GOVERNOR CHESTER HARDY ALDRICH.
Governor Chester Hardy Aldrich was born at Pierpont, Ohio, on the 10th of November, 1862. parents were George W. and Sophrona E. (Hardy) Aldrich. Chester Hardy Aldrich was given excellent training and educational advantages in his youth, and grew up with everything in his favor for making a success in life. After a through preliminary education, he entered the Ohio State University, from which he was graduated with the class of 1888 with the degree of A. B. The degree of L. L. B. was conferred upon him in 1911 by the Nebraska Wesleyan University.
Our subject was married June 4, 1889, to Sylvia E. Stroman of Ulysses, Butler county, Nebraska.
While still a young man Chester Hardy Aldrich left his Ohio home and came west. He settled at David City, Butler county, Nebraska, where he was admitted to the bar in 1891, and began the practice of law. He still makes David City his home. He has varied business interests, and devotes a great deal of attention to stock raising. He has always taken an active interest in all matters that affected the public welfare, and is one of the leaders of thought and action of the state. He was a member of the state senate in 1907, and in 1910 was elected governor for the term beginning January, 1911.
In political affairs Mr. Aldrich is a republican, and in religious affiliations a Methodist. He is also a prominent member of the Masonic fraternity, being a Knight Templar. A man of high character and integrity, he holds the respect and esteem of his fellow men of all parties and creeds.
HON. JAMES N. PAUL.
Hon. James N. Paul, probably better known than any resident of Howard county, Nebraska, and, as his name would indicate, one of the founders of the city of St. Paul, is a gentleman of large means, and a leader in the affairs of his county and state.
In 1901 Mr. Paul was appointed judge of the eleventh judicial district of Nebraska, and is still on the bench, having been elected for a second term without opposition.
Judge Paul is a native of Beaver county, Pennsylvania, born September 23, 1839, and in 1840 the family moved to Meigs county, Ohio. He received his early education there, and at the age of twenty began the study of law in Gallipolis, Ohio. In 1864 he enlisted in Company H, one hundred and fortieth Ohio Volunteer Infantry, saw considerable hard service, and was mustered out of the army at Gallipolis, Ohio, in 1865. He then went to Leavenworth, Kansas, and continued his law studies while working as a civil engineer, remaining there four years, when he came into Nebraska as a civil engineer and surveyor, following this work for eight years. He was admitted to the bar in St. Paul, Nebraska, in 1873. Three years previously he and a brother, N. J. Paul (whose sketch appears in this book) had spent some time in Howard county, laying out the village plat of St. Paul.
In 1873 Judge Paul established the first newspaper in St. Paul, called the "Howard County Advocate," continuing the publication of the organ for about seven years, at which time he gave up newspaper work and turned his entire attention to his law practice, real estate deals and various other interests. He succeeded in building up a large and lucrative practice in the general courts of Nebraska. In 1885 he was elected a member of the state senate and chairman of the judiciary committee, serving one term.
On December 24, 1869, Judge Paul was married to Mary F. Paul of Leavenworth, Kansas, and to them have been born the following child-
ren: Charles Howard, who is a lawyer, is married, and resides in New York city; Herbert J., who with his family lives in St. Paul, he being court reporter for the eleventh judicial district; James Leonard, civil engineer, also living in St. Paul with his family, and Willard S., cashier in the St. Paul State Bank. Mrs. Paul is a lady of charm and rare mental attainments, active in the Federation of Women's Clubs in the state, and the entire family are held in high esteem by associates.
EX-GOVERNOR W. A. POYNTER.
Among the prominent men in public life of Nebraska, none is held in higher esteem by the people of that state than the gentleman above mentioned, now deceased. His faithful discharge of his official duties, his upright character and lovable disposition, have placed him among the most highly esteemed men of his time, and in his demise the people of his locality have lost a faithful and disinterested friend, his party a strong advocate and the church of Christ an elder and workmen above the average.
W. A. Poynter was born in Woodford county, Illinois, on May 29, 1848, and there grew to manhood. He was educated at Eureka college, graduating from that institution with an A. B. degree, and later the degree of A. M. was conferred on him from his alma mater. He was married in October, 1869, to Maria J. McCorkle, and to them were born two children, C. W. M. Poynter, M.D., and Mrs. Josephine Bickford, both now living in Lincoln, Nebraska.
