Delia Babcock, a native of Cataraugus county, New York. She had been for some years prior to her marriage, a teacher in the Wisconsin schools.
Mr. Chase is a civil war veteran, having enlisted in Company G, Thirty-seventh Wisconsin infantry as third sergeant, and serving until the close of the war. He was a participant in several severe engagements, besides many minor skirmishes. At the time when the mine was blown up inside the fortifications of Petersburg, Mr. Chase was wounded. He was in the hospital about four months, but returned and was with his company all through the siege of Petersburg. He was also in the battle at Fort Steadman on the twenty-fifth of March, 1865, and just a few months before the close of the war, he was made commissary sergeant.
After the war, Mr. Chase returned to Wisconsin, but shortly afterwards went to Minnesota. He remained there only about six months, and then sought the milder climate of Missouri where he farmed for thirteen years in Linn county. In the fall of 1879, Mr. Chase, with his wife and daughter, and his father-in-law, Mr. George C. Babcock, came to Valley county and purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land in section twenty-six, township eighteen, range thirteen, which was the home of the family for about twenty years. In 1899, he retired from active work and moved to North Loup, where he is still living in the comfortable home he had built. Their first dwelling was a cedar log house built for Elder Babcock. This Mr. Chase purchased and removed it to his own premises.
Mr. Chase has fulfilled all the duties of a good citizen and is at present serving the people as township treasurer. For more than twenty years he has been a member of the school board in his district, and has also served as county commissioner and county supervisor, for a considerable number of years. He is one of the earliest settlers of the county and has passed through much of its varied vicissitudes. When he purchased his first Nebraska land in 1878, he paid three dollars per acre; the same land is now valued at one hundred dollars. He is a successful man of affairs and is interested in all pertaining to the welfare of his state and county. In politics he is a republican and a member of the North Loup Post, Grand Army of the Republic.
Mr. and Mrs. Chase have one daughter, Nellie, now Mrs. E. W. Black, who also resides in North Loup. The family have been for many years members of the Seventh Day Baptist church.
William Machmuller, who resides on section eleven, township twenty-three, range one, in Madison county, Nebraska, is one of the leading old-timers in this section who has always done his full share in the betterment of conditions throughout the community in which he lives.
Mr. Machmuller is a native of Germany, his birth occurring on a farm ten miles east of Berlin, April 26, 1848; he is a son of Martin and Sofia Machmuller, both of whom were natives of Germany. When our subject was but a small boy, the family left their native country for America, sailing from Hamburg, Germany, to New York, on a sailboat, and were twelve weeks on the sea. Immediately upon arriving in the new world, they proceeded westward, going to the state of Wisconsin, living there thirteen years.
In 1866, our subject's father and family started for the far west, as Nebraska was known in those days; they had two ox teams and one horse team, and were one family of a colony that comprised forty-eight families bound for the west to take advantage of the homestead act that had been passed in 1862. The trip was quite an eventful one, and lasted seven weeks; the colonists had to stop and build a bridge at Humboldt before they could cross the river, which caused a delay in their progress. After arriving at their destination, our subject's father took up a homestead east of Norfolk.
In 1869 Mr. Machmuller, our subject, took up a homestead in section eleven, township twenty-three, range one, which still remains his residing place. He first built a log house and lived in this about two years.
In the first years of residence on the western frontier, deer and antelope were plentiful, and herds of them could frequently be seen. Omaha and Columbus were the nearest market places then, both places being many miles away and the journey to and fro consuming many days. Many hardships and discouragements beset the family in pioneer days, but they passed through this trying period bravely, and those times have now passed to history. Mr. Machmuller lost considerable stock in the blizzard of January 12, 1888.
Mr. Machmuller was united in marriage January 28, 1875, to Miss May Bernhart, and Mr. and Mrs. Machmuller are the parents of six children. whose names are as follows: Emma, Charles, Albert, Frank, Lizzie, and Tilda. They are a fine family, highly esteemed in their community, and have a host of good friends and neighbors. They are members of the German Lutheran church, and Mr. Machmuller is a democrat.
