tember of that year James joined him, his wife coming later, reaching there on Christmas day. They lived on a farm about six miles from Beatrice until March, 1872, then James Cutler, with his wife and two children, removed to Nuckolls county, where they took up a homestead and lived on it for five or six years, then moved into the town of Edgar, three miles north of their farm, and lived there until the spring of 1882, during which time Mr. Cutler leaned the carpenter's trade. In February, 1882, he came to his pre-emption claim five miles southeast of Anselmo, Custer county, where he lived until 1894, the year of severe drouth, when he removed to Sheridan county, Wyoming, and after twelve years spent there, during which he worked in lumber and railroad tie camps, returned to Custer county. In 1904 he purchased the northeast quarter of section thirty-two, township nineteen, range twenty-one, and the following year purchased the southeast quarter of the same section, to which they moved in 1908. He and his wife have a fine farm of three hundred and twenty acres, and a modern residence built in 1909. We give this as the subject of one of the illustrations on another page. Their first residence in Custer county was a dugout, which was later replaced by a "soddy." During the three-day blizzard of April, 1873, Mr. Cutler braved the storm once a day to feed and water his stock. He shot several deer in the pioneer days, but only wounded them; however, he brought down many antelope and has killed his buffalo, the latter event occurring on a fork of the Republican river in the edge of Colorado.
Ten children have been born to Mr. Cutler and wife: Albert L., of Kansas City, has one child; Maggie, wife of L. W. Wilson, of Merna; they toured the continent of Europe in 1910, attending the Passion play at Oberammergau during the summer; Ernest, who is married and lives in Montana, has two children; John, married and living in Montana; Pearl, wife of J. W. Roberts, lives in Merna and has five children; Herbert, married and living in New Helena; Arab, wife of Oscar Wilson, of Edgar, Clay county, has one child; Frank, Dae and Laura, are at home. Dae is a successful teacher in the Custer county schools. The family have a wide circle of friends. Mrs. Cutler has two sisters in Clay county, Nebraska, Maggie, now Mrs. J. B. Johnson, and Mary, wife of Doctor F. D. Anderson. Although Mr. and Mrs. Cutler have been married over forty-three years, they retain their capacity for enjoying life, and seem to have the secret of remaining young and active. They have a keen interest in the progress of events, and have the gratification of knowing their children are well settled in life and doing well. In politics, Mr. Cutler is a republican, and affiliates with the Merna lodge Modern Woodmen of America.
Residence of James H. Cutler.
HENRY J. BILLERBECK.
The career of H. J. Billerbeck, veteran merchant of Osmond, is one that should be an inspiration to the rising generation - a career worthy of earnest emulation. He has been continuously in business since 1855, and in Pierce county since 1884, antedating all other firms in the county. Nearing four score years, his step is as firm and his business judgment as keen as that of most men thirty years his junior. Mr. Billerbeck is proud of the honor of having heard the famous Lincoln and Douglas debate at Freeport, in 1858, and in celebrating the fiftieth anniversary in 1908, he was one of the guests of honor, occupying a chair on the grandstand. He has a vivid recollection of that memorable event, remembering the appearance of the two illustrious speakers and many of their expressions word for word. The men who were present on that occasion are now very few and soon none will remain who can say "I was there."
Mr. Billerbeck is a native of the city of Nieheim, Province of Westphalia, Germany, born on January 11, 1832. He grew to manhood there, the entire family emigrating to America in 1853, embarking March 19, in the sailing vessel,"Herman," and landing at New Orleans the thirtieth of April. They at once took an up-river steamer to St. Louis and another from there to Savanna, Illinois, from which point they crossed the country to Freeport by stage. Here in the fall of that year the father fell ill and died, leaving the family to care for themselves.
