Wilbur Fiske Stone.

History of Colorado; (Volume 4) online

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blacksmith by trade, then devoted his time and attention to the development and
improvement of that place until his demise and he is still survived by his widow, who
is living in Colorado at the age of seventy-five years. Their family numbered nine
children and eight of the number survive.

Elmer E. Schofield was reared in the Sunflower state and acquired his education
in its public schools. He afterward learned the blacksmith's trade under his father
and continued to follow that pursuit until he reached the age of twenty-four years,
when he took up farming on his own account in Boulder county. He afterward pur-
chased the farm on which he now resides, comprising one hundred and sixty acres of
excellent land, all of which is well irrigated, and by reason of its careful cultivation
he now gathers good crops and is winning substantial success as the years pass.
He not only cultivates the fields but is also raising stock and this branch of his
business is likewise proving profitable. Moreover, he has become known in financial
circles as one of the directors of the First National Bank of Lafayette. He also is
secretary and treasurer of the new Lafayette Farmers Union Elevator Company, an
organization which is proving of the greatest benefit to its stockholders. Mr. Schofield
also has two places in the mountains as "forest lease." about twenty miles from his
home place, where he raises cattle. On his home place he has been particularly suc-
cessful in the raising of sugar beets, having become well known as an expert grower
of this crop, and in 1919 will have thirty acres planted to beets. Furthermore, he has
a considerable area of his place devoted to hay as well as grain and com. His home
ranch lies in one of the best farming districts in the state. Besides his farming and
other activities Mr. Schofield is also successfully engaged in real estate dealing and has
built up a considerable business in his home neighborhood but also has concluded many
deals in Loveland, Berthoud and the Lone Tree district. Formerly he owned a tract of
valuable land northeast of Greeley, Colorado.

In 1892 Mr. Schofield was married to Miss Emma L. Prince, who for several years
was vice president of the First National Bank of Lafayette. They have become parents
of two children. Ruth V., the daughter, attended high school and the musical depart-


ment of the University of Denver and is now the wife of William R. Thomas, a pros-
perous farmer and a horseman of note, living in Boulder county. The son, Hiram E.,
is a graduate of the high school and is associated with his father in the operation and
further development of the farms. He also is married. Both of the children are
talented musicians who have not only acquired a thorough technique and shown more
than ordinary ability but have that true understanding and conception of compositions
that their authors intended to convey. It is therefore but natural that their interpreta-
tions inspired by an inborn musicianship are acclaimed by all those who have had the
pleasure of listening to them.

Mr. Schofield votes with the republican party and is conversant with the leading
questions and issues of the day but has never sought public office, preferring to give
his sole attention to private activities. At one time, however, he was persuaded, several
years ago, to become a candidate for county commissioner on the progressive ticket.
Throughout the war he efficiently served at a personal sacrifice as chairman of his
district. No. 5. known as the Davidson district, and did valuable work for his country
in this connection. Mrs. Schofield is chairman and president of the Red Cross organi-
zation of the same district and both she and her husband have done earnest work along
Red Cross lines and in fact have liberally contributed to all war organizations, thus
assisting in winning the conflict. Giving the first place in their hearts to their coun-
try, they have displayed an unquestioned and ardent patriotism and in every sense
have "done their bit."


Fred Knaus, a farmer and stockraiser of Boulder county, is numbered among the
native sons of Colorado. He was born February 19, 1886, his parents being Clemens
and Eliza Knaus. His youthful days were passed in Boulder county, where he pursued
his education, and after completing a course in the public schools he pursued the study
of pharmacy and devoted eight years to the drug business. He then became actively
connected with agricultural interests, purchasing the farm whereon he now resides.
He is the owner of two hundred and thirty acres of excellent land and derives a
substantial income as the result of the care and labor which he bestows. upon the
fields. He is systematic and thorough in the cultivation of the land and follows progres-
sive methods in the production of his crops.