JOHN D. KNIGHT.
The Knights are among the older families of Custer county and have been prominently identified with the best interests of their part of the state. John D. Knight is a native of the state, born in Florence, Douglas county, January 13, 1863, third child and eldest son of John G. and Lovinia (Straight) Knight, and their first child born in Nebraska. John Gardner Knight, the father, was born in North Brookfield, Massa-
chusetts, July 5, 1828, and grew to manhood's estate in his native state. He was married in Vermont on May 1, 1851, to Lovinia Straight, and they began housekeeping in North Brookfield. He was a shoemaker by trade and went to Wisconsin in the summer of 1856, later in the same year going on to Florence, Nebraska, where for years he carried on farming in the large fields adjacent to the village which are now part of the city of Omaha. He enlisted in Company A, Second Nebraska Cavalry for frontier service in the fall of 1862, and was mustered out late in the following spring.
John Gardner Knight was a successful stock farmer and was an honored resident of Douglas county until his death, May 19, 1907, in his seventy-ninth year, his death occurring on the home place. He was one of the best known men in the county, an early settler and a soldier of the early frontier days. His wife died on the home farm March 20, 1881. They had five children, all of whom now reside in Custer county: E. E. Knight; Minnie L., wife of A. W. Pierce, a sketch of whom appears in this work; John D., whose name heads this sketch; George William, married and living in Round Valley; Margaret W., Mrs. Jesse Pierce.
At the time of John D. Knight's birth Nebraska was still a territory and was generally known as a part of the great American desert. He has seen the development of the region from the frontier to a state noted for its well tilled farms and prosperity. He came to Custer county in September, 1883, made a selection of land in the same fall and the following spring filed on a homestead on section thirteen, township eighteen, range nineteen, building his sod shanty on the north half of the northeast quarter of the section. His sister, Minnie L., accompanied him upon his first trip.
On November 26, 1891, Mr. Knight married Elizabeth J. Pierce, and six children have blessed their union, all born on the homestead: Margaret Elizabeth, Clara Lovinia, Jessie Jane, Florence Frances, John Gardner, and James Pierce. The family are well known among the early settlers and are prominent in various circles. Mr. Knight passed through years of drouth and hard times in the early day in Custer county, but has never lost faith in the future of the region. He is a representative farmer and stockman and held in high esteem by all.
S. E. STROM.
S. E. Strom, who owns and occupies a valuable estate on section thirty-six, township twenty-nine, range one, west, Cedar county, Nebraska, is one of the early settlers of the region where he makes his home and has performed his share in the upbuilding and advancement of the public welfare. He is well and favorably known throughout his part of the county and has many friends.
Mr. Strom is a native of Sweden, born August 31, 1853, a son of Esprong and Hedrick (Larson) Strom. The father served in the army and received an injury during drill when he was thirty years old; he was partially disabled all his life.
S. E. Strom was educated in his native land and after leaving school remained at home and helped his parents until 1882, when he emigrated to America. He landed in New York and at once started for the west, locating first in Burt county, Nebraska, where he lived four years. In 1886 he came to Pender and in 1890 purchased school land, which he has developed and improved to make a comfortable home and productive farm. He has a three-acre orchard and grove, a source of pleasure and profit to the family. He devotes his place to general farming and stock raising and is one of the most successful men in the community. He is recognized as a public-spirited citizen and is representative of the better class of agriculturalists, who win success as the result of intelligence and business ability.
In 1880, Mr. Strom was united in marriage with Miss Enger Anderson, a native of the same locality in Sweden, and they are the parents of nine children: Nels, Albert and Helma, twins, Amil, Selina, Ellen, Nellie, Arthur, and Alice.
DANIEL M'CLURE. (sic)
Daniel McClure, the subject of this personal history, resides on section twenty-two, township fifteen, range seven, in Merrick county, Nebraska, where be has built up a home and farm through his industry and good business management. Mr. McClure is held in the highest esteem by his fellowmen.
