Benjamin Jackson, father-in-law of both Squire Thomas Little and John Little, died in 1806.
Thereafter, it appears that the "Squire" divided his time between Jurist duties and
improving his Pennsylvania land. The "Squire" also took care of the disposition of Benjamin's estate.
On 25 Jan 1811, he purchased 160 acres on Muncy Creek from
John Lockard (Book 9, p. 316) and another 100 acres from Lockard
on 6 Jun 1814 (Book 12, p.128).
In 1815, he purchased, from Joseph Doty (son-in-law of Squire's
uncle Thomas) of New Jersey, 100 acres in Licking County, Ohio,
paying $11.00 an acre. There was no house, the land was partially
cleared, but it had a orchard. Before his move to Lycoming County, PA, Thomas
also sold several products in Philadelphia from his farm including
fruits and vegetables. According to his family, Thomas Little was
never satisfied in Pennsylvania as the lands did not meet their
expectations.. this comment is taken to mean the heavily forested area,
although beautiful, was not suited to farming.
On 6 Oct 1815, Thomas Little purchased from Theophilus 560 acres
on Bear Creek (No. 13 called Woodbridge) as well as 180 acres
on Loyalsock Creek for a total of $1000 (Book 12, p.129).
By the time he moved to Ohio, Thomas "Squire" Little owned 1000
acres in Pennsylvania, 180 acres of which he sold to his cousin
John Coryel Little (son of John) in 1833 (Book 19, p.87). He
retained ownership of the balance of land until 1857. He also held
title to land in Monmouth County, NJ until he sold it a few years
later to James Morris and Ferdinand Shibla.
During these years, he purchased two other farms of 100 acres or
more in Licking County and used them as tenant farms. He and his
son Theophilus raised prize pedigreed horses and bred Chester
White hogs for sale. He was never a candidate for office, but Squire
Little was politically active in that he was a Whig and interested in
the election of Henry Harrison in 1836 and 1840. He was also a
Captain of the Militia in Licking County for several years.
An excerpt from the old files of The Greenville Times, Ohio editorial page reads:
..We reflect as we stand by the grave of our more than
octogenarian friend that he was a connecting link in the ages past
and the age present, that he was the only man we ever knew who,
with his own eyes, saw Washington, and with his young eyes
witnessed the greatest event, occurring in the career of that great
and good man, his inauguration as the first President of the United
Source: Donald Campbell Little, 1951
Thomas "Squire Little by his wife Lydia had two children. Jane Little
married Jarod P. Bancroft. Theophilus Little married Eunice Weeks. He
was the surviving son of Thomas and became Theophlus, Sr., with
the birth of his own son, Theophilus, Jr. Theophilus, Sr. and Eunice are
buried next to his parents in the old Granville Cemetery in Licking County, Ohio.
In 1818, after setting up his own kiln, "Squire" Little built an 11-room
house. It was the first brick home built in Licking County and in
1951 was still a showplace in Granville. Thomas, Theophilus, and
grandsons Thophilus Jr., and Henry Jackson Little voted for
Abraham Lincoln for President in 1860.
There are nearly as many Littles named "Theophilus" in this story as their were "Johns" and "Thomases"
in the earlier decades. For the sake of clarity, here is a small chart that explains who each of these men were
in relation to one another:
.....1-Squire Thomas Little
Theophilus, Jr. was born 23 May 1830 in the big brick
house built by his grandfather. He married Sarah E. Taylor and
had three sons: Clifford Taylor Little (died age 2 yrs), Edward Campbell Little
and William Thomas "Will T." Little. They moved to Olathe, Kansas when
Will T. was four years old. In 1871, they moved to Abilene, Kansas
where Theophilus had established a lumberyard a year earlier.
During this time, Abilene was a wide-open cow town and was
known best as the "wickedest town on earth." Elected as
President of the Abilene City Council, Theophilus also acted as the
police judge during the time that "Wild Bill" Hickock was the town
marshal. As the acting Mayor of Abilene, Theophilus purchased the
city cemetery. He is perhaps best loved and remembered for
planting with his own hands the first of the shade trees that made
Abilene one of the most beautiful small towns in the state. You can read his own recollections of the city in
Theophilus Little and the Wickedest Town on Earth--Abilene, Kansas.
Will T. and Edward graduated and were both admitted to the
Kansas Bar. Theophilus followed his son Will T. to the new territory of
Oklahoma where he purchased land and became active in local
affairs. In 1892, he was appointed to the first "Board of Regents" of
the Oklahoma A&M College at Stillwater by Governor Abraham
Seay. Theophilus, his wife Sarah and Edward Campbell Little are all buried in
the Abilene Cemetery.
Edward Campbell Little was born 14 Dec 1858. Here are some salient facts in his life:
1-AB 1883 Class Valedictorian
2-BA 1886 Class Valedictorian
3-Editor, Kansas Review
4-Phi Kappa Psi
5-Admitted Kansas Bar 1886
6-Admited Bar of the Supreme Court 1892
7-Elected 'delegate at large' to the Republican
Nat'l Convention to nominate Benjamin Harrison for President 1892
8-Diplomatic Agent, Consul General and Minister Resident to
Egypt at age 33 under Harrison
Received the Grand Cordon of the Medjidieh from the Sultan
of Turkey for his diplomatic services
9-Supported William Jennings Bryan for President in 1896, making over 100 speeches in
Kansas for him
10-Formed a law office at Topeka (with ex-chief Justice David
Martin and Attorney General Louis Boyle). the law firm of Martin, Little and Boyle was opened
in 1897 while he was a Secretary to populist Governor, John W. Leedy.
