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Brown County
Minnesota
 
Genealogy and History


Biographies

Edward Bahe
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Marilyn Clore
 

BAHE Edward J, Hancock. Editor. Born May 8, 1870 in Faribault Minn, son of Conrad and Mary (Thurnau) Bahe. Married Feb6, 1899 to Mabelle V Thayer. Educated in graded and high schools Faribault. Learned printing trade in office of Faribault Republican 1885-90; of firm of Wright & Bahe publishers of Springfield (Minn) Advance 1891-93; foreman Albert Lea Evening Tribune 1898-99; established Hancock (Minn) Record of 1899 and has published same to date. Sec Hancock Realty Co; Judge of probate Stevens county 1903-1907.


Benedict Bangerter
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Marilyn Clore
 

BANGERTER Benedict Jr, Mankato. Res 527 N Broad, office Court House. Public official. Born Jan 30, 1860 in Brown county Minn, son of Benedict and Maria (Sahli) Bangerter. Married Jan 29, 1887 to Anna K Roos. Educated in public schools of Mankato. Engaged as shoemkr 1875-79; bkpr 1879-97; elected register of deeds 1897; term expires Jan 1, 1909. Dir First Nat Bank. Member Board of Education 1890-91; B P O E and Commercial Club.


Paul Baumgartner
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Marilyn Clore

BAUMGARTNER Paul E, Winona. Born April 8, 1862 in Brown county Minn, son of Bernard Baumgartner. Married 1887 to Luella Vance. Educated in Mankato public schools and Winona High School. First engaged in teaching school Brown county 1880-81; employed as messr Winona Deposit Bank 1881-82; bkpr 1881-85; teller 1885-90; asst cashr 1890-95; cashr 1895 to date. Dir First National Bank Hallock; Farmers & Merchants Bank Roseau; Farmers & Merchants Bank Greenbush. Member Business Men’s Asssn.


Frederick Beinhorn
Source: Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society (1912) Volume XIV; Page 44; transcribed by FoFG mz

Beinhorn, Frederick, b. in Braunschweig, Germany, in 1821; d. in New Ulm, Minn., Nov. 1, 1900. He came to the United States in 1852, and to New Ulm two years later; owned a saw and grist mill, and later engaged in mercantile business.


John Bobleter
Source: Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society (1912) Volume XIV; Page 61; transcribed by FoFG mz

Bobleter, John, pioneer, b. in Austria, Jan. 24, 1818; d. in New Ulm, Minn., Dec. 15, 1900. He came to the United States in 1853; settled in New Ulm in 1856.


Joseph Bobleter
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. Publ. 1907 Transcribed by Rhonda Hill

BOBLETER Joseph, New Ulm. Banker. Born Apr 19, 1846 in Dornbirn Austria. Educated in public schools; postmaster New Ulm 1873-85; member legislature 1883; state treas 1887-95; now cashr Brown County Bank; served in Civil War; member M N G since 1871 and now brig gen 1st Brigade; served in Spanish American War.


C. C.Brandt
Source: Warren Sheaf (Jan. 12, 1881) submitted by fofg mb

Hon. C.C. Brandt, of Sigel, Brown County, has invented a model of a certain apparatus to be used in cattle cars, so constructed that feed and water can be furnished to the cattle while on the cars.


Louis Buenger
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Renae Donaldson

BUENGER Louis J, New Ulm. Merchant. Born Nov 18, 1868 in New Ulm Minn, son of Louis and Henrietta (Ipps) Buenger. Educated in the public schools New Ulm and business college. Worked for Eagle Roller Mill Co New Ulm 1881-87; 1 year with Lindeke Roller Mills St Paul; with Weidenborner Bros carpets 1889-92; royal Furn & Carpet Co 1893-96; traveled for Barnard Bros& Co furniture manufacturers Minneapolis 1896-98; in furniture and undertaking business for self New Ulm 1898 to date. Served in M N G. Member Commercial Union New Ulm.


Florence Andrews Clayton
American Women Fifteen Hundred Biographies Vol. 1, by Frances Elizabeth Willard & Mary Ashton Rice Livermore, Publ. 1897. Transcribed by Marla Snow

CLAYTON, Mrs. Florence Andrews, opera singer, born near Le Sueur, Minn., in 1862. She is the ninth child of Rev. Mr. Andrews, one of the pioneer Methodist ministers of Minnesota. At that time Le Sueur was well out on the western frontier, and most of the settlers of that region abandoned their homes and crowded into St. Peter during the Indian outbreak. The Andrews family stuck to their farm near the little village. Two of the older sons entered the army of defense against the Indians and were in the battle of New Ulm. Both Mr. Andrews and his wife were natural, though untrained musicians, and all of their ten children, known as the Andrews Family, inherited musical ability. In 1876 Miss Andrews, then fourteen years of age, went upon the stage with her brothers and sisters for their first year with the "Swiss Bells.'' They played in Minnesota and adjoining States, making trips southward as far as the southern border of the Indian Territory. She has since then been continually before the public, except for longer or shorter vacations. She became the wife of Fred Clayton, of Cleveland, Ohio, in 1883, who is also with the present Andrews Opera Company. They have two sons. The musical culture of Mrs. Clayton has been received mostly by instruction from and association with some of the most competent vocal artists of the country, while she has been traveling and working with them. She has thus obtained that thorough and practical knowledge of her art which can be secured in no other way. Her repertoire consists of forty operas, tragic and comic. She is not only an excellent vocalist, but also a fine actor, with a natural adaptation to dramatic parts. Her voice is a contralto.


Ernest Critchett
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Liz Dellinger 

CRITCHETT Ernest T.  New Ulm.  Superintendent city schools.  Born July 30, 1863 in Concord N H son of Moses B and Emily J (Yeaton) Critchett.  Married June 15, 1887 to Helen M Crooker.  Graduated from Concord (N H) High School 1881; Dartmouth College A B 1885; A M 1888.  Prin Pleasant Grove Grammar School Mankato Minn 1885;  Principal high school Mankato 1886-88; prin high school Duluth 1889-93; supt city schools New Ulm Minn 1894 to date.  Has conducted Teachers’ Training schools in Minn several years.  Member Minn Education Assn; Nat Educational Assn and Nat Geographic Society.  Member Masonic fraternity.


Jacob P. Current
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

Jacob P. Current is numbered among the pioneer settlers of Brown county of 1864, and has since been identified with its agricultural interests and with the work of development and progress in this section of the state. He is a native of Henry county, Indiana, born September 29, 1835, and is a son of James and Mary (Powers) Current, both of whom were natives of Virginia. His father, a blacksmith by trade, could do almost any kind of work with edged tools. He was born in 1809 and died in 1895. His wife is still living, at a very advanced age. He was of the fifth generation of a family of Scotch-Irish origin that was founded in America by three brothers, who were Irish sailors. Having located in Virginia they secured twelve hundred acres of land and became well known planters of that state.
Mr. Current of this review was reared in Indiana, and spent his summer months in work upon the home farm, while in the winter season he attended the district schools. In 1857 he went west, visiting Iowa and Nebraska. In 1860 he went to Colorado, where he worked for several months in the mines and then returned to the state of his nativity. Since 1864 he has been a resident of Brown county, Minnesota and secured a claim, which he at once began to operate. He did an extensive business as a surveyor and retraced the government lines of the greater part of the land in the nortwestern part of this county, also followed the profession in Nicollet and Redwood counties. Probably no one is more familiar with the early history of this section of the state and with the development and progress than have since been carried on than he; and in all the work of improvement he has borne an active part. He is an industrious, enterprising business man and has devoted his energies to the manufacture of sorghum molassses, to general farming and surveying. He owns a valuable property of three hundred acres, and the place is in a high state of cultivation, which indicates his careful supervision and earnest labor.
Mr. Current was married in 1872 to Miss Elizabeth Krier, daughter of John Krier. She died in 1873, leaving one daughter, Una, at home. In his political affiliations Mr. Current is a Democrat, and has filled various public offices of honor and trust. He served as supervisor of his township, and is filling the office of postmaster at Home postoffice. Widely and favorably known he well deserves mention among the honored pioneers of the county, and it is with pleasure that we present the record of his life to our readers.


William Dey
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

William Dey, postmaster of Golden Gate, is a successful merchant of that place and is one of the worthy and reliable citizens of that Scotland has furnished to Minnesota. He was born in the "land of hills and heather", August 8, 1850, and is a son of Robert and Ann (Bruce) Dey, both of whom were reared in Scotland. The father is now deceased, but the mother is yet living. They had ten children, four sons and six daughters, all of whom yet survive.
William is the second in order of birth, and in his native country he was reared and educated, attending the parish schools until sixteen years of age. In 1877 he was united in marriage with Allison Honeyman, daughter of James Honeyman. He then turned his attention to the dairy business, which he carried on for three and a half years. On the expiration of that period he determined to try his fortune in America, and in April, 1882, he landed in New York city, whence he went to Ohio. In the fall of that same year he came to Golden Gate, Brown county, Minnesota, and purchased the merchandise stock of H. Wearing. He also spent four and a half years on a farm north of Golden Gate, and owns and operates eighty five acres of land, which yields him a good income. He also carries a large and carefully selected stock of general merchandise, and his well appointed store receives from the public a liberal patronage. In business he is systematic and methodical, and his honorable dealing commands the confidence of all.
In 1886, Mr. Dey was appointed to the position of postmaster of Golden Gate and has since held that office. He is also clerk of the town. He served as notary public, and for nine years held the office of district treasurer. Prompt and faithful in the discharge of his official duties, he has won the commendation of all concerned and is widely known as a trustworthy citizen. Socially he is connected with the Ancient Order of United Workmen, also A. F. & A. M.


