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his fidelity and business sagacity did much to keep the bank on a safe and paying basis.
After a continuous service of twenty-nine years Mr. Scovel retired from the First National Bank in April, 1918, and in the January following was appointed State Bank Examiner, which office he held but a short time when he was elected president of the Chadron State Bank and after six months service, resigned his position on account of change in the management which made it uncongenial for him. In January, 1920, he in connection with other business men and ranchmen organized the Farmers & Merchants State Bank of Chadron, with a capital of $100,000.00 and suplus (sic) $10,000.00; in August, 1920, this bank bought the Chadron State Bank and consolidated the two under the name of the Chadron State Bank with capital and surplus as above. Mr. Scovel is president, J. H. White, vice-president and W. P. Rooney, cashier.
At Chadron on January 8, 1891, Mr. Scovel was united in marriage to Anna G. Campbell, who was born in Pennsylvania, where her parents died. Mr. and Mrs. Scovel have two children, Elmira G., an accomplished musician, who teaches the science in the Chadron State Normal School; George Kenneth, who completed a law course in Leland Stanford University in June, 1920, and was admitted to practice in the California courts and is associated with a leadng (sic) law firm at this time in Sant (sic) Ana, Calfornia (sic). During the World War he served with credit as a soldier was a member of the American Expeditionary Force sent to France and spent sixteen months in that country, immediately resuming his interrupted studies upon his return to his native land. Mr. Scovel is a Republican in his political opinions. He is also a York Rite and a Scottish Rite Mason and a Shriner, and has held all the offices in the Blue Lodge, Chapter and Commandery in his home city. He is a member of the Elks Lodge at Norfolk, Nebraska. His wife, daughter and himself are members of the Eastern Star and the ladies are members of the Woman's Club. The family belongs to the Episcopal church, and there are few benevolent movements or enterprises for the public welfare that do not claim their interest and engage their assistance.
HARRY B. COFFEE, eldest son of Samuel B. and Elizabeth (Tisdale) Coffee was born in Sioux county, Nebraska, March 16, 1890. He attended the public school at Chadron and graduated in 1909, valedictorian of his class.
He then entered the University of Nebraska and graduated in 1913. While at the university Mr. Coffee was honored by being elected president of his class, and also business manager of the Cornhusker, the annual college publication. He was a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity.
After leaving the University of Nebraska he engaged in the real estate business at Chadron where he has been actively engaged ever since with the exception of one year spent in touring Canada and South America, and one year in the army, in which he holds a reserve commission in the air service as captain.
During 1919, following his discharge from the army, Mr. Coffee again took charge of his real estate office and sold almost a million dollars worth of real estate, specializing in large ranch sales. His sales for two years, 1917 and 1919, included over forty-three thousand acres of northwestern Nebraska land--a record few in Nebraska have equalled (sic).
In addition to his real estate activities, Mr. Coffee is president of the Coffee Cattle Company, a $100,000.00 corporation with holdings on the Niobrara River in Sioux county, Nebraska. The company owns and leases approximately twenty thousand acres.
Mr. Coffee is now president of the Chadron Chamber of Commerce, and a booster for city and county development. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church. He is an Elk, a Rotarian, and Shriner Mason.
SAMUEL BUFFINGTON COFFEE, for many years was an extensive ranchman well and favorably known in Nebraska. He was born at Greenfield, Missouri, March 2, 1855, a son of Col. John T. and Harriet (Wade) Coffee, and a brother of Charles F. Coffee, a prominent banker and stock raiser of Chadron, Nebraska.
In 1877, "Buff" Coffee, as he was familiarly known, in company with his brother, Charles F. Coffee came from Texas and settled in Wyoming where together they engaged in the cattle business. In 1879, "Buff" Coffee moved to Sioux county and was one of the first homesteaders in that frontier region. He continued to acquire as much land as he could buy adjoining, but, in 1898, he branched out, and bought a ranch on the Niobrara river south of Harrison. Practically every acre of this land acquired since 1879, is still held by the family.
