John Hoon (1869-1924), Clothier

John Hoon was born in Berlin, Pennsylvania on January 4, 1869, the fourth child of Valentine Hoon and Elizabeth Suder.  John grew up on the family farm in Brothers Valley Township, Somerset County, Pennsylvania.  The Hoon family arrived in Abilene, Kansas on March 25, 1885 and John would live in Abilene the remainder of his life.

John Hoon

John Hoon (1869-1924)

The Hoon family were active members of the Grace Reformed Church.  John Hoon officially became a member of the Grace Reformed Church in Berlin, Pennsylvania in 1884.  The Grace Reformed Church in Abilene was formed on November 4, 1883, when its Constitution was adopted and elders and deacons elected.  Shortly after the Hoon’s arrived in Abilene, John’s membership was moved from Berlin to Abilene.  In April 1886, the church voted to build a new church at the northwest corner of Buckeye Avenue and 5th Street (current location of Copeland Insurance), and Valentine Hoon along with other members were commissioned to manage the construction.  John first served as the Sunday School Superintendent Secretary in 1889 and would later be a deacon.

John married Addie Raney on April 9, 1893 at her parent’s home in Abilene.  Addie, the fourth daughter of Harden P. and Harriet L. (Johnson) Raney, was a native of Tennessee.  John and Addie lived at 304 E. 1st Street and did not have children.

Professionally, John was employed by William Ward Davis at the Davis Shoe Store, which was also known as the Blue Front Shoe Store, which for a time was located in the Brady Block (now the United Trust Building) at the northwest corner of 3rd and Cedar Streets (currently Cedar Street Market).  For 16 years, John worked as a shoe salesman primarily for Mr. Davis, but also for C. A. Wyandt (1891) and for Arthur B. Rose (1898-1900).  John’s brother William, worked 15 years for the clothier, Franklin Bearce, who’s store was at 211 N. Broadway.  When Bearce’s closed in 1902, William Hoon was the agent for the merchandise clearance.

AWC 4-2-1903

W. H. Hoon & Company Opening Advertisement, Abilene Weekly Chronicle, April 2, 1903

With the closing of the Bearce Clothing Store, the Hoon brothers saw an opportunity.  They had collective experience of over 30 years in the retail clothing business along with great reputations.  In April 1903, they formed W. H. Hoon & Company, which carried a wide range of men and boys clothing and accessories.  The company opened at 209 N. Broadway Street (currently part of the Abilene School District offices).  Two month after opening, the 1903 flood ravished downtown.  The Hoon brothers had only 1 foot of water in their basement and sustained minimal loss.  However, they did have $100 of merchandise on a boxcar in Kansas City that was damaged by the flood.  This was a minor loss compared to many of the other businesses.

Also in 1903, Everett E. Swanzey left his salesman position at the A. B. Rose Company to work for W. H. Hoon & Company.  The following year William Hoon sold his portion of the business to Mr. Swanzey and took a traveling salesman job for a clothing manufacturer and relocated to West Virginia.  With his new career, William would live in several cities including Sioux City, Iowa; Lincoln, Nebraska, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Wheeling, West Virginia.  John tool the reigns and the W. H. Hoon & Company was renamed to Hoon & Company.  In April 1908, Hoon & Company moved one door south to 207 N. Broadway Street, which had been occupied by the J. K. Markley & Company grocery store.  The 1,750 sq. ft. space displayed a largest and most exclusive line of high grade clothing, hats, shirts, and neckwear.  Apart from the owners, the clothier hired two sales clerks.  Among those who worked as sales clerks was Harry Lewis Sorber.

AWR - 11-16-1905 #2

Interior of Hoon & Company at 209 N. Broadway Street in 1905

AWR 9-26-1907

Hoon & Company Advertisement, Abilene Weekly Reflector, September 26, 1907

In 1912, Hoon & Company installed a new awning and a thief tried to break in through the door on the alley, but was unable to pry the door open.  This thief was successful at Case’s dry goods store that night.  In 1913, John traveled to Kansas City to pick up his new car, a Velie 32.  Two years later he sold the car to William A. Matteson and purchased a larger Velie from Charles Ellwood Dyer.

