Henry header


Biographies S

 Following are some biographies of families who at one time or another lived in Henry Co. Illinois. In some cases it is a family member who was a Henry Co. resident so please read carefully!


Harvey M. Sampson, engaged in the grain business at Menlo, Iowa, in 1869, where he remained ten years. In 1880 he took the management of Mr. Stuart's business at Guthrie Center. He is an able business man, and is one of the most popular grain men in Guthrie county. He was born in Essex county, New York, July 13, 1830, where he was reared and educated. In 1848 he moved to Franklin county, New York, where he resided until 1852. He then emigrated to California where he was mining and prospecting until 1855. He then returned to Franklin county where he was engaged in the manufacture of starch, and was also in the lumber trade. In 1861 he located in Geneseo, Illinois, where he was in the employ of the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific railroad for one year, he then held a situation with that company for six years in Henry Marshall county, Illinois. In 1869 he came to Menlo, Iowa, and in 1880 he came to Guthrie Center. He was united in marriage May 5, 1856, with Miss Sarah M. Rowell, a native of Vermont. They have one child--Celia, married to W. M. Harris, of Menlo. Mr. Sampson is a member of Orange lodge, No. 123, A. F. & A. M., of this city, Milton chapter, No. 98, R. A. M.

Source: History of Guthrie and Adair Counties, Iowa, Springfield, Ill: Continental Hist. Co., 1884 Guthrie Center


SAMUELSON, August, farmer, section 22, P. O. Stanton; born in Sweden, in Ostergothland, November 10, 1836. He emigrated to America in 1868, stopping first in Henry County, Illinois, farming by the month for two years; then rented land for two years. In 1874 he moved to Page County, and bought 160 acres of land, but sold out in 1877 and moved to Montgomery County, where he now has 120 acres of good and well improved land. He was married March 15, 1873, to Christine Erickson, a native of Sweden, born December 6, 1853. They have two children: Eva E., born December 6, 1873; May W., born May 26, 1879. They are members of the church.

Source: History of Montgomery County Iowa, 1881 Scott Twp


One of the prosperous and influential farmers of Wayne county is Mr. Edward Sandahl, who owns a very valuable property in section fourteen, township twenty-six, range four. He was one of those wise and far-sighted pioneers who foresaw the prosperity which has attended this region and who accordingly, with the greatest perseverance, toiled along through the poor years and remained to enjoy the results of many years labor.

Mr. Sandahl is a native of the state of Illinois, having been born in Henry county, in 1858. He was the son of Samuel and Caroline Sandahl, both of Sweden, who came to America the year previons to his birth. They came in a sailboat, as was customary, and the voyage from Guttenburg to New York City took up nine weeks and three days. The father was an officer in the Swedish army but on coming to America, took up the trade of a carpenter. The subscriber spent his childhood in Illinois and received his education in the local public schools.

In 1884, Mr. Sandahl came to Wayne county, Nebraska, where he purchased his present farm of one hundred and sixty acres from Joe Egler, who had taken it up as a homestead four years previous. Mr. Sandahl still occupies this farm, which he has improved in many respects, so that now it makes him a very pleasant, comfortable home. He has added to his first purchase until he now owns six hundred and forty acres.

In 1882 he was united in marriage to Huldah Bark, of Mercer county, Illinois, who was born in Sweden, and they are the parents of seven children: Lillie A., wife of Ernest Hyps; Carl F., Edward L., Nettie F., George E., Edna C., and Huldah B.

Both Mr. and Mrs. Sandahl are well and favorably known, and they are quite prominent in both a social and educational line. They are members of the Swedish Lutheran church at Wakefield.

Source: The Compendium of History, Reminiscence and Biography of Nebraska, Alden Publishing Co, Chicago IL 1912


SCHRIVER, John D., dry goods merchant, Villisca. Mr. Schriver was born March 5, 1822, in Adams County, Pennsylvania, and there grew to manhood. In his boyhood days he learned the tailor's trade in Gettysburg, and afterward went to Mercersburg, Franklin County, and engaged in the tailoring business, but in a short time began handling clothing, and after a time his tailoring establishment was transformed into a general merchandising concern. He continued here for about ten years. In 1856 he moved to Kewanee, Illinois, where he engaged in the clothing trade, and changed - after a year or two, into a general store. He remained in Kewanee until 1871; when he opened a store in Villisca which was managed by his son, John C., Mr. S. remaining in Kewanee until 1874 when he moved his family to Villisca. Mr. Schriver has been longer in the dry goods business than any man in Villisca, and they have perhaps the largest trade of any house in the town, selling exclusively for cash. In Kewanee Mr. Schriver did the leading business from 1864 to 1866. Mr. S. is a member of the Masonic fraternity. Married August 19, 1845, to Matilda Stockhouse, of Mount Joy, Pennsylvania. They have six children living: John C., born January 14, '48, in Pa.; Almira A., January 30 '54, in Pa.; Irene M., October 14, '56, in Ills.' E. Jessie, born March 31, '62; three deceased. His wife was born December 9, 1823, in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

Source: History of Montgomery County Iowa 1881, City of Villisca.


John H. Schroeder, one of the native farmers and stockmen of Edford township, was born on section 15, February 11, 1868. His parents, G. Henry and Wilhelmina (Wiegand) Schroeder, were of German birth and upon coming to this country engaged in farming in Edford township, this county, on section 15, and later on section 23, where Charles Schroeder now makes his home. They are now living in Geneseo, having put aside the heavier of life's cares.

John H. Schroeder is the third in order of birth in a family of eight children, four sons, four daughters. He was reared at home and acquired a good education, for after he had completed the course offered by the district school he went to the Northwestern Normal in Geneseo for two years. He had from childhood worked upon the home farm, and when his school life was over he returned to it to assume its cares and responsibilities in real earnest. After his marriage he brought his bride to the farm where he now lives. In 1903 he purchased one hundred and sixty acres in another part of the township. He pursues general farming and has quite extensively engaged in the stock business making a specialty of polled Angus cattle.

In Osco township, January 30, 1895, Mr. Schroeder was united in marriage to Miss Nora E. Weidlein. She was born in that section of Henry county and is a daughter of Andrew and Sarah E. (Conrad) Weidlein. Two children have been born to the couple: Lucile K. and Arley J. Mr. and Mrs. Schroeder are members of the Congregational church and endeavor to lead good Christian lives. In his political views Mr. Schroeder leans toward the democratic party, but he is independent in his attitude toward local matters, casting his vote for the man or measure that appeals to him as the right one. He has not been desirous of holding office, but for a period of eleven years he served very efficiently as town clerk. Fully alive to the necessity for hard work and determined to be numbered among the more prosperous of the township's farmers, he has gained the good will of all who have come in contact with him.

Source: History of Henry County, Illinois, by Henry L. Kiner, Chicago, The Pioneer Publishing Company, 1910

Co-Submitters: William C. Young III (Schroeder & Weidlein descendant) and Mary Margaret Jones (Weidlein descendant)


One of the substantial farmers and stockmen of Henry country is Louis Schroeder, who on his farm on the northwest quarter of section 32, Edford township, makes a specialty of breeding Cotswold sheep and shorthorn cattle. He was born in that township, near Geneseo, April 24, 1877, and is the son of George H. and Wilhelmina (Weigand) Schroeder. Both parents are still living in Geneseo, whither the father retired after his arduous labors as a tiller of the soil.

Louis Schroeder was reared at home under the guidance of his parents and was early initiated into the work on the farm. He attended the country school of his district, and after having completed the course of study prescribed continued his education at the Geneseo Collegiate Institute. He then returned to the paternal farm, and until his twenty-third year rendered his father valuable assistance. He then went to Osco township, rented some land and farmed there for three years. Six years ago he returned to Edford township, where he purchased his present farm of one hundred and eighty acres of fine land. Several substantial buildings have since been erected, the old have been put in good repair, and the soil has been subjected to a systematic cultivation that will increase its fertility as the years pass on.

In the city of Geneseo, on the 24th day of January, 1900, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Schroeder and Miss Carrie Weidlein, a daughter of Andrew and Sarah (Conrad) Weidlein. Mrs. Schroeder is a native of this county, her birth having occurred in Osco township, and she has become the mother of two children: Merle W. and Kenneth Lyle.

When called upon to exercise his franchise, he invariably casts his vote for the republican candidates as representing the choice of the party with whose principles he is in most accord. He has not, however, given much time to either political or public matters, although he takes a deep interest in questions of importance, especially as they concern his fellow citizens and for one term served as collector for his township. His farm and stock demand the most of his attention, and by hard work he has brought both to a high standard and has made a place for himself among the prominent members of his community.

