Past & Present of Platte County, Nebraska - Volume II


 

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reached the age of twenty-one years, when, thinking to find other pursuits more congenial than the life of the agriculturist, he turned his attention to banking, accepting the position of bookkeeper in the First National Bank at Schuyler where he remained for seven months. On the 14th of September, 1912, he became cashier of the Cornlea State Bank and still remains in that position. This institution is capitalized for fifteen thousand dollars and has deposits amounting to one hundred and thirty-one thousand five hundred dollars. Mr. Kelly is also a member of the board of directors of this bank and his efforts have been a strong element in advancing its success, for he is a popular official. He was also one of the organizers and is the president of the Farmers State Bank of Humphrey. His associates in the Cornlea bank are: D. W. Killeen, of Schuyler, president; and Nicholas J. Hemmer, of Cornlea, vice president.

  Mr. Kelly is a member of the Catholic church at Cornlea and holds membership with the Knights of Columbus and with the Catholic Order of Foresters at Humphrey. He votes with the democratic party and seeks to secure its success but has little time or opportunity to take active part in politics. He stands, however, for progressiveness in citizenship and is interested in all that pertains to the upbuilding and improvement of the town.


LEANDER GERRARD.

  Honored and respected by all, there has been no citizen in Columbus who has occupied a more enviable position in public regard than Leander Gerrard, not alone by reason of the success which he achieved but also owing to the honorable, straightforward policy which he ever followed from the time when he became connected with the interests of the city in the pioneer period until his death in recent years. It was characteristic of him that he carried forward to successful completion whatever he undertook, and while advancing individual success he also contributed in substantial measure to public prosperity.

  Mr. Gerrard was a native of England, his birth having occurred in the city of Manchester on the 31st of August, 1837, his parents being Joseph and Adeline Gerrard who were residents of New England, being on a visit to England at the time of the birth of their son. Manchester, however, was the old home of the family. It was there that the paternal grandfather of Leander Gerrard was born and reared. He was a very intelligent man, liberal educational advantages having been accorded him, and he became a prosperous cotton manufacturer of Manchester, in which city he spent his entire life. His son, Joseph Gerrard, also born in Manchester and accorded liberal educational opportunities, became identified with his father's business and when a young man went to New York, where he bought raw cotton, which he shipped to England and afterward sold the manufactured product in America. In 1825 he wedded Adeline Allen, of New Bedford, Massachusetts, who was a member of a wealthy Quaker family and came of Mayflower stock. While in the east Joseph Gerrard was a member of the famous Cobden Club. In the year 1838 he removed westward with his family, settling in Rock Island, where he remained until 1858 and then came to Monroe, Platte county, Nebraska. He was engaged in farming and other pursuits in this county, where he

 LEANDER GERRARD

 

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passed away in 1870, while his wife, surviving him for more than a quarter of a century, died in 1896.

  Leander Gerrard pursued his education in the schools of Rock Island, Illinois, and made his initial step in the business world in that city as a clerk in a clothing store. In 1855, when about eighteen years of age, he went to Des Moines, Iowa, where for one year he clerked in a bank, and in 1856 he removed to Omaha, Nebraska, where he entered the law office of J. M. Newton, with whom he continued until 1858. During one year of this time he was in partnership with Mr. Newton in the conduct of a land agency and during that period Mr. Gerrard, in company with others, founded the city of Fremont, Nebraska. In 1857 he removed to Monroe county, Nebraska, which he aided in organizing and also laid out the town of Monroe. At a subsequent date a part of Monroe county was divided and became Platte county. Mr. Gerrard was engaged in trading with the Indians of the Pawnee reservation from 1860 until 1866 and also conducted a trading post and did a freighting business between Fort Kearney and Monroe.

  The following year Mr. Gerrard removed to Columbus, where he resided until his death, and in 1867 he entered upon the practice of law and the conduct of a real-estate business. From that time forward he figured as one of the most prominent, active and influential residents of Platte county and his efforts contributed in large measure to the upbuilding of its material interests and the utilization of its natural resources. For many years he was a member of the firm of Whitmoyer, Gerrard & Post, attorneys at law, the firm occupying a very prominent position at the bar. Mr. Gerrard's mind was naturally analytical, logical and inductive, his reasoning was clear, his arguments sound and his success was the natural sequence of marked ability in the path of his chosen profession. Moreover, he was resourceful and active in other fields. In 1871 he became senior partner in the firm of Gerrard & Reed, which established a private bank of which he continued president until his death. This was conducted as a private banking institution until 1875 and was then merged into the Columbus State Bank, of which Mr. Gerrard was the first president. He also became heavily interested in land, making judicious investment in property and carrying on farming and stock-raising on an extensive scale. His discrimination was keen and he was seldom, if ever, at fault in matters of business judgment.

