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Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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to assist him in the care of this stock and operate the ranch. His place is well improved, and his hay land, of which he has a large tract, is all fenced. He has never been through anything like hard times, and has been successful from the beginning. In 1906 he had about five hundred tons of hay which he was unable to cut on account of the valley where it was grown being wet, and this was quite a severe loss to him. He built a comfortable frame house in 1893, but this was burned down in 1895, and he then erected a brick adobe and plastered with cement. This is well finished off inside and has a fine porch around it. He has a pleasant home, burns coal for fuel, which is rarely done in this locality, and is a great believer in having the comforts of life. He is well contented here, but intends to move to town in the near future, as his wife wants to leave the hills.

     Mr. Eldred was married to Miss Mary Ellen Avery in 1898. She is a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Sylvenus Avery. Mr. and Mrs. Eldred have no children.

     Mr. Eldred is an independent voter, believing it best to give the best man on any ticket the chance, and has never taken an active interest in politics, although he always gets out to vote. He has made a great success since coming to this country. and is satisfied with the result of his ventures in the cattle business. The nearest mail station from his ranch is at Orlando, a distance of one and one-half miles. His nearest trading point is Alliance, thirty miles distant. Lakeside, in Sheridan county, on the B. & M. Railroad, twenty-five miles distant, is his shipping point.

     Some interesting pictures are presented on another page showing some of Mr. Eldred's property.

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     Alex Lowry, who is an old settler and highly estemed (sic) citizen of Harrison, Sioux county, Nebraska, and the owner of a neat little restaurant and confectioner's store at that place, is a man of good business judgment and sterling character. He is well known throughout his community as a man of energetic habits, and is well-to-do and one of the leading citizens in local affairs.

     Mr. Lowry was born in New Lenox, Will county, Illinois, in 1856. His father, J. W. Lowry, was a farmer all his life. He married Jane Davis and the family lived in different parts of Illinois during our subject's boyhood days. In July, 1861, the family went to Iowa, where they remained about eighteen months, then back to Illinois in the spring of 1863, remaining two years, then to Canada for a year, and in 1866 they returned to Illinois. In the spring of 1877 he again moved to Iowa and farmed there for four years in Warren county. From there he went to Calhoun county, Iowa, in 1881, purchasing a farm on which he lived up to 1892. Soon after leaving the last mentioned place Mr. Lowry came to Harrison, and here filed on a homestead situated three and a half miles east of the town, and improved it, living on the place until he proved up on his claim. He then rented land near Harrison and farmed for ten years, also was interested in the live stock business to quite an extent. In August, 1903, Mr. Lowry left his farm and came to Harrison to reside permanently, opening up a restaurant and confectionery store, purchasing the building which he now occupies. He has done exceedingly well and has built up a good trade, carrying a nice line of goods, and has his place fitted up with all modern appliances for the proper handling of his business.

     While living in Illinois, Mr. Lowry was married, October 19, 1876, to Miss Alice Corwin, daughter of Nathan and Eliza (Cole) Corwin. Mr. and Mrs. Lowry are the parents of three children, namely: Mabel, Della and John. The family occupy a pleasant home and are popular in their neighborhood as worthy citizens.

     Mr. Lowry was elected sheriff of Sioux county in 1900 and at the expiration of his term was again chosen. He proved a most capable and efficient public officer and served in all five years in this capacity, lacking about ten months of serving three full terms.



     Hugh Booth, a respected and successful farmer of Brown county, Nebraska, has a home and a habitation near Long Pine, where his cheerful countenance and genial ways have long been known and welcome, The vast farming interests of northern and central Nebraska have long been suspected, but it has taken the labors of men like Mr. Booth to show something of what might be done in this, so long a barren and dreary waste. For many years he has been associated with pioneer experiences, and in any record of what has been done "out west" to make a garden out of a wilderness the name of Hugh Booth will deserve a prominent place.


