James Solomon Life Sketch

(1876 - 1947)

James Solomon Conlin was born on December 4, 1876, in Muscatine County, Iowa. James married Cora Miles on June 19, 1901, in Onaga, Pottawatomie County, Kansas. James Solomon Conlin died on March 16, 1947, in Sabetha, Nemaha County, Kansas.


James Solomon Conlin, also known as Jim Conlin and J. S. Conlin, was born on December 4, 1876, in Muscatine County, Iowa, the oldest son of John Thomas Conlin and Mary Augusta Dill. Jim was named after his two grandfathers, paternal grandfather James Conlin and maternal grandfather Solomon Dill. Jim was born on his grandfather’s farm next to the Cedar River. While a young child, he and his family, his grandfather and his Aunt Margaret’s family moved further west to Taylor County, Iowa. A couple of years later, Jim’s father moved the family to Nemaha County, Kansas, where Jim lived for almost the rest of his life.

Jim was raised in the small town of Oneida, Kansas, with his three brothers and two sisters. Around the age of 18, Jim went to live with his aunt, Laura Dill Garrett. Laura’s husband Alexander Garrett was a grain dealer at the time and Jim learned the business from him.

When Jim returned to Oneida, he met his future wife Cora Miles. She was the daughter of the hotel proprietor, David Miles. In 1900 Cora moved with her family to Onaga, Kansas, where her father opened a hotel. Jim continued to court Cora in Onaga, a distance about 40 miles away.

On June 19, 1901, Jim married Cora Effie Miles, daughter of David Miles and Mahetable Casterline. Jim and Cora had the following known children:

  1. Harold Miles Conlin
  2. Cleo Lauree Conlin
  3. James Wendel Conlin

The family settled in Sabetha, Kansas, where Jim worked as an agricultural purchasing agent for Gregg Bros. Jim and Cora’s son Harold, known as “Jack”, and daughter Cleo were born in Sabetha.

Around 1909, Jim started working for T. M. Wherry lumber yard, owned by T. M. Wherry. In 1917 T. M. Wherry offered Jim a position as manager in the new lumber yard that he planned to open in Oneida, where Jim had grown up and where his parents still lived. Jim accepted the position and moved the family from Sabetha to Oneida. Oneida was a much smaller town, about 10 miles from Sabetha. Jim and his brother Ed built a new house for the family, which made the move a little easier. According to a news article in the Sabetha Herald years later, “Each year T. M. Wherry, owner and manager of the yards, instructed Conlin he had a vacation of two weeks due him, and only once in the entire 28 years did he leave his office. Then he went to Omaha and before a week was up he was back on the job.”

In 1923 as eldest child Jack left for college, Cora gave birth to another son James Wendell, also known as Jimmy or Little Jim. Jim became known as Big Jim. In 1924 daughter Cleo married Willis Wood and in 1927 son Jack married Wilhelmina Bressem. Cleo’s marriage ended in divorce in 1928, and Cleo’s son, Jack also known as Jackie, moved in with Jim and Cora while Cleo worked in Omaha, living with her older brother, Jack and his wife. Jimmy and Jackie were less than three years apart. When Cleo remarried a few years later, Jackie rejoined his mother and step-father.

Jim was an active community member of the small town of Oneida. According to his obituary, “Mr Conlin was a member of the Masonic lodge, Independent Order of Odd Fellows (I.O.O.F.), and the Woodmen. He served as secretary of the Oneida Masonic lodge for many years. He was civic minded and served as city clerk of Oneida for 20 years. He was a member of the Oneida cemetery board and took special pride in this community service. In whatever capacity he served, he gave it his wholeheartedly best.”

In 1945 Jim’s health began to fail. In early 1947, Jim’s youngest son, Jimmy wed Lois Carpenter. In the spring of 1947 Jim finally succumbed to “a long and serious illness” at St. Anthony hospital in Sabetha.

James Solomon Conlin died on March 16, 1947, in Sabetha, Nemaha County, Kansas, at the age of 71. Jim was buried in Oneida Cemetery, the same cemetery that he tended in life.

Genealogical Research and Life Sketch Updated: June 2022


Sources:

"United States Census, 1880," database with images, FamilySearch, James Conlin in household of John Conlin, Holt, Taylor, Iowa, United States; citing enumeration district , sheet , NARA microfilm publication T9 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), FHL microfilm .

"Iowa State Census, 1895," database with images, FamilySearch, James S Conlin in household of Alexander M Garrett, Louisa, Iowa, United States; citing p. 242, 1895, State Historical Society, Des Moines; FHL microfilm 1,022,076.

"United States Census, 1900," database with images, FamilySearch, James S Canlin in household of John Canlin, Gilman Township Oneida, Nemaha, Kansas, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 115, sheet 3A, family 52, NARA microfilm publication T623 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1972.); FHL microfilm 1,240,492.

"Kansas Marriages, 1840-1935", database, FamilySearch, James S. Conlin, 1901.

“Conlin, J S”, news item, Sabetha Herald (Sabetha, KS), January 23, 1908.

“Conlin, James”, news item, Sabetha Herald (Sabetha, KS), February 13, 1908.

"United States Census, 1910," database with images, FamilySearch, James Conlin, Sabetha Ward 1, Nemaha, Kansas, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 129, sheet 2A, family 32, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 450; FHL microfilm 1,374,463.

"Kansas State Census, 1915," database with images, FamilySearch, James S Conlin, Sabetha, Nemaha, Kansas, United States; citing Sabetha, Nemaha, Kansas, United States, 34, 4, Kansas Historical Society, Topeka.

"United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918", database with images, FamilySearch, James Soleman Conlin, 1917-1918.

"United States Census, 1920", database with images, FamilySearch, James Conlin, 1920.

"United States Census, 1930," database with images, FamilySearch, James Conlin, Oneida, Nemaha, Kansas, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 6, sheet 2A, line 19, family 43, NARA microfilm publication T626 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2002), roll 713; FHL microfilm 2,340,448.

"United States Census, 1940," database with images, FamilySearch, Kansas > Nemaha > Gilman Township, Oneida > 66-6 Gilman Township, Oneida City > image 3 of 6; citing Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940, NARA digital publication T627. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 - 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012.

“Conlin, James”. Obituary. Sabetha Herald (Sabetha, KS), March 12. 1947.

“Conlin, James”. Obituary. The Courier Tribune (Seneca, KS), March 17, 1947.

James Solomon genealogy research