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er, after living in Missouri for a number of years, moved to Colorado and engaged in the ranching business. In a runaway accident he was thrown from a buggy into the icy waters of an irrigation ditch, and owing to his age he was unable to withstand the shock and his death resulted.
The subject of this sketch came to Cheyenne county, Nebraska, in 1885 as a single man. In 1906 he was united in marriage with Elizabeth J. Baumer at Lancaster, Missouri, his wife being a native of that place. Three children have blessed this union, namely: Alpha, Joseph R., and Perry E., all of whom are living at home.
Mr. Neeley homesteaded and pre-empted three hundred and twenty acres of land in Mitchell Valley, in Scottsbluff county, which is now one of the richest sections of the great irrigated territory of western Nebraska. Later he sold his holdings there, and moved to the old home in Missouri, but after an absence of five years he became convinced of the great truth that it is a crime to leave the North Platte Valley irrigated country, and an unpardonable crime to stay away; so he returned and purchased a farm of one hundred and, sixty acres of irrigated and eighty acres of non-irrigated land near Gering, which he has improved himself. It is now up to the standard of Scottsbluff county farm homes, which is one of the highest standard in the world.
In politics Mr. Neeley has been an independent voter. He belongs to the I. O. O. F., Masons, and M. W. A., and for a number of years has been a member of the school board of his district. He is well known and stands high in the estimation of his neighbors.
J. J. KIPP. -- The subject of this sketch was born in Germany on September 5, 1858, and came to the United States in 1862, and settled at Quincy Illinois. He is the son of Joseph and Elizabeth Kipp, both natives of Germany, and both now deceased. When he was four years of age his mother died, his father being at that time in America, and three children of the family made the long journey across, the ocean to join their father. The brother, Frederick, and the sister, Elizabeth, who accompanied the little one are now not living.
Mr. Kipp's first wife was Mary E. Crane, a native of Iowa and to them were born two children, Earl and Elizabeth, both living. The son is a farmer at Reddington, Nebraska, and the daughter, whose name is now Elizabeth Davis, resides at Harrison, South Dakota.
After the death of his first wife, Mr. Kipp was married to Frace E. Myers, who was born in Illinois, the daughter of Andrew and Ella Myers, of Independence, Missouri. Four children have been born to this union, Joseph H., Ella, Dorothy, Mabel, and Victor.
In March, 1888, Mr. Kipp settled in Sioux county, Nebraska, and followed farming and cattle raising there until 1901, when he disposed of his homestead and purchased land in Scottsbluff county and has since made his home upon it. He has eighty acres of fine irrigated land, which he has improved from its former condition of raw prairie into a modern and up-to-date farm; and in addition he owns a half interest in eighty acres near his home place. In common with the other pioneer's of western Nebraska, Mr. Kipp endured the privations and hardships of early Nebraska homesteading and often found it hard to make both ends meet. He is now prosperous and one of the substantial members of his community.
JOHN HARVEY PFEIFER. -- One of the prosperous exponents of the agricultural and stock-raising interests of Scottsbluff county is the man whose name heads this review, who has been a resident of this section for a decade.
Mr. Pfeifer was born in Crawford county, Ohio, November 2, 1872, the son of Godfrey F. and Emiline (Snyder) Pfeifer, both of whom were natives of the Buckeye state. Seven children were born to them: Chris, now a ranchman in Banner county, Nebraska; Laura, the wife of Frank Sears, a lumber merchant in Montana; Katy, who married Francis Whitman of Russell county, Kansas, and J. H., are living, the others are dead.
The father was a farmer school teacher in Ohio, and his was also, the distinction of having been a gallant soldier of the Union during the Civil War. After the cessation of hostilities he became a farmer in the Buckeye state but being a man of excellent education and high attainments devoted a part of his time to communal affairs for the benefit of the rising generation, teaching in the public schools. After some residence there he sold out and came to Kansas, taking up a homestead. From there he came to Banner county, where he finished proving up on a homestead left by a son who died. Subsequently he came still farther west to Scottsbluff county where he passed the remainder of his days. The mother lived in this county until September, 1913, when she too, sought her last rest. In
politics the father was a staunch supporter of the principles of the Democratic party but cast his vote independently when it came to county and municipal affairs, throwing his influence toward the man best fitted for each office. He was a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, having been a member of a battery of light artillery from Ohio during that memorable conflict. He was a Christian man of high standing in every community where he resided and had many friends who held him in high esteem.
Instances are numerous in Scottsbluff county where men have arrived in this section with few acquaintances or friends and have worked their way to affluence and independence, Mr. Pfeifer is one of the number; before he came here he had been unable to accumulate any large sum of money but this in no way discouraged him, for he was a man of energy, had faith in the future of western Nebraska and set out to become possessed of a share of the prosperity he believed was coming to this county and today his faith has been justified by the comfortable fortune he and his family enjoy.
April 12, 1906, marks the day Mr. Pfeifer became a resident of this great commonwealth, for it was then that he located in Banner county as a ranchman, where for three years he was engaged in developing and operating a farm. He had already learned the best methods of planting and harvesting so that he was well equipped with practical experience to enable him to carry on agricultural pursuits in the new country which he had decided to make his future home. Three years later he came to Scottsbluff to work for a cattleman where he gained valuable experience in handling stock on a large scale, feeding, buying and marketing that has proved of value to him in recent years. Within a short period he bought his present farm of one hundred and forty-two acres, which at that time had few improvements but which he has brought to a high state of cultivation. He is engaged in general farming and stock-raising, being highly successful in feeding and fattening cattle on alfalfa and beets, shipping to the great meat centers farther east.
