John Merz

From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; page 483, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  John Merz, general farmer and stock raiser, was born in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, March 21, 1829. He lost his mother when he was fourteen years of age. Her name was Margaretta Darmer, and her husband was John Merz, who lived and died in his native province, at the age of sixty-seven. He was a shoemaker, and followed that trade in connection with his farming. He and his wife were long members of the Lutheran Church. Our subject is the eldest of three children. He grew up as a farmer boy and linen-weaver, and did not come to this country until he was twenty-five years of age. He landed in New York city in 1855, and came right on to Beardstown, and three days later engaged as a farm laborer and has been a tiller of the soil ever since. He has been very economical, like the most of his race, and has acquired a large property by real hard work. He is the only member of his family who has ever come to this country. He now owns 240 acres of very fine land, and has good farm buildings, having owned this since 1858, and strange as it may seem he has made every bit of his fortune by earnest, hard work, receiving help from no one.
  He was first married in Beardstown, to Louisa Rohn, who was born and reared at her father's home, not far from Beardstown. She died after five years of married life, being then only twenty-two years of age. She left one daughter, Louisa, who died at fourteen years of age, having been a very intelligent child. Mr. Merz was married in Beardstown a second time, to Miss Louisa Folks, born in Baden, Germany, who came to this country with her parents when very small. Her parents died in Schuyler county. Mr. Folks was a cooper by trade, and followed it all his life.
  Mr. and Mrs. Merz have six children: Louisa, Etta and Henry are married; Margaret, Charles and Nora are still at home. They are Lutherans in religion, and Mr. Merz is a Republican. They are among the best of Beardstown's German citizens.

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