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Cornell University Library 
F 674L7 H41 

History of the city of Lincoln Nebraska 


3 1924 028 874 281 


Cornell University 

The original of this book is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

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the United States on the use of the text. 



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The authors of this work have undertaken the task of recording 
the history of Lincoln at this time, because they felt that it was a 
work that should be performed while it was still possible to get the 
facts from those who are personally cognizant of them. Even at this 
time, only twenty-two years away from the founding of the city, much 
difficulty has been experienced in getting the absolute facts of the early 
days ; and while great care has been taken to secure strict accuracy in 
all the features of this work, the authors cannot hope to have been en- 
tirely successful in their endeavor. But the volume is given to the 
public with the request that such credit be given to it as is due to work 
conscientiously and honestly performed. History is made rapidly in 
this representative city of a wonderfully developing State, and the 
authors of this work expect to continue in the future the work they 
have begun in the following pages. They therefore request all who 
read this volume to notify them of any inaccuracies that may be dis- 
covered in its pages, and to communicate to them any facts omitted 
herein and which would be of interest and value to the people of Lin- 
coln and of the State as a part of the city's history. The authors de- 
sire to express their thanks to those persons who have generously 
assisted in the preparation of these pages, among whom may be men- 
tioned Hon. C. H. Gere, Hon. John Gillespie, Col. Simon Benadom, 
Hon. Thomas Hyde, Hon. John S. Gregory, Major Bohanan, and 


Chapter I. 

























The Lincoln of To-day 9 

Coronado's Discovery of Nebraska 15 

Nebraska from Territorial Times 25 

Nebraska's Resources 57 

Early Settlement of Lancaster County 67 

Lancaster County Politically 82 

The Salt Basins 90 

Removal of the Capital to Lincoln 100 

Incidents of the Capital Removal 114 

An Interesting Document — The Original Report of the Capital 

Commissioners : 124 

Tho Village of Lancaster from its Founding to 1867 — Reminis- 
cences of the Early Days 136 

Lincoln from 1867 to 1869 147 

Lincoln for Twenty Years — The Wonderful Growth into a City, 164 

Lincoln Politically , 177 

The Railroads which Enter the City — The great Territory which 

they lay Tributary to Her 200 

The State Institutions — The Penitentiary Revolt 213 

Lincoln as an Educational Center 226 

The Churches of the City 247 

Secret Orders 277 

Irish National League — Sketches of its Prominent Leaders 299 

Financial Institutions of the city 313 

The Press of Lincoln 325 

Incarceration of the City Council 335 

The Tartarrax Pageant 339 

Formation of the Old Settlers' Association — Its list of members, 346 
Lincoln's Remarkable growth — Sketches of Some of her Prom- 
inent Citizens 357 



The Lincoln of To-day — Why the City has Grown so Rapidly, and why 
Expectations of Future Growth are Reasonable — The Country 
Tributary to Lincoln— What Lincoln Really is and has. 

A city is builded upon a great water way, where the commerce of 
half a hundred states may float to its wharves ; near the waters of a 
rapid stream that frets its banks with the impatient power which 
might turn the busy wheels of a hundred mills ; where the generous 
earth needs but to be asked, to give up for man's uses unlimited stores 
of baser metals and the fuel with which they may be converted into 
things of utility and beauty ; at the foot of mountains filled with gold 
and silver that attract thousands of fortune seekers, wild with dreams 
of sudden wealth, and yield to Fortune's favored few the incomes of 
princes and kings. 

Another city is builded where no vessels float, no water power 
roars and foams, no coal nor iron nor gold nor silver rewards the 
delver in the earth; where nature offers no bonus to the favored few, 
nor cheats the many with the baseless fabric of dreams never to be 
fulfilled, but with even-handed justice holds out to all the promise of 
an adequate return for labor faithfully performed. 

Capital flows to the first city to take the bonus held out by nature's 
hand, and builds with the accumulations of other times and other 
fields, in the hope of an ultimate return. Men to whose imagina- 
tions the extraordinary advantages of the place appeal, flock to it in 
the hope that there they may obtain the reward of labor without the 
unpleasant necessity of its exercise. It is built from without. Its 
future is mortgaged to the capitalist — it has borrowed his money in- 
stead of making it. Its continuing present is menaced by its poorer 
citizens, who have come to find wealth, not to produce it. But its 
2 (9) 


growth is rapid, for it holds out the gambler's hope of enormous gains, 
and appeals to the imagination of the restless emigrant. 

The second city attracts little capital from the outside ; it has no 
extraordinary inducements to appeal to capital. The eyes of the coun- 
try are not turned upon it ; it has nothing within it to excite the im- 
agination of the emigrant or fortune hunter. The capital within it 
is that only which it has itself produced. The residents are only 
those who have come because of the employment which they have been 
enabled to find in the ordinary avenues of life. 

If these two cities grow side by side, and the second shows the same . 
percentage of growth as the first, which is the more remarkable"? the 
one which has displayed lavish natural advantages to attract capital 
and excite the imagination of the world, or the one which could only 
hold out as an incentive the hope of moderate returns for energy and 
industry ? 

If these two cities grow at an even pace, which has the more sub- 
stantial prosperity and the more solid basis for future growth? the 
one which has been built up from the outside, which has attracted 
population by vague and extraordinary promises ; or the one which 
has grown out of its own resources, and whose people have come to it 
because they saw work awaiting them which they were willing to do? 

An extraordinary effect ceases to be extraordinary when it is found 
to follow an extraordinary cause. An extraordinary effect for which 
no extraordinary cause can be discovered, becomes a phenomenon. 

The growth of Lincoln has been more remarkable than that of any 
other city in the West. It has no fuel, no mines, no water power, 
no remarkable natural advantages : and yet, on the spot where twenty- 
one years ago the emigrant, in his lonely covered wagon, scared the 
timid antelope from its grassy couch, and scanned the horizon with 
anxious eye to see if he might discover the form of some Indian brave 
cutting its even line, fifty thousand busy people throng the streets of 
a great city; a city which reaches 200,000 square miles of territory, 
and 2,000,000 people, by ten radiating lines of railroad which do a 
business of nearly a million tons per year, and give employment to 
1,350 men; a city which is traversed by thirty-five miles of street 
railway, and has seven miles of paving, with as much more provided 
for; twenty miles of sewerage, twenty miles of water mains; a hun- 
dred jobbing houses and as many factories; four great State institu- 


tions, besides the Capitol ; three universities ; a million dollars invested 
in church property; and hundreds of the finest residences in the State. 

The growth of Lincoln has not excited widespread interest over 
the country because there has been nothing sensational connected with 
it; and yet there is no visitor to the city who does not express the 
amazement which he feels when he learns its size and importance. 
Indeed, half the residents of Lincoln are themselves amazed when 
they drive about the city and see the growth and improvements which 
have been going on while they slept. The reason of this is that the 
growth has been due not to extraordinary causes, but to the steady 
though rapid development of the country of which Lincoln has be- 
come the most convenient point to supply. An agricultural region 
is the richest in the world ; but its development is steady and com- 
monplace. Lincoln is the railroad center of as magnificent an agricul- 
tural empire as exists in the world ; and the whole secret of her great 
and rapid growth lies in this fact. This growth has been so quiet as 
hardly to excite comment ; but it is as substantial, and certain of con- 
tinuance, as is that natural and irresistable development in which its 
roots are driven deep. 

The explanation of the growth to greatness, of a city which could 
boast of no water power, mines, fuel, nor other so-called " natural ad- 
vantages," lies in the fact that it is commerce, and not manufactures, 
that builds great cities. Natural advantages may afford the founda- 
tion for a limited number of factories ; cheap coal may give birth to 
a few industries in the operation of which fuel is the most expensive 
item; abundant raw material may attract a few of the factories which 
use the material; and these factories . may support a hundred or a 
thousand families : if they support five thousand families the limit of 
population may be little beyond this number. Some of the largest 
.manufacturing institutions in the United States are in small towns. 
They present no attractions to anybody except to a man who wants to 
buy a bill of goods and get away, or to the sight seer whose curiosity 
is of a limited and special character. But commerce knows no natu- 
ral limitations. Given the means of reaching a great and populous 
territory, and a commercial city lays under tribute the factories of the 
world, and turns to its own profit the special advantages that have 
given rise to a thousand manufacturing towns. It becomes the center 
to which tradesmen of every kind collect to purchase their wares; to 


which the members of all professions gather to procure those things 
which they use in the practice of their vocations ; to which the sight 
seer and the politician gravitate to see the most of things or persons 
in the shortest time. In the commercial center supply and demand 
meet in every avenue of life, — mercantile, professional, physical, in- 
tellectual, aesthetic, moral. The diversity of interests in such a city 
becomes its greatest power of attraction: every source of supply 
seeks there a demand ; every demand seeks there a source of supply. 
There are no waterways west of the Mississippi river which are of 
service to commerce, and it is at the great railway center, wherever 
that may by man be placed, that she sets her throne. 

It is by virtue of being such a railway center that Lincoln has 
grown so marvelously ; grown in spite of the lack of "natural ad- 
vantages;" grown in the face of the repeated predictions of her own 
citizens that no further growth could be looked for. And that growth 
will continue until the development of the country which her railroads 
make tributary to her shall cease. The railroad system of most im- 
portance to Lincoln is the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad, 
which has nearly 2,500 miles of track in the State, and almost as 
much as all the other roads. There is no city in the country so pre- 
eminently the center of any railroad as Lincoln- is of the B. & M. 
The road has six lines radiating from Lincoln to every part of the 
State. It handles all its transferring and reshipping here, as it has no 
yardage at any other place in the State. Here it has forty-t\¥o miles 
of side track, on which 800 men handle from 1,000 to 2,000 cars a 
day. Over these radiating roads there run out from Lincoln every 
week-day thirteen passenger trains and from fifty to seventy-five freight 
trains. The system girds the entire southern half of the State, and 
reaches out into northwestern Nebraska by three parallel lines which 
will occupy three-fourths of the northern half of the State and extend 
into the mining regions of Wyoming and Idaho, and the cattle ranches 
of Dakota and Montana. Every pound of merchandise that passes 
into all this vast territory from eastern points of supply, and every 
pound of grain, and every hog and steer that goes out of the State 
over the B. & M. system, passes through Lincoln. 

Besides this system, the Elkhorn operates over 960 miles of road 
in the State, giving Lincoln connection with all the northwestern part 
of the State to the line; the Union Pacific operates over 875 miles of 


track, giving Lincoln connection with the Pacific coast and with the 
southern systems in Kansas ; the Missouri Pacific has 400 miles of 
track in the State, and gives Lincoln a short line to Kansas City, St. 
Louis, and the Atlantic seaboard, and places the city in direct com- 
munication with the southern markets. 

In an elaborate review of Lincoln's railroad situation, published 
March 12, 1888, in a special edition of the State Democrat, prepared 
by one of the authors of this history, it was shown that the popula- 
tion reached directly by Lincoln's railroads was 989,591. This was 
an accurate estimate, made up from the censuses and votes of the coun- 
ties reached by the roads in Nebraska, Kansas, and Colorado, and 
did not include any of that vast territory in Colorado, New Mexico, 
and Wyoming, which is reached by lines connecting with Lincoln's 
roads, and in which Lincoln jobbers are doing a large and rapidly- 
increasing business. 

There is a philosophy of history ; and this brief discussion of the 
territory tributary to Lincoln, and the city's facilities for reaching it, 
has been given in recognition of the fact that it is a part of the his- 
torian's duty to explain the causes of events, as well as to chronicle 
events themselves. The value of such historical study is in enabling 
the student to make the past foreshadow the future; and the follow- 
ing summary of the possibilities of Lincoln's growth, taken from the 
article referred to above, is deduced from the study made therein : 

"But it may be asked what grounds there are on which to expect 
that the country tributary to Lincoln will increase so steadily and 
rapidly in population as to build up a great commercial center here. 
The reply is that nearly all this territory is the very best kind of 
agricultural land, and that such land is too valuable to be idle. This, 
we take pains to say again, is not mere assertion. The settlement of 
the western counties of Nebraska has been and is marvelous. A few 
examples are given below, with authentic figures showing the popula- 
tion in 1880, in 1885, and in 1887, together with the population that 
the same territory would have at thirty-five per square mile: 




in 1880. 

in 1S85. 

in 1887. 

Pop. at 

sq. mile. 
















Sheridan (unorganized in 1880) 







"These figures are accurate, although one who is unacquainted with 
the development of the great West might well imagine that they were 
the creation of some statistical romancer. Here is a region, nearly 
all of which was so sparsely settled as to be unorganized in 1880, now 
supporting a population of 87,591; an empire which would easily 
support 800,000 people. The estimate of thirty-five per square mile 
is not an extravagant one. Kentucky has forty people per square 
mile; Indiana and Illinois have each fifty-four; Ohio has seventy- 
seven; New York has 103; Connecticut has 124; and Rhode Island 
has 243. If Cheyenne county had as many people per square mile 
as Ehode Island, her population would be 1,918,620. 

" Is it any wonder that Nebraska villages have grown into cities 
in a few years? Is there any reason to doubt that this growth is but 
the substantial and inevitable result of the development of the State? 
Is there any reason to doubt that Lincoln will become a great city 
when the 1,000,000 people now directly tributary may be swelled to 
5,000,000 without making the population more dense than that now 
supported by Indiana and Illinois?" 



Early Nebraska — Its Discovery in 1540 — The Early Legends of the 
Land of Qtjiyera — Coronado's Visit — The Explorations of Pena- 
losa — The Points Reached by These First Visitors to Nebraska. 

Nebraska as a State is comparatively new. As a country its his- 
tory dates back centuries, covered partly by the records of the priests, 
the old-time chroniclers, and partly by the legends which have come 
down to us through generations from the old Spanish settlers in Mex- 
ico, and the Indians who inhabited the land. The early history of 
Nebraska is a part of the history of all this western country, extend- 
ing from the Missouri river to the Rocky mountains, and from the 
Platte river to the Rio Grande, and westward into Mexico. Around 
and over all this region is thrown the glamour and halo of the early 
days of chivalry in America, and the tales the legends tell are vague 
and weird enough to form the climax of any tale of chivalry, ro- 
mance, or discovery. Away back three centuries and a half ago be- 
gins the legendary history of Nebraska. At that time the Land of 
the Sun, Mexico, had been taken possession of by the Spaniards, and 
from the City of Mexico exploring parties were wont to take their 
trips of discovery and exploration, led hither and thither by the fre- 
quent stories of wealth and splendor told the people by Indians who 
had strayed into that southern capital, or had been captured by the 
Spaniards in some of their frequent raids into the adjacent territories. 
Legend has it that years before the first recorded date, troops of 
Spanish cavaliers, traveling northward, entered a vast territory of 
grassy plains, crossed by broad rivers, which was said to be the home 
of a wonderfully wealthy people, whose cities, rich beyond compare, 
numbered seven: Later research has shown that some of these expe- 
ditions undoubtedly crossed what is now the northern boundary line 
of Kansas, and camped and traveled within the territory now known 
as Nebraska. 

As early as 1536, legendary history tells us, the Spaniards in Mex- 


ico had heard fairy tales of a land far to the northward, called Quivera 
— a land of unlimited wealth, of populous cities with lofty dwellings 
and stores fairly glittering with gold and silver and precious gems, 
whose people lived in a style of grandeur unknown in this country, 
and who were highly civilized, and acquainted with the arts. In the 
year 1536 four men, half starved and worn with toil, heat, cold, ship- 
wrecks, and battles with the natives, reached the City of Mexico from 
the mountains and plains of the north. These four men were all that 
were left of a band of four hundred Spaniards that eight years before 
had landed on the coast of Florida, for the purpose of exploring that 
unknown country. That company of troops had traveled to the north- 
westward many weary years, but hunger, toil, and conflicts with the 
hostile tribes of Indians they met, had reduced the ranks to the four, 
whose coming into the City of Mexico, and the marvelous tales they 
told, excited the curiosity of the people. This band of four hundred 
had evidently traversed the country from the southeast as far north as 
Kansas, and west through Colorado. The stories of these four men 
confirmed the legends that had been handed down among the Mexi- 
cans for many generations, and if they had been doubted before, none 
now dared to dispute the existence to the northward of a country such 
as had been pictured to them. 

From this time forward we have not to depend upon legends only, 
for the events following this date were recorded, possibly inaccurately, 
by the priests, who were the historians of the time. Immediately fol- 
lowing the arrival of these toil-worn explorers at the City of Mexico, 
an expedition was fitted out under the leadership of Marcos de Niza, 
a Franciscan monk, and sent to discover and report upon these mys- 
terious cities and pave the way for Spanish colonization. Friar Mar- 
cos, the commander, soon became discouraged and disheartened bv the 
cruelty practiced upon his band of soldiers by the natives, who slew 
many of them, and turned back, but not wanting his comrades at 
home to think him the coward that he was, he instructed his soldiers, 
who were ready for any scheme that would end their marching, to 
say that they had really seen the seven cities of Cibola from afar, and 
that they were more populous and far more wealthy than had ever 
been told. These tales again excited Spanish curiosity and cupidity 
and at once a larger and more powerful expedition was fitted out un- 
der the command of the Viceroy of Mexico, Francisco Vasquez de 


Coronado. This expedition marks the time when Nebraska was 
really discovered — the discovery which history records. 

Judge Savage, of Omaha, has spent much time and labor in col- 
lecting the scattered information to be had upon this early discovery, 
and from his account many of the facts and incidents of this expedi- 
tion, and also his conclusions as to the points visited by Coronado 
and other explorers, are used. According to the authorities upon this 
subject, Coronado's expedition, composed of three hundred Spaniards 
and eight hundred natives, set out from the City of Mexico early in 
the spring of 1540, with bright anticipations and sanguine hopes. 
These were somewhat dampened by the hardships of the way, for the 
country traversed was rough, mountainous, and a desert; and now 
and then, notwithstanding the marvels of the seven cities which they 
expected to find at the end of their journey, distrust and homesick- 
ness overmastered their curiosity, and they longed to return home. It 
was only the stern resolution of their commander which prevented 
the expedition being a failure almost at the very start. But at last, 
after a tedious and toilsome march, what were thought to be the seven 
cities of Cibola were reached, and here the disappointment was so 
great that a mutiny was almost successful. And the soldiers were 
really not to blame, for the highly-colored tales had all proved false. 
The seven cities were seven hamlets; the houses were small; gold 
was not found ; the minerals were of little value ; and farms there 
were in Mexico far better and richer than all of Cibola. 

But the fitting out of the expedition had cost too much money to 
thus come to an ignoble end, and Coronado began to inquire if there 
were not other cities, richer and more populous, which it would be 
profitable to visit. The natives, eager to get rid of their Spanish vis- 
itors, answered in the affirmative. Two hundred and fifty miles to 
the eastward, they said, was a rich, peaceful, and populous province, 
where their desire for wealth and ambition for power might be grat- 
ified. Following the directions given, Coronado led his little army 
to this new locality, a point which is identified to-day by its natural 
characteristics and by its ruins, as being the country which is now the 
eastern part of the Territory of New Mexico, and not far south of 
the present site of Sauta F6. Here the natives gave the Spaniards a 
cordial and sincere welcome, they being of a gentle and kindly nature, 
in return for which the Spaniards treated them with the utmost era- 


elty. Having been instructed by the Spanish viceroy to let these 
people (meaning the inhabitants of the cities of Cibola) know that 
there was "a God in Heaven," Coronado proceeded to instruct the 
natives, first by stealing everything they had, then by imprisoning 
the chiefs of the leading tribes, and lastly, by burning their villages. 
Not satisfied with these outrages, Coronado's soldiers made inroads 
upon the families of their entertainers, debauching their wives and 
children. Notwithstanding these acts of "Christian charity," the 
natives still treated the Spanish troopers with what kindness they 
could, but naturally schemed for some way by which they could rid 
themselves of their unwelcome and unbidden guests, in which they 
were finally successful. 

One of these natives, willing to sacrifice his life for the salvation ot 
the rest, and with a self-sacrificing spirit wonderful for a savage, took 
upon himself the task of carrying the scheme agreed upon into oper- 
ation. Early one morning he suddenly appeared before Coronado, 
with much mystery in his movements, and great pretended hostility 
to the natives. He described a far-off country with such eloquence of 
language that the country pictured surpassed all previous imaginings 
of the Spaniards. The man came, he said, from a land far to the 
northeast, where there was a river seven miles in width. "Within 
its depths were huge fishes as large as horses, and upon its broad bosom 
floated canoes which carried twenty oarsmen on a side; huge vessels 
with sails which bore upon their prow a golden eagle, and upon the 
poop a sumptuous dias, whereon their lords were wont to sit beneath a 
canopy of cloth of gold. That every clay the monarch of this favored 
region, named Tartarrax, long bearded, gray haired, and rich, took 
his noontide sleep in a garden of roses under a huge spreading tree, 
to the branches of which were suspended innumerable golden bells, 
which sounded in exquisite harmony when shaken by the wind; that 
this king prayed by means of a string of beads, and worshiped a cross 
of gold and the image of a woman, the queen of Heaven ; that through- 
out the land the commonest utensils were of wrought silver, and the 
bowls, plates, and porringers, of beaten gold. This land of plenty, he 
said, was 


And thither he waited to conduct his friends whenever they should be 
pleased to accompany him." 


The tale was well concocted, and told with consummate skill. The 
king being pictured as a man who worshiped after the fashion of the 
men to whom the tale was told, naturally made them more ready to 
believe, and the stories of such magnificent wealth, pictured with every 
appearance of honesty, made them eager to conquer the land. Coro- 
nado, while a brave, intrepid, and ambitious man, was superstitious, 
and had a wonderful belief in signs and omens. In his youthful days 
he had made the acquaintance of an Arabian sage, who, after long 
study and travel in the East, where he had collected the knowledge 
and skill in necromancy supposed to be native there, had taken up his 
residence in the city of Salamanca, Coronado's birthplace. To this 
sage Coronado intrusted the duty of looking into the, future and tell- 
ing him what was in store for him in the years to come. After con- 
sulting his sacred parchments and communing with the supernatural 
beings who had imparted to him their wisdom, the necromancer re- 
ceived Coronado, and gave to him what the gods said was in store 
for him. The mystic forces which reveal future events to mortals he 
said foretold that the then young Salamancan student should one day 
become the lord of a great and distant country; but the portents 
thence forward were gloomy and sinister: they foretold that a fall 
from his horse would end his life. 

This made a strong impression on Coronado's mind, which grew as 
the years passed, and as he stood in the midst of the vast prairie 
which stretched beyond the vision of the eye on every side, surrounded 
by only a handful of dissatisfied, jealous, restless men, and listened to 
the marvelous tale of the Indian, who had volunteered to guide him 
to the fabled realm where wealth was piled mountain high, no wonder 
that the fate predicted by the sage of Salamanca came to his remem- 
brance. The first prophecy had come true — he was the lord of a 
great and distant land; — and how soon would the second one prove 
true? But the story of the Indian was so straightforward, and he 
stood the rude cross-examination of the Spaniards so well, that Coro- 
nado threw his fears to the wind, and determined to make this last at- 
tempt to find the kingdom of Quivera and the seven cities of Cibola. 
So on the 5th day of May, 1 541, Coronado and his army quitted the 
valleys which they had terrorized and "Christianized" so thoroughly, 
crossed the Pecos river from Santa Fe, and soon entered upon the 
treeless prairies of what is now Indian Territory and the State of Kan- 


sas. Across mighty plains so bare and treeless that the adventurers 
had to make large piles of buffalo chips to guide them on their return, 
they made their way for 800 miles northeasterly, to the banks of a 
considerable river, which is admitted by all who have studied the route 
and the distance traveled to have been the Arkansas. 

At this point of the march a soldier named Castaneda, ignorant and 
credulous, but pious, became the historian, and he records the story of 
this weary march. Its weariness may be imagined by thinking of 
this band of soldiers, clad in the heavy armor of the times, plodding 
its way through the long summer days over the burning plains of 
Kansas, grim and silent, each one counting his steps, the more accu- 
rately to compute the distance passed. And the picture has a tinge of 
sadness hanging over it — a pathetic tint coloring both the foreground 
and the perspective. 

But the adventurous knights seem to have had some little amuse- 
ment to beguile the weary hours — their regular amusement of robbery. 
On one occasion it is related of them that finding a village with an 
enormous quantity of skins, they cleaned it out so thoroughly and ex- 
peditiously that within fifteen minutes there was not a skin left. The 
Indians tried to save their precious possessions by force of arms, and 
the entreating tears of the squaws, but neither availed. 

Coronado at first, it will be remembered, had been suspicious of his 
guide, but had conquered his fears and suspicions. Now again these 
same suspicions became aroused in Coronado' s mind, and they quickly 
spread among his troops. It was noticed that when they met with the 
wandering nomads of the plains, if the Turk, as they called the 
guide, was the first to meet and converse with them, they confirmed his 
stories, and pointed to the eastward as the true course, whereas if com- 
munication was prevented, the tribes knew nothing of the riches and 
splendor of the land of Quivera, and insisted that the country lay to 
the north instead of to the east. 

Coronado, therefore, seeing that the guide had deceived him, and that 
with the exception of the meat of the buffalo provisions were grow- 
ing scarce, called a council of war to consider with his captains and 
lieutenants the best plans to adopt for the future. It was there decided 
that the general, with thirty of his bravest and best mounted men and 
six foot soldiers, should proceed northward in search of the land of 
Quivera, while the main body of the army should return to the vicin- 


ity of the Pecos river. So, with the Turk securely bound, and with 
guides selected from the Indian tribes, Coronado recommenced his 

Northward from the Arkansas river for many weary hours the lit- 
tle band pursued its way over the Kansas plains. July had come; 
the days were long and hot, and the nights sultry. But dogged per- 
severance and good horses brought them at last to the southern 
boundary of Nebraska. And near there, along the Platte river, they 
again found the long-sought kingdom of Quivera, with Tartarrax the 
hoary-headed ruler of the realm. But alas for their expectations ! 
Their dreams of glory and conquest had a most rude awakening. 
The only precious metal that they saw was a eopper plate hanging 
from the old chief's breast, by which he set great store, and which he 
seemingly regarded as a god. There were no musical bells, no golden 
eagle, no silver dishes, no indications of a religious worship — the 
light of truth had dispelled the dreams of magnificence. Coronado 
hung his guide, but the guide met death bravely, and with his last 
breath declared that he knew of no gold, of no cities, of no realm of 
magnificent riches, and that he had led the Spaniards away from his 
people that they might be free from persecution and spoliation. In 
August, Coronado, after erecting a cross which bore the inscription, 

" Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, general of an expedition, reached 
this place," 

set his- face southward and passed out of the land of Quivera; but 
Nebraska had been discovered. 


For one hundred and twenty-one years the great plains of Ne- 
braska were untrodden by the feet of any save the Indian tribes that 
for centuries had roamed from the Missouri to the Rockies. Their 
buffalo-skin tents formed the only cities, and the battles of the vari- 
ous tribes the only excitement on the prairies, except the chase of the 
buffalo and deer, and the festive pranks of the storm-king. For a 
century and nearly a quarter, the copper-colored wild man of the 
prairie held sway undisputed in his possession of the land. In the 
year 1662 another visit was made to Quivera, which has been recorded 
by the Spanish historians, and is the second visit of which record is 


made, the latter visit and the points reached being more easily deter- 
minable than of the first in 1541. 

The second civilized man to set his foot upon the soil of Nebraska 
whose visit has been recorded in authentic history, was a soldier, a 
knight of Spain, Don Diego, Count of Penalosa. This knight, who 
belonged to that period marked by all the glitter, romance and ad- 
venture which throw such a charm over the sixteenth and seventeenth 
centuries, was not a Spaniard, but a Creole; that is, one of American 
birth but Spanish descent. He was born at Lima, South America, 
in 1624, and after a career of wonderful vicissitudes, finally left his 
native continent and drifted northward to Mexico. Here he came 
into high favor with the Viceroy of the country, who made him, at 
the age of thirty-six, Governor and Captain-General of New Mexico. 
This was a most responsible position ; but once settled in it, Penalosa 
became again restive, and sought to perform some feat which would 
bring him everlasting glory and renown. Quivera was then the same 
goal of bright prospects that it had been to Coronado, and to that 
fabled country this knight resolved to force his way. So on the 6th 
of March, 1662, while the colonists in New England and Virginia 
were laying the foundations of an empire that has since taken in 
Quivera, and not only that but thousands of square miles beyond, 
this Spanish knight set out from Santa F6 to explore the regions to 
the north and east, to accumulate precious stones and metals, to annex 
a vast territory to his domains, to conquer the fabled opulent cities, 
and to win for himself renown and added power and influence at the 
Spanish court. 

He set out with a great company of soldiers, Indians, and retainers, 
two score of baggage wagons carrying his trappings and provisions, 
and six cannon with which to batter down the walls of the cities of 
Cibola when he should reach them. A friar, Nicholas de Freytas, 
was the historian of this expedition, and gives with much elaborate- 
ness and detail the events of the march northward, the disappoint- 
ment, disaster, and return of Penalosa. After proceeding for several 
weeks along the route laid out, the little Spanish army found itself 
confronted by a mighty river, along which dwelt an Indian nation 
who were called the Escanzaquas, the residence of this nation being 
near the fortieth parallel of latitude. This nation was at war with 
the Indians of Quivera, and when Penalosa arrived were just on the 


point of starting northward to give their enemies battle. The force 
of the Escanzaquas numbered about 3,000, and immediately upon his 
arrival Penalosa joined this force and accompanied the Indians on 
their journey. For a day this army marched westwardly along the 
right bank of a mighty, rushing river, until it made a bend so that 
its current came from the north. For another day the march was 
continued to the northward, until toward evening the soldiers per- 
ceived across the river, now flowing eastward again, a high ridge 
whose sides were covered with signal fires, which showed that the na- 
tives were aware of their approach. Still marching forward, follow- 
ing the curves of the river, the little army came to a spot where, on 
the opposite side, another river, flowing from the ridge, entered the 
stream previously followed. Here was found a very populous city — 
one of the cities of Qui vera — of vast extent. The chiefs of Qui- 
vera came over the river to welcome the Spaniards, and showed them 
every mark of esteem ; but on that same night the Escanzaquas crossed 
the river, burned the city, and put thousands of the Quiverans to 
death. The next day the Spaniards spent some time in extinguish- 
ing the flames, admiring the vast number of dwellings and the great 
fertility of the soil, and in hunting for the fabled wealth of Quivera. 
After spending some time in this search and finding nothing, Penalosa, 
on the 11th of June, 1662, turned his troops southward and departed 
for his Mexican home. 

To what points these expeditions penetrated has been the subject of 
much contention and of much difference of opini6n. But none claim 
that Coronado failed to enter this State some distance, and none dis- 
pute that Penalosa reached the Platte. At just what point the Platte 
was touched, or at Avhat point Nebraska was penetrated, is the dis- 

As to the visit of Coronado : The most generally accepted opinion, 
based upon the description of the country, its grasses, animals, and 
general topography, is that Coronado entered the State somewhere be- 
tween Gage county on the east and Furnas county on the west, probably 
east of the present location of Superior, Nuckolls county. Author- 
ities differ as to the distance and direction traveled by Coronado ; but 
the opinion of Gen. Simpson and of Mr. Gallatin is that the Republi- 
can river was crossed and the march taken in a northeasterly direction, 
and that the northern point reached was somewhere west of and on 


nearly the same parallel with the present site of Lincoln. The Span- 
ish cavalier evidently did not reach the salt basin, or his chronicler 
would have noted the peculiar appearance of the country, and the 
presence of the salt. Coronado himself states that his expedition 
reached beyond the fortieth degree of north latitude, but how much 
further can only be judged by the description of the country trav- 
ersed, the streams crossed, and the direction of the line of march. 
The recent finding of Spanish stirrups, bridle-bits, and other horse 
trappings of Moorish pattern, near the Republican, buried deep in the 
ground, while it does not prove that so early a visit was made to Ne- 
braska, does indicate that the Spaniards, hundreds of years ago, trav- 
ersed the region now embraced in the State, and left traces of their 

The point reached by Peualosa has not so much to do with the 
present treatise; but without entering upon any discussion of the reas- 
ons for the location, it seems to be the most generally accepted theory 
that Penalosa reached the Platte at or near the spot now occupied by 
the city of Columbus. 

It will be noticed that the land of Quivera was located by these 
early explorers in a half dozen different places, each spot being dis- 
carded on fresh reports of wealthy regions "just beyond," and the 
Quivera of tradition never was discovered. But the legends spurred 
on those early explorers mile after mile, league after league, north- 
ward from their southern home, until they had crossed the line that 
brought them within the confines of the State of Nebraska. The realm 
of Quivera is now a reality, and the seven cities of Cibola are legion. 
The dreams of the Spaniards have come true, and in this land, visited 
by them centuries ago, are found the gold and silver, the populous 
cities, the magnificent houses, the wealth and civilization, of the fabled 
kingdom of Tartarrax. 



Nebraska from Territorial Times— The First Officers under the Ter- 
ritorial Organization, and a List of State Officers from the 
Beginning to the Present Time— The Present State Officials. 

In 1673 the domain of modern Nebraska was claimed by Spain. 
It was a part of the great Northwest Territory, then but dimly known 
or appreciated. In 1683 LaSalle claimed this region in the name of 
the king of France. In 1762 the French formally relinquished Lou- 
isiana to Spain; but it was receded to France in 1800, and Napoleon 
Bonaparte sold it to the United States, a master stroke of good policy 
on the part of the great Frenchman, and an act which alone would 
serve as a foundation for the fame of Thomas Jefferson. The sale 
was ratified by the United States October 31, 1803. The formal 
transfer was made December 20, 1803. On the 26th of March, 1804, 
Congress divided the territory into two sections, the southern por- 
tion being named "The Territory of Orleans," and the northern, 
"The District of Louisiana." Nebraska was included in the District 
of Louisiana, as was the domain lying west of the Mississippi, north 
of Louisiana, as far west as claimed by the United States, including 
Minnesota. This magnificent territory, of 1,122,975 square miles, 
was organized as the " Territory of Louisiana," under an act of Con- 
gress passed March 3, 1805. St. Louis was made the capital, and 
President Jefferson promptly selected General James Wilkinson for 
Governor, and Frederick Bates for Secretary. These two officials, 
together with Judges R. J. Meigs and John B. C. Lucas, of the Su- 
preme Court, were given legislative control of the great Territory. 

Great Britain looked with resentful eye upon the success of the 
United States in getting possession of the splendid Louisiana domain. 
She had expected to wrest it from Napoleon, but by a swift stroke of 
diplomacy he placed it beyond her reach. But it was not her inten- 
tion to give up the great advantages offered by the possession of at 
least a portion of Louisiana, and she only awaited the time when re- 


lief from continental war should enable her to recover the lost advan- 
tage. Thomas Jefferson knew this, and with masterly decision and 
genius he proceeded to do all that lay in his power to seize upon the 
fullest possible interpretation of the stipulations with Bonaparte. 
To that end he set up a government under General Wilkinson, as re- 
lated. He at once organized an expedition under the command of 
Captains Merriweather Lewis and William Clarke, known as the Lewis 
and Clarke Expedition, to go into this unexplored region by way of the 
Missouri and Columbia rivers, in order to claim portions of the terri- 
tory by virtue of discovery, to estimate its resources, and find a short 
and practicable route to the Pacific ocean. This party of forty-three 
men left the Mississippi one mile below the mouth of the Missouri 
river on Monday, May 14, 1804. On the 21st of July the expedition 
camped at the mouth of the Platte river, and the next day stopped 
near Bellevue. On the 2d of August, a council with chiefs of the 
Otoe and Missouri Indians of the Platte country was held, on the site 
of Fort Calhoun, in Washington county. 

The party proceeded northward, stopping near the mouth of the 
Niobrara river, on Nebraska soil for the last time until its return, in 
1806, after having made its way through a trackless wilderness for 
over four thousand miles, in going and returning. 

The first permanent settlement upon the present territory of Ne- 
braska was made by the American Fur Company, at Bellevue, in 1810, 
under the leadership of Col. Peter A. Sarpy, a shrewd, bold, and en- 
terprising Frenchman. In 1842 John C.Fremont made a path across 
the Territory, up the Platte valley, and in 1847 the Mormons widened 
the trail in finding their way to the "promised land." About 1850 
the great rush to the California gold fields opened the great highway 
across Nebraska never to be discontinued, and exhibited the splendid 
possibilities of the "Platte country" to a class of men who did not 
fail to let the light of Nebraska's great natural resources, which they 
had seen, shine before the Eastern States in after years, when the craze 
for the golden West had subsided. In 1847 the Presbyterian church 
established a mission at Bellevue. In 1848 Fort Kearney was 
planted by the Government, on the present site of Nebraska City, but 
was afterward removed to Kearney county, taking the name of Fort 
Chilcls, but later the name of Fort Kearney. 

Congress made an effort to organize a Territory west of Iowa and 


Missouri in 1851-2, which failed, owing to the clash of party zeal for 
and against the spread of slavery. 

In 1852-3 a bill was introduced to create "Platte Territory," com- 
prising all of the present domain of Kansas and all of Nebraska south 
of the Platte River. This bill went to the House Committee on Ter- 
ritories, which reported a bill creating the same domain into Nebraska 
Territory. The people of Iowa were anxious to have the new Terri- 
tory directly west of their border, and to that end such of them as 
were interested in having a good field for schemes of emigration, sent 
Hadley D. Johnson, of Council Bluffs, to Washington to induce Con- 
gress to readjust the boundaries of the proposed Territory. Through 
his zealous activity two Territories were recommended by the commit- 
tee instead of one, in the famous Kansas-Nebraska Bill, which devel- 
oped such a bitter war between the slavery and anti-slavery parties, 
in Congress and out. 

Finally, Nebraska was organized as a Territory on May 30, 1854, 
with an area of 351,558 square miles. It reached from the 40th par- 
allel of north latitude to the present boundary of the British posses- 
sions, and from the Missouri river westward to the summit of the 
Rocky mountains. On February 28, 1861, 16,035 square miles were 
cut off to be attached to Colorado, and on March 2, 1861, 228,907 
square miles were set apart for Dakota. Finally, on March 3, 1863, 
another slice was taken off to form Idaho Territory. This was the 
final change in the area of Nebraska Territory, and consisted of 45,- 
999 square miles. 

President Franklin Pierce appointed as officers for the new Terri- 
tory, the following : For Governor, Francis Burt, of South Carolina ; 
for Secretary, Thomas B. Cuming, of Iowa; for Chief Justice, Fen- 
ner Furguson, of Michigan ; and for Associate Justices, James Bradley, 
of Indiana, and Edward R. Harden, of Georgia; for Marshal, Mark 
W. Izard, of Arkansas ; and for Attorney, Experience Estabrook, of 

Governor Burt reached Bellevue, the Territorial capital, October 7, 
1854. He took the oath of office on October 16th, and died there 
October 18, 1854. Secretary Cuming became the acting Governor. 

The Territory was divided into the eight counties of Burt, Wash- 
ington, Dodge, Douglas, Cass, Pierce, Forney, and Richardson. One 
or more voting precincts were established in each of these counties. 


An enumeration of the Teeritorial inhabitants was made in Octo- 
ber, 1854, for Legislative representation. According to this, each 
county was entitled to one Councilman, except Douglas, which was 
entitled to four, and Pierce, which had three. Burt, Washington, 
Dodge, Forney, and Richardson, each had two Representatives. Doug- 
las had eight, Cass three, and Pierce five. The first general election 
took place on December 12, 1854, and the first Legislature met at 
Omaha, whence the capital had been removed, on January 16, 1855. 
This pioneer body was composed of the following-named gentlemen : 


Richardson County — J. L. Sharp, President. 

Burt County — B. R. Folsom. 

Washington County — J. C. Mitchell. 

Dodge County— M. H. Clark. 

Douglas County — T. G. Goodwill, A. D. Jones, O. D. Richard- 
son, S. E. Rogers. 

Cass County — Luke Nuckolls. 

Pierce County — A. H. Bradford, H. P. Bennett, C. H. Cowles. 

Forney County — Richard Brown. 

Officers of the Council — Dr. G. L. Miller, of Omaha, Chief 
Clerk; O. F. Lake, of Brownville, Assistant Clerk; S. A. Lewis, of 
Omaha, Sergeant-at-Arms ; K. R. Folsom, Tekamah, Doorkeeper. 


Douglas County — A. J. Hanscom, Speaker; W. N. Byers, Wil- 
liam Clancy, F. Davidson, Thomas Davis, A. D. Goyer, A. J. Pop- 
pleton, and Robert Whitted. 

Burt County — J. B. Robertson, A. C. Purple. 

Washington County — A. Archer, A. J. Smith. 

Dodge County — E. R. Doyle, J. W. Richardson. 

Cass County — J. M. Latham, William Kempton, J. D. H. 

Pierce County — G. Bennet, J. H. Cowles, J. H. Decker, W. H. 
Hail, and William Maddox. 

Forney County — W. A. Finney, J. M. Wood. 

Richardson County — D. M. Johnston, J. A. Singleton. 

Officers of the House — J. W. Paddock, Chief Clerk; G. L. 


Eayre, Assistant Clerk ; J. L. Gibbs, Sergeant-at-Arms ; B. B. Thomp- 
son, Doorkeeper. 

Napoleon B. Gidding was elected delegate to Congress at the same 
election that the Legislature was chosen. 

The several counties were divided into three Judicial Districts. 

A capitol building was completed in Omaha in January, 1858. 

Mark "W. Izard was appointed Governor in February, 1855, and 
William A. Bichardson in April, 1857, who resigned in 1858. J. 
Sterling Morton was then Secretary, and became the acting Governor 
until the appointment of Samuel Black, in 1859. He closed the line 
of Democratic Governors for Nebraska, and was succeeded by Alvin 
Saunders, of Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, who was appointed by Abraham 
Lincoln, in 1861. Governor Saunders was succeeded by David But- 
ler, in 1867, when Nebraska became a State. 

The question of organizing a State government was voted on in 
March, 1860, and the people rejected the proposition to erect a State, 
by a vote of 1,987 to 1,877. Congress passed the enabling act in 
1864 for the admission of Nebraska. The Territorial Legislature 
framed a constitution in 1866, which was ratified at an election held 
on June 21st of the same year. Congress passed an admission act July 
28th 5 which was vetoed by Andrew Johnson, who vetoed a similar bill 
in January, 1867; but it was passed over his veto on February 8th and 
9th. There was one condition to this act : Nebraska must assent to " no 
denial of the elective franchise, or any other right, to any person by 
reason of race or color." The Legislature promptly ratified this con- 
dition, on February 20th, and President Johnson proclaimed this com- 
pliance on March 1, 1867. 

As soon as the State was admitted, the Legislature decided to remove 
the capital from Omaha, which was accomplished by commissioners, in 
October, 1867. A small hamlet named Lancaster, in Lancaster county, 
was chosen by the commissioners and approved by the Legislature. 
The new capital was named Lincoln, after Abraham Lincoln. 


David Butler had been elected Governor of the proposed new State 
in 1866, and now entered upon his duties as the first Governor of the 
State. He was reelected October 8, 1868, and October 13, 1870, but 
was impeached and removed from office on June, 2, 1871, and Secre- 


retary William H. James acted as Governor until after the regular elec- 
tion of 1872. Robert W. Furnas was then elected Governor, and 
installed on January 13, 1873. He was succeeded in 1875 by Silas 
Garber, who was re-elected, and served until January 9, 1879, when 
Albinus Nance was inducted into the office, and held it until January 
4, 1883. James W. Dawes was the State's Chief Executive thence 
until succeeded by John M. Thayer, January 6, 1887, who is now serv- 
ing his second term. Gov. Thayer is one of Nebraska's citizens 
most distinguished for long and honorable service. He was born in 
Bellingham, Massachusetts, and is the son of Elias and Ruth (Staples) 
Thayer. He graduated from Brown University, in 1847, having 
studied law. He removed to Nebraska in 1854, and settled at Omaha, 
near where he farmed for several years. He entered politics in 1855, 
becoming a candidate for Congress, but was beaten by Fenner Fer- 
guson, perhaps the most successful politician of Territorial times in 
Nebraska. He was defeated for the same office in 1860 by Samuel 
G. Daily, but was elected to the Territorial Legislature in 1860, and 
sei'ved during the term of 1860-1. 

In 1855 he was elected Brigadier-General of the Territorial militia 
by the Legislature, and that year led a company of 150 men against 
the troublesome Pawnee Indians, and again in 1859 led 194 men, with 
a piece of artillery, against the same Indians, capturing an entire camp. 
He was also employed in peace negotiations with the Indians. This 
gave him quite a military experience. 

In 1861 he was instrumental in raising and organizing the First 
Regiment of Nebraska Volunteer Infantry, of which he was com- 
missioned Colonel. After seeing some service in Missouri, he was 
sent with a brigade to help Gen. Grant at Fort Donelson, command- 
ing the Second Brigade of Wallace's Division in that battle, aud also 
at the battle of Shiloh. For able aud gallant conduct in these two 
memorable actions he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier-General. 
At the time Sherman stormed Chickasaw bayou, in his attempt to 
approach Vicksburg from the north, General Thayer led one of the 
most important of the storming columns, having a horse shot under 
him. He participated in the Vicksburg Campaign, helped Sherman 
to capture Jackson, and then assisted to reduce Pemberton at Vicks- 
burg. Here he was appointed Major-General of Volunteers for gal- 
lant conduct, Subsequently he was engaged in a campaign with 



General Steele in Arkansas, and near the close of the war he was 
placed in command of the Army of the Frontier, to subdue the In- 
dians, who had been terrorizing the West with their barbarities. 

He was elected United States Senator for Nebraska by the Legisla- 
ture of 1866, when it was thought the Territory would be at once ad- 
mitted as a State; but it not being admitted until the following year, 
he did not take his seat until March, 1867. He drew the four-year 
term, and Thomas W. Tipton the six-year term. In 1875 he was 
appointed Territorial Governor of Wyoming, and served one term. 

In 1886 he was elected Governor of Nebraska by about 25,000 
majority, and was reelected in 1888, making about thirty-four years 
since he began to distinguish himself in the public service of the 
Territory of Nebraska. He is the most distinguished military man 
of this State, and is Nebraska's oldest living United States Senator. 
His military service alone has given him a national reputation. 

He was married to Miss Mary T. Allen, a lady of ability and re- 
finement, who was the daughter of the Eev. John Allen, a minister 
of the Baptist church in Massachusetts. Mr. John M. Thayer jr. is 
the Governor's private secretary. 

The growth of Nebraska has been steady and rapid, as the develop- 
ment of population will indicate. In 1855 the census returns gave 
the Territory a population of 4,494. In 1856 the inhabitants were set 
down at 10,716. In 1860 the number had grown to 28,841. By 
1870 there were 122,993. In 1875 the population had advanced to 
246,280, and by the census of 1880, Nebraska had 452,542 people. 
In 1885 the enumeration showed an aggregate of 740,645, and the 
election returns of 1888 indicated a population of about 1,200,000. 
In other words, the increase from 1870 to 1880 was nearly 300 per 
centum, and that from 1880 to 1890 will approximate close to 200 
per centum. By the year 1900, Nebraska will doubtless have quite 
2,000,000 population, and her wealth will have increased accordingly. 

In fact, the development of the resources of the State has fully kept 
pace with the growth of population, and in some features has outrun 
the rate of settlement. 

In 1871 a constitutional convention assembled at the capitol, on 
June 5th, and adjourned August 19th. The people refused to adopt 
the constitution framed, on the 19th of the following September. In 


the summer of 1875, a second convention framed another constitution, 
which was adopted by the people at the October election following. 
This constitution provided that there should be eighty-four Represen- 
tatives and thirty Senators, until 1880, when the number should be 
regulated by law ; but the Senate should not exceed thirty-three and 
the House should not exceed one hundred. The first Legislature under 
this constitution assembled on the first Monday in January, 1877. 
John M. Thayer and Thomas W. Tipton were chosen United States 
Senators in 1867, the former to serve until 1871, and the latter until 
1875. The roster of United States Senators elected since the State 
was admitted is as follows : 


John M. Thayer, 1867-71. 
Thomas W. Tipton, 1867-75. 
Phineas W. Hitchcock, 1871-77. 
Algernon S. Paddock, 1875-81. 
Alvin Saunders, 1877-83. 

C. H. Van Wyck, 1881-87. 
Charles F. Manderson, 1883-89. 
Algernon S. Paddock, 1887-93. 
Charles F. Manderson, 1889-95. 


Napoleon B. Gidding, December 12, 1854.1 Experience Estabrook, October 11, 1859. 
Bird B. Chapman, November 6, 1855. Samuel G. Dailey, October 9, 1860. 
Fenner Ferguson, August 3, 1857. I Phineas W. Hitchcock, October 11, 1864. 


Frank Welch, 1877. Died in office. 

Thomas J. Majors, 1878-9. To till va- 

E. K. Valentine, 1879-81; the 46th 

E. K. Valentine, 1881-83; the 47th 

T. M. Marquett, 1865-67; the 39th Con- 

John Taffe, 1867-69; the 40th Congress. 

John Taffe, 1869-71; the 41st Congress. 

John Taffe, 18J1-73; the 42d Congress. 

Lorenzo Crounse, 1873-75; the 43rd 

Lorenzo Crounse, 1875-77; the 44th 

For the 48th Congres, 1883-85, there were elected: 
A. J. Weaver, for the First District. I E. K. Valentine, for the Third District. 
James Laird, for the Second District. 

For the 49th Congress, 1 885-87, there were elected : 
A. J. Weaver, for the First District. I George W. E. Dorsey, for the Third Dis- 

James Laird, for the Second District. trict. 

For the 50th Congress, 1887-89, there were elected : 
John A. McShane, for the first District. I George W. E. Dorsey, for the Third Dis- 
James Laird, for the Second District. | trict. 


For the 51st Congress, 1889-91, there were elected: 
W. J. Connell, for the First District. I George "W. E. Dorsey, for the Third Dis- 
James Laird, for the Second District. | trict 

Nebraska is in the eighth United States Court Circuit, composed 
of Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas, and 
Colorado. The court officers for both the United States District and 
Circuit Courts are as subjoined : 

David J. Brewer, Circuit Judge. 
Elmer S. Dundy, District Judge. 
George E. Pritchell, District Attorney. 

Brad D. Slaughter, Marshal. 

Elmer D. Frank, Clerk Circuit Court. 

Elmer S. Dundy jr., Clerk Dist. Court. 

Hon. Brad D. Slaughter, who is now the United States Marshal 
for the District of Nebraska, was commissioned on the 1 9th of March, 
1889. He is one of the best known public men of this State, and his 
administrative ability in a position of this kind is hardly excelled by 
any man in the State. 

His father was the Eev. W. B. Slaughter, D. D., and his mother 
was a daughter of Rev. E. Buck, both ministers being members of 
the Geneseo Conference of the M. E. Church of New York. 

Brad D. Slaughter was born in Wayne county, New York, on No- 
vember 12, 1844. His father removed to Chicago, where Master 
Brad was educated in the city public schools, and where he learned 
the printers' trade and graduated as a newspaper correspondent. For 
this reason he is always most accommodating to correspondents, as 
any newspaper man knows who has reported the House during recent 
Legislative sessions. 

He enlisted in the Union army with his father, who was captain of 
Company G, 39th Illinois Volunteer Infantry, which rendezvoused 
at Chicago. Afterward he enlisted in Company K, of the 67th Illi- 
nois Volunteer Infantry, and gave faithful service to the cause of the 
Union throughout the war. 

At the close of the great conflict he removed to Nebraska City, 
where he married in 1866. He made his residence in Omaha for a 
time, and later removed to Lincoln, where he lived until 1879. At 
the close of the Legislative session of that year he took up his resi- 
dence in Fullerton, Nance county, which county he had been instru- 
mental in bringing into existence. 

He was first elected Chief Clerk of the House of Representatives of 
the Nebraska Legislature in 1877, and he has held this position at 


every succeeding term except that of 1885. In this office he distin- 
guished himself for the exceedingly able and thorough management 
he gave to its intricate affairs. He was also recognized as a very skill- 
ful parliamentarian, and many a time he has rescued the House and 
Speaker from a complication in the proceedings, the run of which he 
never seemed to lose. The House of the Twenty-first Legislature 
presented him with a beautiful silver tea service, as a token of the 
esteem of the members for his careful work as recording officer and 
the general esteem that body entertained for him personally. He is 
not a man of many words, and accepted the gift in a brief and perti- 
nent speech, in which he used a sentence substantially like the follow- 
ing : " In all duties I have been called upon to attend to, I have made 
it a rule to do the work just exactly as near right as I knew how." 
This sentence contains the explanation of his success and that of all 
men who sustain themselves in responsible positions. 

In 1880 he was appointed Supervisor of the United States census, 
his district including the entire South Platte section of Nebraska. It 
fell to his province to appoint, supply, instruct, and obtain reports 
from 363 enumerators, but his management of this responsible and 
difficult office was as prudent and efficient as could be possible under 
the circumstances. Few supervisors performed better service, and of 
the sixty-one United States Marshals in the United States it may 
safely be doubted whether one will prove more faithful, able and suc- 
cessful than Marshal Brad D. Slaughter, of Nebraska. 

Nebraska as a Territory and a State has had eleven Governors and 
four acting Governors. The Territorial Governors were as follows : 

Francis Burt, 1 October 16, 1854. 
Mark W. Izard, February 20, 1855. 
W. A. Richardson, 2 January 12,1858. 

Samuel W. Black, May 2, 1858. 
Alvin Saunders, May 15, 1861. 

The State Governors have been six in number, as follows : 

David Butler, 3 February 21, 1867. 
Robert W. Furnas, January 13, 1873. 
Silas Garber, January 11, 1875. 

Albinus Nance, January, 9, 1879. 
James W. Dawes, Jauuary 4, 1883. 
John M. Thayer, January 6, 1887. 

i Died in office, October 18, 1854; office filled by Secretary Thomas B. Cuming until ap- 
pointment of Governor Izard. 

2 Resigned, the office being filled by Secretary J. Sterling Morton until 1 arrival ot Gover- 
nor Black. 

3 Elected in 1866, but did not become Governor until February 21, 1867, ov>ing to the delay 
in admitting Nebraska Into the Union. Secretary W. H. James acted as Governor from June 2, 
1871, until installation of Governor Furnas, Jauuary 13, 1873. 

H. H. Shedd, 1885-89. 

Geo. D. Meiklejohn, 1889-91. 


Nebraska has had but five Lieutenant-Governors since she became 
a State, as follows : 

Othman A. Abbott, 1877-79. 
Edmund C. Cams, 1879-83. 
A. W. Agee, 1883-S5. 

The Territorial Secretaries were four in number, three of whom, 
Cuming. Morton, and Paddock, became acting Governors. They were : 

Thomas B. Cuming, 1 August 1 3, 1854. I J. Sterling Morton, 3 July 12, 1858. 
John B. Motley, 2 March 23, 1858. | Alg. S. Paddock, 4 May 6, 1861. 

The Secretaries, since Nebraska became a State, have been as noted 
in the subjoined list: 

S. J. Alexander, January 9, 1879. 
Edward P. Eoggen, January 4, 1883. 
Gilbert L. Laws, January 6, 1887. 

Thomas P. Kennard, February 21, 1867. 
Wm. H. James, 6 January 10, 1871. 
John J. Gosper, January 13, 1873. 
Bruno Tzschuck, January 11, 1875. 

Gilbert L. Laws, now Secretary of State for Nebraska, was the 
sixth of a family of eleven children, and was born on a farm in 
Richland county, Illinois, March 11, 1838. 

His father, James Laws, was born near Wilmington, North Caro- 
lina, in 1801, of Scotch-Irish parentage, his father being a Scotch- 
man and his mother an Irish woman. He removed with his parents 
to Southern Illinois, and in time, by industry and economy, became 
a large farmer and stock raiser, supplying in part the Indian Agency 
at Chicago with beef cattle. The corn from his own and neighbor- 
ing farms was by him shipped in flat-boats down the Wabash and so 
on to New Orleans for a market. Opening farms and planting or- 
chards, building houses and bridges, constructing roads and operating 
mills, taxed not only his own energies, but kept at work a number of 
men settled about him, who were constantly in his employ. 

In religious faith he was a Campbellite, uniting with that church 
in early manhood. 

Politically, he was an ardent Whig, and a great admirer of Henry 
Clay, becoming in later years a radical Republican, and so intolerant 

1 Was Acting Governor from October 18, 1854, to February 20, 1855, and from October 25, 
1S75, to January 12, 1858. Died March 12, 1858. 

2 Acting Secretary until the arrival of J. Sterling Morton . 

■> Acting Governor from December 5, 1858, to May 2, 1859, and from February 24, 1860, to 1861. 
4 Acting Goveinor from May, 1861, and so continued during most of the term of Gov. 
Saunders, or until 1867. 

6 Was Acting Governor from June 2, 1871, to January 13, 1873. 


in his views during the war that he regarded every Democrat as a pub- 
lic enemy, and would not exchange the common courtesies of neigh- 
bors with any member of that party. 

The mother of G. L. Laws was Lucinda Calhoun, a second cousin 
to the statesman of that name. She was born in Abbeyville, South 
Carolina, in 1806. She, too, was a Campbellite, and her whole life 
was sacredly dedicated to the discharge of motherly cares and Chris- 
tian duties. 

G. L. Laws spent the first seven years of his life on his father's 
farm in Eichland county, attending school a few weeks in winter 
when old enough, dropping corn and helping " shear sheep " in the 
spring, carrying water and other drinks to "the hands" in summer, 
and "shucking the down row" in the fall. In school he became 
somewhat noted as a speller, and was a fair reader, these being the 
only branches taught boys under ten years of age in those days in 
that country. 

In 1845 the family removed to Iowa county, Wisconsin, bought a 
tract of land, and opened a farm. Here were no schools, and over 
five years elapsed before an opportunity offered to attend school again. 
In 1847 he worked a lead mine on the halves. In 1850 his father 
traded his farm for a tract of land on the Wisconsin river, where he 
opened a ferry, now known as " Laws's Ferry," and where he kept a 
lumber yard, the subject of this tale being obliged to make himself 
useful as ferryman and salesman in the yard. 

In the winter of 1851 and 1852 he chopped cord wood and split 
rails. Here, in the summer of 1853, he crossed the river and walked 
three miles morning and evening to attend a district school. In the 
winter of 1854 he "did chores for his board" and attended the same 
school. In June, 1855, he left home without consulting the family, 
for the sole purpose of making it possible to attend better schools for 
a longer term each year. During June and July he put in a number 
of weeks of very hard work for a good deacon of a chm*ch, for which 
he received no pay, and this fact may have affected his whole religious 

During the years 1856 and 1857 he worked a short time on a farm, 
rafted railroad ties, helped build the Illinois Central with barroAv and 
spade, "rolled sugar" on a steam-boat, cooked for a crew of men in 
a logging camp, chopped saw-logs, drove saw-logs, and run a saw- 


mill, rafted and run lumber, landing iu St. Louis in August of 1857, 
with a large "fleet" of lumber, which he could not sell, and was 
obliged to start a lumber yard in that city, which he did on Ninth 
street and Cass avenue. His experience as a ferryman, with some- 
thing of an aptitude for such work, made him an expert riverman, 
and brought him from $3.00 to §10.00 per day during spring and 
summer months, rafting lumber down the Wisconsin river to Missis- 
sippi towns. After the first winter, during which he was a cook, 
studying meantime, and receiving much valuable assistance from the 
"boss," who was a graduate of Yale, he attended school winters and 
such parts of fall and spring terms as he could until twenty years 
old, when, after paying yearly some small debts for those in a meas- 
ure dependent upon him, he found himself the possessor of $300.00 
in cash. This fund enabled him to quit the more lucrative but less 
desirable lines of labor, and turn his attention to teaching school, re- 
versing the order of former years, now working winters and attend- 
ing school summers. He enjoyed, for longer and shorter terms, the 
advantages afforded by Hascall University, at Mazo Manie ; at Silsby 
Academy, at Richland City ; and at Milton College, all in Wisconsin ; 
but, except the latter, all very poor and without libraries or appara- 
tus. At one of the academies he finished a course in trigonometry 
and surveying where the only instrument for use was an old survey- 
or's compass with a broken needle. The teachers were all educated 
gentlemen, and some of them able men, earnest, honest, and patriotic 
in their efforts to establish "seats of learning" in the West. 

The winter of 1860-61 he was employed as principal of the schools 
at Richland Center, where he was accredited a very successful teacher. 

This was at the opening of the Civil War. "Men and steel" were 
wanted for national defense. In March, 1861, Mr. Laws signed his 
name to a paper, pledging his services provided the company was 
called into service before he became located in the University at 
Madison, Wisconsin, where he had arranged to complete his educa- 
tion. His school closed on Friday, the 2d of May, and the next 
morning a dispatch was received calling the company into service. 

On such little threads of time and circumstance hang the destinies 
of men ! 

Mr. Laws went to the front with his company as its Fourth Ser- 
geant, and with a military life comprising the usual routine, he 


drifted into the Army of the Potomac, and his regiment was assigned 
to General Hancock's corps, and with McClellan's great army entered 
upon the Peninsular Campaign. Almost on the anniversary of his 
call to the front, May 15, 1862, Mr. Laws was in the field, engaged in 
the Battle of Williamsburg. He was twice wounded in that action, 
once in the left arm and again in the left ankle. With 1,200 other 
wounded men, of both armies and several nationalities, Mr. Laws 
was taken on board the steamer "Vanderbilt," which was moored 
above Yorktown, and all were conveyed to Baltimore, Maryland, for 
hospital care and surgical treatment. On the voyage those twelve 
hundred men had no aid or care except that given by four Sisters of 
Charity, who labored for the comfort of the suffering soldiers with 
an impartial fidelity that was the perfection of heroic Christian for- 
titude. No man was neglected; all were treated precisely alike. 
Those faithful women stayed at their posts as long as they could stand 
up, and the men almost forgot the agonies of their own wounds in 
grateful admiration of those most noble attendants. Mr. Laws to 
this day regards their grand devotion to duty as one of the most gen- 
uine and splendid exhibitions of human excellence that he has ever 
known. For eight days Mr. Laws's wounds went without surgical 
attention. The bones of his ankle being shattered to pieces, the flesh 
had begun to decompose when treatment was at last begun, and his 
leg above the ankle had to be amputated. Even with this severe 
remedy the battle for life was a terrible one, and his friends hardly 
expected to see him rise from his bed again. He lay on his back in 
the hot hospital until the processes of his spine protruded, and his 
flesh wasted away until he Aveighed but little over seventy pounds. 

The ladies of Baltimore carried on the most perfect hospital service 
organized anywhere in the Nation. Fifteen thousand of them were 
banded together, and every day they visited every sick and wounded 
soldier, administering comforts and delicacies until they, in matters of 
diet, actually killed some of the men with kindness. This they did 
without regard to which army the soldier fought in. But amongst 
themselves they enjoyed a partisan hate that was not excelled any- 
where in the United States. Under their gracious care Mr. Laws 
continued from the 13th day of May until the 29th of July, part of 
the time hovering in the very shadow of the Dark Valley; but his 
strong constitution enabled him to pass the crisis safely. 


On the 29th of July his brother came from Wisconsin and easily 
took him in his arms to the train which conveyed them back to his 
home county. In September he was able to get out on crutches, for 
the first time in over four months. On that day he went to the 
county seat to attend the Republican county convention, at the earnest 
solicitation of the loyal people. The moment the convention was 
organized a resolution was passed, unanimously and amid much en- 
thusiasm, providing that G. L. Laws could take his choice of the 
county offices, and his selection would be ratified by the people. 

Mr. Laws agreed to accept the office of County Clerk, and the nom- 
ination was given him by the unanimous voice of the convention. He 
was elected on November 4, 1862, by a majority of 843, when the 
average Republican majority of the county was about 300. He was 
reelected in 1864, and again in 1866, and served six years in that 
office. At the expiration of his term he was appointed postmaster of 
Richland Center, which position he filled with ability until April, 
1876, when he resigned for the purpose of removing to Nebraska. 

Mr. Laws has enjoyed enough newspaper experience to fully entitle 
him to wear the badge of the craft. In November, 1863, in company 
with Samuel C. Hyatt and William J. Waggoner, he bought the 
Richland County Observer. Although this was the first experience 
of these gentlemen in newspaper work, they made a live and success- 
ful paper of it. All were soldiers and fast friends. On May 12, 1864, 
he sold his interest in the paper to a brother of William J. Waggoner 
— James H. Waggoner. On August 8, 1867, the Observer and The 
Live Republican were consolidated under the name of the Richland 
County Republican, of which Mr. G. L. Laws owned a one-fourth in- 
terest, in company with James H. Waggoner, who owned one-half 
and managed the paper, and C. H. Smith. In a few months Messrs. 
Laws and Smith sold their interest in the Republican to George D. 
Stevens. On September 1, 1874, Mr. Laws again bought a half in- 
terest in the Republican from Mr. Waggoner, and he continued a joint 
proprietor of the paper with W. M. Fogo for two years, and finally 
sold his interest to O. G. Munson, and so ended his newspaper work 
until he became a citizen of Nebraska. 

Incidentally it may be said that Mr. Laws was ever a very busy man, 
If he ever had any months of idleness from the age of six years to the 
present time, the records do not reveal when it was. Besides the evi- 


dences of his industry already related, we find him president of the board 
of town trustees of Richland Center in 1869. About the same time he 
had a business connection with a real estate firm. During this busy 
period of his life, if one period could be much more busy than an- 
other, he was one of a board of five trustees who gave personal atten- 
tion to the erection of the First Baptist Church of Eichland Center. 
This structure was of brick, on a high stone basement, and cos* 
$6,000, a very large sum for the pioneers of that locality to raise at 
that date. The work was delayed from time to time because of a lack 
of funds, but the trustees held on tenaciously and finally completed 
the building, which was the finest church structure in the county as 
late as 1884. The name of G. L. Laws also appears on the roll of 
Masters of Richland Lodge No. 66, A. F. and A. M., of Richland Cen- 
ter, which was organized in 1856. 

In April, 1876, Mr. Laws resigned the office of postmaster of Rich- 
land Center, and removed to Nebraska. He located at Orleans, in 
Harlan county, at which point he purchased the Republican Valley 
Sentinel, and took up the editorial pen for a fourth time. He soon 
became secretary of the Republican Valley Land Association, which 
position he held until about 1 880, when he was succeeded by J. D. 
Macfarland, of Lincoln. In 1881 he sold the Sentinel to Wenn & 
Knight. From 1881 he was engaged as a clerk in the land office at 
Bloomington, and also assisted in a bank at Orleans during a part of 
this period. 

He was appointed and confirmed registrar of the Federal land office 
at McCook on March 3, 1883, and took possession of that office on 
June 15th following. He administered the affairs of this responsible 
post with unquestioned efficiency until he was removed by Grover 
Cleveland, on November 2, 1886. He had already been nominated 
by the Republican party of the State for the office of Secretary of 
State, and on the next day after he left the land office he was elected 
Secretary of State over Richard Thompson, Democrat, (who ran ahead 
of his ticket,) by 21,450 votes, the total vote cast being less than 139,- 
000. Mr. Laws administered the affairs of this very important office 
with fidelity and success, combining, as it does, responsible relations 
to nearly all the State institutions, the State Board of Transportation, 
and other State executive boards, these complex relations calling for 
large executive ability and sound judgment. He performed the work 


of his first term so well, however, that he was .renominated for a sec- 
ond term by acclamation by the Republican State Convention of 1888, 
and was re-elected by nearly 28,000 majority. The present adminis- 
tration of Secretary Laws has been able in an eminent degree, and 
he ranks as one of the very safest and best officials that Nebraska 
possesses to-day. 

Though somewhat out of chronological order, yet, on the principle 
of reserving the best things for the conclusion, we will here refer to 
the marriage of Mr. Laws. This took place at the former residence of 
the bride's father, Mr. Isaac Lawrence, in Bear creek valley, in Rich- 
land county, "Wisconsin, October 25, 1868. The bride was Miss 
Josephine Lawrence, and, as Mrs. G. L. Laws, is too well known to 
Lincoln society to require an introduction. Mr. Laws was one of 
eleven children. His own children are three in number, all daughters. 
Their names are Gertrude H., Theodosia G, and Helen Lucile Laws. 

The Territorial Auditors were six in number, as follows: 

Robert C. Jordan, August 2, 1858. 
Wm. E. Harvey, October 8, 1861. 

Charles B. Smith, March 16, 1855. 
Samuel L. Campbell, August 3, 1857, 
William E. Moore, June 1, 1858. 

John Gillespie, October 10, 1865. 

The State Auditors have been six, Mr. Gillespie continuing from 
Territorial times into the State administration about six years. The 
list of State Auditors is as shown below : 

John Gillespie, February, 1867. 
Jefferson B. Weston, January 13, 1873. 
F. W. Liedtke, January 9, 1879. 

John Wallichs,i November 12, 1880. 
H. A. Babcock, January 8, 1885. 
Thomas H. Benton, January 3, 1889. 

Hon. Thomas H. Benton, the present State Auditor of Nebraska, 
was installed in the very responsible position he now occupies on the 
third day of January, 1889. He was then but a little over thirty 
years of age, the youngest man who ever held such an important 
office in this State, and one of the few who have been elevated to so 
high a place of trust in the United States at so early an age. And 
in making him their choice for Auditor his fellow citizens exhibited 
a confidence in his ability to discharge the difficult duties of the place 
that was remarkable, as he received the highest vote of any state 
officer, notwithstanding the fact that a number of able men and tried 
officials were associated with him as candidates. 

1 Appointed to till vacaucy. 

■ 4 


Mr. Benton was born in the city of New Haven, Connecticut, Oc- 
tober 17, 1858. His father, William I. Benton, was engaged in the 
practice of law when a young man, but later in life followed agricul- 
tural pursuits. He was a plain, sturdy citizen, and with his wife, 
Mrs. Emaline Benton, believed in the good old customs and princi- 
ples for which the descendants of the New England Puritans are dis- 
tinguished. Both his parents were Americans, possessing the staunch 
virtues of the people who founded the civilization of the Western 
world, along the shore of the Atlantic. 

The State Auditor spent his boyhood on a farm until he reached 
the age of ten years, attending to the usual duties of farm life, and 
at the same time cultivating- the advantages afforded by the common 
schools of the locality where he lived. At the age of ten, and in 1868, 
his father removed to Nebraska, and located in Fremont, becoming one 
of the pioneers of the State, and thus initiating his son, the future State 
Auditor, into the severe school of practical western farm life in the 
early days of Nebraska. He worked on a farm in summer time, and 
attended school during winters, at Fremont, until he reached his 
thirteenth year, when he spent a year, that of 1872-3, at Doane Col- 
lege, at Crete, Nebraska. 

In the summer of 1873 young Benton entered a telegraph office at 
Fremont, where he spent nearly a year, and became a practical oper- 
ator. The following spring he became recorder in the county clerk's 
office at Fremont, then in his sixteenth year, and, perhaps, the young- 
est recorder of important public instruments who ever performed 
such work in Nebraska. But young Benton always made it a point 
to do his work well, and filled the position with credit to himself un- 
til January 1, 1877, when he secured the position of clerk in the 
office of State Auditor J. B.- Weston. This he filled acceptably until 
the summer of 1877, when he accepted a place as salesman in the book 
store of Arthur Gibson, of Fremont. Here he remained until the 
spring of 1878, when he was given the post of book-keeper for a 
foundry at Fremont, and discharged the duties of that position until 
December of that year. 

On the first day of January, 1879, at the age of twenty-one years, 
he was elected second assistant clerk of the House, and discharged the 
duties of that office with marked ability until the close of February, 
when he was given the position of book-keeper by State Auditor F. 
W. Liedtke. 




In this situation Mr. Benton was at home, his ability and skill as 
an accountant being even at this time beyond question. He continued 
to occupy this responsible post during the entire term of Auditor 
Liedtke, and that of his successor, John Wallichs. 

On January 7, 1885, H. A. Babcock, then State Auditor, selected 
Mr. Benton for the position of Deputy State Auditor. In this im- 
portant trust Mr. Benton acquitted himself with all that thorough- 
ness, prudence and tact which the duties of an efficient administration 
of the duties of the place required, and to such a degree of success 
that when he became a candidate for the office of State Auditor, in 
the summer of 1888, the most searching criticisms of his opponents 
could not reveal a blemish in his integrity, nor a shortcoming in the 
execution of the work that had been assigned him. He was nom- 
inated against such strong competitors as John Peters, of Albion, 
and Henry Groshans, of Sutton. His election was accomplished by 
the highest aggregate vote received by any State officer on the ticket, a 
circumstance which. affords Mr. Benton occasion for a large degree of 
just pride. 

On the third day of January, 1889, Mr. Benton was duly installed 
in the office of State Auditor of Nebraska, and he has discharged the 
complex responsibilities of this important position, since that date, 
with conspicuous fidelity to duty and the high manifestation of esteem 
expressed for him by the people of the State at the polls. 

Hon. Thos. H. Benton is a relative of the famous Senator Thomas 
H. Benton, of Missouri, who so ably and honorably represented the 
people of his State in eminent positions of trust for a third of a cen- 

Mr. Benton was married to Miss Fanny McManigal, of Lincoln, 
on the 8th of August, 1881, and is a brother-in-law of Hon. G. W. E. 
Dorsey, Member of Congress from the Third District. He esteems 
his honors highly; but his little daughter, Hazel M. Benton, born Au- 
gust 24, 1 886, is regarded by Mr. Benton, next to Mrs. Benton, as the 
best of all his treasures. 

The three Territorial Treasurers are noted in the annexed list: 

B. P. Eankin, March 16, 1855. I Augustus Kountze, October 8, 1861. 

We. W. Wyman, November 6, 1855. 

Mr. Kountze was continued in office by the State. The list of State 
Treasurers is here shown : 



Augustus Kountze, February, 1867. 
James Sweet, January 11, 1869. 
Henry A. Koenig, January 10, 1871. 
J. C. McBride, January 11,1875. 

George M. Bartlett, January 9, 1879. 
Phelps D. Stnrdevant, January 4, 1883. 
Charles H. Willard, January 8, 1885. 
John E. Hill, January 3, 1889. 

Hon. John E. Hill, the Treasurer for the State of Nebraska, is by 
virtue of his office a member of the State Board of Transportation, 
the State Board of Educational Lands and Funds, the State Board 
of Public Lands and Buildings, the State Board of Purchases and 
Supplies, the State Board of Equalization, the State Board of Phar- 
macy, the State Board of Printing, the State Board of Banking, and 
the State Normal Board. In other words, he is a member of the main 
executive boards of the State. 

As biography is the foundation of history, a brief sketch of Mr. 
Hill's life is very appropriate to a history of Lincoln, in which he is 
now a prominent figure. 

His father's name was Samuel Hill, who was born in Washing- 
ton county, Pennsylvania. He was descended on his father's side 
probably from the Scotch. His mother, a grandmother of the State 
Treasurer, was named Van Ordestrand. She was probably a native 
of Holland. Samuel Hill was apprenticed, when young, to learn the 
hatter's trade, and spent four years "bound out" at this occupation. 
Then he followed the life of a farmer, in Ohio, and later in life be- 
came a merchant. He was a prudent, cautious, business man. He 
spent his closing years at Hey worth, Illinois, where he died, in 1882. 
During his life he held several important public positions. 

The mother of the Treasurer was, before marriage, Miss Pamela 
Edgar. She was a woman of high spirit and energy, courageous, 
persistent, devoted to duty and success. She was born at Berlin, 
Holmes county, Ohio. On her mother's side she was descended from 
the Scotch. Her father was of Irish nativity. His ancestors made a 
name in the military history of Ireland, Col. Edgar and others of 
the name being brave defenders of the cause of Ireland's independ- 
ence. Her father was a prominent Whig politician of Ohio, and 
was a member of the early Legislature of that State. Her death oc- 
curred at Heyworth, Illinois, in 1871. 

The Treasurer, John E. Hill, was born in Berlin, Ohio. He spent 
his boyhood on a farm, working in summer, and going to school in 
winter, like most farmer boys had to do, from 1840 to 1865. When 


seventeen years of age he removed, with his father's family, to De- 
fiance county, Ohio, near Farmer's Center, where he continued to 
follow agricultural pursuits in summer, but taught district school in 
the winter. This was the routine of his life until 1861, with the ex- 
ception of one year, which he spent at West Unity Academy, near his 

In 1861 he enlisted in the 14th Ohio Infantry, but was soon after- 
ward prostrated with typhoid fever, and did not recover his health 
for nearly a year. The perilous condition of the Union in 1862 
stirred the blood of the men of his home region, and early in August 
they assembled and formed a company by general agreement. The 
work of its organization required only four days, and at the close of 
the fourth the company chose John E. Hill its captain, unanimously. 
On the fifth day the company reported for duty at Toledo, Ohio, and 
was assigned to Company F, of the 111th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, 
commanded by Col. J. R. Bond. The regiment soon began duty un- 
der Gen. Buel, at Louisville, Kentucky. After moving to Frankfort 
and thence to Bowling Green, Company F and one other company, 
under the command of Capt. J. E. Hill, were assigned to Fort Baker, 
Kentucky, of which Capt. Hill had charge during the winter of 1862 
and 1863. Here he was attacked by typhoid-pneumonia, and his life 
was despaired of for several days ; but he was able to take command 
of his company in the spring. The company next was engaged in 
the campaign in East Tennessee, and was with the first troops that 
entered Knoxville. This was the active contest to oppose the ad- 
vance of Longstreet, after Chickamauga. During the campaign in 
Tennessee, Capt. Hill was designated as Provost-Marshal by General 
Schofield, and had command of the captured towns of that State. 

The winter of 1863-64 was spent in East Tennessee, and then 
Captain Hill's command joined Sherman in his grand campaign of 
battles from Chattanooga to Atlanta, one of the longest periods of 
continued fighting in the history of the world. The guns of the two 
armies were not silent a day from the 9th of May until some time in 
September. On the first date named Captain Hill's company engaged 
the enemy at Buzzard's Roost, and he led his command into every 
important action from that point to Atlanta. It seemed to be the for- 
tune of his company to be in the hottest of nearly all the great battles 
of this memorable campaign, such as Ressaca, Peach Tree, Kenesaw, 


and Atlanta. When Atlanta fell Captain Hill's company was sent 
back with General George H. Thomas to meet Hood's desperate at- 
tempt to cut Sherman's communications, and here again Company F 
was frequently in the hottest of the fight, and suffered severely, es- 
pecially at Nashville and Franklin. In fact it was reduced to a mere 
skeleton of its former self. 

When Hood was overthrown the 111th Ohio was ordered to North 
Carolina to help Sherman crush Joseph E. Johnston, but the many 
months of constant exposure, nervous strain, privation, loss of rest, 
and long, hurried marches, had utterly broken the health of Captain 
Hill, and he was compelled to remain at Louisville and enter the hos- 
pital. It seemed that he was a physical wreck. After remaining in 
the hospital for some time, the board of physicians, without his 
knowledge, recommended his honorable discharge on account of phys- 
ical disability. This recommendation was complied with near the 
close of hostilities. 

When able to do so, he returned to Ohio, and soon afterward re- 
moved to Heyworth, Illinois, with his father's family. There he and 
his father entered into the mercantile business, under the firm name 
of Hill & Son. 

In 1866 he was married to Miss Laura Stewart, an estimable lady 
of Fairmont, West Virginia. He continued in business, with reason- 
able success, until 1871, when he felt that he could do better in a new 
and expanding country, and removed to Beatrice, Nebraska. 

He there engaged in the nursery and stock-raising business for four 
years. When Beatrice was organized under the law as a city of the 
first class, in 1872, Captain Hill became a member of the first city 
council. In 1875 he was elected County Clerk of Gage county, and 
was twice afterward reelected. After concluding his third term, he 
engaged in the grocery business for three years, and then devoted his 
time to growing fine stock. During this period he was a member of 
the Board of Supervisors of the county for two years, and of the 
Board of Education of Beatrice for six years, his last term closing in 
the spring of 1889. 

On February 1, 1887, Governor Thayer selected Captain Hill for 
his private secretary without giving the Captain any previous intima- 
tion of his intention. This position Captain Hill filled with efficiency 
until August 1, 1888, when he resigned to become a candidate for 


State Treasurer. He was nominated over twelve strong competitors, 
and was elected by nearly 28,000 majority, receiving the highest net 
majority of any candidate. He is now discharging the duties of this 
very responsible office with the same fidelity and ability which he has 
manifested in guarding the many duties that have been confided to his 
hands during the past twenty-seven years. 

He recently removed his family to Lincoln. It consists of his wife 
and six children, three of whom are now young ladies. Their names 
are Gertrude, Carolina, Anna, Herbert Stewart, Hannah, Winifred, 
and John E. He has one brother younger than himself, Mr. Fred 
H. Hill, who resides at the old homestead at Hayworth, Illinois. He 
also has a sister, likewise younger than himself, who resides at Stutt- 
gart, Arkansas. Her name is Mrs. Anna M. Lowe, and her son, Mr. 
Sam Lowe, is now an efficient clerk in the Governor's office. 

The Justices of the Supreme Court of the Territory, Federal Judges, 

were as follows : 

Fenner Ferguson, October 12, 1854. 
Augustus Hall, March 15, 1858. 
William Pitt Kellogg, May 27, 1861. 

William Kellogg, May 8, 1865. 
William A. Little,' 1866. 
Oliver P. Mason, 2 1866. 

The Justices of the Supreme Court of the State have been as fol- 
lows : 

Oliver P. Mason, February, 1867. 
George B. Lake, January 16, 1873. 
Daniel Gantt, 1 January 3, 1878. 
Samuel Maxwell, May 29, 1878. 

George B. Lake, January 5, 1882. 
Amasa Cobb, January 3, 1884. 
Samuel Maxweil, January 4, 1886. 
M. B. Reese, January 3, 1888. 

Following are the names of the Associate Justices and Judges of 

the Territorial Supreme Court : 

Edward E. Harden, December 4, 1854. Joseph Miller, April 9, 1859. 

James Bradley, October 25, 1854. ! William F. Lockwood, May 16, 1861. 

Samuel W. Black. i Joseph E. Streeter.' 

Eleazer Wakeley, April 22, 1857. . Elmer S. Dundy, 2 June 22, 1863. 

The Associate Justices and Judges of the State Supreme Court 
have been : 

George B. Lake, February 21, 1867. 
Lorenzo Crounse, February 21, 1867. 
Daniel Gantt, January 16, 1873. 

Samuel Maxwell, January 16, 1873. 
Amasa Cobb, May 29, 1878. 
M. B. Reese, January 3, 1884. 

iDied in office. 

2 Appointed to fill vacancy. 


The Clerks of the Supreme Court have been seven in number, as 
subjoined : 

William Kellogg jr., 1865. 

George Armstrong, 1867. 

Guy A. Brown, August 8, 1868. 

H. C. Anderson, 1856. 
Charles L. Salisbury, 1858. 
E. B. Chandler, 1859. 
JohnH. Kellom, 1861. 


James M. Woolworth, 1870. I Guy A. Brown, 1875. 

Lorenzo Crounse, 1873. 

The eight Attorney Generals of the State are named below : 

Champion S. Chase, 1867. 

Seth Robinson, 1 86!). 

Geo. H. Roberts, January 10, 1871. 

J. R. Webster, January 13, 1873. 

The five State Superintendents of Public Instruction have been as 

follows : 

Geo. H. Roberts, January 11, 1875. 
C. J. Dilworth, January 9, 1879. 
Isaac Powers jr., January 4, 18 ?3. 
William Leese, January 8, 1885. 

W. W. W. Jones, January 6, 1881. 
George B. Lane, January 6, 1887. 

Seth W. Beals, 1869. 

J. M. McKenzie, January 10, 1871. 

S. R. Thompson, January 4, 1877. 

There have been but four Commissioners of Public Lands and 
Buildings, namely : 

F. 51. Davis, January 4, 1877. I Joseph Scott, January 8, 1885. 

A. G. Kendall, January 6, 1881. | John Steen, January 3, 1889. 

Hon. John Steen, State Commissioner of Public Lands and Build- 
ings for Nebraska, was installed in that office on January 3, 1889. 
By virtue of his office he is a member of the State Board of Trans- 
portation, which possesses, to some extent, judicial authority, as well 
as administrative and executive powers, in the adjustment of the rela- 
tions of the railroad interests of the State, amicably and equitably, 
•with those of the people. He is also a member of the State Board of 
Educational Lands and Funds. He is Chairman of the State Board 
of Public Lands and Buildings. He is, in addition, one of the State 
Board of Purchases and Supplies, and he is also a member of the 
State Board of Pharmacy. These boards are all composed of the 
principal State officers, and Mr. Steen's work as a State official is of a 
difficult and highly responsible character. He is regarded as a most 
efficient and prudent officer, well worthy the high trust confided to 
his charge by the people. 


Mr. Steen has earned his present distinguished position by a life 
of hard work, patriotism, courage, and fidelity to duty and principle. 
A brief sketch of his personal history cannot fail to be of interest in 
a story of the history of Nebraska's capital, in which he is now a con- 
spicuous figure. 

He is a native of Norway. His father was Tron A. Steen, who was 
born near Christiana, Norway, January 17, 1804. His occupation 
was farming and manufacturing. Large importations of leaf tobacco 
were shipped into Christiana, and the father of Nebraska's Commis- 
sioner was engaged, in part, in making caddies in which to pack the 
manufactured tobacco. His father was always an anti-monarchist 
in political sentiment, and his sons inherited republican opinions from 

Mr. Steen's mother was Miss Ingeborg H. Torsdag before her mar- 
riage, and was born near Lillehammed, Norway, on January 31, 1804. 
Her marriage with Tron A. Steen took place near Christiana, on De- 
cember .25, 1827. She was a woman of great energy and industry, 
and never tired in making home pleasant for her children and in aid- 
ing to develop in them the spirit of manly character. She was a 
woman of strong and noble characteristics, one of the women who are 
naturally the mothers of heroes. 

John Steen was born on his father's farm, near Christiana, Norway, 
on October 21, 1841, and was the sixth of a family of eight sons. He 
spent his boyhood, while in Norway, in going to school, though he 
was taught industrious habits between terms. 

In 1853 his father's family emigrated to the United States, and 
settled on a farm near Decorah, in Winneshiek county, Iowa. Here 
Master Steen continued to go to school in winter, but applied him-- 
self to hard farm work in summer until 1861, taking the main con- 
trol of affairs, as his father was getting old. The heavier part of the 
work fell to his lot, and thus it happened that he cut most of the 
grain on the farm with the old-fashioned cradle, which, in the hands 
of a powerful man, had a good deal of the "poetry of motion" about 
it, if some other man had to swing it. Mr. Steen's muscles became 
compact, and his body well knit by the years of hard work he put 
in on the old home farm. 

On October 21, 1861, the day after he was twenty years old, Mr. 
Steen enlisted in Company G of the 12th Iowa Infantry, under Cap- 


tain C. C. Tapper, a West Point graduate. His regimental com- 
mander was Col. J. J. Woods, who had also had some training at 
West Point. Two of his brothers, Theodore and Henry, joined the 
same company, and they served through the war together. But all 
six of these patriotic brothers were in the Union Army. The three 
brothers in the 12th Iowa were in their country's service until Jan- 
uary, 1866. The regiment went into a camp of instruction at Du- 
buque, Iowa, until November 28th, and thence proceeded to Benton 
Barracks, Missouri. It left there January 29, 1862, and proceeded 
to Smithland, Kentucky, and from that point joined General Grant's 
expedition against Forts Henry and Donelson. The 12th Iowa as- 
sisted to take Fort Henry, which surrendered February 6, 1862. 
Then it proceeded to Fort Donelson, which it reached February 12th, 
and participated in the storming and capture of that stronghold as 
a part of Col. Cook's Brigade, of Gen. C. F. Smith's Division. Here 
it will be recalled that the 12th and 2d Iowa were on the extreme 
left, and that the 2d Iowa made a very gallant charge, and gained 
the first lodgment, and was immediately supported on its right by 
the 12th Iowa, which made almost as brilliant a dash as the 2d. 
This was on the 15th of February. Gen. Buckner surrendered the 
fort the next day, and the country was proud of Grant and the Iowa 
and Illinois troops, that had accomplished this brilliant achievement. 
Then the gallant 12th went to Pittsburg Landing, and assisted all 
through that terrible 6th of April, 1862, to hold the center of the 
line, in company with the famous Iowa Brigade, composed of the 2d, 
7th, 12th, and 14th, Iowa regiments, under the command of General 
J. M. Tuttle, and in the division of General W. H. L. Wallace. 
After this brigade had held the spot now historically illustrious as 
the " Hornets' Nest," and after the rebel force had broken away the 
Union line both to the right and left, and had surrounded the 12th 
and 14th and attacked them from all sides, they surrendered, and be- 
came prisoners of war. General Tuttle had ordered the brigade to 
fall back, but the order failed to reach the 12th and 14th. Just at 
the moment of capture Mr. Steen received a wound on his right side, 
under the right arm. The surrender took place between five and 
six o'clock in the evening. The prisoners were taken to Corinth, 
and for three days were without food. Of course the pangs of hun- 
ger became very keen with such a fast, after such a struggle as that 
of April 6th. 


From Corinth the prisoners were taken to Memphis, Tennessee, 
where they remained a few days, and were thence forwarded to Mo- 
bile, Alabama. From that place they were removed to Cahaba, Ala- 
bama, where they were huddled together in an old tobacco warehouse, 
and there suffered their first severe trial of rebel prison life. Here 
the starving process was begun. After two weeks of this pen, the 
prisoners, of whom Mr. Steen was one, were taken to Macon, Geor- 
gia, where he endured the infamous mistreatment for which that pen 
is historical, for two or three months. Then he was paroled, and was 
taken to Benton Barracks, Missouri, where he did garrison duty, un- 
til exchanged in January, 1863. Then the men of his regiment 
were reorganized in time to join in Gen. Grant's magnificent cam- 
paign, whereby he swung below Vicksburg, and with a masterly 
movement, as brilliant as any executed by Napoleon, in sixty days 
whipped an army of over sixty thousand, in detail, with a force ot 
but forty-five thousand. Mr. Steen made the quick march to Jack- 
son, Miss., where Sherman and McPherson splendidly defeated Jo- 
seph E. Johnston, on the 14th of May, 1863. The 12th Iowa did 
not get to Champion Hill soon enough to help whip Pemberton, but, 
with Sherman, participated in the two gallant charges on the works 
at Vicksburg, on the 18th and 22d of May. Mr. Steen's regiment 
was with Sherman's 15th corps, on the right. This regiment, with 
others, was assigned to watch Johnston at Black River Bridge, dur- 
ing part of the siege. When the surrender took place, on July 4, 

1863, the 12th Iowa was of the troops which made a dash after John- 
ston, and beat him at Jackson and Brandon, and sent him whirling 
for safety beyond the Pearl river. 

The term of enlistment of the gallant Twelfth expired in January, 

1864, and the men promptly enlisted for a second three years, and 
were then allowed to visit home on a veteran furlough. During the 
summer of 1861 the regiment was attached to the Sixteenth Army 
Corps, commanded by Major General A. J. Smith, and was engaged 
in movements against Forrest, in Tennessee and Mississippi. At the 
battle of Tupelo, where there was terrific fighting for a short time, he 
lost the best friend he ever had, Lieut. Augustus A. Burdick, who had 
been as faithful to him as a brother. This was the saddest event of his 
army life. 

Mr. Steen's regiment pursued Price through Arkansas and Mis- 


souri, and assisted to fight the battle of Pleasant Hill. Then his com- 
mand hurried to Nashville, and arrived just in time to help General 
Thomas fight the magnificent battle of Nashville, whereby Hood's 
army was annihilated and Thomas's soldiers were covered with glory. 

