From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and
Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing
Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 329-330, a reprinted by Stevens
Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County
Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
Henry C. Meyer, a successful brick and tile manufacturer and ice
dealer of Beardstown, Illinois, was born in Westphalia, Prussia,
September 20, 1835. His parents were Henry C. and E. (Hildabrandt)
Meyer. His father was an efficient soldier for fifteen years under the
general command of the first Emperor William, when they were both young
men. His father participated in many active engagements, and was highly
respected by his superior officers. In 1843, the family emigrated to
the Unites States, arriving, after a voyage of fifteen weeks, in New
Orleans, from which place they were nearly as long in reaching
Evansville, Indiana, by the Mississippi and Ohio rivers. They settled
in Knox county, Indiana, where in 1857, the devoted wife and mother
died. Some years later, the father came to Beardstown to visit his son,
who had gone to that place some time before. He subsequently died at
his son's home in 1878, at the age of seventy years. He was a man of
sterling qualities of mind and heart, and enjoyed, with his wife, the
heartfelt esteem of all who knew them. Both parents were devout members
of the Evangelical Church.
The subject of this sketch came to Beardstown in 1857, when a
poor, young man, having at that time only $5 in his pocket. He
commenced, in a primitive manner, to work at his present business,
moulding brick with his hands, which was then the usual way. He was
thus employed when the Civil war broke out, and in 1861 he volunteered
his services to the Government, but the quota having been filled he was
not accepted. He purchased his first land in that year, near
Arenzville. By unremitting industry and careful economy, he gradually
accumulated means, which he invested in the best improvements
obtainable for the manufacture of brick and tile, besides branching out
in other directions. He now makes about 1,000,000 brock and many
thousand rods of tile annually, being the largest manufacturer in that
line in his county. He is also extensively engaged in the ice business,
which he has successfully conducted for the past twenty years, his ice
houses now having a capacity of 12,000 tons. He has gradually added to
his first purchase of land, until he now owns 1,000 acres of choice
realty in Cass county' 900 of which are well improved and cultivated,
and 300 being under his own management.
He was married about 1862, to Miss Mollie Boy, who was born and
raised near Arenzville, of which vicinity her people were early and
respected pioneers. Both of her parents are now dead. Mr. and Mrs.
Meyer have had eight children, seven of whom survive: Louis, who
married Tilla Piehler; Elizabeth, wife of A. E. Cameron, a successful
jeweler of Beardstown; Albert, assisting his father at home; Lydia,
wife of Charles Lebkucher, a prosperous farmer of this county; Mollie,
Herold and Adalaide, living at home.
Politically, Mr. Meyer supports the issues of the Democratic
party, and, while being no office seeker, takes an interest in all
local and public affairs of importance.
Both he and his worthy wife are useful members of the Fourth
Evangelical Lutheran Church. Mr. Meyer has not attained his success
without earnest and persistent endeavor; wholly unaided, he has, by
industry and economy, acquired his present prosperity; while by upright
dealings and uniform courtesy he has secured the universal esteem of
his fellow men.