NEGenWeb Project
Resource Center, On-Line Library




1910, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Stone to Miss Reta H. Williams, of Scottsbluff. Mrs. Stone was born at Creston, Iowa, and came with her widowed mother and her brother to Scottsbluff in 1902, having been graduated in the local high school in May, 1910, a few months prior to her marriage. She is a daughter of Frank J. and Catherine (Cluck) Williams, the former a native of Illinois and the latter of Pennsylvania, their marriage having been solemnized in Iowa. Mr. Williams, who was a commercial traveler out from Omaha, died at the age of forty years, and his widow later removed with her children to Scottsbluff, and she is now the wife of Rev. Allen Chamberlain, pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church at North Platte, this state. Mr. and Mrs. Stone have a winsome little daughter, Ellen Ruth, who was born in the year 1911.

    PETER NELSON. -- Among the representative, citizens of Kimball, there are few better known perhaps than Peter Nelson, who has been a resident of Nebraska for thirty-six years and of Kimball county but a few years less. He has accumulated an average fortune and has become a man whose business judgment is consulted in many matters of public importance. Should Mr. Nelson be questioned as to the way in which he has managed to be so successful, in all probability he would answer, as have the greatest of social economists, "work and economy form the basis of prosperity."
   Peter Nelson was born in Denmark, February 10, 1862, one of nine children born to Nels and Anna (Larson) Nelson, and one of three to reach maturity. His parents died in 1887. In 1883 he came to the United States, located in Kearney county, Nebraska, worked there as a farm hand for two years, then came to Kimball county and homesteaded five miles north of Dix. He lived on his homestead and tree claim until he had proved up on 320 acres, then went to work on the railroad, three years later coming to Kimball. Here, in 1894, he purchased a dray and went into the hauling business, working early and late, and by 1904 was prepared to invest $250 in a tract of sixty-seven acres that lay within the city limits. The purchase of this tract not only demonstrated faith in the future of Kimball, but was a mark of business foresight that is characteristic of Mr. Nelson. This land is now valued at $200 an acre, and promises to be one of the city's handsomest residential sections. He has jut completed laying out four blocks in town lots, and for the choicest of these he will probably realize more than he paid for the entire original tract. His own handsome residence stands here. When Mr. Nelson first took possession of this land he raised a few horses, but soon realized the beter (sic) profits in dairying and supplies dairy products to the most of Kimball. Mr. Nelson also owns 1120 acres that he is farming in a small way, holding the property mainly as an investment and ready to sell when a satisfactory offer is made.
   In 1897 Mr. Nelson was married first to a daughter of Peter and Sofie Larson, who came to Kimball county from Denmark, and March 20, 1890, homesteaded and took a tree claim ten miles south and one mile east of Dix. In 1910 Mr. Larson was killed by a stroke of lightning while stacking hay in his barn, during an electric storm, this being the second tragic death in the family, as Mrs. Nelson had been accidentally killed by a railroad train, May 8, 1905. Mrs. Larson resides at Kimball. To Mr. Nelson's first marriage two sons and two daughters were born, namely: Paul E., Harold E., Mable E., and Helen E. Both sons were educated at Kimball and both entered military service during the great war. Paul was sent to the training school at Camp Sherman, Chillicothe, Ohio, in the 47th Aero Squad, Signal Corps, then was transferred to the 163rd, was sent to France in August, 1918, and was honorably discharged July 3, 1919, and returned home. Harold E. was in training for seven weeks at Bellevue, then was honorably discharged because of the end of the war.
   In 1906 Mr. Nelson was married to the sister of his first wife and they have had children as follows: Myrtle, Minerva, Ralph, Stanley, and Iris and Ira, twins. Mr. and Mrs. Nelson are members of the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Nelson has served on the town board of Kimball.

   MORSE P. CLARY is another of the representative men of Garden county to whom are justly to be ascribed pioneer honors in the great Nebraska Panhandle, to which this history is dedicated. He came to this county while it was still a part of Cheyenne county, his original land claims later were to be found in the new county of Deuel, and finally became a part of the still newer county of Garden. He has been continuously identified with agricultural and live-stock industry on his original land claims since the year 1886 and has been a leader in community thought and action. He is now president of the Farmers' State Bank of Lewellen but still gives a general supervision of his farm enterprise.



