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1899 BIOGRAPHIES  A - G
From Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language Newspaper
Published between about 1874 and 1920
These bios are from a special 25th Anniversary Edition of  September 20, 1899


Translated & Contributed by David Reineke

This is an ongoing project.  Please use the Free Find Search Engine, which will be updated as names are added.
 


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:


Bernard H. Ahrling


This man, of whom the Anniversary Edition presents a fine picture, was born on 17 July 1846 in Steinfeld, County of Bechta, Grand Duchy of Oldenburg, Germany.  He attended the schools in his hometown.  After successfully completing school, he became a farmer and later managed the property of his father, who for 44 years had traveled the world’s oceans as a sailor in merchant ships, and in his travels had several times visited the East Indies and Australia.  As a 20-year-old young man, Bernard H. also became a sailor, and from 1865 to 1868 he saw many European, North and South American, and Cuban harbor cities.  He can still vividly picture the harbor of Santiago, where [in the Spanish-American War] the hero Hobson sank the coal ship Merimac [Merrimac].  On 15 July 1868, the immigrant family Ahrling arrived in Baltimore.  They settled near Petersburg, Iowa, where they lived for three years.  In 1871, Bernard H. purchased 80 acres in Wheatland Township [Carroll County] . 

In the years 1872 to 1874, he purchased an additional 40 acres of bordering land.  Today he still lives with his family on this farm, which is equipped with fine buildings and other equipment, and which also has a good livestock herd.  Over time, he purchased another 240 acres of neighboring land, which is also well equipped with buildings, etc.  On 16 January 1875, he married Miss Louise Werning, and the marriage was blessed with four children.  One child, however, died at a tender age.  The children still living are: Agnes, Gertrude, and Franziska.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:


Louis T. Anderson


One of the oldest businesses in Carroll, which has distinguished itself through a very large inventory of goods, through good and quality work, and through moderate prices and friendly service, is the saddlery shop of Mr. Louis T. Anderson on Fifth Street.  He opened his saddlery business about 20 years ago.  As usual in those days, it was a small business, but he had a good knowledge of his profession.  And today in his trade, he has the largest business in Carroll, and it is known beyond the borders of the county.  The expansive and large business building is filled with merchandise from top to bottom, and represents a value over $10,000, among which are found the usual as well as the most elegant horse harnesses, saddles for men and women, and all sorts of items used for carriages, driving, and riding.  Handbags and trunks in all sizes, as well as the finest sewing machines, and so forth, can be found there.  Mr. Anderson believes in the idea that honesty and reliability are the main requirements for a good business, and he has built his business on this principle, so that he now enjoys such a large number of customers.  Since he finds himself in such agreeable circumstances, he is able to make large purchases, which he settles in cash payment, and so obtains advantages which he passes on to his customers.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. I have not changed the place or name spellings, but I have added some notes at the end, and also attached a scanned copy below. It reads as follows:
 

Mathias Banscher
 

Mr. Banscher, who appears below in a picture, was born in Untergrombach, Baden, on 10 December 1856. He attended elementary school in his hometown and received First Holy Communion in the local parish church. In 1872, his parents and their children immigrated to the United States of North America. They settled first in Geneseo, Henry County, Illinois, where the father purchased a farm. The son, Mathias, worked with his father on the farm until the latter passed away in 1882.

On 4 July 1882, Mr. Mathias Banscher married Miss Franziska Freund, a virtuous young woman who was born in Davenport, Iowa on 22 March 1858. After the young couple lived one more year in Henry County, they moved to Davenport, Iowa, onto the farm of the young bride’s parents. Later, Mr. Banscher and his wife moved to Roselle Township, Carroll County, where the couple purchased a 160-acre farm three-fourths of a mile south of the little town of Roselle. On 1 January 1890, Mr. Banscher’s dear mother also died. Mr. Banscher is an industrious and capable farmer, and as soon as he took over his farm he sought to increase the value of his property through new construction. In 1887, he built a large and good barn, and in 1893 a beautiful and stately residence where he and his wife and children live, respected and highly regarded by all their acquaintances. The couple did not remain immune from fate, for in the fall of 1898 they lost their good little daughter Maria, a promising child and the joy of her parents. From this extremely happy and Christian marriage have come six children, including the deceased Maria, and their names are Katharina, Rosalia, Peter, Margaretha and Anna.

NOTES: Baden is a region in southwest Germany. Untergrombach is a small town about 10 miles northeast of Karlsruhe, near the French border.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Henry Bartel
 

This man was born on 1 November 1846 in Kirchberg, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, where he also received his schooling. Afterwards, he worked in farming, and he came to America in 1872. He settled first in Chicago, and then went to Wisconsin, where he worked on the railroad 40 miles from La Crosse. He also worked for farmers near La Crosse. From there, he moved to Dubuque, Iowa. He then worked for three years in Wisconsin, where he was employed cutting trees. In 1875, he came to Carroll County, where he worked as a farmhand until 1884, when he married Miss Wilhelmina Ziegenfus and went into farming for himself. In 1889, he moved to his own 120-acre farm in Kniest Township, which he operated successfully. Henry is a progressive farmer, and he has good equipment and a fine livestock herd on his property. This happy marriage has produced six children, five of whom are still living: Henry, Lene, Johny [sic], Annie, and Peter.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Nickolaus Beiter
 

Among all German-Americans, Mr. Beiter, the owner of the oldest butcher shop in Carroll, enjoys a great popularity, and he is equally respected by all the other residents. He was, therefore, honored on various occasions and has held many offices. He has been a member of the school board since 1881, which he led for three years as president. He was also was an honorable and active member of the town council for several terms. In German-American societies, he was president of all the clubs except only one.

