Dana Reed Bailey.

History of Minnehaha county, South Dakota. Containing an account of its settlements, growth, development and resources ... Synopsis of public records, biographical sketches .. online

. (page 63 of 99)
Online LibraryDana Reed BaileyHistory of Minnehaha county, South Dakota. Containing an account of its settlements, growth, development and resources ... Synopsis of public records, biographical sketches .. → online text (page 63 of 99)
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capacity of chainman for about two weeks, he took the compass the
remainder of the season. In November he returned to Madison and
attended the law school. In March, 1870, he again came to Sioux
Falls and engaged in surveying during that vear, and since that time
he has resided there. In 1871 he erected a frame building on the
west side of Phillips avenue, just south of the barracks, drawing the
lumber from Sioux City with a pair of bronchos, and frequently
being obliged to unload and carr}' it across the sloughs himself.
The timber for the frame of this building was sawed by John O.
Langness with a whipsaw. He practiced law two years, but has de-
voted a great portion of his time since 1871 in procuring immigration
to Dakota and building up Sioux Falls. In the field of politics his
career has been remarkable. In 1872 he was an independent can-
didate for member of the territorial legislature, and received a cer-
tificate of election and took his seat, which was contested, and at the
end of about fifteen days his opponent was seated. The next day
this action was rescinded by the assembly, and he took his seat
again, only to be unseated soon after. At the election quite a num-
ber of railroaders voted in Deuel county, and without the vote of this
county he was defeated. This entire vote was thrown out by the as-
sembly. It is only fair to Mr. Pettigrew to state that he was in no
way responsible for this vote, and also that the legal votes cast were
not counted. In 1876, 1878 and 1884 he was elected to the territorial
council, and in 1880 was elected delegate to Congress from the Ter-
ritory of Dakota. He enjoys the distinction of being the first United
States Senator of the State of South Dakota, and in drawing lots for
the term he should serve with the newly elected senators from the
states of Montana and North and South Dakota he drew the long
term. In 1895 he was re-elected by the Republican party. In 1896
was a delegate to the Republican National Convention at" St. Louis,
but upon the adoption of the platform ignoring the free coinage of
silver left the convention and joined the Free Silver Republican


United States Senator.


])arty and supported Bryan for president in the presidential eam-
l)ai.o-n of 18*>l). Mr. Pettio-rew has been a tireless worker in his sen-
atorial capacity, not only in the interest of his constituency hut upon
all national issues. Well informed, resourceful, with a s])lendid
memory, without a trace of timidity in his niake-u]), he has forci'd
himself well up in the front rank of the ablest debators in the senate.
If the State of South Dakota elects a Republican leo-islature in 1*)(K)
he will not be re-elected, otherwise his senatorial career will loi-
donhtcdly be extended six years.

To o-o into a detailed statement of what he has done toward the
growth and development of the county, and especially the city of
Sioux Falls, would to a certain extent be a duplication of what al-
ready appears, for he has been connected with and taken a promi-
nent part in securing- the educational institutions, the manufacturing-
industries, and especially the railroads, which have contributed
largely in making- Sioux Falls what she is to-da^^ In all these mat-
ters he has spent his time and money, not beg-rudg-ingdy but volun-
tarily, and as the acknowledged leader, taking- upon himself personal
responsibilities which a less courag-eous man would have declined to
assume. The foreg-oing- is only a brief outline of his career thus far,
and what the future will add to his history no one would dare to pre-
dict. He is in the prime of life, his energ-y undiminished, his spirit
of enterprise unabated, and in the field of public affairs no one in the
state is so fully equipped for ag-g-ressive work as Sioux Falls most
disting-uished citizen, R. F. Pettigrew.

Phillips, Dr. Josiah Lake, was born in Farmington, Maine,
June 8, 1835, and was educated at Bowdoin colleg-e. He studied med-
icine with his father, Dr. Allen Phillips, and then went to Chicago
where he g-raduated from Rush Medical college at the earlv ag-e of
twenty-one years; spent one year at Prairie Du Chien, Wisconsin;
was one of the party sent out by the Western Town company to
start a town at the falls of the Big- Sioux. He arrived at Sioux Falls
on the 27th day of Aug-ust, 1857, and was among- those who spent the
following- winter at the falls. Upon the org-anization of Big- Sioux
county he was appointed justice of the peace by the g-overnor of Min-
nesota. In 18()1, having- returned to Dubuque, Iowa, he enlisted in
the l()th Iowa reg-iment, and was appointed assistant surg-eon and
soon after promoted surgeon of that reg-iment, and remained in the
service until the close of the war. In the fall of 1869 he returned to
Sioux Falls and perfected his title to the quarter section of land on
which the orig-inal villag-e of Sioux Falls was located. The first vil-
lag-e plat wdthin the present limits of the city of Sioux Falls was
made by him, and comprised nine blocks, 1 to 3 and 10 to 15 inclu-
sive, including the territory between Sixth and Ninth streets and
Phillips and Minnesota avenues. This plat was called "J. L. Phil-
lips Sioux Falls" and was recorded August 10, 1871, in book 1, page
1. In June, 1870, he removed his family to Sioux Falls and resided
for three years in the building- formerly used as the officers quarters;
from there they removed to the corner of Phillips avenue and
Eleventh street, where he resided until his death, June 12, 1882.

