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Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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erty, our subject starting in for himself in 1898, situated on Blue creek, near the home ranch. He left his ranch in 1908 and removed to Oshkosh, Nebraska, where he engaged in the real estate and loan business in partnership with A. B. Wynes, under the firm name of Delatour & Wynes, and they are doing a nice trade in farm lands, etc., throughout their part of the state.

   Mr. Delatour remembers distinctly the killing of practically the last buffalo by the Pine Ridge Agency Indians, which occurred at the Gusher Spring, which lies at the big bend of the Blue creek. Gusher Spring is a natural spring which throws a large volume of water, and is an old camping ground of the Indians. Our subject is a most interesting talker, and can recount many tales of interest regarding life here as he has found it, and of the early days. His father is still living on Blue creek, but the mother died in 1897 at Ogallala. Three brothers also reside in Deuel county, two of whom are ranch owners and the other now holding the office of county clerk of the county.

   Mr. Delatour was married to Minnie B. Taylor, at Ash Hollow, Deuel county, on October 18, 1899. Mrs. Delatour is a native of Nebraska, a typical western woman and of most charming personality. They have two children, Lucy, born April 28, 1901, and John J., born July 3, 1907.


   Among those who have braved the storms of adversity and hardships of the early western days and have passed through many hard and bitter experiences in building up a home for themselves in Nebraska, the gentlman (sic) whose name heads this review stands among the foremost. He is now comfortably situated and has made a success by virtue of honest endeavor and strict attention to his work. Mr. Wohlheter resides in section 12, township 33, range 55, Sioux county.

   Valentine Wohlheter was born in the village of Rencenheim, Germany, in 1838. His father followed farming as a career, and he grew up in his native land, learning to do all kinds of hard farm work as a boy, living at home until he was nineteen years of age, then came to America, landing in New York city in July, 1857. He came west, locating in Illinois. During the second year of the Civil war he enlisted in Company H, One Hundred and Twenty-seventh Volunteer Infantry, was sent south with his regiment, and saw hard service in Tennessee, at Vicksburg and Memphis, was with General Sherman all the way to Washington and took part in the grand review. At the close of the war he returned to Illinois and made that his home for about a year, then went to Elgin, Iowa, and engaged in the mercantile business, operating a general store for thirteen years. He did well and accumulated quite a little property, but decided to try farming, and bought a place and farmed up to 1888, when he left Iowa and came to Nebraska, taking up a homestead, filing on his claim in August of that year. His family joined him in the late fall, and he put up a dwelling, half dugout and board shanty, and they started their home in the wilderness. During the first few years he met with bad luck in the loss of crops, and so gradually worked into the cattle business, doing little farming. His sons worked at railroad construction and on the ranges and helped their parents all they could, and so they managed to get along fairly well, but in eight years only was able to raise two good crops.

   Mr. Wohlheter settled on the place he now occupies in the fall of 1896. Here he has a ranch of one thousand six hundred acres, part of which is owned by his sons, and they have made it one of the best ranches in the region, having it all fenced and fitted with good buildings and improvements of every kind. Hat creek runs through the land, and a fifty-acre tract is under cultivation.

   Mr. Wohlheter was married in 1868, to Miss Caroline Sorg, who was born in France, where her father was a prominent merchant, the family coming to the United States in 1848. The mother, whose maiden name was Fredericka Cochler, was also born and reared in France. The family settled in Iowa, where Mr. Sorg followed farming, also carried on a mercantile business at Elgin, Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Wohlheter are the parents of two children: Leonis, born in 1869, and Eugene, born in 1873, the latter now having charge of the home ranch and assisting his father in its operation. He is married and has two children, Vera and Helen.


   Henry Olson, prominent as an old settler of Deuel county, Nebraska, and a well-to-do farmer and business man, enjoying the highest esteem of his fellowmen, is an energetic man of integrity and progressiveness. He was one of the first settlers on the table land here, and has passed through all the old Nebraska times, helping in the development of its agricultural and commercial resources, deserving a foremost position in the ranks of Deuel county's public-spirited citizens.

