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the six succeeding years was in Bassett. In 1901 he took up a homestead under the Kincaid act, and has since resided on this ranch, the place consisting of seven hundred and twenty acres of good farm and hay land. Here he keeps one hundred head of cattle, and has broken up one hundred and twenty acres which he farms with good success, using the balance for pasture land. He has planted about seven acres of fine trees on his farm and has one of the pleasantest and best improved pieces of property in his locality. He has made all this through his own efforts, and has gone through many hardships and privations in building up his home. For some years the family lived in a log house, and the first year after getting a few acres broken for crops he lost his only team. He saw all the different phases of a pioneer's experience, and deeply appreciates the comfortable home and farm which he has won through so much hard labor.

     Mr. Barker was married in Ford county, Illinois, November 2, 1878, to Miss Mary A. Donovan, of Irish stock, daughter of one of the early settlers in Rock county, who is now deceased. To Mr. and Mrs. Barker six children have been born, namely: Virgil E., Maude M., Freeman C., Eva L., (deceased) and C., and also an infant who died unnamed.

     Mr. Barker is a gentleman of public spirit, and although he has never taken a very active part in politics, lends his aid to the betterment of conditions in his community wherever needed. He is a strong Socialist, believing entirely in the principles of that party.


     The gentleman above named is a prominent citizen of Redington and for many years has been engaged in the mercantile business, farming and ranching in Cheyenne county. He has passed through all the early Nebraska times and has been instrumental in a large measure in the success that has come to this region.

     Fred Gilman was born in Grant county, Wisconsin, March 26, 1874, and a part of his boyhood was spent there, coming to Redington, Nebraska, with his parents, two brothers and two sisters, locating on a school section purchased by the father in Cheyenne county. Both parents are now living at Redington. The father was a native of Vermont, while the mother was born in Illinois. Our subject took a homestead on section 18, township 19, range 52, and during the early times in Cheyenne county, established a general merchandise business. He has continued in this almost constantly, and has been most successful, building up a good trade and becoming one of the solid and substantial merchants of his town. Mr. Gilman owns considerable property in Redington.

     On March 26, 1900, Mr. Gilman married Estelle Trowbridge at Redington. Mrs. Gilman was born in Colfax county, Nebraska, and her father is now residing in Banner county, but the mother is dead. Mr. and Mrs. Gilman have two children, Oscar and Ralph, now attending school. Our subject has two brothers, Sherman, married, living at Redington, and Richard, also married, living at Bridgeport, both having one child. One sister, Nina, wife of T. C. Wilcox, lives in Redington, and another, Ida, wife of F. D. Hayes, lives at Colorado Springs, Colorado.

     Mr. Gilman takes an active interest in all local affairs, at present serving as moderator of school district No. 11, and is also postmaster of Redington.


     Samuel Hesselgesser, deceased, was for many years intimately connected with the activities of Loup county, Nebraska, and his well-spent life won him high regard. At his death the community lost one of her best citizens. He was born on a farm in Pennsylvania, in 1853, and died at his Loup county home in November, 1905.

     Samuel Hesselgesser's parents were Robert and Jane (Hazelet) Hesselgesser, the father being of German descent. The family were reliable farmers of Pennsylvania and our subject acquired the good habits of thrift and earnestness of purpose that are inculcated by life on a farm.

     The marriage of Mr. Hesselgesser occurred in 1874, when Miss Mary A. Watson became his helpmeet. The bride was a native of Pennsylvania and was a daughter of Thomas and Mary A. (Galbriath) Watson, the father being of Irish descent and the mother of Scotch ancestry. Mr. and Mrs. Hesselgesser had seven children, all boys: Milton, Homer (deceased), Walter, Elmer, Samuel, Glen and Watson.

