Historical Details

Amend, Henry F. Jr. Personal History

Courtesy of Our Heritage: Niobrarans and Neighbors, 11/10/2020


Henry Amend, son of Heinrich and Anna Amend, attended the Prairie View School and worked on his parent’s homestead as a young boy. In 1927 he helped drill on one of the first wooden rotary drilling rigs in the discovery of the huge Lance Creek Oil Field. He married Gladys M. Sims, daughter of Albert and Della Sims who owned the Twenty Mile Ranch north of Lost Springs. Gladys was a school teacher, having attended the University of Wyoming for two years prior to their marriage on May 31, 1930. The young married couple went into ranching with the Sims for about three years.

The dry years of the 30's forced Hank, as he was better known, to seek employment in the oil fields again. They lived in Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming while working in those states, and they were constantly moving with the drilling rigs. They first lived in a tent with a wooden floor, but later got a small trailer house to follow the work. A daughter, Mae Ann was born in 1932. The family continued to follow the oil field work during the depression and before the war. They lived at Medicine Bow for a while and at Lovell when a  "wildcat" well which Hank was working "blew out” for several months.  Many acquaintanceships were made during these times, and many stories could be told about early day oil exploration in Wyoming.

Hank and Gladys had been saving their money for a ranch, and in 1938 they pur­chased the Harry B. Card Ranch one mile south of Lost Springs, Wyo.   The historic ranch had gone into receivership, and Frank Barrett, a Lusk attorney made the sale. The two main buildings of the ranch were:  a huge two-story barn which measures 30 ft. by 80 ft. and a long log bunk house and cook house combined that was used by men who worked the ranch.  The barn was built in 1918 for the many teams of horses that were used in haying the meadows.  The original Lost Springs is located below the barn and is the head of Lost Creek which rarely flows except for the spring.

Gladys' brother, Cecil Sims, of Man­ville wintered his cattle on the newly purchased ranch for a while, but in 1941, Hank had purchased enough cattle to stock the ranch. So they quit the oil field work and moved into the log house until a two story house could be moved into the ranch from the town of Lost Springs.  Another son, Marvin A., and daughter, Mary A., were born in 1941 and 1945.

Hank and Gladys continued to increase their land by purchasing adjoining property. The purchases included early day homesteads of such people as James Brink, Walter Galbraith, Moses Galbraith, William Bohenkemper, Albert Brink, W.R. Bridgroom, Delford Mc­ Grew, Raymond White and others.  In 1959 Heinrich Amend's homestead was also pur­chased.    The ranch land now lies in both Niobrara and Converse counties.

Mae Ann Amend married Robert Manning on Feb. 11, 1951.   They purchased the Twenty Mile Ranch from her grandmother, Della Sims, in 1952.  They have two child­ren, Alvin and Debra.

Marvin Amend was killed in an auto ac­cident in July 1970 at Fresno, Calif. where he lived with his wife, the former Patricia Lovgren, whom he married in 1969. Marvin had been employed by Pacific Gas and Electric Company for seven years. He spent three years in the U.S. Army and was sta­tioned in New Jersey.

Mary Amend married Charles Engebretsen on Sept. 5, 1965.They have two children, Merritt and Marlissa. Chuck graduated from the University of Wyoming in 1967 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Mary attended the University of Wyoming and Chadron State College. She graduated from the Academy Beauty College in 1967 The family now lives on the Amend Ranch at Lost Springs.

Gladys Amend died in 1961 and Henry Amend died in December, 1970. They were laid to rest with their son Marvin in the family plot at the Lusk Cemetery

Emma Gaukel (Mrs. Allen) is the only one surviving of the Amend family now as Marie Cox passed away Dec. 25, 1976.

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Related/Linked Records

Record Type Name
Obituary Amend, Gladys (10/20/1908 - 05/17/1963) View Record
Obituary Amend, Heinrich (09/09/1905 - 12/18/1970) View Record