Daniel McClure is a son of Alfred and Mary (Wintrode) McClure, was born in Indiana, June 23, 1846, and was youngest of three children, and the only one now living, his parents also being deceased. He received his education in the home schools and later engaged in farming.
In January of 1865, Mr. McClure enlisted in Company B, One Hundred and Fifty-third Indiana, Infantry, serving until the close of the war, and receiving his discharge in September, 1865, at Louisville, Kentucky, the time having been spent on guard duty at Hopkinsville, Kentucky, near the Cumberland river. After the war, Mr. McClure returned to Indiana, and in 1868 went into Tama county, Iowa, and engaged in farming; and on March 30, 1870, was married to Miss Viona Dowell of Indiana.
In the spring of 1873 our subject with his wife and one son came to Merrick county, Nebraska, and homesteaded one hundred and sixty acres of land in section twenty-two, township fifteen, range seven, which is still the home place. The family made the trip from Iowa in a covered wagon, being thirty-three days on the road, and it rained most of the time. They waited for seven days for the water to go down so they
couId cross the Elkhorn river and they camped at nights during the entire trip. Mr. McClure has about one hundred acres under cultivation, all of which he "broke out" himself. He first built a one-room log house in which the family Iived until 1879 and then built a sod house near the site of the present home, and lived there until 1886, when the present house was erected.
Mr. McClure has served on the school board of his district number fifty-one nearly all of his Nebraska years; also has been road supervisor, and has been serving as precinct assessor since 1905.
Mr. and Mrs. McClure have had twelve children born to them, seven of whom are living: Esther, deceased; Samuel, married, has seven children, and lives in Merrick county, Nebraska; Pearley, wife of Peter Sorgenfrei, has five children, and lives in Nance county, Nebraska; William, who resides at home; Elizabeth, a milliner; Charles, deceased; Walter, married, and residing in Merrick county.; Willis, a twin to Walter, married, has one child, and lives in Merrick county; Maggie, deceased; Emma, wife of Bert Bliss, has one child, and resides in Merrick county; Franklin, deceased; and Carrie, who resides at home.
Mr. and Mrs. McClure have passed through all the discouragements and trying experiences incidental to frontier life, and are widely and favorably known. Mr. McClure is the only pioneer left in his immediate neighborhood.
In compiling a list of the representative farmers of Knox county, Nebraska, a prominent place is accorded the name of Otto Schindler, who resides in section nineteen, township thirty-two, range six. For many years he has engaged in agricultural pursuits, and has done his full share, as an old settler, towards the development of the better interests of his community, and enjoys the respect and esteem of all who know him.
Mr. Schindler is a native born son of the state of Nebraska, his birth having occurred in Knox county, in 1874. He is a son of Carl and Anna Schindler, both natives of Bohemia. In 1869, our subject's father left his native land to come to the new world to make a fortune and to give his children better opportunities in life. He preceded the family to America to get a home started for them, and after landing in the United States, he proceeded westward, stopping in Chicago, Illinois, a short time where he worked as a laborer, then coming on to Knox county, Nebraska, where he took up a homestead in Bohemia township, and on this land built a good log house. He then sent for his wife and family, they coming to America on a sailboat.
Here our subject was born and grew to manhood; and here the family experienced many hardships and discouragements, for the three consecutive years of 1873-74-75 the grasshoppers destroyed all the crops, which was very discouraging to the new settler of this portion of the west. Later our subject's father took up a tree claim and a pre-emption claim.
As before stated, Mr. Schindler, our subject, was born on the old homestead farm, where he received such early advantages as were to be had in those days, the educational and other advantages increasing as our subject grew older, and of which he received his full share.
Mr. Schindler was united in marriage in 1902 to Miss Anna Havlicek, and Mr. and Mrs. Schindler are the parents of five fine children, whose names are as follows: Martha, Helen, Frank, Ralph and Edward.
