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Carroll County Genealogy

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  This page was created as part of the Carroll Co, IAGenWeb Site, by William L. (Bill) Smith, County Coordinator, and was most recently updated in Jan 2006.

 (On page 91 & 93 of The Breda Centennial Book, Older Days Renewed 1877-1977)

John Bernard Knobbe, born near Hanover, Germany in 1811, and his wife, the former Adelade Waters, immigrated to America in 1855 with their six children: Bernard Henry, Clemens John, Richard Henry, Angela Mary, Herman and John R. The (sic) settled near Galena, Illinois. In 1870 they moved to Carroll County, what was then known as Sheridan Township, (now Kniest), and took up a homestead three quarters of a mile east of Breda, now the home of the Dean Tiefenthaler family. John and a number of his sons were among the early constructors of the railroad in the territory. He died in 1894 and is buried at Breda.

Clemens John, son of John Bernard Knobbe, was an early businessman in Breda operating a grain dealership. He also owned and managed a saloon in the area that the present Post Office now occupies. The family residence was to the rear of this establishment. Some years later he farmed in the Willey area and upon retiring moved back to Breda.

Clemens John was married twice; his first wife was Mary Kuhl. Frank and Anna Knobbe (Wessling) were children of this union. His wife Mary died in 1877 and was buried at Mt. Carmel. In 1879 Clemens John was married to Mary Wempe Klein. Children of this marriage include: Clem, Francis (Leuke), Henry, Joseph, Mary (Leuke), John, Tony, and step -children Ben Klein, and Anna Klein (Pittman). Clemens John died in 1919; his wife Mary died in 1934, and are buried at Breda.

Grandchildren of Clemens John still living in the Breda area are: Felicitas Knobbe (Polking), Carole Knobbe (Snyder), Mark, Mello and Robert Knobbe. The late Father Clemens Knobbe, a native priest was also a grandson.

Transcription (October 2001) by
Anita Henning
Lemon Grove, CA  


Gerhard Lammers (1885-1935) was born at Haqelgreen,* Wisconsin. At the age of twelve he came to a farm east of Breda with his parents. As a young man he worked as a farmhand and then operated a dray business in Breda. He also owned and operated a saloon and later a pool hall in the building now known as the Corner Casino. Mr Lammers was a director of the Breda Savings Bank for nearly thirty years, from 1906 until his death.

His wife was Josephine Schroeder and they were the parents of ten children, nine sons and one daughter, two of whom died in infancy. Three sons, Joe, Henry, and Gerhard are deceased. Surviving children are: Mrs Mayme Heiman, Tony, Albert, William and Herman.

*Likely this is Hazel Green, in Grant County, WI. 

Transcription (June 2001) by
.. Anita Henning ..Lemon Grove, CA

BELOW:  REACTION from a descendant
Note from Thomas Lammers, December 2001:

I just got a computer and looked up Gerhard. I am his grandson, now living in Marion Iowa. I have seen a few errors and omissions in the information given on your web site. Gerhard's  grandfather (also named Gerhard) was born in Germany April 20, 1821. My grandfather was born in Hazel Green Wis. Oct. 19, 1855. He moved to Carroll County 1867. Married Josephine Schroeder May 5, 1891. They had nine boys and a girl as follows. Clemens, born 6-21-1892, John, born 10-17-1894, Mary (Mame) born 3-29-1896, Henry (Hiene) born 10-24-198, Joseph, born 5-11-1901, Anthony (Tony) Born 9-14-1902, Gerhard (Toots) born 8-14-1904, Albert (Gilliy) born 8-5-1908, William, born 10-14-1910 and Herman, born 7-3-1913. All these have passed away except Herman who is living in West Union Iowa.

This is probably more information than you need or want. I have much more if you want it. Just contact me at

I (Bill Smith) asked his permission to record the above, here was the reply I got:

Dr. Smith, I would be pleased to have you add the information I have sent you to the web site. You have my permmision as well as my brothers. I will be glad to send you more of you want or need it. My grandfather was one six childern born to Gerhard Lammers and Anna Mary (Wibben) Lammers. These are my Great Grand parents, both were born in German and both are buried in Breda, Iowa. Just let me know if I can be of any more help to you. TOM 


 (On page 81of The Breda Centennial Book, Older Days Renewed 1877-1977)

Joachim (James) Ludwig (1846-1922) was one of the first five settlers of Kniest Township. Joachim was born in Beckereide, Germany and came to America with his parents at the age of sixteen. They settled at Dubuque and resided there for six years.

