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ROBERT H. WILLIS.
trict twenty-eight, which contained eight counties, in 1898, served in 1899, and was re-elected in 1910 and 1912, which shows the esteem in which he is held in Dawes county and the district. He is a man of great executive ability and proved competent to fill every office to which he was elected or called. In 1919, Mr. Reynolds was elected mayor of Chadron, a city to which he had so largely contributed in its first settlement and organization. He is always ready to help in any movement for the benefit or development of the county or city and is a well known and well loved man in his city. Mr. Reynolds owns a quarter section of land near Belmont, Nebraska, and has a modern home in Chadron. For some years he has been actively engaged in the real estate business here, also carrying on loans and investments. He has a partner, Fred A. Hood; they have offices in the Citizens State Bank Building. Mr. Reynold's long association with the affairs of the county places him in a position to give his customers the greatest advantages in all real estate and land deals and he has a clientele that is not only satisfied but ever increasing.
During the World War Mr. Reynolds again took a front place in assisting its prosecution, as he was Fuel Administrator for Dawes county and took an active part in the work of the Red Cross. Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds are members of the Congregational church while he belongs to the Odd Fellows and is a Republican.
ROBERT H. WILLIS, whose identification with important public affairs in Morrill county has been long and continuous, is now chief of the Bureau of Irrigation Power and Drainage of the Department of Public works of the state of Nebraska. Mr. Willis was born at Cheyenne, Wyoming, March 22, 1869, the son of John G. and Cecelia J. (Beck) Willis. The father was born at Saratoga, New York, a son of Robert and Mary (Toner) Willis, the former of whom was born in Ireland and the latter in Scotland, both dying in the state of New York. The mother was born in Iowa. Her father, William Beck was a native of Scotland, who came to the United States, worked in the west as a miner and freighter and died in Montana. Robert Henry was the first born of his parents' seven children, the others being as follows: Cecelia Mary, the wife of William B. T. Belt, president of the Northwestern Group Bell Telephone Company, Omaha; William H., is in the implement business at Bridgeport; Blanche I., the wife of F. W. Smith, a merchant at Minatare, Nebraska; Edith, L., is an Episcopal Church missionary in North Dakota; Beatrice, who resides with her parents; and Margaret J., who teaches in an Indian school in South Dakota.
John G. Willis enlisted from Illinois for service during the Civil war, serving four years, under two enlistments, in company K Seventeenth Illinois cavalry. After the war he came west, located first at Omaha, then went to Cheyenne, Wyoming, was married there and started the first general store of the town. He continued in the mercantile business at Cheyenne until 1894 and was a leading citizen and as a member of the first city council was sworn in by the adjutant-general of the United States army of the Territory of Wyoming. He is active in Masonry, belongs to the Consistory and is a Shriner.
Robert H. Willis attended school at Omaha and later received a technical education as civil engineer at Rensselaer Institute, New York, from which he was graduated in 1890. His first important work was done in connection with the city engineer's office of Omaha. For two years he was associated with Douglas county engineer's office, then he spent a year with the Union Pacific railway at Pocatello, Idaho, after which private contracts engaged him until 1895, when he was appointed a water commissioner of Morrill and Scottsbluff counties, in which office he continued until 1910. He then became water superintendent of District No. 1 and now has charge of all irrigation work in Nebraska. He came to old Cheyenne county in September, 1894, locating at old Camp Clark, and since 1901 his home has been at Bridgeport. He has been identified with many of the developing agencies in this section and is one of the widely kown (sic) men of the Panhandle. With other enterprises of merit with which he has been connected, Mr. Willis owned and conducted the Bridgeport Blade, the first newspaper issued here, for five years.
In December, 1891, Mr. Willis was united in marriage to Miss Carrie Lee Melius, a native of Rensselaer, New York, who died September 14, 1911, leaving one daughter, Cornelia E., who was born in September, 1893. She resides in New York and is connected with the State Industrial Commission. On January 6, 1914 Mr. Willis was married to Miss Anna E. Hascall, who was born at Grand Island, Nebraska. They are members of the Episcopal church. Mr. Willis was early instructed by his father in the principles of the Republi-
can party and they have always seemed to, him just, wise and adequate for the governing of the United States. He is a Mason and belongs to the Lodge of Perfection at Alliance, Nebraska.
JAMES H. BANKS, was born August 29, 1864, near DeWitt, Clinton county, Iowa, one of a family of nine children of David I. and Mary (Smith) Banks, the father being a native of York State and the mother a native of Pennsylvania.
Growing to manhood near State Center, Marshall county, Iowa, he attained a good practical education at the district school which was attended during the winter terms, working on the home farm during the summer; James' first financial venture was to contract with a neighbor to hoe broomcorn at fifty cents a day when not occupied at home. After becoming of age he farmed for himself two years; and then started a furniture store in his home town, in which business he has been identified practically ever since. Coming to Nebraska in the early nineties Mr. Banks first located at York, becoming associated in the furniture business there and later at Fremont, Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska.
