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Murray County, Minnesota

 


Biographies


W.H. BOTTOMS

On the roster of Murray county’s officials is the name of this gentleman who is now serving as register of deeds. This is an important and responsible position, for upon the care and precision of the incumbent may often rest questions which involve the disposal of property, frequently of great value.

Mr. Bottoms was born in Freeport, Illinois, September 12, 1862, a son of James and Anna (Farrell) Bottoms, the former a native of England and the latter of Ireland. Both came to America in early life, and after their marriage located in Freeport, Illinois, where the father resided until his death, which occurred during the early childhood of our subject. His wife, who survives him, has been a second time married, and is now living on a farm in Murray county, Minnesota.

Our subject is the first child of the first marriage. His younger brother, John, is still living, and is now a resident of Minnesota. When W. H. Bottoms was still a young lad he went with his brother to Elkader, Clayton county, Iowa, where he continued to reside until May, 1875, when with relatives and friends he came to Murray county, Minnesota, where he has since made his home. After his mother’s second marriage he went to live with her and continued to make his home there for ten years. On attaining his majority he started out in life for himself, and naturally turned his attention to farming, with which he was familiar from boyhood. He purchased one hundred and sixty acres of choice land in Lime Lake township, Murray county, which he still owns, and which by him has been highly cultivated and improved. He transformed the wild prairie into rich fields, and contin-ued his farming operations until called to public office.

In 1892 Mr. Bottoms was nominated for the office of register of deeds of Murray county, and was elected for a term of two years. Such was the capability he displayed in the discharge of his duties that he was at once re-elected for a second term, and is therefore the incumbent in the office at this writing in 1896. His official career is without blemish, and reflects credit upon the constituents who called him to office. In November, 1885, was consummated the marriage of Mr. Bottoms and Miss Mary Kiernan, a native of Wisconsin, where she was reared and educated. For several terms she was numbered among the success-ful school-teachers of Murray county. She is now the mother of an interesting family of two sons and three daughters, and Mr. Bottoms with his wife and children resides in the pleasant home on Fourth street, in the village of Slayton. Socially our subject is a valued member of the orders of Knights of Pythias and the Modern Woodmen of America.

Memorial Record of SW Minnesota - submitted by Gary Boomgaarden


Clarence Christopher Dinehart

Source: Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ.  1907) Transcribed by Kim Mohler

DINEHART Clarence Christopher, Slayton. State treasurer. Born April 3, 1877 in Chicago. Moved with parents to Slayton in 1884; attended Slayton schools; Central High School Minneapolis, and graduated from U of M 1899; asst cashr State Bank of Slayton 1899-1902; pres village council until 1902; resigned to take law course in U of M from which he graduated 1905; re-entered banking business and was elected state treasurer on Republican ticket 1906.


Nicolai Field
Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Anna Parks

FIELD Nicolai F, Fergus Falls. Lawyer. Born Aug 13, 1872 in Murray county Minn, son of Fred N and Carrie Field. Married Sept 19, 1900 to Ida Adams. Educated in common schools Ottr Tail county; high school Fergus Falls and graduated from Ia College of Law 1899. Engaged in law practice in Fergus Falls 1899 to date. Member of Haupt & Field; city atty 1903 to date. Member Masonic fraternity, I O O F and K of P.


