School Statistics | Statistics of Property
Part 2: Osceola: The Press. | Schools. | Church History.
Secret Societies. | Biographical Sketches.
Part 3: Osceola: Biographical Sketches (cont.).
Part 4: Valley Precinct: Biographical Sketches.
Platte Precinct: Biographical Sketches.
Clear Creek Precinct.
Stromsburg Precinct: Churches.
Part 5: Canada Precinct: Biographical Sketch.
Hackberry Precinct.: Biographical Sketch.
Pleasant Home Precinct: Biographical Sketch.
List of Illustrations in Polk County Chapter
Valley Precinct, the old home of His Excellency, Gov. Albinus Nance, the present Governor of Nebraska, was settled in the spring of 1871, by B. H. Keller. Charles R. Clark, J. W. Sheldon, Levi Kelly and James Bell, arrived the same year, and among the early settlers who came in shortly after are, W. B. Daymude, James Harmon, William Stevens, D. C. Place, Andreas Horst, John Curran, Joseph Curran, Robert Curran, M. C. Stull, John Benson, Collen Beebe, Robert Beebe and Thomas Clark.
The first school district (No. 5), was organized in June, 1871; members of school board, James Bell (Director) James Harmon (Moderator) William Stevens (Treasurer).
First school was taught by James Bell.
Rev. L. F. Whitehead organized a class of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the winter of 1872-73, with a membership of seven. The first birth occurring in the precinct was a daughter to John Hartmann, in 1871, and the first death was a child of William Stevens, in 1873.
CHARLES R. CLARK, farmer, Section 2, Town 15, Range 3 west, P. O. Silver Creek, Merrick County, came to Nebraska, December 1, 1870, and took up his claim where he now lives. He was among the very first settlers of that precinct. April 16, 1871, he moved his family and settled on his claim. He was a soldier in the late war, enlisting in Logan County, Ill., February, 1863, in Company B, Thirty-second Illinois Volunteer Infantry, serving until the close of the war. He was one of the County Commissioners from the fall of 1872 to 1873, during which time the first court house was built in the county. He was born in Logan County, Ill., April 23, 1846. He was married in Illinois in 1868, to Miss Elizabeth Harding. They have one son--Albinus Florus.
ROBERT CURREN, farmer, Section 14, P. O. Osceola, came to Nebraska in the fall of 1871, and took up a homestead where he now resides with a surplus capital of just $11, but, with his indomitable energy and perseverance, he pulled through grasshopper pests, etc., etc., and gained the possession of one of the finest farms in Polk County, consisting of 400 acres well stocked and with comfortable buildings. Mr. Curren is a native of Ireland, being born April 9, 1842; emigrated to the United States in 1853, first settling in Ohio, where he followed various occupations till the breaking-out of the war; then enlisted in Company A, Forty-eighth Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and served nearly three years, and was taken prisoner at the siege of Vicksburg; was carried to Jackson, Miss., where he escaped the enemy, and was nine months in reaching the Union lines.
This precinct derives its name from the Platte River, which forms its northern boundary. In March, 1871, Capt. W. T. Dodge and P. C. iKing made the first settlement in the precinct, and, the following April, Guy Faustus and James Beebe took up homestead claims, and J. A. Powers, A. G. Sherwood, George W. Cadwell, Oliver Scott and others came in shortly after. Capt. Dodge built the first house erected in the precinct, on Section 2, Range 4 west.
School District No. 7 was organized in the fall of 1871, but the schoolhouse was not built until the summer of 1872. John P. Heald taught the first school, which numbered eight pupils.
The School Board consisted of the following gentlemen: John Lohr, Director; Guy Beebe, Moderator; and Oliver Scott, Treasurer.
The first post office in the precinct was established at Thornton, in August, 1874, J. N. Hurd was appointed Postmaster, which position he held until the office was discontinued in 1881.
Rev. Mr. Kennestan preached the first sermon in the precinct, at the residence of P. C. King, and the first church society organized was the United Brethren, in December, 1872, with Rev. Henry Spafford as pastor; membership, six.
