Martin I, youngest child of Arlineus and Mary Marther Brower, settled in Fullerton in 1882 two years after his initial trip to Nance county to purchase Pawnee lands. He lived with his sister Annie M. and her husband Joseph Wright McClelland until his marriage in 1885 to Ella Lucretia Clark in Owego, New York. She was a telegrapher for the Erie Railroad in Union and Western Union in Owego and the youngest of ten children of Ezeckial Hyde and Nancy Williams Clark. Martin and Ella had three children: Mary Letitia (1886), Julian Martin (1887) and Robert Clark (1896), all born in Fullerton.
Martin was born in 1847 in Brower's Corner, Ashtabula county, Ohio; grew to manhood in Pontiac, Illinois; was graduated from Lombard College, Galesburg, Illinois in 1871 after which he "read Law" with Judge Payson of Ottawa, Illinois. He was appointed Master of Chancery in Illinois and was admitted to the practice of law in the Nance County Bar in 1884. In Fullerton he had a law practice and was an abstractor but his main interest and source of income was that of a loan agent for New York and Illinois friends at 2 1/2% commission.
He was elected to one term as Nance county judge for the Populist party. Although the top votegetter on the Prohibitionist party's slate of candidates, he twice was defeated as the party's candidate for Nebraska Attorney General in 1880 and 1892.
In 1900 the Fullerton National Bank was organized with Martin Brower installed as its president, mainly because of his large clientele of private loan customers. Eventually acquiring majority control of the Bank, he continued as president until his death in 1920, when his son Julian succeeded as president and son Robert, vice president of the Fullerton National.
Also living with the Browers were Ella's two maiden sisters, Frances and Lucy Clark. They did the housekeeping and cooking, enabling Ella to devote her time to the causes of the WCTU and the Prohibitionist party. Frances and Luch died in and 1934 while Ella lived until 1942.
Robert Clark Brower was born in 1896 in the family home in Fullerton, the youngest of the three children of Martin I. and Ella Clark Brower. He was graduated from Fullerton High School in 1914, attended the University of Nebraska and was graduated from the University of Michigan in 1919 with a law degree. After being admitted to the Nebraska Bar, he joined the law firm of Noffsinger and Walchle in Kalispell, Montana. Here he met a dental hygienist and Denver University graduate, Lenore Sussanah Heyrock, who was born in Cavalier, North Dakota in 1899, the daughter of John K, and Sussanah Schluchter Heyrock. Robert and Lenore married in 1923 in Billings, Montana,
later becoming the parents of three children: John Martin (1924), Helen Jane (1925) and Thomas Dale (1928).
Robert returned to Fullerton a year prior to his marriage to become the partner of J. H. Kemp in the law firm of Kemp and Brower, an association that continued for 28 years. Also in 1922, Robert was elected vice president of the Fullerton National Bank, a position he held until the bank was sold by the Brower family in 1956.
In 1951 with his son John, Robert founded the law firm of Brower and Brower (known today as Brower, Treadway, and Bird).
Robert was appointed to a two year term in the Nebraska legislature in 1953 and was re-elected in 1955. In 1960 he was appointed to the Nebraska Supreme Court in Lincoln by Governor Frank Morrison, and served in this position until reaching the mandatory retirement age of 70 in 1967. Judge and Mrs. Brower made their home in Lincoln for two more years before retiring to the milder climate of Sun City, Arizona.
He served the city of Fullerton as city attorney for twenty-five years and the county as county attorney one term. He was a charter member of the Lions Club.
Robert's sister, Mary Letitia Brower, was a career teacher and taught in Fullerton and Bloomington. After obtaining her Master's at UN-L in 1917 she taught history in Hastings High School until retirement at the age of 65. She died in 1968.
John Martin Brower, attorney and lifelong resident of Fullerton, was born in 1924 in Grand Island, son of Robert C. and Lenore H. Brower. After graduation from Fullerton High School and a semester at Doane College, he served three years as a Navy radioman in World War II from 1942-45. He then attended the University of Nebraska, receiving his law degree in 1951.
In 1949 John and Margaurite Emily Leonard were married in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Born in 1926 in Boise, Idaho, the daughter of W. V. and Dorothy Leonard, she was a graduate of the University of Colorado and a registered nurse at the Lincoln Veterans' Hospital in Lincoln at the time of the marriage.
The couple moved permanently in 1951 to Fullerton where John joined his father in the law firm of Brower & Brower, serving sixteen years as city attorney and twelve as school board member. The law firm has expanded in recent years to St. Edward and Albion with the addition of partners D. T. Treadway in 1962 and Larry Bird in 1972.
Born to this couple were four children, the fifth generation of Browers to reside in Nance County: Sam Robert (1951), 4th generation attorney, and partner in the Omaha firm of Swarr, May, Smith and Anderson and married to Deborah Coe in 1979; Carol Ann (1953), a nurse clincial (sic) specialist with the San Diego Veterans' Hospital; Janet Lenore (1955), a health environmentalist with
the Boulder, Colorado health department; all graduates of University of Nebraska and Joseph Paul (1962) in high school.
Siblings of Robert Brower are Helen Jane who married Lincoln architect and UN-L professor James G. Porter, and has five children Marsha, Linda, Julia, Clark and Stacia: and Thomas Dale, Scottsbluff attorney who married Jean Wooden of Winnetka, Illinois and are parents of Beth, Mike and Mark.
