Biographies from History of South Dakota
by Doane Robinson, Vol. II, 1904
John Scherer was born January 23, 1836, in Hesse Darmstadt, Germany, of which province his parents, John and Catherine (Yager) Scherer, were also natives. His father devoted the greater part of his life to various kinds of public work and was a man of industry and thrift. These parents died a number of years ago in the land of their birth, leaving six children whose names are as follows: John, of this review, Lizzie, Andrew, Mary, Kate and Carl, of whom the subject and Andrew came to America, the others remaining in their native country.
John Scherer attended school in Hesse Darmstadt during his youth and remained at home until eighteen years of age. He then decided to go to America, being fully convinced that he could do better in the great country beyond the sea than in his own land, where privileges were few and the opportunities for rising in the world limited. In due time he landed at New York and from that city proceeded as far west as Henry county, Iowa, where he spent the ensuing year and a half as a farm laborer, after which he went to the southern part of the state, where he remained one year. At the expiration of that time he went to Scott county, Iowa, and engaged in farming for himself until 1866, when he came to Dakota territory, locating east of Yankton, where he entered a quarter section of land which he improved and on which he lived during the three years following. In 1869 he disposed of his real estate in Yankton county and moved to the county of Bon Homme, where he has since resided, purchasing the meanwhile a valuable tract of land in Tabor township, which under his efficient labors has been brought to a high state of cultivation and otherwise improved, teeing 'one of the most productive farms and desirable homes of the locality in which it is situated.
Mr. Scherer is a progressive farmer and his influence has done much to promote the agricultural interests in the township of his residence. He has also achieved considerable reputation in the matter of live stock, which he now makes his chief business, paying special attention to horses, cattle and hogs, in the breeding and raising of which his success has been encouraging and his income liberal. He came west in an early day, has kept pace with the growth and development of the country, and contributed of his labor and influence to introduce civilization into Bon Homme county and to bring about results that are now obtained in this highly favored part of South Dakota. In politics he votes for the best qualified candidates regardless of the party to which they belong, and while manifesting a lively interest in public affairs and always standing for good government, he has never departed from his business to seek office or aspire to leadership.
Mr. Scherer, in 1862, married Miss Agnes Congleton, of Butler County, Pennsylvania, who bore him nine children, namely: William, a lumberman living in Dunwoody County, Virginia; Adelia, wife of George Biittler, a farmer of Bon Homme County; Fred (Carl Frederick), who is engaged in farming and stock raising in Charles Mix County, this state; Mary, now Mrs. Wade Glynn, of Springfield, South Dakota; John a resident of Petersburg, Virginia, and a cabinetmaker by trade; George, a farmer and stock dealer, living in Charles Mix County, South Dakota; Maggie, a member of the home circle; Leo, who died in the year 1902, and Charles, who assists his father in running the farm. The mother of these children departed this life in 1885, since which time Mr. Scherer has kept up his home with the aid of his children, the meanwhile providing well for those leaving the parental roof to start in life for themselves.
JAMES H. BASKIN, one of the best-known and most popular residents of Bon Homme county, and late mayor of the town of Scotland, was a native of the sunny south, having been born in the city of Atlanta, Georgia, on the 17th of February 1845, a son of John and Elizabeth (Benton) Baskin, of whose seven children four are living at the present time, namely: Anna, who is the wife of a Mr. Harris, of Atlanta; Walter, who likewise continues to reside in that city, as does also Zachariah; and James H., the immediate subject of this sketch. The father of the subject came of stanch English lineage and was himself a native of the state of South Carolina, where he was reared to maturity. He finally removed thence to Atlanta, Georgia, where he established himself in the blacksmithing and wagon-making business, in which he continued to be actively engaged for many years, and in that city he continued to reside until his death, at the age of seventy years, while his devoted wife passed away when the subject was quite young.
James H. Baskin was reared and educated in his native city and was a lad of sixteen years at the time of the outbreak of the Civil war. His sympathies were naturally with the section in which he had been reared, and he was among many others of the chivalrous and valiant young men of the south who tendered their services to the Confederate government. At the age of sixteen years he enlisted, in September, 1861, as a member of a Georgia regiment, heavy artillery, with which he continued in active service until] November, 1864, when he was captured at Fisher Hill, Virginia, and taken to the Union prison at Point Lookout, Maryland, being released on parole two weeks later. He had participated in many of the important engagements of the war and had proved a valiant defender of the "lost cause." After his release from captivity he passed a short interval in New York city and then drifted westward to St. Louis, Missouri, while in 1868 he came as a pioneer to the territory of Dakota, which was then on the frontier of civilization. For a year after his arrival he was in the employ of the firm of Duett & Bogue, traders, at Fort Thompson. About this time the Indians were removed to the Santee agency, and our subject was sent to that point in the employ of the government, and there he continued in service until 1875, when he took up his residence in Springfield, Bon Homme county, where he established himself in the hotel business, in which he there continued for the long period of eleven years, gaining a wide acquaintanceship throughout what is now the state of South Dakota and becoming one of the most popular pioneer hotel men of the state. In 1886 he came to Scotland, where he conducted the Baskin hotel, which is a popular resort of the traveling public; no pains being spared to provide the best possible accommodations and cater to the comfort and pleasure of the guests of the house. That the subject was a man of versatility is shown when we state that for seven years after coming to Scotland he was editor and publisher of the Scotland Journal, which he made an able exponent of local interests and a factor of importance in public and political affairs in this section. In 1890 he was elected mayor of the town, and served continuously as chief executive of the municipal government from that time to the date of his death, save for an interim of two years. He maintained a progressive policy and yet conserved economy in all departments, while his long retention in office was the best voucher of the popular appreciation accorded his well-directed efforts in the connection. In 1899 Mr. Baskin was elected a member of the lower house of the state legislature, and during his service of one term he proved an able and discriminating legislator, taking an active part in the work of the body, while he had the distinction of being chairman of the important committee on ways and means and also held membership on the committee on railroads and that on military affairs. He was originally an adherent of the Democratic party, but was a man who ever showed the courage of his convictions, and in harmony therewith he transferred his allegiance to the Republican party in 1896, during the campaign of which year he gave effective service in the support of the candidacy of President McKinley, and he afterward continued a stalwart advocate of the cause of the "grand old party." He and his wife were communicants of the Protestant Episcopal church, and fraternally he was identified with Scotland Lodge, No. 52, Free and Accepted Masons, and Scotland Chapter, No. 31, Royal Arch Masons.
On the 1st of December, 1888, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Baskin to Miss Mary Kula of this county, and they became the parents of two sons, James E. and Frederick R., both of whom remain at the parental home. Mr. Baskin departed this life on February 29, 1904.
REV. HEINRICH P. UNRUH, one of the popular and successful farmers of Bon Homme county, was born in Volhynia, Ostrog, Russia, on the 25th of February, 1865, and is a son of Rev. Peter and Mary (Siebert) Unruh, both of whom were likewise born in Russia, being of German lineage and speaking the German language. Their ancestors removed from Germany into southern Russia a number of generations ago. The father of the subject was engaged in agriculture and in service as a minister of the gospel in his native land until 1874, when he emigrated thence to America, and with his family located in Hutchinson county, South Dakota, being one of the first settlers in that section, where he took up two hundred and twenty acres of government land, the same being entirely unreclaimed and located in the vicinity of Silver Lake. His equipment upon coming to the county consisted of a few household effects, a wagon, a yoke of oxen and two cows. He began his career here in true pioneer style, the original family home being a rude sod house, but in due time he brought his land under profitable cultivation and made the best of improvements on the property, becoming one of the honored and successful farmers of the county, where he and his wife still maintain their residence, residing on the old homestead which has been their place of abode for the past thirty years. He is a Republican in politics and both he and his wife are members of the Mennonite church. To them were born ten children, of whom all are living, the subject having been the second in order of birth, while five of the number were born after the removal of the family to America.
Rev. Heinrich P. Unruh was a lad of nine years at the time of his parents' immigration to the United States, and had received his early educational training in the excellent German schools of his native land, while he supplemented this by attending school as opportunity afforded after coming to South Dakota, though the advantages were of course meager in the early days, while his services were much in requisition in connection with the work of the home farm. He continued to assist his father in the management of the homestead until he had attained the age of twenty-one years, when he initiated his independent career, having received from his father a gift of eighty acres of wild land in Turner county, this state, together with a yoke of oxen. He remained on this place two years, breaking the greater portion of the land, and then, in 1888, disposed of the property and purchased his present homestead of one hundred and sixty acres, in Bon Homme county. The place was partially improved, and had a sod house, in place he continued to reside until 1901, when he erected his present commodious frame residence. Mr. Unruh cultivates three hundred and twenty acres of land, of which one hundred and sixty are rented. Be receives a nice income from butter, eggs, produce and stock, and nets from seven hundred to eight hundred dollars yearly from hogs. The farm has a good orchard, is well fenced and is one of the attractive and valuable places of the county, while the subject is known as an energetic and indefatigable worker and as man worthy of unqualified confidence and esteem, which are freely accorded him. In politics he supports the Republican party, and both he and his wife are members of the Mennonite church.
On the 18th of February, 1886, Mr. Unruh was united in marriage to Miss Lena Schultz, who was born in Russia and who is a daughter of Henry Schultz, who was one of the pioneers and successful farmers of Bon Homme county, where his death occurred in 1880. His wife is still living and resides in the home of our subject. Mr. and Mrs. Unruh have eight children, whose names are here entered, with respective dates of birth: Benjamin, February 3, 1887; Peter, October 5, 1888; Susan, May 27, 1890; Jonathan, January 30, 1892, died September 9, same year; Anthony, November 12, 1893; Elizabeth, January 19, 1896; Anna, September 17, 1897; and William, September 1, 1899.
In reference to his services as a minister of the gospel it may be said that Mr. Unruh was elected a minister by the members of the Mennonite church at Loretta, Bon Homme county, January 4, 1889, and was confirmed and ordained on the 15th of February following by Bishop Benjamin P. Schmidt. He has since then served in the Christian ministry without salary. He works faithfully for the sake of Christianity and is greatly interested in the education of young children, having himself been a teacher of the German language for some time at Loretta.
Adrian L. Fish, the able and popular clerk of the courts of Bon Homme county, was born in Adel, Dallas county, Iowa, on the 15th of November, 1867, being a son of Abner K. and Margaret E. (Wallace) Fish, of whose five children he is the eldest of the four surviving, the others being as follows: Oliver, who is a resident of Good Springs, Nevada ; Lillian, who is the wife of James Farran, of Sioux City, Iowa; and Alice, who remains at the parental home.
Adrian L. Fish, whose name initiates this sketch, secured his preliminary education in the public schools of his native county, and he then entered the normal school at LeMars, Iowa, where he was graduated as a member of the class of 1889. He later attended the university at Vermillion, South Dakota, for two years, and in 1890 he took a business course in the University of the Northwest at Sioux City. Iowa. As early as his nineteenth year he inaugurated his efforts as a teacher in the public schools, and through his efforts in the pedagogic profession he earned the funds which enabled him to complete his collegiate work. In 1891 he entered the law office of Carter & Brown, of Sioux City, and under their preceptorship continued the technical reading of the law about two years, becoming well grounded in the principles of the science of jurisprudence.
In the spring of 1892 he came to Tyndall, South Dakota, and here was associated for one year with P. W. Smith, in the abstract business. At the expiration of this time he was appointed deputy register of deeds for Bon Homme county, in which capacity herendered most efficient service for the ensuing four years, and in 1897 he was elected to his present responsible and exacting office of clerk of the courts, in which he has since served consecutively, which fact indicates the appreciative estimate placed upon his services. He was elected for a fourth term in the autumn election of 1902. In politics he accords an unfaltering allegiance to the Republican party, taking an active interest in the cause and contributing to the furtherance of the same in a local way. His religious faith is that of the Congregational church, of which his wife likewise is a devoted member, and fraternally he is identified with Tyndall Lodge, No. 95, Independent Order of Odd Fellows ; Istaska Tribe, No. 32, Improved Order of Red Men : and Tyndall Camp, No. 2463, Modern Woodmen of America.
On the 31st of October, 1892, Mr. Fish was united in marriage to Miss Alice Benbow, of Sheldon, Iowa, and of their four children two are living, Warren D. and Francis F.
HUGH HARTLY was born in Stonington, Connecticut, January 8, 1860. He was ten years old when his parents left Connecticut for the west and since the year 1870 his life has been very closely interwoven with the history of Bon Homme county, South Dakota. He was not permitted to enjoy many educational advantages; however, he made the most of his opportunities and obtained a valuable practical knowledge. He assisted his father in developing and cultivating the homestead and on reaching the age of manhood entered one hundred and sixty acres of land in Springfield township, on which he lived for a period of five years, during which time he addressed himself manfully to its improvement. At the expiration of the time noted Mr. Hartly moved to the place where he has since lived, a beautiful, productive, and admirably situated farm, devoted to stock raising and farming. Mr. Hartly is familiar with the nature of soils and their adaptability to the different products of this part of the state and he seldom fails to realize abundant returns from the wheat, oats, corn, and hay crops which are every year harvested from his place. In connection with general farming, he devotes a great deal of attention to cattle, hogs, and horses, and from the sale of his animals he derives no small share of the income which comes to him as a reward for his well-directed labors. Mr. Hartly in politics supports the Democratic party, while he is earnest and devout in his allegiance to the Catholic church.
STEPHEN OLIVER, of Bon Homme county, South Dakota, was born in Rock county, Wisconsin, September 13, 1860. His early life was spent in the state of his birth and during his childhood and youth he attended the public school and acquired a good practical education. When a young man he learned the machinist's trade and worked at the same until 1883, when he came to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, with the object in view of devoting his attention to farming and stock raising. He first purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land, but later exchanged it for a like number of acres, on which he has since lived and prospered, and which, under his effective labors and judicious management has become one of the best improved and most productive farms of its size in the county. He has made a number of substantial improvements on his place, the buildings, well-tilled fields, and the large number of fine domestic animals bearing evidence to its prosperous condition. Mr. Oliver votes the Republican ticket, He was married to Miss Amy Crandall, of Bon Homme county, and to them have been born six children.
THOMAS COLE, of Bon Homme county, was born in county Roscommon, Ireland, December 22, 1836. He spent his early life near the place of his birth, but enjoyed few advantages in the way of educational training. When twelve years of age he followed his mother to America, and joined her at Bloomfield, New Jersey, where she located immediately after her arrival in this country. Later Mr. Cole went to Portage City, Wisconsin, but subsequently changed his abode to Pike county, Missouri, where he tilled the soil until his removal to South Dakota. On coming to the territory, he took up a quarter section of land in what is now Cleveland township, Bon Homme county, being one of the first pioneers in that part of the country. After building a small log cabin Mr. Cole set to work improving his land and in due time reduced the greater part of it to cultivation and became quite a thrifty and prosperous farmer. The original log dwelling answered the purposes for which intended until replaced by the present substantial and commodious structure, and from time to time other buildings were erected, additional improvements were made and continued success attended the energetic and well-directed labors of the proprietor.
In 1869 was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Cole and Miss Ann Carroll, the latter, like her husband, being a native of county Roscommon, Ireland, and to them nine children have been born.
Rev. Edward Fierek
REV. EDWARD M. FIEREK, the able and popular priest in charge of St Leo's Catholic church in Tyndall, Bon Homme county, is a native of the state of Wisconsin, having been born in Stevens Point, Portage county, on the 13th of October, 1874, a son of August and Johanna (Kropidlowski) Fierek, both of whom were born in Poland, where they were reared and educated, having come thence to the United States about 1873, locating in Wisconsin, where their marriage was solemnized. August Fierek rendered valiant service in the Franco-Prussian war, and he came to America shortly after the expiration of his term of service. After his arrival in Wisconsin he was for a short time engaged in farm work, after which he became identified with railroad work, in which he continued, in various capacities, until about 1898, when he met with an accident which necessitated the amputation of his right leg, and since that time he has lived retired, maintaining his home in Ironwood, Michigan, and still having the companionship of his devoted wife, both being communicants and zealous workers in the Catholic church.
Rev. Father Fierek passed his boyhood days in his native state of Wisconsin, and his early education was secured in the parochial schools of Stevens Point, after which he took a classical and philosophical course of study in St Joseph's College, at Dubuque, Iowa. Thereafter his studies were interrupted for an interval of about three years, at the expiration of which he was enabled to carry forward his long cherished plans of preparing himself for the priesthood, entering St Mary's Seminary, in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he completed his theological course, being graduated in June, 1901, and in September of the same year he was ordained to the priesthood, at Sioux Falls, South Dakota, under the episcopal offices of Bishop O'Gorman. Soon after his ordination Father Fierek was assigned to the parish of Sts. Peter and Paul church, in Pierre, as assistant to Father John J. O'Neill, and there he remained until June 15, 1902, when he was sent to his present charge, where he has gained the affectionate regard of his parishioners and the high esteem of all who know him. Father Fierek is a young man of genial and gracious personality, earnest in the work to which he has consecrated his life, kindly and tolerant in his judgment, and one well adapted to the noble calling to which he has given himself in the fullness of faith and self-abnegating humility.
CHARLES H. STILWILL, the able and popular incumbent of the office of postmaster at Tyndall, is a native of the old Empire state of the Union, having been born in Genesee county, New York, on the 7th of February, 1843, a son of Hiram R. and Melinda (Drake) Stilwill, of whose four children three survive, namely: Kesiah, who is the wife of John P. Dickey, of Cherokee, Iowa; Charles H., subject of this sketch; and John G., who is superintendent of the Emma mines, at Alta City, Utah. Hiram R. Stilwill was likewise torn in Genesee county, of stanch Holland ancestry, and in his native county he received a good English education, having been for a number of years a successful teacher in the district schools, while later he gave his attention to the nursery business. He died of typhus fever, in 1853, at the age of thirty-seven years, our subject having been a lad of ten years at the time. His widow subsequently contracted a second marriage, becoming the wife of Joseph B. Craft, and of this union was born one child, George H., who is now a resident of Oakfield, New York. The mother was summoned into eternal rest in 1871. Her father, John Drake, was an active participant in the war of 1812. William Stilwill, the paternal grandfather of our subject, was born in Cattaraugus county, New York, whither his parents immigrated from Holland, and there he took up a tract of land in what was commonly known as the Holland Purchase.
Charles H. Stillwill, whose name introduces this sketch, was reared in his native county and received his early educational training in the common schools. In 1865 he severed the home ties and set forth to seek his fortunes in the west. He came to Iowa, arriving in Dubuque the day following the assassination of President Lincoln, and he thence carried the news of this lamentable tragedy into Delaware county, that state, where he devoted his attention to farm work for the ensuing three years. He was married in 1868 and shortly afterward engaged in the manufacture of fanning mills, at Hopkinton, Iowa, and one year later he removed to a farm which he had previously purchased, in Delaware county, and there he continued to be engaged in agricultural pursuits until the spring of 1879, when he disposed of his farm and came to the territory of Dakota, passing the first summer in Yankton, and arriving in Bon Homme county, on the 7th of September, 1879. For about sixteen months thereafter he served as deputy register of deeds of the county, and in 1881 he was appointed clerk of the courts, which incumbency he retained for the long period of eleven years, giving most capable and satisfactory service. Within this time he also gave his attention to the real estate business becoming one of the leading representatives of this line of enterprise in this section. He associated himself with G. W. Roberts, of Yankton, and Thomas Thorson, of Canton, in the organization of the Corn Belt Real Estate Association, which has accomplished so great a work in furthering the settlement of the state and the development of its industrial resources. Mr. Stilwill has been called to other offices of public trust, having served as deputy sheriff and as deputy county treasurer, and in all positions he has held the implicit confidence of the people of the county. In 1897 he was appointed postmaster at Tyndall, and in 1902 he received a reappointment under President Roosevelt. He is still largely interested in real estate, owning valuable property in Tyndall and extensive tracts of farming land in the county, and he has done much to promote the general welfare and material progress of this favored section of our great commonwealth. In politics Mr. Stilwill gives an unequivocal allegiance to the Republican party, and fraternally he is affiliated with Bon Homme Lodge, No. 101, Free and Accepted Masons; Scotland Chapter, Royal Arch Masons; Springfield Lodge, Independent Order of Odd Fellows; and Tyndall Lodge, Knights of Pythias. He is a member of the Congregational church, as was also his devoted and cherished wife.
On the 11th of February, 1868, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Stilwill to Miss Marian Kirkwood, of Hopkinton, Iowa, who proved to him a true helpmeet until her death, which occurred on the 12th of March, 1903. She was held in affectionate regard by all who knew her, being a woman of gracious and noble character, and she is survived by her four children, namely: Agnes, who is the wife of James D. Elliott, United States district attorney, residing in Tyndall; Dr. Hiram R., who is a practicing physician, in Denver, Colorado; Charles M., who is a well known attorney, of Tyndall, being individually mentioned on another page of this work; and Hayes K., who is bookkeeper in the Security Bank of Tyndall.