John took great interest in civic affairs.  In 1898, John was elected to the City Council representing Ward 1 by a 29 vote majority over George Washington Shook.  During his first term, John served on the committee that ascertained the condition of the Central Hotel, which was later condemned and razed.  At the end of his first term in 1900, John ran for re-election and tied Theodore Hasshagen with 71 votes each.  At the City Council meeting following the election, the names of Hoon and Hasshagen were placed in a hat and Hoon’s slip was drawn.  At the same meeting Richard A. Brown resigned his seat on the City Council since he moved outside the city limits.  Mr. Hasshagen was nominated to fill the position vacated by Mr. Brown and was unopposed.

During his second term, John was elected as the City Council President in 1901.  At that time the Mayor was elected at large rather than appointed from among the councilmen.  In 1904, John was elected to the Abilene School Board and served one full term until 1908.  After his public service, he was a Ward 1 election judge for a number of election cycles.

John was an active member of the Abilene Commercial Club (forerunner of the Abilene Area Chamber of Commerce).  Following the condemning and demolition of the Central Hotel (southwest corner of Spruce and 3rd Streets), the Commercial Club formed a committee to solicit financing for a new hotel.  John Hoon was one of the team members offering subscriptions to build a new hotel.  This effort was successful and resulted in the construction of the Forster Hotel at the northwest corner of 2nd and Spruce Streets (currently occupied by NextHome Unlimited, Farmers Insurance, Verizon, and The Teck Shop).

John and Addie lived at 304 E. 1st Street for twenty years and were caretakers for Addie’s aging father who stayed with them until his death in 1920.  John’s aging mother lived across the street at 309 E. 1st Street.  John died on August 6, 1924 in Abilene.  Three days later his funeral was held at the Grace Reformed Church and was laid to rest in the Abilene Cemetery.  Addie died in 1935 and is buried with her husband.

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314 N. Buckeye, Abilene – Jeffcoat Boarding Stable

Lots 26 & 28, Augustine & Lebold’s 2nd Addition

The property occupied by the building addressed 314 N. Buckeye Avenue was part of the Miller & Thomas Lumber Yard between 1883 and June 1887, when the firm moved to the northeast corner of Cedar and A (Texas) Streets.  Miller & Thomas had a narrow lumber shed running along the west property line.  The lumber sheds were removed and the property did not have any structures until 1907.  During this time the property was likely used by the Jeffcoat Livery Stable and/or Star Livery Stable.

AWC 5-8-1907

Abilene Weekly Reflector – May 8, 1907

In March 1907, Amasa Jeffcoat petitioned the City Council for permission to build a horse boarding barn at 314 N. Buckeye Avenue.  Permission was granted.  However, neighboring livery stable owner, H. A. Anderson, brought an injunction suit to the Council to halt the building project contending that the block walls were one inch less in thickness than required by ordinance.  The ordinance in questions did not cover cement block buildings.  On May 17th, the City Council adopted an ordinance addressing cement structures and allowed construction of the building to continue.  This building is one of the few solid cement block buildings in Abilene.  The new stable was touted as the most modern in the city with electric lighting throughout, insulated wire, and box stalls for twenty horses.

Footprint 1912

314 N. Buckeye Avenue Footprint in 1912

The boarding stable was sold to veterinarian Dr. Ralph E. Townsend in October 1910.  Dr. Townsend continued the business at the same stand and added his veterinary office at the space.  The boarding stable turned into an animal hospital with recovering animals being under consistent observation of the veterinarian.  Dr. Townsend elected to build a new animal hospital in the spring of 1920 and began construction of the structures at 405 N. Buckeye Avenue.


1951 Flooding of the Grapette Bottling Company

From 1923 to 1947 the building was used as a produce and poultry station and in 1948 the Grapette Bottling Company operated a bottling facility in the building.  However, three years later the 1951 flood ceased the bottling operation and the building became unoccupied for three years.  In 1954, Garrett’s Tire Service opened and would do business at this location until 1976.

The original structure did not extend west to the alley, thereby allowing for an outdoor yard for animals.  The original structure has a loft hay shoot door on the west end for 2nd floor loading.  This feature is now inside of the structure since the additional of a metal shed on the alley.  In recent years, several improvements have been made to the property, including a wide finished staircase and finished studio space on the second floor.  The 2nd floor bay window was recently installed in an opening that was originally a lot hay door.

