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MR. AND MRS. OSCAR O'BANNON AND SON.
ty. It is needless to say that Mr. Webber has been the architect of his own fortune.
Charles V. Webber was born in Pennsylvania, August 10, 1874, the only child of W. M. and Jennie (Heffley) Webber. His young mother died when he was an infant. She was born at Winita, Indian Territory, but of her people he knows nothing, nor anything of his father's people. Practically an orphan boy, he made his home with friendly people until he could provide for himself. He began to work as a newsboy and through early youth sold newspapers along the Ohio river, at Wheeling and at Parkersburg. After spending one winter in a lumber camp in the Virginia mountains, he decided to try his fortune in the west. He was only seventeen years old when he reached Chicago, Illinois, and later he went to work on a farm near Aurora, Illinois, where he met with kindness and appreciation. He was married on February 15, 1898, to Miss Mary A. Milton, who died in Banner county, July 4, 1919. She was a daughter of John and Helen (McConicle) Milton, former residents of Illinois, now deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Webber had two children, Harry and Peryl, both of whom reside with the father.
Mr. Webber and family came to Nebraska from Illinois, in 1904; he filed on a claim near Hull and the family lived on that homestead for five years, during this time Mr. Webber leased several sections and ranged cattle on the land, later filed on three quarter section at Eagle's Nest and still owns that valuable property, still later buying two more sections. He then leased land in Garden county but on finding conditions uncomfortable for a home, bought a lease on the A. H. Pierson ranch in Banner county and still resides there. He does an extensive business in buying and selling cattle and rents pasture land to others. His business success had been remarkable and considering his early handicaps, quite unusual. Mr. Webber is widely known and much respected. He has never desired any public office, his business interesting him to a greater extent. He is a Republican of many years' standing.
OSCAR O. O'BANNON. -- The qualities of adaptability, common sense, persistence and good judgment have prevailed in the energetic life of Oscar O'Bannon, winning for him an enviable place in the business circles of Alliance, where since 1908, he has been a member of the firm of O'Bannon Brothers, operators in real estate and now two of the largest producers of potatoes in the upper Platte valley. Their property in the Alliance district may well serve as an example of good management and practical results in farming, as they are among the most progressive agriculturists in Box Butte county. The O'Bannon brothers are essentially self-made men and may well look upon their success with pride, as the present large fortunes are the work of their own brains and hands as they accumulated all their property by their own unaided efforts and have builded (sic) solidly and well. Oscar O'Bannon was born near Mattoon, Illinois, June 5, 1876, the son of Oscar F. and Sarah (Colson) O'Bannon, the father being a congenial son of the Blue Grass state, who had all the delightful charm of the typical Kentuckian, while the mother was born in Ohio. Oscar was the third in the family of six children and as his father was a farmer in Illinois, he spent his early childhood in that state, early learning self reliance and thrift and able to take and give and look out for himself as all children in a large family do. When the boy was about seven years old the family came west to Nebraska, locating in Seward county where Oscar's boyhood days were spent. He was sent to the nearest district school where he gained a good practical education and as soon as his age and years permitted began to assist his father in the work on the home farm. While still a small boy he earned his first money by trapping mink, as the country was little settled and game plentiful. From that time to the present he has always been a great hunter and fisherman and when William Jennings Bryan was running for president the first time a banquet was given in his honor at the Lincoln Hotel, Lincoln, Mr. O'Bannon furnished four hundred quail, which shows his prowess as a huntsman. All his educational advantages were obtained in Seward county and as the father had poor health, Oscar remained at home, really having the active management of the place until his marriage which occurred on December 31, 1901, at which time he was united in wedlock at Atkinson, Nebraska, with Miss Emma Schrader, a native daughter of Seward county, whose parents were August and Johanna Schrader, the father being a native of Germany who became one of the early pioneer settlers of Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. O'Bannon have one child, Charles Oscar, a fine boy of seven years. After his marriage Mr. O'Bannon was engaged in farming for about six years, then came to Alliance in 1908, for he had a natural talent for business, which had made him so successful in carrying on his farming. Though his capital was
small at the time he landed in Box Butte county, this did not deter him from at once launching out into the real estate business and it seems that fortune has smiled upon his efforts most graciously. This, he claims, is due largely to the aid and support he received from his capable wife. She is an excellent manager of the home and when difficulties arose Mr. O'Bannon often talked them over with her, obtaining timely and wise council with regard to investments and sales. From first locating in this county Mr. O'Bannon has carred (sic) out the policy of buying all the land he handled, and rarely works on a commission basis, thus giving the greatest satisfaction to his clients.
