles of this city, at Hutchinson, under the name of Francis M. Wise. of course this wedding was clandestine. May 23, 1878, he was married to her in this city by Rev. I. Bolcourt, as Frank Chapman.
So he apparently grew and prospered. In February, 1880, he dissolved partnership with Flandro and started in the implement business on his own account. But sometime in the summer of 1880, Tom Wise, alias O. H. Mason, appeared upon the scene again. He sought and obtained employment from Hon. T. Hubbard, Register.
Right here was where Chapman’s later troubles began, he was subject to constant demands of hush money to quiet the tongue of this O. H. Mason, who threatened to betray him to the authorities in Illinois. This O. H. Mason was addicted to strong drink also and had to be carefully watched in his sprees lest he should divulge their secret. Finally their father, H. H. Wise arrived and Tom yielded to the solicitations of his father and two brothers and left professedly for McMinnville, Tennessee, which was given out as their native home. About this time—August, 1880,—John H. Wise, who taught a term of the Beck school near Oxford in the summer of 1879, arrived in Wellington and was employed as book-keeper by his cousin, Frank Wise, alias Chapman. Chapman now discovered that his whereabouts were known in Illinois and made hasty preparations to leave. His brother Joe, was his most staunch friend and most valuable abettor. To him he gave a list of all notes in his possession, amounting to some $11,600 and signed $2,600 of them over to him. He and his wife deeded all their real estate to John H. Wise. On the 22d of September Frank gave his brother a mortgage of $1,700 on his stock and took the next morning’s train for the east.
Previously to this, however, about September 10th, his father left Wellington with a fine span of mules, a new wagon and an appropriate outfit. The same morning that Chapman started for Kansas City (?) John H. Wise started east with an outfit similar to the one his father took with him. At Winfield the father was joined by his son Tom, known as O. H. Mason. At Carthage, Missouri the whole party met—the father, Tom, Frank and John. Here Tom set out for New Burnsides, Illinois, where his mother lives.
When it was discovered that Chapman had fled, his creditors came in thick and fast. At this juncture, Joe found himself in a critical feature. All Chapman's personal and real property had been attached and he was threatened with arrest for complicity in the fraud. It was impossible for him to escape court and the witness stand. There he could pursue but one of two courses. He could tell the truth, ruin his own excellent reputation and give up his brother to the vengeance of the law. On the other plan, he would be compelled to perjure himself from alpha to omega, with every chance of being detected, as his real relationship to Chapman was being suspected in some quarters. He chose death rather than either alternative. After Joe’s death, his clothing and trunk were searched for some clue to the residence of his family. None was found. He and his brother, O. H.. had always claimed McMinnville, Tennessee, as their home. Consequently, C. E. Flandro telegraphed the news, of Joe’s death to O. H. Mason at that place, the result of which is detailed as follows in the McMinnville (Tenn.) Standard, of the 9th inst. :
R. H. Mason, Esq., one of the most prominent citizens of our county, received a telegram last Saturday saying that his son James had committed suicide at Wellington, Kansas, and that his remains would be sent home on Tuesday. The corpse did not reach McMinnville till Wednesday evening. Mr. Mason and family were at the depot sadly awaiting its arrival, and received it with inexpressible sorrow. A letter accompanying the corpse showed the deceased to another Mr. Mason, and not the son of Mr. R. H. Mason. This led to a careful examination of the corpse, which confirmed the letter and disclosed the fact to the satisfaction of all who were present and knew Mr. James Mason, that it was not his body. It seems to be a mistake in addressing Mr. R. H. Mason, McMinnville, Tenn., instead of O. H. Mason, of some other place. Mr. R. H. Mason forwarded $100 to Mr. C. Flandro, Wellington, Kansas, to pay expenses of embalming and shipping the corpse, which was acknowledged and faithfully applied to that purpose, as the corpse was well dressed and well preserved on its arrival here. “The accompanying letter familiarly calls the deceased ‘Joe,’ and gives his name as W. J. Mason. We state these particulars so that if there is any one by the name of O. H. Mason, they may lead him to the facts in the case. So far it is a profound mystery. Mr. R. Mason telegraphed to his son James, who had once resided in Wellington, but was at Silver Cliff, Colorado, on the 23rd ult., and also to the parties named at Wellington, but no response at this writing. We, however, hope to be able to solve the mystery before going to press.”
LATER.
James B. Mason telegraphs his father, R. H. Mason, that he is alive and well at Silver Cliff, Colorado.
The town authorities buried the unknown corpse in the new cemetery.
We are informed that the body has since been exhumed and forwarded to New Burnsides, Illinois.
After his departure from Wellington, Chapman, as we are still prone to call him, traveled under the name of Y. Coffman. After the meeting at Carthage, he visited his mother in Illinois, took in the “Veiled Prophets” and St. Louis fair, stopped at Sedalia, Pierce City. Fort Scott. Vinita, and several other places. In the meantime detectives were shadowing the Wises, who were now traveling together. They finally halted at Washburn, Missouri, with seven miles of the Arkansas line and about forty miles southwest of Pierce City. As soon as the Eureka Spring stage stopped for dinner at Washburn, on the 7th inst., Chapman stepped on and was taken in charge by E S. Pike, of Carthage, and Detective Frank Erekiss ( Note: this is the best I can make out the preceding line) of St. Louis. He was armed with a dirk knife and a self-cocking Colt’s revolver., He had $272 in money in his pockets $8,600 in notes in a cloth belt under his clothing. His account books were in a valise that he carried in his hand. His “bills receivable” book was the only one mutilated. John H. Wise was arrested in the village; he was armed with a dirk and a Smith & Wesson six shooter on his person. In his wagon were found a double-barreled shot gun that Chapman had bought from Dr. F. B. West, before his flight, a sixteen shot Winchester repeating rifle, and immense quantities of ammunition. The old man, H. H. Wise, was arrested a few miles out in the country; he was similarly armed. It seems lo have been their intention to start a supply store on; the range somewhere in the vicinity, of Fort Smith.
The prisoners were taken to Carthage, Missouri, and lodged in jail there until the arrival of Sheriff J. M. Thralls, of this county, with a requisition on the Governor of Missouri.
After remaining in jail until, Saturday, Chapman effected a compromise with his creditors by turning over all his personal and real property. Consequently his father and cousin were set at liberty. All criminal charges against Chapman here were dismissed, and on Tuesday Sheriff Thralls, received a letter from the Illinois officials stating that the case against Francis M. Wise bad been taken off the docket and is not likely to be reinstated, and that the prisoner would not be sent for in several months, if at all. In view of these facts, Squire L. N. King discharged him from custody.
The Moline Plow Company has employed him to settle up their business at this place. Frank says be shall remain here until sent for to be tried in Illinois. If not sent for, he will remain here as Francis M. Wise and endeavor to redeem the excellent reputation he bore in our midst but a short time since.
We submit the true story of his life to the public without comment.—Sumner County Press.