  On the 31st of May, 1870, Mr. Gerrard was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Caroline Weaver, who was born in Columbus, Ohio, April 5, 1852, her parents being Michael and Dorothea (Heckman) Weaver. The father's birth occurred in Wurtemberg, Germany, January 7, 1828, while the mother was born in Bavaria, Germany, January 28, 1830. Michael Weaver, who was a carpenter by trade and became a pioneer settler of Platte county, passed away in the year 1900. To Mr. and Mrs. Gerrard were born four children, namely: Clarence L., who is the inventor of a flour bleacher; Ernest A.; Phoebe; and Grace.

  The death of Mr. Gerrard occurred March 5, 1913, and because of his prominence proved not only a personal bereavement to his many friends but a public misfortune as well. He had been connected with many movements which had direct bearing upon the welfare and upbuilding of city and state. In 1858 he became one of the organizers of the republican party in Nebraska and he served as a member of the first state legislature. He was chairman of the first republican state convention, which was held at Plattsmouth, and from that time forward was actively

 

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identified with shaping the policy and promoting the interests of his party. In 1870 and 1871 he was a member of the state senate and was the author of the Herd law, protecting agricultural interests. In the latter year he received appointment from President Grant to the position of United States district attorney but refused to accept the office. He had been a delegate to the national republican convention which nominated Grant for the presidency and he was always a delegate to the state conventions of his party, but he had little aspiration in the way of office seeking, regarding the pursuits of private life as in themselves abundantly worthy of his best efforts. That he was a most valued and honored citizen is indicated in the glowing resolutions which were passed by the state senate following his demise. He was ever faultless in honor, fearless in conduct and stainless in reputation and his record reflected credit upon the state which honored him. Mrs. Gerrard still makes her home in Columbus, where she is active in temperance work and where she occupies the position of president of the Women's Club. She is most highly esteemed in social circles and shared with her husband in the respect which was everywhere tendered him.


FRED BONING.

  Fred Boning, a well-to-do farmer residing on section 9, Creston township, was born in Germany on the 7th of October, 1859, a son of John H. and Catherine (Hillen) Boning, also natives of that country. The father followed farming throughout his entire active life and passed away in the fatherland in 1893. The mother survived for six years, dying in 1899.

  Fred Boning grew to manhood under the parental roof and received his education in the schools of his native land. He remained with his parents until he reached the age of twenty-two years, or until 1882, when he emigrated to America and made his way to Platte county, Nebraska. For ten years he was employed as a farm hand and during that time carefully saved his money and was at length able to purchase one hundred and twenty acres of land in Sherman township. He took up his residence thereon and improved and operated the place for thirteen years, or until 1905, when he sold out and removed to Creston township, buying one hundred and sixty acres on section 9, where he has since resided. He has not only improved that quarter section but he has bought additional land and now owns three hundred and twenty acres, which he cultivates. He engages in stock-raising to a considerable extent, feeding a carload of cattle and two carloads of hogs per year. His farm work is well managed, and he receives a gratifying income from his land. He also owns stock in the Farmers Elevator Company of Creston.

  Mr. Boning was married on the 17th of May, 1892, to Miss Johanna Ritterhoff, who was born in Germany, November 24, 1864, a daughter of Louis and Louisa Ritterhoff, likewise natives of Germany. The father devoted his life to farming and passed away in Germany, as did the mother. Mrs. Boning died on the 22d of May, 1908, after a short illness. She was the mother of four children, namely: Herman, born May 16, 1893; Anna, June 30, 1894; Louis, July 1, 1896; and Clara, June 12, 1898.

  Mr. Boning is a republican in his political belief and his religious faith is that

 

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of the Lutheran church. He has never regretted his decision to come to this country, for here he has found opportunities through the utilization of which he has gained a gratifying measure of success. He has thoroughly identified his interests with those of Platte county and can be depended upon to further the public good in any way possible.


PETER NOONAN.

  Peter Noonan is the proprietor of the Walnut Grove Farm, his home being situated on section 8, Burrows township. His is a valuable property, his landed possessions aggregating eight hundred and sixty-one acres, all acquired through his intelligently directed industry and perseverance combined with sound business judgment. He was born in Ireland, March 13, 1849, a son of James and Bridget (Welch) Noonan, who were also natives of the same country. The father devoted his life to farming and always remained a resident of the Emerald isle, there passing away in 1886, after having survived his wife for twenty-one years, her death occurring in 1865.

