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Full text of "History of the city of Evansville and Vanderburg County, Indiana"










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GENEALOGY COLLECTION 



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HISTORY 



OF THE 



CITY OF EVANSVILLE 



AND 



VANDERBURG COUNTY. 
INDIANA 



By FRANK M. GILBERT 



Volume II 



ILLUSTRATED 



CHICAGO 

THE PIONEER PUBUSHING COMPANY 
1910 



1326967 




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BIOGRAPHICAL 



SAMUEL ORR. 



While Samuel Orr was one of the most successful business men of 
Evansville, his attention being given to the management of projects which 
constitute important elements in the material progress of the city. There 
were other phases in his life as pronounced as his business ability. He 
was well known for a benevolent spirit that found joy in generous giving 
and many an individual and public project benefited by his liberality. 
While twenty-eight years have come and gone since he was called to his 
final rest, he is yet remembered for the good which he did and for the 
beneficial effect of his life upon the development of the city. 

He was bom in Newtownards in County Down, Ireland, in the year 
i8lo, and acquired his education in the schools of that country. After 
attaining man's estate, he wedded Miss Martha Lowry, also a native of 
the Emerald isle, and in 1833, with his young wife, he came to America, 
landing at Baltimore. From that city they proceeded to Pittsburg, Pennsyl- 
vania, where Mr. Orr obtained employment in a store. His financial re- 
sources were very limited but he possessed strong determination and 
his ability, integrity and industry soon attracted the attention of Messrs. 
James and Alexander Laughlin of Pittsburg, who in 1835 induced him to 
come to Evansville as their representative. Here he established a pork 
packing and general merchandise business, which from the beginning 
proved profitable. In 1836 he was admitted to a partnershinp and for 
many years was associated with the Messrs. Laughlin in the conduct of a 
wholesale grocery business and also in the iron trade. In 1855 the two 
interests were separated and in the grocery department Mr. Orr's son, 
James L. Orr, and Matthew Dalzell were admitted to a partnership under 
the firm style of Orr, Dalzell & Company, under which name the business 
was transacted successfully until the outbreak of the Civil war. The iron 
business was carried on under the name of Samuel Orr until 1866, when 
he was joined by James Davidson and James L. Orr, under the firm style 



6 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

of Samuel Orr & Company, which was continued until the death of the 
senior partner in 1882. The business was then continued by James L. Orr, 
Edward H. Mann and Ben H. Griffith, under the style of Orr, Griffith & 
Company. On the ist of January, 1900, Mr. Griffith retired from the firm 
and from that time until the present the business has been carried on under 
the style of the Orr Iron Company, consisting of James L. Orr, Edward H. 
Mann and Samuel L. Orr, the last named being son of the senior partner, 
Under capable management was developed one of the oldest and largest 
iron houses in the west. The business grew in volume and importance 
being based upon the most substantial commercial principles. 

Mr. Orr possessed a genius for organization and his initiative spirit 
and untiring energy found scope in the establishment and conduct of busi- 
ness interests which have been of the utmost benefit to Evansville. As the 
years passed the trade relations of his two interests reached out over a 
broad field and brought back rich returns. Moreover, the imprint of Mr. 
Orr's individuality is found on nearly all of the great enterprises of the 
city. He was one of the incorporators of the Evansville & Terre Haute 
Railroad, early recognizing the necessity and value for rapid transporta- 
tion as a factor in business activity. Moreover, his name became a promi- 
nent and honored one in banking circles. He was one of the promoters 
of the Evansville branch of the Bank of the State of Indiana, was one of 
the original directors of the Evansville National Bank, presiding as its 
chief executive officer until his death. 

Both Mr. and Mrs. Orr passed away in 1882, the former on the 8th 
of February and the latter on the 9th of October. In their family were 
three children but only one is now living : James L. Orr, who is his father's 
successor in business and one of the most prominent residents of Evans- 
ville. 

The parents held membership in the Walnut Street Presbyterian 
church and following their death one of the appropriate memorials erected 
by their children to commemorate their hves and work was the beautiful 
parsonage of the church in which they worshipped. For a quarter of a cen- 
tury Mr. Orr served as one of the elders of the church and not only gave 
liberally to its support but also labored with hand and heart for its spiritual 
and temporal welfare. It was largely through his instrumentality that the 
church indebtedness was lifted about two weeks before his death. For 
many years he was a trustee of Wabash College, to which he left a bequest 
in aid of the library. 

Mr. Orr was, moreover, a man of most philanthropic spirit and as he 
prospered gave generously of his means for the benefit of others. His 
life was never self-centered but reached out into the broader fields where 
the general interests of society were involved and where progress and ad- 
vancement are stimulated. He never regarded business as the sole aim of 
life but rather as but one phase of existence and as he prospered he made 
generous division of his success that others might enjoy with him the fruits 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 7 

of his labor. His generosity was never prompted by a sense of duty but 
rather by a deep interest in his fellowmen and it was ever a pleasure to 
him to assist the unfortunate and the needy. His word was accepted with 
absolute confidence and reliance. Truth and honor were so clearly dis- 
closed in his daily transactions that no man doubted the one or assailed the 
other. One of his biographers has said of him: "In many humble homes 
widows and orphans who had for years enjoyed his benefactions mourned 
the loss of a loving friend when he was called to his final rest. Into his 
large heart he took the children and all suffering ones. Much they missed 
the sunny smile and welcome gift that always marked his coming. In 
spirit he stooped to the lowliest and bound to his loving nature all classes 
up to the highest." 



FLETCHER M. DURBIN. 

The spirit of progress has been dominant in no field to a greater extent 
than in the development of transportation facilities. In this era of rapid liv- 
ing time is considered money and there is on the part of the public a demand 
for rapid transit and well organized railway service. Into this field of busi- 
ness Fletcher M. Durbin has directed his efforts and since 1907 has been 
manager of the city and interurban railway lines of Evansville, giving careful 
supervision to each detail of the business and studying the possibilities for 
improving the service. His work in this connection has been of value not 
only to the company which he represents but to the general public as well. 

A native of Anderson, Indiana, he was born April 25, 1879, and is the 
only child of Winfield T. and Bertha (McCullough) Durbin, residents of 
Indianapolis, where the father is conducting manufacturing interests. 

Fletcher M. Durbin was educated in public and private schools. He 
supplemented his early opportunities by a course of study in Williams Col- 
lege from which he was graduated in 1902. Since that time he has been 
continuously connected with street and interurban railway interests. For 
five years he was connected with the railway lines of IndianapoHs, winning 
promotion as his experience and ability fittted him for advancement. When 
he severed his connection with the company he was assistant superintendent. 
In 1907 he came to Evansville as general manager for the city and inter- 
urban lines and has since occupied that position, in which connection he has 
done much for the improvement of the service, his efforts being followed by 
practical results. He is also secretary of the Indianapolis & Cincinnati 
Traction Company, nor is he unknown in financial circles, being a director of 
the Mercantile National Bank of Evansville and also of the Citizens State 
Bank of Anderson, Indiana. 

Mr. Durbin, still in his teens, at the outbreak of the Spanish-American 
war enlisted for service in the One Hundred and Sixty-first Indiana In- 



8 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

fantry and became second lieutenant of Company A with which he was 
engaged on active duty in Cuba. His political support has always been 
given to the republican party but without desire for office as a reward for 
party fealty. 

On the 20th of November, 1907, Mr. Durbin was married to Miss Hazel 
West, a daughter of M. Thornton West, of IndianapoHs, and they now have 
one child, Elinor. The family residence is at No. 300, Chandler avenue, and 
there Mr. and Mrs. Durbin extend a hearty welcome to their many friends 
whom they have gained during the period of their residence in this city. 
Mr. Dubin in one of the most self-masterful because one of the best 
balanced of men, not given to extremes and yet not without that contagious 
enthusiasm which is a promotive element in many public interests. 



MADISON J. BRAY, M. D. 

Activity in the field of medical science was promoted most largely 
through the efforts of Dr. Madison J. Bray, a distinguished physician and 
surgeon and one of the founders of the Evansville Medical College. His 
creative spirit and his broad investigation were manifest in improved 
methods of practice, as well as in his contributions to medical literature. 
He was born in Androscoggin county, Maine, January i, 181 1, a son of 
Captain William and Ruth (Cushman) Bray. The father commanded a 
company of cavalry during the war of 1812 and in days of peace devoted 
his attention to merchandising. While the period of his boyhood may 
have been a happy one, it was nevertheless a busy one for Dr. Madison J. 
Bray. He attended the village schools in the winter seasons and in the 
summer months worked in a carding mill until sixteen years of age, when 
he began teaching, following the profession for eight years. He regarded 
this, however, merely as an initial step to other professional labor. 

It was his desire to become a physician and while teaching he gave his 
evening and other leisure hours to the study of medicine. Subsequently 
he pursued three courses of medical lectures, one at Dartmouth College of 
New Hampshire and two at Bowdoin College, Maine. He was graduated 
from the latter institution in 1835 and in the fall of that year left home 
to establish himself in a field where he believed his professional labors 
might prove profitable. His objective point was Louisiana but upon ar- 
riving at Louisville, Kentucky, he found his funds exhausted and in order 
to obtain the money necessary to continue his travels he applied for a 
school. Before he was accepted, however, he overheard a conversation 
in which Evansville, then a little hamlet, was mentioned. This is but 
another evidence of the fact that it is ofttimes what seems a trivial inci- 
dent that changes the entire course of life for an individual. 





c~ 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 11 

Abandoning his former plans Dr. Bray engaged passage on a boat bound 
for Evansville and on the 25th of November, 1835, arrived in the city. 
He was practically penniless but he had been well tutored in his chosen 
profession, possessed energy, determination and courage. Dr. William 
Trafton was at that time the only physician in all this region and, learning 
that a young man of the medical profession had arrived, sent for him. 
That he was impressed with the appearance and ability of the young man 
is indicated in the fact that he at once proposed a partnership, which was 
gladly accepted. Dr. Bray therefore entered upon the practice of his 
profession here and while in earlier years it involved the hardships that 
come to the pioneer physician, his business grew in volume and importance 
as time passed on and the country became more thickly settled. For many 
years he devoted his attention largely to surgery and was recognized as one 
of the most able and distinguished surgeons of Indiana. He became a 
prominent member of the State Medical Society and in 1856 was honored 
wnth election to the presidency. He was also a member of the Tri-State 
Medical Society and wrote for it a history of surgery in Vanderburg and 
adjoining counties. For years he served as a member of the board of 
health and at all times he urged the acceptance and utilization of pre- 
ventive methods. In 1847 he became associated with others in procuring 
a charter for the Evansville Medical College and in that institution filled 
the chair of surgery from the organization of the school until the opening 
of the Civil war. 

In 1862 Dr. Bray resigned a large and lucrative practice to aid in the 
organization of the Sixtieth Regiment of Indiana Infantry, of which he 
was commissioned surgeon. He went to the front with that command, 
doing arduous duty upon the fields and in the hospitals in connection with 
the regiment, but at the end of two years he was obliged to resign because 
his own health had become undermined. At the close of the war he was 
appointed surgeon of St. Mary's Hospital in Evansville and following his 
military experience he was again called to the chair of surgery in the 
Evansville Medical College and occupied it until his health forced his re- 
tirement. He was also surgeon for the Marine Hospital at Evansville 
under appointment of President Van Buren, from 1847 until the Civil war. 
Aside from his practice he was known as one of the incorporators of the 
Canal Bank, now the First National Bank, and his name was ever an hon- 
ored one upon commercial paper. 

In 1838 Dr. Bray was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Johnson, a 
daughter of Charles and Ann (Tate) Johnson. They became parents of 
a son and daughter, Madison J. and Elizabeth, but the latter is now de- 
ceased. 

Such in brief is the life history of one of the most honored among the 
pioneer settlers of Evansville, who passed away August 25, 1900, in the 
ninetieth year of his age. The work that he did was not only beneficial to 
his patients but also for many years constituted a standard for professional 



12 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

service in Vanderburg county. His ability was pronounced and advancing 
years chronicled his increasing skill and ability, the result of thorough re- 
search, close investigation and broad experience. He was most conscien- 
tious in the performance of his professional duties and in fact throughout 
his entire life carefully fulfilled every obligation that devolved upon him. 



JOHN A. REITZ. 



The important part which the German element has played in the up- 
building of Evansville is perhaps not thoroughly understood or appreciated, 
but careful consideration of the history of the city shows that the sons of 
the fatherland have contributed in large measure to the growth and advance- 
ment that has here been achieved. In this connection due recognition should 
be paid John A. Reitz. What Evansville would have been without his coop- 
eration it is hardly possible to determine. Mastering the lessons of life day 
by day, his post-graduate work in the school of experience at length placed 
placed him with the men of eminent ability and he long figured prominently 
in connection with Evansville and southwestern Indiana, imbuing with his 
own progressive spirit all of the business interests with which he became 
associated. 

In the town of Dorlar, Prussia, Mr. Reitz was bom December 17, 181 5, 
his father, Francis Joseph Reitz, there owning large estates. His ancestors 
were noted for longevity. His grandmother reached the remarkable old 
age of one hundred and sixteen years and following her husband's death, 
when she was eighty-one years of age, she took up the management of the 
salt manufacturing business which he had established and successfully con- 
ducted it for thirty years. 

Careful home training imbued John A. Reitz with principles which were 
manifest throughout his entire life. At the age of twelve years he was sent 
to Esloh, one of the important educational centers of Prussia, where he 
pursued his studies for four years under a capable tutor. The next five 
years were devoted to active work at home, bringing him to the period of 
his majority. His interest in America was awakened by reports which he 
had heard and, hoping to enjoy life under republican government and to 
find opportunities for business advancement on this side the Atlantic, he 
sailed for the United States. Up to that time no resident of his native 
village had come to the new world but difficulties vanished before determina- 
tion and courage and although breaking home ties was unpleasant, he reso- 
lutely turned his face toward the land of promise nearly four thousand 
miles away. All ocean-going vessels were then propelled by sails and on 
one of these slow-going ships he made his way to Baltimore. However, he 
still felt that the land of promise was beyond and crossed the Alleghenies 
with Louisville, Kentucky, as his destination. He was induced to establish 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 13 

a pottery at Evansville, where clay adapted to the purpose had been dis- 
covered. At that early period, in a sparsely settled country, there was little 
demand for this ware and he had burned only one kiln when he realized 
that the venture could not be made a paying one. A year was then spent in 
Louisville, after which he made permanent location in Evansville in 1838, 
securing a situation in a saw and planing mill owned by Judge Stephens. 
The plant, however, was soon afterward destroyed by fire and he obtained 
a position in another sawmill. When a few years had gone by he utilized 
the capital saved from his earnings in building a sawmill in connection with 
his half brother. They conducted the business successfully for about a 
decade, when the brother retired. Soon afterward the mill burned but 
almost immediately a new mill rose phoenixlike from the ashes. His busi- 
ness grew so that in 1873 the mill was rebuilt and enlarged and in time be- 
came one of the most expensive, substantial and profitable manufactories of 
this city. His sons were admitted to a partnership under the firm style of 
John A. Reitz & Sons and in the manufacture of hardwood lumber their firm 
probably exceeded any other in volume of business in the country. 

Mr. Reitz's business ability and resources were by no means limited to 
one field, however, many enterprises being stimulated by his judgment and 
promoted by his cooperation. In 1857 he formed a partnership with John A. 
Haney for the purpose of carrying on a foundry business and after twenty- 
four years' successful operation of that industry the enterprise was profit- 
ably sold. Mr. Reitz was also well known in financial circles as one of the 
organizers of the Crescent City Bank in 1856. His service as director was 
followed by election to the vice presidency, while afterward he became 
president and contributed largely toward making this one of the most sub- 
stantial banking institutions of the state, carrying on business until the pas- 
sage of the national bank law. It was then succeeded by the Merchants 
National Bank, of which Mr. Reitz became director. He afterward trans- 
ferred his interest to the German National Bank and after serving as one 
of its directors for several years was elected vice president and afterward 
president, continuing at the head of the institution until his death on the 
I2th of May, 1891. His activity and success as a manufacturer and banker 
would alone entitle him to rank with the leading business men of this part 
of the state, and yet in other fields he attained equal prominence. Trans- 
portation facilities were greatly promoted through his cooperation. He 
became one of the incorporators of the Evansville, Carmi & Paducah road 
and was president of the company. This is now the St. Louis division of 
the Louisville & Nashville system. He was for years a director of the Nash- 
ville division of the same system from Evansville to Nashville, Tennessee. 
When the town of Lamasco was incorporated in 1846 he became its chief 
executive officer and managed its aflfairs with ability until it was consoli- 
dated with Evansville. While president of its board of trustees he was 
largely instrumental in advancing the interests of the Evansville & Craw- 
fordsville (now the Evansville & Terra Haute) and the Straight Line Rail- 



14 . HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

roads. He was associated with Willard Carpenter in the conduct of exten- 
sive real-estate enterprises which netted handsome profits. 

While preeminently a capable and successful business man, his splendid 
capacities and powers in this direction were permeated with the leaven of 
charity, prompting him to the generous division of his wealth with the un- 
fortunate. He indeed deserves to be classed with the philanthropists of 
Evansville, for he constantly befriended the poor and needy and gave 
liberally wherever material assistance was needed. As a memorial to his 
daughter Louise, who died in California a number of years ago, he built a 
large home for the aged on a site selected for its beauty and pleasant sur- 
roundings and presented this to the Little Sisters of the Poor in order to 
insure the proper care of the inmates. The home provides for about one 
hundred, nor is admission limited to those of Roman Catholic faith. There 
is no sectarianism in the home, for the deserving poor who are incapacitated 
for earning a livelihood are here welcomed and cared for without regard to 
creed or nationality. While a devout Roman Catholic, his membership 
being in the church of the Holy Trinity, he also gave freely to Protestant 
churches. He built at his own expense the church of the Sacred Heart and 
presented it to the bishop as a place of worship for the Irish Catholics. He 
was a liberal contributor to the building and maintenance of Evans Hall, 
dedicated solely to the cause of temperance. The public projects of Evans- 
ville instituted for the benefit and upbuilding of the city counted upon and 
received his endorsement and cooperation. His humanitarianism was broad, 
his spirit democratic, and the humblest as well as the highest could depend 
upon his sympathy and his friendship. It is true that he was remarkably 
successful in business and gained a generous share of the world's goods, yet 
his prosperity was not due to any fortunate combination of circumstances. 
Sound judgment — the result of experience and careful consideration — 
guided him in his business undertakings and he never stopped to grieve over 
a loss but bent his whole energies to the further accomplishment of his 
purpose. At times the unscrupulous took advantage of his bounty but he 
always preferred that several unworthy individuals should receive from him 
rather than that one should be turned away empty handed who needed aid. 
In 1839 Mr. Reitz was married to Miss Gertrude Frisse, whose birth- 
place was not far from her husband's childhood home. Of their ten children, 
two have passed away — the daughter Louise, who died in California in 
1886, and a son who was drowned in Colorado in 1892. To Mr. Reitz home 
was the center of his universe, yet he never allowed parental indulgence to 
interfere with the careful training of his children, knowing that certain 
lessons of life must eventually be learned. That he instilled into their 
minds certain principles is evidenced in the fact that the policy which he 
inaugurated in connection with the manufacturing business has been main- 
tained by those who succeeded him. The relation between himself and his 
employes was always cordial and sympathetic and though he employed many 
men, the business was never interrupted by a strike. Mutual confidence was 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 15 

firmly established there and this condition has always existed, being manifest 
today under the present management as well as when John A. Reitz was at 
the head of the enterprise. Moreover, the men who have grown old in the 
service are not discharged by reason of their advancing years ; their names 
are continued on the pay rolls at the same wages they received in the prime 
of Hfe. 

Mr. Reitz's recognition of the obligations of citizenship was never over- 
shadowed by his other activities and interests and his cooperation was again 
and again given to further public projects which were instituted for the 
welfare of the city. He was elected and served as a member of the city 
council and in 1862 was sent to the state legislature as a joint representative 
from the counties of Vanderburg and Posey, serving during the memorable 
session of the following year. He was a stalwart democrat yet did not place 
partisanship before the general good nor personal aggrandizement before 
the welfare of the commonwealth. In this respect he was not a partisan. 
He was, however, firm in support of his honest convictions and from the 
course which he believed to be right nothing could swerve him. He never 
reached his opinions hastily, his ideas upon many questions being the result 
of careful deliberation and mature judgment. When his advice was sought 
concerning business affairs, as was frequently done, he gave a conservative 
and honest opinion and his advice, if followed, usually led to desired results. 
He had a horror of debt and never incurred financial obligations. He was 
never afraid to face a fellowman, for he owed no man anything. He never 
took the cares of business into his own household but sought to give expres- 
sion there to the best traits of his character and his relation in his family was 
largely that of the ideal husband and father. His wife possessed a most 
charitable disposition and he gladly gave her the means to support liberally 
churches and worthy benevolent objects. They were always one in interests 
and in purpose, their mutual love and confidence growing as the years 
passed. The name of John Reitz is indeed a synonyn in Evansville for that 
which is honorable and progressive in business, yet he never allowed per- 
sonal interest or ambition to dwarf his public spirit. His breadth of view 
not only saw possibilities for his own advancement but for the city's develop- 
ment, "and his lofty patriotism prompted him to utilize the latter as quickly 
and as effectively as the former. 



JOSEPH ROLLET. 



Joseph Rollet, a representative of the farming interests of Vanderburg 
county, was born in Strasburg, Germany, August 15, 1840, a son of Joseph 
and Catherine Rollet. While spending his youthful days in his parents' 
home in the fatherland he began his education, which was largely acquired 
in that country. At length he came with his parents to America and for 



16 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

two months was a pupil in the schools of Evansville. The greater part of 
his life has been devoted to general farming and since the 5th of May, 
1854, he has lived upon the place in Perry township which is now his home. 
Here he has improved eighty acres of land, transforming it into a valuable 
tract by bringing the fields under a high state of cultivation and adding 
substantial buildings and modem equipments. His life has been character- 
ized by unfaltering diligence and industry, which in time has been crowned 
with success. 

On the 3d of May, 1865, Mr. Rollet was married in German township, 
St. Joseph, Indiana, to Miss Sophia Spitzer, a daughter of Lawrence Spitzer, 
who fought in the French wars under Napoleon. Coming to America, he 
was for many years a resident of this part of the state, his death occurring 
in November, 1909, when he had reached the very venerable age of ninety- 
seven years and eight months. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Rollet have been bom 
five children. Thomas and John, twins, married Kate and Mary Speaker, 
sisters. Unto Thomas and Kate have been born two children, Maggie and 
William, while John and Mary Rollet have three children : Julia, Rosie and 
Andrew. Henry Rollet wedded Elizabeth Matz and their children are 
Francis, Sophia, Celia and Henry B. Lena Rollet became the wife of 
August Hartman and has two children, Joseph and Julia. Elizabeth Rollet 
is the wife of John Matz and their children are Annie, Delia and Josie. 

For fifty-six years Joseph Rollet has lived in this county and upon the 
farm which is now his home and is therefore largely acquainted with the 
history of this region, its progress and upbuilding. He has been deeply 
interested in all that has been accomplished and has borne his full share in 
the work of development, especially along general agricultural lines. 



GEORGE W. BEMENT. 



George W. Bement was born in Evansville in March, 1859. His parents, 
Charles Russell and Mary C. Bement, had but recently removed to this city 
from Terre Haute Indiana, and the father became an active and influential 
factor in business life here, his labors constituting a forceful and resultant 
element in business activity and progress. He was well known in connection 
with mercantile and banking interests, having been the organizer and almost 
continuously the president of the Merchants National Bank up to the time 
of its liquidation in 1885. He belonged to that class whose well balanced 
capacities and powers of keen judgment constitute them the stable element 
in the community, their labors actuated by a spirit of progress that, however, 
tempers enterprise with a spirit of safe conservatism. 

Reared in his native city, George W. Bement supplemented his public 
school training by a preparatory course at an academy in Norwalk, Con- 
necticut, before entering Yale. His college course was pursued within the 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 19 

classic walls of the New Haven university and to his college training he 
added the broader knowledge that comes through extensive travel. At differ- 
ent times, both in his young manhood and in his later years, he went abroad, 
visiting the many points of historic, scenic and modern interest in different 
countries of Europe. While family connection secured him his first position 
in the business world, it was individual merit that led him onward and his 
initiative spirit make him a factor in the organization and development of 
business enterprises of large value to the city. He was first connected 
with the Merchants National Bank but later became interested in the firm of 
Behme & Seitz, wholesale grocers. Opportunity for the enlargement of his 
activity and the scope of his business led him to organize the Bement-Seitz 
Company, with which he was connected until the time of his death. It 
became one of the most important wholesale interests of the city and for the 
accommodation of the business he erected on Water street the fine building 
which stands as a monument to his enterprise. In its erection he manifested 
his faith in the city and his cooperation with various projects he contributed 
in substantial measure to the general work of upbuilding. 

Mr. Bement was also widely known because of his deep interest and 
support of our national game of baseball. For two years he was the presi- 
dent of the Central League Baseball Qub. He owned tlie Evansville Club 
for a year and a half of the existence of the old Three I League, and after 
the withdrawal of the Evansville and Terre Haute clubs from that league he 
was instrumental in organizing the Central League. 

On the 24th of March, 1896, Mr. Bement was married to Mrs. Myrtle 
Walker Hathaway, of this city, and occupied a beautiful suburban home on 
St. Joseph avenue, where man has vied with nature in producing all that 
is beautiful in flowers and shrubbery as an adornment to a well kept lawn. 
There Mrs. Bement has continued to make her home since the death of 
her husband on the 29th of January, 1908. He was then in his forty-ninth 
year — a man in the prime of life, too young, it seemed, to answer the final 
summons, for his activities and interests made him a valued and representa- 
tive resident of his native city. An engaging personality and social qualites 
rendered him a favorite with all and those with whom he came in contact 
cherished his friendship. 



ANDREW MOLL. 



There is no rule for achieving success and yet there are certain elements 
which are indispensable in the attainment of prosperity. These are close 
application, industry and reliable business methods, all of which find expres- 
sion in the life work of Andrew Moll, who is now engaged in merchandising 
in Stringtown. Vanderburg county numbers him among her native sons. 
He was born in October, 1874, of the marriage of John B. and Katherine 
Moll, who were natives of Germany and of Indiana respectively. They 



20 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

became residents of this county in 1872, settling in Scott township, whence 
they afterward removed to Center township. In early life the father learned 
the woodworker's trade and followed that business continuously until his 
death, which occurred in March, 1898. His widow still survives him and 
now makes her home with her son Andrew, who remained with his parents 
through the period of his boyhood and youth, acquiring his education in the 
public schools and in the Catholic schools of this city. For a time he 
attended St. Mary's Catholic school of Evansville and was graduated from 
St. Anthony's Academy in June, 1888. At the age of twenty-two he left 
home to undertake the solution of life's problems independently. To provide 
for his support he secured employment by the month, being thus employed 
for about a year. He then returned home and worked for his father for 
some time, gaining expert skill in that line. Following his father's death 
he operated the shop for the mother for five years, when he bought out the 
business, added other stock and started independently. A year later he 
opened a mercantile store at Stringtown, where he has since carried on 
business. He has a well selected line of goods to meet the demands of 
general trade and has succeeded in securing a liberal and growing patronage. 
In 1902 Mr. Moll was united in marriage to Miss Frances Wemhener, 
a daughter of William and Frances Wemhener, who were natives of Ger- 
many. Mr. and Mrs. Moll attend the Catholic church and he gives his 
political allegiance to the democratic party but does not seek or desire office, 
preferring to concentrate his energies upon his business affairs, in which he 
is meeting with substantial success. He has two large fish ponds upon his 
property, furnishing a fine place for game fishing. His enterprising spirit 
has brought him into important business relations and the passing years 
chronicle his success, for he is making steady progress toward the goal of 
prosperity. 



CAPTAIN OTTO F. JACOBI. 

Honored and respected by all, there is no man who occupies a more 
enviable position in commercial and financial circles in Evansville than Cap- 
tain Otto F. Jacobi, the president of the Central Trust & Savings Bank. 
This is due not alone to the success which he has achieved but to the honor- 
able and straightforward methods which he has always followed. He early 
recognized the fact that promotion is won through a service, not of time, 
but of talent — the utilization of one's powers for the benefit and interests 
of those whom they represent, and because of this his loyalty and energy 
were ever manifest in the service of those whom he represented until he 
passed from the ranks of the employed to that of the employer, his progres- 
sion at length bringing him to the prominent place which he now fills in the 
banking circles of Evansville. He was born in Meiningen, Saxony, Ger- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 21 

many, November 28, 1835. His father Gottlieb Jacobi, was a graduate of 
the University of Breslau and for many years held an official position under 
the Duke of Saxe- Weimar. His wife, Mrs. Fredericka Jacobi, was a des- 
cendant of the Von Oswalds, a prominent family in military and literary 
circles in Germany. The death of Gottlieb Jacobi occurred in 1849, while 
his wife passed away in 1841. 

Captain Otto F. Jacobi, the eldest son in a family of four children, was 
about thirteen years of age when left an orphan. He was educated in the 
schools of his native country, and in 1852, when a youth of seventeen, came 
to America, settling first in Philadelphia. In 1855 he enlisted in the regular 
army, becoming a member of Company D, First United States Infantry, 
in which he attained the rank of first sergeant, acting in that capacity for 
many years. When the Civil war broke out he was with his regiment at 
Fort Cobb, in the Indian territory. He remained with the regular army 
until 1863, when he received a commission as first lieutenant in the Tenth 
Tennessee Volunteer Infantry. Faithful service won him promotion to the 
captaincy of Company G on the Twenty-third of July, 1864, and in the fol- 
lowing year he was appointed assistant commissary of musters by the sec- 
retary of war and assigned to duty with the First Cavalry division of the 
department of the Cumberland. He continued to act in that capacity until 
after the close of hostilities, when in July, 1865, he was honorably discharged. 

Following the close of the war Captain Jacobi took up his abode in 
Evansville, where he established a wholesale tobacco and cigar business. In 
1869, however, he sold out and in 1870 accepted the position of bookkeeper 
in the H. F. Blount Plow Works. The value of his services won him ap- 
pointment to the position of financial manager and he was admitted to a 
share of the profits in 1883. He has long been numbered among the repre- 
sentative business men in this city, and extending his efforts into banking 
circles has ever maintained a most honored name and prominent connection 
therein. For years he was vice president of the Central Trust & Savings 
Bank, and on Jan. i, 1901, was chosen to the presidency. He is also direc- 
tor of the First National Bank. To the solution of involved financial prob- 
lems he brings sound judgment, keen sagacity and long experience. By his 
work he has reared for himself a magnificent testimonial and an indestruc- 
tible compliment to his management and financial genius. He is one of that 
class of representative and successful men who seem to find the happiness 
of life in the success of their work, yet his activities have been by no means 
confined to interests which bear alone upon individual prosperity. His public 
trusts have been many and all have been faithfully executed. On various 
occasions he has been a moving factor in projects which have been of distinct 
value to the city and he is now one of the trustees and treasurer of Oak Hill 
cemetery and a trustee and treasurer of the Willard Library. 

Captain Jacobi was married in 1862 to Miss Mary E. Sawyer, of Corinth, 
Mississippi, and unto them have been bom five children, but only two are 
now living, Otto F. and Sidney F. The spirit of enterprise which caused 



22 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Captain Jacobi to leave his native land at the age of seventeen and seek the 
opportunities of the new world has ever been with him a dominant charac- 
teristic. He has never regarded any position in business as final, but rather 
as the starting point for further effort towards successful accomplishment. 
At the age of seventy-five years he is still an active factor in financial circles 
in Evansville, honored and respected by all who know him and most of all 
where he is best known. 



ROBERT R. WILLIAMS. 

The path of opportunity is an ever broadening one and the way be- 
comes easier as one progresses, for there is less competition the higher one 
goes. Each forward step brings a wider outlook and greater advantages, 
and with firm step and unalterable purpose Robert R. Williams has con- 
tinued along this path until he has attained a position of prominence in 
the business circles of his adopted city, being now general manager, sec- 
retary and treasurer of The Indiana Tie Company of Evansville. He was 
bom in Morganfield, Kentucky, December 20, 1870, and is a son of H. R. 
and Mary E. Williams, being one of their four surviving children, the 
other three being Ella M., Elizabeth A. arid Leslie Williams. 

The father was bom in Smith county, Tennessee, January 10, 1846, 
and the district schools afforded him his early educational privileges, after 
which he had the benefit of instruction in a Nashville college. When his 
college days were over he retumed to the home of his father, who owned 
a large plantation and was also proprietor of a general mercantile store. 
H. R. Williams then worked for his father until the latter's death. In 1869 
he removed to Morganfield, Kentucky, where he engaged in the building 
and contracting business until 1879. That year witnessed his arrival in 
Evansville, where he was also closely, actively and successfully identified 
with building operations up to the time of his retirement in 1900. The 
liberal patronage that had been accorded him brought him a comfortable 
competence, enabling him to put aside the cares of active business life, 
and he is now spending his days in well earned rest. 

Robert R. Williams was a lad of seven or eight years when the family 
settled in Evansville, and he received his education in the public schools 
of this city. Seeking a position in business circles, in 1887 he engaged as 
messenger in the accounting department of the Evansville & Terre Haute 
Railroad. Gradually he worked upward, winning his promotions through 
merit and ability, and when he severed his connection with the railroad 
company, he was holding the responsible position of traveling auditor. He 
afterward entered the service of The Indiana Tie Company as chief clerk 
and in 1902 he was elected secretary, treasurer and general manager. As 
an officer of that company he has contributed much to the success of the 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 25 

enterprise, capably controlling the interests of the company and managing 
its trade connections in such a manner that successful results are achieved. 
On the 15th of October, 1901, Mr. WiUiams was united in marriage in 
Mount Vernon, Illinois, to Miss Ellanora Fitz-Gerrell, daughter of James J. 
and Sarah M. Fitz-Gerrell, one of the most prominent families in southern 
Illinois. They have one child, Robert Fitz-Gerrell, born September 10, 
1906. The family attend the Christian Science church. Mr. Williams be- 
longs! to the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and two of the promi- 
nent social organizations of the city, the Country and Crescent Clubs. His 
political allegiance is given to the democratic party but without desire for 
office as a reward for party fealty. While his business career has none 
of the spectacular features of the military or political leader, it is none the 
less important, nor none the less successful in the results achieved. 



ANTHONY REIS. 



In the year 1855 Anthony Reis became identified with the business in- 
terests of Evansville, and in 1857 became connected with the leather trade, 
with which he was associated for many years thereafter. He was bom in 
Cincinnati, May 11, 1829, and is of German parentage, as the surname 
indicates. Habits of industry were early developed and from his youthful 
days until his demise he was dependent upon his own resources, becoming 
a self-made man. While yet a boy he entered the tannery of his brother- 
in-law and afterward served a regular apprenticeship that he might learn 
the trade of a tanner and currier. Later he was employed as a currier for 
two years. In time he became actuated with the ambition of engaging in 
business on his own account and bent his energies to the accomplishment of 
this hope. Eventually he found opportunity to carry out his plan and was 
engaged in business in Cincinnati, Ohio, until 1855, when he disposed of his 
interests there and came to Evansville. 

Here in 1857, Mr. Reis opened a leather store and later established a 
tannery in connection with the sale of leather. In the conduct of this 
enterprise he displayed marked business ability, for when he purchased the 
tannery it was a small and inconvenient plant and had but little machinery. 
He applied his practical knowledge and experience previously obtained to 
the production of leather and to the development of the plant, as well as to 
the enlargement of his patronage, and finally had one of the best establish- 
ments of its kind in the country, equipped with the latest improved ma- 
chinery and conveniences for carrying on the trade. He not only produced 
an excellent product but was also careful and systematic in the manage- 
ment of his business, never following fictitious methods but stuck to that 
which is honorable, laborious and true in winning success. His record has 
proved that an honestly conducted business in accordance with the great 



26 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

laws which control all legitimate trade will grow and devleop and return 
rich reward. In 1876 he admitted John Shumacher to a partnership under 
the firm name of Reis & Shumacher. Gradually enlarging their plant and 
at all times watchful of every detail of the trade, their business at length 
extended in large measure over the west, northwest, the south and the east. 
In 1852 Mr. Reis was united in marriage to Miss Magdalen Keyser and 
unto them were born two children: Isabel, who became Mrs. Schumacher 
and died leaving one daughter, now Mrs. Emma Mann; and Qara, the wife 
of Dr. Jerome of Evansville. Since the death of her husband, Mrs. Reis 
has continuously occupied the beautiful home on First avenue, which he 
erected. Mr. Reis passed away on the ist of January, 1884, but his name 
is yet honored by those with whom he came in contact while -an active factor 
in the affairs of the world. He took a helpful interest in the Catholic church, 
served as one of its trustees, contributed generously to its support and aided 
in establishing a church for colored people in Evansville. He was always 
very charitable, giving freely to the needy and extending a helping hand to 
those who deserved assistance. 



WILLIAM O. FERGUSON. 

Among the young business men of Evansville who are numbered with 
her native sons and whose life work is a source of satisfaction and pride to 
the city is William O. Ferguson, who was here born on the 12th of June, 
1873, a son of James Russell and Ella Frances (Lyon) Ferguson, of whom 
mention is made elsewhere in this volume. His education was acquired in 
private schools of this city and in Bethany College of West Virginia. He 
left college at the age of nineteen years and went to Detroit, Michigan, where 
he was employed by Isaac C. Baxter, of the Detroit Gas Company. After 
spending two years in that city he returned to Evansville and here started 
in the insurance business with the Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company. 
Gradually he has been advanced in this connection, as he has given proof of 
his business ability, sagacity and sound judgment, until he is now general 
agent for Southern Indiana of the Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company 
of Philadelphia. When he took hold of the business there were only about 
twenty thousand dollars insurance written. Today the policies represent 
over two million dollars. The success of the enterprise is attributable to the 
close application and unfaltering industry of Mr. Ferguson, who has care- 
fully systematized the various departments of the work and gained success 
by a persistency of purpose and honesty of method that is above question. 
In addition to his activity in insurance lines he is now receiver for the 
Chandler Coal Company. 

On the 17th of December, 1895, Mr. Ferguson was united in marriage 
to Miss Meta M. Decker, who passed away on the 14th, of April, 1905, 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 27 

leaving an only son, Russell Owen, now eleven years of age. Mrs. Ferguson 
was a daughter of Frederick G. and Elizabeth Decker. Her father is a 
well known representative of commercial interests, being engaged in the 
insurance business under the name of Decker & Ferguson. 

Mr. Ferguson holds membership in the First Christian church and is 
prominent in various fraternal and social organizations. A Knight Templar 
Mason, he belongs to La Valette Commandery, No. 1 5 ; is a charter member 
of the Evansville Country Glub; and also holds membership with the 
Crescent, Press and Gridiron Clubs. One of the leaders in the ranks of the 
democratic party in Evansville, he was president of the Young Men's Demo- 
cratic Club for four years and built it up from a membership of fifty to over 
six hundred. His opinions carry weight in the local councils of his party 
and he is a young man whose strong character, business and executive abil- 
ity and whose high purposes are such as to win for him a large personal 
following. 



NICHOLAS KEIL, JR. 



Both mercantile and agricultural interests claim the attention of Nicho- 
las Keil, Jr., a native son of Vanderburg county, his birth having occurred 
in Evansville, November 28, 1865. His name indicates his German lineage 
and in his life record are displayed some of the sterling traits of his Teu- 
tonic ancestry. His parents were Nicholas and Elizabeth Keil, both na- 
tives of Germany, whence they crossed the Atlantic to America, settling in 
Vanderburg county when the work of general improvement and progress 
had been carried forward here to only a slight extent. Mr. Keil opened a 
store in Evansville and continued in the business for about eighteen years, 
when he removed to Center township and bought one hundred and three 
acres of land. With characteristic energy he began the development of the 
farm, carrying on general agricultural pursuits for a quarter of a century, 
when, feeling that his capital was sufficient to enable him to live retired, 
he put aside business cares and returned to Evansville, where he is now 
making his home with his daughter, Mrs. Barbara Whittmer. His wife 
died in April, 1901. 

Nicholas Keil, Jr., was reared in Evansville and upon the old home 
farm, remaining with his parents up to the time of his marriage, which 
important event in his life was celebrated on the ist of December, 1887, 
the lady of his choice being Miss Katherina Adler, a daughter of Mathias 
and Maggie A'dler, both natives of Germany. Having been reared to the 
occupation of farming, Nicholas Keil turned his attention to that pursuit 
in order to maintain the little home which he set up following his marriage. 
He rented sixty acres of land and began the cultivation of the fields, which 
because of his careful and practical methods brough forth good crops an- 



28 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

nually. He also engaged in the dairy business for about eight years but 
on the expiration of that period came to Stringtown and opened a store 
which he has since conducted, being one of the leading factors in the pro- 
motion of commercial activity in this community. About seven years ago 
he bought the old home place, which he has since been operating and thus 
both commercial and agricultural interests claim his time and attention. 
In business affairs his judgment is sound, his insight keen and his enter- 
prise unfaltering and thus he is making steady progress along those lines 
to which he has elected to devote his energies. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Keil have been born seven children, namely : Otto 
N., twenty-two years of age; Edward, twenty years of age; Frank, eight- 
een years of age; Christ, who died in 1894; Julius, who has reached the 
age of fourteen years; Theodore, who passed away in 1898; and Henry, 
a lad of ten years. Mr. Keil and the family attend the Lutheran church 
and he makes liberal contributions toward its support. His political views 
are in accord with the principles of the republican party and his fraternal 
relations are with the aerie of Eagles at Evansville. His entire life has 
been passed in Vanderburg county, where he is now well known, and his 
strongly pronounced traits of character are such as have gained for him 
the friendly regard and good will of those with whom he has been brought 
in contact. 



WILLIAM D. DANIELS. 

Throughout the period of his manhood William D. Daniels was a 
resident of Indiana and from 1891 until his death made his home in Evans- 
ville, where he was widely known in connection with the lumber trade. 
He was born in Marietta, Ohio, September 11, 1834, and had back of him 
an ancestry honorable and distinguished. On each side there were names 
that figured prominently upon the pages of history. His grandfather was 
sailing master on the sloop Hornet when she captured the English brig, 
Peacock, in the war of 1812 and history says it was due to the skilful hand- 
ling of the Hornet by its commander that the victory was achieved. Ste- 
phen Daniels, the father of William D. Daniels, was a railroad bridge 
builder who through much of his life was connected with the operative 
branch of the service. He married Sophia Warren, a direct descendent 
of General Joseph Warren, the gallant commander and hero of Bunker 
Hill. She was, however, directly related to one of the signers of the 
Declaration of Independence.. 

Spending his youthful days in his parents' home, William D. Daniels 
attended the public schools of Ohio and when a young man came to In- 
diana, settling at Princeton, where he joined his brother Joseph in building 
bridges. They continued in that business for a number of years and had 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 29 

the contract for constructing many of the bridges in Vanderburg and ad- 
joining counties. At length Mr. Daniels established a lumberyard at 
Princeton and as he prospered in that undertaking extended the field of 
his activities to include the conduct and management of lumber enterprises 
in Kentucky and Arkansas and the operation of sawmills in those states. 
He was the first man to introduce piling into this section of Indiana and 
met with a high degree of prosperity in that branch of his business. In 
1891 he came to Evansville to live that he might better look after his piling 
work in Kentucky, the management of which occupied his attention until his 
demise. Whatever he undertook he carried resolutely forward to successful 
completion. His diligence was unfaltering, his judgment sound and his 
sagacity clear. Studying the indications of the piling trade he met the de- 
mands of the public and by honorable dealing secured an extensive and 
gratifying patronage. 

In 1873 in Gibson county, Indiana, Mr. Daniels was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Katherine B. Hudelson, a daughter of James Hudelson, a 
merchant of that county, who later engaged in shipping produce to New 
Orleans. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Daniels was born one child, Bessie, now 
the wife of George Kruger. 

In politics Mr. Daniels was always active as a supporter of the republi- 
can party, recognizing that it was the duty as well as the privilege of every 
American citizen to exercise his right of franchise in support of measures 
which he deemed most beneficial to the general weal. He was charitable 
and benevolent, ever ready to extend a helping hand and realizing from 
his own experience, for he was a self-made man, the difficulties of work- 
ing one's way upward; he often spoke an encouraging word or gave sub- 
stantial assistance to those who were endeavoring to secure honorable ad- 
vancement. He died August 7, 1905, and Evansville mourned the loss of 
a representative and valued citizen, widely recognized as a man of honor 
and of strong force of character. He had passed the seventy-first mile- 
stone on life's journey and the years allotted to him were filled with good 
deeds and honorable acts. 



JOSEPH H. BRANDIS 



A residence of more than half a century in Vanderburg county has made 
Joseph H. Brandis well known to its settlers, and friends and neighbors 
regard him well worthy of their esteem and good will. He has made farming 
his life work and is carefully cultivating his fields, comprised within the 
boundaries of a well kept farm in Perry township. It was in this township 
that he was bom September 27, 1858, his parents being Joseph H. and Maria 
Brandis. No event of special importance occurred to vary the routine of 
farm life for him in his boyhood and youth. As his age and strength per- 



30 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

mitted he worked in the fields, following the plow or gathering the harvest 
in the summer months, while in the winter seasons he attended the public 
schools, acquainting himself with those branches of learning which are re- 
garded as indispensable factors in the conduct of business. After reaching 
man's estate he began farming on his own account and his time and energies 
are now devoted to the further development and improvement of a tract of 
land of forty-two acres, which he owns. In early spring he plants the seeds 
that in late autumn are gathered in a bounteous harvest. His work is diH- 
gently carried on and whatever success he has achieved and enjoyed is the 
result of his own labors. 

On the 13th of March, 1888, Mr. Brandis was married to Miss Anna 
Sommers, a daughter of William and Mary Sommers, and unto them has 
been born a son, Walter S. Brandis, bom October 30, 1889. Both Mr. and 
Mrs. Brandis are well known in the community and have the kindly regard 
of all with whom they have been brought in contact. His political faith is 
that of the democratic party but, while he always votes for its men and 
measures, he does not seek office. 



EDWIN C. HENNING. 



Edwin C. Henning, a member of the Evansville bar since 1900 and a 
representative of the legal profession in Indiana since 1894, was born in 
Cannelton, this state, January 20, 1874. His father, William Henning, was 
a native of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, born on the 17th of December, 1824. 
He was educated in Germany, after which he returned to America at the 
age of twenty-two years, and, settling in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, he 
there engaged in the practice of law until 1866, when he removed to Can- 
nelton, Indiana. Opening his law office in that place he was soon estab- 
lished with a good clientage that enabled him to figure prominently in con- 
nection with the work of the courts of this state. His keen insight, his 
careful analysis, his inductive reasoning and his logical conclusions were 
strong forces in his success. His death occurred in 1899. 

Spending his youthful days in his parents' home, Edwin C. Henning 
devoted his time largely to the acquirement of an education in the public 
and high schools, completing the course there by graduation with the class 
of 1887. He then attended the University of Michigan, pursuing his 
studies in both the literary and law departments and was graduated LL. B. 
on the 24th of June, 1894. Immediately afterward he returned to Cannel- 
ton and was admitted to practice in the district and supreme courts of 
Indiana and in the federal courts. He joined his father, with whom he 
was associated until the latter's death. He continued in practice in Can- 
nelton until 1900, when he removed to Evansville, where he has since been 
accorded a large and distinctively representative clientage. He has made a 




EDWIN C. IlEXXIXG 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 33 

specialty of corporation and insurance law, and few men are better quali- 
fied in these departments of jurisprudence. His ability, his strength of 
character and his high qualifications are manifest in the results which fol- 
low his work in the courts, nor is his ability limited to the strict path of 
his profession, for in other business Hues his judgment is sound, his dis- 
crimination keen and his plans practical. He is now president of the Web- 
ster Stone Company, of Webster, Kentucky, and one of the directors of the 
Newman Sewer Construction Company. 

Mr. Henning belongs to the Vanderburg County Bar Association. His 
connection with the republican party and with St. Paul's Episcopal church 
indicate something of his interests in citizenship and the principles that 
govern his life. His time and talents have been used advantageously and 
his record is being written in tangible currents of success. 



WILLIAM DAVIDSON. 



Scotland, the land of the crag and glen, of mountain peak and mountain 
lake, of lowland hills and plains, of liberty, poetry and song, of religious 
educational zeal, the home of Wallace and Bruce, of Scott and Bums, whose 
heroes and airs have honored Britain's flag on every battlefield, has also 
been the ancestral home of many of America's best and most distinguished 
men. The conditions of today do not call for the heroism that was displayed 
on battlefields or in contests of clan with clan, but the same dominant spirit 
of loyalty, enterprise and perseverance are today manifest in the sons of 
bonny Scotland. These are the characteristics that were recognized as 
strongly marked traits in WilHam Davidson, whose business ability brought 
him to a prominent position in the industrial circles of Evansville, where he 
continued his residence to the time of his death on the 22d of May, 1908. 

His birth occurred in Perthshire, Scotland, December 19, 1831, his 
parents being William and Janet (Mitchell) Davidson. He continued a 
resident of his native country until after the death of his parents, when with 
his brothers and sisters he came to America in 1866, coming direct to the 
home of his uncle, Robert Mitchell of Princeton, Ind.- He entered the shop 
of Josiah Tichenor, at Princeton, where he learned the machinist's trade, 
and after completing his apprenticeship moved to Evansville. Here his 
ability, natural and acquired, enabled him to secure employment under 
Henry F. Blount, of the Blount Plow Company, and that he was capable, 
efficient and loyal is indicated by the fact that he remained with that house 
for thirty years, filling various positions from that of the subordinate helper 
to one of the managers. He was given a position of management in 1886 
and he contributed not a little to the success of the business through his 
inventive genius and his recognition of the needs of the agricultural world, 
at times anticipating such needs and therefore meeting them as they arose. 



34 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

He studied every phase of the business and the conditions bearing upon the 
trade, and the company recognized his work in the promotion given him. 

In 1874 Mr. Davidson was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Ruston, 
a daughter of WiUiam Ruston, who came from England when a young man 
and engaged in the grocery business in Evansville, spending the remainder of 
his days in this city. Here he married Miss Martha Peck, also a native of 
England. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Davidson there were bom four sons and two 
daughters : William R., a practicing physician ; Harry R. ; John M. ; Tom R. ; 
Mrs. William E. Baker ; and Mrs. Harry Johnson. 

Mr. Davidson was always recognized as a noble Christian, whose life was 
in consistent harmony with his profession as a member of the Walnut street 
Presbyterian church. He was active in the welfare of the city, cooperating 
in many measures for the general good, and while he was a worker in 
political circles in support of the republican party, he was never an aspirant 
for office. His labors were given freely in support of the principles in which 
he believed, his rectitude of character, his unfaltering diligence, his loyalty 
to friendship all combining to make him one of the valued and respected 
residents of his adopted city. 



OTTO L. KLAUSS. 



Otto L. Klauss, filling the office of county treasurer, to which position 
he was elected in 1906, is one of Evansville's native sons, whose life record 
stands in contradistinction to the old adage that a prophet is never without 
honor save in his own country, for Mr. Klauss has so directed his efforts 
and energies here that his fellow townsmen accord him confidence and re- 
spect and proved their willingness to trust him with important public duties 
by electing him to the office which he now fills. 

His parents were Captain Martin and Fredericka Klauss. The name indi- 
cates the German origin of the family. The father was born in the Rhine 
province of Germany in January, 1836, and pursued his education in that 
country. In accordance with the military laws of his native land he served 
in the German army and in 1848 came to the United States, choosing Evans- 
ville as his place of location. He became identified with the business in- 
terests of the city as proprietor of a hotel at the comer of Seventh and 
Locust streets and continued in that field of labor until the outbreak of the 
Civil war in 1861, when he organized the First Indiana Battery. His previous 
military experience now served him in good stead and enabled him to soon 
develope discipline and skill among new recruits. He served until 1865, 
participating in some of the hotly contested engagements of the war, and 
throughout the entire period never faltered in his allegiance to the cause he 
espoused. Following his return home he became one of the active factors 
in political circles and held some of the local offices, including that of justice 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 35 

of the peace, in which position he continued until his death in 1891. His 
decisions were strictly fair and impartial and made his record as judge of 
the justice court a most creditable one. 

At the usual age Otto L. Klauss entered the public schools, wherein he 
pursued his studies until he left the high school at the age of sixteen years 
to enter the old National Bank as messenger. There he worked his way 
upward to the position of teller, in which capacity he was serving when, in 
1890, he resigned and went to St. Louis, where he became receiving teller 
in the Continental National Bank. After four years he returned and for 
four years filled the office of deputy under County Treasurer Laval, also 
under Philip Euler until 1898 and four years under John P. Walker. In 
1906 he was elected to the position of county treasurer and has since con- 
tinued in the office, for which he was well qualified by his years of previous 
experience as deputy. He has proved himself a most faithful custodian of 
the public funds and during his term interest has been turned back to the 
city and county, amounting to fifty thousand dollars or more, so that the 
office is now much more than self sustaining. He has been allied with the 
republican party since age conferred upon him the right of franchise and 
while he possesses a laudable ambition, which is the incentive for faithful 
service in public office, he is also a believer in that ideal party organization 
which has its root in the belief that such an organization should be formed 
of those who band themselves together for the promotion of the common 
good. 

On the 29th of June, 1904, Mr. Klauss was married, in Evansville, to 
Miss Myrtle Stewart. They attend the Protestant churches of the city and 
Mr. Klauss is a member of the Masonic and Elks lodges, his affiliation being 
with Reed lodge, F. & A. M., and Reed chapter, R. A. M. With the excep- 
tion of a brief period spent in St. Louis he has remained continuously a 
resident of this city, and the record which he has made throughout the entire 
period is such a one as has engraved his name creditably and honorably upon 
the pages of business and political history in Vanderburg county. 

1326967 

CHARLES E. LAUGHLIN, M. D. 

A capable member of the medical profession, the work which Dr. 
Charles E. Laughlin is today accomplishing as medical superintendent of 
the state insane asylum at Evansville entitles him to more than passing 
notice and recognition. The special study which he had made of mental 
disorders well qualified him for the work which he undertook, and in its 
accomplishment he has constantly manifested a progressive spirit that has 
placed the institution in advance of many which are caring for this class 
of unfortunates. He was born in Lawrence county, Indiana, October 12, 
1855. His father. Dr. Edmund D. Laughlin, still living at the age of eighty- 



36 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

three years, was one of the pioneer physicians of Orleans, Indiana, who, 
after graduation from the Miami Medical College and Bellevue Hospital 
Medical College, practiced for years at Orleans but is now living retired. 
His wife died only a few months ago at the age of eighty years. 

Dr. Charles E. Laughlin, after mastering the branches of study in the 
public schools of Orleans, began preparation for the profession, which he 
is now following, as a student in the Miami Medical College, and later 
was associated with his father in practice until the ist of June, 1903. 

On that date he came to Evansville, having been solicited to take charge, 
as medical superintendent, of the state insane asylum. He found the in- 
stitution in bad shape, but the work of change and improvement was at once 
begun, according to a high standard which he had set up. He had made 
a study of insanity and recognized that many former methods of treatment 
had become antiquated and should be relegated to the regions of the past ; 
that study and investigation have brought to light new truths concerning 
the treatment of the mentally disordered and that surroundings contribut- 
ing to the upbuilding of the general health must of necessity constitute a 
feature in the cures which it is hoped may be effected. He at once changed 
the old order of serving meals to the patients in the wards by establishing 
a congregate dining room, installing two new dining rooms which are mod- 
ern in every respect, each seating three hundred and twenty people at one 
time. He improved the entire heating system, installing a first class steam 
heating plant. He also installed a new power plant and this with the heat- 
ing plant has a ten hundred and fifty horse power engine. Electrical appli- 
ances and dynamos for lighting have been introduced and two new direct 
motion pumps, each pumping one hundred and seventy-five thousand gal- 
lons of water daily through a softening tank. He built a model laundry 
in which the work is done by electrical machinery, even electric irons being 
used. He built a fine new modern bakery, supplied with electrical mixing 
machines, while all baking, roasting, etc., are done here. He likewise in- 
stalled a septic sewage disposal plant, using bacteria consumption, and 
plans are now completed for the erection of a new hospital for the sick with 
appliances for the application of modern treatment for acute cases of in- 
sanity, an appropriation of sixty thousand dollars having been made for 
this purpose. Dr. Laughlin has also let a contract for a model sanitary 
dairy, plans to purchase a herd of Holstein cattle which he will place upon 
an eighty acre tract of land that has been added to the farm for this pur- 
pose, and has constantly been building to and improving the institution 
since coming here. He has built a sanitary pig pen, which has entirely done 
away with sickness among the hogs. In fact he has put forth every effort 
to promote health conditions that every available aid to the care of the 
patients may be used. 

In 1878, in Mitchell, Indiana, Dr. Laughlin was married to Miss Emma 
Brown, and they now have three chilren and two grandchildren. Their 
daughter Ruth is the wife of Michael Mayer, of Covington, Indiana. Their 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 37 

son, Dr. Edmund Laughlin, is a practicing dentist of Evansville, and the 
younger daughter Genevieve is at home. 

The family are members of the Christian church and Dr. Laughlin is a 
republican in his political views, always giving stalwart support to the party. 
He stands as a splendid representative of that class of physicians to whom 
the profession makes strong appeal from other than the commercial side. 
He is in thorough sympathy with the movements to disseminate knowledge 
that shall prevent disease and hasten its extermination, and the humanitarian 
principles which prevail in the Evansville asylum mark him as one whose 
sympathy for his fellowmen is of a deep and practical character. 



JOSEPH H. MILLER. 



The constant watchfulness and executive ability which Joseph H. Miller 
displays as general superintendent of the Blount Plow Works has won him 
classification with the representative business men of Evansville. He has 
been thus connected with industrial interests in this city since June 20, 1908. 
He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, December 4, 1868, and is a son of Joseph H. 
and Catharine Miller, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania, the 
former born in Lancaster and the latter in Reading. The father removed 
from the Keystone state to Cleveland, Ohio, in 1861 and became superinten- 
dent for the house of Altman, Taylor & Company, manufacturers of engines 
and harvest machinery. Later the plant was removed to Mansfield, Ohio, 
and he continued in connection therewith until his death, which occurred 
when he was forty-seven years of age. 

Sent as a pupil to the public schools, Joseph H. Miller therein continued 
his studies until he had completed the high-school course at the age of 
seventeen years. Going to Canton, Ohio, he was employed at the grain 
elevator of John Patten for four months and later secured a position in the 
foundry of the Bucher & Gibbs Plow Company. Realizing the fact that 
there is no excellence without labor, he determined to win promotion by 
making his services of value to his employers. He thoroughly mastered 
every task assigned to him and his efficiency and faithfulness gained him 
advancement from time to time until he was made superintendent, acting in 
that capacity until 1908. The latter year witnessed his arrival in Evansville, 
where he became general superintendent of the Blount Plow Works. His 
service in this connection has been entirely satisfactory to the officers of the 
company, which manufactures a line of plows and riding cultivators. In this 
connection Mr. Miller has supervision over one hundred workmen. Under 
his care the conditions of the factory have been greatly improved, new 
machinery has been installed and the company is now adding to its present 
line of implements, extending its output to include riding and walking sulky 
plows. Their business extends all over the United States and into foreign 



38 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

lands as well. Mr. Miller's practical experience in mechanical lines well 
qualifies him to direct the labors of others who are engaged in such work. 
Moreover, he has the ability to harmonize discordant elements and to coordi- 
nate forces, and in his management he loses sight of no detail of the business. 

On the 19th of April 1892, Mr. Miller was married in Canton, Ohio to 
Miss Wagoner, and they have two children, Laura Louise and Joseph H., 
aged respectively ten and four years, the former now a student in the schools 
of Evansville. 

The parents have become well known here during their brief residence 
in the city and have already gained many friends. Mr. Miller belongs to 
Reed Lodge, A. F. & A. M., and also holds membership relations with the 
Knights of Pythias and the Independent Order of Foresters. Since age 
conferred upon him the right of franchise he has voted with the republican 
party and believes that its principles contain the best elements of good gov- 
ernment. The position to which he has attained in the business world rep- 
resents the fit utilization of his time, talents and opportunities and proves 
that success is ambition's answer. 



HON. JOHN W. BOEHNE. 

The life of the Hon. John W. Boehne stands in contradistinction to the 
old adage that "A prophet is never without honor save in his own country," 
for in the county of his nativity, where he has always resided, Mr. Boehne 
has so directed his labors and improved his time and purpose that he has 
gained an enviable position in the public regard and has won honors that 
are only conferred in recognition of true worth and merit. He is today a 
prominent factor in both business and political circles, being vice president 
of the Indiana Stove Works and member of congress from his district. 

His birth occurred in Scott township, Vanderburg county, on the 28th 
of October, 1856, his parents being Gerhard and Elizabeth Boehne. The 
father was born in Hanover, Germany, November 2, 1824, and in 1842 
came to America with his parents, crossing the Atlantic in one of the old 
time sailing vessels, which dropped anchor in the harbor of Baltimore. 
From that point they proceeded westward, going by canal to Pittsburg and 
then floating down the Ohio river with Evansville as their destination. 
Soon afterward they settled in the northern part of the county and Ger- 
hard Boehne there became the owner of land upon which he lived and 
carried on general farming until his death, which occurred on the 1st of 
June, 1886. He was one of the early settlers of the county and for more 
than four decades was associated with its agricultural interests and devel- 
opment. 

John W. Boehne pursued his education in the district schools and in 
the parochial school of the Lutheran church until fifteen years of age, when 




JOHN W. BOEHXK 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 41 

he began work upon his father's farm. In vacation periods he had prev- 
iously become somewhat famiUar with the labors of the fields and he con- 
tinued to assist his father until sixteen years of age, when, believing that 
he would find city life and commercial interests more congenial, he came 
to Evansville in June, 1873, and secured a position in a grocery store, 
acting as driver on the delivery wagon and also as clerk. He received in 
compensation for his services ten dollars per month and his board until 
1875. He then secured a more lucrative and responsible position with 
Thomas Scantlin & Son, who were engaged in the foundry business, Mr. 
Boehne remaining with them as bookkeeper until i88r, when his initiative 
spirit found expression in the organization of the firm of Shrader, Fischer 
& Boehne for the purpose of manufacturing stoves. This business has 
since been carried on although reorganized under the name of the Indiana 
Stove Works. Mr. Boehne was elected vice president in January, 1887. 
He has since bent his energies to administrative direction and executive 
control and the growth and success of the enterprise is attributable largely 
to his well formulated plans, his initiative spirit, and his careful direction 
of the interests of the house both in the operative and sales department. 

For many years Mr. Boehne concentrated his energies upon his busi- 
ness affairs with no thought nor desire for public office, and it was a mat- 
ter of surprise to him when, in 1897, he opened a local paper which con- 
tained an account of his nomination as candidate for the position of coun- 
cilman at large. This expression of a public desire for his service in office 
awakened his sense of public obligation and he entered the race and was 
elected. At the close of his term he was reelected in 1899 and in 1901 he 
was chosen president of the council. He presided over its deliberations 
and exercised his official prerogative in support of every measure and move- 
ment which he deemed of significant value to the city's welfare. In 1901 
he received his party's nomination as mayoralty candidate but at the elec- 
tion was defeated by eighty-six votes. In 1905 he was renominated and 
defeated his opponent by a vote of one thousand five hundred and ninety. 
He thus served from January i, 1905, until March i, 1909, when he re- 
signed as chief executive of the city to take his seat in congress, to which 
he had been elected in the fall of 1908. His political service has demon- 
strated the fact that the trust reposed in him was well merited. He has 
ever manifested a public-spirited devotion to the general good that none 
have questioned, and his advocacy of many progressive measures has 
proven of material benefit to the city. 

On the 26th of November, 1885, in Evansville, Mr. Boehne was united 
in marriage to Miss Emilie Ide, and with the passing of the years their 
home has been blessed with five children, namely: Elizabeth and Esther, 
both of whom are proficient in art and music ; Laura, attending high school ; 
and J. W., Jr., aged fifteen years, and Edna, both students of the high 
school. All are yet under the parental roof. 



42 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Mr. Boehne is a member of the Lutheran church, and his life has ever 
been guided by principles which require no explanation and seek no dis- 
guise. He has won well earned fame and distinction, possessing much 
natural ability, and has used his talents not only for his own advancement 
but for the welfare of the city and district in which he makes his home. 
His party fealty is not grounded on partisan prejudice, and he therefore 
enjoys the respect and confidence of all of his associates, irrespective of 
party. 



JAMES RUSSELL FERGUSON. 

A record of the representative citizens of Evansville would be incomplete 
were there failure to make definite reference to James Russell Ferguson, 
who for forty-two years has resided in this city, during which period he 
has been closely associated with its business enterprise and activity and 
many of its progressive public measures. He was born in Coahoma county, 
Mississippi, September 3, 1847, ^ son of Thomas Campbell and Lucinda D. 
(Carr) Ferguson, natives of Livingston county, Kentucky, and Lauderdale 
county, Alabama, respectively. The father died about 1849, when only 
thirty-four years of age, and the mother passed away in Mississippi, April 
21, 1885, having survived her husband for thirty-six years. 

James Russell Ferguson began his education in the country schools of 
his native state and afterward attended the public schools of Helena, Arkan- 
sas, and Evansville, Indiana. He came to this city in 1868 and for ten years 
thereafter was associated with the firm of N. F. Carr & Company in the 
capacity of bookkeeper and commercial traveler. Subsequently he engaged 
in the grocery business for two years and then sold out, after which he 
turned his attention to manufacturing interests as a member of the Crescent 
City Chair Company, with which he was associated for three years. On the 
expiration of that period he was called to public office, being elected city clerk 
in 1884 by a majority of five hundred. He was again chosen to the office in 
1887 by a majority of thirty-five. That year there was a republican land- 
slide in Evansville and the personal popularity of Mr. Ferguson and the con- 
fidence reposed in him by his fellow townsmen were indicated in the fact 
that he was the only man elected on the democratic ticket. In i8go he was 
again chosen to the office and received endorsement of his capabiHty and 
fidelity during his two previous terms in a majority of twelve hundred. After 
nine years' service he retired from the position as he had entered it — with 
the confidence and good will of all. Again becoming an active factor in the 
business circles of the city, he was connected with the Heilman Plow Com- 
pany, now the Vulcan Plow Company, and in March, 1896, he turned his 
attention to the fire insurance business, in which he is now engaged. He 
stands as one of the prominent representatives of insurance interests in this 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 43 

city and has developed a business of large proportions as the result of his 
close application, keen sagacity and unfaltering energy. His standing in the 
business circles of the city is indicated in the fact that for two years he was 
elected to the presidency of the Evansville Business Association, serving as 
chief executive officer in 1907 and again in 1908. 

On the 26th of September, 1871, Mr. Ferguson was married to Miss Ella 
Frances Lyon, a daughter of Matthew S. and Sarah (Frost) Lyon. Mrs. 
Ferguson was born in Kentucky, on the 18th of January 1846, and her 
parents were also natives of that state. On the 29th of August, 1884, Mrs. 
Lyon's mother and two sisters were lost on the steamer Belmont, which was 
capsized during a cyclone in transferring passengers from Evansville to 
Henderson. Mrs. Ferguson is a descendant of General Lyon and others of 
the name who were early settlers of Kentucky. Her ancestors were the 
founders of the town of Eddyville and also of Lyon county. Mrs. Ferguson 
has been very prominent in the social circles of Evansville and for a quarter 
of a century has been president of the Ladies Aid Society of the First 
Christian church, which position she stills fills. She has also been president 
for many years of the Fitzhugh Lee Chapter of the Daughters of the Con- 
federacy, the only chapter north of the Mason and Dixon line. Any good 
work done in the name of charity or religion is sure to receive her support 
and cooperation and her liberal culture and innate refinement well qualify 
her for the position of leadership which she occupies in good works and also 
in the social life of the city. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Ferguson have been born 
three children of whom two are living, William Owen and Glenn. The lat- 
ter is the wife of Charles A. Ecker, of Terra Haute, Indiana. A little 
daughter, Fannie, died at the age of four years. The parents are members 
of the First Christian church and have ever been most helpful in the various 
lines of church work. 

Mr. Ferguson also belongs to the Knights of Pythias fraternity and is a 
stalwart advocate of democracy. He is today regarded as one of the fore- 
most citizens of Evansville and while he has made a place for himself among 
the successful business men his poularity is due to his genial manner, cordial 
disposition, deference to the opinion of others and genuine personal worth. 



THOMAS J. ROLLET. 



Thomas J. Rollet is a representative of one of the old families of Van- 
derburg county, represented here for more than half a century. He was bom 
in Perry township, April 3, 1866, and is a son of Joseph and Sophia Rollet, 
who are mentioned elsewhere in this volume. When about six years of age 
he became a pupil in the district schools near his father's home and the 
pleasures of the playground and the work of the fields also claimed a part 
of his time and attention. He learned the value of industry, economy and 



44 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

integrity as factors in business success when in early manhood and these have 
always constituted elements of his business life. In connection with general 
farming he has engaged in contracting and building, having much mechanical 
ability that found expression in the mastery of the carpenter's trade. He is 
likewise a factor in financial circles, being now one of the directors of the 
Howell Bank. 

On the 28th of November, 1890, Mr. Rollet was married to Miss Kate 
Speaker, a daughter of Joseph and Mary Speaker. Unto them were born 
two children, William and Maggie, but they had the misfortune to lose their 
little daughter. Their religious faith is that of the German Catholic church 
and in his political views Mr. Rollet is a democrat. He has lived continu- 
ously in this county nor sought success in other districts, for he believes that 
good advantages are here accorded and that this is so is evidenced in his 
own success. Gradually he has worked his way upward in business lines 
and whatever he has undertaken has brought to him good returns by reason 
of his perseverance and capable management. 



WILLIAM REISTER. 



The period of sixteen years which covers the connection of William 
Reister with the Vanderburg county bar chronicles his steady rise in the 
profession until at the present time he enjoys a large and distinctively 
representative clientage. He was born in Gibson county, Indiana, April 
3, 1866, and is a son of Christian and Katharine Reister. The father was 
born in Baden, Germany, April 25, 1824, and was a young man of twenty- 
five years when in 1849 he crossed the Atlantic to America, landing at 
New Orleans, whence he made his way up the Mississippi river to St. Louis. 
He enlisted in the regular army, becoming a member of Company E, Sec- 
ond Regiment of Artillery, and at the outbreak of the Civil war in 1861 
he was commissioned captain of Company D, Thirty-second Indiana Vol- 
unteer Infantry, with which he was connected until 1865, when he was 
honorably discharged by reason of the close of the war. His was a credi- 
table military record, characterized by the faithful performance of every 
duty whether called to the picket line or to the firing line. After the war 
ended he returned to Gibson county, Indiana, where he engaged in the 
manufacture of brick and in contract work of that character, continuing 
in the business until his death, which occurred in March, 1907. 

Reared in his native county, William Reister was a pupil in the public 
and high schools to the time of his graduation from the latter with the class 
of 1882. He then went to Cynthiana, Indiana, where he was associated 
with his brother in a general mercantile store until 1892. Going to Bloom- 
ington, Indiana, he entered upon preparation for the practice of law as a 
student in the law department of the state university, from which he was 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 47 

graduated LL. B. in 1894. Admitted to practice in the state and federal 
courts upon passing the required examination at Indianapolis, he at once 
opened an office in Evansville and has been very successful in his profes- 
sion. He manifests unfaltering loyalty to the interests of his clients and in 
the preparation of his cases is very thorough, while his logical arguments, 
clear deductions and sound reasoning are the elements of his success at the 
bar. 

In May, 1889, Mr. Reister was united in marriage at Mount Vernon, 
Indiana, to Miss Mamie Dunn, who died in January, 1908. He was mar- 
ried in Evansville, in November, 1909, to Miss Mamie Goodge. His five 
children are Ruth, now Mrs. PfefTer, of Mount Vernon, Indiana; Wilma, 
a high school student; Hilda and William, who are attending the public 
schools; and Isabel, at home. 

Mr. Reister is a democrat in his political views and a Cumberland Pres- 
byterian in religious faith. He belongs to the Modern Woodmen camp, to 
the Court of Honor and to the National Union and through these associa- 
tions has broadened his acquaintance and won the high regard of his fellow 
members. 



WALTER S. WILLIAMS. 

There was a period in the latter half of the nineteenth century when it 
seemed that the great majority of young men were turning from the farms 
to the cities, feeling that greater opportunities could be had through the 
commercial and industrial business interests as well as the professions to 
be practiced in the more congested centers. In later years, however, there 
has seemed to come a reaction and many young men are convinced of the 
fact that there is no better investment to be made than in farm property. 
They are therefore turning their attention to agricultural pursuits and in 
the conduct of the business are applying scientific principles. 

In the latter class is numbered Walter S. Williams, who was born in 
Evansville, October 22, 1873, a son of George and Eliza J. (Scott) Will- 
iams, both natives of this state. The father is an engineer and worked 
at that trade for about twelve years, after which he withdrew from indus- 
trial circles and took up his abode in Scott township, Vafiderburg county, 
where he purchased forty-four acres of land. It was covered with tim- 
ber, which it was necessary to clear away that the regular farm work could 
be carried on. When that was accomplished he tilled his fields and has 
since successfully carried on general agricultural pursuits upon a tract of 
land which adjoins the home of his son Walter. He has erected a com- 
fortable residence, good barns and outbuildings and now has a well im- 
proved property, which indicates his careful supervision and the practical 
methods which he follows in its cultivation. He is regarded as one of the 



48 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

leading and representative citizens of the community. His political faith is 
that of the republican party and his religious belief that of the Methodist 
church. 

Walter S. Williams spent his youthful days with his parents to the age 
of nineteen years, when he returned to Evansville, securing a position in 
connection with the dairy business. He was thus employed for three years, 
at the end of which time he purchased a dairy and began business on his 
own account. He has since continued in that line and, removing to Scott 
township, he rented seventy-five acres of land from his aunt, Miss Mary 
Scott, since which time he has cultivated his fields. He is also the owner 
of two threshing machines and actively carries on the threshing business. 
His life is indeed a busy one, owing to the various interests which claim 
his attention and which are carefully conducted by him. Upon his farm 
he keeps eighteen head of cows, four horses and four mules and he is con- 
ducting a most excellent dairy. 

In April, 1897, Mr. WilHams was married to Miss Annie Wetchsky, 
a daughter of Charles and Helen Wetchsky, who were natives of Virginia. 
They now have five children: Howard, Marion, Helen, Belle and Edith 
Marie. The parents are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and 
Mr. Williams votes with the republican party, thus following in the poli- 
tical footsteps of his father. He is now serving as one of the trustees 
of Scott township and is active in community affairs, supporting all meas- 
ures which he deems beneficial to the district and county at large. Fra- 
ternally he is connected with the Woodmen of the World and the Modem 
Woodmen of America, his membership being in the lodges of Evansville. 



JOHN F. KUHN. 



John F. Kuhn, whose business activity contributed in large measure to 
the substantial development of Evansville, was numbered among the self- 
made men of the city, his record proving the force and effectiveness of 
industry, determination and honorable dealing in the attainment of success. 
His birth occurred on Christmas day of 1833 in the beautiful little town 
of Gettysburg, amid its setting of green hills. His parents were Jacob 
and Eliza (Hepperly) Kuhn, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania, 
the father engaging in business at Gettysburg as a carriage-maker. In 1848 
the family removed to Peoria, Illinois, and John F. Kuhn there started 
out in life for himself at the age of eighteen years. He was employed by 
others for two years and at the age of twenty established an independent 
business. He continued his residence in Peoria until 1881, when with his 
family he came to Evansville, making his home in this city until his death. 
He was identified with its interests in many helpful ways, his labors prov- 
ing a substantial element in its progress and upbuilding. For a long period 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 49 

he was a member of the firm of Bartlett, Kuhn & Company, grain dealers, 
and build up an extensive trade in that connection. Other interests also 
claimed his attention and profited by his cooperation and discriminating 
judgment. 

Mr. Kuhn was married in 1856 to Miss Elizabeth Ann Davis, of Leb- 
anon, Ohio, a daughter of Joshua M. and Rhoda (Evans) Davis, the for- 
mer a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Warren county, Ohio. 
Her father was well known as a stock dealer, largely engaged in buying 
and shipping cattle. A short time prior to his death Mr. Kuhn purchased 
a beautiful home on Upper Second street, which his widow now occupies. 
The success which he had achieved in business enabled him to leave Mrs. 
Kuhn in very comfortable financial circumstances. During the last fifteen 
years of his life he was in ill health yet he kept in close touch with his 
business which he directed from his home. 

The simplicity and beauty of his daily life as seen in his home and 
family relations constituted an even balance; his splendid business ability 
resulting in the establishment of one of the largest grain trades of the 
county. Such was the regard entertained for his business ability and dis- 
cernment that his advice was frequently sought upon business matters. His 
progressiveness was tempered by a safe conservatism that permitted no 
false steps. He was at all times a public-spirited citizen and sought by every 
means possible to promote the welfare and upbuilding of Evansville. He 
was extremely anxious that the Big Four Railroad should be extended to 
this city and put forth earnest effort in that direction but did not live to see 
the fulfillment of his hopes, although his labors were certainly an effective 
element in accomplishing the result. His political allegiance was given to 
the republican party, and he was entitled to wear the Grand Army button 
from the fact that he enlisted from Peoria at the time of the Civil war and 
did active duty at the front in defense of the stars and stripes. He was one 
of the organizers of the Elks lodge in Evansville but in later years his health 
forced him to discontinue active connection therewith. He died March 
5, 1907, to the deep regret of all who knew him. The world instinctively 
paid him that tribute of respect and esteem which is accorded to the self- 
made man whose success is the evidence of his strong character, his ability 
and unassailable business principles. 



HENRY A. WIMBERG. 



Henry A. Wimberg, general manager of one of the branches of the 
Evansville Brewing Association, the duties of which position he assumed 
on the 2d of June, 1902, was born in Evansville, on the 9th of June, 1877, 
his parents being Henry C. and Elizabeth Wimberg. His youthful days 
were spent in his father's home, during which period he attended the paro- 
chial schools of the Catholic church until fourteen years of age. He after- 



50 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ward spent one year as a student in the Jasper College at Jasper, Indiana, 
and a year in the Notre Dame University. On putting aside his text-books 
he returned to this city and for two years was employed by the Evansville 
Brewing Company in the engineering room. As his ability and fidelity 
were recognized he was promoted and filled positions in diflferent depart- 
ments and in the malt house for three years. On the expiration of that 
period he went to Chicago, where he spent four months in the employ of 
the Wahl Brewing Company. Returning, however, to Evansville, he ac- 
cepted the superintendency and general management of the brewing plant 
of which he now has charge. This is a well equipped enterprise of the 
kind. Employment is furnished to thirty-five men, eight wagons are utilized 
in the delivery and the capacity of the plant is fifty thousand barrels an- 
nually. Mr. Wimberg gives undivided attention to the business and works 
to secure the highest standard of excellence in the output. 

In his political views Mr. Wimberg has always been a democrat since 
age conferred upon him the voting privilege. He has fraternal relations 
with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, belongs to the Lieder- 
kranz and is a communicant of the Catholic church. His entire life having 
been passed in Evansville, he is well known here and among those whom 
he has met in business and social relations he has made many friends. 



JOHN MOLL. 



A goodly proportion of the citizens of Vanderburg county are of German 
nativity or lineage and the sterling traits of the Teutonic race have consti- 
tuted an important element in the upbuilding and progress of this section of 
the state. John Moll is numbered among the German-American residents of 
Center township, his birth having occurred in the fatherland in January 1845. 
His parents, Henry and Eva M. Moll, were also natives of that country, 
where they remained until 1849, when the hope of improving their financial 
condition led them to cross the Atlantic. They did not tarry on the eastern 
coast but proceeded at once into the interior of the country and became resi- 
dents of Vanderburg county, Indiana, the father purchasing a tract of land 
in Scott township. Here he at once began farming, his unfaltering energy 
being manifest in his careful cultivation of the fields up to the time of his 
death, which occurred in June, 1884. His wife survived him for about a 
year and died in April, 1885. 

John Moll was only four years of age when the family made the long 
voyage across the briny deep. His youthful days were therefore largely 
spent upon the home farm and he remained with his parents until nineteen 
years of age, when he went to Evansville, where he began learning the 
trades of blacksmithing and plow making. He was afterward employed in 
a carriage factory and learned that business but later returned to plow mak- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 51 

ing at a salary of six dollars per day — a fact which indicates his expert 
workmanship. He followed that line of business for about a year, at the 
end of which time he removed to Center township and bought land. It was 
his purpose not only to give his attention to general agricultural pursuits 
but also to carry on blacksmithing and he erected a shop for that purpose, 
continuing both lines of business until 1902, when he turned over his inter- 
ests to his son Henry. He is the owner of sixty acres of fine land under 
a high state of cultivation and well equipped with modern improvements 
which he has placed thereon. 

On the 7th of February, 1871, Mr. Moll was united in marriage to Miss 
Lena Theirse, a daughter of George and Kate (Deimert) Theirse, both of 
whom were natives of Germany. This marriage has been blessed with ten 
children : Kate, who is married and resides in Pigeon township ; Mary, like- 
wise married, who makes her home in Kratsville ; Maggie, who is married 
and lives in Evansville ; Henry J., who passed away on the 5th of December, 
1876; Henry, who is married and resides in Stringtown; Peter, who is mar- 
ried and makes his home in Montana; George, who is married and Hves in 
Evansville ; John, who is married and resides in Armstrong, Indiana ; James 
who resides in Montana with his brother ; and Joseph, at home. 

The parents are communicants of the Catholic church and Mr. Moll is a 
democrat in his political views. He has supported the party since age con- 
ferred upon him the right of franchise but has never been an office seeker, 
feeling that the demands of business should be his first consideration. His 
life has been one of diligence and perseverance and his success is the merited 
reward of his labor. 



JOSEPH W. KNOWLES. 

One of the finest country homes of Vanderburg county is the property 
of Joseph W. Knowles, a prominent agriculturist of Center township. His 
home stands in the midst of a valuable farm of two hundred and seventy- 
two acres, equipped with all the modern accessories and conveniences of a 
model farm of the twentieth century. He is one of the oldest native resi- 
dents of this part of the state, his birth having occurred in Scott township, 
Vanderburg county, on the 26th of December, 1832. He has therefore wit- 
nessed the growth and progress of this region for seventy-eight years and 
has taken active part in the work of general development. His parents, 
Charles and Mary Ann Knowles, were natives of England and on coming 
to this country settled in Evansville in 1818. Indiana had been admitted 
to the Union only the year before and the work of progress and improve- 
ment seemed scarcely begun in this region. The father was a butcher by 
trade but on coming to the United States turned his attention to farming, 
purchasing land which he cultivated and improved for about a half century. 



52 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

He died in the year 1873, having for two years survived his wife, who 
passed away in 1871. 

Joseph W. Knowles, born and reared on the old homestead, remained 
with his parents throughout their hves and afterward took charge of the 
home farm, which he has since operated. In 1880 he purchased seventy- 
five acres of land in Center township, improved this place after the most 
modern methods and now has one of the finest residences in Vanderburg 
county. All of the other buildings and equipments are in keeping with the 
home and his possessions aggregate two hundred and seventy-two acres of 
as fine farm land as can be found in Indiana. The soil is rich and pro- 
ductive and annually returns generous harvests for the care and labor be- 
stowed upon the fields. 

On the 1st of January, 1857, Mr. Knowles was married to Miss Mary 
Ann Peck, a daughter of John and Esther Peck, who were natives of Eng- 
land and in 1820 came to Vanderburg county, settling in Scott township, 
where the father secured land and carried on farming until his death. Unto 
Mr. and Mrs. Knowles have been born two sons and three daughters, 
namely: Charles A., who is married and lives in Evansville; John R., who 
is likewise married and makes his home in Evansville ; Clara, who resides 
with her parents; Gertrude Van Winkle, living in Evansville; and May, 
who died in infancy. The parents are members of the Episcopal church 
and have guided their lives by its teachings. Mr. Knowles votes with the 
republican party and is interested in its welfare but has never sought the 
honors nor emoluments of office. His success has come as the legitimate 
reward of his earnest labor and his life record is a proof of the fact that 
prosperity and an honored name may be won simultaneously. 



HENRY REIS. 



The banking business of American history has developed men of prodig- 
ious mental force and, it seems, almost indestructible physical energy — 
men who have ranked the financial system of this country with the fore- 
most among the nations of the earth. A man's genius asserts its force in 
the mastery of his work, the completeness of his undertaking. The strength 
and force of the character of Mr. Reis are manifest in the success which 
he has achieved. His history is a part — a potential part — of the banking 
and business history of commercial Evansville. The steps in his orderly 
progression are easily discernible. From youth working for his living and 
dependent on his own hands for whatever the world w^s to bring him of 
enjoyment or honors, he has reached an enviable place of business promi- 
nence and also of exalted social position. He started with nothing and 
now has almost everything that men covet as of value, and he has won it 
all by his own unaided exertions. 




HENRY REIS 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 55 

Mr. Reis was born near Mayence (Mainz), Germany, February 15, 
1847, a son of Peter and Elisabeth Reis, who in the year 1849 sailed for 
America with their family, settling in Posey county, Indiana. The father 
was a farmer by occupation and died in Parkers settlement in Posey county 
in the year 1856. 

Deprived of a father's care and support at the age of nine years, Henry 
Reis was early thrown upon his own resources. In his youthful days he 
attended the common schools until, at the age of fifteen, he secured a posi- 
tion in a drug store. Working in the day time, he attended Behm's Com- 
mercial College at night in order that a broader and more thorough educa- 
tion might better qualify him for the practical duties of life, and was grad- 
uated with the class of 1864. He also attended the night school of Pro- 
fessor S. K. Leavitt. A boy of less determination and ambition would have 
devoted his leisure hours to rest and recreation, but Mr. Reis recognized 
that he must depend upon his own exertion and ability for advancement 
and utilized every opportunity that led to promotion in business lines. 
For about three years he was employed in a drug store and then entered the 
bank of W. J. Lowry & Company in a minor position, remaining with 
that firm from the 8th of March, 1865, until 1872. In the latter year he 
became connected with the bank of which he is now the president and' 
which was then called the Evansville National Bank. In 1885 a reorgani- 
zation was effected under the name of The Old National Bank and in 
December, 1904, the name was changed to The Old State National Bank. 
From his earliest connection with the banking business Mr. Reis made 
rapid progress through close attention and hard work. He was appointed 
assistant cashier in 1873, was made cashier in 1875, was elected vice presi- 
dent and cashier in 1902 and in 1908 was called to the presidency. Un- 
faltering industry and unassailable business integrity brought him success 
and he stands today in a most promfnent and enviable position in the 
banking circles of Evansville, with which he has been connected from his 
boyhood, covering a period of forty-five years. He is not only a stock- 
holder in this institution but also in the City National Bank of Evansville 
and is vice president of the Evansville Qearing House Association. 

When he was called to the presidency of the institution of which he 
is now the head one of the local papers said : "The election of Henry Reis 
to the presidency of The Old State National Bank comes as an honor to a 
man who has won it by long and faithful service in the banking institu- 
tions of Evansville. The selection of Mr. Reis for this important post will 
be hailed with delight by every depositor as well as stockholder of the 
bank. Few men in Evansville have had as long experience in the banking 
business as he has and none more successful. Since 1865 he has filled 
various positions in the banks of the city, going to The Old State National 
when the city was in the flush of its first growth. In all these years, in 
whatever capacity, Mr. Reis has ever maintained those valuable qualifica- 
tions that make for popularity of an institution of such moment to the 



56 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

community. Under his management there is no doubt that The Old State 
National will maintain its strong place among the banking institutions of 
Evansville and be known as 'Old Gibraltar' in the future as in the past. 
The election of H. H. Ogden as cashier some months back gave a strong 
impetus to the business of the bank and now that the presidency has been 
filled so well there is no doubt of the bank's future." 

Another of the Evansville journals, commenting upon his promotion, 
wrote : "The election on Thursday of Henry Reis to be president of The 
Old State National Bank furnishes a theme of inspiration to the young 
man who aspires to high positions. Starting in as paying teller of the 
bank at a modest salary, diligent services and work well executed pro- 
cured promotion until the vice presidency of the bank was reached. Mr. 
Reis' long and valued labor for the institution and his high standing as a 
gentleman and a banker have now secured for him the election to the presi- 
dency. Courteous, experienced, a helper and encourager of young men, 
filled with civic pride and irreproachable in character, Mr. Reis is a fit 
man to head the institution. No young man can analyze the secret of the 
new president's success without reaching the decision that, by the man 
who is willing to work and believes that genius is hard work, high posi- 
tions can be attained." 

On the 9th of September, 1869, in Evansville, Mr. Reis was married 
to Miss Caroline Blass, of Erie, Pennsylvania. She is a member of a large 
family who came from Germany in i860 and settled in Erie, where her 
parents and some of the older members of the family have since died. 
Mr. and Mrs. Reis have five children living: Olga, now the wife of Gra- 
ham F. Denby, of Evansville; Alma, the wife of Sidney B. Mitchell, of 
New Orleans, Louisiana ; Katherine, the wife of Owen H. Jean, of Evans- 
ville; Henry, who is with the National Bank of Commerce of St. Louis, 
Missouri ; and Alvin C, a student in the State University at Madison, Wis- 
consin. Two children died: Arthur, in 1876; and Walter, in 1889. 

Mr. Reis is never unmindful of his duties of citizenship nor of his 
obligations to his fellowmen and in both fields his labors have been ef- 
fective forces for good. He votes with the republican party, deeming its 
principles indispensable agents of good government. His benevolent spirit 
is manifest in his helpfulness toward many individuals and also in the fact 
that he is serving as treasurer of the Rathbone Memorial Home for Old 
Ladies. He is a consistent member of St. John's church. In more strictly 
social lines he is connected with the Country Club, while fraternally he 
is a Mason and a member of the Court of Honor. He manifests practical 
activity as a member of the Evansville Business Association and belongs 
to that class who seem to find the happiness of life in the success of their 
work. In demeanor he is modest, seeking no notoriety, and his influence 
is perhaps all the more potent because it is moral rather than political and 
is wielded for the public good rather than for personal aggrandizement. 
Every business day finds him at his desk save in summer when he takes a 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 57 

short vacation with his family. His business integrity and uprightness of 
his methods is indicated in the fact that he has no enemy. While he has 
written his name in the terms of success, it is spoken by his fellow towns- 
men only in the terms of respect. Such a record should serve as a source 
of encouragement to young men, for by unremitting diligence and unas- 
sailable honesty he has advanced from the lowest to the highest position in 
the bank and has gained thereby the honor and esteem of his fellowmen. 



JOHN O'DONNELL. 