Source: History of Henry County, Illinois, by Henry L. Kiner, Chicago, Pioneer Publishing Company, 1910

Co-Submitters: William C. Young III (Schroeder & Weidlein descendant) and Mary Margaret Jones (Weidlein descendant)


SCHUMACHER J. H. Farmer, Sec. 28; P. O. Ulah; born Germany, Aug. 23, 1820; Ind; Luth; owns 200 acres land, value $12,000; lived in Germany nineteen years; sailed on the ocean; went to Australia; crossed the ocean to this country five times; served in Grand-duke's army of Oldenburg, Germany, and came to this country in 1846; came to this state same year; came to this county in 1851, one of the early settlers; holds office of School Director and Pathmaster; married Anna Carrie Grammer, June 6, 1848; she was born in kingdom of Hanover, Jan. 1, 1826; have five children; lost four.

Source: History of Henry County, Illinois, Its Tax-Payers and Voters; Chicago: H. F. Kett & Co., 1877.

Submitted by: Bonnie Wiley


This gentleman was born in Crawford county, Pennsylvania, in 1833, son of Joseph and Levina (Loper) Seley. His father was born in Pennsylvania, on the Susquehanna river, and was of Scotch ancestry, while his mother was of English extraction and a native of New Jersey. Both died and are buried in Crawford county, Pennsylvania. The father passed away at the age of seventy-five years. He was a farmer all his life; in politics a Democrat; and in religion, a Baptist. Their family was composed of eleven children, of whom William B. was the seventh son.

Mr. Seley grew up on a farm in his native State, receiving an ordinary education in the common schools, which was afterward supplemented by study and reading at home. This reading he has continued all through life, has gained a general store of useful knowledge, and is well posted on the topics of the day. Mr. Seley remained in Pennsylvania, engaged in agricultural pursuits, until 1860, when he moved to Henry county, Illinois, spending four years there.

At the end of that time he returned to Pennsylvania, and a year later came west again, this time to Union county, Iowa, where he was one of the early settlers of the county and an important factor in its growth and development. In 1877 he disposed of his interests there and came to Adams county. He came to his present farm, 160 acres in section 12, Carl township, in 1883. From its wild state he has brought it up to a high development. His cottage home is erected on a natural building site and near by are his orchard and grove. Here he is engaged in general farming and stock-raising, assisted by his sons.

In Crawford county, Pennsylvania, at the age of twenty-three years, he wedded Miss Lucretia Finlay, who was born, reared and educated in the Keystone State. Her father, William Finlay, was born in Ireland and was only six months old when he arrived in Pennsylvania, where he was reared. Her mother, Rebecca Finlay, nee Taylor, was a native of Crawford county, that State. Mr. and Mrs. Seley have had born to them sixteen children, eight sons and eight daughters, eleven of whom are now living, namely: Thomas B., of Creston, Iowa; Jennie, a successful teacher of Carl township, this county; Willie E., of Adair county, Iowa; Ed. F., of Creston, engaged in business with his brother Thomas B.; Minnie, wife of Joseph Fisher; Mary, who is attending the Creston high school; and Joseph F., Samuel L., Della W., Gifford W. and Gracie Mabel, at home. Ed. F. is a graduate of the Creston high school and was the recipient of a gold medal.

Politically Mr. Seley is a People's man, believing in the best measures and best laws for the greatest number of people. He and his wife and daughter Mary are members of the Congregational church.

Source: Biographical History of Montgomery and Adams Counties, Iowa, Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1892


P. F. SHACKLE, druggist, of the firm of Shockle (sic) & Willis, was born in Ohio October 9, 1835. He received a scientific education in Ohio and Illinois, and commenced business in 1863, having taught school prior to this time. He opened a drug and grocery business in Berlin, Ill, which he continued two years. He then taught school six months, and was afterward in the drug business in Woodhull, Ill., four years, when he sold out and went into the same business in Iowa, remaining five years. He came Columbus, Kan., in 1873, and commenced his present business. He owns farm lands in the county, city property, and has a branch drug store in Weir City, Kan. He was Postmaster and Justice of the Peace in Berlin, Ill., and is now a member of A. F. & A. M. and A. O. U. W.

He was married to Miss Lizzie B. Weir, of Woodhull, Ill., July 5, 1861. They have five children living- Mollie, Harry M., Thomas W., Lizzie E., Alice and Madge. They have lost two children--Hattie Zoe and Ira D.

Source: Cutler's History of the State of Kansas, 1883


Sherman William Shafer is a prominent and well known farmer and stockman residing on Section 18, Geneseo Township, where he owns a highly improved and valuable tract of land of three hundred and twenty-seven acres. He was born in Williams County, Ohio, on the 22 of November, 1864, his parents being William and Mary (Varnes) Shafer, likewise natives of the Buckeye state. The paternal grandfather, Amasa Shafer, was a native of Germany and on coming to the new world took up his abode in Pennsylvania. Subsequently he removed to Williams County, Ohio, where he passed away when well advanced in years. In early manhood he weeded Miss Elizabeth Hill by whom he had eight children. The great-grandfather of our subject on the paternal side participated in the Revolutionary War. Stephen Varies, the maternal grandfather of Shaman W. Shafer, was born in Pennsylvania and was of German descent. Throughout his active business career he was identified with general agricultural pursuits. He was twice married and lived to an advanced age.

William Shafer, the father of Mr. Shafer of this review, cam to Henry County, Illinois, in 1865, locating in Hanna Township, where he purchased a farm of one hundred and sixty acres, which he improved. As time passed by and his financial resources increased, he extended the boundaries of the place by additional purchase until it included three hundred and sixty acres. He likewise owned four hundred acres of land in Iowa and six hundred and forty acres in Nebraska, and was widely recognized as a most prosperous, progressive and enterprising citizen. He continued to reside on his farm in Hanna Township until the time of his demise, which occurred in 1900, when he had attained the age of seventy years. He served his fellow townsmen in the position of assessor for many years and in public as well as in private life proved himself well worthy of the trust reposed in him. both he and his wife were devoted and consistent members of the Methodist Church, in the faith of which the latter passed away in 1890, when fifty-two years of age. Unto this worthy couple were born six children, three sons and three daughters, as follows: George and Fremont, who are now deceased; Sherman William, of this review; May C., the wife of William Myers, of Geneseo; Clara M., the wife of F. A. Snodgrass, of Geneseo; and Nellie M., who died at the age of twenty-one years.

Sherman William Shafer was but a few months old when brought by his parents to this county and was reared on his father's farm in Hanna Township. He first attended the district schools, then pursued a course in the Colona high school and subsequently entered the Geneseo Collegiate Institute. After leaving that institution he was engaged in the operation of a rented tract of land for two years and then bought a farm of two hundred and seventy acres in Hanna Township, near Cleveland, on which he made his home for eight years. On the expiration of that period he leased the farm and took up his abode in geneseo where he continued to reside for eleven years. During three years of that time he was engaged in the grain trade and for one year conducted a furniture business. In 1906 he purchased his present home farm of three hundred and twenty-seven acres in Geneseo township and located thereon in the following year. He still owns one hundred and twenty acres in Hanna Township. In addition to cultivating the cereals best adapted to soil and climate he also handles cattle on quite an extensive scale, feeding about two hundred head annually. He bought cattle for a number of years and in both his farming and stock-raising interest has gained a measure of prosperity that well entitles him to recognition among the most substantial and leading citizens of the county. He is a director in the Farmers National Bank of Geneseo.

On the 22d of December, 1886, Mr. Shafer was united in marriage to Miss Ida Withrow, whose birth occurred in Hanna Township in September, 1864, her parents being John W. and Arvilla M. (Allen) Withrow, who took up their abode in Henry County in 1835 and were among the first settlers here. A sketch of John W. Withrow appears on another page of this volume. Unto Mr. And Mrs. Shafer have been born four children: Minnie B., John W., Mary A. and Donald, all at home.

Politically Mr. Shafer is a stalwart advocate of the Republican Party and at the present time is serving as assistant supervisor of Geneseo Township, discharging his official duties in a most prompt and capable manner. He is likewise acting as trustee of the township high school board of education. While a resident of Geneseo he served one term of two years as a member of the city council. His fraternal relations are with the Modern Woodmen, while his religious faith is indicated by his membership in the Methodist Episcopal Church at Geneseo, with which his wife is also identified. He has resided in this county throughout practically his entire life and has gained the warm esteem of all with whom he has come in contact, because of his upright and honorable career and also by reason of the straightforward methods he has ever followed in his business dealings.

Source: "History of Henry County Illinois" by Henry L. Kiner, Volume II, Chicago: Pioneer Publishing Co 1910

Submitted by: Alice Gless


Andrew O. Shostrom is the proprietor of one of the most attractive homesteads in Polk county, it being pleasantly located on section , township 13, range 3. His comfortable residence is flanked by a good barn and the various other out-buildings required by the progressive agriculturist. As a tiller of the soil he is thorough and skillful, and has been uniformly fortunate in his investments.

Like many of the best citizens of this section of the state, Mr. Shostrom is a native of Sweden, born at Hogobruk, June 6, 1846, and is a son of Olof and Anna Shostrom, both natives of Gestleborgslan, Sweden. The mother died in that country when our subject was only four years old, and a sister also departed this life there. There were only three children in the family, and the other son died in Illinois.

