of Lyon County Minnesota
MARSHALL, the capital of Lyon county, is the largesl and oldest existing town in the county. It is located at the Big Lend of the Redwood river, and its elevation above sea level is 1174 feet. It is a station on the Chicago & Northwestern railroad and the Great Northern railroad. Otherwise described, Marshall is on section 4, Lake Marshall township, and the business center of the city is only three miles, in a direct line, from the geographical center of the county.
The population of Marshall in 1910 was 2152, but there has been an increase since that time and a census today would show a population of about 2500. It is one of the progressive and prosperous towns of Southwestern Minnesota. All lines of business that are to be found in the towns of agricultural communities of the upper Mississippi valley are represented. It is noted for its beautiful homes, schools, churches and social organizations, and in these respects it is the peer of any city of its size in the state.
Considered in its natural state, the location of Marshall is one of unusual beauty; Southwestern Minnesota has not a more lovely spot. Through the eastern part of the city flows the Redwood river, skirted by a growth of natural timber, which forms a series of pretty little parks. In its natural state and with the embellishments added by the hands of man, Marshall ranks as one of the prettiest little cities in a state distinguished for its pretty towns. Especially is one charmed with its loveliness in summer. Then the broad avenues and parks are clothed in brightest green; trees are everywhere.
One can hardly realize that less than a half century ago this spot was an uncharted wilderness, practically unknown to white men; yet such is the case. Time was when the dusky red man pitched his tepee where now Marshall's churches are located; vast herds of bison inhabited the surrounding country and made their wallows, perhaps, where now our courts are held; timid deer browsed where at present the pupil studies his natural history; elk in countless numbers roamed the adjacent prairies and saw their antlers reflected in the clear waters of the Redwood as they bent down to drink.
When the first white man set foot on the site of the city is not known. Possibly he was some adventurous trapper who had pushed out beyond his asso- ciates to locate new grounds in which to ply his trade, and, having come to the Redwood river, proceeded up the stream to the point where was later founded the city. Maybe Joseph LaFramboise in the thirties or James W. Lynd in the fifties, in their operations in Lyon county, visited the Big Bend of the Redwood and were the first to stand upon the site. Possibly the first was a member of one of the exploring parties that visited Southwestern Minnesota in an early day.
History records that wherever the North American Indians were in the habit of gathering for purposes of residence, council, worship or barter, those spots have invariably been selected by white men on which to locate their centers of population. There is scarce an instance to the contrary, and. indeed, it would have been remarkable had a city not been founded where Marshall now stands. For the Big Bend of the Redwood was a well-known spot to the aborigines; there they were wont to gather and make their camps while on the warpath or hunt, and it came to be a popular assembling ground. Trails extended from it in four directions: northward to the Lac qui Parle country; southward, past Lake Marshall, to the Cottonwood river country and Lake Shetek; southwestward, up the Redwood river, to the Lynd woods and the famous Pipestone quarries; northeastward, down the Redwood, to the present site of Redwood Falls and the Minnesota river.
The land on which Marshall was later built (section 4, Lake Marshall township) was without a claimant until the summer of 1869. At that time C. H. Whitney and C. H. Upton, accompanied by others, came to the county and located claims thereon, Mr'. Whitney taking the southeast quarter and Mr. Upton the northeast quarter. They broke a little land on each of those claims and also on the northwest quarter of the same section, which was reserved as the claim of Mrs. Ursula Stone, mother-in-law of Mr. Upton and a soldier's widow. These gentlemen departed from their claims on June 1st. and on the eighteenth made their filings in the land office at New Ulm.
Messrs. Whitney and Upton returned on June 1, 1870. Mr. Whitney built a sod shanty on his claim the first building erected in Marshall, though not the first in the village as originally platted and Mr. Upton put up a sod shanty on his claim, both being on the east side of the river and not in the original platted portion, but in additions later made. Although there was no prospect of the founding of a village at the time, Mr. Whitney, on October 17. 1870, secured the establishment of a postoffice, which was located on his claim and of which he became postmaster. The office was named Marshall and was operated as a country postoffice until the village was founded.
During 1870 a number of settlers located in the vicinity of the village-to-be and the Marshall postoffice became a sort of social center for those living in the neighborhood. Late in May, 1871, Mrs. Ursula Stone and Milo Morse arrived and selected as their claims the remaining land on section 4, Mr. Morse filing on the southwest quarter and Mrs. Stone on the northwest quarter. In June Mr. Morse, assisted by his neighbors, built a sod shanty at a point on his claim which is about where the Van Dusen elevator now stands, close to the Northwestern tracks.
Not until early in 1872 was there thought of a village at the Big Bend. Then came rumors of the proposed extension of the Winona & St. Peter railroad through Lyon county, and a little later came the surveyors who selected the route. The people at the Big Bend early put in a claim for a station on the proposed road, hut their claim was opposed by the settlers at the point where the road would cross Three-Mile creek, close to the present village of Ghent. For a time the choice was in doubt, but the settlers at the Big Bend were triumphant, largely through the exertions of Mr. Whitney. He made a trip to the land office at Redwood Falls, secured data concerning the land filings in the two neighborhoods, and presented the matter to the railroad authorities in such light that they promised the Lyon county station should be at the point where the road would cross the Redwood river.
It was not long after the selection of the site was made before there were signs of a village. The first building erected, excepting the sod houses hefore mentioned, was put up in June, 1872. It was a little frame building erected by the railroad company for the use of its engineers and stood where the Lawrence furniture store is now. The second building was put up about the same time and stood in the middle of Third Street, facing Main, in front of the site now occupied by the Lyon County National Bank. Its dimensions were 13x16 feet, with a lean-to, and the lumber it contained was hauled from New Ulm. The builders were William Everett, R. M. Addison and Charles A. DeGraff (the latter the head of the contracting firm which built the railroad), who formed the firm of William Everett & Company for the purpose of engaging in business in the proposed town. A large stock of goods was carried and the firm did an enormous business from the start, most of the patrons being employees doing construction work.
At a time when the only buildings on the site were the engineers' office, the Everett store building and the sod shanties of the homesteaders, and before it was platted in July. 1872, Marshall was named. The momentous event occurred at a supper served a party of railroad officials by Mrs. C. H. Whitney in the engineers' office. There were present Vice President and Treasurer Sykes, General Manager Howe, General Superintendent Stewart, Attorney General Smith, Chief Engineer W. G. Ward, Assistant Engineer J. W. Blake, Contractor DeGraff and his son, Charles DeGraff.
During the meal the naming of the station was discussed and the following names were proposed, all in honor of some member of the party: Ward City. Howeville, DeGraffton, Stewartville and Blake City. No agreement was reached and W. G. Ward suggested that their hostess, Mrs. Whitney, name the station and the others assented. Having heard the discussion, Mrs. Whitney realized that the selection of one of the names proposed might prove embarrassing, and she selected the name Marshall, after the postoffice conducted by her husband. The name was instantly accepted by the officials. With a libation of water sprinkled upon the ground, General Smith baptized the new town, accompanying the ceremony with a speech in which he urged upon Marshall's foster parents the duty of using their influence in the cause of temperance within its limits. The party remained in Marshall over night and then continued their journey to Lake Kampeska.
But little progress was made in the building line before the railroad reached the town. Early in September Jesse Bagley built a little structure where the Watson hardware store now stands and used it as a boarding shanty. In September also Captain Herrick and Major Filkins set up a large tent (to the rear of the site of John Schneider's store) and conducted a saloon, which was liberally patronized by the railroad workers. In this tent while it was so employed, the first religious services in Marshall were conducted by Rev. E. H. Alden.
October was a busy month in the new town. It witnessed the arrival of the railroad on the twelfth, the opening of a hotel on the same date, and the platting of the village on the twenty- second.
The hotel was erected by C. H. Whitney and was a substantial structure. It was located where the present Atlantic Hotel stands, was 35x40 feet and two stories high. Mr. Whitney had decided to build just one month before the hotel was opened to the public. On the twelfth of September he left for Winona to purchase the lumber. The stock was billed to "the end of the line," which proved to lie near the present village of Amiret, and was hauled from that point by team. The structure was rushed to completion and was opened October 12, the day the first train was run to the town. Supper was provided for 275 men that evening.
For the purpose of platting the Marshall townsite a partnership was formed by J. H. Stewart, superintendent of the Winona & St. Peter Railroad Company; J. H. Jenkins, assistant superintendent; W. G. Ward, chief engineer; J. W. Blake, assistant engineer; and C. H. Whitney. They purchased the southwest quarter of section 4 from Milo Morse and the south half of the northwest quarter from Mrs. Stone and laid out the town on portions of those tracts and of the southeast quarter, which was the property of Mr. Whitney.
The site was surveyed by James A. Craik. The certificate of the plat was made October 22 by William G. Ward, Ella C. Ward, Joseph II. Jenkins, Augusta M. Jenkins, James II. Stewart, Lucy J. Stewart, Florence E. Blake, all by John W. Blake, their attorney in fact, and by John W. Blake, Charles H. Whitney and Mary A. Whitney, personally. The certificate was acknowledged before William Langdon, register of deeds, and was filed in his office October 22, 1872.
