October 28, 1904
Through "Kentucky Settlement" Our People Are Showing Their Mettle.
Blackford, Ky., Oct. 24, 1904.--EDITOR RECORD:--We are at home again, after making a tour through the state of Kansas, and with the hope many good people who read the contents of THE CRITTENDEN RECKORD [sic] may, with a certain degree of satisfaction, peruse these items, we shall endeavor to write something concerning the "Kentucky Settlement" in Phillips county, Kansas, Sheridan county, Kansas, Decater [sic] county, Kansas, etc., but especially the soforth.
The "Kentucky Settlement" is in the northeastern part of Phillips county and is composed of ex-Kentuckians who were former citizens of Crittenden and Caldwell counties in Kentucky. The Kentuckians and their decendants [sic] are too numerous to remember the names of all of them, but the most familiar names are the following: Alexander, Blackburn, Brantley, Bugg, Cannon, Crider, Farmer, Fralick, Hillyard, Jacobs, McCain, McDowell, Morse, Paris, Thomasson, Wilson, etc.
Among the many farmers of Phillips county, who have made it pay by attending strictly to business, are the following Kentuckians[:] F. B. Cannon, J. B. Moss, A. A. Hillyard, John Jacobs and various others. The worth of those distinguished former Kentuckians but now Kansans is estimated from ten to fifty thousand dollars.
Phillipsburg, the county seat of Phillips county, is centrally located on the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific railroads, and the transportation facilities are hard to beat.
The important information that we gained and the pleasant time that we spent, by being intimately associated with A. A. Hillyard, J. G. McCain, F. B. Cannon and others, while in Phillips county, English words are inadequate to express.
When we made our advent into Sheridan county, we were met at Selden by W. D. (Bud) Brantley and Sherman and [sic] Woodall, two former Kentuckians whose courtesy, sociability and hospitality are unsurpassed. They soon equipped a conveyance--Brantley furnishing two horses and Woodall a surrey--we spent two days driving over the level country and seeing the farmers, towns, jack rabbits, prairie chickens, ground-squirrels, etc. While making this drive we saw the families of two or more former Kentuckians, T. H. Carter and J. A. Hilliyard [sic]. We spent one night with Mr. Hillyard, partook of his hospitalities, talked about the country, and had a general good time. We also heard of other Kentuckians who reside in Sheridan county, whose names are Allen, Asbridge, Beckner, Clift, Morse, Towery and Wilson. The time we spend in Sheridan county county [sic] was brief as well as pleasant, and what we said and the things we saw and did, and the jolly time we--Brantley, Woodall and the writer--had, time and space forbids us relating.
Decater [sic] county is in the northern tier and the third from the west line of the state; it is thirty miles square, with rich, productive soil, pure water and a healthful atmosphere, choice lands, a live, go-ahead people, two railroads, three newspapers, two banks, good public school houses in which a term of from six to nine months school is taught annually and a high school at Oberlin, the county seat, where a finished education can be had. Located as it is, we have reasons to believe that Decater [sic] county bids fair to be among the leading counties in the northwestern part of the state. When looking over the various counties of Kansas, should you desire to invest in real estate, do no not [sic] fail to see Decater [sic] county, for good farm lands can be bought from $5 to $30 per acre, according to location and improvements.
The state of Kansas is all right for we have been there. It has churches, schools, railroads, banks, posts, lodges and all kinds of enterprises imaginable that may be found on the face of God's green earth. The inhabitants of Kansas are a live, up-to-date, go-ahead people and have ways and customs that seem somewhat peculiar to a person who lives in a southern state, yet at the same time, all fair-minded and healthy-brained citizens of the Unites States, who are willing to "Do unto others as they wish others to do unto them," can not do otherwise than readily acquiesce, and cheerfully say: "Let the good work begun continue," and may the time soon come when the good people of other states may see their duty and willingness to do it.
When a person goes to the state of Kansas, it is immaterial with the good people of the "Sunflower State," whether immigrants can track their ancestral pedigree back to the Pilgrims who came across the Atlantic on the May Flower or to a gang of pedestrians who came over across the Isthmus of Panama from South America or to any other noted race or place, these things are not considdred [sic], but the all-important factor in the case of the "new comer" is--Is he the right kind of material? Does his daily deportment render him worthy and well qualified for business: If so, come among us and abide with us. Should the "new comer" prove to be a regular egotistical, selfish, over-rated "ignoramus," he soon finds out that he is among people who do not tolerate that kind of "being" and his sojourn in Kansas does not last much longer than a "June frost."
Well, yes, we came by St. Louis to see the sights at the World's Fair and shall never regret the time nor the price that we spent while viewing the immense objects that are exhibited at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition.
We could write ten more pages telling of Kansas and the World's Fair and then not be half through, but for lack of time we quit to go and see a sick baby.
Yours from old Webster,
JOHN L. REYNOLDS, M. D.
Source: Crittenden Record. (Marion, Ky.) 1904-1907, October 28, 1904, Image 6 - Chronicling America - The Library of Congress.
[My comments are in brackets.]