In March, 1875, a class of the Methodist Episcopal Church, with seven members, was organized by Rev. E. J. Hancock, and attached to the Osceola Circuit.
In 1871, a Swedish Evangelical Lutheran society was organized, with a very few members, at "Swedes' Home," and, in 1872, Rev. L. P. Ahlquist accepted a call from the congregation, and labored here until 1877, at which time he removed to Saunders County, Neb. In the spring of 1880, Rev. J. E. Nordling was called, and arrived upon the field the following summer. He came directly from Augustana College and Seminary, Rock Island, Ill. He has labored earnestly and his work has been crowned with success, about one hundred and fifty members being received into the church. The church was built in 1874, a small frame structure, 32x24. Steps are now being taken for the erection of a new frame church, 60x40. This is the strongest organization in the county. With few exceptions, the Swedes are a religious people. They are brought up under the influence of religion from childhood, and accustomed to attend school and divine service, which usage they observe wherever they go.
The first birth occurring in the precinct was a son to W. T. and Paulina Dodge, November 18, 1871.
P. C. King entered the first land, in February, 1871--the northeast quarter of Section 2, Township 14, Range 4 west.
GUY BEEBE, farmer, Section 28, Town 15, Range 3 west, P. O. Silver Creek, Merrick County, came to Nebraska and settled on the place where he now lives, homesteading it from the Government April 12, 1871, and has the honor of being the first white settler in that precinct, also erecting the first house in the precinct, although others had entered some land within its limits. Mr. Beebe, at the time he made his settlement, was accompanied by two other brothers, who took up soldier claims on the same section as his. The subject of this sketch was a soldier in the late war, enlisting in Washington County, Ohio, in 1861, in Company F, Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and served until the close of the war, there also being four other brothers who served as soldiers in the war, and all lived to pass through without a scratch. Mr. Beebe was born in Athens County, Ohio, March 29, 1839; was married in 1860, in Ohio, to Miss Sarah Heald. They have seven children, three boys and four girls. Mr. B. was one of the first School Directors in his precinct.
CAPT. WILLIAM T. DODGE, farmer, Section 2, Town 14, Range 4 west, P. O. Clarks, Merrick County, came to Nebraska in December, 1870, and in March, 1871, located on the farm where he now lives, which he took up as a homestead from the Government, being one of the first settlers, and erecting the first frame house in Platte Precinct. He now owns 360 acres of land. He served on the first Board of Commissioners in Polk County, holding that office for three years. The subject of this sketch was born in Portland, Me., February 26, 1844, received his literary education at Yarmouth and Westbrook Academies of that State. April 22, 1861, he enlisted in Company E, First Maine Infantry, being the seventh man to enlist from that state. He served in the Tenth, Twenty-ninth and Sixteenth Maine Regiments during the war, until the close of the war, and during that time was promoted to Second Lieutenant, and at the close of the war was brevetted as First Lieutenant, and then to Captain for gallant and meritorious service during the rebellion. At the close of the war, February 26, 1866, he entered the regular army, being commissioned Second Lieutenant of the Seventh United States Infantry, quartered in Florida, and in July, 1866, was promoted to First Lieutenant of the same regiment, but was afterward transferred, in June, 1868, to the Twenty-first United States Infantry, quartered at Arizona, where he remained until 1870. He was one of the original members of the J. F. Reynolds Post, No. 26, of the G. A. R., and was the First Officer of the Day. He was married on July 31, 1867, at Oxford, Me., to Miss Pauline King. They have five children living and two deceased--Kate I., Frederick W. (who the first white child born in Platte Precinct, born November 18, 1871), Clara M., Walter E. and Mark K. Richard I., born May 8, 1868, In Oxford, Me., died March 2, 1878, and Florence W., born February 18, 1873, and died July 18, 1875.
