Biography of George T. Chapman

George T. Chapman is a native of Jefferson county, Iowa, where he was born on October 12, 1864, and is the son of Benjamin F. and Mary E. (Cooley) Chapman, the former of the same nativity as himself and the latter born in Indiana. The father was a farmer in his native state, but believing in the possibilities of the farther west, in 1868, he brought his family to Colorado and settled them near Canon City. For a number of years thereafter he was occupied in freighting out of that city to Fairplay and other points, working hard at his business but making good profits from his labor. He died at Canon City in 1881, and three years later the mother moved with her children to Mesa county, where in time she became the wife of James L. Duckett, a sketch of whom will be found on another page of this work. His educational advantages were few, however, as he was obliged to go to work for himself at an early age and continue to make his own living from that time on. When he was but fifteen he owned a team and freighted between Canon City and Leadville, the intervening country then being wild and settled and his business being almost every hour fraught with danger and excitement. At the age of seventeen he sold his outfit and found employment on a ranch in Wet Mountain valley; and two years later he rented land in that valley which he farmed on his own account until 1884. At that time he moved to Mesa county with his mother and younger brother, and soon afterward he rented land near his present home and engaged in farming, continuing his operations in this way for a number of years. In 1892 he bought twenty acres of the land on which he now lives, subsequently adding by another purchase the other ten. To the improvement of his farm he has sedulously devoted his energies, and it is now one of the choice farms of the neighborhood and is enriched with a comfortable cottage dwelling and other necessary buildings. Mr. Chapman was married on November 28, 1888, to Miss Martha A. Smith, who was born in Marion county, Illinois, on April 12, 1869, and is the daughter of Robert and Anna (Ferguson) Smith, the former a Kentuckian by birth and the latter a native of Illinois. The mother died when Mrs. Chapman was about seven years old, and in 1880 the father came to Colorado and became a farmer in Wet Mountain valley. Two years later Mrs. Chapman joined him there, and she has been a resident of this state ever since. He died at Pueblo in 1898. Mr. and Mrs. Chapman have two children, Elsie and Roy Manson. Mr. Chapman is a Prohibitionist in politics and he and his wife are charter members of the Methodist Episcopal church at Bethel, which they helped to organize and of which he was one of the first trustees. He is still serving the church as a trustee and is one of its most zealous and useful members.

Source: Bowen, A. W. Progressive Men of Western Colorado. Chicago: A. W. Bowen & Co., Publishers. 1905.

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