On coming to Nebraska, he soon entered into the work of reform in political matters. He was foremost in the Farmers Alliance and the Anti-Monopoly movement, which finally culminated in the populist party. Of this party he was one of the founders and always a leader. As a populist he was elected governor, and went direct from his farm from the plow handles and dairy to the executive chamber.
Mr. Poynter led an active life, making his home in Illinois up to 1879, at which time he came to Boone county, Nebraska, and settled on a farm in Rozelma (?) precinct, which he owned at the time of his death, which occurred on April 5, 1909, while he was transacting business at the state house.
Mr. Poynter was elected state representative while living on his farm, and later was elected to the senate, and speaker of the senate, filling both offices with dignity and ability. His party was one of reform, and he was one of the fondest, always a trusted leader. In the fall of 1898, he was elected governor of Nebraska, and made his residence in Lincoln from that time on.
For five years prior to his death he was on the University Institute force, and spent the winter lecturing all over the state, gaining the acquaintance of a wide circle of people, and becoming very well known among the leading men in state and national affairs. In this work his evening lecture was very popular and a great inspiration to agriculturalists.
On the morning preceding his death he went to the state house to plead for the daylight saloon bill, not that he favored the saloon at all, but that this much of a reform might be accomplished. After closing his speech, which was full of earnestness and eloquence, he stepped back in line with the others and immediately expired. He was a man of noble character, always fighting for the best in life, and carrying this thought to the last, faithful to the last, and he left many friends among all classes to mourn his demise.
Mr. Poynter was a thorough christian, and had spent his life in active service of the church. At the time of coming to Nebraska, he took a leading part in planting the church in his neighborhood, which still stands, a strong influence for good. All the enemies he left were those who opposed him in his works of righteousness and efforts at reform.
HON. W. L. KIRK.
The above gentleman is the genial editor of the Creighton News, and while not born in Nebraska, has spent practically his entire career within the state, having been brought to Richardson county while an infant in arms. This was before the grasshopper raid struck the state, and he well remembers the time when for two years his father's crops were consumed by the pests. After the family's removal to Antelope county, in 1881, they were often threatened with prairie fires, and occasionally schools were dismissed in order to help fight the flames. Sand storms frequently devastated their crops, as after a three-days' blow there was usually no sign of vegetation, but after a rain which generally followed these storms the green blades were again brought out. During the blizzard of 1888, which is well remembered by every old-timer, Mr. Kirk barely escaped being caught in the store. He had his horse saddled, intending to visit a neighboring school, when, noticing the threatening clouds, he decided to wait a while, and inside of ten minutes the snow blew so fiercely that he was unable to see the house. Mr. Kirk has seen this country in its primitive state, when its land would not be accepted as a gift, and often compares it with the present, when its soil produces as large crops as can be found in any section in the country.
Mr. Kirk is a son of Wm. T. and Mary B. Kirk. who are natives of Mason county, Kentucky. and are now residing in Plainview. His birth occurred on January 30, 1869, in Mason county, Kentucky. he was educated in the country schools of Richardson and Antelope counties, attending the Creighton high school later. While a student there, he worked for his board, and in his spare moments learned to set type in the office of the
Creighton News. After attending school two years, he quit, entering the office of Lucas & Logan, printers and publishers of the Courier, doing chores for enough to keep him in pocket money. He was employed by that firm with an increase of two dollars per week, until his parents removed to Plainview, where he joined them, and secured work with the Plainview Herald, which was purchased later by his father and himself. After running the paper for a time, he sold it and leased the Osmond Herald, selling his interest in the later business in 1892 to its present owner, B. S. Leedom. He then worked as a compositor for some time, and leased the Elgin Advance in March, 1893. He prospered for the first year, then times, being hard and the effects of the panic of that year becoming felt considerably, he abandoned the business and started all over again.
For three years he was editor and manager of the Neligh Yeoman. When that journal changed hands, he served his connection with it, returning to Plainview and entering the employ of N. E. Foster, it's owner. During the latter's incumbency as chief clerk of the legislature, Mr. Kirk had entire management for six months. He was next employed by W. E. Powers on the Pierce Leader until September, 1901, when he returned to the office in which he first learned to set type, leasing the paper of H. L. McCoy. He has run this paper ever since, building up the circulation and improving the office in every way, infusing new life in it, and making it one of the first publications in the county, and, in fact, in northeastern Nebraska.
