Deuel County - Genealogy Trails

 

 

 

 Biographies


     

    Robert A. Day

    Harry Porter Deuel

    Gordon Ewing Thompson

    Riley Ford   

    Henry C. Hatterman   

    William G. Hatterman   

    Gotleib C, Manser  

    William G. Melton   

    August G. Newman   

    Carl Pidgeon    

    James D. Pindell   

    George E. Richardson   

    Agnew R. Ryburn     

    Sarah Rosella Stalnaker   

    John C. Steward   

    Nicolas E. Zehr   

    Adam H. Zimmerman   

     

     

     

     

     

    Robert A. Day

    Was born in Brown County, Ohio, March 5, 1867.

    At the age of seventeen he came to Butler County, Nebraska, and two years later went to Deuel County, then a part of Cheyenne County.

    He received his education in the public scohols of Ohio and aside from his official duties is interested in farming and stock raising.

    Mr. Day is a Democrat and served two terms as County Clerk and Clerk of the District Court of Deuel County.

    In December, 1886, he homesteaded on the North Platte Valley.

    In 1897 he was married to Miss Viola Empson of Vallonia, Jackson County, Indiana.

    Illustrated History of Nebraska - From The Earliest Explorations to the Present Time with Portraits, Maps, and Tables, Vol. III - 1913


    Harry Porter Deuel

    Was born in Monroe County, New York, December 11, 1836.

    He was educated in public schools and attended Lombard University, in Galesburg, Illinois.  He worked on his father's farm until November 1859. He then moved to Nebraska.

    He became an agent for K.C. St. J & C. B Railroad.  When the B & M Railroad was completed into Omaha, he became the agent, until 1888.

    He them became the Omaha City Passenger Agent for the Union Pacific Railroad.  He was with the Union Pacific Railroad until 1896, when he resigned and became Superintendent of the Burlington Station in Omaha.

    He remained Superintendent until 1901 when he was elected to the office of Registrar of Deeds.

    He was active in the social circles, was prominent in the Masonic work for over 50 years.  He was Grand Master of the Nebraska Grand Lodge in 1869.  He attained the highest degree of Masonry. He also belonged to other orders.

    Deuel County is named in honor of Harry Porter Deuel (1836-1914), a pioneer citizen of Omaha, Nebraska.

    Illustrated History of Nebraska - From The Earliest Explorations to the Present Time with Portraits, Maps, and Tables, Vol. III - 1913


    Gordon Ewing Thompson

    Of Big Springs, Nebraska, was born August 26, 1847, in Mercer County, Pennsylvania, son of Alexander and Annie (Love) Thompson.

    In 1878 he came to Bennett, Colorado, and engaged in the sheep business.  

    In November, 1880, he went to Big Springs, Nebraska, and from 1884 until 1887 settled about five hundred people on government land in Cheyenne, Keith, and Perkins Counties.

    In 1884 he homsteaded the townsite of Big Springs, Nebraska.

    In later yers he has been engaged in raising standard bred horses.

    Mr. Thompson is a republican and served as the second sheriff of Deuel County, 1896-1897.

    Illustrated History of Nebraska - From The Earliest Explorations to the Present Time with Portraits, Maps, and Tables, Vol. III - 1913 


    Riley Ford
       

    Early settler, well known ranchman and today a member of the retired colony of Big Springs, is one of the few men today who knew and associated with the cowboys who had charge of the great herds of cattle that ranged over the Panhandle in the early eighties. He was born in Rockford,Illinois, June 15, 1862, the son of Cebra and Harriet (Gates) Ford, the former a native of Ireland while the mother was born in France. Mr. Ford came to the United States to engage in farming; settled first in Ohio, then Illinois and from that state moved to Iowa in 1865. Mrs. Ford died there in 1872, and her husband in 1892. He was a general farmer, a Republican in politics but never held office. There were four children in the family but Riley, of this review, is the only one living. He received his education in the public schools of Iowa and when old enough determined to have a farm of his own. Learning that there was plenty of cheap land in the Panhandle he came here in 1885, locating in Deuel county in June of that year. The trip was made across the country in true pioneer style in a wagon drawn by horses, living in the covered wagon on the way. Locating on a homestead five miles south of Big Springs, Mr. Ford at once erected the usual frontier home a sod house a sod stable and was ready for his family when they come five months later. At that time there was only one habitation between Big Springs and Julesburg, the land being unbroken prairie. The family was discouraged many times due to the poor crops so many years from drought and at first they had to haul water over two miles for family use and the stock. However, they could not sell, stuck it out and in the end won out with a comfortable fortune. Settlers made the best of the situation in those days; held parties in the sod houses and Mr. Ford says had a better time than people do today. He has seen the many changes in Deuel county which today is rich farm land well settled, and has taken his part in this development. During the early days Mr. Ford made friends of the cow-boys who were with the great cattle outhts and they often gave the family meat when they butchered. Accepting an invitation from one outfit to go to Julesburg with them he had an adventurous time as they shot up the town, but the foreman paid all damages and all had a good time. They put on an imprompteau "Wild West Show" with a colored man doing the riding in the dark on a rainy night and all the spectators saw was the glow of the point of the cigar in his mouth as the horse bucked. In the spring of 1919, Mr. Ford sold his farm land and retired from active life and now makes his home in Big Springs. He made a comfortable fortune from land that was thought worthless and is enjoying the sunset years of life.