The growth and prosperity of a community are never due to a single 
individual but result from the combined efforts of many, each of whom 
bears his part through the capable conduct of individual interests. Well 
known as a factor in industrial circles in Evansville, the enterprising spirit 
and intelligently directed activities of John O'Donnell have at length 
brought him to a prominent position as secretary and treasurer of the 
O'Donnell Steam Heating Company. He was born in Pennsylvania, Sep- 
tember 4, 1864, a son of John and Helen (Connor) O'Donnell, whose 
family numbered seven children, namely: J. S., who is a building contractor 
of Minneapolis, Minnesota; Thomas S., who is with the Pennsylvania Rail- 
road Company in Pittsburg; Mrs. Mary J. Hayes, also a resident of Pitts- 
burg; Mrs. A. J. Townsend, of Sharon, Pennsylvania; Mrs. Kate Brady, 
of McDonald, Pennsylvania; Julia, who is living in Butler, Pennsylvania; 
and John, who completes the family. The father devoted his life to the 
occupation of farming until his labors were ended by death, about seven- 
teen years ago. His widow long survived him, passing away about four 
years ago. 

In the country schools John O'Donnell pursued his education to the age 
of fifteen years, spending about four months each year in mastering the 
elementary branches of learning. The remainder of the year was devoted 
to such farm work as he was fitted for, his labors and responsibilities in- 
creasing as the years passed on. Leaving school at the age of fifteen, he 
went to Pittsburg, where he was employed in a glass factory for two years. 
He afterward learned the trade of steam fitting in the house of Kelly, 
Jones & Company and subsequently went to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where 
he followed his trade for a year. He then returned to Pittsburg where 
he continued for two years and then made his way westward to Kansas 
City, Missouri, where he spent two and one-half years. In 1889 he came 
to Evansville and has since been identified with the business of this city in 
the line of his chosen occupation. He had charge of the work on the court 
house and for six years was connected with the Tennessee Range & Iron 
Company, the successors of J. T. Foley & Company. In 1896 he embarked 
in business on his own account, forming a partnership with H. G. Rotzel, 



58 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

with whom he had been connected for two years when he purchased his 
partner's interest. Four years ago he incorporated the business under the 
name of the O'Donnell Steam Heating Company, with August Koring as 
president, while Mr. O'Donnell is secretary and treasurer. The trade of 
the house extends over western Kentucky, southern Illinois and southern 
Indiana and the name of the company has become a familiar one in 
the largest and smallest towns of those districts. His business interests 
have now grown to extensive proportions owing to the capable manage- 
ment, keen discernment and unfaltering determination of one who from 
the outset of his career has been imbued with the laudable ambition to at- 
tain honorable success. 

In his political views Mr. O'Donnell is a democrat and fraternally is 
connected with the Modem Woodmen of America. He also belongs to the 
different trade organizations, to the Builders Exchange, and is constantly 
alert to note opportunities for improvement not only in his individual busi- 
ess affairs but in the commercial and industrial conditions which exist in 
Evansville and upon which the prosperity and growth of the city must 
depend. 



CHARLES EULER. 



For more than sixty years Charles Euler has resided in Vanderburg 
county. It was here that he was born, his natal day being February 28, 
1849, while his birthplace was in Center township. He has always continued 
in this section of the state and has lived a life of thrift and industry, being 
now the owner of a model little farm of thirty-four acres which has been 
brought to a high state of cultivation. His parents were Henry and Mary 
(Steinmetz) Euler, both of whom were natives of Germany. The year 
1837 witnessed their arrival in America, and at once they came to Evans- 
ville, soon after completing arrangements whereby a farm of eighty acres in 
Center township was purchased. Mr. Euler bent his energies to the task 
of developing and improving this farm, continuing its cultivation until 
his death, which occurred in 1861. For eleven years thereafter the mother 
traveled life's journey in her widowhood, and in 1872 was called to the 
home beyond. They had crossed the Atlantic in one of the old time sail- 
ing vessels and they were closely, actively and helpfully associated with the 
pioneer development of this part of the state. 

Charles Euler was reared on the old homestead and in his youthful 
days attended the district school, pursuing his studies through the win- 
ter seasons while the summer months were devoted to farm work. At the 
age of eighteen he left home and went to Evansville, where he learned the 
blacksmith trade, which he followed for eleven years. By the terms of his 
father's will he inherited thirty-four acres of land, and at that time aban- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 59 

doned blacksmithing and took up his abode upon his farm. It was unim- 
proved as far as buildings were concerned, so that he erected there a com- 
fortable house, also a barn and sheds. His attention has since been given 
to the development of his property, and the modern and progressive methods 
which he follows have made his fields very productive. 

On the 2ist of October, 1876, Mr. Euler was united in marriage to Miss 
Barbara Seoser, a daughter of Simon and Eva Seoser, the former a native 
of Germany and the latter of Switzerland. Mr. and Mrs. Euler have be- 
come the parents of five children, as follows : Eva, who lives at home ; 
Simon H., who is married and resides in Evansville; Maggie M., employed 
in Evansville; Edward, who passed away in October, 1904; and Anna W., 
who resides at home and is engaged in teaching school. 

In his political views Mr. Euler was a republican, finding that the prin- 
ciples of that party are the best embodiment of his views concerning gov- 
ernmental policy. He was elected and served as road supervisor of Cen- 
ter township for two terms, but has had little ambition for office holding. 
He was formerly a member of the Knights of Honor, and is now a mem- 
ber of the Evangelical church. His entire life has been passed in this local- 
ity and the fact that many of his stanchest friends are those who have 
known him from his boyhood to the present time indicates that his course 
in life has at all times been honorable and upright. 



THOMAS E. SMYTH. 



Thomas E. Smyth is the owner of one of the best improved farms of 
Vanderburg county, and although the active work is now being carried on by 
his son, he still gives supervision to the management of the place. He was 
born in Wadesville, Indiana, in 1861. His father. Dr. Richard Smyth, was a 
graduate of Jefferson Medical College of Philadelphia. A native of Ireland, 
he had come to America in early life and following his preparation for a 
professional career practiced medicine for many years in Princeton, Indiana. 

It was in the schools of the latter city that Thomas E. Smyth pursued 
his education until, putting aside his text-books, he secured a clerkship and 
devoted his attention to mercantile pursuits for a few years. The opportuni- 
ties of the western country then attracted him, and in 1881 he went to Kansas 
to try farming. There he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land 
upon which he made some improvements, giving his attention to the general 
cultivation of the fields for three years. He was convinced in that time, 
however, that Indiana was a better farming state, and, returning, settled on 
a farm in Knight township. Here he has since occupied one hundred and 
sixty acres of land, upon which he has made all of the improvements that 
now constitute it one of the best farms in this section. Its buildings are large 
and substantial, its machinery modern and the fences well kept. The stock, 



60 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

too, is of good grades, and everything indicates the progressive spirit of the 
owner. He has turned over the active work of the farm to his son, but his 
judgment still constitutes a factor in its successful operation. 

In 1884 Mr. Smyth was united in marriage to Miss Emma Wilson, who 
was born in Canada and is a daughter of Samuel Wilson, a resident farmer 
of Vanderburg county. They have three children: Richard, now living in 
Duluth, Minn., and John and Marie, upon the farm. The family are well 
known here, having for more than a quarter of a century lived in Vanderburg 
county, where their good qualities have won them favorable recognition. 
Mr. Smyth votes for the republican party which he has supported since at- 
taining his majority, and in all matters relative to the public welfare he takes 
a deep and active interst. 



DAVID S. BERNSTEIN. 

Some men seem bom for leadership in business and no obstacle can pre- 
vent them from attaining the object of their ambition. It matters not 
whether such men are born in poverty or in affluence they win their way 
to the top and nothing short of death can long retard their advancement. 
They have resources within themselves and do not depend upon others to 
find positions for them, but make positions for themselves. To this class 
belongs David S. Bernstein, a leading manufacturer of clothing and store 
fixtures and also identified with other business interests. 

He was bom in Germany, January 2, 1871. In the public schools of his 
native land he received an education that prepared him for the larger re- 
sponsibilities and at fourteen years of age he bade farewell to the fatherland 
and came to A!merica. He spent eight years in New York city, becoming 
acquainted with the language and customs of this country and also receiving 
his first introduction to the mercantile business. In 1894 he left the At- 
lantic coast and established himself in Evansville as a manufacturer of 
clothing. Ever since that time he has continued in a business for which he 
has shown remarkable adaptibility and which is one of the established in- 
dustries of Evansville. He is president of the Old Reliable Store Company 
at Fulton avenue and Franklin street and also president of the Evansville 
Store Fixtures Company. He is a stockholder in the Old State Bank and 
has been actively identified for a number of years with various business in- 
terests, in all of which he has displayed a keenness of insight and a sound 
judgment which gained the respect of his associates. 

On the loth of April, 1894, Mr. Bernstein was united in marriage to 
Miss Nannie C. Paul, a daughter of Robert Paul, of Evansville. Two chil- 
dren have blessed this union, Jessie M. and Rosallie Gertrade. 

Mr. Bernstein is greatly interested in fraternal organizations and is a 
member of the local Masonic lodge of Evansville; Lodge No. 116, B. P. 




D. S. P,ERXSTK1.\ 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 63 

O. E. ; and also of the Knights of Pythias, having passed through the chairs 
of the last named order and attained the rank of past chancellor. As is 
to be seen by the above brief review, Mr. Bernstein is an earnest and pro- 
gressive citizen, who generally accomplishes what he sets out to perform 
He is a worthy representative of the Teutonic race — a race that is making 
its presence felt in every country of the world. His success in Evansville 
in comparatively a few years is evidence that he made no mistake in select- 
ing this city as his theater of operations, although it is plain that a man 
of his natural ability and energy would have succeeded anywhere. 



MOSES SMITH. 



On memory's hall there hang many pictures that time cannot dim and 
which are never overshadowed even by the glowing colors of the present. 
Who cannot remember the school in which he began his education, be the 
building humble or pretentious ? It was in the old school building on Second 
between Main and Locust streets that Moses Smith began the mastery of 
those elementary branches of learning which constitute the foundation for 
all later knowledge. He was at that time a little lad of six years — years that 
had been spent in Evansville, for he was born in this city March i, 1845, a 
son of Robert and Mary (Skinner) Smith, both of whom were natives of 
Chatterass, England. Leaving that country on the ist of April, 1833, as 
passengers on a westward bound sailing vessel, they landed at New York 
with a cash capital of five dollars, and from the eastern metropolis walked 
all the way to Evansville, the mother carrying an infant child in her arms. 
As opportunity offered the father worked while on the way in order to meet 
the necessities of life, and found himself a dollar ahead when he reached his 
destination, his labors having enabled him to meet the expenses incurred on 
the trip and also add to the little sum which he had on reaching America. He 
earned his first money in Evansville by carrying plaster for bricklayers, but 
was not content with such an occupation and eagerly availed himself of the 
opportunity of cultivating on shares a section of land owned by John 
Mitchell, at that time a banker of Evansville. Following the death of Mr. 
Mitchell he continued farming on shares under the administrator, John 
Engle, ten years being given to the improvement of that farm. Mr. Smith 
then took up a farm of one hundred and twenty-five acres and, stimulated 
to further effort by the knowledge that the land was his own, and that he 
should derive all of the benefits of his labors, he bent every energy to the 
improvement of the property, carrying on his farm work along progressive 
lines. He not only carefully cultivated his fields but also raised good grades 
of stock and was associated with John Morgan in introducing the first Jersey 
bull into Indiana. After many years devoted to general farming and stock- 



64 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

raising he retired from active business but continued to live upon his farm 
near Evansville until his death in 1864. His wife passed away in 1863. 

Moses Smith was at that time a young man of twenty years and in the 
meantime he had pursued his education until, at the age of sixteen years, he 
left the Carpenter street school to take up the cares and responsibilities of 
business life, working with his father upon the home farm until the latter's 
death. 

It was about that time, on the 28th of April, 1864, when nineteen years 
of age, that Moses Smith was united in marriage to Miss Sarah Jane Black- 
bum, a daughter of Harvey Blackburn, a native of South Carolina, and 
Jane (Price) Blackburn, who was born in Virginia. The latter was a 
daughter of Levi Price, who was appointed postmaster of Evansville, August 
25, 1827, by John McLean, then postmaster general of the United States. 
The young couple began their domestic life upon his father's farm and for 
many years thereafter Moses Smith was closely associated with the agricul- 
tural development of Vanderburg county. Prospering in his undertaking, 
he invested in land and at one time owned the largest dairy and stock farm 
in the vicinity of Evansville. In 1874, however, he sold his home place to 
the city and it now constitutes the Locust Hill cemetery. At that time he 
engaged in the sewing machine business, which he followed for two years, 
when he again became connected with agricultural pursuits, purchasing one 
hundred and sixty acres of land in Warrick county, Indiana, upon which he 
lived for eleven years. He then disposed of that property and took charge of 
the nine-mile house, but eventually traded it for a farm in Warrick county, 
Indiana, which he still owns. On leaving the nine-mile house he removed 
to the city of Evansville, where he opened a real-estate office and is now 
numbered among the successful real-estate men of the city. He has 
thoroughly acquainted himself with property conditions and values here, 
understands the possibilities of sale and purchase and is thus capable of 
attending to the interests of his clients, who are numerous. 

As the years have passed there have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Smith 
twelve children, of whom William Harvey and Byron, the two oldest, are 
now deceased. Mary Jane has become the wife of Samuel Newman, of 
Evansville. Moses, Jr., is residing in St. Paul, Mirmesota. Sarah is the wife 
of Albert McCool, residing on a farm near Evansville. Kernie is in the 
employ of the Hercules Buggy Company of this city. Elmore and Dora both 
died in infancy. Daisy is the wife of Charles Harmon, an Evansville at- 
torney. Pearl is the wife of Henry C. Rueter, who is employed by the 
Evansville Dry Goods Company. Mildred is the wife of Emerson Gomez, 
a machinist with the Illinois Central Railroad of Evansville. Arvilla is the 
wife of Clyde Hudson, a traveling salesman living in Evansville. The family 
is well known and prominent in the city and county, and Mr. Smith has been 
closely connected with public affairs. He well remembers that at the time 
he was attending school the city was bounded by Division street on the 
north. Canal, which is now Fifth street, on the east. Walnut street on the 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 65 

south and the Ohio river on the west. Great changes have since occurred 
and the Evansville of a half century ago bears Httle resemblance to the city 
of the present. In 1868 he was elected road supervisor, which position he 
filled for six years, and during his term of office he made a gravel road from 
Locust Hill cemetery to Fulton avenue, which was certainly much needed at 
that time, for no street paving had been done at that time in the city. His 
ideas concerning the question of public policy and politics are sociological. 
He believes in the right of the masses rather than of classes and has been a 
close student of sociological and economic conditions so that his opinions 
are based upon a careful consideration of the questions involved. 



MILTON C. BRANDON. 

The life work of Milton C. Brandon became an integral element in the 
development of Evansville. His was the record of a strong individuality, 
sure of itself and stable in purpose, quick in perception, swift in decision and 
energetic and persistent in action. His rise from the humble position which 
he occupied when as an eleven-year-old boy he started out for himself, to the 
presidency of a company conducting an extensive commission business, cov- 
ers a wide range of experience. He was born on the 12th day of January, 
1856, in Dover, Stewart county, Tennessee, and was the eldest son of Newton 
and Martha Brandon. The father died about the time of the close of the 
Civil war and Milton C. Brandon, then a youth of eleven years, became the 
support of the family. It was a heavy burden for young shoulders to assume, 
but he bravely took up the task, utilizing his time and talents to the best 
advantage. His ability developed with the passing years and at the age of 
seventeen he came to Evansville to accept a position with the commission 
house of Martin, Eichel & Morris Company. Several years' connection with 
the firm brought him experience and an understanding of the business that 
well qualified him to conduct a similar enterprise on his own account, and 
about 1889 the firm of Holt & Brandon was organized, Mr. Brandon con- 
tinuing in active connection therewith to the time of his demise, serving for- 
a number of years prior to his death as the president and treasurer. Under 
his directing influence the trade of the house steadily increased and the 
business became a growing and profitable one. 

In 1896 Mr. Brandon was united in marriage to Miss Mary H. Gleichman, 
and unto them were born two daughters who are yet living, Martha and 
Milton, aged respectively twelve and eight years. Mr. Brandon was de- 
voted to his family and it was in his own household that his loss was most 
deeply felt, yet his death brought a sense of bereavement to all who knew him. 

His engaging social qualities, his rectitude and reliability in business and 
his progressive public spirit all combined to give him firm hold on the af- 
fections of his fellow townsmen. He was a very popular member of the 



66 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

local lodge of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and was loyal 
to his membership relatbns in the Grace Presbyterian church. He was al- 
ways appreciative of the kindness shown him on the part of his friends, and 
availed himself of every opportunity to reciprocate. Failing health caused 
him to go to Miami, Florida, in the hope of being benefited, and with his 
wife and two daughters he proceeded southward. Another stroke of ap- 
oplexy caused his family to be fearful for the worst, and they started home, 
hoping that his last hours could be spent in Evansville, but death came to 
him while the train on which the family were passengers was crossing his 
native state on the 12th of March, 1909. He was yet in the prime of life, 
well fitted for all the responsibilities which he had assumed, and it was the 
hand of sorrow that wrote the word finis at the conclusion of his life work. 



FREDERICK W. COOK. 

Various corporate interests have felt the stimulus of the spirit of en- 
terprise which has dominated Frederick W. Cook in all of his business 
transactions. His ability to formulate and execute plans, to coordinate 
forces, to carefully systematize interests has led him to a prominent posi- 
tion in the business circles of Evansville and this section of Indiana. Some- 
thing of the extent and importance of his interests is indicated by the fact 
that he is now the president of the F. W. Cook Brewing Company ; presi- 
dent of the Evansville, Newburg & Rockport Railway Company; presi- 
dent of the F. W. Cook Investment Company; and a director of and in- 
vestor in various other prominent business interests of this city. 

A native of Washington, D. C, Mr. Cook was born February i, 1832. 
Shortly after his birth his parents removed to Port Deposit, Maryland but 
subsequently went to Cincinnati, Ohio, while in 1836 they arrived in Evans- 
ville, Indiana. Frederick W. Cook therefore pursued his early education 
in the schools of this city and was provided with further advantages when 
sent as a student to the Anderson Collegiate Institute at New Albany. 
About a year after the family arrived in Evansville his stepfather, Jacob 
Rice, in connection with Fred Kroener, bought property in Lamasco (now 
the west side of Evansville) and erected a brewing plant — the first in 
southern Indiana — and years later Frederick W. Cook became connected 
with this business. He made his initial step in the business world, how- 
ever, as a clerk in the dry-goods store of L. W. Hebard, but two years 
later his brother died and he was called home by his parents. Soon after 
this he began learning the brewing business and in 1853, in connection 
with Louis Rice, a brother of his stepfather, he built the City Brewery 
on the site where the F. W. Cook Brewing Company is now conducting 
business. At that time the district was a corn field but the keen sagacity 




FREDERICK \V. COOK 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 69 

of Mr. Cook foretold its later value. The capital of the new firm was 
three hundred and thirty dollars. Mr. Rice assumed the management of 
the brewery, while Mr. Cook looked after the business details. From the 
beginning the enterprise grew and prospered and after three years Mr. 
Rice sold his interest to his brother Jacob. About that time a beer cellar 
was installed and the company began the manufacture of lager beer. An 
exclusive malt house was also added to the plant. The death of Jacob 
Rice, the stepfather and partner of Mr. Cook, occurred on the 3d of May, 
1872, and the mother of Mr. Cook passed away November 6, 1878. He 
thus became sole heir to the pjoperty and conducted the business under the 
old firm style of Cook & Rice until 1885, when it was incorporated as the 
F. W. Cook Brewing Company, with F. W. Cook as president. He has 
since remained at the head of the business which, under his direction, has 
constantly increased in volume and importance. The 3d of December, 
1891, the brew house and offices were destroyed by fire but were immedi- 
ately rebuilt and by March, 1893, the company had one of the most com- 
plete brew houses in the United States, with a capacity now of six hun- 
dred thousand barrels yearly. This has become one of the largest pro- 
ductive industries of Evansville and its product is shipped to foreign coun- 
tries as well as to most parts of this country. Mr. Cook is a member of 
the National Brewers Association and has constantly studied modern 
methods and processes whereby the interests of his business may be pro- 
moted and the excellence of the product advanced. 

Quickly recognizing favorable business opportunities, Mr. Cook has 
extended his efforts into various fields, all of which have profited by his 
co-operation, his energy and capable management. Becoming connected 
with the Evanston, Newburg & Rockport Railway Company, he was elected 
and is still its president. He is also president of the F. W. Cook Invest- 
ment Company, which owns Cook's Park, and he is a director of the Citi- 
zens National Bank, of the Ohio Valley Trust Company, the Evansville 
Trust & Savings Company, as well as many other important corporations 
which are factors in the material growth and business development of this 
city. 

In 1856 Mr. Cook was united in marriage to Miss Louise Hild, who 
was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and died in February, 1877. In Novem- 
ber, 1879, Mr. Cook wedded Jennie Himeline, of Kelley's Island, Ohio, 
who died in January, 1885. 

In the year of his first marriage Mr. Cook was also elected councilman 
of Evansville, from the fifth ward and in 1863 was elected to represent the 
eighth ward in the city council. The following year he was again chosen 
for the same position, but before the expiration of his term, resigned in 
order to accept a seat in the Indiana legislature, to which he had been 
elected in the fall of 1864. Later he represented the fourth ward in the 
city council and as an alderman has done important service to further the 
material interests and promote the welfare and progress of the city whose 



70 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

upbuilding has been attributable in no small degree not only to his official 
service but also to his business capacity. He has maintained a fixed and 
unalterable purpose throughout all of his business life and the attainment 
of success represents with him the fit utilization of the innate powers and 
talents which are his. 



HIRAM M. LINDLEY. 



From all those regions in which his friendship was cherished by those 
who had at one time or another been associated with him through business 
or social relations, there came at the time of the death of Hiram M. Lindley 
messages, all of which bore the same tenor of thought — deep regret at the 
passing of one who stood as a man among men. He attained the heights 
of greatness in the beauty and nobility of his character, in his lofty con- 
ception of friendship and of Christian service. Born in Vevay, Indiana, 
February 23, 1839, his life record covered the intervening years to the ist 
of January, 1901, when he passed away in Evansville. His parents were 
Francis and Rebecca (McKittrick) Lindley, well known early residents of 
Vevay. The father was born in Hamilton county, Ohio, where he lived 
until twenty-one years of age, when he removed to Switzerland county, 
Indiana, and was among the first to establish homes in the county seat. 
There he opened a tanyard, remaining a resident of that place for a half 
century. Subsequently he removed to Greensburg, Indiana, where he re- 
sided until his death, which occurred in 1875, when he was eighty-four 
years of age. His wife, who was born in Lexington, Kentucky, in 1800, 
died in 1839. Both were devoted members of the Methodist Episcopal 
church. 

Hiram M. Lindley, one of a family of nine children, mastered the pre- 
liminary branches of learning in the public schools of Switzerland county 
and in Moores Hill College. In 1859 after leaving college he and his 
brother, J. F. Lindley, became partners in the dry-goods business in New 
Albany, where they successfully conducted a store for more than a decade. 
In September, 1870, they removed their business to Evansville, where they 
continued actively in trade until 1895, estabHshing one of the foremost 
commercial enterprises of this city. His prominent place in business circles 
was never won at the sacrifice of another's interests. He sought prosperity 
along the lines which govern unflagging industry and strict and unswerving 
integrity. One who knew him well said of him: "In his business life he 
was distinguished for upright dealing. Once it was the case that no better 
advertising could be done by a business man than to deal honestly and 
faithfully by his patrons. When once a man's reputation for fair dealing 
was established; when it was known that his word might be implicitly 
trusted ; then a steady patronage might be counted upon. He held the old 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 71 

fashioned creed as to the conduct of business ; and during his long career 
he maintained an enviable reputation for the strictest integrity; his unim- 
peachable commercial probity won for him the confidence not only of inti- 
mate friends but of a large acquaintance among the business men of south- 
ern Indiana." The Evansville business was conducted under the firm style 
of J. F. Lindley & Brother until 1895, when they retired from business at 
this point and for three years Hiram Lindley was not connected with com- 
mercial interests. He then removed to Hazelton, Indiana, where he again 
engaged in business, meeting with success there until failing health forced 
him to leave Hazelton, at which time he shipped his goods to Evansville 
and placed his business afifairs in the hands of his brother-in-law, Elisha 
H. Stephens. He never recovered his health, gradually growing worse 
until the end came. 

'At the time of the Civil war Mr. Lindley's sympathies were entirely 
with the Union cause and he enlisted for service to protect Vanderburg 
county at the time of the Morgan raid. Public-spirited, he was deeply in- 
terested in everything that pertained to the welfare of the community and 
his cooperation could always be counted upon to promote the public good. 

In 1862 Mr. Lindley was united in marriage to Miss Sarah Stephens, a 
daughter of Robert and Carrie (Falconer) Stephens, the latter a native of 
England, while her father was of Scotch descent, coming to this country 
from Roderick, Scotland. For a considerable period he was engaged in the 
hat business in Washington, Indiana. Mr. and Mrs. Lindley never had any 
children of their own but reared two nieces, Mrs. Enola L. Gardner and 
Lydia J. Stephens, who took the place of daughters in the household. Mr. 
and Mrs. Lindley were always one in their interests and sympathies. 
Both were particularly active in the work of the Home of the Friendless, 
Mr. Lindley as a member of its board of trustees for seventeen years, while 
Mrs. Lindley has been on the board for thirty years. She was president of 
the Orphans Asylum for eighteen years, and Mr. Lindley was for thirty-one 
years a member of the board of trustees of Trinity church. They gladly 
shared with the unfortunate the success which had come to them, extending 
a helping hand wherever it was needed, or speaking the necessary word of 
cheer and encouragement. Their lives were an expression of Christian 
service and in the work Mrs. Lindley still continues. When the final sum- 
mons came and Hiram Lindley passed on to the reward prepared for the 
righteous, there came to his widow words of sympathy from all parts of 
the country. Bishop John H. Vincent, then in Zurich, Switzerland, wrote : 
"Mr. Lindley was a true man, kind, cheerful, hospitable and generous." 
From Bishop Cranston, of Portland, Oregon, came the following: "The 
sad intelligence of the death of my friend and your beloved husband (Mr. 
Hiram Lindley) has just reached me. While it grieves me to learn of his 
going away and to know how deeply you mourn his absence, I am none the 
less assured that all is well with him. His was a true heart. I have never 
forgotten his brave stand by my side when I was contending for righteous- 



72 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ness in the long gone days. He gave no uncertain vote when the test came 
that tried the integrity of church officials. As to my high regard for him 
during all these years you need not be told. A genial spirit has been your 
companion for a life time." 

Dr. Joseph Gardner, of Bedford, Indiana, wrote : "When one has gone 
away with no expectation of returning; those who have loved, those who 
have been friendly, and those who have had business dealings, all feel as if 
something had been personally lost. The degree of loss is in proportion to 
the interest that had been. Some are born to command; others are the 
bearers of silver and gold ; others stir the hearts of men by their eloquence. 
There is yet another class that find a way into your heart. There is no 
command in this swinging back of the inner portals of the soul. It comes 
as the sweet, silent benediction of the dew to the opening flower. It comes 
as the warning sunshine of spring. It comes with the blessedness of love. 
The barriers are melted away. Friendship is to the one pining for it. The 
wisdom of good counsel is for the perplexed soul needing it. Love is for all 
who worthily treasure it. Of this last, was Hiram Lindley. His cheerful 
soul has gone to the everlasting habitation that Christ planned for such as 
followed in his way. That is the blessed means provided for the best work 
of the loving heart of the sweet souled follower of Christ. And when we 
think of the warm hand shake, the winning smile, the genial words of cheer 
that we always had, when our friend and brother was here, we cannot be 
blamed if sadness marks our memories. There is a void; a void in his 
home, which was a place of love ; a void in his social circle, where his pres- 
ence was always welcome; a void in the societies, where great moral truths 
are given; a void in the Sabbath school; a void in the congregation of the 
Lord." 

The funeral services were conducted by the Knight Templars, for Mr. 
Lindley had been prominent in Masonry, holding membership in Reed 
Lodge, No. 316, A. F. & A. M., Evansville Chapter, No. 12, R. A. M., and 
La Valette Commandery, No. 15, K. T. He also took the degrees of the 
Scottish Rite. Of him a fellow member of the craft said: "His genial 
smile and hearty hand shake were always an inspiration to his brethren and 
companions in the lodge room, and although never aspiring to exalted posi- 
tions he was satisfied to do his share of the work on the floor among the 
craft. His upright and well shaped Christian character made him a model 
Mason and one to whom the teachings of the order meant much." 

Rev. J. H. Talbott said in his funeral oration over the remains of Mr. 
Lindley: "He was of a cheery, sunny temper. Discontent never sat as a 
guest at his fireside. It may be fairly supposed that he had some desire for 
a competency which would raise him above anxiety and would relieve him 
from the burden of constant toil. But if he had such desire, its failure of 
full realization brought no blight to the joy of his Hfe. He was so utterly 
unenvious of the better portion which may have fallen to others, that he 
could sincerely rejoice in their good fortune. Having an abiding faith in 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 73 

life's compensations — under the administration of righteousness — for hon- 
est industry, he went his way cheerfully content. His cheeriness of dispo- 
sition did not rest upon the fact that he was unacquainted with care ; nor did 
it rest upon a superabounding health; nor upon uninterrupted prosperity. 
But there was something in his make-up, not given to us all, that enabled 
him to find the glowing side of the day and to spend more time there than 
in its shadows. He set great store by the friendships of his life. Friend- 
ship seemed a sacred thing to him. It is often the case that they who are, 
so to speak, promiscuous in their friendships, fail of discerning its highest- 
claims and seem to lack the power to be in the deepest sense the friend of 
any. But it was not so with him. Whilst his circle of friends was un- 
usually large, and they were held always in loyal esteem, yet there were 
some to whom he clung with never failing grasp. His enjoyment in the 
society of these was unmarred. I really think that with his family and a 
few chosen friends about him he could have been happy in a wilderness 
living upon the barest necessaries. How he loved them! To do them a 
service was an unmixed joy, and his loyalty to them had something of the 
charm of chivalric devotion. Upon the members of his household — this 
clear sighted, faithful, patient, home making woman, the partner of his 
life, and the niece, loving and beloved as a daughter — he bestowed the 
vrarmest affection of his heart; and in their society he was unspeakably 
content. Those who were casually members of the household were admitted 
to most delightful association by this genial gentleman. In return for his 
devotion he received the equal devotion of the hearts that could understand 
his highest qualities. The charm and good cheer of this Christian home, 
as of some gracious benediction, abides with me — having shared its bless- 
ing for some brief time. Here in this household he was happiest; here he 
will be missed the most; here his memory will not fade. His social rela- 
tions were of the most satisfactory kind. As a citizen, a neighbor, he was 
exemplary and respected. This man was a Christian man. I have purposely 
reserved this as his last designation today, since it is the very crown of a 
human life. The world has never seen — will never see any other thing 
half so beautiful as the character of Jesus Christ as outlined in the four 
Gospels. Strength, gentleness, power and tenderness are so blended as to 
form a character surpassing human conception. To be a Christian is to 
follow this matchless One, and in some measure to be imbued with His 
spirit. Our friend was a Christian. United with the Methodist Episcopal 
church in 1861 at Washington in this state, he was henceforth a stanch and 
faithful member of that communion. He loved her doctrines and polity, 
honored her ministry with his cordial support and unvarying love, rejoiced 
in her glorious achievements, gloried in her great history and her far-reach- 
ing enterprises. For more than thirty years he was an honored official mem- 
ber of Trinity church of this city, trusted and loved by his brethren in offi- 
cial relations and by all the membership as well. But he was something 
more than a Methodist. He could not be a narrow sectarian; his nature 



74 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

was too broad for that. He was a Christian in a wide and generous sense ; 
loving the Lord, honoring Him before men. He was never demonstrative 
in his rehgious hfe. He could never have paraded himself before the world 
in any wise. But his religion gave direction to the governing principle of 
his life and therefore reached to the foundations of his character; his 
religious life was even, faithful, exemplary. For many years he was a 
teacher in the Sunday school; some of those who were in his class are 
doubtless here today. Living a blameless life, he has left a goodly heritage 
to his friends and has gone to a good man's reward." 



FRANK J. HAAS. 



Success wherever we find it is generally the result of ambition and 
wisely directed energy. It is not the result of accident, especially when it 
is attained after many years of earnest labor and self-denial. There is no 
better illustration than is presented in the life record of Frank J. Haas, sec- 
retary of the Evansville Gas & Electric Company. Eighteen years ago he 
became connected with the company and during that period has been con- 
tinuously in its service, advancing from one position to another until, in 
1907, he was elected secretary, an office which he fills to the satisfaction of 
the stockholders of the company and the people of the city. 

Mr. Haas was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, December 2, 1877. He came 
with his parents to Evansville when a child and here he grew up and at- 
tended the public schools, completing his early education in the high school, 
where he proved an apt and attentive pupil and gave evidence of abilities 
that have since marked his course in life. At the age of fifteen he began 
his battle with the world, which in his case has not been accompanied by 
the fluctuations so often witnessed. He entered the service of the Evans- 
ville Gas & Electric Company as meter repairer. After continuing in this 
capacity for a year he was advanced to the position of collector and, after 
discharging this responsibility in a way that met the approval of the officers 
of the company and also the public with whom he became a general fa- 
vorite, he was given a position in the office as a bookkeeper. This position 
he occupied until 1907, when he was made secretary of the company and 
placed in charge of responsibilities through which he has been able to in- 
crease the efficiency of the service and thus meet the approval of patrons. 

In 1904 Mr. Haas was united in marriage to Miss Emma Seiflfer, a 
daughter of Gustave and Elizabeth Seiflfer. Two children, Madeline, four 
years of age, and Virginia, six months, is the result of the union. Mr. 
Haas is well known in social circles and is an active member of the 
Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and the Travelers Protective 
Association, having many friends and associates in those organizations. 
In religious belief he is a Catholic and he and his wife have always con- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 77 

tributed liberally to the charities and educational work which are such 
prominent features of the church. Thoroughly equipped by long years of 
experience for the business in which he is engaged, Mr. Haas makes a con- 
stant study of promoting its efficiency and extending its scope. He brings 
to his duties a lively appreciation of the possibilities of a public service cor- 
poration and an understanding of the importance of rendering a reasonable 
value for value received. By the conscientious discharge of his obliga- 
tions he has won the confidence of all who know him and it would be 
difficult to find a young man better equipped for the work to which he de- 
votes his best energies than Frank J. Haas. 



FRANK R. LAUGHLIN. 

The process of evolution has been no more marked in any field than in 
the business world. Systematic organization is everywhere manifest and 
carefully formulated plans wisely executed. Every enterprise of magnitude 
too, has its promoter — he whose work is that of bringing to the public notice 
that which is ready for the public use or consumption. The evolution of 
business is strongly manifest in the methods of real-estate operation at the 
present day. It is within the memory of many men of the present age when 
realty transfers were largely made owing to the fact that someone wished 
to purchase property and sought that which would meet his demands. The 
intermediary services of a real-estate agent were scarcely known. Today the 
cities largely owe their upbuilding and progress to the real-estate men who 
have practically reduced the building of towns to a science. They have come 
to recognize the needs of modern civilization in city building and their work 
is prosecuted along lines that contribute to convenience, utility and duty. We 
are led to this train of reflection in contemplation of the life work of Frank 
R. Laughlin, who is preeminently a business man and one who has wielded 
a wide influence. The organizer, and promoter of the Laughlin Realty Com- 
pany, he has not only engaged extensively in the real-estate business in 
Evansville but is also operating in the south. 

He was bom in Evansville, November 3, 1877, a son of James Laughlin, 
who died in 1895. The father was a native of Pittsburg, Penn., and married 
Miss Mina Hudspeth, whose birth occurred in Boonville, Indiana. 

The education of Frank R. Laughlin was completed in the high school 
of Evansville and after putting aside his text-books he crossed the threshold 
of business life as an employe of a dry-goods firm, which he represented as 
stock man. Gradually, however, he worked his way upward, each successive 
promotion bringing him broader outlook and wider opportunities, and when 
he discontinued his connection with that house he was manager of the notion 
department. His service there covered a period of over ten years, but, think- . 
ing that broader opportunities were offered in the real-estate field, he 



78 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

organized the Laughlin Realty Company and later took over the Sonntag 
Investment Company, since which time he has been engaged very extensively 
in the real-estate business, handling large property interests in Evansville 
and also in Florida, where he is platting and building a town in accordance 
with the most modern and progressive ideas. He opened up the Laughlin 
place, also the Willard addition and Park place, and his undivided attention 
is given to business. 

While he ranks with the most prominent real-estate men of this section of 
Indiana, Mr. Laughlin has also labored effectively and successfully in other 
fields and is now president of the Wolflin Luhring Lumber Company, a 
member of the board of directors of the Missouri Fruit Company and a mem- 
ber of the Oolitic Stone & Marble Company of Heltonville, Indiana, where 
he is engaged in quarrying stone. He is likewise a director of a railroad 
which is being built on the east coast of Florida. 

In 1904 Mr. Laughlin was united in marriage to Miss Helen Cook, a 
daughter of F. W. Cook, who is mentioned elsewhere in this volume. They 
have one child, Frank, Jr. In his fraternal relations Mr. Laughlin is an Elk. 
In politics he is an independent voter, supporting the candidates whom he 
thinks best qualified for office, but while not giving undivided allegiance to 
any particular party he keeps well informed on the vital questions and issues 
of the day and in all matters of citizenship takes a progressive stand, his 
in behalf of Evansville being effective and far-reaching factors in promoting 
the city's interests and improvement. 



VAL J. SCHMITT. 



Whatever the success which has crowned the life work of Mr. Schmitt, 
it is well known that it is due to his own labors. He started out in business 
well supplied and is yet a young man with opportunity for further progress 
in the field of labor which he has chosen as his life work. He is now giv- 
ing his attention to general agricultural pursuits, making his home in Cen- 
ter township. 

He was born in Armstrong township, this county, in September, 1880, 
and is the son of Adam Schmitt, a native of Germany, who, at the age of 
eighteen years, bade adieu to friends and fatherland and sailed for the new 
world in company with his parents who crossed the continent to Vanderburg 
county and located upon a farm. At the father's death Adam Schmitt 
received the farm by the terms of his father's will and continued its cultiva- 
tion and development until about three years prior to his demise, which 
occurred in August, 1890. He was numbered among the enterprising agri- 
culturists of the community and won success through his well directed 
business efforts. His wife passed away in 1885. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 79 

The youthful days of Val J. Schmitt were spent upon the old home farm 
and his experiences in youth were those that usually fall to the lot of. farm 
boys. He attended the public schools of Evansville and also the Catholic 
schools of that city. In his youth he began providing for his own support 
by working for some time as a farm hand by the month. Later he turned 
his attention to the saloon business in Evansville, where he remained for 
three years, at the end of which time he retired and took up his abode in 
Center township, where he invested in a farm of thirty-four acres. This he 
is now operating in connection with land which he rents. The fields are well 
tilled and yield good crops annually. His farm is now finely improved and 
upon the place he keeps five head of horses and mules which are used in 
working the farm. 

On the 27th of November, 1901, Mr. Schmitt was married to Miss 
Stella Schaum, a daughter of George and Elizabeth (Beckman) Schaum, 
both of whom are natives of Indiana. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Schmitt has been 
born a daughter, Bernice E., who was born October 19, 1909. 

Mr. Schmitt gives his politcal support to the democratic party, while of 
the Order of Eagles he is a faithful member, being associated wtih the local 
lodge at Evansville. He has always lived in this county where he is well 
known. Persistent and diligent in business, he is constantly working his way 
upward and is meeting with well merited success which indicates that his 
progressive course will continue in the future. 



ALBERT DOERSCHLER. 

Prominent among the enterprising, energetic and successful business 
men of Evansville stands Albert Doerschler, who since 1881 has been con- 
nected with the furniture industry of this city and since 1900 has been 
president of The Specialty Furniture Company. His preliminary training 
was thorough and his experience broad, and when he became the chief 
executive head of an enterprise he bent his energies to its development and 
growth with the result that the company of which he is now the head con- 
trols one of the most productive industries of this section of the state. 

Albert Doerschler was bom in Rhineland, Germany, December 23, 1858, 
his parents being William and Caroline Doerschler. The father, also a 
native of that locality, was a plush weaver in Germany and followed that 
pursuit in the land of his birth until 1881, when he crossed the Atlantic and 
made his way direct to Evansville, where the later years of his life were 
spent in honorable retirement from business, his death occurring in April, 
1904. 

Albert Doerschler was a public-school student until the age of fourteen 
years, after which he put aside his text-books to learn the more difficult 
lessons in the school of experience. He worked with his father in weaving 



80 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

and farming until the family bade adieu to friends and native land and 
sailed for the United States. Following his arrival in Evansville, in 1881, 
he entered the employ of the Evansville Furniture Company as a cabinet 
maker and was thus engaged until 1890. In that year he became a partner 
in a newly organized business enterprise called The Specialty Furniture 
Company. The undertaking proved successful and in 1900 the business 
was incorporated with Mr. Doerschler as the president ; M. W. Braeger, as 
vice president; and Henry G. Rusche, as secretary and treasurer. From 
a small beginning the business has grown and developed until the plant is 
an extensive one, well equipped with modern machinery, while one hundred 
skilled workmen are employed. A general line of furniture is manufac- 
tured, including chamber suites, dressers and chiffoniers, which in style, 
finish and workmanship are of standard quality and which are shipped 
throughout the United States. A reasonable profit is secured and the busi- 
ness has become one of the leading industrial concerns of Evansville. 

Mr. Doerschler has been married twice. On the 24th of September, 
1890, in this city, he wedded Miss Annie Stoltz, who died in October, 1908, 
leaving two children : Walter, eighteen years of age, who is now bookkeeper 
for the Holzey Ice Pick Company ; and Olga, sixteen years of age, attend- 
ing the high school. On the 20th of April, 1910, Mr. Doerschler was again 
married, his second union being with Mrs. Maggie Loetcerch. 

He is independent in his political views nor casts his ballot according to 
party dictation. He belongs to St. John's church and is a member of the 
Liederkranz. His identification with the city covers twenty-nine years, a 
period characterized by continuous progress in business, so that he has left 
the impress of his ability and individuality upon the commercial develop- 
ment of the city. His life has been preeminently that of a business man 
who recognizes his possibilities and so utilizes his powers that success is 
attained without the sacrifice of the rights of others. 



FERDINAND GROTE. 



The story of honorable success always excites interest and admiration. 
To the superficial thinker it would seem that the successful man is not the 
exception to the rule. This opinion may be due to the fact that it is the 
successful men who are in the public eye while little is said or written about 
the others. Statistics, however, show that the vast majority of men meet 
failure and that only about three per cent achieve that which they under- 
take. It is therefore worthy of favorable comment when the record of an 
individual is marked by continuous progress whereby he gains a position in 
advance of the great majority of his fellows. This Mr. Grote has done 
and is now a prominent factor in the business circles of Evansville as presi- 
dent of the Grote Manufacturing Company. Not only in the field of 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 81 

machinery building but also in the realm of invention has he done credit- 
able work. 

Mr. Grote was born in Germany, May 4, 1847, ^s were his parents, Will- 
iam and Laura Grote. The maternal grandfather came to the United States 
about 1850 with all of his family except Mrs. Grote who, in 1855, started 
for the new world with her children, consisting of four daughters and a 
son, Ferdinand Grote being the second child. She did not tarry on the 
Atlantic coast but made her way at once to Vanderburg county, where her 
remaining days were passed at the "white house" three miles from Evans- 
ville. 

Ferdinand Grote was but eight years of age at the time of the emigra- 
tion to the new world. He went upon a farm with his uncles and there 
remained until sixteen years of age, when he took up his abode in this city 
and secured the position of engineer at the mill of Kramer, Heukes & 
Green, having previously obtained a knowledge of machinery while on the 
farm. He was particularly interested in the engines which were used in 
shelling corn and he manifested considerable mechanical ingenuity and skill 
even in his youthful days. After coming to Evansville he remained at the 
mill for several years and then entered the employ of Christian Decker, the 
proprietor of the first wagon shop of Evansville that was operated by 
steam. Mr. Grote continued in that service for several years, after which 
he was employed in a woolen mill for a year. Having carefully saved his 
earnings, he invested in a threshing machine outfit and turned his attention 
to the business of threshing, in which he continued for three years. It was 
about that time that the waterworks of Evansville were being built and 
he entered the employ of the Halley Manufacturing Company which had 
the contract for the construction of the waterworks. After acting as 
machinist for a year he was appointed engineer and continued in that 
connection until 1876, when he started in business on his own account, 
opening a shop on Mulberry street for the manufacture and repair of ma- 
chinery. Later he consolidated his interests with Frank Hopkins and in 1888 
organized the business under the name of the Novelty Machine Company, 
now the Grote Manufacturing Company. From a small beginning the busi- 
ness has grown until it is today one of the mammoth industrial concerns of 
Evansville. The company manufacture freight and passenger elevators, 
steam and water heaters and machinery for tobacco packing plants. They 
also take contracts for driving wells and securing a water supply for large 
manufacturing plants. 

In 1890 Mr. Grote obtained the water for the insane hospital when all 
the experts had failed. He was one of the first to use electricity for pump- 
ing water, his eflforts in that direction creating considerable attention, a 
representative from the Engineering Record, a trade journal of New York, 
coming to investigate the work which he later commented upon in the paper. 
As Mr. Grote has continued in his manufacturing interests he has seen the 
possibilities for improvement at various times and has brought out a num- 



82 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ber of patents on heating appliances and machinery. He patented a system 
of filtering water through the bed of a river and the system is proving a 
most practical and economical one. He has installed this system at Owens- 
boro, Kentucky, where it has been tried with success for five years. The 
Grote Manufacturing Company employs about sixty people and is planning 
in 191 1 to erect a fine plant at the old Miller club house, where Mr. Grote 
has purchased four and one-half acres of land. He is president and treas- 
urer of the company with J. D. Caramody as vice president and Laura 
Grote, his daughter, as secretary. In addition to his other interests, Mr. 
Grote served on the waterworks board for seven years and as engineer 
for six years. 

On the 29th of June, 1875, Mr. Grote was united in marriage to Miss 
Matilda Rahn, and unto them were born five children : Emil, who is in the 
foundry; Ernst; Fred; Laura; and Edwin. Mr. Grote holds membership 
in the Code of Honor and with the Tribe of Ben Hur. He enjoys the com- 
panionship of his friends and recognizes at all times his duties and obliga- 
tions to his fellowmen. He is not neglectful of the duties of citizenship 
but prefers to give his undivided attention to business affairs and in his 
chosen field of labor has made continuous progress. Starting out in a 
humble capacity, he has developed his latent powers and energies until he 
is recognized as an expert in mechanical engineering work of his class. His 
ability is manifest in the extensive business which he has built up and which 
is one of the important industrial concerns of the city. What he under- 
takes he accomplishes, allowing nothing to deter him if industry and hon- 
orable eifort can overcome the difficulty. Training and experience have 
continually heightened his ability and he occupies today a prominent posi- 
tion in the industrial circles of Evansville. 



JAMES Y. WELBORN, M. D. 

The name of Welbom has figured prominently in connection with the 
medical profession in Evansville for more than half a century, three gen- 
erations of the family having been representatives of the medical frater- 
nity, successful in practice and active in upholding the highest standards 
of the profession. Dr. William Welbom, a native of Mount Vernon, 
Indiana, and a member of one of the honored families of the state, was 
graduated from Evansville Medical College with the class of 1853 and 
practiced in this city and in Stewartsville, Indiana, until the time of his 
death in 1871. Early in the '60s he volunteered to enter the army but 
failed to pass the physical examination. 

His son, Dr. George W. Welborn, who was born in Evansville, was 
for a short time a student in Asbury College but put aside his text-books 
in order to join the Union forces who were protecting the Federal interests 




DR. JAMES Y. WELBORX 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 85 

in the Civil war. He served throughout the entire period of hostilities with 
the Sixty-first Indiana Infantry and was captured by the Confederates 
at Murfreesboro. He acted as hospital steward during the greater part 
of his connection with the army, for some time he was hospital steward of 
the old hospital on the banks of the Ohio, and when the war was over he 
took up the study of medicine and entered into active practice at Stewarts- 
ville, where he remained an honored and successful member of the medical 
fraternity until his death, which occurred in 1905. He had married Miss 
Martha Stennette, a native of Todd county, Kentucky, born in 1841. 

Dr. James Y. Welborn was born in Stewartsville, January 28, 1873, 
and after pursuing his early education in the schools of that town, entered 
De Pauw University of Greencastle, Indiana. His interest in the profes- 
sion to which his father and grandfather had devoted their energies led 
him to begin active preparation for the practice of medicine. He attended 
the Marion Sims Medical College of St. Louis, Missouri, where he won 
his M. D. degree in 1899 and since that time he has pursued a post-gradu- 
ate course at Harvard University, at Johns Hopkins University, of Balti- 
more, and in New York city. He has been a close and discriminating 
student of all that bears upon the practice of medicine and surgery, and 
while he adopts any new idea or method which he believes will prove of 
practical value, he is never hasty in discarding the old and time-tried 
method, the value of which has been proven through long years of ex- 
perience. 

Dr. Welborn is now the owner, in partnership with Dr. Edwin Walker, 
of the Evansville Sanitarium, a liberally patronized institution wherein 
much good work has been done. In addition he has a large private prac- 
tice and his ability is widely recognized not only by the general public but 
also by representatives of the medical fraternity. In 1905 he was ap- 
pointed city health officer of Evansville to serve for a four years' term and 
in 1909 was reappointed to that office. He was also the organizer and was 
made manager of the Anti-Tuberculosis Society, which has now been in 
existence for three years and at the present writing is building an open 
air hospital. No profession is so little commercialized as is the medical, 
which is indicated in the fact that practitioners are continually seeking out 
preventative methods to which they give publicity through the profession 
and the general press, that the world at large may follow a course in life 
that promotes health. Anything which tends to solve the complex prob- 
lems which confront the physician is of interest to Dr. Welborn, and his 
reading and research have been most wide and comprehensive. 

On the 22d of October, 1902, at Inglefield, Indiana, Dr. Welborn was 
married to Miss Mamie Ingle Begley, a daughter of Dr. Baxter Begley, 
formerly of Evansville. Two children have been born of this marriage: 
Susannah Jane, now seven years of age; and James York, Jr., a little lad 
of two summers. 



86 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

The parents hold membership in Trinity Methodist church, and Dr. 
Welborn is popular in the local organizations of the Independent Order 
of Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias and the Benevolent and Protective 
Order of Elks, with all of which he has membership relations. He is like- 
wise a member of the Hendricks Club, which he organized in 1905 for 
reform in poHtics and elections, becoming its first president. He remains 
a stalwart democrat, but believes that the organization should be a party of 
principle and that it should not exist primarily to make particular individ- 
uals the incumbents in office, but rather to make vital certain principles 
essential to national salvation and progress. While deeply interested in 
his profession, his life has been by no means self-centered but has touched 
and benefited those activities which affect the general interests of society. 



LOUIS EISSLER. 



Louis Eissler has devoted his entire life to farming and lives upon the 
old family homestead which he now owns. Vanderburg county is the place 
of his nativity, the date of his birth being in October, 1862. His parents 
were Jacob and Mary Eissler, both of whom were natives of Germany. 
Coming to America in early life, Evansville was chosen as their place of 
location and the father worked out by the month for some time in order to 
meet the immediate needs of the family. He was ambitious, however, to 
engage in business on his own account, and as soon as possible rented a 
farm which he continued to cultivate for several years. During that period 
he carefully saved his earnings until the sum was sufficient to enable him 
to purchase sixty-six acres in Center township. He had new impetus for 
continued eflfort when he owned the property, and bent every energy to the 
development of the place and to the further improvement thereof. It was 
a tract of timber land when it came into his possession, and much arduous 
labor was required to clear it and place it under cultivation, but from acre 
after acre he cut down trees and in time planted crops which brought forth 
generous harvests. He continued to engage in farming upon that place 
until his death, which occurred in July, 1891. His wife died in January, 
1888. 

The educational opportunities afiforded Louis Eissler were those of the 
common schools. He was born and reared upon the old homestead farm and 
from an early age aided in the work of the fields. He was trained to habits 
of industry that have constituted the source of his success throughout his 
entire life. He was thoroughly acquainted with the best methods of tilling 
the soil when, after his father's death, he purchased the interest of the other 
heirs in the old home farm and began its cultivation on his own account. 
His fields are now well tilled and he gathers rich crops. Everything about 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 87 

the place is neat and thrifty in appearance and indicates his careful super- 
vision and progressive methods. 

In February, 1887, Mr. Eissler was united in marriage to Miss Katie 
Miller, a daughter of George and Clara Miller, the former a native of Ger- 
many and the latter of Kentucky. The home of Mr. and Mrs. Eissler has 
been blessed with six children, all of whom are yet under the parental roof, 
namely: Marion, twenty-two years of age; Daisy, aged twenty-one years; 
Owen, twenty years; Elmer, fifteen; Dorothy, nine years of age; and Ber- 
nice, a little maid of five summers. 

Mr. Eissler and his family are well known in this community and have 
the warm regard of a large circle of friends and acquaintances. They hold 
membership in the Methodist Episcopal church and Mr. Eissler gives his 
political support to the democratic party. He is a stalwart advocate of its 
principles and upon this ticket was elected road supervisor, in which posi- 
tion he acceptably served for six years. 



GEORGE HARMS. 



Through the years of an active business life George Harms, now de- 
ceased, was largely connected with the drug trade, but in other fields, too, 
his labors were of worth, for he gave to the world violins of superior work- 
manship, whose strings responded vibrantly to the touch of the master 
hand. He possessed the love of music characteristic of the people of his race, 
for George Harms was a native of Germany, born in the year 1845. When 
a small boy he was brought to this country by his father, George M. Harms, 
who purchased a farm in Armstrong township, Vanderburg county, and be- 
came a prominent and influential citizen of that locality, for some years 
serving as justice of the peace. 

George Harms acquired his education in the schools of Indiana and was 
trained amid the healthful environment and stimulating influences of country 
life. When a young man he came to Evansville and became an apprentice in 
a drug store where he applied himself closely to mastering the business. 
Later he was employed by the firm of Leich, Vierling & Carlstadt, wholesale 
druggists, and afterward was associated with Lemcke & Company, druggists, 
whom he represented as a pharmacist until his death. He had thoroughly 
acquainted himself with the medicinal properties of remedies, and in com- 
pounding medicines displayed marked pharmaceutical skill. 

Mr. Harms studied music and although he was not an expert performer, 
he became recognized as an excellent musical critic, appreciative of the 
finest harmonies and most classical work of the masters. He was the maker 
of a number of violins, his work in this particular winning him international 
reputation. One of these instruments was used by August Wilhelmy, the 
violinist, in public performances. 



88 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In 1872 Mr. Harms was united in marriage to Miss Emily Leich, a 
daughter of Henry Leich, a native of Germany and a cabinet-maker by trade, 
who died two years after coming to the new world. The death of Mr. Harms 
occurred in Evansville, September 9, 1890. He was a Lutheran in rehgious 
faith and a republican in his political belief. He strongly desired the success 
of the party, for he considered its principles most conducive to good govern- 
ment. He was ever active in behalf of the welfare of the city and never 
allowed personal interests or ambitions to dwarf his public spirit or activity. 



GEORGE W. VARNER, M. D. 

Among the most eminent physicians of southern Indiana is Dr. George 
W. Vamer, of Evansville, who is also recognized as a public-spirited citi- 
zen, a scholar of rare endowments and a man whose influence for good is 
felt wherever his name is known. Dr. Varner was bom in Spencer county, 
Indiana, July 7, 1862. He is a son of Isaac and Ida M. (Alley) Vamer. 
His father was a representative farmer of Spencer county and is now de- 
ceased. His mother is still living. Five children were born to them, three 
sons and two daughters. The daughters are still living but two sons have 
been called away. 

George W. Varner received his preliminary education in the common 
schools. He early showed an aptitude for books and fixed his attention 
upon the medical profession as his chosen field. In the meantime he at- 
tended the National Normal University at Lebanon, Ohio, an institution 
under the "noted teacher, Alfred Holbrook, which attracted thousands of 
ambitious young men and women from many states. After graduating 
from this school he engaged in teaching, devoting his leisure hours to the 
study of medicine. He matriculated in the Kentucky School of Medicine, 
at Louisville, Kentucky, and was graduated in 1886, with the degree of 
M. D. and also with the highest honors of his class in general proficiency. 
He also received highest honor in anatomy and was awarded two gold 
medals in recognition of his ability in the same. Still another award was 
granted — appointment as interne, or house physician, in the Louisville City 
Hospital for a period of one year. This was a position greatly to be de- 
sired, as it gave opportunity for practical application of teachings received 
during the medical course. At the close of his duties at the Louisville 
City Hospital Dr. Varner was invited to New York city as interne in the 
New York Hospital for the Relief of Ruptured and Crippled Children. 
Here he continued for a year, gaining a fund of useful knowledge and 
coming into personal contact with many of the leading physicians and sur- 
geons of the metropoHs. In 1895 he took a post-graduate course in New 
York and Vienna, Austria, paying special attention at Vienna to surgery 
and gynecology under some of the masters of world-wide reputation. Pos- 




DR. G. W. VARXER 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 91 

sessing advantages of the highest character and bringing to his work a 
mind trained by observation and experience, he was well prepared to enter 
upon a successful career in the noble art which has made the profession 
a synonym for beneficence and philanthropy. 

In 1888 Dr. Varner located in Evansville and established his office on 
the west side. His practice has grown until it embraces a large part of 
southern Indiana and often taxes his strength to the limit of its capacity. 
He is surgeon at St. Mary's Hospital and of the Vanderburg County Or- 
phans Home. He is medical examiner for a number of fraternal and bene- 
ficiary orders, among them the Royal Arcanum, the Modern Woodmen of 
America, the Woodmen of the World, the Degree of Honor and several 
old line insurance companies. He is widely recognized by members of the 
profession as a consultant and is a member of the American and Indiana 
State Medical Associations. Dr. Varner is an indefatigable worker and a 
student who never spares any pains or time in the attempt to solve the 
many difficult problems arising in the course of his practice. He has one 
of the largest and best selected medical libraries in the city and has also 
made an extensive collection of the best books relating to science and litera- 
ture. Being a lifelong student whose habits of careful inquiry were early 
formed, he is an investigator whose interest never tires and he is recog- 
nized as one of the energetic and progressive men of the profession who 
will always be found on the advance line and whose powers of discrimina- 
tion and judgment may be depended upon in all emergencies. 

Although his time is mainly occupied by the demands of his chosen 
calling. Dr. Varner is identified with various business interests. He was 
one of the organizers of the West Side Bank and is its vice president. He 
is vice president and a member of the board of directors of the West Side 
Insurance Real Estate Company, and a director of the West Side Building, 
Loan & Savings Association and the Evansville Pure Milk Company. He 
is a member of the West Side Business Men's Association and was for two 
years its president. His most recent activity in the field of business has 
been in the organization, in association with other prominent Evansville 
men, of the American Bankers Life Insurance Company. Its incorporators 
were C. Howard Battin, Melvin H. Lockyear, Dr. George W. Varner 
(medical director), Albert W. Funkhouser, H. Fred Riechmann. Francis 
M. Van Winkle and William E. Stinson, all prominent in business circles 
in this city. The home office is at No. 304 Furniture building in Evans- 
ville. The purpose is to conduct a pure life insurance business according 
to plans and at rates that are attractive. These rates are protected by an 
adequate reserve fund which guarantees the future stability of the com- 
pany, and with such well known business men at the head as the incopora- 
tors, there is no reason to feel any doubt concerning the growth and 
success of the business. Politically Dr. Varner is identified with the re- 
publican party but he has in no sense been a seeker for political honors. 
During 1893-1895 he served as a member of the city council at large. For 



92 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

many years he has been a member of the Methodist church and is recog- 
nized as one who is ever ready to lend a willing ear or extend a helping 
hand to any worthy individual or cause. 

On the 24th of June, 1891, Dr. Varner was united in marriage to Miss 
Olive L. Edmond, of Vanderburg county. Mrs. Varner is a daughter of 
John F. Edmond, one of the pioneer farmers of the county and a man of 
sterling characteristics. Five children have been bom of the union, all of 
whom are living at home: Olin E., Victor I., Marguerite O., Earl and 
Norman L. 

Dr. and Mrs. Varner are highly popular socially and their home 
radiates an influence whose beneficent effects are felt by young and old in 
the community. Dr. Varner has long recognized that every human being, 
whether he knows it or not, is a missionary for good or evil. He recog- 
nizes that there are no neutral characters in the great drama of life and 
each leaves an impress that we are taught goes on forever. Guided by 
wise teachings and worthy examples, Dr. Varner has attained a reputation 
for fidelity to his profession and honorable discharge of responsibihty that 
are worth more in the final summing up than great riches. 



MAURICE L. WILLIAMS. 

Maurice L. Williams, who owns a well improved tract of land compris- 
ing sixty acres in Center township, devotes his attention to the pursuits of 
farming and dairying with excellent success. His birth occurred in Fort 
Branch, Indiana, on the 15th of September, 1878, his parents being George 
and Eliza Jane Williams, both of whom were likewise born in this state. 
The father, who came to Scott township, Vanderburg county, at an early 
day, has since been successfully engaged in general agricultural pursuits 
and has resided on his present place for more than forty years. He has 
gained many friends here and is widely recognized as one of the substan- 
tial and respected citizens of the community. 

Maurice L. Williams remained under the parental roof until sixteen 
years of age and then began providing for his own support by working on 
a dairy farm by the month. After being thus employed for about four 
years he purchased a tract of sixty acres of land in Center township and 
embarked in business as a dairyman on his own account, having since built 
up an expensive and profitable enterprise in this connection. His farm is 
well improved in every particular, all the buildings thereon being of a sub- 
stantial and up-to-date character. He has won a gratifying measure of suc- 
cess in both his agricultural and dairying interests and is well entitled to 
recognition among the prosperous and representative citizens of the 
community. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 93 

In September, 1896, Mr. Williams was united in marriage to Miss 
Eleanor Euler, a daughter of Jacob and Louise Euler, both of whom are 
natives of Indiana. Since his arrival in Vanderburg county the father has 
been actively engaged in general agricultural pursuits. Unto Mr. and Mrs. 
Williams have been born seven children, as follows: Louise E., who is 
nine years of age ; Ethel E., a little maiden of six years ; Amala K., who is 
five years old; Leslie M. and Gladys M., who are three and two years of 
age respectively; and Ella N. and Elsie M., twins, who are in their first 
year. 

In politics Mr. Williams is a republican, while his religious faith is indi- 
cated by his membership in the German Lutheran church, to which his wife 
also belongs. The young couple enjoy a wide and favorable acquaintance 
in the locality where they reside and the hospitality of the best homes is 
cordially extended to them. 



MAJOR JULIUS F. BLUM. 

Long experience with the grocery trade has well qualified Major Julius 
F. Blum for the conduct of the business in which he is now engaged — the 
sale of fancy groceries, delicatessen goods, wines and liquors. In this he 
is in partnership with Alex. L. Hardigg and under their capable manage- 
ment the enterprise is proving a profitable one. Major Blum was born in 
Evansville, July 22, 1858, and is a son of Robert and Margaret Blum. The 
father was born in Switzerland and in 1850 came to the new world, settling 
in Evansville, where he was employed as a machinist until 1880. He then 
engaged in the sale of periodicals and newspapers, having the agency for a 
number of German publications up to the time of his death which occurred 
in 1884. 

In the public schools Major Blum pursued his education to the age of 
sixteen years when it seemed incumbent that he should provide for his own 
support and he secured a position as delivery boy for William Caldwell, a 
grocer of this city, with whom he remained for three years. He was after- 
ward connected for six months with the wholesale grocery house of Ragon 
Brothers and then became a clerk in the employ of Davis Brothers, retail 
grocers, with whom he continued until 1896. In that year he became a 
clerk for the Cook Grocery Company, whom he thus represented for eleven 
years, or until 1907, when he was made manager of the concern. In 1908 
he joined Mr. Hardigg in purchasing the business which they have now 
conducted for two years, a large trade being accorded them. They draw 
their patronage from many of the best citizens of Evansville and from the 
beginning theirs has been a profitable venture. 

On the 29th of May, 1888, Major Blum was married in Evansville to- 
Miss Josephine Oswald and unto them have been born four children*.: 



94 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Oswald R., twenty-one years of age, who is now in the United States army ; 
John and Clarence, aged eighteen and sixteen, who are pupils in the high 
school; and Lillian, nine years of age, attending the public schools. The 
family are well known in the city and the Blum household is a hospitable 
one. 

Major Blum gives his endorsement to the republican party and supports 
its candidates at the polls. Fraternally he is connected with the Knights of 
Pythias and with the Modern Woodmen of America and his life history 
contains an interesting military chapter through his connection with the 
National Guard, for he is now commander of the First Battalion of the 
First Infantry. Indeed, he has long been identified with military affairs in 
Evansville. He assisted in organizing Company E and was enrolled as a 
private on the 5th of October, 1887. On the ist of November of that year 
he was made corporal, becoming sergeant on the nth of December, 1887, 
and on the 7th of May, 1888, was made second lieutenant. Promotion to 
the first lieutenancy followed on the 8th of April, 1889, and on the nth of 
March, 1892, he became captain, resigning that position, however, on the 
1st of January, 1894. He then gave his attention to the work of raising 
Company M and was commissioned captain May 29, 1895. He served as 
commander of the company through the war with Spain, entering the 
United States service on the 12th of May, 1898, and continuing therein 
until mustered out November 23, 1898. Following the war he was com- 
missioned captain of the reorganized company formed of members of both 
Company E and Company M. This company was unassigned when he 
received his captaincy on the 26th of April, 1899. He was made captain of 
the Fifth Separate Company, January 20, 1900, and when the First Regi- 
ment was reorganized he was commissioned captain July 3, 1900. As an 
officer he has attended every encampment held from 1888 until 1900 in- 
clusive. He has stood for a high standard of proficiency in the National 
Guard, believes in careful organization and thorough discipline and at all 
times has commanded the respect and loyalty of those who have served 
under him. His varied interests have brought him a well rounded develop- 
ment and he is recognized as a forceful and honored citizen of Evansville. 



HENRY STEINMETZ 



A well improved and valuable property of one huridrcd and four acres 
indicates in its attractive appearance the practical and progressive methods 
which its owner, Henry Steinmetz, pursues in its cultivation. Moreover, it 
is the visible evidence of his business ability and his well directed thrift. He 
was born in this township February 23, 1838, his parents being Fred and 
Elizabeth (Smith) Steinmetz, both of whom were natives of Germany. The 
development and improvement of this section of the state were largely 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 95 

attributable to the discerning efforts of those citizens whom the fatherland 
has sent to Vanderburg county. They have not only exhibited the sterling 
characteristics of the Teutonic race, but have also shown marked adaptability 
in utilizing the advantages which surround them here. Fred Steinmetz, at- 
tracted by the favorable reports which he heard concerning America, crossed 
the Atlantic to New York in 1837, and from the eastern metropolis pro- 
ceeded westward by way of the canal. Eventually he reached Evansville and 
from that village, as it was then, made his way into Center township, where 
he purchased eighty acres of land from Mr. Qinton. He at once began culti- 
vating and improving this and continued the operation of the fields for a 
number of years, his energy and earnest labor bringing to him substantial 
success in the undertaking. At length he sold out and invested in two hun- 
dred acres elsewhere. From that time forward until his death, which 
occurred in September, 1903, his attention was given to the improvement of 
the latter property with a result that he made it one of the fine country 
places in his township. His wife passed away ten years before his death. 

Henry Steinmetz reared to farm life and has always been engaged in 
general agricultural pursuits. He remained with his parents until twenty-two 
years of age, and then married Miss Olive Blackburn. This was in 1861, at 
which time his father gave him forty acres of land. He at once began farm- 
ing and it was an arduous task that confronted him, for the tract was mostly 
covered with timber. Slowly it was cleared as the monarchs of the forest 
fell before his sturdy strokes. The brush was burned, stumps were grubbed 
up, and, in the course of time, the land was put into cultivatable condition. 
Then the plowing and planting were done and in course of time good harvests 
were gathered, for the soil was naturally rich and productive. While work- 
ing in the fields he also had care for the stock, building good barns and sub- 
stantial outbuildings for its shelter. He also built a substantial home upon 
his place and as time has passed on has added modem improvements. 
Prospering in his undertakings, he has extended the boundaries of his farm 
until he now owns one hundred and four acres — a valuable and richly culti- 
vated tract. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Steinmetz have been born five children, namely: 
Barney, who is married and lives in Evansville; Schuyler, a locomotive 
engineer of the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad, who is married and 
makes his home in Evansville. Charles and Fred, who assist in the affairs 
of the home farm, and Mrs. Ella Laubscher, also of Evansville. The wife 
and mother died in September, 1905, her death being the occasion of deep 
regret among her friends as well as in her immediate family. Mr. Steinmetz 
and his children hold membership in the Methodist church and his political 
opinions are in accord with the principles of the republican party. Three 
times he has been called to the office of road supervisor of Center township 
and has capably and faithfully discharged his duties. His has been an 
honorable and upright life, characterized by the faithful performance of all 
the duties that have devolved upon him. He has never been known to take 



96 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

advantage of the necessities of his fellowmen in any business transaction 
nor has he sought to shirk his responsibihties in other connections. His 
worth is widely acknowledged and he has reached the evening of life with 
an untarnished name. Few men of his age can claim to be be native residents 
of Vanderburg county, but for more than three score years and ten he has 
lived here, witnessing the many changes that have occurred as the district 
has been reclaimed from a western wilderness and converted into one of the 
richly improved sections of the state. He has seen many changes, too, in 
the methods of living, particularly in farming, for the old crude farm 
implements have been replaced by modern machinery that greatly lightens 
labor and enables the agriculturist to accomplish many times more in a day 
than he could do when the old methods were in vogue. 



MARCUS S. SONNTAG. 

The career of Marcus S. Sonntag, a leading financier and business man 
of Evansville, is a striking instance of results that may be accomplished by 
a life of energy and integrity, having as its incentives a worthy ambition. 
Mr. Sonntag is a native of Evansville and all his life has taken a lively 
interest in its growth and in the welfare and prosperity of its citizens. He 
has been instrumental in securing the establishment of many new industries 
at Evansville and no one has done more toward beautifying and building up 
the suburbs. Any man who devotes years of his life to the upbuilding and 
improvement of the homes in the community in which he lives is worthy 
of respect and honor. 

Marcus S. Sonntag was bom at Evansville, February 17, 1859, and is a 
son of John H. and Ellen Sonntag. He was educated in the public schools 
of Evansville, there receiving an impetus for the acquisition of knowledge 
which has been strengthened and broadened by extensive travel, close obser- 
vation and personal contact with men of affairs. For fifteen years he was 
a traveling salesman. During this time he gained much information in 
regard to the conduct of business affairs and made many observations which 
have proven of practical benefit in large enterprises in which he has since 
engaged. For ten years he was connected in the insurance and real-estate 
business in Evansville with his brother, John H. Sonntag, Jr., under the firm 
name of Sonntag Brothers. The business proved highly successful and 
developed from year to year under the fostering care of a management 
thoroughly trained in all the details of modern methods. The active man- 
agement of this business was in the hands of the subject of this sketch, who 
in its conduct demonstrated his capacity for larger duties and in an un- 
usual degree won the confidence and esteem of the business men of the 
community. 




M. S. SOXNTAG 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 99 

During the period of his activities as member of the firm of Sonntag 
Brothers, he became president of the Union Investment Company, which 
position he still occupies and in which company his activities have been 
quite extensive. This company has within the past ten years erected and 
sold more than three hundred homes in Evansville and has been one of the 
important factors in enlarging and beautifying one of the most attractive 
cities of Indiana. In the suburbs especially the work of the company is to 
be seen in beautiful homes amid attractive surroundings and provided with 
all the comforts and improvements regarded as essential in modern life. 
The policy of the company has always been in the direction of encouraging 
worthy citizens to own their own homes, and its liberality and accommo- 
dating spirit has enabled very many to gain this end. 

On December 5, 1901, he was elected a member of the board of directors 
of the Old State National Bank to take the place of late Captain John 
Gilbert and has since been actively identified with that institution. 

On December 4, 1904, largely through the energy, activity and public 
esteem of the subject of this sketch, the American Trust & Savings Com- 
pany of Evansville, Indiana, was organized, in which he launched one of 
the substantial financial institutions of this city. ' Upon the organization of 
the company he became its vice president and within one year thereafter 
became the president of the institution which position he still occupies. 
The company has a capital and surplus of two hundred and fifty thou- 
sand dollars and the confidence of the public is shown by deposits of a mil- 
lion dollars. The company owns the handsome building at Sixth and Main 
streets which is valued at one hundred thousand dollars, and it is gen- 
erally considered that no institution is more ably and conservatively 
managed. 

Mr. Sonntag is one of the vice presidents of the American Bankers As- 
sociation. He is director, secretary and treasurer of the Evansville Rail- 
ways Company, and in all positions and trusts has shown a clearness of 
grasp and promptness of action which has commanded the respect of his 
associates and the confidence of investors. 

Mr. Sonntag has twice served as member of the school board of the city 
of Evansville. His first appointment was for a term of five years from 
May 7, 1901. On the ist of January, 1910, he was again appointed and 
is now serving on this board. He is chairman of the Play Grounds Com- 
mission and has taken great interest in securing permanent play grounds 
and swimming pools. Although never an ofifi.ce seeker Mr. Sonntag has 
taken the interest of a patriotic citizen in political afifairs and has been 
identified with the republican party. He was sent as delegate from his dis- 
trict to the national republican convention in Chicago in June, 1909. 

On February 12, 1884, Mr. Sonntag was united in marriage with Miss 
Genevieve M. Cook, of this city. Two living children are the result of this 
union: Marion and Jeanie. The home of Mr. and Mrs. Sonntag is one 
of the happiest in the city and is a welcome center for the gathering of 



100 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

friends and relatives. Mr. Sonntag is a director of the Young Men's 
Christian Association. It is the teaching of the best thinkers that man has 
something in him higher than the pursuit of pleasure, and the career of 
Mr. Sonntag is an exemplification of the truth of this conclusion. Early 
he became imbued with worthy ideals, not only in business affairs but in 
the many responsibilities of society, friends and family and it has been his 
aim to discharge them manfully, leaving the result with an inscrutable 
wisdom and power that controls the universe. That he has been in an im- 
portant degree successful in his career is attested by the confidence and 
love of those who know him best, and by the universal esteem in which 
he is held in the city of his birth by his fellow citizens. 



GEORGE L. MILLER. 



George L. Miller, whose labors constitute an important element in the 
improvement of Evansville through his operations in the field of building 
activity, is now well known as the leading contractor of the city, notwith- 
standing the fact that he started out in life empty-handed, with no advant- 
ages save those which the public schools offer. He was born in this city, 
October 15, 1867, and is a son of Peter and Margaret (Muth) Miller. His 
father was born in Niederengelheim, Hesse, Germany, in the year 1828, 
and his life record covered the intervening years to 1894. In early life he 
learned the cabinet-maker's trade and at the age of eighteen he became 
a resident of the United States. Settling in Evansville, at an early day, he 
resided for nearly forty years in this city and was not only well known in 
business circles but was also a prominent factor in the German societies 
here. His wife, who was born in Pennsylvania, in 1840 passed away on the 
7th of August, 1882. 

George L. Miller spent his youthful days in his parents' home, and was 
sent as a pupil to the public schools when six years of age, continuing his 
studies until, feeling the necessity of providing for his own support, he 
began learning the iron molder's trade, which he followed until 1894. He 
was only fifteen years of age at the time of his mother's death. Diligence 
and enterprise were early developed in his business experience and grad- 
ually he worked his way upward until with the capital saved from his 
meager earnings he was enabled to engage in business on his own account. 
He turned his attention to general contracting and in this field has pros- 
pered. He now makes a specialty of buying unimproved property, erecting 
residences thereon and selling them on the easy payment plan. He origin- 
ated this course and in the conduct of his interests has not only furthered 
his individual prosperity but has also made it possible for many to secure 
homes who could not do so if an entire cash payment had to be made. He 
builds according to modern styles of architecture with all the later day im- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 101 

provements, and his business has grown along substantial and broadening 
lines. 

On the 23d of November, 1893, Mr. Miller was united in marriage to 
Miss Mary Miller, who though of the same name, was not a relative. Her 
parents were William and Elizabeth (Schaefer) Miller, natives of Germany 
and early residents of Evansville. Her father died in 1905 at the age of 
seventy-two years, having long survived his wife, who passed away on the 
13th of July, 1887, at the age of forty-three years. Her father was one who 
braved the dangers and difficulties of crossing the plains in 1849 to seek 
gold in California, and his labors in the mines were quite successful. Both 
Mr. and Mrs. William Miller were prominent in the German societies of 
this city, holding membership in the German Benevolent Society and other 
organizations. Their many good qualities gained them warm friends who 
entertained for them the highest respect. Unto Mr. and Mrs. George L. 
Miller have been born two children : Sylvester L. and Elder L. 

Mr. Miller gives his political support to the republican party but with- 
out desire for office. The family attend the Presbyterian church and are 
well known socially in the community. That Mr. Miller is prominent in 
the trade circles of the city is indicated by the fact that he has been hon- 
ored with the presidency of the Master Builders Cooperative Association 
and that he is also the vice president of the Master Building Association. 
His life has been one of unremitting diligence, crowned with gratifying and 
honorable success. 



DAVID A. COX, M. D. 



David A. Cox is a representative of the medical profession of Vander- 
burg county now living in Howell, where he has practiced continuously since 
1890, largely making a specialty of surgery. He is, moreover, active in other 
lines of business and his efforts likewise touch the general interests of society 
wherein the welfare and progress of the community are involved. The 
county numbers him among its native sons and he has the honor of being a 
representative of the first family of Evansville. 

His paternal grandparents were Colonel James and Frances (Miller) Cox, 
the latter a member of a family that came down the river to the present 
site of Evansville in a boat. There they found a partially completed log 
cabin. The probability was that the Indians had killed the owners before 
they had completed their pioneer home. The Miller family, therefore, 
finished the building and occupied it, but several times were obliged to take 
their boats and escape the redmen by going out upon the river. This was 
the first house within what is now the corporation limits of Evansville, and 
stood under the shelter of the old elm tree on Water street. It was a 
daughter of this family, Frances Miller, who became the wife of Colonel 
James Cox, also one of the pioneer settlers of southern Indiana. 



102 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

They made their home in Perry township where, on the 8th of September, 
1830, was bom unto them a baby boy, who was afterward prominently known 
in the community as Major Joseph B. Cox. Reared amid the surroundings 
of pioneer Ufe, he enjoyed the educational advantages offered in this locality, 
and afterward attended high school in Cincinnati, Ohio, for one term, also 
spending one term in St. Xavier's at Cincinnati. In 1849 he was graduated 
from Bacarus Business College, and was thereafter engaged in steamboating 
between Cincinnati and New Orleans until 1857. This gave him splendid 
opportunity to meet and mingle with the travelers and business men upon 
the docks, and he became an excellent judge of men, his ready discernment 
in this particular constituting a factor in his success in later life. Soon after 
leaving the river he was elected a trustee of Perry township and subsequently 
he entered the sherifif's office as deputy, serving until the outbreak of the 
Civil war. He organized and was elected captain of Company F, Sixtieth 
Regiment of United States Volunteer Infantry, and a few months later was 
promoted to the rank of major. On the 8th of October, 1862, in the battle of 
Perrysville, he received orders from his brigade commander to proceed with 
three companies to a certain point and hold the position until a certain hour, 
after which he was to report with his troops to the general headquarters. 
The orders were faithfully executed, but when he reported, the general in 
an angry tone, inquired : "Major, did you know that your services with your 
men were badly needed on the firing line ?" He answered : "From what I 
could see and hear I did." "Then sir," said the general, "why did you not 
bring your men up?" Major Cox then confronted his senior officer with 
his own order, and said emphatically : "This order from you commanded me 
to hold another important position, and I obeyed." The general looked at 
the paper and said : "Major, you have done your duty," and issued a new 
order which Major Cox faithfully carried out at once. For thirteen months 
he was in active service and was then detailed to return home because of im- 
paired health. Soon afterward he was appointed chief deputy county 
treasurer, and throughout the period of his residence in Evansville was 
recognized as a prominent and influential citizen of the community. He 
served for six years as deputy sheriff and afterward held the position of 
collector of customs at Evansville during Cleveland's administration. His 
duties as a civilian were performed with the same fidelity that marked his 
military service. 

There was still another phase of his character which perhaps was the most 
important, for his Christian faith, permeated his life and was an influencing 
factor in all of his relations, pubHc and private. For many years Major Cox 
was a leading and influential member of the Liberty Baptist church and 
assisted in the organization of this association. He took an active interest 
in every department of the church work and did whatever he could to further 
its interests and extend its influence. Through three decades he was regarded 
as the most prominent member of the general home mission board. He 
assisted in the organization of the Oakland City College and was ever one 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 103 

of its stalwart champions, giving freely of his means and his labor for the 
welfare of that institution. For some years after the death of Dr. Williams 
he served as president of the college. He was not only a good man but was 
a forceful citizen his labors constituting an effective element for progress and 
improvement. His patriotism was no less marked in days of war than in 
days of peace; his loyalty was no less pronounced in public affairs than in 
private life. His was an upright, noble Christian manhood. Major Cox 
was twice married. He wedded Miss Amanda Sirkle, who died in 1868, 
leaving one son, Dr. D. A. Cox, of this review. In 1871 Major Cox wedded 
Miss Martha J. Angel and they had two sons, Robert M., now deceased; 
and Dr. Joseph B. Cox. 

Dr. David A. Cox, whose name introduces this record, was born in Union 
township, October i, 1865, and after mastering the elementary branches of 
learning in the district schools continued his education in the Evansville High 
school and in Indiana University, which in 1888 conferred upon him the 
degree of Bachelor of Arts. His literary course completed, he began prep- 
aration for a professional career and is numbered among the alumni of the 
Ohio Medical College of Cincinnati of 1890. Immediately afterward he 
located for practice in Howell, where he has since remained, and although 
he has been accorded a large general practice he speciaHzes in the field of 
surgery, wherein he has gained notable skill. For years he has been surgeon 
for the Louisville & Nashville Railroad and he has also been surgeon at the 
Deaconess Hospital for a number of years. At the same time he displays 
excellent business ability in other directions. The family still owns three 
hundred acres of land in this vicinity, of which Dr. Cox has the rental. In 
1906 he became one of the organizers of the Howell State Bank, which was 
capitalized for twenty-five thousand dollars and of which he has been the 
president since its organization. His associate officers are E. J. Young, vice 
president, and F. C. Baugh, cashier, the latter succeeding E. M. Roland, who 
was made cashier on the organization of the bank, A fine building has been 
erected to accommodate the business which is conducted along general bank- 
ing lines, and has already reached large and gratifying proportions. 

Prominent in Masonry, Dr. Cox has attained the Knight Templar degree 
and is also a member of the Mystic Shrine. He likewise belongs to the 
Evansville Lodge of Elks, is a member of the Independent Order of For- 
esters, and is physician of the Foresters for the state of Indiana. He is like- 
wise a member of the Court of Honor at Evansville. Important business and 
fraternal relations do not exclude his active participation in community affairs, 
for he has figured as a prominent factor in the public life of Howell since 
early in the organization of the town government. Since that time he has 
served on the town board and labors earnestly and effectively for public 
progress, reform and improvement. His politcal views accord with the 
principles of the democratic party. 

In 1894 Dr. Cox was married to Miss Gertrude Walsh, a native of 
Memphis, Tennessee, and a daughter of Thomas Walsh, master mechanic at 



104 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Howell for the Louisville & Nashville Railroad. Dr. and Mrs. Cox hold 
membership in the Baptist church and he is serving on the board of trustees 
of the Baptist College of Oakland City. His life has touched many lines 
of activity and in all he has continued the work which was instituted by his 
ancestors, who as early settlers of Vanderburg county began the initial 
development and improvement of this section of the state. 



W. H. McCURDY. 

While a resident of Evansville for a little more than seven years, W. 
H. McCurdy is recognized as a dynamic force in the business circles of 
the city, the extent and importance of his operations in the industrial field 
placing him in a prominent position in the ranks of the city's representative 
business men. His initiative spirit, his executive force and his keen dis- 
crimination have combined to gain him a position among the capable and 
resourceful men who, in modern parlance, are termed captains of industry. 
Moreover, in the establishment and conduct of the business carried on 
under the name of the Hercules Buggy Company he has contributed an 
enterprise of distinct value to the commercial and manufacturing circles 
of the city. In other fields, too, he has given proof of his capacity for suc- 
cessful management, and his cooperation is sought in those fields where 
sound judgment and business talents of the first rank are needed. 

Mr. McCurdy was born near Washington, Pennsylvania, in 1853, ^"^ 
descends from Scottish ancestry. He was educated in the common schools 
and an academy, and, being of a mechanical turn of mind, was apprenticed 
to a millwright, showing a proficiency that soon made him the most skillful 
workman in the shop. In much less time than usual he mastered the trade, 
at which he continued until twenty-two years of age. A spirit of unrest, 
however, took possession of the young mechanic, and he was seized by an 
irresistible longing to see the world. He closed his tool chest, never to be 
opened by him again, and resigned his position and started out to seek a 
fortune under new conditions and amid new surroundings. As a traveling 
man he proved especially successful, having a confidence in himself which 
inspired respect and being gifted with the happy ability to make friends 
and retain them. In 1879 he settled at Kansas City, then on the eve of 
great real-estate speculation, which extended into the surrounding state. 
There he engaged in the insurance and real-estate business, making a suc- 
cess in those lines as he had in everything he had undertaken. In 1889 
Mr. McCurdy returned eastward and located in Cincinnati, where he be- 
came interested in the Favorite Carriage Company, of which he was secre- 
tary for five years. In 1894 he resigned that position to engage in busi- 
ness for himself. He organized the Brighton Carriage Company and then 
entered upon an independent career, which has made his name widely 




W. H. ileClRDV 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 107 

known in manufacturing circles as one of the important factors to be 
reckoned with by all operators in his department of activity. Beginning 
with a small capital he became one of the captains of industry. 

Facilities at Cincinnati being inadequate, owing to a rapidly growing 
business, Mr. McCurdy found at Evansville a location that seemed to 
meet existing and future demands and in 1902 he removed his business to 
this city. Here he erected a factory according to the most approved mod- 
ern ideas, equipped with every device for turning out on time the best 
vehicle the market demands. The name of the company was changed to 
the Hercules Buggy Company, of which Mr. McCurdy is principal owner. 
The plant has a floor space of nearly seven acres and a capacity for the 
manufacture of fifty thousand vehicles per year. The Hercules Buggy 
Company gives employment to over one thousand men and is one of the 
important agencies in maintaining the prosperity of Evansville. It is diffi- 
cult for the uninitiated mind to comprehend the magnitude of an enter- 
prise so large as the one presided over by the subject of this review. Such 
a plant did not grow up in a day. It required years of practical experience 
in manufacturing and business affairs, a wide grasp of possibilities as to 
manufacture and distribution, and large financial resources. The success 
of the enterprise is a great gratification to many who have noted its pro- 
gress from, the beginning. Mr. McCurdy has gathered about him a corps 
of assistants who are able and energtic and who gain much of their in- 
spiration from one who possesses these qualities in an unusual degree. 

At the time of this publication in 1910 Mr. McCurdy has been a resi- 
dent of Evansville seven years. In that time he has figured prominently in 
many business enterprises. He was elected a director in the Old State 
National Bank the first year of his residence in the city. He was one of 
the organizers of the American Trust & Savings Company, which is now 
doing a thriving business with a capital and surplus of two hundred and 
fifty thousand dollars, and is still a director in this institution. He has also 
figured prominently in the new traction lines coming into the city and is 
now president of the Evansville & Eastern Electric Railway and the Evans- 
ville Railways Company. He is a leading member in a syndicate which 
now owns and controls the street car lines in the cities of Owensboro and 
Henderson, Kentucky. 

On the 25th of June, 1880, Mr. McCurdy was united in marriage to 
Helen E. Hess, of Cincinnati, who is a most estimable lady and has proven 
to her husband a constant source of encouragement and support. Their 
home is one of the most attractive in the city. 

Mr. McCurdy is a public-spirited and patriotic citizen in the best sense 
of the term. From sturdy ancestry he inherited physical vigor and mental 
endowments of a high order. Eminently fitted by ability and experience 
for the discharge of large responsibilities, he easily occupies a place in 
the front rank of the leading men of Evansville. The real upbuilders of 
the city are not those who handle the reins of government but who give 



108 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

their influence to continuous municipal progress and who found, promote 
and control extensive business interests. Laudable ambition, ready adapta- 
bility and a capacity for hard work are essential elements of success and in 
none of these has Mr. McCurdy ever been found lacking. 



HENRY J. RUSCHE. 

The success which Henry J. Rusche has attained makes his business 
principles and methods of interest to the public and investigation into his 
life record shows that he has justly won the proud American title of a self- 
made man, in that he started out on his own account as a youth of fifteen 
years and has since been dependent entirely upon his own resources. More" 
over, his record also proves, as does that of a great majority of men, that 
advancement depends entirely upon unremitting effort intelligently di- 
rected. Today he is secretary and treasurer of the Specialty Furniture 
Company, twenty-one years having been devoted to the duties of the dual 
office, his executive force and administrative direction constituting im- 
portant elements in the growth and prosperity of the house. 

Mr. Rusche was born in Oldenburg, Germany, December 23, 1862, and 
is a son of Herman and Magdalena Rusche, who were also natives of that 
country. The father, who was bom in 1837, was engaged in farming in 
Germany until he came to the new world in 1867, making his way direct 
to Evansville, where he accepted the position of pipe man in connection 
with the gas works. On his retirement from that position he was made 
inspector of the city waterworks and later became a stockholder in the 
Southwestern Broom Company, thus becoming associated with the indus- 
trial and commercial interests of the city. He continued a factor in busi- 
ness circles until 1904, when with a comfortable competence acquired 
through his labors he retired to private life. 

