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consin 700 sheep, the first brought to this part of the State. Their venture proved to be an abundant success. and when they dissolved partnership not long after each had 2,000 head. Mr. Myers bought sheep from the East, always seeking to obtain the finest animals of the best grades, until he became the owner of 2,500 head. With these he continued his ranch and business until 1873, when he removed to Gage County, remaining in that business until 1884, carrying at all times a very large stock of the most valuable class of animals. In 1884 he sold all excepting some thoroughbred Merino sheep, of which he was reputed to possess the best in the United States. In 1888 he realized from his 220 sheep 4,325 pounds of Merino wool, an average of nineteen pounds and eleven ounces, being the highest yield for any entire flock in the United States.
Mr. Myers settled upon the premises now occupied by him in the year 1882, while the land was yet in its unimproved state. To-day he is the owner of one of the finest farms and residences in the county. His farm comprises 240 acres, but his total real estate includes 1,360 acres. Six miles north of his home he has a farm of 320 acres; the balance of the estate is in Kansas. He is engaged now as a breeder of thoroughbred draft horses and roadsters, and in this he is just as deeply interested and thorough and successful as in sheep-rearing. In presenting the view of Mr. Myers' home place the artist has sketched some of the magnificent animals of which he is the owner. The splendid specimens of the horse and sheep shown in the view should be a source of gratification to their owner, and a satisfaction to the farmers of the community to know that they have near them such valuable stock.
Mrs. Myers died in March, 1863, leaving three children: Sophia, now the wife of Dr. B. B. Davis, of McCook, Neb.; Frank H.. and Julia L., who is the wife of J. W. Mayer, of Beatrice. Oct. 20, 1864, Mr. Myers was married a second time, the lady being Miss Anna Slater, and by this union there have been seven children, three living--Mary, Ada and Kirk; those deceased are Willie E., Edward, Julius and Walter. Mrs. Myers is the daughter of Jerry and Mary (Barraclough) Slater; they were both natives of Yorkshire, England. In 1849 they settled in Racine County, Wis. Mrs. Myers was also born in Bradford, Yorkshire. Our subject was the first Supervisor of Midland Township, an office in common with every other, he would rather be excused from. His political aspirations are to see the best men holding the reins of Government, the men who will rule and govern, direct and manage affairs with a view to the best interests of the people. He is a stanch Republican and a strong supporter of the principles of that party. He is one eminently respected, and also regarded as among the best and most valued citizens, not only in Midland Township, but of Gage County.
AMES H. SCOTT came to this county in 1869, when there was not a house in sight from his home, which was situated on quite an eminence south of the place now occupied by the city of Wymore. His nearest neighbor lived over beyond where the city now stands, and the business portion of the neighboring city of Blue Springs consisted of only a store and a post-office. Mr. Scott bought a homestead where the city of Wymore now stands, at second hand, paying only $2 per acre. He was here for five or ten years before the population was much increased, and after the city began to flourish he remained here until 1884, when he went down to his land in Kansas and remained four years, making some improvements. He returned to Wymore in 1888.
Our subject was born in DeWitt County, Ill., in 1837,and lived there until he became a young man, when he went with his mother to Iowa, thence to Missouri, where he lived for quite a time, then coming to this place, dividing part of the time between his present home and his land in Kansas. He has seen the improvements as they were made since the time that a bare prairie lay stretching its undulations before the eye to the present thriving city of 3,000 inhabitants.
Mr. Scott was united in marriage with Miss Goodwin, who died leaving two children--James W. and Levi W. Then he was married to Miss Mary C. Tisdale, and to them there have been born seven children. They are all at home with their parents,
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the older ones having the best advantages for receiving their education, and we name them as follows: Andrew C., Lillie May, Nancy I., Alexander, Benjamin B. and Henry J.