Mr. Beiter was born on 21 March 1847 in Strassberg, Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. He attended school there and learned the trade of butcher. After completing a period of apprenticeship, he strapped on his knapsack and traveled through the states of Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Baden, Switzerland,and Austria, and everywhere found employment in his occupation. Later, he visited the cities of Paris and Havre in France. Having received rich experience in his occupation, he came to the United States of North America in July 1866. He first made his way to Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, and in 1869 to Chicago, Illinois. In 1870, he went to Elgin and from there to Aurora, Illinois. In the fall of the same year, he made his way to Iowa, where he settled in Clarence, Cedar County, and he remained until the fall of 1874. He then came to Carroll and opened his butcher shop in a small frame building, where the business of Mr. Mark and Co. is now located. But for many years he has been the owner of a solid business building on Fifth Street, where he conducts a considerable butcher shop business with good success and employs four assistant butchers. In 1890, he bought 240 acres of land in Sheridan Township, and he also owns a 40-acre parcel in Grant Township where he has his cattle yard and slaughterhouse. A few years ago, he built a fine residence on Main Street, which is equipped with steam heat.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Berger & Jülich [Juelich]
 

Mr. M. Berger was born in Blackhawk County on 22 April 1867, and in 1870, he moved with his parents to Kniest Township, Carroll County, where he assisted his father in running their large farm. In 1880, the family again moved back to Blackhawk County, and after six years they returned to Kniest Township. On 29 November 1893, he married Miss Herberta Jülich, and their marriage produced three children. He worked on the farm until 1899, and in February of this year, he took over the above-named business with Mr. Jülich.

Mr. Heinrich Jülich was born on 1 August 1872 in Clinton County, Iowa. In February 1877, his parents moved to Carroll Township [now Maple River Township], Carroll County, where little Heinrich received his education. After he finished school, he worked on his parents’ farm until 1899, when he and his brother-in-law took over the business in Mt. Carmel. Later, these men were given the appointment of local postmaster.

The business consists of groceries, dry goods, hardware, crockery, footwear, and all sorts of goods which are only to be found in good, large businesses. The prices which the men quoted are in accord with the better businesses of large cities, and since the men are very friendly and courteous, they have earned the support of all the residents of Kniest Township and Mt. Carmel.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Jakob Berger
 

This man, whose interesting life story follows, has been connected with the history of Carroll County for 30 years now, and he stands in high regard among all the citizens of this county. Mr. Jakob Berger was born on 20 August 1831 in Herxheim, Rhineland Palitinate, Bavaria. After he finished school, he devoted himself mainly to agriculture. But an enterprising spirit dwelt within him, and during his free time in the winter he found employment with a transport wagon, whereby he traveled to Baden and France. For a long time already, he had made the decision to try his luck in the new country on the other side of the ocean, and he carried out this decision in 1853. Arriving here in this country, he went first to Pennsylvania, where he worked for a time. Then he moved to Stevenson County, Illinois, and in 1856 we find him on the way to Waterloo, Iowa, where the industrious and enterprising man acquired 100 acres of land. Mr. Berger had already reached his adult years, and since he had known a respectable young lady for some time, he came to a decision. Miss Elisabeth Blim was the chosen young lady, and the marriage took place on 22 May 1862. The young couple worked on the farm another four years, and then Mr. Berger established a general merchandise store in Waterloo. He sold the business in Waterloo in 1870, and then made his way to Carroll County, where he bought a fine piece of land of 200 acres. For nine years we see the hard-working man operating his expansive farm, but then he got the longing to return to his dear Waterloo. So he rented out his farm, which he had equipped with fine buildings, and moved with his wife and children back to Waterloo, where he again opened a similar business. But it turned out that the farm in Kniest Township required his own attention, and there was a good opportunity to sell, so he sold his business and moved with his family to the farm in Kniest Township. Eleven years later, in January 1896, he and his wife retired and moved to the town of Carroll, where he bought a beautiful home right in the vicinity of Saints Peter and Paul Church. This happy marriage produced 12 children, three of whom died at a tender age. The names of the children still living are: Martin, married to Miss Maria Juelich; Theresia, married to Mr. Louis Koelker; Katharina, married to Mr. Peter Ortner; Frank, married to Miss Maria Nurre; Maria, married to School Superintendent Mr. Frank van Erdewick; Elisabeth, married to Mr. Peter Thelen; Jakob; Anna; and Agnes.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Peter Berger
 

There is hardly a person to be found in this district who enjoys a greater popularity than Peter Berger. There is therefore almost no one in this county who has been so honored, not only in elections and responsible offices, but also in kind support from the citizens in all of his undertakings.