Mr. Schindler, as before stated, enjoys the respect and esteem of all with whom he has to do.
He is now farming two hundred and sixty-six acres of land. In October, 1910, he purchased one hundred and sixty acres about two miles southwest of Nebraska, to which he and his family moved in the spring of 1911.
Among the prosperous farmers of Stanton county, Nebraska, none stand higher with their associates than the gentleman whose name heads this article. Mr. Buckendahl is the owner of a very valuable estate and is a man of excellent character and good business judgment, and well merits his success and good name.
Like many other settlers of Nebraska, Mr. Buckendahl is a native of Germany, and was born in Hanover in 1855, the son of Johan and Margueret (Weselo) Buckendahl. The mother died when he was but four years old. His childhood and youth was spent in Germany, and it was there that he obtained his education.
In 1872, Mr. Buckendahl, with his father, came to America, via Hamburg and New York. They came at once to the west, and located on a homestead in Pierce county, Nebraska. As the elder Buckendahl was a carpenter by trade, he put up with his own hands most of the buildings on that farm. He even sawed the lumber to build the house. They led a pioneer life, as there were but few settlers at this early date in the country, and met with all the losses and discouragements which were incident to such a life. Their crops for the first few years were a total failure, owing to the ravages of the grasshoppers. They were menaced by prairie fires in summer and by severe blizzards in winter.
Mr. Buckendahl next removed to Madison county, this state, where he took up a homestead, but be did not remain here very long, as in 1877, he came to Stanton county and later bought his present farm. He first acquired eighty acres, and has added to it until he owns four hundred acres.
In 1886. Mr. Buckendahl was united in marriage to Miss Minnie Timm. After only ten
years of life together, Mrs. Buckendahl died, in 1895.
In 1906, our subscriber was again married, to Miss Jessie Minsinger. They are the parents of three children: William, Henry, and Carl.
Mr. Buckendahl is interested in the public welfare generally, and is desirous of increasing the advantages of the locality in which he resides, in particular. He rendered assistance in organizing the school board of his neighborhood and has efficiently served as a member of the board.
J. W. WILSON.
To the men of perseverance and indomitable determination who came to Nebraska when it was yet undeveloped as an agricultural and commercial region, the present prosperity enjoyed in this state is due. Among the early settlers of Antelope county who have gained an enviable reputation as a citizen, may be mentioned J. W. Wilson, a prosperous and successful farmer.
Mr. Wilson is a native of Canada, where he was born August 23, 1841. He is the son of Thomas and Prudence (Draper) Wilson. His mother was also born in Canada. Mr. Wilson's father came from England. In 1843 Mr. Wilson, with his parents, moved to McHenry county, Illinois, where he lived twenty-six years, thence moving to the state of Iowa, where he remained for six years.
Mr. Wilson served in the civil war, enlisting in Company V, Fifteenth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, in 1861, serving under Captain Haywood in General Pope's division; but Mr. Wilson did not see much active service, being sick and in the hospital a greater portion of the time of his enlistment; he received an honorable discharge in the year 1862.
Mr. Wilson was united in matrimony May 11, 1873, to Miss Lizzie Bahl, who is American born, but her father was a native of Alsace Province, Germany, coming to this country in 1845, to the state of Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Wilson have had seven children born to them, whose names are as follows: Thomas, Albert, John, Jessie, Harry, Arthur, and Iva.
In 1880, Mr. Wilson with his family came from Iowa to Antelope county, Nebraska, taking up a homestead and a timber claim in section four, township twenty-four, range eight, which still remains the residing place of the family. In those earliest days of settlement in this section of the west, deer and antelope were plentiful. Mr. Wilson endured hardships and discouragements to such an extent in those pioneer days, that it seemed almost impossible at times to keep his family together and maintain his home; among other failures, the drouth of 1894 did its share of havoc, the hot winds utterly destroying every vistage of crops for that year.
Mr. Wilson now owns one hundred and sixty acres of good land, including eleven acres of trees. He and his family reside on the original homestead farm, in the location above mentioned, where they are surrounded by a host of good neighbors and friends.
