The Kansans and Whence They Came – Eylar Family History
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Source Citation:
Richard Wilson, "", The Kansans and Whence They Came, Internet: (accessed ), < >.

J ames, Samuel, Aaron, and Charles Eylar were the four sons of Joseph Eylar Jr.'s second marriage who lived to adulthood. After the death of their father, most of the many Eylar children remained in Ohio. However, each of these four eventually left and at some time resided in northeastern Kansas. Unlike most family migrations which tended to occur en masse, each of them arrived separately in Kansas.

James Monroe Eylar

James Monroe Eylar was born 03 Jun 1838 in Winchester, Adams County, Ohio, and was the first of the family to go to Kansas only months after the territory had been opened for settlement. In September 1854, at the age of only sixteen, James journeyed via river steamers from Ohio to Rushville, Buchanan County, Missouri, where two of his uncles, Alfred and Matt Fenton, were living. He was here to settle on and secure a land claim for his uncles across the Missouri River near present day Doniphan, Doniphan County, Kansas. According to multiple newspaper articles, James once gave another man who lived near Doniphan a ride to the town of Atchison, Kansas, which would have taken several hours. He only found out near the end of the trip, after discussing how James' family in Missouri felt about a man named Jim Lane, that the man was in fact Lane. At the time, "Bleeding Kansas" would have been at its full height, and James H. Lane was well known as a prominent radical "jayhawker". He was also the president of the territorial convention that drafted Kansas' original anti-slavery "Topeka Constitution" in 1855. James' opinion of the man's activities is not known, but his pro-slavery uncles in Missouri would not have been impressed with his passenger. Lane was later a senator for Kansas and became better known for leading hundreds of men to commit infamous atrocities against a Missouri town during the Civil War.note1 James' three years on this farm coincided almost entirely with the time of Bleeding Kansas, before he returned home in 1857. He then married Louisa Belle Sample 05 Mar 1862 in Winchester.

The following year, James' loyalties become more evident when he enlisted for the Union during the Civil War as a teamster in the Quartermaster Corps. His company traversed the states of Kentucky and Tennessee where he was present at the Seige of Knoxville. This was a seige of Gen. Ambrose Burnside's Union forces by the Confederate forces of Gen. James Longstreet. Both sides had engaged the other to keep them from providing reinforcements at Chattanooga, Tennessee, where Gen. Ulysses Grant was already in battle against Confederate Gen. Braxton Bragg. The two sides first fought on 16 Nov 1863, and as planned, Burnside retreated the next day into the city of Knoxville, Tennessee, where he had already prepared for its defense. Longstreet attacked but the Confederates suffered heavy losses. After eighteen days, Gen. Longstreet retreated.

Following the war, James moved west again in 1865 to Buchanan County, Missouri, where his uncles were still living. He and his family moved into Doniphan County between 1867-1869 and were living here in 1870, but they returned to Missouri again by 1875. In 1881, they finally returned to Kansas to stay. He bought a farm of 160 acres on Independence Creek in Union Township, Doniphan County, where he engaged in general farming and raising hogs. They remained here until four years before his death, when they moved to Everest in neighboring Brown County, Kansas. James died here 30 Jan 1915 and was buried in the Denton Cemetery back in Doniphan County. James' obituary referred to him as "one of the most intelligent men in this part of the country. He was a student, inclined to be literary, and a great reader." As if to substantiate this, an archaeologistnote2 wrote a letter to the newspaper the following week, telling of how James had helped him locate the site of an ancient Kansa Indian town near the town of Doniphan 12-15 years prior. Louisa died 26 Feb 1921 in the home of their son, Matthew, in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, but she was buried with her husband. They had the following children:

  1. Elizabeth Virginia "Jennie" Eylar (1863-1932) who was born 07 Feb 1863 in Adams County, Ohio. Jennie married Christian S. Swartz 13 Sep 1882 in Doniphan County, Kansas. They relocated to near Everest, Brown County, Kansas, c.1894, where they remained. She died 15 Dec 1932, and Christian died 23 Aug 1934. Both died in Everest and were buried in the Denton Cemetery.
  2. James Allen Eylar (1867-1917) who was born 04 Mar 1867 in Rushville, Missouri. James married Henrietta "Etta" MacGregor in 1892. He was a traveling salesman for the Smith Premier Typewriter Companynote3 so they relocated frequently. They lived in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1900. They were in Davenport, Scott County, Iowa, at least 1901-1905, and in Aurora, Kane County, Illinois, in 1910. James died 28 Jan 1917, and Etta died 06 Sep 1947, both in Detroit, Michigan. James was buried in the Denton Cemetery.
  3. Matthew Sample Eylar (1869-1948) who was born 03 Jun 1869 in Doniphan County, Kansas. Matthew married Alice Joanna Archer 03 Jun 1891 in Atchison, Atchison County, Kansas. Matthew began his career in typewriters, a relatively new type of office equipment at the time, as a salesman in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1889. By 1908, he had moved to London to organize the international sales staff of the Smith Premier Typewriter Company, one of the largest manufacturers at the time. He returned in 1911 to become their general sales manager. He joined the Elliot-Fisher Companynote4 as vice-president of sales in 1920, and remained in this position until retiring in 1940. They had lived in various locations around Westchester County, New York, during this time. Matthew and Alice then moved to St. Petersburg, Florida. After his father died, Matthew bought his siblings' shares of their father's 160 acre farm, and he began consolidating many surrounding farms. By 1933, the "Eylar Ranch" consisted of 900 acres of land, and Matthew was beginning to breed thoroughbred Aberdeen Angus cattle. By the time the farm was sold c.1943, it consisted of 1,480 acres of land, an Olympic size swimming pool, and two uniquely designed barns that are now on the National Register of Historic Places. Matthew died 05 Feb 1948 in St. Petersburg. Alice died 05 Jun 1950 in Scarsdale, New York, after moving back east to live with their daughter. Both were buried in the Denton Cemetery.
  4. Roseanna Belle "Annie" Eylar (1871-1885) who was born 20 Sep 1871 in Doniphan County and died 23 Jan 1885. She was buried in the Denton Cemetery.
  5. Alice Ellen Eylar (1873-1874) who was born 23 Oct 1873 and died 13 Oct 1874. She was buried in the Denton Cemetery.
  6. Joseph Wilkins Eylar (1875-1950) who was born 10 Oct 1875 in Rushville. He married Guili Elma "Elma" Suydam c.1905. By 1910, Joseph was living in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where he and Elma remained. He was a manager for the Smith Premier Typewriter Company here until at least 1917. By 1920, he had begun selling real estate. In 1925, he was a salesman for the Todd Protectograph, a manual check writing device for businesses. Elma was elected in 1928 as the only woman in the Oklahoma state legislature at the time and served for two years. Joseph died 24 Jan 1950, and Elma died 15 Oct 1956, both in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Joseph was buried in the Denton Cemetery, but Elma was buried in Cleveland County, Oklahoma.
  7. Fenton Burgess Eylar (1879-) who was born 25 Mar 1879 in Rushville. Fenton married Grace Virginia Iles 10 Aug 1904 in Pierce Junction, Atchison County, Kansas, while he was living in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They were living in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1910. In 1913, they moved to Seattle, Washington, where Fenton was a manager for the Smith Premier Typewriter Company. He is last found here in 1957.
  8. Edward Lee Eylar (1881-1957) who was born 15 Jul 1881 in Doniphan County. Edward married Mattie Ellen "Mae" Iles, an older sister of Grace. The two Eylar brothers and two Iles sisters were married in a double wedding ceremony in Pierce Junction. Edward was living with his brother, Matthew, in East Orange, New Jersey, in 1900, and he was already a typewriter salesman. He was living in Milwaukee with his brother, Fenton, when he married Mae in 1904. They were living in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, by 1912, and he was a manager here for the Smith Premier Typewriter Company by 1920. They remained here until Edward's death on 30 Dec 1957. Mae died 28 Jan 1971. Both were buried in the Denton Cemetery.

Samuel Eylar

Samuel Houston Eylar, the eldest child of their father's second marriage, was born 3 Sep 1836 in Winchester. He purchased land with James in Doniphan County, Kansas, in August 1865. This must have been the time when both moved to the area, since they were listed as residents of Adams County, Ohio. It is not yet known if either ever lived on this particular Kansas property. In 1870, Samuel was living across the Missouri River with his youngest brother, Charles, in Lake Township, Buchanan County, Missouri. By 1883, he was living in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, but it is not known when he had relocated or where else he may have lived in the meantime. He also appears in the first directory of Oklahoma Territory in 1890.

