This sturdy veteran who is approaching the seventy-ninth year of his age, possesses unusual energy for one of his years and is affectionately' regarded as one of the old landmarks of Rock Creek Township, Jefferson County, and one who has assisted largely in its growth and development. He was born in Eastern Maryland Feb. 22, 1811, and in 1813 was taken by his parents, John and Dorcas (Morris) Ayers to Brook County, that State. About two years later they made another removal to the vicinity of Wheeling, W. Va., and in 1819 they emigrated to Adams County, Ohio. In the Buckeye State, John Ayers farmed on rented land many years. Both he and his wife were born in Maryland. The former died in Ohio in 1832, and the latter followed her husband two years later, in 1834. Both were consistent members of the Methodist Episcopal Church and died in that faith. Isaac M. Ayres was the fourth in their family of nine children. His maternal grandmother, Hannah Morris, was born in Virginia where she spent her entire life, dying at the advanced age of eighty years.

The subject of this sketch was married in Adams County, Ohio, Dec. 31, 1835, to Miss Hannah, daughter of John Hamlin, a native of that State.

Mr. Ayres farmed in Adams County until the spring of 1854 and then removing to Russellville worked at carpentering until the spring of 1857, when he decided to seek his fortunes west of the Mississippi. He made his way to Cincinnati by wagon and thence by a river boat to St. Louis, Mo. From there they traveled overland to Springfield. Mo., where they sojourned until the following October. Then getting ready once more his prairie schooner Mr. Ayers, with his wife and seven children and his household goods made his way to Kansas and spent the first year thereafter one mile north of the present site of Ozawkie. In the spring of 1859 he removed to the land which he now owns and occupies. This comprises 126 acres and when coming into the possession of Mr. Ayers there was upon it only a little log cabin. He had one neighbor about three-quarters of a mile south and another one and one-half miles west. The three families constituted the population of that neighborhood. The nearest markets were at Topeka and Valley Falls and sometimes the settlers hauled grain and hay to Leavenworth. The only piece of timber on the farm at that time, aside from what was used in the construction of the cabin, was a hickory rail fastened to one end of the cabin upon which Mr. Ayers hung his harness.

Notwithstanding the cheerless outlook Mr. Ayers began the improvement of his land, meeting with success in his labors. About 1862 he planted an orchard of apple and peach trees, having about fifty of the first mentioned and 330 of the latter. The farm is now all enclosed with good fencing and mostly under cultivation. In the meantime, in 1869, Mr. Ayers purchased lots and built in Topeka, taking up his residence there for three years. In the spring of 1872 he returned to his farm but in 1882 removed to North Topeka and engaged in the coal business, also buying property in Topeka.

Mr. Ayers when a youth of seventeen years connected himself with the Methodist Episcopal Church and for several years in Ohio officiated as Class-Leader. Upon his first removal to Topeka he joined the United Brethren Church, and also officiated there as Class-Leader, during the entire time of his residence. Upon going to North Topeka he resumed relations with the Methodist Episcopal Church of which his wife is also a member. She departed this life June 26, 1885, leaving six surviving children, viz: Alson T., James W., Sarilda, who was first married to a Mr. Pierce, by whom she became the mother of six children and who is now the wife of Louis Ankeny; Sarah, (Mrs. George Ready); Eliza, who was first married to Albert Deaver, and who then married James Mott; Armantha; and Mrs. Francis Mott. Two children died in infancy unnamed. Francis M. died when a promising youth of seventeen years, and Jenevery died at the age of fourteen.

On the 1st of September, 1887, Mr. Ayers contracted a second matrimonial alliance with Mrs. Amelia E. (Fisk) Bartlett. This lady was born in Connecticut, where she was reared and married to Charles N. Bartlett, a native of the same State. They came to Kansas in April, 1877, locating at Salina; later they removed to Clay County, then to Junction City and finally to Topeka. Of their union fourteen children were born, six of whom, all sons, died in infancy unnamed. The others are named respectively: Minnie M., Ruth A., Edith A., Susan F., Frederick H., Mary J., Willie M., and James Arthur. Mr. Bartlett died in Topeka Oct. 10, 1881. He was a member of the Baptist Church, with which he became identified in his native State.

The parents of Mrs. Ayers were Ira and Anna (Lillabridge) Fisk, both natives of Connecticut, where they spent their entire lives. Mr. Fisk died in February, 1877, at the age of sixty-nine years. Mrs. Fisk survived her husband almost five years, dying Dec. 6, 1881, at the age of seventy-four; she was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The maternal grandparents were Rufus and Irene (Scripture) Fisk, natives of Connecticut The Fisk family is of Irish origin, and was founded in America by three brothers who came from Ireland. The father of Mrs. Ayers was a second cousin of the father of Jim Fisk, who was killed in New York City. Mr. and Mrs. Ayers have an adopted son, Charles Bartlett, whom they have adopted by law. He is now (1890) three years old.

Mr. Ayers during the season of 1889 ploughed and cultivated forty acres of corn, besides doing other work on the farm. His coal business in Topeka is managed principally by his stepdaughter, Minnie M. \

Portrait and Biographical Album of Jackson, Jefferson and Pottawatomie Counties, Kansas; Chapman Bros., Chicago 1890