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destroyed the peace and Prosperity of the country, our subject hastened to offer his assistance, with that of thousands of other brave men, and enlisted in Company I, 11th Pennsylvania Infantry. He participated in the battles of Rappahannock Station, Thoroughfare Gap, Warrenton, Second Bull Run and others. In the second battle at Bull Run he was wounded in such a manner that he was unable to continue his service, and was consequently honorably discharged because of disability. After the war he went into the oil region of West Virginia, and for three years was superintendent of an extensive oil prospecting and speculating company. In the fall of 1867 he went to Saginaw, Mich., where he worked at the carpenter trade for one year, thence to Adams County, Ill., in the spring of 1869, and in 1870 he engaged in the mercantile business in Ursa, twelve miles north of Quincy.
In February, 1880, our subject came to Blue Springs, where he has since resided, and engaged in the lumber business until 1886, at which time he sold out his interest in the business, and retired from active life, having accumulated a competence which enables him to live in very comfortable circumstances. On the 17th of September, 1872, he was united in marriage with Miss Belle Turner, a daughter of Edwin and Ellen Turner, who are natives of Massachusetts. Mrs. Rumbaugh was born in Wayne County. Ill., on the 8th of September, 1845, and is an accomplished and intelligent lady, possessing a truly refined and womanly disposition, well qualified to grace her pleasant home and her prominent position in society. She is the mother of four children, named Alice L., Clarence (deceased), Winnie and Clyde, who have been the recipients of her kindest and most tender care.
Our subject bears the honor of having been elected the first Mayor of Blue Springs, in which capacity he served with much credit to himself and general satisfaction to the public. Previous to his election as Mayor he was a member of the Town Board for two years, and was the mover and instigator of many of the improvement. which have taken place in his city. Socially, he is a member in good standing of the Masonic fraternity, and his honorable war career entitles him to membership in the G. A. R., Rawlins Post No. 35. He and his wife are influential members of the Presbyterian Church, and are among the well-known society people, enjoying the esteem and friendship of a host of acquaintances.
AMES KERR, JR. One of the most beautiful and extensive stock farms of Filley Township is owned and operated by the subject of this sketch. The greater part of it lies on section 22, and is in grass, being entirely devoted to the raising of cattle and hogs. By a life of industry Mr. Kerr has accumulated a generous share of this world's goods, and his career has been that which has gained him the respect and confidence of his fellowmen.
Our subject is of substantial Scotch ancestry, his father, also James by name, having been born in the "land of the thistle." He emigrated to America in early life, settling first in the Dominion of Canada. Thence he emigrated to Ford County, Ill., where he still resides. He carried on stock farming quite extensively at one time, but is now living more retired from active labor. His wife, Mrs. Rebecca Kerr, the mother of our subject, like her husband a native of Scotland, died some years ago in Illinois. Their family consisted of ten children, five sons and five daughters, only five of whom are living: Elizabeth is married and lives in Pennsylvania; Mary is the wife of J. E. Bennett, also of the Keystone State; Margaret, Mrs. Knight, is a resident of Los Angeles, Cal.; Andrew is farming in this county.
James Kerr. Jr., was born in Upper Canada on the 29th of June, 1845, and there received his primary education. He left home at the age of fourteen years, and proceeding to New York State, remained about two years engaged in farming, and upon pushing further westward to Illinois, was similarly occupied another two years. In 1866 he migrated to Colorado, where he became interested as a stock dealer. He continued in that section of country until 1878. but during the last six years of his stay there was employed as the conductor of a mule train of forty-two wagons, which transported
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merchandise from Cheyenne to Sidney, Neb. These wagons usually carried about eleven carloads of freight, and occupied from thirty to sixty days in making the trip. Often the Indians were troublesome, and the train had to be guarded by an escort of twenty to eighty soldiers. Often also they were compelled to "corral," or form their wagons in a circle, placing their animals inside, and from the breastwork thus constructed hide themselves from or engage in warfare with their savage foe. Not infrequently some of his then were killed.
Mr. Kerr was the first man conducting a train of supplies to the Black Hills, and was renowned for his courage and daring. In this manner he traveled over a large portion of Utah, Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and Western Nebraska. The average value of a cargo thus transported was $50,000, a great responsibility, but Mr. Kerr proved equal to the task of conveying his goods without loss, and therefore was given a generous salary of $2,400 per year and expenses.
Mr. Kerr, in 1878, having accumulated a snug sum from his operations in the farther West, made his way to this county and prepared to establish a permanent home. He was married, on the 26th of February of that year, to Miss Carrie, daughter of Harvey and Rebecca Giddings, who were natives of Pennsylvania, but came to this State in 1874. Of this union there was born one child, a son, Ralph, who died Dec. 7, 1885. Mrs. Carrie Kerr departed this life April 22, 1882, at the age of twenty-four.
Our subject, in 1883, was the second time married, to Miss Jennie Giddings, a sister of his first wife. This lady was born in Warren County, Ill., April 9, 1860, and lived there with her parents until fourteen years of age. Mr. Kerr upon coming to Nebraska operated on rented land for a period of three years. In 1881 he purchased 320 acres on section 22, which was then but partly improved. He has completed its cultivation, put up fine buildings, including a $4,000 residence, and added the other appliances essential to the complete country estate. In 1885 he added 160 acres to his first purchase, this latter lying on section 27. He rents out 200 acres and his stock operations occupy the balance.
Each year Mr. Kerr seeks his old haunts in the Western country. In imagination he lives over again the wild scenes of his earlier days, his adventures with the savage tribes, who are becoming subjugated by the advance of civilization, and the perils which none but a brave man would have the courage to undertake. He meddles very little with political matters, but his sympathies are with the Republican party, and to it he gives his support.
There are in Gage County some splendid rural residences and well-improved farms. Foremost among the number is the place owned by Mr. Kerr. A view of it accompanies this brief sketch of the owner, one of the most enterprising and highly reel citizens of this county.
LEXANDER GRAHAM, who is connected with the real-estate office of I. N. McConnell, of Beatrice, was born near the town of Utica, Licking Co., Ohio, Aug. 25, 1845. He was the sixth in a family of eight children, seven sons and one daughter, the offspring of Henry and Piety (Larue) Graham, who were of French Huguenot and Scotch-Irish stock, the father a native of Ireland, and the mother born near Winchester, Va. David, one of the brothers of our subject, fell on the battle-field at Chickamauga, during the late war. Six of the other children are still living, and residing, one in Kansas, two in Nebraska, and three in Ohio.
The father of our subject was in early life a weaver, but afterward abandoned his trade and took up farming. He emigrated to America when a youth of seventeen years, and settled among the early pioneers of Licking County, Ohio. There he owned and operated a farm, and was married in 1832. Later in life he removed to Logan County, where he spent his last days, his death taking place at Bellefontaine, in 1857, when fifty-seven years of age, his birth having occurred in February, 1800. The mother died Dec. 4, 1864.
The boyhood and youth of our subject were spent under the parental roof, and he was a little lad of seven years when his parents removed from Licking to Logan County, Ohio. Within the confines of the latter he developed into manhood, and
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