KANSAS COLLECTION BOOKS


Andreas' History of the State of Nebraska
Saline County
Produced by Alice Vosika.



PART 1:


Location and Physical Features | Primitive Occupants
The First Settler | Indian Depredations | Pioneer Events
Organization

PART 2:


County Seat Contest | Burning of the Jail | Court House
Legislative Representation | Statistical | The Press
Criminal | Schools | Railroads
PART 3:
Crete:   Early History | Doane College | Religious
PART 4:


Crete (cont.):   Schools | Crete Public Library | The Press
Secret Orders | Business Interests
Manufacturing Interests | Opera House
PART 5:
Crete (cont.):   Biographical Sketches
PART 6:
Crete (cont.):   Biographical Sketches [cont.]
PART 7:


Wilber:   Early History | Banks | Manufactories | Schools
Religious | Secret Societies | The Press
Biographical Sketches

PART 8:

Wilber:   Biographical Sketches [cont.]
South Fork Precinct. [Biographical Sketch]

PART 9:
DeWitt:   Local Matters | Biographical Sketches
PART 10:

Dorchester:   Early History | Local Matters
Biographical Sketches

PART 11:





Friend:   Early History | Banks -- Schools and Churches
Societies | Newspaper | Biographical Sketches
Pleasant Hill:   Biographical Sketches
Swan City | Western | Atlanta Precinct [Biographical Sketch]

List of Illustrations in Saline County Chapter


PART 11


FRIEND.

The thriving town of Friend, frequently also known as Friendville, is pleasantly situated in the northwestern part of Saline County, on the line of the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad, in Nebraska. It is on the high and rolling upland prairies, about midway between Turkey and Johnson creeks. At an early period in its history trees were planted on most of the residence lots. They have already attained sufficient size to afford a shade, and give the town the appearance of being made up of numerous small groves.

The population of Friend is upward of 900, and is fast increasing. The people are of different nationalities, but the greater number are American born citizens. The different branches of business are well represented, and among the business houses are some fine large structures of brick.

Friend is in the center of a thickly settled and very productive region, thus insuring prosperity to the business interests of the town.

EARLY HISTORY.

The railroad was completed through the present village of Friend in the year 1871, but it was some time before a town was projected.

The original survey of the town site was made in November, 1873. The town was located on the farm of Charles E. Friend, and consisted of a little upward of fifty-six acres, and was laid out on a square containing sixteen blocks.

C. E. Friend located on what is now the town site, in the year 1870, and in May, 1871, opened a store in what is the western limits of the present town. During the following month, a post office was established, and C. E. Friend appointed Postmaster.

In November, 1871, E. Whitcomb opened a store on his farm, a little east of the present town.

The above were the only business houses opened until after the survey of the town. In the summer of 1873, arrangements had been made with the railroad company for a railroad station here. Consequently work was commenced on a depot, which was completed in August, 1873. In October of the same year, Charles Bigford erected a blacksmith shop not far from the depot. In November following, Charles E. Friend and E. Whitcomb moved their stores to a point near the center of the newly surveyed town site. In order to secure the co-operation of the railroad company, C. E. Friend deeded to the railroad town company, three-fourths of the original town site.

During the fall of 1873, and until the summer of 1874, the new town attracted considerable attention. A large number of lots had been sold. In October, 1873, Charles Fisher built a small one story hotel, which is now a shed to the Commercial house. In January, 1874, E. Slagg removed his store from Turkey Creek, and put in a stock of hardware. In April, Joseph Sanders began work on the large hotel now known as the Sanders House, but this was not completed and opened to the public, until January, 1875. In August, 1874, L. E. Southwick opened a lumber yard.

The town of Friend had been started with bright prospects before it, having already a well settled country around it. But in the summer of 1874, the grasshoppers made an appearance and entirely ruined all the crops, with the exception of the earlier fields of small grain. Now the growth of Friend came to a standstill. In 1873 the sale of lots had started in at $50 each, but now they could be easily purchased for $25.

The first marriage took place April 7, 1872, and was that of Charles E. Friend to Miss Wellmina B. Olmstead, the bride being only fourteen years of age. The first marriage after the town was surveyed was that of Richard Kiddle and Mrs. Carrie Harris, in 1874. The ceremony was performed by Hon. E. Whitcomb.