Mr. Kirk was married at Plainview, April 28, 1892, to Rosa M. Buckingham, and they are the parents of two daughters, Opie and Esther. Politically Mr. Kirk is a staunch republican, who gives forcible expression of his views in his ably conducted journal. He served as a member of the house in the thirty-second session of the Nebraska legislature, being elected from a democratic district, overturning a four hundred majority; served on the insurance, immigration, labor and public printing committees, and was chairman of the house committee on university investigation, looking into the needs and conditions of the state university. A heavy democratic majority did not give a republican much show, but he got one bill through to become a law. He was an active member, and received considerable recognition, although a minority member.
Mr. Kirk has been a member of the school board for the past five years, serving as secretary most of that time. He is a prominent Mason, Past Chancellor Commander of the K. of P., also a leading member of the M. W. A. and Royal Highlanders. Mrs. Kirk holds the office of Past Worthy Matron of the Eastern Star.
GOVERNOR A. C. SHALLENBERGER.
Ex-Governor A. C. Shallenberger has for many years been one of the most prominent residents of Alma, Nebraska, and is widely known through Harlan county and the surrounding country as a successful agriculturalist and stockman. He is president of the Bank of Alma, which he established in 1887, and of which he was cashier for six years, from 1887 to 1893 inclusive, then became the head of the institution. He served for some time as mayor of Alma, and represented this district in congress in 1900. In 1906 he was the democratic candidate for governor of Nebraska, and again in 1908, when he was elected to that office and served one term.
Mr. Shallenberger was born in 1861 at Toulon, Illinois. He came to Nebraska in 1880, settling in Polk county. He was then eighteen years of age, and for some time after locating here was employed as a clerk in a store at Osceola, Nebraska, and also at Stromburg, Nebraska. He has five brothers, two of whom are managers for the International Harvester Company, and three are engaged in the banking business, so it was only natural for him to select this line of work. The Bank of Alma has a capital of $30,000. To illustrate the rapid growth of the Bank of Alma, it is only necessary to say that while seventeen years ago the deposits were only $8,000, they are today over $200,000. Then there were 110 farmers' accounts, and now the bank carries many hundred accounts, the greater portion of them being from farmers, which shows the wonderful progress of this vicinity and the prosperity of the farmers and stockmen.
Since 1890 lands in this section of Nebraska have advanced from two hundred to three hundred per cent. Mr. Shallenberger is the owner of one thousand seven hundred and twenty acres of fine farm land located near Alma, and since 1890 he has raised and fed large numbers of cattle and hogs each year. The farm land about here has become so high that he has gone out of ordinary stock, and breeds only the best, and keeps only thoroughbred shorthorn cattle, preferring these, as they serve the dual purpose of beef and dairy, and the latter pays better on high priced land than beef cattle. At the Nebraska State Fair in 1906, ''Bar None II'' took first prize and sweepstakes, and at the Royal exhibit held at Kansas City he captured second prize for yearling bulls. Mr. Shallenberger captured eleven first prizes in 1907, and in 1908 captured nine first prizes. He has now seventy-five to one hundred thoroughbred shorthorns in his herd, and at his sales held each year, buyers come from all over Nebraska and Kansas, recognizing the fact that they will get nothing but the best of stock. There is probably no man in western Nebraska who has made a closer study of financial and agricultural conditions of the state, and he is recognized as an authority on these subjects.
Mr. Shallenberger was married in 1884 to Miss Eliza Zilg of Spring Green, Wisconsin. They have three children: Martin Shallenberger, who is second lieutenant of the sixteenth United States
infantry; Grace Shallenberger, at the University of Nebraska, and Dorothy Shallenberger, at home.
Among the truly self-made and highly successful pioneers of Nebraska, the name of Obed Cravath deserves a prominent place.
During his career of forty years as a farmer, he can boast of never having had a failure of crops, although passing through pioneer experiences in both this state and Minnesota. He now resides in Fullerton with his family, retired from active labor, and is numbered among Nance county's substantial and worthy citizens, an active man of affairs, and widely known throughout the entire region. We are pleased to present a portrait of Mr. Cravath on another page.
