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Below is a family biography included in History of Shawnee County, Kansas and Representative Citizens by James L. King, published by Richmond & Arnold, 1905.  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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Ansel E. Dickinson, one of the leading citizens of Soldier township, Shawnee County, who resides in section 3, township 10, range 16, on his fine farm of 340 acres, was born May 21, 1845, in Portage County, Ohio, and is a son of Stoddard and Lucy (Hine) Dickinson.

The father of Mr. Dickinson was born in 1799 in Massachusetts, located in Ohio after his marriage and died there in 1873, aged 74 years. The mother was born in 1807 in Connecticut and died in 1895, aged 88 years. They reared eight children, of whom four are now living, namely: Truman B., who conducts an insurance business at Ravena, Ohio; George W., a farmer at Shalersville, Ohio; Adelaide, who is the wife of Luman Colton, a retired farmer of Ionia, Michigan; and Ansel E., of this sketch.

Our subject was educated in the common schools of his native locality, at Hiram Academy and spent two years at Hiram College. Then after teaching school in Ohio for two years he came to Kansas in 1868, when 23 years old. Here he bought land and continued to teach school. Mr. Dickinson taught 16 years in Kansas, 12 years of these being spent in three different schools, four years each, which is considered quite a record for country schools of that time. In 1880 he added a second quarter-section to the one he had previously purchased and since then has devoted his attention to cultivating it and to stock-raising. His land was all wild and uncleared when he purchased it but he has developed it into a very fine farm, devoting 200 acres to farming and the remainder to pasture and fruit. His annual yield of apples averages 1,200 barrels. Mr. Dickinson has a very attractive home, its location being on a gentle eminence, reached from the highway by an avenue shaded by beautiful trees. He utilizes modern machinery and has his own system of water-works, operated by air pressure, and thus is able to enjoy the luxuries of a city home.

Mr. Dickinson was married March 3, 1873, to Eleanor C. Arnold, who was a daughter of Shailor S. and Elizabeth (Cooley) Arnold, of Jefferson County. Mrs. Dickinson died March 23, 1900, aged 51 years. They had three children, viz: Eda A., who married Clayton Casler, a clerk in the employ of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway Company, and has two children,—Beulah and Louisa; Walter, who married Grace Shaffer, daughter of John I. Shaffer and resides with his father; and Josephine A., who also lives at home.

Mr. Dickinson is a Republican. He has served many years in school offices and has been a member of the examining board. His interest has always been lively in agricultural affairs and he is a member of Muddy Creek Grange, of which he is lecturer and ex-master. He was for two years assistant in the right-of-way department of the Santa Fe road.

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This family biography is one of 206 biographies included in History of Shawnee County, Kansas and Representative Citizens by James L. King, published by Richmond & Arnold, 1905.  For the complete description, click here: Shawnee County, Kansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Shawnee County, Kansas family biographies here: Shawnee County, Kansas

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