On November 9, 1910 Mr. Pfeifer married Annie Hiersche, a native of Germany, and to them have been born four children: Leonard, Emma H., Dean and Clyde. Mr. Pfeifer was educated in the excellent schools of this state and Kansas and is a firm believer in a good education for everyone and special training for any special vocation in life. He says nothing shall stand in the way of his children securing the best educational advantages afforded by district, town and state, and as a result of his convictions he is a supporter of every movement for higher education, county farm bureaus, civic improvements in both local and state wide affairs. He is today one of the progressive representatives of modern rural life.
EARL W. COLLINS, has identified himself most fully with the civic and material interests of Scottsbluff county, for he is not only a representative agriculturist of this section, but is also the owner of a well improved farm estate in section 30, township 23-55. He is a native son of the west and has exemplified its progressive spirit in the varied activities that have brought him a generous share of temporal prosperity (sic).
Mr. Collins was born in Valley county, Nebraska, in 1878, the son of Warren and Amanda (Thurston) Collins. The former a native of Allegheny county, New York, while on his mother's side he inherits traits from sturdy old New England ancestors, as she was born in the state of Maine. There were eight children in the family: Oscar, a farmer in Valley county; Carrie, the wife of W. J. Seeley, a farmer of Milford; Helen, a trained nurse at Ord, Nebraska; Earl W.; Ralph and Lynn, both farmers in Valley county; Rex, now engaged in farming in Washington, and Floyd, a student in a medical college who spends his vacations at home. The parents came to Nebraska in 1872, when the only buildings known in the central part of the state and westward were composed of sod, and it was in such a home on a prairie homestead that Earl Collins spent his boyhood days, attending the district school during the winter and doing such work as was suitable to a boy on the farm. He has watched with the eye of a proprietor, the various changes that have been brought by the passage of the years and the sturdy and progressive work of the big hearted pioneers, and has himself borne a full share of the labor of development. He is now one of the landholders and successful agriculturists of the Mitchell community, of Scottsbluff county where his accomplishments entitle him to the respect and esteem in which he is uniformly held by his fellow citizens.
Mr. Collins located here in 1905, taking up a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres, on which he at once placed excellent improvements. He now has all his land un-
der cultivation, has a fine home and substantial buildings and has established himself as a progressive and skilled farmer who thoroughly knows his business and can make his labor pay him proportionately.
In 1907 Mr. Collins was united in marriage with Frances Hewett and they have two charming girls, Doris and Helen, both at home.
Mrs. Collins was a native of Plymouth county, Iowa, but since coming to western Nebraska, has learned to love the great wide open spaces of this section, where the skies are nearly ever sunny, and the country a wonderful picture with its great expanses of growing crops in the spring and of yellow ripened grain in the fall. She like her husband, is progressive in ideas and is a worthy helpmate for such a man. Mr. Collins is an up-to-date business man, keeps abreast of all questions of the day, whether national, state or communal and favors every progressive movement in this section. He is an independent voter, exercising his privilege of the franchise as his wisdom and conscience dictate, while his fraternal affiliations are with the Modern Woodmen of America.
MICHAEL L. KIESEL.-- Scottsbluff county has few finer citizens of finer fiber or more sterling worth than Michael Kiesel, whose field of operations is in the Mitchell district where he is located on a fine farm with well developed land, beautiful home, excellent and practical farm buildings and where he expects to pass many happy prosperous years. Mr. Kiesel is a Hoosier, born in Gibson county, Indiana, August 30, 1881, the son of Matthew and Lena (Whitman) Kiesel. The mother was born in France and though a devoted wife and mother lived to spend but a few short years with her family as she died when quite young. Matthew Kiesel Sr., was born in Indiana where he was reared and educated. Upon reaching manhood's estate he engaged in farming, owning a fine, well developed tract of one hundred and twenty acres of land where he successfully conducted general farming operations for many years. Today he is a sturdy, vigorous old man of seventy years. He is, a staunch supporter of the priciple (sic), of the Democratic party and liberal supporter and member of the Catholic church, a faith in which he was reared from childhood.
Michael Keisel, Jr., availed himself of the public school advantages afforded in his native state, by which he qualified himself for useful citizenship and such public service as he is called upon to perform. His life occupation of his own choosing was farming, in which he has made a striking success. His first practical work of this nature was as a boy on the old home place in Indiana, where he helped as much as his years and strength permitted, thus gaining a practical education along with theoretical studies in school. Indiana, was, however, well settled and there was little land available for the younger generation. As the young man was a wide reader he learned of the opportunities afforded on the great rolling prairies of the middle west and yielded to the call of the open country, coming to Nebraska in 1907. After looking the country over he decided to locate in the panhandle and took up seventy-six acres of relinquishment land in the Mitchell district, Scottsbluff county, on which he has erected excellent buildings, a good farm home, placed the land in an excellent state of cultivation and everything around the farm indicates that the owner is one of the proseprous (sic) farmers of the county. Mr. Kiesel is modern in his methods, he believes that the day of the open range is over and that the future meat producers will be the small farmer who specializes in thoroughbred stock, with this idea in mind he has made a specialty of raisng (sic) nothing but pure breds. His choice has been Holstein Friesian cattle, Shropshire sheep, Poland-China hogs and barred Plymouth Rock chickens, all of which have a wide reputation for their uniform standard of excellence and have been widely distributed over western Nebraska and the surrounding states, as Mr. Kiesel holds a public sale almost every year to which buyers come from all over the northwestern section of the country. He takes great pride in the many blue ribbons won by his fine stock and chickens at the various county fairs where he has become a well known exhibitor.
Independent in his ideas and methods as well as a far sighted business man it is but natural that he should follow along these lines in other matters and is an Independent politically, knowing no party lines when a good man is running for office, as he wants the best man to serve the people of the community. He is a member of the Catholic church, the faith in which his ancestors were reared.
June 17, 1913, is a day marked in his life, for on it was solemnized his marriage with Miss Maud L. Kesler, and to them have been born three happy children: Sylvester, Agatha and Ruth.
