Turner County, South Dakota



Aggergard, Peter N.

Berry, F. K.

Bones, John T.

Branch, W. S.

Carlson, Carl

Carter, C. S.

Costain, Thomas B.

Cotton, Philip J.

Crane, Ernest W.

Ede, Ernest J., M. D.

Elce, Thomas C.

Elliott, W.

Fay, C. H.

Gilbert, Gus

Gilbert, Gustav

Gilbert, L.

Guernsey, J. T.

Hackett, C. F.

Hand, J. A.

Hayward, S.

Heeren, W. E.

Heselton, W. H.

Howard, George W.

Howard, Leonard

Howard, M. T.

Hurd, B. H.

Janssen, R.

Johnson, E. A., D. D. S.

Kaufman, Edwin J., M. D.

Langan, Hugh and James

McAlear, Patrick

McLoughlin, Miles

May, Edward

Monaghan, Rev. Patrick T.

Mueller, John Christ

Murphy, Frank J.

Nelson, E. C.

Nelson, George

Nelson, Nick

Newby, Albert G.

Newby, I. H.

Nutting, Dr. W. W.

Peterman, Dr. A. L.

Polley, Daniel

Pratt, C. G.

Rathbun, G. S.

Rector, W. H.

Robinson, Oliver A.

Roeber, Fred

Roeber, Henry

Rundell, Eli C.

Ryan, John

Sawady, Louis

Schafer, H. H.

Schafer, Louis

Schneider, Rev. Arthur John

Shurtleff, J. H.

Stilwell, William M.

Stout, Zeb

Thielman, Vale P.

Theilman, Vale P.

Van Ruschen, H.

Vernon, H. H.

Walker, Pinkney T.

Way, Robert J.

Wheeler, Frank L.

White, Walter Roy

Winn, T. C.

Wood, W. R.




Memorial and Biographical Record of Turner, Lincoln, Union and Clay Counties, South Dakota
Geo. A. Ogle & CO., Chicago, 1897
Contributed by Jim Dezotell

HON. HUGH and JAMES A. LANGAN. Were these two brothers to withdraw their business from the town of Centerville, a lack would be felt in the enterprises of that thriving place, which it would take some time to supply. They are engaged in the real-estate and live-stock business, their landed possessions aggregating in the neighborhood of 7,000 acres in various sections of the country, and their stock-dealing interests are among the largest in the west. The parents of these two gentlemen were natives of Ireland, from which country they emigrated in 1856 to America. They spent a short time in Chester county, Pa., and later on removed to Clinton county, Iowa, and settled on a farm near Dewitt. In this latter place Hugh and James were raised
and grew to maturity. They attended the common schools of the district and made their home with their parents until they engaged in the drug business together in Dewitt, and this enterprise they operated for a period of ten years in connection with general farming and stock raising. In 1879 they sold out and removed to Crawford county, of the same state, and began operations in real estate and dealing in livestock, and this they still conduct in connection with their interests in Turner and Clay counties, S. Dak. They established themselves in Dakota in 1884, buying at that time about 3000 acres in the two counties, and this, with their holdings in Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin, amounts to some 7000 acres, as stated above. Langan Brothers are also known as among the largest handlers of live stock in the west, and they do a very extensive business in this line. They have on hand at this writing about 500 head of cattle, but have not stocked up yet for the winter, as during the cold months they feed on an average in the neighborhood of 600 head.

Hon. Hugh Langan, the elder, was born in county Donegal, Ireland, in 1850, and was about six years old when he accompanied his parents to this country. He is yet a single man and looks after the interests of the firm in Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Politically he is a stanch Republican, and is well known and universally liked by all who have the pleasure of his acquaintance. In 1885 he represented Turner and Clay counties in the territorial legislature, and his record in that body is a credit alike to himself and the district he represented.

James A. Langan, who looks after the South Dakota end of the business, was also born in county Donegal, Ireland, in 1852, and was four years old when he came to America. He has been associated with his brother since their first business venture, and he has taken an active part in developing the enterprises in which they are mutually interested. He was married, in 1888, to Miss Mary E. Glynn, a native of Scott county, Iowa, and a daughter of Thomas and Anna Glynn, and this union has been productive of the bright little children, on whom the following names have been bestowed: Hugh, Cyril, and Miriam. James A. Langan is also a Republican in his political views.

That the members of the firm have prospered goes without saying, and this fact is conclusive evidence of their business tact and good judgment regarding investments. They make their various enterprises fit together, and in carrying on their affairs display the utmost courtesy, a high sense of honor, and a desire to do well by those with whom they deal, while not neglecting their own interests.

Memorial and Biographical Record of Turner, Lincoln, Union and Clay Counties, South Dakota
Geo. A. Ogle & CO., Chicago, 1897
contributed by Jim Dezotell

HON. THOMAS C. ELCE, state senator from Turner county, a prominent farmer, and a well-known citizen of Germantown township, in section 29 of which he resides, was born in Clinton county, Pa., September 3, 1843, and is a son of Thomas C. and Sarah (Bailey) Elce, both natives of Pennsylvania. The former was a shoemaker by trade, and carried on
the boot and shoe business at Liberty, Pa., until about 1852, when he removed to Williamsport of the same state where he was foreman in a large sawmill. In 1855 he left Pennsylvania with his family for Clinton county, Iowa, where he located and engaged in farming. He was of German and English descent, and died at the age of seventy-six years. Mrs. Elce passed her girlhood in her native place, her parents being Quakers, and lived to be fifty-four years old, her demise occurring in Clinton county, Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Elce were married May 10, 1827, and were the parents of ten children, as follows: Daniel B., of Williamsport, Pa.; Mary E., wife of Sylvester Hyman, of Parker, Turner Co., S. Dak.; William H., deceased; Charles B., of Parker;
Benjamin F., deceased; Thomas C. , the subject of this sketch; Sarah F., deceased; Emorine, deceased; Jacob O., of Germantown township, Turner county, and James T., deceased.