Henry J. Rusche was only five years of age when his parents came t& 
the United States and since that time has lived in Evansville. As a public 
school pupil he pursued his education to the age of fifteen years and then 
sought the available opportunities of business life, learning the cabinet- 
maker's trade with the Evansville Furniture Company, with which he was 
connected until 1898. During that period he made steady progress in 
knowledge and skill in the business which he had chosen as his life work 
and his ability won him promotion from time to time until he had attained a 
position of large responsibility. Desiring, however, to engage in business 
on his own account, he withdrew from connection with the Evansville Furn- 
iture Company, organizing the Specialty Furniture Company, with Albert 
Doerschler as president, Mike Breger as vice president and himself as 
secretary, treasurer and general manager. His long experience well qual- 
ifies him for the active control of the business in its operative department 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 109 

and from its inception the house has enjoyed a growing success. The out- 
put finds a ready sale on the market, because of durability, style, finish and 
general workmanship as well as reasonable prices. 

On the 22d of May, 1889, in Evansville, Mr. Rusche was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Rosetta Reitz and unto them have been born six children: 
Matilda, at home; William, sixteen years of age, who is attending Lock- 
year's Commercial College; Sylvester, fifteen years of age, a student in the 
public schools ; Robert and Henry A., aged respectively thirteen and eleven 
years, now pupils in the parochial schools ; and Herman, three years of age. 
The parents are communicants of the Catholic church. 

Mr. Rusche is a worthy representative of the class of foreign born citi- 
zens whose adaptability has enabled them to recognize and improve the 
opportunities furnished in the new world. From the outset of his business 
career his progress has been continuous and through the development of his 
latent powers and talents he has gained a creditable position in the manu- 
facturing circles of Evansville. 



JOHN N. ADLER. 

John N. Adler started in business life as a carpenter, but is now the 
owner of a fine farm property, in the midst of which he has erected a com- 
modious and modern residence of attractive style of architecture. The other 
buildings and improvements upon the place are in keeping with the home, 
and the property is a valuable one, indicating the industrious and enterprising 
life which Mr. Adler has lived. 

He was born in Vanderburg county on the 14th of January, 1859, and, 
like many of the sterling residents of this part of the state, comes of German 
ancestry. His parents were Mathias and Maggie (Knaub) Adler, both of 
whom were natives of Germany, and on coming to this country settled in 
Vanderburg county in 1854. The father possessed the national love and 
talent for music and for a number of years gave his attention to that art as a 
source of livehhood. Finally he turned his attention to general farming, 
purchasing a thirty-acre tract of land which he owned and cultivated for 
twelve years. He then sold out and invested in one hundred and twenty-five 
acres in Center township, carrying on that farm until 1902, when he divided 
the place among his children, his son John receiving twenty-five acres as 
his share. In addition to that property the father also owned one hundred 
and sixty acres in Gibson county, Indiana. He was a man of marked energy 
who in business affairs carried forward to successful completion whatever 
he undertook. 

The youthful days of John N. Adler were spent under the parental roof, 
the district schools affording him his educational privileges, while the summer 
months were devoted to farm work that made him well acquainted with the 



110 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

requirements of modern agricultural life. On attaining his majority, how- 
ever, he thought to follow another occupation than that to which he had been 
reared and began working at the carpenter's trade, which he followed for 
seven years. At the age of twenty-eight he was united in marriage to Miss 
Maggie Klein, a daughter of Adam and Kate Klein, both of whom were 
natives of Germany. At the time of his marriage Mr. Adler rented a tract 
of land from his father-in-law and continued its cultivation for fifteen years, 
during which period he carefully saved his earnings. He then invested in 
fifty acres of land in Center township and has since lived upon this farm, 
although he has extended its boundaries until it now comprises sixty-eight 
acres. The soil is rich and productive and responds readily to the care and 
labor which he bestows upon it. He has erected a good house that is 
thoroughly modem in style and equipment, has also built a large barn and a 
number of large buildings, so that the improvements upon the place are 
modern and attractive. He has a fine vineyard and other fruit growing on 
his place keeps him busily employed, his labors, however, being rewarded 
by good crops. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Adler have been bom five children : Kate, Edward, 
Mamie, John and Arthur, aged respectively, twenty-one, twenty, eighteen, 
sixteen and twelve years, all of whom are yet at home. The parents and 
children attend the Evangelical church and are interested in its work and 
upbuilding. Mr. Adler is a republican in his political views and in matters 
of citizenship is progressive, giving his allegiance to measures and move- 
ments which are instituted for the general welfare. He displays in his life 
many sterling traits of character and all who new him hold him in warm 
regard. 



ALBERT F. KARGES. 



An eminent statesman has said: "In all the world the thing supremely 
worth having is the opportunity coupled with the capacity to do well and 
worthily a piece of work, the doing of which shall be of vital significance 
to mankind." To Albert F. Karges has come this opportunity, and Evans- 
ville recognizes the fact that in its utilization the public at large has been 
benefitted. He has been connected with various business interests of im- 
portance in the industrial, commercial and financial circles of the city, his 
enterprise proving a factor in the development of substantial trade re- 
lations. 

Mr. Karges was bom in German township, Vanderburg county, No- 
vember 3, 1861, and is the second in a family of four children whose 
parents were Ferdinand and Rosina (Dulty) Karges. His father, who 
was a pioneer furniture manufacturer of Evansville, died in the year 
1891, having long survived his wife who passed away in 1869. 




L>'»C 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 113 

At the usual age, Albert F. Karges entered the public schools, but be- 
gan work when thirteen years of age. In the meantime the family had 
removed to Memphis, Tennessee, but later returned to Evansville. His 
first service was as collector with the Evansville Furniture Company at 
a salary of one dollar and a half per week. He afterward occupied a 
position as clerk in a tailor shop for three years and received three dollars 
per week when in the employ of Fred Brokamp, who is still a resident 
of this city. Subsequently Mr. Karges was employed by William Hughes 
for six years in the capacity of bookkeeper, after which he embarked in 
business on his own account in 1885. He had carefully saved his earnings 
until his industry and economy had secured for him a capital of six hun- 
dred dollars, when he started out independently. For nine months he was 
engaged in the lumber business as a partner in the firm of Goeke & 
Karges, and afterward began the manufacture of furniture in a small 
warehouse as a partner of Henry Stoltz, under the firm style of Stoltz 
& Karges. For three years they conducted the business there success- 
fully, their trade growing rapidly until the business reached large pro- 
portions. At the end of that time Mr. Karges purchased his partner's 
interest, and in February, 1889, organized and incorporated the business 
under the style of the Karges Furniture Company. The output is sold all 
over the world, and the trade is constantly growing. Mr. Karges is prac- 
tically sole proprietor of the business, which, carefully systematized and 
well managed, has become one of the most important productive indus- 
tries of the city. The plant is splendidly equipped, and the utmost care 
is taken to keep the goods up to the highest standard in manufacture, 
durability, finish, workmanship and style. 

Mr. Karges has proven his worth in active management and as a di- 
recting force his cooperation has been sought in many other fields. He 
is now the president of the Globe Furniture Company, which was organ- 
ized in the latter part of 1899, and manufactures a different class of goods 
than that turned out by the Karges Furniture Company. He is likewise 
president of the Karges Wagon Company and is a director of the Bosse 
Furniture Company, the World Furniture Company, the Crescent Stove 
Works, the Evans Mirror Beveling Company, and the City National Bank 
— which are among the most important of the manufacturing, industrial 
and financial interests of the city. He is also extensively interested in 
real estate, having made judicious investments in Evansville property. 
To the field of railway operations he has also extended his efforts, and 
is now chairman of the board of directors of the Evansville Railways 
Company and president of the Evansville Terminal Railway Company. 
He is a director of the Jourdan Loesch Furniture Company; the Evans- 
ville Metal Bed Company ; and the Metal Furniture Company ; and is 
president of the Furniture Manufacturers Building Company; and of the 
National Furniture Association. 



114 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In December, 1885, Mr. Karges was married to Miss Lizzie Hauck of 
this city, and they have three hving children and have lost one. Those 
who survive are: Albert, eighteen years of age; Edwin F., who, at the 
age of fourteen years is a high school student ; and Esther K., twelve 
years of age, also attending school. The family residence is at No. 15 17 
South Second street. 

Mr. and Mrs. Karges are active and prominent members of the Pres- 
byterian church, in which he has served for many years as elder. He 
is also prominent in the Young R/Ien's Christian Association, in which he 
is serving as director and second vice president. He usually votes with 
the republican party, but does not consider himself bound by party ties. 
His life in its varied phases and connections commends him to the con- 
fidence, esteem and honor of his fellowmen. His business interests have 
been extensive and of an important character as factors in the commer- 
cial and industrial circles of the city, and in positions of responsibility 
he has displayed keen executive force, bending his energies to constructive 
efforts which have resulted in the development of large and profitable 
concerns. He regards business, however, as but one phase of life, nor 
allows it to warp his finer sensibilities or claim his attention to the ex- 
clusion of outside interests. He fully recognizes his obligations to his fel- 
lowmen and meets every responsibility that devolves upon him. 



JACOB B. HENN. 



Jacob B. Henn, secretary of the Peerless Tank and Seat Company, which 
business he established in 1905, was born in the state of New Jersey, June 
25, 1858. The name indicates his German origin. His parents, John and 
Lena Henn, were both natives of the fatherland and after coming to America 
in 1848, lived for a time in the east but are now residents of Evansville. The 
father is a carpenter by trade, devoting his entire life to building pursuits. 

Jacob Henn is one of a family of seven children, all of whom are yet 
living. His youthful days were devoted to the acquirement of an education 
in the public schools until he reached the age of eighteen years when he 
started out to earn his own living and secured a position as grocery clerk. 
He was employed in that way until he reachead the age of twenty-two years, 
when he went upon the road as a traveling salesman for a grocery house. 
Later he took out a special line of goods, representing a Cincinnati firm, 
Potter, Parian & Company, his territory covering Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky 
and Illinois. For fifteen years he continued upon the road in that connection 
and his long identification with the house indicates satisfaction on both the 
part of employer and employe. He succeeded in building up a good trade 
and wherever he went made friends among his patrons. Through the in- 
fluence of his younger brother, William A. Henn, who made some inventions 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 115 

along this line, Jacob B. Henn turned his attention to his present line of busi- 
ness in connection with the Sanitary Manufacturing Company of Hamilton, 
Indiana, his brother being at that time superintendent. Jacob B. Henn occu- 
pied the position of manager and superintendent for about seven years and 
then resigned to come to Evansville in 1905, in which year he organized the 
Peerless Tank and Seat Company. In the intervening years the business 
has grown steadily and rapidly until the trade now extends all over the 
United States and Mexico and the plant is being operated to its full capacity. 
The house is ever found reliable in all its business transactions and the 
honesty of its methods is undoubtedly one of the factors of its success. 

In 1884 Mr. Henn was married to Miss Louisa Eisel, a native of Ohio, 
and they have become the parents of two daughters, Gertrude, now the wife 
of Julius H. Schuttler, and Margaret, at home. Mr. Henn presents in his 
life many of the sterling characteristics of his Teutonic ancestry, having the 
firm purpose and persevering spirit which have ever characterized the Ger- 
man race. He also seems imbued with a spirit of enterprise which has ever 
dominated the middle west and has so controlled and managed his business 
affairs that he is now at the head of a profitable manufacturing concern. 



JOHN LAVAL. 



While John Laval was widely known in Evansville through his business 
relations, his activities were never self-centered but reached out to those 
lines which touch the political, social, intellectual and moral progress of the 
community and work for the good of mankind. A man of broad mind and 
of public-spirited citizenship, Evansville availed herself of his cooperation 
in many ways to further her growth and promote her upbuilding. His judg- 
ment was sound, his insight keen and his sagacity far reaching, and his in- 
fluence was such that his name in support of any public project was the 
influence which drew to it the support of many others. 

Mr. Laval was born in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, on the 24th of May, 
1826, and had therefore passed the seventy-third milestone on life's journey 
when he was called to his final rest on the 2d of Septemiber, 1899. His 
youthful days were spent under the parental roof in his native land. His 
father, who was forest master, died in the year 1841, after which the family 
removed to the city of Mainz. There he learned the druggist's trade and 
had gained an expert knowledge of the business when he sought the oppor- 
tunities of the new world, coming to Evansville in 1849. The following 
year he opened a drug store on Main street and later removed to the loca- 
tion where the business is still conducted by his sons. For almost forty 
years he continued successfully in the trade in Evansville, remaining as 
proprietor of the establishment until 1889, when he retired. He also en- 
gaged in the practice of medicine for twenty years and had comprehensive 



116 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

knowledge concerning the use of medicinal properties as well as expert 
skill in compounding them. He not only carried a large stock of goods but 
also maintained a store which was neat and attractive in its arrangement. 
His attention, however, was not confined merely to the drug trade, for in 
financial circles he was widely known and in 1870 was elected treasurer of 
the People's Savings Bank, which position he filled for seven years. At 
different times he invested in real estate until he was the owner of consid- 
erable property, including two large business blocks which he erected — the 
well known Laval building and another on West Franklin street. His judg- 
ment was seldom, if ever, at fault in matters of business and the same keen 
discrimination was manifest in the conduct of the duties of public offices 
to which he was called by his fellow townsmen. He served as county com- 
missioner in the '80s and for four years before his death filled the position 
of trustee in the Willard library. 

Mr. Laval was united in marriage to Miss Mary Krou, of Evansville, 
and they became the parents of eleven children, eight of whom are now liv- 
ing, namely : Mrs. George Brose ; Henry, who is engaged in the drug busi- 
ness ; William, a member of the medical profession ; Mrs. Tom Brose ; Mrs. 
Fred Geiger, Jr.; Mrs. Ed Nesbit; Otto, who is engaged in the real-estate 
business; and Ed. One son, Charles F. H., who reached mature years, is 
now deceased, and George and Emma have also passed away. 

The family attend St. John's church, of which Mr. Laval was also a 
communicant. His political allegiance was given to the republican party 
but while probably not without that ambition which is the incentive for 
faithful service on the part of public officers, he regarded the pursuits of 
private life as abundantly worthy of his best eflforts. He was, however, 
always active in the interests of a greater Evansville and his rare aptitude 
and ability in achieving results made him constantly sought and often 
brought him into prominence in public connections. There is probably not a 
man of large private interests in this city that has felt a more hearty con- 
cern for the public welfare. 



VALENTINE SCHENK. 

Valentine Schenk is the owner of a good farm of fifty acres in Center 
township. It is in this township that he was born on the 2Sth of February, 
1871. He is of German descent, as the surname indicates, his parents 
having been Valentine and Gertrude Schenk, both of whom were born in 
Germany. Indians were still living in this section of the state when they 
crossed the Atlantic and took up their abode in Vanderburg county. The 
land was nearly all wild and unimproved and many districts were covered 
with a dense forest. The father purchased one hundred and twenty acres of 
land from the government, paying the usual price of a dollar and a quarter 
per acre. Not a furrow had been turned or an improvement made upon 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 117 

the place, but with characteristic energy he began its development and con- 
verted it into a good property, upon which he made his home until his 
death, which occurred on the 12th of October, 1880. He is still survived 
by his widow, who is now living with her son Valentine. The father was 
an enterprising farmer and a respected and worthy citizen. 

Valentine Schenk was reared under the parental roof to the age of 
eighteen years, attending the public schools in the winter months while in 
the summer seasons he assisted in the work of the fields. At the age of 
eighteen he started out in life on his own account and has since provided 
for his support by earnest, persistent and honorable labor. He began by 
working as a farm hand by the month and was thus employed for about two 
years, when he returned home and purchased the old homestead, which he 
has since been cultivating. He has made a number of improvements upon 
the place and now has fifty acres of land devoted to the raising of the crops 
best adapted to soil and climate. He annually gathers good harvests as 
the reward of his labors and is persistently and energetically carrying on 
business. 

In August, 1901, Mr. Schenk was united in marriage to Miss Lena 
Ochsner, a daughter of Frank and Lena Ochsner, the former a native of 
Germany and the latter of Kentucky. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Schenk have 
been born three children, Raymond, Rosie and Catherine, aged respectively 
eight, seven and five years. Mr. Schenk makes it the purpose of his li'fe 
to provide a good living for his family and to this end he is carefully cul- 
tivating his farm.. He gives his political allegiance to the democratic party, 
but never seeks nor desires office. Both he and his wife attend the Cath- 
olic church and it was in the German Catholic schools that he was edu- 
cated. They are rearing their children in that faith, for they are loyal ad- 
herents of the church. Mr. Schenk has always lived in Vanderburg county 
and those who have known him from boyhood recognize the fact that his 
his Hfe has displayed many sterling characteristics which have merited the 
warnn regard in which he is uniformly held. 



WILLIAM S. FLEENER. 

William S. Fleener started in business for himself by renting land. Now 
he is the ovmer of a good farm which is proof of the fact that his life has 
been well spent, his energy and industry bringing him to a position among 
the well-to-do residents of Center township. He was born in this state 
July 13, 1858, and his parents, John J. and Eliza (Bilderback) Fleener, 
were also natives of Indiana. The father was widely and favorably known 
as a leading merchant of Pleasantville, Indiana, for about thirty years, 
but at length withdrew from commercial circles and turned his attention 
to farming. In this connection he dealt largely in tobacco but at the present 



118 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

time is living retired, although he still makes his home on a farm near 
Heasantville, Indiana. His wife died in the year 1890. 

The youthful days of William S. Fleener were spent under the parental 
roof, and the lessons of energy, economy and industry which were instilled 
into his mind by his father's foresight, have since borne rich fruit. At the 
age of twenty-three years he left home to estabHsh a home of his own in 
his marriage to Miss Martha M. Moye, a daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth 
(Campbell) Moye, both of whom were natives of North CaroHna. The 
young couple began their domestic life upon a tract of land which he rented, 
and for ten years he continued to cultivate leased land, but during that period 
carefully saved his earnings until his economical expenditure and industry 
made it possible for him to purchase a farm,. He then invested in land 
in Pike county and about the same time his wife inherited a farm in Posey 
county. They took up their abode upon the latter and there lived for a 
number of years, after which they removed to Evansville, where they re- 
mained for three years. On the expiration of that period Mr. Fleener 
bought a farm in Water county, and operated it for six years, after which 
he traded that property for another farm and in 1909 purchased forty-one 
acres of land in Center township. His time and attention are given to the 
cultivation and improvement of this property and to the work of the min- 
istry. He became an ordained minister of the Baptist church in 1903, and 
has since been preaching, dividing his time between the work of the farm 
and his efforts to promote the interests of the church. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Fleener have been born three children : Ida L., who 
is married and lives in Evansville ; Minnie M., who is married and lives at 
home; and Louise, who died in 1892. Mr. Fleener has always voted with 
the democratic party, believing that its principles are most conducive to 
good government. His family are members of the Baptist church and 
his efforts are proving of considerable potency in extending the influence 
of the church in this part of the state. All who know him entertain for 
him the highest regard because of his upright, honorable life and his de- 
votion to duty. 



CHARLES E. JETT. 



Charles E. Jett, president and general manager of the Jett- White Elec- 
tric Company, dealers in electrical supplies and machinery, was born in 
Lawrence county, Illinois, September 5, 1877, and is a son of J. B. and 
Amanda Elizabeth Jett. While spending his boyhood days in his parents' 
home he pursued his education in the public schools, continuing his studies 
until he reached the age of eighteen years, when he began traveling for the 
Western Union Telegraph Company, thus making his initial step in the 
business world. He was employed in installing telegraph stations and 




CHARLES E. JETT 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 121 

building telegraph lines for three and a half years and on the expiration of 
that period went to Cleveland, Ohio, where he engaged with the Cleveland 
Electric Illuminating Company as construction foreman for five years. 

The succeeding year was spent as a vacation at his home in Lawrence 
county, Illinois, after which Mr. Jett went to Vincennes, Indiana, where 
he was connected with the Vincennes Light & Power Company as manager 
of the electric department for two years. Later he came to Evansville and 
engaged with the D. E. Berry Electric Company as general manager for 
two and a half years. Mr. Jett then succeeded Mr. Berry in business, 
admitted Elmer S. White to a partnership, and under the firm style of the 
Jett- White Electric Company they have since conducted a profitable busi- 
ness as manufacturers and wholesale and retail dealers in electric supplies 
and machinery, with offices and plant at No. 30 Main street. 

On the 13th of October, 1900, in Cleveland, Ohio, Mr. Jett was united 
in marriage to Miss Iva Harvey, and they have three children, Thelma, 
Catharine and Charles Melburn, aged respectively nine, five and three 
years. In his political views Mr. Jett is a republican and while he cares 
nothing for office is always loyal in his support of the principles in which 
he believes. Fraternally he is connected with the Modern Woodmen of 
America, while his religious faith is manifest by his membership in the 
Baptist church. His life has in a way been quietly passed but it has been 
characterized by fidelity to duty and by the honorable improvement of oppor- 
tunity, and in that way he has gradually worked upward in the business 
world. 



LEO KEVEKORDES. 



With aptitude for successful management, Leo Kevekordes is now con- 
trolling the interests of the Buehner Chair Company as its president, to 
which position he was called in July, 1907. He was born in Cologne, Ger- 
many, August 7, 1849, ^nd is a son of Clemens and Catharine Kevekordes. 
The father, also a native of Germany, died in 1882. 

After pursuing his early education in the public schools to the age of 
fourteen years, Leo Kevekordes attended a trade school for nine months and 
then came to America, seeking the broader business opportunities of the 
new world. He made his way direct to Cincinnati, Ohio, where he followed 
cabinet-making until 1869, when he came to Evansville — a young man of 
twenty years. With the trade interests of this city he has been closely 
identified for many years, excepting only a brief period spent in Vincennes. 
On his arrival here he engaged with the Armstrong Furniture Company 
as cabinet-maker, occupying that position until 1874. He afterward became 
an employe of the Joseph F. Reitz Furniture Company, having charge of 
the plant until 1879. In the latter year he went to Vincennes, Indiana, as 



122 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

foreman of the factory of the Spiegel & Roberts Furniture Company for 
two years. Returning to Evansville, Mr. Kevekordes with others organ- 
ized the Indiana Furniture Company, of which he was general manager. 
Later he was elected secretary and manager and so continued until he sold 
out in December, 1906. In July, 1907, he became extensively interested 
financially in the Buehner Chair Company, of which he was elected presi- 
dent. This enterprise has since been successfully conducted and now fur- 
nishes employment to sixty-five men in the manufacture of straight and 
rocking chairs. Their product is shipped to all parts of the United States 
and their business has grown along substantial lines, making theirs one of 
the important industries of the city. Every well regulated and honorably 
conducted business enterprise is a benefit to the community in which it is 
located and the source of the city's commercial prosperity and Mr. Kevek- 
ordes as president of the Buehner Chair Company is now classed with the 
prominent and valued business men of the city. 

On the 17th of June, 1874, in Evansville, Mr. Kevekordes was united 
in marriage to Miss Catharine Schrader, who died in December, 1886, leav- 
ing four children : Clemens, now thirty-three years of age ; Theodore, aged 
thirty-one ; Mrs. Margaret Stahlman ; and Leo, who died when twelve years 
old. In June, 1887, Mr. Kevekordes was again married in Evansville, his 
second union being with Mrs. Louise Weber, and they now have three 
children : Louis Puster, twenty-three years of age, who is shipping clerk for 
the Buehner Chair Company; Carl, seventeen years of age, also with the 
company; and Minnie, a young lady of sixteen years, now attending high 
school. 

In his political views Mr. Kevekordes is a republican and in religious 
faith a Catholic. He became a member of the Knights of Pythias fra- 
ternity in 1876 and he belongs to Lessing Lodge of Masons. His energy 
and enterprise are unfaltering and along lines of well directed business 
activity he has advanced far toward the goal of success. 



WILLARD CARPENTER. 

On the roll of Evansville's honored dead appears the name of Willard 
Carpenter, who in every relation of life bore himself with signal dignity and 
honor. His activity in business contributed to the material development of 
the city and as he prospered he experienced the joy of generous giving, for 
his open-handed liberality constituted a beneficial factor in the existence of 
various charities and benevolent institutions. A native of Vermont, he was 
born in Straflford, March 15, 1803. His father, Willard Carpenter, Sr., was 
born April 3, 1767, and died on the 14th of November, 1854. He was mar- 
ried in Woodstock, Connecticut, February 23, 1791, to Miss Polly Bacon, 
whose birth occurred March 15, 1769, and who passed away on the 4th of 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 123 

March, i860. Their family of twelve children were all born and reared on 
the same fann. Mrs. Polly Carpenter lived to have around her twelve chil- 
dren, fifty-two grandchildren, fifty-three great-grandchildren and one great- 
great grandchild — one hundred and eighteen lineal descendants. 

The life history of Willard Carpenter, of this review, is the thrilling story 
of a man who carved out his own fortune. Endowed by nature with strong 
mentality, possessing the thrift and energy characteristic of New England, 
combined with great powers of physical endurance and pluck, he gradually 
advanced from a place of poverty through the stages of successful financial 
development until he obtained not only the plane of affluence but also that of 
wealth. His youthful days were spent upon the home farm with the three 
winter months devoted to the acquirement of an education in the httle log 
school house near his father's home. He remained under the parental roof 
until eighteen years of age, and even in his boyhood days manifested the 
strong and admirable business qualifications which wrought for success in 
later years. His first earnings — twenty-five cents — were secured by digging 
snake root. This money he put out at interest until it amounted to seven 
dollars. He then determined to go west and, slinging his possessions in a 
bundle over his shoulder, he made his way to Mohawk and on through 
Troy, New York, about the time of the great fire in that city in 1822. Upon 
reaching Albany he invested his little capital in notions and with his stock in 
trade worked up the Mohawk valley toward Buffalo. He then proceeded 
westward along the lake shore of Ontario and of Erie as far as Salem, Ohio, 
where, having disposed of his notions, he rested for a time with an uncle. 
Indolence and idleness, however, were truly foreign to his nature and as he 
could not content himself without some work to do, in the summer and 
autumn of 1822 he was employed in the woods and with two companions 
cleared eighty acres of forest land. His wages for this labor were five dol- 
lars per acre, but owing to the scarcity of currency he was given notes of 
hand, payable in grain. After disposing of his notes he turned to the profes- 
sion of teaching, taking charge of a district school. By spring his salary 
amounted to one hundred and forty dollars and he was again paid in grain 
notes. About that time he began learning the tanner's and shoemaker's 
trades, but six months convinced him that the pursuits were not congenial to 
his taste. He then went back to the state of New York and secured a posi- 
tion in connection with the building of the Erie canal. The wages and work 
were satisfactory, but the accommodations furnished were so poor that he 
gave up that position and accepted a school at Glenfield Corners. In 1824 
his father, in order to induce him to return home, offered him a farm and 
six hundred dollars, but this he refused, being determined to make his own 
way unaided. Two years later he visited his father and with his brother 
John went to Troy, New York, where they engaged in merchandising. This 
partnership was afterward dissolved, and with another brother, Willard Car- 
penter continued in the business for ten years. 



124 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

The year 1837 witnessed the arrival of Willard Carpenter in Evansville, 
whither he came at the sohcitation of A. B. Carpenter, whom he joined in 
the wholesale dry goods and notion business. Success attended the new 
enterprise for a period, but like hundreds and thousands of other firms they 
were caught in the wide-spread financial panic of 1837. Mr. Carpenter, who 
had returned to Detroit to settle up his business interests there, found things 
in a deplorable condition when he again came to Evansville, but his quick 
action and business ability enabled him to realize on most of his accounts. 
From that time forward he was closely associated with the development and 
progress of Evansville. At a public meeting which was called in 1842 it was 
resolved to ask an appropriation of lands to aid in the completion of the 
Wabash & Erie canal. Mr. Carpenter circulated the petition for this in 
seventeen different states and through five different legislatures, personally 
meeting the expenses connected therewith. His zeal in behalf of beneficial 
public interests was, perhaps, the predominant feature in his life. He was 
actuated by a spirit of loyalty to the welfare and progress of the community 
that none questioned, and his labors on the whole were extremely effective, 
far-reaching and beneficial. In 1849 he was one of the principal factors in 
promoting the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad, subscribing largely to the 
movement and taking more stock than any two men in the country. In 
1853, after he resigned his position as a director of the railroad company, he 
with ex-senator O. H. Smith, entered into an agreement to build a railroad 
from Evansville to IndianapoHs, later known as the "Straight Line." Mr. 
Carpenter concentrated his energies upon this work. His strong intellect 
was called to solve the problems in connection with the undertaking and his 
energy faltered not in the prosecution of a project in which he had firm 
faith. Mr. Carpenter himself subscribed sixty-five thousand dollars of the 
sum raised for the road, amounting to over nine hundred thousand dollars. 
The work progressed and fifty-five miles of the road bed was completed. 
Mr. Carpenter then went to Europe to purchase rails, but while he was 
abroad a pamphlet was issued misrepresenting conditions among bankers and 
rail makers in London, Paris and Wales. His work was therefore, tempo- 
rarily brought to a standstill. Every avenue of opportunity seemed closed but 
after much hard work he finally called upon Vorse Perkins and Company, of 
London, who had a branch in New York, and the purchase was consum- 
mated, but the Evansville city council vetoed the bonds which he was to 
give in security for the rails and the project of building the road therefore 
fell through, after Mr. Carpenter had spent thousands of dollars in its 
behalf. The city later learned with regret the mistake that it had made in 
thus blocking the progress of the enterprise. 

Not alone along the line of material development but also in the field of 
charity and benevolence Mr. Carpenter put forth earnest effort. His dona- 
tion was made in 1865 led to the founding of the Christian Home, the object 
of which was to provide a home for and secure the reform of homeless girls 
who had gone astray. He gave in all about ten thousand dollars to this 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 125 

work and his donations to various churches for specific needs amounted to 
at least fourteen thousand dollars more. In 1840 he erected a building on 
his own land and established a poor house system whereby the paupers were 
maintained at a great saving to the county. This was accomplished during 
his five years' service as county commissioner, and he proved the practica- 
bility as well as the economy of the project. 

In public office as well as in private Hfe Mr. Carpenter accomplished re- 
sults that were of value as progressive agents in the upbuilding of the com- 
monwealth. In 1851 he was elected a member of the state legislature and 
while serving in the house was instrumental in securing the passage of 
various important bills. His name thus became indelibly impressed upon 
the pages of Indiana's history. Moreover there stands as a splendid monu- 
ment to him the Willard library, a most magnificent gift. The institution 
was endowed by him and was the crowning work of a noble life. His later 
years were devoted almost entirely to philanthropic and charitable purposes. 
While he prospered, becoming owner of large tracts of land in Evansville 
and vicinity, he regarded himself but as the steward in charge of these es- 
tates and rendered a strict account for that which had been entrusted to his 
care. 

In February, 1838, Mr. Carpenter was united in marriage to Miss Lucina 
Barcalow, of Saratoga, New York, who at all times was a helpmate to him 
in her generous sympathy for and assistance in the work which he did for 
the benefit of the unfortunate and the needy. The death of Mr. Carpenter 
occurred November 6, 1883, and his wife passed away June 30, 1884. They 
became the parents of five children, including Albert W. Carpenter, who 
married Miss Ida May Pattison, a daughter of Colonel Robert Pattison, who 
died at the home of Mrs. Carpenter in this city, April 30, 1885. For years 
he was numbered among the distinguished residents of this section of Indi- 
ana. He was born in Belfast, Ireland, in 1825, and at his death left a widow 
and three children ; George A. Pattison, E. Pattison, and Mrs. Carpenter, all 
of Evansville. Colonel Pattison was a man of marked intellectual force and 
of splendid physical development, his powers being used for the furtherance 
of interests which were of benefit to the community at large as well as a 
source of individual advancement and success. 

The Carpenter home was for many years the most imposing residence in 
this section of the state. It was located at No. 13 Carpenter street, the work 
of construction being begun in 1848. It was ready for occupancy in 1849, 
and Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter went to New York where they purchased 
elegant, magnificent and tasteful furnishings that are still to be found in the 
house. Its genial and warm-hearted hospitality is also one of its most attrac- 
tive features. Mr. Carpenter never measured friendship by worldly posses- 
sion. True worth could always win his high regard, and no man had greater' 
appreciation for the qualities of nobility and honorable manhood. His 
strong mentality, his unfailing sympathy, his kindly spirit and his genial dis- 
position made him the friend of the highest and of the humblest. It was 



126 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

thus that he left notably impress upon Evansville, causing his memory to be 
revered and honored by all who knew him. Although more than a quarter 
of a century has come and gone since he has passed away, he is of 
"The choir invisible, 
Of those immortal dead who live again 
In lives made better by their presence." 



FRIEDRICH LAUENSTEIN. 

Friedrich Lauenstein, who departed this life in this city six years ago 
in the midst of a useful career, was well known in the newspaper circles 
of Indiana and gained many friends in the course of a long career during 
which he administered to the happiness and permanent welfare of others 
in an important degree. He was born at Hanover, Germany, September 
lo, 1845, the son of William and Wilhelmina (Reinecke) Lauenstein, and 
was educated and grew to manhood in the fatherland. His brother, Dr. 
Carl Lauenstein, had come to this country and located at Evansville. In 
1868 he purchased the Evansville Demokrat and at once invited his 
brother Friedrich to come to this city and take charge of the paper. The 
invitation was gladly accepted and the latter became permanently identi- 
fied with Evansville and in a few years gained an established reputation 
in newspaper and business circles in this portion of the state. He was 
also for a time in charge of the Evansville Courier, which he conducted 
with an energy that produced highly satisfactory results. The Demokrat 
is now owned by Frederick W. Lauenstein, and is under his efficient man- 
agement. The son seems to have inherited many of his father's traits as 
a newspaper man. 

Mr. Lauenstein possessed excellent business capacity, and for a num- 
ber of years was a member of the board of directors of the Citizens Na- 
tional Bank. He was also a member of the school board but although 
frequently urged to enter political life, always declined to do so, his tastes 
leaning in the direction of business rather than politics. He was a con- 
sistent advocate of the platform of the democracy but in local affairs often 
supported men who were not of his party affiliation, but whom he admired 
on account of their ability and character. 

On the i6th of February, 1871, at Evansville, Mr. Lauenstein was 
united in marriage to Miss Constanze Scheller, who proved to him a 
worthy and loving companion. Four children were bom of this union, 
one of whom died at the age of four years. The surviving children are: 
Anna, now Mrs. George Fink; Minnie E., now Mrs. Herman C. Frick; 
and Frederick W., who married Elizabeth Fares. 

Mr. Lauenstein died July 12, 1904. Although born and reared in Ger- 
many, until he was twenty-one years of age, he early adapted himself to 




FRIEDRICH LAUEN8TEIN 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 129 

the customs and manners of a new country and no citizen was more up- 
right or more willing to make sacrifices for the pubHc welfare. For many 
years he occupied a prominent position in Evansville and contributed in 
no small degree toward the upbuilding of the city. He was a man of 
genial and lovable disposition, and the beautiful home on Washington 
avenue now occupied by the family, one of the most attractive residences 
of the city, is a visible evidence of his character and of his love for those 
to whom he was bound by ties that the passage of years cannot efface. 
He inherited the noblest instincts of the Teutonic race and by many acts 
of kindness and charity he demonstrated his sympathy and helpfulness for 
others, which is the dominating characteristic of a true gentleman. 



JOSEPH MARX. 

Through a period of forty-four years Joseph Marx has lived in Van- 
derburg county. This covers his entire life, so that he is yet comparatively 
a young man. That he has used his time to good advantage is indicated in 
the fact that he is now the owner of a well improved property of one hun- 
dred and seventy-two acres situated in Center township, all of which has 
been acquired through his own labor. He was bom in March, 1866, and 
is a son of Peter and Elizabeth Marx, both of whom were natives of Ger- 
many. On coming to America the father settled in Vanderburg county, 
being among its earliest residents. The conditions of pioneer life were 
here to be found at that time. With persistent energy he labored to de- 
velop a farm, purchasing two hundred and seventy acres of land which 
was entirely wild and unimproved when it came into his possession. His 
diligence soon wrough a marked transformation, however, and as the years 
passed his labors were rewarded with good crops, making him in time one 
of the substantial citizens of the community. He continued a worthy and 
respected resident of Vanderburg county until his death, which occurred 
April 28, 1906. His wife had passed away on the 8th of November, 1897. 

Joseph Marx was reared as a farm boy with the usual experiences 
that come to those who spend their youthful days amid an agricultural 
environment. The Catholic schools afforded him his educational privileges 
and the summer months were largely devoted to the work of the fields. He 
remained with his parents until 1890, when he established a home of his 
own, being at that time united in marriage to Miss Annie Enkenhausen, 
a daughter of Conrad and Franziska Enkenhausen, natives of Germany. 

Following their marriage the young couple took up their abode in Cen- 
ter township, Mr. Marx purchasing eighty-seven acres of land. His at- 
tention was devoted to its improvement for some time, during which period 
he prospered, so that he was able to purchase an additional tract of forty 
acres. Still later he added forty-five acres more and is now the owner of 



130 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

a valuable and extensive farm of one hundred and seventy-two acres, which 
he carefully cultivates and from which he secures good crops. He has 
made excellent improvements on his land and his is one of the fine farm 
properties of the township. He has remodeled the house, has erected 
barns and outbuildings and has secured the latest improved machinery to 
facilitate the work of the fields. 

As the years have passed eight children have been added to the house- 
hold; Albert, fifteen years of age; Frank, thirteen years of age; Celia, aged 
ten; Fronie, aged eight; Henry and Tony, twins, five years of age; Ed- 
ward, three years ; and Raymond, who is in his first year. Mr. Marx be- 
longs to the lodge of the Woodmen of the World at McCutcheonville and 
he gives his political support to the democratic party. He and his family 
are communicants of the Catholic church and he is accounted one of the 
progressive business men and farmers of the community whose diligence 
and determination constitute the basis of his business advancement. 



CHARLES F. DIEKMANN. 

Charles F. Diekmann, the secretary and treasurer of the Crescent Stove 
Works, is one of the young business men of Evansville who is rapidly forg- 
ing to the front by reason of a spirit of enterprise and a strong and de- 
termined purpose that will brook no obstacles but pushes resolutely for- 
ward along the path of success. 

He was bom in this city, September 29, 1880, and is a son of Charles 
and Anna Diekmann, who were natives of Germany. Coming to the new 
world, they arrived in this city about i860 and the father became superin- 
tendent of the Evansville Foundry Association, in which business connec- 
tion he remained until his life's labors were ended by death in June, 1901. 
His widow still survives him and makes her home here. In their family 
were eight children, of whom Charles F. is the eldest son. The others are : 
Emma and Elizabeth, both at home ; Mary, now the wife of William Bock- 
stege, of Evansville; Emilia, now Mrs. A. C. Franke, living in Albert, 
Kansas; Anna, at home; Fred A., who is bookkeeper for the Globe Bosse 
World Furniture Company; and Edward F., who is traveling salesman 
for the Crescent Stove Works. 

Charles F. Diekmann obtained his education in the public schools and 
in a business college, where he pursued a two years' course, thus becom- 
ing familiar with commercial methods. At the end of that time he accepted 
a position as stenographer in the office of the John G. Newman Company, 
where he remained for four years. On the expiration of that period he 
became bookkeeper for the Globe Furniture Company, in which office he 
remained for four years, and then came to the present firm in 1905. He 
is one of the stockholders of the Crescent Stove Works and was elected 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 131 

secretary and treasurer of the company. The steps in his orderly pro- 
gression are easily discernible and his progress marks the extent of his 
ability, industry and close application. He deserves much credit for what 
he has accomplished, as he has worked his way upward unaided. He is 
today the real head of the concern, the trade of which extends far to the 
south, southwest and southeast, while at the plant in Evansville employment 
is furnished to fifty-five men. He is also interested in the new Globe Bosse 
World Furniture Company and the characteristics which he has already 
displayed in the business field indicate that he is ready for larger oppor- 
tunities and that they will come to him. 

In his religious faith Mr. Diekmann is a Lutheran and in political belief 
a democrat. His friends— and they are many — speak of him in terms of 
high regard. They recognize the fact that throughout his life he has not 
been afraid of earnest, arduous work and that faithfulness to duty has ever 
been one of his strong characteristics. 



THEODORE A. ADLER. 

Theodore 'A. Adler was a representative of one of the old families of 
Vanderburg county, and the name has ever been synonymous with industry 
and reliability in business. He was bom in Center township, October 22, 
1862, his parents being Mathias and Maggie (Knaub) Adler, both of whom 
were natives of Germany. On coming to this country they settled in Van- 
derburg county, arriving here in 1854. The father possessed the national 
love and talent for music and for a number of years gave his attention to 
that art as a source of livelihood. Finally he turned his attention to general 
farming, purchasing a thirty-acre tract of land which he owned and culti- 
vated for twelve years. He then sold out and invested in one hundred and 
twenty-five acres in Center township, carrying on that farm until 1902, 
when he divided the place among his children. In addition to that property 
the father also owned one hundred and sixty acres in Gibson county, In- 
diana. He was a man of marked energy who in business affairs carried 
forward to successful completion whatever he undertook. 

Farm work largely occupied the attention of Theodore A. Adler in his 
boyhood days, together with attendance at the public schools. In this way 
he qualified for life's practical and responsible duties. He also enjoyed the 
pleasures of youth but was ready to take up the responsibilities of man- 
hood when he attained his majority. He continued upon the old home farm 
until twenty-six years of age, when he married and began farming on his 
own account renting a tract of land of one hundred acres which he carefully 
cultivated for five years. His success in that period enabled him then to 
purchase the property and with renewed energy he continued its develop- 
ment, transforming it into one of the fine farms of the county. He erected 



132 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

thereon a large and commodious residence and in the rear he built a big 
barn and other outbuildings necessary to shelter grain and stock. He ope- 
rated this place until his death, which occurred on the 29th of March, 1910, 
to the deep regret of all who knew him. 

It was on the 17th of October, 1888, when twenty-six years of age, that 
Theodore A. Adler was united in marriage to Miss Katherine Keil, a daugh- 
ter of Nicholas and Elizabeth Keil, who were natives of Germany. Unto 
Mr. and Mrs. Adler were born two sons and a daughter: George M., a 
young man of good business ability, twenty-one years of age, who is ope- 
rating the home farm for his mother; Amelia J., fifteen years of age; and 
Mathew, a lad of twelve years, now in school. Mr. Adler was ill about a 
year prior to his death, and although everything possible was done for him 
the dread result could not be staid. He was a member of Ben Hur lodge 
and Crescent City court of Evansville, and at one time belonged to the 
Knights of Honor. His study of the political issues and questions of the 
day led him to give his support to the democratic party, while his relig- 
ious faith he evidenced in his membership in the Evangelical church, which 
his family also attend. In his life he displayed many sterling traits of 
character and at all times measured up to the full standard of honorable 
manhood. He was diligent and trustworthy in business; faithful in citi- 
zenship, and devoted to the welfare of his family, and to them he left the 
priceless heritage of an honorable name. 



LYMAN S. FORD. 



Lyman S. Ford, prominent in real-estate circles of Evansville, where 
he has conducted business for a half century, was born in Pickaway county, 
Ohio, July 30, 1845, a son of Charles and Catherine (Halsted) Ford, who 
were natives of Connecticut and Pennsylvania respectively. Each re- 
moved westward in childhood days and they were married in Ohio, where 
they remained for twenty-five years. They then removed to Sullivan 
county, Indiana, where they resided until 1868, and then came to Evansville. 
The father followed farming throughout his entire life, continuing active in 
the development of the fields until his death in 1879. His widow after- 
ward returned to Sullivan county, where she spent her last days, passing 
away there in 1903. 

After mastering the branches of learning taught in the common schools, 
Lyman S. Ford pursued a college course in Merom, Indiana, and also a 
course in a commercial college in Indianapolis, receiving business training 
in that institution for a year. He then returned to the farm in Sullivan 
county, Indiana, and has devoted more or less attention to general agri- 
cultural pursuits to the present time. Other business interests, however, 
have also constituted a source of revenue for him. In 1872 he removed 




TA'MAX S. FOKD 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 135 

to Mount Carmel, Illinois, where he opened the office of the Adams Ex- 
press Company and likewise engaged in the farm implement business in 
association with his younger brother, Harvey. While there residing he 
was married in 1872 to Miss Ella Jones, who was bom and reared in Mount 
Carmel. 

After four years' residence in that city Mr. Ford returned to Evans- 
ville and in 1885 established the real-estate office which he has since con- 
ducted, at the same time supervising his farming interests in Sullivan 
county. At the present time he ranks with the prominent and prosperous 
real-estate dealers of Evansville, handling much property, while his deci- 
sions concerning the value of realty are largely accepted as final. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Ford have been born five children: Ida May, now 
the wife or Corliss Jordan, formerly of Evansville but now a resident of 
Lewiston, Maine ; Nell T., who was married in this city to Charles Hufford 
and is now residing in Tacoma, Washington; George L., who is auditor 
for the Evansville Street Railway Company ; Herbert C, who was formerly 
employed in the office of the general passenger agent of the Southern Rail- 
way Company in Nashville, Tennessee, but has recently been transferred 
to Elko, Nevada ; and Earl, who is an assistant in the traveling passenger 
agents' office of the Louisville & Nashville R. R. 

Mrs. Ford is a member of the Methodist church and a lady of many 
estimable qualities. Mr. Ford gives his political endorsement to the demo- 
cratic party but has never been active in political circles. Business affairs 
have always claimed his undivided attention, and yet he is not remiss in 
the duties of citizenship and no man feels keener interest in the work of 
improvement and development that is being continuously carried forward 
in Evansville, gaining for the city recognition as one of the leading manu- 
facturing centers of the Ohio valley. 



DANIEL M. FAIRCHILD. 

Daniel M. Fairchild, an expert auditor and accountant, with offices in 
the Intermediate Life building in Evansville, was born in this city, Decem- 
ber 4, 1873, and is a son of R. F. and Margaret Fairchild. The father 
was bom in Vanderburg county in September, 1837, and after attaining 
his majority became a painting contractor, in which business he continued 
until the time of his death in 1908. 

In his youthful days Daniel M. Fairchild pursued his education in the 
graded and high schools until sixteen years of age, when he entered the 
Evansville Commercial College for a six months' course, his training being 
in preparation for the profession which he has since followed. After leav- 
ing the school he engaged with the Bank of Commerce in the capacity of 
bookkeeper for five years and afterward spent three years as bookkeeper in 



136 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

charge of the office of the Mechanics' Foundry. Later he was engaged as 
bookkeeper and cashier at the Heilman Machine Works, one of the largest 
manufacturing concerns in the county, which position he filled for five 
years; but, thinking that greater profits might be derived from his labors if 
he worked independently, he opened an office for himself as accountant and 
auditor and in that field has been very successful. A liberal patronage 
has been accorded him, his clients including some of the most important 
concerns in the state, and his expert work insures him the continuance of 
a business that is large and gratifying. He is a pioneer in his line, estab- 
lishing and now conducting the only office of the kind in southern Indiana. 
Mr. Fairchild was married in Evansville, on the 31st of March, 1897, 
to Miss Lillian Townsend. He is widely known and popular in various 
fraternal organizations and has attained the thirty-second degree of the 
Scottish Rite, belonging to Reed Lodge, No. 316, F. & A. M.; Evansville 
Chapter, No. 12, R. A. M. ; Simpson Council, No. 23, R. & S. M.; La- 
Valette Commandery, No. 15, K. T. ; Evansville Lodge of Perfection of the 
Scottish Rite; and Hadi Temple of the Mystic Shrine. He likewise holds 
membership with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and the 
Press Qub, and his social qualities and personal worth are such that those 
who know him are glad to call him friend. 



JAMES R. GOODWIN. 

James R. Goodwin, a representative of the industrial interests of Evans- 
ville, has been both the architect and builder of his own fortunes. During 
the first week of his connection vnth the business interests of this city he 
earned but four dollars and seventy-five cents and his life record proves 
conclusively that the path to prosperity is open to all who have the willing- 
ness and determination to walk therein. With a nature that could not be 
content with mediocrity, he has met every opportunity that has come to him, 
nor has he waited advantageous conditions, having, on the contrary, made 
his opportunities where none have existed. Gradually, therefore, he has 
progressed and is today one of the leading manufacturers of Evansville. 
He was bom in Mississippi county, Missouri, June 18, 1853. His father, 
William M. Goodwin, a native of Washington, Indiana, became a saddler 
and followed the trade for many years in Charleston, Missouri, and 
Leavenworth, Indiana. He served as a soldier of the Civil war from the 
beginning of hostilities until the close and was a sergeant in the First In- 
diana Cavalry. He married Marietta Wilbur, a native of Leavenworth, 
Indiana. 

James R. Goodwin pursued his education in the public schools of 
Leavenworth, Indiana, at Cave in Rock, Illinois, and in the high school at 
Louisville, Kentucky. During the vacation periods in his youthful days he 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 137 

had assisted his father and about the time he attained his majority was 
admitted to a partnership, joining his father in the restaurant business, 
in which he continued for a short time. He then turned his attention to 
industrial pursuits, engaging in skiff building at Cave in Rock, Illinois. 
The skiffs were built in the fall and winter, floated down the Mississippi 
river at the time of the high waters in the spring and sold at southern 
points. Mr. Goodwin continued in that businsess for about a year and in 
February, 1878, removed to Evansville, where he spent about three weeks 
in search of work. At length he obtained a position at gluing bedsteads 
for the Armstrong Furniture Company, working for two weeks at a salary 
of only four dollars and seventy-five cents per week. Such a position 
would, of course, not content a man of his ambitious nature and he sought 
other employment which he found in the Southern Chair Works, at the 
corner of Fourth and Division streets. There he was engaged in rolling 
logs and wheeling sawdust at one dollar a day. After six weekes spent 
in that way he entered the employ of the Evansville & Terre Haute Rail- 
road Company, loading freight for two months. He next solicited adver- 
tising for Tom Groves, to be inserted in the county fair catalog, working 
in the territory around Evansville for two months. At the end of that 
time Mr. Morse, who conducted a bankruptcy shoe store, arranged with him 
to go to Henderson and take charge of a branch store at that place. He 
remained there for six months, at the end of which time the stock was re- 
moved to a new building erected at the corner of Fourth street and Market 
place in Evansville where it was closed out. Mr. Goodwin next secured 
a position as salesman in a dry goods store conducted by Miller Brothers 
where he remained for three years, and on the expiration of that period 
turned his attention to the insurance business in which he prospered so 
that he was able to save considerable money. The capital thus acquired 
was invested in a jeans pants manufactory, the product being known as 
buckskin breeches. In this enterprise he was associated with Mr. Pleasant 
and afterward with Mr. Harrison, who in turn was succeeded by Wallace 
Cook. Mr. Goodwin continued in that business for fifteen years and found 
it a profitable source of income. In January, 1904, he began the manu- 
facture of plumbers' woodwork, bought out the patents in Chicago of the 
never-split seat and removed the business to Evansville where H. P. Ben- 
nighof and Samuel Jacobson joined him in the conduct of the business now 
conducted under the name of the Never Split Seat Company. Mr. Jacob- 
son and Mr. Bennighof have been succeeded by E. O. and J. S. Hopkins. 
Mr. Goodwin is president of the company with John S. Hopkins as sec- 
retary and treasurer. From the beginning the business has grown steadily 
until it has reached extensive proportions. The output is sold all over the 
United States and in many foreign countries, including France, England, 
Panama, Australia and the Philippines. For manufacturing purposes the 
company uses a large building three hundred by sixty feet with a wing 



138 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

one hundred and sixty by sixty feet. The plant is splendidly equipped with 
the latest improved machinery for turning out work of this character and 
the substantial quality of the output brings a ready sale and makes the 
enterprise one of the important and profitable productive industries of 
Evansville. 

On the Sth of January, 1876, Mr. Goodwin was united in marriage to 
Miss Alice M. Cook, a native of Crittenden county, Kentucky, and they 
now have three children ; Walter C, who at the age of thirty years is as- 
sociated with his father in business; Percy E., twenty-eight years of age, 
who is conducting a moving picture show in Missouri ; and Grace G., now 
the wife of Leslie Williams, of Detroit, Michigan. 

Mr. Goodwin belongs to the Knights of Pythias fraternity. He has 
been very active in politics for more than twenty years, although he devotes 
less time to it now than formerly. He remains, however, an interested 
witness of the political movements of the country, keeping thoroughly in 
touch with the questions of vital import. He has served as a member of 
the city council and was a delegate to the national convention in 1896 
when Wilham Jennings Bryan was first nominated for the presidency. His 
business, however, leaves him little time for outside interests and activities, 
demanding almost his entire time and attention. Gradually he has worked 
his way upward and his own capacities and powers constituted the founda- 
tion upon which he has built his success. Untiring industry, faithfulness 
to every trust reposed in him and enterprising methods have been the domi- 
nant factors in an active life, whereby he has gained recognition as one of 
the leading and worthy business men of Evansville. 



GEORGE M. DAUSSMAN, JR. 

George M. Daussman, Jr., sole agent for Indiana for the F. W. Cook 
Brewing Company of Evansville, was bom in Evansville, January 28, 1883, 
a son of George M. and Anna Daussman. At the usual age he was sent 
to the public schools and mastering the lessons of successive grades even- 
tually entered the high school, from which he was graduated with the class 
of 1901. Throughout his business career he has been connected with the 
F. W. Cook Brewing Company, entering the service of that corporation as 
clerk in the bottle shop office at one dollar per day. He continued to fill 
that position for two years, after which he was placed in charge of the city 
bottle business and so continued until January i, 1910. From that day he 
became a licensed dealer of these bottle products in the city and state of 
Indiana and has since met with excellent success in placing the goods upon 
the market. Something of the growth of his business is indicated in the 
fact that he now uses nine wagons in delivering and employs twelve men. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 139 

Mr. Daussman was married in Evansville to Miss Amelia Gamble, the 
wedding being celebrated on the 26th of June, 1907. Mr. Daussman at- 
tends St. John's Lutheran church and is a member of several fraternal 
societies including the Ranchman and the Eagles. He is well known in 
various German societies including the Liederkranz, the Turners and the 
Concordia Society. 



ERNEST C. MEYER. 

For twenty-one years Ernest C. Meyer has resided upon the farm of 
sixty-acres in Center towmship which he now owns and operates. It is a 
well developed tract of land and moreover it is the visible evidence of a 
life of well directed energy and thrift. He was bom in Germany, October 
12. 1841, and is a son of Frederick and Mary Meyer, who were also natives 
of that country. The father followed the occupation of farming in Ger- 
many and continued in his native land throughout his entire life, being 
called to his final rest in 1873. For about six years he had survived his 
wife, who died in 1867. 

It was previous to this time that Ernest C. Meyer left Germany for 
the new world. His education was acquired in the schools near his father's 
home, and in his youth he had been trained to habits of industry upon the 
home farm. On attaining his majority he determined to test the truth of 
the reports which he had received concerning the business conditions and 
advantages to be found in the United States. Accordingly he crossed the 
Atlantic and, making his way into the interior of the country, settled at 
Elberfield, Indiana, where he remained for six months. On the expiration 
of that brief period he came to Vanderburg county, taking up his abode 
in Evansville, where he secured employment in the tailoring shop of Mr. 
Feldman, for whom he worked for two years. He had learned the tailor- 
ing business in Germany and was therefore well qualified for the position 
which he secured. He was ambitious, however, to engage in business on 
his own account that he might receive the direct reward of his labors, and 
in 1867 he opened a tailoring shop, carrying on business for twenty-one 
years. He enjoyed throughout that period a good trade, for the work 
which he turned out was always satisfactory. He employed competent 
help, carried an attractive line of materials and in style and workmanship 
his product was in keeping with that turned out in the larger cities. In 
1889 he withdrew from the tailoring business and removed to Center town- 
ship, purchasing sixty acres of fine farm land on which he has since re- 
sided. He has erected a large barn here and has made other improve- 
ments, and twenty-one years have now been devoted by him to general 
agricultural pursuits, in which business he has met success similar to that 
which he won at his trade. 



140 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In August, 1865, Mr. Meyer was married to Miss Caroline Schulte, 
a daughter of Henry and Louise Schulte, both of whom were natives of 
G€rmany, in which land the father spent his entire Hfe. The mother after- 
ward came to America and here her remaining days were passed, her 
death occurring in 1898. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Meyer have been bom eight 
children: Louise, aged forty-five years, residing in Evansville; Matilda, 
who is married and also resides in Evansville; Ernest, who in conducting 
a tailoring business in that city; Frederick, who passed away in 1900; 
Henry, who died in infancy; Edward, who at the age of thirty-two years, 
resides at home and assists his father in the cultivation of the home farm; 
Annie, aged twenty-eight years, also at home; and Charles, who passed 
away in infancy. 

Politically Mr. Meyer is a republican and as every true American citi- 
zen should do keeps well informed on the leading questions and issues of 
the day, so that he is able to support his position by intelligent argument. 
He and his family attend the Lutheran church and he is a member of the 
Central Labor Union. His life has been characterized by unfaltering dili- 
gence, determination and perseverance. These have been the dominant 
qualities in his business career and in time have brought him a comfortable 
competence, making him one of the substantial citizens of his adopted 
county. He has never had cause to regret his determination to come to 
the new world, and no native bom citizen of Indiana is more loyal to the 
best interests of the state and nation. 



THOMAS N. BEIDELMAN. 

Thomas N. Beidelman is operating successfully in the field of real estate, 
in which connection he has been well known in Evansville since 1888. 
During this time he has negotiated many important transfers, and it would 
be difficult to find one who is more thoroughly informed concerning the 
real-estate market and conditions in this part of the state than he. His 
birth occurred in the neighboring state of Illinois, Mount Carmel being the 
place of his nativity and the date July 15, 1850. His parents were George 
L. and Jane (Ulm) Beidelman, the latter a great-grandaughter of Edward 
Ulm, a Hessian soldier, who was among those hired by the British troops 
to aid in crushing out the "rebellion" among the American colonists in 
1776. A number of the Hessian soldiers afterward deserted, among them 
Edward Ulm, who, on learning of the real condition here, did not care 
to wage warfare against the Americans. Pleased with the new world, he 
settled in Maryland and afterward resided in southern Illinois. George 
L. Beidelman was a cabinet maker by trade, continuing in that business 
until his life's labors were ended in death in 1871, when he was forty-six 
years of age. At the time of the Civil war he enlisted, in 1861, at Spring- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 143 

field, Illinois, as a member of the Thirty-second Illinois Regiment, and 
served for three years. He then reenlisted and became a first lieutenant 
of the Sixth Mississippi Colored Regiment afterward known as the Fifty- 
eighth United States Infantry. He contracted illness during this time 
which later resulted in his death. His widow is now living in Union 
county, Oregon, in her eighty-first year. 

Thomas N. Beidelman pursued his education in the public schools and 
in a private school in Fairfield, Illinois. He was but eight years of age 
when the family left Mount Carmel, going to Albion, Illinois, whence a 
year later a removal was made to Grayville, Illinois. Another year passed 
and they returned to Mount Carmel in i860, there continuing until 1866, 
when the family home was established at Jeffersonville, Illinois. Three 
years later they removed to Fairfield, Illinois, where Thomas N. Beidel- 
man completed his education and after leaving school began work at the 
cabinet maker's trade with his father. Thinking that he might have better 
opportunities in one of the states west of the Mississippi, he went to White 
Qoud, Kansas, where he remained for two years. Returning to Illinois, 
he settled at Carmi, where he had the contract to erect all of the buildings 
on the fair grounds thirty-one years ago. In 1880 he began the operation 
of a sawmill, establishing the largest enterprise of that character in the 
town. He was meeting with substantial success in the undertaking and had 
a large number of logs in the river above the state dam at New Haven, 
but the farmers in that vicinity banded against him and one night some 
unknown person or persons blew up the dam, letting all the water out, so 
that his logs were ruined by dry rot and worms. He then entered suit 
against the state for eighteen thousand dollars. At that time there was no 
court of claims in Illinois, but his efforts to recover damages led to' the 
establishment of such a court in the year 1888. Mr. Beidelman's attor- 
ney was then appointed one of the members of the board of the court of 
claims and was thus forced to turn his client's case over to another. Mr. 
Beidelman's suit still stands before the board and, with the interest for 
the length of time that has intervened, thirty-five thousand dollars is now 
due him. 

In August, 1888, he left Carmi and came to Evansville, where he 
opened a real-estate office. For two years thereafter he was a partner of 
L. S. Ford, a very prominent real-estate dealer of this city. He has since 
operated alone and is one of the leaders in this line of business in Evans- 
ville. He is thoroughly acquainted with property conditions, understands 
values and knows what is purchasable, so that he can ably attend to the 
wants of his clients. 

When in Fairfield, Illinois, in 1869, Mr. Beidelman married Miss Susan 
B. Fitzgerell, her father being at that time a prominent merchant of Fair- 
field. Both he and his wife are now deceased. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Beidel- 
man have been bom a daughter and son. The former is now Mrs. Maud 
E. Tinker, of Evansville, while the son, I. L. Beidelman, married Ada 



144 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Bullock, of this city, in 1895 and has become the father of one son, Edward 
Thomas. I. L. Beidelman is now connected with the offices of the Louis- 
ville & Nashville Railroad Company. 

In the face of conditions which would have utterly discouraged many a 
man of less resolute spirit Mr. Beidelman has established for himself a 
profitable and growing business, and made for himself an honorable name 
in the business circles of his adopted city. 

(Since the above was written Mr. Beidelman died suddenly December 6, 
1910). 



W. VARNEY DIXON. 



W. Varney Dixon, secretary, treasurer and general manager of the 
Evansville Bookcase & Table Company, has since the outset of his busi- 
ness career placed his dependence upon the substantial qualities of energy, 
determination and perseverance. In the exercise of such qualities difficul- 
ties and obstacles vanish like mists before the morning sun, and therefore 
Mr. Dixon has gradually worked his way upward until called to his present 
responsible position in September, 1910. 

He was bom in Evansville, December 16, 1867, and is a son of George 
L. and Mary J. Dixon. The father was bom in Parkersburg, West Vir- 
ginia, in 1832, and removing westward to Vanderburg county, Indiana, 
settled in Union township, where he secured employment on a farm. Here 
he remained until 1849, when he removed to Henderson, Kentucky, where 
he was connected with general merchandising until 1862. In that year 
he returned to Indiana and took up his abode in Evansville, establishing 
a wholesale shoe business, in which he continued for thirty-six years, or 
until his death in 1898. Throughout that period he was accounted one of 
the foremost merchants of the city, promptly executed well formulated 
plans and at all times conducted his interests in strict conformity to a high 
standard of commercial ethics. 

Born and reared in Evansville, W. Vamey Dixon attended the public 
schools until graduated from the high school with the class of 1884. His 
business training was received under the direction of his father, for whom 
he went upon the road, representing the shoe business as a traveling sales- 
man for twelve years. He then turned his attention to the men's furnish- 
ing goods business, in which he continued on his own account for five years. 
His enterprise and ability then received public recognition in his election to 
the position of secretary of the Evansville Business Association, in which 
position he remained for five years. At the end of that time he was chosen 
secretary and treasurer of the Evansville Bookcase & Table Company and 
in this connection is contributing in substantial measure to the growth and 
development of the business. His experience as secretary of the Business 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 145 

Men's Association has made him thoroughly famihar with the conditions 
of trade here so that he is well qualified to assume active control of one 
of the important industrial interests of the city. 

On the I2th of April, 1898, Mr. Dixon was married in Salem, Illinois, 
to Miss Edith Merritt, and they have two children; George L., eight years 
of age, who is attending the public schools ; and Thomas Merritt, five years 
of age who is now a little pupil in the kindergarten. The parents are promi- 
nent socially and theirs is a hospitable home in which a cordial welcome 
is ever extended to their many friends. 

Mr. Dixon's political endorsement is given to the democratic party. 
He belongs to the Evansville Business Association, to the Travelers Pro- 
tective Association, to the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and 
the Masonic fraternity. He is loyal in his support of each and in fact it 
is characteristic of Mr. Dixon that he is always a stanch adherent of any 
cause to which he pledges himself. His cooperation can be counted upon 
in matters of progressive citizenship and in business transactions his relia- 
bility is above question. 



PHILIP EULER. 



Philip Euler, deceased, was one of the best known insurance men of 
Evansville and this part of the state and his engaging personality made him 
a popular and esteemed citizen. He was born in Germany in 1837, a son of 
Philip and Barbara (Breneis) Euler, who were also natives of Germany. 
When the son was fourteen years of age, the parents crossed the Atlan- 
tic with their family to the new world and after a year spent in Cincinnati 
removed to Evansville, where the family home was established. Here the 
father engaged in business as a wholesale wine dealer, importing wine in 
casks from Europe. He was a man of remarkable strength and weighed 
three hundred and ten younds. He continued a resident of Evansville 
until his death, which occurred when he was seventy-two years of age. 

Philip Euler acquired his early education in the schools of Germany 
and after coming to America took up the study of bookkeeping. He also 
learned the saddler's trade and continued in that line of business until after 
the outbreak of the Civil war. During the period of hostilities he joined 
the army for one hundred days' service and held the rank of lieutenant. 
He first became connected with the insurance business as a representative 
of the firm of Drew & Bennett and from time to time was continuously 
connected with insurance interests until his demise. In 1876 he entered the 
service of the Springfield Fire & Marine Insurance Company as a field 
worker, the western department of the company being established at that 
time. He was capable, earnest and energetic, was thoroughly acquainted 
with every phase of the insurance business and succeeded in building up 



146 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

an extensive clientage. The high regard in which he was held by the com- 
pany that he represented is indicated in the fact that on the nth of July, 
1881, following his death, the company passed resolutions concerning his 
efficiency and the respect entertained for him as a man. 

In 1861 Mr. Euler was united in marriage in Evansville to Miss Susamna 
EUes, a native of this city, and unto them were born six children: Mrs. 
Helen Cramer, Frank, Mrs. Tecla Henry, Philip and Herman, all of Evans- 
ville ; and August, deceased. Mr. Euler reared a fine family and was proud 
of his children and what they accomplished. He was indeed a most de- 
voted husband and father, finding his greatest happiness in the welfare of 
his family, in whose interests he put forth earnest and untiring effort. 
He was, moreover, a public-spirited citizen who cooperated in many move- 
ments for the general good. He belonged to St. John's church and his life 
was an upright and honorable one, winning him the high regard of all with 
whom he was associated. His success was attributable entirely to his own 
labors and the visible evidence of his life was found in the property which 
he owned here. His life in all respects measured up to the highest stand- 
ards of honorable manhood and although almost three decades have come 
and gone since he passed away his memory is yet dear to many who knew 
him. 



HENRY ERHARDT. 



A well improved farm property of sixty acres pays tribute to the care 
and labor which is bestowed upon it by its present owner, Henry Erhardt, 
no-w a well known and representative farmer of Center township. Vander- 
burg county has largely been settled by German residents and those of 
German descent. To the latter class belongs Henry Erhardt, who was bom 
September 19, 1858, in German township — that section of Vanderburg 
county which indicates in its name the fact that it was developed by the 
sons of the fatherland. His parents, John and Elizabeth Erhardt, were 
both natives of Germany and established their home in German township, 
this county, at a very early period, the father purchasing forty acres of 
land. It was entirely wild and unimproved, but he at once began clearing 
away the timber, grubbing up the stumps and plowing and planting the 
fields. In due course of time this tract was transformed into a cultivable 
property, and year by year the fields returned good crops up to the time of 
his death, which occurred September 6, 1872. His wife, also well known 
in the community, passed away in 1889. 

The youthful days of Henry Erhardt were spent upon the old home- 
stead farm to the age of fifteen years, when he began providing for his 
own support by working by the month as a farm hand in the locality. He 
was diligent and reliable, so that he readily secured employment, and thus 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 147 

time passed until he attained his majority, when he felt it incumbent upon 
him to make some arrangement whereby his labors would more directly 
benefit himself. He, therefore, rented land and in this way carried on 
farming for eighteen years, during which period he carefully saved his 
earnings. He then bought sixty acres of land in Center township and with 
renewed courage and determination began the cultivation of the place. He 
has made substantial improvements thereon, supplying the farm with many 
modern accessories. 

In 1882 Mr. Erhardt was united in marriage to Miss Josephine Ehkofer, 
a daughter of George and Christina Ehkofer, who were also natives of 
Germany. This marriage has been blessed with six children: Christina, 
who died in 1883; Henry G., who follows carpentering and lives at home; 
Josephine, twenty-three years of age ; Katy P., twenty years of age ; Aurelia 
E., a young lady of sixteen years ; and Evelyn, ten years of age. The living 
children are all yet under the parental roof. Mr. Erhardt is independent 
in thought and of liberal tendencies. He is a believer in the spiritualist faith 
and in socialistic doctrines — not the doctrine of anarchy but that which 
recognizes the rights of others and seeks a just and equitable division of 
material and political rights and interests. 



WILLIAM STORTON. 



While steam had been introduced as a propelling force in navigation in 
the middle of the nineteenth century, yet the greater part of the trans- 
Atlantic vessels were still propelled by sails. It was on one of the old time 
sailing vessels that William Storton left England for America. Sixty days 
passed — days of storm and of fair weather, ere the ship on which he sailed 
dropped anchor in the harbor of New Orleans. He was then a youth of four- 
teen years, his birth having occurred in the town of Sumersham, in the 
district of Huntington, England, October 16, 1840. 

After a brief period spent in the Crescent city Mr. Storton continued his 
journey up the Mississippi and Ohio rivers to Evansville, and from that time 
afterward was a resident of this city, although his business interests kept 
him much of the time away from home. He had first accepted any employ- 
ment that would yield him an honest living, but improved every opportunity 
for advancement and at length entered the service of James Steele, who 
conducted a planing mill on the site of the Foster home on upper Second 
street. There he remained until he became connected with the Evansville 
Journal. He was with that paper for thirty years before his death, asso- 
ciating himself with the business department in 1866, from which time after- 
ward he contributed in no small degree to the success of the paper. His 
original position was that of mailing clerk and collector. He did efficient 
work in that connection for a few years, when he was appointed to the more 



148 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

responsible position of soliciting for the job and binding departments and 
general advertising. In that connection much of his time was necessarily 
spent upon the road in the interest of the business, and in his travels he made 
many warm friends in Kentucky, Tennessee, Illinois and Indiana. He also 
gained a goodly business for the house, his long connection with the paper 
indicating the regard entertained for him and his ability by the company 
which he represented. 

On the 'i2th of December, 1865, Mr. Storton was married to Miss Mar- 
garet Clark, and unto them were born three children, Allen, Frank and 
Carrie. Mr. Storton was ever devoted to the welfare of his home and family 
and found his greatest happiness in administering to their welfare and com- 
fort. He was also loyal in friendship and his social nature, genial manner 
and engaging personality won him friends wherever he went. He was a mem- 
ber of the Trinity Methodist Episcopal church and ever held to a high moral 
standard in all of his social and business relations. Wherever he extended 
the trade of the house his word became recognized as thoroughly reliable 
and if he ever made mistakes they were errors of judgment and not of the 
heart. He had a kindly feeling for all mankind and in his life proved the 
truth of the Emersonian philosophy that, "the way to win a friend is to be 



COLONEL CHARLES C. SCHREEDER. 

Colonel Charles C. Schreeder, republican representative from Vander- 
burg county to the Indiana legislature, has the distinction of being the 
only citizen of the state ever elected for five consecutive terms to the 
general assembly, thereby becoming the dean of the sixty-sixth session of 
the law-making body of the state. He was first called to office when but 
twenty-one years of age and almost continuously since has been connected 
with the public service, a fact indicative of fidelity to duty, of loyalty to 
principle and to promise and of capability in the discharge of the official 
tasks that have devolved upon him. 

Mr. Schreeder was bom in Berlin, Germany, January 19, 1847, and 
was but five years of age when brought to America by his widowed mother, 
the father having died during the infancy of his son Charles. In 1853 he 
became a resident of Evansville and a pupil in the public schools, therein 
pursuing his studies to the age of fifteen years, when aroused by the spirit 
of patriotism that was spreading throughout the north, he enlisted as a pri- 
vate soldier in the Union army, doing active duty at the front until the 
close of hostilities. 

After the close of the war Mr. Schreeder returned to Evansville and 
in the year in which he attained his majority was elected city assessor. 
Later he was chosen to the office of township assessor and subsequently 




COL. C. C. SCHREEDER 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 151 

to the office of city clerk, and the prompt and faithful discharge of his 
duties won for him high commendation. In 1876 he removed to Hunting- 
burg, Dubois county, Indiana, where he served as postmaster during the 
administration of Presidents Hayes, Garfield, Arthur and Harrison. From 
early boyhood he has taken a deep interest in political affairs and has been 
active in his advocacy of party principles. He organized the first repub- 
lican county central committee in Dubois county, which was the demo- 
cratic stronghold, and served for twelve years as its chairman. In 1880 
he established the first republican newspaper in that county and remained 
its publisher and editor until his return to Evansville in 1894. Long before 
he took his seat in the legislature as one of its duly elected members, he 
was a familiar figure in the house for in 1887, during the fifty-fifth ses- 
sion of the general assembly, he was principal doorkeeper of the house 
of representatives. In 1892 he was commissioned colonel on the staff of 
Governor Chase and was again commissioned in 1897 on the staff of 
Governor Mount. In 1901 he was recommissioned on the staff of Governor 
Durbin and again in 1905 by Governor Hanly. 

In 1900 Mr. Schreeder was elected joint representative to the legisla- 
ture from the counties of Vanderburg, Gibson and Knox and in 1902 was 
reelected from Vanderburg county and again in 1904, 1906 and 1908, thus 
being five times consecutively a member of the house and was renominated 
for the sixth term in 1910, an honor which has not been conferred upon 
any other citizen of the state under the present constitution. By reason of 
these elections he served in the Sixty-second, Sixty-third, Sixty-fourth, 
Sixty-fifth and Sixty-sixth sessions of the general assembly and of the last 
was termed "dean." He has served on many important committees, includ- 
ing the ways and means, appropriation, banking, fees and salaries, the mili- 
tary and other committees. He is the author of several important bills 
which have become laws, securing the passage of a bill appropriating 
twenty-eight thousand dollars for the erection of twenty-two monuments 
on the battlefield of Shiloh in memory of the Indiana troops who partici- 
pated in the engagement there; another appropriating ten thousand dollars 
for the erection of a monument at Andersonville, Georgia, in memory of 
the Indiana soldiers who suffered and died in the Confederate prison stock- 
ade at that place ; and an appropriation of fifteen thousand dollars for erect- 
ing monuments and markers on the battlefield of Antietam, Maryland, in 
memory of the Indiana troops who fought for the Union cause at that point. 
During his legislative career four United States senators have been elected. 
In 1903 he supported Hon. Charles W. Fairbanks, in 1905, Hon. A. J. Bev- 
eridge and Hon. James A. Hemenway and in 1909 voted for the reelection 
of Mr. Hemenway. Colonel Schreeder has always been an active worker 
in the Grand Army of the Republic and has held numerous prominent posi- 
tions in that organization. 

Colonel Schreeder was married in Huntingburg, Indiana, on the 12th of 
April, 1868, to Miss Louise C. Behrens, a daughter of an early merchant 



152 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

of that place. She died April 28, 1892, leaving two children: Emma Mary, 
now the wife of E. W. Nash of New Harmony, Indiana ; and Walter D., 
at home. On the 27th of March, 1894, in Evansville, Colonel Schreeder 
was married to Mrs. Rebecca Keller, widow of the late Charles Keller, a 
prominent merchant here. 

In whatever relation we find him — in government service, in political 
circles, in business or in social circles, — ^he is always the same honorable 
and honored gentleman whose worth well merits the high regard which is 
uniformly given him. That he is a mjm of broad intelligence and genuine 
public spirit has been shadowed forth between the lines of this review. 
Strong in his individuality, he never lacks the courage of his convictions, 
but there are as dominating elements in this individuality a lively human 
sympathy and a sterling integrity which have naturally gained for him the 
respect and confidence of men. 



JAMES CAWSON. 



Among the citizens of Evansville who have passed from the scene of 
earthly activities since the opening of the twentieth century was James 
Cawson, who died on the 30th of June, 1900. He was then seventy-five 
years of age, his birth having occurred in Devonshire, England, in 1825. 
The schools of his native country afforded him his educational privileges 
and he came to America in the later '40s in response to the desire of his 
aunt, Mrs. James Cawson, who after her husband's death sent for his 
nephew and namesake and his sister to come to the new world and make 
their home with her. 

After arriving in Evansville James Cawson of this review entered the 
book store of a Mr. Connington, there remaining for a few years. Later 
he removed to Mount Vernon, Indiana, where he opened and conducted 
a book store on his own account and through the careful management and 
able direction of his business met with substantial success. His commer- 
cial methods were ever honorable and his well formulated plans were care- 
fully and systematically executed. He possessed determined purpose that 
enabled him to carry forward to successful completion whatever he 
undertook. 

During his residence in Mount Vernon Mr. Cawson was married to 
Miss Wannegs, a daughter of Dr. Wannegs, but she only lived for a few 
years. For his second wife Mr. Cawson chose Miss Ellen J. Knowles, who 
was born in Scott township, Vanderburg county, a daughter of Charles 
Knowles and a grandaughter of William Knowles, who came to the 
United States from England when sailing vessels were used in crossing the 
Atlantic and when practically all westward travel across the continent was 
made by the water route. So wild and unsettled was the state that there 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 153 

was but one house in Evansville when he brought his family here. People 
tried to influence him to buy land now included within the present site of 
the city but it was so low and swampy that he regarded it as worthless 
and went back up in the hills and woods in Scott township. There he 
erected a log cabin and cleared a farm, continuing its development until 
his death, the place also remaining the family home for many years. He 
was indeed one of the pioneer settlers of this locality and aided in laying 
a broad foundation for the later development and upbuilding of this sec- 
tion of the state. 

His son, Charles Knowles, was reared amid pioneer surroundings and 
received but limited school privileges. His education was largely acquired 
through his own efforts, by private reading and study and by observation 
and experience as well. He was reared to the farm life, early became fa- 
miliar with the best methods of tilling the soil and carried on general agri- 
cultural pursuits for many years. Moreover he became a prominent factor 
in the affairs of the community and his influence was ever found on the 
side of right and progress. Having reached years of maturity, he wedded 
Miss Mary Ann Maidlow, whose father, G. F. Maidlow, also came from 
England in an early day and settled in Scott township, where he cleared a 
tract of land and improved a farm. Mrs. Cawson, daughter of Charles 
and Mary Ann (Maidlow) Knowles, has been a lifelong resident of Van- 
derburg county and has lived in Evansville since 1895, when Mr. Cawson 
retired from business and removed to this city. 

He was a member of the Episcopal church and his political belief was 
indicated in the loyal support which he gave to the democracy. He did 
not seek nor desire office, however, as a reward for party fealty, being 
content to give his allegiance to the party because of his firm belief in its 
principles. From the time he came to America he continuously made his 
home in Indiana and in every relation of life his record measured up to 
the highest standard of honorable manhood. 



THE KELLER-CRESCENT COMPANY. 

The Keller-Crescent Company, one of the most extensive and important 
printing enterprises of Evansville, is now conducted under the above name. 
The business was founded by Captain W. H. Keller about twenty-five years 
ago and has grown from a small beginning to extensive proportions. At 
the outset there was but a small plant and limited quarters ; today the firm 
has one of the best equipped plants in the state of Indiana and employs 
seventy-five people in the conduct of the business. The house is prepared 
to turn out work of the highest order and the catalogue and label work 
done by the company is shipped over a large territory. The company own 
their own building, which was erected especially for their purposes and 
therefore meets the demands of the trade. 



154 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Emil Weil is the president of the company, a position to which he 
has attained through successive promotions from that of office boy. Enter- 
ing the house in the latter capacity, he has made himself master of every 
branch of the business, thoroughly understands the work of the operative 
department as well as that of the office from which point the business 
interests are managed, and upon the death of Captain Keller, in 1898, he 
became president. His partners in the enterprise are W. G. Burkert and 
H. B. Walton. The former became associated with the business as a young 
man of twenty years in the capacity of bookkeeper and has been advanced 
to the position of secretary. Mr. Walton entered the house about six years 
ago as bookkeeper and upon the death of Captain Keller was made treas- 
urer. Theirs is the only plant in the state that does its own half-tone and 
color work. The presses and other equipments are of the latest models and 
the company ever sustains the highest standard in the excellence of its out- 
put and in the character of service rendered to the public. 



HENRY KORFF, SR. 



Among the successful operators of Evansville, Henry Korff occupies 
a position as a man who won his way by his own exertions to the enviable 
place he occupies. He is a native of Unterliiebbe, by Prois Minden, Ger- 
many, born December 24, 1857. There he was educated but after arriving 
at the estate of manhood he yielded to the promptings which have urged so 
many young men to seek their fortune in a new country and came to 
America, landing in New York in October, 1878. He arrived in Evans- 
ville a few days later, having previously decided to make this city his home. 

Here he was engaged in the brick and tile business for two years, at 
the end of which time he entered the teaming and coal business, with which 
he was identified for many years. In 1898 he associated with C. C. Thomas 
in operating a coal mine at Oay, Webster county, Kentucky. This enter- 
prise proved a total loss, but Mr. Korff had learned not to become dis- 
couraged on account of difficulties and he organized the Banner Coal 
Company, in which he attained a measure of success but closed out his 
interest and began mining on his own account near Boonville in Warrick 
county, this state. He owns the property on which these mines are located 
and under his efficient management the business has grown to very hand- 
some proportions. He also owns a great deal of property in Evansville 
and is identified with the lumber and sawmill business. He also has an 
improved farm of one hundred and thirty-three acres in Vanderburg 
County. As the result of many years of application and industry Mr. Korff 
has attained comparative financial independence and can truly sympathize 
with young men who are striving to attain the same end. 




HENRY KORFF 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 157 

In 1882 Mr. Korff was united in marriage to Miss Caroline Griese, 
who was born in Germany in the same region from which he came. Their 
living children are: Henry Korff, Jr., who married Lenora Schwiersch; 
Fred, who married Julia Boehne; and Carrie Louise Charlotte and Walter 
B., who are twins. Walter B. is superintendent of his father's mines, while 
Carrie is secretary to her father and has charge of his books and personal 
affairs. 

Mr. Korfif belongs to the Evangelical Lutheran church, and is a mem- 
ber of that branch of the denomination worshipping at St. Paul's church 
in Evansville. By his sterling integrity and rectitude of character, he 
has gained a high reputation in the community — a reputation that is worth 
in the end more than all that money can buy. The foundation of his suc- 
cess was established in a strong determination and unfaltering enterprise 
that would not admit of failure, and a confidence in himself that no dis- 
aster can shake. Such a foundation is invincible. 



JOSEPH HUMMEL. 



Earnest and persistent labor has brought Joseph Hummel to a position 
among the representative and successful farmers of Center township. His 
labors have at all times been practical and the spirit of progress has char- 
acterized him in all of his work. He was born in Bavaria, December 27, 
1846, and his parents, Lawrence and Ernestine Hummel, were also natives 
of that country, where they resided until 185 1, when they came to the 
new world, hoping to enjoy better opportunities on the western hemisphere. 
They landed at New York city and there remained for some time. The 
father was a wagon maker by trade and followed that pursuit in the eastern 
metropolis until after the outbreak of the Civil war, when he felt that his 
chief duty was to his adopted country and joined the army, serving for 
three years in defense of the Union. During that period he participated 
in a number of important battles and made a creditable military record. 
When the war was over he returned to his home in the east and in 1869 
brought his family to Indiana. Here he resumed work at the wagon-mak- 
ing trade, which he followed for eleven years, when his life's labors were 
ended in death in September, 1880. About ten years later his wife passed 
away, her death occurring in April, 1890. 

Joseph Hummel was a little lad' of four summers when his parents left 
the fatherland for the United States. The schools of New York city 
afforded him his educational priviliges and in his teens he began working 
at the wagon-maker's trade and afterward entered into partnership with 
his father in that line. Their business relations continued until 1877, when 
they dissolved partnership and Joseph Hummel started alone in business. 
For twenty-eight years he continued to engage in wagon making in the 



158 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

east and then came to Evansville, where he worked at his trade for a few 
years, but the opportunities of the agriculturist interested him and believ- 
ing that he would find farm life congenial and the cultivation of the fields 
profitable he removed to Center township, where he purchased eighty acres. 
He at once set about clearing the land, erected a house thereon and also 
put up barns, sheds and other outbuildings necessary for the shelter of 
grain and stock. Each year has witnessed changes for the better in the 
appearance of his place, which is now a finely improved farm, equipped 
with all modern accessories and conveniences. The carefully tilled fields 
respond in goodly harvests and he also keeps high grade stock upon his 
place. 

At the time of the Civil war Mr. Hummel was foimd among the boys in 
blue, for four years wearing the nation's uniform as he participated in the 
long hard marches or met the enemy in battle in defense of the Union 
cause. It was in December, 1861, that he enlisted and in December, 1865, 
he was honorably discharged, having in the intervening years experienced 
all of the hardships and rigors of war. 

In October, 1875, Mr. Humimel was united in marriage to Miss Annie 
Tempel, a daughter of John and Dorothea Tempel, who were natives of 
Germany. Her father died in 1906, but her mother is now living in Perry 
county, Indiana. Mr. and Mrs. Hummel have become parents of twelve 
children; Mary, a resident of Vanderburg county; Rosalia, who died July 
10, 1895; John, living at home; Maggie, of Evansville; Charles, twenty- 
seven years of age, who aids in carrying on the home farm; and Aurelia, 
twenty-five years of age, Josephine, twenty-three, Catherine, twenty-one, 
Annie, nineteen, Caroline, seventeen, Joseph, fifteen, and Frank eleven 
years of age. The family are members of the Catholic church and Mr. 
Hummel is a republican in his political views. He is as true and loyal in 
the discharge of his duties of citizenship today as when he followed the 
old flag upon southern battlefields. However, he deserves much credit as 
one of the veterans of the Civil war and is, moreover, deserving of respect 
because of his well spent, active and useful life. 



CHARLES F. SCHMIDT. 

Music touches a responsive chord in the breast of almost every individual. 
It is a universal language through which individuals may speak to those of 
alien race. It is the most universally understood and cultivated of all the 
arts and every community recognizes its debt to those who promote musical 
taste and talent, or contribute to public pleasure through this avenue. Promi- 
nent not only in the musical circles of Evansville but throughout the state, 
Charles F. Schmidt is numbered. This city claims him as one of her native 
sons, his birth here having occurred October 27, 1854. His youthful days 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 159 

were not marked by any event of special importance, being largely devoted 
to the tasks assigned to him as a public school student. 

At the age of sixteen Mr. Schmidt entered the employ of the Merchants 
National Bank, but the routine of this life was obnoxious to him and after 
several years devoted to clerical work he entered the field in which he was 
destined to rise to prominence and fame. A musical paper called "Trumpet 
Notes," published in August, 1886, designated him as "one of the best known 
band masters in the country — a gentleman whose intelligent efforts and phe- 
nominal success in his chosen calling have gained him the significant and 
well earned appellation of 'the Gilmore of the west.' . . . Although 
the youngest of band masters in the country," the paper continued, "his 
career has been one continuous line of unbroken success and his record for 
the past seven years is one of which many veterans in the work would be 
proud to boast. At the age of seventeen years he was occupying a prominent 
position in a leading banking house, but his predilection for a musical life 
overcame his mercantile instincts and he abandoned his lucrative position to 
enter a music store at a considerably reduced salary. There he remained for 
a year and at the same time was leader of a small but good orchestra of six 
pieces. At the age of twenty years he purchased and established a music 
business and thus started out for himself. At that time he was a proficient 
performer on any band instrument, but his preference was for the cornet, 
which he had no difficulty in playing the first time that he touched it." It 
was not long after this that Mr. Schmidt organized and instructed a band 
of ten pieces, the members developing so rapidly in skill under his direction 
that soon the bani^ ranked second to none in this section. Although a fine 
theoretical and practical musician, his immense energy and executive ability 
found their greatest scope in the series of annual band tournaments which 
he instituted in Evansville, and which have served to make his name so 
widely known among western band men. He planned for the first of these 
tournaments in 1880, and although only four bands participated, it was a 
creditable and enjoyable occasion. That the initial performance attracted 
wide attention is indicated by the fact that in i88r eight bands were in at- 
tendance, while in 1882 there was a still larger number. It was about that 
time that he formulated the plan of massing them all together. His next 
tournament, held in 1883, attracted widespread attention from the public 
press, and was a leading topic of discussion in musical journals throughout 
the country, sixteen well trained western bands participating. Still he had 
not reached his ideal in this field of work. In 1884 the greatest tournament 
ever seen in the west was held, eighteen bands and two hundred and seventy- 
eight men participating. The street parade alone was over one mile long and 
the music rendered on that occasion was of the highest possible order. 
Another tournament was held in 1885 at which time three hundred and fifty 
dollars in prizes were given. The occasion of these tournaments constituted 
a gala period in the life of Evansville, and not only gave proof of the city's 
musical talent and love for the art, but also served to bring the city in other 



160 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

connections into public prominence, attracting here a large number of visitors. 
Professor Schmidt's ideal did not stop short of perfection. He believed that 
each year should see greater progress in the musical organizations over the 
country, and he constantly stimulated the members of his own band by his 
zeal, interest in and devotion to the art. 

In August, 1878, Professor Schmidt was united in marriage to Miss 
Maggie Elles, a daughter of Captain Augtist Elles, one of the oldest citizens 
of Evansville. Professor Schimdt's fraternal relations were with the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias, and the Masons, and 
in the latter connection he became a Knight Templar. He also belonged to 
St. John's church. There are those who have contributed to the material 
upbuilding of Evansville through business operations, but none have con- 
tributed more largely to the joy and pleasure of her citizens than did Pro- 
fessor Schmidt, whose death on the 19th of November, 1886, was received 
as a public calamity. Almost every Evansville citizen felt a sense of personal 
bereavement. They had long been interested in his life work and felt that 
he belonged to them. It is a question if he whose art uplifts men above the 
drudgery of the workaday world does not do more for the race than he who 
ministers to material comfort through the development of extensive business 
projects. 



HENRY W. KUHN. 



Henry W. Kuhn is the owner of one of the model farm properties of 
Vanderburg county. His home is situated in Center township and he is a 
practical, progressive farmer, his intelligently directed labors bringing him 
substantial success. He was born in Evansville, May 28, 1871, and is a son 
of John J. and Charlotte (Tilius) Kuhn, both of whom were natives of 
Germany. On coming to the United States in 1854 they landed at New 
York city and there remained for a brief period, after which they sought 
the opportunities of a growing western country and came to Evansville, 
arriving here in 1858. Here Mr. Kuhn began work in a flour mill and 
followed that business for about fifteen years. He was also employed by 
George Start in the commission business for a number of years and had 
experience in that line before engaging in the milling business. Later he 
again took up milling and continued in that work until his death, which 
occurred on the ist of March, 1909. He had been a resident of Vander- 
burg county for more than a half century, had witnessed much of its 
growth and development and had borne his full share in the work of public 
progress. His wife died February 28, 1904. 