PHILANDER C. KING, farmer, Section 2, P. O. Clarks, Merrick County, came to Nebraska in April, 1868, first locating at Omaha, where he engaged with the U. P. R. R. Co., and remained in their employ till the winter of 1869, when he returned East to the State of Maine. In May, 1870, he was married to Miss Mary Harpper; then returned to Omaha. Here he remained till February, 1871; thence removing to Polk County, and homesteaded the place where he now lives, and has the honor of being the first white settler in that Precinct. He served as Assessor of the precinct two terms; was elected a member of the Board of County Commissioners in the fall of 1880; was born April 21, 1845, in the State of Maine. Their family consists of two children--Lizzie P. and John H. Mr. King remembers the first election in 1871. There were but nine votes cast in what is now Pleasant Home and Platte Precincts, said election being held at the residence of James Beebe.
Clear Creek Precinct derives its name from a beautiful stream of the same name, running through its northern portion from west to east. George D. Grant has the honor of being the first settler, taking up railroad land. G. E. Bornum, Guy C. Bornum and Levi Kimball located shortly and took pre-emption claims.
District No. 4 was the first organized in the precinct, dating back to 1871. The schoolhouse was not built until the spring of 1872, at which time the first school was opened, with Miss Vandercoff as teacher, and fourteen pupils in attendance. At the organization, the following gentlemen were elected to serve on the School Board: John Morrow, Alexander Munro and John McPheeters.
The first post office was established in 1871, under the name of Redville, and David Redpath appointed Postmaster. It was discontinued in 1876. Conkling Post Office was established in July, 1879, and John Morrow appointed Postmaster, but was discontinued in December, 1881.
A class of the Methodist Episcopal Church was organized in January, 1882, by Rev. Mr. Alberry, and attached to the Bellwood Circuit.
Manufacturing.--The Clear Creek Mills were built by Messrs. Schopp & Schlade in 1878, and are furnished with three sets of buhrs and all late improvements for manufacturing fine grades of flour. The present proprietors are Messrs. Schapp & Kummer.
The first settler in the precinct was William H. Records, who made settlement upon Section 34, Township 13, Range 2, in the fall of 1869. In the spring of 1870, Thomas Records, B. F. Smith, M. P. Smith, A. P. Buckley, P. T. Buckley, J. C. Smith, A. Larson, made settlements, and, in 1871, they were followed by a large number, among whom may be mentioned M. F. Barber, Daniel Swalley, N. F. Peterson, Louis Oakland.
District No. 10 was the first school district organized in the precinct, in the winter of 1871-72. J. P. Smith was chosen Director; Thomas Records, Moderator, and W. A. Shoemaker, Treasurer. A frame schoolhouse was built in the summer of 1872, and the ensuing fall, school was opened with J. A. Palmer as teacher, and fifteen pupils enrolled. At this date, the district included a territory six miles long and four miles wide.
The first post office was established at Stromsburg in the winter of 1873, with J. C. Smith as Postmaster.
In the fall of 1873, Rev. Simon Barrows organized a Congregational Church Society at Pleasant Prairie, and still retains his pastorate. Rev. J. A. Larkin organized a class of the Methodist Episcopal Church at this point January 25, 1880.
Stromsburg was located and surveyed in June, 1872. The Stromsburg Town Company were the original owners of the site, which was selected by Louis Headstrom, acting under their instructions.
The first building erected in the town was the store of the Stromsburg Town Company in the fall of 1872 in which Messrs. Headstrom & Buckley opened the first stock of general merchandise, brought to the town in the winter of 1873-74.
The schoolhouse was the next building, erected in November, 1872, and the following spring Louis Headstrom completed his residence, which was the first dwelling erected.
D. C. Brannon built the second store, stocking it was drugs, and the third was the store of John Dale, inaugurated in the fall of 1877, and is the pioneer hardware house. Stromsburg is beautifully located in the heart of the Blue River Valley, six miles to the southeast of the county seat, at the present terminus of the Omaha & Republican Valley Branch of the Union Pacific Railway. Its source of natural strength is a surrounding country of upland and rolling prairie of picturesque beauty and inexhaustible soil. It is situated on an elevated plain, commanding a view of pretty suburban farms and groves, tasteful lawns and cozy cottages. Its columns of planted forest trees are fast turning its streets into avenues, and its public park is ornamented with young but thrifty trees of beautiful foliage, while the crystal waters of the Blue River gracefully glide by on the right, fringed by shady groves, the handiwork of nature, together forming as pleasing a picture as one may often see.