Andrew Eckstein
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Anna Parks 

ECKSTEIN Andrew, New Ulm. Res 410 N Washington st, office 125 N Minnesota st. Druggist.  Born Sept 9, 1861 in Germany Europe, son of John and Magdalena (Keim) Eckstein.  Married June 3, 1884 to Christine Pietrus.  Educated in the common schools and state normal school ManKato until 16.  Taught school 1877-79.  Clerk for Dr Weschcke druggist 187-89; in same business for self 1889 to date.  Chairman Board of County Commissioners 6 years.  Chairman Board of Public works New Ulm 20 years; pres New Ulm Plate Glass Assn New Ulm; New Ulm State Bank; Minnesota Conference Charities & Corrections; dir Mutual Fire Insurance Co and Minn Pharm Mnfg Co. Member American and State Pharmaceutical assns. Charter member of Retail Druggists Assn and for many years connected with M N G as asst inspector general brigade staff.


Lars Frederickson
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota  - Transcribed by Gary Boomgaarden

Lars Frederickson is entitled to rank with the prominent early settlers of Brown county, Minnesota, he having established his home at his present location in Prairieville township as early as 1868, and here for nearly three decades he has lived and prospered. He made the acquaintance of many of the early settlers of the county as well as those who came later. and few there are throughout this section of the country who are better informed as to its history or better known by its people than is Lars Frederickson.

While not an American by birth, he is one by adoption and is thoroughly identified with its interests and in harmony with its institutions. Mr. Frederickson was born in Denmark, August 30, 1845, his parents being Fredrick and Christene (Oleson) Petersen, natives of that country. His father was a brickmason and a first class mechanic, and as such worked in both the old country and this. He died in Brown county, Minnesota, at the age of sixty eight years. His widow survives him, still lives in this county, and has reached the venerable age of eighty five years. Their family comprised nine children, four sons and five daughters, whom they brought up to the habits of industry and honesty and who are now occupying useful positions in life. Lars grew up in his native land, recieved a fair education there, and was engaged in agricultural pursuits in Denmark until 1866. That year he sailed from Copenhagen to Hull and thence to Liverpool, where he took passage on the noted steamer City of Paris, which carried him in safety across the Atlantic and landed in due time at Castle Garden, New York. From New York City youn Frederickson made his way across the country to Chicago, Illinois, where he landed without money, his passage to that place having consumed all the funds he had. However, he had plenty of courage and a strong and willing hand, and he soon secured employment on a farm, where worked fifteen months, recieving good wages. From Illinois he came to Minnesota, at this time accompanied by his parents and his wife and child, and in Brown county at once selected his present location and established his home in primitive style. His first house here was a sod one, three feet of earth being scooped out and the rafters made of poles; but in this rude house they lived happily and comfortably, and cheerfully extended hospitality to whomsoever came their way, no matter whether stranger or friend. He was here during the "grasshopper" days and suffered greatly from that pest; but, notwithstanding the discouragements he met he stuck to his claim with a persistence almost unparalleled in this part of the country, he being the only settler on the Burns and Sleepy Eye road who remained. He kept cows, made butter and raised calves, and finally better times came on and he prospered and bought other land, and at one time he had four hundred and forty acres. He has, however, sold off some of his land in order to help his children get comfortably settled, and now his home farm comprises only one hundred and eighty acres. This farm is one of the best improved ones in Brown county. The sod house long since gave place to a better one and his present modern residence was erected at a cost of eighteen hundred dollars. The large barn measures fifty six by one hundred and eight feet, a modern windmill is a noticeable feature, and the fine grove of eighteen acres is said to be unsurpassed by any other in the county. Formerly, Mr. Frederickson raised large quantities of grain and stock, principally hogs and cattle, but of recent years his operations have not been so extensive. At one time he kept a dairy of twenty cows. He is now giving some attention to fruit growing, having an orchard of five acres planted to a variety of apples, plums, etc.

Mr. Frederickson was married in Denmark in 1866, to Miss Maria Sorensen, daughter of Jasper and Martha (Nelson) Sorenson, all natives of Denmark and now residents of Brown county, Minnesota. She is one of a family of three daughters and is a most estimable lady. Their union has been blessed in the birth of five children, of whom the following are living: S.C., who married Miss Hannah Larson, is one of the prosperous young farmers of this township and the owner of eighty acres of choice land; N.P., a jeweler of Minneota, Lyon county, Minnesota; Martha, wife of Thomas Peterson, of Brown county, has one child, Clifford; and Anna, wife of Adolph Anderson, of this county. Their youngest child, Hannah, died at the age of nine months.

Mr. Frederickson is a man well posted and one of broad and liberal views. He was reared a Lutheran. Politically, he formerly gave his support to the Republican party, his first vote having been cast for General Grant. Now, however, he is a third party man and believes that the platform he has chosen is the one best suited to the greatest number of people. In various local capacities he has rendered effcient service. For eight years he was chairman of the township board and also for years he served on the school board.

Such is a succinct review of the life of this respected citizen.


Louis Fritsche
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Nancy Overlander

Fritsche Louis Albert, New Ulm. Physician and Surgeon . Born May 28, 1862 in Lafayette Minn, son of Fred and Louis Littie Fritsche. Married in 1890 to Amalie Pfaender. Attended high school St Peter; graduated from medical dept Univ of Michigan 1887; from medical dept Friedrich Wiulhelm Univ Berlin Germany 1890. Practiced in New Ulm to date.l Pres Brown County Bank; New Ulm Publ Co; v pres New Ulm Roller Mill Co; New Ulm Feed & Cereal Mill Co; dir Morton Merchant Milling Corp; Hanenstein Brewing Co; prop New Ulm Hardware Co and stockholder New Ulm Stone Co etc. Surgeon St Alexander’s Hospital; dir and medical dir Commercial Men’s Health Assn of Minn; pres State Board of Medical Examiners 1903. Member New Ulm Turner Society.


OTTO W. HAGEN
Source: Memorial Record of SW Minnesota  - Transcribed by Gary Boomgaarden

Otto W. Hagen, the one-third owner and cashier of the State Bank of Sleepy Eye, was born in Silesia, Germany, on the river Oder, August 10, 1851. His parents, Jules and Sophia (Schmidt) Hagen, were both natives of Germany, being born near the place where our subject was born. His father, a blacksmith by trade, died when he (Otto) was four years of age. His mother
again married, and her second husband squandered all of their means. The grand father of our subject took part in the battle of Waterloo, and was with Napoleon on his famous retreat from  Moscow, Russia. He held the office of captain of a companY, and finally died in his native land. The father of our subject was compelled to support himself from the time he was able to work, and followed his trade in Germany until 1855, when he came to America and followed it here until 1870, most of the time in Dodge county, Wisconsin. He was the father of nine children, five sons and four daughters, all living. He and wife are now living at Sleepy Eye, coming here in 1891. He has been retired from business for a number of years. Otto W. was but four years of age when they came to America, and was educated in the schools of Wisconsin, attending Horicon high school. He first began business as a clerk in a drug and grocery store at Horicon, and continued there for a number of years.  Part of the time he was interested with his father in general merchandise at that place.  During the years 1873-4 He was engaged in the drug trade in Chicago as prescription clerk. He returned to Wisconsin in 1875, and remained there until April 15, 1877, when he came to Brown county, Minnesota, and for six years was employed by the Eagle Roller Mill Company of New Ulm, holding the position of secretary and cashier. In 1884 he resigned his position there and accepted one in the employ of F. H. Dyckman, as cashier of the State Bank of Sleepy Eye, of which Mr. Dyckman was then owner. In May, 1888, the bank was incorporated, and Mr. Hagen was given a one-third interest in the business. Mr. Dyckman. the president, removed to Orange, New Jersey, where he now resides. Mr.Hagen is also president of the State Bank of Morgan, Minnesota, which he assisted in organizing in November, 1893. The bank, under the firm name of F. H. Dyckman & Company, are agents for the Scottish-American Mortgage Company (Limited) of Edinburg, Scotland, and also other foreign companies. They do a business of over
$1,100,000 annually for foreign companies, and have over one-half a million dollars now loaned in Minnesota.  In 1881 Mr. Hagen married Miss Bertha Sentzke, who was born at New Ulm, Minnesota, September 4, 1861. Her father, Leopold Sentzke, was killed by the Indians in August, 1862, while defending the townof New Ulm against their attack. He was among the first settlers of Minnesota, coming here about 1858. His name appears on the monument erected to their memory at New Ulm. His wife is still living.  Mr. Hagen is the father of six children, four sons and two daughters, of whom one son, Walter C, is now living, and is attending school at Faribault, Minnesota, and one daughter, Martha O., is now at home.  Mr. Hagen is a member of Keystone Lodge, F. and A. M., and also of Albert Chapter, R. A. M. He has never taken any active part in politics, but is an ardent Republican, casting his first vote for General Grant.