For nineteen years our subject has lived in this vicinity, and has built for himself a fine house on the bluff south of the city. He has improved his farm and divided up a goodly portion of it into city lots, which of course were very valuable. He has given attention to general farming and stock-raising, and is the owner of seventy acres of land, part of which lies within the city limits, besides other town lots; and in Hodgeman County, Kan., he has a half section of good land. He enjoys the best reputation, and by all of his townspeople he is highly mentioned as an honorable friend and neighbor. William Scott, his father, was born in the East, afterward moving to Ohio, and died when our subject was only five or six years old. Scott's Addition to Wymore was made and recorded six years ago, and is now all improved. Much credit is due our subject for his enterprising and honorable mode of conducting business, and to him is the city indebted for a goodly share of its improvements.
ERCY J. SMETHERS. There are few more attractive homesteads within the limits of Gage County than that owned and occupied by the subject of this sketch, who is one of the younger members in its farming community, and who is pleasantly located on the southeast quarter of section 29, in Glenwood Township. Here he has a neat and substantial residence, a good barn, and the other buildings necessary for the successful prosecution of his calling. He has planted a large number of fruit and shade trees, and gradually added the other embellishments which form the complete home and serve to increase the beauty and value of his property. The traveler passing through this section will notice this farm and form his opinion as to the habits and character of the proprietor.
Mr. Smethers comes of good Pennsylvania stock, his parents, Josiah and Mary (Hill) Smethers, having been natives of the Keystone State, born, reared and married in Luzerne County. From there in about 1853 they emigrated to Lee County, Ill., settling near Dixon, where the father carried on farming. They came to the State of Nebraska in the year 1878 and here settled on a farm in Glenwood Township, where they lived until 1887, then took up their abode in Lanham, where they now reside. They became the parents of ten children, five sons and five daughters, of whom Percy J. was the third child. He was born in Lee County, Ill., Sept. 30, 1856, where he lived until a young man of twenty-two years, becoming familiar with farm pursuits and acquiring his education in the common schools.
Not long after reaching his majority our subject was united in marriage with one of the most estimable young ladies of his native county, Miss Mary Uhl, who was born June 17, 1857, and is the daughter of Hiram and Margaret (Wilhelm) Uhl, who were natives of Pennsylvania. The mother departed this life in Lee County, Ill., about 1858, and the father still resides there. Their family consisted of four children, two now living. Mr. Uhl subsequently married Nancy Hughes, by whom he had four children.
Mr. and Mrs. Smethers lived in the Prairie State a year after marriage, then came with the parents of our subject to this county. They located in Beatrice, where they lived one year and one-half, when Mr. S. bought 160 acres of Government land which comprises his present farm, and which was a part of the Otoe reservation. It was in an uncultivated condition, and it is hardly necessary to say that it has required no small amount of labor and good management to bring it to its present state. Each year sees something added to its value, and already in its appointments there are mirrored the essential requirements of the complete rural home, the abode of peace and plenty, and one of the best monuments of industry and perseverance that a man can build for himself.
Mr. Smethers signified his early political views by casting his first Presidential vote for Gen. Hancock, and has since uniformly supported Democratic principles. Religiously, he and his excellent wife belong to the English Lutheran Church. They have three children: Nettie V., Elroy and Stella F.,
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the eldest ten years of age and the youngest two. Mr. Smethers believes in the education of the young, and his children will be given the advantages suitable to their position in the community. He has always maintained a warm interest in the social and moral welfare of his township, and in his district has served as Treasurer of the school fund.
OHN HAND is an honored pioneer of Paddock Township, he being one of the very first settlers in this neighborhood. When he came here in 1878, and bought of the Government his present place, comprising 160 acres on section 26, there was but one other settler here, S. S. Spires, who had preceded him only a short time previously. Then A. McClung settled on a quarter of section 34, a few weeks later. All the country around was wild, unbroken prairie, the haunt of numerous Indians, and the home of wolves, deer, and other wild game. In the decade that has elapsed since then Mr. Hand has witnessed many wonderful changes. and has taken an active part in bringing about the present advanced condition of the township and county. His experience as a pioneer was fraught with many interesting incidents, and as related by him, are well worth listening to; we are sorry that the brevity of this biographical sketch will not allow us to insert an account of his early life in this county in these pages.