The original plat consists of twenty-four blocks, mostly on the west side of the river. The streets running northeast and southwest were named East Third, East Second, West First. West Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth. Those running northwest and southeast were named Marshall, Redwood, Lyon and Main.
After the townsite was platted, although winter was close at hand, a number of buildings were put up and a few business enterprises started. Colonel Samuel MePhail opened a law office, erecting a little structure on the site of the Lyric Theater that was later used as a claim shack, R. M. Addison and H. J. Tripp, who carried the mail between Redwood Falls and Lynd, formed a partnership and engaged in the implement business on the lot to the rear of the present Addison Block. David P. Hillings came to the village and opened a general store. John A. Coleman elected a store building near the present Lyon County National Bank Building and engaged in business. Dr. S. Y. Groesbeck and J. W. Blake erected residences, the first in the village, and the former later engaged in the drug business.
A Congregational church society was organized and a building in which to hold services was begun. Daniel Farquher opened a blacksmith shop in a little building he erected near the Main Street bridge. W. M. Todd arrived in October and engaged in the lumber business, erecting a little office building in the rear of the present Youmans yards. Among others who located in Marshall in 1872 were J. W. Blake, who sold town lots; J. G. Ward, who became the first station agent; Walter Wakeman and W. M. Pierce, who were attorneys:C. H. Richardson, Stanley Addison. Andrew Barrett. Thomas McNeil, L. B. Nichols. Lyman Turner, N. Wilkins and C. Mehan.
The following letter written in Marshall October 26, 1872, and published in the Winona Republican gives an idea of conditions in the little village at that time:
Most everyone has heard of a little railroad station and embryo city just dug up away off somewhere in the West by the name of Marshall, but few know where it is located, except that it is accessible by the Winona & St. Peter railroad. It is situated eighty miles west from New Ulm, forty miles from Redwood Falls, forty-five miles from the Dakota line, twenty-five miles from Lake Benton, and eight miles from Lynd, the last mentioned being the illustrious seat of Lyon county.
Although* this little town is in its infancy, I venture the assertion that no one who has never visited it can conceive with any approach to facts the activity and interest with which business is impelled. In the morning a few loads of lumber are hauled to a certain spot and immediately begin the creaking of saws and clanging of hammers, continued until silenced by the darkness of night, when a little shanty, 16x24 feet, or smaller, is so nearly completed as to allow men to lodge therein the same night. A family will arrive in town on the evening train and next morning charter an ox team and lumber wagon, and after loading in the live stock, start out on the prairie to find a piece of government land on which to squat and by night they will find their land and arrange to file upon the same and next morning return with a carpenter to build the house.
There are at present in process of erection here one hardware store, one grocery and dry goods store, one boarding house, one livery stable and a Congregational church. The latter will be only a temporary, two-story building, the upper story of which will be used for religious purposes, and the ground floor will be used for school purposes.
The railroad company is building, all at the same time, a depot, a turn-table, an engine house and warehouse. All these buildings, with the dwelling houses being erected, give employment to a great number of men and cause a great deal of commotion and excitement.
Next comes our hotel, which was begun a little more than three weeks ago. Of course, it is not completed, yet it manages in some mysterious way to lodge the modest number of about seventy persons each night, and the tables are prepared to accommodate each time four hundred. The host and hostess, Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Whitney, say this is sticking them in too thick, but this is the only house of public accommodation in the place and they cannot conscientiously turn them away.
The first marriage in the village occurred in the fall of 1872. The con- tracting parties wore Charles Bellingham and Louisa Durst and the ceremony was performed by C. II. Whitney, justice of the peace, in his hotel.
In January, 1873, thepostoffice, which before had been located at C. H. Whitney's house, was moved to the village proper and Walter Wakeman became post master, the office being conducted in the drug store of Groesbeck & Wakeman.
During the winter of 1872-73 there was no advancement in Marshall, and a few who had located in the little town the fall before spent the season in their old homes. The new railroad was covered with drifts all winter and regular trains were not operated to Marshall until April 14. With the beginning of spring, however, there were made additions to the little town and its building up was rapid. W. M. Todd, who had wintered elsewhere but who had returned on the first train, has told of the progress that spring: "The ac- tivity in the direction of settling, building and improving the village and surrounding country during that spring of 1873 could hardly be described; or if it were described it would seem incredible. The real progress of the place, if not the existence itself, dates from that spring.
J. P. Watson was one of the first to set up in business. He opened a tin shop and a little later added a stock of hardware. Early in the spring G. E. Nichols opened a saloon. In May H. S. Adams and Mathew Metcalf arrived from Trempealeau, Wisconsin, bringing with them a building in sections. It was set up and the front part occupied as a blacksmith shop by Mr. Metcalf, while the rear part was occupied as a wagon shop by Mr. Adams.
A brick kiln was constructed in the summer of 1873 by C. H. Whitney and 85,000 bricks were burned. In the fall they were used by .J. F. Reichert in the construction of a double store building - the first brick building in the town. John Ward became the first station agent and M. E. Wilcox the telegraph operator. Walter Wakeman and Dr. S. V. Groesbeck opened a drug store, C. Woodbury became the proprietor of the pioneer hostelry and changed the name to Marshall House, P. L. Van Sant established the Travelers Home, Langdon & Laythe established a lumber yard, J. W. Williams opened a new hardware store, Turner & Loope sold lumber, furniture and machinery, A. O. Underhill opened a confectionery store, Mrs. Burrall a millinery store, Jesse Bagley a meat market, E. Fuller a photograph studio, Daniel Wilcox a blacksmith shop, L. Nichols a livery barn, W. M. Todd formed a partnership with Coleman & Company and continued in the lumber business, the Prairie Schooner the first newspaper was founded in August by J. C. Ervin.
In the first issue of the pioneer paper, August 23, 1873, appeared the following description of the growing town:
The growth of Marshall has been almost miraculous. Nine months ago the first house was erected. Now there are seventy-nine permanent buildings already constructed, and this number will soon be increased by the erection of others already planned. Upon the same ground where nine months ago the bird and insect tribe held undisputed sway, there has sprung into existence, seemingly from the very earth, a busy, bustling town, where now mingle in happy unison the sounds of the hammer and chisel, the continual rattle of passing vehicles, the shriek of the welcome locomotive, and the hoarse shout of Winona and St. Paul dry goods drummers. Within the year land has increased from $1.25 per acre to $25 to $200 each for residence lots and from $100 to $400 each for lots for business purposes, with ready sales.
Marshall now has four general stores, two hardware stores, one drug store, one boot and shoe shop, two millinery and dressmaking establishments, three lumber yards, one meat market, two blacksmith shops, two hotels, three boarding houses, an express office, a telegraph office, a depot and other railroad buildings, one bakery, two confectionery establishments, a furniture store, a flour and feed store, one livery stable, four dealers in agricultural implements, one brick yard, one church building, one doctor, three lawyers, two claim agents and dealers in real estate, one dealer in lime, three wheat buyers, three stone masons and several carpenters and builders.
When Marshall was one year old, the Prairie Schooner of October 25, 1873, boasted of progress made:
Our town is one year old this week and we challenge comparison with any other of like age in the West, from the Gulf to British America, and in this we refer not only to the size of the place and its numerous commercial advantages, but more especially to the character of its inhabitants, the business men, the schools, churches, etc. For many years Marshall will necessarily be the market and trading point for an immense extent of country.
The importance of the youthful village was increased as a result of the election in November, 1873, which gave it the county seat. Several improvements followed, and plans for the future embraced many enterprises that have not matured to this day.
The grasshopper scourge put a damper on progress and from 1874 to 1876, inclusive, the town was almost at a standstill. In April, 1874. the local paper estimated the population of Marshall at 300, but it is doubtful if the town had that many inhabitants. That year the Kendall mill was built, J. W. Blake started a cheese factory, B. A. Grubb opened a harness shop, S. H. Mott bought an interest in the store of Everett & Company, M. M. Marshall built a grain warehouse and engaged in the furniture business, C. A. Edwards established a lumber yard, L. F. Pickard opened a tin shop. Fuller & Company opened a feed store, Dr. Burgoyne located in the village for the practise of his profession, D. F. Weymouth opened a law office, Lockey & Yates, masons, and J. Goodwin & Company, builders, located in the village.
There were also a few additions in 1875. I. P. Farrington opened another general store, Joe Sears a shoe shop, J. A. Hutchins a blacksmith shop, Dr. Newell a dentist's office, Whitney & Webster an insurance office. George Nichols erected a brick building and Marshall, Coleman & Company and C. F. Case a double brick block on Third Street.
Despite the fact that times were about as hard as could be imagined, the local paper almost always gave glowing accounts of the town and its progress. The Messenger on October 1, 1875, said:
Although Marshall is only three years old, we can look with pride at the importance it has already assumed on the map of Minnesota. It started out on the unsettled frontier, with no especial natural advantages except an ocean of fertile prairie tributary to it, and has fought its way to recognition through grasshoppers and hard times, all the time a live town and one with a good destiny. The terminus of the Winona & St. Peter railroad, it has been made the central point for western immigration, and through the pluckiness of its business men has built itself into the best town on the western frontier for its size and condition.
