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 • Owatonna
 • Steele County
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Hector Maxwell Hastings
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Birth: Apr. 12, 1835
Horseheads
Chemung County
New York, USA
Death: May 3, 1899
Owatonna
Steele County
Minnesota, USA

History of Rice & Steele Counties Minnesota by Franklyn Curtis-Wedge

Hon. Hector M. Hastings was one of the prominent millersof Minnesota and was universally esteemed both for his qualities as a man and his ability as a promoter. He was born in the little town of Horseheads, Chemung county. New York, in 1835.
There he was reared to sturdy boyhood, receiving such advantages as the district schools of the neighborhood aflforded. During this period surrounded by the love of a devoted mother and
the care of a just father he laid the foundation of that staunch character which was to individualize his after-life. At the age
of twelve years, in 1847, he was taken by his parents to Illinois. While there, he was married in 1854 to Mary A. Roberts who proved a loving and faithful companion throughout his life. Two
years later the young couple decided to try their fortunes in what was then the new Northwest and accordingly settled near Elysian, in LeSueur county. There they were residing during the
great Sioux outbreak of 1862. Mr. Hastings' conduct during that trying period illustrated the indomitable and vigorous character of the man. First bringing his family to Owatonna for safety he then proceeded to buy all the powder in the community, amounting probably to one keg. With this he set out in a sulky to join Colonel Brackett's force, which was then proceeding against the Indians. Alone he traveled through the
country and finally joined the command somewhere near the present site of St. Peter. He took part in the battle of Fort Ridgely from which he escaped unharmed. Later he witnessed the hanging of the thirty-eight Sioux ringleaders at Mankato.
With this experience he sought to enlist in the Civil War, but was refused on account of a slight physical disability. In 1863 Mr. Hastings moved to Steele county and settled in Lemond township where, in time, he acquired over two thousand acres of land. In 1885 he formed a partnership with O. E. Edson and W. H. Willsey to go into the milling business under the firm name of H. M. Hastings & Company, purchasing the Reidell
mill. Shortly afterward Mr.Reidell's interest was purchased by the Hon. J. M. Diment. The mill was destroyed by fire in 1891, but such a disaster, great as it was, the property being uninsured, did not discourage such energetic and forceful business men as Mr. Hastings and his partner. They took Lynard Virtue into partnership and the firm became Hastings, Diment & Company. This concern purchased the old Beynon & Maes mill
building, which they remodeled, refitted and enlarged. The business prospered and the fame of the mill grew imtil the name of the Hastings flour became known throughout this country
and abroad, considerable quantities being shipped to England. The firm underwent some changes in 1897 when Mr. Hastings bought out his partners and changed the firm name to The Hastings Milling Company. But shortly afterward Mr. Virtue
again bought an interest. Operated for a time by the estate after Mr. Hastings' death and eventually was sold to L. G. Campbell Milling Company. Mr. Hastings was a man of strong individuality. Trained amid the hardships and exigencies of early frontier life, he acquired a decision of manner and speech sometimes seemingly
blunt, yet, on acquaintance proving a valued quality as men of plain and fearless speech are rare. He left no doubt in the mind of the hearer as to where he stood on any question and his energetic decision in business matters soon caused him to tower above most of his fellows as a successful man. He had many excellent qualities of mind and heart of which his liberality
to the poor and the unfortunate deserves special notice. A staunch Democrat in politics, he was a delegate to nearly every Democratic state convention, and in 1879 he served with distinc-
tion in the legislature. Aside from his milling interests he was president of the Central Dakota Telephone Comjjan}-. Mr. Hastings died May 7. 1899. He was survived by three children,
George W. Hastings, Mrs. Ida Slaid and Mrs. G. F. Cardofif.
 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  Samuel M Hastings (1804 - 1885)
  Abigail R Gannon Hastings (1808 - 1881)
 
 Spouse:
  Mary Adelia Roberts Hastings (1837 - 1903)
 
 Children:
  George Wyatt Hastings (1855 - 1927)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Forest Hill Cemetery
Owatonna
Steele County
Minnesota, USA
Plot: Section: 11 129 C
 
Created by: d8wf8inVB
Record added: Apr 05, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 88116683
Hector Maxwell Hastings
Added by: LBlodgett
 
Hector Maxwell Hastings
Added by: LBlodgett
 
Hector Maxwell Hastings
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Sandra Ballenthin Van Erp
 
 
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.


- Tom Mauer
 Added: Dec. 10, 2016
 
 
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