where he died in 1877. The mother, who was Mary Triner in maidenhood, is now living at Clarkson, Nebraska.
In 1877, Mr. Hampl married, and set up for himself, renting a farm for one year, and then returned to his trade for a livelihood, working in the mill near Schuyler for three years. Western Kansas was attracting settlers at that time, and Mr. Hampl joined the exodus to that region. He filed on a homestead in Trego county, built a house, and began the cultivation of his land. A succession of dry years followed, in which the farmer failed to recover even his seed, and disaster followed the settler year after year. Relinqiushing [sic] his homestead rights, Mr. Hampl returned to Nebraska, and was associated with his father-in-law for a period of one year. The two succeeding years he was employed by the Becker & Wright Company, grain and lumber dealers, in Schuyler, running the engine of the elevator. Buying a store in Schuyler, Mr. Hampl succeeded in losing upwards of three hundred dollars in six months, and, having no great amount of cash to lose, sold the business, and went to Linwood, intending to open a saloon, but after erecting a building, he could get no license. Having tied up all his money in the property, he saw only disaster staring him in the face, and, to retrieve, he got a government license, and sold wet goods on the quiet until he could get a good tenant for the place, and a year later sold it.
Returning to Schuyler, he bought land, two miles south of town, paying eleven dollars an acre, and, after residing on the tract three years, he sold it for twenty-five dollars an acre, and came to Boyd county, locating at Spencer in 1893. Two dry years followed, and his crops were a failure. He later relinquished, and bought a half section of fine farming land, one mile west of town, on which he has good tenant farmers. The property is worth, with cattle and machinery, upwards of ten thousand dollars. He owns a comfortable home in Spencer, where he has resided since 1901.
Mr. Hampl was married at West Point, Nebraska, October 2, 1877, to Miss Anna Henzl. Their three living children are: Lillie, wife of Otto Johnson, a traveling man, of Ord, Nebraska; August, a merchant of Spencer; and Stella, still under the parental roof.
Mr. Hampl was residing near West Point during the years of the grasshopper pests, and saw crops, ready for the harvest, ruined in a day. Wheat was cut off just below the heads, which dropped to the ground, and corn was devoured, leaving but the blackened, leafless stalks. One season they destroyed a coat belonging to Mr. Hampl, which he had left in the field while at work. Nothing was safe from their ravages. One year nine hundred bushels of wheat was all that was saved from one hundred and twenty acres that an hour before gave promise of as fine a crop as one could wish to see. This was kept to feed their teams, as the price was low, and corn not to be had.
Mr. Hampl knows the life of the pioneer, having been on the frontier much of his life. The first three years in Boyd county, Mr. Hampl lived in a sod house, and found it a comfortable dwelling. His barns and other outbuildings were, constructed of the same material.
He is now, while still in the prime of life, taking life easy, and enjoying the fruits of his early toil and privations. The west is kind to those who endure her hardships and persevere to the end.
Mr. Hampl is a republican in politics, and a member of the Modern Woodmen of America.
Among the leading old settlers and public-spirited citizens of Stanton county, Nebraska, who have aided materially in its development and advancement, a prominent place is accorded Henry Armbrust, who resides on his well-improved estate in section thirty-one. He has been a resident of this county for over twenty years, and for twelve years before that, was a resident of Douglas county, still in this state. He has an extensive acquaintance, and is held in the highest esteem by all.
Mr. Armbrust is a native of the province of Holstein, Germany, where he was born in 1862. His parents were John and Opel Armbrust, the father being a farmer. The mother died when Mr. Armbrust was but an infant.
The subscriber remained at home until 1876, when he came to America by way of Hamburg. After arriving in New York, he came direct to Douglas county, Nebraska. He remained here for a considerable length of time, most of this period being spent on a rented farm. In 1888, he removed to Stanton county, where he bought a farm, which he still occupies. He has made the best of his opportunities and observation, and has met with great success as an agriculturalist., He has steadily added to the improvements on his farm, until now it is a picture of thrift and good management. He has a very fine orchard and grove of about four acres, whose thrifty growth attracts the attention of all passers-by.