The building has housed the following businesses:

  • Jeffcoat & Son Livery Stable (1907-1910),
  • Ralph E. Townsend (1910-1920),
  • Abilene Hardwood Lumber Company (1923),
  • Harrison A. Meier Produce Station (1923-1940),
  • Seymour Produce Station (1941-1947),
  • Grapette Bottling Company (1948-1951),
  • Garrett’s Tire Service (1954-1976),
  • Bauman Carpet (1976-2001), and
  • SK Designs (2001-Present)
Baumans 2-28-2004

Ralph and Mary Bauman at 314 N. Buckeye Avenue in 2001

SK Designs 12-15-18

314 N. Buckeye Avenue in 2018







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Dr. Charles Frederick Attwood (1882-1945), Physician and Surgeon

ADR 9-4-1914

Dr. Charles Frederick Attwood

Thomas Edward Attwood told a tale of his being a young man who set out from Leavenworth County, Kansas by foot with a bag of peach pits and little money heading west.  He would trade pits for food and with what pits he had left he would start an orchard.  He came to settle in Goshen Township, Clay County, Kansas.  Being too young to apply for a homestead, he squatted for a couple of years until he could claim the land and set to farming.  This was in the year 1870.  He married Mary M. Adkins and over the next twenty years they would raise eight children in Goshen Township near Fact, Kansas.  Of their eight children four would become physicians (J. Edward, Lewis, George Arthur, and Charles Frederick) and one would become a pharmacist (Ethel Mary).  Their sixth child was Charles Frederick Attwood born in Clay Center, Kansas on January 11, 1882.  As all the male children did, Charles attended local schools and worked on the farm.

The Times (Clay Center) 6-20-1905

Advertisement from The Times (Clay Center),  June 20, 1905

After finishing local school courses, Charles enrolled at the Kansas Medical School in Topeka in 1902 and graduated in 1906.  His older brother, Lewis, was a physician in Topeka at the time.  Charles would return to Clay County for holidays and during the summer.  Although he had not completed his training as a physician and surgeon, he started practicing medicine in Fact, Kansas in June 1905 and would do so for a year.  While at school, Charles met Azaima Florence Deever, a daughter of Rev. John Bixler Deever and Jennie Brown Etherington.  Charles and Florence were married at her parent’s house in Topeka on April 12, 1906.  The couple’s only child, Dorothy Jane Attwood, would be born in Palmer, Kansas on February 16, 1910.

Azaima Florence Deever Attwood 1

Azaima Florence Deever Attwood

After graduating with his medical degree, Charles visited his brother in-law and sister, George Franklin and Luella Lucille (Attwood) Hahn, in Palmer, Kansas and decided to move his practice there.  His practice in Palmer officially began on May 1, 1906 with his office being on the 2nd floor above the P. Meier & Son Store.   When other physicians were on vacation, Charles would step in to manage the practice until their return.  This favor was often reciprocated.  For instance, in January 1907, Charles and Florence had an extended visit with her parents in Topeka and Charles’ brother Dr. George Arthur Attwood, arrived in Palmer to manage while Charles was absent.  While practicing in Palmer, Charles had an automobile and often drove patients to Clay Center for treatment and surgery.

The Linn-Palmer Record 7-1-1910

Advertisement from The Linn-Palmer Record, July 1, 1910

Charles decided to open a pharmacy in Palmer and traveled to Topeka to purchase the equipment and fixtures for the new venture.  The Attwood Pharmacy opened in May 1909.  The pharmacy had a soda fountain, back to school supplies, Christmas gifts, sold tickets to local events, and other goods available nowhere else in Palmer.  Miss Blanche Thomas was one of the pharmacy employees.  Charles decided that running a medical practice and pharmacy was not working, so he sold the pharmacy in February 1912 to a party from Medford, Oklahoma.  As part of the sale, Charles acquired 160 acres in Grant County, Oklahoma near Medford.

Florence was a member of the Knight’s and Ladies of Security Council, which threw a surprise farewell dinner for the Attwood’s at Cook & Fowler’s store prior to their moving to Abilene.  The last week of May, Charles loaded up his car with personal effects and drove to Abilene.  Charles resigned his position on the Palmer City Council and Bert Harnett was appointed as his replacement.  Upon arriving in Abilene, the Attwood’s purchased part of Lots 1 and 3, Block 15 of the Kuney and Hodges Addition and commenced to having a bungalow built.  The home addressed 802 N. Olive Street was completed in July 1912.  The Attwood’s would live in this home the duration of their time in Abilene and sold it to George Stacey Chase in 1925.

