NEGenWeb Project
Resource Center, On-Line Library




with the class of 1864. After leaving college Mr. Clough came west, locating at Ackley, Iowa, where he opened a law office being engaged in his professional duties there until 1873, when he removed to Boulder, Colorado, to engage in the live-stock business. Somewhat later he moved his cattle to Laramie, Wyoming, establishing himself there in 1886. For a number of years Mr. Clough continued to engage in handling and running cattle but he had looked the country over and decided he wanted to locate permanently somewhere in good grazing land and with this end in view came to Box Butte county in 1892, locating a ranch ten miles southwest of the town of Alliance, where he remained until 1918. Mr. Clough prospered exceedingly here on the high prairies and as the shadows of life began to lengthen concluded that it was time for him to take life a little easier and enjoy his hard earned fortune. He sold his cattle and rented his ten thousand acre ranch, moving into the city to live. He built a fine modern home where he and Mrs. Clough are prepared to live, travel and enjoy the remainder of their days in comfort and happiness.
   In 1869, Mr. Clough married Miss Elizabeth Pardee, at Ackley, Iowa. Mrs. Clough was the daughter of Erastus and Sophie (Carter) Pardee, the former a native of Michigan. She is next to the youngest in a family of six children born to her parents, received an excellent education in the public schools of her native district and since her marriage has become the mother of two children: Charles E., Jr., who graduated from the Alliance high school and after engaging in business married Miss Abbigal Hill, and they now live at Minatare, Nebraska, where Mr. Clough is in the hardware business, and Elsie Clough Estes, who also graduated from the high school in Omaha, and now lives in the country near Alliance.
   From first locating in the Panhandle Mr. Clough has had great faith in what is now becoming one of the most productive sections not only of Nebraska, but the entire country and be says that he is willing to go on record any day as saying that he believes no country can be found "that will beat the sand hills of Nebraska for stock-raising." He is a broad gauged, liberal minded man who keeps abreast of the progress of this country and firmly believes in progressive movements for Box Butte county and Alliance and in support of this is ever ready with his energy, time and money to "boost" an enterprise when convinced that it tends to the development and betterment of civic and communal conditions. In politics he is a staunch supporter of the Republican party while his fraternal affiliations are with the Elks and the Modern Woodmen.

    ENOS S. DE LA MATTER, whose many years of service as county judge has but strengthened a reputation with the people of Scottsbluff county, as a man of public spirit and sound judgment, has been a resident of Nebraska since 1884. Since then he has been one of her most loyal sons, taking an interest in everything pertaining to her welfare, and identifying himself with movements that have helped in her development.
   Judge De La Matter was born in Grundy county, Illinois, June 6, 1855. His parents were Cyrus and Mary Ann (Rowe) De La Matter, the former of whom was born in Canada in 1820, and died in January, 1890, and the latter in Indiana in 1825, and died in August, 1863. The paternal grandfather was Martin De La Matter, who spent his entire life in Canada, where he was a farmer. The maternal grandfather was Robert Rowe, who was born in Edinburg, Scotland, emigrated to the United States, and died on his farm in Illinois, in 1878. The parents of judge De La Matter were married in La Salle county, Illinois, and they became the parents of four children, the following three surviving: Robert M., who is a farmer in Scottsbluff county; Enos S., who resides at Gering; and Sabina, who is the wife of Martin J. Tubbs, who is a farmer near Missoula, Montana. The mother of Judge De La Matter was a member of the Presbyterian church and his father of the Methodist Episcopal church. The latter contracted a second marriage, Rachel Barnes becoming his second wife, and two of their four children are living, namely: Cyrus, who is a resident of Sterling, Illinois, and Mrs. Mary Ann Terrill, who lives at Sheridan, Illinois.
   Enos S. De La Matter was reared on his father's farm and spent some years cultivating it. He was afforded educational advantages, after attending the local schools becoming a student in the normal school at Valparaiso, Indiana. In 1884 he came to Nebraska and for two and a half years worked as a carpenter in Buffalo county, In June, 1886, he homesteaded in Cheyenne county, in what is now Scottsbluff county, and in November following he came to the county as a resident and has continued here ever since, soon being recognized as a vigorous and dependable citizen, intelligently concerned in the material, social and political development of this section. He was soon called upon to accept public responsibility,



