Belleville (KS) Telescope - 29 Apr 1915
PIONEER SETTLER AND OLD SOLDIER DIES
O.A.A.Gardner passed away at 8:45 o'clock Tuesday evening, April 27, 1915 at the home of his daughter Mrs. Henry Skeels east of town, at the age of 81 years, 8 months and 27 days. He had been confined to his bed since the early part of January and has been practically helpless all of that time. All of his children were present with the exception of one son Ernest. The funeral will be held on Thursday morning at 9:30 o'clock a the Methodist church. The pastor, Rev. J.O. Borton will have charge of the services and burial will be made in the Washington cemetery at three o'clock.
Orin Augustus Adolphus Gardner was born in Meigs county, Ohio on September 1, 1833 and when quite young he moved with his parents to Davenport, Iowa, where he remained until the breaking out of the War of Rebellion, when he enlisted in Co. A. 11th Iowa Inft., and remained in the service until the end of hostilities. While carried on the rolls of his company until mustered out, in June 1865, a greater portion of his duties were on detached service in the telegraph corps and as provost marshal in Mexico, Mo., where on July 9, 1963 he was married to Miss Louisa Elizabeth West, and to this union three children were born, two of whom are still living. While in the telegraph service at Mexico he received the telegram from President Lincoln to Major U.S. Grant which notified him of his promotion to General. Mr. Gardner personally delivered the message to Grant and was the first person to address him as General.
At the close of the war he continued in the telegraph service as agent for the old North Missouri railroad at Columbia, Mo. In 1872 he came to Republic county, Kansas and homesteaded in Washington township.
In 1876 he was married to Miss Emma Beauchamp of Liberty township, to this union five children were born, four of whom still live. This companion passed away in September 1888, and in March 1900 he was married for a third time, to Mrs. Maria Bailey, who died about two years later.
In his early youth he was converted and united with the Methodist Episcopal church and throughout all these years he lived a consistent Christian life.
In the formative period of 40 to 50 years ago when clear heads and stout hearts were required to lay the foundation for the future development of Republic county, Mr. Gardner found himself often called upon for counsel and action, and it is said that while he never sought political preferment he exerted much influence upon the early political affairs of the community.
From his arrival in the county he became an active advocate of timber culture and fruit and flower growing and soon established a nursery on his farm for the purpose of supplying this demand. He was a pioneer and actively instrumental in the organization of the Republic county Horticultural Society, was its first president and afterward for a number of years as secretary he succeeded in making the Association an institution of value.
Mr. Gardner also brought to Kansas with him considerable experience as a newspaper man, and devoted more or less time in preparing valuable matter for the press. At one time he was connected in an editorial capacity with the Telescope, while the paper was under the management of J.C. Humphrey, and even in his declining years always expressed a warm interest in the newspapers.
Being a veteran of the war Mr. Gardner always took an active interest in the affairs of the G.A.R. and was a leading figure in Post activities until age began to lay heavily upon him, compelling him to refrain from taking active part in anything of this nature.
For the past twenty years or so, he has been a familiar figure on the streets of Belleville where he lived since feeble health caused him retirement from the farm. For several years he served in the capacity of police judge with credit to himself and the community, and from the early days has held the respect and confidence of all with whom he came in contact.
Two brothers, C.O. Gardner, of this county and George Gardner of New Smyrna, Florida and six children, J.A. of Kenesaw, Nebr., Ernest A. of Jupiter, California, Lester W. of Sioux City, Iowa and Roy of Republic City, Kansas, and Mrs. Eva Skeels and Miss Rose Gardner of Belleville, survive him.
He was always a loving and indulgent father, husband and brother, and a friend who never failed.
His muster list with Iowa AG lists him as a Private, musician, Company A, 11th Iowa Volunteer Infantry.
His pension registration dated 1889 with Kansas has him as Private Co A.
So Iowa never considered him a Captain it would appear. Grant in his memoirs speaks of how disorganized troops at Mexico were when he arrived. So did a musician private from Iowa, just grasp an opportunity? He was a carpenter by trade, not a lawyer. Given his germanic sounding name and actions I suspect he leaned radical republican.