Historical Details

Klint Family

Courtesy of Our Heritage: Niobrarans and Neighbors, 12/22/2020


by Mrs. Thel Breamer & Mrs. Tom Bower

The history of this homestead site (Klint) may have really began in an Omaha hospital when a doctor advised a 15 year old man to go west and spend hours in the great outdoors. Sometime later Jim Klint arrived in the vicinity of Manville, Wyo. and here he found a welcome in the home of Tom Black. I also recall the names of Wilson and Harry Card, but I do not know if he made his home with these families or not.

Later he was employed by the "77" Ranch, where he undoubtedly met my mother who taught school there. It must have been here that David Scott received his first instruction in the sheep business. In later years they laughingly told me that Scotty was fresh from the city and didn’t know a lamb from a jack rabbit.

Regard­ less of the truth, or lack of truth, of this story, Scotty proved to be a very dependable herder.

Jim and Scotty became life long friends, and they, along with Scotty's mother, known lovingly as Aunty Scott, filed on homesteads in the Little Lightning community.

That year 1917 proved to be an eventful one. It included the marriage of Susie Hollenbeck and this was followed closely with a call to join Uncle Sam's service. Between the two events was the necessity of making arrangements for the sale or care of livestock, hay, etc. After the end of World War I, Jim and his family returned to the homestead.

One story of the “good ol days" stands out in my mind. It seemed that Jim had one old cow who always found the grass greener on the other side of the fence. One day Elva Randa got tired of this four footed trespasser and decided to teach her a les­son with a loaded shotgun. Instead of just scaring her, the intruder evidently drop­ped in her tracks, and Elva came rushing down to tell Jim and helped butcher her.

By the time the story reached my ears they could laugh about it--but I have an idea that the words spoken at the time weren't heard in polite society.

As time flew by an additional "80" was purchased from the State and the home­stead "shack" was moved near Little Lightn­ing Creek. Tom Clarks, who lived across the creek, moved away and their house was moved to enlarge ours.   The larger room is still used as a kitchen, and the other as a utility room.

Later Mrs. Ballards' one room-house joined the buildings on the Klint property to become a storehouse, playhouse, bunkhouse and a washouse, as the needs changed. For years it was located between the barn and the house. It is now the building just south of the house.

What a wonderful day when the water well became more than a dream, and water could be had from the pump, instead of being dipped from the "spring" in the creek. Wash day brings back memories of seeing Mother and Dad carrying a bucket of water in each arm and a tub of water between them--with a couple of little girls tagging along behind carrying Karo syrup pails.

Then came the fall when most of the cattle were sold and a small bunch of sheep took their place. What a heartache it must have been when the unexpected lambs began to arrive in the cold of winter and very little protection was available.

It seems that things went along with­ out leaving any special memories until about 1929, when the problems of life began to affect mine. Dad (Jim) became quite ill and neighbors became a very valuable asset to life. Scotty must have been working at the Horseshoe ranch that year, because when the sheepherder quit, I and old Nellie (the horse) attempted to hold the herd of sheep together.  One day in late summer stands out very clearly in my mind--I can still visualize Dad coming over the hill to where I was. He sat down to rest and we talked. He told me how sheep grazed in one general direction and how to go around and wait for the lead to come to me. From then on my work became more interesting and more of a challenge of outwitting the animals (both sheep and coyotes).

It seems that one memory leads to another and that I could ramble on forever but now I will try to do a bit of summarizing in a factual way.

The Strains who homesteaded west of us and south of the Scotts, have both passed away. Their daughter, Mable, lived in Denver for a number of years.

The ranch now includes Mrs. Ballad's who has passed away.  The Clarks were in Casper several years ago, I've no knowledge of them now. Mr. and Mrs. Jack Gittlieb moved to Laramie and have both passed away. Their son Jack Jr. lost his life while with the medics of the Marines during World War

II.  Elva Randa, whose homestead is the west pasture, moved to Niobrara, Nebr., where she was a librarian. I have not heard from her for several years, and assume she has passed away as she was ill the last time I had heard.  The Tim Jones family moved away in the '20s. They have two children and the last I knew the daughter had two chil­dren and lived in California.  Their home­ stead is now part of the east pasture, and it is just a bit west of the windmill where the community hall was built for community use in the earlier days.

Dad passed away due to a heart attack in 1953. Mother preceded him 1938. The place was then sold to Mr. and Mrs. Tom Bower who will continue the history. David Scott continues to make his home in his original house. I live near Walton, Nebr. with my husband and mother-in-law, and daughter, Sharon who is a senior in high school. Our son has been recently married and lives in Lincoln. My sister, Jessie and her family reside in Idaho, and the younger sister, Lillian makes her home in California.


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Related/Linked Records

Record Type Name
Obituary Klint, James (10/10/1888 - 11/29/1953) View Record
Obituary Klint, Susie (11/30/1890 - 05/12/1938) View Record