Past & Present of Platte County, Nebraska - Volume 1

 

PAST AND PRESENT

OF

PLATTE COUNTY

NEBRASKA

 

A Record of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievement

 

G. W. PHILLIPS

SUPERVISING EDITOR

 

ILLUSTRATED

 

VOLUME I

 

CHICAGO THE S. J. CLARKE PUBLISHING COMPANY 1915

 

 

CONTENTS

CHAPTER I

JEAN NICOLET AT GREEN BAY

JESUIT ENDEAVOR -- REDISCOVERY OF THE MISSISSIPPI -- LA SALLE'S UNDERTAKINGS -- HENNEPIN'S JOURNEY -- LOUISIANA UNDER FRENCH AND SPANISH RULE -- CESSION OF LOUISIANA TO THE U. S. -- DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA -- THE TERRITORY OF LOUISIANA -- THE TERRITORY OF MISSOURI -- A PERIOD OF NO GOVERNMENT -- INDIAN TRIBES AND TREATIES -- NEBRASKA AS A TERRITORY -- TRADERS AND MISSIONARIES -- THE MORMON EXODUS -- THE GOLD HUNTERS -- NEBRASKA AS SEEN IN 1856 --ERECTION OF NEBRASKA -- ORGANIZATION OF THE TERRITORY --ARRIVAL AND DEATH OF GOVERNOR BURT -- LOCATION OF THE CAPITAL -- THE ENABLING ACT -- CONSTITUTION OF 1866 --PRESIDENT JOHNSON'S VETO -- FORMAL ADMISSION OF THE STATE -- NEBRASKA AS A STATE -- COUNTIES,WITH AREAS

9

CHAPTER II

THE PIONEERS

CONSOLIDATION OF TWO TOWN SITE COMPANIES -- THE PIONEER MILL -- WINTER OF DEEP SNOW -- SOME WHO CAME IN 1857

46

CHAPTER III

WHAT MANNER OF MEN THEY WERE

54

CHAPTER IV

ORGANIZATION OF PLATTE COUNTY

GOVERNMENT -- LIST OF COUNTY OFFICIALS FROM 1858 TO 1914 -- COUNTY COMMISSIONERS -- BOARD OF SUPERVISORS -- CHANGE TO SUPERVISOR DISTRICTS -- COUNTY CLERK -- TREASURER -- SHERIFF -- CLERK OF DISTRICT COURT -- REGISTER OF DEEDS -- PROBATE JUDGE -- PROSECUTING ATTORNEY -- DISTRICT ATTORNEY -- COUNTY ATTORNEY -- COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT -- SURVEYOR -- CORONER -- MEMBERS OF LEGISLATURE

3

67

 

4   CONTENTS

CHAPTER V

PROCEEDINGS OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

(FINANCIAL CONDITION OF 1859) -- FINANCIAL REPORT -- ELECTION NOTICE FOR COURTHOUSE -- PREMIUMS ON TREE PLANTING -- CERTIFICATE OF MERIT -- TOWNSHIP SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT ADOPTED

82

CHAPTER VI

THE COURTHOUSE AND OTHERS

COUNTY JAIL -- THE COUNTY FARM

114

CHAPTER VII

TRANSPORTATION

HIGHWAYS AND FERRIES -- FIRST FERRY -- EARLY BRIDGES -- TRANSPORTATION -- THE UNION PACIFIC REACHES COLUMBUS -- SIOUX CITY AND COLUMBUS BRANCH OF THE UNION PACIFIC -- THE FREMONT, ELKHORN AND MISSOURI VALLEY RAILROAD -- THE BURLINGTON AND MISSOURI RAILROAD