Marshall now has a population of only about three or four hundred, but has several substantial buildings that look as if the people here had come to stay. Among the buildings we will mention a $3000 school house, five two- story brick stores, a Methodist church, a two- story building with hall above belonging to the Congregational church, two hotels, several store buildings of wood, three grain elevators, one grist mill, depot, engine house, etc., together with several fine dwellings of brick and wood. There are three lumber yards. We have a good brick yard.
Marshall became an incorporated village in 1876. The first action toward that end was taken at a mass meeting held at M. M. Marshall's drug store on the evening of Monday, December 27, 1875. Of that meeting J. P. Watson was chairman and C. H. Whitney secretary. It was the sense of those present that sections 4, 5 and 9 should be incorporated as the village of Marshall and J. W. Blake, D. F. Weymouth and R. M. Addison were named a committee to draft an incorporation act.
A bill that met the approval of the citizens was drawn up and introduced in the Legislature by Senator J. W. Blake in January. A petition favorable to the act and one remonstrating were circulated for signers and forwarded to the state capital. The bill was passed with little opposition and was signed by the governor February 17.
Provision was made in the incorporating act for the beginning of municipal government and C. A. Edwards, J. F. Reichert, C. H. Whitney, C. F. Case, Oren Drake, John Ward and J. A. Coleman were named to call the first election and attend to the preliminaries. The election was held March 10, par- ticipated in by fifty-four voters, and a set of village officers was chosen without opposition. The Council met for the first time on Saturday, March 18, 1876
Village government continued until 1901, and then Marshall was incorporated as a city. The action was taken as the result of a petition, signed by more than two-thirds of the voters, which had been presented to the judge of probate. On February 20, 1901, Judge L. M. Lange issued the requested order. The first election under city government was held April 2, 1901.
Following is a list of the officers chosen at each annual election, under both forms of government, from the time of incorporation to the present:
1876 President, John Ward; trustees, C. A. Edwards, M. E. Wilcox, S. H. Mott; recorder, W. M. Todd; treasurer, J. P. Watson; justice, Daniel Markham; constable, D. Bell.
1877 President, M. E. Wilcox; trustees, C. A. Edwards, Joshua Goodwin, S. H. Mott; recorder, \Y. M. Todd; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice,- Daniel Markham; constable, D. Bell.
1878 President, J. W. Blake; trustees, C. H. Richardson. 18 O. C. Gregg, G. M. Durst; recorder, W. M. Todd; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; constable, Edward Berg.
1879 President, J. W. Blake; trustees, J. F. Reichert, P. M. Addison, J. F. Remore; recorder, W. M. Todd; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, W. M. Todd; constable, R. F. Webster.
1880 President, J. W. Blake; trustees, W. M. Todd, J. F. Remore, R. M. Addison; recorder, V. B. Seward; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox.
1881 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, R. M. Addison, J. F. Remore, W. M. Todd; recorder, V. B. Seward; treasurer, G. M. Wilcox; justice, J. W. Blake; constable, O. A. Drake.
1882 President, E. L. Healy; trustees, A. C. Chittenden, J. P. Watson, M. H. Gibson; recorder, Walter Wakeman; treasurer, F. S. Wetherbee.
1883 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, J. G. Schutz, R. M. Addison, Olof Pehrson; recorder, C. H. Whitney; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, E. B. Jewett.
1884 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, J. G. Schutz, R. M. Addison, Olof Pehrson; recordi>i\ V. B. Seward; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox.
1885 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, R. M. Addison, Olof Pehrson, J. G. Schutz; recorder, H. A. Wilber; 20 treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, E. T. Mathews.
1886 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, J. G. Schutz, Olof Pehrson, G. E. Johnson; recorder, Louis Larson; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justices, C. H. Whitney, 21 D. G. Stewart.
1887 President, J. G. Schutz; trustees, D. Wilcox, S. Butturff, Olof Pehrson; recorder, Louis Larson; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, D. F. Weymouth.
1888 President, C. B. Tyler; trustees, J. W. Pearson, S. Butturff, Olof Pehrson; recorder, Louis Larson; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, D. G. Stewart
1889 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, J. G. Schutz, J. W. Williams, E. S. Frick; recorder, S. N. Harrington; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, E. B. Jewett.
1890 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, J. G. Schutz, J. W. Williams, E. S. Frick; recorder, S. N. Harrington; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, D. G. Stewart.
1891 President, M. Sullivan; trustees, J. G. Schutz, E. S. Frick, J. W. Williams; recorder, F. 'M. Healy; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, E. B. Jewett.
1892 President, R. M. Addison; trustees, E. S. Frick, C. F. Case, R. G. Curtis; recorder, F. M. Healy; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, D. G. Stewart.
1893 President, J. G. Schutz; trustees, C. F. Case, E. S. Frick, H. M. Langeland; recorder, F. M. Healy; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, D. A. Kennedy.
1894 President, C. F. Case; trustees, C. H. Richardson, H. M. Langeland, E. S. Frick; recorder, E. T. Mathews; treasurer, C. M. Wilcox; justice, D. G. Stewart
1895 President, C. M. Wilcox; trustees, H. M. Langeland, E. S. Frick, D. D. Forbes; recorder, J. C. Burchard; treasurer, C. E. Pat- terson; justice, D. A. Kennedy.
1896 President, A. C. Chittenden; trustees, H. M. Langeland, D. D. Forbes, J. N. Barkee; recorder, J. C. Burchard; treasurer, C. E. Patterson; justice, T. P. Baldwin.
1897 President, D. D. Forbes; trustees, H. M. Langeland, W. C. Kayser, Joshua Goodwin: recorder, J. C. Burchard; treasurer, F. W. Sickler; justice, D. A. Kennedy.
1898 President, V. B. Seward; trustees, J. G. Schutz, T. J. Baldwin, J. P. Pierard; recorder, J. C. Burchard; treasurer, C. C. Guernsey; justice, Walter Wakeman.
1899 President, V. B. Seward; trustees, J. G. Schutz, W. C. Kayser, R. C. Beach; recorder, J. C. Burchard; treasurer, C. C. Guernsey; justice, D. A. Kennedy.
1900 President, John E. Burchard; trustees, R. C. Beach, J. P. Pierard, M. W. Harden; recorder, Frank C. Whitney; treasurer, C. C. Guernsey; justice, Walter Wakeman.
1901 President, John E. Burchard; trustees, M. W. Harden, James Lawrence, R, C. Beach; recorder, H. R. Welsford; treasurer, C. C. Guernsey; justice, D. A. Kennedy.
1901 (city) -Mayor, John E. Burchard; 22 aldermen, 23 M. E. Mathews (two years), John L. Watson (one year), W. F. Bryant (two years), C'. H. Richardson (one year); recorder, W. C. Kayser; treasurer, C. C. Guernsey; justices, Walter Wakeman, D. A. Kennedy.
1902 Mayor, V. B. Seward; aldermen, J. H. Schneider, J. P. Pierard; recorder, W. C. Kayser; treasurer, E. S. Frick.
1903 Mayor, M. E. Mathews; aldermen, J. C. Burchard, W. P. Bryant, recorder, J. W. Humphrey; treasurer, E. "S. Frick; justice, Walter Wakeman.
1904 Mayor, F. M. Healy; aldermen, H. P. Fulton, Herman Schurz; recorder, John R. Gray; treasurer, R. M. Neill.
1905 Mayor, J. C. Burchard; aldermen, Robert Heilman, Peter White; recorder, John R Gray; treasurer, R. M. Neill; justices, Walter Wakeman,. C. L. Miles.
1906 Mayor, J. C. Burchard; aldermen, R. B. Daniel, Herman Schurz; recorder, John R. Gray; treasurer, R. M. Neill; justice, Harrison Barnes.
1907 Mayor, Spurgeon Odell; aldermen, H. M. Langeland, F. B. Sweet; recorder, John R. Gray, treasurer, R. M. Addison, Jr.; justice, Walter Wakeman.
1908 Mayor, Spurgeon Odell; aldermen, J. G. Schutz, Thomas E. Davis; recorder, C. P. Shepard; treasurer, C. H. Johnson; justice, Fred Adler.
1909 Mayor, Spurgeon Odell; aldermen, August Durrenberger, Peter White; recorder, C. P. Shepard; treasurer, O. K. Kiel; justice, W'alter Wakeman.
1910 Mayor, Thomas E. Davis; aldermen, J. G. Schutz, William Mullaney; recorder, C. P. Shepard; treasurer, Harris Persons; justices, J. W. Pike, Boyd Champlain.
1911 Mayor, Thomas E. Davis; aldermen, August Durrenberger, P. P. Jacobson; recorder, C. P. Shepard; treasurer, Harris Persons.
1912 Mayor, Thomas E. Davis; aldermen, J. G. Schutz, W. F. Mullaney; recorder, C. P. Shepard; treasurer, Theodore M. Thomas; justice, J. W. Pike.
For a year after the village was incorporated there was not much progress, due to the fact that the grasshoppers were still in the land. There were, however, a few business enterprises started in 1876, among them a general merchandise store by Olof Pehrson, blacksmith shop by Keyes & Blake, imple- ment business by P. F. Wise, drug store by Burgoync & Jewett, shoe shop by B. F. Jellison, feed mill by C. A. Edwards, drug store by M. M. Marshall, meat markets by B. Gibbs and D. Crowley, millinery stores by Mrs. Clemens and Mrs. Underhill, machinery business by S. J. Watkins, grain warehouses by H. B. Gary, C. A. Edwards and Addison & Mott, carpenter shop by I. Burrall.