Hans Frenzen was born in Schlieswig-Holstein, Germany, on September 3, 1853. He came to America in 1879 at the age of 26 years. He was married in 1880 in Manilla, Iowa to Celia Grage. They came to Nebraska and settled on a farm north of Central City, Nebraska, where they lived for 13 years. Then Mr. Frenzen brought his family to Nance County, Nebraska in 1901. They settled on a farm 5 1/2 miles northwest of Fullerton, Nebraska onto a beautiful farm nestled under the Bluffs to the west of it, and with the lazy Cedar River winding on its way along the east side. There were 497 acres of land in this farm with part of it in pasture and the rest in good rich farm land. It was irrigated out of the Cedar river.
To this union were born eight children: Louis, Henry, Frank, Edward, Anna, Emma, Lavida and Arthur. Mrs. Hans Frenzen died in 1906. She was born March 4, 1862 and died on February 25, 1906. Mr. Frenzen had two sisters: Mrs. Henry Kuhl, Hamburg, Germany, Mrs. Bonnie Jensen, Iowa. Mrs. Kuhl had two daughters, Emma Huhl Hahn, Hamburg Germany; Minnie Kuhl Hamburg, Germany. Mrs. Frenzen died at the age of 44 years, but the father with the help of the children kept the family together - put them all thru school except Anna who had to take care of the home, and did the best he could until he passed away on January 17, 1932. Louis died in early childhood. Henry was born in 1882 and died in 1927 in Grand Island, Nebraska. Frank Frenzen was born on August 14, 1886 and died on May 21, 1970 at his home in Fullerton. Edward Frenzen was born on November 27,1889 and died on May 20, 1964 at his farm home at Fullerton. Anna Matthieson was born on April 6, 1893 and died on August 25, 1969 at her home in Grand Island, Nebraska. Emma Hadfield was born on February 4, 1896. Lavida Mason was born on July 25,1899. Arthur was born on July 4, 1902.
After the death of the father Edward stayed on at the farm and farmed it in partnership with Robert Mason (Lavida's husband.) But at Edward's death in 1964, the estate had to be settled, and so the family home of 63 years, The Frenzen Farm was sold. The Survivors of the orignial (sic) family are Emma Hadfield, and Lavida Mason both of Fullerton, and Arthur of Lincoln, Nebraska.
Robert (Red) and Lavida Mason had four children: Robert William - who died at the age of 5 years December 19, 1931 to June 5,1936. Twin sons Larry Edward Mason born February 17, 1938. Wife Joyce Stetz born October 4,1943 and child Shelly Marie born October 15, 1965. Garry Edwin Mason born February 17, 1938, wife Mary Lou Mason born June 15, 1937, child Kelly Suzanne born September 3, 1958 who is married to Dennis Michael Zarek born October 6, 1951.
Donna Rose Mason born September 10, 1925. Donna was married to Nelson Crull Weller born, September 13, 1923. Their children are Jack Ray Weller born December 16, 1947, married to Cindy Nesbitt, born August 22, 1950. Their child is Scott Allen Weller born September 15,1969.
Randy Lee Weller July 5, 1949, wife Lisa Marie Vulpetti March 18, 1949. Child Pia Marie Weller, born March 18,1975.
Teri Linn Garcia January 28, 1954, husband Frank Garcia June 11, 1947, children Stephani Shawn July 31, 1976, Christopher Michael December 23, 1978.
Shawn Rene Weller born April 9,1957.
Larry Edward Mason and Garry Edwin Mason and their families are living at Fullerton. Donna Rose Weller is living at Genoa Nebraska. Jack Weller and family are living in Longmont Colorado, Randy Weller and family live in Baltimore, Maryland. Teri Linn Garcia and family live in Clarksville, Tennessee. Shawn Rene Weller is a Senior Airman stationed in South Carolina.
Swen Peter Swenson, (changed to Swanson), was born in Sweden on December 7, 1843, and died December 11, 1911, in Nance county, Nebraska. He was about three years old when he came to the United States with his parents. They lived near Knoxville, Illinois. In 1862, he joined the North Army in the Civil War. He was mustered out in 1865, at Nashville, Indiana. Following the war, he married Ellen Olson on March 16, 1867. She was born on November 7, 1843, in the Province of Shone, Sweden and died in Nance county on May 6, 1904. She came to the United States in 1866.
The couple lived near Knoxville, Illinois, until 1871, when they moved to Iowa. In 1891, they came by covered wagon to the North Star area in Nebraska where they established a farm home. They were the parents of eleven children.
Fred, who married Martha Thomason. They had one daughter, Irene.
Albert, who married Ella Kennedy. They had ten children: Ruby (Mrs. A. J. Larson), Bernice (Mrs Grant Olson), Ina (Mrs. Gerald Malander), Floyd, Gladys (Mrs. Gordon McNary), Ailene (Mrs. D. E. Bright), Alberta (Mrs. Donald Arrasmith), Alan, Max, and Wayne.
George, who married Amelia Nelson. They had two children: Virgil and Lois.
Charles, who married Bertha Kemp. They had three children: Eldo, Carl and Vera.
Edwin died in 1899.
Stella, who married Gus Erickson. Three children were born, Hazel, Helen and Frances.
Anthony, married Mayble Lader. They had three children: Vivian, Lucille and Evelyn.
Esther married F. L. Rumsey. They had two children: Dayle and Thayne.
Milton who married Minnie Lohr. They had two children: Milford and Robert.
Joseph who is not married.
Rueben who married Nellie Anderson. They had two children: Mildred and Ruth. His second marriage was to Lela Allington, in which two children were born: Donald and Leland.
The Swen Swanson family and some of their descendants lived in the North Star area from 1891 until 1973. Albert, George, Milton, Rueben and sister Esther Rumsey lived on farms near the North Star church and store. Fred and Joseph operated the North Star store from 1914 until 1941.