In 1914 Mr. Knaus was united in marriage to Miss Mildred Dodd. a daughter of
Harvey and Mary (Dawson) Dodd, who are natives of Colorado and are still living in
Boulder county. To Mr. and Mrs. Knaus has been born a daughter, Dorothy Dawn.
The parents attend the United Brethren church and in politics Mr. Knaus is a demo-
crat, but the honors and emoluments of office have never had attraction for him. He
is a member of the Masonic lodge at Longmont and in his life exemplifies the benefi-
cent spirit of the craft. In fact his career is guided by high and honorable principles
at all times and his sterling worth of character is recognized by all with whom he
comes in contact.


Mrs. Mattie M. Howell is a representative of one of the pioneer families of Colo-
rado. She was born in Boulder county, her parents being Peter A. and Maria A.
(Duck) Leyner, mentioned at greater length elsewhere in this work.

It was amid pioneer surroundings that the family were reared, sharing in the
hardships and privations of pioneer life and in the subsequent progress and pros-
perity which came to many of the settlers of the county. In December. 1881, Mattie
M. Leyner became the wife of M. L. Howell. She has three children: Nora S.. the*
wife of J. A. Huber, now living in Denver; Leyner, also of Denver; and Harry E.,
who is upon the farm with his mother.

Mrs. Howell is the owner of two hundred and eighty acres of rich and productive
land, all of which is irrigated. She personally directs the management and operation
of the farm and in addition to cultivating the fields is engaged in stock raising. In
1918 she had one hundred and five acres of land planted to sugar beets, which yielded
about twenty tons to the acre. She also had twelve acres planted to cabbage in 1918
which netted her forty-eight hundred dollars. She has broad alfalfa fields upon the



ranch and cuts a large amount of hay annually, and has raised both cattle and reg-
istered Percheron horses. Mrs. Howell is one of the directors of the Leyner Cotton-
wood Consolidated Ditch Company. She possesses splendid business judgment and
executive ability and has made her property one of the valuable farms of Boulder
county. Everything about the place is indicative of careful supervision and progres-
siveness, and neatness and thrift characterize the farm in every particular. Mrs.
Howell has lived to see remarkable changes in the county during the long years of
her residence here. During her girlhood days there was still much land that was
unclaimed and undeveloped, but all this has been taken up and the greater part
of the acreage has been transformed into productive fields, while along all lines the
work of progress and improvement has been carried steadily forward, making this
one of the prosperous and populous counties of the state.

Mrs. Howell is a valued member of the Eastern Star, the Royal Neighbors and the
Farmers Union, and has served as committee woman of Precinct No. 6 for several
years, thus giving evidence of the helpful interest which she takes in the growth and
upbuilding of her community along various lines.


While the state of Colorado has existence the name of Otto Mears will be an
honored one within its borders because of the important part which he has played
in its development. He has penetrated into its mountain fastnesses and broken paths
across its plains. As a builder of toll roads and railroads he has contributed in
marked measure to the task of opening up the state for settlement and he is most
appropriately called the pathfinder of the San Juan. Now, in the evening of his days,
he is making his home in Denver, having passed the seventy-eighth milestone on
life's journey. The worth of his work can scarcely be overestimated and as time gives
the perspective which places each individual in his true position, the passing years will
serve to heighten his fame and intrench him more firmly as one of the empire builders
of Colorado and the west. It will be a surprise to many, knowing what he has
accomplished for Colorado, to learn that he is or foreign birth. A native of Russia,
his natal day was May 3, 1840, but he was a lad of only twelve years when he accom-
panied his parents to the new world, spending his youthful days in San Francisco.
In 1S61, when twenty-one years of age, he responded to the country's call for three
years' troops to serve in the Civil war and became a member of Company H of the
First California Volunteers. During a part of his service he was with Kit Carson
in the Navajo war and was honorably discharged in. the Messilla valley at the close
of his term of enlistment in 1864.