JESSE FRANKLIN ENLOW, who is one of the representative citizens of Scottsbluff county, living in the Mitchell district, where he is a landowner of well known prominence, holds a unique position in the annals of this great commonwealth, as he was the first man to conduct a dairy in the capitol city of Nebraska. Today he is a worthy representative of the agricultural interest of the county, having been engaged in farming pursuits in this locality for nearly a quarter of a century, and so may be regarded as one of the pioneers who has played his part in the vital drama that has turned this section of Nebraska into a paradise for the homeseeker, developing the unbroken prairie into rich farms dotted with thriving communities. Mr. Enlow is a Hoosier, born in Indiana October 7, 1869, the son of James H. and Minerva (Hardsaw) Enlow, the former a native of the far famed Blue Grass state and the latter of Indiana. Both of them died in the prime of life at fifty years of age. James Enlow was a farm boy, by vocation but a stone mason by trade, who divided his time between his land and business, in which he was markedly successful. A man of high standing in the community, well educated and read, his advice was sought on many matters of importance by friends and acquaintances. He was a hearty supporter of the Republican party and a member of the Methodist Episcopal church of which his family were also communicants.
Jesse Enlow was left an orphan at the age of twelve years and made his home with a family in that locality. He received his educational advantages in the public schools of his native state and graduated from the high school at Valley City, Indiana. He became a farmer but the business openings afforded in Indiana did not satsfy (sic) him, and with the idea of gaining a broader field he came to Nebraska in 1890. The same year he entered the dairying field in Lincoln. The capitol of the state was not then the thriving city of today; the population was small and when Mr. Enlow opened a modern up-to-date dairy it was an event of moment to the inhabitants who heretofore had never enjoyed such cosmopolitan a service. Subsequently there were other men engaged in the same business, but he was the pioneer.
The life in Lincoln proved unsatisfactory, as it was so confining to a man used to the open, and he decided to take up farming in the western part of the state where homesteads were still obtainable and came out to Scottsbluff county, homesteading in the Tub Spring district, but later sold his relinquishment and purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land on section 16, and the remainder of this school section he operates under a lease. Part of his land is already under irrigation and it is but a question of time until more will be under ditch.
Here he has established his home, erected a comfortable house, fine farm buildings and now is the processor (sic) of fine improved farm land. From the first Mr. Enlow seemed to see into the future; that the profits were to go to the man who handled thorough-bred stock, so has specialized in blooded Hereford cattle, Duroc Jersey hogs, and also makes a business of feeding range cattle for market. His farm is out of the general run, being characterized by his own individuality, which makes it one of the most prosperous and interesting in the whole panhandle region. He planned all his improvements and that they are exceptionally fine, attest to his ability. He has set out a fine large orchard with many trees already in high state of production. It goes without saying that such a man has a complete line of farm and orchard equipment, with latest designed machinery. Mr. Enlow stands for the epitome of progressiveness in this section and is a worthy example that younger men in agricultural pursuits would do well to follow if they would journey rapidly along the highway to success. He is an independent voter and a keen student of political affairs from those of his immediate community up to ones of national scope. He is a sturdy supporter of the public school for he says that all his life he has been using the knowledge that he learned in both elementary and high school and that every boy and girl ought to count the diploma from the high school as a white milestone in life. Mr. Enlow married Miss Alice Lonsdale of Lnicoln (sic), whose parents are deceased. She is a gracious and charming woman with a great big heart, as she gives a home to two of her nephews, George and Sterling, who are sturdy youths in whom she takes great pride. They have one daughter, Dorothy Elizabeth, aged five years, who at the age of twenty-three months won second prize, scoring ninety-seven and a half, at Better Babies con- test at the State Fair in Lincoln, in 1916. Mr. and Mrs. Enlow are splendid neighbors on whom no one calls in vain at time of stress and trouble, and they enjoy the love and confidence of a large circle of friends.
WILLIAM T. EVANS. -- Although variously identified with affairs in Scottsbluff county since his arrival here more than a decade ago, it is probably as a county agricultural agent, he will he longest and gratefully remembered. More and more is it demonstrated that a cultivated mind and fine instincts reach their highest development oftentimes amidst agricultural surroundings, diffusing around them that refinement and peace that are the hallmarks of the born student. To such a class belongs Mr. Evans, who is now one of the land owners of Scottsbluff county, but who for years has been one of the most prominent men in civic affairs.
He was born in Adams county, Iowa, February 4, 1883, the son of F. E. and Eva L. (Roberts) Evans. The father was a native of Wisconsin and the mother of Illinois; both came from a long line of sturdy eastern stock, as the earlier members of the respective families were pioneers in the middle west. Both the parents are still living on their fine Iowa farm, the father being sixty-three years of age and the mother sixty. All the family are hale and hearty in old age, living out the full Bibical (sic) span of "three score years and ten," for as a boy Mr. Evans had eight living grand and great-grand parents while two of his children had seven gradparents (sic) and the others have five.
The country school of Iowa furnished William Evans his early educational training, supplemented with the practical work a boy learns on the home farm. He spent his youth and early manhood in Iowa, but soon after attaining his majority he determined to establish himself independently in business. Looking the country over Mr. Evans decided that there was the greatest future in the irrigated lands of the middle west where crops are always assumed with the plentiful supply of water and never failing sunshine of the rolling prairie lands. With this in view he located in section 30, township 23-55, not far from Mitchell, in 1906, a young man of twenty-three with all the future before him, filled with optimism and confident that with hard work, study of climatic and crop conditions dame fortune would smile upon his efforts and he was not mistaken, for in thirteen years he has won a fine farm, good business and is considered one of the most representative and progressive agriculturists of this up-to-date farming community. The improvements on his land are of the latest; he has a good home, adequate farm buildings with modern equipment, all of which are indications that he is a capable farmer, good citizen and progressive in business. Mr. Evans carries on general farming and stockraising, specializing in Duroc Jersey hogs. That he stands high in the community is attested by the positions of honor and trust that have been confided to him by his friends and acquaintances, for he is director of the school board, secretary of the District Farmers Union, secretary of the Farmers' Union Local, and some three years ago was commissioned county agent of Scottsbluff by Governor Neville. All the offices which take so much of his time have been filled to the great satisfaction of the community which he serves.
