© MJH for Buffalo County NEGenWeb Project, 2001

History of Buffalo County
and Its People

by Samuel Clay Bassett


CHAPTER XXXV (continued)

Ella M. Morris (Dan), Mrs. Helen Nye (F.A.), Mrs. Edith E. Offil (A. V.), Mrs. Rebecca Offil (M.), Mrs. Helen Packard (F. A.), Mrs. Henrietta Roby (F. F.), Mrs. Emma Robinson (F. L.), Mrs. Annie Scott (E.J.), Mrs. Anna Selleck (J. M.), Mrs. Ina Sammis (H. B.), Mrs. Grace Steadman (Jos.), Mrs. Irene Stuart, Mrs. Mattie Shafto (E.), Mrs. Louise Smith (L.), Mrs. Olive M. H. Strong (J. A.), Mrs. Frances Sumption (A. O.), Mrs. Esther Sward (C G.), Mrs. Effie Sweeley (S. M.), Mrs. Huldah Saylor (J. C.), Mrs. Effie Sullivan (R.), Mrs. Maude Scoutt (W. J.), Mrs. Ruth Sowles (B. W.), Mrs. Sue G. Tarbell, Mrs. Louella Tolbert (L. W.), Mrs. Mary Tompkins (C. O.), Mrs. Sletta Turner (W. T.), Mrs. Elizabeth Trindle (J. F.), Mrs. Elizabeth Troupe (M. N.), Mrs. Hattie G. Webbert (H. A.), Mrs. Emma D. Whiteaker (G. W.), Mrs. Mary Whedon (F. L.), Mrs. Emma C. Wort (D.) and Mrs. Rosa Wilson (John).


    A postoffice was established at Kearney Junction February 9, 1872, with Rev. Asbury Collins as postmaster. It is understood the office was kept at first in the Junction House, located in the center of section No. 2. Later George E. Smith was appointed postmaster and moved the office to the business center of the city.
    The silver anniversary edition of the Kearney Daily Hub, 1913, relates the following interesting account of those who have served as postmaster at Kearney following the term of George E. Smith:
    "R. M. Grimes was appointed postmaster at Kearney by President Garfield and that is as far back as this history need to go. Postmaster Grimes was removed by President Cleveland when the administration changed and J. C. Morgan was appointed, but was soon succeeded by E. R. Watson, who died while in office, and E. Fred Wiley was appointed during the latter part of Cleveland administration, and was postmaster when the Hub was established twenty-five years ago.
    "Rice H. Eaton, one of the founders of the Central Nebraska Press, which the Hub succeeded, and for a short time connected with the Hub after it succeeded the Press, was appointed postmaster soon after President Harrison elected, and served four years.
    "Four years later Cleveland again succeeded Harrison and J. C. Crocker was appointed, serving some months longer than his 4-year term because of delay in making an appointment after President McKinley was elected. His successor was Henry. Gibbons, who served four years. Next in succession was K. O. Holmes, who also held the office during a 4-year term.
    "M. A. Brown, the present incumbent, was appointed in January, 1906, and took possession of the office on February 19th following. The first appointment was made by President Roosevelt and the second by President Taft. The second term will expire on January 31, 1914.
    "In 1888, when the Hub first did business with the postoffice, it was located on Central Avenue in what is now the Hazlett jewelry store. Soon after the appointment of Postmaster Eaton the office was removed to the Scott Block to


the room first occupied by the Hub, which was removed to another part of the block. The office remained in this small room until 1911, badly cramped for space, until removing to the new Federal Building in September, l911.
    Following M. A. Brown, C. C. Carrig was appointed postmaster by President Wilson in 1915. Phil Lambert served as deputy postmaster under M. A. Brown's administration, and was continuing to so serve in the year 1916, under Postmaster Carrig.


    The following description of the postoffice building at Kearney is from the silver anniversary edition of the Daily Hub--1913:
    "The finest postoffice building in any city of its class in the United States," is the general admission made by those who are informed, and so understood in the office of the supervising architect at Washington. The entire cost of the building and fixtures was approximately $120,000. It is located at the corner of Central Avenue and Twenty-fourth Street, facing west, with a side entrance to the lock-box corridor on Twenty-fourth Street, facing south.
    In general the style of the building is classic, with Corinthian details, although touches of Italian renaissance are discernible, especially on the interior, while many noticeable features of the American fireproof, steel-frame building were visible in the building in the course of its construction. The architect's drawings and plans were, indeed, intended to show a model office building of a new type which the supervising architect had in mind, and the Kearney building was one of the first and apparently is the best of this new type of building produced.
    The building rests on foundations 93 feet long and 65 feet wide. Above ground, basement walls of New Hampshire granite blocks rise to 5 feet above the surface of the lawn, and above this the superstructure walls are of the best quality and a very beautiful tint of Bedford sandstone. The elevation from the basement to the roof is 52 feet, while the cornice extends 6 feet above the roof line, and the top of the flag-pole is 75 feet above the basement line.


    Entering the lock-box corridor, entrance is through a commodious vestibule with revolving doors. Inside, you are confronted by the lock-box compartment, in bronze, with Yale and Towne locks. The postmaster's office is at the right. The surrounding woodwork is of quarter-sawed white oak. The walls are of solid white Vermont marble highly polished, and ceiling of the same in the lock-box corridor, making a very striking effect.
    Turning to the left, there is a splendid view of the main corridor approached from the Central Avenue entrance, with wide, easy-rising granite steps. The vestible here is very beautiful, and on either side are the writing desks topped with heavy plate glass. Facing this vestibule are the mailing openings, with the general delivery window at the farther end. On the angle at the left of the general delivery window are the stamp, registry, money order and postal savings windows.