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     Mr. Booth was born at Forest Lake, Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, November 6, 1860, where his father, William Booth, was at the time engaged as a miller. William Booth was a native of England, near Nottingham, in Derbyshire, where he married Hannah Wheatcroft and where his first two children were born.

     Hugh Booth was the seventh in a family of eight children born to his parents, all of whom are now living. He spent his childhood and youth in his native state, where he secured his education by attending the public schools. When he reached the age of twenty years he started for himself. After some years spent in various occupations, mostly in farming, he settled in 1882 at West Point, Cuming county, Nebraska, where he resided five years, then moved to Keya Paha county, teaming from Cuming county to their new location, the trip consuming ten days. Mr. Booth and his family made a location on a homestead near the Keya Paha river, and their first home was a sod house. Here Mr. Booth lived until his election as sheriff five years later. He was the third to be elected to that position in the new county. While sheriff he made his home in Springview, where his wife died. His wife was Mary Whiteman, to whom three children were born -- Fred, Mary and Hugh, Jr. In 1892 he was married to Mrs. Eliza Hains. Three children have blessed this union -- Oscar, Stella and Rose. By her first marriage Mrs. Booth bore three children -- Alice, John and Fern. In 1892 Mr. Booth removed to Brown county, where two years later he settled on a farm in section 1, township 30, range 22, which he sold in 1907 and bought one hundred and sixty acres in section 24.

     He is a true type of the best American farmer, upright and manly, industrious in his habits and of a kindly heart. Politically he is Bryan Democrat.



     Ed. T. Ross, one of the early settlers in the western part of Nebraska, resides in Gordon, Sheridan county, where he is widely known as a successful ranchman and business man. Mr. Ross was born in Fayette county, Texas, in 1862. His father, Anderson Ross, was a prominent merchant and cattleman, who lived on a large ranch in southern Texas, where our subject was raised. He was the fifth in a family of five children, and his father died when he was a small boy, leaving his mother, who was Mary Page Ligon before her marriage, to rear her large family of children. There was plenty of hard work to be done in carrying on the farm, and he assisted in this until he reached the age of twenty, then left Texas, and came north to Nebraska, helping to drive a bunch of horses to that country. He with his companions camped out during this trip and traveled over the spot where Gordon now stands in 1882. After coming to this state he worked on the E. S. Newman ranch, called the "N" Bar ranch, up to 1885, then moved to Montana, where he remained until 1889.

     In 1891 Mr. Ross came to Gordon and settled on a homestead twelve miles northeast of the town. He proved up on his claim and bought adjoining land until he owned a large tract, then sold it all out and purchased another ranch located eighteen miles northeast of Gordon. He is now proprietor of nineteen and a half quarter sections, and is extensively engaged in the cattle business. He has a very valuable estate and has been most successful in all his ventures since coming to this region. He personally superintends the ranching business, although he resides in Gordon, having built a fine residence there in the fall of 1897.

     Mr. Ross was married in 1888 to Miss Bessie Arnold, of Texas, Her father, J. C. Arnold, was a farmer of Fayette county, and her mother was of English descent. Seven children resulted from their marriage, named as follows: Roy, Jessie, Mary (deceased), Eva, Anderson (deceased), Hope and Robert.

     Mr. Ross is a stanch (sic) Republican and takes a leading part in the affairs of that party.



     Among the successful self-made men of Cheyenne county, Nebraska, may be truly noted Adam Schimka. He came to the new world from his mother country when but a mere boy, and since his residence here has displayed an enterprising spirit and the exercise of good judgment in a manner that commends him to all as one of the prominent and worthy citizens of his community. He now resides in section 4, township 12, range 48, and is a prosperous agriculturist and active, public-spirited resident. He settled in the region as a pioneer and has accumulated a fine property, now possessing three hundred and twenty acres of deeded land, also controlling thirteen hundred and twenty acres under lease. Mr. Schimka has closely applied himself to


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the study of his calling, is well versed in the same and possesses what years of experience teach to the observing only.