When it became known that the grasshopper plague was a thing of the past, Marshall took rapid strides forward. Several new enterprises were started in 1877 and prospects for the future were bright. The Messenger of November 16, 1877, said: "This town is the busiest hamlet in the West. You can't, find a spot where your ears are not filled with the din of building. Houses spring up in a day or two, and our lumber yards can hardly ship in enough to supply the demand. You can expect to be run over next summer if you don't get up and dust."
The predicted boom came in 1878. Before the close of spring ten two-story brick business blocks had been erected, besides several frame business houses and many residences. Among the improvements of the year was the Messenger Block. Two banks were founded, two new brick yards were established, business firms of all kinds came into existence, and a number of professional men located in the village. A directory of business firms published at the close of 1878 listed the following:
Banks Owen & Dibble, Lyon County Bank (Strait, How & Tyler).
General Merchandise Chambers Brothers, Olof Pehrson, Addison & Mott, A. C. Chittenden, W. D. Hillyer, Schutz & Kyle, Bedbury.
Groceries Robert Waldron, E. L. Healy.
Clothing S. Keyser.
Hardware J. P. Watson, J. W. Williams.
Drugs Aldrich & Houston, C. M. Wilcox, Ole Quam.
Furniture G. A. Tracy, D. A. Mclntyre.
Jewelry J. Lohmiller, W. H. Wright, W. C. Kayser.
Meat Markets D. Crawley, L. Lavake, F. S. Wetherbee.
Book Store J. H. Schneider.
Grain Warehouses Addison & Mott, H. B. Gary, C. A. Edwards, Williams & Webster, M. M. Marshall.
Feed Mill J. W. Blake.
Lumber Yards Langdon & Laythe, Horton & Hamilton (W. M. Todd, agent), Addison & Mott.
Farm Machinery Addison & Mott, O. H. Hatlestad, Edwards & Tripp.
Shoe Shops J. P. Pierard, Sear.
Harness Shop F. Watson.
Feed Stores A. C. Chittenden, F. S. Wether- bee.
Bakeries James Barron, Davis.
Hotels J. Johnson, J. Bagley, Merchants Exchange, Marshall House (Thomas Watson), Prairie House.
Restaurants James Barron, Montgomery.
Saloons John J. Laudenslager, Farrington & Company, E. Mahoney.
Billiard Hall Merchants Exchange.
Livery Stables L. B. Nichols, McNiven Brothers, Bennett & Hunt.
Brick Yards C. H. Whitney, W. A. Crooker, J. Lockey.
Blacksmith Shops Keyes & Ryan, R. Curtis, M. H. Gibson.
Wagon Shops H. S. Adams, Ellsbury.
Gun Shop C. A. Haskel.
Paint Shop Skilling Brothers.
Candy Manufacturer Wright.
Barber Shop C. E. Porter.
Millinery Mrs. Remington, Miss Farnsworth.
Newspaper Marshall Messenger (C. F. Case).
Lawyers E. B. Jewett, E. A. Gove, D. F, Weymouth, A. C. Forbes, M. E. Mathews Andrews.
Physicians Drs. J. W. Houston, J. W. Andrews, C. E. "Persons.
Dentist Dr. E. D. Allison.
Land Office Winona & St. Peter Railroad Company.
Insurance Office C. L. Van Fleet.
Marshall increased in size and importance during 1879. In 1880 the value of the building improvements amounted to $85,000. The federal census that year gave the village a population of 961. During the next few years there was little increase in population, the census of 1885 showing that there were 986 people living within the corporate limits. But the town made great progress in other ways and developed into one of the best villages of Southwestern Minnesota. A business directory published in C. F. Case's History of Lyon County in 1884 was as follows:
Mercantile A. C. Chittenden, J. G. Schutz, F. S. Wetherbee, Olof Pehrson, Edwards & Company, general stores; E. L. Healy, Humphrey & Gail, J. W. Williams, groceries and crockery; J. P. Watson, R. M. Addison, hardware and machinery; Youmans Brothers, Horton Lumber Company, lumber yards; Louis Janda, shoe store; C. M. Wilcox, Walter Wakeman, A. B. Sweet, drug stores; S. Butturff, furniture; W. C. Kayser, books, stationery and tobacco; M. Hooker, stationery and tobacco; Mrs. Hillyer, millinery; J. Price, John Russell, Mrs. Hicks, bakery and restaurants; Fred Watson, harness; Woodruff & Wilber, F. Weikle, meat markets; Parsons & Wise, clothing.
Professions C. E. Persons, J. Armington, A. Poaps, physicians; E. D. Allison, dentist; Forbes & Seward, M. E. Mathews, M. B. Drew, D. F. Weymouth, E. B. Jewett, E. A. Gove, attorneys; Rev. J. B. Fairbank, Rev. J. W. Powell, pastors; G. M. Durst, Miss Mikkelson, Miss Downie, Mrs. G. M. Durst, teachers.
Trades E. J. Harrison, marble cutter; Arthur M. Nichols, R. B. Vonderamith, B. Vosburg, painters; J. McGandy, photographer; M. H. Gibson, George Heinmiller, C. J. Price, R. Curtis, blacksmiths; S. Marshall, wagon maker; J. B. Murray, O. C. Phillips, barbers.
Miscellaneous Marshall Messenger by C. F. Case, Lyon County News by C. C. Whitney; Van Dusen & Company (E. Frick, agent), Porter Milling Company (W. A. Hunter, agent), elevators; T. King, grist mill; L. Nichols, livery; W. Keith, W. Simmons, H. Hoyt, hotels; George E. Johnson, stock buyer; B. Wright, feed mill; Peterson & Company, tailors; D. G. Stewart, sewing machines; C. M. Wilcox, express agent; H. M. Burchard, railroad land agent; T. A. Woodruff, railroad agent; Van Winkle, telegraph operator; Charles Kent, collection agency; Strait & Company, creamery; Woodbury & Frick, skating rink.
Marshall kept pace with the develop- ment of the surrounding country during the late eighties and had a population of 1203 when the census of 1890 was taken. The years 1890-91-92 were exceptionally prosperous ones for the village. The building improvements in 1890 were valued at $55,000, mostly expended for residences. The next year the value of improvements was placed at $125,000. That year a system of electric lights was installed by Parsons Brothers, general merchants, at a cost of $6000.
The village installed waterworks and electric lighting systems in 1894. At a special election to vote on the question of issuing $25,000 bonds for the purpose, bonds were carried by seventy-three majority out of 308 votes cast. E. T. Sykes secured the contract on a bid of $24,340. The waterworks were in op- eration early in December and the lights were turned on December 21, 1894.
There was little advancement during the panic years 1893 and 1894, but in 1895 building improvements to the value of $50,000 were made. They included brick business blocks put up by T. J. Baldwin, C. F. Case and W. S. Dibble. The census of 1895 showed a population of 1744, a gain of 541 in five years.
Rapid strides forward were made in the late nineties and the village began to take on metropolitan airs. A telephone system was installed in the summer of 1897, with forty-three initial subscribers. During the past decade progress has been marked, although increase in population has not been great. Marshall's population was 2088 in 1900, 2243 in 1905, and 2152 in 1910.
Marshall's history has been remark- ably free from destructive fires. On only two occasions has the fire fiend gained the mastery.
The most destructive fire in the town's history occurred on the night of September 24, 1902, bringing a loss of about $100,000. The three-story brick building owned by T. J. Baldwin and occupied by Baldwin & Loveridgc's department store was destroyed. The law office of V. B. Seward and Odd Fellows hall on the second floor were destroyed, as was also Masonic hall on the third floor. A small frame building adjoining, owned by W. S. Dibble and occupied by Blakeslee's meat market, was crushed by the falling walls from the larger building. The fire burned fiercely and for a time threatened to destroy the whole business section of the city.
The second fire of consequence oc- curred May 15, 1905, and brought a loss of $40,000. The double store building in Syndicate Block owned by Mrs. E. D. Parsons and the store of P. H. Roise & Company were destroyed, as well as the furnishings of Masonic hall and the dental parlors of Dr. S. E. Whitmore. Losses were also sustained by J. N. Barkee, furniture; Wilson Mercantile Company, V. B. Gits & Company, Dr. A. D. Hard, Thompson's cigar factory, W. A. Hawkins and M. E. Mathews, attorneys.
ONE of the first institutions to he provided after the founding of a town is the public school. In Marshall the school came almost simultaneous with the founding of the village. The first school, supported by subscription, was conducted in the winter of 1872-73. It was held in the little office building erected by W. M. Todd. G. H. Darling was the teacher for a time and he was succeeded by Walter Wakeman. Only a few pupils were in attendance and the school was of short duration.