In 1882, Mr. Armbrust was united in marriage to Miss Anna Roder, of Douglas county, who is also a native of Germany. They are the parents, of six children, named as follows: Celia (Mrs. Charles Benson), William, John, Fred, Henry and Anan.
OLIVER M. HAYS.
Oliver M. Hays, whose name heads this article, is one of the leading agriculturists of Antelope county, now residing on section fourteen, township twenty-four, range seven.
Mr. Hays was born in Harrison county, Indiana, September 9, 1856. He is of English descent, his great grandfather having been born in Engand, but Mr. Hays' father was a native of Indiana and was one of the staunch citizens of that state, having been a member of the Home Guards during the Civil war, and participating in the defense of Mocksport at the time Morgan made his famous raid through that portion of Indiana. He married Miss Milessa Jacobs, who was born in Pennsylvania in 1835. In 1869, the elder Mr. Hays emigrated to Washington county, Iowa, taking his family with him, and making the trip in a wagon. This was at the close of the war, and methods of transportation were crude and undeveloped. There were but few railroads through the middle west, and then there was another side to the matter, as money was not plentiful in those days. The country was recovering from the most expensive and bitterly-fought war known in history, and the natural resources were exhausted.
It was in 1884 that O. M. Hays made his start that now connects him with the history of Nebraska. In that year he went to Wheeler county, Nebraska, where he entered a homestead claim on section thirteen, township twenty-four, range nine. In 1885, he moved to Antelope county, and took a preemption claim on section seventeen, township twenty-four, range eight.
Mr. Hays was married on December 30, 1880, to Mattie Bales, and they are the parents of seven children, as follows: Nettie Grace, married Thomas Wilson, and has three children; Blanche, May, married A. H. Hatfield, has one child; Maud; Flossie; Oliver; Bertie Lawrence, and Floyd Allen.
After his family arrived in Nebraska, Mr. Hays relinquished his claim in Wheeler county, and bought the farm on which he now resides. Mr. Hays takes great pride in his chosen work, in which he has been very successful. No one realizes better than he that the wealth of the world is based on agriculture. The earth produces real wealth, Mining, manufacturing and all other industries depend on the energy of man to develop them. Man depends on earth for his energy - yes, for his very existence. So that the agriculturist is the one on whose success depends the world. Mines may produce tons of gold and precious metals; factories may turn out endless quantities of finished products; learned men may discover hidden planets, and define the mysteries of the solar system; professors may work on the problem of squaring the circle - but all of these would be useless and obsolete but for the product of the soil. The man who takes part in bringing this wealth from the soil is the man who does more to advance civilization than all others, because he is the one who makes it possible. Without him, progress and civilization would cease. Without the agriculturist, industry would end, railroads would be without value, and commerce would be a matter of history.
Mr. Hays is one of the leading men in his community, favoring all forms of public improvement, and taking an active interest in all educational matters. His farm is one of the best and most productive in northeastern Nebraska, and his plan of diversified farming has proven a success. His farm is well watered, and has a splendid orchard of bearing fruit trees, also a beautiful grove of forest trees on it. The buildings are modern and complete.
JAMES E. WOOD.
James E. Wood and wife, who live in their nicely-situated, modern home, three-quarters of a mile east of Broken Bow, and also have a farm on Clear creek, enjoy the esteem of a large number of friends, and both are among the early settlers of the county. Mr. Wood and his wife have been living there since 1879, and his wife was brought there by her parents. Mr. Wood was born in Page county, Iowa, May 14, 1860, the third born of the seven children of Daniel and Anvasine Wood. Daniel Wood was born in Indiana, and became a resident of Iowa as a young man. He was there married to Anvasine Mansfield, February 21, 1856, their union taking place in Page county. She was born in Indiana. After marriage, they moved to Douglas county, Nebraska, and took up (squatters') early land privileges on the Elkhorn river in 1857, but owing to the country being so wild, and the Indians so hostile at that time, they remained in the territory but a year. At that time, Omaha was a little frontier town, containing a few houses, and surrounded by a sparsely settled region. Not caring to live in such an unsettled wilderness, they returned to Iowa, the trip back being made in the same manner as the one to Nebraska, with a team and covered wagon, and they had the usual experiences to be met by emigrants over the old "overland trail." Their oldest child, Clara, was a small infant when the move was made from Iowa, and their first son, Charles F., was born in Nebraska during their first year of pioneer life there. In 1861, Mr. Wood enlisted in Company K, Twenty-ninth Regiment, Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and served three years in the Civil war. He received an honorable discharge at the end of that time, and then returned to his home in Iowa.