In July 1900, Samuel was suffering from congestive heart failure, so he wrote to his brother James to ask if he could come to Kansas to stay with him. James' son, Joseph Wilkins Eylar, went to Oklahoma to care for him briefly before bringing him back to Kansas. He died 2 Sep 1900 in James' home in Union Township, Doniphan County, Kansas, and he was buried in Denton Cemetery. His probate records in Oklahoma show that shortly before his death, Samuel wrote a will leaving his propertynote5 in Oklahoma County to his nephew who cared for him. Samuel's siblings challenged the will, but it was upheld.

Aaron Randolph Eylar

Aaron Randolph "Coosie" Eylar was born 21 Mar 1847 only four years before his father's death. While still living in Winchester, Coosie married Matilda Horner 17 Dec 1872. The next March, they too moved west to a farm in Wolf River Township, Doniphan County, Kansas. After renting the same property for nine years, they finally bought a farm of their own in 1882. It was 70 acres of land adjoining James' new farm, to which they eventually added another 30 acres. In November 1915, Coosie suffered a stroke from which he never recovered. He died 31 Jul 1917. Matilda died 03 Dec 1927 while living with their son, Alfred. Both were buried in the Denton Cemetery. They had the following children:

  1. Calvin LeRoy "Roy" Eylar (1877-1944) who was born 16 Apr 1877 near Bendena, Doniphan County, Kansas. He first married Elizabeth Kaufman 24 Feb 1910 in Atchison, Atchison County, Kansas. She died 12 Feb 1911 at the age of 17 and was buried in the Denton Cemetery near Denton. Roy second married Ada Inez Powell 22 Sep 1913 in St. Joseph, Buchanan County, Missouri. They first lived next to Roy's parents. In 1923, Roy began renting a farm in Shannon Township, Atchison County. In 1930, he was renting in Independence Township, Doniphan County. At least 1935-1940, they were in Washington Township, Brown County. Throughout most of these years, however, Roy had farmed on the large "Eylar Ranch", owned by his cousin, Matthew Eylar, near Denton, Doniphan County, Kansas. Shortly before Roy's death, they moved to Lancaster, Atchison County, Kansas, where he died 06 Nov 1944. Ada had moved into the town of Atchison by 1957, where she died 26 Jun 1962. Both were buried in the Denton Cemetery.
  2. Lida Elizabeth Eylar (1880-1921) previously discussed in the "Maternal Branch in Kansas".
  3. Alfred Lewis Eylar (1886-1959) who was born 16 Feb 1886 in Union Township, Doniphan County, Kansas. In 1910, he was boarding with another family and working as a driver for a livery barn. By 1915, he had returned home, and he soon married Nellie Esther Brown 15 Apr 1916 in Atchison, Atchison County, Kansas. Neither told their parents of the wedding until after it had taken place. They lived and farmed in Union Township, Doniphan County, until 10 Sep 1936, when Alfred auctioned off all of his stock and farming equipment. They then relocated to the Good Intent neighborhood in Shannon Township, Atchison County, where they remained. Then, during World War II, all three of their sons fought in different theaters of the war around the world. Based on the numerous mentions in early newspapers as well as in his obituary, Alfred must have been a particularly avid hunter. He died in Good Intent 6 Jan 1959, and Nellie moved into the town of Atchison. She died 24 Dec 1994 at the age of 99. Both were buried in the Denton Cemetery.

Charles Eylar

Charles Edwin Eylar was the youngest of all the Eylar children, born 29 Dec 1848. As mentioned previously, he was living in Missouri with Samuel in 1870. He then married Frances Parr 14 Sep 1876 at her home in Doniphan County. In 1880, they were living in Wayne Township, Doniphan County, Kansas. Their family moved to Oklahoma between 1891-1895. In 1900, they were here in Davis Township, Pottawatomie County. By 1910, they had relocated again to Spadra Township, Johnson County, Arkansas. By 1918, they had finally relocated to Bonner County, Idaho, where Francis died on 31 May 1921. Charles died here on 22 Oct 1924. In all, Charles and Francis had seven children:

  1. Tazwell Lee "Lee T." Eylar (1877-) who was born 07 Aug 1877 in Kansas. Lee married Minnie P. Williams 9 Dec 1894 in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. In 1922, Lee was convicted of auto theft in McAlester, Pittsburg County, Oklahoma, however, the verdict was reversed on appeal. The court record refers to Lee as a "versatile individual" who had been a farmer, a telephone operator, a newspaper editor, a minister of the gospel, and at the time of the trial, a lawyer. This is the last definitely known of him.
  2. Edwin Henry Eylar (1879-1954) who was born 13 Aug 1879 in Kansas. Edwin married Hattie May Williams 27 Jul 1902 in Wanette, Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. Hattie was a sister of Minnie Williams. They were living in Shawnee, Pottawatomie County, in 1916. By 1918, they had moved to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where they remained. Edwin was a plumber and eventually ran his own business here. Edwin died 05 Sep 1954, and Hattie died 30 May 1961, both in Oklahoma City. Both were buried here in the Rose Hill Burial Park.
  3. Francis Devilla "Frank" Eylar (1883-1925) who was a blacksmith. He married Malva S. Spencer 8 Sep 1901 in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. In 1910, they were living in Spadra Township, Johnson County, Arkansas. By 1918, they had moved to Bonner County, Idaho, where Frank died.
  4. James Joseph "Joe" Eylar (1885-1963) who was born 01 May 1885 in Sumner County, Kansas. Joe was also a blacksmith and farmer. He first married Eddie Lou Bowen 12 Sep 1906 in Johnson County, Arkansas. He second married Mary Lee Myers c.1923. Between 1945-1949, they moved to Ventura County, California, where they remained. Joe died 08 Jan 1963 in Fillmore, California. Mary Lee died 22 Dec 1990 in Los Angeles County, California.
  5. Harry Arthur Eylar (1888-1952) who was born 31 Mar 1888 in Kansas. Harry married Maude O. Bartlett 29 Jul 1907 in Johnson County, Arkansas. They moved to Bonner County, Idaho, before 1918. Between 1920-1926, they had relocated to Livingston, Park County, Montana, where they remained through at least 1946. Harry died 25 Jul 1952 in Deer Lodge County, Montana, and Maude died 10 Feb 1971 in Spokane, Washington. They were buried in Mountain View Cemetery in Livingston.
  6. Elizabeth "Betty" Eylar (c.1891-) who was born in Kansas and is last found on the 1910 census with her parents.
  7. Mae Emmaline Eylar (1895-1988) who was born 11 Mar 1895 in Shawnee, Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. Mae married Nenoki Takehara 8 Dec 1916 in Spokane, Washington. Nenoki was a foreman for the railroad. They were living in Bonners Ferry and Priest River, Idaho, between 1917-1923 when their children were born. In 1930, they were in Douglas County, Washington, and they moved to Stevens County, Washington, in March 1934. By 1940, Mae was widowed and living in Coulee Center, Grant County, Washington, with her two younger sons. One was working as a laborer on the construction of the Grand Coulee Dam. Emma was living in Wahkiakum County, Washington, when she died 21 Aug 1988.

Judge Eylar

The father of the preceding siblings was Joseph Eylar, Jr. Joseph was born 07 Apr 1789 in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, in the Philadelphia vicinity, but his family began moving westward soon after his birth. The book "Caldwell's Illustrated Historical Atlas of Adams County, Ohio, 1797-1880", by Walter F. Arms, 1880, states that in 1810, Joseph opened the first hotel where the town of Winchester, Adams County, Ohio, would later be located. He also began the first tannery and saddlery here in 1812. Both of these were achieved at a very young age. He then briefly served as a Private in Morrison's Company in the Ohio Militia from 29 July to 08 September 1813 during the War of 1812. The following year, he married Elizabeth "Betsy" Fenton, a daughter of Jeremiah Fenton, on 29 Jun 1814 in Adams County. Then, the town of Winchester was finally laid out in 1815. When the new town received a post office in 1820, Joseph became its first postmaster. He served in this position until 1841. He was a prominent Democrat and was elected as an Associate Judge of Adams County from 1835-1849, thereafter being referred to as "Judge" Eylar. Judge Eylar and Betsy had ten children together:

  1. Rose Ann Eylar (1815-1815) who was born 29 May 1815 in Winchester. She died the following month.
  2. Mary Ann Eylar (1816-1891) who was born 05 Jul 1816 in Winchester. Mary Ann first married James F. Young c.1836 and second married James Buchanan Moore c.1844. James Moore died 11 May 1868, and Mary Ann died 29 Apr 1891, both in Jefferson Township, Brown County, Ohio.
  3. Sarah Ann "Sallie Ann" Eylar (1818-1877) who was born 20 Mar 1818 in Winchester. She married Samuel McNoun 19 Mar 1844 in Adams County, Ohio. They lived in Jackson Township, Brown County, Ohio, but Sallie Ann died 29 May 1877 in Winchester.
  4. Alfred Allen Eylar (1820-1882) who was born 31 Jan 1820 in Winchester. Alfred married Rebecca Ann Cockerill in 1844. They relocated to Pontiac, Livingston County, Illinois, in 1856, where they remained. Rebecca died here 24 Feb 1864, and Alfred died here 23 Oct 1882. Both were buried in the South Side Cemetery in Pontiac.
  5. Ruth Ann Eylar (1822-1878) who was born 10 Apr 1822 in Winchester. She married Joseph Randolph Cockerill 1840 in Adams County, Ohio. They lived in West Union, Adams County. Joseph was a brother of Rebecca Cockerill. He served as a Representative from Ohio in the U.S. Congress from 1857-1859. He then served as a Colonel during the Civil War, organizing and commanding the 70th Ohio Infantry. In 1867, the Senate awarded him the rank of Brevet Brigadier General, an honorary rank. One of their sons, John Albert Cockerill, was the editor of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and New York World newspapers when they were owned by Joseph Pulitzer, the namesake of the prestigious journalism prize. Joseph died 23 Oct 1875 in West Union. Ruth Ann died 06 Aug 1878 after moving to Cincinnati, Ohio, to live with her daughter.
  6. Joseph Fenton Eylar (1824-1890) who was born 27 Apr 1824 in Winchester. Joseph was a saddler like his father and remained in Winchester through at least 1860. He married Sally Judith Edwards 14 Oct 1874 in Corsicana, Navarro County, Texas, and remained there. He died here 14 Jun 1890.
  7. John Eylar (1826-1866) who was born 06 Jul 1826 in Winchester. John married Ann A. Wilkins 26 Mar 1846 in Adams County, Ohio. He was a saddler as well and lived in Wayne Township, Adams County, Ohio. He died 07 Sep 1866 in West Union, and Ann died 26 Dec 1897.
  8. Benjamin Franklin Eylar (1828-) who was born 25 Dec 1828. He married Martha Elgin. In 1860, he was a mental patient in the County Infirmary of Highland County, Ohio, and Martha was living with her family near Locust Grove, Adams County, Ohio. By 1870, he had been transferred to the Southern Ohio Lunatic Asylum in Dayton.note6
  9. David Shafer Eylar (1831-1897) who was born 10 Jul 1831 in Winchester. David married Martha Cannon 30 May 1858 in Adams County, Ohio. He learned the tannery trade from his father and operated a shop in Locust Grove, Adams County, from 1832-1857. He was then elected sheriff of the county from 1857-1860. After this, he ran "Grove House", a hotel in Locust Grove. David died 11 Mar 1897, and Martha died 18 Jul 1913, both in Locust Grove.
  10. Oliver Hazard Eylar (1834-1893) who was born 23 Aug 1834 in Winchester. Oliver married Elma S. Bunn 24 Nov 1857 in Adams County, Ohio. He enlisted as a Private in the Seventh Ohio Cavalry on 7 Aug 1862. He was promoted to Captain and served until 4 Jul 1865. After the war, they moved to Jackson County, Missouri. They then relocated to Oxford Township, Johnson County, Kansas, in March 1868. They finally moved into the town of Olathe in the same county c.1883, where they remained. Elma died 07 Feb 1888, and Oliver died 04 Nov 1893, both in Olathe. They were buried in the Elmwood Cemetery in Kansas City, Jackson County, Missouri.

Elizabeth Fenton(s)

Betsy died only five months after Oliver's birth on 23 Jan 1835, leaving several young, motherless children in the home. Within the year, Joseph had remarried to a second Elizabeth Fenton who was born 9 Dec 1813. The younger Elizabeth was a daughter of "Kentucky John" Fenton, a first cousin of "Betsy". This means Joseph’s second wife was a first cousin, once removed, of his first. In 1850, Judge Eylar was still running his tannery in Winchester with help from at least three of his sons, Alfred, Joseph, and Oliver. Joseph Eylar, Jr. died on 09 May 1851, and he was buried in the Winchester Cemetery with his first wife. By this time, he had seven more children with Elizabeth, giving him a total of 17 children in all:

  1. Samuel Houston Eylar (1836-1900) previously discussed.
  2. James Monroe Eylar (1838-1915) previously discussed.
  3. Virginia Elizabeth "Elizabeth" Eylar (1840-1891) who was born 02 Mar 1840 in Winchester. She married Francis Taylor Leggett 1861 in Winchester. They lived in Ripley, Brown County, Ohio. Francis died 20 Mar 1874. Elizabeth died 18 Dec 1891 in Ripley.
  4. Emmaline Amanda "Emma" Eylar (1843-1924) who was born 14 Feb 1843 in Winchester. Emma married Alburtis McMeekin 8 Jul 1875 in Adams County, Ohio. Alburtis had been a musician in the Field & Staff Company, 24th Ohio Infantry, during the Civil War. He and Emma lived in Columbus, Ohio, where Alburtis died 20 Jun 1917, and Emma died 07 Mar 1924. They were buried in the Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus.
  5. Madison Fenton Eylar (1844-1851) who was born 01 Sep 1844 in Winchester, and died here in 1851. He was buried in the Winchester Cemetery.
  6. Aaron Randolph "Coosie" Eylar (1847-1917) previously discussed.
  7. Charles Edwin Eylar (1848-1924) also previously discussed.

By 1860, the Eylar children were beginning to disperse around the area. Joseph's widow and her own younger children, including Coosie and Charles, were living in Winchester. Her stepson, Joseph, was living next door with a wealthy family named Osburn. Oliver, the youngest child from the first marriage, was now married but still living nearby. He and Joseph had continued in the saddlery business after their father's death. Elizabeth's two oldest children, Samuel and James, were farming and living outside of town with the Walter family. Other children had moved away to Brown, Highland, and Greene counties in Ohio. Elizabeth passed away in Winchester on 22 Nov 1875. She was buried alongside her husband and her cousin, Joseph's first wife.

Joseph Sr. in Pennsylvania

The father of Joseph Eylar Jr. was named Joseph Eyler, Sr. (the original spelling was probably Euler, pronounced "Oiler"). Joseph Jr. and his descendants are the only branch that adopted the variant spelling of Eylar.

Joseph Sr. was born 22 Sep 1759 in the Kingdom of Württemberg, which is now a part of the state of Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany. Family lore that was first recorded in 1900 says that Joseph left home in 1777 to avoid military conscription. He then travelled 800 miles to the coast where he sailed for America, arriving that autumn in Baltimore, Maryland. In the meantime, however, the Revolutionary War was underway in Joseph's new home, so he served as a Private in the Pennsylvania Militia sometime between 1777-1783. Joseph purchased a conestoga wagon with a team of four horses and became a teamster, or wagoner. A conestoga is a much larger predecessor to the more familiar prairie schooner that was later used to cross the prairies, and it was used primarily for shipping goods across Pennsylvania. In 1787, he married Mary Ann Rosenmuller (also spelled Rosenmiller, or Rosemiller). Mary Ann was born 12 Jan 1767 to Ludwig Rosenmuller and Barbara Bauer (also spelled Bower). They were living in Huntington Township, York County, Pennsylvania (now in Adams County), but she was baptized at St. Paul's United Church of Christ in Amity, Berks County, Pennsylvania. According to the book, A History of Adams County, Ohio, from its earliest settlement to the present time, written by Evans and Stivers in 1900, the Rosenmullers were a wealthy German family of Tories, or British Loyalists, and would not allow their daughter to marry Joseph. The young couple then eloped, causing a permanent rift in the family. Mary Ann’s sisters apparently never missed an opportunity to remind her that they had married better than she had. To avoid the situation, they moved further west to Bedford, Bedford County, Pennsylvania, shortly after the birth of their first child in 1789.

Bedford was then a frontier town through which goods passed on their way further west, so it was a good place for a man with a wagon. Their next three children were born here. Interestingly, the duration of their stay in Bedford County coincides almost exactly to that of the Whiskey Rebellion of 1791-94. Farmers of western Pennsylvania were upset over a 1791 law placing a tax on distilled spirits, mainly whiskey, which developed into rioting and near rebellion throughout the region. This prompted President George Washington to personally lead an army of 13,700 men to quell the rioting and assert the authority of the newly formed federal government. However, upon his arrival in the town of Bedford in 1794, Washington found that the uprising had already quieted down, so no real fighting was necessary.


In 1795, the Eyler and other families travelled down the Ohio River to an area of the vast Northwest Territory that is now in southern Ohio. Their keelboat, a shallow freight riverboat with a keel and minimal sails, landed at the "Three Islands" adjacent to Manchester, one of the earliest settlements in Ohio. This small group of islands is situated in the middle of the Ohio River between Kentucky and Ohio and is now a National Wildlife Refuge. That summer, Joseph, along with most others of the settlement, grew a small crop of corn on the island now known as Manchester Island. The following winter he built what Evans and Stivers states was the first ever cabin in Tiffin Township. It was on 300 acres near where Killinstown would later be. This town has since come and gone, but was located near present day West Union, Adams County, Ohio.