In the spring of 1865 the 1 2th Iowa was sent to Mobile, Alabama, 
where it aided to capture Spanish Fort, after a hot fight, on the day 
Lee surrendered at Appomattox. This ended the gallant battle career 
of John Steen and his company ; but his regiment was held at Selnia 
and Talladiga, Alabama, guarding the freedmen from the keen resent- 
ment of the Southern people until January, 1866. 

Mr. Steen returned home after the war, and the Steen family was 
justly honored because of its ~ six gallant veterans. He was engaged 
in mercantile pursuits for a few months, and then was appointed dep- 
uty sheriif of Winneshiek county, Iowa, and held that position with 
credit until he removed to Nebraska, in 1869. 

On coming to this State he settled' in Omaha, and was soon after- 
ward appointed registry and money-order clerk in the Omaha post- 
office. From that position he was promoted to postal clerk on the 
Union Pacific railroad, through the influence of Senator William B. 
Allison, of Iowa. He continued in this service until the spring of 
1871, when he was elected City Treasurer of Omaha. He served two 
terms of one year each with his usual faithfulness and skill. 

He then was appointed Clerk to the Chief Paymaster of the Mil- 
itary Department of the Platte. This post he resigned in 1874, and 
he then removed to Fremont to engage in the lumber and agricultural 
implement business, in which he was wholly successful. In 1877 he 
took up his residence at Wahoo and entered the hardware trade. 
When the State militia was organized he became the first captain of a 
company at Wahoo belonging to the First Regiment. He was ap- 
pointed postmaster of that place in 1875, and Postoffice Inspector 
in 1883, his division comprising. Nebraska and Wyoming. In this 
position he was very efficient, having been educated for the work 
while Deputy Sheriff and by his previous experience in the postal 
service. He was removed from this office as an "offensive partisan," 
by the Democratic Postmaster General, in 1885, and then reengaged 
in the hardware trade at Wahoo until elected to his present office, by 
about 28,000 majority, in 1888. 

Mr. Steen was married on September 10, 1870, to Miss Marie 




Louise Hough, an excellent and accomplished lady of El Dorado, Fay- 
ette county, Iowa. They had four children born to them, and all are 
living. Their names are Kora Cecelia, Theron Hough, Clarence 
Gnido, and Mona Lillian. The family resides at Wahoo at present, 
where it possesses the highest respect of the people. 

There have been eight Librarians, Mr. Kennard being the first State 
Librarian, as follows : 

James S. Izard, March 16, 1855. 
H. C. Anderson, November 6, 1855. 
John H. Kellum, August 3, 1857. 
Alonzo D. Luce, November 7, 1859. 

Eobert S. Knox, 1861. 
Thomas P. Kennard, June 22, 1807. 
"William H. Jones, January 10, 1871. 
Guy A. Brown, March 3, 1871. 

Among the most important of the offices of the State is that of Com- 
missioner of Labor, created by act of the Legislature of 1887. By this 
act the Governor is the named Commissioner, (this being to avoid the 
constitutional prohibition against creating any new office,) with power 
to appoint a Deputy, to whose care the whole work of the department 
is consigned, and who is recognized as the real head of the depart- 
ment, the de facto Commissioner of Labor. And in selecting the 
Hon. John Jenkins to be the head of the State Bureau of Labor, Gov- 
ernor Thayer showed excellent judgment. 

Mr. Jenkins is descended from distinguished ancestors. His grand- 
father was John Jenkins, whose residence was Hengoed, Wales. He 
was a minister of distinction in the Baptist church, and a college in 
Pennsylvania conferred upon him the title of D. D., about 1850, on 
account of his learned works on the Bible. He was the author of a 
commentary on the Bible which required sixteen years of labor to 
produce. The great work of his life was a religious allegory entitled 
the " Silver Palace," a work somewhat resembling Bunyan's " Pilgrim's 
Progress." It was this which won him his theological title. He was 
also distinguished as an orator. There is no record of Mr. Jenkin's 

Mr. Jenkins's father was also John Jenkins. He was also a min- 
ister of distinction on account of learning and intellectual energy. He 
was sent by the Welsh Society to Morlaix, France, in 1832, to estab- 
lish a Baptist Mission. He was the author of various works of a lit- 
erary and scientific character, and on account of their high merit he 
was elected a member of the French Academy of Sciences. He died 


in France in 1873. Mr. Jenkins's mother was an excellent woman, 
and the mother of twelve children, eleven of whom were born in 
France. Of these, Mr. Jenkins, the Commissioner, was the fourth 
child and the third John Jenkins in direct succession. He was born 
at the Mission at Morlaix, France, May 25, 1838. He spent his boy- 
hood there in educational and industrial pursuits, and was sent to 
Wales in 1853, articled to become a mechanical engineer, under the 
tutelage of T. W. Kennard, Chief Engineer of the Atlantic & Great 
Western railway. In this position Mr. Jenkins became a skillful 
engineer and mechanic — in fact, a master workman. 

In 1861, owing to the fact that the United States Mail Steamship, 
Arago, running from New York to Havre, of which he was engineer, 
was stopped in New York harbor because the rebel privateer Sump- 
ter was on the seas, he enlisted in the Seventy-first New York In- 
fantry, in 1862, to meet the rebel invasion at the time Banks was 
driven out of the Shenandoah Valley. The regiment reported to 
Secretai-y of War Edwin M. Stanton for a three months' term. The 
regiment was engaged in detailed service in Maryland, to prevent 
rebel recruits from passing from Maryland into Virginia. Soon after 
the term of enlistment, and subsequent to the second battle of Bull 
Run, Mr. Jenkins returned to his old work, mechanical engineering. 
In 1863, during Lee's raid into Pennsylvania, Mr. Jenkins again en- 
listed, this time in the Forty-fourth Pennsylvania Infantry. His 
regiment was mainly employed in defending Harrisburg against the 
advance of the rebel General Jenkins, until he left to join Lee at 
Gettysburg. Then the Forty-fourth pressed on to Gettysburg, but 
arrived just in time to see the battle won by the Union forces. His 
regiment was mustered out after three months' service, and Mr. Jen- 
kins returned to New York and resumed his occupation as a mechan- 
ical engineer, being mainly employed in the construction of Federal 
monitors. He helped to build the monitors, Tonwanda, Susquehanna, 
Lehigh, and others. 

After the war his efficiency as a mechanical engineer called Mr. 
Jenkins to the oil regions of Pennsylvania, where he was employed 
ior a time on the John Steele oil farm. By his skill he was enabled 
to make a fortune in eighteen months' time, but lost it all in an equal 
period, owing to the shrinkage of values which followed the first ad- 
vance. He left there penniless and in ill health, and his physician 


recommended a trip on the western plains. He made a journey over 
the western trail in 1867, and had the exhilaration of fighting Indi- 
ans frequently added to that of the fresh prairie air. During this 
trip he made the acquaintance of Col. W. F. Cody, (Buffalo Bill,) 
who was scouting for General Custer. He also met Generals Custer 
and Hancock during the trip, they being west looking after the In- 
dian warfare then in progress. On one occasion one wagon was cap- 
tured by the Indians which contained everything of value possessed 
by Mr. Jenkins. So he arrived in Denver in better health but with 
a low state of finances. He worked in Denver, then a mere village, 
for a while, and during the same year returned to Omaha, where he 
had the pleasure of assisting to build the first stationary engine ever 
manufactured in Nebraska, in the shop of Hall Brothers. From 
Omaha he went to work at his trade on the Erie & Susquehanna 
Railroad, and a few months later became connected with the Panama 
Company, on the Isthmus of Panama; this was in 1869. He spent 
two and one-half years on the Isthmus, two of which he was foreman 
of the shops there. At the end of that period he was called to Peru 
to assist in the mechanical department of the railroad Henry Meigs 
was constructing in that country. From 1872 to 1875 he was con- 
nected with this road, and assisted to construct water works at Iqui- 
que, and salt petre works at Pampanegoro. He concluded his work 
in Peru by driving a tunnel for Mr. Meigs, on the Oroya railroad, 
at a height of 13,000 feet above the level of the sea, during which he 
invented a new way of boring with diamond drills. 

From Peru he returned to the United States and went to the mining 
regions of Nevada to introduce his diamond drill, but received such 
illiberal inducements that he abandoned the project, and entered the 
office of the chief engineer of the Union Mills and Mining Company, 
of Virginia City, Nevada, where he remained until, by the death of 
Mr. Ralston, the company was found to be intimately connected with 
the Bank of California, which, being deeply involved, caused the 
. mines to change hands. 

Mr. Jenkins then came east and engaged with the C. B. & Q. rail- 
road company, in 1877, expecting to return to South America; but the 
course of his life was changed by meeting the lady in Council Bluffs 
who became his wife. This was Miss Alice M. Canning, to whom 
he was married in June of 1878. Mr. Jenkins worked for the C. B. 


& Q. in various capacities, being employed at one time as draughts- 
man, at Aurora, Illinois, under G. M. Stone, now general manager of 
the road. Owing to rheumatism, he had to resign a position in the 
service of the Atlantic & Pacific railroad company, and coming west 
entered the employ of the Union Pacific railroad in the fall of 1882. 
He worked three months at the bench, and then entered their offices as 
one of their mechanical engineers, where he remained until appointed 
by James E. Boyd, though a Republican, to the position of boiler in- 
spector for the city of Omaha. This was in 1886. This position he 
held, with credit to himself, until appointed Commissioner of the 
Bureau of Labor by Governor Thayer, in 1887. 

Through his eventful career Mr. Jenkins has come to understand 
very thoroughly the relations that should govern employers and em- 
ployes. He is a prominent representative of the labor organizations 
of the day, and is a worthy man in the place, for he teaches just prin- 
ciples, intended to be thoroughly fair to employer and employed. He 
urges workingmen to be fair to employers, so that they can insist 
upon just treatment themselves. He favors patriotism, peace, and 
obedience to law. When anarchism was flauntingly and menacingly 
rampant in 1877, at the suggestion of Julius Meyers Mr. Jenkins 
led in the preparation of a grand labor demonstration on the 4th of 
July, in the city of Omaha, with the purpose of showing that labor 
organizations are loyal to the flag, and are not in sympathy with an- 
archy, and allow no ensign to be carried in their processions but the 
flag of the United States. This demonstration had 8,000 men in line, 
and was conducted in perfect good order. 

Mr. Jenkins distinguished himself in Omaha as an advocate of free 
education and free text books ; and so effectively did he lead the 
workingmen in the contest with the school board that the board was 
compelled to adopt the free-text-book system in the Omaha schools, 
which the city now enjoys, to the great advantage of the general edu- 
cation of the masses. 

As Commissioner of Labor Mr. Jenkins is making a marked sue- 
cess. The last Legislature was highly pleased with his report, and 
commissioned him to inquire into the feasibility of beet-sugar culture 
in Nebraska, which he is now giving a thorough investigation. 

His family consists of Mrs. Jenkins, a daughter, Millie Maud, and 
a son, John Benjamin. He has a comfortable property at Omaha. 

Nebraska's resources. " 57 


Nebraska's Resources — Her Development from the "Great American 
Desert "— Topography, Climate, Soil, etc. — Comparisons With 
Other States — The Field Lincoln Possesses. 

Less than thirty years ago the words, " Great American Desert," 
were printed in large capitals on nearly all hiaps representing the 
western half of Nebraska and adjacent territory. Less than ten years 
ago a really wise editor of Iowa gravely announced in his paper that 
farming, west of the one hundredth meridian, could not be carried on 
successfully in Nebraska and Kansas. These opinions are part of the 
candid belief of their time, and are standard humor in Nebraska at 
this time. The hundredth meridian passes through Keya Paha, 
Brown, Blaine, Custer, Dawson, Gosper, and Furnas counties; and 
millions of bushels of corn, wheat, oats, potatoes, and other farm 
products, are annually produced in Box Butte, Cheyenne, Arthur, 
Keith, Lincoln, Frontier, Red Willow, Chase, Hayes, Dundy, Hitch- 
cock, and other counties west of that ancient geographical dead line. 
Hundreds of thousands of farm animals are supported in that region. 
Many bright cities and towns are building up there, and railways, 
have penetrated nearly every part of that much-libeled territory. 
The development of Western Nebraska has only fairly set in, and it is. 
not beyond the power of any ordinary citizen of the State to certainly 
predict that within ten years the western half of Nebraska will be.' 
a populous, rich, and thriving empire, nearly five times the area of 
Massachusetts, and more than thirty times as productive of King 

The growth of Nebraska in population, wealth, schools, churches,, 
and general improvements, has not been surpassed, probably not 
equaled, by any equivalent area on the globe, in the past ten years, 
and she now ranks as one of the great States of the Union. Her 
real merits will not be appreciated by the country at large until after 
the next census is reported, when it will be admitted that she i.s 


swiftly moving to a position beside the richest agricultural aud com- 
mercial States of the Nation. 

The State of Nebraska is situated between 40° and 43° north lat- 
itude, and long. 95° 25' and 104° west from Greenwich. The length 
of the State is about four hundred and twenty miles east and west, the 
Width about two hundred and eight miles, north and south. The 
area is 76,855 square miles, or 49,187,200 acres. It is the eighth State 
in the Union in size, not considering Montana, not yet fully admitted. 
The topography of the State is made up of rolling prairie, table land, 
and valleys, with a small percentage of bluff land, or high rolling 
surface. The State is devoid of mountains, possesses few lakes, and 
is practically without swamps. The prairie is as beautiful as any in 
the world, and comprises about fifty per cent of the whole area ; the 
table lands are really high prairies, terraced, and make about twenty 
per cent of the area. The valleys are generally low, level prairies, 
and, perhaps, make up nearly twenty per cent of the surface, while 
the high, rolling and bluff portion may be estimated at about ten 
per cent.' There is a gradual slope from the west end of the State to 
the Missouri river, causing the three principal rivers, the Niobrara, 
Platte, and Republican, to take nearly an easterly course. The prin- 
cipal tributaries of the Niobrara, which is on the northern side of the 
State, flow northward ; those of the Platte, which occupies the lower 
central portion of the State, flow to the southeast, and the branches 
of the Republican, which has its course along the south side of the 
State until it passes into Kansas, in Nuckolls county, also run in 
a southeasterly direction. A glance at the river system of Nebraska 
will give an idea of the general topography of the State. The Loup 
river is a tributary of the Platte, on the north side, and, with its 
branches, drains and waters nearly all of the north center of the 
State. The Elkhorn river is also a considerable stream, flowing south- 
easterly across the northeast corner of the State, and meeting the 
Platte about thirty-five miles from its confluence with the Missouri 
river. The Blue river takes its rise within five miles of the Platte, 
and flows in a southeasterly course through the southeast corner of 
the State, and empties into the Republican river, in Eastern Kansas, 
This is one of the most picturesque streams in the State. All three 
streams were fringed with timber in the earlier years of the State's 
history, and much of this yet remains. Along the Niobrara the 

Nebraska's resources. 59 

trees were pine, cedar, ash, oak, walnut, and such varieties as grow 
with these. In the western canons there was and is yet fine cedar 
timber. Along the easterly and southerly streams there were Cot- 
tonwood, oak, hickory, elm, maple, ash, locust, willow, box elder, 
linn, hackberry, sycamore, mulberry, coffee-bean, and ironwood. 
There are fifty species of forest trees in Nebraska. Blackberry, goose- 
berry and other shrubs grow luxuriantly, and nearly all kinds of 
ordinary fruit trees are found in the orchards of the State. Almost 
every farmer has a grove of maples, Cottonwood, walnut, or other 
trees which he planted, and in a few years, fuel enough for use can be 
grown in almost any part of the State. The cultivation of groves of 
forest trees has been greatly encouraged by the establishment of "Ar- 
bor Day," a holiday conceived by Hon. J. Sterling Morton, of Ne- 
braska City, and devoted by the people to planting trees. This day 
is now made the subject of a general proclamation by the Governor 
every year. 

The planting of trees and cultivation of the soil has made Nebraska 
a State of very equable climate. Drouth very seldom visits the State. 
Rains come with almost perfect timeliness in the State generally, and 
tornadoes are scarcely ever known. This seems strange, and is, in fact, 
a phenomenon of nature ; but it is true that while the face of Kansas 
is raked from end to end by the most terrific storms, and while Mis- 
souri, Iowa, Minnesota, and Dakota, are frequently devastated in 
places, Nebraska has scarcely ever known a genuine tornado. The 
atmosphere is dry and invigorating, and such diseases as consumption 
are little known. The mean average temperature during 1888 was 
49° Fahrenheit. The winters are not severely cold, and the summers 
are not oppressively hot. The climate is both favorable to human 
health, the growth of farm animals, and agricultural products of all 
kinds. This is shown by the fact that Nebraska has had excellent 
crops for three years past, while States and Territories on all sides 
have suffered from drouth during the same period. The reason for 
this favorable condition of climate is owing, probably, to permanent 
natural causes, based on the topography of the Missouri Valley, and 
the location of the State with reference to the meeting of the hot and 
cold currents of air from south and north. 

But the soil of Nebraska is peculiarly adapted to stand drouth or 
heavy rainfall. This is true of every part of the State. To show 



the remarkable homogenity of the soil of various sections of Ne- 
braska, we will quote the figures of an analysis of soil taken from 
the counties of Douglas, Buffalo, Loup, Clay, and Harlan, represent- 
ing the eastern, central, northern, and southern parts of the State. 
The columns represent the counties in the order named : 







Insoluble (silicious) matter 

























Magnesia, carbonate 



1 06 








100. 00 

This analysis was made by Prof. Samuel Aughey, of the Nebraska 
State University, and is of soil taken from the high prairies and ta- 
ble lands. It is of the lacustrine or loess deposit, and is unsurpassed 
for agricultural purposes. Speaking of the foregoing analysis Prof. 
Aughey says: "From the above it is seen that over eighty per cent 
of this formation is silicious matter, and so finely comminuted is it 
that the grains can only be seen under a good microscope. So abun- 
dant are the carbonates and phosphates of lime, that in many places 
they form peculiar rounded and oval concretions. Vast numbers of 
these concretions, from the size of a shot to a walnut, are found al- 
most everywhere by turning over the sod and in excavations. The 
analysis shows the presence of a comparatively large amount of iron, 
besides alumina, soda, and potash. 

"As would be expected from its elements, it forms one of the rich- 
est and most tillable soils in the world. In fact, in its chemical and 
physical properties, and the mode of its origin, it comes nearest to the 
loess of the Ehine and the Valley of Egypt. It can never be ex- 
hausted until every hill and valley which composes it is entirely worn 
away. Owing to the wonderfully finely comminuted silica, of which 
the bulk of the deposit consists, it possesses natural drainage in the 
highest degree. However great the floods of water that fall, it soon 


percolates through this soil, which, in its lowest depths, retains it like 
a sponge. When drouths come, by capillary attraction the moisture 
conies up from below, supplying the needs of vegetation in the dry- 
est season. This is the reason why, all over this region where this 
deposit prevails, the native vegetation and cultivated crops are seldom 
either dried or drowned out. This is especially the case on old break- 
ing and where deep plowing is practiced. This deposit is a paradise 
for all the fruits of the temperate zone. They luxuriate in a soil like 
this, which has perfect natural drainage, and is composed of such 

About seventy-five per cent of the soil of Nebraska is of this won- 
derfully perfect kind for the production of grains, fruits, vegetables, 
and other vegetation. This soil ranges in thickness from five to two 
hundred feet. 

The river valleys generally possess a soil of alluvium deposits, 
which is rich, like the upland or lacustrine soil, and differs from 
it in possessing less silica and a greater percentage of organic matter 
and alumina. This soil varies from two to twenty feet in depth, often 
has an understratum of sand, and is generally dry and warm, though 
it at times and in places becomes cold and wet, and is not always good 
for farming purposes. These valleys produce almost unrivaled crops 
of vegetables and corn, and, perhaps, not as good wheat, oats, and 
fruits, as the high rolling lands. Both soils are valued very highly 
by farmers, and are scarcely surpassed in the world for reliability and 
abundance of yield. 

There are a few alkaline spots in the central portions of the State, 
and somewhat lax'ger areas in the western part. But all told, there is 
not enough to merit any special mention. 

With such a splendid wealth of soil, it might be expected that Ne- 
braska's farms would prosper, her population increase rapidly; that 
railroad mileage would multiply with great activity, and manufac- 
tories come swiftly into existence. 

The facts will justify all these deductions; and a swiftly-growing 
State always attracts the best people : and so schools, newspapers, and 
churches, have multiplied in Nebraska. Located in the center of the 
temperate region of this continent, it becomes the theater for the high- 
ways and cross-roads of the "Belt of Empire" of the world. The 
city of Lincoln is nearly in the geographical center of the United 


States, and the growth of the State and her capital have both been 
the marvel of the past two decades. 

The growth of population shows that Nebraska has genuine merits. 
There were 122,993 people in the State in 1870. In less than nine- 
teen years 1,100,000 more have been added, an average annual growth 
of 61,000 for the entire time. Texas, with nearly three and one-half 
times the area of Nebraska, and twenty-one years the start as a State, 
only gained at the rate of 98,000 population annually, or but a little 
over 28,000 per year for the same territory that Nebraska possesses. 
Minnesota, with nearly nine years the start as a State, and nearly 
seven thousand more square miles of area, has only made about even 
figures with Nebraska since 1870. It is probably fair to say that but 
two States have made such splendid progress in population since 1870 
as Nebraska. One is Iowa, probably without an equal in the Union, 
area and age considered, but with twenty-two years the start of Ne- 
braska as a State; and Kansas, with much the same natural advan- 
tages as Nebraska, and with over five thousand more square miles of 
area, and six years the lead in admission as a State. So Nebraska has 
made a very creditable race with the best States in the Union in attract- 
ing home-seekers. 

Now, how has the soil of Nebraska supported the high opinion of 
scientific analysis and the confidence of the armies of people who an- 
nually cast their lot within the State's borders? In 1880 Illinois 
produced 326,000,000 bushels of corn. (Round numbers are used in all 
these illustrations.) Iowa produced 275,000,000 the same year; Kan- 
sas, 105,000,000; Nebraska, 65,000,000. In 1888 Illinois harvested 
278,000,000 bushels of corn; Iowa, 278,000,000 bushels; Kansas, 
1 58,000,000 ; and Nebraska, 144,000,000. Here it will be seen that 
Illinois did not maintain her record, Iowa gained a very small per- 
centage, Kansas improved her record by a little over fifty per cent, 
and Nebraska leaped forward at the rate of one hundred and twenty- 
one per cent. Here Nebraska soil meets and overmatches the giants 
in her rate of progress. It will be found that the percentage of suc- 
cesses of the corn crop in Nebraska will be equally as favorable as her 
growth in number of bushels. 

The year 1888 was not generally favorable to a wheat crop in the 
States named above, but the remarkable power of Nebraska soil to 
endure unfavorable. seasons was manifested, though there was really 



nothing approaching a drouth here, as known in other States. The 
striking superiority of Nebraska soil and climate is shown in the sub- 
joined table comparing the wheat crops of 1880 and 1888 in Illinois, 
Iowa, Kansas, and Nebraska. Nebraska was the only one of these 
cereal-producing States that made progress on the record of 1880. 
Here is the exhibit of that fact, taken from the tenth census and report 
of the Washington Bureau of Agriculture for 1888 : 




Per cent of 
gain or loss. 



Loss, 33J. 
Loss, 22$. 


In a similar way it can be shown that Nebraska is in the front rank 
of the world's most progressive States in the production of oats, hay, 
potatoes, and other farm grains and vegetables. It can also be de- 
monstrated that the numbers, grade, and value of her horses, hogs, and 
cattle, are going forward with the very best States of the Union. In 
fact, the climate of this State is very favorable to the health and growth 
of domestic animals. 

And it will be found by the census of 1880 that the manufacturing 
interests of Nebraska have increased several hundred per cent in mag- 
nitude; in fact, are moving forward with her other and diversified 

On the first of January, 1865, there was not a mile of railroad 
in Nebraska. At this time, July, 1889, twenty-three and one-half 
years later, there are about 5,000 miles in operation in the State. 
There has been an increase in mileage of over eighty-one per cent in 
four years. The gross earnings of Nebraska roads in 1887 were 823,- 
446,343, and the net earnings were §10,571,858. 

Popular intelligence and enlightenment generally follow rich soil 
combined with favorable climate. Hence the many schools and nu- 
merous fine churches of Nebraska are one proof of her great, natural 
resources. By the census of 1880 Nebraska had the lowest percentage 
of illiteracy of any State in the Union, and Wyoming Territory alone 
had a better record in all the United States. The following table will 
show this, the States and Territories there exhibited having the low- 



est rate of illiteracy in this Nation, and being, probably, unequaled in 
the world : 


Wyoming Territory. . 





Per cent 

Per cent 

unable to 

unable to 













A verage 


We believe that leading educators of this State now calculate that 
Nebraska has improved her record since 1880, and stands at the very 
head of all States in the world in freedom from illiteracy. 

At the close of 1888 there were 5,187 school houses in Nebraska, 
or sixty-five (nearly) to each of the eighty organized counties. These 
were attended by 215,889 children during the year, and this army of 
children were instructed by 9,886 teachers. The wages paid teachers 
for the school year ending in 1888 amounted to $1,699,784, or a sum 
equal (nearly) to all money paid out for educational purposes in Ala- 
bama, Florida, and Georgia, put together, for 1886-7. Besides the 
wages of teachers, the State spent enough on her common schools, for 
the year ending in the summer of 1888, to make a total cost of 
13,238,442, an amount not exceeded by over fourteen States in the 
Union. The total value of public-school property in the State for the 
same date was $5,123,180. Besides these public schools, there are 
now probably ten colleges in Nebraska, two having been added to 
Lincoln alone since the last report of the United States Commissioner 
of Education. In these higher schools there were, it is fair to esti- 
mate, fully 1,500 students during the year which closed in June, 1889, 
taught by about 100 instructors, and possessing libraries aggregating 
probably 25,000 volumes. These institutions possess buildings and 
grounds worth, together, about $1,000,000. Such are some of the 
evidences of educational growth in a State which did not possess an 
academy in 1870, and employed but 536 teachers at that date in her 
public schools. The churches have grown as rapidly as the schools. 

We have given these statistics and estimates to suggest the real 
wealth and greatness of Nebraska as it is to be in a few years. It has 
been such a few years since the buffalo and antelope roamed over the 


ground where the State Capitol stands, that even our own people have 
not come to realize the swift progress our State is making in gath- 
ering population, wealth, and facilities for mental culture; and States 
east of the Mississippi are positively incredulous that such almost 
miraculous results can be realities. But they are, as we have shown, 
and it is but just that the merits of this noble State shall be properly 
-appreciated now. 

When we see how the State of Nebraska has moved forward, it is 
■easy to explain the wonderful growth of her capital, Lincoln, which 
is declared a marvel by intelligent people even within the State, and 
is incomprehensible to men of the Eastern States. The city is merely 
moving with the farms, the railroads, and the factories. The multi- 
plication of farms explains it. The wealth of grain, stock, and other 
products within her trade limits shows why the city grows. Her rail- 
road system comprises twelve roads, radiating like the spokes of a 
wheel to every section of Nebraska's noble domain, and also piercing 
Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado, New Mexico, and Kansas, 
and, with their connections, supplying Lincoln with a direct territo- 
rial patronage fully double the area of Nebraska, or 154,000 square 
miles, equal to nearly 100,000,000 acres, or over 600,000 farms of 
160 acres each. Here is a trade of 1,000 towns, representing now 
fully 2,000,000 people, and the same area will, within ten years, pos- 
sess 4,000,000 people, or more. 

The corn and wheat alone of this territory were worth $44,000,000 
last year. The oats, hay, potatoes, horses, cattle, and hogs, were worth 
twice as much more. So that the buying power of the territory in 
review was more than $125,000,000 last year, without counting the 
products of wool, butter, cheese, fruit, timber, vegetables, minerals, 
and manufactures. Here is a magnificent jobbing trade that must be 
attended to. Lincoln divides Northeast Nebraska with Omaha, but is 
■on shorter lines to Central Nebraska and all the South Platte country 
than Omaha. Lincoln divides with St. Joseph and Kansas City in 
Southeastern Nebraska, and is on shorter lines to South-central Ne- 
braska, Northern Kansas, and Eastern Colorado, than either. Omaha 
is cut off on the north by Sioux City, on the south by St. Joseph, and 
on the southwest and west by Lincoln, which has actually the same 
in-tariff as Omaha, St. Joseph, and Kansas City. Hence, for jobbing 
and distributing manufactures, the future of Lincoln is fully equal to 


that of Omaha, and it is a possibility that may yet be realized, that 
Lincoln will outstrip Omaha, on account of commercial superiority. 
This is a possibility of the next twenty-five years. To supply this 
commercial empire, there is a perfectly legitimate reason why Lin- 
coln's jobbing trade should grow ; and it has grown, there being sixty- 
eight wholesale houses in the city now, and four hundred traveling 
men make Lincoln their home. Lincoln's jobbing trade will require 
her to grow for fifty years to come, at least. For the same reason,. 
Lincoln's manufacturing interests require her to grow. There is call 
for vast supplies of all ordinary manufactures, and this city must grow 
to keep up with this demand. In keeping with this demand, seventy 
factories are now operated in Lincoln. On this account alone there 
will be a call for a city larger than Lincoln at the hub of the main 
railroad system of this splendid territory. Then, the railroad in- 
terests of Lincoln require a city at this place, and those who think 
Lincoln will stop growing should remember one fact, namely : the rail- 
way system of Nebraska is cast for all time in favor of Lincoln ; and 
instead of the city failing, there is reason to believe that on this ac- 
count alone reliance may be placed for long-continued advancement. 
The roads have reason to push the city, and they will do so. Here 
are three great universities, calling in many who desire to educate, and 
who spend large sums, in the aggregate, to the inspiration of trade. 
Here is the capitol and three State institutions, amalgamating the in- 
terests of the State with those of this city. Here is a center for beef 
and pork packing, and we find two large packing houses with grow- 
ing businesses, and a town springing up on their account alone. In 
brief, there are all the diversified commercial demands for a supply 
and distributing metropolis here that the swift development of a ter- 
ritory of almost unlimited resources could require. With her intelli- 
gent, enterprising, and persistently energetic people, the wonder is not 
that Lincoln grows with phenomenal momentum, but whether the 
city could stop growing if it so desired. It must grow ; it will grow.. 
The buildings erected during 1888, with permanent improvements, 
amounted to $3,287,418. From raw prairie in 1867, the progress of 
Lincoln for twenty-two years has been about 2,500 population on an 
average for every year of that period. Last year her growth was 
7,000 people. At the rate the city is now advancing, and has gone 
forward for several years, it will contain 125,000 inhabitants before 
the close of the next decade. 



Lancaster County— Its Eabliest Settlement and Growth— Incidents 
of the Early Times — The Prominent Men who Braved the Dan- 
gers op the Wilderness. 

To write the history of Lincoln comprehensively, Lancaster county, 
of which Lincoln is the seat of government, must be touched upon 
more or less extensively. It is a fundamental, a preparatory step, 
absolutely necessary to be taken. Hence the preceding pages, touch- 
ing briefly upon the history of the whole State of Nebraska, are log- 
ically followed by a risumi of the history of the county, to be followed 
in turn by the history of the city proper. 

It is agreed by all that the first white man to take up his residence 
in Lancaster county came here in the spring of 1856 — thirty-three 
years ago. John Dee, who lives near Waverly, disputes with John 
W. Prey, of Lincoln, the honor of being the first white settler in the 
county. These two men arrived at nearly the same time, and settled 
in different parts of the county, Mr. Prey settling on Salt creek. The 
authors of this work held a long and very interesting talk with Mr. 
Prey, one evening during the early part of June, 1889, and from him 
gained many of the points given hereafter. 

Being one of the earliest, if not the earliest settler, to make his per- 
manent home in Lancaster county, a few words regarding Mr. Prey 
will be of interest to the readers of this book. John W. Prey was 
born in New York City, May 11, 1828, his father, John D. Prey, 
being in business in the city at that time. When John W. was only 
four or five years of age his father moved from New York City to 
the western part of the State, where he resided until John jr. was 
fourteen years of age. In the year 1842 the Prey family left New 
York for the West, stopping one winter in Illinois, and from there 
going to Wisconsin, where they resided until the spring of 1856, the 
family residence being a farm seventeen miles north of Milwaukee. 
During the residence of the Preys in Western New York and in Wis- 


consin, John W., with his brothers, worked at farming, and built up 
a constitution which enabled him to pass through the hardships of 
pioneer life in two States, and still retain almost the vigor and strength 
of youth. 1 

In the spring of 1856, John D. Prey and his son John W., left 
the homestead in Wisconsin intending tfo take up a new home in Iowa, 
but on reaching that State decided to push on and see what Nebraska 
had in store for them. They crossed the Missouri at Council Bluffs, 
on the ferry, and found Omaha a little hamlet of probably twenty or 
twenty-five houses. Continuing their journey, they reached Platts- 
mouth, and learning of the fine country on the " salt basins," deter- 
mined to see for themselves what it looked like. So pushing on, they 
reached Salt creek on June 15, 1856. Here they determined to set- 
tle, and while John W. remained in the State and county, his father 
went back to Wisconsin to dispose of his property, and to bring the 
rest of the family to the new land of promise. While coming across 
the country from Plattsmouth, and when nearly to the Salt Basin, the 
Preys met three men who were returning from Salt creek, where they 
had staked out claims for speculation, not intending to settle on them. 
These men were from Plattsmouth, and their names were Whitmore, 
Cardwell, and Thorpe. These three men were, in all probability, the 
first to take up claims in Lancaster county, so that the history of the 
county really dates from the latter part of May or the early days of 
June, 1856. 

At that time the land in this county was not surveyed, nor was 
there a land office established until 1857, at Nebraska city. In that 
year Lancaster county, or at least a part of it, was surveyed, and set- 
tlers could know just where their land was located. The Prey family 
took up five claims, John W. Prey's claim being on Salt creek, in Cen- 
terville, section 24, town 8, range 6, on which land he made continu- 
ous residence until December, 1888, when he moved with his family 
to Lincoln. 

The Prey family was quite numerous, the names of the boys being 
John W., Thomas R., James, William, David, and George, some of 
whom still live in the county. Those were days of hardships, times 
that tried men's souls, and the pioneers who braved the dangers of 
storm and cold and starvation and Indian depreciations are to be 
honored. Soon after the Preys located in Lancaster county the salt 


basins began to attract people from everywhere, and the present site- 
of Lincoln was the Mecca for many a settler who came to get the salt 
wherewith his daily food should be savored, and his horses and cattle 
salted. From Plattsmouth and Nebraska City, and later from Be- 
atrice, from near and from far, came the people, with ox-teams and 
on foot, to get the product of the basin. Some of these visitors 
would remain a few hours, some several days; some would boil down 
the water of the basin, and thus get the salt, Avhile others would 
scrape up the thin deposit and clean it from the dust, and use that. 
Of the salt basins further will be said in a succeeding chapter. 

For some time the Preys were the only people living any where 
near the salt basins, the Plattsmouth men merely staking off their 
claims, and coming out semi-occasionally to look after their interests. 
During the first summer the early settlers could do nothing except 
break land, they having arrived too late to put in any crops. 

The winter of 1856-7 was very severe ; the cold was intense, and the- 
snow averaged on the level three to four feet deep. It was about the 
hardest winter that has been seen in Nebraska, and while it lasted the 
people were much discouraged, and thought of returning to their Wis- 
consin home. But the bright, warm, bracing days of early spring-time 
dispelled this feeling, and the Preys set out to break more land and put 
in their spring crops. Only a little corn was planted this year — 1857 
— but in 1858, the third year, a large crop was raised, and prosperity 
began to dawn upon them. 

Soon after the Preys settled here, and before the early settlers num- 
bered more than eight or ten, occurred the first Indian scare. From 
the beginning the Indians had been a source of uneasiness to the set- 
tlers, but not until early corn planting time in 1857 did any outbreak 
occur. At that time settlers began to drop in and take up land in 
Saltillo, and among them was a man named Davis. This man had a 
great desire to add to his experiences that of killing an Indian, and 
it was not long until he found an opportunity of gratifying this de- 
sire. He shot his Indian ; but the consequences were worse than he- 
anticipated. The Indians were numerous, the Pawnees, Otoes, and 
Omahas, taking precedence in point of numbers; so when they found 
that one of their number had been the victim of a white man's bullet, 
they went on the war path immediately. The settlers became alarmed,, 
and taking with them only those things which to them were the most 


valuable, they started as rapidly as possible, and under cover of the 
darkness, toward "Weeping Water falls, where there was quite a settle- 
ment of whites. The Lancaster settlers remained at Weeping Water 
about two weeks, but during that time several reconnoitering parties 
were sent out to view the country and report upon the feasibility of 
returning. During that time, also, a company of about one hundred 
men was formed at Nebraska City to quell the Indian uprising, and 
it marched toward the scene of supposed devastation. This trip re- 
sulted in the capture of one Indian, a Pawnee, who was brought into 
camp with a great flourish of trumpets, and consigned to the care of 
three men — one of whom was John W. Prey — to guard through the 
night. Early in the night the Indian asked to be allowed to step out 
of doors, which was granted, but no sooner had he stepped across the 
door sill than he bounded away into the darkness, leaving his mocca- 
sins, leggings, and cloak, and was never seen again by the guards. 
John Prey shot at him as he speeded into the darkness, and he after- 
ward learned that the bullet from his gun grazed Mr. Lo's head, 
leaving a little furrow through the hair. It was a narrow escape, for 
Mr. Prey prided himself upon the accuracy of his aim. However, 
the reconnoitering parties found that the Indians had quieted down, 
and in about two weeks the settlers returned to their homes. Most 
of the settlers found their houses either destroyed or raided, but the 
Prey house was untouched. This ended the scare of 1857, but it 
came at such a time that the planting of crops was seriously interfered 
with, and the harvest that fall was consequently light. 

Within two weeks after the return of the settlers after this scare, 
the Government surveyors came and laid off the land so that it could 
be properly entered. 

Everything was then quiet until in 1859, when bands of Chey- 
ennes and Arapahoes came to the salt basins bent on mischief of 
some sort. Their coming was unannounced and unexpected, and 
when they reached the Prey homestead the men folks were all away, 
leaving only the mother, a young daughter aged twelve years, named 
Rebecca, and two boys, aged eight and fifteen years. This young 
girl was some little distance from the house when the Indians ap- 
peared, and she Mas immediately seized upon, with the evident in- 
tention on the part of the Indians of stealing her. Their plans 
were, however, frustrated by the courage of the mother and the 


timely arrival of the male members of the family. But little dam- 
age was done to the Salt creek settlements by these Indians, who soon 
passed on to the north. With the exception of a false alarm in 1864, 
these were the only troubles of any note that the Lancaster county 
settlers had with the Indians, but at the time they furnished consid- 
erable interest to the little handful of men, who were braving these 
western wilds. 

Mr. Prey is blessed with a splendid memory, and tells many inter- 
esting happenings, including the above, of these times of excitement. 
The nearest trading point, for some time, was Nebraska City, but 
during the first winter, a severe one, the Prey family were very for- 
tunate in having laid in an ample stock of provisions from St. Louis, 
which doubtless saved them much suffering. Mr. Prey was treas- 
urer of the old county of Clay, before it was divided, and has been 
one of Lancaster county's commissioners a number of terms. 

During the Indian scare of 1864, when it was thought that the 
bloodthirsty Sioux would continue their marauding movements east- 
ward from the Big Blue river, nearly all the people left the settle- 
ment in the region of Lincoln, then Lancaster. Several men decided 
to take chances and remain until they saw or heard something of the 
savages. Not being attacked for two or three days, they decided to 
go westward, toward the Blue river, until they should learn some- 
thing of the movements of the Sioux. They were well mounted and 
armed with rifles and revolvers, the party consisting of Capt. W. T. 
Donovan, John S. Gregory, E. W. Warnes, Richard Wallingford, 
James Morgan, John P. Loder, Aaron Wood, and one other, eight 
in all. They saw no signs of redskins until they came in sight of 
the Blue river. Then while looking around for the wily Sioux 
warriors, they saw a single Indian peeping over a hill some distance 
to their rear, and decided to ride back, lest this incident might bode 
mischief. They had only began the movement of retreat, when sud- 
denly there rose up from the low grounds, in response to signals, sev- 
eral hundred mounted Indians, right across their pathway, and the 
savages began to bear down upon the little company of whites, and 
to hem them in. The pale faces were paler than usual then, for it 
looked as though they were going to see more of the Indians than 
they had expected, and that death was not many minutes ahead. 
Having strapped their rifles to their shoulders and drawn their re- 


volvers, they made a start, to attempt the desperate feat of forcing- 
their way through the line of savages, or die in the endeavor. They- 
had only begun this movement, when the Indians put up a white- 
flag, and one warrior rode down upon them, throwing away his gun 
to show his friendly intentions. The Indian hunters halted. The 
Indian came up, and said: "How. Me no Sioux, me Pawnee; me- 
no fight white man." 

To the great relief of the whites, this proved to be true. This was- 
a band of Pawnee warriors, who were also out after the Sioux, and 
supposed they had caught a party of Sioux stragglers. When they 
saw their mistake they raised the white flag. 

After this explanation the Pawnees rode right on after the Sioux r 
while the Salt creek soldiers returned to their homes, having lost a 
large part of their interest in the Sioux. 

For some years everything moved along quietly, the number of* 
settlers gradually increasing. Among the earliest settlers who came 
into the county subsequent to the arrival of the Prey family and 
John Dee, can be mentioned, L. N. Haskin, of New York, who came- 
in 1863; Geo. A. Mayer, Germany, 1863; W. E. Keys, Ohio, 1863; 
E. G. Keys, Canada, 1863; J. S. Gregory, Vermont, 1862; John 
Michael, Pennsylvania, 1856; J. F. Cadman, Illinois, 1859; J. P. 
Loder, Ohio, 1857 ; Maurice Dee, a native of Nebraska, born in 1860 ; 
M. Spay, Ireland, 1859; J. A. Snyder, Indiana, 1862; C. F. Retz- 
laff, Germany, 1858; E. Warnes, England, 1863; P. Wallingford, 
Ohio, 1859; J. A. Wallingford, Ohio, 1858; W. A. Cadman, Illi- 
nois, 1859; W. E. Stewart, Indiana, 1860; Oren Snyder, Wiscon- 
sin, 1862; Solomon Kirk, Tennessee, 1857; and Dr. W. Queen, in 
1860; all of whom still reside in the county. 

Chris Roche, brother of Lancaster county's present efficient Treas- 
urer, Hon. Jacob Roche, has the distinction of being born in mid 
ocean, on board the ship that brought his parents to this country, 
but there is no record that the passage money for the young man wa& 
ever paid. However, he is a staunch, loyal American citizen, even 
if his birth was on the "rolling deep." 

Lancaster county furnished but one soldier to the Union army dur- 
ing the late unpleasantness — that is, but one was enlisted from the 
county — and that one, who bears the distinguished honor, is Dr. Wes- 
ley Queen, who enlisted in the Second Nebraska Cavalry, at Nebraska 


City, having then been a resident of this county but two years. He 
was postmaster of Saltillo when he enlisted, and left John Cadman 
to perform the duties of his office while he was away. 

On the second day of July, 1861, W. W. Cox, the historian of 
Seward county, came to the present site of Lincoln, on the invitation 
of ¥m. T. Donovan, from Nebraska City, and engaged in the man- 
ufacture of salt. In his "History of Seward County" Mr. Cox gives 
a number of incidents of early life in Lancaster county, and especially 
in connection with the salt basins. In company with Darwin Peck- 
ham, Mr. Cox began the manufacture of salt on the 20th of August, 
1861, and continued the business for some years. At that time the 
nearest settlers to the salt basins were W. T. Donovan, who lived on 
the old Cardwell place, on Salt creek, about five miles up the creek ; 
Joel Mason, who lived a mile further up; Richard Wallingford, who- 
lived just across the creek; John Cadman, whose place was just 
across the line in old Clay county, near where the hamlet of Saltillo 
now stands ; Dr. Maxwell, who lived near Wallingford ; Festus Reed r 
who lived in the same neighborhood ; and J. L. Davison and the Prey 
family, who had located above Roea. To the east lived William' 
Shireley, on Stevens creek, while a little further up lived Charles 
Retzlaff and John Wedencamp. Aaron Wood was located near the 
head of Stevens creek, while John and Louis Loder lived down Salt 
creek, near Waverly. Michael Shea and James Moran were also 
neighbors, as the term then applied. 

Late in the fall of 1861 the first frame building in Lancaster- 
county was commenced, and it was finished in the spring of 1862.. 
Richard Wallingford was the owner, and the work was done by W_ 
W. Cox, he being a carpenter. Mr. Wallingford was evidently 
desirous of making a very fine house, for the doors were of black 
walnut, which timber was also worked into other parts of the struc- 

The most of that little band of patriots that opened the way for civ- 
ilization in Lancaster county, sleep. Jacob Dawson lived long enough, 
to see Lincoln well established, while Elder Young lived long enough, 
to see the city grow strong and vigorous, and well on the road to com- 
mercial supremacy. Elder J. M. Young was closely identified with 
the early history of Lancaster county, the town of Lancaster, of which 
he was the founder, and later with the city of Lincoln. He died on 


Saturday, February 23, 1884, and a subsequent issue of the State 
Journal says of him : 

It is seldom that the Journal is called upon to chronicle the death of a man who, 
living, had so many claims to the love and respect of his fellow men, and who, 
dead, leaves so great a lesson of faith and works behind him, or is so sincerely 
mourned, as Elder J. M. Young, who has at last, after seventy-eight years of labor 
in his Master's vineyard, gone to receive the reward of his faithful toil. 

Up to within a year Elder Young had been quite vigorous and active, notwith- 
standing his burden of years. For the last year he had been suffering from bron- 
chial affections, and for about two months was confined to his bed. 

Elder J. M. Young was born in Genesee county, N. Y., near Batavia, on the 
old Holland purchase, November 25, 1806. In 1829 he married Alice Watson, at 
that time eighteen years of age, who now survives him at the age of seventy-four. 
The following year he moved to Ohio, and from Ohio he went to Page county, Iowa, 
in 1859. In 1860 he came to Nebraska, and settled at Nebraska City. In 1863, 
near the end of the year, he came to Salt creek, and selected as a site for a town, 
and what he predicted would be the capital of Nebraska, the present site of Lin- 

The following-named persons located here at the same time: Thomas Hudson, 
Edwin Warnes, Dr. McKesson, T. S. Shamp, Uncle Jonathan Ball, Luke Lavender, 
Jacob Dawson, and John Giles. It was the original intention to make the settle- 
ment a church colony, but the idea was never utilized as projected. 

On eighty acres owned by him Elder Young laid out the town of Lancaster, 
which was made the county seat. He gave the lots in the city away, half to the 
county and school district, and half to the Lancaster Seminary, a school which he 
hoped to see established here for the promulgation of his faith. He built from the 
proceeds of the sale of some of the lots a building, which was called the seminary, 
and which was occupied by the district school and church. It was burned in 1867, 
and was never rebuilt. 

A church was organized here, and Mr. Schamp was its first pastor. Elder Young 
was then President of the Iowa and Nebraska Conference. The next year after the 
capital was located, the stone church was built. Elder Young's dream was to 
build up a strong church in the capital city. He worked assiduously for the ob- 
ject, and put into the work some eight or ten thousand dollars of his private 
means. When the church went down, and he saw that his dream, in so far, had 
been in vain — that his dream could never be realized — he was almost broken 
hearted; and this was the chief cause of his departure from Lincoln, which took 
place in 1882, when he went to London, Nemaha county, the scene of his closing 

Elder Young began his labors as a minister soon after he moved to Ohio, in 1829. 
He was President of the Ohio Annual Conference for several years, and was Presi- 
dent of the Nebraska and Iowa Conference for about twenty years. He was a man 
of rare vigor and fine attainments. 

Elder Young left four sons: John M. Young, of Lincoln; James O. Young, of 
London; Levi Young, Lancaster county; and Geo. W. Young, of Taos City, New 
Mexico. He was buried in Wyuka Cemetery, on February 26, 1884. Elder Hud- 
son couducted the funeral services, by request of the deceased, assisted by Eev. D. 
KiniiPV and W. T. Horn. 


Reminiscences of those early days are yet plentiful. Elk and an- 
telope were abundant, and the settlers brought down many of these 
prairie animals to eke out their provisions. No buffalo were here at 
that time, having early — before 1856 — taken their departure for the 
west. Besides the four-footed animals, water fowl used to congregate 
around the basin, such as geese, brant, swan, ducks, and pelicans. 

As the Union armies gained a foothold in Missouri, large numbers 
of rebels found it convenient to find homes elsewhere, and many ot 
them came to the Lancaster salt basins, thinking, probably, that salt, 
being a great antiseptic, might save their somewhat unsavory reputa- 
tions. Great hordes would congregate at the basins, and they would 
frequently show their spirit by acts that were hard for Union men to 
endure. Once they became so insolent and insulting that the loyal 
men of Lancaster found it necessary to organize for self-defense, but 
the rebels did not care for any real demonstration of their loyalty, 
and hence made themselves scarce. 

The first sermon preached in Lancaster county, at least near the salt 
basins, was by Elder Young, on the Sabbath following the fourth of 
July, 1863, at the house of W. W. Cox, a fair-sized congregation be- 
ing present. A Sabbath-school was organized soon after, it being the 
first one between the Missouri river and the Rocky mountains. 

It seems to be pretty well settled that the honor of being the first 
white child born in the county belongs to F. Morton Donovan, son 
of Capt. W. T. Donovan, who was born March 12, 1859. Mr. Mor- 
ton Donovan is still living, or was a few months ago, and in 1867 had 
the honor of breaking the ground for the capitol building in this 
city. On March 18th, of the same year, the wife of Michael Shea, 
on Camp creek, gave birth to a son, and soon afterward a child was 
born to William Shirley. 

In 1862 the homestead law was passed, and the first homestead in 
Lancaster county entered under this law was by Capt. Donovan, on 
January 2, 1863, he choosing a place just east of the present location 
of the insane hospital. It was in the summer of 1863 that Elder 
J. M. Young and his associates, representing a colony of Methodist 
Protestants, settled on the site of the old town of Lancaster, (now Lin- 
coln,) which land then belonged to the Government. Jacob Dawson 
and John Giles took homesteads adjoining the site, and in 1864 the 
colony was increased by the location on or near the site of a hah 


dozen more settlers. Up to that time Dr. J. McKesson, Luke Lav- 
ender, E. W. Warnes, J. M. Riddle, J. and D. Bennet, Philip Hum- 
erick, E. T. Hudson, C. Aiken, Robert Monteith and his two sons, 
John and William, William and John Grey, O. F. Bridges, Cyrus 
Carter, P. Billows, W. Porter, Milton Langdon, and three or four 
others, were the settlers on and near the site of the old town of Lan- 
caster. In 1864, Silas Pratt, the Crawfords, Mrs. White and daugh- 
ters, C. C. White, and John Moore, settled on Oak creek, about 
twelve miles northeast of the Lancaster settlement. 

During the Indian scare of September, 1864, the great majority of 
the settlers abandoned their claims and sought refuge in the towns 
along the Missouri. A few, however, stuck to their claims, among 
whom were Capt. Donovan, J. S. Gregory, and E. W. Warnes, in the 
vicinity of Lincoln; Richard Wallingford at Saltillo; James Moran 
and John P. Loder on "Lower Salt," Aaron Woods on Stevens 
creek, and the Prey family on the Salt, south of Lincoln. The scare 
was of no great account, the Indians coming no further east than th& 
Big Blue. 

In the early days there were many lively and ludicrous scenes in the 
courts at the basin. Hon. J. S. Gregory and Milton Langdon were the 
principal local attorneys, and in nearly all causes were arrayed against 
each other. They were both keen and tricky, ever on the alert to 
catch the other napping, and their legal contests were sometimes very 
lively. Occasionally a case would arise that would put the lawyers, 
court, and officers, on their mettle, and such a case was one which came- 
off along about 1864. A rough customer, who, it is said had been a 
member of the rebel army, came into the county and squatted for a 
few days in the little settlement which was afterward Lancaster. This 
individual having made some dangerous threats, and having stated 
rather publicly and offensively that he intended to kill certain men of 
the settlement, an information was filed and a warrant issued and 
placed in the hands of the Sheriff. All was then excitement, and 
while the court (W. W. Cox) was giving some directions to the citi- 
zens about assisting the Sheriff, who should appear but the alleged 
criminal, who came stalking into the court room, carrying his rifle in 
convenient position for immediate use, the Sheriff following him at a 
respectful distance of ten or fifteen feet. Judge Cox, with his native 
politeness, invited the gentleman to take a seat, but the criminal 


promptly declined. He then took a careful survey of the court, all the 
surroundings, and with his rifle cocked and finger on the trigger, be- 
gan a retreat, requesting all hands to stand out of the way, which they 
seemed much inclined to do. The Judge remarked to the Sheriff and 
posse: "You will be justified in taking that man if you have to kill 
him to do it," but they did not take him. He backed out with his 
drawn weapon, and no one seemed willing to risk his capture. But 
the culprit was bent on vengeance, and had seemingly no intention of 
leaving until he had wreaked it on somebody. He had become angry 
at the Judge for telling the officers to take him dead or alive, and so 
the next morning, while Mr. Cox was busy at the salt furnace, the 
scoundrel came sneaking up a small ravine in the rear, with a view of 
getting a sure shot at the man who had advised his capture. But the 
Judge saw the rascal before he could get a good shot, and the latter 
started off rapidly across the basin, followed by the Judge, who soon 
halted him. The villain cocked his rifle, but Mr. Cox did not seem to 
care for that, and marched straight up to the fellow, who curled down 
like a whipped cur. He received a court blessing in the open air, af- 
ter which he left for parts unknown, and was never seen again. 

The first term of district court was held in November, 1864, in 
Jacob Dawson's log cabin, and was presided over by Judge Elmer S. 
Dundy with the same rude dignity which he preserves to-day as Judge 
of the federal court. 

Dawson's cabin stood where the St. Charles hotel now stands, and 
during the term of court Uncle Jacob was reduced to great straits to . 
properly entertain the judge and attorneys. The term is all the more 
memorable because of a regular blizzard of whirling, drifting, driv- 
ing snow, which came down almost the whole week. Judge Dundy 
appointed Judge Pottinger, of Plattsmouth, as prosecuting attorney, 
and as Hon. T. M. Marquett was the only other representative of the 
legal profession then present, he appeared on the other side in almost 
all the cases. 

Soon after the first term of district court was held in the county, 
the legal talent was increased by the coming in of Ezra Tuttle, who 
located on Oak creek in 1865, and S. B. Galey and Hon. S. B. Pound, 
who settled in Lancaster in 1866. When it became certain that the 
war would result in the preservation of the Union, and that there 
would be ample security here as elsewhere for life and property, great 


numbers of settlers began to arrive; and a further stimulus to settle- 
ment was the certainty of the building of the Union Pacific railroad. 
Its eastern terminus had been fixed in the fall of 1864, and the first 
ground broken at that time, and this may be said to commence the era 
of a new and vigorous life for Nebraska and for Lancaster county. 

In 1866 the Hardenburghs and Lindermans took possession of the 
salt works at the big basin, and erected a portable saw-mill, which 
was of great use to the settlement. They also erected that year a frame 
house, which was used for a hotel, and a frame building, in which 
they opened a general merchandise store. In 1867 John Monteith 
and sons erected a building, in which they kept a boot and shoe store. 
Dr. McKesson built a residence in the north part of town, and Jacob 
Dawson commenced the erection of an elegant stone mansion, in which 
he afterward resided and kept the post-office. 

At the old settlers' picnic, held at Cushman park on June 19, 1889? 
Mr. John S. Gregory was one of the speakers, and delivered an ad- 
dress full of interesting reminiscences, from which the following is 
taken : 

The early summer of 1862 found me residing in Eastern Michigan, possessed of 
a comfortable bank account, with the ambition for adventure usual to adolescent 
youth and a Government commission as United States mail agent, a position which 
enabled me to pass free over the mail routes of the United States, including stage 
lines. About this time a relative who had passed by the salt basins on his return 
from California, called upon us, and advised me to take advantage of my oppor- 
tunities and visit them, which I immediately proceeded to do. 

The only railroad line then in operation west of the Mississippi was the Han- 
nibal & St. Joe through Northern Missouri, and I took that route. The road was 
then in possession of the Missouri "rebs," their pickets guarding most of the sta- 
tions; but the United States mails were permitted to pass freely, and although I 
wore the livery of Uncle Sam, I was not molested. 

From St. Joseph to Plattsmouth I went by stage. At this point public trans- 
portation was at an end, and I hired a horse to ride the rest of the way. 

From "Weeping Water to the basin I followed an Indian trail over the "divide," 
then an absolutely unsettled waste of rolling prairie — not a settler from Weeping 
"Water until at Stephens creek "William Shirley had a ranch, a log cabin of two 

The older settlers know what an "Indian trail" is, but as I think some of the 
later ones do not, I will describe it to you. When the roving bands of Indians 
pass from place to place, they pile the coverings of their wigwams and their camp 
utensils upon their ponies' backs, and they fasten the tent poles to each side of the 
loaded pony, the ends dragging along behind on the ground. They often pile 150 
to 200 pounds on the pony, and sometimes a squaw and papoose on top of all that. 
Another squaw leads the pony, and after forty or fifty have passed along in " Indian 


file," the sod is worn away so that it looks very much like a good wagon road. 
But ponies can pass where wagons cannot, as many a "tenderfoot" has found out 
to his sorrow. 

I reached the present site of Lincoln toward evening of a warm day in Septem- 
ber. No one lived there, or had ever lived there previous to that date. Herds of 
beautiful antelope gamboled over its surface during the day, and coyotes and 
wolves held possession during the night. Mr. Donovan, of whom Elder Davis has 
spoken, resided at the town (on paper) of Chester, about eight miles south. He 
(Donovan) did not remove to Lincoln until 1867. 

About a mile west on Middle creek the smoke was rising from a camp of Otoe 
Indians, and down in the bend of Oak creek, where West Lincoln now stands, was 
a camp of about 100 Pawnee wigwams. I rode over, and that night slept upon my 
blanket by the side of one of them, and the next morning went over to the Salt 
Basin. The tread of civilization had not then marred its surface. It was smooth 
and level as any waxen floor. It was covered with an incrustation of salt about a 
quarter of an inch deep, white as 1 the driven snow, while the water of the springs 
was as salt as brine could he. I had seen the basin for the first time, in its most 
favorable aspect, and was naturally quite enthusiastic over its prospects. A roof- 
less and floorless log cabin stood upon the margin, built the year before by J. Ster- 
ling Morton, who had gone out from Nebraska City and "pre-empted" the basin; 
but it was deserted and desolate. 

I immediately retraced my steps to Weeping Water, and there bought ox teams 
and wagons, and hired men, and went to work in earnest for the construction of 
salt works, which the following year I had in operation, and of the capacity of 
about two tons, a day. 

This salt found ready sale to the freighters from Denver and the mountain re 
gions beyond, at two to three cents a pound. Until the railroads reached the Mis- 
souri river and brought Eastern salt into competition, it was quite profitable work. 
My first residence was a "dug-out;" that is, an excavation dug into the bank of a 
hill, or rather the creek bank, with a big cottonwood timber for a ridge pole, cov- 
ered with poles, then topped with hay and soil. At the rear was a log fire-place. 
The front was of sod. Rather crude was all this, but yet quite comfortable. 

The county of Lancaster was organized in the spring of 1863, and I had the 
honor of being chairman of the first Board of County Commissioners. An attempt 
had been made to organize the year before, but it had fallen through because there 
could not be found available men enough in the county to hold the necessary 

In the spring of 1864 the "Lancaster Colony " located at Lincoln, composed of 
the families of J. M. Young, Dawson, McKesson, Merrill, Giles, Harris, Lavender, 
Warnes, Humerick, Hudson, and one or two others whose names I do not just now 
recall. They staked out the town and called it "Lancaster," and soon afterward 
had the county seat established there. 

The first postoffice in the county was established in 1863, and was named " Greg- 
ory's Basin." I was appointed postmaster, with a yearly salary of S>3. I was also 
allowed $12 per year for carrying the mail weekly from Saltillo, then in Clay 

The Lincoln postoffice pays a larger salary now, but I am not postmaster. In 


the fall of '63 and spring of '64 quite » colony of citizens of Northern Missouri 
came to the basin. The fortunes of war had made it unpleasant for the partisans 
of Jeff. Davis, particularly for those who had been suspected of indulging in an 
occasional shot from the bushes at neighbors of other political leaning; and they 
came up here to "Wait till the clouds rolled by;" but after the war closed, all 
went back to their Missouri homes. 

About this time there came into our fold, from somewhere on the borders of 
Iowa, Mr. Alf. Eveland, and he became one of the " characters ' ' of our early times. 
All you old settlers remember Eveland: a little, wiry, freckle-faced man, with hair 
as red as fire. He came to the basin and started a "saloon " at the cabin where 
he lived, with a keg of whisky, some beer, and a caddy of tobacco; but as he and 
his two sons-in-law, Jim and Kill Harmon, were its best customers, he didn't ac- 
cumulate a fortune. But Eveland was ambitious. He wanted to be called " squire," 
so we elected him "justice of the peace," the first to hold that office in the county. 

On the morning the Missourians pulled out for "home," one of them who had 
a lot of staves, of the value of about twenty dollars, came over to my works and 
sold them to me. I took the precaution to count and mark the staves, and took a 
receipt for the pay. A few days afterward, when I drove over to get them, I found 
Dr. Crimm (who had, you know, come up from Brownville, and had a bench of salt 
boilers in operation) loading these same staves. I asked him what he was doing 
with my staves, and he produced a receipt for pay of purchase price from this same 
Missourian, sold to him the same morning as to myself. We had been "sold" 
together with the staves, so we agreed to divide them equally. But just then the 
thought struck one of us that Eveland had been "squire" for several months and 
hadn't had a case, so we concluded to have a ' ' law suit ' ' and test the ' ' squire's ' ' 
capability. While I loaded up the property, Crimm rushed away, as angry as he 
could assume to be, and soon had a writ of replevin served. The day of trial came, 
and of course the whole settlement had to be present. As the doctor was plaint- 
iff, he proved his case — that he had bought the goods of the owner, paid his money, 
marked the staves, and had a signed bill of sale on the morning the owner went 
away; upon which the squire announced that as he was entirely satisfied of the 
plaintiff's ownership, and should so decide in any event, it would be unnecessary 
for the defendant to take any further trouble in the matter; but we both insisted 
that the defense was entitled to their proof, and then it would be the duty of the 
j nstice to decide the ownership. So the trial proceeded, the evidence, of course, be- 
ing identical with the plaintiff's. And then there was a puzzled squire, running 
his fingers through his "aburn" locks, and careful meditation brought no solu- 
tion; and after vainly endeavoring to have "us boys" go and settle our dispute 
ourselves, offering to remit all costs if we would do so, he took three days to "con- 
sider." At the end of that time he was no nearer a determination, and asked our 
"terms" to take the case off his hands, which we finally agreed to do, in consid- 
eration that he should "treat" all our friends from his saloon. Well, we called in 
every one we could get word to in the county, and we bankrupted his business. 
That was the end of the first lawsuit and of the first saloon in Lancaster county. 
Eveland resigned his justiceship in disgust, and removed to a homestead down near 
where the Cropsey mill now stands; but he has now gone from there, gone away 
from us, but not from our memory. 


During the winter of 1863, Mr. John S. Gregory, not having any 
other business to attend to, gave some attention to destroying some of 
the numerous wolves which then infested this region. He would in- 
sert a few grains of strychnine into little balls of fat, and then pass 
around a large circuit and drop the balls in the snow. The wolves 
would follow the trail, and snap up every ball. Every wolf that 
swallowed a ball was dead in a short time. He would then skin the 
animals, their pelts being valuable at that time. The carcasses he 
piled up in cords, north of Lincoln, to prevent the poisoning of do- 
mestic animals by eating the flesh. They were frozen stiff and stark, 
and corded up like wood. Toward spring Mr. Gregory had a couple 
of cords of carcasses piled up at one place. Then a lot of Pawnee 
Indians came along and stopped near the cords of wolf carcasses. Mr. 
Gregory, fearing they might eat the wolves, rode over to warn them 
of the danger. He found the squaws and papooses lugging the wolf 
carcasses into camp, and he at once expostulated with them, by signs, 
trying to make them understand it was dangerous to eat the wolves. 
The old chief thought he was demanding the return of the wolves be- 
cause they were his property, and at the chief's command, the squaws 
and papooses lugged the carcasses back, and piled them up again. 
They were not well pleased at the prospect of losing a feast, and re- 
turned the wolf meat with long faces. Finally a member of the 
tribe, who could speak a little English, came along, and Mr. Gregory 
explained to him that he did not care for the wolf carcasses, but did 
not want the Indians to be poisoned. This explanation was made to 
the Indians, who set up a big guffaw, and the squaws at once began to 
gather up the wolf carcasses and take them to camp, laughing and in- 
dulging in expressions of great satisfaction. They cooked up the 
last one of the wolves, and had a great feast. 

Mr. Gregory learned from the interpreter that the Indians were well 
acquainted with the use of strychnine in killing wolves, and were in 
the habit of eating animals killed in this way. They had no fear of 
the drug, and suffered no apparent damage from eating the wolves. 



Political Histoby of the County— A Complete List of the State and- 
County Officers From the Beginning to the Present. 

The organization and political history of Lancaster county is, of 
course, of great interest, and valuable. Political contests in those 
early days were as warm as at present, and political canvasses were 
made with the same spirit of rivalry that now exists. For this part 
of the history of Lancaster county, the authors are indebted to Hon. 
Chas. H. Gere, editor of the State Journal, who prepared a chapter 
upon Lancaster county for W. W. Cox's " History of Seward County." 
The work is well and accurately done, as many of the dates and fig- 
ures have been compared with the records and found to be correct, and 
the authors have no hesitancy in giving the subjoined extract as being 
a comprehensive and exact political history of the county. Mr. Gere's 
figures and reminiscences reach to and include the fall election of 
1887, which have been supplemented by the authors from the records 
to bring the history down to date : 

In the fall of 1859 the first movement toward county organization was made- 
A public meeting was held under the "Great Elm " that stood on the east bank 
of Salt creek, near the northwest corner of the B. &. M. B. E. depot grounds, in 
Lincoln. Festus Eeed was elected chairman, and after a strong speech predicting 
the future greatness of the little commonwealth they were preparing to organize 
on the frontier, the business in hand was proceeded with. A. J. Wallingford, Jo- 
seph J. Forest, and W. T. Donovan, were appointed a commission to select a loca- 
tion for a county seat, and they chose the present site of Lincoln, which was laid 
off in 1864, and named "Lancaster." An election was ordered by the Commis- 
sioners of Cass county, to which the unorganized county west was attached for 
election and judicial purposes, to be held at the house of William Shirley, on Stev- 
ens creek, and Judges and Clerks of Election duly commissioned. At this election, 
held on the 10th day of October, 1859, A. J. Wallingford, J. J. Forest, and W. T. 
Donovan, were elected a Board of County Commissioners; Eichard Wallingford. 
was elected County Treasurer; L. J. Loder, County Clerk; and John P. Loder, 
Eecorder. No record of this election, or of the official proceedings of the county 
officers, are on file, except the certificates of the election and the qualification of 
L. J. Loder and J. P. Loder, in the archives of the county. 

It is probable that little or no business was done under this organization. On 


the 9th of October, 1860, a general election took place, and was held at the house 
of W. T. Donovan for Lancaster county. Twenty-three votes were cast, and the 
following names are found on the official poll list: 

Jeremiah Showalter, Richard Wallingford, J. D. Main, C. F. Retzlaff, John- 
athan Ball, Hiram Allen, Benj. Eaves, Festns Reed, Daniel Harrington, James 
Coultard, Benj. Hemple, Wm. Shirley, James Moran, J. J. Forest, E. L. Reed, 
Michael Shea, L. J. Loder, John Dee, A. J. Wallingford, Aaron Wood, Lucius West, 
J. P. Loder, and W. T. Donovan. 

For Delegate to Congress J. Sterling Morton received eleven votes, and Samuel 
G. Dailey twelve, showing a close contest. For Councilman, equivalent to a Sen- 
ator in a State, T. M. Marquett received thirteen votes, and W. R. Davis two. 
For "joint," or float Councilman, Samuel H. Lberfc received fifteen votes, and 

Cozad one. For Representative, Wm. Gilmore had sixteen votes; Louden 

Mullen, fifteen; W. R. Davis, sixteen; Wm. Reed, sixteen: E. W. Barnum, twelve; 
and J. N. Wise, six. 

For county officers the following were elected without opposition: Commission- 
ers — one year, J. J. Forest; two years, A. J. Wallingford; three years, W. T. Don- 
ovan; Treasurer — R. Wallingford ; Clerk — J. P. Loder. No candidate for Sheriff) 
Prosecuting Attorney, or Coroner, appears to have been running, and probably there 
was not business enough in the legal line to pay for the trouble of getting up a 
ticket. Festus Reed and R. Wallingford were elected Justices of the Peace, and 
C. F. Retzlaff and James Coultard Constables. Had all the offices to which the 
county was entitled been filled, they would have gone more than halfway round 
the entire voting population. There are no records of any official acts of these 
officers elect. 

On the eighth of October, 1861, the county election was held at the house of 
James Moran, and only fourteen votes were cast. The new names appearing on 
the poll list preserved in the office of the County Clerk, are: E. Galvin, E. L. Bar- 
rett, T. G. Maxwell, and Michael McDonald. Donovan, Wallingford, the Loders, 
Ball, Reed, Moran, Harrington, Dee, and Shea, again exercised the right of suffrage. 

J. J. Forest was elected County Commissioner; Festus Reed, Probate Judge; 
L. J. Loder, Sheriff; J. P. Loder, Clerk; C. L. Barrett, Assessor; T. G. Maxwell 
and J. Moran, Justices of the Peace; and Jonathan Ball and C. F. Retzloff, Con- 

A record of an adjourned meeting of the County Commissioners, after this elec- 
tion, held May 1, 1862, is the first sign of official life in Lancaster county to be 
found in the County Clerk's office. This record occupies fifteen lines on a page of 
small commercial note paper, and informs us that the county was then and there 
divided into two election precincts, by a line running east and west through the 
center of "town 10;" and a petition for a road from the southeast corner of section 
31, town 9, range 7, and another from the southeast corner of section 36, town 9, 
range 6, and one from the southeast corner of section 16, town 12, range 6, were 
received. In what direction and whither these roads were to run, the record saitfa 
not, and County Clerk J. P. Loder forgot to append his signature to the document. 
The Board adjourned till July first, but probably did not meet again till after the 
October election. 

At the election of 1862, held on the fourteenth of October, the division of the 
county into two precincts was disregarded. Fourteen votes were cast, by Messrs. 


Cox, Mason, Foster, Calkin, Chatterton, Blunt, Wallingford, Ball, Chambers, Lo- 
der, Maxwell, Van Benthusen, Donovan, and Coultard. J. F. Kinney, Indepen- 
dent Democrat, received ten votes, and Sam. G. Dailey four, for Delegate to 
Congress. T. M. Marquett received twelve votes for Councilman for the district. 
Geo. L. Seybolt received ten, and J. E. Doom three votes, for joint or float Coun- 
cilman. Five other Cass county statesmen received from one to seven votes for 
Representative, and T. G. Maxwell received thirteen, all, it is presumed, but his 
own suffrage, for the same office; but the other counties in the district not doing 
so well by him, he was not elected. Joel Mason was elected Commissioner. 

The next record is of a meeting of the Board of County Commissioners, held 
November 3d, which ordered a special election to be held on January 17, 1863, to 
£11 vacancies in the offices of Coroner, Surveyor, and Justices of the Peace and 
Constables, as those prviously elected had not qualified. 

The next meeting was held February 5, 1863, and the officers elected at the 
special election sworn in. The Clerk was directed, at this meeting, to notify 
Judge Festus Reed to stop his depredations on the timber in the school section, in 
town nine, range six. 

Another meeting was held September 12th, of the same year, and the county di- 
vided into four precincts — named Lancaster, Salt Basin, Stevens Creek, and Salt 
Creek, and the various places for holding elections were designated. 

In 1863 the county election was held October 13tb, and an entire new set of offi- 
cers were elected, fifty-five votes having been cast in the county. 

J.S.Gregory was elected County Commissioner for three years, William Shirley 
for two, and P. S. Schamp for one year. Clerk, Milton Langdon; Treasurer, R. 
Wallingford; Sheriff, Joseph Chambers; Surveyor, J. J. Forest; Coroner, Dr. John 
Crim; Probate Judge, J. D. Main. 

J. S. Gregory was elected to the State Legislature, for the Representative dis- 
trict to which Lancaster belonged, and John Cadman, who lived in that part of 
the county then belonging to Clay, was elected for Clay, Johnson, and Gage 
•counties,' and took with him a petition from the residents of the northern and 
southern parls of Clay county for the wiping out of that county, and dividing it 
between Lancaster and Gage. This measure was consummated, and the addition 
to Lancaster made her a county of no mean proportions, extending thirty-six miles 
north and south, and twenty-four east and west. 

The assessed valuation of Clay county at the time of its transfer was $36,129.82, 
of which $22,637.82 fell to the share of Lancaster. Her debt was $295.11, of which 
Lancaster assumed $185.70. 

The Commissioners of Lancaster and Gage held a meeting at the house of H. 
W. Parker, Clerk of Clay county, near Olathe, July 19, 1864, and made a final 
settlement of the affairs of the county. The document setting forth the terms of 
this settlement was signed by Fordice Roper, F. H. Dobbs, and William Tyler, 
Commissioners of Clay county, and John W. Prey, of Lancaster, and attested by 
Oliver Townsend, clerk of Gage county, and duly filed. Copies of the official rec- 
ords of Clay county were made for Gage and Lancaster counties, but the latter 
were lost in Salt creek while en route, and have never been filed among the ar- 
chives of the county.* 

* John W. Prey was the Treasurer of Clay county when the division was made, and by 
some means had charge of the records referred to. When the division had been completed 


At the time of the division of Clay county the principal settlements were in the 
extreme north and south of its territory, and » large majority of its tax-payers, 
were undoubtedly favorable to its division. But after the lapse of a few years, 
when the central part was filled up with inhabitants; much discussion ensued as to 
the propriety of restoring the county, and several attempts have been made in that 
direction; but it is probable that the majority of the people in the territory in- 
volved are well satisfied with their present status. The clause on county division, 
in the constitution adopted in 1875, will probably preclude any further agitation, 
and will establish our present boundaries for all time to come. 

In 1864, at the Territorial election held October 11th, eighty votes were polled, of 
which P. W. Hitchcock received fifty-three, and George L. Miller twenty-seven, 
for Delegate to Congress. 

John Cadman was elected to the House of Representatives for Lancaster county, 
and William Imlay for the Representative district composed of Lancaster, Seward,, 
and Saline counties. Richard Wallingford was elected County Commissioner; P. 
S. Schamp, Surveyor; and Milton Langdon, Prosecuting Attorney. 

At the general election, October 10, 1865, 125 votes were polled. August 
Kountze, for Territorial Treasurer, John Gillespie, for Auditor, received 100 votes, 
each, and S. G. Goodman and John Seaton, their opponents, six votes each. 

John Cadman was re-elected Representative for Lancaster county, and Joel 
Mason for the district of Lancaster, Seward, and Saunders counties. 

The county officers elected were: Milton Langdon, Clerk; Luke Lavender, 
Probate Judge; S. S. Snyder, County Commissioner; William Guy, Treasurer; W. 
Ingram, Coroner; J. S. Gregory, Prosecuting Attorney; and P. S. Schamp, Sur-- 

June 2, 1866, an election was held under the State constitution, prepared by 
the Territorial Legislature of '65-'66, at which 165 votes were polled in the 
county, of which David Butler received 112, and J. Sterling Morton 53, for Gov- 
ernor; for the constitution, 95; against, 53. John Cadman was elected Senator to 
the first State Legislature, which met July 4th. James Queen, of Lancaster, was 
returned elected as Representative from Lancaster, Seward, and Saunders, and his 
seat was contested by his opponent, J. L. Davison, of Seward, and the contest was 
pending when the Legislature adjourned, after an eight-days' session. Ezra Tul- 
lis was elected Representative from the county. 

At the October election of the same year, pending the admission of Nebraska as- 
a State, 199 votes were cast, of which T. M. Marquett, (Republican,) received 129, 
and J. Sterling Morton, (Democrat,) 69 for Delegate to Congress. 

J. E. Doom, of Cass, was elected Territorial Councilor and State Senator from. 
Cass and Lancaster; E. K. Clark, of Seward, Representative from Lancaster, Sew- 
ard, and Saunders; and E. H. Hardeuberg, Representative from Lancaster county 

he sent these records to Beatrice, to have the copies made. When the copy was ready for 
Lancaster county, Mr. Prey sent oyer to Beatrice a man named William Mills, a neighbor,, 
with an order for the books. Mills's especial errand to Beatrice was to get a grist of flour. On. 
getting this and the records Mills started home, late in the afternoon. When he reached Salt 
creek a tremendous rain had raised the waters very high, and not thinking of this, Mills, 
plunged his team into the stream where he had comfortably forded it on his trip to Beatrice. 
The current was too strong, and the wagon box was floated off and upset, records, grist, and. 
groceries, floating down the tide. Mills himself was nearly drowned, and was only rescued, 
by the Prey family, whose residence was near the ford, rushing out and lending him assist-. 


to both United State9 and State Legislatures. Hardenberg resigned at the close 
of the Session of the Territorial Legislature, in March, 1867, and John Cadman 
was elected to rill the vacancy in the State Legislature, which was called immedi- 
ately after. 

John W. Prey was elected County Commissioner in the Third District. 

At the county election of 1867, held October 8th, 235 vote3 were cast. The officers 
elected were: Silas Pratt, Commissioner; John Cadman, Probate Judge; S. B. Ga- 
ley, County Clerk; J. H. Hawke, Sheriff; M. Langdon, Treasurer; Ezra Tullis, 
Surveyor; F. A. Bidwell, School Commissioner; and Emil Lange, Coroner. 

At the State election of 1868, held October 11th, 460 votes were cast. David 
Butler, (Republican,) received 320, and J. E. Porter, (Democrat,) 123. C. H. Gere, of 
Lancaster, was elected Senator for the district composed of Lancaster, Saline, Gage, 
Pawnee, and Jefferson counties; Ezra Tullis, Representative from the county; W. 
R. Fields, County Commissioner. 

Seth Robinson, of Lancaster, was appointed Attorney General by Governor 

At the county election, October 10, 1869, 562 votes were cast, S. B. Pound, (Re- 
publican,) for Probate Judge, receiving 392; J. M. Bradford, (Democrat,) 170. 
Capt. R. A. Bain was elected Clerk; John Cadman, Treasurer; Sam. McClay, 
Sheriff; M. Langdon, Surveyor; Robert Faulkner and D. H. Sudduth, County 
Commissioners; Allen M. Ghost, Superintendent Public Instruction; Dr. D. W. 
Tingley, Coroner. 

At the State election, October 11, 1870, 1,116 votes were polled, David Butler 
(Republican) receiving 798; John H. Croxton, (Democrat,) 318. Col. A. J. Crop- 
sey, of Lancaster, was elected Senator for the district, and S. B. Galey Representa- 
tive for the county. 

An election was held May 2, 1871, for Delegates to the Constitutional Conven- 
tion, which met in June, and Seth Robinson and J. N. Cassell were elected to 
represent the county; Col. J. E. Philpott, of Lancaster, from the Eleventh Sena- 
torial District, of Lancaster and Seward; and W. H. Curtis, of Pawnee, for the 
Fourteenth Representative District, composed of Lancaster, Saunders, Johnson, 
Pawnee, and Gage. 

At the election on the new constitution, held September 19th of the same year, 
1,415 votes were cast — 1,237 for the new constitution, and 178 against it. The 
constitution was not adopted. 

At the county election of October 10th of the same year, 1,259 votes were cast. 
The officers elected were: J. D. Lottridge, County Commissioner; A. L. Palmer, 
Probate Judge; R. O. Phillips, Clerk; R. A. Bain, Treasurer; A. M. Ghost, Super- 
intendent Public Instruction; J. T. Murphy, Surveyor; and Dr. J. G. Fuller, 

At the State election, October 8, 1872, 1,736 votes were polled, L. Crouuse (Re- 
publican) receiving 1,189, and J. L. Warner (Democrat) 535, ior Member of Con- 
gress. S. B. Pound, of Lancaster, was elected Senator ior the Eleventh District; 
S. G. Owen and A. K. White, Representatives for the county; and M. H. Sessions, 
of Lancaster, Representative for the Fourteenth District. Henry Spellman was 
elected County Commissioner. J. J. Gosper, of Lancaster, was elected Secretary 
of State. 

At the county election, October 14, 1873, 1,927 votes were polled. The officers 


•elected were: J. Z. Briscoe, Commissioner; A. L. Palmer, Probate Judge; E. O. 
Phillips, Clerk: Charles C. White, Treasurer; Sam. McClay, Sheriff; Dr. J. O. 
Carter, Coroner; Tom I. Atwood, Surveyor; J. W. Cassell, Superintendent Public 

At the State election, October 13, 1874, 2,038 votes were polled, Silas Garber 
(Republican) receiving 1,382; Albert Tuxbury, (Democrat,) 287; J. H. Gardner, 
(Independent,) 170; and Jarvis S. Church, (Prohibition,) 139. 

C. C. Burr, of Lancaster, was elected Senator for the Eleventh District; Alfred 
•G. Hastings and Louis Helmer, Representatives for the county, and Thomas P. 
Chapman, of Saunders, for the Fourteenth Representative District. 

Dr. H. D. Gilbert was elected County Commissioner, and A. G. Scott Superin- 
tendent of Public Instruction, to fill vacancy. On the question of a Constitutional 
Convention, there were 1,069 ayes to 558 noes. 

At the election for members of the Constitutional Convention, held on the 6th of 
April, 1875, S. B. Pound and C. H. Gere, of Lincoln, C. W. Pierce, of Waverly, and 
J. B. Hawley, of Firth, were elected to represent the county. 

At the State election under the proposed new constitution, and the county elec- 
tion, both occurring October 12, 1875, 2,360 votes were polled, S. B. Pound, (Re- 
publican,) of Lancaster, receiving 1,533, and G. B. Scofield, of Otoe, 727, for Judge 
■of the Second Judicial District. Judge Pound was elected. The county officers 
■elected were: "VV. E. Keys, County Commissioner; A. G. Scott, County Judge; Wil- 
liam A. Sharrar, Clerk; Charles C. White, Treasurer; Sam. McClay, Sheriff; Dr. 
A. C. Gibson, Coroner; S. G. Lamb, Superintendent Public Instruction; J. P. 
Walton, Surveyor. For the new constitution, 2,119; against, 109. S. J. Tuttle, 
of Lancaster, was elected a Regent of the University. 

At the State Election, November, 1876, 2,911 votes were polled, of which Silas 
Garber, (Republican,) candidate for Governor, received 1,947; Paren England, 
(Democrat,) of Lancaster, 712; and J. F. Gardner, (Greenback,) 252. The Sena- 
tors elected from the county, which was now entitled to two, were Thomas P. 
Kennard, of Lincoln, and Cyrus N. Baird, of Oak creek. The Representatives 
elected were R. O. Phillips and W. C. Griffith, of Lincoln, John Cadman, of Yan- 
kee Hill, and Henry Spellman, of Saltillo. J. N. Wilcox was elected Commis- 

At the county election of 1877, A. D. Burr was elected Clerk; Louis Helmer, 
Treasurer; J. S. Hoagland, Sheriff; J. R. Webster, County Judge; G. S. Lamb, 
Superintendent of Public Instruction; J. P.Walton, Surveyor; E. T. Piper, Cor- 
oner; H. D. Gilbert, Commissioner; and C. W. Pierce, State Senator, to fill vacancy. 

At the State election of 1878, Albinus Nance, (Republican,) candidate for Gov- 
ernor, received 1,971 votes; W. H. Webster, (Democrat,) 433; and L. G. Todd, 
(Greenback,) 409. Whole number of votes cast, 2,818. Amasa Cobb, of Lancaster, 
was elected a Justice of the Supreme Court. M. B. Cheney and E. E. Brown were 
elected to the Senate, and S. G. Owen, W. W. Carder, M. H. Sessions, and T. R. 
Burling, to the House. John McOlay was elected Commissioner. 

At the county election, November, 1879, W. J. Weller was elected County Com- 
missioner; J. E. Philpot, Judge; L. E. Cropsey, Clerk; Louis Helmer, Treasurer; 
Granville Ensign, Sheriff; A. D. Burr, Clerk District Court; E. T. Piper, Coroner; 
H. S. Bowers, Superintendent Public Instruction; and J. P. Walton, Surveyor. 
Amasa Cobb, of Lancaster, was re-elected Justice of the Supreme Court for the 


full term. S. B. Pound, of Lancaster, was elected Judge of the Second Judicial 
District for a second term. 

At the State election of 1880, 4,778 votes were cast, of which Albinus Nance- 
(Eepublican) received 3,397 and T. W. Tipton (Democrat) 1,381. The Senators- 
elected were C. H. Gere and C. W. Pierce. Eepresentatives, N. C. Abbott, C. O- 
Whedon, N. T. McClunn, and R. B. Graham. Commissioner, W. E. G. Caldwell. 

At the county election of 1881 the following officers were chosen: Treasurer, 
R. B. Graham; Clerk, John M. McClay; Judge, C. M. Parker; Commissioner, H. 
C. Eeller; Superintendent of Public Instruction, H. S. Bowers; Sheriff, Gran En- 
sign; Surveyor, J. P. Walton; Coroner, A. J. Shaw. 

At the State election of 1882, 4,818 votes were cast, of which James W. Dawes 
(Republican) received 3,328; J. Sterling Morton, (Democrat,) 1,099, and E. P. In- 
gersoll, (Anti-Monopoly,) 391. Senators were E. E. Brown and P. H. Walker. 
Representatives, C. 0. Whedon, A. W. Field, H. Wessenberg, J. W. Worl, M. H. 
Sessions, and M. H. Wescott. Commissioner, W. J. Miller. W. W. W. Jones, or 
Lancaster, was elected State Superintendent of Public Instruction, and C. H. Gere,, 
a Regent of the university. 

At the county election of 1883 the officers elected were: R. B. Graham, Treas- 
urer; J. H. McClay, Clerk; E. R. Sizer, Clerk of District Court; S. M. Melick,, 
Sheriff; C. M. Parker, Judge ; W. E. G. Caldwell, Commissioner ; J. P: Walton, 
Surveyor ; H. S. Bowers, Superintendent of Public Instruction ; N. J. Beachley,. 
Coroner; Levi Snell, Senate, to fill vacancy. S. B. Pound was elected to a third 
term from this county, as a Judge of the Second Judicial District. 

At the State and legislative election of 1884 the whole number of votes cast in> 
the county was 6,401. Dawes, (Republican,) for Governor, received 4,012; Morton 
(Democrat) 2,180, and J. G. Miller, of Lancaster, (Prohibition,) 209. C. C. Burr 
and Alba Smith were elected Senators, and S. W. Burnham,Wm. B. Brandt, H. J- 
Liesveldt, A. W. Field, and J. B. Wright, to the House. Commissioner, H. C. 
Reller. Allen' W. Field, of the Lancaster delegation, was, on taking his seat,, 
elected Speaker of the House. 

At the county election of 1885 the following officers were chosen: Treasurer^ 
Jacob Roche; Clerk, O. C. Bell; Sheriffs. M. Melick; Judge, C. M. Parker; Reg- 
ister of Deeds, J. H. McClay; Surveyor, J. P. Walton; Coroner, E. T. Roberts; 
Superintendent of Public Instruction, Frank D. McCluskey; Commissioner, Alba 
Brown. C. H. Gere was re-elected a, Regent of the university, and Amasa Cobb- 
was re-elected to the supreme bench. 

At the State election of 1886 the whole number of votes cast was 6,834, of" 
which John M. Thayer (Republican) received for Governor, 3,985; James E. North 
(Democrat) 1,424, and H. W. Hardy, of Lancaster, (Prohibition,) 925. R. E. 
Moore and S. W. Burnham were elected to the Senate, and J. L. Caldwell, J. 
Shamp, I. M. Raymond, J. Dickinson, H. J. Liesveldt, and G. W. Eggleston, to the- 
House. Commissioner, H. J. Shaberg. 

At the county election of 1 887, the following officers were chosen : Treasurer, 
Jacob Roche; Clerk, O. C. Bell; Sheriff, S. M. Melick; Judge, W. E. Stewart; 
Register of Deeds, John D. Knight; Commissioner, Thos. Dickson; Superintend- 
ent Public Instruction, Frank D. McCluskey; Surveyor, J. P.Walton; Clerk of 
District Court, E. R. Sizer. Allen W. Field, of Lancaster, was elected a Judge of 
the second judicial district. 


At the State election held on November 6, 1888, 9,962 votes were 
cast, of which Thayer, (Kepublican,) for Governor, received 5,440 • 
McShane (Democrat) 3,610, and Bigelow (Prohibition) 811. At 
that election, Connell (Republican) was elected to Congress for the 
First Congressional District, receiving 5,355 votes, to 3,821 for Mor- 
ton, (Democrat,) and 795 for Graham, (Prohibition.) For the State 
Senate, Raymond and Beardsley were elected, while for the House,. 
Messrs. Hall, Caldwell, Dickinson, Severin, and McBride, were the 
successful candidates, all being Republicans. 

R. D. Stearns was elected County Attorney, and Alba Brown, 



The Salt Basins— Great Expectations of the Eaely Settlers and Res- 
idents of Lincoln — An Interesting Calculation of the Wealth- 
Producing Power of the Wells — The Attempts Made to Realize 
These Expectations. 

The first settlers in Lancaster county were attracted here by the 
fame of the Salt Basin, which in that early day had extended as far 
east as Plattsmouth and Nebraska City. The early settlers near the 
basins made many fanciful pictures of the wealth to be obtained from 
these same basins, and pictured to themselves a great city built near 
by, whose great source of wealth should be the working of the " salt 
wells." And it is safe to presume that one reason why the State cap- 
ital was located at Lincoln (or Lancaster) was the fact that salt was 
one of the products of Lancaster county, and that the Commissioners 
believed that the manufacture of salt would, in the future, prove the 
foundation of a great business, which would attract capital to the lit- 
tle hamlet on the prairie. It is, however, certain that the early resi- 
dents of Lincoln set great store by the basins, and that for years every 
intelligent man predicted wonderful results from the making of salt. 

As proof of this it is here pertinent to quote from a little pamphlet 
of thirty pages, a history of Lincoln, the authorship of which is to 
be laid at the door of Hon. John H. Ames, and which was published 
by the "State Journal Power Press Print" in 1870, a few of the fan- 
cies and figures current in those days. Mr. Ames says : 

" In the following remarks an effort will be made to furnish a 
knowledge of the facts and circumstances, established by experience, 
upon which it may be safe to base a final judgment. So far as known, 
no similar effort has previously been made; and while care will be 
taken that any information that may be contained herein shall be au- 
thentic, yet it must of necessity be less full and complete than may be 
desirable, or than it might be made if there had been any thorough 
and detailed official investigation and report thereon. 

" In the absence of such assistance, recourse will be had to parties 


who are engaged in the business of making salt by solar evaporation, 
and in sinking the well for the purpose of testing the strength and 
value of the brine to be obtained beneath the surface at this place, 
any information derived from which sources may be relied upon as 
being entirely authentic and trustworthy." 