Daily Globe., February 12, 1881
St. Paul, Minn. 1878-1884
Wellington, Kansas, Feb. 11.—Fifteen inches of snow has fallen since last night and the storm still continues. A strong gale is blowing and the snow is drifting. The Kansas City and Louisiana Southern train has been stuck in a cut two miles east of this city since 11 last night. Two engines have been at work all night and a third one buried itself in a drift at 3 this morning and was abandoned. The passengers have been removed to this city.

The Salt Lake Herald., December 03, 1881
Salt Lake City, Utah 1870-1909
Hunnewell, Kansas, 1.—The committee to investigate Danford’s crookedness, find it more pronounced and say he cannot pay over 25¢ on the dollar. It is believed the whole party of bank officials are about to flee. It is claimed on the streets that Danford will be strung up but not killed to-night. Any attempt to send militia would result in the death of the prisoner.

The County Paper., December 30, 1881
Oregon, Mo. 1881-1883
At Caldwell, Kansas, a party of cowboys on a drunken spree a few days ago, commenced firing on the towns people, and killed Mike Meagher, a special policeman. One of their number, Speer, was shot dead while attempting to escape, and the others, after being corralled by a pursuing party of citizens, managed to escape,

Warren Sheaf., December 31, 1881
Warren, Marshall County, Minn. 1880-current
There was a bank failure and swindle at Caldwell, Kansas, and instead of waiting for the swindlers to escape, the abrupt and forcible children of the prairie took the cashier and a director and pointing to a significant coil of rope and a handy telegraph pole intimated that the alternative of non-payment of claims was in the rope and pole. They settled and saved their necks. An eastern paper, which has had occasion to mourn over many defalcations in that section, thinks it is too much to expect that this Kansas method can he introduced into the east, but like the Turkish method of correcting infidelity with a bow-string, it would be a sure cure where it is applied and there are times when there is a tender regret that it is impossible under the masculating routine of civilization in Newark or Boston, as it is not in a prarie-dog town swept by the zephyrs of the boundless west.

Cheyenne Transporter., February 10, 1882,
Darlington, Indian Terr. 1879-1886
Ed. Battin, one of the live young stockmen of the Cherokee Strip, was recently married to Miss Ruth French of Philadelphia. They will make their home in Caldwell. The Transporter extends best wishes.

The Wichita City Eagle, February 23, 1882
Wichita, Kan. 1872-1883
W. W. C. Smith who was book-keeper of Danford’s bank, Caldwell, Kansas, the suspension of which created such a great mob sensation a few weeks ago, was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, by a detective on a charge of grand larceny. Smith is in jail awaiting instructions from Caldwell.

The Weekly Kansas Chief., July 06, 1882
Troy, Kan. 1872-1918
Wedding at Highland.
A large number of friends assembled at the Presbyterian chapel, at Highland, on Thursday evening, June 29th, to witness the marriage of Miss Julia Beeler, of that place, to Mr. Richard Hathaway, of Caldwell, Kansas. The ceremony was performed by Rev. S. M. Irvin. The attendants were Misses Zoo Case and Lelia Miller, and Messrs. J. A. Dillon and F. Beeler. Mrs. Jennie Hammond performed the wedding march. At the close of the ceremony, the band disperse some of it sweetest music. The bridal party then proceeded to the residence of the bride’s father, where refreshments were served, and the evening pleasantly spent.
The bride was dressed in white brocaded silk, made with a train, and bridal veil fastened with orange blossoms. The bridegroom wore the conventional black. The wedding bell and arch of evergreen was very beautiful, and the young ladies of Highland deserve great praise for the taste displayed.
The newly wedded couple will take an extended tour through the East, finally stopping, for some weeks, at Martha’s Vineyard.
The following is a list of the presents :
Check for $l00, bride's father.
Set of jewelry, bride’s mother
Silver fruit dish, Mr. and Mrs. F. I. Hathaway, of Leavenworth.
Bridal set, Mr F. D Hathaway.
Family Bible, Dr. Hathaway
Silver pickle castor, J. A. Dillon.
Individual silver castor, Mrs. Mary Hathaway.
Photograph album, Mrs Jennie Bliss.
Autograph Album, Miss Delia Beeler.
Moore’s poems, Mr. F. Beeler.
Wordsworth’s poems. Miss Maude Springer
Mrs, Deane’s poem. Mrs Agnes Wheeler.
“Gathering in Beulah,” Father Irvin.
Collarette, Miss Lclia Miller.
Hand painted placque, Mrs. Mellie Zimmerman.
Portemonnaie, Miss Carrie Lindley.
Black cashmere and velvet suit, Josiah Beeler.
Walnut writing desk, T. Beeler.
Glass fruit dish, Miss Zoo Case.