    The floor of the main rotunda and the lock-box corridor is composed of terrazza composed of white and sienna marble in cement, with pattern blocks of Tennessee marble interspersed. The walls and casings are all highly polished marble and the ceilings are a pure white stucco.
    On this floor are a large, well lighted and perfectly ventilated workroom, the assistant and postmaster's room, and money order and postal savings clerk, in northwest corner; postmaster's room in southeast corner; ladies' toilet; and vestibule for forwarding and receiving mail.
    The stairway is very beautiful, leading to the second story, which is allotted for office purposes. There are five of these rooms. The long corridor on this floor is chaste, simple and exquisite. Two toilet rooms are located in the north-east corner.
    The basement is complete, with very large boiler room, janitor's storeroom, sitting room or waiting room for employes, and a capacious coal room. The steam plant is the best in the city. The building is lighted with electricity. Gas is used for emergency lighting and also for heating water in summer. Convenience and comfort are fully provided for.
    Two employes have the entire care of the building. The postmaster is the custodian of the building.
    Length of foundation, 93 feet.
    Width of foundation, 65 feet.
    Height of building, 58 feet. .
    Height of top of flag pole, 75 feet.
    Number of rooms, exclusive of halls and lobby, seventeen.
    Material of basement, New Hampshire granite.
    Material of building, Bedford sandstone.
    Material of floors, Terraza and Tennessee marble.
    Material of walls of first floor, White Vermont granite.
    Material of woodwork, quarter-sawed white oak.
    Material of floors, maple.


    The first free delivery service was established in the early part of the term of Postmaster Eaton. There were four carriers, viz: Charles Mott, Alex Everson, Amos ,L. Graham and William Crawford. The first substitute carrier was E. S. Dorsey, who afterward became a carrier and died while in the service.
    There are now five regular carriers where six could be used to advantage.
    The work of the office now requires six clerks, as against four clerks eight years ago.
    Rural free delivery has grown until there are six carriers, serving approximately one hundred families each.
    The growth of the business has been steady but not phenomenal. Receipts in 1903 were $10,214.34 annually. In 1913 they will be (estimated) $23,000.


Dr. M. A. Hoover

    In the year 1883, during Mayor Webb's administration, the Kearney Volunteer Fire Department was organized. On July 11, 1883, the Kearney Hook and Ladder Company was incorporated, and on November 7, 1883, was incorporated the Wide Awake Hose Company.
    From this small beginning, over a third of a century ago, has developed the splendid organizations of today (1916) with their up-to-date equipments, second to none in the state under volunteer firemen.
    Now, as at the time of its organization, it has the best young blood in the city in its ranks. Much property has been saved by its efficient work and deeds of valor beyond description have been performed.
    This organization from its formation to the present time has had the support of the city officials, the moral, and frequently, the financial support of its citizens. Kearney is indeed proud of the records of her fire fighters.


    The City National Bank was established in 1889 with a capital stock of $100,000. Its first officers were F. G. Keens, president; J. S. Adair, cashier. Among the directors were J. S. Adair, W. R. Adair, H. C. Andrews, Henry Gibbons, K. O. Holmes.
    Later the capital stock was reduced to $50,000. In the year 1916 it had a capital stock of $50,000; surplus, $66,000; deposits $1,100,000.
    Its officers are: Dan Morris, president; George Burgert, vice president; C. W. Norton, cashier; F. W. Turner, assistant cashier; directors, K. O. Holmes, chairman; Dan Morris, George Burgert, C. W. Norton.
    The Farmers Bank of Kearney was organized under the laws of Nebraska in 1890, with a capital stock of $50,000, of which $25,000 was paid in. Its officers were Lew Robertson, president; B. H. Goodell, vice president; James A. Boyd, cashier. In 1915 Mr. Boyd was still serving as cashier. In 1897 John G. Lowe succeeded to the presidency and W. O. King became vice president.
    On its twenty-fifth anniversary, April 2, 1915, the bank had a capital stock of $25,000; surplus, $10,000; deposits, $294,386.
    The officers are: John G. Lowe, president; W. O. King, vice president; James A. Boyd, cashier; Leslie R. Prior, assistant cashier; directors, John G. Lowe, James A. Boyd, Wm. Schramm, W. O. King.
    The Central National Bank of Kearney was organized in January, 1903, with a capital of $50,000. The officers were W. T. Auld, president; A. U. Dann, cashier. In 1912 Mr. Dann retired and J. S. Donnell was elected cashier.
    On May 1, 1915, the bank had a capital of $50,000; surplus and profits, $32,041; deposits, $237,340. The officers were J. S. Donnell, president; D. T. McDonald, cashier; directors, John Lowenstien, W. L. Stickle, J. S. Donnell, D. T. McDonald. In the year 1912 the Central National Bank took over and absorbed the Commercial National Bank of Kearney. This latter bank was organized in 1897 with a capital of $100,000. Its officers and directors were T. B. Garrison,


Sr., president; A. E. Waldron, vice president; R. D. Garrison, cashier; directors, R. F. Cruit, J. E.Lowenstien, J. F. Saup, D. Wort.
    "The Commercial National Bank paid dollar for dollar and quit business with clean hands."


