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Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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   Dr. Vallette was married to Miss Clarinda A. Walker, of New York state, and they have one son, Ed E., a resident of Alma. For several years Dr. Vallette ran a general store in western Illinois, and his son clerked in this establishment.

   Dr. Vallette is a man of public spirit and has always taken an active part in all affairs of local and state matters, and has been one of those who have helped to make the success of this section of the state. Dr. Vallette owns a farm of one hundred and seventy-eight acres in Eldorado township.



   Alonzo M. Brinckerhoff, a prominent farmer residing on a valuable estate situated in section 21, township 32, range 20, Rock county, Nebraska, was born in Amboy, Lee county, Illinois, July 28, 1862. His father was a native of New York state, being born in Oneida county in 1822, and was of Holland stock, his mother also being of Holland ancestry, the Brinckerhoff family having come to America in about the year 1600. Our subject had one sister, named Sarah, she being born in New York. The family moved to Iowa in 1866, living the last four years in Greene county. They came to Rock county, Nebraska, in 1878, and in the spring of 1879 located on his present farm in Brinckerhoff precinct. In coming from Iowa the daughter and her husband, Mr. John H. Putnam, and several other people drove through with team and wagon from Greene county. When they arrived here his father had three horses, twelve head of cattle and some household goods, which was about the extent of his capital. He took up a tree claim and a homestead and began to break up the farm with a yoke of cattle; and during the first years he had a hard time getting along, owing to the wilderness of the country and the lack of modern farming tools. Neligh, a hundred miles distant, was the nearest milling place, and Atkinson, fifty miles distant, was the nearest city having a grocery store; and they were obliged to make these long trips to supply the family with provisions, taking several days for the journey, camping out at night under the wagon. They remained here increasing their holdings until 1900, when our subject bought the place consisting of five quarter sections of land, and stocked with sixty head of cattle and thirty-five head of horses. It fronts a mile and a half on the Niobrara river, and since purchasing the property he has widened the boundaries until he now owns one thousand acres, a portion of which is river bottom, with two hundred and eighty acres under cultivation and about sixty acres of natural timber. He also has a fine orchard covering five acres of ground, nicely growing, and a complete set of substantial farm buildings. The place now supports about one hundred and forty head of cattle, thirty of them being milch cows, furnishing a goodly supply of cream for shipment each week.

   Mr. Brinckerhoff was married in November 1887, to Miss Almeda Dunnaway, born in Wisconsin in 1868. They have a family of seven children, named as follows: Gilbert, Annie, Mary, Crystal, Alonzo M., the third, John and Almeda. The father, A. M. Brinckerhoff, Sr., passed away from earthly toil in January, 1908.

   Mr. Brinckerhoff, as was his father, is a staunch Democrat, the latter having served as county commissioner of Brown county, when Rock was a part of Brown county. Alonzo M. Brinckerhoff, Sr., was a railroad engineer on the Illinois Central during the war, and later was employed on other parts of the road. Mrs. Brinckerhoff is a member of the Baptist church. Mr. Brinckerhoff is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. A view of the Brinckerhoff home and its picturesque surroundings is shown elsewhere in this volume.

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   John W. O'Mara, an old-time resident of Box Butte county, Nebraska, owns a well improved farm of extensive proportions, and is recognized as one of the substantial farmers of that region. He has passed through the experiences that usually fall to the lot of the pioneers of all new countries, and has been an earnest and faithful citizen and well merits his high station and enviable reputation as a worthy member of his community.

