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Majors. After that regiment was discharged he again enlisted, this time as a private in company K, Forty-eighth Missouri Volunteer Infantry, with Geo. Vandaventer as captain, being mustered in the 1st day of September, 1864, and being mustered out the 29th day of June, 1865. His four sons all fought under the stars and stripes for the preservation of the Union, and his wife and daughters—those remaining unmarried—were at the front, and often acted as nurses, during a portion of the time that he was in active service. After the spirit of state rights had been crushed he returned again to Nebraska, living in Nemaha and Richardson counties alternately until the date of his death, June 2, 1871. He was survived by his wife and six children. He was buried in Walnut Grove cemetery in Brownville.
BIOGRAPHY OF ANDREW JACKSON POPPLETON, MEMBER OF THE
FIRST TERRITORIAL LEGISLATURE.
Written by Hon. James M. Woolworth and William S. Poppleton.
The subject of this brief sketch comes of a family which may be traced to an early day. An English officer of the name was in Cromwell's army which overran Ireland in 1649-50. When the subjugation of the island was complete he remained there. It is said that Samuel Poppleton was his grandson. Samuel Poppleton was born in Ireland in 1710 and was married to Rosanna Whaley, by whom he had four sons, Ebenezer, Benjamin, William, and Samuel, the youngest of whom, Samuel, was born in New Jersey on Christmas day, 1750. Soon after the birth of this child the family settled at Pownall, in the territory which now forms a part of the state of Vermont. At the outbreak of the revolution the elder Samuel adhered to the British crown and returned to Ireland, where he died, but his four sons enlisted in the Continental army and were all actively engaged in the war.
Samuel, the youngest, was with Ethan Allen at the taking of Ticonderoga, served under Benedict Arnold in the expedition against Quebec and at the battle of Saratoga, and participated in a number of engagements until the close of the
war. He was accustomed to say that he had been in seven pitched battles.
In 1783 Samuel Poppleton was married in Pownall, Vt., to Caroline Osborne, by whom he had eight children, of whom William Poppleton, the father of Andrew J. Poppleton, was born in Poultney, Vt., in 1795.
In 1811 Samuel Poppleton with his family removed to Richmond, Ontario county, New York, and in 1822 again emigrated and settled at Belleville, in Richland county, Ohio, where he died in 1833. His wife, died at the same place on the 7th of November, 1842. In 1814 William Poppleton was married at Richmond, in New York, to Zada Crooks, the granddaughter of David Crooks, a Scotchman, who came to Blandford, in Massachusetts, prior to 1769, and afterwards removed to Richmond, in New York, where he died in 1820. His son, David, the father of Zada Crooks Poppleton, was born in Blandford, Mass., on the 2d day of December, 1769, and afterwards removed to Richmond, in New York, where he was engaged as a saw and grist miller until his death in 1812. The mother of Mrs. Poppleton was Eunice Knox Crooks, a granddaughter of William Knox, who was born in Ireland of Scotch descent in 1690, and came to America in 1735. She was born on the 30th of May, 1772, and died in Troy, Oakland county, Michigan, in 1863, at the great age of ninety-one. In 1825 William Poppleton and his family removed to Troy township, in Oakland county, Michigan. He had seven children, of whom Andrew J. Poppleton was the sixth, born in Troy township, Oakland county, Michigan, on the 24th day of July, 1830. It is worthy of note that each generation of Mr. Poppleton's family, including himself, have been pioneers in a new country.
From Samuel Poppleton and his four sons, who came to this country from Ireland and made new homes in what is now Vermont, to the subject of this sketch, all were farmers, tilling the soil with their own hands. The education of the father of Andrew J. Poppleton was limited. By his own reading, study, and thought he became a man of large intelligence, and as such, and for sterling virtues, was held in the highest esteem in the county
of Oakland. He was several times elected to local offices and once to the Michigan state legislature.
The life of a new comer to a western home in the early days of the settlement of Michigan was very severe. Clearing the forests, planting a farm, and building a home was a work of great privation and unremitting toil. William Poppleton passed through these days and their labors, and in his later manhood saw the state of his adoption a prosperous commonwealth and accumulated an ample competency, living and dying on the farm which his own hands had redeemed from a state of nature.
He greatly valued the education which had been denied him, and gave to his children all the advantages in that way which the circumstances permitted. He died in May, 1869.