     In 1884, in April, the family came to Nebraska, locating for one year in Fillmore county and then they came to Loup county, where they settled on their present farm in section 8, township 22, range 17. Coming at this early date, they were numbered among the earliest settlers and they encountered all the trials usually passed through by every pioneer. North Loup was the nearest trading point and all material for building purposes as

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well as supplies had to be hauled from that point and from Ainsworth. Our subject has camped out on many of these trips, sleeping under his covered wagon, fording streams and more than once the wagons have been mired in the mud. Their first buildings were constructed from the sods of the prairie and their first teams were ponies and oxen. Once a severe snow storm delayed the arrival of supplies for a couple of days, and Mrs. Hesselgesser was obliged to grind corn for meal so she could have corn meal mush on which the family might subsist. But through all these hardships the family had good health and really enjoyed pioneer life. They went to church and Sunday-school and tried their best to see the bright side of things. The years of drouth (sic) came, bringing more privation, then the hail storm worked their ruin now and then, but through it all our subject and his family maintained stout hearts and with willing hands sought in every way to retrieve their losses and to constantly add to the improvements of their home. And their efforts were eminently successful in every way as now can be seen by the fine farm of five hundred and sixty acres, the good home, barns, fences and fine groves. Since our subject's death in 1905, Mrs. Hesselgesser has been managing the farm assisted by the younger boys.

     Mr. Hesselgesser lives in the affectionate remembrance of his family and his many friends. He was a man whose strength of character endeared him to all with whom he came in contact and brought him in close touch with all matters pertaining to the general welfare of the community. He served with honor in several public capacities, such as school officer and assessor, and was prominent in political affairs.

Z. U. BUCK     
     In compiling a list of the prominent business men of Franklin county, who have aided so materially in the upbuilding of the commercial interests of that locality, and are widely and favorably known, a foremost place must be given Z. U. Buck, who is engaged in the mercantile business at Naponee. Mr. Buck has been in business here since 1897, at that time opening a general merchandise store, and has built up a lucrative trade through his industry and honest dealing. He is highly esteemed as a citizen, and is one of the successful and prosperous residents of his county. In the past ten years his business has increased four hundred per cent., which is a pretty good gain.

     Mr. Buck is a son of George Buck, who settled in Franklin county in 1871, the following year starting the first store in the county, and his was the first frame building ever erected in Franklin county, which was at Franklin. He and his partner, Mr. Greenwood, laid out that town site and gave away lots for a park, schools and churches, also to any settlers who would build there. They attended strictly to the business of the store, selling goods for a distance of fifty miles each way from the town. George Buck was a member of the Episcopal church, a strong Republican, high degree Mason and veteran of the Civil war, having been a member of a Vermont regiment, serving for four years.

     Our subject's mother was Miss Lucella Hunt, of Franklin county, Vermont, daughter of Elijah Hunt. Mr. Buck has one brother James E., residing in Lincoln, engaged in the life insurance business. Another brother, George, Jr., is associated with the Omaha Rubber Company, and lives at Omaha, while a sister, Cora, is married and living at Lincoln.

     Mr. Buck married Miss Jennie Hart, of Brown county, Kansas, daughter of W. H. Hart, now of Seattle, Washington, a dealer in real estate at that place. He is a son of Thomas Hart, who came to Brown county, Kansas, in 1852, and took a prominent part in the early history of that state. To Mr. Buck and his wife the following children were born: Harold, aged twelve; Helen, aged six, and Lucile, four years old.

     Soon after Mr. Buck settled in Franklin county he was elected deputy county treasurer, and served for four years, and later was postmaster at Franklin. He is a member of the school board, and active in local affairs. In political sentiment he is a Democrat.


     John Riggs is one of the best known and most prominent residents of this part of the country. He was appointed the first sheriff, later elected to fill a second term, and also was one of the organizers of Sheridan county.

     Mr. Riggs was born in Washington county, Texas, in 1854. His father was of American stock, a farmer and stock raiser, and among the earliest settlers of Texas. His mother, Miss Anna Beauchamp, was born in Dublin, Ireland. Our subject was a baby, the youngest of three children, when he lost his mother. His father also died while he was yet a boy. When eleven years of age he went to New Mexico with John H. Chisham, staying with him until he sold the stock to Hunter & Evans, in 1878 going with the latter across the plains to

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Sheridan county. In 1879 he went back to Mexico after the balance of the stock. Here they remained until 1885, when settlement forced them to move, and taking fifty-five thousand cattle they went on to Montana. After helping to move the cattle Mr. Riggs bought the old H. C. Barr ranch, and lived there twenty years. He had invested considerable of his earnings in the Hunter & Evans Company, but the winter of 1885-86 caused them such a loss it broke the concern and our subject also sustained a heavy loss.

