Lincoln County Nebraska | Local History | Charles Kuhns
Charles Kuhns


Early Settler, Businessman and Postmaster in Maxwell

Charles H. Kuhns, born 8 Oct 1868, and died 23 Oct 1935 was an early settler in Maxwell having set up the general store and post office. He was active in the affairs of that region and was the Postmaster for many years, being appointed to Postmaster in 1898. He served in that capacity for thirty-five years. The large home he built still sets at itssite a couple of blocks west of the store in Maxwell.

It was written that “C. H. Kuhns was one of the pioneer and foremost business men of Maxwell, Nebr., the kind that are required to convert a wild piece of prairie into a village and a village into a city. Mr. Kuhns after a residence in Colorado and several years in North Platte, settled in Maxwell. Charles Kuhns went into the general merchandise business in Maxwell in about 1895, in a little log building known as the Hanrahan cabin. His business started with about two wagon loads of merchandise, and his general store became competition for the existing Nugent store. Charles “put his stock of goods in the front room of the cabin, while he and Mrs. Kuhns, and their small son Vernon, occupied the other room at the back.

Towards the end of 1897, Charles sold his original log building to L. E. Story and W. H. Merrick and their business known as W. H. Merrick & Company, and the building was used by Story and Merrick. The larger building that he erected is shown in the accompanying photographs. Charles Kuhns’ business propspered, and he enlarged the building from time to time as was required. Following the move to larger quarters Mr. Kuhns added dry goods, shoes, etc. to his stock, and so began the village's first general store." The new frame building that Charles Kuhn built in 1897 is still standing. In the early 1950’s it was part of the Kittle Brothers store.

In the early 1900’s “Mr. Kuhns has just completed on a modern plan a fine ten room house in the west part of town at an expense of $2,500.00.” At that same time “Mr. Kuhns has served as postmaster at Maxwell with credit to himself and the village for the past three terms. Mr. Kuhns was one of the promoters in the starting and building of the Maxwell and Brady Telephone lines and was general manager of the corporation for three years.”

Charles Kuhns was married June 27, 1891, to Miss Minnie Brown “and while they have built up a good business and home and helped to build up the surrounding country, they have raised a small but fine family, Vernon, Ray and Miss Martha. Master Vernon has taken active charge of the postoffice for some time past in a most efficient and obliging manner, and will attend business college at Lincoln, the coming year."

Vernon KUHNS, son of Charles H. KUHNS, was a longtime, prominent and successful businessman in North Platte. He was in business with Maloney and Cox at the Maloney, Cox, Kuhns Funeral Home.


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