Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Photo of the tombstone of George Clinton and Catherine (Willman) Ferguson, Odell Cemetery, Odell, Nebraska.
Photo taken by Mary Russell Hollowell.
George Clinton Ferguson, 1830-1907
Geo Clinton Ferguson was born May 23rd 1830 at Ross' Corners near Gregsville, Livingston Co. N.Y. and died at Odell Nebr., Feb. 3nd 1907 Aged 76 years, 9 months and 29 days. His mother was a descendant of the McPherson clan of Scotland.
True to American instincts, he followed the star of Empire Westward and Oct. 22nd 1851, found him at Hartford City, Indiana, where he married Catherine Willman, who here to this union 10 children, eight of whom are living, the mother herself departing from this life but a little over a year ago. After helping complete the Pittsburg and Fort Wayne R. R. Mr. Ferguson while living at Johnstown Ohio, was engaged by Paul Rogers one of the original 13 settles (sic) of Omaha and a member of the Brownville Townsite Co., to come to Nebr. to set up and run a sawmill which had been purchased at Cincinnati*. For this work he was to receive the expenses of himself and family and $5.00 per day. The company arrived at Brownville by boat May 16th 1855.
He sawed the first lumber in Nebraska, an event which was celebrated by a dance and a barbecue to which 1200 Otoe Indians were invited.
He witnessed the first marriage in Nebraska, the contracting parties being one Sam Stairs and a woman named Nancy Swift of Nemaha Co.
In 1856 he put up a sawmill in Nehawka, Cass Co. for Pollard and Sheldon, the latter, the father of Governor Sheldon. He then sawed the lumber for the house in which the Gov. was born and has been living, it is said.
Father Gage an old pioneer Methodist preacher for whom this count is named, was well known by the deceased.
When an expedition was planned against the Indians who were on the warpath, only 50 c. was found in the crowd and aid for provisions came only when Mr. Ferguson turned in an order for which two wagon loads of bread stuffs and bacon were furnished the company.
Deceased moved to Old Charleston in 1878 and has lived in the vicinity of Odell ever since.
Following are the children of the deceased:
William Ferguson of Odell, Mrs. Mollie Dalrymple, Hanover, Kans., John Ferguson, Odell, Nebr., Clinton Ferguson, Hollenburg, Kans., Melvin Ferguson, Washington, Kans., Mrs. Anna McMullen, Greenleaf, Kans., Henry Ferguson, Barns (sic), Kans., and Mrs. Maggie Smith, Narka, Kans.
The grandchildren number 39 and great grandchildren 17.
The funeral was conducted from the M.E. church Monday at 1:30 under directions of Diller Lodge A.F. and A.M., Rev. O. W. Rammell (sp?) preaching the sermon. Interment was made in the home cemetery.
*Cincinnati, Nebraska, was located about 1 mile south of Dubois, Nebraska, in Pawnee County. Source: http://www.casde.unl.edu/history/counties/pawnee/dubois/
~Source of obituary: Odell Weekly Wave, February _, 1907, page 1.
George Clinton Ferguson (1830-1907) - James Clinton Ferguson (1863-1942) - George Melvin Ferguson (1895-1972) - George Clinton Ferguson (1921-1953).