Art was the son of John Martin & Alice Louise (Humphreys) Polhemus. He was born in Phelps County, Nebraska. Married to Laura Alice Fitch in 1914, he was the father of three sons and one daughter. A hardworking farmer and respected horseman, he took over the family farm around 1921 when his parents retired. He worked the farm until dementia made it impossible for him to continue safely. Art died in the Bertrand Nursing Home, where he had lived for about eight years.