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ALVA A. SMITH AND FAMILY
canvasser and commercial agent. For nine years he lived at Deadwood, South Dakota, during which time he was engaged as collector, clerk and general manager of stores there and at Lead City. For one year he was on the road selling groceries for the firm of Shankberg, of Sioux City, through the Big Horn basin, when a railroad wreck in which he was a victim, kept him off the road for some time. He then accepted his old position at Lead City, following which he became traveling representative of Raymond Bros. & Clark, through Western Nebraska, for five years. Mr. Emick then took charge of his brother's store in South Dakota, for some eight months. In 1909 he came to Scottsbluff county and bought an irrigated farm, on which he lived until 1918, when he sold that property and moved into Scottsbluff, where he has valuable realty. He also owns a farm near the city.
In 1911 Mr. Emick was united in marriage to Miss Myrtle Fry, who was born in Fall River county, South Dakota. She died in 1914 leaving one infant daughter, Myrtle Josephine. In the fall of 1917 Mr. Emick was married to Miss Julia Coony who was born in Custer county, Nebraska, and they have one daughter, Willemetia. Mrs. Emick is a member of the Christian church. In politics he is a Democrat and fraternally belongs to the order of Elks. In addition to being secretary and treasurer of the Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Company, Mr. Emick has been general manager of the work in Scottsbluff, Banner, Morrill and Sioux counties, the company's charter covering eleven counties in the Panhandle. A man of wide and varied experience, Mr. Emick is particularly well qualified for the responsible position he fills so well in the business world.
ALVA A. SMITH. -- It has often been said that Smith is a name hard to distinguish, yet it remains that the possessor of the name at the head of this review has succeeded, at least in a modest way, in distinguishing his cognomen in the realm of ordinary citizenship and practical, profitable farming. This is an ordinary story that has been duplicated perhaps a thousand times in western Nebraska, but it ever becomes interesting when narrowed down to an individual whose achievements are worthy of being published to the world. Mr. Smith is one of the homesteaders of Scottsbluff county who passed through many privations and hardships, courageously persevering in the face of discouraging situations, overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles, and eventually winning a way to well deserved success.
This man is a Wolverine by birth, born in McComb county, Michigan, February 12, 1862, amidst the throes of our great Civil War and it may be that some of the dogged determination that was imbued in the citizens of the north to preserve the Union at all cost entered into his mentality, for nothing has daunted his spirit. He is the son of Andrew and Esther (Arnold) Smith; the former born in the Empire state in 1838, died in Michigan in 1899, while the mother, like her son, was a native of Michigan, born there in 1841, who lived until 1896. The father was a successful Michigan farmer, who reared his family in great comfort, giving them all the advantages afforded in their community, excellent educations, and such practical knowledge as could be attained under his careful guidance on the farm during. the vacations and after leaving school.
There were eight children in the family: Iowa, who died at eighteen years of age; Alva; Alma, his twin, who became the wife of Joe Burgess, lived on a farm in the state of Michigan, and later removed to Gering, and now lives in Oregon; Eugene, a farmer in Michigan; Florence, the wife of William Drinkwater of Michigan; Minnie, deceased; Lila, the wife of Fred Drinkwater, also lives on a farm in Michigan; and Frances, the wife of George McVittie, a government mail clerk, resides in Detroit. Both the parents were members and supporters of the Methodist Episcopal church, while Mr. Smith took an active and prominent part in the councils of the Republican party.
Mr. Smith worked on a Michigan farm upon reaching manhood, but he heard of the great opportunities afforded on the prairies of the middle west and determined to put his fortune to the hazard, and breaking all the home ties and intimate associations, started for the Dakotas. He took plenty of time to look the country over as he had determined that wherever he located was to be a permanent home and Dakota did not measure up to his standard so he came to Cheyenne county in 1887, where he homesteaded 160 acres of land, preëmpted another tract of equal acreage, proved up on it and at the same time was engaged in making permanent and efficient improvements. His first home, like that of nearly all the pioneer settlers, was a sod house, but Mr. Smith met with success in his chosen vocation and before long the sod structure gave way to a comfortable farm home. Later Mr. Smith removed somewhat west and north of his first claim, locating in section 32-23-56 Scottsbluff county, in what is locally known as the Mitchell valley, is today one of the garden spots of the great state of Nebraska, that under modern methods and intensive farming is producing
more to the acre than ever was dreamed in the pioneer days when the Smith family located here. Mr. Smith is one of the men of the county who has made good use of his opportunities, and his life record illustrates what may be accomplished by one who is industrious far-sighted, and has an ambition to succeed His harvests have been cut short by drought, his crops ruined by hail and insect pests, but he was never discouraged to the extent of giving up, and the succeeding years brought prosperity, and today he is the owner of 160 acres of highly improved land, all under irrigation, so that he never worries about the weather as he is insured a crop with water a-plenty and the never failing sunshine of this section. He has substantial and practical farm buildings, a good home and latest farm equipment, being engaged in general agriculture and stockraising.