Obed Cravath is a native of Michigan, born in Washtenaw county, April 27, 1835, and is a son of Obed and Hannah Cushman Cravath. He received his education in his home state, and was interested in farming there as a young man. His father died when he was but four years of age, and his mother remained on the home farm until her death, which occurred in 1851. In the summer of 1855 Mr. Cravath went to Minnesota took up a claim in Olmstead county, and after making arrangements for proving up on the land returned to Michigan, where in April of the following year he was married to Charlotte E. Kellan, also born and reared in Michigan. After their marriage, they moved to Mr. Cravath's claim in Minnesota, remaining on the place for five years, then purchased additional land and established a permanent home. In 1878 Mr. Cravath made a trip through the country, taking in different parts of Nebraska, and came through Nance county, which seemed to him to be a very desirable country, and two years later brought his family here, purchasing one hundred and sixty acres in section thirty, township seventeen, range six, which formed their home farm for fifteen years. He added to his original place until he now owns four hundred and five acres. They then located in Fullerton, and have since made their home in the little city. During his career as a farmer, Mr. Cravath has been very successful and is numbered among the substantial and prosperous men of his county.
Mr. and Mrs. Cravath have no family of their own, but have one adopted daughter Inez Marie, who lives with them.
In 1893 Mr. Cravath was elected county clerk on the populist ticket and was also ex officio clerk of the court. While living in Minnesota he was assessor of his township, also ex-officio of the board of supervisors, county commissioner and justice of the peace for six years. As justice of the peace Mr. Cravath performed one marriage ceremony, and as clerk of the court signed one man's death warrant. With the exception of the office of justice of the peace, which he filled three terms, Mr. Cravath was elected and filled the other positions for one term each. He was born in Michigan when it was a territory, and moved to Minnesota before it became a state. During his entire life, he has acted as pall bearer at only one funeral, and once officiated as funeral director.
SAMUEL A. KENNEY.
One of the oldest residents of northeastern Nebraska is Samuel A. Kenney, who is also one of the earliest settlers of Stanton county. He was born in Washington county, Maryland, April 2, 1823, and is the son of Samuel and Margaret Hanna Kenney, the former a native of Scotland and the latter of Washington county. The father died at the age of fifty-six, but the mother lacked only four years of the century mark when she died.
When Samuel A. was only six months old, his father moved to Fairfield county, Ohio, and settled sixteen miles west of where Columbus was later platted for the state capital. At that time, this was the extreme frontier, and the settler was obliged to carry his rifle with him at all times, for the thick woods sheltered panthers, lynx and wild cats, any of them being dangerous to meet when unarmed. Mr. Kenney grew up on the farm here, and when about twenty, went to Zanesville and worked for seven years at the tanner's trade.
In August, 1850, Mr. Kenney married Almina Elizabeth Vermillion at Gratiot, Ohio. She was a native of Virginia. In the fall of that year, Mr. Kenney and his bride pushed still farther westward, becoming pioneers in Coles county, Illinois. At one time he and his wife picked a pailful of wild strawberries on the present site of Mattoon. He lived here for two years and one-half, and with the restlessness of the true pioneer, again moved west to the fore front of civilization, reaching Madison county, Iowa, in June, 1853. He made this place his home for six years, and developed a good farm in the midst of the wilderness. At this time so many big timber rattlesnakes were found that the county offered a bounty, and the old records show that over five thousand and two hundred were killed in one day.
In the summer of 1860, Mr. Kenney and his family returned to Ohio, his wife not having seen her old home and kindred since leaving as a bride ten years before. The family traveled back in the same prairie schooner that had carried them west. They passed through Mattoon, their former home for a few years, the day on which Lincoln was first elected to the presidency. They remained in Ohio through the winter, enjoying a long visit with home folks and old friends until about the time that the war broke out. For weeks they retraced their steps until they reached their Iowa home.
During the long and fierce struggle between
the north and the south, Mr. Kenney lived on his Iowa farm, but in 1869 he sold his lands and again pushed onward to the ever-receding frontier. He had heard of the rich prairies of Nebraska, and made his way direct to the Lowery farm in Stanton county, the owner of which was a relative of one of their Iowa neighbors. They rested here a few days, then pushed on, and in June finally located on a homestead two miles north of where Stanton now stands.
Mr. Kenney homesteaded a quarter section at first, and later purchased an eighty-acre tract adjoining. He at one time owned an additional half section, but as land was a drug on the market, and taxes often were higher than the value of the crops produced, he sold it. Mrs. Kenney died here in 1895 at the age of sixty-three years. Mr. Kenney, however, remained here until 1906, when he retired from active management of the farm.