    May 28, 1882, Mr. Ford married Miss E. Miller, the daughter of John and Anna Miller, at Decorah, Iowa, and they became the parents of four children: Hattie, the wife of Harry Jones, of Lawrence, Wyoming; Charles, on the home place; Claude of South Port, North Carolina, just mustered out of government service and John, of Big Springs. Mr. Ford is a Republican and attends the Methodist church.

    Source: History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties. A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio



    Henry C. Hatterman
      

    Is a native son of Deuel county and one of the successful farmers of this district who has grown up in the west and made good though he took part in many frontier privations and hardships.  Mr. Hatterman was born May 20, 1888, on the farm where he now resides in section 6-14-41.  He is the son of Anton W. and Johanna H. (Claner) Hatterman, both natives of Germany who came to the United States in 1877.  They settled first in Iowa and Mrs. Hatterman tells of crossing the Mississippi river in boats as there were no bridges near their home.  A year later the family came to Nebraska, locating in York county, near Waco and remained there ten years.  In March, 1888, Mr. Hatterman brought his family to the Panhandle and filed on the homestead where the son Henry now lives.  Here the Hattermans passed through all the hardships and privations incident to life on the frontier; the father worked in order to supply his family with the necessities of life, many times receiving only twenty-five cents a day.  Conditions were bad, crop failures frequent, work was hard to get and the large family had to be fed.  The first team Mr. Hatterman used was a yoke of oxen and they were also used to haul water for family use and stock.  Much of the time the trip was twelve miles, but later Mr. Hatterman made a cistern in a draw where the rain collected and this helped out on the water supply.  Butter and eggs were exchanged for work.  Hard work undermined the father's health and he died in 1909.  The mother still lives with her son.  There were six children in the family, of whom five are living: Edward and William of Deuel county; Sens, the wife of John Curley of Brule, Nebraska; Tona, the wife of James Fenwick, of Keith county; and Henry of this review.  The father was a Democrat and in his early life belonged to the Lutheran church but he and his wife later joined the Methodist denomination.  Henry Hatterman received all the educational advantages afforded in this locality when he was a boy, which was not much.  As soon as he was old enough he began to work on the farm.  While still a lad he was sent to the canyons to gather wood for the home and once after he had gather more than he could load, left the rest for another trip and on his return found that someone had stolen it.  While the father was working on the railroad to earn money for supplies the boys carried on the farm work as best they could.  As Mr. Hatterman grew older he assumed more and more of the work of the farm and when his father died took entire charge of the place and has gained a high reputation as a progressive and prosperous farmer.  February 25, 1914, Mr. Hatterman married Miss Effie C. Stewart, the daughter of August and Martha (Coates) Stewart, pioneer settlers of Deuel county, living near Lodgepole, and three children have been born to the union:  Floyd A., and Eloyd A., twins and Bertha I.  Mr. Hatterman is a Democrat and for two years has served as treasurer of the school board of his district.

    Source: History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    William G. Hatterman   

    One of the prosperous farmers of the Big Springs district, is a native born son of York county, this state, born December 2, 1880, the son of Anton and Minnie Hatterman, who came to Deuel county when the boy was only six months old. William lived at home, attended the public schools for his education and though the Oregon Trail had been abandoned when his family came here he recalls finding log chains, parts of oxen yokes, Indian beads, arrows and other relics of the early days. The wind and weather had not then destroyed the deeply rutted tracks of the trail. After leaving home Mr. Hatterman worked on farms near Lexington four years and then went to Cherry county where he found employment on the ranches. February 16, 1905, he married at Day Post Office, Miss Martha Sonnenberg, the daughter of Henry P. and Caroline (Lewine) Sonnenberg, natives of Germany who came to Deuel county in the late 80's where they farmed but now live near Sterling, Colorado. Three children have been born to this union; Joseph, Roy, and Vera, all at home.

