Topography and General Features | Early History | Criminal Matters|
The Grasshopper Raid | Organization | Other County Affairs
Elections | Progress of the County
Fairmont: Early History | Churches and Schools | Societies|
Business Interests | The Press | Biographical Sketches
Geneva: Early History | Present Condition of the Town|
Grafton: Biographical Sketches|
Fillmore City | Manleyville | Exeter
Biographical Sketches: Hamilton Precinct | Bryant Precinct
Bell Prairie Precinct | Momence Precinct
This is the largest town in Fillmore County, and has a population of about eight hundred. Its location is on the level, upland prairie, on the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad. It is about four miles from the north line of the county, and about midway across the county from east to west. When the town site was selected, it was a naked and unbroken prairie, but now it is finely ornamented with a large growth of forest and shade trees, which gives the residence portion of the town the appearance of having been built in the midst of one large grove. Though containing no very large and magnificent buildings, the business houses and residences are all neat in design, and remind the visitor of the pleasant villages of New England.
Surrounded as it is by a fertile and well-settled country, Fairmont is a business town of considerable importance. The business and professional interests of the town are represented by two grain elevators, one with a capacity for 20,000 bushels, and the other 15,000, two lumber yards, eight grocery stores, three general stores, one dry goods store, two hardware, three drug, one boot and shoe, one furniture, one jewelry, one millinery and furnishing store, a number of dress makers, two harness shops, two meat markets, four agricultural implement warehouses, three newspaper offices, two banks, three hotels, two restaurants, two bakeries, two livery stables, two blacksmith shops, two carpenter shops, one cheese factory, one flouring-mill, one wagon and implement manufactory, one marble works, three coal yards, two saloons, a number of real estate and loan agencies, tailor shop, barber shops, etc., four physicians, eight lawyers, one photographer, three editors, four ministers, and five school teachers.
The town as originally surveyed in October, 1871, comprised the northeast quarter and 460 feet of the northwest quarter of Section 30, Town 8, Range 3 west, in all comprising 188 67/100 acres. The history of the town may be said to have commenced about six months before this, when the site was selected by the Railroad Town Company, and, being on Government land, four men were employed to enter the entire section by pre-emption claim. As the law required a six months' residence, these men built a little house on the center of the section, which they occupied until they could prove up, which they then did and deeded the land to the town company.
As soon as surveyed, the sale of town lots commenced, and in a short time a number were sold, and some buildings erected.
After the small house occupied by the original claimants of the land, the next building was the store of J. E. Porter, which he removed from Fillmore City, arriving at Fairmont and beginning business October 15, 1871.
Before the town was surveyed, there was a post office on the farm of M. H. Brown, adjoining the town site. The post office was called Hesperia, and M. H. Brown was Postmaster; but soon after the town site was surveyed, it was removed thereto, and its name changed to Fairmont.
During the fall of 1871, several buildings were erected. Building was kept up during the winter, and by May 1, 1872, there were altogether about forty buildings in the new town.
The first sermon was preached in the fall of 1871, at the new railroad depot, by Rev. G. W. Gue. Late the same year, the building of the Methodist Episcopal Church was commenced. This was the first church edifice in the county. J. W. Stewart was pastor.
The first newspaper, called the Fairmont Bulletin, was established early in May, 1872, by Will R. Gaylord.
The first death occurred in the summer of 1872, and it was that of a young child of Mr. and Mrs. William Chapin.
The first school was taught in the summer of 1872, by Miss Elvie Lewis, now Mrs. Dan Phillips, in a small frame building rented for school purposes.
The first marriage took place in the fall of 1872, and was that of Clarence C. Chapin and Miss Morgan.
The early history of Fairmont is marked by no remarkable events other than its wonderful progress. In the spring of 1873, the town had attained such size that it was determined to become incorporated as a village, which was accomplished May 26, 1873, and A. S. Shepard, H. L. Edwards, W. C. Zeigler, J. E. Porter and B F. Parliman were appointed Trustees.
Among the first acts of the new village board was to secure the laying-out of a park adjoining the town site. The town company donated the land, and a fine park, comprising a little over seven acres, was laid out, and, in due time, was planted to trees. This park has ever since been the pride of the village, and has received careful attention. The result is that at this date the trees have attained sufficient size to afford good shade, and the ground having been sown to orchard grass, the park presents a very attractive appearance.