Perrysburg Journal., August 11, 1882
Perrysburg, Wood Co., Ohio 186?-1965
Dr. C. R. Hume, of Caldwell, Kansas, will accept our thanks for copies of Caldwell papers, also The Cherokee Advocate, published In the Indian Territory, and a part of it in English and a part in the language of the Cherokee Nation, The Caldwell Post claims that “Caldwell is the heaviest original cattle shipping point in the world,” In proof of this it reports 1,029 cars of stock loaded at their yards and shipped to Eastern markets during the month of July, and calls upon rivals lo come to that point and compare notes. Wait till Perrysburg gets the short cut road and the cattle yards, then we will talk to you as a rival.
Mrs. Dr. Hume, of Caldwell, Kansas, is enjoying her summer vacation well. She has spent two weeks in Tontogany, two weeks in Michigan, and two in Perrysburg. The Doctor sent through a small herd of horned toads for distribution among friends, one of which was chained to the yard fence for some days to get him tamed down and harmless before presenting lo the editor of this paper. He yet carries his head up not unlike those wild western steers In a cornfield.
Dr. Jas, F. Robertson, of Haskins, who has been prospecting in the west, has decided to locate in Caldwell, Kansas, and we learn will remove to that point soon.

Semi-weekly Interior Journal., September 29, 1882
Stanford, Ky. 1881-1905
Miss Mary Marshall, formerly of Crab Orchard, was married last week, at Wellington, Kansas, to Mr. Ed. L. Roser, of that place.

Sacramento Daily Record-Union., October 16, 1882
Sacramento, Calif. 1875-1891
Two More Desperadoes Disposed Of.

St. Louis, October 15th.—James and Edward Bean, two desperadoes who killed the City Marshal of Caldwell, Kansas, on the 22d of last June, attempted to murder Deputy Sheriff Segus, of Van Zandt county, Texas, some time ago, and who belonged to a gang that planned the robbery of the Texas and Pacific Railroad train near Dallas about a month ago, but which was frustrated by a heavy storm, was overtaken by a posse under Constable Harvey near Sunset on Wednesday last, and the former instantly killed and the latter mortally wounded.

Lancaster Daily Intelligencer., April 12, 1883
Lancaster, Pa. 1864-1928
A posse, led by United States Marshal, surrounded a party of Texas horse thieves at Wellington, Kansas. the thieves fired at the officers who returned fire, killing Samuel Ross and wounding James Ross. The father of the Ross boys then surrendered.

Daily Los Angeles Herald., April 13, 1883
Los Angeles, Calif. 1876-1884
Fight With Horse Thieves.

Wellington, Kansas, April 11.—A posse led by Deputy U. S. Marshall Hollister, this morning surrounded a party of Texas horse thieves, seven miles south of the State line, below Hunnewell, and demanding their surrender, but were fired on by the desperadoes. They returned the fire, killing Samuel Ross outright, and wounding Jas. Ross, after which the father of the boys and the man at the head of the gang surrendered

Perrysburg Journal., May 25, 1883
Perrysburg, Wood Co.,Ohio 186?-1965
INTERESTING KANSAS NEWS.
Bad Indian Killed—Probable Discovery of Richard Blin’s Lost Child