Hugo O. Hanft
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Richard Ramos

HANFT Hugo O, St Paul. Res 69 The Buckingham, office Court House. Lawyer. Born Dec 16, 1871 in St Peter Minn, son of Oscar H and Anna (Engelke) Hanft. Educated in the common and high schools of New Ulm Minn; Germa-American Teachers’ Seminary Milwaukee Wis; law dept U of M, LL B 1896, LL M 1897. Prin of Peru Ill High School 4 years; asst county atty for Ramsey county 1900-1906; then elected judge municipal court. Enlisted in the 13th Minn Vol Inf as private and was discharged as bat adj after service in the Philippines.


Charles W. H. Heideman
Source: Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society (1912) Volume XIV; Page 317; transcribed by FoFG mz

Heideman, Charles W. H., b. in Algonquin, Ill., in 1857; came to Minnesota in 1876; settled in New Ulm, where he was railroad and express agent; was a representative in the legislature in 1889.


Christian J. B. Hirsch
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. (Shutter, Marion Daniel, 1853-ed.) Minneapolis, The Minneapolis Journal (1897) Submitted by Diana Heser Morse

Dr. Christian J. B. Hirsch, of New Ulm, Minnesota, is a native of Norway, one of those who came to America as a young man and cast in his lot with his adopted country, fighting her battles and participating in the beneficial results of the war. Dr. Hirsch was born on August 29, 1842. His father was a physician in the employ of the government. Until he was sixteen years of age he was tutored by a lieutenant of the army. He then tried the life of a sailor for two years, but gave that up and returned to Christiania where he attended the university for three years. In 1863 he left for the United States in a sailing vessel. He stopped at Chicago, and during the following year enlisted in Company D, Eighty-ninth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, joining his regiment in East Tennessee, where it was then stationed. His corps started with General Sherman of the "march to the sea," but after the battle of Atlanta was detached to pursue General Hood, who was threatening Nashville. After the battles of Nashville and Franklin they followed up the remnants of the Southern army until they scattered. They next went to East Tennessee to help in the final operations against Lee, and after the surrender of that famous fighter the regiment went to Texas, where Dr. Hirsch was finally mustered out of service in August, 1865. By this time the young Norwegian had been enough of war and of the fighting qualities of the Americans to convince him of their energetic character. He had also had an opportunity of seeing a good deal of the country. Upon being discharged from the service he went back to Chicago and entered Rush Medical College, from which he graduated with honor in 1868. A year previous he had been married to Miss Cammilla M. Thrane, a daughter of Marcus Thrane, the reader of the Liberal movement in Norway in 1849. With his young wife Dr. Hirsch settled in Dane County, Wisconsin, where he practiced medicine for nine years. He then moved to Baldwin, Wisconsin, where he lived for one year. He was afterwards in Zumbrota, Minnesota, for a year; in Lake Mills, Iowa, for two years, and Blue Earth City, Minnesota, for three years. In the latter place he was part owner in a drug store and lost all his books and instruments in a fire which burned the store and his office. It so happened that his insurance was small and covered only the drug stock. The next two years were spent in travel in North Dakota. Dr. Hirsch next settled in Black River Falls, Wisconsin, where he remained for four years, after which he moved to New Ulm, in 1890. Since establishing himself in New Ulm he has built up a large practice. Dr. and Mrs. Hirsch have had ten children, six girls and four boys, and have lost one child, a girl. The doctor belongs to the Brown County Medical Association and the Mississippi Valley Medical Association.


J.H.P. Hoy
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

J. H. P. Hoy, the genial and enterprising representative at Evan of the Sleepy Eye Milling Company, is a gentleman well worthy of personal mention in this biographical record. He has held his present position as superintendent and buyer for the above named company for eleven years, ever since their elevator was built at this place, and has bought all the grain handled there, amounting to between thirty and thirty five thousand bushels per year. The capacity of the elevator is eight thousand bushels.
Mr. Hoy is one of the early settlers of Minnesota. He came to this state twenty eight years ago, and during the past eighteen years has maintained his residence in Brown county. Not unlike many of the best citizens of the county, he looks to Denmark as the place of his birth and the home of his ancestors. He was born on Zealand Island, near the city of Copenhagen, in July, 1845, son of Peter Hoy, an honest and respected farmer and a worthy member of the Lutheran church. His venerable father is still living there, was born in 1818, and is now nearing the octogenarian line. The mother of our subject died at the age of forty eight years. She left two children, namely: Rasmus Jacobson, who was by her first husband, and was for years an employee of the Great Eastern Railroad Company at Calcutta, India; and J. H. P., whose name adorns this page.
J.H.P. Hoy was reared in Denmark, attended school there until he was fourteen years of age, recieving a good education in his native tongue, and after leaving school spent his time in farm work. In 1866 he crossed the Atlantic to America, and his first stopping place was at Racine, Wisconsin, whence he went over into Michigan, spending two years in the pine woods and in logging on the Muskegon river. The year 1868 marked his arrival in Minnesota. In this state his first location was at Rochester, and later he went to Mankato, at both which places he worked in a mill. From Mankato he came in 1876 to Brown county and purchased eighty acres of government land, which he subsequently sold, afterward buying the one hundred and sixty acres of land he now owns and occupies. This farm is a valuable and well improved one. The residence was built at a cost of one thousand five hundred dollars. The barn is thirty four by forty feet in dimensions, cost five hundred dollars, and the other improvements are all modern and first class. Here, Mr. Hoy carries on general farming and raises horses, cattle and hogs, a dairy being one of the important features of his farm.
Mr. Hoy was married at Rochester, Minnesota, at the age of twenty four years, to Miss Christena Holm, born in 1845 near Hadersberg, Schleswig, Germany, who came to Minnesota when a girl. They are the parents of two children, William and Henry. William was born in Rochester, Minnesota, in 1870, and is now in the creamery business at Sanborn, and Henry, born in Mankato, Minnesota, in 1873, is on the home farm. The latter married Miss Maggie Hoy, a native of Denmark, and they have two littl children, Ella and Arthur.
For years the subject of our sketch has taken an active part in the public affairs of his locality, filling most creditably a number of official positions. For ten years he was township assessor, also he served as justice of the peace and a member of the school board, and has been a delegate to both county and congressional conventions, he being an ardent supporter of the Republican cause. He belongs to the A.O.U.W., No. 67, and is a consistent member of the Lutheran church. Well informed, a pleasant converser and always approachable, Mr. J.H.P. Hoy has made many friends and receives that confidence and respect which are due him.


Edward H. Huebner
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. Published by The Minneapolis Journal (1897) submitted by Diana Heser Morse

E. H. Huebner, mayor of Winthrop, Sibley County, is one of the progressive young Republican politicians of central Minnesota, and a leading member of the bar in that part of the state. Mr. Huebner is of foreign descent, as his name indicates. His father, who is not now living, was Conrad Huebner, a native of Austria. His mother, who is also dead, was born in Switzerland. Mr. Huebner was born in Chicago, January 23, 1865. During the same year his parents moved to New Ulm, Minnesota, and Edward grew up there, attending the common schools of the town and later the State Normal School at Mankato, from which he graduated in 1886. Soon after he entered the office of John Lind, at New Ulm, and commenced reading law. He was admitted to practice in 1888. After a year with Mr. Lind he removed to Winthrop and opened an office of his own. He at once took an active part in the politics of the county, and in 1890 was nominated for the office of county attorney, on the Republican ticket. The had always been democratic by three hundred majority, but Mr. Huebner accepted the nomination and came within three votes of defeating his opponent. This was considered a remarkable run as the opposition candidate had two years before won over two other candidates by a plurality of nearly five hundred votes. In 1892 Mr. Huebner was again nominated and was elected, being the first Republican to be elected to the office of county attorney in Sibley County. He was re-elected in 1894, and in March of the same year was elected mayor of Winthrop. He declined re-nomination for the mayoralty in 1895, but was induced to accept in 1896 and was again elected. Among the secret societies to which Mr. Huebner belongs are the Knights of Pythias and the Odd Fellows. He occupies the office of Chancellor Commander of the local lodge of Knights of Pythias. He is a member of the Congregational church. Though now thirty-one years of age, Mr. Huebner is a bachelor.



