Portrait & Biographical Record Winnebago & Boone Cos., IL. Chicago: Biographical Pub. Co., 1892, pp 584-585
With the rapid and steady advance of the city of Rockford, with the continual increase in her building operations, the trade of a mason-contractor is one of primary importance, and is one on which the first step of progress is dependent. To be a good mason requires years of experience, and Mr. BUSKE has had this. He has done some fine contracting work for leading business houses, including the Rockford Opera House, the Rockford Burial Case Works, the foundation for the YMCA building, the Forest City Knitting Company's large establishment and two large stone banking buildings for Gilbert WOODRUFF, and has now under contract two large school houses, the Brown and Montague school buildings.
Mr. BUSKE came to this city in 1868, and was engaged in journeyman work for some time. He built the jail of this place and then wernt to Chicago, just after the great fire of 1871, and was engaged in following his trade at that place for two years. Returning to Rockford, he has since been actively engaged in contracting, and besides the above mentioned buildings, there are the EMERSON & TALCOTT power house, the large Germania Hall, besides many private buildings which he has erected. He owns a good business house at No. 505 West State Street, and a very fine brick residence at No. 712 Elm Street, besides other property in the city.
Our subject was born in Parmman, Prussi, on 20 Mar 1841, and was the first of the family to take up his residence in this country. He took passage on the vessel "Schiller," and landed in Baltimore on 02 Jul. Six months later he came to Rockford, being obliged to tarry long enough in Baltimore to earn the money to bring him to Rockford. He has been so successful since his residence in Rockford that his brother Albert came over, and is now running the rendering works of this city. The latter was married in his native country and brought his wife with him.
The parents of these children passed their entire lives in their native country of Prussia, and the father was a wagonmaker by trade. He was a hardworking, industrious man, and lived to be 84 years of age. His wife died in 1889, when 72 years of age. Both were members of the Lutheran Church.
Our subject was married in his native province two weeks before he came to America, and selected as his wife Miss Henrietta HOFBERT, who was also a native of Prussia. Her father, August HOFBERT, was [p 585] the owner of a large farm, and was a very successful tiller of the soil. He and his wife passed their entire lives in Prussia, lived to be old people, and were worthy members of the Lutheran Church. One of their daughters, Mrs. Fredrica GAN, a widow, resides at 156 Union Street, Chicago, and runs a milk depot.
Nine children have blessed the union of our subject and his wife, and are named as follows: Adolph, a plumber and tinner of the firm of ROGER & BUSKE; Louie, now in the employ of a telephone company in Muskegon, MI; Anna, a steamstress; Eda, William, Hattie, Clara, Walter and Richard, all but one at home. Mr. and Mrs. BUSKE are possessed of those characteristics that make the people of Germany so successful in their different occupations, and are surrounded by many warm friends. Mr. BUSKE served his native country in the regular army, and from 1861 to 1866 was in the rebellion against Austria, participating in some of the principal battles. He leans toward the Republican party in his political views.
Submitted by Cathy Kubly.