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Clinton County >> 1911 Index

History of Clinton County, Iowa
ed. by P. B. Wolfe. 2 vols. Indianapolis, Ind.: B. F. Bowen, 1911.


Unless otherwise noted, biographies submitted by Dick Barton.


Too much cannot be said of the value of savings bank institutions. they serve a double purpose, first, in aiding those who receive money in small amounts to save and accumulate it; second, in collecting these small amounts into sums large enough to be used in modern commercial operations. Thus they render a service to the community at large as well as to the individual depositor. For these reasons their establishment and operation is one of the most useful and practical of business enterprises. Mr. Reihman is largely concerned in the operation of the Peoples' Savings Bank of Grand Mound, and is greatly responsible for its efficiency.

J. W. Reihman was born in Germany, November 15, 1865, son of William and Carolina (Ahler) Reihman, natives of Germany who came to Iowa county, Iowa, in 1870. William Reihman was a contractor and builder, and died at Amana in 1873, where his wife died in 1898. They were the parents of five sons and five daughters, nine of whom are living. They were members of the Amana Society.

J. W. Reihman grew up at Amana, attended the common schools there and Marengo high school. After graduation from high school he began active life as a teacher, then clerked in stores for a while, and later was a clerk in the bank at Preston, Iowa. In January, 1901,he became the cashier of the Peoples' Savings Bank of Grand Mound, and has since held that position. He is one of the principal stockholders in the bank, and is secretary of Group Eight of the Iowa Bankers' Association. He is also president of the Grand Mound Gas Company. In politics he is a Republican, but, though active, has never been an aspirant to office. He is a Mason, member of the consistory at Clinton, Iowa, and a member of Grand Mound Lodge No. 448 of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of which he has been secretary since its organization. He is a member of the Christian church.

Mr. Reihman was married in 1889 to Hattie Whitson, of Jackson county, Iowa, who has borne t him four children, Lenora, Earl, Elsie and Lester.

Mr. Reihman is thoroughly conversant with the savings bank business, and is a careful, conservative business man who has the confidence of the people. He is interested much in the development of the community, and aids all efforts in such directions by all means in his power.


The subject of this review was born in Clinton county, Iowa, two miles south of Elwood, on the 18th of May, 1866, and is a son of Julius H. and Lizette (Metberg) Ruggeberg, natives of Westphalia, Germany. In 1853, Julius H. Ruggeberg and family immigrated to America and spent the ensuing five years in Le Clair, Scott county, Iowa, where for some time he supported himself and those dependent upon him by daily labor, later renting a farm in the vicinity of the town. At the expiration of the period indicated he moved to Clinton county and purchased forty acres of land in Brookfield township where he lived for eight years, when he sold the place and bought a farm of one hundred and sixty acres two miles south of Elwood. From 1858, the year of his arrival in Clinton county, dates his success as a farmer and land owner. He was soon able to add to his real estate and by judicious investments from time to time finally became the owner of eight hundred acres of fine land, all in Clinton county, except one hundred and sixty acres, which he bought in the county of Jackson.

Mr. Ruggeberg was a man of patriotic impulses, a great lover of the Union and while the Civil war was in progress was unremitting in his efforts to induce young men to enlist, besides in various other ways upholding the honor of his adopted country. Previous to his retirement, he rented his lands to his children, and later sold out to them on easy payments, the subject of this sketch purchasing the one hundred and sixty acres in Brookfield township, upon which he now lives. Mrs. Ruggeberg died on the 28th of June, 1899. Since discontinuing active work, Mr. Ruggeberg has been living a retired life at Lost Nation, where, surrounded by his friends, he is spending his closing years in the enjoyment of the results of his many years of successful effort. Of the nine children born to this estimable couple, three survive and are among the highly respected people of their respective communities.

Lewis Ruggeberg was reared to agricultural pursuits and received his education in the district schools of Brookfield township. He early matured his plans for the future and with rare tenacity has carried out the same, being at this time one of the leading farmers of Brookfield township, and as a citizen occupies a large place in the public view. As already stated, he purchased of his father the fine farm on which he now lives and which, under his effective labors and excellent management, has been greatly improved, and is today one of the most valuable places of its area in the county, besides affording the owner a model rural home in which few features are lacking. Mr. Ruggeberg pursues sound practical intelligence, prosecutes his labors according to the most approved modern methods and believes in the honor and dignity of his calling. He has been more than ordinarily successful as a general farmer and raiser of fine breeds of live stock, is a good manager and has so conducted his affairs as to no longer be obliged to apply himself to hard work, being in independent circumstances with an ample competence laid up for the future.

In politics Mr. Ruggeberg is a Republican and an ardent supporter of his party and its candidates. He has been honored by the voters of his township with various positions of trust, including those of assessor, in which he served four years, trustee four years and several terms as clerk of school board, in all of which offices he discharged his duties faithfully and well.

On February 28, 1894, Mr. Ruggeberg was happily married to Rosetta A. Hansell, of Clinton county, Iowa, daughter of David G. and Amanda E. Hansell, who moved to this county in 1868 from Illinois and to the latter state as early as 1840. Mrs. Hansell, whose maiden name was Amanda E. Morris, was descended from one of the Pilgrims who came over in the "Mayflower"; her father was a Scotchman and a veteran of the late Civil war, in which he served with distinction as a member of Company G, One Hundred and Twelfth Illinois Infantry. Mr. and Mrs. Ruggeberg have had four children, namely: Alma Bernice, Marvin R., Wilma and one, the third in order of birth, that died in infancy.