Topography—This township is quite rolling, but all the land can practically be cultivated, and the soil is very productive.

There are a number of very good farms and homes and a few tree claim groves, which were in all cases planted by the homesteader. The city cf Bristol is located in Section 25 of this township. Those still living on their land are: Otto Machmiller, Ben P. Moorehouse, G. A. Chamberlain, J. Geier.

The first child born here was Maud Bennett, born to Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Bennett, February 2, 1887.

The first marriage was that of George A. Bennett and Emma F. Ross, April 21, 1886.

The first death came to John Doe, a railroad surveyor, August, 1883.

The largest family was born to Mr. and Mrs. J. Geier, seven sons and six daughters, all living. One daughter is married and lives in the town of Bristol.

This township was named after the railroad had named the town of Bristol.

Dates of settlement of homesteaders:

1880—Wm. Rankin.

1881—R. P. Brokaw, F. W. Lowell, Timonthy Lowell.

1882—Math Evans.

1883—John Evans, J. L. Paul, Peter Zipf, Frank Stevens, A. B. Byron, Ben Towne, M. Thoenes, T. Strandness, A. D. Faulkner, B. E. Jones, C. S. Austin, (J. P.) C. S. Blodgett, Fred Chaddock, Geo. A. Seeley, Fred Lemke, Mrs. Mary Armstrong, A. V. Vandersluch, J. W. Stevenson, C. B. Knott.

1884—Julian Bennet, Geo. Forbes, Nick Moxness, Chas. Duell, N. J. Sorum, J. P. Christenson, N. C. Hagey, A. Nilson, James Clemens, Scott Cowan, R. B. and H. E. Sabin, C. A. Moxness, H. M. Patterson, Ole Soland, Elias Molee, Mrs. S. Austin, Ole 0. Nerland, N. B. Treat, C. J. Wahl, Louis Machmiller.

1885—B. P. Moorehouse, James Taylor, M. Baker, A. L. Smithers, Emery Clemens, J. H. Chamberlain, Miss Dora Russell.

1886-87—Mrs. Mary McAllen, Miss Emma A. Piber, Jacob Geier.


Louis Machmiller came from Wisconsin to this Township in 1884 when he filed a homestead on which he has continued to reside. To his original homestead he has since added 640 acres, all of which he farms with the exception of 160 acres which his married son farms. He was married to Miss Elizabeth Burton, July 27, 1892, and to them were born four boys and two girls, all living. For several years previous to their marriage, Mrs. Machmiller was a rural school teacher, being one of the very first in this township.


Mr. Machmiller practices diversified farming; milks ten cows, markets thirty-five to forty hogs and one hundred turkeys, annually. He puts in about one hundred acres of corn, thirty-five acres of alfalfa and thirty of sweet clover for feeding purposes each year. He has a splendid fruit orchard. The grove, shown in the above picture contains about five acres.

Phone and R. F. D., Bristol, S. D.


Mr. H. F. Hansmeier came to America from Germany, as a young man landing at Waukcon, Iowa. He remained there until 1900, when he came to Bristol. In 1907 he was married to Miss Helen Helming and to them were born one son and one daughter.

Soon after reaching Iowa, Mr. Hansmeier realized the need of more education and special training in some particular field. He chose scientific farming and attended the agricultural school at Ames, Iowa following this up with practical experience on Iowa farms. With this training and an idea, he came to Bristol and started farming on a small scale.


In 1911 he started with 13 acres of genuine Grimm alfalfa and by 1925 he had increased this to 1400, from which he cuts hay and pedigreed seed. With this seed he supplies thousands of farmers in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and other states. He has his own elevator and seed cleaning equipment. In 1925 he handled and cleaned nine car loads of sweet clover, for seed purposes.

His annual corn crop is about 300 acres, besides his other grain crops. He feeds and markets: 400 to 500 cattle, 250 to 300 hogs, which always top the market.

Along with all this, Mr. Hansmeier is also engaged in the bee industry, constantly retaining a partner, who is an expert in bee culture. They have 100 hives and in 1925 they marketed four to five tons of strained honey. His brand is "Sunshine Honey."

Mr. Hansmeier directs his business from his home in Bristol.


©2003, Virginia A. Cisewski