STILLMAN P. GROAT.
Stillman P. Groat, who owns and occupies one of the finest homes in Broken Bow, Nebraska, is widely and favorably known as an enterprising and successful business man and a public-spirited citizen, being interested in all that affects the progress and welfare of his county and state. He is a native of the Province of Ontario, Canada, born January 2, 1839, a son of Preston and Lydia (Marsh) Groat, and sixth of their eight children. The parents were natives of Quebec province, the father of Scotch and the mother of English extraction, and both died in Michigan, he in 1886, at the age of eighty-one years, and she, in 1874. Besides Stillman P., those of the children now surviving are: Charles, of Chicago; and Mrs. Amanda Lazier of Michigan.
Mr. Groat grew to manhood in Canada, received his elementary education in the local schools, attended one year a select school, taught by Rev. Hugh Johnson, and then entered Provincial Normal College in Toronto, from which he graduated in 1863. For twenty years afterwards he followed the profession of teaching, becoming and an instructor in various Canadian colleges, and then served five years as government inspector.
Mr. Groat's marriage occurred in Middlesex county, Ontario, September 12, 1863, when he was united with Miss Gertrude Stripp, who was also of Canadian birth, and in 1881 he brought his family to Colfax county, Nebraska. He purchased five hundred and twenty acres of land near Schuyler, and the following year moved to Schuyler. In 1887 he came to Custer county, and secured a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres on section twenty-one, township nineteen, range twenty-five, also secured a timber claim of one hundred and sixty acres, and purchased nine hundred and sixty acres. He also leased five school sections, and for five years operated a large ranch. He then lived for a time in Waterloo and Omaha, spent a year traveling through the western states, and in 1898 came to Broken Bow. He engaged in hardware and furniture business for a time. He has been highly successful in his business ventures, and is a true friend of progress in various lines. He erected his present home in1908, and, being a great lover of flowers and plants, has many rare and beautiful specimens in his home. He is identified with various movements which will forward the interests of his county and state, and is one of the best known men in his part of the state.
Three children have been born to Mr. Groat and wife, namely: Gertrude, wife of L. G. Payzant, living near Ord; a daughter, Lincola S.,
lives at home, and William D., married, and living four miles from Broken Bow, has six children.
(Since writing the above we learn that Mr. Groat has sold his possessions in Nebraska, and moved to Monte Vista, in San Luis valley, in southern Colorado, and bought a large tract of irrigated land in that valley.)
Many of the early settlers of Greeley county are still living, and they take pride in recalling the days of hardship which all were compelled to undergo in the days when the country was new. Mansell Davis, the subject of this sketch, still occupies the log cabin (considerably remodeled, however,) which was built on his claim in 1874. Additions have been made to the original structure, so that it is a very cozy and comfortable home. In addition to the first homestead, he inherited other land, so that now he owns one of the finest farms in the North Loup valley, consisting of two hundred and thirty acres. A view of the vine-clad cottage is to be found elsewhere in this work.
Mansell Davis was born in Jamestown, New York, on December 5, 1848, and was the fourth of the five children born to E. Giles and Esther (Askay) Davis. He grew up in New York state, and when in his nineteenth year, his father, mother, brother and one sister moved to Wisconsin, Mansell joining them in Dakota, Waushara county, Wisconsin, in the fall of that same year. For several years he and his father remained here, farming.
In September, 1871, Mr. Davis was married to Miss Mary Rood, daughter of Charles P. and Marianne (Thorngate) Rood, of whom we write more at length on another page. At the end of this month, Mr. Davis, with his wife's father and brother, Charles P. and W. Herman Rood, and a young man from the same town, named John Sheldon, made an overland trip to the North Loup valley, Nebraska. At this time, Mr. Davis made a homestead entry on one hundred and fifty acres, and John Sheldon also took a homestead one mile north of Mr. Davis. These were the first two homesteads taken in the neighborhood on the south side of the North Loup river, in Greeley county.