In 1873, the schoolhouse was built, and was 24x48 feet in dimensions, with two wings each 10x24 feet, and the entire building two stories high. The schoolhouse grounds comprise an entire block, which was donated by the town company. This was planted to trees.
Fairmont continued to improve very fast until the summer of 1874, when the grasshoppers ruined the crops throughout the county tributary to it, when a dull period followed for about two years.
In the fall of 1876, business again revived. The crops had been good, and this town was the market for a large scope of well-settled country. To the south it commanded a trade for several miles, while from the north farmers hauled their crops from the northern part of York County, and the business done in Fairmont was great. This great prosperity continued during the year 1877, but since that time other towns have increased their business facilities, and Fairmont no longer draws a trade from so large a territory as formerly. There is, however, a large and well-settled country naturally tributary to it, whence a good support is derived and the business of the town may be said to be in a prosperous condition.
In the winter of 1878-79, the town was visited by a big fire which burned several buildings, and, for a time, threatened to sweep away the entire town, and it was with only the greatest difficulty that this was prevented. The fire was supposed to have been of incendiary origin, and T. J. Wells was arrested and brought to trial on a charge of arson, but, after a long and exciting trial, he was acquitted.
The church societies of Fairmont are the Methodist, Presbyterian, Congregational, Catholic and Episcopal. The three first named have church buildings. The Methodist Episcopal Church was built in the fall of 1871; the Presbyterian in 1873, from lumber donated for the purpose by the Third Presbyterian Church of Chicago, and the Congregational Church built in 1881. The two last named are large and comfortable buildings. The citizens of Fairmont are of an exceptionally religious character and contribute liberally to the support of the church organizations.
The schools are in a prosperous condition. To the large schoolhouse erected in 1873, an addition has been built, 24x32 feet in size, and two stories high. The school is well graded, and is divided into five departments Great care is taken to secure good instructors, and the pupils in attendance make rapid progress.
Fairmont Lodge, No. 48. A., F. & A. M., was organized in 1874. It is now in a prosperous condition, and numbers about forty members.
Hesperian Lodge, No. 42, I. O. O. F., was organized in 1874. It is in a prosperous condition, and has over fifty members.
Stacy Encampment, No. 11, I. O. O. F., has a good working organization, and holds meetings the first and third Thursdays of each month.
Fillmore Lodge, No. 213, Knights of Honor, were organized March 10, 1879, with nineteen members. It now has thirty-nine members, and is in a flourishing condition.
E. A. U. Lodge, No. 218, is an insurance association, organized to secure a union in operations, and is prosperous. It was organized in January, 1881
The Women's Mutual Improvement Club, is an organization having as its object the intellectual and social advancement of its members. It was organized in the fall of 1879, and is in a prosperous condition. Much energy and ability is displayed, and the society is doing an immense good in advancing the social and mental culture of the ladies of Fairmont.
A woman's suffrage association was organized in 1881, and has a large membership. A great deal of ability is displayed by its members, and its meetings attract considerable attention.
The Women's Christian Temperance Union has a large and working organization. The members are working hard in their chosen labor. The society was organized in 1881.
There are two banking institutions in Fairmont. Charles S. Miller & Co. began business early in 1882, as successors to the banking house of E. B. Branch & Co., which was established in 1875.
The Fillmore County Bank was first organized January 1, 1878, by J. O. Chase. On the 1st of April, 1880, it was incorporated with a paid-up capital of $20 000. J. O. Chase is President, and Irwin B. Chase, Cashier.
The Fairmont Steam Flouring Mill was built in 1878, by Welch & Wiley. An excellent quality of flour is made. To secure the location of this mill, the citizens of Fairmont donated to the proprietors a bonus of $1,000. This money was raised by subscription. The most of this was finally paid by J. E. Porter, R. H. Pinney and A. S. Shepard, who guaranteed the payment of the subscription.
The Fairmont Dairy Association was organized, and began operations for the manufacture of cheese on February 1, 1882. About 80,000 pounds of cheese are made each month.
The Fairmont wagon shops, C. Beecher, proprietor, besides the manufacture of wagons and carriages, make corn planters and cultivators.
The Fairmont Bulletin was established May 1, 1872, by Will R. Gaylord. It is now owned by E. C. Sawyer. L. T. Calkins is editor and manager. The Bulletin is a seven-column paper, folio, and is Republican in politics. It has a large circulation.
