Mr. And Mrs. Will Bassett and Son
Will Bassett is the oldest son of Mr. and Mrs. Ashley Bassett, Tenhassen homesteaders. Will grew up on the farm but figured he wasn't cut out for a soil tiller so when he came of age he left the old homestead, as so many others have done, and moved to town. "Town" was the country village of old Tenhassen. of which nothing now remains but the cemetery and a few hollows in the ground at either side of the road, which were once cellars under houses and business places.
Will was handy with tools so he engaged in the blacksmith trade, his shop standing under a spreading cottonwood tree on the south side of Tenhassen's main, and only, street. So skillful was he that he enjoyed the reputation of being able to fix anything.
When bicycles were invented Will Bassett didn't buy one. He made one in his own shop. And once he built a steam engine for use in his shop, or maybe it was to run a boat on Tuttle Lake. He just picked up a few scraps of iron and steel here and there and forged them together into an engine that would run. There was a connecting link on the throttle or somewhere that he made from a shoe once on the foot of a mule that belonged to Sam Carver, And so with each part. Originally each had a history of its own.
Gasolne engines and automobiles came along and these all interested Mr. Bassett. Evil days befell old Tenhassen because of the new, nearby railroad town of Ceylon. Mr. Bassett turned the key in his village smithy and moved to Fairmont. Here he grew into the auto repair business and could always make them run. A few years ago he ambled off to San Benito. Texas, where he is still monkeying with machinery.
Other figures in the picture are Mr. Bassett's wife and son. Mrs. Bassett is also a Tenhassen pioneer. formerly Katie Personius, daughter of pioneers of 1862. Before her marriage she was a rural school teacher. She is quite as deserving a place in this particular hall of fame as her husband. She knows all about the peculiar problems of being an inventor's wife. The good looking young son is now a man in his own right and was christened Lyle.