Stromsburg is certainly beautifully laid out, and that a future of brightest hue is in store there is every reason to believe.
The present population is about two hundred, and the inhabitants exhibit a commendable spirit of energy and enterprise, and evidences of social refinement are noticeable on every hand.
The Swedish people have their stronghold here, and have proved themselves to be a sturdy, industrious people, thoroughly alive to the interest of the town and county. Mr. Albert Nance, a cousin of His Excellency, Gov. Nance, is agent for the Union Pacific Railway at this point, and the following statement of shipments of the past year furnished by him will indicate the importance of grain and stock interests.
FORWARDED. | RECEIVED. | Cars. | Cars. Hogs..................... 69 | Sheep.................... 1 Wheat.................... 129 | Salt..................... 3 Household goods.......... 2 | Farm machinery........... 4 Oats..................... 20 | Lime..................... 4 Machinery................ 1 | Trees.................... 1 Broom corn............... 52 | Coal (hard).............. 2 Flax..................... 7 | Lumber................... 83 Potatoes................. 1 | Coal (private)........... 78 Barley................... 2 | Coal (company)........... 172 Corn..................... 107 | Emigrant goods........... 6 Rye...................... 7 | Merchandise, oil, agri- Merchandise.............. 30 | cultural implements.... 313
A growing industry in the manufacture of brooms, and the cultivation of broom corn is recognized as a sure crop and is receiving much attention in this vicinity.
All branches of business are well represented, and the two enjoys a large and extensive trade.
Banking interests are represented by a branch of the Osceola Bank, owned by Messrs. Mickey, Nance & Morrill, of Osceola.
Press.--The Stromsburg Republican, a weekly journal, was inaugurated by the Stromsburg Town Company, in the spring of 1880, and placed under the management of S. C. Beach, who has since become sole proprietor.
The First Swedish Baptist Church was organized in the spring of 1873, by Rev. N. E. Axling. Rev. C. Lungrene, the first pastor of the church, took charge in July, 1873, remaining until the fall of 1875. From this date until June 23, 1880, when the present pastor, Rev. A. F. Palm, assumed his duties, the church was supplied at intervals. The church property includes a neat frame church and parsonage valued at $2,000. Membership, 103.
Swedish Lutheran.--This society was organized by Rev. Mr. Sweder, in the spring of 1874, and the church erected the following summer. Mr. Sweder became the first pastor of the church, presiding over it until 1876, at which date he was succeeded by Rev. C. Falk. Mr. Falk's ministry covers a period of about three years, when Rev. Mr. Bergrene settled at Stromsburg and commenced his labors as its pastor in July, 1880. He resigned his charge in March, 1881, and since that time, the church has been supplied occasionally from other points. Church property valued at $2,000.
Swedish Methodist.--This society is just organized, and, as yet, is a mission field.
Methodist Episcopal.--The Stromsburg Circuit was organized in the winter of 1879-80, from the Creswell and Osceola Circuits, and Stromsburg made the principal station. Rev. J. A. Larkin was in charge during the conference years of 1879-80, and was succeeded by the present pastor in charge, Rev. D. Y. Black. The Stromsburg class was organized in the winter of 1875-76, by Rev. D. C. Brannon.
Presbyterian.--The Presbyterian Church society was organized by Rev. Mr. Pangborn, in the fall of 1881, and is supplied by the pastor in charge at Osceola.
