there were only four families in the section, and during those times their only church services were held in a sod building. Since then they have seen the county grow to be one of the most fertile and thriving communities, and have the satisfaction of feeling that they have been a part and parcel of this growth.
PETER JERMANPeter Jerman, one of the prosperous ranchmen of Cherry county, is an old settler of Merriman precinct, and has a wide circle of acquaintances in the community in which he resides. He has built up a good home by his industry and honest dealings, and enjoys a comfortable income from the fruits of his labors.
Mr. Jerman was born in Jackson county, Iowa, March 10, 1852. His father, Peter Jerman, Sr., a French Canadian, was a miner. He was accidentally killed four months before our subject was born, leaving a wife (who was Mary Ann Flathers, of Irish descent), and a family of two small children to support. Our subject lived with his uncle, Thomas S. Flathers, in Center county, until he was thirteen years of age, then struck out and hustled for himself, making his own way ever since. During his early life he attended school three months in the year, having to return three-fourth of a mile at noon to do the chores and get his lunch. He severely froze his feet the winter he was ten years old. He took a man's place in the harvest field at nine years of age, following farm work in different parts of Iowa, clearing new land, which was rather rough work for a boy of his years. He was also employed on a railroad for nine months, after which he went to farming and continued at that for two years. At the end of this time he gave it up and went to work for a lime manufacturer in Iowa, having charge of three lime kilns at Maquoketa, remaining at that work for the following eight years. In 1885 he first landed in Cherry county, and located on sections 18 and 19, township 33, range 36, on the Niobrara river. When he struck this place all the capital he had was one cow and a calf, one pig and eight dollars in cash. He lived here for nearly three years, proved up on pre-emption, and then took his present homestead in section 29, township 34, range 37, where he has lived continuously ever since. This farm comprises eight hundred acres of good land, including homestead claims, and he has a hundred acres under cultivation, and on this raises "banner" crops. Most of his land excepting the new homestead is valley land. He has sixty head of cattle and other stock. The place is well improved with buildings and fences, has a large number of young trees planted, and all machinery for conducting a model ranch and farm. In addition to his ranching Mr. Jerman has for a number of years been employed on section work for the Northwestern Railroad at Merriman.
Mr. Jerman was married November 1, 1875, to Miss Mary Ann Greener, born in Dubuque, Iowa, in 1856. Her father, Joseph A. Greener, was born in Bohemia, was reared there until twenty years of age and then came to this country, where he was married in Garrone, Jackson county, Iowa, to Rosa A. Clark, of American stock. Mr. and Mrs. Jerman have five children, named as follows: Joseph W., Mary R., a successful teacher of Cherry county; Flora E., wife of E. G. Ward; Florence G., wife of Ira Rose; and Francis. Mr. Jerman and his family are now in position to enjoy the fruits of their hard labor. They have a pleasant home and farm, and he is glad now that he stuck to Nebraska, although he has seen some hard times, often felt discouraged and ready to give up, but is satisfied that he could not have done as well in any other place.
He takes a commendable interest
in all local affairs and has served his community as constable for
a number of years. He has never held any political office, as he
says he has had too many other things to engage his attention. He
is a Democrat, and with the family an adherent of the Catholic
faith. On another page is shown a view of the residence of Mr.
Jerman and family.
JOHN H. LACYJohn H. Lacy, one of the foremost business men of Harrison, is a member of the firm of Lacy & Dieckman, handling hardware, harness, lumber, grain, coal and machinery, and they conduct one of the largest stores of its kind in Sioux county, Nebraska
Mr. Lacy was born in Ontario, Canada, in 1867, on a farm. His father, Patrick, was also a native of that country, of Irish blood, and his mother was Elsie Hudgin, born and reared in Montreal. When our subject was a lad of about eight years, the family left Canada, and settled in Iowa, where he was raised and educated in the country schools, assisting his father in the work of carrying on the home
farm. When he became of age he went to Ida county, in western Iowa, and there worked on farms for about six years, and at the end of that time began farming on his own account and remaining there for about two years.