He was born on 16 October 1844 in Herxheim, Rheinland-Pfalz, Bavaria. His parents moved to America when he was eight years old, and after living in Pennsylvania for two years, they moved to Stevenson County, Illinois and then to Blackhawk County, Iowa. After he had completed his elementary education, he devoted himself to agriculture and assisted his father on the farm. On 26 December 1867, Mr. Berger married Miss Katharina Beierschmitt, and soon thereafter (1868), the young couple sold a 100-acre farm in Blackhawk County, which Mr. Berger had acquired earlier. In January of the following year, they purchased a 200-acre property in Kniest Township, Carroll County, and in the spring of that year, Mr. Berger came out to break the virgin prairie and build a house. In the spring of 1870, he came with his family from Blackhawk County to establish a home on his farm in Kniest Township, and the Berger family has lived in Carroll County ever since.

Five years later, in 1875, he had the satisfaction of being elected as a county supervisor for Carroll County, and he served so satisfactorily that he was honored with a second term and served the county six years in this capacity. In 1881, he increased his real estate by 80 acres, but two years later he sold his entire property to Philip Heimann, and shortly thereafter, he purchased another 160 acres in the same township. In September 1883, Mr. Berger and his family moved to the town of Carroll where he bought a beautiful home. That fall, he competed for the office of County Treasurer but was defeated with a slight minority. However, when the elected Treasurer absconded the following year, he had the honor of being appointed as Treasurer by the Board of Supervisors until the next election. In all, he was entrusted with the office four times, once through the above-offered appointment, and three times through public election, in each of which he was elected by strong majorities.

In 1884, Mr. Berger purchased a business building on Fourth Street, which he expanded with a two-story addition to Fifth Street. In 1891, he sold the house he was living in and then built a fine residence across from the German Catholic Church. In the same year, Mr. Berger associated with Mr. Russell and formed a business which is favorably known throughout the county, and which primarily operates in real estate loans and insurance. In January 1898, he became a member of the German Bank of Carroll County and was elected to its finance committee.

Getting back to his respected family, this happy marriage was blessed with 12 children, however, five of them died in childhood. The names of those still living are: Maria, married to Mr. Geo. Schmich; Elisabeth, married to Jos. Wiedemeier; Frank, married to Miss Emelie Trebon; Theresia, married to Mr. Charles Schmich; and Helena, Veronika, and Wilhelm, who still live with their parents


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Philip Bernholz
 

Mr. Philip Bernholz may also be counted among the earliest residents of Carroll County, since he has lived in this county since 1870. He has always taken a prominent place among the German-Americans: for many years he was a township trustee, and he is esteemed and respected by his acquaintances.

Mr. Philip Bernholz was born on 2 September 1829 in Bonenburg, Westphalia, Germany. After successfully completing school, he assisted his father in farming. He then went to Horsbeck near Hagen, where he found employment for a time in operating a transport wagon. In 1851, he immigrated to America and settled in Freeport, Illinois. Five years later, in May 1856, he married Theresia Kasecker. Mr. Bernholz lived in Freeport for 18 years, and then he moved to Stands County, Minnesota, where he remained for two years. On 12 May 1870, he came to Carroll Township [now Maple River Township], Carroll County, Iowa. After two years, Mr. Bernholz moved onto Lambert Kniest’s farm in Kniest Township. After he managed it for two years, he purchased Henry Niemann’s farm, where he and his wife still live today. This happy marriage has produced five children, four sons and a daughter.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:

George Bierl

In another place, the friendly reader will find an accurate picture of Mr. George Bierl and his good wife. This gentleman is a prominent farmer, well known in the entire county, who enjoys an excellent reputation. Mr. Bierl was born in Schwarzenberg, Bavaria, on 3 June 1844, where he grew from a child to a boy, from a boy to a young man, and from a young man to a man. Thus, here is the place he spent the years of childhood play, attended school, and, after completing school, turned to agriculture, at which he was later very successful. He worked on various farms until he was called to military service. He entered the 11th Infantry Regiment was just at the time of the armistice, and then peace was declared following the campaign of 1866. He served two years active duty.

As he had been acquainted with a respectable young woman for some time, he decided to marry. The wedding took place on 24 July 1868, and the chosen one was the virtuous Miss Franziska Rödel.

In 1870, when the war with France broke out, he again answered the call of his king and took part in the campaign. He participated in the Battle of Orleans and several other engagements, and was discharged on 25 February 1871.

Soon thereafter came the notion of emigrating to the Free States of North America. The plan, after careful consideration, came to fulfillment, and so in 1875, he crossed the ocean with his family to try his luck in this progressive country. He settled first in Gutenberg, Iowa, and after he and his family had lived there one year, they moved to Eden Township, Carroll County, Iowa, where Mr. Bierl bought 80 acres of land. He worked with great success, and now and then increased his real estate, so that today it amounts to 460 acres. The farm is well equipped, has good stables, barns, grain bins, and a fine, comfortable house. The land is also first rate, so that the extensive farm may be counted among the finest properties in Eden Township.

Mr. Bierl and his wife and children are well liked everywhere, and enjoy a good reputation. This happy marriage has produced six children whose names are: Johann, Joseph, Franziska, Anton, George, and Maria.