Thomas C. was the sixth child in the order of their birth, and twelve years old when the parents located in Clinton, Iowa, where he passed his youth from that age. He remained with his parents until the opening of the war, and in 1861 enlisted in company M, First Iowa regiment, cavalry, as a private. He saw active service for over four years and a half, was with Custer in Texas, and a member of Gen. Rosecrans' body guard at the battle of Prairie Grove, participated in Gen. Steele's raid on Camden, Ark. , and took part in many engagements. He was honorably discharged March 14, 1866, as quartermaster sergeant, and returned to Clinton, Iowa, where he was married October 11, 1866, to Miss Sarah E. Edminster. She was born in
Lycoming county, Pa., the second child of a family of seven children, and was about eight years old when her parents located in Ogle county, Ill. After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Elce resided in Clinton county, Iowa, where he engaged in general farming until 1869, and then removed to Mahaska county, same state, where he conducted a farm until 1873, the date of his arrival in Turner county, Dak. Ter. He entered the homestead where he now resides, erecting a small frame house 12 x 19 feet, and there he and his wife took up their abode. He now owns 80 acres of well-improved land, on which he also has a fine grove of trees. He devotes his time to general farming and stock raising.

Mr. Elce is a stanch Republican, and, besides being a representative of his county in the state senate at present, he has also served as county commissioner and is now acting as treasurer of the Finlay school district. He has always taken considerable interest in school matters and has been closely identified with the improvement of the educational features of his district. He was one of the organizers of the J. Carlton post, G.A.R. , at Parker, and is a member of .the Baptist church. Mr. and Mrs. Elce have been blest with one son, John E., born July 24, 1880, in Turner county.

“Who’s Who in Finance, Banking and Insurance”
Volume 1 Edited by John W. Leonard 1911
Transcribed by Pamela J. Hamilton 9-19-2010


Banker, farmer; born Turner county, South Dakota, June 30, 1877; son of Rev. Christian and Anna (Schrag) Mueller; educated in Bethel College, Newton, Kansas.; Academic course, 1893-1895; graduated from South Dakota Wesleyan University, Mitchell, South Dakota, commercial course, 1898; married in Turner County, South Dakota, May 25, 1899, Caroline P. Miller; three children: Noah, David, Ocelia and one deceased. Taught in public schools six years. President First National Bank, freeman, Mennonite Aid Plan (Insurance); member Freeman Implement Co., Independent Harvester Co.; director South Dakota Interurban Railroad. Town Clerk: Childstown, Township seven consecutive years. Was Turner county Committeeman four years; candidate for State Legislature from Turner County, in 1910. Republican: Mennonite. Chairman School Board serving 2nd term. Rose Valley School district. Residence; Route 2, Marion. Office: Freeman.

History of Dakota Territory, Vol. 5 by George Washington Kingsbury 1915
trancribed by Pamela Hamilton


Ernest W. Crane, founder and proprietor of the Crane Automobile Company of Yankton, is a native of Turner County, South Dakota, born March 3, 1879. His father, J. A. Crane, still resides in Centerville, this state. He was born in Ohio and came to South Dakota, or what was then Dakota territory about 1867, in company with his father, William Crane, who established the family home in Vermillion, Clay County, and there opened the first blacksmith shop in the Dakotas. J.A. Crane wedded Minnie Hall, a native of London, England who came to the Dakotas with her parents. She died in the year 1889. Ernest W. Crane is the eldest in a family of five, having two brothers and two sisters, the others being: Arthur a farmer living near Beresford, Lincoln County South Dakota; Forest, a house mover of Sioux Falls; Nettie the wife of Reuben Saville, of Centerville, South Dakota; and Myrtle, the wife of Burt Cune, also of Centerville.
Ernest W. Crane was born on a farm, but his father later built the first hotel at Centerville, Turner County, and in that establishment the boy largely spent his youthful days. He was educated in the public schools, which he attended to the age of sixteen years, after which he was employed at farm labor for two years. He then engaged in blacksmithing and house moving in connection with his father and when about twenty-five years old purchased his father’s house moving outfit and began business on his own account. In 1903 he removed to Yankton, where he continued operations as a house mover, his business, however, extending over a wide section of the state. He became particularly well known in the southeastern section of South Dakota and he continued his activities along that line until 1913, when he embarked in the automobile business in Yankton, establishing a first-class garage. He now has the agency for the King motor car and the Carnation car and in addition he conducts a general repair and storage business and deals in all kinds of automobile accessories and supplies. He has been very successful in the new venture, his business growing rapidly.
In 1903 Mr. Crane was married to Miss Marie Nelsen, a native of Denmark, and they have one son, Harvey. Mr. Crane holds membership with the Modern Brotherhood of American and his political indorsement is given to the republican party. He is well informed concerning important political issues, but is not an office seeker. His entire life has been spent in the northwest and has been one of intense and well directed activity, his energy and utilization of opportunity bringing to him the success which he now enjoys.

South Dakota Legislative Manual
Seventeenth Session of the Legislature, 1921
Transcribed by Pamela J. Hamilton
September 23, 2010


Sixth District, Turner County, S.D. Nick Nelson (Republican) was born at Sindal Sogn, Denmark, August 2, 1862. Educated in the public Schools in Denmark. Came to South Dakota in 1889, locating in Turner County, near Centerville. Is a farmer and breeder of Poland China hogs. Has been township supervisor for the past 15 years, and school district treasurer for 25 years. Elected to the legislature in 1920. Address, Centerville, S. D.