L. T. Calkins, the managing editor of the Bulletin, was born in Barnerville, N. Y., August 2, 1852. He attended school in Troy and Franklin during his boyhood days. In 1870, he removed to Burlington, Iowa. From there he went to Keokuk, Iowa, where he was engaged as principal of one of the ward schools for nearly three years. He then attended the Northwestern University at Evanston, Ill., until 1874, when he returned to Burlington, and began work on the Daily Hawkeye. He was engaged first in the business office and then on the editorial staff. In 1878, he left the Hawkeye and removed to Fairmont, Neb. Here he purchased the Bulletin, which he edited until July 1, 1881, when he sold out to E. C. Sawyer, and then purchased the Lincoln Daily Globe, which he published until the next December, when he again returned to Fairmont and took charge of the Bulletin as managing editor. In 1879, he was appointed Postmaster at Fairmont, which position he resigned in the spring of 1882. He was married at Burlington, Iowa, February 16, 1877.
The Nebraska Signal is a weekly newspaper, published by Dr. J. B. Brazelton. It was established October 27, 1881. It is a six-column paper, anti-monopoly Republican in politics.
J. B. Brazelton was born November 24, 1827, in Jefferson County, Ind. Moved to Greensburg, at the age of thirteen. Attended school there three years, receiving an academic education, when he went to Cincinnati, and worked in the Ben Franklin Book and Job Printing Office three years. Then moved to Louisville and worked in the Courier office two years. He then returned to Greensburg and began the study of medicine. He graduated and practiced there until the fall of 1871, when he located at Peru, Neb., where he engaged in the practice of his profession until April 28, 1874, when he located at Fairmont. He retired from practice in October, 1881, and began the publication of the Signal.
Literary Notes is a paper devoted to literary and educational purposes, and shows great ability on the part of its editor, L. B. Fifield. The paper was established at Kearney in February, 1878, and removed to Fairmont in October, 1881. The Notes issues semi-monthly, and has a good circulation throughout the State.
F. M. ANDERSON, Fairmont, was born in Morris, Fillmore Co., Ill., in 1857, where he lived for eighteen years; removing to Nebraska and settling in Fairmont in 1878, where he engaged in mercantile business under the firm name of Ruffner & Anderson, and in 1881 merging into the sole proprietorship. He attended Bryant & Stratton's business college in Davenport, Iowa, in 1877. He is a member of the A., F. & A. M. and I. O. O. F. He was married in 1881, in Fairmont to Miss Finnigan.
JOHN BARSBY, attorney at law, Fairmont, was born in Leicester, England, in 1843. Fifteen years later, he moved to Winnebago County, Ill., where he remained until 1861, when he enlisted in the Sixth Missouri Infantry, serving twenty-one months, when he was shot through the right shoulder at the battle of Arkansas Post, January 11, 1863, and was discharged; re-entered the service in the fall of 1864, as Second Lieutenant of Company B, One Hundred and Forty-sixth Illinois Infantry, serving until the close of the war, being mustered out in July, 1865. He was one of the guards of honor over President Lincoln's remains in Springfield capitol; then went on the stage as a vocalist. He removed to Nebraska in 1868, settling in Seward County, where he followed farming for four years, when he moved to Fairmont and followed the music business and kept a restaurant. In 1876, he was elected Justice of the Peace, and served four years, at the same time studying law, being admitted to the bar in 1878, and has followed that profession since. He was married in 1867, in Whiteside County, Ill., to Kate E. Cummins, daughter of Judge Cummins, now of York, Neb. They have three boys living--Macvicar W. S., Harry H. and Edward Centennial. Two girls deceased. He is a member of the Blue Lodge of A., F. & A. M., K. of H., and Past Commander of the G. A. R.
CHARLES BEECHER, Fairmont, was born in Washington County, N. Y., in 1824, where his parents remained two and a half years, going from there to Genesee County, where he lived for five years; returning to Washington County, where he remained for five years, thence to Rutland County, Vt., where he remained ten years, farming; from there he went to Kendall and Winnebago Counties, Ill.; lived in latter county twenty-five years, where he remained until 1874, engaged in wagon-making and machine work; then removed to Fairmont, engaging in farming for one year, and then built a grain elevator, which he soon after sold. He then went into carriage and wagon making and general repair shop. He was married in Vermont in 1848, to Louisa Wills. They have one son--Henry I. Mr. Charles Beecher is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the Equitable Aid Union. He was a member of the Town Board for four years.