The party returned to their homes, and in the following April, Mansell Davis and wife and his father, Giles Davis, with John Sheldon and wife and Mrs. James and her three sons, together with her mother and sister, started on the trip to the North Loup valley. Mr. Davis pushed on ahead and reached the homestead about four days before the others arrived. He built a dugout shanty, which was occupied for the first year, and then constructed a log cabin, seventeen by twenty-one feet, the logs being hauled from Cedar Canyon, near Burwell. As stated before, Mr. Davis still occupies this home.
His father, Giles Davis, also took a homestead near by, and was in many ways identified with the development of this country. He was at one time county surveyor, and died in April, 1880. The mother lived until March, 1888.
Mr. and Mrs. Davis have three children: Horace Mansell, editor of the Ord Journal and Broken Bow Beacon; Ainslie Loran, editor of the Leader-Independent of Greeley and the Journal of Palmer; and Mary, graduate of North Loup high school, class of 1912. Mr. and Mrs. Davis and family have long been considered as prominent in social and educational circles, and are well known and favorably regarded by their large circle of friends.
In the past, Mr. Davis has proved himself to be a citizen of the highest character and most unswerving integrity, and has served the public as county surveyor for several terms, and has also been county superintendent of schools. He is in every way a successful and prosperous man, a member of the Seventh Day Baptists, the Ancient Order of United Workmen and the Court of Honor. In politics he is independent of party lines, casting his ballot more for the man than for the party.
One of his severest experiences during the pioneer days was during the blizzard of January 12, 1888, when he made his way home, afoot, for North Loup, while, many men in going but a few rods in the storm were lost.
Residence of Mansell Davis.
HANS W. FISCHER.
Hans W. Fischer, an influential and reputable pioneer of Valley county, Nebraska, lives on his comfortable farm in section thirty-five, township twenty, range fifteen, which is the original Valley county home farm.
Mr. Fischer was born in the village of Osterrade, Schleswig, then a province of Denmark, on February 4, 1858, and was second of three children in the family of Otto and Elizabeth (Sturtz) Fischer, who had two sons and one daughter. The parents were Germans, living in the Danish province ceded to Germany in 1864. The family came to Nebraska in the spring of 1884. The mother's death occurred in Sarpy county, and the father died in Valley county, where he made his home with his son.
Mr. Fischer was raised on a farm in his native land, and, after growing to manhood, served his allotted time in the German army. In November of 1881 he came to America, sailing from Hamburg to New York on the "Polaria," making the voyage in nineteen days. With him came his brother, Henning Fischer, then in his eighteenth year.
After arriving in America, the brothers came to Sarpy county, Nebraska, where they located, and in 1882 Hans Fischer was married. He lived in Sarpy County on rented farms a year, then, in March, 1883, came to Valley county, where he
purchased the northeast quarter of section thirty-five, township twenty, range fifteen, which he has improved into a fine farm home. His first dwelling was barely completed, when it was swept away by the cyclone of September 11, 1883. A new dwelling was at once constructed, and in 1906 a large addition built, making it a commodious farm home. A picture of the place, with its orchard and groves, is to be found on another page.
Mr. Fischer was married in Sarpy county to Miss Anna Krambeck, a native of the village of Nebber, Holstein, Germany, January 4, 1882. Mrs Fischer is a daughter of Heinrich and and Elizabeth (Jepp) Krambeck. The father died from sickness contracted in the war between Germany and Denmark, in 1864. The mother married John Koch, and emigrated to America in 1881, settling in Clinton, Iowa, where she still resides. Mr. and Mrs. Fischer have twelve children, namely: Erna, Otto, Henning, Henry, Elsie, wife of Ed Albeis, lives in the north part of Valley county; Willie, Lizzie, Emma, Hans, Mary, Minnie and Freddie. Mr. and Mrs. Fischer and family are a well known family of Valley county. Mr. Fischer has a brother and a sister residing in Sarpy county.