    Mr. and Mrs. Hatterman live on the homestead on which Mrs. Hatterman filed and proved up. She made the thirteenth person to file on this same piece of land, all the others failed to prove up, grew discouraged and gave up. Conditions were very discouraging in the early days for there had been droughts; there was no work to be obtained as many men were trying to get jobs; then a few years came with good crops followed by the poor years of the early 90's, but the Hattermans retained their land and today it is worth nearly a hundred dollars an acre. The change in weather conditions, the general raise in land values and the improvements on the farm have placed them in easy circumstances. Today Mr. and Mrs. Hatterman own and operate three hundred and twenty acres of land; for many years they raised cattle but of late have devoted more attention to scientific farming, using the latest machinery and modern methods. Today Mr. Hatterman has only well bred Hereford cattle and Red Jersey hogs. Since his marriage he says that he and his wife had few of the hardships to contend with of the early days. They then had to go for water from a mile and a half to six miles and this continued eighteen years as there was only one well in the vicinity, W. W. Waterman's and a spring at Ash Hollow. Mrs. Hatterman's family lived in Gage county but decided to come west and take up a homestead, locating in Lincoln county. They made the trip in true pioneer style, driving across country in the spring of 1890, using two cows to draw their wagon with two yearling calves on leads. The cows were hitched with the usual yoke for oxen. On reaching the homestead near Maxwell, the family was practically out of money and breaking the sod was slow work, only a little being put under cultivation each year. As a result they suffered privations as crops were poor some years. Finally the father secured horses to work and then farming became easier. When they drove through to Deuel county, horses were used and the family lived on the land here for which they had traded until they sold out and went to Colorado. Mrs. Hatterman and her older sister had to help break the land and do other work on the farm so that she has experienced all the privations and hardships of frontier life to the full. Today Mr. and Mrs. Hatterman are well fixed with a good productive farm. Mr. Hatterman is independent in his political views, has been treasurer of his school district for the past fourteen years, is a member of the Methodist Church at Day, and also belongs to the Farmers Union at Big Springs, holding stock in the Farmers Elevator and Farmers Store. He is a substantial and reliable business man of progressive methods and ideas.

    Source: History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    Gotleib C. Manser    

    Pioneer settler and well known business man of Big Springs, is one of the essentially self made men of the Panhandle who came here with little but the determination to succeed and two willing hands with which he worked, and he has made good. Today, he is one of the most substantial men of the community and has the distinction of being the first blacksmith of Big Springs. Mr. Manser was born in Germany, December 24, 1860, the son of Jacob and Rosina (Aleister) Manser, both natives of that land. The father was a blacksmith in his native land who came with his family to the United States in 1886; settled in Amherst, Colorado, where he engaged in business at his trade. The mother died there in 1911 and the father in 1913, leaving a family of nine children, but Gotlieb is the only one living in the Panhandle. He was educated in the public schools of Germany and also learned the blacksmith's trade from his father. Mr. Manser came to this country ahead of the rest of the family, sailing from Europe in 1882. Soon after reaching our shores he located in York county, Nebraska, where he engaged in business as a blacksmith two years before coming to Deuel county to file on a homestead northeast of Big Springs in Keith county, but lived their only two years as he came to Big Springs in 1886 and opened a blacksmith shop, the first in the town. For eight years Mr. Manser carried on this business then moved back to his farm to engage in agricultural industries for nearly a quarter of a century.  He was sober, industrious, not afraid of hard work and by these qualities became a successful rancher. When he came Mr. Manser says that all he had was his two bare hands and today he has two sections well improved. He has made his way independently, is essentially self-made by steady work, his native ability and perseverance and is still a young man in years.  At first he did not do much farming as the country was not yet adapted to that but raised cattle and fed some, having at one time over a hundred head. Since he retired from the land his sons have charge of the farm. Mr. Manser recounts that at first the settlers had no wood and burned buffalo chips; wagons were the only means of transportation and for three years he hauled water six miles for family and stock, paying five cents a barrel for it. Since returning to town Mr. Manser has again turned to his trade as he feels he is too young to give up all active life. He owns a fine home in Big Springs.

    February 2, 1888, Mr. Manser was united in marriage with Miss Anna Miller, the daughter of John and Anna Miller, pioneer settlers of Deuel county, and seven children have been born to the union: Otto, at the home place; Charles, married, lives on a home farm; Tillie, Emma, Lillian, Bennie and Mattie all at home.