301 N Broadway

Farmers National Bank at 301 N. Broadway Street, Abilene.  Dr. C. F. Attwood’s Office Upstairs and Painted on Window


DCN 11-6-1913

Advertisement in the Dickinson County News, November 6, 1913

When he first arrived in Abilene, Charles’ practice occupied an office on the 2nd floor of the Farmers National Bank building (currently the La Fiesta Mexican Restaurant) and was addressed 212 ½ NW. 3rd Street with the entrance being on the 3rd Street side of the building.  His office would be in this location until December 1918, when he would move to the space above the Hoon & Company Clothing store at 207 N. Broadway (currently the south third of the USD 435 Administrative Offices).  In 1920, he moved his office to 208 ½ N. Broadway Street, which was above the Oscar Allen Dentzer’s Grocery Store (currently Abilene Chiropractic).

In Abilene, Charles was a member of the Brotherhood of American Yeoman and served as Chaplain.  He was on the Board of Directors of the Commercial State Bank, which was managed by his brother in-law, Roy M. Deevers.  Charles was also a shareholder for the natatorium.  Florence was involved with the Methodist church.

AWC 5-7-1919

Abilene Weekly Chronicle, May 7, 1919

In January 1918, Charles was appointed the Dickinson County Health Officer and would serve in that capacity until 1921.  He was succeeded by Dr. Tracy R. Conklin in 1922.  In October 1918, Charles was informed that he passed the examination to serve in the army medical corps and he would be commissioned for duty in the near future.  However, World War I ended on November 11, 1918 when Germany signed the Armistice of Compiègne.  During this time, the Memorial Hospital was being built and Charles was one of the managing physicians.  The other managing physicians were: Drs. Peter Bachman Witmer, Tracy R. Conklin, Simon S. Steelsmith, Harry Bowman Felty, and Johann Nickaulaus Dieter.  In July 1919, the Attwood’s spent a month in Rochester, Minnesota, while Charles attended a four week post graduate course at the Mayo Brothers hospital, later known as the Mayo Clinic.  The following year, the US Bureau of War Risk Insurance appointed Charles as an examiner for insurance claims for servicemen.

In 1924, the Attwood’s decided to move back to Topeka.  Charles rented part of 909-911 Kansas Avenue in downtown for his office and the family lived at 1301 SW. MacVicar Street.  Around 1940, they moved to 1411 Stratford Street.  Between 1933 and 1937, his office was in Suite 202 of the Kresge Building and at 633 Kansas Avenue between 1938 and 1945.

Charles died on Christmas Day of 1945 in Topeka.  Florence would outlive her husband by almost 20 years.  She died in Topeka on February 8, 1965.  They were laid to rest in the Penwell-Gabel Cemetery and Mausoleum in Topeka.

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Charles Hubert Pinkham (1843-1915), Dry Goods and Clothing Merchant


Charles Hubert Pinkham

George Washington Pinkham and Elvira Melissa Flannagan welcomed their first child into the world on March 17, 1843 and named him Charles Hubert Pinkham.  He was born in Port Huron, Michigan, where the St. Clair River flows to the great Lake Huron.  George was a shoemaker and owner of George W. Pinkham & Company in downtown Port Huron.  Charles and his siblings who grew beyond infancy were raised in a mercantile environment.  Thus, Charles developed skills to operate a business at an early age.

In 1866, at the age of 23, Charles moved to Peoria, Illinois and there he met Luella White.  Luella and Charles were married in Peoria on May 31, 1867.  Their son, Charles Almon Pinkham, was born in Peoria in 1868.  The young family migrated to Rock Bluff Township in Cass County, Nebraska in 1870.  When the town of South Bend was starting to develop as a result of The Burlington & Missouri River Railroad constructed a line from Plattsmouth to Lincoln, Charles seized the opportunity.  In 1872, he opened a general store.  That same year, he was appointed as Postmaster of South Bend and operated the post office out of a corner of the general store.  Tragedy struck the young family when Luella died unexpectedly on August 25, 1872 in South Bend.