JOSEPH ZITKA, cashier of the Security Bank at Tyndall, is a native of Bohemia, where he was born on the 21st of March, 1850, being a son of Joseph and Anna (Riha) Zitka, of whose three children he is the elder of the two surviving, the other being Frances, who is the wife of Charles Vaulk, of Bon Homme county, this state. The father of the subject was a farmer in his native land, where he continued to reside until 1867, when he immigrated with his family to the United States, locating in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where he remained about three years, after which he came as a pioneer to South Dakota, which was then still a portion of the great undivided territory of Dakota. He located in Bon Homme county, where he took up a homestead claim and again turned his attention to agricultural pursuits. He was a man of energy and excellent business judgment, and through his well-directed efforts he attained a definite success in connection with his industrial enterprise as a pioneer of this state, while he so lived as to command the respect of all who knew him. At the time of his death, which occurred in September, 1902, he was a resident of Bon Homme county, South Dakota, and his political faith was that of the Democratic party.
The subject of this sketch received his early educational discipline in his native land, being accorded the advantages of the excellent schools in the vicinity of his home, and being about seventeen years of age at the time of the family's emigration to the United States. After locating in South Dakota he continued to be associated with his father in his farming enterprises until 1883, a partnership relation having been maintained. He early became interested in matters of public concern and eventually became a prominent factor in the local councils of the Democratic party, of whose principles and policies he has ever been a stalwart advocate. In 1872 he was elected a member of the board of county commissioners of Bon Homme county and in the ensuing year he was still further honored by being chosen to represent his district in the legislature of the territory, while in 1876 he was again elected a member of the board of county commissioners. In 1883 Mr. Zitka was elected register of deeds of Bon Homme county, having become a resident of this county in 1870, and this office he held for three consecutive terms of two years each. In 1889 he was a member of the constitutional convention, at Sioux Falls, which formulated the present admirable constitution of the state. In 1898 he was elected treasurer of Bon Homme county, and thereupon became a resident of Tyndall, the county seat having been removed to this place from Bon Homme in 1885.
In 1889 was effected the organization of the Security Bank in Tyndall and Mr. Zitka was chosen cashier of the new institution, a position of which he has ever since remained incumbent, while his discriminating management of its affairs has shown him to be an able executive and through his efforts the institution has become one of the popular and solid ones of the state. He is the owner of about fifteen hundred acres of valuable farming land in Bon Homme county. He and his wife are communicants of the Catholic church and fraternally he is a member of Bon Homme Lodge, No. 101, Free and Accepted Masons.
On the 8th of June, 1877, Mr. Zitka was united in marriage to Miss Mary Bohac, of Crete, Nebraska, and of this union have been born eight children, concerning whom we enter the following brief record: Hattie is the wife of Frank Chladek, of Hawarden, Iowa; Rose is the wife of John Herman, of Tabor, South Dakota; and Mary, Charles, Anna, Agnes, Frances, and George still remain at the parental home, which is a center of refined hospitality.
CHARLES L. BEEMAN is a native of Bradford county, Pennsylvania, where his birth took place on the 11th day of January, 1832, being the son of Joseph H. and Betsy (Buck) Beeman, both parents born and reared in the Keystone state. The Beemans and Bucks were among the early settlers of Bradford county and both families appear to have been widely known and highly esteemed. Joseph H. Beeman, the subject's father, was a farmer and in connection with agriculture worked for a number of years at the carpenter's trade, having been an efficient mechanic as well as an enterprising and prosperous tiller of the soil. Of his eight children, three survive, namely: Charles L., who is the second in order of birth; Julia, living in Iowa; and Amos, who is still a resident of Bradford county. The following are the names of those deceased: Denton, who was the oldest of the family; Minor, Eliza, and Henry, the third, fourth, and fifth respectively. Henry was a soldier in the Union army during the late Civil war, rendered valuable service for his country and died a miserable death in the prison pen at Andersonville.
Charles L. Beeman was reared on the home farm in Pennsylvania, and owing to unfavorable circumstances was enabled to acquire only a limited education. Being the oldest of the living children, much of the labor of the farm naturally fell to him, but with true filial regard he cheerfully assumed the responsibility and discharged his duties faithfully and well, remaining with his parents and looking to their interests and the interests of the rest of the family until long after the age when the majority of young men are accustomed to begin life for themselves. In 1864 he left home and went to Jones county, Iowa, where he purchased forty acres of land and engaged in farming. He succeeded fairly well and continued to live where he originally located until 1883, when he sold his place and came to Bon Homme county, Dakota, purchasing a quarter section of land in the township of Bon Homme, which he soon reduced to cultivation and otherwise improved. Accustomed to hard work from his youth and possessing a determined will, Mr. Beeman made substantial progress as a farmer and in the course of a few years was accounted one of the most successful men of the community in which he resided, In the year 1900 he bought his present place and since that time has brought it to a high state of tillage, besides making a number of substantial improvements, including a neat and comfortable dwelling, good barns and other outbuildings, and he now owns one of the most beautiful and desirable homes in the township. Mr. Beeman has devoted his life to agriculture and is familiar with every phase of his chosen calling. He employs modern methods in the tilling of the soil, raises abundant crops of grain, vegetables and other products peculiar to South Dakota, besides paying considerable attention to live stock, in the breeding and raising of which he has met with encouraging success. Mr. Beeman is a man of domestic tastes, a great lover of his home and has never had any desire for public office, although a staunch Republican in politics and an active supporter of his party. In religion he is a Baptist, having united with the church a number of years ago, and his life ever since been in harmony with the principles and teachings of the faith which he professes.
Mr. Beeman was married in his native county and state, in 1852, to Miss Caroline E. Titus, who was born and reared in the same neighborhood in which he spent his youth and early manhood. They have three children, the oldest being Rosie, who is now the wife of Alexander Kane, a farmer of Knox county, Nebraska; Estella, the second daughter, married Homer Beeman, a farmer and stock raiser of Bon Homme township; and the youngest of the family, a son by the name of Frank, lives at home and helps his father run the farm. Mrs. Beeman is also a Baptist in her religious belief and a consistent and highly esteemed member of the local church.
John Schmierer, Jr.
JOHN SCHMIERER, JR., cashier of the German American Bank at Parkston, Hutchinson county, and recognized as one of the able young business men of this section of the state, was born in the southeastern part of Russia, being a son of John and Elizabeth (Becker) Schmierer, emigrating with his family to the United States, locating in Scotland, Bon Homme county, South Dakota, the state being at that time still a portion of the great undivided territory of Dakota. He established himself in the hardware and farm implement business and there continued to be successfully engaged in for several years. Subsequently he purchased the Parkston State Bank and reorganized the same, of which he has ever since been president, while the subject of this sketch was made at the time of reorganization, the bank being one of the solid and popular monetary institutions this section, while it is incorporated under title of the German American Bank.
The subject of this sketch was still an infant at the time of his parents emigration to America, and he has thus passed practically his entire life in South Dakota. After completing the curriculum of the public schools he continued his studies in the State University, and supplemented this by a course in the Bryant & Stratton Business College at Chicago, Illinois. After completing his work in that institution he was employed for one year by a business firm of that city, and was then compelled to resign his position by reason of a severe attack of illness. He then returned to his home in South Dakota, and for a while was employed in the Bank of Scotland, after which he was made cashier of the German American Bank of Parkston, of which position he has ever since been incumbent.
JAMES DONNELLY, one of the leading fanners and stock raisers of Bon Homme county, was born April 19, 1851, at Black Earth, Dane county, Wisconsin, and is the oldest of a family of six children, whose parents, Frank and Nancy (Reegan) Donnelly, were natives of Ireland. Shortly after their marriage Frank Donnelly and wife came to America and settled in Dane county, Wisconsin, where they continued to reside from 1850 to 1861. In the latter year, with several other families, they started west and in due time reached Niobrara, Nebraska, where they made settlement and purchased government land, being among the first pioneers in that part of the state. Mr. Donnelly improved his land and lived on the same for a period of five years, at the end of which time he sold out and moved to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, locating in Running Water township, where he and his wife spent remainder of their days, both dying in the year 1902, she in April and he in the month of October. By occupation Mr. Donnelly was a blacksmith, which trade he followed exclusively in native country, but after coming to the States the greater part of his attention was devoted to agricultural pursuits. As stated above, the subject of this review is the oldest of children born to Frank and Nancy Donnelly, others being: Mary, widow of Michael O'Shea; Hannah, wife of William Rogers, of Bon Homme county; Margaret, who married James McKenna and lives in Yankton county; Frank E. lives in Nebraska; and John, whose home is in Alberta, Canada.
James Donnelly was ten years old when he accompanied his parents on their removal to Nebraska and he retains vivid recollections of the long and somewhat wearisome journey by ox team to their new home in the west. He came with the family to South Dakota and at the age of twenty-two left the parental roof and entered one hundred and sixty acres in section 15, Running Water township, in addition to which he also took up the same amount of land in section 14, both of which tracts he at once proceeded to improve. After residing on his original purchase until 1885, he bought the quarter section where he now lives, but since then he has added to its area until the farm now includes four hundred and eighty acres of fine land, admirablv situated in one of the richest agricultural districts of Bon Homme county.
Mr. Donnelly has brought his place to a high state of tillage, besides making a number of valuable improvements thereon, his elegant and commodious modern dwelling, erected in 1899, being one of the finest and most attractive country residences in the township of Running Water. While enjoying marked prestige as an enterprising agriculturist, he makes stock raising his principal business and since the year 1880 his attention has been largely devoted to this important industry. He breeds and raises a fine grade of Durham cattle, pays considerable attention to hogs and for some years past has made a specially of Percheron and coach horses, of which he keeps a large number and for which there is always a lively demand at good prices.
Mr. Donnelly is a man of progressive ideas and tendencies and to him as much as to any other individual is due the advancement of Running Water township along material lines and the prosperity of its people. In politics he has been a stanch supporter of the Democratic party ever since old enough to cast a ballot, but his inclination has never led him to seek office or aspire to leadership. Religiously he was born and reared in the Catholic church and still adheres loyally to that faith, belonging with his family to the congregation at Running Water.
In June, 1873, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Donnelly and Miss Kate Milligan, the latter a native of County Roscommon, Ireland, and the daughter of James and Mary Milligan. Mrs. Donnelly came to this country in 1870, her parents remaining in Ireland the remainder of their lives, the mother dying in 1866, the father in the year 1873. Mr. and Mrs. Donnelly are the parents of nine children: Frank, formerly a teacher in the public schools, but now his father's assistant on the farm; James E., also at home; Winnie, wife of Lawrence Wilson, of Running Water; Annie, who taught for five years in the county schools, but at this time runs a dressmaking establishment in the city of Yankton; Mary, Maggie, Katie, Zoie, and Laura, the last five, with an adopted daughter by the name of Lillie Moore, a popular teacher of six years experience, but now married to James Gayner of Springfield, Bon Homme county, South Dakota, being members of the home circle.
WELLINGTON J. ANDREWS, one of the well-known and honored citizens of Sioux Falls, is a native of the dominion of Canada, having been born near the city of Ottawa, on the 14th of April, 1865, and being a son of William H. and Eliza Ann (Johnson) Andrews, who were likewise born in Canada, where they continued to maintain their home until 1874, when they came as pioneers to what is now the state of South Dakota, locating near Scotland, Bon Homme county, where the father took up government land and developed a good farm, becoming one of the representative citizens of that section of the state.
The subject of this review received his rudimentary education in the common schools of his native county, and was nine years of age at the time of his parents removal to South Dakota. Here he was reared to manhood under the sturdy discipline of the pioneer farm, the while continuing to attend the public schools until 1885, when he entered the academy at Scotland, where he was graduated as a member of the class of 1886. Thereafter he continued to assist in the work and management of the home farm until 1886, when, at the age of twenty-one years, he went to Parkston, Hutchinson county, where he was engaged in the agricultural implement business and dealing in live stock until 1893, when he returned to Scotland, where he opened a general merchandise store, building up a successful business and there continuing operations in the line until 1898, when he sold out and came to Sioux Falls, where he established himself in the grocery business, in which he has ever since continued, catering to a large and representative trade and having a finely equipped store. His establishment is modern in all its appointments, and the stock carried is exceptionally comprehensive and select, while he is recognized as an energetic and progressive business man and as one well worthy of the uniform confidence and esteem in which he is held. In politics Mr. Andrews has ever given an uncompromising allegiance to the Democratic party, has taken an active part in the promotion of its cause, having been a delegate to various state and county conventions, and having been called to serve in a number of minor offices, though he has never sought personal preferment in the line. Fraternally he is identified with Unity Lodge, No. 130, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons; Scotland Chapter, No. 31, Royal Arch Masons; Parkston Lodge, No. 99, Independent Order of Odd Fellows; and Sioux Falls Lodge, No. 262, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
On the 8th of February, 1899, Mr. Andrews was united in marriage to Miss Persis U. Tyler, who was born in Des Moines, Iowa, being a daughter of L. S. Tyler, who has been a resident of Sioux Falls since 1892. Mr. and Mrs. Andrews have one daughter, Edith Alice.
SEYMOUR A. GUPTILL, one of the largest land owners and successful farmers of Bon Homme county, is the son of John B. and Emily (Warren) Guptill, and was born in Winnebago county, Illinois, on the 7th day of January, 1859. His father, a native of Maine, came west in 1845 and settled in Illinois, where he purchased a farm on which he made his home until 1886, when he disposed of his interests in that state and moved his family to Canton, South Dakota. Buying land near the latter place, he improved a and continued to cultivate the same as long as he lived. He was a good man and an influential citizen, took an active interest in public affairs, and at different times was honored with official positions, in all of which he discharged his duties ably and acceptably. Mrs. Guptill, who was born in New York, survives her husband and at the present time lives in the state of Illinois. The following are the names of the children born to this couple: Charles, of Bon Homme county; Mrs. Lona Goldy, who lives in Illinois; Seymour A., of this review; and Lillie, who departed this life at the age of eleven years.
Seymour A. Guptill received a limited education in the public schools and remained with his parents until his twenty-second year, the meanwhile assisting with the labors of the farm. In 1882 he came to South Dakota and settled in Lincoln county, where he became one of the leading farmers. While there he accumulated considerable property, both real estate and personal, but in 1901 he sold out and came to Bon Homme county, where he invested his means in land, purchasing a fine farm of five hundred and twenty acres, which he still owns and which under his energetic labors and efficient management has become one of the finest and most productive farms of the township in which it is situated. Mr. Guptill has added greatly to his realty from time to time until he now owns eleven hundred and sixty acres, all valuable and the greater part under cultivation and well improved. He farms the home place and rents the rest of his land, and as an agriculturist and stock raiser he ranks with the leading men of his part of the state, who are thus engaged. A Populist in sentiment and a zealous supporter of the party of that name, Mr. Guptill has kept aloof from partisan politics and persistently refused to accept office or any kind of public position. He has no ambition further than to be a successful farmer and business man and to dignify his standing as a citizen whose interests are not wholly circumscribed within narrow, selfish limits, but tend largely to promote the welfare of his fellow men.
In 1880 Mr. Guptill contracted a marriage with Miss Nettie Hoyt, of Rock county, Wisconsin, and he is now the head of an interesting family of four children, viz: Clyde, Walter S., Lorna, and Sidney, the youngest, a son by the name of Rolland, being deceased.
MILTON D. GARDNER, one of the leading farmers and stock raisers of Bon Homme county, is a native of Oneida county, New York, and dates his birth from April 30, 1837. His grandfather, Benjamin Gardner, moved to that county in an early day from Rhode Island and was one of the leading citizens of the community in which he spent the remainder of his life. He was a farmer by occupation, took an active part in the affairs of Oneida county and died there many years ago, leaving a family of six children, viz: Daniel, Frederick, David, Mary, Harriet, and Narcissus, all deceased except Harriet, who still lives in the state of New York.
Frederick Gardner, the second son, was born September 23, 1811, married Sarah Wiggin, whose birth occurred in the year 1816, and departed this life in Oneida county, January 16, 1870, his wife dying seven years after that date. Mr. Gardner followed tilling the soil for a livelihood and was a man of sterling worth. He was a Democrat in politics, a Baptist in his religious belief, and as a neighbor and citizen bore an excellent reputation. Frederick and Sarah Gardner reared a family of seven children, whose names are as follows: Joanna, born January 10, 1835, married Alexander Bowers, and died in Dubuque, Iowa, October 10, 1900; Milton D., the subject of this review, is the second in order of birth; Anna Eliza was born June 28, 1839; Harriet, wife of William Bowers, was born February 24, 1842, and died in 1898; George W., whose birth occurred on the 17th of September, 1846, died in childhood; Henry J., born March 23, 1849, is living a retired life with the subject; A. W., was born March 22, 1855, and makes his home in Maquoketa, Iowa.
Milton D. Gardner was educated in the public schools of his native county, grew to manhood on the farm and remained with his parents until twenty-seven years of age. In 1864 he severed home ties and went to Minneapolis, Minnesota, but after spending a short time at that place changed his abode to Waseca, in the same state, where he clerked for two years in a mercantile house. Resigning his position at the end of that time he became bookkeeper for a firm in Dubuque, Iowa, where he remained until 1873, the meanwhile becoming familiar with business and well qualified to enter upon the duties of the active career which awaited him in the west. In the above year Mr. Gardner came to South Dakota and with his brother engaged in the implement business at Yankton, where the two conducted a large establishment until 1883, building up a lucrative trade during that time and becoming widely and favorably known in commercial circles. Disposing of his interest at the time noted, the subject came to Bon Homme county and purchased his present farm of one hundred and sixty acres in the township of Bon Homme, which he at once began to improve and which he has since converted into one of the best farms as well as one of the most beautiful and attractive country homes in this part of the state. Since moving to this place he has devoted his attention to agriculture and stock raising and that his success has been most flattering is attested by his steady advancement in material affairs, being at this time the owner of eleven hundred acres of valuable land in Bon Homme county, four hundred of which are in cultivation and otherwise highly improved. He devotes especial attention to corn, millet, alfalfa, and hay, which he raises in abundance and feeds to his live stock. Mr. Gardner has achieved enviable repute as a raiser of fine blooded cattle and has on his farm at this time thirty-five registered shorthorns, also a large herd of other superior breeds, besides owning two hundred Poland-China hogs, and a number of fine horses, for both draft and road purposes. He exhibits his live stock and the products of his farms have taken a number of premiums awarded by the state fairs, all of which he attends and in the deliberations of which he takes an active interest and prominent part. In addition to his general agricultural and large live-stock interests, Mr. Gardner has a wide reputation as a grower of fine varieties of corn. So great has been the demand for this product of his farm that in the year 1903 he shipped more than a thousand bushels to different parts of the state and yet was unable to fill all orders that came to him. He has riven close and critical study to corn culture and his efforts have resulted in the improvement of standard varieties and the development of new and highly productive kinds, for all of which he receives fancy prices.
Fraternally, Mr. Gardner is a Mason, belonging to the blue lodge at Tyndall and the chapter at Scotland and he is also identified with the Pythian order, holding membership with the lodge which meets at Springfield. While not a politician in the strict sense of the word, he keeps well informed on the leading public questions of the day, and gives his support to the Democratic party, though in local affairs frequently voting for the best qualified candidate, regardless of political ties.
Mr. Gardner, on May 1, 1861, was united in marriage with Miss Ophelia Brewer, of Oneida county, New York, the union resulting in the birth of three children, the oldest of whom, Asa, was born on May 8, 1866. This son is now a prosperous stock dealer and lives at New England, North Dakota, where he has a family of five children, his wife having formerly been Miss Emma Harrison, of Bon Homme county; Isabella S., the second of the subject's children, was born March 12, 1868, and married Herbert Silverwood, a farmer of Bon Homme county, this state; the youngest of the family, a son by the name of Clarence E., was born on May 24, 1879, and is his father's able assistant on the farm.
IRA J. SMITH, of Springfield, Bon Homme county, is a native of Steuben county, New York, where his birth occurred on April 25, 1846, and is an honorable representative of one of the oldest and best known families of that part of the Empire state. His father, Solomon C. Smith, settled in the above county as early as 1830, cleared and improved a good farm and afterward moved onto a farm in Tioga county, Pennsylvania, and lived on the same until his death, at the age of seventy-nine years. He was of German descent and when a young man married Miss Lucretia Hurd, who departed this life when fifty-seven years old, after bearing him nine children, whose names are as follows: Joshua C., of Steuben county, New York; Rebecca, lives in Boston, Massachusetts; Freelove, of Fredonia, New York; Daniel, who lives in Portland, Oregon; Betsey, deceased; Ira J., whose name introduces this sketch; Mary J., deceased; Adaline, of Olean, New York; and Lovisa, whose home is in the state of Washington.