Ole O. Holmen

- The name of this gentleman is indelibly engraved on the scroll of Minnesota's prominent citizens. He is now representing his district in the house of representatives, and in the discharge of the important duties devolving upon him has
manifested a loyalty to the best interests of Minnesota that has awakened the respect of men of all political preferences. He is an active factor in the commercial interests of Slayton, where he makes his home, and his career, both public and private, is a credit to the land of his birth and the land of his adoption.
Mr. Holmen was born on a farm in Norway, December 21, 1864, a son of Ole and Ellen Holmen, who crossed the Atlantic to the New World in 1871, landing at New York city, whence they went direct to Iowa. They made their first location upon a farm in Winneshiek county, and four years later removed to Chickasaw county, Iowa. In 1880 they came to Murray county, Minnesota, locating in Leeds township, where the father carried on agricultural pursuits until 1896, since which time he has lived retired in Slayton.
His life has been quiet and unostentatious, but such as to win the respect and confidence of those with whom he has been brought in contact.
The gentleman whose name introduces this review is the fifth of seven children who attained maturity in his father's family. He was a lad of seven at the time of emigration to America, and in this country he acquired his education in the district schools, and in
Augsburg Seminary, of Minneapolis, Minn. On completing his education he returned to his parents' home in Murray county, and then went to Hadley, where he entered the employ of F. H. Peavey & Company, dealers in grain, remaining with that firm for
three years. On the expiration of that period he came to Slayton and acted as a salesman in the store of his brother Edward, with whom he continued until January, 1896, when he entered into partnership with John Christianson, under the firm name of Holmen & Christianson. They deal in  all kinds of general merchandise, carrying a large and well-selected stock of goods. They are now enjoying a fair trade, their business constantly increasing.
In politics Mr. Holmen is an advocate of Republican principles. While living in Hadley he served as a member of the town board, and in the fall of 1892 he was elected to the house of representatives from the seventh legislative district, composed of the counties of Rock, Nobles, Pipestone and Murray. During his four-years term he has acted on several important committees, including those on railroads, courts, insurance and public lands. He makes personal interests and personal ambition subservient to the public good, and is a valued member of the lower branch of the legislature. Socially, he is connected with Murray Lodge, No. 196, F. & A. M., of which he is past master; also belongs to Charity Lodge, I. O. O. F., of which he is past grand, and to the Knights of Pythias lodge, of which he is past chancellor.


George P. Kelley

COL. GEORGE P. KELLEY, commander of the Sons of Veterans, District of Minnesota, and belonging to Camp No. 15. Tracy, Minnesota, is one of the prominent young men of the southern part of this state. He comes of a family that has been represented in nearly all the wars of this country, and himself has the distinction of being one of the very youngest soldiers that fought in the Union ranks during the late war. His history is replete with interest and is as follows:
George P. Kelley was ushered into life at Meadville, Erie county, Pennsylvania, September 19, 1850, and is a son of James and Sally A. (Gibson) Kelley, both natives of the same county. James Kelley is now living retired in Marquette county, Wisconsin, and is seventy-five years of age. Until recently he continued work at his trade, that of blacksmith. He is a veteran of the civil war. He enlisted in December, 1863, as a member of the Eighth Wisconsin Battery, and was on duty until the close of the war, when he was honorably discharged. His wife died in Marquette county, Wisconsin, at the age of si.xty-eight years. She was a most estimable woman, a devoted wife and loving mother. Of her eight children, only three are now living. Looking back still further to the ancestry of our subject, we find that the Kelleys originated in Ireland and emigrated to America shortly before the opening of the Revolutionary war, and that the Gibsons, his mother's people, were of Scotch extraction and came to this country from Scotland about the time the Kelleys landed here. Grandfather William J. Kelley was a mail-carrier in the Revolutionary war, serving under General Washington, and lived to be over ninety-nine years old. Grandfather Gibson was also a mail-carrier in the same war; and in this connection we further state that our subject had an uncle, a Doctor Gibson, who served in the late war.
George P. Kelley was reared in the village of Fordham, Wisconsin, where the family settled about 1855. When the great war cloud gathered and burst upon the country he was but a child. He had, however, the patriotism of his forefathers, and boy as he was he was impatient to go out and fight for the preservation of the Union. Twice he offered to enlist and twice his youth and his parents objections kept him from being accepted; but October 17, 1864, at the age of fourteen, when he a third time tendered his service, he was enrolled as a member of Company D, Nineteenth Wisconsin Infantry, and was with his command until the war was over. He was with his regiment at the capture of Richmond, it being the first regiment to enter the city. He was honorably discharged at Fredericksburg, Virginia, July 8, 1865. Among the engagements in which he participated was the battle of Fair Oaks, he being one of the sixteen out of two hundred and forty who came out of that battle alive, but he came with a wound in his leg, from the effects of which he was confined in the hospital three weeks. A braver, truer soldier bov than Geor^'^e P. Kelley never marched beneath the stars and stripes.
The war over, young Kelley returned to his Wisconsin home, and from that time until 1878 was variously employed along the river. In 1878 he came over into Minnesota and took claim to a tract of land in Holly township, Murray county, the same upon which he has since lived and prospered. His first home here was a shanty, twelve by fourteen feet, in which he and his family lived until he was able to build a more comfortable and convenient house. Later he added to his original tract by the purchase of forty acres adjoining it, and from year to year he has made improvements until he has now one of the most desirable farms in his locality; and here he divides his time between general farming and stock-raising. In 1895 he aided in the organization of the creamery which is located half a mile from his home, was one of its first officers and is now a director in the company.
Mr. Kelley was married December 18, 1876, to Miss Mary Cross, a native of Utica county. New York, and a daughter of Chester and Mary Cross, both now deceased, her mother having died at McGregor, Iowa, and her father at Fayette, that state.
In fraternal circles Mr. Kelley has long been prominent and active. He is identified with the G. A. R., S. of V., and I. O. O. F., being now vice grand of the lodge. His G. A. R. membership is in Joe Hooker Post at Tracy, in which he has served officially, and in the Sons of Veterans of that place, as stated at the beginning of this sketch, he is presiding officer. For four years he was captain of the company to which he belongs and recently he was elected colonel of the division, an honor fittingly bestowed. During the past four years he has organized eight new camps in southwestern Minnesota, has given his time freely to the work of the order, and has rendered most efficient service. Mr. Kelley's identity with the I. O. O. F. covers a period of twenty-two years. Politically, he is a Republican. He has filled various offices of local prominence and trust. He ran for county sheriff in 1894, and not long since was asked to allow his name to be used as a candidate for the state legislature.