Mr. Lacy came to Sioux county in 1895, taking up a homestead located seven miles northwest of Harrison, and proved up on his land, improved it in good shape and putting up good buildings. The farm contained one hundred and sixty acres of good land and he lived on that place for about seven years. He was principally engaged in raising small grains and also in the stock business on a small scale, and did fairly well, but finally gave it up and bought a ranch farm in Kansas and spent one year and a half in that state. In 1903 he came back to Nebraska and purchased his present business, and has made his home here continuously since that time. The firm have (sic) improved the store considerably, putting in a large stock of goods and have built up a good trade. (A sketch of the life of Mr. Lacy's partner, John Dieckman, who came into the business in 1906, will be found in this volume on another page.)
Our subject is also owner of a Kinkaid homestead consisting of four hundred and eighty acres in section 6, township 31, range 55. He has put over three thousand dollars' worth of improvements on this place and is still engaged in farming and ranching to quite an extent.
In 1892 Mr. Lacy was united in marriage to Matilda Dieckman, a sister of his partner. Mrs. Lacy's father, Henry Dieckman, is an old settler and well known resident of this county. Four children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Lacy, namely: John H., William H., Elsie and Chester.
Mr. Lacy takes a commendable interest in all local political and school affairs, and has held school office for many years and done his full share as a citizen. He is a Democrat.
A. E. JOHNSON AND A. G. JOHNSONAlbert E. Johnson, President, and A. G. Johnson, Cashier of the Farmers' State Bank of Loomis, Phelps county, Nebraska, are conspicuous examples of the success attending the Swede settlers who come to this country to carve out for themselves a home and fortune. This bank was organized in 1900, and purchased by the two gentlemen mentioned in 1905. The entire management falls upon A. G. Johnson, who was educated in the public schools. He qualified himself as a thorough accountant by a corespondent course with Bryant and Stratton College, and by strict application and hard work became an expert in his line of work.
The father of our subjects was a native of Sweden who came to America when a young man, settling in Kane county, Illinois. He was married in Sweden previous to coming to America but all of his children were born in America. In 1880 they came to Nebraska, locating in Phelps county, homesteading a quarter section in section 6, Laird township, and so well did they plan and work that at the death of the father, which occurred April 24, 1901, he left four hundred eighty acres of fine land, each son thus receiving an ample estate.
As an instance of the prosperity of this county, A. G. Johnson states that in 1896 the total deposits in Loomis banks was $6,000, and at the present writing, the deposits amount to over $250,000. The stockholders of the Farmers State Bank are James McClymont, President; A. G. Johnson, Cashier; Lynn Snodgrass, Vice-President; A. L. Johnson and Albert E. Johnson.
A portrait of Mr. A. G. Johnson
will be found on another page of this volume.
T. B. CAMPBELLT. B. Campbell, the popular and efficient train dispatcher for the Republican Valley division, resides at McCook, Nebraska, and is well known all through this locality as a citizen of true worth.
