For Momma - Memorial Slide Show (Turn Playlist Music off before watching)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

"You Want to Move Where?" - The Document - Continued

I do understand that not every person is as enthralled by family research as I, but, it is hard to imagine that even the most disinterested person wouldn’t be impressed by these Land Patent documents. The Land Patent was signed by the 25th President of the United States, William McKinley, by F.M. McKean, Secretary, C.H. Brush – Recorder for the General Land Office. Bonnie had another document that she had found and brought out another book for me to ogle at. That document was a two page hand written document called a “Warranty Deed”. The deed had been prepared in Cheyenne County, Nebraska for the sale of the Nelk homestead in 1900 to a John Hinrichs for the price of $225.00 ($1.41 per acre). I visited with a local Sidney farmer, Bob Poppen, who indicated to me that that same land is worth well over $100,000 in today’s market. (Just a side note to my fellow Geneabloggers: I was not required to wear any special gloves to handle the documents, but I was very cautious to do no damage and limited by handling of the document.) Looking over the land records for the Nelk homestead it appears that this land was owned by various Hinrichs family members through the years until about 8 years ago.

As I wrapped up my visit to the court house Bonnie asked if there were any marriages that may have taken place in the county. I knew that Fred and Tena Nelk had been married in Franklin County so I did not expect that any other family would appear in the marriage records. To my surprise the Marriage License of Fred’s brother Charles Nelk and Emma Shelley had taken place in Cheyenne County.

The biggest surprise came when I pulled out the papers I had brought on the Rolf Habben homestead and asked if she could help me locate where his land had been. I was shocked to discover that the Nelk and Habben homesteads were adjacent to each other at the crossroads of Rd 127 and Rd 46, which is
7 miles east of Gurley, Nebraska.
Rolf Habben’s old homestead is now owned by the Poppen family according to the plat map. Now this really sparked my interest because according to the delayed birth certificate for Tena’s daughter, Tessie, it states that a Mrs. Poppen witnessed her birth. I headed over to the Sidney Library and there I found a local history book that included biographies. I found the Harm and Hannah Poppen family, who had moved to Cheyenne County in 1889. The Poppen’s had emigrated from Sandhorst, Germany which is about 5 miles from where the Habben's lived in Wiesens, Germany. The Poppens had also been living in Wilcox, Nebraska and so were the Habben's and Nelk's. I think it is very likely that Hannah Poppen could be the person called out on the delayed birth certificate. After visiting with Hannah’s grandson I learned that the Poppen homestead was close to the Habben homestead so that also reinforced my theory. We probably will never know for sure but I’m pretty confident in my reasoning.
With the droughts and various plagues in the 1890’s many families gave up their homesteads. Fred and Tena Nelk left Nebraska about 1899 and settled in Wheaton, Traverse County, Minnesota.
Next my trip to the homestead……..

1 comment:

  1. Terri, I must admit I was scrolling down your through posts and something caught my eye here. This was so interesting to me. I love old documents and all of the information we can find in them. You do such a wonderful job bringing all of your research to life. And your storytelling is supurb!



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