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James G. Utt

                                                          Cedar Township.
[FALL 1871]         PAGE 471.
JAMES G. UTT arrived in Cowley County, Kansas, in the fall of 1871; he was a prominent farmer of Cedar Township, and lived in Lookout Valley, where he owned 320 acres of fine farming land. Mr. Utt was born January 22, 1838, in Jersey County, then a part of Greene County, Illinois, a son of Jacob and Mary (Swan) Utt.
His father, Jacob Utt, was of German descent, and was born in Pennsylvania in 1809—the year of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. He went from Ohio west, to Illinois, when that state was a territory, and died at Parsons, Kansas, on Christmas morning, 1890, aged 87. The ancestors of the family came from Germany, and became established in Pennsylvania. The great-grandfather of James G. Utt, and two of his brothers, served in the Revolutionary War, and his grandfather and one brother served in the War of 1812. He had three uncles in the Mexican War, and remembers their return from service. Four of his brothers went to California in 1849, and when the Civil War broke out, they enlisted in defense of the Union. Jacob Utt was united in marriage to Mary Swan, who was born in Tennessee about 1810, and was probably a relative of ex-Governor Swan, of that state. She died in Parsons, Kansas, in 1878. Ten children were born to bless their union, namely: James G.; a son, who died in infancy; Kate Ann (Dodson), of Denver, Colorado; Reuben, who was in the army during the Civil War, and in 1901 was residing at Pittsfield, Illinois; Mattie (Emerson), of Illinois; Mary, of Parsons, Kansas; George, who was killed at the battle of Kenesaw Mountain; Sophia (Shambaugh), wife of a Methodist minister, in Nebraska; Sarah (Drew), a widow whose husband died on Christmas Day, 1900, and who lived in Parsons, Kansas; and Winfield Scott, who died at Parsons, Kansas.
James G. Utt attended the common schools of Illinois, and began to work at the age of fourteen years. During the war he remained at home and cared for the family, as all could not go to the front. He afterward spent seven or eight years in the lead mines of Northern Illinois and Wisconsin.
In 1871, with his wife and six children, he drove through to Cowley County, Kansas, accompanied by another family, which located in Chautauqua County. He camped on his present home farm about October 6, 1871, and encountered the heaviest rainstorm he ever witnessed. The land in Cedar Township on which he located, in section 16, township 34, range 8 east, was school land, and was appraised at $3 per acre. Owing to a very high hill nearby, known as Lookout Mountain, the valley, for three miles to the southwest and east, was known as Lookout Valley, and in this he located.
[Mr. O. C. Sartin, who married Anna Cloyd, was the first settler in this valley, and resided but a half mile distant; in the early days he was a trapper and hunter, but his present vocation is that of a minister. Part of this information on Sartin taken from HERITAGE.]