The three sons engaged in farm labor, saving their earnings, and after several years had accumulated enough to start a general store, building up a good business, and continuing in partnership up to 1871, when our subject sold out his interest and removed to Carroll, Iowa. There he was engaged in the implement business for thirteen years, then disposed of it and came to Nebraska, locating in Pierce, and engaging in the implement and hardware business. He also opened a branch store at Osmond in 1890, putting his son in charge, and two years later sold the store at Pierce and moved to Osmond, taking personal charge of the business, which had grown to large proportions, and has since developed into the largest business of the kind in Pierce county. In fact, he does as much business as all the other implement houses combined. The store has large stocks of other wares, including harness, which the firm manufactures on a big scale, every piece fashioned under Mr. Billerbeck's own roof. The furniture department is always stocked with a stylish line of modern workmanship, and the vehicle department contains a fine lot of wagons, buggies and carriages, in styles and prices to suit every taste. A splendid assortment of hardware is carried also, and every kind of implement adapted to the operations of a modern farm. The salesrooms cover an area of fifty by one hundred and fifty feet, and ninety feet of the building
proper is two stories high. The value of stock carried is over thirty thousand dollars. He buys by the carload, and frequently has two carloads on the siding at the same time.
On September 5, 1857, Mr. Billerbeck was married at Freeport, Illinois, to Miss Wihelmina Cossman, who is a native of the village of Voerden, Province of Westphalia, three miles from the city of Nieheim, Germany. She in company with two sisters, came to America in 1856.
Mr. and Mrs. Billerbeck have had twelve children, as follows: Mary, Gertrude, Ed, John, William, and Charles, are deceased, while the surviving are Mary, Henry, married Frances Backes and has six children; Frank, Andrew, married Lena Backes; Minnie, Albert, married Annie Prey, and Charles, married Anastasia Neubauer, all occupying honorable positions in life.
In politics Mr. Billerbeck is a democrat, and an active member of the Foresters. With his family, he has always been a strict member of the Catholic church.
LEELON B. KENYON.
Leelon B. Kenyon, a leading citizen of Boelus, Nebraska, formerly proprietor of a flourishing general merchandise establishment at that place, is also president of the Boelus State Bank.
Mr. Kenyon has for the past thirty-six years taken an active interest in the commercial and educational advancement of his locality, and is amply rewarded by the steady growth and thriving condition in which it is now to be found. He owns considerable town property in Boelus, and also a quarter section of good farm land adjoining Boelus on the east, a quarter section in Sherman county, and seventeen hundred and sixty acres in Rock county, Nebraska.
Mr. Kenyon was born in New York state, on October 12, 1852. He grew up on his parent's farm, remaining at home until he was twenty a of age, at which time he went to Michigan spent about one year in farming, then came to Howard county, Nebraska, arriving here in the fall of 1873. He was among the very earliest settlers in the county, picked out a choice location his homestead, also filed on a timber claim, and proved up on both. He succeeded in building a good farm, and lived on the place up to 1889, then moved into Boelus, where he has resided continuously since, with the exception of about one and a half years spent on the Sherman county farm. Several years ago Mr. Kenyon in partnership with a son, purchased and conducted general merchandise store in Boelus, but in 1909 they traded the stock for the Rock county ranch.
For twenty years past Mr. Kenyon has been engaged in the stock business, and during most of at time was known as the heaviest stock buyer in his section of the country.
Mr. Kenyon was married November 29, 1883, to Clara Green, also a native of New York state who came to Nebraska with her parents, Laten and Electa (Simons) Green, in the same year our subject settled here. She has one sister living in Boelus, and another in Antelope county, Nebraska, both father and mother, also two brothers, being dead. Mr. and Mrs. Kenyon have had six children, named as follows: Arthur, Leslie, deceased; Albert, Leelon, junior, Clara and Glenn. Arthur, is married and lives on the ranch in Rock county; Albert, is also married and works the Sherman county farm, while the last three mentioned remain at home.
The family have a pleasant home, and all are popular in their community.
Mr. Kenyon served for five years as treasurer of the Boelus school board and is still a member of that body. He has done much in the way of bettering conditions locally.
In 1905 Mr. Kenyon and Anders, Peter and Niels Jensen, purchased the Boelus State Bank, Mr. Kenyon being elected president, and has continued holding that position up to the present time.
HUBERT A. WEED.
