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THE OMAHA SUNDAY BEE: OCTOBER 14, 100G.
Ideal Home Life and Public Activity of George Lawson Sheldon I i s, . . J "3 .Mm.-- I! v ' J tc --.,.v.fV. i rim-iT A - .jvrx-wVy x ,y "vrA . -'' ' " if-' .'. -.'1 - -r '- i i :ySJsl ldm - . l ... 4 ..... rm.- - . , . . ' ' - A ...-.-: - - f y : " '....v. . ' .. -a, . ' rr ivf'-.- .V '.r-f ?-' VS ;,'.',) . . ' ; v - :i. , -v,.'; ". ' It it J il t . -Vr - " .r - v ' '.'? t"?4 'U' - . - ;.. . ' . , v--v &f- ..... .. . ' : V' ' . ii iBinnwi mm ffimwiii uimm rnrr-r"W'w,ww,'nw Upper Corner Lower Coiner Julia. Julia. Anion. Marr. George Lawaon Sheldon. Aruon at Play. Isadora Feedtnf Squirrel, Ulsa Todd. Mary. Mre. Sheldoa Oeorg I Jr., Fishing In tha Weeping Water. REPUBLICAN NOMINEE FOR GOVERNOR OF NEBRASKA AND HIS INTERESTING FAMILY SOME INTIMATE GLIMPSES OF THEIR QUIET HOME LIFE. A m tmrnt N OLD FASHIONED houaa almost hidden from view In the center of a yard eight acres In area, oov ered with shade trees, elms, oaks, pines, cedars, walnuts and ash. hera and thera a rustic bench, a swing or two, green grass everywhere, with the rippling little Weeping Water skirting the edges of the yard to the west, a portion of the old dam of years ago still obstruct Ing the natural flow of the water, and then as far as the eye can sea to the west, the north, the south, broad acre handsome country buildings, herds of cattle, immense orchards! to the east tha town of Ne hawka. iuch Is the home of George Lawson Shel don, the republican nominee for governor of Nebraska. In such a plaoe ha . was born; In such a place he has grown to manhood close to nature, close to the peo ple who represent the best of Nebraska's cltteenshlp, In a place that breathes In tegrity, honesty, love and hospitality. He became a part of all this. He lives all this In his dally life. He lives aa the people around him live. He works as the people around him work. He goes to the field as his hired man goes to the field. It Is from such surroundings as these and from such a Ufa as this, his own people, representatives of the best cltlsenshlp of Nebraska, have called him forth to carry their standard to victory and "to place above tha state house door the word 'In tegrity. " Bom of the Mother. Across the little village of Nebawka, In plain sight of the home of George Sheldon, lives Mrs. Sheldon, the mother of the republican candidate. A pioneer settler of Csss county and Nebraska, a grand woman, tha widow of a grand man. beautifully rounding out a life of usefulness, just such a mother one would expect George Sheldon to possess. Bha Is delightful to meet, pleasant and entertaining. "Do you really think George will be elected?" she inquired. "Well, maybe he will. I have been reading the democratic papers and they don't seem to think ha will be. If it Is for the best I hope he will be chosen." And then, her face still radiant with thoughts of her son, she talked of the old days. "It was In 157 we built the house where my son now lives," she said. "The timber from which the lumber was sawed had to be hauled for many miles. Mr. Sheldon had a sawmill and ha sawed the lumber him self. Some people astc me If those old days war not day of trials and hardships; An, but we had such good times. There were only a few of us hero then, but we were young and it seems to ma now as I look back over the long years that the young people today don't have the good- times we Joying good health and takes an active in tereat In the affairs of her home and of the state, and only last summer made a visit back to Massachusetts to sea her slater. Story of His Boyhood. It Is of such timber as this George Shel don is made. It was the dally companion ship of such a woman as this that made him tender, and broad and sympathetic "George Is Just like he used to be," said A. F. Strum, a lumber and hardware dealer of Nehawka. "He is generous and unselflsb. and always thinking of others. One time when we were going to school here to gether, his father had given him a knife. Borne of tha other boys were denied those little luxuries becauaa of tha financial con dition of their parents. Of course many of the boys wanted that knife. One of the boys wanted to trade for it And George re fused to trade, but said: " 'Here, you can use it whenever you want to, so what's the use of trading for it?' "The boy borrowed the knife, and when he brought it back George said, 'Go ahead and keep It. If I can't get another one I can do without.' "I am Just telling yon this story to show you that even as a child George Sheldon was generous and unselfish. A knife to a boy those days was a great possession, and mighty iew boys would have given one away. When financial asslstanoe is wanted for any charitable purpose in Nehawka, George Sheldon always responds. He is liberal and does his kind acts without any band to announce the fact." 4 Home Lit Is