Upon the incorporation of the village of Sioux Falls in 1877, he


was elected one of its trustees, and was re-elected in 1878 and 187*).
AlthoutJfh a jj-ood physician and surg-eon he practiced but little after
coming- to Sioux Falls. While in the army, and during- his march to
the sea under General Sherman, his eyes became greatly inflamed,
and he never fully recovered from this disability. Owing to this
fact, and the time he necessarily had to devote in caring for his large
business interests, he refused to answer professional calls when the
services of other physicians could be procured. He was an out-
spoken, upright man, and always manifested a lively interest in pub-
lic affairs. He was taken sick on Saturday the 10th day of June,
1882, and, as stated above, died on the following Monday. His loss
as a husband, father, neighbor and citizen was keenly felt, for in all
these relations, he was a kind and honorable man.

Phillips, Mrs. Hattie C, the only daughter of Dr. Dagg-ett,
of Lockport, Illinois, married Dr. Josiah L. Phillips at Houston,
Texas, on the 1st day of July, 1867, and has been a resident of Sioux
Falls since June, 1870. She came there from Dubuque, Iowa, with
her husband, with a view of making it their home. Upon their ar-
rival in Sioux Falls there were only six white women in the little
village, Mrs. Franklyn, later the wife of C. K. Howard, Mrs. Samuel
Huckins, Mrs. Jephta Duling, Mrs. Delaney, and the two Mrs. Har-
thorn. Dr. Phillips had secured the building known as the officers
quarters for a residence. It was in this building Mrs. Phillips com-
menced keeping- house in Sioux Falls, and it remained her home for
three years. In 1873, Melvin Grigsby commenced the erection of a
residence on the corner of Phillips avenue and Eleventh street, and
Dr. Phillips purchased this building and moved his family into it the
same year.

After the death of her husband in June, 1882, Mrs. Phillips has
had the care of a large family of children, and the manag-ement of a
large amount of property. Mrs. Phillips has, without question, done
more benevolent work in Sioux Falls than any other woman whoever
resided here. She has seen the little hamlet without schools or
churches, and at times almost debarred from communication with
the outside world, gradually become a city with all the advantagfes
the term implies. Her interest in its welfare has g-rown with its
growth, and as new fields for benevolent work have developed she
has entered them as a laborer and benefactress. This work so con-
scientiously engaged in has greatly endeared her to the people of
Sioux Falls. But not this alone has made her the foremost woman
in the city, for she has contributed liberally to the support of all
such institutions and enterprises as had for their object the im
provement and elevation of society.

Phillips, Nyrum E., is a native of Trumbull county, Ohio, and
was born May 5, 1842. He worked on a farm and attended school
until 18()1, receiving- an academic education. In May of that year he
enlisted for three months in the 19th Ohio regiment, and re-enlisted
in 1862 as a private in Co. C, 125th Ohio, and remained in the military
service until the close of the war. When the reg-iment was org-anized
he was elected 1st Serg-eant and afterward promoted to 2d Lieuten-

Nyrum E. Phillips.