Another of the enterprising and prosperous farmers of Valley county, is the above named gentleman, who owns a fine farm near North Loup. He has been located there only in recent years, but has become known throughout the community as a progressive citizen and energetic farmer.
Mr. Weed is the third in a family of four children born to Theodore and Sarah (Green) Weed. He was born at Milton Junction, Wisconsin, on the second day of May, 1870. His father, a native of New York, who died in 1891, in Valley county, was a civil war veteran, having been a member of Company E, of the Fifth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, which was engaged in many conflicts. The mother, who was a native of Pennsylvania, is still living in North Loup.
When Mr. Weed was eight years of age, the family came to Blaine county and three years later moved to this county, where the father took a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres near North Loup. The son, Hubert, received the greater part of his education in the schools of this state, and as he grew older, engaged in farming.
On the tenth of November, 1891, he married Miss Fanny Wheatcraft, a native of Jasper county, Iowa, who came here with her parents when she was but a small child. She is a daughter of James Wheatcraft, a native of Ohio, while the mother, who was Helen Bishop before her marriage, was born in Vermont; the family came to Nebraska in 1879, sojourning one year in Hall county prior to settling in Valley county, where they made permanent settlement.
In 1901 Mr. Weed purchased eighty acres
adjoining his father's homestead, where he lived for a number of years. Finally, in 1904, he purchased forty acres in section thirty-five, about a miles south of North Loup, and he is now living in a comfortable home at that location. Mr. Weed has made many improvements since purchasing his farm, and is in every way a most successful farmer. Although one of the younger settlers, he remembers many of the hardships and curious experiences of the pioneer days, including the overland trip from Wisconsin, all of which made a deep impression upon his mind at the time. From 1878 to 1891 he enjoyed the pioneer privilege of living in a sod house. Raising nothing in 1894, the dry year, he spent part of the next winter in the western part of the state. He suffered the loss of his barn by fire in the summer of 1910, but with true western grit soon rebuilt. For a number of years he was road overseer of the township. In politics he is a republican.
Two children, Bessie E. and Ervie H., were born to Mr. and Mrs. Weed. The family is prominent in a social way, and worships with the Davis creek congregation of United Brethren. Mr. Weed is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, and with Mrs. Weed, has attained the Degree of Honor.
ERNEST NATHAN, SR.
In compiling a list of the representative farmers of Madison county, Nebraska, a prominent place is accorded the name of Ernest Nathan. For many years past he has been engaged in the pursuit of agriculture in Kalamazoo precinct, where he has aided in every way possible in building up that locality. He is one of the really old settlers who has done his utmost to promote the development of the better interests of his community, and now after years of labor enjoys the knowledge that he has the respect and esteem of all with whom he has had to do.
Mr. Nathan is a native of Prussia, Germany. He was born August 3, 1845, and was the youngest in a family of five children, whose parents were Fred and Wihelmina Nathan, worthy farmers in Prussia. When a young man Ernest was apprenticed to a butcher and thoroughly learned that trade, devoting his time entirely to that while in his native country.
In 1869 he left home, went to Hamburg, and there embarked for the United States, taking passage on the steamship Brushegea, and after a tedious voyage was landed in New York City, a stranger in a strange land. He spent some little time in Wisconsin, and in 1872 started for Nebraska, traveling by wagon team across the country, and arriving in Madison county in the month of May.
He immediately took homestead rights on a quarter section in section twenty-five, township twenty-one, range three, and later took a timber claim, proving up on both tracts in due time, although during the first few years he had a hard struggle to make a living and make any progress, owing to the severe weather conditions, etc. He built two sod houses, living in those up to 1882, when he erected it comfortable frame dwelling. For the first few years Columbus was his nearest trading station, and all supplies had to be hauled from there.
Mr. Nathan was married in July, 1868, in Germany, to Miss Caroline Karskezn, a native of Prussia. Mr. and Mrs. Nathan are the parents of six children, namely: Julius, Ernest, Herman, Otto, Martha and Minnie.
