My Genealogy Hound

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.

* * * *

William J. Allen, one of the prosperous farmers and highly respected citizens of Williamsport township, Shawnee County, was born February 21, 1858, in this county, and is a son of Samuel and Susanna (Baxter) Allen.

Both parents of Mr. Allen were born in County Down, Ireland. The father came to America in 1852 and the mother in 1853. Both lived at Oberlin, Ohio, several years and then came to Shawnee County, Kansas, where they were married on January 20, 1857. The father had followed the stone-mason’s trade in Ohio, but when he came to this county in 1855 he preempted 80 acres of land in section 8, township 13, range 15, in Auburn township, which he had much improved at the time of his death. He had always been a Free-State man and had taken part in a number of the early demonstrations against the Pro-Slavery men that make up so large a part of the early history of Kansas. He was loyal to the government and State and when the State militia were called out to repel Price’s invasion, he was one of the brave soldiers of Col. George W. Veale’s regiment who perished at the battle of the Blue. Of the children in the parental family, our subject was the oldest of three. Robert Samuel, born May 12, 1860, died October 14, 1860; Anna Elizabeth, who was 14 months old when her father was killed, is the wife of W. A. C. Moore, of Auburn township. In 1865 our subject’s mother married James Whitten, a fellow countryman, who died October 30, 1903, at the age of 77 years, leaving his widow and three sons.

Our subject has devoted his whole life to farming. His present farm of 160 acres in section 9, township 13, range 15, in Williamsport township, was but unbroken prairie land when he took possession. Hard work and good management have converted it into a valuable farm where Mr. Allen has carried on general farming and stock-raising for a number of years. He has witnessed many changes since he has come to years of discretion, and conditions no longer exist in his native State which confronted his father and caused his early death.

On January 1, 1880, Mr. Allen was married to Mary Mitchell, who was born at Cincinnati, Ohio, December 18, 1861 and came to Kansas with her parents, Robert and Mary Jane (Boyd) Mitchell, in 1870. They have had five children, namely: Rosa Irene Lillian; Jennie Ellen Estella; Nellie R., deceased at the age of seven years; William, deceased in infancy; and John, who also died in infancy.

Like his father, Mr. Allen has always been a strong Republican. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church, as was his father, and stands very high in the estimation of the community.

* * * *

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

Use the links at the top right of this page to search or browse thousands of other family biographies.