John Mason Carpenter was the son of Joseph and Cynthia (Rogers) Carpenter of Alden New York. He was born on December 17,1838. I am unable to locate the Carpenter family in the 1850 Federal Census but I find them in Kansas Territory in the 1860 Census. They are living in New Lancaster. Joseph and Cynthia Carpenter have four children; John (1839), Joseph (1846), Elvira (1859), Clement (1859).
John Mason married Mary Adeline Lewis, the daughter of Sadris and Sophia Lewis, on April 5, 1865 in Miami County, Kansas. In August of 1865, John M and Mary Carpenter are listed in the Kansas State Census a few months after they are married. . John is listed in the Agricultural Census as a Farmer. By the 1870 Census, John and Mary have three children; Arthur (1866), Frank (1868) and Belle (5/12). They also have Mary Lewis and Willie Lewis living with them, Mary Lewis is 79 years old and appears to be the Grandmother of Mary Carpenter and Willie is likely her brother or half brother. He appears to be the son of Sardis M Lewis and his wife Rachel. John’s occupation is now listed as a Physician. They also have John Flake living with them who is a farmer and presumably is running the farm.
By the 1875 Kansas State Census, John and Mary have four children; Artie, Frank, Belle and Carrie who was born in 1873. Mary Lewis who is 89 and Willie Lewis who is 14 years old, still live with the Carpenters. They also have a school teacher living with them whose name is A J Cothing and a 21 year old farm laborer from Germany. The Kansas Census states that John M Carpenter came to Kansas by way of Michigan while Mary Lewis Carpenter, and her Grandmother, Mary came by way of Ohio. Willie Lewis was born in Kansas.
In the 1880 Federal Census, John and Mary have added another son , John who was born in 1879. Willie is now 18 years old and still living with the Carpenter family. Sardis Lewis, John’s father-in-law, Mary’s father, he died in 1879 on Chronic Nephritis and is listed in the 1880 Mortality schedule. The attending physician was his son-in-law, John M. Carpenter.
John M Carpenter dies on August 8, 1882. The following is a Bio which I found on Findagrave for John Mason Carpenter presents a very sad story.
John Mason Carpenter – Born : December 17, 1838 – New York, USA
Death: August 8, 1882 – New Lancaster, Miami County, Kansas, USA
Death of Dr. John M. Carpenter – The entire county was pained at the startling intelligence Wednesday morning of the death of Dr. J. M. Carpenter. The Doctor had been in ill health for some time, brought on by over-work in attempting to attend to the duties devolving upon him from his immense practice, and had sought rest and recreation by travel and sojourn in the East, North and Northwest. He returned about six weeks ago from a long stay in Minnesota and Dakota, where he had been seeking to recuperate his worn and overstrained physique. He appeared much better than when he went away, and his friends and family fondly hoped he would soon be as stout and hearty as ever, but in a week or two he seemed to relapse into his condition before going away, and became sad and melancholy. The day before his death he was missed about the home some time, and the family, becoming uneasy, instituted a search and found him lying in the barn apparently helpless. They had him taken to the house and sent for Drs. Haldeman and Hoover, who found him melancholy and unwilling to talk, but beyond this could find nothing unusual about him. Dr. Haldeman thought he had rather a strange expression about his eyes, but beyond this noted nothing unusual except melancholy and sadness. About 11 o’clock Tuesday night Dr. Carpenter raised up in bed and started to get out. His wife caught hold of him and he turned and slapped her, from which she fainted. He then ran out of the house. Mrs. Carpenter called for help as soon as she became conscious, and friends and neighbors came in. They immediately searched for the Doctor, and after some time found him lying in a field adjacent to the house with his throat cut from ear to ear, and grasping in his hand a razor. The Doctor’s brother-in-law wrenched the razor from his hand, where the grasp was so strong that it was necessary to break the handle off the razor in order to extricate it. He could not speak, and by the time they conveyed him to the house he was dead. Thus died one of the ablest, best and most influential citizens of Miami-co., and of him it may be said: “A truer, trustier, nobler heart – more loving or more loyal, never beat within a human breast.” ”
John Mason is buried in the New Lancaster Cemetery Plot Row P and Lot 96.
Rest in Peace, John Mason Carpenter,
This turned into an interesting research assignment this week and I uncover quite a sad family story which I will continue to research and eventually post on Needles in a Haystack.