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FRANK F. STAUFFER AND FAMILY.
son says, he raised little the first years and the mere question of existance (sic) in the new country proved serious, but he was young, had been reared to hard work and was not afraid of doing whatever he could to earn money. From the first he had great faith in the possibilities and future of the Panhandle, and though he suffered from drought in the early nineties, from the grasshoppers and other insect pests, held on through all and his faith has been justified; for today he has a comfortable fortune and has seen this rolling prairie become a veritable garden spot of Nebraska. Mr. Johnson engaged in general farming, cultivated his land with care and skill, adding improvements from time to time as his capital allowed, erected new and substantial buildings, and eventually converted what had been useless and valueless property into one of the finest cultivated farming estates in this part of Cheyenne county. As the years passed he bought land adjoining his original tract until today he owns a full section and the improvements on all of it he has the pride of knowing he placed there himself. Mr. Johnson has continued to engage in diversified fanning and stock-raising, managing his affairs with success so that he now has this valuable farm estate and various other investments. Among the citizens of Cheyenne county he is known as an industrious man of high principles, excellent business ability, and utmost personal probity. He has their respect for what he has achieved and the manner in which he accomplished it. Public life has never been attractive enough, nor political rewards strong enough, to take his attention from the cultivation of the soil; and he has been contented to carry his career straight through as a representative of the agricultural interests of his community. Having an excellent practical education himself, Mr. Johnson has taken an active part in every progressive civic movement since locating in Nebraska; he advocated good roads, good schools and all improved agricultural methods; to demonstrate this he has been a member of his school board for many years, filling it efficiently and well.
In 1888, just a year after coming to this community, Mr. Johnson married Miss Elna Olson, also a native of Sweden, and this courageous woman has proved an able helpmate and devoted mother; for she stood beside her husband during all the early years, lending aid and encouragement and has played no minor part in building up the fortune which she and her husband today enjoy. There have been four children in the Johnson family: Ester M., lives on a ranch in Colorado; Sophie, resides on a farm near Sidney; Julia, now Mrs. Rassmuson, also lives on a ranch in Colorado, and Mabel, who is at home with her parents, The family are members of. the Lutheran church, while Mr. Johnson is guided by no party lines when he casts his vote, but gives his support to the man best fitted to serve the community, state or nation, as the case may be.
FRANK F. STAUFFER, the vice-president and former cashier of the Banner County Bank at Harrisburg, has long been one of Banner county's representative men. He has lived here since boyhood and owns many acres of valuable land, included in which is a tract on which was sown the first alfalfa seed in Banner county.
Frank F. Stauffer was born in Wayne county, Ohio, May 14, 1875. His parents were Dansel H. and Mary (Frase) Stauffer, the former was born in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, and died in Nebraska, April 11, 1899. The latter was born in Ohio and died in Wayne county in January, 1881. Of their eight children, five are living and are thus distributed as to homes: Frank F., lives in Banner county; Nancy, in Akron, Ohio; John at Massilon, Ohio; Cora at Warwick, Ohio; and Salamon, in Michigan. Before coming to Nebraska, in November, 1885, the father for many years had been a farmer, fruit grower and dairyman in Ohio, where he owned one hundred and sixty acres of land. After reaching this state Dansel H. Stauffer pre-empted a quarter section in Banner county on which his son now lives, later filed as homesteader on the same land and also took a tree claim, Frank F. now owning that land also. Mr. Stauffer was greatly interested in fruit growing and set out the first orchard in the county, and was also the first successful experimenter in alfalfa. Before leaving Ohio he was married a second time, Miss Lucy Rudy becoming his wife in 1885. No children were born to this union but she survived him until 1915. Mr. Stauffer was a member of the Christian church, and in his political views he was a Republican. In every way he was a man of sterling character.
Frank F. Stauffer was eleven years old when he accompanied his father to Banner county but in his own opinion his education had not been completed. He was quite ambitious and as there were no schools organized here for about three years, he had to study alone and applied himself so diligently to his books that he qualified himself for teaching,
and later on taught one term of school in Banner county for twenty-five dollars a month, two terms in Hamilton county and one more term in Banner county, at thirty dollars a month. His school district was the first to organize in the county. Clara Shumway was the first county superintendent, and Minnie Shumway taught the first school in an upstairs room of Mr. Stauffer's home.