We are permitted to publish the following extract front a private letter written at Caldwell, Kansas, on the 21st inst., by Mr. J. W. Ross, and addressed to Mr. F. Hollenbeck of this place,. It contains matter of both general and local interest:
Last week this place was visited by quite a large number of Indians. It can justly be called an eventful week, as the consequences were rather serious in, their character. On Monday an ex-Pawnee Chief, “Big Spotted Horse,” came in. He had lost cast with his tribe, and was known to be a “bad lngen.&rdqu; A principal business with him was to peddle prostitute squaws among the cow boys and others in the territory for gain. He visited Caldwell and other places in the edge of the States frequently. On the morning of this day, 14th inst he called in several houses in the village, begging money, victuals, etc., and when refused in one place, got angry and drew his revolver and threatened to shoot the man. This citizen reported his conduct to the marshal. The officer looked him up and requested him to go with him to the Indian Agt. Spotted Horse refused and resisted, and it is claimed attempted to draw bis pistol on the marshal, when the officer shot him down, and he died in about an hour afterward. The next day some of his tribe came in to investigate it, but did not appear to care much about it.
On Wednesday a large number of Kiawas came for their supplies. There were 32 wagons in the train headed by their Chief “Big Tree.” This chief was tried in the U. S. court a few years ago for murdering white men in the territory, found guilty and sentenced to be hung. The President commuted Ihe sentence to imprisonment for life. He was sent to Florida, and after a few years was pardoned by the President.
It rained heavily Wednesday night, raising the streams so high that they could not return until Saturday: hence we had them here for over three days. These Kiawas appear now to be well disposed. They had several young men with them who had been to Carlisle, Pa., to the Indian school there. These could talk, read and write English quite well. Two of them I got to write their names in my diary or memorandum book. Their names are Luciua A. Philip and Owen Yellow Hair. They can write well&mdasn;better than most white men.
In my opinion, the solution of the Indian problem, is the education of their children, and the breaking up of their tribal relations. They are all anxious to have their children go to the schools. I could see that these educated young men had great influence with the older members of the tribe. I talked freely with them, and told them not to give up their studying. Told them that in a few years they must have charge of all their affairs, and that the Government wanted them to become intelligent, and would help them to good situations, &c. They came back to see me before they left, and promised to write me after a short time.
There was a peculiar circumstance attending their visit here. They had a white boy with them about 17 years old, dressed In regular Indian style, with blanket, painted face, &c. I asked one of Ihe Indians where he was taken captive—that is where the white boy was when taken. He said out in the edge of Mexico. Hubbell Blinn came in on Thursday, and on being told about this white boy, said it was not certain that Richard Blinn's boy was killed at the time Richard’s wife was taken by the Kiawas. That while he was reported killed his body was not found. Hubbell went down to their camp to see the boy, but he kept his blanket over his face and would not talk. The other Indians said he could not talk English. Hub saw an old Frenchman here with the Indians, who said he was at the battle they had in the edge of New Mexico with the Indians, and described the ground so fully and minutely, and the manner the fight was conducted, that he is satisfied that he knows all about it. The Indians and the old Frenchman insist that this boy was not taken in this fight, and claim that he is not pure white but part Mexican, His hair is light and he looks like a pure white boy. Hubbell rays he is built just like the Blinn's, and proposes to get an aunt of the boy—if it is him—who lives some distance north of here, to go down to the agency with him in and investigate the matter fully at an early day.
Crops are looking finely—much better than in Ohio.
Yours Truly,
J. W. Ross

The Sedalia Weekly Bazoo., September 16, 1884
Sedalia, Mo. 187?-1904
A KANSAS CRANK.
He Terrorizes a Whole Town and Shoots a Child.
Wellington, Kansas. Sept. 13—This city was thrown into the wildest excitement at an early hour this morning, by the sudden appearance on the streets of one, Frank Jones, armed with a Winchester and firing into the residences of various citizens. He first went to the residence of John I. Anderson and fired several shots into the house and then repaired to the house of J. M. McKee, through which he fired no less than twelve shots, smashing the furniture to pieces and wounding a small child of Mr. McKee's by shooting it in the arm,
SHATTERING THE BONES
of the elbow and forearm, so that amputation will be necessary. The alarm was quickly spread, and in a few minutes many citizens were up in arms. Jones was mounted on a pony, and while galloping up Washington avenue, discovered Wm. Gaines, street commissioner, on the sidewalk, and at once opened fire on him. A ball took effect in Gains’ shoulder. The ball ranged upward, coming out just above the collar bone, inflicting a very
DANGEROUS WOUND.
Jones then rode rapidly to the house of his brother Sylvester and sent several shots into it. The family happily heard of his coming and had escaped to a neighbors. He then fled to the country but was pursued and captured about a mile from town.
About a week ago Jones was brought before a jury to have his sanity passed upon. The trial elicited considerable interest, but the jury did not feel authorized under the testimony to adjudge him insane. Since then he has threatened the lives of all who testified against him on the trial and this morning he was endeavoring to carry his threat into execution. Public opinion seems divided as to his insanity. He is either insane or an incarnate fiend. He is, now lodged in jail and great fears are entertained that he will be lynched.

Perrysburg Journal., September 19, 1884
Perrysburg, Wood Co., Ohio 186?-1965
Frank Jones, who created a reign of terror in Wellington, Kansas, a few days ago, by shooting into a number of residences, was taken from jail by a body of armed men on the 15th and quietly lynched

Mohave County Miner., September 21, 1884
Mineral Park, A.T. [Ariz.] 1882-1918
Wellington, Kansas. Sept 15—Frank Jones the desperado who shot Wm. Gaines and fired into several houses here last Saturday was quietly lynched between one and two o’clock this morning by fifteen or twenty masked men who took him from the jail and hung him from a gang plank used by workmen in house building.

Wichita Daily Eagle, October 19, 1884
Wichita, Kan., 1884-1886
MURDERED.
DEPUTY MARSHAL HOLLISTER SHOT AND INSTANTLY KILLED.
The Murderer Assisted by His Wife Makes His Escape From a Certain Death.
MURDERED AT HUNNEWELL.
Caldwell, Kansas, Oct. 18.—C. M. Hollister, deputy sheriff of this county, and deputy U. S. marshal, was shot and instantly killed about daylight this morning near Hunnewell, by Bob Cross, a noted desperado, while attempting to arrest him. A posse from here went over last night to arrest Cross for abducting Mr. Haunumo’s daughter last week and found him with his wife. Hollister commanded him to surrender. He failed to respond, when the door was kicked open. The woman shut tho door and it was again kicked opened. Cross then fired two shots but failed to hit any one. The woman then came out of the house and the posse began arranging to fire it to get their man out. While Hollister was standing near the corner of the house guarding the door, Cross again fired and killed Hollister, as above stated. Mrs. Cross entered the house again and came out, followed closely by her husband, he keeping her between himself and the guns of the officers. Cross was covered by a Winchester and would have been killed, but his wife stepped before him and pulled the gun to her breast and held it there until he had escaped in the darkness. He escaped with nothing but his gun and shirt. A large party is in pursuit of him, and if he is caught he will be hanged to the first object that will support his weight. Hollister was one of the bravest and most daring men on the border, and was a terror to evil doers. His funeral takes place to-morrow.