[Source: Memorial Record of SW Minnesota, published 1897 - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden]


Thomas Lowe, M.D.

THOMAS LOWE, M. D., a physician and surgeon of Slayton, has won marked prestige as a member of the medical profession in this section of the state. Success in his chosen calling comes only through careful preparation, earnest endeavor and fidelity to the interest of the business, and the high reputation which Dr. Lowe has gained has come through exercise of these qualities.
A native of Canada, the Doctor was born near the city of Montreal, November 8, 1858, and is of Scotch descent. His parents, James and Wilhelmina (Schlaberg) Lowe, were both natives of Scotland, but came to Canada when young, and in 1868 they removed with their family to Bremer county, Iowa. The father was a farmer by occupation and carried on agricultural pursuits in Iowa until 1876, when he came to Murrary county, Minnesota, and secured a homestead near Hadley, where his death occurred in 1896. His wife passed away in 1883.
Our subject is the fifth in the family of eight children, of whom six sons and a daughter are living. He spent his boyhood on the farm in Canada until nine years of age and there acquired his elementary education. He then accompanied his parents to Iowa, where her continued to attend scholl, spending two years as a student in Decorah Institute. For a time he engaged in the profession of teaching and later continued his studies in the Decorah Institute of Iowa. For three years thereafter he followed the teacher's profession, and then took up the study of medicine, spending one year in the office of Dr. A.M. Tuttle, of Britt, Iowa. Subsequently he graduated at Hahnemann Medical College, of Chicago, in 1885, with high honors, standing second in a class of ninety seven members.
Dr. Lowe came immediately to Slayton, where he entered upon the practice of his profession, and is now recognized as a leading physician of the place, being weill established in a large and lucrative business. His most excellent preparation, combined with native talent and a deep and sincere interest in his chosen profession, without which there is no success, has gained him high prestige as a physician and surgeon. He holds membership in the American Institute of Homeopathy, the Homeopathic State Medical Society of South Dakota, and belongs to the Minnesota Homeopathic Institute, of which organization he is vice president.
In June 1887, was celebrated the marriage of Dr. Lowe and Miss Sarah Southwell, of Wenona, Illinois, a daughter of Captain O.M. Southwell and a native of Wenona. They now have two interesting children, William and Alice. Their home is a beautiful and commodious frame residence, built in a modern style of architecture, and is noted as a place of hospitality. Dr. Lowe is an esteemed member of the Masonic Fraternity and also affilitates with the Modern Woodmen of America and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. In politics he is a stalwart Republican, and has been honored with various offices of trust, having served as village recorder, secretary of the school board and county coroner. He is deeply interested in all that pertains to the welfare and advancement of the community, is a stanch adherent of the public school system, and belongs to that class of honorable, respected citizens who are the true strengh of the American republic.
[Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - submitted by Gary Boomgaarden]


