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been born eleven children, nine of whom are still living: Barbara, John, Anna, Lena, who died at eight years of age and was buried in the Catholic cemetery at Sterling, Lizzie, Emma, Caroline, Carl, Albert, who died at the age of eight months and is buried in Turkey Creek cemetery, May and Lula. All the children are living in Nebraska with the exception of one daughter, Anna. Mr. Schmidt is a member of the Catholic church, and he is honored and respected by all who know him. 

Letter/label or barILTON M. WILDMAN, county judge of York county, Nebraska, was born in Piatt county, Illinois, October 25, 1856, a son of Thomas and Mary J. (Longnecker) Wildman, the former a native of New York and the latter of Kentucky. The father was a farmer and carpenter by occupation, and died in Illinois.

      Mr. Wildman received his preliminary education in the common schools of Illinois and afterward engaged in teaching in that state until 1882, when he went to York, Nebraska, and there taught school and worked at farming for a time. In 1885 he began the study of law and was admitted to the bar as a practitioner in 1887. The same year he entered the law school at Ann Arbor, Michigan, and graduated from same in 1888. He then located at York, and began the practice of his profession which he continued with increasing popularity until 1893, when he was elected county judge, which office he still holds, being re-elected in 1897. He has also performed the duties of the offices of city clerk and justice of the peace.

      March 20, 1881, Mr. Wildman was united in marriage to Miss Martha A. Valentine, a native of Ohio, and to this union have been born four children, all of whom are living and upon whom they have bestowed the following names: Holland R., Blaine C., Ethel L. and Pearl E. The judge is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America and also of the Royal Highlanders. Politically, he affiliates with the Republican party, and in all public matters he is, and has always been, one of the leaders, and his name is indissoluby associated with the history of the growth and development, and also the political history, of York county. He is interested in everything that has a tendency to promote the public good, and has contributed liberally of his means to all worthy enterprises. He is thoroughly American in his views, being in close sympathy with American methods and institutions. He possesses keen perceptions and is a close observer of all that is going on. 

Letter/label or barHOMAS NELSON HOLDERNESS, one of the present county commissioners of Butler county, and a representative business man of Rising City, is distinctively a man of affairs and one who has wielded a wide influence. A strong mentality and invincible courage, a most determined individuality have so entered into his makeup as to render him a natural leader of men and a director of opinion. Since the fall of 1875 he has been a resident of the county, and is now serving his fourth term as a commissioner, a fact which plainly indicates his popularity and the confidence and trust reposed in him by his fellow citizens.

     Mr. Holderness was born in Canada West, April 8, 1849, a son of Joseph Holderness, a native of England, whence he emigrated to Canada when a young man. There he married Elizabeth Drew, a daughter of Elisha Drew, who was of Scotch descent. Our subject is the youngest of the six sons born of this union, of whom three came to Nebraska, the others being Elisha and Isaiah. In 1850 during the infancy of T. N. Holderness, the family removed from Canada to De Kalb county, Illinois, where he grew to manhood upon a



farm, early becoming familiar with all the duties which fall to the lot of the agriculturist, while his education was obtained in the common schools.

      In 1875 Mr. Holderness came to Butler county, Nebraska, to visit a brother and decided to locate here. He engaged in buying and shipping horses until 1882, since, which time he has been interested in a number of business enterprises, principally in farming and real estate dealing. He is still the owner of a large and valuable farm in Reading township, Butler county, and his home in the south part of Rising City is one of the pleasantest places in the village. There hospitality reigns supreme, the many friends of the family always being sure of a hearty welcome, Mr. Holderness was married on the 31st of December, 1885, to Miss Ida Doty, a daughter of Gillis Doty, of Butler county. Two daughters graced this union: Nellie May and Winnie Bell, who died September 14, 1898.

      As a member of the board of county commissioners, Mr. Holderness has taken a most active part in the development and prosperity of this section of the state. While serving in this office fifty thousand dollars was voted by the board for the erection of a new court house at David City, and he continued a member during its construction. This elegant building now stands as a monument to the enterprise, honesty and fidelity of this board, of which Mr. Holderness is one of the most prominent members. 