From time to time he has bought land in association wth (sic) his brother, which they have held for their own agricultural business until today they have six well improved farms, within three miles of Alliance, consisting of about fifteen hundred acres of the finest arable land in this section. It is especially well adapted to raising potatoes, and that is the use to which they have placed it. In 1907, the O'Bannon brothers responded to the president's call for increased production by raising them by the carload--and we might say trainload--lots. That year they realized a profit of $333 an acre from the land they had planted to the tubers. This shows what may be accomplished by good management when men with good heads, who are willing to study farming can obtain by buying cheap land in Box Butte county. The two brothers are partners in their varied lines of endeavor, not only do they raise but they also buy potatoes in the surrounding district. In 1914, they shipped four hundred and fifty car loads, having seventeen cars on one train. The property they now hold in the Alliance district is worth at a most conservative estimate $150,000. In addition to this they have a large business building, enormous warehouses for handling the potatoes and have built a series of caves for storing them which adds about $50,000 to the value of the estate. In Alliance they run a general feed, flour and coal business which in itself would be about all that one firm could handle. This year--1920--they intend to use two thousand bushels of potatoes for seed alone and the prospects are that they will have a bumper crop, which at the present prices of potatoes, will mean a small fortune in itself. Oscar O'Bannon is just completing a modern home in Alliance at the corner of Emerson Avenue and Fourth Street, at a cost of $22,000 where he and his hospitable wife will soon be at home to their friends.
Mrs. O'Bannon is a woman of great personal charm and talent. She is well known in this section for her work in social and charitable circles and is also an active worker in the Methodist church to which the family belongs. Mrs. O'Bannon was president of the Methodist Aid Society in 1920, which is one of the most interesting aid societies of Alliance, with a large membership. The O'Bannons have made a host of warm friends since coming to Box Butte county while the high standing attained in business by Mr. O'Bannon has given him a place of prominence in the financial circles of the Panhandle. They are citizens of whom Box Butte county may well be proud, ever ready to give of time and money for the improvement and upbuilding of the community and town, and are representative of the best element of Americans on whom the very existence of the nation is to depend during the trying years of social and financial adjustment which are looming large on the horizon. The O'Bannon brothers do not say much but they are writing large on the pages of the financial history of the northwestern part of Nebraska, and with other prominent citizens of Alliance have struck pay dirt in the old fields of Wyoming and it would be hard to estimate the value of their holdings which reach into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
GEORGE A. JONES, a representative citizen of Banner county, who has attained to some eminence in the county's practical affairs, was brought to this section in childhood, and has never desired to change his environment or seek a home in another part of the country. Mr. Jones feels that he is almost a native son. His birth, however, took place at Kent, Iowa, March 8, 1885.
The parents of Mr. Jones were John L. and Dora M. (Clayton) Jones, natives of Warren county, Illinois. The father was a farmer and stockraiser in Illinois and in Iowa. From the latter state he came to Banner county, Nebraska, in 1888, homesteading near Hull, and he resided on that place until 1907, when he retired to Kimball, Nebraska, where he is pleasantly situated. In politics he is a Republican. He belongs to the Methodist Episcopal church at Kimball, and also to the order of Modem Woodmen of America at the same place. George A. Jones' mother died in the spring of 1901. He is the second in his parents' family of six children, the others being: Arnold, who died June 15, 1911; Glenn, who lives at Dubois, Wyoming, married Louise Barfoot; Grace, who is the wife of W. R. Grant, of Ban-
ner county; Earl, who lives at Heath, Nebraska, married Josephine Larson, and Fern, who is the wife of J. J. Smith, of Ogden, Utah.