It was then that Mr. Mears accepted a clerkship with the firm of Elsbert & Amberg
at Santa Pe and later he obtained a position in the retail store of Staab Brothers.
He was constantly alert to the opportunities of the west and after making extended
explorations through New Mexico and Arizona he came to Colorado in 1865 and estab-
lished a general merchandise business in the old town of Conejos, at which time the
county embraced what are now the counties of Conejos. Rio Grande, Mineral, Saguache,
Hinsdale, Ouray, San Miguel, Dolores, Montezuma and Archuleta. Aside from conduct-
ing his store Mr. Mears formed a partnership with Major Head in the establishment
and conduct of a sawmill and a grist mill. No nails were to be obtained in that
locality at the time, so that the timbers were mortised and held together by wooden
pins. He had to pay eighty dollars a thousand for his lumber and his grist brought
twenty dollars a hundred for flour. Mr. Mears proved the pioneer in introducing many
improvements into his section of the state. Tt was he who in 1867 took the first mower,
reaper and threshing machine into the San Luis valley, and in order that he faciliate
the work of reaching the market with his wheat and other products he built a road
from Poncha Pass to the Arkansas valley, this constituting the initial step in the
Mears system of toll roads in the San Juan.

As a road builder Mr. Mears became a most active factor in the development
and upbuilding of the state. He opened up many highways which have been of the
greatest benefit. In 1871, associated with Enos Hotchkiss, he organized a company
to build a wagon road from Saguache to Howardsville, in San Juan county, across
Cochetopa pass to CeboUa valley and thence to the Lake Fork of the Gunnison. Realiz-
ing the fertility of the district and the possibilities for profitable development here,
he established the Saguache Chronicle to advertise the resources of the valley and in
the following year he incorporated the town of Lake City and founded the Weekly


Silver World. The first Issue of that paper gave an account of the mineral resources
of the San Juan region and miners and prospectors rushed to that section of Colorado.

It seems that no phase of Mr. Mears' intensely active business life was without
its attendant public benefit. In 1873 he was visited by Mr. Bruner, of Pittsburgh, who
had been appointed commissioner to treat with the Ute Indians tor a part of the land
of San Juan. Ouray, San Miguel and Dolores counties. Mr. Bruner failed in his
efforts to secure a removal of the Utes, whereupon Mr. Mears acted as interpreter at a
meeting that was held with the Indians and brought about the signing of the treaty
by which the Utes were to receive the interest on five hundred thousand dollars. When
this was accomplished Mr. Mears began the building of roads through the mountains,
his labors resulting in the building of about three hundred miles of what became
known as the Mears system of toll roads. It was natural that a man of his prominence
and activity should be called upon for public service and in 1S76 he was made presi-
dential elector from Colorado. While in Washington he induced the postofflce depart-
ment to establish a mail route through Uncompahgre agency and Ouray county and the
contract therefor was awarded him. There were times when, braving the fierce weather
of the San Juan region, he broke the trails for the mail service himself. He was also
one of those who assisted in the rescue of Mrs. Meeker, Mrs. Price and Josephine
Meeker, following the Meeker massacre, and he took eleven Indians to Washington,
acting as their interpreter, and while en route he conveyed Chief Douglas to Fort
Leavenworth. Following his arrival in the national capital he was appointed one of
five commissioners to make a new treaty with the Utes for eleven million acres of
land, covering Montrose, Delta and Mesa counties. The red men claimed that the
government did not keep its promises and demanded cash. Mr. Mears, knowing the
mental attitude of the Indians, paid them two dollars each and they signed the treaty,
after which Commissioners Mannypenny of Ohio and Meachem of Washington filed
charges against him, alleging that he had bribed the red men. Secretary Schurz of
the interior department took up the matter, which was afterward dismissed by his
successor. Secretary Kirkwood, to whom Mr. Mears explained that the Utes would
rather have two dollars in cash than the promised interest on one million, eight hun-
dred thousand dollars, and under Mr. Kirkwood's orders Mr. Mears was refunded the
twenty-eight hundred dollars which he had paid to the Indians.

Never throughout the period of pioneer development in Colorado did he cease his
efforts to aid in the upbuilding of the state. He built toll roads in San Juan county
and over Marshall pass and was the builder of the railroad through the beautiful
mountain district from Silverton to Red Mountain and Ironton. He was likewise
the builder of the Silverton Northern Road from Silverton to Eureka and Animas
Forks, with a branch up Cunningham gulch. He was the builder of the Rio Grande
Southern from Ridgway to Durango, connecting at both ends with the Denver &
Rio Grande. No other man has done so much for the development of the San Juan/
region and the influence and effect of his labors cannot be overestimated.