Mr. Campbell was born at Sheppard, Isabella county, Michigan, in 1858, and removed to Mansfield, Ohio, with his parents when a small boy. His father, Samuel J. Campbell, was county clerk of Isabella county and a native of Chester county, Pennsylvania, and family originally coming from the north of Ireland, where our subject's grandfather, John Campbell, was born. His mother was Jane A. Barnett, daughter of James Barnett, an old resident of Philadelphia, who was a manufacturer of edge tools. The Barnetts came from Holland to this country, locating in New York, and were in the Revolutionary war. A brother of our subject, J. W. Campbell, is assistant cashier of the 'Frisco Railway, located at Memphis, Tennessee, and another brother, J. B. Campbell, is a banker at Yuma, Colorado. When he was eighteen our subject began for himself, obtaining employment with the Pennsylvania Railroad at Mansfield,
Ohio, in 1876, and ran from there to Fort Wayne, Indiana. Two years later he went to the superintendent's office, where he learned train dispatching, and the following year was attacked with malaria fever and was compelled to go west, and settled in Nebraska, and since that time his health has been perfect. During the year 1880 from April 25 to June 1, he was on the construction force of the B. & M Railway from Lister to Table Rock, and at this time the telegraph outfit was moved from Pawnee City to Fremont Butte, five miles south of Akron. In 1882 there was one passenger train per day each way, and now there are in all eight heavy passenger trains in a day. Between 1882 and now the freight record is: Then one freight train per day, and now there are four or five each day, and one of the trains now would have made four of that time, and this business has increased easily twenty-four per cent in twenty-six years. Today there are more operators in the McCook office than there was in 1882 on the whole line. At that time T. G. Rees was chief dispatcher and J. F. Forbes, J. F. Kenyon and our subject were trick men between Hastings and Denver. Today there are nine trick men, two chief dispatchers and one relief man.
The most exciting experience that Mr. Campbell ever had in his work was in March, 1886, when twelve cars loaded with coal were blown out of the Akron yards onto the main line and sent east on the down grade. The first intimation he had of this accident was a message from Hyde, Colorado, that these cars had just passed there at sixty-five miles an hour. The St. Louis passenger for Denver, with every seat taken, should just at that moment be taking water at Haigler. Engineer Hoag was in charge, who in the strike of 1887 was chairman, for the B. & M. division. Mr. Campbell called Haigler and No. 39 had just pulled out. This passenger train was sixteen miles east of Wray and the freight cars running wild thirty-four miles west, so our subject laid his plans at once. He called the agent at Wray and told him to get the night operator at once, and for the agent to go to the west switch, and the night man to the east switch, and put whichever train came first onto the siding and let the other one through on the main line. He also ordered the section men at Wray to go the curve or siding and to ditch the freight cars if the passenger train did not get on the siding and clear. The wind was blowing at a terrific rate, so that the section had just before been obliged to abandon their work, but they obeyed the orders. The first to come was the passenger at full speed. The night operator threw the switch and signaled to take it without a slow-down. In it rushed, and at that moment the runaway cars rounded the curve at a terrific rate, and the agent gave them the main line, and in a moment they had cleared the station and rushed on down the track. The engineer, conductor and passengers were horror-struck when they saw the terrible engine of destruction pass them and realized that they had escaped by a few seconds, for the whole train would have been ground to atoms, and hardly a person could have hoped to escape a horrible death. It was just twenty-one minutes from the first message to the time of safety. The superintendent stood by our subject breathless during this time, watching him operate the wires, and both seemed to grow years older in those few moments. An east bound freight was put on sidings at Benkelman, and the engine took after the runaways, when they went by. They overhauled the cars in an eight mile run and the fireman jumped from the footboard to the car and going to the farther end applied the brakes and brought the cars in without any mishap. Years later this incident was written up for Haper's Magazine by Spearman, and was regarded as one of the hairbreadth escapes among railroad incidents.
Mr. Campbell was married in 1881 to Miss Ella M. Alter, of Parnassus, Pennsylvania, whose family were well-known pioneer settlers in that state. Mr. and Mrs. Campbell have three children, named as follows: Harry A., with the B. & M. Ry., employed as timekeeper; Mrs. E. J. Kates, residing at Plattsmouth, Nebraska, and Ruth, at home.
CLARENCE A. RIPLEY*Charles* A. Ripley, one of the pioneers of Keya Paha county, has served his county in different capacities for many years, and enjoys the confidence and esteem of his fellowmen.