School district No. 8, then embracing the north half of Lake Marshall township and the southern tier of sections of Fairview township, had been created by the Board of County Commissioners January 2, 1872 before Marshall had a place on the map. The district was organized in 1873 and the first public school was taught on the second floor of the building erected by the Congre- gational church society. That building- was used for school purposes until 1875. Miss Diantha Wheeler, who in October, 1875, became the wife of G. M. Durst, was the first teacher and she had in her charge thirty or forty pupils. The first members of the Board of Education were John Coleman, J. W. Blake and C. H. Whitney.
A four months' winter term was begun November 10, 1873, with Miss Lovelace as teacher. Miss Wheeler again became teacher and was in charge until June, 1874, when she was succeeded by G. M. Durst. At that time the enrollment had reached sixty pupils. Besides those mentioned the other teachers employed during the time the school was conducted under the ordinary district plan were Ada Webster (Mrs. J. W. Williams), Jennie C. French (Mrs. J. W. Andrews), Miss L. A. Bailey (Mrs. W. M. Todd) and Addie Gary (Mrs. C. E. Persons).
In March, 1874, a lull passed the Legislature authorizing the Marshall school district to issue bonds to the amount of $2500 for the purpose of erecting a school house, and in October of that year the people of Marshall decided to build. In the summer of 1875 a two-story octagonal building, forty feet in diameter, with a seating capacity of 150, was completed. Its cost was about $2800. Many taxpayers thought it an extravagant expenditure, but within three years it was not large enough to accommodate the pupils enrolled.
At a school meeting in September, 1878, it was decided, by a vote of 60 to 0 to appropriate $1300 to build an addition to the school house. A building committee was chosen, composed of O. C. Gregg, C. H. Richardson and J. S. Dewey, and in October the addition was ready for occupancy. Its dimensions were 22x40 feet, two stories high. The school house then contained four rooms with a seating capacity of 250 pupils.
A reorganization, under the inde- pendent district plan, was effected October 1, 1878; the school was graded, and four departments were maintained. The first Board of Education under the reorganization was composed of Jonathan Owens. A. C. Forbes, C. H. Whit- ney, C H. Richardson, J. S. Dewey and O. C. Gregg. 2 J. B. Gibbons was the first superintendent of the graded schools and his assistants in 1878 were Addie Gary ami Hattie Owen.
The school population increased rapidly and within a few years the facilities were taxed to their utmost. Early in 1886 the voters of the district authorized a bond issue and in the fall of that year a new building was erected at a cost of $15,000. That structure was used until destroyed by fire twelve years later. A high school course was added, was made a four-year course in 1890, and the Marshall school was raised to the first class in 1896. The first high school class was graduated in 1888.
Again in 1891 the school house was filled to overflowing and the voters authorized a bond issue of $6000 to provide additional facilities. A four-room ward school house was erected in 1S92 south of the Northwestern railroad tracks and was occupied for the first time in September of that year. J. D. Carroll was the contractor. The total cost of the building, heating plant and furnishings was $8232. The building was sold to Dr. F. D. Gray for hospital purposes in October, 1910, for $3000.
The high school building erected in 1880 was destroyed by fire on the night of December 8, 1898. The loss was placed at $20,000, covered by insurance to the amount of $13,000. Immediately steps were taken to rebuild. Plans for a new building, drawn by W. B. Dunnell, were accepted by the Board of Education in January, 1899, and a little later the contract was let to the Angus McLeocl Company, of Minneapolis, on a bid of $39,737, which was later increased, because of changes in plans, to $41,000. A $40,000 bond issue was made and the building was completed and occupied in December. The cost of the building, heating, plumbing, ventilating, furnishings, etc., was about $60,600. It is one of the largest and finest school buildings in the state.
At the present writing (1912) 539 students are enrolled in the Marshall schools. Including the superintendent, twenty instructors are employed. The school ranks among the best in Minnesota.
Besides the public schools, a Catholic- school and a business college are conducted in Marshall.
St. Joseph's convent and academy has been in operation since March 1, 1900, conducted by the sisters of the Order of St. Joseph. It has grown to considerable prominence. In 1899 Mother Seraphine and Mother Celestine came to Marshall and their investigations led to the founding of the school. The Ma- honey residence was purchased for a school building, and on March 1, 1900, the school was opened, in charge of Sister Wilfrida, of St. Joseph's Academy, of St. Paul, assisted by Sisters Celesia and DuRosaire. Several additions have been made to the original school house, and a large number of students receive instruction.
Seven church societies have organizations in Marshall and all of them have houses of worship. The churches are, in the order of their organization, Congregationalist, Methodist, Catholic, German Lutheran, Evangelical Association, Episcopal and Presbyterian. Three other societies have at one time and another been represented in Marshall but are not now. They were the Baptist, Icelandic Lutheran and Norwegian Lutheran.
The first religious services held in Marshall were conducted by Rev. W. T. Ellis, Methodist, of Lynd. They were held in the engineers' office in the summer of 1872. The next services were held a short time later by a Congregationalist minister, and the Congregational church was the first organized in the village.
In the summer of 1872 Rev. E. H. Alden, of Waseca, pioneer home missionary of the Congregational church, came to Marshall and made arrangements for organizing a church. At the time the site was occupied by only two buildings and a tent. The tent was the property of Captain Herrick and Major Filkins, and in it they conducted a saloon. It was the only available "building" in town for religious worship, and in it on several occasions Rev. Alden preached to the people of Marshall and vicinity. He later held services in the engineers' building and remained in Marshall during 1872.
The Congregational church was organized by Rev. Alden on October 6, 1872, with the following members: Mr. and Mrs. Seth W. Taylor, Mr. and Mrs. H. P. Gibbs, Mrs. J. W. Elliott and Mrs. Cook. The first board of trustees consisted of Walter Wakeman. Seth W. Taylor and John W. Elliott. The first treasurer was J. P. Watson, who was also the first choirster. Mr. Buchanan was the first Sunday School superintendent and had charge of a union school until the Methodist school was organized in 1873.
Immediately after the organization of the Congregational church, in the fall of 1872, a start was made on a building to be used as a house of worship. It was begun in 1872 but was not completed until the following spring. Rev. Alden and Walter Wakeman constituted the building committee. The structure was a two-story store building erected at the corner of Main and Fourth Streets. The lower floor was occupied by a store, and the upper floor was used for school purposes during week days and by the church society on Sundays. The Congregationalists occupied this building until 1879, when it was sold to H. B. Gary for $1000.
Rev. George Spaulding became pastor of the church in May, 1873, and served until August, 1874. The first communion service was held in September, 1873. The next pastor was Rev. H. C. Simmons, installed in September, 1875, who was in charge until September, 1879. During the grasshopper days untiring efforts were required to maintain the organization. The members were few, times were exceedingly hard, and great energy was required to keep the church in existence.
Better times came upon the community and early in August, 1S7S, the Congregationalists began work on a new church edifice, which was completed the next spring. The building committee was composed of Rev. H. C. Simmons, chairman; J. P. Watson, M. M. Marshall and A. C. Chittenden. The new church, which cost about $4000, was dedicated free from debt May 18, 1879, by Rev. Dr. McG. Dana, of St. Paul, assisted by Rev. Champlain and Rev. Moses.
The church completed in 1879 served the need's of the society until 1902, when the need was felt for a larger building. About $6000 were expended in rebuilding, the work being in charge of a building committee composed of M. W. Harden, chairman; James Lawrence, R. R. Bumford, Mrs. W. S. Dibble and Mrs. H. M. Langland. The corner stone was laid October 4, 1902, and the church was formally opened June 28, 1903.
While the Congregational church was the first organized in Marshall, the Methodist, officially organized in 1873, is in reality the oldest church society in the city. Its organization was a con- tinuation of the Methodist church of Lynd, which had come into existence several years before and the jurisdiction of which extended to the village of Marshall. The history of the Methodist church of Marshall dates back to the very earliest settlement of Lyon county; in fact the first settlers came for the purpose of founding a church and school in the frontier region.
According to the records of the Methodist church, on September 26, 1867, A. W. Muzzy, hie daughter, Sophia, wile of Rev. C. F. Wright, member of the Red River Conference of the Methodist Episcopal church, and L. Langdon and family took possession of Lynd and vicinity in the name of the Lord by establishing religious worship. On the following Sabbath they instituted divine worship and maintained it regularly thereafter every Sabbath.
In November, 1867, the worshippers were reinforced by the arrival of the family of Luman Ticknor, and the following spring by the family of George Cummins. The Methodists of the little settlement organized a church society in October, 1868, and for the first time had the services of a regular clergyman, in the person of Rev. C. F. Wright. On March 24, 1869, the body was officially recognized by Presiding Elder N. Hobart of the Mankato district. The church was attached to the Redwood circuit and was put under the pastoral care of Rev. Wright, who was in charge until 1870.
The conference of 1870 created a new charge, designated Lynd and Lake Shetek, with Rev. A. R. Riley as pastor. The same year a Sunday School was organized and a log meeting house was built at Lower Lynd. In 1871 the church was moved to Upper Lynd and Rev. A. Eastman became pastor. A frame building was put up, used for a church for a short time, and then moved to Lower Lynd and transformed into a dwelling. Thereafter for a time the Methodists worshipped in the Lynd school house, but in 1872 the Methodist charge was moved to the new village of Marshall. That was during the pastorate of Rev. J. H. McKee, with Rev. W. T. Ellis as local preacher.