The first building on this homestead was a three-room dugout, in which the family lived for eight years. The lumber for the door of this primitive dwelling was hauled from Omaha, one hundred miles or so away. In 1877 he built a more comfortable dwelling and barn.
Twelve children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Kenney: Margaret Hanna, whose wedding was one of the first in Stanton county, when she married William H. Brown; Christiana (Mrs. Jos. Pilant); Emma (Mrs. Harry Harris) ; Ella (Mrs. Thos. Shillington); Perry, James, Albert, Anna Belle (Mrs. Amos Prawitz), Katie (Mrs. Adam Warner) and William. Two of the children died. In politics Mr. Kenney is a democrat, and he is also a member of the Methodist church. He is remarkably well preserved for a man nearing ninety, active and clear-minded, and bids fair to round out a century or more. His heart is as young as it ever was, and he takes as much interest in children as when his own were small, and, as for the children, they are firmly persuaded that there is no one, in the whole world, who can tell such wonderful stories as Grandpa Kenney.
The name of John Sauders is familiar to the residents of Pierce county, Nebraska, where he has lived for many years. Locating here in 1881, when this region was practically in its infancy, he has taken a leading part in its development and growth; from its early settlement. Mr. Sauders was born in Montgomery county, Ohio, March 7, 1841, and is the son of John and Ellen (Amsted) Sauders, natives of Pennsylvania and Maryland, respectively. Our subject has one brother, William Sauders, who lives in Sidney, Ohio.
When leaving his native state, our subject went to Cairo, Alexander county, Illinois, where for six or seven years he followed the river between Pittsburg on the Ohio and LaSalle on the Illinois, and from Keokuk to New Orleans on the Mississippi. In 1867 he settled in McLean county, Illinois, and farmed near Randolph for a period of ten years. He then moved to Ringo county, Iowa, where he lived for four years, finally settling in Pierce county in 1881, filing on the two middle eighties of the west half of section five, township twenty-eight, range four. He lived in a dugout for twelve years, then built a good house. He has developed this land into a fine place, with a seven-acre grove of thrifty trees.
Mr. Sauders went through the hardships to which this section was subjected in the early days, but fortunately was one of the few who suffered no loss in the blizzard of 1888. Like other early settlers, his only fuel for eight years was hay and corn.
At the outbreak of the civil war, Mr. Sauders served two months in the state militia, and then enlisted in company E, Eighteenth Illinois infantry, at Cairo, May 28, 1861. He served his country for three years, receiving his discharge at Springfield, Illinois, June 11, 1864. He fought in the battles of Fort Donelson, Shiloh and Vicksburg, besides many smaller engagements and skirmishes. He received a number of slight flesh wounds, but never reported them, fearing discharge. He was in the hospital three times, but reported again for duty as soon as possible after getting again on his feet.
In politics Mr. Sauders is a staunch republican.
HANS C. ENEVOLDSEN.
Hans C. Enevoldsen, for many years a prominent resident of Loup Fork precinct, Howard county, is a prosperous farmer, and commands the respect of a large circle of acquaintances. He is a gentleman of untiring energy, possessed of sterling characteristics, and has prospered in his chosen calling.
Mr. Enevoldsen was born in Denmark, December 10, 1849. He is a son of Enevold and Inger Christiana Petersen, and was the youngest member of their family of five children. Hans grew up in his native country; and was married there to Marie Elsie Andersen in 1872. They followed farming for about ten years after their marriage, then the entire family, consisting of himself, wife and five children, came in an emigrant ship to America. They traveled directly to Nebraska, locating in Howard county, Mr. Enevoldsen purchasing some land on section thirteen, township thirteen, range twelve, which is still used as the home farm.
Since coming here. Mr. Enevoldsen has seen considerable of the early settlers' life. He started in the face of many difficulties, living in a sod shanty for many years, and in spite of hardship and privation has succeeded in putting his farm in first-class shape, having much of the land in a high state of cultivation, and engaging suc-
cessfully in mixed grain and stock raising. He has erected good farm buildings of all kinds, has a handsome residence, and, together with his fine family of eleven children, enjoys the comforts of a modern home and up-to-date farm.
Mr. Enevoldsen's children are named as follows: Andrew, Jens, Martin, Niels, Christina, Inger, Annina, Martinus, Elbena, Christ and Fred. Andrew, Martin, Inger and Annina are married, and have comfortable homes in different parts of the country, while the balance are at home, and following honorable callings.
