Past & Present of Platte County, Nebraska - Volume II


 

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mation, owing to the care and labor which he bestows upon it. He is thoroughly progressive in his farm work and upon his place are lacking none of the accessories and conveniences of a model farm property. In 1904 he built large barns and in 1905 he erected his present residence, which is a very modern and attractive country place. In 1914 he gave up the hard work of the fields, turning over the management and cultivation of the farm to his sons.

  Mr. Cooney has been married twice. In Chicago he wedded Miss Nora Kearney, who passed away in 1890, after he had located on his present farm. To them were born four children, as follows: John, who is engaged in farming in Lost Creek township; Frank, an agriculturist residing at Pinebluff, Wyoming; Elizabeth, living in Chicago; and Genevieve, who is deceased. In 1892 Mr. Cooney was again married, his second union being with Miss Jennie Macken, of Lost Creek township, by whom he has the following children: Cyril, a farmer residing in Montana; Alice, a school teacher of District No. 17, Lost Creek township; and Mary, Walter, Alvin and Irene, all at home.

  Mr. Cooney votes with the democratic party and fearlessly espouses his honest convictions. He is a member of the Platte Center Catholic church, as are all of his family, and he and his son Frank belong to Columbus Council of the Knights of Columbus, while the father has membership with the Modern Woodmen of America at Platte Center and is a member of the Guarantee Fund Life Association of Omaha. He has filled the office of town clerk for four years and has given active aid and support to many measures and movements for the general good, being regarded as one of the worthy citizens and highly respected residents of Burrows township. He may truly be called a self-made man, for he has always depended entirely upon his own resources since starting out for himself, and it is because he has not been afraid of hard work but has displayed diligence and determination that he is now numbered among the men of affluence in Platte county.


M. BRUGGER.

  M. Brugger, president of the Columbus State Bank, has through the steps of an orderly progression reached his present position of trust and responsibility in business circles. He is alert, enterprising and energetic, readily recognizes the opportunities of modern life and improves his chances to the benefit of his individual fortunes and to the advancement of the public welfare. Mr. Brugger is of Swiss birth and ancestry. He was born at Meyringen, in the canton of Bern on the 27th of November, 1854, his parents being John and Elizabeth (Zwald) Brugger, who in the year 1872 left the land of the Alps and sailed for the new world. In l874 they became residents of Platte county, Nebraska. The paternal grandfather was a Swiss soldier in the army of Napoleon at the battle of Waterloo. John Brugger departed this life in 1900 and his wife died in 1876.

  M. Brugger, whose name introduces this review, acquired his education in the schools of Switzerland and upon becoming a resident of Platte county, Nebraska, at the age of twenty years, he took up the profession of teaching, which he followed until 1884, being recognized as one of the successful early educators of the county. He next entered the Columbus State Bank in the position of bookkeeper and gradually

 M. BRUGGER

 

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worked his way upward until he was made cashier in 1894 and was chosen for the presidency in 1903, since which time he has been the chief executive head of the institution. He is a very progressive business man, watchful of opportunities, which he improves to good advantage, and he has made the institution of which he is the president one of the strongest financial institutions of his part of the state.

  In June, 1884, at Columbus, Mr. Brugger was united in marriage to Miss Mathilda Stenger, a daughter of Martin Stenger, and they have two sons, Albert and Melvin, who are mining engineers and graduates of the Colorado School of Mines. The former is now following his profession in central Africa, and the latter in old Mexico. The three daughters of the family are: Elsie, Helen and Florence.

  The family attend the Congregational church, of which Mr. Brugger is an active and earnest member. Fraternally he is a Master Mason and his life measures up to the standards which constitute the basic elements of church and lodge. He has served on the school board of Columbus for many years, and the cause of education finds in him a stalwart champion. He is himself highly educated, having gained that broad culture which comes from wide reading and study of the questions of the day as viewed in the light of history and experience. In politics he is independent but is a stalwart temperance worker, and, in fact, his influence is always on the side of those uplifting regenerative forces which count most in human progress and in the world's civilization.


WILLIAM SHERMAN DIXON.

  William Sherman Dixon owns and cultivates a farm adjoining Humphrey, comprising fifty-seven acres of rich and productive land. He has been a resident of Platte county since 1886, arriving here when a young man of about twenty-one years. His birth occurred in Marshall county, Illinois, October 21, 1865, his parents being John and Margaret (McVicker) Dixon, natives of West Virginia and Illinois respectively. The father was a farmer by occupation and in early life went to Illinois, purchasing land in Marshall county, where he continued to engage in general agricultural pursuits until his life's labors were ended in death in 1884. He had long survived his wife, who passed away in 1867.