Mr. Ripley was born in Lockbridge, Jefferson county, Iowa, February 20, 1858, the eldest in a family of three children. His father, Wm. E. Ripley, now deceased, was a well-known merchant descended from Yankee stock; his mother, Miss Isabella Vanwinkle, was born in Indiana of American parents. The family removed to Osceola county, Iowa, where the boy remained until twenty-two years of age when he returned to Jefferson county and entered the employ of the C. B. & W. Ry., as telegraph operator at Lockridge, remaining
with that company for three years. In 1882 he was married to Miss Hester L. Cutshall, daughter of Eli Cutshall, of Pennsylvania Dutch stock, an old settler in Buchanan county, Iowa. Seven children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Ripley, named as follows: Jessie B., Bessie M., William E., Hazel D., Madge E., Sterling M., and Genevieve. After his marriage Mr. Ripley farmed in Iowa for two years, and in 1884 came to Keya Paha county and took a homestead in section 14, township 32, range 21, and for seven years led the life of a farmer.
In 1891 he moved to Springview and established a livery business, continuing in this for a year, when he was appointed postmaster of the village, holding this office for about six years. In the fall of 1899 he was elected county clerk on the Republican ticket, and twice re-elected, performing his duties faithfully and well. Mr. Ripley is a public spirited citizen, takes an active part in both local and state politics, and has represented his county at several state congressional conventions. He has been engaged in the abstract and real estate business and in August, 1907, purchased a lumber yard in Springview, to which he is devoting his energy; he also has extensive farming interests, owning several bodies of land aggregating one thousand one hundred and twenty acres, of which three hundred and forty acres are under cultivation. He is recognized as an able and efficient business man who well deserves a place among the makers and builders of Keya Paha county. He is actively interested in the Masonic, the Pythian and the Woodmen lodges of Springview.
*Portion between the two asterisks in the above bio appears exactly as it is in the original book. Interpretation is left to descendants.
AUGUST G. NEUMANNAmong those who have passed through all the early Nebraska times in building up a home and establishing a reputation for themselves, this gentleman deserves special mention as a worthy and substantial citizen of his community. Mr. Neumann is an active public-spirited man, and has held many important positions since becoming a resident of Deuel county, many years ago.
Our subject was born in the Province of Rosen, Germany, in 1854. When he was an infant his parents came to America, the father settling in Waukesha county, Wisconsin, and there he was raised and educated, attending the common schools and assisting his parents in the work on the home farm. When a young man of twenty-five years he came to Nebraska, locating in Sidney, and purchased a ranch near Lodgepole, making that his home for eight years, engaging in the sheep business and carried it on all of that time, during the first four years living all alone, roughing it most of the time, camping out winter and summer. After leaving that ranch he came to Deuel county, settling on a ranch three and a half miles southeast of Chappell, and there began raising cattle and horses. He put up good buildings, planted trees and fenced the place, improving it as rapidly as possible, and finally became owner of two thousand six hundred acres, which lies along Lodgepole Creek for a distance of two miles, making it an ideally situated ranch. He occupied the place up to 1893, then moved to Chappell and took possession of the old Johnson House, and was proprietor and manager of the hotel for thirteen years. He became a familiar figure in public affairs, and was known far and wide to the traveling public as a genial and popular host, his house being liberally patronized by all the commercial men going through this part of the state. Mr. Neumann was married in 1884 to Miss Mary Barrett, whose father, Harry Barrett, was a pioneer in Western Nebraska, and who helped in the construction of the Union Pacific Railway when it was built. Our subject is the father of four children, who are named as follows: Guy, Grace, Harry and Mary.
Politically Mr. Neumann is a Republican, and is now serving as County Commissioner, this being his second term. During 1885-'87 he held the same office in Cheyenne county. He has helped establish the schools in his community, and held various school offices, at present being a member of the School Board of Chappell.
HON. W. G. COIEHonorable W. G. Coie, residing in Hays township, Kearney county, retired farmer, is proprietor of a fine estate adjoining Minden, where his family occupy a beautiful new residence. Mr. Coie was elected on the Democratic and Peoples party to represent Kearney county in the state legislature for 1896 and 1897. He has always been active in political affairs here, having been assessor of Sherman township for five years, and also township clerk for several terms.
