Dane G. Hansen was born in 1883 in Logan, a community of about 600 located in Phillips County about 70 miles northwest of Hays. He was a dedicated young man, working with his parents in the mercantile business and then moving on to agriculture. Throughout his life, Hansen worked in the oil business and later got involved in politics. He had a personal interest in promoting education and helping young people succeed.
Dane G. Hansen, son of one of the founders of Logan, Kansas, was born and conducted business on the same city block where the Memorial Plaza stands today.
Mr. Hansen was widely known and respected as a citizen leader, businessman, philanthropist, and Republican. He maintained a deep faith and love for Logan and all of Western Kansas.
Dane G. Hansen was born in Logan on January 6, 1883, of pioneer parents, Peter and Alpha Gray Hansen. Peter Hansen left his native Denmark as a young man, arrived in Logan in 1872 and helped found the town. In 1874 Peter established Logan’s first industry, a sawmill powered by water from the Solomon River. As a member of the Logan School Board, he met and later married Alpha Gray, of British decent, Logan’s fifth school teacher.
Dane G. Hansen started in business in 1905 by working with his parents in a large mercantile store. He later engaged in ranching, cattle breeding and raising mules. Since most earth moving was done by mule teams at that time, he started his own business which evolved into road and bridge construction. The Hansen Construction Company ultimately developed into Logan’s largest single industry by employing nearly 200 men in peak seasons.
With the discovery of oil in 1941, he went into oil development and was among the largest independent operators in Kansas. Opting to work long and hard hours, Mr. Hansen’s work habits were summed up best by his own philosophy that said: “Anything you like becomes a hobby – and if it’s a hobby, it isn’t work.”
When he became old enough to vote, he took an active part in Republican Party Politics. He commented, I’ll take any political job if there’s no pay in it. My services are always free.” His love for this country and great patriotism were widely known and respected, although he never sought nor desired to run for public office.
As a personal friend of former United States President Dwight Eisenhower, Mr. Hansen was a member of the President’s Commission on Intergovernmental Relations in 1954 and 1955 and a vice-president on the Board of Trustees of the Eisenhower Foundation.
Civic-minded, Mr. Hansen was vice-president and director of the Kansas Independent Oil and Gas Association, chairman of the Kansas Contractor’s Association Pension Trust Plan, president of the Kansas Day Club, president and director of the First National Bank of Logan, and fulfilled many other organizational duties.
Always having a heartfelt interest in children and young people, he established the Dane G. Hansen Boy Scout Reservation at Kirwin Lake and provided annual scholarships at the University of Kansas for graduates of Logan High School.
Mr. Hansen was a member of the Methodist Church and all Masonic Bodies, including an honorary 33rd degree membership in Consistory. Dane G. Hansen died on his 82nd birthday, January 6, 1965.