     In 1884 Mr. Riggs married Miss Amma Irwin, a Texas girl, who was a daughter of Aeek and Mrs. L. L. Irwin, both of American stock, among the earliest settlers of Texas. Mrs. L. L. Irwin still lives in Sheridan county, Nebraska, with her son. Two brother were early settlers here and it was while on a visit here to see them that Mr. Riggs met Miss Amma Irwin at her brother's home on the N. Bar ranch, or better known as the old Newman ranch, which Mr. Riggs also helped to establish. It was here that Mr. Riggs and Miss Irwin were married. Two children have been born to them, Bennett and Effie.

     After Mr. Riggs had served two terms as sheriff he settled on the old ranch, remaining there until 1898, when they moved to Kansas. There he was appointed deputy sheriff of Sherman county, and in attempting to capture two train robbers single-handed he was shot six times and so severely wounded that he was laid up for nearly three years, while the culprits were both killed during the encounter. He was offered large sums of money by the railroad companies for the brave deed, but would never accept a cent.

     Afterwards he returned to this county on a visit and his children persuaded him to remain. He is now nicely located on the Niobrara river in section 10, township 30, range 43, about one mile from his first location, and contented to live quietly from now on, as he says he has seen all the frontier life he cares for. Mr. Riggs is a Democrat.

     On another page of this volume we present an interesting picture of the "old pals on the ranch," showing John Riggs and three comrades.

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     John C. Dam, the subject of this sketch, was born in 1859, raised in Denmark and received his education there, and is one of the many successful farmers of Sheridan county. His father, Christian M. Dam, never left the old country, and died when our subject was a young man, leaving a wife and five children. When twenty years of age he entered the army and served seventeen months, then started out to make his fortune. He came to America in 1884. Upon leaving Omaha, where he remained for one year, he located one mile north of his present home, taking pre-emption, and still holds this claim. He also homesteaded in the Sand Hills, selling this out for forty-eight hundred dollars.

     In 1901 he was married to Miss Mary K. Jorgesen, who was born in Denmark in 1878 and came to this country with her parents in 1892. Three children were born to them, namely: Anna, Henry and Emma, all born in this locality

     Just as Mr. Dam was nicely started on his ranch the dry years came on and the best he could do was barley raise seed for the next year's crops. These were the darkest times for our subject, but he struggled along alone and in later years has had marked success in all his undertakings.

     He has added to his homestead and now owns fourteen hundred and forty acres, half of which could be easily farmed, and now has under cultivation about three hundred acres, running one hundred and seventy head of cattle, with just horses enough for his own use. He is engaged exclusively in farming and the stock raising business, and has made many improvements on his ranch in the way of buildings, fences, etc., and feels well satisfied with what he has accomplished.

     Although Mr. Dam is a Democrat, he has never been able to devote any time to taking active part in politics.


     W. N. Rogers is a prosperous business man and one of the best breeders of thoroughbred Herefords in the western states.

     Mr. Rogers was born and raised in Jo Davis county, Illinois, and it was in that locality that he first began the breeding of high-grade stock. He came to Nebraska in 1883, and in starting his work was convinced that the Herefords were the best breed in the west, as they will graze and rustle for themselves, grow fat and keep in good condition on the prairies where other breeds will starve, and besides are great beef cattle, and to raise good beef cattle is the principal aim of the stock raisers of the west. The Hereford cattle are the champions of the International Live Stock Exhibition.