HENRY BEECHER, Fairmont, was born in Kendall County, Ill., in 1852, living in that State twenty years, when he moved to Fairmont, Neb , engaging in farming three and a half miles from town until 1876, when he followed wagon-making for a short time, after which he spent four or five months in Arkansas, but upon returning, he engaged in the hardware business in July, 1881, under the firm name of Beecher, Clark & Co., which business is still carried on. He was married in December, 1873, in Illinois, to Ella Prescott, who died in December, 1878, leaving one child.
W. J. CLARK was born in Newcastle, Penn., in 1847, living there six years, when he moved to Claridon, Ohio, where he remained ten years, and thence going to Plano, Ill., where he was engaged in the hardware trade, remaining there twelve years. In 1878, he removed to Fairmont, and engaged as clerk in the hardware business until July, 1881, when he entered business in the firm of Beecher, Clark & Co. He was married in 1868, in Plano, Ill., to Jennie Green. They have three children, all living. He is a member of Equitable Aid Union.
W. I. CARSON, Fairmont, was born in Mahoning County, Ohio, in 1840, where he lived until 1851, when he went to Williams County, where he lived until 1859, when he went to Steuben County, Ind., where he lived until 1861, farming. In August of that year, he enlisted in the Forty-ninth Illinois Infantry, Company I, serving until January 10, 1866. He then returned to Steuben County, Ind., where he lived until 1872, following farming, when he removed to Fillmore County, Neb., taking a homestead four miles from Fairmont, where he farmed four years. He then went into the livery business in Fairmont, under the firm name of Carson & Van Slyke, now Carson & Howard. He was two years in the City Council. He was married in 1866, in Steuben County, Ind., to Catharine Van Slyke. They have three children. He is a member of the I. O. O. F. and K. of H.
J. O. CHASE, banker, Fairmont, was born in Vermont in 1851. When fourteen years old, he removed to Waterford, Wis., remaining there five years, and removed to Lincoln, Neb. In 1871, worked for dairyman, and afterward read law, being admitted to the bar in February, 1872. In the latter year, he removed to Fairmont and engaged in the practice of law until 1878. He was admitted to practice before the State Supreme Court, in July, 1875. In January, 1878, he engaged in the banking business as President of the Fillmore County Bank. He was formerly a member of the firm of Chase Bros. & Sawyer, bankers, at Riverton. He was married in 1874, in Burlington, Wis., to Hattie E. Sturge. He is a member of the Blue Lodge, A., F . & A. M., I. O. O. F. and K. of H. He was formerly a member of the City Council, and is at present a Notary Public; member of the House of Representatives of the State Legislature in 1877.
JOHN F. COULTER, Fairmont, was born in Cass County, Mich., in 1840, where he lived for thirty-three years, following farming and stock-raising, and teaching twelve winters. In 1874, he removed to Fairmont, Neb.; buying a farm five miles southwest of the town, which he has occupied since. He taught school for three winters in Nebraska. In the fall of 1870, he was elected to the Michigan House of Representatives. In 1878, he was elected as Senator from the Twenty-third Senatorial District to the Nebraska State Legislature, serving for two years; Justice of the Peace for four years. He was married in 1864, in Cass County, Mich., to Sarah N. Vary. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and of the T. of H., and was Director of Cass County Agricultural Society for ten years, and President of same one year, also President of that of Fillmore County, Neb., two years.
F. CURTISS, loan agent, Fairmont, was born in Oneida County, N. Y., in 1824, but when a small boy his parents removed to Cazenovia, N. Y., where they lived until he was twelve years of age, when they removed to Onondaga County, and remained three years, going from there to Kenosha County, Wis., where he remained until twenty-four years of age, or until 1853, when for ten years he followed the ministry as a pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church. After that he settled in Evanston, Ill., where he took a Biblical course, graduating in 1865. He entered the Rock River Methodist Episcopal Conference, being stationed for one year in Wyanet, one year at Elizabeth, three years at Lena, one year at Sandwich, and two years at Plano His wife's health failing, in 1874-75-76 he was employed by the Burlington & Missouri Railroad Land Department, running land-seeker's excursions in this State. He removed to Fairmont in 1875. In 1877, he was General Ticket Agent of the Missouri, Kansas & Topeka Railroad for land department; returning to Fairmont in 1878; being pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church at Crete during that year, after which he returned to Fairmont, settling on his farm two miles from town, at the same time following the business of money loaning for New York capitalists, which he still follows. He was married in 1853, in Bristol, Wis., to Emily M. Pike. They have six children living, and four deceased. He is a member of the A., F. & A. M. and formerly of all temperance societies. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church until two years ago, when he was transferred to the United Brethren Church, Exeter Mission, as pastor.