John W. Kolbe
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

John W. Kolbe, as president of the Cobden Co-operative Creamery Company, of Cobden, is at the head of one of the prominent business enterprises of Brown county, Minnesota. This company was organized in the spring of 1895. a three thousand dollar plant was erected and put in operation, and soon the creamery was ranked as one of the best in this section of the country, a reputation it maintains. Mr. Kolbe was one of the prime movers in organizing the company, and it is largely due to his efficient management that the enterprise has attained its present success. For more than a quarter century he has been identified with the interests of this county. During the civil war he served under the stars and stripes and aided in the preservation of the union; and as a Union veteran, a pioneer settler and an enterprising citizen, his life history is of special interest in this connection, and is as follows.
John W. Kolbe is a native of Hessen, Germany, born June 7, 1841, a member of an industrious and respected family, his parents being Werner and Elizabeth (Krause) Kolbe, who came to the United States in 1865 and settled in Goodhue county, Minnesota; both are now deceased. Their family was composed of seven children, whose names are as follows: Henry, Morten, Dora, Julia, John W., Elizabeth and Rinehardt. Two of the sons, Henry and John W., were participants in the late war, and Henry was accidentally killed shortly after the war, his death occurring in Goodhue county in 1860, the result of an accident with a threshing machine.
The subject of our sketch was reared and educated in his native land, attended school until he was fourteen years old and then learned the trade of shoemaker, at which he worked in Germany until he was twenty. At that age he thought to better his condition by a location in the New World, and accordingly crossed the Atlantic to this country, embarking at Bremen and landing at New York after a stormy voyage of seven weeks. In New York city he obtained work at his trade on Water Street, where he remained one year, after which he came west to Goodhue county, Minnesota. At Redwing, Minnesota, in February, 1865, he enlisted in the First Minnesota Heavy Artillery, Company I, with which he went south, and was stationed at Chattanooga, Tennesee, until the close of the war. Having recieved an honorable discharge, he returned to his home in Goodhue county, Minnesota.
In 1869 he took claim to one hundred and sixty acres of government land where he now lives near Cobden, and to this tract made subsequent addition, until now his farm comprises three hundred and seventeen acres. For about seven years he lived in Sleepy Eye, where he dealt in farm machinery and grain, and during his residence at that place made the acquaintance of many of the early settlers of the county, Since locating on his farm he has devoted his energies to its cultivation and improvement, and with excellent results, his broad acres producing fine crops, his rich pastures dotted over with well kept stock, and his comfortable residence, substatial and commodious barn, modern windmill and fine grove all giving evidence of prosperity. An important feature on his farm is his dairy of twenty cows, the milk from which is taken to the Cobden creamery.
Mr. Kolbe was married in 1867, in Steele county, Minnesota to Miss Henryetta Leseman, whose life was happily blended with his for only a few years, their union being severed in 1873 by her untimely death. She left three children, John, Emma and Henryetta. The present Mrs. Kolbe was formerly Miss Thesse Mainzer. She is a daughter of John Mainzer, of this county, and is a woman whose admirable disposition and many excellent traits of character have endeared her to all who have the pleasure of her acquaintance. Their union has been blessed in the birth of nine children, their names being as follows; Rinehardt, Henry, Lydia, Hannah, Ed, Arthur, Ella, Eda and Benjamin W.
In this time of political divisions and excitements Mr. Kolbe remains firm in the support of the Republican party, with which he has always affiliated, and is regarded as one of the leaders of his party in this locality. He has served as chairman of the township board for years and also for years he has been a member of the school board. At various times he has served as delegate to conventions, ever performing faithfully and intelligently whatever duty devolved upon him. A veteran of the late war, he is, of course, identified with the G. A. R., his membership being in Wesley Greene Post, No. 71. Also he is a member of the A. O. U. W., No. 67. Religiously he is a Methodist, a steward in the church, and prominent and active in all good work.

Mrs. Amy Larrabee
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

Mrs. Amy Larrabee is one of the pioneer ladies of Brown county, and is still living on the old homestead where she took up her residence more than a quarter of a century ago. In the development of a community the pioneer women bear a part, which, though quieter, is none the less important than that of the husbands and fathers. In their home life they exercise an influence that does much in shaping the development of a community and promoting its substantial growth. Mrs. Larrabee, as one of the representatives of this class, is well deserving of mention in the history of southwestern Minnesota.
Mrs. Larrabee was born in Vermont, August 30, 1822, a daughter of William and Bettie (Clauson) Humphrey, the former a native of New Hampshire and the latter of Vermont. She was was reared and educated in the Green Mountain state, and in 1847 gave her hand in marraige to Alva S. Larrabee, who was born in New York, in 1816, on the grounds once occupied by the old Indian chief Tecumseh. With his parents he removed to Vermont, where he acquired a good academical education, and with his father learned the trade of shoemaking. After his marriage he removed to Winnebago county, Wisconsin, and located on a farm, which he cultivated in connection with the business of tanning. In 1861 he removed to Albert Lea, Minnesota, where he remained until 1864, when he came with his family to Brown county and purchased a farm on the bank of the Cottonwood river, comprising two hundred acres of choice land. Lying along the river and skirted with a good forest, it makes a most desirable stock farm. Mr. Larrabee successfully carried on general farming and stock raising up to within a short time of his death, which occurred in October, 1892. He was then in his seventy seventh year.
The characteristics of Mr. Larrabee were such as would commend him to the respect and confidence of all. He was devoted to his family and home, and was ever true to the duties of citizenship and public life. He held the offices of justice of the peace, township clerk and school director, and was ever faithful to the trust reposed in him. In politics he was a stanch (sic) Republican, and took an active interest in the success of his party.
Mr. Larrabee was a son of Benjamin Larrabee and connected with an old American family that was founded in America by three brothers, natives of France. He was also an own cousin of ex-Governor Larrabee, of Iowa. By his marriage to Amy Humphrey six children were born; Eric A., a farmer; Edward H., who keeps the old homestead; A. A., manager of the agricultural implement store of Klossner & Mueller, of Sleepy Eye; Edna, wife of L. R. Richardson, of Selma, Cottonwood county, Minnesota; Bert H., a pharmacist of Sleepy Eye; and Laura D., deceased. Mrs. Larrabee has also twenty grandchildren. She is still well preserved both mentally and physically, and is now living in her comfortable home, one of the substantial residences of the township, surrounded by her children and many friends.


J.P. Madsen
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota" Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

J. P. Madsen, who resides on section 16, Prairieville township, Brown county, Minnesota, is regarded as one of the best farmers in the county and is the owner of one of the finest farms within its borders. Although now only in the prime of life, he is entitled to be ranked with the old settlers of the township, he having accompanied his parents here in 1868, when a boy.

Like many of the prominent and enterprising men of Brown county, Mr. Madsen was born in Denmark, not far from the city of Copenhagen, April 13,1856. His father, Madsen Jensen, was born in the same place, and in 1868 emigrated with his family to America, settling in the vicinity where our subject now lives and being among the first to locate here. He, however, was not destined to enjoy his new home for long, for in August of that same year he was called to his home above, leaving in this then thinly settled district his widow and four children, namely; Ellen Mary, J.P., Carrie Maria and Nels C. The last named is now a prominent business man of Lake Prestion, South Dakota. The widowed mother, whose maiden name was Margaret Nelson, lived to the ripe old age of ninety three years, dying in 1895. At the time of her death she was one of the oldest residents of Brown county.

J.P. Madsen was a boy of twelve years when he arrived in Minnesota, and with the other members of the family he passed through all the hard times incident to the grasshopper siege and the hailstorms and cyclones which discouraged not a few of the settlers through this part of the state. His early advantages for an education were indedd limited, but through home study, close observation and actual contact with the world he acquired a broad fund of useful information, and is today one of the most intelligent and well informed men of his locality; and in his farming operations and business ventures he has been uniformly successful. He located on his present farm in 1879. Here he has two hundred and seventy two acres of choice land, highly cultivated and with excellent improvements. His residence, the finest one in the township was erected at a cost of two thousand three hundred dollars, is beautifully located on a natural building site, with a fine grove near by, and is furnished and kept up in a manner that at once suggests good taste as well as prosperity. His barn is twenty six by fifty feet in dimensions, built at a cost of five hundred and fifty dollars, and he also has substatial and convienient granary, stables and other buildings, the whole farm being a model one in every respect.

Mr. Madsen married Miss Carrie Maria Christiansen, a native of Denmark and a daughter of Henry Christiansen. Their happy union has been blessed in the birth of the following named children: Jerry E., Adolph, Viola Eleanor, Clifford Victor, and an infant son named Stanley A.

Politically, Mr. Madsen is thoroughly in harmony with the Republican party in the principles it advocates. He is a member of the Lutheran church and the A. O. U. W., and as a neighbor and a citizen he is held in high repute by his fellows.


John H. Movius
Source: Compendium of History and Biography of North Dakota, Publ. 1900. Transcribed by Renae Capitanio

JOHN H. MOVIUS, the efficient postmaster of Lidgerwood, and one of the prominent business men of that locality, is a young man of more than ordinary business ability, and is highly esteemed in the city where he makes his home. He was born in Golnow, Germany, June 24, 1860, and has been a resident of Lidgerwood, Richland county, many years. In connection with this sketch will be found a portrait of Mr. Movius.

