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Below is a family biography included in The History of Cherokee County, Kansas included within the History of Kansas by William G. Cutler, published by A. T. Andreas, 1883.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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ABIEL SAMUEL DENNISON, Sheriff of Cherokee County, Kan., was born November 24, 1828, in the town of Floyd, Oneida County, N. Y. Received a common-school education, and at the age of seventeen became a teacher in his native State; taught four years, read medicine two years, attending lectures one term at the Albany Medical College; then going then going to New Orleans in 1851, where he taught mathematics in the Franklin High School one year, and then engaged in the drug business two years. In 1854, his health failing, he concluded to adopt an outdoor business, and engaged in contracting on the construction of railroads and followed that occupation for eight years, working on railroads in Missouri, Illinois, Alabama and Mississippi. The war of the rebellion found him engaged on the Mobile & Ohio Railroad, in the State of Mississippi, and being a strong Union man, he was compelled to leave that State, and then came as a refugee to Washington County, Ill., settled on the raw prairie and opened and improved a farm. In November, 1865, he came to Kansas, stopped at Lawrence, and worked at carpentering in Lawrence and Topeka. In January, 1867, he came to Baxter Springs, and soon thereafter engaged in the drug business, and also entered a farm on Government land and improved it. January, 1874, was appointed Under Sheriff of Cherokee County for two years, and re-appointed January, 1876, for two years more. In April, 1878, was admitted to the bar and practiced law two years. Was elected Sheriff of Cherokee County, November 6, 1879, taking the office the second Monday in January, 1880. Was re-elected November 8, 1881, and commenced his second term on the second Monday in January, 1882, and holds the office at this time. He was successful in business up to the commencement of the rebellion, and had accumulated a handsome competence, but the changes that the war brought caused him to lose nearly all his property, and when he came to Kansas in 1865, his purpose was to “go West, grow up with the country” and make a new start. He has been only moderately successful in business in Kansas. He has some lead interests in Galena, Kan., a stock farm, also a grain and fruit farm, and a residence on a ten-acre lot in the city of Columbus, the county seat, where he now resides. He is a member of the Congregational Church. He was married to Miss Philena J Chubb, in Washington County, Ill., November 9, 1864, and has three children living— Nina, Samuel Eddy and Rhoda; and four— Clarence, Ralph, Earnest and Eva, deceased.

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This family biography is one of 289 biographies included in The History of Cherokee County, Kansas included within the History of Kansas by William G. Cutler, published by A. T. Andreas, 1883.  For the complete description, click here: Cherokee County, Kansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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