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and was the first man to receive a patent for land issued in the county. He now has a ranch of one thousand two hundred and eighty acres, all deeded land, and is engaged in cattle raising, and deals extensively in hay, buying and shipping it into the Black Hills. He has a fine irrigation ditch from the Niobrara river, and irrigates five hundred acres of hay land. Everything is kept in the best possible order on his ranch, and he has one of the valuable estates in his locality, and richly deserves the success which has come to him through his perseverance and endeavors. The name of his ranch where he resides is River Side ranch, Marsland postoffice and station.

     Mr. McLaughlin was married in 1877 to Miss Mary Noel, born in Iowa, of American stock, and daughter of John and Rachel (Goldsmith) Noel. They have two children, Lucy M. and Hobart L.

     In political sentiment our subject leans toward the Republicans. On another page will be found a picture of Mr. McLaughlin and family.

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     Henry Fliniaux, now a resident of Cherry county, Nebraska, where his home is found in section 24, township 33, and range 28, is, as his name indicates, a native of France, where he was born in the village of Ephy, Department of Sonne, May 6, 1858. His father, Henry, Sr., was cashier and bookkeeper in a bank in his native land, and came to this country for the first time in 1847, remaining six years, when he returned to France. In the fall of 1862 he brought his family to the United States, sailing from Havre on the steamship Bavaria, landing in New York after a voyage of nineteen days. He settled at Highland, Madison county, Illinois, in a settlement of French and Switzers, where he remained five years. His wife, the mother of the subject of this sketch, was Eliza Longatte. She was also of pure French blood and the entire family is a notable embodiment of the best traits and characteristics of their race and blood.

      Henry Fliniaux spent the first five years in Madison county, and was then taken by his parents into Cass county, Iowa, where they resided for two years, after which they found a bome in Gentry county, Missouri, where our subject remained until he had reached early manhood.

     Mr. Fliniaux started for himself in 1885, and the year following made a bomestead entry of a fine place on Gordon's creek in Cherry county. His sister also made a homestead entry at the same time on Gordon's creek, and the two lived many years in a soil shanty. Mr. Fliniaux had a team of borses with which he traveled thirty miles to and fro, between the ranch and Valentine, then his market town. He early began in the stock business, and increased his real estate as rapidly as possible until he now owns a ranch consisting of sixteen hundred and eighty acres of very desirable land. The farm on which he now makes his home was bought by him in the spring of 1903, and here he established his bome the following year. The father took a bomestead on sections 13 and 24, township 33, range 28, where he died May 9, 1905. The mother and sister make their bome with Henry Fliniaux and the three are very closely associated in all business matters,

     Mr. Fliniaux is making a reputation as a borticulturist of much success. On his land he has over twelve hundred fruit bearing trees, and his experiences in this line are of great value to the county, where his orchard is known as one of the very finest in the entire region.

     Mr. Fliniaux is a philosophical Socialist, but has never taken a very active part in politics. He has shared in the dangers and excitements of frontier life, and has many times been called on to fight desperately against the prairie fires. In 1887 he was entirely burned out by one that came down on him with the wings of the wind. The family are communicants of the Catholic church.


     The gentleman whose name appears at the head of this review is essentially a self-made man, starting for himself at the age of twenty-three years. He has become intimately identified with the early life of the community and is counted as one of the reliable old settlers. He located his bomestead and started on the lowest round of the ladder in 1885, breaking land for fifty cents an acre and husking corn for two and a half cents a bushel in order to earn money to complete his filings. He built a sod bouse and lived in it for one year, "batching it" during that time.

     Like all pioneers Mr. Foster had to pass through the years of drouth, and the year 1894 witnessed such total failure that many had to find work elsewhere. Mr. Foster went to Rock county, where he put up hay and hauled cream and engaged in various enterprises in order to make money for his farm improvements. Better years came and success at farming became assured. Now the subject of

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our sketch has an excellently improved farm of eight hundred acres, with about one hundred and fifteen acres under cultivation. On the place are good buildings, well and windmill, fences and general and useful improvements of all kinds.

