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A. H. Buckwalter

                                             Bolton Township, Geuda Springs.
[Note: A Wichita correspondent and Steinberger, editor of the Cowley County Courant, both had the name misspelled, showing “Bookwalter” rather than “Buckwalter.” Have corrected the files that are wrong. MAW]
Bolton Township 1873: Buckwalter, A. H., 43. No wife listed.
Bolton Township 1874: Buckwalter, A. H., 44. No wife listed.
Kansas 1875 Census Bolton Township, Cowley County, March 1, 1875.
Name                           age sex color   Place/birth                Where from
A. H. Buckwalter         44    m    w Pennsylvania.                Arkansas
Rachel Buckwalter  21     f     w      Illinois                     Pennsylvania
Bolton Township 1882: Buckwalter, Abram H., 51; spouse, Mary, 38.
Thanks to Margaret Russell Stallard, I was able to straighten out newspaper files. She had the following to say about Mrs. Mary Buckwalter and other ladies on pages 36-38 of her book entitled Remembering Geuda Springs.
Note: Mrs. Stallard had a photo of the ladies involved with the following caption.
Mrs. H. A. Hite, Mrs. Mary Buckwalter, Mrs. Nancy Seanor, Mrs. Mary Burkey, Mrs. E. J. Barnes, and Mrs. S. L. Ward were among the first city officials in Kansas. Mrs. Barnes was mayor, Mrs. Buckwalter was street commissioner, and Mrs. Ward, Mrs. Burkey, Mrs. Hite, and Mrs. Seanor were members of the city council. Mrs. Seanor was the mother of Mrs. Agnes Coppenbarger, 721 North D Street, Arkansas City, Kansas.
Article by Laura M. Johns that came with photograph.
In 1893, when Geuda Springs was a flourishing health resort with luxury hotels and mineral waters to attract a high class clientele and congressmen and governors were visitors along with thousands of other health and recreation seekers, the women of the town became indignant over civic conditions and decided to do something about it. Not too long before women had taken over the city government of other cities and the nation had fun tossing the story around. Honeywell [Hunnewell] had long been a terminus for cattle droves and the three story hotel there would be filled with roistering cowboys and familiar brawls of that era were not uncommon. Argonia also had a woman mayor in recent years and in each case the town morals improved.
So with characteristic determination, Geuda Springs women took the reins of government, and it was reported by those who lived there at the time that the town was cleared of saloons, gambling dens, boot-legging “establishments” and pool halls. They freed the town of indebtedness and even cleaned and repaired the streets, it was noted, and they placed the city in a condition far in advance of its state at the time they were elected.
One of the council members, years later, reported that there was only one arrest during their term of office, and the entire procedure of cleaning up the town was accomplished with a minimum of disturbance. Women mayors and city officials are no curiosity now, but these women had to be endowed with a maximum of fortitude to serve as public servants in 1893.

During the following five years, eight cities elected women to fill the offices of mayor and council. In 1893, Geuda Springs was the only city to follow this fashion. Mrs. Emma Barnes is mayor, the “councilmen,” as the papers said and as the tickets had it, are Mrs. Mary Buckwalter, Mrs. Malvina B. Hite, Mrs. Mary R. Berkey, Mrs. N. A. Seanor, and Mrs. Angie Ward. The mayor cannot quite be charged with nepotism though her husband is city clerk. He holds the office only temporarily. The mayor had appointed Mr. Roney, the former incumbent of her office, and he had served until he removed from the city.
I was present at one of the regular meetings of the council, and was delighted with the decision and dispatch with which their business was disposed of. They have some troublesome problems to find solutions for, but they will manage with more than the usual faithful carefulness. I saw them compelled to decide a matter which appealed strongly to the tenderness of the womanly nature, but they could pity and be sorry without permitting their judgment to waver.
