Russell L. Roberts, who passed away in 1911, was an honored veteran of the Civil war and an active factor in
the agricultural development of Saunders county through a period of forty four years. His widow still resides on
the home farm on section 30, Wahoo township. His birth occurred in Conneaut, Ashtabula county, Ohio, on the 21st
of August, 1842, his parents being Chauncey and Elvira Roberts. He received his education in the common schools
of his native town and on the 28th of August, 1861, when a young man of nineteen years, enlisted for three years'
service in the Union army as a member of the Second Ohio Battery, Light Artillery. He was mustered out at New Orleans,
September 10, 1864, and then reenlisted for another year, serving with the rank of corporal. Mr. Roberts made an
excellent record as a brave and fearless soldier, never faltering in the performance of any task assigned him.
Returning to Ohio, he remained in that state until the spring of 1867, when he camel to Nebraska and took up a
homestead claim southeast of Ithaca. Two years later he disposed of the property and preempted the tract of land
on which his widow now resides in Wahoo township, there successfully carrying on agricultural pursuits during the
remainder of his life. The soil is rich and productive and he annually gathered bounteous harvests which found
a ready sale on the market.
On the 21st of May, 1872, Mr. Roberts was united in marriage to Miss Martha Dech, her parents being Elijah and
Hannah Dech, who were pioneer settlers of this county and took up a homestead claim here. To Mr. and Mrs. Roberts
were born eight children, as follows: Loretta, who is deceased; Blanch; the wife of Dr. Roberts, of Owatonna, Minnesota,
by whom she has three sons, Howard, Oliver and Robert; Mabel, the wife of W. H. Dunlap, who lives on a ranch in
Oregon and by whom she has two daughters, Harriet and Wilma; Chauncey, who has passed away; Gertie, also deceased;
Grace, who is a resident of Lincoln; and Archie and Russell, who live with their widowed mother and operate the
Politically Mr. Roberts was a stanch republican, ever supporting the party which was the defense of the Union during
the dark days of the Civil war. He was a devoted and consistent member of the Christian church, while his widow
and children attend the Methodist church. When he passed away in 1911, at the age of sixty nine years, the community
lost a worthy and valued citizen, his friends a prized companion and his family a devoted and loving husband and
father. Mrs. Roberts is also widely known and is held in high esteem for her many excellent and lovable traits
Past and Present Saunders County, Nebraska
A Record of Settlement, Organization,
Progress and Achievement
Charles Perky Supervising Editor
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Saunders County, NE
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