Modern Woodmen

History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Joseph C. Young

Joseph C. Young, born in March 1853 in Waukesha County, Wisconsin, was a versatile businessman and civil servant in Springfield, South Dakota. Son of Noah W. and Mary (Purrinton) Young, Joseph moved to Bon Homme County in 1878, initially farming before shifting to carpentry and contracting. In 1890, he acquired the Springfield Times, later selling it to return to contracting. In 1901, he co-purchased a harness and furniture store, and in 1902, he became Bon Homme County’s official surveyor. Married to Florence Britton since 1875, they had four children. Joseph was active in politics, fraternal organizations, and the Congregational Church.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of William H. Smith

William H. Smith, born April 28, 1857, in Juneau County, Wisconsin, was the son of Irish immigrants John and Bridget Smith. Raised on a farm, he moved to South Dakota in 1878, filing a claim in Brookings County. Initially living in a sod house, he later bought a substantial farm in Parnell Township. Smith diversified his agricultural endeavors and amassed significant landholdings. He married Mary Buckley in 1882, and they had nine children. Smith was involved in local politics, the Catholic Church, and fraternal organizations such as the Ancient Order of United Workmen and the Modern Woodmen of America.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of James Alfred Copeland

James Alfred Copeland was born on September 21, 1852, in Fountaindale, Illinois. He was the son of Alfred Williams Copeland, born June 18, 1809, in Massachusetts, and Hannah Brewster, a Pennsylvania native and descendant of Elder Brewster from the Mayflower. James received his education in Illinois and attended Wheaton College. In 1879, he began studying law in Nebraska and was admitted to the South Dakota bar in 1890. He served as clerk of courts, justice of the peace, and county judge in Vermillion, South Dakota. Copeland was active in the Republican Party and various fraternal organizations. He married Estella E. Hayes in 1880, and they had eight children, though three died young.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of John P. Wolf

John P. Wolf, born December 9, 1854, in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, was a notable pioneer of Spink County, South Dakota. He was the son of Henry G. and Margaret F. Wolf, with his father serving as justice of the peace and clerk of courts in Gettysburg. John initially worked in paper manufacturing in Pennsylvania, then farmed in Minnesota before homesteading in Spink County in 1881. Wolf held various public offices, including deputy county auditor and treasurer, and managed a real estate business. He was active in several fraternal organizations, including the Masonic order and the Knights of Pythias.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Rev. Edward Ashley

Rev. Edward Ashley, a prominent Protestant Episcopal clergyman in South Dakota, was born on December 12, 1854, in Road Hill, Wiltshire, England. He emigrated to the United States in 1873, settling in Muskegon, Michigan. Initially working as a carpenter, he later became a missionary teacher among the Sioux Indians in Dakota Territory, and was ordained a deacon in 1877 and a priest in 1881. Ashley served on various Indian reservations and became rural dean and examining chaplain for the state. He married Elizabeth Ann Martin in 1877, and they have five children. Ashley is also active in Masonic and fraternal organizations.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of James H. Brannon

James H. Brannon, a pioneer of Grant County, established the first livery business in Milbank, South Dakota. Known for his well-directed energy and honorable methods, he has achieved prosperity in the farming, livestock, and livery industries. Born in Massachusetts in 1859, Brannon apprenticed as a cabinetmaker before venturing west. After facing setbacks, including a prairie fire that destroyed his farm, he erected the first livery and feed barn in Milbank. Today, he owns the largest barn and controls the county’s biggest livery business. Brannon is highly regarded for his geniality, courtesy, and prominent position in Grant County’s industrial, business, and civic affairs.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Edward P. Brockman

Edward P. Brockman, the efficient and popular Register of Deeds of Grant County, was born in Hastings, Minnesota, on October 16, 1868. He received his education in Minnesota and North Dakota, eventually becoming a teacher before venturing into the merchandise business. Brockman’s journey led him to Milbank, where he served as Register of Deeds and established himself as a valuable member of the community. He is actively involved in local affairs, a loyal citizen of Grant County, and holds positions in various organizations. Married to Elizabeth E. Wasem, the couple has two children. Brockman’s dedication and contributions have made him a respected figure in Milbank.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of William A. Kriesel, M. D.

