FRED G. OELTJEN. One of the influential citizens of Carlinville, who has been a prominent factor in the political and business circles of the county is Fred G. Oeltjen. He is a native of Oldenburg, Germany, his birth having there occurred on the 6th of October, 1852, being a son of R. G. and Taletta (Rogge) Oeltjen. The parents emigrated to the United States with their family in 1867, locating on a farm in Carlinville, Macoupin county. The cultivation of this property engaged the energies of Mr. Oeltjen until twelve or fourteen years prior to his demise when he retired to Carlinville, where he was residing when he passed away in April, 1892, at the age of seventy-one. His wife survived until the 7th of October, 1900, her demise occurring at the age of eighty. Both were earnest members of the Lutheran church. To Mr. and Mrs. Oeltjen there were born seven children: Albert F., who is a resident of Chicago; Fred G., our subject; Reinhard E., who is living in Petersburg, Illinois; Gesine, the widow of Henry W. Frewert, of Petersburg; Emma, who married Gustav Kasten, of Carlinville; Meta, the wife of Benjamin Bulcar, of Monticello, Iowa; and Mary, the wife of Albert Loehr, of Carlinville.
Fred G. Oeltjen was a youth of fifteen years when he emigrated to the United States with his parents, since which he has always made his home in Carlinville. He acquired a very good common-school education in his native country, this being supplemented upon his arrival here by a course in Blackburn University, upon the completion of which he taught for a time. Later he entered public life and served for six or seven years as township clerk, while in 1894 he was the successful candidate for the office of county clerk. After the expiration of his term of office he opened a real estate and loan office, which he has ever since maintained. Mr. Oeltjen also devotes considerable time to literary pursuits, being a contributor to various newspapers, and a stockholder of the Mount Olive Teutonia, a German weekly paper. In 1883 he was awarded a prize of fifty dollars for the best humorous article in German dialect, submitted in a contest.
On the 21st of May, 1906, Mr. Oeltjen was united in marriage to Mrs. Nora Gerhart, the widow of George Gerhart and a daughter of Thomas and Christina (Cowell) Jones. Mrs. Oeltjen was born in Carlinville, her father also being a native of Illinois, but her mother was born in England, the maternal grandparents being among the early settlers of Macoupin county. Mr. Jones passed away in Kansas in 1880, at the age of thirty-seven years, but the mother still survives and continues to make her home in Carlinville. Of the three children born unto Mr. and Mrs. Jones, Mrs. Oeltjen is the eldest, the other two being Maggie, the wife of Charles Hankins; and Charles. To Mr. and Mrs. Oeltjen has been born one daughter, an interesting little maid of three years.
They attend the Lutheran church and politically Mr. Oeltjen is an ardent republican, being one of the leaders of his party in this county. He always takes an active part not only in all municipal and county affairs but in state and national campaigns. His business enterprises have proven very successful and in addition to several buildings and other pieces of property in the city he owns a fine sixty acre farm four miles east of Carlinville. Endowed with a pleasing personality and genial manner Mr. Oeltjen wins many friends, whose loyalty he has the faculty of retaining and is one of the most popular men not only in his immediate community but in the county, where he is held in high esteem.