Mr. Fischer is of democratic political faith, but votes independently of party lines. He is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen and the Modern Woodmen of America.
The country was all open and unfenced when Mr. Fischer came to Nebraska, and one could ride for miles in any direction without finding any obstruction. He was herding his cattle north of the house the day of the great blizzard of January 12, 1888. As the day was warm, he was riding without a coat. When the storm suddenly descended on him, he got what cattle he could before him, and drove them home. The rest drifted after them, and found their way into the shed, which was completely covered by the deep drifts. Three days later it was necessary to dig a tunnel through the snow to them, to feed and water the suffering animals. At the time of the severe hailstorm of August 18, 1883, Mr. Fischer and his father were returning from Grand Island, and sought shelter in a house near North Loup, where Mr. Fischer received a severe blow on the head when the hail broke all the windows and beat into the room.
Residence of Hans W. Fischer.
William Lierman, a well-known citizen of Pierce county, Nebraska, is a native of Pommerania, born on August 25, 1866, and in the same year came with his parents to the new world, taking passage on a sailing vessel from Bremen, and landing in New York, after a voyage of seven weeks. They at once proceeded to Wisconsin, locating in Madison county, where they resided for three years, the father working as a farm hand.
In the spring of 1870, they, together with six or seven other families, migrated to Nebraska, driving across the country with a yoke of oxen in a covered wagon, camping out along the way, The colonists reached West Point on the Fourth of July, made a stop there of about one week, then went on to Norfolk, which was their goal. The elder Lierman filed on a homestead three miles south of Norfolk, which he later sold, and moved to Pierce county, living for five years on rented land five miles southeast of Pierce. He then bought a farm of his own, adding to his first purchase until he owned four hundred and twenty acres, continuing in stock and grain raising until 1896, at which time he retired from active farming, and bought residence property in Hader, which he occupied until the time of his death, which occurred in 1898.
William Lierman is the third in a family of five children, but two of whom lived to maturity. He has little recollection of the days spent in Wisconsin, and the journey from there to Nebraska, as he was a mere child when his parents settled in Madison county, and is practically a native Nebraskan. He grew up on the prairie; remaining with his parents on the home farm until he was twenty-five years of age, when he married, and started farming on his own account.
In 1893, he moved to Pierce, and for two years was engaged in the livery business, then started the work of house moving and bridge building. His farm of one hundred and sixty acres, southeast of town, is cultivated by tenants, other land which he owned having been sold in 1908. In 1909, he remodeled his residence, converting it into one of the finest and most complete modern dwellings in the city.
Mr. Lierman's wife was Mrs. Alvina Sauerbier, a daughter of Fred Dagner, one of the pioneers from Pommerania, who came here with his wife, who was a Miss Saustre, in 1867. Mrs. Lierman first married Charles Sauerbier, and to them two daughters were born; Elsa, married Robert Schultz, a merchant of Pierce, and Lillie, wife of Henry Rohn, deputy county clerk. Mrs. Lierman was the first white child born in Norfolk. Her father was the first blacksmith there, and the reason for his coming to America was on account of having deserted from the German army, he fleeing in advance of his wife and children.
Mr. and Mrs. Lierman were married January 13, 1896. They have one daughter, Minnie, born in 1899. They have a beautiful home, and are popular members of their community. The family are members of the Lutheran church. In national and state politics Mr. Lierman is a strong republican, although locally he votes for the best man nominated, regardless of party.
SAMUEL W. ROE.
Prominent among the successful grain and stock raisers of Howard county, Nebraska, the gentleman here named occupies a foremost place. Mr. Roe resides on the northeast quarter of section fourteen, township fourteen, range eleven, situated in the above named county and state, where he has a well improved and fully-equipped grain and stock farm of one hundred and sixty acres, and also has a pleasant home built thereon.