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     Shadeland Park Herefords, the well known herd of whitefaces, was started in 1890, and there was then selected as a foundation cows bred by such breeders as John W. Smith, of Herefordshire, England, and G. W. Milikin, of Elyria, Ohio. These females were rich in the blood of Anxiety, Grove III, Lord Wilton, the monarchs of the breed. Then were added females from the well known herd of show cattle from the herd of Makin Bros., and later on Mr. Rogers went in person to the great show and breeding herd of Adams Earl, of Lafayette, Indiana, which then contained more of the blood of Lord Wilton and the Grove III than any herd in the world. From this herd was selected some of the best females that money would buy, and these added to the then choice lot of females made a foundation for a herd that any man might well feel proud of. There have been, from time to time, some choice females only added to this herd, consisting mostly of the tops at the great Hereford sales. As the bull is one-half the herd, it might be well to make mention of what has been used on the Shadeland Park herd of females. The first bought and used in this herd was Vincent II 42942, bred by Makin Bros., of Florence, Kansas. His sire Vincent 16691, by Sir Evelyn, by Lord Wilton 4057. Dam Berrington II, by Leader, a son of the Grove III, a grand combination of the Lord Wilton and the Grove III blood. The sire of Vincent II 42942, Vincent 16691, was shown very successfully by Makin Bros., winning in the season of 1889-'90 seventeen first and sweepstakes and seven second prizes. Vincent II 42942 was also a prize winner. At the World's Fair in 1893 he won fourth in aged class and sweepstakes as produce of cow. He attained the weight of twenty-eight hundred pounds at the age of five years. The bull to follow him was Anxiety Monarch 63204, by the great breeding bull Juryman 30279, by Anxiety III 4466, bred by Tom Clark, of Beecher, Illinois.

     Anxiety Monarch 63204, owned and bred by W. N. Rogers, at the age of five years attained the weight of twenty-eight hundred pounds. Anxiety Monarch 63204 was only shown at State Fair, Lincoln, Nebraska, in 1900, winning first in class. Headed the first prize aged herd. His two-year-old heifer winning first in class, and a yearling heifer third in class. Anxiety Monarch 63204 was very unfortunately injured in a railroad wreck while returning home from the State Fair, from which he died shortly after, leaving only a limited number of his sons and daughters in the Shadeland Park herd, yet the notoriety this herd now enjoys must be attributed to the blood of Anxiety Monarch 63204, who was pronounced by the great judges to be one of the best Hereford bulls of the breed.

     Beau Donald 28th 105168 was secured after the death of Anxiety Monarch 63204, at the price of one thousand dollars when ten months old, to be used in the Shadeland Park herd. It was also considered by Mr. Rogers, in order to carry out his view on breeding and establishing a type of Hereford cattle peculiar to his ideas, he must do it with the blood of Anxiety Monarch, and accordingly he has selected and put at the head of the head the massive son of Anxiety Monarch 63204

     Monarch of Shadeland III 106787, owned and bred by Mr. Rogers, at the head of the Shadeland Park herd, weighed three thousand pounds at four years of age. This young bull was shown as a three-year-old and only at State Fair, Lincoln, 1903, winning first in class and sweepstakes; also sweepstakes as produce of cow, and sweepstakes one of four, as get of sire. In 1904 he was second in class, beaten only by Beau Donald 28th, headed first prize, aged herd and sweepstakes as produce of cow at Nebraska State Fair. He won first in class, headed first prize aged herd, sweepstakes as produce of cow and also stood at head of herd winning sweepstakes silver cup, all breeds competing (cup valued at two hundred and fifty dollars), at Interstate Fair, Sioux City, Iowa. Second in class aged bulls, sweepstakes as produce of cow at Topeka, Kansas, 1904.

     It might also be of interest to mention some of the winning of Beau Donald 28th 105168, who is the assistant of Monarch of Shadeland III. Beau Donald 28th won first in class aged bulls in 1902 as a three-year-old, and sweepstakes, senior class, two years or over. He also stood at head of first prize aged herd, Nebraska State Fair, in 1902. In 1903 he won second, being beaten by Monarch of Shadeland III, at Nebraska State Fair. In 1904 he was first in aged class and stood at head of second prize aged herd (first prize herd headed by Monarch of Shadeland III). He also won sweepstakes, two years or over, at the State Fair. He was first in aged class sweepstakes bull, also headed first prize aged herd at Topeka, in 1904; also first aged class sweepstakes bull and headed first prize aged herd at Hutchinson, Kansas, in 1904; also first aged class sweepstakes bull and headed first prize aged herd at Colorado State Fair, Pueblo, in 1904.

