JAMES L. PHELPS
Deputy county clerk, Independence, Missouri, dates his birth in the neighboring state of Illinois. He was born in Ottawa, LaSalle county, January 1, 1855, 9th in the family of 11 children - 5 sons and 6 daughters - of B. T. and Margaret (Reynolds) Phelps. B. T. Phelps was of Virginia birth, born in Bedford county in 1810, while his wife was born in Kentucky. In 1882 he came with his family to Independence, Missouri, and here passed the closing years of his life and died, his death occurring June 1, 1895. Mrs. Phelps survives him and still makes her home in this city.
James L. Phelps was reared and educated in Ottawa and is a graduate of the high school of that place with the class of 1874. After completing his high-school course he took up the study of law, and in 1878 was admitted to the bar. From that time until 1885 he made his home in Arkansas and Kansas, practicing law in Newport, Arkansas, and Atchison, Kansas, and in the last named year removed to Independence, Missouri. Here he was for a time employed by different abstract and loan firms, gained a wide acquaintance and soon became a favorite among the people with whom he had dealings. In January, 1889, he was appointed marshal of the court of appeals in Kansas City, which position he ably filled until January, 1895, and since then has been chief deputy in the office of the county clerk at Independence.
Mr. Phelps was married in Independence, August 7, 1883, to Miss Nellie Gregg, a native of Jackson county, Missouri, and a daughter of Samuel and Maria (Bryant) Gregg, now residents of Independence.
All his life Mr. Phelps has taken a deep and enthusiastic interest in political affairs, always affiliating with the democratic party. While a resident of Atchison he was elected to the office of Justice of the Peace, which he filled most acceptably; and indeed all his services in the various positions which he has occupied have ever been characterized by fidelity and efficiency. He has been a member of the Christian church since 1889, and since 1892 has been a deacon in the church.
This page was last updated August 2, 2006.