.-int, 1st Lieutenant and Caj)tain; was Adjutant and Ouartennaster
of the regiment, and was on CTeneral Updyke's staff, lillino- the posi-
tions of Aid-de-camp and Brio"ide Inspector. He was in the western
armv durino- the entire war. After havino- been mustered out at
Nashville, Tenn., he went to Ohio and from there to Pit Hole, Pa.,
where he eno-ayed in the mercantile business in the fall of 18(»5, but
in the g-reat lire at that city in March, 1866, lost evervthino- except a
pair of horses and a wag-on. He then returned to Ohio and remained
there until late in the fall of 1867 when he went to Omaha, Neb., and
spent the winter. Thespring- followino-, incompanv with Ed. Brouo-h-
ton, with whom he became acquainted while in PitHole, hewent down
the river to St. Joseph and from there to Selina and Port Ellsworth,
concluding- his tour of inspection at Fort Haves in Kansas. Prom
there he and Mr. Brougditon returned to Fort Ellsworth with a mule
train and then went to Omaha and from there to Sioux City, where
Mr. Broughton secured employment with C. K. Howard. Early in
the spring- of 1868 he ag-ain went to Omaha, having- just ten dollars
when he arrived there. He was seeking- employment and accepted
the first job offered him, which was that of g"oing- out to North
Platte with a g^ang- of men for a contractor on the Union Pacific rail-
road. He worked at the carpenter trade for awhile and finally
broug-ht up at Julesberg-, where he worked at the same busi-
ness, except during- the last thirty days of his stay at this place,
when he worked on the g-rade of the railroad. From Julesberg- he
went to Cheyenne on foot, and ag-ain worked as carpenter. At this
time Cheyenne had only five or six wooden building-s, the g-reater
portion of the population living- in tents. He had been at this place
only a short time w hen he learned that the quartermaster at Fort D.
A. Russell needed a clerk and he immediately put his worldly g-oods
into a satchel and "footed it" to that point, where hesecuredemplov-
ment until May, 1869. At this place he cast his first vote in the fall
of 1868, and it was the vote at the fort that elected Spink, the Repub-
lican nominee, as deleg-ate to Cong-ress. Mr. Phillips took an active
part in this campaig-n, and was g-reatly pleased with the result of the
election. In May, 1869, he went to Ohio on a visit, and when return-
ing- to the West he concluded to stop at Sioux Falls and see Mr.
Broughton, who was then running- the sutler's store for C. K. How-
ard. Arriving- at Sioux Palls on the 30th day of May, 1869, he learn-
ed that the troops had received orders to vacate, and thinking- the
military reservation would soon be opened for settlement he remain-
ed and took up the northeast one-fourth of section 20, in Sioux Falls
township. After the reservation had been opened in 1870 he oft'ered
to take S125 for his claim, but could only g-et an offer of S75; so he
concluded to stay awhile long-er — and is still a resident of Sioux
Falls. In June, 1869, the troops were ordered away, and then the
barracks were taken possession of by the people who had come to
Sioux Palls to reside. At this time there were no building-s in Sioux
Palls except the g-overnment building-s, and Mr. Phillips, of course,
lived in the barracks. He has been personally cog-nizant of and par-
ticipated in all the events and enterprises of public interest which
have taken place in Sioux Falls since the soldiers marched out of the


barracks and left her future to be cared for by the civilians who
came after them.

Mr. Phillips was elected register of deeds in 1872, and held the
office until April, 1876, when he resig-ned and John Bippus was ap-
pointed to till the vacancy. During-thetime he held this office he was
also (\x ofUcio county clerk. In 1878 he was elected one of the trus-
tees of the villag-e of Sioux Palls, and when the city was incorporat-
ed he was elected alderman from the First ward and re-elected in
1884. He has also been quite active in school matters. He was one
of the building- committee at the time of the erection of the Central
school house in 1878, and was a member of the first Board of Ed-
ucation after the corporate limits of Sioux Palls had been made an
independent school district and a board established. He held this
position for two years and was the first secretary of the board.
From April 7, 1882, until January, 1883, he was one of the county
commissioners. In 1884 he was again elected register of deeds, and
bv re-elections held this office eight years, and until April, 1888.
When the office of auditor was created he was ex officio clerk of the
board of count}' commissioners.

In 1872 he was elected a delegate to the Republican national con-
vention from the Territory of Dakota, and was also elected a dele-
gate from South Dakota to the national convention in 1892. He was
one of the Republican executive committe for Dakota for several
years during its territorial existence. On the 3d day of April, 1893,
he was elected Warden of the state penitentiary at Sioux Falls, which
position he held until May, 1899. But it is in the field of politics
that he is best known, and as a politician he is recognized as one of
the most capable managers of a campaign that has ever resided in
Dakota. He is of a quiet, unassuming demeanor, a man of feu-
words, but vigilant and tireless in his efforts to succeed. True to
his friends and possessed of a remarkable faculty for making com-
binations, it is seldom he fails in accomplishing whatever he under-
takes. As a neighbor and citizen he is g-enerous and enterpris-
ing, and no person in Sioux Palls has a longer list of friends.