The mayor is a young woman, the youngest of the board, and would not weigh a hundred pounds. She is sweet faced, soft voiced, and gentle mannered, and is stared at as an anomaly whenever she is introduced as the Mayor of Geuda Springs. She is a compact and most efficient little lady, and keeps her work well at hand. W. C. Barnes, Mayor Barnes’ husband, is editor and publisher of the Geuda Springs Herald. He is at the same time a teacher, and Mrs. Barnes add the duties of Mayor to housekeeping and office work. She prepares three lunches each morning of the school year, one for her husband and one for their eight year old son. When they are gone to school, she picks up the third lunch and goes to the Herald office, where she prepares copy, sets type, scans the exchanges, etc. She is also solicitor and collector for the paper, and withal finds time to do W. C. T. C. and suffrage work.
The women who compose the council are thoughtful and capable. Mrs. Mary Buckwalter is the President. She was the first woman resident of the city; her children the first born here. Geuda Springs is a health resort. Mrs. Buckwalter opened a bath house here a dozen years ago, when the bath house was the only house on the site, and she has watched the growth of the town through all vicissitudes, and thoroughly understands the conditions to be dealt with by the city government.
It is the ambition of this government to secure enforcement of all law, and to rid the city of all disorder and of every place of evil resort. It is evident that the citizens have the utmost faith in their discretion, for the businessmen take the pains to say to them: “Do what you think right, and we will stand by you.”
I have not the pleasure of seeing much of the other members of the council here, but they are obviously women of strength and character, and are discharging the trust reposed in them with conscientious fidelity.

It is believed that this woman government was elected because that was the easiest way for the good men of the place to get certain chestnuts pulled out of the fire. They knew the women would have the nerve to do it. Others assert that the people had in thought the advertisement of Geuda Springs. If so, it was worthwhile, for these waters certainly have wonderful curative qualities. The bath house, a fine brick structure under the charge of Mr. and Mrs. Buckwalter, is well equipped, and invalids here find quiet and rest while drinking the waters and taking the baths. It is a curious thing that Kansas knows so little of the advantages afforded by this place. Here is rest for the overworked, healing for the sick. The drives are beautiful and the scenery fine. Kansans who take weary journeys to distant springs of “healing waters” within a few feet of each other—drink of the “medicine water,” and at the same time see that the face of nature does not change, nor all things good languish, when women take a hand in governmental affairs.
By Laura M. Johns, President K. E. S. A.
                                               FROM THE NEWSPAPERS.
Winfield Courier, September 16, 1875.
This is to certify that we, whose names are hereto sub­scribed, do most heartily recommend for our next County Treasurer, FRANK GALLOTTI, who has for the last year and a half faithfully and satisfactorily performed the duties of said office while acting in the capacity of Deputy; and we do hereby further certify that his character during that time has been such as to fully entitle him to the recommendation. The records of said office kept by him, bears ample testimony of his capability and efficiency. We consider him well qualified to fulfill the duties of said office, and therefore cheerfully recommend him to the voters of Cowley County as well worth of their cordial support, and who, if elected, will most faithfully and systematically perform the duties of said office.
A. H. Buckwalter was one of those who signed the above.
Winfield Courier, March 16, 1876.
The following is a list of jurors drawn for the April term of court: George W. Sharp, H. Holtby, W. W. Higgins, B. F. Wright, Isaac Tousley, James Kerr, A. H. Buckwalter, S. D. Groom, John Jones, J. A. McNown, Charles M. Peters, O. M. Ratts.
Arkansas City Traveler, October 17, 1877.
A meeting of the voters of Bolton Township, regardless of party, was held on the 13th pursuant to appointment. On motion, John Linton was elected chairman and Lyman Herrick secretary. On motion, the following nominations were made: James Sample, Trustee; A. J. Kimmell, Treasurer; A. H. Buckwalter, Clerk; F. C. Davis, Justice of the Peace; John S. Lewis and John W. Brown, Constables. On motion, the meeting then adjourned.
Winfield Courier, May 31, 1877.
Election Fees: A. Buckwalter, $2.00.
Winfield Courier, July 12, 1877.
Clerk of Election: A. H. Buckwalter, $2.00.
Winfield Courier, November 15, 1877.
Bolton—James Sample, Trustee; A. J. Kimmell, Treasurer; A. H. Buckwalter, Clerk; F. C. Davis, Justice; J. S. Lewis, J. W. Brown, Constables.
Arkansas City Traveler, January 9, 1878.