For many years, covering more than two decades, Mr. Mears has served on the
board of capitol managers, and he was one of those who selected the granite quarries
in Gunnison county to furnish building stone for the capitol, which is regarded as
one of the most beautiful public buildings in the world. A recognition of the value
of his public service is found in the senate chamber of the state house, where his
portrait appears in one of the stained glass windows. He has never sought to fill
political positions, content to do his public service as a private citizen. His keen
sagacity enabled him to readily recognize opportunities and pass upon the value
of the natural resources of the state. The chance for development touched a respon-
sive chord in him, as progress has ever been his watchword. He has builded not
alone for the present but for the future and as long as Colorado stands she must ac-
knowledge her indebtedness to him as one of her promoters.


More than a third of a century has passed since William A. Wood came to Col-
orado, for the year 1S84 witnessed his arrival in this state. He has made his home
since 1892 in Boulder county, where he is now engaged in general farming and stock
raising. He was born in Virginia. January 6, 1866. a son of Stephen and Mary (Burke)
Wood, who were natives of Ireland and came to America in early life, continuing
resident of this country until called to the home beyond. They had a family of eight
children, six of whom are living.
Vol. rv— 41


William A. Wood was reared and educated in Virginia, where he resided until
1884, when he came to Colorado, after which he worked for a number of years as
a common laborer. He carefully saved his earnings, however, and made every effort
to advance in a business way. With his removal to Boulder county in 1892 he en-
gaged in the feed business, continuing as a factor in commercial circles at Ward
for a number of years.

In 1900 Mr. Wood was united in marriage to Mrs. Ellen (Dailey) McCorry, a
native of Massachusetts and a daughter of Patrick and Honora (Sullivan) Dailey.
Her father was a native of Ireland and came to America in 1848, first settling in
Massachusetts, while subsequently he removed to Nebraska, there living until 1863,
when he came to Colorado, making the trip with ox teams. Arriving in Denver,
he cast in his lot with the pioneer settlers of this state and for some time followed;
mining but afterward returned to Jackson, Dakota county, Nebraska, where both
he and his wife passed away. In 1866 at Central City, Colorado, their daughter,
Ellen Dailey. became the wife of Vandaver W. McCorry. who secured a homestead
claim of one hundred and sixty acres, constituting a part of the farm upon which
Mr. and Mrs. Wood now reside. They have added to their holdings until their pos-
sessions aggregate four hundred and forty acres, of which one hundred and sixty
acres is irrigated, and the entire place is splendidly improved. Mr. Wood is actively
and successfully engaged in tilling the soil and raising stock and his labors are
attended with excellent results. He works untiringly for the further development
and improvement of his farm and carries forward to successful completion what-
ever he undertakes.

By her first marriage Mrs. Wood had a family of seven children: Mary Mea, the
wife of M. L. Mcintosh, residing near Nunn. Colorado; Daisy D., the wife of A. A.
Turner, of Boulder county; Ernest E.; Robert E.; and three who have passed away.
Upon the death of her first husband Mrs. Wood was not only left with the care of
her seven children but also had the development and cultivation of her farm on her
hands and operated the same for twelve years or until her marriage to Mr. Wood.
Many and diverse were the duties which fell to her during this period, but she rose
to the occasion in every respect. Mrs. Wood has lived upon the farm where she
still resides since 1870 and she and Mr. McCorry were the first settlers on the bluffs
where the home now is. When they came here the entire country was yet undeveloped
and even such undesirables as coyotes and rattlesnakes were abundant. Mrs. Wood
was born in Springfield, Massachusetts, and was but a child when she was brought
to Colorado.

In his political views Mr. Wood is largely independent, although he inclines more
or less toward the republican party, with wliich he has mostly voted. Fraternally
he is connected with the Masons, exemplifying in his conduct toward his fellow
beings the beneficent spirit of the craft. He is a loyal supporter of any cause in
which he believes, and his aid and cooperation are always given to those plans and
projects which he deems of essential value and worth to community welfare.