While spending his youthful days in his parents' home Henry W. Kuhn 
attended the public schools of Evansville and many of the friendships which 
he formed during his school days have continued to the present time. Later 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 161 

he pursued a course in bookkeeping. He was nineteen years of age when 
he made his initial step in the business world, beginning work in a flour mill, 
in which he was employed for eight years. His long connection with that 
industry proved his worth and fidelity. He never sought to shirk a re- 
sponsibility or to cast upon another the duty which he should discharge. 
At length he took up his abode in Center township, purchasing fifty-one 
acres of land, which he has improved to the present time. The property is 
now regarded as one of the model farms of the district, each acre is tilled 
to good advantage and by practicing the rotation of crops he keeps his land 
rich and arable. Sound judgment characterizes him in all of his work and 
his practical management of the place is manifest in the success which has 
come to him. 

On the 4th of January, 1893, Mr. Kuhn was united in marriage to Miss 
Mamie M. Schultz, a daughter of Julius and Marian Schultz, both of whom 
were natives of this state, where the father died April 17, i8gi, and the 
mother was called to her final rest on the 12th of July of the same year. 
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Kuhn have been born two children: Mamie I., now 
seventeen years of age; and Wilhelma K. H., now thirteen months old. 
Mr. and Mrs. Kuhn belong to St. John's Evangelical church and their ster- 
ling qualities have gained for them warm friendship and kindly regard. 
Mr. Kuhn is a member of the Knights of Honor and of the Ancient Order 
of United Workmen and is inclined to support socialistic principles. He 
keeps in touch with the questions of vital interest that afifect public wel- 
fare and his influence is always on the side of progress and reform. 



WILLIAM HENRY KLUSMAN. 

It seems a far distant period when the flat boats were sent down the 
Ohio and Mississippi rivers, carrying the produce of these valleys to the 
New Orleans market, and yet many a time did William Henry Klusman 
load such a boat and go down the river to the Crescent city. In otheit 
ways he was closely connected with many of the early important happen- 
ings of Evansville. His birth occurred in Germany in 1824, and he was 
only four years of age when brought to America by his parentSj Mr. and 
Mrs. Ernst Klusman, who settled first in Cincinnati but soon afterward 
came to Indiana, locating near Princeton, where he resided until about 
1856, when he disposed of his land and came with his family to Evansville. 
Here he built a large foundry — one of the early industrial enterprises of 
the city — which was later sold to the Blount Plow Company. In his later 
years he lived retired. 

William Henry Klusman acquired a good education in the public 
schools of Princeton, and in young manhood was associated with his brother 
in loading the produce from the farm upon flat boats and then going down 



162 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

the river as far as New Orleans, selling at different points, however, along 
the way. At one time he was engaged in the grocery business at Nashville, 
Tennessee, and was well known in Evansville in connection with the foundry 
business, which he developed to extensive proportions. He was prominent 
among the early representatives of industrial life here and for many years 
continued in business, his well directed energy and intelligent effort bringing 
him a gratifying measure of success. 

In 1858, in Evansville, Mr. Klusman was miarried to Miss Therese 
Seigel, a native of France, who came to the United States when nineteen 
years of age. Their only child, Anna, is now the wife of William Kratz, 
and she has one son, Frederick W. Kratz. 

About i860 Mr. Klusman purchased a home on Bond street, where his 
family still reside. He had maintained his residence there for ten years 
when he was called to his final rest. He was one of the most liberal men 
of Evansville where the welfare of the city and its people were concerned, 
putting forth strenuous and effective effort to promote the upbuilding and 
advance municipal interests. He was ever anxious to see water works in- 
stalled here but died just before this was accomplished. He was engineer 
of the old Lemasco fire department, a volunteer system, and was associated 
with Mr. Binkenmeyer in the building of the first little brick church in his 
section of the city. For long years he was active as a member of St. John's 
church, doing everything in his power to promote its growth and extend its 
influence. The democratic party found him among its active supporters 
and frequently he went upon the rostrum, making campaign speeches in de- 
fense of the party candidates and principles. For a number of years he 
served as one of the councilmen of the city and exercised his official prerog- 
atives in support of many measures which have proved of lasting benefit 
to Evansville. He was prominent in the public life of the community and 
his labors at all times partook of a practical, helpful character that made 
him one of the most valued and honored residents of the city. Mrs. Klus- 
man is well known here and has an extensive circle of friends. 



ROBERT LINCOLN HARWOOD. 

Robert Lincoln Harwood, a highly respected farmer of Union town- 
ship, is a native of Vanderburg county and has always lived in the region 
where he was born. He is known as one of the substantial farmers of 
the county and in addition to operating a large farm, which he conducts 
on up-to-date principles, he is the owner of a steam threshing machine, 
which he operates for several months each year with marked success and 
thus assists his neighbors in preparing their grain for the market. 

Mr. Harwood was bom in Union township, June 18, 1864, and is a son 
of Jeremiah Dale and Jane (Chapman) Harwood. The father, who was 




K. L. MAKWOOL) 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 165 

born January 29, 1832, was a farmer and a pioneer and died March 3, 
1909. The mother of our subject was born August 29, 1839, and departed 
this life April 11, 1886. In their family were six children: Mary, who 
married Samuel Adcock; Carrie, now Mrs. George Melborne; Eliza; 
George; James, deceased; and Robert Lincoln. 

Educated in the public schools and reared upon the home farm, Robert 
Lincoln Harwood early became thoroughly familiar with the duties to 
which he has devoted his life. He has never married and at present is 
renting a large farm, from which he is securing substantial returns. He 
has to some extent engaged in buying and selling live stock, but it is as a 
general farmer and not in any special line that he has attained his present 
standing. For many years he has been a member of the Methodist church, 
whose teachings he recognizes as a fair interpretation of holy writ. He 
is interested in political affairs and the principles which he supports are 
those of the republican party. Although not an aspirant for office of any 
kind, he is now serving as township trustee to the general satisfaction of 
the people of the township. He is a man of earnest convictions and in all 
points of business or conduct where there is reason to doubt, he aims to 
select that side which is just and true. 



FRED M. HARMAN. 



Fred M. Hamxan, actively engaged in truck farming and in dairying, 
is finding that industry constitutes the key that unlocks the portals of suc- 
cess, for in his chosen field of labor he is meeting with good results. He 
was bom in Davis county, Indiana, July 17, 1875, his parents being Joseph 
H. and Keziah (Allen) Harman, the former a native of Ohio and the lat- 
ter of the Hoosier state. In the year 1871 Joseph H. Harman came to 
Indiana, establishing his home at Odon, Davis county, where he followed 
blacksmithing for eight years. Thinking to find agricultural pursuits more 
congenial and profitable, however, he turned his attention to farming, rent- 
ing a tract of land which he cultivated for about three years. On the ex- 
piration of that period he bought two acres of land and built a blacksmith 
shop, resuming work at his trade, in which he continued until his death, 
passing away in May, 1905. His widow is still living, her home being now 
in Odon. 

Fred M. Harman was with his parents until twenty-five years of age, 
and his youthful days were devoted to the acquirement of an education 
in the public schools, to the pleasures of the playground and to the per- 
formance of such duties as parental authority assigned him. He made ar- 
rangements for having a home of his own in his marriage on the 19th of 
March, 1901, to Miss Catherine Kimbel, a daughter of E>aniel and Cath- 
erine (Smith) Kimbel, both of whom were natives of this state. At the 



166 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

time of his marriage Mr. Harman purchased fourteen acres of improved 
land and turned his attention to truck farming, which he followed for two 
and a half years. He then removed to Evansville, where he accepted a posi- 
tion in a grocery store, but after a short time entered the street car service 
as motorman and devoted three and a half years to that work. Subse- 
quently he removed to Center township and invested in twenty-four acres 
of improved land, since which time he has been engaged in raising garden 
products and in dairying. Both branches of his business are proving re- 
munerative. He cultivates vegetables of large size and fine quality, for 
which he finds a ready sale on the market. His dairy products are also of 
equal excellence and the most sanitary conditions prevail in the dairy. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Harman has been born one child, Daniel J., now 
eight years of age. Mrs. Harman is a member of the German Lutheran 
church. Politically Mr. Harman is a republican, exercising his right of 
franchise in support of the men and measures of the party, but never 
seeking office as a reward for party fealty. He is a young man, ambitious 
and energetic, and by the improvement of his time, talents and opportunities 
he is working his way steadily upward. 



SIMON V. LEVI. 



To say of Simon V. Levi that he has risen by his own efforts to rank among 
the foremost merchants of southwestern Indiana would seem trite to those 
familiar with his life record, yet it is but just to say in a history that will 
descend to future generations that his record is such as many a man might 
be proud to possess, for his advancement is attributable to his own exer- 
tions and at all time he has followed methods that will bear close investiga- 
tion and scrutiny. Moreover, in the development of his business he has 
also contributed to the commercial progress and prosperity of the cities in 
which he operates, for he is conducting department stores in both Evans- 
ville and Oakland City. 

Mr. Levi was born in Harrison county, Indiana, in 1858, play, work 
and study occupying his attention during his youthful days. He supple- 
mented a district school course by a normal course, pursued at Paoli, In- 
diana, and when his education was completed he began teaching in the 
country schools, following the profession for five years. He believed that 
broader opportunity was offered, however, in mercantile fields, and in 1883 
went to Oakland City, Indiana, where he opened a department store, which 
he is still conducting. It is today the largest establishment of the kind 
in Gibson county. Several years ago he came to Evansville. After de- 
liberate and thoughtful consideration he found the section of the city 
where a business such as he proposed to establish was most needed. He 
decided on his present location at Nos. 505-507-509 Fulton avenue, secuc- 
ing the large three-story building erected by William Heilman for a whole- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 167 

sale house. Stocking it with a large line of goods, he is now conducting 
what really deserves to be called a department store, for he has here thir- 
teen complete departments and is handling an extensive Hne, meeting every 
demand of his customers. Progressive methods have been instituted and 
Mr. Levi has ever made a close study of the trade and of popular demand. 
He is therefore able to supply his customers with what they desire, and 
he handles the latest goods sent out by the different manufacturers. 

In 1889 Mr. Levi was united in marriage to Miss Eva Baker, of Boon- 
ville, Indiana, and they have three children, two daughters and a son. The 
family hold membership in Trinity Methodist Episcopal church and in the 
work of the church Mr. Levi takes an active part, doing everything in his 
power to promote the social, intellectual and moral progress of the com- 
munity. In this regard, as in the conduct of his private business, his ideas 
and his efforts are practical and resultant. He is a man of marked force 
of character, who accomplishes what he undertakes, laboring persistently 
and energetically for honorable success whether for the benefit of him- 
self or for the community at large. 



ANTHONY J. KLEIN. 



Inflexible as the laws of nature is the rule which governs honorable 
success. It comes as the direct and logical result of earnest effort, intelli- 
gently directed, and the life history of Anthony J. Klein is another proof 
of this fact. He was bom in Germany, July 23, 1855, a son of Anthony 
and Josephine (Hoffman) Klein. The father was a carpet weaver by 
trade and about 1867 sailed with his family for the new world, his son An- 
thony being at that time twelve years of age. Ere the period of his 
minority was passed he entered business circles as an employe in the fac- 
tory of Anthony Reis, a tanner of Evansville, in whose service he was pro- 
moted through ability and fidelity until he reached the responsible position 
of bookkeeper. Ambitious, however, to engage in business on his own 
account that his labors should more directly benefit himself, he organized 
and established the Southwestern Broom Company, of which he was presi- 
dent. In this he instituted a productive industry that is still controlled by 
his family and which from the beginning proved a source of gratifying 
profit, owing to its continuous growth and substantial development. Mr. 
Klein was also an active member of the firm of Rosenberger & Klein, 
wholesale and retail grocers, and, moreover, was an active factor in the 
management and successful control of the Certain Cure Company, manu- 
facturers of proprietary medicines. Turning his attention to financial in- 
terests, he became one of the organizers and also a member of the board 
of directors of the City National Bank, and his opinions formed a guiding, 
factor in the institution throughout his remaining days. He was also a 



168 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

stockholder in several other banks of Evansville and indelibly impressed 
his name on the business history of the city and the substantial development 
of Evansville resulting therefrom. 

Mr. Klein was married in this city May 23, 1881, to Miss Mary New- 
haus, a daughter of Henry Newhaus, a prominent pioneer resident here. 
They became parents of four children : Alfred A., a well known business 
man of Evansville; Mrs. Charles Bartholomay, of Fort Wayne, Indiana; 
and Mary A. and Lillian, at home. The children all attended the schools 
of Evansville and the son was also a pupil in Notre Dame University. 

Mr. Klein gave his political allegiance to the democratic party but 
neither sought nor desired office. He belonged to the Knights of Colum- 
bus and was a charitable man, who understood "the joy of generous giving." 
He was devoted to the welfare of his family and erected for their comfort 
a beautiful residence on Wabash avenue, where his widow and children 
now reside. He passed away May 30, 1903, and in his demise Evansville 
mourned a citizen whose worth was widely acknowledged and whose ex- 
ample is well worthy of emulation. 



HARRY H. SCHU. 



Carefully formulated plans executed with dispatch and decision, sound 
business judgment and the recognition and utilization of opportunity, have 
brought Harry H. Schu to a leading place in the ranks of furniture manu- 
facturers in Evansville. He is now secretary-treasurer of the Crescent 
Furniture Company, president of the United States Furniture Company, 
president of the Star Furniture Company and secretary of the Furniture 
Exposition, which are among the most important manufacturing enter- 
prises of the city. He is also connected with other business enterprises 
and his labors are a valuable element in promoting progress along indus- 
trial and commercial lines. 

Evansville numbers him among her native sons, his birth having oc- 
curred in this city, December 4, 1866. His parents are Anthony J. and 
Christina Schu. The former, bom in Dansville, New York, on the 27th 
of February, 1836, came to Evansville in May, 1844, when a young lad 
of eight years, at which time the now flourishing and growing city was but 
a small town. In the early years of his manhood he engaged in the retail 
grocery business here and in 1859 became a lumber inspector. He was 
closely, actively and honorably associated with the business interests of 
the city until 1893, when he retired from active life to enjoy the rest to 
which his former labor well entitled him. He was married in this city, on 
the 7th of January, 1864, to Miss Christina Koehne and imto them were 
bom five children. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 169 

This number included Harry H. Schu, who was educated in the Catho- 
lic parochial schools until he reached the age of thirteen years. He later 
spent three years in the public schools and one year as a student in the 
Wright & Rank Business College and, thus trained for the duties of com- 
mercial life, he accepted the position of assistant bookkeeper with the 
Mechanics Furniture Company, remaining in that connection for a year. 
He then went to Joseph F. Reitz, a wholesale and retail furniture dealer, 
having charge of the office for five years. This period served to demonstrate 
his business abihty, his initiative spirit and his unfaltering enterprise. 
In 1889 Mr. Schu was one of the organizers of the Crescent Furniture 
Company, of which he became treasurer and general manager, and in 1900 
he was also elected secretary. There is no larger furniture factory in the 
city and none has a larger output. In the opening year the sales amounted 
to fifty thousand dollars and the growth of the trade is indicated by the 
fact that the sales have now reached three hundred and fifty thousand 
dollars. They manufacture a general line of dining-room furniture, side- 
boards, buffets, china cabinets and bookcases and the office and factory 
are located on First avenue, from Franklin to Michigan streets. Francis 
J. Reitz is president of the company and H. H. Schu is the other execu- 
tive officer. 

The business ability which Mr. Schu has displayed has caused his aid 
and cooperation to be sought in other fields which have profited by his 
sound judgment and business discernment. In 1901 he aided in organizing 
and was elected to the presidency of the United States Furniture Com- 
pany, manufacturers of mantel, upright folding beds and davenports, with 
office and factory at the junction of the Belt Railway and First avenue. 
His associate officers are Edward Kiechle, treasurer; Nestor Brentano, 
secretary; and Clemens A. Schu, manager. In 1907 he was elected to the 
presidency of the Star Furniture Company, wholesale dealers in chairs 
and furniture, located at Nos. 23 and 25, Lower Water street. The other 
officers of the company are L. C. Schweizer, vice president, and H. J. 
Sabel, secretary and treasurer. All three enterprises are a success and are 
among the important industrial and commercial interests of the city. Mr. 
H. H. Schu possesses excellent executive ability and powers of admin- 
istration and his capable management and keen insight have been impor- 
tant factors in advancing the interests of the enterprises with which he is 
connected. 

On the 4th of August, 1891, Mr. H. H. Schu was united in marriage 
in Evansville to Miss Mary Behme, by whom he has two children, Elmer 
and Jerome, who are eighteen and fourteen years of age respectively. His 
political endorsement is given to the democratic party and in religious faith 
he is a Roman Catholic, being a communicant of the Church of the As- 
sumption. He is secretary of the Parochial Councilors and is identified 
with several fraternal organizations, including the Knights of Columbus, 



170 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

the Red Men, the Travelers Protective Association and St. Michael's 
Benevolent Society. In a history of the men of Evansville whose busi- 
ness enterprise has brought them to a foremost position in commercial 
and trade circles, Mr. Schu well deserves mention. Thoroughness and 
close application have characterized his work from the outset of his career 
and at the same time he has manifested a public-spirited citizenship nor 
found necessity for a dividing line between religious principles and busi- 
ness relations. 



BENJAMIN BOSSE. 

Some men are born with business talent; others acquire it after years 
of struggle, leading through devious paths that finally conduct to victory. 
In the instance of Benjamin Bosse, whose name stands at the head of this 
review, a talent for business affairs very early became apparent and he 
has accomplished within comparatively a few years a greater work than 
is attained in a long life of activity by many men of good judgment and 
large business qualifications. Mr. Bosse was the prime mover in bringing 
about a consolidation of interests at Evansville, July 28, 1910, by which 
has been launched the largest furniture manufacturing company in the 
world, with a paid in capital of six hundred thousand dollars and a capa- 
city at four factories of producing an output amounting in value to more 
than one million dollars yearly. It is estimated that the payroll of the com- 
pany will amount to two hundred and fifty thousand dollars per year. The 
operations of this great organization will extend to all parts of this coun- 
try and to foreign countries. Of this great combination Mr. Bosse is 
president, A. F. Karges is vice president, C. M. Frisse is secretary and 
Edward Ploeger is treasurer. 

Benjamin Bosse is a native of Indiana, born on a farm in Scott town- 
ship, this county, November i, 1874. He is the son of Henry and Caroline 
(Schleusker) Bosse, both natives of Germany, who emigrated to America — 
a land of opportunity for many thousands of the sturdy Teutonic race who 
have found contentment and fortune. Henry Bosse settled on a farm and 
became one of the leading agriculturists in his part of the county. He was 
industrious, honest and energetic and a practical exemplification in his own 
family of the best characteristics handed down from a long line of worthy 
ancestry. An ardent advocate of repubHcan institutions, he always took 
an active part in local political aflfairs. He departed this life August 15, 
1908, mourned by his family and a wide circle of friends who will always 
regard his memory with reverence and esteem. Mrs. Bosse survives her 
husband and makes her home in Evansville. To the couple the patriarchal 
number of twelve children were born, eight of whom are now living. They 
were as follows: William; Louise, deceased; Mary, deceased; Frederick, 
deceased; John; Henry; Louis; Benjamin; George; Ella; August, de- 
ceased; and Amelia. 




BENJAMIN BOSSE 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 173 

Benjamin Bosse lived upon his father's farm until he was fourteen 
years of age. He attended the parochial schools during the winter and 
assisted in farm work in the spring and summer, thus laying a foundation 
in habits of industry and willingness to bear his share of the burdens of a 
large family, which has proven of the greatest benefit in later years. At 
the age of fourteen he came to Evansville and secured employment in the 
grocery business at ten dollars per month and board. He felt the need of 
more education than the parochial school afforded and by careful saving 
he accumulated enough money to pay for tuition at a business college, 
from which he graduated at the age of seventeen years. After leaving 
the college he was identified with a wholesale grocery house for two years. 
Being of an independent turn of mind, he was not contented to remain long 
upon a salary and at the early age of nineteen he decided to set up in 
business for himself. For him to resolve was to act, and he embarked in 
the retail grocery business, which he conducted for six years with the 
marked success that has characterized all his ventures. Seeing a wider 
field in the furniture business, he sold out his grocery and assisted in or- 
ganizing the Globe Furniture Company, of which he became general man- 
ager, secretary and treasurer. This was in 1899 and he has ever since 
been intimately identified with an industry whose growth has been one of 
the marvels of recent years. 

The activities of Mr. Bosse have by no means been confined to one line 
of business or to one organization. His energy has sought expression in 
many directions and the impress of his individuality is to be witnessed in 
many quarters. He has been president of the Bosse Furniture Company, 
of the Metal Furniture Company and the World Furniture Company. 
Since January i, 1903, he has filled the office of president of the West 
Side Bank. He was one of the organizers of the Karges Wagon Com- 
pany, of which he is a director, and as stockholder in a number of growing 
manufacturing concerns his advice and assistance have been eagerly sought. 
He was the originator of the plan which led to the organization of a com- 
pany to erect the Furniture Exchange building, where all the show rooms 
of the manufacturers could be brought together under one roof. He is a 
member of the board of directors and has been treasurer since the organi- 
zation of the company. He is also a member of the Evansville Business 
Men's Association, of which he is now president, the Evansville Manufac- 
turers' Association and vice president of the Traffic Bureau of this city. 
It would be difficult to name any important movement for the upbuilding 
of the city during the last ten years with which Mr. Bosse has not been 
actively identified. He is regarded by associates and friends as one of the 
ablest advisers in matters pertaining to general business interests of Evans- 
ville and the wide region contributory to its manufacturing and distrib- 
uting instrumentalities. In politics Mr. Bosse adheres to the democratic 
party. He has never sought political honors but has always extended an 
assisting hand to friends whose ambition lay in that direction. He served 



174 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

with general acceptance under Mayor Boehne as president of the board of 
public safety and succeeded in accomplishing changes in the administration 
of the board which have been of permanent benefit to the city. 

On the 2d of September, 1896, Mr. Bosse was united in marriage to 
Miss Anna Riechman, daughter of the late Frederick Riechman, of this 
city. Mrs. Bosse is a lady of refinement and culture and has proven a 
true helpmeet to her husband. She presides over a beautiful home where 
hospitality abounds and true worth always receives recognition. Mr. and 
Mrs. Bosse are members of the German Evangelical Lutheran church, a 
belief in which they were both reared. He is a member of the general 
board of supervision of the Lutheran church of the United States, this 
board having supervision of all the properties belonging to the church. It 
is one of the important factors in the organization in America. 

Although scarcely yet at the doorway which opens to middle life, Mr. 
Bosse has accomplished a great deal of work which will stand as an en- 
during monument to his name. Inheriting from his father an honesty and 
integrity that has never been questioned, he is one of the fortunate men of 
large affairs who has made few mistakes and has had the foresight and 
judgment to avoid many of the pitfalls into which too many men, starting 
with high ambitions in the business world, have fallen. It is with true 
pride that we present this record of one who has won his way, starting as 
a simple country lad and attaining a place among the acknowledged leaders 
in honorable lines of business in Evansville. 



HENRY MATHER SWEETSER. 

Success and disaster both played a part in shaping the life history of 
Henry Mather Sweetser but through all there remained in him strong traits 
' of character which did not unduly succumb to either influence. He recog- 
nized the fact that character building is the most essential thing in the world, 
and day by day he wrote in his life record an account that is worthy the 
reading. He possessed courage to overcome obstacles, resolution to con- 
tinue in a course which he believed to be right, and thus his name ever re- 
mained an honored one in the community where he long made his home. 

His birth occurred in Hartford, Connecticut, July 12, 1840. He was a 
son of Henry P. Sweetser, a native of Boston, Massachusetts, who in 1849 
went to California, where he located valuable mining properties. He then 
returned to the east to secure machinery with which to operate his mines but 
became lost en route and died. The mother was a Mather of the Cotton 
Mather family, which possessed a coat of arms that dated back to 1602. 

Henry Mather Sweetser was educated in the east. He was only nine 
years of age when left an orphan and was later reared by his grandmother. 
He was afterward employed upon the farm of an uncle through the summer 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 175 

months, with the privilege of attending school in the winter seasons. During 
one of his vacations he was asked by Mr. Alfred to accompany him to 
Evansville on a business trip and to see the country. While here he met 
Willard Carpenter, who took a fancy to the lad and asked him to remain and 
enter his store, for Mr. Carpenter was at that time the senior partner in a 
general mercantile enterprise of this city. When the firm of Willard Car- 
penter & Company was succeeded by the Jewell-Newberry Company, whole- 
sale dealers in dry goods. Mr. Sweetser went upon the road as traveling 
representative for that house, and as a salesman showed remarkable business 
talent. At length he left that company to become a salesman for the Mackey- 
Archer Company, which later became the Mackey-Nisbet Dry Goods 
Company. 

Ambitious to engage in business on his own account, he carefully saved 
his earnings until his economical expenditure enabled him, in 1862, to estab- 
lish the first wholesale notion house in Evansville. In this new enterprise he 
was wonderfully successful and built a large fortune. For years the firm of 
Sweetser, Caldwell & Company, at No. 124 Upper First street, was the larg- 
est wholesale notion house in the city. His field of success, however, was not 
limited to this line. He became a large stockholder in the Evansville, Cairo 
& Paducah Steamboat Company and later became president of the Tennessee 
Rivet Packet Company. Because of his large river interests he was called 
Commodore Sweetser and was so spoken of by friends until his death. The 
building of the railroads was followed by a depression in the steamboat busi- 
ness, causing heavy losses to Mr. Sweetser, followed by the failure of the 
Sweetser-Caldwell firm. With the courage and determination which always 
characterized him, however, Mr. Sweetser established a brokerage business 
in 1894, with an office on upper Third street, near Main. In this he again 
prospered, regaining much of the fortune he had lost. 

In 1863 Mr. Sweetser was married to Miss Mary Caldwell, a daughter 
of Joseph M. Caldwell, a merchant of Evansville, who was one of the early 
settlers of this city and was a brother of William Caldwell, who was a grocer 
of Evansville. Mr. Caldwell always had a great fondness for boys and 
assisted many in gaining a start. He married Miss Du Puy and they had 
the Du Puy coat of arms from one of the best old French families. Her 
father was Benjamin Franklin Du Puy, a very early settler of this part of 
the state. 

It was a short time before his marriage that Mr. Sweetser responded to 
the country's call for troops and enlisted for service in the Civil war as a 
member of the Twenty-fifth Indiana Infantry, with which he served with dis- 
tinction. He was prominent in Masonry, belonging to Reed Lodge, No. 316, 
F. & A. M. ; Evansville Chapter, No. 12, R. A. M. ; and La Vallette Com- 
mandery, No. 15, K. T. The death of Mr. Sweetser occurred January 31, 
1910. Coming to Evansville when a lad, he was identified with its business 
interests for over a half century, and throughout that period maintained an 
honored name and enjoyed the friendly regard of those with whom he was 



176 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

associated. He brought with him to the middle west the thrift and enter- 
prise characteristic of New England. His fellow townsmen soon recognized 
his trustworthy qualities, and he left the impress of his individuality upon 
the history of the city which for more than a half century remained his 
home. 



CHARLES J. HORNBY. 

Charles J. Hornby has passed the Psalmist's span of three score years 
and ten and his entire life has been spent in Vanderburg county. He was 
born in Scott township, December 14, 1837, and through the intervening 
period of seventy-three years he has been an interested and observing 
w;itness of the progress that has been made in developing the county along 
modern lines of advancement and improvement. His memory forms a 
connecting Hnk between the primitive past and the progressive present and 
he relates many interesting incidents of pioneer days. 

His parents were Henry F. and Caroline (Mansel) Hornby, both of 
whom were natives of England, whence they came to 'Atnerica in child- 
hood days with their parents. After arriving at man's estate Henry F. 
Hornby purchased land and began farming on his own account. The tract 
which he owned was originally covered with timber. This he cleared away 
and, preparing the fields for the plow, at length gathered good harvests 
as a reward for his industry and untiring labor. He also engaged exten- 
sively and successfully in land speculation and at one time owned over 
a thousand acres. He continued actively in farming up to the time of his 
death, which occurred in March, 1867, his wife surviving until 1868. 

The youthful days of Charles J. Hornby were spent upon the home 
farm in the usual manner of boys of that period. There were difficulties 
and hardships to be borne that are unknown at the present time but there 
were also pleasures to be enjoyed, with which the young people of the 
present day are unfamiliar. He continued on the old homestead until 
twenty years of age, when his father gave him and his brother each one 
hundred and forty acres of land. He at once began to cultivate the farm, 
has erected thereon all of the buildings seen upon the place and in course 
of years has developed a productive and valuable property. As he pros- 
pered in his undertakings he extended the boundaries of his place until he 
is now the owner of two hundred and thirty-seven acres of fine land. 

On the 2ist of November, 1867, Mr. Hornby was united in marriage 
to Miss Sarah A. Minney, a daughter of George and Alice (Pauley) Min- 
ney, English people, who on coming from their native country settled in, 
Vanderburg county. Here the father established a brickyard, which he 
conducted for a number of years, when he purchased a farm, continuing 
its cultivation until the time of his death in 1885. Mr. and Mrs. Hornby 





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CHARLES J. HOKXKY 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 179 

became the parents of five children : Mrs. Nellie McCutcheon, now living 
in Harrisburg, Illinois; George Frederick, who was born November 20, 
1871, and died December 23, 1874; Mrs. Minney McCutcheon; Clara, 
who is a school teacher and lives at home ; and Ernest R., who is married 
and lives in this township. The wife and mother passed away September 
9, 1894, and her death was the occasion of deep regret to many who had 
known her and who recognized her many good and womanly qualities. 

The Hornby family are well known in Center township and other parts 
of Vanderburg county and enjoy the high regard of those with whom they 
have been associated. Since attaining his majority, ;Mr. Hornby has 
given his political support to the republican party and has ever kept well 
informed on the questions and issues of the day. His life has ever been 
upright and honorable and has gained him the high regard of all with 
whom business or social relations have brought him in contact. While a 
resident of Vanderburg county many changes have occurred. Its forests 
have been cut down and the land converted into fine farms. Towns and 
cities have sprung up containing important manufacturing and industrial 
interests and progress along all lines has been conserved, making this one 
of the leading counties of the commonwealth. Mr. Hornby has ever cast 
the weight of his influence on the side of improvement and has stood for 
all that is for the best for the individual and the community. 



HENRY WIMBERG. 



Henry Wimberg, whose business ability has advanced him from a humble 
position in industrial circles to a place among the successful manufacturers 
of Vanderburg county, is now president of the Evansville Brewing Associa- 
tion. As the surname indicates, he comes of German lineage. His parents 
were George and Helen Wimberg, natives of Germany, and in the city of 
Oldenburg Henry Wimberg was born on the 31st of December, 1851. In 
his youthful days his time was largely given to the acquirement of an educa- 
tion in the Catholic schools until he reached the age of fourteen years, when 
he put aside his text-books and devoted the three succeeding years to work 
with his father, who owned a tavern. In the meantime reports reached him 
concerning America, for many of his fellow countrymen had crossed the 
Atlantic and had found opportunities for advancement and progress, and a 
spirit of laudable ambition prompted Henry Wimberg to attempt the same. 
At the age of seventeen, therefore, he made his way to the new world and 
without pausing on the Atlantic seaboard, came at once to Evansville, where 
he began learning the moulder's trade in the C. & H. Lindenschmidt foundry, 
where he continued for five years. That period brought him capital sufficient 
to enable him to engage in the saloon business, in which he continued for 
twelve years. He next undertook the teaming and transfer business, with 



180 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

which he is still connected, finding in it a good source of revenue. His identi- 
fication with the Evansville Brewing Company dates from 1891, in which year 
he was elected its president. Three years later this was consolidated with 
the John Hartmetz & Son Brewing Company and the Fulton Avenue 
Brewery under the name of the Evansville Brewing Association, which is 
today in control of one of the most extensive plants of this character in 
Southwestern Indiana. Their capacity is about twenty thousand barrels 
annually and they employ two hundred and fifty people. The plant is 
splendidly equipped for the conduct of the business along the most sanitary 
lines, and the matter of quality is never sacrificed to quantity. It is the 
excellence of the product that has insured a ready sale on the market making 
the trade a large and growing one. 

In September, 1875, in Evansville, Mr. Wimberg was united in marriage 
to Miss Elizabeth Emge, and unto them have been born four children: 
Catharine, the wife of Wm. T. Drury, of Morganfield, Kentucky ; Henry A., 
aged thirty-three years, general manager of the branch brewery of the 
Evansville Brewing Association; John G., aged thirty-one years, who is 
manager of Memphis, Tennessee, branch of the same concern; and Louis W., 
aged nineteen years, bookkeeper of the Evansville Brewing Association. 

In his fraternal relations Mr. Wimberg is an Elk. He belongs to the 
Catholic church and gives his political allegiance to the democratic party. 
He is likewise a member of the Country and Crescent Clubs and of all of 
the diflferent German societies of Evansville, and is prominent and popular 
among the German-American people of the city. He has never had occasion 
to regret his determination to come to the United States, for he has here 
found the business opportunities which he sought and in their utilization has 
won success, the hope of which brought him to the new world. 



AUGUST JAMES SCHLAEPFER. 

The business interests of Evansville should occupy a prominent place 
in any work relating to Vanderburg county, for it is to these interests largely 
that the city and county owe their present creditable standing. In the list 
of important business concerns is that presided over by August J. Schlaepfer, 
a well known druggist, who was born in Evansville, July 12, 1867, and has 
been identified with this city ever since he entered his active career. On the 
paternal line he comes of Swiss stock. His father, Henry J. Schlaepfer was 
born in Switzerland, in 1837, and came to America with his parents at ten 
years of age. He established himself in the drug business at Evansville in 
1861, continuing until 1903, when he was called away. The mother, Emma 
Smith before her marriage, was born in this country of English parentage 
and departed this life two years before her husband, in 1901. Mr. Schlaepfer, 
Sr., was a man of fine business capacity and for more than forty years was 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 181 

connected with the mercantile life of a community where he was known as 
one of its stanchest citizens. He was greatly beloved by those with whom he 
associated and his death brought a deep sense of personal Ijereavement to a 
wide circle of friends and acquaintances. 

The subject of this review grew up under the favoring influences of a 
happy home and was educated in the public schools of Evansville, graduating 
from the high school in 1885. He became a student of the Philadelphia Col- 
lege of Pharmacy, from which he was graduated with the degree of Ph. G. in 
1888. Returning home, he assisted his father until the death of the latter, 
when he succeeded to the business of which his father had been for many 
years the head. Mr. Schlaepfer is in charge of a large and well appointed 
drug store at the corner of Main and Second streets, which has long been 
one of the established institutions of the city and is favorably known not 
only in Evansville but throughout a wide region in southern Indiana. Patrons 
of this establishment feel assured that they will receive what they call for 
and that it will be the best of the kind that can be found in the market. It 
is this reputation for fair dealing that accounts for the prosperity of a house 
founded nearly fifty years ago, and which is more flourishing today than 
at any previous time in its history. 

Mr. Schlaepfer is socially connected with the Benevolent and Protective 
Order of Elks and with the Crescent and Country Clubs. He has never taken 
any active part in politics, as his attention is mainly occupied with the busi- 
ness to which he devotes the best energies of his Hfe. 



JOHN E. IGLEHART. 



Devoting his life to a profession wherein advancement depends entirely 
upon individual merit, John E. Iglehart has gained distinction as one of the 
eminent members of the Evansville bar. He was born on the loth of Au- 
gust, 1848, in Warrick county, Indiana, a son of Asa and Ann (Cowle) 
Iglehart. Judge Asa Iglehart was recognized as one of the leaders of the 
Indiana bar. The Igleharts were an old country family in Prince George 
county, Maryland, when Levi Iglehart, the grandfather of John E. Iglehart, 
came west about a hundred years ago. He settled first in Ohio county, 
Kentucky, and afterward removed to Warrick county, Indiana, where he 
reared his family and where throughout the remainder of his life he was 
recognized as one of the leading and influential men of the country, hon- 
ored with various public offices. He held the office of county commissioner 
for many years, in early life was a magistrate and later a "lay judge" in the 
circuit or probate court. 

John E. Iglehart supplemented his preliminary education acquired in 
the public schools by study in Asbury, now De Pauw, University at Green- 
castle, Indiana, where he was graduated in 1868. In 1871 his alma mater 



182 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

conferred upon him the Master of Arts degree. Having qualified for the 
bar by a thorough course in Asbury, he at once entered upon practice and 
for forty-two years has devoted his attention to the work of the legal pro- 
fession, making his home in Evans ville since 1849. Prompted by laudable 
ambition, he applied himself earnestly to the mastery of the legal problems 
that came before him and soon gained recognition as a strong and forceful 
representative before the bar. His success in a professional way affords 
the best evidence of his capabilities in this line. He has always been a 
strong advocate with the jury and concise in his appeals before the court. 
He possesses a natural discrimination as to legal ethics and he is so thor- 
oughly well read in the minutiae of the law that he is able to base his argu- 
ments upon a thorough knowledge of and familiarity with precedents and 
to present a case upon its merits, never failing to recognize the main point 
at issue and never neglecting to give a thorough preparation. His pleas 
have been characterized by a terse and decisive logic and a lucid presenta- 
tion, rather than by flights of oratory, and his power is the greater before 
court or jury from the fact that it is recognized that his aim is ever to 
secure justice and not to enshrould the cause in a sentimental garb or illu- 
sion which will thwart the principles of right and equity involved. 

On the 4th of November, 1874, in Evansville, Mr. Iglehart was mar- 
ried to Miss Lockie W. Holt, a daughter of Robert and Ann Holt. Her 
ancestors in the paternal line lived in Kentucky and Virginia and were 
descended from the family of that name well known in American and Eng- 
lish history. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Iglehart have been born two sons and 
two daughters : Eugene H., who married Emily Powers ; Ann, the wife of 
John Ingle ; Lockie H., the wife of Charles A. Humphry ; and Joseph H. 

Mr. Iglehart holds membership in the Trinity Methodist Episcopal 
church and in all matters of public moment he is deeply interested. For 
three years, from 1887 until 1890, he was a trustee of the Evansville public 
schools but has never sought nor desired official prominence or political 
honors. His influence has been all the more potent perhaps from the fact 
that it is moral rather than political and is wielded for the public good 
rather than for personal ends. He stands for that which is just and pro- 
gressive and as man and citizen no one in Evansville is held in higher regard. 



HENRY E. DREIER. 



For a period of ten years Henry E. Dreier has filled the office of county 
assessor and his official record is one over which there falls no shadow of 
wrong or suspicion of evil. Not only is he a capable and efficient public 
officer, but is also well known because of his force and enterprise in busi- 
ness circles and his activity in affairs which directly concern the interests 
of society and the community at large. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 183 

He was born in Evans ville, February 4, 1867, his parents being Henry 
and Mary Dreier. His father was a native of Lippe-Detmold, Germany, 
born August 2, 1842. Crossing the Atlantic to America in his youthful 
days, he became a resident of Mount Vernon, Indiana, in 1859, and there 
engaged in the wagon-making trade in connection with his uncle. But 
after two years devoted to industrial pursuits he put aside business cares 
as his patriotic spirit was aroused by the attempt of the south to overthrow 
the Union. In 1861 he joined the army, becoming a member of the One 
Hundred and Sixty-seventh Indiana Cavalry, with which he served con- 
tinuously until honorably discharged at the close of the war in 1865. Dur- 
ing that period he had participated in some hotly contested engagements 
and had met the usual experiences of military life. At the end of the war 
he came to Evansville, where he engaged in the wagon-making business 
until 1869. He then entered the employ of C. Decker & Sons, for whom 
he worked as a wagon-maker for fifteen years, at the end of which time 
he turned his attention to general agricultural pursuits, locating in Perry 
township. Vanderburg county. He was there successfully engaged in 
farming until 1908, when with the comfortable competence which he had 
acquired through his persistent labors he retired to private life. 

Henry E. Dreier was a pupil in the public schools of Evansville until 
twelve years of age, after which he attended the German Lutheran schools 
for a year. Subsequently his attention was given to the work of the fields 
and he was continuously identified with farming interests in Perry town- 
ship until 1900, when his fellow townsmen elected him to the office of 
county assessor, in which position he has since remained, his reelection 
constituting proof of his ability and fidelity in office. No word of criticism 
has ever been heard concerning his official career, and he has no opposi- 
tion save that which is occasioned by partisan loyalty. The value of his 
judgment in business affairs has been demonstrated in his connection with 
various important interests of the city and county. He is now the president 
of the West Side Insurance & Real Estate Company and in control of its 
interests displays keen sagacity and a spirit of unfaltering enterprise. He 
is likewise the president of the Forest Hill Real Estate Company and the 
vice president of the Farmers & Citizens Bank. 

Nor are Mr. Dreier's activities confined to those interests which are 
a source of renumeration, for he is a director of the Anti-Tuberculosis 
Society and a director of the Associated Charities, connections which show 
that he is thinking out along the broadening lines of humane interests and 
individual obhgation. 

On the isth of August, 1899, Mr. Dreier was married in Evansville to 
Miss Anna Wunderlich and they have two children, Walter and Grace, 
aged eight and six years, now students of the public schools. Throughout 
his entire life Mr. Dreier has maintained his home in Evansville and in 
Vanderburg county, so that his life history is largely familiar to his fellow 



184 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

townsmen. The incumbent of a public office is constantly the target for 
criticism, if his acts do not measure up to the highest standard, and that 
Mr. Dreier is uniformly spoken of in terms of respect and admiration in- 
dicates that his course has ever been an honorable and straightforward one, 
not only in official but in business relations as well. He is concerned in 
those questions which are of vital significance to the age and is thinking 
out broadly along the lines which are of general interest. 



JOHN M. LAUGHLIN. 



A resident of Evansville from his boyhood days, John M. Laughlin as the 
years passed by, left the impress of his individuality upon the city through 
his business and social relations. He came with his mother and in his 
early youth undertook alone the solution of life's problems, necessity early 
forcing him to provide for his own support. He was first employed as a 
clerk in a store but could not be content with mediocrity, and gradually 
worked his way upward, proving his ability in his worth, fidelity, close ap- 
plication and unremitting industry. Gradually, therefore, promotion was 
accorded him until he became the head of a department in the store of 
Miller Brothers. He was thus associated for years with the business and 
contributed in no small measure to its success. He was considered an 
expert judge of silk and his knowledge thereof enabled him to so manage 
that department of the house that a large trade was enjoyed and satis- 
faction was at all times manifested by his patrons. 

At the time of the Civil war Mr. Laughlin put aside business cares to 
espouse the cause of the Union, enlisting in the Fourteenth Indiana Regi- 
ment, with which he served throughout the period of hostilities, taking a 
part in many hotly contested battles, and at all times proving his valor and 
loyalty by his fearless defense of the old flag. 

Following his return home, Mr. Laughlin was married in Evansville 
in 1867 to Mrs. Margaret Manning Fergus Byrne, who in early girlhood 
came to Evansville with her parents, both of whom died soon afterward 
of an epidemic. She was then adopted by Mr. and Mrs. Robert Fergus 
and reared as their own child. Her foster father was one of the pioneer 
residents of Evansville and was accorded rank with its substantial citi- 
zens, doing much to further the welfare and upbuilding of the community. 
His integrity and rectitude of character made him honored by all who 
knew him, and his Christian manhood constituted an example well worthy 
of emulation. His sympathetic nature made ready response to the need 
of the little girl who was left an orphan by the early death of her parents, 
and therefore into his home as his own child he received Margaret Man- 
ning. She was accorded exceptionally good educational privileges, at- 
tending St. Mary's of the Woods near Terre Haute, Indiana. On attain- 




JOHN M. LAUCiHLIX 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 187 

ing womanhood she gave her hand in marriage to J. P. Byrne, a native 
of Kerry, Ireland, who when twenty years of age came to the new world, 
establishing his home in Evansville. Here he engaged in general mer- 
chandising, conducting a store on Main street. He was one of the early 
merchants of this city who traded in New Orleans when all shipments were 
made by boat. Evansville numbered him among her progressive and pub- 
lic-spirited citizens, for he was interested in her welfare and gave aid to 
many projects for the public good. His religious faith was that of the 
Catholic church. In 1861 he married Margaret Manning Fergus, but three 
years later was called to his final rest, leaving two sons, Thomas and John, 
both of Evansville. In 1867 Mrs. Bryne became of the wife of John M. 
Laughlin, and unto them were born six children, all of whom are yet living : 
Mrs. Blanche Elliott, Mrs. Marie Thomas, Mrs. Margaret Wheatley, and 
Isabella; and Robert and James, both of whom are in St. Louis. 

For twenty years Mr. and Mrs. Laughlin traveled life's journey to- 
gether and were then separated by the death of the husband in 1887. He 
was truly a self-made man, who had been not only the architect, but the 
builder of his own fortune. Whatever he achieved and enjoyed was at- 
tributable to his own exertions, and his life record is an indication of 
what may be accomplished when earnest and faithful purpose constitute 
the motive power. Mrs. Laughlin has resided in Evansville from her early 
girlhood and is widely known here, having an extensive circle of warm 
friends. 



CHARLES M. FRISSE. 

Charles M. Frisse, one of the younger business men of Evansville, 
whose life record has already demonstrated the fact that he possesses busi- 
ness qualifications and laudable ambition whereby he has attained to the 
position of secretary of Globe-Bosse- World Furniture Company, was bom 
in this city, December 15, 1879, his parents being Fred and Elizabeth Frisse. 
His father was born in Germany near Liebstadt, on the 8th of August, 
1849, and was a young man of twenty years when he determined to cross 
the Atlantic and seek the opportunities of the new world. Accordingly in 
1869 he sailed for the United States and came at once to Evansville. 
Throughout his entire business life he was engaged in the manufacture 
of shoes, continuing in that field until his retirement in 1907. 

Reared in Evansville, Charles M. Frisse was a pupil in the parochial 
schools until fourteen years of age and afterward attended the public 
schools for one year and the Lockyear Business College for six months. 
He made his initial step in business circles as bookkeeper for H. Schminke, 
stove manufacturer, with whom he remained for ten months, after which 
he accepted a position in the accounting department of the Evansville & 
Richmond Railroad, there remaining for one year and four months. He 



188 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

then engaged with the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad Company in the 
accounting department, occupying that position for six years, when he be- 
came bookkeeper for the Globe Furniture Company, which he thus repre- 
sented for three and one-half years. During that period he gained con- 
siderable knowledge of the furniture trade and when he left that house 
it was to assume the duties of secretary and treasurer of the World Furni- 
ture Company, to which he was elected in 1907. This company was con- 
solidated with others August i, 1910, under the name of the Globe-Bosse- 
World Furniture Company. The business is one of thfe important pro- 
ductive industries of the city, the consolidated factories employing six 
hundred men in the manufacture of a general line of furniture. They are 
continually bringing out new and attractive styles, and in design, durability 
and finish their furniture is equal to that produced by any house and sold 
at a similar figure. The steps in the orderly progression of Mr. Frisse are 
easily discernible, showing that he has been faithful to the trust reposed 
in him and that his constantly broadening experience has made his services 
of greater effect and value. He is today regarded as one of the forceful 
factors in manufacturing lines in Evansville and his initiative spirit and 
firm purpose are elements that promise success in the future. 

Mr. Frisse is a member of the Knights of Columbus and the Elks lodge 
and also belongs to the National Union and is a communicant of the Catholic 
church. He has social qualities that render him popular with many friends 
and has a wide and favorable acquaintance in the city of his nativity. 



CHARLES WILLIAM LONG. 

Charles William Long is engaged in the cultivation of two hundred and 
thirty-seven acres of rich land in Union township, of which he owns eighty- 
seven acres. He is yet a young man and the success he has already achieved 
indicates that he will make further progress in the future. He was 
born in the township which is still his home on the 5th of May, 1877, * 
son of Elias and Dora (Hills) Long, who are likewise natives of Union 
township and representatives of old pioneer families of the county. The 
father was bom February 11, 1853, and the mother on the 13th of May, 
1849. They have spent their entire lives in this locality, Mr. Long always 
following farming as a means of support for his family. 

The youthful days of Charles W. Long were spent at the old home- 
stead, where he was trained to habits of industry, economy and integrity. 
Practical experience in the work of the fields well qualified him to take 
charge of a farm of his own, for from early life he assisted his father and 
in his youthful days alternated his time between the farm work and the 
attainment of an education in the public schools. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 189 

After reaching his majority he was married on Christmas day of 19CX5, 
to Miss Amy King, a daughter of James L. King, a veteran of the Civil 
war, who served for three years as a member of Company F, Sixty-first 
Indiana Volunteer Infantry. He was afterward prominent in public af- 
fairs of the community, serving as justice of the peace and also as county 
commissioner. His decisions in the former office were characterized by 
absolute fairness and impartiality and his duties as commissioner were 
also discharged with equal faithfulness. At the time of their marriage 
Mr. and Mrs. Long began their domestic life upon a farm and as the years 
have passed their home has been blessed by the presence of two sons and 
one daughter: James, born August 3, 1902; Floyd, born November 26, 
1904; and Grace Naomi, bom October 3, 1910. 

Both parents are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and their 
fidelity to its principles has made their lives of such value and worth to 
the community that they are numbered among the best citizens of Union 
township. Mr. Long votes with the democratic party and has been called 
to local offices, serving for the past two years as township assessor, while 
his incumbency in the office will continue for two years more. His atten- 
tion, however, is chiefly given to his farm work and in addition to the 
property which he owns, comprising eighty-seven acres of fine land, he 
also rents and cultivates one hundred and fifty acres. The large farm of 
two hundred and thirty-seven acres makes extensive demands upon his 
time and energies and the excellent appearance of his place indicates the busy 
life he leads. 



JOSEPH B. LINDENSCHMIDT. 

Joseph B. Lindenschmidt, although one of the younger business men of 
Evansville, his native city, has already attained a creditable place in manu- 
facturing circles, being secretary and treasurer of The Lindenschmidt Com- 
pany, iron and bolt manufacturers. 

He was bom on the 3d of April, 1880, and while spending his youthful 
days in the home of his parents, Henry and Mary Lindenschmidt, he pur- 
sued his education in the public schools, which he attended until 1893. Then 
at the age of thirteen he started out in life for himself and has since been 
connected with business interests. The enterprise of which he is now a 
representative was established in 1883 by Henry and Goswin Lindenschmidt 
at its present location under the firm name of H. & G. Lindenschmidt. Ten 
years later Joseph B. Lindenschmidt entered the employ of the house, making 
it his purpose to master the business in all of its departments. The papers 
of incorporation were taken out in 1905 under the name of The Linden- 
schmidt Company. Henry Lindenschmidt has now retired, while Goswin 
Lindenschmidt is deceased. 



190 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

This is a close corporation, the stock being owned by members of the 
family, Edward C. Lindenschmidt being now vice president. They manu- 
facture builders' iron work, structural iron work, iron fencing, fire escapes 
and stairways and do all kinds of blacksmithing and machine work. Their 
patronage is largely local, although they ship to some extent. The plant is 
operated to its full capacity, twelve workmen being employed. Their building 
is a one-story structure, sixty by seventy-five feet. They have made many 
outside fire escapes, also ornamental gates for cemeteries and public grounds 
and their trade is satisfactory and profitable. Firmness of purpose, recti- 
tude of intention and persistence in efifort are the stock in trade of self-made 
men and these qualities have constituted the foundation upon which Joseph 
B. Lindenschmidt has reached the plane of success. 



JOHN BROWNLEE. 



For forty-four years the name of John Brownlee has appeared upon the 
court records of southern Indiana and figures in connection with many of 
the most important cases that have been brought to trial in the state and 
federal courts. His success is evidenced in the large clientage accorded him 
and the high regard entertained for him by his fellow members of the bar. 
He was bom in Princeton, Indiana, August 23, 1847, a- son of John and Jane 
(Harrington) Brownlee. The father's birth occurred in Lexington, Ken- 
tucky, in 1793, and in 1816 he removed to Princeton, Indiana, where he and 
his father opened a dry-goods store, in which he continued until his death 
in May, 1855. He was one of the pioneeer merchants of southern Indiana 
and his enterprise was a feature in the business development of this part of 
the state. The business is now carried on by Charles Brownlee, making a 
period of ninety-four years in which the family have been engaged in the 
dry-goods trade in Princeton, and the old homestead in that city has been 
occupied by members of the family for seventy-six years, it being now the 
residence of Charles Brownlee. 

John Brownlee entered the public schools at the usual age, therein con- 
tinuing his studies to the age of fourteen, when he responded to the coun- 
try's call for troops, enlisting as a member of Company F, Fifty-eighth 
Indiana Infantry, with which he served for three years, participating in many 
of the hotly contested battles of the war, the long, hard marches and the 
strenuous campaigns which eventually crowned the Union arms with victory. 
He was one of the youngest among the Indiana soldiers at the front. The 
experiences of war, however, well equipped him for the duties of later life 
and John Brownlee returned to his home with an understanding of life, its 
purposes and responsibilities seldom held by a young man of his years. He 
attended a private school in Princeton for a year and then, in preparation for 
the bar, entered Albany Law School, at Albany, New York, from which he 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 191 

was graduated with the LL. B. degree in 1866. The same year he was ad- 
mitted to practice by the supreme court of New York. He entered upon his 
professional career at Mount Vernon, Indiana, here he continued in the 
private practice of law until 1870, when he was elected prosecuting attorney 
for a district comprising four counties. He filled that position for ten years 
and in the meantime removed to Evansville, where he began practicing. In 
1887 he was called to the office of city attorney and served until 1890. He 
has been very successful, being ever regarded as an able minister in the 
temple of justice; ever careful to conform his practice to a high standard of 
professional ethics. He has never sought to lead the court astray in a matter 
of fact or law, nor would he withhold from it a knowledge of any fact ap- 
pearing in the record. He has ever treated the court with a studied courtesy 
which is it due and has indulged in no malicious criticism because it arrived 
at a conclusion in the decision of the case different from that which he hoped 
to hear. He has given to his clients the service of great talent, unwearied 
industry and wide learning, yet he never forgets there are certain things due 
to the court, to his own self respect and above all to justice and the righteous 
administration of the law, which neither the zeal of an advocate nor the 
pleasure of success permits him to disregard. 

Mr. Brownlee was married in Mount Vernon, April 2, 1877, to Miss 
Mittie Templeton and they have three children: Mrs. J. H. Deacon, of 
Evansville; Dalmar T., twenty-six years of age, who is a mechanical en- 
gineer now acting as superintendent of an automobile factory in Indianapolis ; 
and Mrs. Jane Rash, a resident of Henderson, Kentucky. 

In his fraternal relations Mr. Brownlee is a Mason, a member of the 
Tribe of Ben Hur, of the Court of Honor and of the Grand Army of the 
Republic. His political allegiance is given to the democratic party. He was 
a faithful soldier of the Civil war and he has ever since marched in step 
with that great army of loyal American citizens who seek the best interests 
of the country, the upholding of good government and the maintenance of 
individual rights and privileges. 



ELI L. HART. 



Eli L. Hart, general agent at Evansville for the American Express 
Company, was bom in Calumet, Michigan, June 25, 1875, and is a son of 
James and Adelaide (Bourjet) Hart, both of whom were natives of Sorol, 
Canada, and of French ancestry. The father followed farming in his na- 
tive country but became a contractor in Calumet following his removal to 
Michigan. As the years passed he gained substantial success and was 
recognized, moreover, as a prominent citizen whose identification with 
public affairs was of value in promoting general progress. He died on the 
23d of February, 1907, at the age of seventy-five years, while his widow 
now lives with a married daughter in Duluth, Minnesota. 



192 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In his native city Eli L. Hart began his education as a public school 
student, and passed through consecutive grades until he entered the high 
school. He afterward matriculated in a commercial college, pursuing a gene- 
ral business course, and at the age of twenty years he entered the employ 
of the American Express Company as driver. Gradually his ability won 
him recognition and he was promoted to the successive positions of mes- 
senger, clerk and cashier at Duluth, Minnesota. His advancement came 
through his merit and his loyalty to duty. In 1903 he was appointed 
express agent for the company at Ashland, Wisconsin, where he re- 
mained for three years, and was then transferred to St. Paul, Min- 
nesota, in the capacity of agent. In September, 1907, he came to Evans- 
ville as general agent, which position he has since acceptably filled. 

On the 1st of September, 1901, Mr. Hart was marired to Miss Anna 
McKinnon, of Detroit, Michigan, a daughter of Angus and Mary (O'Neil) 
McKinnon. The father was a successful contractor of that city. Both he 
and his wife were natives of Prince Edward's Island but are how residents 
of Detroit, where Mr. McKinnon is living retired. The marriage of Mr. 
and Mrs. Hart has been blessed with one child, Francis Marion, bom 
April 23, 1905. They attend the Catholic church and Mr. Hart is in his 
fraternal relations connected with the Royal Arcanum. There are no un- 
usual chapters in his life record but it is the account of one who has been 
faithful to duty and whose loyalty and diligence have won him promo- 
tion. Such an example may well be followed, for it indicates the path 
to success. 



GEORGE BROSE. 



One of the best known millers of the Ohio river valley is George Brose, 
of Evansville. For forty years he has been identified with the milling busi- 
ness in this city and few men in the west have a more extensive knowledge 
of this great industry in all its bearings than has Mr. Brose. He is a son 
of Daniel and Christian Brose. His father was bom in Germany in 1815, 
and being an ambitious man and therefore desirous of improving his condi- 
tion, he came to America and located at Evansville in 1838. Two years after 
arriving in the city he was married to Miss Christina Jenner and ten children 
were born to them, five sons and five daughters: John; George; Thomas; 
Dr. L. D. Brose ; Sarah, the wife of William Alexander, Sr. ; Mary, the 
widow of F. W. Herrenbruck; and Emma, who is living with her sister 
Tillie, the latter the wife of Phil J. Klein. Two others are deceased. Daniel 
Brose was an enterprising business man and in addition to operating a dray 
line he was at the head of a flourishing grocery business. He was called 
to his reward in 1864. 

George Brose was born in this city, January 9, 1847. He proved to be an 
apt pupil in the public schools and after he laid aside his books at the age of 




GE0U(;E BK08E 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 195 

fifteen he began to assist his father in the grocery store, where he gained 
practical ideas in mercantile transactions which he has ever since been able 
to apply successfully. He had two brothers, John and Thomas, with whom 
at various times he was associated in business. A short time after the death 
of the father he and his brother John established a grocery business on 
Water street, where they continued for six years, closing out in 1871 in 
order to build a flour mill, which they conducted most successfully. The 
relations with his brother were terminated by the death of John in 1878, 
and George Brose then united with his brother Thomas in building a new 
mill, which was quite an improvement upon any previously erected at this 
point. In 1880 Thomas Brose withdrew to engage in business for himself 
and since that time the mill has been operated by the subject of this review 
and is now one of the largest flour mills in Evansville, having a capacity 
of four hundred barrels per day. This flour finds a ready market throughout 
a wide region which is not limited to the confines of any one state. 

In 1874 Mr. Brose was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Laval, a 
daughter of John Laval, a leading druggist of this city. One child, who died 
in infancy, was the result of this union. Mr. Brose has spent his entire life 
in Evansville and is recognized here as one of the captains of industry who 
has fairly won his honors, and also as a man who by his ability and public 
spirit has added materially not only to his own fortune but to the permanent 
welfare of the community. His interests have not been confined entirely to 
the milling business, as is indicated by the fact that for three years past he 
has been a director of the old State National Bank. He is an active member 
of the Evansville Manufacturers Association and has been for many years 
prominently connected with the Knights of Pythias, and the Benevolent and 
Protective Order of Elks. His influence has always been exerted in 
upholding the industrial and moral welfare of the city, and his record is 
one of which his friends are justly proud. 



MAJOR HAMILTON ALLEN MATTISON. 

Prominent in the history of the judiciary of Vanderburg county is 
written the name of Judge Hamilton Allen Mattison but his record on the 
bench is no more creditable than is that of his military experience, which 
brought him the well earned title of major, by which he is often called. 
For forty-four years he has continued in the active practice of law and as 
few men have done seems to realize the importance of the profession to 
which he is devoting his energies and the fact that justice and the higher 
attribute of mercy he often holds in his hands. His reputation as a lawyer 
has been won through earnest, honest labor and his standing at the bar 
is a merited tribute to his ability. 



196 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

A native of Rensselaer county, New York, Major Mattison was born 
in South Berlin, September 23, 1832, his parents being Allen J. and Lucy 
(Thomas) Mattison. After acquiring his early education in the district 
schools, at the age of nineteen years he entered the New York Conference 
Seminary at Charlottesville and while completing his education in that 
institution he earned enough as assistant teacher to pay for his tuition and 
living expenses. He afterward matriculated in Union College and was 
graduated therefrom with the class of i860. Taking up the profession of 
teaching he spent two years as principal of Bacon Seminary at Woodtown, 
New Jersey, but the continued attempt of the south to destroy the Union 
led him to feel that his first duty was to his country and in July, 1862, 
he enlisted in the Union army, raising a company which was afterward 
mustered in as a part of the Twelfth New Jersey Infantry, Mr. Mattison 
holding the rank of second lieutenant. His natural talent for military 
affairs and his strict adherence to duty led to his rapid promotion through 
the ranks, first lieutenant and captain to that of major. He served on the 
staff of Generals Alexander Hayes and Nelson A. Miles and was in twenty- 
five of the most important battles of the war. At Chancellorsville he was 
wounded three times and in the battle of the Wilderness had his horse shot 
from under him, was twice wounded and captured. Soon after his cap- 
ture he was introduced to General Robert E. Lee on the field and has a 
distinct recollection of his conversation with the Confederate commander. 
He was taken first to Lynchburg, Virginia, then to Danville, and soon 
afterward to Macon, Georgia, where he was confined until the following 
July "on short rations." He was next sent to Savannah and was one of 
fifty officers taken from that city to Charleston and placed under fire of 
the Federal guns that were shelling the city from Folly Island. Some weeks 
later he was confined with other prisoners in a prison pen at Columbia, 
South Carolina, where with scant food, no shelter and ragged clothing he 
was kept until November 28th, when he and another prisoner, Rev. John 
Scamahom, managed to make their escape. Notwithstanding that they 
were half starved and half naked they took to the woods, determined to inter- 
sect Sherman's army, then on its way to the sea. Traveling by night and 
concealing themselves by day, they succeeded in crossing the state of South 
Carolina and reached the Savannah river, where they procured a small 
boat. Managing to elude the Confederate guards and gunboats, they finally 
reached Savannah, which in the meantime had surrendered to General Sher- 
man. Thus after tramping nearly fifteen hundred miles through the 
enemy's country they found themselves once more under the protection of 
the old flag. Major Mattison was sent home to recuperate and ordered 
to report to the Army of the Potomac as soon as he was able for duty. 
Accordingly he joined that army about March i, 1865, and was engaged 
in all the military operations at Petersburg, Richmond and Appomattox 
until the final surrender. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 197 

Shortly after being mustered out, Major Mattison entered the Albany 
Law School and was graduated with the degree of LL. B. in 1866. He be- 
gan practice in connection with Hon. Marinus Fairchild, at Salem, New 
York, and in 1868 came to Evansville. This was the year of the presi- 
dential election and in the campaign he took active part in support of 
General Grant. In 1870 he was appointed county attorney and in 1871 ap- 
pointed prosecuting attorney in the county criminal court to fill a vacancy. 
The following year he was elected to the office for a two years' term and 
was soon afterward appointed register in bankruptcy by Chief Justice 
Waite, which position he held until the office was abolished. In 1887 he 
was appointed city attorney and served two terms, retiring from that office 
to become a member of the law firm of Mattison, Posey & Clark, which 
later became Mattison, Posey & Chappell. In 1896 he was elected judge 
of the circuit court for a term of six years, being the first republican ever 
elected to that office from the first judicial circuit. On his retirement from 
the bench he resumed the private practice of law in 1903 under the firm 
name of Mattison & Curry, and is now senior partner of the well known and 
prominent law firm of Mattison & Gore, with offices at 404 Furniture build- 
ing. He is recognized as a man of wide general information and in this is 
found one of the strong elements of his power and ability as a lawyer and 
jurist. This broad knowledge, enabling him to understand life in its varied 
phases, the motive springs of human conduct and the complexity of business 
interests, combined with a comprehensive familiarity with statutory law and 
with precedent, made him one of the ablest judges wh6 have sat on the 
circuit bench. To an understanding of uncommon acuteness and vigor 
he added a thorough and comprehensive preparatory training, while in 
his practice he exemplifies all the higher elements of the truly great lawyer. 
He is constantly inspired by an innate and inflexible love of justice and a 
delicate sense of personal honor which controls him in all of his personal 
relations. His fidelity to the interests of his clients is proverbial, yet he 
never forgets that he owes a higher allegiance to the majesty of the law. 
His diligence and energy in the preparation of his cases as well as the earn- 
estness, tenacity and courage with which he defends the right as he un- 
derstands it challenges the highest admiration of his associates. He in- 
variably seeks to present his argument in the storng, clear light of common 
reason and sound logical principle. 

In 1866 Mr. Mattison was married to the daughter of his first law part- 
ner, Marinus Fairchild. She died in 1873, leaving a daughter, who died 
in 1892. On the 7th of February, 1878, Major Mattison married Miss Hen- 
rietta M. Bennett of Evansville. 

Since 1862 Mr. Mattison has been a member of the Masonic fraternity 
and he is a past master of Reed lodge; past high priest of Evansville 
Chapter, R. A. M. ; past illustrious master of Simpson council, R. & S. M. ; 
and past eminent commander of La Valette Commandery, K. T. Such in 



198 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

brief is the life history of Judge Mattison, whose mihtary experience, 
whose service on the bench and whose connection with the legal profession 
constitute important chapters in his life record, all characterized by an 
honor and fidelity that none question. 



JAMES L. KING. 



James L. King, who is known in Union township, Vanderburg county, 
as one of its successful farmers, owning a well improved place of one hun- 
dred and seventy-eight acres, which he has operated for many years, has at 
the same time assisted according to his opportunities in the upbuilding of 
the community. He is a native of Union township, born February 17, 1844. 
At that time a large part of the country north of the Ohio river was thinly 
settled and many of the advantages possessed today were lacking. Means 
of communication were uncertain and transportation was by wagon or boat 
and educational facilities were limited to the little schoolhouse where a 
teacher had charge of pupils ranging in age from six years to twenty and the 
birch rod was largely depended upon to maintain interest and discipline. 
The boys and girls grew up, however, in closer contact with nature than is 
possible under the conditions of today and they developed strong constitu- 
tions and a spirit of independence and self-reliance which are now often 
sadly lacking. 

The father of our subject was John F. King and the mother before her 
marriage was Judith B. Neal, of Virginia. They were married about 1832. 
Mr. King was a pilot with headquarters in 1830 at Parkersburg, West 
Virginia, and he operated on the Ohio and Mississippi as far south as New 
Orleans. After his marriage he opened a store at Henderson Ferry in this 
county and later brought a farm, which he conducted until his death in 
October, 1879. There were six children in his family. 

The subject of this review was educated in the district schools and 
trained under his father in the operation of the farm. Before he reached 
manhood the great Rebellion aroused the patriotic instinct of young men 
throughout the northern states and he offered his services to the Union, 
enlisting in Company H, Eighth Kentucky Volunteers, serving for one year 
in that command, at the end of which time he enlisted in the One Hundred 
and Twentieth Indiana Volunteers, continuing until the close of the war, 
when he was mustered out at Raleigh, North Carolina. He was a good 
soldier and his honorable discharge is one of the valuable possessions of the 
family. After leaving the army he returned to his native county and to the 
farm, which he conducted with a goodly measure of success, carefully culti- 
vating the soil which year after year has yielded its wealth, so that he attained 
a position of comparative independence — a position to which all should 
aspire and one attained more generally by the farmer than perhaps by 
followers of any other occupation. 




JAMES L. KING 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 201 

On January 28, 1869, Mr. King was happily united in marriage to Miss 
Louise L. Long, a daughter of Simeon and Mary (Harrington) Long, the 
former of whom was a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Tennessee. 
Her father came to Vanderburg county in 1830 and here he took up land 
which he cleared and cultivated for many years. He attained a position of 
prominence in this county and served as a member of the board of county 
commissioners. To Mr. and Mrs. King were born the following children : 
Ida Mary, now Mrs. Richard Ely; Nettie A., who married WiUiam H. 
Watson ; Ora, who died at the age of three years ; and Amy L., the wife of 
Charles Long. 

Mr. King has been a lifelong republican and is an earnest supporter of 
the principles of that party. While he has not sought public office, he was 
chosen county commissioner in the fall of 1886 and served with great credit 
for three years during the time that the new courthouse was being erected. 
He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic. In his private life 
Mr. King has adhered to the principles of patient diligence and conscientious 
discharge of every obligation and as the result he has the confidence and 
respect of the entire community. 



GUILD C. FOSTER. 



Guild C. Foster, clerk of the circuit and superior courts of Vander- 
burg county at Evansville, receiving the compliment in 1908 of the largest 
vote cast for any candidate on the ticket, was bom in this city September 
II, 187a, and is a son of James H. and Henrietta R. Foster. The father, 
also a native of Indiana, was bom in Pike county, attended the Evansville 
high school and later continued his studies in the university of Blooming- 
ton, Indiana, from which he was graduated. 

Guild C. Foster pursued his education in the Evansville schools until 
completing the grade work. At the age of sixteen he entered the employ 
of the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad Company in a clerical capacity 
but later business interests took him to the far west, when he accepted a 
position in the office of the Southern Pacific Railroad Company at San 
Francisco, California, there remaining until 1891. In that year he located 
at Chicago, accepting a position in the freight department of the Wabash 
Railroad Company, with which he was connected until 1894. Retuming 
to Evansville, he was for one year in the freight department of the 
Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad Company, at the end of which time 
he was called to public office in his appointment to the position of deputy 
clerk of the circuit and superior courts in 1896. Eight years of service in 
that capacity, bringing him intimate knowledge and experience in the duties 
of the office, well qualified him for the work which is now his and to which 
he has devoted his attention since 1904. It was in that year that he was 



202 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

elected clerk of the circuit and superior courts for a four years' term, and in 
1908 he received indorsement of his service in his reelection, his personal 
popularity and the confidence reposed in him being indicated at that time 
by the largest vote given to any candidate on the county tickets. He has 
always been a stanch advocate of the republican party, holding closely to 
its platform and doing all in his power to secure the adoption of its prin- 
ciples. 

Mr. Foster was married in Evansville to Miss Emma Heberer on the 
14th of January, 1896, and they have two children, Henrietta and Edward, 
aged thirteen and ten years respectively. The daughter is now a high 
school student while the son is still doing the work of the grades. The 
family attend the Presbyterian church, of which Mr. and Mrs. Foster are 
members. He belongs to the Masonic fraternity, his membership being 
in Evansville lodge, A. F. & A. M. ; Evansville chapter; Knights Templar 
commandery; and Indianapolis consistory, in which he has attained the 
thirty-second degree of the Scottish Rite. He is likewise a member of 
the Mystic Shrine at Evansville, and belongs to the Benevolent and Pro- 
tective Order of Elks. In more strictly social lines, which do not empha- 
size the fraternal spirit, he is connected with the Country, the Crescent 
and the Press Clubs. Much of his life has been spent in Evansville, his 
native city, and that his salient qualities commend him to the good will of 
those with whom he comes in contact is evidenced by the fact that many 
of his warmest friends are numbered among those who have known him 
from his boyhood. 



WILLIAM A. CARSON. 

Thorough technical training and broad experience qualify William A. 
Carson for his present prominent position in the business world — that of 
general manager of the Evansville Railways Company, to which he was 
elected on the 6th of July, 1908. He was born in Shelby county, Indiana, 
October 4, 1881, and is a son of Lafayette and Laura Carson. The father, 
who was bom in Franklin, Indiana, in 1854, spent his early youth there and 
in 1864 became a resident of Shelby county, Indiana, where he was identified 
with farming interests for many years, removing to Indianapolis, in 1888. 

William A. Carson was a lad of about seven years when his parents went 
to Indianapolis, where he pursued his education in the public schools, eventu- 
ally becoming a pupil in the manual training high school, from which he was 
graduated with the class of 1901. Soon afterward he secured a position as 
bill clerk and timekeeper with the National Automobile Company of that 
city, being thus employed until 1903, when he went to the Indianapolis & 
Cincinnati Traction Company as chief clerk to the general superintendent, 
serving in that capacity until 1906. He was then assistant general manager 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 203 

of the Indianapolis, Columbus & Southern Traction Company until July, 1908, 
when he came to Evansville and was made general manager of the Evans- 
ville Railways Company, a position for which his previous experience had 
well qualified him. On the ist of July, 1910, he was appointed general man- 
ager of the Owensboro City Railroad Company and of the Henderson Trac- 
tion Company, which properties were acquired by the principal stockholders 
of the Evansville Railways Company with a view of bridging the Ohio River 
and connecting Owensboro and Henderson with Evansville by electric line. 
The Evansville Railways Company comprises the Evansville & Mount Ver- 
non Electric Railway, the Evansville Terminal Railway and the Evansville 
& Eastern Railway. In his position as general manager he has supervision 
of all of these interests and keeps abreast with the times in all that concerns 
electric railway transportation. He is sufficiently familiar with the work of 
the electrician and of the mechanic to know what is demanded along those 
lines and, moreover, possesses keen executive ability and administrative 
power. The combination of these qualities render him particularly well 
adapted for the work which engages his attention, and thus he has forged 
steadily ahead to a prominent place in the business circles of southwestern 
Indiana. 

Mr. Carson was married in Indianapolis to Miss Vesta Ruth Hann in 
June, 1906. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, belonging to Reed 
lodge. His study of the political issues and questions of the day has led him 
to give earnest support to the republican party, while his religious opinions 
are manifest in his membership in Grace Memorial Presbyterian church. 
He has attained an enviable position for one of his years, and the powers 
that he has displayed augur well for further success in the future. 



HARVEY L. MEADOWS. 

Perhaps no other country has contributed so much to the colonization 
and civilization of the new world as has England. Therefore her language 
became the tongue of the American people and her manners, customs and 
modes of thought have left their impress for all time upon the American 
nation. Among those who in the middle of the nineteenth century came to 
the United States from the mother country was Harvey L. Meadows, who 
was born on the merrie isle in 1823, acquired his education there and re- 
mained a resident of that land until 1854, when he crossed the Atlantic to the 
United States. Immediately afterward he continued his journey into the 
interior of the continent until he reached Evansville and in this city he was 
afterward identified with banking interests until his death. He was first 
connected with the old National Bank as bookkeeper for a few years and 
when Mr. Bement organized a bank he became the first bookkeeper in the 
new institution and later was cashier, filling that position until his demise 
in 1881. 



204 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Ere leaving England Mr. Meadows was united in marriage to Miss 
Jemima Peters, and unto them were born two children, Willis J. and 
Emily S. Following the death of the mother Mr. Meadows married again. 
Miss Cornelia Hatchett, of Henderson, Kentucky, becoming his wife in 1871. 
They had one son, Harvey H., now living in Atlanta, Georgia, who is mar- 
ried and has a son, Harvey H., Jr. Mrs. Meadows was a daughter of 
John A. Hatchett, a farmer residing at Henderson, Kentucky, and a sister 
of Dr. J. G. Hatchett, who was a very prominent physician of Evansville for 
many years, associated in practice with Dr. Walker. He died, however, in 
July, 1896. 

Mr. Meadows possessed marked artistic taste and talent. His was a 
natural gift and although he never studied art, he devoted his leisure mo- 
ments to painting and displayed such proficiency that when he sent some of 
his canvases to England the art judges of that country considered them 
worthy of a place in the National Gallery in London. He had the highest ap- 
preciation for beauty of coloring and symmetry in form and the effects of 
light and shade were to him a constant delight. Moreover he possessed the 
ability of transferring his impressions to canvas, his paintings certainly pos- 
sessing high merit. During his residence in Evansville he took keen interest 
in everything pertaining to the welfare of the city. In England he had been 
a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He joined the Home 
Guards during the period of the Civil war, being ready to defend the inter- 
ests of this state if military strength was thus needed. He belonged to the 
Presbyterian church and was one of the founders of the first library in 
Evansville. His public spirit w£ls manifest in many tangible ways and his 
cooperation proved a valuable factor where projects of public moment were 
involved. The honor and respect which his fellowmen accorded him were 
a freewill and spontaneous offering — ^given in recognition of his personal 
ability and worth. 



DR. ISAIAH HAAS. 



No history of Vanderburg county would be complete without mention 
of Dr. Isaiah Haas from the fact that he was one of the earliest superinten- 
dents of the Western Union Telegraph Company in the Mississippi valley 
and afterward one of the successful dental practitioners of Evansville. 
He is justly classed with those whose labors have been an element in pro- 
moting the civilization and development of this section of the country. 

Ohio claimed him among her native sons, his birth having occurred in 
Newark on the 22d of February, 1829. His father, Adam Haas, was bom 
in Virginia on Christmas day of 1798 and in early manhood removed to 
Newark, Ohio, where he met and married Miss Christina La Pert, of New 
York. Later he went with his wife to Delaware county, Ohio, where he 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 205 

began merchandising and in the year 1845 he crossed the boundary line 
into Indiana, settling at Wabash, the county seat of Wabash county, where 
he conducted a store until i860. 

In his youthful days Dr. Isaiah Haas acquired a fair education, after 
which he assisted his father in the store as bookkeeper and salesman. His 
identification with telegraphic interests was the result of chcince rather 
than carefully formulated plans. In 1849, when the Morse electric tele- 
graph line was being extended west, an office was opened at Wabash above 
his father's store and a teacher was sent to instruct a young lawyer of 
that place how to use the instrument. The lawyer being slow to learn. Dr. 
Haas was solicited by friends to go upstairs and learn to manipulate the 
key. To this he consented and in ten days he was able to receive and send 
messages. The next three or four years were devoted to his new posi- 
tion as operator. Soon, by sense of hearing, he read the faintest murmur- 
ings of the telegraph and became one of the expert operators of the west. 
About this time Ezra Cornell, of Ithaca, New York, the founder of Cornell 
University, had become lessee of nearly one thousand miles of telegraph 
line in the states of Ohio, Illinois and Indiana and made Dr. Haas superin- 
tendent of the line and all of the offices connected therewith. In this posi- 
tion he displayed excellent administrative ability and executive force, care- 
fully managing the interests of a newly developing enterprise, which was 
to have immeasurable effect upon the history of the world. 

It was while connected with telegraphic interests that Dr. Haas was 
married to Miss Adaline McHenry, of Vincennes, Indiana, who a few 
years later died of tuberculosis. Two children were bom unto them but 
within three years mother and children had passed away. 

Before severing his connection with telegraphic interests Dr. Haas' at- 
tention had been called to dentistry and he felt that it offered him a wider 
field and scope. He began studying with Professor A. M. Morse, of La 
Fayette, Indiana, as his first preceptor and later under Dr. Samuel Wardle, 
of Cincinnati. He learned dentistry prior to coming to Evansville and for 
seven years followed the profession in La Fayette before establishing his 
home in this city. 

In 1857 Dr. Haas married Miss Sarah K. McHenry, a sister of his 
first wiie, and to them were born eight children, six yet living. Two years 
after this marriage he started southward but on account of low water was 
unable to get a boat and was detained for two days in Evansville, where 
he unexpectedly met some old-time friends who insisted that he make 
this city his future home. A few weeks later and he had become a per- 
manent resident here. He not only successfully practiced dentistry but 
also assisted Dr. Bray, from whom he rented his office, in his surgical oper- 
ations and it was said that Dr. Haas had no superior in the state as an 
assistant in surgical work. Moreover, he was recognized as the most promi- 
nent dentist in the state because of his comprehensive knowledge of the 



206 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

science and his practical workmanship, his high ideals in his profession be- 
ing equaled only by his achievements. 

Dr. Haas was also prominent in Masonry, serving as district deputy 
master for four years and as lecturer of the district for four years, and 
in his life he exemplified the beneficent spirit of the craft. He was one of 
those whose labors were an important element in the early development 
of Evansville and this section of the state and his close following of high 
ideals was an influence that worked for good among others. He departed 
this life in 19CX). 



J. J. GROENINGER. 

Within recent years Evansville has become an important manufacturing 
center with large productive industries that not only constitute a source of 
gratifying revenue to stockholders but are also elements in the city's growth 
and progress, as they furnish employment to many workmen. Mr. Groen- 
inger is connected with the industrial interests of the city, being now sole 
proprietor of tin and galvanized iron works. He was born in Evansville, 
February 5, 1864, and is a son of Fred and Justina (Holzhauer) Groen- 
inger, both of whom were natives of Germany, whence they came to Amer- 
ica in early life. They were married in Evansville, where the mother is 
still living. The father was a carpenter and contractor and did much 
building in and around Evansville, many structures in this district still 
standing as monuments to his skill and handiwork. In the family were 
two sons and two daughters, the brother of our subject being Henry F. 
Groeninger, also of Evansville. The sisters are: Mrs. Christiana Wolf, 
a widow; and Mrs. Lizzie Dennis, both living in Evansville. 

At the usual age J. J. Groeninger entered the public schools but when 
thirteen years of age began working in a furniture factory, covering chairs. 
Two years were spent in that way, after which he secured a position in a 
cooper shop, where he was employed for about three years. He afterward 
began working for G. Puder & Company, proprietors of tin and galvanized 
iron works. Twelve years were spent with that firm, during which time he 
became familiar with the business in every department, thoroughly master- 
ing every task and gaining therefrom a knowledge and experience which 
have well qualified him for his present undertaking. On the expiration of 
that period he started in business on his own account with capital which 
he had saved from his earnings, his careful expenditure enabling him to 
gather a sum sufficient to start out independently in business. It was on 
the i6th of June, 1892, that he opened his present establishment. For a 
time he had two partners but later purchased their interests and is now 
sole owner of the business, which is constantly growing in volume and im- 
portance. He owns the building which he occupies and employs from eight 




J. J. GKOEXIXGER 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 209 

to twelve men. He belongs to the Masters Sheet Metal Workers Asso- 
ciation and to the Builders Exchange, in which he was a director for some 
time. He is a stockholder in the Mercantile Trust & Savings Bank and has 
made for himself a creditable position and an honored name in the trade 
and financial circles of the city. 

On the 1st of October, 1889, Mr. Groeninger was married to Miss Millie 
E. Brown, of Orange county, Indiana, and they now have two sons and 
two daughters: Fred H. and William E., who work with their father; 
and Eloise E. and Margaret J., at home. The family belong to St. John's 
Evangelical church and Mr. Groeninger is also connected with the Red 
Men and with the Haymakers. In politics he is an unfaltering advocate 
of democracy, and he takes an active interest in all public affairs, cooper- 
ating in the movements and measures which he deems of value to Evans- 
ville or regards as of vital significance to the country at large. 



ALBERT J. VENEMAN. 

Albert J. Veneman, engaged in the practice of law since 1898, a keen 
analytical mind enabling him to correctly determine the relative value of the 
points of his cases, is regarded as both a strong advocate and safe counselor 
and is accorded a liberal clientage. He was bom in Evansville, December 31, 
1870, a son of August and Julia (Reitz) Veneman. The father was bom 
in Germany while the parents were temporarily sojouming there. Following 
their return to America he pursued his education in the schools of Evans- 
ville and after attaining his majority entered business circles in connection 
with his brother-in-law, conducting a mercantile establishment under the 
firm name of Reitz & Veneman. Later he became connected with the Ullmer 
& Hoedt Brewery and was associated with that enterprise until his death, 
which occurred in 1880. 

At the age of six years Albert J. Veneman was sent as a pupil to the 
Catholic parochial schools, wherein he pursued his studies to the age of 
fourteen years. He was a lad of only ten years at the time of his father's 
death. On leaving school he secured a position as messenger with the 
Bradstreet Mercantile Agency, with which he was connected for two years. 
He then engaged with the Evansville Gas Light Company as collector from 
1887 until 1890 and on the expiration of that period went to Chicago, where 
he entered the employ of the Ansonia Electric Company as traveling salesman. 
He also represented the Central Electric Company in the same manner and 
for two years was identified with those Chicago houses. Returning to Evans- 
ville, he entered the circulating department of the Evansville Courier and 
was thus identified with the paper until 1896. Desiring, however, to become 
a member of the bar, in January, 1897, he began reading law in the office 
and under the direction of Hon. H. M. Logsdon. In September of that 



210 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

year he matriculated in the Indiana State University at Bloomington, where 
he pursued his studies for a year, after which he again entered the office of 
Mr. Logsdon and supplemented technical training by practical experience in 
assisting Mr. Logsdon as well as studying under his direction. In June 
1898, he was admitted to the bar and in the twelve years of his practice 
has been very successful. In 1906 he was appointed city attorney. He has 
won for himself very favorable criticism for the careful and systematic 
methods which he has followed and as an orator possesses more than or- 
dinary ability. The utmost care and precision characterizes his preparation 
of a case and has made him one of the successful attorneys of Evansville. 

Mr. Veneman was married, in Bloomington, Indiana, in February, 
1901, to Miss Anna Kelly. They are members of the Catholic church 
and Mr. Veneman is serving on the board of the parochial counselors of 
the Church of the Assumption. He belongs to the Knights of St. John 
and to the Knights of Columbus and is one of the officers of the latter 
organization. 

Mr. Veneman's political allegiance is given to the democracy and he 
is recognized as one of the local leaders of the party, serving as chairman 
of the city democratic committee. Above all things else, however, he pre- 
fers to concentrate his energies upon his professional duties and his devo- 
tion to his clients' interests is proverbial. 



MORITZ H. SCHELOSKY. 

Evansville — growing and prosperous — numbers among its citizens many 
men of marked enterprise, whose business activity is contributing to the 
development and upbuilding of the city — men whose force of character 
and native ability have carried them from humble positions to places of prom- 
inence. To this class belongs Moritz H. Schelosky, the president of the 
Schelosky Table Company, in which connection he is the controlling factor 
is one of the important manufacturing industries of Evansville. 

He was bom in Breslau, Germany, March 30, 1848, and is a son of 
Friedrich William and Christiana Wilhelmina Schelosky. The father, also 
a native of Breslau, came to America in 1852 with a family of eight chil- 
dren, four sons and four daughters and made his way direct to Evans- 
ville. Soon afterward he took up farming in German township, Vander- 
burg county, and was thus identified with agricultural interests until his 
death. 

Moritz H. Schelosky was but six years of age when he accompanied 
his parents on the emigration to the United States. The district schools 
afforded him his early educational privileges, his studies being continued 
until he reached the age of fifteen years, when he entered commercial cir- 
cles, going to Owensville, Indiana, where he secured a clerkship in the 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 211 

general mercantile store of W. A. Speck, with whom he remained for eight 
years. His broadening experience well qualified him for further respon- 
sibilities and upon his return to Evansville he entered the retail dry-goods 
house of Hudspeth & Miller, with which he remained as salesman for 
eighteen years. He afterward spent two years as a salesman in the em- 
ploy of John Gilbert, a retail dry goods merchant, but laudable ambition 
prompted him to engage in business on his own account and when his in- 
dustry and economy brought him sufficient capital to justify such a ven- 
ture, he organized the firm of Schelosky & Company in 1882 for the manu- 
facture of extension tables. He did not become an active factor in the 
management of the business, however, until 1891. The enterprise was 
established on a small scale, but the business has constantly grown and 
developed and the output today includes a general line of library and ex- 
tension tables of high grades. The business has been remarkably success- 
ful, as is indicated by the fact that they now employ sixty men, besides being 
represented by twenty sales agents throughout the United States and 
Canada. The business was incorporated in September, 1907, under the 
style of the Schelosky Table Company, with Moritz H. Schelosky as the 
president; Adolph R. Schelosky, vice president; and O. A. Klamer, sec- 
retary, treasurer and general manager. The plant of the company is now 
an extensive one, splendidly equipped with modem machinery, and a large 
force of workmen are employed, so that the industry is one of material 
benefit to the city as well as a source of gratifying income to the stock- 
holders. 

Mr. Schelosky was married in Evansville on the 22d of November 
1877, to Miss EHzabeth Grese, and their attractive home is the center of 
many delightful social functions. Mr. Schelosky gives his political alle- 
giance to the republican party. He also holds membership in the Presby- 
terian church, of which he is a trustee and of which he has been elder. 
He belongs to that class to whom the world instinctively pays deference 
because of upright life and honorable purpose. At no time in the stress 
of business, in his relations as a citizen or in his associations in socal life 
does he ever forget the duties and obligations which he owes to his fel- 
lowmen, and his personal traits of character have won him high esteem. 



CHRIST KANZLER. 



A genius for organization and marked executive ability have gained for 
Christ Kanzler a prominent position in industrial and financial circles of 
Evansville. Many corporate interests feel the stimulus of his enterprise and 
cooperation but his time is given most largely to the interests of the Me- 
chanics Planing Mill. Of the company operating this industry he is the 
president and he is also senior partner in the well known firm of Christ 
Kanzler & Son, leading contractors of Evansville. 



212 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

A native of Baden, Germany, Mr. Kanzler was bom on the 3d of January, 
1850, and is a son of Charles and Marie Kanzler, also natives of that country. 
The father was bom on the ist of April, 1816, and in early manhood leamed 
the cabinet maker's trade, which he followed throughout his entire life, his 
labors being ended in death on the 25th of Febraary, 1886. 

At the usual age Christ Kanzler entered the public schools, which he 
attended to the age of fourteen years in accordance with the educational 
lines of his native land. He afterward learned the cabinet making trade 
with his father, under whom he served an apprenticeship of four years, 
thoroughly acquainting himself with every department of the work and 
becoming an expert in that line. The favorable reports which he heard con- 
ceming America and its broader business opportunities led him, however, 
to seek a home in the new world and crossing the Atlantic he made his way 
direct to Evansville, where during five years he was employed by various 
contractors. On the expiration of that period he started in the building and 
contracting business in partnership with Jacob Pippus under the firm name 
of Pippus & Kanzler. This association was maintained until 1888, after 
which Mr. Kanzler was alone in business until 1904, when he admitted his 
son to a partnership under the firm name of C. Kanzler & Son. They conduct 
a general contracting business and have been identified with many of the 
important building operations of the city. Among the buildings they have 
erected are the Young Men's Christian Association building, the Louisville 
& Nashville Railroad depot, the Lincoln Cotton Mill, the Hercules Buggy 
Works, most of Cook's brewery, the building for the Sisters of the Poor, 
the courthouse at Spencer, Indiana, the postoflSce at Jeffersonville, Indiana, 
and the roundhouse at Cairo, Illinois. In 1898 Mr. Kanzler was elected 
president of the Mechanics Planing Mill and as the chief executive officer 
has contributed much to the success of that enterprise which is one of the 
extensive, important and productive industries of the city. The plant is large 
and thoroughly equipped and the output finds a ready sale on the market. 
In addition to these interests Mr. Kanzler is a director of the American 
Trust Company, a director of the Evansville Railways Comany and a stock- 
holder in the Advance Works. His recognition of favorable opportunities 
in business has been one of the strong forces in a progress that has led him 
constantly forward until he stands today in the front rank among the suc- 
cessful business men of Evansville. 