One-fifth of the purchase money required as FIRST PAYMENT, Balance on FIVE YEARS’ TIME.

Below will be found a partial list of our lands and town lots, both improved and unimproved, we have for sale. This property is situated in the most desirable portion of Kansas, the great Arkansas River Valley, and adjacent thereto. The climate in this locality is unsurpassed, and the land is as fertile as any in the West. This portion of Kansas is keeping pace with the civilization of the age in building Railroads, Churches, and School Houses. Come here if you want a very desirable home for a very small amount of money.
On the list was the following:
NW ¼ sec 11, tp 35, S R 3 E. Known as the Buckwalter farm; price $1,500.
Inquire of J. C. McMullen or Jas. Christian, Arkansas City, Kansas.
Winfield Courier, February 14, 1878.
Abram H. Buckwalter to school district No. 69, 1 acre of n. w. qr. sec. 11, tp. 35, r. 3.
Winfield Courier, March 28, 1878.
A. H. Buckwalter to Andrew Thompson, n. w. 11 35 3, 159 acres, $1,100.
Winfield Courier, May 2, 1878. Editorial Page.
CIVIL DOCKET. Third Day. D. Thompson v. A. H. Buckwalter.
Arkansas City Traveler, July 17, 1878.
BOLTON TOWNSHIP, JULY 14, 1878. At a meeting held at the Bland schoolhouse, July 13, for the purpose of making arrangements with D. B. Hartsock to carry our produce down the Arkansas River to Little Rock, Capt. R. Hoffmaster was called to the chair, and A. H. Buckwalter was chosen Secretary.
Arkansas City Traveler, October 2, 1878.
At a Republican meeting in Bolton Township last Thursday, R. A. Thompson was called to the chair and Thomas S. Parvin was chosen secretary. The following officers were then nominated: Trustee, J. M. Sample; Treasurer, A. J. Kimmell; Clerk, A. H. Buckwalter; Justices, T. S. Parvin, J. Linton; Constable, J. Pearson. R. A. Thompson and T. S. Parvin were then elected delegates to the Dexter convention, after which the meeting adjourned.
Arkansas City Traveler, November 17, 1880.
MARRIED. Married, on Thursday, November 11th, 1880, at the residence of Rev. S. B. Fleming, in this city, Mr. Abraham H. Buckwalter and Miss Mary Urquhart, both of Bolton Township.
Arkansas City Traveler, February 1, 1882.
Geuda Springs Items.
The Geuda Springs are still boiling over.
The two-story billiard hall of Messrs. Hahn & Bishop is almost completed.
Mr. Anderson, of Newton, is rapidly improving from an attack of rheumatism.
We have heard a rumor of a $10,000 hotel to be built by a joint stock company, but could not learn the particulars.
Some Winfield parties are now talking strongly of putting up some business houses here. We shall see what we shall see.
The Geuda Springs Co. are shipping their spring water to all parts of the United States, and are receiving flattering reports.

Jacob Musgrove, et. al, of Hunnewell, are putting in a stock of groceries, and will soon build a large two-story business house.
One man from Wichita—we did not learn his name—sends word he will be here tomorrow, and wants to put up a building at once.
Mr. Bixler has commenced to build his residence on block 4, at the Springs, and expects, if the weather is favorable, to commence his business house within two weeks.
Another gentleman, who had tried Eureka Springs for three months for rheumatism without being benefitted, is here now, and has gotten almost well in two weeks—could hardly walk when he came—and is now at work for Mr. Buckwalter. This makes the fifth person cured here who has tried Eureka.
Contracts for 49 new buildings have already been let to be erected on the new town site, and all to be completed by June 1st, 1882. Three are to be large sized boarding houses, or hotels; fifteen of them cottage houses for rent; and the balance business houses or private residences.
A Mr. Roberts, of Ottumwa, Iowa, talks of putting in a newspaper. In fact, April 15th, 1882, will find Geuda Springs booming, as well as boiling over. NO NAME.
Arkansas City Traveler, March 8, 1882.