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   Mr. Olson was born in Sweden and reared there, coming to the United States in 1881, settling at first in Saunders county, where he spent about four years, then came to Deuel county, landing in this region on the tenth of May, 1883. He at once filed on a homestead on section 29, township 14, range 44, proving up on a quarter section, later bought an additional quarter in the locality, now owning in all nearly four hundred acres, of which about one-half is devoted to farming, raising small rain, etc. He has a number of good horses, and has a well equipped farm, with every convenience, having two complete sets of farm buildings, also wells, fences, etc. When a youth in Sweden our subject learned the carpenters' and builders' trade, and since coming to this country has worked considerably in this line. He has erected many houses in the county, and helped to build some of the first dwellings in Chappell, when that town was started.

   While still living in Sweden, Mr. Olson was married to Miss Bento North, their marriage occurring on March 5, 1880, and together they came to the new world to establish a home. To them were born two children, Alta, who married James Maffat, now living on section 30, township 14, range 44, their farm joining Mrs. Maffat's father's place. They have one child, Harold, a lad of two years. One son, Edward Wilhelm Olson, is living at home and assists his father in carrying on the farm. Mrs. Olson died on the homestead on January 27, 1893, and her death was a deep loss to her family and friends, who esteemed her immeasurably as a model wife and mother. Mr. Olson has seen much of the hard side of life on the western plains, but has worked faithfully and has reaped a fitting reward for his labors in the accumulation of a comfortable property, all of which has been gained through his honesty and individual efforts. A portrait of Mr. Olson will be found elsewhere in this work.

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   One of the prominent and successful agriculturists of Keya Paha county who came to this section when the country was in the first stages of its development, and who has watched its growth from its early days, is to be found in the person of William A. Connell. He resides on section 28, township 33, range 17, where he has built up a pleasant and comfortable home.

   Mr. Connell was born in St. Louis, Missouri, August 23, 1851. He is a son of William F. Connell, one of the best known shorthand reporters in that city, and a native of Washington City, born of Irish-American stock. The mother of our subject, Sarah Hopkins, was a Virginian, and he is the only child of his parents. He was raised and educated in Washington until nine years of age, then the family moved to Mineral Point, Wisconsin, where he grew up and at the age of fifteen went to the pine woods and followed the lumbering business for nine years. While working at that he was severely injured and was obliged to quit the business, so took up farming, going to Shelby county, Iowa. There be took an eighty acre farm and operated it for four years, at which time he wandered to Texas and traveled all over that country, returning north, and settling in Nebraska, in 1883. He located in Keya Paha county, close to the Niobrara river, and began building up a farm. His first house was a sod shanty, and he lived in this for twelve years. He had a hard time in getting started, and suffered much loss during the dry years, and was hailed out several times. For seven years his crops were failures nearly all the time, and when not a total loss he only secured enough to enable him to make a scanty living He stuck to his farm, however, and when the better times came, gradually made improvements and got into stock raising, which he found more profitable than farming at that time. He purchased his present home in 1905, comprising one thousand four hundred sixty-eight acres, part of which lies along the river, and on this he has put up good buildings on the "table" one mile from the river and has made it a very valuable property.

   In the year after coming to Keya Paha county, Mr. Connell was married to Miss Floretta F. Lowe, born in Middlebury, Wisconsin, a daughter of Henry and Ann (Adams) Lowe, the former a native of England and the latter of Prince Edward's Island. Her, parents were old settlers in this county. From this marriage six children resulted, namely: Frank C., Jessie F., Robert Harrison, Lorena, Charles H. and William A. R., all of whom are living, and the family is highly esteemed in the community.

   Mr. Connell is a Republican and was elected county commissioner in 1891, in 1903 and again in 1906, serving in that capacity at the present time. He is a member of the Royal Highlanders at Brocksburg.


   George M. Anderson, who was for three years the president of the Newport and Mariaville Telephone Company, an institution organized and very largely built by him, is one of the most representative farmers of Kirkwood precinct, Rock county, Nebraska, and as a long

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and faithful worker in the interests of the Democratic party has many friends over the state.