After referring somewhat fully to a pamphlet published in 1869, 
by Augustus F. Harvey, entitled "Nebraska as it is," in which a de- 
scription of the salt basins is given, and a prediction of the great 
undeveloped wealth which they represent is made, Mr. Ames continues : 

"Previous to the time that the above passages were written, noth- 
ing like an extensive manufacture of salt at this place had been 
attempted. Some parties, however, had evaporated considerable quan- 
tities of the surface brine, both by means of solar and artificial heat, 
and the product obtained had been carefully analyzed by eminent 
chemists in New York City and other places, and the result, as de- 
clared by them, was as above stated. [Twenty-eight and eight tenths 
per cent of salt by weight; the product containing ninety -five to 
ninety-seven parts of pure salt, and three to five parts of chlorides 
and sulphates of magnesium, calcium, lime, etc. — Ed. J But it is 
thought that the statement of Mr. Harvey in regard to the strength of 
the surface brine, although no doubt intentionally correct, is, never- 
theless, inaccurate. 

" During the summer months, and when a considerable interval of 
time has elapsed, characterized by an absence of rain and the preva- 
lence of the warm, dry winds which he mentions, the constant evap- 
oration from the surface of the wide, shallow basins or pools of salt 
water often suffices to reduce the brine contained therein to the strength 
of 28.8 per cent; and in fact, when such a state of the atmosphere 
has prevailed for a long time, the recession of water from the edges of 
the basin not unfrequently leaves thereon an incrustation, from a half 
an inch to an inch in thickness, of almost pure salt; but the brine, 
as it oozes from the soil, has not been found to exceed fifteen per cent 
in strength. It has been found that the rapidity of evaporation at 
Syracuse, and other Eastern springs, is in the proportion of two in the 
summer and one in the winter. Owing to the absence of heavy falls 
of snow, and the considerable prevalence of dry winds at the place 
during the winter months, it is believed that the proportional evapo- 
ration during this time will be greater. 


"Early in the summer of 1869, Messrs. Cahn and Evans, having 
leased 640 acres of land from the State Government for that purpose, 
commenced work preparatory to sinking a well in the immediate 
vicinity of one of these salt springs, and at a distance of about one 
and one-half miles from the market square of the city; and having 
erected a derrick and procured an engine and the necessary machinery 
they proceeded early in the autumn to effect this purpose, keeping an 
accurate record of the rock and other formations through which they 
penetrated. By means of this record, with the aid of such knowl- 
edge as is obtainable of the ledges exposed in different localities, an 
approximate and reasonably definite conclusion may be formed as to 
the location of the center of the basin." 

After giving the formations through which penetration was made,. 
Mr. Ames continues: 

" The ground near the wells is usually divided off into blocks, or 
squares, of several rods, between which are spaces or streets of con- 
venient width, a map of the whole resembling the plat of a town. 
Across the squares, in one direction, are constructed vats or troughs, 
sixteen feet in width, and about eight inches in depth, in which the 
brine is exposed to atmospheric action Covers, sixteen feet square,, 
and adjusted with grooves or rollers, are provided, with which to pre- 
vent the brine from being diluted by falling rain. For the purpose 
of calculation, these covers may be taken to represent the number and 
size of the vats, and accordingly this is the size meant wherever the 
word vat is hereinafter used. 

"As shown by the result of Mr. Harvey's experiment, six inches 
in depth of saturated or 33£ per cent brine, that being the usual 
amount exposed in one of the vats, would, under ordinary circum- 
stances, evaporate in thirty-six hours ; or twice that quantity would 
be evaporated every three days, leaving as a product 144,456 cubic 
inches, or over 68.36 bushels of salt. This process repeated seven 
times every three weeks for twenty-one weeks, during the summer 
months, would result in the manufacture of 3,349.64 bushels, and re- 
peated seven times every six weeks for thirty of the remaining thirty- 
one weeks in the year, would produce 2,392.60 bushels, which, added 
to the former, would make a total amount of 5,742.24 bushels, or 
1,148.43 barrels of salt annually from one vat. Multiply this num- 
ber by 1,000, the usual number of vats supplied from one well, and 


from the product subtract one-fifth of itself, as an allowance for the 
•difference in the amounts of salt contained in saturated brine and 
brine of eighty degrees strength, and from the balance subtract one- 
twenty-fifth of itself, as an allowance for the smaller quantity of the 
weaker brine evaporated within the same time, (as a calculation suffi- 
ciently accurate for all practical purposes,) and the entire amount of 
salt which may be manufactured annually from one well will be seen 
to be 882,001.6 barrels. 

"Supposing, what is not at all probable, that the brine should prove 
to be possessed of only sixty degrees strength, the rapidity of evap- 
oration being the same, we will subtract from this amount one-fourth 
of itself, as an allowance for the difference in the product between 
equal quantities of the two brines, and from the balance subtract one- 
twenty-sixth of itself, as an allowance for the smaller quantity of the 
weaker brine evaporated within the same time, and it shows a result 
•of 636,058.84 barrels annually. Change the supposition so that the 
strength of the brine will remain at eighty degrees, and the rapidity 
of evaporation will be reduced one-half, and we have only to divide 
the first product obtained by two, which leaves us an annual yield of 
441,000.80 barrels. Uniting these contingencies, that is, supposing 
the strength of the brine not to exceed sixty degrees, and the rapidity 
of evaporation to be only one-half as great as it has been demonstrated 
to be by experiment, we will divide the second result by two, and 
there will be shown an annual product of 318,029.42 barrels. Mak- 
ing a deduction of one-fourth from each result obtained, as an allow- 
ance for loss of time consequent upon injuries to or breakage of 
machinery, and bad weather, and there will be left, in the order 
named, as follows : 


First 661,501.20 

Second 447,044.13 

Third 330,750.60 

Fourth 238,522.60 

"While the railways now being constructed and those projected will 
give us direct connection with the Eastern markets, and enable us to 
compete with Eastern salt manufactories upon their own ground, it is 
certain that we shall be called upon to supply all the vast territory 
lying between the Mississippi river and the Rocky mountains, so that 
$ 3 per barrel may be considered as an extremely low estimate for the 


minimum price at the wells. The cost of empty barrels furnished at 
the wells, due allowance being made for transportation, it is estimated 
cannot exceed forty-five cents each ; to this we will add ten cents per 
bushel as the cost of manufacture, and deducting the whole from $3, 
it leaves $2.45 as the net value of a barrel of salt at the manufactory. 
This calculation exhibits the net value of the three annual yields, as 
above supposed, in their order, as follows : 

First $1,356,077.46 

Second 977,940.46 

Third 678,038.73 

Fourth 448,970.22 

"The foregoing statement, in which every allowance is made for 
which any reason can be imagined, compares very favorably with any 
that can be made concerning the Eastern manufactories. The brine 
obtained from the wells in the Syracuse group varies in strength from 
sixty-four to seventy-four degrees, the average strength from them all 
being sixty-eight degrees. The brine obtained from the wells in the 
Saline group varies in strength from thirty-two to sixty-six degrees, 
the average strength from all being fifty-nine degrees. The average 
annual product of the wells at Saginaw is 72,000 barrels, while the 
rapidity of evaporation, as proved by experiment, is from two to three 
times as great here as at any of the places mentioned. * * * * 
It is certain, then, that unless the old maxim, 'figures won't lie,' can 
be successfully controverted, that the people of Lincoln have a val- 
uable interest in the salt basin, vested and indefeasible, except by some 
unusual providential dispensation." 

These quotations from Mr. Ames's work are given simply to show 
how highly the people of the early days valued the salt works, and 
what "great expectations" they had of the wealth to be secured from 
them. The complete history of the operations at the salt basins 
from the earliest times has been gleaned from Mr. J. P. Hebard, 
who had, at one time, considerable interest in the work. Mere men- 
tion of the salt basins has been made frequently in the past pages, 
but the subject has been deemed of sufficient importance to justify 
an entire chapter. 

On the third day of May, 1854, the Kansas and Nebraska Act was 
passed, organizing and then creating the political bodies known as 
the Territories of Kansas and Nebraska. Soon afterward Congress, 


on the 22d of July, 1854, passed an act providing for the appoint- 
ment of a Surveyor General for Nebraska, Kansas, and New Mex- 
ico, which provided in general terms that the President should have 
authority to survey the public lands of this then Territory, and should 
have the further authority, in course of time, to sell the same under 
the usual land restrictions affecting sales of public lands. The pro- 
ceeding section of that act of July 22, 1854, said that "The President 
shall have no authority to sell the salt or saline lands within such 

Salt springs, not exceeding twelve in number, were granted and 
passed to the State of Nebraska, by the act of February 9, 1867, 
when the State was admitted to the Union. 

In October, 1857, these lands were surveyed and certified by the 
Surveyor General as being saline lands, and subsequently, in 1859, par- 
ties located land warrants on some of the saline lands, which, after 
the issuing of patents and finding them to be on saline lands, were 
afterward canceled. 

As the county settled up, homesteaders came from miles around and 
camped out near the Salt Basin and evaporated brine to make their 
supply of salt for the year. 

There have been several salt companies formed. On March 1, 
1855, was incorporated the "Nebraska Salt Manufacturing Com- 
pany," for the purpose of manufacturing salt from the salt springs 
near Salt creek, Nebraska. 

On March, 16, 1853, was incorporated a company known as the 
" Saline Manufacturing Company," to establish salt works at or near 
the salt springs. 

A third company was incorporated January 26, 1856, as the "Salt 
Spring Company," for carrying on the business at the salt springs 
discovered by Thomas Thompson and others, lying west of Cass 
county, Nebraska, 

In 1861, W. W. Cox, now a resident of Seward county, and Dar- 
win Peckham, of Lincoln, took possession of one of the log cabins, 
and commenced making salt. It was very scarce during war times, 
and was high in price, and of necessity many came to scrape salt. 

Thev came from all the settled portions of Kansas, Missouri, and 
as far east as Central Iowa. If the weather was perfectly dry, they 
could get plenty of the salt, which could be scraped up where the 


brine had evaporated and left a crust of salt, but a few minutes of 
rain would turn it all into brine again. Some would arrive from a 
long distance just in time to see a shower clear off all the salt. 

Small furnaces were built and sheet iron pans used for boiling 
salt, many of the farmers bringing their sorghum pans for this pur- 
pose. In dry time some would scrape up the dry salt, and accum- 
ulate a large supply, which found a ready sale to those unfortunate 
enough to reach there in wet weather. 

Various other parties manufactured salt here in a primitive way, 
till the time of the formation of the State Government, in 1867. 
The creeks were then lined with scattering patches of timber, from 
which fire wood was secured for boiling purposes. 

In March, 1868, the Governor leased to Anson C. Tichenor certain 
saline lands, including what is known as the Salt Basin. 

On February 15, 1869, the lease was declared void by the Legis- 
lature, and the Governor was authorized to make a new lease to Anson 
C. Tichenor and Jesse T. Green, of the saline land which included the 
Salt Basin, for the period of twenty years. 

A few iron kettles had been set in stone work, and salt made by 
boiling down the brine, being pumped from the basin by a windmill. 
In December, 1869, Horace Smith, of Springfield, Massachusetts, of 
the well-known firm of Smith & Wesson, being on a visit to relatives 
at Nebraska City, took a ride across the country to see the new town 
of Lincoln. Meeting Tichenor and Green at the hotel, the subject of 
manufacturing salt was naturally the principal theme in which he be- 
came interested, and before leaving town, made arrangements for the 
purchase of Tichenor's interest, and one-half of Green's, giving him 
a three-fourths interest in the lease. 

On his return home, he stopped at Chicago, ordered an engine and 
pump, and several carloads of lumber for vats to evaporate brine, 
all to be shipped to East Nebraska City, that being the nearest rail- 
road point, and from there all was hauled by wagon to Lincoln, in the 
spring of 1870. The engine was put on the shore near the basin, with 
a pump to bring the brine from the basin near by, and force the same 
into a large tank. From here it was distributed to the vats as needed. 

The brine, as it ran from the basin when the tide was in — as it has 
a tide twice a day, regular in its hours, commencing at about 3 or 4 
p. M., and reaching the largest quantity at about 6 p. m., and the same 


in the morning — would generally be about 35° to 40° by salometer, 
and on a warm day brine standing in the basin would register as high 
as 65° and 70°. Dykes were thrown up to confine the brine as it 
came up through the ground, and a canal conducted it to a small res- 
ervoir, where it was allowed to settle before being pumped into the 
tank. In the warm days of summer the evaporating was very fast. 
From a vat about 14x28 feet, in less than two weeks of evaporation 
about three thousand pounds of salt were taken. The vats were all 
supplied with covers, on wheels so that they could be run over the vats 
in case of storm. The brine from this basin is different from that of 
many manufactories, in that it requires nothing put in to purify it. 

The salt from evaporation formed in cubes of different sizes, and 
when grasses were put in the brine a most beautiful. cluster of crystals 
would be obtained in a few days' time. This salt, for general use, 
required to be ground in a salt mill. The kettles were also used, but 
scarcity of fuel worked against this mode ; but salt thus made was fine 
as the dairy salt usually found for sale, and for dairy use was said to 
have no superior, as was the case with the coarser salt for curing meat. 

The summer of 1870 was thus spent, when Mr. Smith sent his 
nephew, Mr. J. P. Hebard, to Lincoln to look after his interest and 
act with Mr. Green in developing the business. A large quantity of 
salt was made, finding a ready market for its utmost capacity of vats 
and boilers ; and Mr. Smith visiting Lincoln that year, was so much 
encouraged by the results of the summer's work that on his return 
home he investigated the different modes of making salt, and spent a 
large sum in perfecting and trying a new process for manufacturing, 
in M r hich all the heat was utilized, making a great difference in the 
expense of fuel, which was a large item where all the wood had to be 
shipped in. 

Plans were made and partially completed for investing a large sum, 
in 1871, in improvements, vats, reservoirs, etc., for the making of salt 
on a large scale. 

Mention was made of a party having located warrants on these sa- 
line lands, the patents for which the Government canceled, after find- 
ing them to be located contrary to law. One' of the parties interested, 
J. Sterling Morton, attempted to gain possession of the buildings 
during the temporary absence of the lessees. Failing in this, suit was 
commenced in the district court against Horace Smith, J. T. Green, 


and the State of Nebraska, as defendants, to decide the question of title. 
Mr. Smith learning of this, and fearing a long litigation over the case, 
and uncertainty as to whether the State could maintain title to the land 
leased, and not wishing to invest capital under such uncertainties,, de- 
cided to abandon the enterprise. 

During the season of 1871, as all improvements were stopped, th& 
works were run by Mr. Green at his own expense, netting a good re- 
turn for the season's work. 

In the October term of the District Court this case was tried, result- 
ing in maintaining the State's title; but as Mr. Smith had given the 
matter up, and made other arrangements in matters of business, he 
transferred his interest to J. P. Hebard, who, on Mr. Green's refusing; 
to take an interest in the summer's work, started the manufactory on 
his own account, and after accumulating quite a supply of salt in the- 
bins, noticed that it suddenly commenced disappearing in large quan- 
tities. A friend of his in the dray business gave him some pointers, 
from which he soon found who was reaping the rewards of his labor, 
and where it was disposed of, and that the hauling was all done in the 
night time or early dawu. 

Having learned, one Sunday evening, that another raid would be' 
made in the morning, before daylight, he made it a point to be on 
hand. Before daylight, Monday morning, the teams were heard ap- 
proaching from town, and on their arrival, one wagon backed up to- 
the opening in the bin. Mr. Green accompanied them as the party 
interested in the results not of his own labor, and took his position in 
the wagon to shovel forward as thrown in at the end of the wagon 
bed. The owner of the salt appearing at this stage of the proceed- 
ings, the German teamster, who was shoveling out the salt, upon being 
informed of the kind of business he was engaged in, emphasized with 
a few flourishes of a good-sized ax-handle, and not understanding 
English perfectly, thought his life was threatened, and commenced 
hallooing: "I don't want to be kilt! I don't want to be kilt!" and 
stopped work. Mr. Green, finding no salt coming out, came into the 
building to find out what detained it, and meeting the owner, he was 
informed that his stealings were known, and had a few other facts 
called to his attention. He did not adopt the latest rules in such en- 
gagements, but started in on general principles to whip the owner, 
and being much larger than his opponent, he came down on the upper 


side. Having a long beard, the under man ran his fingers through 
the beard, and taking a twist on this, soon brought the belligerent to 
his terms, and Mr. Green returned to town with empty wagons. Suit 
was commenced for the full amount of the salt taken, judgment given, 
and the salt paid for. 

Subsequently Bullock Brothers manufactured salt, but the works, 
after they closed up, remained idle for a long time. 

A transfer of the former interest of Horace Smith was made to E. 
E. Brown and J. T. Green, and subsequently a company of Eastern 
capitalists was formed to develop the salt interest, and the State made 
an appropriation for sinking an artesian well, which was sunk to the 
depth of 2,465 feet. Aside from determining the different formations, 
this well did not result in any practical good. 

The brine's having a regular tide twice a day would indicate that 
the supply from which it comes is not directly underneath. The brine 
oozes up through the muck on the basin, and if not confined by dykes, 
runs off into Salt creek. Where the basin is covered with brine when 
the tide is in, during the middle of the day it will be dry enough to 
walk over, and often a thin layer of salt will cover parts of the 

In the earlier history of Lincoln a well was sunk several hundred 
feet deep, on the east side of Oak, near, if not in, what is now known 
as West Lincoln. This was finally abandoned, as, like the artesian 
well in the postoffice square, no brine of sufficient strength was found 
that would answer for manufacturing purposes. On the banks of Salt 
creek may be found numerous small springs from which salt water 
flows, and it is probable that the material from which to make several 
hundred barrels of good salt per day, in good weather, all runs to waste. 
The water is fine for bathing purposes, and possesses medicinal qual- 
ities. As to the best means of utilizing this brine, there are different 
opinions, but no one has as yet solved the problem, and the question 
will remain for future determination. 



Eemoval of the Capital to Lincoln — Legislative Incidents Preceding 
the Accomplishment op the Woek — Caeeying the Capital Away 
on Wheels. 

The one great epoch in the history of Lincoln, the one event which, 
more than any other, gave the city its start, from which it has grown, 
by reason of its commercial advantages and the push and enterprise of 
its citizens, to its present size and importance among Western cities, 
the turning point in its career, so to speak, was the location of the 
State capital here, in 1867. And the incidents attending the location 
of the seat of government form one of the most interesting chapters 
in the history of the State of Nebraska. 

In 1854, when the Territory of Nebraska was created, Francis Burt, 
of South Carolina, was appointed Territorial Governor by President 
Pierce. On the 7th of October of that year the new Governor ar- 
rived. Although ill at the time, he took the oath of office on the 
16th, only to die on the 18th. Governor Burt, by the organic act, and 
the appointment of the President, was clothed with almost absolute 
power in the location of the Territorial capital ; and although he was 
Governor but two days, he gave expression to sentiments and prefer- 
ences that led the people to believe that had he lived Bellevue would 
have been the Territorial capital. After the death of Governor Burt, 
the Secretary of Nebraska, T. B. Cuming, became acting Governor, 
and soon after taking the oath of office, located the seat of Govern- 
ment at Omaha. 

At that place the first Territorial Legislature met on Tuesday, Jan- 
uary 16, 1855. Omaha continued to be the capital until the admission 
of Nebraska as a State, Avhen the change was made to Lincoln, not, 
however, without much wrangling and a hard fight. Not that many 
attempts were not made to remove the capital to Bellevue, Nebraska 
City, Florence, and other places, for in many sessions of the Territo- 
rial Legislature "capital removal " was a cause of much bitterness — a 
bone of contention. The root of the whole trouble was a pretended 


enumeration of the inhabitants of the Territory in 1854, on which the 
representation in the first Legislature was based, that Legislature hav- 
ing the endorsing of Governor Cuming's location of the capital. The 
North Platte fellows got away with those from the South Platte, and 
hence carried their point. In 1857 an attempt was made to "remove," 
and again in 1858, when the exciting events which were just begin- 
ning in the East and South attracted the attention of the legislators 
from their local bickerings. In a sketch, " The Capital Question in 
Nebraska, and the Location of the Seat of Government at Lincoln," 
by Hon. Charles H. Gere, read before the State Historical Society, 
January 12, 1886, he gives the incidents of these times very fully, 
and from that sketch the account of the capital troubles during the 
year 1 867 is purloined : 

" But the war came to an end, and when the last Territorial Leg- 
islature of 1867 met, the old question of unfair apportionment came 
to the front again. The population of the South Platte section had 
increased until it was about double that of the counties north of the 
troublesome stream. But the superior tactics of the Douglas county 
leaders held its representation down to such an extent that it had but 
seven of the thirteen Councilmen, and twenty-one of the thirty-seven 
Representatives. Two threads of policy had intertwisted to make 
the resistance to a reapportionment based upon actual population, suf- 
ficiently strong to overcome the justice supposed to be latent in the 
minds of statesmen. 

" The first was the fear entertained by Douglas county of the re- 
opening of the capital agitation. The North Platte was now about 
a unit in favor of Omaha as against a southern competitor. The 
second was a political consideration. A reapportionment meant a 
cutting down of the representation from Otoe as well as Douglas 
county, both Democratic strongholds. These counties, with the as- 
sistance of some lesser constituencies on the north of the Platte, which 
sent Democratic delegations, were able to hold a very even balance in 
the Legislature against the Republicans, though the latter had an 
unquestionable majority in the Territory. Now that Statehood was 
imminent, and there were two United States Senators to be elected by a 
State Legislature, soon to be called, in case President Johnson should 
not succeed in his plan of defeating our admission under the enabling 
act of 1864, it was of immense importance to stave off a reapportion- 


nient. Hence for capital reasons the Republicans from the North 
Platte and the Democrats from the South Platte worked in harmony 
with the Douglas county members in preserving a basis of representa- 
tion in its original injustice. The usual bill for a new apportionment 
had been introduced, and passed the Senate, and came to the House, but 
the four votes from Otoe county being solid against it, it was sleeping 
the sleep of the just. In the Speaker's chair was William F. Chapin, 
of Cass, an expert parliamentarian, cool, determined, watchful, and un- 
tiring. The session was drawing to a close, and it was Saturday ; the 
term expired at twelve o'clock, midnight, on the following Monday, 
and, as usual, the results of pretty much all the toil and perspiration 
of the forty days depended upon a ready and rapid dispatch of bus- 
iness during the remaining hours of the session. 

"There was something sinister in the air. It was whispered about 
that morning that the reapportionment bill had at last a majority, in 
case Deweese, of Richardson, who was absent on leave, should put in an 
appearance. A vote or two had been brought over from some of the 
northern districts remote from Omaha, and anxious for Republican 
domination. ' Fun ' was therefore expected. It came very soon after the 
roll was called on the opening of the session. The credentials of D. M. 
Rolfe, of Otoe, who had not been in attendance during the session, but 
who Avas an anti-reapportionist, were called up, and it was moved that 
they be reported to a special committee. The ayes and nays were de- 
manded. Pending roll call, it was moved that a call of the house 
be ordered. The call was ordered, and the doors closed. All the 
members answered to their names but Deweese, of Richardson, and 
Dorsey, of AVashington. Then the other side made a motion that 
further proceedings under the call be dispensed with. The ayes and 
nays were demanded, and there were seventeen ayes and sixteen nays. 
Speaker Chapin announced that he voted 'no,' and that being a tie, 
the motion was lost. An appeal was taken from the decision of the 
chair, and the vote resulted in another tie, and the appeal was de- 
clared lost. The rule is that an affirmative proposition cannot be 
carried by a tie vote, but that all questions are decided in the nega- 
tive. The usual form of putting the question is : 'Shall the decision 
of the chair stand as the judgment of the house?' The negative 
would be that it should not so stand. But in that case a decision of 
the chair is reversed by less than a majority of the members voting, 


■which is, of course, absurd. It was a deadlock. The result was a 
curious demonstration of the absurdity of manipulating a proposition 
-by the use of misleading formulas, so that the negative side of a ques- 
tion may appear in the affirmative. 

" The hours passed, but ' no thoroughfare ' was written on the faces 
of the reapportionists. They said that until they had some assurance 
that a reapportionment bill would be passed before the adjournment, 
they would prevent the transaction of any more business. Secretly 
they expected Deweese, who was rumored to be well enough to attend, 
and they waited for his appearance, but he did not come. The Door- 
keeper and Sergeant-at-Arms had orders to let no man out, and when 
noontide passed and the shadows lengthened, the members sent out 
for refreshments and lunched at their desks. The night came. Some 
of the refreshments had been of a very partisan character, and there 
was blood on the horizon. Many became hilarious, and the lobby 
was exceedingly noisy. From hilarity to pugnacity is but a short 
step. Arms and munitions of war were smuggled in during the 
evening by the outside friends of both sides, and it was pretty confi- 
dently whispered that the conclusion was to be tried by force of re- 

"A little after ten o'clock p. m., Augustus F. Harvey, of Otoe, 
rose, and moved that Speaker Chapin be deposed, and that Dr. Ab- 
bott, of Washington, be elected to fill the vacancy. He then put the 
question to a viva voce vote, and declared the motion adopted and Dr. 
Abbott elected Speaker of the House. The stalwart form of Mr. 
Parmalee, the fighting man of the faction, immediately lifted itself 
from a desk near by, and advanced, with Dr. Abbott, toward the 
chair, backed up by Harvey and a procession of his friends. As he 
placed his foot upon the first step of the dias, Speaker Chapin sud- 
denly unlimbered a Colt's Navy, duly cocked, and warned him briefly 
to the effect that the Pythagorean proposition that two bodies could 
not occupy the same space at the same time was a rule of the House, 
and would be enforced by the combined armament at the command of 
the proper presiding officers. Daniel paused upon the brink of fate, 
and hesitated upon his next step. To hesitate was to be lost. The 
speaker announced that in accordance with the rules of the House in 
cases of great disorder, he declared the House adjourned until nine 
o'clock Monday morning, and sprang for the door. The Omaha 


lobby had promised faithfully, when the crisis came, to guard that 
door, and permit no rebel from the South Platte to escape. The first 
man to reach the door was said to be Kelley, of Platte, who had 
joined the forces of the reapportionists, and it is a tradition that he 
leaped over the legislative stove to get there in time. The door 
was burst open, and before the volunteer guard could recover its 
equilibrium, the seceders had escaped, and were out of the building, 
scattering to the four quarters of the globe. But they had a rendez- 
vous agreed upon in a secret place, and in half an hour they were 
safely entrenched, and on guard against any Sergeant-at-Arms and 
posse that might be dispatched to return them to durance vile. 

"The Abbott House immediately organized, admitted Rolfe, of 
Otoe, to full membership, and proceeded to clear the docket of ac- 
cumulated bills. Members of the lobby trooped in and voted the 
names of the absent, and everything proceeded in an unanimous way 
that must have astonished the walls of the chamber, if they had ears 
and memory. About dawn, however, the situation began to lose its 
roseate hue, and an adjournment was had till Monday morning. 
Before that time arrived the hopelessness of the situation dawned on 
both factions. They perceived that nothing whatever would come of 
the deadlock. Neither party had a quorum. Deweese, of Richard- 
son, could not be brought in to vote for reapportionment, and by 
common consent a peace was concluded, and Monday was spent in 
an amicable settlement of the arrearages of routine business." 

These incidents, however, created a great sensation all over the State, 
and made sectional and partisan feeling run high. The adjournment 
took place on February 18th, and two days later, on the 20th, the 
State Legislature, (chosen at the same election at which the State con- 
stitution had been adopted under the enabling act, held June 2, 1866A 
was called together by Governor Saunders, to accept or reject the 
"fundamental condition" insisted on by Congress as a condition pre- 
cedent to the admission of the State. The condition was that the word 
"white" in the constitution theretofore passed by the Legislature and 
ratified by the people, should not be construed as debarring from fran- 
chise any citizen of Nebraska on account of race or color. On the 
21st day of February, 1867, the second day of the session, the bill 
accepting these conditions passed, and was signed by Governor But- 
ler, who had taken his seat that day. On the first of March Presi- 


dent Johnson issued the proclamation declaring Nebraska a State, the 
State officers were sworn in, and Governor Butler began to prepare 
his call for a special session of the Legislature to put the machinery 
of the State in motion. 

Quoting Hon. 0. H. Gere again: "It was insisted upon by the 
leaders of the Republican party in the south and west, that a reap- 
portionment of members of the Legislature should be one of the ob- 
jects of legislation enumerated in the call. This was opposed by many 
Republicans in Douglas and other northern counties. It was also 
asked, this time by Democrats as well as Republicans, from Otoe as 
well as from Cass and Richardson and the southwestern counties, 
that a clause should be inserted making the location of the seat of 
government of the State one of the objects of the special session. The 
Governor was averse to commencing his administration with a capital 
wrangle, but thought it would be good policy to make use of the sug- 
gestion, for the purpose of securing a reapportionment without a repe- 
tition of the bitter struggle of the winter. He therefore opened 
negotiations with the Douglas county delegation to the coming Leg- 
islature, and promised them that he would leave out the capital 
question, provided they would pledge themselves to sustain a reappor- 
tionment. They flatly refused. They claimed that the Legislature 
could not constitutionally reapportion the representation until after the 
next census, and as for capital removal, they were not brought up in 
the woods to be scared by an owl. The Otoe delegation had, however, 
changed its base. The Senators had been elected and seated, and polit- 
ical considerations had lost their force with the democrats of that 
county. They wanted the capital removed south of the Platte, and they 
promised if the Governor would ' put that in ' they would march 
right up and vote for apportionment. 

" His Excellency had gone too far to retreat, and when his call was 
issued it embraced both capital removal and reapportionment, he hav- 
ing consulted a distinguished constitution constructor, Judge Jamison, . 
of Chicago, on the latter point, and obtained an elaborate opinion that 
it was not only in the power of the Legislature, but its bounden duty,, 
under the constitution, to reapportion the representation at its first, 

"The Legislature met on May 18th, and the lines were quickly- 
drawn for the emergency. Reapportionment was a fixed fact, and a£- 


ter a few days spent in reconnoitering, a solid majority in both houses 
seemed likely to agree upon a scheme for capital location. Mr. Har- 
vey, who had led the assault upon reapportionment at the late session 
of the Territorial Legislature, was an active leader of his late antag- 
onists for relocation. Party affiliations were ruptured all along the 
line, and the new lines were formed on a sectional basis. The bill 
was prepared with deliberation, much caucusing being required before 
it would satisfy the various elements in the movement, and it was in- 
troduced in both houses on the 4th of June. It was entitled, 'An 
act to provide for the location of the seat of government of the State 
of Nebraska, and for the erection of public buildings thereat.' It 
named the Governor, David Butler; the Secretary of State, Thomas 
P. Kennard, and the Auditor, John Gillespie, Commissioners, who 
should select, on or before July 15th, (a date changed by a subsequent 
bill to September 1, 1867,) from lands belonging to the State, lying 
within the counties of Seward, the south half of the counties of Saun- 
ders and Butler, and that portion of Lancaster county lying north of 
the south line of township nine, a suitable site of not less than 640 
acres lying in one body, for a town ; to have the same surveyed and 
named ' Lincoln ; ' and declared the same the permanent seat of govern- 
ment of the State. 

"The bill directed the Commissioners, after the site had been sur- 
veyed, to offer the lots in each alternate block for sale to the highest bid- 
der, after thirty days' advertisement, and after having appraised the 
same; but that no lot should be sold for less than the appraised value. 
The first sale should be held for five successive days at Lincoln, on the 
site, after which sale should be opened for the same duration, first at 
Nebraska City, and next at Omaha. If a sufficient number of lots 
should not by this time be disposed of to defray the expenses of the 
selection and survey, and to erect a building as prescribed in the bill, 
further sales might be advertised and held in Plattsmouth and Brown- 
ville. All moneys derived from these sales, which should be for cash, 
should be deposited in the State Treasury, and there held by the Treas- 
urer as a State building fund. From the proceeds of these sales the 
Commissioners should proceed to advertise for plans and contracts 
and cause to be erected a building suitable for executive offices and 
the accommodation of the two Houses of the Legislature, that might 
be a part of a larger building to be completed in the future, the cost 


of which wing, or part of a building, should not exceed $50,000. 
The bill passed the Senate on the 10th day of June. 

"Those voting for it were; Jesse T. Davis, of Washington ; James 
E. Doom and Lawson Sheldon, of Cass; Oscar Holden, of Johnson; 
Thos. J. Majors, of Nemaha; William A. Presson, of Richardson; 
and Mills S. Reeves and W. W. Wardell, of Otoe.— Eight, 

"The noes were: Harlan Baird, of Dakota; Isaac S. Hascall and 
J. N. H. Patrick, of Douglas ; E. H. Rogers, of Dodge, and Frank 
K. Freeman, of Lincoln. — Five. 

"The House passed the bill two days later, under suspension of the 
rules, forwarding it to its third reading. As in the Senate, so in the 
House, the opponents of the bill resorted to strategy for stampeding 
the friends of the measure, and offered numerous amendments to lo- 
cate the capital, or the university, or the Agricultural College, at Ne- 
braska City, or in the boundaries of Cass or Nemaha counties. But 
all amendments were steadily voted down by a solid phalanx. The 
gentlemen in the House, voting 'aye' on its final passage, were: 
David M. Anderson, John B. Bennett, William M. Hicklin, Aug. F. 
Harvey, and George W. Sproat, of Otoe; J. R. Butler, of Pawnee; 
John Cadman, of Lancaster ; E. L. Clark, of Seward ; W. F. Chapin, 
D. Cole, A. B. Fuller, and Isaac Wiles, of Cass; Geo. Crowe, Wil- 
liam Dailey, Louis Waldter, and C. F. Hayward, of Nemaha; J. M. 
Deweese, Gustavus Duerfeldt, T. J. Collins, and J. T. Haile, of Rich- 
ardson ; Henry Morton, of Dixon ; Dean C. Slade, and John A. Un- 
thank, of Washington ; Oliver Townsend, of Gage, and George P. 
Tucker, of Johnson. — Twenty-five. 

"The noes were: O. W. Baltzley, of Dakota; Henry Beebe, of 
Dodge; George N. Crawford and A. W. Trumble, of Sarpy ; Geo. W. 
Frost, Joel T. Griffin, Martin Dunham, J. M. Woolworth, and Dan 
S. Parmalee, of Douglas, and John A. Wallichs, of Platte. — Ten." 

Early in the capital fight the Omaha newspapers made great sport 
of the removal scheme, and the departure of the Commissioners to 
hunt up a location was the cause of much merriment among them. It 
was not until the Commissioners had announced the location of the 
new capital that the newspapers woke up to the real situation, and then 
there was lively music in the air. Every little technicality that could 
be seized upon was used to defeat the scheme, but of course all efforts 
in that direction failed. 


While the heated contest over the bill was in progress, every ruse r 
stratagem, and dodge, the North Platte party, and particularly the 
Douglas delegation, could devise, was employed to compass the defeat 
of the bill. It so happened that the Otoe delegation were Democrats, 
and Senator Mills S. Reeves, of Nebraska City, had been a bitter rebel, 
who had disliked the name of Lincoln more than he could that of 
Satan. The name of the proposed new town, as the removal bill was 
at first drawn, was "Capital City." Knowing the intense prejudice 
of Senator Reeves, Senator J. H. N. Patrick, of Omaha, rose in his 
place, and moved that the bill be amended by striking out the name 
"Capital City," and substituting that of "Lincoln." 

Instantly Senator Reeves was upon his feet calling, "Mr. Presi- 

"The Senator from Otoe has the floor," said the President of the 

" I second the motion of the Senator from Douglas," said Senator 
Reeves, in a quick, firm voice. 

The South Platte men caught the spirit of the performance, and at 
once adopted the amendment. The bill was passed with the name of 
the illustrious Lincoln in it, and so the new capital became Lincoln. 
Thus Nebraska's capital bears the name it does as the result of an at- 
tempted sharp trick, designed to defeat the removal bill, and not ow- 
ing to the admiration of the first State Legislature for the great war 

During the fight the greatest bitterness was displayed on the part 
of the anti-removalists, and a great many amusing incidents are re- 
lated of the men and times. During the great fight in the last Terri- 
torial Legislature, when pandemonium reigned supreme, and shotguns 
and revolvers played the most significant part in the Legislative pro- 
ceedings, Jim Creighton (as he was called then) heard the noise of the 
contention at one of its fiercest parts, from below in the office of Au- 
ditor Gillespie. Rushing out with uncovered head, and flaming eye 
and cheek, he sought for some weapon of attack. An old mop stick 
belonging to Father Beals was found by the irate Creighton, and seiz- 
ing this, he hurried to the door of the chamber, exclaiming, "I'll clean 

out the whole of those d d South Platte people !" at the same time 

tearing the rag from the mop, in order to make of it a more murderous 
weapon. But before "Jim " got to the door, the South Platte people, led 


by the Speaker, with gun in hand, burst open the door of the chamber 
and escaped. Their numbers were too large for the valorous Creighton, 
and he dropped his mopstick and disappeared. Creighton undoubt- 
edly had plenty of nerve, but nerve has a peculiar faculty of disap- 
pearing under the finger nails on certain occasions, and this was 
undoubtedly one of those occasions. 

During the time the Commissioners were out on their tour of inspec- 
tion, trying to decide where the capital should be located, they came 
to Ashland, and it is just as well to remark right here that Ashland 
lost the site of the capital because of the mosquitoes. There were a 
number of men with the party besides the Commissioners, and upon 
stopping at Ashland over night, the whole party was lodged in the 
upper story of a building, the windows guiltless of glass or blinds; 
that is, all of the party except Governor Butler. He was considered 
the big chief of the party, and was lodged in a lower room, in a bed 
surrounded carefully and completely with mosquito netting. The 
Governor slept soundly and refreshingly, but the other Commis- 
sioners and their friends spent a night of wild, uncontrollable emotion 
and vigorous action, trying as best they could to protect themselves 
against the little pests, whose musical wings and insatiable appetites 
kept the unfortunate ones awake. Morning dawned, and the weary 
ones, among whom was a preacher, together with the one whose sleep 
had been as peaceful and restful as that of a child whose innocence and 
youth bring it sweet dreams and quiet slumbers, departed to view the 
other landscapes. As the little village of Ashland faded into the mist 
across the prairie, the preacher broke the silence by exclaiming : " Well, 
there may be one man who will vote for Ashland, but if Governor 
Butler has any help in his vote, it will surprise me." The mosqui- 
toes had fixed the business so far as Ashland was concerned. It may 
be that a few of those winged songsters yet linger around the old-time 
scenes of this classic (to Nebraska) town, but they can never do the 
harm their ancestors accomplished in the days of '67. 

When the Commissioners had " swung around the circle," and had 
seen all the sites which aspired to become the seat of government of 
the new State, they returned by way of Yankee Hill, the site of John 
Cadman and the Nebraska City schemers. The Yankee Hill people had 
a banquet prepared, with all the delicacies of the season of 1867, on 
Salt creek. The feast was spread on a long table, which fairly groaned 


with the fine cooking of the Yankee Hill ladies. What astonished 
one Commissioner most was that the ladies had in some way supplied 
ice cream, doubtless the first ever seen in Lancaster county. How it 
was gotten out in the wild region of the Salt Basin, the officials never 
knew. Mrs. Cadman and her sister had managed the preparation of 
the feast, and when the Commissioners came over to Lancaster, the 
place which had beaten Yankee Hill for the county seat in 1864, 
and located the capital there, those ladies could hardly forgive them. 
They declined to recognize the Commissioners for six months or more, 
and they finally informed one of the officials that they did not see how 
he failed to be captured by such a feast as they had enjoyed at Yankee 
Hill. Mr. Cadman himself felt pretty sore over the success of Lan- 
caster, but soon got over it, and became a business man in the new 
capital, and still so continues, in company with his son, on North 
Tenth street, between P and Q, though not a resident of the city him- 
self. The business, that of hardware, is conducted by Mr. W. A. 
Cadman, the son. 

The South Platte country never could have agreed on Yankee Hill, 
which was Nebraska City's site. Lancaster was taken as a compro- 
mise, to avoid a split in the section which had carried the removal 
bill, and was then trying to consummate the transaction. The com- 
promise site was successful, being supported by Nebraska City, 
Plattsmouth, and Ashland, and now is three times as large as all of 
them combined. 

But through all the discouragements, the worry, the difficulties, and 
the trials, the Commission persisted, and finally the capitol was lo- 
cated where it now stands. 

The incidents attending the removal of the capitol are also interest- 
ing. The people of Omaha seemed to be determined to prevent the 
taking away of the Government effects, and hence it was deemed better 
to send the State library and other capitol belongings away by night, 
so as to avoid any opposition. Accordingly Auditor Gillespie secured 
a contract from Mr. J. T. Beach, of Lincoln, for moving the goods. 
Mr. Beach had arrived in the town in the spring of 1868, and the 
removal was made in the early winter, probably about the middle of 
December. Mr. Beach is now nearly fifty years of age, the fourth of 
October, 1889, completing the first half century of his existence, and 
he remembers the occurrences of those clays very distinctly. Mr. 


Beach was born in Brown county, Ohio, October 4, 1839, where he 
lived until he was ten years old. At that time his parents moved 
to Indiana, where he lived with them for a number of years. In 
1861 he enlisted in the army, in the Tenth Indiana Infantry, and 
served three years. So that when Mr. Beach came to Nebraska, in 
1868, he had had a recent training that well fitted him for the work 
which he undertook to do. 

Securing the services of a Mr. Carr, yet a resident of Lincoln, to help 
him, Mr. Beach started with a two-horse team, and Mr. Carr with four 
horses, to move the capitol to Lincoln. They crossed the Platte at 
Ashland, the drifting ice making the crossing very difficult and dan- 
gerous. Along with these two men was Luke Cropsey, a son of A. 
J. Cropsey, who rendered valuable assistance during the trip. The 
trip occupied nearly a day and a half, for on the second morning, (Sat- 
urday,) at 11 o'clock, the party, with the two covered wagons, drove 
into Omaha, and put up at the old checkered barn, one of the early 
landmarks of the "city by the Big Muddy." In the afternoon Mr. 
Beach went to the State House, and had a conference with Mr. Gilles- 
pie, who strictly enjoined upon him secrecy as to his mission to Omaha, 
and made arrangements for loading the furniture. After night-fall 
of Sunday the library, furniture, desks, and everything else that was 
wanted at the new capitol, were loaded in the two covered wagons, 
ready for the return trip. At 4 o'clock Monday morning the start 
for Lincoln was made, and miles of ground had been covered before 
the people of Omaha awoke. Mr. Beach and his assistants came by 
the way of Plattsmouth. When that hamlet was reached the snow 
was coming down fiercely and heavily, and a stop was made until 
morning, as it was considered too dangerous to cross the river in the 
condition in which the ferry then was. About ten o'clock in the 
morning the ferry was repaired, and the party crossed the river with 
much inconvenience and considerable danger. The journey was con- 
tinued until night-fall, through a blinding snow storm. As night 
approached Stove creek was several miles distant, and the only shel- 
ter visible was the dugout of a settler on the open prairie. Going to 
the door of this cabin Mr. Beach asked for shelter for the night for 
himself and two companions, and a place to shield their teams from 
the elements. The settler refused, on the ground of want of accom- 
modations ; but our travelers were not thus to be refused, and upon 


pressing their need were allowed to shelter their horses by a hay 
stack, and bunk themselves upon the floor of the cabin. The night 
passed, and when the morning came Mr. Beach informed his host 
that the party was without money, told him what their errand was, 
and offered to pawn two watches as security for the payment of the 
amount due for the night's lodging and breakfast. This the old 
settler refused, and the teamsters departed for Lincoln, which place 
they reached on Wednesday night, promising to send the pay for their 
lodging as soon as they reached Lincoln, which promise they kept. 
Five days the journey occupied, and when it was finished the whole 
of the State library and other needed capitol appliances were safely 
lodged within the walls of the building. 

The cost of transfering this property was over $100. Mr. Beach 
took $60 in money with him and a check of $40 on a Lincoln bank. 
When the money was exhausted, in Omaha, Mr. Beach tried to cash 
the check, but the Omaha banks proposed to charge him a ruinous 
discount, and had it not been for the kindly assistance of Mr. Gil- 
lespie, who cashed the check free of charge, a row would have re- 
sulted. Mr. Carr avers that he has never been paid in full for the 
services of himself and his four-horse team while engaged in this en- 
terprise, and as no one seems to dispute his claim, it is probable that 
some one, possibly the city of Lincoln, owes him more than a simple 
debt of gratitude. But the whole affair was conducted in a most sat- 
isfactory manner, and the capitol was in reality lost to Omaha. 

At that time the people of Omaha were not very well pleased with 
the course events were taking, which the following incident will illus- 
trate, and will also serve to show how carefully the work of removal 
was done. A few days after the library had disappeared across the 
prairie, John B. Meredith, of Omaha, dropped into Auditor Gilles- 
pie's office in the afternoon, and, noticing the empty shelves, inquired 
where the library had gone. 

"It has gone to Lincoln," said Mr. Gillespie. 

"Who sent it there, and by what authority was it sent?" was Mr. 
Meredith's next question. 

" I sent it there," said Gillespie, " by the authority vested in me by 
the State Legislature." 

Meredith left, and soon Gen. S. A. Strickland stormed into the Au- 
ditor's office, with about the same interrogatories, which were answered 
in about the same manner. 


"Where is that library?" said the General. 

"In Lincoln, the State capital, " calmly answered Gillespie. 

" By the eternals that library is coming back here, and it 's coming 
light away," stormed Strickland. 

All this bluster and blow did not disturb Gillespie, who quietly 
asked how the General's purpose was to be accomplished. Gen- 
Strickland then said that the library belonged to the Territory of 
Nebraska, and as Omaha was the capital of the Territory, the library 
belonged to Omaha, and that he would get an order from the Secretary 
-of the Interior for its replacement in Omaha. Mr. Gillespie smiled, 
and merely asked that when Gen. Strickland received the letter he 
might be allowed a chance to read it, which the General readily ac- 
-ceded to. Matters quieted down, and remained so for some weeks, 
when one day Mr. Gillespie asked Gen. Strickland if he had heard 
from Washington yet. The General unwillingly admitted that he 
had, and that the reply was unfavorable to Omaha's claims. This 
ended the skirmishing and kicking. The capital was removed, and 
since then no attempt of alarming proportions has been made to have 
the capital location changed. 



The Difficulties Experienced in Building the New Capitol — How 
Omaha Opposition Delayed the Woek— The Final Success and 
Meeting of the Fiest Legislature in Lincoln. 

The days of the capital removal, capital location, and capitol build- 
ing, were full of stirring events, times of intense interest to the peo- 
ple then and now, when serious situations, which demanded prompt, 
energetic, and clear headed action, were often met with. During these 
times, Hon. John Gillespie, State Auditor, and one of the Commis- 
sioners to locate the capital, played an important part, and to him 
the authors of this history are indebted for the following, which was 
contributed entire by him : 

The act authorizing the capitol location appointed the Governor, 
Secretary, and Auditor, Commissioners to seek a location, within the 
boundaries of Lancaster, Saunders, Butler, Seward, and the north half 
of Saline county, to be located upon State Lands, of not less than 640 
acres in one tract, and to lay out and plat the same in lots, blocks, 
streets, and alleys, and make proper reservations for the several State 
institutions ; when the same was completed to advertise the lots for 
sale at public auction to the highest bidder, and when the sales 
amounted to the aggregate of $50,000, then in that event to advertise 
for plans and specifications for a capitol building, and let the con- 
tract for building the same. The Legislature did not appropriate a, 
dollar from the Treasury to carry out the provisions of the act, but 
all incidental expenses, as well as the completion of a capitol build- 
ing, depended upon receipts from the sale of lots. The Commissioners 
well understood that the success of the enterprise depended upon a 
most favorable selection for the future capital of the State. Other- 
wise a most stupendous failure, that would result in ignominy to the 
movers, especially the Commissioners having it in charge, would fol- 
low. After the passage of the act, and before the Commissioners 
entered upon their work, difficulties multiplied, owing to the opposi- 
tion of the North Platte people, and especially from the citizens of 


The citizens of that city were particularly opposed to the capital's 
removal from their midst, and commenced an opposition to prevent 
the carrying out of the enterprise. The Commissioners had to enter 
into a bond of $60,000 each for the faithful performance of duty. They 
did not hope or expect that Omaha citizens would sign their bonds, 
and had to look to other localities. Nebraska City was in full sym- 
pathy with the removal of the capital from Omaha to the South Platte 
country, and her best citizens volunteered as bondsmen for the Com- 
missioners, an offer which was most duly accepted and appreciated. 

But there arose another difficulty : the bonds had to be approved 
by one of the Judges of the Supreme Court, and to be deposited with 
the State Treasurer, Mr. August Kountze, of Omaha. Previous to 
filing the bonds, a Mr. James E. Doom, a member from Cass county, 
(who voted for the capital removal,) reported to the Omaha newspa- 
pers that the time prescribed by law for filing the bonds of the Com- 
missioners had expired. So the Omaha Republican came out with a 
"double header," stating that the capital-removal enterprise had failed, 
by virtue of the Commissioners not having filed their bonds in time, 
as prescribed by law, and therefore could not give good title to the 
lands. The writer hereof had started that morning by steamboat to 
Nebraska City, to have the bonds approved by Hon. O. P. Mason, 
Chief Justice, preparatory to filing them. News had reached that city 
of the announcement made in the Omaha papers. In consultation 
with the Chief Justice, he said there was nothing in the statement, nor 
had the time prescribed elapsed. The bonds were returned to Omaha. 
Governor Butler and Secretary Kennard, accompanied by C. H. Gere 
and Col. C. S. Chase, repaired to the First National Bank of that city, 
and tendered the bonds to the State Treasurer for filing. Mr. Kountze 
said to them that he would not file the bonds, as they were not valid, 
the time for filing by law having passed ; but he would place them 
in the vault. The proposition was satisfactory to the other two Com- 
missioners, and they left. 

The writer lived in Omaha at that time, and had to meet the abuse 
and denunciations of her citizens, who openly charged the capital re- 
movers as "land-grabbers" and enemies of Omaha. Several of her 
leading citizens tried by every means in their power to have me not 
file the bonds, and let the act become "null and void." One, now high 
up in authority in this State, spent several hours with me at my office, 


in the old capitol at Omaha, trying to persuade me not to file the 
bonds, and have the law become void, claiming that if carried out it 
would "disrupt the party." The interview was finally cut short by 
my informing him that " I was into it, and would see it through." 
The Commissioners, after looking the field over which was designated 
by the act, selected the site where the city now stands. This conclu- 
sion was arrived at by a careful examination of a State map and the 
general topography of the country. They concluded that in the future, 
when railroads were built south of the Platte, this point would be 
easily reached and accessible from any direction. And a further con- 
sideration, at that time deemed important, was the great salt deposits 
near by, considered valuable. 

But in this selection no one, except the few homesteaders on the 
town site, was pleased. The citizens of Nebraska City wanted the 
■capital located at Yankee Hill, on the line of the "steam-wagon road" 
west to the mountains. Plattsmouth wanted the capital at Ashland, 
her citizens offering to guarantee $50,000 worth of lots in case we 
located at Ashland. Brownville wanted the capital located at Cam- 
den, on the Blue river, as they had a railroad survey west by way of 
Camden and Fort Kearney. The Commissioners Mere beset by the 
friends of their favorite localities, all of which had their land "syndi- 
cates" formed; but the location made was upon neutral grounds, and 
one which proved the wisest selection, as the other interested localities 
compromised upon this one, which could not have been effected at any 
other point. 

After having the town site surveyed and platted, the Commissioners 
appointed a day for the sale of lots at auction, to take place upon the 
grounds. Thereupon arose another serious difficulty, that seemed to 
threaten the defeat of the whole enterprise. The act required the Com- 
missioners to deposit the money received from the sale of lots with the 
State Treasurer, to be designated, separate from any other fund, as the 
Xl State Building Fund," and all expenses for incidentals, buildings, 
etc., to be paid out by the Treasurer, upon the order of the Auditor, 
the same as other State funds. The writer was informed by a leading 
attorney of Omaha that some of the leading citizens of that city had 
requested him to commence suit by enjoining the Commissioners, and 
attaching the money in the hands of the State Treasurer as soon as 
deposited with him, and thereby tie up the same, and by years of litiga- 


tion prevent the commencement of the capitol building. He informed 
me his fee was considered too large, and he was not employed, but that 
such action would be taken as soon as the money resulting from the 
sale of lots was duly deposited by the Commissioners with the State 
Treasurer. The Commissioners, after considering the possibility of 
such action by the enemies of the capital removal, thereby defeating 
the act of the Legislature authorizing the removal of the capital, 
called a meeting of the citizens signing their bonds, to be held at Ne- 
braska City just previous to the day of the first sale of lots, and laid 
the situation before them. They advised us to proceed with the sale 
of lots, and prepared a written request, asking us not to deposit the 
proceeds of the lot sales with the State Treasurer, but to use the money 
in carrying out the provisions of the law, paying for the erection of a 
capital, and report to the coming Legislature our actions in full. 

The sale of lots came off, and was reasonably successful ; so much so 
that the Commissioners felt authorized to proceed to advertise for plans 
and specifications, and to let the contract for the building. The funds 
were kept in hiding, where no injunction or attachment could find them. 
I was often asked by certain parties of Omaha why the money for the 
sale of Lincoln lots was not placed with the State Treasurer, as the 
law directed. When pressed, one of the citizens said they wanted to 
enjoin the funds in the hands of the Treasurer from being paid out, 
and thus keep us from building the capitol at Lincoln. I informed 
the party that the funds would be turned over to the State Treasurer 
the next day to pay his bill for advertising. The bills of the Repub- 
lican and Herald for advertising lot sales, for plans and specifications, 
and for letting the contract, had been handed in. I deposited with 
the Treasurer a sum sufficient to pay their bills, and if they wished 
to enjoin payment, all right. The orders of payment were given, 
the money paid out, the Treasurer receipting for the same, and ac- 
knowledged the authority of the Board by paying the money out on 
the order of the Auditor of State. 

The first sale of lots took place in the fall of 1867. The follow- 
ing Legislature convened the first of January, 1869; hence the neces- 
sity of getting the capitol building under contract at as early a day as 
possible, having the summer of 1868 to complete the same. As there 
were no railroads, lumber had to be hauled from a point six miles east 
of Nebraska City, on the Council Bluffs & St. Joseph railroad. Stone 


quarries had to be found somewhere for building material. The Com- 
missioners advertised for plans in the Omaha, Plattsmouth, and Ne- 
braska City papers. The time drawing near, we found that the Omaha 
architects would pay no attention to our advertisement, and the result 
would be no plans offered, so we sent a copy of our "ad" to the Chi- 
cago Tribune, which caught the eye of a fifth-rate architect, Mr. James 
Morris, who could obtain no work in that city, and he hastily pre- 
pared a plan and presented the same on the day set. It being the only 
plan presented, the Commissioners were more than pleased to adopt it. 
The plan contemplated a central building, with wings to be attached 
afterward, which, if added, would have made a symmetrical building, 
but without the wings not very imposing. Consequently, in after 
years the Commissioners had to bear the brunt of many jeers on their 
architectural choice for a capital building. 

We advertised for letting the contract, and as in the former case, 
but one bid was offered, that one by Mr. Joseph Ward, of Chicago, 
which was also accepted. He commenced at once, and had the exca- 
vation made and part of the foundation laid in the fall of 1867, in- 
tending in the spring of 1868 to push the work as fast as possible, and 
have the building completed in time for the Governor to announce by 
proclamation the completion of the capitol, and that the next Legisla- 
ture would convene thereat on the first Thursday of January, 1869. 

A stone quarry of blue limestone was found twelve miles south 
on Salt creek, and the contractor instructed to use the same ; but after 
using it on the east side of the building, on the first story, it became 
shelly, and this quarry had to be abandoned. A man was sent out 
on horseback, who prospected a number of clays all the streams in 
the vicinity for out-cropping stone without success, but finally visited 
Beatrice and reported a magnesia limestone in abundance, and easily 
dressed, which would harden by exposure. This stone was adopted, 
and all the teams that could be hired put on the road for Beatrice, 
(fifty miles,) to keep the work moving. This worked well for a short 
time, until we were notified by the contractor that the bridge over 
Salt creek had become dangerous, and that the owners of teams would 
not risk crossing, and that (he County Commissioners refused to re- 
pair the bridge. This required our presence to get the Commissioners 
to repair the bridge; all of which, with bad roads and the intermina- 
ble sloughs and mud-holes, made the getting of stone from Beatrice, 


and the lumber from Iowa, slow, difficult, and expensive, and the 
summer rapidly passing away. The Commissioners were fully im- 
pressed that in case of failure to complete the capitol in time for the 
convening of the Legislature the coming January, the session would 
have to be held at Omaha, and the strong probabilities were that 
Lincoln would never see a session held there, which no doubt would 
have been true. The contractor was constantly being urged to em- 
ploy all the mechanics that could be worked to advantage, and con- 
sequently he had stone-cutters and carpenters sent out. from Chicago. 
About the 1st of June, 1868, I received a letter at Omaha from 
the contractor, that he had thrown up the job, and all work had 
stopped, on account of a difficulty with the architect; that a number 
of his stone-cutters had left for Chicago; and to come down and 
make settlement with him. This was a terrible crisis, and visions of 
a most glorious failure of the whole enterprise loomed up most too 
prominent for a calm view of the situation ; but something had to be 
done, and done quickly. Unfortunately neither of the other two 
Commissioners were at Omaha at the time, the Governor being at his 
home at Pawnee, and the Secretary at his home at De Soto. I sent a 
messenger from Omaha, by steam-boat, to Nebraska City, with an 
order to the " Elephant Stable " for a pony to carry a message to the 
•Governor explaining the situation, and asking him to meet me at 
Lincoln the next day without fail. I took stage next morning for 
Council Bluffs, to take train for East Nebraska City, intending to 
take stage from that point to Lincoln, but owing to the stage sticking 
in the mud half-way between the two cities, I saw the train pull out, 
leaving several other passengers with myself behind. I returned to 
-Omaha by the next stage, hired a livery team, and started for Lincoln 
via the rope ferry across the Platte river near Ashland, being delayed 
two hours in finding the ferryman. When I arrived at Lincoln, 
about 11 A.M. the next day, I found the citizens much disheartened, 
and fearful that the work on the building would not be renewed. I 
soon set their minds at rest on that point. Dunbar & Bailey, who 
owned the only livery stable in the city, and had the contract to 
deliver the stone, had drawn off all their teams, a number of the 
mechanics had left, and the prospect was blue enough. I waited 
all next day and the following day till noon for the arrival of the 
Governor. He did not put in an appearance. I called in James 


Sweet, State Treasurer, who had just arrived from Nebraska City, 
to be present when I should summon the architect and contractor, 
and hear their differences, previously having refused to hear either 
one until the arrival of the Governor. I requested Mr. Morris, 
(architect,) to bring with him the plans and specifications, and meet 
me at my room in the Cadman House at 1 p. M. He repaired to the 
shop on the capitol grounds, and was in the act of taking the plans^ 
from the contractor's desk, when the contractor came in and kicked 
him out of the shop. Both being English, the backs of both were 
"high" when they reached my room. I first heard the architect, 
then the contractor. The lie passed frequently between them; but 
in getting at the facts I found the difference arose about the ma- 
terial to go into the interior walls of the building. The contractor 
claimed that it should be sandstone, as that material was at hand, and 
its use would enable him to proceed with the work. The architect 
claimed that the walls should be brick. I asked Mr. Sweet to turn 
to the specification, which said the walls should be brick, "if brick 
could be had, otherwise stone." I said I would settle that point, and 
as there were no brick here, nor none being made, instructed the con- 
tractor to put up the walls with stone. The architect objected, and 
said I was only one of the Commissioners. I told him that was law, 
and the other two would confirm the decision. I explained to both 
that if they did not propose to each do his duty, and push the work 
to completion, we would remove both. I was satisfied that the arch- 
itect wished the contractor to leave, so he could become contractor as 
well. Both shook hands, and each promised to do his best to com- 
plete the building in time for the coming session. I instructed Dun- 
bar & Bailey to hire all the teams they could get in the country, and 
rush the stone from Beatrice, and on my return to Omaha employed 
twelve stonecutters and sent them by wagon post haste for Lincoln, 
and work was resumed with considerable energy. 

About two weeks afterward Mr. Ward, contractor, came into my 
office at Omaha with a Mr. Sweet, on his way to Chicago to buy doors, 
sash, glass, hardware, etc. He had an estimate for $2,600, of which 
$1,000 was to go to Mr. Sweet for money advanced to pay his men 
before leaving. It was then about four o'clock p.m. We had no 
money on hand, but I dare not tell him so, or else there would have 
been a "cyclone" at hand. I asked him where he was stopping. 


He said at the " Planters," and that they would leave the next morn- 
ing on the 4 a.m. train. I told him I would see him that evening 
at the hotel. Where the twenty-six hundred dollars was to come 
from, I did not know. After "bluing" over the situation for a 
short time, I went to the office of W. J. Hahn, County Treasurer, 
and asked if he had on hand any "State sinking funds" to be turned 
over. His reply was that he had. I told him I wanted $2,600, and 
as our next sale of lots took place the next week, I would turn that 
amount into the State Treasury at Lincoln and bring back the 
Treasurer's receipt. He gave me his check for $2,600 on the First 
National Bank of Omaha, and I started off to get it cashed before 
closing, but found I was too late. I explained the situation to Mr. 
Aug. Kountze. He said it was contrary to custom, but he opened 
the vault and paid me the money, which was carried to Mr. Ward, 
and delivered in a manner that conveyed the impression that the 
enterprise should not fail for want of funds. Thus this difficulty 
was bridged over, and the receipt of the Treasurer was forwarded Mr. 
Hahn the following week for the money deposited. 

The next crisis to be met was more serious, and not so easily passed 
over. Our last sale of lots was to be in September, 1868. Hoping 
thereby to realize enough to complete and pay for the building, we 
had requested Sweet & Brock, bankers at Lincoln, to advance to the 
contractor money as he needed it, before the sale of lots took place, 
and also requested the contractor to put off paying for material until 
after the sale, hoping that we would not be pressed for funds. But 
in this we were disappointed. I received a letter from Nelson C 
Brock that their bank had advanced $2,000 to the contractor, and call- 
ing for the return of the same at once; also by the same mail a letter 
from the contractor saying that he would discharge all the stone-cut- 
ters and laborers the coming Saturday, and would require $2,000 to 
liay them off. Unfortunately the other two Commissioners were not 
at the capital, and this emergency had to be met. I started for Ne- 
braska City, and called upon James Thorn, County Treasurer, and 
found he had on hand sinking funds sufficient to meet the emergencies, 
and willingly offered to turn it over and take the Treasurer's receipt 
for the same. Thus this last difficulty was bridged over. 

In 1871 a constitutional convention met in Lincoln and commenced 
to investigate County Treasurers, supposing they were loaning State 


funds. Mr. Thorn, with others, was called upon for a report of the 
collections and deposits. This circumstance was brought to light and 
he was asked to explain. He referred the explanation to myself. I 
went before the committee, of which General Victor Vifquain was 
chairman, and stated the circumstance that a crisis had arrived in the 
completion of the capitol ; that no funds were on hand, and the "sink- 
ing fund" was used for six weeks to help out the "building fund." 
If such had not been done the capitol building would never have been 
finished, and Lincoln would not have been here to-day. The com- 
mittee reported that no censure attached to any one. 

After the election of 1868 and the Governor's proclamation had 
been issued announcing the completion of the capitol, and that the 
session of the Legislature of January following would convene at 
Lincoln, Hon. C. B. Taylor, Senator-elect from Douglas county, asked 
me if it was true, as set forth in the Governor's message, that the 
capitol was completed, and if there were any hotel accommodations at 
Lincoln. Being answered in the affirmative, he said they would "go 
down and adjourn the Legislature to Omaha, where they could have 
accommodations." On the first day of January, 1869, I opened the 
Auditor's office in the new capitol. On the day before convening, the 
Omaha and other delegations arrived in Lincoln, in a blinding snow 
storm, by private conveyances. I met Taylor at the Atwood House 
at dinner. He said he had been looking out to see the new capitol, 
but had failed to see it. I told him it was on account of the snow 
storm, but we had a capitol ready. He remarked that I had informed 
him correctly about the hotel accommodations, and if on presentation 
the capitol building looked as well, he would have no fault to find. 
After dinner I piloted him, Tom Majors, and other members, across 
the prairie to the capitol building. "When we entered, the plasterers 
were finishing up in the lower halls. Taylor reminded me of the 
Governor's message issued some time previous, saying "the capitol 
was finished." Majors and others at once expressed their pleasure and 
surprise at seeing such a building. Taylor, after looking into the 
Senate Chamber, asked to see the Eepresentative Hall. When he had 
seen these halls, with their new carpets, new chairs, and bright fur- 
niture, he was much impressed with the success which the Commis- 
sioners had achieved, and then and there promised that the Douglas 
delegation would make no fight on the capitol. 


On organization of the Senate, C. B. Taylor was elected President. 
Next day he came into my office and drafted a bill appropriating 
$16,000 to grade and fence the capitol grounds and finish the dome 
of the capitol. A few days after he drafted a bill to continue the 
Commissioners for two years longer, to sell the unsold lots and blocks 
and build the State University, Agricultural College, and Insane Asy- 
lum. Both bills became laws. 

After the meeting of the first Legislature confidence was established, 
and lots in Lincoln brought better prices at auction. There were no 
difficulties in the way to build the other institutions. When the 
next two years had passed the Commissioners reported the university 
and asylum completed, paid for, and over 300 lots unsold. . 



An Interesting Document Dealing with Capital Removal — Report of- 
the Commissioners Appointed to Select a Site for the New Seat 
of Government. 

One of the most interesting documents of the early days is the re- 
port to the Legislature of 1869 of the Commissioners appointed to 
locate the State capital. As far as known, there is only one of these 
reports in existence to-day, it being a document of fifty pages, bearing 
the imprint of "St. A. D. Balcombe, State Printer, Omaha, Neb.," 
and also bearing the legend, "Published by Authority." Through 
the kindness of Hon. John Gillespie the authors of this book are 
enabled to reproduce those parts of the report that are of especial in- 
terest, together with a synopsis of the other contents of the pamphlet. 
The document is as follows : 


" To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
State of Nebraska: 

"In pursuance of the requirements of the act of the Legislature 
entitled, 'An Act to provide for the location of the Seat of Govern- 
ment of the State of Nebraska, and for the erection of public build- 
ings thereat,' approved June 14, 1867, the Commissioners thereby 
appointed assembled at Nebraska City upon Thursday, June 18, 1867, 
and prepared for a personal examination of the district, viz.: 'The 
county of Seward, the south half of the counties of Saunders and But- 
ler, and that portion of the county of Lancaster lying north of the 
south line of township nine,' within which a selection was to be made 
for the contemplated seat, of the State Government. 

"Having provided an outfit, and employing Mr. Aug. F. Harvey 
as surveyor, to ascertain the lines of the proposed sites, we left Ne- 
braska City on the afternoon of the 18th day of July, and arrived at 
Lancaster, in Lancaster county, on the evening of the 19th. The 


20th and 22d were occupied in a full examination of the town sites of 
Saline City, or 'Yankee Hill,' as it is more familiarly known, and 
Lancaster, the adjacent lands on both sides of Salt creek, and the 
stone quarries from two to eight miles south of the village. 

On the twenty-third of July the Commissioners went down the 
valley of Salt creek, examining on the way a very beautiful and level 
plateau about six miles from Lancaster, and near Stevens creek, on 
the east side of Salt. Another site on the west side of Salt, on an 
elevated table near Rock creek, was shown us by parties living in 
the neighborhood, and who guided us on an examining trip around 
its lines. 

"The 23d was spent in reviewing the townsite proposed on the 
high land west of and adjacent to the village of Ashland, in the 
southeast corner of Saunders county. The surface of this site de- 
clined gently to the north and east, sufficiently for thorough drainage, 
and is of such evenness that but little expense will ever be involved 
for grading. From any part of it a widely extended panorama is 
spread, embracing, as it rises, many square miles in the valley of the 
Platte and Salt creek. Timber is abundant, and inexhaustible quar- 
ries of fine rock outcrop along the bluffs near the mouth of Salt 
creek and along the Platte, within one to four and five miles from 
the town. Salt creek affords excellent water power for manufactur- 
ing purposes in Ashland. The distance of the site is about thirty- 
five miles from Plattsmouth, near the efflux of Salt creek to the 

" On the 25th we went northwesterly along the old California trail 
through Saunders county, covering the Wahoo river near its head, and 
arriving at nightfall at the residence of J. D. Brown, in Butler 
county. Upon this route we observed no situation of commanding 

"Leaving Mr. Brown's on the 26th, we looked over the flat prai- 
rie between the heads of Oak creek and the eastern tributaries of the 
Blue, in towns thirteen and fourteen north, range three and four east, 
in Butler county. Here is a wide tract of unbroken plain, upon 
which we drove for six hours without seeing a depression in the sur- 
face at either hand. We struck the Blue in town fourteen north, 
range two east, passing down that stream. After a drive that day, 
(including some diversions from the direct route to examine points 


which looked well at a distance,) of over seventy-five miles, we ar- 
rived at Seward Center, in the fork of Plum creek and the Blue, 
and opposite the mouth of Lincoln creek. All of the proposed site 
here could be seen at a glance. It lies on a high table between the 
streams named, is level, is surrounded by fertile valleys, adjacent to 
timber, stone, and first-class water power, and is remarkable for 
healthiness of situation. 

"The advantages, indeed, are possessed in an equal degree by Mil- 
ford, six to eight miles below Seward, and by Camden, in the fork of 
the Blue and West Blue, except that the last-named site was in a lower 
elevation. "We remained in Milford over night, and on the 27th 
turned eastward, and arrived at Saline City in the evening. 

"On the 29th we made a more thorough examination of 'Yankee 
Hill' and Lancaster, and their surroundings. At the last-named 
point the favorable impressions received at first sight, on the 19th,. 
were confirmed. We found it gently undulating, its principal eleva- 
tion being near the center of the proposed new site, the village already 
established being in the midst of a thrifty and considerable agricul- 
tural population, rich timber and water-power available within short 
distances, the center of the great saline region within two miles; and, 
in addition to all other claims, the especial advantage was that the 
location was at the center of a circle of about 110 miles in diameter, 
along or near the circumference of which are the Kansas State line, 
directly south, and the important towns of Pawnee City, Nebraska 
City, Plattsmouth, Omaha, Fremont, and Columbus. 

" The State lands which we observed in our tour were mainly away 
from considerable bodies of timber or important water courses, and 
did not possess, to all appearances, any particular advantages, nor was 
the title of them so far vested in the State at that time (the report ot 
the selection of lands by the Governor, under the acts of Congress ad- 
mitting the State to the Union, not having then been certified or ap- 
proved at Washington) as to warrant us in making a selection where 
there was a possibility that the title might fail, or in waiting until, by 
confirmation at Washington, the title had been secured. 

"Under these circumstances we entertained the proposition of the 
people residing in the vicinity of Lancaster, offering to convey to the 
State in fee simple the west half of the west half of section 25, the east 
half and the southwest quarter of section 26, which, with the north- 


west quarter of section 26, (the last-named quarter being saline land,) 
all in town 10, range 6 east, the whole embracing 800 acres, and upon 
which it was proposed to erect the new town. In addition, the Trust- 
ees of the Lancaster Seminary Association proposed to convey to the 
State, for an addition to the site named in the foregoing proposition, 
the town site of Lancaster, reserving certain lots therein, which had 
been disposed of in whole or in part, to the purchasers thereof, and 
the owners of said lots reserved agreeing to a resurvey of the town 
site as an addition to Lincoln, and the acceptance of lots according to 
the new survey in lieu of those acquired from the Seminary Company 
and surrendered by them. 

"James Sweet, Esq., was appointed conveyancer to the Commis- 
sioners, and after his report upon the sufficiency of the titles proposed 
to be made to the State, (which report will be found in the appendix 
hereto, marked 'A,') and a careful consideration of all the circum- 
stances of the condition of the State lands, the advantages of the sit- 
uation, its central position, and the value of its surroundings over a 
district of over twelve thousand square miles of rich agricultural 
country, it was determined to accept the proposition made by the own- 
ers of the land, if upon a ballot the Commissioners should docidr 
upon a location at this point. 

" In the afternoon of the 29th of July we assembled in the house 
of W. T. Donovan, of Lancaster, and after a comparison of notes 
and the discussion of advantages of the many points examined, pro- 
ceeded to ballot for a choice. 

"On the first ballot Lancaster received two votes and Ashland one. 
On the second vote Lancaster received the unanimous vote of the 

" The Governor then announced the result to the people, many of 
whom were outside awaiting the decision. 

" Having performed the business of the location of the seat of gov- 
ernment, the Commissioners returned to Omaha, leaving Mr. Harvey 
at Lancaster to do the surveying necessary to locate the depressions 
and elevations on the town site, preliminary to his furnishing a design 
for laying off the blocks, streets, and reservations, and making a plat 
thereof. He completed that labor on the 1 2th of August, when he 
notified the Commissioners, and they again assembled at Lancaster, 
on the 13th day of August. On the 14th the Commissioners formally 


announced the founding of the town of Lincoln as the seat of govern- 
ment of Nebraska, in the following proclamation : 

"To Whom it May Concern: Know ye, that on this the 14th day of August, 
A. r>. 1867, by virtue of authority in us vested, and in accordance with an act to 
provide for the location of the seat of government of the State of Nebraska, and 
for the erection of public buildings thereat, approved June 14, 1867, we, the under- 
signed Commissioners, on this the 14th day of August, A.D. 1867, have by actual 
view selected the following described lands belonging to the State, viz. : 

"S, E. i of section 23; the W. i of the N.W. I, N.W. I and the W. J of the S.W. 
i, of section 25, the W. J of section 25, of township No. 10 north, of range No. 6 
east of the 6th principal meridian, and have located the seat of government of the 
State of Nebraska upon said described lands as a town to be known as Lincoln. 

"Further, that we have, upon the day above mentioned, designated within said 
location the reservation for the Capitol Building, State University, and Agricult- 
ural College, parks, and other reservations contemplated in the aforesaid act, which 
will be properly designated upon a plat and filed in the office of the Secretary of 

"Done at Lincoln, Lancaster county, Nebraska, this 14th day of August, A.D. 




"On the following day Messrs. A. F. Harvey and A. B. Smith, en- 
gineers, with a corps of assistants, who were sworn to perform faith- 
ful service, commenced the survey of the town. The design is 
calculated for the making of a beautiful town. The streets are one 
hundred and one hundred and twenty -five feet wide, and calculated to 
be improved on all except O and Ninth streets, and the other business 
streets around the Market Square and Court House Square, with a 
street park outside of the curb line ; as for instance, on the one hundred 
foot streets, pavements of twelve feet wide and park or double row of 
trees, with grass plot between, twelve feet wide outside the pavements ; 
and on the one hundred and twenty-five foot streets the pavement and 
park to be each fifteen feet wide. This will leave a roadway of fifty- 
two feet on the streets one hundred feet wide, and sixty feet wide on 
the wide streets, while on the business streets a ninety foot roadway 
will be ample room for all demands of trade. 

" Reservations of nearly twelve acres each were made for the State 
House, State University, and city Park, these being at about equal 
distance from each other. 

"Reservations of one block each for a Court House for Lancaster 


-county, for a City Hall and market space, for a State Historical Li- 
brary Association, and several other squares, in proper location, for 
Public Schools." 

The Commissioners have also marked upon the book of record of 
lots, reservations of three lots each for the following religious denom- 
inations, viz : 

Lots 7, 8, 9, block 65, for the Roman Catholic church. 

Lots 10, 11, 12, in block 67, for the Methodist Episcopal church. 

Lots 10, 11, 12, in block 87, for the Baptist church. 

Lots 10, 11, 12, in block 89, for the Congregational society. 

Lots 1, 2, 3, in block 91, for the German Methodist Episcopal 

Lots 7, 8, 9, in block 97, for the Lutheran congregation. 

Lots 10, 11, 12, in block 99, for the Protestant Methodist church. 

-Lots 16, 17, 18, in block 101, for the Christian church. 

Lots 10, 11, 12, in block 119, for the Presbyterian church. 

Lots 7, 8, 9, in block 121, for the Protestant Episcopal church. 

These reservations were made with the understanding with the par- 
ties making the selection on behalf of the several denominations, that 
the Legislature would require of them a condition that the property 
should only be used for religious purposes, and that sometime would 
be fixed within which suitable houses of worship, costing some rea- 
sonable minimum amount, should be erected. 

"The Commissioners have also reserved lot 13, in block 101, for 
the use of the Independent Order of Good Templars; lot 14, in block 
101, for the Independent Order of Odd Fellows; and lot 15, in block 
101, for the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons. "We respectfully 
ask the Legislature to confirm our action in respect to all the reser- 

" The surveying of the town was done in the most careful manner, 
and with the utmost patience, and we believe that the lines are so well 
established that future litigation about 'lapping' of lots will be practi- 
cally impossible. In every third street running north and south and 
every fourth or fifth street running east and west, there were set, at 
the center of intersection with every other street, a stone monument, 
even with the surface, in the top of which a mark was fixed at the 
exact point of crossing the lines. The work occupied Messrs. Harvey 
and Smith, and a double party of assistants, constantly, until the 10th 


day of September, when having staked off every lot in town, except in 
a few blocks in the northwest part of the northwest quarter upon the 
'Saline land/ the work was completed. 

" In anticipation of the completion of the survey, and to insure 
parties purchasing lots in time to build upon them for winter, and an 
early provision of the means of commencing work upon the State 
House, the Commissioners, upon the 17th day of August, issued their 
advertisement for the first sale of lots, to be held on the 17th day of 

"This advertisement was authorized to be printed in such newspa- 
per as could give it the widest circulation. Upon the day of sale the 
weather, which had been excessively disagreeable for nearly a week, 
culminated in a cold, drizzly rain, in consequence of which not more 
than one hundred persons were present, and but few of these the bid- 
ders we had expected. The aspect of affairs was disheartening. Per- 
sons who had loudly boasted of their great expectations in buying lots 
and building houses; others who had been lavish in prophecies of the 
unparalleled success of the enterprise; others who had been free with 
advice to us in regard to appraisements and sales — these, and still 
others, who were certainly expected to be on the ground and foremost 
in purchasing, had given us the cold shoulder, and were not present 
or within hearing. Indeed, your Commissioners almost felt that fail- 
ure was after all to be the result. 

"However, the first lot was put up, and after some delay in getting 
a bidder, it was sold to J. G. Miller, Esq., for an advance of twenty- 
five cents on the appraisement of $40. 

"This small beginning was an index to the proceedings for the day,, 
and when the evening closed, the sales footing up to about one-tenth 
of our expectations, our spirits or our hopes were in nowise improved.. 

" The second and third days gave a better result, and on the fourth 
and fifth, sunshine having come again, bringing more persons to the 
sales, and getting every one to feeling well, the bidding became en- 
couraging, and the summing up of the five days' offering was nearly 
if not quite satisfactory. 

"The sales here at this time amounted to about $34,000. 

"The offering of lots was continued at Nebraska City from the 
23d to the 27th of September, inclusive, and in Omaha on the 30th of 
September to the 4th of October. 


"The sales at Nebraska City and Omaha amounted to about nine- 
teen thousand dollars, and aggregated, with the amount at Lincoln, 
about $53,000, a sum sufficiently large to dispel all despondency and 
warrant renewed exertions. 

"We again met an obstacle which for a little while promised a good 
deal of trouble. 

"Under the 'Capitol Bill/ your Commissioners were required to 
pay over the amount received from the sales of lots to the State Treas- 
urer, and pay all expenditures by warrants upon the State Treasurer 
building fund held by that officer. We have, in this regard, to plead 
guilty to a technical violation of law. Except the sum of $148, none 
of the money received by us has ever been paid over. 

"As soon as the town was surveyed, there began rumors that the 
enemies of the enterprise were determined to defeat it if possible, and 
that nothing which could accomplish that end would be left undone. 

"We were assured in the most reliable quarters that one of these 
defeating means would be the enjoining of the Treasurer against the 
payment of money upon warrants upon the building fund, an effort 
which, even if the injunction had not in the end been sustained, in the 
ordinary course of the courts would have prevented active operations 
until it should be too late to secure the erection of the State House. 

" In consequence of this rumor, well founded as it seemed to be, 
hundreds of persons who would otherwise have invested largely in 
Lincoln lots, declined so doing; others who had purchased or bid off 
lots, hesitated about paying the money and taking their certificates ; 
while others became so fearful of a bad result, that they even applied 
to the Commissioners for a restoration of the amounts paid and a can- 
cellation of their certificates. 

"At this juncture some friends of the enterprise, who were sureties 
upon our official bond, called upon the others, and prepared and fur- 
nished us with the following protest : 


" Nebraska City, November 23, 1867. 
"To the Honorable David Butler, Thomas P. Kennard, and John Gillespie, Commis- 
"Gentlemen — The undersigned having become sureties on your official bonds 
for the faithful performance of your duties as Commissioners, respectfully beg leave 
to formally protest against the deposit of any of the funds received by you from the- 
sale of State property with the State Treasurer, for the following reasons: 


" 1st. Because it has been repeatedly intimated by the enemies of the present 
-capital location, that all moneys so deposited will be attached and held, so as to 
defeat the wishes of a majority of the people of the State by preventing the erec- 
tion of the captol buildings till after the sitting of the next Legislature. 

" 2d. Because we, having in good faith become sureties, not as a personal favor to 
the Commissioners, but to secure the success of the proposed location and early 
completion of the capitol buildings, are unwilling that the enterprise should either 
be defeated or delayed by useless litigation. We therefore, respectfully but ear- 
nestly request the Commissioners to withhold the funds which may now be in 
their hands, as well as those which may yet be received, and deposit them with 
those bankers who have made themselves sureties, and who may furnish the Com- 
missioners satisfactory security for the prompt payment of the money deposited 
with them. Very respectfully, your obedient servants, 

"D. J. McCann. Thomas B. Stevenson. 

"Frederick Renner. D. Whitenger. 

"George Mohrenstecher. S. McConiga. 

"Samuel B. Sibley. Eobert Hawk. 

"H. Kennedy. James Sweet." 

"John Hamlin. 

"Under the circumstances which surrounded us, and being unwill- 
ing to jeopardize the money held by us as the representatives of the 
State in trust for the persons who had advanced it upon the risk of 
the success of the town of Lincoln, we felt that we could not do other- 
wise than accede to the demand and protest of our sureties, and having 
made satisfactory arrangements for the deposit and withdrawal of the 
funds with private bankers, we did so, and have assumed all the re- 
sponsibility of the financial affairs of the enterprise. 

"On June 17, 1868, we held a sale of lots at Lincoln, and realized 
about $9,000. 

"On the 17th of September we again sold at Lincoln, and received 
about $13,580. 

"At the sale in September, 1867, and June, 1868, we had offered 
lots only in the alternate or even numbered blocks, with those in four 
odd numbered blocks to make up for half of the reserved blocks, all of 
which, except the court house square, fell upon odd numbers. At the 
last sale, in September, 1868, we offered the lots in the odd numbered 
blocks on the old town site of Lancaster. The presumption of the 
authority to make this sale was upon the consideration of our oc- 
cupancy of the ground. We accepted it from the proprietors as so 
much over the town of Lincoln proper, and excess beyond the sec- 
tion and a quarter which we had located as the capital, as an addition 


to the town, for the purpose of having no rival in the business of 
selling town lots upon ground adjacent to the capitol, and where hav- 
ing a village already established, the proprietors could easily have de- 
rived large profits, which otherwise would have been invested with 
the State. Besides, the building of the town had so far been accom- 
plished in the direction of and upon that quarter that the appreciated 
value of property in second hands made it so probable that we could 
realize more money from a few lots there than from many upon the 
south side of the townsite proper; and standing in need of much 
more money than we had reason to believe these last-named lots 
would bring, we deemed it advisable to offer all that were then un- 

" The lots were appraised prior to the first sale, according to the 
law, due consideration being had to their relative situation regarding 
the public reservation, and the probable business center, and their 
particular condition. 

"This appraisement amounted to a total of. $68,000 00- 

"The appraisement on the lots sold was 63,475 00> 

"The advance on appraisement at all the sales was 13,145 75 

"Making the total sales at Lincoln, September, 1867 $34,342 25 

"At Nebraska City, September, 1867 18,745 50 

"At Omaha, September, 1867 1,005 00 

"At Lincoln, June, 1868 8,970 00 

"At Lincoln, September, 1868 13,553 00 

"Total $76,715 75. 

"Accompanying this report, appendix marked 'B' will contain a 
detailed statement of the purchasers of lots, of the lots purchased, and 
their prices. 

"Appendix 'E' gives the list of lots unsold, of those appraised 
and offered at the public sales. 

"On the 10th of September the Commissioners issued their notice- 
to architects, inviting for a period of thirty days plans and specifica- 
tions for a State House. 

"In response Messrs. Taggart & W. E. Craig, of Nebraska City, 
and John Morris, of Chicago, submitted the drawings and specifica- 
tions of designs. 

"Upon the 10th of October, after a careful consideration of their- 
merits severally we decided to accept that presented by Mr. Morris,, 


as being best adapted to the circumstances of construction and the 
wants of the State. 

"On the same day Mr. Morris, having been appointed superin- 
tendent of construction, issued a notice to builders, inviting proposals 
for a term of three months, for the erection of the work. 

"At the same time Mr. Morris was directed to commence such pre- 
liminary work, as excavation for foundations, delivery of material for 
foundation walls, and other arrangements as would facilitate the prog- 
ress of the work after the contract was let. 

" On the 10th of November the superintendent caused the ground 
to be broken, in the presence of a number of the citizens of Lancaster. 

" The removal of the first earth was awarded, in the absence of 
any state officer, to Master Frele Morton Donovan, the first child 
born in and the youngest child of the oldest settler of Lancaster 

"On the 11th of January the bid of Mr. Joseph Ward, proposing 
to furnish the material and labor and erect the building, for the sum 
of $49,000, was accepted, and from that time forward the work 
steadily progressed, with a few uncontrollable delays, to the comple- 
tion of the work contemplated in the contract. 

" For a report of the difficulties attending the work, and an esti- 
mate of the allowance proper to be made to the contractor for changes 
in material, increased amount of work, additional accommodation, 
and fittings, by Mr. Morris, the architect, is appended hereto, marked 
' C 

" The entire expenditures have been made by the Commissioners 
as in the following classification, for a detailed statement of which see 
Appendix ' D.' " 

The red sandstone, referred to in the foregoing report, and out of 
which the Commissioners expected to build the capitol, proved to be 
rotten and worthless, and the blue limestone of Beatrice was substi- 
tuted, at a necessary additional cost of several thousand dollars. 

As a suggestion of the prices received for lots at the sales in 
1867-8 and 1869, a few are given to represent the value of property 
at that time : 

Lot 3, in block 55, the block bounded by N and O and Tenth and 
Eleventh, sold for $64. Lots 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, and 18, in the 
same block, sold to James Sweet for $353, or an average of $58.88 


Lot 7, in the block containing the Burr Block, sold for $80 to J. E. 
LaMaster. N. C. Brock bought lot 12, same block, for $61. The 
Capital National Bank corner sold to Jacob Blum for $86. These 
were average prices. Few lots sold at less than $40, and few over 

The leading buyers were Samuel E. Allen, Jacob Blum, S. R. 
Brown, Hawks & Bush, W. A. Brown, N. C. Brock, J. H. Bryant, 
David Butler, S. W. Burnham, Isaac Cahu, M. M. Culver, A. J. 
Cropsey, D. R. Dungan, Jacob Dawson, Wm. Findley, L. A. Groff, 
C. H. Harvey, U. S. Harding, Bob Hawke & Co., W. S. Horn, 
Thos. H. Hyde, C. J. Hull, H. S. Jennings, H. W. Kuhns, Levi B. 
Kennard, T. P. Kennard, J. E. LaMaster, Wm. Morton, J. J. Mur- 
phy, J. W. Millard, Jason G. Miller, J. D. McCann, Pat. O'Hawes, 
H. D. Presson, A. L. Palmer, Philetus Peck, George Ross, Amos 
Reid, J. M. Riddill, John Roberts, S. A. Strickland, James Sweet, 
John M. Taggart, Geo. P. Tucker, and Henry Witte. We notice 
such names among the buyers as John M. Thayer, who bought lot 1, 
in block 1 3, for $1 1 5 ; T. W. Tipton, John Taffe, and W. R. Vaughan. 
Five ladies bought lots, namely, Mrs. D. Babcock, Miss S. H. Chap- 
man, Mrs. J. A. Harvey, Miss A. Peck, and Miss M. Wilson. The 
latter bought lot 5, in block 226, for $15. The ladies all looked out 
for bargains, or the men refused to bid against them. James Sweet 
was by all odds the heaviest buyer, his individual purchases amounting 
to $4,074, and as trustee, to $15,000. 



The City of Lincoln — The Eably Beginning — From Pre-Historic- 
Times to 1867 — The Towns of Lancaster and Yankee Hill — The^ 
County Seat Contest — The Building- of the Lancaster Seminary 
— Early Buildings and Beminiscences. 

In 1860, Government Square, Lincoln, was a rounded elevation. 
About the center of the square was a knoll about twelve feet higher 
than the present surface at the artesian well. Standing in summer on 
this graceful tumulus, as lovely a scene was spread out before the 
observer's eyes as ever was beheld in prairie landscape. To the west 
his hill of observation sloped evenly away to the valley of Salt creek. 
In the valley to the west of the creek, and north of O street, there 
was a beautiful grove of honey locust trees. South of O street there 
waved a little forest of stately elms and cottonwood, interspersed with 
a few honey-locust and hackberry trees. Besides, the stream in that 
direction was fringed with plum and other small trees and brush. 
Back from the trees the low ground between the hills was one sea of 
tall grass and yellow sunflowers. To the northwest could be traced 
the valley of Oak creek, also fringed with trees, and to the southwest 
the valley of Haines's creek, radiant with flowers. On the low ground 
directly westward the saline crust of the Salt Basin glistened in the sun 
like the surface of a lake, and far to the west the valley of Middle 
creek receded in a vista of green leaves, waving grass, and flowers. 
The valley of Salt creek could be traced for miles to the northeast, and 
the banks of the Antelope also had their fringe of grass, flowers, and 
trees, to the eastward. When the observer looked to the southward he- 
saw his hill decline into a drain, almost deserving the name of a small 
ravine, in the vicinity of 1ST street. This ravine originated in a basin 
of low ground in the locality a little distance to the northeast from 
the present site of the Burr block, and its course was southwesterly to 
Twelfth and O streets. Here it bent southward for a short distance 
and at the place where the alley south of Funke's opera house now is,. 


it again turned westward. Its course then was southwesterly to a line 
now occupied by the Latta block, on Eleventh street. Here it was 
deepest and the descent into it pretty abrupt from either side. It 
crossed Tenth street at N, and was soon lost in the flat surface of the 
bottom land to the westward. In the vicinity of the Capital National 
Bank, at O and Eleventh, there was a depression, where water stood to 
a considerable depth when the street came to be graded across N street. 
More than one old settler can now tell how he or some other man had 
a vehicle swamped in the mud on Eleventh street in attempting to cross 
this drain in early days, the reputation of the slough in the vicinity 
of Eleventh street being particularly notorious. 

Owing to this ravine, the elevation on which the capitol now stands 
looked higher, and the incline of its long, sweeping, northern slope 
more sharp, than at present. In all directions from the observer the 
distance faded away in a rim of hills, with gracefully undulating sides. 
In fact, it seemed that he stood on a conical elevation in a grand natural 
amphitheater, where surrounding heights were located at magnificent 
distances. The high ground on which the observer is supposed to 
stand, was covered with buffalo grass, as were all the high prairies 
twenty-nine years ago. Across the elevated surface sparse lines of 
blue joint marked the course of travel by ox teams from 1847 to- 
1860. The cattle of the west-bound trains had eaten the seed to the 
eastward and spread if along the trails in their journey toward the 
west. Indian ponies and buffaloes probably contributed to sow the 
seed also. 