Well educated, and a thinker who keeps abreast of all present day movements whether commercial or political, Mr. Evans is an independent voter on both local and national questions, voting as his conscience dictates and for the best man for office. He is a member of the Methodist church, to which he is a liberal donator.
In Furnas county, Nebraska, on the 25th of December, 1910, Mr. Evans married Pearl Converse, also a native of Iowa, and they have four children: Ilda, Dale, Lura and Ronald, all residing with their parents.
WILLIAM OTTE, whose well improved farm is situated on section 22, township 22-54, is one of the substantial men of Scottsbluff county. He was born at New Bremen, Ohio, November 27, 1868, a son of William and Lizzie (Sollman) Otte. The father was born in Ohio and spent his life there, dying at the age of seventy years. The mother was born in Indiana but moved to Ohio with her parents when twelve years old.
William Otte grew up on his father's farm in Ohio and attended the country schools. In 1888 he came to Nebraska, locating at first near Talmadge and for some time worked for farmers in Otoe county. He remembers an early experience in freighting, when he hauled posts to Alliance for ten cents each. In 1891 Mr. Otte came to Scottsbluff county and homesteaded and this property he still owns and has added to, until now he has an entire section, which, through hard work, has been well developed. His buildings are substantial, his fields are cultivated with modern machinery, and his stock is standard. He has been industrious and saving and has something to show for his years of labor.
Mr. Otte was married to Miss Mattie Schuyler, whose parents came from Pennsylvania to Nebraska and located at Burwell in Garfield county. Both are now deceased. Mr. and
Mrs. Otte have three children: Belle, Clifton and Wilma. Mr. Otte has never been very active in politics and has never been a candidate for any office. He is a good citizen, however, takes interest in the public schools, good roads and other general subjects, contributes his share to public enterprises, and may well be called a representative citizen of his county where he stands well with his neighbors.
FRANK LINCOLN LOGAN.-- Though he is yet many years from the psalmist's, "three score years and ten," and still possessed of his full amount of physical and mental vigor, Mr. Logan has the enviable distinction of being one of the first permanent residents of Scottsbluff county, arriving here in 1890, and thus his memory compasses the entire gamut that has been run in the development of this section of Nebraska from a prairie wilderness to a populous and opulent district of this great commonwealth, and it is gratifying to him to have been able to play a part in the civic and industrial progress and upbuilding of the county.
Frank Logan is descended from staunch Pennsylvania stock, as his ancestors located in the Keystone state at an early day. He was born in Lee county, Iowa, September 4, 1865, the son of H. R. and Catherine C. (McFarlane) Logan, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania; the mother lived to the age of forty-five years, passing away in Iowa in 1885, while the father survived to be sixty-four years of age, passing away in 1906. He was a farmer in Washington county, Pennsylvania, who came to Iowa at an early day to take advantage of the fine farming land in that state, and there he passed the remainder of his days. Both the parents were members and supporters of the Presbyterian church and the father was a stalwert member of the Republican party.
The subject of this review spent his boyhood days on his father's farm in Iowa, acquiring his early education in the public schools of his district and at the same time learning the practical business of farming from experience on the land in Iowa, where he remained some years after attaining his majority, but the country was getting well settled up around the home farm and he decided to establish himself farther west where land could be obtained by homesteading. Accordingly he came to Nebraska in 1887, locating at York. Then in 1890 locating in Scottsbluff county, in section 22, township 23-56, where he took a homestead and timber claim which has never passed out of his ownership.
Mr. Logan had a little capital, composed of $1,000 earned and saved in three years while at York, when he came to this section, combined with a sturdy determination to succeed, a healthy body and mental ability of a high order and these have prove enough for him to make a fortune, for from time to time he has purchased more land until today he is one of the largest holders of real estate in Scottsbluff county, as he now owns 2,850 acres, four hundred and seventy of which are under irrigation. He has been a resident since the time when the only houses in this section were sod, half dug-outs, and has watched with the eye of a proprietor the various changes that have been wrought by the passage of years and the sturdy and progressive work of the settlers, and has himself borne a full share in the labor and development, for all the improvements on his large holdings are the result of his own brain and muscle; all the trees on his property he set himself and he has literally made the "desert bloom like a rose." So that the virgin earth has become a fruitful mother to him and his. Mr. Logan was a man of foresight, thrift and diligence and with such qualifications it is but natural that his accomplishments have been of an unusual order. They have won for him fortune, and the esteem and respect which are accorded him by his friends and associates.
In addition to his own property Mr. Logan leases three quarter sections of school land; he has fine buildings on his property, a beautiful home, the latest farm equipment and uses modern methods, having long been established as a progressive and skilled farmer who thoroughly knows his business. He carries on general farming and stock-raising and his success attests to the soundness of his management and methods.
Mr. Logan was first married to Miss Bertha Akers, a native of Colorado, in 1895; she was the daughter of William Akers of Alliance, who was engaged in the land office of that town. She died in 1900, and he married a second time in 1908, Mrs. Ruth Etchison, the daughter of James Roberts. There were ten children in the Logan family: Emma who died in infacy (sic); Addie, the wife of J. P. Braden, of Arcadia, Nebraska; John, a farmer of Morrill; Frank, the subject of this review; Harry, now living in Iowa; Samuel, a farmer in Kansas; James, a resident of Wisconsin, where he is a school teacher; Alex, an Iowa farmer; Emmet, in the hardware business in Morrill, and Cora, the wife of Harry Morris,
a lumber dealer of Morrill. In politics Mr. Logan is a Republican.