In the early years, our subject was closely identified with the up building of his locality, helping to establish the schools, and for many years has been a member of the school board in district number twenty-eight.
WILLIAM C. ALEXANDER.
William C. Alexander, familiar to all residents of Howard county, is one of her public-spirited citizens and leading business men, prominent in official circles. He has a pleasant home in St. Paul, and is classed among the well-to-do and successful men of affairs in his section.
Mr. Alexander is a native of Iowa, born in Clinton county, October 21, 1870, and is the eldest in a family of twelve children born to William and Maggie Alexander. When he was an infant of less than one year of age, his parents came to Howard county, and he has the distinction of being one of the very first white children in the county.
He lived at home until he was twenty-three years old, at that time starting out for himself, following farming for three years. He then begun in the pump and windmill business, doing in connection with this line, general repair work. He continued in this business for some time, then became a salesman for the Deering Harvester Company. He has been more than usually successful in this line, as he is an expert in field work in the way of setting up machinery, being a natural mechanic and capable in every way. He was with the Deering Company for five years, then allied himself with the McCormick Company, remaining with them for one year. In 1903 he again went into the pump and windmill business, establishing himself in Elba, where he secured all the work he was able to do. In the same year he was elected sheriff of Howard county, filled the office with credit and was re-elected twice, serving in all for six years his last term expiring Gamier 6, 1910. He has also filled minor county offices to the satisfaction of all, and has gained the confidence of his fellow men by his integrity and sterling worth, counting his friends by the score. Since the expiration of Mr. Alexander 's term as sheriff of Howard county, he has been employed as salesman for the International Harvester Company, his territory extending west and northwest of Grand Island.
September 21, 1905, Mr. Alexander was married to Mary Davis, who departed this life in 1908, her death occurring in St. Paul. Mr. Alexander and his wife, prior to their marriage, settled in St. Paul in 1904.
Mr. Alexander was married the second time to Marie Green of Blue Hill, who comes of an old pioneer family of Nebraska, her father, mother and seven children having settled in Saunders county in 1881. Later they moved to Webster county, where the parents and four children still reside. Mr. and Mrs. Alexander have a pleasant home in St. Paul, and are popular members of society there.
AARON V. MENSING.
Aaron V. Mensing, who is among the old settlers in Valley county, Nebraska, owns a good ranch, which he has improved in splendid shape, and he occupies a foremost position among the well-to-do and progressive farmers and ranchmen of his county. Mr. Mensing is well known and highly esteemed throughout the community for his active public spirit and good fellowship.
Mr. Mensing was born in the town of Edinsburg, Saratoga county, New York, February 7, 1848, and was the eldest of three children in the family of Garret and Henrietta (Van Vleck) Mensing, who had two sons and one daughter. The father was a native of Holland and the mother, of Holland descent, was born in Saratoga county, New York. The Mensing family moved to Calhoun county, Michigan, in 1854, going thence to Fond du Lac county, Wisconsin, in 1860. Remaining in Wisconsin two years, they next moved to Fillmore county, Minnesota, in which state the parents resided until the time of their death.
Aaron Mensing, the subject of this sketch, returned to Michigan in the fall of 1863, and September 1, 1864, enlisted at Jackson in the Seventh Michigan Battery, and served until the close of the war, being mustered out at the same place August 5, 1865. Most of his service was performed around Mobile. Mr. Mensing was only in his sixteenth year at the time of his enlistment. After being mustered out, he returned to Michigan, and remained there until the fall of 1867, teaching school in the winter of 1866 and 1867.
Going to Cheyenne, Wyoming, in 1867, Mr. Mensing was connected with the quartermaster's department at Fort Russell. Here he had frontier experience, freighting from Julesburg, Colorado, the terminus of the railroad, and points in Wyoming, to Montana, as far as Fort C. F. Smith, and continued in this until the Indians burned all the relay ranch stations, a wild life apparently enjoyed by Mr. Mensing. He returned to Michigan in 1868, and during his residence there was married to Miss Harriett E. Doty, to which union one child was born, Edith,
who is the wife of William Kauffman, residing in San Diego, California. After marriage, Mr. Mensing moved to Fillmore county, Minnesota, where his parents lived at the time.