Ira J. Smith was reared to agricultural pursuits, received a common school education, and remained with his parents until twenty-three years old. Leaving home, he came west in 1870, arriving at Yankton, Dakota, on March 27th of that year. After spending a short time at that place the subject settled in Springfield, which had but recently been laid out, and, taking up a quarter section of land in the vicinity of the town, turned his attention to agriculture. While proving up on his land he worked in different places and after obtaining a patent from the government, entered an adjoining quarter section, for which he received a deed in due time.
Mr. Smith served four years as clerk in the United States land office at Springfield, during which time he lived in the town, but at the expiration of his term he returned to his farm and has continued its cultivation ever since. In addition to agriculture he is largely interested in live stock, being one of the leading cattle raisers in Springfield township, and he also devotes considerable attention to horses and hogs, making the fine breeds a specialty. Mr. Smith is one of the substantial business men of his community and as a farmer and stock raiser occupies a place in the front rank of those who follow these vocations. He is a self-made man and his success since coming west has been almost phenomenal. He reached South Dakota with sixty cents as the sum total of his capital and at this time he owns one of the most valuable farms in the county and a fine modern residence in Springfield, besides the wealth represented by his live stock and other personal property, all of which has been accumulated by his own industry, thrift, and efficient management. He moved to his beautiful and attractive home in the town in 1902, but still gives attention to his farming and live stock interests. Mr. Smith is a potent factor in the affairs of his township and county and one of the leading Republicans in his part of the country. He served three years on the board of county commissioners and could have almost any local office within the gift of the people, were it not for the fact that he has always been averse to accepting public position. In religion he is a Congregationalist: he assisted to organize the church at Springfield and has been one of its leading members and most liberal supporters ever since, being at this time a member of its board of trustees.
The domestic life of Mr. Smith dates from 1873, in which year he contracted a matrimonial alliance with Miss Hattie Bell, of Beloit, Wisconsin, who has borne him five children: Maude L.,; Ward E., died when two and a half years old; W. Berton, one of the promoters and owners of the Springfield Telephone Company; Mabel C.; and Rena A..
ORLANDO P. SWARTZ, one of the prominent and highly honored business men of Hutchinson county, is a native of the state of Illinois, having been born in Jo Daviess county, on the 21st of April, 1864, and being a son of Elias M. and Susan (Rudy) Swartz,of whose eight children we incorporate the following brief record: Martius H. is a resident of Gillette, Wyoming; Edith is the wife of James Brown, of Menno, South Dakota; Sarah is the wife of Schuyler C. Freeburg, of Sunnyside, California; George is engaged in the drug business in Parkston, South Dakota; Maud is the wife of Nelson C. Davis, of Crook county, Wyoming; Frederick is likewise a resident of that county, as is also Grover; and Orlando P. is the immediate subject of this sketch; Elias M. Swartz was born in Center county, Pennsylvania, being a representative of one of the sterling pioneer families of the old Keystone state and coming of stanch German lineage. As a young man he removed to Illinois, settling in Stephenson county, engaging in agricultural pursuits this being the vocation to which he had been reared. He later removed to Jo Daviess county, where he continued to reside until 1882, when he came to South Dakota, remaining for a short interval in the village of Scotland and then entering claim to land in Charles Mix county, where he engaged in the breeding and raising of cattle and horses, becoming one of the prominent and influential citizens of that section and commanding the most unqualified esteem of those who knew him and had cognizance of his sterling qualities of mind and heart. He died in 1901, having been a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, while his political allegiance was given to the Democratic party. His widow now makes her home with her children in Wyoming, she likewise being a member of the Methodist Episcopal church.
The subject of this sketch remained at the parental home until he had attained the age of twelve years, having in the meanwhile attended the public schools and assisted in the work of the farm, and he then went to the city of Freeport, Illinois, where he resided in the home of his uncle about five years, during which period he continued his educational work in the schools of that place. In 1879 he returned home, remaining one year, at the expiration of which he went to Iowa Falls, Iowa, where he was employed in the drug establishment of his uncle, John L. Swartz, for the ensuing three years. In July, 1883, he came to Scotland, Bon Homme county, South Dakota, where he secured a clerical position in the drug store of another uncle, William P. Swartz, and in 1884 he went to Springfield, Bon Homme county, where he was employed for two years in the drug store of Bonesteel & Turner, having in the meanwhile become an expert pharmacist. In September, 1886, in which year the town of Parkston was founded, he took up his residence here and engaged in the drug business on his own responsibility. In 1888 he entered into partnership with Frank Wiedman, who was here engaged in the hardware business at the time, and thereafter until 1898 the firm of Wiedman & Swartz here conducted a most prosperous business in the handling of hardware, implements, and drugs. In the year mentioned they disposed of the drug department of their enterprise and added a general line of merchandise, building up one of the most important and extensive trades of the sort in this section of the state. In 1901 they also purchased a general stove business at Milltown, and they now conduct the same as a branch of their Parkston establishment. In 1901 Mr. Swartz was appointed postmaster of Milltown, and he is still incumbent of this office, in which he is serving by proxy. In politics he is found arrayed as a stanch advocate of the principles of the Republican party, while fraternally he has attained the thirty-second degree in Scottish Rite Masonry, being identified with Oriental Consistory, No. 1, at Yankton. His ancient-craft membership is in Resurgam Lodge, No. 31, Free and Accepted Masons, at Mitchell, and he belongs to El Riad Temple, Mystic Shrine, at Sioux Falls, while he is also a member of Milltown Camp, No. 6153, Modern Woodmen of America.
On the 25th of September, 1885, Mr. Swartz was united in marriage to Miss Margie W. Robinson, of Iowa Falls, Iowa, she having been born in Concord county, New Hampshire, daughter of Horace Robinson, deceased. Of this union have been born two children, Mabel C. who is attending All Saints Academy in Sioux Falls, and William R. who remains at the parental home. Mrs. Swartz is a member of the Congregational church of Iowa Falls, Iowa.
WILLIAM HOLLEMAN, one of the enterprising citizens of Bon Homme county, was born in Holland on May 12, 1832, being the son of Peter and Gertrude (Donkersloot) Holleman, both parents natives of the Netherlands. Holleman and family came to America in 1855 and settled in Ottawa county, Michigan, where he purchased land and cleared a farm, upon which he and his good wife spent the remainder of their lives. Mr. Holleman was twice married, the subject of this review being the only child of the first union. His second wife, whose maiden name was Mary Pruisen, bore him four children, namely: Johanna, Leentje, Anna, and Arie, all of whom live in Ottawa county, Michigan, where the family originally settled.
William Holleman was reared and educated in the land of his birth and at the age of twenty-three accompanied his parents to America, locating with them in the state of Michigan. He began farming for himself in Ottawa county and in due time became the possessor of one hundred and ninety acres of land, which he improved and on which he lived and prospered until the year 1885, when he sold out and moved to Bon Homme county, South Dakota. On coming west, Mr. Holleman purchased three hundred and twenty acres of land, which he has since converted into one of the finest farms in that part of the county, and he has also added to his realty from time to time until he now owns, with his sons, one thousand four hundred acres, five hundred and seventy of which are under cultivation and otherwise well improved.
As a farmer Mr. Holleman stands in the front rank, as prosperitv has continuously attended him, and he is today one of the leading agriculturists in his part of the state. In addition to the large crops of corn, wheat, oats, and hay which his place produces, he is quite extensively interested in live stock, devoting his attention to fine shorthorn and Durham cattle, Poland-China hogs, and several breeds of horses, in the raising of which he has achieved a reputation much more than local. He is a great admirer of his adopted country and its free institutions, manifests a lively interest in national and state questions as well as local affairs and in politics votes the Republican ticket. In matters religious he has strong faith and well-defined opinions, being a worthy and consistent member of the Dutch Reformed church, in the faith of which he was born and reared and with which the majority of his family are also identified.
Mr. Holleman was married November 22, 1859, to Miss Clara Ulburg, a native of Holland, who bore him thirteen children and departed this life on April 21, 1902. Mrs. Holleman was a zealous member of the church to which her husband belongs, and a lady of beautiful Christian character and of many excellent qualities. She reared her children to industrious habits, early instilled into their minds and hearts a love of truth and right and by example as well as precept, taught them to live lives of usefulness and honor. The following are the names of the children born to Mr. and Mrs. Holleman: Peter, a graduate of a literary institution in Holland and of the University of Michigan, now a physician practicing his profession at Roseland, Iowa; John, a prosperous farmer and stock raiser of Bon Homme county; Garrett, who is engaged in agricultural pursuits near Jamestown, Michigan; Edward, of Bon Homme county and a farmer by occupation, as is also Leonard, the fifth in order of birth; James, Timothy, Henry, David, William, Clarence, Ida, and Gertrude are still with their father on the homestead.
JACOB P. RESNER, cashier of the bank of Scotland, Bon Homme county, was born in Plotzk, South Russia, on the 14th of March, 1863, being a son of Andrew and Anna M. (Lyer) Resner, of whose two children he is the elder, the other being Dr. Andrew K., who is a successful practicing physician at Manning, Iowa. The father of the subject was a native of Wurtemberg, Germany, where he was reared to the life of a farmer, continuing to there devote his attention to this great basic industry until 1877, when he emigrated with his family to the United States, spending a short interval in the state of Iowa and thence coming directly to the territory of Dakota, locating in Hutchinson county, where he entered claim to three quarter sections of land, under the homestead, pre-emption and tree-culture acts, respectively, and here he has ever since continued to make his home, having improved his land and placed it under a high state of cultivation and having thus contributed to the development of the resources of the great state of South Dakota. He has been successful in his labors and is now one of the representative and substantial citizens of Hutchinson county. He is a Republican in politics and has held various local offices of public trust, ever retaining the confidence of his fellow men. His devoted and cherished wife died in the fatherland, in 1869, and he later married Miss Caroline Stortz, and they are the parents of four children, Daniel and John, who reside in Scotland, Bon Homme county; Emanuel, who remains at the parental home; and Mary, who is the wife of L.W. Hoffman, of the village of Scotland.
Jacob P. Resner, to whom this sketch is dedicated, was about eight years of age at the time of his father's emigration from Germany to America, and he received his education in both German and English, having prosecuted his studies in the public schools of South Dakota after the family here took up their abode. That he made good use of the advantages thus accorded is shown in the fact that he was for three years successfully engaged in teaching in the district schools of Hutchinson county prior to his marriage, which occurred in 1885. After his marriage he settled on a quarter section of land in that county, having secured the same as a preemption claim, proving up on the property after attaining his legal majority. He made good improvements on his farm and devoted his attention to its cultivation for four years, at the expiration of which he removed to Scotland, in the adjoining county of Bon Homme, to accept the position of treasurer and manager of the Farmers Elevator Company. He retained this incumbency two years and then purchased the elevator of the company, continuing its proprietor for the ensuing seven years, when he disposed of the property and became manager of the elevators here owned by the Spencer Grain Company, an important corporation engaged in the handling of grain throughout this section. He remained with this concern three years, during which time he was also individually engaged in the real-estate business having his office on Main street in the village of Scotland. He continued in the real-estate business after severing his connection with the company mentioned and also accepted a position as manager of the local interests of Shannerd Brothers, extensive grain buyers of Bridgewater, this state. In August, 1902, Mr. Resner accepted the position of cashier of the Bank of Scotland, one of the solid and popular monetary institutions of this section, and he has since continued to give most discriminating service in this important executive office, gaining to the bank new prestige and handling its affairs with marked ability and to the entire satisfaction of its stockholders. Shannerd Brothers were most reluctant to dispense with his services and finally prevailed upon Mr. Resner to continue in their employ as manager of their interests in this section, and the details of the business he now assigns principally to a deputy, though maintaining a general supervision of all transactions. The political support of the subject is given in an unqualified way to the Republican party, of whose principles he is a stanch advocate, having been prominent in political affairs in a local way for a number of years past. He served four years as a member of the village council and for the past six years has been a valued member of the board of education, while for three years he was incumbent of the office of village assessor and is in tenure of this office at the time of this writing. His religious faith is that of the German Congregational church, of which both he and his wife are zealous members, and he is prominently identified with the Masonic fraternity, being affiliated with Scotland Lodge, No. 52, Free and Accepted Masons; Scotland Chapter, No. 31, Royal Arch Masons; Yankton Commandery, Knights Templar; and Yankton Consistory, No. 1, of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, at Yankton. He also holds membership in Security Lodge, No. 48, Knights of Pythias, and Scotland Camp, No. 977, Modern Woodmen of America.
On the 14th of December, 1885, Mr. Resner was united in marriage to Miss Christina Redmann, of Yankton county, whither her parents emigrated from Russia in 1873. Of this union have been born seven children, namely: Edward, William, Julius, Amerlia, Lydia, Bertha, and Arthur.
CHESTER C. TORRENCE is a native of the state of Iowa, having been born in Jones county, on the 13th of April, 1873, the fourth in order of birth of the six children of Adam C. and Almira J. (Rooney) Torrence. Of the children we enter brief record as follows: George A. is a resident of Bon Homme county and is associated with our subject in the management of the old homestead farm and in the cattle business; Cora B. is the wife of Frank Cole, of York county, Virginia; Nellie M. is deceased; Chester C. is the immediate subject of this sketch; David M. is assistant to the subject in the postoffice; and Charles is deceased. Adam C. Torrence was born in Fairfield county, Ohio, on the 27th of August, 1840, and in 1849 he accompanied his parents on their removal to Tama county, Iowa, where he was reared to manhood, receiving a good common-school education. In 1861 he tendered his services in defense of the Union, enlisting as a private in Company B, Ninth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, with which he proceeded to the front, remaining in the service three and one-half years, or until the close of the war, his regiment having served under both Sherman and Grant, while the history of the Ninth Iowa is the record of his gallant military career as a true and loyal son of the republic. After the close of the war he returned to Iowa, and after his marriage located on a farm in Jones county, where he continued to reside until 1883, when he came to South Dakota and purchased a farm three miles east of the town of Bon Homme, in the county of the same name. In 1898 he removed to Montana and later to Idaho, which is now his home, while he is devoting his attention to fruit culture. He is a Republican in politics and both he and his wife are exemplary members of the Methodist Episcopal church, while fraternally he is a valued member of the Grand Army of the Republic. He is a man of influence in his community but has never sought the honors of public office of any order. Elmira J. (Rooney) Torrence was born in Warren county, Indiana, on the 27th of September, 1843, and she accompanied her parents on their removal to Jones county, Iowa, in 1850, being there reared and educated, and thus both the Torrence and Rooney families are to be noted as having been pioneers of the favored state of Iowa.
Chester C. Torrence, whose name initiates this article, received his early educational training in the public schools of his native county in Iowa and was about ten years of age at the time of the family removal to South Dakota. As early as his fourteenth year he began to depend upon his own resources, being a boy of marked energy and ambition, while his self-reliance prompted him to prove his mettle, and he worked on farms or at such other occupations as could secure. For nearly six years he devoted his attention to the drilling of artesian wells in various portions of South Dakota, being successful in his efforts and being careful to conserve his financial resources. In 1900 he located in Tabor and engaged in the buying and shipping of live stock and grain, in which connection he has shown much business tact and acumen and has met with unqualified success. In June, 1901, he was appointed postmaster of the town, and in 1902 he here established a local telephone exchange, which he still owns and operates, the same being of great benefit to the town through the facilities which it offers. For the past two years he has also served as deputy sheriff of the county, while in politics he is a stanch advocate of the principles and policies of the Republican party, and fraternally is identified with Tabor Camp, No. 9087, Modern Woodmen of America, and Canton Lodge of Home Guardians. He is held in high esteem in the community and is known as one of the energetic and progressive young business men of the county.
On the 1st of February, 1903, Mr, Torrence was united in marriage to Miss H. Emma Cooley, daughter of Hon. J. P. Cooley of Bon Homme county.
JOHN H. SANFORD is the owner of a fine ranch of six hundred and forty acres in Bon Homme county, while he maintains his business headquarters and residence in the attractive town of Tyndall, the county seat. The state of Illinois figures as the place of his nativity, since he was born in Ogle county, on the 12th of December, 1847, a son 01 Jared W. and Henrietta (Sturgis) Sanford, of whose eight children only three are living at the present time: James W., who is a resident of Santa Clara county, California; Sarah, who is the wife of Aaron Rood, of Pueblo, Colorado; and John H., who is the subject of this sketch. Jared Sanford was born in the state of Connecticut, where he was reared to the sturdy discipline of the farm and where his marriage was solemnized. Some time after thus assuming connubial responsibilities he removed to Ogle county, Illinois, where he was engaged in farming until about 1870, when he removed to Missouri and later to Dickinson county, Kansas, where he passed the remainder of his life, his death occurring in 1876, at which time he was seventy-one years of age. While his vocation in life was farming, he had distinctive mechanical ability, and for a number of years he did much work along this line, in connection with his agricultural operations, while he was also a successful stock grower, our subject having gained his initial experience in the breeding of stock under the effective direction of his father. Jared Sanford was a stanch Republican in his political proclivities and he and his wife were zealous members of the Congregational church, the latter having entered into eternal rest in 1854, at the age of forty-five years.
John H. Sanford was reared to farm life and secured his early educational discipline in the public schools, supplementing the same by a course in F.E. Arnold's business college, at Rockford, Illinois. On attaining his legal majority he came into possession of a valuable farm, of one hundred acres, the same having been a part of his father's old homestead in Ogle county, Illinois, and he devoted his attention to the cultivation of the same until the time of his marriage, which occurred on the 30th of December, 1869, when he led to the hymeneal altar Miss Louisa E. Stone, the only daughter of Joseph and Mary Stone, of Ogle county, Illinois, and thereafter he was associated with his father-in-law in the management of the latter's farm until 1880, while for a number of years he was extensively engaged in the buying and shipping of live stock, in which line of enterprise he was very successful, gaining a knowledge which has made him one of the best judges of stock to be found in South Dakota. In 1880 he came to South Dakota and secured a quarter section of land in Bon Homme county. He has since added to his landed estate in the county until he is now the owner of an entire section, as previously stated, and though the tract is valuable farming land he devotes his attention more specially to the cattle industry, being an extensive feeder of stock and a breeder of registered cattle and hogs. He has done much to improve the grade of stock raised in this section and his finely improved farm shows some of the finest specimens of cattle and hogs to be found in the confines of the state. He is progressive and discriminating in his methods and has been very successful in his operations since coming to South Dakota. In politics he gives his support to the Republican party, but he has never been an aspirant for public office. Fraternally he is identified with Bon Homme Lodge, No. 101, Free and Accepted Masons. He and his wife are the parents of one child, Harry Otis, who is a veterinary surgeon, being successfully established in the practice of his profession at Tyndall.
JAMES H. DICKSON, one of the leading citizens of Scotland, Bon Homme county, is a native of the old Empire state, having been born on a farm in St. Lawrence county, New York, on the 4th of September, 1844, a son of John and Catherine (McGregor) Dickson, both of whom were born in Scotland, of stanch old Scottish lineage, while both came to America as children, their respective parents having emigrated to this country and taken up their abode in the state of New York. The father of the subject passed his entire life in the northern part of that state, where he was a successful farmer. He passed away at the age of seventy-four years, having been a man of prominence and influence in his section and having held various local offices. He identified himself with the Republican party at the time of its organization and ever afterwards remained a stanch advocate of its principles, while both he and his wife held membership in the Presbyterian church, the latter having been summoned into eternal rest at the age of forty-two years.
The subject was reared under the invigorating discipline of the home farm and after availing himself of such advantages as were afforded in the common schools of the locality and period he completed a course of study in the Eastman Business College, at Poughkeepsie, New York. He continued to assist in the work and management of the home farm until he had attained the age of twenty-three years, when he went to the town of Gouverneur, St. Lawrence county, New York, where he engaged in the dry goods business in company with George P. Tait, under firm name of Tait & Dickson. This partnership continued about five years, at the of which the subject retired from the firm engaged in the merchant-tailoring business partnership with James Brodie, under the of Brodie & Dickson. Four years later, in 1879, Mr. Dickson established himself in the same of enterprise at Adams, Berkshire county, Massachusetts, being there a member of firm of Dickson & Legate. In 1882 he came South Dakota and located in Scotland, Bon Homme county, where he has ever since maintained his home. Here he opened a general mercantile establishment and engaged also in the buying of grain and hogs, in each of which lines of enterprise he built up an excellent business within a short interval. Upon the completion of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad through this section Mr. Dickson built and operated a chain of grain elevators from Lesterville to Armour and Parkston, while later he erected a large elevator in Geddes, and several of these monuments to his enterprising spirit are still owned and operated by him. He is a heavy shipper of hogs and grain, and in connection with the latter branch of industry he handles agricultural implements and coal in the various towns in which he buys grain. These statements clearly indicate that he is a man of affairs and one of marked capacity in an executive way, but he has proved equal to meeting all exigencies and is known as a careful, able and upright business man and as a citizen of value to the county and state. In 1894 his mercantile house and stock in Scotland were entirely destroyed by fire, but a fortnight later he had installed a new and comprehensive stock in his present attractive quarters, so that his large trade suffered but slight interruption.
