Oconto County WIGenWeb Project
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OCONTO COUNTY
Wisconsin
FAMILIES and BIOGRAPHIES

 .Henry Drees.

Survivors of the 1871 Great Peshtigo Fire
Researched and contributed by descendant:   Pat Drees


Henry Drees

Louise Keil Nelding Drees

Photographs by:   Pat Drees

 Mrs. Louise Keil Nelding was 7 months pregnant with daughter Lillian at the time of the 1871 Peshtigo Fire. Her first husband died sometime after the birth of their second child Emil in 1875.  In 1877 she became the second wife of Henry Drees.  

Henry Drees and first wife Mary M. were also survivors of the fire along with daughters Jennie and Hattie.

Generation 1

Thomas Drees
    born 1800 in Preussen (Prussia, now Germany)
    immigrated between 1852 and 1860

    died before 1870 in Peshtigo, Oconto, Wisconsin
+ Catherine - wife of Thomas

    born 1807 in Preussen (Prussia, now Germany)
    married in Prussia

    died after 1870 in Peshtigo, Oconto, Wisc

    Note on Catherine Drees - widowed head of household at the time she survived the 1871 Peshtigo Fire.

    Children of Thomas and Katherine Drees: (all living in Peshtigo, Wisconsin in 1860)

        1. John Drees b. 1833, in Prussia;  Married Mary Iickman March 3, 1863 in Oconto County, saloon keeper in Peshtigo in 1870 and
both age 38 with no children .

        2. Henry Drees b. 1836, in Prussia
 Married Mary M. Kratz and had 5 children; married Louisa (nee: Keil) Nelding and had 5 children, adopted 2 Nelding children.

        3. Joseph T. Drees b. 1838 in Prussia - Laborer married # 1 Elizabeth ? who died in the 1871 Peshtigo Fire with sons John age 5 and Edward age 2; married # 2 Augusta ? born in Germany May 1838 in 1872; seven children all born in Wisconsin were: Edward born April 1872  married LuLu Eliot October 15, 1890 in Marinette County, Edwin married May 20, 1889, Charles born  October 1875, Bertha born September 1877, Gusta born September 1879, Ida born September 3,1881 died January 9, 1877 in Los Angeles, California, married Homer Kintrea Flitton

        4. Edward Drees b.  1840, in Prussia; blacksmith in Peshtigo; married Mary ? December 1869 but this wife died before 1880. Children of E. & M. Drees buried in Peshtigo Cemetery
William E.  Died June 9. 1879 Aged 7 yrs 3m 25 dys 
Odiliah H.  Died June 9. 1879 Aged 5 yre 5m 29 ds
 
Married Rose E. age 19 no children on 1880 census

        5. Eugene Joseph Drees b.  1846, in Prussia married Adolina Martin August 14, 1877 in Oconto County ; Children Adolf 1881 (married Alvina? 1891 - 1963 and had 5 children in Grover, Marinette County, Wisconsin), Henry 1884 (married Mary; son Harold Feb 8, 1909 - July 18, 1989 Peshtigo married Ethel England born July 13, 1910), Arthur 1891

        6. Emily (Mary) Drees b.  1852 in Prussia..

Generation 2

Henry Drees
    born 1836 in Germany occupied
France
    died 1900 in Peshtigo, Wisconsin
    Laborer and volunteer fireman

+ Mary M. Kratz  Marriage 1
     born 1846 in Germany
     died 1877 in Peshtigo, Wisconsin

Peshtigo Cemetery
Mary M. (nee: Kratz)
wife of Henry Drees
Died March 1, 1877
age 31 years
~
Hillary
son of H. & M M Drees
Born April 12, 1872
Died  April 29, 1872

Children of Henry and Mary:

   1. Jennie  Drees b: 1868 married Charles Mollendorf b. 1866; 5 children Clara Anna, Harold C., Paul Henry, Jean, Robert W. Lived in Cook County, Illinois
   2. Hattie  Drees b:  1870
   3. Hillary  Drees b: 12 April 1872 d. April 29, 1872 in Peshtigo, Oconto (now Marinette) Co., WI
   4. Lizzie (Elizabeth Frances Josephine)  Drees b: April 29, 1876 d. December 26, 1943 in Ingelwood, California; married Frank Wellington McLean July 20, 1904 in Morenci, Arizona. One son Donald Caneron McLean 1908 - 1993.
   5. Martha  Drees b: 1877

+ Louise Keil Nelding Marriage 2
    born June 1852 in 
Prussia
    died January 15, 1919.
    immigrated 1868
    Married #1 ? Nelding 1870 in Wisconsin:
two children Lillie, born December 1871 in Wisconsin and Emil, born Sept 1975 in Illinois and died 1848 in Wisconsin, both adopted the Drees surname
    Married #2 Henry Drees May 10, 1877 in Wisconsin

Children of Henry and Louisa:

   1. Albert (Michael) Drees b:  January 1878 Married in 1896 to Cora ? born 1878 in Wisconsin, 4 children
   2. Amelia  Drees b: March 1880 
   3. Clara  Drees b: September 1883 
   4. George  Drees b: February 1885 Married Rena M. ? born 1890 in Wisconsin, 2 children
   5. Lucille  Drees b: April 1888 

Peshtigo, Wisconsin .
.January 13, 1927 .

. DEATH OF FORMER RESIDENT .

.Mrs. Henry Drees, a former pioneer resident of thie city passed away at the home of her daughter, Mrs. A. J. Everson at Akron, Ohio, on January 13th, death being due to old age, being 74 years of age. She was a survivor of the Peshtigo fire. She is survived by four daughters, Lillian of Madison, Clara and Amelia of Los Angeles, Mrs. Everson of Akron where she resided for the past few years, and three sons, Albert of Milwaukee, Emil and George of Chicago. The family members were all with her during her final illness. The funeral was held at Chicago with interment at the Arlington cemetery. She also had relatives residing in Chicago and in Peshtigo.

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