B.F. LYNCH

In the business interests which have added to the material welfare of Slayton is included the Slayton Roller Mills, owned by the prominent and well known firm of Klingler & Lynch. Their business is one of the leading industrial concerns in the county seat of Murray county, and the owners are men of known reliability, whose progressiveness and enterprise have been of great benefit to the town. The mill was erected in 1886 by J. P. Smith of Kasota, Minnesota, —a roller mill with a capacity of forty barrels. It was operated by Mr. Smith for one year, and then sold to Foster & Dinehart. In March, 1890, it became the property of the present proprietors, since which time the capacity has been increased to seventy-five barrels per day, and many improvements have been made. A seventy-five-horse-power Corliss engine has been put in operation, together with a ninety-horse-power boiler and the finest machinery of other kinds. A new fire-proof building for the engine and boiler . house has been erected, making one of the most thoroughly equipped mills in this section of the state The products of the mill are of the best possible quality and find a ready sale on the market. They manufacture a number of fine brands of wheat tlour, together with corn, rye and buckwheat products, and do a general exchange business as well as selling direct to various markets. The firm also buys, sells and ships all kinds of grain, and in connection with the mill has a large elevator with a capacity of ten thousand bushels. The business has now assumed extensive proportions, and the thoroughly reliable methods and the well known integrity of the proprietor have secured for them a most excellent trade, from which they derive a good income.
The leading citizens of a town are the promoters of its commercial enterprises, men who by their well directed efforts in business advance the general prosperity. To this class belongs B. F. Lynch; and it is with pleasure that we present a record of his life to our readers.
He was born in New York city, May 21, 1863, and is a son of Philip and Ann ( Barnard ) Lynch. When a child of two years he was taken by his parents to the town of Hudson, on the river of that name, where he remained for fifteen years. Our subject attended the public schools, and subsequently spent two years in the Litchfield Academy, of Litch field, Connecticut, thus acquiring a good practical education. In the year 1880 he accompanied his parents to Adrian, Nobles county, Minnesota, where he worked on a farm for a year; later he was employed in the Adrian mill for a year, and subsequently went to Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where he was engaged in the same business for a year.

On the expiration of that period, Mr.Lynch took up his residence in Luverne, and accepted a position in the flouring mill owned by W. H. Wilson, where he remained as a trusted and efficient employee for six years. He mastered the business in every detail, and for four years had complete charge of the mill. In the fall of 1887 he came to Slayton and served as manager in the mill, of which he is now proprietor, then owned by Foster & Dinehart. Forming a partnership with Victor Klingler, in March, 1890, they purchased the mills, which they have since made so famous throughout the northwest.
In August, 1892, occurred an important event in the life of Mr. Lynch, —the celebration of his marriage to Miss Louise Shepard, of Slayton, the youngest daughter of the late Dr. N. P. Shepard, a prominent physician and influential citizen of Murray county. They now have two interesting children, — Marie Bernice and William Francis.

In his social relations, Mr. Lynch is a Knight of Pythias and a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. He has been honored by local office, having served for two years as a member of the village council, where his fidelity to duty and marked devotion to the best interests of Slayton made him a valued official. His business integrity is above question, his private life is pure and honorable, and today among the most esteemed residents of Slayton is numbered B. F. Lynch.