In October, 1873, Daniel Wood, with his wife and their four children - Clara, Charles F., James E. and Minnie - emigrated to Nebraska, making the trip by team and covered wagon, following the same old overland trail the parents had followed before, and pointing out to the children many of their former camping grounds, and telling them incidents of the first trip. He showed them the location of his first Nebraska ranch.
He then made a homestead entry, northeast of Aurora, on Lincoln creek, in Hamilton county, and this remained the home place until 1888. By this time the children had all gone to homes of their own, and the father spent the winter of 1887 and 1888 in Custer county with his son, James E., then went on to Cherry county, and took up a homestead there, where his wife's death occurred, June 5, 1888. He remained there but a short time, then returned to Custer county, where he re-married, and lived for several years. In 1895, he moved to his present home in Kansas.
James E. Wood came to Hamilton county with his parents in 1873, and lived on the homestead farm there until 1879, when he and his father came with horses to Custer county, the latter taking up land, which several years later became the home of his son, James. He has had continuous residence in Custer county since 1883, and in the spring of 1884, began to improve his land for a permanent residence. This farm is on section thirty-two, township seventeen, range nineteen. He is one of the younger men who have held residence there so many years, and has helped materially in the improvement and development of his part of the county. He passed through the trying years of drouth and grasshoppers, hard times and other tribulations of the pioneer, and is accounted one of the most able and progressive farmers of the county, although he has but a small amount of land in his present home place.
Mr. Wood was married in Custer county, March 5, 1889, to Miss Margaret Hastings, daughter of Julius and Isabelle Hastings. The Hastings family came to Lincoln, Nebraska, from Freeport, Illinois, in 1871, and resided for a tmie [sic] in Grand Island before coming to Custer county in the fall of 1879. Mr. Hastings had come there in the spring of that year, and brought his family in the fall, making a permanent residence on their homestead, which was the first taken in his neighborhood. He died on the old home farm, east of Broken Bow, in January, 1890, and his widow died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Wood, in Broken Bow, in August, 1904, being survived by three sons and five daughters. Mr. and Mrs. Wood have eighty acres of land in their farm, and are near enough to the city of Broken Bow to enjoy the conveniences of town life, with all the advantages of living in the country. They have no children. Mr. Wood has a brother and two sisters living: Charles, of Oklahoma; Mrs. Clara Allen, of York, Nebraska, and Minnie, Mrs. Fremont Chessman, of Denver, Colorado.
JAMES T. FREY.
James T.. Frey, who was born in Valley county, Nebraska, September 27, 1888, and resides in section fourteen, township twenty, range fourteen, is a son of Christian L. and Annie (Truelson) Frey, both of whom are natives of Denmark.