Cheyenne Transporter., December 05, 1884
Darlington, Indian Terr. 1879-1886
D. L. Payne, the well known Oklahoma boomer and leader of the Oklahoma colonists, died suddenly in Wellington, Kansas, on last Friday, the 28th. The circumstances connected his death are as fallows : On Thursday morning he arrived there from Hunnewell and at night addressed a large meeting at the court house, his speech being pronounced one of the best that he ever delivered. After the night’s meeting he returned to the hotel, where he engaged in conversation with friends until 11 o’clock, when he retired to his room, remarking before going that he was not feeling first-rate. On Friday morning he arose in apparent usual health, entered the hotel dining room, where he ordered breakfast and was eating rather heartily. While waiting for an order to be filled, he suddenly settled back in his chair, straightened out his legs, his eyes rolling back, and expired without a movement of the muscles of the face or a long breath. Not a word escaped his lips. Anna Haynes, who was seated next to him, sprang to his relief and began chafing his hands and face, but life had departed almost immediately. The remains were removed to a house in the rear of the hotel, by his friends, where they were viewed by hundreds of people. Some entertain the opinion that it was heart disease, while others say it was from blood poison, by means of a slow and deadly drug.
There are few men in Kansas or the United States that do not know or have heard of Capt. D. L. Payne, of Oklahoma fame. He served in the Kansas house in 1865, from Doniphan county. For years he has been the chief of the Oklahoma boomers. He served In the Union army during the rebellion and has four discharges. He was also a member of the Garfleld post, G. A. R. of Wichita, his funeral took place Sunday afternoon.
A word as to Payne's domestic relations. Years ago he and a Mrs. Anna Haynes, formed a mutual attachment for each other; swore eternal fidelity, and though without the sanction of the law, have since then lived as man and wife, and as a fruit of such alliance a son was born who is now about fourteen years old. This course was do to a deshe of Payne, that as soon as the territory should be opened, he and Mr. Haynes could each take a claim and as soon as their title was secure, it was their purpose to marry, but time dragged on and they became weary of this half married life, and determined to take immediate action in the matter. Mrs. Haynes is a lady about forty-five, about the same age of Payne.
Thus the career of one whose name has been an eye sore to the public is ended, and the result of his labors and publicity will soon have faded into oblivion.

The Record-Union., May 28, 1892
Sacramento, Calif. 1891-1903
PLOWED A DEEP FURROW.
Wind Creates Terrible Havoc at Wellington, Kansas.
BLOCKS OF BUSINESS BUILDINGS LAID IN RUINS.
Hundreds of Dwellings Either Totally Destroyed or More or Less Damaged—Several Persons Killed and a Great Many Seriously Injured—Fire Among the Debris Adds to the Horror.
Special to the Record-Union.
Kansas City, May 27.—A Journal special from Wellington (Ks.) says: A cyclone tonight plowed through the business part of the town with immense destruction of property and some loss of life, just how much it is impossible to tell at this writing. A heavy storm of wind preceded the cyclone about halt an hour. A few minutes after 9 o’clock the cyclone struck the city, coming: from the southwest. Washington avenue, the principal business street, is lined on both sides for blocks with ruins.
To add to the horror, a fire broke out among the debris of Colonel Robinson’s blocks, and Mrs. Susan Asher is supposed to have perished in the flames. A solid block of brick buildings, containing half a dozen stores and printing offices, lies in a tumbled heap. Just across the street a laborer named Fanning was taken out of the ruins dead. It is thought other bodies are in the pile. Hundreds of dwellings are either totally destroyed or more or less damaged.
The city is in darkness, as the broken mains made it necessary to shut down the gas works and save destruction from fire. Hon. James Lawrence, Walter Forsythe and Ed Forsythe were dangerously injured. Seven bodies have been taken out ot the Phillips House ruins, and a large force are at work removing the debris. Two members of the Salvation Army are expected to die from the injuries received. At Squire Smith’s residence seven persons were more or less injured.
The streets are littered with tin roofing, cloth awnings and timbers. Everybody on the streets are carrying lanterns, and it is utterly impossible to get at the exact facts.
The destruction is simply awful, and every minute adds to the horror of the situation. The Standard and Mail offices are wrecked. The Opera-house and a dozen of the best business buildings are destroyed. Fine school buildings and churches are ruined and the loss will foot up many thousands of dollars.
No reports have been received from other points. Wellington is the county seat of Sumner County and has a population of over 10,000 inhabitants. It is in the center of a thickly inhabited agricultural district.
FIFTEEN PERSONS KILLED.
Kansas City, May 27.—A Times special from Wellington (Kansas), says: The cyclone was terribly destructive. At 11 o’clock fifteen persons were known to have been killed and an investigation of the wrecked buildings has only barely commenced. The cyclone did not do so much damage until it reached the center of town. On Jefferson Avenue it destroyed the Lutheran Church. Furious work was done within a compass of four squares bounded by Jefferson Avenue, Avenue C and Seventh and Ninth streets. Every building in those two squares was demolished and wrecked.
Fortunately the residences in that locality were not numerous, otherwise the loss of life would have been much greater. The Phillips Hotel was demolished and seven dead bodies taken from the ruins. The work of rescue there has only begun. The house was well filled with guests and the loss of life is thought to be great. The destruction in the north eastern part of the city is great, but definite details cannot now be had. Great confusion prevails everywhere.
Silva and Walter Forsythe, taken out of the ruins at Conrad’s restaurant, have since died. The Grand Army Hall has been converted into a hospital, and there are now there fifty killed and injured. The latest estimates are fully thirty dead and perhaps a hundred more or less injured.
May 28.—Following is a comple list of the killed at 2:30 (Saturday) morning: Frank D. Campbell, James Hastie, Leonard Adamson, Ida Jones, Mrs. Basher and her sister, Kittie Strahn, Professor Mayer and Hort. Upson.
The missing and probably killed are Lieutenant William French and Cadet Samms of the Salvation Army, Mrs. Murphy and a child named Haltie Hodges.
The badly injured are Chas. Stoner, Guy Colby, Dick Weaver, Carrie Mitchell and Eil Forsythe. Bach received injuries more or less serious.
The streets are impassible and nothing but ruin exists everywhere. At least fifteen bodies have already been taken out of the ruins, and something less than seventy-five were injured. Men are working everywhere trying to rescue the imprisoned ones . No one now can realize the extent of the catastrophe, and daylight alone will reveal the saddest scene of ruin and desolation ever witnessed in Southern Kansas. The Cole and Robinson block of ruins took fire, and strenuous efforts are being made to rescue the people known to be buried there.