George A. Jones attended school at Hull, of which his father was one of the organizers, and later at Gering and Kimball, and before assuming personal business responsibilities, completed a course in a commercial college at North Platte. Mr. Jones served one term as deputy county clerk under County Clerk C. S. Page. For five years he was identified with the Banner County Bank at Harrisburg, serving that sound financial institution for three years as assistant cashier and two years as cashier. In 1906, he homesteaded where he now lives. His home surroundings indicate thrift and plenty and his well regulated farm operations are profitable in the extreme. Mr. Jones owns twelve hundred and eighty acres of land and runs about a hundred head of cattle, fifty head of Percheron horses and from thirty to fifty head of Poland China hogs annually. His extensive industries are carried on according to scientific methods, and the latest improved farm machinery will be found on his place.
On June 15, 1916, Mr. Jones was married to Miss Nettie Larson, whose people were pioneers in Banner county, and the (sic) have five children; Eldon, Lois, Morris, Helen and Merna. They attend the Methodist Episcopal church. In politics Mr. Jones has always been a Republican. He is a member of the Farmers Union and belongs fraternally to the Masons and the Knights of Pythias. He was patriotically active during the World war, furthered to the best of his ability the various local war movements that included the selling of Liberty bonds, was a member of the Legal Advisory board and county chairman of the Council of Defense.
In August; 1920, Mr. Jones bought a home at Gering and moved there on account of school advantages for his children.
THOMAS C. BARKELL, who has been a resident of Banner county for thirty-one years, courageously bore his part in times of early hardship, and as opportunity came later on, did his best in assisting to bring about present conditions that make this section of Nebraska one of the finest in the state. He was born in Grant county, Wisconsin, November 4, 1870.
The parents of Mr. Barkell were Richard and Mary (Ralph) Barkell, the former of whom was born in England and the latter in Wisconsin. Richard Barkell was but one year old when his parents came to the United States and settled in Wisconsin in 1842, and there he lived until 1887, when he came to Nebraska and homesteaded northwest of Harrisburg, in Scottsbluff county. He lived on that place for five years, removing then to Big Horn Springs, north of Kimball in Banner county and remained there until he retired. to Kimball in 1899. There both he and his wife died, his death occurring February 17, 1904, and her death April 5, 1912. Of their four children, Thomas C. was the third in order of birth, the others being: John H., who was accidentally killed in 1894 by a fall over a fifty-foot cliff when cutting timber; Richard J., who lives at Ingleside, and Philip R., who lives near Kirk, Nebraska. The father was a Republican in politics. Both parents were members of the United Brethren Church, but after removing to Kimball they joined the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Thomas C. Barkell attended school in Wisconsin and one term in Scottsbluff county, Nebraska. When twenty-one years old he started out for himself and made headway by working on ranches, mostly in Wyoming. The eight hundred and forty acres he now owns in Banner county is mainly ranch land. He breeds Durham cattle, and also raises hogs. In connection with ranch work he has always looked about for opportunity to be usefully employed in other directions, and, from 1912 to 1918, he operated a mail route between Harrisburg and Big Horn. Otherwise be has never accepted any public position but in the capacity of a private citizen has done his full duty.
On December 20, 1899, Mr. Barkell was united in marriage to Miss Cora C. Jackson, a daughter of Loren G. and Margaret (Sloan) Jackson, who reside in Wisconsin. Mr. and Mrs. Barkell have one son, Roy G., who was born September 14, 1906. They are members of the United Brethren Church and take active part in its work, Mr. Barkell assisting in the organization of Sunday Schools at Kirk, Heath and Big Horn. In politics he has always been affiliated with the Republican party. Mr. Barkell is looked upon as one of the dependable and representative men of the county.
ROBERT L. OSBORNE, Jr., who is well and favorably known in Banner county, Nebraska, was born here April 14, 1888, and is a son of Robert Osborne, an early settler here. He attended the district schools and took a course in the Grand Island Business college. He has lived in this county all his life, was born in a dugout, started out for himself without capital and strove hard to earn the money with which to pay for his homestead. Today
Mr. Osborne owns six hundred and forty acres of well improved land, raises thirty head of cattle yearly and is one of the most successful farmers of his section.