Frank Leslie Rumsey was born in Ohio August 14, 1843. His boyhood was spent in Ohio, Minnesota and Union County Iowa.
In August 1862 he enlisted as a Soldier in the Civil War, he served for three years in Co "H" 29th Iowa regiment.
After the war he resided in Iowa and Kansas until 1877, when he moved back to Iowa Garfield Township, where he resided for 30 years, except for a short time in Red Oak, Iowa.
He was married May 4, 1869 to Sophia Hinton near Albie, Iowa. They moved to Kansas in 1870, returning to Monroe county, Iowa in 1876, then in 1877 to the present home in Garfield Township.
His first wife passed away and in 1903 he married Lille V. Manning. He was successful in farming and stock raising and was an extensive land owner
Six children, five sons and one daughter were born to Frank and his first wife Sophia. They are in order of age as follows:
Edward and wife Lillie, residing in Wheatland, Wyoming at the time of his death, they raised four children, Harold, Hazel, Pearl and Frank.
Fred and wife Bertha, residing in Elliott, Iowa at the time of his death, they raised three children, Edith, Doris and Opal.
Samuel and wife Nell, residing in Los Angeles, California at the time of his death, they had no children.
Elva and husband Lou Crum, residing in Hawthorne, California at the time of her death, they raised four children, Evelyn, Frank, Bernice and Marcella
Frank (Les) and wife Esther, residing in Fullerton, Nebraska at the time of his death, they raised two children Dayle and Thayne.
Charles R. and wife Bonnie, residing in Long Beach, California at the time of his death, they raised three children, William, Ruth and Maxine.
Dayle and wife Rosa, live in Fullerton, Nebraska at this writing. They have one daughter, Dixie Zabka and two granddaughters, Melissa and Monica, a son-in-law, Greg Zabka, who is a Funeral Director and they live in Seward Nebraska.
Thayne and wife Helen, live in Bountiful, Utah. They have four children, Fred, Marie, Thayne Jr. and Sylvia.
F. L. (Les) Rumsey was born January 9, 1879 at Red Oak, Iowa and died June 10, 1959 at Fullerton, Nebraska.
His boyhood was spent in Iowa. In 1899 he came to Nebraska settling in Nance County. He lived in Nance county all but 14 years when he and his wife Esther lived in Ainsworth, Nebraska.
The early part of his residence in Nance county was spent as a farmer in the North Star area, where he was active in community affairs. He served on the Nance County Board of Supervisors, also was a member of the Nance County Fair Association and the Farmers Co-op Oil Association.
Before retiring in Fullerton, Nebraska he spent 30 active years representing the State Farm Insurance Companies in and around Fullerton and Ainsworth, Nebraska
Les Rumsey's son Dayle and wife Rose reside in Fullerton and Dayle, like his father represented the State Farm Insurance Companies for 30 years before retiring in 1974.
Plenna R. Copple was born July 29, 1876, son of Charles and Lucy Melvina Copple, at Centralia, Illinois.
In September of 1885 the family of which he was a member arrived in Nance county, Nebraska. One year later they moved to the farm known as the Copple Homestead west of Fullerton. It was in this community that Dr. Copple was graduated from the Fullerton High School and grew to manhood. He taught school in this county one year. In 1898 he went to Anderson, Indiana, where he attended Anderson Normal University for a year. In 1899 he entered Northwestern University in Chicago, and received the degree of Doctor of Dentistry in 1902. In this same year he was united in marriage to Miss Goldie Grace Tranbarger whom he met while attending Anderson University. To this union was born a son, Kenneth Eugene, who died on January 5, 1911.
Following his graduation, Dr. Copple engaged in the practice of dentistry at Greeley, Nebraska, Gas City, Kansas and Central City, Nebraska. In 1906 he located in Fullerton, where he practiced his profession for 39 years.
During his many years as a citizen of this community, he was a leader in all community activities, both secular and religious. For twenty years he had been a member of the Fullerton Lions Club, being charter member and serving as the club's first secretary. He was an active member of the Community Club, and served as its president. He was a past Worshipful Master of the Cedar River masonic lodge, and a member of Eastern Star Chapter 191.
Herman Rudolf Schweitz was born to Anna and Rudolf Schweitz in Waterruch, Germany on August 14, 1893. On March 22, 1909 he arrived in Baltimore, Maryland, bound for Chicago. He had been hired in Germany to work for the Armour Meat Packing Company. When Mr. Schweitz arrived in this country, he was only sixteen and could not speak any English.
In 1911, he moved to Platte County, Nebraska to farm and in 1916, settled in Nance County. On February 18, 1917, he married Martha Hellbusch
and they farmed in the Timber Creek area until 1970, when they retired and moved to Fullerton.
They are the parents of five children:
Ernest Herman married to Doris Elaine Blaser, lives on a farm at Oakland, Nebraska. They have four sons: Ronald Ernest, Terry Paul, Arlan David and Kenneth Dale.
Edna Helen Gallo lives in Kansas City, Missouri has three children Connie Jean, Robert and Michael.
Theodore Rudolph married to Norma Marie Wagner lives at Fullerton. Theodore owns and operates Schweitz Equipment Company, Inc. They have five children Judith Lynn, David Theodore, Susan Marie, Dallas Herman and Kristine Ann.
Wilma Ellen married to Harold Leroy Dodds lives on a farm near Belgrade, Nebraska. They have three sons, Larry Dean, Randy Lee and Carroll Ray.
Raymond Karl killed May 23, 1951 in the Korean War.
Theodore Rudolph Schweitz son of Herman Rudolph and Martha Hellbusch Schweitz was born February 10, 1923, at Belgrade, Nebraska.
