Every year, the Tri-State Cowgirls, in conjunction with the Tri-State Oldtime Cowboys, recognize someone for their "hall of fame" award. This year the honor was bestowed upon Bob M, also a bull session contributor. Here is the little write-up that Mrs. Soapweed and I came up with for Sybil Berndt to read at this years' breakfast. I am proud that "Bob M" is my dad.
This rancher’s Sandhills roots began in 1885 when his grandfather walked to this area from Valentine, which was then the end of the railroad. His first wild horseback ride was before he was born, when his mother wore out a saddle horse while warning the neighborhood of a fast-moving prairie fire. He was born February 21, 1923. When it came time for formal education, it entailed a five-mile one way ride from his parents’ farm to school in Tuthill, South Dakota, and then back home the five miles every evening. Later the family leased a ranch at the head of LaCreek, south of Martin, South Dakota. There he and his younger brother attended a country school where there were fourteen boys and a man teacher.
In 1930, the family purchased a ranch just south of Merriman, Nebraska. The boys then attended school in town, where our subject graduated from high school in 1941. Then he went on to a one year post graduate course at the Curtis, Nebraska school of agriculture. The following fall he attended one semester at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.
He worked for area ranchers Fred Tuchenhagen and Clyde Weber before he and his father purchased the headquarters part of the Bar T Ranch northeast of Merriman. There he and his brother ranched and batched for two years before his brother got married in September of 1949. Our subject met his bride-to-be at his brother’s wedding. She was the sister of an army buddy from Minnesota.
They were married on October 15, 1950. For the next couple years, both couples lived in adjoining houses on the ranch and shared a common “modern” bathroom. The parents of the brothers moved into town, and the younger brother and his family took over operation of the home place south of Merriman. Our rancher and his family continued to operate the old Bar T, which had been renamed the “Green Valley Hereford Ranch”. Four children were born to the couple, and the only son and his family continue operation of the ranch today.
Our subject has contributed to the community and the ranching way of life in many ways. He is a member of the Masonic Pioneer Lodge 219 in Martin, South Dakota; the Merriman Methodist Church; the Sandhills Cattle Association; the Nebraska Cattlemen; Sandpainters Art Guild; Tri-State Old Time Cowboys; and a local writer’s guild. He has written his autobiography entitled SANDHILLS SATISFACTION, and writes a column for area newspapers under the heading “Friends and Fancies”. Now that he is retired from ranching, he enjoys helping others in compiling their lifetime remembrances in written form. He also enjoys traveling and visiting with family, friends and neighbors.
We tip our hat to Bob Moreland from Merriman, Nebraska.
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