Happy. George Sheldon's borne is a happy one and the beauty of tha exterior is no more pleasing than Is tha beauty of the char acter of those who constitute it. The family consists of Mr. and Mrs. Sheldon, Master George Lawson Sheldon, jr., age 9 years; Miss Mary Sheldon, age 7 years; Miss Julia Pollard Sheldon, age I years, and Master Anson Hoistngton Sheldon, age IS months. Mrs. 8heldon was for merly Miss Rose Hlggins and she, like her husband, comes of a family noted for Us hospitality. In her home she 1 queen, and to those who come there she Is the Ideal hostess. Her beautiful chil dren to her are not cares, but Joy; she Is companion and mother in one; they love and respect, but do not fear her; she rules with kind words and love. George Lawson Sheldon 3d is the Image of his father, as is little Miss Julia and Anson, while Mary looks more like her mother. All have the dark eyes of tha father and mother. No maid baa taught these children. No small room has been set apart as a nursery for them. The entire house, from cellar to garret the entire yard is their play bouse and play ground. Even the sacred precincts of their father's study is as free to them as the air they breathe. Incidentally the father happens to know that, and ho knows these children are Just like other children brought up in such pleasant surroundings and he haa prepared him self. One side of the little room sot aside as his study and library, is covered with book caees reaching almost to tha oell ing. It is on top of these book cases he has planted his precious papers, news paper clippings and other reading matter he wants to look over at his leisure. He may have dumped the things up there until this strenuous campaign lets up, so he can put them away, and he may have dumped them up there out of the way of those precious children but those chil dren have the run of the library bad." ABOugn 19 years oia, sirs, uueiaon is ea- lllliu i .ill WHITE!! II I II mini JH&b--7ky ' s"jry.i' --v " .., -,,t : ':r -T: " "! - "JP- Children at Ila. A staff photographer and a reporter for The Bee recently visited the Sheldon home. They found young Anson Sheldon busy with a coal chisel digging up the back yard and depcslting the dirt in his little apron In very approved fashion. George Lawson Sheldon, jr., called "Lawson," to distinguish him from the father he so much resembles, was busy with his Ash ing line In the Weeping Water, while Mary and Julia were helping their mother "straighten" up the house In preparation for the coming of the husband and father on tha day following. Across the yard Miss Isadora Sheldon, a niece of the republican candidate, the only 'vChlld of Frank Sheldon, was feeding a squirrel from her hand. Running around among the trees were a half dozen or more squirrels as gentle as pets, for the children have been. taught to love the little things and every day it Is the pleasant duty of Miss Isadore to feed a cup of nuts to them. On a settee In the yard three or four of the town people wero taking advantage of the shade trees for a little recreation, for the Sheldon yard is free to the people of Nehawka the gate has long since been taken from the hinges and If It ever had a lock that lock has floated away in the Weeping Water long years ago. Part of Hebstrks History. The house in which George Sheldon lives, as told by his mother, was built in 1857 by George Lawson Sheldon, sr., who played such a conspicuous part in the mak ing of Nebrsska. It is located on the original 8hcIdon homestead and Is long and built one and a half stories high. It was intended to erect a two-story house, so Mrs. Sheldon said, but In those days there were no trees In that part of Ne braska, and for fear a two-story house would be more of an object for a storm than a lower house, the plans were changed. The doors are of walnut, as Is the other wood work on the inside. The furniture Is old fashioned, and has done service for two generations, every piece hallowed by tender associations. Tha rooms are not large, but are conveniently located. There Is no porch, the exterior being plain. Across the road to the south is the old barn, now almost out of com mission, built at the same time. A short distance west of the house are still por tions of the old dam and the mill race, marking the location of the first saw mill ever erected in Nebraska. It was hero, too, the elder Sheldon ground corn for the pioneer settlers and for the Indians. Only a few of the old rocks are left, while a little farther to tha south, past the old barn, is the remnant of the old brick yard. In the. rear of the Sheldon house to the north Is a little cabin in a clump of trees occupied by colored people. Everything around the old house speaks of the past and it is tha Intention of George Sheldon to keep It that way. When the bouse waa built there was not a tree in the yard. Kvery one there now wna set out by the elder Sheldon