The first birth ws that of J. Mortimer Friend, son of Mr. and Mrs. Charles E. Friend, and took place January 2, 1882.

The first sermon was preached at the store of C. E. Friend, by Rev. William Kelso, some time before the town was surveyed. In August, 1873, when the new depot was completed, the event was celebrated by a meeting there, Rev. William Cooley officiating as the minister.

The first school on the town site was taught in the fall of 1874, by Miss Sadie Mosier.

In 1876, the village began again to grow, and since that time its progress has been steady, marked by no extraordinary events. And now Friend may be considered one of the most enterprising towns in this part of the State.

The only manufactures in the town is a cheese factory, which was erected in the spring of 1881, by D. L. Fletcher. This has proven a profitable investment for the proprietor, and he makes a good quality of cheese.

Turkey Creek, about three miles south of Friend, affords an excellent water power, and flouring mills have already been erected.

BANKS.

The Exchange Bank was founded on Jannary l, 1879, and has a capital of $10,000. L. E. Southwick is proprietor.

The Bank of Friendville was established November l, 1881, by J. D. Stone. The business of this bank is constantly increasing, and Mr. Stone contemplates forming a national bank soon.

The Merchants and Farmers' Bank was established in the summer of 1882, by George F. Sawyer, Robert Connor, J. S. Ferguson and others. It starts out with good prospects.

SCHOOLS AND CHURCHES.

The public school is well conducted, by able and experienced instructors. The schoolhouse, built in 1874, has been found too small, and a large brick structure is in progress. When completed, its estimated cost is $5,000. The main part is 55x50 feet in size, with a wing 24x36 feet. The building is two stories high, and will contain four large rooms and five smaller ones. The school is now composed of three departments, but more will soon be added.

The different church societies are represented by the Methodist Episcopal, Congregational, Catholic, Episcopal and Baptist denominations, each of which has an organization. The three first named have very fine church buildings. All religious institutions are well supported by the enterprising citizens.

SOCIETIES.

The Lodge of Independent Order of Odd Fellows, organized August 19, 1878, and has a membership of forty-five. It is enjoying great prosperity, and has quite a large sum of money ahead, which is loaned out.

Friendville Lodge, A., F. & A. M., was organized in July, 1878. It is in a prosperous condition, and has about forty members.

The Independent Order of Good Templars was organized in 1879. It has had many difficulties to contend with, but now has about sixty members, and is in good condition.

Friend has also a Psychological Society, which attracts considerable attention. It has about forty members, and meetings are held each week.

In the matter of societies, Friend may also be said to have taken the leading part in organizing a District Agricultural Society, comprising the counties of Saline, Fillmore, York and Seward. The society was organized in June, 1882, and Friend designated as the place of holding the fair, and the officers elected were: F. M. Patten, President; J. Warren, Secretary; with a vice-president from each county.

NEWSPAPER.

There is one newspaper published here, the Friendville Telegraph published by E. Whitcomb. The beginning of the newspaper history in Friend, was in February, 1877, when W. A. Connell started the Advocate. In August, it was sold to Wells & Allen, who changed the name to the Telegraph. After having a number of editors, E. Whitcomb took charge of it, on June 1, 1882. It is a bright and newsy paper, Republican in politics.

Friend was incorporated as a town June 19, 1882. The following named citizens were appointed trustees: L. E. Southwick, J. O. Frantz, H. M. Smith, W. H. Proudfit and J. V. Ainsworth.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES.

Z. L. BASS, dealer in agricultural implements of all kinds, carrying a stock of about $6,000. He opened the business in the spring of 1878. He first bought 400 acres of railroad land in Section 19, Town 8, Range 1 West, 300 acres of which is now under cultivation, with a fine lot of timber, orchard and many varieties of small fruit. Its location is two and a half miles southeast of the village; resides on his farm. He is a member of the Masonic Order. He was born Rensselaer County, N. Y., October 23, 1846, and lived in his native State until he came to Nebraska. He married in Friendville in 1879 to Miss Mary Bridgeford of Canada West. He has two children-- Frank and Florence Eva. Frank is a son by a former marriage. Mr. Bass is quite largely interested in the raising of fine grades of cattle. He has now a good herd, besides a good stock of horses, hogs, etc.; is also quite largely interested in real estate in the village.