Olof Shostrom was born January 11, 1819, and in 1857 emigrated to America, settling at Oneida, Knox county, Illinois, on the 20th of October, that year. He was an ironworker in his native land, and that occupation he continued to follow for twenty-one years, working at the same in both Wataga and Altona, Illinois. Later he engaged in the manufacture of wagons at Kewanee, that state, and after coming to Nebraska, in 1872, gave his attention to farming and blacksmithing. His homestead was the east half of the southwest quarter of section 32, township 14, range 3, Polk county, which he secured on first coming to the county, but in the fall of 1872 he returned to Illinois, and did not locate permanently here until the following spring. He was a member of the Lutheran church in that state, and wherever known was held in high regard. He died August 11, 1887, while on a visit to Burlington, Iowa, but his remains were brought back and interred in the Swede Home cemetery. Prior to leaving Sweden, he was a second time married, and this wife died in 1865. The two children born of this union are also deceased.

Andrew O. Shostrom was eleven years old when he came with the family to the new world. His education, which was begun in Sweden, was completed in the schools of Knox county, Illinois, and he grew to manhood in that state, devoting his time while not in school to assisting his father in the shop. Together they worked until the latter's death. When they came to Polk county, Nebraska, in 1872, our subject secured the west half of the southwest quarter of the same section on which his father located, and to his homestead he brought his family in the spring of 1873. They were living in their little sod shanty during the frightful snow storm of April, that year, and the first season raised only a little sod corn. In 1874 they raised some wheat, but the grasshoppers destroyed the corn. Prosperity at length crowned their efforts, and Mr. Shostrom is now the owner of four hundred acres of valuable land, all under excellent cultivation with the exception of one hundred and forty acres, it being the work of his own hands. He raises a good grade of stock, and all the cereals adapted to this climate.

In 1867 Mr. Shostrom married Miss Christina Ericson, also a native of Sweden, who came to America in 1854. Her father, Eric Ericson, also came to this country and lived for a time in Henry county, Illinois, but finally returned to Sweden, where his death occurred. Mr. and Mrs. Shostrom have a family of eight children: Eleanora C., Louisa D., Estella C., Minnie J., Lillie A., Helen R., Aibin L. and Edwin A., all of whom have been educated in English schools, and Mr. Shostrom is now efficiently serving as treasurer of school district No. 51. He is identified with the Republican party. To the enterprises calculated for the general welfare of the people around him, he has ever been a cheerful and liberal contributor, and the community has no more public-spirited or enterprising citizen than he.

Source: Memorial and Biographical Record of Butler, Polk, Seward, York and Fillmore Counties Nebraska, p944-945


Hons Shult, a general farmer and stock-raiser, residing on section 3, Lynn Township, is a native of Sweden, where, in Smolan, that county, he was born Oct 16, 1834. The parents of Mr. Shult were extensive farmers in their native country. They emigrated to the United States in 1857and soon thereafter located in Lynn Township, this county, where the son had preceded them three years previously, in 1854. The father died in Lynn Township in February, 1871, and his mother is at present residing with her son, Hons, and is in her 77th year.

Hons Shult, subject of this notice, on emigration to the United States, came almost immediately to this county, where he was engaged for a time in labor on the railroads, alternating the same by working on the farm for three years. He then rented land, which he cultivated for his own individual benefit for some seven years. At the expiration of that time he purchased 70 acres of unimproved land. This was in the year 1863, and Mr. Shult entered at once upon the cultivation and improvement of his land, where he determined to establish a home for himself and family.

He was united in the bonds of marriage July 19, 1862 at Andover, this county, with Miss Mary Johnson, a native of Sweden. She was born March 9, 1841, and emigrated to the land of possibilities with her parents when she was 19 years of age, they settling in Lynn Township. Her father died other residence, March 18, 1883, aged 72 years. Her mother still survives and resides in Orion. Mr. Shult at present is proprieter of 435 ares of well improved land, locaed on sections 3, 4, 9, and 10. In addition to the time he devotes to agriculture, he is also to a considerable extent engaged in stock-raising and as an agriculturist and stock-raiser he has met with considerable success. His family are members of the Swedish Lutheran Church of Orion.

Mr. Shult has held the office of School Director for some time, and politically is identified with the Republican party.

Source: State Library Records, Henry County, 1885 - Page 796


Not on the plane of affluence did Hons Shult start out on life's journey, but in the valley of limited circumstances with the rough and rugged path of hard undertaking before him. He has met with many difficulties and obstacles but has steadily overcome these, and is today one of the most prosperous citizens of his community. For over a third of a century he has actively engaged in farming in Lynn township, but now in the evening of life is enjoying a well-earned rest at his pleasant home in Orion.

Born in Skepersta Soken, Genspeng, Sweden, October 16, 1834, Mr. Shult was nineteen years of age when, in 1854, he took passage on a sailing vessel at Guttenberg and after what was then considered a speedy voyage of five weeks, landed in New York on the 26th of July. He proceded at once to Henry county, Illinois, and soon after his arrival at Hickory Grove, Lynn township, obtained employment at grading on the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy railroad, working that summer and fall as far south as Quincy.

He then returned to Henry County and spent the three following winters in chopping cord wood on the island. Being ill with fever and ague he was unable to work during the summer months for three years. After his recovery, Mr. Shult rented land which he operated for three years, and then purchased a tract of seventy acres which he still owns, it being at that time wild and covered with dense growth of underbrush, which he at length grubbed up. In his farming operations he met with most excellent success and was able to add to his landed possessions from time to time until he now has five hundred and twenty-five acres of very valuable and productive land. The last three hundred acres which he purchased was an improved farm. Upon this land are three sets of good farm buildings, and everything about the place betokens the care and supervision of a painstaking owner. Having acquired a handsome competence, he removed to Orion, where he built a fine home in 1894, and has since lived a retired life.

In 1862 in Henry county, Mr. Shult married Miss Mary Johnson, a Swedish lady and a daughter of Andrew Johnson who emigrated with his family to the new world and settled in Henry county, Illinois, in 1861. Mr. And Mrs. Shult are the parents of six children who are still living, namely: Albert, who is married and operates a part of the home farm, Frank Edward, a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church, who is married and is now located in Woodhull, this county; Josephine, wife of August M. Johnson, who is engaged in farming upon the Shult land; Oscar, who is also married and lives on the old homestead; Ernest, who assists his brothers in the cultivation of  their father's farm, and Lydia, at home. Two of the children met death very suddenly November 13, 1888 while crossing the railroad track on the farm. Both the children and horses were killed, though Oscar, the oldest who was driving, was not seriously injured. These were William, aged ten, and Ida, aged twelve years. Their deaths were a severe blow to the parents and many friends of the family.

Mr. Shult's political support has ever been given the Republican party since he cast his first presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln in 1860, but he has never taken a very active part in politics aside from voting. As a progressive and enterprising citizen he has been prominently identified with educational affairs and with two others started the school in his neighborhood, of which he has been a director for many years. Both he and his wife are earnest members of the Swedish Lutheran Church of  Orion and are people of the highest respectability. Meeting with many discouragements during the first years spent in this country, Mr. Shult once decided to return to his native land, but being taken with ague about that time was unable to travel and so remained in America. Soon prosperity shone upon his efforts and he is today one of the most substantial men of the community in which he lives.

Source: The Biographical Record of Henry County, Illinois, 1901, pp 106 - 108

Both of the above biographies of Mr. Shult were submitted by Megan Shult


Alson J. Shumway, who started in the abstract business when he came to Scottsbluff in 1905, continued in the same until he entered the National army, October 16, 1918, and went to France as a member of an ammunition train, 77th division sector Y. M. C. A.

Mr. Shumway was born at Oxford, Illinois, May 1, 1869, and is a son of G. L. Shumway, extended mention of whom will be found in this work. He first attended the country schools and later Knox College, beginning business life in the newspaper business and prior to coming to Scottsbluff was  editor of a journal published at Harrisburg, Nebraska.

On September 1, 1896, Mr. Shumway was united in marriage to Mrs. Jennette (McKinnon) Rosenfeldt, who was born at Muskegon, Michigan, the fifth in a family of ten children born to Hugh and Elizabeth (Mickel) McKinnon, the other survivors being: Mrs. John R. Kelley, of Harrisburg, Nebraska; Edward J., who is a farmer near Flowerfield, Nebraska; and M. M. and H. O., both of whom are residents of Scottsbluff. Mr. and Mrs. Shumway have two sons: Burgess McKinnon and Hugh S., the latter of whom, born June 19, 1906, is yet in school. The elder son was born June 19,    1898, was well educated and entered the National army for military training July 5, 1918. He  remained in the training camp at Mare Island, California, until his honorable discharge, February 19, 1919.