Among the men who were influential in securing the railroad which has recently been constructed through Arnold, Nebraska, John Finch deserves special mention. Mr. Finch is a native of Cedar county, Iowa, born September 6, 1860, third of nine children born to Thomas and Mary Ann Finch, natives of Ohio, who were married in Iowa. The family moved from Iowa to Kansas in 1871, and in the spring of 1873, the father and the eldest son took a trip overland to Lincoln county, Nebraska, taking with them four yoke of oxen and a span of mules, taking up land two miles west of Brady. They had put in a crop in Kansas before starting, returned and harvested it, then with the family came back to the homestead and claim in Lincoln county, being the first white settlers on Pawnee creek. In the fall of 1876 the father, the eldest daughter and eldest son, besides one younger daughter, died of typhoid fever. The mother now lives at Crooks, Idaho; William, lives on the Finch ranch in Custer county; Ephraim, lives in Colfax, Washington; Ira G., and Dennis G., live at Crooks, Idaho; Nancy, Mrs. Walter James, lives at Landore, Idaho; John, lives at Arnold.
Mr. Finch lived in Lincoln county until his father's death. Early in the fall of 1875 the father and two brothers, Ephraim S. and David F., had come to the country eight miles below what is now known as Arnold, and established the first ranch, that far up the South Loup river, and the cattle were moved from the Lincoln county place to this ranch during the same year. Since that time this has been known as the Finch ranch, and was the home of E. S. Finch, one of its original owners, until the time of his death, July 25, 1905. The ranch, which contains two thousand four hundred and forty acres of land, belongs to the widow, Mrs. Sarah A., and a nephew, John Finch. William Finch, brother of the subject of this sketch, lives on it.
Mr. Finch has been a resident of Custer county since 1875, and has had much to do with the growth and development of the locality. Since his fifteenth year he has been active in cattle and ranch interests which were owned by his
father, and well remembers the time when the county was organized. He has continued to make home on the South Loup river, with the exception of one year in Wyoming and one at Cozad. He has diversified business interests in Custer County and since 1886 has been a resident of Arnold, where he engaged in the drug business in 1887, being the pioneer druggist of the town. He owns large farming and ranch land interests and has dealt extensively in real estate.
Mr. Finch was married in Cozad, November 28, 1883, to Miss May Kelley, daughter of William Kelley and wife. She is a native of Booneville, Indiana, her father being county sheriff there at the time of her birth. Two children were born to this union, one of whom survives, Fay G., in business with his father in Arnold. In 1883, Mr. Finch was appointed postmaster of Cozad, where for one year he was engaged in the mercantile business. He was active in securing the extension of the Union Pacific railroad from Callaway to Gandy, taking in the business part of Arnold, which has been such a factor in insuring the prosperity of the town. He is one of the best known business men in central Nebraska, and is prominent in many circles. He has taken thirty-two degrees in Free Masonry and is also an Odd Fellow.
MICHAEL M. HAVEL.
Michael M. Havel, whose name heads this personal history, is a thrifty and energetic resident of Pierce county, where he owns an interest in seven hundred and eighty-three acres of land situated in sections thirty-two, thirty-three and thirty-four township twenty-six, range two, all of which is finely improved, and also contains one of the finest groves in the county.
Mr. Havel was born July 16, 1870, in Bohemia, from whence he came when but a child to America with his father, Mathious Havel. The family sailed from Hamburg on the "Red Star," a sailing vessel, and landed in Baltimore after a voyage of nearly seventeen weeks. They journeyed on to the state of Wisconsin, finding a home in Manitowoc county, where the father found work in a saw mill until 1872.
Mr. Havel comes of a sturdy race, his father's history telling of perseverance and endurance in the early days of Nebraska; our subject being a young lad, did not realize the hardships so greatly as his parents. His father served his native country for twelve years in the wars between Russia and Austria and France and Germany, and was honorably discharged in 1866. He was gone so long, and being reported dead, his wife's parents urged her to marry again, but she insisted her man would return. One day a bearded soldier came to the house whom none knew except the wife; taking the shears she cut off half his beard and disclosed his identity.