In politics Mr. Dickson gives an unqualified allegiance to the Republican party and has been a prominent figure in its councils in the state, having been repeatedly a delegate to state and other conventions, while he has been strongly importuned by his party friends to permit the use this name in connection with candidacy for the state senate, but he has no ambition for official preferment, realizing that the demands of his business are exacting and require his undivided attention and believing that he has discharged his civic duties in his efforts to promote the cause of his party and to further the ends of good government. He is one of the prominent and valued members of the Presbyterian church, in which both he and his wife are zealous workers, and he has held the office of elder in the church since the age of twenty-eight years, having been elected to this office while a resident of Gouverneur, New York, and having been chosen incumbent of the same office in Scotland soon after identifying himself with the church here. Fraternally he is affiliated with Scotland Camp, Modern Woodmen of America.
On the 14th of February, 1872, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Dickson to Miss Mary J. Tait, who was born and reared in Rossie township, St. Lawrence county, New York, and they are the parents of one son, Cyrus J., who is associated with his father in business.
FREDERICK D. WICKS, who is presiding on the bench of the county, court of Bon Homme county an incumbency which he has retained for nearly a decade, is a native of the old Empire state of the Union, having been born in Fort Edward, Washington county, New York, on the 31st of July, 1866, and being the youngest of the seven children of Walter W. and Ellen (Kennedy) Wicks, all of whom survive except one, a brief record concerning them being as follows: William E. died at the age of forty-five years; Mary remains at the parental home; Walter J. is superintendent of the Indian school at Springfield, South Dakota; Sarah is the wife of James D. Keeting, a printer and publisher in Fort Edward, New York; Fannie is the wife of Frank B. Hall, a successful merchant of Hartford, New York; Albert H. is a cigar manufacturer and tobacconist at Fort Edward, that state; and Frederick D. is the immediate subject of this sketch. The parents are still living at the old home in Fort Edward, where the father of the subject has long been engaged in building and contracting. He is a Republican in his political proclivities and both he and his wife are members of the Episcopal church.
Judge Wicks secured his early educational training in the public schools of his native town and later supplemented this discipline by a course of study in the Fort Edward Collegiate Institute. In 1886 he began the reading of law in the office of R. O. Bascom, a prominent member of the bar of Fort Edward, and under his able preceptor ship he continued his technical studies until he became eligible for admission to the bar, gaining this distinction in 1890. Soon afterward he came to South Dakota and located in Scotland, where he established himself in the practice of his chosen profession. His ability so manifested itself that his novitiate in his new field of endeavor was of short duration and he soon took a prominent place at the bar of the county, while a gratifying recognition of his personal popularity and his professional talent came only two years after he took up his abode in the town, since in 1892 he was elected county judge, of which important office he has since remained consecutively incumbent save for an interim of two years. He has a distinctively judicial mind, is well poised and impartial in his rulings, which are based on a thorough knowledge of the science of jurisprudence in its various branches, and he has dignified the bench by his able and discriminating services. He is also city attorney of Scotland, a position which he has held for four terms, and he is known as a skillful advocate and a conservative and able counsellor. In politics the Tudere gives an unwavering allegiance to the Republican party, in whose cause he has rendered timely and efficient service, and both he and his wife are communicants of the Protestant Episcopal church, while fraternally he is identified with Scotland Lodge, No. 52, Free and Accepted Masons: Scotland Chapter, No. 31, Royal Arch Masons, and Oriental Consistory, No. 1, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, in Yankton.
On the 12th of November, 1895, was solemnized the marriage of Judge Wicks to Miss Mary L. Wood, of Springfield, this county. She was born in Springfield, Bon Homme county, in 1874. Judge and Mrs. Wicks have three children: Emma, Walter, and Ellen.
JOHN L. TURNER, in point of consecutive identification the oldest merchant in the state of South Dakota save for one exception, retaining his residence and business headquarters in the attractive town of Springfield, Bon Homme county, is a scion of a family which has been identified with the annals of American history from the early colonial epoch, and is himself a native of Geneseo, Livingston county, New York, where he was born on the 26th of August, 1843, being a son of Lyman and Martha (Lewis) Turner, of whose five children he is the eldest of the three surviving, his sisters being Mary H., a maiden lady, residing in New York city, and Isabella L., the wife of Charles S. Pease, of Albany, New York. The father of the subject was born in Connecticut, in 1809, his ancestors in the agnatic line having emigrated from England to America in 1648, taking up their abode in the colony of Massachusetts, whence representatives later went into Connecticut, where the name became one of prominence, as representative of the highest order of citizenship. Members of the family rendered valiant service as Continental soldiers during the war of the Revolution, and patriotism and loyalty have been distinguishing family traits in successive generations. As a young man Lyman Turner removed with his father, Matthey Turner, who was born in 1777, to New York city, whither an older brother had preceded them, and after remaining for a short time in the national metropolis he removed to Geneseo, that state, where he established himself in the mercantile business. In later years he became extensively engaged in the cattle business in that section of the Empire state, and was a member of the company which imported the first shorthorn cattle into that district. He eventually retired from mercantile pursuits and devoted his entire attention to the breeding of blooded live stock, in which connection he gained a high reputation, being very successful in his efforts and becoming an extensive land owner. He died at the age of fifty-five years, in the very prime of his honorable and useful manhood, his demise occurring in 1864. He was originally an old-line Whig in his political adherency, and espoused the cause of the Republican party at the time of its organization, ever afterward remaining a radical advocate of its principles, though he never sought official preferment. He and his wife were communicants of the Protestant Episcopal church and were persons of sterling character, retaining the high regard of all who knew them. The mother of the subject entered into the eternal life in 1861, at the age of forty-two years.
John L. Turner remained at the parental home until he had attained the age of twenty-two years and after completing a course of study in the high school at Geneseo he entered a private boarding school conducted by Dr. Reed, at Geneva, New York, and later continued his studies in a commercial college at Rochester, that state. After thus completing his educational discipline he became actively associated with his father in the cattle business, which he continued after the death of his father until 1867, when he removed to Ann Arbor, Michigan, where he resided until 1870, giving his attention to property interests of the estate in that locality. In the year last mentioned he cast in his lot with what is now the state of South Dakota, coming to Springfield and here establishing himself in the general merchandise business. About three years later he became associated with Henry E. Bonesteel in the prosecution of the enterprise, under the firm name of Bonesteel & Turner and this partnership obtained for a quarter of a century, being dissolved in 1898, after which John W. Turner, the son of our subject, became associated with him in the business, proving an able coadjutor, and the enterprise has since been continued under the firm name of J. L.Turner & Son. The business has grown to extensive proportions, drawing its trade from a wide radius of contiguous country, while the stock carried is select and comprehensive and the firm is one whose reputation for reliability and fair dealing is of the highest. Mr. Turner is also the owner and operator of the Artesian roller mills in Springfield, and for many years he also conducted a drug store in the town, having recently disposed of this branch of his business.
In 1864 Mr. Turner enlisted as a member of the Fifty-eighth New York National Guards, in which he was made sergeant major, and during his term of service he was on guard duty at Elmira, New York, receiving his honorable discharge in December, 1864. Mr. Turner has ever been a stanch adherent of the Republican party and has taken an active interest in promoting the party cause. Soon after coming to Springfield he was appointed postmaster of the town, being the first incumbent of this office, which he continued to hold for a number of years, while his also was the distinction of being the first mayor of the town, of which position he was likewise incumbent for several years. He may well be mentioned as one of the founders and builders of Springfield, to whose interests he has ever been most loyal, doing all in his power to promote its advancement and material upbuilding. In 1896 he was candidate of his party for presidential elector, and in 1892 he was an alternate delegate to the national Republican convention, in Minneapolis. He has been a member of the Masonic fraternity since 1865 and is a charter member of Mount Zion Lodge, No. 6, of Springfield; he was a delegate at the organization of the grand lodge of the territory of Dakota, being senior grand warden of this body in 1879. He is also a charter member of the Masonic Veterans Association and is identified with DeMolay Commandery, No. 3, Knights Templar at Yankton, and with El Riad Temple, Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, in Sioux Falls. He is one of the prominent members and a communicant of Ascension church, Protestant Episcopal, in whose organization he took an active part and he has been a member of its vestry from that time to the present. He was for several years a member of the board of education of Springfield, and in 1883 he was a member of the state constitutional convention, which assembled in Sioux Falls.
On the 17th of May, 1865, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Turner to Miss Mary A. Finley, of Geneseo, New York, and they the parents of one son, John W., who was born on the 8th of October, 1866, and who is now associated with his father in business, being one the able and popular young men of the county. Mrs. Turner entered into eternal rest on the 8th of March, 1884, having been a devoted communicant of the Episcopal church, and on the 2d February, 1888, Mr. Turner was united in marriage to Miss Fanny E. Howes, of Springfield, who presides with gracious dignity over their attractive home, no children having been born of this union.
CHRISTIAN HARTMANN is to be considered in every sense a pioneer of South Dakota and of Bon Homme county, where he is the owner of a fine landed estate and where he is held in high estimation by all who know him. He has been the architect of his own fortune, having come to America as a young man and without financial reinforcement, and having gained prosperity and independence through energy, perseverance and honest and earnest endeavor.
Christian Hartmann is a native of Oadalum, province of Hanover, Germany, where he was born on the 12th of November, 1840, being a son of Conrad and Lena (Langkap) Hartmann, who passed their entire lives in the fatherland, the former having been a wagonmaker by vocation. They became the parents of four children, of whom the subject is the youngest. Johanna is the wife of Christopher Lattamann, of Oadalum; Ludwig is a resident of Biarbaum Mill; and Henry died when twenty years of age. The subject was reared in his native land and received his educational training in its excellent schools. After leaving school he gave his attention to sugar manufacturing until 1869, when he severed the home ties and set forth to seek his fortunes in America, landing in New York and thence making his way westward to St. Louis, Missouri, where he remained ten days, after which he embarked on a Missouri river steamboat and started forth in search of a location. He came up the river to Niobrara, Nebraska, across the river from South Dakota, and in that locality he took up a squatter's claim of one hundred and sixty acres, in what is now Knox county, Nebraska, the nearest neighbor being twenty-five miles distant, while game of all sorts was abundant and the Indians much in evidence. Two years after he had taken his claim the same reverted to the government, which demanded the land for military reservation purposes. In 1873 Mr. Hartmann took up an Indian pre-emption claim in township 92, Bon Homme county, South Dakota, and later secured a homestead claim adjoining and this property is an integral part of his present estate. For several years after coming to this section Mr. Hartmann was employed by the government as engineer in a sawmill, receiving seventy-five dollars a month in recompense for his services and utilizing this income in the development and improvement of his ranch. In 1877 he went to the Indian territory, where he continued in government employ for the ensuing five years, at the expiration of which, in 1882, he came with his wife to the farm in this county and settled down to agricultural pursuits and to the raising of live stock, with which lines of enterprise he has ever since been identified. He is now the owner of twelve hundred and eighty acres of valuable land, and the place has the best of improvements, the original and diminutive log house having given place to a commodious frame residence, which he erected in 1885, the same having been the second frame dwelling built in this section of the county, while he has since remodeled and otherwise improved the building. His entire ranch is well fenced and three hundred and twenty acres are under cultivation, the balance being utilized for grazing purposes and for the raising of hay, etc. He has a large and substantial barn and other good farm buildings, has set out a grove of trees, now well matured, and the place is one of the attractive ones of the county and bespeaks thrift and prosperity. Mr. Hartmann gives special attention to the raising of cattle and horses of excellent grade, as well as hogs and sheep, having an average herd of one hundred head of cattle and having shipped three car loads of cattle, and hogs in 1903. The home is one in which are found evidences of refined taste, books, works of art, a piano, etc., adding to its attractions, while its hospitality is genial and kindly, the latch-string ever hanging out. In politics Mr. Hartmann is a stanch Republican, but has never sought or desired official preferment, though he shows a helpful interest in local affairs of a public nature. He is a member of the Lutheran church, in whose faith he was reared, and his wife is a member of the Congregational church.
At Perkins, South Dakota, on the 3d of July, 1881, Mr. Hartmann was united in marriage to Miss Lizzie Knight, who was born and reared in Duquoin, Illinois, and who was a resident of Cleardale, Kansas, at the time of her marriage, being a daughter of Albert Knight, a pioneer of Illinois. Mr. and Mrs. Hartmann have eight children, all of whom still remain in the home circle, though the sons and two daughters are at this time students in the State Normal School at Springfield, this county. The names of the children are here entered in order of birth: Leona, William, Mary, Ellen, Carl, Albert (died when six months old), Lassara, and Grace.
ISAAC SCHMIDT of Perkins, Bon Homme county, was born in Heinrischdorf, Russia, on the 13th of August, 1859, and is a son of Benjamin and Sarah Schmidt, who were likewise born and reared in that same province, where the father was engaged in milling, weaving and farming until September, 1874. In 1786 Catharine II of Russia invited the Mennonites in Germany to settle in Russia, granting them religious liberty. Many of them accepted the invitation and established their homes there. In 1870 strong efforts were made by Russian officials to have the edict repealed and thus make all male residents subject to military duty. Then Mr. Schmidt decided to emigrate with his family to the United States, landing in New York, and immediately afterward coming to the territory of Dakota. They remained two weeks in Yankton and then Mr. Schmidt entered claim to three hundred and twenty acres of government land in what is now township 93, Bon Homme county, and the original home of the family was a dugout of the type so common in the early pioneer epoch. He developed a good farm and he and his wife still reside on the place, being numbered among the sterling pioneers of the county and having the high regard of all who know them. He is independent in his political proclivities and both he and his wife are members of the Mennonite church, exemplifying their faith in their daily walk. They had many vicissitudes and privations to encounter in the early days of their residence in the territory, and the work of developing the farm was accomplished with meager facilities, while Mr. Schmidt found employment in various ways in order to earn the money with which to provide for his family and carry forward the improvement of his place, which is now one of the best in this section. In the family were nine children, all of whom are living and well placed in life, the subject of this sketch having been the fifth in order of birth.
Isaac Schmidt secured his early educational discipline in the denominational school of his fatherland, and was a lad of fifteen years at the time of the family immigration to America. Owing to the conditions of time and place he received but little schooling after coming to Dakota, but he has gained a broad fund of knowledge of practical order through personal application and through experience in connection with the active affairs of life. As a boy he assisted in cutting hay on the pioneer farm, utilizing a scythe for this purpose, and the first property which he accumulated through his own efforts was a cow. At the age of fifteen years he began working on the farm, for a stipend of six dollars a month, being thus engaged for three years and with his savings he purchased a pair of steers, which he used for a team. At the age of twenty years he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of wild land in township 93, this county, and this constitutes his present finely improved ranch. The land is under a high state of cultivation, is well fenced, has an orchard of twelve acres, which yields good crops, while in addition to general farming and stock raising Mr. Schmidt devotes special attention to gardening, being one of the most successful horticulturists in this section. In 1894 he erected his present attractive residence, and the other buildings on the place are of substantial order, all giving evidence of thrift and prosperity. He is independent in his political views and is essentially public-spirited and progressive, taking an interest in all that conserves the general welfare of the county and state in which he has made his home from his boyhood days and to whose development he has contributed his quota. Both he and his wife are consistent members of the Mennonite church, in whose faith they were reared.
On the 5th of May, 1878, Mr. Schmidt was united in marriage to Miss Aganela Unruh, who was born in Heinrischdorf, Russia, on the 21st of January, 1858, being a daughter of Henry Unruh, who died in Russia. Mr. and Mrs. Schmidt have six children. Henry, who married Miss Kate Boese, and who is a successful farmer and schoolteacher of this county, having one son; and Benjamin, Annie, Bertha, Lena, and Mary, who remain at the parental home. All the children receive good educational advantages, and all are proficient in music.
EMIL KREBER, a leading farmer and representative citizen of Bon Homme county, is a native of Alsace-Loraine, Germany, and was born on November 21, 1869, being one of twelve children, whose parents were John and Magdalene (Schindele) Kreber. These parents immigrated to the United States in 1878 and settled in Iowa, where the father purchased land and engaged in agriculture, in connection with which he also carried on blacksmithing, having learned the trade in his native country. Mr. Kreber did not live long to enjoy the advantages and privileges he found in the new world, as he died about three and a half years after moving to Iowa. His widow survives and at this time makes her home in Plymouth county, Iowa, in which city she is well known and has a large circle of friends.
Emil Kreber was about nine years old he came to America and until the age of twenty-one he lived at home, assisting with the of the farm and at intervals attending the schools. In 1891 he came to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, and purchasing one hundred sixty acres of land in section 12, township, addressed himself to the task of developing a farm and establishing a home, in of which respects he has been remarkably successful, as is attested by his present high as an agriculturist and stock raiser and the commanding position he occupies in business circles and in the domain of citizenship. In the summer of 1899 Mr. Kreber purchased an additional quarter section of land in Springfield township, which he has since developed and otherwise improved, and his farm of three hundred and twenty acres is now considered one of the finest and most attractive country homes in the county of Bon Homme. He raises all the grain crops grown in this part of the state, but makes hay a specialty, devoting a great deal of attention to timothy and clover, besides curing every year many tons of native grass, which he puts up for his live stock. As a raiser of fine cattle and hogs he has achieved enviable repute and he stands today among the leaders of the industry in Bon Homme county, his domestic animals of all kinds being of superior breeds and of as high grades as any in the southeastern part of the state. In addition to agriculture and stock raising Mr. Kreber was engaged for some time in the mercantile business at Tyndall and Springfield. He conducted his stores from the farm, however, in order to give personal attention to all of his affairs, but after a few years disposed of his mercantile establishments, the better to look after the large and steadily growing agricultural and livestock interests which he now commands.
Mr. Kreber takes a keen and intelligent interest in politics and public affairs and for a number of years he has been considered one of the Democratic leaders in Bon Homme county, being a judicious adviser in the councils of his party, an influential worker and a successful campaigner. While ready at all times to work for the success of the party and its candidates, he is not an aspirant for office, preferring to labor for others rather than accept public honors at the hands of his fellow citizens. He is well informed on the leading questions of the day, his opinions have weight among his friends and associates and in many respects he may be considered a leader of thought in his community.
Mr. Kreber was married in Bon Homme county, in 1896, to Miss Mary Guckeisen, who has borne him four children, Carrie, George, Julia, and Napoleon. Mr. and Mrs. Kreber are Catholics in religion and staunch and loyal supporters of the Holy Mother church. They enjoy high social position, are popular with a large number of friends, and give their influence to all good work and charitable enterprises and to whatever makes for the material and moral welfare of the neighborhood in which they live.
JOSEPH M. PETRIK, one of the successful and popular business men and influential citizens of Tabor, Bon Homme county, was born in Spillville, Winneshiek county, Iowa on the 16th of August, 1869, being a son of Mathias and Mary Petrik, both of whom were born and reared in Bohemia, Austria, where their marriage was solemnized. They emigrated thence to America and became numbered among the early settlers in Winneshiek county, Iowa, where the father took up a homestead claim of government land and set himself to the task of reclaiming the same to cultivation, meeting with the struggles and hardships which attended the lot of the average pioneer on the broad prairies of this now favored and opulent commonwealth. The subject of this sketch was a child of about two years at the time of his parents removal to this state, and he was reared to the age of ten years on the home farm, attending the primitive district school as opportunity afforded. At the early age mentioned he went to the city of Chicago, where he completed his educational work in the public schools, being compelled to depend upon his own resources in prosecuting his studies, as the financial circumstances of his parents were such that they could lend him but slight aid. He there continued to attend school until he had attained the age of sixteen years, his labors in the connection having perforce been such as to make him the more appreciative of the advantages which he thus gained, and he then returned to South Dakota, and secured a position as clerk in a general store at Armour, Douglas county, being gradually entrusted with better and more important positions until 1894, when he went to Yankton Reservation, Charles Mix county, and took up a homestead claim of one hundred and sixty acres, where he remained for three years, during which time he was engaged in preparing the land for farming. A failure of crops on account of a brought caused him to haul all water used by his family and with which to water his stock, for a distance of six miles, the water being procured from a private well situated on a creek bottom. About this time a neighbor, Frank Seip, and wife, were murdered and robbed by one Charlie Basl, and this naturally made Mrs. Petrik nervous and dissatisfied with that locality, so it was decided to dispose of all personal property and allow the tree claim to revert to the government, and in 1897 the subject came to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, opening a store in the village of Tabor, where he has since been successfully engaged in this line of enterprise save for an interim of one year, during which he conducted a store at Scotland. He is now senior member of the firm of Petrik & Honner, general merchants, and the firm has built up a prosperous business, while both of the interested principals stand high in the confidence and esteem of the community. In politics Mr. Petrik gives a stanch support to the Democratic party and has ever shown a proper interest in public affairs, particularly of a local nature, while in 1900 he was candidate of his party for the office of county sheriff, being defeated with the balance of the ticket. He and his wife are communicants of the Catholic church, and fraternally he is identified with the Knights of St. George and with the local lodge of the Western Bohemian Catholic Union.