     Mr. Foster claims Iowa as the state of his nativity, his birth occurring in Casey in the year 1874. His father, Thomas Foster, was a painter by trade, and traveled widely in America. having driven stage in California in as early a day as 1848. Frank E. Foster's mother was Lois Chamberlain before marriage. The father died in Iowa and the mother and brother came to Nebraska in about 1885. The mother died in Nebraska July 14, 1900.

     The marriage of Frank E. Foster and Miss Myrtle Brown, of Milbourne, Nebraska, was celebrated February 26, 1900. She was the daughter of Charles Brown, an old settler of Nebraska--his death occurred in Custer county. Mr. and Mrs. Foster have been blessed with three children, namely: Willie, Ora and Mabel.

     Frank E. Foster has at all times been deeply interested in the social and business interests of the community. He has participated in all matters tending for the general betterment of affairs and especially in educational matters. He is progressive and resourceful and is respected for these qualities. He taught the second term of school in the Vanderveen district, and this was the first regular paid term of the public school. He received eighteen dollars per month for the four months' term and had to discount the warrants ten per cent, in order to get the money.


     John Lawrence, a prominent pioneer of Box Butte county, resides in section 21, township 26, range 47, where he enjoys a comfortable bome and has gained the esteem and confidence of his fellowmen. He has endured many hardships to secure this fine property and can recount many thrilling experiences connected with his early settlement in this region.

      Mr. Lawrence was born in Wales, England, in 1845, the son of John Lawrence, who was a day laborer all his life in that country. He was reared in his native county until he reached the age of twenty years, following the occupation of a farm laborer there. In 1865 he left England and came to the United States and after landing in New York went to Johnstown, Pennsylvania, where he obtained employment in the coal mines and worked as a miner for two years. He then went to Indiana and entered the coal mines, where he spent seven or eight years, and from there came west to Iowa, and again worked as a miner in Monroe county, remaining there up to the spring of 1887, then came to Nebraska and settled in Box Butte county. He filed on a bomestead in section 21, township 26, range 47, and after spending a year on the place and getting it started, he sent for his family to join him. He had erected a sod house and started to improve his farm, doing all his work of breaking, etc., with a team of mules, starting with practically no capital, and obliged to work out in the vicinity to make a living. During the first year or so he went to work in the coal mines of Wyoming, and one winter, during the month of February, 1891, while he was away from his home, a severe snow storm swept the vicinity of his farm, and the snow was so deep that his house was entirely snowed under, and his wife and children were compelled to break through the window to get outside and make a hole through the snow to the barn. They had a hard time to get enough fuel to keep warm and had to chop up the partition boards and even the chairs to make a fire and keep from freezing to death. When they finally succeeded in digging a road to the barn the snow was piled against the building so high that they had to dig a hole through the bank to get to the door.

     During the first few years Mr. Lawrence was located in this county he succeeded in raising fair crops, but when the dry years struck the locality he had a hard time to get along and make a living at farming, so started in the stock business, raising cattle and at first operated on a small scale but gradually branched out and finally was able to do pretty well. He was constantly improving his place and added to his original homestead, until he is now proprietor of eight hundred acres, using it mostly as a ranch, cultivating only about one hundred acres, but raises good crops of small grains, potatoes, etc.

     Mr. Lawrence was married in 1867 while living in Pennsylvania, taking as his wife Mary Ann Davis, also a native of Wales, England. Mrs. Lawrence was a daughter of Thomas and Jane (Price) Davis, the father a miner in England, and the whole family came to America in 1863, settling in Stark county, Ohio, where Mrs. Lawrence was raised. Our subject has a family of four children, namely: John R., born April 11, 1873; Thomas J., born September 18, 1877; William B., born April 17, 1883, and Daniel, born May 30, 1888.

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     Mr. Lawrence is active in local political affairs, and is one of the leading men and worthy citizens of his community. He has served on the school board in his district for many years.


