Banner County - Genealogy Trails



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One Divorce Case Breaks Record for County in Nebraska

Harrisburg, Nebraska, April 30. --  Persistent appeals on the part of Miss May Hyland, Chief of the State Bureau of Vital Statistics, for a report on divorces in Banner County for the year 1921, finally elected the following short and laconic reply from E. D. Wilson, County Clerk:

"We love our wives out here.  There were no divorces in Banner County in 1921.  I have written yo this fact several times in answer to your persistent call.  We cannot promise as much for the current year, however, as we have on solitary divorce case on the docket." 

Statistical records disclose that Banner County did not have a single divorce in 1919 or 1920.

The county is located in the far corner of the western Nebraska, bordering the Colorado line.

Tulsa World - May 5, 1922

    Lincoln, Nebraska, Virtuous; No Divorce in 5 years

    Lincoln, Nebraska, March 24. --  Reno, Nevada, attention, please!  Here is a county - Banner County, Nebraska  --  that hasn't had a single divorce case in five years.

    "I've written you four times telling you that we have no divorces to report," said a letter received today by the chief of the bureau of vital statistics from R. D. Wilson, the county's recorder.

    Mr. Wilson's explanation of the situation was simply enough.  "We love our wives' he said.

    Tulsa World - March 25, 1922

      Banner County Boasts

      Banner County, Nebraska, boasts that it has not had a divorce case in five years.

      "Banner" County is right.

      Times-Picayune - March 30, 1922

        Pro-Whiskers Club Formed

        Girls at Harrisburg, Nebraska, to Reject All Beardless Men

        Harrisburg, Nebraska --  A number of young society women of this western Nebraska town have formed a pro-whiskers society and have signed an agreement which binds them solemnly to discourage attentions from young, middle aged or old men who do not wear beards and not under any circumstances to marry men of any age who do not wear full beards.

        They read a newspaper story recently to the effect that the girls of another town had agreed not to permit men who wore beards to pay court to them.  The Harrisburg girls say that their sisters in the other town have assumed a wrong attitude toward the whiskers question and that they themselves have taken the correct and patriotic stand.

        They maintain stoutly that men with whiskers are handsomer and every way more acceptable as lovers, husbands and fathers than are men without them; that in earlier times it was almost the universal custom in this country for men to wear full beards and that such beards were then regarded as genuine ornaments, but that through ridicule the good old custom has been made obsolete.<

        They say that they have formed their society and signed an agreement not to encourage attentions from beardless men an don't in any event to marry men without full beards in order to reestablish the good old custom of wearing full beards.

        Washington Bee - March 2, 1907

        The Land of Opportunity   

        Millett’s Seed and Stock Farm

        Prosperity For Farmers

        In the extreme western part of Nebraska lies Banner County – a land of untold wealth and hidden riches.

        Thousands of acres of level land await the coming of the settler. The pioneers who blazed a path to Banner County have grown wealthy. Their effort have been crowned with success and serve as a beacon light for the farmers of the east.

        Farming in Banner County is not longer a game of chance. It has proved most profitable from every angle. Failures are unheard of and prosperity reigns supreme.

        Harrisburg, the county seat, is growing rapidly. New business houses are springing up and people are showing their faith in the county by erecting beautiful homes.

        Flowerfield, the newest town in Banner County, is making remarkable strides and will soon take its place as one of the leaders in Western Nebraska.

        What the farmers of Banner County have accomplished can be duplicated by others. There is room here for thousands of honest, hard-working men who are willing to grow with this wonderful country.

        The land is cheap here, but it is only a question of time before it will begin to increase by leaps and bounds. it has been steadily advancing, due to the increased demand and bumper crops. Are you going to wait or will you take advantage of the wonderful opportunity that exists today?

        You farmers who are paying rent on high-priced land in the east—do you realize that your money will buy a farm of your own in Banner Country? Are you going to keep on being a renter all your life? Have you no ambition to become independent—to try the foundation for a life of real happiness? Why not make today the turning point in your career? Take the step which will insure case and comfort in our declining days!