Mr. and Mrs. Shumway are members of the Christian Science church. He belongs to the Knights of Pythias and the Royal Neighbors, is a Scottish Rite Mason and both he and wife are members of the Eastern Star. Mr. Shumway is a Republican in politics. During his absence, Mrs. Shumway carried on the abstract business very efficiently. This office has the only set of abstract    books in the county that have been photographed from the original records. Mrs. Shumway is of  Scotch ancestry. Her people came to Muskegon, Michigan, in 1870, moved from there to Chicago, where her father was a machinist in the railway shops, and came to Nebraska in 1889 and  homesteaded. Both parents died in this state.

Source: History of Western Nebraska and Its People, Grant L. Shumway, Western Publishing and Engraving Co; 1921; vol III; p738



Mr. and Mrs. S.B. Shumway

Stephen Burroughs Shumway was born at Spring Hill, Bradford county, Pennsylvania, April 15, 1822. He came with his parents to Lee county, Illinois, at a very early date. With his father he farmed and hauled wheat to Chicago with ox teams, and once their loads were mired down in the mud of State street in that city.

In 1849, he quit Knox College, in his senior year, where he was working his way, shaving shingles, and went to California, passing through western Nebraska in 1850. He remembered a terrific rain the night they were encamped at Chimney Rock. They sat up in their tents for hours with their blankets over their shoulders and the water running under their feet.  After a year in California and accumulating about two thousand dollars worth of gold, he returned home by way of Panama. On the trip down the Pacific ocean, he was impressed with the fact that it was anything but a peaceful ocean. The stokers kept the pipes red hot and several times the vessel  took fire. In the storms the ship would crawl up an advancing wave for several hundred feet, to the top, and ahead of them there would be a trough in the water that seemed like a bottomless pit.  Down into this the ship would plunge and when it hit the bottom the water would sweep over the decks carrying away anything loose. Then around the vessel, the water would begin to boil and the ship would again begin its laborious climb up another wave.  Crossing the isthmus, he rode a Spanish mule in a path worn so deep that its banks were often as high as his shoulders, the verdure of the tropics was matted overhead so dense that it was fairly dark in places.

On arriving in Illinois, he and Alson J. Streeter, afterward Union Labor candidate for President of the United States, gathered together one hundred head of cows, and in 1852, drove them to California. This trip was made through the North Platte valley, on the north side of the river to Fort  Laramie. They had plenty of adventure, but no losses, and arrived at the golden mecca with more cattle than they started with, for some of the cows dropped calves, which were taken in the wagons and carried when they showed sign of fatigue.

On February 28, 1854, he was married to Lydia Jane Streeter, a sister of Alson J. Streeter. She was born at Rock Hill, New York, October 1, 1835, and removed to Lee county, Illinois, about the same time that the Shumways moved there from Pennsylvania.

Mr. Shumway went into mercantile business at Oxford, Henry county, Illinois and later retired to his farm adjoining the town. The old farm house where he lived, and which was burned recently, was the home for many years, and here the family of eleven children were born, three of whom died while quite young. Those who grew to maturity were Clara Grace, Roswell, George, Grant, Minnie  Mae, Alson and Mabel.

For about ten years S. B. Shumway served as county supervisor in Henry county, being elected as  an independent, he being an independent in politics, since the greenback days. He was once independent candidate for Congress. In 1886, he came to Banner county, then a part of Cheyenne county, and filed on a homestead. After the organization of the new county of Banner, he was elected county judge and served two years.

Mr. and Mrs. Shumway affiliated with the Congregational church in Illinois but there being none of that denomination here at that time, they attended Methodist services, and occasionally the Presbyterian. He was a Thirty-second degree Mason before coming west and was for many years  High Priest of the Chapter at Rio, Illinois.

Clara A., the eldest daughter came to Banner county, and filed upon a homestead in 1887. She was married to George B. Luft December 10, 1890. Mr. Luft was a pioneer merchant, and continued in business until his death at Scottsbluff. Clara Shumway was the first superintendent of public instruction in Banner county, being elected without opposition and served two terms. She has always been active in educational, mercantile, lodge; club and civic endeavor.

Grace F., who was inclined to literary pursuits, and prominent in the W. C. T. U. was married at Woodhull, Illinois to C. L. Burgess, and was killed by the accidental discharge of a revolver August 13, 1899.

Stephen Roswell, the oldest son except Gano, who died in infancy, was married to Mary E. Brown at Woodhull, Illinois, and has been engaged in mercantile pursuits for the greater part of his life. He now resides at Oklahoma City. He attended Monmouth college.

George O., who attended Knox College, was married to Lena Hoadley at Galesburg, and took up the practice of law. He was seven times mayor of Galesburg, and once candidate for lieutenant  governor of Illinois. He now resides in northern California.

Grant Lee, the writer of the history of western Nebraska, and Alson J. have sketches elsewhere in this volume.

Minnie Mae, now Mae Shumway Enderly, resides at Los Angeles, where her husband, Fred W., has mercantile interests. She is professionally an entertainer for chautauquas, singing, reading, and high class vaudeville.

Mabel (Raymond) is at Los Angeles, and is a student and practitioner of therapeutics, and active in civic affairs.

The ranch of nine hundred and sixty acres in Banner county was sold and Mr. and Mrs. Shumway moved to Gering, where he died August 5, 1897. Mrs. Shumway lived at Gering, Scottsbluff, and Los  Angeles, until October 22, 1904, when she died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Luft at Scottsbluff.

Source: History of Western Nebraska and Its People, Grant L. Shumway, Western Publishing and Engraving Co; 1921; vol III; p418-419


JAMES C. SINCLAIR, of Sinclair & Smith, dealer in hardware implements, etc. was born in Fayette County, Pa., in February, 1841, and was employed in stock raising. In April, 1861, he went to Henry County, Ill., where he followed the same business. On August 19, 1861, he enlisted in Company B, Thirty-seventh Illinois Infantry, until November, 1863, when he was discharged on account of disability. In May, 1868, he came to Franklin County, and was for two years employed in working on farms. He then rented land and followed farming and stock raising for about five years, after which he devoted his time to stock raising exclusively up to July, 1881. In February, 1882, he engaged in this business in company with C. A. Woodward, who sold out some months later to J.W. Smith, his present partner. They carry a stock of $5,000, and do the largest business in their line at this place.

Source: Cutler's History of the State of Kansas, 1883


DAVID W. SMALLEY, clerk, located in Kearney, Neb., September, 1878, and engaged in the dry goods and grocery business two years, then clerked for Stein & Kramer a year, then entered into his present employment for H. Willhelmy. He was born in Grafton, Windham Co., Vt., December 12, 1847. Was raised on a farm until he was twenty-one years old; he then engaged in various occupations, and finally located in Galva, Henry Co., Ill., and worked three years for his brother in the agricultural implement business. Opened a tobacco store on his own account a year, then into the livery business until he came to Kearney, Neb. He is a member of the K. of H. Lodge, No. 1335. Was City Treasurer a year. He was married, in Galva, Ill., August 3, 1869, to Miss Lizzie P. Washington, of the latter city. They have three children--Gracie D., Charlie W. and Warren R.

Source: Andreas' History of Nebraska 1883, Buffalo County, Town of Kearney


William H Smith, editor and publisher of the Seward Independent Democrat, at Seward, Nebraska, was born in Henry county, Illinois, in 1873, and is a son of William L. and Maria E. (Edwards) Smith, natives of Maryland and Illinois, respectively. The father was a farmer by occupation and removed to Illinois at the close of the Civil war, in which struggle he took part as a member of Company B, Second Iowa Volunteer Infantry, serving for four years. He participated in many battles and skirmishes, including the engagement at Shiloh, where he was wounded in the knee. He died in 1881. In the family were three sons, but our subject is the only one living in Nebraska.

William H. Smith was educated in the common schools of Iowa, and at the age of seventeen entered the office of the Tipton Conservative, of Tipton, Iowa, as devil, and there learned the art of printing, remaining in that office until March, 1897.

Coming to Seward, Nebraska, he then purchased the Seward County Democrat, and in June of the same year bought the Independent, consolidating the two under the present name of the Seward Independent Democrat. The Democrat was established in 1891 and the Independent in 1893, and both have often changed hands. The paper is now the organ of the Democratic and Populist parties of the county, and under the able management of our subject it has become a bright newsy sheet and very popular with the reading public. Mr. Smith takes quite an active and prominent part in political work, and is meeting with good success in the publication of his paper. Socially he belongs to the Knights of Pythias.

Source: Memorial and Biographical Record of Butler, Polk, Seward, York and Fillmore Counties Nebraska, p458


Andrew Soliday has been a resident in Henry County since 1854. He has lived in the township of  Yorktown since 1856. He was born in Alsace, then a province of France, since which time it fell into the possession of Germany in the late war between those powers. His birth occurred Jan. 7, 1830, and he is the son of Andrew and Margaret Soliday. His father died in his infancy, and as he was the only child his mother brought him up.