On the 24th of April, 1873, in this city, Mr. Kanzler was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Margaret Singer and unto them have been born eight children, 
five still living: August, who is secretary and treasurer of the Mechanics 
Planing Mill ; Amelia, now the wife of Henry KoUker, of this city ; Margaret, 
a graduate of the high school and well known in musical circles ; Louise and 
Bessie, who are also high-school graduates. 

The family attend the St. John's Evangelical church, of which Mr. Kanz- 
ler is a member. He is also identified through membership relations with 
Lessing Lodge, A. F. & A. M., the Knights of Pythias lodge, the Lieder- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 213 

kranz and the Turners. His political allegiance has been given to the republi- 
can party since he became a naturalized American citizen, and his interest 
in public affairs is manifest by active and helpful cooperation in all those 
movements which he deems of benefit to the city. Coming to Evansville in 
early manhood, with no capital save a knowledge of his trade and firm deter- 
mination, he has gradually worked his way upward and is regarded as one 
of the prominent men in business circles whose judgment is sound, whose 
insight is keen and whose business integrity none question. 



SAMUEL G. RICKWOOD. 

The commercial and financial concerns, the social, poHtical and religious 
interests which constitute the chief features in the life of every city, have 
all profited by the spirit of cooperation of Samuel G. Rickwood. While he 
has been successful in business his life has never been self-centered, but has 
reached out to the broader interests which aflfect mankind, and at all times 
has cast the weight of his influence and aid on the side of progress, reform 
and improvement. He is today a factor in the successful control of a number 
of important business concerns in Evansville where the greater part of his 
life has been passed, although he was born at Chatteris, Cambridgeshire, 
England, October i, 1858. His parents were Samuel and Sarah (Wright) 
Rickwood. The father came to the new world to investigate its opportuni- 
ties and advantages, and believing that he might provide better for his 
family in this country than in his native land, he was joined by his wife and 
children and the grandfather, arriving in Evansville, Indiana, in 1859. In 
the meantime Samuel Rickwood had become connected with the Ingle Coal 
Company and was thus prepared to care for those dependent upon him for 
support. 

Samuel G. Rickwood was not yet a year old when the mother crossed 
the Atlantic. At the usual age he entered the public schools and had become 
a pupil in the high school when, at the age of fifteen years, he put aside his 
text-books to enter upon an apprenticeship under George Brinkman, who 
was engaged in the monument business. He learned stone-cutting and at the 
age of twenty-four years formed a partnership with Adam Lannert, in the 
building stone business. They also engaged in contracting and erected many 
buildings which are still substantial structures in this city. The firm was 
succeeded by the Ohio Valley Stone Company, Mr. Rickwood and Mr. Lan- 
nert becoming the principal stockholders with headquarters at Pennsylvania 
and Oakley streets. The enterprise has been incorporated and they conduct 
a general stone contracting business, their trade now having reached exten- 
sive proportions. Mr. Rickwood has not limited his efforts to this field alone, 
however, but has become an active factor in the successful management and 
conduct of other business concerns. He was for four years engaged in the 



214 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

slate and tile roofing business and is vice president of the Ohio Valley Roof- 
ing Company. In positions of a more public nature he has done creditable 
service acting for the past ten years as secretary of the Evansville Manufac- 
turer's Association, while for two years prior to that time he was its presi- 
dent. He was for three years president of the Builders Exchange but re- 
signed in January, 1910, in order to accept appointment to a position on the 
board of public works of the city of Evansville, of which he is now president. 

On the 6th of October, 1880, Mr. Rickwood was married to Miss Louise 
Alt, of Evansville, a daughter of John and Louise (Bastion) Alt. The 
family were pioneer people of Evansville, where for many years Mr. Alt 
continued business as a contracting painter. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Rickwood 
have been born eight children, of whom two sons and two daughters passed 
away in childhood. The surviving members are: Mabel L., the wife of 
W. E. Miller, of Augusta, Indiana : Ruth A., who wedded Charles H. Hitch, 
of Patoka, Indiana; Roland L., bom June 11, 1892, who is a high school 
graduate and is now in the employ of the Vulcan Plow Company ; and Lela, 
who was born September 7, 1894, and is now a high school student. 

The family hold membership in the Presbyterian church and Mr. Rick- 
wood is also connected with the Tribe of Ben Hur and the Court of Honor. 
He is one of the directors and the first vice president of the Young Men's 
Christian Association and he gives his political support to the republican 
party. He has long been a close student of the sociological, economic and 
political condition of the country and is greatly interested in questions which 
he regards as of vital significance to the public. His interest in all concerns 
relative to the city's welfare is ever sincere and wherever substantial aid will 
further public progress it is freely given. 



LOUIS FRITSCH. 



Louis Fritsch, a popular and enterprising florist of Evansville, who is 
recognized by his business associates as thoroughly capable in his special 
line, is a son of Joseph and Johanna (Neu) Fritsch, the former of whom 
was bom in Cincinnati, Ohio. There is a romance in the history of the 
family and one of the chief actors in this romance is at the head of the 
household where the subject of this review makes his home. The story 
begins at East Friesland, Germany, in 1835, when a girl was born whose 
father was an officer to the imperial government. The daughter grew to be 
a graceful and beautiful girl of fifteen, when she was married to Count 
Van Der Var, of noble ancestry, and started upon a life that gave promise 
of long years in the midst of affluence and luxury. The Count and his 
bride started upon a tour of the world and after visiting various places in 
Europe came to New York, finally arriving in Cincinnati, Ohio, where the 
husband was seized with a fatal illness and died, leaving his wife among- 




LOUIS FRITSCH 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 217 

strangers and in a strange land. Dr. Ludwig Fritsch, a native of Bielefeld, 
Prussia, and a graduate of the medical department of the University of 
Bonn, was attending physician at the time of the husband's death and later 
he and the widow were united in marriage, Joseph Fritsch, the father of 
our subject, being the result of this union. The family came to Evans- 
ville, where the son was educated in the pubHc schools and later he and his 
father established a florist business under the title of Ludwig Fritsch & 
Son. In June, 1900, Dr. Fritsch was called to his final rest and was suc- 
ceeded in business by his son, who was the father of two children, Louis 
and Paulina. 

Louis Fritsch grew up in Evansville and after the death of his parents 
he and his sister were adopted by Mrs. Dr. Fritsch, by whom they were 
educated. In 1908 he entered the business which his father had laid aside 
and in his work has been highly successful. Being a lover of plants and 
flowers and also a man of fine business qualifications, he has developed 
the business and enlarged operations until it produces substantial returns 
and is one of the well established institutions of Evansville. 



CLIFFORD T. CURRY. 



Cliiiford T. Curry, engaged in the practice of law in Evansville for 
thirteen years, being now an associate of Edgar Durre, was bom in Bath 
county, Kentucky, in May, 1873, a son of George M. and Lou Curry. The 
father was bom in Dearbom county, Indiana, in 1847, and was graduated 
at Morris Hill College and supplemented his literary education by study in 
the Ohio Medical College of Cincinnati, from which he was graduated with 
the M. D. degree. He afterward removed to Bath county, Kentucky, where 
he continued in the practice of medicine until 1890, when he became a 
resident of Lebanon, Ohio, where he is still successfully following his 
profession. 

Spending his youthful days in his parents' home, Clifford T. Curry de- 
voted much of his time to the acquirement of an education in the graded 
and high schools of his native city imtil seventeen years of age, when he 
entered the National Normal University at Lebanon, Ohio, and therein 
pursued his studies to the age of twenty-one. Determining upon the prac- 
tice of law as a life work, he matriculated in the Columbian University now 
known as George Washington University of Washington, D. C, and was 
graduated in 1897 with the LL. B. degree. Having thus quaHfied for the 
practice of law he came to Evansville and opened an office in connection 
with two other young men who in that year had been admitted to the bar. 
In 1899 he was appointed deputy prosecuting attorney by Edgar Durre and 
so continued until 1901 when he received the appointment of city judge 
from Mayor Covert and served upon the municipal bench until 1906. His 



218 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

decisions were strictly fair and impartial and on the whole won the en- 
dorsement and approval of the members of the bar. During this period 
Mr. Curry also practiced law in connection with Hamilton A. Mattison until 
March, 1910. In June following he formed a partnership with Mr. Durre 
and is now devoting his entire attention to the private practice of the law, 
in which connection he has gained a large and distinctively representative 
clientage. His devotion to the interests of those whom he represents in 
the courts is proverbial and yet he never forgets that he owes a still higher 
allegiance to the Majesty over all. He is strong and forceful in his plead- 
ings and in argument, his deductions are logical, and his application of legal 
principles correct. 

On the 28th of July, 1900, Mr. Curry was married in Evansville to Miss 
Carolyn Reavis and unto them has been bom a son, George, who at the 
age of nine years is a pupil in the public schools. The parents hold mem- 
bership in the Presbyterian church and are interested in its work and up- 
building. 

Mr. Curry gives his political allegiance to the republican party but while 
he is a stanch advocate of its principles, he has never sought office outside 
of the strict path of his profession. Fraternally he is connected with the 
Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Eagles and with Reed Lodge, 
A. F. & A. M., and is loyal to the teachings and purposes of these organ- 
izations. His friends, and they are many, find him a man of social, genial 
nature, while in his chosen field of labor he is recognized as a strong and 
able advocate and counselor. 



CARL SCHULTZE. 



Carl Schultze, president and general manager of the Evansville Broom 
Company and also identified with other business interests of this city, was 
born in Westphalia, Germany, June 30, 1857, his parents being Theodore 
and Frederica (Miller) Schultze. He was a pupil in the public schools 
until fifteen years of age, when he began learning the brass molding and 
casing business, in which he continued for three years. On the expiration 
of that period he came to Evansville, where he entered the employ of his 
uncle, who was senior member of the firm of Schultze, Thuman & Com- 
pany. For seventeen years he remained with that house in the molding de- 
partment and then turned his attention to the saloon business, in which he 
has been engaged since that time. In 1906 he became one of the organizers 
of the Evansville Broom Company and was elected to the vice presidency, 
being made president and general manager in 1910. This enterprise has 
proved a successful one, the growth of the business being manifest in the 
fact that twenty-five people are now employed. The output finds a ready 
sale in the local market and throughout the United States, and the plant 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 219 

is thoroughly equipped with modern machinery to facihtate the work. Mr. 
Schultze is also a member of the executive board of the Advance Stove 
Works and is regarded as one of the progressive business men of this city, 
possessing the energy and determination that enable him to carry forward 
to successful completion whatever he undertakes. 

In November, 1883, Mr. Schultze was married in Evansville to Miss 
Frederica Reiser, who died in January, 1901, and on the 30th of June, 
1907, he was again married, his second union being with Miss Lottie Haus- 
man. They have two children : Freda, two years of age ; and Helen, who 
is yet in her first year. 

Mr. Schultze is a member of several fraternal organizations. He be- 
longs to the Elks Lodge, No. 116; the Fraternal Order of Eagles; the 
Knights of Honor; and the Knights of Fidelity. His political allegiance 
is given to the republican party. Dependent upon his own resources from 
the age of fifteen years, he has worked his way upward, and whatever suc- 
cess he has achieved in business is attributable to his own labors. He 
has been found diligent, determined and reliable, and gradually has gained 
a substantial measure of success since he crossed the threshold of the 
business world. 



JAMES W. WILTSHIRE. 

When Evansville was a small town of little commercial or industrial 
importance James W. Wiltshire cast in his lot with its early setters, ar- 
riving in the year 1848. He was then a young man of nineteen, his birth 
having occurred in Rockingham county, Virginia, in 1829. His father, 
Weeden Wiltshire, also a native of the Old Dominion, came to Evans- 
ville in 1858. He was a cooper by trade but did not engage in business af- 
ter removing to Indiana. The mother, Mary (Travis) Wiltshire, was 
also bom in the Old Dominion. They became the parents of fifteen chil- 
dren of whom only two are now living, Benjamin S. and Pembroke. 

The public schools of his native state afforded James W. Wiltshire his 
educational privil^es, and he afterward learned the cooper's trade, which 
he followed in the south until 1848. Arriving in Evansville, he at once 
engaged in coopering as a traveling man, and later entered into a partner- 
ship with Henry Kreipke, opening a shop at the comer of Third avenue 
and Pennsylvania street. Their trade grew rapidly and for many years 
they carried on a general cooperage business on an extensive scale. Mr. 
Wiltshire was also for a time engaged in the draying business with his 
son-in-law, John Peltz, but retired a few years prior to his demise, en- 
joying in his last days the fruits of former toil and carefully directed busi- 
ness affairs. 



220 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Mr. Wiltshire was married twice. He first wedded Miss Sarah Ann 
Knaus, who at her death left a family of one son and four daughters, 
namely: Smith Wiltshire, Mrs. John Peltz, Mrs. Theodore PfHing, Mrs. 
Laura Van Dyke, and Almire, the wife of Dr. Charles Evarts, of Indian- 
apolis. For his second wife Mr. Wiltshire chose Elizabeth De Troy and 
they have three children, two sons and a daughter: Sadie, now the wife 
of Oscar Weiss; James D., of Indianapolis; and Blaine, a resident of 
Evansville. 

The death of Mr. Wiltshire occurred November 25, 1906. Mrs. Wilt- 
shire still resides in the old home on First avenue, where they have lived 
for many years. His political endorsement was given to the republican 
party and for two terms he served as a member of the board of public 
works under Mayor Aikens. He was greatly interested in the welfare 
and upbuilding of Evansville and his labors in behalf of the city were al- 
ways of a practical and resultant character, given unselfishly for the ben- 
efit of the city. His life was a busy, active and useful one, and his recti- 
tude of character and integrity of business gained him the honor of his 
fellowmen. 



HENRY E. HODGKINS. 

Centuries ago the Greek philosopher, Epicharmus, said: "Earn thy 
reward; the Gods give naught to sloth," and the truth of this admonition 
has been verified in all the ages which have run their course since that 
time. Realizing that he must labor if he would win success, Henry E. 
Hodgkins has throughout his entire life put forth earnest effort, and his 
well directed industry has at length brought him to a creditable position 
in the commercial circles of Evansville, for he is now president of the 
Attic Furniture Company and sole owner with his sons, Bennie and Elbert, 
having purchased the business from his former partners September i, 
1910. 

His birth occurred in West Louisville, Kentucky, on the 14th of July, 
1868, his parents being Joseph and Margaret Hodgkins. He attended the 
public schools of his native state until nineteen years of age and afterward 
engaged in clerking in a grocery store in Owensboro, Kentucky, until 
twenty-two years of age. He then bought a farm near West Louisville 
and carried on general agricultural pursuits for eight years, on the expira- 
tion of which period he returned to Owensboro and took charge of the 
boiler room of the Sellous War Ship Packing Factory, occupying that 
position for three years. He next came to Evansville, where he engaged 
as a cabinet-maker with the firm of Stoltz & Smith, furniture manufac- 
turers, with whom he continued for thirteen years, the length of his service 
being indicative of his fidelity as well as excellent workmanship. Desiring, 




HENRY E. HODOKINS 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 223 

however, that his labors should more directly benefit himself, he embarked 
in business on his own account in the manufacture of kitchen cabinets 
and has since developed and conducted a growing and important industry 
under the name of the Attic Furniture Company, of which he is president. 
He is continually making improvements in his product and turns out vari- 
ous kinds of cabinets, from the most simple to the most intricate in design. 
These find favor with the thrifty housewife, who recognizes not only the 
convenience of the cabinet as an article of kitchen furniture but also the 
economy of time and labor which it promotes. A number of workmen are 
now employed and the output of the factory is sent to all parts of the 
country. 

Mr. Hodgkins was married in February, 1888, in West Louisville, 
Kentucky, to Miss Fidelia Hungate, and unto them have been born the fol- 
lowing children, namely : Elbert M., Ambrose, Ben Franklin, Mary Bertha, 
Melvin, Eddie and Alice Marie. 

In his political views Mr. Hodgkins has always been a stalwart demo- 
crat since age conferred upon him the right of franchise. In his fraternal 
relations he is connected with the Tribe of Ben Hur and his religious faith 
is indicated by his membership in the Catholic church. He may truly be 
called a self-made man, for he laid the foundation for his success in in- 
dustry and determination and has builded thereon through perseverance 
and good management. 



EMORY H. HANNETT. 

Emory H. Hannett, general agent at Evansville for the International 
Harvester Company of America, was born in Shepherd, Michigan, March 
10, 1872, and is a son of Thomas and Carolina E. Hannett. His prelimin- 
ary education was acquired in the district schools, which he attended un- 
til he was sixteen years of age, after which he continued his studies in 
Alma College at Alma, Michigan, being graduated therefrom in 1889. He 
then returned to his native town and accepted a position as assistant cash- 
ier with Hannett, Ward & Company, bankers, with whom he remained 
until 1896. He then engaged as traveling collector in Michigan for the 
Deering Harvester Company of Chicago and so continued until 1898, at 
which time he was transferred to their Chicago office, where he had charge 
of collections for the state of Iowa for one year. At the end of that time, 
at his request, he was transferred to the sales department as blockman at 
Owosso, Michigan, and in 1900 he came to Evansville at general agent in 
charge of the Deering Harvester Company branch at this place, filling the 
position until 1903, in which year the International Harvester Company 
of America was organized, when he was transferred to Louisville, Ken- 
tucky, as collection agent for Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky. He occupied 
that position until 1907, when he again returned to Evansville as general 



224 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

agent for the consolidated companies. In this connection he has been very 
successful, his territory covering sixteen counties in Kentucky, ten coun- 
ties in Indiana and nine counties in Illinois. The company handles the 
Champion, Deering, McCormick, Milwaukee, Osborne and Piano harvest- 
ing machines as well as many newer lines of agricultural implements and 
employs at this branch from fifty to sixty people according to the season. 
Upon the recommendation and at the earnest solicitation of Mr. Hannett, 
the International Harvester Company of America recently erected a three 
story brick and basement office and warehouse building with an area of 
fifty-three thousand square feet of floor space and equipped with all 
modem improvements for the conduct of a business of this character. 

On the 19th of August, 1902, Mr. Hannett was married in Evansville 
to Miss Maude F. Porter, and they have two children, Dorothy Virginia 
and Martha Alice, aged respectively six and four years. Mr. Hannett 
is a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and is popular 
not only with the brethren of that fraternity but also with those whom 
he meets in other social and business relations. His long connection with 
the trade has made him thoroughly familiar with the different phases of 
the business which is under his charge and his administrative direction 
and executive ability are strong features in the success which is attending 
the Evansville house. 



BANKING IN EVANSVILLE. 
By Henry Reis. 

In the year 1834 the first bank was established in Evansville, it be- 
ing a branch of the Old State Bank of Indiana. Its capital was eighty 
thousand dollars, part of which was owned by the state and the remainder 
by individual stockholders. This bank later became the branch of the 
Bank of the State of Indiana; then, in 1865, it was merged into the Evans- 
ville National Bank, which later, in 1885, was succeeded by the Old Na- 
tional Bank, whose charter expired December 22, 1904, and was succeeded 
by the present Old State National Bank of Evansville. 

The Evansville Insurance Company was organized in 1850, and its 
charter contained insurance and banking privileges of a liberal character, 
which enabled it, under the free banking law of Indiana, to do business 
in the name of the Canal Bank. In 1863 this bank was incorporated as 
the First National Bank of Evansville and in 1883 its charter was extended 
for another twenty years. In 1902 the First National Bank was succeeded 
by the City National Bank. 

The Citizens National Bank commenced business in 1874, at 121 Upper 
First street, as the successor to the banking house of W. J. Lowry & Com- 
pany, and later moved to its present quarters, comer of Second and Main 
streets. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 225 

The German National Bank obtained a charter in 1873 and later was 
changed to the German Bank, and in turn was succeeded by the Evans- 
ville Trust & Savings Company, the three organizations having occupied 
the same location, comer of Third and Main streets. 

The People's Savings Bank commenced business on May 5th, 1870, at 
222 Main street, and has made no change in location up to the present 
time. 

The Ohio Valley Trust Company has taken the place of the Bank of 
Commerce and was located in the B. M. A. building, corner of Second and 
Sycamore streets; both are now out of existence. 

The Merchants National Bank (owned largely by the Bements and 
Captain Gilbert) was organized in 1865 and went into voluntary Hquidation 
after a very successful career. 

The directors of the West Side Bank held their first meeting October 
28, 1902. 

The American Trust & Savings Company commenced business Decem- 
ber I, 1904. 

The Commercial Bank opened March 10, 1906. 

The Farmers & Citizens Bank, Howell, was organized June 18, 1906. 

The Mercantile National Bank and the Mercantile Trust & Savings 
Company opened for business January 2, 1907. 

The Bankers National Bank opened on December 9, 1907. 

The Exchange Bank opened a short time then closed up its affairs. 

Of the banks and bankers who did business in Evansville in days gone 
by, I would mention the Crescent City Bank, which had for its cashier 
a very able man, William Baker, who later became mayor of Evansville. 
Mr. Baker was the brother of the Hon. Conrad Baker, governor of this 
state during the '60s. 

The palm of seniority among private bankers should be given, I be- 
lieve, to Guild Copeland, the others being Messrs. W. J. Lowry & Com- 
pany, M. Lyon, Theodore Venneman & Sons, (dealers in foreign ex- 
change) and Messrs. Samuel M. Archer & Company. Should any name 
have been omitted in the haste of preparation the writer prays to be for- 
given. 

In order to illustrate the progress of Evansville as indicated by the 
published bank statements, I would say that the banks of Evansville had 
in 1880 a combined capital of $2,000,000.00; surplus $545,000.00; loans 
$4,027,193.39; deposits $2,193,037.45. In 1890 we find the capital to be 
$1,450,000.00; surplus $593,800.00; loans $4,300,545.83; deposits $4,737,- 
170.49. In 1900 the figures were: capital $1,450,000.00; surplus $443,- 
250.00; loans $4,341,937.95; deposits $6,024,859.97. 

By referring to the statements of 1907 we find twelve banks in Evans- 
ville, the bank at Howell being included, with a combined capital of $1,780,- 
000.00; surplus $655,000.00; loans $9,712,751.51; deposits $13,869,533.64. 



226 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Of the clearings of 1880 and 1890 we have no record. The clearings 
for 1900 were $47,279,043.70. The clearings for 1907 were $102,436,- 
094.34. 

The figures speak for themselves. The increase in deposits from two 
millions to thirteen millions and the increase in the clearings from forty- 
seven millions to one hundred two millions in eighteen years are the best 
evidence of the prosperity of the people of Evansville and the certain 
approach of what we are all working for — a "greater and better Evansville." 

As evidence of the friendly relations existing between the business as- 
sociations of Evansville and its banks I have only to recall to your minds 
the voluntary and kindly resolutions passed by the E. B. A., the E. M. A. 
and the R. M. A. during the panic of 1907. 

I will not attempt to give any new theories upon banking, only to say 
that in addition to our national banks there might be established a "cen- 
tral bank" with a large capital, which could be owned by the present na- 
tional banks and held by them in amounts proportioned to their capital. 
This central bank, being a governmental bank, would have power to largely 
increase its circulation in times of great money stringency and thus be 
helpful to the national banks by rediscounting paper or otherwise render- 
ing assistance as occasion might require. The central bank would not do 
business direct with the people but would confine its transactions to busi- 
ness with banks and thus prove of great benefit at all times, and by its 
helpfulness preventing panics and thus removing an element of recurring 
or periodical danger. 

In this connection I would mention that in foreign countries this central 
bank idea largely prevails in some form, with charters granting various 
privileges, but in the main the general principles governing the business 
are the same. 

As these central banks are largely under government control, and in 
some few countries are actually owned by the governments, it is therefore 
easily seen that a very large proportion of the government money finds 
its way into these banks and thus becomes available to some extent at 
least for assisting the smaller banks when these have a greater demand for 
money than they are able to supply. 



THE OLD STATE NATIONAL BANK. 

The Old State National Bank of Evansville, Indiana, which commenced 
business under its present name on December 23, 1904, is the successor of 
the Old National Bank, one of the oldest and best financial institutions in 
the state. It began business in 1834, when a charter was granted to the 
State Bank of Indiana. For the first three years the bank was located at 
the comer of Main and Water streets, but in 1837 it was removed to the 




OLD STATE NATIONAL BANIC 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 229 

site now occupied by the present bank. The State Bank of Indiana was 
succeeded in 1855 by the branch of the Bank of the State of Indiana and 
the business was conducted under this name until 1865, when it was re- 
organized as the Evansville National Bank under the national banking 
act and chartered for twenty years. Upon the expiration of the charter 
the bank was again reorganized and rechartered as the Old National Bank, 
which occupied the same quarters at Nos. 20-22 Main street. For many 
years the bank has been recognized as one of the substantial concerns of 
the city of Evansville, and as the new institution is in good hands, it is safe 
to predict for it the same prosperity and conservatism that marked the 
career of its predecessors. 

The capital of the bank is five hundred thousand dollars, surplus and 
undivided profits, two hundred and thirty-five thousand dollars. The offi- 
cers of the new bank are: Henry Reis, president; H. H. Ogden, cashier. 
The directors are James L. Orr, Alexander Gilchrist, William H. McCurdy, 
(Marcus S. Sonntag, Allen Gray, W. M. Akin, Henry Wimberg, Sidney L. 
Ichenhauser, George Brose, Henry Reis and H. H. Ogden. The bank has 
a larger capitalization than any similar institution in southern Indiana, 
has exceptional strength and established facilities. Its policy enables it to 
extend every accommondation for business consistent with sound methods 
and it is the depository for the United States, the state of Indiana, the 
county of Vanderburg and the city of Evansville. 



LOUIS W. WINTERNHEIMER. 

Louis W. Wintemheimer, who for a quarter of a century has lived in 
Vanderburg county, now makes his home in Knight township upon one 
of its fine farms devoted to the cultivation of grain and to the raising of 
stock. In the latter connection he has become widely known, especially 
in the breeding of draft and coach horses. He was born in Posey county, 
Indiana, in 1861 and obtained his education in the schools of that locality 
while spending his youthful days upon his father's farm. 

His father, Louis Wintemheimer, Sr., came from Germany to America 
when a young man, settled in Posey county and through the careful con- 
duct of business interests and judicious speculation became one of the rich- 
est residents of that locality, at one time owning a thousand acres of land. 
He was also the owner of a flour mill at Blainesville, Indiana, and always 
took an active interest in the affairs of his county, seeking advancement and 
progress along the lines where the best interests of the county were con- 
served. His earthly pilgrimage was a long one, terminated by death in 
September, 1903, when he had reached the age of eighty-eight years. His 
wife had passed away on the 22nd of September of tlie previous year, at 
the age of eighty-one. In their family were three sons and a daughter 
but the latter is deceased. 



230 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

The usual experiences of farm life in Posey county constituted the 
record of Louis W. Winternheimer until he reached the age of twenty- 
four years, when in 1885 he came to Vanderburg county and purchased 
one hundred and ten acres in Armstrong township. With characteristic 
energy he at once began to clear the land, enhanced its productiveness by 
draining the fields and put many improvements upon the place. After liv- 
ing there for some time he sold the property and purchased a half interest 
in the Imperial Hotel in Evansville and also one hundred and sixty acres 
of land in Knight township, where he built a fine home and a large and 
substantial barn. It is upon this place, to which he has added other im- 
provements, that he is now making his home and here he has since fol- 
lowed farming and stock-raising. He organized a company and sold im- 
ported horses and has the reputation of having raised some of the finest 
draft horses of the county, while his attention is now given to the raising 
of coach horses. 

In 1885, in Posey county, Mr. Winternheimer was married to Miss 
Elizabeth Mann, a daughter of Martin Mann, a prominent and wealthy 
citizen of that county. They became the parents of four children: Will- 
iam L. and Edgar F., both of whom are in Evansville ; Lena F. ; and Mar- 
tin J. The wife and mother died March 21, 1908, and her loss was deeply 
deplored by many friends as well as her immediate family. 

Mr. Winternheimer belongs to St. John's church. In politics he has 
always been a republican and his personal popularity is indicated in the 
fact that he is the only man in his township that has been elected to office 
on the republican ticket in thirty-two years, he having been chosen trustee 
two years ago. While always interested in the political situations and keep- 
ing well informed on the questions and issues of the day, he prefers to give 
his undivided attention to his business affairs and the twenty-five years of 
his residence in this county have proven the worth of his opinions and 
methods of business operation. 



HARVEY C. WEBER. 



Harvey C. Weber, city clerk of Evansville, is one of the promising 
young men whose life has been spent in this city and who occupies a posi- 
tion of honor and responsibility by the vote of many who have known 
him almost from his boyhood. He was born July 28, 1879, and is a son of 
August J. and Frances Weber. His father, now living in Evansville, is 
a native of Louisville, Kentucky, where he was born June 5, 1848. He was 
educated at Fort Wayne, Indiana, and in i860 came to Evansville, having 
resided in this city for fifty years. He is a harnessmaker by trade and 
is now engaged in that business, to which he has devoted many years. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 231 

Harvey C. Weber received his education in the public schools and the 
high school of Evansville, graduating from the latter at sixteen years of age. 
He was an apt student and soon after graduating he entered the service 
of the Evansville & Terra Haute Railroad as stenographer and thus con- 
tinued for five years. He then joined his father in the harness business 
and became a partner in the firm, theirs being one of the long standing and 
successful enterprises of the city. For a number of years Mr. Weber has 
been interested in politics and his services were recognized in 1909 by his 
nomination on the republican ticket as city clerk. He was elected to this 
office in November, 1909, and since January i, 1910, has filled the posi- 
tion with credit to himself and his supporters. 

On the 15th of April, 1903, Mr. Weber was united in marriage to Miss 
Delia Wahnsiedler, of this city, and two children have blessed this union: 
Florence Olga, now four years of age; and Mildred Louise, two years of 
age. 

Mr, Weber is a member of the First Ward Republican Club and has for 
a number of years held membership in the Methodist church. In fraternal 
circles he is well known, being identified with the Elks, Eagles, Owls and 
Foot Lake Fishing Club. His connection with these organizations is in- 
dicative of social characteristics which are well developed and make him 
a prime favorite among his associates. In business circles of Evansville he 
is also favorably known on account of his recognized ability and a genial 
disposition, which makes friends wherever he is known. 



BENJAMIN FRANKLIN GILLETT. 

Benjamin Franklin Gillett, deceased, was a representative of one of the 
early families of this city and his upright life gained him a firm hold upon 
the affections of his fellow townsmen. His name was ever an honored one 
for he guided his conduct in harmony with the teachings and principles of 
the Methodist Episcopal church, of which he was long a devoted and con- 
sistent member. Though more than a third of a century has come and 
gone since he passed away, his memory is yet cherished and revered by 
all who knew him. One of the native sons of Evansville, he was born Au- 
gust 24, 1837. His father and grandfather were among the early settlers 
here and took an active part in the pioneer development and upbuilding of 
the city. The grandfather built a log schoolhouse on what is now upper 
First street — the first in the city, and with other work and events which 
have left their impress upon the history of Evansville the name of Gillett 
is closely associated. 

At the usual age Benjamin F. Gillett entered the public schools, but 
when still quite young became a factor in business life and from that time 
afterward was dependent upon his own resources, labor and ability for 



232 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

maintenance and success. He drove the first city express wagon in Evans- 
ville and for many years was connected with the postoffice service as mail 
carrier. He was always an active man, performing the duties that lay 
nearest his hand, and at the time of the Civil war he espoused the cause 
of the Union, joining the boys in blue of the Twenty-fourth Indiana In- 
fantry, with which regiment he went to the front. Later he was trans- 
ferred to the Fourth Cavalry, serving until the close of the war with the 
rank of corporal. 

On the 3d of March, 1859, Mr. Gillett was united in marriage to Miss 
Elizabeth Crofts, a daughter of John Crofts, who came to America from 
England, his native country, and when a young man began to work for 
the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad Company, filling the position of 
night man at the depot for forty years. He was always faithful to his 
duty and enjoyed the unqualified confidence of the company which he 
represented. He married Hannah Skinner, and ere death claimed them 
they celebrated their golden wedding. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Gillett were 
born four children: Fannie, whose birth occurred February 11, i860, was 
married in 1882 to William Fisher and died March 13, 1887, leaving a 
daughter, Ida Bessie, who is now the wife of Thomas Jordan and has one 
son, Thomas T. Jordan; Franklin, the only son, bom October 10, 1862, 
is deceased; Katie Lillian, born April 30, 1868, became the wife of Jesse 
Ellis Clark on the 6th of May, 1896, and has one child, Bernice Gillett 
Clark, bom November i, 1900; Susie Gertrude, the youngest member of 
the family, was bora February 22, 1870, and has now passed away. For 
about thirty-five years after the death of her husband Mrs. Gillett was 
employed as a nurse. 

In his political views Mr. Gillett was always a stanch republican, join- 
ing the party soon after its organization, for at that time age conferred 
upon him the right of franchise. Socially he was connected with the In- 
dependent Order of Odd Fellows. His entire life was permeated by an 
uplifting religious faith, for in young manhood he joined the Methodist 
church, in which he became an earnest and untiring worker, acting as one 
of the first Sunday school superintendents of the Kingsley Methodist 
church. His life was ever noble in purpose, honorable in action and loyal 
to duty, whether in his relations to family, friends or the general public. 



DAVID HEIMANN. 



Through the successive stages of an orderly progression in business, 
David Heimann has reached a creditable position, having for seven years 
engaged in the electrical supply business, in which his labors are meeting 
with substantial results. Evansville is his native city and his natal day 
was May 20, 1857. His parents were Isaac and Louise Heimann, and the 
family name indicates the German nativity of the father, who on emigrat- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 233 

ing to the new world came to Evansville in the early '50s, walking all the 
way from New York, carrying with him a peddler's stock, which he sold 
en route. After reaching Evansville he established and conducted a lunch 
stand on the wharf and later engaged in the bakery business on Water 
street. Gradually his close application, energy and capable management 
brought him substantial reward for his labor and enabled him to extend 
the scope of his activities so that in 1853 he engaged in the wholesale and 
retail grocery business. In 1870 he moved to First and Vine streets, where 
he established a wholesale grocery and liquor business, meeting with suc- 
cess in the undertaking. Later he sold a half interest to S. Kahn and some 
time afterward disposed of his remaining interest in the business and re- 
tired to private life. His death occurred in 1894 and thus was closed the 
life record of one who had long been closely associated with commercial 
interests in Evansville and who by untiring thrift and diligence had gained 
for himself a creditable position in commercial circles. 

David Heimann was a pupil in the public schools of Evansville to the 
age of fifteen years, after which he filled a clerical position with the firm 
of Bush & Hink, general insurance agents for a year and a half. He then 
joined his father in the grocery business and after working in the store 
for two years went upon the road as a traveling salesman, thus represent- 
ing the house until 1879. He next engaged with the Adams Express Com- 
pany as messenger on the Louisville packet Rainbow for four months, and 
later for nine and a half years on the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad 
as expressman and baggageman. In 1887 he began traveling for the Edge- 
wood Distillery Company, which he represented until the fall of 1888, when 
he became messenger for the Adams Express Company and baggageman 
for the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad, fiUing the dual position until 
1890. He afterward traveled for three dififerent firms selling cigars and 
liquors until May i, 1892, when he took a position with the Evansville 
Street Railway Company as time keeper and pay master, during the time 
of the change from mule cars to electric. He was the first superintendent 
of electric cars in this city and so continued until January i, 1893, when 
he engaged as traveling salesman for Grill Brothers, wholesale cigar deal- 
ers, with whom he was connected until 1895. In that year he entered the 
service of H. Gumbert & Sons, wholesale liquor dealers, as salesman, and 
when six years had thus passed he went with The Thixton & Millet Whole- 
sale Liquor Company, of Owensboro, Kentucky, as salesman. He spent a 
year in that employ and a similar period with the H. Straus Cigar Com- 
pany of Cincinnati, after which he returned to Evansville and for six 
months was assistant water works clerk under Frank Calwell, water com- 
missioner. He afterward worked as general utility man in the city hall 
for a year, at the end of which time he took up the general electric contract- 
ing and supply business, which he has conducted successfully for seven years, 
receiving a good patronage in this connection. 



234 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

On the 15th of February, 1883, Mr. Heimann was united in marriage in 
Philadelphia to Miss Betty Joseph, and unto them have been born two 
children, Ella Louise, at home; and Beulah, who is attending the public 
schools. Mr. Heimann is a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order 
of Elks, gives his political support to the republican party and is of the 
Jewish faith. His life has always been a busy one, continuously occupied 
with the duties of the different positions which he has filled, and he seems 
now to have found an enterprise for which he is well qualified and in which 
he is meeting with substantial advancement. 



GEORGE A. HOEFLING. 

Among the well known farmers of Armstrong township, Vanderburg 
county, Indiana, is George A. Hoefling. He was born in the township 
where he now Hves, October 13, i860, and is the eldest son of George and 
Christina (Bohme) Hoefling, both of whom were natives of Bavaria, 
Germany, the former born December 26, 1829, and the latter in 1828. They 
came with their respective parents to America and located in Arm- 
strong township, this county, about one mile south of Armstrong. Here 
the paternal grandfather of our subject located on one hundred acres of 
timber land and is remembered as one of the pioneers of the region. He 
cleared the land after much labor and our subject in his memory goes back 
to the time when his grandfather made use of wood shavings and lard 
as a means of illumination at night, this being before the days of the ker- 
osene lamp. The grandfather passed to his reward at ninety years of age, 
in 1892, his wife having died eight years previously, at the advanced age 
of seventy-two years. Our subject's father, George Hoefling, removed 
from the farm to Evansville after the death of his wife and is now living 
retired, having by industry and thrift acquired a competence. He was a 
second time married and the lady of his choice was Miss Barbara Trunk, 
of German township. Two daughters and one son were born of this union. 

George A. Hoefling received his early education in the parochial school 
at St. Joseph, Vanderburg county. At fifteen years of age he began to 
devote his attention to the farm, continuing under his father for seven 
years, when he started for himself by purchasing seventy-eight acres of 
partially improved land in the neighborhood. Later he bought fifty-five 
acres of improved land, making a total of one hundred and thirty-three 
acres, all of which is located on section 29, Armstrong township, and which 
he has brought under a state of cultivation that makes it highly valuable. 
As a general farmer and live-stock raiser Mr. Hoefling is one of the most 
successful men in this region. He also deals extensively in horses, mules, 
hogs and cattle, which he fattens for the market and in the handling of 
which he has displayed a well trained judgment. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 235 

On August 27, 1882, Mr. Hoefling was married to Miss Katherine Helf- 
rich, a daughter of Peter and Appelone (Kissel) Helfrich, who are well 
known farmers of German township and natives of Germany, who came 
to this county in the early days. Her father died after becoming well es- 
tablished as a farmer in 1873 and the mother thirteen years later. Ten 
children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Hoefling; George J., who is 
married and lives on his father's farm; Mary I., now Mrs. M. Lutterbach ; 
Henry, who died at the age of three years ; Margaret ; Frank R. ; Cecelia ; 
Florence L. ; Aurelia ; Alfred J. ; and Thelma O. 

Mr. Hoefling early earned the money which made it possible for him 
to start in life, thus exhibiting a sturdy independence of character that is 
one of the most important elements in a successful career. By a continu- 
ance of the same spirit of self-reliance he has gained a permanent position 
as a leader in a farming community. He is an adherent of the principles 
of Thomas Jefferson as expressed from year to year in the platforms of 
the democratic party. In religious belief he is a Catholic and the sincerity 
of his faith is exhibited in an upright life and a helpfulness for others 
which is a beautiful characteristic inherited from worthy ancestors of the 
fatherland. 



ERNST A. SCHOR. 



Among the business men of Evansville who were bom and reared here 
and have attained positions of responsibility in a community where they 
have all their lives been well known, may be named Ernst A. Schor, secre- 
tary of the Karges Furniture Company. He was bom January 13, 1871, 
and is a son of R. F. and Mary E. Schor. His father whose sketch ap- 
pears elsewhere in this work, was a native of Germany and came to Evans- 
ville before the Civil war, at the age of twelve years. As general book- 
keeper he was connected with the First National Bank of Evansville for 
thirty years. He departed this life in 1889. He was a conscientious and 
conservative man, of unimpeachable honesty, and possessed many of the 
best characteristics that go to make up the ideal citizen. 

Ernst A. Schor was educated in the public schools until sixteen years 
of age, when he entered the printing house of W. H. Keller, where he con- 
tinued only six months, as a more favorable outlook appeared in the bank- 
ing field. The First National Bank, with which his father was connected, 
needed a mnner and this position he entered upon while in his seventeenth 
year. It was at the bottom of the ladder that he started but by application 
and faithful attention to the various duties he worked his way up until 
he became receiving teller. He resigned from the banking business in 
1905, after having been connected with the bank for nineteen years, and 
he there gained an insight into finances and business methods which prepared 



236 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

him for any responsibility he might assume. Since leaving the bank he has 
been actively connected with the Karges Furniture Company, and since 
March i, 1909, has been secretary and treasurer of the company and has 
charge of its office. The business has shown a gratifying increase and Mr. 
Schor is recognized among his associates as a capable and energetic busi- 
ness man, of good discernment and with ability in an emergencv to grasp 
the helm and guide the ship into smooth waters. 

In May, 1893, Mr. Schor was united in marriage in this city to Miss 
Anna Karges. Two children have been bom of this union: Esther, now 
fourteen years of age; and Anna Mary, twelve years of age, both of 
whom are attending the public schools. 

Mr. Schor is an adherent of the principles of the republican party and 
of the Presbyterian church. He is actively identified with social and 
fraternal organizations and is a member of the Knights of Pythias, the 
Royal Arcanum and the Accountant & Credit Men's Association. His 
record ever since he entered business life has been entirely clear and he 
possesses the friendship and confidence of a large circles of associates, who 
are among the best business men of Evansville. His influence is always in 
favor of law and the observance of those rules which experience has 
demonstrated are for the best interest of the state and of society. 



WILLIAM A. BROWNING. 

William A. Browning, head of the Browning Milling Company, one of 
the long established institutions of Evansville, first opened his eyes to the 
light of day at Inglefield, Indiana, April 30, i860. He is a son of George 
B. and Margaret (Trimbell) Browning, both natives of Indiana. Richard 
Browning, the grandfather of our subject, came to Indiana at a very early 
day and settled at Inglefield, where he established a flour mill. The busi- 
ness of which he was the founder has ever since been carried on by the 
family and is recognized as the oldest business of the kind in the state of 
Indiana. He was a pioneer of this locality and when he began as a miller 
he made use of ox power and tradition tells us that the capacity of the 
original mill was one and one-half bushels of wheat per day. This seems 
almost incredible, but the pioneer miller soon took advantage of such im- 
provements as came along and in 1838 he installed machinery for steam 
power and in 1858 he erected a fine new mill. He gained a reputation that 
extended far and wide as one of the best millers in the country and in 
1840 was awarded the grand prize at New Orleans for exhibiting flour 
which was declared to be the best in the United States. Grandfather 
Browning inducted his son into the mysteries of the business and he in turn 
taught his sons how to make good flour and how to place it upon the market 




WILLIAM A. BROW]S^N■G 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 239 

so as to increase the reputation of the house. Five children were born to 
Mr. and Mrs. George B. Browning : Nellie, the wife of Walker A. Scott, of 
Evansville; William A., the subject of this sketch; John, who married 
Miss Mattie Litchfield and is living at Inglefield; Morris, a resident of 
Inglefield; and Joseph, who married the daughter of an old Kentucky 
family. 

William A. Browning was educated in the public schools of Inglefield 
and also took a business course in the Commercial College at Evansville. 
At the age of eighteen he entered in the mill with his father, showing such 
aptitude that at twenty-one he was admitted to partnership in the firm. The 
business continued to grow from year to year and, larger facilities being 
necessary, the mill was moved to Evansville in 1894 and located at the 
corner of Iowa and Lafayette streets. Five years later a new and thor- 
oughly modern structute was completed at No. 11 Kentucky avenue, and 
here operations are now being carried forward upon a more extensive scale 
than ever before. 

Mr. Browning has been three times married. His first wife was Miss 
Mary MoflFett, of McCutcheonville, Indiana, who died in 1892, and in 1893 
Mr. Browning was married to Miss Hattie Johan, who was also called 
away. His present wife, to whom he was united in 1906, was Miss Ruth 
Saunders, a daughter of Isaac Saunders, a carpenter of this city. 

Representing the third generation of the family at Evansville, Mr. 
Browning occupies a unique position and has acquitted himself as becomes 
a good citizen and a true friend of his fellows. He is a veteran of the 
Spanish-American war, in which he served with high credit for eight 
months. In his business career he has aimed to maintain the high stand- 
ard that was inaugurated by his worthy grandfather and handed down by 
his father. As a public-spirited citizen of a growing community, he has 
recognized his duty to assist in all movements that have for their object the 
promotion of the welfare of this region and no citizen of Evansville de- 
serves more prominent mention in this work than William A. Browning. 



WILLIAM H. DEDRICK. 

Working his way upward from a humble position William H. Dedrick 
has always improved his opportunities and is now serving his county in 
the responsible position of superintendent of the County Infirmary. In- 
diana numbers him among her native sons, his birth having occurred in 
Harrison county, November 4, 1856. His father, John A. Dedrick, was 
bom in Germany and, coming to America in early life, settled in Indiana, 
where he met and married Miss Elizabeth Smyth, who was bom in this 
state. He was a millwright by trade, but in early manhood purchased a 



240 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

farm in Floyd county, Indiana, and devoted about ten years to the develop- 
ment and cultivation of that property. He then resumed work at his 
trade, which he followed for about twenty years, when he> retired from 
active business life and removed to Henderson county, Kentucky, where 
he resided until his death in December, 1881. For a considerable period 
he had survived his wife, who passed away in October, 1870. 

William H. Dedrick was a youth of fourteen years at the time of his 
mother's demise. From that* time forward he has been dependent upon 
his own resources and his energy and determination have constituted the 
foundation upon which he has builded his success. He was first employed 
in a rolling mill, in which he learned the business. He also learned the 
millwright's trade and remained in the mill for six years. On the ex- 
piration of that period he removed to Evansville and was employed for 
about six months in a rolling mill, when it was destroyed by a severe wind 
storm. At that time he used his savings to pay his tuition in a business 
college at Louisville, Kentucky, for he had realized the need of education 
as a preparation for advancement in the business world. He was grad- 
uated in 1873 and afterward began work with his father as a carpenter 
and millwright, devoting five years to those Hnes of business. There have 
been few idle moments in his life, for he has always labored diligently 
and persistently, realizing that earnest, honest work is the basis of success. 

On the I2th of December, 1878, Mr. Dedrick was married to Miss 
Martha Carleton, a daughter of Greene B. and Lucinda Carleton, who 
were natives of Indiana. At the time of their marriage Mr. Dedrick 
rented a farm in Vanderburg county and continued its cultivation for two 
years, at the end of which time he removed to Spencer county, Indiana, 
and invested in a tract of land. Four years were devoted to its further 
cultivation, after which he sold that property and returned to Evansville, 
where he began business as a contractor, continuing in that field of labor 
from 1892 until 1901. In the meantime he had been called to public office and 
had proven his trustworthiness by the capable and faithful manner in which 
he discharged his duties. It was in 1896 that he was elected county as- 
sessor, which position he filled for four years. He was then appointed 
superintendent of the Vanderburg County Infirmary, which is situated 
on the Stringtown road, and for the past ten years he has remained in 
charge here, capably managing the interests of the infirmary from the 
business standpoint and also from the standpoint of the welfare of its in- 
mates. 

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Dedrick have been bom six children : Elmer E., who 
died in February, 1883; Ervin, who died on the 29th of October, 1896; 
Elbert M., twenty-five years of age, who is now a member of the regular 
army, stationed at Fort Egbert, Alaska; Effie, who passed away in 1886; 
Alger H., twenty-two years of age, living at home; and William S., twelve 
years of age, who completes the family. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 241 

Both Mr. and Mrs. Dedrick are members of the Methodist church, loyal 
to its teachings and liberal in its support. His broad humanitarianism has 
made him considerate of others and in addition to the good work which 
he is doing at the County Infirmary he is also connected with the Home 
of the Friendless. He belongs to the Elks Lodge, No. ii6, of Evansville, 
while his political allegiance is given to the republican party. He has al- 
ways lived in Indiana and much of his life in Vanderburg county or this 
portion of the state, and those who know him recognize in him those 
qualities which in every land and cHme awaken admiration and merit 
emulation. 



FRED W. MILLER. 



Among the active young business men of Evansville, Fred W. Miller 
holds a responsible position and has proven himself to be the possessor of 
qualifications which his associates highly admire. He is a native son of In- 
diana and was born in Scott township, Vanderburg county, February 3, 
1873. His father was Henry C. Miller and his mother Mary (Breck- 
winkel) Miller, both of them being natives of Germany and of that stanch 
character which seeks to improve its surroundings even at the expense d^ 
great labor and separation from early home and friends. The father of 
our subject located in Gibson county, this state, and he showed his devotion 
to his adopted country by enlisting in Company G, Ninety-first Indiana 
Regiment, when he was twenty years of age and faithfully serving through 
the entire war for the cause of the Union. At the close of the Rebellion 
he came to Scott township and bought a farm of eighty acres, which he 
cleared and improved and upon which he lived until his death, which oc- 
curred in November, 1889. His faithful companion was called from earthly 
cares in May, 1896. 

Fred W. Miller was reared upon the farm and educated in the public 
schools, but after the death of his father he decided to devote his atten- 
tion to business affairs and he accepted a position as clerk under W. D. 
Miller, of Inglefield, Indiana. At the end of six years of faithful service 
he became identified with the mercantile establishment of Michael Bauer, 
of Darmstadt, Indiana, but at the close of twelve months came to Evans- 
ville and entered the employ of the Bement & Seitz Company, wholesale 
grocers of this city. Here he continued for seven years, at the end of 
which time he formed a partnership with D. H. Stork and began in the 
furniture business under the title of the Stork Furniture Company, of 
which Mr. Stork is president, J. W. Stork, vice president, and Mr. Miller 
traffic manager. The firm is one of the substantial enterprises of the city 
and its business gives promise of continued growth as time passes. 



242 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

On February 2, 1898, Mr. Miller was united in marriage to Miss Minnie 
F. Bauer, a daughter of Michael and Barbara Bauer, the former a native 
of Indiana and the latter of Germany. Mr. Miller is actively identified 
with the Woodmen of the World and is clerk of the Hooppole Camp, No. 
118, of Darmstadt. He usually gives his support to the candidates of the 
republican party and he and his wife are members of the German Evan- 
geHcal church. Mr. Miller has been successful in his business career and 
is ably seconded by his intelligent and faithful life companion so there is 
little doubt that he will continue to prosper. He is justly entitled to the 
esteem in which he is held by associates and acquaintances, as he has at- 
tained his present position by his own exertions and not through influence 
of others. Such men become the leaders in every community. 



FERDINAND FUNKE. 



Ferdinand Funke is numbered among those who were at one time lead- 
ing factors in the business activity of Evansville, their labors constituting 
an important element in the progress and business development of the city. 
Moreover, the methods which Mr. Funke pursued won for him the con- 
fidence and high regard of a circle of friends that was limited only by the 
circle of his acquaintances. He was bom in Riithen, a town in Westphalia, 
Germany, on the 8th of February, 1828. His father, Christolf Funke, 
was bom in Germany in the year 1790 and after attaining adult age mar- 
ried Caroline Glahne, who was born in the same country in 1795. He 
never left the fatherland but after his death his widow and her two sons, 
Ferdinand and John, came to America in 1848. 

Ferdinand Funke was at that time a young man of about twenty years. 
His education had been acquired in the schools of his native country. 
From time to time reports reached him concerning America, its business 
conditions and its opportunities, and the mother believed, too, that her 
sons would have better chances for business advancement on this side the 
water. Accordingly they bade adieu to friends and native country and in 
the year 1848 reached the new world, making their way soon afterward 
to Evansville, which was then a small town of little commercial or in- 
dustrial importance. 

Ferdinand Funke became identified with the business interests of this 
city as a gunsmith, opening a shop on Fulton avenue and First street. 
There he continued until 1859, enjoying a gradually increasing trade, which 
made his undertaking a profitable one. In the year mentioned he turned 
his attention to other pursuits, joining Henry Meyers in the establishment 
of a paper mill in Evansville, that has now had a continuous existence of 
more than fifty-one years and, conducted under the firm name of Ferdi- 
nand Funke Sons, is today one of the large and important productive in- 




FERDINAND PUNKE 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 245 

dustries of the city. Ferdinand Funke continued active in the conduct and 
control of that enterprise until 1893, when he retired, turning over the 
business to his sons. His remaining days, covering a period of two years, 
were spent in well earned rest, leaving him leisure for the enjoyment of 
such activities as were a matter of recreation and interest to him. 

On the 23d of May, 1859, in Evansville, Mr. Funke was united in 
marriage to Miss Mary Ann Kuntz, also a native of Germany, born at 
Bibles-Hesse, on the 28th of October, 1835. She was a girl of six years 
when she accompanied her parents to the United States, and they 
journeyed westward by way of the Erie canal, settling in Evansville soon 
after landing in the new world. Mr. and Mrs. Funke became the parents 
of six children, three sons and three daughters: Caroline, John M., Fer- 
dinand A., Anna M., Josephine and Joseph H. All are still living with 
the exception of Anna. 

At the time of the Civil war Mr. Funke joined the Home Guards for 
the protection of local interests against the invasion of Confederate forces. 
He was a director of St. Joseph's Catholic Cemetery Association and 
throughout his entire life was a devout member of the Catholic church. 
He never held to narrow or contracted opinions, however, being recognized 
on the contrary as a man of broad views and progressive spirit. He took 
a deep interest in all that pertained to public progress and in many ways 
cooperated in movements that promoted the welfare of his adopted city. 
That he made a wise step in coming to America is indicated in the excel- 
lent results which followed his efforts, for through his persistent and in- 
telligently directed labors he worked his way upward from a humble finan- 
cial position to one of prominence and affluence. 



PETER H. REDDINGER. 

It has been said that fortunate is the man who finds himself in a pro- 
fession or a business for which he is naturally adapted, and doubly fortun- 
ate is he who enters a vocation at the beginning of his career which he can 
joyfully follow through life. Observation and experience show that most 
men go to their tasks because they are driven by the stem urge of necessity 
and not through love for the work. 

But not so with the subject of this review. Bom with the artistic 
talent, he was so fortunate as to have opportunity for its expression very 
early in his career and the results have far exceeded his early dreams. He 
is now at the head of a large wood carving establishment, where beautiful 
creations are produced daily and whose products as met with in homes of 
the land are evidences of culture and refinement. 

Mr. Reddinger is a native of The Netherlands, Holland, where he was 
born September 20, 1872. He is a son of Harold and Grace Reddinger. 



246 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

His father was born in Germany and engaged as a merchant tailor, but feel- 
ing that America presented more favorable opportunities than could be 
expected in the old countries he emigrated in 1880 with his family to the 
United States, locating in Grand Rapids, Michigan. There he was identi- 
fied with the gents' furnishing business until his death, which occurred in 
1898. A love for education is one of the dominating characteristics of the 
German people and this important element in success in life is not often 
lost sight of by the fathers and mothers after they arrive on the shores 
of the western hemisphere. Peter H. Reddinger was accorded the ad- 
vantages presented by the public and high schools of Grand Rapids and, 
making good use of the opportunity, was at sixteen ready to begin his 
battle with the world. He was apprenticed to William Burking, manufac- 
turer of furniture, and in this establishment he received a fair start on 
the road to ultimate financial independence. After two and a half years 
with Mr. Burking, he became connected with Nelson, Matter & Company, 
also manufacturers of furniture, and remained with this firm for a period 
of two years. By this time his ability as a wood carver attracted him to a 
wider field and for three years he acted as head of the carving department of 
the Mattoon Manufacturing Company of Sheboygan, Wisconsin. His next 
experience was as foreman of the Converse Manufacturing Company, at 
Newaygo, near Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he remained for a year, at 
the end of which time he was called to Shelbyville, Indiana, as foreman of 
the carving department of the Conry & Barley Table Company. This posi- 
tion incurred greater responsibilities than Mr. Reddinger had previously 
assumed, but at the close of a period of three years he resigned, believing 
the time had arrived for him to become an independent producer. He ac- 
cordingly removed to Cincinnati and opened up a carving factory, which 
he successfully conducted until 1901, when the demands of a growing busi- 
ness induced him to locate permanently in this city as the most favorable 
spot in the Ohio valley for his line of industry. Until October, 1910, the 
work was carried on in the building owned by the Bosse Furniture Com- 
pany, but in 1910 a two story brick building was erected, with a floor space 
of one hundred and thirty-eight by fifty feet, and provided with the most 
modern facilities as to engine, boilers, etc. A dry house stands twelve feet 
away from the main structure and no features have been overlooked in 
order to make the plant capable of meeting requirements for some years 
to come. The factory gives employment to fifty men and manufactures 
a general line of wood carvings. Through natural ability, discrimination 
and practical experience Mr. Reddinger has built up a business which is 
contributing in no small degree to the prosperity of Evansville and has 
established for himself a reputation as a capable and progressive business 
man. 

On June 14, 1893, Mr. Reddinger was married at Sheboygan, Wiscon- 
sin to Miss Catharine Schuley. Mr. and Mrs. Reddinger have many friends 
in Evansville and are actively identified with the Indiana Social Club. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 247 

He is a member of Excelsior lodge, A. F. & A. M., Cincimiati, and also of 
the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and the Liederkranz. In 
politics he afifiliates with the republican party as the party which best ac- 
cords with the spirit of modern life, and he holds membership in the Luth- 
eran church. The work with which his life is identified is a beautiful art 
and ranks next to sculpture only because the materials used are not so 
enduring as bronze or marble. It represents in tangible form the ideal as 
it exists in the mind of the artist and its effects are always refining and 
elevating. Viewed in this light — which is the true one — men like Mr. Red- 
dinger, combining the business and artistic instinct, are a benediction to the 
world and their works will continue to exert a civilizing influence even long 
after the living representative has departed. 



HENRY W. KAMMAN. 



The distinguishing characteristic of men in all branches of professional 
or business life in America is the power of initiative. No other country of 
the world has produced so many men having the ability to perceive the 
opportunity and bravely to assume responsibilities which in the older coun- 
tries of Europe are the hereditary privileges of certain classes. Under the 
republic there is a free field and little favor, and any aspiring contestant may 
win provided he has within himself the resources to meet conditions as they 
arise and maintain his position in a race whose honors belong to the ablest 
and the strongest. The truth of the above facts are illustrated in numerous 
instances in the history of men in Evansville who are most prominent in 
public and business affairs. By their own effort have they made them- 
selves what they are. Among those who have attained an honorable place 
is Henry W. Kamman, for ten years past a practicing attorney of this city. 

He is a native of this state, having been bom at Holland, Indiana, April 
13, 1874, and is a son of H. W. and Sophie (Meyer) Kamman. The father 
was born at Osnabrfick, Germany, August 15, 1839, but when he was five 
years of age his parents started for America, seeking for more favorable 
opportunities for themselves and their children. While at sea his mother 
was taken with a fatal illness and died before her eyes rested on the land 
to which she had fondly looked as a haven for her family. The ship's 
journey ended at the port of New Orleans and from that city the home- 
seekers came up the river by steamer to Cincinnati, finally locating in Jack- 
son county, Indiana, where Mr. Kamman engaged in the manufacture of 
wooden shoes, for which there was quite a demand in the years previous 
to the Civil war. He prospered in his business and in 1858 he removed 
to Dubois county, Indiana, where he assisted in founding the present town 
of Holland, where the subject of this sketch was bom. The father be- 
came connected with the sawmill business, continuing until 1876, when he 



248 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

bought a farm and there he Hved until he was called from earthly labors, 
June 29, 1904, at the age of three score and five years. The mother of 
our subject, who was born in Franklin county, Ohio, September 14, 1843, 
is still living on a farm near Holland. 

Educated in the public schools, Henry W. Kamman began his active 
career as a district-school teacher. He taught for five years in Warrick 
and Posey counties, having in the meantime fixed his mind upon the law 
as his life profession. He became a student in the law department of the 
Indiana University at Bloomington, Indiana, graduating with the degree 
of LL. B. in 1900. He at once opened an office in Evansville, having been 
admitted to practice in the state and federal courts. From the beginning 
of his career at the bar he has shown an energy and ability which has at- 
tracted clients and been productive of an increasing measure of success. 
Having early been taught the lessons of self-respect, self-control and self- 
reliance, he has fairly won the position he has attained among the most 
respected members of the bar in Vanderburg county. 

On November 13, 1901, Mr. Kamman was united in marriage, at Evans- 
ville, to Miss Rickie Koch. Two children have blessed this union : Henry 
T., now eight years of age; and Marie, four years of age. Mr. and Mrs. 
Kamman are members of the Lutheran church and are actively identified 
with social and religious movements whose aim it is to ameHorate the 
condition of those less fortunate than themselves. Mr. Kamman is an 
advocate of the principles of the republican party. His principal attention 
is devoted to his profession, in which he is in more than one respect suc- 
cessful and which calls for the undivided energies of every advocate who 
aspires to its higher honors. 



JAMES W. KAMP. 



James W. Kamp, residing in Union township, is known as one of the 
large farmers of Vanderburg county. He is the owner of three farms 
which he has brought from the original uncultivated state to a high degree 
of productiveness, thus showing a constructive talent that is one of the 
desirable traits in human nature and is absolutely necessary in the develop- 
ment of all important enterprises. Mr. Kamp is a native of Union town- 
ship, bom September 25, 1870, and is a son of Bethel and Susan (King) 
Kamp, the former of whom was born in Germany and the latter in this 
county. Bethel Kamp came to America with his parents when he was 
eight years of age, the family locating in Indiana, where the son grew 
up and received his education. At the opening of the Civil war, when the 
great wave of patriotism swept over the north, Mr. Kamp, then only six- 
teen years of age, presented himself to the recruiting officer and was ac- 
cepted as a soldier for the Union. He served in the Indiana Volunteers 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 249 

and valiantly performed his duty through the entire war, at the close of 
which he received his honorable discharge which should ever be retained 
as a priceless heirloom by his descendants. After laying aside the im- 
plements of war, with which he had become familiar through four long 
years of marching and fighting, he returned to his native state, where he 
has since been engaged in farming. 

The subject of this review grew up under the protective care of kind 
parents and in the atmosphere of the farm — the best place in the world for 
the development of an American boy. He received his education in the 
country schools and early began farming on his own account, increasing 
his acreage as his financial resources permitted until he is now one of the 
prosperous farmers of the county, although he has only reached middle life. 

On February 29, 1892, Mr. Kamp was united in marriage to Miss 
Emeline Stroud, and three children have been born of this union: Helen, 
King and Susie. Mr. Kamp in his religious faith is identified with the 
Baptist church, of which he is a consistent member. He is a supporter of 
the republican party but has not devoted much time to politics, as his in- 
terests have been largely absorbed in his own private affairs. He has at- 
tained unusual success in his chosen vocation by diligence and close appli- 
cation, although good judgment has assisted in a very important degree, 
as without this faculty continued advancement in any calling would not be 
possible. His youthful dreams have been more than realized and in their 
fulfillment we see the reward of well directed energy. 



LAWRENCE B. FINKE. 

The name of Finke has come to be recognized as a synonym for marked 
business enterprise and unusual activity in commercial circles in Evansville. 
While a young man, having but just completed his third decade, Lawrence 
B. Finke is now widely known as secretary and treasurer of the Finke 
Furniture Company. He was born in Huntingburg, Indiana, September 
6, 1880, and is a son of William H. and Mary C. Finke, the former a na- 
tive of Cincinnati, Ohio. While spending his youthful days in his par- 
ents' home Lawrence B. Finke entered the public schools of his native 
city and mastered the lessons taught in the consecutive grades until six- 
teen years of age. 

He then came to Evansville and accepted the position of solicitor for 
the Lockyear Business College, in which connection he traveled through 
Indiana and Kentucky for two years. He afterward became division super- 
intendent for the International Correspondence School of Scranton, Penn- 
sylvania, and for three years of that time was also solicitor for the School. 
Five years brought him to his present connection with his brother, Charles 
E. Finke, who in that year established at No. 623, Main street, a store con- 



250 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

taining a general line of household goods of which Lawrence B. Finke was 
made manager. Admitted to a partnership with his brother under the 
style of C. E. & L. B. Finke, they continued the business under that organ- 
ization until 1907, when the Finke Furniture Company was incorporated 
with the elder brother as president and the younger brother as secretary 
and treasurer. This ,is a successful and growing enterprise and the pro- 
gressive business methods of the partners well entitle them to the pros- 
perity which they are enjoying. 

Mr. Finke exercises his right of franchise in support of the men and 
measures of the republican party, but the honors and emoluments of 
public office have had no attraction for him. He belongs to the Modern 
Woodmen Camp of Evansville and is a prominent and active worker in 
the Cenral Methodist Episcopal church, serving for five years as its Sun- 
day school superintendent. His attractive home life had its beginning in 
his marriage in this city on the i6th of November, 1901, to Miss Olive 
I. Daum. Unto them have been bom two children, Harold, five years of 
age, and Mildred, in her first year. Mr. Finke is yet a young man with 
probably the greater part of his life before him and the salient character- 
istics which he has already displayed argue well for larger success in the 
future. 



JOHN M. FUNKE. 

Various corporate interests have felt the stimulus of the business en- 
terprise and progressive methods of John M. Funke, and he is now asso- 
ciated with a number of the most important industrial, financial and 
commercial concerns of this part of the state. It is true that at the outset 
of his career he entered upon a business already established, but he did 
not rely upon parental influence to secure him promotion and in enlarging 
and controlling the industry of which he is now one of the owners he has 
given proof of his business sagacity, determination and honorable methods. 

Evansville is proud to number Mr. Funke among her native sons. He 
was born here, July 14, 1865, a son of Ferdinand and Mary Ann (Kuntz) 
Funke, early German residents of Evansville, who are mentioned elsewhere 
in this volume. He attended the parochial school conducted in connection 
with the Trinity Catholic church under Professor Drewes and afterward 
became a student in the commercial college of Evansville, thus being 
trained for the active duties of a business life. At the age of seventeen 
he became identified with the paper manufacturing business which had 
been established by his father. He continued to work with his father and. 
to familiarize himself with every department of the business until 1893, 
when the father retired and John M. Funke and his brothers took charge 
of the plant. Following the father's death in 1895 the business was re- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 253 

organized on a copartnership basis in January, 1896, under the firm name 
of Ferdinand Funke Sons. They have a well equipped paper mill, sup- 
plied with the latest improved machinery in their line, and the factory is 
now turning out an extensixe product and has a desirable reputation for 
the excellence of the output. 

Into other business lines Mr. Funke has also extended his efforts, for 
he is a man of resourceful ability and his activity and ambition have sought 
scope in other fields. In 1904 he became the organizer of the Mount 
Vernon Straw Board Company of Mount Vernon, Indiana, of which he 
is the president and treasurer, with himself and brothers as the principal 
stockholders. He is also vice president of the Evansville & Mount Vernon 
Electric Railway and a director of the Evansville Railways Company. In 
banking circles he is well known as the president of the Commercial Bank 
of Evansville, to which position he was elected on its organization in 1906, 
and as a director of the Citizens Bank of Newburg, Indiana. 

On the I2th of August, 1890, in Evansville, Mr. Funke was married 
to Miss Sarah Ann Margaret La Rue, a daughter of H. P. and Ann 
(Chambers) La Rue, the former a native of Virginia and the latter of At- 
tica, Indiana. They removed to Evansville from Attica. Mr. and Mrs. 
Funke are the parents of twelve children, five sons and seven daughters: 
John F., nineteen years of age; Henry C, seventeen years of age; Marie, 
fifteen; Cornelius, fourteen; Ursula, thirteen; Catharine, twelve; Paul, 
eleven; Laura, nine; Margaret, seven; Rudolph, six; Josephine, four; and 
Alberta, one. 

The family are communicants of the Catholic church and Mr. Funke 
is a member of the German Catholic Federated Society, the Catholic 
Knights of America, which he has represented as state delegate to the 
national convention several times, the Knights of Columbus and the Knights 
of St. John. He is also identified with the Benevolent and Protective Order 
of Elks, and his military record covered service as first lieutenant in Com- 
pany G, of the Indiana Legion, under Colonel Ewing. His interests and 
activities are sufficiently varied to make him a well balanced man and at 
the same time he occupies a prominent position in business circles, his 
native powers and well developed talents being evidenced in his initiative 
spirit and capable management. 



BAXTER BEGLEY, M. D. 

Among the prosperous and fortunate citizens of Vanderburg county, 
who apparently possesses the ability to make a success of anything he 
might undertake, is Dr. Baxter Begley. He was bom in Henderson county, 
Kentucky, February 10, 1856, and is a son of John and Frances (Hughes) 
Begley, the former of whom was a native of Ireland and the latter of 



254 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Kentucky. John Begley arrived in America in quest of a home under the 
favoring conditions of a free government, in 1849, and located in Hender- 
son county, Kentucky, where he bought tvk'o hundred acres of land which 
he at once began with great care to clear and improve. Here he erected 
a comfortable dwelling and other buildings of convenience in operating 
the farm and continued successfully until 1868 when he sold out and re- 
moved to Evansville, Indiana. When the Evansville Foundry Association 
was formed Mr. Begley became a stockholder and went upon the road as 
a traveling salesman, proving quite successful in this line of business, as 
in anything else he undertook. In 1882 he disposed of his interests in the 
foundry and entered the tobacco business at Cairo, Kentucky, where he 
was associated with his son-in-law for two years. At the end of this time 
he returned to Evansville and formed a partnership with Mr. Healey, as 
Begley & Healey, and bought out a brass foundry which was then in oper- 
ation, continuing at the head of the firm until his death, which occurred 
in November, 1886. He was a man of sound judgment and good business 
ability and always made many friends wherever he was known. Mrs. 
Begley has survived her husband and at the age of seventy-nine years is 
still in fair possession of her faculties, making her home with the subject 
of this review. 

Baxter Begley was reared in Evansville where he made good use of 
the advantages of education presented by the public schools, r.emaining 
at the parental home until he was twenty years of age. He matriculated 
in the Evansville Medical College and was graduated from that institution 
with the degree of M. D. in 1876. He located at Inglefield, Indiana, the 
same year and entered upon the practice of his profession in which he 
has ever since been actively engaged and in which he has been eminently 
successful. Preferring the country to city life, he lives upon a well im- 
proved farm of fifty-three acres and judging by the appearance of the 
farm he is as successful in the pursuit of agriculture as he has been in the 
practice of the healing art. He is a member of the American Medical 
Society, the Indiana State Medical Society, the Vanderburg County Med- 
ical Society, and the Ohio Valley Medical Association. Politically he is 
identified with the democratic party although, as a man of liberal tenden- 
cies, he recognizes merit even though it bear the stamp of the opposing 
party. He is a member of the board of directors of the Commercial Bank 
of Evansville and is secretary and treasurer of the Inglefield Milling Com- 
pany. He is a stockholder of the Inglefield Creamery Company and holds 
membership in the Elks lodge of Evansville and the Knights of Honor, 
and in every movement that seeks to advance the interests of the com- 
munity he is always to be found. 

In 1877 Dr. Begley was united in marriage to Miss Susan Ingle, a 
daughter of Joseph and Nancy Ingle, both of whom were born in Indiana. 
The union has been blessed by the arrival of four children: Mary, now 
the wife of Dr. Welbom, of Evansville; Helen, who is married and lives 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 255 

in Corydon, Kentucky; Cora, who is married and lives in the Panama 
Canal zone; and John, who died in 1886. Mrs. Begley, who was a mem- 
ber of the Methodist church and a true companion and helpmate to her 
husband during all the years of her married life, passed away in 1901. 

Dr. Begley, the possessor of a fine home and commanding the respect 
of his fellowmen, has indeed much that makes life desirable. He is an 
independent gentleman of broad outlook and is always one of the first in 
the neighborhood to extend a helping hand to those less fortunate than 
himself. It is this type of men that reflect credit upon the state and assist 
most in advancing the permanent interests of society. 



GUSTAV A. NONWEILER. 

It is a noticeable fact that young men are coming forward in important 
lines of business and occupy places of honor and responsibility that in times 
past were held almost exclusively by older heads. The change is accounted 
for in many instances by the improved systems of education through which 
young men are early prepared for larger responsibilities. In other instances 
the sons have succeeded their fathers and are successfully administering 
enterprises which are firmly established and have become permanent fac- 
tors in the business world. In the latter class belongs Gustav A. Non- 
weiler, head of the Evansville Furniture Company, one of the well known 
manufacturing enterprises of this city. 

A native of Evansville, Mr. Nonweiler was born August 27, 1872, and 
is a son of Philip and Bertha Nonweiler. His father was born at Kirn, 
Germany, February 11, 1840; was educated in the fatherland; and came 
to America in response to the call that has induced thousands of the most 
active and promising sons of Germany to seek greater freedom and larger 
opportunity under the stars and stripes. He arrived at Evansville in i860, 
just before the outbreak of the great rebellion, and found employment 
as clerk in the Stockfleth grocery. There he continued until after the call 
for soldiers to fight for the Union in 1861. He was made of good fight- 
ing stock and did not hesitate when his adopted country was in peril. He 
enlisted in the First Indiana Battery and served during the war without 
once asking for leave of absence from a post which he regarded as a 
post of duty, not to be relinquished until the enemy had been conquered. 
His faithfulness received recognition and he was advanced until he be- 
came first lieutenant of the battery. 

Returning to Evansville, Lieutenant Nonweiler, who three years before 
was an untried German boy, starting out bravely to meet the world with 
all its temptations and difficulties, was now a soldier, tried and true. He 
had performed his part in establishing the perpetuity of the republic and 



256 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

the freedom of men in the greatest and fiercest conflict the world has ever 
known. Like tens of thousands of patriotic citizens, he laid aside the trap- 
pings of war and began without delay to cultivate the arts of peace with 
the same earnestness he had displayed as a soldier. He first served as 
bookkeeper for Keller & White, druggists, and then engaged for several 
years in the same capacity with the Roelker Stove Works. He next en- 
tered the employ of the Blount Plow Works, continuing as bookkeeper 
and as manager until 1869. Having shown business capacity beyond the 
ordinary, Mr. Nonweiler was asked to identify himself with the Evans- 
ville Furniture Company. He served as secretary and manager until 1872 
and was then elected president, continuing in that position until his death 
while visiting his old home in Germany in 1908. Mr. Nonweiler was a 
brave soldier, an energetic and capable business man and a citizen of which 
any municipality or state might justly be proud. It is an inspiration and 
a pleasure to know of the history of his life. 

Gustav A. Nonweiler was educated in the public and high schools of 
Evansville and after graduating from the latter at sixteen years of age he 
attended Curnicks Business College for one year. He then acted as 
stenographer for the F. W. Cook Brewing Company for a short time and 
for one and a half years was stenographer and weigher for the commis- 
sion house of William Fields. For a year he was bookkeeper for the Ashby 
Wharf Boat Company, and at the end of this period, having now gained 
much practical knowledge of various lines of business, he was made fore- 
man of the packing room of the Evansville Furniture Company, of which 
his father was president. He advanced through various departments as 
shipping clerk, traveling man, stenographer in the office and assistant to 
his father and in 1906 was elected vice president. In 1907 he had full 
charge of the factory and after the death of his father was made president 
of the company. Having had thorough experience in all details of the 
business, from the purchase of the raw materials to the final disposition 
of the finished product, he was prepared to discharge any responsibility that 
might appear. This he has done and the business of the company has 
shown a gratifying increase. The company manufactures a line of cham- 
ber suites, chiffoniers and odd dressers that meet with general acceptance 
from the trade. 

Mr. Nonweiler was united in marriage August 3, 1898, to Miss Frieda 
M. Frick, a daughter of Rev. J. Frick, formerly pastor of Zion church, 
Evansville. They have two children. Gustav P., now ten years of age ; and 
Karl H., seven years of age. 

Mr. Nonweiler is affiliated with the republican party and is a member 
of St. John's Evangelical church. He is an active worker in fraternity 
circles as is evidenced by membership in Lessing Lodge, No. 464, A. F. & 
A. M. ; and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. He is also 
a member of a number of clubs and social organizations, among which 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 257 

are the Country Club, the Crescent Club, the Turn Verein, Liederkranz, 
the Travelers Protective Association and the Indiana Commercial Men's 
Association. He finds recreation in golf and the automobile and is known 
among his friends as a genial and affable gentleman, who, like his father, 
endeavors to perform his part in anything he undertakes. 



CHARLES F. ARTES. 



The fact to which the casual observer has perhaps given little atten- 
tion is that the Teutonic element has been an important one in the up- 
building and progress of the new world. Many are the native sons of 
Germany who have found available opportunities along business lines and 
in their improvement have contributed substantially to the commercial 
development of given communities as well as to individual success. To 
this class belongs Charles F. Artes, who for forty-six years has been con- 
nected with the jewelry trade in Evansville and throughout the entire 
period has maintained an unassailable reputation for the integrity as well 
as the progressiveness of his business methods. 

He was bom in Limbach, Saxe-Meiningen, Germany, March 31, 1847, 
a son of professor Casper F. and Catherine (Bierschenk) Artes. The 
father was born March 29, 1816, and was liberally educated in both literature 
and art. The development of his musical talents gained him high place 
in musical circles. His sympathies were with the revolutionists in the war 
in Germany in 1848-49 and, like many others who participated in that 
uprising, he sought a home in America when it was found that the liberties 
which they desired were to be denied them in the fatherland. He emigrated 
to the new world in 185 1 and, locating in Henderson, Kentucky, became a 
teacher in a female academy there. A few years later he was appointed 
organist in St. Paul's church of Henderson and filled the position con- 
tinuously for thirty years, being in attendance each Sunday during that 
period. He ever remained a most interested scholar in the field of music 
and attained a degree of proficiency that placed' him among the masters in 
his part of the country. His last days were spent in Evansville, where he 
died in November, 1886. His wife was born in Germany, in 1821. 

Charles F. Artes, brought to America at the age of four years, spent 
his boyhood in Henderson, Kentucky, and acquired his education in the 
public schools. He has been a resident of Evansville since 1864, coming 
to this city wheK a youth of seventeen years. He entered into active con- 
nection with the jewelry business and has continued in this line to the pres- 
ent time, gaining distinction in his chosen field. By careful study of the 
wants of his trade and his rare taste in the selection of goods he has won 
a reputation that is most enviable. His establishment would be a credit 



258 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

to a city of much larger size and the integrity of his methods constitutes 
and example that might well be followed by any. 

Mr. Artes seems to have inherited the intellectual strength of his father 
and a fondness for research. His attention, however, has been directed 
into other than musical fields. He has devoted much time to archeological 
research and he has a valuable collection of antiques and curiosities. His 
reading, research and investigation have been of a most broad character, 
covering the field of literature and art. 

On the 22d of September, 1874, Mr. Artes was married, in Evansville, 
to Miss Medora Davidson, a native of this city and a daughter of William 
Davidson, one of the early residents here. They have become the parents 
of three sons, namely : William Artes, Charles Artes, Jr., and Oliver Artes. 

The family are members of St. Paul's Episcopal church, Mr. Artes be- 
coming one of the founders of Holy Innocents church, in the work of which 
he has taken a most helpful and active part. He is well known in Masonic 
circles, holding membership with the lodge, chapter and commandery. 
While in business he has made for himself a creditable position, he has 
never allowed his activities to center upon commercial pursuits to the 
exclusion of other interests and is today regarded as one of Evansville's 
citizens of worth — a broad-minded, cultured gentleman, with whom as- 
sociation means expansion and elevation. 



HOLT-BRANDON ICE & COLD STORAGE COMPANY. 

The Holt-Brandon Ice & Cold Storage Company originated with M. C. 
Brandon, who started in 1886 with three or four teams hauling coal from 
the Diamond coal mines and in 1888 he established an office on Main 
street in this city. During the summer of the same year he began ship- 
ping lake ice from Lake Maxincuckee, Indiana, and selling it in Evans- 
ville. In 1891 he established an office at No. 414 North Eighth street, con- 
tinuing until October, 1894, when ground was broken for the erection of 
a plant in this city for the manufacture of ice. A large and increasing 
business having been developed and the time for further extension having 
arrived, the Holt-Brandon Ice & Cold Storage Company was incorporated 
in 1895 with Sterling R. Holt, of Indianapodis, as president, and M. C. 
Brandon as secretary and treasurer. The company began the manufacture 
of ice and also entered upon a general cold storage business. The original 
ice machine had a capacity of twenty-five tons per day, but six or seven 
years ago the machine was increased to forty tons per day and the ice 
storage capacity to three thousand tons. Last year, owing to additional 
demands, on account of the growing population and the increasing popu- 
larity of the system, the ice storage capacity was brought up to four thou- 
sand tons and another ice machine was installed by which the output 




HARRY LOEWENTHAL 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 261 

is more than doubled and the company is now able to meet all calls from 
whatever quarter. 

In 1901 Mr. Holt sold his interest in the business to M. C. Brandon 
and Harry Loewenthal, Mr. Brandon becoming president and treasurer and 
Mr. Loewenthal secretary and manager of the company, in which positions 
they remained until the death of Mr. Brandon, March 11, 1909. Mr. Loew- 
enthal is now the president and D. A. Jansen, who became associated with 
Mr. Brandon in the business in February, 1888, is secretary and treasurer. 
The principal object of the company is to supply the local trade and large 
shipments are also made to points in southern Indiana, northern Kentucky 
and southern Illinois. The company gives employment to forty-five or 
fifty persons, owns a complete outfit of wagons and teams and is thor- 
oughly up-to-date in everything pertaining to the ice and cold storage 
business. 

Mr. Jansen is a native of Evansville and was educated in the public 
schools. He is thoroughly acquainted with the business to which he has 
devoted more than twenty years and in which he has exhibited qualifica- 
tions of a high order, winning the confidence and respect of his business 
associates. In 1908 he was happily married with Miss Lillian Gleich- 
man and one child, Amy, is the result of the union. 

Mr. Loewenthal was born at Leavenworth, Kansas, in 1863. He came 
to Evansville in 1880 and was for a number of years identified with the 
manufacture of clothing in this city. He became a member of the Holt- 
Brandon Ice & Cold Storage Company in 1901 and has since devoted his 
attention with remarkable success to this business. He is a son of Loew- 
enthal, for many years well known as a dry-goods merchant, who retired 
from active life three years before his death, which occurred December 
8, 1908. In 1895, at Evansville, Harry Loewenthal was united in marriage 
to Miss Julia Bitterman. They have four children: Edwin, Jack, Philip 
and Arthur. Mr. Loewenthal occupies an honorable position in social and 
business circles and is an active member of the Benevolent and Protective 
Order of Elks of the city. 



EDWARD MAHRENHOLZ. 

Among the rising young farmers of Vanderburg county is Edward 
Mahrenholz, who lives upon a rented farm of thirty-three acres and by 
his energy and wise management has gained the confidence and good will 
of his neighbors. He was born and reared in this county and is a descend- 
ant of worthy German ancestry, whose characteristics of aspiration, per- 
severance and thrift he exemplifies in his life and action. He first saw the 
light of day in Perry township, October 21, 1884, and is a son of Christian 
Mahrenholz. The father came from Germany in the '60s and located in 



262 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Vanderburg county, which even then was a promising farming region but 
has since been developed on a large scale by many intelligent and competent 
agriculturists. 

The subject of our review was educated in the district schools and im- 
mediately upon laying his books aside directed his undivided attention to 
the farm. He has from the beginning of his active career always taken 
the greatest interest in his work and is now regarded as one of the most 
competent farmers of his age in this region. That he has been successful 
is indicated by the position he occupies in the estimation of the community. 

On September 19, 1906, Mr. Mahrenholz was united in marriag^e to Miss 
Lida Miller. Three children have blessed the union of Mr. and Mrs. 
Mahrenholz: Elsie, now three years of age; Rudolph, two years of age; 
and a third addition to the household, now eight months old. 

Mr. and Mrs. Mahrenholz are members of the German Lutheran church 
and represent a harmonious family, their home being the abode of happi- 
ness which is known only as evidence of duty performed. Mr. Mahrenholz 
is affiliated politically with the republican party, believing this party to be 
the one that best subserves the farming interests. In his life he is governed 
by principles of industry and perseverance that seldom fail of their re- 
ward and the indications are that each year will witness new victories and 
he will attain the independence his father sought when he left the old world 
and faced an untried destiny under the stars and stripes of the American 
republic. 



CHARLES E. FINKE. 



Charles E. Finke, president of the Finke Furniture Company, and thus 
prominent in the commercial circles of Evansville, has worked his way 
steadily upward to the creditable position which he now fills. His start 
in business life was a most humble one but merit has secured his advance- 
ment until he is now at the head of a profitable and growing business. He 
is numbered among Indiana's native sons, his birth having occurred in 
Boonville, Sepember 13, 1867, his parents being WiUiam and Mary Finke. 
The father was bom in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1840, and after coming to In- 
diana lived in Boonville, Huntingburg and other parts of the state. 

Charles E. Finke attended the public schools of Huntingburg until fif- 
teen years of age when he became a wage earner in a brickyard where he 
was employed for three years. On the expiration of that period he became 
connected with the restaurant business and for three years was a represen- 
tative for the Southern News restaurant. Removing to Evansville, he 
spent six months in canvassing for a feather cleaner concern, at the end 
of which time he accepted the position of collector with the firm of Venne- 
man & Rhodes, prominent representatives of the furniture trade of the 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 263 

city, with whom he was connected for eleven years. At one time he was 
manager of the Union Furniture Company, a branch of the business of 
Venneman & Rhodes, but the ambitious man is seldom content to remain 
in the service of others. He seeks an independent field that he may direct 
his own interests and secure the profits of his own labors. To this end Mr. 
Finke rented a small storeroom at Nos. 320-322 North Fourth street, and 
began the sale of new and second hand furniture. Although he started the 
business on a small scale, his trade steadily increased and later justified 
the establishment of another store at No. 623 Main street. He placed his 
brother in the latter establishment as manager and made him a partner in 
the business. In 1907 the C. E. & L. B. Finke Furniture Company was 
organized, with the elder brother as president of the company and the 
younger brother as secretary and treasurer. Two stores are now conducted 
and the business is extensive and profitable. Charles E. Finke also bought 
out Joseph Muskawitz and reorganized the business under the name of the 
Handy Furniture Company, of which he is sole proprietor, handling a 
genera] line of new and second hand household goods and furnishings. 

Mr. Finke was married in Evansville on the i6th of November, 1893, 
to Miss Amelia K. Herth, and unto them have been bom three children, 
Ralph, Albert and Florence, now fifteen, nine and seven years of age re- 
spectively. The elder son is a high school pupil and the two younger 
children are also attending the public schools. Mr. Finke manifests justi- 
fiable pride in his little family and his home is a hospitable one whose good 
cheer is greatly enjoyed by the many friends that he and his wife have won 
during their residence here. Mr. Finke gives his political support to the 
republican party and fraternally is connected with the Royal Arcanum and 
the Modem Woodmen of America. He is an earnest and faithful member 
of the German Methodist church and is serving on the board of trustees 
of the Deaconess Hospital. His spirit of helpfulness is a manifestation of 
broad humanitarianism which prompts him to reach out in aid of all who 
need assistance. 



ALBERT J. SHAFER. 



An important line of business that has grown up in America as the 
population has gathered in the cities is truck farming. It is a business that 
requires close attention and no laggard can expect to accomplish any im- 
portant results as a truck farmer, because such a farm flourishes only when 
weeds are not in evidence, and its financial management requires a head who 
recognizes the value of a dollar and how to collect the same when the 
products of his toil pass from his hands. A successful truck farmer is one 
who is wide-awake, energetic and prompt and efficient in making deliveries 
of his products after he has given his promise to do so. It is readily to be 



264 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

seen that successful truck farming requires a man of good character and 
all-round effectiveness. Such a man is Albert J. Shafer, the owner of a 
flourishing truck farm of fourteen acres within convenient access of Evans- 
ville. 

He was bom in Vanderburg county in 1884, a son of John Shafer, who 
came to this county from Pennsylvania and located in Knight township. 
In the family were six children: John F., William C. ; Henry; Albert J.; 
Annie, at home with her mother ; and Carrie, now the wife of Henry Blun- 
ker, a well known concrete contractor of Evansville. 

Albert J. Shafer has all his life been identified with farming operations. 
He was educated in a country schoolhouse and as a boy became familiar 
with the work which has since occupied much of his attention. The farm 
which he owns gives evidence of thoughtful care and is conducted in such 
a way as to make him financially independent. 

In 1905 Mr. Shafer was united in marriage to Miss Adelia Hudson, 
the youngest daughter of Frank Hudson, of Evansville. Unto them has 
been bom one child, Aline Caroline. Mr. Shafer is identified with the 
republican party and he and his wife are both members of the Presbyterian 
church and continue liberally to its support. By industry and good judg- 
ment he has acquired his farm and in a comfortable home, provided with all 
the requirements of a well regulated household, he and his family enjoy the 
well merited results of their self-denial and toil. 



ABRAHAM S. FORD. 



Abraham S. Ford, general manager at Evansville for the St. Bernard 
Mining Company, was born in Pickaway county, Ohio, in November, 
1854, and is a son of Charles and Katharine Ford, the former a native of 
Ohio. At the usual age Abraham S. Ford entered the public schools and, 
mastering the studies in the successive grades, was promoted until he left 
the high school at the age of twenty years and became a factor in business 
circles. For a decade after completing his education he devoted his time 
and attention to general fanning, which he followed in the vicinity of 
Evansville, but beheving that he would find commercial pursuits more con- 
genial and profitable, he left the farm and took charge of the Evansville 
interests of the St. Bernard Mining Company, a corporation of Erlington, 
Kentucky, dealing in coal, coke and anthracite. He has entire charge of 
the business at this point and has succeeded in building up a trade of ex- 
tensive proportions. His energies are concentrated upon the development 
of the business with the result that his close application, industry and keen 
insight have secured for the company which he represents a large and 
growing trade in this section of the state. 




A. S. FORD 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 267 

Mr. Ford has been twice married, his first wife being Miss EUzabeth 
Laut, of Evansville, whom he married April 2, 1878, and who died Febru- 
ary 16, 1898. In 1901 he was united in marriage to Miss Fannie Kelsey. 
They are well known socially in this city and the hospitality of many of 
the best homes is freely accorded them. 

Mr. Ford belongs to the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, to 
the National Union and to the Supreme Court of Honor, and is loyal to 
the benevolent purposes and the fraternal principles which constitute the 
basic elements of these organizations. A review of the political situation 
and issues of the day has led him to give strong endorsement to the men 
and measures of the republican party and yet he does not seek office or 
desire political preferment for himself. He feels that his personal interests 
are best conserved through devotion to the business in which he is now 
engaged, and in which connection he has made a creditable name as a re- 
liable and enterprising business man of Evansville. 