On March 1, 1889, Mr. Coffee was married to Elizabeth Tisdale of Georgetown, Texas, and of their five children the following survive: Harry B., an active young business man of Chadron; Rex T., who owns and operates
the original ranch of his father; Guy H., who is vice-president and general manager of the Coffee Cattle Company which owns and operates the ranch purchased by his father in 1898, together with extensive holdings since acquired by the company; and Edna, who is the wife of John B. Cook, a prominent business man of Scottsbluff, Nebraska.
Mr. Coffee died at Harrison, Nebraska, Ostober (sic) 1, 1900. He was a man of sterling personal character, and great business capacity. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church and the Masonic fraternity.
WILLIAM A. DANLEY. -- To watch a seed develop into a plant is an interesting experience that has come within the attention of almost everyone, but to watch modern cities develop from the bare prairie into power and opulence, comfort, beauty and culture, all within the short space of but little more than thirty years, has not been the privilege of everyone. This proof of virility and enterprise in western Nebraska, has come under the personal observation of William A. Danley, who is one of Chadron's best known and highly esteemed residents. In all this marvelous development Mr. Danley has borne such part as opportunity afforded.
William A. Danley was born September 2, 1860, at Danvers, McLean county, Illinois. His parents were Samuel T. and Mary E. (Blair) Danley, natives of Illinois, the father born December 2, 1833, and the mother December 14, 1838. Mr. Danley and his father were both born in the house on the old Danley homestead, which the Danleys occupied until 1875. The father carried on farming in McLean county until 1879, when he moved to Niobrara, Knox county, Nebraska. In 1889, he moved to Dawes county, homesteading near the old site of Chadron, removing from there in 1899, to Colorado, where his death occurred in 1900. The mother returned then to Chadron, where she died in 1904. There were but two children: William A. and Margaret. The latter married John Setter and her death occurred in 1898. She was the first young woman to be married in Dawes county., The father was a man of political importance and active in the Republican party, and he was the first county commissioner elected in Cherry county, Nebraska. Both parents were members of the Congregational church.
William A. Danley obtained his schooling in his native state and was nineteen years old when he accompanied his parents to Nebraska.
In 1880, both father and son worked at railroad grading on what was then called the Fremont, Elkhorn & Missouri Valley line, later the Chicago and Northwestern, from O'Neill to Buffalo Gap, and they also hauled wood from the hills and sold it for five dollars a load. As a summer occupation they started the first and only general merchandise store at Bordeaux, returning then to railroad labor. During 1887 and 1888, Mr. Danley and his father operated a dairy, and during the time they were so engaged, William A. drove the milk wagon to even the most distant points and in the severest winter weather missed only three deliveries in all that time. Knox county was not very closely settled at that time but great friendliness existed between the pioneers and they were willing to travel long distances to any social gathering. There was a lack of public entertainment, hence, when a few public spirited men arranged to have a Fourth of July celebration in 1884, it is quite possible that every family in the county was represented. The immortal Declaration of Independence was reverently listened to as it was read aloud by Mrs. O'Linn, there being no doubt at that time, of the pride these lonely settlers took in their American citizenship.
After leaving Princeton (Illinois) College, Mr. Danley accepted the first position offered him, that of bookkeeper for the Milwaukee Beer Company, at Running Water, Nebraska, although he was no advertiser for the concern as he has never tasted liquor in his life. In addition to the activities already mentioned, Mr. Danley then engaged in farming for a time, and after coming to Chadron was in the hardware business for several years, and for six years was in the bakery business. From 1907, to 1916, he was postmaster at Chadron, and in 1917, be embarked in the book and music business in this city.
At Chadron, on December 19, 1888, Mr. Danley was married to Miss Jennie Hollenbeck, a daughter of John Hollenbeck, a former well known resident of Dawes county. Mr. and Mrs. Danley have one son, Neal, who resides with his parents. They are members of the Congergational (sic). church, Mr. Danley being the oldest member in point of time, of this congregation, and for ten years he served as superintendent of the Sunday School. He has long been identified with the Masonic fraternity and is serving as secretary of the lodge at Chadron.