History of Dakota Territory:
By George W. Kingsbury, 1915
Transcribed by Pamela J. Hamilton
September 21, 2010

Frank J. Murphy

Frank J. Murphy, living at White Owl and filling the position of county auditor of Meade County, was born at Swan Lake in Turner County, South Dakota, September 10, 1882, one of the nine children of Jeremiah and Mary A. (Hogan) Murphy, who are natives of Nova Scotia and Upper Canada Respectively. In early life the father worked in the grocery and meat business in Wisconsin, to which state he removed in young manhood. Following the outbreak of the Civil War he enlisted as a member of Company E, Tenth Wisconsin Regiment, in which he served as a private for three years. He was twice wounded in battle, but he never faltered when duty called and his bravery and valor made his military record a most creditable one. On leaving the service Mr. Murphy came to South Dakota and homesteaded. Later he engaged in general merchandising at Swan Lake and at the time of the building of the railroad he took up contract work in South Dakota and Minnesota, continuing in the business for ten years. On the expiration of that period he settled in Hurley, South Dakota, were he lived retired until 1900, when he removed to Alton, Iowa where he and his wife now reside.

Frank J. Murphy pursued his education in the public schools of Hurley and after leaving the high school continued his studies in the University of South Dakota, liberal educational advantages thus qualifying him for life’s practical and responsible duties. At the age of eighteen years he began clerking in a grocery store during vacation periods. He afterward attended school in the winter, but later began teaching near Monroe, South Dakota, spending a year in a rural school. Subsequently he was employed by F. M. Slagle & Company at Alton, Iowa, where he handled grain and coal for ten years. He then removed to a ranch near White Owl, this state, and devoted some time to the operation of the place, being thus engaged until his election to the office of county auditor in November 1914. He entered upon the duties of the position January 1, 1915, and is proving a capable official.

Mr. Murphy was untied n marriage in October, 1908, to Miss Amanda A. Cowen, who was born in Alcester, South Dakota, a daughter of Robert and Martha (Sherman) Cowen. The father was born in Wisconsin in 1857, while the mother’s birth occurred in Pennsylvania, June 27, 1858. He always carried on farming and in 2884 removed to this state, setting at Alcester, where he continued to engage in general agricultural pursuits for a number of years. He died in August, 1912, while his wife survives. Mrs. Murphy was one of seven children and attended school at Alcester and afterward graduated from St. Joseph’s Hospital at Sioux City in the class of 1907. She is a member of the State Association of Graduate Nurses of Iowa.

In his political views Mr. Murphy was always been a stalwart democrat, unfaltering in his allegiance to the party. He belongs to the Roman Catholic Church and fraternally is connected with the Elks at Yankton. The greater part of his life has been passed in this state and as a native son he has made a creditable record by his loyalty to its best interests and his tangible efforts for the improvement and development of the district in which he lives.

History of Minnehaha County, South Dakota
By Dana R. Bailey 1899
Transcribed by Pamela J. Hamilton
September 23, 2010


MAY, EDWARD, was born near New Orleans, LA., November 6, 1855; was educated at the public schools and at the University of Virginia and then engaged in the cotton trade with his father at his native city. When twenty-two years old he became a member of the Board of Trade in Chicago and also of the Union League Club, which membership he retained until 1895. In 1883 he established the Turner County Bank at Hurley, Turner County, this state, where he remained until July, 1889, when he removed to Sioux Falls, where he was since resided engaged in the real estate business. He was very popular in social circles, is a good business man and highly esteemed as a citizen.

“History of Dakota Territory”, George W. Kingsbury, 1915


Rev. Arthur John Schneider, pastor of St. Mary's of Perpetual Help at Marion, was born in Centerville, Wisconsin, on the 18th of June, 1882, a son of Louis and Augusta Schneider. The father was a merchant and both he and his wife survive. Rev. Arthur J. Schneider was educated in the parochial schools of Wisconsin, in St. Francis Seminary, where he pursued his study of the classics and in St. Paul's Seminary of St. Paul, where he studied theology. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1908 by Archbishop Ireland and was first appointed as a missionary at Parker, South Dakota, where he remained for a year. In 1909 he removed to Marion, at which time there was but a smalll frame church in the town. In the years which have since intervened he has carried the work of the church steadily forward and he erected the present beautiful brick edifice at a cost of thirty thousand dollars. There are sixty families in the congregation at Marion and eighty children in the school, being taught by six sisters of St. Francis. The school is in a flourishing condition and the work of the church has been carefully organized and is bringing forth good results. In
addition to ministering to the needs of his parish, Rev. Schneider also attends Monroe, an out mission with twenty-five families.

Father Schneider holds membership with the Knights of Columbus at Mitchell. He is much interested in South Dakota and her welfare, especially in inducing good families to locate in this state. He is a broad-minded and progressive man, and studies the vital and significant problems of the age, as well as those which have to do directly with theology and the upbuilding of the church.


History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915

C. S. Carter, manager of the C. W. Derr Lumber & Grain Company, has been the resident agent of this concern at Badger for the past eight years. His birth occurred in Iowa on the 15th of January, 1883, his parents being J. T. and Laura T. Carter, who established their home at Parker, South Dakota, in 1901. The father devoted his attention to general agricultural pursuits until his retirement in the year 1909, when he took up his abode in California.

C. S. Carter acquired his early education in the public schools and later continued his studies in the Dakota Wesleyan University at Mitchell. His initial training in the business world was received as agent for J. F. Anderson and a short time afterward he accepted a position with the C. W. Derr Lumber & Grain Company, which he has represented as resident agent at Badger for the past eight years. In this capacity he has proven his services of value to the company and he is widely recognized as an enterprising and able young business man.