Christian L. Frey, father of James T. was born in the village of Haderslau, province of Schleswig, Denmark, February 10, 1845; he is a son of Johannes and Maria (Lorensen) Frey. He came to the United States in 1871, sailing from Hamburg to New York, making the passage in eighteen days. He first settled in Warrensburg, Missouri; and while there five young men, all Danes, made the acquaintance of each other and decided to come to the North Loup Valley in Nebraska; these young men were Niels Anderson, Peter Mortensen, Jeppe Smith, George Moeller, and Christian Frey. Anderson, Mortensen, and Smith, came to Grand Island, Nebraska, purchasing two ox teams, a wagon, two breaking plows, and a camp outfit, etc., and came overland by way of Howard county to the North Loup Valley. They were joined later on by George Moeller in the North Loup Valley and the four homesteaded in section eight, township nineteen, range fourteen; several weeks later Mr. Frey who had been detained in Missouri awaiting mail from Denmark, joined them and took up a homestead on the southwest quarter of section six, township nineteen, range fourteen, and he made the fifth of the original Danish colony; the ox teams, plows, etc., were joint property, and the five men lived in joint habitation, having built a dug-out shanty on the Mortensen claim; in the fall of the year the men began to improve their own homesteads and to separate, each for himself. Their joint dug-out shanty on the Mortensen claim is known in Valley county history as probably the first claim shanty erected, and it was the scene of many varied incidents, the first school was held and first criminal suit was prosecuted in this shanty. All of these five men were energetic young men and did much toward the development of Valley county. Falle Miller also joined this little colony of Danes shortly after their location.
In 1880 Mr. Frey returned to Denmark and was married to Miss Annie Truelsen, a daughter of Jens and Maren Truelsen, and they soon came to their Valley county home in Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Frey have had five children, four of whom are living: Mary, wife of Ed Anderson, who lives in Fremont, Nebraska; Katie, and Ereka, both of whom are teachers in Nebraska schools, and James T., who holds a position in one of the large stores in Ord.
In 1905 Christian Frey sold the old home farm and he and Mrs. Frey went on a visit to the old home in Denmark, expecting on returning to live in California; after visiting a sister of Mrs. Frey a few weeks and making side trips out from San Francisco to view the country, his children and his friends in Valley county proved to have too strong a hold on him and he soon returned to the old Nebraska county. Mr. and Mrs. Frey and family passed through the early Valley county
days, and Mr. Frey has recollection of the Indian days which were days of adverse times; he also can remember when their plow shares were carried on foot to Dannebrog, fifty miles away, to be sharpened.
Residence on the James Frey Farm.
THOMAS C. BERRY.
Thomas C. Berry, proprietor of Pleasant Valley Farm, is one of the original homesteaders of Custer county, who still owns his first home, and he is a pioneer stock farmer of the region, passing through the year of disheartening drouth and other crucial periods. He is one of the most successful agriculturists in his part of the state and in the spring of 1911 erected a fine farm residence on his place which is modern in every respect, having water, furnace and gas, for the comfort and convenience of the family. A view of this especially improved home, with its large barns and other buildings adorns one of our illustrative pages.
Mr. Berry was born in Clinton, Oneida county, New York, September 23, 1858, the fifth of the nine children born to Thomas and Ellen (Rohen) Berry, and one of four sons. The father was a native of Ireland and was married in London, England, coming to America with his wife in 1850. They spent several years in New York and in 1869 located in Janesville, Wisconsin, removing two years later to Dallas county, Iowa. The father was a shoemaker by trade and lived several years in Dallas Center. The sons located on a farm near Dallas Center and in 1876 the father and family moved to Greene county, Iowa, the mother and father being now deceased. Four sons and two daughters still survive, but Thomas C. is the only one in Nebraska.
Mr. Berry grew to young manhood on a farm, and was educated in the public schools, but also learned the trade of carpenter. He was married at Jefferson, the county seat of Greene county, Iowa, February 19, 1882, to Elizabeth Soy, a daughter of William and Mary (Fennesy) Soy, all natives of Illinois. With their two little sons, Mr. and Mrs. Berry came to Custer county, arriving there October 5, 1887, and taking a homestead comprising the northeast quarter of section twenty-five, township seventeen, range eighteen, and this has since been the family home, where for twenty-two years they occupied a sod house prior to building their present commodious dwelling. Mr. Berry now owns a four hundred acre farm, the north half of section twenty-five, and eighty acres in section twenty-four, which is well improved and developed, being equipped for its successful operation and containing suitable and substantial buildings.
