Thursday, November 12, 2009

Scranton Kansas.

When ever I hear the words Scranton Kansas, it brings to mind happier days of my childhood days, of hunting and fishing on the family farm. It bring back the memories of home made ice-cream and family picnics in the family’s picnic grove, and all the other childhood memories. I know there are families that had a ancestor that come from Scranton, and had stories told to you about it, but beyond that you may know little or nothing about Scranton. Talk to your Grand-parents or Great-Grand-parents, and they will tell you about walking main street on a Saturday night while some of the parents traded in their eggs in for extra money, and afterwards how they may have went to the corner drug store for a coke or coffee or may decided to go to the bar for a dance and a beer or a game of pool. Now many of the smaller children would be drooped off in between two buildings to take in a free movie given by my uncle ( Carl Segelquist ), which he or some else would give on most Saturday nights. Then there were the young bucks of the town that would met at the corner gas station just as you came into town, to get the news.

They had little else to do in Scranton as it was so small, and being on the farm most of the week they were looking for something to do, some would make a trip to the big city ( Topeka ) 23miles away or they may go to Carbondale or Burlingame, but by doing so they may find themselves in a car chase. It was the same old story, the young bucks from one town didn’t take too kindly of the bucks from another rival town coming into their town, and when they did they would get together and chase them back to their own town, and when they got there the other bucks would be waiting and they would in turn chase them back to their town, it was a game that was played in most small towns in the county. Yes There are a lot of stories that can be told about Scranton why not ask your Grand-parents or Great-Grand-parents to tell you some “I know they would be glad, no!, thrilled to tell you a few, just ask and see“.

Now I can’t tell everything about the history of Scranton but I can give you some highlights and the rest will be up to you to research, and I will not give any family information here but I will list all the families that I have information on, and if you see a family that you would like to know more about, you can write me and I will be glad to tell you. My address can be found in my profile.


Scranton is situated on the line of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad, about five miles northeast of Burlingame, and on the level prairie land, not far from One Hundred and Ten Creek. The town is located in the center of the coal belt on the county, and mining is the principal industry. Though only about ten years old, Scranton is one of the most thriving towns in the county, and all branches of trade, necessary in a farming and mining country, are carried on. On September 27, 1871, Alex. Thomas, and O. H. Sheldon began sinking a coal shaft. This was completed in 1872, and mining was soon commenced. That year, Porter Sheldon joined in the enterprise, and the Burlingame and Scranton Coal Company was formed by the Sheldons, and a town surveyed late in the summer and called Scranton, from the town of that name in Pennsylvania. A few houses for the miners were built, and a store was opened. The entire business was superintended by Alex. Thomas. A post-office was established and A. Thomas appointed postmaster. For the first three years of its history there was little business done in the town, except by the above named Company. In 1875, the coal interests began to be developed to a greater extent, and as a consequence the town began to improve. Henry Isaacs opened his coal mines that year, and about the same time the Carbon Coal Company, and Chappell & Edwards began sinking shafts, and were followed the next year by Joseph Drake.

The first marriage was that of David Williams and Mrs. Rebecca Stull, which took place in 1873. The first sermon ever preached on the town site, was in April, 1872, by Rev. J. W. Stogdill of Burlingame, and at the Coal Company's boarding house. The schoolhouse was built in 1872, and the first term of school was taught the same year, by H. D. Porter of Burlingame. The schoolhouse was located on the northwest part of the original town site, and where the large two story schoolhouse now is.

The first birth in Scranton, was that of Madison Evans, son of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Evans, in August, 1872. He died December, 1873. This was the first death in the town.

After the town began to improve in 1875, it grew slowly until 1879, when the mines having been opened up, there was a rush of capital and settlers to the new town. So great was it that by June, 1880, the population numbered 930. Since that time the number of inhabitants has increased to nearly 1,700, and the town is steadily improving. Since the original town was surveyed, four additions have been made. Throop's Addition was first made on the west side of the original town site, and this is now the business portion of the town. Next was an addition by the Carbon Coal & Mining Company; then an addition, a short distance to the south, by the Osage Carbon Company, which is composed of about seventy-five miners' houses; and still later there has been Sheldon's Addition.