Letter/label or barILLIAM P. MILLER, deceased, made his first appearance in Butler county, Nebraska, in 1870, in company with his uncle, Henry Miller. They had come on a prospecting trip, to determine for themselves the possibilities of this new section of the world, and were so pleased with what they heard and saw, that William P. Miller returned the following year and bought two sections of land. This land subsequently became the source of a large profit to him. He was living at that time in Lena, Stephenson county, Illinois, and was engaged in very extensive farming. He did not break away from his Illinois interests and remove his family to this state for several years.

      Mr. Miller was born in Clarion county, Pennsylvania. August 21, 1831, and spent his early days amid the quiet and seclusion of farm life. He was a son of George and Mary Miller, and accompanied them when they came west and located in Stephenson county, Illinois, after he was a man grown. It was in that county that he found and lost his first wife. Her name was Mary A. Bobb, and she became the mother of four children: John M., Joseph H., Alice E., and Mary A. Mr. Miller entered into matrimonial engagements a second time, April 6, 1876, Miss Kate Glock bestowing upon him the gift of her heart and hand. She was a daughter of Frederick Glock, and is a woman of many charming traits. She is still living and makes her home on the farm near Millerton, which is pronounced by competent critics to be one of the finest places in the county.

      In 1878 Mr. Miller removed his family to Nebraska, and made his home on his Butler county property until the day of his death, at which time he was the owner of fourteen hundred acres of farm land. He had other investments and was known as a prompt and reliable business man. The town of Millerton bears his name, and the impress of his strong character is on the community. He was a strong temperance man and a devoted member of the Lutheran church, and took a deep interest in every enterprise that looked to the morals and education of the community. He has entered into his rest, but his name is still green in many hearts. In politics he was a Democrat first and later a Prohibitionist. He



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WM. P. MILLER, Deceased.



always took an active interest in all matters that affected the public welfare.. His portrait appears on another page of this volume. 

Letter/label or barEV. FREDERICK SCHWARZ, pastor of the Lutheran church of Franklin township, Fillmore county, Nebraska, has for three years ministered faithfully to the spiritual needs of his people and given powerful and effective aid to all influences which work for the advancement of the community. Revered and loved by his own flock, he has also won the honor and esteem: of all others who have seen his devotion to his noble calling.

      Mr. Schwarz was born in Germany, November 12, 1863, a son of Frederick and Caroline (Siol) Schwarz, who spent their entire lives in that country. In their family were only two children, the daughter being Caroline, still a resident of Germany. Our subject went through the schools of his native land, and partly paid his own way through school by teaching and literary labors. In 1887 he crossed the Atlantic to the United States, his destination being Nebraska, where he at once entered upon the work of the ministry as pastor of a congregation in Dawson county. He filled this charge in this state, winning the love and respect of all with whom he came in contact, and for seven years he had charge of a congregation at Greenleaf, Kansas, doing missionary work in other places besides. It was during his ministerial work there that he was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth Woeltje, who was born August 18, 1873, a daughter of Eide and Kate (Riel) Woeltje, who are prominent farming people living near Greenleaf. To Mr. and Mrs. Schwarz have been born two children: Evangeline and Benedict..

      Our subject has done missionary work in Kansas, Colorado, South Dakota and Nebraska, and in May, 1896, accepted his present charge in Franklin township, Fillmore county, and has succeeded in canceling a debt of two thousand dollars on the new church there. He is a true and earnest Christian who has devoted his life to the saving of souls, has been secretary and presiding officer of his conference and has lately been elected traveling representative of his synod. It is his intention to devote his time to the states of Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, Oklahoma, or any west of: Ohio. His wife has been a true helpmeet to him in his work, and together they have labored for the good of those around them with most gratifying results. 

