The History of the Early Settlement of Norton County, Kansas

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U. W. Miller, now of Beatrice, Nebraska, settled on the farm now owned by E. L. Ervin; Dave Myers located on what is now owned by G. W. Reed.  The Philip Myers place has lately been divided, the north eighty passing into the hands of E. L. Ervin and the south eighty to M. Lichty.  The next year after locating being rather dry, the entire crowd scattered.  The Myers finally getting back to Falls City where they are yet, except Dave who is in Washington state.  Stan Wicks who located the farm now owned by father Shuey is now in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Strange as it may appear Shoemaker came for fun and stayed, while the others came to stay and are all gone.  He located on the south west quarter of section 29, town 2 range 24, and broke prairie and helped dig wells until fall; he then came to Norton and attended the first teachers' institute held in the county, the same being under the management of Joel H. Simmons as county superintendent and Ida A. Ahlborn as conductor.  At the close of the institute he was engaged as principal of the Norton school at a salary of $30 per month and taught in the building which has since been remodeled and used as a residence by J. F. Wright.  Mrs. Davies being primary teacher and struggled through the term in the little building now occupied by Mrs. F. Gay as a millinery store.

In the spring of 1880 he was employed as clerk in the store of Herman & Kirkpatrick which position he held for about two months, at the close of which he was selected as deputy county clerk by M. J. Fitzpatrick, who in October of the same year forged a county warrant and to escape prosecution left the country, and Billy was appointed to fill the vacancy; and at a meeting of the republican county central committee his name was placed on the ticket and at the general election was elected to fill the unexpired term.  In the spring of 1881 he went east and on May 5, was married to Mary M., only daughter of Jonathan Kelso, near Elk Lick, Somerset county, Pennsylvania.  They returned to Norton and began keeping house in the old Fitzpatrick property now owned by E. E. Kennedy.  He was the candidate for re-election and received the nomination in the republican convention by acclamation, but this being the year in which the great salary fight took place another convention was held, which would now be called a mugwump convention, and A. B. Harmonson was nominated for county clerk and defeated Mr. Shoemaker at the polls by a large majority.  Mrs. Shoemaker's health not being good, in the spring of 1882 they removed to Denver, Colorado where they resided for two years; her health not being benefited by the change they went back to Richardson county, Nebraska. and lived on a farm until the spring of 1885; they then returned to Norton where he accepted a position in the Norton County Bank on the 18 day of May and has acted in the capacity of assistant cashier up to the present time, the bank having been merged into the Norton County State

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