Mr. Utt took the south half of the south half of section 16, and later purchased the north half of the south half of the same section, from Amos Gent and Mr. Baton, making him the owner of the entire south half of the section. He came to Cowley County a poor man, and his first years here were marked by unceasing toil. He built the front part of his present house of native lumber, which was sawed in a mill owned by Mr. Pollard, who in 1901 was living in Cedar Vale. The house was 16 by 24 feet in dimensions, which was considered large in those days. Into this, the family moved before the roof was put on. The shingles were made of native lumber, and were sawed by Mr. Phelps, in Otter Township. They were made by hand, and Mr. Utt assisted in the work. The house in time was greatly enlarged and well arranged.
Mr. Utt set out an orchard in 1872--the first orchard in the valley--buying the trees for 50 cents apiece, at Oswego. Although there was no timber on the place when he took it, a considerable amount were grown and the cottonwood trees supplied fuel from 1891 to 1901. Mr. Utt built a large amount of stone fence in 1873, 1874, and 1875, of stones picked up on the farm. He also set out about three-fourths of a mile of hedge, and the remainder of the farm was well fenced with wire. He began raising wheat in the fall of 1872, sowing at that time 15 acres. He broke the land with oxen, for which he traded his horses, using the oxen until 1874. He broke 40 acres, of his own, the first year, and also considerable land for his neighbors. The early settlers were very sociable and often made trips to town together, returning with freight for country stores, etc. All the settlers were then engaged in freighting, more or less, as it was about the only way in which to make any money.
Mr. Utt later engaged in mixed farming, raising corn, wheat, oats, alfalfa, and Kaffir corn, in rotation. He raised cattle and hogs each year.
Mr. Utt married, before the war, Mary Randle, who was born in Jersey County, Illinois, in June 1838. She was a daughter of James G. and Jane (White) Randle. Her father was from North Carolina, and died in 1879, aged 70. Her mother died in 1876, aged 71. Mr. and Mrs. Randle had the following children: Joseph, who lived half a mile east of James G. Utt’s place, just across the county line; Mary; Susie, deceased; and Henry N., who resided at Hillsboro, Illinois, and was county treasurer of Montgomery County.
Mr. and Mrs. James G. Utt became parents of 11 children: Delia Jane, deceased; William H., who lived north of Cedar Vale; George, who lived at home in 1901; James, of Harvey County, Kansas; Clara, who died at the age of four years; Bert, who lived in Harvey County, Kansas; Walter J., who lived near his parents and was married, and had one son, Adrian; Charles R., who lived at home; Jennie, who also was living at home; India (Childers), who lived in Chautauqua County, Kansas, and had two children, Guy and Mildred Childers; and John L., who was living at home.
Mr. Utt became an Odd Fellow in 1863, at Elsah, Illinois, and in 1901 was a member of Lodge No. 151, at Cedar Vale. Mr. Utt was a member of the Rebekahs. Of their sons, Walter was a member of the I. O. O. F.; Charles, of the Woodmen of the World; William H., of the Woodmen of the World; and Bert, of the Fraternal Aid Society.
Politically, Mr. James G. Utt was always a Republican, and had served as clerk of school district No. 83 for eighteen or twenty years. He took the United States census for the southeastern part of Cowley County in 1880, 1890, and in 1900.
Religiously, Mr. Utt favored the Baptist church.
First found in Otter Township:
Otter Township 1873: James G. Utt; spouse, Mary E. Ages not given.


Kansas 1875 Census Otter Township, Cowley County, March 1, 1875.
Name                     age sex color   Place/birth        Where from
James G. Utt          38    m    w       Illinois               Illinois
Mary E. Utt            37     f     w            Illinois               Illinois
W. H. Utt               15    m    w       Illinois               Illinois
G. E. Utt                12    m    w       Illinois               Illinois
James Utt               10    m    w       Illinois               Illinois
Birty Utt                   5    m    w       Illinois               Illinois
Walter Utt                2    m    w       Illinois               Illinois
Infant Utt             10m    m    w       Kansas
Cedar Township 1879: James Utt, 41; spouse, M. E., 41.
Cedar Township 1880: James Utt, 43; spouse, Mary E., 43.
Cedar Township 1882: James Utt, 45; spouse, Mary E., 45.
                                               FROM THE NEWSPAPERS.
Winfield Courier, Thursday, November 13, 1873.
Petition of A. A. Mills for county road was granted with E. H. Boyer, James Utt, and G. W. Gordenhein appointed as viewers. Survey ordered Dec. 1st, 1873.
Winfield Courier, May 31, 1877.
Election Fee: James G. Utt, $2.00.
Winfield Courier, September 27, 1877.
Committee on credentials, W. P. Hackney, H. H. Siverd, James Utt, G. W. Herbert, and Daniel Maher.
Otter Township Delegates: J. J. Smith, Jas. Utt.
Winfield Courier, October 3, 1878.
The Representative Convention of the 89th District met at Dexter at 2 o’clock p.m., Saturday, September 28th, pursuant to the call.
On motion, the chair appointed a committee on credentials consisting of H. L. C. Gilstrap, James Utt, and Mr. Ketcham.
Winfield Courier, September 11, 1879.
Committee on credentials reported the following named delegates entitled to vote in this convention; which report was adopted.
Cedar: J. P. Gregg, James H. Utt, H. C. Fisher.
One of the members of the county central committee:
Township               Member                 P. O.
Cedar                     James Utt               Cedarvale
Note: Cedarvale later became known as Cedar Vale.
Winfield Courier, June 3, 1880.

