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Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Chapman, named as follows: John, Victor, Margaret, James, Annie, Paul, Earl and Bessie

     Mr. Chapman helped to build up the schools in his locality and did his share in the upbuilding of this region since coming here. Politically he is a Republican.



     Among the most successful ranch enterprises of Cherry county none has merited a wider reputation that that (sic) known in local parlance as the "The Churn." The ranch house is situated on section 5, township 32, range 36, and is without doubt one of the largest and finest dwellings in the ranch region of western Nebraska. It was erected in 1902, is two stories high, containing fourteen rooms, including a large bath-room with running water to supply domestic needs. The barn is also one of the largest in the range country, and is but one of a number of large buildings and sheds with which the place is equipped. An elevated reservoir, served by its own windmill, gives water pressure sufficient to throw a stream above the house in case of fire. There is shed room for the sheltering of three thousand head of stock, with convenient corrals surrounding, and all supplied with an abundance of good water. Not the least attractive feature of the ranch is the groves, five in number, which have attained a growth far beyond the usual plantings in the west. There are sixteen wells and windmills on the place affording an abundance of good water. The ranch contains something over four thousand acres, much of which is fine hay land with five hundred acres seeded to alfalfa, which in this region attains luxurious growth. There are at all times about two thousand head of cattle and two hundred head of horses on the place, all of a high grade of breeding. The company that established this ranch was organized January 1st, 1886, consisting of Shadbolt, Fleischman, Trowbridge & Gates, the latter of whom sold out to his three partners. Later Trowbridge sold to Hubert Shadbolt (brother of George E. Shadbolt), and the firm name was then changed to Shadbolt Bros. & Fleischman. William Fleischman still retaining his interest throughout the different changes of ownership.

     The Shadbolt brothers were born in Sheboygan county, Wisconsin, Hubert, the elder, now residing at Emmetsburg, Iowa. He left home to make his own way in life at the age of sixteen, while George lived with his parents until completing his eighteenth year. After spending four years in Colorado, mostly following the range, he travelled (sic) as far west at Oregon, looking the country over for a good location for an enterprise such as they have since organized, and finding nothing in the far west seemingly superior to Nebraska, came to Cherry county in 1886 and became a partner in organizing the ranch afterwards known as "The Churn."

     William Fleischman is a native of Germany, after immigration lived in Wisconsin a few years prior to joining the company organizing "The Churn," which he did January 1st, 1886.

     Mr. George E. Shadbolt was married on December 14th, 1904, to Miss Anna Thompson. They have two daughters, Viola Theresa and Ella Leona.

     The hospitality of "The Churn" is proverbial. Everywhere western hospitality is cordial, but that dispensed at the above ranch is the essence of the best, it being made the stopping place of freighters and travellers (sic) going to or from the railroad stations, as well as for those passing through the region east or west. An interesting picture of the "Church Ranch" property will be found on another page of this volume.

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     Clarence E. Park, who, within the past several years has acquired a valuable estate in section 6, township 34, range 42, is a gentleman of rare intelligence and much enterprise, and a worthy and highly esteemed resident of Sheridan county. Since coming to this section he has met with some discouragements in the way of financial losses, but in the main has prospered and is now recognized as one of the substantial agriculturists of his community,

     Mr. Park was born in Sarpy county, Nebraska, in 1869. His father, Gilbert G. Park, was a native of Pennsylvania, farmer by occupation, and came west, settling in Nebraska, in 1885, and located in Sheridan county, where he died in 1889, leaving a family of five children, of whom our subject was the third member in order of birth. He was raised on his father's farm in Sarpy county and in Omaha City while a youngster, but since fifteen years of age his life has been spent in Sheridan county. When he reached the age of twenty years he started out for himself, working out on a ranch in the vicinity of his home up to 1895, when he located on a homestead containing eighty acres of land in 1896 and later took an additional one hundred and sixty acres under the Kincaid act, and began to establish a farm and home. During the first years on his father's farm the drouth (sic) caused him severe

Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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losses to crops, and he had a hard time in keeping up, but managed to get along and gradually conditions grew better and he was able to save a little money and add to his property. He now owns nine hundred and sixty acres of good land, deeded property, and of this he has fifty acres cultivated and about eight acres in alfalfa. He runs quite a bunch of stock, and now has seventy-five head on his place.