Mr. Hand was born in Tuscarawas County, Ohio, March 7, 1830. His parents were Thomas and Charity (Andrews) Hand, natives respectively of Ohio and Maryland. The father was born in 1801, and died in his native State, Aug. 28, 1852, having scarcely passed the prime of life. His estimable wife survived him many years, her death occurring in Ohio in 1873. She was born in 1798, and when fourteen years of age left her native Maryland to live in Ohio, where she spent the remainder of her life.
The son of that worthy couple, who forms the subject of this sketch, was reared in his native county, and made his home there until twenty-one years of age. Being a vigorous, enterprising young man, ambitious to make his own way in the world, he left Tuscarawas County when he attained his majority, and went to Van Wert County, in the same State, where he lived for several years. There he met Miss Julia A. Whitby, and they were united in marriage Jan. 21, 1855. She is a model wife and mother, devoted to the interests of her family. Of this marriage eight children have been born, five of whom survive.
After marriage Mr. Hand continued to reside in Ohio for some years, but in 1868 he removed with his family to Clinton County, Iowa, where they lived until 1878, when they came to Nebraska, and located in their present home. At that time Mr. Hand's financial condition was at a low ebb, and after arranging for the purchase of a quarter-section of Government land which formed a part of the reservation, he had just enough money left to make the first payment. Prosperity has since smiled upon him, and he has been enabled to improve his land into as fine a farm as there is in this neighborhood, and the harvests that he reaps from it put him in possession of a good yearly income. He has erected a cozy and conveniently arranged house, a stable, and has other necessary out-buildings, and his place is neat and well-kept in appearance.
Mr. and Mrs. Hand are highly respected in this community; they are sincere Christians, and were formerly connected with the Wesleyan Methodist Church, while they were residents of Ohio. Mr. Hand is a man of unblemished repute, is careful and considerate in his dealings with others; he is a hard and constant worker, with much practical sagacity. and is highly deserving of the prosperity that has resulted from his efforts. He is a straight Republican in his political sentiments, and never fails to give his hearty support to the candidates of his party at the polls.
OHN KEPPLE, one of the progressive and prosperous farmers of Barneston Township, was born in Westmoreland County, Pa., on the 12th of November, 1835. His father, Jacob Kepple, now deceased, was born in the same place, of German descent. The maiden name of his wife, the mother of our subject, was Martha
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Deemer, a native of Pennsylvania to whom he was married about 1825. Their family circle included ten children, and of these our subject was the fifth child. It was their privilege to see their children grow up and enter upon honorable and useful careers. They are scattered in various parts of the Eastern States, and so far as is known the circle is yet unbroken by death.
In the public schools of his native county our subject busily employed the days of his youth, and is possessed of a fairly thorough English education. On leaving school he engaged in farming, and in the spring of 1865 went to St. Anthony Falls, Minn., but before the winter set in had removed to Rock Island County, Ill. In the former-place he had worked in a sawmill. but upon moving to Illinois he engaged on a farm, and so continued until 1872, when he went to New Mexico, and was occupied in mining, and thence three years later he went to the Black Hills, traveling through the mountains, mining a little and prospecting. This continued for about three years, by which time he came to Nemaha City; that was in the year 1878. His removal to this county dates from 1881, when he settled upon his present farm.
Mr. Kepple is one who has never drained the cup of matrimonial bliss, and yet withal seems to thrive and prosper, although denying himself such companionship.
ILAN E. CHAPMAN, operating as general insurance agent and auctioneer at Beatrice, cast his lot with the people of Southern Nebraska in July of 1886, and has been closely identified with the interests of this county since that time. He previously lived a year in the western part of the State. A native of Bureau County, Ill., he was born near the little town of Walnut, July 18, 1861, and was the fourth in a family of five sons, the offspring of Ozias E. and Sarah (Beeman) Chapman, who were natives of Medina County, Ohio. Our subject is the namesake of his paternal grandfather. Ozias Chapman was a successful farmer and stock-raiser, and, leaving the Buckeye State at an early period in his life, settled in Bureau County, Ill., where both parents still live at the old homestead.