PiLCHf:R, Albert P., was born at Plainfield, Illinois, March 12,
1857; attended the district schools and graduated from a high school.
When nineteen years old entered a railroad telegraph office, where
he remained until twenty-two years old, when he took charge of a
station at Maynard, Iowa, and since then has been station agent at
Dows, Clarion, Emmetsburg-, West Union and Independence, Iowa,
and Sioux Palls, S. D., where he arrived January 12, 1890. and took
charge of the B., C. R. & N. railroad station, which position he still
holds. He is an obliging official and well liked bv the traveling pub-
lic; belongs to the Masonic order, has been Eminent Commander of
the Knights Templar of Sioux Palls, and is at the present time
(Trand Junior Warden of the Grand Commandery of South Dakota.
He is a royal good fellow, and a highly respected citizen.

Place, Charles Edwin, was bom at South Berwick, Maine,
October 26, 1839, but the following vear removed with his parents
to Lowell, Mass., where they lived until 1847. At that time they re-
moved to Milwaukee, where the subject of this sketch received his


education, and later was employed on the C. & N. W. railroad,
where he remained until Au<j-ust 1, 18()1, when he enlisted in the 24th
Wisconsin Volunteers, and served nine months. He then became sta-
tion agent at New Libson, Wis., where he married Miss Susie
Emery, and remained ten years. In 1880, removed to South Dakota
and eno-ao-ed in the fuel business at Sioux Falls for several vears;
then became interested in the La Belle Ranch Horse Importino-
Company, and removed to Madison, S. D., but a few months later
the company failed, and Mr. Place attain located at Sioux Falls. He
then engag-ed in the insurance business with W. H. Holt for two
years, but his health commenced failino-, and he went to California.
After a short stav at that place he returned to Sioux Falls, but iinalh-
died at Hot Sprinjrs, S. D., on the 20th day of July, 1896. Mr. Place
was a kind nei^^-hbor, an u])rio-ht business man, and a hio-hlv re-
spected citizen.

Polk, Albert A., was born in Indiana, February 17, 1853, and
came to Iowa with his parents in 1856, where he resided until he
came to Sioux P^alls in 1880. He soon after became a partner of the
late Major T. S. Free, in the practice of law, under the firm name of
Free & Polk, which copartnership existed until the death of Major
Free in December, 1886. After this Mr. Polk continued in the prac-
tice of law by himself. He held the office of district attorney of Minne-
haha county for two years, 1887-9. Mr. Polk is an honest, uprio-ht
man, and an industrious lawyer. He does not seek to make much
display, but does his work thoroug-hly and to the satisfaction of his
clients. In April, 1899, he removed with his family to Kansas.

Potter, Wesley S., was born at Burlino-ton, Otseji-o county.
New York, on the 5th day of July, 1836. He attended the public and
hig-h schools and worked in a tannery until twenty years old. At that
time he removed to Rock county, Wisconsin, and worked as a carpen-
ter and joiner. At the commencement of the war he was in Mis-
souri, and during- the month of April, 1861, enlisted in a Missouri reg-i-
ment, w^hich, however, was soon disbanded. In 1863, he enlisted in
the 1st Wisconsin Cavalry, but before seeing- any service he was
made 1st lieutenant of Company D, 36th low^a Infantry, and served
througfh the war. He was wounded in his rig-ht shoulder on the 18th
day of May, 18()4, by a cannister shot. After the war he was en-
g-ag-ed in buying- g-rain in Iowa and Minnesota until he removed to
Sioux Falls, w here he arrived on thfe 11th day of May, 1881. For two
years and six months he was the assistant adjutant general of the
G. A. R., for the department of Dakota; and has been for several
years and is now eng-ag-ed in the collection business. He is an acti\e
and respected citizen.

Powers, David Edward, was born in Annsville, Oneida count\-.
New York, November 25, 1857. He spent his boyhood days on a farm,
attended the common schools and during- the balance of his minority
taug-ht school and attended the Niagara University. At the ag-e of
twenty-one he entered the law office of Walter Ballon at Boonville
and read law until 1880, when he was admitted to the bar at Roches-
ter, N. Y. After his admission t<-) the bar he practiced his profes-


sion for two years at Boonville and during- this time was associated
with L. W. Pisk. He then went to Rome, New York, and there formed
a copartnership with J. P. Olney and for two years was eng-aged in
active professional work. After the, expiration of this copartner-
ship he practiced alone until the summer of 1889, and then formed a
copartnership with H. S, Wilson of Rome, and was associated with
him until he came to Sioux Palls, where he arrived on the 11th day
of December, 1890. Immediately thereafter he opened a law office in
Madison, S. D., but remained only two months and then returned to
Sioux Palls, where he resided until March, 1899, when he removed to
New York. While a resident of Sioux Palls he was associated with
U. S. G. Cherry one year, and with D. J. Conway two years. He
was appointed city attorney in May, 1892, and held the office until
September 20, 1893, and in May, 1896, was ag-ain appointed to the
same office. Mr. Powers is a g-ood lawyer, and while practicing- in
Sioux Palls was connected with several important cases, one of them
being- the defense of Plent}^ Horses in the federal court, in which he
won considerable fame. He was one of the most courteous and ac-
commodating- lawvers in Sioux Palls, and was held in hig-h estimation
as a successful trial lawyer before a jury.