11-1898-99 Lt. Col. Little took the 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry
to San Francisco and sailed to the Phillipines in command of its
1st Battalion, the Wyoming Battery and troop ship Newport. He
took part in no less than 10 engagements, commanding in several
battles in the absence of Col. Fred Funston.. Little received the Spanish
War Medal, The Phillipines Campaign medal and the
Congressional Campaign medal.
12-1908-Moved law practice to Kansas City, KS
13-1914- Nominated Justice, Kansas Supreme Court; defeated
14-1916- Elected as a Republican to the 65th US Congress during WW I
15-Relected to the 66th, 67th, and 68th Congresses
16-1924- Died June 24, age 65, while serving Congress
17-Buried in Abilene cemetery in Kansas
After the Spanish-American Was, he married Edna Margaret Steele, daughter of Leonard
James Steele, and resumed his law practice in Abilene, Kansas. Edna wrote, Works of Jesus (Paul Elder
& Co., San Francisco). She was also an active member of the DAR of some repute, and
politically active until her death in 1943 at Kansas City, Kansas. Her father served in the Civil War and was a
lineal descendant of John Steel, the founder of Hartford, Connecticut.
Edward and Edna moved in 1908 to Kansas City, KS, where he became an esteemed trial lawyer of note.
While serving in the US Congress, he was Chairman of the Revison of Laws Committee of the U. S. House.
He wrote the then current Code of the Laws of the United States between 1919-1924. (See Who's Who in America 1906-1924;
Congressional Directory; Congressional Record, Index 1917-1924)
His son Donald Campbell Little, born in Abilene in 1901, had a no
less illustrious career in law, politics and WWII, receiving the
Bronze Star and 5 campaign stars. Little was also a Phi Kappa
Psi, Delta Theta Phi (legal) and author. He was the grandson of Theophilus Jr.,
and descendant of Thomas "Squire" Little.
Donald was 53 when he wrote this account of the Little family. At that
time, Susan Heim, the wife of John Wesley Little, was the family
William Thomas Little (Will T.) participated in the land rush at the opening of the
Oklahoma Territory. He wrote and printed the first newspaper in the newly opened Unassigned
Lands. Named The Guthrie Getup, it came off the
press on April 28, 1889. In his salutory statement he wrote, "The Guthrie Getup prances
into the promised land at the head of the procession, and issues before one week after the
glorious 22nd of April, 1889."
Little suffered the same fate as many of the lesser known '89ers; historians largely
overlooked them. Where many of the land rush participants rushed in to grab a quick profit,
Little and thousands of other participants stayed. They built homes, started businesses
and raised families. From the very beginning they built Oklahoma history and wrote about it.
During his lifetime he was an editor, reporter, historian, farmer, and arborculturist. In 1890,
he compiled the new laws in the first volume of the Statutes of Oklahoma. In 1895, he
was the newly elected representative of the territorial legislature. During his tenure,
he introduced bills: to regulate oleomargarine; to help develope waterworks and other utilities
in towns and villages; to improve the election process; to regulate pharmacists, and to
establish a territorial insane asylum.
Little also took a strong interest in the new Oklahoma Historical Society which the Oklahoma Press Association started in 1893.
During 1895, after the Oklahoma Press Association learned the University of Oklahoma
incorporated the Oklahoma Historical Society, the two entities merged and soon after William
Thomas Little became its custodian and curator. He developed the first
archives, increased the number of documents and organized local meetings to collect local
During the next four years, he divided his time between the Historical Society and his home in Perry. He was the first Oklahoman to
raise Tamworth hogs and the first to apply "shelterbelts" to his farm. He was elected VP of
the American Forestry Association, representing Oklahoma. In 1889, he worked as a government
land appraiser. In 1901, was appointed to the position of Postmaster at Perry where he
persuaded the city fathers to plant trees in the local cemetery and convinced local school
officials to start a tree nursery on unclaimed land on the edge of town. In 1902, he helped
organize the Nobel County Farmers Instititute. In 1904, he published Oklahoma Farmer,
a review for farmers and tree growers. Little was recognized by the leading forestry
societies of his time for his unwavering position on planting windbreaks in semi-arid areas
such as those that existed in western Oklahoma. To illustrate his point, he purchased several
thousand seedlings and planted them as windbreaks -- especially on the grounds of the
Perry Courthouse -- and throughout the town before he died.
William Thomas Little died in an insane asylum in Norman, Oklahoma at the age of forty-six
years, the victim of an organic brain disorder. At his death, July 5, 1908, The
Daily Oklahoman, one of the oldest newspapers in existence in Oklahoma today, wrote in
part, "..He was altogether one of the brainiest men that ever lived in Oklahoma."
Will T. married Maude Jensen Heileman, daughter of the U. S. Indian
Agent for the Ponca and other tribes in 1902. They were the
parents of Sarah M. Little, who married Joseph Brandt, later
President of the University of Oklahoma; and Edward
Thomas Little, who became involved with the oil drilling industry in
Oklahoma City. Grandson Joseph T. Brandt, USMC., fought at
Heartbreak Hill in the Korean War and received the Purple Heart.
Source: The Little Family of Monmouth County, New Jersey
Donald C. Little 1951. Donald was a direct descendant of Thomas