Probably between 1810-20, the family left this area for another farm near Winchester in northern Adams County, where they lived only a few years. Then at some point before the 1830 census, they bought another farm near Berrysville, Highland County, Ohio, which is in the adjacent county to the north. Joseph ran a distillery here, which suggests that he might have had more than a passing interest in the happenings of the Whiskey Rebellion three decades earlier. They remained in Highland County until 1834, when that property was sold, and they finally moved to Brown County, north of the village of Fincastle. Joseph and Mary Ann had the following children:

  1. Joseph Eylar, Jr. (1789-1851) previously discussed.
  2. Mary Ann "Polly" Eyler (1790-1841) who was born 10 Aug 1790 in Bedford County, Pennsylvania. She married John Gossett Jun 1811 in Adams County, Ohio. Polly died 11 Sep 1841, and John died 31 Aug 1853, both in Salem Township, Highland County, Ohio.
  3. Sarah Ann Eyler (1792-1830) who was born 24 Jan 1792 in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Sarah Ann married James Collier 17 Aug 1809 in Adams County, Ohio. She died 1830 in Mohican Township, Wayne County, Ohio, but James died 11 Aug 1836 in Wisconsin.
  4. Catherine Ann Eyler (1793-1869) who was born 23 Sep 1793 in Bedford County. She married Isaac Carey 14 Oct 1818 in Adams County, Ohio. Isaac died 04 May 1866, and Catherine Ann died 04 Jul 1869, both in Eagle Township, Brown County, Ohio.
  5. Samuel Eyler (c.1795-c.1795) who was born and died c.1795 in Adams County. He was buried in Killinstown, Ohio.
  6. David Eyler (c.1797-c.1797) who was born and died c.1797 in Adams County. He was also buried in Killinstown.
  7. John Eyler (1799-1830) who was born 22 Sep 1799 in Adams County. John married Rachel Gossett 9 Mar 1820 in Highland County, Ohio. He died in 1830.
  8. Lewis Eyler (1800-c.1800) who was born 1800 in Adams County and died in infancy. He was buried in Killinstown.
  9. Henry Eyler (1801-1869) who was born 25 Dec 1801 in Adams County. Henry married Mary Miller 14 Apr 1826 in Brown County, Ohio. Mary died 31 Jan 1869, and Henry died 19 Aug 1869, both in Jackson Township, Brown County, Ohio.
  10. Aaron Eyler (1803-1884) who was born 10 Nov 1803 in Adams County. Aaron married Elizabeth Wilkin 9 Jun 1826 in Highland County, Ohio. Elizabeth died 30 Sep 1884, and Aaron died less than a month later on 23 Oct 1884, both in Jackson Township, Brown County, Ohio.
  11. Elizabeth Ann Eyler (1806-1873) who was born 24 Oct 1806 in Tiffin Township, Adams County. She married John Lander Beveridge 22 Feb 1841 in Adams County. John died 24 Aug 1871, and Elizabeth Ann died 26 Jul 1873, both in Russelville, Brown County, Ohio.
  12. Martin Eyler who died in childhood and was buried in Killinstown.
  13. George Eyler who also died in childhood and was buried in Killinstown.

Joseph Eyler, Sr. died 29 Jul 1839 and was buried in the Wilson Cemetery (aka Aerl Cemetery) east of Fincastle, Ohio. His tombstone says that he died "in his 80th year", and there is a War of 1812 veteran's marker next to his grave. In the Evans and Stivers book again, Joseph was described as such:

"In personal appearance [he] was strikingly peculiar. He was five feet, five inches in height and weighed over three hundred pounds. His complexion was very fair, hair dark, and eyes steel blue. He spoke English tolerably well, but preferred to use his native language when possible to do so. His household language, until his family was grown, was the German, and he always read and prayed in that tongue. It was the rule in his household to read a portion of God's Holy Word every evening, followed with a simple family worship in the way of prayer." He had a "love of good horses, of which he always kept a number of the 'largest and fattest.' In pleasant weather he would turn them out to pasture, and as they galloped over the fields they fairly shook the earth. It was a common remark among his neighbors when it thundered, that "Joe Eyler's horses were having a romp."

Mary Ann survived Joseph until 13 Mar 1841 and was buried next to him. Within months, the surviving children who still lived in Adams and Brown counties, began the process of partitioning Joseph's property. Notices were placed in the newspaper to notify any heirs whose whereabouts were unknown that the property was to be sold. These included their sister, Mary Ann, and the children of their deceased brother and sister, John and Sarah Ann.


The names of Joseph Eyler, Sr.'s parents are not known with any certainty. The 1900 book by Evans and Stivers states that Joseph's parents were Georg Euler and his wife, Catharine, who remained in Württemberg. There is a slightly earlier undated and unsigned work from the 1890's which is attributed to Joseph Wilkins Eylar, the "Eylar Family Genealogy", that says his father was Christopher and Georg was his grandfather. There do not seem to be any original records to support either of these claims.note7 Whatever their names, they had at least two sons who emigrated:

  1. Joseph Eyler, Sr. (1759-1839) previously discussed.
  2. Henry Eyler who also emigrated to America. According to the "Eylar Family Genealogy", he followed Joseph to Pennsylvania and Adams County, Ohio. He then moved to Wayne County, Ohio, when one of Joseph's married daughters, Sarah Ann Eyler, moved there. His body was supposedly found in a hollow log there three years after he had gone missing. He is supposed to have died without children. No original records have been found that include Henry.

Archaeological Search

In the summer of 1999, I set out with my brother to find the location of Coosie Eylar's homesite in Doniphan County, Kansas. Our guide was a plat map from 1882 showing the locations of James' and Coosie's farms and their main buildings, although I had no idea how accurate they were ever intended to be. We also knew that it should be within the boundaries of the "Eylar Ranch", the farm enlarged by Matthew Eylar as previously discussed. Upon arriving at the site, it was clear we were at the correct location. We could see one of the two historic barns on the property, James' house that stood exactly where shown on the plat with the nearby swimming pool which still existed but appeared to be disused, and the road that passed by Coosie's home. This road was now just a dirt path within the larger farm.

We spoke to one of the present owners who assured us that there was nothing at the spot we were trying to find. She was also reluctant to allow us to look for it, because of the numerous venomous snakes she had encountered on the property. Years later, I found newspaper articles telling that Matilda (Horner) Eylar, Coosie's wife, had been bitten by a copperhead snake while picking peaches in practically the exact location we were seeking. Nevertheless, after persistent pleading, we finally went down the path for a look, taking along the owner's pack of Weimaraner puppies to scare off any snakes. We walked to the location where the plat showed Coosie's house to have been located. It was now a wooded, rocky, sloping side of a hill at the edge of a wide open field. The obvious difficulty in tilling it was probably the reason this small pocket had been left undisturbed. Even from the roadside we could see relics in the underbrush. There was a building foundation made of local stacked stone projecting from the side of the hill and standing up to four feet high. Most of the original building probably extended into the open field. Next to this was a rusted, castiron pump still standing over a well. About thirty feet from this lay a completely collapsed wooden shed or outbuilding. It had been constucted with square nails, dating it to be old enough to belong to Coosie. He had lived here until 1917, about the time these stopped being used. There were also a few miscellaneous items scattered in the grass, but we didn't rummage much because of the snakes. We managed to avoid them, but unfortunately, we hadn't been warned of the ticks which we were still removing well into the evening.

Eylar Selected Documents

Published Book

A History of Adams County, Ohio, from its earliest settlement to the present time, by Nelson W. Evans and Emmons B. Stivers, 1900.



Joseph Eyler built the first cabin in this township where he afterwards made his home near Killinstown, in the winter of 1795. The Eyler farm of 300 acres is now owned by John Crawford, Samuel McFeeters and Sandy Craigmile. When Reverend James B. Finley passed over Tod's Trace from Limestone to Chillicothe with his father's cattle and negroes in 1796, he noted the fact that there was a cabin near where the town of West Union now stands, built by Mr. Oiler, but no one lived in it....

pp. 561-562.