The subject of this sketch was reared a farmer's boy, and pursued his first studies in the district school. He was fond of his books and ambitious to learn, and at an early age developed into a teacher, officiating as pedagogue in the building where his father and subsequently his four brothers had discharged the same duties. Young Chapman, in the spring of 1885, striking out for himself, started for the State of Nebraska, and located first at Clay Center in Clay County, establishing in the business to which he still gives his attention. Six months later he removed to Phelps County, and became editor of the Bertrand Journal, with which he was engaged four months. Then returning to Illinois he was married, June 30, 1886, to Miss Lizzie A. Waterhouse, and then, selecting Beatrice as his future field of operations, came to this city, where he has since resided. Not long afterward he associated himself in partnership with J. W. Ebersol, and as Ebersol, Chapman & Co., they operated together for eighteen months, when Mr. Chapman purchased the interest of his partner and succeeded to the business, which he has since carried on alone. His insurance transactions represent the leading companies of the United States, including the Hartford of Connecticut, the German-American of New York State, and many others equally prominent and popular. He also represents the Mutual Life of New York, and the Union Central, of Cincinnati, Ohio. In politics he is a stanch Republican.
USTIN L. WAY was born in Ashtabula County, Ohio, on the 26th of October, 1829, and is the son of Elisha and Anna Way, who were natives of Connecticut and Massachusetts respectively. The early years of his life were spent on a farm in his native county, where he remained until the year 1854, the greater part of the time at the home of his parents. In that year he moved to Henry County, Ill., and settled near Kewanee, in which place he made his home until 1871, being engaged in farming. He then went to Page County, Iowa, and again en-
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gaged in farming on some land which he had formerly purchased, remaining there until 1881, when he came to this county, and settled in Glenwood Township. He owns 160 acres of good farming land on section 2, on which he has made noticeable improvements, both in the state of its cultivation and in the manner in which he has adorned it with a good house, barn, and all the necessary farm buildings and fences. He is engaged in general farming and stock-raising.
On the 26th of October, 1879, our subject was united in marriage, in Kewanee, Ill., with Miss Anna Butterwick, who is a native of Newcastle, England. She is the daughter of Thomas and Anna Butterwick. By this marriage they have become the parents of seven children, who are named: Ella, Bertha, Ross, Daisy, Haven, Howard and Lloyd. Both Mr. and Mrs. Way are active members of the Baptist Church, and are highly esteemed in society. The former advocates the cause of the Republican party in politics, and as far as he is able aids in the upbuilding of his section. Among business men his word is as binding as would be a written agreement, and it is always understood that he can be relied upon doing whatever he promises to do. His integrity and uprightness of character are unimpeachable, and among good and public-spirited citizens he stands in the first rank.
AMES C. BRINKWORTH is Chairman of the Board of Public Works of the beautiful and tasty city of Beatrice, upon whom rests largely the responsibility of many of the most important works that have for their object the public welfare. In Somersetshire, England, our subject was born on the 20th of July, 1853. His father, John Brinkworth, a native of the same county, was a farmer, and had charge of some 600 acres, so that our subject became fully accustomed to agricultural life even from his earliest childhood. The maiden name of the mother of our subject was Fannie Uncles. Of this union thirteen children were born, ten of them grew to maturity, and all of them have come to this country.
It was the good fortune of our subject to receive that valuable inheritance, a good education, first under a private governess, who instructed him in the more elementary branches preparatory to his admission to the Crosscombe Academy, at Crosscombe, England, which he attended for several years, and from which he was graduated. He was seventeen years of age when he came to this country in company with his parents and the other members of the family. They settled in Livingston County, Ill., and engaged in agricultural pursuits, in which also our subject continued for three years. For the six years immediately following he was engaged working with one man at the carpenter trade, and in that time became a very expert master workman, fully competent to take charge of anything in his line and execute it in a proper manner.
