the years some of the family had moved about in the state, and Francis
R., the fourth son, who was a carpenter by trade, arrived in that
part of Illinois where the
lived and met and married Elizabeth E.
Hadlock, the youngest daughter of the Willard
Hadlock family. In their westward travels the two families
(Reiter and Hadlock) arrived about the same time in the vicinity of
a small town now known as Phillips,
Nebraska. At that
time Aurora was the end of the line of the Burlington R.R.
I do not know when the first members of either family arrived
in Nebraska nor how they came to settle in the same community, but
they were all there when my parents arrived in January, 1884.
I do not believe the two families had known each other before their
arrival in Nebraska. I do know that my mother had never met
any of my father’s people before their marriage.
Soon the railroad entended westward and having known in advance
it would pass that place, business men began to build stores and
saloons and even a bank and hotel. My father (Francis R. Reiter),
being a carpenter, soon had plenty of work. He built the first
houses and later both the churches and the school house. He built
a house for himself, and we lived in it until we moved to the farm
During the last year of his life my father (Francis R. Reiter)
often called to mind the way they lived in his childhood; how his
mother spun and wove the cloth from which their clothing was made;
how he and his brothers went hunting for squirrels and other game
in the woods that surrounded the clearing in which they lived.
They also gathered wild fruits in season, and after the first frosts,
when the nuts were falling, they gathered a big supply for winter.
Though they lived on the frontier, his was a happy childhood."
-Excerpt from The
Reiter & Hadlock Families, a typescript by Bessie Reiter
Sorenson, circa 1950.
Aurora Republican Register
18 October 1940
Frank Reiter Of
News reached Aurora friends
Thursday morning of the death
of Frank R. Reiter, Phillips pioneer
carpenter and farmer, who retir-
ed in 1911. Death occurred at the
home in that town the night be-
fore. Mr. Reiter had been in ill
health for an extended period of
time, and it had been known that
his extreme age would not permit
his recovery. He was one of the
early settlers, coming to Phillips
in 1884, when the town was being
built, and in which he had a part.
During his active years he had a
part in many community enter-
prises. He was 84 years of age.
Mr. Reiter is survived by three
daughters: Mrs. H. A. Lacy of
Scottsbluff; Mrs. Elmer Johnson,
of Lewellen, Nebr., and Mrs. W.
I. Sorensen, of Phillips. There are
also a large number of grandchil-
dren, great grandchildren and other
relatives. The body will rest
at the Peterson Funeral Home in
Aurora until time for the services
at the Methodist church in Phil-
lips next Sunday afternoon. The
obituary will appear in next
[NOTE: A search of the following week’s paper did
not reveal a subsequent obituary.]