On April 30, 1945 he married Norma Marie Wagner, daughter of Frank Trougott and Elsie Anna Klein Wagner, at Peace Lutheran Church Timber Creek Belgrade, Nebraska.
Mr. Schweitz completed his tour of duty with the United States Army in December 1946. He then returned to Timber Creek to farm. His farm consisted of 160 acres and he also rented an additional 160 acres. In October of 1954, he became a representative of an artificial insemination company, and serviced Nance county and part of Boone.
Mr. Schweitz had already included other aspects of the dairy business when in 1953, after completing a training course in Chicago, Illinois he became a certified Surge Dealer. He continued to operate from his farm, with just one truck and only part-time help until 1962. At that time, he moved his business to its present location in Fullerton.
They are the parents of five children:
Judith Lynn Schweitz was born at St. Paul, Nebraska, December 15, 1947. She graduated from Fullerton High School May 1966. She graduated from Dana College, Blair, Nebraska with a Degree in Elementary Education, graduated in Omaha with a BS in Education. She taught five years in the Millard Elementary School. She is presently employed as a Medical assistant for a surgeon at Austin, Texas.
David Theodore was born at St. Paul, Nebraska, December 7, 1948. Graduated from Fullerton High School May 1967. He graduated from University of Nebraska-Lincoln June 1971, with a B.S. Degree in Economics. January 1972 he enlisted in the United States Army O.C.S. September 8, 1972 he married Janice Lynn Schuki at Lincoln, Nebraska. He completed his army duty November 1975, as 1st Lt. Spent three years with 1st National Bank Lincoln, Nebraska with trust and correspondent banking. They are now living at Broken Bow where David is President of Security State Bank.
Susan Marie was born May 28, 1952, at Fullerton, Nebraska. She graduated from Fullerton High School May 1970. She attended University of Nebraska-Lincoln and graduated December 1974 with a Bachelor Degree in Textiles. She is presently employed as accountant for Woung Travel Agency, Dallas, Texas.
Dallas Herman was born July 18, 1955 at Fullerton, Nebraska. Graduated from Fullerton High School May 1973. He graduated from University of Nebraska-Lincoln May 1978 with a B.S. Degree in Agriculture. The same day he was commissioned into the Army as 2nd Lt. May 20, 1978 he married Deborah Dawn Roeske at Lincoln, Nebraska. June 1, 1980, he will have completed his tour of Army duty. At that time he plans to move back to Fullerton, Nebraska, and be associated with Schweitz Equipment Company, Inc.
Kristine Anne was born April 4, 1962 at Fullerton, Nebraska. She will
graduate from Fullerton High School May 1980. In the fall she will enter University of Nebraska-Lincoln and major in pre-law.
Donald R. and Gretchen A. Treadway, with their eighteen month old daughter, Ann Catherine, born January 3, 1961, moved to Fullerton on June 24, 1962, following Don's graduation from the University of Nebraska School of Law, to be associated in law practice with John M. Brower. A home built by Mel Fox at 617 Carl Street was purchased and the family lived there until January 3, 1970, at which time they purchased the Gene Beaman residence at 106 North Johnson - a home originally built by the Critchfield family in the late 1890's. While living on Carl Street, two sons were born - Thomas Lecron on Janaruy (sic) 30, 1963, and Steven Paul on July 1, 1964. Over the years, the family has been involved in many civic, church and governmental activities. In 1968, Don was elected to serve as Nance county Attorney, which position he held until his resignation in 1979. He has also served as president of the Lions Club and the Junior Chamber of Commerce, has served as City Attorney and is active in golf and tennis activities. At the present time, he is a member of the Nebraska State Bar Association, the University of Nebraska President's Advisory Council, the Board of Counselors at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and is Chairman of the Board of Governors of the University of Nebraska Medical Center Hospital and Nebraska Psychiatric Institute. Don graduated from Kearney High School in Kearney, Nebraska in 1951, after which he attended Kearney State College where he was a member of the Antelope's Basketball team. In June of 1953, he served in the U.S. Army in Korea. After his discharge in 1955, he enrolled in the University of Nebraska in Lincoln where he received a Bachelor of Science Degree from the College of Business in May of 1957. On September 15th of that year, Don and Gretchen A. Lecron were married in Kearney, Nebraska and then made their home in Lincoln, Nebraska where Don took a position as Sales Representative with Continental Oil Company and Gretchen worked as a medical secretary. In September of 1959, Don entered the College of Law and graduated in June of 1962 with a Doctorate in Law Degree.
Gretchen has been an active member of the United Methodist Church in Fullerton, serving in a number of capacities. In 1964, she assumed the responsibility of director of the adult choir and maintains that posititon (sic) at this writing. As a member of Fullerton Chapter No. 191 of the Order of the Eastern Star, she served as Worthy Matron in 1971 and was appointed Grand Page in 1972, Grand Esther in 1973 and served as Grand Representative of Wyoming in Nebraska from 1974 to 1976. At present, she is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Masonic-Eastern Star Home for Children in Fremont, Nebraska. In 1964, she was instrumental in organizing a Community Choral Group which has performed off and on over the years for special occasions and was involved in the formation of the Mobile Meals Committee and the Fullerton Good Neighbors. She is also Past President of Chapter AG, P.E.O. Gretchen graduated from Kearney High School in 1955 and that fall began working toward a BS Degree in Nursing at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
Thomas Oliver McIntyre and his wife (nee Catherine Amanda Dean) were both born in 1825, near Cooperstown, Otsego county, New York. They moved with their family to Jones County, Iowa, at the end of the Civil War (1866); thence, in the 1870's, to northwest Nance county, Nebraska. They lived in a sod house briefly until they completed a "modern" structure (which was destroyed by fire prior to World War II).