On the 21st of October, 1908, Mr. Carter was united in marriage to Miss Mattie M. Hatch, a daughter of George Hatch. They have two children, Clare and Floyd. Mr. Carter gives his political allegiance to the prohibition party, being a firm advocate of the cause of temperance, and his religious faith is that of the Congregational church. He is fond of fishing, baseball and other outdoor sports and is a popular young man who easily wins and holds friends by reason of his many good traits of character and a pleasing personality.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


Ernest D. Ede, well known as a representative of the legal profession in Huron, possesses the studious habits and the analytical mind which are indispensable factors of success to him who would devote his life to law practice. He is now accorded a liberal clientage and handles his cases most ably.

Mr. Ede is a Native of Lynn county, Kansas, born in 1876. The removal of the family to Earlville, Iowa, led him to become a pupil in the public schools of that place and he afterward attended college at Dixon, Illinois, and continued his studies at Cedar Falls, Iowa. After spending some time in the Iowa State University he entered the Chicago University and thus his studies were continued along broadening lines, bringing him a comprehensive knowledge of general and professional questions. The year 1902 was that of his graduation from the Iowa State University. He read law under Allan Bogue at Centerville, South Dakota, and for some time he was identified with educational interests in this state. He was a teacher in the high school of Yankton in 1901-2 and from 1902 until 1906 had charge of the schools of Centerville. It was during this period that he devoted his leisure hours to reading law and thus qualified for the bar. In 1906 he located at Huron, where he has since engaged in the practice of law and in the intervening period of nine years he has made a creditable record as a strong and resourceful representative of the profession. He prepares his cases with great thoroughness and care and his ability is evidenced in his careful analysis and sound logic.

On the 27th of November, 1912, Mr. Ede was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Jones, of Manchester, New Hampshire, and they have a wide acquaintance in Huron, the hospitality of many of the best homes being cordially extended to them. Mr. Ede is a Mason of high rank, having attained the thirty-second degree. He also belongs to the Mystic Shrine at Sioux Falls and he is a loyal exemplar of the teachings of the craft, which are based upon the principle of universal brotherhood. In politics Mr. Ede is a progressive and upon the ticket of that party was elected to the legislature in 1913. To questions of government he gives careful consideration and his support of or opposition to any measure is the result of comprehensive study of the situation, its needs and its opportunities. He may well be classed among the public-spirited citizens and representative men of Huron.

“History of Dakota Territory”, George W. Kingsbury, 1915


Dr. Edwin J. Kauffman is a young practicing physician of Marion who has there successfully followed his profession since 1906. His birth occurred in Turner county, South Dakota, on the 22d of February, 1884, his parents being Jacob P. and Katherine Kauffman. The father came to South Dakota as a young man, about forty years ago, and was married in this state. He took up a homestead claim in Turner county and has resided thereon continuously since, being actively engaged in the work of the fields for a period of thirty-five years. His wife is also yet living and they are well known and highly esteemed throughout the community.

Edwin J. Kauffman obtained his early education in the district schools and subsequently attended Dakota Wesleyan University at Mitchell and Drake University of Des Moines, Iowa. With the desire to qualify for a professional career he then entered the medical department of the University of Illinois at Chicago, which institution conferred upon him the degree of M. D. on the 6th of June, 1906. Returning to his native state, he opened an office at Marion, where he has remained continuously since and is accorded a liberal and gratifying practice. With the steady progress of the profession he keeps in touch through his membership in the Yankton District Medical Society, the South Dakota State Medical Society, the South Dakota Railroad Medical Academy and the American Medical Association. He acts as local physician for the Chicago. Milwaukee &, St. Paul Railway, holds the office of vice president of the board of health of Turner county and is physician for Camp No. 4068, M. W. A.

On the 26th of June, 1907, Dr. Kauffman was united in marriage to Miss Caroline Graber, a daughter of Peter Graber, of Freeman, Hutchinson county, South Dakota. They have one adopted child, Esther. The Doctor gives his political allegiance to the republican party and his religious faith is that of the Mennonite church. He is deeply interested in the development of South Dakota and is widely recognized as a rising young medical practitioner and one of the state's progressive and prosperous native sons.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


Dr. E. A. Johnson has a well appointed dental office in Viborg and is accorded a liberal practice. He is in touch with the most modern and progressive methods and his work is proving highly satisfactory to his many patrons. South Dakota numbers him among her native sons, his birth having occurred in Clay county on the 5th of April, 1884, his parents being John and Lena Johnson, who came to this state at an early period in its development. The father homesteaded in Clay county and there engaged in farming for a number of years. He passed away in 1886 but his widow survives and resides on the home farm. After attending the district schools near his father's home Dr. Johnson became a pupil in a high school at Denver, Colorado, and continued his education in the University of Southern California, from which he was graduated on the completion of a course in dentistry with the class of 1908. Having thus qualified for the profession, he first practiced in the Lake Andes district for three years and then removed to Viborg, where he opened his office in 1912. He is the only dentist there and has a large practice drawn from the town and the surrounding country. He possesses the mechanical skill and ingenuity which is an essential element in the work of dentistry and he has, too, a broad scientific knowledge to which he is continually adding by reading and research.

On the 30th of June, 1914, Dr. Johnson was united in marriage to Miss Katherine Bacon,
a daughter of Alonzo Bacon, of Hurley, this state. Dr. Johnson belongs to District Dental Society No. 1 and to the South Dakota Dental Association. He is also a member of the Alpha chapter of the Xi Psi Phi Society at the University of Southern California. His religious belief is that of the Baptist church, which finds in him a loyal member. His political indorsement is given to the democratic party and fraternally he is connected with the Masonic lodge at Hurley and with the Odd Fellows society. Recognizing the possibilities of South Dakota and its chances for development, he aids in many well defined plans for the public good and seeks to benefit his community in every possible way. His strong and salient characteristics commend him to the confidence and regard of those with whom he has been brought in contact and he has a growing circle of friends.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


Rev. Patrick T. Monaghan, pastor of St. Christina's Roman Catholic church at Parker and director of the Sioux Falls apostolate, was born in Jamesville, Pennsylvania, October 20, 1876. He is a son of John and Margaret (Dempsey) Monaghan, natives of County Monaghan, Ireland. The mother came to the United States at the age of eleven and the father at twenty-five and their marriage occurred at Audenried, Pennsylvania, where the father worked as a miner. In 1893 the family went to Iowa and in-that state John Monaghan passed away in 1897. His wife survives him and makes her home in Iowa. To their union were born twelve children, of whom Father Monaghan is the tenth.