Mr. Berry and wife have nine children living, all except the first two born in Custer county, vis.: Charles and Thomas W., born in Iowa, the former unmarried, and the latter, who lives at Alliance, is married and has one child; Mabel, wife of Curtis Tucker, living in Nebraska, has one child; Ella, Maggie, Lawrence, George, Frank and Philbert, all at home. Mr. Berry and family are widely known, and have a large circle of friends. In national politics he is a republican, but in local elections votes for the best man.
Among the hardships of the early days, in 1893 a thousand-dollar crop was destroyed in the brief space of five minutes, and the meadow looked like a plowed field. During this terrible storm the family sought shelter in a cave. In 1894 the drouth left them nothing in their fields, but prosperity has smiled on them since. During the blizzard of January 12. 1888, Mrs. Berry was alone on the place, Mr. Berry being absent working at the Algurnal mills to support the family during those hard times.
"Pleasant Valley Farm," Residence of Thomas C. Berry.
A. B. SCHOENAUER.
A. B. Schoenauer, a dealer in live stock, now residing in Plainview, Nebraska, first came to this state in the spring of 1884, crossing the Missouri river at Blair on the railroad ferry.
He rented a tract northeast of Plainview, belonging to his father-in-law, for a year. In. 1885 he homesteaded a quarter-section along the north border of the county and for twenty years was industriously employed in cultivating his land to the best advantage, and engaged largely in stock raising and feeding. He seldom sold grain and usually purchased more, feeding it to young stock he had raised and purchased.
Our subject early established a reputation for sterling honesty, and his credit was so good at the banks that he could secure anything in reason over his sole name. He was in this way enabled to carry through deals and increase more rapidly his accumulations than men of less sterling reputation. His first large sale was of forty-four steers and seventy-five hogs for an amount exactly equaling the price of a piece of land he had bought. Never since his coming has he gone backward, each closing year has found him with a greater store of worldly goods than the year before.
In 1904, thinking that twenty years industry entitled him and his wife to less laborious existence, Mr. Schoenauer rented the farm and moved to Plainview. Here he continued to keep his business faculties from rusting by buying and shipping stock to the Omaha and Chicago markets. In November, 1908, he purchased the "Plainview News," and securing a competent man to edit and manage the plant, has since been owner and publisher of that well-equipped journal.
Mr. Schoenauer was born in Holmes county, Ohio, July 4, 1858. About 1860 his father moved with his family to Whitley county, Indiana, and later to Huntington county, where Mr. Schoenauer resided until coming west. He has made his way since the age of fifteen years. His father,
Frederick Schoenauer, was a native of Switzerland, while the mother, in maidenhood Sarah Fabra, was born in Ohio, of Pennsylvania ancestry.
Mr. Schoenauer was married in Indiana to Miss Eva Brandenburg, daughter of Eliphalet Brandenburg. To Mr. and Mrs. Schoenauer three children were born: Arlen, Viles, who is in his father's printing office; and Eber. Our subject has been a life-long democrat, and is affiliated with the Independent Order Odd Fellows, and the Knights of Pythias lodges. He was elected mayor of Plainview in the spring of 1910, and re-elected the year following, as candidate of the citizens' independent ticket, a party of liberal views.
Mr. Schoenauer has weathered the many winter storms that have swept the western plains since his coming. During the memorable blizzard of January 12, 1888, some of his cattle drifted in the storm to a neighbor's. Going after them, he found them safe and then made the return journey, facing the storm and safely reaching home.
His first residence was a log house standing on the land he homesteaded, it having been abandoned by an early settler who had become discouraged and moved away.
He was living on his homestead at the time of the ludicrous "Indian scare," when some hilarious participants in a charivari fired off their revolvers in the early hours of the morning, and started a stampede of the settlers to town, wrapped in blankets, spreading the report of Indian depredations as they came. Our subject and a neighbor, Mr. Hendershot, were out of the line of retreat and did not hear of the supposed uprising until the next day.
During the early days game was plentiful and getting credit for a fowling piece at the store of N. M. Nelson, Mr. Schoenauer kept his family supplied with game, and made payment for the arms at the time agreed upon, keeping his credit good.