In the latter part of the 19th century, a postoffice and small store was located in the McIntyre home, about 25 miles northwest of Fullerton. This place was identified on early Nance county and Nebraska maps as Olive (a corruption of the middle name of Thomas Oliver). The Olive school (district 13) still bears this identification, and is still in operation, although it was moved from its
original location a few years ago.
Thomas Oliver McIntyre died in 1902; and his wife, in 1907. Both are buried in the Sunset Cemetery in Cedar Rapids.
Two branches of the family, headed by sons of Thomas Oliver and Catherine Amanda, located in this part of Nebraska
One branch located in Wolbach, and was in the furniture, hardware and undertaking business for years. Several descendants still live in or near Wolbach.
A second family branch, headed by C. Morris McIntyre, moved from the family farm ("Olive") to Fullerton in 1918, and lived until 1923 in a rambling house of mildewed elegance known as "Peyton Heights," on a hill in the west end of Fullerton. In 1923, they moved to a farm on the "point" about a mile east of the city limits. They retired from farming in the 1930's and moved into Fullerton. C. M. McIntyre died in 1955; and his wife (Anna Elizabeth) died in 1970. Both are buried in the Fullerton Cemetery.
Descendants of C. M. and Elsie McIntyre now live in California, Texas, Washington and Idaho.
Frank McCormick and Mary Ellen (Stewart) McCormick moved from Iowa to Nance county in 1899. They settled near the Mount Pleasant School. They farmed in the area until about 1916, at which time they moved into Belgrade where they spent their remaining years.
Their oldest son, Francis McCormick, who is now 95 years old, was a member of the Nebraska Legislature in the early 1930's. He represented the Greeley county area, as he owned a department store in Wolbach at that time.
Orland D. Barr and his brothers Lev and Charles of Mahaska County, Iowa were hired by a friend to come to Fullerton, Nebraska approximately in 1883 to break prairie. After breaking prairie in Nance and nearby counties, Lev Barr worked in a brick kiln and helped lay bricks in building the Knapp Hotel in Fullerton. Lev located in Enid, Oklahoma and established a cement block business. Charles went west and disappeared. Their father, Jehu Barr lived in Fullerton for several years and built the hospital, Mount Jehu, which burned down about 1922.
Orland (also known as O. D. or Ollie) went to work for Ed Gould and worked on Merchant, Plum Creek, Bert and Kent and Woodline Ranches. Woodline Ranch was located on the old fairground. O. D. trained some of the world record race horses. He purchased Elkhorn Farm, east of the old fairground from Mr. Gould and his sons Orland Wesley and Harold Jehr Barr still farm it.
After working on the ranches for 19 years, O. D. rented Elkhorn Farm and managed the Hord Grain Elevator at Wolbach, Nebraska for several years. He married Clara Grace Morris, October 5, 1910. When the Dr. told him he would have to get away from the dust in the elevator, the family moved to Elkhorn farm, March 1916, and he farmed it until his death May 24, 1943.
Another son, Leonard, is retired Personnel Director of United Grocery Ltd., Richmond, California and now lives at Fremont, California. His daughter Margaret, a retired Civil Service employee, lives in Kansas City, Missouri.
W. L. Owen was born at Memphis, Nebraska, March 10, 1880. His parents were Mr. and Mrs. Levi Owen, farmers. They moved to Missouri, when he was a young boy. Then they moved back to Saunders County. He married Hulda Gustafson on February 22, 1905. Her parents were Mr. and Mrs. Carl Gustafson who were born in Sweden and came to the United States to Omaha, Nebraska as young adults.
They lived at Memphis Nebraska, engaged in farming until 1910, when they moved to Garfield county for four years, after which they moved to Genoa.
In 1919, they moved to a farm northeast of Fullerton. They lived on several farms north of Fullerton until 1947, when they moved into Fullerton. They had three sons: Virgil, Leland and Archie, and one daughter Ruth.
W. L. Owen died at the Fullerton Nursing Home, July 27, 1969. Hulda Owen is 96 years of age and has lived at the Nursing Home the past 6 years.
John William Penry was born to James Monroe Penry on May 5, 1866 at Red Oak, Iowa He came to Nebraska in 1885 by covered wagon to break prairie and settled on Horse Creek, about 12 miles west of Fullerton, where he built a house. In the big blizzard of 1888 he got to Valley, Nebraska where he put his horses up and stayed until the storm was over. He made the trip back several times and in 1890 he married Minnie Peters, born July 1, 1875 at Red Oak, Iowa, and brought her to the place he had built. Their wedding date was February 28, 1890.
To this union six children were born. Esther Amelia, December 15, 1890 at Red Oak, Iowa, Daisy Pearle, April 7, 1892 at Fullerton, John William, May 30, 1893 at Fullerton, Nettie Ruth, November 17, 1895 at Fullerton, Nebraska, Ada May, April 9, 1897 at Belgrade, Nebraska and Richard Earl, June 10, 1912 at Belgrade.
After living there for seven years they moved near Belgrade. In 1908 they bought a farm 2 1/2 miles from town and in 1917 they built a fine new house, which is owned by their youngest son Doctor Richard Penry of Hebron, Nebraska.
Mr. and Mrs. John William Penry
The oldest daughter, Esther Walker lives at Arnold, Nebraska, she is 89. Pearle Woods lives at Desert Hot Springs, California. John passed away in 1970. Nellie McBride lives at St. Helens, Oregon. Ada Becker lives at Sacramento, California. Dr. Richard Penry lives at Hebron, Nebraska.
Mr. J. W. Penry lived to be 94 years old and Minnie Penry lived to be 59 years old.