    Mr. Manser is a Republican and a member of the Methodist church. He is a progressive man in his business and ever ready to help any movement for the development of his community and county.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    William G. Melton    

    One of the earliest settlers of the Lodgepole district and well known stockman has lived in the Panhandle for more than twenty years, passed through all the hardships and trials of frontier life and today with his brothers is one of the prominent and prosperous ranchmen of western Nebraska. He was born in Harrison county, Indiana, October 20, 1869, the son of James H. and Catharine (Snyder) Melton, both natives of this same county. The father was a general farmer who died in Indiana in 1877. He was a prominent man in his community, belonged to the Methodist church and was a Republican. There were eight children in the Melton family, of whom four are living: Harvey B., Jonathan K., George L., of York, Nebraska, and William of this review, who received his early education in Indiana and later in the public schools of York, Nebraska, as he came west with his brother and sister-in-law in 1878, because of poor health. Mr. Melton lived in York until 1881, before returning to Indiana for three years. In 1884, he came back, remained in York county a short time before taking up a homestead in Deuel county in December, 1890. This land was near Lodgepole and he still owns the original tract. Later he purchased his present farm in section 14-14-46, where he lives with his brothers, Harry and Jonathan. For many years the Melton brothers have raised cattle and dealt in live stock. They first bought short horn cattle but saw that high grade animals paid the best and in later years have changed to Herefords, keeping as good a grade as is to be found in this section of the country. Starting with only thirty head, Mr. Melon had more than five hundred head when he sold out in 1907, with a hundred and thirty head of calves. A nephew now has the active work of the farm in hand but Mr. Melton supervises the management. They specialize in general farming and have but thirty head of cattle. The six hundred acres are cultivated, all the brothers helping in the work of looking after various agricultural branches. The brothers together own about four sections near Lodgepole, using the latest methods in farming as well as modern equipment in machinery and buildings. Mr. Melton is a Republican. He and his brothers are the oldest settlers in this locality and in the early days they tell of using all the land for a general range, fencing only that used for crops. Land sold then for a dollar an acre and many times they felt it was not worth the taxes, could never be farmer and Mr. Melton once remarked that he was paying "good money for bad land," and today it is very valuable.

    Mr. Melton and his brothers are of high standing in the community, being regarded as some of the most substantial men in Deuel county. Mr. Melton is a member of the Masonic order, having held nearly all the offices in his lodge.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.


    August G. Newman    

    A member of the retired colony of Chappell, who has spent more than forty years in the Panhandle and made many warm friends in Deuel county, was born in Waukesha county, Wisconsin, November 29, 1854, being of German extraction, as both parents were born in the German Empire and subsequently came to the United States. The boy was educated in the public schools and worked on his father's farm until he started in life for himself in 1878. That year Mr. Newman came to Nebraska and bought a ranch near Lodgepole where he raised sheep for eight years, four years of that time he lived entirely alone, camping out with his herds both winter and summer. In 1886, he bought twenty-six hundred acres of land southeast of Chappell and devoted his time to raising horses and cattle, in which enterprise he met with success. Many excellent improvements were made on the place, while the ranch had a naturally beautiful location on Lodgepole creek. Trees were planted and the Newman ranch was known throughout this section. Operating the place until 1893, Mr. Newman then moved to Chappell, becoming the owner and manager of the Johnson House, a hotel which he operated thirteen years, during which time he became very popular with the people of the town and the traveling public.

    In 1889, occurred the marriage of Mr. Newman and Miss Mary Barrett, the daughter of Harry and Jane (Barchard) Barrett, the former a well known railroad man having charge of the yards at North Platte, where he located on coming to Nebraska from Missouri in 1866. The Barretts later moved to Lodgepole and died there. Mrs. Newman died in 1917, leaving four children; Guy C, of Chappell; Grace A., the wife of John Burgstrum of Chappell; Harry C, of Omaha, and Mary B. at home with her father.

    Mr. Newman has never disposed of all his real estate holdings and is still the owner of a fine ranch of nineteen hundred and twenty acre. He is a Republican in politics, has taken an active part in the community life, serving as commissioner of Cheyenne county from 1885 to 1887, and later filled the same office in Deuel county. Being public spirited and progressive he assisted in establishing several schools in his locality and held important school offices, both in county and city. Mr. Newman came here when the country was practically virgin prairie and has not alone viewed the changes but partaken in the development of this section. He assisted in the partition of old Cheyenne county into six other counties; for when he came to the Panhandle there were no towns between North Platte and Sidney, while Chappell had only one house and the section house, so that he has witnessed the opening up of one of the finest sections of the country; seen villages and towns of this county platted and settled up, which few in the future will ever again witness. Mr. Newman is a charter member of the Masonic lodge.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    Carl Pidgeon    

    One of Deuel county's most progressive and prosperous farmers and stockmen, is a native son, born here December 31, 1893, the son of Lincoln W., and Frances (Pindell) Pidgeon. The father was a school teacher who had studied for the ministry but was never ordained. He also took a law course and is now a well known lawyer in Sumner, Nebraska. The mother died in 1910. There were the following children in the Pidgeon family: Mable, wife of Maurice Johnson, of Deuel county; Guy, Paul, Carl, of this review, all of Deuel county, and Roy, killed by a horse in 1908. The Pidgeon family came to the Panhandle in 1890 and have lived in Nebraska ever since.

