John Hamilton WEMPLE

Male 1836 - 1894  (57 years)


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  • Name John Hamilton WEMPLE 
    Born 17 Sep 1836  Fonda, NY Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 29 Apr 1894  Jacksonville, NC Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Lot 107, Section 2nd A.E. South 1/2, Elmwood Cemetery, Norfolk, VA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I2176  Wemple Family Ancestry
    Last Modified 13 Dec 2017 

    Father Peter Douw WEMPLE,   b. 25 Mar 1807, Fonda, NY Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Mar 1875, Troy, Walworth County, WI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 67 years) 
    Mother Eliza DAVIS,   b. 16 Dec 1814, NY Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 11 Apr 1858  (Age 43 years) 
    Married 19 Mar 1833 
    Family ID F604  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Sarah Elizabeth CHAPMAN,   b. Abt 1840,   d. Aft 1895, probably Whittier, CA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 56 years) 
    Married 27 May 1858  Geneva, WI Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. Howard Hamilton WEMPLE,   b. 29 May 1859,   d. Nov 1859  (Age 0 years)
     2. Homer Ward WEMPLE,   b. 04 Jan 1860,   d. 05 Jul 1875  (Age 15 years)
     3. Otis Duane WEMPLE,   b. 01 Jan 1864,   d. Bef 1959  (Age < 94 years)
    Last Modified 13 Dec 2017 
    Family ID F864  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Cora CANNON,   b. 15 Apr 1851, Elkhorn, WI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 07 Jan 1918, Portsmouth, VA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 66 years) 
    Married 29 Sep 1874  Lincoln, NE by the Reverand S.R. Dimmock Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. Gail Hamilton WEMPLE,   b. 05 Jul 1875,   d. 10 May 1894, Portsmith, VA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 18 years)
     2. Howard Cliff WEMPLE,   b. 19 Sep 1877, Norfolk, VA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 06 Feb 1924, Denver, CO Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 46 years)
     3. Lois Evalyn WEMPLE,   b. 02 Nov 1879, Norfolk, VA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Jul 1959, Hudson, OH Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years)
     4. Homer Buell WEMPLE,   b. 12 Jan 1882,   d. 30 Aug 1919, Portsmouth, VA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 37 years)
     5. Wallace Waldon WEMPLE,   b. 13 Mar 1884,   d. 27 Jul 1906, Portsmouth, VA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 22 years)
     6. Guy Launcelot WEMPLE,   b. 02 May 1887, Portsmouth, VA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 31 Dec 1950, Portsmouth, VA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 63 years)
     7. Alma Raye WEMPLE,   b. 27 Dec 1892, Portsmouth, VA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 05 Aug 1948  (Age 55 years)
    Last Modified 13 Dec 2017 
    Family ID F865  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • He lived in many states and at the time of his death, which occurred April 29, 1894 in Saint Augustine, Florida, he was was a resident of Jacksonville, NC. WBW

      Sara Elizabeth Chapman divorced John in Wichita, Kansas and she was living in Whittier, California in 1895. John married his second wife, Cora Cannon, in 1874 in Lincoln, Nebraska.

      He enlisted in the Union Army on September 10, 1861 at Rock County, Wisconsin as a Private. He joined Captain Norcross' Company, 13 Regt., Wisconsin Infantry, which subsequently became Company K, 13 Regt. He was promoted to Lieutenant on October 31, 1861 into the same company. He was promoted to Captain on November 21, 1864. He resigned his commission on January 17, 1865 at Huntsville, Alabama and honorably discharged on the same date.

      Portrait & Biographical Album of Sedgwick County, Kansas, 1888, relates that early in life he cast his lot with the cattlemen of Kansas, and was the hero in an article published in 1871, under the heading Desperado Shot Down. Having had some cattle stolen he trailed the thieves to a camp four miles south of Fort Dodge, where he confronted the leader, a Curley Walker, who was a well known gambler and desperado, and killed him in a gunfight over a dispute as to the ownership of the stolen cattle. GJW

      The story in full as quoted from the Portrait & Biographical Album of Sedgwick County, Kansas, 1888 follows:
      Captain Wemple early in life he cast his lot with the cattlemen of Kansas, and was a hero of an article published in 1871 under the head of Desperado Shot Down.