The Census Enumerators are hard at work. The following is the list of districts and Enumerators of Cowley County.
171 Jas. Utt, Cedar and Otter Townships.
Winfield Courier, August 12, 1880.
The duty of feeding the hungry horde of Representative makers which assembled at Dexter last Saturday fell to O. P. Darst, and right royally did he treat them. It was truly gratifying to see Jim Utt and Will Mowry stow away fried chicken and other dainties. If Dexter isn’t visited by a famine, it will not be their fault.
Winfield Courier, November 11, 1880.
The following are the names of the enterprising citizens who brought in the returns from different townships on the night after the election.
Cedar:  James Utt from both precincts. He rode 35 miles in 3½ hours.
Winfield Courier, December 23, 1880.
James Utt, of Cedar township, was in town Friday. He thinks he has got a coal vein under his farm and proposes to investi­gate. He is wintering 1500 sheep.
Winfield Courier, December 23, 1880.
James Utt dropped in to see us Friday. He comes from near G. W. Childers’s coal mine and reports that they are still taking from it rapidly. He has used some of the coal and pronounces it first-class.
Winfield Courier, July 28, 1881.
A large number of the Soldiers met in the Hall Saturday afternoon to consider the ways and means of organization. Mr. C. M. Wood was chosen President and Jacob Nixon, secretary. The following motion was offered, and prevailed: “That townships and wards hold local meetings the 13th of August, and a committee meeting at the opera house August 10th at 10 o’clock a.m., to perfect arrangements for the ‘Old Soldier Reunion to be held October 7th and 8th.’” It was then moved and carried that a committee of one from each township be appointed to make all necessary arrangements in the townships and wards. The following persons were appointed as said committee.
James Utt of Cedar Township was a member of the committee.
Winfield Courier, June 22, 1882.
Jim Utt and Mr. Joseph Reid, of Cedar, were over Friday and gave the COURIER a pleasant call. Jim hasn’t been over before for about a year and his time was largely taken up shaking hands all around.
Winfield Courier, August 10, 1882.
Committee:—Rules and order of business: H. E. Asp, D. P. Marshall, J. B. Nipp, James Utt, W. J. Wilson, P. T. Walton, Barney Shriver.
Delegates entitled to seats. Cedar: James Utt, C. E. Hale.
James Utt and C. E. Hale got left by the gentleman who brought them over and the prospect of a thirty mile walk was dispelled by Senator Hackney, who got a conveyance and carried them over.
Winfield Courier, October 19, 1882.