    In the year 1886 a stock company was formed to erect a flouring mill at Kearney. James H. Davis was president of the company, and among the stock-holders, as recalled from memory, were H. F. Flint, C. Putnam, W. C. Tillson, John J. Bartlett.    C. Putnam superintended the erection of the mill, a sufficient guarantee that it was well built and all material and equipment first class and up-to-date for the times.
    About the year 1898 Frank H. Roby purchased the property from the United States court, since which time the mill has several times been enlarged and made modern in every respect. When built the capacity of the mill was 150 barrels of flour per day. In 1915 the capacity was 500 barrels. Its grain storage capacity was 160,000 bushels and the approximate grain milled in the year 500,000 bushels.
    The owner is Frank F. Roby.


    The first plant of the Electric Company was constructed in 1887, in connection with the Kearney Canal, and was designed to use water from that canal for power purposes. The water wheels had a capacity of 366 horse power, and the electrical equipment consisted of a generator to develop current for arc lights to light the streets of Kearney, and a small direct-current generator for domestic lighting. This equipment was added to from time to time, and in 1894 additional water wheels, having approximately 800 horse power capacity, were installed. These wheels operated electrical generators to nearly their capacity and the current was distributed about the city for light and power, as well the operation of an electric street railway.
    As the art of developing and transmitting electrical energy advanced all of the original equipment at the power house was abandoned and new machines of the latest type replaced it. Before 1905 the character of the electrical equipment was twice changed, and the machinery then installed has again yielded to the advances made in constructing such apparatus, and now the equipment of the electric plant consists of the latest designed and most efficient water wheel generators ever produced, and a steam turbine of 2,000 horse power capacity, operating with quadruple steam expansion, condensing, furnishes a supplemental steam unit for use in case of emergency. This steam turbine generator set operates at 3,600 revolutions per minute. The boiler setting consists of three large Kewanee boilers, fire tube type, the boiler water being the condensed steam water, which is used over and over again, after first passing through feed-water heaters that bring the temperature to 204 before the water enters the boilers.
    The water wheel generator equipment consists of a pair of Leffell wheels,


operating under a 56-foot head, having 1,350 horse power capacity, which are direct-connected to a general electric generator of 1,000 kilowatt capacity. The steam turbine set, and the water wheel generators can be operated either separately or together, and they develop an amount of electric energy largely in excess of the present requirements of the City of Kearney.
    During the year 1916 the company will erect transmission lines to send electrical energy to the adjacent villages, and for use in the farming districts.
    This property is owned by The Kearney Water & Electrical Powers Co., of which C. M. Scoutt is president and Will J. Scoutt secretary-treasurer.
    (Note--Contributed by W. J. Scoutt.)


    In 1868 three brothers of the name of Maxwell, of Beatrice, Neb., erected a small gas plant and laid about four miles of gas mains.
    This plant was operated in a small way and at a financial loss for many years, the plant changing hands a number of times, and the service was never very good.
    In the year 1908 the Midway Gas Company acquired the property and entirely rebuilt it and extended the gas mains to all of the more densely populated districts of the city.
    The plant now has complete duplicate settings, each with a capacity of approximately two million feet of gas per month, and a storage capacity of 75,000 cubic feet.
    In 1915 there are thirteen miles of gas mains and nearly six hundred customers, and the yearly output of the company is about ten million cubic feet.

Dr. M. A. Hoover

    The records disclose that from 1875 to 1916, 115 doctors have registered in the county clerk's office. Of these twenty-six are dead.
    As regards the class or school of medicine to which they belonged, the records disclose 26 as eclectic, 42 as regular, 6 as homeopathy, 8 as osteopath, 3 as mid-wives, 28 the school not given. Thirteen are now practicing in Kearney of the regular, homeopathy and eclectic, 4 osteopath, and 14 others in the county. Of the remaining 58, they are scattered from the Atlantic to the Pacific, from Canada to the gulf. There are no records available as to their present locations, and no way of finding out how many of these 58 have died since leaving the county.
    The old doctors who served as pioneers and suffered the hardships and did the greater service to humanity are dead. All were great men in the upbuilding of the country. Drs. J. T. Brown, John C. Hull, Theo E. Webb, C. T. Dildine, Henry Baker, J. J. Saville, C. A. Jackson, M. Saville, E. Bodman, S. D. Steere, D. H. Hite, Josiah Slick and E. L. Smith in their day and generation were great men and endured physical suffering owing to the immense field covered by them. The storms of winter, hot blasts of summer, the wind and sand storms then prevalent, many times going from forty-eight to seventy-two hours without sleep,


very little to eat and drink, picking their way over the trackless prairie, for there were no roads, oftentimes lost for hours, exposed to all kinds of infections and contagions, very little to work with, entire families frequently living in sod houses with but one room, often as many as seven persons occupying this; difference what the sickness or injury, these doctors had to and did meet the conditions and did noble work for humanity. All honor and praise be to each and all of these pioneer doctors.


    The records in the office of the county clerk disclose the registration of thirty-four dentists from 1887 to date (1916). Of this number seven are engaged in active practice in Kearney. These dentists are especially well qualified and equipped with up-to-date methods and instruments.