GEORGE L. KRAUSS. 

A self-made man is usually defined as one who wins his way to a posi- 
tion of responsibility without assistance from others and who is the happy 
possessor of a spirit of fearlessness and independence that would enable 
him to win anywhere in anything he should undertake. He must be brave, 
strong hearted and persevering and he must have the good sense to learn 
even from his own mistakes. A man who easily becomes discouraged can 
never become a self-made man ; he will drift with the tide and will always 
occupy a subordinate position. It is not so with George L. Krauss, the 
subject of this review. He inherited characteristics that were almost cer- 
tain in the course of time to bring him to the front in some line of busi- 
ness. He comes of vigorous Teutonic stock that is not easily cast down and 
is not afraid to fight and even to die for what it believes to be its rights. 

Mr. Krauss was bom in Edenheim, Germany, February 4, 1882, a son 
of George and Margaret Krauss, both natives of Germany. The father, 
came to America many years before our subject was born, in i860, and 
soon after his arrival on the shores of the western continent the great Re- 
bellion threw a shadow over the entire land and the armies gathered into 
their ranks tens of thousands of brave young men who willingly offered 
their lives for a cause which they believed to be right. Among this number 
was George Krauss. He served throughout the entire war as a faithful 
and true defender of the Union and after receiving an honorable discharge 
in 1865 he returned to his native country. This is one of the remarkable 
instances in which a man who was at that time not a citizen of the United 
States risked his life to uphold the stars and stripes. In his native land 
Mr. Krauss was married and engaged in the butcher business until 1884, 



268 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

whai for a second time he came to America, bringing with him his wife and 
children, having decided here to take up his permanent abode. He located 
at Evansville, where he pursued the trade that he had learned in the old 
country and where he departed this life in March, 1897. He was an in- 
dustrious, worthy and useful citizen and in all respects a man who deserved 
the friendshinp and confidence of every lover of liberty. 

George L. Krauss attended the public schools of Evansville until he 
was eleven years of age and, his assistance then being necessary for the 
support of the family, he entered the employ of the Indiana Egg Case Com- 
pany as driver, continuing for one year. Although very young for such a 
position, he acquitted himself creditably. His next employment was with 
W. E. Vickery, the grocer, where he continued for some years, after which 
he was identified for seven years with the saloon business. However, he 
was not a man to be satisfied with any small responsibility and in 1909 he 
acquired the ownership of the Imperial Laundry, which he has conducted 
very successfully. He gives employment to twenty-five persons and is 
constantly extending the field of his operations, which up to the present 
time has been restricted to bundle and family work. 

On August I, 1906, Mr. Krauss was united in marriage to Miss Ida L. 
Vogt, and two children have blessed the union: George Benjamin, now 
three years of age ; and Ralph William, one and one-half years of age. Mr. 
Krauss is an active worker in social organizations and holds membership 
in the Eagles, the Owls, the Ranchmen and the Knights of Fidelity. He 
votes the republican ticket but his inclinations lie in the direction of busi- 
ness rather than politics. He stands well among his business associates; 
has always met his obligations ; and is known as "a man of his word." Into 
his new line of business he has infused an energy that gives large promise 
of gratifying financial returns. 



ALEXANDER CRAWFORD. 

A man who has been at the head of the same line of business in the 
same community for thirty-eight years and has not only seen his business 
grow and flourish but has retained the respect of his associates and of 
citizens generally has in an important degree attained success in life. By 
success we do not mean to accentuate the financial phase of the term, for 
it is entirely true that a man may attain great success and not be worth a 
dollar. True success is the development of an upright character. This is 
probably the greatest work in which any human being can engage and in 
this respect the well known citizen of Evansville, whose name stands at the 
head of this review is by no means lacking. He is recognized as a stanch 
and a reliable man, whose virtues coming in contact with the world have 
not tarnished and whose word is always as good as his bond. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 269 

Alexander Crawford is of Scotch ancestry and inherited from a long line 
of worthy members of the family the sturdy characteristics of the race. He 
was born at Otter Ferry, Argyllshire, Scotland, in 1840. In his home school 
he received the rudiments of an education which he has since greatly ex- 
tended by reading and observation, and in 1869, a tthe age of twenty-nine 
years, he bade farewell to his native land and started out to seek his for- 
tune in America. He first settled in Cincinnati, Ohio, where for three years 
he worked at the plumber's trade. Not entirely satisfied with his surround- 
ings as a place for beginning business on his own account, he came to 
Evansville in 1872 and opened with Charles Newlands a plumbing and gas 
fitting establishment, with which he has ever since been identified. Four 
years later he purchased the interest of Mr. Newlands and admitted a 
brother, Peter, as a partner. Here he has continued during all the years 
that have elapsed and by industry and careful attention to the details of his 
business the firm has acquired a reputation second to no other in the same 
line in Evansville. 

In 1897 Mr. Crawford was happily united in marriage to Miss Mary 
Craig, a daughter of Alexander Craig, who came to Evansville from Scot- 
land. One daughter has been born to the union, Mary R., who is residing 
with her parents. Mr. Crawford has always adhered to the religious belief 
of his forefathers and is an active and efiScient member of the Walnut Street 
Presbyterian church. The fraternal principles of the Masonic order have 
met from him a hearty response and he now holds membership in Reed 
Lodge, A. F. & A. M., of this city, and for several years filled the honorable 
position of master of Evansville lodge. As is indicated by this review, 
Mr. Crawford is a man of sturdy virtues, who is highly honored by his 
friends and acquaintances and respected by the entire community. 



JOSEPH HAAS. 



Some men are bom for success and some apparently are intended by 
nature to be followers. The secret of this inequality has never been clearly 
explained but all observation shows that it exists. An illustration of the 
class first mentioned is presented in the subject of this review. For twelve 
years past Joseph Haas has been engaged in the grocery business in Evans- 
ville and by his friends he is given the unique distinction of being the 
wealthiest self-made man of his age in this city. 

Mr. Haas is a native of Cincinnati, bom in 1875, and is a son of Frank 
Haas. He came with his parents to this city when he was three years of age. 
Here his father engaged in the saloon business at the corner of Twelfth 
avenue and Franklin street, moving at the end of three years to No. 1204 
Main street. Later he sold out and became local representative of the In- 
ternational Harvester Company, in which position he remained until his 



270 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

death, which occurred in September, 1904. Mrs. Haas is still living and 
resides in this city. Four children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Haas ; Mamie, 
now the wife of Charles Seihler, postmaster of Evansville; DoUie, the wife 
of Captain Jeff. Williams ; Frank, secretary of the Evansville Gas & Electric 
Company; and Joseph, of this review. 

Joseph Haas received his education in the public schools and in a business 
college. At a very early age he gained his first knowledge of commercial 
affairs by acting as carrier for newspapers and he continued faithfully at 
this work for six years, until he was seventeen years of age, carefully laying 
aside his slender income until it was large enough to become the foundation 
of his present fortune. As a boy he was wide-awake, active and energetic 
and these desirable characteristics he has always retained. At the age of 
sixteen he entered the employ of the Evansville & Terre Haute Railway 
Company and so continued for seven years. It was in 1898 that he became 
identified with the grocery business, his first investment in this line being at 
the corner of Governor and Olive streets. Here he developed a highly 
lucrative trade and in 1904 acquired possession of his present location on 
Main street. Three years later he bought a store which he is now operating 
on Fourth street and in 1908 became the owner of a third store at No. 616 
Main street. As the result of his attention to the grocery business he is 
now at the head of three flourishing stores. He also owns two well im- 
proved farms in Vanderburg county, is sole proprietor of the Utility Ma- 
chine Shops and is the owner of four residences in this city. He is a stock- 
holder in the steamer Francis and the owner of the pleasure barge Indiana. 

In religious affiliations he is connected with St. Mary's Catholic church 
and although he is identified with so many business enterprises, he finds time 
to cultivate the social amenities and to devote attention to outdoor recrea- 
tions of which he is very fond. On account of his remarkable administra- 
tive ability Mr. Haas stands very high in the best business circles and in the 
community, where his entire life since infancy has been passed, he is held 
in general esteem. 



JOHN C. STASER. 



Among the prosperous farmers of Scott township, \^anderburg county, 
may be named John C. Staser, who was born in the town where he now 
lives November 8, 1857. He is a son of John C. and Margaret (Clinton) 
Staser, the former a native of Germany and the latter of the state of Vir- 
ginia. John C. Staser, Sr., at the age of seven years came to America with 
his parents, who were of the sturdy, independent Teutonic stock that always 
thrives best in the face of difficulties, locating in Center township, Vander- 
burg county. The family moved to Scott township in 1830 and entered 
government land of which a vast acreage in this and adjoining states was 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 271 

then available at a very small cost. However, the land required to be 
cleared" and improved and this called for years of earnest application. In the 
meantime the father of the family, being a man of scholarly attainments, 
was admitted to the bar and was a practitioner in the courts of the state 
until ten years before his death, which occurred in March, 1886, his wife 
having departed this life twenty years previous, in 1866. Mr. Staser proved 
to be a successful financier and at the time of his decease was the owner of 
a beautiful farm of one thousand acres in one of the best farming regions 
of the state. This farm he conducted so as to provide gratifying returns. 

The subject of this review received his preliminary education in the dis- 
trict schools, later becoming a student in the public schools of Evansville. 
He remained with his parents always and upon the departure of his father 
came into possession of the beautiful homestead which he has still further 
improved by the construction of buildings, fences and all other accessories 
which brings the farm up-to-date and make it a most desirable place of resi- 
dence. The home place contains one hundred and twenty-seven acres and 
here he keeps forty head of cattle and forty head of deer. 

On October 19, 1885, Mr. Staser was united in marriage to Miss Mar- 
garet Major, a daughter of John and Anna (McDowell) Major, who came 
to this country from Ireland. Mr. Staser is identified with the democratic 
party and is one of those solid men whose word is considered as good as his 
bond and who can always be depended upon to do as he says. 



WILLIAM J. ELLIOTT. 

William J. Elliott, deceased, for many years a grocer in Evansville and 
later prominently identified with the show business, was born in New York, 
October 13, 1853. He was the son of Anger Livingston Elliott, who came 
to Warrick country, Indiana, during the Civil war and later removed to 
Evansville, where he followed the carpenter's trade and where his death 
occurred. 

The education of William J. Elliott was principally that which is gained 
in the school of experience. He was early thrown upon his own resources 
and for a number of years operated on the Ohio river, where he became 
mate on a steamer and held other responsible positions. The railroads, 
however, interfered seriously with the river traffic and Mr. Elliott located 
in Evansville and engaged in the grocery business at the corner of Reade and 
Michigan streets. He attained a measure of success in his new vocation 
but he attracted the attention of the Walter L. Main Show Company and at 
their solicitation withdrew from his other interests and for fourteen years 
acted as privilege manager for the show company. In the course of time 
he traveled very extensively over the entire country and became a highly 
valued member of a large and growing organization. 



272 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In 1884 Mr. Elliott was united in marriage to Miss Eva Hausman, who 
is now living in Evansville and who came from Germany with hei" parents, 
locating in Posey county, Indiana, in 1865, and later at Blue Grass, where 
her father, Peter Hausman, was a prosperous farmer. There were no chil- 
dren bom to Mr. and Mrs. Elliott but they adopted a daughter, Esther, now 
Mrs. Robert Chambers, of this city. 

Mr. Elliott was a man of friendly and agreeable address and possessed 
more than ordinary business capacity. He made many acquaintances in 
various parts of the country in the course of his travels and he never allowed 
his energies to become so completely absorbed in the pursuit of money as 
to dry up the fountains of sympathy. Although he started out in life upon 
his own resources, he learned to utilize the opportunities that surrounded 
him and he became highly successful as a business manager, his employers 
placing the greatest confidence in his honesty and trained judgment. He 
was a member of a number of fraternal organizations, among which were 
the Knights of Pythias, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the 
Tribe of Ben Hur and the Eagles, the beneficent teachings of these orders 
having a perceptible effect upon his life. He died in Evansville February 9, 
1906, and is survived by his widow, who still resides at the family home. 



FREDERICK W. LAUENSTEIN. 

Castle Lauenstein, the ancestral home of the family, still stands at 
Grieszan, Germany, and the ancestral history can be traced back through 
three hundred years. Friedrich and Constanze Lauenstein, both natives of 
Germany, were for many years residents of Evansville, where the former 
engaged in newspaper publication almost to the time of his death, which 
occurred July 12, 1904. 

His son, Frederick W. Lauenstein, whose name introduces this re- 
view, was bom in Evansville, February 6, 1879, and, after attending the 
public schools of this city until about ten and a half years of age, entered 
the Educational Institute of St. Louis, where he continued his studies for 
six years. In 1896 he matriculated in the Indiana University at Bloom- 
ington, completing his course there in 1899. In his youthful days he was 
much interested in athletics, particularly in football and baseball. Turning 
his attention to the more serious duties of hfe on leaving school, he be- 
came identified with newspaper interests and in that field has worked his 
way steadily upward, starting in a humble position and advancing as merit 
has gained him promotion. His attention has been given almost entirely 
to newspaper work and as editor of the Demokrat he ranks now among the 
leading journalists of southern Indiana. Taking active part in formulat- 
ing the policy of the paper, he has kept it in touch with the most modern 
and progressive ideas of journalism, while as editor his writings have been 




F. W. LAUENSTEIX 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 275 

an influencing factor in molding public opinion by his intelligent and com- 
prehensive discussion of vital questions of the day. Into the field of busi- 
ness he has also extended his efforts, being interested financially in many 
enterprises. He is now a director' of the Citizens National Bank, also 
of the Tri-State Fair Association and vice president of the Evansville 
Suburban Land & Mining Company, all of which have profited by his 
keen business discernment and unfaltering enterprise. 

On the 5th of March, 1902, Mr. Lauenstein was married to Miss Eliza- 
beth Fares, a member of one of the oldest families of Evansville. They 
now have one daughter, Margaret Constanze. Mr. Lauenstein is a lead- 
ing spirit in German circles and is, moreover, a prominent and valued 
member of the Elks lodge, the Liederkranz Maennerchor, the Germania 
Maennerchor, the Concordia Singing Society, the Turners Society and the 
German Society. He likewise belongs to St. John's Evangelical church 
and for three and a half years was a member of the school board, serving 
from April, 1906, until January, 1910, as the youngest man ever a member 
of that body. His political allegiance is given to the democracy but above 
and beyond all partisanship is his deep interest in public affairs resulting 
in the championship of every measure and movement which he deems of 
interest to Evansville and her upbuilding. His life work has been char- 
acterized by an orderly progression. Starting out without any vaulting 
ambition to accomplish something especially great or famous, he has fol- 
lowed the lead of his position, doing as best he could everything that came 
to hand and seizing legitimate advantages as they have arisen. He has 
never hesitated to take a forward step when the way was open. Possess- 
ing ability and character that inspired confidence in others, the simple 
weight of his character and ability has carried him into important rela- 
tions with large interests. 



ANDREW JACKSON SIRKLE. 

The name of Sirkle has long figured on the pages of the history of 
Vanderburg county, for representatives of the family were among the first 
setlers in this part of the state and later generations have continued the 
work which they instituted in the development and upbuilding of this dis- 
trict. George Sirkle, the grandfather of Andrew J. Sirkle, was one of the 
first county commissioners of the county. He was also a soldier in the 
Indian wars under General Andrew Jackson. Andrew Sirkle, the father, 
was born September 26, 1824, devoted his life to farming and died on the 
9th of December, 1862. He was one of those who rescued Dr. Trafton, 
one of the first physicians of Evansville, from a flatboat, from which he 
took him in a canoe to the shore. For three days he remained in the Sirkle 
home and was then taken to Evansville. The family name indicates their 
German ancestry. 



276 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Andrew Jackson Sirkle is a native of Union township and throughout 
his entire Hfe has been connected with farming interests in this part of the 
state. That he has succeeded in his undertakings is indicated in the fact 
that he owns and has improved some six hundred acres of land. He is 
therefore one of the large landowners of the county and his methods of 
farming have at all times been practical and progressive, converting wild 
land into rich fields, from which he annually gathers substantial harvests. 
His life has been a diligent one and his record is written in the tangible 
terms of profit. 

On the 8th of June, 1866, Mr. Sirkle was married to Miss Catherine 
Elizabeth Dusner, of Union township, a daughter of Phillip Dusner, and 
unto them have been bom seven children : Amelia, Andrew Jackson, Lulu, 
William, Louise E., Frederick and Walter, all of whom are now married with 
the exception of two. The work instituted by his grandfather in pioneer 
days and later carried on by his father is now being continued by Andrew 
J. Sirkle, who, like his predecessors, has been faithful in the duties of citi- 
zenship and capable in his efforts to promote the general welfare. His in- 
dividual success indicates his business ability and keen foresight and his 
business affairs have always been transacted in terms of honor. 



WILLIAM SCHMIDT. 



When the names of the prosperous and successful farmers of Knight 
township are mentioned that of William Schmidt always occupies a promi- 
nent place. He has stanch Teutonic blood in his veins and inherited from his 
father a fearlessness and energy that are such prominent characteristics of 
the sons of Germany and their descendants wherever they may be found. 
Indeed, it is very doubtful whether the American republic would be such a 
great world power as it is today were it not for the strong arms and valiant 
hearts that ever since the establishment of the Union have sought here the 
blessings of freedom of thought and action which the old world does not 
afford. 

Mr. Schmidt is a true representative of this noble race. He was born 
in Knight township, Vanderburg county, August 6, 1862, and is the son of 
Jacob and Krausznthia Schmidt. His father was bom in Germany in 1824 
and upon arriving at maturity became a soldier of the German army, where 
he gained new ideas as to the world and, coming into contact with many 
other intelligent young men, he received an education which is not taught in 
the schools. He finally recognized that in the fatherland, where lines of 
caste are tightly drawn and a son is expected to follow in the footsteps of 
his ancestors, a young man, ambitious of advancement, has little oppor- 
tunity to improve his condition, so he decided to bid farewell to his native 
country and to make his permanent home in America. After arriving in 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 277 

this country he settled for a time in Pittsburg-, Pennsylvania, but not find- 
ing there the advantages that he expected, he came to Evansville and began 
in Vanderburg county as a farm laborer. As time passed he prospered and 
became the owner of sixty-two acres of land in Knight township, which he 
cleared and improved and upon which he dwelt until his death. In 1851 he 
was united in marriage to Miss Krausznthia Spitzmueller, a daughter of 
Charles Spitzmueller, a successful farmer of Knight township. Seven 
children were bom of this marriage : William, of this review ; Mary ; Jacob, 
now deceased; Lou; Kate; Fred; and George. 

William Schmidt as a lad received his first lessons in agriculture upon 
the home farm and in the neighboring schoolhouse was given a practical 
education in the fundamental principles of learning that has been of con- 
stant assistance to him in extending his sphere of knowledge and usefulness. 
As a young man he was active, energetic and efficient in his work and 
through years of faithful application he became the owner of a highly 
improved farm of one hundred and twenty-five acres in Knight township and 
also of a farm of eighty acres in Warrick county, this state. He conducts 
operations on both farms in accordance with methods that he has thoroughly 
tested and that have brought him liberal financial recompense. He is known 
as one of the respected members of the community who has fairly earned 
the honors that have come to him. 

In 1888 Mr. Schmidt was united in marriage to Miss Minnie Schluter, a 
daughter of Fred Schluter, who is engaged in farming in Warrick county. 
Of this union four children were born: Robert, Nora, Albert and Helen. 
Mr. Schmidt is happy in his work and in his home and friends. He is a man 
of sympathetic nature who readily responds to the calls of distress and 
assists in any worthy enterprise that tends to advance the interests of the 
neighborhood. 



HON. LOUIS H. LEGLER. 

The subject of this biography is a man well known in southern Indiana, 
having a state-wide acquaintance through affiliation with the leading politi- 
cal party and membership in the legislative assembly of the state. He has 
been a resident of Evansville for forty-four years and has occupied posi- 
tions of trust and responsibility in which he exhibited the sterling qualities 
of character than gain recommendation and commendation from all 
true citizens. His career has been along the path of patient and persistent 
effort and the reward is witnessed in the general esteem which is accorded 
even from members of political parties not in harmony with his own. In 
this country the lines in politics are not always sharply dravvm and the good 
citizen and close adherent to party principles are often synonymous. 



278 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Louis H. Legler is a native of Ontario, Canada, where he was bom on 
the 2ist of December, 1855. He is the sonof Dr. Henry T. Legler, who 
was bom in Saxony in 1819 and served as a surgeon in the Union army from 
1861 to 1866. Dr. Legler led a long and useful Hfe and died in California 
in 1908 at the advanced age of eighty-nine years. 

Louis H. Legler, the subject of this review, became a resident of 
Evansville in May, 1866. This was shortly after the close of the Civil war 
and the country had not yet become quieted after the great conflict in 
which the Ohio valley was the theater of many stiring scenes. As the 
years passed the country became more thickly populated and Evansville 
grew until it became one of the most important residence and business cen- 
ters in the state. Educated in the pubhc schools and later in a local com- 
mercial college, Louis H. Legler began his active business career at fifteen 
years of age as an employe in the dry-goods store of J. P. & S. A. Coolidge. 
Here he was inducted into the practical operations of the business, which 
he learned so thoroughly that in 1881 he was appointed deputy city treas- 
urer. In this position he continued until 1883. In the meantime, on ac- 
count of his knowledge as an accountant, he had been appointed deputy 
county auditor, discharging the duties of that position for eight years, from 
1886 to 1894. In the latter year he was elected auditor of Vanderburg 
county for a term of four years and received endorsement for the capa- 
bility, efficiency and loyalty which he displayed in his first term by reelec- 
tion in 1898 for a second term of four years, so that he remained as the 
incumbent in the office until 1902. His record was entirely satisfactory to 
the general public and won him high encomiums from those best qualified 
to speak with authority thereon. The discharge of his duties brought him 
into daily contact with the public and he made many friends who enthu- 
siastically rallied to his support as a candidate for the state legislature from 
Vanderburg county in 1905. Being elected to the lower house of that honor- 
able body, he conducted himself in such a way as to gain the general ap- 
proval of citizens of the county. He is now trastee of the Peoples Sav- 
ings Bank of Evansville and holds the responsible position of loan secre- 
tary of the institution. As a business man he is known as conscientious 
and conservative, the possessor of good judgment and thoroughly trust- 
worthy in everything he undertakes. 

Mr. Legler was united in marriage at Evansville, October 10, 1888, to 
Miss Marion Bonnel, a daughter of Warren Bonnel. Two sons and four 
daughters have been born as a result of the union. Genial in disposition 
and possessing many pleasing social characteristics, Mr. Legler is identified 
with the Masonic order, the Knights of Pythias, the Benevolent and Pro- 
tective Order of Elks and the Turn Verein. He is also a member of St. 
John's Evangelical church. 

Whether in business, political affairs, social or domestic relations, Mr. 
Legler has always eamed and retained the confidence and respect of those 
with whom he has been associated. He is deservedly popular and while he 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 279 

is never self-assertive and has often yielded his own preferences in defer- 
ence to others, he has never sacrificed principles. Fair in all his dealings, 
his upright character has never been questioned and one of the ambitions 
of his life is to retain what all honorable men aspire to gain — an un- 
blemished reputation. 



JAMES s. McDonald. 

James S. McDonald, a successful farmer of Armstrong township, who 
owns the farm on which he was born, first opened his eyes to the light of day 
August 26, 1862. He is a son of Samuel and Margaret (Calvert) McDonald, 
both of whom were also natives of Vanderburg county and identified with its 
farming interest during their entire lives. The father was born September 
17, 1837, and died at the age of fifty-nine on April 7, 1896. Mrs. McDonald, 
who was a kind mother and a worthy helpmeet to her husband, was born 
December 2, 1843, and departed this life at the old homestead, November 8, 
1897. The American ancestors of the McDonald family were of Scottish 
parentage and came to America in 1680 at the close of a war in their native 
country, which caused many of the sons of Scotland to seek a home in a 
strange land. Three brothers of the name settled in Virginia and it is be- 
lieved that their descendants participated in the Revolutionary war under 
Washington. Samuel McDonald, the grandfather of our subject, came 
west in a flatboat down the Ohio river and landed at Evansville in 1829. 
He was bom in the Blue Ridge mountains, Virginia, May 12, 1799, and was 
the first of the family to locate in Vanderburg county. 

James S. McDonald was educated in the district schools and early de- 
cided to devote his life to farming. Under his father's instruction he 
gained a thorough knowledge of the business and after the death of the 
father he purchased the interests of the other heirs in the farm and now 
is the owner of a well improved place of two hundred and eight acres on 
section 5, Armstrong township. In various matters pertaining to his voca- 
tion he has exercised rare sense and judgment and the excellent condition 
of his farm is proof that in the race of life he has won. He is thoroughly 
familiar with the care and handling of live stock and few men in the county 
have any better judgment as to the value of farm animals and the best 
methods of placing them on the market. 

On March 8, 1888, Mr. McDonald was united in marriage to Miss Lydia 
Williams, of Posey county, Indiana, a daughter of Harrison and Millvina 
(McReynolds) Williams. Her mother is now living in Posey county and 
is eighty years of age, but her father died thirty years ago. Mrs. McDonald 
has two sisters and a brother living in Posey county and three sisters are 
deceased. Mr. Williams was one of the pioneers of Indiana and he and his 
wife were both of Scotch ancestry, the early members of their families 



280 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

having settled in Tennessee. Two children have blessed the union of Mr. 
and Mrs. McDonald: Deorda L., born January 22, 1889, who received a 
liberal education and is now teaching school; and Casey, who was born 
January 29, 1890. He received a good public-school education and later 
graduated from a commercial college with high honors and diploma recom- 
mending him as capable of entering any business as bookkeeper. He prefers 
the farm, however, to a business career and he is devoting his talents in the 
same direction as his father. 

Mr. McDonald is of strong social tendencies and has a host of friends 
in Vanderburg county, who are welcomed by himself and wife at their 
hospitable home with a warmth of greeting that is not soon forgotten. His 
home is the abode of cheerfulness and good taste is exhibited in all its ap- 
pointments. With true Scottish grit he adheres to the religious belief of 
his ancestors and is a stanch supporter of the Presbyterian church. In 
political affiliations he is allied with the democratic party as the one which 
in his opinion is best adapted to the perpetuity of free institutions. He is 
a member of the Modem Woodmen of America and, while he is never a 
seeker for public office, he has served four terms as township trustee and in 
all responsibilities of a leading citizen of his community he has acquitted 
himself in such a way as to gain and retain the respect and esteem of all 
the people in the region where he or his family are known. 



EDWARD H. MANN. 



Gradually working his way upward, his varied experiences promoting 
his ability and calling forth his latent talents, Edward H. Mann is now 
a well known representative of industrial interests in Evansville as a partner 
in the Orr Iron Company. He was born in Jasper, Dubois county, Indiana, 
on the 19th of June, 1857, ^"d >s a son of John and Magdalena Mann. The 
father and mother were born near Mainz, Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, and 
accompanied their respective parents to the United States in early life, 
coming direct to Posey county, Indiana. Later John Mann removed to 
Jasper, Indiana, where he was engaged as clerk in a general mercantile 
establishment. 

Edward H. Mann was a little lad of nine years at the time of the removal 
of the family to Evansville. He continued his education in the schools of 
this city until fourteen years of age, when he secured a position as office 
boy in the mayor's office, there remaining from 1871 until 1873. From that 
time forward for a number of years he occupied positions in various public 
offices. Leaving the mayor's office, he spent one year as bookkeeper in the 
office of the waterworks department and was then appointed deputy county 
treasurer, which position he filled acceptably for three years. He then left 
political office to become a factor in the industrial circles of the city, be- 




EDWARD H. MAXN 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 283 

coming bookkeeper for the firm of Samuel Orr & Company in January, 1880. 
Two years later he entered into partnership relations with the house and for 
twenty-eight years has been a partner in the company, which is now known 
as the Orr Iron Company, controlling one of the important commercial 
industries of the city. He was one of the organizers of the Commercial 
Bank and is one of its directors. 



HARRY J. PECKINPAUGH. 

Prominent in the legal and political circles of Evansville, Harry J. Peckin- 
paugh has devoted his attention to the profession wherein advancement 
depends upon individual merit. The weight of a family name and the in- 
fluence of friends can avail little in this connection, for the attorney at the 
bar must prove his own strength and capability in the work that he does. 
Through the careful preparation of cases and their forceful presentation 
in the courts Mr. Peckinpaugh has become recognized as an able lawyer 
and at the same time his qualities of leadership have gained for him a posi- 
tion in political circles. 

He was bom in Leavenworth, Indiana, November 6, 1866, a son of 
William Henry and Mary (Emick) Peckinpaugh. The father, who was an 
attorney at law, practiced for many years at Jasper, Indiana. His death 
occurred in 1875 but the mother is still living, her home being in Grand 
View, this state. During the period of the Civil war Mr. Peckinpaugh en- 
listed for active service in defense of the Union and was chosen captain of 
Company E, Forty-ninth Indiana Infantry, with which he served for three 
years and two months. He was with General Grant on the Tennessee River 
Expedition and participated in the battle of Shiloh, at which time he held 
the rank of lieutenant. He afterward resigned to organize Company E of 
the Forty-ninth Indiana Infantry, of which he was made captain. He was 
wounded at the battle of Missionary Ridge and his death was the result 
of the injuries which he sustained in the war. In the family of Mr. and 
Mrs. Peckinpaugh were two children, the daughter being Mrs. James Gab- 
bert, of Grand View, Indiana. 

In his youthful days Harry J. Peckinpaugh devoted his time largely to 
the mastery of the branches of learning taught in the public schools and 
completed his education in the State University, of Indiana, from which 
he was graduated with the class of 1892, having completed a law course in 
that institution. His thorough equipment, combined with laudable ambi- 
tion, soon established him in a good practice and Evansville numbers him 
among her able and successful attorneys. He has never specialized in any 
particular department but has given his attention to general practice and 
is at home in the various branches of the law. He prepares his cases with 
great care and thoroughness, seeming to lose sight of no detail, while at 



284 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

the same time he gives due consideration to the more sahent points of the 
case, never for a moment forgetting the vital point upon which the decision 
in every case finally turns. 

On the 15th of May, 1894, Mr. Peckinpaugh was united in marriage to 
Miss Lola M. Huffman, of Spencer county, Indiana, and unto them have 
been bom two children, Ruth Dale and Mary Helen. In his fraternal re- 
lations Mr. Peckinpaugh is connected with the Elks and with the Royal 
Arcanum. His poHtical allegiance is given to the repubhcan party which 
has ever found in him a stalwart advocate, laboring earnestly and effec- 
tively to promote its success. He is recognized as one of the local party 
leaders, and was appointed to the office of county attorney, which position 
he filled for five years. Previous to that time, in 1899, he had been chosen 
to represent his district in the state legislature and was made chairman of 
the committee on building and loan associations, in which connection he 
drew up a bill which in that session became a law and still regulates the 
building and loan operations in the state. It resulted in curbing a great 
many of the companies that were charging enormous interest, and with- 
drawal fees, some of them having to suspend busienss. The interests of 
the people were thereby protected and the public at large recognized the 
beneficial chaarcter of the measure passed. Mr. Peckinpaugh beheves in 
justice and fair play not only in the courts but in all the departments of 
pubHc life and his influence is given on the side of reform and progress. 



CONRAD HAASE. 



Evansville owes not a little of its advancement to the manufacturing 
interests established in this city and its vicinity, which are constant con- 
tributors to the growth and prosperity of the community. These interests 
cover a wide range of industries and they give employment to thousands 
of persons who are patrons of all lines of business and are most important 
factors in the permanency and prosperity of the city. Among the indus- 
tries that are of long standing here is that of mattress manufacturing, in 
which Conrad Haase, whose name appears at the head of this review, is 
engaged. Mr. Haase inherited the business from his father, who was one 
of the early mattress manufacturers of this region and gained a wide repu- 
tation in his line, establishing a business which continues to flourish al- 
though its founder was called away years ago. 

Conrad Haase, Sr., was a native of Erfurt, Saxony, Germany, where 
he was born in 1826. He was educated in his native town, but after arriv- 
ing at manhood's estate he felt an irresistable desire to cast his lot in the 
new world, where opportunities were open for ambitious young men who 
were determined to improve their financial condition. Accordingly, Mr. 
Haase, in 1854, crossed the ocean and came direct to Evansville, which 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 285 

wlas then a thriving village and already gave evidences of becoming an im- 
portant city. Here Mr. Haase entered the employ of Mr. Hibbard, who 
was a mattress manufacturer. By patient application Mr. Haase in a few 
years became thoroughly familiar with all the details of the work, and in 
i860 he began for himself in the 700 block on Main street, erecting the 
first frame structure in that block. Under his management the business 
flourished and later he removed to the spot upon which it has since been 
conducted. In this city he was united in marriage September 27, 1866, to 
Miss Caroline Weaver, whose parents were farmers on the Stringtown 
road, and three children were the result of the union : Rosie and Elizabeth, 
both of whom are now deceased; and Conrad, Jr., whose record is here- 
with given. The father departed this life in 1908 and the mother on March 
23, 1910. 

Educated in the public schools of this city and also at a commercial 
college, Conrad Haase, Jr., grew up in the midst of advantages which 
proved a constant source of benefit to him in after life. Upon laying aside 
his books he entered the mattress factory of his father, where he soon be- 
came familiar with the business, and since the death of his father has had 
full charge of its affairs. In his work he has been highly successful, not 
only making many improvements in the mattresses which are sent out from 
the factory but also largely increasing the sales. He is owner of the 
building in which the business is located and also of several valuable city 
lots and of twenty-five acres of fine farming land in Center township on the 
right of way of the proposed Olney & Mount Carmel Interurban Railway. 

In 1897 Mr. Haase was married, the lady of his choice being Miss 
Elizabeth Kalkbrenner, a daughter of Frank and Helen Kalkbrenner, who 
were both born in the fatherland and emigrated to this country, locat- 
ing at Evansville. Mr. Haase is known as a public-spirited and prosperous 
citizen, who always has at heart the best interests of the city and who has 
the confidence and esteem of his friends. As a representative citizen and 
as a native of Evansville he takes just pride in its continued advancement. 



ALEXANDER LEMCKE. 

A man of good business ability and a citizen whose death was a distinct 
loss to the city of Evansville, Alexander Lemcke will not soon be forgotten 
by many who knew and admired him for his genial manner and excellent 
qualities. He was born at Hamburg, Germany, July 2, 1834. He received 
a good education in his native country and came to America in 1852, locat- 
ing in Posey county, Indiana, where he entered the general merchandise 
business. He later came to Evansville and became associated with Charles 
Leich in the wholesale drug business but retired from that enterprise after 
some years and went to Europe because of impaired health. Returning to 



286 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Evansville, he became interested in the woolen mills and was also again 
identified with Mr. Leich. At the time the Fulton Avenue Brewing Com- 
pany met with reverses Mr. Lemcke was appointed receiver and discharged 
his trust with remarkable ability. He was a member of the board of direc- 
tors of the First National Bank and for many years was a trustee of the 
Willard Library, acquiring a fortune in his business enterprises, of which 
he was a worthy and generous steward. 

On April 3, 1868, Mr. Lemcke was united in marriage to Miss Anna 
Hardigg, of Cincinnati, who survives her husband and is making her home 
in Evansville. Mr. Lemcke was a brother of Hon. J. A. Lemcke, ex- 
treasurer of the state of Indiana, who is now living at Indianapolis. 

A man of extensive reading and wide observation, Mr. Lemcke possessed 
many pleasing social qualities and made many friends during the course of 
a long business career. In announcing his death, which occurred January 31, 
1896, a leading newspaper of Evansville, said : "Mr. Lemcke was one of the 
most esteemed gentlemen of Evansville. He prospered in business and was 
always found in the front ranks of those who worked to build up this city. 
He had a wide acquaintance and many will be grieved by the news of his 
death." In closing this brief review we will state that Mr. Lemcke was a 
typical prototype of the best class of business men. He always commanded 
the confidence of associates and he made an impression for good upon the 
younger generation that will continue to exert a beneficent effect long after 
his name has been forgotten, for there is nothing so lasting as the lesson of 
a noble human character. 



HON. FREDERICK J. SCHOLZ. 

Because of long connection with Evansville, because of his honorable 
activity in business and public life, Hon. Frederick J. Scholz has come to 
occupy a prominent position in public regard. His loyalty and his worth 
have both stood the test of time and he is numbered among those who have 
brought to the discharge of official duties the same spirit of enterprise, 
progressiveness and activity which characterizes the conduct of individual 
interests. A native of Nashville, Illinois, Mr. Scholz was born on the 
nth of October, 1848, a son of the Rev. Frederick W. and Charlotte Sholz, 
both of whom were natives of Germany. They are now residents of 
Peoria, Illinois, and the father has devoted his life to the ministry. 

Frederick J. Scholz supplemented his early educational privileges by 
study in the Theological Seminary at Fort Wayne, Indiana, where he re- 
mained for three years. His initial business experience came to him as 
clerk on the steamboat Indiana, running between Cincinnati and New Or- 
leans. He was thus engaged from 1864 until 1866. His identification with 
commercial interests of Evansville has been unbroken since 1868, in which 
year he established a marble business that he has since conducted, its de- 




FREDERICK J. SCHOLZ 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 289 

velopment and growth making him one of the leading representatives of 
industrial activity in this city. He has lived in Evansville continuously 
since 1865 and his business headquarters are at Nos. 11 to 20 Third street, 
same has been conducted under the firm style of F. J. Scholz & Son since 
1895. In 1906 he built the New Vendome Hotel, one of the finest build- 
ings in the state, owned by a stock company now. This was built by Mr. 
Scholz following his return from Indianapolis and is a monument to his 
ability. Extending his efforts into other fields, he has become a stockholder 
in the Old State National Bank and the American Trust Company of 
Evansville; is a stockholder in the Claypool Hotel of Indianapolis; and 
is the possessor of considerable real estate in Evansville and elsewhere. 

The success which Mr. Scholz has achieved in business and the impor- 
tance of his work as a factor in the industrial circles of the city would alone 
entitle him to mention among Evansville's prominent men. In other fields, 
however, he has labored with equal success and has risen to eminence in 
the political field. He was first called to public office in 1876, when he was 
elected councilman from the fifth ward. He discharged his duties in such 
a manner that reelection continued him in the office for twelve years and 
his official prerogatives were ever used in support of measures which are 
of permanent value to the city. In 1890 he was appointed census commis- 
sioner of southern Indiana by President Harrison and made one of the 
best showings that Evansville has ever had. He was most careful and 
accurate in compiling the census, which in 1890 showed a population of 
fifty-one thousand, seven hundred and fifty-six, while the tenth census 
taken in 1880 showed but twenty-nine thousand. The work that he had 
done in behalf of the party and the creditable record which he had made 
in office led to his nomination for the position of state treasurer in the 
convention which was held at Fort Wayne in 1892, but with the other 
candidates on the republican ticket he was defeated at the ensuing election. 
In 1894, however, he was more fortunate. Again he received the nomina- 
tion and popular suffrage called him to the office, to which he was reelected 
in 1896. Following his retirement from the position he became one of the 
directors and builders of the Indianapolis & Logansport Traction Line. A 
letter written by Governor Durbin to Hon. Frederick J. Scholz upon the 
expiration of his term of office as state treasurer reads as follows: 

To Whom It May Concern: 

Hon. F. J. Scholz, the bearer, was treasurer of the state of Indiana for 
two terms and while filling the office in the most acceptable manner the 
state debt was reduced about three million dollars. No predecessor has 
ever paid so much money in reduction of the state debt. 

Mr. Scholz was an excellent officer. He was at all times courteous, 
considerate and alert. The interests of the state were well cared for dur- 
ing his terms. 



290 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

I cheerfully commend him for honesty, ability and trustworthiness. 

WiNFIELD T. DURBIN, 

Governor. 

May 4, 1901. 

Mr. Scholz, indeed, gave tangible proof of his interest in the welfare 
of the state and his loyalty thereto. He was a faithful custodian of the 
public exchequer and while he would not countenance useless or extrava- 
gant expenditure of the public funds he did not allow conservatism to 
hamper a wise progressiveness. 

In 1870 Mr. Scholz was married to Miss M. Lindauer, and unto them 
was born a son, Charles J., who is now in business with his father. At his 
second marriage Mr. Scholz wedded Miss Amelia Grill, a daughter of 
Colonel John F. and M. Grill, and unto them were born five children, of 
whom three are living, Lydia, Minnie and Clara, all of whom are married. 
Minnie and Clara are now residents of Indianapolis, while Lydia makes 
her home in Boston. 

Mr. Scholz and his wife belong to St. John's church. His fraternal re- 
lations are with the Masons and the Knights of Pythias. He belongs to 
Orion Lodge, No. 35, of the latter organization, and has taken the degrees 
of both the York and Scottish Rite in Masonry, being a thirty-second degree 
Scottish Rite Mason, also a Knight Templar and Consistory Mason and 
likewise a member of the Mystic Shrine. He is today numbered among the 
distinguished citizens of Indiana, having impressed his personality upon 
its business development and its history, while at the same time he has 
aided in no unimportant manner in shaping the annals of the state. His 
abilities well fit him for public office or for the successful control of im^ 
portant business affairs. While undoubtedly not without that ambition 
which is always an incentive to faithful service in public office, he yet re- 
gards the pursuit of private life as abundantly worthy of his best efforts 
and in the direction of important affairs has displayed keen sagacity, sound 
judgment and an aptitude for successful management. 



WILLIAM HOOKER. 



William Hooker, who is a flourishing farmer of Knight township, Van- 
derburg county, belongs to the Teutonic race that has contributed so mate- 
rially in its sons and daughters in upbuilding and extending this great re- 
public. He was born in Germany, November 10, 1848. He is the son of 
Henry Hooker who came to America, leaving his family at the old home in 
Germany, for the purpose of finding a suitable location under the American 
flag, and then sending for his wife and child. However, he was not as suc- 
cessful as he expected to be and after two years of disappointment he died 
from homesickness. In 1852 Mrs. Hooker came with her son William and 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 291 

her brother, John Ersick, to this country and settled on a farm in Knight 
township, Vanderburg county, Indiana. Four years later she was united 
in marriage to Christian Schiflfer and of this union four children were born, 
only one of whom is now living, John Schiffer. With him the mother made 
her home in Knight township until her death, February 19, 1910. 

The subject of this review was enducated in the district school and grew 
up under the direction of his stepfather, becoming well acquainted with the 
operations of the farm. By the exercise of thrift and economy he was able, 
in 1876, to purchase one hundred acres of land in Knight township. At the 
time of the purchase the land was unimproved. He erected a comfortable 
residence and other necessary buildings and his farm is recognized as one 
of the most productive in the neighborhood. Here he carries on general 
farming operations and each year adds to his financial resources through 
the profits from abundant harvests and the sale of live stock. 

In 1878 Mr. Hooker was united in marriage to Miss Christina Wiggers, 
of Knight township, and six children were born of the union: William, a 
dentist, residing in Evansville ; Jacob, a street car conductor, also of Evans- 
ville; Carrie, now Mrs. Harry Scheilds, of St. Louis; Julian, who is living 
upon the farm; and Nonie and Tonie, twins, who died in infancy. The 
family was deprived by the hand of death of its maternal head and in 1898 
Mr. Hooker was married to Mrs. Lena Neusmeyer, widow of Henry Neus- 
meyer, who has proved to him a faithful companion. 

Mr. Hooker is a member of St. John's Evangelical church, a faith in 
which he was reared and of which he is a worthy exemplar. He has always 
devoted his attention to his private affairs and by the concentration of his 
energies and the application of good judgment, he has become the owner of 
a productive farm and is sure of a comfortable income for himself and his 
family during the remaining years of his life. Such are the rewards of 
well directed energy. 



CAPTAIN HARRY D. BALDWIN. 

Death has been called by some "the king of terrors" and by others, "a 
gentle messenger" whose summons are to be regarded as an invitation to 
eternal joys. It may be comparatively easy at times to be reconciled to the 
messenger when his presence means the departure of one who has reached 
the limits of a career of usefulness, but when the summons is to one who 
is just in the midst of a busy life and who is looking forward to many years 
of continued advancement, death is a mystery whose solution is the deepest 
problem known to man. 

Captain Harry D. Baldwin was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1861, and 
departed this life at Evansville, April 8, 1907, at the age of forty-six years. 
His father was a wealthy manufacturer and for many years was promi- 



292 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

nently connected with the Cincinnati Cooperage Company, which was ex- 
tensively engaged in the stave and hoop business. Captain Baldwin re- 
ceived his education in the public schools and after laying aside his text- 
books, being of a vigorous and active temperament, he was attracted to the 
river transportation business. It was not many years before he was in 
charge of a fleet of tugs and he gradually extended his operations up and 
down the river until he was known in every port form Pittsburg to New 
Orleans. In 1891 he located at Paducah, Kentucky, continuing on the 
river and attaining a position as one of the most skillful men in his line of 
work. 

In 1902 Mr. Baldwin accepted the position of manager of the Evans- 
ville, Ohio & Green River Transportation Company with headquarters in 
Evansville, but at the end of two years he purchased an interest in the 
Anchor Paving Company and retired from river life. After he became in- 
terested in the company its operations were greatly increased and in 1906 
he acquired sole ownership of the Anchor Roofing & Paving Company. 
Here he displayed a business talent that gave bright promise for the future, 
but while directing construction work on the building of the Gas & Elec- 
tric Light Company, his hand came in contact with a high tension wire and 
he received a shock which resulted in his death. By his sudden and un- 
expected' departure the city lost a business man of the highest standing and 
of unusual ability. He was prominently identified with the Masonic order 
and held membership in the blue lodge, chapter, commandery and Shrine. 
He was also a member of the Travelers Protective Association and for 
many years before his death was an active worker in the Methodist Epis- 
copal church. In his business dealings he was prompt, reliable and trus- 
worthy, and all who knew him regarded him with the highest honor and 
respect. 



JACOB KARSCH. 

Jacob Karsch, deceased, for a number of years prominent in the business 
circles of Evansville, was bom in this city in 1850. He was the son of 
John and Margaret Elizabeth (Espenschite) Karsch, a thrifty and sub- 
stantial couple, who came from Germany to America and located in Evans- 
ville in the same year that their son Jacob was born. There were nine 
children in the family. The father engaged in the bakery business on 
Water street in this city until his death. 

The subject of this review was educated in the public schools and took 
a course in a commercial college. He also assisted his father in the bakery 
and as he grew up devoted a large part of his time to supplying the boats 
which were then quite numerous on the river with bread and other necessi- 
ties for the table. The family became interested in the mineral water busi- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 293 

ness, in which the father and sons attained a distinct success, putting up the 
water in an attractive style and having the ability to meet the public and to 
create a demand for a new commodity. In the course of years the business 
became the largest of the kind in the state of Indiana and was established 
as one of the permanent and valuable enterprises of the city. The firm 
was known as John Karsch & Sons and after the death of the father Jacob 
Karsch became sole proprietor. The business is now conducted by John 
Vogle & Sons. 

In 1893 Mr. Karsch was united in marriage to Miss Clara Schultz, a 
daughter of Dr. Theodore Schultz, a review of whose life appears else- 
where in this work. Two children were born to them ; the eldest of whom, 
Marguerite Schultz Karsch is still living, as is also her mother. 

Mr. Karsch was a member of the republican party and gave earnest ad- 
herence to its principles, believing that they are best adapted in the main- 
tenance of our form of government. Although he was essentially a busi- 
ness man, he cultivated social and fraternal relationships and retained his 
membership in the Knights of Pythias to the time of his death. He was also 
a member of St. John's church. He was known as a man of kind disposi- 
tion and upright character and in the course of an earnest and purposeful 
life he built up an enviable reputation among his business associates, endear- 
ing himself to many friends. On January 17, 1898, he was summoned from 
earthly scenes and his remains repose in the cemetery of the city where he 
was born and where he passed all the years of his life. 



WILLIAM BOWER. 



William Bower, a successful farmer of Vanderburg county, now living 
retired, was born in Scott township, this county, February 5, 1836. . He is 
a son of Thomas and Lucinda (Lee) Bower, his mother being a native of 
Scotland and his father of England. Mrs. Bower was the youngest sister 
of General Robert E. Lee, a leader of the Confederacy. The father came 
to America in 1835, believing that in this country he could have advantages 
unknown in the old world and this hope was quickly realized. He located in 
Vanderburg county, Indiana, where he bought one hundred and twenty 
acres of fine land, which he cleared and improved, erecting a comfortable 
residence and enhancing the value of the property to such a degree by his 
labors that at the end of twelve years he sold out at a good price. He then 
bought a tract of three hundred acres in Scott township and here he attained 
even greater success through his thrift and good management. He was 
called to his final rest after a long life of usefulness in 1877, his wife having 
preceded him about five years. 

William Bower was a pupil in the common schools and grew up upon the 
home farm, where he became thoroughly acquainted with agricultural pur- 



294 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

suits and also with stock-raising. From the beginning of his active career 
he was very industrious and, being of good habits, he purchased at twenty- 
four years of age an unimproved farm of one hundred acres, which he 
cleared and operated successfully until 1897, when he sold the place to his 
sons and retired from active labors. He is now living on the old homestead 
of one hundred and forty acres, Scott township which his sons are operating, 
and also owns a tract of forty-seven acres in Center township. 

In February, i860, Mr. Bower was united in marriage to Miss Martha J. 
Staser, a daughter of John C. and Margaret Staser, both natives of Indiana. 
He later married again and in his family are eight children : Margaret, now 
Mrs. Charles Vogel, of Boonville, Indiana; Clara, who married E. D. 
McAvay and lives in Evansville, Indiana; Annie, who became the wife of 
Wilber Blankenship and resides in Center township, this county ; Daniel W., 
living at home ; Martha E., also at home ; Katherine, now Mrs. S. K. Chall- 
man, who resides with her father ; and John H. and James C, both of whom 
live at home. 

Mr. Bower has been for many years identified with the democratic party 
and has held some responsible public positions. For about six years he 
served as county commissioner of Vanderburg county and for several years 
as township assessor. He has alwiays taken an active interest in advancing 
the cause of agriculture and is a member of the Farmers Institute and also 
of the American Society of Equity. He and his family are active members 
of the Methodist church and as he approaches the age of three score and 
fifteen years he looks back on a life well spent. He has always aimed to do 
right by others and he has no cause to regret any kindly act or helpful deed 
by which he was able to make his fellows happier or to prepare them better 
to meet life's responsibilities. 



JOHN NUGENT. 

The dominant qualities in the life record of John Nugent were such as 
commanded for him the respect, confidence and good will of his fellow- 
men. With comparatively few opportunities in youth, he not only worked 
his way upward in business lines but also constantly broadened his knowl- 
edge by wide reading and became a forceful and valued member of society, 
prominent in matters of public concern as well as active in individual busi- 
ness interests. 

A farm in Ireland was his birthplace, his natal day being in February, 
1838. His parents were James and Catherine (Tohill) Nugent, who came 
to America with their family during the childhood days of their son John. 
They settled upon a farm in Vanderburg county, where they lived until 
John Nugent, then seventeen years of age, induced them to remove to the 
city and the family home was set up in a small cottage on the west side. 




JOnX NUGENT 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 297 

The son believed that in the business circles of Evansville he might find 
lucrative employment. He was prompted by laudable ambition nor was his 
native diligence scared out by the arduous nature of the task. He at first 
was employed at odd jobs, doing any work that he could secure, and on pay 
days his earnings were turned over to his mother that she might use what 
was needed for the support of the family and save the balance for him in 
later life. In those early days rigid economy as well as untiring industry 
were practiced and in the course of years Mr. Nugent invested in property 
as his earnings permitted until at one time he owned nearly all of the land 
from Wabash avenue to the creek. He never for a moment forgot his 
filial duty and built a home for his father and mother. He cared for his 
parents as long as they lived and set a splendid example of filial devotion. 

Mr. Nugent's first real work was in driving an ox team at four dollars 
per month and as soon as possible he purchased a team and began doing 
grading work for Mr. Lowry. At one time he also conducted a small store 
but his labors were mostly in the line of teaming until he found it possible 
to broaden the scope of his efforts. After a time he began taking contracts 
for street improvements and put through many of the early streets and 
roads in Evansville and the surrounding district. Gradually he extended 
his business until he became one of the leading contractors of the city. 
He was fortunate in securing a great many public contracts and by close 
application and economy succeeded in winning a comfortable fortune. 
As he prospered he invested in property, owning and erecting the Arcade 
building and also owning other realty. 

In 1880 Mr. Nugent was united in marriage to Miss Mary L. Jenner, 
a daughter of Adam Jenner, who was born in 1810 and died April 10, 1890. 
He came from Germany, his native land, to America when nineteen years 
of age. He had previously learned the weaver's trade but as he could 
secure no work of that kind here, he followed different pursuits for a 
time. He was working in Washington, D. C., when twenty years of age. 
Subsequently he assisted in building the Evansville wharf and was also 
employed on boats running out of the town. He learned engineering in 
that way and occupied a position as steamboat engineer for some time. 
Later he was employed as engineer in the old Indiana mills until they were 
destroyed by fire, after which he went to Mount Vernon, Indiana, where 
he occupied a position as engineer for five years. He then returned to 
Evansville and in 1871 retired from active business life, enjoying well 
earned rest throughout his remaining days. Although his school privileges 
were limited, he was a great reader and became a well educated man. He 
held membership in St. John's church and his noble qualities of mind and 
heart won him the honor and respect of all. He married Louise Jenner, 
a native of Germany, who, though of the same name, was not a relative. 
She came to the United States when fourteen years of age and in early 
womanhood gave her hand in marriage to Mr. Jenner. Nine children were 
born unto them, of whom six reached years of maturity, while five are 



298 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

still living: Mary L., now Mrs. Nugent; Thomas; Elizabeth; Rose, and 
Fred. Jacob and Sarah have both passed away. The death of Mr. Jenner 
occurred April lo, 1890, but Mrs. Jenner is still living. 

Mr. Nugent was called to his final rest on the 24th of September, 1902, 
and thus passed from the scene of earthly activities one whose labors had 
been a forceful element in the work of public progress along many lines. 
He attended the Presbyterian church, was a member of the Ancient Order 
of United Workmen and was prominent in local political circles, giving 
stalwart support to the republican party. About 1882 he was a member 
of the city council and in 1888 was elected to the state legislature from 
what is known as the shoe string district. In 1895 he was appointed one 
of the trustees of the prison at Jefifersonville and was acting in that capac- 
ity when it was transformed into a reformatory. His helpful interest in 
public matters was of a tangible quality. His labors produced practical and 
substantial results, for he brought to bear in all public matters the same 
keen judgment and untiring industry which characterized him in the con- 
duct of his private business affairs. The story of such a life is an inspiring 
one. The public always loves a conflict and sympathy is on the side of the 
one whose cause is righteous, whose labor is persistent. In the battle of 
life Mr. Nugent came out conqueror. Though hampered in his youth by 
straitened financial circumstances and lack of early advantages, he later 
overcame difficulties and obstacles and with "Excelsior" blazoned upon 
his banner, he marched steadily forward until he reached the goal of 
prosperity. The thrill of success was his and his life work elicited 
encomiums, for the record was at all times honorable. 



ANTON TENBARGE. 



Anton Tenbarge, a well known and highly successful farmer of Vanden- 
burg county, was born in Armstrong township, February 10, 1867, the 
youngest son of John and Theresa (Brueger) Tenbarge, who were early set- 
tlers of this county, and prosperously identified with its farming interests. 
The father came to Armstrong township from St. Philip, Indiana, in 1866. 
He was a native of Holland, born in 1826, and about 1856 emigrated to Louis- 
ville, Kentucky, where he worked in a slaughter house for two years, at the 
end of which time he removed to St. Joseph, Vanderburg county, and en- 
gaged in the cooperage business. Two years later he located in St. Philip, 
where he conducted a general merchandise business and a saloon. Desiring 
to devote his entire attention to farming, he invested in two hundred acres 
of land, of which thirty-one acres were cleared. By patient labor the entire 
farm was made tillable and parts of it were placed under a high state of 
cultivation. Mr. Tenbarge departed this Hfe January 9, 1900. His wife 
was a native of Prussia and came with her parents to Vanderburg county 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 299 

ih her girlhood. Here she met her future husband and they were married 
in 1865 at St. Phihp. She died in 1868. 

Educated in St. Wendell's parochial school until sixteen years of age, 
Anton Tenbarge grew up upon the home farm, assisting his father in its 
development and gaining a thorough knowledge of a business to which he 
has devoted his life. After arriving at maturity he became the owner of the 
farm on which he was born and his industry and good management are ex- 
hibited in the neat and commodious buildings, well kept fences and the 
general air of comfort and prosperity everywhere to be seen on the farm. 
His place is regarded in many respects as a model. It comprises one hun- 
dred and forty-seven acres on section 6, Armstrong township, and is con- 
ducted so as to yield a handsome yearly return and at the same time the 
land is not impoverished but improves in value from year to year. 

On October 28, 1892, Mr. Tenbarge was united in marriage to Miss 
Katherine Hillenbrand, of Vanderburg county, a daughter of William and 
Katherine (Kissel) Hillenbrand, who were natives of Wheeling, West Vir- 
ginia. The American ancestors of the family came from Germany about 
1830 and were prominent and well-to-do people. Nine children have been 
bom to Mr. and Mrs. Tenbarge, four of whom died in infancy. The living 
children are: William, born August 26, 1896; Anton, May 5, 1899; Vincent, 
June 19, 1903; Edgar, October 6, 1904; and Henry, April 9, 1909. 

Mr. Tenbarge is at the present time township trustee and is a believer 
in the principles of the democratic party and has voted that ticket ever since 
he cast his first ballot. He is a consistent member of the Catholic church 
and in discharging his obligations in hfe is governed by the same principles 
of justice and fair dealing that constituted a salient feature in the character 
of his father. His entire life has been passed upon the farm where he now 
lives and amid the scenes where he was born. By an upright and conscien- 
tious course he has earned the respect of all the residents of the township, 
who regard him as one of the substantial citizens, whose promise is as good 
as his bond and who always willingly lends his assistance in advancing any 
worthy cause. 



RHINEHOLD F. SCHOR. 

Rhinehold F. Schor, for a number of years bookkeeper of the First 
National Bank of Evansville, was called from earthly labors twenty-one 
years ago, but is still remembered by many with whom he was associated 
in business, social and family relations. He was bom in Germany in 1844 
and was the son of E. Gottlieb and Pauline (Boehmer) Schor, who came 
with their family to Evansville in 1853. The father was an intelligent man 
of good business ability and was connected with a German paper in this 
city for many years, continuing here until his death. 



300 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Rhinehold F. Schor possessed the advantages of a good education, 
which he received in the pubHc schools of this city. After leaving school 
he was identified with the same paper as his father and later became con- 
nected with an insurance company then operating on Water street. For 
quite a number of years in the latter part of his life he was associated 
with the First National Bank in the capacity of bookkeeper, exhibiting an 
industry and faithfulness which would have gained success for him in any 
vocation to which he might have turned his attention. 

He always took a great interest in muncipal affairs and as a member 
of the school board proved highly efficient in promoting the educational 
welfare of the growing generation. In politics he was in sympathy with 
the republican party to which he gave the interest of a true citizen, al- 
though he never sought public office or aspired for political honors. He 
was a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and of the Ger- 
man Evangelical church and never permitted an opportunity to pass for 
promoting the comfort and well being of those about him. He was also 
a charter member of the Orien Lodge, K. P. 

In 1868, at Evansville, Mr. Schor was united in marriage to Miss Mary 
Schmutte, a daughter of Henry and Mary (Abel) Schmutte, both of whom 
were natives of Germany. Five children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Schor, 
of whom four are living: Mrs. Scott Haynes, Ernest, Anna and Arthur. 

Mr. Schor was a man of scientific tastes and was especially fond of 
nature, of which he was a constant student and close observer. He made 
a practical use of his knowledge by collecting many insects and relics which 
are now to be seen in the city museum and indicate that had he possessed 
the advantage of a university education he would have attained prominence 
in the scientific world. 



DANIEL G. TWEEDALL, M. D. 

Dr. Daniel G. Tweedall, of Evansville, has made a practical demonstra- 
tion of success, although he has been engaged in practice only seven years 
in a field where other physicians of long standing were well established. 
Application, perseverance and energ>' are the elements that have greatly 
contributed to his career, and in an important degree he possesses the good 
will of the community. 

Dr. Tweedall was bom in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1881, a son 
of Samuel Tweedall, who removed with his family to Evansville in 1893 
and became identified with the Evansville Tool Works. The Doctor came 
with his parents to Evansville and was graduated from the high school of 
this city. Having early decided to devote his life to the healing art, he 
matriculated in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Chicago, which 
is a branch of the University of Chicago, and was graduated with high 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 301 

honors in 1903, receiving the degree of M. D. In recognition of his ability 
and the faithfulness with which he attended to his duties, he was appointed 
house surgeon and during the last year of his attendance at the college 
was a resident of the hospital. This gave him the advantage of contact 
with many of the leading physicians and surgeons and an insight as to the 
actual workings of a difficult and trying profession, which has assisted him 
greatly in his career. After leaving Chicago he returned immediately to 
Evansville and has since been actively engaged in practice here. 

In 1901 Dr. Tweedall was united in marriage to Miss Peresstrella M. 
Cody, a daughter of Bruce Cody, of this city. She is a lady of many ac- 
complishments and has been a constant support and encouragement to her 
husband at the outset of what promises to be a highly successful career. 

Dr. Tweedall is secretary of the United States pension examining board 
of this city and is also examiner for the Massachusetts Life Insurance 
Company, the Improved Order of Red Men, etc. In politics he is identi- 
fied with the republican party although he is not an ardent politician, as 
his time and attention are devoted to his profession. He is a member of 
the Indiana State Medical Society, the Vanderburg County Medical So- 
ciety, and by a courteous manner and a straightforward course has es- 
tablished himself in the confidence of all with whom he has been brought 
in contact. He is a thorough student of everything pertaining to his pro- 
fession and to the best of his ability discharges every obligation as it ap- 
pears. He belongs to that class of men who add worth and dignity to their 
calling and who represent the best product of modem life. 



CHRISTIAN D. HELDT. 

The soldiers of the Civil war who fought for the Union will always 
command the admiration and respect of every lover of liberty. Viewed 
at the distance of half a century, it is seen that the cause for which they 
fought was one of the noblest the world has ever known. By their sacri- 
fices they established upon permanent foundations a republic which clearly 
stands out as a symbol of liberty and fraternity and awakens a response 
in the heart of every lover of freedom. The mission of America, as has 
been beautifully said, is to teach mankind the meaning of liberty and, not- 
withstanding all the faults that we may discover in our government, she 
is accomplishing that mission and is the greatest civilizer on the globe. It 
is to men like Christian D. Heldt, now a prosperous farmer of Knight 
township, this county, that the permanency of American institutions is 
due. 

Mr. Heldt is of German parentage and was born at Rehme, Germany, 
in 1837. At seventeen years of age, after having received his education in 
the common schools and believing that America presented a more inviting 
field for an ambitious young man than his native land, he came to Evans- 



302 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ville and began as a farm laborer. He continued at this work until after 
the call to arms by President Lincoln, when, like a valiant and true-hearted 
man, he presented himself for enlistment under the stars and stripes and 
served through the entire war as a private in the Twenty-fourth Indiana 
Volunteers. 

After returning from the army Mr. Heldt was a different man from 
what he had been as a recruit a few years before. The privations and 
sufferings through which he passed are known only to the soldier and many 
of his comrades who started out with high ambition and undaunted courage 
and are now at rest in the southland, where tens of thousands of brave men 
of both armies met their death. Hr. Heldt resumed his occupation as a 
farmer in Vanderburg county and is now living in comfort on a farm of 
two hundred and fifteen acres, which he redeemed from its wild condition 
and has made one of the best improved farms of the township. 

In 1866 Mr. Heldt was united in marriage to Miss Mary Fickas, of 
Vanderburg county, and six children were born to this union: Humphrey; 
Mary, now Mrs. Joseph Haag, whose husband is a farmer of Knight town- 
ship ; Lizzie, the wife of Julius Wiggers, also a farmer of Knight township ; 
Mattie, now Mrs. Elmer Hodson, of Evansville; Bismarck; and Frede- 
rick. Mr. and Mrs. Heldt have reared their children to the same habits 
of industry which they themselves have applied during their entire lives 
and have given them every advantage of society and education that the 
neighborhood affords. 

Mr. Heldt often meets with his old comrades of the war and at Farragut 
Post, G. A. R., of which he is a member, the old soldiers gather to renew 
the friendships of years ago in recalling the thrilling scenes of the great 
event of their lives. Although the subject of our review has never urged 
his personal claims for public ofifice, prferring as he does the duties of 
private life, the voters of his township selected him as a competent man 
for assessor and for thirteen years he filled that office to the satisfaction 
of the entire community. 



EBEN C. POOLE. 



One of the popular men of Evansville, who has by his genial qualities 
attracted the good-will and friendship of many of the best citizens of this 
city, is Eben C. Poole, born in Bangor, Maine, in 1847. He is a son of 
Eben and Hannah F. Poole and comes of sturdy and long-lived ancestry. 
He received his early training under favorable auspices in a happy home 
and was educated in the public schools of his native city. There he lived 
until he was sixteen years of age and then he was seized with the desire to 
migrate — a desire that has been one of the important elements in the dis- 
tribution of mankind and the advancement of the race. He first went to 




EBEX C I'dor.E 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 305 

Boston and there received induction into the drug business. The feeling 
of unrest, however, still prevailed and he responded to the invitation of a 
brother who was engaged in the meat business in Jersey City, New Jersey, 
where he joined him in that line of trade. Later he went to 
St. Louis and entered the service of the Pullman Company as a conductor, 
running between St. Louis and Houston, Texas. After an experience 
which extended over a number of years and in the course of which he 
operated in many parts of the country under the direction of the Pullman 
Company, he settled for a short time on an Illinois farm. However, he 
was called from the farm by an appointment as receiving cashier for the 
Monarch Palace Car Company and later entered the service of the Wood- 
ruff Car Company, continuing with this organization until its business was 
acquired by the Pullman Company and he found himself once more under 
the same general management in which he had started years before. Mr. 
Poole always had the confidence of his employers and he made a very ex- 
tensive acquaintance among business men and others in his travels over 
the country. 

At last, however, he retired permanently from the railway field and 
settled in Evansville, where he engaged in the oil business. About sixteen 
years ago he was elected to the office of justice of the peace in this city 
and at each recurring election has been returned to the same office, which 
he has conducted in such a manner as to meet the general acceptance of the 
people. 

On the 20th of September, 1867, at Boston, Mr. Poole was married to 
Miss Ella C. Buzzell and one son, Samuel C, who now lives at Louisville, 
Kentucky, was born to them. His wife having been called away by the 
hand of death, he was united in marriage, at Jersey City, December 15, 
1875, to Miss Margaret H. Mathews and five children resulted from this 
union: Helen F., now Mrs. W. M. Crabb; Ella M., now Mrs. Henry 
Feneman; Lillian M., who became the wife of George Bertelson ; Edward 
Percy; and Harold M. 

The father of Mr. Poole was a member of the old whig party, and ever 
since he arrived at voting age the son has given earnest support to the re- 
publican party, which succeeded the whig party in the '50s. He became a 
member of the Knights of Pythias in Boston in 1871 and was a charter 
member of the local lodge of Ben Hur and is past chief of the grand lodge 
of that order. He is a member of the Court of Honor and was first presi- 
dent of the Owls Club of this city. As is indicated by his fraternal affilia- 
tions, Mr. Poole is a gentleman of pleasing address, with pronounced social 
characteristics, and is an active worker in all matters tending to promote 
brotherly relations between men. Having had a large acquaintance with 
human nature in many of its phases, he is broad-minded in his views and 
easily makes friends wherever he is known. In his duties as a public 
officer he often adheres to the spirit rather than the letter of the law, lean- 
ing to the side of clemency when circumstances admit but at all times 



306 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

shielding the public against the habitual lawbreaker. He believes that 
within certain limits the law may often be applied as a reformatory measure 
and it should not always be used as a means of chastisement. He is an 
independent thinker, a man of sound judgment and one who has in an 
eminent degree the confidence of those with whom he has been longest 
associated. 



JOSEPH F. SCHENK. 



An excellent farm of one hundred and eighty acres responds to the 
care and labor bestowed upon it by its owner, Joseph F. Schenk and its 
fine appearance is the result of his practical and progressive methods, im- 
provement and cultivation. He has always been identified with agricul- 
tural life, his birth having occurred upon a farm in Perry county, Indiana, 
on the 2d of April, 1866, his parents being Joseph and Mary Schenk. The 
father was bom in Germany but was brought to America by his parents 
when a little lad of seven years. At the time of his marriage he settled in 
Posey county, Indiana, where he followed general farming and also op- 
erated a sawmill. He was an industrious, energetic man and gained his 
success by reason of his untiring industry and determination. 

While spending his youthful days under the parental roof, Joseph F. 
Schenk of this review pursued his education in the district schools in the 
winter months ; in the summer seasons he was employed in the labors of the 
fields and gained practical experience which well quahfied him to take up 
farming on his own account after attaining his majority. In his farm work 
he practices the rotation of crops and all the modern methods, which 
science sanctions and experience approves. Of his farm of one hundred 
and eightly acres he has himself cleared fifty acres, cutting down the trees, 
burning the brush and grubbing up the stumps until the land has been 
brought to a cultivable condition and now responds readily to the care 
and labor which he bestows upon it. As the years have gone by he has 
prospered in his undertakings owing to his close application and careful 
management and aside from his farming interests he has stock in the West 
Side Bank of Evansville. 

On the 28th of March, 1894, in St. Boniface church, in Evansville, 
was celebrated the marriage of Joseph F. Schenk and Miss Julia Kleiderer, 
who was bom on the 21st of July, 1877, a daughter of Charles H. and 
Elizabeth (Kold) Kleiderer. Her parents were both natives of Germany 
and came to America in the early '60s, Mrs. Kleiderer making her way 
direct to Vanderburg county, while Mr. Kleiderer took up his abode in 
Henderson, Kentucky. He was a tailor by trade and followed that pur- 
suit in Henderson until after his marriage, when he removed to Evans- 
ville, continuing a resident of that city until his death, which occurred on 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 307 

the 2d of January, 1886. His widow afterward married again, becoming 
the wife of Henry Schlomann, on the 27th of November, 1889. She is 
still living in Evansville. 

The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Schenk has been blessed with seven 
children : Charles, now sixteen years of age ; Clarence Lewis, aged eleven ; 
Lillian Anna, nine years of age; Catherine Mary, seven years; Frances 
Caroline, three years, and Emma Julia, two years of age. They also lost 
one son, John Francis, who died at the age of thirteen years. The parents 
are members of the German Catholic church and are generous Contibutors 
to its support. 

Mr. Schenk gives his political allegiance to the democratic party and 
has served as township assessor. He is interested in all matters of pro- 
gressive citizenship and gives his aid and cooperation to many movements 
for the general good. He has always lived in this part of the state and is 
a high type of the progressive agriculturist, who utilizes every legitimate 
means for the advancement of his business interests, keeping his farm at 
all times in good condition so that it constitutes one of the attractive fea- 
tures of the landscape. 



THEODORE THEOPHILUS SCHULTZ, M. D. 

Dr. Theodore T. Schultz, who will long be remembered as one of the 
honored' men of Evansville, was born at Juliusburg in Schlesien, Germany, 
October 13, 1816, and was a son of Dr. Joseph Andreas Schultz, a prac- 
ticing physician of Juliusburg, who was also noted for unusual proficiency 
in music and ability as a composer. Dr. Schultz possessed every advantage 
of a refined home during the formative years of his life. After complet- 
ing the course in the public schools he attended the gymnasium and was 
graduated from the university. He read medicine under his father, who 
was a disciple of the homeopathic school, and adopted that profession as 
his life work. He was for some time connected in an official capacity with 
the German government, but, being ambitious for an independent career 
and having faith in the opportunities presented in America, he came to 
Evansville about 1854, where he soon acquired an extensive and lucrative 
medical practice. From the first he was a zealous advocate of homeopathy 
and during his entire life as a professional man he put forth every effort 
to advance the principles of medicine as enunciated by Dr. Hahnemann 
and his followers. By word and by pen he gave utterance to his senti- 
ments on a subject that he considered of very grave importance and which 
engrossed much of his thought. He was an able and successful practitioner 
and attracted many patients from places distant from Evansville. 

In politics Dr. Schultz was a born reformer and early adopted the sys- 
tem known as idealistic socialism, whose principles he believed would ulti- 



308 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

mately prevail in human government. He was also a pronounced free 
thinker. He had seen the eiTects of religious intolerance in the old country 
and was an uncomprising advocate of free speech. He was a great reader, 
not only of works pertaining to his profession but of those relating to 
philosophy, history, science and governmental subjects, and in the midst 
of a busy life he gained an unusual fund of knowledge pertaining to many 
subjects and was recognized by his associates as a scholar, whose opinion 
was always worth thoughtful consideration. 

On the 22d of October, 1842, at New Zelle, Prussia, Dr. Schultz was 
united in marriage to Miss Louise Henriette Weber, whose father was a 
cloth manufacturer of that city. Ten children were born to Dr. and Mrs. 
Schultz, of whom three are now living: Mrs. Clara Karsch, the widow of 
Jacob Karsch, a review of whom is foiuid elsewhere in this work; Mrs. 
Elfrieda Bragg, of Pittsburg, Kansas; and Mrs. Herman Glass Merritt, of 
Florida. 

Dr. Schultz was called from earthly life on the ist of October, 1904, 
at the age of eighty-eight years. His relatives and friends, knowing of his 
sterling qualities, will ever cherish his memory and the flowers that bloom 
each spring on his grave are a mute evidence of their unbroken affection. 
The family of which he was a worthy representative contained many noted 
physicans of special talent in the healing art, including Dr. Oscar Schultz, 
now deceased, of Mount Vernon, Indiana, who was a son of our subject 
and also his grandson. Dr. Oscar Schultz, professor of pathology in the 
Cleveland Medical College, and his daughter Elfrieda, who is a practicing 
physician in Kansas at the present time. It will be seen that the family 
presents a remarkable succession of talented members, all of whom have 
shown special ability in a profession that demands the very best judgment 
and also calls for discriminative powers of the highest degree. 



EDWARD BOETTICHER. 

If the individual could but know that success awaits him, even though 
the period be remote, such knowledge would greatly enlighten the labor 
which he performs as the years pass on, but between the present day and 
the future there is drawn an impenetrable veil and he must content him- 
self with the faithful performance of daily duty without understanding 
what the outcome is to be. When a young lad of thirteen years Edward 
Boetticher became a clerk in a cigar store, little dreaming then that he 
would one day be the senior member of the firm of Boetticher & Kellogg, 
wholesale dealers in hardware and proprietors of the largest establish- 
ment of this character in Evansville. For fifty-three years he has been a 
resident of this city and throughout the entire period has been a repre- 
sentative of the hardware trade, yet his success has not been confined 




ODWARD BOHTTl 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 311 

wholly to this line, for he has been connected with several important en- 
terprises. He started upon the journey of life in Monroe county, Ohio, 
January 7, 1837, his parents being Frederick W. and Elizabeth (Weppler) 
Boetticher, both of whom were natives of Germany, born in 1798 and 
1814, respectively. The father came to the United States in 1832, while 
the mother arrived in 1834. They were married near Wheeling, West 
Virginia, but afterward lived at various places owing to the itinerant cus- 
toms of the ministry of the German Protestant church, which Mr. Boet- 
ticher represented. He died in 1849, however, after which his widow made 
her home with her son Edward. 

Edward Boetticher spent the greater part of his early life near Cin- 
cinnati, Ohio, and acquired his education in private schools of that city. 
When a youth of thirteen he sought to provide for his own support by 
securing a position as clerk in a retail cigar store in Cincinnati, where he 
remained for two years. He then entered the hardware store of Tyler, 
Davidson & Company, where he remained for five years, and in 1857 he 
came to Evansville and accepted a position with Charles S. Wells, the 
association being maintained until the death of Mr. Wells in 1863. Mr. 
Boetticher afterward continued with the new firm of Wells, Kellogg & 
Company until 1864, at which time he was admitted to a partnership in 
the business. Three years later he and Mr. Kellogg took over the busi- 
ness under the firm name of Boetticher & Kellogg Company, which style 
is still retained. He was made president of the company in 1897 and has 
continued as its chief executive officer to the present time, covering a 
period of thirteen years. In the death of Mr. Kellogg, which occurred on 
the 8th of December, 1903, there was terminated a business association 
between them as fellow clerks and partners which had existed for over 
forty years. At that time O. H. Kellogg succeeded to the position of 
secretary and treasurer of the company. This is the largest concern of 
the kind in the city and the third largest in the state. The business has 
enjoyed a steady and substantial growth and its ramifying interests now 
reach out over a large territory, establishing in different localities the 
reputation of the house for reliability, for enterprise and prompt execu- 
tion of orders. Boetticher & Kellogg Company are members of the 
National Hardware Association of America and thus keep in touch with 
the progressive thought which is bringing about thorough organization and 
careful management among all the representatives of the trade. Mr. Boet- 
ticher is also vice-president of the Evansville Trust & Savings Bank and 
a director of the Central Trust & Savings Bank, and his name is an hon- 
ored one in financial circles. 

On the 29th of November, 1859, Mr. Boetticher was married to Miss 
Amelia S. Beste, who was bom in Cincinnati, Ohio, February 27, 1839, 
and is a daughter of Henry A. Beste. They have become the parents of 
eight children, of whom three are living, William H., Oscar and Fred- 
erick C. all of whom are now connected with their father in business. 



312 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

The religious faith of the family is indicated in their membership in 
St. John's German Protestant church. Mr. Boetticher also belongs to the 
Independent Order of Odd Fellows and to the Masonic fraternity. His 
political endorsement has been given to the republican party since its 
organization, and in 1874 he became a member of the city council, and 
later was chosen president of the board of sinking fund commissioners 
of Evansville. Regarded as a citizen, and in his social relations he belongs 
to that public-spirited, useful and helpful type of men whose ambitions 
and desires are centered and directed in those channels through which 
flow the greatest and most permanent good to the greatest number. He 
has cared little for public office, yet there is probably not a man of large 
private interests in Evansville that has felt a more hearty concern for the 
public welfare or has been more helpful in bringing about those purify- 
ing and wholesome reforms which have been gradually growing in the 
political, municipal and social life of the city. It is true that his chief life 
work has been that of a remarkably successful merchant, but the range of 
his activities and the scope of his influence have reached far beyond this 
special field. Unselfish and untiring, he prefers a quiet place in the back- 
ground to the glamxDur of publicity, but his rare aptitude and ability in 
achieving results make him constantly sought and often bring him into 
a prominence from which he would naturally shrink were less desirable 
ends in view. 



JAMES F. SAUNDERS. 

Saunders is one of the well known family names of Vanderburg county; 
four successive generations of the family have been known here up to the 
present time. James F. Saunders, head of the Saunders Transfer Com- 
pany of Evansville, was bom in Perry township, this county, on the 15th 
of April, 1839, and is a son of William Carroll and Lydia (Faulkner) 
Saunders. William C. Saunders was also born in Vanderburg county and 
his father, Ezekiel Saunders, grandfather of our subject, was one of the 
first white man to settle in Perry township. He came to this region when 
it was a wilderness, built a log cabin and commenced farming. He was 
here at the time of the organization of the county and was one of the first 
county commissioners. He was also a Baptist preacher and early services 
of the church were held in his barn, which was the first frame bam erected 
in Vanderburg county. Ezekiel Saunders was a typical pioneer, a man of 
stout and rugged character, of great determination and a natural leader 
in his time. William Carroll Saunders, who was a worthy successor to a 
noted pioneer, spent his boyhood in clearing away the forest and improv- 
ing the farm and later often rode on horseback to Vincennes to enter ap- 
plications for homesteads at the government land offices for settlers who 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 313 

were arriving from Germany and different states. He built the first saw 
and grist mill in this region and also had charge of a farm of two hundred 
and fifty acres, which he ably conducted until his death in 1853. His wife 
was a native of Maryland and a daughter of James Faulkner, who settled 
in German township in 1819 and there passed the last years of his life. 
Six children were born to the union of Mr. and Mrs. Saunders, four of 
whom are now living: Richard; Ezekiel, of Mount Vernon, Posey county, 
Indiana; Henry, of Union township, this county; and James F., the sub- 
ject of this sketch. 

Educated in the early schools of his neighborhood, James F. Saunders 
grew up upon the home farm and then located in Union township, Van- 
derburg county, where he successfully engaged in farming and where he 
now owms a highly improved farm of three hundred and fifty acres. In 
1890 he was elected county treasurer of Vanderburg county and was re- 
elected in 1892, serving two terms. Eleven years ago he entered the 
transfer business by purchasing the outfit then owned by Mrs. B. S. Ven- 
neman. This business he has developed on an extensive scale and it is now 
known as the Saunders Transfer Company and includes hack hne with 
buses to all hotels and transfer business generally. The company makes 
use of forty horses and employs thirty to thirty-five men and is one of the 
substantial paying institutions of the city. 

On the 9th of March, 1870, Mr. Saunders was united in marriage, in this 
county, to Miss Haidee Uffield, a native of Ohio. Two children were bom 
to them: George, now in business with his father; and Ruth. Mr. Saun- 
ders has for many years been identified with the democratic party and 
while holding the office of county treasurer he gave proof of many ad- 
mirable traits as a public official. He is a man of frank and straight- 
forward address, and contact with the world has broadened his mind and 
removed the prejudices that usually linger with those who have not similar 
opportunities. He is a member of the Methodist church and is recognized 
by all classes as a just and honorable citizen who has fairly attained a 
worthy position among his fellowmen by his own exertions. 



FRED H. KUEHNE. 



Fred H. Kuehne who, while he makes no pretensions, is recognized as 
one of the highly successful farmers and live-stock raisers in this county. 
He was bom in German township, December 23, 1877, and is a son of 
Fred and Elizabeth (Aether) Kuehne. The father, who w&s born in Sax- 
ony, Germany, November 30, 1844, was drafted into the German army 
and participated in the war between Prussia and Austria in 1866. After 
its close, having had a glimpse of the great world and feeling a desire for 
freedom of action which he could not experience in his native country, he 



314 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

decided to seek his fortune in a foreign land and came to America in 1867. 
After arriving in New York he proceeded westward, stopping in German 
township, Vanderburg county, Indiana, where he settled on eighty acres 
of partially cleared timber land, which he improved after a great deal of 
hard labor. He also purchased additional land until he was the owner 
of a farm of three hundred acres, which he sold in 1886, and bought a 
fine tract of two hundred acres in Armstrong township, upon which he 
established a permanent home. He was an ambitious, energetic and suc- 
cessful fanner and his example proved worthy of imitation by many 
younger members of the community. He departed this life June 5, 1899, 
and his remains are buried in St. Paul's cemetery, St. Joseph, German 
township. 

Mrs. Kuehne, the mother of our subject, first saw the light of day in 
Doembach, Rheinpfalz, Bavaria, Germany, April 15, 1835. She came to 
German township, Vanderburg county, with her parents in 1853, the fam- 
ily settling upon a tract of forty acres of timber land. Her father was 
a man of great industry and perseverance and his labors on the farm 
brought independence to himself and those that were dearest to him. Mrs. 
Kuehne was twice married. After the death of her first husband she 
wedded Fred Kuehne in 1871. Although well advanced in years she 
has retained in a remarkable degree her strength of mind and of body 
and now lives at the old family home in Armstrong township with her 
daughter. Ten children were born to her and her second husband, four 
of whom are married and are happily situated in Hfe. 

Fred H. Kuehne was educated in the district schools and having de- 
cided to devote his attention to farming, applied himself with such ability 
and diligence that after his father's death he purchased from the other 
heirs the family holdings and has since made his home on the farm where 
he was bom. An evidence of his success may be expressed in the state- 
ment that his wheat crop for the season of 1910 amounted to four thou- 
sand bushels. As a general farmer and stock-raiser, taking into consider- 
ation the size of his farm, he has no superior in the county. 

On September 2, 1902, Mr. Kuehne was united in marriage to Miss 
Elizabeth Ebert, of Armstrong township, a daughter of Peter and Elizabeth 
(Keil) Ebert, both natives of Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, and pioneer set- 
tlers of this county. Her father was called to his reward nineteen years ago 
but her mother is still living. Four children have been bom to Mr. and Mrs. 
Kuehne: Henry, bom November 11, 1903; William, in October, 1905; 
Elizabeth, in February, 1907; and Fred, in March, 1909. 

Mr. Kuehne, although his father was an ardent democrat and the neigh- 
borhood in which he was reared was strongly democratic, is independent 
politically and votes for the best and most progressive men rather than 
for any party ticket. He is a consistent member of the Evangelical church 
and is known as a wide-awake citizen, tolerant of the opinions of others 
and with a mind always open to the reception of truth from whatsoever 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 315 

source it may appear. He is recognized by those who know him best as 
a worthy descendant of a sturdy ancestry, a man of high character and of 
patriotic spirit, who seeks not only the comfort and happiness of his own 
family but also the advancement of the entire community in which he lives. 



WILLIAM E. SIEBEKING. 

Among the industrious and respected farmers of Union township, 
Vanderburg county, may be named William E. Siebeking, who is a native 
of the township where he now lives and who has been identified all his 
life with its farming interests. He was bom January i, 1867, and is a son 
of Christian and Mary Ann (Edmond) Siebeking. Mr. Siebeking was a 
native of Germany, but like thousands of sturdy descendants of German an- 
cestry, he found in the American republic a more favorable opportunity 
for advancement in the world than the old country could afford. His 
wife, the mother of our subject, was born in Union township, this county, 
and on the farm where she and her husband took up their abode they es- 
tablished a comfortable home and the head of the family successfully en- 
gaged in general farming and by habits of industry he gained the recogni- 
tion and respect of the people of the neighborhood. 

William E. Siebeking was bom upon his father's farm and was educated 
in the little schoolhouse where the boys and girls of the district were in- 
structed in the fundamental branches during the cooler months of the year, 
assisting on the farm or in the household during the remaining months. 
The parents taught their children to work and thus established in them a 
habit that is of the utmost importance in the early training of the younger 
generation. William E. Siebeking after leaving school devoted his en- 
tire attention to the farm and after he began farming on his own respon- 
sibility he showed a talent for agricultural pursuits that gave fine promise 
for the future. He assisted in clearing the land of the forest, guided the 
plow as it broke the virgin soil, and gained a knowledge of planting, har- 
vesting and marketing so necessary in a farming pursuit. He also gained 
a great deal of information as to live-stock and the grades that bring the 
best prices, so that he has been able, as a general farmer, to meet the de- 
mands of buyers looking for choice animals for which there is always a 
market. He is now farming upon an extensive scale and is the owner of a 
well improved farm of one hundred acres, also renting a farm of one hun- 
dred and seventy-five acres which he is able to operate to good advantage. 
He makes use of the latest improved machinery and his farm residence 
and surroundings indicate the good judgment and careful management of 
one who is fully alive to the comforts and conveniences of the up-to-date 
farming establishment. 



316 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

On February 12, 1889, Mr. Siebeking was united in marriage to Miss 
Louise J. Rouse, of Union township, a daughter of Michael and Sarah 
(Carter) Rouse, the former of Kentucky and the latter of Union town- 
ship. Mrs. Siebeking has been indeed a helpmate to her husband, attend- 
ing with greatest care to the duties of the household while he worked in 
the iields or directed others in the various operations of the well regulated 
farm where every month of the year brings new duties and responsibilities. 

Mr. Siebeking is identified with the republican party and has always 
shown the interest of a patriotic citizen in voting for measures endorsed 
by that party, although he has never been a seeker for office for himself. 
He served, however, with general acceptance for four years as supervisor 
of the township. He is a member of the Baptist church and is in hearty 
sympathy with all movements, moral or religious, that aim to improve the 
character of the individual or to elevate the standard of society. Mr. Sie- 
beking is happy in his life work and is a good example of an American 
citizen actuated by worthy ideas which he has successfully applied ever 
since he entered upon his active career. 



ARTHUR H. MEYER. 



Arthur H. Meyer, who since July, 1908, has engaged in the practice of 
law at Evansville, is a native of Indiana and has passed his life up to the 
present time in this state. He was born at Elberfeld, Warrick county, Sep- 
tember 8, 1882, and is a son of George J. and Hannah Meyer. His father 
was born in Gibson county, Indiana, November 22, 1853, and devoted his 
attention to farming until 1889, having moved to Elberfeld some years pre- 
viously. He engaged in the agricultural implement business from 1889 
until 1900, when he closed out his establishment and entered the grain trade. 
In 1908 he retired and is making his home in Evansville. 

Arthur H. Meyer attended the public schools until sixteen years of 
age. He then entered the high school at Haubstadt, Gibson county, pur- 
suing his studies so assiduously that in two years, at the age of eighteen, 
he was graduated. Desiring to be self-supporting, he secured a teacher's 
certificate and for four years taught in the district schools of Warrick 
county. In the meantime he was preparing for advanced studies and had 
fixed his mind on the law as his life pursuit. He attended Oakland City 
Collie two terms and in the spring of 1904 matriculated in the Indiana 
University, from which he was graduated with the degree of A. B. in June, 
1907. His next step was to the law department of the State University. 
In one year he completed the course, graduating in 1908, with the degree 
of LL. B. An ambition which took form at least ten years before this 
time was now realized and he was at once admitted as a practitioner in 
the state and supreme courts of Indiana and also in the federal courts. 




ARTHUR H. MEYER 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 319 

Bringing to his profession a mind trained under direction of some of the 
brightest educators of Indiana, and sharpened by actual contact with the 
busy world, Mr. Meyer has made a good start and has entered upon a 
career that gives promise, as the years pass, of increasing usefulness to 
himself and society. He recognizes that the young lawyer of today has 
many advantages not possessed by those of generations past, and while it is 
a profession in which a constant testing and sifting process is going on, 
nevertheless the survival of the fittest is to be observed here, as in every 
other department of life, and the young man who denies himself for years 
to obtain the best education the land aflfords is very likely to be found 
among the survivors. The same energy and persistence that store the mind 
with practical knowledge may generally be depended upon to land their 
possessor somewhere near the top of the ladder. Mr. Meyer is a logical 
thinker, a close observer and student, a good speaker, and has those genial 
qualities that make friends wherever their possessor is known. 

The principles of the democratic party receive his support as those prin- 
ciples most conducive to the permanent welfare of a republican form of 
government. His religious faith is in harmony with the Evangelical church, 
whose teachings early appealed to his heart and mind. Mr. Meyer is un- 
married and makes his home with his parents. His friends and associates 
at law are confident that in the years to come he will be able "to give a 
good account of himself" and that by word and example he will always 
represent whal he feels to be just and true. 