    Carl Pidgeon received his educational advantages in the public schools of this county and when his schooling was finished he engaged in farming, a vocation which he still follows. Meeting with success in his business, Mr. Pidgeon has from time to time increased his original holdings until today he is the owner of nine hundred acres of fine arable land. Eight hundred he farms, using the other hundred as range for cattle. For many years he dealt extensively in cattle but for the past three years he has devoted more land to intensive farming and finds that it pays. With a brother, Mr. Pidgeon owns a threshing outfit which they run in Deuel county and the surrounding country. The Pidgeon farm has modern buildings and equipment, the latest machinery and a fine farm home.

    On May 22, 1913, Mr. Pidgeon married Miss Elsie Ward at Chappell, the daughter of Jennie L. (Johnson) and Cyrus J. Ward, the former lives in Chappell while Mr. Ward resides at Elm Creek. Three children have been born to this union: Francis, Vera and Doris. Mr. Pidgeon is a Republican, while his wife is a member of the Methodist Church. He is also a stockholder in the Farmers Elevator of Julesburg, and a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and with his wife belongs to the Rebecca Lodge.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    James D. Pindell    

    A member of one of the old pioneer families of the Panhandle and today one of its progressive and prosperous farmers, was born in Bonaparte, Iowa, October 15, 1869, the son of Presley and Mary (Fox) Pindell, the former born in Brown county, Ohio, in 1834, died in 1916, the mother was born in Iowa in 1839 and died in 1915. The father was a wagon maker by trade, who came with his family to Nebraska in the fall of 1882, settled first in York county but came to Deuel county in the spring of 1885, and took up a homestead on section 22-14-43. Later he filed on a Kincaid claim where his son James now lives. Mr. Pindell was a Democrat but never held office. Both he and his wife were members of the Baptist church. The Pindell family drove across country to their new home with a span of mules and a wagon; the second year all the horses were lost when James and a brother went to Ash Hollow for wood and on the way home the brother had a sun stroke, fell from the wagon and the mules ran away. This was a serious loss as water had to be hauled more than three miles. Finally a well was dug; started on Christmas Day and finished in April. The family first lived in a tent but the wind was so strong it always was dangerous and a dug out was built, the roof of that was blown off and then a frame home took its place. Denver Junction was the nearest town, fifteen miles away, and there was only one house in that distance. Since then, when the town consisted of a few houses, a store and station, the name has been changed to Julesburg. Six children made up the Pindell family of whom four are living: Frances, deceased; Charles, deceased; Albert, of Cheyenne, Wyoming; Nellie, of North Loupe, Nebraska; James, and George of Big Springs.
    Mr. Pindell was educated in the publics schools of Iowa and Nebraska; he accompanied his parents to Deuel county in 1885, and when old enough took up a homestead in section 28 where he lived until he sold and moved to Big Springs to engage in drilling wells, a vocation he followed ten years. Buying his father's farm, Mr. Pindell returned to agricultural pursuits and has become one of the well known farmers here.

    February 21, 1906, Mr. Pindell married Miss Pearl Nelson, daughter of Nels and Rosetta (Van Aken) Nelson, residents of Big Springs and have two living children; Charles and Frances.

    Mr. Pindell is an Independent Democrat in politics; he and his wife attend the Presbyterian Church of which she is a member. For some years Mr. Pindell has been a member of the Farmers Union and is one of the progressive farmers and stockmen who is progressive in ideas and methods.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.


    George E. Richardson    

    One of the early settlers of Big Springs district who came here when this country was unbroken prairie and has experienced all the vicissitudes incident to life on the frontier and made good as a rancher, is an Englishman, born in Lincolnshire, January 13, 1861, the son of George and Annie (Jackson) Richardson, both natives of England where the father was a farmer and veterinary. The family came to the United States in 1873; settled near York, Nebraska, where the elder Richardson took a homestead and passed the remainder of his days on the farm. He died in 1899. The mother passed away in 1875, leaving a family of three children: Arthur, of York, Nebraska; George of this review, and Herbert of Hoh, Nebraska.