ALBERT ERNEST CURTIS. -- The man whose life history these lines relate lives in the Mitchell district, where the soil is productive and where the inhabitants are among the finest and best peopl (sic) in the country. From the time of his arrival in Scottsbluff county in 1906, to the present, Albert Curtis has been demonstrating the possession of qualities of perseverence (sic), industry, and good citizenship, which have combined to win him personal success as an agriculturist and the esteem and friendship of those among whom he has lived and with whom he has been associated. This enterprising and energetic farmer and stockraiser of section 31, township 23-55, is a Wolverine by birth, having been born in Branch county, Michigan, November 15, 1867, of fine colonial stock, as his parents were Henry R. and Anna (Hepler) Curtis, the former a native of New York state, born there in 1834, while the mother was born in Pennsylvania in 1843. The fattier was a farmer who also engaged in a meat and butcher business in Nebraska. He heard of the wonderful opportunities afforded men willing to win farms from the. prairies, and desiring greater advantages for his growing family decded (sic) to locate in the new country being opened up west of the Missouri. He removed to Nebraska, locating in Polk county, where he purchased a relinquishment, proved up on it, and made excellent improvements on his land for that day. He soon was actively engaged in general farming, which, due to his thrift, hard work and perseverence (sic) proved a most satisfactory investment and there reaping the harvest of early endeavor, he passed the remainder of his life.
There were ten children in the Curtis family, four of whom are living: Matilda, the wife of William Root, lives in Missouri; Nettie, who married Henry S. Gerard; Viva, the wife of Ernest Rogers, and Albert, the subject of this review. The children grew up on the prairie homestead attending the district schools such as were afforded in their day and at home developing into fine men and women by the assistance they rendered their parents The father was a staunch supporter of the Republican party and at one time was constable of Butler county, Nebraska, but he cared little for the turmoil of political life though he took active and interested part in all civic movements for the uplift and improvement of county, state and nation. He was one of the leading members of the United Brethren church and was known as a man whose word was as good as his bond, while his deeds were worthy of emulation by the younger men who could have the benefits of his precepts.
Albert Curtis came to Scottsbluff county in 1906, bought a relinquishment of one hundred and sixty acres of land and today is the owner of one hundred and twenty acres of choice farming property. This land at that time was not in good condition, but he set about remedying this defect, and he now has one of the fertile valuable tracts that go to make this section of the state one of the garden spots of Nebraska. He is engaged in general farming, being equally at home in all branches, and has made what may be considered a great success in his chosen vocation, for he keeps only high grade stock and today enjoys the benefit of the most modern equipment procurable on the market.
In 1902, Mr. Curtis. married Miss Epsy Harper, a native of Ohio, and they have two children: Jessie Blanch, the wife of Harley Abbott, a farmer in Minnesota, and Minnie Hazel, who is a trained nurse in the Edmonson hospital at Council Bluffs. Mr. Curtis chose for his second wife, Emerett T. Banning, a native of Wisconsin; a daughter of Newell Bartlett and Cora E. (McKeen) Banning. He born in Connecticut and she in New York. On the maternal side, one Sarah Miller was a passenger on the Mayflower. She married Thomas McKeen who was a signer of the Declaration of Independence.
Newell Bartlett Banning was a descendent of Lady Cheswick, who was lady in waiting to the queen of England. She married Captain Ranson. She died at the age of twenty-seven years, leaving one daughter who became the wife of Theopolis Banning, parents of Newell Bartlett Banning.
Being a well educated man it but follows that Mr. Curtis, is deeply interested in all civic movements and educational matters pertaining to the welfare of his community and for three years served as director of school district number 42. He is independent in his pilitics (sic), casting his vote as his judgment dictates. He and his wife are members of the Congregational church. Mr. Curtis enjoys the respect of a large circle of friends and is really a progressive son of the great west who has exhibited the sterling qualities and characteristics of the hardy race from which he springs,
JOHN B. DOUGLAS, is a well known citizen of Scottsbluff county who has given to farming the careful management that insures great returns for his labors. Mr. Douglas was born in Poweshiek county, Iowa, November 3, 1878, the son of Andrew and Julia (Timmins) Douglas, he born in Scotland, she born in Pennsylvania. The father came to America when a lad of thirteen. locating first in Vermont, then in Illinois, where he obtained excellent educational advantages to supplement the schooling he had received in his native land. After reaching manhood he removed to Iowa where he purchased land, conducting general farming operations for a number of years, at the same time engaging to a large extent in stock-raising. Subsequently he went to Colorado. where he became engaged in general truck farming, but the mountain country did not appeal to him as did the rolling prairies of his youth and disposing of his business he came to Nebraska to settle in the Mitchell district where he lived but five years before passing away at the age of seventy-three. His wife died at the age of sixty-nine. Mr. Douglas had responded to the president's call for troops during the Civil War and served in the army during the last two years of that memorable conflict on the side of the Union, as an agent of the secret service. He was a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, belonged to the Methodist church and his political affiliations were with the Republican party. There are five children in the Douglas family: Maud, the wife of Joseph Harden, is deceased; George, a farmer in Iowa; John B.; Jessie, who died in childhood, and Myrtle, who married Harry Ashbrook. In Iowa the youthful years of John Douglas were passed. During the summer he was employed on the farm while the winter months he attended the country school, where he received a fundamental education that has served him well in his subsequent business life. His life was not that of the twentieth century boy, for his chores were not done before sundown and he did not have the use of the family automobile after supper to go to town or visit his young friends. In fact the farms of his day were operated on the eight hours plan, eight hours, in the forenoon and another eight hours in the afternoon, so while still a youth he had by experience fitted himself for farming in an independent way. He remained in Iowa until his twenty-eighth year when he decided to try his fortune in western Nebraska, locating in Scottsbluff county in 1909, where he purchased a relinquishment, proved up on it and was the owner of a fine farm He immediately began practical and excellent improvements. He was wise in taking up farming as all his training had been along that line and success crowned his efforts from the first. Since his arrival he has greatly enlarged his holdings and is now the owner of seven hundred and twenty acres, all in a high state of cultivation, seventy-four being under irrigation and it is but a question of time until the whole tract will be under ditch, while there are fine substantial farm buildings, a good farm home and modern equipment. Mr. Douglas is fortunately the possessor of just those qualities which are essential to success in the business of farming, and having had considerable experience in this field of endeavor, he is accounted one of the able and progressive men of his community. He has not been active in public affairs save as a good citizen, devoting his time and energy to the exacting cares of farming and stock-raising, and that the time has been well spent needs no mention when we learn of his extensive lands and comfortable fortune won from the soil in such a few years. In politics, Mr. Douglas is a supporter of the Republican party while his fraternal relations are with the Yeomen.
