Politician in Lincoln County
Virgil D. Lewis was born on 19 Oct 1898 at Gallitin, Missouri. He came to Nebraska with his parents in 1905, first settling at Gothenburg; and, then, in about 1919, moving to a ranch south of Maxwell at Brady Island. He worked the ranch with his father, Jasper Newton Lewis, trading in horses and mules.
In 1919, he married Martha Irena Kuhns, daughter of Charles and Minnie Kuhns of Maxwell. They had four children: Martha Virgene, Beverly Ann, Dell K. and Virgil D., Jr.
Virgil worked at selling cars for Hendy - Ogier Auto Company, a Mercantile Company, and at the North Platte Airport loading U.S. Mail.
In 1930 Mr. Lewis traveled to the MAayo Clinic where a tumor of the brain was removed. At the time, it was listed as the largest tumor removed from a brain where the patient survived - the tumor was the size of a tennis ball.
He made his first bid in the politics of Lincoln County in 1934 when he ran for, and won the seat of County Clerk/Assessor. At that post he successfully served three - four year terms.
He resigned the office in 1948 and went to McCook for a brief period where he and Martha opened a cafe. They returned to North Platte in 1950 and Virgil politicked for the position of Registrar of Deeds. He won that post, and served as Registrar of Deeds from 1950 to 1952, when, for health reasons, he was forced to resign.
Virgil lived quietly in North Platte until his death in 1955.
During his political career in Lincoln County, Virgil was known as a man for the people. He constantly fought to keep taxes low and reasonable. His honesty was such that he lived a modest life and did not grow rich at the expense of the people. His motto was: "Be friendly with all, intimate with few; and, let those few be well chosen!"
At a time when North Platte carried the nickname "Little Chicago" he remained true to his political agenda and faithful to the citizens of Lincoln County. All of his success, by the way, was completed with a formal education that did not extend beyond the 10th grade.