Beginning early to work on the farm at wages of fifty-cents a day, Mr. Stauffer carefully saved his money and when ready to start into the cattle business had five hundred dollars to invest. He remained at home that winter and taught his last term of school in Banner county, but in the spring located at Kearney, from which place he was shortly afterward summoned home by a telegram announcing his father's serious illness. His father died a week later and Mr. Stauffer had to take charge and assume many responsibilities not of his own undertaking. He found himself obligated to stay, when the estate was finally settled, and this has since been his home, although at that time he much preferred Hamilton county as a place of residence. It was about that time that serious troubles arose between ranch owners and those who turned their hundred of cattle out on the range without paying any attention to whom the ranges belonged. This trouble was not to Mr. Stauffer's liking but he did the best he could where the estate's interest was concerned and received credit for acting justly and fairly.
Mr. Stuffer (sic) now has in farms and ranches more than twenty-two hundred acres. He breeds Shire horses and Hereford cattle, raising fifty head of cattle yearly and a hundred head of horses. From a field of thirty-five acres of non-irrigated land, his father's original alfalfa farm, Mr. Stauffer cuts an average of a hundred tons of alfalfa a year. This land had been reseeded only once in twenty-five years. The orchard set out by his father consists of five acres of apples and cherries, the latter being a pretty sure crop, apples not doing so well when there have been late frosts. Mr. Stauffer has harvested a hundred bushels of luscious cherries in one season. He and his family enjoy the comforts of a modern residence of ten rooms and bath, hot water system of heating and acetylene gas for lighting, cooking and ironing. The barns Mr. Stauffer constructed himself, of substantial logs and he has installed a water pressure system covering all the out-buildings and garden lots. This is one of the model rural homes of the county.
On June 18, 1906, Mr. Stauffer was united in marriage with Miss Martha Osborne, who is a daughter of Robert and Maggie (Draper) Osborne, who came to Banner county in 1887, and now live at Gering. Mr. Osborne is assistant assessor. Mr. and Mrs. Stauffer have five children: Henry, Iva, Walter, Robert and Cora, for whose rearing and education Mr. Stauffer has made careful provision.
In 1913, Mr. Stauffer became identified with the Banner County Bank at Harrisburg, of which he is the vice-president and he served the institution as cashier for four years, 1913-1916. He is also interested in the Gering National Bank. He is a Republican. Although he has been active in many public ways in the county, he has never accepted any political office except that of county commissioner, in which capacity he served four years.
JOHN CLURE, who is one of Morrill county's most highly respected citizens and substantial farmers, came to Nebraska in those early days when many hardships and even dangers menaced the lives of the pioneers. He has resided in several sections of the state and came to Morrill county in 1905, when he secured his valuable homestead of a hundred and sixty acres.
John Clure was born at Aurora, Illinois, July 12, 1849. His grandfather was born in Switzerland and took part in the war of 1812 after settling in Canada, in which country the grandmother was born. The parents of Mr. Clure were Joseph and Mary (Burlin) Clure, and the father was born in Canada, February 10, 1819, and the mother was reared in the dominion. Of their twelve children, three daughters and four sons are living.
John Clure went from Illinois to Iowa and lived there for twenty-seven years before coming to Nebraska. He was one of the earliest homesteaders on Pine ridge, six miles west of Belmont, in Dawes county, and lived there for ten years. To the usual hardships of pioneers, the fear of Indian attacks was added and Mr. Clure helped in the building of stockades for protection, but the prompt and efficient protection given the settlers by the soldiers from Fort Robinson made the stockades unnecessary. In order to provide for his family before the land yielded crops, Mr. Clure worked at any kind of employment he could secure for money was very scarce. He has cut and hauled many a load of wood and sold the same for seventy-five cents. He has put excellent improvements on his homestead in Morrill county and has practically turned over the general management to his son, Samuel R., who was
honorably discharged at Fort Dodge, Iowa, having served as motor ambulance driver in France from November 13, to January 25, 1919.