Scranton was incorporated as a city of the third class on August 4, 1880. The first Council was Joseph Tomlinson, William Scott, James Ingham, Joseph Drake and Thomas Kelley. The first Mayor was J. M. Giddings; Clerk and Police Judge, John R. Poe; Treasurer, H. A. Sheldon; Marshal, W. S. Challis. The present City Council is Thomas Chappell, James Campbell, James Peterson, John Love and Benjamin Hughes, The Mayor is Frank Lofty; Clerk, George Monnahan; Treasurer, H. A. Sheldon; Attorney, John R. Poe; Marshal, James Livingstone.
The greater number of the citizens of the town are church-goers, and several religious organizations are kept up, and are liberally supported. The different Church Societies are the Methodist Episcopal, Catholic, Presbyterian, Free Methodist, and Latter Day Saints. Each of the above organizations has a good membership and is in a prosperous condition. Only the first two named have church edifices, which were built in the years 1868 and 1869. The first church organized was the Methodist Episcopal, in 1872. The members were Alex. Thomas, John M. Cain, Sarah J. Cain and C. H. Wahlers. Rev. W. C. Howard was the first pastor. The church now has fifty-two members.

When the settlement of the town commenced, the first thing considered was the opening of a good public school, and the erection of suitable school buildings. This has continued, and as a result the town now has a large frame schoolhouse, built at a cost of $6,900. The school has five departments, and there are in the district 855 pupils.

The Kansas Plebeian is the only newspaper published at Scranton. It was established at Lyndon in the summer of 1882, and removed to Scranton in August of the same year. It is an eight column folio paper, edited and published by E. D. Hunt, in the interest of the Greenback party.

The mining of coal is the principal industry of Scranton, and it is upon this that the people depend generally for support.

The Osage Carbon Company.
The Scranton Co-operative Society
Henry Isaac's Coal Mines
Joseph Drake's Coal Mines
The Industrial Coal and Mining Company
Families of Scranton.
14. P. McBRIDE
23. H. A. THOMAS
24. A. G. WHITE

The following family names will not be in order.

1. Urish
2. Rown
3, Hulsopple
4. Eklund’s
5. Burks
6. Briggs
7. Ullery
8. Wakeman
9. Ridinger
10. Griffith
11. Sandbloom
12. Towle
13. Willows
14. Bodine
15. Mahoney
16. Burkhardt
17. Bristow
18. Dangerfield
19. Alberg
20. Borland
21. Carr
22. Phelon
23. Goebel
24. Coffman
25. Guntermann
26. McPhail
27. Cowen
28. Hutchison
29. Bodine
30. Segelquist
31. Strickenfinger

Note. If you could not find a family name here then maybe this link will be of help.
Scranton City Cemetery, Osage County, Kansas.


azdiana53 said...

Hi ! My Dangerfield ancestors (miners from Gloucestershire Engl) settled in Scranton in the 1880's: Edwin Dangerfield, wife Hannah Lavinia & eventually 12 children. Do you have anything on the Dangerfield's in Scranton?
I know they were in Kansas by 1886 (birth of son Jobe)and by census records in Scranton 1895 & 1900. He & sons were miners; some moved to So. Illinois mining around the turn of the century. Edwin died in Mar 1902 - an accident the result of a rather unusual ship collision in Liverpool as he & family were returning after extended visit. Unable to find an obituary for him or for the death date & place of his wife (after 1906)... any help appreciated! Thanks! Diana

Dennis Segelquist said...

I don’t have a lot but some, the following comes from a booklet from the Scranton Centennial.

Mr. and Nrs. Joseph Dangerfield were early settles in Scranton. Nr. Dagerfield worked in the coal mines and farmed. Emily, his wife, was well known for making wedding gowns in Scranton and also in Topeka after they left Scranton. They had six children born in Scranton. Edwin, Anna, Laura, Loise, Alice, Esther and Ruth.

Mr. and Mrs. Major Dangerfield also were early residents of Scranton before moving to Topeka. A unique aspect of Major and Nell Dangerfield they never registered to vote in Topeka but returned to Scranton many times to cast their ballots.

Scranton Cemetery.

Harriet Ellen Dangerfield.
Birth: Nov. 2, 1888.
Death: Sept. 11, 1968.

Henry Dangerfield.
Birth: unknown
Death: May 29, 1899.
Aged: 15 Years, 3 Months.

Henry D. Dangerfield.
Birth: 1906.
Death: 1950.

Jobe Dangerfield.
Birth: unknown.
Death: Feb. 28, 1904.

Major L. Dangerfield.
Birth: 1882.
Death: 1940.

azdiana53 said...

Thanks! Fascinating tidbits of info! I've had some success with the Kansas State census too. My G-Grandfather Dangerfield married the daughter of another local miner, James Galligan - and I finally located he & family in the 1885 KS census, in Scranton! Appreciate your help & enjoyed reading about Scranton.
Thanks again ~Diana

Anonymous said...

Hi - many thanks for your info on Scranton. Do you have anything on Henry Isaacs (my great grandfather & his wife, Elizabeth Peel Isaacs)?
Would like to know more about his mines also.


Dennis Segelquist said...

All the info I have on the Isaacs is on the page entitled. "The Isaacs Family of Scranton Kansas." Dated 1-8-10.