Memorial Record of SW Minnesota-submitted by Gary Boomgaarden


Harry Morell

HARRY MORELL, M. D., C. M., is a prominent young physician and surgeon of Slayton, Murray county, and his native talents and acquired ability are rapidly winning him a place among the leading members of the profession in southwestern Minnesota. He was born in Toronto, Canada, February 5, 1869, and is a son of Samuel and Georgiana Morell. His father was a leading business man of Toronto, and died in Canada some years ago. The mother is still living and yet makes her home in the British province. They had eight children, four sons and four daughters, all of whoni are yet living.

The Doctor is the fourth in order of birth and his boyhood days were spent in his native city, where he attended the public schools for a time, and afterward became a student in a private school. In 1887 he was enrolled among the students of Trinity University and soon afterward entered Trinity Medical College, where he was graduated in April, 1892. The same year he was also graduated at Victoria University, having therein devoted considerable time to the mastery of the science of surgery. Not long after, by examination, he was admitted a Fellow of Trinity Medical College. During 1892 he served by appointment as assistant physician in Mimico Asylum, and while in college held various infirmary appointments.

In the fall of 1892, Dr. Morell came to Slayton, Minnesota, where he embarked in general practice, and is now well established in his profession, having a large and lucrtive practice. He is a close student, keeping abreast with the progress that is constantly being made in the sciences of both medicine and surgery. His broad and comprehensive knowledge of both departments and his application of his learning to the needs of mankind has been such as to win him marked prestige, and although one of the younger representatives of the medical fraternity he is also one of the most able and honored in Murray county.

Dr. Morell is a licentiate of the state medical examining board by examination, a member of the Minnesota State Medical Society, and a member and treasurer of the Southwestern  Minnesota     Medical Society. He is now a health officer of the village of Slayton, and in 1896 was appointed physician of Murray county, while for the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha Railroad he is now serving as local surgeon.

On the 29th of January, 1896, the Doctor led to the marriage altar Miss Euphemia Richardson, of Slayton, a teacher in the Minneapolis schools and a daughter of Robert Richardson. Socially, he is connected with Murray Lodge, No. [99, F. & A. M., of which he is secretary, and is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. He was elected and served as justice of the peace of Slayton, and is a prominent and respected young physician of the county, who undoubtedly has a bright future before him.
Memorial Record of SW Minnesota-submitted by Gary Boomgaarden