and at a time when the county needed strong, honest, constructive officials. He served as justice of the peace from 1887 to 1895, when he resigned to become a member of the board of county commissioners, which position he held for six years. In 1901 he was elected county judge and has been continuously reelected since then, showing on the bench great legal ability, open-mindedness, and straightforward justice.
   In 1900 Judge De La Matter was united in marriage to Mrs. Mettie A. Lovell, who was born in Grundy county, Illinois. Her parents came from Illinois to Buffalo county, Nebraska, where her father, Isaiah Casteel, was a farmer, but later moved to Scottsbluff county and died here. Judge and Mrs. De La Matter have two children, namely: Mary and Ena. Politically he is a Republican and an important party factor in the county, and fraternally is a Mason. In all public matters during the past few years in which good citizenship was a feature, he worked in harmonious coöperation with his fellow citizens.

    JOHN C. McCORKLE, manager of the Nebraska Land Company of Alliance, is a well known and highly respected citizen of Box Butte county, and has been one of its most substantial stockraisers and ranchmen, as he is one of the early settlers of the Panhandle, having passed more than thirty-four years in western Nebraska. Wonderful changes have been wrought in that time and, in a way, they may be typified by the comparison between Mr. McCorkle's first home, a tent in summer and a log house for winter, on a lonely wind swept prairie, with his present handsome residence in the city. In all this change and development Mr. McCorkle has taken an active part and today is one of the foremost factors in opening up the still available virgin farm lands of the county.
   Mr. McCorkle was born in Columbia, Iowa, the son of John G. and Susan (Rumsey) McCorkle the former a native of Indiana. He was next to the youngest in a family of nine children born to his parents and remembers with a whimsical smile that the first money he earned was helping his brother herd sheep at a salary of ten cents a day. John McCorkle was a farmer in Iowa so that the children were reared in the country, attended the public school near their home which required a walk of three miles back and forth each day. The boy remained at home until his seventeenth year, then worked for his brother driving oxen breaking hazel brush land in Iowa.
   On March 12, 1878, Mr. McCorkle married Miss Flora McMannis, born in Oskaloosa, Iowa, the daughter of Jawhue McMannis, and to this union four children were born: Minet, died in infancy; Inez L. (McCorkle) Dunning, a widow who has one child six years old and now resides in Alliance with her parents, was a graduate of the Peru Normal school and taught in the Alliance schools for eight years; Orville, deceased, and Norman A., a graduate of the high school at Alliance who later took a special course in the Boyle Business College of Omaha, then entered the superintendent's office of the Burlington Railroad, remaining three years before he enlisted in the navy when war was declared against Germany. Mr. McCorkle was assistant recruiting officer at Kansas City four months before being transferred to New York and shortly assigned to duty abroad the Iowan, a freighter. He made one trip across the Atlantic on her when she was made into a transport, following which he made three trips to Europe safely, and was mustered out of the service in Kansas City in April, 1919, and at present is located on a two thousand acre ranch in which he holds a large interest.
   John McCorkle came to western Nebraska in July, 1886, on account of his wife's health. They camped out at first in a tent on Pine Ridge, Dawes county, forty miles northwest of the present town of Alliance. During that first summer he broke sod on the prairie for the amusement of it as he had become very expert in this method of plowing in his youthful days in the hazel brush of Iowa. The country was thinly populated, settlers were few and far between and the Panhandle of that day deserved the name of "wild and woolly west." Early in the fall a heavy snow fell and Mr. McCorkle and his wife were unable to make the trip back to the home at Superior, Nebraska, so Mr. McCorkle built a comfortable log house, took a preemption claim, remained during the winter of 1886 and spring of 1887, proved up on it and was thus enabled to put a mortgage on the land and raised sixteen hundred dollars in cash for his living expenses and also bought a good team of oxen, the best animals for breaking prairie sod. He then filed on a homestead, commuted this claim and raised another sixteen hundred dollars with which money he engaged in the live-stock business. That was the heigh-day of the cattle business as there were vast stretches of open range over which the great baronial cattle companies ranged immense herds, while smaller dealers