Powers, Pred A., was born in Oneida county, New York, No-
vember 17, 1853. He resided in his native state until he moved to
Dakota, where he arrived January 4, 1882. He located on the James
river, near Milltown, in Hutchinson county, where he bougfht consid-
erable land, and eng-ag-ed in farming- until the fall of 1893. On No-
vember 8, of that year, he came to Sioux Palls. He boug-ht and now
owns block thirteen in Riverside addition, where he resides and has
a commodious residence. He is the proprietor of the Riverside Nut-
l)utter Pactory, is an enterprising-, uprig-ht citizen, and is one of the
Elders of the Seventh Day Adventist church of Sioux Palls.

Pruner, Thomas H., one of the early settlers in this county,
was born in Knox county, Ohio, May 10, 1855; was reared on a farm,
and received a common school education; on the 14th day of October,
1871, came to Sioux Palls, and took up three hundred and twenty
acres of land in Wayne township, where he lived one year; then came
to Sioux Palls and worked for True Dennis in a blacksmith shop for
three years, and then, until 1884, was in the blacksmith business for
himself; during- the next few years was in the employ of the Sioux
Palls Brewing- Co., and in the livery business; in 1889 opened a store
on Ninth street, but sold out in 1891, and became the bookkeeper and
cashier of the Sing-er Manufacturing- Co., which position he now
holds. He is a g'-ood neig-hbor and a respected citizen.

OuiNCY, W. R., is a native of Bng-land, and was born April 27,
183*). He came to the United States when seventeen years of ag-e,
lived for awhile in Rockford, Illinois, then went to Mason City, Iowa,
where he engag-ed in the hotel business two years, and farming- thir-
teen years. Removed to Austin, Minnesota, and resided there sev-
eral years. Came to Sioux Palls in the fall of 1881, and rented Joe
Carpenter's farm for about three years, then bought a farm in Sioux-
Palls township, but sold it at the time of the boom, and is now en-


o-ao-ed in the feed business in the eit\- of Sioux Falls. He is an in-
dustrious, o-ood citizen.

Ramsey, William H., was horn in Crawford county, ( )hio. May
15, 1851; was raised on a farm and educated in the common and hio-h
schools, and was for two years a student in Oskaloosa colle<>"e, and
also in the Brvan and Stratton Business colle(>-e, Chicay-o, where he
was u-raduated. After attainint>- his majority eno"iyed in farmin,i>- in
Iowa until 1878, when he went into the clothinjj- and hoot and shoe
l)usiness with his vouno-er brother John H., at Harlan, Iowa. April
(), 1889, he came to Sioux Falls, and for three years was a dealer in
real estate. Since 1891, he and liis brother have been eno-aoed in
the boot and shoe business in Sioux Falls, under the firm name of
Rarasev Brothers. Mr. Ramsey is well and favorably known as a
citizen, and the firm has an excellent reputation in commercial

Ransom, Charles H., was born at Chazy, New York, October
5, 1853. When sixteen years of ag-e he w-as appointed chief clerk of
the post office at Plattsburg-, N. Y., which position he held thirteen
vears. In 1885 went to Omaha, Neb., and resided there until he re-
moved to Sioux Falls, where he arrived on the 10th day of February,
1887. Since that time he has been eng-ag-ed in various enterprises at
this place. He eng-ag-ed for awhile in the pork packing- business,
and was the owner of the axle-g-rease factory at South Sioux Falls
at the time it was destroyed by fire. During- the last three years he
has been engag-ed in the grocery business under the firm name of
Ransom & Newell, and is also operating- the Sioux Falls candy
factorv. He has taken quite an active part in politics, and was chair-
man of the Republican county committee inthecampaig-n of 1892, and
was again elected to that position in 1896. He is an enterprising-, in-
dependent, outspoken, citizen, and was never known to be on the
fence in reference to any public matter. He has a larg-e circle of
warm friends,

Ravndal, G. Bie, is a native of Norway, and was June 27,
1865. He received his early education from a private tutor; then at-

Online LibraryDana Reed BaileyHistory of Minnehaha county, South Dakota. Containing an account of its settlements, growth, development and resources ... Synopsis of public records, biographical sketches .. → online text (page 63 of 99)