Peter Peterson

HON. PETER PETERSON, treasurer of Murray county, is numbered among the prominent residents of Slayton. His life has been well spent, and the high regard in which he is held makes him well deserving  of representation in this volume. In a brief sketch of any living citizen it is difficult to do him exact and impartial justice, not so much from lack of space as for want of the perfect and rounded conception of his whole life, which grows, develops and ripens, like fruit, to disclose its true and best flavor only when it is mellowed by time. Daily contact with the man so familiarizes us with his many virtues that we ordinarily overlook them, but it is the province of this volume to set forth in true light the life of the best citizens of southwestern Minnesota, and such a volume would be incomplete without a record of Mr. Peterson.
He was born in Waldres, Norway, December 17, 1846, a son of Iver and Gertrude (Ingebretson) Peterson, also natives of Norway. During his infancy his parents crossed the Atlantic to the United States and located in Wisconsin, where they spent three and a half years on a farm. They then removed to Winneshiek county, Iowa, where the father secured land from the government and established a home among the pioneer settlers of that locality, there being not more than a dozen families in the county at the time of his arrival there. 
Our subject remained at his parents' home until the war, attending the district schools of the neighborhood through the winter and aiding in the development of the farm during the summer. On the 7th of June, 1863, he enlisted at the country's call for volunteers as a member of Company H, Seventeenth Iowa Cavalry, and served for two years and eleven months. He was a member of that division of the army which operated in the expeditions against the Indians throughout Kansas and Nebraska, participating in many engagements with the red men. It was arduous service, often-times fraught with great peril, but he remained faithful to his post of duty until mustered out of service at the close of the war.
On receiving an honorable discharge, Mr. Peterson returned to his parents' home in Winneshiek county, Iowa, and thence went to Freeborn county, Minnesota, but in the following autumn removed to Jackson county, where he located a tract of railroad land. There he continued to make his home for four years, when he came to Murray county in connection with his father and his brother Albert. They located here, forty- eight hundred and seventy acres of land in various claims. Mr. Peterson of this review continued to reside on his farm until 1885, when he sold and removed to Slayton, where for one year he was engaged in the real-estate business. The following year he purchased a stock of general merchandise, and continued in that line of trade until the fall of 1889, and in the fall of 1890 he was elected treasurer of Murray county. He entered upon the duties of his office on the 1st of January, 1891, and has since served in that capacity, having been twice reelected.
In June, 1875, Mr. Peterson married Miss Thea Christiansen, who was born in Norway, February 4, 1855, a daughter of C. and Caroline Christianson. They now have seven children : Ignatius Conrad, deceased, Ira Curtis. Ernest Dean, Clara Gertrude, Nora, deceased, Florentia, Ida Maria and Peter Murray. Nora, by her death, left five children.
Mr. Peterson is a stalwart advocate of Populist principles, and on the Republican ticket was elected register of deeds of Murray county for one term. He also served for three terms as county commissioner, and in 1886 represented his district in the state legislature. He is an esteemed member of the Masonic fraternity, the Modern Woodmen of America ami the Grand Army of the Republic, and is one of the most prominent and influential citizens of Murray county, whose business, political and military record is one that reflects credit upon him.

[Source: Memorial Record of SW Minnesota, published 1897 - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden]


Henry F. Pfeifer
Source: The Saint Paul Globe (MN) December 28, 1890; transcribed by Mary Kay Krogman

[note: guessing number of votes]
Henry F. Pfeifer, Slayton, Murray county, guessed 58,645 for Owen and took the second prize. To the GLOBE correspondent he gave the following sketch of his life.

I was born in Prussia-Saxony, Germany, March 30, 1866; came to America in 1871, settling with my parents in New Ulm, Minn., where I was raised and schooled; the candidate for lieutenant governor, E. G. Pahl, on the Democratic ticket this fall, was one of my teachers; at the age of fifteen years I left school and immediately entered the office of the New Ulm Post, a German paper, as an apprentice, serving over two years; I left the parental roof in 1883, and in September of the same year I came to Currie, Murray county, Minnesota, and entered the employ of J. A. Maxwell, publisher of the Murray County Pioneer, in whose employ I have been ever since; I took charge of the Pioneer, then Published at Currie, Aug. 8, 1889, and have had charge of it up to date; The Pioneer has since been moved to Slayton, Minn., which is my present address. Mr. Maxwell, the proprietor, is a resident of Fulda, Minn., where he owns and edits the Murray County Republican; I was married on Thanksgiving day, Nov. 24, 1887, to Miss Janie Shipley, who died at Currie, Jan. 19, 1890; politically I am a Prohibitionist, having been the Murray county delegate to the congressional and state conventions this year.


Bernhardt Schellenberg

BERNHARDT SCHELLENBERG, is one of the worthy citizens that  Germany has furnished to Murray county. He was born in Saxe Altenburg, of the fatherland, on the 22d of September, 1844, and is a son of Gottfried and Anna (Kratsch) Schellenberg. The mother died in Germany about 1850, and the father afterward married again and emigrated with his family to America in 1855, crossing the Atlantic in a sailing vessel, which was fifty-four days in making the voyage of Bremen to New York. The father proceeded at once to Wisconsin, where he had friends living, leaving his wife and four children in New York. The stepmother there deserted the children, who were sent to an orphans’ home on Ward’s island, where they remained for two years. During that time our subject worked in a cigar factory in New York for two years, for his board and clothes.  The father had lost all trace of the children, but continued his search until at length, through advertising, he found them. Sending money for the trip the children then joined their father in Ozaukee county, Wisconsin, where he was employed in making shingles. He died in that county, in 1887.  The children were Herman, who became a prominent citizen of Wisconsin and served in the general assembly in 1894; Bernhardt; Frank, who is a member of the wholesale company of Felix & Marston; and Emma, wife of Fred Arndt, of Welcome, Martin county, Minnesota.

