The old newspapers can be a great source of genealogy information. An interesting article of history was recorded for the family of Albert Shively and wife Dora who lived in Laurel, Cedar County, Nebraska. It must have been of great concern to the parents when they discovered their son, Samuel Burdette Shively, was missing. Following are the newspaper reports which recorded the incident.
Evening World-Herald, Omaha, NE, Saturday, July 11, 1914, Page 7, Column 5:
Disappearance Of Boy Arouses Whole County
Burdette, 19-Year-Old Son of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Shively, Mysteriously Missing
Hundreds on foot and in Autos With Boy Scouts Scour the Country in Vein.
Special Dispatch to the World-Herald.
Hartington, Neb., July 10 – A young man answering the description of Burdette Shively, the young man who disappeared from his home near Laurel July 4, was seen near Crofton, twenty miles northwest of here. The young man was inquiring for work on a farm. Investigation is being made to learn if he is the missing party.
One hundred dollars reward is offered by the lad’s father, Bert Shively, for his son’s recovery.
Young Shively, in company with many others, came to this city to celebrate the Fourth and remained to return on the night freight, leaving this city at about 1 o’clock. With other young men, among them his brother, he was seen at the station platform before the train pulled out, but after that no one remembers seeing him.
His parents became alarmed as he is very much attached to his home. Monday, as nothing was heard from him, searching parties numbering nearly 100 men were formed, who walked on each side of the railroad tracks from Laurel to Coleridge and from Coleridge to this city searching for traces. It was feared he might have fallen from the train and crawled into the grass or brush near the right-of-way or have been slugged and thrown from the train. This search proved fruitless. Neighboring towns were furnished with a description of him.
He is described as follows: Height, 5 feet 8 inches; weight, 135 pounds, straight dark brown hair, hazel eyes, smooth shaven, tanned, shoulders sloping, walks very erect with head thrown well back; wore blue serge suit, name and address attached in inside pocket of coat, permanent crease sewn in trouser, white soft shirt with narrow stripe, oxford shoes and gray checked summer cap.
A large number of autos from this city, Laurel and Coleridge vicinity were out looking for traces of the boy.
The boy scouts patrol of twenty scouts went out to join in the search.
The World-Herald, Omaha, NE, Saturday, July 18, 1914, Page 11, Column 7:
Young Shively Home, Refuses To Explain
Special Dispatch to the World-Herald.
Laurel, Neb., July 17 -- There is great rejoicing here over the return of Burdette Shively, who disappeared the 4th. Foul play was suspected. Citizens searched for days, his father, Bert Shively, a prosperous farmer, scarcely pausing to sleep or eat. The young man is 19 and of the highest reputation. He was finally located near Gayville, S.D. He declines to say why he caused his friends so much worry, but insists there was nothing wrong at home. He is prominent in church work and a teacher in the Presbyterian Sunday school. His mysterious disappearance caused the greatest sensation every known to this community.
The family of Albert Shively and wife Dora are found on the 1910 Nebraska census in Cedar County, Precinct 21. Listed in the family are Albert B Shively, age 39, born in Michigan and wife Dora H, age 39, born in Michigan. The following children were all listed as born in Nebraska: son Samuel, age 14; son Bert, age 12; son Elmer, age 10; daughter Grace, age 8; son, Clarence, age 6; son Clyde, age 6; daughter Olive, age 4; and son William, age 2. Albert and Dora continue to reside in Cedar County in 1920 and 1930.
Several members of the family are buried in the Laurel Cemetery, Laurel, NE, Cedar County. There is one large family stone with the surname Shively which is surrounded by the smaller stone with the name of the deceased and year of birth and year of death. Buried in the family plot are: Albert Shively 1870-1931, Dora Shively 1871-1949, Samuel 1895-1953, Bert Dewey 3-Sep-1897 died 11-May-1918, Elmer 1899-1963, Clarence 1903-1967, and Clarence 1903-1972. Also buried are the following spouses: Edna A Shively 1896-1978, wife of Samuel; Luella M Shively 1905-2001, wife of Clyde; Ethel M 1902-1986 wife of Clarence; and Florence O. Shively 1909-1992 wife of William.
Further research of the newspapers in Cedar County might produce obituaries for these family members. There is a newspaper that is published in Laurel, Nebraska by the name of the Laurel Advocate. With only the dates of death for the family members it is a little more difficult to locate the obituaries. Many of the small newspapers publish a review of the year including those who have passed. It would be fortunate for those researching this Shively family if this was the case for the Laurel Advocate.