NOTES: George Bierl was born “Georg” Bierl, and was sometimes called George Bierl, Sr. The town of Schwarzenberg, Bavaria is located in southeast Germany, northeast of Regensburg, and very close to the Czech Republic border. The war referred to in the article is the Franco-Prussian War. I have seen his wife’s maiden name spelled various ways, including, Rail, Roedel, Rohrl, Roehrl. This article spelled it Rödel, with two dots above the “o.” The two dots (called an Umlaut) above the “o” can also be spelled by adding an “e” after the “o” when writing in English. George and Franziska Bierl are buried in Templeton, Iowa.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Henry Block
 

Mr. Henry Block, who has lived in Carroll for five years and has been married to widow Fleskes during this time, is among the most popular German-Americans and, because of his integrity and honesty he is esteemed and respected by all his acquaintances.  He was born in Germany in May 1826.  When he was just a boy of 9 years, he was already forced to make a living on his own.  He learned the trade of miller, and carried on in this occupation until he married Miss Anna Maria Bolte in May 1850.  After living another two years in his hometown, he and his young wife immigrated to the United States of North America and settled in Fort Madison, Iowa.  The Block family lived in this town for 25 years and was engaged in various occupations.  In 1877, the family moved to Shelby County, where Mr. Block acquired 240 acres of the finest real estate, which he worked with his children.  In March 1891, he received a heavy blow when his dear wife was torn from his side by death.  Shortly thereafter, Mr. Block sold his land and moved to Carroll, where he married the widow Fleskes on 9 January 1894.  This happy marriage produced a son, which at baptism received the name August Joseph.  He and one adopted daughter, Katharina, along with the parents, comprise the entire family.  A few months ago, Mr. Block purchased a pretty farm a few miles from Carroll, which, however, he rented out.  He lives in the southwest part [perhaps meaning the southwest ward of Carroll], where he owns a fine property of several acres, which he works himself.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Sebastian Bruch
 

Mr. Sebastian Bruch and his family are also among the earliest residents of Kniest Township. A copperplate of Mr. Bruch and his revered spouse, the original of which was taken on the silver anniversary of their wedding, appears in another location [in this paper]. He is one of the largest landowners in Kniest Township, and due to his open and honest character he enjoys the respect of all his fellow-citizens. Mr. Bruch was born on 11 October 1847 in Shelby, Richland County, Ohio. Soon thereafter, in the fall of 1853, his parents moved to New Vienna, Dubuque County, Iowa, where little Sebastian received his schooling and received First Holy Communion. He then took up the plow and assisted his father in operating the parental farm. In the spring of 1870, the entire family moved to Kniest Township, Carroll County, where our Sebastian assisted his father in operating the farm for another two years. On 22 May 1872, Mr. Sebastian Bruch married Miss Maria Bernholz, and there after moved to his own farm, a property of 426 acres, where he still lives today with his family. On 19 June 1886, his elderly parents celebrated the 50th anniversary of their marriage, but on 15 October of the following year, the elderly man passed away, entrusting his dear life’s companion, who had already reached the age of 88, to the care of his son. On 3 June 1897, Mr. Bruch and his revered wife celebrated their own silver anniversary, in which a large group of relatives and friends participated. During the long years that Mr. Bruch has lived in Kniest Township, he has been honored to serve in various offices, and still today he is the Treasurer of the Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Company. This very happy marriage has been blessed with nine children, seven daughters and two sons, who are all still living. The children’s names are: Louise; Clara, a successful teacher; Agnes; Joseph; Francis; Maria; Rose; Laura; and Albert.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Clemens Brüning [Bruening]
 

The bearer of this name is among the oldest pioneers in Carroll County. He was born on 14 February 1830 in Lengerich, Hanover, Germany. After successfully completing school, he learned the cabinet-maker's trade, and after his mother died in 1848 he immigrated to America with his father and two sisters. The family settled near Hazel Green, Wisconsin. Mr. Clemens Brüning made his way to Joe Davis County [perhaps Jo Daviess County, Illinois] and worked there at his trade. He was also employed in the lead ore mines in Galena. Returning again to Wisconsin, he married the respected Miss Maria A. Arts. He then devoted himself to farming for 12 years. In 1865 he traveled to Idaho, California, and Oregon, and he returned back home the next year, bringing with him a considerable number of diamonds. In 1869 he and Mr. Arts each purchased a section of land in Wheatland township [Carroll County, Iowa], which he brought under cultivation the next year. In 1875 he moved to Arcadia and opened a general merchandise store. He sold it in 1879, and he and his sons became businessmen in the new town of Breda, where they still conduct a business dealing in commercial goods, hardware, furniture, lumber, machinery, produce, cattle, and coal. In 1893, he sold the farm and invested his money in town property. In 1894 he built a large brick business building. His dear wife died on 21 October 1895. In the two fire disasters of 7 September 1897 and 6 April 1898, the Brüning family suffered heavy losses.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Joseph Busche
 

This man has lived in Kniest Township since 1883 and is a successful farmer. He was born in Lüsche [Luesche], District of Bechta, Oldenburg, Germany. After he finished school, he worked on various farms until he was 19 years old. He then immigrated to the United States of North America, where initially he worked three years in Cincinnati. In 1883, Mr. Busche turned to the West in order to seek his fortune. He came to Kniest Township, Carroll County, Iowa, where he worked on a farm for two years. On 24 November 1885, he married the respected widow Elisabeth Naberhaus, who owned a beautiful and valuable 160-acre farm in Kniest Township. The couple then enlarged their property by about 80 acres, so that the farm now consists of 240 acres of the finest land and is equipped with good and solid stalls. The children from the first marriage are: Katharina, Bernhard, Maria, Joseph, Elisabeth, Anna, and Heinrich. The happy marriage with Mr. Busche produced four children, one of whom died at a young age. Those still living are: Johann, George, and Franz. Mr. Busche, his wife, and children are popular and esteemed everywhere, and they enjoy the respect of their fellow-citizens.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Fred. Caspary
 

The bearer of this name is among the best-known and most respected German-Americans of Carroll County, and he runs a large and successful business in grain, coal, and lumber in Maple River Junction, the next town west of Carroll. 

