His Early Years Before 1900
Born Dec. 1873 in Virginia (maybe West Virginia)
Sometime in the next 7 years his family came to
Nebraska, first to a farm in Shelton Precinct and then to Kearney
1892 – Graduated from Kearney High
Couple years later he was
working in Tom Ross’s store. (Probably a shoe store) When working on a window frame he accidently
hit his left hand with an ax chopping off his third finger at the second
joint and cutting the little finger. He left a trail of blood when he went
in search of a doctor.
The next year Roy accepted a position as
bookkeeper for J. P. Gibbons Co. They had a feed store in Kearney & a grain
elevator in Gibbon
years later he moved up to foreman; Also that year, 1897, he got married.
Shahan was active in Kearney society. He participated in Literary Society debates
and played baseball, 3rd base, for the Kearney team.
Then Life Changed
Family Man: 1900 census–
Now 26, Employed as a grain buyer, living on 5th Ave, had two children.
1900, Jan 2 – Roy
Shahan’s little boy was 2. At 3 months he had swallowed an open safety pin which
the family doctor was finally able to remove after a month. Now he swallowed another
and larger open safety pin. Dr. Bell was able with some difficulty to remove
a medium sized safety pin from the depths of his throat.
1901, July 13 – Roy Shahan started overland for
Denver, with team and wagon and supplies for a month’s outing
fishes and mountain lions.
Maybe did more than
fish and hunt
1901, Sept. 4
– Moved to Denver, to work for the Colorado Milling and Elevator company
1904, June 2 – A telegram
from La Jara, Colo., stated that Roy Shahan was resting easily and getting
along as well as could be expected.??????
Later in the month we
learned that Shahan had one of his legs cut off at La Jara, Colo. [No
explanation of how.] He was getting along nicely and was able to get
about with the aid of crutches.
Oct 7 – Shahan family moved back to Kearney & bought a home
During the next 6 years he was again active in Kearney affairs
Worked for the
Westbrook-Gibbons Grain Co. & then as foreman Trans-Mississippi Grain Co
This was the time when he served as Worshipful
Master of Masonic Lodge #46
He was also elected to the
His baseball playing days were over but
When a group of Kearney citizens were trying to
find a place for an athletic park, Shahan was selected secretary of the
group and was one of three men appointed to a committee to look at sites.
The following spring when a board of directors was
selected, Roy Shahan was one of those elected even though he asked not to be
included. Finally agreed but a week later he resigned saying he did not have
the time. He would, however, help out whenever he could.
Returned to Colorado
1910 – moved to Alamosa
Selling real estate
Lived there the rest of his life; died in Oct. 1939
He was a man who did not
let his handicaps hold him back.
Found in the Newspaper
Food Samples - Set the scene: Weekends in our
grocery stores – free food samples – enough to make a meal
A notice appeared in the paper on Dec. 2, 1893 –
S. R. Colton, representing the C. F. Blanke Tea
and Coffee company, will hold daily receptions at the opera house store of
the Kearney Grocery company every day this week. Stoddard’s orchestra will
furnish a program each afternoon and Saturday evening. The most delicious
coffee in the world will be served free to all who call and each lady will
be presented with a souvenir.
Bicycle Race - Sept 26, 1894 – [Big bicycle race
event the next two days with 1-2 thousand people expected each day] An
unusual spectacle will be witnessed in this city tomorrow. The exact hour is
unknown, and people who want to witness it should be on the streets early
and stay all day, as they may never have another opportunity. It is
announced that the street cars will run.
[This is the last time I can find that a street
car is mentioned in Kearney]
Around the County - March 3, 1899
Pleasanton – Fred Rubart, who has been visiting
with relatives in Kansas, has returned after an absence of about two months.
Some of the young ladies are wearing broad smiles since Fred has returned.
Sweetwater – A. Dunn, a widower and his step
daughter took a trip to Grand Island last week and got married. He is a
pretty old man, and the girl is about 19 years old.
– Speed Limit – Summer 1909 – City council passed an
ordinance setting the speed limit at 10 mph on Central, west 22nd St, and on
streets by schools, parks and public buildings. The rest of the streets had
a limit of 15 mph except Eastlawn Boulevard to the Military Academy and west
24th west of the tailrace.