Rev. Patrick T. Monaghan acquired his early education in the public schools of Pennsylvania and at the age of seventeen entered St. Joseph's College at Dubuque, Iowa, where he spent three years, finishing his classical education at St. Viateur's College, Kankakee, Illinois, in 1900. In the same year he entered St. Mary's Seminary at Cincinnati, Ohio, and there completed courses in philosophy and theology. He was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood June 17, 1905, and was placed in charge of the congregation at Gettysburg, South Dakota, where he remained for eight months. Following this he spent one year at the Catholic University in Washington, D. C, and then came to Parker, South Dakota, where he began work with Father O’Hara on the Sioux Falls apostolate or mission band. Upon the retirement of Father O'Hara one year later Father Monaghan was given charge of the apostolate and was also appointed pastor of St. Christina's church, a position which he has since filled. He is assisted by Rev. John Brady and Rev. John O'Mahoney, who are his associates on the mission band. Father Monaghan is indeed doing a great work in Parker among the Catholic people and he has their love in large measure. He is a man of scholarly attainments and most earnest and consecrated in his work.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


On the roster of efficient and public-spirited officials of Turner county appears the name of E. C. Nelson, who has served two terms as county treasurer. He was born in Denmark, December 11, 1879. His father dying before the son was born, he was reared in the home of his maternal grandparents, Peter and Petranilla Nelson. With them he came to the United States in 1887 and located in Mecosta county, Michigan, whence in the same year they moved to Turner county. South Dakota. Until he was nineteen years of age he remained upon the farm and attended district school, supplementing this by one year at the Baptist College at Sioux Falls. When he began his independent career he became connected with the grain business and followed this as an employe for nine years. In May, 1908, he was appointed deputy county treasurer and in 1910 was elected treasurer of Turner county, serving by reelection since that time. He has proven capable, conscientious and reliable in the discharge of his duties and his record is a credit to his ability and his public spirit. In 1915 he removed to Wakonda where he is associated with the Wakonda State Bank as vice president.

Mr. Nelson has been twice married. In 1908 he wedded Miss Byrde Hirst, a daughter of W. J. Hirst of Parker. She died in the spring of 1909 and on the 11th of December, 1912,
Mr. Nelson married Miss Stella Grieve, a daughter of F. A. Grieve of Parker, South Dakota.

Mr. Nelson is connected fraternally with the Masonic lodge of Parker and is noble grand in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He gives his political allegiance to the republican party and in addition to his present office has held other positions of trust and responsibility. He has served as city auditor and city assessor of Viborg, and has been a member of the republican county central committee and a delegate to numerous county conventions. He has accomplished a great deal of important work in the public service and his record has been one of straightforward and conscientious endeavor in whatever position he has been found.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


George Nelson is the president of the Scandinavian Bank at Viborg and is carefully directing the interests of that institution in a manner that is leading to its substantial development, growth and success. He was born in Mount Carroll, Illinois, January 25, 1872, and is a son of Chris and Margaret Nelson. The family came to South Dakota in the year of his birth and established their home near Viborg, the father securing a homestead in Turner county. For a number of years he engaged in farming and contributed to the agricultural development and progress of the section in which he lived. He survives but his wife has passed away.

George Nelson was reared in Turner county and after mastering the branches of learning taught in the district schools continued hie education in the University of South Dakota at Vermillion, where he made his way by his own efforts, working in order to earn the money to pay his tuition. He spent one year in college and afterward engaged in teaching school, displaying ability to impart clearly and readily to others the knowledge that he had acquired. In early manhood he also worked upon the home farm and became familiar with every phase of life incident to the development of the fields. In 1898 he came to Viborg and assisted in the organization of the Scandinavian Bank, of which he became the first cashier, occupying that position until he was called to the presidency of the institution in 1912. From the beginning the business of the bank has constantly increased. It is capitalized for twenty thousand dollars and its officers are: George Nelson, president; P. C. Madsen, vice president; Joseph Swenson, cashier; and Harold Larson, assistant cashier. Mr. Nelson studies every question bearing upon the banking business and his lose application, unremitting energy and broad knowledge of financial affairs have been the strong and salient elements in the success of the institution of which he is the head. He is also interested in South Dakota real estate, in which he has made judicious investments.

On the 24th of June, 1897, Mr. Nelson was united in marriage to Miss Cora Christensen, a daughter of Nels Christensen. Their children are as follows: Everett, Margaret, Merton, Emmett, Louise, Lillian, Joy and Ralph. Mr. Nelson's religious views are in accord with the Protestant faith. In politics he is a republican, recognized as a stalwart supporter of the party but not an office seeker. He has served, however, as city treasurer and in that position, as in every other relation of public trust, he proved himself true, loyal and capable. He belongs to the Danish Brotherhood of America, to the Odd Fellows society and in Masonry has attained the thirty-second degree of the Scottish Rite. South Dakota finds him an enterprising citizen, greatly interested in the welfare of the state and contributing in every possible way toward the advancement of the interests of the commonwealth.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


Oliver A. Robinson is a well known and greatly respected resident of Spink county, where he owns a farm of one hundred and sixty acres located on section 31, Harmony township. In addition to the cultivation of his farm he follows his trade of carpentering to some extent and is known as a capable and reliable workman. He was born in St. George, Quebec, Canada, on the 22d of February, 1867, a son of Francis Xavier and Emily (Russeau) Robinson. The family are of Scotch descent, but have been in the new world for many generations. The father came to South Dakota with his family from Iowa, where he had lived for thirteen years, and after coming here took up a homestead in Brown county, which he improved and where he lived for ten years, after which he removed to Spink county, but subsequently went to Parker and resided there for a time. Still later he took up his residence in Jefferson and is now a resident of that place. He is eighty-six years of age, but is in better health than many a man ten years his junior. His wife passed away in 1892 and is buried in Aberdeen, this state.

