Alex Kinder, deceased, was one of the brave men who, at the call for aid offered their services to the government and upon the altar of their country laid down their lives in defense of the Union. He was born in Ireland, in the land which has furnished so many valiant soldiers and intrepid heroes to the Union cause. His birth occurred about 1820, and he was of Scotch-Irish lineage. During his boyhood he crossed the Atlantic to America with his father, Samuel Kinder, who became a farmer of Illinois, and during his youth the subject of this review assisted in the work of the home farm in the Prairie state. Through the summer months he followed the plow and aided in harvesting the crops, while in the winter season he pursued his education in the public schools of the neighborhood. In 1851 he was united in marriage to Miss Millie White, a native of Fleming county, Kentucky, a daughter of Isleof and Sarah White, who had a family of six children. Her mother died when she was quite young. Mr. and Mrs. Kinder began their domestic life upon a farm in Illinois, and to them were born five children, namely: John, who is now living in Mission township, Brown county; R. C., who is a resident of Fort Worth, Texas; Mary, wife of John Lorimer, a merchant of Willis, Kansas; and Martha, wife of Frederick Hoyt, of Mission township, Brown county.
During the epoch which followed the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Kinder the question of the extension of slavery into the territories was of the greatest possible moment and led to the creation of a new party, formed to prevent its further extension. Mr. Kinder watched with interest the progress of events in the South, noted the threats which were made to secede in the event of the election of Abraham Lincoln to the presidency, and after the inauguration of the war he responded to the call for three hundred thousand troops in 1862, which patriotic spirit prompted his enlisting as one of the defenders of the Union, and he became a member of Company E, Seventy-seventh Illinois Infantry. Donning the blue he marched to the front with the members of his regiment and was always found at his post of duty until he laid down his life on the altar of his country, his death occurring at Milliken's Bend, Mississippi, on the 10th of March, 1863, when he was forty-three years of age. Such men deserve ever to be held in grateful remembrance for what they have done, and as long as this country continues people will be thrilled by the story of the bravery and sacrifice of the noble sons of the Union who went to the South and gave up their lives in order that the national government might be upheld.
Left with the care of five little children, Mrs. Kinder deserves great credit for the excellent work which she accomplished in rearing her family. Her daughters are now married and her sons are successful business men. In 1877 she moved from Peoria county, Illinois, to Kansas, taking up her abode in Brown county. Here she owns a farm of one hundred and thirty-eight acres, which is under a high state of cultivation and well improved, being supplied with excellent modern buildings, including a good residence and substantial outbuildings. Everything about the place is neat and thrifty in appearance and forms a good home for the mother who so bravely and ably cared for her family when deprived of her husband's protection and guidance. Mrs. Kinder is a member of the United Presbyterian church and is a lady whose many excellent qualities have won her the esteem of all with whom she has been brought in contact.
J. A. Kinder, her son, who has charge of the old homestead, was born in Illinois, in 1856. He was educated in the public schools, and in 1887 he married Miss Rosa Smith, daughter of Robert Smith, deceased, who was one of the pioneer settlers of Brown county. She is also a sister of Hon. Henry A. Smith, of this county, and is a lady of refinement and culture who presides with gracious hospitality over her pleasant home. Mr. and Mrs. Kinder have one child, Vernon Ray, who is now eleven years of age. The parents are members of the Presbyterian church and take an active interest in its welfare and growth. In politics Mr. Kinder is a Republican. He is regarded as one of the progressive and enterprising citizens of his township, and manifests a deep interest in everything pertaining to its welfare and progress along social, educational, material and moral lines.