A second marriage occurred at Austin, Moore county, Minnesota, April 17, 1880, the bride being Mrs. Charles E. Davis, whose maiden name was Mary J. Stevens, a native of Rush county, Indiana. Her parents, William B. and Lovina (Mitchell) Stevens, were natives of Kentucky and Ohio, respectively. Of the first marriage, Mrs. Mensing became the mother of two daughters, Nettie E., deceased, and Daisy V., now living in Ord. Mr. and Mrs. Mensing are the parents of one son, Arthur, living on the same section with his parents.
Mr. Mensing moved from Fillmore county, Minnesota, to Valley county, Nebraska, in the spring of 1884, and in April homesteaded near North Loup, where they lived seven years. Mrs. Mensing and three children, two by her first marriage, and their son, Arthur, joined Mr. Mensing in Valley county, Nebraska, in October of 1884. During his four years' incumbency of the sheriff's office, Mr. Mensing lived in Ord, and for three years later. His present place was purchased in 1893, and comprises, with land owned by Arthur eight hundred acres of fine land. Mr. Mensing resides on the northeast quarter of section ten, township twenty, range thirteen, there being three hundred and twenty acres in this farm, which includes the southeast quarter of section three. Mr. Mensing has in past years been an active factor in the upbuildmg of Valley county, and is a prominent man along all lines.
Mr. Mensing's son, Arthur, lives on the adjoining quarter section to the west of his father, and owns the west half of section three, making a solid body of four hundred and eighty acres of land. He was married to Miss Emma Nay, August 30, 1906, and now has two children: Randall and Alice. A sketch of the Nay family is to be found elsewhere in this work.
Mr. and Mrs. Mensing have had a varied experience in Valley county, and enjoy the esteem and respect of many friends. Mr. Mensing served Valley county as sheriff in 1892-1893, 1894-1895. He is a member of his school board, district number thirteen, also treasurer, and has served as justice of the peace of Noble township since 1908. In politics he believes in the principles of the populist party, and affiliates with the Ancient Order of United Workmen.
Fourteen years of Mr. Mensing's early life in Nebraska were spent in a sod house, the usual dwelling of the pioneers of the plains. During the blizzard of January 12, 1888, Mr. Mensing breasted the storm, following after a neighbor's children, fearing they might be lost, having started for home just before the storm broke. Returning, he drove a neighbor's mules to his place and kept them there over night.
Prominent among the old settlers and agriculturists of Madison county, Nebraska, is Joseph Nichols, who, until recent years, resided in section thirty-five, township twenty-one, range one. He is accorded a high place because of his sterling qualities and fine personality. He has always held the best interests at heart for his home state and county, and also for his fellow citizens, and has been all active spirit along all lines pertaining to the welfare of his community.
Mr. Nichols is a native of Vigo county Indiana, his birth occurring in that state, December 27, 1835. He is a son of William and Maria (Grundy) Nichols, who were natives of New England. The mother died when our subject was but a small boy. The father served in the war of 1812, and at the time of his death was a highly respected citizen of Kankakee county, Illinois.
Mr. Nichols grew to manhood in his native state, receiving the usual school advantages, and in 1837 moved to Illinois, and while residing here, enlisted in the army during the civil war joining company H, Seventy-sixth Illinois infantry, first under Captain Dan Plummer, who afterward died at Vicksburg. He also served under Generals Grant and Sherman, and when General Sherman started on his march to the sea, Mr. Nichols' regiment was detached and sent to Mobile. He enlisted August 5, 1862, and participated in the battles of Jackson Cross Roads and Blakely, Alabama, and the siege of Vicksburg, being mustered out July 22, 1865, at Galveston Texas.
In 1882 Mr. Nichols came to Madison county Nebraska, from Kankakee, Illinois. He lived in Madison county until 1885, when he went further west to Cheyenne county, where he took up a homestead and built a sod house. He also took up a tree claim and, proving up on all the land, returned to Madison county, where he has since made his home.
December 25, 1860, Mr. Nichols was united in marriage to Miss Rosealie Moran, a native of Canada. They are the parents of four children, whose names are as follows: Frank, Adele, Reuben and Ross. Mr. Nichols' son resides on the farm at present, Mr. Nichols having retired and become a resident of Madison.
JAMES F. HAGERTY.
James F. Hagerty, now living retired from active life at Sargent, Nebraska, is identified with various interests in the town, and is one of the best known men in the county. He was born in Grundy county, Illinois, April 18, 1860, being the second born of the five children of Patrick and Ann (O'Neill) Hagerty, and the only one of the family to settle in Nebraska. His parents were natives of county Meath, Ireland, and both
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