   Morse Powell Clary has ample reason to be proud of his American ancestral line, for he is a scion of a family that was founded in this country in the early colonial era. His father, Dennis B. Clary, was born in the city of Baltimore, Maryland, and was of the fifth generation in line of direct descent from the original American ancetsor (sic) of the name; the latter having accompanied Lord Baltimore's first colony from England and having taken up a "tomahawk claim" of about three thousand acres of land, twenty miles distant from Baltimore. This property has in part continued in the possession of the family to the present day, and four cousins of the subject of this sketch still reside on the ancestral place. In 1866, was erected in this locality the historic Strawbridge Church, notable as being the first Methodist Church edifice built in America. The original structure, of sturdy oak logs, had no doors and no windows at the start, but in this unfinished condition it was used for religious services. The ancient building remained as a landmark in Maryland for many years.
   Morse P. Clary was born at Quincy, Adams county, Iowa, October 20, 1858, a date. that indicates conclusively that his parents were pioneer settlers in that section of the Hawkeye state. He is a son of Dennis B. and Rachel M. (Cooper) Clary, the former of whom was born in Baltimore, Maryland, as previously noted, and the latter of whom was born in Indiana, her father having been a native of Scotland and her mother of Indiana.
   The subject of this review acquired his early education in the public schools of Indianola, Iowa, and during the first fourteen years of his independent career he was engaged in farm enterprise in Warren county, that state. In 1886, he came to western Nebraska and became a pioneer settler in what is now Garden county--at that time a part of old Cheyenne county. Here he took up homestead and tree claims, about five and a half miles from the present village of Lewellen, and here he not only reclaimed his farm land from the virgin prairie but also made good improvements in the matter of buildings and other accessories, and became one of the successful agriculturists and stock-growers of the county. He still owns the old farm property, which comprises two thousand acres, but is now living semi-retired in Ash Hollow.
   Mr. Clary has been influential in community affairs under the three different county governments, Cheyenne, Deuel and Garden--and that without changing his place of abode. He served two terms as county commissioner of Deuel county--1892-9--and was county commissioner of Garden county from 1910 to 1915. Under these conditions it is apparent that he had much to do with the progressive movements and official agencies that were potent in the civic and material advancement of the community in which he has lived and wrought to worthy ends. In 1915, Mr. Clary became one of the organizers and incorporators of the Farmers' State Bank of Lewellen, and he has served continuously as a director, of this substantial institution, to the presidency of which he was elected in January, 1919.
   In politics Mr. Clary is a staunch Republican; he is a charter member of Oshkosh Lodge No. 286, Ancient Free & Accepted Masons, at the county seat, and his wife holds membership in the Methodist Episcopal church.
   At Indianola, Iowa, on January 17, 1881, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Clary to Miss Louisa C. McNaught, a daughter of Ezekiel and Roxanna (Durand) McNaught, her father had been a blacksmith by trade but became a prosperous farmer in Iowa; he was a gallant soldier of the Union in the Civil war, as a member of a regiment of Illinois Volunteer Infantry. In conclusion of this brief sketch is given record concerning the children of Mr. and Mrs. Clary: March D., who is a prosperous farmer in the Lewellen neighborhood, supplemented his common-school education by a course in the Grand Island Commercial College. He married Miss Nora West, of Omaha. May R., who received the advantages of the University of Nebraska, is the wife of Jess Minchall, of Broadwater, Morrill county; Frank L., who is now living in the city of Omaha, served as a member of company K of the Coast Artillery during the World war; he was educated at Fremont College. Josie J., who completed a thorough course of study at Fremont College, is principal of the public schools of Bingham, Sheridan county, at the time of this writing, in the winter of 1919-20. Nona, who was afforded the advantages of the Nebraska State Normal School at North Platte, is now the wife of Ray Brown, of Lewellen. Ray S., who is now home, saw nine months of service in France during the late World war, having been bandmaster with rank of sergeant, with the One Hundred and Ninth Engineers, his assignment having been to Company I, of this command. Oren V., who profited duly by the advantages of the public schools of Lewellen, is still a member of the home circle, and Cora M., the youngest of the children, is still attending school in her home village.