   Mr. O'Mara was born in Warren county, Indiana, in 1862, on a farm. His father, Patrick O'Mara, is a native of Ireland, as was also his mother, who was Mary Bowen, and she died when John was but three years old, since which time his father has been both mother and father to him. Our subject was reared in Indiana, and at the age of twenty, the family came to Illinois, where they lived for some years. In 1885 Mr. O'Mara came to Nebraska with two sons, John and William, locating on section 18, township 27, range 47, and they put up a sod shanty and began farming. They owned a good team and did freighting from Hay Springs. Many times did our

Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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subject camp out at night under his wagon in hauling timber from Pine Ridge, as he was handy to make a living and stick to the homestead until proving up. Our subject got along very nicely and was doing well up to the time the drouths struck that region, and then his crops failed for several seasons and at last he was compelled to go into the Black Hills, where he obtained employment at railroad construction work and followed that for some time. However, he never gave up his farm, and after the good years came on he succeeded in adding many improvements and gradually increased his acreage until he is now proprietor of one thousand acres. At one time he owned two thousand acres, but disposed of part of it at a good profit. His ranch is all fenced and he has erected a good set of buildings has a fine well and windmills. etc. One hundred and sixty acres are under cultivation, and he is engaged in mixed farming and stock raising.

   Mr. O'Mara is numbered among the old settlers of his region, and has aided materially in the progress and growth of that part of the state by always taking an active interest in all local affairs. In political views he is a Democrat.


   Frank M. Bowman, a well known resident of Cherry county, Nebraska, has for the past three years been foreman of the Metz ranch. This is one of the finest equipped ranches in this county, located four miles north of Cody, and is a grand hunting resort, the McGanzer Club House being located on its premises. Mr. Bowman has the handling of the whole place, and is a first class manager and one of the best ranchmen in this section of the country.

   Mr. Bowman is a native of Boone county, Indiana, born June 8, 1860. His father, Dr. W. L. Bowman, of American stock, is a prominent physician at Stanton, Nebraska. His mother, who was Mary Wylie, is a native of Ohio. There was a family of tell children, our subject being the third in order of birth, and he was reared in his home county until seven years of age when his parents came to Stanton county, Nebraska. They were among the pioneer families in the eastern part of the state, and went through the usual pioneer experiences, living in a dugout, and handling ox teams while starting their home in the new country. Our subject and an older brother, Webster B., lived at Alliance for several years. Most of his youth was spent on a farm, and at the age of twenty he started out for himself, going to Colorado, where he spent two years on ranches, then came to Holt county in 1883 and took a homestead and proved up on it.

   He remained on his farm for several years, and went through many hard times in getting started, witnessing the grasshopper raids and losing a lumber of crops from this and other causes, but gradually got ahead and managed to build up a comfortable home. In 1887 he opened up a grocery store at Stanton, then became foreman of Charles H. Chase's home ranch near Stanton, occupying this position for two years. In 1903 he came to Cherry county and began in his present work, where he has made a decided success and proved a most valuable man for the position. In August, 1904, he filed on a Kincaid homestead of six hundred and forty acres in sections 28 and 34, township 35, range 33, on which he proved up in 1909. He has built a substantial house, barn and outbuildings, erected a windmill and made other improvements, which will provide him a comfortable home when he decides to retire to it.

   Mr. Bowman is numbered among the earliest settlers in this region, his parents having driven into the state by team and covered wagon, and he has taken an active part in the development of this region since locating here.

   Mr. Bowman was married April 2, 1893, to Miss Emma Breden, daughter of John and Nancy (Forbes) Breden, the father a minister in the United Brethren church. Three children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Bowman, namely: Ray, Frankie, and May. Mr. Bowman is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Modern Woodmen of America and the Brotherhood of American Yeomen.


   Adam H. Schlasman was born in Lisbon, Linn county, Iowa, in 1855, of which state his father was one of the early pioneer farmers, a man of high character and splendid reputation. The parents were Jonathan and Eve (Banie) Schlasman, natives of Pennsylvania, and were of Dutch descent.