  The youthful days of Peter Noonan were spent in Ireland and England, and he remained with his parents until he attained his majority. But the opportunities of the new world attracted him and in 1873, when a young man of twenty-four years, he sailed for America, establishing his home in New Jersey at a place called Fort Lee. There he largely devoted his time to wood chopping until the year 1874, when he came to Nebraska, settling in Platte county. Here he secured a homestead claim of eighty acres and at once began to develop the then unbroken prairie and improve his farm by the erection of the necessary buildings. His business affairs were carefully and systematically directed and brought to him growing success, enabling him to add to his possessions by purchase from time to time until he is now the owner of eight hundred and sixty-one acres of rich and valuable land. He owns all of section 8, Burrows township; eighty acres on section 7; one hundred and twenty acres on section 6; and twenty-one acres on section 31 and thus has become one of the extensive landowners of the county, while his place is regarded as one of the best improved farms in this part of the state, lacking in none of the accessories and conveniences of the model farm property of the twentieth century. He has a large and attractive residence supplied with every modern comfort, including electric lights, steam heat and hot and cold water. He has four sets of buildings upon his section of land and he has been very successful in his farming operations. Experience and study have taught him the best time for planting and the best methods of cultivating his fields, and he annually harvests large crops. He also feeds about a carload of cattle each year, four carloads of sheep and two carloads of hogs. He is cultivating three hundred and eighty acres of his land, while the remainder he rents. He is also a stockholder in the Cornlea State Bank.

  On the 15th of August, 1891, Mr. Noonan was married to Miss Catherine Roddy, a daughter of Martin and Catherine (Brahany) Roddy, who were natives of Ireland, where the father followed the occupation of farming throughout his entire life, his labors being ended in death in 1901, while his wife survived until

 

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1903. To Mr. and Mrs. Noonan have been born ten children, namely: James, born May 27, 1892, who is attending college at Omaha, Nebraska; John P., born September 18, 1898; Bridget Rose, February 17, 1895; Catherine A., November 16, 1896; Peter J., January 22, 1900; Mary A., February 8, 1903; Michael T., July 2, 1905; Ellen M., November 3, 1906; Thomas E., June 22, 1909; and Joseph P., March 29, 1911.

  Mr. Noonan votes independently as he does not desire to bind himself by party ties, exercising his right of franchise according to the dictates of his judgment. He was the first supervisor of his part of the county and served in that office for one year, while for four different terms of one year each he has filled the position of assessor. He has likewise been a school officer for the past thirty-eight years and has done much to further the interests of education. He was nominated for the legislature but failed of election. His religious faith is that of the Catholic church and he belongs to the Order of St. Francis. There is no person living within fifteen miles of Mr. Noonan with whom he has not had business dealings and all speak of him in terms of respect and regard because of the integrity of his methods and his unfailing enterprise. His course has always been so upright and honorable that he has never had any trouble with those with whom he has had dealings and has never been engaged in a lawsuit. Coming to this country without capital, save the determination to win success by honorable methods, he has constantly worked his way upward and his record should well serve as a source of inspiration and encouragement to others.


REV. CYRIAC STEMPEL, O. F. M.

  Rev. Father Cyriac Stempel, O. F. M., has charge of St. Bonaventure's Catholic church in Columbus. He was born in St. Libory, Illinois, a son of Joseph and Gertrude (Pohlmeyer) Stempel, both of whom were natives of Germany. The father was born December 8, 1800, and the mother was born February 5, 1819. The father emigrated to the United States in 1829 and was married in St. Libory, Illinois, in 1859.

  The son was educated in the parochial school of his native place and at the age of thirteen was sent to Teutopolis, Illinois, to take a college course, which he completed in 1878, when he joined the Order of St. Francis. From 1881 until 1883 he studied philosophy in Quincy, Illinois, and from 1883 until 1886 he studied theology in St. Louis, Missouri, where he was ordained priest April 26, 1886. His first charge was Bishop Creek, near Teutopolis, Illinois, in 1887, for one year. At the same time he was made professor in the college at Teutopolis, filling the chairs of Latin, English and German until July, 1893, when he was made chaplain of the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet, Illinois. In September, 1900, he was made pastor of St. Francis church at Petoskey, Michigan, where he remained until August, 1906, when he became assistant to St. John's church at Joliet, Illinois. On the 5th of January, 1911, he came to Nebraska and took charge of Platte Center parish until August, 1912, when his superiors made him pastor of St. Bonaventure's church in Columbus. This is one of the largest parishes in Platte county. It numbers at present about two hundred and fifty families, com-

 REV. CYRIAC STEMPEL

 

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posed of English, German and Polish. A hospital conducted by the Sisters of St. Francis and a parochial school and academy are in connection with the church. The work in these various institutions makes heavy demand upon the time and attention of Father Cyriac, as he is commonly called. Although he has made his home in Columbus for only a brief period, he has gained the esteem of his parishioners and of all with whom he has come in contact.


CAPTAIN LUTHER H. NORTH.

