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Below is a family biography included in the book,  Biographical Souvenir of the Counties of Buffalo, Kearney, Phelps, Harlan and Franklin, Nebraska published in 1890 by F. A. Battey & Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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ANDREW BERKMAN is one of the early settlers on the Divide in Phelps county, and a highly respected and representative citizen. He was born in Sweden, December 23, 1835. His father, Andrew Anderson, a miner by occupation, was born in Sweden in 1806 and met his death at the age of forty-two, while engaged in mining. His mother, Anna Anderson, was also a native of Sweden, and was born in 1809. There were five children, three boys and two girls, born to these parents.

Andrew lived in Sweden until thirty-five years of age. On account of his father being poor he never had the advantage of an education, and while living in his native country he was principally engaged in working in sawmills. He embarked for America in 1869, being two months on the way. He located at Galesburg, Ill., and soon found employment at remunerative wages on the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy railroad. He continued at this for six months and then rented a farm and followed farming for seven years. Mr. Berkman came to Phelps county, Nebr., in February, 1878, and pre-empted a quarter in section 2, township 6, range 17. When he landed at Kearney he had but $3 in his pocket and was one hundred dollars in debt. He soon constructed a sod house, in which he lived for eleven years, and then built his present frame dwelling. The antelope at that time were abundant and would come around the house in large droves. He used corn-stalks for fuel, the timber being a distance of thirty miles away. The first three years his crops were almost total failures, and had it not been for odd jobs at blacksmithing which he did, he could not have lived. He lost his crops in 1879 and 1884 by hail, and altogether has seen pretty hard times since coming to Nebraska, but now has 120 acres broken out on his farm, and the place well improved. Mr. Berkman was married May 20, 1862, to Miss Breta Oleson, who was born in Sweden in 1840, and this union has been blessed with fourteen children, Mr. and Mrs. Berkman were formerly members of the Lutheran church, but since coming to Nebraska have joined the Methodists. In politics Mr. Berkman is a republican.

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the book, Biographical Souvenir of the Counties of Buffalo, Kearney, Phelps, Harlan and Franklin, Nebraska published in 1890 by F. A. Battey & Company. 

View additional Phelps County, Nebraska family biographies here: Phelps County, Nebraska Biographies

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