    The Hospital Benefit Association at Kearney was incorporated 0ctober 24, 1902, the incorporators being A. J. Galentine, W. S. Clapp, H. A. Webbert, J. A. Boyd, J. S. Adair, F. F. Roby.
    On March 9, 1912, through the efforts of Bishop Beecher, the hospital was taken over by the Episcopal Diocese, under the name of St. Luke's Hospital, the incorporators being Bishop G. A. Beecher, F. J. Everson, E. C. Calkins. Somce which time it has been in active operation, is fully modern in all its departments and is entitled to all the patronage tributary to it.
    The W. C. T. U. or "Mother Hull" Hospital at Kearney was incorporated April 5, 1880, with Mrs. Nancy Hull as president. The board of trustees: Mrs. Mary C. Barnd, Mrs. Helen H. Dryden, Mrs. Nancy Hull. Mrs. L. M. Parish, secretary.
    This institution was doing good work long before the date of incorporation under the name of the W. C. T. U. The good it has done can not be measured in dollars and cents. It was an institution that admitted any and all, with or without price, and were given every care at the command of those in authority. Their spiritual illness was looked after as well as their physical. It is supported by charity or donations, and by what money the inmates are able to pay.
    The names of this band of noble women will be remembered as long as the history of Nebraska endures, for their work Was of and for love of humanity


    Recognizing the great services to humanity by members of the medical profession, an attempt was made to have prepared for this history a history of the medical profession in Buffalo County, but the brief period of time at disposal in the gathering, compiling and preparing of copy, and the further fact that those who could best prepare such a history are men busy in the practice of the profession, has not made this feature of the county history as complete as is to be desired.


    For the following brief history of those who have practiced the profession of medicine in the City of Kearney the editor is largely indebted to the kindness and courtesy of Mrs. C. V. D. Basten.
    The editor could learn of no official records to refer to, hence it is possible the names of practicing physicians have been omitted; if so, it has not been intentional. To the editor of this history it has been a source of great pleasure to record herein the name of every person, in so far as possible, who has rendered valuable service to the general public.
    "Are you a doctor ?" was the anxious question asked Mr. Frantz by a young woman, wife of the proprietor of the Commercial Hotel at Kearney. This was on the morning of February 13, 1873. Mr. Frantz had come with his family to start a drug store and the young woman was in dire need of a physician. This seems to establish the fact that the first doctor was E. S. Perkins, M. D., whose sojourn in the little pioneer town was short and inconspicuous. The recollections of him were that he had suffered a blight, and wore a crape sleeve band for a lost sweetheart. A mother used to write anxious letters to Rev. Nahum Gould and ask him to have a care for her boy. (In the first issue of the Kearney Junction Times, October 12, 1872, mention is made that Kearney has four doctors, only one of whom is named, Dr. E. S. Perkins.)
    Dr. Noble Holton came to Kearney during the summer of 1873 and practiced his profession until 1877. His office was in the drugstore of Holton and Barlow. Mr. Barlow was Doctor Holton's brother-in-law. Both ladies were sisters of Curtis A. Greenman. All of them came originally from Tiskilwa, III. Mrs. Holton was also a medical practitioner. Both families, Holton and Barlow, moved to Peoria, Ill., in 1877. Mrs. Holton died in 1887. Doctor Holton died in a soldiers' home in Illinois in 1901.
    Dr. J. T. Brown came to Kearney in the summer of 1873. He was born in Berkshire County, Mass. Practiced his profession for seventeen years near Rochester, N. Y. He served as regimental surgeon of the Ninety-fourth New York Volunteer Infantry two years; served as staff surgeon to General Barnes two years; and practiced in Belvidere, Quincy and Galesburg, III., for six years. In the spring of 1874 Doctor Brown's horse ran away, throwing him under a culvert, where he lay unconscious for a long time. The weather was severely cold and his health was greatly impaired by his cruel experience. He continued to practice until 1886, when he moved to Belvidere, Ill. His daughter Minnie married James Harron of the firm of Roberts and Harron, who came to Kearney from St. Joseph, Mo.
    An incident is recalled in which Doctor Brown was called to attend a patient living in the country twenty miles from Kearney. When Doctor Brown arrived he found the father of the family had died. Doctor Brown remained to comfort the family, read from the Bible and offered prayer, and did not leave until arrangements had been made for the funeral. Doctor Brown was a charter member of the Presbyterian Church, organized at Kearney in 1873, and chosen one of its elders. He was a lovable man, one of God's noblemen, of sainted memory to many of the early settlers of Buffalo County.
    Charles T. Dildine, best known of the early_physicians, was born at Dansville, N. Y., in 1849. He graduated from Buffalo Medical College in 1872. He married