     Carl Hahn, one of the early settlers in western Nebraska, who foresaw the prosperity and opportunities of that region in its early days, and remained to enjoy the results of many years of labor here, is one of the most highly esteemed residents of Sheridan county. He is the owner of a valuable estate in township 28, range 45, and farms on an extensive scale.

     Mr. Hahn is a native of Loraine county, Ohio, born in 1855. When he was six months old his parents moved to Iowa, locating on a farm there, where our subject, together with eleven brothers and sisters, were raised and educated. His father, Peter Hahn, was born in Germany and came to America at the age of eight years, his parents locating in Ohio, and in 1856 he moved to Iowa with his family, his wife's death occurring there in 1880. Our subject commenced to make his own way in the world at the age of twenty-two years, obtaining employment on farms, working by the month or day for nine years. In 1886 he moved to this locality with his parents, and took up a homestead for himself in section 20, township 28, range 45, which he still occupies. Here he built a comfortable dwelling place, consisting of a dugout and sod house in which he lived for two years, then erected a better sod house. He "batched it" for five years, and began building up his farm. When he landed here he brought a team and an old wagon with him, and the following spring broke land and put in some sod corn, the patch containing about ten acres.

      During the first years he got fair crops, and had just got nicely started when the dry years hit him, and as he was depending wholly on his crops for a living he had a hard time to get along. He had two cows, and some years his crops failed so that he was unable to get enough from them to pay for having it threshed, and not enough to feed his stock. He never bought any seed, but only sowed what he had, and got along as best he could. He did everything he could to keep going, and one whole winter made baskets and sold them to support his family. He often felt very discouraged and determined to leave, but stuck to it, as he did not want to leave the place after being on it for so long, so stayed on and when the better years came along and his crops were good, he was glad he had persevered in his undertaking. He knows he could not have done as well anywhere else, as he started out with practically no capital at all, and was even obliged to borrow money when he filed on his land. He now owns a tract of eight hundred acres of good land, and farms about one hundred acres of this, using most of the produce on his place to feed his stock, of which he has about forty-five or fifty head. His ranch is all fenced and well improved with good buildings, etc., and he is proud of the fact that he owes no man a dollar.

     Mr. Hahn was married in 1882 to Miss Minnie Bridenstein, born and raised in Iowa. They had one child which died in infancy, and in 1885 Mr. Hahn suffered a sad loss in the death of his wife. He was married again in 1892, to Miss Elizabeth Blickenstaff, daughter of Jacob Blickenstaff, of Pennsylvania Dutch stock, born and raised in Indiana, who came to Nebraska in 1888 and settled on a farm there, being among the early settlers in this section. Mr. and Mrs. Hahn have a family of six children, named as follows: Christian N., Levi A., Clara V., Carl E., Anna E., and a baby as yet not named.

     Mr. Hahn's postoffice address is Schill, and his nearest school is within two miles of his farm. He is always interested in local affairs that tend to the betterment of conditions in his locality, and has held local office at different times. Politically he is not a party man, but votes for the best man running.

     An interesting picture of Mr. Hahn's family as well as the ranch residence will be found on another page of this work.

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     Arthur Cutler, an old settler of Sheridan county, Nebraska. is recognized as one of the prosperous and substantial agriculturists of the locality in which he resides. His home is in section 11, township 33, range 43, and he is widely and favorably known as a good business man and worthy citizen.

     Mr. Cutler was born in Richardson county, Nebraska, January 10, 1866. His father, H. C. Cutler, was born in New York state, and during the war was a member of the Forty-fourth Illinois Regiment, and saw hard service as a soldier.

