Biography of Glocus P. Crosby

Glocus P. Crosby. There are few men better known in Ottawa County than Glocus P. Crosby, who had been an active and useful resident of Minneapolis for forty-five years, is county surveyor and is a veteran of the Civil war. He had seen this section of Kansas develop and had done his full part both in personal effort and in professional activities. Mr. Crosby was born October 7, 1843, at Piketon in Pike County, Ohio, and is the elder of two sons born to his parents, Ezra and Elizabeth (Maddox) Crosby.

The early Crosbys were New England people, and Cummins Crosby, the grandfather of Glocus P. Crosby, was born in Maine in 1799. He was a lumberman and in early manhood took part in the strife that often broke out on the boundary line between Maine and New Brunswick, which was mainly confined to the logging camps. He came to Kansas later in life, retiring from all activity in 1892, although still a man of remarkable vigor. He died in 1897 at the home of his son in Minneapolis, being then aged ninety-eight years.

Ezra Crosby, father of Glocus P. Crosby, was born near the Penobscot River in Maine in 1820, and was reared to manhood there. He then went to Pike County, Ohio, and engaged in work at his trade at Piketon, having learned the mannfacture of brick. In 1853 he moved to Fayette County, Iowa, and there was engaged in brickmaking until 1872, in which year he carne to Minneapolis, Kansas. Here he established a general store and later a drug store, being a man of great enterprise, and continued in merchandising during the rest of his active life, his death occurring at Minneapolis in 1903, his years not reaching those of his father, but being indieative of a robust New England heritage to longevity not altogether unusual. In the meanwhile, in 1862, Ezra Crosby proved his loyalty and patriotism by enlisting for service in the Civil war, entering the Thirty-eighth Iowa Volunteer Infantry. He saw hard service, participating in the siege of Vicksburg, in the dangerous guerilla warfare along the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River, and was in the conflict at Island No. 10, but survived all the hazards of war and returned safely to his home and quietly resumed peaceful pursuits. In West Union, Iowa, he was married to Elizabeth Maddox, who was born in 1821, on the Atlantie Ocean while her parents were crossing from Scotland to the United States. They settled near Columbus, Ohio, and Mrs. Crosby grew up there. She died at Minneapolis, Kansas, in 1888, the mother of two sons: Glocus P. and Loren E., the latter of whom died at Fort Collins, Colorado, at the age of fifty-five years.

Glocus P. Crosby attended the country schools in Fayette County, Iowa, but made his best educational record in mathematics and when only twelve years old began to be interested in the principles of surveying. In fact he displayed a natural talent in that direction, and all through the years that followed before he found the opportunity to perfect his knowledge in this art, both eye and hand were in training. Many a weary hour of marching during his service as a soldier in the Civil war was lightened by his knowledge of contour, form, area and distance, a surveyor’s conception that his ordinary comrade neither took interest in or understood.

In 1862 he enlisted in the same regiment as did his patriotic father, and he took part in the same battles. He was appointed an orderly to General Steele and carried the dispatch that gave the orders to the different commanders to advance and flght in what proved to be the closing hattle of the war, that of Fort Blakely, Alabama, April 9, 1865. Notwithstanding his hazardous office, Mr. Crosby escaped all serious injuries and returned to his home practically uninjured. He had always taken a deep interest in the Grand Army of the Republic and is a valued member of Minneapolis Post No. 47.

After his military duties had been bravely discharged Mr. Crosby returned to Iowa. and followed surveying there until he came to Minneapolis, Kansas, in 1872. In 1878 he was elected county surveyor of Ottawa County and served two terms and then, after an intermission, was appointed county surveyor by Governor Gliek. In 1900 he was again elected to this office, to which he had been continuously reelected ever since, this evidence of public approval being not only a testimonial to his skill and professional accuracy, but to his personal character as well. In Mr. Crosby Ottawa County had an efficient and honest official.

In 1866, at West Union, Fayette County, Iowa, Mr. Crosby was married to Miss Mary A. Thompson, who came to Iowa from Cincinnati, Ohio, and they have four children, namely: Iona, the wife of J. E. Davis, who is employed at Minneapolis, Kansas; N. G., who is a resident of Denver, Colorado; Almeda, who is the wife of S. E. Jackson, and they reside at Santa Anna, California; and Elizabeth H., who is the wife of Pearl Davis, and they reside at Medford, Oregon.

Mr. Crosby had always been identified with the republican party and is old enough to remember its birth. Its principles have always appealed to his sense of right and he had given it his hearty support. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church at Minneapolis and to this and other religious organizations he had been as generous as his circumstances would permit. In 1905 Mr. Crosby erected his comfortable modern residence on Ross Avenue in this city.


Connelley, William E. A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans. Chicago : Lewis, 1918. 5v. Biographies can be accessed from this page: Kansas and Kansans Biographies.

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