Mr. Banks was married to Miss Pearl Mann August 29, 1901, at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. Miss Mann was born in Cleveland, Ohio, being a daughter of Horace and Priscilla (Cook) Mann and related by marriage to President McKinley, Mr. and Mrs. Banks being at the Buffalo Exposition with him two days previous to the assassination. A son James E. was born to them, who at this time is being educated in Chicago, Mrs. Banks having died in 1903.
Coming to Chadron in the fall of 1912, Mr. Banks became manager and part owner of the Chadron Furniture Company. For a number of years he was secretary of the Nebraska Furniture Dealers Association and a member of the executive committee of the National Association and has for a number of years been a familiar patron of the leading furniture markets. With a thorough knowledge of the business and of home needs, under his efficient management the Chadron Furniture Company has grown from a small stock in one room to one that occupies six times the original floor space, being the largest home furnishing establishment in northwest Nebraska, and is considered one of the substantial business houses of Chadron. Mr. Banks has further verified his faith in the future development of the city by the purchase of the two story and basement brick building occupied by his company, located at the corner of Second and Morehead streets, together with other real estate, and he is identified with other commercial interests here and in Crawford, Nebraska, all of which afford employment to a number of heads of families which help materially in the making of a city. He has always responded loyally and liberally to every progressive movement where the aim has been for the betterment to the home town; is an honored citizen and a loyal M. W. A.
BENJAMIN A. BREWSTER was born in Omaha, Nebraska, June 1, 1870, the son of George W. Brewster, born in Cleveland, Ohio, and Elizabeth (Barton) Brewster, born in Mason, Illinois. Benjamin was the second child in a family of three children. His father was a publisher and printer, publishing the first agricultural paper in Nebraska, at Omaha in 1871, and Benjamin has the bound volumes of this paper published while his father was in charge, from 1871 to 1883.
Benjamin Brewster was reared in Omaha until about fourteen years of age. The first money he remembers earning was setting type for his father, for which he received fifty cents, and Ben says he has been sticking type ever since. He went through the common schools in Omaha and in Oakland, Nebraska, where his father moved in 1882, and established the Oakland Independent. The father then went to Blain (sic) county, Nebraska, to start a town in the sandhills, believing the B. & M. railroad intended to build into this country, and his intention was to form a county about
twenty-four miles square and have the town of Brewster the county seat. He succeeded in establishing the county all right and the town at the present time, 1921, is still the county seat; but the railroad has not materialized.
Benjamin's father was a Civil War veteran, serving in the Eleventh Illinois Infantry during the war, and was wounded at the battle of Shiloh. When he went to Blain (sic) county in 1885, he took a tree claim and pre-emption and built the regulation sod house, and established the Brewster News, when this county was unorganized territory of Sioux County. At that time there was not a house within three miles. Mr. Brewster is credited with having done more than any other man in putting Brewster and Blain (sic) county on the map.
Benjamin A. Brewster went through businness (sic) college and together with his brother, Win F. Brewster, took over the Oakland Independent, running the same till 1890. He then went to Deadwood, South Dakota, and went to work on the Daily Pioneer as a printer; stayed there until 1891 and then went back to Omaha and worked at his trade until 1893. He then bought the Ord Journal, a Democratic paper which he run about a year, and then went to Craig, Nebraska, and established the Craig Times, which he sold in 1885. He then went back to Omaha and worked at his trade until 1897, when he went to Deadwood, South Dakota, and engaged in the newspaper work about two years, then went to Lincoln and was with the Newspaper Union until 1901. In 1901, he went to Shoshone, Idaho, and edited the Shoshone Journal, in partnership with F. R. Gooding, present United States Senator from Idaho,. He remained here two years, returning to Crawford, Nebraska, and establishing the Crawford Courrier (sic) in 1905, which he run for about a year, and then went to Amarillo, Texas., and ran the Amarillo Daily Panhandle, where he remained until he came to Chadron, Nebraska, and established the Chadron Chronicle in 1909, which he published and edited until October, 1920.
During his residence in Chadron he ran on the Democratic ticket for State Senator of Nebraska, from the twenty-eighth senatorial district, and was defeated by a small majority. He was appointed postmaster under Woodrow Wilson, March 23, 1916, and re-appointed June 4, 1920, and still holds the appointment at the present time.
Mr. Brewster was married October 11, 1908, in Deadwood, South Dakota, to Ida Austin, who was born in Texas. She was the daughter of William Austin, born in Mississippi, and Nannie (Lewis) Austin, born in Tennessee, of an old southern family. Her ancestors were among the large slave holders of the south. Mrs. Brewster is the eldest in a family of six children--three girls and three boys. She finished her education at the Mary Nash School at Sherman, Texas.