118

CHAPTER VIII

RELIGIOUS SOCIETIES

GRACE EPISCOPAL CHURCH -- HISTORY OF CATHOLICITY IN COLUMBUS, NEBRASKA -- INDEPENDENT GERMAN EVANGELICAL PROTESTANT CONGREGATION -- FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH -- METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH -- PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH -- CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH -- GERMAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH -- UNITED BRETHREN IN CHRIST -- REORGANIZED CHURCH OF LATTER DAY SAINTS -- ST. ANTHONY'S (POLISH) CATHOLIC CHURCH -- GERMAN EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN IMMANUEL CHURCH -- THE CEMETERY

130

CHAPTER IX

EDUCATIONAL

SUPERINTENDENT SPEICE'S ANNUAL REPORT -- RURAL SCHOOLS

146

 

CONTENTS   5

CHAPTER X

THE PRESS

THE COLUMBUS GOLDEN AGE -- COLUMBUS JOURNAL -- COLUMBUS REPUBLICAN -- COLUMBUS GAZETTE -- PLATTE COUNTY DEMOCRAT -- THE LEADER -- THE COLUMBUS DEMOCRAT -- THE COLUMBUS TELEGRAM -- THE NEBRASKA BIENE -- CRESTON STATESMAN -- LOOKING GLASS -- MONROE REPUBLICAN -- PLATTE CENTER SIGNAL -- THE HUMPHREY DEMOCRAT -- THE LINDSAY POST

 

155

CHAPTER XI

BENCH AND BAR

PRESENT MEMBERS OF THE BAR

166

CHAPTER XII

THE MEDICAL PROFESSION

PLATTE COUNTY MEDICAL SOCIETY

172

CHAPTER XIII

THE SIMPLE LIFE

SOD AND LOG HOUSES -- BREAKING OUT A FARM -- PIONEER BEDSTEADS -- SHOEMAKERS AND REPAIRERS -- EARLY TIME BLACKSMITHS -- CARPENTERS AND JOINERS -- HARVESTING WILD HAY -- BURIAL OF THE DEAD -- PRAIRIE FIRES -- THE GRASSHOPPER SCOURGE

176

CHAPTER XIV

MILITARY HISTORY

DEATH OF LOGAN FONTENELLE -- COLUMBUS INFANTRY -- THE COLUMBUS GUARDS -- MURDEROUS INDIANS IN PLATTE COUNTY -- THE CIVIL WAR -- PROCLAMATION -- PLATTE COUNTY IN THE WAR -- SECOND NEBRASKA CAVALRY -- WILLIAM BURGESS AND THE PAWNEE RESERVATION

188

CHAPTER XV

SCOUT, INDIAN FIGHTER AND PIONEER CITIZEN

COLUMBUS THE BIRTHPLACE OF BUFFALO BILL'S "WILD WEST SHOW" -- FRED MATHEWS, OVERLAND STAGE DRIVER OF PIONEER DAYS

209

 

6   CONTENTS

CHAPTER XVI

REMINISCENCES

WHEN THE OFFICE SOUGHT THE MAN AND FAILED -- FIRST DISTRICT COURT IN PLATTE COUNTY -- MRS. PAT MURRAY AND THE PAWNEES -- INDIANS CREATE A PANIC AT COLUMBUS -- THE GLADDENITES -- TRAGEDY AT SHINN'S FERRY -- JOHN E. KELLY, POLITICIAN -- MUCH IN LITTLE -- HIS NAME WAS JOHN RECK

216

CHAPTER XVII

REMINISCENCES CONTINUED

IMPRESSIONS OF COLUMBUS AFTER TWENTY YEARS ABSENCE -- COLUMBUS AND PLATTE COUNTY THEN AND NOW

229

CHAPTER XVIII

CLIPPINGS FROM "JOURNAL" OF EARLY DAYS

FARMERS CLUB -- MARCH, 1875, COLUMBUS AS A POINT FOR OUT FITTING AND DEPARTURE FOR BLACK HILLS -- FIRST PLATTE COUNTY FAIR -- PLATTE COUNTY FAIR

 