J. A. EDNEY, Fairmont, was born in Dearborn Co., Ind., in 1849, where he lived until fifteen years old, when he removed to Lyons, Iowa, where he remained for nine years, following the hardware and tinner's trade; from there he removed, in 1874, to Exeter, Neb., where he engaged in the hardware and implement business, which he followed until December, 1880, when he sold out and established agricultural implement and carriage warehouse in Fairmont, which is running at the present time. He was married in 1872, in Gloucester City, N. J., to Gertrude Howarth. They have one child living, and one deceased.
J. W. ELLER was born in Indiana in 1846. Lived there until 1871, when he removed to Fillmore County, settling in Fairmont upon the location of that place in the fall of the year, following the practice of law. Graduated from the law department of the Chicago University in 1870 with the degree of LL. B. Enlisted in 1863 in the Tenth Indiana Cavalry, Company I, serving until the close of the war, being mustered out in July, 1865. He has held the office of County Attorney, was District Attorney of the First Judicial District of Nebraska in 1876, Clerk of the House of Representatives in 1873, member of the Republican State Central Committee for two years, and a member of every State Republican Convention but one since locating in the State. He was married, in 1872, in Fillmore County, to Frances Hager. They have three children.
GEORGE W. FIFIELD was born in Dubuque, Iowa, in 1852, where he lived for three years, when he moved with his parents to Manchester, Iowa, remaining there four years, after which he removed to Cedar Falls, where he lived until 1870, when he removed to Fairmont and clerked in a general store for two years. Was elected Justice of the Peace for two years. Was admitted to the bar in 1876, and, in May, 1881, formed a copartnership with W. R. Gaylord. Married, in 1873, in Fairmont, to Susie E. Noble. He is a member of the Equitable Aid Union.
L. B. FIFIELD was born in Eastport, Me., in 1826, where he lived until 1830, when, with his parents, he moved to Nova Scotia, where he remained twelve years, thence going to Exeter, N. H., where for one year he attended Phillips Academy. In 1844, moved to Boston, where he followed printing and proof-reading five years, when he entered Kimball Union Academy at Meriden, N. H., where he remained until 1849, when he removed to Cambridge, Mass., where he entered the Riverside printing office. Entered Amherst College, Class of 1853. Removed to Dubuque, Iowa, where he edited the Daily Tribune. In 1856, entered the ministry, being located at Manchester, Iowa, until 1860; at Cedar Falls until 1870; at Lincoln, Neb., until 1872; at Kearney until 1877, when he gave up the ministry and began the publication of the Literary Notes at Kearney, which he moved to Fairmont in 1881. This publication is the official educational paper of the State. Was appointed Regent of the State University in January, 1876, and elected in the fall of the same year to the same position, and re-elected in the fall of 1881. Was Chaplain of the Constitutional Convention in 1871, and House of Representatives the same year; Trustee of Doane College at Crete three years, and Moderator of Kearney School three years. Married, in 1851, at Auburndale, Mass., to Miss Walworth. They have four children.
C. W. FORT was born in Fillmore, Mo., in 1854, where he lived only a short time, when he went to Mills County, Iowa, where he lived until 1859, when his folks removed to Nebraska City, Neb., where he lived two years, and afterward at other towns along the Missouri River. In 1871, entered State Normal School at Peru, graduating in 1876 in the degree of Normal Graduate, then followed teaching, and was, in 1878, appointed Principal of the Geneva Public Schools, which position he held for two years, until appointed Principal of Fairmont Public Schools, which position he now holds. Is a member of the E. A. U.