When he was six years old she came with him to America. She remained in Pennsylvania a few months after landing in the New World, and while there was married to Jacob Grose, a native of Rhenish Bavaria. In the February following, the new family went to Allegany County, in the State of New York, where the step-father died, five years later. The son and his mother remained there and in Livingston County until 1853. He was her sole dependence after the death of her second husband, and he was also the maintainer of two half-sisters, who were the children of the step-father. He worked as a farm assistant to obtain the means needed for the support of the household, and he worked by the day. In the year named he came West to see if he could discover any chance for a poor man to get along in the world, and he determined to make a trial of what he considered conditions that promised the reward of effort and frugality. He returned to New York, and in 1854 he came to Illinois with his mother and two sisters. He rented the farm of his uncle in the township of Loraine, on which he operated two years. He was successful in his efforts to save what he earned, and he took possession of the land which he had bought the year in which he came to the county. It was located on section 19 of the township of Yorktown, and he built a double hewed-log house, into which the family moved in the month of January, 1856. Mr. Soliday at once entered with characteristic vigor into the work of improvement, and he made telling progress with his old-country industry and thrift. He was the owner of a yoke of oxen and two  cows, and in a very short time he exchanged the former for horses and proceeded with his work of reclamation until he had placed the entire acreage under tillage. In 1864, he sold the place and secured another on section 31 of the same township. There was a small frame house on the place, which was the first residence erected in the township, and was built by Daniel Crist; and 50 acres had been put under the plow by him. Mr. Soliday is the proprietor of 276 acres, which is all in the best possible condition for successful agriculture, and supplied with the kind of farm buildings that show the quality of the efforts that have been exercised in Henry County, that have placed it in the ranks with those of older settlement in the State. Mr. Soliday is engaged in mixed husbandry.

In his political connection, he was at first a Whig. On the formation of the Republican party he became its adherent, and has been a consistent member of it ever since. He served as Assessor and as Highway Commissioner, and has also filled the positions of Constable, etc. He has acted 19 years in the capacity of School Director.

The marriage of Mr. Soliday to Mary Baker took place June 14, 1856. She was born in Warren Co., Pa. They have seven children: Mary Ellen married Henry Minch, of Yorktown Township; Jacob E., Andrew J., Esther E., Ida S., Hannah A. and Charles A. are those who are still at home.

The mother lived with her son as long as her life was spared after coming to Illinois. She died at his home, March 5, 1875. His oldest sister is named Elizabeth. Sophia married John Coplin, and they  removed to Denver, Col.

Source: Portrait and Biographical Album of Henry County, Illinois; Biographical Publishing Co.; Chicago;1885; Pages 293-294

Submitted by Suzanne Franck


Willian (sic) M. Spring, who has made his home in Butler county, Nebraska, since November, 1864, is not only one of the honored pioneers of this section of the state, but is also descended from good old Revolutionary stock, his ancestors having taken a prominent part in the early history of this country. He was born in New York city, in 1836, a son of Gardner and Susan (Barney) Spring, the former a native of Newburyport, Massachusetts, the latter of Connecticut. The father was a noted man and one of the leading Presbyterian ministers of his day. Our subject's paternal grandfather, John Spring, went as chaplain in Arnold's expedition to Quebec during the  Revolutionary war, and his maternal grandfather was Commodore Barney, of the United States navy.

Like his illustrious grandfather, our subject followed the sea from the age of twelve to  twenty-one, and as a sailor traveled all over the world. In 1857 he left the east and removed to Henry county, Illinois, where he subsequently married Miss Corinne Johnson, who died in Butler  county in 1896, leaving two children, Louis, now a Methodist minister stationed in California; and Alice, wife of Lofe Halstead. Since the death of his first wife Mr. Spring has married Harriet,  daughter of Lanson Franklin.

In 1864 Mr. Spring resolved to try his fortunes in the far west, and with ox teams drove across  the country from his home in Illinois, arriving in Butler county in November of that year, after being eight weeks upon the road. Here, he homesteaded eighty acres on section 26, Platte township, near  the village of Linwood, and has converted the place into one of the finest fruit farms in this region.

He is a keen, practical man, well gifted with mental and physical vigor, and the success that he has  achieved in life is due entirely to his own efforts. He was a charter member of the first  Congregational church organized in Butler county and has always taken an active and prominent  part in all church work. He possesses, to a full measure, all of the fine, ennobling qualities for which his ancestors were so noted, and his honesty, integrity,  gentleness and purity are a constant source of inspiration to his family and friends.

Source: Memorial and Biographical Record of Butler, Polk, Seward, York and Fillmore Counties Nebraska; Geo. A. Ogle & Co, Chicago 1899 p605-606

Charles W. Stackhouse

Submitted by Pamela Kellerstrass

Source: The source of this information is a typed copy of a handwritten biography of Charles W. Stackhouse written in September of 1904. The following is an exerpt of 4 typewritten pages of C.W. Stackhouse's hand-written journal. This exerpt was provided to our site by Pamela Kellerstrass, who promised us more from this biography at a later date.

"If a residence of fifty eight years entitles one to the honor of being one of the old settlers of Henry County, then I may be enrolled among that number.

"I first arrived in Cambridge in the summer of 1846. In the company with my father and three sisters, I left northern Pennsylvania. In June of that year journeying by way of the lakes, reaching Chicago in July whichat that time was a small town. As there was no other way of transportation to the country than by wagon we secured the services of a man and team to haul baggage and family to this locality. The country along the route was thinly settled, but the people were friendly and willing to accomodate travelers. We found the roads in fair condition and the trip was made in about a week reaching East Cambridge (or Sugar-Tree-Grove as it was called then) where my brother William Stackhouse was located. He settled there in 1840 having traveled out in the company with James Macall. The settlers at that time were located in and near the grove for convenience of timber and shelter; wood and cobs being the only material for fuel. Also in the groves were found an abundance of wild fruit, such as blackberries, plums, crabapples and grapes.

Wild game was plentiful. The hunter could go out and in a short time secure a supply of venison. Prairie chickens in the fall and winter were in such vast flocks as to be regarded as a nuisance in pillaging upon the ungathered corn.

I worked with my father at the chair business. In 1847-48 I taught school in district No. 2, called the middle district. That was the first school taught in that district. The house was an old dwellilng rudely fixed up with benches and desks in the side of the wall and a fireplace for heating. Here some 35 youngsters were enrolled to engage in the rudiments of an education. My salary was fifty cents a day and I boarded among the settlers. The Terrys, Talbotts, Grants and Montgomerys were nearby settlers and all having large families helped to make up a large portion of the attendance.

In the spring of 1852 I became acquainted with Miss Hanna Elm, We married Christmas 1852. She was Swedish and it was the first marriage between a Swede and an American in Henry County. Now in reviewing our experience as old settlers of Henry County we are thankful that we have lived to witness the wonderful achievements that have been reached by inventive genius.


Samuel Ringold Stanley  is a representative of the business interests of Stuart, Iowa, where he is successfully engaged in grain dealing. He is a wide-awake, enterprising man, sagacious and far-sighted, and Guthrie county numbers him among its valued citizens. The record of his life is as follows. He was born at Marion, Marion county, Ohio, August 6, 1836, and when a child of six years his parents removed to Rock Island, Illinois. They had previously lived in Indiana and Michigan, but eventually settled in Rock Island in 1842, at which time the city was but a hamlet containing not more than a dozen business houses and scarcely a greater number of residences. The country round was wild and uncultivated, and in this frontier settlement Mr. Stanley spent his boyhood days. On the paternal side he is of English ancestry, while his mother's people were of German lineage. His father, James G. Stanley, was born at sea. The grandfather was captain of an English merchantman, and the wife accompanied her husband on a number of his voyages. He and his crew, together with the ship and cargo, were lost at sea. James Stanley was reared in Maryland, and his wife, who bore the maiden name of Sarah Feigley, was there born in 1802. Their marriage was celebrated in the same State, whence they started on their Westward journey, living in several different localities in the Mississippi valley. The father died in Illinois, in October, 1853, at the age of sixty-seven years, but the mother is now living in Lawrence, Kansas, at the age of ninety-four years.

This worthy couple were the parents of nine children, five sons and four daughters, and all the sons served in the Union army at the same time. William was wounded at the battle of Chickamauga, and died from his injuries. Greer M. died in 1887 from disease contracted in the service. Mary Ann is the widow of Henry Stevens, and resides at Lawrence, Kansas. Susan is the widow of George A. Baker, and lives at Lisbon, South Dakota. Samuel R. is the next younger. Sarah is the wife of John Hohn, a resident of Illinois. John died of measles while in the army. Martha Jane is the wife of John A. Gray, of Wykoff, Minnesota. James P. is engaged in the lumber business in that State.