After coming to America, he worked in a saw mill one year, then walked from Manitowoc, Wisconsin, to Omaha, where he worked in the construction of the Missouri River railroad bridge for six months and earned enough money to bring his family to Omaha. He then took his family to the homestead in Saunders county in February, 1873, where they experienced very great hardships, going through the grasshopper raids which destroyed all the crops, and also experienced losses from the hailstorm of 1874. In the spring of 1873, he bought three quarter sections of land northeast of the county seat in Pierce county, and also filed on a timber claim. December 5, 1883, he bought a house in Pierce and traded for farm land south of town. In 1897 he retired from active labor and became a resident of Prague, Saunders county, where he is passing his days in comfort and ease. Of four children born to him, three survive: Barbara, Michael and John.
The subject of our sketch was married January 1, 1898, to Miss Mary Faltys, a native of Colfax county, and daughter of Joseph and Christina (Sousek) Faltys. They are natives of Bohemia, emigrating in the early seventies, and lived near Cedar Rapids, Iowa, some two years before moving to Nebraska. They were highly respected early settlers. Mr. and Mrs. Havel are the parents of two fine children: Michael and Anna.
Mr. Havel is affiliated with the Modern Woodmen of America, and is independent in politics.
ALEXANDER S. NICHOLAS.
Should the reader ask for the name of a representative old timer of eastern Nebraska, who has spent many years of his life in the building up of a farm and later a good home in a country where but a few years ago there was a vast wilderness, and who is familiar with the early growth and development of this section, we would mention Alexander S. Nicholas as a typical westerner, a man of sterling character and energetic force of will, who has helped to make the history of this locality.
Alexander S. Nicholas, son of Isaac and Sarah Nicholas, was born in Strongsville, Ohio, January 25, 1839. When eight years of age our subject went with his parents to Lafayette county, Wisconsin, where he grew to manhood, receiving his education in the home schools, and later engaged in farming. Mr. Nicholas was third in a family of seven children, two sisters of whom are living in Wisconsin, the parents being deceased, the father having died in August, 1860, and the mother in August, 1850.
On July 2, 1859, Mr. Nicholas was united in marriage to Miss Salena Burge of Wisconsin, whose parents are deceased. She has one sister residing in Omaha, Nebraska, the other children being deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas have had twelve children, eight of whom are living: Isaac, who is married, has four children, and lives in
Palmer, Nebraska; William A., married, has seven children and also resides in Palmer; Sarah, wife of Ira Griffin, has three children, and lives in Grand Island; Jemima, deceased in 1906, survived by her husband, George Stratton, and nine children; Alfred, married, has one child and resides in Palmer; Mary, wife of James Peck, has eight children, and lives in Merrick county; Samantha, deceased in 1909, is survived by her husband, Wesley Devny, has three children and lives in Palmer; Martha, married to Albert Strong, has three children and resides in Merrick county; Charles, married, has two children and lives in Howard county; Joseph, married, lives in Merrick county, has two children; Clara, deceased in infancy, and Myra, who died in 1885.
In the spring of 1872, Mr. Nicholas, with his wife and seven children came to Howard county, Nebraska, and pre-empted eighty acres of land one and a half miles east of St. Paul, where they lived until the fall of 1873, when they came to Merrick county and homesteaded eighty acres in section eight, township fourteen, range eight, which remained the home place for a few years; and he had also taken a one hundred and sixty acre timber claim near by, on which he lived from 1888 to 1904, when he retired from the farm and moved to Palmer and purchased a good home where he now lives. Mr. Nicholas helped to organize his school district in Howard county, and also was instrumental in organizing the first Sunday school in that county. He has also served on the school board of district number seventy-one, in Merrick county for a number of years.
Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas are among the early settlers of this part of Nebraska, having passed through all the trying experiences incidental to the early Nebraska days, and are widely known and highly esteemed by all. They have been members of the Methodist Episcopal church since before they came west.