Miss Flora Evers and after practicing at Almond and Dansville, N. Y, came to Kearney, April 1, 1874. He commanded a large practice and was successful and greatly respected. He died at the early age of thirty-seven years July 13, 1886, and is buried at Danville, N. Y.
    Dr. John C. Hull was born in Mount Vernon, Ohio, in 1827. Graduated from Eclectic Medical Institute, Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1853. He married Miss Nancy Updegraff in 1855. He practiced for nineteen years in Henry County, Ohio, and came to Kearney in 1875, where he practiced until his death, November 14, 1900. His widow, of blessed memory, lived until March 16, 1911.
    Dr. Henry Baker, active and prominent in the medical profession at Kearney for about ten years dating from 1876, was born in Northamptonshire, England, and was a graduate of the American Medical College of St. Louis, Mo.
    Dr. Carl A. Jackson was born in Sweden and graduated from Carolmska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. He practiced in Sweden, Chicago, and in towns in Nebraska, for eighteen years before coming to Kearney in 1878.
    Dr. Maurice A. Hoover was born in Marion County, Ind. A graduate of the Medical College of Indiana. Practiced in Mount Jackson and Indianapolis Ind., before coming to Kearney in April 1883, since which time he has been extensively engaged in the practice of his profession. In addition to his professional duties, Doctor Hoover has interested himself in the various activities of city life, serving many years as a member of the board of education.
    Dr. Cornelius Van Dyke Basten was born of Dutch-Revolutionary ancestry at Kingston, N. Y., May 25, 1859. Graduate of Kingston Academy. Studied medicine for three years in Philadelphia, and graduated from University in Iowa Medical College, Iowa City, in 1883. Settled in Kearney, April 31, 1883. Married Miss Adah Seamen November 24, 1885. Has practiced continuously since at Kearney, taking post-graduate work in New York, Chicago, Omaha, Kansas City and New Orleans.
    Dr. George M, Hull, youngest son of Dr. John C. Hull, was born in Trenton, Iowa, in 1863. Graduated from Omaha Medical College in 1885. Settled in Kearney and began the practice of his profession in 1885. Married Miss Blanche Harrington, of Geneseo, Ill., in 1887. His death occurred in 1907.
    Dr. George W. Kern, graduate of Hahnemann Medical College of Philadelphia, Pa., in 1878. Practiced in Newton, Elizabeth and McKeesport, Pa. and came to Kearney in 1886. Removed to McKeesport, where he now (1915) resides.
    Dr. James Porter was born in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, in 1847. He graduated from the medical department of the University of Michigan. Began the practice of medicine at Trenton, Iowa. December 13, 1876, was married to Martha A. Wilson. Settled in Kearney in 1887, where he practiced his profession until his death, which occurred February 14, 1897.
    Dr. John James Cameron, born at Montreal, Canada. Graduated from McGill University, Montreal, in 1887. Practiced one year in Ontario and settled in Kearney December 29, 1888.
    Dr. Frank E. Duckworth was born in Chariton County, Iowa, and graduated from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Chicago. Came to Kearney in


February, 1888. He was a partner for some time of Dr. M. A. Hoover. Is not living.
    Dr. Benjamin Franklin Jones was born in Ohio. A graduate of Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, Pa. Settled in Kearney in 1888. Was a partner for some years of Dr. L. P. Woodworth.
    Dr. Henry Slaughter Bell was born in Kentucky. Graduated from Bellevue Hospital Medical College, N. Y., in 1878. He practiced in Knox County, Ind., and at Paris, Ill., and in the year 1889 located at Kearney.
    Dr. John L. Bennett was born at Howell, Mich. Graduate of Eclectic Medical Institute of Cincinnati in 1874. Practiced his profession in Iowa and settled in Kearney July 15, 1890.
    Dr. Charles K. Gibbons was born in Kearney, December 13, 1876. He graduated from the Shattuck Military Academy, Fairbault, Minn., and entered Northwestern Medical College, Chicago, from which he graduated in 1902. He began his medical practice at Los Angeles, Cal., but removed to Kearney to engage in the practice of his profession in 1903, He married Miss Nellie J. Downing June 25, 1902.
    Dr. F. L. Blanchard was born in Peacham, Vt., in 1857. He graduated from Ann Arbor Medical College, Mich., and served as acting dean of the medical college after the death of President Palmer. He practiced his profession both at Albion and Jackson, Mich., coming to Kearney in 1902. His death occurred March 27, 1915.
    Dr. Judd Albertus Strong was born in Columbia City, Ind., in 1868. Graduated in 1892 from Fort Wayne Medical College. Practiced in Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska and Colorado, and settled in Kearney in January, 1912.
    Among others who have practiced the profession of medicine in the city the following are called to mind, but the editor of this history is not further advised as to their life or services: Drs. Eliza B. Mills, George M. Mills, F. S. Packard, L. P. Woodworth, A. D. Cameron.


    Attorneys at law admitted to practice in our courts are termed "officers of our courts" and an effort was made to have prepared for this volume a "History of the Buffalo County Bar," but the brief time available in preparing the copy has not given opportunity to compile the desired history. From various sources and partly from memory the following list of attorneys at law has been compiled and if it is found names have been omitted it is not intentional, but because memory in matters historical is treacherous, can not fully be depended upon. Members of the Buffalo County bar have rendered valuable service to the state and have gained state-wide distinction. Herewith, partly from memory, a brief mention is made of services thus rendered in the county and state.
    Henry C. Andrews served as member of the Legislature in 1887 and also as member of the board of county commissioners.
    D. P. Ashburn served as member of the Legislature in 1873 and also as a member of the county board of supervisors.
    Norris Brown served as county attorney, deputy attorney-general, attorney-general and United States senator.