  William S. Dixon was reared in the usual manner of farm lads, spending his boyhood and youth in Marshall county. He was only two years of age at the time of his mother's death, when he went to live with his grandparents, with whom he remained until fourteen years of age. He then returned home and lived with his father until the latter's death in 1884, assisting him in the work of the fields and becoming familiar with every department of farm labor. At the father's death he and his brother took charge of the home place, which they cultivated for two years or until William S. Dixon attained his majority, when they sold the farm and divided the estate. In 1886 William S. Dixon came to Platte county and invested in eighty acres of land in Humphrey township, upon which he took up his abode, bending his energies to the further development and improvement of that place for ten years. He then sold out and went a mile south, where he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land which he further developed and cultivated until 1913. He then rented that farm and removed to his present place, which is a tract of fifty-seven acres

 

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adjoining the corporation limits of Humphrey. He is now pleasantly located here, his home being conveniently situated just outside the city limits, while the place is supplied with many modern improvements, including an attractive residence. He still retains the ownership of his other farm and derives from it a good rental.

  On the 21st of October, 1891, Mr. Dixon was united in marriage to Miss Clara F. Morris, her parents being Bluford and Sarah (McPherson) Morris, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Dodgeville, Wisconsin. They came to this county from Wisconsin in an emigrant wagon in 1872, taking up their abode among the first settlers here. Mr. Morris took up a homestead claim and cultivated the same during the remainder of his life, carrying on general agricultural pursuits with gratifying success. During the period of the Civil war he served for three years as a member of Company F, Third Wisconsin Regiment. His demise occurred in 1908, while his wife was called to her final rest on the 8th of June, 1911. To Mr. and Mrs. Dixon have been born three children, as follows: Lester B., whose natal day was July 1, 1892; Neva E., born June 15, 1897; and William S., whose birth occurred September 15, 1900.

  Mr. Dixon maintains an independent attitude upon political questions and has never been an aspirant for public office, although he served for two years as supervisor of Humphrey township. He belongs to the Highlanders lodge and is a member of the Methodist church, to which he loyally adheres. He has many sterling traits of character, manifest in his patriotic citizenship, his reliability in business and his faithfulness in friendship--qualities which have gained for him the warm and well merited regard of his fellow citizens.


HENRY GASS.

  Henry Gass is a pioneer citizen and business man of Columbus, having been continuously identified with its interests for the past forty-five years. In fact when he came here the business and most of the residence district was on the south side of the city but as the town grew business houses began to spring up on the north side, which is now the prominent business center, and in 1912 Mr. Gass erected a modern and up-to-date two story brick building, in which he is successfully conducting a furniture and undertaking establishment, which would do credit to a city of much larger size. Mr. Gass is one who came from foreign lands to become prominent in business circles here, for his birth occurred in Switzerland on the 13th of May, 1844. His parents were Christian and Anna (Tiesin) Gass, who were likewise natives of the land of the Alps, and there spent their entire lives.

  Henry Gass remained in his native country to the age of twenty-four years, having in the meantime acquired his education in the public schools there. It was at that period in his life, in 1868, that he set sail for the United States and, landing in New York city, he there remained for a time. He then sought the opportunities of the west, and on the 2d of February, 1870, arrived in Columbus, Nebraska, which was at that time a mere village and gave little promise of becoming a city of its present proportions. For a year thereafter he worked at the carpenter's trade and then opened a cabinetmaker's shop and also engaged in the undertaking business, being the pioneer in that line in the city. In 1878 he added a stock

 

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of furniture. Success was assured from the beginning and as the business grew he kept adding to his stock and eventually became the proprietor of three stores located in various parts of the city, his first location being on the south side. Eventually business moved to the north and Mr. Gass was one of the first to open a store in that part of the city. As the years passed his business grew to large proportions and in 1912 he erected a modern brick building on the main thoroughfare. His store is conveniently arranged for the handling of his large stock of furniture and his large display windows are always fitted up in most attractive style. He is also engaged in the undertaking business, doing practically all the work in that line not only in his home city but in the surrounding districts. He has made a close study of this business and is always prepared to answer all calls for his services and to meet the demands of the public, keeping on hand a large line of caskets and burial supplies. His success is marked and his business methods are of interest to the commercial world, for he is now at the head of one of the largest and most important enterprises in Platte county.

  Mr. Gass was married in Rock Island, Illinois, in August, 1872, to Miss Elizabeth Smedt, and their living children are: Samuel, who wedded Winnie Higgins; Henry, who wedded Sophie Kaufman, both sons residing in Columbus; and Rosina. The deceased members of their family are: Emily, who became the wife of August Merz, and both are deceased, the daughter passing away in June, 1911; Walter, who died at the age of seven years; Albert, who died when but a few months old; and two sons who died unnamed.

  In polities Mr. Gass is a democrat, and he has been identified with the German Reformed church since 1874. He has also for the past thirty-seven years been a member of the Maennerchor Society, which is one of the largest and most prominent social organizations of the city. His enterprising and progressive spirit has made him a typical American in every sense of the word. He has never taken part in public affairs, but, modest and unassuming, his time has been devoted to his family and his business. He has learned well the lessons of life and has put them to practical account, and his establishment is the expression of himself, his ideals, his character and his quiet, persistent industry and ability.


ROY S. PALMER.