Letter/label or barHARLES MINNEY, residing on section 26, Belle Prairie precinct, Fillmore county, Nebraska, presents in his life what may be accomplished by perseverance, industry and close application to business. He commenced life at the foot of the ladder, but blessed with a prudent and sensible wife as a helpmate, he is now able to take life easily and comfortably, and is the owner of a fine farm, which he still successfully operates.

      Mr. Minney was born June 2, 1834, and is a son of John and Mary Minney, natives of Scotland, who died in the prime of life while living in New Jersey, and were buried there. In their family were only two children, the daughter being Mary, who wedded a Mr. Huffman and now lives in Mauch Chunk, Pennsylvania, His father dying when our subject was only eleven years of age, he was early thrown upon his own resources for a livelihood and his educational privileges therefore were limited. He attended private schools in New Jersey for a short time, paying his own tuition. He began work as a farm hand at two dollars per month, and was employed as such until he was twenty-five years of age



      On the 3d of December, 1858, Mr. Minney was united in marriage with Miss Lovinah Tompkins, who was born in Tiskilwa, Bureau county, Illinois, August 24, 1840, a daughter of Alfred and Mary Tompkins. The mother died in Illinois, after which the father went to Texas, where he passed away after a brief illness. Of their ten children, only three survive: Margaretta, Louisa and Mary. Fourteen children were born to our subject and his wife, all of whom are still living, namely: John Charles Fremont, William T., Alexander H., Martin, David F., Earnest, George W., Arthur, Mary E., Loella, Rosa, Fanny, May and Grace. Five of the daughters are married and three of the boys. Twelve grandchildren have been born.

      Mr. and Mrs. Minney began their domestic life in Illinois, where he engaged in farming upon rented land for fifteen years. In February, 1865, he enlisted in Company H, Ninth Illinois Cavalry, but was soon afterward taken ill and was not able to go to the front for some time. On the first of June, however, he joined his regiment at Pittsburg Landing, and remained in the service until long after hostilities ceased, being mustered out at Selma, Alabama, November 1, 1865.

      Returning to his home in Illinois, Mr. Minney continued his farming operations there until 1871, when, with his wife and six children, he started for Nebraska with an emigrant wagon drawn by a yoke of oxen, and when he landed in Belle Prairie precinct, Fillmore county, May 25, his entire earthly possessions consisted of two yoke of oxen and his wagon. The family lived in the wagon for several weeks until a little lumber could be secured for a rude cabin. Mr. Minney raised a crop of wheat before he was able to pay the cost of filing and entering a homestead claim, and he experienced many hardships and privations in his attempt to secure for himself and family a good home, He had to go to Pleasant Hill or other points equally distant to do his trading. The district schools, however, were started in 1872, and in his district was a sod schoolhouse and there was a state fund to maintain the same. His children have been provided with good, practical educations and are well fitted for life's responsible duties. After an illness of a few weeks' duration, Mrs. Minney died, February 25, 1890, and was laid to rest in Harmony cemetery, Belle Prairie precinct.

      Mr. Minney has been quite a wanderer, and has either visited or lived in the following states: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. He is a good citizen and one of the influential and highly respected men of his community. He cast his first presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln, and has since supported the men and measures of the Republican party. 

Letter/label or barOHN F. RANN.-- This gentleman worthily illustrates the commonly accepted view of the character of the enterprising German citizen, who made his way into the western country at a time when strong hands and stout hearts were needed, and putting his shoulder to the wheel gave a decided impetus to the car of progress and assisted in opening up the country to civilization. He is a native of Schleiswig-Holstein, Germany, born May 28, 1819, and is a son of John and Catherine (Maltzen) Rann, in whose family were nine children, but all remained in the fatherland with the exception of our subject. He was educated in the common schools of that country and confirmed in the Lutheran church at the age of fifteen years. At the age of sixteen he commenced learning the shoemaker's trade, which he followed for some years. When twenty-two he was drafted in the



German army, participating in the war with Denmark, in 1848, and remained in the service for two years and a half. In 1850 he was united in marriage with Miss Anna Deishler, and to them were born six children, one son, who died in infancy, and five daughters, namely: Christina, Anna, Abbie, Minnie and Amelia. The wife and mother died while living in Nebraska, at the age of sixty-five years, and was laid to rest in Yankee Hill cemetery, Seward county.