     At the age of sixteen years our subject began farming and followed this work, and as his father's health failed he was obliged to work out by the month to help support the family. He spent four years in Kansas on

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ranches and doing all kinds of labor, and in the fall of 1887 came to Sheridan county, Nebraska, and filed on a tract of land. He settled on this the following spring, remaining there for twelve years and since that time has never left the locality, this farm being situated only nine miles north of where he now lives. He built a sod house on the land and in this he "batched it" for a number of years, building up his farm and getting a start. After leaving this place he worked out on different farms for some years, and in 1904 bought his present home of one hundred and sixty acres, this place being quite well improved when he purchased it. It was during the time he was in Sheridan county that the dry years came on and ruined all his crops, and here he saw his hardest times. He lived only three-quarters of a mile from the state line while the Indian war was in progress, but never left his farm, although there was great danger in remaining. This and other pioneer hardships were all he cared for and he is glad these times are past. In the beginning of his residence here he had a hard time to prove up on his homestead. He had nothing to start with, and was obliged to buy all of his machinery with money which he earned by working out on farms by the month, and also hauling timber to Pine Ridge Agency.

     In 1897 Mr. Cutler was married to Miss Laura C. Thacker, born in Missouri in 1872. Her father, Charles W. Thacker, was a native of Kentucky, and now resides in Montana. Mr. and Mrs. Cutler have two children, namely Cecil, an adopted child born in 1894, and Roy, born in 1905. In political sentiment he is a Republican, but always votes for the best man on the ticket, regardless of party.


     A. J. Deets, a well-known resident of Center township, Phelps county. Nebraska. enjoys a comfortable home and the esteem and respect of his fellowmen.

     Mr. Deets was born in 1860. In 1882 he left Pennsylvania and came to Nebraska, locating in Buffalo county, north of Kearney, and there engaged in the grain and hog business. In 1896 he first landed in Phelps county, and for nine years managed the Norris ranch, comprising eight hundred acres, located in Anderson township, and in addition to this he was postmaster and storekeeper at Haydon. Four hundred acres of this ranch was cultivated, and the balance in pasture. He generally planted two hundred acres to wheat and oats, and two hundred acres in corn, and from this his crop of wheat averaged thirty bushels, and corn and oats up to fifty bushels per acre. On the pasture land he had from one hundred to two hundred Hereford cattle, and about three hundred Poland China hogs, and also twenty horses. He was very successful in both farming and stock raising, and when he left this ranch the horses which he sold brought him one thousand six hundred dollars. He now owns a good farm of one hundred and sixty acres in Centre township, section 12, on the Anderson township line, and has built a nice, substantial farm house, fine barns and other buildings. He has a large building used for sheltering hogs, and makes specialty of raising these animals. He has a drove of over forty pure bred Poland Chinas and two hundred graded hogs, and finds this line very profitable. He also has one hundred high grade Hereford cattle, and some fine Percheron horses and colts. He shows a marked preference for Poland China hogs and Hereford cattle, as they mature and are fit for market earlier than other grades. He thinks that Nebraska is one of the best states in the Union for mixed farming and stock raising, as the climate and conditions here are well adapted to their perfect development.

     He has three brothers also living in this state, L. S. Deets, of Kearney, J. H. Deets, and H. A. Deets, also of Kearney.

     Mr. Deets was married in 1886 to Miss Carrie Day, daughter of M. Day, a pioneer settler of Buffalo county, Nebraska. One child has blessed their union, a daughter, named Ozella.


     Michael Windsheimer, who enjoys the distinction of being one of the leading old timers of Cheyenne county. Nebraska, is a gentleman of exceptional business ability and integrity, and although since coming to this section has suffered many losses financially, has prospered to a remarkable extent and is now proprietor of a flue estate in Lodgepole precinct. He is prominent in his community, taking an active part in its advancement in every way, and well deserves his success and high standing.

     Mr. Windsheimer was born in the village of Bromholzheim, Wertemberg, Germany, December 2, 1856. He is the eldest of three children in his father's family, and grew to manhood on a farm there. His father, Leonhard, is still living in that country, but the mother is dead. Our subject came to America in 1882. sailing from Bremen Haven on the ''Main'' on the last day of May, landing on June 9. He went direct to Boone county, Iowa. After spending about four years in that

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county he came to Cheyenne county, arriving here in the spring of 1886, and at once filed on a homestead on section 6, taking one hundred and sixty acres, which is his present farm. He now has three hundred and twenty acres, while a quarter section additional is owned by his wife; it is a very nice property, with one hundred and twenty acres devoted to farming and the balance in hay land and pasture for one hundred and twenty head of cattle and a small bunch of horses. He has a complete set of substantial farm buildings and every improvement in the way of machinery, etc., also a good supply of water the year around for his stock and all domestic purposes. The place is also well supplied with natural timber.