  Roy S. Palmer is a member of the firm of Palmer & Berger, although before he was joined by his partner in 1912 he had conducted the business alone for eight years. In addition to merchant tailoring the firm conduct a cleaning, dyeing and repairing establishment and a laundry business and the enterprise and energy with which Mr. Palmer manages his interests constitute important features in his growing success. He was born in Glenwood, Iowa, December 17, 1869, a son of Thomas G. and Jane Palmer, who in the year 1858 became residents of Plattsmouth, Nebraska. The father and his brother David operated the first ferry boat across the Missouri river at that point and also engaged in freighting with a pack train to Denver, Colorado, from 1858 until 1861. Later Thomas G. Palmer engaged in the livery business until 1869, when he removed to Union county, Iowa, and worked at his trade of cabinet making for the Chicago, Burlington & Quiney Railroad Com-

 

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pany until he was injured in an accident. He then went to Labette county, Kansas, where he engaged in farming until 1888. In the latter year he removed to Grand Island, Nebraska, where he passed away in 1889.

  Roy S. Palmer acquired his education in the common schools of Creston, Iowa, and in 1880 began learning the tailors trade at Cherryvale, Kansas. In 1886, he came to Columbus and worked for one season with Carl Kramer. He was afterward away from the city until 1892 but since that year has resided continuously in Columbus, where he has made a creditable position in business circles. For twelve years he worked at his trade with C. A. Lindstrum and in 1904 he established business on his own account and under his own name but in 1912 was joined by Adolph Berger, under the firm style of Palmer & Berger. They conduct a merchant tailoring business, making suits to order, and also do cleaning, dyeing and repairing. They make a specialty of Panama hats and in addition to their other lines conduct a laundry, doing rough dry and family washing. They have secured a liberal and well merited patronage, their business now having reached extensive proportions.

  On the 12th of July, 1893, in Columbus, Nebraska, Mr. Palmer was united in marriage to Miss Frances L. Tiffany, a daughter of Joseph C. and Jennie B. Tiffany, who took up their abode among the pioneer settlers of Platte county in 1868. To our subject and his wife have been born three children, namely: Mildred, who is eighteen years old; and Carl and Mary, who are fourteen and eleven years of age respectively. Mr. Palmer is a republican but without aspiration for office. Fraternally he is connected with the Modern Woodmen of America and the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, while his religious faith is that of the Presbyterian church, to which he loyally adheres, guiding his life by its teachings.


WILLIAM J. HAVERLAND.

  William J. Haverland, who carries on general farming on section 27, Humphrey township, was born in Carroll, Iowa, on the 19th of October, 1879, a son of William and Caroline Haferland, who are mentioned elsewhere in this work. He was reared and educated in his native county, having the usual experiences of the farm lad who divides his time between the work of the fields, the duties of the schoolroom and the pleasures of the playground. He continued on the old home farm with his father until he reached the age of twenty-one years, when he went to work as a traveling salesman for the Case Machine Company. Through the summer and fall months he also engaged in harvesting and still works along that line. At the age of twenty-five years he took charge of the home place and has since largely concentrated his time and energies upon its further development and improvement, cultivating two hundred and forty acres of land, which he has converted into highly productive fields and from which he annually gathers good harvests. The place is situated on section 27, Humphrey township, and constitutes one of the attractive features of the landscape.

  On the 16th of August, 1905, Mr. Haverland was united in marriage to Miss Mary Braun, a daughter of Joseph and Eva (Scheidemantel) Braun. They have become parents of four children: Maurice W., born July 12, 1906; M. Isabella, January 7, 1908; Dorothy, December 12, 1910; and Florence, April 26, 1913.

 

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  Mr. Haverland and his family are adherents of the Catholic faith and he holds membership with the Knights of Columbus. He does not ally himself with any political party but votes independently according to the dictates of his judgment and desires. Analyzing his life, it is seen that his success is the direct and legitimate outcome of persistent, earnest labor.


PETER LUBISCHER.

  Since starting out in life on his own account Peter Lubischer has steadily worked his way upward until he has gained a place among the well-to-do farmers of Granville township, where he now makes his home, owning land on sections 23 and 24. He is a native of Germany, born March 15, 1846, and his parents, Phillip and Anna (Roos) Lubischer, were also natives of that country. The father followed the occupation of farming throughout his entire life and passed away in Germany, December 31, 1885. He had for three decades survived his wife, who died on the 22d of May, 1855.

  Peter Lubischer was reared and educated in Germany, remaining with his parents to the age of thirteen years, when he started out to earn his own living, working as a farm hand. He was afterward employed in factories of that country to the age of twenty-six years, when in 1872 he determined to seek a home in the new world, attracted by the favorable reports which he had heard concerning business conditions and advantages in America. He therefore bade adieu to friends and fatherland and sailed for the United States. For a brief period he resided in Chicago and then went into the country, working as a farm hand until 1878. In that year he returned to Germany to visit his parents, but in 1879 again came to America, securing employment in a brewery at Omaha. He also worked in a lumber and coal yard there, continuing his residence in that city until 1889, when he arrived in Platte community and invested his savings -- the result of his industry and economy--in eighty acres of land on section 23, Granville township. This was the first property which he ever owned and it was with much pleasure that he set about developing and improving the tract. Later he added to it by the purchase of sixty acres adjoining on section 24, and he has since devoted his time and attention to the further development and improvement of his farm of one hundred and forty acres. He has brought his fields to a high state of cultivation and his place presents a neat and thrifty appearance. He is also a stockholder in the Farmers Elevator Company of Humphrey.