Oliver A. Robinson received his education in Iowa, but left school when a youth of seventeen. He then assisted his father upon the farm until he had reached the age of twenty-four years, when for two years he rented a farm, after which he purchased a relinquishment. He still owns that farm and raises both grain and stock, keeping eleven head of cattle, nineteen horses and a number of hogs. In connection with farming he works at the carpenter's trade and has built a number of residences, barns, etc., in his locality. Whatever he does is done well and his labors return him a good annual income.

Mr. Robinson was united in marriage, on the 6th of June, 1893, at Frankfort, South Dakota, to Miss Barbara Valder, a daughter of Peter and Matilda (Duren) Valder, the former a hotel proprietor at Frankfort. Her father passed away in 1901 and was buried in Frankfort, but her mother still resides in that city. Mr. and Mrs. Robinson have ten children, namely: Loretta, the wife of Merritt Sheldon, a farmer of Spink county; Ermena, at home; Loraine and Louis helping their father; Stephen, who passed away in 1914, at the age of thirteen years and is buried at Frankfort; Callist and Alma, who are attending school; and Audrey, Eulalia and Maurice.

The father is independent in the exercise of his right of franchise, voting for the man rather than the party. He is a member of the Catholic church and is ever ready to aid in the furtherance of its work. For three, decades Mr. Robinson has farmed in South Dakota and has always been among the first to adopt new machinery or new methods that promise to be of value. His progressive spirit and his industry have brought
him prosperity and he is one of the substantial farmers of Spink county. Those who know
him best esteem him most, as his character is based upon those admirable qualities which stand the severest tests of life.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


Walter Roy White, a member of the bar practicing at Centerville, was born in Delaware township, Lincoln county, South Dakota, November 24, 1880, a son of Daniel Walter, who was born July 7, 1852, in Brewer, Maine, and Andora (Keller) White, born September 15, 1852, in Pennsylvania. The former is a descendant of Peregrine White, the first child born after the landing of the Pilgrims from the Mayflower, and the family is an old one in Maine. Daniel W. White left Maine when a boy and with his parents settled in eastern Iowa, remaining there until 1874. In that year he removed to Dakota territory and homesteaded in Eden township, Lincoln county, where he carried on general farming for a number of years, afterward removing to Delaware township, where he again owned and cultivated a tract of land. He and his wife now live retired in Centerville, enjoying the fruits of their former toil.

Walter Roy White was educated in the district schools and supplemented his preliminary training by a course in the University of South Dakota at Vermillion, which he entered in 1898. He had previously studied law in a school at Detroit, Michigan, and entered the law department at Vermillion in 1903, being graduated therefrom with the class of 1906. After having thus carefully prepared for the bar he entered the office of C. B. Kennedy for the practice of law at Canton, South Dakota. After a short time be entered into partnership with Lewis Berven at Centerville and purchased the library and practice of Madeen & Madeen of Centerville in 1906. The partnership continued for a year, at the end of which time Mr. White, because of ill health, sold out to Mr. Berven. He then traveled and bought and sold real estate until December, 1913, when, having regained his health, he again engaged in the practice of his profession and is now accorded a large and distinctively representative clientage. He prepares his cases in a thorough, painstaking and conscientious manner, with the result that he has won many notable cases and is regarded as one of the prominent lawyers of his county. He was appointed city attorney in May, 1914, and is now representing the legal interests of Centerville. His political allegiance is given the republican party, which finds in him a stalwart champion, ever ready to support his position by intelligent argument. He belongs to the Commercial Club of Centerville and is in hearty sympathy with its efforts to promote the development of the community.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


Frank L. Wheeler, a grain dealer of Scotland, Bon Homme county, is a native of the lake country of New York, a region famous for its beauty. His birth occurred May 20, 1859, in Seneca county, south of Seneca Falls, on the old Wheeler homestead situated on the west shore of Cayuga lake. His parents, Jonathan and Harriet (Ogden) Wheeler, were natives of the Empire state and the mother, who has now reached the advanced age of eighty-five years, is still a resident of that state, making her home in Geneva, at the foot of Seneca lake.

Mr. Wheeler of this review migrated west in the spring of 1880 and remained for a year at Winona, Minnesota, but on the 17th of May, 1681, he came to Huron, South Dakota, on the first train that made the trip with its own engine. Owing to a stretch of marshy ground transfers had to be made until a firmer track could be built and even this at places sank below the surface, the water rising behind the train as it proceeded on its way. Shortly after his arrival in South Dakota Mr. Wheeler opened a lumberyard in Hitchcock near where he took up a homestead, a pre-emption and a timber claim, remaining there until 1893. He was then for two years in business at Viborg and for three years at Howard, after which time, in 1898, he came to Scotland and entered the grain business, in which he has continued to the present time. He has a large elevator and is well equipped for handling all kinds of grain and farm produce. He also has elevators at Blaha and Plumba. His careful study of commercial and agricultural conditions and his systematic methods of carrying on his business are the causes of his gratifying success. In addition to his grain business he has other interests, including a controlling interest in the Peoples Telephone Company of Scotland.