Joseph Randle of Illinois is visiting his sister, Mrs. James Utt of Cedar Township. He was in town Saturday with Mr. Utt and expressed his astonishment at finding so fine a town and so fine a country in a place so recently inhabited only by Indians and wild animals.
Winfield Courier, May 10, 1883.
                                                              Fair Meeting.
A mass meeting of farmers was held in the Opera House Saturday afternoon to consider the Fair question. A goodly number of farmers from every part of the county were present. W. J. Millspaugh, of Vernon, was elected chairman and S. P. Strong, of Rock, secretary. The report of the committee on soliciting subscriptions to the stock reported four thousand eight hundred dollars taken. The committee was then increased by the following additions, one in each township.
James Utt from Cedar Township was named as one of the members of this committee.
The Secretary was instructed to prepare and forward to each of the township committee blank subscription lists, with the request that they circulate them at once. This committee was instructed to report with the lists at a public meeting in the Hall at 2 o’clock, May 19, when all who have subscribed to the stock are requested to be present and form a permanent organization.
Winfield Courier, December 6, 1883.
The following is the list of jurors drawn for the January 1884 term of district court.
Henry Chitwood, Rock; John M. Smiley, D. G. Lewis, and G. L. Kirkpatrick, Creswell; R. Combs, Vernon; A. T. Cooper, Bolton; J. W. Elkins, Silver Creek; Adam Walck, Maple; J. A. Sanborn, Windsor; Andrew Harvey, Liberty; James Utt, Cedar; Henry Glaves, Harvey.
Winfield Courier, February 21, 1884.
REGULAR VENIRE. Henry Chitwood, John M. Smiley, R. D. Combs, D. G. Lewis, A. T. Cooper, J. W. Elkins, Adam Walck, J. A. Sanborn, Andrew Haney, James Utt.
Winfield Courier, April 10, 1884.
James Utt Senior is cogitating in his mind which would be the better thing, the Presidency or fireman on a three foot engine that could run “all the way” to Winfield and return in one whole day. Someone help him before there is trouble, please.
Winfield Courier, July 17, 1884.
T. H. Aley and Jim Utt were over from Otter Township Friday, and reported that the appearance of the D. M. & A. engineering corps in the vicinity of Cedarvale has created quite a stir. It is said that the Cedarvale depot was located the other day on Ed. Hewins’ place, just south of the town.
Winfield Courier, July 17, 1884.
The chair appointed the following committees.
Permanent organization and rules: M. T. Armstrong, W. White, Evans James, J. R. Sumpter, Jas. Utt.
CEDAR. Delegates: James Utt, Joseph Reid, M. L. Houser. Alternates: None.
                                          SEDAN JOTTINGS. — “JASPER.”

Winfield Courier, October 2, 1884.
Your correspondent paid a visit to eastern Cowley lately. Everybody seemed to be rejoicing that Jasper’s racket was no longer heard in the land. Therefore, I “hop to the front” with the following.
That Jim Utt is happy, and that four pairs of twins have registered in Lookout Valley in the last six weeks.
Winfield Courier, December 25, 1884.
Jim Utt has a lame wrist, caused doubtless by spanking those devoted triplets.
Winfield Courier, Thursday, January 29, 1885.
Road of M. L. Hauser et al, Cedar township; commencing sw cor sec 16, township 34, r 8 east; running thence w ½ mile; thence s about ¼ mile; thence s to section line, there to intersect with S. C. Winton County road; also to vacate so much of S C Winton road, commencing at point of ending of above petitioned road; thence e and ne to where S C Winton road crosses a line of sec 16, township 34, range 8 e; also to vacate the Jas. Utt county road running s w from place of beginning of above petitioned road. A. H. Smith, John Wallace and F. M. Osborn, viewers, and county surveyor will meet, give all parties a hearing and survey said road on March 17, 1885, commencing at 10 a.m.
Winfield Courier, Thursday, July 16, 1885.
R. T. Wells, with A. A. Mills, James Utt, and David Kantz, viewers, granted. The County Clerk was ordered to purchase 100 copies of State road laws for use of county.
Winfield Courier, Thursday, July 30, 1885.
The following petit jurors have been drawn to serve at September term of District Court: Fred Arnold, Walnut; Josiah Houser, Maple; Fred Hoobler, Silverdale; James Utt, Cedar; S. E. Davis, Creswell; H. C. Carter, Liberty; J. H. Bowman, Walnut; James Conrad, Sheridan; J. R. Taylor, Vernon; William Hall, Harvey; J. H. Aley, Otter; J. D. Maurer, Dexter.
                                                    OTTER. “OTTERITE.”
Winfield Courier, Thursday, September 17, 1885.
Jim Utt could be drawn on the jury.


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