Services were occasionally held in Marshall in 1872 and early in 1873 by Revs. W. T. Ellis and 6. C. Gregg. The church organization was perfected August 17. 1873. 9 Rev. Gregg became the pastor of the Marshall church, and the Lake Shetek and Saratoga appoint- ments were set off. Rev. George Galpin became pastor in 1874. and under his charge substantial progress was made by the society. In the fall of 1874 a parsonage was erected on Fifth Street, opposite the location of the future church. During the suriimer of 1875 a little chapel was erected on the north end of the present school grounds, on lots donated by the townsite owners. The church, dedicated August 15. 1875, cost about $800, and in it the Methodists worshipped until 1886. The little building was later moved to another location and remodeled into a residence.
Increases in membership made necessary a larger church building, and in 1885 steps were taken to build. On July 20, 1885. the board of trustees decided to erect a church to cost not more than $3000, but work was not to commence until $2500 were raised. Almost that amount was raised before the year ended. A location at the corner of Lyons and Fourth Streets was purchased of E. B. Jewett and on December 18, 1885. plans and specifications were accepted.
The church was erected in 1886, largely through the efforts of B. J. Heagle, Seth Johnson. M. Sullivan and Dr. E. D. Allison. Its cost was about $7000. The church was dedicated November 14, the services being conducted by Rev. Robert Forbes. Rev. J. W. Powell and Rev. E. R. Lathrop. Rev. J. A. Cullen was the resident pastor at the time. A new parsonage was erected in 1905 at a cost of $5200.
A larger building was demanded 1909 and on May 29 of that year a contract was let to George D. Carroll to remodel the building. A building committee composed of M. E. Drake, Peter Walker, H. B. Loomis, W. G. Hunter, George Caley and Rev. S. A. Cook was appointed and the work was rushed to completion. The cost of reconstructing the building was $10,200. It was dedicated Sunday, September 19, 1909. by Rev. Dr. F. B. Cowgill. the district superintendent, assisted by Rev. J. W. Powell and Rev. S. A. Cook, the local pastor.
The third church society organized in Marshall was the Baptist. During the summer of 1878 Rev. W. H. Schwartz, of Kenosha, Wisconsin, came to Marshall and in August organized a church with ten members. The officers of the society were J. M. Lockey, deacon: J. P. DeMattos, clerk; C. B. Todd, J. M. Lockey and B. H. Gibbs, trustees. A lot was purchased with a view to erecting a church edifice, but that was not done and the life of the society was short. During the life of the church services were held in the public school building.
The Catholic church Church of the Most Holy Redeemer was organized in 1885. Several years before thai time, however, services were occasionally held. The first mass was held by Father Tori in 1879, and thai early there was talk of building a church.
There were only a few families of the faith in Marshall in 1884, but that year it was decided to erect a church. The decision was reached at the time of a visit in May, 1884, by Bishop John Ireland and Fathers Cornelius and Devos. W. Blake donated two lots east of the river, the business men of Marshall contributed nearly $1000, and members of the faith contributed liberally. The building was erected at a cost of about $1000 under the direction of a building committee composed of Father Devos, of Ghent, and Messrs. Janda ami Humphrey. The building, though not entirely completed, was occupied for the first time November 30, 1884.
The church* was organized in 1885. The following were heads of the families representing the initial membership: John Hanlon, Daniel Minnick, Con Meehan, Richard Blake, P. W. Mullaney, James Smith, Owen Myron, Thomas Welch, Mr. Vergote, Mr. Loke, John Casserley, Pat Casserley, John Ruane, Pat Quigley, Philip Kennedy, John Zeigler and John Lewis. John Hanlon and Daniel Minnick were the first trustees.
Prior to 1890 there was not a resident pastor and services were only occasionally held, conducted by Father Edward Lee. Improvements were made on the church in the spring of 1889 and the interior was completed. The church was incorporated in October, 1890, the articles being signed by Archbishop John Ireland, August Ravoux, J. E. Devos, John Haidon and Louis Janda.
The German Evangelical Lutheran church of Marshall is one of the old religious societies of the city. About 1877 the German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of New Ulm sent Rev. Christ Boettcher as a missionary to Lyon and adjoining counties to minister to the German Lutherans at the expense of the Synod. Thereafter until a church was organized at Marshall in 1888 ministers of the faith, Rev. Boettcher and Rev. W. Shechietal, held services in the county.
The church society was organized in 1888 and Rev. R. Poet like has ever since been the pastor. The initial membership was represented by the families of the following: Theodore Tessmer, C. Mellenthin, G. Schultz, William Marx, Fred Goelcow and P. Murch.
For a number of years the Lutheran society did not have great strength, had no house of worship in Marshall, and had irregular services. In June, 1896, dissatisfaction arose among some of the members, who left the church and organized a new society under the protection of the Ohio Synod of the German Evangelical Lutheran church. The trustees of the new organization were Fred Mellenthin. August Mellenthin and August Schwabe. The organization was brought about through the labors of Rev. W. Ehwald, who preached in and around Marshall from the fall of 1896 until the next spring. During his pas- torate the first steps to form the organization were taken, and during the short pastorate of his successor, Rev. H. Drews, it was perfected. Rev. G. R. "Wannemacher succeeded as pastor in the fall of 1897.
Lots for a church building were purchased on Lyons Street in April, 1897, and that summer the church was erected. It was dedicated on Sunday. July 18. by Rev. Ernst, of St. Paul.
Both branches of the German Lutheran church continued to maintain organizations until the summer of 1908, when a reconciliation was effected. A reorganization was made at that time by thirty families and services by the combined organization were held for the first time in .June. 1908, conducted by Rev. R. Poethke.
The Salem Evangelical Association, another German church society, was also organized in 1888. Rev. Loeven, of the Dakota Conference, began to preach to members of the faith in Marshall and vicinity, and, although there were only a few families, a class was soon organized. Rev. Loeven was followed in turn by Rev. Preise, Rev. G. A. E. Leppert and Rev. S. B. Goetz during 1888 and 1889, though none of these was a resident pastor. During the first twelve years of the church's history there was no church edifice and during the greater part of that time services were held in the Ehler school house.
The congregation grew and there was a strong desire for a church home. Dining the pastorate of Rev. H. A. Seder funds for a church edifice were raised. In April, 1899, the society was incorporated under the name of Salem Congregation of the Evangelical Association. Two lots on Main Street opposite the court house were purchased and the work of building was begun in July. It was completed in January, 1900, and was dedicated, free from debt, on June 10 by Bishop S. C. Breyfogel. of Reading. Pennsylvania. The cost of the building was about $2500.
People of the Episcopal faith in Marshall held services irregularly and had an organization in the early days, being ministered to occasionally by the following pastors from other charges: Edward Livermore, 1874-76: E. G. Hunter. 1876-79; H. J. Gurr. 1879. Thereafter until the society was reorganized in 1889 no pastor was assigned to the Marshall community. During that period several abortive efforts were made to effect an organization and build a church.
Bishop Gilbert, of St. Paul, and Rector Thompson, of St. Peter, held services in one of the other church buildings on July 8, 1888, and there the start toward the organization of a society and the erection of a church was made. To solicit funds and attend to the preliminary work a building committee was appointed as follows: Orrin Paige, chairman; E. E. Parsons, secretary; J. W. Williams, treasurer; R. M. Addison and E. S. Reishus.
St.James Episcopal church was organized by Bishop Gilbert .July 21, 1889, but was not made a parish until May 23, 1892. In November, 1889. a place of worship was fitted up in the hall of the Williams Building, a pastor was assigned to the charge, and monthly services were held. Members of the church worked hard to secure the necessary funds and in June, 1890,. they had raised $1000. At that time Bishop Gilbert visited Marshall and at a church meeting it was decided to proceed with the building of a church.
Three lots at the corner of Main and Fifth Streets were donated by Messrs. Stewart, Jenkins and Blake and the building was commenced in September, 1890. The corner stone was laid October 7 and then work was stopped because of lack of funds. It was put under way again in the spring of 1892, and in time a fine stone building, costing about $7000, was completed. It was dedicated by Rev. W. P. TenBroeck in October, 1893.
For many years the Icelandic Lutherans maintained a church organization in Marshall. For a time services were held in private residences, hut in the summer of 1890 the members undertook the erection of a church edifice. Subscriptions were solicited and in the fall of that year a church was erected west of the Great Northern railroad tracks at a cost of about $1500. The next year a stone foundation was put under the building and the corner stone was laid with ceremonies by Rev. Thalaksson on November 15, 1891.
In the cyclone of August 8, 1892, the Icelandic church building' was demolished and the same fall a new building took its place on the old foundation. Services were held many years, but finally the attendance dwindled and the organization went out of existence. For some time before the pulpit had been filled by the pastor of the Minneota church. The building was purchased in March, 1911, by T. R. Cummings and remodeled into a residence.
The first Presbyterian Church of Marshall was organized June 28, 1891, under the direction of Rev. R. N. Adams, the synodical superintendent of home missions, with thirty-one members. Malcolm C. McNiven and Reese Davis were the first elders,and the following were the first officers: Mary A. Davis, clerk; J. P. Watson, treasurer; A. R. Chace, D. D. Forbes and James McNiven, trustees. Until the church was erected services were held in Chittenden's Hall. Rev. Clarence G. Miller was the first pastor.