Mr. Wheeler was united in marriage in Scotland in 1891 to Miss Ida Shaw, a daughter of Henry and Mary (Eckert) Shaw, who came to South Dakota in 1886. Mr. and Mrs. Wheeler have become parents of five children: Mary, a teacher in the Scotland schools; Floyd, who is associated in business with his father; Henry, who is now taking an engineering course at Vermillion; Frank and Harriet.

Upon coming to Scotland to reside Mr. Wheeler purchased the house in which he had been previously married. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity and has served as worshipful master and high priest. He fortunately escaped the blizzard of January 12, 1888, as he was on a visit in New York at the time. However, he had occasion to worry because of the great storm, as on his ranch at Hitchcock was a considerable herd of cattle in charge of a brother. In a little over one year from that time his farm was in the track of the worst prairie fire the Dakotas have ever known. On the 2d of April, 1889, the flames swept with appalling speed across the wide plains and at times leaped across half a mile of fire guard. The barn upon Mr. Wheeler's place was burned, but he considered himself fortunate to escape so well. With the usual American thrift and energy he has succeeded in business and is accounted one of Scotland's respected and prosperous citizens. He is a democrat in politics and is a member of the school board, having served as its president for ten years.

History of Dakota Territory, George W. Kingsbury, Vol. 4, 1915


H. Van Ruschen is a practicing attorney of Marion, Turner county. He was born in Illinois on the 4th of April, 1877, a son of W. and Johanna (Addengast) Van Ruschen. The family came to South Dakota in 1879 and settled on a homestead near Chancellor. During the first year of their residence here a cyclone destroyed their cabin, then the grasshoppers and the drought came and no crops were produced. The family bore many hardships and privations incident to frontier life under such conditions, but in time their courage and determination triumphed and success came to them. The father is now living retired in Marion.

H. Van Ruschen was educated in the district schools and afterward held various clerical positions. At length he determined upon the practice of law as a life work and with that end in view began reading in the office and under the direction of the firm of Jones & Jones of Parker. In 1906 he took the bar examination and was admitted to practice and in December of the same year was admitted to practice in the United States courts. He is the pioneer lawyer of Marion and has resided there continuously since 1888. From the first he has been accorded a large and distinctively representative clientage and his ability has advanced him to a front rank among the able lawyers of his part of the state.

On the 16th of September, 1909, Mr. Van Ruschen was united in marriage to Miss Susan Vogt, her father being Jacob F. Vogt, a pioneer of this state. To this union has been born a daughter, Mildred.

In religious faith Mr. Van Ruschen is a Protestant and in politics hi independent, with leanings toward the progressive party. Fraternally he is an Elk, an Odd Fellow, a Woodman, a Yeoman and a Loyal American, and he is also connected with the Rebekah degree of Odd Fellowship. He has been identified with the local newspaper of Marion and he has served as president of the Commercial Club and of the local improvement club. He is treasurer of the Cemetery Association. On several occasions he has been called to public office, as he served as city attorney from 1908 to 1912, and has also been justice of the peace and school clerk, while in 1909 he was elected to represent his district in the state legislature. He made a creditable, record and received the indorsement of his fellow townsmen but declined a reelection. In 1915 he was again appointed city attorney. He has ever worked for the advancement and upbuilding of the community in which he makes his home and has ever indorsed those plans and movements which are a matter of civic virtue and civic pride. His worth is widely acknowledged by his fellow townsmen, who find in him a man worthy of public trust and one whose devotion to the general good stands above question.


HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881
Louis Sawady—was born in Prussia in 1854; came to America in 1871, and settled in New York, where he resided two and one-half years; he then moved to Batavia where he remained four years; from there he moved to Swan Lake, Dakota, and shortly afterward located permanently at Marion Junction, where he is at present, postmaster.


HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

John Ryan—was born in Ireland in 1843; came to America in 1851, and settled in Wisconsin; from Wisconsin he moved to Idaho, Montana and Colorado; from there to Texas; thence to Illinois; thence to Dakota in 1879; he was United States deputy marshal in a district in Texas.


HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Dr. W. W. Nutting—was born in Windsor county, Vermont in 1839; came west in 1877, and settled in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; he then removed to Iowa City; and in the fall of 1880, moved to Marion Junction, Dakota; he married Jennie W. Ward, of Iowa City, Iowa; he has six children; W. W. Jr., physician in Mitchell; C. E., traveling man; R. R., clerk in hotel; Cora I., teacher of music; Aggie L., and Minnie M.




HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Louis Schafer—was born in Wisconsin in 1852; in 1879 he came west and settled in Marian Junction.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Fred Roeber—was born in Watertown, Wisconsin, in 1853; in April, 1879, came to Dakota and settled in Cameron, and soon afterward moved to Marion Junction, where he was one of the earliest settlers; he has served as justice of the peace, school clerk and other town offices; he is now (1881) president of the village; he married Ernestine Gosskopf, of Wisconsin; they have one boy named William.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Henry Roeber—was born in Wisconsin in 1855; in May, 1879, he came west and settled in Cameron, Dakota; in October, 1879, he moved to Marion Junction, where he is now located, (1881).



