Another Homestead Gone: Only the Chimney Remains
Article by Anne Cassens, with help from Helen Miller, the Edgemont Centennial Book, and Down Home Country Folks.
In 1883, (James) Andrew Ball came to Dakota Territory and purchased 160 acres in Fall River County east of Edgemont for $1.25 per acre. He then returned to southern Nebraska and “spent two years getting ready for the move to Dakota”. In June 1885, the family joined a caravan of wagons headed for the Black Hills. In the caravan were the families of George Ball, John Orr, Cyrus Wilson, Guy Orr, and the Schreckenghausts. The Ball and Schreckenghaust families settled in the bend of the Cheyenne River known as Sorghum Flat.
Andy built a log house just north of the Cheyenne River. He and his wife Ida had two daughters when they arrived and in the log home seven more children were added to the family, including Warner. But back to Andy Ball. His story is too long to tell here, but in 1905, he built a new house “down the hill” from the first log home. This is the house that our story is about.
The Andy Ball family lived in the house until 1949 when Warner purchased his father’s place and moved his family there.
Warner and his wife Gladys are the parents of some folks you might know: Richard Ball, Helen Miller and the late Stanley Ball.
Stanley wrote about the summer of 1949, when the family fixed up the home by digging a new basement and pouring cement walls. Then Miles Inman moved the house over the new basement.
In 1958 Stanley moved back to the home place.
In 1963, brothers Stanley and Richard bought the home place, however their parents continued to live in the home until Warner died in 1968, and Gladys moved into Hillcrest Apartments in Edgemont in 1979.
Stanley lived in the home until the mid 1990s when he became disabled. Stanley passed away in 2002.
The house burned on August 16 in the afternoon. The cause was due to an electrical short on a nearby light pole.