Clara Nell "Nellie" (ZumBrunnen) Christian



Nellie Christian
Nellie Christian

Photo courtesy of the Joshua Brackett Eagle Scout Project
Photo courtesy of the Joshua Brackett Eagle Scout Project

(October 22, 1889 - October 22, 1984)


The Lusk Herald
November 1, 1984


Nellie C. Christian

Nellie C. Christian died Oct. 22 at Niobrara Memorial Hospital in Lusk- the 95th anniversary of her birth. Born Clara Nell ZumBrunnen on Oct. 22, 1889, daughter of Jake and Ida ZumBrunnen, Mrs. Christian was the first child born in the Pleasant Ridge Community (later called Kirtley). She was a life-long resident of Niobrara County, and the county's oldest native at the time of her death.

Nellie was educated in the schools of the community. She was married to James W. Christian April 10, 1907. They moved to a ranch on Indian Creek where they raised eight children. In 1928 they purchased the Node ranch. The couple moved to Lusk in 1936 where they opened the Lusk Sales Pavilion. During the later years of his life, Jim Christian was a horse racing enthusiast and also a pioneer irrigator.

Mr. Christian died Oct 12, 1952 and Nellie continued to live in the family home until declining health forced her to move to the nursing home. Mrs. Christian's interests were varied and very dear to her. She was an enthusiastic gardener who kept her grounds well landscaped. She was a skilled and capable cook who used her talents to make an occasion more festive or to bring comfort in a time of sadness.

She was an ardent supporter of the Congregational Church, involved in every facet of the Church's program. She belonged to Eastern Star and to the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Nellie Christian had a great interest in history of the area, and a remarkable ability to place things in their proper perspective. She often spoke and wrote with fondness of the pioneer days, when the Kirtley area was such a thriving community. But she was very realistic about the hardships and unpleasantness and prevalence of death on the frontier.

She was interested in having an accurate written record of the early days preserved. But she admitted in an article she wrote for the Diamond Jubilee Edition of the Lusk Herald in 1961, "The most interesting and valuable records, however, would be the word of mouth from the real pioneers. But the hour for that is becoming very late..."

Mrs. Christian outlived six of her eight children. Preceding her in death were her children Evelyn Knori, John Christian, Blanche Schaefer, Frank Christian, Dr. Bruce Christian and George Christian.

She is survived by two sisters Dorcas Bigelow, Scottsbluff, Edna Ammons, Denver, daughter Edith Culver and her son Charles Christian, and numerous third, fourth and fifth generation descendants.

The death of Nellie Christian is the passing of one of the last true pioneers. The life of Nellie Christian was an example of the willingness to adapt, the strength and resiliency of character that made the pioneers such a sturdy breed.

Services for Nellie Christian were held at Lusk Congregational Church in Lusk, Oct. 25, 1984 at 10:30 a.m. with Rev. Roy Howell officiating and Eastern Star Service. Music was Jane Bardo, organist and Mark Lohr sang "How Great Thou Art" and "Beautiful Isle."
Active pallbearers were James Knori, Bruce Culver, Keith Culver, Jay Schafer, Chris Christian and Bill St. John.

Interment was at Lusk Cemetery.

Arrangements were by Peet Mortuary.

Memorials may be made to the Congregational Church or Niobrara County Nursing Home.




Related Genealogy Entries: 'Clara Nell (ZumBrunnen) Christian'

Thomas Everett Ammons (October 5, 1895 - August 3, 1953)

Delmar J. Bigelow (March 27, 1890 - August 5, 1951)

Dorcas Maud Bigelow (March 25, 1892 - July 7, 1988)

Jeffrey D. Bigelow (November 17, 1952 - April 20, 2007)

Warren L. Bigelow (June 13, 1923 - May 23, 1995)

Marjorie A. Blackmore (December 15, 1927 - January 16, 2012)

David Frederick Briggs (December 16, 1966 - December 17, 1966)

Montivel A. Burke (July 20, 1885 - December 13, 1967)

Nellie Burke (Date Unknown - October 14, 1957)

Amy Edithe Christian (October 19, 1880 - January 27, 1944)

Andrew L. Christian (July 26, 1882 - March 4, 1974)

Catharine A. Christian (February 8, 1859 - December 18, 1892)

Charles LeRoy Christian (July 14, 1927 - February 22, 2000)

Charles A. Christian (February 9, 1881 - May 16, 1903)

Chris Christian (June 25, 1945 - March 1, 1997)

Chris L. Christian (April 17, 1850 - August 25, 1934)

Daniel Cris Christian (May 13, 1927 - November 29, 2012)

Dora B. Christian (December 29, 1879 - March 5, 1901)