Mr. Caspary was born on 18 October 1856 in Altenahr, County of Ahrweiler, Germany.  He first attended elementary school in his hometown, and then he attended the gymnasium [advanced high school] in Muenstereifel, District of Cologne.  In 1875, he entered the Prussian Army as a one-year volunteer, and after he honorably completed his service, Mr. Caspary remained with his parents until 1879, assisting his father in a wine business.  He then made a visit to the United States of North America, and the Caspary family crossed the ocean in the following year.  Mr. Fred. Caspary’s parents settled a mile west of Maple River Junction where they acquired a fine farm and have been engaged in farming since then.   On 29 September 1885, Mr. F. Caspary married Miss Josephine Simons, and in the following year he founded the above-mentioned business in Maple River Junction.  For the last year and a half, he has been a stockholder in the German Bank of Carroll County.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Jakob Daczewitz
 

The bearer of this name was born on 7 August 1846 in Pirklitz, County of Stuh, District of Marienwerder, Germany.  After he finished school, he learned the trade of wagonmaker, and he then laced up his knapsack and traveled through Poland, Russia, and Germany.  In 1870, he was called into the military, and during his service he worked with a mechanic company in an artillery workshop.  When the war with France [Franco-Prussian War] ended, Mr. Daczewitz made his way to England.  He worked there for four months, and then made his way to the United States of North America.  He sent for his wife, Miss Clara Zobel, whom he had married in February 1871, to follow him to America, and until 1875 he worked in various large American cities, such as Boston, New York, Chicago, and Milwaukee.  He then came out to the West and settled in Carroll, Iowa, where he set up in business.  He suffered a total loss in the big fire of 1878, but bravely began again and was rewarded with success.  He later purchased a lot north of Burke’s Hotel, where he built a wagonmaking and blacksmith shop.  In 1892, he built a solid business building on Main Street, and in 1898 he built a splendid residence. 

The exemplary marriage was blessed with six children, of which, however, only three are still living: Martha, Clara, and Maria.

NOTES: The big Carroll fire was in 1879, not 1878 as stated in the article.  The town of Pirklitz might be the town of Perklice, which is in Poland today.  Also, the county name was probably Stuhm.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Franz X. Dangel


Mr. Franz X. Dangel, whose excellent portrait with his wife we present in the above picture, was born on 31 March 1844 in Altheim, Kingdom of Wuerttemberg.  He attended the schools in his hometown and learned the trade of miller, but because of an accident in which he severely injured his spine and left hip, he had to give up the business.  In 1866 he immigrated to America and settled in Galesburg, Illinois, where he learned the trade of rope-maker, at which he worked for two years.  Mr. Dangel then devoted himself to farming and worked 18 months on a farm.  He then made his way to La Crosse, Wisconsin, where he found employment in a sawmill for 18 months.  In 1871 he moved to Roselle Township, Carroll County, Iowa, where at first he stayed with his brother for three-fourths of a year.  With success, he devoted himself to farming in Carroll County, and in 1878 he visited his parents in the old hometown on the other side of the ocean, from where he returned after a year.  On  16 July 1872, Mr. Dangel married the widow Rosina Benzkofer, and then the young couple moved to the young wife’s farm in Roselle Township.  In 1879, Mr. Dangel expanded his real estate by purchasing another 160 acres in Grant Township.  In 1897 he sold his 160-acre farm in Roselle Township for an 80-acre farm in the same township, and late in that same year he moved to his farm in Grant Township.  In April 1899 the couple moved to the town of Carroll, where they purchased a beautiful and comfortable property on Main Street, in order to enjoy the fruits of their hard and successful work.  Mr. Franz X. Dangel and his wife are well known in the entire county and enjoy an excellent reputation among all their acquaintances.  The four children from the [wife’s] first marriage are named: Anna, married to Mr. Jos. Fischer in Nebraska; Joseph, married to Miss. Ch. Knobbe; Johanna, married to Mr. Raimund Dangel; and Anton, married to Miss Agnes Soat.  The marriage to  Mr. Franz X. Dangel produced one child, named Raimund, who is married to Miss Anna Niemand.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

John Eischeid
 

Mr. John Eischeid, an industrious and able farmer in Roselle Township, was born on the 16th of July 1857. [Location is not stated] He spent his youth in his hometown, and when the time came to choose an occupation, he took up the plow and worked faithfully and diligently on his parents’ farm. In 1873, his parents moved to Roselle Township, Carroll County, Iowa, where they again worked in farming. Their son John worked for his parents until he was 21 years old, when he rented a farm in Roselle Township. The good old “Vater Eischeid” died on the 23rd of March 1878, and then the dear wife and mother followed her life’s companion and husband into eternity on the 25th of August 1881.