Joseph Eyler,
the pioneer, was born in the Kingdom of Wurtemburg, Germany, September 22, 1759. He was a son of George and Catherine Eyler who lived and died in that country. In 1777 he ran away from home to escape service in the army, and after walking 800 miles to the coast, shipped for the United States, arriving at Baltimore in the autumn of that year. From that time until the period of his marriage little is known of him except that he was engaged as a wagoner, and accumulated enough to own a four-horse team and a "Cannestoga" of his own. In 1787 he married Mary Ann Rosemiller, a daughter of John George Rosemiller, living in the vicinity of Philadelphia. The Rosemillers were wealthy Tories, and objected to their daughter's marrying the unknown and poor wagoner; an elopement followed, and Mary Ann Rosemiller became Mary Ann Eyler. However, John George Rosemiller had other daughters "Ann" to cheer his declining years. They were Ann, Rose Ann, Catherine Ann, Barbara Ann, Elizabeth Ann, Julia Ann, Mary Ann, who eloped with Eyler, and a son named John George Lewis. The breach in the domestic life of the Rosemillers made by the clandestine marriage of Mary Ann remained until her death. Her sisters had married well, and they never lost the opportunity to remind her of the fact, so that she and her husband shortly after the birth of their first child, the late Judge Joseph Eyler, of Adams County, removed to Bedford, Pennsylvania, then a frontier town from which goods were distributed to the settlements in western Virginia and Kentucky. It was a point where the young wagoner found ready employment. In 1795, Joseph Eyler and his little family, in company with others, came down the Ohio River by keel-boat and landed at the "Three Islands" where Nathaniel Massie had founded the town of Manchester. Eyler tended a patch of corn on the lower island that summer, and the following winter built a cabin on a tract of three hundred acres purchased near Killinstown. The next year, James B. Finley passed over Tod's old trace to the new settlement at Chillicothe and noted the fact that there was a "cabin near the present site of West Union, built by Mr. Oiler, but no one was living in it." Eyler's original tract is now owned by Sandy Craigmile, John Crawford, and Samuel McFeeters. Joseph Eyler moved into his cabin in the year 1796. He then had four small children, Joseph, Mary, Sarah and Catherine, and there were born here John, Samuel, Martin, Henry, David, Lewis, Gerorge, and Elizabeth. Of these, Samuel, Martin, David, Lewis, and George died in childhood and are buried at Killinstown. He cleared away the forest and soon possessed one of the best farms in that portion of the country. He was industrious and economical and accumulated considerable wealth for those times. He was frequently called on to serve in local official positions such as "lister" of property, being a man of good judgment and a great deal of common sense. From Killinstown he moved to a farm near Winchester, on what is now known as the "Massie Farm." He resided there a few years and then bought a farm near Berryville, in Highland County, where he conducted a distillery. He remained there until 1834, when he disposed of his property and removed to Brown County, on a farm now owned by his grandson, Carey C. Eyler, north of the village of Fincastle. Here he died July 29, 1839, and was buried in the Wilson cemetery about one mile east of the village of Fincastle. His wife survived until March 13, 1841. In personal appearance Joseph Eyler was strikingly peculiar. He was five feet, five inches in height and weighed over three hundred pounds. His complexion was very fair, hair dark, and eyes steel blue. He spoke English tolerably well, but preferred to use his native language when possible to do so. His household language, until his family was grown, was the German, and he always read and prayed in that tongue. It was the rule in his household to read a portion of God's Holy Word every evening, followed with a simple family worship in the way of prayer. A strong trait of Joseph Eyler was his love of good horses, of which he always kept a number of the "largest and fattest." In pleasant weather he would turn them out to pasture, and as they galloped over the fields they fairly shook the earth. It was a common remark among his neighbors when it thundered, that "Joe Eyler's horses were having a romp."

Published Book

Caldwell's Illustrated Historical Atlas of Adams County, Ohio, 1797-1880, by Walter F. Arms, 1880.



Joseph Eylar started the first hotel in the village about 1810. It stood on the north-west corner of South street. The property is now [1880] owned by John Erthal.


The first tannery was started in 1812 by Joseph Eylar, by whom it was carried on until near the time of his death in 1851. It was soon after discontinued.

Published Book

Genealogical and Biographical Record of North-Eastern Kansas, 1900.

Vol II, pp. 475-476.

[There are many errors in the following original articles. Corrections are in brackets.]


The self-made man is very much in evidence in Kansas, a state in the making and development of which "many men of many minds" have had a part. Doniphan county has had its full proportion of these hustling, useful and successful citizens and one of the most prominent of them is the man whose name is the title of this notice.
Aron [Aaron] Randolph Eylar, a successful farmer of Union township, Doniphan county, Kansas, is a son of Joseph Eylar, whose memory is revered by the old residents of Winchester, Adams county, Ohio, and a younger brother of James Monroe Eylar, a biographical sketch of whom is presented in this work. Joseph Eylar was born near Hagerstown, Maryland, in 1786 [later research shows Bucks Co., PA in 1789, but he lived in Maryland for a time], and died at Winchester, Ohio, in 1851, aged sixty-five years. He was a soldier in defense of his country in our last war with England. In 1818 he located at Winchester, Ohio, where he put a tannery in operation and rose to business and political prominence. He was a leader of the local Democracy and served with distinction as an associate justice of the judicial district of which Adams county formed a part. Joseph Eylar's father, with his brother, John, came early from Germany to Maryland [Pennsylvania], where he founded a home. His mother was a Miss Rosemiller, a member of a family conspicuous in the American Revolution, and they are both buried in the old graveyard in Fincastle, Ohio.
On his mother's side, Aron [Aaron] Randolph Eylar, who was born in Adams county, Ohio, March 21, 1847, is connected with the Fentons. Elizabeth Fenton, his mother [second wife of Joseph Eylar], was a daughter of John Fenton, born in Kentucky [Pennsylvania], whose [grand]father was Jerry Fenton [his father was Samuel Fenton]. The last named went into Ohio, about the time it became a state and died there on his new farm soon after his settlement. The children of Joseph and Elizabeth (Fenton) Eylar were: Samuel, who lives near Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; James M., of Union township, Doniphan county, Kansas; Elizabeth, the wife of F.T. Liggett, of Ripley, Ohio; Emeline, who married Albertus McMeekin, of Columbus Ohio; Aron [Aaron] Randolph, of Union township, Doniphan county, Kansas, and Charles, of Oklahoma. For his second [first] wife Joseph Eylar married Elizabeth Fenton, a relative of his first [second] wife. Of their nine children not one survives. Three of their daughters left families. These were: Ruth, who married Colonel J.R. Cockrell; Mary, who married Richard Moore, and Sallie Ann, who married Samuel McNown.
The subject of this notice began the stern battle of life for himself before he attained his majority. He worked two years on a farm by the month and after that was profitably employed until the spring of 1873, when he went to Kansas and located in Doniphan county. His means were limited and for nine years he worked rented land in Wolf River township. In 1882 he removed to Union township and bought a farm of seventy acres on Wolf river of Thomas Robbins. He has since added thirty acres to the place, making it a farm of one hundred acres, and he has so assiduously devoted himself to its development and improvement that he now has a productive and attractive country place and a home which, considering its location and environments, is a model from every point of view.
Mr. Eylar is a Democrat and a citizen of much public spirit. He was married, December 17, 1872, to Miss Matilda Horner, a daughter of Ephraim Horner. Mr. Horner was from the state of Pennsylvania and his wife was Drusilla Swearingen, who bore him children as follows: Matilda; Nancy, who is dead; William L., of Highland county, Ohio; John T., of Adams county, same state; Calvin E., of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Laura, wife of Richard Lenter, of Adams county, already mentioned. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Eylar are named Calvin Leroy, Lydia [Lida] Elizabeth and Alfred Louis.

Vol III, pp. 708-710.


