Lee County Biography
Martin William Brauer
Many of the most thrifty and intelligent agriculturiest of this section of Illinois, were born and reared on the other side of the Atlantic, and to Germany especially, is Lee County indebted for some of her most enterprising and prosperous citizens. Such is the gentleman whose name heads this sketch, and who was born in Javer Dukedom, Oldenburg, Germany, March 12, 1815. He was reared and received a good educationin his native place, and at the early age of sixteen years went to sea, setting out as man-before-the-mast. He sailed the seas on merchant vessels for about 10 years, being as far north as longitude 10 degrees and as far south as Costa Rica. At the expiration of that time he returned to his native home, and in 1840 sailed for the US. Proceeding directly to this State he settled in Palmyra Township, this county.
In 1848 Mr. Brauer returned to Germany and while there was married to Miss Helen Harms. This lady was born and reared in Oldenburg and like her husband, came of good German stock. Immediately after her marriage she accompanied her husband to the US and has assisted him in building up their attractive homestead. She became the mother of two sons - Anton, a successful young farmer, married Lillie Butler and they live on a farm in Sterling Township, Whiteside County, this State, with their two children, Myrtle and Lee; Frank lives on the old homestead, which he manages in connection with property of his own, comprising 170 acres. He married Miss Dora Walter of this county and they have three children, Etta, Fred and Walter.
Religiously, Mr. and Mrs. Brauer are sincere Christian people and members of the Lutheran Church. Mr. Brauer uses his political influence in favor of the Democratic party, but formerly was a Republican.
One of the most valuable farms of this county is owned and cultivated by Mr. Brauer, who is well and favorable known throughout the county. As a splendid example of what may be accomplished by an energetic, determined and economical man, we point to Mr. Brauer, who is a representative farmer, and who owns a splendid estate of 140 acres of fertile land, with a find and substantial set of buildings thereon, besides 30 acres of timber. He secured his farm upon first coming here in 1840, when it was in a wild and unbroken state, and on it he began life in true pioneer style and has since brought it to its present fine condition. As is plainly to be seen, he is the architect of his own fortune, which he has accumulated by thrift, sagaciousness and perseverance.
Portrait and Biographical Record - Lee County Pg 850