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Biography of Albert Wolters

Among the prominent residents of Hailey is Albert Wolters, who was born in Germany, May 19, 1841, his parents being Carl and Augusta (Petri) Wolters, who also were natives of the same country, where the father served as a mining official. Our subject acquired his education in Germany, and was graduated in the Mining Academy at Clausthal, in the class of 1862. He then studied chemistry at the University at Gottingen, and in 1866 came to the United States, landing in New York. He remained in the eastern metropolis only a short time, and then went to Colorado, and after building the first Gerstenhofer roasting furnace for James E. Lyon & Company established an assay office in Central City. He moved to Georgetown January 20, 1868, where, in partnership with L. Hupiden, he ran the first silver mill ever constructed at Georgetown, Colorado, and thus occupied his time until 1869, when he assumed charge of the Baker Silver Mining Company’s mill and mine until the works were destroyed by fire. He next received from President Grant the appointment of superintendent of the United States assay office in Boise, and he acceptably filled that position until July 1, 1883, when he came to Wood River and purchased an interest in the Star mine, which he operated from 1880 until 1884, within which time the mine produced one hundred and twenty thousand dollars in silver, the silver selling at from one dollar and twelve to one dollar and fifteen cents an ounce. He sold his interest in 1884, and in 1889, in connection with two others, leased the Star mine for...

Biography of Presley M. Bruner

A prominent practitioner at the bar of Hailey, and ex-district attorney of Alturas (now Blaine) County, Idaho, Presley Morris Bruner, was born in Chillicothe, Ohio. September 15, 1850. On the paternal side is of German lineage, and on the maternal of Scotch descent. His father, J. A. Bruner, was born in Virginia, a representative of one of the old and prominent families of that state, living in the Blue mountain region. He married Miss Margaret Morris, a daughter of Judge Presley Morris, of Chillicothe, Ohio. Her father was a descendant of the McDonald clan of the highlands of Scotland, and traced his ancestry back to Mary, Queen of Scots. Mr. Bruner’s father was a minister of the Methodist Episcopal church, and devoted fifty-six years of his life to spreading the gospel of peace on earth, good will to men. He removed to California in 1856, going by way of the isthmus, and spent the remainder of his days as a member of the California conference. He was a man of scholarly attainments, of marked ability in his chosen calling, a persuasive speaker and a power for good among men. He departed this life in 1892, at the age of seventy years, and his wife passed away three years previously, at the age of sixty-nine. She was to him a most faithful helpmeet, ably assisting him in his work, and by her influence, example and kindly spirit largely augmenting the efforts of her husband This worthy couple were the parents of seven children, six of whom are living. Three of the sons and one of the daughters completed classical courses...

Biography of William H. Watt

William H. Watt, the president of the Delia Mountain Mining Company, has been largely instrumental in developing the natural resources of Idaho thus far, and his labors have not alone contributed to his individual prosperity but have also largely promoted the material interests of the state. By nativity a Canadian, he was born near Ottawa City, in the Dominion, December 23, 1851, and is of English descent. His grandfather, James Watt, was a native of England, and as an officer in the British army fought through the Crimean war. When his term of military ser-vice expired he crossed the Atlantic to Canada, where he lived to the ripe old age of eighty-two years. His son, John Watt, father of our subject, was born in Canada and married Miss Ann Malcomson, also a native of Ottawa. They were industrious and well-to-do farming people, and were Episcopalians in religious belief. Mr. Watt departed this life in the seventieth year of his age, but his wife is now living, at the age of three-score years and ten, on the old Canadian homestead. They had eleven children, ten of whom are yet living, the greater part of the number being residents of the old home neighborhood in Canada, though one is now living in West Bay City, Michigan, and one in Butte, Montana. William H. Watt, the fourth in order of birth, was reared under the parental roof and acquired his preliminary education in the public schools of Canada, after which he pursued a course in a business college of Minneapolis, Minnesota. He entered upon his business career as a farmer and also...