Load after load of Geuda Springs’ water is hauled to town daily, and retailed on the streets as though it was cider, or something stronger. When Mr. Buckwalter came in last Thursday, a crowd of more than a dozen gathered around his wagon with pitch­ers and jugs to be filled. Every day the water is growing in favor, and before next year we expect to see the water shipped out by the carload, instead of by the barrel, by express.
Cowley County Courant, April 6, 1882. Front Page.
Southern Border of Sunny Kansas.
We give below, says the Wichita Leader, a well written communication from a citizen of Wichita, who has lately taken in Geuda Springs.
ED. LEADER: The G-e-u-d-a Mineral Springs, located near the line of Cowley and Sumner counties at Salt City, are fast devel­oping into a noted health resort and famous watering place. Located as they are in the finest agricultural and stock country in the State, they will eventually be surrounded by an abundance of every product indigenous to a prolific farm, fruit, and stock district. Nature having provided all of the ground-work for this abundance, it only remains for the husbandman, the artist, and the mechanic, to develop it into a paradise of health, beauty, and grandeur. The springs, within themselves, are a curiosity which is claiming the attention of scientific and chemical experts to develop what the early settler might well have sought as the “Fountain of Youth,” and the fact of its being surrounded by so many other natural advantages would probably poetically refer to it the following couplet:
Of all wise gifts of “good things,”
The best of all is G-e-u-d-a Springs.

But your readers will probably prefer a description of the Springs. They are seven in number, located in a radius of twenty feet, and—as singular as the assertion may appear—all contain­ing a distinguishing difference of taste. They are composed of eleven constituent parts, or remedial agents, strongly charged with carbolic acid gas. Around these springs is an artificial stone wall three or four feet high, with an opening at one side where the water all flows through a single pipe, forming what is known as the “combination.” This flows beneath the hotel and bathrooms, where it is pumped up and heated for bathing purposes. Near this is the salt lake from which considerable salt has been manufactured. These springs have but recently come into the hands of a company by whom it is being developed into one of the “booming little cities” in this “booming State.” New business houses and residences are going up as if by magic, but still the demand cannot be supplied fast enough to satisfy those who eagerly seek the benefits of its waters as remedial agents. Dozens of houses are under way, and dozens more are under con­tract, while dozens of workmen are pushing the work, and dozens of teamsters are provid­ing the material for new buildings.
James Stiner has just completed, and is now occupying, a neat and cosy little hotel building. Dr. C. Perry has ten houses completed for residents, and has contract for ten more, while a number of other parties are securing locations, putting in foundations, and bringing the lumber to the grounds. The hotel proper is under the efficient control of A. H. Buckwalter, and Hon. C. R. Mitchell is President of the Town Company. Either of the above gentlemen will be glad to furnish other desired information.
It is only seven miles from here to the Nation, where there is plenty of game, timber, etc., and where stock men have herded their entire winter without additional feed.
Excellent opportunities are offered to parties with capi­tal—who desire to build—lots being furnished free to those who agree to put up good buildings. But all of the free lots will soon be taken at the rate at which they are going off, and from this on, the town will be built up with a rush. If desired, I may write again soon. Yours, OCCASIONAL.
Cowley County Courant, April 6, 1882.
A Geuda correspondent of the Arkansas City Democrat venti­lates himself to no small extent, and winds up his letter with the information that Mr. Mitchell has sold his property in Arkansas City, and is going to move to Geuda Springs.
That Foss is building a large store to be rented to F. L. Davis, who intends to fill it with groceries.
That Mart Bixler is about ready to move into his new store at Geuda.
That Wm. Berkey has a new awning in front of his store. Take notice ye loafers.
That Foss has gone to east St. Louis after thoroughbred cattle; also is going to bring a fine Percheron Norman stallion.
That Hall, Axley, Neer, and Walker have taken a trip to the Cherokee Nation, for the purpose of buying ponies.
That there is soon to be an I. O. O. F. Lodge instituted at Geuda Springs.
That the hotel is going up for a certainty.
That there is more building at Geuda Springs than any town in Southern Kansas.
That winter wheat is looking better than ever before at this time of the year.
That Miss Una Royal and Lina Snyder are going to attend the Manhattan College another three months.
That Dr. Vawter is looking toward Geuda Springs with a view of locating permanently.