     Mr. Windsheimer was married at Boone, Iowa, November 7, 1883, to Miss Maggie Lang, who was born in Germany and came to this country in the early part of that year (1883). They have a family of eight children, namely: Mary, wife of Rolla Porter, of Lusk, Wyoming; Minnie, William, Frederick, Leonhard, Emma, John L. and Annie; all of whom are living at home. Mrs. Windsheimer's parents are both dead. The family have a substantial stone dwelling, and are among the well liked residents of their community; their home is one of the most hospitable to be found in many days' travel. All are members of and regular attendants of the German Lutheran church at Weyerts.

     Politically Mr. Windsheimer is a Republican.


     Lee Garner, a prominent old-timer of Dawes county, now living in Whitney, where he is engaged in the general merchandise business, is one of the leading pioneers of this locality.

      Mr. Garner is a native of Wayne county, Illinois, born in 1839 on a farm. His parents were both of American blood, the father an early settler in eastern Nebraska, coming here with his family in 1854 and locating in Dakota county, where he died in 1891. Our subject grew up in Dakota county, where he found plenty of hard work to do in building up the home farm with his parents, and attended the country schools, going through the usual pioneer experiences in his boyhood days. In 1859 he started out for himself, and was appointed superintendent of the first freighting outfit from Council Bluffs, Iowa, to Denver, running that up to 1861, crossing the plains several times with teams, camping out on the ground at night and meeting with many exciting adventures. In 1861 he enlisted in Company I, First Nebraska Volunteers, and the regiment was ordered south but only remained a short time, most of their service consisting in watching the Indians on the plains. He was in the service for two years.

     After leaving the army he returned to Dakota county and followed farming, purchasing a farm of his own, and this place is now worth at least one hundred and twenty-five dollars per acre. He came to Cedar county about 1870, and was among the early settlers in that section, and engaged in the stock and mixed farming business, later going into the mercantile business at Coleridge, when that town was first started. He only ran the store a short time, then moved to Dawes county, teaming from Valentine, making several trips from that place, also from Sidney, bringing in a stock of merchandise and opened a store in old Dawes City. In 1886, when the railroad came to Whitney, Mr. Garner located here, building the first hotel in the town, which he ran for almost twenty years, and was well known far and near by the residents of this section and travelers who came through the country. In 1900 Mr. Garner opened a store, dealing in general merchandise and still operates this business. For some time he was engaged in running a store and boarding house in the old town of Chadron, where he put up a building for the purpose.

     In 1867 our subject was united in marriage to Miss Mary Wright, daughter of John and Elizabeth Barker Wright, early settlers in Dakota county, Nebraska, and who were both born and raised in England.

     Mr. Garner has done his full share in the building up and developing of the section in which he located, and is a representative pioneer of the country. He is a Democrat in politics.


     Henry C. Stone, an experienced farmer, resides in Brown county, on Plum creek, north of Johnstown, where he has a fine tract of land and enjoys an enviable reputation as a worthy citizen.

     Mr. Stone is a native of Wright county, Iowa, born December 4, 1857. His father, Norman Stone, was a farmer and old settler in Pawnee county, Nebraska, coming to that locality in 1867, and in 1883 moved to Brown county. where he died in 1890. Our subject is the eldest in a family of eleven children, and was reared in Pawnee county, where he grew up accustomed to all kinds of hard work, as he was obliged to assist his father and broth-

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ers in the work of carrying on their farm. He grew to manhood on the frontier, where the early settlers experienced many hardships and privations. At that time there were no rail roads through this region, and journeys for family supplies had to be made at a great risk, traveling many miles to the nearest trading-post, through a rough and wild country, and many were the exciting times these pioneers saw through encounters with Indians who roamed the country, and also the wild beasts which at that time abounded in this section.