A few buffaloes could at times be seen, about this date, on the pres- 
ent city plat. The common deer and black-tailed deer were fre- 
quently seen on the site of the coming capital. Also the white-tailed 
and mule deer were occasionally observed. Herds of pronghorn an- 
telope were often seen on the ground where Lincoln stands, in 1860 r 
and during several years later. Elk had formerly been abundant.. 
Prairie wolves, or coyotes, were numerous within the present city 
limits in 1860 and for years afterward. Pelicans, wild geese, ducks r 
prairie chickens, and quail, were seen in large numbers. Many small 
animals and birds made this region their home. Perhaps one thou- 
sand species and varieties of plant life could have been seen within 
the present platted limits of the city, twenty-nine years ago. This- 
seems extravagant, but when it is known that the flora of Nebraska 


comprises nearly 2,500 species and varieties of plants, it will not 
seem improbable. 

With the landscape more beautiful than an ideal picture, the soil 
manifestly of unbounded fertility, and the land swarming with ani- 
mal life, it can not be wondered that the early pilgrim who stood 
on the mound on jiost-office square and absorbed the prospect, thought 
that he had seen no spot so promising as this on which to found a city. 

The land on which Lincoln now stands was surveyed in 1856 by 
the Government. The salt springs in the Salt Basin were then dis- 
covered and reported by the Government surveyor. Fabulous antici- 
pations at once filled the minds of adventurers and enterprising men 
who then had begun to congregate along the Missouri river. In 
1856 the Crescent Company was organized at Plattsmouth, and Cap- 
tain W. T. Donovan, who commanded the steamer "Emma," from 
Pittsburg to Plattsmouth, was selected to represent the company at 
the Salt Basin. The captain and his family came on and settled on 
section twenty-three, on the west bank of Salt creek, and south of the 
mouth of Oak creek. The Crescent Company proposed to find out the 
value of the salt water flowage as a commercial investment. During 
the same summer William Norman and Alexander Robinson, repre- 
senting a company similar to that of Donovan, came on and located 
for a time near the big Salt Basin, on section twenty-one. They soon 
became satisfied with their profits, and left the basin permanently. 
Owing to the threatening aspect of the Pawnee Indians during the 
latter part of 1858, Captain Donovan also abandoned the schemes of 
the Crescent Company, and removed to the Stevens creek settlement, 
where he remained until 1861, when he returned to the vicinity of 
the Salt Basin once more and located at Yankee Hill, a point nearly 
identical with the site of the present Insane Hospital. 

In the autumn of 1859 a scheme for county organization was set 
on foot. At that time a large elm tree, with spreading branches, stood 
not far from what is now the Burlington Road round house. Under 
this tree the settlers met to take preliminary steps for the erection of 
county machinery. This caucus selected A. J. Wallingford, Joseph 
J. Forest, and Captain W. T. Donovan, as a committee to select a site 
for a county seat and lay out a town. That committee, with most com- 
mendable judgment, selected the present site of Lincoln, and called it 
" Lancaster," being named by Captain Donovan, probably, after Lan- 


caster county, Pennsylvania. He named his first settlement at the 
Salt Basin, in 1857, "Lancaster." But the new town went without 
inhabitants for several years, and settlers came into the county very 
slowly until about 1864. 

On July 2, 1861, Captain Donovan brought W. W. Cox, now of 
Seward county, to the Salt Basin, and on August 20th Cox and Dar- 
win Peckham began- to boil salt at the Big Basin, in section 21. They 
immediatly set up an extensive business by trading salt for all man- 
ner of useful commodities in the line of provisions, such as meat, 
flour, butter, potatoes, eggs, fruit, wood, clothing, etc. Salt was very 
scarce in the West, and during the war very high, so that people came 
even from near Des Moines, Iowa, for salt, and traded flour for the 
same, pound for pound. Settlers came from far and near to boil salt 
for themselves, and the Salt Basin was a lively place during the later 
months of 1861. No salt could be made in the winter time, and Mr. 
Cox wintered with Captain Donovan, at Yankee Hill. During the 
fall of 1861 such prominent men of the future as J. Sterling Morton, 
O. P. Mason, and Phineas W. Hitchcock, visited and inspected the 
Salt Basin. Mr. Morton then probably contracted some ideas that 
were unfortunate for him in after years. The Territorial Governor, 
Alvin Saunders, who had been elected in May, 1861, also visited 
the basin during the fall. 

During the winter of 1861-2 the coyotes practically had the eleva- 
tions where the city now stands all to themselves. 

The season of 1862 passed much as that of 1861. Cox and others 
made salt at the basin. 

John S. Gregory arrived during this year, and boiled salt by the 
Basin ou section 21. Many others came and went, and the salt busi- 
ness was very prosperous. During the final week of May, Milton 
Langdon and family arrived, and settled on the north side of Oak 
creek, not far west of its junction with Salt creek. A county con- 
vention was held at the basin on the first of May, and it was attended 
by about every old settler in the county. An election was held in 
the fall, but there was nothing connected with it of particular interest 
in the history of Lincoln. 

But there was one thing which did affect the destiny of Nebraska 
and this city which occurred in that year, and that was the final 
passage by both Houses of Congress of the Homestead Act. This 


had passed the Senate in February, and was passed by the House in- 
May. This act' brought settlers to Lancaster county with some- 
activity during 1863. 

During the winter of 1862-3, an old man named Van Benthusen 
was camped at the Salt Basin boiling some salt in a large open pan. 
An Indian hit him a rap over the knuckles with a ramrod, for a joke. 
The old man did not see the joke the same way, and flew into a rage 
and knocked the Indian over into the boiling salt, burning him 
fatally. The settlers went to the Indian camp in alarm, fearing this 
act had incensed the aborigines, but they wece found making sport 
of the scalded Indian, who roared with pain in his dying agony. 
They called him a squaw, and pointed their fingers at him in scorn. 

On August 20, 1862, a heavy frost killed the corn on low ground 
in Nebraska generally. 

During the winter of 1862-3 a son was born to the family of 
Joseph Chambers, then camped at the Salt Basin. The child lived 
but a short time, but was, probably, the first child born within the 
limits of the present city. On March 3, 1863, Elmer E. Cox, now 
of Seward, was born at the basin. 

The summer of 1863 found W. W. Cox and family still at the 
basin. During the spring of 1863 John S. Gregory built a frame 
house where West Lincoln now is, and made other improvements,, 
and the same season he was made the first postmaster of this locality. 
The office was named " Gregory's Basin," but did not continue very 
long. Mr. Gregory received a salary of $3 per annum. During 
the summer of 1863 Mr. Gregory erected salt-making apparatus at 
the basin having a capacity of about two tons per day, for which he 
found a ready sale to pioneers and travelers in all directions, except, 
perhaps, to the westward. Few white men had then settled west of 
Salt creek. William Imlay also conducted a salt-manufacturing 
business in 1862-3, at the small basin near where the stock-yards are 
now located. Milton Langdon and others were engaged in making 
salt during 1862 to 1864. 

John S. Gregory was elected to the Territorial Legislature for Lan- 
caster county on October 13, 1863, and became a prominent figure in 
the county and city thenceforward for many years. Fifty-five votes 
were cast at this election. Mr. Gregory was probably the first per- 
manent settler within the present city limits. 


On the morning of July 4, 1863, Mrs. W. W. Cox proposed that 
the family celebrate Independence Day. Wild gooseberries were very 
plentiful along Salt creek, and Mr. Cox went out to pick a quantity 
to be used in the festivities. When he had filled his pail he heard 
some hallooing, and stepping out of the bushes to see what the dis- 
turbance was about, he saw a small group of men near by, and on 
closer inspection he found that it was the party of Elder J. M. 
Young, Rev. Peter Schamp, Dr. J. McKesson, E. W. Warnes, Luke 
Lavender, and Jacob Dawson. They were hunting for a good place 
in which to plant a colony. They at once joined in the celebration 
project. The neighbors were called in, dinner was served, the elder 
made a speech, and a small flag they had with them was raised ; and 
this first patriotic event of its kind on the soil of the present cap- 
ital, they do say, was a very soul-stirring occasion. Perhaps the flag 
then floated for the first time on the present site of Lincoln. The 
elder was looking for a place to locate a colony and establish a Meth- 
odist mission, and like most of the pioneer Methodist preachers, he was 
a very good judge of business possibilities as well as of yellow-legged 
chickens. After a careful inspection of all the surrounding region, he 
came back to the Salt Basin about July 10, 1863, and decided that the 
present site of Lincoln was the most desirable for his purpose of any 
spot he had seen. He dedicated a portion of section twenty-three to 
colonial purposes, and christened it "Lancaster." But no attempt 
was made to settle the town until 1864, when the village life of Lan- 
caster really began. 

The winter of 1863-4 was one of intense cold, and the pioneers of the 
valley of Salt creek were threatened with starvation as well as with the 
rigors of the winter. But when spring came, settlers began to come 
in with renewed energy, and homesteading began in earnest, for it 
then became probable that the Union would be saved. People began 
to think they would risk this region, whose soil had so long been 
viewed with suspicion, owing to its radical contrast in appearance with 
that of States further east, and the libels long taught by ill-informed 
geographers. Jacob Dawson and John Giles took homesteads next 
to Young's new site of Lancaster in 1863. Captain W. T. Donovan 
had already taken a homestead — the first in the county — on January 
2d, east of the Asylum. In 1864 Elder J. M. Young and his sons, 
Dr. J. McKesson, Luke Lavender, E. W. Warnes, and J. M. Riddle, 


made a permanent settlement on the town site of Lancaster. The 
southeast quarter and the east half of the southwest quarter, of section 
twenty-three, were platted by Jacob Dawson, and the plat is dated 
August 6, 1864. The streets were named North, Nebraska, Saline, 
Washington, Main, Lincoln, College, High, and Locust, from the 
north to the south side of the plat. From west to east they were num- 
bered from one to twelve. The plat contained sixty-four blocks, of 
eight lots each. The streets were to be sixty-six feet wide ; the alleys 
were to run east and west, and were twenty feet wide. The plat had 
a "Court-house" and a "Seminary" square. Three years later, when 
the capital commissioners replatted the town on a much broader scale, 
the original plat was practically discarded. Much of the prosperity of 
the early part of 1864 was lost by the scare caused by the Indian 
outbreak of that year, and most of the settlers left in September. Cap- 
tain Donovan, John S. Gregory, and E. W. Warnes, stuck to the 
vicinity of the Lancaster plat. The Indians committed several butch- 
eries west of the Big Blue, but did not molest the Salt creek settle- 
ment. Still, those who remained were in great fear at times lest they 
might be attacked. 

The season of 1865 opened with but a few more settlers than that 
of 1864, on account of the Indian scare of 1864. Most of those who 
fled the fall before, returned in the spring of 1865, and others came 
and took homesteads. 

Lancaster county had but one county-seat fight, which, owing to the 
few persons engaged, did not develop the exciting or sanguinary as- 
pects that often grow out of such contests. When John Cadrnan and 
John S. Gregory were in the Territorial Legislature in the winter of 
1864, Cadman was in a scheme to partition Clay county between Gage 
and Lancaster. Gregory at first opposed this hotly, but he finally 
came around and supported the scheme. The agreement to dismem- 
ber Clay county was easy, comparatively. But when it came to the 
details of how it should be done, the problem was too much for Cad- 
man and Gregory. It was an original case, this taking the life of a 
municipal government, and it required skill in law and the principles 
of civil and constitutional government not thought of when the scheme 
was hatched. At this point in the dilemma Cadman and Gregory called 
in T. M. Marquett, representing this county in the Council, and he 
was made a sort of referee, after much higgling, for the adjustment of 


the whole matter of division of territory, funds, and extinguishment 
of the life of Clay county. His work was so well done that it has- 
never been questioned since. 

This elimination of Clay county from the map was intended to fix 
the county seat of Gage county at Beatrice, and also that of Lancaster 
near where it now is. "With Clay county in existence, the first would 
have had to go further south and the second further north. Cadman 
wanted the capital of Lancaster county at a point near the present In- 
sane Asylum, which he at once staked off as a town site under the 
name of "Yankee Hill." Elder J. M. Young caused his site to be 
platted the same summer of 1864, and then thse two generals set out 
to capture the county seat of Lancaster county. Gregory had caused 
the Legislature to appropriate $500 for a bridge over Salt creek " to 
be located in Lancaster county," hoping to get the bridge opposite 
Lancaster. But Cadman was not asleep, and when the commissioners 
came to view the ground he plead so well for a bridge at Yankee 
Hill that the money was equally divided between the Yankee Hill 
and Lancaster bridge sites. With the addition of subscriptions, both 
sites secured a bridge over Salt creek, and were so far even in the 
fight. Lancaster had the Salt Basin and Yankee Hill had the freight 
road from the Missouri, making them about a tie. Yankee Hill se- 
cured a blacksmith shop and a small store, and was a little ahead on 
the count. But Elder Young was a shrewd and energetic leader, 
and Cadman was unfortunate in at least one particular. The settlers 
south on Salt creek had generally located near what they supposed 
would be the county seat of Clay county, and the prospective capital 
they had named Olathe. "When Cadman joined hands with H. "W. 
Parker, of Beatrice, and slaughtered Clay county in cold blood, he also 
annihilated the prospects of Olathe. The visions of the Olatheans sud- 
denly went glimmering. Their anger against Cadman rose to a high 
pitch, and they "laid for him." And it is not recorded that Elder 
Young tried to smooth down the ruffled temper of the people of Olathe. 
So, when the people came to vote on the location of the county seat in 
the summer of 1864, Lancaster was victorious by odds. Olathe got 
even with Cadman. But Cadman did not long sulk in his tent. He 
joined with the people of Lancaster to make it a successful town, and 
was soon afterward a hotel keeper in Lancaster, and the justice of the 
peace of the place. He was elected to the next Territorial Legisla- 
ture, and was a member of the first State Senate. He was also probate 


judge, sheriff, and treasurer of Lancaster county. At present he is re- 
siding in California, but he paid Lincoln a visit during July of the 
present year.' He has a son residing in the city now, and another in 

Elder J. M. Young was a man of great enterprise, very large mind, 
and possessed of a warm heart. He was an antagonist whom most 
men could well afford to respect. He not only planted his colony on 
the sight of Lincoln, but was the inspiration which had much to do 
with inducing the commissioners to locate the State capital on his site 
rather than at Seward, or one of the other competitive points. He 
came to Lancaster county to found a female seminary when this region 
was almost literally a howling wilderness. Coyotes did the howling. 
So did the Pawnee and Otoe Indians. But he set about building his 
seminary, (in 1864, probably,) and had it in operation in 1866. It was 
built of the soft red sandstone of this region, and was about 30x50 ft. 
in dimensions, and two stories high. It stood on the rear part of the 
lot now occupied by the State Journal building, owing to the fact that 
the plat of Lancaster was totally disregarded by the surveyors who sur- 
veyed Lincoln, in 1867. It then became the school house, meeting 
house and public rallying point generally, until burned down in the 
spring of 1867. The first school on the site of Lancaster was taught 
in the " seminary " by Mr. H. W. Merrill, in 1866, in the latter part of 
that season, with an attendance of about thirty. School was continued 
in the "stone house" in 1866, when it was in charge of Mrs. Mer- 
rill, whose husband had a homestead on the Antelope. After it was 
burned, in 1867, John Cadman opened a hotel on its site, late in 1867, 
using the walls, in part, for his hostelry. This was the second hotel in 
Lincoln. Cadman afterward sold out to N. S. Atwood, who greatly en- 
larged the Cadman House, as a brick structure, and after running it for 
some time, it burned also. Before the Cadman House was built, the 
Pioneer House was erected on the southeast corner of Ninth and Q, 
streets. It was the first hotel in Lincoln, and was well managed by 
L. A. Scoggin, who afterward mysteriously left, and has not since 
been heard from. The Pioneer was built in 1867, and was burned a 
few years later. 

When T. M. Mai-quett ran for Congress in 1866, with J. Sterling 
Morton as opponent, Morton challenged Marquett to a campaign joint 
debate. The campaign was opened by the first debate, in the "sem- 
inary" just referred to, in August. The pioneers came from far and 


near, but this mass meeting numbered only about fifty persons. The 
meeting was a lively one, and the campaign resulted in the election of 
Marquett. So much for the history of the Stone Seminary. 

The first term of the Territorial court in Lancaster county was held 
in November, 1864, at the house of Jacob Dawson. Dawson's house 
was a double log cabin, situated on the ground on west O street now 
-occupied by the St. Charles hotel, between Seventh and Eighth, on the 
south side of the street. The officiating judge was Elmer S. Dundy, 
now United States District Judge for this district. Mr. Dawson 
acted as clerk, and Judge Pottenger, of Plattsmouth, was appointed 
Prosecuting Attorney for the Territory, at a salary of $75. T. M. 
Marquett, of Plattsmouth, was present as an attorney. Milton Lang- 
don and John S. Gregory were the local attorneys, who were nearly 
always arrayed against each other in the local courts. The leading 
case of the term was that of Bird, or The Territory, against Pember- 
ton. The latter had shot his revolver into Bird's house, and thumped 
Bird with it afterward, owing to some difficulty Pemberton had had 
with one of Bird's daughters. The Birds had talked, and Pemberton 
"did up" the father in consequence. After a good deal of trouble, a 
grand jury was impaneled, the venires for both grand and petit ju- 
ries being exhausted in getting the panel. Then it took about three 
days to find a petit jury, owing to the lack of men. The eligible male 
inhabitants were nearly all on the grand jury. There were no pro- 
fessional jurymen in court on this occasion. The trial of cases was 
delayed about three days in the endeavor to find petit jurors. 

The grand jury found several indictments. Pemberton was in- 
dicted and came to trial on a charge of " Malicious assault with intent 
to kill." T. M. Marquett defended him for a fee often dollars. He 
urged upon his honor, Judge Dundy, that his client should not be re- 
quired to lie in jail, (there was no jail until 1868,) and should not be 
required to give bond, even if he could, if the Territory was unable 
to try him. It was not his client's fault that a jury could not be 
found. Citizens should not be made responsible for the failures of 
the Territory. He therefore moved to quash the indictment. Judge 
Dundy granted the motion, and Pemberton was discharged. Pem- 
berton left, to avoid further trouble, Marquett assuring him that if 
he assaulted Bird again, that he would come to Lancaster and prose- 
cute him. Another indictment was quashed in the same way. 

This term adjourned on the day Abraham Lincoln was elected for 


a second term, November 8, 1864. There was a foot of snow on the 
ground, and the day was stormy. In returning to Plattsmouth, the- 
court and attorneys were obliged to shovel through drifts. When 
within eight miles of Plattsmouth, the party learned of the election 
of Mr. Lincoln, and all five of them then and there„.gave three cheers. 
The drive to Plattsmouth was made in a single day. This long drive 
was frequently made in a day. Simeon Benadom made the drive in 
a clay in 1868, when he brought his wife to the city. She was one of 
the first women who became a resident of Lincoln. 

There was one term of court in Lancaster in 1865, and probably one 
court in 1866. The famous litigation of those early years was be- 
tween John S. Gregory and his Uncle Eaton, of Plattsmouth. The 
war continued for several years, and was red hot. On one occasion 
Mr. Gregory expressed a decided opinion that Eaton would be a resi- 
dent of Sheol in the future. Eaton promptly replied that he should, 
in such a case, be compelled to regret his misfortune, owing to the neces- 
sity he should be under of keeping such company as Mr. Gregory. 

The next term of court in this county was held under the Govern- 
ment of the State of Nebraska. 

On June 21st, 1866, an election was held to ratify the State consti- 
tution framed by the Territorial Leigslature early in the year. The 
people ratified the instrument all right, and the Legislature elected 
under that constitution met July 4, 1866. But the bill for the ad- 
mission of Nebraska as a State, which passed Congress on July 28th, 
was vetoed by Andrew Johnson. This compelled the people to wait 
until 1867 for statehood. Congress passed another admission bill in 
January, 1867, which was also promptly vetoed by President John- 
son, on the grounds that the Territory did not contain sufficient popu- 
lation to warrant it in claiming statehood ; that the admission bill was 
at variance to some degree with the enabling act, and that the consti- 
tution had not been formed in the prescribed manner. It took Con- 
gress just two days to pass this bill over Johnson's veto: February 
8 and 9, 1867. The Legislature met at Omaha, February 20th and 
ratified the provisions on which Nebraska was to be admitted : that 
she should enter into an obligation to deny no citizen the elective fran- 
chise on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. 
President Johnson proclaimed Nebraska a State on March 1, 1867. 
The Legislature immediately took steps to remove the capital from 
Omaha. How this was done is told in another chapter. 




The Growth of the Village — The Change op Name — The Effect of 
the Location of the Capital — Eaely Business Houses and Resi- 
dences — The Days of '67 and '68. 

In 1864 Hon. John Gillespie returned from the army, in company 
with a son of Elder J. M. Young, on a furlough. When the steamer 
reached Nebraska City Elder Young was on the wharf watching for 
his son, whom he greeted cordially. He then gave Mr. Gillespie a 
neighborly reception, and the latter inquired whether the Elder was 
still living in Nebraska City. Mr. Young replied that he had located 
at Lancaster, in Lancaster county. Mr. Gillespie had a high opinion 
of Elder Young's ability and character, and expressed surprise that 
he should be incarcerated in the wilderness on Salt creek, and asked 
what he expected to do there. 

" Oh, I am founding a colony out there," said the Elder, " and am 
building a female seminary. We will soon have the county seat, and 
will have the capital there some day." 

The idea of founding a female seminary on the raw prairie, where 
there was scarcely a young woman to attend it, and of getting the 
Territorial capital out in the same nondescript region, struck Mr. 
Gillespie as visionary, if not actually absurd. But no fiction is so- 
romantic and surprising as real human experience, especially in a new 
State, where almost anything within reason is possible. 

Within about a year from the time that boat touched the Nebraska 
City wharf, John Gillespie was elected Auditor of the Territory of 
Nebraska. As Auditor he acted as one of three Commissioners, three 
years after the boat landed, to locate the capital of the State of Ne- 
braska on Elder Young's colonial grounds, and in almost precisely 
three years from the time the Elder made the prophecy, the capital of 
Nebraska actually was in existence on the ground he had picked out 
for the site of "Lancaster" in 1863. His "seminary" was not very 
successful, but that was not very material, for in about five years from, 
the date of his declaration to Mr. Gillespie that he proposed to found 


a seminary, the contract for the erection of the building for the Uni- 
versity of Nebraska was let, and Elder Young lived to see all his 
dreams more than realized. His death occurred in 1884. Lincoln 
then was a city of about 20,000 people. 

On the afternoon of July 29, 1867, the Commissioners finally met, 
at the house of Captain W. T. Donovan, to ballot on the location of 
the capital of Nebraska. The meeting was in the attic of the house. 
Lancaster had two votes on the first ballot and Ashland one. The 
one vote was by Mr. Gillespie, who said he feared that Lancaster was 
short on a water supply for a city of large population. But he was 
also influenced, doubtless, to vote for Ashland because that place was 
the favorite for a capital site of the Plattsmouth people, while Yankee 
Hill was the chosen site of the Nebraska City schemers. Platts- 
mouth was opposed to almost anything that Nebraska City favored. 
Mr. Gillespie was really in favor of Lancaster, and on the second 
ballot voted for it and made the choice unanimous. The citizens of 
the hamlet were gathered about the house awaiting the result in hope- 
ful but anxious suspense. Presently Governor David Butler and 
Commissioners T. P. Kenuard and John Gillespie came out of the 
house, and the Governor, standing on the east side to avoid the heat 
of the sun, formally proclaimed the decision of the Commission in 
favor of Lancaster. Of course the few settlers present rejoiced ex- 

On that historic July day the hamlet of Lancaster did not contain 
more than six or seven buildings, "shacks," log-houses, stone build- 
ings, and all. The Commissioners then stood in front of Captain 
Donovan's house, which stood about sixty feet southwest of Opelt's 
Hotel, or near the southwest corner of Ninth and Q streets. This 
was a small stone and cottonwood frame house. Jacob Dawson's 
double log cabin of 1864 still stood on the south side of O street, be- 
tween Seventh and Eighth, where the St. Charles Hotel now is. In 
the front end of this house S. B. Pound had set up a small grocery 
store in 1866, and it was still in existence when the Capital Commis- 
sioners came. Dawson also had the postoffice at that time, and took 
it "up town" with him when he removed two blocks east, in 1867. 
Milton Langdon resided in a little log-house near the southwest cor- 
ner of Eighth and Q streets. Dr. and Rev. John McKesson, for he 
represented both the Methodist ministry and the medical profession, 


lived on his claim on the north side; his house was being erected at 
what is now W and Twelfth streets. The Cottonwood grove now 
there was planted by McKesson, the trees at first being switches. The 
doctor added McKesson 's Addition to Lincoln, and was offered §40,- 
000 for it in the early seventies, but declined to take it. He wanted 
more. He then went into the manufacture of a harvester he invented, 
and lost all his money, and now lives a poor man at La Cygne, Kan- 
sas. S. B. Galey, who came here in April, 1866, had a small stone 
building on P street near Tenth, on the site now occupied by John 
Sheedy's elegant block. Linderman & Hardenbergh, who next to S. 
B. Pound were the earliest merchants of Lincoln, had opened a small 
stock of goods at a point that would now be in Ninth street, near P, 
possibly partly in both streets. They had sold their shop to Martin 
and Jacob Pflug, early in 1867, who conducted it in the firm name of 
Pflug Bros. They kept a small stock of groceries, including a bar- 
rel of whisky, some hardware, and a few dry goods. Robert Mon- 
teith and his son John had a little shoe shop at what is now 922 P 
street. They soon after built the little frame building now on that 
lot and now used by M. Adler for a pawn shop. This is one of the 
few structures remaining of that date in the city, and when first built 
passed for quite a building. 

Elder J. M. Young lived in what is now O and Eighteenth street. 
The sandstone house now on that corner was afterward erected by the 
Elder. Luke Lavender's log homestead residence was at O and Four- 
teenth, his eighty acres lying to the south and east. This house has 
been considered the first residence erected on the plat of Lincoln. If 
this is true, it must have been placed there before the fall of 1864, 
for it is positively known that Jacob Dawson's double log-cabin, on 
the south side of O street, between Seventh and Eighth streets, was 
completed before the close of October, 1864, for Judge Dundy held a 
term of court in that house during the first few days of November, 
1864, and T. M. Marquett was in attendance as an attorney. Dawson's 
and Lavender's houses were, doubtless, built in the summer of 1864. 
Both men came to the county in company with Elder Young's explor- 
ing party, in July, 1863. William Guy, Philip Humerick, E. T. 
Hudson, E. Warnes, and John Giles, had homesteads near the plat of 
Lancaster, and the farms they then were opening are now all part of 
the city of Lincoln. The walls of Elder Young's old stone seminary 


stood on the rear part of the lots on the northeast corner of Ninth 
and P streets, where the State Journal block now stands. There may 
have been thirty inhabitants, all told, on the present site of Lincoln 
in July, 1867. Judging by the vote cast in the following fall election, 
there may have been five hundred people in the entire county. From 
thirty souls to fifty thousand inhabitants, in twenty-two years, is a 
record of rapid growth equaled by few cities of the world ; but such 
has been the progress of Lincoln since 1867. 

The Commissioners called the capital "Lincoln," according to the 
terms of the bill, which provided for the relocation of the seat of gov- 
ernment of the State of Nebraska. How the name "Lincoln" came 
to be selected is told in the chapter on the removal of the capital. 

When it became known that the Commissioners had selected Lin- 
coln for the State capital, a number of men squatted on the site, ex- 
pecting to bid in the ground they were on at the fall lot sales. But 
there was a good deal of doubt about the outcome of this capital ven- 
ture. The North Platte people were generally unfriendly to the 
choice of the Commissioners, and Omaha was disposed to prevent the 
consummation of the removal, if such a thing were possible. The lot 
sales were not opened until September 1 7th, and the lack of confidence 
was so great that the sale, on the first day, was a failure. No lots 
could be disposed of. And the year of 1867 was practically closed 
before the sales were known to be sufficiently successful to assure the 
funds necessary to erect a capitol building. Had it not been for the 
courage of the Commissioners and the enterprise of the Nebraska 
City men, who were friendly to this as a site for a new capital, it is 
very doubtful if this removal scheme, would have succeeded. Nebraska 
City considered it good strategy to get the capital out of Omaha, 
when it was thought that the latter town might be outstripped, and 
Nebraska City become the metropolis of the Missouri. It seems 
never to have occurred to the schemers, who were trying to protect 
themselves from Omaha, that the new capital would spring into such 
importance in twenty-two years as not only to overshadow Nebraska 
City, but even to rival Omaha herself. As Lincoln has passed all 
other towns on the river, she may yet pass Omaha. This is much 
more reasonable than a prediction of her present importance would 
have seemed in 1867. 

The real business existence, in fact the real existence of Lincoln, 



•dates from 1868. The lot sales had fairly succeeded. Confidence 
then had a substantial foundation ; so that business houses and inhab- 
itants came quite freely during 1868, and Lincoln became a town of 
about 500 people toward the close of the year. 

Even now the records and traditions of 1868 are becoming dim — 
especially the traditions. It has taken days of patient inquiry to re- 
produce the landmarks of that year even with approximate correct- 
ness. Old settlers differ radically about various points. Certain 
buildings are located by some at one place and others feel sure they 
were somewhere else. But the village was substantially all confined 
to a space bounded on the west and east by Eighth and Twelfth streets, 
and on the north and south by E, and N streets. 

Jacob Dawson had left his historic double log-cabin on the present 

- ;•* - jr-g^tfi* ':" „ - 


site of the St. Charles Hotel, near O and Eighth, and had erected a 
large square stone and log house back some distance from the south- 
west corner of O and Tenth. The Sweet Block, on the northeast cor- 
ner of O and Tenth, was finished early in 1868, by Darwin Peckham, 
who still is a leading mechanic of the city, and one of very few who 
did business on this plat in 1868. This building was just half its 
present size. Where the O street stairway now is there was an out- 
side stairway for entrance to the upper story. The building was 
really three buildings erected together, by James Sweet, A. C. Ru- 
dolph, and Pflug Bros. Sweet and N. C. Brock opened the first 
bank in the city, in the southwest corner room, on the first floor, in 
June, 3 868. This bank continued until 1871, when it was reorgan- 
ized as the State Bank of Nebraska, by Samuel G. Owen, James 

J 52 


Sweet, and Nelson C. Brock. About the same time that the bank 
opened, A. C. Rudolph opened a grocery store in the next room 
north, and Pflug Bros, a stock of dry g6ods in the third room from 
the corner. The upper part was used for offices, and later on, part 
of the county offices were there, and the State Treasury was practically 
at the bank in 1869, Mr. Sweet then being State Treasurer. Bain 
Bros, opened the first clothing house in the city in 1868, on the 
southeast corner of Tenth and O streets. They had previously had a 
real estate office fronting Tenth street, to the south of their clothing 
house. D. B. Cropsey had a real estate office on the southwest corner 
of O and Tenth, where the State National Bank now is, his father, A. 
J. Cropsey, being with him. During that year Bohanan Bros, opened 


"~v^' / ' W "' l, '"""' W '*' A ' r " , ""'"" Bl -"'--"«»'«"** 1 '-""" 

their meat market where it has been ever since, next to Cropsey's 
office, to the west, and where they have since done an enormous busi- 
ness. Squire Blazier also opened a meat market about where the 
postoffice now stands, postoffice block then being known as "Market 
Square." The square was used in those days for a camping ground 
for immigrants and land seekers, and was generally thronged with 
machinery, covered wagons, horses, cattle, and men. Here the early 
land agents found many of their customers. On south Tenth street, 
about where the Lancaster County Bank now stands, David May 
opened a small stock of elothing during the year. A little south of 
the alley R. R. Tingley opened a little drug shop ; and a short dis- 
tance south of this C. F. Damrow set up the first tailoring establish- 



ment in the capital. On the north side of this block, about the 
center, facing " Market Square," was Moll's grocery. S. B. Pound 
had removed his stock of groceries to what is now 915 O street,, 
where he united with Max Rich, of Rich & Oppenheimer, of Ne- 
braska City, in the grocery business during a few months of 1867 
and 1868. The next year he sold his interest to Rich & Oppen- 
heimer, who carried a general stock there for a number of years. 

Judge Pound, as a merchant, was noted for his close application to 
his law studies. He really made his grocery business a sort of sub- 
sidiary arrangement to fill up the time while he prepared for the bar. 


He is a good example of success won by tireless application and in- 

On the northwest corner of this block a colored man named Moore- 
had a barber shop, and near the southwest corner was the residence 
of L. A. Scoggin. 

In the block bounded by O and X and Eighth and Ninth, there 
was one building, Dunbar's livery stable, located on the northeast 
corner of the block. It was a long low shed. 

In the block bounded by O and P and Eighth and Ninth, there- 
were two or three buildings. On the southeast corner, where the- 
Humphrey Bros.' stately block now is, Dr. H. D. Gilbert, of Nebraska 



City, had established a mercantile house, carrying the peculiar combi- 
nation of books, drugs, and hardware. His little house stood beside 
the store to the north. Humphrey Brothers succeeded Dr. Gilbert 
soon afterward. Milton Langdon, the first County Treasurer of 
Lancaster county under the new order of things, lived a little back 
from the southwest corner of Eighth and Q. His milk house, which 
was a little to the southward, became the first city and county jail. 
"When a citizen became too "wild and woolly," they "put him in the 
milk house." It is a question in dispute whether J. D. Minshall 
had a small store of dry goods and groceries on P, between Eighth 




and Ninth, or not, in 1868. Simon Benadom says he is certain that 
he did. Charles F. Damrow thinks that he did, also. Others think 
he never was anywhere but on O street, between Tenth and Eleventh, 
south side. But he was doubtless there. 

In the block bounded by P and Q and Eighth and Ninth, there 
were two or three houses. H. S. Jennings had put up a stone resi- 
dence near the northeast corner. It is thought by several pioneers 
that there were two or three small houses on the south side, facing P, 
one of which was the Widow Gardner's dance house, which was a 
famous, or infamous, attraction during the legislative session of 1869. 
But these are not all fully authenticated. Near the northwest corner 


of Ninth and Q a story-and-a-half cottonwood frame stood. It was 
thirty-three feet square, and was partly used for public and partly for 
private purposes. 

In the block bounded by P and Q and Ninth and Tenth, there were 
six or more structures of various sorts and sizes. At the northwest 
corner was the Pioneer House, the original hotel in Lincoln, kept by 
L. A. Scoggin. John Cadman had overcome his disappointment at 
not getting the capital, and having bought the lots at the southwest 
corner of the block, on which the walls of the old stone seminary 
stood, he built up that structure late in 1867, and opened it as the 
" Cadman House." He only owned it a few months, until he sold 
it, in 1868, to Nathan Atwood, who built a brick front to it of much 
larger proportions, and opened the "Atwood House," which was the 
principal hotel of the town for several years, but was burned down 
in 1879. On the northeast corner was the Methodist church, a low 
white building, erected late in 1867 or earl)- in 1868. It was the 
largest audience room in town for several years, and was used for 
church services, political and business meetings, lectures, and similar 
public purposes. Its dimensions were about 25 x 40 feet. 

Seth B. Galey having been appointed County Clerk in April, 1867, 
and been elected to that office in the fall of 1867, erected a small stone 
office on P street, where John Sheedy's block now is, in which he 
transacted the county's business belonging to his department. Next 
to him on the west was a little building in which S. B. Pound and 
Seth Robinson opened a law office. At 922 P street was the Mon- 
teith shoe shop, heretofore mentioned. 

On the block bounded by Q. and R and Eleventh and Twelfth, a 
short distance north of the southwest corner, was the "stone school- 
house." This was the first school-house in Lincoln. The stone 
school-house was the educational center during several subsequent 

In the block included between O and P and Tenth and Eleventh 
streets the first saloon was started, by Ans. and George "Williams. 
This was the first building completed on the east side of the Govern- 
ment Square. It stood north of the center of the block, and the up- 
per floor was used for offices. The front room was Thomas H. Hyde's 
land office, where he transacted the leading land business of the town 
durino' 1868 and later. Mr. Hyde was an auctioneer at the State lot 


sales in 1868. His office was head-quarters for State officers and pol- 
iticians, Governor Butler often resorting there to transact business. 
In after years the lower room became a notorious saloon, where more 
prominent men of the town drank whisky to their detriment than at 
any other place in the city. It is said that from fifteen to twenty 
leading men of Lincoln have snuffed out their prospects at that bar. 
This old cottonwood frame still stands, at 1320 O street, and is used 
as a second-hand store. 

A good story is told on Colonel J. E. Philpott, who arrived in the 
capital about this time. When he looked around for a law office, he 
found empty the upper front room of the building in which the Wil- 
liams boys had their bar. He took possession, and awaited the process 
of events. After a few days a tall, dignified-looking man came into his 
office, and said he was looking for a room in which to transact a land 
business. Colonel Philpott thereupon proceeded to lease the stranger 
a part of his office, and everything went on swimmingly, until it was 
developed, later on, that the stranger was the owner of the building, 
or Mr. Thomas H. Hyde, and Colonel Philpott had leased Mr. Hyde 
quarters in his own building. Mr. Hyde had been away on a land- 
exploring tour, and finding Colonel Philpott in his house on return- 
ing, played "tenderfoot" to have a little fun. 

Dr. D. A. (Sherwood had a real estate office near the southeast corner 
of this block, and a small stock of groceries in the same building. 

Behind these shops, to the north and west, was located the first lum- 
ber yard in Lincoln. The proprietors of the yard were Monell & 
Larkley. Soon afterward Valentine Brothers opened a lumber yard 
on the ground fronting on Eleventh, from M to N streets, where 
TemjDle Block and the Billingsley Block now are. This firm supplied 
most of the lumber used in building the old State capitol. During 
1868 and 1869 both yards employed teams to bring the lumber from 
the Missouri river, at a point about six miles above Nebraska City. 
Farmers and freighters going to the river with loads would return 
loaded with lumber, and the lumber trains were often long caravans. 

A. J. Cropsey built a residence where the south end of the Capital 
hotel now is. Early in the fall of 1867 W. W. Carder had estab- 
lished the first newspaper of the town, near the middle of the east 
side of the block bounded by N and O and Tenth and Eleventh streets. 
This was the Gommonioeulth , which in the summer of 1868 became the 


State Journal. A little west of Carder's office was the beer saloon of 
Joe Hodges, who is said to have dished out the first lager sold in Lin- 
coln. Whisky had been sold for two years or more before this. 
Over on the southwest corner of this block William Shirley had erected 
a boarding house, and next to this building, on the north, was Cox's 
grocery and boarding house. About where Harley's drug store now 
is, at the southeast corner of Eleventh and O, stood William Rowe's 
harness shop, who was the pioneer horse furnisher of the town. About 
three lots east on O street was J. P. Lantz's land office. Mr. Lantz 
also conducted a real-estate monthly for about seven years, called the 
Nebraska Intelligencer. Of that he used to print an edition of 10,000 
copies at times, and it was the means of inducing many to come to 
Nebraska. Mr. Lantz is still in the real estate business, on nearly the 
same spot he occupied in 1868. A couple of lots to the eastward was 
William Guy's residence. On the southeast corner of Twelfth and O 
streets was Charles May's bakery, where D. B. Alexander's block is 
now located. May baked 150 loaves per day in 1868. He also had 
a homestead. William Allen had a residence nearly opposite, north, 
near where the Burr Block stands. Leighton & Brown had a small 
drug store on the southeast corner of O and Eleventh, on the present 
site of the Richards Block. Seth H. Robinson lived on the northwest 
corner of Twelfth and P streets, where Mr. R. E. Moore now resides. 
It is said that Thomas Roberts had the first harness shop in town, 
near the southwest corner of Eleventh and O; but this is in dispute. 

Such was Lincoln in 1868. There may have been a few small 
shops and residences in addition to those named, but those described 
substantially constituted the capital of Nebraska twenty-one years ago. 

The ordinary trades were fully represented at this time. The pro- 
fessions were also. S. B. Galey, Seth Robinson, S. B. Pound, Ezra 
Tullis, Major Strunk, and J. E. Philpott, were the lawyers of this 
period. The first man admitted to the bar in this county was John 
S. Gregory, who became a disciple of Blackstone under the authority 
of Judge Dundy in 1866. He and Milton Langdon had practiced in 
the little legal affairs of Lancaster settlement back in 1864 and 1865, 
but they did this because they were somewhat more " posted " than the 
other pioneers of the neighborhood. Robinson was a man of brill- 
iant mind, but not perfectly balanced. He became Attorney General 
of Nebraska in 1869. He died in California of quinsy a few years 


ago. S. B. Pound has since held the office of Probate Judge, [1871, J 
District Judge in 1875, and State Senator. He was a member of the 
Constitutional Convention of 1875, which framed our present State 
constitution. He formed a law partnership with L. C. Burr in 1887, 
having resigned the judgship at that time, owing to the low salary at- 
tached to it. Major Strunk was a resonant political orator of the 
early clays, and slipped from the community in an unceremonious halo 
of social indiscretion. Col. Philpott is in the addition to the Sweet 
Block, having officed in the original block when some of the county 
and State officers were doing business there. It was here, in 1869, 
that the colonel became the unwilling victim of one of his own prac- 
tical jokes. He was in partnership with Sam Tuttle, with an office 
at the east end of the block, on the upper floor. H. G. Brown, a good 
fellow, with a disposition to take things too seriously, was on the 
same floor, and was Deputy Clerk of both the District and Supreme 
courts. Philpott and Tuttle persuaded Brown to go down to the back 
yard at night to appropriate a little fire-wood for them from a pile 
belonging to the county. Brown obligingly went down for the wood, 
and Philpott slipped out and hid behind some sunflowers that grew 
further east in the yard. When Brown had filled his arms with wood, 
Philpott rose up suddenly and began to fire off his revolver, as if he 
had caught Brown stealing wood, expecting that the latter would drop 
the wood he had and run precipitately to cover. Then they would 
enjoy the joke on Brown at their leisure. This was the theory of the 
joke. But plans of jokers, like those of mice, do not always go the 
satisfactory way. No sooner had Philpott's gun flashed than Brown 
dropped his wood and wheeled toward Philpott's hiding place with 
the savage remark : 

"Ah ha ! you'll find that's a game that two can play at ! " 

And to Col. Philpott's dismay he began to reach for his hip pocket 
to get out his revolver. Col. Philpott saw that something must be 
done to ease the situation, and that in a hurry. So he sprang out into 
Brown's view and threw up his hands, gesticulating wildly while he 
protested with an intense earnestness he had not experienced for years : 

"Don't shoot, Brown, don't shoot ! It's me, Philpott — just a joke 
— that's all!" 

Brown was not cooled down at once, and growled that "he'd a no- 
tion to shoot Philpott anyway, just on account of his blamed foolish- 


ness." Then Brown went off indignantly, and refused to be friendly 
for some time. All this time Tuttle was looking out of the window 
having all the fun there was in the performance. 

In 1868 a drove of 1,000 Texas cattle passed through Lincoln 
northward bound. In going over the Salt creek bridge, at the foot 
of O street, the cattle broke the structure down, precipitating a lot of 
the long-horned bovines of Texas into the stream. The owner of the 
herd camped just across the creek, and the town trustees, Messrs. H. 
S. Jennings, S. B. Linderman, Dr. H. D. Gilbert, J. J. Van Dyke, 
and D. W. Tingley, donned their official dignity and proceeded toward 
the camp to require the proprietor of the herd to pay for the bridge. 
Major Bohanan and others of the population who were posted on the 
science of the Texas steer, followed at a prudent distance to see the 
fun. The trustees marched up to the steers in solemn state and art- 
less innocence. The animals raised up their heads in audacious amaze- 
ment, and began to move toward the officials of the city, who found 
it convenient to commence retracing their steps. This official retreat 
was at first conducted in good order, but the accelerated movement 
of the steers, and finally a charge from the animals, turned the retire- 
ment of the town officers into a precipitate rout, and they came pell 
mell back to cover with the steers in full pursuit. Having escaped, 
they then summoned the posse comitatus, and the owner of the steers 
was required to pay for the bridge; and their terms were not improved 
by the bad manners of his wild western cattle. 

The doctors were here with the earliest comers. Dr. J. M. Mc- 
Kesson has already been mentioned as one of Elder Young's party, 
of 1863. Besides him there were in 1868 and 1869 Doctors H. D. 
Gilbert, George W. French, and J. W. Strickland. "When the Lan- 
caster County Medical Society was organized, on the 24th of May, 
1869, the following-named resident physicians of the capital were 
present: D. W. Tingley, F. G. Fuller, J. M. Evans, H. D. Gilbert, 
L. H. Robbins, and George W. French. In the fall of the same 
year the following additional names were added to the roster : J. W» 
Strickland, John W. Northup, George A. Goodrich, and C. C. Rad- 

Politics in a new country never exhibits a character of tameness. 
Some one, probably Seth P. Galey, had organized the Republican 
party about 1866. Galey was a natural leader. He stood six feet 


in his stockings, and was as successful as he was large physically. 
He was county judge in 1867 and 1868. In 1870 he went to the 
Legislature, and in 1879 was chosen Mayor of Lincoln. He carried 
a hod to finish the stone seminary in 1866, and was attorney for the 
Atchison & Nebraska railroad in 1871 or 1872. He is now living 
in Portland, Oregon. There were many Union soldiers here in 1868; 
only three or four years out of the war. and they were ill tensely en- 
thusiastic for their old leader, General Grant, in the Grant and Col- 
fax campaign of 1868. So it was easy to stir up a hot discussion, 
especially with such candidates as Grant and Seymour, the latter's 
war record being decidedly unsatisfactory to the soldiers. 

Some time during September, 1868, Simon P. Benadom, who had 
been appointed a postmaster in Jones county, Iowa, in 1856, by Bu- 
chanan, and was a warm Democrat, called a county convention of the 
Democratic party of the county. This was rather regarded as a joke 
by the Republicans. When the day came there were just three Dem- 
ocrats, besides Benadom, present in the old stone school house, two 
of whom were Irish stone cutters from the State Capitol building. 
Benadom was chairman and secretary of the convention, and an or- 
ganization was effected. Benadom was selected for chairman of the 
county committee, and also of the senatorial committee, places he 
held for years afterward. It was decided to erect a Seymour and 
Blair "liberty pole" on Market Square, preparatory to holding a 
rousing Democratic rally there in October. A committee was selected 
to procure the pole, but on the appointed day not a man appeared 
but Benadom. He remembered the old story of the lark and the 
farmer, and immediately drove his lumber wagon to his woods, near 
-Saltillo. There he found Matt Brackin, now commissary to the city 
jail, whom he invited to aid in getting the pole. Brackin was then 
and is yet a Democrat, and readily consented. They loaded three 
stalwart hickory saplings, and drove to Lincoln. Benadom welded 
iron rings, and the three poles were spliced together, and made a 
flag staff probably fifty-five feet high. It took all the Democrats in 
the town to raise it to a perpendicular position. But they planted it, a 
little to the southeast of the place where the Government Square ar- 
tesian well now is. Benadom remembers this zealous work yet as a 
hot and difficult performance that almost sweat politics out of hiin 
for the time. 


About three weeks afterward the Democratic rally took place 
around that pole. A platform had been erected at its base, and upon 
it Judge Savage, of Omaha, stood while he made a short and fiery 
speech to the assembled Democrats. Then A. J. Poppleton addressed 
the crowd for two hours, and it seemed to the followers of Seymour 
present that they had never heard a more eloquent speech. It estab- 
lished Poppleton's reputation as an orator of power, from that day 
to this, among Lancaster Democrats, and also among many Repub- 
licans. General Victor Vifquain, now Consul of the United States 
at Aspinwall, Panama, was present also. 

This demonstration of the Democracy around the hickory pole, 
supposed to be symbolic of "Old Hickory," fired up the Republicans. 
They had to have a pole also, and to excel the Democrats. They 
sent to the river yards, (it was at that time told to the Democrats 
€ven to Chicago,) for several very fine pine timbers. The base tim- 
ber was perhaps a foot square, and was left square. The next sec- 
tion was smaller, and was made with eight sides. The next was of 
less dimensions, and with more faces. The pole finally tapered off in 
a graceful round staff not larger than a man's wrist. When com- 
pleted by Mr. Sam McClay, the leading Democrats admitted it to be 
the most graceful and lofty flag staff they had ever seen. It was so 
heavy and tall that the Democrats had to assist in planting it. It 
was so top heavy and flexible in the wind, that it had to be stayed 
by ropes. It penetrated the atmosphere to a height of one hundred 
feet. It cost the Republicans, it was reported at the time to the Dem- 
ocrats, three hundred dollars. This was perhaps a little higher than 
the facts. It was set up some distance north of the Democratic pole. 
The Republicans were very proud of the surpassing excellence of their 
pole, and probably took some pains to exult at the expense of the 
Democratic staff. 

At any rate, toward the close of the campaign it was found one 
morning to have been broken in three pieces, and two fragments, 
with the flag, were on the ground. This fired the blood of the Re- 
publicans, particularly of the old soldiers. They thought their staff 
bad been broken through political envy, or even malice. They sus- 
pected a stage driver named Pool with having committed this flagrant 
act, and a warrant was immediately procured of County Judge John 
(Cadman for Pool's arrest. Sheriff J. H. Hawke brought Pool back 


to the city at the close of the day, and he was immediately arraigned! 
before Judge Cadman in a little frame building, used for a saloon by 
Joe Hodges, on O street, between Tenth and Eleventh, where McCon- 
nell's brick block now stands. The room was packed with men, and 
the ground in front was occupied by an angry crowd of old soldiers 
and others, who freely declared they would hang Pool if found guilty; 
and very few who saw the menacing demonstrations doubted that they 
would carry out their threat. 

S. B. Pound and C. H. Gere conducted the prosecution, and J. 
E. Philpott, H. S. Jennings, and Col. Van Armin, the defense. The 
trial had hardly opened before the floor broke down, and dropped 
the court, attorneys, prisoners, and reporters, to the ground, about a 
foot below. But a small affair like this cut no figure when a man 
was on trial for his life on a vague suspicion of having cut clown a 
Grant and Colfax flag staff, and the trial went on. It soon devel- 
oped that there was no evidence against Pool, and he was discharged, 
and was hustled off into the dark, by the back way. While the 
Grand Army men did not wish to hang a man who really had not 
committed the offense, yet Pool found it convenient to keep out of 
sight for a good while after this. The pieces of the broken staff had 
been arranged for a gallows in front of the court room, the rope was 
adjusted, and the whole aspect of affairs looked so like some one was 
going to be executed, that no one could blame him for feeling as though 
it was not conducive to long life to remain in the capital of Nebraska.. 

At the election following this fiery proceeding there were 460 votes 
cast in the county, of which the Republicans polled 320, and the Dem- 
ocrats 123. 

This was not the only time that a man escaped by a hair's breadth 
from being taken from a Lincoln court and hung. In 1869 a man 
named Bill McClain was suspected of horse stealing. He was ar- 
raigned before Judge Cadman, and an angry crowd, led by Martin 
Pflug, the merchant, were actually uncoiling their rope; but the em- 
phatic protestations of Simon Benadom and the size of Judge Cad- 
man induced the mob to cool down and disperse. Judge Caclman was 
a very powerful man, and he told Benadom that he would have 
pitched out the leaders of the mob faster than they could come into 
the room where he was, had they attempted the assault. 

After much labor and inquiry, a diagram of the town, as it appeared 





9 n 




V □ 



015 91 














»iD DD 












D 028 

ID 2 5 







□ A.LPAUMtR'l 







50 515 2. 

R Street 





P Street 

O Street 

a □ 









Q, Street •— • 



N Street 








Simon Benadom's Cottonwood frame house. 

H. S. Jennings's residence. 

Capt. W. T. Donovan's residence. 

John Langdon's log residence. 

Langdon's milk house — first jail. 

Dr. II. D. Gilbert's residence. 
Gilbert's drug store and Humphrey Bros.' hard- 
ware store. 
Dunbar's livery stable. 

Jacob Dawson's old log house, built in 1S64. 

Jacob Dawson's new house, built in 1S67. 

Moore's barber shop — first in Lincoln. 

L. A. Scoggin's residence. 

Rich & Oppenheimer's store. 

Moll's Grocery. 

Bohanan Bros. — meat market. 

D. B. & A. J. Cropsey — land office. 





3 ( >- 

David May — clothing. 

R. R. Tingley — drug store. 

C. F. Damrow — tailor shop. 

Shirley's boarding house. 

Cox — grocery and boarding house. 

Bain's land office. 

Bain Bros. — clothing — first in Lincoln. 

Joe. Hodge's beer saloon — first beer sold. 

Tom Robert's harness shop — (in dispute.') 

Commonwealth office — by Carder. 

Squire Blazier's meat market. 

Sweet ik Brock's bank'. 

A. C. Rudolph — groceries. 

Pflug Bros.' store. 

Walsh & Putnam— land office. 

Williams Bros.' saloon. 

I). A. Sherwood — grocery store. 

I'. A. Sherwood — real estate. 






5 1 - 


Monell & l.ashley — first lumber yard. 
A. J, Crop<ey's residence. 
Dr. Scott's drug store. 
Monleith's shoe shop. 
Cadman House — old stone seminary. 
Pound & Robinson's law office. 
S. B. Galey — county clerk. 
Methodist Church— built in 1867-8. 
Pioneer House — first hotel in Lincoln, 
(lid stone school house — built in 1S07. 
Seth Robinson's house. 
Leighton & Brown's drug store. 
Wm. Rowel's harness shop. 
J. P. Lantz — land office. 

William Guy's residence — first house in new- 
Valentine Bros.' lumber yard. 
('. May — bakery. 
Luke Lavender's house — built in 1S64. 


in 1868, has been prepared for this book. It shows where each house 
then in existence stood, as remembered by the pioneers now living. 
There is some difference of opinion about several buildings, and some 
may be omitted, but this chart is approximately correct. It is accom- 
panied with a key, so that it can be readily understood. 

The contract for building the old State capitol having been let, on 
January 11, 1868, to Joseph Ward, the work had progressed steadily 
all the season of that year, so that on December 3, 1868, Governor 
Butler announced by proclamation the removal of the seat of gov- 
ernment from Omaha to Lincoln. 

The United States land office was removed from Nebraska City to 
Lincoln in 1868, and Mr. Stewart McConiga, the popular Register, 
was kept as busy as a bee assisting immigrants to take homesteads. 
In fact, men stood in rows, awaiting their turn to take a claim. 

So 1868 was a successful year for the new capital, and the future 
was full of hope. On petition of a majority of the citizens of the 
village, the County Commissioners, on April 7, 1868, ordered "that 
the town of Lincoln be declared a body incorporate, and that the 
powers and privileges be granted them as by the Statute in such cases 
are made and provided." Messrs. L. A. Scoggin, B. F. Cozad, Dr. 
Potter, W. W. Carder, and A. L. Palmer, were appointed Trustees of 
the corporation. An election was held on May 18, 1868, at which 
H. S. Jennings, S. B. Linderman, H. D. Gilbert, J. J. Van Dyke, and 
D. "W. Tingley, were elected Trustees. But sixty votes were cast at 
this election, and the town government failed to continue the organi- 
zation during that year. 

The corporate existence of Lincoln, therefore, dates from 1869, and 
the events of that period of almost precisely twenty years, 1869 to 
1889, will be the subject of the next chapter. 



Lincoln foe Twenty Years, Feom 1869 to 1889— Its Remarkable Growth 
— The Increase in Population by Years — Water Works, Paving, 
Sewerage — Evidences of the City's Wonderful Improvement — The 
Floods of 1868, 1869, 1874, and 1889. 

On petition of 189 citizens, the town of Lincoln was ordered incor- 
porated by the County Commissioners, April 7, 1869, about twenty 
years and three months ago at this writing. The corporate limits were 
made to include section twenty-six, the west half of section twenty- 
five, the southwest quarter of section twenty-four, and the south half 
of section twenty-three, in town ten north, range six east. The town 
officers were as subjoined : 

Trustees — H. S. Jennings, S. B. Linderman, H. D. Gilbert, J. L. 
McConnell, and D. W. Tingley. 

Judges of Election — Seth Robinson, A. J. Cropsey, and J. N. Town- 

The town election was held on May 3, 1 869, and a Board of Trust- 
ees were chosen, as follows : H. D. Gilbert, C. H. Gere, William 
Rowe, Philetus Peck, and J. L. McConnell. The officers of the 
Board were: H. D. Gilbert, Chairman; J. R. DeLand, Clerk; and 
Nelson C. Brock, Treasurer. 

The year 1869 was a prosperous one for Lincoln. The lot sales had 
been wonderfully successful, assuring all needed State improvements 
to be derived therefrom. Land sales continued to be active, and pop- 
ulation multiplied in town and adjacent country. Above all, the 
famously progressive Legislature of 1869 met early in the year at the 
new capitol, and not only approved all the splendid work of Governor 
David Butler and Commissioners John Gillespie and T. P. Kennard, 
but also made provision for further progress on a most wise and mag- 
nificent scale. 

Hon. C. H. Gere, in his address to the Old Settlers' Association, at 
Cushman park, on June 19, 1889, tells of the deeds of this great Leg- 
islature in the following terms, which are none too complimentary : 


The members of the first Legislature brought their cots, blankets, arid pillows, 
with them in their overland journeys in wagons (hired) or the jerkies of the stage 
line, aDd lodged, some in newly-erected store buildings, some in the upper rooms of 
the State House, while the wealthier law-makers boldly registered at the Atwood 
hostelry, and paid their bills for extras, including "noise and confusion " during 
the Senatorial mill between Tipton, Butler, and Marquett; and how they all agreed, 
after some preliminary hair-pulling, that the new capitol was a success, and or- 
dered a dome erected thereon reaching the upper atmosphere, and confirmed the 
deeds, regular and irregular, of the Commission, and gave us a cemetery in which 
to bury our dead; how they passed a bill for the organization of the State Univer- 
sity, and ordered a further sale of lots and lands to build the dome and construct 
a university building, a wing of an insane hospital, and a workshop for the peni- 
tentiary, and how they were all built in part or in whole of the old red sandstone 
of the vicinity, and came to grief soon after, may not be an interesting story to-day; 
but it was full of eloquence, fire, and significance for those who were on the ground 
at the time. 

From the adjournment of that Legislature, the body that took in hand the build- 
ing up of the new commonwealth and the laying of the foundation of its great insti- 
tutions, so ably aided by the executive officers of our first State administration, to 
this memorial gathering, every six working days of every week of the twenty years 
has seen completed an average of ten buildings on the site of the city consecrated 
to the memory of the great emancipator and war President. 

No body of men in forty days accomplished more. Every law passed by that 
memorable Legislature of '69 weighed a ton. Its work was original and creative, 
and it did it well. Its moving spirit was the Governor, David Butler. Some of 
its members came down to Lincoln from hostile localities, and had it in their 
hearts to destroy him and his works; but before the session was a fortnight old, 
his genial though homely ways, his kindness of heart, his sturdy common sense, 
the originality of bis genius, and the boldness of his conceptions, captured them, 
and when the forty days were done, no man in the two houses avowed himself the 
enemy of David Butler. 

The contract for excavating for and the construction of the base- 
ment of the State University was let to D. J. Silvers & Son, of Lo- 
gansport, Indiana, on June 10, 1869, for $23,520, and work was 
immediately commenced. The corner-stone of the university was laid 
on September 23d, with Masonic ceremonies. The building was to be 
completed on or before December 1, 1870. 

Messrs. Silvers burned the brick for the university building near 
where the Burlington & Missouri river depot now is. They bought 
hundreds of cords of wood from the settlers, thus aiding them to ob- 
tain money for current expenses. The entire bottom in the region of 
the brick works was covered with cords of wood, sand, lime, clay, and 
brick. At times, during 1869, one hundred cords or more of wood 
would be in sight at one time. This was not the first brick burned 


in the county or city. Milton Langdon burned a kiln of brick, on 
the site of West Lincoln, as early as 1867, assisted by John S. Greg- 
ory, who supplied the wood. Simon Benaclom burned a kiln of 
brick, on the ground where the Burlington depot now stands, early in 
1868, out of which a number of the chimneys were constructed. Seth 
Robinson used these brick to construct his residence, the same now 
occupied by R. E. Moore, on the northeast corner of Twelfth and P 
streets. Some of the same brick were used in building the Atwood 

The contract for building the asylum for the insane was let to Jo- 
seph Ward, about August 15, 1869, for $128,000, and work pro- 
ceeded soon thereafter. 

Besides all this, the people of Lincoln still had a very high notion 
of the value of the Salt Basin as a commercial aid to the city. Mr. 
John H. Ames, who was the pioneer historian of Lincoln, having 
published a series of articles he had j>reviously prepared for the States- 
man, a Democratic newspaper of Lincoln ; these were reprinted in 
pamphlet form in 1870 by the Journal " power press." In that work, 
the correctness of which is formally attested by the Governor, Au- 
ditor, and Secretary of State, Mr. Ames estimates that 882,001.60 
barrels of salt can be made from a single well. Allowing for cost of 
barrels and every possible shrinkage, he calculates that a single well 
would produce salt to the value of at least $488,970.22. He casts his 
•eye over the field and says that : "While the railway now being con- 
structed, and those projected, will give us direct connection with the 
Eastern markets, and enable us to compete with the Eastern salt man- 
ufactories upon their own ground, it is certain that we shall be called 
upon to supply all the vast territory lying between the Mississippi 
river and the Rocky mountains, so that three dollars per barrel may 
be considered an extremely low estimate for the minimum price at the 

The foregoing estimate of the value of the wells seems a little fab- 
ulous at this time, but when Mr. Ames wrote, the faith in the salt 
wells was substantially represented by his views. Early in 1869 
Messrs. Calm and Evans leased a section of land from the Govern- 
ment, about one and one-half miles from the postoffice, expecting to 
open thereon extensive salt works. They were still drilling the well 
when Mr. Ames wrote his account. 


With all these reasons for encouragement, Lincoln enjoyed a favor- 
able growth during 1869. In reviewing the progress of the town 
early in 1870, Mr. Ames sums up the results as follows, in the work 
just quoted : "Only about two and one-half years have elapsed since 
the Commissioners, by official proclamation, called the town of Lin- 
coln into existence. The village of Lancaster, which was included 
within its site, contained in all less than a half dozen buildings of 
every description. At the present time that number has been increased 
to over three hundred and fifty, and the number of inhabitants in 
town will not fall short of twenty-five hundred souls. The apprecia- 
tion of real property, which was so slow at the time of the first pub- 
lic sales that the Commissioners nearly despaired of being able to 
make sufficient sales of lots to defray the expenses of building the 
State House, has risen to such an extent that means have been obtained 
from that source sufficient not only for the building of the State 
House, but also for building the State University, the Agricultural 
College, and the State Lunatic Asylum, and about six hundred lots 
belonging to the State yet remain to be sold." 

In a following paragraph Mr. Ames continues: "The cash valua- 
tion of the real property of the town belonging to private individu- 
als, as ascertained from the assessment roll, is $456,956. Nine of the 
church societies, for which reservations of town lots were made, as has 
been stated, have erected neat and commodious houses of worship, and 
edifices will be erected by the remaining societies early in the present 
autumn. Six societies, namely, the Methodist Episcopal, Protestant 
Methodist, Christian, Presbyterian, Congregational, and Catholic, have :Sf 
been duly organized for some time past, maintain pastors, and ob- 
serve the regular stated services.' Advantage is being taken of the 
facilities offered in the width of the streets for setting out trees for 
park rows. Two large hotels, in addition to the one large and many 
smaller ones now in use, have been constructed, while the business of 
building substantial residences and business houses is being engaged 
in to an extent difficult of belief to one who has not seen it. And 
one thing at least is evident : that is, that every one in Lincoln is con- 
fident that he has cast his lines in pleasant places, and where there is 
to be, within a few years, a large, prosperous, and beautiful city." 

At this time, early in 1870, Mr. Ames explains that: "In Lancas- 
ter county there are no longer any Government lands subject to home- 
stead and preemption." 


In a paragraph further on he remarks that "the cars are now run- 
ning on four railroads, which are surveyed and in all likelihood will 
be built to Lincoln. The Burlington and Missouri River railroad is- 
now completed to Lincoln, and will take a westerly direction to Ft. 
Kearney, with the Union Pacific, thus placing it at nearly the center 
of a great transcontinental thoroughfare." 

During the summer of 1868 the Commonwealth had become the- 
Nebraska State Journal, which now was a daily. The Statesman was 
a weekly Democratic paper, and the Intelligencer was a monthly real 
estate periodical. 

In brief, the town had a continual run of progress — great progress,, 
considering that it started in a wilderness in 1867. Then the wild 
and vicious Legislature of 1871 disorganized the condition of prosper- 
ity of the town greatly. It impeached Governor Butler, whose acts 
as Commissioner and Governor have seldom been equaled in history 
for sagacity, courage, and judgment in the founding of a city, and 
threatened to undo all that had been done. The public was led to be- 
lieve that the location of the capital had been illegal, and property 
fell in value greatly, not to fully recover until after the grasshopper 
raids, which extended from 1873 to 1876. During the visit of these- 
pests was the dismal period of Lincoln's history. Property fell to- 
ruinously low prices, farmers had little to buy with, and hundreds 
not only left their farms, but the town of Lincoln also. But the more 
courageous of the people remained through the days of the scourge, 
and were well rewarded for their resolution. It was during the year 
1873-74 that Mr. George B. Skinner was elected Street Commissioner 
for the purpose of giving a large number of men work to keep them 
from want. Mr. Skinner was fully equal to the situation, and pro- 
ceeded to reconstruct the surface of the streets around Government 
Square, and where needed, and to make cuts and fills generally. Some 
criticised him severely and others applauded, but the needy grasshop- 
per suiferers did what the people in later years conceded willingly : 
they admitted that he was a benefactor, without whose aid ' the wolf 
could not have been kept from the door of many a home. 

But the locusts passed away in 1877, probably forever, and the city 
revived with phenomenal rapidity : so much so that the census of 
1880 showed a population of 14,000. And from that day to this the 
growth has been both constant and rapid. The population of the 


city is now fully fifty thousand, as indicated by the city directory, the 
voting population, and the school census. 

The growth of the city was so rapid that the wild animals of this 
region did not seem to appreciate the situation for several years, and 
failed to move westward away from civilization. Deer, wolves, and 
other wild animals, were captured within the present city limits as late 
as 1872, and Lincoln was a game and fur market for a number of 
years later. Mr. Simon Benadom was the wholesale fur and game 
merchant of Lincoln and all surrounding country for many miles, 
from 1869 for a subsequent period of ten years. In the winter of 
1871 and 1872 he went east with his stock, and in a couple of months 
returned to find that Rich & Oppenheimer had purchased $2,000 
worth of furs at their store, in course of business in his absence. He 
purchased these at once and bought $1,800 worth besides of Simon 
Kelly, who had taken a few barrels of whisky out on the Blue river 
and traded it for these furs with trappers he found there. Mr. Ben- 
adom used to buy furs to the value of about $20,000 a season along 
about 1870 to 1872. The best of the pelts he sold in New York, in 
person. Others were disposed of in Chicago and elsewhere. The fur 
trade was rather depressed in the winter of 1873-4, and to be busy 
Mr. Benadom bought prairie chickens and quail. In two months he 
shipped sixteen thousand of each to New York, packing them in boxes 
and barrels and sending them East in a frozen condition. It can be 
seen that this city was in a great game country fifteen years ago, whose 
natural wildness was not by any means subdued. In this connec- 
tion we can illustrate by saying that Benadom alone killed fully fifty 
deer on the present plat of Lincoln during a few years after he came 
here, in 1868. He generally found them in the brush and tall grass 
of the Salt creek bottom, and his deer hounds having started one, he 
would catch the animal on the fly, being a precise rifleman. He also- 
shot twenty-one wolves on the present plat of Lincoln. 

The Government postoffice was begun in 1874 and completed in> 
1879, at a cost of $200,000. It is built of gray limestone from the 
Gwyer quarries on the Platte river. Its architecture is modern Gothic, 

The Lincoln Gas Light Company was organized in 1872, with ai 
capital stock of $60,000, and has grown and prospered ever since. 

In 1 880 the Lincoln Telephone Exchange was organized, with aj 
capital stock of $10,000. At this time 615 instruments are in use in 


the city, with connections with fifty-seven towns in Nebraska and 
sixty-six towns in Iowa. 

The city voted the Lincoln Street Railway Company right of way 
on the streets in April, 1881. Now that company has lines connecting 
all parts of the city, of which C. J. Ernst is the efficient manager. 
Besides, there are four other lines. The Rapid Transit line was built 
in 1887, and extended in 1888. At first its cars were operated with 
dummy engines, but these are now used only on the part of the line 
from U street to West Lincoln. The Rapid Transit connects West 
Lincoln with the asylum, by way of Twelfth street in the city. The 
Capital Heights line has its present terminus at O and Twelfth. It 
thence runs to N, thence to Eighteenth, thence to G, and eastward 
about two miles. This line was built in 1888. The Standard Street 
Railway was built in the fall of 1888, to connect the Lincoln com- 
pany's line on North Twenty-seventh street with the Wesleyan Uni- 
versity. The Bethany Heights line is being built this year, to connect 
the Lincoln company's line at V and Thirty-third with the Christian 
University. One of these companies has a capital of $1,000,000 
and all now operate over thirty-one miles, of track. 

The City Water Works were begun in 1882, and consisted for seven 
years of a single well in the park bounded by D and F and Eighth 
and Sixth. The supply then was only about 1,000,000 gallons per 
clay. This well proving inadequate to the demands of the growing 
city, an attempt was made in 1887 to increase the supply by sinking 
a pipe in the center of the well. This caused the water to become 
salty in taste. The same year Mr. Joseph Burns was employed by 
the city to attempt to construct a system of driven wells in Sixth 
street, and connect them with the pumping station. These wells were 
driven a little too deeply, perhaps, and most of them produced salt 
water after a few days' use. After great annoyance and much delay, 
it was finally decided to attempt to establish a well near N and the 
channel of the Antelope. This well was completed in July of the 
present year, and is now producing about 1,000,000 gallons of pure 
water daily, to the great satisfaction of the city. Operations for an 
additional supply in that vicinity are now going forward. During 
the last six weeks operations have been progressing at the park wells, 
and it is now believed that the trouble will be done away with, and 
that pure water will hereafter be supplied from that well also. 

The pork-packing business was begun at West Lincoln in 1881, 


with a capacity of 10,000 hogs. Now there are two large packing 
houses there, capable of handling all the hogs that can be bought 
for many miles around. The dressed beef business is also carried on 
there, having been begun last year. The packing business of the 
city is growing constantly, and will soon be one of the most import- 
ant commercial interests of Nebraska. There are extensive stock- 
yard facilities connected with the packing houses. 

The Board of Trade was organized January 16th, 1880, with a 
large membership, designed to benefit the city in every possible way. 
It is now in a very prosperous condition, and has several hundred 
members. It raised $10,000 by subscription this summer to adver- 
tise the city, and is a most enterprising organization, from which the 
city will reap great benefit for years to come. The officers of the 
board are given elsewhere in this chapter. 

In 1887 a contract was awarded to H. T. Clarke and Hugh Mur- 
phy to pave the central portions of the business part of the city, 
from N to S on Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth, and from N to Q on 
Tenth and Eleventh, and from N to P from Eleventh to Fourteenth, 
the outside streets named being included, and all comprising the first 
and second paving districts. The city had had no experience in pav- 
ing whatever, and when the contractors were ready to lay blocks, it 
was found that gas pipe, water mains, sewer pipe, and street car 
tracks, must all be put down before paving could go on. This re- 
quired a vast amount of work and expenditure, and delay upon delay 
accumulated until the patience of the public was wholly exhausted. 
The newspapers were filled with criticisms of the council, board of pub- 
lic works, and contractors. The streets presented the appearance of a 
fortified city, with ditches, trenches, heaps and ridges of earth, and 
business men were blockaded for entire blocks, for weeks at a time, 
with no outlet but the sidewalk, and in many cases with no crossings 
for pedestrians. The streets were frequently flooded with water to 
settle them. The worst siege was around Government Square. The 
Capital Hotel was confronted with a small swamp for several months. 

But the work was finally done, in 1888, and everybody agreed 
that the results were worth the worry. The city was beautified, 
verily transformed from a raw-looking western town, with sidewalks 
full of ups and downs, and a general evidence of disorganization and 
lack of system. The paving was followed by a general leveling 
down and extending of the walks to conform to the line and grade 


of the curbstone, and now the city is as beautiful as any place of its 
age in the United States. During 1888 and the present year, Stout 
& Buckstaff, who have contracted for paving districts three, four, 
five, six, seven, and eight, have added several miles of paving, so 
that over eight miles of the streets of the city are now paved, and 
about fifteen miles are under contract. Much of the paving has been 
done with cedar blocks, but that now being constructed is being laid 
with vitrified brick, manufactured for the purpose in this city by 
Stout & Buckstaff. It is believed that this kind of paving will 
prove durable and successful. 

The sanitary sewerage of the city is an extensive system, now in 
perfect operation. The storm-water sewers perform the service in- 
tended, in the heaviest storms. The water service of the city is very 
complete in all but the supply, and that defect will be fully remedied 
within a short period. 

In brief, Lincoln is in a condition to continue its prosperity, and 
afford such enjoyment to its inhabitants as only a completely-built 
city can do, possessed of such ample improvements and acquirements 
in the way of educational, commercial, social, and religious facilities. 
With equal progress, relatively, for ten years, such as Lincoln has 
made in ten years past, it will be one of the most beautiful home 
cities in the Nation. The real value of the property of Lincoln is 
now not far from fifty million dollars. Owing to the pernicious 
system of assessment in vogue, it appears much less; but it is be- 
lieved that a careful calculation will show that the genuine worth of 
the property within the city limits is fully equal to the sum stated. 

The county is now erecting a court house in the city, to cost about 
$200,000. It will probably be completed the present year. The 
Board of Trade announces the material progress of the city during 
1888, taken from official sources, as follows: 

Public buildings erected $395,000 00 

Public improvements made ." 627,368 00 

Semi-public improvements....- 88,500 00 

Kail way improvements 64,950 00 

Business blocks erected 459,000 00 

Eesidences erected 1,014,100 00 

Churches erected 184,500 00 

Colleges and School buildings erected 156,500 00 

Factories built 297,500 00 

Total improvements for 1888 $3,287,418 00 


The State Fair is located at Lincoln, and has been very successful 
ever since it opened at this point. Funke's Opera House, at the 
southwest corner of O and Twelfth, is a first-class theatre, and supplies 
all the leading attractions. It is now under the direct and very skill- 
ful management of Mr. Robert McReynolds, who, with Mr. L. M. 
Crawford, of Topeka, Kansas, organized a large theatrical circuit in 
1888, covering Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, and several other States. 
Companies can be engaged at the Lincoln office for all the theatres in 
the circuit, which includes all the principal towns, and may be billed 
through without further trouble to their managers. 

In 1888 Mr. E. H. Andrus supplied a great need to the city by 
improving a well watered and amply shaded tract of land, about three 
and one-half miles west of the city, with conveniences for outdoor 
recreation. He has since conducted it as a park where picnics, con- 
ventions, camp-meetings, games, and all manner of excursions, can 
resort and find pleasant accommodations at all times. Outings of an 
entire week are often held there, and excursions of twelve and fifteen 
hundred people frequently visit the park, especially on Sunday, when 
excellent musical and appropriate programmes are carried out by the 
leading musicians and speakers of the city. 

The city possesses a public library, founded in December, 1875, 
which is supported by taxation. It contains over 5,000 volumes, de- 
signed for common use, and most of. the leading periodicals of the 
day are in its files. It is open every day in the week. 

The State Library, at the capitol building, comprises over 30,000 
volumes, mainly on legal subjects. As a law library it is considered 
very complete. 

The State University library includes over 10,000 volumes of mis- 
cellaneous books. Its list of works on science and special subjects is 
very elaborate. 

The Young Men's Christian Association has also begun to found a 
library, so that Lincoln is well supplied with scholastic appurtenances 
for a place but twenty-two years old. 

Lincoln is at the point of confluence of five or six small streams 
of different sizes, which together drain a surface of over 700 square 
miles. During Monday, August 12, 1889, and part of the follow- 
ing night, the rain poured down over all this territory. The com- 
bined waters began to gather at the Lincoln basin during Monday, 


and rose rapidly all night, covering much of the low land near the 
city and along the creek to various depths, depending on the eleva- 
tion. From one to two thousand families live on this low ground, 
mostly in little cottages, and before Tuesday morning many of these 
houses were surrounded by water, and in many cases partly sub- 
merged, though generally the water only covered the first floor but a 
few inches. In many cases, however, the water rose to the depth of 
two or three feet in the buildings, and in a few instances even to 
greater depths. Hundreds of people were not aware of the rapid rise 
of the water until it began to penetrate their houses, and then there 
was a general hurry to escape; but wading to high ground over sub- 
merged and mirey streets in the dark, was no easy task, and many did 
not dare attempt it. The waters continued to pile up until Tuesday 
morning, and then the police, city officers, and many citizens, came 
to the rescue, and the frightened residents of the valley were gathered 
on shore, along the hill. Many came to dry land on small rafts, others 
in boats, and still others waded. The unfortunate people whose 
homes were flooded were generally poor, and they presented a forlorn 
spectacle as they huddled along the margins of the advancing floods, 
and watched the progress of the threatening waters. During the day 
Mayor Graham and other city officials threw open the Park school- 
house and other buildings to the refugees, and they were cared for the 
best that circumstances would permit. All were rescued by Tuesday 
noon. The water reached its height toward evening on Tuesday, the 
13th, and before morning began to recede, and continued to fall slowly 
until within usual limits, which required most of the week. Fortu- 
nately the weather was warm and pleasant after Tuesday morning. 
After the flood the houses were wet, the yards sloppy, and the streets 
mirey, in the flooded district, and it required several days for the 
people to get back into their homes. Not much damage was done the 
houses, though gardens were ruined, furniture partly spoiled, and 
the atmosphere rendered unhealthful and disagreeable. No lives were 

Many factories, lumber-yards, and similar business institutions, 
were flooded and damaged. The water was over most of the tracks- 
south of O street, and trains were delayed on all lines. The Union 
Pacific to Beatrice did not use its own track for three or four days, and 
the Burlington road to Tecumseh was impassable for a longer time, 


"Within the city the damage to railroad property was not very severe. 
A rise of a foot or two more would have proved very disastrous. 

The water did not quite cover the crown of the pavement at the 
crossing at Seventh and N streets. The blocks on that corner were 
nearly all displaced, and the pavement had to be repaired a little dis- 
tance north on Seventh and east on N. Boats landed against the 
bank on the west side of the northwest corner of the park, at F and 
Sixth streets. 

This was not the highest that Salt creek has been since Lincoln 
was founded, though it was vastly the most damaging flood the city 
has known, owing to the development of property on the low lands. 
In fact, big freshets have been frequent, and the waters have piled up 
in front of Lincoln in a formidable way on several occasions, espe- 
cially since the stream was blocked by dams below the city. There 
was a good deal of a flood in 1868, and a deluge in 1869, when a 
prominent editor of the city went boating, fell in, and was tortured 
with cramps for hours afterward. The torrent of 1874 was especially 
memorable, the water being made very high by a gorge of brush and 
drift below the town. Boats landed at the foot of the hill, Eighth and 
O streets, and a son of William Hyatt was drowned on the block 
bounded by Seventh and Eighth and O and P streets. A man named 
T. W. Taylor was also drowned near the city during this freshet. But 
Mr. M. G. Bohanan, who had particular reason to observe the rela- 
tive rise of the creek on account of the location of his slaughter- 
house, is sure that the flood in April, 1887, following the winter of 
almost unprecedented snow fall, surpassed all other freshets before or 
since by a foot or two. Owing to the accumulations of ice, and suc- 
ceeding cold weather, it was the hardest deluge to contend with, 
though it affected the city but little, as there was but little settlement 
and few factories on the low land at that time. 

Salt creek has shown a disposition to flood the flat land once or 
twice since, but there has really been no freshet of the formidable 
character of that of the present summer for several years past. 



Lincoln Politically peom the Beginning to the Peesent — Her Public 
Improvements —Paving, Sewerage, and Water-works — Semi-public 
Works — Her Fire Department — The Police Force — The Present 
City Officers and Officers of the Board of Trade. 

As has been stated in an earlier chapter, the town of Lincoln was 
organized in 1869. 

In 1870 the Town Trustees elected were C. N. Baird, D. S. Smith, 
D. A. Sherwood, C. H. Gere, and H. J. Walsh. C. H. Gere was 
■elected Chairman, R. O. Phillips was chosen Clerk, and N. C. Brock 
was continued as Treasurer of the board. 

On March 18, 1871, the town was organized as a city of the second 
■class, under a charter. The election occurred on the third of the fol- 
lowing April, and the officers then chosen were: W. F. Chapin, 
Mayor; C. H. Street and R. E. Moore, Police Judges; A. E. Hast- 
ings, Marshal ; T. F. L. Catlin, Clerk ; G. W. Ballentine, Treasurer ; 
Councilmen — First ward, L. A. Scoggin and|C C. Burr ; Second ward, 
D. A. Sherwood and J. M. Creamer; Third ward, J. J. Gosper and 
J. L. McConnell ; T. T. Murphy, City Engineer. Thereafter, until 
1889, the city officers elected were as follows: 

1872.— The city officers of 1 872 were : Mayor, E. E. Brown ; Coun- 
cilmen — First ward, J. R. Fairbank (two years) and L. A. Scoggin, 
{one year;) Second ward, William McLaughlin (two years) and D. A. 
Sherwood, (one year;) Third ward, G. G. Owen (two years) and J. J. 
Gosper, (one year;) Clerk, Thomas L. Catlin; Treasurer, William A. 
Coleman ; Marshal, John McManigal ; City Physician, J. O. Carter ; 
Police Judge, JR. E. Moore ; Engineer, Tom I. Atwood. 

1873. — Mayor, Robert D. Silvers; Councilmen — First ward, L. A. 
Scoggin and J. R. Fairbank ; Second ward, T. P. Quick and William 
McLaughlin ; Third ward, N. S. Scott and S. G. Owen ; City Clerk, 
R. N. Vedder, (resigned September 2d, and E. P. Roggen appointed 
to fill vacancy ;) Treasurer, William Coleman ; Marshal, Brad Ringer ; 
^Engineer, Thomas I. Atwood ; City Physician, S. W. Robinson ; Po- 


lice Judge, Lewis A. GrofF, and C. Green, Police Judge to fill vacancy; 
Street Commissioner and Fire Warden, George B. Skinner; and T. 
P. Quick, Chief of the Fire Department. 

1874. — Mayor, Samuel W. Little; Councilmen — First ward, L. A. 
Scoggin and John Eaton ; Second ward, William McLaughlin and T. 
P. Quick; Third ward, R. O. Phillips and N. S. Scott; Clerk, E. P. 
Roggen; Treasurer, William A. Sharrar; Marshal, P. H. Cooper; 
City Engineer, A. Roberts ; Police Judge, J. H. Foxworthy ; Street 
Commissioner and Fire Warden, George B. Skinner; Chief of the 
Fire Department, T. P. Quick, and Gran. Ensign Assistant. 

1875.— Mayor, Amasa Cobb; City Clerk, R. W. Charter; Treas- 
urer, B. F. Fisher; Police Judge, R. W. Taylor; Marshal, P. H. 
Cooper ; City Engineer, A. Roberts ; Cemetery Trustee, Philetus Peck ;. 
Councilmen — First ward, James Ledwith, and J. R. Fairbank to fill 
vacancy; Second ward, Fred. W. Krone; Third ward, O. Kingman; 
T. P. Quick, Chief of Fire Department. 

1876.— Mayor, R. D. Silver; City Clerk, George V. Kent; City 
' Treasurer, James McConnelJ ; Marshal, P. H. Cooper; Police Judge,, 
John McLean ; City Engineer, J. P. Walton; Cemetery Trustee, Israel 
Putnam ; Councilmen — First ward, John Monteith ; Second ward, L~ 
W. Billingsley ; Third ward, C. M. Leighton and E. W. Morgan ; T- 
P. Quick, Chief of the Fire Department. 

1 877.— Mayor, H. W. Hardy ; Clerk, R. C. Manley ; Treasurer, 
James McConnell ; Police Judge, J. S. Dales ; Marshal, Thomas Carr ; 
Engineer, J. P. Walton ; Cemetery Trustee, J. J. Turner ; Council- 
men — First ward, James Ledwith; Second ward, Rufus Yard and J. 
B. Wright, (elected in September to fill vacancy;) Third ward, J. K. 
Honeywell ; T. P. Quick, Chief of the Fire Department. 

1878.— Mayor, H. W. Hardy ; Clerk, R. W. Jacobs ; Treasurer, 
James McConnell ; Marshal, Thomas Carr; Police Judge, J. S. Dales; 
Engineer, J. P. Walton ; Cemetery Trustee, A. M. Davis ; Council- 
men — First ward, James H. Dailey; Second ward, R. P. R. Millar, 
Third ward, Austin Humphrey ; Isaac M. Raymond, Chief of the Fire 

1879.— Mayor, Seth P. Galey; Clerk, M. Nelson; Treasurer, D. 
B. Cropsey; Police Judge, J. S. Dales; Marshal, I. L. Lyman; City 
Engineer, J. P. Walton ; T. P. Quick, Chief of the Fire Department, 
Councilmen — First ward, W. C. Griffith and James Ledwith ; Second 


ward, R. P. E. Millar and John B. Wright; Third ward, Austin 
Humphrey and H. J. Walsh. 

1880.— Mayor, John B.Wright; Clerk, R. C. Manley; Treasurer, 
D. B. Cropsey; Police Judge, J. S. Dales; Chief of Police, I. L. 
Lyman. Councilmen — First ward, R. Grimes and J. Ledwith ; Sec- 
ond ward, J. L. Caldwell and J. Frederick Krone ; Third ward, H. J. 
Walsh and John Doolittle; City Engineer, J. P. Walton; Chief of 
the Fire Department, T. P. Quick. 

1881.— John B. Wright, Mayor ; R. C. Manley, City Clerk; A.C- 
Cross, Treasurer ; J. S. Dales, Police Judge ; N. S. Scott, City Engin- 
eer; Cemetery Trustee, L. J. Byer, and to fill vacancy, A. M. Davis. 
For Councilmen — First ward, C. C. Munson; Second ward, S. B. 
Linderman ; Third ward, J. H. Harley. 

The total vote cast at this election was 1,400. 

The question of voting the Lincoln City Street Railway Company 
right-of-way over north and south streets from Seventh to Seventeenth, 
and on east and west streets from A to R, was carried in favor of the 
license by a vote of 841 to 405. 

1882. — At the city election of April 4, 1882, 1,899 votes were cast, 
with the following result : Mayor, John Doolittle; City Clerk, R. C. 
Manley ; City Treasurer, A. C. Cass ; Police Judge, B. F. Cobb ; City 
Engineer, J. P. Walton; Cemetery Trustee, A. M. Davis. Council- 
men — First ward, H. Shaberg; Second ward, Fred Krone; Third 
ward, C. L. Baum. 

1883. — At the city election held on April 3, 1883, 1,705 votes were 
polled. The election resulted in the choice of the following officers : 
Mayor, R. E. Moore; City Clerk, R. C. Manley; City Treasurer, 
John T. Jones; Cemetery Trustee, Lewis Gregory; Councilmen — 
First ward, W. C. Lane, Second ward, S. B. Linderman ; Third ward, 
Charles West; Fourth ward, W. J. Cooper long term, and J. H. Har- 
ley short term. 

1884,.— The city election of 1884 was held April 1st, and 1^550 
votes were cast. Mayor, R. E. Moore ; Clerk, R. C. Manley, and 
Treasurer, John T. Jones, held over. The elected officers were : Po- 
lice Judge, M. Montgomery; Cemetery Trustee, H. J. Walsh. Coun- 
cilmen — First ward, N. C. Brock; Second ward, H. P. Lau; Third 
ward, J. W. Winger ; Fourth ward, J. R. Webster. 

IHS'j. — At the city election held on April 7, 1885, 2,447 votes were 


cast. The officers elected were — Mayor, C. C. Burr; City Clerk, R. 
C. Manley ; City Treasurer, John T. Jones ; Cemetery Trustee, A. M. 
Davis. Councilmen — First ward, James Dailey ; Second ward, L. W. 
Billingsley; Third ward, A. E. Hargreaves; Fourth ward, W. J. 

At this election Burr received 1,115 votes, Fitzgerald 1,085 votes, 
and H. W. Hardy 247 votes. The votes were counted on the 9th of 
April, and on the evening of the 10th the Council met to consider a 
notice of contest by John Fitzgerald. The altorneys for Fitzgerald, 
Whedon, Sawyer & Snell, objected to the jurisdiction of the Council 
to hear and determine the contest. On motion of Billingsley and 
Webster, the objection was sustained, and the Mayor and Clerk were 
ordered to issue certificates to candidates having a majority on the 
face of the returns. Attorney Whedon gave notice that he would 
apply to the Supreme Court for a perpetual injunction to restrain 
those officers from issuing the certificate ; but the matter was dropped 
without further proceedings. 

1886.— The city election of 1886 was held on April 6th. Police 
Judge, Cemetery Trustee, and Councilmen, were elected, as follows : Po- 
lice Judge, A. F. Parsons ; [removed from office and place filled by 
appointment of H. J. Whitmore ;] Cemetery Trustee, Lewis Gregory. 
Councilmen — First ward, N. C. Brock; Second ward, John Fraas; 
Third ward, H. H. Dean; Fourth ward, R. B. Graham. The total 
vote cast was 2,668. 

1887. — The city election of 1887 took place on April 5th, and 
3,919 votes were cast. E. P. Roggen was the regular Republican 
nominee ; A. J. Sawyer, the independent reform movement nominee, 
and A. J. Cropsey, the straight-out Prohibition nominee. This elec- 
tion was carried on without regard to party affiliation. Roggen re- 
ceived 1,478 votes; Sawyer, 2,013 votes, and Cropsey, 428 votes. 
The election resulted as follows: Mayor, A. J. Sawyer; Clerk, R. C. 
Manley ; Treasurer, J. T. Jones ; Cemetery Trustee, L. J. Byer. 
Councilmen — First ward, J. H. Dailey; Second ward, L. W. Bil- 
lingsley; Third ward, J. M. Burks; Fourth ward, W. J. Cooper; 
Fifth ward, long term, Gran. Ensign ; short term, J. Z. Briscoe ; Sixth 
ward, long term, (two years,) L. C. Pace; short term, (one year,) Fred. 
A. Hovey. The question of voting right-of-way on the streets to the 
Rapid Transit Street Railway Company was settled at this election in 


favor of the license by a vote of 2,571 to 43. C. A. Atkinson was 
appointed City Attorney, and P. H. Cooper Chief of Police, or Mar- 

1888. — The city election of 1888 was held on April 3d, and the 
total vote was 4,063. The following officers were elected : Police 
Judge, W. J. Houston; Cemetery Trustee, A. M. Davis. Council- 
men — First ward, A. Halter; Second ward, John Fraas; Third ward, 
H. H. Dean ; Fourth ward, R. B. Graham; Fifth ward, Louie Meyer; 
Sixth ward, H. M. Rice. G. M. Lambertson was appointed City 

1889.— At the city election of April, 1889, R. B. Graham was 
elected Mayor; D. C. Van Duyn, Clerk; Elmer B. Stephenson, 
Treasurer; O. 1ST. Gardner, City Engineer; I. L. Lyman, Water 

The Legislature of 1889 gave the city a new charter, which pro- 
vided for an Excise Board, designed to have exclusive control of the 
liquor licenses of the city, instead of the Council, as theretofore. The 
first board, elected in April at the city election, were John Doolittle 
and C. J. Daubach. The Mayor is an ex-officio member of the board, 
so that Mayor Graham is the third member of the first board. The 
Councilmen chosen at this election were : First ward, P. Hayden ; Sec- 
ond ward, J. C. Saulsbury ; Third ward, William McLaughlin; Fourth 
ward, F. A. Boehmer and W. S. Hamilton ; Fifth ward, H. M. Bush- 
nell; Sixth ward, L. C. Pace. 