Mr. Schellenberg, whose name heads this sketch, was employed by the man for whom his father worked in Wisconsin, and during the first two years received only his board and clothing in compensation for his services. During the third year he was given three dollars per month. In 1859 he went to the copper regions of Lake Superior and worked in the mines for six years, during which time he saved from his earnings sufficient capital to purchase sixty acres of land, a tract in Washington county, Wisconsin. He operated that farm for two years, and then sold out, purchasing sixty acres of landof his brother. This second tract he continued to cultivate until 1887, when he againsold, and in March of that year came to Murray county, Minnesota. Here he bought two hundred acres of land on section 36, Slayton township, nearly all of which was in its primitive condition, with not a furrow turned or an improvement made thereon.He plowed and planted the land and in course of time richly cultivated fields were yielding to him a golden harvest. He now has two hundred and forty acres of land,upon which he has planted a fine grove, and erected buildings, modern in appearance and substantial in structure. His methods of farming are progressive and up to the times in every particular, and he is recognized as one of the leading agriculturists of the community.

Mr. Schellenberg was married in Ozaukee county, Wisconsin, to Mrs. Mary (Boehm) Stazenberg, who was born in Austria, in 1836. They have eight children, seven of whom are living, namely: Hugo, Otto, Ida, Frank, Amelia, William and Anna. Our subject is a member of the Lutheran church, gives his political support to the Republican party, and is a public-spirited, progressive citizen, deeply interested in all that pertains to the welfare of the community.

[Source: Memorial Record of SW Minnesota, published 1897 - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden]


James Smith

JAMES SMITH is one of the leading a agriculturists of Murray county and possesses the sturdy, reliable characteristics of the Scotch race, together with an energy and enterprise that has brought him success in his business career.  He was born in Glasgow, Scotland January 3, 1835. His father, James Smith, Sr., emigrated with his famil to the United States when our subject was a child of only four years, and took up his abode in the western part of Massachusetts. He was a weaver by trade and removed to various places in order to secure employment. He died in Waverly, Iowa, in the latter part of the '50s. His wife, Mrs. Margaret Smith, was born in the Highlands of Scotland, and died in Marshall county, Illinois, in 1885.  Mr. Smith, of this review, has spent the greater part of his life as an agriculturist, but in his early years followed various occupations. He was reared principally in New York, and when about twenty-one years of age removed to Cleveland, Ohio, after which he was engaged for sometime in sailing on the lakes during the summer season.  Subsequently he removed to Chicago, where he followed teaming until 1865, when he went to Marshall county, Illinois, and rented a farm. He made it his home until 1886, when he came to Murray county and purchased three hundred and twenty acres of land on section 3, Slayton township. The buildings which he has erected are modern in style and substantial in structure, and stand as monuments to his thrift and enter-prise. The place is now highly improved, and the well tilled fields yield to him a good return for his care and labor. He votes with the Republican party, but has never sought or desired public office, preferring to give his attention exclusively to his business interests, in which he has met with signal success.
Mr. Smith was married in Chicago, Illinois, on the 23d of January, 1853, to Miss Nellie De Rider, who was born in Holland, February 17, 1837, and was a child of nine years when she came to America with her parents, Peater and Keatherine (Defust) DeRider. Her parents were natives of Holland, and on coming to this country located first in Buffalo, New York, but spent their last days in Rochester, New York, where the mother died in 1874, the father in 1889, both members of the Presbyterian church, as are also their children.
Mr. and Mrs. Smith are the parents of seven children, but William died in Murray county, February 11, 1890, at the age of thirty years and seven days. Those still living are Angus J., a farmer of Custer county, Nebraska; Charles F. , who resides in Texas; Frank H.. who is living in Montana; Mary J., wife of George W. Bishop; and Leroy and Ccdit, farmers of Murray county, Minnesota.