The father of our subject, Dr. J. William Movius, was a native of Germany, and died in New Ulm, Minnesota, October 13, 1877, aged fifty-six years. The mother of our subject bore the maiden name of Henrietta Bratz, and was also a native of Germany. Eleven children, six sons and five daughters, were born to this worthy couple, of whom our subject was the youngest son.
John H. Movius came to America with his parents in May 1867, and was reared at Big Stone City, South Dakota, where he remained until locating in Lidgerwood, Richland county. He was employed by his two older brothers, Albert W. and Will-R., in the implement business at Big Stone for two years, after which in company with his brother, Emil A., he purchased the business at Big Stone, which they conducted until their removal to Lidgerwood, in March, 1887. They now conduct an extensive business and enjoy an ever-increasing patronage. Mr. Movius is also interested in the Lidgerwood Mill Company, Movius Elevator Company, Movius Lumber Company, and cashier of Movius State Bank.

Our subject was married in Lidgerwood, January 1, 1895, to Miss Margaret W. Wagner, a native of' Ontario. Three children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Movius as follows: Eva H., Charles E. and Gretchen H. Mr. Movius is a member of the Masonic fraternity, Ancient Order of United Workmen, Modern Woodmen of America, and Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and has been grand herald of the state lodge in the last named order. He was appointed postmaster of Lidgerwood, January 18, 1898, and assumed the office March 1, since which time the office has been raised from the fourth to the third class. He is a man of the highest integrity and well merits his success.


Martin Penning
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

Martin Penning, one of the leading and successful farmers and stock raisers of Brown county was born in the province of Lunenburg, Germany, September 29, 1839, and is a son of Mathias and Anna (Hoffman) Penning. His father sailed, in 1846, with his family for the United States, reaching New York after a voyage of forty six days. He at once resumed his westward journey by land and at length reached Ozaukee county, Wisconsin, where he secured a tract of land and carried on farming until 1868, although he was primarily a blacksmith by trade. In that year he came to Brown county, Minnesota, where he purchased a farm, which he successfully operated until his death in October, 1889, in the eighty fifth year of his age. His wife survived him some time and passed away April 7, 1896, in her eighty seventh year. They were the parents of ten children, five of whom are now living, namely; John P., Martin and Peter, all of whom are farmers of Brown county; John J., who resides in Sleepy Eye; and Kate, widow of August Steffan.
Mr. Penning of this sketch, accompanied his parents to America and in Wisconsin attended school. He afterward went to Sangamon county, Illinois, where he worked on a farm and attended school. Afterward he returned to Wisconsin, and in 1862 enlisted in Company C, Thirty fourth Wisconsin Infantry, under Captain G.J. Wilmot. The regiment went to Columbus, Kentucky, and there Mr. Penning was attached to a heavy artillery, being in charge of one of the guns. He afterward did guard duty in Memphis, Tennessee, for three months, and in August, 1863, he was honorably discharged.
Returning to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Mr. Penning then engaged in a wholesale liquor store until the summer of 1865, when he came to Brown county, Minnesota, and with the capital he had aquired through his own industry purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land from the government. This was then an undeveloped region with few settlements and with but little prospect of rapid improvement, but in true pioneer style he began life in the west. His home was a hewed log cabin, sixteen by twenty six feet, in which he lived for twenty years. Earnestly he labored to get a start and soon paid off the indebtedness on his farm, but the grasshoppers afterward took all of his crops and the outlook seemed very discouraging. He did not lose heart, however, but with renewed energy began the task of securing for himself a good home and comfortable living. In addition to general farming, he embarked in stock raising, making a specialty of hogs and cattle, and from this enterprise he realized a handsome profit. He has now a landed estate of two hundred and seventy acres in a high state of cultivation.
Mr. Penning has been ably assisted by his estimable wife, who has indeed proved to him a help meet. He was married in 1867, to Christina, daughter of Anton and Maria (Hepple) Schmuker, of Brown county. She was born in Germany, was educated in he native tongue but after coming to America, at the age of twenty one years, mastered the English language and is an intelligent and cultured lady. The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Penning was blessed with four children, but the sons, Robert and Oscar, are both deceased. The daughters are Rosa, wife of Frank Schnobrich, of New Ulm; and Emma M., at home.
In 1884 Mr. Penning erected on his farm an excellent barn, thirty four by sixty feet, with a good stone foundation and a seven foot basement. It is the best barn in the township and attests the enterprise and progressive spirit of the owner. In 1886 he erected a handsome two story residence of modern style and the home is tastefully furnished. The farm in its appointments is up to date in every particular. He has made a specialty of the cultivation of plums and small fruit, and has one of the finest plum orchards in southwestern Minnesota, containing over thirty varieties. He is recognized as one of the leading horticulturists in the state, is a member of the State Horticulture Society, and at its annual meetings his opinions, culled from practical experience, are eagerly welcomed. He follows the most progressive methods in all departments of his work and is well numbered among the leading farmers of his county.
Mr. Penning is a member of Keystone Lodge, No. 94, F. & A. M., of New Ulm, and of Wesley Green Post, No. 71, G. A. R. He is a broad minded man, public spirited, and is true to all the duties of life as he was to his country in the hour of peril when he followed the stars and stripes on southern battle fields.


Albert Pfaender
Source: Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society (1912) Volume XIV; Page 596; transcribed by FoFG mz

Pfaender, Albert, lawyer, b. in New Ulm, Minn., Sept. 9, 1873, and has resided there; was graduated at the University of Minnesota, 1897, and later studied in its law department till 1899; a representative in the state legislature since 1909.


William Pfaender
Progressive men of Minnesota. Published by The Minneapolis Journal, 1897 – transcribed by AJ 

The name given above is that of one of the founders of New Ulm. William Pfaender is a native of the city of Heilbronn, in Germany, where he was born July 6, 1826. His father was Jacob Pfaender, a cooper by trade. He served in the Light Artillery form 1806 to 1812, during the Napoleonic wars. William's mother's maiden name was Johanna Kuentzel. The ancestry of both parents was German, and the antecedents were plain people of moderate circumstances. William attended the common schools of his native town, but the limited resources of his parents did not permit of his attending any higher schools or colleges. He arrived in New York in the spring of 1848, proceeding from that city to Cincinnati, where in 1855 he became interested in the colonization society and came to Minnesota in the spring of 1856 as one of the committee selected to choose a site for the headquarters of the German Land Association, which consisted mostly of members of the North American Turnerbund. In September, 1856, New Ulm was settled and Mr. Pfaender was made the manager of the German Land Association, and afterwards president of the same for several years. But, not to anticipate too rapidly: After leaving school at the age of fourteen years, William was apprenticed in a mercantile house, where he spent four years and served as a salaried clerk in the city of Ulm. He left for America in the spring of 1848 on account of political trouble, having been suspected of revolutionary connections. He had earned a moderate salary, but being conscripted into military service he sacrificed nearly all of his savings to get release. Ready to do almost anything he secured employment in the factory of the Urban Safe Company at Cincinnati, at the rate of $2 a week and board. Afterwards he served as hotel waiter, and in 1849 was employed as a bookkeeper in the printing establishment of the German Republican, a daily and weekly Whig paper, where he remained, with few interruptions, until he removed to Minnesota. At New Ulm he conducted the affairs of the German Land Association, and, taking charge of the postoffice, served as postmaster and a register of deeds until he enlisted in September, 1861. Mr. Pfaender served in the Union army for four years. He enlisted as a private in the First Minnesota Battery, was elected first lieutenant at the organization of the same, and during the battle of Shiloh, April 6 and 7, 1862, assumed command of the battery shortly after the commencement of the action, the captain having been seriously wounded. Mr. Pfaender remained in command during the siege and subsequent occupancy of Corinth, Mississippi, until August 26, 1862, when, on receiving the news of the destruction of New Ulm by the Sioux Indians, he was given an order by General Grant to proceed to St. Paul on the recruiting service. He was, however, immediately put on the detached service at St. Peter and Fort Ridgely, and at the latter post acted as quartermaster and commissary until the First Regiment Minnesota Mounted Rangers was organized. Mr. Pfaender was commissioned as lieutenant colonel of the regiment, and during the summer of 1863 remained in command of the cavalry serving on the frontier. At the expiration of the term of service of the regiment he went into the Second Regiment Minnesota Cavalry, with the same rank, assuming command of the second sub district of Minnesota, occupying all the frontier posts from Alexandria to the Iowa state line, with headquarters at Fort Ridgely, and was mustered out with the regiment on December 7, 1865. After returning from service in the army Mr. Pfaender went back to his farm. In 1870 he established a lumber yard at New Ulm, and in company with other parties built a planning mill and sash factory. From the time of the organization of the state Mr. Pfaender had become interested in politics. His affiliations were with the Republican party, and he was elected to the legislature of 1859 and 1860; was then made register of deeds of Brown county; was one of the first four presidential electors of Minnesota, in 1860, casting the vote of the state for Abraham Lincoln. In 1870, 1871 and 1872 he served as a member of the state senate, and in 1875 was elected state treasurer, occupying that position two terms. On his election as state treasurer Mr. Pfaender sold out his interest in the lumber business and removed with his family to St. Paul. He returned to New Ulm in 1880 and engaged in the real estate and insurance business, in which he is still engaged, and at the same time running his farm. He has always taken an active interest in the organization of societies for physical and mental development, forming the North American Turnerbund, of which he is president for the district of Minnesota. He is a member of the board of trade and the commercial union of New Ulm. He was twice mayor of the city and served several times as member of the city council. Mr. Pfaender was married at Cincinnati, December 7, 1851, to Catherine Pfau. They have had fifteen children, of whom ten are living, viz: William Pfaender, Jr., who is engaged in business with his father; Kate (Mrs. Albrecht, Wabasha street St. Paul); Louise Stamm, wife of Dr. G. Stamm; Josephine Pfaender, Frederick Pfaender, register of deeds in Brown county; Amelia, wife of Dr. Fritsche; Emma, wife of Charles Hauser, of the Hauser Malting Company, St. Paul; Minnie Pfaender, Herman Pfaender, manager of his father's farm, and Albert Pfaender, a student at the state university.