  Fiction furnishes no more interesting or thrilling tales than those offered in our own western history. The record of the experiences of Captain Luther H. North are such as would claim the attention of any youth if given in detail. There is no phase of scout life or of Indian warfare in the west with which he is not familiar, and he is numbered among those who have aided in shaping the history of this section of the country. He now makes his home at No. 918 West Fifteenth street in Columbus but is a native of Richland county, Ohio. born March 6, 1846, his parents being Thomas J. and Jane (Townley) North. The father was born in 1812, in Tompkins county, New York, which was also the birthplace of the mother, whose natal year was 1820. Removing to Ohio, the father engaged in business at Rome, Richland county, and was there county surveyor for many years. He was an active representative of the democratic party, taking a helpful interest in promoting the interests of the party in that locality. Removing westward to Chicago, he afterward became a resident of Nebraska, making the journey by rail to Iowa City, Iowa, and thence by stage to Omaha in 1855. He was with a surveying party that helped sectionize all the country between Omaha and Elkhorn, Nebraska. The year after his arrival in this state his family joined him in the west and in March, 1857, he started out with a party of surveyors who were laying out claims. One of this party, John Davis, gave out, after which Thomas J. North aided him to reach a deserted log cabin and then set out to bring help from the ranch house where they were staying but became lost in the deep snow on the Little Pappipio river and was frozen to death. When found by a searching party he was less than a mile from the house he was looking for. His widow long survived him, passing away in 1908.

  Captain North of this review began his education in Ohio and attended school to a limited extent in Florence. Nebraska, to which place the family removed after the father's death. He was the third in order of birth of five children. When only thirteen years of age he came to Columbus and became a mail carrier on the Star route between Columbus and Monroe. There were many Indians in the state at that time and in 1859 the Pawnee outbreak occurred. Captain North became familiar with all of the experiences of life on the frontier and with every phase of pioneer existence. After carrying the mail for a year he became associated with his brother James in running a big bunch of cattle on the prairie. In those days all kinds of wagon trains passed through the district on their way to California, Pike's Peak and other places in search of gold. In the fall of 1862 Captain North responded to the country's call for aid, enlisting at Columbus in Company K, Second Nebraska Cavalry, being mustered in at Omaha. He returned from

 

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that city to the Pawnee Indian reservation, then near Genoa in Nance county, Nebraska, the Second Regiment being assigned to guard duty against the Sioux, who were then harassing the Pawnees. In the spring of 1863 the command was ordered to Sioux City and joined General Sully's forces, proceeding up the Missouri river to head off a band of Indians. A battle occurred at White Stone Hill in Dakota, in which the Second Nebraska and the Sixth Iowa participated, many Indians and some soldiers being killed.

  In 1864 Captain North began freighting from Omaha west to Columbus, Kearney and Cottonwood Springs, the name of the latter place being ultimately changed to Fort McPherson. When hauling grain for an outfit that was going to Virginia City, Nevada, he turned back at Pawnee Springs and was camped near what is now Gothenburg, then known as Brady Island, where he ran into a band of about twenty hostile Sioux. One of the number drew his gun and Captain North was certainly at his mercy, as he had no weapon, but another of the band told his companion not to shoot and nothing was done. However, with reinforcements that same band attacked an emigrant train the next day near Plum creek and killed thirteen. There was always the possibility of an attack when he was engaged in freighting and one had to be continually on the alert.

  In 1866 Captain North went to Michigan, where he attended school. The following year his brother Frank recruited four companies of Pawnee Indians and Luther H. North became captain of Company D, First Battalion Indian Scouts. That year, with his command, he participated in several skirmishes. When at Ogallala, Nebraska, doing guard duty for the supply trains. a running fight was held with some Indians under Spotted Tail, the Ogallala Sioux chief, and his son was killed in the encounter. In 1867 Turkey Leg and a band of warriors killed the crew of a train at Plum creek. Captain North's brother, with forty-five men, gave chase and seventeen Cheyennes were killed, while Turkey Leg's squaw and his son were captured. Later in 1867 a council was held between Generals Sherman, Sheridan, Harney and several of the Indian chiefs, among them Turkey Leg and his squaw and son were exchanged for three white boys and two girls. After a year Luther H. North was made captain of Company A. All of the service was in the spring and summer months, as the Indians would not go on a winter campaign. In 1869 a battle was fought against Tall Bull at Summit Springs, Colorado. The battle was originally called Susanna Springs, as in the encounter a woman named Susanna was recaptured from the Indians. In that engagement about one hundred of the red men were killed.