     In 1882 Mr. Stone left his father's home in Pawnee county and came to Brown county, driving the entire distance with a team and covered wagon. The trip took eight days, and was a tedious time to the travelers. He located on a pre-emption in section 1, township 31, range 23, and began to improve his property, building a log house and breaking up sod for crops. He had a team of horses and five dollars in money when he began here, his only capital besides his brawn and brain.

     During the first years he met with many disappointments, losing two crops in succession through the drouths and two by hailstorms. He remained on this farm for three years, then went to Almira on the North Loup, pursuing his trade of blacksmith for three years. Returning, he lived on his father's place, where he farmed for a few years, working rented land in addition. In 1896 he took his present homestead in section 1, township 31, range 23, adjoining his preemption land, and erected a dwelling, blacksmith shop, barns and other buildings. This place, containing six hundred and forty acres, is located on Plum creek, and is well supplied with natural timber and plenty of water. He has cleared a large part of the land and raises good crops on his farm every year. He has a fine orchard of one hundred and fifty trees on Plum creek, which is one of the best in the neighborhood, and of this he is very proud..

      Mr. Stone was married January 29, 1883, to Miss Mary White, a native of Polk county, Iowa. Mrs. Stone is a daughter of Isaac and Nancy (Luther) White, who settled in Pawnee county in 1880. Twelve children have resulted from this union: Dora E.. wife of Frank Jenkins; Cora (deceased); Clara, wife of Theodore Petty; Chas. E.; Mary E., who married James Gallagher; Norman H.; Amos Walter.; Alice L.; Ida C.; Laura A.: Carrie E. (deceased) and one that died in infancy, all of whom were born in Brown county.

     The family is highly esteemed in this locality, and among the worthy citizens who have aided in the advancement of conditions of this section. Politically Mr. Stone is a Socialist.


     Nels Nelson, one of the pioneer agriculturists of Deuel county, Nebraska, holds a prominent place as a man of intelligence and sterling citizenship. He came to the region during its earliest settlement, and has prospered to a marked degree, his enterprising nature and good business judgment placing him among the foremost farmers of his community. His home is in section 12, township 14, range 44, where he has a large circle of warm friends and is held in high esteem by all with whom he comes in contact.

     Mr. Nelson was born in Sweden, November 26, 1847, and was reared there, receiving a limited schooling, spending his boyhood on his parents' farm and also working out in the vicinity of his home. His parents lived and died in their native land, and when Nels was twenty-nine years of age he decided to strike out for America, landing in this country in 1878. He was the only member of his father's family who ever left Sweden, and it took considerable courage to break away from his home and all the dear ones; coming alone, practically without funds, to a strange land. However, he kept up a brave spirit, and his first location was in Montgomery county, Iowa, where he remained for about seven years, then came to Polk county, Nebraska. After two years in that vicinity he moved to Deuel county, homesteading on section 6, township 14, range 43, where he proved up, and afterwards settled on section 12, township 14, range 44.

     During the first years he experienced all the hardships that fell to the lot of the pioneers in the region, but with the persistence and energy which characterizes the people of his native land, stuck to his work faithfully and gradually built up a good home and farm, adding more land to his original homestead until he is now proprietor and owner of an elegant ranch of one thousand five hundred acres, devoted to mixed farming and stock raising. He has about one hundred and forty-five acres cultivated, raising good crops of corn, oats, wheat. etc., and has a large part of the ranch in pasture and hay meadow. He has about forty head of cattle and a splendid bunch of eighty-six horses, owning some fine animals which he prizes very highly, worth from one thousand dollars a piece clown. For several years our subject ran cattle in Cheyenne county, and lived on several different ranches. In July, 1906, he settled on his presnt (sic) ranch which he has improved in nice shape.

     Mr. Nelson was married in Polk county, Nebraska, April 6, 1886, to Jane A. Magee.

