Conrad Parsons, 81, well-known stockman and pioneer resident of Sioux County and the early tent town of Silver Cliff near what is now Lusk, died at the Crawford Memorial Hospital Saturday morning as the result of burns received about 3:30 last Wednesday morning at his house a half mile south of Harrison.
He had been restless in sleep and got up to seek warmth in front of the gas-burning fireplace, backed up to the fireplace, his robe caught fire. He called to his wife and she rolled a rug about him to extinguish the blaze but his back and one side were badly burned. Bill Powell was called to the home, and he called the ambulance with Dick Carnahan and Pard Partridge responding. They rushed Mr. Parsons to Crawford while Mr. Powell took Mrs. Parsons in the car.
Mr. Parsons had been in poor health and death came about 9:00 Saturday morning.
Funeral services were held at the Harrison Methodist Memorial Church Tuesday afternoon with the Rev. Victor Ireland of Harrison and the Rev. Bob Thompson of the church 20 miles south east of Crawford officiating. The latter had officiated at the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Parsons in 1959. Burial was in the Harrison Cemetery. Houston Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.
Active pallbearers were Bill Coffee, Bill Powell, Martin Marshall, Bob Marshall, Elmer Pullen and Harold Reeves. Honorary pallbearers were Frank Lewis, Cleve Zimmerman, George Wickersham, Ed Herren, Tony Larson, W. E. Mumby, Vern Marsteller, Tress Powell, Frank Harris, J.A. McClary, and Bill Hovey. J. H. Christian who died suddenly Tuesday morning was also to have been an honorary pallbearer.
Born at Clearwater
Mr. Parsons was born October 6, 1880, at Clearwater, Nebr., the son of Joseph and Martha Ann Parsons and the oldest of nine children. The family moved to Sioux County about 1885 living for a while on Sowbelly Creek in a dugout home, as Mr. Parsons told in an article in the Sun's 75th Anniversary edition of last July. The father followed construction of the new railroad and for a short while the family then lived at the tent town of Silver Cliff near what is now Lusk. The father and uncle operated a general merchandise business for a short time before the family followed the construction on west. Before returning to Sioux County the family spent a short time at Cheyenne traveling by covered wagon.
Mr. Parsons knew the beginnings of Sioux County and Harrison as few others did. The father eventually moved into the Hat, Charles, Mattie, and Susie Mae as the 33 Ranch. When the children needed schooling the family moved into Harrison for six months of a year. Con later attended the Chadron Academy and Nebraska Wesleyan University at Lincoln. He wrote in the anniversary article that he made a trip to Fremont on a stock train, and didn't have the funds to get home from Lincoln at Christmas but worked his way for his college training.
On returning to Sioux County he became deputy county clerk and later added the responsibility of county superintendent of schools. It was during this time that he met the school teacher, Susie Tuper, and married her June 20, 1906. They had six children: Bruce, Waldo, Eunice, Charles, Mattie, and Sisie Mae.
While still living in town he supervised the home ranch and filed on it under the Kinkade Homestead Law. He also started building a herd of fine cattle which came to be recognized on the markets and he came to be known as one of the leading stockmen of western Nebraska.
His first wife died, and January 17, 1938, he married Blanche Kirk Porter who died April 16, 1957. He and Grace Baschky were married October 12, 1959.
He is survived by his wife, Grace , two sons, Bruce of Harrison and Waldo of Torrington; a daughter Susie Mae Atencio of Denver; two sisters, Mrs. Virginia Monroe of Miles City, Mont., and Mrs. Mattie Carley of Dalton, Nebr.; and three brothers, Charles of Torrington, John and Frank of Harrison. There are three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
This gravestone photo was found on nebraskagravestones.org