In those days money was scarce, and during a harvest Mr. Schoenauer offered to bind wheat for a neighbor for seventy-five cents a day, but his offer was not accepted because the neighbor had no money with which to pay. The second year Mr. Schoenauer planted sixty-four acres of corn, twenty acres of oats and a small tract of wheat, cultivating and harvesting all himself without help. Corn in the early days sold for fourteen cents in cash or sixteen cents in trade. Two small horses was all he had with which to carry on his farm at first, a third one being purchased later. Most of the early settlers had oxen only. At times he did not have enough cash to buy a postage stamp. Our subject usually kept his crops over until spring, as prices were better and by such management prospered more rapidly than others who were not sufficiently forehanded to tide themselves over the winter season.
Mr. Schoenauer and his helpmeet richly deserve the competency they have won; their trials were many and severe in the early days on the frontier, days to which it is good to look back, and it is good to know those many hardships will never have to be endured again.
JOHN P. TAYLOR.
John P. Taylor, a leading old settler and prominent public spirited citizen of St. Paul, Nebraska is also one of the wealthiest and most influential men of Howard county. He has made this region his home since the early days of its civilzation, and his services to the vicinity have been invaluable and of such a character as to make him one of the universally esteemed and admired by his fellow associates.
Mr. Taylor was born in Vigo county, Indiana, June 17, 1838, and was the fourth in order of birth of five children born to James and Nancy Taylor, the family making that vicinity their home until our subject was eleven years of age. His mother died there when he was a small child, and the father with his little family moved to Ogle county, Illinois, in 1849, traveling by wagon the entire distance from the old home to the new.
In the latter place John received his education, and in his twentieth year he left the home farm and in company with a party of seventeen men from that vicinity, started for the gold fields California, going by the overland Utah route, traveling by wagon train and ox team. Upon arriving in Nebraska territory, they joined a larger party bound for the Eldorado, organized a wagon train comprising about twenty-five outfits, and begun their perilous journey through the plains of the west.
There were about one hundred persons in the party, which gave the greatest possible safety from bands of Indians and the usual dangers surrounding such a trip in the early days. They selected a captain of the train upon whom rested the responsibilities of leadership. During the journey they encountered many exciting incidents, meeting hostile parties of Indians, although there were no serious consequences suffered.
Upon reaching Utah, they entered camp and remained for three weeks, many of the men securing employment in the harvest fields and earning quite a little sum of money in this way. They reached the mining camps of California in 0ctober, 1858, and after two years spent in that locality during which time Mr. Taylor went through varied experiences and had some measure of success, he returned to the home farm in Illinois arriving just in time to cast his maiden vote for Abraham Lincoln as president of the United States.
At the breaking out of the war he enlisted in Company F, Thirty-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, saw active service for one year then received an honorable discharge on account of disability, and returned home. During his career as a soldier, he took part in the battles of Shiloh, Pittsburg Landing, and other minor encounters.
After returning to Ogle county, Mr. Taylor as united in marriage on October 13, 1863, to Susan K. Bridge. Mrs. Taylor was a native of Illinois, her parents being pioneers in the state. The young couple remained there for a short time after their marriage, going to Ashton, Lee county, Illinois, where Mr. Taylor engaged in grain and stock buying, following this occupation up to April, 1879, when they came to Sherman county, Nebraska, where our subject filed on homestead rights. He farmed there up to 1905, at which time the family settled in St. Paul, where Mr. Taylor has successfully carried on an extensive stock business, being widely known as a prominent man of affairs and enjoying the esteem and confidence of all with whom he comes in contact.
Mr. and Mrs. Taylor have had seven children, five now living, as follows: Frank J., Edward G., Mittie B., wife of A. M. Conklin; Charles T., and Eva M., all married and living in Howard county, except Edward G., who is in the-grain and milling business in Loup City.
WILLIAM J. HATHER.
William J. Hather, born in Dubuque county, Iowa, January 22, 1865, was sixth of ten children in the family of George T. and Sarah Jane (Carter) Hather. William lived in Dubuque county until April, 1885, when he followed his parents to Valley county, Nebraska.