Mr. Stanley of this review continued his residence in Rock Island county, Illinois, during the greater part of the time until August 1, 1861, when at Geneseo, Illinois, he enrolled his name among the boys in blue. He had enlisted on the first call for three-months troops, but the quota was full ere the company was called forth to action, and it disbanded until the latter part of the summer. It was then sent to hold a post at Lexington, Missouri, and while there its members were taken prisoners by the rebel General Price. On being paroled they were sent to St. Louis, and were mustered out October 18, 1861. This company was independent of any State organization, though assigned to the Fourteenth Missouri Cavalry. After the discharge another company was immediately reorganized and went to Leavenworth, Kansas, where it was assigned to the Eighth Kansas Infantry, under command of Colonel John A. Martin, who afterward served for two years as Governor of that State. With the Twelfth and Thirteenth Wisconsin Regiments, the Fifty-first Illinois, and the Seventh Kansas, it formed a brigade under command of General R. B. Mitchell, and went from Leavenworth to Columbus, Kentucky, in June, 1862.

The nest move of this command took the troops to Corinth, Mississippi, after which they went with General Buell on his famous Kentucky campaign and participated in the battle of Perryville, returning to Nashville, November 1, 1862, when General Rosecrans took command of the Army of the Cumberland. The regiment to which our subject belonged was with the forces of General McCook as a part of the Twenty-first Army Corps, and went on the Tullahoma and Chickamauga campaigns, participating in all the engagements of these famous expeditions. They met the enemy at Chattanooga and Mission Ridge, and in the late fall of 1863 joined General Burnside at Knoxville, whence they were ordered to Dandridge, East Tennessee, but again returned to Knoxville. Mr. Stanley there re- enlisted as a veteran volunteer, and the old organization was retained. In the spring of 1864 he started on the Atlanta campaign under Sherman, and after the evacuation of the city of Atlanta the Eighth Kansas Infantry became a part of the Fourth Army Corps, and returned to Nashville under General Thomas, participating in the battles of Spring Hill and Nashville, the rebel forces being under command of General Bragg, who was threatening Sherman's rear. They followed Bragg into Alabama, and fought the battle of Franklin, November 30, and December 15 and 16 the battle of Nashville. They returned back into Alabama, and went into winter quarters at Huntsville, where they remained until March, 1865. They then returned to East Tennessee, and in May were ordered back to Nashville, where, on the 20th of June, an order came for the Fourth Corps to proceed by rail to Johnsonville, thence by steamer to New Orleans, and on the morning of July 5 they went aboard a ship bound for Matagorda bay. Thence they proceeded to Green Lake, where the remained a month, and at San Antonio, Texas, on the 28th of November, 1865, Mr. Stanley, with his regiment, was mustered out of the service. The troops had been sent to the South in order to watch Maximilian, who was then operating in Mexico. After being mustered out, Mr. Stanley then returned to Leavenworth, Kansas, where the troops were finally paid off and discharged, January 11, 1866. His service covered a period of four years, five months and eleven days. He can boast of holding at the present time four honorable discharges, the first by reason of being a paroled prisoner of war, the second to enable him to re-enlist as a veteran, the third to receive promotion as First Lieutenant of his company, and lastly because the war was over and his services were no longer needed. He filled all of the various official grades from private to Captain, was promoted to the First Lieutenancy in 1863, and was made Captain in 1864, commanding his company from that time forward until the close of the war. Meritorious conduct on the field of battle won him this honor and his military record is one of which he may justly be proud.

Mr. Stanley at once returned to his home in Illinois and engaged in farming for one year. In the fall of 1866 he came to Iowa, locating in Boone county, where he made his home for two years, and in March, 1869, arrived in Stuart. His arduous army service had made such inroads upon his health that he was unable to longer engage in agricultural pursuits or other manual labor, and for about six years after coming to Stuart he lived a retired life in consequence of his impaired health. At length he embarked in grain dealing, which he has followed almost continuously since, and has built up an excellent trade in this line, making large shipments.

On the 14th of February, 1866, was consummated the marriage of Mr. Stanley and Miss Ellen Smith, a daughter of George and Mary Smith, prosperous farming people of Henry county, Illinois. The lady was born April 4, 1844, in Ashland, Ohio, and there acquired her education. The wedding was celebrated in Geneseo, Illinois, and their union has been blessed with one child, Nellie M., now the wife of Alexander Turk, a resident of Tama, Iowa, by whom she has two children - Minnie R. and Mahlon S.

Mr. Stanley is a stanch and uncompromising Republican, who does all in his power to promote the interests of his party, but has never sought or held office. He is a member of Maxwell Post, No. 14, G. A. R., of which he has served for two terms as Commander. He joined this post on its organization. He also belongs to Stuart Lodge. No. 214, I. O. O. F., in which he has filled all the offices. His wife is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the Woman's Relief Corps. Mr. Stanley is a representative of a family noted for loyalty to the country, and in all the relations of life he displays the same fidelity to duty that he manifested when on Southern battle fields he followed the old flag.

Source: A Memorial and Biographical Record of Iowa, Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1896


John D. Steward, one of the early settlers of Deuel county and today one of the most successful and prosperous farmers of this section, was born in Henry county, Illinois, September 4, 1859, the son of Martin and Mary (Woodruff) Steward, natives of New York. The father was a farmer who came to Illinois and at the outbreak of the Civil War oluntered (sic) serving in the One Hundred and Twelfth Illinois Infantry from 1861 to 1864. In 1884, Mr. Steward came to Nebraska, locating in Dawson county, then homesteaded five miles northwest of Big Springs, where the family lived until  his death. Mrs. Stewart later sold that place and took a homestead as a widow; proved up but later    married a minister from Iowa, I. M. Flyng, and now lives in Chappell. There were eight children in the family, of whom five are living, but John, of this sketch, is the only one in Deuel county. Mrs. Steward was a member of the Methodist church, while her husband was a Republican in politics.

John Steward was educated in the public schools of Illinois and was married in Bureau county, that state, on December 17, 1882, to Miss Sarah M. Estabrook the daughter of David and Mary (Ferrell) Eestabrook (sic), both New Englanders by birth. Ten children were born to this union, of whom seven are living: Alice, the wife of Frank Thomas of Lexington, Nebraska; Blanche, the wife  of Loren D. Root, of Sedgwick, Colorado; Jesse, deceased; Archie, who lives on the home farm; Gertrude, the wife of John Ford, of Big Springs; Pearl, deceased; Clarence L., at home; Ruba, Ruth  and David M.

Mr. Steward came to Deuel county county in 1884, and took a claim, the northwest quarter of  section 34-15-43 which he sold in 1903, and bought the land where he now lives, as he foresaw the  great future of irrigated land and purchased what could be watered. Since that time he has been  engaged in general farming and stock raising. Mr. Steward is a self-made man, having had little  when he came into the Panhandle but the determination to succeed; for at that time it was necessary to haul wood from the canyons of the Platte. He was near the famous California Trail and saw the early prairie schooners let down the steep hills with windlasses. One year he worked his land with an ox team, then purchased a pony horse team but today has the most modern machinery obtainable. Mr. Steward has specialized of late years in the breeding of full blooded Belgian horses,  in which line he has met with gratifying success. He is a Republican, has served as assessor and road  overseer of his district and is one of the substantial men of his community.

Source: History of Western Nebraska and Its People, Grant L. Shumway, Western Publishing and Engraving Co; 1921; vol III p508-509


Among the enterprising and energetic young farmers of Kewanee Township is the subject of this sketch, who was born here Oct. 29, 1851, and is a son of Jarius and Nancy (Dingman) Storey, who were early pioneers in this county, a sketch of whom may be seen elsewhere in this volume.

Elijah received the advantages afforded by the district schools, and remained at home until he attained the age of 21 years. At that age he was united in marriage with Miss Lavina McClellan, the event being celebrated on the 27th of February, 1872. She was born in Kendall Co., Sept. 19, 1852. Her mother is deceased.

After marriage our subject settled on section 5, where he has since resided, and is the proprietor of an excellent farm of 85 acres, all of which he has, by his industry and hard labor, brought into a good state of cultivation, to-day being one of the best farms in his township. Mr. and Mrs. Storey have had born to them five children to bless their home circle; but the eldest, Nellie, died when but a year and 12 days old. The living are: Jarius L., Clarence E., Ada and Ida (twins).

In politics, Mr. Storey affiliates with the Republican party.

Source: Portrait and Biographical Album of Henry County, Illinois; Biographical Publishing Co.; Chicago; 1885; Page 649

Submitted by Suzanne Franck


The stock raising interests of Henry county find in Mr. Storey a worthy representative. He has owned some of the most noted animals in this section of the state, and in his chosen line of occupation has been eminently successful. He was born in Kewanee on the 29th of October, 1851, and belongs to one of the honored pioneer families of the county. His father, Jarius Storey, was born in Oneida county, New York, March 18, 1828, and attended the common schools of that locality. At the age of twelve years he removed to Canada with his parents, Elijah and Louise (Wheeler) Storey, also natives of Oneida county, New York. While in Canada the father of our subject worked for a man who was in the employ of the English government as Indian agent and trader, and remained with him until seventeen years of age. Two years later he came with his parents to Illinois, reaching Kewanee on the 23rd of July, 1847. Here his father died in 1850 and his mother passed away soon afterwards. Her parents were natives of Dutchess county, New York, and spent their lives in that state. The paternal great-grandparents of our subject were also born in this country.