Having become a candidate for Mayor, Mr. R. B. Graham resigned 
his chair in the Council before the election. Mr.W. J. Cooper was nom- 
inated for the place, and elected. But it afterward seemed that there 
was some technical invalidity in his election, and it was thought best 
to go through the formality of an election again. So the Mayor called 
a special election; and, there seeming to be no opposition to Mr. 
Cooper, less than half the vote in the ward was polled. But during 
the day some schemers quietly put W. S. Hamilton in the field against 
Cooper, and to the surprise of the city he was elected. His friends 
had completely surprised and taken the camp of the Cooper people. 
This and other causes led up to the appointment of a committee of 
Councilmen, by the Council, to investigate allegations of corruption 
on the part of the Council. of 1887 and 1888. The committee con- 
sisted of W. S. Hamilton, H. M. Bushnell, H. H. Dean, L. C. Pace, 


and William McLaughlin. After intermittent sittings for several 
weeks in May and June, during which numerous witnesses were ex- 
amined, it appeared by the report of the committee that nothing of 
much consequence could be charged against any one. The city bonds 
had been fairly well handled, the storm-water sewers had been well 
■constructed, and the charges against Councilmen of having been sub- 
sidized were not sustained. It appeared that VV. J. Cooper had sold 
material to the city at high prices, while Councilman, under the name 
of one of his men ; and this was about all that seemed worthy of criti- 
cism. The atmosphere now cleared up, and no more was heard about 
the matter. 

The entire list of city officers, including the officers of the Board of 
Trade, for 1889, are as follows: 


Hon. R. B. Graham, Mayor. 

Councilmen. — First ward, A. Halter, P. Hayden ; Second ward, John 
Fraas, J. C. Saulsbury ; Third ward, H. H. Dean President, William 
McLaughlin; Fourth ward, F. A. Boehmer, W. S. Hamilton; Fifth 
ward; L. Meyer, H. M. Bushnell; Sixth ward, H. M. Rice, L. C. 

Other City Officers.— D. C. Van Duyn, City Clerk; It H. Town- 
ley, Deputy; E. B.Stephenson, Treasurer; R. C. Hazlett, Deputy ; G. 
M. Lambertson, City Attorney ; W. J. Houston, Police Judge; O. JN" 
Gardner, City Civil Engineer; I. L. Lyman, Water Commissioner 
L. J. Byers, Street Commissioner; W. W. Carder, Chief Police; W 
H. Newbury, Chief Fire Department; V. H. Dyer, Sewer Inspector 
Joseph McGraw, Gas Inspector; Wm. Rhode, Inspector Live Stock; 
A. H. Bartram, Health Officer. 

Board Public Works. — A. Humphrey, Chairman; R. C. Manley, 
W. J. Marshall. 

Excise Board. — R. B. Graham, President ; D. C. Van Duyn, Clerk ; 
John Doolittle, C. J. Daubach. 

President, R. H. Oakley; Secretary, C. A. Atkinson. 
Directors. — R. H. Oakley, President; T. P. Kennard, T. W. Low- 
rey, J. J. Imhoff, Eli Plummer, Joseph Boehmer, C. J. Ernst, A. E. 


Hargreaves, Mason Gregg, M. L. Trester, A. H. Weir, C. W. Mosher, 
C T. Brown. 

Committees. — A. H. Weir, Chairman Railroads ; Jacob Rocke, Chair- 
man Live Stock; J. J. Imhoff, Chairman Miscellaneous; C. W. Mo- 
sher, Chairman Rules; M. L. Trester, Chairman Membership; Joseph 
Boehmer, Chairman Finance; C. J. Ernst, Chairman Executive; T 
W. Lowrey, Chairman Transportation; T. P. Kennard, Chairman 
Manufactories; Eli Plummer, Chairman Reception; Mason Gregg, 
Chairman Market Reports; H. D. Hathaway, Chairman Papers and 
Periodicals ; 0. T. Brown, Chairman Real Estate ; A. E. Hargreaves, 
Chairman Arbitration ; C. A. Atkinson, Chairman Advertising. 


The Fire Department has kept pace with the growth of the city, 
and to-day is recognized by the Board of Underwriters to be one of 
the best organized, disciplined, and equipped, departments in the 
West ; in fact, second to none. The first volunteer fire company was 
organized in 1875, and was named the Phcenix Hook and Ladder 
Company. In 1872 the growth of the city demanded better protec- 
tion, and a Silsby steam fire engine was purchased, and named The W. 
F. Chapin, the Hon. W. F. Chapin being the Mayor of the city in 
that year. Tw r o hose carts, and 1 ,000 feet of rubber hose, were pur- 
chased at the same time, and a company called the Chapin Hose Com- 
pany was organized, with a roster of fifty men. In 1880 it was found 
necessary to increase the strength of the department, and a second size 
Silsby steamer was purchased and added to the equipment. No changes 
were made in the department until 1882, when the Chapin Hose Com- 
pany was disbanded, (the Hook and Ladder Company having dis- 
banded in 1879.) Two new hose companies were organized, known 
as the Merchants' Hose Company No. 1, and the Fitzgerald Hose 
•Company No. 2. The " Fitzgeralds " have a national reputation, 
having won the Nebraska State championship belt and cart in the 
years 1884 and 1885, and the world's championship at the city of 
New Orleans in 1886. On January 4, 1886, the department was re- 
organized, Hon. C. C. Burr, Mayor, by Fire Warden Newbury, and 
five full-paid men appointed and a two-horse, four-wheel hose carriage 
purchased and put in service. In January, 1887, the Merchants' and 
Fitzgerald Hose Companies were disbanded, thus ending the life and 


useful career of the volunteer fire department of Lincoln, which had 
performed faithful and efficient service for twelve years. But the- 
rapid growth and increasing area of the city demanded a change, and 
a metropolitan system, with trained and experienced men, constantly 
on duty, was placed in service. In the month of January, 1887, Hon. 
A. J. Sawyer Mayor, the department was reorganized by Chief W. H. 
Newbury and placed on a solid and substantial basis. The fire depart- 
ment at present consists of thirty-five full-paid men, the organization 
being as follows : one Chief of Fire Department, one Assistant Chief, 
three Captains, two engineers of steamers, and twenty-eight men. Sal- 
aries: Chief, $140.00 per month; Captains, $75.00 per month ; engin*- 
eers of steamers, $75.00 per month ; drivers, pipemen, linemen, $70.00 
per month. Apparatus in service : Two four-wheel two-horse hose 
carts, one hose wagon, two four-wheel two-horse chemical engines, 
hook and ladder truck, one aerial hook and ladder truck, one chief's 
buggy, one supply wagon, nineteen horses. Annual expense of main- 
taining department, present equipment, $35,000.00. 

The engine houses are large double houses, fitted up with all the 
modern and best improved electrical appliances, and will contain four 
pieces of apparatus each. Fire department headquarters — Engine 
house No. 1 is situated at the corner of Tenth and Q, streets. Engipe 
house No. 2, corner of O and Twenty-third streets, and engine house 
No. 4, at F street, between Twelfth and Thirteenth streets. 

The first chief of the volunteer department was the Hon. Seth Lin- 
derman. His successor was T. P. Quick esq., who held the position 
for about ten years. The Hon. N. C. Abbott, Hon. I. M. Raymond, 
Hon. Gran Ensign, and Hon. I. L. Lyman, gentlemen who have 
represented the State, county, and city, in different positions of trust 
and honor, were at different times chief of the volunteer organization. 
The present chief, "Wm. H. Newbury, was appointed Fire Warden of 
the city in July, 1885; appointed Chief of the Fire Department in 
April, 1887. Through his untiring efforts the city of Lincoln has 
to-day a fire department of which it is justly proud. No city in the 
country of the same size has had so small a percentage of loss from 
fire as Lincoln has had since the organization of the paid department. 

The roster of the the Fire Department, as at present constituted, is 
as follows : 

Chief — W. H. Newbury. Captains — J. Morrow of company No- 


1, G. H. Priest of company No. 2. Drivers — F. Maclen, P. Kuy- 
kendall, and R. Malone. Engineer — J. Heberling. Stoker — Frank 
Strattan. Firemen— H. Stratton, C. W. Clyter, B. H. Floyd, J. C. 
McCune, A. B. Hosrnan, G. R. Slat, F. G. Fawcett, F. McMillan, J. 
Fitzgerald, and S. S. Smith. 

One of the most successful institutions of the city is the Red Rib- 
bon Club, which was organized by John B. Finch in November, 1877, 
at a place on the east side of Tenth street, about four doors north of 
Tenth and N streets. For years it held its meetings in "Red Ribbon 
Hall," at the northwest corner of Twelfth and M streets. Every Sun- 
day afternoon in the year Mr. George B. Skinner, who has been pres- 
ident, manager, and inspiration to the organization from its beginning, 
would be found on the platform directing the meeting. The pro- 
grammes consisted of singing from " Gospel Hymns," or similar mu- 
sical books, and voluntary addresses by persons in the audience, though 
Mr. Skinner would often call upon men or women whom he thought 
could make short, useful addresses. Hundreds of drinking men have 
been induced to sign the pledge by this club, and by it assisted to 
keep the good resolution. The club now meets at a large assembly 
room on T street, between Eleventh and Twelfth street. The roll of 
the organization now numbers fully 17,000 persons, including many 
of the leading men and women of the city and State. For twelve 
years it has lived and expanded, and is now, perhaps, the largest, 
oldest, and most successful, association of its kind in the United States. 
For all this growth and power it is substantially indebted to George 
B. Skinner. 

Lincoln has hotel accommodations for fully 2,000 persons. A 
sketch of the earliest hotel history has already been given in another 
chapter, where reference is made to the " Pioneer," the " Cadman," and 
the "Atwood." 

In 1869 Wilson constructed a store foundation on the south- 
west corner of P and Eleventh streets. This lot and one other to the 
southward, were sold to James Griffith, who still resides in this county, 
who disposed of them to Cropsey & England. That firm passed the 
property over to Dr. Scott, who completed the building on the foun- 
dation already there, and opened a drug store in it about 1869. 
In 1870 he converted the building into a hotel, which was managed 


by John Douglas^ and it was called the "Douglas House." Mr- 
Douglas conducted it until November, 1873, when Mr. J. J. Imhoff 
bought it, called it the "Commercial Hotel," and at once greatly en- 
larged it. Its patronage increased constantly under his control, and 
he was obliged to enlarge it to its present dimensions of 150x108 J 
feet, and to three stories in height, so as to possess a capacity to accom- 
modate easily 300 guests. It soon became the political headquarters 
of the State and the principal rendezvous of politicians, associations, 
and public affairs generally. Mr. Imhoff owned the hotel until the 
opening of 1886, when Mr. C. W. Kitchen bought it, changed its 
name to "The Capital Hotel," and managed it until May 1st, 1887. 
Then Hon. Edward P. Roggen became its landlord, Mr. W. H. B. 
Stout having bought it, and so continued until March, 1889, when 
Mr. G. F. Macdonald, formerly of the Millard Hotel in Omaha, 
bought an interest with Mr. Roggen, and since that date the house 
has been managed by Roggen & Macdonald. It still continues to be 
the political hub of the State, being Republican State headquarters an- 
nually. It possesses all modern conveniences and improvements and 
is the best known hotel in Nebraska. Mr. Richard W. Johnson, 
who was chief clerk with Mr. Imhoff, occupied the same position with 
Mr. Kitchen, and has been the chief clerk with Mr. Roggen and 
Messrs. Roggen & Macdonald. He is one of the worthiest and best 
hotel men in Nebraska, and one of the best known. 

Next in order of origin is Opelt's Hotel, at Ninth and Q, streets, 
which was built by Mr. J. S. Atwood, who completed it in 1880. 
It was then named the " Arlington" house. It was the largest hotel 
in Nebraska at that date, and yet ranks among the most spacious and 
excellent hostelries in the State. Mr. Joseph Opelt, its present land- 
lord, became its first landlord and conducted it until 1881, when it 
was purchased by J. S. Mclntire, who managed it for a short time, 
and it passed into the hands of Capt. Wm. Enscy, who controlled it 
about three years. It then was without a landlord for about three 
months, when Mr. Joseph Opelt, on March 15, 1886, again became 
its lessee and landlord, and so continues to the present time. He has 
always had a large and profitable business. The house is fitted up 
with modern improvements and has an easy capacity of about 250 
guests. Mr. Stanley C. Wicks is the efficient chief clerk of this ex- 
cellent hotel. It is now owned by W. H. Atwood, of Kinderhook, 
N. Y., the son of the builder. 











The next large hotel built in Lincoln was the Windsor, at first 
called the " Gorham House," located at the southeast corner of Eleventh 
and Q, streets. This hotel was erected by Mr. T. F. Barnes, in 1884, 
and was opened January 5, 1885, by Gorham & Brown, who man- 
aged it about a year, when it passed into the hands of Glass & Montrose, 
who also conducted it about a year. Then it came into the control 
of its presentable managers, Messrs. E. K. Criley & Co., Mr. E. K. 
Criley being in immediate charge. In his hands it has been much 
improved, and its business and capacity extended. The same firm 
controls the "Paddock House" at Beatrice, and other noted hotels in 
the West. The Windsor is equipped with the most improved hotel 
facilities and has a capacity of over 200 guests. It is still owned by 
Mr. T. F. Barnes. Mr. S. J. Whitmore is the chief clerk of the 
Windsor, and is an excellent and capable man in the position. 

The "Lindell Hotel" is an excellent hostelry, located at the north- 
west corner of Thirteenth and M streets. This is a pleasant, quiet, 
home-like place, new and tidy, and managed by Dr. A. L. Hoover and 
his son, Mr. S. C. Hoover, under the firm title of Hoover & Son. It 
is a favorite resort for people who wish excellent accommodations away 
from the noise and disturbance of the business part of the city. The 
site of the Lindell has been a hotel location for twenty years. In 
1869 J. N. Townley opened a boarding-house there, which was man- 
aged by John Douglas for a short time before he took charge of the 
"Douglas House," at Eleventh and P streets. The property passed 
through various vicissitudes, and finally came into the hands of Dr. 
Hoover, in 1885, who removed the old frame to one side for a kitchen 
and erected a brick structure in 1886, which the growing business of 
the house required to be enlarged in 1888. It has a capacity of over 
100 guests, and is furnished with the leading hotel conveniences. It 
discards a bar. 

The "Tremont Hotel," at the southwest corner of P and Eighth 
streets, is an excellent public house, possessed of steam heating, elec- 
tric light, and other facilities of that kind, and its rates are very low 
for the accommodations it offers. It is conducted by Mr. R. W. 
Copeland, and can accommodate about 100 guests. 

The "St. Charles Hotel," on the south side of O street, between 
Seventh and Eighth, is a well-known hostelry of the city, long con- 
ducted by Mrs. Kate Martin, who still owns it. Mr. Jacob Rocke 


is now the landlord and lessee. It enjoys a good trade, and can ac- 
commodate 150 guests. It is managed by Mr. Chris. Rocke, brother 
of Jacob Rocke, the County Treasurer. 

The "Transit," on Twelfth between O and P, Wright & Marcy, 
proprietors, has accommodations for fifty guests. 

The " Washington House," on the southeast corner of M and Ninth, 
and the "Peoria House," on the northwest corner of Q and Ninth, 
are frame hotels, of smaller capacity, with rates at $1.00 per day. The 
"Ideal Hotel/' on the west side of Fourteenth street, between N and 
O, is conducted by W. C. Trott as a hotel and select boarding-house, 
and has a capacity of about 100 guests. There are a number of smaller 
public houses in the city, so that Lincoln can comfortably entertain a 
large number of persons of all tastes as to accommodations and price. 

The regular police force of Lincoln consists of but seventeen men, 
or one to, about each 3,000 inhabitants. Yet few cities in the United 
States are better policed, owing to the high grade of the citizenship in 
the city as well as to the excellent class of men on the force and the 
effective discipline maintained. The criminal record of Lincoln ranks 
with the minimum records of the very best governed cities of equal 
population in the world. The excellence of the police discipline was 
largely effected under the administration of Mayor A. J. Sawyer, by 
Marshal P. H. Cooper, and Captain W. T. B. Ireland, both being of- 
ficials of long experience, the latter being especially efficient in the 
administrative details of the department. Officers A. L. Pound, C. 
M. Green, and J. K. Post, were also men of experience and fine record 
on the old force, and Officers Splain and Kinney also deserve praise 
as guardians of the city. 

In June, 1889, the force was reorganized by Marshal W. W. Car- 
der, who came into office at that time. Marshal Carder has already 
added a number of features of excellence to the department, and the 
force is in a most effective condition for the duties belonging to it. It 
now consists of nine night men and eight day men, including the 
Marshal. The roster of the force is as follows : Marshal — W. W. 
Carder. Night Captain — C. M. Green. Sergeant — F. A. Miller. 
Officers — George F. Sipe, James Malone, A. L. Pound, J. K. Post, 
W.T. B. Ireland, M. F. McWilliams, William Splain, Joseph N. Sny- 
der, W. H. Palmer, Thomas Carnahan, Louis C. Otto, J. E. Kinney, 


John Keane. Special — W. S. Crick. General Police Officers —Health 
Commissioner, A. M. Bartram ; Meat and Live Stock Inspector, W. 
C. Rhode; Driver of the Patrol Wagon, John H. Simpson. 

Hon. Eobert B. Graham, chief executive of the city of Lincoln, is 
one of the best known and most highly respected citizens of Lancaster 
county, a man who has done much to advance the material interests 
of both city and county. That he is of Scotch parentage can readily 


be told at a glance, his sturdy, well knit frame and kindly face pro- 
claiming the nationality of his birth. Mr. Graham was born in New 
York City on the 17th of May, 1842. His early youth only was 
passed in that city, his parents removing to St. Louis when he was 
only five years of age. Here his youth and early manhood were 
passed and here he married. The early education of Mr. Graham 
was obtained at the public schools of St. Louis, where he was in al- 
most constant attendance until he was fifteen years of age. In 1859, 
when in his seventeenth year, the young man entered the Baptist Col- 
lege at Burlington, la., and pursued his studies there uninterrupted 


for two years. But at that time the same circumstances that spoiled 
the college life of so many young men of the land, that changed the 
whole course of life for so many hundreds of the loyal men of the 
North, intervened to cut short his college years ; for although under 
age, he enlisted in the sixty-seventh Illinois infantry at the beginning 
of the war and was soon sent to the front. His army experience only 
lasted for eighteen months, he being discharged at the end of that 
time on account of disability. After his discharge he returned to St. 
Louis, where he lay sick for some time. When he recovered sufficiently 
to be able to work", he entered the steam cracker factory of Thomas 
Miller, as bookkeeper, and after a year was admitted to partnership, 
the firm then being Thomas Miller & Co. The firm then took a 
government contract for furnishing hard tack, but in 1863 the factory 
burned out, and was never rebuilt. From that time until 1867 Mr. 
Graham was engaged with the firm of Tossig, Livingston & Co., 
traveling through the South and Southwest buying wool, etc. 

On the 12th of March, 1868, Mr. Graham was married to Miss 
Mary E. Hilton, of St. Louis, soon after which he moved to Glen- 
wood, la., where he engaged in the milling business, buying an inter- 
est in a steam flouring mill at that place. At the end of a year he 
sold his interest in this mill and turned his face again westward, lo- 
cating in the spring of 1869 in Lancaster county, in the northwest- 
ern part, in what is now Mill precinct. Mr. Graham's coming to 
Lancaster county was upon the suggestion of George Harris, the 
original B. & M. land commissioner, well known to many of the 
pioneers of the early days. From the spring of 1869 Mr. Graham 
has been a continuous resident of the county, and has, during that time, 
been connected closely with its growth and development. In 1870 
Mr. Graham and his brother built a flouring mill in Mill precinct, 
the third mill built in the county, which he operated for a number of 

In 1880 the people of the county concluded that Mr. Graham's 
sphere of usefulness could be profitably enlarged, and hence he was 
elected a member of the House of Representatives of the State Legisla- 
ture, that being the sixteenth session. The result was very satisfactory 
to his constituents, as he displayed much ability in dealing with ques- 
tions of legislation. As a legislator he was careful, watchful, and pru- 
dent, taking broad and conservative views of all questions requiring 


his attention and decision. In 1881 Mr. Graham was elected County 
Treasurer, being reelected in 1883. As county treasurer his duties 
required his presence in Lincoln, and hence his residence here dates 
from his first election to that office. Mr. Graham showed great 
financial ability in dealing with the money matters of the county, and 
is entitled to great credit for his work during his two terms. By 
•bringing to his duties as treasurer the same care, prudence and thor- 
ough business methods that had made his private business a success, 
he succeeded in so improving the finances of the county that all war- 
rants or other evidences of indebtedness, except bridge warrants, were 
paid in cash, something before unknown. This result he accom- 
plished by a close and careful collection of taxes, and a carefully ar- 
ranged system of accounts. The system inaugurated by Mr. Graham 
has been followed by Mr. Roche, the present Treasurer, so well that 
all warrants, including bridge, are now paid on presentation. 

In 1886 Mr. Graham was elected a member of the City Council 
from the Fourth Ward, and was reelected in 1888. The duties of 
this office he discharged most satisfactorily to the people until he re- 
signed, in the spring of 1889, to take the office of Mayor, to which he 
had been elected on April 13, 1889. No man, as member of the City 
Council, has done more hard work for the good of the city — work 
that was always well and honestly done. And his three years' ex- 
perince in that body has enabled him so far to avoid many of the 
mistakes of his predecessors. As chief executive of the city, he is en- 
ergetic, yet conservative, mindful of all interests and classes. He is 
particularly safe and able in guarding the reciprocal relations and 
welfare of the business and working people, to the end that every- 
thing shall work together for the general present prosperity and the 
continued development of the city. Mr. Graham and family belong 
to the most respected social circles of the city. 

Hon. Elmer B. Stephenson, Treasurer for the City of Lincoln, holds 
one of the most responsible offices in the city government. As a rep- 
resentative young man, citizen, and official, a short biographical sketch 
of his life has a very appropriate place in this volume. 

His father, John M. Stephenson sr., was born in Kentucky, on a 
plantation, his father being the owner of slaves. While yet a young 
man the father emigrated to Southern Illinois, and became a pioneer 



farmer near Mount Vernon. When the war came on he enlisted in 
the Seventh Illinois Cavalry, though a positive Democrat in politics. 
His son, John Stephenson jr., joined the same company, though a 
mere stripling, and both served during the great conflict with honor 
to themselves. John Stephenson jr. was daring to the point of auda- 
city, and on one occasion while on a foraging expedition, he captured 
three rebel soldiers single handed, although his gun was so out of repair 
as to be useless. Later on he was himself seized while out foraging, and 


lay in Libby prison until reduced to a mere skeleton from disease and 
starvation. He finally escaped through a tunnel, and reached the 
Union lines, almost dead with sickness and exhaustion. The father 
of the Treasurer was a friend and admirer of John A. Logan, and was 
acquainted with Abraham Lincoln, who practiced law before the war 
in Mr. Stephenson's county. 

Before marriage the mother of the Treasurer was a Miss Esther 
Melcher. She was born in Maine, and her mother was a cousin of S. 
F. B. Morse, the great electrician. When young she removed with her 


parents to Mt. Vernon, Illinois, and there grew up from childhood 
with John M. Stephenson sr. In her young womanhood she was a 
successful school teacher, and her characteristics are those of persistent 
industry, courage, and love of learning and progress. In political 
sentiment she was always a Republican. Her brother, Josiah Mel- 
cher, is a prominent minister in Bloomington, Illinois, who has writ- 
ten several works on theology. 

Elmer B. Stephenson, the Treasurer, was the third son and child, 
and was born at Troy Grove, La Salle county, Illinois, on December 
7, 1858. "When a child his father's family removed to a farm near 
Troy Grove, where he spent his boyhood life. His occupation was 
that of attending the district school in winter, as soon as old enough, 
and working on the farm in the summer season. And while a farmer 
he performed many a month of hard work, doing the labor of a full 
hand in harvest field, corn gathering, or elsewhere, from the age of 
fifteen to eighteen. 

When eighteen years of age he entered the office of Dr. W. G. 
Houtz, with the intention of studying medicine, and while there gave 
the subject some investigation, and also devoted some time to the im- 
provement of his education. When twenty-one years of age he made 
a year's tour of the Southern States, exploring as far south as Texas. 
Upon returning he found that his old friend Dr. Houtz had removed 
to Lincoln, Nebraska, and upon the doctor's urgent invitation, Mr- 
Stephenson followed him to Lincoln, in 1880. 

Not having the means with which to pursue a professional career, 
and finding it difficult to secure remunerative employment, his first 
three years were spent in incongenial labor at low wages. To add to 
his discouragement, if his natural unflagging resolution had allowed 
him to get discouraged, the end of the first and second year each found 
him prostrated with severe illness. Having succeeded in saving a little 
money during the third year, he was enabled to unite with Mr. D. W. 
Moseley in the real estate business in 1883, under the firm style of 
Moseley & Stephenson. 

But wealth did not rush in to overwhelm the firm immediately, and 
the first year was a hard contest to make expenses. But 1885 was a 
year of high-tide prosperity to Lincoln, and Moseley & Stephenson, 
having laid a careful foundation, were rewarded with a successful bus- 
iness. This continued during 1886, and they were able to close up 


the year's work with the balance sheet decidedly in their favor. 
While together Messrs. Moseley & Stephenson placed upon the mar- 
ket, for a syndicate, the lots of both Belmont and Riverside additions 
to the city of Lincoln. 

The following year, in 1887, Mr. Stephenson severed his business 
connection with Mr. Moseley and entered into a partnership with Mr. 
Whitney J. Marshall for the transaction of the real estate business. 
This association was continued with profit to both members until Mr. 
Stephenson -was elected to the office of City Treasurer in April last, 
having been nominated to that over several strong competitors. He 
was elected by a majority of about 1,300. Mr. Marshall, his partner, 
was fortunate also, having been appointed a member of the Board of 
Public Works by Mayor Graham, who was elected on the same ticket 
with Mr. Stephenson. 

The success of Mr. Stephenson has not been due to favoritism nor 
the influence of powerful friends, nor to accident. It has been accom- 
plished in the face of many discouragements, and a man of less per- 
sistent determination would have failed. Hard work, courage, and 
good management, have won for Mr. Stephenson a comfortable fortune 
.and an honorable position, which he now occupies with prudence and 

Hon. G. M. Lambei'tson, City Attorney for the city of Lincoln, is 
a leading attorney of this city, and a gentleman of State-wide reputa- 

His father was Samuel Lambertson, who was born in Pennsylvania 
in the year 1815. Though not an educated man, he is a lover of books, 
learning, and progress, and has never neglected any opportunity to 
secure additional knowledge or advance the education of his family. 
Early in life he was apprenticed to the tailor's trade, and having 
learned the art thoroughly, he opened a merchant-tailoring house at 
Franklin, Indiana. He followed this occupation most of the time 
for fifty years, and accumulated a little fortune at it. He never held 
any political office, but was at one time a Knight Templar in the 
Masonic fraternity, and has for many years been a member and officer 
in the Baptist church. He was naturally a patriot. In politics he 
was first a Whig, when the Whigs were the best party. Then he be- 
came an Abolitionist ; then went into the ranks of the Republican 



party. When the war began he was early in the field as a staunch 
defender of the Union. He promptly organized Company F of the 
Seventh Indiana Infantry, with the opening of hostilities, and became 
its captain. During the first two years of service, he participated in 
eighteen important battles, including those of Antietam and the second 
Bull Run. At the close of his second year he returned to his home 
county to encourage enlistments, and succeeded in raising a regiment 
of thirteen companies, which were called the "Home Guards." These 


he equipped, and then was elected Colonel of the regiment. The 
"Home Guards" were immediately called into service by Governor 
Morton to repel the invasion of Indiana by John Morgan, which the 
guards aided to thoroughly accomplish. 

He now resides with his daughter, Mrs. G. H. Elgin, at Southport, 
Indiana, and is enjoying the well-earned profits of a busy early life. 

The mother of Mr. G. M. Lambertson was born in Kentucky, in 
1818, and was the daughter of a Baptist minister, who preached in 
Kentucky and Indiana, named Lewis Morgan. She was a woman of 
energy, courage, and positive thought, and had power to influence those 


with whom she came in contact. She was devoted to works of char- 
ity, religion, and the elevation of her fellow man. Her death occurred 
in 1877, at the age of sixty years. Her children were G. M. Lam- 
bertson, Mrs. G. H. Elgin, now of Logansport, Indiana, now aged 
thirty-seven; Mrs. U. M. Chaille, living at Indianapolis, aged thirty- 
five; Mrs. I. B. Lavelle, of Louisville, Ky., aged thirty-three; and 
Dr. O. F. Lambertson, of Lincoln. 

Genio Madison Lambertson was born at Frankfort, Indiana, May 
19, 1850. He began his education in the public schools of his State, 
and later became a student in the Baptist college at Franklin, Indi- 
ana. He then attended Wabash University, at Crawfordsville, Ind., 
for six months, and then entered Chicago University, from whence 
he graduated, in 1872. 

He then studied law with Messrs. Overstreet & Hunter, leading 
attorneys of Franklin, Indiana, and having carefully fitted himself 
for a legal career, he selected Lincoln for his future home, and located 
here June 1, 1874. 

He began his life work as a clerk in the law office of Lamb & Bill- 
ingsley, and later became a member of that firm. In December, 1878, 
Mr. Lambertson was appointed United States District Attorney for 
the District of Nebraska, by President Rutherford B. Hayes, and con- 
tinued in that position for eight years, with high credit to himself. 
In this position he made a State-wide reputation. At the close of his 
second term he was tendered a temporary reappointment by President 
Cleveland, but this he declined. 

From the expiration of his second term, in February, 1889, he has 
been steadily engaged in the practice of his profession in this city. 
He now ranks among the most able and successful attorneys of Lincoln. 
Among his most recent important achievements was the procurement of 
a writ of habeas corpus from the Supreme Court of the United States 
for the liberation of the Councilmen from the jail at Omaha, wherein 
they were incarcerated by order of Judge Brewer, of the United States 
Circuit Court, for alleged contempt. Mr. Lambertson also repre- 
sented the city before the Inter-State Commerce Commission, in its. 
suit to require the Union Pacific railroad to deliver shipments from 
San Francisco at Lincoln as cheaply as at Omaha, when the merchan- 
dise passed through Lincoln in reaching Omaha, and pro rata when 
shipped otherwise. The Commission sustained the proposition ad- 


vanced by Mr. Lambertson and the city secured the relief demanded. 
He was appointed City Attorney in 1888, and Mayor Graham reap- 
pointed him to the same office in the spring of 1889. In this position 
the business men of the city consider him a prudent and safe adviser. 

Mr. Lambertson was married on June 10, 1880, to Miss Jane Gun- 
dry, daughter of Mr. Joseph Gundry, a prominent capitalist of Min- 
-eral Point, Wis. She Was born at Mineral Point, Wis., August 29, 
1855, and was educated at Kemper Hall, Kenosha, Wis. Mr. and 
Mrs. Lambertson rank justly among the most respected people in 
the best social circles of the city. Their children are Margery Eliz- 
abeth, born August 23, 1881, and Nancy Perry, born August 26, 1883. 

Mr. Lambertson is a prominent and respected member of the Bap- 
tist Church in this city, and he is ever ready to contribute to the 
progress of the city and welfare of mankind by both voice and deed. 



Lincoln's Railroads — When Built and the Bonds Voted Them — The 
Territory Into Which They Penetrate — The Commercial Advan- 
tage Given Lincoln by Her Railroad Lines — Her Telegraph and 
Express Systems. 

As a railroad center all must concede that Lincoln stands at the 
head among Western cities. Her great lines of road reach out in 
every direction, controlling for her the trade of a territory vast in ex- 
tent, unlimited in resources, and wonderful in its possibilities. The 
showing which can be made demonstrates conclusively that Lincoln is 
the heart of the most complete system of railroads over which com- 
merce passes to and from any trans-Mississippi city, and the best dis- 
tributing point in the western half of the United States. That such 
is the fact makes it of interest to consider in detail the lines of road 
over which our commerce passes, when they were built, how they 
came to be built, the inducements offered them to come, and the other 
facts in connection therewith which suggest themselves to the inquir- 
ing mind. 

First, let attention be called to Lincoln's Eastern connections. Three 
great trunk lines from the East operate their own tracks into the city : 
the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy, the Fremont, Elkhorn and Mis- 
souri Valley, (Northwestern,) and the Missouri Pacific. Lincoln is- 
the terminus of the Missouri Pacific's northwestern line, which gives 
the city an outlet direct to the Gulf and the Atlantic. In addition to> 
these the Omaha & Republican Valley branch of the Union Pacific 
is virtually an extension of the Rock Island and Milwaukee roads, 
and it may be considered a certainty that the Rock Island will come 
into Lincoln soon over its own track. Thus it will be seen that this 
is virtually the terminal distributing point for seven great railroads. 
There is no distributing point west of Lincoln in all the vast region 
that lies between the Missouri and the Rocky mountains, and Lincoln 
and the cities on the Missouri reach too easily into the territory of 
Denver on the west to leave a field for the growth of any new city- 
of importance in the intervening territory. 


Prior to 1869 the sound of the locomotive engine was unheard on 
the prairies of Lancaster, nor had its shrill notes echoed through the 
streets of Lincoln. But at that time a change was accomplished. 
The Legislature of 1869 started the building of four roads by appro- 
priating 2,000 acres of land to each mile of road constructed in the 
State within two years. These four roads started from points on the 
Missouri river and headed for Lincoln. The first was the Burlington 
& Missouri River Railroad in Nebraska, which started from Platts- 
mouth ; the second, the Atchison & Nebraska, from Atchison ; the 
third, the Midland Pacific, from Nebraska City, and the fourth, the 
Omaha & Southwestern, from Omaha. To-day these all belong to 
the same system ; but they started as competitors, and the race was to 
get for each as much as possible of the 250 miles that would exhaust 
the 500,000 acre appropriation. 

The B. & M. had a further inducement to come in the shape of 
bonds voted by the county to the amount of $50,000. 

Then the Atchison & Nebraska was voted county bonds to the ex- 
tent of $120,000, and the Midland Pacific was tempted by a bonus 
of $150,000. 

The Midland Pacific gave promise, in consideration of so large a 
bonus, to locate large car shops in Lincoln, but the promise was never 
carried out. The road was, however, extended to York, and the 
$150,000 has proved to be a good investment. 

"When these lines had been completed into the city from the east and 
southeast, and the B. & M. had been extended west to Kearney, the 
people began to realize that the city was already a prominent railroad 
center, and could be made the hub of the State by a continuation of 
the efforts to attract new roads. Great enterprise was shown in this di- 
rection, and the reward came in due season. For several years hard 
times and poor crops interfered with railroad building seriously, and 
no change was made in the map until 1879. In that year the city 
gave $25,000 in bonds to aid the Lincoln & Northwestern in starting- 
its line to Columbus, and when that road was under way the Union 
Pacific retaliated by sending a branch of its own down from Valpa- 
raiso, and extending it to Beatrice a few years later. An extra in- 
ducement in the shape of a bonus was given by the city for the 
"Valparaiso line. 

When the revival of business and restoration of confidence came, 


between 1876 and 1878, the B. & M. began a movement that made 
it the greatest system in the State. The Nebraska railway was leased, 
and important extensions were projected. Among the first was a line 
from Hastings to the Kepublican Valley, which in time developed 
into a great through road to Denver. 

The Lincoln & Northwestern, a northern branch of the A. & N., 
was built from Lincoln to Columbus, in 1879, and in the following 
year the B. & M. secured possession of the entire property. This 
was not regarded as favorable to the city at that time, but later events 
have shown that it considerably increased the importance of Lincoln, 
considered from a railway standpoint. The city became the hub of 
the B. & M. system, six lines belonging to that company running out 
in all directions. The operating head-quarters were located here, and 
in time the offices of the general superintendent, the superintendent 
of telegraph, the general baggage agent, the chief engineer, the sta- 
tioner, the car accountant, and other officers, whose duties extend over 
the entire B. & M. system, were removed from Omaha and Platts- 
omuth and permanently located in the fine building erected in 1880 
for a passenger depot and head-quarters building. 

After the Union Pacific had been secured and had been extended 
south to Beatrice, and into Kansas, there were still a number of 
roads that the city greatly desired. The roads were willing to be 
courted, and the wooing went on for several years. The Missour 
Pacific was the first to capitulate, building a line from Weeping Wa- 
ter to the city in 1886, after receiving a donation from the city of 
$70,000. But a few months later the Fremont, Elkhorn & Missouri 
Valley was also completed to the city, coming from Fremont, and re- 
ceiving a bonus from the city of $50,000. The effect of the building 
of these roads was tremendous. The following spring saw the great- 
est activity in real estate the city has ever known. 

Lincoln is particularly interested only in that portion of the B. & M. 
system west of the Missouri river. The total length of the various 
B. & M. lines is 2,753 miles, and it is practically traversed by trav- 
eling men representing Lincoln jobbing houses. On only a few miles 
of road southwest of Omaha, a few miles west of Atchison, and a 
short stretch of road east of Denver, are the jobbers of Lincoln un- 
able to do a profitable business. 






The impregnable position held by Lincoln as the distributing center 
of all the vast territoi'y covered by this system, can be better under- 
stood by studying a Burlington map than by reading pages of argu- 
ment. It will show that the main C. B. & Q. line from Chicago 
enters Nebraska at Plattsmouth, twenty miles south of Omaha, comes 
directly to Lincoln and west to Denver. Lincoln is situated almost 
midway between these great cities, being 555 miles from Chicago and 
484 miles from Denver. From this city four additional trunk lines 
extend in as many directions. These, as well as the main line, cover 
a large territory with their branches. Taken in the order of their im- 
portance to the city, the Wyoming branch ought to be considered first. 
This is an extension of the old Midland Pacific from York through 
Aurora and Grand Island, up into Custer county, and on to the new 
city of Alliance, in Box Butte county, 360 miles from Lincoln. From 
Alliance, a branch is now being constructed to the Black Hills, in 
Wyoming, 168 miles to the northwest. Another line will, without 
doubt, be pushed west from Alliance, perhaps to the Yellowstone re- 
gion, and on to a connection with the Northern Pacific. This road 
traverses a very promising region. Between Lincoln and Broken 
Bow the country is famous for its fertility. Between Broken Bow 
and Alliance the live stock industry will always thrive. The Box 
Butte region is excellent for agricultural products again, and Wyom- 
ing is rich in minerals and has inexhaustible beds of coal. Lincoln 
is the terminus of this road. All trains are made up here, and the 
entire line is managed from this city. Two passenger trains each 
way as far as Ravenna and one the remainder of the distance to Al- 
liance, enable the people along the line to communicate easily with 
Lincoln. Freight trains are obliged to make an early start in the 
morning for the northwest, and in the shipment of goods on this line 
the Lincoln jobber is from twenty-four to forty-eight hours ahead of 
all competition. The entire road looks naturally to Lincoln for sup- 

Another long line on which the city finds a ready market, reaches 
to Cheyenne, Wyoming, a distance of 488 miles. The natural course 
of traffic on this line is west to Crete, twenty miles on the main line, 
south to De Witt, thirty miles, thence west through Strang, Edgar, 
Blue Hill, and Holdredge, all junction points for north and south 
branches of the same system, and into Colorado and Wyoming, where 

Lincoln's eailroads, etc. 205 

Cheyenne is the present terminus. The country traversed is excep- 
tionally fertile, and the towns are thriving. Lincoln jobbers sell 
goods on the entire road. 

The main line west ought to be mentioned as the road upon which 
the best cities of the western part of the State are situated. It runs 
to Denver, 484 miles, and the Lincoln jobber is able to cover 400 
miles of it with profit to himself and his customer. 

It will thus be seen that the B. & M. has three great lines running 
west out of Lincoln, which extend the entire distance across the State, 
which are connected by branches at frequent intervals. 

The Burlington is moving toward northern Nebraska. Branches 
have been extended from Central City in three parallel lines, and it is 
probable that the road now in operation from Lincoln to Columbus 
will also be pushed into the North Platte region. 

The southern and southeastern portions of the State are gridironed 
with B. & M. lines, and as all roads once led to Rome, so they now 
lead to Lincoln. Nebraska City, fifty-five miles east, on the Missouri 
river, has the original Midland Pacific branch, which is now connected 
with the "Q," system in Iowa by means of a magnificent steel bridge 
opened in the past year. This gives Lincoln another connection with 

The Atchison & Nebraska became a part of a system connecting 
St Joe, Kansas City, and Atchison, with Lincoln, and also with Den- 
ver, by means of a line through the southern tier of counties of Ne- 
braska, meeting at Oxford with the main line from this city. From 
this southern trunk three important feeders extend into Kansas. 

Some idea of the strategic position of the city with respect to these 
lines may also be gained from a visit to the offices and yards and 
shops. Nearly 100 trains enter the city daily on the various lines, 
but not a single locomotive passes through. The train crews have 
their head-quarters here, and the number of employes stationed here 
to look after the business of the company is nearly 800. The yards 
are the most extensive in the entire system, forty-two miles of track 
being inside of the yard limits. 

The Lincoln passenger depot is the best owned by the system, and 
is the center of more business than any depot occupied by a single 
railroad in the country. Twenty-five passenger trains arrive and de- 
part every day. One-half of the people entering the State come 
through the gateway called Lincoln. 



As a means of showing the business clone here by the B. & 1VL 
system and the increase of business during the past three years, the 
following table will be of service: 












During 1888 the average number of men employed on the B. & M. 
in Lincoln was 793, to whom an average monthly wage of $43,443.50 
was paid. Within the city limits are forty-two miles of track, a very 
large showing for a city of this size. 


This road has usually been considered an Omaha road, and many 
are now firm in the belief that the U. P. would do nothing for Lin- 
coln beyond that which is absolutely necessary to its own welfare ; but 
the facts are that the Union Pacific is becoming a more important 
road to Lincoln every year, and the management is looking toward 
Lincoln with favor as time passes. The road appreciates that Lin- 
coln is an important and growing commercial center, and is willing to 
give all the facilities that are afforded by its immense system of road 
in Nebraska and Kansas. As evidence of this, the treatment given 
Lincoln upon the opening of the K. C. & O. railway may be cited. 
This road was built to occupy vacant territory in the southwest. Ex- 
tensions were made from Fairfield west to Minden, and thence south- 
west to Alma. At the same time the road was built east and north to 
a connection with the O. & R. V. at Stromsburg. During the build- 
ing of this line Lincoln looked upon it with suspicion. It was to be 
a part of the U. P. system, and that, in the minds of many people^ 
meant that its business must go either to Omaha or Kansas City. It 
was something of a surprise, then, when the road upon completion was 
operated as a line running directly out of Lincoln. Through trains 
were put on running from Alma to Lincoln by way of Stromsburg and 
Valparaiso. A car goes to Omaha, but the solid train, with this ex- 
ception is run through to Lincoln. That it increases the railroad busi- 

Lincoln's railroads, etc. 207 

ness of the city not a little is shown by the fact that this train carries, 
according to the statements of the conductors, 150 passengers per day 
on an average. Equal facilities are given for reaching that line with 
freight, and thus it turns out that one of the most important extensions 
made by the Union Pacific for several years is practically a new line 
out of Lincoln. 

This city is situated on the branch connecting the Nebraska and 
Kansas divisions of the road, and is about midway between them- 
Direct connection is made with the roads traversing the northern tier 
of counties of the State of Kansas, and distributing rates are given that 
enable the Lincoln jobber to reach that territory on advantageous 
terms. The Union Pacific system in Nebraska includes the main line 
from Omaha west and a number of important branches. On all of 
those lines the Lincoln merchant has nearly the same facilities and 
rates as are enjoyed by Omaha. In connection with the Rock Island 
the road forms a through line to Chicago, and a good portion of the 
"in" business comes over this road. For "out" business this system 
is very important. The main line and branches traverse nearly forty 
Nebraska counties, nearly all of them favorably located and capable 
of sustaining a large population. Lincoln goods go out over the sys- 
tem to Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and Idaho, according to the state- 
ments made by the jobbers and also by the agents of the company. 
The buiness of the Lincoln offices has increased steadily since the 
road was built into the city. When the Missouri Pacific and the Elk- 
horn were completed to this point, they shared with the older roads 
the Eastern traffic. The Union Pacific was able to give them a liberal 
portion of it and still receive for its own share a much larger tonnage 
in 1886 than in 1885, and a still greater increase in the two following 
years. Although the exact figures of the business cannot be given, 
the local agent, Mr. Miller, gives the information that the increase 
has been most wonderful in the past three years. This city has through 
trains or excellent connections on all the roads of the Union Pacific 
system, which includes over 1,000 miles of road in this State and fully 
as much in Kansas, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, and Idaho, all regu- 
larly traveled by salesmen from Lincoln jobbing houses. 


When Gould built his first Nebraska extension, in 1880, he thought 
that Lincoln was too insignificant a city to reach with his main line, 
and he therefore passed it thirty miles to the east. This was a mis- 
take, as the managers of the road soon discovered. In a few years a 
Lincoln branch was projected, and in 1886 it was completed to this 
city. This line caused not a little of the unparalleled prosperity of the 
last three years. By giving a direct road to St. Louis shorter than the 
Omaha line, it placed the jobbers at an advantage which they under- 
stood and knew how to use. Freights on all southern business are now 
the same as to Omaha, and as the out rate is lower than from Omaha, 
the Lincoln jobber is very well cared for on all goods from the south- 
ern market. The road was also important in opening up the coal 
fields of the south, and in bringing the yellow pine and oak and other 
hard woods of the Missouri and Arkansas to Lincoln. The impor- 
tance of the traffic from that region is great, and it is swelling in vol- 
ume from year to year. The system includes about 7,000 miles of 
road. Kansas City and St. Louis are reached by two daily trains. 
Through cars run from Lincoln to Kansas City, where close connec- 
tions are made for trains to all points on the system, east, west, and 
south. This has become a favorite route for the traveler who does 
not care to pass through Chicago, but would prefer to visit the cities 
further south. The road has also done a large California business in 
Lincoln, taking the traveler over the southern route. 

The Missouri Pacific was wanted by the city because it was thought 
that it would be particularly valuable in bringing in coal and lumber. 
The books of the freight office show that it has filled every promise in 
this regard. Yellow pine, hard wood, coal, and southern products, 
form the bulk of the business. A considerable amount of miscella- 
neous freight is also brought from the east via St. Louis. By com- 
paring the record of the year month by month with that of 1888, it is 
found that the business of the Lincoln freight office has increased fully 
fifty per cent for the entire year. 


Previous to 1886 the wholesale trade of the city of Lincoln was con- 
fined to the south half of the State of Nebraska. The territory occupied 
was known to be by far the most fertile portion, but still it was felt that 

Lincoln's railroads, etc. 209 

much advantage would result from a connection with the entire State. 
A line reaching the Fremont, Elkhorn & Missouri Valley was par- 
ticularly desired, as that would, not only give access to the entire Elk- 
horn system in Nebraska, but the Northwestern system reaching to 
Chicago and to the great lumber districts of the north. At one time 
a company was organized to build the Lincoln & Fremont road, in 
order to secure such a connection, but the enterprise failed. It is, per- 
haps, well that it did, for in a short time the city was able to attract 
a branch of the road. 

Lincoln became a city on the Northwestern lines in 1886, the Elk- 
horn railway building a branch from Fremont. Direct connection 
•was thus obtained with a system of road covering 7,005 miles, 1,252 
miles of this belonging to the Elkhorn, over 1,000 being in Nebraska. 
The main line extends from Blair, on the Missouri river a short dis- 
tance north of Omaha, to Fremont, on the Union Pacific in Dodge 
county. From that point it follows the valley of the Elkhorn river 
toward the northwest, and traverses the entire northern portion of the 
State. At Chadron, in the extreme northwest, a branch diverges to 
tap the Black Hills, while the main line continues until the Wyoming 
coal fields are reached. There are numerous feeders: one connects 
Lincoln with Fremont, another gives Omaha connection with the 
main line. It will be seen that the branch to this city is in general 
•direction a continuation of the main line. It places Lincoln practi- 
•cally the same distance away from the main line as Omaha. The two 
competing cities have the same out rates and the same train service- 
They are on an equality in battling for the business of Northern Ne- 

In the year 1885 the State Legislature of Nebraska passed a law 
adopting the commissioner system of railroad control, a system which 
so far has proved to be the best devised for regulating and controlling 
the operations of railroads. The State Constitution expressly forbids 
the creating of any new State offices, and hence to get around this con- 
stitutional impediment, the law provides that the Board of Commis- 
sioners shall consist of the Secretary of State, Auditor of Public 
Accounts, Attorney General, Treasurer, and Commissioner of Public 
Lands and Buildings, who shall appoint three secretaries, to whom the 
duties of the board are in a large degree delegated. Accordingly the 


present "State Board of Transportation" is composed of Hon. G. L. 
Laws, T. H. Benton, William Leese, J. E. Hill, and John Steen. The 
secretaries are J. R. Gilkeson, L. W. Gilchrist, and W. S. Garber. The 
law of 1885 provided that the Auditor, Secretary of State, and Attor- 
ney General should constitute the board, but the law of 1887 added 
to these officers the Treasurer and Commissioner of Public Lands and 

Taken all together Lincoln's railroad facilities are unsurpassed in 
the West, and the extent to which the business done by her roads has- 
grown is the surest and best indication of the wonderful growth of the 
business of the city. 

As Lincoln is well equipped with railroad lines, so is she with tel- 
egraph lines and express facilities. The Western Union is, of course,, 
here, and has been ever since the coming of the first railroad. The 
Pacific Mutual, or the Postal Telegraph Cable Company, has been in 
operation in the city for nearly four years, and does a thriving busi- 

At the time of the settlement of Lincoln, the express business of all 
the country west of the Missouri river was by common consent of all 
the other express companies, conceded to be the exclusive territory of the 
Wells-Fargo Express Company, with headquarters at San Francisco. 
That company established an office in Lincoln early in 1868, with 
Austin Humphrey as agent. He conducted the business in one corner 
of the Humphrey Brothers' hardware store, in the old frame building 
that stood on the northwest corner of ninth and O streets, on the ground 
now occupied by the five story brick block of the same firm. 

In a few years the increased business requiring the exclusive time 
of an agent, W. H. Wallace, an experienced expressman, was sent here 
to take charge of the business, opening a regular office on ninth street,, 
between O and P, with a new wagon, and Morris Turner as clerk. 

In the summer of 1875 the Union Pacific Railroad Company de- 
cided to do the express business of its line, and as this was the only 
railroad upon which the Wells Fargo operated, and as the territory 
was isolated from the headquarters at San Francisco, and as the busi- 
ness of the company was greatly reduced by the grasshoppers of 1873, 
1874, 1875, the company on July 1, 1875, withdrew from its business, 
and abandoned all its territory east of Ogden. Its place was imme- 
diately filled by the Union Pacific Express Company, on the Union 



Pacific railroad ; the American Express Company, then operating on 
the C. B. & Q. system, taking the B. & M.; the United States Ex- 
press Company, operating on the Chicago, Bock Island & Pacific and 
Kansas City & Council Bluffs, taking the Midland Pacific from Brown- 
ville to Seward, and the A. & N. from Atchison to Lincoln. 

The American Company took the office and fixtures, with the agent 
of the Wells-Fargo Company and the United States Company occu- 
pied a frame building on Tenth street, back of the First National 
Bank, with Mr. DeKay as agent. The frame building referred to 
had done duty for years on the corner now occupied by the First Na- 


tional Bank, as a first class family grocery, kept by Thomas Sewell. 
In November, 1875, J. S. Atwood having extended the Union block 
on street to the alley between Tenth and Eleventh, the American 
Express removed its office to the room next the alley, the agent living 
in rooms above, stairs leading down into the office. 

On July 1, 1876, Mr. Wallace was succeeded by S. W. Chapman, 
who held the agency until December 1, 1880, when he was succeeded 
by S. J. Koberts. During this time the growth of business of the 
companies was more than 300 per cent. In February, 1877, Mr. 
DeKay, agent of the United States Company, was succeeded by J. E. 


E. Millar, who still holds the place ; and the office was moved to the 
Union Block, on O street. In May, 1884, Mr. Roberts, agent of the 
American Company, gave place to J. L. Hopkins, who held the place 
until June, 1887, when he -was succeeded by C. S. Potter, who was in 
turn succeeded in January, 1888, by C. R. Teas, who now occupies 
the position. 

When the Southern Pacific completed its connection with the Santa 
Fe at Deming, N. M., the Wells-Fargo Company began a systematic 
warfare to recapture the West Missouri territory abandoned by it five or 
six years previous. After fighting more than a year with the Adams 
Express Company on the Sante Fe road, the Wells-Fargo Company 
finally succeeded in driving its competitor out of the territory west of 
Kansas City, and then demanded the surrender of Nebraska. The 
American Company retired from the B. & M., but the United States 
Company for several months held on to the A. & N., it and the Wells- 
Fargo running opposition, with two messengers on each train, and 
two agents at each station. At length the United States Company 
grew tired, and the Union Pacific railroad being completed to Lincoln 
in 1880, the United States Company turned its business, with agent, 
office, etc., over to the Pacific Express Company, and retired from all 
the field west of Omaha. Early in 1886 the Missouri Pacific came 
into Lincoln with the Pacific Express Company, which had worked 
on to that line, giving the city direct communication with St. Louis 
and all the lines belonging to that great system. In the fall of the 
same year the Elkhorn line came in with the Wells-Fargo Company 
in connection with the American Express, opening Lincoln to the Black 
Hills, Minneapolis, Chicago, and all the 5,000 miles of the Chicago & 
Northwestern system. 

Lincoln now has in name but two express companies — the Wells- 
Fargo and the Pacific — although really with the advantage of the 
four ; the Wells-Fargo and the American being under the control of 
one company, and the Pacific and United States being consolidated. 



State Institutions — The Penitentiary— Hospital foe the Insane — 
Home foe the Feiendless — The Penitentiaey Revolt — Waeden 
Nobes's Stoey of that Oocueeenoe — Some of the Principal Actors 
— New Incidents of the eevolt — The Explosion at the Asylum. 

At the time the Commissioners had in consideration the selection of 
a site for the location of the capital, Messrs. W. T. Donovan, of Lancas- 
ter, Nebraska, and Hon. G. H. Hilton, of Cincinnati, O., as an in- 
ducement to the Commissioners to select the present site, offered to 
donate to the State forty acres of land, situated about two and one-half 
miles south of the town of Lancaster, upon the express condition that 
said land should be reserved by the Commissioners, and used by the 
State as the site of the proposed penitentiary. Upon the final decision 
locating the seat of government, this grant was accepted and the res- 
ervation and location made accordingly, it being understood that in 
case the State Penitentiary should not be erected upon this site, the 
same should revert to Mr. Hilton, in whom the legal title was then 
vested. This explains why the penitentiary is located in a hollow 
instead of being on the hill either this side or beyond. 

Among the subjects for legislation named by the Governor to be 
submitted tea special session of the Legislature, called to meet in 
Lincoln, in February, 1870, was that of erecting a State Penitentiary, 
and providing for the care and custody of State prisoners. Accord- 
ingly an act to provide for both these objects was passed at that ses- 
sion, and received the approval of the Governor on the 4th day of 
March, 1870. The act provided for the election of three State Pris- 
on Inspectors, who were to take charge of the sale of lands for the 
raising of the necessary funds, and also of the erection of the build- 
ings. A temporary building was immediately erected on the ground 
to accommodate the present necessities, which did duty until the new 
building was completed, and which now stands within the prison walls. 

The three Inspectors, Messrs. W. W. Wilson, W. W. Abbey, and 
F. Templin, set to work immediately upon their selection. W. H. B. 


Stout, then of Washington county, Nebraska, and J. M. Jamison, of 
Des Moines, la., were granted the contract for $312,000. The work, 
as far as the contract extended, was completed in the fall of 1876, but 
since then numerous additions have been made to the capacity of the 
institution. At the opening of the penitentiary the number of pris- 
oners was 18, but at present nearly 400 boarders are accommodated^ 

Henry C. Campbell was the first warden, appointed and he was 
succeeded by William Woodhurst, in 1873, during whose wardenship 
occurred the famous "revolt" among the prisoners, on January 11, 

About four o'clock in the afternoon of that day, Deputy Warden 
C J. Nobes stood with his hand upon the latch of the door that 
gave admission to the old stable which was then used as a shop 
for the convict stone-cutters. The window panes near by were cov- 
ered with frost. Had they been clear, so that he might have seen into 
the shop, or had he seen the eyes that peered out at him through 
the little holes that had been scraped through the frost, he would 
not have entered. But no suspicion of anything wrong had entered 
his mind, and he opened the door quickly and stepped in. If his 
pulse did not beat a trifle quicker as he did so, his must have been 
an extraordinarily imperturbable nature. As he closed the door there 
stepped quickly from behind it twelve men whom he recognized by a 
hasty and comprehensive glance as the most desperate convicts in the 
prison. Wm. McWaters, who was afterward killed by a guard while 
attempting to incite a revolt, stood immediately in front of Mr. Nobes, 
with the muzzle of a revolver which he had taken from the guard 
almost touching the warden's face. Quin Bohanan, afterward a 
murderer, stood near by with a pick raised over the warden's head. 
Grouped around them, armed with stone-hammers, which their venge- 
ful and determined faces showed they would not hesitate to use, were 
Warrel, McKenna, Thompson, Gerry, Elder, and five others, equally 
desperate but not as well known as these leaders. 

A glance was sufficient to reveal everything to the warden. A 
conspiracy to take the prison had been formed, the guards in the 
shop had been overpowered and disarmed, and the conspirators had 
lain in wait for the warden. Their plan had worked admirably, and 
when Mr. Nobes was invited to surrender, he replied, "All right boys ; 
what do you want?" 


*' Take his six-sbooter," said one of the conspirators. 

"He hasn't any," said McWaters. 

Nobes had always conveyed the impression that he did not carry 
a " gun," and his heart gave a throb of hope at McWaters's remark. 
" I began to work my hand around to my hip pocket, kind of careless 
like," he says when he tells of the experience, " but Bohanan soon 
discovered what I was doing, and catching my hand, with the remark, 
* I'll take care of that,' took my revolver from my pocket." 

" Take off your clothes," said McWaters. 

"No, I won't do it," replied Nobes. "You can undress me if you 
want to, but I won't do it myself." 

The conspirators let him have his own way about it, and soon had 
him stripped to his underclothes. It was suggested that they put a 
striped suit on him, but he told them they could not do that, and 
they contented themselves with dressing him in a teamster's clothes. 
It was then suggested that they shave him, but he declared that he 
would not submit to it. It was finally put to a vote, and Elder and 
Jennings voted to shave him, while the other ten voted against it. 
The barber, who had been brought in, was accordingly not called 
upon to exercise his art upon the warden. 

The convicts sat their prisoner in a chair, tying his hands behind 
it, and tying the chair to a post. The guard was disposed of in the 
same way at the other end of the shop. 

McWaters then arrayed himself in the warden's clothes, and blacked 
the sides of his face with the stove poker, so as to represent the war- 
den's whiskers. Taking Nobes's heavy cane, McWaters formed seven 
of the men in line and marched them across the yard to the cell house 
and warden's quarters. The guards on the walls saw the moving 
group, but as they marched in the usual manner, each with his right 
hand on the shoulder of the man in front, and as McWaters was 
dressed in the deputy's suit and carried his cane, nothing was sus- 

The convicts found the doors open, and had no difficulty in making 
Warden Woodhurst and the guards prisoners. They then went to 
the armory, sending one of their number to Nobes for the key to the 
door. He pointed out the key to the dispensary, and declared that it 
was the key to the armory, knowing that if they had to force the 
armory door open they would be likely to alarm the guards on the 


walls, whom, of course, they had had no opportunity of capturing. 
They did have to batter down the door, but the guards had in the- 
meantime been alarmed in quite another manner. 

Four men had been left to watch the deputy warden, the guard 
Cochran, and Mr. C. B. Fox, who were in the stone shop. Besides 
the mutineers, there were about twenty other convicts in the shop, who 
took no part in the revolt, but kept on working. When Mc Waters 
and his seven fellow-conspirators had gone, Nobes called a convict 
named Johnson to him and asked him to untie him. The four con- 
spirators left to guard him told Johnson they would kill him if he 
did. "You are not afraid of these fellows," said Nobes; "you untie 
me and I '11 protect you." Johnson was a fellow of a good deal of 
nerve, but he looked at the four desperate men before him, calculated 
on his chances with Mc Waters and his seven comrades, and said that 
he believed he would not take sides in the trouble either way. 

It has always been supposed that Mr. Nobes succeeded in loosening 
his bonds himself, and that statement has been made in every account 
of the revolt. The truth is that he was released by one of the mu- 
tineers who was left to guard him. This man's name was Warrell. 
Observing that the deputy was struggling to free himself, Warrell 
came back to him with his hammer in hand and said: "You had bet- 
ter keep quiet, or I'll have to tap you with this hammer." 

"You wouldn't hit anybody," replied Nobes. "A man with only 
four years to serve here is a fool to go into a scheme like this. You 
untie me and I '11 get you out of here." 

"I don't dare to. They '11 kill me if I let you go," said Warrell. 

" They needn't know it at all," said Nobes, " and if you let me loose, 
McWaters and his gang will not get back here. You come down here 
and swing your hammer over my head and swear you '11 kill me, and 
then get down behind the chair and untie the straps, while pretending- 
to tighten them. I tell you I will get you out of here if you '11 do it." 

The noise made by the hammers of the men who were working en- 
abled the convict and the imprisoned deputy to carry on this conver- 
sation without being overheard. Warrell followed the deputy's 
directions, and after threatening to brain him with the hammer, got 
down behind him, and while apparently tightening his bonds, loos- 
ened them. The other convicts were in front of the deputy, and could 
not see what Warrell was doing. But the deputy's feet were also tied 


and there was no way of loosening them without immediate detec- 
tion. Fortunately, as Warrell rose and moved away, two shots were 
fired at the cell-house. Two of the mutineers went to the window, 
and, scratching away the frost, pressed their faces close to the win- 
dow. Another one, Edwards, who stood in the door, was also watch- 
ing the cell-house. All of them had forgotten their prisoner for the 
moment. It was a valuable moment, and Nobes made the most of it. 
His hands were free, and he soon succeeded in untying his feet. Ly- 
ing near him was a hoe. As he sprang up and seized this, Edwards, 
who stood in the door, saw him and gave the alarm ; but it was too 
late. The deputy swung the hoe into the air and knocking Edwards, 
crowbar and all, over a pile of stone, escaped from the shop and ran 
across the yard to the stable. Getting out of range of the convicts' 
guns, he called to a guard to throw him a six-shooter, and taking this 
in hand, he went back to the stone shop. Arrived here, he made 
Thompson, one of the mutineers, untie the guard, and the two got 
outside the walls. 

There was a board wall at the southwest corner of the yard, and the 
plan of the mutineers was to dress themselves in citizens' clothes, pro- 
cured from the warden and guards, secure arms from the armory, kill 
the guard at the southwest turret, and escape at nightfall. The two 
shots which attracted the attention of the conspirators left to guard 
the deputy, and which gave him the opportunity to escape, were fired 
at the guard in this turret. His name was Julius Grosjean. The first 
shot cut his vest and the second wounded him slightly in the leg. 

It took the deputy warden but a short time, when he had regained 
his liberty, to get the guards together and dispose of them to the best 
advantage. They were stationed at knot-holes and other improvised 
port-holes where they could command the yard, and were instructed 
to shoot the first man who came into the yard with a gun. Innings, 
one of the mutineers, appeared at the kitchen window with a gun, and 
the deputy himself drew a bead on him and fired. The man. disap- 
peared. After the surrender Nobes learned that he had gone up stairs 
and surrendered to the warden. A bullet-hole in the casement and a 
scratch on Innings's neck gave evidence of the accuracy of the deputy's 

It was but a short time after the revolt was discovered by the guards 
on the walls until the report had reached the city, and citizens with 


arms began to arrive. The Governor was also promptly notified, and 
secured an almost immediate order for the movement of the 23d U. 
S. infantry from Omaha to the scene of the revolt. "The citizens had 
nerve enough," says Mr. Nobes, "but they were not used to discipline 
and you could not count on them. You might station a man at a cer- 
tain point and in five minutes find that he had gone somewhere else. 
I tell you I felt a good deal better when I heard the measured tramp 
of the regulars, and the orders of the offiers which I knew would be 
obeyed to the letter." 

The company of regulars under Major Randall arrived about one 
o'clock in the morning, and at once proceeded to throw a line of guards 
about the walls. The warden and his wife, and two guards, in the 
meantime, were the prisoners of the mutineers. The latter made one 
or two experiments in the way of going into the yard, but a fusilade 
from the guards convinced them that such experiments were far from 
safe. They discussed many plans during the night, which were over- 
heard by the imprisoned guards and the warden and his wife. One 
plan was to go out to the gates with the imprisoned guards in front 
of them, and another was to secure still more certain immunity from 
being shot by forcing Mrs. Woodhurst out ahead of them. These 
plans were abandoned, however, as impracticable, and they gradually 
lost their courage and hope as the slow hours of the night wore away. 

About six o'clock in the morning Mrs. Woodhurst appeared at the 
southwest window of the chapel, much to the relief of her husband 
and sons, (who were separated from her during the eventful night,) as 
well as her many friends among the citizens before the walls. She 
stated that she thought the mutineers could be persuaded to surrender 
to her. The troops were making preparations to enter the yard and 
storm the building occupied by the mutineers, but before they started 
the convicts agreed to surrender to Mrs. Woodhurst, stipulating only 
that they should receive no excessive punishment. 

The conduct of Mrs. Woodhurst through all that trying experience 
is spoken of with the highest praise. When she was allowed by the 
convicts to go to her own room and stay there, she made her way to 
another room whence she was able to alarm the guards on the walls, 
and thus prevent them from coming to the house, where they would 
have been captured. Her behavior was marked by the utmost in- 
trepidity and presence of mind throughout the entire night. At one 


time she secured the arms of the mutineers, hid them in her wardrobe, 
and concealed their ammunition in a bucket of water. She gave them 
back their arms, however, when they began to batter down the door 
of the wardrobe where she hdd concealed them. 

Deputy warden Nobes kept the promise which he made to Warrell, 
the convict who untied him when he was a prisoner in the stone shop. 
On April 5, 1 875, Governor Garber granted Warrell a full pardon, and 
the deputy had the pleasure of reciprocating the favor done him at a 
time when he needed it desperately, by opening the prison gates and 
letting the convict who had saved him step out into the world a free 

Mc Waters was a restless, irrepressible character, and, not discour- 
aged by the failure of this revolt, set immediately to work planning 
another. The plan for this one was discovered through the dropping 
of a note, which one of the conspirators had written to another. The 
attempt was to be made on the 26th day of May. Kolkow, the 
keeper of the wash-house, was to be killed. The deputy warden was 
then to be disposed of, and a rush for liberty made. When the 26th 
of May came the convicts were kept in the main building all after- 
noon. The next day they were marched out, but the guards were 
under special instructions to keep a close lookout, and to shoot any 
convict who made any suspicious demonstration. A short time after 
the convicts had gone to work, John Geary was granted leave to go 
to the privy. Just as he was returning Mc Waters held up his hand, 
and was given permission to go. He met Geary just under the guard's 
cage, and touching him, said something. The guard did not hear 
what it was, but the fact that anything was said was warning that 
something was wrong, and he was at once upon the alert. When 
Mc Waters stooped and picked up a stone and made a motion to throw 
it at the guard, the latter fired. Mc Waters stood upright a moment, 
without making any outcry, and then walked forward about twenty 
feet, where he was caught by Cochran, the overseer. The blood was 
gushing from the carotid artery, and within a few seconds from the 
time he staggered into the overseer's arms, he died. The ball from 
Hugh Blaney's gun had passed through McWaters's left jaw, entered 
the neck, severed the carotid artery, passed down through his body, 
and came out just above the left kidney. 

After firing upon Mc Waters, the guard immediately re-cocked his 


gun, and ordered Geary back to work. He then gave the alarm by 
ringing the bell in the yard, and those in the warden's and deputy's 
rooms. The alarm brought out the warden and deputy, and after the 
convicts had been allowed to work long enough for the excitement to 
subside somewhat, they were marched into the main building and an 
extra guard set over them. 

Mc Waters was not the only one of the mutineers who was a figure 
in a subsequent tragedy. Quin Bohanan's term expired October 13, 
1877.' On the 19th of February, 1882, in a quarrel with James Cook, 
at Waverly, over the spelling of the word "pedlar," he killed Cook. 
He was tried and sentenced to the penitentiary for life, but after serv- 
ing a short part of his time, he succeeded in getting a new trial. The 
result was far from being what he expected, for the jury brought 
in a verdict of murder in the first degree, and he was sentenced to be 

He was confined in the Otoe county jail, awaiting some further ju- 
dicial proceedings, his case having been appealed to the United States 
Supreme Court; but on the 22d day of June, 1887, he escaped, and 
has since succeeded in eluding the officers, spurred on as they are by 
a heavy reward. 

Bohanan was of that peculiar temperament that either could not 
appreciate disgrace and the apparent hopelessness of his situation, or, 
appreciating them, could not be depressed by them. He seemed never 
to allow the idea of escape to leave his mind. An incident occurred 
during his second trial which Mr. Nobes never made public, because 
Bohanan's attorneys feared it might prejudice his case. When Nobes 
took Bohanan into the buggy to bring him to the city for trial, he 
fastened his handcuffs to an iron in the buggy seat. When about 
half way to town he suddenly discovered that Bohanan had taken off 
the nut which held the iron, and was almost free. As the team was 
a very spirited one, the situation was somewhat critical. Looking 
Bohanan sternly in the eye, he ordered him to put the nut back, which 
he did. 

" Now," said Nobes, " if you make the slightest move toward get- 
ting away, I '11 kill you." 

"For God's sake, Mr. Nobes, don't shoot me!" exclaimed Bohanan, 
who saw that Nobes was a good deal agitated, and evidently feared 
that he might conclude to act as executioner without further delay. 


"Oh, I won't shoot you," replied the deputy; "I will just cut 
your heart out." 

Bohanan probably believed it, for he made no further attempt at 

Elder, who was also one of the mutineers, went to Kansas City 
after his term expired. " I was sitting in a hotel at Kansas City one 
day," says Mr. Nobes, " when somebody tapped me on the shoulder 
and spoke to me. I looked up, and before me stood Elder, arrayed 
in the height of fashion and sporting a pair of eye-glasses and a shiny 
silk hat. He asked me if I had been to breakfast. I told him that 
I had, and he said he would see me after he had breakfasted. When 
lie came out he asked me to take a walk with him. He took me down 
town to a good office building, and following him up stairs, I found 
myself in an elegantly-furnished room, the windows of which pro- 
claimed that it belonged to 'Dr. Elder.' He was working a patent- 
medicine fake, and was making plenty of money and flying high. He 
asked me not to give him away, and as I had no particular reason for 
doing so, I left him to practice his improved style of villainy undis- 

In March, 1875, L. F. Wyman was made warden, and he served 
until October, 1877, when he was succeeded by Henry C. Dawson, 
who acted in that capacity until September 7, 1880. 

C. J. Nobes was the next warden, and under his management, which 
continued for six and one-half years, affairs moved very smoothly ; 
the discipline of the prison was greatly improved and its sanitary con- 
dition carefully looked after. 

Mr. Nobes was succeeded in 1887 by R. W. Hyers, who held the 
office until January 1, 1889, when he resigned, his place being filled 
by the appointment of Dan Hopkins, who is the present warden. 
Mr. Hopkins seems to be especially fitted for the place he holds, as is 
evidenced by the continued good order prevalent at the penitentiary 
and by the respect with which he is treated and the esteem in which 
he is held by the prisoners. Mr. Hopkins is a man of just a little 
over forty-three years of age, having been born August 30, 1846, in 
Rushford, Alleghaney county, N. Y. His parents both came from 
Vermont. Mr. Hopkins's early life was passed quietly, without spe- 
cial incident worthy of note. He lived in Alleghaney county until 
he was twelve years old, when his parents moved to Cataraugus county, 


N. Y., where he finally resided until 1871, or until Dan, as he is fa- 
miliarly called, was twenty-five. On September 23, 1863, Mr. Hop- 
kins being then under the age required, enlisted in the service of his 
country, to help fight her battles and throttle the treason that seemed 
for a time to have a death grip on the nation's throat. He enlisted in 
the Ninth New York Cavalry, Col. Nicholls commanding. This reg- 
iment was assigned to duty in the Shenandoah valley, in the Second 
Brigade of the Cavalry Corps of the First Division, under command of 
Gen. Merritt. Gen. Deven was in command of the division, the offi- 
cer of Company I, Hopkins's company, being Capt. Putnam. Mr. 
Hopkins prides himself upon the fact that he is one of the very few re- 
maining high privates who now survive the years and ravages of dis- 
ease. When he went into the service he weighed only ninety pounds, 
and, of course, being only seventeen, had to stretch the truth one year 
to be allowed to enlist ; but like a good many other boys whose patri- 
otism rose with danger, this little prevarication was counted as nothing. 
What he wanted was to get a shot at a traitor, and the end justified 
the means. 

Mr. Hopkins's battle experiences are those of every soldier who 
fought and skirmished with the enemy up and down the beautiful 
Shenandoah valley from 1863 to 1865. If these experiences were 
rightly written they would make a volume of rare interest — war, 
tragedy, love, adventure, defeat, and victory, all mixed together in one 
grand plot. He was, of course, in Sheridan's command, but was not 
permitted to be present at Lee's surrender, as his horse had been con- 
demned and he, together with hundreds of others, had been ordered 
back to Remount camp, below Harper's Ferry, as a guard for prison- 
ers taken during the campaign, and to get a fresh mount. After the 
remount he went back to the valley, where his division did patrol 
duty to the end of the war. He was mustered out of the service at 
Winchester, on June 1, 1865, having staid in the service without a 
wound or accident until the close of the war. 

Returning home at the close of the war, he engaged in farming and 
stock buying until March 16, 1871, when he married, and with his 
bride started for the AYest. Mrs. Hopkins's maiden name was Mor- 
rill — Miss Jennie Morrill — closely connected with the family of 
Senator Morrill, of Vermont, on her father's side, and on her mother's 
side with that of Secretary Seward. Mr. Hopkins proceeded direetly 


to Lone Tree, now Central City, where he took a homestead six miles 
southwest of the village, perfecting his homestead right in the usual 
manner. In August, 1873, during the trying grasshopper times, he 
temporarily abandoned farming, (as did many Nebraska farmers, of 
necessity,) and went to Wyoming in the employ of the Union Pacific 
railway. He remained in the employ of this company, holding a re- 
sponsible position, until December, 1875, when, with his family, he 
went back to New York, where he remained only a year ; but that was 
long enough to give him a disastrous experience in the oil country. 
In December, 1876, he came back to Nebraska, a wiser if not a sad- 
der man. He went on his farm, but only stayed there a short time, 
moving soon into Central City, where he was appointed Deputy Sher- 
iff of Merrick county in 1877, which place he held for two years. In 
1 879 he was elected Sheriff, and again, in 1881, was chosen by the peo- 
ple for the same position. In 1883, on retiring from office, he engaged 
in the implement business in Central City, and continued that two 
years. But at the end of that time he accepted a flattering offer from 
the Great Northwestern Stage Company, and in February, 1886, went 
to Denver, the company's headquarters, as Superintendent of that 
company's lines in Wyoming and Colorado, spending a considerable 
portion of his time traveling over the routes and inspecting the lines. 

Until March 15, 1887, Mr. Hopkins remained with this company, 
when he resigned on information received of his appointment by Gov- 
ernor Thayer as deputy warden. With his family he arrived in 
Lincoln April 1, 1887, and immediately entered upon the discharge 
of his duties. This place he filled in a most satisfactory manner until 
the resignation of Warden Hyers, on January 1,1889, when Mr. Hop- 
kins assumed the duties of warden, on appointment of Gov. Thayer. 
Mr. Hopkins has dispensed with the office of deputy warden, V. U. 
Heiner acting as principal keeper. Elder P. M. Howe is the chaplain. 

The position of warden in the Nebraska penitentiary is a difficult 
one to fill. In fact, the duties of warden of any prison require great 
care, judgment, a knowledge of human nature, firmness, and yet kind- 
ness. It is a trying place, but Mr. Hopkins has shown himself pos- 
sessed of these qualifications in a large degree, and the result is seen in 
the smoothness with which affairs within the walls move. 

Mr. Hopkins's family consists of a wife and one daughter, Miss Inez, 
now in her sixteenth year. 

By the act providing for the sale of the unsold lots and blocks in 


Lincoln, and the erection of the State University, the Commissioners 
were directed to locate, on or near the site of said town, a site for a 
State Lunatic Asylum, and from the proceeds of such sales the sum of 
$50,000 was appropriated and directed to be expended, under the su- 
pervision of the Commissioners, in the erection, upon such plan as they 
should adopt, of the necessary building. Accordingly, a site containing 
about 160 acres, and situated about two miles southwest of the site of the 
old town of Lancaster, was set apart for that purpose ; and after hav- 
ing issued the notices required by law, and having adopted the plan 
of Prof. D. Winchell, an architect from Chicago, the contract for the 
construction of the building was let, on the 15th day of August, 1869, 
to Joseph Ward, also formerly of Chicago, who stipulated for its com- 
pletion on or before the first day of December, 1870, the contract price 
for the work being $128,000. On December 22, 1870, the asylum 
was opened for the reception of patients. A little while before this it 
was set on fire, near the roof, but the flames were extinguished before 
much damage was done. Dr. Larsh, of Nebraska City, was appointed 
the first Superintendent, and had twenty-six patients when he took 
charge. On the night of April 18, 1871, the building was burned to 
the ground. Whether set on fire, or ignited by a defective flue, has 
not been determined. Two or three of the insane persons at the time 
in the building were burned to death. The city of Lincoln made tem- 
porary arrangements to accommodate the patients thus rendered home- 
less, advancing $4,500 for that purpose. This sum was afterward 
repaid by the State. 

The burned asylum building had been insured for $96,000. The 
insurance companies took their option and rebuilt the building, the 
contract price being $71,999.98. William H. Foster, of Des Moines, 
Iowa, was the architect of the second building, and R. D. Silvers the 
contractor for the erection of the main building and one wing. The 
contract called for a facing of limestone ashlar, rough finish, but this 
was changed later on to Carroll county (Missouri) sandstone, with 
rubble-work finish and rustic joints. It was finished on October 2, 

The building was crowded as soon as completed, and the Legisla- 
ture of 1875 appropriated $25,000 for an additional wing, which was 
at once erected, under the supervision of the trustees. Three more 
wings have been added since that time, which, with kitchen, boiler- 
house, and other improvements, have cost in the aggregate $196,618, 


and the plant had cost, on January 1, 1889, as estimated by the Sec- 
retary of State, the sum of $272,413. The asylum is credited with 
additional property valued at $70,668.05. 

On February 5, 1889, one of the boilers in the" boiler-house of the 
asylum exploded, killing; one engineer and two patients, and wrecking 
the boiler-house. The Legislature was then in session, and an inves- 
tigation indicated incompetency in the engineers. An appropriation 
was made at once for rebuilding the boiler-house, and the work has 
been completed. 

The present number of patients is nearly 400, and the average 
weekly expense of their maintenance was $4.66 per capita during 1887 
and the first eleven mouths of 1888. 

The institution is now under the management of Superintendent 
"W. M. Knapp, M.D., with Dr. J. T. Hay as first and Dr. Miss 
Helen B. Odelson as second assistant physician. Mr. J. Dan. Lauer 
is the steward, to whose management is due much of the financial suc- 
cess of the institution, and Mrs. Mary Magoon, the matron. 

The State Legislature, by an act of February 28, 1881, established 
a Home for the Friendless, to be controlled by the Board of Lands 
and Buildings, at or near the town making the largest donation for 
the Home. Lincoln contributed $2,050, and secured the institution, 
and the State expended the $5,000 appropriation in buildings and 
grounds. The Legislature of 1883 appropriated $2,000, that of 1885 
$10,000, and the session of 1887 $11,895.30, making the cost of the 
plant, to date, $28,895.30. The Home has other property valued at 

The Home is supported in part by benevolent contributions from 
generous people, and is managed by the Society for the Home for the 
Friendless, a band of women organized about fifteen years ago, and 
since incorporated under the laws of the State and subject to a general 
control of the State Board of Lands and Buildings. This is one of the 
most commendable charities in the State, and the ladies at its head de- 
serve the highest praise for their practical work in the cause of hu- 

The Home now maintains about 100 children, some of them infants 
but a few days old. Good homes with families are found for these 
children as fast as possible. The Home is now under the immediate 
management of Mrs. A. B. Slaughter, Superintendent; Miss Alice 
Huff, Physician; and Mrs. Elizabeth Moore, Matron. 



Lincoln's Educational Institutions— Her Public Schools — Early 
Times — The Wonderful Growth Noticed — The Number or 
School Buildings and Teachers, and the Annual Cost of Con- 
ducting the Work — The Higher Institutions of Learning — 
Other Schools. 

The schools of Nebraska have closely followed the earliest settle- 
ment of the State. This was true of Lancaster, which became Lin- 
coln. In fact, Elder Young's Lancaster Seminary Association came 
to this region for the very purpose of founding a school, and a female 
seminary at that. 

The "Lancaster Colony" laid out "District No. 1" in the latter 
part of 1864, the same year that Lancaster was platted. This dis- 
trict was six miles square. The first board of directors were Jacob 
Dawson, John M. Young, and Milton Langdon. The following year, 
1865, District No. 2 was organized at Yankee Hill, with John Cad- 
man, W. R. Field, and W. T. Donovan, as directors. In this district, 
in the dugout home of John Cadman, not far from where the Insane 
Asylum now is, one of the first schools in this vicinity, and probably 
in the county, was taught, in the winter of 1865-6, by Robert F. 
Thurston, with about fifteen scholars in attendance. Judge A. W. 
Field and his sister, Mrs. J. E. Philpott, four of Cadman's children, 
three of Donovan's, and others, were pupils in this school. It is 
probable that a school was in progress at the same time at Saltillo. 
Probably late in 1866 the Stone Seminary was so far completed in 
Lancaster that it was decided to open a school in one room in this 
building, which occupied the ground on the northeast corner of Ninth 
and P streets, where the State Journal block now stands. The in- 
terior of the building was not finished by any means. In fact, but one 
room was in condition to use, and carpets and other cloths had to be 
hung up to keep the wind out and make the place tenable. There 
was no floor except the ground, and the partitions were merely lathed 
up. Here, however, Mr. H. W. Merrill conducted the first school in 


Lancaster, in the latter part of 1866. The term concluded with an 
"exhibition." About thirty pupils attended this school of twenty- 
three years ago. Early in 1867 Mrs. H. W. Merrill taught a term 
of school in the stone seminary. She was a lady of a good deal of 
culture, being possessed of a good academic education and could sing 
well besides. The directors were anxious to find a teacher, and urged 
Mrs. Merrill to take the school. She said it would be impossible, as 
she had a baby only about a year old. The directors told her to take 
it to school with her, and to this arrangement she finally consented. 
So Mrs. Merrill labored with the youth of Lancaster with a baby in 
her arms part of the time. She lived in one end of the building, and 
John Montieth had a shoe shop in another part. Rooms were scarce in 
those days. During .her term, just after an old-fashioned spelling 
school, the stone seminary caught fire from a misconstructed flue, and 
the woodwork of the building burned to the ground. That was the 
last of the stone seminary as an educational institution. The walls 
stood there until the fall of 1867, when John Cadman rebuilt the 
woodwork and opened the "Cadman House." 

In the fall of 1867, soon after the first sale of lots, the directors of 
the district caused a small stone school house to be erected near the 
northeast corner of Q, and Eleventh streets. In this, during the fall 
of 1867, Mr. George W. Peck taught the first school in the town 
after it became Lincoln. Mr. Peck still resides in the city. His 
average attendance was about thirty-five pupils. In the winter of 
1868-9 school was continued in the stone school house, with Prof. 
James as teacher. The attendance had grown to about sixty- 
five, and the directors then bought the Methodist church, at the 
southwest corner of Q and Tenth streets, and divided the school, and 
instruction was begun on May 5, 1869, in both places, with T. L. 
Catlin teacher in the church. Both schools were well attended. The 
stone school house became a town jail about 1873, and the old Meth- 
odist church continued a school house until the present summer of 
1889, being known first as the South School House, and for years 
past as the "J Street School." It stood near the northeast corner of 
Eighth and J streets, and was removed during the present summer. 

During the spring of 1869, Miss Griswold, afterward Mrs. S. B- 
Galey, taught a select school. In 1870 the schools had grown to 
three, and the following spring the question of bonding the district 


for |50,000 of ten per cent bonds, to build a "high-school building," 
began to be discussed. Finally, on the 17th day of June, 1871, an 
election was held at the "White School House" to vote on the bond 
question. At this election Messrs. C. M. Parker, W. A. Colman, and 
B. W. Ballard, were judges, and 211 voters were out, of which 151 
were for bonding the district and sixty against. We find on the 
polling list of this election such familiar names as R. E. Moore, G. 
M. Parker, R. P. Beecher, Geo. B. Skinner, T. H. Hyde, W. J. Hyatt, 
J. E. Philpott, L. E. Cropsey, H. J. Walsh, John McConnell, P. Way, 
T. P. Quick, Amasa Cobb, D. B. Cropsey, D. L. Peckham, A. 
Humphrey, P. H. Cooper, C. M. Leighton, A. M. Davis, G. Ensign, 
John McManigal, J. H. Ames, and J. P. Hebard. 

On August 19th an election was held to determine the location of 
the proposed $50,000 high-school building. There were three sites 
before the election from which to choose. One was block sixty-three, 
where the high school now is, between streets Fifteenth and Sixteenth, 
and M and N; another was block 155, bounded by F and G and Fif- 
teenth and Sixteenth ; and the third was block 120, bounded by J and 
K and Eleventh and Twelfth. There were 235 votes cast, of which 
185 votes were cast for block sixty-three, thirty-two votes were cast 
for block 155, and eighteen votes for block 120. So block sixty-three 
won the location. The board this year was composed of Philetus 
Peck, Moderator ; S. J. Tuttle, A. L. Palmer, John Lamb, A. L. 
Pound, and W. T. Donovan. Palmer or Tuttle acted as secretary of 
the meetings for several years after this. 

On September 9th the board held a meeting, and " Elder Lamb 
was authorized to answer the Citizens' Bank at Sidney, Ohio, that 
they could have twenty thousand dollars in bonds at 90 cents on the 
dollar." The same meeting records that Mr. Lamb was appointed 
" to procure a strip of breaking for shade trees and to save the build- 
ing from fire." Some of those shade trees can now be seen around 
the high school block, and it would be difficult for a prairie fire to get 
at the building at the present time. Mr. Palmer also records that the 
board ordered a " Webster's Unabridged Dictionary and Lippincott's 
Gazette," probably meaning Gazetteer. 

On December 23, 1871, the board adopted the plans and specifica- 
tions for the new school house offered by Roberts & Boulanger, at a 
cost of $1,300, the architects to superintend the work. On February 


15, 1872, the board decided to advertise for bids on the construction 
of the high-school building, to be completed by September 1, 1872. 
On March 11th the bid of Moore & Krone for doing all the brick r 
stone, iron, and masonry work on the house, was accepted. Also Mr. 
Parcell's bid to do the carpenter work for $12,300 was approved. 
Parcell was of the firm of Parcell & Dehart. The stone, brick work,, 
etc., were to cost $30,760, or the building, finished, $43,060. The 
contractors were to give bond on or before March 18th. On the 1st 
of April, 1872, S. J. Tuttle was reelected to the board and J. M. 
Jamison in place of A. L. Pound, after a hot fight to prevent Jam- 
ison & Stout from getting the school-house contract. 

On June 11, 1872, J. W. Cassell was employed as Superintendent 
of the city schools for the ensuing year, at a salary of $1,400 per year. 
Probably a corps of seven teachers served with him, at "the Stone 
School House," the stone church, at the northwest corner of Twelfth 
and J streets, the "South School House," and the new high-school 
building, during 1872-3. 

On September 26 the board authorized the erection of " a suitable 
number of lightning rods " on the new building. But the carpenters 
working on the structure dragged along, and it was not completed 
until the first of January, 1873. Then, on January 9th, arrangements 
were made by the board to occupy the new school house, and abandon 
the old stone school house near Eleventh and Q. 

From this time the real prosperity of the city schools dates. New 
maps and charts were ordered. The German language was ordered 
taught in the new building, on January 9, 1873. The school had a 
bell, a janitor, and Prof. Leland was employed to teach music at a 
salary of $10 per month. 

On February 6, 1873, we find the board allowing the following bills 

to teachers for one month past : 

Miss E. P. Eockwood $65 00 

Miss Jennie Eoberts 60 00 

MissS. G. Lamb 60 00 

Mrs. A. S. Newcomer 60 00 

Mrs. E. Mollie Powers 55 00 

Miss Hortense D. Street 55 00 

Miss Emma Williams 41 25 

Miss May Bostater 55 00 

In September, 1874, Prof. W. W. W. Jones took charge of the 

Miss Priscilla Nicholson $50 00 

Miss Mary Sessions 50 00 

Alice Eoberts 37 50 

M. A. Whyman 26 25 

Supt. J. W. Cassell 140 00 

Geo. B.Holmes 41 25 

J. Holdegroff 33 75 


schools as superintendent, and occupied that position until about the 
close of the year of 1880, when Prof. S. R. Thompson became superin- 
tendent, with a corps of over twenty teachers. He was followed by 
Prof. J. M. Scott, who held the place until June, 1883., District No. 
1, Lancaster county, had, some time before this, become the School 
District of Lincoln. 

Of late years the schools have made rapid strides in every respect, 
as the subjoined exhibit of facts and figures showing the status of the 
schools of to-day will demonstrate. In brief, the schools of Lincoln 
exhibit superior development for a city so young. A most wonderful 
growth has taken place in the last ten years, and the methods of work 
have kept even pace with the growth in numbers. To Supt. E. T. 
Hartley, who has had charge of the schools for the past seven years, 
is due very much of the splendid condition in which they are to-day. 
Prof. Hartley is a man of wonderful energy, great tact, thorough busi- 
ness methods, and liberal education, and these qualifications, to which 
must be added his great love for the work, make him a man peculiarly 
qualified for the place he holds. 

The number of school buildings has grown to sixteen, with rooms 
for ninety schools, and possessing a seating capacity for 5,000 pupils. 
The total enrollment for the past year was 4,748, of whom 2,375 were 
boys, and 2,373 were girls. It required over eighty teachers to instruct 
these five regiments of pupils. The total amount of money paid out 
for the support of the city public schools for the year ending July 8, 
1889, was $98,451, of which sum $43,175 was disbursed for teachers' 

The elementary schools cover eight years of .work, and have been 
arranged in sixteen grades. All the common-school branches are com- 
pleted in the eight years, including United States history, an eight 
years' course in music and di'awing, temperance hygiene, and four 
years oral instruction in English language preparatory to the syste- 
matic study of grammar. 