    George Richardson was educated in the common schools of England until he was twelve years of age then accompanied his parents to their home in the United States. He remained at home until his twenty-second year then filed on a homestead ten miles southeast of Big Springs in Keith county. This county was later divided and the subdivision called Perkins county, where Mr. Richardson lived until 1895, when he moved near the town of Big Springs. In 1916, he retired from active participation in business and since then has made his home in Big Springs. He sold out his original homestead, but still owns an irrigated farm near the city and a home in the town. When Mr. Richardson came to this section in 1884, he drove across the country with a yoke of oxen, following along the right of way of the Union Pacific Railroad. As teams became stuck in the mud some other traveller would help pull them out, thus Mr. Richardson helped others and they in turn assisted in pulling his wagon from some mud holes. His equipment consisted of a cow, plow and a few supplies. For some time, he made money breaking land for other men and secured capital for a start. The second year he had a good crop of corn but range cattle broke into his fields and ate it all. With a neighbor he cut hay with a scythe there were no mowers then and had to watch the hay stacks to see that range cattle did not break the fences and eat it too. There were some wild horses, a few buffaloes on Frenchman's creek and numbers of coyotes in this section then and Mr. Richardson killed many of the latter. He is a Democrat in politics, but took no active part in political life for many years; has been one of the best known ranchmen in the Big Springs section where he is considered one of the substantial and prosperous fanners who is progressive in his ideas and methods.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    Agnew R. Ryburn    

    One of the well known hotel owners and operators of Big Springs, where he has been in business for more than a decade, is a pioneer settler and ranchman of Deuel county who has taken a prominent part in the opening up and settlement of this section of the Panhandle. He was born in Fayette county, Indiana, November 20, 1856, the son of John and Diantha (Gray) Ryburn, the former a native of Virginia, the latter of Indiana. They were the parents of five children but Agnew is the only one in western Nebraska. The father was a farmer who located in Indiana when a boy, near Brookfield; later bought land near Bushville where he died in 1872. The mother is still living at the advanced age of eighty-nine years. Mr. Ryburn was a prominent man in Indiana, engaged in general farming and stock-raising; was a Republican and a member of the United Presbyterian church.

    Agnew Ryburn was educated in the public schools of Indiana; his father was injured when the boy was fifteen years old and he took charge of the home farm and has been in business for himself since that time. In January, 1876, Mr. Ryburn married Miss Ella M. Murray, at Oxford, Ohio, and they became the parents of five children; the oldest is deceased; Cora, the wife of Charles Morrow, lives in Indiana; Carthrine, the wife of Earl Hinchman also lives in Indiana; Murray, of Wyoming, and Hinsey of Tacoma, Washington. Mr. Ryburn came to Deuel county in the fall of 1886, on a visit and remained. The family followed him in 1889. At first he worked for the State Line Horse Ranch, as foreman, but his wife and oldest daughter died the first year and after a few years Mr. Ryburn became associated with Frank Doran. In January, 1900, he bought the hotel in Big Springs which he has since operated. During this time he has made many warm friends and gained a high standing in the community Mr. Ryburn was clerk of the election board when Deuel county voted for the county seat; the rivalry between Big Springs and Chapell. The first election was fraudulent and everyone knew it as thousands of votes were cast when there were not more than five hundred voters. The case was contested and Mr. Ryburn called to the stand; an effort was made to place the blame on him but he cleverly evaded many questions. Later another election was held and Chappell was chosen as the seat of justice. Mr. Ryburn says he will never forget the many interesting incidents created by this affair and now laughs about them. He lived in the Panhandle at the time when the last of the Texas range cattle were driven through and since that time cattle have been raised on the ranches. Big Springs at that time was known as Lone Tree, later the name was changed. The great cattle trail crossed the river at this point splitting up on top of the table land north of town so that he has seen all the marvelous changes from the old trail days, and the old pioneers can hardly realize it is the same country. Mr. Ryburn has been a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows since he was twenty-one years of age and filled all chairs.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    Sarah Rosella Stalnaker   

    Widow of the late Charles Stalnaker, came to Nebraska in the early days and suffered all the hardships and privations incident to life on the frontier and her reminiscences of that period are interesting. She was born in Jasper county, Iowa, August 16, 1866, the daughter of James R. and Rachael (Cline) Thomas, both natives of Illinois, who had a family of ten children: Warren A., of Washington; Sarah of this review; Anna, deceased; James A., lives in Canada; Ira E., of Oregon; Alice, of Seattle, Washington; William Charles, deceased; Nora, the wife of George Givens, of Shaw, Oregon, and two deceased. Mr. Thomas was a farmer who owned and operated a threshing outfit for many years, in Hamilton county, Nebraska. He served as a private in Company D, One Hundred and fifteenth Illinois Infantry during the Civil War and was very ill; after his discharge from the army in 1865, he moved to Iowa and in 1869, to Hamilton county where the family lived sixteen years. Later Mr. Thomas moved to Dundy county, Nebraska, to the state of Oregon and Ellensburg, Washington, where he and his wife died. Mr. Thomas was a Republican, a member of the Grand Army of the Republic and the Woodmen, while he and his wife were members of the Christian church.