That Mr. Marshall, of Leavenworth, and one of the Geuda Springs Town Company members, proposes to build a summer resi­dence at Geuda Springs.
That Dr. Perry’s houses are almost completed and ready for occupancy.
BIRTH. That they have a new boarder at the bath house. It’s a girl and Buckwalter is the happy man. He sets up the cigars.
That ’tis an awfully bad year for candidates, and a good one for snakes, on account of the scarcity of “St. John’s amendment.”
That it is a good joke to buy one of those double strength lamp chimneys to take home and throw into the house for your wife. She thinks it will break, “you know,” and gives a scream, and, the chimney hits the stove leg, well, she calls you an old soap keg, and you go and put the team away, get kicked in the abdomen by a mule, trying to figure out where that joke came in. The next time you buy, the cheap ones are good enough, and then you ain’t liable to play jokes on your wife with that kind.
That Jake Musgrove is set up ready for business. Groceries as cheap as anywhere in Kansas.
That Patterson, the butcher, is going to tear down the old Salt City saloon building, move it to the springs, and construct a two-story house out of it.
That T. C. Mills is about to sell his three-year-old colt to Wm. Thompson, for $300; pretty good price for a colt.
That a party of young folks got badly fooled; went into the country to attend a supper by invitation, went early, stayed late, no supper, went home down in the mouth, and also in the region of the digestive organ.
Cowley County Courant, May 18, 1882.
THE COURANT family loaded itself into one of Schofield & Keck’s best rigs Sunday morning, and made what is sometimes termed a flying trip to the Geuda Springs. We won’t say “far famed,” “world renowned,” “justly celebrated,” for that would not be strictly accurate, and as the truth is all we desire to tell, the facts must be adhered to.
The ride to the Springs on a beautiful morning like yester­day is simply delightful. The road from the time you leave the livery barn, till the springs are reached, is as near perfection as it well can be, stretching as it does, across what we will risk to say, is the most beautiful township in Kansas. Cowley County, in our judgment, is one of the best looking counties in the state, and Beaver township is certainly very near if not quite the garden spot of the county. There are no hills to speak of, and the little streams are all bridged and unless it is immediately after a heavy rain, there is no more delightful drive in the west. The wheat is now headed and is of such uniform height and advancement, and so limitless in acreage, that it requires but little imagination to make it a shoreless green sea. But we must hasten to the Springs.

The Arkansas River is crossed on a good ferry boat, in charge of a careful boatman. Let us stop for a moment on this raging Arkansas, or as Vinnie Beckett would say: “this big rolling muddy.” We have had considerable acquaintance with this river for a number of years. So much so, that we are not afraid of being laughed at on the score of total ignorance on the subject. Thousands of dollars have been squandered—that’s the word—in making surveys of the stream by “competent engi­neers.” These surveys invariably follow the bed of the river on the old theory that nature knows what is best for us, which she don’t. The cutting across of miles of bend here and there, the advantage of crowding that body of water into a new and narrower channel never seems to have entered the “competent engineer’s” mind. The only competency seeming to be requisite was the ability to get through with the appropriation by the time Congress met again. But we are at the Springs. Scores of well dressed men and women, most of them for the first time, tasting this rare, mysterious, and to them not altogether pleasant beverage are here before us. It is considerable amusement to the old coons sitting around to watch the tasting process, especially the other sex, who for some unaccountable reason arrogate to themselves all the squeamishness extant. True, we couldn’t expect that seventeen year old girl to roll it down as Fritz does his beer, nor guggle it as Pat would his whiskey; but we can’t see any use in making such fearful grimaces, walling the eyes like a dying calf and wriggling the body like an eel, to get the blessed water down, when you can cut a basket full of slimy, boiled lettuce, two quarts of raw onions, and a skillet full of rotten tomatoes mixed with rancid butter without making a solitary wrinkle in your pretty face.
There are seven different springs or hydrants, each shooting up a different kind of water. A qualitative analysis, shows Bi-Carbonate of Soda, Bi-Carbonate of Iron, Bi-Carbonate of Calcium, Sulphate of Ammonia, Sulphate of Magnesia, Chloride of Sodium, Chloride of Potassium, Iodide of Sodium, Bromide of Potassium, Sulphur, and Silica. In addition to these constituents, the waters are charged with Carbonic Acid Gas. There is no question as to the healing properties of this water.