Two and a half years later, on the 25th of February 1884, Mr. John Eischeid married the virtuous young woman, Theresia Schornagel. This very happy marriage has produced eight children, two of whom died at a tender age. The names of the children still living are: Johann, Joseph, Theodor, George, Wilhelmina, and Heinrich.

At first, Mr. Eischeid purchased a farm in Sioux County, Iowa, which he later exchanged for a 160-acre farm in Roselle Township. Later, he purchased another 80 acres, so that he is now the owner of a beautiful 240-acre farm, which is equipped with good buildings.

NOTES: The biography does not say where John Eischeid was born or what town the family came from. Roselle Cemetery records list the parents: Wm. F. Eischeid, 14 Feb 1815 to 1 Mar 1878; and Katharina Eischeid, 1 Aug 1825 to 25 August 1881, and that her maiden name was Walterscheid.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Joseph Finger and Heinrich Thielke
 

Unfortunately, the subject of our present description, Mr. Joseph Finger, is no longer among the living, but his earthly deeds stand written on the Book of Life, and his affable character is remembered by all. The deceased was born in 1833 in Knevelinghausen, Büren County, Westphalia, Germany. He received his youthful education in his hometown, and he was later called to military service. In 1863, he married Miss Maria Ehrich, but just a year later moved out with his regiment to the war against Denmark [DanishWar], and two years later he took part in the campaign against Austria [Austro-Prussian War]. He was in several battles and actions, but he returned uninjured to the care of his family, honorably discharged and decorated with the Iron Cross. In 1868, he emigrated with his family to America, where they went first to New Vienna, Dubuque County, Iowa, and in 1872 they moved to Kniest Township, Carroll County, where he purchased a beautiful 160-acre farm. But after several years, he began to notice the effects of the war campaigns, and so he retired in 1882. Unfortunately, his condition worsened from year to year, and he passed away in 1885, bemoaned and mourned by his dear wife and children.

Mr. Heinrich Thielke, who had lived on the farm for many years, married the widow Maria Finger in 1887. He was born in Blankenrode, Büren County, Hanover Province, on 26 July 1858. He received his youthful education in his hometown, and when he finished school, he worked primarily in agriculture. In 1880, he put on the uniform of his king, and a few years later, he emigrated to the United States of North America, where he made his way to Kniest Township and made the acquaintance of his dear wife, and thereafter followed the marriage. Today, the Thielke family still lives on the farm, which by virtue of its fine location, solid buildings, and excellent land, may be counted among the most valuable properties. Mr. Thielke, along with his wife and children, enjoy an excellent reputation and are respected by all their fellow-citizens.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Johann Fink
 

The bearer of the above name, Mr. Johann Fink, of whom an accurate picture appears here, was born on 11 October 1835 in Anholt, County of Borken, Westphalia, Germany.  After finishing school, he worked for his parents until he was 22 years old.  He then worked at the engineering works in Isselborg [possibly should be Isselburg].  In 1859 he was inducted into military service and was honorably discharged after serving three years.  He was then employed again at the engineering works in Isselborg.  Since Prussia became involved in a war with Denmark in 1864, Mr. Fink received his marching orders as a reservist.  He followed the call of his king and took part in the battles at Missunde and Dueppel, as well as the transfer of Alsen, and several other actions.  He was discharged with special distinction.  In October 1865, we find him on his to Essen, where he found employment in the world famous cannon factory of Friedr. Krupp.  When the war with Austria broke out, Mr. Fink was again called up.  He received his stripes [promotion], but at the complaint of Mr. Krupp, the factory owner, he was released from service.  He married Miss Wilhelmina Fischer on 4 November 1866.  As a militiaman, he took part in the German-French campaign [Franco-Prussian War], and when the war with France was over, he worked another eight years at the Krupp factory.  In 1879 he moved with his family to America, where he settled in Kniest Township, Carroll County, Iowa.  He lived here for 11 years, and then Mr. Fink purchased a farm in O’Brien County, Iowa, where he lived with his family until 1899.  He then sold the farm and moved to the town of Carroll, where he acquired a beautiful home.  Mr. Fink and his wife and children are well known in Carroll County and enjoy an excellent reputation.  This happy marriage has produced five children: Theodor, Johann, Bernhard, Wilhelmina, and Maria.

NOTES: The Krupp steelworks in Essen, Germany was one of the world’s largest arms manufacturers in the 1800s.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations. It reads as follows:
 

Roelf Freese
 

Mr. Roelf Freese was born on 30 March 1831 in Neermoor, District of Leer, Ostfriesland [East Frisia]. After successfully attending school, he worked on various farms, and in 1852 he was inducted as a soldier into the 8th Company, 7th Regiment, in Osnabrück. He served the King of Hanover for seven years, and then he was honorably discharged. He then worked a short time in the countryside, and on 26 April 1856 he married the respected Miss Taalke Kuhlmann, at which time he started working for himself. In the spring of 1861, he and his family moved to America, where they settled first in Ogle County, and then in Carroll County, Illinois. After living there for nine years, he moved with his family to Ackley, Hardin County, Iowa. Mr. Freese lived here another three and a half years, and then the family moved to Wheatland Township, Carroll County, where they purchased 240 acres of land. They later acquired another adjoining farm of 80 acres, and another 240 acres on the border of Carroll and Crawford Counties, which is well-equipped with good buildings. The Freese family are honest German-Americans and esteemed by all their acquaintances. This happy marriage produced elevenchildren, two of whom, however, have died. The names of the children still living are: Freerk, Janna, Bernd, Hauwe, Anna, Mettje, Christian, Wopke and Tiebettje, and a grandchild named Lüsse.