H. F. RIECHMANN. 



One of the young men who has won a place among the financiers of 
Evansville is H. F. Riechmann, cashier of the West Side Bank, and a 
growing factor in financial and business circles of one of the principal 
cities in the Ohio valley. He is a native of Evansville, bom February 
i8, 1877. His father, Frederick Riechmann, was born in Germany but 
was married in Evansville to Anna Harmeyer. Eight children were bom 
to them, five of whom are living, namely: Anna, now Mrs. Benjamin 
Bosse; Mayme; H. F., the subject of this review; August, of Evansville; 
and George, also of Evansville. 

Frederick Riechmann entered the grocery business upon taking up 
his residence at Evansville and continued in that line of trade during all 
of his active life, investing also in real estate. He was a highly respected 
and public-spirited citizen. In politics he adhered to the principles of the 
democratic party and was a candidate for the city council but was not 
elected. He was a consistent member of the German Lutheran church and 
his death, in 1899, at the age of fifty-five years, when he was in the prime 
of life, was greatly deplored by many friends and well-wishers. He was 



320 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

a man of high ideals and one who deserved the esteem of a community 
that recognized in him a citizen whose work and character appealed to 
their highest regard. The father of Mrs. Riechmann was a pioneer of 
Indiana and settled in Dubois county. Mr. and Mrs. Riechmann reared 
their children under the protection of a kindly home whose influence has 
continued as a benediction through after years. 

The subject of this review received his education in the public schools 
of Evansville and gained his first experience in business under his father. 
He continued for a number of years in the grocery business and then for 
two years acted as traveling salesman for furniture houses of Evansville. 
Wider acquaintance with the world broadened his views and prepared him 
to discharge acceptably the responsibility to which he was invited as assist- 
ant cashier of the West Side Bank. Three years ago he was advanced 
to cashier, succeeding H. H. Ogden. He filled that position to the satis- 
faction of officers and directors of the bank and has assisted materially 
in increasing the scope and popularity of the institution. He is treasurer 
of the West Side Building, Loan & Savings Association and also director 
of the Globe-Bosse- World Furniture Company, the West Side Real Estate 
& Insurance Company, and is a stockholder in several banks and corpor- 
ations of the city. 

Mr. Riechmann is a democrat but has devoted his attention to business 
rather than politics and has gained a reputation as a conservative young 
business man of good judgment and high character, giving every assurance 
of a successful and helpful career. There is no better illustration of the 
effect of right training and correct principles in the development of a use- 
ful life than is presented in this record. 



ARTHUR C. KARGES. 



Among the young men of Evansville who have demonstrated their 
ability to manage large interests may be named Arthur C. Karges, general 
manager of the Evansville Sash & Door Company. He was bom at Blue 
Grass, Iowa, on the 5th of May, 1881, where his parents resided for some 
years, later returning to Evansville. He is a son of Henry Karges, who 
came to the United States from Germany previous to the Civil war and 
engaged in the grocery business at Evansville. The mother of our subject 
before her marriage was Miss Gleichman, a native of Evansville and of 
German descent. Henry Karges did not confine his attention entirely to 
the grocery trade, but was one of the projectors of the old Hedrich Hotel 
and was a very active and energetic man in the earlier days of Evans- 
ville. He was called away from earthly duties and responsibilities as 
also was his wife when the son was about sixteen years of age, and from 
that time Arthur C. Karges has depended upon his own exertions for ad- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 321 

vancement. However, even as a boy he was the fortunate possessor of a 
stout heart and a desire to lead a life that would be a credit not only to 
himself but to his friends and associates. Any young man starting with 
this determination is almost absolutely certain to win. For a number of 
years he was in the employ of the Indiana Stove Works. 

In 1906 Mr. Karges became connected with the Evansville Sash & 
Door Company as bookkeeper and was advanced until in January, 1910, 
he was made general manager for the company in this city. The Evans- 
ville Sash & Door Company is a branch of the Anson & Hixon Sash & 
Door Company of Merrill, Wisconsin, one of the largest concerns of the 
kind in the country. While only a limited amount of manufacturing is 
carried on at the Evansville plant, a very extensive supply of the finished 
product is here accumulated for distribution over a wide territory in Illi- 
nois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and 
Florida. Three salesmen represent the house upon the road and the growth 
of the business from this point has fully kept pace with that in other lines 
since the plant was established at Evansville. 

Mr. Karges has a sister, Lillian, and two brothers, Henry and Albert, 
who are also living in this city. Although his experience has been limited 
to a few years in the business to which he is devoting his attention, he 
has gained the confidence of his associates and in the responsible position 
he occupies has shown an ability which gives promise of a capacity to meet 
any emergency that may arise. His career has shovm steady advance- 
ment and he is the possessor of the characteristics that command honor 
and respect wherever they are known. 



JOSEPH A. SCHENK, SR. 

Among the native residents of Vanderburg county who have attained 
prosperity and well earned independence as a farmer is Joseph A. Schenk, 
Sr. Mr. Schenk has engaged in general farming ever since his early man- 
hood and by his industry and good management he has acquired a property 
that year by year increases in value and produces an annual revenue that 
is the result of skill and well applied labor. 

He was born in German township January 4, 1850, and is a son of 
Adam and Susanna (Gonz) Schenk. The father was a native of West 
Farland, Germany, and served in the German army, but being ambitious 
of advancing and perceiving that there was little opportunity for a young 
man without financial resources, in the old country, he decided to seek 
his fortune elsewhere and early in the '40s he came to America and located 
in this county. Here his early dreams of independence were realized. He 
became a successful farmer and instilled into his children those principles 
of energy and perseverance that are so important in the accomplishment 
of any worthy aim. 



322 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

The subject of this review was reared under favorable conditions and 
early became inbued with the idea that success is gained through self- 
reliance. He was educated in the common schools and as a young man 
was one of the most energetic farmers in the neighborhood. He is the 
fortunate owner of a farm of two hundred and fifty acres, part of which 
he has cleared and brought to a high state of cultivation. His farm is 
provided with a commodious and confortable residence, good barns and 
outbuildings, and is one of the most desirable in this region. 

On August 13, 1878, Mr. Schenk was united in marriage to Miss Cath- 
erine Schoentrup, a daughter of John and Adeline Schoentrup. Unto Mr. 
and Mrs. Schenk eleven children have been bom: Rosa, wife of Anthony 
Gerard ; John ; Lulu ; Columbus ; and Cecilia, who are now living ; and Annie, 
Mary, Henry, Joseph, Albert and Adolph, who are deceased. 

Mr. and Mrs. Schenk are both active members of the German Catholic 
church and are conscientious in the discharge of the duties which they 
owe to their neighbors and the community where they have so long made 
their home. Mr. Schenk votes with the democratic party. He has in- 
herited many of the sturdy characteristics of his father, among them his 
fidelity to his family, which is one of the important elements in establish- 
ing a home and thus forming a basis for civilized society. 



ROBERT A. BRENNAN. 

Success has usually attended the pathway of Robert A. Brennan, a 
well known real-estate man of Evansville, who is a native of Cincinnati. 
His parents, Michael and Elizabeth Brennan, were both born and reared 
in Dublin, Ireland, and on emigrating to the new world settled in Cincin- 
nati about 1830. The father died when their son Robert was an infant 
and the mother afterward married James Tyrrell. They removed with the 
family to Kentucky, settling on a farm near Lexington. At the usual 
age Robert A. Brennan was sent to the country schools near his home 
but when a lad of twelve years he ran away. The Civil war was then in 
progress and, stirred by the events which were so rapidly shaping history 
in those days, he joined the Seventh Ohio Cavalry and was given a posi- 
tion in the quartermaster's department at Camp Nelson, Kentucky, serving 
from the fall of 1863 until the fall of 1865. After leaving Camp Nelson 
Mr. Brennan returned home and resumed work upon the farm but in 
1868 came to Evansville and has since been identified with commercial in- 
terests. He first entered the employ of Sweetser, Caldwell & Company, 
wholesale dry goods merchants, whom he represented upon the road as a 
traveling salesman for fifteen years. He devoted the succeeding four years 
to the conduct of a country store at Poseyville, Indiana, after which he 
came to Evansville and opened a department store. When he closed out 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 323 

that business he turned his attention to real estate and in this, as in all 
of his other ventures, has been successful. He is a believer in the old 
adage that honesty is the best policy and he also believes in the religion 
of hard work and close application if success would be attained. 

In 1873 Mr. Brennan was married, in Evansville, to Miss Cora A. 
Messick, a daughter of Captain J. W. and Sarah Messick. Her father won 
his title in command of Company A, Forty-second Indiana Volunteer In- 
fantry. He was captured at the battle of Chickamauga and held as a 
prisoner of war for seventeen months. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Brennan were 
bom two children but they lost their son, Harry S., at the age of sixteen years. 
Their daughter, Bessie, became the wife of Ernest Bishop and died a few 
years after her marriage, leaving a son, Bobbie Brennan Bishop, who 
was reared by and is now with Mr. and Mrs. Brennan. 

In politics Mr. Brennan has always been a democrat and without de- 
sire for office. He is a past chancellor of the Knights of Pythias lodge, 
past master in the Woodmen lodge, a past grand in the Independent Order 
of Odd Fellows and a member of Elks Lodge No. 116, of Evansville. His 
official preferment in fraternal organizations indicates his popularity with 
his fellow members and his loyalty to the principles for which they stand. 
He is a believer in the golden rule and thinks it much better policy to 
laugh that the world may laugh with you rather than to weep alone. His 
disposition is jovial, his manner cordial and genial and the circle of his 
friends is almost coextensive with the circle of his acquaintances. 



WILLIAM G. DOWNS, D. D. S. 

Dr. William G. Downs, successfully practicing dentistry in Evansville 
since 1896, was born in Boonville, Indiana, August i, 1871, a son of 
Thomas and Lydia M. (WilHams) Downs. His father was bom in Liver- 
more, Kentucky, in the year 1834, and the mother, a native of Boonville, 
Indiana, was born in 1840. Mr. Downs engaged in the milling business 
and in general merchandising in Boonville for a number of years, becom- 
ing a prominent and influential citizen there. He died in 1893 but the 
mother still lives in her native city. 

William G. Downs attended the public schools of Boonville and Evans- 
ville, and the University of Ohio at Cincinnati, and is a graduate of Van- 
derbilt University, of Nashville, Tennessee. Preparing for the practice 
of dentistry he completed his course there in 1893 and through the follow- 
ing year was associated with Dr. E. C. Bailey, of this city. He then en- 
gaged in the practice of his profession independently at Huntingburg, 
Indiana, from 1894 until 1896, returning in the latter year to Evansville, 
where he opened and has since conducted an office. In the intervening 
period of fourteen years he has built up a good practice, keeping in touch 



324 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

at all times with modern methods and the most advanced ideas of the pro- 
fession. He has the mechanical skill, the scientific knowledge and the busi- 
ness discernment without which success in the dental profession is never 
attained. 

In 1894 Dr. Downs was united in marriage to Miss Anna Wilson, of 
Louisville, a daughter of John T. Wilson, a prominent horse man of that 
city. Unto Dr. and Mrs. Downs has been bom a son, William G., whose 
birth occurred in 1897. The parents are members of Grace Presbyterian 
church and in his political views the Doctor is a republican. He has served 
as deputy state oil inspector for four years, but otherwise has held no 
public office. He is well known in fraternal circles, serving now as mas- 
ter of Evansville Lodge, No. 64, F. & A. M., of Evansville, and also as 
deputy grand chancellor of the Knights of Pythias. In strictly professional 
lines he is connected with the State Dental Society and the Tri-State Dental 
Society, and his conscientious service in the field of his chosen profession 
has gained him recognition as one of its prominent representatives. 



FRANZ R. CADEN. 



Franz R. Caden, deceased, will long be remembered as one of the 
public-spirited men of Evansville and also as one of the largest stone con- 
tractors of the country. He was born in Saxony, Germany, February 29, 
1836, and received his education in the public schools of his native land. 
He was a son of William Caden, who came with his family to America in 
1850. The father was a quarryman in Germany and after arriving in the 
United States he bought quarries at Buena Vista, Ohio, which he operated 
with the assistance of his sons. 

Franz R. Caden was thus inducted into a vocation to which he devoted 
his life and in which he became eminently successful. After President 
Lincoln's call for troops in 1861 he enlisted in the Indiana Volunteers and 
served one and one-half years in the army, receiving his discharge on ac- 
count of wounds. In the meantime he had become interested in quarries 
at Hadley, Kentucky, and, locating at Evansville, he became junior member 
of the firm of Albecker & Caden, which in the course of years gained a 
wide reputation on account of the large contracts taken in many parts of 
the country. The business at Evansville was originally located at the 
corner of Second Avenue and Division street, but later the yards were 
moved to the spot where the Manufacturers building now stands. The 
partners continued together until the death of Mr. Albecker, after which 
Mr. Caden assumed complete charge. A few years ago the firm was in- 
corporated as the Caden Stone Company and continues on the same broad 
lines that were followed by its founders. They supplied the stone for 
many public and private buildings in Evansville and in principal cities of 




*^B^ 



FRANZ R. CADEN 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 327 

the Union. Among its large contracts was the capitol of the state of 
Pennsylvania at Harrisburg and there appeared to be no contract that was 
too large for this firm. 

On the 7th of March, 1864, Mr. Caden was married in Cincinnati, Ohio, 
to Miss Nancy Boldman, who is still living at the age of sixty-nine years 
of age. She spent the winter of 1909-10 in California, but continues to 
make her home in Evansville. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Caden eight children 
were born, of whom five are still living: Laura; Albert, vice president of the 
Caden Stone Company, who is married and has a daughter, Frances R., 
now five years of age; Dora, now Mrs. Edward Greiner; Anna, now Mrs. 
Edward Beck, formerly the wife of WiUiam Winstroth, who died leaving 
a daughter Mary then two years old but now thirteen ; and Walter, who is 
also associated with the Caden Stone Company. 

Mr. Caden was a man of large business capacity and always proved 
equal to any emergency which appeared in a business that grew to large 
proportions. He was a good judge of human nature and an able manager 
of men. While he did not possess the advantages of collegiate training, 
he readily acquired knowledge by contact with others. Some one has said 
that intelligent men of business are the most sensible men in the world, 
and this saying was exemplified in the life of Mr. Caden. He was coura- 
geous, self-reliant and energetic in a high degree, and he had few equals and 
probably no superiors in the country in his special Hne of work. 

He was always ready to lend a willing hand to assist any movement 
that had for its object the advancement of the welfare of his adopted city. 
He was a strong believer in the platform of the republican party and for 
two terms he occupied a seat in the city council. While his business in- 
terests absorbed most of his time, he devoted considerable attention tQ 
Masonry and was a member of the blue lodge, chapter and commandery 
and at the time of his death was the oldest Mason in years of member- 
ship in the city. Mr. Caden was in many respects built upon a larger scale 
than we ordinarily meet with in men and if. as has been claimed, the object 
of our earthly existence is the development of upright character it may 
truly be said that in an important degree his was a successful life. 



EDWIN WALKER, M. D.. PH. D. 



Dr Edwin Walker, a distinguished representative of the medical pro- 
fession in Evansville, and a successful medical educator, was bom in this 
city which is still his place of residence. May 6, 1853. and is a repre- 
sentative of one of its oldest and most prominent families. His paternal 
grandfather, William Walker, was in early life a resident of Salem New 
Jersey, and near the town there still stands what is known as the Walker 
tree under which he is said to have had his camp with a company of 



328 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

soldiers who took part in the war of 1812 against England. Removing 
westward with his family, he lived for a short time in Cincinnati, Ohio, 
and then came to Evansville in 1835. When war with Mexico was de- 
clared he raised a company of volunteers and was killed at the battle of 
Buena Vista, in a charge at the Mexican lancers. He fell with many 
wounds. His wife bore the maiden name of Catherine Tyler and was in 
early life a resident of Philadelphia. Their four sons, James T., George 
B., John T., and William H., also spent the greater part of their lives in 
Evansville. 

The eldest son, James T. Walker, arrived in this city in 1835. He 
was a lawyer by profession and served in the state legislature in 1844. He 
married Ann Charlotte Burtis, a daughter of Jesse Burtis, who was born 
in Vanderburg county, where she spent her entire life. George B. Walker, 
the second son, became a physician and a prominent member of a num- 
ber of medical societies. He was one of the most active of the founders 
of the medical college of Evansville which flourished for several years, 
was dean of the institution and professor of obstetrics. He obtained his 
professional training in the Ohio Medical College, while extensive reading 
and research constantly broadened his knowledge in the field of his chosen 
profession. During the Civil war he served for three years as surgeon 
in various hospitals and was afterward president of the city board of 
health of Evansville for several years. His success, however, was not meas- 
ured alone in the terms of his profession, as his activity extended to other 
fields. He became a director of the Evansville & Crawfordsville Railroad and 
was a director of the Evansville Branch State Bank. That he was not 
without influence in political circles is indicated by the fact that he was 
a delegate to the convention which nominated Franklin Pierce. He mar- 
ried Elizabeth Clark, and died September 6. 1887. John T. Walker, the 
third son, became a member of the medical profession and acted as surgeon 
of the Twenty-fifth Indiana Infantry in the Civil war. His son, William 
H. Walker, was adjutant and another son, Jesse W. Walker, was major 
in the same regiment. His children are all deceased now. William H. 
Walker, the fourth son, was also prominent in city affairs and did not a 
little toward shaping the public policy and molding the destiny of Evans- 
ville. He acted as mayor of the city at one time and for a number of years 
was county auditor. Through his connection with public interests he left 
and indelible impression upon the history of the county. His children have 
all removed from Evansville; a daughter of William Walker was Mrs. 
Hannah Welbom, the grandmother of Dr. James York Welbom. 

In the family of James T. Walker, the elder son of William Walker, 
there were two sons, James T. Walker, Jr., and Edwin Walker, whose 
name introduces this review. The former is an attorney at law of the firm 
of Walker & Walker, his partner being Henry B. Walker. He, too, has 
figured in connection with public affairs, serving for about ten years as 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 329 

school trustee while at the present writing, in 1910, he is a member of 
the board of safety. 

Dr. Edwin Walker, pursuing his studies through consecutive grades, 
was graduated from the high school of Evansville with the class of 1869, 
and afterward devoted two years to a classical course in Hanover College 
at Hanover, Indiana. He began the study of medicine in the office of 
Dr. George B. Walker in this city in 1871, and at the same time attended 
three courses of lectures in the Evansville Medical College, from which 
he was graduated in the class of 1874. Following his graduation he at 
once opened an office in Evansville and in the same year was appointed pro- 
fessor of anatomy by his alma mater. In 1877 he attended a course of 
lectures in New York and two years later again entered the university in 
that city, from which he was graduated with honors, being awarded the 
prize for the greatest proficiency in diseases of the nervous system. Re- 
turning to Evansville he was appointed professor of diseases of women 
and diseases of the nervous system in the medical college here. In 1883 
he attended a course of lectures at the New York Polyclinic and pursued 
a special course of study in diseases of women and diseases of the throat 
under the direction of Professor Bosworth. Two years later he spent two 
months in attending hospital clinics and in the fall went to Europe, where 
he remained until August, 1886, devoting his time when abroad to the study of 
diseases of women and surgery, receiving instruction from eminent mem- 
bers of the profession in Berlin, Vienna, London and Edinburgh. Since 
determining to make the practice of medicine his life work he has spent much 
time in studying in further preparation for the onerous duties which de- 
volve upon the physician. His success is marked because his knowledge 
is comprehensive, his power of analysis keen and his diagnosis therefore 
correct. Moreover, he is most conscientious in the discharge of his pro- 
fessional duties and his ability has won him place in the foremost ranks 
of the medical profession in Indiana. From 1876 until 1878 he served as 
county physician and with others was active in establishing the City Hos- 
pital, in 1882; the Walker Sanitarium, in 1884, which he has since con- 
ducted; and the first training school for nurses in Evansville in 1887. 
Hanover College recognized his ability in 1888 by conferring upon him the 
degree of Doctor of Philosophy. He keeps in touch with the advance- 
ment of the medical fraternity through his membership in the Vander- 
burg County Medical Society, the Indiana State Medical Society, of which 
he has been president, also president of the Mississippi Valley Medical 
Society and the American Medical Association. 

Dr. Walker was married in Evansville, in 1880, to Miss Capitola Hud- 
speth, who was bom in Boonville, Indiana, in 1859, and is a daughter 
of George and Margaret (Smith) Hudspeth, for many years prominent 
residents of this city. The record which Dr. Walker has made in the field 
of professional service is one which reflects credit upon a name that has 



330 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

long been an honored one in Vanderburg county. Moreover his ex- 
periences in life, travel and reading have placed him in that class where 
the most intellectual men of the city are wont to gather in the discussion 
of questions of significant and vital interest. 



JOHN WILLIAM GLEICHMAN. 

John William Gleichman is treasurer of the Anchor Supply Company, 
of Evansville, with which business he has been connected since its organi- 
zation. It is recognized as one of the important manufacturing and com- 
mercial interests of the city. Throughout his entire life Mr. Gleichman 
has never feared that laborious attention to detail upon which success 
largely rests. His ability to coordinate forces and to recognize the value 
of each opportunity has been an element in the substantial advancement 
of an enterprise that has long been one of the profitable concerns of Van- 
derburg county. Evansville numbers him among her native sons, his birth 
having here occurred February 4, 1856. His parents were John M. and 
Emilie Gleichman, both of whom were natives of Germany, whence they 
came to the new world in early hfe. The father was for many years en- 
gaged in merchandising and in the insurance business in this city, and was 
numbered among its respected and valued residents. He died in February, 
1909, having for only a few months survived his wife, who passed away 
in November, 1908. Five of their seven children are yet living and are 
residents of Evansville. Our subject comes of long-lived ancestry and 
very few families can claim the distinction of two golden weddings, but his 
grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. William Rahm, Sr., celebrated their golden 
wedding May 30, 1884, and his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John M. Gleichman, 
celebrated theirs on the ist of January, 1905. 

John William Gleichman left the high school at the age of fifteen years 
to become a clerk in the store of William Rahm & Son, the partners being 
his grandfather and uncle. They conducted a general mercantile estab- 
lishment, in which he acted as salesman for five years. He next became 
bookkeeper for Matthew Dalzell, a wholesale grocer, with whom he re- 
mained for three years, when he accepted a position of bookkeeper and 
manager with John J. Sinzich, conducting a boat, awning and tent business. 
He acted in that capacity until January, 1894, when he joined with Louis 
A. Daus and Peter Emrich in organizing the Anchor Supply Company, 
which bought out Mr. Sinzich. The business was incorporated January 
13, 1894, with Mr. Gleichman as secretary and treasurer. He has been 
identified with business interests in this block for thirty-three years and 
thirty years in the same building. His success is attributable to close at- 
tention, unfaltering perseverance and energy that never flags. He has 
never been afraid to work and when the present company was organized 




J. W. GLEICHMAN 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 333 

each partner had specific duties, Mr. Daus managing the awning work, 
while Mr. Gleichman found his time fully occupied with the office work 
and the sales department. Gradually the business has been developed 
along specific hues until the trade of the house is now extensive and the 
income derived therefrom substantial and gratifying. 

On the 13th of April, 1881, Mr. Gleichman was married to Miss Laura 
A. Myers, a daughter of Jacob Myers, of Evansville, and unto them have 
been born two sons and a daughter : Oliver C., who is connected with the 
'Anchor Supply Company; Beulah, now the wife of Ernest E. Lee, who is 
in the government service, being assistant superintendent of mechanical 
and electrical engineering of the lock and dam construction of the Panama 
canal; and William A., who at the age of eighteen years is attending busi- 
ness college. 

Mr. Gleichman is prominent in the Masonic order, with which he has 
been affiliated for fifteen years. He has attained high rank and has crossed 
the sands of the desert with the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine. He belongs 
to both the subordinate lodge and uniform rank of the Knights of Pythias, 
and was a captain in the latter. For twenty-four years he has been secre- 
tary of the local organization of the Royal Arcanum and is a very promi- 
nent, helpful and valued member in these diflferent associations. He is 
equally loyal to his professions as a member of the Methodist church and 
is a stanch advocate of the republican party. He finds his chief recreation 
in fishing and an occasional vacation serves to counterbalance the pressure 
of continued business cares. Although he started out in life empty-handed 
at the age of fifteen years, he has attained enviable success in the business 
world, and, moreover, his business probity stands as an unquestioned fact 
in his record. 



TRAVIS D. MUNDY. 



Travis D. Mundy, engaged in the grocery business at No. 701 John 
street, was born on a farm in Warrick county, near Boonville, Indiana, 
November 7, 1864, and is the second child of Middleton K. and Eliza 
(Rhodes) Mundy, who were also natives of Warrick county. The father 
died while residing upon a farm in that county, in 1906, and the niother 
afterward came to Evansville, where she passed away in the spring of 
1910. In their family were five children: Ida, now the wife of William 
B. Davis, a resident of Glasgow, Kentucky ; Nellie, the wife of William M. 
Fisher, who is engaged in the real-estate business in Stanley, New Mexico; 
Andrew and Minnie, both deceased. The former died in 1890 at the age 
of twenty-five. Being in poor health, he went to Texas for a change of 
climate but in 1890 returned to Evansville and passed away in St. Mary's 
hospital. Minnie became the wife of Charles Webb and since her death 
her son Oscar has lived with his uncle, Mr. Mundy of this review. 



334 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In the common schools Travis D. Mundy began his education, which 
he continued in the high school of Boonville and in the State Normal 
School at Terre Haute, where he spent two terms. Taking up the pro- 
fession of teaching, he followed that work through the winter months and 
attended school in the spring and fall. For thirteen years he continued 
teaching in the district schools of Warrick and of Vanderburg counties, 
after which he took the civil service examination, being one of the three 
who received the highest marks among the competitors at that time. He 
was afterward one of the first to receive an appointment as clerk in the 
postoffice of Evansville under Jack Nolan, postmaster, remaining for eight 
years in the postoffice, the last four years under the administration of 
James D. Parvin. At the end of that time he turned his attention to the 
grocery business, which has since claimed his time and energies. He 
bought out the stock of I. J. Neal on Walnut and Canal streets, remaining 
in that location for two years, after which he purchased his present loca- 
tion at No. 701 John street. He carries a large and well selected line of 
staple and fancy groceries, constantly replenishing with new stock and 
keeping on hand the best that the market affords. This fact, combined 
with the reliability of his business methods, constitutes the basis of the 
prosperity which he has attained as one of the merchants of Evansville. 
From 1907 until 1910 he was also interested in the Sargeant Coal Com- 
pany of Evansville, of which he was secretary and treasurer, but in tiie 
latter year he disposed of his interest. 

In 1888 Mr. Mundy was united in marriage to Miss Ella Still, a daugh- 
ter of Jesse Still, a farmer of Warrick county, Indiana, now deceased. 
The mother makes her home with Mrs. Mundy. In his political views Mr. 
Mundy is a democrat yet does not hesitate to cast an independent ballot 
when he believes that the best interests of the community will be conserved 
thereby. He belongs to the Odd Fellows society and to the National 
Union lodge of Evansville and both he and his wife are members of the 
Olive Street Presbyterian church. Their interest is in those things which 
work for good for the individual and for the community. Along the legi- 
timate lines of trade Mr. Mundy has achieved success, depending solely 
upon his own efforts for advancement, his diligence and reliability con- 
stituting the salient features in the progress he has made since entering busi- 
ness circles. 



S. WYLE LITTLE. 



For more than a half century S. Wyle Little was a resident of Evans- 
ville, and practically his entire life was spent in Indiana. He stood, there- 
fore, as a splendid example of its progressive citizenship and his life record 
gave proof of the fact that America, as Emerson has declared, is another 
name for opportunity. Of Scotch-Irish lineage, Mr. Little was born in 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 335 

Chester district of South CaroHna, May 17, 1832, and was the youngest 
son in a family of seven children. He was about three years of age when 
his father came with the family to Indiana, establishing the home near 
Bloomington, in Monroe county. He was not satisfied there, however, and 
went to Iowa, where he remained until 1853, when he returned to Indiana, 
becoming a resident of Princeton. 

The schools of Indiana and of Iowa afforded S. Wyle Little his educa- 
tional privileges, and by improving these he qualified for the duties of busi- 
ness life. In 1856, at the age of twenty-four years, he left his father's 
home in Princeton and came to Evansville, where he became a partner 
in the old Canal Flour mill, there remaining for several years. The out- 
break of the Civil war, however, temporarily terminated his business ac- 
tivities, for, with patriotic ardor, he enlisted in the navy, serving in the 
flotilla on the Mississippi river. When the term of his enlistment had ex- 
pired he returned home and from that time forward until his death was 
associated with commercial and industrial interests in Evansville. He be- 
gan manufacturing staves and shingles, and, broadening the scope of his 
business as he found opportunity, he built a saw mill in 1871, operating 
it successfully until it was destroyed by fire in 1880. He then rebuilt the 
mill on a much larger scale, but again conflagration claimed his business 
as its victim, not only the mill but also a large amount of lumber being 
thus destroyed in 1888. A short time previous he had purchased a large 
tract of timber land in Pike county, from which he cut the logs, shipping 
them to the mill in Evansville. 

Seeing that coal had been found in that vicinity, he decided to investi- 
gate and on the 4th of July of that year discovered that his property was 
underlaid with a good coal vein. A small shaft was sunk in August and 
a mine that has since proved a paying proposition was opened. The works 
were greatly enlarged and more men employed, and with the development 
of the business Mr. Little became one of the foremost coal operators in 
this section of the state. In 1890 a depot was built on his place along the 
track of the Evansville & Indianapolis Railroad, thus establishing a station 
for the use of the men. Mr. Little opened a general store there, houses 
began to be erected and a schoolhouse was built, and almost as if by 
magic a small city sprung up. In honor of its founder and principal bene- 
factor it was called Littles. Mr. Little ever had the welfare of the town 
at heart and cooperated in many movepients for its improvement. In 
1893 he built and presented to the town a model church. From the time 
that coal was discovered upon his place he conducted a profitable business 
in the development of the mine and the shipment of the product. In 1894 
the S. W. Little Coal Company was organized with Mr. Little as the 
secretary and general manager. This company maintains two offices in 
Evansville and owns twenty-seven hundred acres of coal lands, and is 
operating several fuel producing mines. During his long residence in 
Evansville Mr. Little earned a reputation for business integrity that was 



336 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

most enviable, and a proof of his enterprise and intelligent business methods 
was found in the success which crowned his labors. 

In 1870 Mr. Little was married to Miss Mary E. Macer, of Evansville, 
a daughter of Thomas Macer, who lived in this city for many years. 
Unto them were born two sons: Dr. Charles S. Little, who is in charge 
of the mine at Blackburn; and Harry W. Little, who is president and 
general manager of the coal company. 

Qualified to wear the Grand Army button, S. Wyle Little never ceased 
to feel a deep interest in his army comrades, and was a valued member 
of the Evansville post. He also belonged to the Walnut Street Presbyterian 
church and guided his life by its principles. His record not only proves 
that success is ambition's answer, but also that prosperity and an honor- 
able name may be won simultaneously. He passed away September 27, 
1907, after reaching the seventy-fifth milestone on life's journey, leaving 
to his family not only the substantial rewards of his labor and keen sagac- 
ity, but also the priceless heritage of an example that is indeed worthy of 
emulation. 



MICHAEL BAUER. 



Among the honored citizens of Vanderburg county Michael Bauer oc- 
cupies a favored position. For more than forty years he has engaged in 
the mercantile business here and also with great success as a veterinary 
surgeon. He is a man of substantial character — one who gives strength 
and stability to a community. He was born in German township, in Feb- 
ruary, 1838, the son of Jacob and Elizabeth Bauer, who were both natives 
of Germany and came to America, the former in 183 1 and the latter in 
1832, with their respective parents. The Bauer family located at Evans- 
ville in 1834, remaining there for about six months, at the end of which 
time they moved to Center township, this county, and rented a farm. In 
1837 the head of the family entered one hundred and twenty acres of land 
in German township, which he at once began to improve, erecting a com- 
fortable house, barn and outbuildings. There he continued until his death, 
which occurred December i, 1858. Mrs. Bauer survived her husband 
more than thirty years and was called to her rest in December, 1891. 

Michael Bauer, the subject of this sketch, was reared upon a farm and 
educated at a neighborhood school. He early exhibited talent for veterin- 
ary research and even as a young man was sought by neighbors when the 
animals upon their farms, from accident or otherwise, demanded immediate 
attention. As a veterinarian he has always been a success, having been 
born with a talent which made the treatment of animals to him quite an 
easy affair. At twenty-eight years of age he bought a farm of one hundred 
and twenty acres, which he operated for a year and then sold to his brother. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 337 

He moved to the spot on which Darmstadt has since been built, bought 
an acre of land and erected a large store building where he has ever since 
conducted general merchandise business. In the course of an active life 
he has become the owner of over two hundred acres of well improved 
land in Scott township. He also owns a fine farm residence in Evans- 
ville and his business returns him a handsome yearly income. 

In 1865 Mr. Bauer was united in marriage to Miss Barbara Daudistel, 
a daughter of John and Katherine Daudistel, both of whom came to this 
country from Germany in 1854. Seven children have been bom to Mr. 
and Mrs. Bauer: Lizzie, now Mrs. Charles Inderrieden of Boonville, In- 
diana; Katherine, now Mrs. Ed Meyer, of Evansville; Mena, now Mrs. 
F. W. Miller, of Darmstadt, Indiana; Annie, now Mrs. J. Wesley Stork, 
also a resident of Darmstadt; J. H. Michael, a sketch of whom appears 
elsewhere in this book ; Gusta, now Mrs. Casper Grimm, of Darmstadt ; and 
Julia, who died in infancy. 

Mr. and Mrs. Bauer are members of the German Evangelical church. 
He is a lifelong member of the democratic party but has never sought for 
office himself, ahhough he has served as trustee of Scott township for two 
terms and as road commissioner for several years. The progenitors of Mr. 
Bauer were men and women of high principle and sturdy industry. He 
has proven a worthy descendant of a nationality that has contributed largely 
to American citizenship and he perpetuates the family name with dignity 
and honor. 



JOHN H. M. BAUER. 



John H. M. Bauer, a merchant and veterinary surgeon of Scott town- 
ship, who in his business and profession is following in the footsteps of 
a worthy sire, was bom in Vanderburg county, April 9, 1877. He is the 
son of Michael Bauer, a record of whom appears elsewhere in this work, 
and Barbara (Daudistel) Bauer, the former a native of Indiana and the 
latter of Germany. 

The subject of this review passed his boyhood days at Darmstadt, this 
county, and attended the district schools there, later becoming a student 
in the public schools of Evansville. After leaving the latter he entered 
Lx)ckyear's Business College at Evansville, from which he was graduated 
March 25, 1898. After completing his education he returned home and 
continued in mercantile business with his father until he was twenty-nine 
years of age. From early years he was a student of the veterinary science 
under his father and as a practitioner, although pursuing other duties, 
he has been a marked success. In 1905 Mr. Bauer removed to Evansville 
and became connected with Harry Joseph in the clothing business, in which 
he continued for about six months. He then identified himself with 



338 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Vickery Brothers, grocers, but at the end of four years, in 1909, he re- 
turned to Darmstadt and has since been associated with his father in the 
mercantile business and also in a flourishing veterinary practice. 

On September 23, 1903, Mr. Bauer was united in marriage to Miss 
Louise Weddeking, a daughter of Charles and Louise Weddeking, the 
former of whom was born in Germany and the latter in Indiana. Two 
children have blessed this union: Raymond W. M., now five years of age; 
and Louise B., aged two years. 

Mr. and Mrs. Bauer are consistent members of the German Evangelical 
church of Darmstadt. In political affiliation Mr. Bauer is a democrat but 
he is a young man of broad views and his choice is not always limited to 
the ticket of the party which he supports in national affairs. Morally, 
socially and educationally he exercises a beneficent influence in the neigh- 
borhood and is now fairly launched upon what promises to be a long and 
useful career. 



ADAM B. SODE. 



Adam B. Sode, occupying a creditable position in the ranks of Evans- 
ville's leading business men, where he is successfully engaged in dealing 
in monuments, was born in Germany, November 18, 1858. Seven years 
later his parents, Henry and Catherine (Karges) Sode, came with thein 
family to the United States with Evansville as their destination. Here 
the father worked as a stone cutter, having previously learned the trade 
in his native land. That occupation claimed his attention until his death, 
which occurred in 1874. Seven years later his wife passed away in 1881. 
Their family numbered four sons and a daughter. Our subject's brother, 
A. Fred Sode, resided in New York city, while his sister, Mrs. Julia Gros- 
curth is the wife of John Groscurth, now of Evansville. 

Adam B. Sode well remembers events connected with the long journey 
across the Atlantic made when he was but seven years of age. Immediately 
after reaching this city he was sent to the public schools and when he had 
completed his education he worked for a short time in a chair factory. 
Indeed, his initial step in the business world was made when he was but a 
young lad. When fifteen years of age he became an apprentice in the stone- 
cutting business, to which he closely applied himself until his expert 
workmanship won wide recognition and constituted the basis of the suc- 
cess which has attended him since he started in business on his own ac- 
count. It was on the 15th of February, 1883, that he became the senior 
partner of the firm of Sode, Brikman & Karsch. The relation was main- 
tained for about twelve years, when, in September, 1895, he succeeded 
to the business which he has since conducted under his own name. He 
is one of the leading monument dealers in this part of the state, having 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 339 

built up a business of large proportions. He has turned out some of the 
finest work to be found in the cemeteries of the city, it being both artistic 
in finish and design. He has ever been prompt in executing orders and 
his honesty in business transactions in unassailable. 

In 1891 occurred the marriage of Mr. Sode to Miss Mary K. Baum, a 
daughter of Jacob Baum, who for many years, to the time of his death, was 
in the retail grocery business in Evansville. Mr. and Mrs. Sode now have 
one daughter, Ottilia, twelve years of age. The parents are members of 
St. Luke's church, and are prominent socially. Mr. Sode is a republican 
in his political views and fraternally is connected with the Woodmen of 
the World and with Lessing Lodge, A. F. & A. M. He is in thorough 
sympathy with the principles of the craft which he exemplifies in his life. 
His is the creditable record of a self-made man who has never held to 
any false standards ; who has always placed his dependence upon the sub- 
stantial qualities of industry, determination and reliability. Along these 
lines his success has been won and only words of good-will are said of 
him by those with whom he has had business relations. 



JOHN F. SHAFER. 



The dairy business is one of the flourishing industries of southern In- 
diana and it is in this business that John F. Shafer has attained a distinct 
success. As a boy he gained his first knowledge of farming operations 
and by practical application of the principles then acquired he has attained 
an independent position. He is also a live-stock dealer and is known as 
a good judge of live-stock. He is in close touch with the markets and 
is well informed as to the supply of stock in the county, its availability 
for market, the most convenient shipping points and all the details which 
go to make a wide-awake dealer. No man can know too much of the 
business he has chosen as his vocation and the subject of this review fully 
believes this and acts accordingly. Mr. Shafer is a native of Vanderburg 
county and was born in September, 1873. He was educated in the dis- 
trict schools and grew up in a home where the younger members of the 
family were taught habits of industry and where he learned many lessons 
that have been of constant assistance to him in his contact with the world. 
At the age of sixteen he began helping his father on the farm and ever 
since that time he has been intimately identified with various phases of 
farm life, including dairying and the successful handling of live-stock. 
Since 1902 he has confined his attention to the development of his dairy 
and the cattle business. He is the owner of a well kept farm of twenty 
acres in Knight township which contains a handsome residence, large bams 
and is provided with complete facilities to meet the requirements of the 
dairy business as it is known at the present time. 



340 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In 1898 Mr. Shafer was united in marriage to Miss Anna Boeke, a 
daughter of Henry Boeke, a farmer of Knight township. Mrs. Shafer 
has been known to her husband from her childhood, and she has proven 
to him indeed a blessing and has in an important degree aided, by her 
counsel and wise management, in forwarding the best interests of the 
family. Three children have been born of the union of Mr. and Mrs. 
Shafer: Talitha, Matilda and John Henry. 

Mr. and Mrs. Shafer are both members of the Presbyterian church 
and their aim is as nearly as possible to carry out the principles of the 
golden rule and thus to exemplify the teachings of the Great Master. Mr. 
Shafer is a republican and a member of the Woodmen of the World, hold- 
ing membership in Hickory Camp at McCuthanville. He is a self-made 
man and by perseverance and attention to duty from day to day has at- 
tained the position which he holds in his township as a man of high prin- 
ciple who always does as he promises, who is true to his friends, and who 
is ever ready to do anything in his power to advance the permanent wel- 
fare of the neighborhood. 



CRAWFORD BELL. 



Crawford Bell, who is remembered as one of the first prescription 
druggists of Evansville and a gentleman whose admirable character made 
a deep impress upon all who claimed his acquaintance, was bom in Ire- 
land in 1819 or 1820. On his mother's side he was of Scotch descent and 
the sturdy characteristics of the Scottish race were apparent in his life. 
She gave to her son her maiden name of Crawford. At eighteen years of 
age he came to Evansville upon the solicitation of his brother William, 
who had previously located in this city. Here he began as clerk in a drug 
store, but later he and his brother entered the drug business for themselves, 
the subject of this sketch taking charge of the prescription department, 
while his brother attended to other work in the store. He soon demon- 
strated unusual adaptability in a position that calls for constant exercise 
of watchfulness and discrimination. He gained many friends not only 
among patrons of the store but among physicians of the city, and by 
unanimous vote he was made an honorary member of the Vanderburg 
County Medical Society. This is an honor seldom accorded and is an in- 
dication of the confidence and esteem in which Mr. Bell was held by those 
who knew how to appreciate his talents. 

He was an ambitious and persevering man, who possessed an unim- 
peachable character and was actuated by the highest ideals. His life was 
largely controlled by the teachings of the Christian religion and he was a 
member of the Episcopal church. He was called from earthly scenes 
October 29, 1856, at the age of thirty-six years. His death, just as he was 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 343 

entering upon a highly successful career, was regarded as a distinct loss 
to the community, and the general expression of regret attested his worth 
in the city which he had adopted as his home. 

In 1846 Mr. Bell was united in marriage to Miss Mary E. Negley, a 
daughter of David and Martha (Lambert) Negley, who were then resid- 
ing on Pigeon creek. Mr. Negley was of old Pennsylvania Dutch stock 
and came to Indiana very early from that state. He built the first water 
power grist and saw mill in southern Indiana. This mill proved of great 
assistance to many people living in southern Indiana, southern Illinois and 
northern Kentucky, and its proved a good financial investment. He built a 
sawmiill on the opposite side of the stream and such was the demand upon 
it on account of the erection of new houses by incoming settlers that the 
mill was kept in operation night and day. He built a beautiful residence 
on Pigeon creek, where he resided until his death, which occurred in 1851, 
he having been recognized for years as one of the leading men in this part 
of the state. Mrs. Negley was a native of Kentucky and was married there 
before coming to this county. 

Two children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Crawford Bell : David ; and 
Jennie Crawford, who grew up to be a beautiful woman and was married 
to Edward Law, but is now deceased. She left four children : Mary Bell ; 
Sarah; John; and James, who is deceased. Mrs. Bell is now eighty-five 
years of age and, although her husband died fifty-four years ago, her 
recollection of him is almost as clear and she is as faithful to his memory 
as though he had been called from mortal view not more than a year ago. 
She has been a witness of a great transformation in a region where she 
was bom and where she has passed her life, and her store of reminiscences 
of early times would make a volume of surpassing interest. It is to the 
noble men and women of whom she is a worthy representative that the 
present generation owes the many blessings which are to be met with on 
every side, enhancing our happiness and revealing a world of utility and 
beauty which was unknown to the pioneers. 



CHARLES H. JOHANN. 

The name of Johann seems to be a synonym for business ability, enter- 
prise and progression in Evansville, where the firm of Albert Johann & 
Sons Company has made continuous progress since the establishment of 
the undertaking business here many years ago. The younger element as 
represented by the sons has continued the same reliable business policy in- 
stituted by the father and the patronage accorded them makes for success. 

He whose name introduces this review was bom in Evansville, July 
4, 1857, and at the usual age entered the public schools, where he passed 
through the consecutive grades in the acquirement of an education which 



344 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

well qualified him to become a strong factor in business circles. After put- 
ting aside his text-books he worked at the carpenter's trade for four years, 
and on the expiration of that period engaged in the planing mill business 
for four years. In 1884, upon the change of the firm of Albert Johann 
to Albert Johann & Sons Company, he was made secretary-treasurer and 
has so continued to the present time. In more recent years he and his 
brother have largely relieved the father of business cares and are now 
managing the business, bringing to its control powers of keen discern- 
ment and unabating energy which are ever basic elements in success. 

In 1899 was celebrated the marriage of Charles H. Johann and Miss 
Mary S. Wilson, a daughter of William Wilson, well known as a con- 
tractor of Louisville, Kentucky. They occupy a prominent position in 
the social circles of this city and their own home is justly celebrated for 
its warm-hearted and generous hospitality. 

Mr. Johann has always adhered to the political faith in which he was 
reared, for his matured judgment sanctions the policy of the republican 
party, believing that its principles are best adapted to good government. 
He has served four years as coroner of this county, and held the position 
of deputy United States Marshal for four years in this district. He is 
a valued member of several fraternal organizations, including the Degree 
of Honor, the Masonic order and the Modern Woodmen of America. In 
disposition he is kindly, in manner genial and courteous, and his strongly 
marked characteristics commend him to the friendly regard and confidence 
of all with whom he has been brought in contact. 



FRED KAUTZ. 



Fred Kautz, who for twenty-six years has been a resident of Evans- 
ville, has been engaged in the wholesale paper business since 1888 and in 
this connection has developed one of the important commercial enterprises 
of the city, extending the trade relations of the house until the business 
covers a wide territory. Success has followed as the logical sequence of 
his close application, keen business discernment and reliable methods; and 
his record is alike creditable to Germany and America, the land of his 
birth and the land of his adoption, A native of Germany, he was born 
April 30, 1850, a son of Frederick and Sarah (Kramp) Kautz, who were 
likewise of German birth and lineage. Their family numbered six chil- 
dren, four of whom are now living. The family left Germany for 
the United States in 1852, imbued with the hope of finding business 
conditions that would lead more rapidly to the attainment of success. A 
settlement was made in Cincinnati, where the father undertook the task 
of providing a home and competence for his family, but death intervened 
in 1859. His wife survived him for many years, passing away in 1902. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 345 

Fred Kautz was but two years of age when the voyage was made across 
the Atlantic, so that practically his entire life has been passed on American 
soil, and in youth he became imbued with the spirit of enterprise that has 
been the dominant factor in the upbuilding of the middle west. Necessity 
forced him into the business world when he was quite young, so that his 
educational advantages were limited. He began providing for his own 
support by working at the carriage painter's trade, which he followed al- 
together for twenty-three years, spending two decades of that time in Cin- 
cinnati and the remaining three years in Evansville, where he located in 
1884. He did not purpose to remain forever in the employ of others, 
however, and, ambitious to engage in business for himself, he wisely saved 
his earnings until his careful expenditure made it possible for him to en- 
gage in the wholesale paper business in 1888. He handles paper sacks, 
wrapping paper, paper buckets and other paper goods, having a large es- 
tablishment in the wholesale district of Evansville, for the venture, be- 
gun on a small scale, has proved profitable and the growth of the business 
has made it one of the important commercial interests of the city. 

On the 25th of August, 1875, Mr. Kautz was married to Miss Louisa 
Selbert, of Cincinnati, in which city the wedding was celebrated. Their 
home has been blessed with the presence of four daughters, Louisa, Edith, 
Norma and Lillian, the first named being now the wife of a Mr. Shelbom, 
of Evansville. 

The family are members of St. John's church and take an active inter- 
est in its work. Mr. Kautz belongs to the Travelers Protective Association, 
to the Court of Honor and to the Knights of Pythias lodge of Lexing- 
ton, Kentucky. His political views are in accord with the principles of 
the republican party, but political honors and emoluments have no attrac- 
tion for him. He prefers to concentrate his energies upon his business 
affairs and the record of his commercial activity is written in the tangible 
terms of profit. The consensus of public opinion places him not only 
with the successful men of Evansville but also among those whose business 
records have at all times been progressive and honorable. 



J. WESLEY STORK, M. D. 

The career of Dr. J. Wesley Stork presents a rare illustration of a 
young man who has followed in the footsteps of his father and has at- 
tained an enviable record in a community where he passed the earlier years 
of his life. He was born at Evansville, April 17, 1871, and is a son of 
Dr. Henry and Christine (Finke) Stork, the former of whom was a na- 
tive of Germany and the latter of the state of Kentucky. The father ar- 
rived in America with his parents, who left the familiar scenes of the 
fatherland behind them to seek more favorable conditions when he was 



346 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

eight years of age. The emigrant party landed at New Orleans and Mr. 
and Mrs. Stork came up the river to Evansville, where they remained about 
a month, the head of the family looking about for a favorable location. 
He finally selected a tract of one hundred and sixty acres of land in Du- 
bois county, Indiana, where the family took up its residence, and Mr. 
Stork, the grandfather of our subject, set about vigorously clearing away 
the trees and improving the land for farming purposes. 

There Henry Stork grew up and attended the public schools of the 
neighborhood, after which he became a student in a college at Cincin- 
nati, Ohio. Having decided to become a physician, he began the study of 
medicine and matriculated at Evansville Medical College, from which he 
was graduated with the class of 1878. He at once began practice at Hol- 
land, Indiana, and faithfully attended to the duties of his profession almost 
to the time of his death, which occurred in June, 1910. Several years be- 
fore his departure he was stricken with paralysis and at the end of two 
years suffered a second stroke which incapacitated him for active ser- 
vice and he lingered, an invalid, until called away. He served as post- 
master of Holland under Presidents Arthur and Roosevelt and it was 
due to his interest and influence that Holland now enjoys two mail de- 
liveries daily. He was a man of fine attainments and a citizen who did 
everything in his power to promote the welfare of others. In early man- 
hood he united with the German Methodist Episcopal church at Holland 
and remained to the end a beloved and loyal member of the church and a 
Christian both by practice and profession, he having early found that 
"peace which passeth understanding," and attained a personal conscious- 
ness of salvation. Mrs. Stork was called to her final rest in October, 1875, 
when the subject of this review was four years of age. 

Reared at Holland and educated in the public schools and under his 
father's capable guidance, J. Wesley Stork at the age of twenty years 
entered the Kentucky School of Medicine, at Louisville, Kentucky, from 
which he was graduated with the degree of M. D. in June, 1895. In August 
following he located at Darmstadt, Indiana, and began practice, bringing 
to his work a well trained mind and a fund of practical knowledge which 
have been of great assistance to him in the years that have since passed. 
Here he has gained a reputation which is by no means limited to the im- 
mediate neighborhood and has been acquired by years of patient study 
and practical application of the recognized principles in his profession. 

In October, 1899, Dr. Stork was united in marriage to Miss Johanna 
B. Bauer, a daughter of Michael and Barbara Bauer, the former a native 
of Indiana and the latter of Germany. Two children have been bom to 
Dr. and Mrs. Stork: Jesse M. H., now nine years of age; and Urban F. 
D., aged four years. The family occupies a fine large home beautifully 
located upon an acre of ground and showing every evidence of taste and 
refinement. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 347 

Dr. and Mrs. Stork are members of the Salem Evangelical church 
and he holds membership in Hooppole Camp, No. ii8, Woodmen of the 
World, of which he is council commander at the present time. He is iden- 
tified with the republican party and is a member of the Vanderburg County- 
Medical Society, the Indiana State Medical Society and the American 
Medical Association. He has inherited many characteristics of the suc- 
cessful medical practitioner; has a carefully selected library of the best 
medical works and is thoroughly informed as to the advancements in the 
healing art, which have been so marvelous during the past decade and 
promise even greater marvels in the years to come. As a natural leader 
in the community where he lives he occupies a prominent place and he 
never lowers the standard which he erected as a young man and which has 
made him a most useful citizen in the county where he has lived ever since 
his birth. 



ALBERT JOHANN. 



Albert Johann, the senior member of the Albert Johann & Sons Com- 
pany, was bom in Prussia, Germany, July i6, 1831, and was the oldest child 
of Charles W. and Lisetta Johann. In the year 1848, at the age of seven- 
teen years, he left his native country and on the loth of May arrived in 
Evansville where he has now made his home for sixty-two years. There 
are few who have resided for a longer period in this city, and none who 
during so extended a time have enjoyed in fuller measure the confidence, 
good-will and high regard of their fellow townsmen. 

During the early years of his residence here he worked at the iron 
molder's trade but subsequently learned the carpenter's trade, which he 
followed for a number of years as one of the leading contractors of the 
city, forming a partnership with Conrad Farr under the firm style of 
Johann & Farr. The two were associated in business for some time and 
in 1866 extended the scope of their business by establishing an undertak- 
ing department. In 1867 Mr. Farr withdrew, Mr. Johann continuing the 
business alone. His attention was given to the dual interests of contract- 
ing and undertaking until 1872, when he abandoned the former in order 
to devote all of his time to the funeral business, which had greatly in- 
creased and demanded his entire attention. In 1884, upon the admission 
of his sons, Charles H. and Albert H., to an interest in the business, the 
firm style was changed to Albert Johann & Sons, and was conducted under 
this partnership relation until 1904, when it was incorporated under the 
name of the Albert Johann & Sons Company, with Albert Johann as pres- 
ident; Albert H. Johann as vice president; Charles H. Johann, secretary 
and treasurer; and J. H. Berges, superintendent. It is estimated that dur- 
ing its existence this firm has buried twelve thousand people. The com- 



348 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

pany ranks second to none in the state and has every equipment for the care- 
ful and satisfactory conduct of funerals according to the most modern 
methods of caring for the dead. 

In 1854 Mr. Johann was married to Miss Barbara Spies, and unto them 
have been bom eight children: Amelia, the wife of John A. Fisher, of 
Chicago; Charles H. and Albert H., engaged in business with their father; 
Lydia, who passed away in 1880 while a resident of Evansville; Emma, 
who married Fred Strohm and makes her home in Evansville; Mamie, 
who passed away in Evansville in 1899; Edward W., who is married and 
is living in Memphis, Tennessee; and Eva, a resident of this city. The 
parents have traveled life's journey together for fifty-six years, sharing 
with each other in the joys and sorrows, the adversity and prosperity which 
checker the careers of all. 

In his political views Mr. Johann has long been a stalwart republican, 
and several years ago was twice elected as councilman from the sixth ward 
at a time when that ward was considered democratic by a sound majority. 
The fact of his election is certainly an indication of his popularity and the 
confidence reposed in him by his fellow townsmen. During later years 
he has taken no active part in politics but is still enjoying good health and 
is one of the honored and revered patriarchs of the community, being now 
in his eightieth year. He possesses a retentive memory and has close and 
intimate knowledge of the upbuilding and history of Evansville, relating 
many interesting incidents of the early days and indicating by his con- 
versation the prepress that has been brought about and the changes which 
have been wrought, bringing Evansville to its present position of prosperity 
and prominence. 



WILLIAM T. HOFFHERR. 

Fifty-five years ago William T. HoflFherr was born in Vanderburg 
county and here he has passed his entire life. He first saw the light of 
day upon a farm and farming has been his occupation up to the present 
time. He is regarded by his neighbors as one of the best farmers of the 
township and, judging by the abundance of his crops for the year 19 10, 
the high opinion entertained of his agricultural abilities is not misplaced. 
Mr. Hoffherr is a native of Armstrong township and his natal day was 
October 10, 1855. Here he grew up and in his boyhood attended to the 
duties of the farm and also received such education as was available in the 
district school. He was an obedient pupil in the school and an industrious 
worker on the farm, gaining a practical experience which he has been 
able to apply through many years with very favorable results. At the 
present time he is renting a farm of one hundred and forty acres, of which 
he was formerly overseer. This farm lies in the river bottoms and has 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 349 

the richest soil that can be found in the township. By skilful management 
Mr. Hoffherr has approached a condition of financial independence and 
the present season promises more abundant return than ever before. 

On the loth of November, 1880, Mr. Hoflfherr was united in marriage 
to Miss Minnie Bank, of Darmstadt, Indiana, a daughter of Henry Bank. 
By her advice and encouragement Mrs. Hoflfherr has been a most valuable 
assistant to her husband. Mr. Hoflfherr is aflSliated with the democratic 
party. He believes that the individual should be given the largest liberty 
possible as long as he does not interfere with the rights of others. He 
also believes in a moderate tariff. He is an earnest member of the Ger- 
man Lutheran church and a willing contributor to its support. He has 
always been industrious, resolute and persevering in everything he has 
undertaken and in his life work as a farmer he has put these principles 
into successful practice. 



SAMUEL BARKER BELL. 

It is estimated that the Civil war cost a million lives and among this 
number were many of the most promising young men any nation has ever 
known. The survivors of the war, many of whom entered the service be- 
fore they were twenty-one years of age, came home at its close with new 
ideas. Their outlook had been broadened and the years of marching, fight- 
ing and suflfering made an impression upon their minds which they could 
never forget and which largely controlled their future career. Thousands 
of soldiers after laying aside the implements of warfare engaged in the 
pursuits of business with the same energy that they had displayed in up- 
holding the country's flag, and the sons of these defenders of the nation 
are now taking their fathers' places and upon their shoulders largely rest 
the responsibilities of the nation. 

Among the soldier sons is Samuel Barker Bell, a successful farmer of 
Union township, Vanderburg county and also identified with the business 
interests of Evans ville. He was bom at Decker, Indiana, February 16, 
1876, a son of Henry S. and Mary Bell, the former of whom is now liv- 
ing, but the latter was called to her final rest in California in 1885. Henry 
S. Bell was one of the valiant young Americans who responded to Pres- 
ident Lincoln's call, enlisting in the Union army and serving under the 
celebrated cavalry leader. General Phil Sheridan, one of the most daring 
commanders of modem times. He continued in the service until the fight- 
ing had been brought to a close and the army of General Lee had been 
paroled and sent home to start the battle of life all over again after four 
years of disastrous struggle. Mr. Bell was a true soldier and his honor- 
able discharge entitles him to the confidence and respect of every lover of 
liberty. The stories of self-sacrifice and devotion to duty which he told 



350 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

at the home fireside and of which he was a living exemplar, had a marked 
effect in shaping the life of his son. 

Samuel Barker Bell was reared upon the home farm and educated in 
the district schools. He began as a boy to take an active interest in every- 
thing pertaining to the farm and this interest has never waned. He has 
devoted his energies to raising grain and his well cultivated fields have 
returned abundant harvests. He has a farm of one hundred and eighty- 
six acres and is known as one of the intelligent and progressive farmers 
of Union township. 

Mr. Bell was united in marriage to Miss Mabel Cecilia Smythe, a 
daughter of Henry and Emma (Stroud) Smythe. She was one of triplets. 
Her parents are both living and are natives of this county. Mr. and Mrs. 
Bell have a daughter, Henrietta, who is fourteen months old, and in their 
lives are controlled by the simple virtues, among which are industry and 
economy that always yield abundant returns for the time and energy em- 
ployed. Their residence is one of the attractive homes of the neighbor- 
hood and here abide peace and harmony. 

Mr. Bell is in hearty sympathy with the principles of the republican 
party, although in local aflfairs he does not permit party lines to interfere 
with his selection of a worthy candidate. Socially he holds membership 
in the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and in religious affiliation 
is identified with the Methodist church as that branch of Christian fellow- 
ship that most nearly represents the teachings of the Great Master. As 
the head of a happy family, the owner of a productive farm and a man 
respected by those who know him, Mr. Bell occupies an enviable position, 
but in the opinion of his friends it is a position he has fairly earned. 



SAMUEL G. EVANS. 



Prominent among the enterprising, successful and far-sighted business 
men of Evansville stands Samuel G. Evans, whose mercantile interests con- 
stitute an important factor in the commercial activity and stability of the 
city. Throughout his entire life whatever his hand has found to do he has 
done with all his might and with a sense of conscientious obligation, and 
industry and honor, therefore, have constituted the salient features in his 
business career. 

He was born in Jackson county. West Virginia, March 19, 1839, and 
is a son of E. S. and Ruami (Wright) Evans, natives of Virginia and 
Pennsylvania respectively. The father, who was born in Morgantown, 
Virginia, in 1800, was a gentleman farmer of the old school but while care- 
fully managing his business interests was never so occupied therewith that 
he had no time for the courtesies of life. He died in his native state in 




S. G. EVANS 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 353 

1876, and his wife, surviving him for about six years, passed away in 
Jackson county, West Virginia, in 1882. 

Samuel G. Evans was reared upon his father's farm and after study- 
ing in the local schools continued his education in Washington College of 
Pennsylvania, from which he was graduated with the class of 1861. For 
a short time afterward he studied law and then came to Evansville as an 
employe of the Adams Express Company. In 1864 he secured a position 
in the dry-goods house of Jaquess, French & Company, there remaining 
for about two years, when he became junior member of the firm of Jaquess 
Hudspeth & Company. He remained a member of that firm until 1876, 
when he joined D. J. Mackey in opening up business at 211 Main street, 
under the firm style of S. G. Evans & Company. The business prospered 
for four years and in 1880 Samuel G. Evans became the senior partner in 
the firm of Evans & Verwayne, which was organized in that year. Their 
trade rapidly increased and in 1895 Mr. Evans acquired the interest of his 
partner and removed to his present location on Fourth and Main streets. 
Here he has since carried on business as sole proprietor of an enterprise 
that is conducted under the name of S. G. Evans & Company. He carries 
a large and carefully selected stock and has surrounded himself with an 
able corps of assistants. His house has ever maintained a high standard 
in its personnel, in the character of the stock and in the services rendered 
to the public, and at all times the business methods employed have been in 
closest harmony with the strictest commercial ethics. He is a director of 
the Evansville Trust & Loan Company. 

In 1867 Mr. Evans was united in marriage to Miss Louisa Hornbrook, 
who was born in Vanderburg County near Darmstadt in 1842 and is a rep- 
resentative of one of the old, prominent and honored pioneer families of 
this county. Her father, Colonel Philip Hornbrook, was a son of Saunders 
Hornbrook, who engaged in the manufacture of woolen goods at Devon- 
shire, England, in which city Philip was born on the i6th of March, 1810. 
The family sailed for America in 18 19 and proceeded westward by water 
and by wagon train to Evansville, where they arrived on the 20th of De- 
cember, the grandfather of Mrs. Evans purchasing a large tract of land 
and at one time being the owner of fourteen quarter sections in Scott town- 
ship. For many years he remained a prominent factor in the business cir- 
cles of the county, not only conducting a store but also operating a wool and 
carding machine and a cotton gin. His business grew to extensive propor- 
tions and he became one of the leading factors in industrial, manufacturing 
and commercial circles here. 

In 1837 Philip Hornbrook was united in marriage to Miss Mary Simp- 
son, formerly of Boston, Massachusetts. Following his father's death in 
1839 he succeeded to the mercantile and farming interests and was engaged 
in business in Scott township until 1848, when he removed to Evansville, 
where he established a grocery and bakery business, thus becoming a fac- 
tor in the commercial development of this city. He was also prominent in 



354 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

public affairs and from 1853 until i860 served as one of the trustees of the 
schools. For several years he was secretary of Vanderburg County Agri- 
cultural Association and from 1861 until 1865 he was military agent of the 
state of Indiana with the rank of colonel. In 1869 he was appointed sur- 
veyor of customs and collector of the port at Evansville, and in the dis- 
charge of his official duties was ever found prompt, faithful and reliable. 

Mr. Evans has always given his political support to the democracy and 
keeps well informed on the vital questions and issues of the day, but has 
never sought office as the reward for party fealty. He is an exemplary 
representative of the Masonic fraternity and has attained the Knight Tem- 
plar degree. For years he has been a trustee of the Willard Library and 
belongs to the American Association for the Advancement of Science and 
the Indiana Academy of Science. He cooperates with the Business Men's 
Association in their efforts to promote the growth of Evansville through 
the extension of its trade relations, and at all times has been ready and will- 
ing to do the duty that lies closest his hand, whether for the promotion of 
individual interests, municipal affairs or intellectual progress. 



JOHN HIRSCH. 



It is not everybody who can become a successful farmer. To attain 
that enviable distinction a man must not only possess habits of industry 
and perseverance but he must also have good judgment, and unless he is 
early in life given a thorough training in all matters pertaining to the farnl 
he will experience great difficulty in attaining a position of recognized 
standing among experienced agriculturists. The true farmer, as in all 
other callings, is bom to the vocation and accomplishes many things easily 
which others may never be able to accomplish at all. To this class belongs 
John Hirsch, owner of a beautiful farm of two hundred and seventy 
acres in Knight township, Vanderburg county, and for many years a leader 
in the township as a farmer and stock-raiser. 

Mr. Hirsch first opened his eyes to the light of day on a farm in the 
township where he now lives on the 17th of November, 1859. Here he 
passed the days of his boyhood, attending the district schools and per- 
forming various duties about the farm. He also possessed the advantages 
of further education at St. Mary's school in Evansville and the mental 
training which he received under competent teachers has assisted him very 
materially during all the years of contact with the world. He early chose 
agriculture as his favorite pursuit and no young man in the township was 
more earnest in his work or produced more favorable returns from the 
time and energy employed in cultivating the farm and raising live stock 
than the subject of this review. He has always been recognized as an 
intelligent, progressive and enterprising man, ever ready to adopt any reason- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 355 

able suggestion that could be applied successfully upon the farm, and an 
observer and student who has always been well informed and who has 
kept fully abreast of the times, so that he has been able to add from year 
to year to his financial resources. In addition to the highly improved farm 
upon which he lives, Mr. Hirsch is the owner of a third interest in sixteen 
hundred acres of land in Illinois, his brothers Leonard and Jacob own- 
ing the other two-thirds. 

In 1889 Mr. Hirsch was united in marriage to Miss Mary Titzer, of 
McCutchanville, Indiana, who departed this life a few years later. One 
child was the result of the union. This child died in infancy. In 1893 
Mr. Hirsch was again married, his second union being with Miss Gertrude 
Guetling, of Spencer county, this state. They have five children: Amelia, 
now fifteen years of age; Stella, thirteen years of age; Louisa, twelve 
years of age; Leo, ten years of age; and Tillie, eight years of age. 

Mr. Hirsch is a member of Trinity Catholic church and also of St. 
Joseph's Society. Politically he is allied with the democratic party. He 
has devoted his attention mainly to his farming interests and has never 
aspired to public office. In the course of his life he has demonstrated 
that success depends largely upon sound judgment, backed by rightly 
directed ambition. A prominent citizen of his section, he has by an up- 
right life, extending through a long period of years, gained and retained 
the respect of all who know him. 



HENRY R. DUNAVAN. 

Henry R. Dunavan is vice president of the wholesale grocery com- 
pany of Ragon Brothers, a name that in Evansville is synonymous with 
merit and enterprise, progressive methods and the highest standards of 
trade. For twenty-eight years Mr. Dunavan has been connected with the 
house and was called to the position of second executive officer in 1902. 



INTERMEDIATE LIFE ASSURANCE COMPANY. 

The Intermediate Life Assurance Company, whose home office is in 
Evansville, Indiana, was organized in 1904 and is operating under Indiana's 
rigid legal reserve compulsory insurance deposit law, being the only com- 
pany doing business under this statute south of Indianapolis. 

The company's assets aggregate over one-half million dollars, consist- 
ing of first mortgage loans on unincumbered real estate loaned at fifty 
per cent of the appraised value, loans within the reserve to its policy hold- 
ers, and the magnificent, home office building located at the comer of Third 
and Main streets. 



356 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

The motto of this company has been and will be in the future, to issue 
nothing but the most modem and liberal policy contracts, realizing that 
the public would appreciate policies of this character. Much of the suc- 
cess of the company is attributed to this feature. 

The stockholders of the Intermediate Life Assurance Company are 
some of the most prominent and reputable citizens in their community. 
The company is officered by: Madison J. Bray, president, Evansville; W. 
F. Weyerbacher, vice president, Boonville ; Fred Baker, secretary-treasurer, 
Evansville; Dr. Edwin Walker, medical director, Evansville; and directors 
H. H. Ogden, Evansville; Sidney Ichenhauser, Evansville; Frank Lohoff, 
Evansville; J. W. Richardson, Boonville; Charles H. Howard, Hazelton. 

The company's business is now confined strictly in Indiana. During the 
year 191 1 its business will be extended into Kentucky and Illinois and 
within the very near future its business will be further extended in nearly 
every state in the Union. 

The present status and standing of the Intermediate Life Assurance 
Company indicates that it is fast developing into one of the strongest finan- 
cial institutions in southern Indiana. The law that the company is operat- 
ing under guarantees the public that the funds of the company are as safe 
as a national bank note or government bond, thereby enabling this com- 
pany not only to issue a liberal and modem policy contract but one as safe 
and secure as any can be obtained by any of its competitors. 

The Intermediate is strictly an old line legal reserve company and was 
built up upon that theory which has stood the test of one hundred and fifty 
years of actual experience and is recognized by all standard authorities in- 
cluding actuaries and insurance commissioners of the various states as 
being safe, sane, sound and perpetual. 



F. L. DAVIS, M. D. 



Dr. F. L. Davis came to Evansville from Greencastle, Indiana, in 1866. 
He was but a young lad when his parents died and he was left to shift for 
himself. Through the travail of ambitious, hard working boyhood he 
made his way, securing such employment as he might and utilizing his 
leisure hours for study that he might educate himself and prepare for more 
valuable service in a broader field of labor. He took up the study of medi- 
cine and in 1862 began to practice. Ambitious to advance as far as possible 
in his profession, he has since availed himself of every opportunity of 
broadening his knowledge and promoting his efficiency. During the winter 
of 1864 and 1865, therefore, he attended lectures in Cleveland and in 1870 
he was graduated from the Cleveland Homeopathic Medical College. Since 
locating in Evansville, in 1866, he has practiced here continuously and by 
study has kept abreast of the times, being one of the foremost members 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 357 

of the medical fraternity here. The advanced thought of the profession 
has found him an interested student and he eagerly embraces the methods 
which are promoted and which his judgment sanctions as of real worth in 
practice. He has specialized to some extent in the field of vibrotherapy and 
read a paper upon the subject before the Ohio Valley Medical Association 
in 1908. In this he makes the statement that: "Mechanical vibrotherapy is 
capable of '(i) increasing the volume of blood and lymph flow to a given 
area or organ; (2) stimulating secretion and increasing nutrition; (3) im- 
proving the respiratory process and function; (4) improving muscular 
and general metabolism and increasing the production of animal heat; (5) 
stimulating the excretory organs and assisting the functions of elimination ; 
(6) softening and relieving muscular contractures; (7) relieving engorge- 
ment and congestion; (8) facilitating the removal, through the natural 
channels of the lymphatics, of tumors, exudates and other products of in- 
flammation ; (9) inhibiting and relieving pain.' " His paper attracted wide- 
spread attention and his methods of practice in this regard have received 
the endorsement of many members of the profession. He is a member of 
the Homeopathic State Medical Society and Round Table of Evansville, 
the Indiana State Medical Society. The American Institute of Home- 
opathy, the Vanderburg County Medical Society, the Ohio Valley Medical 
Association and the American Medical Association. 

Dr. Davis is allied with the Masonic fraternity and is in thorough sym- 
pathy with the spirit of mutual helpfulness and brotherly kindness which 
underlies the craft. In politics he has been a stalwart republican since the 
organization of the party, but has largely confined his activities to his prac- 
tice, wherein he has made continuous and satisfactory progress, winning the 
good will and confidence of other members of the medical fraternity in his 
close conformity to a high standard of professional ethics. 



BENARD H. RIETMAN. 

The history of the present deals with business problems, the develop- 
ment and conduct of important manufacturing and industrial interests and 
the utilization of the natural resources which have been provided in various 
sections of the country. The men, therefore, who are most prominent in 
community life are those who establish and control important business in- 
terests, in which connection Benard H. Rietman was well known, having 
for a number of years been a member of the firm of the Rietman & Schulte 
Lumber Company, dealers in hardwood lumber. 

He was born in Evansville May 14, 1864, and his early experiences 
were such as usually fall to the lot of the lad who is reared in a growing 
and enterprising middle-west town. His early education was acquired in 
the public schools of Evansville and later he attended the University of 



358 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

St. Louis, Missouri. He early began to learn the lumber business in the 
sawmill of Rietman & Schulte, the senior partner being his father, who for 
many years was a resident of Evansville, closely associated with its indus- 
trial interests as a manufacturer of lumber. The early experiences of 
Benard H. Rietman in the lumber mill gave him comprehensive knowl- 
edge of the business and made him an expert in the valuation of lumber 
and constituted a forceful element in the attainment of success in later 
years. Eventually he became a member of the well known firm of Riet- 
man & Schulte, dealers in hardwood lumber, in which connection they 
developed a trade of large proportions, owing to the reliability of their 
business methods, their promptness in executing orders and the spirit of 
progressiveness which dominated them in all their transactions. 

Mr. Rietman was united in marriage to Miss Lillian M. Bartholome, a 
daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Simon Bartholome and a representative of 
one of the old families of this city. Her father, who was a soldier of 
the Civil war, is still living in Evansville, but her mother passed away on 
the 2ist of January, 1906. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Rietman was bom a son,- 
Henry B., on the 22d of February, 1891. He attended the public schools 
of Evansville and also the parochial school of St. Anthony, completing his 
education, however, at Worcester, Massachusetts. He is now acting as 
assistant bookkeeper for one of the largest firms in Evansville. 

Mr. Rietman belonged to the Knights of St. John and to St. Anthony's 
Catholic church, in which he served as a trustee. He was regarded as one 
of the city's substantial young business men, always ready to lend his aid 
and influence to further the public good or to promote progressive meas- 
ures. He was found reliable and enterprising in all of his dealings and 
straightforward in every relation of life, and his death was, therefore, the 
occasion of deep and wide-felt sorrow when on the ist of October, 1901, 
he passed away at the age of thirty-seven years. Mrs. Rietman occupies 
a beautiful home at No. 614 Oakley street, which is one of the finest resi- 
dences in Evansville. 



WILLIAM H. BOETTICHER. 

Among the earnest men whose depth of character and strict adherence 
to principle incite the admiration of his contemporaries William H. Boet- 
ticher is prominent. Throughout his business career he has steadily worked 
his way upward by reason of indefatigable industry and has at length 
reached a prominent position in commercial and financial circles. His 
business interests, extensive and varied, have ever been of such a nature 
that while promoting his individual success they have also advanced the 
general prosperity, by increasing commercial activity and by inaugurating 
a financial policy that has done much to further business stability. He is 
perhaps best known as vice president of the Boetticher & Kellogg Com- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 359 

pany and president of the Advance Stove Works, although he has other 
interests. 

He was bom in Evansville December 6, i860, a son of Edward and 
Amelia Boetticher. After mastering the branches of learning taught in 
the public schools of this city he prepared for the onerous and responsible 
duties that were to come to him in later life by pursuing a course in Ranks 
Business College. He was a youth of seventeen years when, in 1877, he 
secured a clerkship in the hardware store of R. H. Kellogg, with whom 
he remained until 1880. During the two succeeding years he was shipping 
clerk for Boetticher & Kellogg Company, and was then sent upon the 
road as traveling salesman, thus representing the house in the develop- 
ment of its trade interests until 1904. In that year he was made assistant 
buyer. His present official connection with the Boetticher & Kellogg Com- 
pany is that of vice president, in which connection he is largely giving 
his supervision to the management of affairs relating to the development 
of the business and to executive control. Proving his worth and ability 
in commercial circles, his cooperation has been sought in other fields and 
at the present time he is the president of the Advance Stove Works, one 
of the most important business enterprises of the city, and also a director 
of the Beach & Fuller Basket Company. 

On the 28th of February, 1890, Mr. Boetticher was married to Miss 
Ida T. Griener, a daughter of R. and A. Griener. Theirs is an attractive 
home, its hospitable spirit being greatly enjoyed by their many friends. 
Mr. Boetticher gives his political support to the republican party which 
he has indorsed since age conferred upon him the right of franchise. He 
belongs to the Knights of Pythias lodge and to the United Commercial 
Travelers, and during its existence was a member of the Evansville Rifles, 
a company of the State Militia. 

He is a man of distinctive ability and his character is one which is 
above the shadow of reproach. He has ever been faithful to the posi- 
tions to which he has been called and is widely known and respected by 
all who have been in any way familiar with his honorable and useful 



HENRY L. COOK. 



The life record of Henry L. Cook covered fifty-five years, the greater 
part of which period was spent on this side the Atlantic, although the 
accident of birth made him a native of Germany. He was bom in 1845 
and when a small boy crossed the Atlantic. It was a wonderful voyage 
to him, passing from the environment of his little German home to the 
scenes and experiences of ocean travel and of further journeyings across 
the country to Evansville. He was a pupil in the public schools of this 



360 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

city and as he approached manhood he sought employment that would yield 
him a comfortable living. Becoming connected with the First National 
Bank, he diligently and earnestly applied himself to the tasks assigned 
him and his prompt and intelligent discharge of his duties eventually 
brought him to the position of cashier, which he occupied at the time of 
his demise. In business circles he was looked upon as a forceful man, 
thoroughly reliable, and at all times obliging in his treatment of the patrons 
of the bank. These qualities made him esteemed and honored by all. 

In 1867 Mr. Cook was united in marriage to Miss Eva Dausmann, who 
was also a native of Germany, but was only a year old when brought to 
this country. Unto them were born two children but the only one now 
living is Bertha, the wife of A. F. Decker, of Evansville. The wife and 
mother passed away in 1890, and on the 15th of December, 1891, Mr. 
Cook married Lena Dausmann, by whom he had three children: Arthur 
J.; Irma M. ; and Edwin H., who died August 26, 1899, at the age of 
six years. Mrs. Cook is a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Dausmann, 
who were also natives of Germany, but came to the United States many 
years ago. Her father died in 1885, and her mother July 2, 1909, and 
both were buried in Evansville. 

By his ballot Mr. Cook supported the men and measures of the repub- 
lican party but never cared for political honors. At one time he was a 
member of several fraternal organizations, including the Masons, but after 
his second marriage dropped all k>dges, preferring to devote his time to 
his home and family. He was an earnest member of St. John's Evangeli- 
cal church, to which his widow also belongs, and for many years he served 
as deacon. 



ELMER S. WHITE. 



Elmer S. White is engaged in the electrical supply business in Evansville 
and although his experience is comparatively brief, because he is yet a 
young man, he is nevertheless forging to the front in his chosen field. He 
was bom in Sorgho, Kentucky, July 10, 1887, and is a son of Willis G. and 
Rebecca Jane (Dearinger) White. His father, also a native of Sorgho, 
engaged in farming and in blacksmithing, continuing actively in business 
to the time of his death, wihich occurred in 1891. 

In the Sorgho public school Elmer S. White began his education and at 
eight years of age removed to Owensboro, Kentucky, and entered the public 
schools, where he continued through successive grades until he left high 
school at the age of eighteen years. After putting aside his text-books he 
engaged in the electrical business as an employe of D. E. Berry & Company, 
with whom he remained one year. He was then transferred to the Evans- 
ville branch of their house, acting as manager for a year in this city. Later 




ELMER S. WHITE 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 363 

he became manager for the Thompson Electric Company and for the Koll- 
ker Electric Company, his services as manager with the two concerns cov- 
ering three years. Desiring to engage in business on his own account, he 
joined Charles E. Jett in purchasing the business of the D. E. Berry Elec- 
tric Company and is now junior partner of the firm of Jett-White. He is 
very popular and has been very successful in the electrical business, being 
credited with some of the largest and most scientific electrical installations 
in the city of Evansville, and also handles a general line of electrical sup- 
plies. Study of the wants of the public in his line, combined with enterpris- 
ing business methods and honorable dealing, constitute the source of the 
progress that he is making. 



EDWARD N. HILL. 



With resolute spirit Edward N. Hill has progressed in business life 
and is today one of the leading merchants of Evansville, conducting an 
extensive men's furnishing, hat and tailor business. His success is such 
that his methods are of interest to the commercial world. Much has been 
written concerning success and its attainment, but this generalization has 
little effect. Such a history as that of Edward N. Hill, however, speaks 
in no uncertain terms and proves that unremitting industry, keen insight 
and utilization of opportunities will lead to substantial and satisfactory 
results. 

Mr. Hill is a native of Louisville, Kentucky, as were his parents, Frank 
and Alice (Newland) Hill. The father served as a captain in the Union 
army during the Civil war and was a strong opponent of slavery. Liv- 
ing in the south he recognized the evils of the system, and did all in his 
power to abolish it. 

In the public schools of Louisville, Edward N. Hill pursued his educa- 
tion until he was graduated from the high school at the early age of four- 
teen years, having displayed special aptitude in his studies. He then went 
to Indianapolis, Indiana, where he was employed as a clerk in a clothing 
store, gaining the initial experience which qualified him for the success- 
ful conduct of the business which he is now carrying on. That he was 
diligent, faithful and adaptable is indicated in the fact that he continued 
with one firm for eleven years, being promoted from time to time to posi- 
tions of larger responsibility and greater remuneration. He next went to 
Denver, Colorado, where he was engaged as buyer in the same line for 
four years, on the expiration of which period he came to Evansville and 
was employed in the same capacity, by the Progress Clothing Company 
for a number of years. 

In the meantime he carefully saved his earnings until his capital justi- 
fied his embarkation in business on his own account, and on the 17th of 



364 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

March, 1910, he opened a store, which with few exceptions, is the finest 
men's hat, furnishing and tailor shop in the United States. His success 
has been remarkable. His long experience as a salesman and buyer, how- 
ever, well qualified him for the conduct of the business, bringing to him 
a comprehensive knowledge of the trade, the demands of the public and 
the advancement in styles. He utilizes every inch of space in his store 
and is fast securing a trade which in volume and importance has eclipsed 
enterprises of similar character long established here. Mr. Hill has two 
hobbies, namely, that of humanizing his business, he believes in the men 
around him and in the goods he sells ; the other is newspaper pubHcity, 
never using any other medium for putting his store to the front, experi- 
ence seems to have taught him that he must have dependable merchandise 
first, and then tell about the merit his wares have in a forcible way. He 
believes that advertising is the searchlight that reveals the character of the 
management of any business, and the sign board pointing to the inner man. 

On the 26th of December, 1907, Mr. Hill was united in marriage to 
Miss Ella McNeely, who is at present half owner of the Evansville Journal 
News, being a daughter of Hon. James H. McNeely, one of the former 
proprietors and editors of that paper and a representative of one of the 
leading families of Indiana, of which mention is made elsewhere in this 
volume. 

Mr. Hill gives his political endorsement to the republican party and 
as every true American citizen should do keeps well informed in the issues 
and questions of the day, so that he is able to support his position by in- 
telligent argument. He holds membership with the Benevolent and Pro- 
tective Order of Elks at Evansville and with the Knights of Pythias. His 
manner is genial, his disposition cordial and kindly, and his sterling and 
dominent traits of character are such as have gained for him the warm 
regard and confidence of his fellowmen. In business circles he has proven 
his force and enterprising spirit and along the lines of progressive, modern 
development he is meeting with success and classed as a leader. 



C. HOWARD BATTIN. 



Time tests the merit of all things, whether it is the worth of a product 
or the ability of an individual. The strength or weakness of each will be 
evidenced as the years go by. Personal progress, therefore, is attained 
when industry, adaptability and trustworthiness have been proven. These 
qualities have constituted dominant elements in the life of C. Howard 
Battin and have brought him to the present enviable position which he 
occupies in business circles as vice president of the Tennis Company and 
secretary of the Evansville Railway Company. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 365 

A native of Ohio, Mr. Battin was born near Kensington, Columbiana 
county, on the i8th of June, 1871, and is a son of FrankHn and Jane Bat- 
tin, also natives of Ohio. His parents were of Quaker ancestry and were 
connected with the Hicksite branch of the Society of Friends. His father 
was of Welsh lineage in the paternal line and of Irish descent in the mater- 
nal line. His wife's people were Scotch. He devoted his life to farming 
until his death, which occurred about 1904. His wife passed away in 
1895. In their family were four sons and a daughter, of whom two sons 
are deceased, one son having died in infancy. The brother of our sub- 
ject is W. L. Battin, a resident of Greenfield, Iowa, and the sister, Adella, 
is also living in that place. 

C. Howard Battin, the youngest of the family, was educated in the 
public schools and in a commercial college at Rochester, New York. He 
afterward engaged in teaching school for three years and then turned his 
attention to commercial pursuits, establishing a grocery store at Akron, 
Ohio, where he continued in business for three years, and then sold out. 
From that time he has largely been connected with urban and interurban 
interests. He was first employed as a conductor on the interurban line be- 
tween Akron and Cuyahoga Falls, operating under the name of the Rapid 
Transit Company. Three months later he was promoted and became road 
foreman, in which capacity he served for two years. He then moved to 
Cincinnati, and was made superintendent of the Cincinnati, Laurenburg & 
Aurora lines, his identification therewith continuing until 1900, when he 
became associated with Charles C. Tennis, of the Tennis Company, in 
railroad construction. He was elected vice president of this company, 
which is operating exclusively in the field of interurban railway building. 
He has also been secretary of the Evansville Railways Company for two 
years, and recently joined H. M. Lukens in organizing the firm of H. M. 
Lukens & Company for the conduct of a stock and bond brokerage busi- 
ness. He is well qualified in this latter connection, thoroughly understand- 
ing the value of commercial paper of this character, and the enterprise, 
determination and progressive spirit which he has displayed in every busi- 
ness connection argue well for success in the latter field which he hag 
adopted. 

On the 27th of October, 1892, Mr. Battin was married to Miss Mae 
W. Bradford, a daughter of Thomas S. Bradford, of Akron, Ohio, who 
is of English descent. In the maternal line Mrs. Battin can trace her an- 
cestry through three generations bom in Akron, Ohio. One of her an- 
cestors was the first white child born in this city. Mr. and Mrs. Battin are 
now the parents of three children : Vera, bom September 2, 1893 ; Le- 
land, June 6, 1899; and Dalton W., January 10, 1909. 

Mr. Battin usually votes with the republican party yet does not con- 
sider himself bound by party ties. He holds to no narrow creed or doctrine 
in religious belief but gives his support to the Universalist church. For 
ten years he has been dentified with the Masonic lodge and is also a mem- 



366 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ber of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. He has social qual- 
ities that render him popular among friends and business associates alike, 
and at no time in the stress of business, in his relations as a citizen or in his 
associations in social life has he ever forgotten the. duties and obligations 
which he owes to his fellowmen, while his personal traits of character are 
such as have won for him high esteem. 



EDWARD R. SMITH. 



The business world is constantly attracting to its ranks the best talent 
of the country and many of the feats accomplished by business men of 
modem times have required keener generalship than was exhibited by vic- 
tors on scores of historic battlefields. The business manager is the gen- 
eral of today, and his army is to be seen in the willing workers whose 
presence is felt all over our country and whose products are distributed in 
the most distant regions of the world. It is to the practical business 
leader that the mind turns as the one who will ultimately solve the prob- 
lems of city and state and whose counsels are always in favor of what 
is just and fair between them. 

Among the practical business men of Evansville is Edward R. Smith, 
vice president and general manager of the E. Q. Smith Chair Company. 
He is a native of Evansville, born August 17, 1866. His father, E. Q. 
Smith, who was a chair maker by trade, was bom at Hunter, Greene 
county, New York, and there engaged in the business before coming to 
Evansville in 1857. The E. Q. Smith Chair Company was established in 
Evansville by him. In 1887 the firm was incorporated and he became 
president of the company, continuing in that position until his death, which 
occurred March 10, 1903. He was a thorough business man and as an 
expert in his line had few superiors anywhere. 

Until the age of seventeen years Edward R. Smith was a student in 
the public or high schools. Having shown a tendency for the same line 
of business as his father, he received his introduction to his future career 
as traveling salesman for the house, remaining in that department for three 
years. He then entered the factory and gained a knowledge of its opera- 
tions by starting at the bottom and working through the various depart- 
ments, devoting six years to the acquisition of a complete understanding 
of an industry which he had chosen as his life work. A^t the age of twenty- 
six years he was made general manager and since 1892 he has been vice 
president of the company. Under his management the business has grown 
until it is one of the most flourishing industries in Evansville. The product 
turned out by the factory represents a complete line of chairs of all grades, 
up to the leather covered diners and rockers of the finest workmanship and 
most elegant design. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 367 

Mr. Smith was united in marriage at Evansville, June ii, 1889, to 
Miss Amelia Neekamp, and three children were bom to them: Edward 
H., now eighteen years of age and a traveling salesman for his father; 
Floyd N., sixteen years of age, in the office of the E. Q. Smith Company 
as bookkeeper; and M. Wallace, now five years of age. 

Mr. Smith is a member of Trinity Methodist Episcopal church. He 
has been for many years actively identified with the Masonic order and 
is deeply versed in its teachings. He is past master of Evansville Lodge, 
No. 64; past high priest of Evansville Chapter, No. 12; a member oi 
Simpson Council, R. A. M. ; of La Vallette Commandery, No. 15, K. T. ; 
and of Hadi Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S. In political, social and business 
circles Mr. Smith is recognized as one who shirks no responsibility, and, 
like his father before him, he does not hesitate to perform his duty as 
he sees it. A pleasant companion and a genial gentlemen, he has many 
friends. He is bringing up his sons in accordance with principles which 
he himself has found most effective and which are expressed by the words 
truth, sincerity, energy, capability, tenacity and confidence in one's self. 
It requires no argument to prove that any young man who is actuated by 
these elements and balanced by the saving grace of common sense is ab- 
solutely sure to win. 



FRED W. KRIEGER. 



Fred W. Krieger is a well known representative of the German-Amer- 
ican element, which has played such an important part in the business 
development and upbuilding of Vanderburg county. He is now living 
upon a farm of one hundred and thirty-nine acres in Center township, 
which he purchased in 1907. His birth occurred in Germany, December 
4, 1862, his parents being Charles and Louisa (Busse) Krieger, who were 
likewise natives of that land where they spent their entire lives. The 
father died March 7, 1901, while his wife's death occurred in March, 1904. 

Fred W. Krieger spent his youthful days under the parental roof, re- 
maining at home until he reached the age of eighteen, when the opportuni- 
ties of the new world proved to him an irresistible call and he crossed 
the Atlantic. He first settled in Washington county, Illinois, where he 
remained for eight months, when he came to Vanderburg county, Indiana, 
and began a contracting business, having previously learned the carpen- 
ter's trade. He followed that pursuit for a year and to some extent still 
does contracting, but the greater part of his time and attention are given 
to his farming interests. He purchased his present place in 1907 and now 
has a well developed tract of one hundred and thirty-nine acres, having 
brought the fields under a high state of cultivation. He has also built 
fences and outbuildings and expects soon to commence work on a barn 



368 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

thirty-four by sixty-six feet. Thus he has put forth earnest effort in 
the line of general improvement and his farm has become a paying prop- 
erty. 

