H. C. BUCHTERKIRCHEN, one of the most substantial citizens of Staunton, Macoupin County, an extensive dealer in lumber and building material of all kinds, is a self made man, who although scarcely yet in the prime of life, has accumulated a fortune and has taken a very prominent part in the city's public life. He was born in Hanover, Germany, September 2, 1866, and is a son of August and Lezzetta (Loehr) Buchterkirchen.
The father of our subject spent his whole life in Germany, where he was a well known furniture manufacturer. He died September 26, 1878, aged 52 years, survived by his widow, who still resides in Germany. They had seven children, namely: Herman, of East St. Louis, Illinois; H. C., of this sketch; Gustav, who died in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1897, aged 27 years, and August, Carl, Wilhelm, and Albert, who are residents of Germany.
Our subject was 14 years old when he left school and learned the butchering business. In 1882 he decided to accompany a visitor from St. Louis to America, and together they sailed from Bremen. For some years after coming to the United States, Mr. Buchterkirchen was variously employed but never at any time idle. He worked at Elsah, Illinois, then at St. Louis, Missouri, and in August of the same year removed to Staunton, Macoupin County, where he secured work at mine No. 5, first on top, later under ground. He also was employed as section hand on the Wabash Railroad, went then to Worden and worked in mine No. 12, returned to Staunton for a short time, then to Jersey Landing and Jerseyville. In the last named place he was kept busy, as a carpenter during the summers, and as a butcher in the winter months, for three years. Then he went to St. Charles, Missouri, and spent three years building coaches in the car shops there. In 1888 he returned to Staunton where he had made many friends, and where he has ever since been actively engaged in business. For 10 years he was engaged in the liquor business and then embarked in his present extensive lumber business, which, although but in its infancy as to years, has outstripped almost every other business house of its kind in the southeastern section of the county.
Mr. Buchterkirchen was married December 27, 1888, to Minnie Baule, who was born January 8, 1868, at Staunton, Macoupin County, and they have three children - Lezzetta, Harry and Walter, all living at home. Mr. Buchterkirchen is completing one of the finest private residences in Staunton, which promises to not only be a home of comfort and luxury, but will also be an ornament to the city. The family belong to St. Paul's Evangelical Church.
It is not always the case that men, interested in the building up of their own fortunes, are equally alive to their duties as citizens, but Mr. Buchterkirchen has always displayed commendable public spirit and many of the city's facilities are due to his efforts while a member of the city council. He is now serving on the Board of Education, is vice-president of the Staunton Home Association, a director of the Staunton Loan & building Association and a director of the Business Men's Club. Fraternally he is a Knight of Pythias and a Woodman. In politics he is a Democrat.