The Morning Call., May 30, 1892
San Francisco, Calif. 1878-1895
FLEEING FOR THEIR LIVES.
Wild Panic Created in a Kansas Town by an Approaching Cyclone.
THE STORM PASSED RIGHT BY THEM,
And the Sun Came Out, Dissipating Their Fears for the Present, but There Is Still a Great Deal of Uneasiness.
Special to The Morning Call.
Wellington, Kans., May 29.— When the Wichita excursion arrived this afternoon the members reported that a bulletin had been posted by the Eagle that the conditions were favorable for another tornado. A little before 4 o’clock the sky was a typical Italian sky, and the report was treated as a jest. At 4 o’clock, however, a dense cloud appeared in the south, heavily charged with electricity, and great alarm spread among the people. This alarm increased to the wildest terror when four or five men came rushing into Main street, shouting to the multitude that a cyclone was approaching and to flee for places of safety. A fearful rush was made for basements and stairways, and it is a great wonder that scores of people were not crushed to death in the stampede. The report was found to be correct, for a small, but fully developed twister was seen traveling rapidly in a northwesterly direction, and this increased the excitement and terror. The alarm, however, subsided somewhat in a few minutes when the twister disappeared entirely. A stairway between two buildings yielded beneath the weight of the people crowded upon it, but no one was hurt. A heavy rain followed and the alarm subsided entirely when the dense cloud had passed over and was followed by sunshine again. The cyclone passed to the northwest about a mile west of Corbin in Sumner County, but did no damage so far as heard from.
Another cyclone, originating in the Territory, was seen west of Caldwell, but it was very small and did not touch the ground.
The search of the ruins of the Conrad House, where it was reported groans had been heard, was completed to-day. No bodies were found.
A farmer who has just arrived reports a cloudburst in South Haven, in Sumner County. The rainfall is said to have been terrible, but no news of any damage has been received.
UTTER DESTRUCTION.
Havoc of the Cyclone That Passed Over Hutchinson.
Kansas City, May 29 The Journal’s Wellington (Kansas) special says: Great crowds visited this stricken city to-day, all the railroads entering the town running excursions and the people in the neighborhood flocking in. It was a common remark of those who had witnessed similar scenes that in the extent and completeness of the destruction, it surpasses anything in their experience. The miracle is that the loss of life is not fourfold greater. This is attributed to the fact that the churches, school-houses and business blocks in the tornado's track were practically deserted, excepting two hotels, where the eight causalities so far reported occurred. The death list remains at the figures given yesterday, and all the injured are progressing toward recovery except Mrs. Murphy and Jessie Brown. The funeral of Mrs, Shacher, Kitty Strahn, Leonard Adamson, Ida Jones, Horton Upson and Professor James Mayer took place this afternoon from the Methodist Church. James Hastie was buried by the Odd Fellows and Ed Forsythe will be buried to-morrow. The bodies of Thomas Cornwall and Frank Campbell have been forwarded to their homes. The ruins having been diligently searched the work of clearing away the wreckage will be begun to-morrow. Mechanics nave been at work all day making the partially wrecked buildings habitable and temporary shelter have been provided for the homeless, while a relief organization is raising the necessary funds to keep them from destitution. The Presbyterian and Lutheran churches were well protected by cyclone policies and will be restored, as will be the school house, which was also protected. The insurance on the residence and business property is hardly worth mentioning and the absolute loss is in the neighborhood of $250,000.

