"Family Bible records and recall since 1909 includes our Homestead clan. Samuel J. Houston, certainly known by his grandchildren as the father of Alpha, no doubt should have been named in the next collateral information - - -
Glenn A. Anderson as source per Ruth Mildred Houston: " 'Mills Randolf Houston' [actually Sam J. ] "began 1910 to prove a claim 4 mi. SW of Homestead, FL then 1919 moved to Wichita" -- and the family's Furniture & Lumber & Hardware businesses.
Mark Houston in Nov. 2000 forwarded from the Witchita Beacon of Dec. 15, 1939 --
Mr. Houston was born in Galva, Illinois, Dec. 1st, 1865, and drove to Kansas with a horse drawn two wheel cart when he was but 16 years old. ... "he returned to Jewell County, Kansas, and established a farm. Mr. Houston had left a part of his heart in Illinois, however, and in 1887 he returned to that state and claimed his bride, the former Miss Dora Ann Neaves, whom he married December 28 of that year. Mr. and Mrs. Houston celebrated their Golden Wddding Anniversary two years ago this month. ... and they established their home on the Jewell County farm. Recurring droughts plagued the youthful farmer and he decided to return to the lumber business. He went to work for his brother, A. C. Houston, who owned several lumber yards in Kansas, starting at Neodosha, Kansas. ... he went to (work) at Wynnwood, where he stayed until 1902, at which time he returned to Wichita.
Shortly thereafter he established the Houston-Doughty Lumber Company at Wichita ... and soon set up branches throughout the state of Kansas."
This same gentleman says Dora died in 1890, having birthed only son John. He further states Sam married a second wife in 1894 and lists an entirely different set of children for him but in view of the following census records, that obviously is not correct.
Residences & events:
If Samuel returned to IL from KS to get married, he must have stayed at least a year until daughter Elizabeth was born there in 1888 before going back west. The rest of the children were born in KS.
6/6/1900 Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory. By census time the family had moved and the household included Sam J, 34, a lumberman, married 12 years to Dora A who had borne 4 children, all living with them: Elizabeth, 11, John M, 9, Laura A, 8, and Helen, 5.
4/19/1910 Wichita, Sedgewick Co, KS. That year the census listed Samuel J, 44, married 22 years to Dora N, 39, who had birthed 6 children but only 5 still survived. Children in the household at that time were all girls: Laura, 18, Helen, 15, Josephine, 7, and Pauline, 2.
1/12/1920 Same place. At census time Samuel J was a retail lumber merchandiser. He was 54. Wife Dora N was 50 and daughter Josephine E, 17, was still at home.
4/7/1930 Still there. The census taker recorded Sam J at 64, a wholesale merchant of lumber, with a huge amount of property for the day valued at $20,000. Dora N was 60, married at age 18, Samue married at 22. Living with them was divorced daughter, Helen, 36, who apparently she had resumed her maiden name.