The high school curriculum comprises four parallel courses of three 
years each, the English, the Latin, the German, and the Classical. 
These courses include instruction in algebra, book-keeping, geometry, 
botany, human physiology, physical geography, chemistry, physics, 
geology, English composition, word analysis, technical grammar, or- 
thoepy, elocution, history and development of English literature, rhet- 



oric, political economy, civil government, elements of commercial 
law, general history, three years each in Latin, Greek, and German. 
It will be seen that the public schools furnish a good practical educa- 
tion, well rounded out, even if the pupils do not go to college, and if 
they expect to enter a higher institution, they are prepared to do so. 

The work of the High School is arranged in departments, and em- 
ploys nine instructors. Special reference libraries are supplied for the 
departments nf history and English literature, and a working lab- 
oratory in chemistry and physics is provided, enabling pupils to per- 
form their own experiments. The department of physiology is well 
equipped with fine skeletons and a series of plaster and papier-mache 
models. In addition to the general reference library, each department 
has a special library. A feature of the Lincoln schools is a circulat- 
ing library, from which the pupils made 35,510 loans last year, a re- 
markable record considering the other public and private libraries of 
the city. 

The corps of teachers of the city schools for 1888-89 is as follows : 

E. T. Hartley, M. A Superintendent. 

H. S. Bowers Assistant Superintendent. 

J. C. Miller '. Special Instructor in Music. 


S. P. Barrett, M. A., Principal, 

Lawrence Fossler, B.S., 

German and Biology. 
Oeo. B. Frankforter, M.A., 

Chemistry and Physics. 
Marian Kingsley, B. A., 

Rhetoric and English Literature. 
Mary M. Pitcher, M. A., 

Latin and Greek. 
Mina F. Metcalf, M. A., 

General History- 
Mate Treeman, B. S. 

History and Civil Government. 


Louise Adams. 
Mrs. Marie Fielding. 
Ella Kaufman. 
Beth Brenizer. 
Ella Conard. 

Flora A. Beecher. 
Ina Fay Risely. 
Lulu Sumner. 
Mrs. S. N. Franklin. 


G. W. McKinnon, Principal. 

Dora M. Neihardt. 

Mrs. Mary McKinnon. 

Frances Duncombe. 

Helen W. Chapin. 

Clara Pettigrew. 

Eva Lamb. 

Lillian Upham. 

Mrs. Lulu Wilson. 

Susie Hoagland. 


Anna Shuckman, Principal. 

Alia Lantz. 

Lena Smith. 

Mrs. Hattie Musselman. 

Lizzie C. Jones. 



Etta Erb. 

Mrs. Lizzie Gleason. 
Dora Brooks. 
Jennie Cole. 
Ottie Kathbun. 
Jennie Marine. 


Mrs. A. P. Tiffany, Principal. 

Mrs. Jeannie Hard. 

Mrs. Emma R. Cropsey. 

Bertha MeCorkle. 

KateFolsom, (Mrs. Ealston.) 

Seba Dewell. 

Mrs. L. H. Davis. 

Mara L. Byam. 

Alice Todd. 

Sarah Eiley. 

Mrs. Emmeline Tucker. 

Louise Tucker. 


Mrs. Elizabeth Bowen, Principal. 

Mary Stevens. 

Manie Sawyer. 

Mrs. Abbie Chamberlain. 

Edna Scott. 

Emma Smith. 

Jessie Love. 

Mrs. T. E. Hardenburg. (Died July 24, 

S. Alice Lease. 
Gertrude Aitken. 


Cora Hardy, Principal. 

Edith Long. 

Ada Buck. 

Mrs. Anna R. King. 

Lydia Welch. 

Minnie Welch. 

Emma Bing. 

Sallie Cox. 

Lottie Eckhardt. 


Mrs. Emma W. Edwards, Principal. 

Alice Russell. 

Lutie Thomas. 

Nettie Taylor. 

Laura Roberts. 

Medora Smith. 

Alice Cronley. 

Sarah Shea. 

Alice Orr. 


J. Oliver. 
Kate Stoddard. 
Margaret Pryse. 
J. C. Pentzer. 
May Taggart. 
Genia Stillman. 
Orra Reeder. 
Mary Dolan. 
Lizzie Bond. 
Olive Roberts. 

The board of education is composed as follows : 

J. A. Wallingford, 

W. W. W. Jones, 

Vice President 
A. G. Greenlee, 


Miss Phoebe Elliott. 
Lewis Gregory. 
W. J. Marshall. 
Sam D. Cox. 
W. A. Lindley. 
O. E. Goodell. 

The instruction for 1889-90 will be under the direction of the fol- 
lowing officials : 

E. T. Hartley Superintendent. 

Burr Lewis Principal of High ScJiooL 



Mrs. A. P. Tiffany, Capitol. 
Miss Anna Sbuokman, Q Street. 
Mrs. Elizabeth Bowen, C Street. 
Mrs. Emma W. Edwards, Elliott. 
Miss Cora Hardy, Park. 
Miss Alice Kussell, T Street. 

Mrs. Jeanie Hard, Cherry Street. 
Miss Jennie Marine, 

Special Instructor in Vocal Music. 
Miss Lydia Welsh, 

Special Instructor in Penmanship and 

A notable feature of the high school is a series of lectures on sub- 
jects directly or indirectly connected with the course of study, given 
by persons prominent in educational circles, and occurring once or 
twice per week throughout the year. Among the lecturers have been 
the Governor of Nebraska, and other State officers, the Chancellor 
and other members of the faculty of the State University, lawyers, 
ministers and physicians of Lincoln, and the instructors of the high 


The high standard of general intelligence which has made Ne- 
braska able to boast of having a less percentage of illiteracy among her 
citizens than any other State in the Union, is as old as the settlement 
of the Territory. The founding of the present State University came 
through a process of evolution. To found a university seems to have 
been the highest ambition of many of Nebraska's earliest politicians, 
and to become the home of a great educational institution, the goal 
for which nearly all of her earliest towns strove earnestly and well. 

In the first session of the Legislature charters were granted to Ne- 
braska University, located at Fontanelle ; Simpson University, located 
at Omaha city, and the Nebraska City Collegiate and Preparatory 
Institute, located at Nebraska City. In the next session Simpson 
University asked for a renewal of its charter, and charters were 
granted to the Nemaha University, at Archer ; Washington College, 
at Cuming City; the Plattsmouth Preparatory and Collegiate Insti- 
tute, and the Western University, at Cassville. In the third session 
the Legislature added to the list the Brownville College and Lyceum, 
the Salem Collegiate Institute, the Eock Bluff Academy, the Dakota 
Collegiate Institute, the Nebraska University at Wyoming, the Omaha 
Collegiate Institute, St. Mary's Female Academy, the University of 
St. John, the Omaha Medical University, and amended the charter of 
the Western University. In the fall session of the same year char- 
ters were granted to the University of Nebraska, Wyoming College, 



DeAYitt Collegiate Institute, Falls City College, the Literary Associa- 
tion of the Elkhorn, the Dodge County Lyceum and Literary Asso- 
ciation, and the State Historical Society. In 1858 Dempster Biblical 
Institute and the Lewis and Clark College were chartered. 

There was a general impression that the chartering of universities 
was a good thing, and the Legislatures of those early days had a blank 
form of charter which became a bill for the creation of a university, 
ready for introduction as soon as the name of the prospective institu- 
tion was inserted. 


In a very complete paper on the university, read by Professor H. 
W. Caldwell before the State Historical Society at its 1889 meeting, 
and from which the foregoing facts have been taken, it is recorded that 
the bill organizing the University of Nebraska was introduced into 
the Senate February 11, 1869, by Mr. Cunningham, of Richardson 
county. It was referred to the Committee on Education, of which 
Hon. C. H. Gere was chairman, and was reported back the next day, 
with amendments, and passed. It was passed by the House and 
signed on the 15th, having become a law within four days from its 


introduction. A bill was passed about the same time in the session, 
providing for the sale of unsold lots and blocks in the town site of 
Lincoln, and for the erection and location of a State Lunatic Asylum 
and a State University and Agricultural College ; and as an illustration 
of the jealous care with which the State's educational interests have 
always been guarded, it may be mentioned that on February 12th the 
bill was amended, on motion of Mr. Tullis, of Lancaster, by striking 
out the words, "lunatic asylum" before the words, "university" etc., 
and inserting them after those words. The original charter of the 
university provided for a board of twelve regents. Nine of these 
were to be chosen by the Legislature in joint session, three from each 
judicial district, and the Chancellor, Superintendent of Public In- 
struction, and Governor, were made ex-qffioio members of the board. 
In 1875 an amendment was passed providing that the Chancellor 
should not thereafter be a member of the Board of Regents, and at the 
same time provision was made against an increase of the number of 
regents by an increase in the number of judicial districts. The con- 
stitution of 1875 .creates a board of six regents, to be elected by a 
direct vote of the people. 

The charter of the university provides for five colleges, viz: A 
college of literature, the sciences and arts ; a college of law ; a college 
of medicine ; a college of agriculture and the practical sciences ; and a 
college of fine arts. The contract for the erection of the building was 
let August 18, 1869, the corner-stone was laid September 23d, the 
building was accepted January 6, 1871, and the university was opened 
with an enrollment of about ninety students January 6, 1871. The 
corner-stone was laid with Masonic ceremonies. "Major D. H. 
Wheeler," says Mr. Caldwell's paper, was master of ceremonies. A 
brass band from Omaha headed the procession. In the evening a 
grand banquet was given, Governor Butler made a few remarks, Mr. 
Wheeler a short speech, then Attorney General Seth Robinson gave 
an address on "Popular Education." There was a banquet attended 
by a thousand people, and dancing was indulged in from ten till four 

The record of the doubts and fears of the Board of Regents and 
citizens of Lincoln as to the safety of the university building, forms 
an interesting chapter in the history pf the institution. Before the 
doors were even opened to students the rumor gained currency that 



the building was unsafe, and in June, 1871, three professional archi- 
tects were secured to examine it. They reported that it was safe for 
the time being, and that a few inexpensive repairs would render it safe 
beyond a doubt for years to come. The repairs were made and the 
university opened. In March, 1883, at a special meeting of the re- 
gents, a report was received from another set of architects, and a new 
foundation was ordered put under the chapel, and this was done. 
June 26, 1877, the Chancellor in his report called the attention of the 
board to the condition of the building. This time four architects were 
employed — one from Omaha, one from Nebraska City, and two from 
Lincoln, and on the strength of their report the regents resolved, July 
6, 1877, to tear down the building and erect a new one at a cost of 
■$60,000, $40,000 to be raised by the citizens of Lincoln, and work 
was to commence immediately on securing the above amount. The 
citizens of Lincoln were not satisfied, and sent to Chicago and Dubuque 
for architects, who examined the building and pronounced it easily 
repaired. August 15th a committee of Lincoln citizens met the re- 
gents, and upon the new light presented by them, the resolution to 
tear down was reconsidered, and a new foundation and other repairs 
were ordered, to be paid for by the citizens of Lincoln. The repairs 
were made at a cost of $6,012. Various attempts have been made to 
secure an appropriation to reimburse the citizens of Lincoln for this 
•expense, but all have failed. 

Mr. Caldwell's paper states that on June 3, 1869, a committee con- 
sisting of Regents C. S. Chase, Supt. Beals, and Rev. D. R. Dungan, 
was appointed to secure names of suitable persons for Chancellor. Jan- 
uary 6, 1870, the salary of the Chancellor was fixed at $5,000, and A. 
R. Benton was selected on the second ballot. H. S. Tappin, J. D. But- 
ler, E. B. Fairfield, and A. Barns, each received one vote on the first 
ballot. The next year the Chancellor's salary was reduced to $4,000 
and the salaries of professors fixed at $2,000. The first faculty was 
elected April 4, 1871, as follows: Ancient Languages, A. H. Manley; 
Mathematics, H. E. Hitchcock; English Literature, O. C. Dake; 
Sciences, H. "W. Kuhn, who declined and recommended Rev. Samuel 
Aughey, who was unanimously elected at the June meeting. June 13, 
1871, a tutor was authorized, and G. E. Church was chosen as the 
first tutor at a salary of $1,000. Finally the first faculty was com- 
pleted, by the election, September 6, 1871, of S. K. Thompson to the 


chair of agriculture, with the condition that he was not to enter upon 
the discharge of his duties for at least one year. From this modest 
beginning of four professors and one tutor the faculty has developed 
into a body of twelve professors, two associates, two adjunct profes- 
sors, two instructors, two tutors, two lecturers, and the principal of 
the Latin school, besides assistants in the laboratories and the teach- 
ers in art and music. 

The character of the development of the university course of in- 
struction can not be better summarized than by quoting the words of 
Prof. Caldwell: "Two sharply-marked principles have governed in 
the formation of the courses of study. The first period was charac- 
terized by an almost inflexible course of study ; there were practically 
no electives. The classics and mathematics formed the backbone 
of the work. A term or two of history and of English literature, a 
couple of years of some modern language, and a text-book study of two 
or three sciences, were switched in, with no expectation of securing 
more than a mere outline knowledge of these subjects. They were 
not supposed to be able to give mental culture ; the scientific course 
even was not made to secure a mental development; its object was to 
give practical knowledge. In short, whether for better or worse, the 
ordinary college course of the renaissance type, only slightly impreg- 
nated with the modern scientific and historic spirit, was the only one 

" The second period begins in 1 880 and marks an entire revolution in 
ideas. An elective course was introduced and the principle recognized 
that all studies may be made about equally valuable for purposes of 
mental culture, and therefore the courses were planned with reference 
to continuity of work in each line. The pamphlet announcing the 
change says : ' The elective system is the one that insures the great- 
est interest and profit in every study, and it is the only system that 
allows a student to become a special scholar in any one department, 
while still leaving to him the option of a general education.'" 

The progress of the university, under the system introduced in 1 880, 
has been steady and rapid, and the institution has become widely known 
for its original work in several departments of investigation. The 
department of history is especially strong, and with the possible ex- 
ception of the Michigan and California universities, no institution west 
of the Alleghanies has developed its equal. The work which has just 


been published by Prof. George E. Howard, the head of this depart- 
ment on "Local Constitutional Government in the United States" 
has been most favorably received by the great historians of the world, 
and gives him high rank among specialists in historical investigation. 

The income of the university is derived from the interest on the 
proceeds of the sale of the Agricultural College and University lands, 
donated to the State by Congress, from the rental of unsold lands 
and from a university tax, levied by the State. The total grant of 
lands amounted to 135,576.31 acres. The income from this source 
in 1888 was about $38,923.64. It is estimated that under the present 
policy of disposing of these lands, the total permanent investment will 
be about $1,000,000. 

The unity of the educational system of the State is recognized both 
by the university authorities and those who have the direction' of the 
common schools. The high schools of the State are gradually and 
systematically being brought into close relations with the university 
by being accredited as preparatory schools whose graduates are ad- 
mitted to the university without examination. 

The university has passed the dangers of the formative period. It 
has a well-defined policy and course of study established upon the 
broadest and most modern basis. It has passed safely through the 
period of sectarian intermeddling, and the dangerous reaction which 
followed, and the spirit which controls its management now is one 
which, while recognizing the Christian element which pervades all our 
institutions, is broad and tolerant. There is no reason why, with the 
development of the State, the institution shall not become the equal of 
any in the United States. 


This institution, which, from its prosperous beginning, promises to 
be one of the leading schools of higher education in the West, had its 
origin in the following manner : 

In July, 1887, a proposition was made to the Nebraska Christian 
Missionary Board to donate certain lands, in or near the city of 
Lincoln, on condition that a university of the Christian church be 
established thereon. After investigation and consultation, a commit- 
tee especially appointed, decided to locate the proposed university on 
what was known as the Hawley farm, adjoining the city on the north- 



east. The donations of land received consisted of three hundred and 
twenty-one acres of land and city lots valued at four thousand dollars. 
At a meeting of the committee, held February 14th, articles of incor- 
poration were adopted and a subcommittee appointed, of which J. Z. 
Briscoe was chairman, to consider plans and specifications of a main 
building to be begun on or before May 1, 1888. 



He corner-stone of the first building was laid with appropriate 
ceremonies, April 30, 1888. The building consists of Milwaukee 
brick, trimmed with Michigan red sandstone. It is four stories 
high, exclusive of basement; one hundred and eight feet front by 
seventy-eight in depth. 

The action of the committee in inaugurating the enterprise was con- 


firmed by the State Convention held at Lincoln, August 28th to 30th' 
1888. A board of trustees was elected, to be known as the Nebraska 
Christian Educational Board. It consisted of J. Z. Briscoe, President; 
Ex-Governor Alvin Saunders, Vice President; C. R. Van Duyn, 
Treasurer; Porter Hedge, Secretary; and W. ,P. Aylsworth, W. T. 
Newcomb, Ira Titus, C. J. Hale, Thos. Wiles, J. T. Smith, C. C. 
Munson, E. T. Gadd. Subsequently the contracts were let for the 
first building, aggregating a cost of $65,000, to be completed about 
the first of January, 1890. The work thus far has progressed very 
satisfactorily, and is nearing completion. All expenses have been 
promptly met by the sale of lots. 

At a meeting of the Board in April, 1889, it was decided to open 
the school October 1, 1889. The following-named persons will con- 
stitute the first faculty : 

W. P. Aylsworth, A. M., Acting President, Dean of the Biblical Department, and 
Professor of Hebrew and. Biblical Literature. 

A. M. Chamberlain, A. M., Professor of Ancient Language and Literature. 

J. A. Beattie, A. M., Professor of Pure and Applied Mathematics. 

E. D. Harris, A. B. , Instructor in Preparatory' School. 

A. T. Noe., M. D., Instructor in Physiology, Anatomy, and Hygiene. 

Mrs. W. P. Stearns, Instructor in Vocal and Instrumental Music. 

The present prospects of the enterprise are very bright. Already 
several buildings have been erected and others are under way. A 
boarding hall for the accommodation of the students has been ordered 
built to be ready for the spring of the school year October 1st. A Street- 
car line has been projected and material ordered, connecting the city di- 
rectly with the university campus, known as "the Bethany Heights 
street-car line." The prospective endowment is thought to be not less 
than one hundred and sixty-five thousand dollars. Twenty-five thou- 
sand of this amount is a donation by J. J. Briscoe, which is designed 
to be used as a basis of support for the Chair of Biblical Literature. 


By an agreement entered into by the three Nebraska Annual Con- 
ferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church a commission, was ap- 
pointed, consisting of members of each Conference and representatives 
of the Boards of Trustees of the then existing colleges, for the pur- 
pose of considering the matter of locating a central university, under 



the control and patronage of the Methodist Episcopal Church in 

The commission met in Lincoln, in December, 1886, and selected 
Lincoln as the location of the future university. Trustees were 
chosen, and they entered upon the work of preparation at once. 

The corner-stone of the first university structure was laid in Sep- 
tember, 1887, and the institution was opened for students in Septem- 
ber, 1888. 

The property of the university consists of an endowment fund of 
one hundred thousand dollars, and five hundred lots in University 
Place, and a campus of forty-four acres. 


The cost of the building was about seventy-five thousand dollars. 
The building is fully completed, and is being thoroughly furnished 
for the best class of work. 

There are three regular courses of study — classical, scientific, and 
philosophical — besides complete courses in music, art, and elocution. 
There are eight regular professors, besides tutors. 

The total number of students enrolled since September, 1888, is 
about 150. 

The village of "University Place" was incorporated in 1888, and 
is rapidly developing as a first class educational center. The ele- 
ments that cluster about it are such as to insure its future character 
as a village of exceptional morality and intelligence. 

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jo dureQ pBajj aq:j jo pisuoQ psajj ifynda(j si asoo^j uj\[ -suoi^ 
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aq^ jo ^soj xo^Binoddy jo lapuBmiuoQ Avon si aSpuqnnq; mjaj 
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One of the successful schools of the city is the Catholic Seminary, 
located east of Fourteenth street, between U and V. The building- 
was originally built by a stock company as a dormitory for the State 
University, but it did not pay, and was sold at sheriff's sale in 1882, 
and was bid in by Mr. John Fitzgerald. He sold it to the Sisters of 


] ^ r T^ Si j~ r 

the Holy Child Jesus, who opened a general school there, and have 
conducted it ever since. For some time it did not fully pay expenses, 
and Mr. Fitzgerald generously supplied the shortage from his own 
pocket. It now is self-sustaining. Mrs. John Fitzgerald has labored 
constantly to encourage the school, and establish it; and owing largely 
to her kind offices, and the good work done by the sisters, the school 


has become one of the permanent and growing institutions of Lincoln. 
It will continue partly a general and partly a select school until Sep- 
tember, 1890, when the parochial school building, now being erected 
near the pro-cathedral, at the northeast corner of M and Thirteenth 
streets, under the direction of Rt. Rev. Bishop Bonacum, will be com- 

This building will cost about $35,000, and a school with prepara- 
tory and academic courses will open there in the fall of 1890, for 
young men. It will be conducted by the Brothers of the Christian 
Schools, and will open with a corps of five teachers. The curriculum 
will include a full commercial course of study and other practical in- 
struction. When this school is opened the grade of instruction in the 
young ladies' academy will be raised, the advancement having now 
been made in part, with a high standard of excellence in every par- 
ticular. Young ladies from all parts of Nebraska, without regard to 
religious belief, will be received and taught on equal terms. 


An important educational institution is now being founded by Prof. 
O. B. Howell, of this city. This is the Nebraska Conservatory of 
Music. A three-story building of cut stone and brick, 50x132 feet, 
with massive towers, is being erected at tha southeast corner of L and 
Thirteenth streets, in which is to be opened, this fall, a college of mu- 
sic and fine arts. The conservatory will be incorporated under the 
laws of the State, with a Board of Trustees, and graduates will receive 
diplomas. Students who are given special training as teachers will 
receive certificates. 

A full corps of the best teachers will be engaged. Each department 
will be in charge of a principal, who will be assisted by competent in- 
structors. Private instruction will also be given. A home will be 
furnished in the building for young ladies attending from a distance. 
This home will be under the supervision of the director, preceptress, 
and matron. At the beginning of each school year one free scholar- 
ship will be given some person in the State who has natural ability 
but not the means to acquire a musical education. 

It is needless to state that this institution will be an important ad- 
dition to the educational advantages of Lincoln, and, indeed, of the 
entire State. Professor Howell is a man of energy and ability, and 
will doubtless make the conservatory successful. 


In this connection it is proper to state that in 1887 the first of a 
series of annual musical festivals was attempted, and it was so success- 
ful that it was repeated and improved in 1888, and again in the spring 
of 1889. The last festival was received with every mark of popu- 
lar approval, and drew crowded houses for three successive nights. 
Such music as the "Hallelujah Chorus," and some of the famous ora- 
torios, were rendered by able singers from abroad, assisted by the best 
home talent. The credit for the success of these musical events was 
largely due to Mrs. P. V. M. Raymond, a most estimable lady of Lin- 

Elder Johnson established a denominational school for the Seventh- 
day Adventist Church, at the corner of Fifteenth and E streets, in 1887. 
which still continues, with a moderate attendance. 

A number of private schools of more than ordinary excellence are 
also conducted. 

It will be seen from the foregoing that Lincoln's claim of being 
the educational center of the West is well founded, and that the 
pride of her people in their institutions of learning is fully j ustified 
by the facts as they exist to-day. And the future holds much in 

Lincoln's churches. 247 


Lincoln's Churches — The Brooklyn of the West — Historical Sketches 
of all the churches of the clty — the y. m. c. a. organization. 

Lincoln is preeminently a city of churches. As an educational 
center the city is not equaled in the West. And while this is true, 
it is equally true that no city in the West can equal this in the 
number of its church organizations and the beauty of its churches. 
The present chapter is devoted to historical sketches of the various 
churches, which number about forty. A former chapter has given 
an account of the very early church work in the town of Lancaster, 
and the present will deal with the churches now occupying the field. 

In harmony with the spirit of Methodism, as soon as the emigrants' 
wagons had made a permanent halt on the prairies of Lancaster county, 
the Methodist Episcopal itinerant was on his track, and in 1867 Rev. 
Robt. Hawks was appointed to what was then called Lancaster Cir- 
cuit. He formed a Methodist class at Lancaster, and at the close of 
the conference year, Lancaster class had sixteen members. During 
the year 1867, the town Lancaster was changed to Lincoln, and the 
capital of the State located at Lincoln. No sooner was this done 
than the prophetic eye of Methodism took in the situation, and was 
laying plans to meet the emergency. In the spring of 1868, Lan- 
caster class was made a station, and the society named the First M. 
E. Church of Lincoln, and Rev. H. T. Davis was appointed its 
pastor. When Elder Davis arrived on the ground he found a society 
of sixteen members, a small shell of a church on Tenth street, just 
inclosed, with a $400 mortgage on it, and no parsonage. Among 
the sixteen original members can be mentioned Captain Baird and 
wife, John Cadman and wife, Wm. Cadman, A. K. White and wife, 
J. Kimball and wife, Mrs. J. Schoolcraft, with J. Kimball as class 
leader. At the end of the first year the little church on Tenth 
street was too small for the people. It was cleared of the $400 
mortgage and sold for school purposes, and a larger building, costing 


$3,000, built on the site the large St. Paul stone church now occupies^ 
Elder Davis stayed three years, and closed his pastorate with a mem- 
bership of 202. Rev. J. J. Roberts was the next pastor. He came 
in 1871, from the Genesee Conference, N. Y. He came to Nebraska 
with hopes of improving his health, which was poor; but instead oF 
his health being improved, he continued to grow worse, and at the 
end of one year he was compelled to give up work. His pastorate, 
though short, was successful, the membership having grown to 300, 
and a parsonage having been built — the present parsonage, less an 
addition since made. In 1872, Rev. G. S. Alexander was appointed 
to this church, and his pastorate is remembered because of the promi- 
nent part he took in the Woman's Crusade. In 1874, Rev. W. B. 
Slaughter was sent to the Lincoln M. E. Church. He came from 
Brownville and remained three years, the full pastoral term. His 
pastorate was a very successful one, and the increase in membership, 
and the growing audiences, demanded more room, and another wing 
was added to the church. Mr. Slaughter was succeeded by the Rev.. 
H. S. Henderson, of Iowa, who came in 1877, and served the church 
two years. The Young People's Meeting was organized during Mr. 
Henderson's pastorate, with Dr. Paine as leader. Rev. A. C. Wil- 
liams was the next pastor. He came in 1879, and remained the full 
pastoral term, three years. The A street society was formed during 
Mr. Williams's term, and a church built, but this was done contrary 
to his judgment and wishes. There was quite an opposition to the, 
movement, though a majority thought the time had come for this 
church to enlarge its borders and establish another church. Owing 
to the strong opposition to the movement, or from some other cause, 
this church made no growth or advancement till, at a later day, it 
was moved and changed to Trinity, as will hereafter be noticed. Rev. 
R. N. McKaig succeeded Rev. Williams in 1882. Rev. McKaig was 
an inveterate worker, and the church took a new impetus at once on 
his arrival. The congregation grew, and the question of a new 
church, which had been contemplated during Rev. Williams's pastor- 
ate, now revived, and the sentiment for a new church was strong. On 
April 23, 1883, an official meeting of the church was held, and it 
was decided to proceed at once to the erection of a new house of wor- 
ship. Committees were then appointed to look after the various 
departments of the work. On June 11th the plans of a Mr. Wilcox,. 

Lincoln's churches. 249 

of Minneapolis, were accepted, the cost of the proposed building to 
be $25,000. Excavating for the new church was begun on July 1st. 
It was soon found that the church would cost much more than con- 
templated, but it was decided to go on with the work as arranged, 
and a committee was appointed to solicit subscriptions for the excess 
of cost. The corner-stone of the church was laid by Dr. Marine, 
since pastor of the church, in the spring of 1884, and the church 
was dedicated by Bishop Bowman on Sunday, August 23, 1885. The 
church cost $45,000 instead of $25,000, but this amount was soon 
paid in, leaving the church free from debt. This church was then 
called, as it had first been named, the First M. E. Church, which 
name was changed, in the fall of 1883, to the St. Paul M. E. Church. 

Rev. C. F. Creighton, of Circleville, Ohio, succeeded Rev. Mr. 
Williams by appointment. He came in 1885, and remained two 
years, being elected Chancellor of the Nebraska Wesleyan University 
in the fall of 1887. The first year of Rev. Creighton's pastorate 
was doubtless the most successful in the history of the church. It 
was during this year that the great Bitler revival took place This 
large revival swelled the church membership, including the proba- 
tioners received from the meeting, to about 1,200. This large mem- 
bership was too much for one pastor, and Rev. J. S. Bitler, the 
evangelist, was elected as assistant pastor till conference. It was 
during this year, on March 19th, that the church decided to build a 
new church, east of the Antelope. A site was selected, and a tem- 
porary tabernacle erected for services till a new church could be built. 
This new church was commenced on the corner of R and Twenty- 
seventh streets, and work on it was pushed with all possible speed. 
In less than four months from its commencement it was ready to 
be turned over to the trustees. 

At the annual conference held the following September, J. T. 
Minehart was appointed pastor of the new church. The society was 
named Grace M. E. Church, and the new church building, costing 
$11,000, was dedicated September 19th, 1889, by Bishop Warren, 
free from debt. The second year of Rev. Creighton's pastorate, 
1886, was an eventful one. Grace Church had become well estab- 
lished, and was moving on, but still there were calls from South 
Lincoln and West Lincoln for help on new churches, and during this 
year Trinity M. E. Church was established, which absorbed the old 


A street church, heretofore mentioned. A new site was selected, and 
a new church built on the corner of A and Sixteenth streets. At 
the next conference, Rev. H. T. Davis, the present pastor, was ap- 
pointed to Trinity Church, and since Elder Davis's connection with it, 
it has steadily grown, and is to-day one of the most prosperous church 
societies in the city, having a membership of upward of 260. 

This same year, Asbury M. E. Church, at West Lincoln, was built 
by the assistance and under the guardianship of St. Paul M. E. 
Church. This was dedicated in November, 1887, and Rev. Clay 
Cox was appointed its pastor. This church cost, with furniture, 
about $2,000. The Nebraska Wesleyan University thrust itself on 
St. Paul Church this year, and its pastor was the leading spirit in the 
interests of Lincoln, and every one seemed to look to him for lead- 

When the university was located. Dr. Creighton was elected its 
president, and resigned the pastorate of St. Paul's. He was suc- 
ceeded by Dr. Marine, who was transferred from the Indiana confer- 
ence. His transfer was a very unfortunate one, on account of his 
health. The church, especially at the time of his coming, needed a 
man of great physical activity to shepherd the people and gather up 
the scattered ones. Dr. Marine took sick in the summer of the first 
year, which developed into brain trouble, and for weeks he laid at 
death's door. He finally recovered, contrary to the expectations of 
every one, and was able to attend the annual conference. He thought 
he was as well as ever, and on the statement of his physician that he 
was able to take the work, he was returned to St. Paul Church for the 
second year. 

On September 10th, 1888, W. H. Prescott was elected by the official 
board as associate pastor and financial secretary, and was appointed by 
the Presiding Elder. On the return of Dr. Marine for the second year, 
he found himself able to occupy the pulpit only occasionally, and he 
soon was taken down with another serious attack of brain trouble, which 
entirely unfitted him for the duties of pastor. The official board 
granted him a vacation of three months, for him to go East, in hopes 
of his recovery. On February 4th, 1888, Rev. W. H. Prescott 
resigned as assistant pastor and financial secretary. The pulpit was 
supplied by transient ministers for several months. Dr. Marine's 
health was made worse by his trip East, and he soon returned, worse 



than when he left. It now being evident to himself that he would 
not be able to assume his duties again, he tendered his resignation as 
pastor, which was accepted April 1st, 1888. The official board then 
requested the Presiding Elder, with the aid of the Bishop, to secure a 
new pastor for St. Paul Church as soon as possible, and at a meeting 
of the Bishops at Delaware, Ohio, in May, several united in recom- 
mending Rev. F. S. Stein, of Milwaukee, Wis., who was appointed. 
His transfer to the Nebraska Conference was arranged, and on June 
1, 1889, Rev. Stein was on the ground as pastor. The membership 
of St. Paul's is now nearly 600. 

The Rev. Father Emmanuel Hartig, O. S. B., the present German 
pastor of Nebraska City, is the founder of the Catholic Church of Lin- 
coln. He was born at Inchenhofer, Bavaria, May 1, 1830. In Sep- 
tember, 1857, he came to the United States, and went to St. Vincent's 
monastery, Westmoreland county, Penn. Here he remained until 
September, 1860, when Rt. Rev. Abbott Wimmer sent him to Atchi- 
son, Kansas. At this place he was ordained priest by Rt. Rev. John 
Miege, first Bishop of Leavenworth, July 10, 1861. His Superior, 
Rev. Augustine Wirth, sent him on the same day to take charge of 
Nebraska City mission. From Nebraska City he administered for 
several years to the spiritual needs of all the Catholics in the South 
Platte country, including Salt creek. When, in 1867, Lincoln be- 
came the capital of the State of Nebraska, he came hither in the inter- 
ests of his charge. He found but few houses in Lincoln ; at one of 
these, the house of Mr. Daily, he held service until the erection of the 
first church, in 1868, a frame building, 24x50, costing $1,000. On 
the completion of this church Lincoln had service once a month. Rev. 
Father Hartig being no longer able to operate successfully over so 
broad a field, Rt. Rev. Bishop Fink sent him an assistant in the per- 
son of Rev. Michael Kaumley. From August, 1868, to February, 
1869, either Rev. Father Hartig or Rev. Father Kaumley held service 
in Lincoln once a month. At the latter date, Rev. Father Kaumley 
was recalled and his place taken by Rev. Father Michael Hofmeyerj 
of St. Vincent's Abbey, Westmorland county, Penn. For some time 
he attended Lincoln from Nebraska City, but finally located at the 
capital, and thus became the first resident Roman Catholic priest of 
our city. He added thirty feet to the church and began to keep the 

Lincoln's churches. 253 

parish records of Lincoln. Until his arrival the records had been 
kept at Nebraska City. The first marriage mentioned in the Lincoln 
records is that of Silas Huff and Catherine Curtin, in the presence of 
Thos. G. Murphy and Honora Murphy, Rev. Father Hofmeyer being 
the minister. The first interment was that of Henry Armon, who 
died in October, 1869. The first recorded baptism took place Sep- 
tember 26, 1 869. The last record made by Rev. Father Hofmeyer 
is that of a marriage on December 26, 1870. During his charge at 
Lincoln he performed seven matrimonial and sixty-five baptismal 

Rev. Father Hofmeyer was succeeded by Rev. William Kelly. 
Rev. Father Kelly's first recorded act is that of the marriage of John 
J. Butler and Mary J. Kennedy, which took place, May 16, 1871 ; 
his last official act was a baptism on April 29, 1874. 

From this date the growth of the church has been steady, keeping 
pace with all the other interests of our city. 

Within the past ten years the growth of the Catholic population of 
Lincoln and of the whole South Platte country became so pronounced 
that the Rt. Rev. James O'Connor, Bishop of Omaha, petitioned the 
Bishops of the Third Plenary Council, of Baltimore, to erect the South 
Platte country into an independent diocese, with the See at Lincoln. 
The wishes of the learned prelate were acceded to. Rt. Rev. Thomas 
Bonacum was appointed to the new See. 

Rt. Rev. Thomas Bonacum was born near Thurles, Tipperary 
county, Ireland, January 29, 1847. During his infancy his parents 
emigrated to the United States and settled at St. Louis. His early 
education was conducted by the Christian Brothers until his fifteenth 
year, when he entered the ecclesiastical seminary of St. Francis de 
Sales, near Milwaukee, Wis. At this renowned institution, during a 
period of six years, he applied himself to the classics, English litera- 
ture, and the sciences. He devoted himself to the studies of philoso- 
phy and theology under the Lazarist Fathers, at Cape Girardeau, 
Mo., until the time of his ordination. He was ordained June 18, 
1870, at St. Louis. Some time after this he went to Wiirzburg, 
Bavaria, and spent a number of years in the profound theological 
course, the study of canon law, and German literature. At the end of 
this course he made the tour of Europe. When he returned to the 
United States, he successively had charge of various missions, all of 




which he administered in a manner commendable to himself, beneficial 
to the interests of religion, and satisfactory to his ecclesiastical supe- 
riors. In 1881, as an appreciation of his success in more contracted 
fields, he was appointed rector of the very important parish of the 
Holy Name of Jesus, in St. Louis. Here he continued to labor suc- 
cessfully until his election to the See of Lincoln. 

In 1 884, The Most Rt. Eev. Richard Kenrick chose Rev. Father 
Bonacum as one of the two theologians who always go with a Bishop 
to a council. " This choice, coming from one of so distinguished saga- 
city, marked the Rev. Father Bonacum as one who would soon receive 
even still more remarkable favors. The subsequent facts soon veri- 
fied this anticipation. The fathers of the Third Plenary Council, of 
Baltimore, decreed to divide the diocese of Alton, locating the See at 
Belleville, in Southern Illinois. By the unanimous consent of the 
assembled fathers, Rev. Father Bonacum was chosen to preside over 
the new diocese. Rome, at that time, did not ratify the erection of 
the proposed See, and the matter was held in abeyance. Nevertheless 
Leo XIII did not overlook the young candidate proposed by the 
council of Baltimore. When, therefore, the request of Rt. Rev. 
Bishop O'Connor was granted by Rome, Rev. Father Bonacum, the 
previous choice of the fathers of the council for Belleville, was ap- 
pointed Bishop of the See of Lincoln. 

The bulls were issued August 9, 1887, by Leo XIII, and the 
consecration took place November 30, 1887, at St. Louis, in St- 
John's pro-cathedral, in the presence of a vast concourse of prelates, 
clergy, and laity. The Venerable Peter Richard Kenrick, Archbishop 
of St. Louis, was the consecrator. The general approval of the choice 
of Rome was evidenced by the largest gathering of prelates and priests 
that ever took place on a similar occasion in that sacred edifice. 

Rt.'Rev. Bishop Bonacum's reception, which took place at Funke's 
opera house, December 20, 1887, will long be remembered by all who 
were present as one of the most notable events connected with the 
history of our city. With the coming to Lincoln of the Rt. Rev. 
Bishop Bonacum, a new and powerful energy was infused into all the 
Catholic enterprises of the South Platte country. Not less than thirty 
churches have been dedicated in the period of twenty months. But it is 
in the city of his See, as one would naturally expect, that the most re^- 
markable proofs of his zeal are to be found. * The enlargement of the 


pro-cathedral, the furnishing and decoration of the interior, the procur- 
ing of suitable . sacred vestments, etc., were the first objects of his 
solicitude. All these ends were attained at a cost of about $18,000. 
While this work was in progress, the organization of a German con- 
gregation, and the building of St. Francis de Sales Church for this 
people, was part of his occupation: The erection of St. Francis de 
Sales Church has effected a complete reunion and revival of German 
Catholic interests. The Rt. Rev. Bishop soon saw the great need of a 
hospital in so large a city as ours, and set himself to the task of getting 
one worth his accustomed energy and firmness of purpose. With this 
object, he purchased the beautiful home and grounds of J. A. Buckstaff, 
for $20,000. He gave charge of the sick to the Sisters of St. Francis, 
trained nurses, who opened the hospital September 1, 1889. The 
purchase was made June 15, 1889. 

On the acquisition of this handsome property, he entered into a 
contract with the city by which he assumed the care of the sick for a 
period of seven years. The terms of the contract on the Bishop's 
part are exceedingly moderate. The getting of the hospital was a 
gratification to all humane people. 

Weighty and various as these cares were, they could not divert the 
mind of the Bishop from one of the subjects of his deepest anxiety : 
the establishment and promotion of the cause of Christian education 
among his people. Reverently obedient to the instructions of the 
Third Plenary Council, of Baltimore, that the Bishops of the United 
States should supply all parishes with schools, he commenced the 
splendid school building which is in course of erection between the 
pro-cathedral and the pastoral residence, on M street. Whatever 
skill and experience can devise will be done to make the edifice one 
of the most complete of its kind in the State. The cost will range 
between $20,000 and $25,000. The Rt. Rev. Bishop has a very 
efficient body of clergymen, on whom he was dependent for the 
accomplishment of the works we have enumerated. 

Rt. Rev. Bishop Bonacum is an early riser and late worker; very 
methodical in all that he does. He is simple in all his tastes and 
habits. In manner he is dignified and courteous ; in etiquette he is 
very considerate of the wishes of others. Hospitality is. a pronounced 
trait of the Bishop's. As a prelate he is very broad and far-seeing, 
thoroughly equipped with all the spiritual and worldly knowledge 

Lincoln's churches. 257 

necessary for his exalted position. He has a mind which, while 
comprehensive, has a singular facility for grasping details. He is 
pliant enough when principle is not involved, but where it is a 
matter of right or justice, he is inflexible and inexorable. 

The First Presbyterian Church is one of the most prominent, pros- 
perous, and influential, of the leading churches of Lincoln. It was 
organized with eight members April 4, 1869, by Rev. J. C. Elliott, 
of Nebraska City. It was not until January, 1870, that the church 
secured the regular services of a minister, the Rev. H. P. Peck com- 
mencing his labors January 15, 1870, with "only five effective mem- 
bers" on the ground. January 26, 1871, Rev. H. P. Peck was 
elected the first pastor of this church, and was duly installed on the 
last Tuesday of April, 1871. The first church edifice was erected near 
the corner of Eleventh and J streets, on lots donated by the State, and 
was dedicated to the worship of Almighty God October 9, 1870, the 
Rev. T. H. Cleland, D. D., (then of Council Bluffs, Iowa,) preaching 
the sermon. This first sanctuary was built at a cost of $5,000, and 
with various improvements from time to time, continued to be the 
house of worship for the First Presbyterian Church until December, 
1884. Ground was broken for the erection of the present church edi- 
fice at the southwest corner of Thirteenth and M streets, in April, 
1884; its vestry room was completed in September, 1885, and was 
occupied as a place of worship till the middle of January, 1886, when 
the main auditorium was finished and immediately set apart to its 
sacred uses. This new and beautiful sanctuary, costing $40,000, was 
formally dedicated to the worship of God July 18, 1886, the Rev. 
A. V. V. Raymond, D. D., (now of Albany, N. Y.,) preaching the 

The following minsiters have served the church either as pastor or 

stated supply : 

Eev. A. P. Peck January, 1870, June, 1874. 

Eev. J. "W. Ellis April, 1875 March, 1876. 

Eev. S. W. Weller April, 1876 July, 1878. 

Eev. James Kemlo January, 1879 i December, 1879. 

Eev. John O. Gordon July, 1880 November, 1882. 

Eev. Edward H. Curtis, D. D January, 1883 

It now has a membership of nearly 500, and a large and successful 
Sunday School, at the First Church, of which Mr. Milton Scott is 


Lincoln's churches. 259 

Superintendent, Mr. W. G. Maitland First and Miss L. W. Irwin 
Second Assistant Superintendent. Mr. Charles A. Hanna is Secre- 
tary and Treasurer. Its Ladies' Aid Society, Ladies' Missionary 
Band, Young Ladies' Mission Band, Young People's Society of 
Christian Endeavor, and Children's Bands, are all prosperous and 
doing good work. The officers of the First Church are as follows : 

Edward H. Curtis, Pastor. 

Elders— N. S. Scott, C. S. Clason, Wm. M. Clark, J. J. Turner, 
C. M. Leighton, C. A. Barker, John R. Clark, H. E. Hitchcock, J. 
K. Barr. 

Trustees— T. H. McGahey, F. W. Bartruff,; M. D. Welch, W. G. 
Maitland, C. A. Barker, W. H. McCreery, Wm. M. Clark, J. W. 
Winger, C. W. Lyman. 

This denomination has also established a mission in North Lincoln, 

where a Sunday School is maintained, with Mr. Osborn as its 

Superintendent. A church will probably be organized there in the 
near future. 

The First Presbyterian Church building is one of the six fine 
structures erected by the leading denominations of the city, costing 
on an average $45,000, exclusive of grounds, and taken together per- 
haps are not equaled in a city of twenty-two years of age on the conti- 
nent. An additional half dozen costly and elegant church buildings 
exist in the city, although not so fine as the first six referred to. All 
the church buildings are of modern architecture, and exhibit great 
liberality on the part of the people of Lincoln. 

In October, 1888, a number of persons interested in the work of 
the Presbyterian Church, met in a vacant store building near the cor- 
ner of O and Twenty-seventh streets and organized a Sabbath School. 
At this meeting there were sixty-four persons enrolled as members of 
the school, and Mr. Thomas Marsland was chosen Superintendent, 
Mr. George G. Waite Secretary, and Mr. Almon Tower Treasurer, 
and a full corps of teachers selected, and classes organized. Preaching 
services were held in this store-room every Sabbath by different min- 
isters until February 14, 1889, when the school moved into the base- 
ment of a church being erected on the corner of Twenty-sixth and 
P streets, on lots donated in part by William M. Clark. On the 
evening of March 13, 1889, those interested in the work convened 
and formally organized a church, to be known as the Second Presby- 


terian Church of Lincoln, Nebraska. This organization was entered 
into by forty-six charter members. The officers elected were as follows : 

Elders. — Myron Tower, Thomas Marsland, W. C. Cunningham, 
and William M. Clark. 

Trustees. — Walter Hoge, J. H. Mockett 'jr., George A.Seybolt, and 
H. C. Tullis. 

On April 1, 1889, Rev. Charles E. Bradt, by invitation of the church, 
took charge of the work. The society has gone steadily on, until at pres- 
ent the church has an enrolled membership of eighty-seven, a Sabbath 
School numbering above 200, and a strong, growing, Young People's 
Society of Christian Endeavor. The Church is still worshiping iu the 
basement of what is to be the lecture-room of the church building. 
This basement has been put in at a cost of about $1,200, with the 
hope that the superstructure may soon be erected to meet the growing 
demands of the church and congregation. 

Prominent among the prosperous and influential religious societies 
of the city is the Congregational Church. The First Congregational 
Church, whose elegant building stands at the northwest corner of L 
and Thirteenth streets, is one of the pioneer religious organizations of 
the city. The Official Manual of the church for 1889 contains the 
following historical sketch : 

"This church was organized August 19, 1866, with six members. 
At that time, according to the records of the Council assisting the or- 
ganization, there were in the town seven buildings, viz., one seminary, 
four dwellings, one store, and one blacksmith shop. 

" Rev. E. C. Taylor was pastor of the church from its organization 
until October, 1867. The members of the church at its organization 
were F. A. Bidwell, John S. Gregory, Mrs. Welthy P. Gregory, Mary 
E. Gregory, Philester Jessup, Mrs. Ann M. Langdon. 

"Rev. Charles Little accepted a call to become pastor of the church 
on November 8, 1867, and continued until April, 1870. During his 
ministry the first meeting-house was erected. It was built in 1868 
and furnished in 1869. An Ecclesiastical Society, to have charge of 
financial affairs, was organized April 11, 1868, which surrendered its 
authority to the church and disbanded January 16, 1873. The church 
was incorporated January 23, 1873. Rev. Lebbeus B. Fifield was 
called to the pastorate September 12, 1870, and resigned June 4, 1872. 



August 1, 1872, Rev. Samuel R. Ditnock was asked to preach. He was 
installed by Council January 2, 1873, and dismissed on advice of 
Council January 15, 1875. • During his pastorate (1873) the meeting- 
house was considerably enlarged. A call was extended to Rev. Lewis 
Gregory September 16, 1875. He was installed by Council Novem- 
ber 23, 1876. The church building was repaired and refurnished in 
1878. April 29, 1883, the church voted to build a new meeting-house. 
The plan for the present building was adopted September 20, 1883. 
Work began November 6, 1883. The basement and chapel were oc- 
cupied for Sunday services January 17, 1886, and the auditorium on 
February 7, 1886. The building was formally dedicated January 9, 

" Since its organization different officers have served the church in 
order of time as follows : 

" Clerks.— J. S. Gregory, J. P. Hebard. 

"Deacons.— Y. A. Bidwell, E. J. Cartlidge, L. H. Fuller, G. S. 
Harris, J. S. Gregory, Geo. McLean, J. C. Leonard, W. C. Hawley, 
Geo. McMillan, Elisha Doolittle, M. B. Cheney, W. Q. Bell, S. H. 

" Trustees.— F. A. Bidwell, "W. R. Field, A. L. Palmer, Lindus 
Cody, S. M. Walker, O. W. Merrill, J. P. Hebard, S. B. Galey, R. P. 
Beecher, Geo. S. Harris, S. L. Coffin, J. C. Leonard, H. C. Babcock, 
T. H. Leavitt, Geo. McMillan, L. E. Brown, W. W. Peet, Charles 
West, T. F. Hardenburg, A. S. Raymond, M. B. Cheney, A. E. Har- 
greaves, B. F. Bailey. 

" Treasurers. — Albert Biles, J. R. Webster, L. A. Groff, Aldus 
Cody, R. P. Beecher, E. J. Cartlidge, Geo. McLean, T. F. Harden- 
burg, Elisha Doolittle, Charles West, J. C. Leonard, T. H. Leavitt, 
J. W. Bell, W. Q. Bell." 

The First Congregational church now has between 300 and 400 
members, maintains a large and prosperous Sunday School, and suc- 
cessful missionary societies and Society of Christian Endeavor. 

During the first week in August, 1887, a low, rough board house 
was erected, at the instance of Rev. Lewis Gregory and under his di- 
rection, near the northwest corner of Seventeenth and A streets. The 
work of construction required but two days, and with the chairs to 
seat it, cost ouly about $200. On the following Sunday, services were 
held there, under the direction of Rev. E. S. Ralston, and religious 


exercises continued to be held there regularly until the first Sunday in 
November, 1887, when the society was organized as the Second Con- 
gregational Church of Lincoln, and it was so incorporated. But at 
the first business meeting in 1888, the name was changed to that of 
"Plymouth Congregational Church." 

This primitive tabernacle first built was used as a meeting house 
until December, 1888, when the new church building, on the same 
corner, was so far completed that it could be used in part. On Eas- 
ter Sunday, 1889, the main auditorium was first used. When fully 
completed this building will be a commodious, complete, and hand- 
some structure, worth $10,000. The lots are valued at $5,000 more. 

Rev. E. S. Ralston has had charge of this congregation from its 
organization, and was regularly installed as its pastor on May 8, 1888. 

Plymouth Church now has a membership of over 100, and a Sun- 
day School of about 200. The membership of both church and Sun- 
day School is constantly growing. It has an active Society of Christian 
Endeavor, the second organized in Lincoln, the first having been 
founded in the First Congregational Church. Its Ladies' Aid and 
Missionary Society and Young Ladies' Missionary Society are doing 
good work. 

The present officers of the church are : Rev. E. S. Ralston, Pastor ; 
J. A. Wallingford, Clerk; W. A. Hackney, Treasurer. Trustees — J. 
A. Lippincott, W. A. Selleck, J. A. Wallingford, J. P. Walton, and 
W. A. Hackney. Deacons — J. A. Lippincott and Newton King. 

A Congregational church mission is now doing active work on the 
north side of N street, between Twenty-first and Twenty-second. A 
Sunday-school is held there, of which Miss Jennie A. Cole is Super- 
intendent. A small building was opened there for the mission on the 
last Sunday in July, its dimensions being about twenty-five by fifty 
feet. This mission promises to soon grow into the third organized 
Congregational society in Lincoln. It has been named the "Pilgrim 
Congregational Church." 

The German Congregational Church was organized in the spring of 
1889, by Rev. Adam Frandt, and services have been held at the cor- 
ner of Eighth and J streets. Though one of the latest societies formed 
in the city, it appears to be prosperous and growing in membership. 


The first service of the Episcopal church was held in Lincoln in 
May, 1868, by the Rev. R. W. Oliver, D.D. On the 17th day of 
November in the same year, the Rev. Geo. C. Betts, of Omaha, held 
the second service, and of those who were present only one was a mem- 
ber of the church. Subsequently the Rt. Rev. R. H, Clarkson, D. D., 
Bishop of the diocese, visited the city, holding services and preaching. 
About this time the Rev. William C. Bolmar was appointed mission- 
ary in charge. In January, 1869, steps were taken toward the or- 
ganization of a parish. A meeting was held, at which were present : 
Michael Rudolph, A. F. Harvey, John Morris, J. J. Jones, H. S. Jen- 
nings, E. Godsall, A. C. Rudolph, John G. Morris, R. P. Cady, J. 
C. Hire, Wm. C. Heddleson, S. L. Culver, and J. S. Moots, who 
signed a petition which was sent to the Bishop, praying for permission 
to organize a parish, under the title of "The Church of the Holy Trin- 
ity." The Bishop's consent having been granted, on the 10th of May 
the same year another meeting was held, at which a parish organiza- 
tion was effected, by the election of a vestry consisting of Michael Ru- 
dolf and A. F. Harvey, warders; and J. J. Jones, A. C. Rudolf, H. 
J. Walsh, Dr. L. H. Robbins, and J. M. Bradford. 

The parish was admitted into union with the council of the diocese 
in September of the same year. The congregation worshiped at vari- 
ous places in the city until 1870. The Rev. Mr. Bolmar left the 
parish in February, 1870, and in May of that year the Rev. Samuel 
Goodale took charge. Measures were at once adopted for the erection 
of a suitable place of worship, and a sufficient sum was subscribed to 
proceed immediately with the work. 

A church edifice costing $4,000 was erected at the corner of J and 
Twelfth streets, on lots belonging to the parish. It was consecrated 
March 5, 1871. At the end of a year the Rev. R. C. Talbott, now 
at Brownville, succeeded the Rev. S. Goodale, and continued in the 
rectorship until October, 1875. In April, 1876, the Rev. C. C. Har- 
ris became the fourth rector, and served the parish for seven years. 
During that time many improvements were made. A rectory was 
built, trees were planted, the church was repainted, a pipe organ was 
purchased, the church edifice enlarged, and the number of communi- 
cants rose to one hundred and four. 

The Rev. J. T. Wright came in November, 1883, and after one 
year gave way to the Rev. Alex. Allen. During the rectorship of 

Lincoln's churches. 265 

Mr. Allen steps were taken for the erection of a new and larger church. 
With this in view, Mr. Guy A. Brown, a most zealous and generous 
churchman, issued a small parish paper, the purpose of which was to 
awaken interest in the enterprise. On June 14, 1888, the corner- 
stone of the new church was laid by the Grand Lodge of Freemasons 
of Nebraska, Bishop Worthington also taking a prominent part in 
the ceremonies. The building is just about completed at this writ- 
ing. It is built of Colorado red sandstone, Gothic, cruciform; will 
cost about $35,000, and will accommodate about 500 people. Holy 
Trinity Church is the mother of two other organizations in the city. 
In the spring of 1888 the old church was removed to a lot on Twelfth 
street, between U and V, and a congregation was organized under the 
ministry of the Rev. R. L. Stevens, and took the name of " The Church 
of the Holy Comforter. In 1889 the Holy Trinity Chapter of St. 
Andrew's Brotherhood came into possession of the house of worship 
which had been used by the Baptists, and moved it to a lot on the cor- 
ner of Washington and Eighth streets. Regular services are held here 
by the rector of Holy Trinity and a lay reader. 

The working agencies of the church of the Holy Trinity at this time 
are: 1. The Holy Trinity Chapter of St. Andrew's Brotherhood, thirty- 
six members. 2. The Woman's Aid Society, forty members. 3. The 
Woman's Auxiliary to the Board of Missions, 110 contributors. 4. 
The Altar Guild, twenty-eight members. 

There are about 120 children in the Sunday School, of which Mr. 
W. L. Murphy is Superintendent ; about 1 50 communicants, and about 
600 individuals connected with the parish. 

At this time, July, 1889, the vestry consists of the following named 
gentlemen : 

H. J. Walsh, Sen. Warden; J. C. Kier, Jun. Warden; D. R. Lilli- 
bridge, Secretary; W. L. Murphy, Treasurer; R. H. Oakley, J. F. 
Barnard, E. P. Holmes, James Hearn, and C. H. Rudge. The Rev. 
John Hewith became rector March 1, 1889, before the completion of 
the new church. 

Prominent among the religious denominations of the city is the 
First Baptist Church. The Baptist Society is one of the most prosper- 
ous and progressive in the city, and its new edifice at the northwest 
corner of K and Fourteenth streets is a beautiful structure costing about 

. 18 


Lincoln's churches. 267 

$40,000. The new and handsome parsonage is situated on a lot im- 
mediately west of the church. A brief historical sketch of this society 
in Lincoln is here given. 

The First Baptist Church of Lincoln, Neb., was organized August 
22, 1869, with fourteen members. The first pastor was Rev. O. T. 
Conger, who began his labors here in June, 1870, and remained four 
and one-half years, until January, 1875. During his pastorate the 
church edifice on the corner of Eleventh and L streets was erected, 
and 169 persons were received as members of the church. 

In October, 1875, Rev. S. M. Cramblet became the pastor, and re- 
mained two years, during which time fifty-six members were received. 

In May, 1875, Rev. W. Sauford Gee began a pastorate of three and 
one-third years,during which the parsonage on L street was built, and 
110 members were received. 

In January, 1882, Rev. Dr. Chaffee began his pastorate, which 
continued one and three- fourths years, during which 115 members 
were received. 

May 4, 1884, Rev. C. C. Pierce began his labors with this church. 
During the latter part of his pastorate, a large subscription for the pur- 
pose of erecting a new church edifice was secured, and three lots at 
the corner of K and 14th streets were purchased. Rev. Mr. Pierce 
resigned September 5, 1886, having received 120 members into the 
church during his pastorate. 

The church immediately extended, a call to Rev. O. A. Williams, 
who accepted it, and began his labors in November, 1886. Under his 
ministry the church has been very prosperous. About 200 members 
have been added since he commenced his pastorate here; the large 
church building has been erected, and branches of the denomination 
have been organized in other parts of the city, of which he has gen- 
eral charge. A prosperous Sunday School is maintained, besides the 
usual subordinate organizations that are associated with all leading 
church societies. The membership is large and numbers many of our 
best and most influential people. 

The officers of the First church are as follows : 
Rev. O. A. Williams, Pastor; S. P. Bingham, Treasurer; P. S. 
Chapman, Clerk; L. 'C. Humphrey, Treasurer of Building Fund. 
Board of Trustees : C. W. Sholes, chairman ; Geo. H. Clarke, L. G. 
M. Baldwin, L. C. Humphrey, E. E. Bennett. 


Three Baptist Missions have been organized in the city, where Sun- 
day Schools are maintained, and of which Rev. O. A. Williams is the 
mission pastor. One of these missions is at the corner of J and Twen- 
tieth streets, Mr. L. G. M. Baldwin being Superintendent of its Sunday 
School. The North Lincoln Mission is quite prosperous, and will 
soon build a church to cost $3,000. Mr. H. J. Humphrey is Super- 
intendent of its Sunday School, which is held at the corner of Twelfth 
and Butler avenue. 

The East Lincoln Mission is located at the corner of Twenty-sev- 
enth and W streets, and Mr. S. S. McKinney is Superintendent of its 
Sunday School. 

• The Central Church of Christ in the City of Lincoln was organ- 
ized with twenty-eight charter members, on January 24th, 1869. 
Their first place of meeting was in the house of J. M. Yearnshaw,. 
who was also their first regular minister. Miss Julia McCoy, now 
Mrs. Marshall, and still a member of this congregation, was the first 
person immersed by them in Lincoln. The private house becoming 
too small, their place of meeting was changed to the old capitol 
building, and here they spent the fall and winter of '69. Joseph 
Robinson was the first elder of the church, and Bros. Hawk and 
Akin its first deacons. On July 3d, 1869, out at Crabb's mill, on Salt 
creek, the initial steps were taken toward the erection of a house of 
worship. G. W. French, J. M. Yearnshaw, and J. H. Hawk, were 
appointed a building committee. Slowly, and yet with patient per- 
sistence, the work went on, until on July 3d, 1870, the church house 
now standing on the northwest corner of K and Tenth streets was 
dedicated. Here, with varying success and failure, with mingling 
lights and shadows, the church has worshiped until this writing. 

On April 23, 1871, the first Sunday School of any moment was 
organized, with J. Z. Briscoe as Superintendent and C. C. Munson as 

Since the time of J. M. Yearnshaw the church has enjoyed the 
pastoral labors of D. R. Dungan, J. Z. Briscoe, J. B. Johnson, J. 
Mad. Williams, J. M. Streator, B. F. Bush, Chas. Crowther, R. E. 
Swartz, R. H. Ingram, and Chas. B. Newman, the last named occu- 
pying its pulpit now. 

The history of the Church of Christ in Lincoln would be sadly in- 



complete without special mention of Bro. Barrow's counsel and 
patient, helpful care ever since its organization. 

The history of the years from '71 until '87 is about such as comes 
to the average church. The church now numbers some 460. It has 
a house and lot in West Lincoln, and also a good lot in East Lincoln- 
Regular preaching and Sunday school services are held at all of these 
places, and are well attended. 

The church has an "Auxiliary to the Christian Woman's Board of 
Missions," and an efficient "Aid Society." It has a large "Young 
People's Society of Christian Endeavor," and a "Young Ladies' Mis- 
sion Band." Its present official board comprises the following : 

Elders. — J. Z. Briscoe, Geo. Leavitt, G. E. Barbar, E. D. Harris. 

Deacons. — Porter Hedge, J. M. Webber, J. A. Reynolds, C. R. 
Van Duyn, W. S. Mills, S. S. Young, S. M. Dotson, L. G. Leavitt. 

Deaconesses. — Mrs. Martha Hallett, Mrs. Martha Hedge. 

Evangelists. — Chas. B. Newman, R. W. Abberly. 

Of its Sunday School Chas. C. Munson is the efficient Superin- 

In the fall of 1886, realizing that it would soon be necessary 
to provide larger and more commodious quarters, the church pur- 
chased two lots on the northeast corner of K and Fourteenth streets, 
and early in 1887 steps were taken looking toward the erection of a 
new house of worship. Finally, after much consultation and delay, 
on October 25, 1887, plans were chosen and a building committee, 
consisting of J. Z. Briscoe, G. E. Barber, O. C. Bell, Porter Hedge, and 

C. C. Munson, was chosen. The corner-stone was laid July 3, 1 888, 
President A. R. Benton, of "Indianapolis, making the address. The 
church was dedicated on Sunday, August 25, 1889, with impressive 
services. It is a most beautiful structure, one of which the church 
may well be proud. 

The First Free Baptist Church of Lincoln was organized May 2, 
1886, with eighteen members, electing Rev. A. F. Bryant pastor, A. 

D. Baker deacon, and G. W. Sisson secretary. 

Land was purchased on the corner of F and Fourteenth streets, 
and a church house erected in the same year of the organization, and 
was occupied, though not wholly completed. Meanwhile Rev. Bry- 
ant removed, and Rev. B. F. McKenney succeeded to the pastorate, 

Lincoln's churches. 271 

remaining one year. Rev. O. E. Baker, of Providence, R. I., was 
elected, and commenced his labors with the church April 1st, 1888. 

By the liberality of friends, and the aid of the Home Mission Board, 
the church house was completed and dedicated in June, 1888, the 
pastor preaching the sermon, and Rev. E. H. Curtis, D. D., of the 
First Presbyterian Church, and Rev. O.W. Williams, D.D., of the 
First Baptist Church, assisting. 

The First Universalist Society of Lincoln was organized at the resi- 
dence of J. D. Monell, September 1, 1870, with W. W. Holmes, S. J. 
Tuttle, J. N. Parker, Mrs. Sarah Parker, Mrs. Julia Brown, Mrs. 
Laura B. Pound, and Mrs. Mary Monell, as charter members. About 
this time the property now in the possession of the society, on the 
corner of Twelfth and H streets, was secured by grant from the Leg- 
islature of the State. A subscription was also begun, looking toward 
the erection of a chapel. In the meantime the society held occasional 
services for worship in the Senate Chamber, in the old Capitol build- 
ing. During the month of December of this same year Rev. Asa 
Saxe, D. D., General Secretary of the Universalist denomination, vis- 
ited Lincoln for the purpose of ascertaining whether it would be ad- 
visable to make this a missionary point. His decision was favorable 
to such a movement. Consequently, with the financial aid of the 
denomination, the society was able to call Rev. James Gerton, then of 
Illinois, to be its first pastor. He accepted the invitation, and began 
work in September, 1871. The following October the corner-stone 
of the chapel was laid, and on Sunday, June 23, 1872, it was dedicated. 

All this was brought about largely through the efforts of one de- 
voted woman, Mrs. Mary Monell. It was she who first gathered the 
few scattered Universalists in the place together. Unaided she raised 
the subscription to build the chapel ; she collected the funds, saw that 
the work was done, and paid the bills. The early records of the so- 
ciety reveal the zeal and fidelity with which she did her work, the 
many difficulties with which she had to contend, and her final tri- 
umph. Mrs. Monell must always be looked upon as the patron saint 
of the First Universalist Society of Lincoln. 

In 1873 the denomination was so badly crippled by the panic of 
the year before that it was unable to continue its financial aid to the 
society; and as the society was not strong enough to support a pastor 


of its own accord, Eev. Mr. Gerton, after remaining two years, was 
forced to resign his charge. For nearly ten years after this the society 
had no settled pastor. Preaching services were held only occasionally 
and as Universalist clergyman were passing through the city, or stop- 
ping in it for a short time. During a portion of this time the chapel 
was rented to other religious organizations. The society continued in 
existence, however, and in the spring of 1883 the trustees of the Uni- 
versalist General Convention made arrangements with Rev. E. H. 
Chapin, the present pastor, to come to Lincoln and take charge of the 
work. Rev. Mr. Chapin has now been with the society something 
over six years, and during that time has quite thoroughly identified 
himself with the intellectual, moral, and benevolent, interests of the 
city. Year by year the society has continued to gather to itself num- 
bers and strength. The parsonage, now standing on one of the church 
lots, was completed in 1886. Connected with the church as auxiliary 
organizations are the Unity Club, the Ladies' Aid Society, and the 
Young People's Missionary Association. 

Trinity German Evangelical Lutheran Church was organized No- 
vember 24, 1881, with' five members, Rev. F. Koenig, now of Seward, 
Neb., presiding. The present pastor, H. Frincke, took charge of the 
congregation in April, 1882. During the first year services were held 
in a small church building corner N and Thirteenth, the present site 
of the new Y. M. C. A. rooms. The following three years the con- 
gregation assembled in the Universalist church, on Twelfth, between 
H arid J streets. In the spring of 1886 the new church was occu- 
pied, located on H, between Thirteenth and Fourteenth streets. In 
the rear of this church building a school-room accommodating ninety 
pupils was built. This department of the church work is under the 
direction of teacher F. Hellmann, whose school now numbers seventy 
pupils, who attend the school daily, except Saturday and Sunday. 
This gentleman, together with the pastor, is sustained solely by the 

The unaltered Augsburg Confession, and its Apology, the Formula 
of Concord, the two catechisms of Luther, the Apostolic, Nicene, and 
Athanasian Creeds, form the confessions of this church. It belongs 
to that great Lutheran organization, the Missouri Synod. The pres- 
ent officers are: Messrs. H. Herpolsheimer, H. Witte, Peter Grafel- 

Lincoln's churches. 273 

maim, trustees and elders. The status of the congregation is as 
follows: Souls, 400; voting members— ■i.e., male members of and 
above the age of twenty -one years — 60 ; communicants — i. e., all such 
as are allowed to partake of the Lord's Supper — 285. The current 
expenses amount to about $1,500 annually. The valuable property 
is free from all incumbrances. Services every Sunday at 10 A.m. and 
3 p. M. Evening services every other Sunday at 8 p. M. 

The African Methodist Episcopal Church was organized in 1872, 
by Rev. G. "W. Gaines, Presiding Elder of the Nebraska district. The 
pioneer organization was composed of but eleven members. Its place 
of worship was located upon the north side of E street, between Tenth 
and Eleventh, in 1873, on lots donated by the State, where the home 
of the society still remains, including the parsonage. A large and 
handsome building is now being erected there, which will cost, when 
completed, $6,000. 

The society is now in a prosperous condition, and has a growing 
membership, numbering 110. The Rev. J. W. Braxton is the pastor 
in charge. He is a popular and successful man with his people. 

A prosperous Sunday School is now maintained by this society, com- 
prising 100 scholars, with a library in connection therewith number- 
ing four hundred volumes. 

There are two other colored church societies in the city, but they 
are in a weak and disorganized condition. 

Besides the churches already mentioned, there are a number not so 
well established, but which deserve a place in a descriptive sketch of 
Lincoln. Among these is the Mount Zion Baptist Church, located at 
the corner of F and Twelfth streets. This church maintains regular 
services and a pastor, Rev. J. L. Cohron. 

Besides the German Evangelical Lutheran, there are other societies 
belonging to the Lutheran denomination. One is Our Savior's Dan- 
ish, located at 216 South Twenty-third street, of which Rev. P. L. C. 
Hanson is pastor, and H. J. Nellson clerk. Another is the Swedish 
church, located on K, between Thirteenth and Fourteenth, Rev. F. 
U. Swanberg pastor. A third is St. Paul's German, at F and Thir- 
teenth, Rev. H. Heiner pastor. 

All these churches enjoy regular service, and support Sunday Schools. 


The Swedish Methodist Society is just becoming well organized. 

A prosperous church has been started at Wesleyan University, which 
maintains the usual services, and of which Dr. C. F. Creighton is pas- 

The Reformed Hebrew Congregation is the society of the leading- 
Hebrew people of the city. S. Seligsohn is President, M. Oppen- 
heimer Vice President, W. Meyer Secretary, and I. Oppenheimer 

During the present year the Salvation Army disbanded. 

The Seventh-day Adventists hold services at the corner of Fifteenth! 
and E streets. Rev. L. A. Hooper is pastor. 

The Swedish Mission is located at 233 South Ninth street, with 
Rev. C. G. F. Johnson as pastor. 

The United Brethren Society holds its meetings at Eleventh and B- 
streets, Rev. J. Olive pastor. 

The Young Men's Christian Association of Lincoln was organized 
in January, 1880, with thirteen members. The following officers were 
elected: President, A. O. Geisinger; Vice President, Richard George;. 
Secretary, W. W. Peet ; Treasurer, M. L. Easterday. 

Robert Weidensall, the veteran Secretary of the International Com- 
mittee, was present at the organization, and has ever since had a deep- 
interest in the progress of the association. After four years' experi- 
ence the association decided that the only way to keep abreast with like 
associations in other cities was to employ a competent General Secre- 
tary. After considerable correspondence, and through the help of the 
International Committee, the present General Secretary, Jas. A. Dum- 
mett, was recommended as a suitable young man to carry forward, the 
work. Mr. Dummett is a graduate of Adrain College, Michigan, and 
had been an active worker in the Pittsburgh, Penn., Y. M. C. A. for 
five years. On the sixth day of August, 1884, Mr. Dummett arrived 
in Lincoln, and during his five years of faithful and efficient service, 
has succeeded in building up one of the strongest associations west of 
Chicago. The association during the past five years has kept pace 
with the rapid growth of the city. When the present Secretary ar- 
rived the association was occupying rooms for which they were pay- 
ing the sum of $12.50 per month, with a membership of one hundred. 
To-day the association is pleasantly situated in a handsome suite of six 
rooms in the McConnell block, 141 South Tenth street, with a pres- 

Lincoln's churches. 


ent membership of five hundred. The association has entirely out- 
grown its present surroundings, and on the 24th day of July the 
contract was let for a $60,000 association building, to be erected on 
the southwest corner of N and Thirteenth streets, to be completed by 
September 1, 1890. 


The building will be a very handsome structure, and when com- 
pleted it will not only be an ornament to the city, but a great blessing 
to the multitudes of young men who need just such privileges as the 
association can offer them in a building specially adapted to its work. 

The following well-known business men constitute the present ofli- 


cers and directors: J. H. Moekett si\, President; John R. Clark, 
First Vice President ; S. H. Burnharn, Second Vice President ; John 
L. Doty, Third Vice President; Capt. J. W. Winger, Recording Sec- 
retary; M. L. Easterday, Treasurer. Dr. Benj. F. Bailey, A. R. Tal- 
bott, E. E. Bennett, Chas. West, J. J. Imhoff, A. S. Raymond, J. Z. 
Briscoe, A. H. Weir, C. C. Munson, Directors. 

The following members of the board constitute the Building Com- 
mittee : John R. Clark, Chairman ; C. C. Munson, Secretary ; A. H. 
Weir, Treasurer ; Chas. West and A. R. Talbott. Ferdinand C. Fiske 
is the architect, and Louis Jensen the contractor. 



Secret Orders — The First Lodge Organized in Lincoln — Historical 
Sketch of all the Principal Orders Now in the City — Other 
Societies Deserving Mention. 

The characteristic of man to plant his hearthstone and religious in- 
stitutions as soon as possible upon settling in a new country, manifests 
itself almost equally in reference to his social and benevolent institu- 
tions. Hence we find that almost as soon as the early residents of 
Lincoln had established their homes, secret orders were founded, the 
first one to set up its altars in the city being the Independent Order 
of Odd Fellows. The history of Odd Fellowship in Lincoln com- 
mences almost at the time of the founding of the city, the first lodge 
being organized on the 21st of April, 1868. 

Two of the State Commissioners appointed to locate the capital — 
Gov. David Butler and Secretary of State Thomas Kennard — were 
members of the order in good standing. Their duties, however, in 
giving the initial impetus to a new State, and laying the foundation 
of its capital, occupied their time to such an extent that the organiza- 
tion of the first subordinate lodge was left mainly to other men and 

The lodge first organized was Capital Lodge No. 11, and its charter 
was committed to the hands of "W. H. Stubblefield, Max Rich, Sam- 
uel McClay, L. A. Onyett, and Samuel Leland. At the organization 
Max Rich was installed as N. G.; Samuel McClay, V. G.; Samuel 
Leland, Secretary ; and L. A. Onyett, Treasurer. W. H. Stubblefield 
was appointed District Deputy Grand Master. 

The lodge was instituted by the Hon. George H. Burgert, of Ne- 
braska City, who was at that time Grand Master. 

Three members were received into membership at that time, viz., 
L. Lavender, by deposit of card, and S. B. Pound and Seth Robin- 
son by initiation. 

The lodge was instituted in the limited second story of a frame 
building standing on the ground now known as No. 123 South Tenth 


street, the first floor being occupied as a drug store kept by Mr. 

On the 18th day of October, 1870, the Grand Lodge, I. O. O. F., 
of Nebraska, held its thirteenth annual session in Lincoln, using the 
Senate Chamber of the old capitol building. 

At that session, upon the petition of Bros. M. Rich, S. McClay, 
John Lamb, R. A. Bain, Charles Hasbrouck, M. G. Bohanan ; and 
Sisters S. E. Lamb, R. Oppenheimer, P. E. Helman, A. Bain, and L. 
E. Bax, a dispensation was given to organize a lodge of the degree of 
the Daughters of Rebekah, to be known as Charity Lodge No. 2. 

On the evening of the 19th the lodge was duly instituted by Grand 
Master John Hamlin, supported by the officers and members of the 
Grand Lodge. After adjournment a reception and banquet was given 
the Grand Lodge and the members of No. 2, by Governor David But- 
ler and his wife, at which many ladies and gentlemen of Lincoln were 
present. In memory of this occasion, and as an appreciation of its 
lasting fitness, the lodge has ever, with eminent success, kept up the 
social feature inaugurated on that evening. 

In 1871, among the members of Capital Lodge and those of other 
lodges sojourning at Lincoln, a number were found who- desired an 
organization in which they could work in the higher or encampment 
degrees of Oddfellowship. Accordingly, on the 7th day of April of 
that year, a charter was granted by the Grand Lodge of the United 
States, giving authority to organize a subordinate Encampment in 
Lincoln, to be known and hailed as Saline Encampment No. 4. On 
the 12th day of May the encampment was instituted by District Dep- 
uty Grand Sire St. John Goodrich, of Omaha. 

The officers were Samuel M. Clay, C. P.; W. P. Ensey, H. P.; J. 
C. Ford, S. W.; M. G. Bohanan, J. W.; Charles Purcell, Scribe, and 
Isaac Oppenheimer, Treasurer. 

Success has crowned its labors since the time of its organization. 

On the first day of July, 1872, the Grand Encampment of the Pa- 
triarchal Branch I. O. O. F. of Nebraska, was instituted, in the hall 
of Capital Lodge, the hall being then located in the third story of No. 
1023 O street. The Grand Encampment was composed of the Past 
Chief Patriarchs of the then five Subordinate Encampments in the 
State. It was instituted by St. John Goodrich, the District Dep- 
uty Grand Sire. 


The grand officers were D. A. Cline, of No. 1, Grand Patriarch; 
John Hamlin, No. 1, Grand High Priest; W. L. Wells, No. 3, Grand 
Senior Warden; John Evans, No. 2, Grand Scribe; D. H.Wheeler, 
No. 3, Grand Treasurer ; H. A. Wakefield, of No. 5, Grand Junior 
Warden; and St. John Goodrich, of No. 2, Grand Representative to 
the Grand Lodge of the United States. 

In 1873 the order had progressed so far that it was deemed expe- 
dient to organize another lodge. Accordingly about the 1st of May 
fifteen members, belonging to as many different lodges in different 
parts of the county, united in a petition to the Grand Lodge of Ne- 
braska for a new subordinate. The petition \?as granted, and on the 
5th day of June, 1873, the lodge was instituted by D. D. Grand Sire 
St. John Goodrich, to be known as Lancaster Lodge No. 39. 

The first officers were J. H. Wheeler, N. G; J. C. Ford, V. G. ; 
O. M. Druse, Secretary; and M. K. Fleming, Treasurer. 

J. H. Harley was the first initiate. The lodge has succeeded ac- 
cording to expectations. 

The next lodge, Germania No. 67, was instituted for the benefit of 
those who could best work in their native German vernacular. The 
lodge was instituted with ten charter members, on the 11th of De- 
cember, 1877, by Hon. H. W. Parker, of Beatrice, who was Grand 
Master of the order at that time. The first , officers were : George 
Webber, N. G. ; G. Rasgarshik, Y. G. ; Aug. Droste, Secretary; and 
G. R. Wolf, Treasurer. Seven parties were initiated. The advant- 
ages it brought, and its success in more closely fraternizing a large 
irumber of the German element in Lincoln, demonstrated that the 
judgment that gave existence to the new lodge was well founded. It 
has, perhaps, dispensed as large a benefice, both material and atten- 
tive, as any lodge in the city. 

March 29, 1881, a charter was granted for what is known among 
Odd Fellows as a degree lodge. On the evening of the same day it 
was instituted by Grand Secretary D. A. Cline, acting under a special 
commission. It was known as Magic Degree Lodge No. .2. It ex- 
isted but a short time. 

On the 14th of February, 1885, Ford Uniformed Degree Camp 
No. 2 was instituted by Isaac Oppenheimer, Grand Patriarch. The 
members procured an expensive uniform and acquired great profi- 
ciency in the peculiar drills of the order, which are of a military 


character. James Tyler was elected captain. This organization con- 
tinued and prospered until March, 1887, when it was merged into an 
organization of more enlarged purpose and of much grander propor- 
tions, known as the Patriarchs Militant, I. O. O. F. The style of 
the uniform was materially changed. From that time Ford Uni- 
formed Degree Camp No. 2 was, and still is, known as Canton Ford 
No. 2 P. M. Chevalier James Tyler again took the office of captain. 

As Lincoln grew in size and importance as a city, so did the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows as one of its benevolent and frater- 
nal institutions, until a new lodge was deemed to be necessary. Ac- 
cordingly, on the 22d day of January, 1886, Grand Master Arthur 
Gibson, of Fremont, placed the charter for Lincoln Lodge No. 138 in 
the hands of the following members : J. E. Douglas, L. C. Dunn,. 
Charles J. Heffley, C. D. Hyatt, O. P. Dinges, E. T. Eoberts, D. 
F. Dinges, A. H. Hutton, John Hill, S. M. Hartzell, S. W. Long, 
T. F. Lasch, J. D. Hurd, and W. D. Fowler, and organized them 
into a lodge. It prospered as all the lodges have up to this date. 

In an organization where the beneficial feature distinguishes it par- 
ticularly, each lodge must make it a chief object not only to have 
money in its treasury, but a reserve in the shape of real estate or in 
some productive form, so as to make good all its promises and pledges 
to members in their day of need. With such an object in view, nu- 
merous schemes were proposed and debated from time to time by the 
lodges. It was granted that something was needed which would at 
the same time afford accommodations as a lodge room and as a source 
of revenue. Until the spring of 1881 but little was accomplished. 
On the 3d day of May, 1881, articles of incorporation were adopted, 
executed, and filed, which brought into existence " The Odd Fellows' 
Hall Association, of Lincoln, Neb.," with a capital stock of $20,000. 
The stock was soon taken. On the 1st day of June the first regular 
meeting of the stockholders was held for the purpose of forming a 
permanent organization. At this meeting D. A. Cline was elected 
President ; Charles T. Boggs, Secretary ; W. W. Holmes, Treasurer, 
and a board of directors composed of nine stockholders, to hold their 
office for three years. 

Land was secured on the northeast corner of L and Eleventh, 
streets, and by the summer of 1882 a fine-appearing and substantial 
brick edifice, four stories in height, with two business rooms, was- 


completed, when the different Odd Fellow organizations then in the 
city found themselves housed with all the comforts and conveniences 

The scheme proved a success, and placed the two lodges participat- 
ing in the ownership, Nos. 11 and 39, on a solid financial basis. 

In the year 1868 Pythianism first obtained a foothold on Nebraska 
soil, through the efforts of Captain George Crager, who, coming direct 
from the birthplace of the order, planted its good seed with vigor and 
earnestness. August 28, 1871, John Q. Goss, the Grand Chancellor, 
assisted by P. G. C. George Crager, G. K. of R. and S. ; E. E. French, 
G. M. A. ; T. J. Lane, and Knight Henry Lauer, visited Lincoln and 
instituted Lincoln Lodge No. 8, K. of P., the first lodge in this city 
and the only one instituted that year in the State. 

The lodge flourished in numbers and finances, and the members 
were the most honored citizens of the then small but flourishing cap- 
ital city. In 1873 the lodge succumbed to financial reverses and other 
causes, and surrendered its charter in November of that year. 

In December a few of the old Knights strong in the spirit, with 
others, petitioned for a new charter. This was granted December 3, 
1873, by Judge J. W. Carter, Grand Chancellor, and the first meeting 
for institution was held in the attic of the old opera house. The first 
officers were: C. C, A. Meyer; V. C, G. B. Harris; K. of R. and 
S.,D.Kalor; M. of Ex., F. E.Smith; M. of F., M. J. Percival; P., 
P. H. Cooper. The lodge has met with various reverses and successes. 
It moved from place to place until finally it settled in the old Masonic 
Hall, corner of Tenth and O streets, which is now completely fitted 
up with lodge room, banquet room, kitchen, etc., for lodge purposes. 
It has been honored by the Grand Lodge in the selection of six of its 
members to the office of Grand Chancellor, and with eighteen subor- 
dinate offices. Its present membership is 186, and it possesses prop- 
erty valued at $3,800. Its present officers are: P. C, H. M. Shaeffer ; 
C. C, T. M. Cooke; V. C, S. A. Warner; P,, H. C. Fredericks; 
K. of R. and S., Banks Stewart; M. F., J. W. Percival; M. of Ex., 
M. Hooker; M. A., Wm. Chichester; I. G., J. J.Young; O. G, C. 
A. Risings. 

In the year 1884 some of the young blood of No. 16 conceived the 
idea that another lodge of Knights of Pythias would be of benefit to 


the order in this city. A petition to the Grand Chancellor resulted 
in a dispensation, and Apollo Lodge No. 36 sprang into existence, on 
August 18, 1884. The lodge flourished from the start, and as a 
result of its work and influence, the growth of both Nos. 16 and 36 
was large, nearly doubling in membership in one year. Its represen- 
tatives have taken high rank in the councils of the Grand Lodge, and 
are placed upon the most important committees. It has been honored 
in the choice of Richard O'Neill as Grand Chancellor, now the sitting 
Past Grand. It has a membership at present of eighty-three, eleven 
Past Chancellors, and one P. G. C. Its finances are in good condi- 
tion. The present officers are: P. C, Walter Keens; C. C, Ed P. 
Keefer ; V. G, F. B. Harris; K. of R. and S., T. D. Scudder ; M. of 
F., J. North; M. of Ex., H. W. Kelley; M. of A., J. J. McClellan; 
I. G., Winnie Scott; O. G. Win. P. Gronen ; Trustees, J. E. Doug- 
las, T. W. Tait, Phelps Paine. 

A. D. Marshall Lodge No. 41 was organized June 18, 1885, by G. C. 
J. C. MeNaughton, with twenty-three members. The lodge was named 
after the lamented A. D. Marshall, one of the earliest and most enthu- 
siastic Pythian workers of the city, and by good work and careful 
selection has to-day a membership of 105. The present officers are: 
P. C, W. H. Berger; C. C, L. T. Gay lord; V. G, Ed. R. Sizer; P., 
J. C. Davis; M. of Ex., Jno. F. Hayden; M. of F., H. E. Chapel; 
M. A., A. Katzenstein ; K. of R. and S., F. Hornefius; I. G., Wm. 
Webb; O. G., Chas. Posky. This lodge has already accumulated 
considerable property. 

Capital City Lodge No. 68 was instituted February 9, 1887, during 
the term of Grand Chancellor John Morrison, as a testimonial to him 
of the esteem in which he is held by the order in the Capital City of 
the State, with the large number of 135 petitioners, the largest list 
ever presented to a Grand Chancellor for approval, and embracing 
State, county, and city officials, and leading citizens. This lodge has 
continued its work with such success that to-day it strives with the 
mother Lodge, No. 16, for supremacy in numbers, in quality of mem- 
bership, and in wealth; and ranks second only in members in the 
State, having at this time 183 Knights, five Past Chancellors, and a 
District Deputy Grand Chancellor, S. J. Dennis. The present officers 
are: P. C, Prof. F. F. Roose; C. C, C. W. Hoxie; V. C, G. S. 
Foxworthy; P., Charles Burton; M. of Ex., R. Wackerhagen; M of 


F., Fred A. Miller; K of R and S., Q. L. Martin; M of A., A. G. 
Kellum; I. G., W. G. Stanus ; O. G., L. D. Van Kleek. Trustees : 
W. L. Cundiff, R. B. Graham, F. A. Miller. Financially it ranks 
well with any lodge in the city. 

The Uniform Rank, Knights of Pythias, has its headquarters for 
the State in Lincoln, the first division being organized here in 1879, 
from members of Lincoln Lodge No. 16. From this start this branch 
of the order has grown into a brigade of four regiments and thirty- 
six divisions, with the following officers, who are Lincoln residents : 
Brigadier General Commanding Nebraska Brigade Uniform Rank, 
Knights of Pythias, W. L Dayton; Col. and Chief of Staff, W. C. 
Lane; Col. and A. A. G., H. S. Hotchkiss; Col. and Asst. Com- 
missary Gen'l., John B. Wright, Lincoln. 

First Regiment Nebraska Brigade, Uniform Rank Knights of Pyth- 
ias, Col. H. F. Downs, Commanding ; Lieut. Col., J. E. Douglas ; 
Lieut, and Adjt., John Jenkins; Lieut, and Quartermaster, W. N. 
Rehlaender ; Captain and Chaplain, Rev. E. C. Ralston ; Quarter- 
master Sergeant, Walter Keens. 

Lincoln Division No. 1. Uniform Rank Knights of Pythias, was 
instituted in 1879, with thirty-two members. The division has been 
in many contests for honors, and on many occasions has won trophies 
which now adorn its armory, and at the meeting of the Supreme 
Lodge of the World, at Toronto, Ontario, in 1886, won the honorable 
distinction of third prize in competition with divisions from all over 
the country. The present membership is seventy-seven. The pres- 
ent officers are : Sir Kt. Capt., A. A. Lasch ; Sir Kt. Lieut., J. W. 
Percival ; Sir Kt. Herald, F. A .Miller ; Sir Kt. Guard, Nelson West- 
over; Sir Kt. Sent., F. A. Harris. It has upon detached service 
Brig. Genl. W. L. Dayton, Chief of Staff, Col. W. C. Lane; Col. and 
A. A. G., H. S. Hotchkiss; Col. John B. Wright, Commissary 
Genl. Wm. N. Rehlaender, Lieut, and Quartermaster of 1st Regt. 
Rev. E. C. Ralston, Capt. and Chaplain of the 1st Regt. 

A. D. Marshall Division No. 10, was organized September 28, 1886, 
with twenty-nine members. This Division, by hard work, is stead- 
ily coming to the front, and has a record of three prizes, and the 
Capt.,W. H. Berger, winning at Columbus during the Brigade encamp- 
ment of 1 889, an elegant sword as the best commander. The Division 
is the proud owner of a handsome flag, with emblems of the Uniform 


Rank worked in silk, and valued at $200, presented to it by its lady 
friends and admirers. It has a membership of thirty-nine, composed 
entirely of Knights of Marshall Lodge No. 41. The present "officers 
are : Sir Kt. Capt., Wm. H. Berger ; Sir Kt. Lieut., H. E. Chapel ; 
Sir Kt. Herald, G. E. Maxwell; Sir Kt, Guard, M. D. Clary; Sir Kt. 
Sent., H. Yanow ; Sir Kt. Treas., J. F. Hayden ; Sir Kt. Recorder, 
G. E. Van Every. Of its members there are on detached service,, 
Ed. R. Sizer, Col. and A. D. C. to Maj. Genl. James R. Carnahan,. 
Comdg. the Uniform Rank Knights Pythias of the world, and also- 
of the same rank on the staff of Gov. John M. Thayer, of the State 
of Nebraska ; H. F. Downs, Col. Commanding 1st Regt. U. R. K. 
P., Nebraska Brigade ; and John Jenkins, Lieut. Adjt, of the 1st 

Apollo Division No. 11 was instituted October ] 1, 1886, with thirty 
members. The Division has had a short but brilliant career, seven- 
teen of its members participating in the contest at Toronto in July, 
1886. The Division won first prize at Hastings, October 13, 1886,in 
a State contest, two days after institution, and first prize again the fol- 
lowing year at Omaha, in a contest open to the world. Later on it 
was presented with a gold medal at Omaha for excellence in drill, and 
bears the proud honor of being the best drilled Division in the State. 
The present membership is forty-one. A beautiful flag presented to it 
by A. E. Hargreaves, is highly valued by its members. There are on 
detached service, J. E. Douglas, Lieut. Col. 1st Regt. U. R. Neb. 
Brigade, and Walter Keens, Quartermaster Sergeant. Its membership 
is entirely from Apollo Lodge No. 36, and Diana Lodge No. 106, 
Beatrice. The present officers are : Sir Kt. Capt., C. M. Keefer ; Sir Kt. 
Lieut,, W. E. Churchill; Sir Kt. Herald, Frank B. Harris; Sir Kt. 
Guard, T. W. Tait; Sir Kt. Sent., Walter Keens; Sir Kt. Treas., R. 
O'Neill; Sir Kt. Recorder, J. E. Douglas. 

In the year 1888, through the exertions of Brother J. E. Douglas, 
P. C. of Apollo Lodge No. 36, a Board of Relief was organized for 
the aid and assistance of sojourning Knights who might be in need. 
This board is composed of representatives from each lodge, to whom 
all cases are referred, each lodge contributing, in proportion to its mem- 
bership, to the fund of the board. The meetings are held on the sec- 
ond Friday of each month, or the board may be convened at any time, 
if necessary, by the President or upon call of two members. It has 


already proved a very desirable adjunct to the order in this city. The 
following are the officers : 

President — J. E. Douglas. Address, 25 City Block, Eleventh St. 

