William Arthur Danley, Businessman
Studio portrait of William Danley taken
by R. Busse, Chadron, Nebraska.
The back of the photograph is signed to Miss Jennie Hollenbeck,
William's future wife.
Born in Danvers, Illinois, in 1860, William Arthur Danley
moved to Niobrara, Nebraska, with his parents and sister
in 1879. He began doing grading work for the Chicago, Burlington
and Quincy Railroad and in 1884 purchased a dairy in Chadron.
In 1888 he married Jennie Hollenbeck. After holding several different
jobs, he purchased Lambert's bakery in Chadron. Danley twice
served as postmaster of Chadron, and served on the city council
for six years. In 1907 he sold his bakery and purchased a book
and stationary business, which he operated until his death in
William Arthur Danley began his 1888 diary not with a set of expectations for the volume,
but with an accounting of his life to date.
Chadron, Dawes Co. Neb
Feb. 1, 1888
I'm going to start a Journal and if
any body wants to know me before this just strike me for information
I was borne in the North room of
the house on the Old Danley Homestead in Stouts Grove McLean
Co Ills. 1 mi from Danvers. Sept 2, 1860.
I have lived in Illinois, Iowa
& Misouri. I came to Nebraska in 1879 Crossed the Missouri
on Jack Thomas' Little Bee. Stayed in Niobrara 2 years Was drownded
out by the Flood in Spring of '81 and pulled for the R.R. at
Oural. Worked on the R.R. up to Valentine stayed at Ft. Niobrara
2 years Then pulled for the White River Country.
Am here yet on my Homestead, with
Pa, Ma, Maggie, Leta, & Warren. I am running the Chadron
Dairy have 20 cows 7 horses, 2 pigs a Dog and an awful cold.
So Be It for a start.
His most important entry is that for the
day of his wedding to Jennie Hollenbeck,
in which he accounts for his entire day from rising at 4:00 a.m.
to retiring at midnight.
Wed 19 (Dec)
Got up at 4 H.M. E.B. But did not
deliver milk Pa did, Stayed at home the first time for two years
Rode Daisy to town Got my hair cut and shaved Got a Buggy, Bought
a clock. Got home at 11.
P.M. H.M. Got ready to Get Married
Maggie & I started for town at 5-30 Got to town at 5-20 took
Maggie to Mrs. Hollenbecks, found the Front room full of Parasants.
Went down and combed my hair. Got back at 6-45 Reached Mr. Powelle
at 6-50 He spent a few minutes drilling us and at 7-10 We started
for the Church (It was full of People anxiously waiting us. The
music by Miss Wilson started at 7-15 and we marched up under
the Horse shoe and Mr. Powell Married us. I was a little weak
in the knees, but got through all O.K. and shook hands with everybody.
Went back to Mother Hollenbecks and packed up our preasants and
got home at 9.
Eat a Lunch and Went to Bed at 12 0'clock.
Even more interesting than his account
of his wedding is William's entry for the next day. Clearly his diary was important enough that he
wished to share its secrets with the person closest to him, his
Got up at 4. H.M. E.B.
Helped Ma & My Wife dress Turkey and numerous other things
Johnie & Henry ___________ & Mrs D. Lewis took dinner
with us. Tom & Grace stoped a few min.
P.M. H.M. Had this Book looked through by My Wife and Went to