A Republican through training and conviction, Mr. Danley has always vigorously upheld the principles of his party. On numer-
ous occasions he has been chosen to serve in public office, the city council benefiting by his sound judgment for two terms, and, in 1911, he was appointed official register of births and deaths, an office he has faithfully filled ever since. Mr. Danley in turning his thoughts backward, can remember when Chadron was but a small town and when only the long red prairie grass waved over the present sites of Atkinson, Stuart, Long Pine and Ainsworth.
FRED W. PATTERSON, one of the enterprising young business men of Chadron, is junior member of the firm of Houghton & Patterson, real estate and general insurance. He has spent the greater part of his life in Nebraska, his native state, and yields to no one in loyal devotion to her best interests.
Fred W. Patterson was born August 24, 1885, at Syracuse, Otoe county, Nebraska, the eldest of three children born to Eugene A. and Elizabeth (Neu) Patterson, the former of whom was a native of Ohio and the latter of Indiana. They now reside in the Kenwood addition to Chadron, the father still retaining his ranch that is situated between Chadron and Crawford, in Dawes county. For five years, from 1879 to 1884, the father of Mr. Patterson served as a soldier in the United States army and during those dangerous times in the Indian country, assisted in making three surveys for government road from Pine Ridge to Buffalo Gap.
Mr. Patterson was two years old when his parents came to Dawes county and for seven years lived on the homestead. In the spring of 1895, he went to Dunbar in order to enjoy better educational advantages, and there completed the public school course. In 1906, he entered the university at Lincoln, where he pursued his studies for the next two years, from there going to Texas, in which state he remained three years and upon his return to Nebraska, engaged to work for the Burlington Railroad, in May, 1909, and continued until April, 1919, when he came to Chadron and here entered into his present business partnership, Mr. Houghton being one of the earliest real estate and insurance men of this city.
At Unadilla, Nebraska, on September 24, 1910, Mr. Patterson was united in marriage to Miss Bessie M. Mortimore, a daughter of George and Clara (Copes) Mortimore, who reside at Chadron. Mr. and Mrs. Patterson have a daughter, Lillis. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and take part in the city's pleasant social life, Mr. Patterson being secretary of the New Community Club of Chadron. He was reared in the Democratic party but personally prefers to be independent in his political life, at all times being an interested, honest citizen and upright business man.
MRS. MARY E. HAYWARD. -- Praiseworthy have been the efforts of innumerable young men in western Nebraska whereby they have built up their fortunes, and admiration and approval cannot be withheld by the honest historian. Unusual, however, is the equally successful example offered in Dawes county, by a member of the other sex, and even through a brief recital of the dominant facts in the life of Mrs. Mary E. Hayward, a prominent business woman of Chadron and a suffrage leader in the state, is revealed surpassing business ability, mental vigor and personal courage. Mrs. Hayward has been a resident of Dawes county for thirty-five years and is one of the most interesting personalities of Chadron.
Mary E. (Smith) Hayward was born at Liberty, in Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, the eldest of four children born to Andrew L. and Phoebe E. (Law) Smith. Mrs. Hayward has two sisters: Mrs. Nellie Woodard, who resides at Chadron; and Mrs. Sarah Ross Jacobus, who lives in Pennylvania (sic) The father followed agricultural pursuits in Pennsylvania during his entire life. The parents were members of the Presbyteran (sic) church and the children were reared in this religious body, good influences surrounding them from infancy.
Educational advantages were afforded Mary E. Smith and she completed the high school course at Great Bend, Pennsylvania. While books were not as plentiful or as easily distributed in those days as at present, there were well patronized public libraries and long before Mrs. Hayward came to Nebraska, she had read stories of the west and was particularly interested in a volume called "Western Life." Circumstances so adjusted themselves that there came a time when she found herself on a railroad train bound for that great western country of which she had read and thought so much, but of which she later discovered, she knew very little. Her objective point when she left home, was the Pacific coast, her intention being to locate either in Tacoma or Spokane, Washington. Of attractive personality and pleasant manner it was not difficult for her to find agreeable traveling acquaintances and after submitting them to the test of her judgment, she found railroad travel very inter
esting as far west as the line then went. It ended, however, at Valentine in Cherry county, Nebraska.