On the 12th of October, 1892, was the marriage of Mr. Petrik to Miss Mary A. Novotny, who was born in Bon Homme county, this state, on the 28th of November, 1876, a daughter of Joseph and Rosa Novotny, who were early settlers in this section of the state. Of this union have been born five children, namely: George, Louise, Joseph, Edward, and Albina, all of whom still remain beneath the home roof.
RUTHERFORD H. FULTON, late postmaster at Avon, Bon Homme county, was a native of the state of Illinois, having been born on a farm in Jo Daviess county on the 2d of May, 1877, and being a son of Peter and Caroline (Whitman) Fulton, the former of whom was born in Pennsylvania and the latter in Illinois. Of their twelve children six are living at the present time. Peter Fulton was reared on the homestead farm in the old Keystone state of the Union, where he remained until he had attained the age of eighteen years, when, in 1847, he came westward to Illinois, where he was employed on various farms for a number of years, carefully conserving his resources and thus being finally able to purchase a tract of land in Joe Daviess county, where he continued to be engaged in agricultural pursuits until the time of his death, which occurred in 1897, his devoted wife passing away in the same year. They were worthy church members, and the father was a stanch Republican in his political adherency.
Rutherford H. Fulton was reared on the homestead farm and acquired his educational discipline in the public schools of Jo Daviess county. In 1896 he went to Plymouth county, Iowa, where he secured employment in the office of the Akron Register, a weekly newspaper. In the following summer he returned to Illinois, where he remained about one year, at the expiration of which, in the summer of 1897, he returned to Akron, Iowa, and purchased a half interest in the publication in the office of which he had worked the preceding year, and there he continued to be actively engaged in the newspaper business until May, 1900, when he disposed of his interests and came to South Dakota, purchasing an interest in a newspaper at Alcester, Union county, and being identified with its publication about one year. He then came to Avon and here established the Avon Clarion, whose publication he continued until the 1st of February, 1903, when he sold the plant and business to W. J. Robinson, having been appointed postmaster of the town in December, 1902. In that office he did much to improve the service and his administration met with unqualified approval while he enjoyed marked personal popularity in the village and surrounding country, his death, on July 17, 1903, being deeply regretted by all who knew him. He was a stalwart Republican in politics and was chairman of the first board of trustees of the village after its incorporation, while he served one term as justice of the peace of the village, and in 1902 was elected to the same office as a county official, but did not qualify, on account of his appointment as postmaster. He was a member of the ancient craft body of the Masonic fraternity: of Avon Camp, No. 8536, Modern Woodmen of America, and Avon Tent No. 61, Knights of the Maccabees.
On the 28th of September, 1898, Mr. Fulton was united in marriage to Miss Alice Myers, of Akron, Iowa. Two children have been born, Leon Ernest, born March 6, 1901, died July 10, 1901, and Ruth Hazel, born July 7, 1903.
PAUL LANDMANN, who is successfully engaged in the real-estate and lumber business in the town of Scotland, Bon Homme county, was born in Odessa, Russia, on the 22d of February, 1853, being a son of Anton and Louisa (Hoffman) Landmann and the only survivor of their three children. His brother, Emanuel, died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on the 28th of September, 1898, as a result of fever contracted in Porto Rico, where he served as a member of Company F, Third Illinois Volunteer Infantry, during the Spanish-American war. The father of our subject was born in Germany and always remained a citizen of that empire, though he went to Russia as a young man and there maintained his home about a quarter of a century. A year after the subject came to the United States and located in South Dakota his parents joined him here, and this state continued to be their home until their deaths.
Paul Landmann was reared to maturity in Russia, and there acquired his educational training in the excellent schools of his native place. In 1873, at the age of twenty years, he bade adieu to his native land and set forth to seek his fortunes in America. He landed in New York city and from the national metropolis continued his westward journey to what was then the territory of Dakota, arriving in Yankton, the capital, with a cash fund of only five dollars. There he was for seven years employed in the hardware store of the firm of Wynn & Buckwalter, in the capacity of salesman, and in 1880 he came to Scotland, Bon Homme county, where he engaged in the same line of enterprise upon his own responsibility, beginning operations upon a modest scale and succeeding in building up an excellent trade. He continued the business about seven years, when he disposed of the same, having been elected to the office of county treasurer, in which he served one term, after which he was incumbent of the office of register of deeds of the county for a term, having proved a most efficient executive in each of these capacities. After his retirement from office Mr. Landmann returned from Tyndall, the county seat, to Scotland, where he engaged in the real estate business, in which he has since continued, having handled much valuable property in this and other counties of the state. In February, 1903, Mr. Landmann expanded the sphere of his business operations in Scotland, by establishing extensive lumber yards in the town, and he already controls a large part of the lumber business of this section. He is the owner of eleven hundred and twenty acres of land in Hutchinson county and much valuable real estate, both improved and unimproved, in the village of Scotland. He is a stalwart Republican in his political adherency and is a strong factor in the councils of his party in this section, and both he and his wife are members of the Reformed church.
Mr. Landmann was united in marriage to Miss Caroline Serr, of Scotland, this county, and they are the parents of seven children.
CLAUS BRANDT is a native of Hanover, Germany, and dates his birth from March 7, 1858. His parents, Claus and Annie (Bredehoeft) Brandt, spent their lives in the kingdom of Hanover and reared a family of six children, the subject of this review being the fifth of the number; the others are Angelus, who lives in Germany; John, a resident of Bon Homme county, South Dakota; Maggie, who has never left Hanover; Martha, deceased; and Annie, whose home is in the state of Kansas.
The early life of Claus Brandt was spent in his native land and he received a good education in the public schools of the same. In 1873, when fifteen years of age, he came to America and, settling in Missouri, engaged in farming, which vocation he followed in that state until 1884, when he changed his abode to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, locating in Jefferson township, where he bought a quarter section of land, to which he subsequently added a similar amount by purchase. Still later he bought an additional quarter section and in the fall of 1903 purchased an additional eighty acres, making his realty at this time four hundred acres, nearly all of which he has reduced to cultivation and improved with good buildings, and from the proceeds of which he has realized a handsome competence.
Mr. Brandt has devoted his attention exclusively to farming and stock raising and his success has been encouraging, he being at this time one of the leading agriculturists of the township in which he resides as well as one of its most enterprising and progressive citizens. In politics he is a decided Republican and an active worker for his party, but he has never asked office at the hands of his fellow citizens, nor aspired to public station of any kind.
On the 3d day of October, 1886, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Brandt and Miss Annie Kringer, the latter a native of Prussia and the daughter of John and Mary Ernestine (Schulz) Kringer, who came to the United States in 1869 and settled in Hardin county, Iowa, later removing to Bon Homme, South Dakota, where their deaths subsequently occurred. To Mr. and Mrs. Brandt have been born six children, whose names are as follows; Angelus, John, Henry, Anna, Edward F., and Helena, all living and giving every promise of useful and honorable careers.
FREDERICK RITTER, a prosperous farmer and stock raiser of Jefferson township, Bon Homme county, is a native of Germany, born in the kingdom of Hanover, August 22, 1841. His father, also named Frederick, died in Hanover, at the age of forty-two, and later the mother came to America and settled in Iowa, where her death occurred some years ago. Frederick and Catherine (Bloom) Ritter reared a family of three children, one son, the subject of this review, and two daughters, the older of whom, Christina, married Henry Rhoderwolt and the younger, Louisa by name, having died in the land of her birth.
Frederick Ritter was reared and educated in Hanover and at the age of twenty began life for himself as a carpenter. Shortly after leaving home he came to America, arriving in this country in 1864 and settled at Richton, Cook county, Illinois, where he worked at his trade during the ensuing eight years, meanwhile accumulating a handsome property, consisting of several lots and five and a half acres of valuable land in the vicinity of the town. Disposing of these possessions in 1871, he started west and in the spring of the following year settled in Butler county, Iowa, where he followed his chosen calling until 1881. In the spring of the latter year Mr. Ritter came to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, and took up a quarter section of land in Jefferson township, which he still owns and on which he has made a number of substantial improvements, converting it into one of the most productive and desirable farms in the neighborhood. He has also added to his realty from time to time and now owns five hundred and sixty acres of as fine land as the county of Bon Homme can boast, the greater part of which is under a high state of cultivation, besides containing good buildings, fences and many other evidences of prosperity. He is an enterprising farmer and since coming west has taken advantage of every opportunity to improve his financial condition, ranking at the present time with the leading agriculturists and stock raisers of Bon Homme county, as well as enjoying high standing as an energetic, public spirited man of affairs.
Mr. Ritter not only erected all the buildings on his own place, but has also done considerable mechanical work in the neighborhood and throughout the county. He is a skillful carpenter and for several years after coming to this state his services were in great demand, many of the best residences, barns and other buildings in the surrounding country bearing evidence to his efficiency as a master of his trade. In politics Mr. Ritter votes for the man instead of party and advocates principles which in his judgment make for the best interests of his country. In religion he subscribes to the Lutheran creed and for a number of years has been a faithful and consistent member of the church, contributing liberally of his means to the support of the local congregation to which he belongs.
FREDERICK DAHLENBURG, one of the sterling pioneers of Bon Homme county, where he has maintained his home for thirty years, is a native of the fair old city of Berlin, Germany, where he was born on the 28th of July, 1843, being a son of John and Mary Dahlenburg, both of whom were likewise born in that city, the father having been a wagonmaker by trade and having followed the same in his fatherland until 1878, when he emigrated thence to the United States, where two of his sons had preceded him, and he located in Grant county, Wisconsin, and there both he and his estimable wife passed the remainder of their lives, his death occurring in 1880, while she passed away in 1900. They become the parents of five children, namely: Mary, who is the wife of John Ness, of Grant county, Wisconsin; Charles, who is one of the representative farmers of Bon Homme county, South Dakota; Minnie, who is the wife of Fred Jack, of Grant county, Wisconsin; Frederick, who is the immediate subject of this sketch; and Augusta, who is the wife of Charles Belz, of Lancaster, Wisconsin.
Frederick Dahlenburg was reared to maturity in his native city, in whose excellent schools he secured his early educational discipline, after which he turned his attention to army service, in which he was engaged until 1873, when he came to America, in company with his wife. They located in Grant county, Wisconsin, in April of that year and there remained until May, 1874, when they came to what is now the state of South Dakota, where our subject's brother, Charles, had located in the preceding year, and here they became numbered among the early settlers of Bon Homme county. Mr. Dahlenburg entered a homestead claim of government land, in township 93, and this one hundred and sixty acres constitutes an integral portion of his present fine landed estate. He began the improvement of his land, establishing his home in a primitive sod house, and through his indefatigable energy and good management the wild land has been transformed into a fertile and productive farm, while as prosperity has attended his efforts he has added to the area of his ranch from time to time until he is now the owner of six hundred and seventy-two acres, of which three hundred and fifty acres are under a high state of cultivation, while upon the place have been made the best of improvements, including the erection of a modern farm dwelling, and the large and substantial barn. Good fences surround and intersect the ranch, and on the place are to be found a good orchard and fine groves of shade trees all planted by the owner. Mr. Dahlenburg secures excellent yields of wheat, oats, and corn, giving special attention to the propagation of corn, and he is also one of the successful stock growers of the county, having an excellent grade of cattle and hogs, while he also raises horses for his own use. Mr. Dahlenburg is independent in his political views, and he and his wife are zealous members of the Lutheran church, and enjoy the highest degree of respect and confidence in the community in which they have so long made their home.
In his native city of Berlin on the 28th of November, 1869, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Dahlenburg to Miss Matilda Steffien, a daughter of August Steffien, who passed his entire life in Germany. Mr. and Mrs. Dahlenburg have five children, to whom they have given excellent educational advantages, and of them we enter the following brief record: William, who is associated with his father in the management of the home farm, was married on the 19th of February, 1903, to Miss Delia Paul, who was born and reared in Linn county, Iowa; Annie, is the wife of Charles Orth, who is engaged in the furniture business at Tyndall, this county; and Henry, Frederick, Jr., and Robert remain at the parental home and are attending the local school.
BENJAMIN L. WALKER, farmer and stock raiser and since 1893 treasurer and tax collector of Lyman county, South Dakota, is a native of Pennsylvania and the son of Abner and Lucinda (Risling) Walker, now living in Hutchinson county, South Dakota, the father being a retired farmer and stock raiser. Abner Walker moved his family to South Dakota in 1870 and located on a homestead near Yankton, where he lived a few years, subsequently changing his abode to Bon Homme county. He became a large land holder and well-to-do farmer and stock raiser in Bon Homme and after acquiring a competence moved to the town of Olivet where as stated above, he is now passing the evening of a well-spent life in honorable retirement. Of his four children all are living.
Benjamin L. Walker was born March 26, 1866, in Bedford county, Pennsylvania, and the age of four years was brought by his parents to South Dakota, where he grew to maturity and has since lived and in the public school which he received a fair education. Reared amid the stirring scenes of farm life and early taught the varied duties of agriculture, his training has been mostly of a practical character, acquired in the stern school of experience, by coming in contact with the world in different business capacities. The family came to this state when scattering settlements were few and far between, and he experienced his full share of the vicissitudes incident to life on the frontier. He spent his youth on the homestead near Yankton, later assisted his father develop and improve the latter's land in the county of Bon Homme, and on reaching the age when young men are expected to leave home and form their own plans for the future, he turned his attention to agriculture and stock raising, both of which callings he followed with success and financial profit until 1900, when he was elected treasurer and tax-collector of Lyman county, since which time he has lived in the town of Oacoma, the county seat.
Mr. Walker owns a fine ranch of two hundred acres, a part of which is under cultivation, the rest being devoted to live stock, in the prosecution of which business he has met with most encouraging results, making a specialty of the noted Hereford breed of cattle, for which there is always a strong demand at liberal prices. He has made a number of substantial improvements on his place, having good buildings, including a comfortable and attractive residence, which while he occupied was furnished with all the comforts and conveniences calculated to make rural life desirable. The better to attend to the duties of his office, he changed his residence, shortly after his election, to the seat of justice, where he now has a commodious home and with the material growth and prosperity of which town he has been actively identified. Mr. Walker is one of the leading Republicans of Lyman county, and as an energetic and able counsellor he has contributed greatly to the success of Republican principles in the county of Lyman and elsewhere.
In the year 1894, Mr .Walker and Miss Leila Brown, of Iowa, were united in marriage, Mrs. Walker's parents at this time being residents of Lyman county, South Dakota. Her father is a farmer and stock raiser, owning a valuable ranch and devoting especial attention, not only to raising cattle and horses, but to the buying and shipping the same, doing a large and thriving business and rapidly becoming one of the wealthy men of the section of country in which he lives. Mr. and Mrs. Walker have an interesting family of six children whose names are Loretta, Maude, Edyth, Viola, Ivan, and Florence, all living and those old enough attending the public schools of Oacoma.
Rev. Emanual Bouska
VERY REV. EMMANUEL A. BOUSKA is pastor of St Wenceslaus' parish at Tabor, Bon Homme county, where he has erected the largest church edifice of the state and the largest, most commodious and with modern improvements equipped school, and has made his parish one of the most flourishing and important in the diocese. He was born in Borovany, Bohemia, Austria, on the 18th of November, 1864, and is a son of Anthony and Barbara (Hruska) Bouska, the former of whom was a native of Borovany, while the latter was born in Radetice, Bohemia, the respective dates of birth being November 29, 1826 and December 3, 1820. Anthony Bouska was a son of Joseph and Anna Bouska, and was the owner of valuable real estate in his native land at the time of his death, which occurred on the 17th of September, 1886. His wife, a daughter of Francis and Mary Hruska, is still living at the old homestead in Bohemia. Our subject received his early educational discipline in the excellent public schools at Bernardice, Bohemia, and took a classical course at Tabor, that kingdom. He afterward enrolled himself in the national army, having passed the required examinations, and after one year of service was promoted to the rank of first lieutenant. After the close of his military career Father Bouska entered the University of Vienna, where he studied law for one year, after which he was matriculated in the University of Graz, Styria, Austria, where he took up his theological studies, which he later continued and concluded at Chur, Switzerland, where he passed four years, at the expiration of which he was ordained to the priesthood by Rt. Rev. John Battaglia, bishop of Chur, on the 14th of July, 1888. He was thereafter an assistant priest in Europe until November, 1889, when he came to America and identified himself with the diocese of Nebraska, where he was assigned to a pastoral charge at Crete, Saline county, where he erected a church and parish house and where he remained until 1892, in which year he came to South Dakota and was assigned a parish at Kimball, Brule county. In 1893 he was transferred, by the late Bishop Marty, O. S. B., to Tabor, Bon Homme county, where he has since labored with splendid success and with unqualified devotion. Here he has accomplished a notable work, since, as before stated, there has been erected under his regime the largest church in the state, the same being forty-six by one hundred and thirty-two feet in dimensions and constructed of hydraulic pressed brick, at an expenditure of twenty-five thousand dollars Later he built a day and boarding parochial school, connected with the academy, of the same material, the building being fifty-six by sixty-six feet in lateral dimensions and four stories in height. The school at the time of this writing is in direct charge of seven Sisters of St. Benedict, from Vermillion, South Dakota, who work under the general supervision of Father Bouska, while in the school are fifty-two boarders and one hundred and six daily students, making a total of one hundred and fifty-five who are here receiving instruction. The management of the school, connected with the academy, is in the capable hands of Sister M. Clara, O. S. B. In 1899, in recognition of his ability and his peculiar eligibility for the office, Rt. Rev. Thomas O. Gorman, bishop of the diocese of Sioux Falls, appointed Father Bouska diocesan consultor, of which position he has since been incumbent. Since coming to the state Father Bouska has interested himself personally and prominently in political affairs, believing this action to be a duty of citizenship and in harmony with the precepts of the church, and he is today one of the most influential figures in public affairs in Bon Homme and is well known and highly respected by leading citizens throughout the state. At Tabor he has not only been an indefatigable worker in his parish, giving his time and energies to pastoral duties and also to the erection of buildings and the infusing of vigor into all departments of church work, but he has also been one of the most loyal citizens of the thriving little town, at whose cradle he stood, assisting in the organization of the village and having been most influential in its civic and social growth and development. He has brought about the organization of several benevolent societies for his people and is just at present building for them a society hall at an expenditure of three thousand dollars and has had at all times the affectionate regard and earnest cooperation of those among whom he has so zealously and effectively labored. He is known as one of the most able and forceful speakers in his native tongue in the northwest, and is a man of versatile talent and high scholarship, speaking the Bohemian, English, German, Latin, and Polish languages and reading with readiness the Greek, Hebrew, Italian, French, Spaniard, and all Slavonic languages. He is a member of the Roman Catholic Bohemian Union, the Catholic Knights, the Catholic Foresters, and Catholic Workmen.
ROBERT L. McINTOSH was born in Delaware county, Iowa, May 16, 1855, grew to maturity on a farm and received a practical education in the public schools. He remained in his native state until 1887, at which time he disposed of his interests there and moved to Springfield, South Dakota, where he spent some time dealing in horses, later purchasing one hundred and sixty acres of land in section 6, Homer township, Bon Homme county.
Mr. McIntosh has succeeded well as a farmer and at the present time owns a fine homestead of two hundred and eighty acres, two hundred of which are in cultivation, and in addition thereto he rents three hundred and sixty acres in the vicinity, devoting the greater part of the latter to livestock, in the raising of which he has achieved a wide and enviable reputation. He served two terms as county commissioner, one of the most important local offices within the gift of the people. Politically he is a zealous supporter of the Republican party.
PATRICK MARTIN, who resides near Running Waters, is one of eight children born to Patrick and Anna Martin, and dates his birth from March 17, 1835, having first seen the light of day near the city of Quebec, Canada.
The early life of Patrick Martin was spent in Canada, and, being reared to agricultural pursuits, has followed the same nearly ever since. In the year 1865 he was united in marriage with Miss Mary Malone, a native of Kilkenny, Ireland, and the daughter of William and Mary (Roach) Malone. After his marriage Mr. Martin engaged in farming and continued to live in Canada until the spring of 1881, when he moved to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, and settling at Running Water, entered the employ of the Chicago, Minneapolis, & St Paul Railroad, with which he was engaged during the ensuing nine years. Meanwhile he purchased one hundred and seventy-one acres of land near the above town and on severing his connection with the road at the expiration of the time noted moved to the same and began the work of its improvement. He has succeeded well as a farmer and now owns seven hundred acres of fine real estate, all but one hundred cleared and in a high state of cultivation, his improvements of all kinds being among the best in the county.
Politically Mr, Martin is a Democrat, and religiously belongs to the Catholic church, his wife being a member of that communion also.