Translated From: Der Carroll Demokrat, Special 25th Anniversary
Edition, Friday 29 September 1899 (Original in German)

Willey and Pleasant Valley Township
 

Johann Heinrich Geling
Rector at Saint Mary's Church in Willey
 

The Reverend Joh. H. Geling was born in Wessum, County Ahrhaus, Government District Muenster to brave and Christian parents. There he attended elementary school and received First Holy Communion in the village church. Then his parents traveled to America and settled in Festina, Winneshiek County, Iowa where the father pursued farming. The son worked part time with his father on the parents' farm and part time on various other farms until he was 21 years old.

Then feeling in himself the high calling of the holy priesthood, he entered the priest seminary, where he surrendered himself with eagerness to his studies and completed the classical curriculum. Thereafter, he entered St. Joseph College where he studied Theology for one year. Then he turned to the Grand Seminary in Montreal Canada, an outstanding and renowned educational institution, where he once again for two years performed his studies and then attained the goal of his desire by being ordained a priest on 14 July 1884. On 16 July of the same year, the young pastor celebrated his first Mass in his dear hometown, Festina. At the moment, there was no position available there, so during this time he visited the Reverend Father Wegmann in Roselle and the present town of Willey. Soon thereafter he received the call to Festina where he should work as assistant priest with the Reverend Father Sauter. For three years he remained in the community, whereupon the Reverend Archbishop named him as Rector of Saint Mary's Church in Willey. In the Fall of the same year, due to the eagerness of the young priest, the community was able to build itself a church school, and during the Winter months he himself participated in the instruction of the youngsters until Fall of the next year when the nuns came from La Crosse, Wisconsin. In the year 1895 the school was enlarged through the addition of a second wing.

The church was built in the year 1882. In the year 1886, the Reverend Peter Hoffman arrived, who was the first Rector of the Saint Mary's community in Willey, and was from Christmas 1886 until September 1887. At that time the Reverend Father Geling took over the community. In the year 1893, the church was significantly enlarged, on which occasion three bells were also obtained. A second school building was constructed in the year 1895. There exist now three schoolrooms with 125 school children under the capable leadership of the esteemed Sisters of the Holy Franciscan Order of LaCrosse.

In the year 1890, the Crucifixion Chapel was constructed; a second to the honor of the Suffering Mother in the year 1898. Both chapels resulted from the very skillful hand of the Reverend Father who certainly single-handedly took care of almost the entire interior ornamentation of the church. The Dear Reader can hardly imagine the artistic skill of this gentleman in vestments. Certainly should anyone come to the friendly town of Willey, they should not neglect to visit the splendid chapels and visit the interior of Saint Mary's Church. The exquisite pulpit, constructed in Gothic style, a beautiful baptismal font, confessionals as well as many other items dedicated to this holy place, endure due to the outstanding genius of this priest-artist.

Notes: I translated this from anarticle in Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa in the late 1800's and early 1900's. I kept the spellings as they were in the original article, but I think the name should be spelled "Gehling," although I am not certain, and the county in Germany is "Ahaus."


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Chas. Gnam
 

There is hardly a person in Carroll County who enjoys a greater popularity than Mr. Chas. Gnam.  After he left the clothing business he had with an earlier partner, he opened his own clothing store on Fifth Street several years ago.  Like all beginners, Mr. Gnam also began with some anxieties.  But as soon as the business opened, his friends, who are located all over the county, came and bought.  They brought still more customers, and now he has a business that may be compared with the biggest and best in the county.  The inventory represents a value of $25,000, and one can boldly assert that the biggest and best selection of suits, overcoats, hats, caps, and men’s accessories are found at Chas. Gnam’s.  But also in respect to prices, the business is among the most reasonable in the county, and his motto is: “Good and durable goods, a low profit, and a quick turnover.”  And this motto is accompanied by the great courtesy of the owner as well as his store assistants, so that the business has earned far and wide its large support from the public of Carroll County.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. I have not changed the place or name spellings, but I have added some notes at the end. It reads as follows:
 

B. Gretemann
 

Mr. Gretemann was born in St. Lucas, Fayette County, Iowa, on 4 April 1866, to honest and Christian people who provided their intelligent son Bernard a good education. Here he bustled about in the exuberance of youth, attending the parochial school with his spelling book under his arm. He was an industrious and well-behaved student, which pleased his parents as well as the nuns. Of course, the happiest time for little Bernard was when his First Holy Communion approached. After adequate instruction, he received the Bread of Life from the good pastor. During this period of time he assisted his father in running the family farm until he was 21 years old. He then entered the employment of the Union Telephone Co. and, after a year, relocated to Roselle Township, Carroll County, Iowa, where he was employed for half a year with Mr. C. Kohorst. Then he worked for four years as a teacher in Pleasant Valley Township. In 1888, he joined with his brother, Mr. Frank Gretemann, and erected a general merchandise store in the little town of Willey. While his brother Frank conducted the business, he worked one more year as an elementary school teacher.