On June 7, 1916, Mr. Osborne was united in marriage to Mrs. Elsie M. Christ, widow of George N. Christ and a daughter of Christian and Elsie M. (Witmer) Siebert, who died in Europe. Her father was a farmer near Neufchatel, France. Mrs. Osborne is one in a family of twelve children and is the only one living in Nebraska. After coming to the United States in 1904, she lived three years in New York City, then came to Denver, Colorado. In that city she was married to George N. Christ, who died December 20, 1915, leaving two children: Caroline, who was born October 30, 1908, and George S., who was born July 7, 1907. Mr. Christ was a reclamation surveyor for the United States government. Mrs. Osborne has been a resident of Banner county since 1907. She homesteaded four hundred and eighty acres on sections 11 and 14 in township 19. Mr. and Mrs. Osborne have no children. They have everything very comfortable about them. In early days wild game was very plentiful in this section but is now so seldom encountered that when three antelope were found on the farm recently interest and curiosity were aroused all over the neighborhood. Mr. Osborne is not active in politics and takes more interest in developing his farm industries than in holding any public office. They maintain a hospitable home and both he and Mrs. Osborne have many friends.
EWING R. BARRETT, who is a well known resident of Banner county, where his life has been spent, bears a name that has been honorably connected with farm, ranch and official life here for many years. Mr. Barrett was born in Banner county, July 6, 1886.
His father was Isaac N., and both parents were born at Belle Valley, Ohio. Isaac Barrett came west and was a ranger for some time and worked on different ranches. In early days in Banner county he freighted from Sidney to Hull, a distance of eighty miles. He was one of the first homesteaders in the vicinity of Hull and lived on his land for six years, then sold and moved to Kimball, afterward working for several years on the Lewbickel ranch. Mr. Barrett was then appointed mail driver between Kimball and Harrisburg, in which position he served for eight years, when he was appointed on the mail route to Colorado. He was equally faithful and efficient, during the three years preceding his death, performing his duties so carefully and completely as to bring commendation from all. He died at the post of duty, probably from heart disease, in June, 1918. Of his five children, Ewing E. is the fourth in order of birth, the others being: Charles, who resides near Hull, Nebraska, married Lila Olsen; Weldon and Leslie, twins, both of whom live in Banner county, the former unmarried and the latter married to Minnie Crubbs, and Guy, who lives at Kirk, Nebraska.
Ewing R. Barrett attended the Banner county schools with his brothers, and all were reared on the farm. In 1915, he engaged in freighting for a time, hauling potatoes, onions and cabbages from Greeley, Colorado, to his own neighborhood, where these vegetables are not generally grown, and the venture proved profitable. He gave this up to engage in farming, and now, in association with his brother Charles, Mr. Barrett is operating four hundred and eighty acres of leased land near Hull. They raise some stock but devote the most of the land to general farming and are doing very well. Mr. Barrett has always taken an intelligent interest in public matters and has been a staunch Republican ever since he reached manhood. He has a wide acquaintance many friends, but has never married.
GEORGE W. INGLES, one of the progressive and enterprising young farmers of Banner county, was born in Scottsbluff county, Nebraska, December 24, 1891. He belongs to an old and prominent family of this section, being a son of William H. and Edith (Richards) Ingles, extended mention of whom will be found in this work.
George W. Ingles. obtained his education in the public schools of Banner county. He has always followed farm pursuits, farming and ranching, and is thoroughly experienced. For five years he worked on the Airdale ranch, where he had the practical training that he has since found very useful. For the past three years Mr. Ingles has been operating his father's farm of seven hundred acres in Banner county and has met with the success that close and careful attention to business usually brings about.
On, September 6, 1916, Mr. Ingles was united in marriage to Miss Nellie W. Jones, who is a daughter of Edward J. and Almeda (Bond) Jones. The parents of Mrs. Ingles homesteaded in Scottsbluff county in 1913, but later sold their property and moved to Brush, Colorado, where they yet reside. Mr. Ingles has never accepted any political office, but he is staunch Republican.
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