Vice President— W. C. Lane, 1034 O street. 

Secretary — H. E. Chapel, 1115 P street. 

Treasurer — Prof. F. F. Boose, Academy of Music. 

Endowment Rank Knights of Pythias, Section 657, was established 
February, 1888, with twenty-five members, carrying over $50,000 
of insurance, and is in successful operation. 

The Ancient Accepted Scottish Eite of the United States, its Terri- 
tories and Dependencies, Lincoln Consistory No. 54, Chapter of Rose 
Croix, Council of Princess of Jerusalem, and a Lodge of Perfection, 
were organized April 23, 1889, with fifty members, by Joseph Mc- 
C-rath, of New Jersey, Grand Inspector General of the Rite as organ- 
ized A. D. 1807. 

The officers of the consistory are: A. G. Hastings, Commander; 
James Tyler, 1st Lieutenant Commander; A. E. Kennard, 2d Lieu- 
tenant Commander; Austin Humphrey, M. of S. and G. O. ; J. H. 
Peebles, G. C. ; M. R. Davey, G. T. ; L. D. Woodruff, G. S. 

The Chapter of Rose Croix has the following officers : S. G. Owens, 
P. M.; L. D. Woodruff. S. W.; E. O. Miller, J. W.; J. G. Chapin, 
Orator; M. R. Davey, Treasurer; J. C. Seacrest, Secretary. 

The Council of Princess of Jerusalem is officered as follows: W. 
R. Carter, G. M. ; A. E. Kennard, D. M. ; G. H. Peebles, S. W. ; M. 
L. Hunter, J. W. ; M. H. Day, Treasurer; A. L. Shrader, Secretary. 

The Lodge of Perfection has the following officers : W. S. Bloom, 
M. ; James Tyler, D. G. M. ; J. C. Seacrest, S. W. ; F. P. Lawrence, 
J. W. ; G. H. Peebles, Orator; J. H. Agers, Secretary; M. R. Davey, 

Lincoln Lodge No. 19, York Rite, Ancient Free and Accepted Ma- 
sons, was organized 1868, and has about 160 members. 

Lancaster Lodge No. 54 was organized in 1874. 

Lincoln Chapter No. 6, Royal Arch Masons, was organized April 
28, 1868, and has a membership of 170. 

Mount Morian Commandry No. 40, Knights Templar, was organ- 
ized in 1871, and has now a membership of 125. 

The Ancient Arabic Order of Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Sesostris 
Temple, was organized in 1880, and now has a membership of 125. 


It is now about twenty-three years since Dr. Stephenson formulated 
the plans for the organization of the Grand Army of the Republic, an 
organization which should bind together by ties fraternal thoee who 
had survived the clangers of the late war, and which should be charged 
with the care of those who might need the assistance of a brother's hand 
in time of distress. The founder of the order has long since gone to 
rest, and his body sleeps in the beautiful cemetery at Springfield, 111.; 
but his work still goes marching on. Not until September 8, 1879, 
however, was a post of the G. A. R. established in Lincoln. At that 
time Farragut Post, of thirty-four charter members, was formed, the 
following being the list : 

S. J. Alexander, L. W. Billingsley, R. C. Hazlett, Lyman Wood, 
A. D. Burr, W. S. Latta, Henry Masterman, W. A. Daggett, D. B. 
Howard, G. K. Amory, C. H. Gere, A. P. Tarbox, J. E. Philpott, 
,R. O. Philips, Silas Sprague, W. R. Kelley, W. H. Beach, Sam Mc- 
Clay, P. A. Smith, W. J. Cooper, N. Carpenter, Jas. Bolshaw, S. P. 
'Richey, T. B. Dawson, Levi Gable, D. C. Reynolds, E. G. Clements, 
C. C. Harris, A. Masterman, J. Curry, M. L. Hiltner, J. W. Owens, 
Thos. Sewall, R. N. Wright. 

The first officers were : Commander, S. J. Alexander; S. V., L. W. 
Billingsley; J. V., C. H. Gould; Chap., H. Masterman ; Adjt.,Geo. 
K. Amory; Q. M., A. D. Burr; O. D., R. C. Hazlett; O. G., Al. 
Masterman. The successive Commanders have been : C. H. Gould, 
J. C. Bonnell, R. C. Hazlett, Guy A. Brown, S. Y. Hoagland, Jos. 
Teeter, Harry S. Hotchkiss, and O. C. Bell. 

The post grew rapidly in numbers, at one time reaching over 500 
in good standing, and to-clay has a membership of 250, with the fol- 
lowing officers: Commander, H. C. McArthur; S. V., J. H. Fox- 
worthy ; Jr. V., Silas Sprague; Adjt., P. A. Gatchell ; Q,. M., Martin 
Howe; Surgeon, J. R. Haggard; Chap., Henry Masterman; O. D., 
Jos. Teeter; O. G., J. W. Bowen, Sergt. Maj., T. B. Beach; Q. M. 
Sergt., Wm. M. Gillespie. 

This is the largest post in the State, full of energy, whose charity 
and kindness is being felt by many worthy comrades and by the wid- 
ows and orphans of fallen comrades. The members of Farragut Post 
are known by Nebraska comrades for their whole-souled comradeship 
and efficiency in the work of the order. The meetings of this post 
are usually attended by between 100 and 150 members. 


Appomattox Post No. 214 was organized January 28, 1886, at 
which time the following officers were duly elected and installed; 
Lieut. Edgar S. Dudley, P. C; Hon. H. A. Babcock, S. V. C.; Hon. 
W. W. W. Jones, J. V. C.; Col. Brad P. Cook, Adjt.; D. R. Lilli- 
bridge, Q. M.; Prof. L. E. Hicks, Chap.; J. O. Carter M.D.,Surg.; 
Hon. S. J. Alexander, O. D.; Prof. Geo. B. Lane, O. G.; Hon. C. H. 
Gere,Serg. Maj.; and Maj. N. G. Franklin, Q. M. Serg. The mem- 
bership in the post is not large, some forty-five members comprising 
its entire roster, but it is, perhaps, fully equal, intellectually, to any 
organization in the State. The regular meetings of the post are held 
the first Saturday evening in each month. 

Art. 4, Sec. 3, of its by-laws, reads as follows : " On the death of a 
comrade, not over three months in arrears, the sum of one hundred 
dollars (to be drawn from, the relief fund) shall be paid to his widow 
or legal representative, for funeral expenses. Should there be no le- 
gal representative, the post shall take charge of the funeral, the ex- 
penses of which shall not exceed one hundred dollars, to be paid from 
the relief fund." Thus it will be seen that Appomattox Post is a 
benevolent insurance organization to a certain extent, and no worthy 
comrade who applies to any of its members for assistance goes away 

Its present officers are : D. R. Lillibridge, Post Commander ; C. W. 
Lyman, S. V. C; John Gillespie, S. V. C; Brad. P. Cook, Adjt.; O. 
E. Goodell, Q. M.; N. G. Franklin, O. D.; L. J. Alexander, O. G.; 
J. H. McClay, Q. M. Serg. The post is one of the best in the State, 
and is in a prosperous and flourishing condition. 

The fraternal and benevolent order, the Ancient Order of United 
Workmen, was started in Lincoln by the organization of Lincoln 
Lodge No. 9, on the 17th of December, 1885. From this beginning- 
there has been a steady growth, until to-day it has three English and 
one German lodge, with an aggregate membership of 315, whose pro- 
tection amounts to the grand sum of $630,000. There have been but 
three deaths in this membership since its organization four years ago, 
showing the care in selection of membership. 

The present officers of No. 9 are: P. M. W., J. W. McMillan; M. 
W., Dr. G. H. Simmons; Foreman, Art. Masterman; Overseer, W. 
J. Conley; Eecorder, Win. Helmer; Financier, F. W. Bartruff; Re- 


cei ver, A. D. Guile ; Guide, J. P. Masterman ; Watchman, George Fow- 
ler; Representatives to Grand Lodge, J. W. McMillan, F. W. Bartruff. 

Upchurch Lodge No. 15, A. O. TJ. W., was named after the founder 
of the Order, and instituted April 18, 1887. It now has forty-five 
members, and is increasing in membership. P. Zook is the present 
Master Workman. Representative to Grand Lodge, F. F. Roose. 

Capital City Lodge No. 80, A. O. U. W., was organized May 15, 
1886, by E. W. McDonald, Grand Lecturer, with a charter list of 
about thirty. The membership is energetic and pushing. It has been 
largely instrumental in building up the order in this city, and through 
its work the Improvement Association of the A. O. U. W. was formed, 
resulting in giving the order a hall of its own, nicely furnished, and 
at a moderate cost. It has to-day 127 members, who have the repu- 
tation throughout the State of doing the best degree work. It has a 
" team " organized for that purpose, the only one in the State. The 
present officers are : P. M. W., W. S. Houseworth ; M. W., T. J. 
Berky; Foreman, Wm. Clark ; Overseer, Frank Pynchon ; Recorder, 
James Farrell; Financier, W. McClellan ; Receiver, John Rivett; 
Guide, Wm. Brannon; I. G., Charles Deahne; Representatives to 
Grand Lodge, W. S. Houseworth, Henry Mayer, E. W. McDonald, 
E. L. Holyoke. 

Concordia Lodge No. 151, A. O. U.W., was organized May 17, 1888, 
with twenty-four charter members. It works entirely in the German 
language, and is composed of our best German citizens. It has a mem- 
bership at present of forty-seven, and has work ahead. The present 
officers are : P. M. W., Carl Schmitt; M. W., Louis Vieth ; Foreman? 
P. Andressen ; Overseer, A. Kroner ; Recorder, Paul Prigel ; Finan- 
cier, R. Heminghaus; Receiver, R. Hahnermann ; Guide, Joseph Fraasj 
I. W., Emil Motz ; Representative to Grand Lodge, Carl Schmitt. 

Logan Legion No. 8, Select Knights A. O. U. W., was organized 
in May, 1887. The object of this branch of the A. O. U. W. is ad- 
ditional protection to the amount of $3,000 if desired, and for a rep- 
resentative display of the order. 

Improvement Association, A. O. U. W., was formed for the purpose 
of procuring a hall and furnishing the same for the use of A. O. U. 
W. lodges. It is composed of members of the order who are stock- 
holders to the amount of $1,500, shares of which are $5. The stock 
can be increased at any time if desired. The association has furnished 


an elegant hall over 1114 O street, which is used by the A. O. U. W. 
and kindred societies. The stock is paying eight per cent, and is 
bought by the lodges when offered for sale. The officers are : J. T. 
Rivett, President; J. W. McMillan, Vice President; W. S. House- 
worth, Secretary. 

The "Modern Woodmen of America" is a fraternal, beneficiary, se- 
cret organization. Its founder is Hon. J. C. Root, of Iowa, who organ- 
ized the first camp in January, 1883, since which time the order has 
grown with wonderful rapidity. Not until April 27, 1886, was a lodge 
of Woodmen organized in Lincoln. At that time Capital City Camp 
No. 190 was instituted with a large charter membership, which has 
since grown to 225 members. The present officers of this camp are : 
V. C, W. J. Bryan ; W. A., T. P. Converse; Clerk, C. C. Calkins; 
Banker, S. K. Hale ; Escort, C. Van Raclen ; Assistant Escort, E. H. 
Whiteside; Sentry, C. J. Olson; Examiner, Dr. J. R. Haggard; Man- 
agers, W. A. Manchester, F. F. Roose, D. T. Cook ; Delegate, W. J. 

Antelope Camp No. 916 was instituted April 4, 1889, with one 
'hundred names on its petition. It erected, in East Lincoln, a hall for 
its own use, which was dedicated the following July. M. W. of A. 
was the first order to organize a local society in East Lincoln. Its 
officers are : V. C, I. H. Strawbridge; W. A., M. Ewing; Clerk, F. 
C. Smith; Banker, A. W. Field; Escort, S. D. Woodley; Watchman, 
J\ Risser;- Sentry, R. C. Jones; Managers, Dr. Pogue, H. Royer, F. 
W. Homan. 

F. F. Roose Camp No. 969, M. W. of A., organized May 2, 1889, 
started out under the most favorable circumstances. Among those 
who enrolled as charter members are many of Lincoln's most promi- 
nent citizens. The petition for a charter was signed by 190 persons, 
While the camp is young, its officers and members have entered into 
the work with the same spirit characteristic of the-whole order — push, 
enterprise, enthusiasm, business, and fraternity. The following are its 
present officers: V. C, A. R. Talbot; W. A., O. C. Bell; Clerk, Chas. 
G. Burton ; Banker, F. S. Kelly ; Escort, A. B. Bumstead ; Watch- 
man, N. King; Sentry, A. L. Church; Managers, Ed. Young, E. R. 
Sizer, O. F. Lambertson ; Delegate, W. M. Woodward. The camp 
-was named the "F. F. Roose Camp" in honor of F. F. Roose, Head 


Adviser, the second highest officer in the Supreine Camp, and an up- 
right and respected citizen of Lincoln. 

The entire Woodmen membership in Lincoln is over 500. 

Prof. Franklin F. Roose, one of the proprietors of the Lincoln 
Business College, is one of the most enthusiastic "secret order" men, 
not only in Nebraska, but in the entire West. He is connected with a 
number of orders, but his position in the order of Modern Woodmen 
entitles him to more than a passing notice in this work. In the summer 
of 1886 Mr. Eoose was elected by Capital City Camp No. 190, Modern 
Woodmen of America, as delegate to the Head Camp, at Sterling, 
111., which met the following October. At that camp he was elected 
Head Clerk, and before the session closed was elevated to the place of 
Head Adviser, the second highest rank in the Supreme Camp. At 
the Des Moines session of the Head Camp, held in November, 1888, 
he was elected for another two years' term, his reelection being by accla- 
mation. Prof. Roose was born at Moline, 111., July 3, 1855. His 
early education was received in the common schools of Rock Island. 
During the war he used to visit the rebel prison on Rock Island and 
trade with the soldiers, also with the Indians confined at Davenport 
for their depredations and murders in Minnesota. 

The father of Mr. Roose was a carpenter, and owned a lath and' 
shingle mill in which was employed a number of men, and it was in 
this saw-mill that the young man began work, at the age of nine 
years. He continued at this work for seven years, when he moved 
with his father to a farm a few miles from Edgington, 111. He there 
worked for five years, or until the spring of 1876. At that time Mr. 
Roose, being twenty-two years of age, bought a team, wagon, plows, 
harrows, etc., rented ground at $5 per acre, and began farming on his 
own account, in order to obtain money to complete bis education. 
One year's work gave him, after selling off all his farming imple- 
ments, $400, and with this amount he started, in the spring of 1877, 
for Bloomington, where he entered the Illinois Wesleyan University. 
Here he remained two years. While attending that school an incident 
occurred which shows the esteem in which he was held by his fellow 
students. The last and only money he owned was $25, and one 
night this, together with two concert tickets which he had procured for 
himself and the lady who was afterward to be his wife, was stolen. 



Hearing of this loss, the senior class of the college made up the entire 
amount and presented it to Mr. Roose, also making good the loss of 
his tickets. 

In the fall of 1879 Mr. Roose engaged as an instructor in Chad- 
dock College, Quincy, Ilk, at the same time carrying on his private 
studies. While connected with this institution lie was secretary of 
the faculty, member of the board of trustees, and secretary of it and 


of the executive board. In the summer of 1880 Prof. Roose and 
Miss Elizabeth Morrison, who afterward became his wife, both grad- 
uated in the Gem City Business College, and soon after, on Septem- 
ber 7, their marriage took place. A week later Prof. Roose took 
charge of the commercial department of the McKendree University, 
Lebanon, 111., which he conducted for two years. At the end of that- 
time Prof, and Mrs. Roose each received the degree of B. S., having 
completed all the studies of this course. 


On June 20, 1882, the professor and his wife sailed for South 
America, where he had engaged to teach in the Cullegio Americano, 
at Pernambuco, Brazil. He occupied that position six months, and 
then for six months was secretary to the Hon. Henry L. Atherton, 
United States Consul at that place. Afterward he was auditor for 
the Recife and Caxanga Railway Company, which position he retained 
until January, 1 884, when he resigned and returned to North A merica, 
the intense heat of that tropical country proving disastrous to his 

In the fall of 1884 Prof. Roose, his health having been restored by 
a summer's residence on a farm, came to Lincoln and founded the 
Lincoln Business College and Institute of Penmanship, Short Hand, 
Type Writing, and Telegraphy. In 1885 McKendree University 
gave Prof. Roose and his wife both the degree of M. S., and in 1886 
the Iowa Wesleyan University conferred upon them the degree of 
A. M. pro merito. His work in Lincoln has been remarkably suc- 
cessful, and while a resident of the city he has built up a social and 
business standing of the very best. 

Prof. Roose is a busy man; few minutes can go to waste with him,, 
as will be seen by the immense amount of work which he does daily ; 
and yet he always has time to say a few pleasant words to the friends 
he meets upon the streets or who call at the pleasant home of Prof, 
and Mrs. Roose on D street. In addition to the work of his busi- 
ness college, in which enterprise he has associated himself with Prof. 
D. R. Lillibridge, Prof. Roose has charge of the commercial depart- 
ment of the Nebraska Wesleyan University ; is the editor and pub- 
lisher of the Western Workman, the official organ of the A. O. U. W., 
and one of the editors of the Lincoln Monthly, an educational journal. 
In addition to these duties Prof. Roose attends to the duties which 
necessarily fall upon him as a prominent member of several secret 
orders, and the secretary of several associations. He is Head Adviser, 
Modern Woodmen; Past Chancellor Commander of Capital City 
Lodge No. 68, K. of P.; representative to the K. of P. Grand Lodge 
of Nebraska for 1889 and 1890; a member of the Masonic order; 
member of the Select Knights of America; one of the managers of 
Capital City Camp No. 190, M. W. A.; member of the Phi Delta 
Theta, the A. O. U. W., and the Nebraska Press Association ; Vice 
President of the A. O. U. W. Building Association, and was Secretary 


and Treasurer of the Northern Eelief Association, A. O. U. W., for 
one and one-half years. He is also Vice President of the M. W. A. 
board of directors for the State of Illinois, and of the executive coun- 
cil ; Past Master Workman and Deputy Grand Master Workman of 
TJpchurch Lodge No. 15, A. O. U. W., and was a member for 1887 
and 1889 of the A. O. U. W. Grand Lodge. The foregoing list is 
sufficient to show that no man in the West is more thoroughly identi- 
fied with the work of secret orders than is Prof. Roose, and the nu- 
merous positions of honor and responsibility to which his fraternal 
brothers have elevated him shows in what esteem and confidence he 
is held by them. 

A new secret society in which Lincoln is especially interested is 
the "Order of Delphians," whose Supreme Lodge is located in this 
city, and the first work of which was done here. This order was 
instituted in February, 1889, in Lincoln, and is an association de- 
signed to promote the interests of mankind by improving the welfare 
of those engaged in teaching. To this end the teachers are banded 
together to advance their social relations, provide libraries for their 
benefit, to promote harmony in the work of the teacher by adapting 
the instructor to the places he can best fill. In brief, it is intended 
to keep, at the Supreme Lodge, a bureau of information for the benefit 
of all teachers as well as school boards. Through the subordinate 
lodges places needing teachers, and teachers seeking situations, together 
with information concerning the merits of the teachers and circum- 
stances surrounding the places to be filled, are to be supplied to the 
Supreme Lodge. To this bureau all teachers can apply for employ- 
ment and boards and directors can come for teachers. In this way it 
is believed teachers can be located in situations they can best fill, thus 
promoting the general welfare of all concerned. 

Lincoln began with a subordinate lodge of twenty-eight members. 
The Supreme Secretary, Mr. W. S. Bloom, occupies a suite of rooms 
on the second floor of the Latta block, at 133-9 South Eleventh street. 

The Lincoln Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians was or- 
ganized on January 21, 1885, by Brother Richard O'Keeffe, of Omaha, 
and John Rush. 

Patrick Egan was elected County Delegate, but on October 1, 1885, 


he was called on to explain why he did not comply with the consti- 
tution, and approach the sacraments with the Division on Septem- 
ber 10th, as had been decided on at the previous meeting, (September 
3d.) Mr. Egan explained the reasons why he could not consistently 
abide by the laws compelling members to approach the sacraments in 
a body, as he felt that there was too much ostentation in parade. Mr. 
Egan said he was sorry to say that through circumstances he was con- 
strained to tender his resignation. 

Mr. Egan's resignation was accepted on November 8, 1885, and Mr. 
James Kelly was thereupon elected County Delegate, which office he 
still holds. 

The Division has made good progress since its organization, and 
now numbers about ninety members. In the fall of 1888 the Division 
presented a magnificent pulpit to Right Rev. Bishop Bonacum, for the 
pro-cathedral. The officers at present are : Thomas McShane, Presi- 
dent; Frank Sheppard, Vice President; Michael Corcoran, Record- 
ing Secretary ; Edward M. Maher, Financial Secretary ; Thomas 
McGivern, Treasurer. 

Lincoln Lodge No. 35, Independent Order of Good Templars, was 
organized May 10, 1868. The lodge grew very rapidly, attaining a 
membership at one time of 250. Since its organization it has enrolled 
about 1,500 members. 

Lincoln Lodge No. 35 can boast of having sent out into the field 
some of the best temperance workers of this country, Mr. and Mrs. 
John B. Finch, John Sobieski, Joe Critchfield, J. G. Wolfenbarger, 
and Mr. Sibley, being a few among the number. 

The officers of Lincoln Lodge No. 35, for the summer term of 1889 
are as follows: C. T., L. A. Willis; V- T., Nellie Hodge; S. J. 
T., Emma Hedges; Sec'y, G. H. Crandall; A. Sec'y, Mamie Gulick; 
F. Sec'y, C. E. Hedges; Ti-eas., Carrie Brown; Chap., Mr. Flucard; 
M., Mr. Cooper; A. M., Addie Bundy; Guard, Mr. Dill; Sentinel, 
Sam B. Ijams. 

The Ancient Order of Foresters meets on the first and third Fri- 
days of each month, in the K. of P. Hall, at 1007 O street. The list 
of officers at the opening of the year were: W. Robertson, J. P. C. R.; 
E. A. Stephens, C. R.; G. R. Knowles, S. C. R.; F. Cather, F. Sec; 


G. Leavitt, Rec. Sec; H. A. Stephens, Treas.; M. Seivers, S. W.; J. 
Leister, J. W.; R. Scheape, S. B.; D. N. Stephens, J. B. 

The Knights' of Tabor meet at 1021 O street. The officers for 1889" 
were: J.Wright, C. M.; J. Williams, V. M.; E. Brown, Secretary; 
J. F. Malone, Treasurer; J. H. Washington, C. O.; A. Johnson, C. G. 

The Knights of Labor first organized in this city in 1881, under 
Assembly Number 2659 ; but the order lapsed in a short time, and was 
reorganized in 1885 as Assembly 3774. The organization grew rap- 
idly to about 700 members, but failed to continue. A second reor- 
ganization was effected in 1887, out of which grew two locals, one- 
being the Lincoln Assembly No. 2659, whicli meets over 1023 O 
street, in the A. O. H. hall, and the other being Stephens Assembly 
573, named after the National Master Workman of the order. This 
assembly meets in Central Labor Union Hall, at 1125 O street. Both 
assemblies are prosperous, and together now number about 800 mem- 
bers. Of Assembly No. 2659 George W. Black is Master Workman 
and M. Corcoran Secretary. Of 573 J. H. Craddock is Master Work- 
man and S. J. Kent Secretary. It is expected that there will be six 
locals in the county before the close of the year. 

Lincoln has two principal social clubs, the Union and the Elks.. 
The Union Club was organized May 29, 1879, with the following 
officers : Edgar S. Dudley, President ; Thomas Sewell, Vice Presi- 
dent; J. H. Alford, Secretary; George C. Newman, Treasurer; J. H. 
Fawell, Master of Ceremonies. On the 19th of May, 1888, the club- 
was incorporated under the laws of the State of Nebraska, with a cap- 
ital stock of $5,000, divided into shares of $25 each. This allows the 
club a membership of 200, the present membership being 122. The 
present officers are : E. B. Appelget, President ; J. P. Barnhart, Vice 
President; J. A- Marshall, Secretary; W. W. W. Jones, Treasurer. 
Board of Directors — R. A. Perry, C. O. Whedon, R. C. Outcalt, 
Thomas Sewell, O. W. Webster, and J. H. Harley. The club occu- 
pies elegant rooms at the northwest corner of N and Twelfth streets, 
fitted up in a most complete manner. 

The "Elks" Club was organized March 10, 1888, with sixty-five 
charter members, which have been increased to 105 at the present time. 
The officers of this organization are : W. J. Houston, E. R.; H. R. 




Wiley, E. L. K.; E. B. Slosson, E. L. K.; W. H. Axtater, E. L. K.; 
A. E. Hargreaves, Treasurer. This club is elegantly quartered in the 
Shaberg Block, southeast corner of P and Eleventh streets. 

Prominent among the associations of the city is the Haydon Art 
Club, designed to promote a taste for the fine arts. 

There are also tennis, lacrosse, and wheel clubs, and supposed to be 
a press club, but this is not active. 

Among social clubs may be mentioned the Harmonie, Pleasant 
Hour, Pleasant Hour Jr., Swedish Social and Literary, and Yorke. 

Lincoln is the center of the organization designed to carry the pro- 
hibitory amendment at the election of 1890, known as the " Nebraska 
Non-partisan Prohibitory Amendment League." Mr. C. A. Atkin- 
son is the President of the State League, and Mr. Charles Robbins 
Secretary. Messrs. Atkinson, John M. Stewart, and C. F. Creighton, 
are members of the State Executive Committee. 

Lincoln is also the residence of Mr. A. G. Wolfenbarger, represent- 
ing Nebraska in the National organization of the Prohibition party. 

Among the most worthy benevolent societies of the city is the Wo- 
mari's Christian Association, designed to aid women in the work of 
self-support and protection. Also for the help of the needy. It now 
maintains a Woman's Home, on Eleventh street, between K and H. 

The Willard and Lincoln Branches of the Woman's Christian Tem- 
perance Union are active contributors to the Christian charities of the 
city, the former having done noble work for a couple of years past in 
the management of the city hospital. 

Company D of the First Begiment Nebraska National Guards is 
the best drilled militia company in the State. Captain, L. H. Che- 
ney ; 1st Lieutenant, W. M. Decker ; 2d Lieutenant, C. H. Foxworthy. 
The company has forty-nine men. 



The Ieish National League — Lincoln as the Head-quarters of this 
Powerful Org-anization— Sketch of the Lives of the Lincoln Men 
who are Prominent in the League. 

Lincoln having been for five years past the headquarters for the 
Irish National League of America, a brief sketch of that powerful 
organization will not be out of place. 

Since the first attempt of the English to subjugate the Irish people, 
hardly a generation of Irishmen has passed without protest against the 
usurpation of Ireland's national rights by an alien government. 
Through many centuries the story of this national resistance drags its 
bloody trail, down to the last great rising of 1798, when Antrim, 
Presbyterian, and Wexford, Roman Catholic, made a daring attempt 
to establish an Irish republic on Irish soil. They failed; but the 
memory of their heroism lived on to inspire the patriots of later years. 

The agitation of O'Connell had sunk into lethargy; the brave spirits 
of '98 had gone to other lands, with all their energy and all their gen- 
ius; famine and pestilence had made Ireland a grave yard ; and the 
world witnessed the greatest exodus of a people since the national mi- 
grations of antiquity. Gavan Duffy, sailing for Australia, said he 
left Ireland a corpse on the dissecting table; but the indomitable heart 
of the gallant little nation was still beating, though feebly. Then it 
was that James Stephens sewed the seeds that grew into the formida- 
ble Fenian Brotherhood. Alas! the curse of dissension made its ap- 
pearance ; the powerful conspiracy was forced into precipitate action, 
and failure was again written on Ireland's struggles for freedom. 
Among the gallant spirits sent to penal servitude for Fenianism was a 
dark-faced, thoughtful young man, who, though deprived of his right 
arm, was destined to work great things for Ireland. Michael Davitt, 
the one-armed young patriot, was sentenced to seven years incarcera- 
tion in a British dungeon. Better for the enemies of Ireland if they 
had hanged him. During the lonely hours he thought out the Irish 


question, and he studied the causes of Ireland's constant failures. He- 
became convinced that it was only madness to dream of encountering 
England's armies in the field. But he was finiiliar with the social 
miseries and inequalities of privilege that formed the common inheri- 
tage of the British and Irish masses, and he believed that an agitation 
in Ireland, going as far as but not beyond the limit of revolution,, 
for the destruction of the Irish land system, combined with a demand 
for the establishment of a parliament in Ireland to legislate for local, 
needs, would touch a sympathetic chord in the hearts of the British 
masses and prove much stronger than merely argumentative pleadings 
in parliament, and more likely to succeed than armed insurrection. 
He would agitate without, and proper representatives should voice- 
the people's cry within the walls of the British parliament. When 
the prison doors were opened, Davitt went to work to put his'ideas 
into practical shape, and the result was the establishment of the Irish 
Land League in 1879. Davitt and Thomas Brennan, now of Omaha, 
were its evangelists. Patrick Egan became Treasurer, and Charles- 
Stuart Parnell, the parliamentary and de facto leader of the Irish peo- 
ple, at once espoused the new organization. Soon thereafter branches 
of the league were formed in America, and the Irish Land League 
of America became a strong organization. Though Irishmen were 
not numerous in Lincoln at that period, they made up in energy what 
they lacked in numbers, and a branch of the Land League was formed 
here with the following officers: President, Hon. John Fitzgerald;: 
Vice President, Rev. M. A. Kennedy; 2d Vice President, General 
Victor Vifquain ; Secretary, Thomas Carr; Treasurer, E. P. Cagney. 
It may be remarked, incidentally, that in 1867, the gallant General 
Vifquain went to Ireland to give the Irish cause the service of his 
well-tried military experience. 

In 1882 the Land League was suppressed in Ireland, and Parnell 
organized the existing Irish National League. Early in 1883 a 
great convention of Irishmen and descendants of Irishmen was held 
in Philadelphia, and the American Land League was merged into a 
new organization known as the Irish National League of America, 
the objects of which are simply to sustain in every necessary way, the 
constitutional policy of Parnell in his efforts to secure Home Rule for 
Ireland. Alexander Sullivan, Rev. Dr. O'Reilly, of Detroit, and 
Roger Walsh, as President, Treasurer and Secretary respectively, con- 


stituted the first executive officers of the league. At a convention held 
in Boston in 1884, Patrick Egan, then a resident of Lincoln — where 
he settled after escaping the clutches of Dublin Castle officials, who 
on any pretext would have hanged him as a recompense for his pat- 
riotic devotion — was elected President, and with Mr. Egan the head- 
-quarters of the league came to Lincoln, where it has since remained. 
In January, '86, Secretary Walsh having resigned, Jno. P. Sutton suc- 
ceeded him and became a citizen of Lincoln. The third convention of 
the Irish National League of America took place in Chicago in August, 
1886, and our fellow townsman, Hon. John Fitzgerald, was elected to 
the Presidency by an overwhelming vote, Treasurer O'Reilly and Sec- 
retary Sutton being reelected to their respective offices without oppo- 
sition. The Irishmen of Lincoln have done good service to the Irish 
cause. In December, 1885, Lincoln contributed $2,400, and in 1888 
$1,171, besides nearly $600 for the sufferers in the blizzard of Janu- 
ary, 1888. The meetings of the League are features of Lincoln life? 
and are largely attended. The present local officers are P. O. Cassidy, 
President; E. P. Cagney, Treasurer, and John P. Sutton, Secretary. 
The local ex-Presidents are John Fitzgerald, Patrick Egan, and J. J. 

As the names of Fitzgerald, Egan, and Sutton, have been so promi- 
nently connected with the League for years, and all being residents of 
Lincoln, it is eminently proper that this work should give some ex- 
tended personal notice of these men. 

Hon. John Fitzgerald was born over fifty years ago, in Limerick, 
■county, Ireland. His father was a tenant farmer holding at the same 
time a small piece of free-hold property, the remnant of a more ample 
•estate that had once been in the possession of his ancestors, but which 
had been reduced to a few acres by the operation of laws that had 
proved only too successful in bringing the old landed proprietors to 
beggary and ruin. Edward Fitzgerald, the father of the subject of 
our sketch, was evicted from his farm, and seeing the poverty and de- 
-cay that surrounded him on all sides, leased his little free-hold, and 
with his sons sailed for the United States, back in the "forties." 

At that time there was considerable prejudice against Irish immi- 
gration to America, and if the immigrant from the Green Isle found 
a fair field, he could also say that he found no favor. Americans of 
that day are not to be lightly blamed. American literature was in its 



infancy. The mental food of the people was mainly derived from 
English sources, and the character of the Irish people was delineated 
by men imbued with racial hatreds. Eeared in this atmosphere of dis- 
torted teachings, and fed upon unrefuted calumnies, it is no wonder 
that the mass of Americans felt prejudiced toward the Irish race, 
whose most numerous representatives were the unlettered and poverty- 
stricken victims of a tyranny described by Edmund Burke as the 
most perfect system ever devised by the perverted ingenuity of man 
to drive a nation mad. The immigrants, too, had their serious faults, 
which, though doubtless the engendered results of a century of oppres- 
sion, helped to increase the aversion prejudice had already excited 
against them. Intemperance was painfully prevalent, and faction- 
fighting was a vice that long baffled the efforts of the priest and pa- 
triot to destroy it. Americans are a just people, and are quick to 
fling away their prejudices when convinced that they are in error, and 
few are more ready to recognize and reward true merit. 

The Fitzgerald family, after arriving in New York, pushed west- 
ward, to find employment in the great public works which evenutually 
made New York and Pennsylvania the leading States of the Union. 
They quickly developed qualities of mind and heart which won the 
confidence and respect of the leading contractors of that day. John 
Fitzgerald was then a youth of seventeen summers, with a strong, 
muscular frame, and a vigorous constitution. He was then, and al- 
ways has been, a strict disciple of Father Mathew, from whom he 
had received the pledge while yet almost an infant. A salient feature 
of his character is his incontrollable desire to be doing something. 

In those early days, after the close of the open season, it was usual 
for the great armies of canal builders to withdraw for the winter to 
the neighboring towns, waiting for the spring to resume work. Only 
too many frittered away in these idle days, all the money they had 
accumulated by hard labor in the burning heat of summer. The 
Fitzgeralds were men of a different stamp, and did not believe in 
making their summers pay for their winters. They sought such work 
as could be found, even if the remuneration hardly paid their living 
expenses. It was on one of these occasions that John Fitzgerald ac- 
cepted work from a farmer for his board and seven dollars per month. 
At another, time he was working for a farmer, digging ditches, when 
his quick perception showed him how he could do the work by con- 


ract, make money for himself, secure better wages for his companions, 
and give greater satisfaction to -the farmer. He made his proposition 
to the latter, and it was accepted. 

In twenty-four hours John Fitzgerald was a contractor, his fellow- 
workmen became his employes, and he stood on equal ground with 
his former employer. The job was finished much quicker than the 
farmer had calculated, and the work was done to his complete satisfac- 
tion. The laborers received higher wages than their agreement with 
the farmer had called for, and John Fitzgerald had a good round sum 
of money to the credit of his profit and loss account. That was Mr. 
Fitzgerald's first contract, and to-day he speaks of it with greater pride 
than of all the enterprises of magnitude he has since completed. 

The reputation achieved by Edward Fitzgerald and his sons did 
much in the districts wherein they labored, to raise the character of 
the Irish in American opinion, and contractors were glad not only to 
employ them, but to sublet to them large portions of their work. 

After the death of their father, in New York State, the brothers, 
Edward and John, turned their attention to the construction of rail- 
roads. After satisfactorily completing important contracts in New 
England during the war, they gradually worked westward until they 
reached Wisconsin, where they built several hundred miles of rail- 
road. Following the star of empire, the brothers penetrated through 
Iowa with their iron highways. After the death of his brother Ed- 
ward, John assumed control of what had become a vast business, and 
after building the greater part of the C. B. & Q. in Iowa, crossed the 
Missouri and took up work for the B. & M. and Union Pacific roads, 
until his name became inseparably bound up with the history of rail- 
roading from the Atlantic to the Rocky mountains. 

Mr. Fitzgerald made his first home in Nebraska at Plattsmouth, 
where he owns a very large amount of property. Since becoming a 
resident of this State, Mr. Fitzgerald, besides his work in Nebraska, 
was associated with S. Mallory esq., C. E., of Chariton, Iowa, and 
Martin Flynn esq., of Des Moines, Iowa, in the construction of the 
Cincinnati Southern road through Tennessee; also in building the 
Denver, Memphis & Atlantic railway, in association with the Fitz- 
gerald & Mallory Construction Company. The latest enterprise of 
our active townsman is the construction of the St. Louis & Canada 
railroad in Michigan and Indiana. 


Mr. Fitzgerald has very extensive landed property in Nebraska. 
The man who as a boy looked with tear-filled eyes upon the few fields 
from which he and his father were evicted, is to-day the owner of two 
of the largest and best managed farms in America, embracing 8,000 
-acres of unsurpassed fertility at Greenwood, and 6,000 equally as 
-good in Gage county, in this State. In addition, he has several farms 
in Wisconsin and other states. 

His investments in commercial lines are many and extensive. He 
•owns the large West Lincoln Brick and Tile Works, and also has a 
•controlling interest in the Rapid Transit company, of which he is Pres- 
ident. He is also President of the First National Banks of Platts- 
inouth and Greenwood, and of the Nebraska Stock Yards Company, 
and a Director of the First National and Union Savings Banks of 
Lincoln. Mr. Fitzgerald is also largely interested in mercantile in- 
vestments, and has stores in different parts of the State. 

His first experience with Lincoln was Colonel Tom Hyde's invita- 
tion to the hospitality of a shanty, and his first bed in the same shanty 
was a buffalo robe on the ground, damp with recent rains. To-day 
his magnificent residence and beautifully laid out grounds crown 
Mount Emerald, the finest elevation in the city, and here he loves to 
•extend the genuine hospitality typical of the Geraldine. 

His splendid wholesale business block at the corner of Seventh and 
P is rapidly approaching completion, and it is but the. precursor of 
other stately edifices with which Mr. Fitzgerald's enterprise will em- 
bellish the city he has chosen for his home, and which owes so much 
to his untiring energy. 

Although the most liberal and tolerant of men, Mr. Fitzgerald is a 
strict Roman Catholic, and a munificent contributor to his church. 
The Convent of the Holy Child Jesus is the gift of Mr. Fitzgerald to 
the nuns of that order, and his subscriptions in aid of the Catholic 
•Church of Lincoln have been generous and constant. Some three 
years ago he gave a large sum to help in the construction of St. Pat- 
rick's Church in Rome, and Pope Leo XIII, in recognition of his 
generosity, sent him a valuable gold medal. 

The Geraldine race, kin with the Gherardini of Florence, and 
•boasting its descent from Eneas, the Trojan hero, has been conspicu- 
ous for its heroic fidelity to the fate and fortunes of the Irish nation. 
Its blood has poured out on every battlefield for Irish liberty, its sons 


have perished with stoicism in the dungeon, and looked scorn from 
the scaffold. The castles of the Geraldines stud the river banks and 
mountain glens of Munster, and few are the tales of fairy lore and 
weird romance in which some Fitzgerald does not play a conspicuous 
r6le. With the blood of this fiery clan in his veins, it is but natural 
that Mr. Fitzgerald should be ardently attached to the cause of Ire- 
land. From boyhood to the present moment he has supported every 
movement consecrated to Irish liberty, and there has hardly been an 
Irish convention which he has not attended. Unambitious for office,, 
with no personal views, but influenced by an earnest desire to see his- 
country enjoy the liberty so many of his race had died for, his time,. 
and his purse, and his quiet word of sound advice, were ever at the 
service of Ireland. The qualities of the man could hardly escape 
recognition, and in 1886 he was chosen President of the Irish National 
League of America. His period of office has been a troubled one,, 
great events having transpired during his administration ; but he has 
filled the position with honor to himself and to the Irish cause. His 
cool, conservative policy, his strong determination to keep the league 
free from political entanglements and from alliances that could in 
any way compromise the action of Parnell and his colleagues, has 
merited and received the warm approbation not only of the Irish lead- 
ers, but of the best friends of Ireland in America. To everything 
that can add to the welfare of the Irish cause, and to the benefit of 
his race, John Fitzgerald has been conspicuously generous. 

Mr. Fitzgerald is, in American politics, a strong Democrat, and a 
warm supporter of his party, bus has invariably refused to accept any 
political honors. From men of all shades of religious and political 
belief Mr. Fitzgerald receives the respect due to his strict integrity 
and his boundless energy. 

Fortunate in his business, he is equally blessed in his domestic life. 
Mrs. Fitzgerald is a most estimable lady, and as remarkable for her 
kind, unostentatious benevolence, as her husband is for his more active 
qualities. Their family consists of four children, and since their mar- 
riage no cloud has darkened the summer of their lives. 

John P. Sutton was born in Ireland in 1845, and came to this 
country in 1865. Mr. Sutton entered the army and was Post Sergeant 
Major of Fort Bridger, Wyoming, in 1866, and subsequently of Fort 



Sedgwick, Colorado, in 1868. When discharged he was First Sergeant 
of H Company, Eighteenth Infantry. Mr. Sutton was recommended 
by his superior officers to apply for a commission, but the great re- 
duction of the army at that time, and the prospect of continued peace, 
gave small encouragement to a young officer's hopes of advancement ; 
so Sergeant Sutton abandoned his military career after receiving the 
highest commendations from Col. Carrington, Lieut. Col. Mills, Major 
A. S. Burt, and other officers. His family had emigrated from Ireland 
to Canada in 1864, and his father filled a responsible position in the 


Union Bank of Lower Canada, in Quebec. Mr. Sutton rejoined his 
family with the intention of remaining only a short time, but smitten 
by the charms of a young Irish-Canadian lady, he married and settled 
down in Canada. He always considered himself an American citizen, 
and carefully eschewed all participation in Canadian politics. He was 
for several years accountant for Ross & Co., one of the greatest mer- 
cantile houses in Canada. Owing to his independence of all political 
parties, and his advocacy of the Irish cause, he was very popular witli 
his countrymen in Quebec, and was President of the Quebec branch 


of the league while he remained in that city. In 1885 he moved to 
Chicago, and while there was asked to return to Canada and stir up 
the Irishmen of the Dominion to active support of the cause. His 
efforts were rewarded with a large measure of success. In January, 
1886, he accepted the Secretaryship of the Irish National League dur- 
ing Mr. Egan's administration, but resigned in May of the same year 
to assume the position of Assistant Treasurer of the Fitzgerald & 
Mallory Construction Co., offered him by John Fitzgerald, who was 
General Manager and Treasurer of the company. At the Irish League 
convention of 1886, Mr. Sutton was unanimously reelected Secretary 
of the league, and returned to Lincoln in October of the same year, 
and has since resided here. Mr. and Mrs. Sutton have a family of 
four children. 

Hon. Patrick Egan, now Minister Plenipotentiary from the United 
States to the Republic of Chili, South America, was born at Bally- 
mahon county, Longford, Ireland, August 31, 1841. At the age of 
fourteen he entered the office of an extensive grain and milling firm 
in Dublin, and before he was twenty had been promoted to the post of 
chief bookkeeper and confidential man. Later he was elected man- 
aging director of this, as a stock company, it being the most extensive 
one in Ireland. He was, at the same time, senior partner in the most 
extensive bakery establishment in the county. He had been an indus- 
trious learner before going into business, and all this time took even- 
ing lessons of various instructors, and particularly of a brilliant young 
Episcopal minister of Dublin named Porte. 

His extensive and close connection with the business interests of 
the country brought him face to face with the terrible system of land- 
lord oppression and tyranny which was impoverishing the country 
and decimating the people, and as far back as 1863 he became an act- 
ive worker in the ranks of the advanced national party, taking his 
full share of all the labors and risks of the movement which brought 
about the attempted insurrection of 1867. In 1871, with Isaac Butt 
and others, Mr. Egan took an active part in founding the Home Rule 
League, and as one of the council of that body helped to spread the 
good work throughout the country. 

For ten years prior to the formation of the Land League, in 1879, 
Patrick Egan was regarded as if not the ablest at least one of the 
most important factors in the national movement in Ireland. 


All this time he was the close friend and confidant of the brilliant 
Isaac Butt, founder of the Home Rule movement; of John Martin, 
Professor Galbraith, Charles Stuart Parnell, and men of equal emi- 

When the Land League. was formed, in October, 1879, Patrick Egan 
was unanimously chosen one of its three trustees and its acting Treas- 
urer, and in December of that year he relinquished the management ot 
his large business entirely to his partners and threw himself into the 
work of the Land League relief fund, in which he labored almost night 
and day for months, distributing relief to the victims of landlord ex- 
tortion, besides performing much labor for the general amelioration 
of the agricultural, financial, and commercial, condition of the Irish 
people. Near the close of 1880, he, with twelve others, including 
Parnell, Dillon, Bigger, Sexton, Sullivan, Sheridan, and Harris, were 
singled out by the government for prosecution for alleged conspiracy. 
After a costly trial of sixteen days the jury stood ten for acquittal 
and two for conviction. The government did not dare arraign them 
again, but brought in a bill to suspend the habeas corpus act, and to 
permit the arrest of any one obnoxious to the government, intending 
to proscribe all members of the league. 

Messrs. Parnell, Dillon, Davitt, and other patriotic leaders, per- 
suaded Mr. Egan to go to Paris to prevent the government from con- 
fiscating the league funds. He took up his residence in Paris in 
February, 1881, and remained until the close of 1882. Much of this 
time the entire management and responsibility for the policy and acts 
of the league fell upon him, because the other members of the execu- 
tive committee were in English prisons. But he performed the work 
to the satisfaction of his colleagues, handling large sums of money 
and accounting for every cent, and so profitably investing it as to 
turn over to the league $26,000 in returns. For these three years he 
gave his time to the league without a cent of compensation. 

During the struggle from 1880 to 1882 Mr. Egan was frequently 
pressed to stand for parliament, in fact, was twice unanimously nomi- 
nated, once for Queen's county and again for county Meath, but he 
declined because he could not take the oath of allegiance to England 
required by the government. 

Learning that the English government was conspiring to arrest 
himself and colleague, and make him the victim of a pretended trial, 



he quietly removed to Holland, and then came to the United States 
and became a citizen of Lincoln, Neb. Here he settled down to his 
-accustomed grain business, but never lagged for a moment in his ac- 
tivity in defense of the cause of Ireland. 

He was one of three upon whose call was held the great Irish con- 
vention of April, 1883, at Philadelphia, at which the Land League 
was dissolved and the present Irish National League of America was 
founded, and at the next convention of the league, held in Boston, in 


1884, he was elected President, which office he held for two years. 
During his term of office the league in America was eminently suc- 
cessful. It sent to Ireland about $350,000, besides doing much to 
solidify the Irish element in this country. Under the rules of the 
league the President is entitled to a salary of $3,000 per year, but 
Mr. Egan returned, as a donation to the league fund, his two years' 
salary of $6,000. 

He was, all this time, an active and useful citizen of city, State, and 
nation. He espoused the principles of the Republican party, espe- 


cially with reference to the revenue policy of this country, regarding- 
the free-trade theories as certain to produce the same calamities to the- 
people of this nation as British free trade has brought upon Ireland. 
In May, 1888, he was elected delegate-at-Iarge to the National Re- 
publican Convention by a vote of 594 to 67, and was a conspicuous 
figure in that convention, declining the chairmanship in favor of Hon. 
John M. Thurston. 

But, perhaps, Mr. Egan's most brilliant achievement remains to- 
be told. The English Government and London Times had entered 
into a conspiracy to destroy Charles Stuart Parnell, and through 
him the cause of Ireland, by arraigning him before a prejudiced 
court on a false charge, based on letters forged by a man named 
Piggott, who had sold the forgeries to the Times for money. By a 
systematic comparison of Piggott's known writing and language with 
the forgeries, as well as by means of facts already known in part to 
Mr. Egan, he was enabled to weave such a demonstration of the 
forgeries that, at a critical moment in the trial, when the Tories 
almost felt sure of victory, Piggott was suddenly confronted with 
Mr. Egan's overwhelming proofs of his villainy. He confessed his 
iniquity, fled to Europe, and destroyed himself. Of course the case 
against Mr. Parnell fell to the ground, amid the derision of the . 
world. This culmination came about the first of the present year. 

He is the father of fourteen children, nine of whom are living, 
one daughter being married and a resident of Dublin. One of his- 
children was born in France, one in America, and the others in Ire- 
land. His residence in Lincoln has been at 1447 Q street. 



The Banks qf the City and Her Other Financial Institutions — Lin- 
coln as a Solid Financial Center op the State. 

The first bank of Lincoln was established in June, 1868, by 
James Sweet and N. C. Brock. Preceding chapters give a record of 
this bank and the gentlemen who conducted it, it being one of the 
most important and prominent of the early banking institutions of 
the State. This enterprise was not long allowed to occupy the field 

The First National Bank of Lincoln, southeast corner O and Tenth 
streets, established and chartered February 24, 1871, is the successor, 
so to speak, of a private bank founded a short time previously by 
Judge Amasa Cobb and J. F. Sudduth, Judge Cobb being President,, 
and Mr. Sudduth Cashier. Among the early stockholders of the First 
•National bank can be named Robert D. Silvers, E. E. Brown, A. L. 
Palmer, John Cadman, J. N. Eckman, "W. R. Field, Chester School- 
craft, Prof. J.' G. Miller; George W. Cobb, and W. P. Phillips. 
Judge Cobb was the first President of the bank after its incorporation, 
and J. F. Sudduth the first Cashier. In 1874 Messrs. John Fitz- 
gerald and John R. Clark bought an interest in the bank, and soon 
after this Mr. Fitzgerald was made President, and Mr. Clark Cashier, 
Mr. Sudduth being made Vice President, which place he held to the 
time of his death, which occurred in 1880. No change was made in 
the officers of the bank from that time until June, 1889, when Mr. 
Clark was made President, D. D. Muir Cashier, and C. S. Lippincott 
Assistant Cashier. Mr. Muir had previously been Assistant Cashier 
for a number of years. Since 1880 the management of the bank has- 
been almost entirely in the hands of Mr. Clark, and to his financial 
ability, and careful management is the success pf the institution chiefly 
due. As a matter of history, and showing the growth of business of 
the bank, a comparison of some figures from 1872, with the report of 
its condition on July 12, 1889, will be of especial interest. 



In 1872 the loans and discounts amounted to $87,177.63; IT, S. 
bonds, $50,000; together with other items making up total resources 
of $232,969.97. The liabilities at that time were: Capital stock, 
$50,000 ; surplus fund, $10,000; circulation, $45,000; deposits, $123,- 
865.76 ; and other items making the balance. 

On June 12, 1889, the official statement of the bank shows as fol- 
lows: Resources — Loans and discounts, $920,906.50; U. S. bonds, 
$50,000.00; real estate, $76,510.52; expenses and taxes, $2,221.69; 
cash and sight exchange, $345,153.39; total, $1,394,792.00. 


Liabilities — Capital stock, $200,000; surplus and profits, $72,- 
382.10; circulation, $45,000; deposits, $1,077,409.90; total, $1,394,- 

The present directors are John R. Clark, John Fitzgerald, J. D. 
McFarland, and D. D. Muir. 

The State National Bank, of Lincoln, is one of the oldest and most 
prosperous financial institutions of Nebraska. It was founded in 


1872, by the Richards Brothers, and was purchased by Messrs. E. E. 
Brown, K. K. Hayden, and others, in 1885, and reorganized. Since 
the second organization it has made constant progress in its business 
and in public favor. This will be perceived to be manifest when the 
fact is stated that in four years past it has doubled its capital, and 
more than doubled its business, notwithstanding the organization of 
five new banks in the city during that period. The confidence of the 
public in this excellent institution is exhibited in the very large aggre- 
gate sum of deposits its official statements now show. In this proof 
of public favor it has no superior in the State, all things considered. 

The success of the State National Bank doubtless rests upon the 
able business ability of its officers and directors, and their high char- 
acter as citizens. It is only necessary to refer to the names of these 
gentlemen to demonstrate that they are a very strong company, con- 
sidered in the light of long business experience in this community and 
State, unquestioned integrity, and their peculiar fitness for conducting 
the extensive financial affairs of the bank. 

Hon. E. E. Brown, President of the bank, has been identified with 
the city and its progress almost from the time Lincoln was founded. 
He was Mayor of the city in 1872, and was for years recognized as 
the most able attorney, and scarcely excelled in legal acquirements in 
the State. He was always distinguished for his very thorough busi- 
ness habits, his prudence and sagacity in business, and his financial 
success. He discontinued his law practice when he accepted the Pres- 
idency and a large share of the responsibility in the management of 
the bank, in order to give its affairs the more perfect attention. 

Hon. J. J. Imhoff is the Vice President of the State National Bank, 
and also one of the directors. Mr. Imhoff was a successful merchant 
and capitalist of Nebraska City before Lincoln was platted, in 1867, 
and was one of the leading founders of the city. He built up the 
Capital Hotel property from a value of $5,000 to a value of $115,000 
in fifteen years. He is one of the largest, most successful, and enter- 
prising capitalists of Lincoln, and one of the city's most useful and 
respected citizens. 

Hon. G. M. Lambertson, for eight years United States District 
Attorney for Nebraska, now serving his second term as the City Attor- 
ney for Lincoln, and one of the most able lawyers and business men 
•of the city, is also a director in this strong financial institution. Mr. 



Lambertson's personal integrity is too well established in Lincoln to 
require more than a mention. 

Another director, and also the Cashier of this bank is Mr. K. K. 
Harden, who is one of the most thorough business men in Nebraska. 
Mr. Hayden has built himself into his present honorable and respon- 
sible position by his unyielding courage, his tireless application to 
every detail of all business entrusted to his charge, and his inflexible 
adherence to strict business methods at all times. His personal career 
has been admirable as well as remarkable. He was born on a planta- 


tion in St. Mary's county, Maryland, in 1855, and was the child of 
luxury and the pet of his own slaves until the war totally ruined the 
family fortune and brought young Hayden to absolute poverty. After 
the war he sold papers on the streets of Baltimore, and earned his way 
by hard experience in other occupations. He came to Omaha in 1866, 
and in 1870 secured a position as bell boy in the First National Bank 
of Omaha, at a salary of $15 per month. Within five years, or when 
twenty years old, he was teller in that bank, and remained with the 
First National for eleven years. He then accepted the position of 


Assistant Cashier in the Nebraska National Bank of the same city, and 
held this position until he was appointed National Bank Examiner, 
by President Cleveland, in 1885, his district being Nebraska and 

His duties made him acquainted with the business prospects of Lin- 
coln, and the merits of the State National Bank of this city, and he 
resigned his. office as Bank Inspector, to accept the position of Cashier 
of this bank, a position he has held ever since. It is easy, therefore, 
to understand why the State National Bank is popular, and commands 
the respect of business men, with such thorough business men as the 
gentlemen named, with all their special training, on guard over the 
details of its business. 

The other directors of the bank, Messrs. Geo. McMillan, E. Finney, 
and H. L. Smith, though not so familiar to the people of Lincoln as 
some of the gentlemen named, are of scarcely less merit in financial or 
business standing, and their equal in personal integrity. Mr. C. E. 
Waite is the Assistant Cashier, and is a man who attends strictly to 
business, and has also had considerable banking experience, having 
resigned the cashiership of the First National Bank, Humboldt, Neb., 
to accept his present position with the State National Bank. 

No financial institution of Lincoln has shown a more constant growth 
than the Nebraska Savings Bank, now located at the southeast corner 
of O and Thirteenth streets, and no other bank in the city is more pro- 
gressive in adopting methods that contribute to the interests and ad- 
vantage of the people of the city and surrounding country. This bank 
was organized on July 20, 1886, and its deposits have grown from 
less than $2,000 on August 1, 1886, to about $85,000 on the same 
date in 1889. It does a general banking business. 

The management of the bank seeks to encourage habits of frugality 
and success among the people, and to this end has adopted a savings- 
bank department for the public schools of the city, similar to the sys- 
tem so successful in Europe and some of the Eastern States. In this 
course the Nebraska Savings Bank was in advance of all other banks 
in this State. The principle of this system is to open accounts with 
the school children and receive deposits of ten cents or more, upon 
which interest is paid at the rate of five per cent per annum, com- 
pounded semi-annually. This education in economy is carried on sys- 


tematically, by visiting the schools and seeing all the pupils, a growing 
number of whom are becoming regular depositors, thus inculcating fixed 
habits of saving and business, in a manner never to be eradicated dur- 
ing life, and which will be of great value to the pupils when they have 
grown to manhood and womanhood. The schools have regular de- 
posit days, and 1,500 children have opened accounts and deposited the 
large sum of $8,000, of which about $4,000 stands to their credit at 
this date. This feature of banking has the hearty approval of leading 
educators and the progressive public. 

The officers of the bank are : J. G. Southwick, President ; Rev. E. 
M. Lewis, Vice President; L. C. Humphrey, Cashier; W. E. Tay- 
lor, Assistant Cashier. Directors. — C. C. White, Merchant Miller, 
Crete, Neb.; J. G. Southwick, Banker, Bennett, Neb.; James Kil- 
burn, Capitalist, Lincoln; J. L. Miles, Banker, Omaha; George E. 
Bigelow, Real Estate Broker, Lincoln; D. L. Brace, Real Estate 
Broker, Lincoln ; L. G. M. Baldwin, President Baldwin Investment 
Company, Lincoln; C. T. Brown, Grain Dealer, Lincoln; L. C. Hum- 

The Capital National Bank, located on the southeast corner of O and 
Eleventh streets, is one of the most carefully-managed and successful 
banks in the city. It has a capital stock of $300,000. Of this bank 
C.W.Mosher is President; H.J. Walsh, Vice President; R. C. Out- 
calt, Cashier; and J. W. Maxwell, Assistant Cashier. 

The American Exchange Bank was incorporated on December 1, 
1888, and began business at the southeast corner of N and Eleventh 
streets, with a capital stock of $100,000. It is a carefully-managed 
institution and transacts a general banking business. Its officers are : 
I. M. Raymond, President"; Lewis Gregory, Vice President; S. H. 
Burnham, Cashier; and D. E. Wing, Assistant Cashier. 

The Lincoln Savings Bank Safe and Deposit Company was estab- 
lished on January 1, 1889, at the southeast coruer of P and Eleventh 
streets,with a capital of $250,000. Its specialty is the safe-deposit vault, 
built of twenty-seven tons of steel, containing 1,000 safes for custom- 
ers. This vault is both fire and burglar proof, and is the only one 
of its kind in the city. The officers of this bank are : Henry E. Lewis,. 
President and Manager ; A. P. S. Stewart, Vice President ; John H. 



MeClay, Treasurer; and R. Welch, Teller. The Directors are: A. 
P. S. Stewart, H. J. Walsh, Henry E. Lewis, John B. Wright, W. 
H. McCreery, Fred Williams, H. P. Lau, Wm. McLaughlin, and 
John H. McCleary. 

A solid and well-conducted institution of the city is the Lincoln 
National Bank, located in the Richards Block, on the northeast corner 






-T<3j.-j.Tr n r 


wmm\- - H I 


of Eleventh and streets. It transacts all forms of a banking busi- 
ness, and its prosperity grows steadily from year to year. It was or- 
ganized in August of 1882. Its present capital is $100,000, and its 
surplus is $35,000. Its officers now are : Nathan S. Harwood, Presi- 
dent ; R. E. Moore, Vice President ; C. T. Boggs, Cashier ; and Frank 
M. Cook, Assistant Cashier. 


The Union Savings Bank, at 111 South Tenth street, was incorpo- 
rated under the laws of the State April 26, 1886, and has been very 
successful. Its capital stock is $200,000, and the liabilities of the 
stockholders are $400,000. Its deposits amount to $180,000. Its 
officers are : R. E. Moore, President ; E. E. Brown, Vice President ; 
C. H. Imhoff, Cashier ; and the Board of Directors — John Fitzger- 
ald, C. E. Yates, R. E. Moore, E. E. Brown, T. E. Calvert, J. J. Im- 
hoff, John R. Clark, K. K. Hayden, and J. McConniff. 

One of the oldest existing financial institutions in Lincoln is the 
Lancaster County Bank, located at 117 South Tenth street. It was 
organized about nineteen years ago, now enjoys a large business, and 
is in a sound condition, its capital being $50,000 and its surplus $17,- 
000. Its present officers are : W. J. Lamb, President ; W. A. Green, 
Vice President ; and E. B. Green, Cashier. 

A prominent financial institution of Lincoln is the German Na- 
tional Bank, located in the Burr Block, at Twelfth and O streets. It 
was established on December 10, 1886, and has steadily grown in 
public favor. It has a paid-in capital of $100,000, and a surplus of 
$20,000, and transacts a general banking business, making a specialty 
of foreign collections. Its officers are : Herman H. Schaberg, Presi- 
dent; C. C. Munson, Vice President ; Joseph Boehmer, Cashier; and 
O. J. Wilcox, Assistant Cashier. The Directors are : Messrs. Herman 
H. Schaberg, C. C. Munson, Joseph Boehmer, C. E. Montgomery, 
Alex. Halter, F. A. Boehmer, B. J. Brotherton, Walter J. Harris, 
and J. A. Hudelson. 

The Lincoln Loan and Trust Company is located in the basemen; 
of the Richards Block. It was organized in 1884, and is officered as 
follows: N. S. Harwood, President; W. G. Houtz, Vice President; 
C. T. Boggs, Treasurer ; and Joseph Kelly, Manager. The Directors 
are : J. E. Houtz, John H. Ames, and W. R. Kelly. 

The Capital Loan and Investment Company is located on the sixth 
floor of the Burr Block. It was organized May 1, 1889, makes a 
specialty of building loans, and has a growing business. It has a 
corps of officers as follows : J. T. Englehardt, President ; W. W. W. 
Jones, Vice President ; A. J. Millikin, Treasurer ; H. F. Albers, Sec- 
retary ; and S. B. Pound, Attorney. 


The Baldwin Investment Company, at 106 South Thirteenth street, 
Is a new and popular financial concern, incorporated on June 1, 1889. 
It was organized for the purpose of buying and selling commercial 
paper and other negotiable securities, including real estate mortgages. 
It has an authorized capital of $100,000, and a paid-in capital of $50,- 
■000. Its business is conducted with great prudence, the management 
having adopted the plan of loaning only on "two-name" paper, run- 
ning not longer than eight months. In all cases they require written 
-statements as to financial condition from the makers of paper, who 
must also have good commercial rating and a reputation for prompt 
paying. This plan carried out will insure to the company first-class 
securities to offer to its Eastern correspondents. The Board of Direct- 
ors, who pass upon all loans, have had years of experience in loaning 
in Lincoln, and are competent judges as to the quality of paper of- 
fered. Its real estate loans are all made on not to exceed forty per cent 
of a conservative valuation, with insurance policy assigned with mort- 
gages, or additional security, making this class of investments per- 
fectly safe. The company invests its own funds in all paper offered 
-for sale and guarantees payment at maturity. Its business has been 
very successful to date, it being large and growing constantly. Its 
•officers are: Le Grand M. Baldwin, President; L. C. Humphrey, 
^ice President; and A. H. Humphrey, Secretary and Treasurer. 

The Security Investment Company is located in rooms 1, 2 and 3, 
<on the second floor of the Richards Block, corner of O and Eleventh 
streets. It was organized February 1, 1886, and has since been very 
prosperous, now having over $5,000,000 loaned in Nebraska. It 
=also buys municipal bonds. Its officers are: R. E. Moore, President; 
•John Moore, Vice President; T. W. Moore, Secretary and Treas- 
urer. Its capital is $100,000. 

The Clark & Leonard Investment Company, with offices in the 
Eirst National Bank building, at Tenth and O streets, was organ- 
ized October 1, 1886, and is one of the excellent institutions of the 
kind in Lincoln. It does a large business in mortgage loans, bonds, 
«nd other securities, having a capital of $200,000. Its officers are : 
fm. M. Clark, President; J. W. McDonald, Secretary; and Wm. 
JVC. Leonard, Treasurer. 


One of the most prosperous financial institutions in the city, prob- 
ably because one of the most carefully managed, is the Farmers & 
Merchants Insurance Company. As its name indicates its risks are 
mainly confined to the property of prudent merchants and good farm- 
ers, and for that reason its financial condition continues to improve- 
from year to year. 

It was organized on July 2, 1885. According to law it made to- 
the Auditor of State its first annual statement on December 31, 1885,, 
as follows : 


First mortgage loans and accrued interest $19,506.54^ 

Bills receivable and accrued interest 13,558.41 

Office Furniture and all other property .777.98 

Cash in bank and company's office 23,488.54 

Cash premiums in course of collection 1,028.35- 

Stockholders' secured notes 50,000.00- 

Total 1108,359.82: 


Stock $100,000.00" 

Reserve for reinsurance, per law 7,604.14 

Liabilities 641.25- 

Net Surplus 114 43 


The business of the Company steadily progressed, and in a manner 
most favorable to the success of the management of the company's- 
affairs, as the exhibit of its condition reported to the State Auditor,, 
under oath, on December 31, 1888, will show, when compared with 
the like statement of December 31, 1885: 


First mortgage loans and accrued interest $65,263. 90" 

Premium bills received and accrued interest 77,354.82 

Bills received and interest secured by chattel mortgages 1,905.04 

Cash in bank and company's office 24,133.63- 

Cash premiums in course of collection 9,405.61 

Office furniture and other property 1,279.06- 

Stockholder's secured notes 50,000.00- 

Total $229,342.0$ 



Capital stock $100,0uu.0O 

Reserve for reinsurance required by law 97,816.15 

Liabilities 1,K16,15 

Surplus 29,6H4.5£ 

Total $229,342.06 

Or recapitulating the statements of the four years, we have the fol- 
lowing very flattering exhibit : 

Premiums Received. Losses. 

1885 $21,903.47 $704.84 

1886 76,001.25 6,740.85 

1887 95,97268 16,183.75 

1888 108,153.98 20,068.25 

Totals -. $302,031.38 $43,697.69 

Another feature of peculiar merit connected with this company's 
business policy is that it discards the technical delays in paying losses,, 
which are so aggravating and injurious. It has paid losses within 
twenty-four hours after the fires occurred, and seldom allows a delay 
of over three or four days in paying a loss. This reform has woo 
it much popular favor. 

The officers for the present year are : D. E. Thompson, President ;. 
H. J. Walsh, Vice President; S. J. Alexander, Secretary; C. W 
Mosher, Treasurer. 

Dun's Commercial Agency is represented by a local office in the 
First National Bank block, by Frank D. Blish. This office was es- 
tablished in 1882, and is one of the best conducted institutions of the 

An office of Bradstreet's Commercial Agency was opened in the 
State National Bank building during the present year, of which H. 
C. Patterson is the accommodating manager. 



The Press of Lincoln — As in Other Things, so in Newspapers, Does 
Lincoln Stand at the Front — The Papers That Have Been and 
are and the men who publish them. 

Lincoln has been fortunate in many particulars, and among others 
in having good newspapers. A good newspaper is a standing adver- 
tisement to the outside world that a good town is behind it, and this 
has been the only advertisement that Lincoln has ever had. 

On the 14th of August, 1867, the Commissioners for the location ot 
the seat of government for the State of Nebraska, selected and offi- 
cially announced Lincoln, up to that time the town of "Lancaster," 
as the place. On the following day there appeared in the columns of 
the Nebraska City Press a prospectus for the publication of a weekly 
newspaper at Lincoln, to be called the Nebraska Commonwealth, over 
the signature of C. H. Gere. On the 7th day of September, the first 
■copy of the new paper was printed at the office of the Press, there 
being at that time no accommodations for a newspaper office at the 
new capital. " C. H. Gere & Co." were the announced publishers. 

On November 2d, the second number of the Commonwealth was 
issued at Lincoln, printed in the office of Hon. S. B. Galey, a stone 
building on the north side of the Government square, W. W. Carder, 
publisher, and C. H. Gere, editor. It was a seven-column sheet, of 
dingy appearance, the type being some old primer and nonpareil taken 
from the used-up material of the Nebraska City Press ; the press used 
being the first "Washington" ever brought across the Missouri river 
into Nebraska territory. 

Before the third number was issued (and it came out two weeks 
later) the Commonwealth had moved into an office of its own, a stone 
building of small dimensions on the corner lot of the Academy of 
Music block, which was torn down several years ago to make way for 
improvements. The issues thereafter were regular, except when some 
accident of transportation prevented the arrival of printing paper in 
time for the press. 


In the May following, Mr. Gere, who had edited the paper from 
Omaha, removed permanently to Lincoln, and became associated with 
Mr. Carder in the business management of the paper, and the office 
was soon after removed to more roomy quarters over Jas. Sweet & 
Brock's bank, in the corner of what is now termed "Union block." 
In the spring of '69, the |name of the paper was changed to the Ne- 
braska State Journal. 

In November of that year Mr. Carder was succeeded by Mr. J. Q. 
Brownlee, and shortly after the office, still in search of more room, 
was taken across O street, and occupied the second floor of the frame 
building second door east of the State block. 

On the 20th day of July, 1870, the day on which the Burlington 
& Missouri River Railroad ran its first train into Lincoln, and struck 
death to the stage line that had been the only means of transportation 
to the capital of Nebraska, the Daily State Journal first saw the light. 

A daily edition had prior to this time been worked off on the hand 
press, during the session of the Legislature in the winter of '69 and 
'70, but it contained little more than the summary of legislative pro- 
ceedings, and some local items. 

A new Taylor cylinder press had been added to the Journal ma- 
chinery, and after a dozen years of continual faithful service, it gave 
way to the largest size, two-revolution, Cottrell press, with all mod- 
ern improvements, including folder. 

Still crowded for room, owing to its rapid growth, the Journal 
office in the spring of '71 returned to the State block, took possession 
of the rooms over Rudolph's grocery house, that had just been ex- 
tended fifty feet in the rear, making its quarters 25x100, and amply 
sufficient for its accommodation. Shortly after, Mr. Brownlee dis- 
posed of his interest to Hon. H. D. Hathaway, of the Plattsmouth 
Herald, taking an interest in the Herald as part payment, and the 
firm name became Gere & Hathaway. 

In the fall of 1872 a separation was made between the newspaper 
and the job business, and the State Journal Company was organized, 
the members being Messrs. Gere & Hathaway, and Messrs. A. H. 
Mendenhall and Geo. W. Roberts, of Peoria, 111., Mr. Mendenhall 
having long been the foreman of the Transcript office, and the latter, 
the proprietor of a bindery and blank book establishment in that city. 

A large addition of material and machinery for book and job print- 



ing, bindery, and blank book making, was made to the old job de- 
partment of the Journal, and again more room had to be obtained. 
The second stories of the five buildings, known as Commercial block, 
on the southwest corner of Government square, were connected by a 
common hall, and after some alterations, nearly the whole of the 
upper half of the block was taken, part for the State Journal com- 
pany, and part for the newspaper, still owned and published by Gere 
& Hathaway. 


In 1887, Mr. Roberts having sold his interest in the Journal 
company to Mr. John R. Clark, and it having been incorporated under 
the laws of the State, Messrs. Gere & Hathaway transferred the news- 
paper to the company. 

The officers of the company are: C. H. Gere, President; A. H. 
Mendenhall, Vice President; John R. Clark, Secretary, and H. D. 
Hathaway, Treasurer. 

The beginning of the year 1882, found the State Journal company 
in the occupancy of their handsome and spacious new building, sit- 
uated upon the corner of P and Ninth streets. This building is a 


substantial stone and brick structure, three stories and basement, with 
a frontage of 75 feet on P street, and 142 feet on Ninth street. The 
ground was broken in June, 1880, and the various departments ready 
for occupancy the first of December, 1881. 

Prior to this last removal into its own quarters, the company had 
added a small line of stationery for its jobbing trade. This depart- 
ment has reached such proportions that it now occupies one-third of 
the building — the part that was for a time rented. Its mechanical 
and artistic departments have also grown in the same proportions. A 
dozen steam presses are used for its job and book work. Its bindery 
is the largest and completest in the west. 

To its thoroughly equipped electrotyping and stereotyping depart- 
ment, it has added a very complete engraving and lithographing es- 
tablishment, which is employed to its full capacity in furnishing 
Nebraska work to Nebraskans. The two-revolution Cottrell press has 
been sent to the job-rooms, and the Journal has for some time been 
printed on a Hoe perfecting press, with a capacity of 10,000 double 
sheets per hour, delivered folded to the hands of the mailers and news- 

The volume of the business of the Journal Company, in all its de- 
partments, reached, in 1882, the first year of its occupancy of its own 
building, $130,000. For the fiscal year ending July 15, 1889, it 
amounted to $288,306.31. It paid for labor during those twelve 
months an aggregate of $105,176.53, a fraction over $2,000 per week. 
Its freight bills for the year amounted to $7,318.79. 

The history of the democratic press of Lincoln is a varied one. 
Democratic newspapers have had a precarious existence, and have 
•changed names and owners frequently. In 1867 the Nebraska States- 
man was founded by Augustus Harvey as a weekly. It was sold 
within eighteen months to Randall & Smails, who changed it from a 
weekly to an evening daily. Owing to Randall's mismanagement, the 
concern broke financially, and the material went into the Fremont 
Tribune office. About 1878 General Vifquain founded the State Dem- 
ocrat, which also changed hands frequently. Among the prominent 
Democrats who have had control of the paper may be mentioned Hon. 
Albert Watkins, Hon. A. J. Sawyer, and Hon. J. W. Barnhart. 
Ohanges continued to occur until August 1, 1886, when the property 


passed into the hands of J. D. Calhoun, who successfully conducted 
the paper for twenty-three months. On July 1, 1888, Mr. Calhoun 
sold out to the "Call Publishing Company," which changed its poli- 
tics. In the following August, Messrs. J. A. Emmons and Sol. 
Oppenheimer purchased an outfit and established the Weekly State 
Democrat, which is yet in publication and enjoys a good circulation 
and fair patronage. Mr. Oppenheimer soon sold his interest to Capt. 
Emmons, who is now the editor, the publishers being the Democrat' 
Publishing Company. The Democrat is ably edited, and is earnest in 
its support of party principles and in pushing Lincoln to the front. 

On July 1, 1888, was issued the first number of the Lincoln Daily 
Call, as an evening paper, by the " Call Publishing Company." Of 
this company H. M. Bushnell is President, Sam D. Cox Secretary, 
Treasurer, and Business Manager, and Al. Fairbrother, Managing 
Editor. Under the management of these three gentlemen the Call 
has grown rapidly in circulation and influence. It is Republican in 
politics, although free to criticise where criticism is thought to be- 

Few business enterprises of the city have grown more rapidly than 
the Lincoln News plant. Beginning as a very small job office, in 
1880, by Mr. E. B. Hyde, it has now expanded into a large printing 
house, including an excellent book bindery, facilities for stereotyping, 
and two newspaper and a number of job presses. The Daily News- 
was first published on the 26th of October, 1881, as a four column 
folio, the day of President Garfield's funeral, by Mr. T. H. Hyde, 
who actively joined his son, E. B. Hyde, in the business at that time,, 
and has been the main factor in the enterprise ever since. The paper 
was started to contribute to the business interests of the job depart- 
ment. The winter of 1881-2 was one of commercial activity, and the- 
News prospered, so that early in the spring of 1882 the daily was en- 
larged to a five-column folio, and advanced to a six-column folio late 
in the fall of that year. The News continued to grow, and in 1885 
Mr. Walter Hoge became interested in the business, and the firm became 
Hyde, Hoge & Hyde. The pressure of patronage required another en- 
largement of the News in 1887, when it became a seven-column folio. 
About the first of the year 1888 a stock company was formed called 


the "Lincoln News Company," and it so continues to the present 
time, with Messrs. Thomas H. Hyde and E. B. Hyde as the leading 
stockholders. The daily was again enlarged in the fall of 1888 to an 
eight-column folio. Mr. Hoge retired from the company during the 
summer of 1888. Mr. Harry Dobbins became connected with the edi- 
torial department in 1888, and he and Mr. T. H. Hyde do the main 
editorial work, Mr. Hyde being managing editor. Mr. E. B. Hyde 
is manager of the mechanical and business departments. 

The News Company now occupies three floors of the brick building 
at 121-3 North Tenth street. The daily is steadily increasing its cir- 
culation and business, and the weekly News has a large circulation 
among the people of the county. Altogether the News establishment 
is the largest printing house, except that of the Journal, in the South 
Platte section of Nebraska. 

The first German newspaper published in the city of Lincoln was 
called the Staats-Zeitung, and was owned and edited by Dr. F. Renner, 
now of Nebraska City. The doctor, a well educated man and strong Re- 
publican, started the Staats-Zeitung in 1.871, and made a strong fight 
for General Grant's reelection in 1872. The Staats-Zeitung was after- 
ward moved to Nebraska City, where it is now published by Mr. 

The Germans of the city of Lincoln, feeling the necessity of having 
an organ in their own language, contributed, in the year 1880, a large 
sum of money, and guaranteed a good patronage, to Peter Karberg, 
who was known as an old and experienced newspaper man in Du- 
buque. He moved to Lincoln in the month of May, 1880, and pub- 
lished the first number of his Nebraska Staats-Anzeiger on June 1st, 
1880. Karberg's experience and energy soon made the Staats-Anzeiger 
one of the best and most influential German papers in the State. The 
early death of Mr. Karberg, on July 2, 1884, made the sale of his 
paper necessary, and Mr. Henry Briigmann became the successor of 
Mr. Karberg. Financial troubles caused the foreclosure and sale of 
the Staats-Anzeiger in October, 1887. The creditors bought the ma- 
terial, and after disposing of the job department formerly connected 
with the paper, sold it to Schaal & Esser, who now continue its pub- 
lication. The Anzeiger was a strong advocate of Republican princi- 
ples under its first two proprietors, who themselves were strong party 


men. The present publishers are Democrats, and the paper has no 
avowed policy. 

The Lincoln Freie Presse is the youngest, but the most successful, 
German paper, not only in the city of Lincoln, but in the whole State 
of Nebraska. Its publisher and editor, Major J. D. Kluetsch, is one 
of the best-known Germans of our State. Being one of. the oldest citi- 
zens of our city, Mr. Kluetsch knows the wants of our German popu- 
lation, and publishes just such a paper as is demanded and needed. 
The Lincoln Freie Presse, a seven-column, eight page weekly, was 
first published on September 1st, 1884, by G. Z. Bluedhorn, who sold 
it on February 15, 1886, to its present owner, Mr. J. D. Kluetsch. 
It has now the largest circulation of any German paper in the State. 
Its circulation is unlimited among the German residents of this and 
adjoining States, and it accordingly enjoys a very large advertising 
patronage. Independent in politics, tolerant in religious matters, and 
fearless, though true, in matters pertaining to the welfare of our city 
and State, the Freie Presse has done more than any other German 
paper to build up the State of Nebraska and city of Lincoln. The 
history of Lincoln, written by the Freie Presse in the German lan- 
guage, in a series of twenty-eight able articles, has advertised our city 
all over the United States, and also abroad, and Mr. Kluetsch and his 
paper have been highly commended for the enterprise shown by these 
articles. John D. Kluetsch, editor and publisher of this paper, was 
born on the 22d day of March, 1833, in a town called Uelmen, near 
Coblentz, on the river Rhine, in the kingdom of Prussia. After pass- 
ing the primary schools of his town, he studied at the gymnasiums at 
Recklinghausen, in Westphalia, and at Coblentz and Trier, in the 
province of Rhenish Prussia. The gymnasium at Trier, (no doubt 
the oldest city in Western Europe, and at one time the residence of 
Constantine the Great,) was always considered one of the best schools 
in Germany. After graduating, Mr. Kluetsch visited the University 
of Bonn, and the Academy of Forestry at Eisenach, the city in which 
Martin Luther was held as a prisoner, and where he translated the 
Bible. Having finished his studies, Mr. Kluetsch entered the Prussian 
Army as a one year volunteer in the Eighth Prussian Sharpshooters' 
Battallion, at Wetzlar, near Giessen, the well-known German university. 
After this we find Mr. Kluetsch at the city of Cologne, where he re_ 


mained in the government's employ, with the exception of a few 
months during the Franco-Austrian war, in 1859, when he joined 
the Prussian army again, until he emigrated to this country, in 
May, 1861, shortly after the breaking out of the rebellion. Mr. 
Kluetsch enlisted as a private in the Eighty-second Illinois Volun- 
teers, and received many promotions for his bravery and good be- 
havior. He served on the staffs of Generals O. O. Howard and Carl 
Schurz, and took part in some of the hardest-fought battles of our 
last war; for instance, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, 
Mission Ridge, and Lookout Mountain. After leaving the army, 
Mr. Kluetsch moved to Chicago, where he held a number of positions 
in the postal service, and in the recorder's office as map clerk. He 
was elected collector of taxes for West Chicago in 1870, and reelected 
in 1871, and moved to Lincoln on the 1st of May, 1872. Here he 
followed several vocations, until the 15th day of February, 1886, 
when he purchased the Lincoln Freie Presse, of which paper he is the 
sole owner. 

The Hausbemcher (Home Visitor) is another German paper pub- 
lished in this city by Eev. Chr. Bruegger, pastor of the German 
Methodist Church, corner of Fifteenth and M streets, under the au- 
spices of this church. It was founded by Eev. Karl Harris, the for- 
mer pastor, on June 1, 1881. Its circulation is largely among the 
members of the above church, and reaches about 300 copies. 

The Capital City, Courier was started with an office desk, but now 
has one of the finest and most complete newspaper and job printing 
establishments in the State. The Courier was established by its present 
proprietor, Mr. L. Wessel jr., December 9, 1885. By successive en- 
largements the Courier grew from a four to a six-column folio. At 
the end of six months it blossomed out as a full-fledged newspaper, 
and charged a subscription price. For the State Fair, of 1887, the 
proprietor published an edition of 10,000 copies, each eight pages of 
six columns, and the paper has continued that size ever since. It is 
one of that class of journals known in the West as "society papers," 
but it also has full and carefully edited departments devoted to the 
drama, literature, sport, fashions, humor, music, religion, woman, 
home architecture, and correspondence, besides chatty comments on 
politics and other current events. 


Iii connection with the paper a department for the prosecution of 
the artistic in printing and publishing is maintained. The offices are 
on Twelfth street, in the new Burr block, where two store-rooms are 
occupied, one for the Courier and business department and the other 
for the composing and press-rooms. 

Believing that there was an opening in the city for a first-class dis- 
tinctive Sunday morning paper, the Sunday Morning Globe was 
brought into existence, in April, 1889, the publishers and editors be- 
ing W. L. Hunter, late of Illinois, and J. C. Seacrest, who had been 
for two years identified with the newspaper business of the city. The 
Globe is an eight-page, six-column paper, independent in politics, and 
devoted especially to the interests of society, secret fraternities, sports, 
and city events touching the interests of the masses. It aims to be a 
people's paper. The business is done in the name of the Globe Pub- 
lishing Company. The office of the company is located in the Wind- 
sor block. The daily Globe was started September 28, 1889. 

The first agricultural paper published in Lincoln, the Nebraska 
Farmer, was established in 1872, by General J. C. McBride and J. C. 
Clarkson, now of Chicago. At the time this publication was estab- 
lished, the farming and live-stock interests of Nebraska amounted to 
very little; they were too young to support a paper published in their 
interest. But the main reason for the establishment of the paper 
was to promote, by its influence, the success of certain land deals in 
the State in connection with a railway project of that early day. In 
1880, however, the farming and live-stock interests of the State had 
grown to larger proportions, making the field of an agricultural paper 
broader and more lucrative. In that year General McBride pur- 
chased his partner's interest in the journal and conducted it alone for 
some time, when he sold an interest in the paper to O. M. Druse. 
Soon after this transaction General McBride was appointed post- 
master, and the entire paper became the property of Mr. Druse. At 
this time the Farmer was a monthly publication. In January, 1887, 
L. L. Siler, of Lawrence, Kas., and H. E. Heath, of Kansas City, 
purchased the paper of Mr. Druse, who had been running it for some 
time as a semi-monthly. 

The new firm soon changed it to a weekly publication. In Janu- 
ary, 1888, Mr. Siler sold his three-fifths interest to his partner, H. 


E. Heath, who in the following spring took his brother, H. A. 
Heath, a practical farmer from Western Nebraska, into partnership, 
since which time the firm has remained unchanged. The Nebraska 
Farmer is recognized as the leading farm journal published in the 
West. It is ably edited, and has a large force of contributors and 
correspondents, made up of men who have practical knowledge of 
the things about which they write. It has an extensive circulation 
through Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, and other Western States. 

In the fall of 1886, Colonel H. S. Reed and Ex-Governor Robert 
W. Furnas established a monthly journal called Western Resources, 
the first number of which was issued in January, 1887.- In the fall of 
1887 Colonel Reed purchased the interest of Governor Furnas, and 
continued to conduct the paper as a monthly until January 1, 1889, 
when the form of the paper was changed, as was also the time of pub- 
lication. It is now issued three times per month, viz: on the 10th, 
20th, and 30th. 

At the time Western Resources was established it was made a gen- 
eral farm paper, but when Colonel Reed became sole proprietor he 
changed policy and made the paper exclusively a live-stock journal, 
devoted to the live-stock interests of the State. Since the paper has 
been conducted on this line of policy, more live-stock organizations 
have been formed in the State than ever before, for which Colonel 
Reed is mainly responsible. Western Resources is without a peer in, 
its line in the West, and is acknowledged to occupy second place 
among the live stock journals of the entire country. Its circulation 
is about 10,000 copies, and it is the official organ of the following 
associations, which shows that it is appreciated by the men in whose 
interest it is published : Nebraska Draft Horse Breeders' Association ; 
Trotting Horse Breeders' Association ; Hereford Breeders' Associa- 
tion ; Imported Stock Breeders' Association, and the Association of 
Expert Judges of Swine. 

The Nebraska State Laborer was established in August, 1888, by 
the organized workingmen of this city, and is published under the 
auspices of their principal organization, the Central Trades and Labor 
Union. It earnestly champions the cause of the workingmen, and 
ably advocates all measures which tend to ameliorate the condition of 
the laboring masses and elevate them to a higher plane of usefulness 


and enjoyment. It has grown rapidly in popular favor, and is exer- 
cising a wide influence among that class to whose interest it is devoted. 
It is edited by B. S. Littlefield, a former well-known teacher in Lilli- 
bridge & Roose' s business college. 

There are at this time twenty-six periodicals published in Lincoln. 
Besides those referred to at greater length, may be mentioned, more 
or less in detail, the following additional publications : The Nebraska 
Methodist, published at Wesleyan University, in the interest of that 
institution and Nebraska Methodism generally ; the Hesperian is the 
organ of the students of the State University ; the Proscenium is a 
theatrical sheet, issued in the interests of Funke's Opera House; the 
Congregational News, by Rev. H. A. French, is a journal devoted to 
the interests of the Congregational Church; the Lincoln Monthly, by 
Messrs. Lillibridge & Roose, represents the interests of the Lincoln 
Business College; the New Republic is the organ of the Prohibition 
party in the State, of which Hon. W. H. Hardy is now the -editor ; 
the Western Workman, by Professor F. F. Roose, is the Western or- 
gan of the Ancient Order of United Workmen; the Lincoln Jour- 
nal of Commerce, is a monthly price current, published in the interests 
of the city jobbing trade, and for other business purposes ; the Ne- 
braska Railway Gazetteer, by Professor F. F. Roose, is a monthly 
periodical devoted to western railway affairs; the Daily Stock Dealer 
is a daily published by Mr. Walter Hoge for the benefit of the Lin- 
coln Stock Yards, Packing and Provision Company, and the stock 
dealers of this vicinity ; the Home News is a little folio in the interests 
of the Home for the Friendless ; the Farmers' Alliance is a monthly, 
designed to represent the association of farmers by that name; the 
Lincoln Newspaper Union is the trade journal of the Lincoln news- 
paper ready-print supply and publishing house, managed by Mr. 
Frank Rohm ; this house also prints the Nebraska State Capital, a 
story paper; Modern Bookkeeping, by Lillibridge & Roose, is pub- 
lished in the interests of accountants and students. 

The Cherrier Directory Publishing Company, of which A. B. 
Cherrier and N. Hall are the members, has for two years past pub- 
lished city directories which are better arranged, more convenient of 
reference, and more complete, than any directory before published. 



Incarceration of the City Council— A Memorable Occurrence in the 
City's History— A Sketch of the Proceedings, and a Legal His- 
tory of the Case. 

In the fall of 1887, the Mayor and eleven members of the City 
Council were imprisoned in the county jail of Douglas county for al- 
leged contempt of the Circuit Court of the United States, District of 
Nebraska. The following is a brief statement of the facts which oc- 
casioned this extraordinary action on the part of the Federal Court : 

Sometime in the month of August certain parties, gamblers in the 
city of Lincoln, preferred charges in writing with the Council, against 
Albert F. Parsons, Police Judge, alleging that he had been guilty of 
malfeasance in office, in that he had not accounted for moneys collected 
by him as fines as required by law. These charges were the result of 
a warfare made upon the gambling fraternity of the city by the newly- 
elected Mayor, A. J. Sawyer, and the Marshal and police appointed 
by him. In compliance with the request of the persons making the 
charges, a committee of the Council was appointed to investigate the 
charges. The committee met, and after hearing much testimony pro 
and con, reported to the Council that in their opinion the charges were 
true, and that the Police Judge had not paid over to the Treasurer all 
the money by him received, and recommended that his office be de- 
clared vacant, and that a successor be appointed by the Mayor. The 
ordinance then in force relating to removal of city officers not pro- 
viding for trial by a committee of less than the whole of the Council, 
it was amended, and the committee's report again filed. 

While the resolution declaring the office vacant was pending, Mr. 
Parsons appeared with his attorney, Mr. L. C. Burr, and requested 
that action be delayed until a certain day, when the evidence could be 
read and counsel heard before the whole Council, stating that if this 
was done they would be satisfied with the action of the Council in the 
premises. Their request was acceded to, and a day fixed as desired. 


Before that day arrived, however, Mr. Parsons had obtained from 
Judge Brewer, of the United States Circuit Court, an order restraining 
the Mayor and Council from taking further action in the premises 
until he could hear and determine the matter. After careful consid- 
eration, and after taking advice of counsel, the Mayor and Council 
became satisfied that the restraining order was made without authority 
of law, and was of no binding force or effect. They accordingly dis- 
regarded it, and proceeded to declare the office of Police Judge vacant, 
and the Mayor appointed and the Council confirmed Mr. H. J. Whit- 
more as Police Judge to fill the vacancy. 

The action of the city officials was at once brought to the attention 
of the court, and an order entered, requiring the Mayor and Council to 
appear and show cause why they should not be punished for contempt. 

At the appointed time the parties appeared and presented their 
reasons for violating the injunction, and averred that the court was 
without jurisdiction to issue the same, and that consequently they 
were under no obligations to obey it. Judge Brewer, however, held 
that his order was properly issued, and adjudged the defendants guilty 
of contempt, and sentenced Mayor Sawyer, and Councilmen Briscoe, 
Burks, Cooper, Pace, and Dean, to pay a fine of fifty dollars each, 
and Councilmen Billingsley, Graham, Hovey, Ensign, Fraas, and 
Dailey, to pay a fine of six hundred dollars each. One and all de- 
clared their intention to suffer imprisonment rather than pay the fine 
imposed, and they were accordingly taken in charge by the United 
States Marshal, and confined in the Douglas county jail. 