The American progenitor of the family of Eylars, of which James Monroe and Aaron Randolph Eylar, of Eden, Doniphan county, Kansas, are worthy representatives, was one of the name who, with his brother John, emigrated from Germany to Maryland [Pennsylvania], where the grandfather of James M. and Aaron R. Eylar married a woman of the Rosemiller family, of Revolutionary note. John Eylar [Joseph Eylar, Sr.] and his wife lie buried side by side at Fincastle, Ohio. Their son, Joseph Eylar, father of the two prominent residents of Doniphan county above mentioned, was born near Hagerstown, Maryland, in 1876, [later research shows Bucks Co., PA in 1789] and died in Adams county, Ohio, in 1851. He served the United States in the army in the war of 1812, moved to Ohio in 1818, established a tannery at Winchester and built up a large and profitable business. He was a prominent Democrat and was elected to the office of associate justice of the district in which he lived.
Joseph Eylar was twice married. His first [second] wife was Elizabeth Fenton, a native of Kentucky and granddaughter of Jerry Fenton, who was a pioneer in Ohio about the time it became a state and died there soon afterward on his new farm. The children of Joseph and Elizabeth (Fenton) Eylar were: Samuel, who lives near Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; James M., of Union township, Doniphan county, Kansas; Elizabeth, wife of F.T. Liggett, of Ripley, Ohio; Emeline, who married Alburtus McMeekin, of Columbus, Ohio; Aaron Randolph, of Union township, Doniphan county, Kansas; and Charles, of Oklahoma. For his second [first] wife Joseph Eylar married Elizabeth Fenton, a relative of his first [second] wife. Of their nine children not one survives. Those who left families were: Ruth, who married Colonel J.R. Cockrell; Mary, who married Richard Moore; and Mrs. Sallie Ann McNown.
James Monroe Eylar, born in Adams county, Ohio, June 3, 1838, spent his boyhood and youth at Winchester, Ohio, and acquired a good English education in the village schools. He went to Kansas in 1854 and settled on a claim near Doniphan to secure it for his uncle. Mr. Fenton, who lived near Rushville, Missouri. He made the journey from Cincinnati to St. Louis on the steamer Castle Garden and from St. Louis to Atchison on the steamer Honduras. He disembarked at George William's landing, on the Missouri river, opposite Atchison, in September of the year mentioned, and corroborates the usual statement that at that time things about there had a blank and forbidding appearance and that many of the men he encountered there and elsewhere on the way from Ohio to Kansas were characteristically "wild and woolly." He went to his destination on what is now the Langdon farm and during the succeeding three years "played farmer" to some practical purpose. Of his few neighbors in that early period only William Lancaster remains to tell the story of the border days in that part of Doniphan county.
In 1857 Mr. Eylar went back to his native county in Ohio and made his home there during the succeeding eight years, which comprised the period of the civil war. He entered the service of the United States government, in 1863, as a teamster in the quartermaster's department, and the command to which he was attached traversed the states of Kentucky and Tennessee, and it was the fortune of Mr. Eylar to be present at the siege of Knoxville. After two years' service, which ended with the cessation of hostilities, he was discharged, and he then located in Buchanan county, Missouri, where he farmed successfully until 1881, when he a second time went to Doniphan county, Kansas, this time to better his own fortunes.
Immediately after his arrival in the county, in 1881, Mr. Eylar bought his present farm of one hundred and sixty acres, which he has since improved greatly in every way and brought to a high state of productiveness. It ranks with the best stock farms in the county and Mr. Eylar is recognized as a progressive farmer who knows how to produce good crops and dispose of them to advantage. He devotes himself to general farming and has made a marked success of raising hogs.
Politically Mr. Eylar is a Democrat. His forefathers were devoted to Democratic principles and he has never seen reason why he should falter in his allegiance to them. He is not an office seeker or an active politician but takes a patriotic interest in all public questions. Mr. Eylar was married, near Jacksonville, Ohio, March 5, 1862, to Louisa, daughter of Matthew and Elizabeth (Guilford) Sample. Mr. and Mrs. Eylar's children are: Virginia, wife of Christian Swartz, of Brown county, Kansas; James A., who married Etta McGregor and is employed by the Smith-Premier Typewriter Company, at St. Louis, Missouri; Matthew S., who married Alice Archer and is manager of the office of the Hatch Book Typewriter Company in New York city; and Joseph, Edward and Fenton, all members of their parents' household.


Democratic Standard, Georgetown, Ohio.

20 Apr 1841.

Administrator's Notice.

All persons indebted to the estate of Mary Ann Eylar, deceased, late of Eagle township, Brown county, Ohio, are requested to make immediate payment. All persons having claims against said estate, are hereby notified to present them, legally proven, within one year from the date hereof. April 20th, 1841.

Aaron Eylar, Administrator.

22 Jun 1841.

John Gossett and Polly his wife, formerly Polly Eylar, Aaron Eylar, Joseph Eylar, Henry Eylar and Martha Ann Howland, formerly Martha Ann Eylar, who intermarried with James Howland, and Daniel Collier, and Elizabeth Riley, formerly Elizabeth Collier, who intermarried with James Riley, Sarah Collier, and Letha Collier, who intermarried with some person whose name is unknown-

Will Take Notice,
That a petition was filed against them as heirs of Joseph Eylar, sr. deceased, on the 19th day of June, A. D. 1841, in the Court of Common Pleas of Brown county, Ohio, by Aaron Eylar, Joseph Eylar, Henry Eylar, Katharine Cary and Isaac her husband, and Elizabeth Beveridge and John L. Beveridge her husband, and is now pending, wherein the said Aaron Eylar, Joseph Eylar and others demand partition of the following real estate: beginning at a large white oak, and stone south-east corner to Henry Eylar; thence south, 68 degrees east, 79 1/2 poles to a mulberry and two elms; thence north, 62 degrees east, 101 1/2 poles to a maple, corner to Piggly Edie and others; thence north, 68 degrees west, 78 poles to a sugar tree and stone in the line of Henry Eylar; thence with Henry Eylar's line south, 22 degrees west, 100 poles to the beginning; containing 50 acres: and that at the next term of said Court application will be made by the said Aaron Eylar and Joseph Eylar and others, for an order that partition may be made of said premises.

Aaron Eylar,
Joseph Eylar,
Henry Eylar,
Isaac Cary,
Katharine Cary,
John L. Beveridge,
Elizabeth Beveridge,

A. Ellison, Counsel for Petitioners.
June 21, 1841.


Adams County Democrat, West Union, Ohio.

14 May 1851.

Honorable Joseph Eylar, at his residence in Winchester after a protracted illness, aged about 63 years. Judge Eylar was a native Pennsylvanian and emigrated to this county with his parents nearly 51 years ago. He lived near West Union for many years before removing to this locality, where he established his business and where he remained to his death. For 14 years, he served as Associate Judge of the Court of Common Pleas of this county, he also filled numerous other public trusts.

Published Book

A History of Adams County, Ohio, from its earliest settlement to the present time, by Nelson W. Evans and Emmons B. Stivers, 1900.


David Shafer Eylar.

He was born July 10, 1831, in Manchester, Adams County, the ninth of ten children of the first marriage of Judge Joseph Eylar. He was taught what the District school could give him. His father was a tanner and he learned the trade under him. In 1832 to 1857, he conducted a tannery in Locust Grove. In the Fall of 1857, he was elected Sheriff on the Democratic ticket and re-elected in 1859.
On May 30, 1858, he was married to Miss Martha Cannon and began housekeeping in West Union. He moved to Locust Grove from West Union in 1860 and has resided there ever since. From 1860 to 1865, he kept hotel in the property formerly occupied by Mrs. Jeremiah Cannon. In 1865, he took the present Eylar Hotel and conducted it until his death. For some time after returning to Locust Grove he carried on farming.
He was Justice of the Peace of Franklin Township from 1875 to 1878 and from 1881 to 1896. He was the father of nine children, as follows: Jennie, married James C. Copeland and resides in Locust Grove; Oliver Rodney, physician, located at Cynthiana, Pike County, Ohio. He graduated as M. D., April 12, 1900, from Starling Medical College, Columbus, Ohio. He was married to Miss Lilly B. Newland in 1885. The second daughter, Hettie, married R. D. McClure and died in 1890, leaving one child. Elizabeth married Jacob Randolph Zile, Ex-Commissioner of Adams County, and a prosperous farmer. Oscar Coleman married Laura Rearick and is a farmer near Locust Grove. Ella and Ruth reside with their mother. Alverda died at the age of four years. John Randolph, the youngest, resides with his mother in the old home.
In politics, Mr. Eylar was always a Democrat. He took an active part in all the contests in which his party was engaged. He usually attended all the conventions and was active in the caucuses and at the polls. He had a fascination and love for political contests. He was not religious in the sense of church membership, but aimed to deal fairly with all men. He was a heavy set man, over the medium height, of a dark complexion, dark hair and broad, with a saturnine expression. While he could laugh and enjoy humor, his usual mood was serious and earnest to an unusual degree. He was kind to his family and loyal to his friends. For his enemies he cared but little. He aimed to do the best he could for those dependent on him and that is the best any one can do. He died March 11, 1897.


The Cincinatti Enquirer, Cincinatti, Ohio.

6 Aug 1878, p.4.

Mrs. J. R. Cockerill - Sad and Probably Fatal Accident.

Mrs. Cockerill, widow of the late General J. R. Cockerill, and mother of Colonel John A. Cockerill, formerly of the Enquirer, was missed from her residence at Home City at midnight Sunday night and, on search being made, was found in an insensible condition below the river bank near the house, having apparently walked in her sleep off the bank and fallen a distance of nearly fifteen feet to the ground below. She has remained insensible ever since, having scarcely moved or spoken since she was first found at one o'clock Monday morning. Mrs. Cockerill was the wife of General J. R. Cockerill, of the Seventieth Ohio, and daughter of Judge Eylar, of West Union, Adams County, Ohio, and mother of three children, Colonel Armstead Cockerill, of the Twentyfourth Ohio; Colonel J. A. Cockerill, now managing editor of the Baltimore Gazette, and Mrs. Campbell, wife of Dr. John Campbell, where she has been living since the death of her husband, some three years since. She had been ill for several weeks, and had only the day before recovered sufficiently to ride out. As she has not spoken since she was found senseless on the scene of her accident, of course, the details, or, in fact, the cause, can only be inferred. Colonel Cockerill has been telegraphed and will probably arrive from Baltimore to day.
The following, received at ten o'clock last night, tells the latest as to her condition:
Special Dispatch to the Enquirer.
Delhi, Ohio, August 5. - Mrs. Cockerill remains in the same condition as when found this morning. She has not been conscious for a single moment. The attending physicians think she has sustained internal injuries, and very little hope is entertained of her recovery.