JACOB BRIEMER, was born near Clinton, N. J., in 1850. When but a child he removed to Illinois, settling first in Fulton County, and afterward in McDonough County, in which place he remained eighteen years, engaged the most of the time in farming. In 1872 he removed to Seward County and followed farming until 1876, when he removed to Friend, and was Principal of the public school. Afterward engaged in the grocery trade for two years. In 1880 he engaged in real estate and loan business with L. H. Page. He married in 1875 in Seward County, Neb., to Ella Harris. They have one child, Forence Maple.

T. C. CALLAHAN, of the firm of McDougal & Callahan, dealer in general line of hardware; opened the business in 1877. He came to Friend in 1874, and engaged in contracting and building. He then went into the lumber and livestock business, and finally into the present trade and since continued. He was born in Kenosha County, Wis., August 17, 1853; lived in Wisconsin until 1863, then moved to Lake County, Ill., and at the proper age served an apprenticeship at the carpenter trade. He moved to Columbus, Neb., where he worked a year. He married in October, 1876, to Miss Carrie A. Sanders of Benton, Lake Co., Ill. They have one daughter, Mable A. He is a member of the Masonic Order.

J. W. DORWART, M. D., Coroner of Saline County, Friend, Neb., was born in New Lisbon, Columbiana Co., Ohio, in 1840, remaining there until 1851, when his father moved to Lisbon, Iowa, where he engaged in general merchandise. Young Dorwart clerked in the store until 1856, when he went to Iowa City and became the manager of a wholesale and retail drygoods house for his father. In 1859 he commenced to read medicine with Dr. W. H. White at Iowa City. In 1860 and 61 he attended the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Keokuk, Iowa. In October, 1861, while in St. Louis on a visit, he enlisted in the Western Sharpshooters, then transferred to the Fourteenth Missouri Infantry, then to the Sixty-sixth Illinois Infantry (riflemen). He was at the capture of Fort Donelson, Shiloh, at the siege and battle of Corinth, on the 3d and 4th of October, 1S62, and was there taken prisoner, carried to Vicksburgh, Miss., paroled and sent to Benton Barracks; was exchanged, returned to his regiment and took part in the battle of Iuka, and in Sherman's Atlanta campaign. The term for which he had enlisted having expired he was mustered out at Atlanta, Ga., in 1864. He went to Johnson County, Iowa, where he practiced medicine. In 1865 he moved to South English, Iowa, and practiced until 1871, when he moved to Saline County, Neb., and homesteaded nine miles south of Friend, on Section 14, Town 6, Range 1 East, where he practiced medicine and improved his claim until 1878, when he moved to Friend. In 1879 he was elected Coroner of Saline County, and in 1881 was re-elected. He was married in December, 1864, to Miss Helen DeWitt at Genoa Bluff, Iowa, and they have eight children.

L. D. FLETCHER, proprietor Friendville Cheese Factory, which he erected in the spring of 1881--size 20x24 feet--at a cost of $800, the capacity of which is 400 pounds of cheese per day; commenced business June 17, 1881. He came to Nebraska in October, 1877, and engaged in various occupations. He now owns eighty acres of land, seventy of which are under cultivation near the village. He was born in Pennsylvania December 29, 1848, and moved with his parents to Kane County, Ill., 1852, where he lived until 1877. He married in Elgin, Ill., February 23, 1870, to Miss Emma Fisher of Coburg, Canada. They have two children--Lillie May and Albert Ray.

JOHN O. FRANTZ, firm of Frantz & Brickley, dealers in general merchandise, began trade at Exeter, in 1874, moved to Friendville in 1875, and carried a stock of about $2,500. Brickley became a partner in 1877, now carry a stock of about $8,000. They erected their brick store in the fall of 1880, size, twenty-five by eighty, two stories high, at a cost of about $4,000. He is a member of the Masonic order. Was born in Fayette, Seneca Co., N. Y., August 5, 1845, and lived in native State until he came to Nebraska. Married December 25, 1877, to Miss Lila J. Sanders of Friendville, Neb., formerly of Waukegan, Ill. Have two children, Nora and Lewis J.