On March 31, 1872, in Cass county, Iowa, Mr. Clure was married to Miss Sarah Parker, whose parents, Humphrey and Nancy (Cole) Parker, were natives of Pike county, Indiana. The father of Mrs. Clure lived to the age of eighty and the mother to the age of eighty-one years. Mr. and Mrs. Clure have had children as follows: Lula May, who died in infancy; Arthur, who lives at Minature (sic), Nebraska; Mrs. Lucy L. Wood, whose home is in Nevada, where she has a chicken ranch; Mrs. Annabel Hart, who lives near McGrew, Nebraska; Mrs. Myra A. Shawver, who lives at Alliance, Nebraska; Myrton O. and Joseph H., both of whom live in Cass county, Iowa; John E., who resides at Melbeta, Nebraska; Samuel R., who lives at home; Asher E., who lives at Gering, Nebraska, and Serena A., who lives at McGrew. Mr. Clure and his family attend the Chrustian (sic) church. He has been a busy man all his life and never felt inclined toward political office, and at present is an independent voter, nor has he ever united with any fraternal organization. He has been a good friend and neighbor, however, and in every section in which he has lived may be found those who have been helped in a friendly way. He has survived many of his old neighbors of pioneer days who were closely drawn together by common misfortune and danger, but some of them remain and when they meet, their stories of early days are both interesting and instructive to the younger generation.
FRANK ROBERTSON, who has been a well contended resident of Nebraska since the age of sixteen years, came to the state with his parents in 1896. He has been continuously interested in the material development of the country, being a competent carpenter as well as substantial farmer.
Frank Robertson was born in the state of New York, not far distant from the great metropolis, September 14, 1870. He comes of sturdy stock, both of his parents surviving and his father, though seventy-eight years old, continues work as a carpenter, with almost as sure a meauring (sic) eye as fifty years ago. Frank Robertson is one of the sons of Levi and Eunice (Kenney) Robertson, both of whom were born in New York and now live in Franklin county, Nebraska. There Frank Robertson grew to manhood, learned his father's trade and also engaged in farming. In 1906, he came to Morrill county and homesteaded and now has a valuable farm of two hundred and forty acres, eighty acres of which is cattle pasture. He has made many improvements and his buildings are all commodious and substantial. Mr. Robertson is a man of excellent business judgment and has been very successful in his undertakings.
Mr. Robertson was married to Miss Netta Bond, who was born June 10, 1870, in Boone county, Iowa, and is a daughter of Thomas and Mary (Ford) Bond, the former of whom was born in 1848, in central Indiana, and the latter in 1852, in the state of New York. They came to Nebraska and homesteaded in Franklin county in 1873, removing to Lincoln county in 1908, and now live at Bridgeport. Mr. and Mrs. Robertson have five children: Ralph, who is married, lives in Wyoming; and Florence, Olive, Seth and Eleanora, all at home. They also have an adopted daughter, Esther, who is now the wife of Wallace Smith, a farmer in Morrill county. Mr. and Mrs. Robertson are members of the Free Methodist church. Mr. Robertson has always been an outspoken advocate of temperance and thus identified himself with the Prohibition party, and in every other way has lent his influence to the cause of law and order wherever he has lived.
WILLIAM GETTY, who is one of the enterprising and successful farmers and land-owners of Morrill county, was born December 19, 1883, in Morton county, Kansas. He is the oldest of seven children born to Charles and Armitta (Way) Getty, the former of whom was born in Indiana, and the latter in Morton county, Kansas.
The parents of Mr. Getty came to Nebraska and settled in Box Butte county in 1896, but about one year later went to Weston county, Wyoming, and there the father owns a ranch and carries on an extensive stock business. William Getty remained with his father in Wyoming until manhood, then acquired ranching land for himself and still owns two hundred and twenty acres in Weston county, Wyoming. In 1917, he came to Morrill county and bought eighty acres of land which he has highly improved. It is all irrigated and is exceedingly valuable.
In 1911, Mr. Getty was united in marriage to Miss Flossie Spencer, who was born in Nebraska. Extended mention of the Spencer family will be found in this work. Mr. and Mrs. Getty have two children, namely: Alice and Elsie. The family belongs to the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Getty is an independent voter.