The boyhood of Andrew J. Poppleton was passed upon his father's farm. He inherited a love of the pursuits and associations of rural life. The hay and harvest field, the ride to the mill, the orchard, the care and love of animals, the common sports of such a home came to him as natural and enjoyable exercises, and from their pleasures he was never alienated. One of his favorite recreations in later life was the development of agriculture and the breeding, raising, and training of standard bred trotting horses at his Oakland farm of some 1,200 acres, near Elkhorn, Neb. He contributed a strong impulse toward the advancement of the trotting stock interests of the state.
Until 1844 he went to the county district schools, and at that time entered an academy at Romeo, a little town near his home, where he prepared for college. In 1847 he entered Michigan University; but in the fall of 1850 he withdrew and entered Union College at Schenectady. While he was at the latter institution the venerable Dr. Nott was its president, and Dr. Tayler Lewis its professor of Greek. Other members of the faculty left an influence upon his mind, but these two men deeply impressed themselves upon his character. As an instructor of young men, instilling into them the highest principles and at the same time teaching them the precepts which conduct to practical success in life, Dr. Nott has been unsurpassed in this country. The
nature of the country boy was open to such influences, and he has carried through life what he received from the lips and from the personality of that great man.
Dr. Lewis influenced the young student in another direction. A Grecian of learning and culture unsurpassed, perhaps, by any other in this country, he not only taught his pupils the language, but inspired in them a love of the literature of the Attic race. Mr. Poppleton graduated in July, 1851. He returned to the school at Romeo, where he taught Latin and Greek until April of the next year. During the last years of his college life, and while engaged in teaching, it was his ambition to be a professor of Greek in a college, which seemed to him the very highest position to which he could attain. Upon leaving Romeo he entered the law office of Messrs. C. I. and E. C. Walker, at Detroit, Mich., then leaders of the bar of the state. He continued his studies with them until October 22, 1852, when, after a public examination by the judges of the supreme court of Michigan, he was admitted to the bar. Directly afterwards he became a student in the law school of John W. Fowler, at that time located at Balston, in New York, and afterwards removed to Poughkeepsie in that state. He enjoyed at this school the special advantages of the instruction which Mr. Fowler gave in elocution and in the related exercises. With very great gifts in public speech, and trained in all of the ways of a popular orator, this gentleman was one of the most useful and successful teachers. He not only gave instruction in the exercises of declamation, but taught his pupils to think upon their feet; to prepare themselves by abundant study, and then express themselves at a moment's notice in the presence of others and under the direction of his critical skill. Timid, hésitating, ineffective, and disconnected speech was, under his training, developed into direct, strong, vigorous, and impressive delivery, not after the pattern of his own style, but according to the natural modes of the pupil, when trained and cultivated. He never had a more apt and enthusiastic scholar than Mr. Poppleton.
In April, 1853, the young man returned to Detroit, and became
a partner in a law firm which was mostly engaged in a collection business, and remained there until the first of October, 1854. At this time California held out many promises to young men, and Mr. Poppleton listened to them. He turned his face to the west, and on his way reached Omaha October 13, 1854, just about the time government was being set up in Nebraska. Omaha was just being settled; its resident population was very small; most of those who claimed citizenship really lived at Council Bluffs and in other towns in Iowa along the Missouri river. There was something interesting to the young man in the work of planting homes and in the institution of social and political order in a new country which disposed him to remain for the winter, thinking at first that when he had seen the work completed he would continue his way to the Pacific or turn his steps in some other direction. One thing and another afterward fell out, which determined him to remain and make his home for life in the new territory. In 1855 he married Caroline L. Sears, by whom he had three children.
The different acts of the executive in organizing the government followed one another in rapid succession. On the 21st day of October, 1854, preliminary to the election of a delegate to congress and a territorial legislature, the acting governor, T. B. Cuming, issued his proclamation for an enumeration of the inhabitants. On the 26th of the same month he issued instructions to deputy marshals directing them in their duties of taking the census. On the 21st of November he sent out a set of rules for conducting the election, and on the 23d issued a further proclamation dividing the territory into counties, apportioning the councilmen and representatives among them, and ordering the election. On the 20th of December he constituted the three judicial districts, assigned the judges of the supreme court thereto, and appointed terms for the courts; and on the same day issued another proclamation convening the legislature at Omaha on the 16th of January, 1855.
Mr. Poppleton had known and been a friend of the governor in Michigan, and naturally was called to take part in advising