July 11, was an exciting day for several of volunteers at the Creighton Historical Society. Mert Crockett, Virginia Buermann and Larry and Bev Schwindt headed out to Jim Wagner’s farm to dismantle and bring back to Creighton a special gift to the Center.
Jim Wagner had gifted a Single Seat Buggy, called a “Dr. Buggy” for display in the building. The single horse hitch, which was part of the original buggy, was also included. Jim believed that the cost was “somewhere between $300. and $800.
Jim had already begun the process of taking the buggy apart and then directed the group of how to prepare it for the travel to Creighton.
The buggy was further dismantled on the street in front of the Historical Museum and the seat removed which allowed it to be carried inside. Jim then directed the larger group of volunteers, Jace Hoferer, Jared Prohosca, Dennis Fuchtman and Lyle Larson to reassemble it. Jim then had the pleasure of adding his original whip to the whip holder.
Jim’s History lesson for the day included the following:
Matthias Wagner, Jim’s Grandfather, settled west of Creighton, NE in 1871. These were already hard times and then the depression followed in 1897. Still, in 1910, the family was able to buy a Single Seat Buggy, for use to drive to town for necessities. Over the years it was more important to shed newer machinery and the buggy sat out in the elements. It was later restored with all the iron on the buggy being original and the wheels were new wood and seat made over; the buggy was then always “shedded” to preserve it.
Matthias’s son Ed, one of 10 children, who farmed 2 west and 1 north of Creighton was in line to possess the buggy and then it was passed down to Jim Wagner.
Jim said “It’s tough to let it go” and “I hate to part with it “ but I believe in educating our future generations and this is another way I can do this”. Jim has been involved with “telling his true life stories” during class time at school and several local care centers’ for many years.
Jim remarked that he always wanted to ride in the buggy for parades but “everything had to fall in place” for that to happen and there was always a problem with weather, a horse, or the time involved to get it done.
The Historical Society will host a Grand Opening on Friday, August 15 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mark your calendars and stop in for refreshments and guided tours from the Historical Society Members.