    Sarah Thomas Stalnaker was educated in the public schools of Hamilton county, where she came with her parents when four years of age. Her father took up a homestead near Marquette and there she experienced many frontier adventures. She well remembers the trip overland from Iowa, as they drove through with a span of mules, eight cows and lived in their covered wagon on the way. The first home was a dugout which soon fell in from rain; they then tried a tent and it blew over; then a cave was found and later a frame house was built. Indians were frequent visitors and the children were afraid at first but learned they were friendly. Water had to be hauled four miles; Central City, known then as Lone Tree, was nine miles north of Marquette and it was from that town that the lumber for the home had to be carried by wagon, fording the river, as there were no bridges. Crops were poor the first years and the family suffered from want of food, provisions and even clothes. Mrs. Stalnaker was much with her father in those days. When the railroad was built through near them the mother boarded some of the men for money to keep the family. Mrs. Stalnaker herded cattle where the present village of Marquette is and tells of the terrible prairie fire she saw there when the flames were sixty feet high.

    When Sarah Rosella Thomas was eighteen years old she married Charles Stalnaker, on September 30, 1884; he was the son of Samuel and Elizabeth (Ryan) Stalnaker, residents of Hamilton county, now deceased.

    Mrs. Stalnaker lived in Hamilton county forty-seven years and has seen all the marvelous changes that have taken place in this state covering nearly half a century. She became the mother of seven children, two of whom died in infancy: Cleveland, deceased; Grace, the wife of Ira Williams of Deuel county; Sylvia, the wife of Grover Moist, of Crawford, Nebraska; Vancil and Wilma, both at home. Mr. Stalnaker died November 23, 1913, and soon afterward Mrs. Stalnaker came to Deuel county with the two youngest children. She bought land seven miles north of Chappell where they ran a farm until the son enlisted in the many during the World War. Mrs. Stalnaker sold out to move to Chappell where she bought a home and building lots but recently traded the lots for a quarter section of land in Wyoming. She is a fine woman of great ability and resource; has played her part in the development of Nebraska and is an ardent worker in the Methodist church while the children belong to the United Brethren church. For years she has been affiliated with the Royal Neighbors.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    John C. Steward   

    One of the early settlers of Deuel county and today one of the most successful and prosperous farmers of this section, was born in Henry county, Illinois, September 4, 1859, the son of Martin and Mary (Woodruff) Steward, natives of New York. The father was a farmer who came to Illinois and at the outbreak of the Civil War volunteered, serving in the One Hundred and Twelfth Illinois Infantry from 1861 to 1864. In 1884, Mr. Steward came to Nebraska, locating in Dawson county, then homesteaded five miles northwest of Big Springs, where the family lived until his death. Mrs. Stewart later sold that place and took a homestead as a widow; proved up but later married a minister from Iowa, I. M. Flyng, and now lives in Chappell. There were eight children in the family, of whom five are living, but John, of this sketch, is the only one in Deuel county. Mrs. Steward was a member of the Methodist church, while her husband was a Republican in politics.

    John Steward was educated in the public schools of Illinois and was married in Bureau county, that state, on December 17, 1882, to Miss Sarah M. Estabrook the daughter of David and Mary (Ferrell) Estabrook, both New Englanders by birth. Ten children were born to this union, of whom seven are living: Alice, the wife of Frank Thomas of Lexington, Nebraska; Blanche, the wife of Loren D. Root, of Sedgwick, Colorado; Jesse, deceased; Archie, who lives on the home farm; Gertrude, the wife of John Ford, of Big Springs; Pearl, deceased; Clarence L., at home; Ruba, Ruth and David M.

    Mr. Steward came to Deuel county in 1884, and took a claim, the northwest quarter of section 34-15-43 which he sold in 1903, and bought the land where he now lives, as he foresaw the great future of irrigated land and purchased what could be watered. Since that time he has been engaged in general farming and stock raising. Mr. Steward is a self-made man, having had little when he came into the Panhandle but the determination to succeed; for at that time it was necessary to haul wood from the canyons of the Platte. He was near the famous California Trail and saw the early prairie schooners let down the steep hills with windlasses. One year he worked his land with an ox team, then purchased a pony horse team but today has the most modern machinery obtainable. Mr. Steward has specialized of late years in the breeding of full blooded Belgian horses, in which line he has met with gratifying success. He is a Republican, has served as assessor and road overseer of his district and is one of the substantial men of his community.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



    Nicholas E. Zehr   

    The owner-manager of a popular barber shop of Chappell, was born in Livingston county, Illinois, March 30, 1871, the son of Christian and Catharine (Roth) Zehr, the former a native of Alsace-Lorraine, (France) while the mother was born in Ohio. The father was a farmer who came to the United States in 1856, locating first in Illinois but in 1880, he came to Nebraska, settled in Seward county where he lived until his death in 1907. Mrs. Zehr returned to Illinois after the death of her husband, where she resided until she died in 1910. Mr. Zehr was a Democrat and both he and his wife were members of the Mennonite church. There were thirteen children in the family but Nicholas is the only one in this locality, a brother Joseph, lives in Arthur county.