Grand Army of the Republic.--J. A. Mower Post, No. 59, G. A. R., was mustered by Capt. John S. Wood, of Omaha, October 2, 1880. The roster of charter members bears the names of the following veterans: J. B. Dey, Company F, Eighth Iowa Cavalry; W. C. Bartholomew, Company F, Seventh Iowa Infantry; C. C. Bennett, Company A, One Hundred and Second Illinois Infantry; J. N. Skelton, Company K, Fifty-eighth Illinois Infantry; William Cheny, Company H, Third Wisconsin Infantry; M. R. Barber, Company A, Twenty-sixth Indiana Infantry; D. Snally, Company A, Fifty-second Indiana Infantry; Eli Bennett, Company K, Fifteenth Illinois Infantry; W. H. Bolsby, Company B, Twenty-second Indiana Infantry; Thomas Klassy, Company F, Thirty-First Wisconsin Infantry; S. M. Woods, Company E, Fifty-seventh Pennsylvania Infantry; H. Baker, Company G, Fifty-third Pennsylvania Infantry; C. F. Graves, Company E, Seventeenth Iowa Infantry; John Hamilton, Company B, Thirty-second Illinois Infantry; George T. Palmer, Company A, Seventy-fifth Indiana Infantry; Dayton Fellows, Company F, Forty-sixth Ohio Infantry; J. L. Teeters, Company C, Sixty-second Ohio Infantry; John S. Palmer, Company K, Fifteenth Illinois Infantry; W. A. Biggs, Company K, One Hundred and First Illinois Infantry; John Hammond, Company I, One Hundred and Second Ohio Infantry; Samuel W. Taylor, Company B, Thirteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry; Amon Steever, Company I, Seventeenth Iowa Infantry; H. Kisler, Company G, One Hundred and Eighth Indiana Infantry; Joseph Kimball, Company B, One Hundred and Twenty-sixth Illinois Infantry; A. Shoemaker, Company B, Forty-seventh Illinois Infantry; J. N. Shoemaker, Company B, Forty-seventh Illinois Infantry; Albert S. Ames, Company I, Second Wisconsin Cavalry.
The first officers chosen were F. W. Taylor, P. C.; C. C. Bennett, S. V. C.; Eli Bennett, J. V. C.; J. B. Dey, Adjutant; William Cherry, O. M.; Dr. J. N. Skelton, Surgeon; J. C. Teeters, Chaplain; S. M. Woods, O. D.; M. R. Barber, O. G.
The Post has twenty-four comrades in good standing, and the officers elected for 1882, are as follows: H. Barber, P. C.; J. H. Coleman, S. V. C.; William Bartholomew, J. V. C.; J. B. Dey, Adjutant; William Cherry, Q. M.; Thomas Klassy, Surgeon; Perry McLaughlin, Chaplain; S. M. Woods, O. D.; Dayton Fellows, O. G.
Schools.--The town school bears an enviable reputation, and the citizens point to it with especial pride. A handsome frame schoolhouse has just been erected, and is now nearly finished. It is a large, two-story building, with corner tower, and adds much to the general appearance of the town.
Miss Annie Gray is the teacher in charge, and, under her careful labors, the schools are assuming a prominent position among those of the county.
The pupils in attendance number seventy-five; but there are 130 enrolled in the district.
BUCKLEY BROS., grain and live-stock dealers, Stromsburg. Pete T. Buckley, senior member of this firm, was born in Sweden, July 21, 1847; emigrated to the United States with his parents, who first settled in Knox County, Ill. Here Pete remained till the spring of 1871, when he moved to Nebraska and took up a homestead on Section 6, Town 13, Range 2 west, in Polk County, Stromsburg Precinct. He was the original purchaser of the present town platte of Stromsburg, after turning it over to the town company. He was one of the first settlers of that precinct, and has served one term as Assessor of that town. He was married December 2, 1880, to Miss Tillie C. Ross, who was born in Nebraska City, Neb.
JOHN B. BUCKLEY, junior member of the above firm, was born in Sweden September 17, 1849; came to Nebraska in the spring of 1873, also taking up a homestead on Section 12, Town 13, Range 3 west, where he still resides. He also served one term as Assessor of his precinct; was married March 17, 1878, to Miss Christine Wedga, who was born in Sweden. John was the first grain buyer at Stromsburg, and shipped the first car load of grain from that town, January 1, 1880. In 1881, this firm shipped over three hundred and fifty cars of grain and live stock from that station.