In pleasant reminiscence and with much humor, Mrs. Hayward relates numerous incidents and adventures with which she gained first-hand information as she traveled many miles by stage coach through what was then a practically unsettled part of Nebraska. She learned how people long separated from the conventional customs of living, still managed to be happy and cheerful along the line of a ruder civilization, and what she criticized and felt resentful about at first, she later understood. It was a new and startling experience to sleep in a room next to a log saloon, with the sheriff of the county and his friends playing cards all night almost within her sight, or later to share her landlady's bed with the children of the family and the five pet dogs sleeping beneath, and it was a distinct shock when she reached Gordon, in Sheridan county, to learn that it was the home of the original "Doc" Middleton, notorious horse thief and outlaw, of whom she had read in "Western Life," far away in her peaceful eastern home.
By this time Miss Smith had decided to locate permanently in Nebraska but Sheridan county did not altogether satisfy her; Rushville at that time consisting of but one log house and a tent hotel, and Hay Springs of but one house. She came then to Dawes county and reached what is now Chadron, in April, 1885, immediately consulting Benjamin Loewenthall, who had established a clothing store in a tent three miles from the present town site. The city of Chadron, it may be remarked received its name from a French trapper and squawman named Chadron, who came to this country in 1847. After necessary preliminaries, Miss Smith pre-emped (sic) land twenty-five miles west of Chadron, and by September of that year had established herself in a business way, on her present location at Chadron. During the first summer she raised all the vegetables she needed on her homestead. Earlier, she went to Box Butte county and filed on a timber claim, and it was on her return trip from that mission that she stopped over night at a country boarding house that was also a grocery and incidently the post office for that section. She discovered that occasionally the argus eyes of the government may see but blindly, for the postmistress could neither read nor write, and each expectant recipient of a letter was at liberty to select what he chose. If the key to the mail bag happened to be mislaid, the bag was easily opened with a sharp knife. It seemed to be the custom at that time and Miss Smith recalls no dissatisfaction.
On January 26, 1888, Mary E. Smith was united in marriage to William F. Hayward, who had come to this county in 1886, and homesteaded five miles west of Chadron. Mr. Hayward was a prominent man in the populist party, served one term as mayor of Chadron and one term as treasurer of Dawes county and was one of the organizers of the lodge of Odd Fellows. He died some years ago.
When Mrs. Hayward went into the general mercantile business, she established the firm name of M. E. Smith & Co., which has been maintained ever since. She began in a small way, carefully watching the tastes of her customers before laying in a heavy stock, and in order to be accommodating, kept her store open in the evenings and on Sundays, although it entailed a wearying round of toil. She succeeded. Today Mrs. Hayward carries the largest stock of general merchandise in Chadron, and gives employment and pays high wages to some twenty people. She stands foremost among the business men of the county and her satisfied patrons come long distances to deal with her.
Immersed in business as she has been for so many years, Mrs. Hayward has not been a recluse; on the other hand, has taken an active and interested part in all that concerns the advancement of her sex, both politically and socially. She is a leading member of the Woman's Suffrage Club at Chadron, which she helped to organize, and is president of the Suffrage organization in Nebraska, Working hard for legislative recognition. She is consistently charitable and has given substantial encouragement to many moral movements here. During the life of the Business Men's and the Commercial clubs, she was a working member and in that Way did much to assist in the development of the city. She belongs to the order of Lady Maccabees.
BENJAMIN F. PITMAN, who has been one of the enterprising and representative men of Dawes county for many years, and identified with the prosperous little city of Chadron almost from its beginning, came to this section of the state in 1887, and has greatly assisted in the wonderful development that has taken place here within thirty-three years. Observant and thoughtful from youth, ambitious but always soundly practical, Mr. Pitman discovered business opportunity where many others saw only a prospect of wasted effort. Time has justified his optimism that was supplemented by applied energy.