The farming and stock raising interests of Adams county find a substantial repre-
sentative in Walter C. Longworth, an enterprising young man, who was born in Kansas
on the 20th of June, 1886, a son of Henderson F. and C. Alice (Todhunter.) Longworth,
both of whom are natives of the Sunflower state. They removed to Denver, Colorado,
in 1905 and are still living in that city, the father being there engaged in the real
estate business. The family circle, which numl)ered seven children, still remains un-
broken by the hand of death.

Walter C. Longworth was largely reared in Kansas, being a youth of nineteen years
when he accompanied his parents on their removal to Colorado in 1905. Not long after-
ward he took up a homestead claim in Weld county and resided thereon for five years.
He afterward removed to Adams county, where he has since engaged in farming, and
he is today one of the progressive agriculturists and stockraisers of the district. His
land is carefully and systematically cultivated and everything about the place indicates
his determination to make his farm count for the utmost. He has secured the most
improved machinery to facilitate the work of the fields and he utilizes systematic
methods in all that he undertakes, being guided by high agricultural standards.

In 1910 Mr. Longworth was united in marriage to Miss Rebecca Tressler McKee,
who was born in Pennsylvania and is a daughter of Abner C. and Mary S. (Stambaugh)



McKee, who were likewise born in Pennsylvania. The mother passed away in that
state but the father is living and now makes his home in Harrisburg. Mrs. Longworth
is a graduate of the schools of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and a lady of liberal edu-
cation and broad culture. She was a teacher of domestic science for some years prior
to her marriage, winning high encomiums for her excellent work in that connection.
To Mr. and Mrs. Longworth have been born three children: Henderson McKee, who
was born June 19, 1911: Helen, born on the 1st of April, 1915; and Jameson, born Feb-
ruary 21, 1917.

Mr. Longworth votes with the republican party, to which he has given his earnest
endorsement since age conferred upon him the right of franchise. He has never sought
or desired ofiBce, however, but has concentrated his efforts and attention upon his
business affairs and is meeting with creditable and well deserved success, owing to
his close application, his laudable ambition and his unwearied industry.


H. Johansen, who is engaged in farming and stock feeding in Boulder county, is
a native of Denmark, although he has lived in the United States since his teens. He
was born in the former country August 3, 1867, a son of Peter and Marie (Schmidt)
Johansen, who were also natives of Denmark. The lather was born in Hucksted,
Schleswig, on the 12th of April, 1832, and died at the home of his daughter, Mrs.
Nels Jensen, in Oilman, Illinois, on the 20th of October, 1918, when he had reached
the advanced age of eighty-six years, six months and eight days. In 1853 and 1854
he served his country as a cavalryman in the Danish army, carrying messages to the
king with notable rapidity. He was married in 1862 to Miss Marie Schmidt and they
became the parents of five children, three sons and two daughters, of whom two sons
and a daughter are yet living. One son died in infancy in Schleswig and the eldest
daughter became the wife of Peter Anderson, of Oilman, Illinois, and passed away in
1903. In 1882, when the eldest son had reached military age, Mr. Johansen brought
his family to the United States in order that his sons need not serve as soldiers in
the German army, for Germany had annexed Schleswig and Holstein in 1864. On
landing on the shores of the new world Peter Johansen made his way westward
and took up his abode at Ashkum, Illinois, living in that vicinity and at Danforth,
where he engaged in farming until he retired from business in 1909 and took up his
abode in Oilman. He was long identified with farming Interests in Iroquois county,
Illinois, and was liighly esteemed as a representative agriculturist. His widow is
still living and yet makes her home in Illinois. The three surviving children of the
family are: Mrs. Nels Jensen; Paul, who is a business man of Crescent City, Illinois;
and our subject.

H. Johansen came to America with his parents when a youth of fifteen years.
He completed his education in the schools of Illinois and remained at home until he
had attained his majority, when he took up farming on his own account in Illinois,
purchasing land part of which he still owns. In 1902 he came to Colorado, where he
carried on general agricultural pursuits in Rio Grande county for three years. On the
expiration of that period he purchased the farm which he now owns and occupies,
coniprising one hundred and sixty acres of rich and productive land, all under the

Online LibraryWilbur Fiske StoneHistory of Colorado; (Volume 4) → online text (page 81 of 108)