The Holt County Sentinel., June 03, 1892, SUPPLEMENT
Oregon, Mo. 1883-1980
The Cyclone's Work.
The most destructive cyclone of the year visited Wellington, Kansas, on the night of the 27th, carrying only death and devastation in its track. Fortunately the wind’s destructive force was exerted in a comparatively narrow area, but within its well-defined track the ruin was complete. The cyclone as it came roaring in from the west, on a course nearly parallel to the southern Kansas track, struck the westernmost ridge at a point where the houses are fortunately much scattered, then after accomplishing some minor items of devastation, true to its instinct for hitting only the high places, it bounded across the intervening valley, occupied by the tracks of the Santa Fe and Rock Island, and let loose its fury once more right in the heart of the town. Its sweep at the point of its greatest violence was hardly wider than two city blocks. The meteorological curse of Kansas got in its deadly and awful work, and its riotous and tortuous path through the place is marked by corpses, fire swept ruins and heaps of rubbish. It ploughed through Wellington’s most prosperous business streets and wherever its fearful gyration’s enveloped a building, ruin, desolation and death followed.
A solid block of brick buildings, containing half a dozen stores and the Monitor, Press and voice printing offices lie in a tumbled heap, of brick and mortar. The city Hill, the $20,000 school house, the Presbyterian, Episcopal and Lutheran churches were completely demolished. Between fifty and sixty dwelling houses were totally or partially destroyed, while of the business houses not wrecked three-fourths have lost their roofs or sustained equivalent damages.
It is now learned from the latest dispatches that twenty lives were lost by the cyclone, seventeen of which have been identified while the injured will fully equal, if not greatly outnumber the list of dead.
The storm did not last over two minutes, but the destruction was complete and the property losses will probably approximate $1,000,000.

The Record-Union., February 19, 1899
Sacramento, Calif. 1891-1903
Ten Buildings Burned.
Wichita (Kan.), Feb. 18.—At midnight fire wiped out the business portion of Hunnewell, Kansas. Ten buildings with their contents were burned. The loss is heavy.

The Marion daily mirror., April 05, 1911
Marion, Ohio 1892-1912
Hunnewell, Kansas—Mrs. Ella Wilson elected mayor by women election board seating her after vote declared tie.

The Salt Lake Tribune., April 09, 1911
Salt Lake City, Utah) 1890-current
HUNNEWELL, KANSAS, TO HAVE WOMAN SUFFRAGE!
By Associated Press.
HUNNEWELL. Kan., April 8.—It now appears that Mrs. Ella Wilson will be mayor of this town. She was given her certificate of election today and Monday night, it is promised, she will be sworn into office.
The result of the election was a the vote between Mrs. Wilson and O. M. Akers. Each received twenty-four votes. Then the judges of the election voted the office to Mrs. Wilson.
A few days later the council reported Mrs. Wilson should have been credited with but twenty-three votes and decided to seat Akers. The city attorney said Mrs. Wilson's election was valid, and today the council yielded and and announced her victory.

The Hawaiian Gazette., May 16, 1911
Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii 1865-1918
WOMAN MAYOR AND COUNCIL MEET SEPARATELY
Hunnewell, Kansas. May 3.—Hunnell’s new mayor, Mrs Ella Wilson, clashed with the city council last night. Last week on Mrs. Wilson’s motion the council voted to meet in a local hotel. Last night the five councilmen went to the hotel to hold their meeting, but Mrs. Wilson “met” in a feed store. She had the clerks journal and other papers, but as she alone was not a quorum, neither session transacted any business. meanwhile Mrs. W. E. Hilton and Mrs. G. A. Osburn, who were to have been appointed city clerk and city marshall, still lack their commissions.

The Evening Standard., June 08, 1911
Ogden City, Utah) 1910-1913
SOLONS T0 OBEY WOMAN MAYOR
“May Be Ousted from Office for Failure to Perform Duties,” Says Attorney General.
TOPEKA, Kas., June 7.— Attorney General Dawes today notified the five members of the council at Hunnewell, Kansas, that they must co-operate with the woman mayor of the town, Mrs. Ella Wilson and that no more trifling would be tolerated,
“I notified the councilmen that the joke had gone far enough” said the attorney-general. “The councilmen may be compelled to attend the official meetings and transact the city’s business through a writ of mandamus.
‘They may be ousted from office for failure to perform their duties or they may be tried for dereliction in office which would subject them to a fine of $1,000 and a year in Jail each.”

The Bemidji Daily Pioneer., June 12, 1911
Bemidji, Minn. 1904-1971
The woman mayor of Hunnewell, Kansas, is perturbed because the men aldermen will not attend council meeting. Mrs. Mayor might try wearing a harem skirt.

Arizona Republican., September 13, 1911
Phoenix, Ariz. 1890-1930
THINGS TO HUM IN LITTLE HUNNEWELL
KANSAS CITY. Sept. 12.—“We are going to get busy right now and things are going to hum in Hunnewell.” said C. W. Trickett, who was named by Governor Stubbs to assist Mrs. Ella Wilson, woman mayor of that town, who is having all sorts of trouble with the council. Last night the council again refused to confirm the mayors appointments and Trickett says there is no need now of further delay. It looks like victory is near for the woman mayor.