  Captain North continued in active service until 1870 and then, retiring from the army, came to Columbus, where he engaged in the livery business until 1876. In that year General Sherman called him and his brother Frank to Chicago and they went to the Indian territory, where the Pawnees were then upon a reservation. They were sent to Fort D. A. Russell after being equipped at Sidney. Nebraska. Frank North, who was an unusually fine pistol shot, was post guide at Fort Russell. From Sidney the troops went north to Fort Robinson and drove Red Cloud off Chadron creek and back to Fort Robinson. They proceeded on to Fort Laramie and then joined the command of General Crook. On the 26th of November they found a band of Cheyennes under Dull Knife and a big battle was fought on the Powder river in the Big Horn mountains, in which more whites were killed than Indians. After the Indians were forced to surrender the village was destroyed,

 

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together with about fifteen hundred buffalo skins. Captain North was mustered out of service in 1877. Between the years 1870 and 1876, although not an enlisted soldier he did some scout duty for a company of infantry and cavalry located at Fort Hartsuff on the Loup river at St. Paul, Nebraska. In 1877 he engaged with his brothers and W. F. Cody, better known as Buffalo Bill, in the cattle business on Dismal river in Nebraska. In 1882 he returned to Columbus and bought and sold horses and cattle. In 1886 he was appointed by Cleveland as deputy internal revenue collector and upon his return to Columbus in 1889 he engaged in the livestock business. In 1900 he began farming, to which he devoted his attention until 1910, when he entered the service of the United States government as storekeeper gauger at Omaha. However, he has called Columbus his home since 1859 and is now living retired here occupying a pleasant residence at No. 918 West Fifteenth street.

  In 1898 Captain North married Miss Elvina Sprague, a daughter of James E. Sprague, who went west to California and afterward returned to Nebraska, becoming a blacksmith and farmer at Silver Creek, Merrick county, where he also conducted a store. When Captain North can be prevailed upon to enter into reminiscences concerning his life as scout and Indian fighter, his tales are most interesting. He thoroughly knows the red man, his habits, his methods of warfare, his customs, his beliefs and his ideas. He speaks the language of some of the tribes and takes a fair and impartial view of the Indian problem, having his information concerning the red race at first hand. His efforts have been an effective force in reclaiming this region for the purposes of civilization and his name deserves a prominent place on the pages of Nebraska's history.


JACOB GREISEN.

  Jacob Greisen, a well known merchant of Columbus, was born on the Rhine, in Germany, June 10, 1849. His parents, Christian and Mary (Mouss) Greisen, were married in the fatherland and there resided until 1868, in which year they crossed the Atlantic to America and made their way to Dane county, Wisconsin, where they located upon a farm. Three years later they came to Platte county, Nebraska, and took up their residence upon a farm here. The father died in 1878 and the mother in 1894.

  Jacob Greisen received his education in his native land and in 1868 accompanied his parents to the new world. He remained under the parental roof until 1871, when he went to Chicago, arriving in that city just after the great fire which devastated it. He remained there until August, 1872, and then came to Columbus, Nebraska, where in 1874 he opened a shoe store which he has since conducted. During the forty-one years that he has been engaged in business here he has won recognition as a merchant of sound judgment, enterprise and unquestioned reliability. He carries a complete and well chosen stock, and his liberal policy has enabled him to build up a large and representative trade.

  In November, 1894, in Columbus, occurred the marriage of Mr. Greisen and Miss Anna Wagner, a daughter of Robert Wagner, deceased. To this marriage have been born two children, Marie and Katharyne.

 

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  Mr. Greisen is a democrat and for three terms, or six years, served on the Columbus city council, proving an efficient and public-spirited alderman. Fraternally he is connected with the Knights of Columbus and the Sons of Herman and his religious faith is that of the Roman Catholic church. For more than four decades he has been intimately connected with the commercial growth and development of Columbus, and he is also identified with its financial interests as a director of the First National Bank. He possesses the characteristic virtues of his race, being sagacious and dependable, and the city owes much of its prosperity to men such as he, men who quietly and steadily perform the duties that devolve upon them and manage their business affairs with sound judgment.


JOHN TERNUS.

  Through well directed effort John Ternus became one of the extensive landowners of Platte county and now occupies a highly improved and valuable farm situated on section 20, Granville township. His life record might serve as the text of a valuable lesson, for it shows what may be accomplished through hard work intelligently directed. He was born in Germany March 12, 1852, a son of John and Annie (Wagner) Ternus, also natives of that country, where the father followed farming throughout his entire life. He passed away in 1885, while his wife died in 1900.