        For further information regarding the agricultural resources of Banner County, write to:

        G. A. Jones, Harrisburg, Nebraska or G. A. Millett, Flowerfield, Nebraska.

        Friday, November 23, 1917
        Omaha World Herald (Omaha, NE)

        Banner County’s Banner Crops   

        Special Dispatch to the World Herald

        Harrisburg, Nebraska, June 18.—Crop conditions for Banner County were never better than at the present time, although about two weeks late. The stand of corn is good and all kinds of small grain are looking fine. The Hessian fly has made its appearance in several places, but no fears are entertained that will greatly dafunge crops. Grass on the range is the best in years, and early shipments of cattle will be made.

        Harrisburg will celebrate the Fourth in royal style, and a general good time is anticipated.

        Mrs. Mamie Fadlen tendered her resignation as county superintendent, and the commissioners will consider the appointment of her successor at their next meeting.

        The annual roundup for Banner County was concluded last week and about fifty head of cattle were brought in by the different ranchmen.

        Monday, June 19, 1905
        Omaha World Herald (Omaha, NE)

          Pioneers Learn They Spent 60 Years Atop Big Oil Pool     

          Harrisburg, Nebraska—Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Downer, members of pioneer Nebraska families, discovered last week they have spent nearly a lifetime sitting on top of an oil pool.

          They saw the oil spout high in the air Tuesday when drillers tapped the pool on their land 1 1/2 miles east of Harrisburg.

          A test of the Downer No. 1 well expected the first part of this week, R. G. Bechtel, division production superintendent of Standolind Company, which will operate the well, said oil and gas separators must be set up and provisions made for oil storage. Casting was being set and cementing operations started the end of the week.

          The well which spewed oil over the prairie indicated that it may be one of the best discovered thus far in Western Nebraska and may open up a new area for development.

          Drillers found oil in the Muddy Sand at 5,9880 feet. Production may top eight hundred barrels a day. When the drill stem was being pulled out gas pressure blew out a black plume of oil that reached nearly to the top of the 135 foot derrick.

          The Downers asserted they had no idea what they would do with their new wealth.

          “We just hadn’t counted on it too much, so we didn’t really make any plans,” said Mrs. Downer.

          As owners of the mineral rights, they will receive one-eight of all the oil and gas produced from wells on their land. They also will share in the 15 thousand dollar bonus if the discovery well produces 50 barrels a day for 30 consecutive days. Nebraska law provides the bonus for the first producing well in any county.

          Mr. Downer, 64, came to Banner County July 4, 1889. His father, the late A. G. Downer, homesteaded her in 1888 and operated a general store in Harrisburg until 1907.

          Mrs. Downer, 59, was born in Banner County about eight miles west of Harrisburg. Her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Wayne, were among the first resident of Banner County.

          Mr. and Mrs. Downer were married 35 years ago and have lived all of that time at the southeast corner of Harrisburg. They have watched the tiny county seat dwindle from a fairly good sized prairie town during the days of the early land rush to a population of 90.

          Mr. Downer homesteaded the section just east of where they now live and has gradually added to his holdings. At present he owns 3,600 acres in a solid block—about seven hundred acres of its under cultivation. He has a herd of Herefords on the range land.

          Residents of Harrisburg are anxiously awaiting word of production and the possible development of a new field. The new well is about 2 ½ miles northwest of Stanolind’s State No. 1 Lovercheck, which was abandoned last month as a dry hole after being drilled to 6,659 feet.

          Stanolind had it drillers start on the Downer well November 27, just ahead of the deadline to keep its agreement for working the Mead block which covers more than 12,500 acres northeast of Harrisburg.

          The well is in the exact center of Banner County. The new discovery is expected to set off a flurry of drilling in the county. A test probably will be made on the farm of H. A. Downer of Gering, brother of W. W., who has the section adjoining on the east.

          The oil recovered was reported to be a good grade of 38 gravity crude.

          Mr. Downer got to see the well blow in. He arrived at the drilling site 15 minutes earlier and drillers advised him to move his car back.

          Mrs. Downer missed being present. She and a daughter-in-law, Mrs. Robert, were attending a missionary meeting.

          Sunday, January 21, 1951
          Omaha World Herald (Omaha, Nebraska)