   JAMES C. FOSTER, a pioneer ranchman and venerable and honored citizen of Garden county, where he is now living retired in the city of Oshkosh, has been a resident of Nebraska for more than forty years, and his memory and experience compass much of the stirring activities that marked the pioneer history of this commonwealth.
   Mr. Foster was born in Jefferson county, Pennsylvania, March 5, 1847, and though he has passed the psalmist's span of three score years and ten, he retains the vigor and optimistic outlook that come as the heritage of right living and right thinking, during the course of an earnest and useful career. Mr. Foster is a son of Daniel and Elmira Antoinette (Williams) Foster, both natives of the state of New York and representatives of families founded in America in the colonial era of our national history. Daniel Foster was reared and educated in the old Empire state and as a young man he removed to Pennsylvania, where he secured a tract of heavily timbered land in Jefferson county, and instituted the reclamation of a farm. He was captain in a cavalry command in Pennsylvania, when the state militia was kept in training largely for the repelling of the Indians. His father and brothers were killed and scalped by the Indians, who took his mother prisoner at the same time. She was held in captivity fourteen years, and her release was effected by her son Daniel, father of the subject of this review. This remarkable woman, who endured with fortitude her experience as a captive, died about eight months prior to the time of her one hundredth birthday anniversary. James C. Foster was reared to manhood in the old Keystone state, where he received the advantages of the common schools of the period, and whence he and his two brothers, Hiram T. and William M., went forth as valiant young soldiers of the Union when the Civil war was precipitated on the nation. Hiram T. was killed in battle, about one week prior to the surrender of General Lee. William M. was captured by the enemy and was held for some time in the historic old Libby prison, whose name is odious in the record of the war between the north and the south. He finally made his escape from the prison, largely through the aid given him by a negro.
   James C. Foster was twenty-four years of age when the dark cloud of civil war cast its pall over the national horizon, and he forthwith manifested his patriotism by enlisting as a private in a company of Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, with which he participated in many engagements and lived up to the full tension of the great conflict. In later years he has perpetuated the more gracious associations of his military career by retaining affiliation with the Grand Army of the Repubilc (sic).
   After the war Mr. Foster was for some time identified with the lumber business in Pennsylvania, but in August, 1875, he left his native state and set forth for the west. On the 11th of that month he arrived at Columbus, Platte county, this state, and for eight years was engaged in farming on the Pawnee Indian reservation.
   After his marriage he continued to farm four years, and then came with his family to the western part of the state, in 1887, and took up a homestead thirty miles east of Alliance. He developed and improved a productive farm and to the active management of the place he continued to apply himself for twenty-eight years. He then sold the property, which had become valuable and to the area of which he had added, and it was at this juncture in his career that he retired and established his residence at Oshkosh, where he and his wife delight to extend the hospitality of their pleasant home to their wide circle of friends. In politics Mr. Foster is found arrayed as a staunch supporter of the principles of the Republican party.
   The year 1882, recorded the marriage of Mr. Foster to Miss Carrie M. Douglass, who was born and reared in Wisconsin, and came to Nebraska when she was eighteen years of age. She shared with her husband in the pioneer experiences in western Nebraska, and their ideal companionship continues as shadows of their lives begin to lengthen from the golden west. In conclusion is given brief record concerning their children: Mrs. Nettie Miller, died in 1917; Mrs. Rosella Ross, resides in Wyoming; Mrs. Mary Lindley is a resident of Lakeside, Sheridan county, Nebraska, as is also Mrs. Maude Hyland; William M., who is now living at Oshkosh, was one of the gallant young men who served with the American Expeditionary Forces in France during the progress of the World war, having been with his command in France for a period of one year; and James C., Jr. remains at home.