C. E. YOCUM.
C. E. Yocum, of Butte, who holds the office of treasurer of Boyd county, has been a resident of Nebraska since 1883, when his parents, James C. and Maria (Newell) Yocum, settled in Boyd county, selecting a location on the point between the Niobrara and Keya Paha rivers, and proving up on a homestead and timber claim. The family came from Wisconsin, where our subject was born on May 23, 1870. He attended the public schools in Charles City, Iowa, as a boy, finishing his education in Nebraska after the family had settled here.
When Mr. Yocum was twenty-one years of age, he filed on a homestead for himself, situated on the north bank of the Keya Paha river, opposite his father's place, and lived on the farm until his election as treasurer of his county, taking possession of the office on January 9, 1910.
During his residence on the farm, Mr. Yocum went through the usual experiences of the pioneer, suffering storms, drouths, etc. The blizzard of January 12, 1888, which left disaster in its wake, will linger long in his memory, bringing to himself and family sorrow, in the finding of the bodies of his mother's sister and two of her grandchildren frozen on the prairies after the storm had passed. Nothing but the delay of the blacksmith in finishing the iron work of a sled Mr. Yocum was having made, saved himself and mother from the same fate. As it was, they were delayed in Stuart until after the storm was over and the intense cold abated, and they could start safely on their long ride across the snowclad plains.
As late as 1885, antelope and deer were to be seen on the prairies, and when the Yocum family first settled here, were quite plentiful. They suffered every discomfort in those days, but all had the fortitude to endure the hardships, firmly believing that better times would come, and in this they were more than right, as in no other part of the country has such a wonderful change taken place in the course of a few years, as in Nebraska.
On December 14, 1899, Mr. Yocum was united in marriage to Miss Augusta Lawton, a native of Illinois, who came to Nebraska with her parents about 1893. Mr. and Mrs. Yocum have three children: Percival, Sevilla and Florence, all bright and interesting young folks, and their home is one of the most pleasant and hospitable to be found in Butte.
Mr. Yocum is a republican.
One of the most prominent of the very early settlers of Stanton county, is the above named gentleman. For forty years he has been a resident of this state, and since 1894 has been living in this county. Through industry and good management, he has built up a valuable estate and is now enjoying the fruits of his years of toil.
Mr. Werkmeister is a native of Shamburg, Germany, where he was born in 1848, the son of William and Sofia Werkmeister. His early years were spent in his native land, where he also received his education.
In 1871, the subscriber left his home in the old country, coming via Bremen to New York. He immediately came west, where better opportunities existed for a young man. He came to Otto, Nebraska, where he rented land and farmed until 1874, when he went to Douglas county. He remained in this locality for quite a long time.
In 1881, Mr. Werkmeister was united in marriage to Miss Dora Stuhr. Thirteen years later, the family moved to Stanton county, which has been their home ever since.
Mr. and Mrs. Werkmeister have nine children, named as follows: Sofia, Emma, Henry, Martha, Dane, Tiny, Dora, Rudolph and William. The
family is prominent socially, and are highly esteemed by all.
Coming to the state at such an early date, Mr. Werkmeister suffered all the usual trials and discouragements which beset the life of the pioneer. For the first six years of his residence in the state, his crops were all taken by the grasshoppers, and it is a matter of wonderment even to him, these days, as to how he got along during those early times. One advantage they had, however, was that when he first came, deer, elk and antelope were plentiful enough to make a considerable addition to their larder. Those times, with their toil and hardships, have all passed, and the old settlers, who did so much towards the development of the agricultural resources of this section of the country, are now so situated as to be able to enjoy the prosperity which is the result of their efforts.
W. H. MUNGER.
Located very pleasantly in section five, township twenty-four, range eight, is to be found the venerable gentleman whose name heads this personal sketch. He has been identified with the history of Antelope county for the past twenty-six years, and has always contributed his full share to the best interests of his home county and state. Mr. Munger, while quiet and unobtrusive in his habits and ways, is forceful in character and honest in purpose, and is widely known as one of the leading and influential early settlers of the county.
Mr. Munger was born in the state of Michigan, August 29, 1840, and is the son of George and Sylvia (Wilcox) Munger, who were natives of New York state. Our subject lived in his native state until twelve years of age, when he went to Lafayette county, Iowa, where he resided thirty-two years.