  John Ternus was reared and educated in Germany, remaining with his parents to the age of twenty years, when in 1872 he crossed the Atlantic and became a resident of Marshall county, Illinois, where he worked as a farm hand for six years. During that period he carefully saved his earnings until at length he had money sufficient to enable him to purchase seventy-two acres of land in Marshall county. Taking up his abode thereon, he cultivated that farm for nine years, at the end of which time he sold out and removed to Platte county, Nebraska, investing in two hundred and forty acres of land on section 21, Granville township. With characteristic energy he began to develop and cultivate that tract and soon wrought a marked transformation in its appearance. To his original holdings he added from time to time as his financial resources increased until he now owns eight hundred acres of land, four hundred of which lie in Granville township, one hundred and sixty acres in St. Bernard township and the remainder in Humphrey township. He continued the cultivation of his farm until 1905, when he retired and removed to Humphrey, where he lived for four years. He afterward spent a year in Omaha but he could not be contented without some occupation, for indolence and idleness are utterly foreign to his nature and he returned to the old homestead, building a nice residence on another part of his farm, on section 20 Granville township, near Cornlea. He has since occupied that home and is now again content in the supervision of his place. His has been an active, busy and useful life crowned with well merited success. He is a stockholder in the new bank of Humphrey, known as the Farmers State Bank, and at one time he was extensively engaged in feeding cattle, shipping about two car loads annually. He now largely leaves the work of the farm to others, however, but manages to

 

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keep busy in the care and general supervision of his property. He is also a stockholder in the Farmers Elevator company of Humphrey.

  In February, 1878, Mr. Ternus was united in marriage to Miss Rosa Maier, by whom he had eight children, two of whom are deceased. The surviving are as follows: Frank, who follows farming in Humphrey township; John H., an agriculturist of Granville township; Mary, who is the wife of Conrad Frey, of Humphrey township; Elizabeth, who gave her hand in marriage to John Van Dyke, a farmer of Humphrey township; Peter J., who is a banker of Humphrey and a sketch of whom appears on another page of this work; and Conrad, a farmer of Granville township. The wife and mother passed away April 29, 1892, and in September, 1900, Mr. Ternus was again married, his second union being with Mrs. Monica (Schrafle) Nick. To them have been born two children, Edward P. and Herman L.

  In religious faith Mr. Ternus is a Catholic, while his political belief is that of the democratic party. He has never had occasion to regret his determination to come to the new world, for here he found good business opportunities and in their utilization has won a very gratifying and substantial measure of success, all of which he well deserves.


REUBEN MARSHALL CAMPBELL.

  Reuben Marshall Campbell, who has held the position of superintendent of schools in Columbus since the fall of 1910, has been engaged in educational work for a number of years with splendid success. His birth occurred in Adams county, Indiana, on the 20th of March, 1866, his parents being Sylvester and Mary (Wood) Campbell, both of whom were natives of Ohio, the former born in Guernsey county in 1830. Their marriage was celebrated in Indiana in 1861. Sylvester Campbell passed away in November, 1913, but is survived by his widow. The family comes of Scotch origin in the paternal line, and John Campbell, the grandfather of our subject, was a native of New York.

  Reuben M. Campbell acquired his early education in the public schools of his native state and in 1892 was graduated from Franklin College of Franklin, Indiana, with the degree of Bachelor of Science. Subsequently he pursued postgraduate work in Chicago University and then took up the profession of teaching, first acting as teacher in the high school at Winfield, Kansas for two years. In 1894 he returned to Franklin College, studying in that institution for one term and receiving the Master of Science degree. The same year he came to Platte county, Nebraska, and after serving as principal of the high school at Platte Center for two years became assistant principal of the high school in Columbus, teaching Latin and chemistry. He next acted as principal of schools at Humphrey, this county, for four years and afterward spent a similar period as superintendent of schools at Westpoint, Cuming county, Nebraska. In the fall of 1910 he took his present position as superintendent of schools at Columbus, in which connection he has made a most creditable record, the efficiency of his work being manifest in the improvement of the school system of the city. He is a director of the German National Bank and of the Young Men's Christian Association.

 

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  On the 27th of June, 1907, in Columbus, Nebraska, Mr. Campbell was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth G. Sheldon, a daughter of Chauncey H. Sheldon. They have one son, Donald Clarence Campbell, who was born June 27, 1910. Mr. Campbell gives his political allegiance to the republican party, while his fraternal connections make him a Master Mason. His religious faith is that of the Congregational church. He is a man whose life has always been in keeping with high standards and he justly deserves the full measure of confidence and respect now entertained for him by all who know him.


AUGUST RUNGE.

  August Runge is numbered among the substantial citizens that Germany has furnished to Platte county, where for many years he carried on general farming but is now living retired in Columbus, having reached the eightieth milestone on life's journey. He was born in Prussia, October 7, 1835, a son of Charles and Eva (Schwartz) Runge. The father died at the age of sixty years and the mother passed away at the age of fifty-five years, five months and five days. The educational opportunities of August Runge were very limited. He worked as a farm hand in Germany and was engaged in active military duty in the war of 1861 and 1866.