    Mr. Zehr was educated in the Public schools of Seward county and recalls the great blizzard of 1888, when he and the teacher helped many of the pupils to get home and even then some were forced to stay in the school house all night. In 1893, he came to Deuel county, beginning to work on a farm in March, remained engaged in that work several years and then accepted a position with Wertz Brothers on the ranch. Five years later Mr. Zehr came to Chappell to work for them in a hardware store and was associated with this business until the Wertz Brothers sold out in 1908. Soon after this he bought a barber shop where he has been engaged in business to the present time. Mr. Zehr has made many friends in Chappell due to his courtesy and kindness, has built up a good business and today is regarded as one of the reliable and substantial men of the town.

    November 9, 1893, Mr. Zehr married Miss Nancy Roth, at Chappell, the daughter of Jacob and Lydia (Stutzman) Roth, pioneer settlers of Deuel county. Mr. Roth now lives at Nampa, Idaho, his wife having died in 1908. Three children have been born to this union: William, Edna and Nicholas, all at home. Mrs. Zehr and the children are members of the Methodist church while Mr. Zehr belongs to the Modern Woodmen of America. He is a Democrat, was assessor of Deuel county two years and served as precinct assessor several years. He is progressive in his ideas and one of the substantial men of Deuel county and the Panhandle.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.


    Adam H. Zimmerman    

    Pioneer settler of the Big Springs district who came here in the early days; passed through all the hardships and privations of frontier life and now is one of the substantial and prosperous farmers of the Panhandle; all this won by his own untiring effort and courage in the face of seemingly insurmountable difficulties. He was born in northwestern Ohio, June 10, 1859, the son of Adam and Catherine (Schott) Zimmerman, both natives of Germany, who came to the United States about 1855. Mr. and Mrs. Zimmerman located in Defiance county, Ohio, where the father engaged in farming. He was a carpenter by trade but never worked at it except for himself. The mother and father both died in Ohio, the former in 1872 and the father in 1886. They were the parents of five children but Adam is the only one here. The father remarried after his first wife died and had two more children, one of whom still lives. Mr. Zimmerman helped organize several schools and churches in Ohio.

    Adam Zimmerman was educated in the public schools of Ohio, helped on the home place and at the age of twenty-one started in life for himself, as a farmer, a vocation he has followed successfully all his life. October 8, 1882, he married Miss Caroline Kurtz, the daughter of Jacob and Christina Kurtz, both natives of Germany. Ten children have been born to this union: Samuel, of Keith county; Frederick, deceased; James, deceased; Ella, the wife of George Brown of Colorado; Frank, of Deuel county; Adam, Ida, Annie, George and Ralph all at home.

    Mr. and Mrs. Zimmerman came to Nebraska in 1885, took up a homestead on April 5th, of that year; filed at North Platte and proved up at Sidney. When they came here they had little of this world's goods but the determination to succeed and that has been enough. Mr. Zimmerman and a neighbor bought a team, wagon and harness in partnership to work their land but for a time the crops were poor. Wood had to be gathered in the canyons and distances were great. The family suffered severely from blizzards and drought but stuck to the land and won out. Mr. Zimmerman says that several times he was completely out of money and had to work to secure even a small amount and work was almost impossible to get. Settlers were few and far apart and many grew discouraged and left the country. At one time Mr. Zimmerman went to Colorado to work; received twenty dollars for the month but when he had paid for his labor at home and railroad fare was only two and a half dollars ahead which tells us of the difficulties of that day. Today, Mr. Zimmerman has a well improved farm of several hundred acres, modern machinery; raises horses and cattle and for the past ten years has had an abundance of the world's goods. He is a Republican; a member of the Farmers Union and has served as school director of his district since he came here while Mrs. Zimmerman is treasurer. Today he has retired from active life and is enjoying the fruits of his labors.

    Source:  History of Western Nebraska and Its People; Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux Counties.  A Group Often Called The Panhandle of Nebraska, 1921
    Transcribed by: Mary Saggio.



     

     

     

     

     

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