Steps were at once taken to erect a house of worship. Two lots were purchased on Lyons Street, opposite the school house, and in the fall of 1891 a building. 24x28 feet, now used as the lecture room, was completed. Its cost, including furnishings, was about $2000. The dedication services were conducted February 14, 1892, by Rev. John Barbour, of Mankato. The Presbyterian church as it stands today was constructed in 1900 and the first services were held therein May 27. It was dedicated June 24.
For a short time the Norwegian Lutherans had an organization in Marshall, the church having been organized about 1899. Services were held in the German Lutheran church by Rev. Kleven, of Minneota. The society was not very strong and soon ceased to exist.
Marshall is well represented by secret and fraternal orders. There are in existence the following societies, most of which have also auxiliary organizations: Masonic, Grand Army, Work-men, Modern Woodmen, Royal Arcanum, Maccabees, Foresters, Modern Brotherhood and Yeomen. Several other well known societies have in times past had organizations in the city. among them the Odd Fellows, Knights of Pythias and Legion of Honor.
The oldest order in Marshall is Delta Lodge No. 119, A. F. & A. M., which was organized under dispensation November 16, 1874. The organizer was Thomas Montgomery, of St. Peter, and he was assisted by A. Mardin and Dr. Berry, of New Ulm. The first officers were as follows: H. J. Tripp, W. M.; Joshua Goodwin, S. V. Groesbeck, G. M. Durst, secretary; M. E. Wilcox, treasurer; George E. Nichols, B. A. Grubb, L. F. Pickard.
Lona Chapter No. 21, Order Eastern Star, was named in honor of Mrs. Lona Todd, who had died a short time before the lodge was organized. It came into existence March 4, 1891, with thirty charter members. 18 It was instituted by Charles L. Davis, of Red Wing, grand patron of the Eastern Star.
A dispensation for Marshall Chapter No. 65, Royal Arch Masons, was granted in April, 1898. The lodge started with nearly forty members and the following - first officers: John E. Burchard, high priest; Clarence M. Boutelle, king; M. E. Mathews, scribe. The chapter was constituted November 29. 1898.
A commandery of Knights Templar was put under dispensation July 5, 1901, with John E. Burchard. John S. Ren- ninger and Clarence M. Boutelle as principal officers. Marshall Commandery No. 28 was instituted November 8, 1901. by Eminent Commander Joseph Bobletter.
Marshall's second fraternal order was Good Samaritan Lodge No. 73, Independent Order Odd Fellows. A preliminary meeting of Odd Fellows was held October 3, 1879, and steps were then taken to organize. The lodge was instituted December 18 of that year with the following named six charter members: .J. E. Maas, A. T. Gamble, C. H. Richardson, J. H. Williams, S. O. Weston and C. W. Andrews. The lodge had an existence of twenty-nine years and surrendered its charter December 22, 1908.
A Rebekah lodge, auxiliary to the Odd Fellows, was maintained for a number of years. As the result of a surprise party given members of Good Samaritan Lodge by wives of the members early in 1895, application was made for a charter for the auxiliary. Surprise Lodge No. 113, Rebekahs, was organized March 5, 1895.
One of the most highly respect ed orders in Marshall is D. F. Markham Post No. 7, Grand Army of the Republic, which has existed since 1881. So early as 1875 an attempt was made by the soldiers of the Civil War to form a post of the G. A. R. or an independent organization, but it resulted in failure.
In the spring of 1881 the matter was again agitated, and this time the venture resulted in success. A petition for organization was signed by thirty-eight soldiers and forwarded to headquarters at Stillwater. The post was mustered in July 20, 1881, by Department Commander Adam Marty, with eleven charter members, as follows: J. W. Blake, who became the firsl post commander; J. M. Vaughn, W. T. Maxson, C. C. Whitney, John Dewey, S. Webster, G. W. Mossman, John Laudenslager, C. E. Porter, A. D. Morgan and B. Vosberg. Thirty-four comrades were mustered in during the next few months and on the first of the year 1882 the membership was forty-five.
Camp Phil Kearney No. 21. Sons of Veterans, had an organization for a number of years, but was finally disbanded. It was mustered in April 23, of 1886 , by Adjutant I.. E, Hale of Minneapolis, with about twenty charter members.
D. F. Markham Women's Relief Corps, was organized March 15, 1890, and instituted by Mrs. Sarah S. Evans. The order began with a membership of nineteen.
Marshall Lodge No. 125, Ancient Older United Workmen, was instituted Augusl 21, 1890, by Grand Master Workman C'. H. Botkin with ten charter members. The Lodge was formally organized September 4.
The Workmen auxiliary, Mizpah Lodge No. 53, Degree of Honor, was instituted January 23, 1896, with a membership of twenty-eight.
One of the Marshall lodges that flourished for a number of years but which has surrendered its charter was Marshall Lodge No. 89, Knights of Pythias. It was instituted July 23, 1891, by Grand Chancellor J,. P. Hunt, of Mankato, with twenty-eight charter members. Marshall Division No. 9, Uniform Rank. Knights of Pythias, was instituted January 17, 1896. with twenty- nine charter members.
Marshall Camp No. 1548, Modern Woodmen of America, was organized on the evening of August 3, 1891. under the direction of Deputy Head Consul H. W. Noble. It began with a small member- ship, 29 but it developed into a popular order and has had a flourishing existence of twenty-one years.
Artesian Council No. 1606, Royal Arcanum, began life March 20, 1895. It was instituted by H. W. Mead, deputy grand regent of the state, assisted by Secretary G. A. Ives, of Minneapolis.
Marshall Council No. 108, Legion of Honor, was instituted March 24, 1897, with twenty-one charter members, and had a short existence.
Marshall Tent No. 75, Knights of the Maccabees, Avas organized April 25, 1S98. with nineteen charter members.
Columbus Court No. 835, Catholic Order of Foresters, was organized in April, 1899, with twenty-five charter members.
Isabella Court No. 430, Women's Catholic Order of Foresters, was organ- ized in December, 1899. The organizer was Mrs. Mary Martin and the court was installed by Mrs. Annie Cummings.
Eureka Lodge No. 532, Modern Brotherhood of America, was organized May 15. 1899, with forty-eight charter members.
Marshall Homestead No. 639, Brotherhood American Yeomen, was organized early in 1903.
Thirty-two years ago the foundation for Marshall's public library was laid. On February 11, 1880. the Village Council authorized the establishment of a public library and made a tax levy of one mill on the dollai all that the law then permitted for its support. The president of the Council at the same time named the following persons a Board of Directors with authority to establish the library: C. J. Pickert, S. D. How. C. F. Case, A. C. Forbes, Miss Cynthia Weymouth, Mrs. J. P. Watson. Mrs. R. M. Addison and Mrs. J. W. Blake.
A one-mill tax was levied the next year and funds were raised by dramatic entertainments, so that the Library Board had $420.16 in its treasury. The Board failed to agree on a plan, the money was put at interest, and for several years after the initial step was taken a library did not materialize.
The matter was again taken up late in 1885, when it was found the Library fund amounted to about $470. The Village Council then decided to purchase books and found the institution. Vacancies on the Library Board were filled, and Messrs. Case, Tibbals, Durst and Tyler were named a committee to purchase books. Walter Wakeman was made librarian and the books were kept at his store. The library was opened January 1, 1880, with five hundred volumes on hand. It continued until replaced by the Carnegie library in 1903, supported by tax levies. Reading rooms were established, and, considering its limited resources, became quite popular.
In February, 1902, the Ait History Club became interested in the establishment of a Carnegie library and wrote the philanthropist. A year later .Mr. Carnegie offered to donate $10,000, providing the village would furnish a site and bind itself to expend $1000 annually on maintenance. The offer was accepted at a public meeting held .March 4, 1903. The site at the corner of Lyons and Third Streets was purchased for $2500, and in July. 1903, the contract for the erection of the building was let to H. P. Fulton on a bid of $9400. It was constructed under the supervision of a building committee composed of M. Sullivan, M. W. Harden and W. S. Dibble. The Marshall library is one of the best institutions of the kind in Southwestern Minnesota.
THE FIRE DEPARTMENT
The Marshall Fire Department has developed from small beginnings. Prior to 1879 the village was without fire protection, except that afforded by water in several wells and the willingness of the citizens to apply it. The first action by the village authorities to provide means of protection came in February, 1879, when a box was erected near the town pump and filled with buckets. A meeting to organize a volunteer fire department at that time was held, but small interest was taken and no company was formed.
Three hundred fifty feet of hose was purchased in December, 1879, to be attached to the town pump in case of fire. This purchase led to the formation of the first fire company. A public meeting was held at the Merchants Exchange on the evening of December 20, when sentiment was found to be unanimous in favor of forming a fire company. M. E. Wilcox. J. G. Schutz and C. H. Richardson were named a committee to confer with the village authorities.