In 1897 was solemnized his marriage with Miss Bertha Kimbley, a native of Iowa, and they have five children: Claude, Harold, Warren, Hazel and Leo, all of whom are at home. Both Mr. and Mrs. Douglas enjoy a large circle of friends who delight in the good fortune that has come to them in their western home, and Scottsbluff county can well be proud of such a citizen.
WILLIAM T. SMITH. -- If you are familiar with the Mitchell valley, you have often heard the name of Smith. There the subject of this sketch, a prominent farmer, operates one of the most up-to-date farms. He exercises an energy and skill which put him well in the front among the food-raisers and producers of the county. Self acquired prosperity, liberal ideas, ideals expressed in promoting agriculture, education and simplicity of living as well as unquestioned public and private integrity, constitute the fundamentals upon which rests the structure of his life and a firm foundation they have proved.
William Smith is a son of the Old Dominion, and reflects the high ideas that have flourished in that state from its first settlements. He was born in Virginia February 19, 1874, the son of W. H. and Callie (Boone) Smith, the
former born there in 1844 and the mother at a somewhat later date. By trade the father was a shoemaker while in the eastern states though he was also the owner of a small tract of land which he cultivated. He was a man of vision and with a growing family on his hands decided that the only way to give them the proper start in life was to go west where there were greater. opportunities both for himself and his family. The family broke all the old home ties and started across the country for Colorado where the first new home was established; subsequently the Smiths came to Scottsbluff county, taking up a homestead in section 6, township 23-55. The farm homestead consisted of eighty acres of land on which the father still resides with his son William, who was the seventh child in a family of eight children. The: others were: Mary, the wife of J. D. Whitworth, now deceased; Minnie, the wife of William T. W. Smith, a farmer in Colorado; Effie, who married J. V. Striker, a farmer of Sioux county; Laura M., who resides in California; Callie M., married B. Kirks and also resides in California; Pearl, married Clyde Elliott, a farmer near Mitchell, and E. W., a farmer of Sioux county.
William received an excellent elementary education in the public schools of Virginia, which has proved of great benefit to. him in business since he became independent. He has lived in this section for a decade and during that time has won an enviable place in the esteem and hearts of his many friends, and acquaintances. He became a resident of the Mitchell district in 1907, when he purchased a relinquishment of seventy-three acres. He at once began the development of his land, installed modern improvements of an attractive and useful character, erected substantial buildings, raised his land to a high state of cultivation, and as a result soon accumulated surplus capital which he invested in more land, this plan he has continued until today he owns one hundred and fifty acres of the finest farming land in the district known far and wide for its thriving agricultural properties. Nearly all the land is under irrigation and all will be within a short time. Mr. Smith has engaged in intensive farming, which has proved markedly successful for he is insured of fine crops with irrigation and wonderful climatic conditions of Scottsbluff county where sunshine is abundant throughout the year. He is a student of his vocation and as such has attained results far in advance of men who have not believed or adopted modern agricultural methods.
1906 marks a happy years in the Smith home for it was then that Mr. Smith was united in marriage with Miss Fannie Dillon, a daughter of the Old Dominion, who has brought to her western home many of the beautiful customs and traditions of Virginia. Seven children have come to this happy family: Ralph, and Ethel V. are at home; Irene, is deceased; Howard, and Helen, twins; Myrtle and Zelpha also are still members of the family circle.
Mr. Smith is a member of the Democratic party and is proud of the record it made during the war; he is not an office seeker but has always displayed a lively and intelligent interest in local, state and national affairs. His fraternal affiliations are with the Modern Woodmen of America while he and Mrs. Smith are helpful members of the Methodist Episcopal church.
CYRUS H. GODBEY.-- Among the prominent and progressive farmers and stock-raisers of Scottsbluff county, there are found many who make a specialty of certain departments of agricultural work, believing that in this way they reap the greatest amount of success from their labors, in that they are able to centralize their energies and attention upon one definite thing. In this class is found Cyrus Godbey, of the Mitchell valley, who, while he follows general farming to a certain extent, has for some years devoted his time to specialization in well bred stock. He is accounted one of the energetic and progressive men of his community and is among the early settlers in this locality he has won the confidence and respect of his business associates and friends.
Cyrus Godbey was born in Mahaska county, Iowa, December 10, 1870, the son of W. M. and Engeby (Ryan) Godbey. The father was a Hoosier, born in Indiana, who lived out the psalmist's "three score years and ten," as he passed away in 1913 aged eighty-four years, while the mother like her son was a native of Iowa, who was sixty-four when she died in 1909. For the last twelve years of their lives the parents made their home with their son C. H. Godbey.
During the early part of his young manhood the father was a Whig, but later in life became an independent voter, casting his ballot regardless of party lines and using his influence for the man he believed best fitted
to hold office regardless of whether be ran on a Democratic or Republican ticket.