   When our subject was fifteen years old the family moved to Kansas, settling in Pottawatomie county, where they were among the earliest pioneers. Here Adam H. was reared on the farm, assisting his father and receiving advantages for an education. At the age of twenty-five he started out for himself, and, leaving his frontier home, went north to Nebraska, then on to Montana, spending about

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four years at the city of Bozeman. In 1885 he returned to Nebraska and settled in the northwest corner of Blaine county on the North Loup river. He built a sod house and "batched it" for several years, seeing hardships in the way of loss of crops by drouth and hail storms. He now has a lovely home and farm of four hundred and eighty acres and successfully carries it on. He cultivates about two hundred acres of his land, raising good crops and is enjoying a comfortable competency.

   In 1894 Mr. Schlasman was united in marriage with Mrs. Maggie A. McKee, daughter of William F. Reed and Susianna (Shafer) Reed, pioneers of western Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Schlasman have one child, Susianna E., and one step-daughter, Margaret McKee.

   Adam H. Schlasman was among the oldest settlers of this vicinity and has done his part as a leading pioneer in adding to the material advancement of the locality in which he lives. He is a Democrat in politics and has been active in the councils of his party. In 1887 he was elected sheriff of Blaine county and held the office for four years, and carried the first and only prisoner to the penitentiary that was ever sent up from Blaine county. He was a careful and efficient public officer and won universal respect and approval among his constituents for rigid enforcement of the law and the conscientious performance of his duties. He held other offices, among them being that of justice of the peace, which office he now holds. Mr. Schlasman is widely known in the county and is regarded as one of the progressive citizens of the community. He has been constable, road overseer and precinct assessor, and has given good satisfaction as a public official.


   Charles Eppler, one of the most influential and wealthy agriculturists of Perkins county, resides on his elegant farm, his dwelling being located on section 2, township 11, range 38. He has accumulated his fortune by push and energy, and his high station as a farmer and citizen is well deserved. He was born in the town of Decatur, Illinois, on July 8, 1861.

   The father of our subject, Hiram Eppler, was born in Pennsylvania, of German stock, and he married Rose Queary, a native of Illinois, of French descent. The family settled in Illinois as pioneers, and there our subject was raised and educated. At the age of about seventeen years he went into business for himself in the town of Macon. His father died when he was six years old, and from that time on he had to hustle for himself, and early learned the hard lessons of life, in addition to making his own living, being obliged to help support his mother. He first started in the draying business, doing teaming and anything that he could find to do, and continued in this work for several years in Illinois. In 1887 he left there and came to Nebraska, settling on a homestead, on which he erected a sod house, twelve by fourteen feet in size, in which he spent one winter with his family. He had little to start with and necessarily was obliged to go slow in the way of adding improvements to his place, but managed to make a living and get along fairly well up to 1890, when the bad times struck the locality, and he suffered crop losses during '93, '94 and '95, and at the end of that time was one thousand dollars in debt, with a mortgage on his home, and things looked pretty discourageing (sic) to him. The last straw seemed to be a blind horse, and Mr. Eppler fully decided to leave the country and try it somewhere else, so turned his blind horse loose and determined to follow the direction the horse took, After circling around for a little while the animal came back to where Mr. Eppler was waiting and watching, and refused to go away, so this seemed to him to be an indication that he had better remain in the country, which he did, and results have proved that this was a wise move and he has never regretted the action.

   As the years went by conditions improved considerably and he was able to build up his farm in good shape, added substantial buildings, paid off his debts, and prospered in every way. He now has a ranch of one thousand six hundred acres of deeded land, all in first-class order with fences, groves, etc. The place is well stocked with cattle, horses and other live stock, and he is doing splendidly, owning besides his ranching interests a good building on the main street in Grant Village and a substantial bank account.

   In 1883 our subject was married at Decatur, Illinois, to Miss Maggie Plottner, born in the east, of German stock. Five children have blessed their union, named as follows: Fred, Grace, Rilla, and Hiram, besides Beatrice, who died in 1900, aged six years. The others are intelligent, young people, well equipped for life's battle, receiving a good education and thorough training. They have a happy and peaceful home and are popular in their community.

   Mr. Eppler has always done his full share in helping build up and develop the resources of his adopted country, and has been

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