     Mr. Schimka was born in Bohemian Austria on the 24th of December, 1859, and grew to the age of thirteen years in his native country, then came to America, landing in New York City on June 1, 1872. He came to Missouri and settled in Benton county, remaining there until March 1, 1875, then moved to Wilber, Saline county, Nebraska, and lived in that place up to 1887. From there he removed to Lodgepole, Cheyenne county, arriving there April 9 of that year. He filed on a homestead in the southeast quarter of section 4, township 12, range 48, and developed a good farm, put up good buildings, etc., and still occupies the original homestead. He cultivates about one hundred and seventy acres and uses the balance of his ranch for range and pasture, keeping about one hundred and fifty head of stock. mostly cattle. Mr. Schimka has been most successful during later years, but in the early days of his residence in this region he went through many crop failures and became discouraged, but determined to remain and has become one of the most successful ranchmen of the county, and especially prominent among those who have come to America from the old world and succeeded in building up a valuable estate and comfortable home.

     Mr. Schimka was married September 28, 1882, at Wilber, Nebraska, to Mary Novak, born in Bohemia, and who came to the United States in that year, than a girl of twenty years of age. Mr. and Mrs. Schimka are the parents of seven children, who are named as follows: Edward, now living at Colorado; Mary, wife of Joe Brown, of Sidney; Emma, Rose, Joe, Ella and James, the last five all living at home, Three children, two boys and one girl, died in infancy, and both our subject's and his wife's parents are dead.

     Mr. Schimka is prominent in local affairs. He has been assessor of Colton precinct for a number of years. Politically he is a Democrat.



     Among the successful self-made men of Brown county may be truly mentioned the gentleman whose name heads this review. He came to the new world form his native country when a very young man, and since his residence here has displayed an enterprising spirit and the exercise of good judgment in a manner that commends him to all as a worthy citizen. Mr. Kackmeister was born in the village of Kissdorf, Holstein, Germany, October 25, 1857. His father, Claus Kackmeister, served in the German army during the war of 1848 against Denmark and again in 1852. Our subject was the fourth member in a family of five children, and was reared on a farm, receiving a common school education, and grew up assisting his father in all the hard farm work. At the age of twenty-one he entered the army, serving six month. In 1881 he came to the United States, sailing from Hamburg on the steamer Pennsylvania, landed in Philadelphia April 29. Here he remained for one year, working in a village near Reading, then came west to Omaha, securing employment on a farm near the city. He worked at this for a short time, then began railroading on the Union Pacific Railway, but soon became dissatisfied and quit that. He next bought a team and rented a farm near Omaha, but only remained on this place one year and one on a farm in Sarpy county, then moved to Howard county, there renting land which he worked for three years. From there he moved to Cherry county, where he settled on a homestead on the North Loup and engaged in the cattle business. Here he lived in a sod shanty, twenty-five miles from a railroad, proved up on a pre-emption claim and took a homestead. He remained on this homestead until 1893, and then came on to Brown county, settling on rented land and farmed for nine years, when he bought his present farm, located in section 33, township 30, range 21. He at once went to work improving this property, and now is proprietor of four hundred acres of land in one piece, with eighty acres three miles north of this farm and a tract on one hundred and sixty acres south of the home place. His farm buildings are substantial and conveniently arranged, and he has a good supply of water the year around. He has a fine apple orchard and other small fruits nicely growing, surrounded, as are also the buildings, by a thrifty grove of forest trees. He is progressive in his farming methods, and is one of those who has done a great deal towards securing good schools in this locality. A view of the premises will be found on one of the illustrated pages of this volume.
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     Mr. Kackmeister was married June 3, 1879, to Miss Sophia Schuman, a daughter of Joseph and Katharine (Goetch) Schuman, who was born and raised on a farm near his old home. Ten children have been born to them. named as follows: Henry, Annie, Willie, August, Tillie, Mary, Sophia, John, Katie and Nellie.
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