Mr. Coie is a native of Columbiana county, Ohio. His father, Robert Coie, was born in Donegal, Ireland, and came to America when a young man, settling in Ohio, where he met and married Miss Mary Elder, who resided
in Coshocton county. She was one of a family of nineteen children, her father also a native of Ireland. In 1872 our subject came to Nebraska, locating at North Bend. He came here from Iowa, where he had farmed in Munroe county and later in Ringgold county. His brother, John Coie, was a member of the Iowa state legislature elected on the Republican ticket from Ringgold county to represent his district. One brother lives in Columbiana county, Ohio, and two others, Thomas and Samuel, served in the Union army for four years, the latter dying during the war. He was wounded at the battle of Murfreesboro.
In 1884 Mr. Coie came to Sherman township, where he bought one hundred and sixty acres of school land and farmed there up to 1906, at which time he met with a serious accident through being kicked by a horse. He then sold out his farm and moved to his present place. While farming, he dealt largely in stock, making a specialty of pure bred hogs and fine horses and cattle, and was the owner of a number of as fine animals as could be found in this part of the state.
In 1873 Mr. Coie was married to Miss Margarette J. Dunlop, of Mount Ayr, Iowa. They are the parents of five children, namely: Nannie, William R., Mabel O., a teacher in the Minden schools; Mary and Una. The family are members of the United Presbyterian church and are highly esteemed throughout the community as worthy citizens and good neighbors.
WILLIAM H. KETCHAMWilliam H. Ketcham, an enterprising and energetic business man and worthy citizen of Crawford, Nebraska, is one of the pioneers in this section of the country.
Mr. Ketcham is a native of Northumberland, Pennsylvania, born in 1841. His father, Lorenzo Ketcham, was a prominent man of Northumberland, of American descent; his mother's maiden name was Catherine Crissman. He was reared in his native state until he reached the age of fourteen years, then went with his parents to Washington city and from thence to Philadelphia, where he learned the printer's trade. He afterwards worked on newspapers in different cities, including New York, Pittsburg, Louisville, Chicago and St. Louis, and for twelve years worked on the morning papers in different cities. In 1875 he settled in Indiana where he started a paper called The Gosport Gazette, and ran this for four years, then went to Kansas for a short time. In 1881 he came to Pawnee county and established the Argus Tabarock, but soon sold out and moved into Holt county, locating in Stuart and there started the Stuart Ledger, which was the first paper printed at that place He was editor and proprietor for about four years, and built up a large circulation and made a success of the enterprise.
In 1886 Mr. Ketcham landed in Crawford, and began working on a newspaper, the Crescent, which he ran for a year, then established what is now called "The Tribune." This is one of the principal papers of the town and has a wide circulation, surviving twenty-nine competitors since its start. Mr. Ketcham has a complete, up-to-date job and printing office and does all kinds of work in this line.
In 1898 our subject was appointed postmaster of Crawford under President McKinley, and re-appointed at the end of his term, but resigned to devote his entire time to the management of his business. He takes an active interest in matters of local importance, politically and otherwise, has always been a strong Republican, and an ardent anti-railroad and corporation control man.
Mr. Ketcham was married in 1871 to Miss Sierra Navader Brannock, a native of California. They have a family of four children, namely: Roy, Nellie, Willie and Harry.
C. A. EDWARDSAmong the leading public spirited citizens of Kearney, Buffalo county, Nebraska, the name of C. A. Edwards merits a foremost place. He is a business man of more than ordinary ability and has gained the esteem and confidence of all with whom he has had to do since locating in Nebraska.
