Lee County Biography


The true measure of success is determined by what one has accomplished and judged by this standard W.E. Trein is a successful man, for he started out in life without any special advantages and is today the leading jeweler of Dixon. His success from the beginning of his connection with his present business has been uniform and rapid and yet an analysis of his life work shows that he has utilized only such qualities as others may cultivate--determination, energy and perseverance. He was born in Dixon in 1873 and is a son of Jacob and Mary Trein, who came to this city and cast in their lot with its early residents. The father, who was a blacksmith by trade, had one of the early shops of the town and was later with the Van & Means carriage shop as foreman for a long period. He was thus a well known representative of industrial life in the community and his efforts gave an impetus to business activity. He has now passed away but his widow still survives and yet makes her home in Dixon.

When W.E. Trein started out on his own account he had received such education as the public schools of the city afforded. He felt it incumbent upon him, however, to earn his own living and he sought and obtained employment in the jewelry store of Dodge & Kling. Later he entered the employ of G.O. Windell and while thus connected gained a comprehensive knowledge of the business in principle and detail. The careful husbanding of his resources brought him at length sufficient capital to enable him to carry on the business alone and in 1901 he opened a jewelry store in Ashton, Illinois, which he conducted for five years, selling out there in 1906. He then returned to Dixon and purchased a half interest in the store of his former employer. G.O. Windell. Subsequently he bought out E.L. Kling and is today proprietor of the leading jewelry store of the city, carrying a stock which would be a credit to a city of much larger size. This store is well appointed in every particular and he has a large line of goods of of both foreign and domestic manufacture. His business affairs are conducted along the strictest lines of commercial integrity and, moreover, his life is exemplary in other respects.

In 1907 Mr. Trein was united in marriage to Miss Janet Griffith, of Ashton, Illinois, and they have a pleasant home in Dixon and delight to extend to their many friends its hospitality. They hold membership in the English Lutheran church and in politics Mr. Trein is a progressive republican. He is always courteous, kindly and affable and those who know him personally have for him a warm regard. As has been truly remarked, after all that may be done for a man in the way of giving him early opportunities for obtaining the requiremeuts which are sought in school and in books, he must essentially formulate, determine and give shape to his own character and this is what Mr. Trein has done. He has persevered in the pursuit of a persistent purpose and has gained a most satisfactory reward.

Transcribed by Karen Holt - 1914 History of Lee County Illinois Vol 2 by Frank E. Stevens.


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