      Captain Wemple, having had some cattle stolen mounted his horse, and with his repeating rifle, which he knew how to handle, struck the trail of the thieves, and followed it until he reached the camp, which was situated about four miles south of Fort Dodge, which is now known as Dodge City.

      Riding into camp, he inquired as to the claimant of the cattle marked with a certain brand, and learned one Curley Walker, well known and feared gambler and desperado, claimed the stock. Walker at the time was in a gambling house in the town, and Captain Wemple sent him word to come down and explain. The Captain was admonished that Walker was a dangerous man, and was advised not to send for him. He, however, dispatched a second messenger, telling Walker to come like a man and keep his hands off his guns.

      When the messenger found Curley he was playing poker, and had his guns hung on the wall behind his chair. Upon receiving word that Captain Wemple had sent him this message, the desperado swore that no man should dare to question him, and he would meet him at once. Mounting his horse, he rode furiously to the camp. and advancing within a few feet of the Captain, drew is horse back on his haunches, and dismounted him, inquired of Captain Wemple what in hell he wanted.

      The latter was sitting on a wagon-tongue with his rifle across his knees. He charged Walker with having stolen his cattle, and the latter reached for his gun which was stored conveniently in his belt, and fired. He missed his mark, and the Captain returned the fire, the ball killing the horse. When the animal fell Walker got behind its body and Wemple behind the front wheels of the wagon, when a regular fusillade began, fifteen shots being exchanged. Of these the desperado fired seven, which took effect in the spokes of the wagon-wheel in front of the Captain, and at the seventh shot fired by the later, the desperado fell, pierced in the heart.

      Although knowing he had received his death-wound, he made one final effort to dispatch his enemy, and making his way around the body of the horse was stepping across the wagon-tongue when his feet caught under it and he fell.

      Captain Wemple, believing that his foe was only trying to deceive him, raised his gun once more and shot his adversary. This accomplished, he rode up to Fort Dodge and called out of the gambling-den the men who had bought the cattle, and required them to go and divide them up and pay for some eight or ten head they had slaughtered, and drove the rest home, and then gave himself up to the commanding officer. He was told no one had any desire to arrest or detain him for ridding the country of one of the most dangerous men in the West, and accordingly, rode unprotected to the nearest railroad station at Fort Hayes.

      He had ridden his horse fast and his horse was covered with foam. He handed the reins to a groom and repaired to a 'tavern' as it was called in those days. Within a short time the streets were filled with cowboys and others clamoring to get a sight at the man who had dared to tackle the notorious Curley Walker and kill him. Captain Wemple accordingly went out, and being hoisted on the shoulders of some of the mob, was carried up and down the streets amid shouting and firing of guns. He is still living and operating a large lumber-yard in Norfolk, Virginia.

      The above account can be found on page 884 of Chapman Brothers, PORTRAIT AND BIOGRAPHICAL ALBUM OF SEDGWICK COUNTY, KANSAS (Chicago: 1888) under the heading M.D. Wemple, son of Peter and Eliza (Davis) Wemple.

      The following is from an unpublished manuscript sent to the compiler on September 28, 2000 by Michael Lee Wemple of Bay City, MI. and written by William Barent Wemple, compiler of the first part if this genealogy from 1885-1913.

      He was born September 17, 1836; married Sarah Elizabeth Chapman, in Geneva, WI, May 27, 1858, she separated from him and is now an attendant in the Reform School, in Whittier, CA; he married, second, in Lincoln, NE, September 29, 1874, Cora Cannon, who survives him and lives in Portsmouth, VA; he was of a roving disposition and has resided in many states, some of his adventures, if told, would equal much of the fiction written of the wild west; at the time of his death he was engaged in the lumber business in Jacksonville, NC; he died in St. Augustine, FL, April 29, 1894.


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