Mr. Edwards was born in Moline, Ill. He was educated at Valparaiso, Indiana, and from 1894 to 1902 held the position of manager and engineer of the Gothenburg Water Power and Irrigation Company, located at Gothenburg, Nebraska. He built for this company twenty miles of irrigation ditch, also the orchard and alfalfa ditch at Cozad. In 1902 the Gothenburg company sold out all their interest to the Platte Valley Cattle Company. From 1887 to 1891 he was county surveyor of Dawson county, and he was the engineer in the building of the Kearney & Black Hills railway, from the former place to Callaway. Prior to coming to Nebraska our subject was a resident engineer on the Burlington, Cedar Rapids and
Northern railway. He has platted many of the town sites through the western part of the state of Nebraska, and he has calls from all over this part of the state for his services. He has followed his profession as civil engineer and surveyor for the past twenty-four years in this part of the country, first coming to Nebraska in 1885, when he located at Guernsey, near Sumner. In 1902 he was elected county surveyor of Buffalo county, also city surveyor of Kearney, and has filled both of these positions with credit, and met with marked success in every undertaking. Mr. Edwards is also interested in agricultural pursuits to some extent, and is the owner of a fine farm in Dawson country. He was married April 14, 1865, to Miss Alvina Lulen, a native of Dows, Iowa. They have five children--Florence, Gordon, Herbert, Gladys and Frank, all at home.
E. A. CARRIERE. A. Carrier, who owns and operates one hundred and sixty acres of land on section 16, township 20, range 51, is one of the substantial farmers and highly esteemed citizens of his community. He is a pioneer of his county, and has devoted his entire career to farming and ranching, making a success of the business.
Mr. Carrier was born in New York state February 11th, 1859, and lived there until he was seven years, then came to the eastern part of Nebraska, where our subject was reared. When he was twelve years old, his father died, and in 1887 E. A. left his mother's home and came to Cheyenne county, taking up a homestead on section 14, township 20, range 51, which he has improved in good shape. All of this is under ditch and consists principally of hay land. He has good buildings, plenty of water and every convenience of modern farming.
The father and mother of our subject are both dead. On November 30th, 1880, he was united in marriage at Arlington, Neb., to Melissa Lamberson, who was born and reared in Stark county, Ohio. To them have been born seven children, named as follows: Laura, married to Robt. E. Davis, they living at Bayard; C.C., who is married, and R. L. S., Myron, Florence, Myrtle and Julia, who are living at home
They have a very pleasant home and form a most interesting and congenial family circle. Mr. Carrier is a man of exemplary character, most pleasant and cheerful disposition, held in the highest esteem by his fellowmen. He is director of School District No. 44.
ED. COLLINSAmong the leading merchants of Merriman, the gentleman above named is accorded a first place by reason of his industry and integrity, through which he has built up a splendid patronage and gained the esteem and respect of all with whom he has ever had any dealings. Mr. Collins has made Nebraska his home since his early boyhood, and is thoroughly familiar with the entire western part of the state, and is one of the substantial citizens of his community.
Mr. Collins is a native of Ulster county, New York, born December 29, 1869, on a farm. He is a son of T. H. and Louisa (DePew) Collins (the latter dying in New York while Edward was a small child). T. H. Collins came to western Nebraska in the spring of 1885 with his family of three children, taking up a homestead in Dawes county. The family drove from Sidney on the Fort Robinson and Black Hills trail into that county to their homestead, the trip consuming many days and nights, the latter spent in camping out in a tent. Mr. Collins built one of the first frame houses ever put up in this region. In 1890 our subject started out for himself, going to Bessimer, Wyoming, where he worked at the printer's trade, then went to Casper and was employed on the Casper Derrick, remaining there for two years. He next went to Whitney, Nebraska, his old home town, where he opened a store and was in business there for a number of years. In 1900 he sold out this store and came to Merriman, purchasing the general store of Frank E. Coffee, who had established the enterprise about two years previously. Mr. Collins has built up a large trade and carries a complete and up-to-date line of goods. His store occupies a floor space 24x74, his success being due to his good management and thorough knowledge of the business.
On June 13, 1894, Mr. Collins was married to Miss Grace Canfield, at Whitney. Her father, S. G. Canfield, was a pioneer in Dawes county. Mrs. Collins was teacher prior to her marriage, a graduate of the Chadron
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