Henry Beecher Ward was born May 21, 1857 in Randolph county Indiana. He moved to Nance county in 1880. In 1882 he married Adena R. Pierce of St. Anthony, Iowa. Adenia R. Pierce was born June 22, 1863 in Marshall county Iowa.
To this union were born five children, Pierce - deceased, Ray E. deceased, Dwight E, deceased, Fred October 8, 1888 - died January 12, 1959. Gladys, Mrs. Bert Hunt of Bellflower, California.
Fred married Nettie Ruby on May 12, 1815. Their two children are Ruby, married to LeRoy Copple and lives in Gothenburg, Nebraska and Genevieve married Don W. Steffen and lives in Des Moines, Iowa. Nettie is at home at 311 Germand in Fullerton.
James Robert Ruby was born on April 7, 1863 at Harmony, Pennsylvania. In 1884 he homesteaded in Sheridan County, Nebraska. In 1887 he married Sarah Mary Graham at Gordon, Nebraska. She had been born July 29, 1861 in Washington County, Pennsylvania.
In 1895 they moved to Nance county where they lived the rest of their lives on the same farm. They had three children, Ethel, who married Phil Drury, Nettie was born on June 4, 1893 at Gordon, Nebraska. She married Fred Ward. Harry G. Ruby, who married Pearl Campbell.
James Ruby died July 7, 1949 on the farm near Fullerton and Sarah died July 19, 1954 on the farm near Fullerton.
B. F. Seely (Frank or Jack) came to Nebraska from Alton, Illinois. He married Mary Ann Feeney in Schuyler, Nebraska in November 1883. They moved to Fullerton and purchased a square block of land in the northern part of town from Randall Fuller.
He was a brick mason and built a number of business buildings in Fullerton and surrounding towns including the buildings now occupied by Whited Implement, Russells Drug, and Gonsior Floral. A residence he built in the south-west part of town for Ed Watts is now owned by Walter Dubas at 7th and Johnson streets.
Frank and Mary Ann had eleven children, a baby girl, Mrs. Ernest (Dilla) Shull, Mrs. Authur (Nellie) Finch, Mrs. John (Anna) Meacham Morrell, Fulton Francis, Leo Austin, Frank Waldon, Hugh, Walter, Mrs. Charles (Pauline Elaine) Owens, and Mrs. L. B. (Margaret) Whitaker. Frank and all his sons were called "Jack."
The youngest daughter, Margaret, and her husband, Bert, bought a parcel of land from her father in 1926 and moved into a cabin from the Chautauqua park as their first home. This building has been added to and remodeled several times throughout the years. It sits on the site of the home of the Jack Sodders family which was destoryed (sic) by a cyclone in August 1907.
L. BERT WHITAKER
Frank Marshall Whitaker was born in Illinois. He homesteaded in South Dakota in 1906 and purchased a farm in Cottonwood township, Nance county, Nebraska in 1920, now owned by Art Webb.
Frank married Emma Krug in December 1899. They raised eight children; Mrs. Oscar (Voilet) Larson, Leonard Bert, Mrs. Elmer (Carolyn Kate) Meth, Worthy Lee, Mrs. Musadora (Peggy) Hullinger, Busse Stewart, Mrs. Melvin (Hazel) Kruze Richmond, Colin Bruce and William Howard.
L. Bert is the only one still living in Fullerton and is the semi-retired owner and operator of the Fullerton Planing Mill.
James H. Kemp, a native of Virginia, where he attended William & Mary College at Williamsburg, came to Nebraska as a young man and received a law degree from the University of Nebraska in 1898. That same year he began the practice of law in Fullerton and later became associated with Robert C. Brower in the legal firm of Kemp & Brower.
In 1909, he married Elinor Orton, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Orton, a pioneer Nance county family. Mrs. Kemp died in 1959.
During his residence in Fullerton, he served as city and county attorney, was a member of the board of education, served as a director since 1915 and in 1919 was named vice-president of the First National Bank here. He was the first president of the Fullerton Lions Club. As a member of the Nebraska Legislature, he was presiding officer of the senate in 1913. He was a candidate for governor of Nebraska and also was a candidate for U.S. Senator. He was a member of state and national bar associations.
Mr. Kemp was one of the organizers of the local golf club, which was later named Kemp Country Club in his honor, and he was the donor of the annually-presented Kemp Trophy. Mr. Kemp donated the tract of land which is today's golf course south of town.
At the time of his death, on February 19, 1962, at the age of 90 years, he had extensive land holdings in Nance county.
Robinson McCray, son of Philander McCray and Margaret Jane Simpkins, was born June 12, 1855 in Van Buren County, Iowa and came to Nebraska in the early 1870's. Frances Amelia Shrader, daughter of Soloman Shrader and Catherine Catherman was born December 3, 1860 near Lanark, Illinois, moving to Butler County, Nebraska in 1874 with her parents.
Robinson and Frances (nicknamed Rob and Annie) were married at Osceola on February 7, 1882. They began their domestic life on a farm in the Rising City/Surprise area and prior to moving back to Osceola in 1903, became the parents of the following children with birth date of each as noted: Edith Alberta December 1, 1882; Myrtle February 18, 1884; Hubert Marcus September 2, 1887; Ralph C. June 24, 1890; Fred Lester December 20, 1894; and Neil Herndon Janaruy (sic) 16, 1897.
This family moved to the "west end" hills of Nance County in the spring of 1905. They left a farm located six miles northwest of Osceola because the area had been deluged with heavy rains for a couple of years and Mr. McCray became disgusted trying to grow crops on "swampland".