Nelse C. Rukke
Source: Compendium of History and Biography of
North Dakota, Publ. 1900. Transcribed by Sally Masteller

NELSE C. RUKKE belongs to that class of enterprising and intelligent farmers whose homes are places of social and mental comfort, and whose work as developers of the country is a credit alike to themselves and the community. His estate is in Pilot Mound township, and his pleasant residence is situated in a picturesque spot on the banks of the Sheyenne river, in section 1. He was the first settler of that township, and is widely known and highly esteemed.
Our subject was born in
Norway, December 4, 1840, and was the seventh in a family of twelve children, six sons, and six daughters, born to Christian and Ture (Syverson) Rukke, both of whom died in Minnesota. A brother of our subject, Sever, was a member of the Sixth Minnesota Volunteer Infantry during the Civil war, and died in camp at Helena, Arkansas.
Mr. Rukke came to America with his parents when three years of age, and the family located on a farm in Rock county, Wisconsin, where he received his first educational training, and in 1857 removed with his parents to Brown county, Minnesota, and there grew to manhood and assisted his father on the farm until the breaking out of the Civil war. He enlisted in Company E., Second Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, at
St. Peter, Minnesota, in April, 1861, and the regiment was consigned to the Fourteenth Army Corps, under command of General George Thomas. Mr. Rukke served four years, and was wounded at the storming of Missionary Ridge, November 24, 1863, and in consequence was confined in the hospital at Evansville, Indiana, six months. He participated in the battles of Mill Spring, Kentucky; Corinth, Mississippi; Shiloh; Perryville, Kentucky; Chickamauga, Chattanooga and others, and marched three months with Sherman from Dalton to Atlanta.
after his return from the war Mr. Rukke purchased a half-section of railroad land near his father s farm in Minnesota, and there engaged in farming for some years. He was elected county treasurer of Brown county,
Minnesota, in 1870, and was elected in the same capacity three times, and after leaving that office he removed to St. Paul, where he became traveling representative for the Walter A. Woods Harvesting Machine Company, under Fuller & Johnson, general agents for the Northwest. He remained with them about six years, and then went to North Dakota and secured a position with Bayam & Hoiland, at Mayville. He was in their employ one year, and in 1884, in company with Mr. Hoiland, engaged in the machine business at Cooperstown, and were the pioneers in that line. The following year our subject disposed of his interests to Knute Thompson & Finley, and he removed to his farm, where his family had resided since locating in the state. He has continued farming since, and is now the owner of five quarter-sections of well-improved land, all of which is located in Griggs county.
Our subject was married, in 1868, to Miss Guro Odegard, a native of
Norway, who was born May 9, 1850, and was a daughter of Thore and Guro Odegard. Mrs. Rukke s father now resides in Cooperstown, North Dakota, and the mother died in that city in 1896, aged seventy-six years. Eight children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Rukke, as follows: Christian W. died at the age of five years; Agnes T.; Christian W.; Elma died at the age of twelve years; Guy V.; Seward died at the age of three years; Nellie G. and Elma S. Mr. Rukke is prominent in public affairs in his township and county, and served on the first board of county commissioners after the county was organized, and has been chairman of the board of supervisors of his township for the past six years. He is a member of Rockwell Post, G. A. R., at Cooperstown, North Dakota. Politically he is a Republican, and stands firmly for the principles of his party.


John Baptist Schmid
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. Published by The Minneapolis Journal (1897) submitted by Diana Heser Morse

Mr. Schmid, as his name indicates, is of German origin on his father's side, and on his mother's side of French extraction. The Schmid family to which the subject of this sketch belongs emigrated from Hungary to Germany in the Sixteenth century, where they engaged in manufacturing glass. On his mother's side Mr. Schmid is of Bohemian descent. His father, Clement Schmid, is a farmer living at Mulligan, Brown County, Minnesota, having come to this country from Bavaria, Germany, in 1868. His mother's maiden name was Anna Leibel. John Baptist was born February 27, 1852, in Stadlern, Upper Palatine, Bavaria, Germany. He received a common school education. Coming to this country with his parents in 1868, he settled on a farm in Brown Country, Minnesota, in the town of Siegel. By profession Mr. Schmid was a musician, and the first dollar he ever earned was in that vocation. For some years he worked in the breweries in New Ulm, Minnesota. He then took a homestead in the town of Mulligan, Brown County, and proceeded to improve it. In 1878 he engaged in the hotel business at Sleepy Eye, and in 1882 established a general merchandise store in the same city, continuing in the same line of business until January 1, 1885, when he was nominated by the Democrats and elected sheriff of Brown County. He served in the office for three terms, after which, in 1890, he went into partnership with A. C. Ochs, of New Ulm, purchasing the Springfield roller mill. In 1893 this partnership was dissolved, the mill having been sold and Mr. Schmid engaged in the elevator business and also deals in coal and other articles. To this business he gives his whole attention. He also owns and operates three large farms. He was also nominated for state senator in 1894, but failed of election by a small majority. He served for five years in the village council in Springfield, and has been a member of the school board for the last five years, acting as its treasurer. He is a member of several different Masonic bodies, was a charter member of the Springfield lodge of Odd Fellows, No. 225, serving for two terms as Noble Grand. In 1895 he was the representative of the I. O. O. F. to the grand lodge. He is also a member of O. D. H. S., and was president of the New Ulm lodge. He is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. Mr. Schmid is connected with the Catholic church. He was married in New Ulm in 1872 to Anna Mary Adams, and has ten children living. His eldest son John R. is at present and has been for the past three years, assistant cashier of the State Bank of Springfield. The other living children are Emma, Louise, Bertha, Edward, Adolph, Victoria, Benjamin, Constance and Elmer.


F.C. Schutt,
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota (Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

F. C. Schutt, Cobden Minnesota, is an all around business man and farmer, prominently identified with the best interests of his locality, and enjoys the confidence and good will of all. He is probably best known as the superintendent, manager and buyer at Cobden for the Sleepy Eye Milling Company, which trusted position he has filled during the past ten years. His identity with the county covers a period of seventeen years.

Like many of the prominent and influential men of Brown county, Mr. Schutt is of European birth. It was in Mecklenburg, Germany, in the year 1840, that he first saw the light of day, and there he was reared and educated, attending school until he was fifteen. At twenty one he bade farewell to the scenes of his childhood and his native land, and from Hamburg set sail for America, landing in due time at New York city. From New York he immediately came west to Milwaukee, where, unfortunately, he was soon afterward taken sick, and for a year was unable to work. Upon his recovery he went to Chicago, and at Maywood, a suburb of that city, he secured the position of superintendent and manager of the work of laying out new streets, ditching, grading, etc., which occupied his attention for the next three years. Later he was for a time shipping clerk for the Waterbury Clock Company of Chicago, which position he held until the great fire of 1871. He was an eyewitness to that great conflagration. After the fire he returned to Maywood and near that place became interested in agricultural pursuits. Disposing of his interests there, he came to Minnesota and settled at Golden Gate, Brown county, and in 1884 moved from that place to his present location near Cobden, where he has a valuable farm of one hundred and sixty acres, one of the most desirable in the township. Here he has good buildings, a nice grove, and everything conveniently arranged for carrying on agricultural pursuits successfully.

Durin his ten years experience in the grain business as the representative of this well known firm, Mr. Schutt has annually handled no less than fifty thousand bushels of grain, and his dealings have brought him in contact with most of the people of this part of Brown county. Another important enterprise with which he is connected is the Cobden Co-operative Creamery Company, which he helped to organize and of which he is the efficient secretary, J.W. Kolbe being president. This creamery is one of the best in the county. The plant cost three thousand dollars, and the past year the company did a twelve thousand dollar business.

Mr. Schutt's political affiliations are with the Republican party. He has always taken an active and enthusiastic interest in party affairs, is regarded as one of the wheel horses of his party in this part of the county, and has been honored by his fellow citizens with election to local office. For several years he has been township clerk, and he has also served for years as a member of the school board, his public service like his private business affairs recieving prompt and careful attention. Religiously, he is identified with the Evangelical Association.