The public schools of Buffalo county, Nebraska furnished Cyrus Godbey with his early educational training, and during the summer months he helped his father and brothers in the fields, while being trained in all the arts and methods of agriculture as practiced in that locality. His choice of an occupation when he reached mature years rested upon farming, and this he has followed in a methodical, careful and practical way, adopting modern methods whenever they have been proved to produce better results. Mr. Godbey remained in business in Buffalo county until 1900 when he determined to avail himself of the opportunity to secure land suitable for irrigation farther west and located in Scottsbluff county in the Mitchell valley in section 31, township 23-56, where he took up a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres, proved up on it and established his permanent home. When he first came to this locality the land was as yet virgin prairie and he turned the original sod to make it fertile and available to put in the seed for his first crop. Today Mr. Godbey conducts a general stock-raising industry in connection with his agricultural pursuits. From these operations he has been able to equip his farm with splendid improvements and contribute to all the war time days through which the country has, so lately passed. He and his wife are widely known and highly rated in the community. Their religious affiliations are with the Methodist Episcopal church of which Mrs. Godbey is a member. Mr. Godbey is a member of the Farmers' Union and a stockholder in the Farmers' Union store at Mitchell, while his fraternal affiliations are with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Modern Woodmen, the Rebeccas (sic) and he is of high standing in the Masonic fraternity, being a Thirty-second degree Mason. Mr. Godbey married, January 26, 1898, Miss Annie L. Hicks, a native of Virginia, a daughter of J. D. and Cornelia A. (Gibson) Hicks, both natives of Virginia. The father is living but the mother is deceased. There are three children in the family: James S., who was born in 1899; Elta, fourteen years of age, and Nettie in her eighth year, all of whom are at home, and their father says that every one of them is to be given advantage of every educational facility afforded by the district, county and state, as he is determined that they all shall have every avantage (sic) possible for success in life. Mr. Godbey is well informed on all social questions and current events, thinks for himself and exercises his franchise as his conscience dictates in local affairs.
WILLIAM JOSEPH SCHUMACHER. The Schumacher farm in the central part of Scottsbluff county, may be said to constitute one of the landmarks on which may be found evidence of almost every phase that has marked the progress of agricultural industry in this section during the past quarter of a century. This fine landed estate now comprises two thousand, one hundred and twenty acres--considerably over three sections--and includes the old homestead and family home on which the present owner located when he came to Nebraska. In addition to fulfilling its mission as a medium of financial profit, this farm property has been developed to a high state in which it compares most favorably with any other Scottsbluff county landed estate likewise accumulated through pioneer courage and determination. Some of the land marks the new era of agricultural activity in western Nebraska as two hundred acres are under irrigation, and it is the irrigated land that can be relied upon, year in and year out, to produce a big crop, for with the never failing sunshine of the middle west, assured water, properly cultivated soil, the seeds planted bring bountiful returns.
William Schmacher is a Canadian by birth, born in Grey county, Canada, March 3, 1876, the son of Martin and Mary C. (Wakeford) Schumacher, both Canadians, the former lived to be seventy-three years of age while the mother was seventy years old June 11, 1919, so that Mr. Schumacher may be said to come from a sturdy, long lived family. The father was a small landholder in his native country, who was engaged in general farming, which he conducted with considerable success. There were eight children in the family: Alexander, a cabinet maker in Canada; Mary Ann, the wife of Michael Schiestel; W. J., the subject of this review; George T., a farmer near Blackfoot, Idaho.; Margaret, the wife of Philo Gallup; Angeline, who, married William Preston, a ranchman of Montana; Walter, living on a farm in Banner county, and Sarah, the wife of John McCumpsey of Scottsbluff county.
W. J. Schumacher received in his youth the advantages, of the schools of his native land, and he early learned the lessons of practical toil. As he grew to maturity he selected the vocation of farming as a life work. Determined to avail himself of the
greater advantages that the irrigated land in the United States offered to the young men of ambition, in 1899, accompanied by his wife, he immigrated to this country and soon was located in Scottsbluff county. Like many another pioneer they settled on a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres in section 6, 22-56 township, after spending a period at Kimball, Nebraska, earlier in the year. A young man of twenty-three, Mr. Schumacher and his wife were not daunted by the great task before them. Locating amidst primitive surroundings, he and his devoted wife bravely fortified themselves for the trials and hardships that still were to be overcome in the Mitchell valley and though not as unfortunately placed as the settler of the seventies and eighties, they had to overcome many obstacles during the first years, but did not falter in courage, persistence or self reliance, with the result that they gradually made their way forward to the position of success and definite prosperity. As returns from his vigorous activities as an agriculturist and stock-raiser justified such action, Mr. Schumacher began adding to his original holdings until he has accumulated a section of fertile land, but that was not yet the goal of his desires and as the years passed he continued to add to his landed estate until today the Schumacher property is one of the largest tracts in the Panhandle, which is one of the most favored sections of Nebraska, commonly known as "The Garden Spot" of the west. From the first Mr. Schumacher erected good buildings on his farm and made other excellent improvements of a permanent order, and through his individual achievement, as well as his civil loyalty and liberality, he contributed his full share to the development and progress of his community and the county in general. Aside from the management of his farm properties Mr. Schumacher takes his share in the civic improvements of the county which are so closely related to its commercial success, for he is the superintendent of the Mitchell Irrigation District which supplies water to the farms of the Mitchell valley, the business and policies of the district have been well directed in his competent hands.
In politics, Mr. Schumacher is found aligned with the Republican party, and while he has no desire for the honors of public office, he gives efficient service to the public as a patriotic citizen should. Fraternally he is connected with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and is a Mason of high standing, having taken his Thirty-second degree.