Dorris Beth Christian (August 2, 1913 - May 5, 1973)

Elsie A. Christian (June 5, 1910 - March 16, 2002)

Eva E. Christian (July 21, 1859 - March 31, 1945)

Flora E. Christian (April 6, 1886 - October 1, 1944)

George Andrew Christian (August 9, 1911 - November 20, 1981)

James Franklin Christian (September 7, 1915 - September 13, 1976)

James H. Christian (March 30, 1884 - January 2, 1962)

James William Christian (April 8, 1885 - October 12, 1952)

John Henry Christian (August 19, 1922 - October 3, 1974)

Leonard F. Christian (February 26, 1883 - June 14, 1965)

Lillian Carol Christian (September 15, 1899 - February 8, 1973)

Mabel G. Christian (November 24, 1891 - February 23, 1893)

Mary Ellen Christian (January 5, 1925 - October 19, 1977)

Orpha Ellen Christian (August 2, 1888 - December 22, 1960)

Raymond Elwood Christian (July 8, 1892 - April 19, 1974)

Robert Bruce Christian (October 13, 1924 - October 19, 1978)

Rollin William Christian (February 17, 1888 - August 6, 1919)

Ruby Ellen Christian (May 21, 1927 - May 16, 2013)

Stanford Clark Christian (August 19, 1934 - November 4, 1993)

Edith Mae Culver (August 31, 1920 - February 26, 2007)

Wayne William Culver (July 23, 1910 - September 26, 1973)

Gwen Elaine Denton (March 7, 1942 - April 2, 2008)

James Christian Disney (November 10, 1949 - November 14, 1949)

Freida Eshleman (Date Unknown - March 6, 1977)

Mary E. Fisher (August 19, 1918 - July 30, 1994)

Vicki Lynn Fuller (October 28, 1947 - October 18, 2010)

Gladys Lenore Hagerman (July 12, 1909 - December 19, 1984)

Floyd H. Hanson (Date Unknown - June 10, 1969)

Neils Henrick Hanson (August 22, 1876 - July 27, 1957)

Ione Lewis Hruza (July 21, 1917 - April 10, 2002)

Georgia Johns (1901 - June 18, 1953)

Emanuel A. Knori (December 18, 1902 - November 20, 1965)

Ida Evelyn Knori (December 1, 1909 - May 5, 1936)

Benjamin Wieland Lohr (October 7, 1906 - August 18, 1979)

Garnet Lohr (April 6, 1912 - September 21, 1996)

Nelsena C. Park (1886 - July 18, 1959)

Edna Faye Percy (June 9, 1935 - June 15, 2007)

Bob D. Phipps (September 29, 1931 - June 2, 1991)

Charles Rodney Phipps (December 25, 1929 - June 19, 1984)

Juanita Phipps (July 3, 1909 - March 9, 1999)

Julian M. Phipps (December 4, 1907 - February 4, 1986)

Tony James Phipps (July 21, 1956 - August 27, 2012)

George Marcus Reynolds (December 13, 1892 - November 2, 1928)

Dora Blanche Schaefer (February 6, 1908 - February 7, 1978)

Lloyd Frederick Schaefer (May 22, 1912 - December 1, 1959)

Charles Theodore Schroefel (October 18, 1878 - August 30, 1948)

Catherine Sheldon (April 18, 1920 - February 26, 2007)

James Alford Sheldon (April 11, 1916 - December 8, 1970)

Lennea Slagle (September 22, 1938 - December 1, 2002)

Ray Whipple (March 10, 1883 - April 10, 1967)

Charles Henry Wormwood (November 27, 1876 - May 22, 1953)

Florence Wormwood (May 22, 1879 - July 30, 1969)

Aubrey M. ZumBrunnen (January 12, 1910 - September 29, 1991)

Bama T. ZumBrunnen (May 13, 1880 - June 14, 1964)

Barry Lee ZumBrunnen (April 11, 1952 - September 14, 1952)

Eva Loretta ZumBrunnen (June 10, 1859 - April 18, 1934)

Jacob J. ZumBrunnen (April 6, 1858 - December 15, 1940)

Leslie Lee ZumBrunnen (April 22, 1908 - January 9, 1997)

Olive Audrey ZumBrunnen (July 14, 1921 - December 28, 1999)

Roy Leslie ZumBrunnen (September 14, 1885 - January 23, 1972)

Stanley Arthur ZumBrunnen (January 17, 1894 - February 26, 1961)

Veda ZumBrunnen (March 29, 1890 - October 28, 1970)


Related Historical Entries: 'Clara Nell (ZumBrunnen) Christian'

From a Pioneer Album - Pleasant Ridge School

Kirtley, Wyoming






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