46 – Teply Lifestyle – Change – 1917

We’ve been talking about Teply lifestyle from 1890 to 1917, what I called the generation of Frank and Anna Teply.

They certainly lived many years thereafter, but these are the years from their early 20s to their 50s.

1890 – 1917

Of course, there were many changes during this time span.

In 1891, Frank drove cattle by horseback to Omaha. By 1910, he was shipping cars of cattle by rail to St. Joe.

The Hanover Democrat – Jun 19, 1914

Homes were getting outfitted with electricity and plumbing.

The Hanover Herald – May 31, 1912

Telephones would become commonplace.

The Hanover Herald – April 6, 1917

Automobiles were replacing horse and buggy as the everyday means of transport. And some farmers were replacing their draft team with tractors.

A heavier-than-air craft could fly! Manned flight went from balloons to airplanes.

So their were lots of changes, many of them slow to make their way to Washington County, Kansas.

Even as the Teplys adapted to these changes, they could still “Sunday” and fish and grow corn without much thought of national or world happenings.

But that would change, beginning in 1917.


In 1890, the American military had fought the Battle of Wounded Knee against native Americans. By 1917 entry into World War I was imminent.

A United States that had remained isolated from the world economically and politically was to begin a transformation into a world power. A mostly rural agricultural and small town society would start to be exposed to industrialization on a large scale.

People who had never ventured further than surrounding counties would travel to other states and even other countries.

It was the early days of globalization for the country.

Ben Teply in WWI

The next series of posts will follow Ben Teply as he experiences the military machine and the world. It’s really interesting, because we can see where he was, sometimes week by week and day by day.

But his story gets overwhelmed by the events around him. He’s an unwitting actor in a much bigger story. So we’ll watch as the war grabs him by the collar and throws him into the production line and spits him out at the end.

Read on. I think you’ll be as awestruck as I am.


  • All news articles are from The Hanover Democrat, The Hanover Herald, The Marysville Advocate, Washington Register. All are available on Newpapers.com and are free for Kansas residents – Kansas State Historical Society – https://www.kshs.org/ancestry/drivers/dlverify
  • All old photos are from Omar Finley Hawkins Collection of Marshall and Washington County Photographs – Kansas State Historical Society – https://www.kansasmemory.org/
  • Clip art and photos – WikiCommons

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