Mr. Brewster owns a modern home and business house combined, on Bordeaux and Second Streets, besides a lot of valuable property in Chadron, Nebraska. He is an Odd Fellow, Modern Woodman and an Elk, and one of the live wires of his little city.
JAMES R. SCHOOLEY, one of Banner county's progressive farmers and ranchmen, is also one of her worthy and dependable citizens. He belongs to a very prominent pioneer family of this region and has lived in the county since he was nineteen years of age. He was born in Neosho county, Kansas, October 30, 1870.
The parents of Mr. Schooley were Levi and Mary J. (Ellis) Schooley, natives of Illinois. For some years prior to coming to Nebraska, the family lived in Kansas and the father was a farmer in Neosho county. On July 25, 1886, he homesteaded in Banner county, seven miles southeast of Harrisburg, and resided on his place for eighteen years. He was then elected
county judge and moved into Harrisburg. He was honored with re-election and served three more terms on the bench, and afterward, for many years was a justice of the peace. For several years before moving to Harrisburg, he had been road supervisor of Lone Spring precinct. He was a man of such sterling integrity that he enjoyed the confidence of every citizen, although he was elected to different offices on the Republican ticket. Failing health caused Judge Schooley to remove in 1902, to Palisade, Colorado, in the hope that a change of climate would restore him to health, but it failed to do so and his death occurred there January 24, 1908. His widow resides at Fruita, in Mesa county, Colorado. Of their five children, James R. is the second of the four survivors, namely: Jennie, the wife of A. L. Smith, who lives at Palisade, Colorado; Sidonia, the wife of Frank Lane, of Fruita, Colorado; and Francis Nathan, who is in business at McGrew, Nebraska, married Emma E. Campbell. Judge Schooley was a member of the Christian church, to which religious body his widow also belongs.
James R. Schooley attended the public schools in Kansas, somewhat irregularly on account of delicate health, and he was by no means robust when he accompanied his parents across country in a big covered wagon, to Banner county. His experience may, perhaps, be compared with that of the late beloved, great statesman and patriot, Theodore Roosevelt, who, under like impairment of health, came to the great west and found healing here. Mr. Schooley soon began to improve, and considering his present heavy business responsibilities, and the able way in which he is handling his various undertakings, good health is one of his best assets. He has never been entirely separated from Banner county, although he has had interests near McGrew and Minatare, but since March, 1919, he has operated his own farm with vigor and profit and is making plans for extension of his industries.
Mr. Schooley was marred March 15, 1899 to Miss Sarah J. Harshman. Her parents were Theodore and Rebecca (Thompson) Harshman, for many years residents of Minatare. The mother of Mrs. Schooley died at Albany, Oregon, May 26, 1916, but her burial was at Minatare. The father survives and lives in Idaho. Mr. and Mrs. Schooley have two children: Theodore, who lives at McGrew; and Levi, who lives at home, and a step-daughter, Ethel R., whose father, John R. Lendrum, was accidentally drowned in the Platte River, July 10, 1891. She is the wife of Cecil Prettyman, of Broken Bow, Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Schooley attend the Christian church. In politics, like his father, Mr. Schooley has always been a staunch Republican.
SHADRACH PETERMAN, who has been a farmer and ranchman ever since coming to Banner county, for many years before locating in Nebraska, was actively identified with the lumber business. He was born at Nordmont, Sullivan county, Pennsylvania, February 3, 1876.
The parents of Mr. Peterman were James and Hannah J. (Hunter) Peterman, the former of whom was a native of Columbia and the latter of Sullivan county, Pennsylvania. The mother still resides at Nordmont, but the father died January 19, 1896. Of their ten children, Shadrach is the only one living in Nebraska. The father was a farmer and lumber dealer and was influential in Democratic political circles in Sullivan county. For many year he served in such offices as school director, road overseer and supervisor.
Shadrack Peterman attended school at Nordmont until fourteen years old, then started out for himself, finding employment with lumber companies, with one of which he continued for seven years. Lumbering is hard work and there are many accidents in the woods from one of which Mr. Peterman suffered, which resulted in a broken hip. That closed his career in the lumber industry as heavy labor was no longer possible. Mr. Peterman then came to Nebraska and remained at Kimball for a short time before coming to Banner county. He worked for about four years for farmers and then bought land and went into the business of breeding Shire horses. He has done well in his investments and is looked upon as one of the county's substantial and reliable men. He recently sold two hundred and forty acres of land but has a tract of eighty four acres in Pennsylvania and his ranch in section twenty-two, town nine, Banner county. In politics, Mr. Peterman is a Democrat, and in national matters is loyal to party candidates, but in local affairs votes according to his own judgment. He belongs to the order of Knights of Pythias.
THEODORE F. GOLDEN, president of the Farmers State Bank of Crawford, and owner of a large body of fine, irrigated land in Dawes county, has been a resident of Nebras-
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