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Mrs. Nelson is a native of Indiana, raised and educated in Illinois, and was a widow at the time of her marriage to Mr. Nelson. Her maiden name was Van Brunt; both her parents are now deceased. A great deal of credit is due Mrs. Nelson for the part she has taken. She is a model helpmate, and has aided materially in the building up of their present home. She has successfully withstood all the trials and hardships of the early days, and fully realizes the price their home has cost in the privations of the earlier days. She has rode the mower, worked in the hay field, and has done considerable nursing among the sick in the county, having received calls from families for miles around. Mr. Nelson is a man of active public spirit, and in political faith is a Republican.


     Prominent among the younger ranchmen of Cherry county, who has built up a nice property for himself by dint of honest industry and good management. we mention the name of Victor L. Martin, residing on section 29, township 27, range 29. He is highly respected for his many sterling qualities, and enjoys a good standing in the community as a good neighbor and public-spirited citizen.

     Mr. Martin was born in Knox county, Illinois, on a farm, in 1877. He is a son of Adam Martin, of German stock, born in Pennsylvania, who was a pioneer in Cherry county, where our subject grew to manhood, the family settling here in 1886. His mother's maiden name was Lucy A. Everett, of American parentage, born and reared in Ohio. There were seven children in the family, and our subject was the fourth in order of birth. On coming to western Nebraska they drove through from Illinois by team, with a covered wagon containing their entire possessions, and spending six weeks on the road. Their first location was on a ranch ten miles north of Brownlee, and there they farmed for a number of years, Victor helping carry on the ranch, remaining with his father until he was twenty-two years old, and during that time they built up a good and comfortable home and ranch. In 1889 he took a homestead for himself, located on the Loup river, "batched it" until he had proven up on the land, and started in the stock business, spending about seven years on the place. He then took a Kincaid homestead three miles northwest of Brownlee, and moved on it in 1904. He had a pretty good start here, and spent his entire time in building up the place, erecting good buildings, fencing the land, etc.; and as the ranch was fitted with some improvements when he took it, has a fine place, consisting of six hundred and forty acres, and besides this he leases one thousand two hundred and eighty acres, using it all as a ranch, engaging principally in cattle raising, although he has a small bunch of horses and other stock.

      Mr. Martin has accumulated a nice property for so young a man, and is on the high road to wealth. He is ambitious and industrious, and has excellent business ability, his property showing the best management in its operation.


     William J. Wilson, who resides in Paxton precinct, on section 2, township 13, range 36, is numbered among the old settlers of Keith county, Nebraska. He has been engaged sucsessfully (sic) in farming and stock raising for many years past, and while developing a comfortable home for himself, has done much to build up his locality, and now enjoys the esteem of a host of people.

     Mr. Wilson was born in Henry county, Indiana, in 1864. His father, Joseph, was a farmer, a native of Ohio, who settled in Nebraska about 1880. Our subject was reared on a farm in his native state, receiving his education in the country schools, and lived at home until he was twenty-one years of age, began life for himself, following farm work, at first, and later operated rented land. He came to Keith county in 1887, arriving here in February with his family. For a time he lived at Ogallala, working on the section and followed railroading to make a living, as he had no money and no start. Soon after coming here he filed on a homestead, putting up a sod shanty in which the family lived, the building being unplastered and with no floors the first year. They had a hard time to get along, but Mr. Wilson worked out by the day and gradually improved his farm, doing all his work with a team of oxen which he bought in eastern Nebraska and drove through to his new location.

     When he came here he also brought with him seed potatoes, wheat, and corn, putting in a sod crop the first summer, but raised very little. After the hard times came on they moved to Polk county and remained for a year, but returned to the homestead and managed to get along fairly well. He began to raise better crops and added to his original farm so that he now owns three hundred and twenty acres, lying in the valley of South Platte river, extending back into the hills, a valuable piece of property. He engages in mixed farming and stock raising, and has been successful in

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both. He has put up good buildings, has wells and windmills, and the entire place fenced. He has also planted all kinds of fruit trees, including apple, pear, plum and cherry, besides smaller fruits. There are fine groves on the farm, making it one of the pleasant homes to be found in the vicinity.