In 1891 Mr. Smith married Miss Alma Tappan at Broken Bow, Nebraska, the daughter of Bradford Tappan, both she and her father being natives of Michigan. Five children have become members of the Smith family: Floyd, who died in infancy; Kem, on a farm in Wyoming; Eunice, the wife of Claud Godbey, is at home, as are also Emmet and Craig.
Mr. Smith is one of the progressive business men of Scottsbluff county, is public-spirited, advocating every movement for the advancement of the community, which is attested by the fact that he is a school director and chairman of the irrigation board. A man of high ideals in life and commercial affairs, he is held in esteem by all his friends and associates. In politics he is a Democrat, but has never had the time or desire to hold public office, while his fraternal associations are with the Odd Fellows and Modern Woodmen.
JOHN SCHUMACHER. -- To set down a true history of Nebraska in all its counties, mention must be made of those who came into the state without capital, and through hard work and great self denial finally became of independent fortune because of ownership of valuable lands. Some of these early settlers, it is true, had not the courage to endure inevitable hardships and gave up before their battles over storm, drought and loss of crops and stock had been won, but there were others, like the late John Schumacher, who held on, worked harder, hoped for the best, and were well rewarded.
John Schumacher was born in Roxbury, Dane county, Wisconsin, January 21, 1862. He had school advantages near his father's farm and worked as a farmer until he determined to start out for himself. That he was a young man not easily discouraged may be assumed from the fact that with practically empty pockets, he walked the entire distance from his old home in Wisconsin to Cheyenne county, Nebraska. There he homesteaded in what is now Scottsbluff county, six miles southeast of the present town, and remained on his farm, developing and improving it, until the end of his life, his death occurring November 8, 1915. At that time he owned a section of irrigated land. He made a specialty of stock-raising and under his care this industry proved very profitable.
In 1893 John Schumacher was united in marriage with Miss Katie Gaugler, a schoolmate, who was born in Dane county, Wisconsin, a daughter of Joseph and Mary (Retsler) Gaugler, Mrs. Schumacher being the youngest of their family of fifteen children, nine of whom are living. Two daughters were born to Mr. and Mrs. Schumacher: Helena, the wife of Philo Tillson, a farmer north of Minatare, Nebraska, and Elsie, who resides with her mother and is attending school. Mrs. Schumacher is, as was her husband, a member of the Catholic church. On April 11, 1916, she moved to Scottsbluff and purchased a beautiful residence on Fourth avenue, but found it too great a care to keep it up, hence sold and now resides in great comfort at No. 1814 Fifth avenue. Mr. Schumacher was a Republican in politics and served on the school board in his township. He was an honest, upright man and was very highly regarded by all who knew him.
FRANK B. MORGAN, who has had quite a great deal to do with the material development of Scottsbluff, is a leading builder and contractor here, owner of valuable city realty both unimproved and built upon. Since coming here in 1914, he has shown personal and public-spirited interest in the city, has invested judiciously and has been an encourager of a number of worthy enterprises.
Frank B. Morgan was born in Caldwell county, Missouri, June 22, 1869, a son of Joseph and Tabitha (Hobbs) Morgan, the latter of whom was born in Illinois and is now deceased. The father of Mr. Morgan was born at Indianapolis, Indiana, a son of George Morgan, who was a native of Virginia. Joseph Morgan was a soldier in the Civil War, enlisting in the Fourteenth Missouri Infantry, served three years and was wounded at Shiloh. After a long period in a hospital, he reënlisted but was soon afterward discharged on account of disability. In 1883 he came to Nebraska and bought a section of land in Furnas county,
afterward selling the same and buying land in Oklahoma, His death occurred at Beaver City, Nebraska. He was a Democrat in politics. Both he and wife were members of the Christian church. They had seven children, Frank B. being the fourth of the five survivors, who are: George R., a farmer near Hendley, Nebraska; Delilah, the widow of ___ Whiteman, of Hendley; Thomas, a butcher in business at Hendley, and Mary, the wife of Roy Goebel, a farmer in Furnas county.
