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Part Four - Go West, Young Man


4.1 Thomas Travels to Topeka


A Biographical Sketch of Hon. Thomas M James, Topeka, Kansas, 1883, SHAWNEE COUNTY, Part 27

courtesy of The University of Kansas and the Kansas State Historical Society. This is a verbatim transcript of the original. Errors, addendum and observations are noted within brackets [ ].

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HON. THOMAS M. JAMES, North Topeka, inspector of United States surveys, was born at Sandusky, Erie Co., Ohio, October 10, 1840.[1839]. Remained in his native place until he was sixteen years of age, then entered Oberlin College, leaving that institution while a sophomore.

He left college in 1861, and assisted in raising an infantry company for the One Hundred and Seventeenth Ohio Volunteers, which was consolidated in June, 1862, with the First Ohio Artillery, and Mr. James was made Second Lieutenant of Company B.; promoted in November, 1863, to First Lieutenant of Company D. He continued in service until several months after the close of the war.

Returning to Ohio, he began the study of law, but soon thereafter was obliged to abandon it on account of ill health, and he then went to Illinois, where he remained until he came to Kansas October 16, 1866, locating on the northeast quarter of Section 17 Town 11 Range 16 being in Soldier Township, Shawnee County, where he now resides.

In December, 1868, he was appointed Assistant Internal Revenue Collector, and in 1869 he removed to Topeka, but returned to reside on the farm the following year, holding the office before mentioned, however, until July 1, 1872.

In 1871 he was elected County Treasurer and assumed the duties of that office July 1, 1872. He held that position two terms. Afterwards for two years he served as Deputy Treasurer, retiring from that position in the fall of 1878.

He had been elected a member of the Legislature in November of that year, and served as a member of the Kansas House of Representatives during the session of 1879; afterwards giving his attention to his farming interests, having extensive agricultural and stock interests.

For a short time in 1882 he was interested in mercantile business in North Topeka. [See the James building on north Kansas Avenue in Topeka.]

In November, 1882, he was again elected a member of the Legislature. He has held various township offices, being now treasurer of his township.

He has always been prominently identified with the Republican party, having been a delegate to several State conventions, Congressional conventions, and a member of the Shawnee County Republican Central Committee.

He was appointed inspector of United States surveys March 2, 1882.

Mr. James was married at Kansas City in January, 1870 to Laura A. Wendell, a native of Arrow Rock, Mo. They have three children: David Wendel, Louis Aggasiz, and Thomas Malcolm, Jr. [this was written in 1883. Two children, Edwin and Marriott, were not yet born]


4.2 LEONHARD WENDEL


A Biographical Sketch of Leonard Wendel, Topeka, Kansas, 1883, SHAWNEE COUNTY, Part 37

courtesy of The University of Kansas and the Kansas State Historical Society. This is a verbatim transcript of the original. Errors, addendum and observations are noted within brackets [ ].

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LEONARD WENDEL, farmer, [ Father of Laura Ann Wendel, father-in-law of Thomas M James) ] Section 8, P. O. North Topeka, came to Kansas in 1854, locating where Topeka now stands.

He there established the first bakery and eating stand, remaining two years and then moved to present farm, consisting of 160 acres, seventy acres being in cultivation, the rest timber and grass land. The entire farm is enclosed by a hedge, besides having several wire fences. Has a good orchard, covering eight acres and consisting mostly of apple, though there are other varieties of fruit.

He was born in the village of Kerch Brambach, Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, October 10, 1804, emigrating to America in 1833. He landed at Baltimore and located at Bedford, Pa., where he was married January, 1836 to Dorothea Oul. They have seven children - Ferdinand, George, John, Sophia, Laura, Elizabeth and Louisa. He and his family are members of the Lutheran Church.

[ Read more about this Wendel family. ]





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JAMES, Part 1     JAMES, Part 2A     JAMES, Part 2B     JAMES, Part 2C     JAMES, Part 3     JAMES, Part 5

BEATTY Family     BROCKWAY Family     MIELKE Family     STARK Family     WENDEL Family