C H Pinkham General Store South Bend Nebraska 1880

C. H. Pinkham’s General Store and Post Office in South Bend, Nebraska

In 1873, Charles purchased the grain elevator in South Bend.  Then he married Helen Claira Cooley on February 14, 1874 in Plattsmouth, Nebraska.  While in South Bend, Charles and Helen would have their three sons: John, James Patterson, and Frank.  There was some excitement in the store when in November 1880, the store safe was blown up and a considerable amount of money stolen.  Charles continued to operate the general story and remained post master.  In 1879, a wagon bridge was built across the Platte River connecting South Bend with Sarpy County, which made the general store more convenient for those on the north side of the river.  However, an ice jam and fire damaged the bridge in 1881 and it was abandoned.  That same year, Charles sold the grain elevator, general store, and completed his term as Postmaster.  This may have occurred because of the bridge and the Great Flood of 1881, which swelled the Platte River and flooded several towns.  By 1885, the family lived across the Platte River in Springfield, Nebraska where Charles was working as a grain dealer.  They moved to Lincoln, Nebraska around 1887.  Their daughter, Hubertine C., was born in Nebraska in 1888.

DCN 11-7-1889 ad footer

The Rescue Advertisement – Dickinson County News, November 7, 1889


The Rescue

The Rescue operated by the Pinkham Brothers

The Pinkham’s left Nebraska arriving in Abilene, Kansas in 1888.  Charles and his brother George owned a dry goods store named The Rescue, which was located at 318 N. Broadway (currently occupied by Hairtiques).  In July 1890, The Rescue moved to a refitted storefront at 312 N. Broadway Street (current the north half of The Other Jones).  Charles bought out George’s share of the business around 1894.  George moved from Solomon, Kansas to Guthrie, Oklahoma shortly thereafter.  Around 1896, the business was renamed C. H. Pinkham’s and moved to the northeast corner of the post office block (now addressed 311 NW. 3rd and occupied by John Purvis, Attorney).  The post office block was a 3-story brick building at the southeast corner of 3rd and Cedar Streets.  Charles’ son, John was going to business school and planned on work in his dad’s business.  John, James, and Frank all worked in the business at different times.

In the mid-1890’s, Charles became involved with a number of fraternal and civic organizations.  He was a member of the Crescent Council No. 10 of the F.A.A., the Knight of Pythias, the Commercial Club (now the Abilene Area Chamber of Commerce), and the Abilene Chess Club.  Helen was active in the community and was a member of The Ladies’ Aid Society.  In October 1898, the Pinkham’s purchased the house at 502 NW. 6th Street.  John Pinkham worked in the post office in Cleveland, Ohio when he grew weak from consumption and could no longer work.  He returned to Abilene and died at the family home on November 8, 1900.

Pinkham's Dry Goods Store

Interior of C. H. Pinkham’s

ADR 1-3-1902

Pinkham’s Close Out Sale Ad – Abilene Daily Reflector, January 3, 1902

In June 1901, Charles purchased the stock of the Benefit Store and consolidated it with Pinkham’s.  The store remained at the 311 NW. 3rd Street location until the beginning of 1902, when the post office did not extend Charles’ lease and a closing out sale was held.  By March, Charles secured the space at 209 N. Cedar Street just south of the post office’s Cedar Street entrance (now occupied by Xpressions Salon).  This would be the last move the store would make for the next 86 years.  In Aug 1904, Charles improved the showroom by adding a double decker platform to display a larger stock and the room received new wallpaper.  On September 1, 1909, Charles took possession of the post office block from S. A. Cooper for $10,000.  He promptly remodeled the building with a new steel ceiling, a new staircase to Central Kansas Business College, and a boiler for heat.  This allowed them to double the size of their suit department.  One of the notable items of the business was the large cabinet cash register, which was purchased in April of 1912.