At a meeting of the Village Council December 29 provision was made for organizing a company of five men, who should have charge of the apparatus and be in command at fires. Such a company was formed with J. G. Schutz as chief and C. H. Richardson. S. Webster, Stanley Addison and E. L. Healy as the other members. A hook and ladder truck and buckets were a little later added to the equipment.
The pioneer fire fighting company was handicapped by lack of equipment and was not long maintained. The News of January 16, 1885, said: "The only semblance of fire apparatus is a light truck, carrying a few ladders and hooks. Something efficient is demanded." In February, 1888, a number of Diamond hand grenades were purchased and placed in accessible positions about the village. Marshall's fire fighting ap- paratus was indeed primitive until a progressive step was taken in 1890 and an efficient force organized.
The organization of Marshall's Fire Department came as a result of a conflagration that brought a loss of $7000. At a meeting of the Village Council January 10, 1890, it was decided to erect an engine house and purchase a fire engine, hose and other necessary apparatus to protect property. J. G. Schutz and J. W. Williams were chosen by the village authorities to carry out the plans.
The engine house, used also as a city hall, was erected in the summer of 1890, the steam engine was put in service in July, and a reservoir was excavated on the village lots to furnish water. The fire department was organized July 14, 1890, with twenty-five members.
When the waterworks system was installed in 1895, the steam engine was discarded and modern fire fighting apparatus was procured. A reorganization of the department was effected in the summer of 1895, and the same organization has been maintained ever since. New material was added in 1899, and additions have frequently been made since that time.
Late in 1911 the fire house and city hall was rebuilt and enlarged and the department has one of the finest homes maintained by a volunteer department in Minnesota. The personnel of the department is also excellent, and the fact that Marshall has sustained few losses by fire is due largely to the work of the fire fighters.
Marshall has three banking institutions, two chartered by the national government and one conducted under the state banking laws. They are the Lyon County National Bank, the First National Bank, and the Marshall State Bank. All are ably conducted institutions, enjoy the confidence of the public, and are in flourishing condition.
The first bank established in Marshall is defunct. It was the Bank of Marshall (later a state bank), which opened its doors late in April, 1878. It was founded as a private institution by W. S. Dibble, who was the manager, and Jonathan Owen. It was conducted under the firm name of Owen & Dibble until the spring of 1883, when Mr. Dibble became sole owner. Until 1890 the bank was housed in a frame building and then was moved into a brick block erected by the owner.
The bank was a popular institution and a flourishing business was built up by Mr. Dibble. It became a state bank, with a capital stock of $25,000, in the spring of 1891. The bank was discontinued April 11, 1900, Mr. Dibble at that time disposing of the business to the First National Bank.
The second bank founded in Marshall and the oldest now in existence was the Lyon County Bank later reorganized as the Lyon County National Bank. It was founded as a private institution, with a paid-up capital of $25,000, and began business late in August, 1878. The officers and owners at the time of founding were H. B. Strait (who was at the time a member of Congress), president; C. B. Tyler, vice president; S. D. How, cashier; and D. L. How. Business was begun in the building still occupied, the Messenger Block having been erected by the bank people at that time. In S. D. How was vested the management of the bank and that gentleman conducted it for more than fourteen years.
The Lyon County Bank was reorganized as the Lyon County National Bank, capital stock, $50,000, on August 1, 1891. The officers and directors chosen at that time were as follows: H. B. Strait, president; M. Sullivan, vice president; S. D. How, cashier; F. AY. Sickler, assistant cashier; H. B. Strait, M. Sullivan. S. D. How. C. B. Tyler, A. C. Chittenden, James Lawrence and .1. (!. Schutz, directors. In addition to these D. D. Forbes and Joseph Ciesielski were stockholders.
There have been only a few changes in the management of the Lyon County National Bank. Cashier S. I). How resigned October 3, 1892, and was suc- ceeded by F. W. Sickler, who lias served ever since, with the exception of a short time when J. G. Schutz was cashier. President Strait died February 25, 1894, and was succeeded by C. B. Tyler, the present incumbent. James Lawrence is the present vice president. During its long life the Lyon County National Bank has been in able hands and is one of the sound financial institutions of the county.
The First National Bank of Marshall was authorized to begin business August 16, 1891, and on September 8 opened its doors in the building it still occupies and owns. Its capital stock was $50,000 and the owners of the stock were H. M. Langland, G: W. Pitts, M. W. Harden, R. M. Addison', C. F. Johnson, Olof Pehrson, F. E. Parsons and Andrew Nelson. The first officers and directors were as follows: H. M. Langland, president; R. M. Addison, vice president; M. W. Harden, cashier; C. C. Guernsey, assistant cashier; R. M. Addi- son, Olof Pehrson, F. E. Parsons, C. F. Johnson and H. M. Langland, directors.
During the first twenty years of the institution's history the only, change in management occurred in June, 1901, when E. S. Frick succeeded C. C. Guernsey as assistant cashier. The only other changes since organization occurred in Januarv, 1911. At that time R. M. Addison succeeded H. M. Langland as president, M. W. Harden became vice president, E. S. Frick became cashier, and H. N. Harmon was made assistant cashier. The present directors are R. M. Addison, H. M. Langland, Andrew Nelson, M. W. Harden and E. S. Frick.
The First National has had a remarkable growth and has larger deposits than any other bank in Lyon county. According to a recent statement, the deposits are about one-half million dollars. Since the organization the stockholders have received in dividends $95,000. The bank has a surplus and undivided profit of over $28,000.
The Marshall State Bank is the youngest of the city's financial institutions. It was opened for business June 15, 1909, with a capital stock of $25,000. Its officers, chosen at that time and still at the head of the bank, are as follows: Spurgeon Odell, president; James A. McNiven, vice president; S. J. Forbes, cashier. Those gentlemen are also the directors and owners of the stock. The bank owns the building it occupies and the one adjoining.
The Marshall State Bank does a general banking business, makes farm loans, deals in real estate, attends to collections, and writes insurance. During its life of three years the bank has built up an excellent business and has gained the confidence of the people to an extent seldom equalled by an institution of the same age.
The officers of the State Bank were formerly associated in the real estate, loan and collection business under the firm name of Odell & McNiven. They succeeded D. D. Forbes & Company, one of the pioneer real estate firms of the city
The municipal power and light plant was built in 1894, furnishing water and electric lights. The plant was enlarged in 1905 and new and better machinery added. Another addition was made two years later and in 1908 all-day electric light service was inaugurated. This service is now used extensively for power by printing. offices, butcher shops, laundry, creamery, machine shops, gar- ages, elevators, etc.
The plant is strictly modern and one of the best in Southwestern Minnesota. It is equipped with high-pressure boil- ers, cross compound direct-connected engines, and 2300 volts, sixty cycle, three-phase alternating current system. The city water is supplied by artesian wells. Pressure is maintained on the water system by direct driven steam pumps. Recently a central heating system has been installed and most of the business houses on the southwest side of Main Street are heated from the municipal plant. The heat is supplied by the exhaust steam from the pumps and a portion of the engine exhaust.
One of the institutions in which the people of Marshall take great pride is the flouring mill operated by the Marshall Milling Company. It is one of the really big concerns of Southwestern Minnesota, maintaining an enormous plant, and it has placed Marshall on the map for many people who otherwise would not have heard of the city.
The Sleepy Eye Milling Company in 1892 bought a small flouring mill in Marshall, and in 1893 the Marshall Milling Company was organized and incorporated. Its first officers were William Gieseke, president; William F. Gieseke, secretary; and A. Blanchard, treasurer. For more than a decade the business was conducted on a comparatively small scale, but the business grew and in 1905 there was completed at a cost of $100.000 a modern mill. Other improvements have since been made, and the Marshall Milling Company today has one of the finest plants in the Northwest.
The mill proper is a six-story brick building and is operated twenty-four hours a day. There are large elevators, warehouses and other buildings that go to make up a model plant.
The Northwestern Telephone Ex- change Company is one of the business institutions of Marshall. It is the successor of the Southwestern Minnesota Telephone Company, which installed the first telephone exchange in Marshall. The last named company, established by Pipestone capitalists, entered Lyon county in 1897 and built exchanges at Marshall, Tracy and Minneota. T. F. Robinson was president and manager of the company and C. E. Patterson was in charge of the Marshall exchange.
The present company purchased the properties in Lyon county August 1. 1906, rebuilt the lines, in 1910, and moved the exchange to the News- Messenger Building. M. B. Hanson is the local manager. Several rural lines are given connections with the Marshall line. The first rural telephone line was built by the old company in 1901.
One of the big business institutions of the city is the Marshall Tile and Sidewalk Company, which was incorporated in January. 1907. The plant is one of the best equipped in the state and covers about six acres of land. The best tile manufacturing machinery on the market has been installed. The curing bin is made of cement blocks and all the tile are steam-cured. The company manufactures cement drain tile and building blocks and builds sidewalks and does other contract work. The product is used extensively throughout Lyon county and the trade territory extends to all points on the Northwestern. Great Northern and Milwaukee railroads within a radius of one hundred miles.
The officers and stockholders of the company are as follows: W. W. Simmons, president; Samuel Molter, vice president; Spurgeon Odell, secretary; W. F. Gillette, treasurer; James A. McNiven, J. G. Schutz, Anton M. Ilvdeen, M. M. English and Herman Schurz.
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