Orlando Delbert Hobbs, also known as "Dell" or "O.D." was born in Pierceville, Ripley Co., Indiana, on Nov. 9, 1861. He was the son of William Hobbs (b. @1827 in Maryland) and Eliza Roszell(b. June 15,1822 in Kentucky; d. Dec. 5, 1879 in Franklin twp, Ripley Co.). The 1860 census shows evidence of a previous marriage of Eliza (to Parker Ingles), and 4 children born of that marriage, Perry Ingles, Elizabeth, Parker & Josephine (twins), living with them. Dell's brothers and sisters were: George, John, Orie, Edward, Ella (died young), and Grant. The family shows up on the 1860, 1870, and 1880 census for Ripley County, Indiana. In 1882, Dell, brother John W., and John's family moved to Pottawatomie Co., Kansas. Dell married Lillian Allen Myers in 1887, and their first child, Bess Louella Hobbs was born March 20, 1888, at St. Marys. The opening of the Cherokee Strip in Oklahoma gave many young families the promise of their own land. Dell desperately wanted a place of his own, so, accompanied by his brother John, and his 2 brother-in-laws, William P. Myers (28 yrs old) and Wilson Allen Myers (26 yrs old), they set out for Arkansas City, Ks., the northern most registration point. On Sept. 15, 1893, he wrote in a letter to his wife and baby from the strip. He complained about the terrible dust, and the thick crowd of people. "When we went to register Wednesday at 9 o'clock, we formed in a line 11/2 miles from the booth, 2 deep. We waited until Thursday noon, laying in line all night." But he says that he never got discouraged. "I neaver was in the notion of giving up or coming back. I am bound to get me a home if possible." His next letter dated 3 days later, carries a different tune. "I would hardley take a claim as a gift the grass looks like it had been planted with a corn planter.... the dust is so thick you can not see a block. The race was terrible many who got claims are leaving saying if they would give them to them they would not take them." Dell said in his second letter he did not make the race, and would explain when he got home. The reason to this writer is unknown. Many men and women were killed, being trampled by horses and masses of people and wagons. There were alot of Pottawatomie County boys there to make the race, he reveals in his letter. The people mentioned were: Blaylock, Oliver Knapp, John Willard, Chas Crooks, John Gillard, Mr Jones, and Sam Baily. Dell returned from the strip and settled back into farming. His second child, Myers James Hobbs (after his mother's maiden name) was born July 5, 1894. Six years later, his third child , Winifred Mabel Hobbs, was born on May 23, 1900. He had always been active in Republican politics and, in 1902 he ran for office of Sheriff, but was narrowly defeated. In 1904, he ran again, and was elected by overwhelming vote because he had made many friends due to his "clean and manly canvas that he made two years ago" as reported by the Wamego Times, Oct 6, 1904. His wife's uncle, Thomas E. Rose was elected Probate Judge the same year. Dell appointed his brother-in-law, Wm. Myers of St. Clere, as Under Sheriff in Jan, 1905. There are many interesting stories regarding his years as Sheriff, the most interesting being the case of Charlie Trude. (See separate article on Charlie Trude.) O.D. was re-elected in 1906 by a large majority, and appointed his 19 year old daughter, Bess, as Deputy. She had charge of the jail when her father and the under-sheriff were absent. She was a fine shot and prisoners stood more in awe of her than they did of her father. Lillian and Dell were later divorced and he married Rosa Weber in 1922. He lived the rest of his life in Louisville, died Aug 5, 1942, and is buried in the Louisville Cemetery. Bess Louella Hobbs - m. (1) Carden Cloe Rice Aug 17, 1910 in Alliance, Ne., one child born of this union: Delline Charlotte Rice (m. Hurshell L. Zigler. They have three children, Hurshell Dell Zigler, Kim Lee Zigler, Phyllis Eileen Zigler. (2) Harry L. Wilson, (3) Carden Cloe Rice, d. 1954, bur. Haxton, Co. (4) William Shears; Bess died Nov. 24, 1965, and is buried in Holyoke, Co. Myers James Hobbs - m. Aug 25, 1915 in Bridgeport Ne. to Maurice Vena Mitchell; d. Feb 7, 1968 in Bridgeport, Ne. Three children born of this union: (1) Virginia Mitchelene Hobbs; b. Feb 26, 1917; m. Milan Glassburn June 30, 1946. She resides near Sidney, Ne. (2) Thornton Winston Hobbs; b. June 20, 1918 in Bridgeport, Ne.; m. Lena Margaret Reed Oct 19, 1941. They reside in Independence, Mo. They have three girls; Judith Lynne Hobbs Tilton, Jacqueline Louise Hobbs Combs, and Linda Sue Hobbs Combs, all residing in the Kansas City area. (3) Thelma Helen Hobbs; b. Dec 16, 1921; m. George E. Leese Oct. 29, 1942; they reside near Chicago, Ill. Winifred Mabel Hobbs - m. Feb 24, 1917 in Hot Springs, SD. to Theodore William Myers (a 2nd cousin); d. Apr 23, 1952 in Alliance, Ne. To this union four children were born: James '(Bo)wman' Myers, Elizabeth 'Castle' Myers, Gwendolyn 'Corrine' Myers, and Theodore '(Buck)ley' Myers.
WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Mar 24, 1904 last pg The RECORDER contains this week the announcement of O. D. Hobbs of Emmet township as a candidate for the nomination of the office of sheriff. Mr. Hobbs was a candidate two years ago, but was defeated by J. H. Cooper. It was conceded by all that whoever should be the nominee on the republican ticket at the last election that the race would be a hard one. Mr. Hobbs by his honorable and straightforward canvass won many friends in that campaign. Many people think now that the election of a sheriff by the republicans does not seem more difficult than that of other offices, that Mr. Hobbs should be given an opportunity to make the race again. He is entirely competent to fill the position and is a man of excellent character. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Apr. 29, 1904 pg 4 REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES. ___________ Names and Pictures of Candidates Seeking the Nomination for Sheriff. ___________ SKETCH OF EACH CANDIDATE. ___________ The following are the republican candidates for the office of sheriff of Pottawatomie county. They are a good lot of people. B.J. Allen Clear Creek is well known in the northern part of the county has considerable acquaintance in other sections. As trustee of his township, he proved a good official and the fact that he was elected year after year in one of the strongest fusion townships in the county shows that he is very popular at home. He is a man of excellent character and has always been an active worker in the Republican party. ______________ O.D. Hobbs was the republican candidate two years ago and made the race when it was know that chances were against him. Now, that there is a good opportunity to win out in this office, he and his friends think that he should have another chance. He is a man of excellent reputation and would if elected make a good official. Mr. Hobbs was the central committeeman of St. Clere township for many years and very seldom missed a meeting of the committee. ______________ G.B. Merritt of Blue township, who seeks the office of sheriff, was born in eastern Tennessee, Union county. He came to Kansas 46 years ago and has lived in Blue township for the past thirty-five years. He served five years as constable of his township and was census enumerator in 1900 and has held other minor offices in Blue township. This is the first time that he has ever been a candidate for any county office. He has always been an active worker in the Republican party. While his township is still a fusion one politically, the republican vote there has increased many fold since the populist sweep of 1890. Mr. Merritt has the ability to make a good official and would undoubtedly give the people if he should be elected the best service he could. ________________ C.D. Ladner of Lone Tree township has a laudable ambition to serve the people of this county in the capacity of sheriff. He is a native of the county and has always lived in the neighborhood where he now resides. He is a thrifty farmer and is well known about Wheaton and Onaga. He stands well in the communities where he is known and would undoubtedly perform the duties of sheriff in a creditable manner. The RECORDER regrets that so far it has been unable to secure a picture of Mr. Ladner from which to get a cut made. He is a right good looker but those of our readers who are not acquainted with him and have no better source of information will have to take our word at the present time for his looks. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Oct 13, 1904 pg 7 COUNTY CORRESPONDENCE ___________ ALONG THE BLUE ___________ We wonder what B.J. Allen thinks he is going to do with the late Republican convention staring him in the face. When a man spends four five hundred dollars to get a nomination, and then gets beaten, it is time for him to quit we think. Mr. Allen says, so the papers say that every delegate to the late republican convention promised to vote for him. Mr. Allen knows that is not true, I know several myself that never promised Mr. Allen to vote for him. We understand Mr. Allen did what he could two years ago to defeat some parts of the republican ticket. We have no use for such republican candidates. Mr. Allen has at last landed where he belongs in the Democratic party. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - November 3, 1904 COOPER'S PRICE $200. _________ About the Same as a Good Farm Horse. _________ Would Have stayed on the Ticket for that Amount. _________ Proposition Turned Down. ________ The following letter appeared in the Westmoreland Signal last week: To the Voters of Pottawatomie County: I wish to say just a few words in regard to the articles in Bro. Hill's RECORDER, of last week's issue. He says, "The report is current that J. H. Cooper has entered into a solemn compact with this candidate (meaning Bennie Allen) to give him his support on condition that he shall be made deputy sheriff," and right after this he says, "Of course, Cooper knows that Allen will be beaten a thousand votes." Ha, ha, How does that sound? Me knowing that Allen will be beaten a thousand votes, and still working for deputyship under him? The insane asylum has plenty of inmates who could write a newspaper article that would sound more consistent and more sensible than that. Now, so far as my withdrawing my name from being a candidate for treasurer is concerned, I wish to say, and say it truthfully, that I withdrew on my own account, and without Mr. Giltner or any of his friends asking me to do so, and I believe my friends will bear me out in the statement that it was the best and only thing for me to do, knowing that it was a sure defeat for myself and Mr. Giltner too for both to run. Now, so far as being promised a deputyship is concerned, Mr. Allen has never mentioned such a thing to me, nor I to him. Even if he had promised, would it be such a disgrace to Mr. Allen to appoint me as his deputy, that people ought to vote against him because of such an abominable crime? No, gentlemen, I would not accept deputy sheriff under any consideration. Now, Bro. Hill, be manly with me, if you can, for I am not running for office, and do not care to be lied about, nor will I go into a newspaper controversy with you. Thanking the voters of Pottawatomie county, for the honors they have conferred upon me in the past in electing me to office for the past nine years, I remain yours truly, J. H. Cooper. J. H. Cooper claims in the above that now that he is a private citizen not a candidate for office that the RECORDER should leave him alone. The RECORDER believes that a man who takes an nomination for the purpose of attempting to sell out to keep on or off a ticket is an insult in a campaign to those that are in favor of clean politics. Mr. Cooper says that he got off the independent ticket because if he remained upon the ticket neither he nor Abe Giltner, jr., could be elected treasurer. This may be true, but, Mr. Cooper's love of democracy has it would seem a commercial value as well as a sentimental one. A plain statement of facts regarding his efforts to be induced to stay on the ticket will doubtless be of interest to the voters of Pottawatomie county. Before Mr. Cooper withdrew from office "on his own account" J.W. Shiner went to a county officer and said that if M.R. Johnson would pay J.H. Cooper $200 he would remain on the independent ticket. The matter was referred to Mr. Johnson, who said that before he would enter into any deal to keep Mr. Cooper on the ticket that if necessary he would be defeated. The decision was reported to Mr. Shiner. After this Mr. Cooper with drew as he says in the interest of Abe Giltner, jr., the democratic nominee. It seems as he says that it was the best thing that he could do. The RECORDER does not know that Mr. Cooper authorized Mr. Shiner to attempt to make such a deal as was proposed, but it is not probable that Mr. Shiner would have made such a proposition unauthorized. The RECORDER is in favor of honesty in politics as well as elsewhere. It dislikes also to tell mean things about anyone and frequently remains silent when it probably should not. It does seem in this case that since the independent ticket was nominated professedly in the interest of clean politics and in opposition to political dickering, that the efforts of a part of that ticket in attempting to sell out should be shown up. The secret meetings and political dickering necessary to get the so-called fusion forces together were frequent and long. The "great common people" were not consulted in these matters at all. The bosses that fixed things up expect the ordinary people to vote for so-called democrats, so-called populists or a so-called republican just as directed by the fixers. Had Johnson put up the cash necessary, independents would have been expected to vote for Cooper in the interest of good government. Since the cash was not forthcoming they are expected to vote for Giltner in the name of reform. The RECORDER believes in supporting a party that puts up candidates for office to stay until after election. Such a party represents principles. A party or set of men that put up candidates only for the purpose of having them dicker with some one else is unworthy of the support of good men in any way. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Jan 12, 1905 NEW COUNTY OFFICERS. Sketches of the Men Who Commenced their Terms as County Officers Last Monday. ____________ They Will Make Competent Officials. ____________ O.D. Hobbs, who was elected to the office of sheriff last fall by over 1,200 majority, is believed to be in every respect competent to fill the important office of sheriff. He is a man of good character and is popular with the people generally. The RECORDER believes that he will continue to grow in favor with the people as they know him better. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - May 3, 1906 ---------- O.D. Hobbs O.D. Hobbs, sheriff is a candidate for re-election. He is serving his first term and is making an excellent official. He is careful and accurate in his work. There will undoubtedly be no opposition to him in the coming convention. He has made many friends during his present term and the people are pleased to continue him in his present position. The sheriff earns all the money he gets out of his office, but Mr. Hobbs is not afraid of hard work and is willing to do more of it. (May 3, 1906) - cont. Sheriff Hobbs was quite sick a few days this week, but is able now to be about again. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Nov, 8, 1906,pg 5 O.D. Hobbs was the only republican county candidate that carried St. Marys township this year. -pic- WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Jan 17, 1907 Myers Hobbs has been sick. COUNTY OFFICERS ________ Step Down and out of Their Respective Offices and Their Successors are in Charge. ________ THEY HAVE MADE GOOD OFFICIALS ... O.D. Hobbs, sheriff is making good in his office and has entered upon his second term. He has grown in favor constantly since he took his office. He attends to his official duties carefully and fearlessly. WESTMORELAND RECORDER - Feb 7, 1907 pg 1 OFFICERS' SALARIES _________ A Statement of About What the County Offices are Worth to the Parties Holding Them. _________ SALARIES TOO SMALL IN SOME CASES _________ Most of the county offices of Pottawatomie county are not so renumerative as they were some years ago. The legislature a few years ago reduced the salaries or the fees of the office as the case might be. In some of the offices the fees or a part of them above a certain figure must be turned into the county treasury. This law is hardly fair. If the fees paid by individuals to county officers is excessive, the fees should be reduced and the parties having the work done should receive the benefit. A county office certainly is not intended to be a matter revenue for the public. In Pottawatomie county, the salaries and fees of the different offices amount to about the following: The office of the probate judge has steadily improved in the matter of salary from year to year. Only a few years ago it was worth considerably less than a thousand dollars. The office the past year paid about $1450. The probate judge keeps all the fees of his office up to $1100. He is allowed to keep all his fees amounting to about $250 a year on account of the prohibitory law. These fees are not governed as some suppose by the amount of liquor sold by the druggists or by the number of permits. He receives the $250 a year for doing the work connected with the prohibitory law from the county and gets no fees from the druggists. His fees would be the same if there was not a permit in the county. He also keeps his fees for officiating in case he marries a couple and for sitting in juvenile court cases. He must turn over one half of all other fees in excess of $1,100. The county gets a small revenue from this office, if the fees on account of the prohibitory law are not taken into consideration. The office of sheriff a few years ago was one of the best paying positions in the county. Now, when the expenses of the position is considered it is probably the poorest. The fees actually collected the past year were $840.65. Those booked and uncollected were $545.95, making the total fees charged $1,386.60. The sheriff keeps his fees up to $1,100 and turns one half over that amount into the county treasury. The sheriff must in order to be ready to attend to his duties promptly keep a deputy and in this county meets the expenses himself. The commissioners would be allowed to pay $400 a year in addition to the fees for a deputy, but the board in this county has not done so. In most of the counties of the state the county furnishes the sheriff with a residence owned by the county. Pottawatomie county has no sheriff's residence.