C. E. FRIEND, dealer in stock and founder of the town of Friend, was born in Lancaster County, Pa., in 1847. In 1852 his parents moved to Knox County, Ill. In 1865, he was in the employ of Simeon Collinson, as a clerk in a general store at Altona, Ill., remaining one year, and then was employed by J. W. Cook of Yates City, Ill., in the same capacity. In 1868, went to Galva, Ill,, where he attended school for two terms, and then was employed as salesman in the dry goods house of M. M. Ford, at Galva. In the spring of 1869, bought a team and drove to Poweshiek County, Iowa, where he remained until after harvest, when he started for Nebraska, and found work for his team at railroad grading. In the spring of 1870, homesteaded the land where now stands the town of Friend. In the fall went to Lincoln, and clerked in the store of J. W. Crossin until May, 1871, when a friend induced him to take an assortment of goods to his place. Thus he opened the only stock of goods for miles in either direction. He had a petition circulated for a post office, and the authorities named the office Friendville, and appointed him Postmaster. On the building of the railroad to this place Mr. F. secured a station and the railroad authorities called the town Friend, and the post office has now adopted the name. Mr. F. has used his best endeavors to build up the place, and it is now one of the most thriving towns in the county. In 1874, Mr. F. sold out his stock of merchandise and has since devoted his time to stock-raising and the sale of his town lots. Was married in April, 1872, to Miss Wellmina B. Ohnsted, then living nine miles south of Friend. They have two children, J. Mortimer, nine years, and Edith, three years old. Mr. F. is a member of Friend Lodge, No. 73, A., F. & A. M.

J. W. GILBERT, farmer, P. O. Friend, Section 33, Town 8 Range 2, East, was born in Ohio, in 1840. In 1865, he moved to Saline County, Neb., and took the place he now lives on as a homestead. At that time there were about sixty settlers in the county. In 1879, was elected to the State Legislature for the term of two years, for Saline County; and in 1880, was elected County Commissioner for three years; has held other minor offices. Mr. G's father came to Nebraska, with his son; they secured about 1,000 acres of land on Turkey Creek, and were successfully engaged there in mixed farming until the death of the elder gentleman, February 22, 1882. Jonas Gilbert is a native of Ohio, and was born in Shelby County, in 1810. In 1834, was married to Louisa Winans, a native of New Jersey. She was born in 1816. J. W. Gilbert was an only son. He was married in 1863, to Miss Mattie Hoschouer of Darke County, Ohio, who, two years later left all her people, who were well off, and followed her husband to the plains of Nebraska, to help make a home and a name in the far west.

W. H. HEWIT, M. D., and druggist, Friend. Was born in Jefferson County, Wis., in 1850. Attended the Wisconsin State University and graduated from that institution in 1873, and read medicine with Dr. Earl at Columbus, Wis. In 1873-'74 and '75 attended Rush Medical College, at Chicago, Ill., where he was engaged in practicing and teaching school and graduated in 1877, when he located at New Lisbon, Wis., for a short time, and located at Friend in the fall of 1877, and practiced medicine. In January, 1881, purchased the drug store of J. V. Ainsworth & Co. Belongs to the Temple of Honor and I. O. O. F.

T. H. KELLEY was born in Longford County, Ireland, in the year 1845. In 1857 removed to Dublin, where he engaged in business of miller and stone-dresser. In 1863, emigrated to America, settled in Ottawa, Ill,, where he engaged in restaurant business. In 1870 removed to Lincoln, Neb., where he engaged in saloon business. In 1877 settled in Friend, engaged in business last stated, in which he has continued since. Was married in Lincoln, Neb., December, 1873, to Mary May Gipheart. They have two children--Etta and John T., living; and two, Lilly Viola and Clara, deceased.

MATHEW McDOUGALL, firm McDougall & Callahan, dealers in a general line of hardware. Carry a stock of about $10,000. The business was first opened in 1878, by the subject of this sketch. Mr. C. became a partner in October, 1881. They employ five men in their business. Erected a brick store building in season 1882 on corner Maple and Fourth streets, at a cost of $5,000. Size of building, 25x80 feet, two stories high. Mr. McD. first came to Crete, Saline Co., and clerked in hardware store several months, then came to Friend and opened business. Born in Province Ontario, May 26, 1847; lived in native country until summer 1877. Began the tinner's trade at the age of eighteen, working in native place seven years. He is a member of Masonic Order, I. O. O. F. and Methodist Episcopal Church. Married in 1869 to Miss Caroline Amelia Jones of same Province and place. Have one daughter, Lillie Caroline, born May 22, 1871. Mr. McDougall was elected to House of State Representatives in fall 1880. Served in 1881-'82.