      In 1854, Mr. Rann with his family left Hamburg and by way of Liverpool came to the United States, arriving in New York city in October of that year. He proceeded almost immediately to Davenport, Iowa, and from there went to Hennepin county, Minnesota, where he engaged in farming from 1851 to 1864. With the intention of moving with his family to Montana in the latter year, he started west, but was driven back by the Indians, the company of emigrants losing twelve able bodied men in two days' skirmishing and fighting. The white men then took refuge in the Black Hills near the Little Missouri river, where they lay in camp for seventeen days, being in constant danger all the time. Finally the Indians showed signs of friendliness and presented the white men with a letter from the noted chief Sitting Bull to the effect that for a favorable consideration of property he would deliver up to them a Mrs. Keller who had been captured from a Minnesota emigrant train under Captain Fisk in 1846, the rest of the company being slain and wounded. Her husband was among the wounded, but managed to escape to Missouri, where she joined him after her release. It was finally agreed that they should give three horses, one wagon and a load of provisions in exchange for the prisoner, but as the Indians failed to keep their part of the contract, a fight ensued. By strategy another chief and twelve of his braves entered the camp of Sitting Bull, located Mrs. Keller and at a preconcerted moment bore her off and safely delivered her to the commander of Fort Sully. While the skirmishing was going on between the white men and the Indians, this band treated the red men to some food which caused many to become ill and some died.

      Mr. Rann and his family finally retired to Omaha, where he spent the following winter, and in the spring moved to Crescent City, Pottawattomie county, Iowa, where he purchased ten lots and a house, making his home there from 1865 until 1880. He then again started westward, his destination this time being Montana, where for three years and a half he successfully engaged in gold mining. While in that state he also had many exciting adventures with the Indians and endured many hardships and privations. At Fort Stephenson after fighting for his own life with a grizzly bear, he finally succeeded in killing the animal, and he killed many buffaloes, which furnished him with meat most of the time. He had made considerable money and on his return to Crescent City, Iowa, in 1868, he resumed farming and invested some of his capital in a large herd of cattle, continuing to prosper in his undertakings. In 1875 he went to Oregon, where he purchased a farm .and made his home until 1890. Since then he has practically lived retired, spending his summers on his farm in Pottawattomie county, Iowa, and the winter season in Pleasant Dale, Seward county, Nebraska, having invested largely in real estate in both the town and this county. Now at the age of eighty years, he is still hale and hearty and is very active, devoting a great deal of time to travel. He cast his first presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln, and since that time has generally supported the men and measures of the Republican party. For the success he has achieved in life he deserves much credit, for it is all due to his own industry, enterprise and good manage-



ment, and his course in life has been such as to win for him the confidence and esteem of all with whom he has come in contact. 

Letter/label or barOHN MANSFIELD, an old and honored citizen of Fillmore county, residing on section 19, Momence precinct, is now retired from the labors of a long and active life, and is spending his declining days in the midst of ease and plenty. He is a native of Sweden, born February 4, 1829, and in that country was educated in the public schools and confirmed in the Lutheran church. For twenty-six years he served in the Swedish army, and continued a resident of his native land until he attained the age of fifty.

      When twenty-three, Mr. Mansfield was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Johnson, who was born in Sweden, January 4, 1831, and is one of a family of nine children, whose parents were John and Nellie (Lindbom) Johnson. Our subject and his wife became the parents of ten children, all born in Sweden, but only five are now living, namely: William, Annie, Elsie, Julius and Emil, who were young when brought by their parents to America, and were educated in the schools of this country. All make their homes in Nebraska, and the daughters are married and living on farms. Julius is a graduate of a business college of Omaha, and is now a conductor on a street railway in that city, while the other sons are prominent farmers of Fillmore county, and William has served as assessor of his township for two years.