     It is well to mention the Shadeland Park show herds of twelve head, which won one hundred and five prizes in 1904, showing over four states at the following places: State

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Fair, Lincoln, Nebraska; Interstate Fair, Sioux City, Iowa; Hutchinson, Kansas, and State Fair, Pueblo, Colorado. Our first prize aged herd stood first at every show. Our young herd also took first at every show. The young herd were all sired by our sweepstakes herd bulls. Our second aged herd was only beaten once over these four states. We also showed one yearling heifer that was not defeated in age or class; also one heifer calf that won first in every class and one that won four second and one third prize.

     This a record any breeder might well feel proud of - one hundred and six prizes at five shows. Young stock of both sexes for sale at all times. From now on no bull can do breeding in the Shadeland Park herd that has not won a sweepstakes prize at either a state or national show.

     It is worthy of mention that Beau Donalds won more prizes in 1904 at World's Fair, state and nation shows than any other family of Herefords. In 1905, at three shows, Mr. Rogers won fifty-eight ribbons; then in 1906, at State Fair only, winning sixteen prizes, and in 1907 at three shows he won sixty-nine ribbons. He bred the females that won the championship at Lincoln for five successive years. At the sales in Omaha for the past eight years he has always been at the top and in 1906 his females topped the list. During the last four years Mr. Roger's stock has won more prizes at the Nebraska State fair than any other herd in the state. He has now one hundred and twenty thoroughbred animals in his herd, which is well known all over the United States, and breeders from all over the country come to his ranch to purchase cattle. One-year stock from this farm was sold and delivered into seven different states.

     Mr. Rogers believes that in order to make a success of any undertaking it is necessary to give it all his time and attention, and this he has done with his stock. He is aided in his work by his two sons, Amos and Henry, both of whom have their father's spirit and energy. Mr. Roger's wife attends many of the stock shows with her husband and takes a deep interest in all his affairs and if anything is more pleased than he with the success he has attained. He is often called upon to act as judge at the big stock exhibitions, and is recognized as one of the best informed men in this business to be found anywhere.

     Mr. Rogers and his family reside on his ranch four miles east of McCook, Redwillow county, Nebraska. This is called Shadeland Park, and comprises eight hundred and thirty acres of fine land, mostly on the river bottom, with many beautiful shade trees well distributed over the farm, from which it derives its name.


     William S. Coker, residing in section 32, township 24, range 49, is one of the prominent citizens of Box Butte county. He has devoted his entire career to agricultural pursuits, has gained considerable property, and the esteem and respect of his fellowmen by his integrity and upright character.

     Mr. Coker was born in Morgan county, Illinois, in 1857. His parents were of American stock, the father a farmer, and they moved to Missouri after the close of the Civil war, settling in Mercer county, where our subject grew to manhood. He assisted his parents in carrying on the home farm, and during all his young manhood was afflicted with the malady known as fever and ague, so prevalent in new countries. In 1878 he left home and went to Iowa, but only remained for a few months, then to Kansas, where he spent about eighteen months. There he lived in Ness county, which was an entirely undeveloped part of the state, and he went through pioneer experiences, later removing to Ellsworth county, but did not like the new country and decided to try a new location, so he moved to Missouri, near his old home, and lived there one year. He first struck Nebraska in 1882, locating in York county, and remained there for two years, following farm work. From there he came to Box Butte county, driving from York county with a team, making the trip overland, as had on all his other journeys in this part of the west, from Missouri to Kansas and back again. When he landed here he had a yoke of cattle, which was almost his sole capital. He immediately filed on a homestead and "batched it" for about three years, during which time he did all the work of breaking his land, hauling and freighting with a team of oxen. He went through the usual pioneer experiences, saw the surrounding country settled, railroads put through, towns started, and was an eyewitness of all the incidents which took place in connection with the Indian uprising, etc., in this region.