Charles’ son, Frank, had taken an interest in the retail business and after high school moved to St. Louis, Missouri to work for a wholesale dry goods house in 1899.  A couple years later he worked for a similar company in St. Joseph, Missouri.  By 1904, he returned to Abilene and took a position with his father’s business as a manager and buyer.  Frank was living with his parents at 502 NW. 6th Street.  He married Lucile “Lucy” Gertrude Hart at the St. Andrew’s Catholic Church in Abilene on September 26, 1911.  Lucy was the first woman to work at Pinkham’s in 1904.  The new couple purchased the home at 514 N. Cedar Street and would have four children: Dorothy Mary and Doris A. (twins, b. 1912), Helen (b. 1913, who died in infancy), and Charles P. (b. 1917).

ADC 11-24-1911

C. H. Pinkham & Son Advertisement – Abilene Daily Chronicle, November 24, 1911

In 1913, parcel post was introduced at the Abilene Post Office and Pickham’s sent one of the first packages.  It weighed the limit of 11 lbs, cost 25 cents in postage and insurance, and was delivered to J. W. Rumold, who lived 9 miles from Abilene.  At the same time the new post office at 3rd and Buckeye was being built and since it was not complete the post office renewed their lease from Pinkham.

The post office moved to the new facility at 3rd and Buckeye Avenue in 1914 leaving the space to the north of Pinkham’s vacant.  It was announced later that year that Pinkham’s would expand into the space.  This would allow them to put their cloak room on the main floor and expand their offerings.

Charles enjoyed cars and often went on long road trips.  This was prior to paved roads and Charles had gotten stuck more than once.  In 1907, Charles and Frank left Great Bend in his Ford Runabout and arrived in Solomon 2 hours after leaving.  Then a storm hit and it took two hours to arrive in Abilene having gotten stuck in mud a number of times.  Later that year, Charles traveled with Hubertine to Denver and followed that up with a two month visit to the old hometown of Port Huron, Michigan.  Charles purchased a new car in 1913 and drove it to Abilene after picking it up in Kansas City.

C.H. Pinkham & Hubertine in 1906 Ford Model N

Charles and Hubertine C. Pinkham (Holzworth)

The year 1913 also saw Charles’ health turn for the worse.  In March 1914, he spent time in the Swedish Hospital in Topeka, Kansas and it was determined that he had stomach cancer.  He returned home, but remained weak and Frank was handling all of the day to day business of the store.  Charles died at 2:30 pm on Tuesday, February 9, 1915 at the family’s home at 502 NW. 6th Street.  The family knew the end was near and all of his children were bedside when he passed.  James traveled in from Hartman, Colorado; Charles from Holly, Colorado; and Hubertine from El Paso, Texas.  His funeral was held at the home two days later and a large contingent accompanied the body to the Abilene Cemetery for burial.

Store Front

Pinkham’s at 209-211 N. Cedar Street

After Charles’ death, Frank continued in the business until his death in 1954.  At the time his wife, Lucy, and daughter Dorothy had management roles in the business and continued.  After her father’s death, Doris returning from Redwood City, California to work at Pinkham’s.  Lucy died in 1974 and the twin sisters operated the business until 1988, when it was closed after 100 years of continuous service to the community.  The remaining assets of the business were auctioned in 1990, including the cabinet cash register which was topped with an ornate brass plate engraved with “C. H. Pinkham & Son”.

Pinkham 100 year 1






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Charles Edgar “Ed” Shadinger (1868-1941), The Newsman and Printer

Charles Edgar Shadinger was born on July 14, 1868 in Mendota, Illinois to Henry Swartz and Nellie Armenia (Parks) Shadinger.  Henry “Harry” Shadinger was a farmer and civil war veteran with strong skills as a liveryman.  In 1871, the Shadinger family migrated to Dickinson County and Harry received a land patent for 168 acres in Section 4 in Buckeye Township, 7 miles north of Abilene.  The family moved into town around 1876 and his father built the Shadinger Livery Stable in the 400 block of NW. 2nd Street, which later became known as the Opera House Livery Stable.

Charles Edgar Shadinger 1

Charles Edgar Shadinger

Charles was commonly known as “Ed”.  Ed and his younger brother, Roy, attended Abilene schools and in May 1886 Ed graduated from the Abilene Commercial School.  That August, he became a printing apprentice for the Abilene Chronicle newspaper, which was published by Albert Wilkerson Hargreaves.  This was his first experience in the printing business which would become is primary vocation.  In January 1887, the Shadinger’s moved to Chapman, Kansas where Ed became the printer for the Chapman Courier.  An opportunity at the Denver Press in Denver, Colorado lured Ed west in early 1890.  However, this move west was temporary as he returned to Abilene in August to manage the Enterprise Publishing Company in Enterprise, Kansas.  A few months later, Ed would start working for the Abilene Chronicle again.  In February 1891, Ed accepted a position with the Santa Paula Chronicle in Santa Paula, California.