    E. Frank Brown served as county judge in 1898-99.
    John Brand served as county judge in 1880-83.
    E. C. Calkins served as state senator in 1877, as regent of the state university and as a member of the Supreme Court commission.
    Thomas N. Cornett as county judge in 1890-93.
    A. H. Connor as member of the constitutional convention in 1875, as state senator in 1883 and also in 1889.
    J. M. Easterling served as member of the Legislature in 1889, as county judge in 1894-97 and as county attorney in 1906-10.
    F. J. Everitt served as county judge in 1915-16.
    George E. Evans served as county attorney in 1886-90.
    J. E. Gillispie served as county judge, 1888-89.
    W. L. Green served as judge of the District Court in 1896 and later as a member of Congress.
    William Gaslin served several terms as judge of the District Court and was one of the most widely known judges in the state.
    B. O. Hostetler served as judge of the District Court from 1904 to 1916.
    F. M. Hallowell served as county judge, 1902-05, 1908-13, 1914
    Frank W. Hull served as county judge, 1884-87.
    F. G. Hamer served as judge of the District Court, 1883-1890, also as justice of the Supreme Court, commencing 1912.
    Thomas F. Hamer served as member of the State Legislature, 1907.
    John T. Mallalieu served as regent of the university and as superintendent of schools, 1880-84, also as superintendent of the State Industrial School for a term of years.
    Ira P. Marston served as county judge, 1906-07; as county attorney, 1890-92.
    N. P. McDonald served as county superintendent, 1890-94, and as county attorney, 1900-1904.
    J. E. Morrison served, by appointment, as county judge in 1913.
    Edw. B. McDermott served as county attorney, 1910-14.
    Fred A. Nye served as county attorney, 1896-1900.
    W. D. .Oldham served as deputy attorney-general and as a member of the Supreme Court commissioners.
    H. M. Sinclair served as district attorney in 1884, and as district judge in 1896.
    Sam L. Savidge served as district judge in 1883.
    S. W. Switzer served as a member of the Legislature in 1877.
    E. E. Squires served as county attorney, 1904-06.
    A. B. Tollefsen serving as county attorney in 1915-16.
    J. J. Whittier served as county judge, 1876-79.
    D. Westervelt served as county judge, 1874-75.
    Charles E. Yost served as county judge, 1900-01.


Andrews, H. C.
Ashburn, D. P.
Brown, Norris
Brown, Frank E.
Beeman, Frank E.
Barnd, John
Burnett, E. P.
Boltin, A. H.
Byrd, Frank J.


Barney, C. E.
Calkins, E. C.
Calkins, H. V.
Carr, T. B.
Cornett, T. H.
Collard, C. A.
Conner, A. H.
Chapman, J. W.
Cunningham, E. E.
Dorsey, D. A.
Dryden, John N.
Decker, John E.
Devisek, Frank O.
Easterling, J. M.
Everitt, F. J.
Evans, Geo. E.
East, B. F.
Foristall, J. M.
Green, W. L.
Green, Omer L.
Glanville, R. C.
Gaslin, Wm.
Groff, Lewis A.
Gillispie, J. E.
Hull, Frank W.
Hoge, John
Huston, F. L.
Hostetler, B. O.
Hallowell, F. M.
Hand, W. L.
Hamer, F. G.
Hamer, T. F.
Hartman, J. P.
Hemiup, N. H.
Moore, R. A.
Main, Lewis P.
Mallalieu, John T.
Murphy, John S.
Marston, Ira P.
Marston, Maud
Miller, John A.
Matson, Chas. E.
Mellett, J. E.
McDonald, N. P.
Morrison, J. E.
McDermott, Edw. B.
Niles, Henry D.
Nevius, S. M.
Nye, Fred A.
Newcom, Gid. E.
Newcom, A.
Oldham, W. D.
Parsons, C. B.
Pratt, Warren
Robinson, C. A.
Riley, Wm.
Roe, John H.
Smith, James A.
Sinclair, H. M.
Savidge, Sam. L.
Shipman, J. E.
Switzer, S. W.
Saylor, J. E. C.
Smith, J. T.
Squires, E. E.
Sterling, R. H.
Sydenham, H. H.
Thompson, Stanley
Tollefsen, A. B.
Whittier, J. J.
Wenzell, Dea
Woodworth, H. L.
Walker, Jasper
Woodruff, J. J.
Westervelt, D.
Yost, Charles F.


    Rev. Asbury Collins and his family came to Buffalo County May 11, 1871, and established in the immediate vicinity of Kearney Junction their future home. On their homestead claim, 12-8-16, now within the corporate limits of the City of Kearney, they built a house which from the first became a center of social, religious, and educational activity. In the early days this home was known locally as Hotel Collins, for in the organization of school district No. 7 (Kearney) the county superintendent concludes his official notice of the first meeting to organize this district as follows: "Sent notice of due form and import to A. Collins directing first meeting to be held at hotel of A. Collins in said district on the 23d day of March, A. D., 1872, at 2:00 P. M. --C. Putnam, superintendent."
    At this first meeting to organize the district, Mr. Collins was elected one of the school district officers, and the records show that Mr. Collins was serving as director of this district July 1 1874.


    It was at this home in October, 1871, that the first church was organized in Buffalo County. Rev. A. G. White was presiding elder of the Omaha District