Mr. Schutt was married in Maywood, Illinois to Miss Minnie Tosch, an amiable and intelligent lady and a member of a good family. They have ten children, five sons and five daughters, viz.: Anna, Theodore, Herman, Martha, Charlotte, Ed, Lizzie, Adolph, Hubert and Clara; also they have two children deceased.


William Watkins Smith
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. Published by The Minneapolis Journal (1897) submitted by Diana Heser Morse

Among the substantial financial institutions in the southwestern part of the state is the banking house of Griffith & Smith at Sleepy Eye. W. W. Smith, of this firm, is the son of William A. Smith, who removed from Goshen, Orange County, New York, to Oakfield, Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin, in 1846, where he acquired a large farm, some six hundred acres, and amassed a handsome fortune as a farmer. Mr. W. A. Smith was active in promoting the cause of education and provided amply for his own children in this respect. His wife was Miss Martha Strong Watkins, a native of Hamptonburgh, New York, a lady of superior culture and many Christian graces. They were married in 1846, and reared a family of five children, of whom William was the youngest. Mrs. Smith's ancestors were of English and Scotch descent and came to this country during the Colonial days. Mr. Smith's ancestors were Colonial settlers, and his father won distinction in the War of 1812. The subject of this sketch was born February 24, 1857, at Oakfield, Wisconsin. He remained on the farm, attending the country school in winter, until the fall of 1876, when he entered Lawrence University, at Appleton, Wisconsin. He graduated there in June, 1881, in the Latin Scientific course, with the degree of B. S. On the fifth of the following July he set out for Canton, South Dakota, where he had secured a position in what is now the First National Bank of that city. He remained there one year, when he became persuaded that a similarly conducted institution on his own account would be more to his advantage, and he formed a partnership with Clarence D. Griffith, of Appleton, Wisconsin, with whom he proceeded to Sleepy Eye, where they established a banking business under the name of the Merchants Bank. This enterprise was inaugurated August 1, 1882, and has been in operation without change of partnership ever since. Mr. Smith has had quite a successful business career, but has not forgotten that the first dollar he ever earned was received for hoeing corn while a boy, for a neighbor. He is a Republican in politics, though he never has taken a very active part in party affairs. He has been a member of the local school board for twelve years, and treasurer of that body for six years. He was also complimented by Governor Nelson with an appointment on his staff with the title of major. He is a member of the I. O. O. F. and the Knights of Pythias. He is not a member of any church, but is an attendant and supporter of the Congregational church, of Sleepy Eye. He was married September 29, 1885, at Kasson, Minnesota, to Miss Ada Cogswell Bunker, youngest daughter of John E. Bunker. They have two children, Arthur Bunker and William Watkins, Jr. Mr. Smith's business interests are not confined to Sleepy Eye, but he is interested in banking institutions at Echo and Montevideo.


George Washington Somerville
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. Published by The Minneapolis Journal (1897) submitted by Diana Heser Morse

One of the most prominent member of the legal profession in Southern Minnesota is George Washington Somerville, of Sleepy Eye, Brown County, Minnesota. Mr. Somerville was born in Ripley county, Indiana, June 3, 1885; son of William and Rachel (Cunningham) Somerville. On his father's side he is of Irish descent, his grandfather having been born in the north of Ireland, emigrating to this country when but nineteen years of age. William Somerville was born in Pennsylvania, but lived in Indiana from boyhood until his removal to this state in 1860, when George W. was but five years of age. He settled on a farm in Viola township, Olmsted County, where he still resides, and is one of the most prosperous agriculturists in that fertile section of the North Star state. He is also prominent as a horticulturist, having early begun to ornament his farm with evergreens, to which he added the useful fruit varieties. He now has one of the best orchards in the state of Minnesota. He has been a prominent member of horticultural societies, and was for several years a lecturer on horticulture with the State Farmers' Institute, being recognized as one of the most competent authorities on the subject in this state. He was also honored by the people of his neighborhood by being elected to the lower house of the legislature in 1872; he has also held several town offices. George Washington Somerville received his elementary education in the district school of his neighborhood, which he attended only three months out of the year, the balance of the time working on his father's farm. In his sixteenth and seventeenth years he attended the village school at Eyota, in the same county. In 1872 his family moved to Rochester, this state, where George entered the high school, from which he graduated in 1876. Then, having a predilection for the profession of law, he pursued it studies during the following year in the office of H. C. Butler, of that city. In 1878 he entered the law department of the University of Michigan, graduating the year following. Immediately after his graduation he returned to Minnesota and located at Sleepy Eye, where he began the practice of his profession. He has remained at this place ever since and built up an extensive practice. His popularity is attested by the fact that he was renominated three times to the office of county attorney of Brown County, declining a fourth nomination, serving in this office from 1882 to 1888. He has also been city attorney of Sleepy Eye for a number of year and still holds that position. In politic she has always been a Republican, and is a leader in the counsels of his party. He has attended a number of state Republican conventions as a delegate, and is a member of the executive committee of the Republican State League. He is a Mason and a Knights Templar, a member of Zuhrah Temple, Mystic Shrine, and is also a Odd Fellow. November 21, 1881, he was married to Mary Fuller, of Rochester, Minnesota. Mr. and Mr. Somerville have four children, Madge, Saxe, Caroline and W. Wayne.


Hans P. Tharkeldsen.
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota (Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

In the subject of this review is found another one of the honored and prospered farmers of Brown county, Minnesota, who dates his birth in Denmark and owes his present success to his own honest toil and good management. Since 1870 he has resided at his present location on section 16, Prairieville township, the little town of Evan being his post office address.

Mr. Tharkeldsen was born in the province of Schleswig, Denmark, in the year 1843, the son of poor, honest and industrious parents, and one of a family of three children. He attended school in the old country until he was fourteen, recieving a fair education in his native language, and was employed in farm work there until he was twenty one. At that time he sailed from Hambur for America and was thirteen weeks in accomplishing the voyage to New York. The heavy storms impeded and changed the course of the vessel, which had to retrace its way in order to get into the tradewind, and of the three hundred and thirty three passengers on board thirty five died and were buried at sea. From New York the subject of our sketch directed his course westward to Racine, Wisconsin, where he worked on a farm eight months. Next he went to Iowa and secured employment on the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad, where another eight months were spent. From Iowa he went up into the pine regions of Michigan, on the Muskegon river, and in 1870 came from there to his present location in Brown county, Minnesota. Here he secured eighty acres of government land, with a small house on it, fourteen by eighteen feet in dimensions, and to his original holdings has since added until now he is the owner of a fine farm of two hundred acres of choice land, all well improved. The residence he now occupies he built in 1888, at a cost of one thousand dollars, its location being on a gentle elevation and with a fine grove near by. Also he has a good barn and other farm buildings. He carries on general farming, and, like many of the enterprising men of this section of the country, is interested in the dairy business. Also he is a large stock holder in the Evan Co-operative Creamery and is president of the company, this being and enterprise highly beneficial to the locality.

Mr. Tharkeldsen has been twice married. His first wife was before marriage Miss Stine Jensen, and by her had four children, two of whom are living, Mary and Ida, both accomplished and refined young ladies. Miss Mary is a graduate of the Mankato Normal College, with the class of 1893, and has for several years been a popular and successful teacher, while Miss Ida has had a musical training and is proficient in her art. Their mother died in 1880. The present Mrs. Tharkeldsen was formerly Miss May Anna Saransen, she, too, being a native of Denmark.

In local affairs and especially in educational matters, Mr. Tharkeldsen has always shown a commendable interest, freely giving his support to all measures and movements which he believes are intended for the welfare of his community. In his political views he is independent, and religiously he is a consistent member of the Lutheran church. In the prime of life, of unbounded generosity and always frank and cordial, he is very popular, having many friends and acquaintances.


H.L. Tosch
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota -Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

H. L. Tosch, of Cobden, Minnesota, is the superintendent and buyer at this place for the Eagle Roller Mills Elevator Company, of New Ulm, and ably represents their business. He was appointed to this position in April, 1895. The Eagle Roller Mills Company is one of the most substatial and enterprising firms in Brown county, its business at Cobden alone reaching no less than fifty thousand dollars per annum, much of its success here being due, no doubt, to the efficiency of Mr. Tosch, whose valued service is recognized and highly appreciated by the firm.

Mr. Tosch has resided at his present location since 1883. He is a native of Prussia, born May 21, 1850, and a son of Fritz and Henrietta (Raimus) Tosch. His mother died in Minnesota. In their family were six children, he being the second born, and as his father was a farmer, he was reared to agricultural pursuits. Until he was fourteen he attended the common schools of his native land, acquiring a fair education, and while yet in his teens emigrated to America, sailing from Hamburg and landing at New York city after a stormy voyage of seven weeks. From New York he came west to Illinois and settled at Norwood Park, near Chicago, in 1866, where he was engaged in farming until 1883, when he came to Minnesota and bought a farm near Cobden, five miles west of Sleepy Eye. Here he owns on hundred and fifty acres of good land, nicely improved with comfortable, residence, substantial barn, modern windmill, grove, etc.; and in connection with his farming operations he keeps a dairy of twelve to fifteen cows, and is a stockholder in the Cobden Creamery Company.

