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Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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five children. The family is held in the highest esteem by all who know them. Mr. Moore is a member of the Presbyterian church. Politically he is a Republican.



     Among the earliest settlers in Keya Paha county, who have been largely instrumental in the growth of the financial and social interests of that region, a prominent place is given the gentleman whose name appears at the head of this review. He has always been found ready to further the interests of the community where he chose his home, and has gained a wide and enviable reputation as a worthy citizen and substantial agriculturist of Pine precinct.

     Mr. Wentworth was born on a farm near North Appleton, Maine, February 1, 1854, and was reared and educated there during his early years. His father, Thomas A. Wentworth, a native of Hope, Maine, came to Fontanelle, Washington county, Nebraska, in 1868, taking up a homestead there, where the family lived for some years, then moved to Burt county, and in 1887 settled in Keya Paha county, where the father died November 16, 1887. The mother, Nancy B. (Hall) was born near Magog, Maine. She resides in Keya paha county with her son. Our subject is the second child in a family of eight; four were pioneers in Nebraska. When he was twenty-one years of age, he started out for himself, following farm work; purchasing a farm in Burt county, he continued on that place for several years, coming to Keya Paha county in 1883, where he located on a homestead in section 2, township 32, range 20, which he still owns. When he first settled here there was not a thing on the place except a little timber on the creeks. He put up a nice house and other improvements, and then bought his present home on section 24, where he has four hundred and eighty acres of good farming land, part of which is used for pasture. He keeps about eighty head of cattle, twenty horses, and each year markets eighty hogs. He has a good orchard on each farm, with apples and other fruits, and besides a lot of natural timber has planted a large number of forest trees. For eighteen years he lived in a log house, but now he has one of the finest county residences in the county. He had had a hard time in acquiring his present possessions, and during the dry years had heavy losses and often became discouraged. When he first landed here all he had was a team, wagon and a few tools, and three dollars in money, and was obliged to haul wood to Atkinson, which he traded for flour and provisions. He had done his share in building up this region, and would not care to go through homesteaders' experience again. We present on another page a fine view of this beautiful country place with the new buildings and picturesque surroundings.

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     On July 11, 1878, Mr. Wentworth was married to Miss Ellen Hill, from Noble county, Indiana, a daughter of Edwin and Henrietta (Thorp) Hill. They are the parents of two children, namely: Fern E. and John Orson, both now living in Pueblo, Colorado, in the real estate business.

     Mr. Wentworth is a Populist and strong Bryan man. He has always been active in local affairs, and in 1892 was elected county commissioner, serving for six years.



     Arthur D. Baker, a highly respected resident of his township, has spent many years of his life in this region, and is one of the leading old settlers of Dawes county, where he has devoted his energies to the interest and welfare of his adopted town and county.

     Mr. Baker was born in Waterloo, Blackhawk county, Iowa, January 24, 1857. He is a son of David Baker, of old Puritan stock, born in Maine, a farmer by occupation, who died here November 25, 1906. The mother, Rebecca Able, was a Quakeress, born in Ontario, Canada. Our subject was reared in Iowa until fourteen years of age, then with the rest of his family moved to Kansas, locating in Elk county, where his young manhood years were spent on a farm. In 1888 he left Kansas, driving overland in a covered wagon, and struck Nebraska, locating on a homestead in section 5, township 30, range 61. The trip took six weeks, and the time was full of incidents and rough experiences, camping out at night in the wagon beside the roadway. He immediately went to work building a log house, and occupied this for six years, employing his time in breaking up the farm, and cutting logs which he hauled to the town of Crawford and traded for flour and provisions. He went through many hard times, witnessing the drouth (sic) periods and other discouragements, but has never had a complete failure of crops. Success attended his efforts, however, and he is now in comfortable circumstances, being proprietor of four hundred acres of good land, about seventy acres of which is cultivated and the rest in pasture land and timber. There is an abundance of wild fruits on his place, and he has at different times cut lumber from the place for buildings, etc. He had a good house, barns and other buildings, and all his land is fenced. He has a num-

Compendium of History Reminiscence & Biography of Western Nebraska

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ber of good horses, and keeps quite a large herd of cattle and hogs.