of the Methodist Episcopal Church, the conference then embracing the entire State of Nebraska. On the evening of Elder White's arrival he preached at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Collins and at the close of the services the first Methodist Church was organized with the following as charter members: Asbury Collins, Louisa E. Collins, H. E. A. Sydenham, Alfred Gay and Hannah Jay. Rev. A. Collins was appointed pastor of the newly organized church. The board of trustees was appointed December 31, 1871, composed of Mrs. H. E. A. Sydenham, Alfred Gay and others. At the home of Mrs. Collins was organized the first Sabbath school in Kearney in February, 1872. Of this Sunday school Mrs. Collins says: "Every lady, excepting one, within ten miles of my home was a member of my Bible class." In 1872, Rev. Nahum Gould, a Presbyterian missionary, preached each alternate Sabbath in the parlor of Mrs. Collins' home. In 1875, at the home of Mrs. Collins, "was organized the first W. C. T. U. Society in the county. The charter members were Mrs. Louisa E. Collins, Mrs. D. A. Dorsey, Miss Kate Dorsey, Mrs. C. W. Dake, Mrs. H. E. A. Sydenham and Mrs. Lena Hull. Honorary members were Asbury Collins, Moses Sydenham and Hiram Hull. The officers elect of the society were: President, Mrs. Louisa E. Collins; secretary, Mrs. C. W. Dake. At a meeting held in Lincoln in 1875 Mrs. Collins was elected first vice president of the Nebraska W. C. T. U. When at later dates the distinguished and talented Miss. Francis E. Willard, president of the World's W. C. T. U., whose motto is "God and Home and Native Land," came to Kearney to speak in the cause of temperance, Mrs. Collins presided on both of these occasions, at each of which the largest audience room in the city was crowded to its utmost capacity, some of those in attendance driving twenty miles and home again the same night and feeling abundantly compensated in the privilege to see and hear the most talented and distinguished woman in the nineteenth century.
    When the Woman's Home Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Buffalo County was organized Mrs. Collins was elected president. In 1888 Mrs. Collins was elected president of the Woman's Home Missionary Society of the West Nebraska conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church and in 1890 was chosen organizer for this society for the West Nebraska Conference. It is not possible to mention, even in a brief manner, the many and varied efforts which Mrs. Collins has put forth in the past thirty-nine years in the best interests of the City of Kearney and its inhabitants, but it can be said that in all these years she has given freely, willingly, unselfishly of her time, talents and means toward the advancement of the social, religious and educational welfare of the city.
    In 1875 the heavy hand of sorrow and affliction was laid on the family of Mr. and Mrs. Collins, the occasion being the unprovoked, cold blooded murder on September 11th of their son, Milton M. Collins, aged twenty-four years and married, by Jordan P. Smith, a drunken cowboy, the "boss" of a cattle herding outfit, who having delivered a large herd of Texas cattle to the Sioux Indians in South Dakota, was with his herd outfit returning to their homes in Texas. Again in 1882, May 13th, the hand of sore affliction came with sudden and crushing force to this worthy and much loved family in the death of their son, D. F. Collins, aged twenty-four years, a graduate of the law department of Iowa


University, who while hunting with Professor Brown of the Kearney High School near Stephenson siding west of Kearney, was killed by the accidental discharge of a gun while sitting in the buggy. Professor Brown had left the buggy to hunt and a neighbor getting into the buggy caused the gun to be discharged, killing young Collins.
    On March 9, 1890, occurred the death of Rev. Asbury Collins, who having regained his health after his removal from Iowa to Nebraska, again took up the work of the ministry in the Methodist Episcopal Church in the year 1871 and continued in this work until his death. Mr. Collins was buried in the cemetery at Kearney beside his two sons.
    These great and sudden afflictions, sufficient to crush all life and ambition of an ordinary individual, seemed in the case of Mrs. Collins to cause her to be more solicitous for the welfare of her friends and neighbors and in 1910 we find her still the center and inspiration of a large circle of loving and loyal friends in her own home city. At the annual meeting of the Woman's Home Missionary Society of West Nebraska conference, held in September, 1909, Mrs. Collins gave up the active management of the work of that society and was made president emetrius [sic], a very honorable title.
    On September 23, 1872, Mrs. Collins was presented with a deed of the first lot disposed of in the original Town of Kearney Junction, the records in the register of deeds' office showing that the first lot entered of record as disclosed by deed index in this city (Kearney Junction) was executed September 23, 1872, by J. W. Brooks et al. (representing the townsite company) to Louisa E. Collins.


    Rev. William Morse, a Methodist minister, came from Ripon, Wis., to Buffalo County, Neb., in March, 1872, and took a homestead claim on section 24 township 9, range 16, and arranging to have a house built thereon returned to Wisconsin for his family. "Father" Morse, as he was lovingly called by all who knew him, returned to Buffalo County with his family in June, 1872. On his arrival "Father" Morse at once took up the work of the ministry and the upbuilding of the Methodist Church at Kearney and in Buffalo County; James Jenkins (a son-in-law of Reverend Mr. Morse) relates that on June 28, 1872, religious services were held at the home of "Father" Morse and of members of the church in attendance gives the names of the following: Rev. and Mrs. Wm. Morse, Mr. and Mrs. Asbury Collins, Mr. and Mrs. Charles A. Smith, Miss Mary Smith, Joseph Fish, Mrs. Cuddebeck, Mrs. (Hannah) Jay, Mr. and Mrs. J. R. King, Mr. and Mrs. James Jenkins. Mr. Jenkins further relates that the first Methodist Episcopal Church services held in what is now the City of Kearney with Rev. Wm. Morse as pastor, was held in the Kearney Junction Times Building located on Smith Avenue, now Twenty-fourth Street. The coming of Rev. Wm. Morse greatly strengthened the cause of Methodism (the Methodist Church) and he may not inappropriately be called the "Father" of the Methodist Church in Buffalo County.
    The beginning of the organization of the Methodist Church at Gibbon and in the eastern portion of Buffalo County may be said to have had its inspiration in the coming of "Father" Morse in the summer of 1872.