On coming to Henry county, Jurius Storey, entered forty acres of land on section 4, Kewanee township, and later entered two other forty-acre tracts. At that time there was not a single building on the present site of Kewanee, it being covered with tall prairie grass. A few Indians were still encamped here and deer and other wild game was plentiful. About four times a year Mr. Storey would go either to Peru or LaSalle, on the Illinois river, to obtain provisions, these being the nearest market places at that time. In those early days he cut all his grain with a cradle and threshed it with a flail. Throughout life he has successfully engaged in farming and is still living on the land which he entered from the government. He was married in Kewanee, in 1850, to Miss Nancy Dingman, who was born in Canada, and came to this county with her parents in 1849. They were also natives of that country and had eleven children, of whom Mrs. Storey was seventh in order of birth. The others were as follows:  (1) Mary, wedded James Bradford, a blacksmith of Annawan, who during the Civil war enlisted in the One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Illinois Regiment, but was confined in the hospital at Indianapolis during the most of his service. He and his wife died, leaving three children, Lucy, Lovina, and Josephus.  (2) David, a farmer by occupation, married Mary Showers, of Kewanee, and moved to Kansas, where both died, leaving a family.  (3) William married a Miss Hodge, and they died, leaving four children, who are residents of Dayton, Iowa.  (4) Joseph married Jane Rockey and lived in Kewanee when the Civil war broke out. In 1864 he enlisted in the One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Illinois Infantry, and was wounded during Morgan’s raid. After the war he removed to Kansas, where he followed farming until his death. He left three children.  (5) Jennette married George Minord and they died, leaving nine children, who reside in Iowa.  (6) Margaret wedded George Mesker, and at their deaths they left four children, Merritt, Hattie, Elizabeth and George, residents of Kewanee.  (7) Nancy was the mother of our subject.  (8) Eliza married James McNeal and they died, leaving two children, William and John, of Alba township.  (9) James and his wife died in Iowa leaving no family.  (10) Lawrence was married in Abingdon, Illinois, and at his death left a family. He was a contractor and was killed in the erection of a building.  (11) Frank enlisted in 1861 in Company I, Twenty-seventh Illinois Infantry, was wounded in the battles of Lookout Mountain and Chattanooga, and was mustered out in 1865. He was first married Hattie Aikens and, second, Ella Kelsey, and with his family now resides in Iowa. Mrs. Nancy Storey, who was a consistent member of the Baptist Church, died December 30, 1865, and was buried on the 1st of January, 1866. Elijah, our subject, was the oldest of her seven children. David L., born in 1853, died at the age of eleven years; Josephus died at the age of four months; and three died in infancy. Jane, who was born in 1861, is the wife of Geoge Ditto, of Keithsburg, Iowa, and they have three children living, Dora, Jarius and Laura Pearl, and one deceased, Ray. The father was again married April 25, 1867, his second union being with Elizabeth Swyhart, whose parents were natives of Ohio. By this union two children were born, but the older died at the age of two months. Tessa, born October 4, 1872, is with her parents. Since casting his first presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln, he has been identified with the Republican party, and has served as overseer of highways and school director for a number of years, but has never sought office. He is one of the honored and highly respected citizens of his community.

Since attaining man’s estate Elijah Storey, of this review, has engaged in farming and stock raising and now successfully operates eighty-five acres of land, but he gives especial attention to the other branch of his business and is to-day one of the most extensive stock raisers of Illinois. The first colt he raised won first premium at Cambridge in 1876 and afterward won premiums wherever shown for the four years. He owned the French draft horse, Sultan, who was also shown at four county fairs and won first and sweepstakes at each exhibition, and won first prize for two successive years at the Illinois state fair. He was then sold to a party in Iowa. His next horse, Arimus, a Percheron, won twenty-four first prizes in Henry county, and also won prizes at the state fairs. He now owns a French coach stallion, Urbin, which won first premium and a gold medal in his class at the World’s fair in 1893. Mr. Storey owned the celebrated horse, Voltaire, also a prize winner, being considered the best horse in his class in the state.  He is now engaged in breeding Percheron, Clydesdale and French coach horses, and also registered cattle and hogs. He thoroughly understands his business, and the success that has crowned his well-directed efforts is certainly justly merited.

On the 27th of February, 1872, Mr. Storey was united in marriage with Miss Lavina McClennan, who was born in Kendall county, Illinois, September 23, 1852, a daughter of David and Resinda (Call) McClennan. Her father was born in Niagara county, New York, September 5, 1820, and came to Henry county, Illinois, in 1855, locating first in Annawan, and later removing to Alba township. He died December 9, 1898. His wife, who was born in Canada, November 2, 1826, died December 29, 1860. They were married August 29, 1844, and became the parents of four children, namely: George, the eldest, died in infancy. John married Retta Blake and lived for a time in Alba township, and then removed to Iowa, where she died. Of their four children, two are now deceased. For his second wife he married Mrs. Sabina Benson, and they now live in Ruthven, Palo Alto county, Iowa. Lavina is the wife of our subject. Ella married George Andrews, who died November 9, 1899, and she has since married Chris Jorgensen, of Pipestone, Minnesota. To Mr. and Mrs. Storey were born five children, namely: Nellie, born September 19, 1874, died October 5, 1875: Jarius L., born July 12, 1876, Clarence L., born October 7, 1882, are all at home, with exception of Ida, who stays with her grandparents much of the time, being a great favorite with them. Politically Mr. Storey is a stanch supporter of the Republican party, and religiously is an active and prominent member of the United Brethren Church, and is now serving as trustee and steward of the parsonage and church

Source: The Biographical Record of Henry County, Illinois; The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company; Chicago; 1901; Page 392-394

Submitted by Suzanne Franck


One of the prominent men of Henry county, who has won distinction in the stock-raising business and through the exhibition of numerous prize horses, is Elijah Storey, of Kewanee. He was born in this city, October 29, 1851, a descendant of one of the respected pioneer families of the county. His father, Jarius Storey, was a native of Oneida county, New York, where his birth occurred March 18, 1828. He attended the common schools of that locality until his twelfth year, when with his parents, Elijah and Louise (Wheeler) Storey also natives of Oneida county, he removed to Canada. There he worked for a man who was in the employ of the English government as Indian agent and trader, remaining with him for about five years. Two years later, when he was nineteen years old, he came alone to Illinois, reaching Kewanee on the June 18, 1847. His father died about three years after his arrival here and his mother did not long survive. Her parents were natives of Dutchess county, New York, which was their home throughout life.

Upon coming to Henry county Jarius Storey, who was just entering the period of his manhood, obtained forty acres of land on section 4, Kewanee township, and later acquired two other forty-acre tracts from the government. It was an entirely wild country that met the gaze of the pioneers at that day. Then there was not a single building on the present site of the city, the country being covered with tall prairie grass, while Indians were still not infrequently seen and deer and other wild game abounded. The nearest market in those days was either Peru or LaSalle on the Illinois river, and about four times a year Mr. Storey would go to one of these places to obtain provisions to last for months. Nor were those journeys the only hardships, for in those days before the invention of many farming implements, Mr. Storey was compelled to cut his grain with a cradle and thresh it with a flail. Nevertheless, he engaged in agriculture with pronounced success throughout his active life, making his home on the land which he entered from the government. He has now retired and lives on North Lexington avenue, Kewanee.

In 1850 Jarius Storey wedded Miss Nancy Dingman, who was born in Canada and came to this county with her parents but the year before her marriage. She was seventh in a family of eleven children. Mary became the wife of James Bradford, a blacksmith of Annawan, who during the Civil war enlisted in the One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry. As he was confined to the hospital during the greater part of his services he saw little active warfare. He and his wife have both died but are survived by three children, Lucy, Lovina, and Josephus. David married Mary Showers, of Kewanee, and removed to Kansas, where he pursued farming. He and his wife have also died, leaving a family. William married Miss Hodge and they are survived by four children, who are residents of Dayton, Iowa. Joseph wedded Jane Rockey and made his home in Kewanee until the outbreak of the Civil war. In 1864 he enlisted in the One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Illinois Infantry and after being discharged removed to Kansas, where he engaged in farming until his death. He is survived by three children.  Jennette became the wife of George Minord. They have both died and are survived by nine children who are living in Iowa. Margaret wedded George Mesker. They died, leaving four children, Merritt, Hattie, Elizabeth and George, who live in Kewanee. Nancy became the wife of Jarius Storey and the mother of our subject. Eliza married James McNeal. They, too, have passed away, leaving two children, William and John, of Alba township. James and his wife died in Iowa. Lawrence also married and lived in Abingdon, Illinois, where he was killed during the erection of a building. He left a family. Frank enlisted in 1861 in Company I, Twenty-seventh Illinois Infantry, was wounded in the battles of Lookout Mountain and Chattanooga, and was mustered out in 1865. He was twice married and now with his family resides in Iowa.