Upon reaching this county, Mr. Hather first worked for Peter Mortensen on his farm, and there sowed thenty [sic] acres to clover and timothy the first, he believes, ever sowed in Valley county. After renting one year Mr. Hather purchased one hundred and sixty acres on section three, township nineteen, range thirteen, and began farming for himself; in 1892 he purchased an adjoining quarter section, making his farm of three hundred and twenty acres.
Mr. Hather made a success of his farming and stock raising, and as the years went by his place became one of the best improved grain and stock farms in this section of Nebraska. Recently Mr. Hather sold one-half of this farm and purchased a one-hundred and fifty-acre tract just across the river one mile north on Ord, known as the Cedar Lawn Stock Farm; this is now one of the best equipped stock farms in Nebraska; there is a fine eleven-room brick residence, with bath and steam heat, good buildings of all kinds, and what is probably the most ornamental lawn in Cedar county. Mr. Hather, with his own band, trimmed the two dozen fine cedars in Italian garden style, a most ornamental surrounding from which the place takes its name.
Mr. Hather is engaged in raising, shipping, and exporting registered Clydesdale horses, shortborn cattle and Poland China swine, and is recognized as one of the most prominent stock men in Nebraska. So excellent and famous are his thorough-bred swine that orders were secured from South America in 1910. He is a self-made man, coming into Valley county with only a pair of colts and ten dollars in cash.
Mr. Hather was united in marriage July 4, 1889, to Miss Nellie Vincent, in Valley county, Nebraska, a daughter of Horace C., and Alice (Graves) Vincent, who came from Michigan to Valley county in 1879. Mr. and Mrs. Hather have four children, namely: Alice, Fern, Charlie, and Wendall, all of whom reside at home.
Mr. Hather evidently likes to have the boys with him, as his stock farm is known as the W. J. Hather & Sons Stock Farm. He is a member of the Methodist church, a democrat in politics, and a laborer of the Ancient Order United Workmen.
It would be impossible to give a sketch of the history of northeastern Nebraska without including a review of the life of the gentleman whose name heads this article. Mr. White settled in the region during the earliest pioneer times, and to his influence and aid is due much of the prosperity enjoyed at the present time. He has helped build the schools, and assisted in every way possible to promote the best interests of the community in which he has resided for so many years.
Frank White was born in Will county, Illinois, and first saw the light on October 21, 1856. His father, Joseph White, was a native of Massachusetts, and married Laura Smith, who was born and reared in Vermont, both of English descent.
Our subject was reared in the vicinity of his nativity, following farming during his young manhood. In 1872 the entire family came to Madison county, Nebraska, traveling by rail to Columbus, and from there were obliged to drive to their destination, a distance of twenty-five miles, meeting with numerous incidents on the journey.
Shortly after arriving in Madison county, Mr. White filed on a homestead, and rapidly improved the land, which was merely a wild tract at the time he acquired it. In the early years of pioneering, he experienced all the hardships and setbacks familiar to those who came west when the country was in its primitive state, but he persevered through all, finally being richly rewarded for his efforts in the possession of a productive form, improved with every modern tool for cultivation, with substantial buildings, etc. In 1873. Mr. White suffered the loss of his entire crop by grasshoppers, and in 1894 everything was again destroyed by the hot winds which swept the region. There were also prairie fires to battle with, and many times has our subject helped fight the flames for days at a time, when there seemed scarcely any hope of saving their homes and property.
Mr. White was united in marriage in 1881 to Miss Rega Knapp, who is a native of Will county, Illinois, and to them have been born fourteen children: William, Clara, George, Frank, Emma, Os-
car, Rose, Matilda, Roy, Pearl, Phillip, Edward, Cora, and Alfred.
For many years prior to the death of Mr. Ashworth, he was a leading citizen and successful farmer of Custer county, Nebraska. He came to this county in 1880, and by dint of persistent industry and good management, became the owner of a fine estate. He was a man of excellent character and enjoyed the confidence of the people of this Community to a marked degree.