were also able to take advantage of the government privileges. Mr. McCorkle bought and sold live stock on a large scale from 1887 to 1890, living during that period on the homestead. The latter year he moved into the town of Hemingford, there establishing a cattle and hog market of his own and at the same time began to deal in horses. In 1893, he shipped two cars of the finest horse flesh ever gathered together in the northwest as they were from four to six years old and weighed from twelve to fifteen hundred pounds, selling at about seventy-seven dollars apiece in the St. Louis market, a remarkable price for that time. In 1895 Mr. McCorkle sold his business to accept a position as foreman of the Carey and Arle Cattle Company at a salary of twenty-five dollars for himself and wife, who cooked for the outfit, but it needs not be said that the salary was very soon raised when the owners found what an excellent manager they had. For nearly eleven years the McCorkles remained with this company who made it well worth their while to do so. In the fall of 1905, they came to Alliance to live and Mr. McCorkle went into the real estate firm of Watkins and Tagean, which then became Watkins, Tagean and McCorkle, though Mr. McCorkle still had outside business interests as a live-stock man. Two years later Mr. McCorkle bought out his partners in the real estate branch and reorganized it as the Nebraska Land and Loan Company, becoming its chief executive and manager. Under his management anyone can buy an interest in the company, as it will sell a customer a farm at an agreed price, the customer holding the deed and title in his own name and when the land is sold he receives one-half the advance on the land for his profit in the company, which incurs all the expense of handling and selling the land, thus putting the time and expense against the stockholder's investment, though he holds the security, which makes a most satisfactory and absolutely safe investment. The office of the company is located on the first floor of the First National Bank, on Box Butte Avenue, where the books show more than a hundred satisfied customers, At the present time Mr. McCorkle and his son Norman are in charge of the business which has proved a success in every way and a most desirable investment. Their farms and ranches offer many and varied opportunities to anyone who has money on which they desire a good return and at the same time an absolutely sound proposition.

    FREDERICK A. BALD. -- In every community will be found quiet, industrious business men following different vocations, without whom the ordinary industries of modern civilized life could not go on, and very often it will be found that they are self made men, having unaided, built up their fortunes. Such a type of the progressive and prosperous business men of the Panhandle is exemplified in Frederick Bald, the president of the Wyoming Northeastern Oil Company, also engaged in the real estate business and in the practice of his profession.
   Mr. Bald was born at Aurora, Nebraska, October 13, 1881, the son of Louis B. and Matilda (Kemper) Bald, the former born and reared in the vicinity of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was an ambitious young man and after attaining his majority determined that he would win a fortune for himself and believing that the west offered more oppotunities (sic) emigrated from his native state and settled in Grant county, Wisconsin, but did not prosper there as he wished and learning of the fine farms to he had in Nebraska came here in 1876, locating near Aurora on a farm he bought from the railroad company. Mr. Bald arrived in this commonwealth with very little of what we term "worldly goods," but was able to pay the required eight dollars an acre for his land, and that his vision of the future was a wise one may be gained from the fact that today this same farm would bring more than three hundred dollars an acre on the market were it for sale. Frederick, better known to his friends as "Art," attended the public school near his home during the winters and worked on farms in the summer time and tells that at one time he worked an eight hour shift all right only it was twice a day, eight hours before noon and another eight hours after dinner, receiving for his labor fifty cents a day and well recalls that they always had salt fish for breakfast. After completing the district school the boy took a four year course in the Aurora high school, graduating in 1900. The following two years he taught in the country schools then. matriculated in the law school of the State University at Lincoln, obtained his degree of LL.B. and was admitted to practice in the courts of Nebraska on June 1, 1904. He opened an office in Aurora in partnership with C. P. Craft, a class mate from the university and they continued to be associated until 1909, when Mr. Bald went to Watertown, South Dakota, to engage in a real estate business. In 1911, the year of the great drought, he returned to Nebraska, locat-