The move made via emigrant train was a tremendous task, as all farm implements had to be disassembled before loading, household furnishings packed and cattle driven to the railway station. Robinson, with sons Hubert and Lester, rode in the cattle car to care for the animals enroute. On arrival at Wolbach, the three McCrays stayed at the hotel and it took nearly a week, with many new neighbors helping to get everything moved from the rail station to the farm. Since the weather was unusually cold, the cookstove was the first item moved into the house. A new neighbor, the Peterson family, invited Robinson and his sons to stay with them until Mrs. McCray with daughter, Edith, and youngest son, Neil, arrived a few days later. Their son, Ralph, remained in Butler county with his Grandfather Sharder. Their second daughter, Myrtle, continued her teaching position in the Osceola area.
When the McCrays moved to Nance county, a great deal of the land was still prairie grass and this sod had to be broken before the first seed crops would be planted. Several families in the Palmer area were still living in sod houses. Prairie fires were a constant threat. In later years, Robinson preferred to forget that he accidentally started a small fire while trying to burn worms out of some wild plum bushes.
Back row: Hubert, Myrtle, Neil, Edith and Hubert.
Front: Grandma McCray, (Mrs. Rob McCray ).
Rob and Annie did most of their shopping in Wolbach as the trip could be made with a team and wagon in 2 1/2 to 3 hours one way; however, traveling time was increased if a load of grain was hauled to market. A trip to Palmer involved crossing the Loup river over an old bridge which had plank flooring with a space of several inches between each plank. The horses could see the water below and many were reluctant to make the crossing without blinders and some had to be blindfolded and lead by the driver.
"Runaways" with horses were a common occurrence and the McCray boys had a big laugh when their sister, Myrtle, related her "runaway" experience on the way to school. She had failed to completely wrap the silverware in her lunch box and ruts in the road caused the buggy to rattle the metal and scare her horse, Topsy. Fortunately, she managed to hold onto the reins and regain control after a very wild ride. Sister Edith also had quite a wild buggy ride. She and her mother started for town with a couple of crates of eggs to sell. Edith chose the most spirited horse to pull the buggy. While enroute, another traveler coming up behind them desired to pass. Mrs. McCray told Edith to "let him go" .... meaning around them .... Edith thought her mother meant to "let the horse go" .... which the animal did and away they went. Needless to say, when they got to town, they found no market for broken and smashed eggs.
Lester and Neil's first horseless carriage ride was in the summer of 1906, when Mr. Orton of Fullerton took them for a spin in his new red "Brush" automobile.
In the spring of 1916, the McCray family moved to a farm 4 miles west of Fullerton, now known as the "Walsh Farm". The eldest son, Hubert, remained on the farm near Wolbach.
Robinson lost his life in a corn sheller accident in January 1924, at his farm.
Annie and daughter, Edith, remained on the farm until 1942. They moved into Fullerton, where they lived until Mrs. McCray's death in June 1947.
Ancestors of Robinson McCray have been traced to the 13th century in the Highlands of Scotland and include several members of nobility. His English/Irish ancestors emigrated to America in 1657-1687 and his Scottish ancestor, Samuel McCray I, followed in 1730. Mrs. McCray's ancestor, David Katterman, emigrated from Germany to America via the Ship SS. Andrew on September 23, 1752. A "Catherman" family reunion has been held at Mifflinburgh, Pennsylvania annually since 1890.
Many McCray ancestors have distinguished themselves by answering the call of their country in times of war by serving in the American Revoluntionary (sic) War, Civil War and World Wars I and II.
In this centennial year of Nance county when this history is being written the eight children of William McNeff family are all living. Muriel born in 1900, Mrs. Earl Barnica lives in Julesburg, Colorado. Fern, 1901, Mrs. Neil McCray in Fullerton, Nebraska. George, 1902, of LaJolla California, Vivian, 1905, of Fullerton, Nebraska, Marjorie, 1906, Mrs. Bruce Bennett at Oshkosh, Nebraska,
Lee Roy, 1907, at Brule, Nebraska. Helen 1909, Mrs. William Grapes at Boone, Nebraska. Raymond McNeff, 1911 in Fullerton, Nebraska. Those living in Nance County are Fern who married Neil McCray at Council Bluffs, Iowa on December 26, 1923. They started farming in the spring of 1924 on the Dolson farm west of Fullerton in the "L" School District area, where their six children were born. Clifford in 1926, now living five miles west of Fullerton on Ridge farms and has five children, one deceased. Shirley, 1927, Mrs. Ivan Cunningham, on the farm in the valley west of Fullerton has seven children. Wilma, 1929, Mrs. Richard Greer, lives in Lincoln, Nebraska and has 3 sons. Mrs. Roberta, 1930, Flaherty lives in Vallejo, California and has eight children. Melvin, 1932, works in Grand Island, and lives in Alda, has two children. Bethene, 1934, Mrs. Baxter Turner, in Salisbury, North Carolina and has three children. The Neil McCray family lived on this farm almost 15 years until the fall of 1937 when they moved to the Douthit farm four miles west of Fullerton on the Ridge which they bought in 1934. All the children were married while they lived here and in 1960 they built a new home in Fullerton and retired from the farm.
Vivian McNeff married Veva Weeks and they started farming on the first farm of William McNeff, which he bought in 1902, south of North Star on Horse Creek in 1932. Their seven children are Bill McNeff of Minneapolis, Minnesota, Ronald McNeff, Palmer, Nebraska, Ray McNeff, Palmer Nebraska, Marvin McNeff, of St. Paul, Minnesota, Robert McNeff, Palmer, Nebraska, Kathy (Mrs. John Jensen,) Columbia, Missouri, Madalyn (Mrs. Wade Harwood,) Pittsburg, Pennsylvania.