BERG & CASTILE, merchants, Stromsburg, commenced business in 1880. The building which they occupy is 22x70, and well filled with a complete stock of dry goods, clothing, boots, shoes, etc. John E. Castile, of the above firm, was born in Jefferson County, Iowa, December 4, 1854, and August Burg was born in Sweden in 1849, coming to the United States in 1869, and to Nebraska in November, 1880.
ANDREW V. CARLSON, of the firm of Carlson & Co., hardware merchants, Stromsburg, came to Nebraska in 1873 with his parents, who bought a farm on Section 1, Town 13, Range 2 west. In 1876, the subject of this sketch went to Osceola and started to clerking in a general merchandise store for Bates & Woods. Here he remained until the fall of 1879, then moved to Stromsburg, and, in the spring following, started his present business, which was the first hardware store started in that town; was born in Jefferson County, Iowa, July 22, 1856. He was Census Enumerator for Stromsburg Precinct in 1880. For the year 1881, this firm did about $18,000 business.
OLOF HEADSTROM, wagon and carriage manufacturer, Stromsburg, also dealer in farm machinery, was born in Sweden, September 21, 1850, and here learned the trade of wagon and carriage manufacturing. He came to the United States in July, 1871, first locating in Henry County, Ill., where he worked at different kinds of work until 1873, at which time he came West to Nebraska and took up a homestead in Polk County, on Section 2, Town 13, Range 3 west, Stromsburg Precinct. Here he lived on the farm until the fall of 1878, when he moved to the town of Stromsburg and started a wagon and blacksmith shop, under the firm name of Headstrom & Olson, so continuing until November, 1881, when they dissolved, and Mr. H. started in business for himself. He served as Assessor of Stromsburg Precinct in 1879, and is at present Secretary of Stromsburg town. He was married in 1879, to Miss Jennie Falk, who was born in Sweden, and by whom he has one son--Fridolf Leonard.
LEWIS HEADSTROM, Postmaster and real estate agent at Stromsburg, also agent for the U. P. R. R., was born in Sweden, May 24, 1834. He came to the United States in 1856, locating first at Galesburg, Ill., where he remained for three years working at the carpenter's trade, and then removed to Galva, where he started a cabinet shop, and was also superintendent of Olof Johnson's farm for two years. He was married in Galesburg, Ill., in 1859, to Miss Carrie Anderson, who was also a native of Sweden. In 1869, he took a trip back to the old country to see his friends, and when he returned be brought over a number of emigrants. In the spring of 1871, he was the instigator of the Scandinavian colony that came to Nebraska in the same year, settling in Polk County, where the present village of Stromsburg now stands, the subject of this sketch being the founder of said town and also laying it out. He made his home at Galva, Ill., until 1872, when he moved his family to Stromsburg, Neb., and in 1873 was appointed Postmaster at that place, and also started the first store there.
NELS. F. PETERSON, furniture dealer and undertaker, Stromsburg, was born in Sweden November 27, 1844. When old enough he learned the carpenter's trade, at which he worked until the fall of 1867, when he came to the United States, first locating in Knox County, Ill., where he still worked at his trade, and afterward farmed until the spring of 1871, at which time he came West to Nebraska, settling in Polk County, where he entered a homestead on Section 32, Town 14, Range 2 west, Stromsburg Precinct. Here he resided, improving his farm and working at his trade until the fall of 1878, when he removed to the village of Stromsburg and opened a furniture store, it being the first one in the place. Mr. Peterson was married in 1875, at Columbus, Neb., to Miss Matilda Nelson, who was also born in Sweden.
JACOB P. SMITH, Notary Public and dealer in agricultural implements, Stromsburg, came to Nebraska in March, 1871, and took up a homestead on Section 8, Town 13, Range 2 west, on which he has lived since that time. He introduced farm machinery into Polk County in the spring of 1873, opening an office at the above-mentioned place. The subject of this sketch was born in Belknap County, N. H., on the 14th of January, 1829, and in 1862, crossed the plains, returning in 1864, during which year he was married to Miss Ada Shoemaker. Mr. S. was the first Justice of the Peace of his precinct, holding that office for two terms, and is, at this writing, one of the Trustees of Stromsburg Town Company.