      In 1879, Mr. Mansfield with his family crossed the broad Atlantic, landing in New York, whence they went to Portland, Connecticut. After a short stay in that place, they removed to Omaha where they lived for two years and a half, coming to Fillmore county in the spring of 1883. The year previous Mr. Mansfield had purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land in Momence. precinct, for one thousand and two hundred dollars, but it was entirely unimproved, not a building having been erected thereon. The land was soon placed under excellent cultivation, a comfortable house and good barns and outbuildings erected, and it is now one of the best farms in the locality. Although our subject had but one dollar and fifty cents when he located upon the place, he has prospered from year to year, and is now able to lay aside business cares and enjoy the fruits of his former unremitting toil. He and his sons are strong advocates of the principles of the Populist party, and for ten years he efficiently served as school treasurer in his district. With his wife and children he holds membership in the Swedish Lutheran church, and the family is one of the most prominent and highly respected in the community in which they live. 

Letter/label or barAMUEL I. BITTINGER, one of the pioneers of Morton township, York county, was born in Franklin county, Pennsylvania, August 20, 1852, a son of John Bittinger, whose name appears in the sketch of Fred Bittinger on another page of this volume.

      Our subject moved west with his parents when quite young, settled in Iowa, was educated in that state, and made his home there until 1872. He then moved with his parents and brothers to York county, Nebraska, and there engaged in operating the homestead farm for ten years. In 1873, he bought a piece of railroad land on section , Morton township, and has since farmed and improved tha (sic) tract and has developed it into one of the finest farms in the county. He also owns one hundred and sixty acres of farm land on section 14, of the same township.

      In March, 1884, Mr. Bittinger was united in marriage to Miss Mary A. Heaton, a daughter of Henry and Harriet (Church)



Heaton. Mr. and Mrs. Heaton came to York county with their family in 1880. Mrs. Heaton died in this county, but her husband is still living and is making his home with Mr. and Mrs. Bittinger. Our subject and Mrs. Bittinger are the parents of a family of three children, whose names, in the order of their birth, are as follows: Albert N., Verna M. and Roy R., all of whom are living. In politics our subject is independent of parties. As a farmer he has been quite, successful and is well-known throughout the community as a man of influence, and one whose character is beyond reproach. 

Letter/label or barRANCIS W. NORTON, one of the leading and influential farmers of Fillmore county, Nebraska, whose home is on section 32, Hamilton township, was born in Massachusetts, in 1834, and is a worthy representative of one of the old and prominent families of that state, where his parents, John W. and Esther (Naramore) Norton, spent their entire lives, as did also his grandparents on both sides. His father died at the age of sixty-seven years, and both were laid to rest in the cemetery at Cummington, Massachusetts. They were numbered among the most highly respected and honored citizens of their community. Their children now living are Elizabeth, Edward, Charles and F. W.

      In the common schools of his native state our subject acquired a good practical education, and at the age of twenty-two years he removed to Illinois. He manifested his patriotism and love of country by enlisting in August, 1862, in Company K, Ninety-third Illinois Volunteer Infantry, which was assigned to General McPherson's command, and participated in the battles of Jackson, Champion Hill, Black River Bridge and the siege of Vicksburg. His first captain, David Lloyd, was killed at the hotly contested battle of Champion Hill. After the siege of Vicksburg, Mr. Norton was placed in General Logan's command and went to Chattanooga, Tenn. He was with Sherman on his celebrated march to the sea, and with that general proceeded to Washington, District of Columbia, where he took part in the grand review. He also saw the signals given by Sherman to General Corse to hold the fort for he was coming.