     On January 5, 1885, Mr. Wilson married Miss Martha Gilbert, a native of Kentucky. They have two sons, Everett and Raymond. Mr. Wilson is a Republican in politics and a member of the Modern Woodmen and other lodges.


     The subject of this review is one of the most popular citizens of Keya Paha county, Nebraska, where he resides in section 10, township 32, range 20. He is one of those men whose hospitality and winning frankness favorably impress the casual acquaintance, and one need not wait to have neighbors or friends tell in order to find out that he is held in high esteem by his associates and fellowmen.

     Mr. Pettit is a native of Randolph county. Illinois, born November 18, 1839, on a farm. He is a son of Thomas Pettit, born at Kaskaskia, Illinois, at a time when there were but two houses in St. Louis, and whose parents were pioneers in Illinois, coming originally from Pennsylvania on flatboats by way of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, bringing sheep, cattle and horses, besides spinning-wheels, millstones and other necessaries with which to begin life in a new country. Our subject's mother was Miss Eliza Franklin, a native of Tennessee. He is the sixth member in a family of nine children, and while an infant, his parents moved to Jo Daviess county and later to Wisconsin where, in his boyhood, he received a very meager educatoin (sic), attending only the country schools, and those but little. He labored on his father's farm until the second year of the war, when he entered the United States service, enlisting in Company K, Fourteenth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. With his regiment he was ordered to the south, and subsequently took part in many hard battles, seeing service at Shiloh, Corinth, Iuka, siege of Vicksburg, Big Shanty. Baker Ridge, Atlanta, on July 22, 1864, the siege of Spanish Fort, at Nashville, Lovejoy Station, Jonesboro and Ezra Church, in all, over thirteen battles and many skirmishes. He received severe wounds at the charge of Vicksburg, losing a finger on the left hand, besides receiving a ball through his left arm. In 1865 he was mustered out at Mobile, and in October. discharged at Madison, Wisconsin. He had undermined his health in the war, and spent the following three years at home recuperating.

      In 1868 he was married to Miss Hattie Scott, who lived near his home. They were the parents of two children: Belle, married William Osborn, and is living in Keya Paha county, and Charles, engaged in the hardware business at Springview, Nebraska. In June, 1876, Mrs. Pettit died, and was sincerely mourned by her husband and children. Shortly after his marriage they moved to Montgomery county, Iowa, remaining there for a time, then went to Atchison county, Missouri, where he operated a mill. He afterwards went to Kansas and spent some time traveling there, seeing much of the slaughter of the original herds of buffalo which at that early day covered the plains. He first came to Keya Paha county in 1883, locating on his present homestead, which was then a wild tract of table land and canyons. They lived in a tent for a time, then put up a log shack, which was for a time their home. Hard times came on, and about 1885 the dry years took all his crops and hail destroyed everything, so that he became almost discouraged, but he stuck to it and gradually things turned for the better. He improved his farm, put up good buildings, and fenced his place, and has made a decided success of the undertaking. His farm comprises three hundred and twenty acres, one hundred of which is good farming land, well supplied with running water and a good growth of natural timber. He has helped materially in the building up of this section and from the beginning of his residence here has been one of the leading citizens in the advancement of its interests.

     Mr. Pettit was married the second time in Audubon, Audubon county, Iowa, to Miss Alvina Ham, born in Missouri, a daughter of Mordecai and Elizabeth Ham. Seven children were born of this marriage. They are as follows: Hattie, wife of Frank Estes, residing on a ranch in this county; Maud, wife of Carl White, living in Springview; Cora, who married William Kertzenberger; Carrie, wife of Fred Wilkins; George, May and Millie, still living at home.

     In political sentiment Mr. Pettit is a stanch Republican, but could never he induced to accept any office.

     On another page we present a picture of Mr. Pettit's residence.

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     Andrew J. Layton, residing on section 7, Liberty township, is the owner of a fine farm of four hundred and eighty acres and well-known throughout that locality as a successful and

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