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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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Although leading a quiet life and rarely assuming a conspicuous place in the civic life of Topeka, the late James F. Blakemore was a useful and representative citizen. He was born March 17, 1830, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was a son of Thomas Blakemore.

The parents of Mr. Blakemore were natives of England. The father was a manufacturer of pearl buttons, which industry he carried on first in Philadelphia, and later in Cincinnati, Ohio, whither the family removed when James F., the youngest of the family of 10 children, was a child.

Our subject was thus reared and educated at Cincinnati, graduating at St. Avery’s Academy. He remained in that city until 1872 and then came West and located at Topeka, engaging with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway Company, with which he continued to be connected until the close of his life. From one position to another he was promoted until at one time he was foreman of the machine shops at Dodge City. He died September 19, 1904. He was a good citizen, a reliable workman and a devoted husband and father. For 47 years he was a Mason.

On March 18, 1873, Mr. Blakemore was married to Mrs. Nancy (Coon) LaRue, widow of J. LaRue, whose death occurred in 1864. Mrs. Blakemore still survives, with one son, Thomas H., who is a resident of St. Louis. She lives in a very pleasant and comfortable home at No. 813 Jefferson street, Topeka.

Mr. Blakemore is very kindly remembered by his associates and by the company which he served with such unswerving fidelity and mechanical skill for so many years. He is remembered also as one of the pioneer railroad men of the city, as he came here in the infancy of railroad transportation in Kansas.

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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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