Mr. Ashworth was born in Iowa, on the fourteenth day of August, 1852, and was the eldest of ten children born to Jasper and Sophia (Miller) Ashworth. His father was a veteran of the Civil war and died in Iowa in February, 1890. The mother is still living. Mr. Ashworth grew to manhood on the Iowa homestead and received his elementary education in the local school. Later he attended a college in Chicago for a couple of years.
On December 25, 1888, in Marion county, Iowa, he was married to Miss Matilda Buckley, a native of West Virginia. They lived for two years in Iowa, and then in December of 1880, came to Custer county, Nebraska, where he took up a homestead of a quarter-section, with an adjoining quarter-section of timber land, about four miles east of Ansley. He lived on this homestead for twenty years.
Mr. Ashworth was closely identified with the development of this section and always lent his influence to every measure which had for its aim the ultimate progress of the community along all lines. He was instrumental in organizing his school district and served as director for many years. He passed away on the first of October, 1902, on the farm which had been his home for so many years, and was survived by his wife and five children. Of the children, Ralph, Grant, Eva May and Carl, are still at home; Ora is now married to Willard Moody and lives in Custer county. The eldest son, Walter, died in the Philippine Islands during the Spanish-American war. He was a member of the Twenty-sixth Oregon Infantry.
After her husband's death, Mrs. Ashworth moved on a farm nearby, which he had purchased some little time before, and lived here until 1909, when she left the farm, and moved to the town of Ansley, where she built the comfortable home which the family now occupy. She still lives there, surrounded by loving children and a host of friends, and enjoys the respect and admiration of the entire community. Her own mother, Martha Blaine Buckley, is still living in Duel [sic] county, Nebraska.
In selecting land on which to build a permanent home, much is to be considered. The task is less difficult in a country where civilization has endured for some time, and where the results of man's labor can be justly estimated, but in a new country, where climate and soil are both untried, the task is more serious. To decide unwisely means many years of toil practically wasted, while a wise judgment brings a reward far beyond the expectation of the early settler. All honor is due the pioneers of our country, for its present prosperity is largely the result of their labors.
One of the most prominent pioneers of Wayne county, Nebraska, is David Herner, who owns a pleasant home in section nineteen. He was born in Canada in 1854, the son of Samuel and Mary Herner. He obtained most of his education in Canada, and in 1866, came to Illinois, with his parents, where he remained for eleven years.
In December, 1876, David Herner came to Wayne county, Nebraska, where he purchased the homestead of J. R. Russell, consisting of one hundred and sixty acres. His experience during the first few years was rather disheartening, as he was called upon to suffer many hardships. Prairie fires formed a peril which was ever threatening the settler during the summer, while in winter there were the terrific blizzards, which were a source of much loss and suffering. By dint of sheer pluck and perseverance, however, our subscriber refused to be beaten by the elements, and remained year after year, each season a little less hard than those preceding until now, after a residence in this county of more than thirty years, he is in a position to take his ease after his years of toil. Since coming to Wayne county Mr. Herner has added to his first purchase of land, and now owns two hundred and forty acres. In November, 1910, he began building one of the finest and best equipped homes in the county. It is two stories high, heated by furnace, lighted by acetylene gas, and has a bathroom - in fact, it is modern in every respect. It is now completed and occupied by the family.
Mr. Herner's work was made much harder during the first few years of his life on the homestead, owing to the fact that he had to do his own work both in and out of the house, as he was "batching it" at the time. In 1882, he was united in marriage to Miss Mary Park, of Dixon county, and they have had but one child, Nellie, who is at home.
In politics Mr. Herner is a democrat, although not active in politics - never caring for office.
ANDREW JACKSON HUXFORD.
The gentleman whose life history is here presented is widely known as one of the oldest settlers and most influential citizens of Merrick county, Nebraska. Mr. Huxford is the son of Charles and Margaret (Green) Huxford, and was born in Indiana, near Terre Haute, January 18, 1834. He was fifth of ten children, and has one brother, John, living in Indiana, the others being deceased, as are also the parents, the father having died in 1867, and the mother in 1874, both passing away
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