Frank B. Morgan obtained his education in the public schools and afterward followed farming until he was thirty years old. He had always been deft in the use of tools and then began to work at the carpenter trade, going to Denver in 1901, and worked as a carpenter there and at Fort Collins until 1905, when he came to Morrill county, Nebraska. He secured a homestead there, which he late sold, then bought land in Wyoming and subsequently sold that. In 1914 he came to Scottsbluff and has proved a valuable citizen. He invested in vacant property here and through improving it with attractive residences, has added greatly to the appearance of every section in which he owns lots. He has found ready sale for his houses, for the people of Scottsbluff are homemakers, in the main, and his enterprise has been appreciated. Mr. Morgan has assisted in the organization of the Commercal (sic) Bank at Scottsbluff.
In 1890 Mr. Morgan was united in marriage to Miss Mary E. Martin, who was born in Illinois, and is a daughter of John and Matilda Martin. The mother of Mrs. Morgan died at Stamford, in Harland county, Nebraska. The father died at the home of a daughter in Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Morgan have had children as follows: Mahlon C., who is a farmer in Scottsbluff county; Merlin O., who was honorably discharged in February, 1919, from military service in the World War, entered the navy, was first located on the Pacific coast near Seattle, Washington, then spent one year in the Canal Zone, later was sent to New York and was discharged at Brooklyn, as chief carpenter; Mable, who is a student in the high school, and John and Audry, who are doing well in their several grades in school. Mr. Morgan and his family are members of the Christian church. Fraternally he is a Mason and belongs also to the Modern Woodmen. He is not active politically and votes independently.
CHARLES S. SIMMONS, who finds his time fully occupied with the work of his profession, sign painting, can show a large amount of fine, artistic work from his brush at Scottsbluff, in which city he painted his first sign in April, 1900.
Charles Sheldon Simmons belongs to an old county family and was born near Scottsbluff, Nebraska, May 20, 1887. He is a son of Charles H. Simmons, extended mention of whom will be found in this work. Mr. Simmons attended the public schools, Very early he displayed talent with pencil and brush and after learning the painting trade, decided to specialize on sign painting. This branch of the business requires not only practical knowledge but real skill and Mr. Simmons went to Chicago and entered a class in the Art Institute, where he remained a year, securing necessary technical training as well as artistic inspiration. His work is very much admired and his services are in constant demand.
In 1897 Mr. Simmons was united in marriage to Miss Estella M. Snyder, who was born at Garrison, Iowa, a daughter of Edward H. and Belinda (Hilka) Snyder. They were born in Pennsylvania. The father of Mrs. Simmons is engaged in truck farming near Sterling, Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Simmons have two children, namely: Cleo, who is seven years old, and Charles, who is a babe of eight months. Mr. and Mrs. Simmons are active members of the Presbyterian church. In politics he is a zealous Republican, and fraternally he is identified with the Knights of Pythias, the Modern Woodmen, and the A. F. & A. M.
AUGUST DORMANN, who is a well known business man of Scottsbluff, where his beautiful residence and other property are located, for a number of years has been identified with commercial enterprises of large importance here and elsewhere.
August Dormann was born at Wisner, Nebraska, in 1877. He is a son of August Dormann, who was born in Germany, came to the United States, has been a merchant all his life, and now resides at Denver, Colorado. At Omaha, Nebraska, be was married to Frederick A. Kemenbley, who was born in New Jersey, February 9, 1851, and died February 28, 1910. Of their five children August is the fourth in order of birth, the others being: Agnes, the wife of William Reisendorfor, a lumber merchant in California; George W., foreman of the Skinner & Eddy shipbuilding plant at Seattle, Washington; Anna, resides with her father, and Fred, a consulting engineer at Denver. The family is of the Lutheran faith. In politics the father is a Republican. He was one of the first three men to take out policies in the New York Life In-
surance Company, in Nebraska, and is the only survivor of the three.