     Mr. Coker is now owner of a four hundred and eighty-acre ranch, all fenced and complete, with good buildings, etc., engaging principally in stock raising, and has made a great success of his work.

     In 1890 Mr. Coker was married to Jane Al-

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exander. Mrs. Coker was daughter of Stewart Alexander, a Scotchman, who lived and died in his native land. She and her mother, who was Miss Margaret Kerr, also reared in Scotland, came to America when the former was an infant of nine months, settling in Nebraska, and Mrs. Coker was a homesteader in Box Butte county prior to her marriage. Six children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Coker, namely: Clyde, Lyle, Roy, Dora, Eldin and Helen. The family occupy a handsome home and are well liked by all who know them.


     John I. Dawson, for many years past a resident of Keya Paha county, Nebraska, owns a fine farm in section 32, township 32, range 22, Garfield precinct. He is a present retired, making his home with a daughter in Springview.

     Mr. Dawson was born in Richmondale, Ross county, Ohio, January 31, 1839. He never saw his father, as he was killed by an accident three months before John was born, and when he was but eighteen months old his mother also died, leaving him a orphan without brother or sister. He was forced to make his own way in the world at an early age, when nine years old hiring out to a man with whom he lived for ten years, receiving nothing, not even schooling, for his services, and then ran away and went to Illinois. He started out with only a quarter of a dollar and after walking most of the way from Ohio to Illinois, arrived in Peoria with only a dime as the total of his cash resources. He worked out by the month in Stark county for some time and later rented land on which he farmed for some years. In 1862 he enlisted in Company A Sixty-fifth Illinois Infantry, and served until the close of the war, being mustered out of service and discharged at Chicago in 1865. At the close of the war he went to Marion county, Illinois, where he married and farmed for three years. Removing to Missouri, he followed farming in Nodaway and Atchison counties until removing to Nebraska.

     Mr. Dawson came to Keya Paha county in 1883, taking up a homestead in section 5, township 32, range 22, from which he derives a comfortable income. He now owns six hundred and forty acres of good land, two hundred and forty of which is cultivated, divided between a son and two other tenants who farm the land. Since coming here he has endured very hard times, and, in fact, has had nothing but hardship from his childhood. He is now content to take life easy for the balance of his days, leaving to other the strain of active labor.

     In 1864 Mr. Dawson married Sarah J. McKinus, born in Whitestown, Pennsylvania. They had one child, which only lived eight months, the mother soon following, on February 8, 1868, aged twenty-four years. He was again married in Missouri in 1870 to Miss Elizabeth J. McCray, a native of Ohio. She died December 5, 1905. Two children were born of this marriage - Laura, now Mrs. Hartman, residing in Springview, and Henry M., married and living on his homestead near the father's old place.

     Mr. Dawson is a Republican, having cast his maiden bote for Abraham Lincoln, and has remained true to the party ever since. He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic and the U. V. U.


     Anton Benish, whose fine farm in Trognitz precinct bespeaks thrift and painstaking care in its operation, is a gentleman of wide experience, and is classed among the substantial and worthy citizens of Cheyenne county, Nebraska.

     Mr. Benish was born in the village of Kopidlo, Bohemia, June 15, 1848, a son of John and Katie (Habrich) Benish. He grew up in his native land, during his boyhood receiving the usual stern training in which the children of Bohemia are reared, following farming as an occupation mostly. When he reached the age of twenty-six years he began life for himself, took passage on an emigrant steamer for America at Bremen Haven in the Deutchland, landing in New York city in October, 1874, after a voyage of two weeks. He came direct to Chicago, Illinois, where he had a brother, Albert Benish, who had come to this country several years before, and has made that city his home for thirty-seven years. Anton spent seven months there, then went to Iowa, locating in Chelsea, Tama county, and lived there for thirteen years, most of the time holding the position of section foreman on the Northwestern. In the spring of 1887 he came to Cheyenne county, taking up a homestead in section 4, township 16, range 52, and began to develop a farm. He passed through many privation and pioneer experiences, but remained determined, fighting every hardship and gradually getting ahead, until he now owns jointly with other members of his family, a valuable tract of nine hundred and sixty acres.