WILLIAM R. GAYLORD was born in Niles, Mich., in 1850. Lived there two years, when his parents moved to South Bend, Ind., where he remained nine years, then went back to Niles, where he stayed two years, returning to Indiana, where he lived for four years, from thence removing to Cleveland, Ohio, where after one year he removed to Cuyahoga Falls, and, after one year, returned to Indiana, where he remained until 1871, when he removed to Lincoln, Neb., and in the latter part of the same year to Fairmont, where he has remained since, following the practice of law, having been admitted to the Bar in 1875. He has been Chairman of the Republican County Central Committee, and a member of the State Committee. Was Justice of the Peace for two years, and from the organization of the town was Treasurer of the same for five or six successive years. He is a member of the A., F. & A. M. He was married, in 1875, in Fairmont, to Maggie Brazelton. They have two children. He is now a member of the firm of Gaylord & Fifield, who established and now have the only set of title abstracts of Fillmore County.
W. C. HENRY, auctioneer, was born in Aurelius, N. Y., in 1841, where he lived until nineteen years old, then enlisted in Company K, Nineteenth New York Infantry, being promoted to Quartermaster Sergeant and discharged June 3, 1863, then returned to New York, but shortly moved to St. Joseph County, Mich., where he followed auctioneering until 1870, when he moved to Ashland, Neb., in the employ of the Burlington & Missouri Railroad until the following year, when he removed to Fairmont in the employ of the same company for two years, then engaged in the hotel business, which he followed for five years, when he went into auctioneering, which he follows to-day. He was married in February, 1864, in Sturges, Mich., to Julia F. Briggs. They have three children. He is a member of the K. of H., and has been a member of the School Board six years, and is now President. He was Chairman of the Fairmont City Council four years and County Commissioner for three years.
J. D. HOFFMAN was born in Nova Scotia in 1856, where he remained only a year, his people emigrating to Michigan, settling at Greenville, where he remained until 1873 attending school. In the latter portion of that time went through Ann Arbor College, graduating in 1872 with the degree of LL. B. In 1873, removed to Fond du Lac, Wis., where he was employed in the jobbing department of the Daily Commonwealth, remaining there until 1875, when he removed to Edgerton, Wis., taking a position on the Wisconsin Tobacco Reporter, where he remained until the spring of 1878, when he removed to Friendville, Neb., buying the Telegraph at that place, which he sold in the spring of 1880, and journeyed to the mountains of Colorado, but returned the same year to Lincoln, Neb., where for a year he was city editor for the State Democrat. In October, 1881, he took the editorial charge of the Fairmont Bulletin. He is a member of the I. O. O. F.
JAMES JACOBUS was born in Franklin County, Ind., in 1843, where he lived until twelve years old, when he moved to Winona County, Minn., where he lived until 1867, following the business of wagon and carriage manufacturing. Removed to Dodge County, Minn., in the spring of 1867. Was Deputy Sheriff of Dodge County for four years, removing to Fairmont in 1878, engaging in the machine shops for a year, and then in the Marsh Harvester Company, where he is at present. In August, 1862, he enlisted in the Tenth Minnesota Infantry, serving until the close of the war, being mustered out in August, 1865. He was transferred to the regimental band in 1864. He was married in the spring of 1867, in Winona, Minn., to Miss Ellen B. Pope. They have one girl living and two deceased. He is a member of the Blue Lodge, A., F. & A. M., G. A. R., and Masonic Relief Society of St. Paul, Minn. Was Constable of Fillmore County for one year.
J. D. JENKINS was born in Worcestershire, Eng., in 1846, where he lived until eighteen years old, when he moved to the British New Zealand colonies in the Government employ in the mines and in mining. Was also under Gen. Cameron in the Maori campaign on colonial forces, then returned to mining on the west coast of New Zealand, being one of the first prospectors in that district. In 1872, emigrated to Lincoln, Neb., and shortly afterward settled in Seward, where he lived for three or four years speculating, and then in 1876 to Fairmont, having already a farm on the Blue Valley, in York County. In 1874, went to California and Oregon, but, ascertaining that Nebraska had more natural advantages, returned. In 1879, was elected as Representative from Fillmore County to the State Legislature, serving for two years. He was married in 1880 in Fairmont. He is a member of the Romish Church. Received a primary education at Danby, Sedgley Park, Staffordshire, afterward at Radcliffe College, Leicestershire (Jesuit), and then to St. Gregory's College, Downside, Somersetshire, the oldest Benedictine scholastic institution in England.
