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Benjamin Bennett

The March 1, 1875 census reported:
Benjamin Bennett          34  m   w         Ohio           Ohio
Mary Bennett               36  f    w         Indiana Missouri
Mabel Bennett          7  f    w         Kansas
He is written about in the 1901 Biographic record of Cowley County.
[SPRING 1871]           PAGE 401
BENJAMIN BENNETT, a successful farmer of Bolton Township, Cowley County, Kansas, located in the southwest quarter of section 12, township 35, range 4 east, where he lived since the spring of 1871.
Mr. Bennett was born in Ross County, Ohio, in 1843. His parents were Eleven and Martha (Hughes) Bennett. His father, born in Pennsylvania, died when Benjamin was four years old. His mother, who was of Irish descent, died when he was seven years of age. He was one of two children, his sister, Fannie, being the wife of Joseph Stephenson, of Ohio.
Benjamin Bennett was thus thrown upon the world without parental care, at an early age, and, as he did not have a guardian, the property left him by his father and mother was eventually lost. His education advantages were limited, as there were only subscription schools, and he could not afford to attend them. He remained in Ohio until the spring of 1860, when, with a family named Harper, he located at Salina, Saline County, Kansas. In 1863 he went to Leavenworth County, Kansas, where he worked out at farming, making his home there until 1866. In 1864 he enlisted in Company B, 19th Reg., Kans. Vol. Cav., and was in Price's raid, serving also in Missouri one year. The officers under whom he served were Gen. Grant, of Leavenworth, Kansas; Maj. Smith, Capt. McCune, Lt. Hamby, and Sgt. Leehardt. Although eligible, he never became a member of the G. A. R. 
He returned to Ohio in 1866, and married Margaret Pontius, who soon afterward, died of quick consumption. He remained in Ohio for three years. He returned to Leavenworth County, Kansas, in 1869. There he married Mary E. Hanson, a native of Indiana. His second wife died July 8, 1896. Only one daughter, Mabel, survived.
In the spring of 1871 Mr. Bennett settled in Cowley County, Kansas, and took up his claim in Bolton Township. Mr. Bennett first built a log cabin, 12 by 14 feet in size, on the north side of the claim, in which he resided for several years, and then replaced it with a frame house, measuring 12 by 14 feet. This was later enlarged, and removed to the south side of the farm, where it was made into an L-shaped house, 16 by 32 feet. The dwelling was destroyed by a tornado June 19, 1891; other buildings, as well as trees, were badly damaged. Mr. Bennett then constructed a house, 30 by 32 feet, comfortable in size and conveniently arranged.

When he settled on his claim in 1871, Mr. Bennett brought with him a span of mules, and by changing work with his neighbors, he got the prairie land broken and planted it to grain. He later continued to raise grain, but leased a part of his farm. He had two acres of orchard, producing apples, peaches, and all kinds of fruits. At first there was only a spring upon the property; later, there was a creek running from the southwest corner to the middle of the west side of the farm. There was some natural timber, consisting of box-elder, walnut, and pecan, in addition to which Mr. Bennett set out a grove of cottonwoods, from which he had enough lumber sawed to complete one building. He had five acres of jack oaks on the northeast corner.
Bennett's daughter, Mabel, born October 13, 1874, in Cowley County, entered the Arkansas City High School, but due to ill health did not graduate.
Mr. Bennett was a charter member of Bolton Grange and a Republican. He was road overseer for ten years. He was a member of the Christian church.


Cowley County Historical Society Museum