     In 1880 Mr. Baker was married to Miss Ellen Long, whose father, Peter L. Long, was a farmer in Elk county, Kansas, and her mother, Miss Annie Stuck, was of Pensylvania (sic) German stock. Mr. and Mrs. Baker are the parents of the following children: Chester R., married, Arthur D., Jr., Charles O. and Florence E.

     Mr. Baker is a stanch Republican. He has helped organize and establish schools in his section of the county, and was the first director in his district, serving in all for sixteen years in that capacity.



     A striking example of what may be accomplished by persistent effort and good management is found in the life of the gentleman whose name is at the head of this article. For many years Mr. Zalesky has resided in Cheyenne county, and he has gained a valuable estate by his own efforts, and incidentally has become well known and is universally respected.

     Mr. Zalesky was born in Hanover, Kansas, February 25th, 1879, and grew to the age of eight years in that locality, at that time coming with his parents to Nebraska, settling in Cheyenne county. The father took up a homestead, improved it in good shape, and our subject has also become owner of two hundred and eighty acres on section 12, township 13, range 48, which he has built up into a good farm and ranch. He has put good buildings on the ranch, and cultivates about one hundred acres, running also thirty head of stock. He is considered one of the well-to-do men of his community, and is progressive and up-to-date in his methods of operating his farm. His parents occupy a homestead on section 18, township 13, range 47 where they also have a valuable property.

     Mr. Zalesky was married in Sidney, Nebraska, August 2d, 1905, to Agnes Henzl, who was born in Bohemia July 24th 1882, and came to America with her parents in 1888. Her father, Anton Henzl, settled in Cheyenne county with his family, filed on a homestead in section 14, township 13, range 47, where he now has a good home and ranch of three hundred and twenty acres. He has about one hundred and fifty acres under cultivation, and keeps about twenty-five head of stock. Mrs. Henzl died here on April 15th, 1907, leaving the following children: Agnes, wife of our subject, Joe, Frank, Josie, Mary, Tony, Jerry, John, James and Annie, all at home.

     Mr. Zalesky and his good wife have two children, Emil and Blanche. In political views Mr. Zalesky is a Republican, and firm in his convictions. Like many of his countrymen, he was reared in the Catholic church.



     James R. Chapman, a prominent old-timer of western Nebraska, resides on section 14, township 34, range 23, Keya Paha county, where he has built up a good home and farm and is well known throughout the locality as a leading citizen and successful farmer.

     Mr. Chapman was born in County Cornwall, England, in 1861. His father, Richard Chapman was a farmer, and lived and died in his native land. Our subject was the youngest in his parents' family, and was raised and educated in England, starting out to make his own way in the world at the age of nineteen. He came to America, landing in New York city, May 3d, 1880, and went direct to Platteville, Wisconsin, where he followed farm work for two years, then went to Calument, Michigan, and worked in the copper mines for two years. He then returned to England for a five months' visit and again came to Wisconsin, in 1885 coming to Nebraska and locating in this county. He settled on a pre-emption in section 13, township 34, range 23, and put up his first building, which was a dugout slabbed on the inside, 'batching it" there for a couple of years. The first year he broke up part of his land with a yoke of oxen and started farming, living on the place for three years, then went to the Black Hills and was in Lead City for three years, working in the mines there. The work there was very hard and extremely dangerous, and he had several narrow escapes from accidents and death, so decided to go back to Keya Paha county, which he did, and lived on his tree claim for five year. In July, 1900, he settled on his present homestead, situated in section 14, ---------------* township, which was an entirely unimproved piece of land. He put up a combination log and frame house and opened his farm, with eighty acres in cultivation ad the balance of his section is used for hay and pasture for his stock, of which he has a large number. He went through the dry years and had heavy losses which set him back considerably, also was hailed out three times, but stuck to his place and now has a valuable piece of land, well improved.

     Mr. Chapman was married in 1887 to Miss Eliza Switzer, whose father was an old settler here, originally from Ohio. Eight children

* Appears space was left, but name of township was not inserted by time the book was printed.

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