  On the 4th of February, 1886, Mr. Lubischer was united in marriage to Miss Catherine Nick, a daughter of Peter and Catherine (Rothenberger) Nick, who were natives of Germany. Mrs. Lubischer was born February 6,1866. Her father was a farmer and never came to the new world, passing away in Germany, September 23, 1898. His wife had died on the 24th of November, 1887. Their daughter Catherine was a young woman of eighteen years when in 1884 she crossed the Atlantic to the United States. She worked out in Omaha, Nebraska, until her marriage and since that time has carefully managed her household interests. To Mr. and Mrs. Lubischer have been born ten children: Annie, the wife of Barney McDermott, a farmer living in Madison county, Nebraska; Catherine, the wife of

 

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William Olmer, who follows farming in Granville township; Sophie, who is engaged in dressmaking and lives at home; Elizabeth, a nurse, residing in Omaha; and John, Mary, Phillip, Monica, Francis and Richard, all yet under the parental roof.

  The religious faith of the family is that of the Catholic church. In his political views Mr. Lubischer is independent, holding himself free from party ties in order that he may vote according to the dictates of his judgment. While he came to America a young man, empty handed, he is today numbered among the substantial farmers of Granville township, his life indicating what may be accomplished when there is the will to dare and to do.


JOSEPH F. DISTERHAUPT.

  Joseph F. Disterhaupt, owner and proprietor of the V. T. Mills of Humphrey, is numbered among the progressive, enterprising and successful business men of his city. He was born in Dodge, Nebraska, February 2, 1875, a son of William and Frances (Karnik) Disterhaupt. The father, a native of Germany, was a carpenter by trade and followed that pursuit in his native land until 1872, when he crossed the Atlantic to America and made his way to Dodge county, Nebraska, where he engaged in farming for many years. His wife is a native of Bohemia, and they are now well known residents of Dodge, Nebraska, where Mr. Disterhaupt is living retired.

  Joseph F. Disterhaupt attended the common schools in his native county and on attaining his majority began farming for himself, purchasing land near Howells, Nebraska, where he carried on general agricultural pursuits for nine years. He then went to Atkinson, Nebraska, where he purchased a stock ranch, continuing there for six years, and on the 9th of May, 1913, he came to Humphrey, trading a half section of land for the mill which he now owns and which was formerly the property of Vanderheiden Brothers, who were operating it at the time. Mr. Disterhaupt at once took charge and has since carried on the business, being now actively and successfully engaged in the manufacture of Winky-eye flour, a high grade product, Cream Loaf flour, also a high grade product, and Teddy Bear flour, a second grade product. He has built up a fine trade throughout this part of Nebraska, having a large sale for the different brands of flour which he makes. He also buys and sells grain, and that branch of his business contributes in considerable measure to his income.

  On the 3d of February, 1896, Mr. Disterhaupt was married to Miss Josephine Tresnak, a daughter of Anton and Anna (Francel) Tresnak. Her father, a native of Bohemia, came to the United States in 1884 and established his home upon a farm near Dodge, Nebraska, where he carried on general agricultural pursuits for some time, but afterward removed to Atkinson, Nebraska, where he is now living. His wife died upon the Dodge county farm in 1895. Mr. and Mrs. Disterhaupt were married in Dodge, Nebraska, by the Rev. Father Brusch, pastor of St. Wensel's Catholic church of that place, and they have become parents of four children: Mary, who was born January 30, 1899; Joseph, born February 3, 1901; Frank, born December 23, 1903; and Eddie, December 22, 1909.

  Mr. and Mrs. Disterhaupt are members of St. Francis Catholic church of

 JOSEPH F. DISTERHAUTPT

 

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Humphrey, and his political allegiance is given to the republican party, which finds in him a stalwart champion. He concentrates his energies, however, upon the operation of the mill and the conduct of the business, in which he is assisted by his eldest son Joseph. Resolution and energy enable him to overcome all difficulties and obstacles in his path and, working his way upward along legitimate business lines, he is now classed with the substantial citizens of Humphrey.


ARTHUR M. GRAY.

  During the past twenty-three years Arthur M. Gray has been actively and successfully identified with mercantile interests of Columbus as proprietor of an up-to-date and well patronized shoe store. His birth occurred in Arlington, Illinois, on the 28th of June, 1869, his parents being Sidney C. and Rowena R. (Ransom) Gray, of whom more extended mention is made on another page of this work in connection with the sketch of Clinton C. Gray, brother of our subject.

