Source: Otoe County Pioneers: A Biographical Dictionary by Raymond Dale
"Peter Van Antwerp was born near Montreal, Canada, August 3, 1837, being a son of Samuel and Eliza (Trayer) Van Antwerp. HIs parents were New York people, who after their marriage settled near Montreal. They retruned to New York in 1843. After living two yars near Rochester they moved onto a farm in Erie County, twenty miles east of Buffalo. In 1859 the family moved to Boone County, Illinois, locating near the village of LeRoy. Here Peter Van Antwerp married Mary E. Dodge of LeRoy, July 4, 1861, who was born June 17, 1844. He farmed in Illinois until 1867 and then cam e by team and wagon to Otoe County. He took a homestead of 160 acres, July 19, 1867, in that part of Syracuse Precinct that was afterwards set off as Osage Precinct. There they lived for 38 years. He not only farmed, be fed cattle, sheep and hogs extensively and shippped them to market. As a Republican, Peter Van Antwerp took a prominent part in politics and was elected county commissioner, serving severl years. In the fall of 1892, Peter Van Antwerp bought 36,000 sheep in Colorado wehre he intended to feed them and ship them to market, and he borrowed $40,000.00 to make the purchase. It turned out that the sheep had foot rot and he lost heavely. As a result two quarter sections of his land were sold at sheriff's sale in August 1893 at about half their value, for $4,000.00 each. He had been considered one of the wealthiest farmers in Otoe County. In 1895 he and his wife removed to Colorado where they lived three years. Then they retruned to farm near LeRoy, Illinois. Mr. Van Antwerp died at his home near LeRoy, Illinois, April 10, 1914, at 76 years of age. He was survived by his wife and two children; Frederick S. Van Antwerp, DeRoy, Illinois; and Grace, wife of Thomas A. West, Syracuse, Nebraska. Another son, Charles, died in infancy."
Sources cited following this story include:
U.S. Land Records
Andres, History of Nebraska p. 1243
Syracuse Journal, October 30, 1895, p. 2; May 1, 1914, p. 3
Nebraska City News, April 7, 1893, p. 3; August 6, 1894, p. 2; and May 12, 1914, p. 2