Mrs. S. E. Applegate

Mrs S E Applegate cc1Mrs S E Applegate cc2

Calling card, embossed. Circa 1900

Price:  $15.00        Size:  About 2 and 1/2 x 3 and 7/8″

This calling card (for lack of a better term) with lovely rose design, has an attached (faded) photo of a woman. The flip side has some other writing on it, besides the identification of  “S. E. Applegate”  and  “Grandma Applegate.”  A name with address appears to be “Mrs. N. Fablinger, 3 E. 3rd St.” [?]  and below that it looks like  “A. L. Arble”  (or short for Arbunkle?) or perhaps it’s reading as,  “A. L. Auble.”  Then we have some more scribbling, from the photographer, we presume,  “Bust as is”  (or Best as is?) and, based on some research, a possible train time schedule, showing,  “431”  and  “Callaway.”  

The most likely candidate…

S. E. Applegate is a name that comes up in census records in various places around the United States. However, after a bit of research, the most likely candidate to fit this photo, is Mrs. Sarah E. Applegate, born Pennsylvania, January 1855. The 1900 Federal Census for Dorp Precinct (Gandy vicinity), Logan County, Nebraska reveals:  John Applegate, born Indiana, January 1839, wife Sarah E., born Pennsylvania, January 1855 and daughter Dalorus (Dolores) born Nebraska December 1881. The 1900 for Gandy lists Nicholas Fablinger, wife Lizzie and daughters, Margaret and Lizzie. And Abraham Auble (Abraham Lincoln Auble per additional records), shows up living in Garfield Precinct, Lincoln County, (southeast of Gandy, a short distance.) The name Callaway (originally thought to be the photographer’s name) shows up as a place name. The town of Callaway is located in Custer County, about 40 miles southeast of Gandy:  hence the thought that the 431 could have a been a quick note jotted down by the photographer re catching the train to meet his appointments. Just doing some quick browsing of historical newspapers, it appears there was a proposed Union Pacific Callaway-Gandy extension, though there was a line running from Kearney to Callaway in year 1900. “Detouring” a little to the subject of the town of Gandy and the proposed line we find an interesting June 1914 article in the Lincoln Star. (Click to enlarge.)


A little more about Sarah E. Applegate…

Per an family tree, Sarah was Sarah Elizabeth Clark, born January 25, 1855. She married John Burge Applegate December 21, 1873 in Lisbon, Iowa, and died May 10, 1909 in Gandy. The 1880 census shows John B. Applegate, wife Sarah, and children, Elizabeth, Cyrus and Frank, living in Precinct 7, Custer County, Nebraska. As previously mentioned, linking the photo to this Sarah is our best guess. Gandy, NE and vicinity seems to be the only area that shows all the names mentioned on the back of the card, though the “3 E. 3rd Ave[?]” is a bit of mystery – if that is what it says, it could be for nearby Arnold, NE.  

Sources:  Year: 1900; Census Place: Dorp, Logan, Nebraska; Roll: 934; Page: 2B; Enumeration District: 0156; FHL microfilm: 1240934. (

Year: 1900; Census Place: Gandy, Logan, Nebraska; Roll: 934; Page: 6A; Enumeration District: 0156; FHL microfilm: 1240934. (

“United States Census, 1880,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 6 June 2015), John B Applegate, Precinct 7, Custer, Nebraska, United States; citing enumeration district 171, sheet 292B, NARA microfilm publication T9 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 0746; FHL microfilm 1,254,746.

“Fire Call From Callaway.” The Kearney Daily Hub. 24 July 1900: p. 3. Web accessed June 6, 2015. (

“Supreme Court Orders A Depot.” The Lincoln Star. 28 Jun 1914: p. 3. Web accessed June 6, 2015. (

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