Dr. William A. Kriesel, a respected and popular member of the medical profession, has established a successful practice in Milbank. Born in Holmesville, Indiana, in 1870, he received his education in Stillwater and graduated as a Doctor of Medicine in 1897. Dr. Kriesel’s dedication to medicine is evident through his involvement in various medical societies and associations. He is known for his skill as a physician and surgeon, serving the community with distinction. Additionally, Dr. Kriesel is active in public affairs, affiliated with fraternal organizations, and deeply committed to his role as a Republican and a member of the Episcopal Church.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of William F. Rabbitt

William F. Rabbitt, the incumbent clerk of the county and circuit courts for Grant County, is widely regarded as an able executive and a popular figure in the community. Born in County Galway, Ireland, in 1872, Rabbitt emigrated to America at the age of twelve. After residing in Chicago and Philadelphia, he settled in South Dakota, where he acquired a substantial farm. Engaged in farming and stock raising, Rabbitt’s commendable work led to his election as clerk of the courts in 1900, a position he was re-elected to in 1902. Beyond his public service, Rabbitt is known for his business acumen and dedication to agricultural development.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Roy J. Sweet

Roy J. Sweet, the esteemed cashier of the First State Bank of South Shore, is a native of Glencoe County, Minnesota. Born in 1875, he hails from a family deeply rooted in Minnesota, with his father, William H. Sweet, having survived the tragic Indian outbreak of 1862. Roy J. Sweet’s remarkable career in banking began as an assistant cashier in Iowa, eventually leading him to his current position. Highly regarded for his expertise and careful approach to finance, he has played a pivotal role in the enduring success of the First State Bank. A respected figure in both professional and community spheres, Sweet’s dedication to the growth and well-being of his town has garnered him widespread admiration.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Judge Walter Crisp

Judge Walter Crisp, a progressive and influential figure in Dell Rapids, South Dakota, was born in England in 1849. After immigrating to the United States in 1869, he settled in Wisconsin before eventually making South Dakota his home. With a thriving career as a farmer and later as a public servant, Judge Crisp played a vital role in the growth and prosperity of Dell Rapids. Known for his charitable endeavors and active participation in various fraternal orders, he was respected as a well-rounded individual dedicated to the betterment of his community. Judge Crisp’s success, integrity, and devotion to family and civic duty made him a highly regarded member of society.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Lester H. Bentley

Lester H. Bentley, a prominent figure in both the legal and business realms of Milbank, South Dakota, is known for his active involvement in politics, civic affairs, and industrial ventures. Born in Minnesota in 1871, Bentley honed his skills through farm work and pursued a legal education at the University of Minnesota. Graduating in 1892, he embarked on a successful legal career in Montevideo before establishing himself in Milbank. Bentley’s expertise extends beyond law, as he holds positions in various financial institutions and industrial enterprises. With his remarkable acumen and progressive mindset, Bentley has left an indelible mark on his profession and the community.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Merritt B. Wiseman

Merritt B. Wiseman, a native of Grant County, South Dakota, was born in 1879 and holds the distinction of being the first white child born in the county. Coming from a pioneer family, he grew up in Milbank and received an education from the local schools, later graduating from Milbank High School in 1897. After gaining experience in the printing trade, Wiseman served as deputy auditor in the county auditor’s office. He also had affiliations with various fraternal organizations and remained an active member of the Republican Party. In 1902, he married Lillian Lau from Wisconsin.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of John S. Farley