235

CHAPTER XIX

THIS CHAPTER A LITTLE HISTORY IN ITSELF

SHIPMENTS OF GRAIN -- IMPROVEMENTS IN COLUMBUS -- IMMIGRATION -- REAL ESTATE -- THE LOUP FORK BRIDGE -- PLATTE RIVER BRIDGE -- BRIDGING THE PLATTE -- SETTLEMENT OF THE COUNTY -- SCHOOL INTERESTS -- LOUP RIVER BRIDGE TO BE FINISHED NEXT SATURDAY -- PRAIRIE FIRES -- STEARNS PRAIRIE -- LOOKING GLASS VALLEY -- THE LOUP BREAK

245

CHAPTER XX

COLUMBUS

THE FIRST BUILDING -- COLUMBUS INCORPORATED AS A TOWN -- AN ACT TO INCORPORATE THE TOWN OF COLUMBUS -- COLUMBUS ABSORBS A RIVAL TOWN -- BECOMES A CITY OF THE SECOND CLASS -- CITY HALL -- FIRE DEPARTMENT -- FIRST ANNUAL BALL OF THE FIRE COMPANIES -- FIRE DEPARTMENT COVERS ITSELF WITH GLORY -- WATERWORKS SYSTEM -- SEWERAGE -- MUNICIPAL SEWERS -- PAVING -- ELECTRIC LIGHTS -- GAS COMPANY -- BELL TELEPHONE COMPANY -- INDEPENDENT TELEPHONE COMPANY -- MAYORS AND CLERKS FROM 1865 TO 1915 -- MAYOR -- CLERK -- COLUMBUS TOWNSHIP

260

 

CONTENTS   7

CHAPTER XXI

COLUMBUS CONTINUED

POSTOFFICE -- HOSTELRIES -- AMERICAN HOTEL -- THE HAMMOND HOUSE -- THE CLOTHER HOUSE -- GRAND PACIFIC HOTEL -- THURSTON HOTEL -- THE EVANS -- AMUSEMENT PLACES -- INDUSTRIES PAST AND PRESENT -- BANKS -- THE COLUMBUS STATE BANK -- COMMERCIAL NATIONAL BANK -- FIRST NATIONAL BANK -- THE GERMAN NATIONAL BANK -- YOUNG MEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION -- AMOUNT SUBSCRIBED BY MARCH 20, 1907 -- BUSINESS MEN'S CLUB -- THE HISTORY OF THE COLUMBUS PUBLIC LIBRARY -- FRATERNAL ORGANIZATIONS -- GRAND ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC -- OLD SETTLERS ASSOCIATION -- PLATTE COUNTY'S THIRTEENTH BIRTHDAY -- COLUMBUS MAENNERCHOR

280

 

CHAPTER XXII

EARLY COLUMBUS NOT DEVOID OF AMBITION

308

CHAPTER XXIII

SHELL CREEK TOWNSHIP

DEAD AT LAST -- REMINISCENCES OF SHELL CREEK, BY JOHN WALKER

311

CHAPTER XXIV

OCONEE TOWNSHIP

MONROE -- SOME OF THE FIRST COMERS -- POSTOFFICE -- THE BANK OF MONROE -- CHURCHES -- THE SEED GROWING INDUSTRY AT MONROE -- VILLAGE OF OCONEE -- POSTOFFICE

319

CHAPTER XXV

GRANVILLE TOWNSHIP

HUMPHREY -- CITY HALL -- ELECTRIC LIGHTS -- WATERWORKS SYSTEM -- FIRE DEPARTMENT -- ENGINE COMPANY NO. 1 -- CHURCHES (Catholic) -- METHODIST EPISCOPAL -- PRESBYTERIAN -- GERMAN BAPTIST -- FINANCIAL -- POSTOFFICE -- OLD SETTLER RECOUNTS SOME REMINISCENCES OF EARLY DAYS -- CORNLEA -- POSTOFFICE -- FINANCIAL

330

 

