George T. RICE


GEORGE T. RICE dates his birth in Hampshire county, Massachusetts, on the 26th of January, 1832. His native county claimed him as a resident until 1850, when he went to Boston and remained six years, most of the time being spent in an architect's office, and keeping a restaurant. He then came to Minnesota, and carried on a farm in Washington county one year, when he sold it and removed to St. Paul, but after a short stay, went to Little Falls, Morrison county, where he was in the meat and cattle trade until 1862, three years of which he had a contract with the Government, to furnish meat for the garrison at Fort Ripley. He then located in Sherburne county, where he was engaged in wool-growing until 1864, when he removed to Langola and settled on his present farm. Mr. Rice owns three hundred and twenty acres of land, one hundred and seven of which is under cultivation. The first few years on this farm were devoted to wool-growing and stock-raising, but latterly he raises stock and produce only. He also owns and operates a saw mill near his residence. Mr. Rice has held the office of County Commissioner two terms, Justice of the Peace fifteen years, and Town Clerk one year. He was married in 1855, to Zeruah F. Bryant, of Massachusetts. The result of this union has been five children, four of whom are living; Mary L., George L., Willis A., and Frank W.

History of the Upper Mississippi Valley (1881) p. 360 [Langola]


George T. Rice, who resides on section 28 of Langola township, is one of the prominent citizens of Benton county. He is a man of active public spirit and has served his community in many ways and has gained a host of friends. He has been a resident of Rice’s station for many years and is the owner of a valuable estate in Benton county.

Mr. Rice was born in Massachusetts, January 26, 1831, and was a son of Lyman and Maranda (Taylor) Rice, both of whom were natives of Massachusetts. He was reared in his native town of Chesterfield, Massachusetts, and attended the high school and also studied two years in Westfield Academy. He served an apprenticeship of three years and learned the carpenter’s trade, and then removed to Boston, where he conducted a restaurant two years. In 1855 he came to Minnesota, and purchased land near Forest Lake, Washington county. After one year he removed to St. Paul and the following year moved to Morrison county and established the first meat market in Little Falls, which he conducted for four years. He .did not enlist in the regular army, but was in the government service as beef contractor to furnish beef to the soldiers at Ft. Ripley. During the Indian outbreak in I863 he was driven out by the Indians from Morrison county and he went to Sherburne county, where he remained for eighteen months until the Indian disturbances were over. He came to Benton county in the spring of 1865 and bought land on section 28 in Langola township and started a stock farm. He also conducted a hotel and bus and stage station, where the village of Rice’s now stands. He conducted the hotel for twelve years. He started a sawmill and feed mill in 1877 and in 1888 started a flour mill. This has a capacity of sixty-five barrels per day. His farm consists of five hundred and eighty-eight acres and of this one hundred and fifty acres is under high cultivation, and the rest is pasture and oak timber. He keeps fifty head of cattle, one hundred head of sheep, and ten horses on his farm and has all machinery for conducting a modern farm. He has erected good buildings, and is surrounded by all the comforts of a rural home. He has been successful in all his business affairs and is one of the substantial men of his township.

Mr. Rice was married October 4, 1855, to Zeruah Bryant, who was born in Massachusetts, July 12, 1831. To Mr. and Mrs. Rice four children have been born, namely: Mary L., George L., Willis A., and Frank W. Mr. Rice served ten years as president of the village council at Rice‘s, and served as township treasurer for twenty years and justice of the peace for twenty-five years. He was county commissioner of Benton county for six years. Politically he is a Republican and he stands firmly for the principles of his party. He is a member of the Congregational church.

Compendium of History and Biography of Central and Northern Minnesota (1904) pp. 644-5

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