A. M. MILLER, was born in Milton, Rock Co., Wis., in 1855. Resided there until the year of 1878, engaged for the better part of that time in farming. In the latter year moved to Friend, Neb., where for some time he followed the occupation of farming, but recently engaged in the butcher and meatmarket business. Is a member of I. O. G. T. and S. of T.

NELSON C. MILLER, farmer and stock raiser, first came to Nebraska in the spring of 1871; located on a homestead, Section 22, Town 8, Range 1 West; now owns there 160 acres--120 under cultivation; 80 acres on Section 23--40 under cultivation; 8 acres a fine growing timber, all planted by him from seed; some of the trees are eighteen inches in diameter, and thirty feet high. He was born in Tuscarawas County, Ohio, June 23, 1837; lived in native State until twenty-one years old, and moved to Rock Island County, Ill., where he farmed and worked by the month; married in Rock Island County, Ill., 1863, to Miss Mary F. Ward, of his native place in Ohio; have four children, Willie E., Rosa, Jessie and Oliver. He enlisted in 1865, in Company I, Fourteenth Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry; mustered out at Pulaski, Florida, in July, 1865.

H. F. MORTON was born in Ripton, Vt., in the year 1832; in 1875, removed to Nebraska, settling in Friend, and engaged in the real estate and loan business, under the firm name Friend & Morton; was married in the year 1853, at Herman, N. Y., to Miss Laura McEwen. They have four children, Joel B., Cassie and Eva and C.C. Enlisted as a private, in 1861, in the Sixteenth New York Regiment; but about one year thereafter, was transferred to the One Hundred and Twenty-first New York; was promoted to Sergeant; was in all battles of his regiment, the principal ones being Antietam, two at Chancellorsville, two at Fredericksburg, and at Gettysburg; was mustered out in spring of 1865. There were five of the family, brothers, who served during the war, and all returned but one. Mr. Morton has held office of Justice of the Peace during the last four years of his residence in Friend; is a member of Blue Lodge and Chapter of A., F. & A. M.

L. H. PAGE was born in Belvidere, Ill., in 1841; removed, in 1849, to Dundee, Yates Co., N. Y., but after two years removed to West Bank of Seneca Lake; after two years residence, removed to Northern Michigan, on Grand Traverse Bay, remaining eight years; from thence to Grand Rapids, Wis., where he remained nine years, where he followed photographing. In 1871, removed to Beaver, crossing Seward County, Neb., but, in about a year, settled in Friend, where he engaged for three years in business of building and contracting; since then, has engaged in real estate and loan insurance business; married in Grand Rapids, Wis., to Bertha Turnbull, but separated shortly after, and, in 1878, was married in Friend, to Mrs. Harriet C. Moon; has one child by first wife, Charles F., and one by second wife, Raymond H. Mr. Page is a member of I. O. O. F., Assessor of Friend Precinct, and a Notary Public for Saline County.

WILLIAM PORTER, dealer in coal, Friend, Neb., was born in Erie County, Pa., in 1825. His parents moved to Illinois in 1845 and in 1846 to Wisconsin, where he remained until 1861 when he went to California. In 1866, returned to Wisconsin, but in the same year started for Montana and spent the next four years in Utah and Nevada. In 1870, went to Texas, and in 1871 located in Seward, Neb., and came to Friend in 1875, and then being in the carpenters' and builders' trade he built nearly all of the stores and dwellings in the place, and 1881, went into the coal business. Mr. P. has been twice married--in 1851 to Miss Elizabeth Fillebrown, of Monroe, Wis., and in 1872 to Miss Cornelia South, also of Monroe, Wis. Belongs to Friend Lodge No. 73, A., F. & A. M.

GEORGE F. SAWYER, collection agent and notary public, Friend, Neb.

