being one of the richest and most
productive, and he has had opportunities to sell it at
a large figure, but has steadily refused all offers.
This is his home and here he has passed through many
troublous times and many equally pleasant ones. During
the grasshopper raid, when many faint-hearted people
were discouraged and left the country, Mr. Samson
remained and got along all right, his greatest trouble
having been to obtain sufficient help, that having
been scarce, even though the wages he offered was $2 a
day. With wheat at fifty cents a bushel that
remuneration was sufficient to keep every family from
want in spite of the depredations of the
Mr. Samson has a good general
knowledge of the early pioneer history of this State,
and relates many interesting things concerning it.
Although the settlement of Nebraska was conducted
quietly, without the sanguinary conflicts that
disturbed the colonization of Kansas at the same time,
yet there were seasons of great excitement connected
with the troublesome question of slavery. An
"underground railway" for the use of escaping slaves
passed through this precinct, running from Missouri to
Canada, with the station at the house of Charles
Giddings, Presiding Elder of the Methodist Church. He
assisted many slaves from one station to another, and
one lot was very nearly captured in this precinct. Mr.
Samson is a man of probity, truth and honor, and has
to the fullest extent the confidence of his
fellow-citizens. In politics he is a stanch
Republican, and cast his first Presidential vote for
John C. Fremont.
The marriage of our subject with
Miss Emeline M. Woodard (sic) was solemnized April 2,
1856. She was born in Wayne County, Pa., Nov. 26,
1838, and lived there, a member of the parental
household, until her marriage. Her grandfather, John
Woodward, was a descendant of the Puritans, born in
Connecticut, moving from there to Pennsylvania, where
he spent his last years. Asher Woodward, her father,
was a native of the same county as herself, born in
1801, and carried on the business of a farmer in
Pennsylvania until eight years prior to his decease,
when he removed to Sandwich, Ill., where he died in
1860. He married Miss Matilda Kennedy, a native of Mt.
Pleasant, Pa., and to them were born ten children.
The union of our subject and his
wife has been blessed by the birth of ten children,
nine of whom are still living, the following being
their record: Emery R., born Jan. 15, 1857; Jessie,
Feb. 24, 1859; Myra A., Jan. 30, 1861; Eva A., Dec.
15, 1863; Willard W., March 6, 1865; Carrie L., June
11, 1868; May A., Oct. 26, 1871; Robert R., Aug. 20,
1874; Nellie G., April 16,1876; Clyde E., May 24,
1881. Robert died when an infant. Emery, who lives in
Kingman County, Kan., married Mollie Donahue, and they
have three children--Florence, Raymond and Shirley.
Jessie married H. Dwight Tinker, of Humboldt, and they
have three children--Eliza D., Cleora P. and Ralph.
Eva is the wife of George S. Griffin, of Weeping
Water, and they have two children--John and May.
MARGARET E. BLACKLAW, a diligent and accomplished
business woman, lives in Table Rock Precinct, where
she owns a valuable farm, lying mostly on section 34.
She is of Irish ancestry, born in New Ross, Lunenburg
County, Nova Scotia, April 15, 1838. Her father,
Thomas Quinlan, was born in Ireland, and lived there
until he attained manhood, when he emigrated to this
country. He subsequently married Miss Elizabeth Broom,
who bore him seven children, five of whom are yet
living, one son in Washington Territory, one son in
Missouri, and Mrs. Mary E. Harbison in Kansas; Thomas
Quinlan lives in Paradise, Nova Scotia, and our
subject. In 1856 Mr. Quinlan came with his family to
Nebraska, and locating on the Big Muddy, in Richardson
County, pre-empted 160 acres, on which he settled. He
lived but a few months afterward, however, his death
occurring in 1857. Mrs. Quinlan carried on the farm
with the assistance of her children, and continued its
improvement until her death, ten years later, when it
The subject of our sketch was
eighteen years of age when she came with her parents
to Richardson County, and after her father's death she