Biography of Francis E. Ensign

Holding marked prestige among the prominent members of the Idaho bar is Francis Edward Ensign, who is now engaged in the practice of the legal profession in Hailey. There are few-men whose lives are crowned with the honor and respect which is uniformly accorded him; but through forty-five years” connection with the west his has been an unblemished career. With him success in life has been reached by sterling qualities of mind and a heart true to every manly principle. In his varied business interests his reputation has been unassailable and in offices of public trust he has displayed a loyalty that classed him among the valued citizens of the commonwealth. He has nearly reached the seventieth milestone that marks earth’s pilgrimage, but is still concerned with the active affairs of life, and in the courts of his district displays a strong mentality undimmed by time and a power of argument that wins him many notable forensic victories. A native of Ohio, Mr. Ensign was born in Painesville, March 4, 1829, and is descended from English ancestors who came from the “merrie isle” to the New World, locating in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1630, only two years after the landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock. A little later the Ensigns became pioneer settlers of Hartford, Connecticut. The paternal grandfather of our subject was one of the first settlers of Pitts-field and one of the incorporators of the town. When Benedict Arnold, then in command of American forces in the Revolutionary war, at-tempted the capture of Fort Ticonderoga, he volunteered and aided in taking that British strong-hold, bringing away with...

Biography of Simon J. Friedman

One of the pioneer merchants and enterprising, progressive business men of Hailey, Simon J. Friedman, was born in Germany, April 5, 1846, a son of Itzig and Bertha (Usher) Friedman, also natives of that country. The father is still living, at the age of ninety years. Our subject was educated in Germany, gained his mercantile experience in his father’s store, and in 1869, when twenty-three years of age, came to the United States, for he had heard of the superior advantages and facilities afforded young men in the new world, and resolved to win success here if possible. He first took up his residence in Salt Lake City, Utah, and accepted a position as salesman in the store of Fred Auerbach & Brothers, with whom he remained for eleven and a half years, gaining a thorough knowledge of merchandising and of the methods of business as practiced in America. He was a most trusted and faithful employee and had the entire confidence of the house with which he was connected. From Salt Lake City Mr. Friedman went to southern Utah, where he opened a store on his own account. In the spring of 1881, learning of the great silver and gold discoveries in the Wood River country of Idaho, he was among the first to reach this section. The town of Hailey had just been laid out and a few tents raised. Mr. Fried-man put up a tent twenty by forty feet and there in began the sale of dry goods, clothing and boots and shoes. This was the small beginning of what has become one of the leading...

Biography of William T. Riley

William T. Riley was one of the founders of the town of Hailey, and throughout the period of its existence he has been identified with its development, and his name is therefore inseparably interwoven with its history. The wonderful upbuilding of the northwest is due to such men. men of enterprise, sagacity, sound judgment and rare discrimination, whose methods are practical and whose plans are comprehensive and far-reaching. Mr. Riley was born in Allegany County, New York. March 31, 1843. His father. John Riley, was born on the Emerald Isle, came to America when a young man and was married in Monmouth. New Jersey, to Miss Mary Bowles. They became pioneers of western New York, where the father carried on agricultural pursuits until his death. He was a member of the Catholic Church and his wife belonged to the Episcopal Church. His death occurred in the forty-fourth year of his age, and his wife passed away at the age of seventy years. Of their family of three sons and four daughters, only four are now living. The youngest son of the family, William T. Riley, was reared and educated in Allegany County and had attained the age of eighteen years when President Lincoln issued his first call for volunteers to aid in suppressing the rebellion. When the need for soldiers became more pressing, he offered his services, and in September 1861, was assigned to Company D, Eighty-sixth New York Volunteer Infantry, serving for three years in the Army of the Potomac. When that period had elapsed the south was still unconquered, and Mr. Riley determined to stand by the...

Biography of John C. Fox

Eighteen years have come and gone since John C. Fox arrived in Hailey. The town was then in its infancy, and throughout the intervening period he has been a prominent factor in the advancement of the commercial interests upon which the growth and prosperity of a village always depend. Widely known, his life history cannot fail to prove of interest to his many friends, and it is therefore with pleasure that we present this record of his career to our readers. Mr. Fox was born July 2, 1847, in Pennsylvania, a son of Daniel Fox, who was of German descent. The father married Mrs. Jane Titman, a daughter of Issachar and Elizabeth (Morris) Corson. The maternal grandfather of our subject was of French-Huguenot ancestry, descended from Cornelius Corson, who belonged to the religious sect so bitterly persecuted in France. The edict of Louis XIV, which resulted in the expulsion of all the Huguenots from the country, was dated October 18, 1685, and it must have been soon after that when Cornelius Corson fled from the land of his birth. He took up his residence on Staten Island, for his will was pro-bated there in 1693. His son, Benjamin Corson, emigrated to Bucks County, Pennsylvania, where several generations of the family have resided. Among those who have borne the name have been several prominent physicians and scholars of note, and the family history is one of which the descendants may well be proud. At an early day the Corsons became members of the Society of Friends, and in harmony with the teachings of that sect were opposed to warfare, so...