J. D. STONE, proprietor Friendville Bank, opened for business December, 1881, deposits, $1500. He owns a grist mill three miles south of Friendville, erected in 1878; size, 24x34, two stories high; two run of stone; capacity, 200 bushels per day. He owns 800 acres of land in various locations. He first came to Saunders County, Neb., in August, 1868, and located on a homestead farm five years, then engaged in milling. Born in Cavendish, Windsor Co., Vt., December 21, 1812. Lived in his native State until 1834, and moved to Wayne County, N. Y., engaged in teaching a number of years, then went into mercantile business until 1858. Moved to Carlisle, Ill., and engaged in distillery business three and one-half years; then to Hancock County, Ill.; farmed and run a distillery until he came to Nebraska. Married in Wayne County, N. Y., June 16, 1839, to Miss Charity F. Sutherland, of latter place. Have four children, Athenia M., now married to John Grey; Harriet J., married to John H. Van Housen; Frances A., now married to Mr. N. H. Starkey. Mr. Stone is a member of the I. O. O. F., etc., since 1845, and a member of the Universalist Church for over forty years.

CHARLES WHITNEY was born in the year 1838 in the city of Ogdensburg, N. Y., where he lived until four years of age. With his parents he then removed to Chicago, where he resided until 1857. He then removed to Macoupin County, Ill., where he followed the occupation of teaching. In the spring of 1861, after graduating from St. Louis Medical College, he removed to Christian County, Ill, where he commenced the practice of medicine, remaining there until the fall of 1868, when he accepted position of surgeon of combined coal mines of Du Quoin, Perry Co., Ill. Failing health in 1869, caused him to remove for the winter to the Southern States and Cuba, and in the following summer he removed to California, remaining there until spring of 1871, when he returned to the East, settling in Guthrie County, Iowa. Was engaged in drug business, at the same time following his profession, until 1877. In 1878 he removed to Friend, Neb., taking up the practice of law, having been admitted to the bar in Adair County in 1873, and occasionally practicing his former profession of medicine. Lately he has confined himself almost exclusively to law. Is a member of Blue Lodge and Chapter of A., F. & A. M. Was married in Macoupin County, Ill., in 1859, to Anna Smalley. They had three children, but all are deceased. Married again, in 1880, in Friendville, to Miss Myrtle E. Hilt.

EDWARD WHITCOMB, dealer in coal. Friendville, Saline County, was born in Susquehanna County, Pa., in 1843. When he was ten years of age removed with his parents to Lee County, Ill., where he remained until the breaking out of the war of the Rebellion, when he enlisted in Company A, Thirty-fourth Illinois Infantry, and served throughout the war. Was in the battle of Pittsburgh Landing, Stone River, and all the battles of Sherman's Atlanta campaign, including the charge at Kenesaw Mountain and Jonesborough, Ga.; went with Sherman on his march to the sea; was at Bentonville, N. C., and at this engagement was slightly wounded by a spent ball; returning to Kane County, Ill., after the war, and in 1870 came to Nebraska, and located at Friend, and went into the general merchandise business, in which business he continued until 1881. Was elected a member of the Nebraska Legislature of 1877. Has been Chairman of the Saline County Republican Central Committee for seven years. Was married in Ogle County, Ill., in December, 1865, to Miss Hannah Fletcher. They have one child. Mr. W. is a member of Silver Link Lodge, No. 69, I. O. O. F., and Friend Lodge, No. 89. I. O. G. T.

FRANCIS M. WOODRUFF, dealer in general merchandise. Opened trade in March, 1879, carrying a stock of about $1,000. Now carries a stock of about $4,000. He first located in Seward County, Neb., and farmed a year, previous to entering into business in the village. Born in Oswego County, Fulton Township, N. Y., June 14, 1842, and lived in his native State until he came to Nebraska. Was reared on a farm. Enlisted October 14, 1861, in Company H. Seventy-sixth Regiment New York Volunteer Infantry. Participated in the battles of Malvern Hill, Antietam, Robinson's Tavern, Fredericksburgh, Bristow Station, second Bull Run, Gettysburgh, Brandy Station, Spottsylvania C. H., and Wilderness, where he was taken prisoner May 5, 1864, and confined until April 2, 1865. Mustered out in Washington, D. C., April 15, 1865. He was promoted during his service to First Lieutenant of his company. Married in Friendville, October 17, 1881, to Miss Josephine Amy. He is a member of the I. O. O. F., being N. G. of same; also of the I. O. G. T., and the Masonic order of Friendville.

PLEASANT HILL.