and his faithful helpers. Five Sheldon Children. Of the original Sheldon family there were five children, and all, with the ex ception of Mrs. Todd, are living. The de parted daughter left as a companion to her mother a daughter. Miss Florence Todd, just budding into beautiful woman hood, upon whom has been showered the love and affection of all the Sheldon family. While her home is with her grandmother, she spends much of her time at the home of George Sheldon, and Is a great favorite with the Sheldon children, who spend much of their time with her. Frank Sheldon haa built an elegant new house on the north east corner of the original homestead, and no fence separates his home from that of George Sheldon, while Vilas Sheldon, the other son. with his mother. Mrs. Wolfe, the only living daughter,, resides within sight of the homes of her broth ers and mother. It is a congenial family, that, founded by the elder' Sheldon and those who constitute It, still believe that in union there Is strength. George Sheldon as a Farmer. The management of the immense farm which these boys helped their father to get haa been turned over to Vilas Sheldon, the youngest son. Up to within the last year, however, George Sheldon haa been raising cattle snd farming on an extensive scale, about two miles west of his home in town. Out there he was one of the men. As everyone knows who knows George Sheldon he is very dellberato in his actions. He starts off slowly, but he keeps at it. He had employed a man to stack hay and he himself was one of tha pitchers. "George is so slow, I will have a plcnlo," remarked the stacker to his fellow work ers before going to the field. That night he had a different remark to make. "I guess Sheldon can pitch to someone else tomorrow," he said. "The fellow pitches up a whole shock at once and ha never aults." And that's the way George Sheldon does everything he keeps at It It was whllo he was at work out on this farm that someone came and told him he had been nominated for the state senate. "What's the matter," he said, "couldn't you get someone elseT" "Of course we could," said the courier, "but the convention wanted you. Tou have been living here all your life. You have been one of the people and you know what the people need." netting: Along, In Politics. So Sheldon had to drop his plow, stop working for himself and start out to do service for a people who needed him. Two years later he made a trip down Into Mississippi, where he. had boujrht some land. When ho came back he found he had again been nominated for the senate. Again he tried to get out of it, but he couldn't. His people knew he was a de liberate man and he never did anything until he was sure he knew what should be done. Again he had to quit working for himself to help his people. When he left the senate after the last session, he re marked he had to go home and work a lit tle for himself. He agRln went to Missis sippi to look after his Investment there Telegrams began to come to him. He was urged to announce his candidacy for gov ernor. He refused. He was urged again and again. He still refused. The news papers took up his name and spread it everywhere. The people got to know him as those people who live neighbor to htm know him. When he did finally come home and tell the peorle he would make the race, the preliminary work was ill done. It was just a question of how much his majority would be in the convention. But Sheldon didn't care for that. He hod consented to make the race. He felt It due his neighbors that he make a fight. The first thing he did was to move out of the comfortable front room of his old fashioned home into a little side room out of the way of everybody and he got to work. He wrote letters and he wrote speeches. He dug down deep Into the needs of the state and what relief a governor could give a people. He started out slow and deliberately, just like he did when he was pitching hsy to that farm hand. But he kept at it. He finished in a whirlwind as strong and stronger than when he be gan. Gives I'p His Business. But when he started out running for governor George Sheldon gar up the man agement of his farm. This was turned over to Vilas Sheldon. George Sheldon found he oould not be governor and devote him self to his private business at the same time. Tha republican party wanted him for governor, and again George Sheldon had to sacrifice his own business. At this time he has practically freed himself from the cares of the farm, though a neighbor remarked: "He still haa 300 or 400 head of cuttle on his hands." In passing' It might be remarked that some years ago the elder Sheldon retired from active management of the homestead and It fell to the lot or George Sheldon to take care of the cattle and attend to that branch of the farm. During these years he became an expert with the rope and could throw a steer with the best of them. But this fact