On 10 November 1891, he married Miss Anna Schmitt, a well-brought-up and respectable young woman, who was born in St. Lucas on 8 November 1865.

In the following year, Mr. Bernard Gretemann took over the business on his own, and since 1890 he has served as Postmaster of Willey. Within a year of taking over the business, he had to enlarge the store area with an addition because the business had experienced an unexpected boom. As he enlarged the space for the business, he also increased his inventory, so that today the business is among the most notable in the county, and the abundance of inventory leaves nothing to be desired. This significant success alone speaks to the quality of merchandise and the honesty of the management. The residents of Willey and Pleasant Valley Township have long understood that it is unnecessary to do their shopping in Carroll or other large towns. In the substantial business of Mr. Gretemann they can shop just as cheaply and receive quality as good as in any better store in a large city. Therein they have the benefit of being able to rely on the respectability of Mr. Gretemann, who is always ready to please his customers. In order to supply a long-standing need, he has been renting the business space across the street since last year, and here stocks a selection of farm machines and implements, oils and paints. In truth, the business of Mr. B. Gretemann is a very solid one that enjoys the support of all the residents of Willey and the surrounding area.

NOTES: I think the family name is usually spelled “Greteman” with one “n.” There is another biography of Mr. Greteman in: Paul MacLean, History of Carroll County, Iowa, Vol. II (Chicago: S.J. Clark Pub. Co. 1912), p. 66.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920. It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899. I have not changed the place or name spellings, but I have added some notes at the end. It reads as follows:
 

Eberhard Gretemann
 

This gentleman was born in Neukarnitz, jurisdiction of Nieberg, administrative district of Prussian Minden, on 26 May 1846. When he was 5 years old he immigrated to America with his parents, but during the trip the family suffered a heavy blow from fate. A murderous cholera outbreak occurred aboard the ship, and Mr. E. Gretemann’s dear mother and also a brother were taken by the sickness, whereupon they and many other deceased passengers found a watery grave at sea. His father then settled down in O’Plain, a small town twelve miles from Chicago, where the old gentleman worked as a hired man. After about three years his father moved to Fayette County, Iowa,


>ard attended school and received his First Holy Communion. He now helped his father in running the farm, and assisted until his father died on 20 November 1867. He worked another year for other farmers, and then married a respectable young woman, Elisabeth Kloesener, who also had been born in Neuckarnitz on 5 December 1845. The young couple rented a farm in Winneshiek County, and in 1879 they moved to Pleasant Valley Township, Carroll County, where they purchased 80 acres of prairie. Small was their start and small was the first little house where they lived happily and peacefully, but little by little they worked with God’s blessing and untiring diligence. At first they purchased another 20 acres, and then an additional 40 acres. They also purchased another 80 acres in Minnesota for their son, and built on their farm assorted buildings such as barns, stables, storehouses, and a beautiful large residence. The Gretemann family are honest Germans who enjoy the respect of all their acquaintances. Ten children are the fruit of this Christian marriage, namely: Maria, Mrs. Jos. Hoffmann; Heinrich, married to Anna Backer; Anna, Mrs. Joh. Hausmann; Johann; Franziska, Mrs. Jos. Spitz in Minn.; Katherina; Anton; Eberhard; Bernhard; and Frank.

Notes: The family names Gretemann and Hoffmann were spelled in the article with a double “n” but I think today the families use only one “n” at the end. The name Kloesener is spelled sometimes with an initial “C” in some sources. There does not appear to be a German town anywhere called “Neukarnitz” or “Neuckarnitz” as spelled in the article. I am reasonably certain that it refers to “Neukaunitz,” a village which today is part of the town of Verl, south of Bielefeld, and just east of Guetersloh.


I translated the following biography from Der Carroll Demokrat, a German-language newspaper published in Carroll, Iowa, between about 1874 and 1920.  It was originally published in a special 25th Anniversary Edition of the paper on Friday, 20 September 1899.  Information in brackets and notes at the end are my own explanations.  It reads as follows:
 

Johann B. Grossmann
 

This man was born in Bogenstraus, Kingdom of Bavaria, on 26 July 1837.  After leaving school, he took up farming.  He became a soldier at age 21, and was honorably discharged after three years.  As a reservist, he took part in the campaign of 1866  [the Austro-Prussian War], and in 1868 he immigrated with his brother Lorenz to the United States of North America and settled near St. Lucas, in Fayette County [Iowa].  On 5 April 1869, Mr. Grossmann married the widow Elisabeth Gretemann, who was the owner of a fine 80-acre farm.  The couple lived there for 17 years, during which time they increased their real estate by 160 acres.  On 23 September 1885, his wife died, and on 5 May 1886, Mr. Grossmann married again, to Anna Zenger.  He sold his land in the fall of 1889, and the following spring he and his family moved to Pleasant Valley Township, Carroll County, where he purchased 139 acres of land.  After four years, he again sold the property and moved with his family to the town of Carroll, where he purchased a fine home.  The names of the children still living from the first marriage are: Johann, Maria, Katharina, Jakob, Franz, Bernhard, and Wilhelm Gretemann, and also from this marriage was a deceased son, George Grossmann [possibly should be George Gretemann].  The name of the child from the second marriage is Anna Katharina.  Mr. Grossmann enjoys the respect of all his fellow-citizens.

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