FRED W. SCHAMBER, one of the leading business men of Eureka, McPherson county, was born in Krem, South Russia, on the 13th of December, 1860, and is a son of Martin Schamber, who was likewise born and reared in that locality, the family having been established in southern Russia during the time when Catherine was czarina. She was a German and induced many of her countrymen to locate in Russia, giving them grants of land and exempting them and their descendants from military service for a period of one hundred years. The expiration, of this period, a few years ago doubtless led to the emigration of many of these worthy Russo-Germans to America, and South Dakota is favored in having gained a large relative contingent of excellent citizens through this means, among them being the members of the Schamber family.
In 1874 Martin Schamber came with his family to America, landing in New York city on the 13th of August, and thence coming through to what is now the state of South Dakota. He arrived with his family in Yankton in August of that year, and soon afterward located on a farm in Yankton county, and there improved an excellent property. In 1881 he engaged in the hardware and implement business at Scotland, Bon Homme county, being associated in the enterprise with Messrs. Wentzloff and Max, and after about one year he disposed of his interests there and returned to the farm, where he remained until 1885, when he again engaged in the hardware and farming implement business in Scotland, where he continued operations until 1892, when he sold out and engaged in the lumber business. His devoted wife died August 29, 1893, her maiden name having been Friedericka Mueller, and in the following year he disposed of his lumber business and removed to the state of Virginia, where he passed three years, since which time he has maintained his home in Scotland, South Dakota. He served for eight years as a member of the board of county commissioners of Hutchinson county, and has been incumbent of other offices of local trust.
Fred W. Schamber secured his rudimentary education in his native land, having been a lad of about fourteen years at the time of the family immigration to the United States. His father is a man of distinctive scholastic ability and had been a successful school teacher in Russia, so that after coming to South Dakota in the pioneer days, when educational advantages were chiefly notable for their absence, he was enabled to aid his children in carrying forward their studies, and through this effective home discipline the subject of this sketch rounded out his education. He remained associated with his father until 1884, when he became identified with the clothing business in Scotland, Bon Homme county, thus continuing until 1887, when he located in the village of Tripp, Hutchinson county, where he was successfully engaged in the hardware and agricultural implement business until 1889, when he disposed of his interests there and took up his residence in Eureka, McPherson county, where, in company with his brothers Julius, Emil, and Philip, he established himself in the same line of enterprise. In 1897 Emil and Philip withdrew from the firm and were succeeded by Christopher Hezel and Milburn Matthews and the new firm then opened the Eureka Bazaar. In the following year Mr. Matthews withdrew from the firm, and in January, 1904, Mr. Hezel retired, since which time the enterprise has been conducted by the subject and his brother Julius, while their establishment is a large and well-equipped department store, while the trade controlled is a representative one and wide in its ramifications. Julius Schamber is the active manager of this business, and with the subject is also associated in the ownership of the Golden Rule store, of which Mr. Hezel is manager and also a partner. The subject of this review now devotes the major portion of his time to his collection and loan business, having attractive offices in the building of the Bank of Eureka. In company with his brother Julius and Isadore Seitzick and W. G. Jacobs, Mr. Schamber is engaged in the manufacture of ladies wrappers, the factory being in Millville, New Jersey, and the enterprise proving a profitable one, its inception dating back to July, 1903, while all of the interested principals are residents of South Dakota. The subject and his brothers are the owners of a large amount of valuable real estate in McPherson county, including two thousand acres of valuable farming land, all of which is under cultivation or utilized for grazing purposes, while each of the brothers is the owner of a modern residence and has been successful in his business operations.
In politics Mr. Schamber gives his allegiance to the Republican party, and he has ever shown a deep interest in all that concerns the general welfare and progress. He served for two terms as justice of the peace, in 1892 was elected to represent McPherson county in the state legislature, while in 1898 he was elected to represent his district in the state senate, making an excellent record in both assemblies and proving himself a valuable working member of both bodies of the legislature. In 1899 he was chosen the chief executive of the municipal government of Eureka, serving as its mayor for two years and giving a business-like and progressive administration.
On the 13th of December, 1885, Mr. Schamber was united in marriage to Miss Matilda Hetzler, who was born in Missouri, being a daughter of Rev. Heinrich Hetzler, who was numbered among the pioneers of South Dakota. Mr. and Mrs. Schamber have two children: Edwin and Arthur.
PETER BARTH is a native of Washington county, Wisconsin, where he was born on the 6th of September, 1858, being a son of Matthias and Mary Barth, the latter of whom died in 1892. The father of the subject devoted the major portion of his active life to agricultural pursuits and is now living retired, making his home with his daughter, Mary, who is the wife of J. Simon, of Grafton, Wisconsin. He was a blacksmith by trade and followed this vocation for a number of years, and he has ever held the unqualified regard of those with whom he has come in contact in the various relations of life. He attained success in temporal affairs and is now enjoying the fruits of his many years of earnest toil and endeavor, having attained the venerable age of eighty-four years (1904). He has been a stanch Republican in politics ever since the organization, and has been for many years a zealous member of the Lutheran church, of which his wife likewise was a devoted member. They became the parents of twelve children, of whom seven are yet living, the subject of this review having been the sixth in order of birth.
Peter Barth was reared on the farm and from his boyhood up rendered quota of aid in connection with its work, he secured his educational training in the public schools of his native county, making the best use of the advantages thus afforded him. At the age of seventeen years he initiated his independent career, having been for two years employed as spiker on the Milwaukee & Northern Railroad, after which he located in Winnebago county, Illinois, where he was engaged in farming for the following three years. He then returned to Wisconsin and took up his residence in Rock county, where he continued to be identified with agricultural pursuits until the spring of 1884, when he came to what is now the state of South Dakota and purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land in Hancock township, Bon Homme county, the same having never been furrowed by the plowshare and being entirely without improvements. On the place he erected a small frame house and then bent his energies to the reclamation and improvement of his farm, which continues to be his abiding place, while the entire tract is under effective cultivation and yields excellent returns for the labor expended. Mr. Barth also raises excellent grades of livestock, giving preference to the Hampshire down sheep and Durham cattle, while on his place are also to be found good horses and swine raised by him. He is energetic and progressive, takes an active interest in public affairs of a local nature and is honored as a loyal and worthy citizen. In 1895 he erected his present commodious and substantial residence, and the other permanent improvements on the place are in harmony therewith. In politics he is not insistently partisan, but votes according to the dictates of his judgment, giving his support to those candidates whom he considers most eligible for the respective offices. He is not formally identified with any religious organization, but gives a liberal support to church work, his wife being a member of the Congregational church.
On the 4th of November, 1885, Mr. Barth led to the hymeneal altar Miss Frances Snow, who was born in Rock county, Wisconsin, being a daughter of Charles D. Snow, who is now one of the prominent and successful farmers of Bon Homme county. Mr. and Mrs. Barth have had four children: Charles, who died at the age of six months; Grace and Clifford who are attending the district school; and Willard who is three years of age at the time of this writing, in 1904.
WILLIAM J. ROBINSON. No better index of the material prosperity and general status of any community can be found than in its newspaper press, and in this respect South Dakota is favored in having ably conducted and progressive papers in its various cities and towns, the subject of this review being the editor and publisher of the Avon Clarion, at Avon, Bon Homme county, and having made his enterprise one of successful order as representative of the interests of the attractive town and its surrounding country. He is a thorough newspaper man and the Clarion maintains a high standard of excellence from both an editorial and mechanical standpoint, being a five-column quarto and being issued on Thursday of each week.
Mr. Robinson was born in Delaware county, Iowa, on the 14th of November, 1854, being a son of James and Mary A. (Gregg) Robinson, of whose twelve children he is the eldest of the nine surviving, a brief record concerning the others being here incorporated: Margaret is the wife of Christy Bleakly, of Galva, Iowa; Dr. Thomas is a practicing physician at Gallup, New Mexico; Robert R. is a prominent capitalist and promoter of Manchester, Iowa, and served for twelve years as auditor of Delaware county, that state; Eliza is the wife of Rev. James P. Perry, a clergyman of the Methodist Episcopal church; Alexander has charge of the old homestead farm in Delaware county, Iowa; John B. is a successful ranchman near Oakdale, Nebraska; Henry E. is a member of the Hollister Lumber Company of Manchester, Iowa, and is manager of its yards at Elkport, Illinois; and Gregg C. is likewise a member of that company and resides in Manchester, Iowa. The parents of the subject were both born in the north of Ireland, whence they came to the United States when young, their marriage having been solemnized in the city of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, in 1853. Immediately afterward they removed to Delaware county, Iowa, becoming pioneer settlers of that state, and there he invested his available cash in land, being able to buy only forty acres. James Robinson was a man of ability and had received excellent educational advantages for his day, having attended school in Pittsburg after coming to the United States and having been there reared in the home of his uncle, who took much interest in the young man. He had the prescience to recognize the possibilities in store for Delaware county through its agricultural development, and upon locating in Iowa in the early days he was able to secure land for about one dollar and a quarter an acre, and after securing his original tract he bent every energy to developing his property, investing every dollar which he could spare in adding to the area of his landed property and finally becoming the owner of ten quarter sections of the best land to be found in Delaware county, and how his faith has been justified needs no further voucher than to state that the land is now worth one hundred dollars or more per acre. He is now one of the substantial and successful citizens of the county, retaining possession of all the land which he has acquired while he still resides on the old homestead farm, being about eighty-five years of age and being one of the honored pioneers of the state. He has done much to assist his friends in a financial way and has contributed in large measure to the development and progress of Delaware county, where he is held in the highest confidence and esteem. While he has never sought political preferment he has been called upon to serve in the various local offices of trust and responsibility. He is a man of strong individuality and pronounced views and wields a marked influence in his community, while his inflexible integrity has gained to him the respect of all who know him. He is a stanch Republican in his political proclivities, and both he and his wife are consistent members of the Methodist Episcopal church. His ancestors were prominent in the early wars in which England was involved, representatives of the family having been with Cromwell in the battle of Waterloo, having been members of the Enniskillen Dragoons, one of the regiments held in reserve to combat Napoleon's life guards, whom they defeated in a fierce conflict.
William J. Robinson, the immediate subject of this sketch, was reared on the old homestead farm in Iowa, attending school during the winter months and assisting in the work of the farm during the summer seasons. In the autumn of 1869, when fifteen years of age, he was matriculated in the Upper Iowa University at Fayette, Iowa, where he continued his studies about five years, being there graduated as a member of the class of 1875, and having received from his alma mater the degrees of Bachelor and Master of Arts. The year prior to and that following his graduation he was employed as a teacher in the university, having full charge of the department of mathematics, in which science he excelled. After leaving the university he taught in the public schools of Iowa until 1889, when he took charge of a small college in Tennessee, but he was not pleased with the outlook and retained the incumbency only one year, at the expiration of which he came to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, and purchased a quarter section of land, in Albion precinct, where he was engaged in agricultural pursuits and stock growing until 1901, when he sold his property and purchased a quarter section in Sanborn county. In the autumn of 1902, he left the ranch and took up his abode in Avon, where he purchased the plant and business of the Clarion, which newspaper he has since conducted with marked ability and discrimination, making it one of the best county papers in the state. While residing on his ranch he devoted special attention to the live stock industry, leasing large tracts of land from the Indians and utilizing the same for the grazing grounds for his cattle. He is a man of high intellectuality and much business acumen, and the town of Avon is fortunate in having secured his interposition as editor and publisher of its local paper. In politics Mr. Robinson gives his allegiance to the Republican party, of whose interests his paper proves an effective exponent. In the autumn of 1894 he was elected superintendent of schools of Bon Homme county, and was returned to this office as his own successor in 1896, while in 1902 he was again a candidate for the position, but through a technicality several votes cast in his favor were thrown out, giving the victory to his opponent, who was elected by a majority of only two votes. Fraternally he is identified with Avon Tent, No. 66, Knights of the Maccabees.
On the 4th of August, 1875, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Robinson to Miss Emma E. Glasner, who was a fellow student at the University of Upper Iowa, her home being in Fayette, that state, and of this union have been born four sons: William L. and Robert R., who are editors and publishers of the Tyndall Tribune at Tyndall, this county; and Leon A. and Earl V., to whom their father will transfer the control of the Avon Clarion in the near future. On August 18, 1903, Mr. Robinson was appointed postmaster at Avon, which position he still holds.
JAMES H. STEPHENS, of Springfield, Bon Homme county, is a native of the state of Illinois, having been born in Jo Daviess county, on the 16th of September, 1850. He passed his boyhood days in his native county, where he attended the common schools, and he was about ten years of age at the time when the family removed to Wisconsin, where he continued to attend school until the age of fifteen years, when he entered upon an apprenticeship at the trade of harness making, becoming a skilled workman. He thereafter worked as a journeyman in various towns and subsequently came west to Sioux City, Iowa, remaining about one year and then returning east to the city of Chicago. In 1872 he came to Yankton, Dakota, where he remained one year, at the expiration of which he took up his residence in Springfield, where he opened a harness shop and also a furniture and undertaking establishment, becoming one of the pioneer merchants of the town, and he successfully continued his operations in the lines noted until 1897, when he disposed of his interests and has since lived practically retired, giving a general supervision to his capitalistic investments. His political support is given to the Republican party and, in 1878-9 he served as a member of the lower house of the territorial assembly, while in 1894 he was elected to represent his district in the state senate, being chosen as his own successor in 1896. Fraternally he holds membership in the Free and Accepted Masons; Yankton Chapter, No. 2, Royal Arch Masons, and Independent Order of Odd Fellows.
Mr. Stephens was married to Miss Emily A. Place, of Yankton, who died, being survived by three children, and subsequently Mr. Stephens consummated a second marriage, being then united to Miss Henrietta Hyatt, of Illinois, and they are the parents of three children.
JOHN BROWN, of Springfield, Bon Homme county, was born in Quebec, Canada, and was reared in the land of his birth and educated in the public schools of the same. When but a youth he left home and went to St. Lawrence county, New York, where he spent the two years following at various kinds of manual labor, and then accepted a position with the Fairbanks Scale Company, at St. Johnsbury, Vermont, and devoted the ensuing three years to mechanical work in their factory at that place, after which he went to Fond du Lac county, Wisconsin, where he was engaged in the lumber business.
Disposing of his business in the latter state, Mr. Brown moved to Iowa, where he purchased a farm and turned his attention to agriculture, and continued to reside there until he sold his possessions and changed his residence to Bon Homme county, South Dakota. On coming to this state he took up land in the vicinity of Springfield and from that time to the present has devoted his attention chiefly to farming and stock raising, in both of which his success has been most encouraging.
For a number of years Mr. Brown has had a contract with the government to furnish beef to the Indians and in addition to this and his agricultural and livestock interests he does a flourishing business as a coal dealer. Politically he is a Democrat, in religion a Catholic and his fraternal relations are with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
Dr. Christopher Vincent
CHRISTOPHER SNYDER VINCENT, M. D., successfully engaged in the practice of his profession at Wagner, Charles Mix county, was born on a farm in Coeymans township, near Indian Fields, Albany county, New York, on the 18th of March, 1845, and is a son of Asa S. and Hannah Maria (McClure) Vincent, both of whom were likewise born in Albany county, the lineage on the paternal side being of English origin and on the maternal of Scotch. The maternal great-grandfather of the Doctor was a clergyman of the Scotch Presbyterian church, and his son Daniel W., grandfather of our subject, was a local minister in the Methodist Episcopal church. Leonard Vincent, great-great-grandfather in the agnatic line, was an Englishman of means and immigrated to the state of New York while it was still an English colony. His eldest son, Leve, was born in that state, on the 1st of June, 1736, and the latter's eldest son, Amos, grandfather of the Doctor, was born about 1760. Asa S. Vincent, father of our subject, was born near Indian Fields, Albany county, New York, on the 14th of April, 1808, and it is interesting to note that the Doctor is the descendant of the oldest child and son in the line of five successive generations.
Dr. Vincent prepared for college in the Greenville Academy, New York, and was graduated in Hamilton College, at Clinton, that state, in 1873, receiving the degree of Bachelor of Arts, while in 1876 he received from his alma mater the degree of Master of Arts. In the meanwhile, at Turin, Lewis county, New York, on the 1st of April, 1874, he was ordained to the ministry of the Presbyterian church, being stated supply for the first six months thereafter and being then installed as pastor, retaining the incumbency two and one-half years. During his active labors in the ministry the Doctor held pastoral charges in Norwalk, Ohio; Baltimore, Maryland; Springfield, Ohio; Turner's Falls, Massachusetts; Williamstown, New York; Auburn, Nebraska; Joplin, Missouri; Oakes, Dakota; and Tyndall, South Dakota. He took up the study of medicine, and on the 2d of June, 1885, was graduated in the Medical College, in Cincinnati, Ohio, receiving his degree of Doctor of Medicine from this well known institution. He was engaged in the practice of his profession for a time in Springfield, Ohio and later at Dormansville, New York, while in 1897 he established himself in practice at Tyndall, Bon Homme county, South Dakota, where he remained for a period of six years, at the expiration of which he came to Wagner, Charles Mix county, where he has built up a large and representative practice. While he has always been successful in general practice and surgery he considers that his best work has been accomplished in connection with the treatment of chronic diseases, to which he has devoted special attention and study.
In politics the Doctor is a stanch Republican, and of his religious faith we can give no more consistent statement than to quote his own words: "I have been an ordained minister of the Presbyterian church since September, 1874, honoring alike all denominations as so many schools in the one universal church of Jesus Christ, and cherishing the hope that God in his wisdom will ultimately realize the universal salvation of all men and angels." In a fraternal way the Doctor is identified with Lodge No. 212 of the Ancient Order of United Workman at Auburn, Nebraska, and in 1868 he became a member of Jefferson Lodge No. 554, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, in New York, being at the present time affiliated with Bon Homme Lodge, No. 101, at Tyndall, South Dakota.
On the 23d of April, 1874, was solemnized the marriage of Dr. Vincent to Miss Ella Hammond, who was born in Auburn, New York, on the 3d of December, 1854, being a daughter of Colonel George Edmond and Hannah Maria (Harris) Hammond, and of the children of this union we enter the following brief record, the respective dates of birth being given in each connection: Wright A., March 1, 1875; Wheldon Jones, July 31, 1876; Maybelle, May 14, 1878; Edmond Hammond, June 28, 1881; Paul, August 31, 1884; and Faith, September 30, 1892.
GEORGE SPURRELL, one of the representative farmers and stockmen of Bon Homme county, is a native of the Hawkeye state, having been born in the city of Sabula, Jackson county, Iowa, on the 3d of January, 1855, and being a son of James and Eliza (Ward) Spurrell, both of whom were born and reared in England, where they were married and where four of their children were born. In 1854 they emigrated thence to the United States and located in Jackson county, Iowa, thence in 1855 removed to Clinton county, Iowa, where Mr. Spurrell became a prominent and successful farmer, being one of the honored pioneers of that section and one who wielded no little influence in the community. He continued to reside on the old homestead until he was summoned from the scene of life's endeavors, his death occurring on the 15th of May, 1900, at which time he was seventy-seven years of age. He was a Republican in his political proclivities, and was a consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal church, as is also his widow, who still resides on the old home farm. Of their six children we enter the following brief record: Anna died in childhood, before the removal of the family to America; Walter, who was a soldier in the Second Iowa Cavalry Regiment during the war of the Rebellion, died in 1901; John is a resident of Wall Lake, Sac county, Iowa; Arthur has the management of the old homestead farm in Iowa, and also owns six hundred and forty acres in South Dakota; George is the immediate subject of this sketch; and Ellen is married to Seth L. Collins, of Goose Lake, Iowa.
George Spurrell was reared to manhood on the home farm and secured his educational discipline in the excellent schools of Iowa. At the age of twenty-one years he initiated his independent career, becoming at that time dependent upon his own resources and he has worked his way to success through the medium of energy, industry, integrity of purpose and good management. He purchased one hundred and twenty acres of land in Sac county, Iowa, and was there engaged in farming for three years, after which he was engaged in the same line of enterprise in Plymouth county, that state, until 1891, when he sold his farm of one hundred and sixty acres and removed to Rock county, Minnesota, where he purchased land and also engaged in the real estate business, retaining his residence there about eighteen months. He then, in August, 1893, came to South Dakota and purchased a ranch of two hundred and forty acres in Springfield township, Bon Homme county, where he has since remained. He has made many improvements on the place, including the remodeling of the house, and the ranch is one of the most attractive and valuable properties in this section, being devoted to diversified agriculture and to the raising of excellent grades of livestock, including shorthorn cattle, sheep, swine, and horses. Mr. Spurrell is also the owner of two hundred and forty acres of land in Wilson county, Kansas, the same being located in the oil district, and this property he rents. He has owned property in several other states, and has traveled somewhat extensively, having visited various sections of the Rocky mountains and owning interests in the gold fields of Colorado. In politics Mr. Spurrell is a stanch advocate of the principles of the Republican party. While a resident of Iowa he served as justice of the peace, but he has never been ambitious for official preferment.
