Biography of Austin C. Mutz

A Biographical and genealogical history of southeastern Nebraska

Austin C. Mutz, a prominent nurseryman in Auburn, Nebraska, was born on February 18, 1850, in Edinburg, Indiana. His grandparents emigrated from Germany, initially settling in Pennsylvania before moving to Ohio. John Mutz, Austin’s father, married Phoebe Williams in 1847 and relocated to Nebraska in 1857. Austin received his education in Cass County, Nebraska, and pursued farming and the nursery business, establishing a successful nursery in Auburn. He married Mary Seybolt in 1884, and although they lost their only biological child, they adopted a son, Otto. Austin was active in educational matters and politics, identifying as a Bryan Democrat.

The Bittinger Family of Merrick County, Nebraska

Margaret Hayes — Vinson Bittinger April 1942

The Bittinger family traces its origins to John Bittinger, born on November 3, 1817, in Chambersburg, Franklin County, Pennsylvania. John and his wife Rebecca Kail had six sons. Their second son, Charles Henry, and his wife Anna Hittle Bittinger, moved to Nebraska in 1877 and homesteaded near Clarks. They had three children: Walter, Otis, and Mabel. Otis Allen, born in 1878, married Fannie Bird in 1908 and managed the Clarks Telephone Exchange. Their son, Vinson, served in the U.S. Air Force and later managed the family business. Vinson and his wife Margaret Hayes had five children and maintained their home in Clarks, Nebraska.

Bice — Tilley Family of Merrick County, Nebraska

A History of Merrick County, Nebraska to 1895

Ethel Bice, born near Chapman in 1901, was the daughter of William H. and Etta Campbell Bice. She married Ralph W. Tilley in 1929. Ralph, born near Grand Island in 1902, was the son of Will F. and Floy S. Wilcox Tilley. The couple had two sons: Donald, born in Alda, Nebraska, and Loran, born in Central City. Ethel and Ralph, both graduates of Grand Island Baptist College, were active in education and community work. They taught high school in Nebraska, and Ralph held superintendent positions. Later, they raised turkeys commercially and moved to Grand Island in 1950.

Roger C. Beck Family of Merrick County, Nebraska

A History of Merrick County, Nebraska to 1895

Roger Beck and Mildred John Beck, born in Merrick and Valley Counties respectively, married on March 12, 1949, in Lexington, Nebraska. They initially farmed near Clarks, Nebraska, before purchasing acreage in Clarks in 1954 and later moving to Holt County in 1962. They were active in 4-H, church, and community events. They settled east of Central City in 1964, continuing their farming and horse interests. They raised three children—John, Jerry, and Charlene—and have three grandchildren. The Becks enjoyed family gatherings, community involvement, and travel, marking their life with memorable holidays and activities.

William Alexander Family of Merrick County, Nebraska

A History of Merrick County, Nebraska to 1895

William Bruce Alexander married Daisy Florence Rose in 1905 in Tazwell County. They had a son who died in infancy. Daisy died in 1908, and William moved to Omaha, remarried in 1910 to Emma Vonder Lieth, and had five more children. Their family moved several times, predominantly lived in Nebraska, and William worked in various jobs before resuming farming. He died in 1918. Emma managed after his death, moving with children and ultimately died in 1936. Their children had varied careers and lives, continuing the family lineage in Nebraska. This history traces the Alexander family’s multigenerational saga starting from the early 20th century, depicting transitions in residence, occupations, and significant life events.

Stewart L. Abel of Merrick County, Nebraska

A History of Merrick County, Nebraska to 1895

Stewart L. Abel recounts his life’s journey, beginning with his birth in Central City, Nebraska, in 1924. He attended District #50 and later married the daughter of a woman who once cared for his father. He transitioned from farming to a fulfilling career in life insurance in Columbus, Nebraska. Abel reflects on the economic shifts over the decades, the deep roots his family has in Merrick County, and his aspirations for future generations preserving the land. His narrative is enriched by vivid memories of his schooling days, community challenges, and significant familial connections that shaped him and his community’s history, tying his life story closely to the broader economic and historical changes observed in his lifetime.

Biography of Hon. Thomas R. Burling of Buda, Nebraska

Portrait and biographical album of Lancaster county, Nebraska title page

Hon. Thomas R. Burling is one of the leading citizens of Nebraska, of which he was an early pioneer, and with whose interests he has long been identified as an agriculturist, as a statesman, and as a merchant, and in all that relates to her commercial, social and political life, he is pre-eminent. He is … Read more