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Of this he has placed one hundred and fifty acres under the plow. He has a complete set of good farm buildings, including a comfortable and convenient residence, and also has wells, windmills and all necessary farm machinery. He engages in diversified farming and stock raising, keeping about one hundred head of cattle and fifty horses, owning some very fine animals.

     Mr. Benish was married September 10, 1874, in Bohemia, to Yatta Daimel, who was born and reared in that country, of German stock; her parents, Popper and Elizabeth Daimel, are dead. To Mr. Benish and his estimable wife the following children have been born: Albert, Joseph and Anton, Jr., all owners of fine homesteads adjoining their father's place; Mary, wife of John Nelson, now living in Seattle, Washington; James, also a homesteader here; Annie, married to Albert Nelson, living at Cheyenne county, and William, the youngest, at home. They are all intelligent, industrious and worthy citizens, and the entire family share in the esteem and respect of all. Mr. Benish is prominent in neighborhood and county affairs, and has helped materially in the building up of his locality. At present he is serving in the capacity of treasurer of school district No. 62. Politically he is a Republican. The family is Catholic in religious faith.


     The gentleman above named is one of the enterprising and prosperous farmers and ranchmen of Sioux county, Nebraska. He resides on section 3, township 32, range 57, and is widely known as one of the prominent pioneers of this region. He owns a fine property and no one is better known or more highly respected than our subject.

     Mr. Merriam was born in Bureau county, Illinois, January 4, 1857. He came of good old American blood, and his ancestors have been prominent in the history of this country for many generations past, of which fact he is justly proud, and he is a fit representative of his family. His father, Homer T., was born in Ohio in 1823, grew up there and as a young man spent a number of years in Illinois, then in Iowa, and coming to Sioux county, Nebraska, with his family in 1890, where he died in 1898. He married Miss Nancy Carpenter, also of Ohio. Our subject has one brother who still lives in Illinois.

     The family left Illinois when James was a lad of twelve years, and from there they went to Iowa, where he was reared and educated, starting out for himself when he was twenty years of age. He first went to farming on rented land, and followed that occupation for about twenty years in Iowa. In 1895 he removed to Deadwood, South Dakota, and spent three years in that vicinity, then came to Nebraska, locating in Sioux county, where his father had been for several years, the latter's death occurring in 1898 at his home in township 32, range 57.

     Our subject located on his present farm in 1899, taking up the land as a homestead, and improved it in good shape, proving up on it in due time. He has since added to his original quarter, and at the present time is proprietor of about four hundred acres, all fenced and well improved, using about sixty acres as a grain farm, and the balance for hay and pasture for his stock. He has been in the main successful since coming here, although he has met with loss and disappointments on account of the failure of crops, etc., and in 1906 had the misfortune to lose a large portion of his crops from hailstorms which swept the locality.

     Mr. Merriam was married November 5, 1899, to Ethel R. Garretson, daughter of William H. Garretson, of Sioux county, and an adjoining neighbor. Mr. and Mrs. Merriam have two children living - Homer T., aged eight years, and Orlene G., now two years of age. Rilla and Nellie are dead. The family have a pleasant home, and have a host of good friends in the community.

     Mr. Merriam is an Independent voter.


     The above mentioned gentleman is among the best known breeders of pure bred Duroc Jersey hogs in western Nebraska. He resides in Ragan, Harlan county, Nebraska, where he has built up a fine business to which he devotes his entire time and attention. His place is known all over this section as "Sunnyslope", the celebrated home of the herd of Duroc Jerseys familiar to all breeders and buyers of pure bred hogs wherever this business is carried on.