Mrs. Nancy Storey died December 30, 1865. She was the mother of seven children.  Elijah, our subject, is the eldest. David L., born in 1853, died at the age of eleven. Josephine was only four months old when she passed away. Three others died in infancy. Jane, who was born in 1861, became the wife of Geoge Ditto and now lives in Canyon City, Texas, where they are rearing their three children, Dora, Jarius and Laura Pearl. Jarius Storey was again married April 25, 1867, his second union being with Mrs. Elizabeth Swyhart. Two children were born of this union. The older died at the age of two months, and Tessa, whose birth occurred October 4, 1872, is with the wife of Fred Riley, who is in charge of one of the departments of the National Tube Company of Kewanee. He at one time owned Urbin, which is now in the possession of his brother-in-law, Elijah Storey. Mr. Storey has always been identified with the republican party, having cast his first ballot for Abraham Lincoln, and has been prominent in local affairs, having served as overseer of highways and as school director. He enjoys a high reputation among the citizens of Kewanee and surrounding country.

Reared to the life of a farmer, Elijah Storey has followed it as his vocation, but while he tills with success a tract of land in Kewanee township his especial attention is devoted to the stock business. In this he has achieved such success that he is accounted one of the important stock raisers in Illinois. Almost from the very beginning his horses have won distinction, his first colt having received the first premium at Cambridge in 1876. He owned the French draft horse, Sultan, which won many prizes and sweepstakes every time he was exhibited during the years he was in Mr. Storey’s possession. Arimus, a Percheron, his next horse, won twenty-four first prizes in Henry county, besides obtaining prizes at various state fairs. Urbin, a French coach stallion, which is now in his possession, won a gold medal at the World’s fair in 1893. Another celebrated horse, Voltaire, which was considered the best of its class in the state, was also in Mr. Storey’s stables.  It is to the breeding of Percheron, Clydesdale and French coach horses and of registered cattle and hogs that he has given his attention and is recognized even beyond the boundaries of Henry county as a man who is cognizant with every detail of this important business.

It was on the 27th of February, 1872, that the marriage of Mr. Storey and Miss Lavina McClennan was celebrated. She was born in Kendall county, Illinois, September 23, 1852, and is a daughter of David and Resinda (Call) McClennan. Her father, who is a native of Niagara county, New York, where his birth occurred September 5, 1820, came to Henry county, Illinois, in 1855. He first settled in Annawan, but later moved to Alba township, where he died December 9, 1898. His wife, who was born in Canada, November 2, 1826, preceded him to the grave many years, for her death occurred December 29, 1860. Through their marriage, which had been solemnized August 29, 1844, they became the parents of four children: George, who died in infancy; John, who married Retta Blake and after her death wedded Miss Sabina Benson and now lives in Ruthven, Palo Alto county, Iowa; Lavina is the wife of Mr. Storey; and Ella, who married George Andrews and after his death married Chris Jorgensen, of Pipestone, Minnesota.

Mr. and Mrs. Storey are the parents of five children. Nellie, born September 19, 1874, died October 5, 1875. Jarius L., born July 12, 1876, and Clarence L., born October 7, 1882, are at home. Ida is the wife of William Bing, a farmer of Kewanee, and they have four children. Ada, a twin sister of Ida’s, married James Gash, a farmer of Annawan township.

Mr. Stone has been a stanch supporter of the republican party and has been very active in its affairs in this county for during the past six years he has been the township’s representative on the central committee and has served as judge of election on several occasions. He is also assistant supervisor of the township, now serving his fourth term. It is to be remarked, however, that when his name was first placed upon the ticket as a candidate for the office he received the largest majority of votes ever polled in his township. As president of the Kewanee Agricultural Fair, of which he has also been director during the last six years, and as director of the Henry County Telephone Company he has shown a most trustworthy interest in advancing the welfare of the community. He is equally prominent in the church of the United Brethren, for he was president of its board of trustees, and upon his shoulders devolves the care of the parsonage. In short, while he has given his first attention to his private concerns with a success that has already been specified, he has not cramped his interests by confining them to few matters. On the contrary, his breadth of sympathies and his broad viewpoint are among the many things that make him such an esteemed citizen of the city, the township and the county.

Source: History of Henry County, Illinois; Henry L. Kiner; The Pioneer Publishing Company; Chicago; 1910; p 512-517

Submitted by Suzanne Franck


Jarius Storey, engaged as a farmer on section 4, Kewanee Township, was born in Oneida Co., N. Y., on the 18th of March, 1828. In 1847 he came West and located in Kewanee Township, this county, where he made a purchase of land, upon which he began the task of its improvement and cultivation and has to day 125 acres of valuable land.

He was married in this county on the 14th of January, 1851, the lady whom he chose to be his companion in life being Miss Nancy Dingman, a native of Canada. She has borne her husband four children, as follows: Elijah, Larmer, Jane and Josephine. (See sketch of Elijah elsewhere in this Album) Mrs. Storey died Jan. 31, 1867, and Mr. S. formed a second matrimonial alliance April 25, 1867, with Elizabeth Schwyhart, who was born in Ohio, June 21, 1843. Of the late union has been born one child, Tessa.

Politically, Mr. S is identified with the Republican party, and he has served his township as School Director.

Source: Portrait and Biographical Album of Henry County, Illinois; Biographical Publishing Co.; Chicago; 1885; Page 672

Submitted Suzanne Franck


SWANSON, Alfred, dealer in grain and lumber; born in Sweden in the province of Smaland, September 12, 1841. At the age of twelve he emigrated to this country, landing in the year 1853. He first stopped in Mercer County, Illinois, near New Boston, and worked on a farm by the month.

In September, 1861, he enlisted in the army, Forty-third Illinois regiment infantry, and served until 1864, when he was mustered out at Little Rock, Arkansas. H was in the battles of Shiloh, Corinth, Ft. Donelson, Fort Henry, Vicksburg and Little Rock.

He returned from the army to Henry County, Illinois, and engaged in farming. In 1871 he moved to Montgomery County, Iowa, and farmed for two years; in 1873 moved to Stanton and began the grain and lumber business, which he still continues. In 1876 he was elected township trustee, and in 1879 was elected county supervisor and still continues in that office. Mr. Swanson is rightly a leader among his own countrymen.

He is a man of unimpeachable character and a true Christian gentleman, respected by all who are acquainted with him. Mr. Swanson owns an elevator at Stanton and also one in Nebraska. He was married in Andover, Henry County Illinois, March 18, 1865, to Edna Sundberg, a native of Sweden; she was born January 6, 1842. They have eight children: Almida E., born July 24, 1866; Frank V., December 11, 1868; Alice, October 3, 1870; Hilda, October 9, 1872; Edward, March 3, 1874; Oscar, June 11, 1875; Charles A., June 6, 1877; Josef E., September 30, 1879.

Source: History of Montgomery County Iowa, 1881 Scott Twp.


SWANSON, N. P. Section 35; born in Sweden in the year 1830. Came to America in 1864, locating at Andover, Illinois. In 1871 came to Page county. Was married in 1855, to Miss Eva Louise, a native of Sweden. They are the parents of nine children: Charles E., Mary L., Nelson A., Oscar, Hilda, Henry, Anna, Elick, and Elizabeth. Owns 360 acres.

Source: History of Page County, Iowa, Des Moines: Iowa Hist. Co., 1880:p 647 Douglas Twp


SWANSON, S. W., Section 5, born in Sweden in the province of Smaland, April 2, 1849; followed farming.  He came to America July 3, 1866, first locating in Andover, Illinois, and remained there for four years, working by the month. In 1870 came to this county with $300 in money. He is now the owner of a fine farm, well improved. He was married to Miss Helena Palmquist, March 26, 1876. They have one son: Arnet N., born April, 1877; one daughter, Edith E., born December 12, 1880. Mr. and Mrs. Swanson are both members of the Swedish church.

Source: History of Montgomery County Iowa, 1881 Scott Twp.


ANDREW SWENSON, firm of Swenson Bros., dealers in a general line of drugs; opened the business in May, 1880. They carry a stock of $4,500 to supply their trade. Mr. S. first located in Batavia, Kane Co., Ill., in the spring, of 1870, then went to Chicago, Ill., three years in the wholesale clothing business; then to Moline, Ill., and engaged in the dry goods and clothing business three years; then to Cambridge, Ill., and engaged in the drug business until he settled in Kearney, Neb. He was born in Sweden October 31, 1845; came to America in 1870. He served two years in the Swedish Army.

Source: Andreas' History of Nebraska 1883, Buffalo County, Town of Kearney