Shot at, cussed at, starved

Shot at, cussed at, starved

La Plata County families drawn by 150-year-old act remain
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In this family photograph, Pat Greer’s oldest sister, Allie Jane Greer, is a newborn in 1922 with their parents Frank and Hattie Greer in front of their home in southwestern La Plata County. The home, which also housed the Marvel post office for many years, burned down in 1961, and Pat and Lila Greer rebuilt on the exact same spot.
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The homestead patent being held by sisters LaVina Mars, left, and Barbara Jefferies was filed in 1883 by their great-grandmother Elizabeth Wommer. The land is near the Forest Lakes subdivision in the Pine River Valley. The family eventually owned several homestead patents, or deeds.
Ep 121229610
Ep 121229610
Pat Greer’s father, Frank, homesteaded in Marvel in 1903 at what is now called Greer Corner. While a new house has been built where the original once stood, several buildings on the property still stand more than a century later, including the smokehouse, seen here, and two barns.
Ep 121229610
Ep 121229610
Henry and Emma Ludwig were among the early homesteaders in Barbara Jefferies’ and LaVina Mars’ family. Henry Ludwig killed himself after being involved in an altercation over water with another homesteader named Abner Lowell. Ludwig killed Lowell and shot Lowell’s son.
Ep 121229610
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On chilly winter day, Pat Greer, 79, gears up to head out and do the daily chores that come with running a ranch and farm. He has lived on his family’s homestead, which his father began building in 1903, almost all of his life.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=2&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
In this family photograph, Pat Greer’s oldest sister, Allie Jane Greer, is a newborn in 1922 with their parents Frank and Hattie Greer in front of their home in southwestern La Plata County. The home, which also housed the Marvel post office for many years, burned down in 1961, and Pat and Lila Greer rebuilt on the exact same spot.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=3&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
Pat and Lila Greer’s "new" home, built in 1961-62 after the previous home burned down, sits on the foundation of the home built by Pat Greer’s parents, Frank and Hattie Greer, in Marvel on Frank Greer’s homestead.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=4&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
Frank Greer’s first home on his homestead in 1903 was a picket house, built with logs and sticks standing upright with mud in the chinks. He later built this home, which also served as a general store and Post Office for the Marvel area.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=5&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
Still standing after almost 110 years, this small barn was built by Pat Greer’s father Frank when he homesteaded in Marvel in 1903. Along with another barn and the smokehouse, it’s one of the few original buildings on the property, where Pat and his wife, Lila, have lived since their marriage in 1953.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=6&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
In this undated family photograph, Pat Greer is seen driving a tractor on his family’s homestead in southwestern La Plata County. Pat and Lila Greer’s two sons and three grandsons still run cattle and work the land on the family homestead that dates from 1903.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=7&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
The horizon stretches as far as the eye can see at Pat Greer’s family homestead in Marvel that dates to 1903. The Greers, in partnership with their two sons and three grandsons, still run cattle and raise crops on the land. Here, one of the original fences still stands.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=8&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
Pat and Lila Greer, who live on the land his father, Frank, homesteaded in Marvel in 1903, enjoy telling stories about growing up in southwestern La Plata County. Lila Greer, who grew up on her family’s homestead in Picnic Flats, southeast of Marvel, said, "We raised Cain and kids here," as she looked around her home of more than 50 years.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=9&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477783735&imageversion=1by1
In a joining of two homesteading families, Frank Wommer Sr., the son of Nicholas and Elizabeth Wommer, married Hattie Ludwig, the daughter of Henry and Emma Ludwig, top, while his twin brother, Louie Wommer, married Hattie’s sister Rose. Frank and Hattie’s granddaughters LaVina Mars and Barbara Jefferies grew up on the Wommer homestead, filed in 1883, and Mars still lives there.
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=10&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478900054&imageversion=1by1
Sisters LaVina Mars, left, and Barbara Jefferies hold one of several original homestead patents, or deeds, branches of their family filed in the Pine River Valley. Mars still lives on the earliest homestead, which their great-grandmother Elizabeth Wommer filed in 1883. The homestead is near the Forest Lakes subdivision, land which their family also once owned.
Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=10&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478900054
Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=11&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478900054&imageversion=1by1
Pat Greer’s father, Frank, homesteaded in Marvel in 1903 at what is now called Greer Corner. While a new house has been built where the original once stood, several buildings on the property still stand more than a century later, including the smokehouse, seen here, and two barns.
Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=11&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478900054
Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=12&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478900054&imageversion=1by1
Pat Greer has a lot of stories to tell about the almost 110 years his family has owned its homestead near Marvel, and he doesn’t sugarcoat how hard life was. "We didn’t know we were poor, because we were better off than other poor people we knew,"
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Bilde?site=du&date=20121228&category=news01&artno=122809999&ref=ph&item=13&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478900054&imageversion=1by1
Henry and Emma Ludwig are among the early homesteaders in Barbara Jefferies’ and LaVina Mars’ family tree. Henry Ludwig killed himself after being involved in an altercation over water with another homesteader named Abner Lowell. Ludwig killed Lowell and shot Lowell’s son.
Homestead Act facts

In its original version, the Homestead Act of 1862 allowed anyone at least 21 years old who was a head of household to file for 160 acres. Easterners, immigrants, former slaves and women all homesteaded.

The homesteader had to build a...

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