   RICHARD CLARK, who has prestige as one of the pioneer farmers and stockmen of Garden county, is the owner of a fine farm property of 320 acres, three and one-half miles northwest of the village of Lewellen,



and is known and valued as one of the sterling citizens and successful agriculturists and stock-growers of Garden county. He was born in Butler county, Iowa, December 12, 1873, and on other pages of this work, in the sketch of the career of his brother, Walter Clark, is given ample review of the family history. Richard Clark was the fourth in order of birth in a family of five children, and concerning the others a brief record may consistently be entered: William P. is a resident of Lewellen, Garden county; Mrs. Mary Cushman resides in the state of Michigan; Walter is a resident of Oshkosh, judicial center of Garden county, Nebraska, and Mrs. Birdie Anderson resides at Ogallala, Keith county.
   Richard Clark acquired his early education in the schools of the Hawkeye state and was a lad of about eleven years when, in 1885, he came with his brother Walter to Nebraska. They made the trip in a box car and left their palatial quarters upon arriving at Ogallala. In Keith county Richard found employment on a farm, and in a service of nine months he received a compensation of seven dollars a month. Finally he came to what is now Garden county and joined his parents, who had taken a farm homestead on the table southwest of Lewellen. He remained at the parental home until 1899, and in the meanwhile availed himself of the advantages of the public schools of the locality, besides doing his share in connection with the development and other work of the home farm. In 1899 he purchased the half section of land which constitutes his present well improved farm estate, and here he has not only been successful in his operations as an agriculturist and as a breeder and grower of cattle and hogs, but has also erected modern buildings and made other improvements that mark his property as one of the model farms of Garden county. His farm is well irrigated and he is one of the substantial stockholders of the Blue Creek Irrigation Company. His political allegiance is given to the Democratic party; his wife is an active communicant of the Grace Lutheran church at Lewellen, and Mrs. Clark is an appreciative and popular member of the Woman's Club of Lewellen. The attractive home of Mr. and Mrs. Clark is known for its generous and gracious hospitality, and it is a favored resort for their wide circle of friends.
   On the 20th of March, 1900, was solemnied (sic) the marriage of Mr. Clark to Miss Emma Paisley, of Concordia, Kansas. Mrs. Clark was born in Nebraska and is a daughter of John H. and Addie Paisley, both of whom were born and reared in Iowa, where their marriage was solemnied (sic) and whence they came to Nebraska, where the death of Mr. Paisley occurred. Mrs. Paisley later became the wife of John W. Wilson, who likewise was born in Iowa and who represented that state as a valiant soldier of the Union during the Civil War. Mr. and Mrs. Wilson finally removed from Iowa to Kansas, and he became a successful farmer near Concordia, that state. Mr. and Mrs. Clark have one child, Ivor Cecil, who was born in the year 1901.

    MARTIN BRISTOL, a well known real estate dealer of Mitchell who has been engaged in commercial life in the Panhandle for many years and is known here and at Gering as a successful business man, was born near Peoria, Illinois, November 21, 1860, the son of John E. and Anna (Martin) Bristol. The former was a native of New York. The family originally came to America from England about 1860 (sic). The mother was born in Kentucky. John Bristol settled in Illinois in 1827, and was an officer in the company commanded by President Lincoln during the Black Hawk War. He received a land warrant for his services at that time.
   Martin Bristol was reared on his father's farm, and attended the public schools until his sixteenth year when he was apprenticed to a carpenter to learn the trade. The apprenticeship lasted five years and when completed, he accepted a position with the Rock Island railroad as a carpenter. during his services with that road, Mr. Bristol contracted asthma. In 1886, he came to North Platte, Nebraska, for his health and within ten days was able to get around and soon began to work at his trade. He took up a homestead in the Gering valley, four miles south of the present town of Gering and remained there until 1888. He built the first log house in Gering for Dr. Franklin and another for Frack (sic) Garlock in April, 1887. That was the beginning of the town. Mr. Bristol was busily engaged as a carpenter until 1890, when he took a trip through Utah, Colorado, and Kansas, working in different towns as he went along. In 1893, he returned to Gering, where he built many of the buildings of the growing town. Coming to Mitchell in 1901, Mr. Bristol took charge of a lumber yard for Car & Neff; from 1902 to 1903, he clerked in a hardware store here then spent two years as

Prior page
General index
Next page

   © 1999, 2000, 2001 for NEGenWeb Project by Pam Rietsch, Ted & Carole Miller