Mr. Tosch was married at the age of twenty two years, at Norwood Park, Illinois, to Miss Minnie Schroder, a member of a good family, and, like himself, of European birth. They have had four children, three of whom are living, William, Augusta, and Martha. Their daughter Amelia, a charming and accomplished young lady, died at the age of nineteen years. She was a favorite among her young friends and in the home circle and her early death was a source of great sorrow to all who knew her.

During his residence in Brown county Mr. Tosch has been honored with election to township office, and has rendered acceptable service in the same. His political affiliations from the time he became a voter have been with the Republican party. In religious matters he is prominent and active, being identified with the Evangelical Association and an official in its local organization. Also he is president of the Missionary Society connected with this church here. Genial and courteous in manner, and with the happy faculty of ingratiating himself with all with whom he comes in contact, he has made and retains hosts of friends both in his business dealings and otherwise.


M.C. Tower
Source: Memorial Record of S.W. Minnesota - Submitted by Gary Boomgaarden

Riverdale Farm, in Eden township, Brown county, Minnesota, is one of the most delightful rural places in this county, and its propietor, Mr. M.C. Tower, is one of Brown county's best known and most highly respected citizens.
Mr. Tower is a native of the Empire state. He was born in Wyoming county, New York, March 27, 1841, the son of English parents who came to America in early life. Bela Tower, his father, was born in Manchester, England, and was just entering manhood when he made the Atlantic voyage and sought a home in the New World, his location being in New York. In Wyoming county, that state, he was united in marriage to Miss Sarah Woodard, like himself, a native of Manchester. some years after their marriage they removed to Erie county, where they passed the rest of their lives and died. He lived to the advanced age of eighty two years and she was seventy six at the time of death. Both were devoted Christians, differing somewhat, however, in their creeds, he having been a Presbyterian and a deacon in the church for many years, and she a consistent Methodist. To them were born nine children, five sons, and four daughters, namely: Alonzo N., Warren J., Merritt X., George M., Alerick W., Phoebe, Amerette, Emily and Savilla.
His father was a farmer, the subject of our sketch was reared to farm life in his native state, recieving his education in the common schools and at home being surrounded by a refined and Christian influence, honesty and industry being instilled in him in his boyhood days. Thus he grew up, and on reaching manhood was well equipped for the battle of life. He was married in Strykersville, Wyoming county, New York, and in 1864, to Miss Maryetta Curtiss, an amiable and accomplished lady, and previous to her marriage a teacher in the schools of Wyoming county. She is an only child of Freeborn H. and Laura (Cutler) Curtiss, both natives of New York, the former of Scotch-English descent and the latter of English. Mr. and Mrs. Curtiss are now residents of North Java, New York.
About the time the civil war closed Mr. Tower was seized with a desire to "go west" and in 1865 we find him locating in Wabasha county, Minnesota, where he made his home one year, at the end of that time coming farther west and settling in Redwood county, across the county line from his present location, where he improved a good farm. In 1873 he bought the farm upon which he now lives, moved here in 1875, and has since maintained his residence here, sparing neither time nor means in the improvement of his land and the beautifying of his home. This farm comprises four hundred and forty acres of choice land and is utilized chiefly as a stock farm, its broad, rich pastures rivaling the bluegrass regions of Kentucky. for years Mr. Tower has made a specialty of fine stock and is at present directing his attention more particularly to dairy cattle of the best breeds, having expended a large amount of money in securing his stock. Formerly he was largely interested in breeding improved Clydesdale horses. His long experience in the stock business and the close attention he has given it have made hime an authority on the subject, and he is recognized as such throughout the county, his opinion and advice always being valued by others in this line of business. The residence at Riverdale Farm is a commodious two story building, beautifully situated on a natural building site, with attractive surroundings, and with furnishings the bespeak both the culture and refinement as well as the wealth of the owner and his family. In his farming and stock operations Mr. Tower is ably assisted by his son Fred, who is a partner in the firm and has been trained to the business and is familiar with it in its every detail.
Mr. Tower has been a Republican until recently, when he espoused the principles adopted by the Populists and is now in favor of reform. He has frequently been urged to accept local office, but has always declined the honor, his own private affairs demanding his whole time and attention. Both he and his wife are members of the Presbyterian church.


J. W. B. Wellcome Sr.
Source: Progressive Men of Minnesota, (Shutter, Marion Daniel, 1853–ed.) Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Journal (1897) transcribed by Vicki Bryan

J. W. B. Wellcome, Sr., of Sleepy Eye, Minnesota, has practiced the profession of medicine for many years in this state. He was born in New Portland, Maine, on June 4, 1S25. Hs father, Timothy Wellcome, was of German-English descent. He was liberally educated, and was a schoolmate of Hannibal Hamlin. His wife, who was Miss Mary E. Cummings, was educated at the old Hebron Academy of Maine. To Mr. and Mrs. Timothy Wellcome was born five sons and one daughter – the latter and Dr. Wellcome being the only ones now living. Three of the sons were clergymen – two of them for fifty years – one was a farmer and one a physician. While a boy Dr. Wellcome attended school at New Portland. When he was sixteen years old he left home and began school again at the high school in Hallawell, Maine. From this school he gradated at the age of twenty-one. At once his attention was turned in medicine; he worked hard to fit himself for the practice of that profession. He is a graduate of the College of Physicians and Surgeons at St. Louis. He commenced practice at the age of twenty-five. In 1863 Dr. Wellcome moved from New England to Wisconsin, and soon afterwards to Garden City, Minnesota, where he resumed the practice of medicine. In the fall of 1862 he was appointed by Governor Ramsey, of Minnesota, examining surgeon for the draft, with headquarters at Mankato, Minnesota. In 1863 he was contract surgeon in the Tenth Regiment Volunteer Infantry, as first assistant surgeon in the place of W. W. Clark, who was sick; this position he held for seven months. He also had medical charge of a regiment of Confederate soldiers who were prisoners at the fort of Madelia, Minnesota. Dr. Wellcome continued the practice of medicine in Blue Earth County until 1870, when he moved to New Ulm, where he lived and practiced for about four years. He then moved to Sleepy Eye, where he has continued in the profession ever since, with the exception of two years, when sickness prevented active work. For four years he held the position of surgeon for the Winona & St. Peter Railway Company for its lines west of Sleepy Eye; he also held the position of United States pension surgeon for eight years. During his long period of practice, Dr. Wellcome has been preceptor to the following physicians, who have graduated from regular schools of medicine. Dr. J. W. Andrews, of Mankato; Dr. I. F. Burnside, of West Duluth; Dr. F. H. Wellcome of Granite Falls; Dr. Wm. P. Lee, of Fairfax, and Dr. J. W. B. Wellcome, Jr., of Sleepy Eye. Dr. Wellcome is a member of the St. Louis Academy of Medicine, and is also a member of the State Medical Society of Minnesota. He has been in the active practice of medicine for forty-four years. His practice has been extensive, and he has accumulated considerable property. Is a stockholder in the Yellow Medicine County Bank. His son, F. H. Wellcome, is president of the bank. At about the time he commenced practice he was married to Miss Abby C. Starbird. Three sons and one daughter were born to them. Only the daughter is now living, Mrs. Ella Case. Mrs. Wellcome died in 1857. In 1858 Dr. Wellcome was married to Sarah J. Hauser, of Pennsylvania. They have had four sons; two of them have adopted their father's profession. Though over seventy years of age, Dr. Wellcome is still actively engaged in practice and in the study and verification of the sciences to which he has devoted so much of his life.
 


Carl Weschcke
Source: Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society (1912) Volume XIV; Page 840; transcribed by FoFG mz

Weschcke, Carl, physician, b. in Prussia March 4, 1831. d. in New Ulm Minn. Oct. 13, 1906. He came to New Ulm in 1860, engaged in the practice of medicine and in 1865 opened the first drug store there, was mayor of New Ulm nine terms.
 



Milton G. Wylie
Source: "The Book of Detroiters. Edited by Albert Nelson Marquis, 1908 - Sub. by Chris Walters

WYLIE, Milton G., merchant; born, Brown Co., Minn., Mar. 25, 1867; son of John and Belle (Hogle) Wylie; educated in district schools of Polk Co., IA.; married at Clarkson, Mich., 1890, Millie M. Wolfe. Engaged in farming in Polk Co., IA., until 1886; then in lumber woods of Northern Michigan until 1888; was connected with Stanton, Sampson & Co., and later with Daniels & Ives, and Monroe, Rosenfield & Co.; associated with others and in spring of 1906 bought stock of latter firm, and has since been president of The Moore-Wylie Co., furnishing goods. Director Marvel Waist Co. Prohibitionist. Baptist. Office: 180 Jefferson Av. Residence: 24 Prentis Av.




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