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Hon. James Mann Hagaman


The name of J. M. Hagaman occurs frequently upon these pages and he is known-to every household of Cloud county, yet many may not know of his career prior to taking up his abode on the frontier of Kansas on July 8, 1860, when he, with his family and a small company of friends, settled on Elm creek. From that date down to the present he has been an active promoter of the best interests of Cloud county, and more especially of his own town, Concordia.

Mr. Hagaman is a native of Wayne county, New York, born on the bleak shores of Lake Ontario in July, 1830. He is a son of Joseph Nicholas and Elizabeth (O'Neil) Hagaman. His father was a farmer and carpenter by occupation and a soldier in the war of 1812. He was murdered in 1868 in Cloud county, where he had emigrated in 1866. The Hagaman ancestors were from Holland and pioneer settlers of Montgomery county, New York. Mr. Hagaman's father was a daring and courageous soldier; was lieutenant of his company and taken prisoner with General Scott at the battle of Queenston, Canada. It was a great-uncle of Mr. Hagaman who built the Hagaman mills, manufacturers of cloth, in Montgomery county, New York. His Maternal ancestors were from Holland and Ireland. His Irish ancestors, for taking sides with the colonies in the Revolutionary war, were exiled from Ireland by the British Crown.

Mr. Hagaman is the only surviving member of a family of seven children. He received a limited education at Hagaman's Mills and at the age of sixteen years had acquired what was taught at that time in the public schools. Though he did not take a collegiate course, many miles of travel would not produce a man of so wide a practical knowledge and experience of things generally. He considers that, while his life has not been a brilliant success, it by no means has been a failure; full success in some, and in all others partial success has resulted from his, many undertakings and adventures. He has been self-supporting since nine years old.

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Mr. Hagaman was married in 1855 to Mary Louisa Webster, who was born in the state of New York. Her parents were natives of Massachusetts and emigrated from New York to Wisconsin in 1850. Mr. and Mrs. Hagaman emigrated to Kansas with their one child in 1860. They came overland with two yoke of cattle. His financial possessions were one hundred and twenty-five dollars in gold, eight head of cattle and farm implements; four years later he gave his personal tax in as eighteen hundred dollars. He invested his surplus funds in calves and dealt in stock quite extensively.

Mr. and Mrs. Hagaman are the parents of seven children, six of whom are living: Alice C., wife of N. P. Buesenbark, now a resident of Kansas City, but formerly a merchant of Concordia. Mary Almina, who has been an invalid the greater part of her life.

Adelina H., deceased wife of L. M. Richardson, an employee of the Chicago Lumber Company and a merchant of Richburg, Mississippi. James F., now of Kansas City, formerly associated with his father in newspaper work. Nicholas Alvin, a locomotive engineer in the employ of the B. & M. Railroad. Phenie, wife of James Lupton, express agent on the B. & M. Railroad, with residence at Lincoln, Nebraska. Fannie O., the first child born in Concordia.

Mr. Hagaman has represented his county in the legislature, founded the thriving and populous city of Concordia and has been its mayor two terms. For thirty-two years he has been an attorney at law and he's the first to be admitted to practice in the district court of his county. Besides those mentioned he has held many other civil offices, and also a military commission, and now, although past seventy-two years of age, his step is quick and his appearance is more like that of a man in the prime of life than one of his advanced years.

Source: Biographical history of Cloud County, Kansas: biographies of representative citizens; published 1903, 915 pgs.


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