  At length he determined to come to America, attracted by the reports which he heard concerning opportunities in this country. His brother-in-law, Charles Reinke, one of the early settlers of Platte county, sent him money for the trip and he crossed the Atlantic in 1867, casting in his lot with the pioneer settlers whose efforts were bringing about the development of this section of the country. He secured a claim of eighty acres on section 26, Bismark township, built a sod house and there lived for thirteen years, experiencing all the hardships and privations incident to settlement on the frontier. He was poor and had to work hard to get a start and he practiced the closest economy in the early days, but as time pasted on his labors were rewarded with good crops and the sale thereof enabled him to purchase additional lands until he became the owner of a farm of three hundred and sixty acres in Platte county and another of two hundred acres in Colfax county. He made splendid improvements upon his land and engaged extensively in the raising of stock. Earnest, persistent labor at length won him prosperity and he has been most generous with his children, dividing his lands among them since he has retired from active farm life.

  In 1860 Mr. Runge was united in marriage to Miss Augusta Reinke, who was born in Germany in 1833 and passed away in 1899. Her father, Sam Reinke, was a sheep raiser and farmer in Germany. To Mr. and Mrs. Runge were born six children, as follows: August, who lives on a farm in Bismark township, is married and has four children -- Arthur, Sophie, August and Katherine; Emma, the wife of Kasper Karl, of Colfax county, by whom she has four children -- Arthur, Walter, Kate and Emma; two who died in infancy, while the parents were still residents of Germany; and two who died in America as infants.

  Mr. Runge now lives alone in Columbus, having retired from active business. He has ever been a devoted member of the German Lutheran Evangelical church,

 AUGUST RUNGE

 

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uniting with the church near his home that stood on land which was given for the purpose by Charles Reinke. One of his most cherished possessions is a medal of honor sent him by William I, emperor of Germany, for bravery as a soldier in the German army. Although now eighty years of age, Mr. Runge does not look more than fifty and in spirit and interests seems yet in his prime, keeping in touch with all questions and issues of the day and with local affairs of moment. His life record should serve to inspire and encourage others who have to start out empty-handed as he did, for his career shows what may be accomplished when determination and energy lead the way.


SIEBERT HEIBEL.

  A large proportion of Platte county's citizens are of German descent or have had their nativity in the fatherland, and in the new world they have found the opportunity for advancement and progress along business lines and have aided in upbuilding a substantial commonwealth. To this number belongs Siebert Heibel, who was born in Hessen, Germany, July 1, 1856. His father, Valentine Heibel, also a native of the same country, came with his family to the United States in 1867 and for two years was a resident of Illinois, after which, in February, 1869, he came to Platte county and secured a homestead claim in Bismark township. With characteristic energy he began the development of the farm and his labors were attended with good results. He had become a well known and highly esteemed citizen long ere he passed away in Bismark township in the fall of 1888. His widow, Mrs. Angelica Heibel, also a native of Germany, survives and is now making her home with her youngest son at the very advanced age of ninety years. In the family were five children: Anna, the wife of Charles Dittberner, living in Madison county; John, whose home is in Columbus; Katie, the wife of John Rickert, also of Columbus; Siebert, of this review; and Julius, who occupies the old home farm in Bismark township.

  Siebert Heibel was a lad of about eleven years when he accompanied his parents on their emigration to the new world, and was in the thirteenth year of his age when he became a resident of Platte county. He has remained within its borders throughout the intervening period and thus for forty-six years has been a witness of the growth and development of this part of the state. He knows what farming meant in the early days when farm machinery and implements were crude and when it was a most arduous and strenuous task to convert the wild prairie into productive fields. He has lived to witness many changes in the methods of farming and at all times has kept in touch with the trend of modern progress. He has always carried on general farming and is now the owner of two hundred and sixty acres of excellent land on section 24, Bismark township, known as the Charles Reinke place, having belonged to one of the earliest settlers of the township.

  Mr. Heibel was united in marriage to Miss Louisa Lucke, a native of Germany, and a daughter of Gerhard Lucke, one of the early settlers of Platte county. Seven children were born of this marriage: Bertha, the wife of Paul Roth, of Columbus; Clara, the wife of Otto Korte, living on her father's farm; Mary, who died in young womanhood; and Carl, Paul, Walter and Madeleine, all yet at home. The
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264PAST AND PRESENT OF PLATTE COUNTY

family circle was again broken by the hand of death, when on the 25th of October, 1903, the wife and mother passed away, leaving behind her many warm friends who mourned her loss because of her excellent traits of character which had endeared her to those with whom she came in contact.

  Mr. Heibel has been a democrat since age conferred upon him the right of franchise and is recognized as one of the local leaders of his party. For twenty-nine years he has filled the office of assessor of Bismark township, making a most creditable record by his promptness and fidelity. For a quarter of a century he has been treasurer of the school district and he is always interested in progressive education. He belongs to the German Lutheran church and his life has been one of high and manly purpose.