On September 5, 1861, Mr. Munger enlisted in the civil war, joining Company F, Ninth Iowa Infantry, under General Curtis and Captain Towner; while in service, Mr. Munger was wounded at the battle of Pearidge; he was honorably discharged in April of 1863.
Mr. Munger with his family, he having married, came to Antelope county, Nebraska, by rail, in 1884. After arriving in Antelope county, Mr. Munger took up a homestead claim in section five, township twenty-four, range eight, which farm remains the family home to the present time; on this land our subject built a small shanty and put out three acres of trees; later he built a good substantial house and made numerous improvements, until now he has one of the finest home farms in this section.
Mr. Munger, owing to his many sterling qualities, always has been and still is a popular man in his community. His daughter is now postmistress of Vim, Stanton township, which office she has held for a number of years, having been appointed by President Roosevelt, in the year 1904.
In 1866, Mr. Munger was united in marriage to Mrs. Pauline Wilcox Richards, whose husband was killed while serving his country in the civil war. Mr. and Mrs. Munger have two children, namely: Minnie, wife of E. W. Durham, the parents of three children; and Dora, who resides at home, and is postmistress at the above mentioned office.
NICHOLAS M. MORGAN.
Nicholas M. Morgan is one of the well known citizens of Custer county, where he was one of the early settlers. He is honored as a veteran of the civil war and is prominently identified with the republican party, being active in public affairs. He was born in Calmer, Sweden, August 28, 1836, next to the eldest of eleven children of Samuel and Tina (Nelson) Morgan. He had two sisters and three brothers in America: Frank O. Morgan, of Bradshaw, Nebraska; S. P., of Henry county, Iowa; Mrs. Clara Carlson, of Iowa; Mrs. Martha Larson, of Joliet, Illinois; Charles A., was an early settler of York county, Nebraska, and died in July, 1907.
In August, 1854, Mr. Morgan came to America, spent one year in New York, then came to Minnesota, where he worked at farming. In 1859 he enlisted in Company L, Second United States Artillery of the regular army, for five years. His first service was in Indian warfare in Minnesota and later he was transferred to service in the union army. The more important battles in which he participated were as follows: Chickahominy, first and second Malvern Hill, Fairfax, Courthouse, South Mountain, Antietam, Shepherdstown, Halltown, Warrentown, Chancellorsville, Beverly Ford, Frankstown, (July 9, 1863), Falling Waters, Chester Gap, (July 22, 1863), three battles of Brandy Station in August, and Gettysburg, besides many minor engagements. He received his final discharge at Cedar Point, Virginia, July 15, 1864.
Upon leaving the army Mr. Morgan went to Galesburg, Illinois, and later to Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, where he engaged in farming. He was married at that place December 2, 1869, to Miss Angeline Bailey, born in Tennessee, who died in Burlington, Iowa, in 1874, survived by four children: Josephine May, died at the age of nine years; Amanda Elsie, at home; Hattie C., died young; Henry W. F., in California. In February, 1878, Mr. Morgan came by team and wagon to York county, Nebraska, and for two years carried on farming.
On June 9, 1876, at Burlington, Iowa, Mr. Morgan was united in marriage with Anna C. Johnson, a native of Sweden, who came to America in childhood. November 6, 1879, he filed an entry on a homestead and tree claim of one hundred and sixty acres of land on section
two, township fifteen, range twenty-three, which was the home place many years. He developed it into a splendid stock and grain farm and made a specialty of raising shorthorn cattle. In 1882 he was one of the principal organizers of the republican party in Custer county, the meetings for this purpose being held on the Myers ranch. For three years later, 1884, 1885 and 1886, he served as county supervisor, and for some time was also treasurer of school district number three. He has passed through the most interesting stage of Nebraska's history and has witnessed the wonderful development of his region during the past thirty years, doing his full share to aid in the general progress and advancement. He retired from the farm in July, 1907, and went to live in Callaway, where he has a pleasant home. Upon locating on his farm he lived four years in a dugout before erecting a sod house, and in 1891 he built a fine ten room house on his farm. He owns seven hundred and twenty acres of well equipped grain and stock farm land.