Plat Book

Historical Plat Book of Doniphan County, Kansas, 1882.

A. R. EYLAR was born in 1847 in Winchester, Adams County, Ohio; settled in this county in 1873; residence on Section 36, Township 4, Range 19; P.O. Eden; business, farmer and stock-raiser. His wife was born in the same place in 1846. They were married in 1872, and have one son and one daughter.

Published Book

History of the State of Kansas, by William G. Cutler, 1883.

vol.2, p.631, Johnson County.

OLIVER H. EYLAR, farmer, was born in Adams County, Ohio, August 28, 1834. His father was a tanner and saddler, and the subject of this sketch was employed with him for some years, after which, for seven years, he carried on mercantile business at Winchester, and was also engaged in manufacturing saddles, etc. On August 7, 1862, he enlisted in the Seventh Ohio Cavalry; was appointed Second Lieutenant, a year later First Lieutenant, and in a year more was promoted to Captain, serving until July 4, 1865, after which he resided for two years in Jackson County, Mo. In March, 1868, he came to Johnson County, located in Oxford Township, and has since followed agricultural pursuits. He has 160 acres of land in Section 8, Township 14, Range 25, all improved, and raises considerable stock. He has quite recently changed his place of residence to Olathe, where he intends to reside, although is about to purchase more land and farm on an extensive scale. Mr. Eylar was married in Adams County, Ohio, November 24, 1857, to Elma S. Bunn, they have seven living children.

Death Notice

Atchison Patriot, Atchison, Kansas.

24 Jan 1885, p.4.

Annie Eyler [Eylar], aged fourteen years, daughter of James M. Eyler [Eylar], died last evening at the residence of her parents, on Independence Creek. It is inexpressibly sad to record the death of one so young.


Olathe Republican Mirror, Olathe, Kansas.

9 Nov 1893, p.2.


Died, on Saturday, evening, Nov. 4, at his residence on East Park street, Olathe, Capt. O. H. Eylar, in the 59th year of his age. The funeral services were held at the house, Monday, at 2 o'clock p.m., conducted by Rev. John McQuoid, while the ceremony at the cemetery was under the direction and performed in accordance with the beautiful ritualistic services of the Grand Army of the Republic, Franklin Post, No.68, of Olathe, of which the deceased was a prominent member, having the matter in charge.
Capt. Eylar was an old citizen of Johnson county, having first settled on a farm near Stanley in Oxford township. Afterwards he purchased the John Owens farm near the village of Monticello, but lived there only a few years, when he sold out and removed to Olathe and settled on Park street, in the house where he passed his last days.
Capt. Eylar served with distinction in the war of the rebellion, and was always loyal to the cause he served. He was an uncle of Col. John A. Cockrell, editor of the New York Advertiser, and formerly of the World, and St. Louis Post-Dispatch. His wife died some years ago, and now a large family of children are left orphans.


Troy Times, Troy, Kansas.

6 Jul 1900, p.3.

A.R. Eylar, a well known farmer residing near Eden, in the southwestern part of the county was quite severely injured during the storm last Wednesday. The roof of a building was torn off and blown down on him, pinning him to the earth and crushing him badly. He sustained a broken leg and a dislocated hip joint. He was taken home and a physician summoned. He was improving at last reports and will pull through all right. The storm was much more severe in that section of the country than in other parts.

Hotel Fire

The Davenport Weekly Leader, Davenport, Iowa.

24 Feb 1903, p.8.

Had a Narrow Escape in Fire
J. A. Eylar Returns to Davenport and Takes to his Bed.

J. A. Eylar [James Allen Eylar], of Davenport, district representative for the Smith-Premier Typewriter company, who had such a narrow escape from death in the Clifton hotel fire at Cedar Rapids, is again at his home in this city and thankful that he escaped with his life. At the time that the fire broke out, Mr. Eylar was occupying a room upon the second floor of the ill-fated hotel. Suddenly he was awakened by the roaring of the flames and quickly throwing on some of his clothes, after turning on the electric light in his room, rushed out in the hallway, intending to escape by means of the stairway. He finally reached the head of the stairway and in so doing stumbled over several persons on the floor who had been suffocated by the intense smoke in attempting their escape. Mr. Eylar, however, got no farther than the head of the stairs, for below was a roaring furnace of flames. Almost suffocated himself by this time, he next managed to find his way back to the room he had left. The smoke by this time had so filled the room that he could scarcely see the rays from the electric light therein. Quickly throwing open a window, Mr. Eylar crawled out upon the window sill and hung over by his hands to his full length and let himself fall to the sidewalk below. In alighting, he sustained a severely sprained ankle, as also a sprain of the back. He managed to reach an adjoining hotel, where he was given the best of care. He arrived at his home in Davenport Friday afternoon and is now confined there as a result of his injuries.


The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

29 Jul 1904, p.8.

Jas. Eylar, of Bendena, is one of the few men now living who came to Atchison in 1854. He was related to the Fentons, at Rushville, and in 1855 lived on a claim they took up in the bottom near Doniphan. One day he was driving to Atchison, and a tall, angular man asked permission to ride with him. Eylar told him about his relatives over in Missouri, and said he had lived there awhile. "What do they think of Jim Lane over in Missouri?" the stranger asked. "They don't think much of him," Eylar replied. "If they had the (fighting word) over there they would hang him." On his arrival at Atchison, Eylar found that the strange man he had brought to town, was Jim Lane.

Double Wedding

The Kansas Chief, Troy, Kansas.

11 Aug 1904, p.4.

Prosperous Bendena Boys.

On Wednesday August 10, Edward L. Eylar was married to Miss Mattie E. Iles near Everest. At the same time and place, Fenton B. Eylar was married to Miss Grace Iles. The Eylar brothers were born at Bendena, north of Atchison, but are now living at Milwaukee, where they represent the Smith Premier typewriter. Five of the Eylar boys are employed by the Smith Premier company. The oldest one gets a salary of $5,000 a year and expenses and is now in Europe with his wife who was Miss Archer of Atchison. The youngest of the brothers gets a salary of $150 a month and expenses, in addition to commissions. They are sons of Jas. Eylar who came to Atchison [Doniphan County] in 1854, when sixteen years old. He was related to the Fenton's in Rushville, and this fact brought him to Atchison [Doniphan County] the first year of its existence. The success of the Eylar brothers shows what industry and good work will do for boys. You don't have to be "recommended" to get a good job: your work and conduct, if good will recommend you. The Misses Iles are daughters of Robert Illes [Iles], a large land owner in the vicinity of Pierce Junction. They are hansome [sic] young ladies, and worthy of the fine looking brothers they have married. - Atchison Globe.


The Kansas Chief, Troy, Kansas.

19 Jan 1905, p.2.

A.R. Eylar has succeeded Fred Wallisch resigned as director of the east line of the Huron telephone Co.

Trip Home

The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

9 Oct 1907, p.4.

A.R. Eylar leaves next Monday to visit his old home in Ohio, after an absence of thirty years.

Family Dinner

The Kansas Chief, Troy, Kansas.

4 Jan 1912, p.6.

Mr. and Mrs. A.R. Eylar gave a New Year's dinner to a few relatives and friends. They served roast turkey, goose and beef with all the fixings, cake, pie, etc. Those who enjoyed their hospitality were: Mr. and Mrs. Will Glaman and sons, Geo. and Will; Mr. and Mrs. John Weik, Gladys and Ralph Weik; Mr. and Mrs. L. G. Frakes, May, Hazel and Raymond Frakes; Mrs. Chris Weik, Mrs. Wynkoop, Miss Robertson, Edgar Wynkoop, John Cranus, Mr. and Mrs. Art Fenton.

Obituary and Article

The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

1 Feb 1915, p.2.

James Eylar, a pioneer of Doniphan county, died Saturday at his home in Everest. He settled in Doniphan county in 1854, and came from Ohio, and for years lived on a farm on Independence creek, twelve miles north west of Atchison. Four years ago he moved to Everest. The funeral services will occur in the Methodist church at Everest at 11 o'clock Wednesday morning, and burial will take place in Denton.
Mr. Eylar, who was a very kindly man, was one of the most intelligent men in this part of the country. He was a student, inclined to be literary, and a great reader. He is survived by his wife and five sons and one daughter. He was a cousin of Dick Fenton, of Atchison. "I never knew a better man," Mr. Fenton said to-day.

The Kansas Chief, Troy, Kansas.

11 Feb 1915, p.1.

About James Eylar.
Potter, Kan., Feb. 8, 1915.