WILLIAM FOLTZ.

  William Foltz is living on section 22, Granville township, where he owns and cultivates one hundred and sixty acres of good land. In the midst of the place stands an attractive modern residence and all of the improvements of a model farm are there found. A native of Indiana, he was born in Ripley county, May 14, 1863, a son of Ignatz and Caroline (Cook) Foltz. The father, a native of Eladen, Germany, was a farmer by occupation and also learned and followed the butcher's trade. He came. to America in 1824, settling in Cincinnati, Ohio, and in that city he was united in marriage to Miss Caroline Cook, also a native of Baden. While living in Cincinnati he worked at the butcher's trade but afterward removed to Ripley county, Indiana, where he turned his attention to farming, spending his remaining days there. He passed away in that county in 1907, when he had reached the very venerable age of ninety-four years. He had long survived his wife, who died upon the home farm in Indiana in 1878.

  William Foltz remained with his parents until be reached the age of thirteen years and then, at a time when most boys are busy with the duties of the schoolroom, he started out to earn his own living, working as a farm hand for six dollars per month. He continued to work at farm labor until he reached the age of twenty-two years, when he rented land for two years. He was then married and removed to Princeville, Peoria county, Illinois, where he again engaged in farming upon rented land for five years. In 1892 he came to Platte county, Nebraska, and purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land on section 22, Granville township upon which he has since resided. He has also purchased four hundred acres in Western Nebraska, near Alliance. His place was raw prairie but he converted it into rich and productive fields and has continuously carried on general farming and stock-raising, following practical, progressive methods that produce good results. In addition he owns a fine town residence in Humphrey and he is one of the stockholders in the Farmers State Bank of that place. His attention is now largely given to the breeding and raising of high-grade stock and he feeds both cattle and hogs. When he purchased his place there were no improvements upon it worthy of mention but in 1904 he erected a fine new residence and in 1909 built large and commodious barns. He also has the best machinery to facilitate the work of the fields and everything about the place is indicative of the spirit of

 

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enterprise which has characterized him in the conduct of his farming interests since he started out on his own account.

  On the 21st of April, 1887, Mr. Foltz was united in marriage to Miss Julia Stenger, a daughter of Frank and Mary Stenger, both of whom were natives of Germany, the latter being now deceased. Frank Stenger, who followed general agricultural pursuits throughout his active business career, is now eighty years of age and makes his home in Kickapoo, Peoria county, Illinois. To Mr. and Mrs. Foltz have been born six children, as follows: Carrie, whose birth occurred March 6, 1888, and who is now the wife of Ruckus Pfeifer, a farmer of Granville township; Amelia, who was born June 4, 1890, and died October 15, 1898; Edward, born March 28, 1892; Annie, born February 17, 1894; Theresa, who was born June 19, 1896, and died in infancy; and Rosie, whose birth occurred on the 2d of March, 1898. Edward, Annie and Rosie are at home. In addition to their own children Mr. and Mrs. Foltz are rearing a little boy, August, an orphan whom they brought from New York on the 16th of December, 1913, and he is now eight years of age.

  Politically Mr. Foltz is a democrat, while his religious faith is that of the Catholic church, he and his wife and children all being communicants of St. Francis Catholic church of Humphrey. For years he has served as one of its trustees, is a member of St. Joseph's Men's Society of that church and does all in his power to further the work of the church and promote its upbuilding. There have been no unusual chapters in his life history but the record proves what may be accomplished when determination and industry constitute the salient traits of character of the individual.


JOHN J. BURKE.

  The value of industry and enterprise is well illustrated in the career of John J. Burke who, starting in life with no capital and with but a limited education, has so capably managed his business interests that today he is a prominent stockman of Columbus and Platte county, meriting the esteem and respect which is everywhere accorded him. He was born in Champaign county, Ohio, September 6, 1854, and comes of Irish parentage. His father, Patrick Burke, was a native of the Emerald isle, as was also his mother, who bore the maiden name of Johannah Carrig. They were married in the land of their nativity and subsequently emigrated to the United States, choosing Champaign county, Ohio, as their home. In 1864 the father, with his wife, three sons and three daughters, removed to a farm in Shell Creek township, Platte county, Nebraska, and was identified with agricultural pursuits throughout his remaining years. He was permitted to enjoy his new home for less than a decade, however, for he passed away in 1873. The wife and mother survived and departed this life in 1898.

  John J. Burke was a lad of ten years when he accompanied the other members of the family to Platte county. At an early age he was assigned the tasks on the home farm that usually fall to the farmer boy and the educational advantages he received were somewhat limited, as he was only permitted to attend school for eight or nine terms and that only during the winter seasons. He spent forty-two

 

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