     Mr. Park was married in 1891 to Miss Elizabeth C. Margrave, a native of Richardson county, Nebraska. Her father, Charles T. Margrave, is a farmer, who was born in Iowa and who has followed ranching since coming to Sheridan county, Nebraska. He now resides in this county, having located here in 1885 with his wife and three children, Elizabeth being the eldest. Mr. and Mrs. Park have a family of five children, named as follows: Beth, Sarah, Margaret, Jeannette and Charles, all born and raised in this county.

     Mr. Park devotes his entire time and energy to the improvement and building up of his home and farm, and has never sought public preferment. He is a strong Prohibitionist and has never voted any other ticket.



     James H. Wiker, an old timer in western Nebraska, now living in Davison precinct, Cheyenne county, was born in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, December 11th, 1849. He was one of a family of twelve children, of whom ten are still living, he being the third in order of birth. The family moved to Muscatine county, Iowa, in 1858, where our subject was raised and educated, following farming during his boyhood.

     In the spring of 1887 he came to Cheyenne county, bought one hundred and sixty acres of railroad land and began stock raising. He then went to Omaha and lived for eight years, employed at the stock yards and at carpentry, and at the end of that time, returned to Cheyenne county, filing on a homestead on section 6, township 16, range 50, now being proprietor of half a section of good farming and ranch land. He had about one hundred and fifty acres cultivated, and runs from fifty to seventy-five head of cattle and twenty-five horses. His place is well improved with good buildings and fences, well supplied with water, and altogether is one of the valuable estates in the county.

     Mr. Wiker was married on January 27, 1877, in Muscatine county, Iowa, to Miss Barbara A. Smith, who is a native of the state of Ohio. They are the parents of one child, William H. Wiker, born in December, 1879, now living at Spaulding, Nebraska, where he is engaged in the jewelry business.

     In political sentiment Mr. Wiker is a staunch Republican and takes a deep interest in county, state and national affairs. He is prominent in local and school matters, serving at present as moderator of district No. 61.



     Charles L. Vaught is a native of Iowa, and was born on a farm in Jefferson county in 1861. His father, Jacob, was a native of Indiana and served as a veteran in the Civil war. The mother, Nancy Dole, was American born, but was of Dutch descent.

     Our subject was reared in Iowa, in Jefferson and Jasper counties on a farm, assisting his father. He left home in 1883 and for a year worked out. Then in the spring of 1884, he came to Plum creek in Nebraska, on the Union Pacific Railroad, and from there he drove over to the Middle Loup river. He and a partner, who was with him, bought a ranch and our subject located a pre-emption claim and a tree claim west of Halsey, Nebraska. Then he worked for what is familiarly called a "cow outfit" for five years, roughing it and camping out with the cow boys. He was on the range all over western Nebraska, to Alliance on the west, and over Cherry county. He helped to organize Blaine county and took a leading part in the affairs of the early days. He located on his present ranch in 1891 and now has four hundred acres thoroughly improved. On the farm adjoining stands an old log house, built in 1872, one of the landmarks of the pioneer times. Our subject saw many hardships during his pioneer life and "batched" it for a number of years and was accustomed to privations of all kinds.

     Charles L. Vaught was married December 12, 1893, to Carrie Perkins, daughter of Daniel Perkins. She was born in the state of Iowa. At the age of eight came to South Dakota with her parents, stayed one year, then moved to Custer county, Nebraska, remained there four years, then moved to Thomas county in 1887.

     Mr. Vaught has a home to be proud of his fine farm lies along the Middle Loup river, with plenty of water, grazing land and a soil that will raise splendid crops. He has plenty of timber for all purposes and has his farm fenced and cross-fenced in excellent shape. In spite of hard times and crop losses and the burning of two hundred tons of hay one season, and many other setbacks that came to him during these years, Mr. Vaught has maintained a

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