Benjamin Franklin Pitman was born January 16, 1861, at Newcastle, Indiana, and his education was secured in the public schools of his native city, After completing his high school studies, he entered the Citizens State Bank in a clerical capacity, and while there, during a whirlwind political campaign, was elected city clerk, this election being considered at the time in the light of a joke played on him by his friends. Mr. Pitman accepted the office and proved so efficient that he was elected without opposition for a second term, but he had no political aspirations and soon resigned in order to enter upon the duties of assistant cashier in the Rushville National Bank, at Rushville, Indiana, with a salary of $1,500 a year. To many less farsighted men this would have been quite satisfactory, but Mr. Pitman in looking ahead, realized that a more active business career would be more congenial. Hence he resigned his position and gave up his comfortable salary in the bank and entered into partnership with a friend and together they established a real estate, loan and insurance business at Huron, South Dakota.
This partnership was more or less satisfactorily operated for several years and then dissolved, the partner accepting a business proposition farther west and Mr. Pitman acquiring the agency of the Showalter Mortgage Company. In the meantime Mr. Pitman had organized the West Coast Fire and Marine Insurance Company of Washington. After handling the agency business very successfully at Huron for some years, the Showalter company sent him to Chadron, Nebraska, in 1887, as their northwest representative. It may be stated that in that capacity he loaned homesteaders over $500,000 for the company.
Mr. Pitman had by no means forgotten his training and early association with the banking business, and became financially interested in the bank at Harrison, Sioux county, became its president with C. E. Holmes as cashier, later selling the bank. For some years he has been a director and a member of the finance committee of the First National Bank of Chadron and the First National Bank of Hay Springs, in Sheridan county. His realty at Chadron is very valuable, consisting largely in modern buildings which reflect credit on owner and architect. In partnership with Charles F. Coffee, he erected the handsome Coffee-Pitman block, the largest business structure in the city, and he built also the Rex Theater building, the old Post Office building and the Masonic Temple.
There was a time when Mr. Pitman was personally acquainted with the majority of the settlers in Dawes county, knew every road in the county and could follow every trail. In 1897, he invested in land extensively in the county, acquiring twenty-five thousand acres, buying some of it for a dollar an acre. Later on he sold quarter sections of this land for two hundred and fifty dollars, this same land now commanding from seventy-five dollars to a hundred dollars an acre. Mr. Pitman owns the brick-yard at Chadron but has it under rental.
After locating at Huron, South Dakota, Mr. Pitman returned to Rushville, Indiana, where he was united in marriage with Miss Emma M. Morgan, and they came immediately to Huron, a sister of Mrs. Pitman accompanying them. At that time it was indeed a desolate place for cultured young women to try to make a home. Building operations had not yet been directed to the erection of comfortable residences, and Mr.Pitman had to establish his wife and sister in the Railroad Hotel. During their necessary period of residence in this pioneer hostelry, the ladies learned more facts concerning the state of western civilization and the character and personality of the Indians of whom they had read extensively, than they ever dreamed of, but they were sincere and resourceful young women and the time came when they could bravely smile over what at first, seemed unbearable conditions. Two children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Pitman, one of whom died in infancy. The survivor, who bears his father's name, is now completing his university studies in Washington, having served with the American Expeditionary Force for two years in France during the World War. Mrs. Pitman is a member of the Episcopal church.
Mr. Pitman has never been anxious to serve in any political capacity, but he has always been an ardent Republican and proud of his Americanism. For seven years he was a member of the city council of Chadron, when he resigned in order to accept the position of city clerk. He has been quite active in fraternal life, is Past Master of Samaritan Lodge No. 158, A. F. & A. M., Chadron, Nebraska, and its oldest resident Past Master; Past High Priest of Occidental R. A. Chapter No. 48, Chadron, Nebraska; and Past Grand High Priest of the state of Nebraska; Past Illustrious Master of Zerrebubel Council Royal and Select Masters, No. 27 of Chadron, Nebraska; and Grand Captain of the Guard of the Grand Council of Nebraska; Past Eminent Commander of Melita Commandery No. 22,
Knights Templar of Chadron, Nebraska; Past Commander of Chadron Lodge Knights of Pythias; Tangier Temple O. A. O. M. Shrine, Omaha, Nebraska; K. C. C. H. Scottish Rite Mason, Omaha, Nebraska; Consistory No, 1, Omaha, Nebraska; is a trustee of the Nebraska Masonic Home; a charter member of Norfolk Lodge No. 653, later transferring to Chadron Lodge No. 1399 and a member of the Elks of which he is a trustee.