G. W. JOHNSTON, M. D., was born in Parisburg, Va., in 1851. He was educated at Henry College, Emory, Va.; lived in that State until 1873, when he removed to Fairmont, Neb., and engaged in practice of medicine until 1876, when he removed to California, stopping at Marysville and Nicholas for about one year, when he returned to Fairmont and resumed his practice, which he has followed since, being the first permanent physician in Fillmore County. He graduated from Bellevue Hospital Medical College, New York City, in 1872, with the degree of M. D. He was married in 1880, in Fairmont, to Miss McKelvy. He is a member of the I. O. O. F., and of the Knights of Honor.
E. L. MARTIN was born in Allegany County, N. Y., in 1829, where he lived until sixteen years old; then went to Dodge County, Wis., where he lived for twenty-five years engaged in a looking-glass factory and peddling. Then removed to Fillmore County, in 1869. In the spring of 1871, he opened the business which he has since continued, that of dealer in grain, coal, live stock and farm implements. Mr. Martin is well and favorably known, and his extensive acquaintance throughout Fillmore County and vicinity, enables him to do a large business. He was elected County Commissioner for two years, and helped to organize Fillmore County. He held the office of the first Postmaster of the county, and on the Town Board of Fairmont one term. Was married in 1840, in Dodge County, Wis. They have six children, five living and one deceased. Is a member of the I. O. O. F. and E. A. U.
JOHN P. MAULE, attorney at law, was born in Pennsville, Ohio, September 15, 1853, where he remained until 1870, when he moved to Milford, Seward Co., Neb., where he taught school in Seward and York Counties, removing, in 1874, to Fairmont, where he commenced the practice of law, being admitted to the bar early in that year. He was elected District Attorney of the First Judicial District, comprising the counties of Richardson, Johnson, Pawnee, Gage, Saline, Fillmore, Jefferson, Thayer, Clay and Nuckolls in 1876, and re-elected in 1878, serving until January, 1881. He was married in Lincoln, Neb., to Mary K. Finnigan. They have two children--Fannie and Florence.
S. H. OLDHAM, was born in Decatur County, Ind., in 1848, where he lived until fifteen years old, when he entered the United States service, serving as a soldier about fifteen months, when he moved to Kankakee County, Ill., in 1865, living there until 1874, teaching, when he moved to Fairmont and engaged in 1875 in the grocery trade, selling out the following year, engaging in mercantile business since. Enlisted in 1864, in the Eighty-seventh Indiana Volunteer Infantry, being mustered out in August, 1865. He was President at one time of the City Council. He was married in Illinois, in 1881, to Miss Ruth C. Calkin. He is a member of the M. E. Church, and of the Blue Lodge, A., F. & A. M.
R. H. PINNEY was born in Steuben County, N. Y., in 1847, where he lived twelve years, when he moved to New Jersey, living in Middlesex and Monmouth Counties three years; thence to Philadelphia, and from there to Cincinnati, where he remained three years, after which he removed to Jacksonville, Ill., in the mercantile business until the spring of 1870, when he emigrated to Nebraska, settling in Lincoln, following for the most part clerking in a hotel until October, 1871, when he moved to Fairmont, putting up the first store and opened the first stock of groceries, boots and shoes. He has followed since the implement trade, and was the first Postmaster in the town. For the last two years, he has also dealt largely in live stock, and followed the business of insurance and collections, and was appointed Justice of the Peace in April, 1882. He was married in 1871, in Lincoln, to Miss Rosa Ballard, of Greene County, Ohio. They have three children living--William H., Frank V. and an infant daughter--and two deceased. He is a member of the K. of H., I. O. G. T., and the M. E. Church.
J. E. PORTER was born in the town of Waterbury, Conn., in 1824, where he lived until 1840, when he moved to Binghamton, N. Y., where he followed the harness trade, remaining there until 1845, when he went to New Haven, Conn., where he remained a year; then to Cortland County, N. Y., remaining two years in the harness trade, returning again to Binghamton, where he remained until 1852. In the spring of that year, he went to the mining region of California, where he remained for two years, and then for three years following lived in Oneida County, N. Y., where he followed farming. In 1857, he moved to Madison, Wis., engaged in mercantile business until the spring of 1861, when he moved to Wabasha County, Minn., engaged in farming and milling business until 1870, when he moved to Nebraska, where he spent the winter in Lincoln removing to Fillmore, Fillmore County, in the following spring, opening a general merchandise store at that place (post office of Fillmore, ten miles from Fairmont on the West Blue River), It was the first post office, as well as the first store in that county. In the fall of that year, 1871, Fairmont was laid out, and he removed to the town site in November, building the first store in Fairmont, and opening up a stock of general merchandise, which business he is following to-day. Was Deputy Postmaster of Fillmore for the salary of $16 a year. He was the first Mayor of Fairmont, and has been a member of the City Council for four years. He was married in 1849, in Cortland County, N. Y., to Mary F. Ambler. They have two children--S. J. and Nellie E.--living, and Laura A. and Edward J., deceased. He is a member of the Congregational Church. He is President of the Equitable Aid Union.