Jessie Ann Jeffcoat Shadinger 2

Jessie Ann Jeffcoat Shadinger

Ed had grown up knowing Miss Jessie Ann Jeffcoat since they attended school together in Abilene.  Jessie’s father, Amasa Jeffcoat, was in the livery business as was Ed’s father, so the families knew each other well.  In December 1891, Jessie boarded a train in Abilene and traveled to Santa Paula where she joined Ed.  The couple were married on December 12, 1891 in Santa Paula, California and returned to Enterprise in April the following year.  Ed worked for the Enterprise Journal, Abilene Herald, and Chapman Standard.  In the fall of 1893, Ed expressed interest in purchasing the Chapman Standard from J. C. Russel, but a deal was not made.  That November, Ed purchased Frank Strother’s interest in the Junction City Sentinel and became a partner with Abel Wheeler Chabin.  Mr. Chabin purchased the Sentinel in 1890 and previously owned a newspaper and been the postmaster in Onaga, Kansas.  The new firm was Chabin & Shadinger.  Ed and Jessie moved to a house on 6th Street west of Madison Street in Junction City.  This partnership was short lived when Ed sold his interest four months later and returned to Abilene.

Ed and Jessie had two children: Gladys Lorena (Hogan) (b. 1893) and Gerald Charles (b. 1901).  While in Abilene, Ed was involved in several fraternal and civic organizations.  As a young man, he was a member of the Camp 63, Sons of Veterans, which as the name implies included sons of civil war veterans.  Ed held leadership positions in the Knights of Pythias, Cyrus Chapter No. 25 Royal Arch Mason, Order of the Eastern Star, Fraternal Aid Association, and Abilene Rotary Club (President 1928-1929).  He was a member of the Commercial Club (currently the Abilene Area Chamber of Commerce) and served as President of the Abilene Municipal Band for several years between 1900-1920.  At one time he was a member of the Grace Reform Church, but transferred his membership to the Presbyterian Church in which he served as a Trustee.  Jessie was also involved in the church, Order of the Eastern Star, and Job’s Daughters.

By 1894, Charles’ skill and knowledge of the printing business was substantial and he decided to start a job printing business.  In September of that year, he partnered with D. Tell Nutt in the job printing firm of Shadinger & Nutt.  The Shadinger & Nutt Printing Company occupied part of the 2nd floor in the old Post Office building, which was a three-story building at the southeast corner of Cedar and NW. 3rd Streets (currently occupied by John Purvis, Attorney and Xpressions Salon).  In February 1895, Shadinger & Nutt attempted to purchase the Abilene Dispatch newspaper, however, agreeable terms could not be reached.  After this failed attempt the print shop relocated to the 2nd floor over the Gleissner Drug Store near the southeast corner of Broadway and NW. 3rd (currently USD 435 Administrative Offices).  D. Tell Nutt decided to sell his interest and the firm was dissolved in July 1895.  He would continue to work for the firm at different times.

AD 3-7-1895

Newspaper Advertisement – Abilene Dispatch, March 7, 1895

Business Card

Business Card

In June 1898, Ed and Roy Shadinger along with Jabez Campbell Gault purchased the struggling Abilene Monitor newspaper from Ulysses Sanford Grant Gaines.  They consolidated the print shop with the newspaper office.  Mr. Gault was the newspaper editor and the ownership firm was Shadinger Brother & Gault.  However, this partnership lasted only 4 months when it was dissolved.  The print shop moved to the 214 N. Cedar Street (now occupied by Black & Company Realtors and Clippers Edge).  The brother’s new firm was Shadinger & Shadinger (Shadinger Brothers).  Always investing in the business, they introduced a gasoline engine to operate the presses in 1899.  Roy sold his interest in the company to E. G. Kenyon of Yates Center in May 1900.  The new firm name was Shadinger & Kenyon.  Roy moved to Los Angeles, California and became a very successful salesman and manager for the American Type Foundry Company.

