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Source: Album of Genealogy and Biography, Cook County, Illinois with Portraits 3rd. ed. revised and extended (Chicago: Calumet Book & Engraving Co., 1895), pp. 564-565.

CHRISTIAN THIELE, a well-known citizen of Proviso Township, this county, is a native of Germany, his birth having occurred in Hanover, on the 19th of January, 1834. His boyhood and youth were quietly passed; the common schools afforded him his educational privileges, and in his native land he learned the carpenter's trade. Thinking to better his financial condition by emigrating to the New World, in 1850 he sailed for America, and after a voyage of nine weeks landed in New York City. During the trip across the water he served as the ship's carpenter. He left home with a capital of $50, which his father gave him, and with this he started out in life in the United States, a stranger in a strange land. After remaining in New York City for a short time, he took an emigrant train to Chicago.

On reaching that place, Mr. Thiele found that his money was exhausted, but he soon secured employment as a carpenter, and thus worked for about eighteen months. He then went to what is now Addison, and worked at his chosen trade, building houses for the farmers of that locality for a period of about nine years. With the capital thus acquired, he purchased a ten-acre tract of land where the village of Proviso now stands, and has here made his home continuously since. He rented an additional tract, and turned his attention to farming, which he carries on in connection with the hay business.

In 1857, Mr. Thiele was joined in marriage with Miss Minnie Summerman, of Cook County, and unto them were born two children: Henry, who is now carrying on a grocery on Madison Street, in Oak Park, Chicago; and Sophia, wife of William Ruchty, a resident of Fullersburg. In the year 1872, the mother of this family was called to her final rest, and in 1874 Mr. Thiele was again married, his second union being with Miss Margaret Bernard, by whom he has two children, a son and daughter, Arno and Lizzie, both at home.

Mr. Thiele is now the owner of one hundred and sixty acres of valuable land in Cook County, together with a handsome brick residence, store and saloon, which are valued at $23,000. He also has a granary worth $6,000. Everything that he now possesses has been acquired through his own efforts. When he reached Chicago, he slept for two nights in the depot, for he had not money enough to pay for lodging. Undaunted, however, by the difficulties in his path, he soon secured work, and as he was enabled to save something from his earnings, he made judicious investments of his capital, and is now numbered among the substantial citizens of this community. He may be truly called a self-made man. In his political views, Mr. Thiele is a Republican, and has served his township as Highway Commissioner.


– Submitted by Sherri Hessick on May 18, 2008.


DISCLAIMER:  The submitter is not related to the subject of this biography nor is she related to anyone mentioned in the biography.