   Mr. Anderson was born on a farm in Athens county, Ohio, January 29, 1859, and was reared to an agricultural life, to which his parents; Humphrey and Frances (Brown) Anderson, were also born and bred. Of the children born to his parents, he is the eldest of three who are now living. He has three half brothers. Humphrey Anderson, the father, died September 1, 1906, at his home in Missouri. When George M. Anderson had reached the age of twenty-three years he left his Ohio home and was engaged in farming for about four years in Guthrie county, Iowa, where considerable success attended his efforts. He was married in Ohio, January 5, 1881, to Miss Lydia Daniels, whose parents were English born and bred. Eight children have come to bless this union: Herbert, Carl and Harl, twins; Roscoe, Eugene, Arthur, Chester and Marcus. The mother died October 7, 1907, leaving the family disconsolate.

   In 1886 the Andersons moved still farther to the west, and journeyed from their Iowa home to a new location in Keya Paha county, Nebraska, being twenty days on the way, and bringing with them seven head of cattle. Making a pre-emption settlement on what seemed a desirable location, they put up a sod house, in which they were at home for the ensuing four years. In 1891 Mr. Anderson was attracted by the rush to South Dakota, and thought he might do well there, as it seemed to promise relief from some of the troubles that attended him in Keya Paha county. Accordingly he went to Gregory county, South Dakota, where he remained until 1895, but the loss of three successive crops by repeated drouths proved too much for his endurance, and he returned to this state, having hardly more with which to start anew than his unbroken courage and good strong arms. After making his land entries, and building a sod house, he found himself with less than ten dollars, and winter rapidly advancing. That fall he worked for fifty cents a day and was glad to secure employment even at that low wage. The passing of the years has worked him well, and today he is reckoned among the most solid and substantial citizens of the county. In 1895 he bought his present farm, and today is the proprietor of a landed estate consisting of five hundred and sixty acres, on which he has erected good buildings and has secured an ample supply of farm machinery. A view of the residence with its accompanying buildings is to be found on another page.

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     He is working somewhat from an exclusive grain farming to stock raising as well, and is seeking to develop diversified interests, believing the farmer best off who can turn in the most directions to meet the fluctuations of a varying market. He has served his precinct as assessor for four years; is a member of the Independent Order of Odd fellows of Newport and the Ancient Order of United Woodmen of Mariaville, in which he is financier and his management of the funds of the order is highly praised by his brother workmen.

   Among the leading citizens of Cherry county, Nebraska, the gentleman herein named occupies a prominent place. Mr. Green resides in section 27, township 32, range 39, where he has a fine farm and pleasant home.

   Mr. Green was born in Lincoln county, Ohio, May 29, 1846. His father, George W. Green, was a Virginian, a farmer by occupation, and in 1851 moved to Champaign county, Illinois, where he lived for twelve years with his family, consisting of his wife and eight children, of whom our subject is the seventh in order of birth. There he was reared and educated, coming to Nebraska with his parents in 1864, where they took no a homestead in Sarpy, about twenty-five miles southwest of Omaha. When Theodore was eighteen years of age he started out for himself, following farm work part of the time and learned blacksmithing at St. Joseph, later taking up the machinists' and finally the carpenters' trade. In 1870 he rented land and opened a farm for himself in Sarpy county, remaining on it for six years, then went to California, working on the Petrie ranch for five years. At the end of that time he returned to Sarpy county, again taking a farm, working as a carpenter part of the time, and in 1885 moved to Cherry county, locating eight miles east of Gordon. He lived on that place for two years and a half, then moved to another place two miles east of that place, where he remained for a short time. Four years were spent in Douglas county and in Omaha and then he returned to this locality, settling on his second homestead, but he could not make a living during the dry years, so changed his filing for land situated on Rice creek. He later sold that and bought land near, and in 1904 took up his present place of six hundred and forty acres, one-fourth of which is deeded land. This is partly farming land, with plenty of grazing and hay land. He cuts about fifty tons of hay each season, and engages principally in farming, although he keeps a large bunch of horses.

   Mr. Green was married February 5, 1887, to Miss Cynthia Crabtree, born in Livingston county, Illinois, in 1867. She is a daughter of John M. Crabtree, who served as lieutenant in the

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