12. Lewis Fletcher Linn Casebolt

This page was last updated 21 January 2011 -- rak.

My great grandfather, Lewis Fletcher Linn Casebolt was born 27 March 1854 in the Fairville neighborhood of Miami Township, 5-6 miles south of the town of Miami in Saline County, Missouri, to Martha(Terrill) and George T. Casebolt. Linn was named for Lewis Fletcher Linn a famous Missouri Confederate Senator who had come to Missouri from the same part of Virginia that Linn's grandfather Casebolt had come from.

In 1884 the family moved to the Roundmound neighborhood north east of Cedarvale, Chautauqua County, Kansas. Linn and his brother Walt brought their possessions in two 2-mule team wagons and a horse and bugg; his wife and two babies came as far as Grenola by train. Eighty acres of land had already been purchased. Only 8-10 acres of this had ever been plowed, all the rest was the native Kansas tall prairie grass (which bison loved so much) knee to waist high. There were only two trees. The first year they lived in the basement of the "old" Ward place in which house cousin John Wiley then lived.

Linn died 30 Nov 1895 and is buried in Roundmound Cemetery which had been created in land donated by Linn.

Anyone who studies the history of our branch of the Casebolt family will quickly find that this man was perhaps the most beloved and most influential of us all. He he was widely known in southeastern Kansas as a kindly, loving, and caring human being who would go out of his way for anyone in need. In succeeding generations virtually every Casebolt family in this line in every generation has had a Lin, Linn or Lynn in loving memory of him. And that includes my youngest son -- Karl Linn Kraus.

My older cousin, Mrs. Dewey Pipes, when a young girl knew him. She explained to me in the 1960's that he also may have been one of the very strongest of us spiritually and in terms of character. She believed that he was terribly afflicted with manic depression, many years before it was diagnosed and could be treated. Nevertheless he waged a long, painful and successful struggle against it. Then, tragically, in his 40's he contracted typhoid fever. He almost beat that too, but ultimately the mind-bending effects of the fever became too much additional weight for him to bear -- and he committed suicide -- although thanks to an alert brother-in-law he was not immediately successful.

Cousin Jean Feaster in 2001 sent me the following obituary which I have edited slightly: The Cedar Vale Commercial, December 6, 1895, page 2: Attempted Suicide. One of the most shocking news that has reached this city for some time was the report on Thanksgiving night that L.F. Casebolt had attempted suicide. He had gone to the barn and with a rope made of binding twine succeeded in suspending himself by the neck from some of the cross timbers. It happened however, that his brother-in-law, who was visiting there at the time, came to the barn, discovered Mr. Casebolt unconsious and immediately cut him down giving the alarm to the neighbors. Physicians were hurriedly sent for and all that was possible was done to restore him to consciousness, but all in vain. He died at one o'clock Saturday morning in great agony. Mr. Casebolt, up to last September was a man of far above the average in physical and mental capacity, but he was taken down with typhoid fever while away on a business trip near Kansas City. He went through a very severe siege being delirious a great deal of the time. As he was about ready to start home, he took a relapse and had another very sick spell. After sufficiently recovering again, so he thought, he started home and arrived here about three weeks ago, in a very feeble condition and apparently in an unbalanced state of mind which is the only cause that can be attributed for this rash act.

In the death of Mr. Casebolt, our community loses one of its best citizens, one who had acquired a comfortable home and a host of friends. He leaves a sorrowing wife and five lovely children to remember him as a kind father and husband cherished in the memory of those who are left behind. The funeral services were held at the residence Sunday morning. Elder Lyon of the Christian Church conducting the services. While the A.O.U.W. of this city took charge of the burial.

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