Biography of Charles O. Stockslager

One of the leading representatives of the bench of Idaho is Judge Charles O. Stockslager, now presiding over the courts of the fourth judicial district. He maintains his residence in Hailey, and in that city and throughout this section of the state is widely known as a jurist of marked ability, whose “even-handed justice” has won him “golden opinions'” from the bar and from the general public. A native of Indiana, he was born in Harrison County, February 8, 1847, and is a son of Captain Jacob Stockslager, whose birth occurred in Virginia and who won his title in gallant service in the American army during the hostilities with Mexico. He was married in the Old Dominion to Miss Jane W. Newell, also a native of Virginia, and later they removed to Indiana, becoming owners of a farm near the homestead of William Henry Harrison. When a young man Captain Stockslager engaged in boating on the Ohio River for several years, then devoted his energies to agricultural pursuits, and subsequently carried on merchandising. He also served his county as sheriff for several terms and was a loyal and progressive citizen, who lived an honorable and upright life and won the regard of all with whom he came in contact. He was called to his final reward at the age of eighty-four years, and his wife died at the age of seventy-six years. They were parents of four children, three of whom are living. Two of the sons loyally served their country in the civil war. The eldest, S. M. Stockslager, was a captain in the Thirteenth Indiana Cavalry, has...

Biography of Fred W. Gooding

Fred W. Gooding, ex-assessor and tax collector of Lincoln County and one of the most prominent and extensive sheep-raisers of this section of the state, was born in England, May 8, 1856, his parents, John and Elizabeth (Wyatte) Gooding being likewise natives of that country. Emigrating to the United States, they took up their residence in Paw Paw, Van Buren County, Michigan, where they still make their home, the father being a retired farmer of that locality. Both he and his wife are members of the Episcopal church. They had six sons and a daughter, and three of the sons are now successful sheep-raisers of Lincoln County, Idaho. Fred W. Gooding was eleven years of age when he arrived in Michigan with his parents. He acquired the greater part of his education in that state, and in 1878 went to California, where he engaged in farming in Tehama and Colusa counties. Subsequently he returned to Michigan and a little later pursued a business course in the Northern Indiana Normal College, at Valparaiso. In the spring of 1882 he came to Idaho and engaged in the wholesale and retail butchering business in Ketchum until the spring of 1888, when he turned his attention to the sheep-raising industry. He then purchased sixteen hundred head of sheep. In the fall of that year he purchased two thousand more. The winter of 1889-90 was an unusually severe one, many of the sheep died and many sheep-raisers lost everything they had. Mr. Gooding not only suffered heavy losses, but was in debt. However, he sustained a most creditable reputation for honesty in business affairs,...

Biography of Robert L. Nourse, M. D.

Dr. Robert L. Nourse, a prominent citizen and leading physician of Hailey, was born at Cloverport, Kentucky, September 27, 1864. He descended from English ancestry, and his American progenitors were among the early settlers at Salem and Nashua, Massachusetts. History tells how Rebecca Nourse, a member of his family, was burned at the stake at Salem on a charge of witchcraft, and the story forms one of the darkest and most painful chapters of our American history. One of the sights of Salem is the monument erected to her memory by members of her family of a later generation, and there is no other shrine on the continent at which so many tears have been shed. Dr. Nourse’s father, Charles Augustus Nourse, was born at Salem. He came west to Illinois with his brothers and was married at Ouincy to Miss Frances Bridges, a native of Kentucky, related to the Bullard and Murray families of that state, members of whom, as did some of the Bridges, participated in the war of 1812-14 and the war with Mexico. He died in 1880, at the age of sixty-one; his wife, at the age of forty-one, in 1867. They had nine children, of whom five are living, and so far as possible reared their family in the strict Presbyterian faith, of which they were lifelong adherents. Dr. Robert L. Nourse, their youngest child, was educated in the public schools and at an academy, and received his degree of M. D. from Rush Medical College, Chicago, in 1889. He practiced his profession in Chicago and at Ashland, Wisconsin, until he came to Hailey....
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