      After being mustered out of the service at Louisville, Kentucky, Mr. Norton returned to his home in Princeton, Illinois. It was there that he became acquainted with Miss Julia Bryant, a daughter of Cyrus and Julia (Everett) Bryant, and at Princeton their marriage was celebrated November 22, 1866. They have two children: Bessie E. and Charles B., who are at home. Mrs. Norton was born February 3, 1845, in Princeton, Illinois, where she was reared and educated, and she too belongs to a most distinguished and prominent family of Massachusetts. There her father was born in 1798, and he died at his beautiful home in Princeton, Illinois, in 1865. He was a son of Dr. Peter Bryant, who was born in Massachusetts in 1767, and died in that state, in 1820. The other sons of the family were: Austin, who was born in 1793 and died in 1866; William Cullen Bryant, the noted poet, who was born in 1794 and died in 1878; Arthur, who was born in 1803 and died in 1883; and John H., who was born in 1807 and is still living. Mrs. Norton's parents removed to Princeton, Illinois, in 1834, and with the exception of the poet; her uncles also became residents of that place. She has a sister, Mrs. Charity B. Robinson, of Princeton, Illinois, and three brothers, of whom Everett and Peter are now living retired in Holton, Kansas. Cullen was in the United States military service for over thirty years and was holding the rank of major when he resigned on account of advanced age. He is now living in



elegant style in Alameda, California. Mrs. Norton's mother was born in Massachusetts in 1808, a daughter of James and Phoebe Everett, and died in Princeton, Illinois, in 1875. She and her husband now sleep side by side in the cemetery at that place.

      In April, 1884, Mr. and Mrs. Norton removed from Illinois to Fillmore county, Nebraska, and took up their residence in Hamilton precinct, where he had previously purchased one hundred and sixty acres of raw land for five dollars and fifty cents. This he has converted into his present delightful home. Convenient buildings of modern architecture have been erected, and the place is adorned with beautiful shade trees. The family receive and merit the high regard of the entire community and those who know them best are numbered among their warmest friends. 

Letter/label or barILLIAM K. LOUGHRIDGE, M. D., of Pleasant Dale, Seward county, Nebraska, is one of the most prominent and successful physicians in this section of the state. He is one of the younger members of the profession but his popularity is by no means measured by his years; on the contrary he has won a reputation which many an older practitioner might well envy.

      The Doctor was born in Wllkesbarre, Pennsylvania, March 24, 1873, and is a son of William Loughridge, a native of Belfast, County Antrim, Ireland, who emigrated to America when twenty-one years of age and first located in New York, where he found employment in a railroad machine shop, having previously worked at that occupation in England. Subsequently he went to Georgia, where he continued to work at his trade until the yellow fever broke out and he returned north, settling this time in Wilkesbarre, Pennsylvania. Here he became acquainted with Miss Agnes M. Kessler, and on the 14th of September, 1868, they were united in marriage. Two children blessed this union: James and William K. The former, who is a blacksmith and wheelright by trade, married Miss Luella Brown, of Murray, Nebraska, and now lives in Wyoming, this state. When our subject was only six years old the family removed to Plattsmouth, Nebraska, where the father worked in the B. & M. machine shops, but the parents now make their home in Murray, where he continued to follow his chosen occupation, blacksmithing and wagonmaking. As a public-spirited and enterprising citizen, he is quite prominent in the community, and also stands high in Masonic circles. Politically, he is a Republican, and both he and his estimable wife are devout members of the Presbyterian church. They have a very pleasant home in Murray, where they delight to entertain their many friends. On the paternal side the Doctor's ancestors were mostly mechanics and ministers, and on the maternal side they were merchants.

     Dr. Loughridge obtained his literary education in the common schools of this state, and at the age of sixteen entered the high school of Plattsmouth, where he pursued his studies for two years. In the meantime he devoted his leisure hours to helping his father in the blacksmith's shop and on the farm. On leaving the high school he commenced the study of medicine, and later entered the medical department of Cotner University, Lincoln, Nebraska, where he was graduated with high honors on the 13th of March, 1894. He began the practice of his chosen profession in Lincoln with Dr. J. S. Eaton, and remained there one month and came to Pleasant Dale the 11th of May, 1894. Soon after his graduation he was elected lecturer of neurology in the medical department of Cotner University, which he held until the year of 1895, when he was elected professor of disease's of children, which position he

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