Their attorney, Hon. G. M. Lambertson, had in the meantime pre- 
pared the proper papers for an application to the Supreme Court of 
the United States for a writ of habeas corpus, and took the first train 
for the city of Washington and made his application in person to Jus- 
tice Miller. The writ was immediately issued as prayed, and after a 
week of imprisonment, the Lincoln city government was once more 
at liberty. The application for a writ of habeas corpus was most 
elaborately argued in the Supreme Court, and great interest was man- 
ifested in the case by the legal fraternity and public generally. Jan- 
uary 12, 1888, the decision of the Supreme Court was announced, 
and with but two exceptions, the judges united in declaring the im- 
prisonment unlawful, and ordering the release of the prisoners. The 
legal aspect of the case was as follows : 


It was contended by the petitioners that the Circuit Court of the 
United States, sitting as a court of equity, had no jurisdiction and au- 
thority to make the order under which they were held by the Marshal. 

On this point the court said : "The office and jurisdiction of a court 
of equity, unless enlarged by express statute, are limited to the pro- 
tection of rights of property. It has no jurisdiction over the prosecu- 
tion, the punishment, or the pardon, of crimes or misdemeanors, or 
■over the appbintment and removal of public officers, or to sustain a 
bill in equity to restrain or relieve against proceedings for the pun- 
ishment of offenses, or for the removal of public officers, is to invade 
the domain of the courts of common law, or of the executive and ad- 
ministrative department of the Government." 

The court then reviewed the petition of Mr. Parsons upon which 
the restraining order was granted. The matters of law stated in that 
bill as grounds for the intervention of the Circuit Court were that the 
amended ordinance was an ex-post-faoto law, and that all the proceedings 
of the City Council and its committee, as well as both ordinances, were 
illegal and void, and in conflict with and in violation of those articles 
■of the Constitution of the United States which provide that no person 
shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of 
law ; that in all criminal prosecutions the accused shall enjoy the right 
to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the State and dis- 
trict where the crime shall have been committed, and to have compul- 
sory process for obtaining witnessess in his favor, and that no State 
shall pass any ex-post-fado law, or deprive any person of life, liberty, 
or property, without due process of law, or deny to any person within 
its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. The court held that 
the articles which. provide that no person shall be deprived of life, 
liberty, or property, without due process of law, and to secure to the 
accused in criminal prosecutions trial by jury, and compulsory pro- 
cess for his witnesses, apply to the United States only, and not to laws 
or proceedings under the authority of a State, and that the provision 
which prohibits any State to pass ' ex-post-facto laws applies only to 
legislation concerning crime; that if the ordinances and proceedings 
of the Council were in the nature of civil as distinguished from crim- 
inal proceedings, the only possible ground for the interposition of the 
courts of the United States in any form was that Parsons, if removed 
from office, would be deprived by the State, of life, liberty, or prop- 


erty, without due process of law, or has been denied the equal protec- 
tion of the laws. For this a remedy could be found in the courts of 
the State, by proper proceedings, and the equity courts were powerless 
to interfere. But that whether the proceedings of the Council were 
to be regarded as in their nature criminal or civil, judicial or merely 
administrative, they related to a subject which the Circuit Court of 
the United States, sitting in equity, has no jurisdiction or power over, 
and can neither try and determine for itself, nor restrain by injunc- 
tion, the tribunals and officers of the State and city from trying and 
determining; that the court being without jurisdiction to entertain the 
bill for an injunction, all its proceedings in the exercise of the juris- 
diction which it assumed are null and void; that it had no power to- 
make the restraining order; that the adjudication that the defendants 
were guilty of contempt in disregarding that order was equally void ; 
and that their detention by the Marshal under that adjudication was 
without authority of law, and they should be discharged. 

The termination of this proceeding in the manner above indicated, 
completely vindicating the action of the Council, was greeted by the 
citizens of Lincoln with great rejoicing, and the released councilmen 
were the heroes of the hour. 



The Tartarrax Pageant— The Originator of the Idea— The Parade 
— The Purpose to Make the Tartarrax Parade an Annual Oc- 

Mr. Robert McReynolds, manager of Funke's Opera House, is a 
man of large ideality, and possesses a high appreciation of the ro- 
mantic, poetic, and spectacular. He has seen the world, and has an 
eye to what will please the people. He is not afraid to do and dare, 
and take reasonable chances on winning success. He was one of the 
pioneer adventurers into the Black Hills, and went there as early as 
February, 1876. During the closing months of that year he explored 
Mexico, visited Cuba, and meditated on the poetic deeds of Christo- 
pher Columbus while standing by his tomb in the cathedral of Santa 
Domingo, in Havana. During 1878 and 1879 he traveled over the 
battle-scarred Southern States, and wrote what he saw for the press. 
When the great gold excitement was taking thousands to Leadville, 
he assisted in leading the van. He is the author of several novels 
that have been published in book form, and his newspaper " fairy tale," 
which resurrected Brigham Young, the late president and priest of 
the Salt Lake " Saints," and found him hidden away near Lincoln, 
was one of the most successful canards published in recent years. He 
settled down to business in 1880, in this city, and it so happened that 
during recent months that he read the tale of mythological heroism 
displayed by the Spanish general, Coronado, who traveled from Mex- 
ico to Nebraska to see whether King Tartarrax really did live in 
golden splendor in the Land of the Quivera, as related in another 
chapter of this book. 

When it was proposed during April and May to celebrate the 
Fourth of July this year, the city seemed to think it ought to be 
done. Lincoln had not attempted a worthy observance of the day 
for a number of years. Various plans were proposed, to the end 
that something unique and entertaining might be produced. Mr. 
McReynolds suggested to several of his friends of the city press that 



the story of King Tartarrax might be adopted, in some way, to pro- 
duce at least a fine spectacular parade and effect. He could see, in 
his mind, how great a pageant the Court of Tartarrax and the ar- 
mored cavaliers of Coronado would make. There would be the glit- 
ter, the pomp, the richly-colored uniforms, the panoplied knights, the 
arms and banners of the time ; and all this Avas Nebraska's own tra- 
dition, peculiar to herself. It was practically fitting, and, it seemed 
to him, a "drawing card." 

; 9'3s>„ 


He explained his scheme to R. L. Howe, among others, then with 
the State Journal, who, in writing about it afterward, found it nec- 
essary to reconcile the fact that, while many had fallen in with the 
Tartarrax plan of celebration, the labor organizations of the city had 
decided to have a symbolic display of the industries, and business of 
the city. He proposed that the Tartarrax representation and the 
trades display be united on the plan of exhibiting Nebraska in the 
semi-barbaric days of the weird Spanish invasion, under the rule of 


kings, and Nebraska in 1889, under the prosperity and laws of the 

This scheme of unification was adopted and substantially carried out. 
To encourage the people to make the pageant as great a success as 
possible, he also urged, in the paper, that the Tartarrax and Trades 
Display be used as the foundation for an annual carnival, similar to 
that of the Veiled Prophet, in St. Louis, and Mardi Gras, in New 
Orleans, that the nation might become more familiar with Nebraska 
and Lincoln, through the interesting combination of the poetic past 
and the patriotic and realistic present. This possibility was also kept 
in view in the preparation of the Tartarrax and Industrial Pageant, 
and it is not improbable that Tartarrax will come to be a great 
National attraction during the next five or six years, more interesting 
than the Veiled Prophet or Mardi Gras, because more appropriate to 
the institutions of our country, and more heroic and poetic. 

On the 17th of May Mr. McReynolds appeared before the city 
Board of Trade, which convened in the county court room, on the 
third floor of the building on the corner of Eleventh and M streets. 
He proposed to the board that it give official sanction and encourage- 
ment to a grand Fourth of July celebration movement, indicating 
briefly the nature of the proposed exposition. The board hesitated a 
little, as it was making a vigorous effort to raise $10,000 by subscrip- 
tion to advertise the city, and feared that a second call for money might 
imperil the success of the main subscription. But Messrs. Thomas 
Lowrey, M. Ackerman, and others, pressed the matter and said the 
board would be asked for no money. The use of its name was all 
that was solicited. The matter was finally disposed of by the ap- 
pointment of a committee of five to report to the board, at an early 
meeting, on the feasibility of attempting a celebration of the kind 
projected. This committee was composed of Messrs. M. Ackerman, 
J. J. Butler, C. J. Ernst, A. D. Kitchen, and Robert McReynolds. 

A week later, May 24th, this committee reported to the board at 
the same place, and unanimously agreed "that a grand celebration of 
the Fourth of July be heartily recommended by the Lincoln Board of 
Trade." This report was adopted by the board, and a committee of 
ten was named to represent the board in the preparation of the dis- 
play, said committee being strictly instructed to incur no financial 
liability in the name of the board. The committee selected was as 

342 history or THE CITY OF LINCOLN. 

follows : Robert McReynolds, Chairman; M. Ackerman, C. J. Ernst, 
Frank Perkins, Phelps Paine, C. C. Munson, H. Woltemade, J. J. 
Butler, T. F. Lasch, J. C. Seacrest. 

Later in the evening, a committee representing the Central Trades 
Union of the city, appeared before the board, and announced, through 
its chairman, Mr. George A. Fox, that the workingmen had decided 
upon a celebration in the city, and asked the board's cooperation. 
Mr. E. E. Brown moved that the board committee be instructed to 
cooperate with all other committees in arranging for a Fourth of 
July celebration. This was unanimously agreed to. On the evening 
of June 3d, these committees met on the stage of Funke's Opera 
House, organized by electing Robert McReynolds chairman of the 
joint committee, appointed subcommittees to take charge of "the various 
features of the celebration, such as finance, decorations, the press, ad- 
vertising, and so on. 

Then the work went on with energy. Such a pageant was an ex- 
periment in Lincoln, and it was hard work to devise plans new to all, 
get the people interested, and come up to the requirements of the 
advertisements that had to be put out at once. But here the peculiar 
ability of Robert McReynolds was best displayed. He planned, en- 
couraged, and pushed the scheme with constant energy. He sent out 
printed matter in the form of edicts and commissions from King Tar- 
tarrax, to his faithful subjects, and commissions from Coronado to his 
faithful cavaliers, commanding them to appear and aid in the pageant. 
These productions were in illuminated colors, with oriental and caba- 
listic embellishments, and were wonderfully unique. After much 
zealous labor, in which Robert McReynolds was the inspiring pres- 
ence, and M. Ackerman, T. F. Lasch, G. A. Fox, and J. H. Kramer, 
distinguished themselves for tireless, energetic assistance, the great 
anniversary day came, bright and salubrious. Early in the day every 
window, and many house tops, from O and Twenty-seventh streets to 
Eighth, and for several blocks in all directions from O and Tenth, on 
the line of the procession, were filled with eager faces. Every foot of 
sidewalk on the route was occupied, and the side streets were filled 
with vehicles loaded with persons, full of patriotic interest. 

It had been arranged that when the parade was ready to begin, a 
couple of messengers should ride swiftly and deliver to Lieutenant C. 
P. Walter, commander of the State University artillery, on the uni- 










versity campus, orders to fire the national salute, which was to be the 
signal to the great procession to start, and to the people that it was in 
motion. Harry Bartruff and William McClay, two bold young men, 
were each mounted on a "runaway" horse, and stood just at the head 
of the parade, at Twenty-fourth and O streets. The street was clear 
of street-cars, vehicles, and people, the entire length. The army of 
spectators were earnestly expectant. The king, Mr. Richard O'Neill,, 
in fine costume of gold, silk, velvet, brass armor, and crown, gave the 
signal that all was ready. Marshal W. W. Carder, and the city police, 
all mounted, dressed into position, ready for the boom of the cannon, 
and command, "Forward." The head of the column was at once on 
the alert. 

Then the two heralds were given the word to "go." . Their racers 
fairly sprang into the air, and were off like the wind. It had been the 
intention of the riders to make the start on the dead run, then move 
more slowly from Nineteenth to Fifteenth streets, and then make an- 
other swift dash the remainder of the distance. But one horse took 
the bit in his teeth and made a dead race of it all the way to the post- 
office ; in fact made a race of it without regard to his rider. The 
other horse, of course, kept up as best he could. This spectacle elec- 
trified the great concourse of people, and many declared it one of the 
most picturesque and inspiring sights of the day. The heralds started 
at 11:56J o'clock a.m., and the first boom of the cannon resounded 
over the city just as the clock in Temple hall began to strike for noon. 
Then the great procession began to slowly move westward on O street; 
and it was a pageant which probably never was approached in beauty, 
magnitude, and complexity of display, west of the Missouri river, 
certainly not in Nebraska or outside of San Francisco, if even there. 
The column filled the street, in many parts, to its full width, for a 
continuous distance of over thirty blocks, or two and one-half miles. 
The horsemen and footmen were in the varicolored costumes of me- 
dieval Spain, or of modern Turks, and other nations, and all were 
decked in more or less gold and silver ornaments. Many wore some 
sort of brilliant armor, crested helmets, and other striking imitations 
of antique costumes and heraldry. Bright spears and battle axes, 
gorgeous banners, plumes, and glittering shields, were numerous. The 
head of the procession represented the Tartarrax scheme. The main 
portion of the display was for the arts, trades, resources, and principles 
of the modern republic. 


After the police, mounted, in uniform, and wearing light colored 
helmet caps, came Gordon's drum corps, fantastically costumed, led 
by Marshals L. S. Gillick and A. T. Cameron. Then followed the 
king's herald, splendidly mounted, and dressed like a Turkish pasha. 
The king's buglers, sounding the king's coming, were in Spanish dress. 
Then followed King Tartarrax, Mr. Richard O'Neill, mounted on a 
white horse, costumed in red velvet, with rich trimmings. He wore a 
long gray beard and gray hair, a crown of gold studded with brilliant 
jewels. Following him were fifty mounted cavaliers in knightly cos- 
tumes. The king and his guard were Knights of Pythias. Next came 
the Univefsity Cadet Band, musicians to the queen of Tartarrax. The 
queen, Miss Nellie Graves, robed in purple and scarlet satin, followed, 
riding in a gorgeously decked chariot, surrounded by her court, all 
clad in rich and appropriate costumes. Following were two other 
large display chariots, filled with members of the queen's court. These 
were mainly Odd Fellows and Daughters 'of Rebekah. Mr. A. H. 
Weir was the queen's minister. • Curtice & Thiers's Military Band 
were musicians to General Coronado. Mr. T. Lowrey followed the 
queen, costumed like a Spanish officer of three hundred and fifty 
years ago. Mr. E. W. Hunt, chief of the staff, rode at the general's 
left, and his richly armed and warlike staff came next in brilliant 
array. Then came the Omaha Wheel Club, other wheelmen, and the 
Lincoln Wheelmen, the latter rigged out in show attire of red, white, 
and blue, and their wheels bright with flags and bunting. A phalanx 
of colored spearmen, in striking dress of knightly cut, marched ahead 
of the open barouches conveying Mayor Graham, Ex-Mayor Sawyer, 
Hon. G. M. Lambertson, and R. H. Oakley, president of the Board 
of Trade, and other citizens. 

Then came the industrial and merchants' parade, making a highly 
creditable display. After the line of march had been completed, the 
exercises at the capitol grounds came next in order, where Tartarrax 
welcomed his visitors, Coronado, and ambassadors from the courts of 
Mexico and other Southern States, and was presented with the keys 
of the city by his honor the Mayor. 

The Tartarrax parade proved to be a wonderful success, and if in 
future years the idea is reproduced and made more elaborate in its 
production, the pageant of 1889 will be looked back to as the start- 
ing point of one distinguishing feature about Lincoln which will make 
her name a household word throughout the country. 



Lancaster Pioneers — The Formation of the Old Settlers' Association 
— The Membership of the Association on August 1, 1889. 

The great men and women of this nation have generally been pio- 
neers, or the descendants of pioneers. Abraham Lincoln, General 
U. S. Grant, Andrew Jackson, James A. Garfield, and Benjamin 
Harrison, are examples of pioneer manhood. It takes a man or 
woman who has the constancy and courage of heroes to go to a wild 
and unsubdued region and battle with nature, Indians, poverty, years 
of hard labor, and deny themselves the luxuries of organized society, 
for the purpose of earning a home and competence for their declining 
years. The pioneers are among the heroes of progress and civiliza- 
tion, to whom society will ever be indebted. 

Their hardships develop a spirit of fraternity among them, and 
when the conflicts of the wilderness are over, they take delight in 
forming associations to commemorate the deeds done in conquering 
the wilderness and creating a new State. They recount the history 
of the past, smile at early hardships, recall situations of terror and 
distress with grim humor, and sing "Auld Lang Syne " with a zest 
and brotherly warmth that is the very spirit of eloquence. 

The time is now ripe for an Old Settlers' Association in Lincoln 
and Lancaster county, and such an association is now in existence, 
probably for a long life, to gratify the pioneers, and to record their 
history while engaged in the work of erecting this splendid common- 
wealth on the site of the coyote's den, and making way for the flying 
palace car in place of the Indian trail of 1860. 

An attempt was made to organize a permanent association in 1882, 
but the time did not seem ripe, and it was a failure. Twenty-five 
old settlers then met, on July 4th, and drafted a constitution and 
signed it, and elected officers. 

The signers at that convention were the following well-known gen- 
tlemen : 

Levi Snell. 
M. G. Bohanan. 
F. H. Bohanan. 
Stewart McConiga. 
T. P. Kennard. 
Louis Helmer. 
S. B. Galey. 
J. "W. Prey. 
E. T. Hudson. 
Sam McClay. 
J. L. Porter. 
Wm. Mills. 
A. G. Hastings. 


T. M. Ganter. 
J. M. Young. 
John McManigal. 
D. Banghart. 
C. H. Gere. 
J. O. Young. 
R. R. Tingley. 
H. G. Jessup. 
W. W. Carder. 
L. H. Robbins. 
O. N. Humphrey. 
Austin Humphrey. 

The officers elected were as follows : President, J. W. Prey ; Vice 
President, E. T. Hudson; Secretary, Austin Humphrey; Treasurer, 
N. C. Brock. The meeting of July 4th adjourned to meet July 15th, 
but only four persons were present at that time, and an adjournment 
was taken to September; but the organization never had another 

But the attempt to organize an association the present year has 
been very successful, owing very largely to the untiring and enthusi- 
astic efforts of Mr. M. G. Bohanan, who has kept it constantly be- 
fore the minds of the pioneers, and by personal solicitation has secured 
nearly four hundred names for membership in the association. The 
meeting for organization took place at the council chamber, at the 
northwest corner of Q, and Tenth streets, on April 23, 1889. Mr. 
A. J. Sawyer was called to the chair, and Mr. J. P. Hebard was 
•chosen Secretary. A committee was appointed to draft a constitution 
for the association, the same to be reported at a future meeting. This 
committee consisted of Messrs. A. W. Field, Levi Snell, S. C. Elli- 
ott, N. S. Harwood, M. Tower, and A. J. Sawyer. A committee for 
each township in the county was selected, whose duty it would be to 
augment the membership, and generally promote the interests of the 
association. It was agreed that eligibility to membership should be 
based on a residence in the county dating as early as 1875. 

The next meeting was held at Bohanan's hall, on the southwest cor- 
ner of Tenth and N streets, on May 11, 1889. Captain L. W. Bil- 
lingsley was called to the chair and Mr. J. P. Hebard was continued 
as secretary. Nearly one hundred of the pioneers were present, and a 
complete organization was effected. 


Mr. A. J. Sawyer, for the committee appointed to draft a constitu- 
tion for the association, reported a set of by-laws and rules for the 
government of the organization, which were adopted. The basis of 
membership was made a fifteen years' residence in the county, so that 
the continuance of the association may be perpetual. It was also ar- 
ranged that a general rally at Cushman park should take place on 
June 19, 1889. Various committees were named to prepare the pro- 
gramme for that occasion. 

Most of the old settlers present signed the constitution. The com- 
mittee appointed to nominate permanent officers for. the association 
recommended the following persons for the positions specified : 

Pbesident — Mr. L. W. Billingsley. 

Vice Presidents — Oak Precinct, J. S. Hermance; Denton Precinct, E. T. Hud- 
son; Little Salt Precinct, Mat. Maule; Yankee Hill Precinct, Ans. Williams; West 
Oak Precinct, L. B. McFarland; Centerville Precinct, D. E. Prey; Highland Pre- 
cinct, Nicholas Bahl; Elk Precinct, J. W. Smith; Buda Precinct, H. C. Eeller; 
Grant Precinct, J. S. TJmangst ; South Pass Precinct, Phil Burling ; Lancaster Pre- 
cinct, Phil Hacker ; Waverly Precinct, J. P. Loder ; Stevens Creek Precinct, J. H. 
Wilcox ; Olive Branch Precinct, Henry Holman; North Bluff Precinct, John Dee; 
Middle Creek Precinct, J. W. Castor; Panama Precinct, O. N. Hazleton ; Nemaha 
Precinct, Wm. Eoggencamp; Mill Precinct, John Dale; Stockton Precinct, Charles 
Ketzliff ; Saltillo Precinct, W. E. Keys ; Garfield Precinct, Ed. Garfield; Lincoln, 
First Ward, Patrick Hayden ; Second Ward, F. H. Bohanan ; Third Ward, Aroasa 
Cobb; Fourth Ward, C. M. Parker; Fifth Ward, H. T. Davis; Sixth Ward, W.W. 

Secbetaey — Mr. J. P. Hebard. 

Teeasueee — Mr. J. W. Prey. 

Executive Committee — Messrs. Levi Snell, M. G. Bohanan, and J. V. Wolf. 

The meeting adjourned to meet on June the 8th to complete the ar- 
rangements preliminary to the rally at the park on June 19th. 

The picnic was a great success, the day was beautiful, and the old 
settlers assembled by hundreds from all parts of the county. The 
number of pioneers present were estimated at 600, and with their 
children and friends, perhaps had an aggregate attendance of fifteen 
hundred people. 

The exercises began at 11 o'clock with prayer by Rev. H. T. Davis. 
Then the principal address of the day was delivered by Mr. C. H. 
Gere. This was made up of historical reminiscences of the principal 
events in the founding of the city, and settling the county, between 
the years 1867 to 1871 inclusive. After singing "Auld Lang Syne" 
Mr. J. V. "Wolf, the association poet, read a set of rhymed collections. 

OLD settlers' association. 349 

Judge S. B. Pound spoke on "Lincoln, Law, and Groceries," referring 
to the years of 1866 to 1868, when he was engaged in both occupa- 
tions without great inconvenience to himself. Colonel J. E. Philpott 
followed with some remarks on " The Missouri as a Highway to Ne- 
braska in 1867," detailing some river experiences of the very early 
days, and the importance of the river routes in reaching the interior 
■of the great west. 

After further vocal music, Mr. Stewart McConiga detailed how the 
settlers rushed in for claims at " The United States Land Office 
Twenty Years Ago," at which he was the Register. Mr. A. J. Sawyer 
recounted the years of trial during which the grasshoppers scourged 
this region, the period being from 1874 to 1876. Rev. H. T. Davis 
related some entertaining reminiscences of the early churches. 

Then followed a "basket dinner" and social among the pioneers. 
After dinner, the feature which first attracted attention was the exhi- 
bition of a Lancaster county pony twenty -six years old. The animal 
was then and there declared a member of the Old Settlers' Association 
and was decorated with a badge. The horse was the property of S. 
W. McKesson. It was ridden across the sight of Lincoln before the 
town was laid out, by John C. Fremont. McKesson, who was on 
hand, explained the circumstance fully. The pony was nimble enough 
to clamber up into the speakers' stand, a feat which not many horses 
<;an be induced to attempt. 

Colonel George B. Skinner told about having been auctioneer for 
the lot sales of 1869. He received $1,500 for five days' work, and 
when he took the money said to T. P. Kennard that he would not 
give that roll of bills for the whole town and the whole county of 
Lancaster. But he has radically changed his mind since. Mr. John 
S. Gregory then told of the early days on the Salt Basin and the vil- 
lage of Lancaster, in a racy and entertaining manner. Mr. Levi Snell 
recalled some reminiscences of the State lot sales. Elder E. T. Hud- 
son closed the programme with some stories of the very early settle- 
ments. Then the old settlers were photographed in a body, and the 
first Congress of the Old Settlers adjourned. The meeting was just 
such a wholesome, happy, affair as affords joy to the heart of a pioneer. 

Not all present on this occasion have joined the association, but the 
record of those who have is a valuable part of the history of this county 
and city, and is therefore appended in full. 



Here is the Old Settlers' Association, as its roster appeared in July r 
1889, the native State and year of coming to this county being also- 
given : 


A. S. Godfrey, Massachusetts, '70. 
Louie Meyer, Austria, '70. 
E. E. Brown, New York, '70. 

C. B. Beach, Ohio, '69. 

A. B. Beach, Ohio, '70. 

W. H. Dobson, Ontario, '72. 

B. Cox, Virginia, '72. 
Mrs. E. B. Cox, Ohio, '72. 
John Schuller, Austria, '74. 

S. B. Hohmann, Pennsylvania, '69. 

S. Peckham, England, '74. 

James B. Hale, Indiana, '66 

J. W. Smith, Indiana, '73. 

John Y. Ellenburg, Germany, '73 

E. J. Williams, Pennsylvania, '68. 

J. H. Painter, Pennsylvania, '73. 

Dr. A. K. Painter, Pennsylvania, '74. 

J. N. T. Jones, Kentucky, '69. 

Adelia Boyd, Sweden, '70. 

A. H. Wilson, New York, '66. 

W. Flanigan, Canada, '71. 

M. V. Eadford, Illinois, '70. 

N. G. Franklin, Ohio '71. 

H. E. George, Illinois, '70. 

E. During, Ohio, '79. 

Luther Batten, Wisconsin, '70. 

H. L. Andrews, Wisconsin, '71. 

O. M. Druse, New York, '71. 

P. Hayden, Ireland, '70. 

H. Wittman, Germany, '73. 

H. Malberts, Germany, '65. 

D. L. Peckham, Michigan, '67. 
J. L. Porter, Virginia, '66. 

L. N. Haskin, New York, '63. 
James Gilmore, Indiana, '72. 
Win. Frohn, Germany, '70. 
W.W.W. Jones, Illinois, '74. 
A. E. Hargreaves, England, '72. 
J. W. Castor, Ohio, '73. 
Charles Hichewick, '67. 
Eobert Pickel, Illinois, '67. 
J. K. Honeywell, New York, '68. 

H. Schultz, Germany, '66. 
George A. Mayer, Germany, '63. 

F. S. Wittstruck, Germany, '65. 
J. C. Clarke, Vermont, '71. 

Ed. Bingham, England, '67. 
J. P. Walton, Ohio, '74. 

C. C. Pace, Kentucky, '74. 

Mrs. M. P. Husted, Michigan, '67. 
W. J. Turner, Ohio, '69. 
W. E. G. Caldwell, New Hampshire '70l 
W. J. Cooper, New York, '69. 
John Currie, Pennsylvania, '72. 
Chris Fossler, Germany, '69. 
M. Bowden, Ireland, '68. 
' E. S. Browne, England, '79. 
W. C. Bnrke, Ohio, 68. 
Fred Schmidt, Iowa, '70. 
H. H. Blodgett, New York, '69. 
J. S. Lefferdink, Holland, '71. 
H. Heffner, Germany, '69. 

G. M. Blodgett, New York, '69. 
J. H. Myer, Hanover, '69. 
Fred Funke, Germany, '74. 

D. L. Graham, Ohio, '70. 
George Sexton, Ohio, '75. 
J. Farmer, New Jersey, '70. 
Thomas Morrissey, Ireland, '69. 
J. A. Morrissey, Tennessee, '66. 
J. D. Kleutsch, Prussia, '72. 

C. G. Bullock, New York, '73. 

E. G. Bohanan, Illinois, '75. 
W. E. Horn, Illinois, '70. 
Thomas C. Mawe, England, '72. 
H. S. Gordon, Massachusetts, '74. 
C. A. Tucker, Nebraska, '71. 

A. Chandler, Pennsylvania, '69. 

A. C. Eicketts, Ohio, '72. 

W. B. Hargreaves, England, '70. 

J. D. Johnson, Sweden, '70. 

A. Keens, England, '72. 

W. L. Gorton, New York '70. 

I. N. Leonard, Ohio, '70. 

OLD settlers' association. 


H. Oehlchlager, Germany, '74. 

P. Claus, Germany, '69. 

Thomas Price, Ireland, '69. 

George W. Prey, Wisconsin, '56. 

Wm. Charlton, Iowa, '73. 

H. F. Mitchell, Ohio, '73. 

H. F. "Warner, Iowa, '64. 

A. G. Warner, Iowa, '64. 

J. S. Howard, Ohio, '72. 

Adna Dobson, Wisconsin, '72. 

T. R. Prey, Massachusetts, '56. 

L. H. Meyer, Iowa, '68. 

W. H, Meyer, Iowa, '72. 

Henry Bartells, Germany, '73. 

Silas Sprague, Ohio, '68. 

M. Oppenheimer, Germany, '68. 

Joseph Oppenheimer, Missouri, '70. 

John Thompson, 71. 

Robert M. Manley, Ohio, '68. 

Robert Mitchell, England, '71. 

J. H. Kellum, Massachusetts, '71. 

Cornelius Moran, Lincoln, Neb., '61. 

M. G. Bohanan, Illinois, '68. 

E. T. Roberts, New York, '73. 

H. D. Hathaway, Ohio, '72. 

George Sherrer, Germany, '72. 

Maurice Dee, Nebraska, '60. 

N. D. Smith, Ohio, '71. 

E. R. Sizer, Illinois, '74. 

A. W. Field, Illinois, '63. 

N. C. Abbott, New York, '71. 

T. C. Kern, Indiana, '72. 

Wm. Roggenkamp, Friezen, '60. 

H. W. Hardy, New York, '71. 

J. A. Bailey, Ohio, '68. 

Timothy Kelley, Ireland, '69. 

Ed. A. Church, England, '68. 

J. B. Trickey, Illinois, '70. 

Mark Howe, Ohio, '70. 

R. H. Corner, England, '73. 

H. H. Grimes, Ohio, '74. 

W. E. Wittman, Indiana, '70. 

W. J. Marshall, Vermont, '70. 

C. H. Foxworthy, Indiana, '74. 

J. H. Foxworthy, Indiana, '73. 

M. Shay, Ireland, '59. 

Ellen Sbay, Ireland, '59. 

E. B. Hyde, Illinois, '69. 

Eddie I. Bohanan, Nebraska, '74. 
Isaac Whited, Ohio, '71. 
J. F. Schultz, Germany, '67. 

C. C. Morse, Vermont, '72. 

A. C. Munson, Nebraska, '71. 
MatMaule, , '71. 

D. C. Brown, Missouri, '72. 
R. W. Kent, Illinois, '73, 

W. H. Schmale, Germany, '67. 
C. A. Porter, Iowa, '66. 
H. Perkins, Indiana, '69. 
M. B. Donahue, Iowa, '68. 
M. Cobb, Wisconsin, '71. 
Harry Abbott, England, '71. 
J. A. Snyder, Indiana, '62. 
Wm. Bohanan, Illinois, '69. 
C. F. Retzliff, Germany,' 58. 

E. L. English, Illinois, '70. 

A. G. Kellum, Massachusetts, '71. 
Henry Alberts, Germany, '65. 
H. H. Schaberg, Wisconsin, '70. 
T. E. Longstreet, New York, '70. 
A. W. Stutheit, Iowa, '66. 
S. C. Blasier, New York, '68. 

John Lundgreen, '73. 

L. B. McFarland, Ohio, '74. 

G. A. Spencer, New York, '71. 

C. G. Beams, Ohio, '74. 

Sam McClay, Ohio, '67. 

James Burcham, Ohio, '68. 

John Fisher, Pennsylvania, '69. 

Phil Bohanan, Nebraska,' 71. 

E. Warnes, Eogland, '62. 

J. C. McNair, Maryland. 

George A. Nandichle, New Jersey, '69. 

J. J. Robinson, New York, '71. 

G. E. Cox, Nova Scotia, '71. 

T. D. Moulton, Illinois, '75. 

L. N. Fuller, Massachusetts, '70. 

E. S. Reed, New York, '72. 

W. M. Oyler, Missouri, '75. 

Jacob North, England, '72. 

Wm. McClain, Indiana, '65. 

A. M. Davis, Indiana, '67. 

H. J. Walsh, Ireland, '69. 

John Schmidt, Bavaria, '71. 

Eli Bates, Ohio, '74. 

J. R. Bing, Ohio, '72. 



C. M. Leighton, Maine, '68. 

Dennis Merriman, Ireland, '68. 

W. H. Boyer, Ohio, '68. 

Wm. Hopkins, Delaware, '71. 

Chris Rocke, Atlantic Ocean, '70. 

C. E. Hedges, Illinois, '73. 

J. F. Bishop, Indiana, '70. 

J. W. Hedges, New York, '73. 

J. W. Rees, Ohio, 70. 

A. H. Masterman, West Indies, '74. 

Adam Bax, Germany, '68. 

W. W. Wilson, Pennsylvania, '71. 

John Reed, Wisconsin, '71. 

W. E. Keys, Ohio, '63. 

Eleanor G. Keys, Canada, '63. 

J. J. Butler, Newfoundland, '69. 

W. F. Little, Pennsylvania, '72. 

J. S. Gregory, first permanent settler, 

Vermont, '62. 
C. O. Strickland, Illinois, '69. 
John Michael, Pennsylvania, '56. 
W. L. Wilcox, West Virginia, '70. 
I. M. Raymond, New York, '71. 
O. P. Davis, Ohio, '73. 
W. H. Goodrich, New York, '70. 
R. P. R. Millar, Missouri, '84. 
M. D. Henry, Ohio, '67. 
W. E. Field, Massachusetts, '74. 
C. H. Hohmann, '69. 
T. J. Dickson, Scotland, '71. 
A. L. Frost, Iowa, '68. 
C. C. Munson, Connecticut, '70. 
H. Gardner, England, '73. 
J. R. Clark, Ohio, '74. 
J. H. North, England, '73. 

F. A. Hovey, New York, '69. 

G. F. Hodges, Iowa, '67. 
S. K. Hale, Ohio, '75. 
Nels Westover, Canada, '70. 
C. H. Castor, Ohio, '73. 

J. H. Bullock, New York, '73. 
H. Vanderpool, New York, '72. 
W. E. Hardy, New York, '71. 
W. G. Bohanan, Illinois, '69. 
T. H. Hyde, Vermont, '68. 
W. G. Roberts, New York, '73. 
J. F. Cadman, Illinois, '59. 
G. R. Wolf, Prussia, '73. 

L. P. Fisher, New York, '70. 

C. J. Heffly, Pennsylvania, '67. 
M. L. Hiltner, Pennsylvania, '69. 
R. Schneider, Switzerland, '71. 
A. G. Barnes, Ohio, '74. 

E. A. Morgan, New York, '70. 

A. G. Hastings, Connecticut, '69. 

J. P. Loder, Ohio, '57. 

Robt. McCartney, Illinois, '69. 

J. M. Meyers, Ohio, '69. 

J. M. Tiger, New Jersey, '67. 

Oscar Lau, Pennsylvania, '67. 

Hiram Polly, New York, '74. 

W. J. Harris, Ohio, '65. 

A. S. Williams, Massachusetts, '68. 
Henry Townson, England, '74. 

W. D. Gulick, New Hampshire, '72. 

J. E. Philpott, Indiana, '67. 

J. H. White, England, '69. 

L. B. Treeman, New York, '73. 

B. F. McCall, New York, '66. 
J. Wheeler, Ohio, '68. 

P. O'Shea, Canada West, '71 . 
Gottlieb Meyer, Germany, '73. 

D. D. Helweg, Germany, '73. 
James Kane, Ireland, '71. 

J. H. Ames, Vermont, '69. 

E. C. Ames, Nebraska, '75. 
Kate Martin, Ireland, '67. ' 
W. J. Lamb, New York, '68. 

C. C. Burr, Illinois, '68. 

M. W. Sargent, New York, '74. 
W. C. Davis, Indiana, '70. 
W. T. Scott, England, '72. 
J. N. Larsh, Indiana, '70. 

D. E. Prey, New York, '56. 
Wm. Krueger, Iowa, '69. 
V. A. Markle, Canada, '68. 

R. R. Tingley, New Jersey, '68. 
Laurena Tingley, New York, '68. 
Jackson Johnson, Tennessee, '69. 

F. R. Denton, Ohio, '67. 
W. M. Seeley, Illinois, '73. 
S. G. Owen, Ohio, '70. 
.Thos. Carr, Ireland, '74. 

W. C. Spencer, Vermont, '69. 

Frank Chaffee, Ohio, '73. 

A. N. Burd, Pennsylvania, '65. 

OLD settlers' association. 


■Cyrus Carter, Ohio, '65. 
<xeorge Wornholz, Germany, '68. 
S. W. G-ettier, Pennsylvania, '69. 
S. J. Douglass, New York, '75. 
John Thompson, England, '71. 

F. C. Zehrung, Iowa, '74. 
Palmer Way, Pennsylvania, '68. 
■6. M. Lambertson, Indiana, '74. 

J. D. Maefarland, Pennsylvania,, '71. 
M. P. McWilliams, Ohio '69. 

E. Wallingford, Ohio, '58. 
Jerome Shamp, Ohio, '66. 

J. D. Monell, New York, '68. 

D. E. Bomgardner, Pennsylvania, '70. 

W. C. Eohde, Germany, '74. 

X. Barr, Europe, '74. 

O. N. Humphrey, Ohio, '69. 

John Sheedy, Ireland, '70. 

T. J. Noonan, Missouri, '70. 

J. J. Lichty, Pennsylvania, '73. 

5. P. Eitchy, Kentucky, '71. 

G. H. Simmons, England, '74. 
C. D. Jewett, New York, '71. 
H. W. Keel, Germany, '66. 
P. H. Sudduth, Ohio, '66. 
Amasa Cobb, Illinois, '69. 

•G. S. Foxworthy, Indiana, '74. 

6. B. Pound, New York, '61. 

P. E. Beardsley, New.York, '71. 

Nellie M. Beardsley, Iowa, '71. 

J. P. Beardsley, Nebraska, '74. 

W. A. Doggett, Massachusetts, '75. 

O:. W. Lee, Illinois, '74. 

L. Stewart, Pennsylvania, '68. 

G. B. Skinner, Connecticut, '70. 

L. C. Pace, Virginia, '75. 

H. C. Meadows, West Virginia, '70. 

W..W. Webster, Ohio, '69. 

L. H. Eobbins, Illinois, '69. 

T. W. Lowrey, Illinois, '71. 

F. W. Krone,' Germany, '69. 
H. A. Poston, Virginia, '75. 
J. A. Wallingford, Ohio, '54. 
David May, France, '69. 

C. F. Damrow, Indiana, '68. 
Geo. Leavitt, England, '70. 

L. J. Bumstead, Connecticut, '71. 

D. N. Syford, Pennsylvania, '74. 

M. L. Trester, Indiana, '69. 
J. O. Carter, Ohio, '72. 
J. H. Harley, Nova Scotia, '71. 
J. H. Barrett, Vermont, '70. 
Jacob Eocke, Germany, '69. 
W. S. Latta, Pennsylvania, '73. 
J. C. McBride, Ohio, '74. 

D. B. Howard, Indiana, '74. 
W. M. Leonard, Illinois, '74. 
M. B. Cheney, New York, '69. 
O. C. Bell, Indiana, '72. 

J. J. Deck, Wisconsin, '68. 

W. C. Griffith, Pennsylvania, '69. 

T. M. Marquett, Ohio, '74. 

F. M. Hall, Illinois, '76. 

A. J. Guthridge, Ohio, '68. 

Lewis Gregory, Connecticut, '75. 

W. A. Cadman, Illinois, '59. 

E. Hallett, Massachusetts, '71. 
H. J. Byam, New York, '70. 
J. E. Webster, New York, '69. 

D. G. Courtney, New York, '74. 
S. M. Melick, New Jersey, '70. 
J. H. McMurtry, Indiana, '71. 
C. E. Loomis, New York, '71. 
W. E. Stewart, Indiana, '60. 

T. H. McGahey, Pennsylvania, '72. 
J. J. Imhoff, Pennsylvania, '72. 
Eugene Woerner, Germany, '71. 
H. A. Ensign, Iowa, '70. 

A. D. Baker, Ohio, '74. 

M. E. Chevront, Vigirnia, '72. 

E. P. Childe, New York, '75. 
J. P. Lyons, New York, '74. 
Wm. Brokelmeyer, Germany, '74. 
J. T. Beach, Ohio, '68. 

B. Einger, Ohio, '68. 
A. Bolar, Ohio, '68. 

Carl Funke, Germany, '68. 

C. Wisner, Holland, '68. 
Charles Philpott, Nebraska, '75. 
H. D. Pierson, Indiana, '68. 
Ed. Franklin, Ohio, '72. 

John Franklin, Ohio, '72. 

Flora Frost Snell, Iowa, '68. 

Mrs. C. Paine, England, '73. 

S. C. F. McKesson, Illinois, '67. 

S. W. McKesson, Pennsylvania, '67. 



E. Eisler, Germany, '73. 

Almon Tower, Minnesota, '68. 

— Waltemade, Germany, 71. 

John Gieser, Germany, '69. 

Mrs. E. C. Martin, England, '71. 

S. W. Knight, Ohio, '74. 

H. C. Foster, Pennsylvania, '69. 

John Burke, Ireland, '70. 

D. W. Huff, Michigan, '70. 

Wm. Hogan, Illinois, '70. 

Theo. Benninghoff, Pennsylvania, '69. 

T. J. Crawford, Ohio, '66. 

W. T. Shuckman, Pennsylvania, '70. 

Win. Wilson, Massachusetts, '71. 

B. H. Hollister, New York, '73. 
A. Ward, Maryland, '69. 
James Brown, Kentucky, '72. 
George Bosselman, Germany, '72. 
Mary G. Cochran, Ohio, '67. 

R. P. Beecher, New York, '69. 
Wm. Wilson, England, '78. 
G. H. Exley, England, '71. 
J. Burkendorf, Missouri, '72. 
Zaek Hammel, Ohio, '71. 
L. Leavitt, Ohio, '71. 
Howard W. Caldwell, Ohio. '74. 
Allen Barber, Rhode Island, '73. 

D. A. Gilbert, New York, '72. 

Mrs. H. A. Tuttle, Massachusetts, '71. 
Mrs. A. C. Clark, Illinois, '71. 
George C. Spencer, England, '71. 

E. E. Gillespie, Nebraska, '69. 
Charles F. Joers, Germany, '74. 
Manuil Davey, Illinois, '64. 

A. Hitchcock, Canada,' 70. 
Mrs. Duke Beal, New York, '75. 
Anthony Gregg, New York, '71. 

C. W. Pierce, New York, '71. 
C. S. Cadwallader, Ohio, '66. 
W. J. Weller, Ohio, '69. 

W. L. Hermance, Nebraska, '74. 
C. C. Waldo, New York, '75. 
Isaac Oppenheimer, Germany, '70. 
Rev. D. Kinney, Ohio, '71. 
Henry Veith, Germany, '69. 
Mrs. H. Veith, Germany, '72. 
Katie Veith, Lincoln, '74. 
Henry Veith jr, Lincoln, '72. 

Mrs. J. C. Johnston, New York, '75. 

John F. Wittstruck, Illinois, '70. 

H. H. Leavitt, Missouri, '74. 

Oren Snyder, Wisconsin, '62. 

Major Moore, North Carolina, '74. 

John G. Stine, New Jersey, '68. 

George Seifert, Germany, '72. 

Pat McGerr, Ireland, '69. 

R. J. Campbell, Ohio, '72. 

Sam Arbuckle, Illinois, '75. 

Celestine Theibeaut, France, '71. 

G. H. Butler, England, '71. 

R. H. Oakey, New York, '70. 

Andrew Bay less, Tennessee, '72. 

W. P. Phillips, Ohio, '71. 

N. S. Harwood, Michigan, '71. 

P. J. Grant, Ireland, '69. 

Charles W. Woodward, Iowa, '74. 

J. F. Egger, Switzerland, '71. 

Wm. B. Harlow, New York, '72. 

Mrs. Jennie May, New York, '67. 

H. T. Davis, Ohio, '67. 

G. H. Augdin, West Virginia, '75. 

J. P. Munson, Kentucky, '66. 

John Naderhoff, Illinois, '70. 

James Giles, England, '69. 

E. S. Hudson, England, '69. 

Solomon Kirk, Tennessee, '57. 

W. E. Bates, Michigan, '74. 

John Lemke, Wisconsin, '59. 

S. Westerfield, Missouri, '72. 

G. W. Pleasant, North Carolina, '74. 

John Gesler, Iowa, '68. 

Joel N. Converse, Ohio, '70. 

S. J. Dobson, , '71. 

M. W. Griswold, New York, '69. 

Herman M. Reeves, New York, '70. 

Dr. W. Queen '60. 

W. J. Knowlton, '69. 

Henry Waterman, '70. 

Wm. Robertson, '71. 

Myron Tower, '68. 

W. W. Carder, '67. 

Thomas Hornby, '74. 

W. Smith, '70. 

A. L. Pound, '66. 

G. C. Hickox, '72. 

J. J. Hunt, 69. 



P. H. Cooper '65. 
John Hermance, '72. 
L. W. Billingsley, '69. 
N. Carpenter, '69. 
P. H. Bohanan, '68. 
D. A. Cline, '70. 
T. E. Burling, '68. 
John W. Crist, '71. 
Isaac Johnson, '71. 
W. W. English, '71. 
M. D. Tiffany, '70. 
Wm. M. McLaughlin, 
John Morrison, '69. 
J. L. McConnell, '58. 
C. Eellar, '69. 
John Dee, '56. 
Thomas Maloy, '67. 


Michael Noonan, '69. 

H. H. Wilson, '73. 

J. P. Hebard, Connecticut, '69. 

E. W. Eykert, '67. 

Levi Snell, '69. 

John W. Prey, '56. 

E. G. Clements, '69. 

Alexander Buchanan. 

C. H. Gere. 
George Gardner. 
L. J. Byer. 

W. W. Holmes. 
Louis Helmer. 

D. J. Hunt. 

J. A. Leonard. 
J. F. Erecson. 
Ira J. Hunt. 

As an interesting addendum to the foregoing roster of the old set- 
tlers, Mr. T. H. Hyde, editor and founder of the Lincoln Daily News, 
on June 20, 1889, printed a list of the business and professional men 
of the city who were engaged here prior to 1875, and still so continue. 
This list is as follows : 

Eev. H. T. Davis, first Methodist min- 
L. K. Holmes, manufacturer of brick. 
J. B. & E. L. Trickey, watchmakers and 

Leopold Barr, same. 
Bohanan Brothers, meat market, livery, 

and sale stables, hacks, omnibusses, 

Wm. Hyatt and Frank Eawlins, same. 
W. H. Brown, W. J. Turner, J. H.Har- 

ley, druggists. 
W. N. Eehlaender, pharmacist. 
J. & D. Newman, dry goods. 
Fred Schmidt, dry goods and general 

L. H. Eobbins, M. D. 
James Led with, grocer. 
Wm. D. Gulick, baker and grocer. 
Henry Veith, baker and grocer. 
Wm.'Harlow, baker and dealer in fancy 

Charles Spicer, baker. 

J. A. Bailey, house painter and decora- 

Humphrey Brothers, farm implements 
and hardware. 

Eaymond Brothers, wholesale grocers. 

A. S. Godfrey, C. C. Munson, lumber. 

J. W. Hedges, founder. 

State Journal, C. H. Gere, editor; H. D. 
. Hathaway, business manager ; A. H. 
Mendenhall, superintendent mechan- 
ical department. 

H. W. Hardy, furniture. 

A. E. Hargreaves, retail grocer in 1875 
to wholesale in 1878. 

E. G. Clements, photography. 
S. H. King, dental surgeon. 

F. H. Hohmann & Sons, music, musical 
instruments and teaching. 

A. M. Davis, carpets, rags, mattings, cur- 
tains, etc. 

P. H. Cooper, ice. 

A. C, Zeiraer, passenger and ticket agent 
B. &M. 



D. L. Peckham, L. J. Byer, Sam Mc- 
Cord, carpenters and contractors. 

J. J. Butler, architect and builder. 

J. P. Lantz, J. F. Lansing, real estate 
and insurance. 

J. H. McMurtry, same. 

J. H. Woodworth, saddlery manufac- 

S. C. Elliott, crockery, glassware, etc. 

J. E. Philpott, S. B. Pound, C. C. Burr, 
S. J. Tuttle, Harwood & Ames, J. H. 
Foxworthy, T. M. Marquett, L. W. 
Billingsley T. F. Barnes, W. J. Lamb, 

E. L. Smith, machinist. 

David May, A. Hurlbut, clothiers. 

John Morrison, John McWhinnie, and 
C. F. Damrow, merchant tailors. 

T. W. Lowrey, grain elevator, flouring 

B. C. Manley, fruit, cigars, etc. 

Louie Meyer, dry goods. 

E. T. Eoberts, undertaker. 

Geo. Seifert and George E. Fischer, har- 
ness and saddlery. 

J. A. Buckstaff, lumber. 

Joseph Whittman, harness. 

This list will be exceedingly small in ten years from this time, but 
the work of the old settlers will live on in the generations to come, 
when not a man now on the roster shall live to answer at roll call. 



Lincoln as a Business Center — The Growth op Hee Business Interests 
prom Small Beginnings — Mention op Some op the Men Who Have 
Built Up the City. 

From the wild prairie hamlet of 1867, possessing less than fifty 
people, Lincoln has grown to a city of over 50,000 people in just 
Itwenty-two years. From an insignificant settlement in a wilderness, 
without trade or developed resources, there has been built up here a 
property worth not less than $50,000,000, the State Capitol building, 
the'State Penitentiary, the Asylum for the Insane, the State Univer- 
sity, the Wesleyan University, the Christian University, which will 
open this fall, and city school property valued at $500,000. Out of 
the prairie sod has grown the educational center of the Northwest, 
the political center of the State, and the most remarkable radial rail- 
way center west of the Missouri river, comprising four great systems, 
twelve diverging lines, reaching 1,000 towns, whose trade represents 
154,000 square miles of territory. 

; Here now are operated seventy factories, eighty wholesale houses,, 
eleven banks. The city possesses thirty-eight churches, twenty-six 
schools, thirteen temperance societies, five public libraries, twenty-six 
newspapers and periodicals, and nearly two hundred moral, social, fra- 
ternal, charitable, and similar organizations. The State Fair has been 
located at Lincoln for five years. The city possesses strong compa- 
nies for supplying illumination by gas, the arc, and also incandescent 
electric light. It has eight miles of paved streets, twenty miles of 
sanitary sewers, ten miles of storm-water sewers, and an ample system 
of water-works. It possesses five street car companies, one of which 
has a capital of $1,000,000, and they are now operating thirty-one 
miles of track. Among its great enterprises are the stock-yards and 
two large packing-houses, three immense paving-brick works, seven 
building-brick works, a large woolen mill, a paper mill, a cracker fac- 
tory, two planing mills and wood-working factories, a large tannery, 
three foundries, and extensive stone-cutting works. Lincoln is a divi- 



sion station on every railroad system entering here, and it seems prob- 
ablethat the great Rock Island railroad system will be added to her 
railway advantages in the near future. 

The city is supplied with the Western Union and Pacific Mutual 
Telegraph companies, who employ forty operators, and have through 
wires to all cities. Its telephone service includes over 600 local instru- 
ments and direct connection with sixty towns in Nebraska and sixty- 
six in Iowa. Its express service comprises the combined facilities of 


four great companies, with arrangements to bill direct over 70,000 
miles of road without transfer, with a constantly and rapidly increas- 
ing business. It also possesses an organized message service under 
the name of Lincoln District Telegraph Company. This was organ- 
ized on May 21, 1887, and possesses a very strong support in its 
board of stockholders, who are : G. W. Holdrege, J. D. Macfarland, 
C. E. Yates, J. McConniff, C. Thompson, E. E. Brown, John R. 
Clark, R. H. Oakley, George W. Bonnell, J. J. Dickey, L. H. Korty, 


and Charles G. Burton. Mr. Burton is Secretary and Manager. This 
■company's office is at the southwest corner of O and Tenth streets. It 
furnishes messengers and hacks at all hours, day and night; delivers 
trunks, and distributes advertising matter and invitations, and pro- 
vides night watchmen. 

The internal improvements made in the city in 1888 reached the 
grand aggregate of $3,287,418, including the erection of 1,000 resi- 
dences at a cost of over a million dollars. The jobbing business ad- 
vanced over twenty-five per cent during the past year. Over 600 
traveling men now reside here. The growth of the city for 1889 is 
more solid and extensive than ever before, many costly brick blocks, 
residences, and other improvements, being in process of construction, 
including a county court-house to cost $200,000, a new city well and 
pumping station, and two new houses for fire companies, with addi- 
tional costly fire apparatus. 

But while the city has grown so rapidly, it has been the resul^ 
mainly, of the efforts of those men who from the early days evinced 
their faith in the city and in its future development by their acts, and 
who, through months and years of depression, disappointment, and 
■discouragement, never lost their nerve, but kept the future always in 
view, and spoke words of encouragement to those who were hesitating 
•whether to make Lincoln their home. These men — most of them, 
at least — have been amply rewarded for their faith, and mention of 
a few of them will not be out of place in a work dealing with the 
founding and growth of the city. 

Hon. Isaac M. Baymond, senior member of the firm of Raymond 
Brothers & Co., wholesale grocers, is one of the most able and suc- 
cessful business men of Lincoln, and one whose work is closely 
identified with the city's progress for eighteen years. 

His father was the Rev. H. A. Raymond, pastor of the Dutch Re- 
formed Church at Niskayuna, N. Y., and was a graduate of both 
Yale College and Rutger's Theological Seminary, New Jersey. He 
continued as pastor of the church at Niskayuna for sixteen years, 
where he was very highly esteemed, both personally and as an able 
minister, declining, in the meantime, frequent calls to city churches 
at a higher salary. Here seven of his nine children were born. 

The mother of I. M. Raymond was born in Passaic county, New 



Jersey. She was a woman of positive views and earnest character, 
and sought to impress the value of correct principles upon her 

I. M. Raymond was born at Niskayuna, Schenectady county, New 
York, on the 3d of May, 1842. He received a common-school edu- 
cation, and then spent one term in the Jonesville Academy, Saratoga 
county, New York, and a term at the Chittenango Polytechnic Insti- 
tute, and at this date closed his seventeenth year. He then taught 


two terms of country school in Scoharie county, devoting about a 
year to this employment. He then removed to Waterloo, Iowa,, 
where he worked on a farm for six months, and then obtained a 
clerkship in the grocery store of his elder brothers, at Waterloo. He 
worked hard from 1861 to 1865 in this position, and then went tc- 
Waverly, Iowa, and took the management of a grocery store there 
owned by his brothers. While in Waverly he held his first political 
office, being a member of the city council. He managed the store at 
Waverly until November, 1871, and then removed to Lincoln Ne- 


braska, and established the wholesale grocery house of Raymond 
Bros. & Co., of which he has ever since been the able manager, and 
which has been remarkably successful. 

In 1886 he was elected a member of the House of the Twentieth 
Session of the Nebraska Legislature, and was the author of the Pri- 
mary Election Law, now in operation, a very important and satis- 
factory measure, as it is in accordance with the very fundamental 
principles of republican government, allowing all the people to nom- 
inate candidates, instead of a few schemers. 

In 1887 it became a very practical question whether the jobbing 
trade of Lincoln, or any interior point in Nebraska, could long sur- 
vive the fatal effects of the discriminations in freights, founded upon 
the Missouri river, where rates were adjusted at the expense of Ne- 
braska, without regard to the length of haul. This condition of 
freight charges threatened to put a stop to the commercial growth of 
Lincoln, and to require Nebraska generally to pay a ruinous tribute 
to the Missouri river railway combination that would continue to 
sap the prosperity of the State, as it had done for many years. 

Mr. Raymond began to agitate the necessity of the people of Lin- 
coln rising and making a most determined resistance to these oppres- 
sive discriminations, and finally wrote a strong letter, explaining to 
the people in clear and forcible terms how dangerous it would be to 
longer continue to suffer the unfair freight tariffs to retard and even 
threaten the life of the city's commerce. This letter was published 
in the daily papers of Lincoln, and led up to the reorganization of 
what had become a totally dormant Board of Trade, and later to the 
organization of a Freight Bureau in connection with the Board of 
Trade, designed to study the problem of railway freight charges, and 
devise such plans as would afford substantial relief. 

In this great contest Mr. Raymond was the main inspiration and di- 
recting force, and so skillfully, wisely, and courageously, was the cause 
pressed that the roads finally decided that it would be wise policy for 
them to yield, and place Lincoln on the same freight-tariff footing as 
the Missouri river towns. This was the first positive fracture made in 
the great Missouri river pool, one of the most powerful combinations 
of capital that ever existed on this continent. The value to the pub- 
lic of the equitable economic principles of the Concessions secured by 
the Lincoln Board of Trade, -not only for Nebraska but the entire 


West, cannot well be over-estimated. And the splendid results fol- 
lowing that contest may be attributed to I. M. Raymond more than 
to any other man ; in fact, without his aid it is doubtful if success would 
have crowned the contest. 

As a result of the great service he had rendered the public, he was 
nominated for the State Senate in 1888 almost without opposition, 
and elected by a large majority. He proved a very useful member of 
the Legislature, his eminent business ability being recognized in his 
appointment to the chairmanship of the Committee on Finance, Ways, 
and Means, in the Senate, the most important committee in the gift of 
that body. He introduced and secured the passage of Raymond's Bank- 
ing Bill, a measure which thoroughly and judiciously placed neces- 
sary restrictions upon bankers of the State, in the interest of a higher 
public credit, and for a better defense of depositors. This was one of 
the most important and valuable measures enacted by the twenty-first 
session of the Legislature. 

Mr. Raymond is a business man of a high order of ability. He has 
managed the large wholesale grocery business of Raymond Bros. & 
Co. with eminent success, and that house is one of the most prosper- 
ous in the State. In 1882 Mr. Raymond assisted to organize the 
Exchange National Bank of Hastings, of which he was made presi- 
dent and still continues to hold that position. During the spring of 
1889 he became one of the incorporators of the American Exchange 
National Bank, of Lincoln, of which he was also made President, and 
to the affairs of which he gives a considerable share of his personal 
attention. He is also one of the directors of the Lincoln Stock 
Yards, and a member of the Lincoln Packing and Provision Com- 
pany. In fact, he is an enterprising and valuable citizen of the city 
and State, always ready to contribute to the success of really impor- 
tant and deserving public enterprises. 

Among the business men of Lincoln there are none more thoroughly 
representative of the growth and possibilities of the great West than A. 
E. Hargreaves, the head of the extensive wholesale house of Har- 
greaves Bros. He is a thoroughly representative Lincoln man as 
well, having begun his business career in Lincoln when the city was 
in its infancy, and kept pace with its advancement, growing from a 
poorly-paid' clerk to the head of a firm doing a million dollars' worth 


of business annually, while Lincoln has developed from a hamlet to 
a magnificent city of more than fifty thousand people. 

Mr. Hargreaves was born in the world's metropolis, London, in 
1853. His father, Abraham Hargreaves, was a contractor, and his 
mother's maiden name was Elizabeth Ilingworth. 

As he entered commercial life when only eleven years old, his edu- 
cation, was confined to the instruction received at an early age in the 
common schools. But his business education was thorough, and when 
he left England, in 1872, to seek his fortune in the new world, he 
knew more about the details of business than many men of twice his 
age. At this time Nebraska was being extensively advertised in En- 
gland by the Land Commissioners of the B. & M. railroad, and with 
others Mr. Hargreaves sailed from England direct for Lincoln. 

The journey was an uneventful one, and on August 12, 1872, Mr. 
Hargreaves found himself at Pacific Junction. That his business ca- 
reer in Nebraska was begun at the bottom of the ladder is evidenced 
by his statement that at Pacific Junction he found himself in that con- 
dition which is designated in the Western vernacular by the expressive 
word, "strapped," and he was compelled to negotiate a loan of five 
dollars before he was able to continue his journey to Lincoln. Upon 
his arrival at Lincoln he was greatly discouraged. The town was a 
mere hamlet ; there was little business of any kind, and remunerative 
employment was an unknown boon. If he had had the means at this 
time he would have returned to England. Not having the means, 
however, with which to get away, he made the most of the circum- 
stances, and secured a job at the fair grounds as a sort of general 

After working in various capacities on a salary for several years,. 
Mr. Hargreaves decided to go into business for himself, and in 1875 
opened up a peanut stand on the south side of O street, between Elev- 
enth and Twelfth streets. He was still anxious to go back to En- 
gland at that time, but a kind fortune, disguised in the habiliments of 
poverty, prevented. Careful and industrious, he found his business 
increasing from year to year. In 1876 he moved into the next block 
west, when he added books and stationery to his business. 

The fruit and confectionery business was evidently the one for which 
he had a peculiar adaptation, and the one which furnished the widest 
field. This grew so rapidly that in 1879 he decided to go into the 



wholesale trade, and selling out his book and stationery business to 
Clason & Fletcher, erected a two-story building at 1028 P street, and 
established a wholesale fruit and confectionery house. As the devel- 
opment of the country tributary to Lincoln brought the demand, fancy 
groceries were added to the trade, and the firm rapidly became one of 
the best known in the State. 

The business increased so rapidly that the firm found it imperative 
upon them to find more commodious quarters and better facilities for 
doing business. Accordingly in 1886 they bought the large three- 

. ,*^>% ; 


story-and-basement building at the corner of Eighth and O streets. 
The abundant room and ample track facilities here gave opportunity 
for extending the business indefinitely. A straight line of staple 
and fancy groceries was put in, and a jobbing business in these 
goods was built up scarcely second to any in the city. The fruit de- 
partment was continued under the management of Mr. W. B. Har- 
greaves, Mr. Hargreaves's younger brother, who was given an interest 
in the business in 1882. The house is still one of the largest fruit- 
jobbing houses in the State. In 1888 a department for the exclusive 


handling of tea and cigars was established, and the tea department is 
undoubtedly the largest west of Chicago. The business of the firm 
in 1889 will amount to $1,000,000. 

In 1878, Mr. Hargreaves was married to Miss Jennie Blair, of 
this city, and now has a family of three children. Always at the 
front in matters of public enterprise, liberal in the treatment of his 
employes, prompt, and courteous in all his business relations, it is 
safe to say that Mr. Hargreaves's present popularity and prosperity 
are but the beginning of what his business career will develop in the 

Joseph J. Imhoff is one of the most prominent and successful busi- 
ness men of Lincoln, a representative of our best citizenship. He 
was born in Somerset county, Pennsylvania, on May 8, 1835. His 
father was Mr. Joseph Imhoff, and his mother Mrs. Catherine Heffley- 
Imhoff, who were born and spent their lives in that section of the 
Keystone State. They were descended from German parentage, and 
inherited the sturdy, industrious, and upright characteristics of then- 
race. Joseph Imhoff was engaged in managing a hotel in Somerset, 
Somerset county, Pennsylvania, for thirty-eight years, and also in 
farming, in both of which pursuits he was successful. His son, 
Joseph J. Imhoff, was the sixth of eight children, and spent his 
childhood and youthful years among the hills of his native country, 
acquiring a common-school education, until the age of fourteen, when 
he began his mercantile experience as a clerk in a store of general 
merchandise. After devoting three years to this work, he turned his 
attention to mechanical pursuits, learned the carpenter's trade, and 
followed it for five years. 

Then he decided to go westward, and removed to Urbana, Illinois, 
where he continued to follow for two years more the vocation of car- 
penter and builder. He then decided to seek a new and growing 
country, and located in Omaha, in 1856. Soon afterward he settled 
in Dakota county, and engaged in the business of carpenter and 
builder for a couple of years, building thirty-seven houses during that 
time. He then took up his residence in Nebraska City, where he 
engaged again in the mercantile business. While here the movement 
for the location of the State Capital at Lincoln was developed, and 
Mr. Imhoff became one of the original syndicate of fifteen who came 


from Nebraska City, and stayed the uncertain fortunes of the venture 
by assisting to bid off the lots at the appraised value, when the first 
sale was made on the 17th to the 22d of September, 1867. Had it 
not been for the courage of these men, it is very doubtful whether 
the capital would have been located at Lincoln. Ex-Governor Reed, 
now of Utah, was one of the syndicate at the sale, and remarked that 
"the people must be d — d fools to invest their money in the wild 
prairie, lots ; for himself he would not give $500 for the whole town 
site." Mr. Reed relented, however, and invested $750 in three lots 
before leaving town. 

In 1872, Mr. Imhoff removed to Lincoln, and for a year was occu- 
pied with handling general merchandise, and in a general trading and 
real estate business, which was lively at that time. In September, 
1873, he bought the "Douglas House," and changed the name to 
"The Commercial Hotel," which he conducted with great success for 
thirteen years. He made it the leading hotel in Lincoln, the political 
head-quarters of Nebraska, and the best-known hostelry in the State. 
He enlarged it from a small affair, until it acquired its present pro- 
portions of 108x150 feet, and three stories high. He then sold it for 

Mr. Imhoff has been a promoter, organizer, and manager, of many 
of the most important enterprises of the city, and has been one of its 
most liberal benefactors. He is always cheerful in contributing 
largely to any really meritorious project for the public welfare. He 
has ever been willing to assist in founding and building up enter- 
prises of importance to Lincoln. He was one of the organizers of 
the Union Savings Bank, and is yet a principal stockholder and di- 
rector. He was mainly instrumental in the establishment of the 
Union Stock Yards, was at one time Vice President of the company, 
and is still a stockholder. He was a moving spirit in the organiza- 
tion of the Lincoln Driving Park Association, and was its first Pres- 
ident. He finally bought the park, expended $7,500 in improving it, 
and then sold it for $75,000. He was one of the incorporators of the 
Lincoln Street Railway Company, the first line in the city, and con- 
tinued President of the company until its sale to the city corporation. 
When the Rapid Transit Street Railway Company was organized, Mr. 
Imhoff also became a leading contributor to its capital, and was made 
President of the company. He assisted to help form the Lincoln 






Electric Light Company, whose capital is $100,000) and has con- 
tinued its executive officer from the first. These facts will give some 
idea of the energy and activity of Mr. Imhoff's business life. 

Among the benevolent, objects for the city's good, in which he has 
been a principal helper, may be mentioned the erection of the city 
churches, especially St. Paul Church, of which he is a prominent 
member, as is Mrs. Imhoff, the Wesleyan University, and the new 
Young Men's Christian Association building. His good acts are 
legion, of which these are among the largest, and best known. It 
may be doubted whether any man has done more for the commercial, 
financial, charitable, and social good of Lincoln than Mr. Joseph J. 

On November 5, 1'862, Mr. J. J. Imhoff was married to Miss Mary 
E. Eector, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Sanford S. Rector, of Nebraska 
City. Mrs. Imhoff was born in Pickaway county, Ohio, and her 
parents still reside in Nebraska City She is one of the most active 
and useful workers in the Christian enterprises of the city, and their 
beautiful home at the southeast corner of J and Twelfth streets is 
one of the most elegant, and at the same time most hospitable, in 
the city. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Imhoff are four, namely : 
Mr. Charles H. Imhoff, Cashier of the Union Savings Bank ; Mr. 
Joseph B. Imhoff, Superintendent of the Lincoln Electric Light 
Company, and Misses Ono May and Hattie J. Imhoff, residing at 

Mr. Louie Meyer is one of Lincoln's most energetic, successful, and 
able business men and financiers. From a small beginning, sixteen 
years ago, he has worked his way steadily upward, in the face of ob- 
stacles and discouragements, until he is now at the head of the exten- 
ive wholesale and retail business in general merchandising, which he 
conducts at numbers 108 and 110 North Tenth street, east of Govern- 
ment Square, under the firm name of L. Meyer & Co. Mr. Meyer is 
one of the typical men of success in the city, and has kept pace with its 
growth, from village days to its arrival at a city greatness. 

Mr. Meyer was born August 12, 1853, near Carlsbad, Austria. 
His father, Dr. David Meyer, was then a physician of prominence in 
that locality, and since has acquired celebrity owing to his fifty-five 
years of practice, and to the fact of his being the oldest member of 


his profession residing in the empire of Austria. His mother, Mary 
Becker-Meyer, was a lady of refinement and pleasing social disposi- 
tion, highly esteemed by the people of her acquaintance. Mr. Meyer 
is the fifth of the eight children of Dr. and Mrs. Mary Meyer. 

Louie Meyer attended the schools of his native country from the 
age of five years to that of fourteen, and was industrious and ready in 
acquiring learning. After having received a good, practical educa- 
tion, he entered a store in the town of Carlsbad, and spent a year as 
a clerk, learning the business. Then, feeling that there were greater 
opportunities in the United States than in his native land, for a young 
man of courage and energy, he resolved to come to America. There- 
fore, he sailed for the shores of his adopted land in the summer of 
1870. He landed at New York and proceeded to Des Moines, Iowa, 
where he spent four or five months with relatives. 

Having heard of the fair prospects of Lincoln, he came to what 
was then a very youthful and struggling capital, in January, 1871, 
and engaged with the merchants, Rich & Oppenheimer, as a clerk. 
He performed his duties faithfully for four years and became a skill- 
ful salesman, thoroughly educated in his line of business. 

Feeling that he understood the lay of the land, and having some 
capital, he decided to engage in business on his own account, and 
therefore opened a grocery store in 1874, when about twenty-one 
years old. He pushed his business during the succeeding three years, 
and his trade was growing steadily and surely ; but the flames devoured 
his stock and store in March, 1877. 

His characteristic energy and resolution was here manifested in a 
signal degree. Though seriously crippled in his finances by the mis- 
fortune he had just passed through, he did not hesitate a moment, but 
immediately began to rebuild his business and his fortune, and has 
never ceased to push his affairs from that date to the present time 
with all the vim of his young manhood. The rewards of his patience, 
perseverance, and skill, are now manifest in the extensive and growing 
business of L. Meyer & Co., and the esteem of his fellow citizens is also 
fully and unreservedly shown in various ways. He added dry goods 
in 1880 and now does an extensive jobbing as well as retail business. 

For two years Mr. Meyer served as treasurer of the Board of Trade 
of Lincoln, a very difficult position to fill successfully, and it is safe 
to sav that he would have been elected again had he not declined to 


serve. His management of the affairs of this office was 'able, and 
his energy in working for the public welfare was not excelled, if 
equaled, by any other man in the city. 

In fact, Mr. Meyer is rcognized as one of the most able financiers 
and safe business men of this city, and ranks among Lincoln's fore- 
most citizens in any important public enterprise. This is manifested 
in various ways, one of which is his active connection with the work 
of the Board of Trade, already referred to. Another was his election 
to the City Council, in April, 1888, from his ward, the Fifth. Mayor 
Graham has placed Mr. Meyer at the head of the Finance Committee 
of the City Council, probably the most difficult place to fill in the city 
government, owing to the constant requirements for new expenditures 
and enlarged credits, growing out of the rapid development of this 
young and expanding metropolis. Mr. Meyer has proven equal to 
the severe tests of his ability, and his recommendations always receive 
respectful attention and consideration. Mr. Meyer was married to 
Miss Anna Gunarson, of this city, a lady of many high qualities of 
mind and heart, on October 2, 1879. Three children cheer their 
home, including one son, Max Meyer, and two daughters, Pauline 
and Leah Meyer. They are among the most bright and excellent 
young people of the city. 

Mr. Meyer and Mrs. Meyer rank among the leading people of Lin- 
coln's social circles, and justly have the respect of the entire city. 

In January, 1887, Hon. H. T. Clarke, who was then and had for 
years been one of the most prominent and enterprising business men 
of Omaha, one of the branches of business in which he was engaged 
being wholesale drugs, concluded that Lincoln offered better advan- 
tages for the wholesale trade, and consequently changed his place of 
business in that line to this city. 

For the accommodation of this business Mr. Clarke erected, at 
the corner of Eighth and P streets, a magnificent four-story brick 
and stone building, 100 by 150 feet, in which a heavy stock of drugs 
was placed, and business commenced. The firm of the H. T. Clarke 
Drug Company is composed of the following gentlemen : Hon. H. 
T. Clarke, John-C. Clarke, W. E. Clarke, W. C. Mills, and Charles J. 
Daubach, all gentlemen of business experience and ability. Ever 
since the opening of this house its business has been steadily growing, 


until now it amounts to more than a half million per year. It is one 
of the institutions of which Lincoln is proud. 

Among the early business men should be mentioned Pflug Bros.,. 
Martin and Jacob, who were merchants here in 1868 and for several 
years later. They were active workers for the good of the city. 

The work of Elder J. M. Young, W. T. Donovan, Milton Lang- 
don, Seth P. Galey, and John Cadman, has been referred to elsewhere. 

No man deserves more credit for good work in building up the 
moral and social interests of the city than Elder Henry T. Davis, now 
pastor of Trinity M. E. church, and who has been in the ministry in 
this county longer than any other man now here. His brother, Mr_ 
A. M. Davis, now conducting a wholesale and retail carpet house at 
1112 O street, has for many years aided to push the interests of the 
city forward. Mrs. A. M. Davis has also been and still is a leader in 
the cause of charity and humanity. 

Messrs. Austin and Oliver N. Humphrey, of the Humphrey Bros. 
Hardware Company, have been leading builders up of the city for 
twenty years. Dr. H. G. Gilbert established a drug and hardware 
store at 101 North Ninth street late in 1867, under the firm name of 
Hawley, Gilbert & Co. In the spring of 1869 Humphrey Bros, 
bought the hardware interest of Mr. Hawley, and in the fall of that 
year bought out Dr. Gilbert, since which time it has been Humphrey 
Bros., and the Humphrey Hardware Company, the latter company 
having been incorporated in 1881, when C. J. Heffley became a mem- 
ber. The elegant four-story brick block at 101 and 103 North Ninth, 
street, and their large wholesale and retail implement and hardware 
trade, attests their success. They are ever ready to aid public enter- 
prises, Mr. Austin Humphrey being a prominent officer in the State 
Agricultural Society and a member of the city Board of Public Works.. 
Mrs. O. N. Humphrey is a prominent worker in the charities and 
social progress of the city. 

Bohanan Brothers, M. G. and F. H., have been active builders of 
the city from pioneer days, having been leading business men since 
1868. They have conducted their meat market at 937 O street since 
that date, and their livery barn at 221 South Tenth street for many 
years. Their brick block, on the southwest corner of Tenth and N, 
is one of the largest in the city. It was built in 1887, and forms only 
a part of their possessions. 


T. P. Kennard and John Gillespie helped found the city, and have 
•ever been active in building it up, Mr. Kennard now being a director 
in the city Board of Trade. 

Few men have done more to build the city than J. J. Butler, who 
-erected the first brick block in Lincoln, and who has built more blocks 
than any other man in the place, with one or two exceptions. He 
now owns two brick blocks, and has commenced the erection of a 
third. He is a prominent member of the Irish National League, 
having been president of the Lincoln Branch. 

Fred Funke, builder of the Funke Opera House, James Ledwith, 
proprietor of the Ledwith Block at P and Eleventh, and J. L. Mc- 
•Connell, have contributed to the material prosperity of the city. 

"W. H. B. Stout is one of the largest building contractors of the 
State, and has handled very extensive business interests during the 
past seventeen years. He was elected a member of the State' Legis- 
lature in 1868, from Blair, took the contract to build the State Peni- 
tentiary in 1870, in connection with J. M. Jamison, and removed to 
Lincoln in 1871. In 1877 he became the lessee of the State Peni- 
tentiary for six years. He built the Burlington passenger depot, the 
county jail, and the present State Capitol, completing the latter on 
the first of the present year. He has been interested in other large 
building contracts, and is now engaged in making paving brick and 
laying the same on the streets of Lincoln, Stout & Buckstaff having 
-contracts for several districts. Probably no man has done more for 
Lincoln than W. H. B. Stout. 

Gran. Ensign is a pioneer business man, having been in the livery 
■and transfer business here since 1869, and been very successful. His 
interests have grown from a small shed back of the Atwood House 
■on Ninth street,, to the large brick structure at 215 to 221 South 

Raymond Bros. & Co., wholesale grocers, established in Lincoln 
in 1872, and have been among our leading business men ever since. 
The firm consists of I, M. and A. S. Raymond, and G. H. Clark. 
They have done more to push Lincoln trade into new territory, and 
protect Lincoln's interests against railroad discriminations, than any 
other firm. They are now leading capitalists of the city, and prom- 
inent in pushing its interests. Their large house at O and Eighth, 
does an immense jobbing trade. 


In this connection should be mentioned Plummer, Perry & Co.„ 
wholesale grocers, at 109-113 North Ninth street. This firm is com- 
posed of Eli Plummer, E. A. Perry, and John Fitzgerald, and is 
very popular and successful. The gentlemen composing this firm are 
among the most liberal and enterprising in Lincoln, always ready to- 
contribute aid to the success of the city. Mr. Plummer is a leading 
member of the Board of Trade. 

H. P. Lau & Co., wholesale grocers, in the Clarke Block, on the- 
corner of Eighth and P streets, do a growing wholesale jobbing trade,, 
and deserve an honorable place in the list of our large business houses- 
Mr. Lau is a leading capitalist of our city. 

No jobbing house has been more successful, all things considered,, 
than the wholesale grocery of Hargreaves Bros., on the southwest cor- 
ner of O and Eighth streets. The firm is composed of A. E. and W- 
B. Hargreaves, and their business was begun in 1874, with a capital 
of $28. Now they have a large brick block there, and do ah exten- 
sive business. They are among the most enterprising of our citizens 
in protecting the welfare of the city. 

J. A. Buckstaif, Secretary and Treasurer of the Badger Lumber 
Company, is one of the foremost business men of Lincoln. He con- 
ducts a large lumber trade, is engaged in manufacturing paving brick r 
and is connected with extensive paving contracts. He is ever liberal 
and enterprising in aiding to build the city. 

L. W. Billingsley is a pioneer attorney of the city, has built up a 
large practice, and is now senior member of the law firm of Billings- 
ley & Woodward. His elegant brick block at 210 South Eleventh 
street is one of the fine structures of the city. He has been promi- 
nently connected with the business and growth of the city for twenty 
years, having served in the City Council repeatedly. , 

C. E. Montgomery, whose business block adjoins the Billingsley 
block, at the corner of Eleventh and N streets, is one of our most en- 
terprising citizens. Examples of his help in building up Lincoln are 
seen in his block just referred to, Odell's restaurant next east, and the 
elegant livery stable erected at a cost of $16,000 on M street, south 
side, between Eleventh and Twelfth. 

T. H. Hyde, of the Lincoln News Company, is a pioneer in the 
city, and no one loves to lend encouragement to the city's growth 
better than he. 


Messrs. C. H. Gere and H. D. Hathaway, of the State Journal, have 
been closely identified with nearly every important step in the city's 
development, almost from its location, and deserve great credit for 
their work in giving Lincoln one of the best newspapers west of Chi- 

Amasa Cobb assisted to found the First National Bank, and has al- 
ways been an useful citizen. He is now a member of the State Su- 
preme Court. 

John R. Clark, President of the First National Bank, and'Secretary 
of the State Journal Company, is an useful and enterprising citizen) 
who has extended a helping hand to nearly all important public en- 
terprises for the benefit of the city. 

T. M. Marquett has practiced law in Lancaster and Lincoln for 
twenty-six years, though for the first few years a resident of Platts- 
mouth. He has always been a man of broad views in matters of pub- 
lic interest, and has worthily earned a leading position in the city as 
One of its best, wisest, and most useful citizens, an able lawyer and 
orator, and a man of great public experience. 

John H. Ames, is one of the pioneers, an able lawyer, and a man 
who has been conspicuous in pushing the city. 

N. S. Harwood is a prominent financier, capitalist, and attorney of 
the city, and a leading citizen. 

R. H. Oakley, now President of the Board of Trade, has proven a 
very strong man in that position, and through his energy, tact, and 
wisdom, the board is in the best business condition it ever has been in, 
and its work for the prosperity of the city has been most commendable. 

T. W. Lowrey is a very extensive grain dealer, a capitalist, and 
an enterprising citizen, always ready to help in pushing the city's- 
welfare. He is a prominent member of the Board of Trade. 

H. J. Walsh has been identified with the city's business interests 
from an early day. He built the Academy of Music block, at the 
southwest corner of O and Eleventh streets, in company with Israel 
Putnam, in 1873 and 1882. He is prominently connected with the 
Lincoln Gas Company, and has been, almost from its organization, a 
leading stockholder. He has been a member of the City Council, and 
has served on the Board of Trustees of the Asylum for the Blind 
He was one of the trustees of the city of Lincoln when the corpora- 
tion was organized, in 1869. 


J. Z. Briscoe is one of the most liberal citizens of Lincoln, and one 
of the most useful men in both business and general progress. The 
successful founding of the Christian College owes much to his liber- 
ality, courage, wisdom, and industry. He gave the institution $25,000. 
He has been a member of the City Council, and is always a generous 
and useful worker for the city's interest, both material and moral. 

Frank L. Sheldon has helped greatly in building the city, having 
been a founder of the street railway service. He erected during 1 887-8 
the elegant block on the southwest corner of N and Eleventh, the 
block adjoining the Windsor Hotel on the south, and his elegant res- 
idence at Fourteenth and B, streets. He ranks among our most enter- 
prising business men. 

W. W. Wilson has from the beginning been a faithful worker for 
the good of the capital city. He, with W. H. B. Stout and T. F. 
Barnes, built the City Block, on the northwest corner of N and 
Eleventh streets. 

T. F. Barnes, builder of the Windsor Hotel, is a man of nerve, 
such as it takes to found a city. His energy is witnessed in the brick 
walls of more than one block. 

John R. Webster's enterprise is to some degree witnessed in the 
Webster Block, north of Temple Hall, on South Eleventh. He has 
been an industrious builder of the city for many years. 

J. H. McMurtry has had few if any superiors as an energetic, 
courageous citizen in developing the progress of Lincoln, where he 
has lived for seventeen years. He has ever been ready with means, 
counsel, and labor, to advertise the city's merits, push home enter- 
prise, and has not feared to cast his fortunes with the city. He 
erected the brick block where the county offices and court rooms now 
are, on the west side of South Eleventh, near M. His faith in and 
work for Lincoln has been rewarded in the development of extensive 
property interests within and without the limits of the place. 

C. C. and L. C. Burr have erected a splendid monument to their 
industry and business courage in the magnificent Burr Block, at the 
northeast corner of O and Twelfth streets. Architecturally this is, 
perhaps, the handsomest building in Nebraska, being six stories in 
height exclusive of the basement, of rustic-stone finish, and beauti- 
fully designed in every detail. 

S. B. Pound was one of the very earliest merchants on the site of 


this city, and he became one of its earliest attorneys, and until recently 
was a very popular District Judge. He has ever been a respected and 
excellent citizen since the foundation of the city. 

J. E,. and L. C. Richards are among the city's leading capitalists, 
and their prominence as builders of the city is marked by the elegant 
block which bears their name at the northeast corner of O and Elev- 
enth streets. 

A. D. Kitchen is a prominent contributor to the city's growth, be- 
ing now engaged in building two or three fine brick blocks on O street, 
between Ffteenth and Sixteenth. He has lent a helping hand in de- 
veloping Lincoln in many other respects. 

J. C. McBride has been a courageous and energetic citizen in the 
city's interests for years, having been liberal with means and ready 
with other assistance and encouragement. He has been postmaster of 
the city, twice a member of the Legislature, and prominently identified 
with the work of the Board of Trade. He has a fine brick block at 
the northeast corner of P and Twelfth streets. 

Dr. Latta is now completing an elegant block of red sand-stone at 
129 South Eleventh. When done it will be one of the finest in the 
city. It is in room four of this block that this history of Lincoln 
was written. 

John Zehrung has been an active citizen, his brick block at 1213 
and 1219 O street being an evidence of his substantial work as a 
builder of the city. 

O. P. Mason and C. O. Whedon are a firm of attorneys about as 
widely known as any in Nebraska. Judge Mason was on the su- 
preme bench in 1866, and was a distinguished Secretary of the State 
Board of Transportation, previous to the present year, for two years. 
C O. Whedon was a member of the House of the State Legislature 
during the Sixteenth, Seventeenth, and Eighteenth sessions, and has 
held various public positions in the city. Both men have been active 
and influential citizens throughout much of the city's history. 

A genuinely earnest builder of the financial, moral, and intellectual 
features of the city's prosperity, is C. C. Munson. He is a worker 
with purse, hand, and heart, for the general good. He is building up 
a large wholesale lumber and lime trade, is helping to erect the Chris- 
tian University, is a director in the German National Bank, and an 
active worker in the Board of Trade. 


Prominent, earnest, and valuable, workers for the city's develop- 
ment, in the present Board of Trade, are : Joseph Boehmer, C. J. 
Ernst, Mason Gregg, M. L. Trester, A. H. Weir, C. T. Brown, C. 
A. Atkinson, and C. W. Mosher. 

C. H. Hutchins has erected two fine brick blocks in the past two 
years, one on Ninth near N, and the other on O near Fifteenth. 

Dr. W. G. Houtz has proven himself a valuable and enterprising 
citizen and builder of the city. 

W. E. Kelley, John Doolittle, Hon. E. P. Eoggen, A. Hurlbut, 
EL H. Dean, John Burks, J. H. Harley, and John J. Gillilan, have 
all shown enterprise and energy, and have done good service as city 

J. E. Utt, who, as the very able Secretary of the Board of Trade 
during 1887-8 was mainly instrumental in securing equitable freight 
tariffs for Lincoln from Pacific Coast points, rendered the city and 
State a great and lasting service. He is now interested in the paper 
mill located in the southwest part of the city. 

John Morrison, who was the earliest tailor in the city, except Chris- 
tian F. Damrow, having been here since 1869, is still doing a good 
business at 121 North Eleventh. He is one of the popular pioneers. 

Few men have had more genuine success than H. H. Schaberg, 
Beginning as a blacksmith, with his industry and persistent attention 
to business, in a little shop on the southeast corner of Eleventh and 
P streets, in 1869, he has hammered his way up to the possession of 
the brick block on that corner, the presidency of the German National 
Bank, and a place among the large capitalists of the city. His success 
shows what men can do in Lincoln who work and use their oppor- 

John B. Wright has been a citizen of Lincoln for fourteen years, 
having originally come from Rochester, New York, where he was 
born in 1847. He is one of the largest dealers in grain in this city 
or State, being interested in forty-two different elevators in Nebraska 
and Kansas. He makes a specialty of handling flax seed. He has 
enlarged and improved his big elevator at M and Eighth streets this 
season, preparatory to opening the immense fall business he will have 
to manage. He has ever been an active citizen of Lincoln. He was 
elected Mayor of the city both in 1880 and 1881, and was a member 
of the House of the State Legislature of the Nineteenth session in 


1883. He is now a leading member of the Board of Trade, and did 
good work in placing the board upon the excellent working basis on 
which it now stands. 

H. W. Hardy, now editor of the New Republic, has been twice 
Mayor of the city, but is most distinguished as the Lincoln William 
Lloyd Garrison, fighting in favor of temperance, morals, and the im- 
provement of the social welfare of men. He is an uncompromising 
warrior for the principles of purity and progress, and is the best 
known character in Nebraska in that work, except alone the late John 
B. Finch. 

Elder P. W. Howe, Chaplain of the State penitentiary and City 
Missionary, is the executive officer of the City Relief and aid Society, 
an organization designed to help and protect the weak, needy, and 
helpless, especially women and children. He is doing a noble work, 
having followed this line of benevolent service for nine years in New 
York city, and nearly as many in Lincoln. 

Albert Watkins, for nearly four years past, has been postmaster of 
Lincoln, and a public-spirited citizen. General Victor Vifquain, hav- 
ing founded the Daily State Democrat in 1879, Mr. Watkins bought 
it in 1882 and continued its editor until appointed postmaster, in No- 
vember, 1885, though Mr. Vifquain bought an interest in 1884. The 
paper passed into the hands of J. D. Calhoun in August of 1886, who 
conducted it successfully for two years. 

Palmer Way was probably the first tinner of Lincoln, and one of 
the first hardware men. He has been a business man of the city for 
twenty -two years. 

R. C. Outcalt, cashier of the Capital National Bank, is the oldest 
banker of Lincoln, Nelson C. Brock excepted. He first entered the 
bank of Sweet & Brock, in 1870, and has been continuously connected 
with the banking business in the city ever since. He is one of the 
best posted financiers of Lincoln. 

Hundreds of other men might be named, whose influence and wealth 
have, for varying periods of years, been used toward making Lincoln 
what she is to-day ; but enough have been given to show that Lin- 
coln's growth has been, in part at least, the result of the faith in her 
future held by her citizens. Future years will undoubtedly show a 
continuation of the wonderful progress made by the city in the past 
twenty-two years. Such, at least, are the signs of the times. 

Erratum — On page 151, under cut of Sweet's Block, read "Northeast corner of 

O and Tenth." 

Jjndell • Hotel, 



m be 

° " S Q 

W o r^ 


3 «i w 

Corner 13th & M Streets, 



Tote /*(* S(?rrt Car Line from B it iff. iqiof, and Will Street Line/mm M. P. <fc F. K. & M. V. Depots. 


Merchant Tailor, 

121 North Eleventh Street, 









All American Watches, Jewelry, Blocks, Solid Silver Ware, Etc, 
1035 O Street, Lincoln, Neb. 


1121 N Street. 

The Best Appointed and Most Popular Dining Hall in the West. 
Elegant Service and Seasonable Menu. 

Terms for Table Board, $4.50 per Week. Single Meals, 25 Gents. 



WatGhes, GloGks, Jewelry, Diamonds, Etc 

Zehrung Block, 143 South 12th St. Lincoln, Neb. 


No. 135 North Twelfth Street. 





All the Best Brands of Rye and Bourbon. 

Finch's Golden Wedding Rye a Specialty. 

Genuine Cognac Brandy, and Imported Ports and Sherries. 




~^S< ) A P#- 


Lincoln, Nebraska. 


Laundry, Bath, and Toilet Soap. 



Made to Order with Name of House Imprinted on each Cake. 



Livery, Feed, and Boarding Stables. 


Turns out the Most Stylish Single or Double Rigs 
in the West. The Prices are made so Rea- 
sonable that it is cheaper to hire of 
Skinner than to keep a Rig of 
your own. 


The Hatter and Furnisher. 



Cor. O and 11th Streets. LINCOLN, NEBRASKA. 

X. S. Hauwood. John H. Ames. W. R. Keli.ey. 


Attorneys at Law 

Attorneys and Directors of Lincoln National Bank. 

Farmers and Merchants Insurance Co., 

Lxnsrcoxjisr, zcntieib. 

Capital, $100,000.00. Assets, Jan. i, 1889, $229,342,06. 

Surplus, as regards Policy Holders, $227,500,67. 


226 South Eleventh Street, Lincoln, Neb. Ground Floor. 

T. W. TOWNSEND, Prop. 

Photographs, Crayons, and Bromides, finished in the Latest Style of Art. 

Fremont, Elkhorn and Missouri Valley 

IR, Jk_ I L IR, O ^ ID 



The Black Hills 

— AND — 



Chicago & Northwestern, and the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis* Omaha R. R. 


Direct Passenger and Fast Freight Line 


Lincoln, Omaha, Hastings, 

The Black Hills and Central Wyoming, 

— AND — 

Chicago, St, Paul, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, 


North, East and West 


Gen'l Manager. G. F. Agent. Gen'l Pass, Agent. 




+ LINE, 


Favorite Route, 




Pullman Palace Sleepers, 

Free Reclining Chair Cars, 
Pullman Dining Cars, 

And Modern Day Coaches, 

All Colorado, Kansas, Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Oregon, Cal- 
ifornia, Washington, and Puget Sound Points. 


For Rates, Pamphlets, and other information, apply to 

E. B. SLOSSON, City Ticket Agent, 

I 044 O Street, LINCOLN, NEB. 


General Manager. Traffic Manager. Gen'l Pass. Agent,