8   CONTENTS

CHAPTER XXVI

ST. BERNARD TOWNSHIP

ST. BERNARD -- LINDSAY -- POSTOFFICE -- FIRE DEPARTMENT -- WATER WORKS -- ELECTRIC LIGHTS -- FINANCIAL -- FARMERS AND MERCHANTS BANK -- CHURCHES -- HOLY FAMILY CATHOLIC CHURCH

344

CHAPTER XXVII

LOST CREEK TOWNSHIP

PLATTE CENTER -- POSTOFFICE -- WATERWORKS -- ELECTRIC LIGHTS -- FIRE DEPARTMENT -- BANKS -- SCHOOLS -- CHURCHES

353

CHAPTER XXVIII

CRESTON TOWNSHIP

TOWN OF CRESTON -- POSTOFFICE -- SCHOOLS -- CITIZENS STATE BANK -- TOWN HALL -- WATERWORKS -- CHURCHES -- PRESBYTERIAN -- BAPTIST -- FRATERNAL ORDERS

362

CHAPTER XXIX

BUTLER TOWNSHIP

DUNCAN -- DUNCAN INCORPORATED -- POSTOFFICE

371

CHAPTER XXX

BURROWS TOWNSHIP

TARNOV

377

CHAPTER XXXI

MONROE TOWNSHIP

BISMARK TOWNSHIP -- SHERMAN TOWNSHIP -- JOLIET TOWNSHIP -- LOUP TOWNSHIP

380

CHAPTER XXXII

GRAND PRAIRIE TOWNSHIP

WOODVILLE TOWNSHIP -- HUMPHREY TOWNSHIP -- WALKER TOWNSHIP

386

CHAPTER XXXIII

THE CAUSE OF TEMPERANCE

RED RIBBON MOVEMENT -- THE FIRST PICTURE TAKER -- PARTITION OF TOWNSHIPS -- INFORMATION -- DESCRIPTION OF TOWNSHIPS

393

INDEX TO PHOTOGRAPHS

Founders of Columbus

John P. Becker
John C. Wolfel
Mrs. John C. Wolfel
Charles Bremer
John Browner
Jacob Gruter
Jacob Louis
Anthony Voll
Michael Smith
Fred Gottschalk
John Rickly
Vincent Kummer
Henry Lusche
Carl Reinke

46

St. Bonaventure's Church, Columbus

134

Interior of St. Bonaventure's Church, Columbus

136

A group of Columbus Churches (Presbyterian,Catholic,Congregational, Baptist, Methodist Episcopal, Episcopal,German Lutheran and German Evangelical)

140

Views in Columbus (Third Ward School, Second Ward School, High School, St. Francis Academy, Y.M.C.A.Building)

152

Residence of Dr. William S. Evans, Columbus

172

Residence of Dr. Carroll D. Evans, Columbus

174

An Early Day Sod Church in Nebraska

178

Post Office, Columbus

280

Union Pacific Depot, Columbus

281

High School, Monroe

322

New Steel Wagon Bridge, Monroe

323

Presbyterian Church, Monroe

324

Methodist Church, Monroe

325

Views of the Seed Growing Industry, Monroe

326

Public School and Grounds, Humphrey

332

St. Francis School, Humphrey

333

Methodist Church, Humphrey

338

Baptist Church, Humphrey

339

St. Francis Church and Monastery, Humphrey

340

missing illustration

344

Holy Family Church and School, and Sisters' Home, Lindsay

350

Holy Family School, Lindsay

351

View of Platte Center in 1888

354

High School, Platte Center

356

Bird's-Eye View of Platte Center

357

Farmer's State Bank, Platte Center

358

Street Scene in Platte Center

359

St. Joseph's Church, Platte Center

360

St. Joseph's School, Platte Center

361

German Evangelical Lutheran Church, Bismark Township

382

German Evangelical Lutheran School, Bismark Township

383

Two Views of Flowing Well on Adolf F.Groteluschen's Farm in Sherman Township

384

Evangelical Zion's Church, Grand Prairie Township

388

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