Pleasant Hill, located near the center of the county, was founded in the year 1869, on land belonging to Hardin Duval, who laid off the town site. The beginning of the place was the starting of a store by William Engles, who also kept the post office. William Smith was the next party to locate in the town. The town is located on Turkey Creek, which affords excellent water power, and Smith began the erection of a grist mill which was completed in the spring of 1870.

In 1871 it was made the county seat from which its growth became more rapid until the place attained a population of about 500 and was for that time a live and thriving place, containing three good stores, two hotels and county buildings. During the time the county seat was at this place the jail was burned and the lives of the four inmates were lost, an account of which appears at another place.

The county seat was removed from Pleasant Hill to Wilber, in 1878, at which juncture the growth of the town ceased and began to decline, and is, at present, only a small country town, without any railroad advantages and with only 150 of a population.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES.

W. B. SMITH, proprietor of Amity Mills, Pleasant Hill, Neb., was born in Marseilles, Ill. In 1853 when he was twelve years old his parents moved to Marengo, Iowa and in 1869 they moved to Nebraska and located at Pleasant Hill where his father built the first mill in Saline County. The mill cost $12,000 and has supplied the surrounding country with flour for some years. In 1877 W. B. purchased the mill of his father. He was married in 1875 to Miss Mary L. Vore, of Crete, Neb.

W. L. TURNER, of W. L. Turner & Co., general merchandise, Pleasant Hill, Neb., was born in Fayette County, Pa., in 1851. In 1860 he went to Benton County, Iowa, where he remained until 1872 when he came to Nebraska and located at Pleasant Hill and opened a general store. In 1875 was appointed Postmaster at this place and has held the office ever since. Was married in 1876 to Miss M. W. Skiles, of Tama County, Iowa. They have one child, a girl five years old. Is a member of Crete Lodge, No. 37, A., F. & A. M.

SWAN CITY.

The first town started in the county is located in the southeastern part, in the forks of Swan and Turkey Creek. The town was laid off early in the year 1867, when the county became organized, and was made the seat of government for the county. At first, however, the necessities for establishing a county seat were imaginary, the business was limited, and the county officials made their pockets the offices, and were located at such places as they might be found.

The property on which the town was built, belonged originally to T. Remington, Thomas Freeman and T. Cline. Freeman opened a store, and Cline built a saw-mill. The same year, 1867, Dr. Levi Anthony and E. Mack began the building of a flouring mill, but which, prior to its completion, was purchased by John Dunbar. This and the sawmill, built by Thomas Cline, were the first of either kind built in the county. The place never attained any considerable size, having had but two or three stores, two mills, and a few scattered houses, with a small population.

The first term of the District Court for the county was held here in May, of 1870. After the removal of the county seat, the town dwindled away, and when Wilber was started, about three miles to the east, almost the entire town was removed to that place, and all that is left is the old grist mill, and two or three dwelling houses.

WESTERN,

a small country place in the southern part of the county was established in 1872, and has a population of thirty-nine; contains a few dwelling houses, a schoolhouse, post office, store and blacksmith shop.

Albany, Atlanta, Blue Island, Danville, Fairview, Girard, Repose, Goldrinsey, Honesdale, Varna, Hornesdale, Le Grand, Lucieville, Mandana, North Fork, Saxon, Riceville and Swan ville, are post offices located at various points in the county.

ATLANTA PRECINCT.

JAMES McCREEDY, farmer and stock raiser, Section 20, P. O. Goldrinsey, was born in New York, in 1822; received a fair education and turned his attention to teaching, commencing in 1839, and, in all, has taught forty-two years. In 1844 he removed to Caledonia County, Ill., where he remained until 1870. In 1855 he engaged in the mercantile business until 1861, when he enlisted in the Fifty-fifth Illinois Infantry, serving three years. He received his discharge November 2, 1864. In 1870 he emigrated to Nebraska, taking a homestead on Section 20, Township 6, Range 1 east, where he has lived since, teaching one or two terms of school each year. In 1881 he had five pupils whose grandmother attended the first school he taught in 1839. In 1871 he was elected County Superintendent of Public Instruction, and re-elected in 1873, serving until January, 1876, when he was elected Representative to the State Legislature of Nebraska, serving one term. He was married June 2, 1842, at Vista, N. Y., to Miss S. Field. They have two children--C. W. and Viola R. Is a member of Blue Valley Lodge, No. 64. A., F. & A. M. of Wilber.




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