Although Mr. Roe's birthplace was on Canadian soil, he could quite truthfully be called a life-long resident of his present abiding place, as he was brought here by his parents, Henry and Mary (McCracken) Roe, when but a baby of three months. Samuel Wesley Roe was born in Huron county, Ontario, Canada, December 26, 1871. Three months later, in 1872, his parents located in Howard county, Nebraska, homesteading the northeast quarter of section fourteen, township fourteen, range eleven, which, as before stated, is now the home of Samuel Roe, who also owns a section of farming land in another part of Howard county.
Howard county has been Mr. Roe's continuous residence place, with the exception of a time spent at the college at Central City. The Roe family were well known and highly respected pioneers of Nebraska. Our subject, Samuel Wesley Roe, was the fifth child. The father, Henry Roe, died February 11, 1908, at his home in St. Paul, to which place he had retired seven years before his death. His widow continues to make her home there. Mr. Roe is republican in politics, and has served his precinct in various local offices.
On September 17, 1902, Mr. Roe was married to Miss Jessie M. Ward, of Ord, Valley county, Nebraska, who was the second in a family of three children, all of whom are living. Her parents, Asahel and Amanda Ward, are still living in Valley county, the father in his ninety-second year, having been born in 1819. He is a well known pioneer citizen of Nebraska, coming to Howard county in 1871 from Iowa. This county remained his home for a few years, and he then moved to Valley county, where he has since resided.
Mr. and Mrs. Roe have had three children: Edgar Ward, born July 24, 1903; Claud Morris, born December 1, 1907, and Henry Howard, born June 9, 1909.
Mr. Roe is a prosperous and successful man of affairs, interested in the welfare of his county and state, and prominent in church circles.
GEORGE W. FITZSIMMONS.
George W. Fitzsimmons, born in Polk county, Iowa, on February 25, 1864, is the youngest of six children in the family of William M. and Maria Adams Fitzsimmons. The family moved to Atlantic, Cass county, Iowa, in 1872, and it was here that George W. grew to manhood years. He had good school advantages, and attended the high school at that place.
The father was a miller, but George W. took charge of a mercantile business in Atlantic when he was only eighteen years of age, just after the close of his high school years. He remained in this business for six years, and then took up the lumber business at Anita, Iowa, making this last change on account of his health, in order to get more outdoor work.
Later, he came to Scotia, Greeley county, Nebraska, engaging in the lumber, furniture and implement business under the firm name of Fitzsimmons & Graham. In the following April, 1892, Mr. Fitzsimmons purchased the Graham interests, and since then the firm conducts business under the name of George W. Fitzsimmons. He has a large and exceptionally well equipped lumber yard, a large stock of implements, and also carries a fine line of furniture.
Mr. Fitzsimmons has a large and constantly increasing business, and is regarded as one of the most successful and prosperous merchants of this section of Nebraska. He is well and favorably known as a hustling business man, and is also noticeable for his progressive ideas upon educational topics. He is a member of the Presbyterian church, in politics republican, and a member of the Masons, of which he is past master; of the Modern Woodmen and the Tribe of Ben Hur.
On November 28, 1889, Mr. Fitzsimmons married Miss Lottie J. Blue at Morrison, Illinois. Four children have been born to them, named as follows: Clinton B., Edna, Dorothy and George.
It is a curious fact that out of the large family of which he was a member, George W. Fitzsimmons was the only one to come to Nebraska. Two sisters are in Iowa, another in Montana, one brother in Kansas, and the other in Minnesota. The father died in Iowa in 1886 at the age of sixty-three years, and the mother then went to live with Mr. Fitzsimmons, the subject of this sketch. She died in 1898, at the advanced age of seventy-eight years.
The subject of this personal history was born in Germany, August 28, 1844, and was the eldest of three children, our subject and William and Bertha Gerecke.
In September, 1854, Mr. Gerecke's father and mother and their three children and two children by the father's former marriage, came to the United States of America, settling in Dodge county, Wisconsin, in the town of Hustisford, where the father worked at his trade of plasterer and brick mason.
Herman Gerecke, the subject of this sketch, from his tenth year, grew up in Wisconsin until
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