HON. ALBERT W. CRITES, who for many years was accounted Chadron's leading citizen, achieved distinction at the bar, on the bench, in politics and in Freemasonry. His wide learning, his professional ability, his social gifts, true manliness and distinctive personality, received generous recognition from those who knew him longest and best, while on numerous occasions he was chosen by the highest governmental authorities for positions of trust and great responsibility. It was in answer to such a call that he came first to Chadron. His entire life was one of honorable and satisfactory accomplishment, and in his death, his community and the county and state lost a man of unusual worth.
Albert W. Crites was born at Waterford, Racine county, Wisconsin, May 12, 1848, and died at Chadron, Nebraska, August 23, 1915. His parents were Joseph and Lydia (Darling) Crites. The paternal genealogical line leads back to a Pennsylvania Dutch ancestor who served as a soldier under General Braddock at Fort Duquesne, in 1775, and the maternal, to a Connecticut colonist who was a member of the colonial contingent sent in 1745, to assist the British in the capture of Louisburg, Cape Breton. Albert Crites boyhood was passed on his father's farm and his early education was secured in the district schools of Racine county. Later he became a student in Lawrence University, Appleton, Wisconsin, and afterward taught school four years. Mr. Crites then entered upon the study of law in the office of Judge Hand, of Racine, was admitted to the bar on March 22, 1872, and subsequently was admitted to practice in the Circuit, District and Supreme courts of the United States.
In 1886 Mr. Crites was appointed by President Grover Cleveland, chief of the department of captured property, claims and lands, and, in 1887, by the same authority he was appointed the first receiver of public moneys in the United States Land office at Chadron, coining here in June of that year. With the utmost efficiency he administered this office for two years and three months, retiring when a change of administration brought Mr. Harrison to the presidency. From casting his first vote until the end of his life he was a loyal and ardent Democrat, serving at times as a member of the Democratic State Central Committee, and very often attending state conventions as a delegate from Dawes county. In 1891, he was appointed by Governor Boyd to fill a vacancy as judge of the Fifteenth judicial District of Nebraska, and his career on the bench reflected credit both on himself and the judicial district, He served also as county attorney of Dawes county and was a member of the Nebraska Land Transfer Commission. In community affairs he assumed a natural leadership, built up the public schools as a member of the Chadron board of education, and as mayor inaugurated many substantial movements and gave encouragement to numberless worthy enterprises.
On June 15, 1876, Judge Crites was united in marriage to Mary Caroline Hayt, who was born at Battle Creek, Michigan, in 1846, and still survives. Two sons were born to this marriage, Edwin D. and Frederick A., both of whom are prominent in the business and professional affairs of Chadron and Dawes county. Judge Crites was a Mason of high rank and at the time of death was Knight Commander of the Court of Honor, the entering degree of the Thirty-third degree in Freemasonry, a distinction attained by comparatively few members of the fraternity.
Edwin D. Crites, son of Albert Wallace and Mary Caroline (Hayt) Crites, was born January 29, 1884, was educated in the Nebraska State University, studied law and was admitted to the Nebraska bar in 1908. Like his father, prominent in Democratic politics, he was elected county attorney of Dawes county and served five terms, from 1908 to 1919, and earlier had served as city attorney and city engineer of Chadron. He is active in business circles and is a member of the Reitz & Crites Lumber Company, of Chadron and Wayside, Nebraska. Mr. Crites is unmarried.
Frederick A. Crites, son of Albert Wallace and Mary Caroline (Hayt) Crites, was born at Plattsmouth, Nebraska, July 1, 1885. He. attended the Chadron high school, the Lincoln high school and the Nebraska State University at Lincoln and was admitted to the Nebraska bar. In November, 1918, he was elected on the Democratic ticket, county attorney of Dawes county, and was appointed by Hon. W. H. Munger, referee in bankruptcy, for this district, and is serving most satisfac-
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