On the 8th of April, 1882, Mr. Spurrell was united in marriage to Miss Christine Kruser, of Wall Lake, Iowa. She was born and reared in Denmark, being a daughter of Maren and Peter P. Kruser, who emigrated to the United States in 1881, and who are now dead. Of the five children of Mr. and Mrs. Spurrell we enter the following brief data: Melvin J. died at the age of sixteen months; Marvin is at the parental home; Cora and Ida are attending the Springfield State Normal School; and Elmer J. is the youngest member of the family, being nine years of age at the time of this writing, and is also attending the Normal School. Mrs. Spurrell and Cora are members of the Congregational church.
CHARLES WEDDELL, an esteemed citizen of Bon Homme county, engaged in the pursuit of agriculture, was born in Aurora, Illinois, February 11, 1848. Andrew Weddell, his father, a native of Scotland, came to the United States when young and lived for some time in Cleveland, Ohio, where he worked at the blacksmith trade. He married in this country, Louisa, a native of England, and later they moved to Aurora, Illinois, where they both spent the remainder of their days, Andrew and Louisa Weddell were the parents of seven children, two of whom died in early childhood: those growing lo maturity were William; Abbie, now Mrs. Frank Campbell, of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Bell, Robert, and Charles, of which number Bell, William, and Robert are deceased.
The early life of Charles Weddell was spent in his native state and after receiving a good practical education in the public schools, he entered his father's shop to learn blacksmithing. On attaining his majority he left home and in 1870 came to Vermillion county, South Dakota, where in due time he became a driver on the Hedge Stage line, later accepting a similar position with Cheny & Haskall. While thus employed Mr. Weddell drove as far as Ft. Randall and other distant points, managing a four-horse team and a large stage, which carried both passengers and express matter, and his experiences during the seven years in which followed this kind of free outdoor life were interesting and at times thrilling and adventurous.
Resigning his position at the end of the period noted, Mr. Weddell entered the employ of the government at the Yankton agency and spent two years at that place, during the greater part of which time he rode the range and looked after the cattle and other live stock belonging to the post. At the expiration of his term of service he took up a claim of one hundred and sixty acres in Bon Homme county, the same on which he has since lived, and addressing himself to the task of its improvement, he soon had a goodly part of his land under cultivation, besides erecting substantial buildings and making a number of other improvements. His farm is now regarded one of the best in the township and as a tiller of the soil he has been uniformly successful, ranking at this time with the leading agriculturists in his part of the country. Like the great majority of progressive men throughout the west, he does not only rely entirely upon crops for his livelihood and income, but devotes a great deal of attention to livestock, raising cattle, good hogs and horses, being familiar with everything relating to the breeding and proper care of all kinds of domestic animals.
Although a man of domestic tastes and greatly attached to his family, Mr. Weddell has not been neglectful of his duties as a citizen nor of his obligations to the public. He manifests a lively interest in politics, voting the Republican ticket, but has never asked for office nor sought recognition as a party leader.
Mr. Weddell, in the year 1886, took to himself a wife and helpmate in the person of Miss Kate Quatier, a native of Germany, but of Russian descent, the marriage being blessed with seven sons, whose names in order of birth are as follows: Henry, Andrew, William, Charles, Joseph, John, and Benjamin, all living.
HON. GEORGE W. SNOW, of Springfield, Bon Homme county lieutenant governor of state of South Dakota, is a native of the state of Indiana, having been born in Posey county, the 13th of December, 1842. His father, Augustus F. Snow, was born in the city of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, on the 21st of March, 1816, and was a miller by trade and vocation, having been the owner of a flouring mill in Grant county, Wisconsin, at the time of his death, which occurred on the 13th of February, 1886. His wife, whose maiden name was Catherine M. Feit, was born in Baltimore, Maryland, on the 28th of July, 1819, and their marriage was solemnized on the 9th of April, 1837. She died near Montfort, Wisconsin, December 11, 1848. They became the parents of four sons, all of whom are dead except the subject of this sketch. The genealogy in both the paternal and maternal lines traces back to stanch German origin. Governor Snow was about two years of age at the time of his parents removal from Indiana to Wisconsin, in which state he was reared and educated, completing the curriculum of the common schools and a local academy and taking a thorough course in a commercial college in Madison, the capital of the state, in which institution he was graduated as a member of the class of 1866. The father of our subject located on a farm in Grant county, Wisconsin, at the time of taking up his residence there, in 1845, and in 1854 he engaged in the general merchandise business at Montfort, that county, where he remained until 1858, when he removed with his family to Beatrice, Nebraska, but returned to Grant county, Wisconsin, the next autumn and again resumed agricultural pursuits and milling. The subject of this review remained on the homestead farm until his father engaged in the mercantile business, when he became an assistant in the store, while after the return of the family to Grant county he aided in the work and management of the farm until there came the call to higher duty, the rebellion of the south having caused the tocsin of war to be sounded. In August, 1862, Mr. Snow enlisted as private in Company F, Twentieth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, for a term of "three years or until the close of the war." He continued in active service with his command until victory had crowned the Union arms, having been mustered out and having received his honorable discharge in August, 1865. He participated in several important and hotly contested battles, including that of Prairie Grove, Arkansas, and took part in the memorable sieges of Vicksburg, Spanish Fort and Mobile, being present at the capitulation of the last named city, while he was also with his command in numerous skirmishes and other minor engagements, proving himself a valiant and faithful soldier of the republic whose integrity he thus aided in perpetuating.
After the close of his military service Mr. Snow returned to Wisconsin and computed a course in a commercial college in Madison, as previously noted. Thereafter he was employed as clerk in a general store at Dodgeville, that state, until 1869, when he came as a pioneer to what is now the state of South Dakota, settling in Springfield, Bon Homme county, which was then a mere straggling frontier village, and here he has thus maintained his home for thirty-five years, being one of the pioneers of the town and state and having ever been loyal to both. Here he became identified with the operation of a sawmill and for a time was clerk in one of the first general stores in the town, while he availed himself of the opportunities which presented in connection with the development and material progress of the state, and soon found himself well advanced on the highway of definite and distinctive success. He began dealing in real estate in the early years of his residence here and largely through this medium has he gained independence and prosperity, while he is at the present time the owner of several thousand acres of valuable land in Bon Homme and adjoining counties. He has shown a public-spirited interest in all that has appertained to the civic and material advancement of his home town and has aided liberally in the support of all legitimate public enterprises, having been largely instrumental in securing the location of the State Normal School in Springfield. In politics he has given an unequivocal allegiance to the Republican party from his early manhood to the present time. He has served in various offices of public trust and responsibility, including that of justice of the peace, member of the board of education and county treasurer, to which last he was incumbent two terms of two years each. He was a member of the constitutional convention of 1885, while in 1890-1 he represented his district in the state senate, as did he again in 1897-8, and in 1901 he was elected lieutenant governor of the state, serving with signal ability and being chosen as his own successor in the election of November, 1903, so that he remains in tenure of this important office at the present time. Mr. Snow effected the organization of the Bank of Springfield in 1883, and is its principal stockholder, giving personal supervision to its management and being its president, while he is also a large stockholder in the Bank of Monroe, at Monroe, Nebraska. He still continues to deal extensively in real estate and controls a large amount of valuable realty, offering most attractive investments. He and his wife are attendants and supporters of the church of the Ascension, Protestant Episcopal, of which the latter is a communicant. Mr. Snow has been identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows since 1867, and is past grand master of the grand lodge of the order in the state, while he is at the present time grand treasurer. He has attained to the thirty-second degree in the Masonic fraternity, with which he has been identified since 1881, and is past grand treasurer of the grand lodge, while he is also past grand patron of the allied organization, the Order of the Eastern Star. He is one of the appreciative and honored members of General Steadman Post, No. 38, Grand Army of the Republic, and the hold which he has upon the esteem and confidence of his comrades in the same is significantly intimated in the fact that he has served as commander of the post for the past fourteen years, while during 1901-2 he had the notable distinction of being department commander of the order in South Dakota.
In Yankton, this state, in April, 1874, Mr. Snow was united in marriage to Miss Sylvia L. Tyler, who died in May, 1878, leaving one child, Harry, whose death occurred in the following August. In February, 1882, he consummated a second marriage, being then united to Mrs. Alberta M. Davison, nee Mead, and they have two sons, George G., who was born on the 4th of January, 1884, and who is a member of the class of 1903 in the celebrated University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, and Frank M., who was born on the 6th of August, 1888, and who is now student in the South Dakota State Normal School, in his home town.
ELMER W. MONFORE, a well-known and highly respected citizen of Springfield, Bon Homme county, was born in the town of Center Lisle, Broome county, New York, on the 18th of November, 1853, being a son of Peter and Diana A. (Howland) Monfore, of whose eight children seven are living, namely: Emerson J., who resides at Waverly, Kansas; Elmer W., who is the subject of this review; Cora A., who is the wife of Clark S. Rowe, of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Lana H., who is the wife of Alfred Burkholder, of that city; Alice A., who is the wife of Charles McBeth, of Mankato, Minnesota; Luna B., who is the wife of Professor Joseph W. Whiting, a member of the faculty of the normal school in Springfield, South Dakota; and Peter G., who is likewise a resident of this place.
The father of the subject was born in Delaware county, New York, in 1821, and in the old Empire state he learned the trade of miller. In 1865 he came west to Putnam county, Illinois, where he was engaged in farming for the ensuing three years, at the expiration of which he removed to Marion county, Iowa, where he remained about two years and then came to South Dakota, locating in Springfield, and he was thereafter employed for a number of years by the government as miller at the Santee Indian agency and later at the Ponca agency, after which he lived a retired life in Springfield until his death, which occurred in 1895. On coming here he took up homestead and tree culture claims, while at the time of his death he had recently disposed of three hundred and twenty acres of excellent land near Springfield. In politics he was a stanch Republican, and he was a man who ever commanded unqualified esteem. His wife was born in Broome county, New York, and is now living with a married daughter at Mankato, Minnesota.
Elmer W. Monfore was about twelve years of age at the time his parents came from New York to Illinois, and his early educational training was secured in the common schools and supplemented by a course in Bryant & Business College in Des Moines, Iowa. After coming to South Dakota he devoted his attention to farm work for about five years, and he was employed, for varying intervals, in the mercantile establishments of D. W. Currier, M. H. Day, and P. M. Liddy all of Springfield, the last mentioned having succeeded Mr. Day. In 1881 he engaged in business for himself, conducting a drug and grocery store here for two years, at the expiration of which, he admitted to partnership in the enterprise his cousin, Edward C. Monfore the firm title of E. W. Monfore & Company being adopted at that time. This partnership continued until January 1, 1903, when the firm disposed of the business, since which time our subject has had no active business associations. In politics he is a Republican and he has served as a member of the board of aldermen of Springfield and also as treasurer of the town and as a member of the board of education. He and his wife are valued members of the First Congregational church, and fraternally he is identified with Mount Zion Lodge, No. 6, Free and Accepted Masons; Scotland Chapter, No. 52, Royal Arch Masons; Springfield Lodge, No. 7, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and Deborah Lodge, No. 52, Daughters of Rebekah; Springfield Lodge, Knights of Pythias, and Springfield Chapter, No. 11, Order of the Eastern Star.
On the 16th of October, 1883, Mr. Monfore was united in marriage to Miss Emma R. Seccombe, of Springfield, and they became the parents of four children: Charles E. died February 6, 1904, Alberta A., Fred H., and Millicent L.
Rev. Calvin French
REV. CALVIN H. FRENCH, A. M., D. D., is a native of the old Buckeye state, having been born in Wellsville, Columbiana county, Ohio, on the 13th of June, 1862, and being a son of Rev. Charles P. and Mary J. (Brown) French. His father after serving as pastor of home mission churches in Virginia and spending some time in broken health at his own home in Washington county, Pennsylvania, removed to Grand Ridge, LaSalle county, Illinois when the subject was eight years of age. He there secured his early educational discipline in the public schools and later entered the high school at Streator, that state, where he was graduated as a member of the class of 1883. He was then matriculated in Lake Forest University, in the town of that name, and there completed the classical course and was graduated in 1888, with the degree of Bachelor of Arts, while his alma mater later conferred upon him the degree of Master of Arts. Dr. French early decided to prepare himself for the ministry of the Presbyterian church, and in 1888 entered the Union Theological Seminary, in New York city, where he completed his divinity course, being graduated as a member of the class of 1891 and licensed by the presbytery of Chicago in June of that year. In the autumn of the same year Dr. French came to South Dakota and was ordained by the presbytery of Southern Dakota and installed as pastor of the Presbyterian church at Scotland, Bon Homme county, where he remained until August, 1898, having also acted as principal of the Scotland Academy, a church institution, during the last year of his pastorate. In the year mentioned was effected a consolidation of Scotland Academy and Pierre University, and the outcome was the founding of Huron College. Upon the establishing of the new college Dr. French was made president of the same, and he has ever since continued incumbent of this important executive office, in which his work has been a noble and prolific contribution to the educational prestige of the state. In recognition of his high intellectual attainments and his prominence as an educator and representative member of the clergy of the Presbyterian church, the Wooster University, at Wooster, Ohio, conferred upon him in 1901, the degree of Doctor of Divinity. In politics the Doctor gives his allegiance to the Republican party, and he ever manifests a lively interest in the questions and issues of the hour.
On the 17th of July, 1897, was solemnized the marriage of Dr. French to Miss Anna E. Long, of College Springs, Page county, Iowa, and they have two sons, Robert C. and Ralph V.
From the bulletin of Huron College for 1904-5 we make the following historical excerpt: "The presbytery of Southern Dakota established Pierre University in 1883. The synod of Dakota was established in October, 1884, by order of the general assembly and assumed control of the college. With the division of the territory and the admission of the two states, the name of the controlling body was again changed, becoming now the synod of South Dakota. This was the name of both the ecclesiastical body and of the legal corporation until January, 1904, when the articles were amended and the corporate name of the institution changed to Huron College. Rev. Thomas M. Findley became the first president, serving two years. In 1885 Rev. William M. Blackburn, D. D., LL. D., succeeded to the presidency and continued in office until August, 1898. During these fifteen years the college did a noble and far reaching work. It aided in the classical training of twenty-nine young men for the gospel ministry, two of whom are now missionaries in distant foreign lands. Many more became teachers, while hundreds were sent out to become centers of helpful and uplifting influence in almost as many different communities. Scotland Academy was established by the presbytery of Southern Dakota in 1886. Of its students seven have entered the ministry, while more than eighty are known to have become teachers. Owing to unforeseen changes in the development of the state, the synod deemed it necessary to remove the college from Pierre. With the purpose of obtaining greater efficiency in the educational work of the church in this state, it was determined to consolidate the college and academy. Action to this end was taken at a special meeting of the synod held at Huron on June 2-3, 1898. The people of Huron, by public subscription, raised a sufficient amount of money to purchase and fit up a large and substantial four-story building, costing, at the time of erection, fifty thousand dollars. On account of advancing years and failing health Dr. Blackburn resigned the presidency in the summer of 1898, but remained in the faculty as president emeritus and professor until his death, in December, 1898. The college will long bear the impress of his life, and its growth and usefulness will be a lasting monument to his noble self sacrifice in its behalf. Rev. C. H. French became president of the college in August, 1898, and at once began the work of reorganizing and rebuilding on the new foundations. During the summer of 1902 a new impulse was given to the development of the college by the beginning of an effort to secure money for buildings and endowment. The Chicago & Northwestern Railway Company offered to donate for a campus four blocks of ground admirably located in the residence portion of the city. Subscriptions were taken in South Dakota and help was obtained from friends in the East. On December 31, 1903, a total sum of one hundred thousand dollars had been given or subscribed, of which thirty thousand or more will be available for use during the present summer (that of 1904). With this amount the new dormitory for girls will be completed and an artesian well will be secured and a central heating and lighting plant will be installed. The college is under the management of the Presbyterian synod of South Dakota. The synod elects the trustees, who are divided into three classes and serve three years each. They must not be less than five nor more than twenty-four in number, and two-thirds of them must be members of the Presbyterian church. This board of trustees appoints the faculty and administers all the affairs of the school."
It may be further said that the college is Presbyterian, but not sectarian, and that its curriculum and facilities are of the best, while its faculty has been selected with the utmost of discrimination. An excellent library and museum are maintained, a college paper published, and the student life is of enthusiastic and appreciative type. Four courses are offered in the college, leading up to the degree of Bachelor and Master of Arts, while there are also musical, academic, normal and commercial departments, each equipped for most effective work. The financial budget of the institution has increased from eight thousand dollars, in 1898-9, to eighteen thousand five hundred dollars in 1904. An endowment and building fund of one hundred thousand dollars was secured December 31, 1903. The building now occupied is valued at about twenty-five thousand dollars; the dormitory and heating and lighting plant, completed in the summer of 1904, represent an expenditure of thirty-five thousand dollars, and the campus, given by the railway company, on the 1st of September, 1904, is valued at twelve thousand dollars. The state, the church, the official board, the faculty and the students all have reason to take pride in Huron College and to be assured of its still brighter and more glorious future.
CHARLES C. KING is one of the representative citizens and honored business men of Scotland, Bon Homme county, where he has maintained his home since 1890, being president of the First National Bank of Scotland, succeeding the Bank of Scotland in 1903, one of the solid and popular monetary institutions of the state.
Charles Clark King is a native of the state of Illinois, having been born in the town of La Harpe, Hancock county, on the 7th of July, 1863, and being a son of Luranus F. and Laura (Andrews) King, both of whom were born and reared in Ohio, whence they removed to Illinois in an early day. In 1866 they removed to Polo, Ogle county, Illinois, the father there turning his attention to banking. The subject of this sketch secured his educational discipline of a preliminary sort in the public schools, being graduated in the high school at Polo, Illinois, as a member of the class of 1883. He then devoted one year to the reading of law, after which he was employed as a stenographer until 1887, when he removed to Duluth, Minnesota, and there engaged in the real estate and loan business. In the following year he went to the city of Boston, Massachusetts, where he remained for two years as representative of the American Loan & Trust Company, of Duluth, and at the expiration of this period, in May, 1890, he came to South Dakota and took up his residence in Scotland, where he has ever since maintained his home. He here purchased a controlling interest in the Bank of Scotland, of which institution he has ever since been president. He is known as a careful and conservative executive and able financier and has the confidence and esteem of those with whom he has come in contact in either business or social relations. In politics Mr. King is a stalwart advocate of the principles of the Republican party, in whose cause he has ever shown a zealous interest, though never a seeker of political preferment for himself. He served as a member of the state executive committee of his party during the campaign of 1900 and at the time of this writing he is chairman of the Republican central committee of his county. He has held no elective offices save that of treasurer of the school district, of which he is now incumbent. He and his wife are prominent and valued members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and fraternally he is an appreciative member of the Masonic order, in which he has attained to the thirty-second degree in the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, being affiliated with Oriental Consistory, No. 1, at Yankton, while he is also a member of the El Riad Temple of the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, in Sioux Falls.
On the 19th of February, 1896, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. King to Miss Delia Robinson, daughter of A. F. Robinson, a respected citizen of Dixon, Illinois. Mr. and Mrs. King have one son, Robert R., who was born on the 27th of October, 1900.
PHILIP PFALTZGRAFF - The name of the subject of this review indicates his foreign birth, also the part of the old world from which he came. Philip Pfaltzgraff was born November 28, 1852, in Alsace Loraine, at that time under the dominion of France, but now a part of the German empire, being the son of Frederick and Magdalena (Schnaberger) Pfaltzgraff, both parents natives of the same province. By occupation the father was a farmer, which trade he followed the greater part of his life, both in Germany and the United States. When a young man he entered the French army and devoted sixteen years to the military service, spending a part of the time as a member of the band, having been an accomplished musician, especially on his favorite instrument, the clarinet. Leaving the army, he resumed his trade and continued to work at the same in his native land until 1854, when he came to the United States and located in Rochester, New York. After spending two years at nursery work in that city, he removed to Cook county, Illinois, where he purchased land and devoted the ensuing fifteen years to agricultural pursuits, changing his abode at the expiration of that time to Butler county, Iowa, where he also developed a farm and continued to live the life of a contented and prosperous tiller of the soil for a period of eighteen years, dying in the town of Dumont on the 6th day of March, 1898. Mrs. Pfaltzgraff, who is still living at Dumont, Iowa, bore her husband seven children, the subject of this sketch being the oldest of the number. The others are George, a farmer of Butler county, Iowa; Fred, a hardware merchant in the town of Dumont; Jacob, who is engaged with his brother in the hardware business; Mrs. Elizabeth Schmitz, of Dumont; Lena, whose husband, Ernest Schmitz, is a general merchant in the above town; and Charlotte, who married William Ahrens, a grain dealer of the same place.