In 1860 he came to Kniest Township with four other men and homesteaded on the farm now owned by his grandson, Clarence Ludwig. He lived on this same farm for fifty-three years.

On February 2, 1873 Mr Ludwig married Barbara Legler in Wisconsin, and ten children were born to this union. Seven passed away at a young age. Those remaining were Mike, Albert, and Mrs Ted Snyder. His first wife died May 4, 1892, and in the fall of that year he married Mrs Henrietta Feldman.

  (4)  OCKEN

(From page 107 of  The Breda Centennial Book, Older Days Renewed 1877-1977)

John Ocken was born in Sittinghausen, Germany on April 5, 1849. On October 29, 1875 he was united in marriage to Elizabeth Schaefer, and to this union eight children were born, one of whom died in infancy. The other children were: Mary (Mrs Henry Puttman), John A., Teresa (Mrs Herman Woerdehoff), Elizabeth (Mrs George Wess), Joe, Anna (Mrs John Wolterman), and Henry.

In 1882 John Ocken and his family crossed the ocean and settled on a farm in Carroll County. Later they moved to Breda and he worked for many years on the section for the railroad, being division boss for the last fifteen years. In his later years he was town marshal for a few years and also operated a cream buying station. He died on July 27, 1915.
Anita Henning .. Lemon Grove, CA


 (On page 93 and 95 of The Breda Centennial Book, Older Days Renewed 1877-1977)

Joseph Olerich was born Jan 7, 1859 at Galena, Illinois. He came to Carroll County as a young man and settled on a farm east of Breda were he resided a number of years. Later he was identified with hardware, implement and furniture businesses in Breda for many years. He erected a number of the large business buildings in Breda, and was a director of the bank. In 1911, J.W. Zurmahr and H.J.Bruning joined him as partners. Mr Olerich retired from active business about 1926.

He and Matilda Zurmahr were married Jan 14, 1893. They were the parents of six cildren: Alva, (Wand), Herman J., Victor, Frank, Carl and Arthur. Mr Olerich died Dec 30, 1936.

Transcription (Oct 2002) by .. Anita Henning .. Lemon Grove, CA

(6)  RICKE 

From the Breda Centennial Book, 1877-1977, Older Days Renewed, pages 150-151.

Transcription (June 2001) by .. Anita Henning .. Lemon Grove, CA

The commercial, financial and political interests of Breda, Carroll County, Iowa, have all felt the stimulus of the sound judgment and business sagacity of J.H. Ricke, who for many years had been one of the prominent and foremost businessmen of this community. His birth occurred in Hanover, Germany on the 22nd of June, 1854 and he came to America with his family in 1860.

In 1871, he came to Iowa, locating in Carroll County, and the succeeding six years were passed in agricultural pursuits in Kniest Township. In 1877, he went to California, and until 1882 was employed in the capacity of street car conductor in San Francisco. In the latter year he returned to Jo Daviess County, Illinois, and there, in 1885, was married, after which he again came to Carroll County, Iowa. Taking up his abode in Breda, he here became identified with the grain business and subsequently purchased the hardware

 business of H Olerich, forming a partnership with his brother-in-law, H.F. Soat. Under the firm style of Ricke & Soat they conducted a hardware, furniture and undertaking establishment; this relation existing until 1894, when they sold their business and Mr Ricke became associated with Joseph Olerich with whom he continued until 1897. In that year their establishment was burned out, after which Mr Ricke operated a grain elevator for the Northern Grain Company at Breda for one year. He was then appointed postmaster of that town in 1898, at which time he established a general merchandising business in connection with H.D. Bruning, being thus identified until October 3, 1907. He served as assistant postmaster and postmaster of Breda for eighteen years, and later sold one-half of his interest in the mercantile business to William Ricke, the present postmaster. The year 1906 witnessed his initiation into financial circles, assisting in the organization, in January of that year, of the Breda Savings Bank, of which he was elected first vice president, and in this office remained until chosen to the presidency.

Mr Ricke was married, in 1885, to Miss Mary Ann Soat, and unto this union a son, Arthur J. was born August, 1894.



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