    In the Buffalo County Beacon, published at Gibbon, under date of July 27, 1872, appears the following: "The schoolhouse was well filled last Sabbath, July 2ist, by an appreciative audience who listened to a sermon by Rev. Wm. Morse, Methodist Episcopal preacher on this charge. Brother Morse is recently from Ripon, Wis., and will preach at Gibbon every other Sabbath at the schoolhouse."
    Also in the same issue of the Beacon appears the following:
    "Rev. Wm. Morse, formerly of Ripon, Wis., and now of our county, in company with Judge (Rev.) Collins and others, took a hunt a few days since south of the Platte and succeeded in "bagging" four buffalo. The party could have killed almost any number but four beeves were all they required."

Mrs. E. R. Holmes (K. O.)

    Nancy Updegraff was born April 22, 1834, near Shelbyville, Ind. She married Dr. John C. Hull in 1855. In 1872 the family removed to Colorado Springs, Colo., and after remaining there one year they came to Kearney and spent the remainder of their lives.
    Their children were Chas. M., once mayor of Kearney, Frank W., Howard J. ("Tom") and Dr. Geo. M.  The eldest and the youngest died in Kearney.
    In 1872 Mr. and Mrs. Asbury Collins and Mr. and Mrs. Moses H. Sydenham met at the home of Mr. Collins and organized a W. C. T. U. and Mrs. Hull soon became a member and for thirty-nine years her devotion to the temperance cause knew no bounds. Naturally in fighting intemperance and trying to mitigate its consequences she was brought into intimate knowledge of much poverty which she was always striving to relieve. As a solicitor for contributions she certainly was unexcelled. In her sweet motherly way she would present an appeal so pathetic that no one thought of refusing. Long years ago it was well understood that her home was a home for the homeless, a refuge for the unfortunate and a haven for the unemployed and she was seldom without one or more of these extras in her home. If one wanted a domestic or a maid wished a place turned to her as naturally as a sunflower turns to the sun. Her beautiful altruistic life was so entirely given to others that she reserved none for herself.
    November 9, 1893, a hospital was opened on First Avenue, Kearney, and in honor of its devoted patroness it was named, Mother Hull Hospital, As nearly as practicable with limited means this institution to this day exemplifies the principles of its founder in practical benevolence.. The firemen and Mother Hull were always in close touch and their annual contribution to the hospital from the proceeds of their ball was handed over cheerfully.
    Mother Hull passed from earth March 16, 1911, very suddenly. Her memory lives with the older citizens of Kearney as a blessed example of practical religion.

By Miss Lena Briggs--Student State Normal School

    Just back of the lake, northwest of Kearney, lies a piece of ground, picturesque in its rough, uneven surface.


The lower part of this ground is covered by a portion of the lake and slopes to the top of the hill. On this side-hill are a few evidences that a house had ever there. There are trees, shrubbery, a cedar tree, a place badly caved in, and just at the top of the hill a few bricks in the grass. Standing on this hill one looks down on the lake (Kearney), beyond to the power house, normal school buildings, City of Kearney, the Platte River and the view is lost in the prosperous farms with their fields of wheat, alfalfa and corn.
    In 1871 Rev. Nahum Gould arrived in Kearney, sent as a missionary by the synodical board of the Presbyterian Church. There was no depot or postoffice. The railroad station was at "Fort Kearney Station," now Buda. There was (where Kearney now is) a grocery store (F. N. Dart) on Twenty-fourth Street, where the Catholic Church now stands, a blacksmith shop (John Mahon) on the south side of the Union Pacific tracks and one large house in the center of section No. 2 occupied by a Methodist minister--Rev. Asbury Collins--and his family. Rev. Nahum Gould purchased (homesteaded) the piece of ground, eighty acres, north and west of Kearney and including the ground described at the beginning.
   . Mr. Gould's family came in 1872. This year the Town of Kearney began and grew rapidly and the buffalo grass that covered all the landscape began to be dotted with houses. Mr. Gould selected the side-hill as the location of his house and barns, either as a sheltered spot from winds or to be less conspicuous to the straggling bands of Indians. He excavated into the bank to get a level space large enough to put up a house. The house was three stories, and one could walk out onto the ground from the third story on the west, from the second on the north and from the first on the east and south.
    There were two rooms, dining and kitchen, on the first floor. The second floor had three rooms, the ground being excavated out of the side-hill for the third room. The third story had three rooms.
    R. D. Gould, the son, started to dig a small cave near the kitchen door for the convenience of the women. He found the ground so well adapted to the construction of a cave that it grew until there was an excavation 4 by 6 feet and 40 foot long extending into the side-hill. Along each side of the cave were rooms 4 by 6 feet and extending the entire length. In these rooms were stored vegetables, grain, fuel, harness and stores of all kinds. At present (1913) the font has caved in, but by digging the cave could be found.
    The stables were located south of the house and above both house and stables, almost at the brow of the hill, the family graves were placed. A vault was built of brick and in it were buried two children, and afterward Rev. Nahum Gould himself.
    Mr. Gould began his religious work soon after coming. At first Presbyterian services alternated with the Methodist in the dining room of the Junction house, the home of Rev. Asbury Collins. In 1872, when houses were springing up in the town, services were held in empty houses.
    Often a service was announced to take place the next Sunday on a lot on which there was not a stick of timber. The next Sunday a house, all enclosed, with boards across nail kegs for pews, was ready for services. A necessary part of these services was the first organ in Kearney, brought here by Mr. Gould.

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