  In the acquirement of an education Arthur M. Gray attended high school at Princeton, Illinois, and in 1884 was graduated from the high school in Columbus, Nebraska. Subsequently he spent two years at work on a cattle ranch in this county and was then for three years employed as bookkeeper in the First National Bank of Columbus. In 1892 he embarked in business in association with John Griffin as a dealer in furnishings and shoes, the firm of Griffin & Gray existing for two years or until the senior partner sold out to Sidney C. Gray, the father of our subject, who remained in the business for about a year. Since that time the establishment his been conducted under the name of A. M. Gray, who has built up an extensive and profitable enterprise, being accorded a most enviable patronage. He is a director of the Commercial National Bank of Columbus.

  In November, 1896, in Columbus, Mr. Gray was united in marriage to Miss Clara L. Lehman, her father being George Lehman, an old settler and one of the best known hotel men in the state. To Mr. and Mrs. Gray have been born two children, Arthur M., Jr., and Lucile.

  Mr. Gray gives his political allegiance to the republican party, while his religious faith is that of the Episcopal church. He is a man of marked strength of character, genial disposition and genuine worth and enjoys the unqualified respect and goodwill of his fellowmen.


FRIEDRICH MULLER.

  Friedrich Müller, who carries on general farming on section 28, Bismark township, was born in Hanover, Germany, on the 22d of April, 1849, and spent the first twenty years of his life in the land of his nativity. The favorable reports which reached him concerning America and her opportunities led him to determine to try his fortune in the new world, and in 1869 he bade adieu to friends and native land and at the age of twenty years sailed for the United States with his parents, who established the family home in Dane county, Wisconsin. There they remained for
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two years, at the end of which time they came, in 1871, to Platte county, where the father homesteaded eighty acres, which was the nucleus of our subject's present fine farm. A difficult task awaited them in developing and cultivating the new land, but strenuous labor did not deter them and the persistent, earnest effort which was put forth soon converted the place into rich and productive fields.

  As time passed and Friedrich Müller's financial resources increased he added to his holdings by the purchase of an additional tract of two hundred and forty acres and he has since also bought one hundred and sixty acres in Colfax county, so that now he owns altogether four hundred and eighty acres of rich and valuable land in this part of the state. On his farm stand a comfortable residence and substantial barns and outbuildings. He carries on general farming, including the raising of cattle and hogs, and his business is carefully, wisely and successfully managed.

  On October 23, 1879, Mr. Müller was united in marriage to Miss Magdalena Karlin, and they became the parents of ten children: Martha, now the wife of Frank Aerni, living in this county; Adolph, who married Mary Shutt and is now farming in Bismark township; Louise, the wife of Albert Aerni, farming in this state; Emma, the wife of Edwin Ahrens, living in Bismark township; Carl F., whose home is in Colfax county, Nebraska; Albert, upon the home farm; Minnie, the wife of Alfred Berchtold of Columbus township; Anna, the wife of Edward Ahrens, of Bismark township; Rosa, the wife of Otto Held, of Columbus; and Magdalena, at home. Theirs is a notable family record in that the circle yet remains unbroken by the hand of death.

  Mr. Müller is independent in politics and his religious faith is that of the German Lutheran church. He has never had occasion to regret his determination to establish his home in Nebraska, for, while earnest work awaited him here in the development and improvement of his farm, he has gradually advanced along well defined lines of labor and is now one of the substantial and representative citizens of Platte county.


ANTON VOGEL.

  Anton Vogel, of Columbus, is a retired baker, having in 1912 put aside the active work of the trade in which he had so long been engaged and which brought to him a substantial measure of prosperity. A native of Germany, he was born at Lauda, Baden, in 1860, a son of Anton and Katherine (Kopf) Vogel, in whose family were seven children, of whom three are yet living.

  The son Anton acquired a common-school education in his native land, in which he remained to the age of nineteen years, when in 1879 he came to America to join his brother Marcus, who was a resident of Columbus, Nebraska, and was engaged in the bakery business. In 1880 Anton Vogel secured a position in a bakery in Red Oak, Iowa, where he remained until 1884, and after his return to Columbus he worked for his brother in the bakery for ten years. In 1896 he purchased the business, which he conducted with substantial and growing success for sixteen years, enjoying a large and gratifying patronage. Because of the excellence of his product and the reliability of his business methods he gained a most

 

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gratifying trade and when he retired in 1912 he was the possessor of a substantial capital that had come to him as the direct reward of his labors and careful business management.

  On the 11th of February, 1896, Mr. Vogel was united in marriage to Miss Maggie Schmitz, her father being Joseph Schmitz, an old resident of Platte county, Nebraska. To them was born a daughter, Margaret, who died in April, 1910. In politics Mr. Vogel has always been a democrat but never an active partisan nor an office seeker. He belongs to the Catholic church and contributes generously to its support. He still owns the building now occupied by the Imig Brothers Bakery and he has other property holdings which return to him a good income, enabling him to live retired. He has never had occasion to regret his determination to come to the new world and he found that reports concerning business conditions here had not been exaggerated. He brought with him no false idea that prosperity was to be had for the asking, but he soon demonstrated the fact that in this country there is no bar to progress for the ambitious, energetic young man and as the years passed he gradually worked his way upward, remaining for a long period proprietor of one of the foremost bakery establishments of Platte county.