Geuda, now let us get this name right, for few can, or do pronounce it. “G” is sounded hard, and “e” as in double “e” and pronounced as in McGee, and the whole is simply Gee-u-da. It is an Indian word and signifies healing.
There is a large and commodious bath house connected with the springs, where hot or cold baths can be had for thirty-five cents. It is presided over by Mr. Buckwalter, an old friend; who is just the man for the place.
There are some fifty houses already built and occupied, mostly by those who are there for their health. It might be insinuated here that the surroundings of these springs conduce to the rapid recovery of the indisposed. The country is high, dry, and beautifully undulating, like mighty ocean billows, on three sides, while the Arkansas River, salt lakes, and numerous streams, clear as crystal, bounds the town on the fourth.
The air from so much medication, is invigorating and health­ful. So, with the undoubted healing qualities of the waters, the facilities for bathing, the healthy atmosphere, coupled with the beautiful scenery, hunting, fishing, and boating, the patient is bound to get well if there is any vitality left for nature to work on.
The hotel accommoda­tions are not of the best. In fact, we might say that the eating part, at least that part introduced to us, was decidedly bad. There was plenty of it, and, in its day, had been good enough, but it seemed to have been just through a sweating process, and then drowned in old grease or still older butter, which left a kind of slimy, milky way across everything on the table. There was one redeeming dish on the table that we saw, radishes, and they would undoubtedly have been spoiled had they been washed.

We suppose now, that the next time we visit the springs we will have something to write about. The art of catering success­fully to the ordinary guest is no mean accom­plishment. It is not everybody who has run a two cent bakery and lunch room who can please the palate of the health seeker at a fashionable watering place.
Geuda needs a good, first class hotel, and needs it bad, and with such an overseer as Charley Harter, of the Brettun, while there may not be millions in it, there is undoubtedly money in it.
Of course, we took a bath, and it hasn’t hurt us so far. The drive home was a delightful one, and we vowed to avail ourselves of the very next opportunity to go again. To those who are unacquaint­ed, we would say that Winfield is the place to start from, as strangers can find a daily hack line to and from the springs, and the best and smoothest roads, through a beautiful and highly improved country, making it a luxury to ride over.
Arkansas City Traveler, December 3, 1884.
A. H. Buckwalter, of Geuda Springs, registered at the Leland Tuesday.
Arkansas City Traveler, December 10, 1884.
A. H. Buckwalter, of Geuda Springs, was in town Friday.
Arkansas City Traveler, December 10, 1884.
Messrs. Phelps & Buckwalter, of Geuda Springs, were in our city last week, making arrangements for the delivery of mineral water to our people throughout the winter. They will deliver at least once a week, and oftener, if necessary, at five cents per gallon. Special prices for large quantities. Orders may be left at E. D. Eddy’s drug store or addressed to them at Geuda.
Arkansas City Traveler, February 4, 1885.
A. H. Buckwalter waded through our streets Saturday.
Arkansas City Republican, Saturday, June 27, 1885.
The Storm at Geuda Last Friday Night. About two o’clock this morning the clouds seemed to gather in all directions to one common center, in and around Geuda Springs. Such flashes of lightning and peals of thunder were never seen or heard of in this vicinity before. The heavens seemed perfectly full of electricity. There was but little rain fell until after daylight this morning, when it literally poured out for about two or three hours and there must have undoubtedly been a water spout two or three miles above here as Salt Creek rose ten feet in about two hours. The water rose to 4½ feet above the lower floor of C. R. Mitchell’s house. The families of Mr. Buckwalter, Mr. McCarren, and Mr. Cadle were carried out on horses and on men’s backs. The damages will be from $500 to $1,000, besides a great amount of damage done to wheat standing in the shock. H. H. Bumgardner lost one very fine mule by lightning, and Mr. Brenhart a cow which was tied to a rope on some low ground and was drowned. Geuda Herald.
[Above item was the last found concerning A. H. Buckwalter.]



Cowley County Historical Society Museum