Biography of David Henry Edelblute

Among the old established families still numerously and worthily represented in Riley County, is that of Edelblute. Almost sixty years have passed since its founder selected a tract of virgin land in the valley of Wild Cat Creek, built his cabin there, reared his family and passed the rest of an industrious and contented life. The owner of the old Edelblute homestead is David Henry Edelblute, a highly respected citizen of this county and at present a resident of the Village of Keats.

David Henry Edelblute was born in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania, August 4, 1843. His parents were David and Lydia (Conrad) Edelblute, both natives of Pennsylvania, the father born in Huntingdon County October 11, 1803, and the mother born September 10, 1809. Their marriage took place February 3, 1825, and the following children were born to them: William H., Nancy Jane, Eleanora, Nathan G., Samuel R., David Henry, Catherine, Rebecca, Mary Elizabeth and John George. In 1857 the family came to Kansas and located in what is now Wild Cat Township, and here the mother of David Henry died September 19, 1866, and the father, January 19, 1879. In Pennsylvania the father had been a charcoal burner, a factor in a great industry in that state at that time, but it offered no future for providing for a family of nine children, hence he became a pioneer in Kansas where wide prairies offered homes for the industrious. He was a hardworking man and during his twenty-two years of life in this state, he developed a fine agricultural property which further development by its present owner, had made into one of the very valuable farms of Riley County.

David Henry Edelblute was thirteen years old when he accompanied his parents to Kansas and he grew to manhood on his father’s farm. He had few of the educational advantages that now belong to children as their just heritage, but long association with others and reading had remedied any lack that he once may have felt and he is considered one of the well informed men of his village. He remained with his parents until he was twenty-six years of age, when he married and then established a home of his own. The death of his mother was the first break in the family and when the father died the children scattered and David Henry alone remained on the homestead which he purchased from the other heirs. Here he had continued general farming and stockraising and had been successful in his efforts and is numbered with the men of ample fortune in the township.

Mr. Edelblute was married April 18, 1870, to Miss Sarah C. Knapp, who was born in Essex County, New York, June 4, 1851, and died in 1911. She was a daughter of Lemuel Knapp, who came to Riley County in 1854. Mr. and Mrs. Edelblute had children as follows: Mary E., who is deceased; Harry C., who lives in Oklahoma; Nathan G., who is engaged in the drug business at Topeka; Jennie, who was graduated in 1900 from the Kansas State Agricultural College at Manhattan, is the wife of Harry Smethurst, of that city; Roy, who is a farmer in Riley County; Forrest, who is a resident of Kansas City, Missouri; Florence, who is the wife of I. N. Chapman; and Nona Ruth, who resided with her father.

While Mr. Edelblute always gives his vote to the republican party he is no politician and had never been willing to serve in a political office. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and in that body as in other directions he is known as a generous and benevolent man.



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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