ARTHUR M. GILBERT. -- In no section of Nebraska has agricultural development been more rapid than in Morrill county, aided, in recent years, by the vast irrigation projects of the Federal Government. Ownership of irrigated land means certain prosperity and it has been the laudable effort of homesteaders who came and established themselves here as permanent residents, to secure the advantages of irrigation as rapidly as possible. Among the enterprising young men who came to Morrill county and homesteaded a hundred acres in 1908, is Arthur M. Gilbert, who has ninety acres of his land ditcher (sic). It is situated on section 34 town 22, and is considered one of the best farms in the county.
Arthur M. Gilbert was born at Clarks, Nebraska, February 5, 1886, and is third in a family of eight chidlren (sic) born to B. M. and Eliza E. Gilbert. His father was born in Kentucky and his mother in Wisconsin, and their marriage took place at Prairie City, Iowa. The father has been a farmer all his life, first in Iowa and later in Merrick county, Nebraska, and still later in Oregon, where he still lives.
In the public schools of Merrick county, Arthur M. Gilbert obtained his education and his agricultural training was secured in a very practical way on his father's farm. He came to Morrill county in 1907, and in the following year secured his homestead. He has devoted much care to the substantial improving of his land and all his surroundings indicates thrift and plenty. He carries on general farming and raises about thirty head of cattle per year, and additionally has been a moderate sheep feeder.
In Morrill county, September 29, 1909, Mr. Gilbert was united in marriage to Miss Lela E. Brown, who was born in Iowa. She is a daughter of J. M. and Hannah C. Brown, natives of Iowa, who homesteaded in Morrill county in 1908. Mr. Brown met an accidental death on his farm. Mrs. Brown resides at Boulder, Colorado. Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert have three children: Le Arta, Archie and Kenneth. Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert are members of the Seventh Day Adventist church, in which they are highly esteemed, as they are in the entire neighborhood. Mr. Gilbert is a well read, intelligent man and votes according to his own judgment.
MICHAEL M. KLINE, of section 30, township 14-48, Cheyenne county, has been one of the industrious men of this locality for more than three decades, linking his name with all that is admirable in farming, and wise and progressive in individual life and bearing the distinction of being thoroughly and completely self-made. He is a native of the Old Dominion of fine German stock, and has many of the admirable traits of that fine race. Mr. Kline was born in Virginia, December 17, 1855, the son of George and Elizabeth (Miller) Kline, both natives of that state. The father was a general farmer who followed that vocation all his life, passing away at the age of sixty-seven years, while his wife survived him until her seventy-fourth year. There were the following children in the Kline family: Michael, the subject of this review; Elizabeth, who married Paul Kappler and lives in Iowa; Ira, a resident of Omaha, and Eva, who is married and now resides in Colorado.
Michael grew up on his father's farm in Virginia, attending school during the term and helped on the farm during his vacations and after school hours, as there are many things that a sturdy boy can do that do not tax his strength and at the same time keep him out of doors. When he was young boys did not have the lives of youths on a farm today; there was no using the family automobile after supper to go to town or visit friends, though a general eight hour schedule was in vogue, eight hours in the morning and another in the afternoon, so that he grew up with an excellent practical knowledge of the farming business as carried on along the Atlantic seaboard. After finishing school Michael remained with his father for a period before launching himself as an independent business man in agricultural pursuits, but there was little chance for a young man in such an old and well, settled state as Virginia and he decided to try his fortune in the west. In the fall of 1878 he came west to Keokuk county, Iowa, where he lived nine years. In 1887, he came to Nebraska, settled in Cheyenne county becoming one of the pioneers if the section. He took up a homestead on which he still resides, which is ample testimony that he considered the location an excellent one and had faith in the future of the Panhandle. His start, necessarily was a modest one, but as time passed and he was able to realize money from his labors and crops, he added to his equipment, made improvements and enlarged the scope of his operations. From the first, Mr. Kline engaged in general farming and stock raising, and as he was careful, thrifty, willing to try and adopt new methods and new farm machinery that lightened the work on the farm, was soon meeting with gratifying success. He erected a comfortable home, many and substantial farm buildings and made such other improvements as highly enhanced the value of the land,
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