In 1898 Mr. Schumacher married, in his native land, Miss Sarah Yeo, a Canadian. She died in Scottsbluff county, leaving a daughter, Mary Belle, the wife of Purl Campbell, a farmer of Scottsbluff; and for his second wife he married Mrs. Fannie Springer, a native of Nebraska. Mrs. Schumacher has a daughter by her former marriage, Retta, the wife of Glen Foreman.
HUGO PIEPER has identified himself most fully with the civic and material interests of Scottsbluff county, being one of the well known farmers and representative agriculturists living near Mitchell. He is not only a native son of the west but also of the Sunflower State, and has exemplified its progressive spirit in the varied activities that have brought to him a generous share of temporal prosperity. His parents, J. T. Pieper and Bertha (Yellick) Pieper, claim Germany as the land of their nativity, they are respectively fifty-nine and fifty-seven years of age. The father received his early educational advantages in his native country but being ambitious and with a great desire to gain more of the advantages obtainable in the New World, he immigrated to America when a young man of twenty-one years. Soon after reaching the shores of this land of freedom and promise he located at Hanover, Kansas, to become engaged in agricultural pursuits, to which he had been trained in the old country. He became the owner of land, which by industry and perseverance he brought to a high state of cultivation and from which he gained a comfortable fortune and now is spending the sunset years of his life in well earned enjoyment and ease. Mr. Pieper has ever taken a keen interest in civic affairs that concerned the wellfare (sic) of the community in which he has chosen to make his home for more than a quarter of a century, and though he has never aspired to public office, having devoted his energies to the cares of his business, he did consent to accept the duties of coroner of his county, well filling this position for eight years. Mr. Pieper thinks for himself but is a supporter of the Democratic party in nation wide questions. Brought up in the faith of the Roman Catholic church, he is a devout member of the congregation.
There were five children in the Pieper family, of which Hugo is the second oldest. The others were: T. H. Pieper, now thirty-one years of age; Hugo; Emil, twenty-six, on a farm; Hedwig, who is working at home in the bank, and Harry, twenty years of age, now employed on a farm in Scottsbluff county.
Hugo, as stated before, the second oldest member of the family, passed the period of his childhood and early youth under the sturdy and invigorating discipline of the home farm. The public schools of the Sunflower state afforded to Hugo his early educational advantages following which he was associated with his father in agricultural business until 1912, when he determined to become the master of his own fortunes, and came to Scottsbluff county, purchasing eighty acres of fine arable land with the water rights of the same, or as expressed in this locality "under ditch." He he (sic) began vigorously the agricultural and live stock enterprise that has brought to him ever increasing success with the passing years, and as his finances were augumented (sic) he began to study on the subject of modern intensive farming with the idea of gaining the greatest returns possible from the soil. He is a resourceful and progressive executive, being one of the first men of the community to use tractors for motive power in place of horses, and the increased production has justified this radical change in farm management.
While devoting his greatest energy to the direction of his business Mr. Pieper has not been unmindful of civic responsibilities. He is a member of the Roman Catholic church in which he was reared, being generous in its support. In a basic way he gives support to the Democratic party but in purely local affairs believes in electing the man best fitted for the office; his fraternal connections are with the Central States Yeomen, the C. M. B. A. and the Union Accident Society. In 1915, Mr. Pieper married Miss Clara Feckley, who was born in Knox county, Iowa, the daughter of Doris Feckley of Missouri. They have three children: Irene, Gladys and Lawrence, all of whom are at home.
T. H. PIEPER. -- As one of the exponents of most modern and scientific policies as, applied to farm industry, Mr. Pieper stands forth prominently as one of the distinctly representative and influential agriculturists and stock growers of Scottsbluff county. He is a member of a sterling transplanted German family that came to America to take advantage of the great opportunities that would be afforded their children in a new country and by his own energy and well directed policy he has made his way to the goal of success and prosperity. Mr. Pieper was born in Hanover, Washington county, Kansas, in 1887, the son of J. T. and Bertha (Yellick) Pieper both of whom were born in Germany and came to the United States thirty-eight years ago. In 1881 Kansas was not thickly populated and the sturdy vigorous Germans took up land, nothing daunted by the fact that they must break the virgin prairie to raise their first crops and live in a sod house until better living conditions could be afforded. Here the subject of this memoir was reared to manhood under the conditions and influences which marked the initiation of civic and industrial development in the Sunflower State, and thus he was more strongly fortified in mature years to carry on the important work which has made Scottsbluff county one of the opulent and attractive sections of western Nebraska. He received his education in the public schools of the community in which his youthful years were passed, at the same time assisting to reclaim a frontier farm, remaining to assist his father until reaching his legal majority. Being independent by nature the young man determined to engage in agricultural pursuits for himself, believing that this vocation was one best adapted to his tastes and in which he saw a great future. He believed in the great basic industries of agriculture and stock-raising, which have yielded substantial returns to this man of enterprise and good judgment. When twenty-seven years of age Mr. Pieper came to Nebraska, locating on land owned by his father in section 3, township 22-56, in 1914, where he has been a large feeder of hogs and sheep, and the prosperity that has attended his efforts, mark him as one of the vigorous and resourceful farmers of the precinct. Mr. Pieper's father bought this land about seven years ago at $125 an acre, he at first assisted his son in its development and today the men would refuse $300 an acre for it, showing that they were foresighted in their investment and well deserve the material prosperity which today crowns their achievment (sic). In 1910, Mr. Pieper married Miss Elizabeth Schneiderjans, a native of Kansas, the daughter of a farmer who owns a fine quarter section of land in that state. Two children have been born to, this union: Lucille, aged seven and Dorothy, a charming child of three.
Mr. Pieper is a member of the Democratic party and though he is a man who enjoys the respect and good will of his friends and associates he has manifested no ambition for public office, devotng (sic) his time strictly to business while always interested in any question pertaining to the uplifting of the community. He is a member of the Roman Catholic church and a liberal contributor to its support, while his fraternal affiliations are with the Yeomen and the C. M. B. A.
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