HARRY H. CRUICKSHANK.

  Harry H. Cruickshank is local manager at Cornlea for the Crowell Lumber & Grain Company. He operates an elevator at Cornlea and controls the business, which under his direction has been steadily growing. He was born in Dodge county, Nebraska, February 27, 1889, a son of James M. and Mary (Davidson) Cruickshank, both of whom were natives of Scotland. After coming to America the father took up railroad work and served as a conductor on the Union Pacific for sixteen years and also for a number of years was with the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad Company. Called to public office, he filled the position of clerk of the district court of Dodge county, Nebraska, at Fremont for eight years, the capability which he displayed in his first term leading to his reelection. With his retirement from office he retired from active business life and was living at North Bend, Nebraska, at the time of his death, which occurred in 1912. His wife had passed away in Dodge county, Nebraska, in 1897. They were people of the highest respectability and enjoyed the friendship and warm regard of all with whom they came in contact. They had a family of five children, namely: George, who is a resident of North Bend, Nebraska; Agnes, living in Omaha; Mary, of Fremont; and Arthur, who also resides in Omaha.

  Harry H. Cruickshank, the youngest of the family, attended the district school in Pleasant Valley township, Dodge county, and also the Fremont graded school and when nineteen years of age he began farming on his father's place. In 1910 he removed to Deuel county, Nebraska, where he carried on general agricultural pursuits for a year. He afterward removed to Snyder, Nebraska, where he remained for two years, acting as local manager of the Farmers Telephone Company and for one year worked in the Snyder Roller Mills. In June, 1914, he came to Cornlea and took charge as manager of the elevator of the Crowell Lumber & Grain

 

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Company. He remains in this connection today and handles annually two hundred and twenty-five car loads of grain. He not only buys and sells grain but also coal and hogs and is in control of an extensive and growing business.

  On the 16th of February, 1910, Mr. Cruickshank was united in marriage to Miss Emma Jones, a daughter of Cassamer and Sarah Jones, both of whom now reside at Uehling, Nebraska, where the former owns and operates a dray line. Mr. and Mrs. Cruickshank have one child, Cecil, born July 13, 1915.

  The parents are members of a Presbyterian church in Dodge county and socially they are highly esteemed wherever known. In politics Mr. Cruickshank is a democrat and fraternally he has connection with the Ancient Order of United Workmen at Snyder, Nebraska. He greatly enjoys athletics and manly outdoor sports and is a member of the Cornlea Baseball Club, while at Snyder, in 1912, he threw Anton Stecker, brother of Joe Stecker, the worlds champion, in three minutes in a wrestling bout. While greatly interested in these things, he never allows them to interfere with his business duties. He is fortunate in possessing character and ability that command respect and the simple weight of his character and ability has carried him into important business relations.


JOSEPH W. SMITH.

  Within a few decades Platte county has been converted from a broad tract of wild prairie land into highly cultivated farms, the productiveness of which is constantly being enhanced by the efforts and labors of a class of energetic and persistent men. Among these is Joseph W. Smith. who makes his home in Granville township. It was in that township that he was born October 13, 1893, a son of Joseph W. and Anna (Lachnit) Smith, the former a native of Holland and the latter of Austria. The father was a fisherman in the old country, but when a young man came to America and took up his abode in Keokuk, Iowa, where he worked for a short time as a laborer. He afterward continued his westward journey to Platte county, Nebraska, where he became the owner of one hundred and sixty acres of land situated on section 36, Granville township. With characteristic energy he set about improving the place and devoted his remaining days to its further cultivation and development, making it a productive and valuable farm. In his passing on the 12th of April, 1902, the community lost a worthy citizen. His widow survives and now makes her home in Humphrey.

  Joseph W. Smith spent his youthful days under the parental roof, meeting with the usual experiences of the farm boy who divides his time between the work of the fields and the acquirement of an education. He attended the district schools and afterward became a pupil in the parochial school at Humphrey. When his textbooks were put aside he became active in the work of the farm, which he now rents from his mother. He is busily engaged in its further cultivation and his labors are responsible for the excellent appearance of the farm, which is a well kept property. His sister Mary acts as his housekeeper. There are six children in the family: William, now a resident of Humphrey; Joseph W.; Mary; Anthony, also living in Humphrey; and Clara and George, who are with their mother.

  Joseph W. Smith is a communicant of the Catholic church and belongs to the

 

PAST AND PRESENT OF PLATTE COUNTY 181

Catholic Order of Foresters, while his political allegiance is given to the democratic party. He has always lived in Platte county, where he has worked steadily and persistently to gain a living and lay up something for the future. Life is to him purposeful and his efforts have brought good results.