would nver have been known outside of those who wotked with htm had it not been for the chance remark of that 0-year-old .son, who thinks that accomplishment of his, father Is his great est. But Mr. Sheldon had given, no ex hibition with the ro?e and neither does he wear the regulation cowboy outfit. Student of Dry Works. George Sheldon ha always been a student and his library, or den or what one might call It, is his favorite loafing place when at home, and sluce being relieved of active supervision of the farm he has spent much time there. It is full of the driest reading matter imaginable, a Congressional Record open on his desk being one of the nr things to attract attention of those who enter. Railroad rate sheets, works on rall rcHds and railroad reports take up much room on his book shelves, and it is from these he has secured Information which Is doing so much to dethrone the railroad kings of Nebraska politics. In such a homo, with such a family around him, he has had an unusual opportunity to Btudy and to fit himself to be the chief executive of this state. It has been told frequently thst the Sheldon home ha been the depot at which people waited for the usually belated Mis souri Pacific train which is scheduled to come through Nehawka. On cold nights it is said the front room of this hospitable home was used by cltisen and stranger alike. This may be true and It may not be true, but for the last year and a half tha story will not apply, for the reason that George Sheldon went down to the senate with a request from Nehawka that the railroad be required to keep the depot open at night. The depot is kept open, though every effort was made to prevent George Sheldon from getting what he was after. d Home Man. George Sheldon is a "home man." At his home ha appears tha best. He would pre fer to be at horn than to hold pablia office. People who know him know this is true and when they visit hi home they can easily see why this would be true and why he would prefer to be at home. H Is loved by his family and by his neigh ' bora He loves his family and Is loved bj each member of it. Mrs. Hlggins, a most delightful woman, already past three-score years, his mother-in-law, said: ' "I have read some things In the demo cratic papers about George, but he is loved at home. Even his mother-in-law haa naught but good to say of him. When a woman loves her son-in-law, according to the funny papers, he surely 1 about per fect." And then this delightful woman, who is an important part of George Shel don's home, talked at length in her digni fied way of her temporary home with this splendid family, of the sweetness of his children, of the splendid character of his beloved mother. Native of Nebraska. Senator Sheldon is a native born Ne braakan, and on May 31 was 36 years old. He was brought up on Nebraska soli and Nebraska was breathed into him every day. He attended the Nehawka school, graduated at the State university with the degree of bachelor of literature in It, and followed this up with a post graduate course at Harvard. At the uni versity he was a leader in debates and in university politics, not because he is now running for governor (and such things are usually credited to gubernatorial can didates), but because his old clasnmata tell about It and say It is true. He was captain of the university cadets and his company won the competitive drill in Omaha, -for which he received a loving cup from the people of the big city. He was captain of Company B of the Third Nebraska volunteers during the Spanish American wur and was mustered out of service with his regiment In 1H99. He was married in Roseville, 111., in 18J6. In appearance Hcnator Sheldon reminds one of the great big trees in his yard, among which he loves to roam. Hs la built of Iron, over six feet in height and broad shouldered in proportion, He 1 serious at all times, except when those children get hold of him, and, of course, that is different. He says he can't tell a funny story In his speeches, and ho imagines for that reason his speeches have little effect, or he did have such an imagi nation until one evening recently In Lin coln he suggested such a thing. A by stander remarked: "I hear the people and the newspapers commenting on that speech you made In which you showed the difference in freight rates charged the shippers of Nebraska and Iowa. I haven't heard of anyone telling about any funny stories any speaker la tolling in Nebraska." "V" M""V T' 7 ' ., .., "" 1 1 " " '' i ii i umii-i i I, , I viu'.- - - - ,r' - ' " . -- - -t-r.-'r - v-i---. ;.. 'AUi., - m- w " . ',-,1 .-FT' - Wt .- - -r 'r:7r--: r m ft sy : ' 3 & B U r ' I 4f - J" -t-, S4tiil III! II i c sr-lJS-SaVC ?7- i f vC ' U r7 I t f J:JI 1V m :ii!ll!M.. if ' -V--- ... . .1"' GBOROa L. SHELDON'S HOME. BUILT BT Hit FATHER HALT A CENTURY AOO aR. SHELDON'S MOTHER AND HIS OLDEST BOH BOMB OF THE ELD Eft UBM. BUQLDOI f 4 1