     Mr. Tillman began in the hog business in 1897 at Dana, Kansas, and in 1900 came to Ragan where he has since lived. Here he owns fourteen acres of land, but does no farming, buying all the feed he needs for his stock. He handles all of the leading strains, and has at head of his herd Jumbo Ideal and Crimson Dandy, the highest priced yearling boar ever sold up to that time. Mr. Tillman sold a

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one-half interest to Messrs. Seller & Sons at Huntley for five hundred and five dollars and has since sold his entire interest to them in a pig out of Nebraska Wonder by Crimson Wonder and Jumbo Ideal 43037 by Jumbo's Perfection 19901, a celebrated animal which won the third prize at the World's Fair, and later at the Nebraska State Fair captured the first prize twice, besides third place at five years old. Both Jumbo's Ideal and Crimson Dandy were shown in 1907. He holds a sale of their stock every year, and in 1907 held a sale of sows, which was attended by many of the largest dealers in hogs in the state of Nebraska. His success has been phenomenal since coming here, and he has sold his product all the state, and each year the fame of the red hog is spreading as farmers and stockmen recognize their value as an all-round favorite.

     Our subject has had one hundred and seventy head, but now has ninety, which includes some of the finest stock to be found in the country.

     For eight years Mr. Tillman was connected with the Rock Island railroad, and was also station agent at Gretna, Kansas, for that railway for several years. He has been connected with railroading for thirteen years. It was while working at Gretna that he started in the hog business, at first with a few pure bred Duroc Jerseys. He gradually increased his herd and worked successfully into the business and richly deserves the success he has attained through perseverance and honesty of dealing.

     Mr. Tillman was married in 1887 to Anna Brown, of Otterville, Missouri. He has a family of twelve children, nine of whom are living. One son, George, July 9, 1907, at the age of fourteen years. Two other sons died in 1905 at the age of five and six years.


     Auburn W. Atkins for the past many years a leading citizen of Morrill, formerly Cheyenne county, Nebraska, is proprietor of an extensive and valuable ranch in Court House Rock precinct. He has been identified with the growth and upbuilding of that region in the line of agriculture until a history of its development would be incomplete without mention of his labors there and the pioneer experiences which he has passed through.

     Mr. Atkins was born in Ashtabula county, Ohio, on April 16, 1859, a son of Levi and Persis A. (Clarke) Atkins. His father was a soldier in the Union army during the war, and was one of those brave men who never returned from the field of battle; the mother survived her husband by ten years, at which time our subject left his boyhood home and went south to attend school at Greenville, Mississippi, making his home with an uncle at the place. After three years there he returned to Ohio, and after a visit of a few months migrated to Hamburg, Iowa, arriving there in August, 1876, where for a year he attended school. He next went to Atchison county, Missouri, spending about two years there, at the same time attending at Hamburg. From there he came to Ogallala, Nebraska, where he entered the employ of Sheidley Brothers, large ranchmen, for whom he followed the range for three years, then went with the Ogallala Land & Cattle Company, remaining with them until 1887. Prior to this, about 1884 he had filed on a pre-emption claim, located on Cedar creek, Cheyenne county, and also took a homestead and timber claim, which he sold to the Belmont Irrigation and Water Power Company in 1893. He finally located on his present ranch on section 22 and 23, township 19, range 49, and now owns two thousand acres with immense tracts of hay and range land, on which he runs about one thousand cattle and two hundred horses. He has one of the finest equipped ranches in the region, which is beautifully situated on the North Platte river, and known far and near as the "Flying V Ranch." Mr. Atkins is a genuine old-timer and widely known stockman, and a man who has done his full share in the success which has come to his region. He combines the hospitality of the south and the cordiality of the west; a man of refinement and education he is at ease in any gathering of men, east or west.

     Mr. Atkins was married on July 16, 1893, at Sidney, Nebraska, to Miss Lulia Barnhart, a native of Bedford county, Pennsylvania, who came to Nebraska when a small girl with her parents, David A. and Malinda (Moore) Barnhart. They have four children, named as follows: Clarke W., Allen B., Auburn H., and Lulia Virginia, all at home and who form a most interesting family of youngsters, of whom our subject is justly proud. Mr. Atklins is a Democrat, and in 1898 was nominated for the state legislature and defeated by only seventy votes in one of the strongest Republican districts in the state, carrying his own county by a large majority. He takes an active and leading part in local and county politics and is a worthy representative of the people of his section. The family are all communicants of the Episcopal church. Mr. At-

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