Becoming acquainted with the daughter of Benjamin F. Hotchkiss, of Odell, Livingston County, Mr. Brinkworth was united in marriage to her Dec. 25, 1874. There have been born to them three children: Bennie, who was born in Illinois and died at Beatrice, aged seventeen months; James Edwin and Edith Beatrice, whose presence in the home have made it more attractive and felicitous.
Miss Hattie Hotchkiss, the wife of our subject, was born at Ottawa, Ill., on the 21st of May, 1853. Her father is deceased. The maiden name of his wife was Delia Baldwin. Their residence in this State dates from March, 1877. They were the parents of five children, of whom their daughter Hattie is the youngest. The mother resides in Beatrice.
Mr. and Mrs. Brinkworth came to Nebraska in March, 1877, and with their one child settled in Beatrice, which even at that time gave promise of a noteworthy future although then very small, and, owing to the undeveloped surroundings, somewhat dull. At this time our subject was comparatively poor in purse and possessions of that nature, but rich in having sound health, a clear mind, and a thorough knowledge of a good trade and of agriculture.
Immediately establishing his family in as nice a home as he could, our subject set to work and invested all his ready money in lands, city property etc., buying rather with a view of holding than of
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selling, but conducting that feature of his business somewhat according to circumstances. From this beginning he has steadily progressed until he has attained his present position, which is one indicative of unqualified success. Besides his exceptionally good residence on South Seventh street, he is the owner of various valuable city properties.
The growth of the city of Beatrice necessitated the organization of a Board of Public Works, of which it is the honor of our subject to be the first Chairman, to which position he was appointed by Mayor E. O. Kretsinger for a term of two years. Every duty devolving upon him in the execution of the functions of his office has been so performed as to win the heartiest congratulation and appreciation of the citizens. Owing to his careful supervision, the city sewerage is almost perfect--a most important matter from the standpoint of health. In politics he is a Republican. Mr. and Mrs. Brinkworth are respected citizens.
OHN R. HIGGINS, in the spring of 1882, settled upon a tract of wild land on section 26, in Grant Township, which by the exercise of constant industry he has transformed into a valuable farm. It is 160 acres in extent, already fairly well supplied with good buildings, and each year adds something to the attractiveness and value of the property. Not the least among the surroundings conducive to the comfort of the family is a fine young orchard of choice apple trees, and Mr. H. has also planted shade trees, having in view the comfort of his live stock and the general embellishment of the farm.
Peoria, Ill., had formerly been the home of our subject, where he lived from the time he first drew breath until reaching manhood. He was born Aug. 22, 1854, and is the son of James and Mary (Burns) Higgins, who settled in Peoria County during its pioneer days. James Higgins was born in Ireland, and crossed the Atlantic when a mere boy, settling with his parents at Peoria, Ill., during the days when it was known as Ft. Clark. There he was reared to manhood, receiving a limited education, and married Miss Burns, whose parents had likewise emigrated to the West about the same time that the parents of Mr. Higgins settled in Peoria County His father, James Higgins, was a marble cutter by trade, and at this employment spent the greater par of his active life, he was a man of many excellent qualities and became one of the most highly respected citizens of Peoria, where he spent many years, and where his death occurred when his son our subject, was but a lad of tender years. The mother had previously passed away, and thus young John R. was orphaned at an early age. He had two brothers and one sister, and upon the death of the father the family was scattered, the brothers having to take care of themselves, and the sister died in Peoria in infancy. James Higgins, the younger brother of our subject, is a resident of Virginia, and engaged in the hardware business.
John R. Higgins, thrown upon his own resources early in life, made his way through many difficulties and secured a practical education. This experience, however, proved of essential benefit, making him independent and self-reliant, and fitting him admirably for the difficulties which art the common lot of man. He suffered no discouragement to overcome him, and in due time began to see his way toward the establishment of a home of his own. On the 1st of March, 1877, he was united in marriage with Miss Melissa, daughter of Peter and Melissa (Robinson) Sheen, the wedding taking place at the home of the bride in Woodford County, Ill. Peter Sheen was formerly one of time most prominent residents of Peoria, whence became to Nebraska about 1882. He is now an extensive land-owner in Grant Township. He settled in Peoria when it was a mere hamlet containing but one store. He married his wife there, and she is yet spared to her home and family.