The Washington Times., September 17, 1911
Washington, D.C. 1902-1939
HUNNEWELL EXPERIMENT NOT A SUCCESS.
The lady mayoress of Hunnewell, Kansas, hasn't had time to do very much fancy work or preserving since she was elected to the proud eminence she occupies. And just about the time she gets matters more or less quieted in her city council trouble breaks out in the Hunnewell chamber of commerce.
That sordid body which finds chivalry a poor equivalent for the loss of trade, has memorialized the governor of the State to the effect that the newspapers of the country are doing downright harm by the stories that are being printed in regard to the town with the lady mayoress, and they want her removed. These wicked stories set forth that gambling, bootlegging, and all the forms of vice prevail in the little Kansas town over which Lady Mayoress Wilson presides, the inference being that her effeminate fingers are too feeble to sway the rod of correction. It may be recalled that, in point of fact, the lady mayoress was the only member of the distaff ticket which won out in the election. So it is not true that the police force—that is to say the town constable—is a woman. There is no good reason why there should be anything more the matter with Hunnewell than there is with the rest of Kansas.
But these evil newspapers, which are always pruriently seeking a sensation to exploit, have left the impression that the Mammon of Unrighteousness has built its throne right on the public square of Hunnewell, and this reputation is running down the price of real estate and discounting the prospective value of the municipal bond issue. So long as the ridicule took no material shape and did not interfere with the normal growth of Hunnewell the citizens themselves rather enjoyed the sensation of being on the map. But now that the reflex action has come, it's all different. The chief executive is asked to take a hand, and as he can't call off the newspapers, he is requested to call off the lady mayoress.
Candid people, on their way to the storm pit, pause to remark once more that the Hunnewell experiment has not been a success.

The Evening Standard., September 26, 1911
Ogden City, Utah 1910-1913
OUSTER SUIT IN HUNNEWELL, KANSAS
Topeka, Kas., Sept 26.—Attorney General Dawson today commenced an ouster suit against the four men members of the Hunncwell, Kas., council for harassing and refusing to meet with Mrs. Ella Wilson, the woman mayor. The men against whom the suit is directed are:
F J. Lauder, B. Kclr, J. F. Richardson and J. O, Ellis.

The News-Herald., October 05, 1911
Hillsboro, Highland Co., Ohio 1886-1973
Woman Mayor and Policeman.
A Kansas town now has a woman mayor, a woman city marshall and a woman city clerk. The October Woman’s Home Companion, in its “About People” department, says:
“If Chicago's motto is, ‘I Will!’ the motto of Kansas seems to be, ‘Why Not?’ For example, no other town had elected a woman to the mayoralty; but the voters of Hunnewell. Kansas, saw in that no reason why they should not do so, especially if the woman happened to be the best man. And when they had chosen Mrs. Ella Wilson as mayor, she quickly justified their confidence in her vigor and independence. First Mrs. Wilson startled the community by appointing another woman, Mrs. Rosie E. Osborne, city marshal, with instructions to preserve order, to clean house, and to enforce the laws restricting the sale of liquor. Mrs. Osborne is six feet tall, weighs nearly two hundred and fifty pounds, and is said to fear neither man nor mouse. Mrs. Wilson also appointed Mrs. E. E. Hilton, town clerk. Like many another reform mayor Mrs. Wilson has found her city council in stubborn opposition to her every move; but she is very popular with a large element upon whose moral and political support she depends to enable her to make good the second half of her declaration that ‘ Hunnewell is no worse than a lot of other towns but it is going to be better than most of them.’ Mrs. Wilson owns a home In Hunnewell and several farms in Oklahoma and Kansas, and as her husband is an invalid, has long been accustomed to manage her own affairs unassisted. She has two sons—one twenty, the other fourteen years old.

The Washington Times., December 25, 1911
Washington, D.C. 1902-1939
Woman Mayor Reigns Supreme, in Hunnewell
KANSAS CITY. Mo., Dec. 26.—Mrs. Ella Wilson reigns supreme In Hunnewell. All save three members of the troublesome city council have resigned and the woman mayor no longer can be confronted with the defiance of the city council that “If she does not sign it will pass the measure over her veto.”
When she vetoes a measure that ends it, and if a councilman desires to obtain the passage of a measure he must be certain the mayor approves it and will sign it. This makes the councilmen more considerate of Mrs. Wilson. When they meet they are not as defiant as they were before she appealed to Governor Stubbs. The governor answered the appeal by instructing the attorney general to begin suits to oust the six councilmen. That was done, and as the costs of the suit might fall on the councilmen if they were ousted, those who had property at once resigned.

The Logan Republican., September 28, 1912
Logan, Utah 1902-1924
TRIPLE MURDER AT WELLINGTON, KANSAS
Wellington, Kan., Sept. 25.—Theodore McKnelly a car repairer and his daughter, Gretta, were today found dead and Mrs. McKnelly fatally injured in a tent on the outskirts of Wellington whither they recently had moved for the daughter’s health. All three had been shot and their skulls crushed. Robbery Is believed to have been the motive.
The bodies were found shortly after noon, the crime apparently having been committed about five hours previously. A bloody baseball bat lay nearby. Mrs. McKnelly was still breathing, but it was apparent she could not recover. There were knife wounds on the bodies of both women and evldence of attack.
Otto McKnelly, a son who lives in another part of the city, said his father had had money in his possession. No money could be found after the murders were discovered.
So far as the police could ascertain the McKnellys were without enemies.
Mrs. McKnelly died tonight without having regained consciousness.

Bisbee Daily Review, February 22, 1914
Bisbee, Ariz. 1901-1971
MURDERER ARRESTED
HANNIBAL. Mo., Feb. 21.—John Kidwell was arrested here today after he had confessed to the murder of a family of three near Wellington, Kansas, on Sept. 24, 1912. The McKinley family, consisting of an aged man, his wife and a grown daughter, were. killed while sleeping in a tent. The murder was one of the most brutal in the history of Kansas crimes. The father and daughter were beaten to death with a baseball bat, while the wife was shot after the assailant had beat her into unconsciousness. Robbery was the supposed motive.



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