[Source: Memorial Record of SW Minnesota, published 1897 - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden]


William B. Stine

The office holders of a community are in more than one respect the representative men of that locality.  To their care is largely intrusted the welfare of their fellow men, and upon the faithful discharge of their duties depends in no small measure the advancement and best interests of the county in which they make their homes. William B. Stine is one of those representatives of Murray county, made so by the vote of the people, who in 1886 called him to the office of clerk of the district court. He is now serving his second term therein, and his reelection was a tribute to his ability, his prompt and faithful service and a testimonial of the regard in which he is held in the county. Mr. Stine was born in Greeneville, Tennessee, July 27, 1856, a son of Christian and Mary A. (Brown) Stine. His paternal grand-parents were John and Phoebe (Bower) Stine, and his maternal grandfather was William Brown, a native of Greene county, Tennessee. The latter wedded Nancy Kidwell, of the same county, who is now living in Kankakee, Illinois, with her daughter, Mrs. William Martin. The Brown family is of Irish origin, and the family was founded in America by ancestors from Ireland. The Stine family is German. The grandfather, John Stine, a man of fine physique and powerful build, died in 1882, at the extreme old age of one hundred and three years, having served eight years in the regular army and lost his right eye at the battle of New Orleans. Christian Stine, the father of our subject, was a tanner by occupation, and became a resident of Murray county, Minnesota, in 1883, locating in Lowville township, where he resided until his death, which occurred in 1893.

The efficient clerk of the district court of Murray county spent the days of his boyhood and youth in his parents' home, attending school through the winter season, while in the summer months he became familiar with the labors of field and meadow. He assisted his father until twenty years of age in the development of the home farm, and then learned telegraphy, which he followed as a vocation at various points until called to public office. He was elected in 1886, but did not enter upon the discharge of his duties until 1888. He then served for a term of four years, after which he was re-elected, and January, 1891, was appointed by the judge of the district court to fill a vacancy for one year, so that he is now the incumbent in the office. In addition to his official duties he does considerable business as a real-estate dealer and notary public, and has a good knowledge of law.

Mr. Stine gives his political support to the Republican party, is widely informed on the issues and questions which mark the differences between the political organizations, and has become prominent in the local affairs of his party. As an officer he merits the trust reposed in him, and as a business man he ranks among the leading citizens of Murray county.

Mr. Stine came to this county in November, 1880, and while serving as station agent was located at Hadley. There he formed the acquaintance of Miss Minnie Lowe, and on the 28th of May, 1882, this estimable lady became his wife.

[Source: Memorial Record of SW Minnesota, published 1897 - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden]


Benjamin Woolstencroft
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks Minnesota 1907, R.L. Polk & Co. St. Paul, MN; transcribed by Mary Kay Krogman

WOOLSTENCROFT Benjamin W, Slayton. Judge of probate. Born Feb 22, 1846 in Jefferson Barracks Mo, son of Benjamin and Mary A (Kerr) Woolstencroft. Married Dec 18, 1866 to Susan D Anscomb. Educated in common schools Clayton county Iowa and Northeastern Iowa Univ Fayette la. Raised on farm in Clayton county Ia; removed to Nobles county Minn 1867; engaged in civil engineering and surveying until failing health compelled him to retire. Private Co "L" 6th Iowa Cav 1862-64; county commissioner Nobles county Minn 1869-70; county surveyor Nobles county 6 years; Murray county 16 years. Pres School Board Fulda 10 years; pres council; recorder; chairman Republican County Central Committee; sec Republican County Central Committee; justice of the peace and assessor; judge of probate 1895 to date.


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