Dear Mr. Calnan:
I read with much regret in last week's Chief of the death of James Eylar, the Doniphan county pioneer. He was a good citizen and a man of more than ordinary intelligence. He was much interested in matters of local history and archaeology. From 12 to 15 years ago, when I was making explorations in the vicinity of Doniphan for evidence of ancient Kansa Indian occupancy, he rendered me much assistance, and to him I am indebted in no little measure for the identification of the site of the famous old Kansa Indian town visited by Bourgmont, in 1724, the results of which are given in my little booklet, "An Old Kansas Indian Town on the Missouri," recently published, and in which Mr. Eylar is accorded due credit.
In the passing of this sterling pioneer citizen Doniphan county has sustained a great loss. Honor to his memory. Yours very truly, George J. Remsburg.


The Leavenworth Post, Leavenworth, Kansas.

8 Nov 1915, p.7.

David H. Sprong of Potter, was at a meeting in Atchison in 1862, which was addressed by John [Jim] Lane....Mr. Sprong says that Lane frequently traveled over the "old military road" in this county...Lane lived at Doniphan in the early days and was a member of the Doniphan town company at one time. He owned a farm adjoining the townsite. He once roade into Atchison with the late James Eylar, of Bendena, and Mr. Eyler [Eylar] did not know who he was until they had almost reached Atchison.

Surprise Wedding

The Atchison Champion, Atchison, Kansas.

16 Apr 1916, p.6.


Alfred Eylar of Bendena and Nellie Brown of Eden Wed.

Alfred Eylar of Bendena and Nellie Brown, from near Eden, were married by Judge J. P. Adams yesterday afternoon. The marriage is to be a surprise to their parents. Both are members of prominent families in their neighborhood. They left for home last night.


The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

1 Aug 1917, p.7.

A Death at Good Intent

A.R. Eylar, a resident of the Good Intent vicinity 44 years, died at his home six miles south of Denton at 6:30 o'clock last night. Death was caused by paralysis, from which he had been ill two years. He was born at Winchester, Adams county, Ky. [Ohio], March 21, 1847, and married Miss Matilda Horner there December 17, 1872. They came to Kansas in March, 1872 [1873]. He is survived by his widow and three children, Calvin LeRoy, Mrs. John Weik and Alfred. Funeral services will be held tomorrow afternoon, the procession leaving the house at 2 o'clock, arriving at the Denton Methodist church at 2:30 o'clock, where the services will be held. The Rev. Mr. Reed, of Everest, pastor of the Denton Methodist church, will officiate.


Harrisburg Telegraph, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

15 Mar 1920, p.4.

New Official at Elliott-Fisher
M. S. Eylar Comes as Vice-President; Had Been Connected With Old Firm

[photo] M. S. Eylar

The Elliott-Fisher Company today announced that M. S. Eylar, who has been general sales manager of the L. C. Smith & Bros. Typewriter Company, for the last nine years, has accepted a position with the company as vice-president in charge of sales.
Very few, if any, in the Office appliance industry are better known than Mr. Eylar. In joining the Elliott-Fisher organization he is really coming back home as he was general sales manager for the Elliott-Hatch Book Typewriter Company from 1897 to 1903. He sold the first machine manufactured by that company.

Pioneer Salesman

When interviewed to-day Mr. Eylar said: "It is not without regret that I left my friends in the L. C. Smith and Bros. organization. The officers and employes of that company are more than business associates to me, but from a purely business standpoint I could not afford to disregard the offered position with Elliott-Fisher. I have watched the development of the Elliott-Fisher Bookkeeping Machine from its inception and am confident that it has a future greater than any office appliance in existence to-day."
Mr. Eylar's entire businees life has been in the office appliance field. He was one of the pioneer salesmen of the Smith Premier Typewriter Company, having joined their sales force shortly after finishing his schooling in 1889. While attending school he learned to operate a typewriter and sensed the great future of the typewriting machine. It was only natural that he began his business career selling typewriters.
Soon after joining the Smith Premier Company he was made manager of their Kansas City branch. Later he became manager of their New York office which position he resigned to become general sales manager for the Elliott-Hatch company.
In 1903 he joined the Underwood Typewriter organization as manager of their New York office. Six months later he was made general sales manager of the Underwood company, which position he held until 1908. The Underwood company experienced their greatest growth and sales during the six years Mr. Eylar was sales manager.

To Bring Family Here

In 1908 the L. C. Smith & Bros. Company secured Mr. Eylar to act as their foreign sales manager with headquarters in London. Three years later he was brought back to the United States and placed in charge of both foreign and domestic sales. This promotion was well earned because under his direction the foreign sales of the company amounted to forty per cent of their entire production.
Mr. Eylar will bring his family to Harrisburg from Syracuse, N. Y., just as soon as housing conditions will permit making the change.

The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

6 Nov 1944, p.2.

Heart Trouble Fatal To Doniphan Farmer

Calvin L. Eylar, 68, who farmed all of his active life in Doniphan county, died at 5:30 o'clock this morning at his home in Lancaster of heart trouble and complications. He had been in failing health for a year.
Funeral services will be conducted at 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Sawin & Douglass chapel with interment in the Denton cemetery.
A son of Aaron and Matilda Eylar, Calvin LeRoy Eylar was born at Bendena April 15, 1878, and was reared in Doniphan county. After his marriage to Miss Ada Powell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Powell of Bendena, September 22, 1913, he farmed in the Denton community. Last April the family removed to Lancaster.
Besides his wife he is survived by two sons, Eugene S. Eylar of the home, and Merle D. Eylar, 318 North Tenth; a brother, Alfred Eylar, Good Intent community, and six grandchildren. A sister, Mrs. Lydia [Lida] Weik, preceded him in death.
Mr. Eylar was known as an industrious man and a good citizen.

World War II

The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

13 Jan 1945, p.7.

Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Eylar of the Good Intent neighborhood received a letter yesterday from their son, Pfc. Edward Eylar, who wrote that he had just taken part in a beach landing and at that time everything was quiet except enemy air raids. Mr. and Mrs. Eylar believe the landing he mentioned was in the Philippines. Pfc. Eylar had been overseas 31 months and has not had a furlough since he was inducted. They also have two other sons in service. Pfc. Leslie Eylar, who is at a rest camp in France after being on the firing line on the western front for several months, and Pvt. Alvin Eylar, who is in India. Leslie recently was awarded the infantry combat badge.


The Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kansas.

6 Jan 1959, p.10.

Alfred L. Eylar Died After Long Illness

After an illness of five years, Alfred Lewis Eylar, 72, died at 7:15 a.m. today at his home half a mile north of St. Louis church in the Good Intent community.
Funeral services will be held at the Stanton chapel at 2 p.m. Thursday, the Rev. Russell E. Dawson of Denton officiating. Burial will be in the Denton cemetery.
He was born on the former Eylar ranch southeast of Denton and was a lifelong resident of Atchison county [after 1936].
On April 15, 1916, he married Miss Nellie Brown, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Jake Brown of Good Intent.
Besides his wife he leaves three sons, Edward and Leslie, route 2, and Alvin, route 4; two daughters, Mrs. James Page, Nortonville, and Mrs. Jerry Dooley, Atchison, and three nephews, Eugene Eylar, Long Beach, Calif.; Ralph Weik and Merle Eylar, both of Atchison.
He was fond of sports, especially hunting, and of music.


  1. [See also "Introduction" for more about Jim Lane during the Civil War.]
  2. [The book, "An Old Kansas Indian Town on the Missouri," by George J. Remsburg, was published c.1911. It is available in digital form from the HathiTrust Digital Library website,]
  3. [The Smith Premier Typewriter Company traded under several different names due to renaming and mergers, including L.C. Smith & Bros. and L.C. Smith & Corona. The company is still in existence as Smith Corona, but it no longer manufactures typewriters.]
  4. [The Elliot-Fisher Company traded under several different names due to renaming and mergers, including Underwood-Elliot-Fisher, and Underwood Corporation. It has been absorbed by Olivetti, an Italian manufacturer of business machines.]
  5. [Samuel's probate records show that his property was the NE1/4 S17 T12N R2W in Oklahoma County, Oklahoma Territory. This is now the southwest corner of NE 50th Street & N Sooner Road, in the outskirts of Oklahoma City.]
  6. [The book, "Family History of Jeremiah Fenton (1764-1841) of Adams County, Ohio and His Descendants", by William B. Brown, 1910, states that Benjamin "became insane from religious excitement and died in an asylum while yet young". He is last found on the 1870 census when he was 42 years old.]
  7. [Even if the names of Joseph's parents had been passed down to the earlier generations, by 1900, the writer would probably have been a great-grandchild of Joseph. Anyone who has done much genealogical research would have likely found out first hand that oral family stories can be dubious after that much time.]