Five children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Morgan: Charles E., a clerk in the war department at Washington; Laura S., wife of L. A. Witthuhn, of Perkins county, Nebraska; Alvin A., and Arthur D., twins, at. home; Lillian E., wife of Fred G. Peyton, of Callaway, has two children.
Among the sons of the Scandinavian Peninsula who have come to America in search of greater opportunities of making comfortable homes than are presented in their own land, and who have become worthy and highly respected citizens, the gentleman named above holds a prominent place. He has been a resident of Cedar county, Nebraska, for more than thirty years and has prospered by faithful industry and integrity and well merits his high standing.
Mr. Anderson is a native of Sweden and was born in 1854, the son of Andrew and Anna Nelson, His childhood was spent in Sweden, and he also obtained the greater part of his education there.
In 1869, Mr. Anderson left his native land for America. He went to England by a sailing vessel, and then took a steamer bound for New York City. He came at once to South Dakota, and for several years worked for others. In 1873 he bought a farm and made considerable improvements upon it in the next few years. In 1877, he came to Cedar county, Nebraska, where he bought the homestead which has been his home ever since that date.
He came to Nebraska when the country was still but sparsely settled, and during the early years of his residence here he experienced many hardships and had many discouraging experiences. In spite of all obstacles, however, be bag prospered and now has a beautiful home and finely equipped farm. Of late years, he has not only engaged in farming occupations, but has also given considerable attention to stock raising, in which he has been very successful.
Mr. Anderson was united in marriage to Miss Ella Hogenson in 1879, and they are the parents of twelve children. They have given them the following names: Annie, now Mrs. Paul Harder, Harry, Frederick, Stella, now Mrs. Charles Dingman, of Sioux City; Hilda, Minnie, Mabel, now Mrs. Paul Pinenon; Lillie, Nels, junior, Bessie, Peter and Sadie. A picture of the family is presented on another page of this work.
Nels Anderson and Family.
Peter Nissen, who resides on section one, township twenty-eight, range four, Pierce county, Nebraska, is one of the leading oldtimers in this section, and has always done his share in the betterment of conditions throughout the community in which he lives.
Mr. Nissen was born January 16, 1852, in the village of Wesby, Province of Schleswig, Germany, and is the son of Mats and Mary Ann (Hollander) Nissen, who are both natives of Schleswig, which until 1864, was a province of Denmark. Both died in Germany.
Our subject followed the occupation of farming in the old country until 1873, when he sailed from Hamburg for New York on a vessel of the Hamburg line, the voyage lasting ten days. After landing in New York, be came to Clinton county, Iowa, and worked as a farm hand for six years. He then rented a tract of wild land in Crawford county, Iowa, which he broke and made ready for cultivation. At the end of the year he sold his lease to the owner of the tract.
In 1881, Mr. Nissen came to Pierce county, Nebraska, and bought a farm of one hundred and sixty acres, his present home, from John Black. He has a well improved farm, on which good buildings have been erected, and is all enterprising farmer. Mr. Nissen first lived for a year in a sod house he found on the farm, then built his present frame house.
Mr. Nissen was married in September, 1881, to Miss Anna Hladik, who was born in Bohemia in 1865, and whose father, Andy Hladik, homesteaded in Pierce county, Nebraska, in 1879.
Mr. and Mrs. Nissen are the parents of eight children, two of whom, Mary and John, died in 1883 and 1909, respectively. Those living are: Andy, Peter, Andrew, Emil, Willie and Etta; two are married, Andy to Miss Paulina Filbeurt, they having two children; and Peter, to Miss Alma Filbeurt.
Mr. Nissen went through many hard experiences in the pioneer days. In 1882 he lost all his hay by a prairie fire, and in the two hailstorms of 1900. lost all his crops. The game storm destroyed a church nearby, carrying it across the road and leaving it a total wreck. Two of
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