This young farmer is an enterprising and successful toiler, whose labors have done much to advance the welfare of the reservation portion of the County and whose standing is first class among his fellows.

Henry J. Gertje was born in Waseca County, Minnesota, on June 13, 1876, being the son of John and Mattie Gertje. The father was born in Germany in 1832. About 1884 the family came to Dakota from Minnesota, where the father took land and farmed for three years. The next move was to Latah County, in the Potlatch country, and there our subject received his education and grew to manhood. On November 1, 1897, Mr. Gertje came to the reservation and took his present place, about two and three-fourths miles east and one south from Melrose. He has a good place, well improved, excellent labor having been done by him since his settlement here.

On January 30, 1900, Mr. Gertje married Miss Estella, daughter of William and Anna (Greer) Parnish. The father was a millman born in Virginia in 1840 and served in Company F, Twenty-fifth Ohio, and was wounded at Gettysburg. The mother was born in Jefferson County, Ohio, in 1847. Mrs. Gertje was born in Tuscarawas County, Ohio, on August 10, 1876, and has two brothers, William and Charles, at Spalding. Mr. Gertje has the following named brothers and sisters: George, John, Herman, Mary Tedie and Edward. One child has been born to Mr. and Mrs. Gertje, Lulu I. Mr. Gertje is a staunch Republican, is always present at the post of duty and is an active worker. He is also strongly in favor of good schools and he and Arthur Cordiner helped to build the school house and hired the children to come to get the school started, and it is interesting to note that Mr. Gertje and Mr. Cordiner were both bachelors at that time.

Mr. Gertje has a good home place and is highly esteemed in the community both for his excellent labors as well as for his intrinsic worth.

Back to: Nez Perce Biographies

Source: An Illustrated History of Northern Idaho, Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone Counties, Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903