ing at Central City, to engage in the practice of his profession seven years. In 1916, he was appointed to fill the unexpired term of Edward Patterson as attorney of Merrick county, and two years later came to Alliance. Since locating here Mr. Bald has entered into partnership with L. C. Thomas and they are engaged in business under the firm name of Thomas-Bald Investment Company. Within a short time they have been the moving spirits in the organization of the Wyoming-Northeastern Oil Company, which has located and leased some thirteen thousand acres of oil lands in the fields of eastern Wyoming. The company is incorporated for a million and is preparing to open up their business on an extensive scale. The officers are: F. A. Bald, president; C. M. Loomey, vice-president; L. C. Thomas, secretary; and A. M. Miller, president of the American State Bank of Hemingford, treasurer, while the board of directors consists of F. A. Bald, L. C. Thomas, C. M. Loomey, R, M, Baker of Alliance, A. M. Miller, P. Michael, of Hemingford, F. W. Melick of Hemingford, and F. T. Morrison and C. F. Gruenig of Omaha.
   March 28,1906, Mr. Bald married at Hampton, Nebraska, Miss Ella Kemper, who was born there, the daughter of Henry and Serepta (Smith) Kemper, both natives of Illinois. Mrs. Bald was an only child, she graduated from the Hampton high school and then took a special musical course at Nebraska Wesleyan College. Three children have been born to the Balds: Maurine, Warren and Helen L., all at home.
   Mr. Bald owns a fine modem home in Alliance and also about five hundred acres of farm land which he gives general supervision and from which he says he gets a comfortable nest egg each year. In politics he is a Democrat, is a member of the Presbyterian church, while big fraternal affiliations are with the Elks and the Knights of Pythias.

    JOHN O'KEEFE, and WILLIAM L. O'KEEFE, the owners and managers of one of the progressive real estate firms of Box Butte county and the city of Alliance belong to a prominent and well known family that came here in pioneer days and, helped make history in the upper Platte valley.
   John O'Keefe was born in Fulton county, Illinois, April 28, 1867, the son of John and Sarah (Kelly) O'Keefe, the former a native of Ireland, who came to America and located in Illinois where his children were born. John was the second in a family of four children and spent his boyhood years on his father's farm, attending the public schools in the winter sessions and helping around the home place during his vacations, thus early becoming well acquainted with the business side of farm industries. He was an ambitious youth; desiring to establish himself independently he came to Nebraska where he could obtain government land in 1886, and took up a homestead five miles south of Hemingsford (sic). Mr. O'Keefe put up the usual "soddy" for a house as lumber was almost unknown on the plains at that early day. He drove into Box Butte county in true pioneer style, freighting his goods from Hay Springs, sixty miles away, settled in a veritable wilderness where habitations were few and far apart and civilization was yet in its most primitive form. On the trips to and from Hay Springs he was forced to ford the Niobrara river, much of an undertaking when the water was at all high as bridges had not yet been built over the stream and a bitter cold experience for man and beast in the winter time. Feul (sic) and posts for the absolutely necessary fences on the farm were hauled from Pine Ridge nearly thirty-five miles away. Water was the great problem of the first settlers and to obtain some on his place Mr. O'Keefe dug a well a hundred and ten feet deep for his own use and to water his stock. It was one of the first in his section and neighbors came as far as five miles with tank wagons to secure water for themselves and their animals. In the fall of 1887, Mr. O'Keefe was elected treasurer of the newly created county of Box Butte, served two years and was re-elected. During the four years he held office John O'Keefe, Jr., acted as his deputy and in the fall of 1889, was elected to succeed his father and in the summer of 1892 the father was appointed postmaster of Hemingsford (sic). under President Cleveland and held office four years. Upon the close of his term of office John O'Keefe, Jr., came to Alliance in the spring of 1894 to enter the post office as deputy postmaster, serving in that capacity three and a half years, then joined his brother Dan in opening up and developing a ranch. They met with success and from time to time added to their original holdings until they owned ten thousand acres of land, on which they ran about a thousand head of cattle and horses, cutting annually two hundred and fifty tons of hay. As the country was new, for many years they had open range but as settlement continued this was restricted and after about fifteen years of successful ranching the brothers disposed of all but some three thousand acres of

Prior page
General index
Next page

   © 1999, 2000, 2001 for NEGenWeb Project by Pam Rietsch, Ted & Carole Miller