John S. Farley, a prominent merchant in Milbank, has built a prosperous business in hardware and farming implements. Born in Galena, Illinois, in 1856, he grew up on a farm in Howard County, Iowa. After assisting with farm work, he established himself in the hardware business in Milbank in 1880. Through diligent work and correct methods, his business thrived, drawing customers from a wide area. Farley’s dedication to public service is evident in his support of the Republican Party and his elected positions as county treasurer and member of the board of aldermen. He is also involved in community organizations and holds membership in the Catholic Church.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of James D. Reeves

JAMES D. REEVES, a native of Minnesota, made a significant impact on South Dakota’s public affairs. As a newspaperman and former state auditor, Reeves earned public confidence and esteem. Beginning his career as a printer, he founded several newspapers, including the Groton Mirror and the Groton Independent. With unwavering dedication to Republican principles, Reeves served as mayor, school board member, and state auditor. He proved to be a skilled administrator during his tenure and was recognized as a progressive thinker in the newspaper industry. Reeves was also an active member of various fraternal organizations.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Henry Roth

Henry Roth, a successful farmer and stock grower in Hanson County, South Dakota, comes from a respected pioneer family. Born in Minnesota in 1862, Henry’s parents were German immigrants and devout Lutherans. Following in his father’s footsteps, Henry dedicated himself to agricultural pursuits and now owns a remarkable 430-acre farm in Spring Lake township. Known for his expertise in raising red polled cattle and high-grade hogs, Henry has gained a reputation for his outstanding farm, boasting well-maintained buildings, fences, and even a beautiful tree grove. Actively involved in local politics and cherished by his community, Henry, along with his wife Minnie, contributes to the Lutheran church and engages in various fraternal organizations.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Harry A. Holmes

Harry A. Holmes, an influential citizen of Oacoma, South Dakota, has played a vital role in the growth and development of Lyman County. Born in Wisconsin in 1860, Holmes became a skilled blacksmith and ventured to Dakota in 1883. Settling in Oacoma, he established the town’s first blacksmith shop, which flourished over the years. Holmes actively participated in public affairs, serving as deputy sheriff and making significant contributions to the town’s prosperity. He was a dedicated Republican and a respected member of various secret and benevolent organizations. Holmes, a cherished family man, married Lizzie E. Elliott, and together they raised their children in a loving home.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of Henry M. Davison

Henry M. Davison, a prominent businessman and influential citizen of Springfield, South Dakota, was born and raised in Bon Homme County. After excelling in education, he joined the Springfield Bank and later co-founded the highly successful Springfield Hardware Company. A dedicated Republican, Davison served as treasurer of Springfield for five years and is currently in his second term as mayor, leading the city with exceptional management. His integrity and contributions to the community have earned him a stellar reputation. Davison’s personal life is equally fulfilling, with a loving marriage to Eva G. Stevens, and he actively participates in various fraternal organizations and supports the Episcopal Church.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of George H. Pinckney

George H. Pinckney, an esteemed auditor of Grant County, South Dakota, has been a resident since 1887, achieving success through his dedicated efforts. Born in New York in 1867, he was raised in Minnesota and educated in its public schools. After a brief period of teaching, Pinckney moved to South Dakota and engaged in farming before acquiring his own property in Grant County. A committed Republican, he garnered support for his election as County Auditor. Pinckney remains an influential figure, maintaining his farm and actively participating in organizations such as the Modern Woodmen of America. He and his wife, Helen Allen, have four children: Hazel, Nada, Gladys, and Francis.

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History of South Dakota vol 1 title page

Biography of George G. Lasell

George G. Lasell, a highly honored and influential citizen, is the cashier of the State Bank of Twin Brooks and a representative member of the Grant County bar. Born in Spring Valley, Minnesota, in 1867, he comes from a distinguished lineage, with French ancestry tracing back to the famous explorer Sieur de La Salle. After successful years as a teacher, Lasell pursued law studies and was admitted to the South Dakota bar in 1900. He established himself as a prominent businessman, with interests in banking, coal, and lumbering. A Democrat and active in fraternal organizations, Lasell’s accomplishments are a testament to his well-directed efforts and dedication.

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