Shadinger printing interior 4

Shadinger Print Shop When Located on the 2nd Floor of 214 N. Cedar Street

Shandinger priting interior 2

102 NW 3rd labeledW. W. Bolles sold the property at 102 NW. 3rd Street to Ed in January 1902 and the printing business promptly occupied the space. Today, the west half of the Benjamin F. Edwards office sits on this site. In 1904, improvements were made to the office and an engine room was added to the building.  Improvements were made to the 2nd floor for an apartment, which the Shadinger’s lived in for a short period of time after they sold their house on E. 1st Street.  The business would remain at this location until March of 1911.

Jacob L. Kruger, the building contractor, sold the property at the south corner of Mulberry and NW. 2nd Street to the Shadinger Printing Company in January 1911.  This site is now occupied by the eastern most building at the Webb Home Center.  The partners of the business at the time of this purchase were Ed, Ed’s brother-in-law, Lawson Eugene Jeffcoat, and Benjamin Frank Myers, who had been an employee of the print shop for a number of years.  During the first week of March, the employees of the print shop moved the machinery and supplies to the newly purchased building.   When the move was complete, Charles treated the staff to an oyster dinner at the Home Rule Café (108 NW. 2nd) and a picture show.  Ed bought Frank Myers’ interest in the business in 1921.

Shandinger printing interior 1Throughout the years dozens of employees worked in the print shops.  Among those were: W. B. Shawhan (1900), J. W. Saunders (1901), Theodore Wilvert (1903), Raymond Sanborn (1905-1907), D. Tell Nutt (1903-1907), Dr. Baldwin (1909), Francis Morton Duckworth, Frank Clarence Curts (1909), Elmer Clark (1914-1915), Blanche Mikulecky (1913-1915), Herbert Pike (1916-1917), Benjamin Frank Myers (1899-1921), Christopher Dunable (1913-1914), George McCormick (1916), Charles Lambing (1918), and Gerald Shadinger (1922).

Shandinger printing interior 3The Shadinger’s moved their residence more often than their business changed.  The family lived at a house on NW. 2nd Street between Walnut and Elm Streets in 1898.  That July, there was a barn fire in the middle of the block and four properties including the Shadinger house was threatened. The Johntz house at the corner of Walnut and NW. 3rd Streets was also threatened.  Three barns were destroyed and all of the homes were spared.  The Shadinger’s moved to the Boutin house at NW. 4th and Spruce Streets in October 1898 and less than a year later they moved into the Trott House on NW. 3rd Street.  In 1900, Ed purchased a cottage on E. 1st Street and made significant improvements to the property, which he would sell in 1904 at the time he purchased 102 NW. 3rd Street.  By 1906, they lived at 114 NW. 5th Street.

Ed purchased the vacant lot at the northwest corner of E. 1st and Olive Streets and built the 2-story home addressed 221 E. 1st Street.  They moved into this house in May 1908.  Ed again purchased a vacant lot at the corner of Cedar and 10th Streets and started excavating a basement in October 1912.  In January 1913, the family moved into the Carroll Boarding House at 107 W. 1st Street while their new home at 911 N. Cedar Street was being built.  They moved into the new house that July.  Four years later, this house would be purchased by Alfred Doidge.  By 1918, the Shadingers had purchased the home at 910 NW. 2nd Street.

Jessie died unexpectedly on April 12, 1936 at the Dickinson County Memorial Hospital in Abilene after a short illness.  Her funeral was held two days later at the Presbyterian Church.  Gerald would eventually become the manager and took care of the business after Ed’s day to day involvement ceased.  After Jessie’s death Ed lived at 205 E. 1st Street, with his daughter’s family.  Ed died 5 years later (August 30, 1941) in Abilene and his funeral was held at the Presbyterian Church.  The couple are laid to rest in the Abilene Cemetery.

After his father’s death, Gerald owned and operated the print shop.  In the early 1940’s the business was moved to 207 NE. 3rd Street.  In the 1950’s, Gerald took on a partner and it became Shadinger-Wilson Printing.  The Abilene Reflector-Chronicle purchased the business and only held it for a short period of time.  Ralph Hilton bought it from the newspaper in 1971 and continues to operate as Abilene Printing and Office Products Company at 207 NE. 3rd Street.





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