Raymond McNeff married Lillian Otlewske in 1936 and they lived on the home place until 1959 when they built a new home in Fullerton, Nebraska and live there but still run the farm. They have one daughter, Sherry (Mrs. Less Garris) whose home is in Lakewood, Colorado.
Harvey Ray Whited and Ethel Mae Trotter were married March 10, 1915 at the Belgrade Methodist Parsonage.
Mae was born near Belgrade to Thomas Arthur and Susie (McGee) Trotter on March 5, 1894. Susie McGee was born at Oakland, Iowa in 1870 and died at Belgrade, Nebraska August 27, 1937. She was raised in Iowa.
They came to Nebraska in a covered wagon and raised a family of seven, four boys and three girls.
Harvey Whited was born on February 22, 1895 six miles southwest of St. Edward, Nebraska to Wllm and Lena (Rusch) Whited. Lena was Wllm's second wife and three children were born to this union: Harvey Ray Whited and Pearl (Whited) Deaman and Harry. There were two boys and one girl from the first marriage, Ben, Ralph and Grace.
When Harvey was nine years old the family moved to a farm six miles northeast of Belgrade. He attended school in Boone county at District 15 and went to the Pinnacle Hill School.
After they were married Harvey and Mae farmed the home place for one year. But this was sold and they moved to her mother's farm two miles northeast of Belgrade. In 1926 they bought a farm west of Fullerton for $17,600 and paid down the $5,000. The company foreclosed and resold the farm for $3,200.
There were seven bad years and the resulting depression left memories of some very bad times. Fifty head of cattle brought only $750 and sixty head of hogs brought $250 with trucking and freight to be taken out of that. In 1932 corn brought ten cents a bushel.
Some families ground their own corn and wheat to use for corn meal and flour. One man walked 4 1/2 miles to a store to buy groceries and potatoes. The potatoes were frozen by the time he reached home again. That year the neighborhood was snowed in for three weeks.
One bill collector came to a neighbor's home and took everything he could find that could be sold. The man was down with a broken leg at the time.
In 1934 and 35 Harvey acted as County Road Boss and hired local men as crews to scoop the roads clear. There were some men with frozen hands and faces. Their lunches were frozen by lunchtime but eaten anyway by men resting on snowbanks. Wages were $2.00 a day.
Belgrade lost both of its banks to the Depression and Fullerton lost one.
In 1937 the Whited family bought into the John Deere agency and moved from the farm to Fullerton. In 1964 Harvey sold his share of the business to his sons, Leonard and Richard. He still goes almost daily to the store. He especially enjoyed the men's card club that flourished during the sixties. About thirty-five men used an empty building on Fullerton's Main Street as a meeting place.
Mae walks uptown when the weather permits, attends Social Hour club meetings and visits with her friends on the telephone.
The Whiteds have two sons, Leonard and Richard, and two daughters Dorothy and Helen. Leonard Whited married Verda Peterson of Central City. Their children are Robert Whited married to Margie Berlin of Genoa, children: Shawn, Michael, Shannon, Christopher and Jennifer. Roger Whited married Sharon Lockhart. Children Rachelle, Steven, Susan and Scott. Gaylen Whited of Lincoln, Connie Whited of Lincoln. Helen Whited married Eugene Foland and now lives in Newman Grove. Their children: Linda Married Dal Draper of Norfolk. Nila married Marvin Nelson. Children: Jamie, Adam and Amanda. Dale and Pam live in Grand Island. Darrell and Sandy live in Lincoln. David lives in Fort Collins, Colorado. Richard Whited married Grace Travers. Children Belinda, Kevin and Cara at home. Dorothy Whited married Sam King. Their children Jennifer married Gary Beran and they live in Kearney; Donald, Kenneth and Bobby.
Willis (Bill) Varner Denton was born June 7, 1902 at Sullivan, Texas to William Campbell Denton and Lily Alice-Olivine White Denton. Wilma Bowman was born December 21, 1901, at Abingdon, Virginia to Andrew Haskeel Bowman and Clara Josephine Blivins Bowman.
Willis and Wilma were married on December 24 1921 at Harr, Tennessee. To this union six children were born. Lilian Roselie, 1923, deceased 1960, Lois Jean, 1926, William Joseph 1928, Mary Kathleen, 1930, Richard Lynn, 1933, Gloria Ann, 1937.
The couple moved to Fullerton in 1929 from Bristol, Tennessee. They belong to the Methodist church. Willis has farmed, drove a truck and painted for a livelihood. He has also worked as a police officer. Wilma is a member of the Women's Club, Eastern Star, Social Hour Club and Church Circle Ruth.
T. A. Shively came out from Iowa in year of 1872 and homesteaded a 80 acres 1/2 mile south of the Nance county line. For his home he made a dugout in side of a hill. He traded and hunted with the Indians and then he went back to Iowa and brought his folks to Clarks, Nebraska. When the train stopped in Clarks his mother had passed away and she was the second person buried at Pierce Chapel grave yard. He and his father loaded the things from the train to a wagon. With a team of oxen hitched to it and headed to the dugout to live. They batched for several years when T. A. Shively got married to Indiana Violet Richard, another homestead family in 1877 at Central City. They made the trip to Central City by wagon and team of oxen. They made their home in the dugout for several years then they moved into Fullerton in early 80's where Mr. Shively carried mail from Fullerton to Genoa by team of oxen and wagon. Later years he moved back to the dugout and started to plow sod for a sod house. He used a wooden plow and his team of oxen. Their house had several rooms. They had 7 children then they built the house that is still standing. There has been 5 generations lived on the farm in the 107 years and 3 generations still living there. There has been 6 generations visiting the farm.
© 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 by Ted & Carole Miller