EPHRAIM F. SMELSER, farmer, Section 22, P. O. Osceola, was born in Bedford County, Penn., April 20, 1821. He left his native State with his family in April, 1855, and came to Benton County, Iowa, where he followed the trade of plastering. From here he enlisted in August, 1862, in Company A, Twenty-eighth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, serving until the close of the war. He then returned to Iowa and commenced farming. In 1866, he moved to Marshall County and continued his former occupation until 1872; at that time removed to Nebraska and took up a homestead on which he now lives. He moved his family on to it the following spring. Mr. Smelser is Justice of the Peace in Stromsburg Precinct. He is a member of the G. A. R., and a charter member of the J. F. Reynolds Post, No. 26, of Osceola, being also a member of the A., F. & A. M. He was married in June, 1843, in Pennsylvania, to Miss Dorothy Snider. They have eight children--Mary J., Susanna, Tobias C., Charles W., Benjamin F., John B., Ellen and Altha E.
JOHN VAN HORN, farmer Section 23, Town 13 Range 4 west, P. O. Stromsburg, was born in Westmoreland County, Penn., on April 17, 1818. When he was about ten years of age, his parents moved to Columbiana County, Ohio, and settled on a farm, where the subject of this sketch lived and received a common school education until 1839. He then went to Scott County, Iowa where he purchased an interest in a saw-mill, which he operated until the spring of 1843, when he moved to Jackson County and engaged at farming and stock-raising until 1872. He then came to Nebraska, and after making preliminary surveys, he finally bought a half section of land, where he now lives, and in 1873 brought out some teams with which he began to improve his farm. In June, 1874, he moved his family on to his farm and has since made that his home, and now owns 560 acres, of which 320 are under cultivation. Mr. Van Horn has served six years as Commissioner of Polk County. He was married in Jackson County, Iowa, on May 1, 1844, to Miss Catherine A. Waldo, of New York. They have nine children living--Orison H., Milo M., Mary A., Charles H., Chauncy H., Estella, Edward D., Litta and John. The two oldest sons were soldiers in the rebellion.
FERDINAND F. VOGEL, of the firm of F. F. Vogel & Bros., farmers and dealers in agricultural implements, Section 8, Town 13, Range 2 west P. O. Stromsburg, was born in Jefferson County, Iowa, February 9, 1846. He is the son of Gottfried and Christina Vogel, who came to the United States, the former in 1835, the latter in 1817, locating in Columbiana County, Ohio, where they were married and lived until 1845, when they moved West to Iowa, where they lived until 1880, when they removed to Nebraska to live with the subject of this sketch, who removed there in February, 1872, and taking up the homestead described at the heading of this sketch. After coming here he lived in a sod house for four years, at the end of which time he replaced it with a fine frame building, 22x26, and one and a half stories high. Mr. Vogel was married November 23, 1871, to Miss Amy E. Murrow, of Jefferson County, Iowa. Their family consists of three children--Ethis M., Alvin C. and Iven G. He is a member of the I. O. O. F., and was a charter member of Rising Star Lodge, No. 65, at Osceola.
JOSEPH D. WOODS, of the firm of L. M. Woods & Co., merchants, Stromsburg, came to Nebraska in 1870, and took up a homestead on Section 24, Town 14, Range 2 west, Butler County, where he resided four years, and then removed to Seward, where he kept hotel, and in 1878, came to Osceola and started a hotel, which he ran till January, 1882, when he removed to Stromsburg and became a member of the present firm of L. M. Woods & Co. He was born in Mercer County, Penn., on June 19, 1819. He served three years as a soldier in the rebellion, enlisting in Company G, Eighty-third Volunteer Infantry. L. M. Woods, of this firm, was born in February, 1850.