Mrs. Higgins was born in Peoria, Ill., April 22, 1857, and was reared to womanhood in her native town, acquiring a common-school education. She was carefully trained by an excellent mother to those habits of industry and economy which have fitted her to preside properly over time home which has been built up solely by honest labor. Of her union with our subject there have been born four children, two of whom, Arthur and Jessie, are living. Herbert and an infant died at the age of
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about twenty days. Mr. Higgins has very little time to devote to political matters but keeps himself informed upon current events, and uniformly votes the Democratic ticket. Both he and his excellent wife stand well among their neighbors, and their home forms the resort of a large circle of warm friends.
SAAC O. BRACE. Among the farmers of Glenwood Township whose intimate knowledge of their calling and success in the same are worthy of mention in connection with any volume treating of the township, is the subject of the present writing, whose farm is situated upon section 9, and is 160 acres in extent. He is the son of Isaac and Avey (Rippberger) Brace. The father of our subject was born in Spencer. N. Y.. March 17, 1823; his mother in Germany.
Our subject, the only child of his parents, was born in Silver Creek Township, Stephenson Co., Ill., Nov. 27, 1855, and was left motherless when about two years of age. The years of his childhood and youth were spent upon the farm and in the common school of the township, and as a young man he worked upon his father's farm, continuing to do so until the year 1876, when he went to California, remaining for two years. The first was spent upon a ranch, the second in the mountains, and was not altogether wanting in success. He then returned to Stephenson County, and remained until 1879, when he came to this county with his father, and settled in Midland Township, where they made their home until 1886. Then our subject removed to his present property in Glenwood. Into the work of improving his farm in this county our subject has entered with intelligent enthusiasm, concentrating his energies, and bestowing much hard labor upon it, with results that must be gratifying.
While a resident in Midland Township Mr. Brace became the husband of Miss Maggie McCune, on the 25th of February, 1885. This lady is the daughter of David and Sarah (Linheart) McCune, who are natives of Pennsylvania. Their daughter was born near Rochelle, Ogle Co., Ill., June 14, 1856. There have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Brace two children, who bear the names Maud E. and Harry.
The father of our subject was one of the early pioneers of Stephenson County, and took great pride in watching its rapid development, and was second to none in his anxiety and efforts to that end. He settled there while yet unmarried in the year 1842, and at the age of nineteen years. His home previous to this settlement had been in Madison County N. Y., where he had lived for several years. He was married in Stephenson County, and resided in Silver Creek and Ridott Townships until he removed to this State.
On all matters of political interest our subject is inclined to take his stand with the Republican party, but never at the expense of principle. He is a friend to good morals, and anxious to do all in his power as a citizen to forward the highest interests of the Republic.
HOMAS BARRY is an extensive and prosperous farmer of Gage County, owning and managing a fine large farm which is classed as one of the best in Paddock Township. Mr. Barry is a native of Ireland, and thence he emigrated to the United States in the year 1850, landing in New York City March 1, friendless, homeless and penniless. Notwithstanding these discouraging facts he was not disheartened, but immediately sought work, anything that his hands might find to do, that he might earn an honorable living and not be dependent on strangers for what he ate. He soon found employment as a porter in Barker's hotel, and thus engaged for three years. At length he left the great metropolis of the Empire State and went to Philadelphia, where he hoped to obtain more lucrative employment. He staid there but a few weeks, however, and then proceeded to Cleveland, Ohio, where he passed the ensuing three years. From there he then went to St. Louis, and spent a like period of time in that city. We subsequently find him located in Pike County, Ill., where he began farming on his own account, he having been often employed as a farm hand since his arrival in the United States. He rented a farm
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