Philip Pfaltzgraff was but two years old when his parents came to this country, consequently he has no recollection of the land of his birth, being to all intents and purposes as much a citizen of the United States as if he had been born on American soil. During his youthful years he attended the district schools of Butler county and having been reared to agricultural pursuits he early became familiar with the rugged duties of the farm and grew up strong of body and with a well-defined purpose to make the most of his opportunities. Being the oldest of the family much of the labor of the homestead fell to him and he discharged the duty faithfully and well, working early and late in the fields and taking from his father's shoulders a great deal of the work and responsibility of running the farm. After remaining with his parents and looking after their interests until twenty-five years of age, he left home to make his own way in the world and in February, 1877, came to Bon Homme county, South Dakota, locating at the town of Loretta, where in due time he engaged in general merchandising.
Mr. Pfaltzgraff's business proved prosperous from the beginning and at this time he is proprietor of one of the largest and most successful mercantile establishments in the town, carrying a full stock of all articles demanded by the general trade, in addition to which he also handles all kinds of produce, which he ships in large quantities to the leading markets of the country. He has an extensive patronage, which is becoming larger every year and at this time the magnitude of his trade will compare favorably with that of any other merchant in the county outside the more populous centers.
Mr. Pfaltzgraff possesses supreme financial ability and has seldom if ever made any but fortunate investments. He owns fine town property, improved and well cared for, and in addition thereto has purchased from time to time valuable farm lands in different parts of the county, including the Henry Tjark place of eighty acres and a quarter section in Jefferson township, half of which is in cultivation. He leases the latter tract, but cultivates his eighty acre farm, raising large crops of wheat, oats, and corn, besides devoting considerable attention to livestock, specially to a fine grade of hogs, in the raising of which he has been quite successful and the proceeds from which add very materially to his income. Mr. Pfaltzgraff has been postmaster at Loretta for over twelve years and manages the office with the same care and consideration manifested in his individual business affairs. He maintains an abiding interest in the growth and development of the town, encouraging all measures for the general good of the community and welfare of the people.
Politically he wields a potent influence for the Republican party, the principles of which he has advocated ever since old enough to exercise the right of ballot, and fraternally holds membership with the Odd Fellows lodge in Dumont, Iowa. He has profound religious convictions and is a firm believer in the truths of the German Lutheran church, with which he has been identified since childhood.
The married life of Mr. Pfaltzgraff dates from 1870, in September of which year he was wedded to Miss Anna Miller, of Dumont, Iowa, who has borne him two children, a daughter by the name of Dora M. and a son George W., both of whom reside under the parental roof.
REIN TALSMA, one of the successful and prominent farmers of Bon Homme county, was born in Friensland, Holland, on the 8th of November, 1846, and is a son of Mattheus and Reintje Talsma, the former of whom passed his entire life in Holland, where he was a gardener by vocation, while the latter came to the United States in 1870 and located in Sioux county, Iowa, where she passed the remainder of her life, her death occurring in 1879. Of the five children in the family the subject of this review was the second in order of birth, while of the number all are living except two. The subject was reared to maturity in his native land, where he was afforded the advantages of the excellent national schools, after which he was engaged in carpentry until he had attained the age of twenty-two years, when, in 1868 he immigrated to America, believing that here were to be found superior opportunities for the attaining of definite success through individual effort. He had learned the trade of carpenter in Holland, and upon coming to the United States he located in Marion county, Iowa, where he followed his trade and worked on farms for the ensuing six years. At the expiration of this period, in 1874, he came as a pioneer to South Dakota, being thus numbered among those who initiated the strenuous work of development and civic progress. He made the overland journey with a wagon and team of horses and two yoke of oxen, being thus better prepared to take up the work of reclaiming new land than was the average pioneer of the period. He took up three hundred and twenty acres of government land in township 93, Bon Homme county, the tract being entirely wild, and soon after his arrival he completed the erection of a sod house of the primitive type, and he then set himself vigorously to the work of placing his land under cultivation, while during the long intervening years he has developed one of the valuable farms of the county and made the best permanent improvements on the same, the erection of his present handsome and commodious residence in 1899, while about the home is found a well matured grove of trees, all of which were planted and nurtured by himself.
On the 26th of May, 1873, Mr. Talsma was united in marriage to Miss Grietje Ferwerda. who was born and reared in Holland. whence she came to America in 1873, their marriage being solemnized in the state of Iowa. The great loss and bereavement of Mr. Talsma's life came on the last of April, 1901, when his loved companion was summoned into eternal rest, at the age of forty-nine years. They became the parents of twelve children, all of whom are living except two, the names being here entered in order of birth: Reina, John, Bertha, Winnie (died at the age of five years), Matthew, Fred (a son who died in infancy), Winnie (2nd), Katie, Fred (2nd), Lucretia, Margaret, and Clarence.
MRS. ATLANTA H. KING - The life of this estimable lady illustrates very forcibly the fact that under certain conditions women may succeed as well as men in conducting the stern practical affairs of life and achieve as great success as their brothers in a domain which from time immemorial has been considered the latter's special province. Atlanta Smith, daughter of David and Samantha (Warner) Smith, was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and spent the first eleven years of her life in that city, being left an orphan at that age, after which she became an inmate of her grandmother's home. She accompanied the latter to Illinois, where she lived three years, attending school the meanwhile and at the expiration of that time, went to Iowa, thence after one year to Albert Lea, Minnesota, where she made her home for several succeeding years and where she also met a gentleman by the name of William Robinson, who subsequently became her husband.
Mr. Robinson owned a ranch near the town of Albert Lea, and it was on this place that the subject spent the first seven years of her wedded life. In the spring of 1867 the couple disposed of their interests in Minnesota and with a party of friends and acquaintances came to Dakota territory and took up land near the little town of Bon Homme, twenty miles from Yankton, building their house on the bank of the Missouri river. Mr. Robinson developed a farm and in the matter of cultivating the soil was ably assisted by his wife, who assisted in the work of the fields when not attending to the domestic duties of the household. Mrs. Robinson lived about fifteen years on the Missouri, where she originally settled, during which time she was left a widow and later she entered the marriage relation with James F. King, a well known farmer and stock raiser of eastern Dakota, the nuptials being celebrated in the month of October, 1880.
In the spring of 1882 Mr. and Mrs. King moved to the Black Hills and purchased a ranch on Squaw creek, one and a half miles from Hermosa, at once began the work of its improvement. Mr. King was an industrious, hard working man, a good manager and he soon reduced the greater part of his land to cultivation and had it well stocked with cattle and other domestic animals. He conducted his affairs quite successfully, accumulated a comfortable competency and became widely and favorably known as an energetic business man and upright, law-abiding citizen. He was machinist and mining engineer by profession and served the government several years on Indian reservations. While in Bon Homme county he served as sheriff one term. He departed this life on October 13, 1890, from which time until a recent date, his widow managed the ranch, conducted the business affairs of the same, reared her family and provided for their intellectual training as well as for their material support, giving them the best educational advantages obtainable. As her oldest son by her first marriage, Eli C. Robinson, grew to maturity he gradually assumed the burdens and responsibilities of the place, and being intelligent and naturally inclined to business, he soon grasped the details of cattle raising and at this time is one of the most enterprising and progressive live stock men in his part of the county.
Mrs. King deserves great credit for the business like manner in which she managed the ranch and looked after the varied interests of her children, all of whom acknowledge their great indebtedness to her for her untiring activity in their behalf. By her second marriage she had two children, a son, James B., and a daughter by the name of Pearl. Mrs. King's first marriage was blessed with four children, namely: Mrs. Emily Beadle, Mrs. Etna M. Beach, Eli C., a successful livestock man residing on Spring creek, and Mrs. Lennie L. Beatty, all living in South Dakota and greatly esteemed in their respective communities.
WILLIAM VOLL is a native of Russia, where his birth occurred on June 1, 1852. He grew to manhood in his native land and was raised on a farm, his father having been an honest, industrious tiller of the soil. In 1872 he came to America and, proceeding direct to South Dakota, took up a quarter section of land in Bon Homme county, later purchasing an additional tract of four hundred and eighty acres, only a small part of which was improved when he took possession. Subsequently he disposed of his interests there and changed his abode to Hutchinson county, purchasing what was known as the Bechtold place, a fine tract of land, on which he has made many substantial improvements, converting it into one of the most productive and valuable farms in the community. Mr. Voll served four years as school director, besides filling other local offices, and as a Republican he wields a strong influence for his party. In addition to farming and stock raising Mr. Voll is an enthusiastic horticulturist and for a number of years he has devoted much attention to this interesting and fascinating pursuit, and now has one of the finest orchards in the county.
The subject was married to Miss Rosenia Link, like himself a native of Russia, and the union has been blessed with a family of thirteen children.
Rev. J. R. Higgins
REV. J.R. HIGGINS, the able and popular priest in charge of St. Rose church and parish in the attractive village of Montrose, McCook county, is a native of the fair Emerald Isle, though he has passed practically his entire life in America. He was born in County Sligo, Ireland, and his parents emigrated to the United States when he was a child of four years. They located in the city of New York, in the parish of historic old St Michael's church, and there the subject passed his youthful days. He secured his preliminary educational discipline in the parish school of St Michael's church, and after completing the prescribed curriculum he entered St. Francis Xavier College, in the city of New York, in which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1883. He then completed his philosophical and theological courses in Dominican colleges in Kentucky and Ohio, and then was ordained to the priesthood. After his reception of holy orders Father Higgins initiated the active work of his sacred calling by serving as a missionary priest in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Minnesota. While residing in the last mentioned state he made a lecture tour through South Dakota, and incidentally he became favorably impressed with the state as a desirable field for his work, and he determined to locate here providing the necessary permission could be secured from the church authorities. He was granted his desire, and became a member of this diocese, being first assigned to pastoral work in Bon Homme county, where he labored until 1903, when he was assigned to his present charge as rector of St. Rose church in Montrose, where he has gained the affectionate regard and hearty co-operation of the members of his parish, into whose work he is infusing zeal and vitality, while his gracious personality and tolerance have gained to him distinctive popularity in his new field of labor.
LOUIS LaPLANTE - A consistent and valuable prerogative is exercised by a compilation of this nature when it enters a resume of the life history of so honored and prominent a pioneer as he whose name initiates this paragraph. Whatever there is represented in the perilous and stirring life which marked the life on the frontier is known to the subject by personal experience in the days long since past, and then, as in the later era of development and civic and industrial progress, he played well his part, proving himself a man of courage, self reliance and utmost integrity of purpose.
Mr. LaPlante comes of sterling French lineage, as the name implies, and is a native of the province of Quebec, Canada, where he was born on the 11th of November, 1835, being a son of Louis and Sophia (Morran) LaPlante, both of whom were likewise born and reared in that province, the paternal grandfather, who also bore the patronymic of Louis, having been a seafaring man, as was also the father of the subject. He who was later to become a pioneer of South Dakota received somewhat limited educational advantages in his boyhood, and early became dependent upon his own resources. At the early age of ten years he became identified with the vocation followed by his father and grandfather, going to sea and continuing as a sailor before the mast for the ensuing seven years, within which time he visited the principal maritime ports in England, France, Germany, Wales and America. In 1852 he arrived in the city of New Orleans, Louisiana, where he secured employment in connection with steamboat navigation on the Mississippi river, being thus engaged for two years, after which he turned his attention to coal mining on the Ohio river. In a short time he found himself afflicted with the all-prevailing ague, and consequently returned to St. Louis, and after a trip to New Orleans, came back to the former city and there shipped on the steamer "St. Mary," plying the upper Missouri river. On this little vessel he came up the river as far as the mouth of the White river, in what is now South Dakota, this being then the head of navigation, and thence the government sup plies with which the boat was laden were freighted through with teams to old Fort Pierre, where Mr. LaPlante put in his first appearance on the 11th of November, 1855, his twentieth birthday anniversary. He passed the winter at Camp Pierre, on the opposite side of the river, Major Galpin being in charge of the camp, and in the following spring, in company with seven other men, started down the river with supplies, the same being transported with mule teams. The party became disaffected because the supply train had been placed in charge of an unpopular man, instead of Charles Picotte, who had been the choice of the men, and they accordingly left the supply train at the mouth of White river, their principal objection to service in the connection being that they were reluctant to work under military rules and supervision. The eight men took a small supply of necessary provisions and made their way back to Fort Pierre on foot, where they were taken prisoners and courtmartialed, all being ordered out of the country. On their way up the river they found a soldier who had deserted from Fort Pierre with two others. The three deserters had lost their way and two of them died from lack of food and from exposure, while the survivor was found in a fearfully demented condition, having entirely eaten the body of one of his companions, and partially consumed the other. He was taken back to the fort and placed in charge of the authorities, and in the following summer was sent down the river to St. Louis. When ordered to leave the country each of the eight men agreed to do so with the exception of a half-breed Indian, who told Colonel Harney, commanding the post, that he had a natural right to the country and would remain. He brought into play a knife, with which he attempted an attack on the colonel, but was disarmed. He was permitted to remain, this provision being a part of the treaty made by the Indians with Colonel (later General) Harney, in 1856. Seven of the men then proceeded down the river, but the adventurous spirit of Mr. LaPlante led him to escape surveillance and make his way up the river to Fort Clark, where he entered the employ of the American Fur Company, with which he remained engaged until it disposed of its business about 1859. He then became an employee of the company's successors, the firm of Frost, Tudd & Atkins, and was in their service until 1861, when Mr. LaPlante engaged in trapping on his own account. In the summer of 1863 he entered the employ of the government at Fort Randall, which was then in command of General Cook, who had relieved General Sully, and passed the summer in carrying dispatches between that post and Fort Sully. In the summer of 1864 he was engaged in scouting duty for General Sully, having become by this time familiar with the country and with the habits and maneuvers of the crafty Indians, while his daring and courage led him to risk the many dangers involved in the service in which he was engaged. He followed scouting during that summer and then engaged in business on his own account, trading with the Indians and raising horses and cattle. His ranch was located in Bon Homme county and there he continued to reside until 1875, when he removed to Fort Pierre, where he established his home, while he has ever since been engaged in stock raising, his ranch being located on the Cheyenne river, sixty-five miles west of Fort Pierre, and comprising one thousand eight hundred acres, in Stanley county, while he also uses the open range and conducts his operations on an extensive scale. When the Black Hills district was opened to settlement he engaged in freighting between Fort Pierre and Deadwood, in which enterprise he successfully continued until the year 1883. He gives special attention to the raising of Hereford and shorthorn cattle and Percheron and French coach horses. Mr. LaPlante is a man of broad and varied experience and strong mentality, well informed and genial and courteous in his relations with his fellow men. Though he has nearly attained the age of three score years and ten he enjoys perfect physical health and is a worthy type of the sturdy and valorous frontiermen who aided in ushering in the era of civilization and progress, while his integrity has ever commanded to him the respect and confidence of those with whom he has come in contact. He is a pioneer of pioneers, and it is most consonant that he be accorded marked precedence in this publication. His elder sons, two of whom are individually mentioned on other pages of this work, are also numbered among the progressive and successful stock growers of the state, being likewise located on a reservation, while all of his children have been accorded excellent educational advantages and have honored the name which they bear and the state in which their entire lives have been passed. The two eldest sons have attained the thirty-second degree in Scottish rite Masonry, and the subject himself is a Royal Arch Mason, while he is also affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He is a stanch Democrat in politics, and upon the organization of Stanley county was elected a member of its first board of commissioners, serving one term, while for two years he was a member of the village council of Fort Pierre.
In March, 1860, Mr. LaPlante was united in marriage to Miss Julia Abbott, who was born and reared in Fort George, South Dakota, being a daughter of Mr. Abbott, of the firm of Abbott & Cotton, who were engaged in the fur business in this section in the early days, having their headquarters in the city of New York, while their trading post was at the mouth of the Medicine river, in Pratt county, South Dakota. Mr. and Mrs. LaPlante have six sons, namely: Frederick, George, Alexander, Charles, Louis Jr., and Ovila.
JAMES GURNAL JONES, one of the pioneers of Charles Mix county, is a native of the old Empire state of the Union, having been born on a farm in Oneida county, New York, on the 21st of April, 1851, a son of William J. and Ann (Wheldon) Jones. The grandparents of the subject were born in Wales, whence they emigrated to the United States about the year 1812, locating in the state of New York, where they passed the remainder of their lives. The father of our subject was born in Oneida county, New York, and became a prominent farmer near Utica, Oneida county, where he died in 1877. James G. Jones received his early educational discipline in the common schools and in an academy at Rome, New York, while he has ever been a wide reader and student of affairs, and is a man of broad and exact information, having supplemented his early training by systematic personal application. He continued to assist in the work of the home farm until he had attained the age of sixteen years, when in 1867, he gave rein to his spirit of adventure and came to the west, passing five years in Texas and the Indian territory and gaining much experience in regard to life on the frontier. In 1873 he came to what is now the state of South Dakota and settled in Charles Mix county. In 1879, when the county was organized, Governor Howard appointed Mr. Jones county commissioner, while in the first popular election, in the fall of the same year, he was elected register of deeds of the county. He was re-elected in 1880, serving for a total of three years, as the first incumbent of this office. Four years later he was chosen representative of his county in the first constitutional convention of the south half of the territory of Dakota, but declined to serve, said convention having been held at Sioux Falls. In 1887 he was elected a member of the territorial legislature, serving with marked ability and being chosen as his own successor two years later. Prior to the organization of Charles Mix county Mr. Jones and Major Thad S. Clarkson, ex-commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, were rival candidates for the territorial legislature, and the vote proved to be a tie. Under these conditions Brule county, which gave Mr. Jones a majority, was conveniently thrown out on a technical pretext and his defeat was thus compassed, this being in the year 1876.
The subject was a stanch supporter of the Republican party, until the organization of the Populist party when he transferred his allegiance to the same, and he has ever since been one of the ablest and most enthusiastic advocates of its cause in the state, while he has been an effective worker in the promotion of its interests. In 1893 Mr. Jones was the nominee of his party for the state senate, but met defeat by a narrow margin. In 1896 he was elected enrolling and engrossing clerk of the house of representatives. In 1898 he was again the nominee of his party for the state senate, and at this time a gratifying majority was rolled up in his favor, and he proved an able and valued member of this body. In 1900 he was one of the delegates-at-large from this state to the People's party national convention, at Sioux Falls, which nominated Bryan for the presidency and Towne for the vice-presidency. Mr. Jones is a man of strong individuality and marked intellectuality, being a close student of the political and economic questions of the hour and being ever fortified in his convictions. He is the owner of a fine landed estate of three hundred and twenty acres, in the Missouri valley district of the county, and is one of the successful farmers and stock growers of this section. Fraternally he is identified with Doric Lodge, No. 93, Free and Accepted Masons, at Platte, which village is fourteen miles distant from his fine farm home.
On the 15th of July, 1877, Mr. Jones was united in marriage to Miss Winifred Mulleague, who was born in County Roscommon, Ireland, whence she came to America at the age of thirteen years and established her home with her brothers and sisters in Bon Homme county, South Dakota, where she was reared to maturity. As before noted, she was the first white woman to settle in Charles Mix county, where she resided almost two years with her husband without seeing a person of her sex and race, and her eldest child was the first white child born in the county. Mr. and Mrs. Jones are the parents of eight children, all of whom have been accorded the best possible educational advantages, their names, in order of birth, being as follows: Whitfield, William James, Mary Laura, Gordon Gurnal, Winifred Ann, Roscoe Conkling, Francis, Wheldon, and Emma Lela. Four of the children are successful and popular teachers in the public schools of the county, namely: Whitfield, Mary L., Gordon G., and William J.
EDWIN M. RADWAY, who is now living retired in Springfield, Bon Homme county, is a native of the old Empire state, born in Cortland county, New York. He received his educational training in the schools of his native state, and was twenty years of age at the time of his parents' removal to Wisconsin, where he assisted in the development of the pioneer farm, remaining at the parental home until he had attained the age of thirty years, though in the meanwhile he had been absent two years or more, since in 1852 he joined the throng of argonauts making their way to the gold fields of California. He remained in the Golden state about two years, and then returned to his home in Wisconsin, making the trip by way of the Nicarauga route. In 1864 he again went to California, and after remaining a short time he returned by way of the isthmus of Panama. After his second return to Wisconsin Mr. Radway was engaged in farming, but he disposed of his interests there and came to South Dakota and took up government land in Bon Homme county, where he has thus made his home for thirty years. There were but few settlers in the county at the time and the land was practically all in its primitive condition. He began the development of his claim, and to his original claim Mr. Radway added from time to time until he had accumulated three hundred and twenty acres, while he made the best of improvements on the place, including the erection of a fine residence, good barns, etc., while he set out an orchard and planted many trees, so that the place is now one of the best in the county. Mr. Radway rented the farm and removed to Springfield, in order to afford his children better educational advantages, and in 1901 he disposed of the home ranch and purchased a large and handsome residence in Springfield, where he is now living retired, also owning other town property. In politics he maintains an independent attitude, and has ever been a liberal and public-spirited citizen.
Mr, Radway was united in marriage to Miss Christine I. Fellows, and they have two children.