A. J. ZELLER.

  A. J. Zeller is now living retired in Creston but for a long period was identified with agricultural pursuits in this state and in the careful conduct of his farming interests won success, whereby he is enabled to rest without further recourse to business affairs to yield him a comfortable living. Born in Bavaria, Germany, his natal day was February 29, 1845, his parents being Conrad and Magdalena (Houge) Zeller, who were also natives of Germany. In early life the parents came to the new world and settled in Trenton, New Jersey. The father was a blacksmith and worked at his trade for a long period in New Jersey hut finally removed to the middle west, settling in Jones county, Iowa, where he lived retired for a considerable period. He then returned to New Jersey, where he passed away in February, 1888, at the age of eighty-seven years, having long survived his wife, who died in 1855.

  A. J. Zeller spent his youthful days in his native country and in New Jersey and acquired a public-school education. He continued with his parents until he attained his majority and then removed westward to Jones county, Iowa, where he rented land for a time. He next purchased one hundred and sixty acres and thereon followed general farming until 1882, when he removed to Nebraska, settling in Platte county. He purchased three hundred and twenty acres on section 2, Creston township, and with characteristic energy began to till the soil, for at that period not a furrow had been turned nor an improvement made upon the place. He afterward rented the land and has continued to lease it to the present time. Having purchased two hundred acres just across the line in Madison county, he also rents that property and derives therefrom a good income. He also had eighty acres more in Creston township, adjoining the town, which he gave to his son. Erecting a fine residence in Creston, he has since made his home in the city and is widely and favorably known there, taking an active and helpful interest in all affairs calculated to benefit the community.

  On November 29, 1869, Mr. Zeller was united in marriage to Miss Monica Wolf, a daughter of Kadros and Christina (Zeller) Wolf, who were natives of Germany. They came from Germany in early life and settled in New York, where the father soon afterward passed away, his death occurring in 1852. The mother married again and became a resident of St. Louis. Her second husband died in that city, after which she and her children went to Jones county, Iowa, where she now makes her home. She has reached the advanced age of eighty-eight years. Mr. and Mrs. Zeller have become the parents of five children: Mary M., the wife of S. T. Fleming, a banker of Creston; Addie, the wife of Henry Cashman, living with her father; Fred, a farmer of Creston township; Frank, who was a twin brother of Fred and died in 1892; and Ida, who was a twin sister of Addie and died in January, 1875.

 

182PAST AND PRESENT OF PLATTE COUNTY

  In his political views Mr. Zeller has always been an earnest democrat and has served on the town board in Creston but otherwise has not held nor sought public office. He belongs to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and to the Methodist church, and an honorable, upright life has won for him the high regard of all with whom he has been brought in contact, while in business affairs his capable management and wise investments have gained for him substantial and well merited prosperity.


JAMES G. LEE

  Business enterprise in Platte Center finds a worthy representative in James G. Lee, who is conducting a restaurant there and who closely and carefully watches over his business, seeking success along well defined lines of trade. Nebraska claims him as a native son, for his birth occurred upon a farm near Schuyler on the 11th of November, 1885. His parents, Patrick and Anna Lee, were early settlers of Colfax county and the father is now living at Lee this state, but the mother is deceased. He pursued his education in the schools of Colfax county, dividing his time between the mastery of the lessons therein taught and farm work in the fields as he assisted his father in cultivating the home place. He was actively identified with farming in Colfax county until 1907, when at the age of twenty-two years he removed to Platte county, where for a time he carried on farm work. Later he took up his abode in Platte Center and engaged in the dray and transfer business but eventually purchased the restaurant of which he is now proprietor. He caters to the wishes of the people, supplies his table with the best the market affords and is now enjoying a liberal patronage.

  On the 25th of October, 1905, Mr. Lee was united in marriage to Miss Josephine Hennessy, a daughter of John and Mary Hennessy of Platte Center. They have one son, James Francis Ronald, who was born on the 11th of April, 1910. Mr. and Mrs. Lee are communicants of the Catholic faith and he is a democrat in his political views. His life has been quietly passed without any spectacular phases or connections. He has depended upon business for the attainment of success, and close application and indefatigable energy have been used as the salient features to win for him a comfortable competence.


JOHN RUDOLPH LUSCHEN.

  John Rudolph Luschen is identified with business interests of Columbus as proprietor of a large and well appointed grocery establishment. His birth occurred at Shellcreek, Colfax county, Nebraska, on the 8th of November, 1873, his parents being John H. and Anna Maria (Borchers) Luschen, both of whom were natives of Saage, Oldenburg, Germany, and were married at Gross Kneten, in the grand duchy of Oldenburg. The father, born in 1833, emigrated to the United States in August, 1869, and took up his abode at Shellcreek, Colfax county, Nebraska, where he still makes his home. The mother passed away on the 1st of June, 1900.

 

PAST AND PRESENT OF PLATTE COUNTY 183

  John H. Lütjelüschen, the grandfather of our subject, emigrated to America in company with John H. Lütjelüschen and passed away in 1876 when eighty-eight years of age, while his wife died at the age of seventy-six years. He was the oldest man buried in Platte cemetery.