CLARK ROBINSON was born in Scott County, Ill., in April, 1843, where he lived until eighteen years old, when he enlisted in August, 1862, in the One Hundred and Twenty-ninth Illinois Infantry, serving until the close of the war, being mustered out July 20, 1865, then returned to Scott County, Ill., where he lived until the spring of 1872, when he moved to Fillmore County, and followed farming for four years. Then he moved to Fairmont, and engaged in shipping horses, stock, and kept a meat market until 1878, when he went into the agricultural implement business in the firm of Gorham, Treadwell & Co. In the fall of 1879, went out of that business, and fed cattle in the following November, when he was appointed Deputy Sheriff of the county, and served until the present time. On the Town Board for two or three years. He was married, in 1867, in Scott County, Ill, to Kate Edwards. They have four boys. He is a member of the G. A. R.
J. H. RUSHTON, attorney, was born in England, removing to America with his parents in 1851, settling in Kendall County, Ill., where he remained until 1878, following farming until 1869, when he attended the Jennings Seminary at Aurora for four years, graduating in the classical course. Was Principal of Schools in Plano, Ill., for six years, studying law during that time, being admitted to the bar in Chicago in the Appellate Court of First District of Illinois, in March, 1880, which examination was certified to the Supreme Court of that State, and admission to practice granted. Went to Aurora in 1879, entering the law office of Hon. A. C. Little, and, after nine months, formed a co-partnership with him. In July, 1881, removed to Fairmont, practicing law under the co-partnership of Rushton & Lincoln. He was married, in 1875, in Lisbon, Ill., to Minnie J. Putt. They have one child, five years old. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
E. C. SAWYER was born in Plymouth, Vt., in 1854, where he resided until about twenty-one years of age, following farming, at which time he entered the drug trade at Ludlow, Vt., where he remained for three years, and then removed to Nebraska, settling in Fairmont, and entered the drug trade and book-selling, which he has followed ever since. In 1880, he engaged in the banking business at Riverton, Neb., under the firm name of Chase Brothers & Sawyer, with Eugene Steer as resident Manager. In July, 1881, was appointed Deputy Postmaster, holding the same until April, 1882. In July, 1881, purchased from L. T. Calkins the Fairmont Bulletin, which property he has at this time. He is a member of the Blue Lodge, No. 48, A., F. & A. M., and Hesperian Lodge, No. 42, I. O. O. F.
W. T. STROTHER was born in Licking County, Ohio, in 1839, where he lived only a short time, when he went to Hancock County, where he lived until twenty-one years old. April 19, 1861, he enlisted in the Fourteenth Ohio Regiment, serving for three months; re-enlisted August 26, 1861, in the Twenty first Ohio Infantry, serving until the close of the war. Discharged July 25, 1865, promoted to Sergeant. In November, 1865, removed to Columbus, Neb., taking a homestead, where he lived for seven years. In January, 1873, removed to Fairmont, and purchased the Bulletin newspaper, which was run until March, 1878, when he sold out to L. C. Calkins. Sickness prevented him from engaging in business until the fall of 1880, at which time he engaged in the grocery business, and followed the same for two years. In the fall of 1881, went into the dairy business, and the manufacture of cheese, etc. He was married, in November, 1867, in Platte County, Neb., to Miss A. E. Gerrard. They have three children. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church.
V. A. STUART was born in Scott County, Ill., in 1845, where he lived until 1871, engaged in farming, and for three years in the grain and lumber business in Manchester; then removed to Fillmore County, taking a homestead, and followed grain business from 1875 to 1881. Enlisted in September, 1862, in the One Hundred and Twenty-ninth Illinois Infantry; but, after serving seven months, was discharged on account of disability. He was Assessor of Fairmont Precinct for three years. Was appointed Postmaster of Fairmont in November, 1882. He is a member of the Blue Lodge, A., F. & A. M. He was married, in February, 1868, in Illinois, to Lydia Swallow. They have six children.