Portrait & Biographical Record Winnebago & Boone Cos., IL. Chicago: Biographical Pub. Co., 1892, pp 400-403
Francis BROCKMAN, of Rockford [Winnebago County, IL], who is now living a retired life, was born in Hanover, Germany, 24 Jun 1826, and at the early age of six years was left an orphan, his parents dying ten months apart. In the family were seven children, but four died in Germany and two in this country, and for the past 26 years our subject has been the only survivor. They were all members of the Catholic Church.
Francis BROCKMAN at a very early age began earing his own livelihood. He remained in his native land until 18 years of age, when he determined to seek his fortune in the New World, and crossed the Atlantic from Bremen, landing in New Orleans in Dec 1844. He went from there to St. Louis [St. Louis County], MO, where for two years he was employed in a brick yard, after which he began working in a cigar factory. On completing the trade in Apr 1848, he went to Chicago, and in the autumn of 1848 took up his residence in Peoria [Peoria County, IL], where he remained until the following spring, when we again find him in St. Louis. At length the cholera broke out in that city, and he went up to Wurtemberg, Clayton County, IA, where his brother was living. In 1849 he returned to Peoria, where he spent the succeeding eight years of his life, running a cigar store for other parties until 1857.
While in Peoria Mr. BROCKMAN was united in marriage with Miss Louisa G. SCHLINK, who was born in Baltimore, MD, 13 Aug 1832. The same year her parents had emigrated to this country from Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany. Her father, Valentine SCHLINK, was a cooper by trade. He became a resident of Peoria County, IL, where he purchased and improved a good farm, making it his home until a few years before his death, when he moved to McLean County, IL, where his death occurred on 12 May 1890, at the age of 84 years. His wife, whose maiden name was Mary EBLER, died in Peoria County in 1877, in the 71st year of her age. They were members of the German Catholic Church, and had a large family of children. From the time she was six years of age until her marriage, Mrs. BROCKMAN was a resident of Peoria County.
In 1857 Mr. BROCKMAN came with his family to Rockford, and purchased the stock of Julius MAYR, carrying on a successful business as a tobacconist for many years. He secured a large and lucrative patronage and won a place among the well-to-do citizens of Winnebago County. He is now the owner of the business house at No. 311 State Street and several valuable residences in Rockford and Peoria, and the income derived therefrom enables him to lay aside all business cares and live a retired life, enjoying the competence which he won [p 746] by his industry and enterprising efforts. Unto Mr. and Mrs. BROCKMAN were born four children: (1) Frances L., wife of Charles GUILLMAN, foreman of the chemical department of the Fire Department of Peoria, IL; (2) Tillie M. and (3) Emma I., both at home; and (4) George, who is assistant Superintendent of the Hackensack Electric Company, of Hackensack [Bergen County], NJ. In St. Paul's Church of Brooklyn, he was united in marriage with Hattie HANLEY, of Jerseyville [Jersey County], IL.
Mr. BROCKMAN is an Odd Fellow and Trustee of his lodge. His wife is a member of the Catholic Church. They are worthy people, highly respected, and ouir subject is regarded as one of the valued citizens of Rockford. For years he has been a prominent member of the Germania society of Rockford, and has been its Treasurer for 15 years.
Submitted by Cathy Kubly.