  John Rudolph Luschen attended school at the old Becker & Welch mill in Shell Creek township and after putting aside his textbooks followed farming until 1900. In that year he came to Columbus, Nebraska, and he engaged in the stock business, buying cattle, etc., until 1908. Subsequently he returned to his farm in this county, carrying on agricultural pursuits for three years or until 1913, when he returned to Columbus and purchased a grocery store which he has since conducted. He carries an extensive line of staple and fancy groceries and is accorded a most gratifying patronage.

  On the 12th of March, 1908, in Columbus, Nebraska, Mr. Luschen was united in marriage to Miss Martha Catharine Zollars, a daughter of David Zollars. They have three children, namely: Lillian W., Alice Gertrude and Norris Wade. In politics Mr. Luschen is a progressive republican and he has twice been chairman of the republican central committee. He has also taken an active part in state politics. He is a public-spirited and enterprising citizen and an energetic and capable business man, and his worth is widely acknowledged.


JACOB GLUR.

  On the list of Platte county's honored dead appears the name of Jacob Glur, who was a self-made man, strong and resourceful in business, active and enterprising in his connection with the public. He was born May 24, 1856, in the canton of Bern, Switzerland, and there spent the days of his boyhood and youth, coming to the new world when a man of twenty-seven years. He made the voyage across the Atlantic in 1883, accompanied by his sister, Caroline, and immediately after reaching the American coast traveled over the continent to Columbus, Platte county. His sister became the wife of Max Scherrer, of Columbus, who was at that time operating a dairy in the city. Mr. Glur went west to California, where he remained for a time and later traveled north to Oregon and on to Washington, where he engaged in herding sheep. He was also employed in a logging camp but after the close of his sojourn in the northwest he returned to Platte county, Nebraska, in October, 1884, and established cement works, making the enterprise one of continued and substantial success. He put in nearly all of the cement walks in and around Columbus and also built cement walks in some of the smaller towns in this part of the state. He had a well equipped plant supplied with the latest improved machinery to facilitate the work, and as the years passed he carefully managed his interests so that his product found a ready sale upon the market. He continued active in the business until his death, which occurred December 22, 1913.

  On the 1st of January, 1885, Mr. Glur was united in marriage to Miss Anna Urech, who was born December 27, 1860, her parents being John and Elizabeth Urech, of Canton Aargau, Switzerland. In June, 1884, she came alone to the new world and by her marriage she has become the mother of nine children, as

 

184PAST AND PRESENT OF PLATTE COUNTY

follows: Elizabeth, who is the wife of John Egger, of this county; Bertha, at home; Anna, who gave her hand in marriage to William Ernst, of Columbus, Nebraska; Minnie, who wedded T. F. Askew, of Ogden, Utah; John and Rosa, both at home; Lena, the wife of Lewis Criss, of Benedict, Nebraska; and Jacob and Carl, also at home.

  Mr. Glur was a democrat in his political views and kept well informed concerning the questions and issues of the day. He belonged also to the Maennerchor Society, to the Swiss Verein and to the Modern Woodmen camp. In all of these organizations he was popular, for he had the faculty of making friends owing to his kindly spirit and many good qualities. He never regretted his determination to come to the new world, for here he found good business opportunities and in their utilization worked his way steadily upward' so that his daily toil returned to him a good living.


GEORGE BORCHER.

  The population of Columbus includes a large percentage of retired farmers -- men who have recognized and improved the agricultural advantages offered by Platte county and who have gained thereby substantial success. For a considerable period George Borcher carried on general agricultural pursuits and became the owner of one hundred and twenty acres of land. He belongs to the German colony that came from Oldenburg, his birth having there occurred on the 21st of July, 1852. His parents were John and Anna (Eilis) Borcher, who were also natives of the fatherland. The former was a laborer and never came to the United States, his death occurring in Germany, in 1867, when he had reached the age of forty-nine years.

  George Borcher was the third in order of birth in a family of five children. After attending school in his native country he worked as a farm hand there until he came to the United States, settling in Macon county, Illinois, in 1884. Again he secured employment on a farm, remaining in that locality until 1886, when he removed to Shelby county, Iowa, living near Defiance. He was identified with farming interests of that locality until 1892, which year witnessed his arrival in Platte county. He first rented land near Tarnov in Burrows township but after three years removed to the vicinity of Platte Center, where he rented and occupied a farm for six years. During all this time he was carefully saving his earnings and at length his industry and economy enabled him to purchase land. He then invested in one hundred and twenty acres in Sherman township and carried on general agricultural pursuits in most successful manner until he put aside business cares, removing to Columbus in 1914.

  In 1885 Mr. Borcher wedded Miss Lena Hulsebus, who was born in Friesland. Germany, a daughter of Peter and Mary (Prehm) Hulsebus. Her father owned a small tract of land and engaged in farming in Germany but before his marriage was a sailor and as a member of the crew of old-time sailing vessels visited many of the larger seaports of the world. Of the Baptist church he was an active member. Mr. and Mrs. Borcher have become parents of a daughter and son: Mary, the wife of August Woodlich by whom she has one child, George; and John, who is

 GEORGE BORCHER AND FAMILY

 

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