August Dormann obtained his educational training in the public schools of Wisner, after which he was associated with his father in the mercantile business until 1906 when he came to Scottsbluff county. He bought a farm on which he resided two years, then took charge of the Zoellner clothing store at Scottsbluff, which he managed for five years. On retiring from that connection he went into business of buying and selling mercantile stocks, in which he continued until 1916, when he organized the August Dormann Company, for the purpose of buying farms and ranches for sale or trade. Early in 1919 he bought all the company's interests with the result that he owns many acres of fine land in Michigan, South Dakota, and western Nebraska. He now devotes himself to his large farming interests.
In 1899 Mr. Dormann was united in marriage to Miss Katherine O'Connor, who was born at Wisner, Nebraska, and they have had the following children born to them: Charles August, who was born December 23, 1900, entered military service in January, 1917, and is a member of a hospital corps now stationed in the Philippine Islands; George Eugene, who was born October 4, 1902; Genevieve Ruth, who was born May 3, 1904; Jerome Wilbur, who was born August 11, 1908, and Katherine Virginia, who was born July 7, 1911, and two deceased: Victor Hugo, and Herald. Mrs. Dormann and the children belong to the Catholic church. Mr. Dormann is a Republican in politics and is a Mason in good standng (sic).
JOHN W. BROSHAR for many years was well known in Nebraska, and his honorable name is preserved by a surviving famliy (sic) of Scottsbluff. He was a native of Ripley county, Indiana, born May 7, 1845. His parents moved to Champaign, Illinois, in 1852, and Mr. Broshar was educated there and from that town enlisted and served during the thirteen closing months of the Civil War. After leaving the army he began business independently as a farmer in Illinois and continued agricultural pursuits until 1888, when he came with his family to the Panhandle, took up a homestead in Box Butte county, and lived on this farm for a number of years, then took a Kinkaid claim near the line of Sioux county. His death occurred at Canton, Nebraska, February 6, 1913.
At Paris, Illinois, in 1875, John W. Broshar was united in marriage with Miss Jennie Waggoner, who was born in Fayette county, Ohio, and is a daughter of E. D. and Elizabeth F. (Bush) Waggoner. Mrs. Broshar's father was born in Virginia and the mother in Ohio. They moved to Illinois in 1864 and both died there. Mrs. Broshar was the eldest of their four children. To Mr. and Mrs. Broshar three daughters were born: Pearl, the wife of Arthur Barr, a farmer near Melbeta, in Scottsbluff county; Myrtle, the widow of Henry Safford, resides at Scottsbluff, and Edith, who resides with her mother, is connected with the Irrigation Bank.
Following her husband's death, Mrs. Broshar displayed business capacity by securing a homestead for herself and resided on her property until 1915, when she came to Scottsbluff and is now enjoying the comforts of a beautiful home at No. 1601 Fourth avenue. The family belongs to the Baptist church. Mr. Broshar was a man of sterling character. He was successful as a farmer and stockraiser, and took considerable interest in public matters in Republican political circles in Box Butte county, although he never consented to accept public office.
ALBERT W. PETERSON, who is one the quiet, industrious, useful business men of Scottsbluff, has been a resident of this city since the spring of 1915, but has lived in Nebraska since he was five years old. He is a carpenter and contractor who has built up a large business and has the reputation here an elsewhere of business integrity and dependability.
Albert W. Peterson was born at. Princeton, Illinois, April 14, 1880, and is the oldest of seven children born to Nels W. and Anna C. (Swanson) Peterson, both of whom were born in Sweden and came young to the United States. They were married at Princeton, Illinois, where he was foreman for the Bryant Nursery Company for nine years. In 1885 Nels W. Peterson brought his family to Nebraska and bought land near Aurora, in Hamilton county, on which he has lived ever since, at the present time owning 320 acres of fine land. He is an example of the citizenship of Nebraska that has prospered within her welcoming borders through faithful and law abiding industry, for he came here from Illinois not only without capital but burdened with debt. He has worked hard but feels well repaid. He has never been active in politics, has always favored prohibition legislation, and in casting his vote as a citizen, gives his support to candidates he believes will unselfishly do their best, irrespective of party policy, for the country. He and wife are members of the Swedish Mission church.
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