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

T. C. Winn—was born in Wisconsin in 1854; came west in 1874, where he followed the harness business; he then moved back to Wisconsin; in 1879, he again came west and settled in Marion Junction; he has served as road supervisor here one term; he married Julia Walters, of Iowa; have one girl, named Maggie.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

W. S. Branch—was born in Ohio in 1854; came west and settled in Rochester, Minnesota, in 1876; moved to Dakota in March, 1880, and settled in Parker, and established his business.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

H. H. Schafer—was born in Bavaria in 1845; came to America in 1854, and settled in Iowa; from Iowa he came here in 1867; he married Ada Tubbs, of New York state.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

S. Hayward—was born in Wayne county, New York in 1829; came west in 1856, and settled in New Lisbon, Wisconsin; in 1874, he moved to Vermillion, Dakota; established business in Parker in 1879; he served in the army fifteen months; he married Sarah A. Harris, of Ontario county, New York; has six children, Mary E., Franklin E., Maria, Wallace, Nellie, and Willie.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Vale P. Thielman—born in Germany in 1843; came to America in 1845, and settled in New York, where he received his education; in 1863, he came west and settled in Illinois; from Illinois he came to Dakota in 1864, and settled in Sioux Falls; for some time afterwards he traveled up and down the Missouri in the employ of the government; he was the first white male settler in Turner county; came there in 1869; he served in the military two and a-half years in this Territory and three years in the regular army; he was in the 147th Illinois, company D; was a member of the Territorial legislature one term; he has served in almost every capacity as county and town officer; was superintendent of immigration for some time: he married Sarah J. Black, of Galena, Ill.; they have one adopted child, named Nora.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

J. A. Hand—was born in Akron, Summit county, Ohio, in 1845; came to Wisconsin in 1850 and settled in Columbia county; he received his education in Wisconsin; in 1862, he moved to Illinois; he then moved back to Wisconsin in 1865; in the fall of 1866, he moved to Yankton, D. T., where he read law and was admitted to the bar in 1869; the fall of 1869, he was elected district attorney; in the spring of 1871, he moved to Sioux Falls, Dakota, where he practiced law, and was appointed district attorney; in the fall of 1873, he moved back to Yankton, where he practiced law until 1876, when he was elected probate judge; in the spring of 1877, he was appointed register of deeds, of Lawrence county, in which capacity he served eight months; after that he practiced law in Crook City, until the fall of 1878; that fall he moved to Swan Lake, D. T., and the following fall he moved to Parker, where he settled permanently; he was the first attorney to locate in Parker; he married a daughter of the Rev. Dr. Hoyt, of Yankton; they have three children, Russell C, James A., Melancthon R.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

W. H. Heselton—was born in Skowhegan, Maine in 1850; came west in 1876, and settled in California, where he remained three years; in 1880 he moved to Parker, D. T., where he is now a resident.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Gustav Gilbert—was born in Norway in 1846; came to America in 1864, and settled in Alamakee county, Iowa; he from there moved to Sioux Rapids and started that town; he was the first postmaster in Sioux Rapids; from there he moved to Dakota; he married Carrie Hansen, of Norway; they have one boy, named Julius C. V.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

C. H. Fay—was born in the state of New York in 1851; in 1859, he came west, and settled in Wisconsin; in 1869, he moved to Iowa, and from Iowa to Parker, Dakota; he married Emma Premo, of Wisconsin; they have three children, Lewis W., Melville D., and Mabel L.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

G. S. Rathbun—was born in Dane county, Wisconsin in 1849; in 1865, he moved to Floyd county, Iowa; he then moved to Lake Superior, and from there to Sioux Falls, Dakota; from Sioux Falls he moved to Parker; he served in the army seven months, in the 44th Wisconsin volunteer infantry, under Colonels E. G. Sims and Bissell.




HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

L. Gilbert—was born in the state of New York in 1827; in 1857, came west and settled in Minnesota; in 1877, moved to Dakota and settled in Parker in 1879; served in the army eight months; went in as lieutenant-in the heavy artillery; married Miss Brand, of Madison county, New York; they have one child named Charles E.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

M. T. Howard—was born in Gennesseo, Henry county, Ills., in 1853; in 1870, he went to Wisconsin; he then moved to Sioux Falls, Dakota, and from there to Parker; he was one of the first settlers of this town; has been deputy sheriff and constable at different times; he married Julia M. Coon, of Wisconsin; they have two children, Lulu D., and Corrinne.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

George Hatch—was born in Michigan in 1859; came west in 1873, and settled in Yankton., Dakota; in 1880, he moved to Parker where he established business; he married Christina Smith, of Parker, Dakota.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

George W. Howard—was born in Gennesseo, Illinois in 1840; in 1862, he moved to Wisconsin and settled in Ft. Atkinson; in 1868, he moved to Edgerton, Wisconsin; in 1878, he moved to Sioux Falls, D. T., and from there to Parker, where he is now located; He married Olive D. Coon, of Utica, Wisconsin; they have five children, Gladdys C, George W. Jr., Clarence S., Lucy and Maud.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

C. G. Pratt—was born in Maine in 1848: came west in the spring of 1866, and settled in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; he then moved to Southern Illinois, where he was connected with the I. C. R. R., for twelve years; he then moved to Waterloo, Iowa, where he went into business; from Waterloo he came to Parker, Dakota; he was the first white man on the town site; he served in the navy the last year of the war; served as a clerk in the postoffice department in Milwaukee; he married Anna Harrington, of Oswego, N. Y.; they have two children, Robert and Alice.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

Dr. A. L. Peterman—was born in Ripley county, Indiana in 1852; was educated at .the Iowa State University; graduated in 1877; practiced his profession in Iowa, for two years and then moved to Swan Lake, Dakota; after the town of Parker started he moved there and settled permanently; he has been pension surgeon the past year; is at present county coroner.



HISTORY OF Southeastern Dakota, Its Settlement and Growth, Sioux City Iowa: Western Publishing Company, 1881

H. H. Vernon—was born in Ohio in 1847; came west in 1851; and settled in Illinois; then removed to Iowa, and from Iowa he came to Dakota where he settled permanently; he has served as justice of the peace one term; he married Ellen Berry, of Pennsylvania; they have two children, Bertie T., and Ernest E.




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