On the 29th of November, 1888, Mr. Krieger was united in marriage 
to Miss Christina Kuester, a daughter of Charles and Louisa Kuester, 
both of whom were natives of Germany. The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. 
Krieger has been blessed with three sons, Charles, Arthur and Freddie, 
aged respectively, nineteen, seventeen and seven years, and all yet under 
the parental roof. 

Mr. Krieger is a committeeman in the Home Storm Insurance Com- 
pany. His political allegiance is given to the democratic party and he 
and his family attend and support the German Lutheran church. His life 
has been a busy and useful one, devoted to the business interests to which 
he has felt himself adapted, and as the years have passed he has made 
steady progress. He may truly be called a self-made man, for when he 
came to America his capital was limited. He recognized the fact, how- 
ever, that opportunity is open to all and by the improvement of the ad- 
vantages which are afforded in the business life of the new world he has 
steadily worked his way upward. 



EUGENE PFAFFLIN. 



Eugene Pfafiflin, local agent at Evansville for the Anheuser-Busch 
Brewing Association of St. Louis since April 15, 1900, was born in this 
city, December 4, 1865, his parents being Adolph and Mary (App) 
Pfafflin, whose surnames indicate their German nativity and ancestry. 
The father entered the Union service during the dark days of the Civil 
war and organized Company A of the One Hundred and Thirty-sixth In- 
diana Volunteer Infantry. Coming to Evansville in 1856, he was for some 
time engaged in the hotel business as proprietor of the Washington House, 
which stood on the comer of Third and Main streets, where the Nathan 
Grass clothing store now stands. He was called upon to serve as city 
clerk and also county sheriff and representative to the state legislature, 
filling these responsible positions with credit to himself and honor to the 
city and county. He was also a member of the school board for several 
years. After a useful and well spent life, he passed away November 20, 
1879, and his wife died August 3, 1895. 

Spending his youthful days under the parental roof Eugene Pfafflin 
attended the public and high schools until he reached the age of sixteen 
years, when he crossed the threshold of business life by accepting the 
position of bookkeeper in the planing mill of George Mutchler, with whom 
he remained for two years. He then engaged as bookkeeper for Koerner, 
Kuehm & Koerner, proprietors of a planing mill, by whom he was em- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 369 

ployed for three years. His next position was with E. S. Babcock, capi- 
talist, by whom he was sent to California as timekeeper and paymaster on 
the erection of the Coronado Hotel. After two years spent on the Pacific 
coast he returned to Evansville and embarked in the retail grocery busi- 
ness, with which he was connected for two years. He afterward engaged 
with Val M. Schmitz & Company, a retail clothier, with whom he was 
associated as bookkeeper for three years. On the expiration of that period 
he became bookkeeper at the local branch of the Anheuser-Busch Brewing 
Association and so continued until 1900, when he was appointed general 
agent of the Evansville branch and has since successfully managed their 
interests in this city, building up for the St. Louis house an extensive 
trade. His business methods are progressive and effective and under his 
guidance the patronage of the Evansville branch has continually increased. 

On the 1st of December, 1887, Mr. Pfafflin was married in Evansville 
to Miss Katie Hahn, and unto them have been born seven children : Adolph, 
nineteen years of age, who is now engaged with the Evansville Trunk Coms- 
pany; Carl, seventeen years of age, who is also with the same company; 
Eugene, fourteen years of age; Theodore, twelve years of age; Arnold, 
aged ten, and Edward, aged seven, all pupils in the public schools; and 
Catharine, two years of age. 

Mr. Pfafiflin gives his political allegiance to the republican party but 
does not seek nor desire office, preferring to concentrate his energies upon 
his business affairs and social interests, the forces which contribute to his 
support and his pleasure in life. 



FRANK P. FUCHS. 



Frank P. Fuchs, cashier of the Citizens National Bank and popular in 
the social circles of the city, was born in Evansville September 6, 1875. 
His father, Jacob Fuchs, a native of Germany, is still living here and was 
one of the first free delivery mail carriers of Evansville. In recent years he 
has turned his attention to merchandising and is now engaged in the grocery 
business at No. 109 High street. He married Sophia Eggert, also a native 
of Germany, and her death occurred in December, 1907. 

Frank P. Fuchs is the eldest in a family of four children, all of whom 
are living in Evansville. He began his education as a public school student 
and afterward pursued a course in a commercial college. On leaving that 
institution in January, 1890, he looked about him for a favorable oppor- 
tunity for entrance into business life and in May of that year he secured 
a position as messenger in the Citizens National Bank. Through successive 
promotions he has risen to the office of cashier, to which he was elected 
on the 27th of January, 1910. He is a popular official, obliging and cour- 
teous, and yet never neglectful in the least of the best interests of the in- 
stitution which he represents. 



370 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Mr. Fuchs is a republican, although somewhat independent in his politi- 
cal tendencies. He belongs to the Zion Evangelical church, Reed Lodge, 
No. 316, A. F. & A. M., and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. 
He is interested in all manly athletics and outdoor sports, was one of the 
organizers of the Central Turners, and is secretary, treasurer and one of 
the most active members of the Recreation Gun Club. He also belongs to 
the Grand Chain Fishing Qub and several bowling clubs. 



ORA HERBERT ROBERTS. 

O. H. Roberts is an able and distinguished Evansville lawyer who 
passed his youth amid ungenerous and cheerless surroundings and by the 
weight of his own character and ability, as represented in the utilization 
of every opportunity that has come to him, has worked his way upward to 
his present enviable position. His birth occurred in Vanderburg county, 
May 4, 1884. At an early day his paternal grandparents came to Indiana 
from North Carolina, of which state they were natives, and settled in 
Spencer county, while his maternal grandparents were born in Warrick 
county, Indiana, the family being established there in pioneer times. The 
Frisbies, however, were originally from North Carolina. His father, 
Britton Roberts, was born in Spencer county, December 4, 1854, and after 
attaining adult age was married to Miss Eunice Belle Frisbie, whose birth 
occurred in Warrick county, March 7, 1855. He devoted his life to farm- 
ing but spent his last days in Evansville, ill health compelling his retire- 
ment for about twenty years. He died four years ago. 

O. H. Roberts acquired his early education in the public schools. At 
the age of thirteen years he went to work in the Evansville Cotton Mills 
and was afterward with the H. Hermans Manufacturing Company of 
Evansville. When still quite young he spent two years in St. Louis. He 
learned the machinist's trade and during that period, anxious to secure a 
better education than had been accorded him, attended night school. Later 
he went to Denver, Colorado, where he spent nine months in the Leyner 
Engineering Works. The southwest was his next field of labor and in 
Houston, Texas, he had charge of the tool room for the Southern Pacific 
Railroad Company. Laudable ambition prompted him to seek a broader 
field for his energies and determination — his dominant qualities — and in 
1904 he went to the capital city, where he entered George Washington 
University, from which he was graduated in 1907 with the LL. B. degree. 
The following year the Master of Law degree was conferred upon him. 
When in Washington he worked in the navy yard as a mechanic and in 
that way paid for his education, at the same time supporting his mother. 

Mr. Roberts returned to Evansville to engage in general practice and 
his progress in his profession has been most gratifying and satisfactory. 




O. H. ROBERTS 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 373 

No dreary novitiate awaited him. Almost from the beginning he was ac- 
corded a liberal clientage and his law business is now extensive and of 
a most important character. He most carefully prepares his cases and 
enters the court room equipped for defense as well as for attack. His 
deductions are logical and his arguments forceful, and he has proven 
again and again that he is well qualified to cross swords in forensic combat 
with the ablest members of the Evansville bar. He never confines his 
reading to the main points but also prepares for the unexpected which 
happens quite as frequently in the courts as out of them. He is, therefore, 
never surprised by the attack of an adversary and has justly won the repu- 
tation of being one of Evansville's most able and successful lawyers. 

In his political views Mr. Roberts has always been a democrat and is 
recognized as one of the active workers of the party, whose opinions carry 
weight in its councils, and yet he has never sought nor desired the re- 
wards of office for party fealty. He is serving as chief of Evening Star 
Court, No. 231, of the Tribe of Ben Hur, his term expiring January i, 
191 1. Religious activity also finds a prominent place in his life. He is 
one of the ushers and clerk of the First Baptist church and is president 
of the young men's class of the church. His is a strong character devel- 
oped through hardships and adversity, which are often found to be the 
best incentives for effort and ambition. Unfaltering determination has 
enabled him to overcome all the difficulties in his path and the consensus 
of public opinion now places him in a most enviable position as a repre- 
sentative of the legal fraternity in Evansville. 



G. MICHAEL DAUSSMAN. 

G. Michael Daussman, secretary and treasurer of the T. W. Cook Brew- 
ing Company, is a native of Germany, bom in 1847. He is a son of Jacob 
Daussman, who was a cooper and brewer by trade and who came to Amer- 
ica with his family in 1855 on a sailing ship, locating in Evansville, where 
he followed his trade until his death in 1896. The maiden name of the 
mother of our subject was Eva Feibert, who survived her husband seven 
years and was called to her final rest in 1903. Seven children were born 
of the union of Mr. and Mrs. Daussman : Phillipina, now Mrs. Fred Stei- 
man; Eva, now Mrs. Sam Kamm; Kate, now Mrs. Sam Zeigler, of Chi- 
cago ; Gertrude, now Mrs. Albert Scholtz ; Louisa, who became Mrs. Stock- 
well and is now deceased; and Catherine, who died in infancy. 

G. Michael Daussman, the only son, received his education in the pub- 
lic schools of Germany and at the age of eight years came with his parents 
to Evansville which has since been his home. In 1866 he became identi- 
fied with the F. W. Cook Brewing Company first as bookkeeper and then 
as traveling salesman and afterward in various capacities, making him- 



374 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

self so useful that in 1885 he was elected secretary and treasurer and has 
since continued in those positions. By ability and inclination Mr. Dauss- 
man is adapted for a business career and during all the years in which 
he has been connected with the company he has contributed in an im- 
portant degree in building up its reputation and in extending the territory 
over which the products of the plant are distributed. He is thoroughly 
acquainted with the various details of the business, which has grown to 
large proportions within recent years. 

In 1880 Mr. Daussman was united in marriage to Miss Anna Platz, a 
daughter of Charles Platz, of Evansville, and unto them have been born 
eight children: Bertha, who died in infancy; George M. ; Ida; Louise; 
Elsie, now Mrs. Walter Holtzgrafe, of Memphis, Tennessee; Arthur; Os- 
car, and Grover. 

Mr. Daussman in the earlier days of his manhood showed a great in- 
terest in all matters pertaining to music and became prominent as a mem- 
ber of various German singing societies. He is a member of the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows, the Benevolent and Protective Order of 
Elks, the E. B. A., and was one of the charter members of the local lodge 
of Knights of Pythias. He has for many years been actively connected 
with the Evansville Manufacturers Association and holds membership in 
St. John's church. For over forty years he has been connected with the 
company of which he is an officer. He long ago demonstrated his ability 
as a business man and no citizen of Evansville is more earnest in urging 
the advantages of the city as a place of business or residence. Since early 
boyhood he has made America his home. He has given to this country 
the same fealty that, if he had remained in Germany, he would have given 
to his native land. As the head of a large family and the center of a 
circle which is made up of many friends and acquaintances, he is kindly 
and helpful. As a man among men he has through his business career 
attempted to discharge his responsibilities according to his best judgment 
and among the German citizens of Evansville he is recognized as a leader 
and in his party activities he has shown himself to be a capable and pro- 
gressive citizen. 



JUDGE PETER MAIER. 

Judge Peter Maier has engaged in the practice of law since i860, and 
the half century of his connection with the Indiana bar has been charac- 
terized by continued advancement in his chosen field of labor. With a 
mind naturally analytical and logical, his deductions are sound, his reason- 
ing clear and his arguments forcible, while in his application of a legal 
point, principle or precedent, he is seldom at fault. He has therefore 
gradually risen to the position which he has now occupied for a long 
period as a leading member of the Vanderburg county bar. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 375 

His birth occurred in the province of Hohenzollern, Prussia, August 
I, 1834. At the usual age he was sent to the public schools, where he 
continued his studies until his fourteenth year, when he crossed the At- 
lantic to the new world with his mother and the family of his uncle. They 
went direct to Cincinnati, Ohio, where he found work, being thrown on 
his own resources. Realizing the need of further education if he would 
make substantial advancement in the world, he worked steadily and ac- 
quired English sufficient to enable him to attend the Ohio Wesleyan Uni- 
versity at Delaware, Ohio. When his money gave out, he taught school 
to improve his finances. The first school he taught was eight years after 
he came to this country. Returning to college, he graduated in the scien- 
tific course with the class of 1858. After graduating he commenced the 
study of law in the oflSce of Sweetser & Hall in Delaware for two years. 
He then applied for and got the position of principal of the common 
schools at Delaware and in August, i860, applied for admission to the 
bar and after passing his examination was admitted. He at once started 
for Evansville, where he arrived September i and entered upon active 
practice. In 1864 the democrats of Vanderburg county, being without a 
German paper, persuaded him to commence the publication of a party 
organ in the German language, which he did, the first issue being in the 
latter part of May and was called the "Evansville Demokrat." He con- 
tinued its publication for over two years, when not wishing to give up 
his practice he sold the paper to Dr. Carl and Fred Lauenstein, who suc- 
ceeded in making it the leading German paper of Indiana. 

In 1865 the democrats of this district nominated him for judge of the 
common pleas court. Being an off year and only a few county officials 
were to be elected and the election being held at the beginning of October 
when the farmers, who composed the bulk of the democratic voters, failed 
to turn out, he was beaten in the four counties composing the district, and 
Judge John Pitcher of Mount Vernon was elected by a small majority. 
In 1872 the democrats nominated him for judge of the criminal court of 
Vanderburg, but this was the Greely campaign which proved disastrous 
to the democratic party and he went down to defeat with the balance of 
the ticket. He has since been connected with the profession in this 
city and his record has at all times indicated his splendid qualifications 
for the life work he has chosen and the ability which he displays in the 
presentation of his cases before the courts. He was connected with much 
of the important litigation tried in this district during a half century, and 
in 1890 he was elected judge of the superior court, serving on the bench 
until 1894. He was then renominated but was defeated. In 1874 he was 
appointed by the city coimcil as city attorney of Evansville and served 
imtil 1875. Again he filled that position from 1882 until 1883. While 
undoubtedly he is not without that honorable ambition which is so power- 
ful and useful as an incentive to activity in public affairs, he regards the 
pursuits of private life as being in themselves abundantly worthy of his 



376 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

best efforts. The success which he has attained is the reward of enter- 
prise. The zeal with which he has devoted his energies to his profession, 
the careful regard evinced for the interests of his clients and the assiduous 
and unrelaxing attention given the details of his cases have brought him 
a large business and made him very successful in its conduct. 

Judge Maier was married in Delaware, Ohio, to Miss Eliza M. Willey, 
on the 9th of June, 1864, and they have become parents of six children. 
They are members of the Episcopal church and Judge Maier has always 
been a democrat in his political views. Coming to the new world when 
a youth of fourteen, hoping to have better opportunities on this side of 
the Atlantic, he has made continuous progress. A man of broad learning 
and liberal knowledge, he ranks with those who have been prominent in 
molding public opinion and in shaping public thought and action. His 
cooperation has been given to progressive measures which constitute the 
impetus for the city's advancement and in the discussion of important 
public questions his opinions have carried weight. 



PAUL YOUNG. 



A man of sturdy instincts and strong will power, Paul Young has 
bravely borne up in the face of difficulty that would have overcome a man 
of less fortitude and he is recc^ized as one of the stanch citizens of his 
community. He was born in Scott township, Vanderburg county, where he 
has passed his life, June 4, 1874, and is the son of John and Susan H. 
(Reimann) Young, both of whom were bom in Germany and came to 
this country with their parents when they were children. The father was 
left an orphan at eight years of age and made his home with a man named 
Greiger. He grew up as a farm boy and was educated in the common 
schools, attending school in the winter and devoting his attention to the 
farm with an assiduity that marked all agricultural pursuits in the earlier 
days. As he became older he worked out by the month and at twenty- 
one years of age he was able to purchase a farm of eighty acres which he 
improved by earnest labor. By the purchase of additional land he in- 
creased the size of the farm to one hundred and twenty-one acres and this 
he operated with gratifying success until he was called away August 30, 
1904. Mrs. Young and her daughter Carrie are making their home, as 
they have for some time past, with the subject of this review. 

Paul Young continued at the parental fireside until he was nineteen 
years of age, having in the meantime made good use of the opportunities 
offered at the district school and having also become well acquainted with 
the pursuit of agriculture. Seeking for better educational facilities than 
were afforded in the district school, he became a student in Lockyear's 
Business College at Evansville, from which he was graduated with the 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 377 

class of 1902. At nineteen years of age he began to earn money for him- 
self by hiring out to neighbors and later traveled with a threshing machine 
for several years. For five years he was connected with a general store 
at Daylight, Indiana, at the end of which time he resigned his position 
and bought four acres of land in town, where he is now erecting a fine 
modem residence. 

Mr. Young is unmarried and his mother and sister have charge of the 
household. He is at the present time township assessor and has held this 
office for six years past to the general satisfaction of the tax payers. In 
1896 Mr. Yoimg suffered from an attack of rheumatism which developed 
into what is called white swelling, causing great pain for two years, when 
it was necessary to have the limb amputated. He bore up bravely and 
instead of proving a disaster, the ordeal has made of him a stronger and 
nobler character than would have been the case had he never been called 
upon to pass through this trying experience. He is a member of the 
Church of Latter Day Saints and as is indicated by the official position 
he holds, he possesses the respect and confidence of all who know him. 



THOMAS E. GARVIN. 



The legal profession has always embraced many of the brightest minds 
in America, and it has often been remarked that this republic is governed 
by lawyers. Countries of the old world are governed by families or by 
the aristocracy but here the lawyer has from the start borne a leading part 
and it is in a large degree through the influence and efforts of the mem- 
bers of the legal profession that the ship of state has been enabled to 
stem the current and ride safely into a secure harbor. The law has irre- 
sistible attractions under free institutions to the most promising young 
men, and when the subject of this review began to look about him as he 
started out upon his business career, he decided to cast his fortunes with 
the law. 

Thomas E. Garvin was bom at Gettysburg, Adams county, Pennsyl- 
vania, September 15, 1826, and the place of his birth several years later 
became the scene of the decisive conflict of the Civil war when the ad- 
vancing army of the Confederacy was turned back by the forces of the 
Union. Mr. Garvin was the son of John and Providence Garvin, both of 
Scotch-Irish ancestry, and after a preliminary education in tlie schools of 
his native town, he matriculated at Mount St. Mary's College, a famous 
old institution of Emmettsburg, Maryland, where at the age of fourteen he 
entered upon a systematic course of study leading to graduation in 1844. 
He was a diligent student and showed himself to be the possessor of a 
logical mind which readily grasped the principles of any subject to which 
he directed his attention. Soon after graduation he removed to Evans- 



378 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ville, where he has since resided. Few men now living have witnessed so 
many changes in the valley of the Ohio. In 1844 Evansville was a small 
river town — only one settlement of many on the Ohio river, having ap- 
parently equal advantages. As the years passed the city grew in trade 
and population far surpassing many other towns of more pretentious claims. 
One of the most important elements in the growth of Evansville is to be 
found in the character of the men who there located, whose energy and 
ability are indelibly impressed on one of the most prosperous and beauti- 
ful cities to be seen in the entire length of the Ohio. 

The young citizen from Pennsylvania lost no time in the preparation 
for the legal profession. He began study in the office of Hon. Conrad 
Baker, ex-governor of Indiana and one of the ablest members of the bar 
in the entire west. Being in need of funds, Mr. Garvin taught school for 
a time but on March 27, 1846, after an examination for admission, he 
was duly licensed as an attorney. Upon the invitation of his preceptor 
they became associated in practice under the firm name of Baker & Gar- 
vin. This partnership, which proved pleasant and profitable, continued for 
eleven years, the firm being identified with many of the most important 
cases in the state. Mr. Garvin gained an enviable reputation as a cogent 
reasoner who appealed with directness and force to both judge and jury. 
During his active years at the bar he was considered a most careful and 
vigilant attorney in whose hands it was safe to entrust the most intricate 
and important litigation. His clients have been among the most influen- 
tial citizens of the city and county. Of late years he has gradually with- 
drawn from active participation in important cases, but his interest in 
friends and in developments, both public and private, has continued. He 
is interested in real-estate litigation although his private afltairs demand a 
large part of his time. He has been connected with many enterprises as 
attorney, adviser, officer or stockholder and has contributed largely to- 
ward the advancement which has been witnessed in Evansville and 
throughout the surrounding country. He was one of the original prcn 
moters of the First National Bank of Evansville, and for many years was 
a m«mber of the board of directors. He was also one of the original 
trustees of the Willard Library and a member of the board to which the 
property was deeded. Although not a seeker for political honors, Mr. 
Garvin has taken a lifelong interest in all matters pertaining to city, county, 
state or nation. He was elected to the state legislature as a representative 
from Vanderburg county in 1862 and performed his duties to the general 
acceptance of his constituency. 

On November 11, 1849, Mr. Garvin was united in marriage to Miss 
Cornelia M. Morris at Pen Yan, Yates county. New York. She is a di- 
rect descendant of the Morris family of Morristown, New Jersey, which 
gained an enduring reputation through the patriotic services of Robert 
Morris, the noted financier of the Revolution, and others of the same 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 379 

The career of Mr. Garvin is a striking example of a self-made man 
who has accomplished a noble mission in life by adherence to principles 
founded upon truth and justice. His high character met with due recog- 
nition from his alma mater in 1876 when Mount St. Mary's College con- 
ferred upon him the honorary, degree of LL. D. To this honor he was 
justly entitled not only by his distinguished law record but on account of 
his rare attainments in history and polite literature. Respected and hon- 
ored by many friends and acquaintances, he looks back upon a life of 
activity and usefulness which has few regrets and many pleasing memo- 



JOSEPH F. REITZ. 



Carefully conducted business interests brought Joseph F. Reitz to a 
prominent position in mercantile circles and gained for him the honor and 
respect of his fellowmen. He is now giving his supervision to his real- 
estate interests but otherwise has retired from active life. His name indi- 
cates his German lineage. He was born in Westphalia, Germany, in 1837 
and was about seven years of age when the family came to the new world. 
His father, Francis Joseph Reitz, also a native of Germany, came to Evans- 
ville in 1842. 

Brought to Evansville in his early boyhood, Joseph F. Reitz pursued 
his education in the parochial school of the Trinity Catholic church on Third 
street. For more than two-thirds of a century he has been a resident of 
this city. In i860 he went to California, where he spent five years in gold 
mining. On his return to Evansville, in 1865, he engaged in the sawmill 
business with his brother, John A. Reitz. In 1870 he established a furni- 
ture and manufacturing business and was for twenty-five years located on 
Main street, conducting a wholesale and retail enterprise which is still in 
existence. In the '90s, however, Mr. Reitz sold out to the Jordan & Loesel 
Furniture Company, since which time he has given his attention to his real- 
estate investments. While engaged in merchandising his activities con- 
formed to the highest standard of commercial ethics. He carried large 
and well selected lines of goods both in the wholesale and retail depart- 
ments. He became one of the foremost representatives of the trade in 
Evansville, which in recent years has become an important center for the 
manufacture and sale of furniture. As he prospered and his financial re- 
sources increased he made investment from time to time in real estate until 
his property holdings are now quite extensive and return to him a gratify- 
ing annual income. 

Mr. Reitz was married in 1874, in Sainte Marie, Jasper county, Illinois, 
to Miss Louise Picquet, who was born at Boersch, Alsace, then a province 



380 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

of France. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Reitz were bom four children but only one 
is now living, Mrs. Charles Reitz Rudd. 

The parents hold membership in the Assumption church, in the work of 
which they take active and helpful part. In the city where he has so long 
lived Mr. Reitz has ever been regarded as a man of well balanced char- 
acter who has learned to correctly judge of the values of life and of those 
things which go to make up life's contact and experiences. Actuated by a 
laudable ambition, he has followed the path of progress to the goal of suc- 
cess, and honor and esteem have been accorded him all along the way. 



LOUIS A. DAUS. 



Louis A. Daus was one of the founders and promoters of the Anchor 
Supply Company and is the strong center of the business community in 
which he moves. He has developed an enterprise of extensive proportions 
hardly exceeded by any undertaking of similar character in the world and, 
moreover, his business balances up with the principles of truth and honor. 

Mr. Daus is a native of Cleveland, Ohio, born September i, 1862. His 
parents, August and Wilhelmina Daus, were both natives of Germany. 
The father came to this country when seventeen years of age and the 
mother when a maiden of twelve summers. They were married in Cleve- 
land, Ohio, and unto them were born twelve children, of whom Louis A. 
is the eldest. Spending his youthful days in his parents' home, he was sent 
at the usual age to the public schools of Qeveland, won promotion through 
the various grades and also spent one year as a student in the high school. 
His initial step in the business world was made as an apprentice to the 
sailmaker's trade and when he had mastered that pursuit he followed it 
in different parts of the United States, continually advancing in ability 
and experience. 

Following his arrival in Evansville in February, 1888, Mr. Daus took 
charge of the tent and awning department of the business of John J. 
Sinzich. He remained in that connection for four and a half years, at 
the end of which time he engaged in the tent and awning business on his 
own account, carrying on the undertaking successfully for about eighteen 
months, when he became associated with others in organizing and incor- 
porating the Anchor Supply Company, with which he has since been con- 
nected as vice president and as president. He has not only watched it 
grow from a small beginning to one of the largest establishments of the 
kind in the world but has been a most important factor in its continued 
development and in the extension of its trade connections until its ramify- 
ing interests reach out to all parts of the country. The plant has been en- 
larged to meet the growing demands of the trade and at all times has been 
equipped with the latest improved machinery to facilitate the work. Cor- 




LOUIS A, DAUS 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 383 

rect business principles and close conformity to the highest standards of 
business ethics have, moreover, been strong features in the success of the 
undertaking. While Mr. Daus confines his attention largely to the man- 
agement of the interests of the Anchor Supply Company, he was also a 
director and the vice president of the Mercantile National Bank for two 
and a half years after its organization and then became its president, so 
serving from July 1909, until it was merged into the Mercantile Trust & 
Savings Company in July, 1910. 

Mr. Daus was married in Evansville on the nth of July, 1888, to Miss 
Lavinia L. Biszant, who was born in Marietta, Ohio, a daughter of Philip 
and Lavinia Biszant, who came to Evansville when their daughter, Mrs. 
Daus, was only about thirteen years of age. She has been a very promi- 
nent church and society worker, being a recognized leader in the social 
circles of the city. By her marriage she has become the mother of two 
sons, Frank A. and John J. E>aus. 

In politics Mr. Daus is a republican, although not an active party 
worker. He belongs to the Knights of Pythias and the Royal Arcanum 
and in Masonry he has attained the degrees of Knight Templar and Noble 
of the Mystic Shrine. He is also a member of the Country Club and is a 
trustee of Grace Memorial church. He was a member of the National 
Guard of the state of Ohio for three years and acted as guard on the line 
of march during the progress of the funeral of President Garfield. He 
was also on duty guarding the body while it lay in state in the public 
square at Cleveland. Since coming to Evansville he has proved his worth 
as a citizen by his active cooperation in many projects for the public good, 
for he is interested in all that pertains to the material, intellectual, social 
and moral upbuilding of the community. He is, however, preeminently a 
business man with a genius for organization and an aptitude for successful 
management. 



HON. CHARLES G. COVERT. 

It has been said that one of the secrets of success in life is a good 
start; but all thinking minds will agree that good judgment, honorable 
character and an abundant supply of energy go a long way toward the 
accomplishment of a well rounded career. It is to all of these desirable 
elements that may be ascribed the enviable position occupied by the sub- 
ject of this review in the estimation of the people of Evansville and Van- 
derburg county. A native of the Hoosier state, his parents also belonging 
to this state, he grew up under the favorable influences of an advanced 
civilization and right worthily has he acquitted himself of the duties and 
responsibilities involved. 

Charles G. Covert was bom at Washington, Daviess county, Indiana, 
September 4, 1864, a son of Jacob and Maria Catherine (Gooldy) Covert. 



384 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

His father was born in Wells county and his mother in Lawrence county. 
Jacob Covert first saw the light of day August 13, 1837, and is said to 
have been the first male white child born in Wells county. He had the 
following children: Harriett, now Mrs. Grant L. Austin, of Washington 
city; Charles G., our subject; Martha, now Mrs. Charles P. Beard, of 
Evansville, and William H., of Washington, D. C. Jacob Covert was a 
well known newspaper man of Indiana. He was the founder of the Evans- 
ville Tribune, which he conducted for many years. Later he moved to 
Washington city, where he held a lucrative position in the government 
printing office in 1905. 

When he was about five years of age the parents of Charles G Covert 
took up their residence at Evansville and here he has since made his home. 
He attended the public schools and was graduated from the high school, 
but a large part of his education has been acquired in the printing office 
— accredited as being one of the best schools the world has known — and 
in contact with actual affairs of life. He learned the printer's trade in 
his father's office and after leaving school, at the age of sixteen, he "held 
cases" in the office of the Evansville Journal, continuing there for several 
years. He left the Journal in 1887 to become city editor of the Tribune, 
remaining with that paper for more than seven years, the last five years 
as managing editor. In the fall of 1894 he was nominated by the repub- 
lican party as sheriff of Vanderburg county and, having been elected to 
the office, resigned his position on the newspaper and entered upon his 
official duties in January, 1895. Having administered the affairs of the 
sheriff's office to the general acceptance of the people of the county, he 
was reelected in 1896 and served two terms, making a total period of four 
years. At the time of his first election he was twenty-nine years of age 
and the records show that he was the youngest man up to that time elected 
to the responsible position of sheriff in Vanderburg county. He proved a 
courageous and safe executive officer and won and retained the respect 
of officers and judges of the courts and all right-minded citizens. In 1899 
he was the republican nominee for mayor of Evansville but was defeated 
by a close margin of fifty-two votes. Again in the spring of 1901 he was 
presented as a candidate for the office and this time he won by a majority 
of eighty-eight votes. As mayor of the second city of the state he added 
to the reputation he had already gained as a man of good judgment even 
in matters pertaining to politics and one who has always aimed to per- 
form his whole duty to the best of his ability. He is a successful business 
man, being identified in an official way with several Evansville enterprises. 

Mr. Covert was happily married October 26, 1887, to Miss Grace L. 
Tucker, of Paris, Illinois, and three daughters have been born to them. 
Mr. Covert is a prominent factor in social and fraternal circles as well 
as in political affairs. He is a member of many organizations, among them 
the Masons, the Knights of Pythias, the Elks, Red Men, United Work- 
men, Royal Arcanum, Ancient Essenic Order of Buffaloes and the For- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 385 

esters of America. In these organizations his social quahties have found 
expression and through these and other channels he has found opportunity 
of extending a helping hand to many less fortunate than himself. At 
the age of forty-six the subject of our record is just in the prime of a 
useful life and it is the opinion of his friends that as the years pass he 
will add new honors to those already acquired. It is evident that no rec- 
ord of Vanderburg county would be complete without the name of Charles 
G. Covert. 



JAMES D. SAUNDERS. 

James D. Saunders is engaged in civil engineering, a business with 
which the name of Saunders has been connected through more than a 
half century. He was born in Bloomington, Indiana, December 4, 1853, 
a son of James D. and Mary Saunders. The father was born in Manches- 
ter, England, November 2, 1829, and crossed the Atlantic to America in 
the period of early manhood, establishing his home in Bloomington, In- 
diana, in 1851, being engaged as engineer in the construction of the New 
Albany & Salem Railroad. After three years of residence there he re- 
moved to Evansville in 1854, as engineer of the proposed Evansville & 
Cleveland Railroad, known as the Straight Line Railroad. He was elected 
city engineer in 1857 and held that office almost continuously until his 
life's labors were ended in death on the 6th of June, 1880. 

James D. Saunders was a pupil in the Evansville schools to the age 
of seventeen years, when he became assistant to his father, under whose 
direction he learned civil engineering. The thorough training and ex- 
perience which he gained in that connection well qualified him for the po- 
sition of county surveyor, to which he was elected in 1876. That his 
course in office was commendable is indicated by the fact that in 1878 he 
was reelected for a second term and in 1880 he was appointed city engi- 
neer by the city council and was elected to that office uninterruptedly until 
1887. Subsequently he followed his profession independently until 1889, 
when he was elected city engineer and filled the office until 1891. He 
afterward engaged in the engineering and contracting business on his own 
account for two years, when he was appointed a member of the board of 
public works and was again in office for four years, or until 1897. Through 
the succeeding eight years his attention was devoted to engineering and 
contracting in the field of his chosen profession, during which he was a 
member of the firm of James D. & M. S. Saunders, civil engineers, and 
of the contracting firm of Stinchfield & Saunders. He did the engineer- 
ing work for the Princeton Railway Company and the surveys for the 
Evansville & Rockport Railway Company. He also constructed the mound 
for the city water works and executed several contracts for street work. 



386 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

In 1906 he was again appointed to the position of city engineer and con- 
tinued his incumbency in the office until January, 1910, his appointment 
coming in recognition of the excellent service which he had previously 
done in the same position. On his retirement from the office he once 
more began contract work on his own account and in the field of civil 
engineering with his brother Miles S. Saunders, imder the firm name of 
J. D, & M. S. Saunders, has met with substantial success. Thoroughness, 
promptness and reliability have been salient features in his progress and 
they have become recognized as one of the most faithful and capable firms 
of civil engineers of this state. 

On the 13th of October, 1886, Mr. Saunders was married in Evans- 
ville to Miss Elizabeth McQuigg, a former resident of Ironton, Ohio, and 
they have become parents of four children: Mack, twenty-three years of 
age, who is now connected with the engineering department of the Louis- 
ville & Nashville Railroad Company; Betty, at home; J. Daniel, eighteen 
years of age, now attending business college ; and Mary, who died in early 
childhood. 

In the midst of a busy life Mr. Saunders has found opportunity for 
social enjoyment. He recognizes the obligations as well as the privileges 
of citizenship, and, keeping well informed on the political questions and 
issues of the day, gives his endorsement to the democratic party, for he 
believes that its platform contains the best elements of good government. 
He has been county chairman of that party twice, in 1892 and 1904. 
He has always been a resident of Indiana, and from early youth of Evans- 
ville. In his life he has manifested the enterprising spirit which has ever 
been a dominant factor in the upbuilding and progress of the middle west. 
He has never placed his dependence upon fortunate circumstances or fa- 
vorable environment, but has sought success in the field of earnest effort, 
unfaltering diligence and capability in the line of his chosen life work. 



PHIL COLTON GOULD. 

Among the progressive citizens of Evansville Judge Phil Colton Gould 
occupies an honorable place. Although only thirty years of age, he has 
won high standing in a profession which calls for the choicest ability in 
the land and demands a most arduous service. In his various acts he has 
shown wise discrimination and good judgment, and it is the opinion of his 
friends that no young lawyer of southern Indiana has greater possibilities 
of usefulness in his profession or of success in the various duties of life. 

Phil Colton Gould comes from a long line of English ancestry and 
was born at Evansville, January 11, 1880. He is the son of Charles F. 
and Jane (Colton) Gould, both of whom were natives of England, where 
they were united in marriage, later removing to America. Charles F. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 387 

Gould was a lawyer and newspaper man and one highly esteemed by his 
friends and devoted to his family. He departed this life at Evansville, 
February lo, 1904, and is survived by his widow and daughter, Rose 
Cave, both living at Evansville, besides the subject of this review. 

Phil Colton Gould received his preliminary education in the public 
schools of Evansville and completed an elective course in the high school 
in 1898. Turning his attention to the study of law, he matriculated at the 
law school at Valparaiso, Indiana, from which he was graduated June i, 
1901. He was admitted to practice before the supreme court of Indiana 
and before the federal court in June, 1901, and has since been actively 
engaged in his profession. From January i, 1908, to July i, 1909, he 
practiced in partnership with Daniel H. Ortmeyer, but at other times has 
practiced alone. On account of close application to his work, his health 
became impaired in 1908 and he spent three months traveling through 
California and Old Mexico, returning greatly improved in health and with 
broadened understanding of the country and its possibilities. 

Previous to attending law school, Judge Gould served for almost one 
year as deputy coroner under John P. Walker, his term of office extend- 
ing from December i, 1898, to September i, 1899. Although the duties 
of his profession have drawn largely upon his time. Judge Gould has, 
since reaching the age of maturity, taken an active interest in politics and 
has been an ardent advocate of the principles of the republican party. 
While not a self-seeker for office, he beheves that every patriotic citizen 
should hold himself in readiness to perform public duties when called 
upon by the proper authority and after his nomination by the republican 
convention for city judge, he entered the campaign with characteristic 
energy and was elected to the office in November, 1909, for a term of 
four years. He assumed the duties of his position on January 3, 1910, 
and has discharged its responsibilities in such a way as to meet with the 
hearty approval of the best class of citizens. He is a strong advocate of 
providing employment for chronic offenders while they are incarcerated 
in the county jail and has inaugurated a movement that may result in in- 
stituting a modern system in this regard. In cases where offenders . have 
been found guilty of previous violations of the law. Judge Gould calls 
for the police court record of each offense since January i, 1906, and in 
his decisions is governed largely by the previous record of the individual. 
He believes that habitual offenders should be more severely punished than 
those arrested for the first time — a class often amenable to reformation 
by light sentences. He has found that about half of the offenders at 
Evansville are "habituals," some of them having been arraigned before 
the city court as many as eight times a year for four years. The study 
which Judge Gould is making of the criminal classes is also being pur- 
sued along similar lines in many cities and results of great practical benefit 
to society are expected. He believes that the courts can assist in many 
ways in restraining evil-doers and in inculcating respect for law and or- 



388 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

der. This, however, calls for careful discrimination on the part of the 
court and the infliction often of severe penalties upon persistent offenders. 

Judge Gould was united in marriage at Chicago, July 14, 1909, to Roah 
(Archer) McCallister, widow of Alfred G. McCallister, of Mount Union, 
Indiana. Mrs. Gould was born at Battle Creek, Michigan, May 30, 1887, 
and is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Archer. She is a graduate of 
the Battle Creek public schools and is a lady possessing many graces of 
heart and character and a most attractive personality. Her parents were of 
English and French lineage. The home of Judge and Mrs. Gould is at No. 
1 1 12 Washington avenue. 

Judge Gould is identified with a number of social organizations, being 
a member of the Evansville Driving Club, the Central Turn Verein, the 
First Ward Republican Club and the Elks. He has taken a great deal of 
interest in athletics and at one time was the owner of the Evansville Base- 
ball Franchise, keeping it from being lost to Evansville in the season of 
1907. He organized a corporation with Harry Stahlhoefer as president, 
himself as vice president and six other public-spirited citizens, and succeeded 
in retaining the franchise during the season. Generally at the front and 
alive to the importance of all movements looking to the public good, he has 
taken a keen interest in the growth of healthy sentiment in the community 
and has attempted to contribute his share toward the permanent welfare 
of the city. He is a representative of the stalwart young men in America, 
who are coming forward into positions of responsibility as successors of 
worthy progenitors who made possible the present unexampled oppor- 
tunities for larger usefulness. 



ROBERT A. ANDRES. 



Among the enterprising and progressive citizens of Evansville, Robert 
A. Andres occupies an honorable place, not only on account of the business 
interests he represents but also on account of his public spirif and the use 
he has made of his opportunities to advance the welfare of those with whom 
he is immediately surrounded. As president of The Andres Company, he 
is widely known in the mercantile world and occupies an important posi- 
tion in a city noted for the ability and energy of its business leaders. He 
was born in Monroe county, Illinois, March 25, 1865, and is a son of George 
and Frances Andres. His father was a native of Alsace-Lorraine, Ger- 
many, born in March, 1822, and at the age of eighteen he came to America, 
locating in Monroe county, Illinois, where he was a wine grower for many 
years. His death occurred in October, 1866. 

Robert A Andres attended private and public schools at Springfield, 
Missouri, until twelve years of age and then became a student at St. Mary's 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 389 

College, St. Mary's Kansas, continuing for three years. At the age of fif- 
teen he returned to Springfield and began his business career as clerk with 
the Charles H. Heer Dry Goods Company. From the beginning he showed 
special adaptability to the dry-goods business and at twenty-three years of 
age he was elected a director of the company and four years later was made 
its secretary and treasurer. Mr. -Andres is not a man to be satisfied with 
a mediocrity of success. He belongs to the advance guard of the great army 
which never stands still and has supreme confidence that "just beyond" lies 
a fruitful country that is awaiting the magic touch of hand and brain to 
make it blossom as a garden of roses. In casting about for a wider field 
he discovered possibilities at Evansville that less discerning eyes had over- 
looked. Accordingly, in 1903, he removed to this city and bought out the 
dry-goods firm of the Hennessy-Robinson Company. The new firm was 
very soon incorporated and Mr. Andres was elected president. Under en- 
ergetic and capable management the business of the company grew rapidly 
and in 1908 extensive changes were made, among which was the extension 
of the store so as to make use of the second floor of the building, previously 
occupied as offices. At the same time the name of the company was changed 
to The Andres Company, of which Mr. Andres became president; F. X. 
Heer, of Springfield, Missouri, vice president; and R. C. Smith, secretary 
and manager. The company is now operating the largest exclusive dry- 
goods store in the state of Indiana and specializes in ready-to-wear garments 
for women and children. Branch offices are maintained at No. 14 Lispenard 
street. New York; No. 41, Cheapside, E. C, London, England; and 21-23 
Rue d'Hauteville, Paris. The foreign offices are made necessary on account 
of the fact that the company is a direct importer of costumes and European- 
made goods, for which there is a constantly increasing demand in this coun- 
try. 

In leaving Springfield, Missouri, for Evansville, Mr. Andres did not 
dispose of his business interests in the former place but retained them and 
is secretary of the Charles H. Heer Dry Goods Company of Springfield, 
as well as secretary and treasurer of The Heer & Andres Investment Com- 
pany, also of that city, a corporation handling real estate, stocks, bonds and 
securities. 

On January 30, 1901, Mr. Andres was united in marriage to Miss Vir- 
ginia Ferguson, of Springfield, Missouri. They have two children : Louise, 
now seven years of age; and Mary Elizabeth, six years of age. Mr. and 
Mrs. Andres are members of the Roman Catholic church and are among 
those most responsive to the numerous calls connected with the beneficences 
of that great organization. Mr. Andres is also a member of the Knights 
of Columbus, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Crescent 
and Country Clubs of Evansville and still retains membership in the Spring- 
field Club of Springfield. Missouri. As may be seen, he has many responsi- 
bilities and is a man of unusual keenness, not only in the rare faculty of 
foreseeing the possibilities in his special line of business, but in that other 



390 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

rare faculty of supplying the demands of a large and discriminating body 
of purchasers, after the demands have once been created. Herein is to be 
found the secret of the success of the leading business men of America. 



JACOB W. JENNER. 



Jacob W. Jenner, who was a prominent and widely known citizen of 
Evansville, devoted the greater part of his life to the banking business, 
wherein his ability won him promotion, while his uniform courtesy and 
obliging manner made him popular with the patrons of the old First National 
Bank, whch he represented as cashier. A native of Indiana, he was bom 
in the year 1851. He was of German lineage, a son of Adam Jenner, who 
came to Evansville from Germany when but nineteen years of age. In his 
native land he had learned the weavers' trade but as there was no employment 
of that kind to be obtained here, he worked at whatever he could secure. 
When twenty years of age he worked for a time in Washington. With many 
events of early progress in Evansville he was closely associated. He assisted 
in building the wharf in this city and for a time was employed on boats 
running out of Evansville. In that way he learned engineering and continued 
in active connection with steamboat interests for some time. He afterward 
accepted the position of engineer of the old Indiana mills until they were 
destroyed by fire, when he went to Mount Vernon, Indiana, where he occu- 
pied a position as engineer for five years. He then returned to Evansville 
in 1871, remaining one of the worthy and respected residents of this city 
until his death. He was a great reader and in this way educated himself, 
constantly broadening his knowledge, while his ready adaptability enabled 
him largely to use his learning in the practical affairs of life. He was a 
member of St. John's church, a man of great honor and respected by all. 

Adam Jenner married Louise Jenner, who, though of the same name, 
was not a relative. She, too, was bom in Germany and when fourteen years 
of age came to the United States. They were the parents of nine children, of 
whom seven reached adult age, while those still living are: Mrs. Mary L. 
Nugent; Thomas of Evansville; Elizabeth, of this city; Rose, the wife of 
Thomas Kerth, of Cairo, Illinois ; and Fred, of Newburg, Indiana. A 
daughter, Sarah, reached womanhood but is now deceased. 

The other member of the family to attain adult age was Jacob W. Jenner 
of this review. His early life passed without special event to differentiate 
it from that of most American youths. Study, work and play occupied his 
attention. Early in life, however, he manifested decided aptitude for business 
and remained throughout his life a forceful factor in those fields wherein 
he labored. His success and advancement were attributable to close appli- 
cation, unfaltering loyalty to the interests which he represented and prompt- 




JACOB \V. JEXNER 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 393 

ness in the discharge of all of his duties. When a young man he became an 
accountant in the old National Bank, where he was afterward made re- 
ceiving teller, and filled that position for thirty years, so continuing until 
his health compelled his retirement from active business. In the meantime, 
as his financial resources had permitted, he had operated to some extent in 
the field of real estate and had contributed to the improvement of Evansville 
in the erection of a large, fine apartment building at No. 507 West First 
street, a building largely used for doctors' offices. 

In 1879 Mr. Jenner was united in marriage to Miss Adeline Tenney, and 
they became the parents of a daughter and two sons : Irene, at home with her 
mother ; Will, now in Chicago ; and Lawrence, who is in this city. 

During the later years of his life Mr. Jenner was in poor health and on 
the 2ist of February, 1910, passed away. His business connections had 
brought him a wide acquaintance, which was further extended in his social 
relations and wherever known he was held in high regard. He possessed 
a kindly spirit, a genial disposition and cordial manner and was rich in those 
qualities which develop warm and enduring friendships. 



ROBERT S. RUSTON. 



Robert S. Ruston, deceased, was for several years one of the active 
business men and highly esteemed citizens of Evansville. His early home 
was on the other side of the Atlantic, for he was born in Chatteris, Cam- 
bridgeshire, England, in 1812, and was one of a family of five sons whose 
father was John Ruston. He acquired a good practical education in the 
common schools of his native land and was eighteen years of age when 
he came to the United States. He at once made his way to this county and 
first worked on the farm of his uncle, Mr. Peck, whose place is now occu- 
pied by the Oak Hill cemetery. Later he engaged in farming for himself 
in Blue Grass and for some years conducted the only tavern on the Spring- 
town road, now the site of the Country Qub. At one time he owned and 
operated a hay press at Inglefield, Indiana, and while engaged in that busi- 
ness met with an accident which resulted in the loss of both arms. It was 
in 1848 that he became a resident of Evansville and embarked in the whole- 
sale and retail feed business on Water street. During the Civil war he 
did a large business with the government and acquired considerable prop- 
erty in this city, but reverses overtook him and he lost much of his real 
estate. He then turned his attention to other lines of work and did heavy 
hauling on a very extensive scale in Evansville. 

Mr. Ruston was three times married, his first wife being Isabel White- 
head, of McCutchanville, who died on the 22d of September, 1843, and of 
the three children born to them John G. is the only one now living. For 
his second wife Mr. Ruston wedded Mrs. Mary Childs, of Evansville, 



394 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

who died soon after her marriage. On the 23d of October, i860, he was 
united in marriage to Miss Miriam White, who came to Evansville from 
London, England, and they became the parents of four children, namely: 
Walter, now deceased; Edgar A'., a resident of Davenport, Iowa; Isabel; 
and Edith. 

By his ballot Mr. Ruston supported the men and measures of the re- 
publican party and took an active interest in the welfare of his adopted 
country. He was a faithful and consistent member of St. Paul's Episcopal 
church and also was identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. 
Although handicapped, he made a success of life and gained the confidence 
and high regard of all with whom he came in contact either in business or 
social life. He passed away in 1881 but is still remembered by a host of 
friends in Evansville and the surrounding country. 



HON. JAMES H. McNEELY. 

The leaders are few. The great majority of men are content to follow 
in the paths which others have marked out rather than to put forth the 
efifort and exercise the courage that are always concomitants to original, 
definite action. Mr. McNeely, however, was of the class who mould pub- 
lic opinion and gained a large following because of the confidence placed 
in his ability — an ability that he himself developed through the exercise 
of effort, and a deep and continuous consideration of vital questions afifect- 
ing the welfare of the majority. He came to be known as one of the leading 
editorial writers of the middle west, and his attitude upon certain questions 
of government control led to his appointment to official positions in which 
it was evident that his interest in the public good surmounted all partisan- 
ship or desire for personal advancement. With the early history of Pennsyl- 
vania and of the middle west the names of his ancestors, the Hamiltons 
and the Laugherys, were closely connected, figuring prominently in the de- 
velopment and upbuilding of those sections of the country. Like his an- 
cestors. Mr. McNeely in time played an important role on the stage of 
public action. 

His life work found its expression in journalism, which shares with 
the platform the honor of being the most potent element in molding public 
opinion and shaping public destiny. Like the majority of men who attain 
prominence and success, his start in life was humble. He was apprenticed 
to the printer's trade in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, his native city, and after 
mastering the business to some extent went to Cincinnati, Ohio, and was 
among the early printers of that city who came into prominence later in 
life as a newspaper writer. Even while engaged on mechanical construc- 
tion of journals of that day his time and thought were in a measure centered 
upon contributions to magazines, and he was making of his mind a store 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 395 

house of wisdom from which he drew Hberally in later years. From Cin- 
cinnati he went to Indianapolis and secured the position of foreman of the 
composing room on the Indianapolis Journal. His ability was attracting 
attention, however, and successive promotions brought him to the position 
of city editor of that paper. He was also connected with other printing 
enterprises and the force of his individuality and his original thought were 
being made manifest. 

The telegraph, too, was becoming an important feature in the business 
development of the west and Mr. McNeely was one of the first to take up 
the study of telegraphy with the Morse key, becoming one of the pioneers 
of the profession. 

On coming to Evansville, Mr. McNeely joined with his brother, the 
late John Hamilton McNeely, and with F. M. Thayer, also now deceased, 
in the purchase of the Evansville Journal, which in time was sold to Claud 
G. DeBruler, at which time James H. McNeely, became half owner in 
the Richmond (Indiana) Palladium. After continuing in that connection 
for a time Mr. McNeely took charge of the Terre Haute Express as manag- 
ing editor and business manager, remaining with the paper for several years. 
He then returned to Evansville and purchased the interest of Mr. Thayer, 
the newspaper then becoming the sole property of himself and his brother. 

From that time forward he remained half owner of the Journal-News 
and as editor in chief of the paper he wielded a trenchant and facile pen. 
His interest in public affairs was not merely that of a casual observer. He 
was a close student of the signs of the times and looked beneath the super- 
ficial to find the real meaning of the work that was being accomplished 
and the purposes actuating it. He stood fearless in support of a project 
which he deemed beneficial to the community, and advocated strongly the 
cause of one whom he believed to be working for the general good. On 
the contrary, he was equally strong in his opposition of men or measures 
when he believed they were inimical to the welfare of the community or 
the state. 

It was not alone, however, in the field of journalism that his influence 
was widely exerted, for in many other ways his efforts promoted public 
progress or conserved the general good. He was prominent in affairs of 
the state as early as 1852, when the constitutional convention was called 
to give to Indiana its present organic law. He was acquainted, as few 
others have been, with the history of the state in detail, as well as in its 
more important features, and his memory of men and affairs was most 
retentive. He consented to hold but few public offices, his ambition being 
in other directions, but those which he filled were adorned by his presence, 
their duties being most promptly, capably and faithfully executed. At 
different times he served as postmaster of Evansville, assessor of internal 
revenue, and supervisor of construction of the Federal building. His work 
in the later connection was notable. Upon the completion of the building 
he returned nearly thirty thousand dollars of the money appropriated by 



396 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

the government for its construction. The records show that this is the only- 
instance where such an act has been performed. It stands, moreover, as 
positive proof of his integrity and honor in matters of pubHc trust. Fol- 
lowing the inauguration of President McKinley and the convening of con- 
gress, he was made a commissioner under the Indian bureau to contract 
with the Indians in the northwest for the sale of land. His work there was 
commented upon by the officials of the interior department as being of the 
best ever performed. Shortly before his death he was sent by the depart- 
ment to the state of Washington to act as government agent in the con- 
demnation of the land for the purpose of extending traction lines through 
Indian reservations. Completing his work there, he was sent to Muskogee, 
in the Indian Territory, for the performance of a similar work, and while 
thus engaged the illness developed that eventually terminated his life, on 
the 6th of April, 1902. 

Mr. McNeely came into political prominence with the organization 
of the republican party. He had been a close student of the political situa- 
tion of the country and felt that nothing was to be accomplished through 
the old organizations. He it was who penned the first editorial suggesting 
Abraham Lincoln of Illinois for the presidency ; was a member of the con- 
vention which resulted in the nomination of Lincoln and from that time 
forward to his death attended every republican national convention, serving 
as a delegate to several, including that at Minneapolis, when General Ben- 
jamin Harrison was renominated. He also attended many democratic 
national conventions and gained a clear insight into the position of the op- 
posing party. Politics never interfered with his personal relations and it is 
safe to say that he had as many warm friends among the prominent demo- 
cratic leaders of the state as among the republicans. His position on any 
vital question was never a matter of doubt, for his opinions were expressed 
clearly and forcibly, if concisely, and the logic of his position usually at- 
tracted wide attention. 

Mr. McNeely was married to Margaret Park, a daughter of the Hon. 
Elah Park, of Lorain county, Ohio, and to this union there were four 
children bom, the only survivor being Mrs. Edward N. Hill. 

While his duties in later years kept Mr. McNeely away from home it 
seemed that his interest in Evansville and her affairs was heightened, and 
again and again in his letters to the Journal-News he discussed city affairs 
and spoke of his longing to return to take part in the activities of Evans- 
ville. While he was not a member of any religious organization he believed 
in the teachings of Christianity and its beneficent influence on the world 
and said : "Religion, whatever any one may think of it, is the balance wheel 
of humanity. It saves the world from anarchy and without it we would 
all be barbarians. Chaos would reign." With Mr. McNeely friendship 
was inviolable and no service that he could perform for a friend was ever 
regarded as a burden. He lived beyond the allotted three score years and 
ten, nor did he live in vain, for his influence was at all times a potent ele- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 397 

ment for progress, reform and improvement. He was a man of action 
rather than of theory and accomplished results while others were dreaming 
of laying their plans. In the consensus of public opinion he ranks high 
among those men whose lives have been an ornament and a blessing to the 
state. 



JOHN GEORGE POTTS. 

John George Potts, one of the best known farmers and citizens of Van- 
derburg county, was born October 14, 1824, and died November 12, 1908, 
having spent his entire life on the farm upon which he was born and which 
is known as the Plympton place. He was the son of George and Mary 
Ann (Maidlow) Potts. The father was a native of Lancashire, England, 
and in 1817 came to America, purchasing the homestead on which the son 
resides. In 1820 he wedded Mary Ann Maidlow, a lady of sterling char- 
acter. He was better known as Dr. Potts. In the early '20s he went to 
New Orleans. Knowing full well the dangers of the dreaded yellow fever, 
he provided himself with the necessary preventatives which, however, he 
gave to an afflicted comrade, whose life he thus saved but lost his own 
for lack of medicine. 

John G. Potts was a man of most excellent character and habits, thor- 
oughly honest in every way and charitable in every good cause. He fully 
realized the benefits of education and frequently gave prizes to scholars in 
the schools of his township for excellence in their studies, thus stimulating 
them to earnest effort and close application in the work of the schoolroom. 
For more than twenty years he served as treasurer and trustee of the 
Erskine Benevolent Fund, was a director of the old State National Bank for 
almost a half century and served as township trustee for a number of terms. 
Being a self-educated man and of studious turn of mind, he read law and 
was admitted to the bar of Vanderburg county but never practiced. 

Those who have not lived to advanced years can have no accurate con- 
ception of the changes witnessed by Mr. Potts. The state was in its in- 
fancy, the wilderness was almost unbroken, wild animals and game were 
abundant and the trail of the savage wlas still to be seen during his early 
youth here, but with the years there came roads, farms and better condi- 
tions. The home of Mr. Potts was one of the fine old places of the county 
where through his many years the simple life was lived and hospitality was 
generous and genuine but without ostentation. He was a very valuable 
citizen, never seeking the public eye nor the prizes of official life. He kept 
no inventory of his virtues but his life was the incarnation of personal in- 
tegrity. He was ever jealous of his country's honor. 

In the fall of 1851 Mr. Potts was united in marriage to Susan Stephens, 
a daughter of Richard and Elizabeth Stephens. Mrs. Potts was born in 



398 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Dartmouth, England, March 22, 1822, and with a brother emigrated to 
America in 1849, locating in this county where their uncle and aunt, James 
and Esther (Weeks) Causon, settled in 1818. The latter emigrated to 
America the year previous but were detained in Pennsylvania, being ice- 
bound during the winter of 1817-18. In the spring the ice broke up, de- 
stroying their boat and in consequence many of their effects were lost. A 
second boat was constructed and set afloat. In the same year they landed 
in Evansville and made their settlement in Scott township, where they 
continued for a number of years, remaining in this county until death. 
However, they made several removals and in later life visited their native 
England. A short time after Miss Stephens and her brother came to this 
country she was married to Mr. Potts. To them were born four children, 
Esther, Edith, John and Causon. Of these Edith and John died in infancy. 
Esther was married to William H. Gudger, attorney-at-law. Causon was 
born December 2, 1856, and died December 27, 1893. He was a graduate 
of De Pauw University and was married in 1878 to Jennie F. Hall. Of Mr. 
Potts it can be truthfully said: 

None knew him but to love him. 

None named him but to praise. 



WILLIAM CLARKE. 



For more than a quarter of a century William Qarke has been con- 
nected with the house of Ragon Brothers, of which he is now secretary. 
Individual business ability and laudable ambition have brought him to his 
present enviable position, and he deserves much credit for what he has 
accomplished. He was bom in County Cork in the south of Ireland, a 
son of William and Mary (Bateman) Clarke. The mother died during 
the childhood of her son William and the father, who for many years was 
engaged in the shoe business, passed away in 1869. 

In the common schools of his native land the subject of this review 
pursued his education and in 1869, following his father's death, he crossed 
the Atlantic to the new world and resided with his brother in Cincinnati 
for a short time. Coming to Evansville he secured the position of book- 
keeper for the firm of Vickery Brothers, with whom he remained for thir- 
teen years, representing that house for a part of the time at its branch 
in Vincennes. In 1884 he became a representative of the wholesale grocery 
firm of Ragon Brothers, being appointed bookkeeper, in which capacity he 
displayed such capability, industry and fidelity that promotion followed 
and advancement has now brought him to the position of secretary of 
what is one of the most important commercial concerns of Evansville. 
One of his salient characteristics is the thoroughness with which he mas- 
ters every duty that devolves upon him and as he has advanced in his busi- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 399 

ness career, each forward step has brought him a broader outlook and 
wider opportunities. In his present position he has bent his energies to 
administrative direction and executive control and in constructive work is 
proving an element in the upbuilding of the house and the extension of 
its trade relations. 

In 1873 Mr. Qarke was united in marriage to Miss Rebecca Dunkel 
of Vincennes, Indiana, who died in 1906. They were the parents of four 
sons and a daughter. The four sons have all died, one in infancy, but the 
other three grew to manhood. They were educated in the public schools of 
Evansville and were filling responsible and lucrative positions at the time of 
their death. Samuel K. was assistant cashier with the Pennsylvania Rail- 
road Co., at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, at the time of his death in January, 
1903. Will F., the eldest, died at home in 1907, and George, the youngest, 
died at Denver, Colorado, in 1908, and was buried in Evansville. Fannie, 
the daughter, is now living at home. The family residence is at No. 11 17 
Washington avenue. 

Mr. Qarke is a member of the Masonic fraternity, with which he has 
been identified from the age of twenty-one years, and is a past master 
of the blue lodge. He belongs to Trinity Methodist Episcopal church and 
guides his life by its teachings. His has been an honorable record, char- 
acterized by fidelity to duty in every relation. In his business affairs he 
has never regarded any position as final but rather as the starting point 
for further achievement. Thus gradually he has progressed until he today 
occupies a prominent position in commercial circles, being active in the 
affairs of one of the leading commercial enterprises of Evansville. 



ALBERT J. ROSECRANS. 

Albert J. Rosecrans, who has devoted his entire life to farming, is now 
engaged in the cultivation of a tract of two hundred and thirty acres in 
Union township. He was born in Perry county, Indiana, on the 17th of 
October, 1870, and his parents, Adam Francis and Elizabeth (Wheatly) 
Rosecrans, were also natives of the same locality, where much of their lives 
was passed. Both are now deceased, the father having been called to his 
final rest in 1894, w'hile the mother's death occurred in August, 1891. Mr. 
Rosecrans had followed farming throughout his entire life save for the 
period of his service in the Civil war. In response to the country's call for 
troops his patriotism prompted his enlistment and he joined Company K 
of the Eighty-first Indiana Volunteer Infantry, doing active duty at the 
front until wounded at the battle of Chickamauga. 

Albert J. Rosecrans acquired his early education in the schools of Ken- 
tucky and afterward attended the schools of Perry county, Indiana. He 
was reared to farm life and early became familiar with the best methods of 



400 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

cultivating the soil and caring for the crops. His attention has been given 
to farm work from early boyhood and after his marriage he began farming 
on his own account. He now. rents and cultivates two hundred and thirty 
acres of land, which he has brought under a high state of improvement. 
His methods are practical, his industry unfaltering and his well directed 
labors have brought him substantial returns. 

On the 7th of October, 1897, at Rockport, Spencer county, Indiana, Mr. 
Rosecrans was united in marriage to Miss Ida M. Stevens, a daughter of 
Edward and Sarah (Butt) Stevens. The father, a native of Kentucky, is 
still living but the mother has passed away. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Rosecrans 
have been born three children, two daughters and a son: Blanch, eleven 
years of age; Hazel, a Httle maiden of ten summers; and Albert J., fi'vje 
years of age. The family have lived in Vanderburg county since 1898 and 
are well known in this community where they have a large circle of warm 
friends. 

Both Mr. and Mrs. Rosecrans attend the Methodist Episcopal church 
and are loyal to its teachings and generous in its support. His political 
views accord with the principles of the republican party but he has neither 
sought nor desired office, preferring to concentrate his energies upon his 
business interests. Whatever success he has achieved is due to his own 
labors for he has had no assistance from others depending entirely upon his 
industry and capable management for the attainment of prosperity. 



WILLIAM B. LE MASTERS. 

William B. Le Masters has been a member of the Vanderburg bar since 
June, 1905. He was born at Boonville, Cooper county, Missouri, November 
27, 1879. He is the son of Christopher C. and Sarah Le Masters and a 
grandson of Benjamin, a French pioneer of the Northwest Territory. The 
father is a native of Pike county, Indiana, while the mother's birth occurred 
in Pulaski county, Kentucky. In 1870 they removed to Kansas City, Mis- 
souri, where the father was engaged in business, while later they removed to 
Boonville, Missouri, where Lee, as he is familiarly known, was bom. In 
1882, the father's health becoming bad, they removed' to the father's old 
homestead in Pike county. 

In 1890 our subject removed with his parents to Evansville, where he 
has since resided, having been educated in the city schools. When the 
Spanish-American w&r broke out he was a student in the Evansville high 
school. His patriotic spirit aroused, he responded to the country's call for 
troops, enlisting for service in Company E, One Hundred and Fifty-ninth 
Indiana Volunteer Infantry. Near the close of the war he was furloughed 
on account of illness, never rejoining his command. The four years fol- 
lowing the war with Spain he spent in the west. Since his marriage in 




W. B. LE MASTERS 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 403 

June, 1904, to Miss Lena W. Cuny, he has resided continuously in 
Evansville. 

On the 1st of January, 1908, he was appointed deputy prosecuting at- 
torney for the first judicial circuit. At the expiration of his term (January 
I, 1912,) he will have served four years as assistant to Hon. O. R. Luhring. 
He is appreciative of the duties as well as of the privileges of citizenship 
and his cooperation can be counted upon as a factor in promoting projects 
and measures destined to improve and upbuild the city and county. 



GUS KANZLER. 



The business development of Evansville is attributable to the efforts of 
such enterprising men as Gus Kanzler, the secretary and treasurer of the 
Mechanics Planing Mill and also a partner in the contracting business con- 
ducted under the name of C. Kanzler & Son. He is numbered among those 
men who in the rapid and marvelous development and growth of the city 
have come to the front because of their recognition and utilization of oppor- 
tunities which have arisen in connection with the substantial expansion of 
industrial, commercial and financial interests here. The impossibility of 
placing fictitious values upon industry, determination and perseverance at 
once proves the worth of the individual who must base his rise upon these 
qualities. These elements have constituted the salient features in the ad- 
vancement of Mr. Kanzler, whose experience has been of wide range as 
he has advanced from the outset of his business career to his present credi- 
table position. 

A native of this city, he was born October 5, 1876, and is a son of Christ 
and Margaret Kanzler. He was a pupil in the public schools to the age of 
seventeen years and afterward attended the Evansville Commercial College 
for a year and a half. He then engaged with his father in learning the 
building contracting business and in 1903 was admitted to a partnership 
under the name of C. Kanzler & Son. They have been very successful, 
doing a general line of building contracting, erecting the Hercules buggy 
works, the Lincoln cotton mills, the Louisville & Nashville railroad station, 
the Southern Stove Works and the fine residences of William Cook and 
Edward Keichle. They now have in course of construction a one hundred 
thousand dollar courthouse at Spencer, Indiana. They have recently com- 
pleted a five-stall roundhouse, boiler and engine room for the Cairo & 
Thebes Railroad at Cairo, Illinois, and are engaged on the construction of a 
sixty thousand dollar postoffice building at Jefferson, Indiana. In 1905 Mr. 
Kanzler was elected secretary and treasurer of the Mechanics Planing Mill 
and is thus closely associated with the industrial activities of this city. 

On the i8th of October, 1899, Mr. Kanzler was married in Evansville 
to Miss Lilly Yost. They are members of St. John's Evangelical church 



404 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

and Mr. Kanzler belongs to Reed Lodge, No. 316, A. F. & A. M., the Elks, 
Red Men, the Liederkranz and Turner societies. His political allegiance is 
given to the republican party and, as every true American citizen should do, 
he keeps well informed on the questions and issues of the day, but aside 
from that takes no active part in politics, feeling that his business affairs 
make full demand upon his time and energies. He is alert to the oppor- 
tunities oflered in the fields in which he is operating and as the years have 
gone by he has achieved substantial success therein. 



FRANK P. CONN. 



Frank P. Conn, devoting his time and energies to general farming in 
Perry township, wias born in Wheeling, West Virginia, on the 12th of May, 
1844. His father, Dr. Isaac T. Conn, was a native of Beaver, Pennsylvania, 
who, after mastering the branches of learning, took up the study of medi- 
cine with Dr. Barker of Beaver as his preceptor. Later he was graduated 
from the Virginia Medical College, after which he continued in active 
practice until the outbreak of the Civil war, when he offered his services 
to the government as a surgeon and went to the front with the First Indiana 
Heavy Artillery. Dr. Conn, how|ever, was engaged in active hospital ser- 
vice most of the time and after the close of the war returned to Evansville, 
where he continued in practice until his death in 1873. He wedded Miss 
Mary Jane Porter, of Beaver, Pennsylvania, who, surviving him for almost 
twenty years, passed away in 1892. 

Frank P. Conn of this review was a youth of fifteen when his parents 
removed from his native city to Evansville. His education, begun in the 
public schools of Wheeling, was continued in this city. Later he engaged 
in teaching school in Vanderburg and Posey counties for a number of years, 
proving a capable educator whose labors were an important element in ad- 
vancing the educational interests of the state. For a time he occupied the 
position of deputy in the office of the state superintendent of schools. In 
1874 Mr. Conn was elected county superintendent of schools in Vanderburg 
county, filling the position for eight years, during which period he insti- 
tuted many needed reforms and progressive measures. His labors were at 
all times practical and produced satisfactory results. He was reporter on 
the Courier for some time and also a contributor on educational and politi- 
ical topics. In 1886 Mr. Conn took up a tract of unimproved land in 
Perry township, four miles west of Evansville, and by patient industry 
cleared it and erected a comfortable home thereon. This place, on the Red 
bank, (then an unfrequented road) is one of the most eligible and attractive 
situations about Evansville — a city noted for many lovely sites among the 
hills north and westward. 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 405 

In September, 1877, in Evansville, Mr. Conn was united in marriage to 
Miss Anna Burbank, a daughter of Bradford Burbank, a native of Hart- 
ford, Connecticut. Her father was engaged in the wholesale mercantile 
business in Evansville and was a prominent figure in commercial circles. 
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Conn have been born two sons and two daughters : 
Charles B., now a resident of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Virginia, at home; 
Isaac P., also in Pittsburg; and Helen M., at home. 

The family attend the Christian church. Mr. Conn gives active political 
support to the democratic party. He has been a cooperant factor in many 
progressive measures for the general good, has been active in extending 
the city limits of Evansville on the Perry township side and his labors have 
at all times been of a helpful and valuable character. He is widely known 
and his sterling qualities have gained him high regard. 



JACOB H. WEBER. 



Among the young men who are forging their w&y to the front in busi- 
ness circles of Evansville, winning a creditable place and name through 
energy, ability and determination, Jacob H. Weber is numbered. He is 
now the secretary of the Forest Product Manufacturing Company, to which 
position he was chosen December 29, 1909. He was born in Evansville, 
July 22, 1883, his parents being Fred W. and Catharine Weber. Like a 
large majority of the citizens who came to Evansville in the middle of the 
nineteenth century, he was of German birth, his natal day being August i, 
1854. He arrived in Evansville in 1866 and afterward established a beer 
bottling business, the first of the kind in the city. In this he continued suc- 
cessfully until 1889, when he turned his capital into other channels and 
became foreman of the Evansville Hoop Company, with which he was as- 
sociated until 1907. In that year he became one of the organizers of the 
Forest Product Company, of which he was elected treasurer and is still 
active in the management and conduct of that business, being a worthy 
representative of the German-American citizens who have been the up- 
builders and promoters of Evansville's business development. 

Jacob H. Weber attended the Catholic parochial schools until fourteen 
years of age, at which time he became a pupil in the Spencerian Business 
College, where he continued his studies for two years, thus qualifying by 
thorough training for the duties which come as one commences business 
life. He then accepted a clerical position in the local freight office of the 
Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad Company, with which he was con- 
nected for seven years, his long continuance in the position proving his 
capability, efficiency and faithfulness. At the end of that time he became 
a salesman for the Evansville Hoop & Stave Company, with which he was 
associated until December, 1909, when he was elected secretary of the Forest 



406 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Product Company. This has been very successful from the beginning-, the' 
trade growing along substantial and healthful lines, bringing a good return 
for the capital invested and for the industry put forth. 

On the i6th of January, 1907, Mr. Weber was married in this city to 
Miss Minnie Boyer, and they have one child, Mary Denis, now a year old. 
Mr. Weber is a Catholic in religious faith and holds membership with the 
Knights of Columbus. In political thought he is independent, nor holds 
to the leading of any party but casts his ballot as his judgment dictates. 
He is a young man well known in Evansville and has many friends with 
whom he has been acquainted from his boyhood days. 



JOHN F. OILMAN. 



Seventy years ago John F. Oilman, who is a well known real-estate 
man and builder of Evansville, first saw the light of day. He was bom 
in this city in a house that stood at the comer of Main and Second streets 
in 1840. Few men now living are better acquainted with the development 
of the city and the wonderful changes which have taken place on the 
Ohio river, which was formerly the great artery over which floated the 
products of the early factories and mills on their way to market at St. 
Louis, New Orleans and the intervening cities. Over this route, in boats 
which they had built with their own hands, came thousands of settlers who 
established homes along the water courses or at the edge of the prairie in 
Indiana and Illinois, many pushing their way w^estward until they found 
a resting place on the shores of the Pacific. Mr. Oilman has watched Evans- 
ville grow from a village to a thriving city and has seen the rude log cabin 
of the pioneer transformed into a modem dwelling with all the comforts 
and elegancies that appeal to the cultivated taste of the present day. He 
saw the steamboat superseded by the locomotive, the prairie schooner by 
the Pullman palace car and the hand sickle and cradle, so common in the 
harvest fields of the pioneer period, succeeded by the wonderful reapers and 
binders that have assisted so materially in making scientific farming a reality 
and have marked a new era in the peaceful achievements of men. Here as 
a young man he saw the soldiers going to fight for the Union ; he saw them 
return and resume the vocations of peace that have changed a vast, un- 
developed country into the most flourishing portion of the globe. Through 
all this experience has he lived and in the same degree has he been of it a 
part. 

The parents of our subject, John and Mary Oilman, came to Evansville 
in 1832. They gave their son the advantages of an education in the public 
schools and later he became a student in a business college where he was 
inducted into subjects of practical application in his future career. After 
leaving school he became self-supporting as a clerk and bookkeeper, but for 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 407 

many years he has been engaged in handling real estate and also as a build- 
ing contractor. By diligence and good judgment he acquired a com- 
petence and he is now enjoying the fruits which are usually the results of 
conscientious application. 

In 1864 Mr. Gilman was married, the lady of his choice being Miss Alice 
Spencer, a daughter of Hon. Charles Spencer, of Memphis, Tennessee. 
Before her marriage she was principal of one of the public schools of Mem- 
phis. Two daughters were born of the union : Ursula and Theo. 

Mr. Gilman is recognized as a substantial representative citizen by those 
with wlhom he has long been associated and one who has always been deeply 
interested in the material, mental and moral welfare of the community. 
By his integrity and honesty in all business dealings he attained a standing 
which is to any man of inestimable value and in the long run is worth much 
more than all the honors that could be purchased by the use of money. 



GAINES A. CONDIT. 



Gaines A. Condit, vice president and general manager of the Central 
Mutual Insurance Company, was bom in Boonville, Indiana, December 17, 
1864, his parents being Rev. Byram E. L. and Asenath Condit. The father 
was born in 1832 upon a farm at Livermore, Kentucky. He was sixteen 
years of age when his parents died. He then went to the home of an uncle 
at Millersburg, Indiana, and afterward served as mail carrier on the old 
canal. His education was largely acquired through his own efforts with- 
out the assistance of others. While acting as mail carrier he took up the 
study of theology, for he had determined to devote his life to the work of 
the Christian ministry, and in 1862 he was ordained in the Baptist church. 
On the 3d of August, 1851, he had married Asenath Osborn, who was 
born near Boonville, Indiana, in 1833. His ancestors came to this country 
about 1678, settling first at what is now Newark, New Jersey, while later 
representatives of the family went to Ohio and afterward others went to 
Kentucky. Both the Rev. B. E. L. Condit and his w'ife are still living, and 
in many places where they have resided their labors have proven a most 
potent element in moral development and progress. For many years the 
father officiated as minister of the Pleasant Ridge Baptist church near 
Boonville, Indiana. 

As a public school student, Gaines A. Condit mastered the lessons that 
constitute the common curriculum, and at the age of twenty years he took 
up the profession of teaching, which he followed for two years in Tennes- 
see. Returning to Indiana, he located first in Warrick county and taught 
in the district schools of Owen, Lane, Pigeon and Boone townships for ten 
years. Coming to Evansville, he has been continuously identified with. in- 
surance interests in this city. He was first with the Prudential Life In- 



408 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

surance Company as agent for a year, and was afterward made assistant 
superintendent at Evansville, so continuing until 1904. He then organized 
the Union Mutual Insurance Company, of which he was elected vice presi- 
dent in 1905. This company consolidated with the Central Mutual Insur- 
ance Company of Evansville, and of the new organization he was chosen 
vice president. The company has met with substantial success, the busi- 
ness growing each year and its continued development is assured from the 
fact that it is carefully organized, is based upon well formulated plans and 
has at its head men capable of executing such plans. 

On the 27th of April, 1890, Mr. Condit was married in Boonville, In- 
diana, to Miss Esther McCool and unto them have been born two chil- 
dren, Inez and Forrest, aged respectively eighteen and ten years, the former 
a student in the high school and the latter yet in the grades. The family 
attend the Baptist church and are. well known socially in this city, the 
hospitality of many of the best homes of Evansville being freely accorded 
them. Mr. Condit votes with the democratic party and is ever loyal to its 
interests, but does not seek nor desire political preferment. He belongs 
to the Knights of Pythias fraternity, and manifests not only in the organ- 
ization but in other relations of life, those genial qualities which win friend- 
ship and kindly regard. 



CHARLES SCHOENBACHER. 

Charles Schoenbacher, one of the prominent and successful dairymen of 
Vanderburg county, conducting a good business in Center township, was 
bom in Switzerland, September 14, 1853, his parents being Joseph and 
Mary Schoenbacher, wlho were also natives of the land of the Alps. The 
father died in that country, after which the mother came with her son 
Charles to the new world, settling in Evansville. 

Charles Schoenbacher was at that time twenty-eight years of age. His 
education was acquired in the schools of his native country and in early 
manhood the desire to come to the new world grew in him as he heard fa- 
vorable reports concerning the opportunities and advantages here offered. 
His brother had preceded him to the United States and after reaching this 
county he entered his brother's dairy and was employed in connection there- 
with for about ten years. During that period he carefully saved his earn- 
ings until 1891, when he felt that his capital was sufficient to enable him to 
engage in business on his own account. He then opened a dairy in High- 
land, Center township, and has since successfully conducted the business 
with the exception of a period of two years when he was engaged in buy- 
ing cattle. He now has a fine building and is conducting dairying inter- 
ests on an extensive scale. His brother died in 1906. 

Mr. Schoenbacher has never married and has always made his home 
with his brother and his wife. He adheres to the religious faith of thte 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 409 

family, being a communicant of the Catholic church. He also belongs to 
Eagle Lodge, No. 427, of Evansville, and his political endorsement is given 
to the men and measures of the democratic party. He has never had occa- 
sion to regret his determination to come to the United States with its broader 
business opportunities, for as the years have passed he has progressed along 
the path of prosperity and is now at the head of an extensive and profitable 
business. 



WILLIAM EISSLER. 



Center township, within whose borders William Eissler now makes his 
home, was also the place of his birth, and his natal day was March 13, 
1859. He has always followed farming and his perseverance, enterprise 
and determination have made him a representative agriculturist of the com- 
munity. His parents were Jacob and Mary (Steiger) Eissler, both of 
whom were natives of Germany. On coming to America they chose Evans- 
ville as a favorable place of location, arriving here in early days. The father 
purchased a farm of sixty-six acres and at once began to clear away the 
native forest growth with which his land was covered. It was an arduous 
task, but persistently he continued his labors until the work was accom- 
plished and the place was divided into productive and well tilled fields. In 
the midst of his farm he erected a good residence and other buildings, and 
as time passed on he added to his place a tract of eighty-six acres. His 
life was a busy and useful one, given to general agricultural interests until 
his death, which occurred in August, 1887. His wife passed away in 1884. 

The experiences of farm life were those which came to William Eissler 
in his youth. His time was divided between the work of the fields, the 
duties of the schoolroom and the pleasures of the playground. In the sum- 
mer months he aided his father and after leaving school continued to work 
with him until twenty-five years of age, when he was married and started 
out independently. At that time he purchased forty acres of land, which 
he at once began to clear and improve. The results of his labors are seen 
in the fine crops which he gathers. He has extended the boundaries of 
his farm until it is now a tract of fifty-two and a half acres, equipped with 
modern conveniences. He uses the latest improved machinery to facilitate 
the work of the fields, and the entire place presents an attractive, neat and 
thrifty appearance. In the midst of the farm stands a comfortable resi- 
dence, a good barn and outbuildings that shelter grain and stock from in- 
clement weather. 

It was in 1884 that Mr. Eissler was united in marriage to Miss Anna 
Sweitzer and unto them have been born eight children: Maggie and Clara, 
both of whom are married and live in Evansville; Willie, twenty-one years 
of age, who is now working as a farm hand ; George, Edith, Lorin, Oliver 



410 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

and John, aged respectively nineteen, seventeen, fifteen, thirteen and eleven 
years, and all yet at home. 

The family are members of the Christian church, in the work of which 
they are active and interested. Mr. Eissler has guided his entire life by 
its teachings, and is regarded as an upright, honorable man, well worthy 
the high esteem which is uniformly accorded him. His political allegiance 
is given to the democracy, but he has never sought nor desired office, pre- 
ferring to concentrate his energies upon his business affairs. 



NAPOLEON B. HAYWARD. 

A man of strong character and marked individuaHty, Napoleon B. Hay- 
ward left his impress upon Evansville in its business development and in 
its factors of public concern. He was bom in Jefferson county, Kentucky, 
in 1825, and his life record scarcely covered a half century, for he passed 
away in 1874. His father, James Hayward, was a native of England and 
came to America, making his home for many years in Kentucky, removing 
from Jefferson county to Smithland. He was a man of broad education 
and of wide reading, prominent in the community where he made his 
home, and his great admiration for "the Little Corporal of France," is 
indicated by the name which he gave to the subject of this review. His 
business was that of buying and shipping cattle. 

Following the removal of the family to Smithland, Kentucky, Na- 
poleon B. Hayward, then a small boy, soon afterward began his education 
in the schools there. He was still young when his father died and was 
thus left to shift for himself. Moreover, the responsibility of aiding in the 
support of his family devolved upon him. He early learned the trade of 
an engineer and followed engineering and kindred pursuits on the Tennes- 
see river and its tributaries for many years. When the division of the 
country concerning the slavery question arose, his sympathies were with 
the north, and the unpleasant conditions thus brought about made him leave 
his native state in 1868 and come to Evansville. Here he became a mem- 
ber of the firm of Harper, Hayward & Summers, wholesale dealers and 
manufacturers of tobacco on First street. But the river had long been his 
life, and he longed to get back to it. Accordingly he sold his mercantile 
interests in Evansville and became owner in partnership with Captain 
Thomas and Alfred Edwards of the steamer Glasgow, running on the Ohio 
and Cumberland rivers. It would be difficult to find a river man more 
thoroughly familiar with those streams. He knew every shoal and every 
turn, and to him there was a fascination and pleasure in that life which 
no commercial enterprise could aflford him. He was, however, connected 
with Evansville's business interests as one of the organizers of the first 




N. B. HAYWARD 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 413 

building and loan association here, known as the Evansville Building & 
Loan Company. 

Mr. Hayward first married Eliza Randall, by whom he had one daugh- 
ter, Mrs. S. A. Smith, now a resident of Shreveport, Louisiana. In Louis- 
ville, Kentucky, in 1857, he was married to Miss Virginia Quertermous, 
a native of Louisville and a daughter of T. J. Quertermous, a contractor 
of that state. Unto them were born eight children, of whom six are liv- 
ing: Mrs. L. Flickner, of Evansville; Walter S., who is in the west; James 
T., of Seattle, Washington; Charles W., of this city; Bertha and Ruby, 
both at home. Mrs. Hayward and her family have made their home in 
Evansville since her husband's death, and are well known socially in this 
city. 

He took an active interest in the welfare of the community in which 
he lived and was a devoted member of the Trinity Methodist Episcopal 
church. He held membership in Reed Lodge, A. F. & A. M., and his father 
attained high rank in that order. His political endorsement was given to 
the democracy and he never faltered in his allegiance to a cause or prin- 
ciple in which he believed. He attained a comfortable share of this world's 
goods, being considered a wealthy man in his day. His strong character 
commanded respect, his genial qualities awakened admiration and regard, 
and his sterling traits gained for him the confidence of all with whom he 
came in contact. 



WILLIAM V. COOPER. 

William V. Cooper, filling the office of deputy county treasurer, was 
bom in Vincennes, Indiana, July 7, 1872, a son of Elder and Hannah 
Cooper. His father, who was born near Dublin. Ireland, in July, 1837, 
came to Evansville in 1857 when a young man of twenty years. 

William V. Cooper pursued his education through successive grades in 
the public and high schools of Vincennes and Evansville until 1887, after 
which he attended the Cumick & Rank Business College for a period of 
nine months, acquainting himself with methods in vogue in the business 
world. He afterward became a salesman for the firm of Switzer, Calwell 
& Company, wholesale dealers in notions, with whom he remained for 
three and a half years. He next entered the employ of William Hughes, 
who was engaged in the wholesale millinery business, acting as salesman 
of that house for three years. The succeeding period of four years was 
devoted to service as deputy state oil inspector, and for two years he was 
with the A. P. Henrickson Hat Company as salesman. On the expiration 
of that period he was appointed by O. L. Klauss to the position of deputy 
in the county treasurer's office and has since continued in this position, dis- 
charging his duties with capability and fidelity that leads to his retention 
in the office. 



414 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

Mr. Cooper belongs to the National Union, to the Military Order of 
the Loyal Legion, and to the Methodist church, while his political allegiance 
is always given to the republican party. His has been a well spent life, 
and sterling worth and attractive social qualities as well as his business 
ability have gained him a firm hold on the regard of many friends. 



ALBERT E. SWOPE. 



Albert E. Swope is the proprietor of the Elm Grove Stock and Poultry 
Farm, a valuable property equipped with modern improvements and de- 
voted largely to the raising of fine stock and poultry. He is a business 
man of practical ideas and enterprising spirit and his firm determination 
enables him to carry forward to successful completion whatever he un- 
dertakes. He was bom in Evansville, December i6, 1870, and is a son 
of Albert .and Sarah A. (Hornby) Swope, who were likewise natives of 
Vanderburg county, where the family has been represented from an early 
day. When a young man, the father learned the carpenter's trade, and 
eventually engaged in contracting, but afterward returned to agricultural 
life, purchasing one hundred and ten acres of land in Center township. 
It was covered with timber, but with characteristic energy he began to 
clear away the trees, burning the brush and preparing the fields for culti- 
vation. His labors were soon manifest in the excellent appearance of the 
place, which indicated the careful supervision of a practical and progres- 
sive owner. He erected thereon a fine residence, substantial barns and 
commodious outbuildings and carried on fanning with success until 1893, 
when he returned to Evansville and again engaged in the contracting busi- 
ness. His skill and knowledge in that line enabled him to command a 
liberal patronage and he always employed good workmen, so that in the 
execution of contracts he met the desires of his patrons and won satis- 
factory returns. He continued in that business until his death, which oc- 
curred in January, 1904. For more than a quarter of a century he had 
survived his wife, who died in 1875. They were numbered among the 
highly respected residents of their native county, their good qualities gain- 
ing them the friendship of all with whom they came in contact. 

Albert E. Swope remained at home until seventeen years of age, when 
he entered Wabash College at Crawfordsville, Indiana, attending school 
there for two terms. He then returned to Evansville and secured a position 
in the postoffice, where he was employed for four years. At the end of 
that time he fell heir to one hundred and fifty acres, all in Center town- 
ship, and took up his abode upon the farm, which he has since owned and 
operated. He has doubled the value of his land by tiling and draining, thus 
greatly enhancing its productiveness. He has also put up good outbuild- 
ings for the shelter of grain and stock and his place, known as the Elm 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 415 

Grove Stock and Poultry Farm, is considered one of the model properties 
in every respect. He gives his attention largely to the raising of high 
grade stock and poultry, and in this connection has done not a little to 
improve the grade of stock handled in the county. His farm is lacking in 
none of the modem accessories, and the machinery which he uses is al- 
ways of the latest pattern. 

Mr. Swope was united in marriage to Miss Katie M. Young, a daughter 
of Benjamin and Harriet Young, natives of England and Indiana, re- 
spectively. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Swope have been born seven children: 
Mary A., nineteen years of age, who is now engaged in teaching school; 
Ralph, aged seventeen years, who is learning the jewelry trade in Terre 
Haute, Indiana; C. Elnora, fifteen years of age; Laura H., aged ten; 
Katherine S., seven years; Alice E., four; and A. Isabelle, two years of 
age. 

Mr. Swope and his family attend the Methodist Episcopal church, in 
which he and his wife hold membership. For eighteen years he has been 
a member of the Woodmen of the World, and he is also active and promi- 
nent in other public interests, being now chairman of the Vanderburg 
Farmers Institute, a position which he has filled for four years, while for 
six years he was its secretary. In this connection he puts forth every effort 
possible to stimulate an interest and pride in the farm and its methods of 
progressive development. Politically he is a republican and for four years 
served on the township advisory board. His interests have never been self- 
centered, but have reached out into those fields where the social, intel- 
lectual, material and moral welfare is involved, and his aid and coopera- 
tion are always given on the side of reform, improvement and progress. 



RAGON BROTHERS. 



Around the name of Ragon Brothers centers much of the commercial 
history of Evansville, for the firm has long occupied a leading position in 
the business circles of the city, conducting an extensive wholesale grocery 
house. Their establishment is indeed one of the landmarks of Evans- 
ville, and the name has long been regarded as a synonym of enterprise, 
business integrity and excellence. 

The Ragons are among the oldest families of Evansville. They came 
from Kentucky after the war and established a wholesale grocery house 
under the firm name of Ragon Brothers, the founders and partners being 
Edward G. and F. H. Ragon. They were both men of undaunted energy 
and unfaltering perseverance, and they established the business along safe, 
conservative lines which have since been followed, the policy which they 
inaugurated having been continued throughout forty-five years, in which 
without a day's interruption this house has gone steadily forward. Ferd. 



416 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

H. Ragon died a number of years ago, but his brother continued af~the 
head of the business for a quarter of a century and then passed away on 
the 27th of February, 1902. Not only did he rank with the city's most 
enterprising and progressive business men but was always a willing con- 
tributor to any project or movement which he deemed of value in pro- 
moting the city's welfare. 

Since his death Chester L. Ragon has become the active head of the 
house, and in 1902 the business was incorporated. The officers are C. L. 
Ragon as president; H. R. Dunavan, vice president; and William Clarke, 
secretary. All have been connected with the business for many years, so 
that long experience made them familiar with the most advanced commer- 
cial methods, with the demands of the public and the possibilities for the 
enlargement of the trade. 



MAJOR ALBERT C. ROSENCRANZ. 

Major Albert C. Rosencranz, president of the Vulcan Plow Company 
of Evansville, Indiana, is no more widely and favorably known because of 
his business interests, which, however, are extensive and important, and 
constitute a prominent element in the industrial activity of Evansville, 
than for his philanthropy and public spirit. He was born in Baerwalde, 
near the city of Berlin, Prussia, October 26, 1842. His father, C. F. 
Rosencranz, was a watchmaker by trade and a man of some prominence 
in the affairs of his native village. He left Prussia on account of his con- 
nection with the revolution of 1848 and came with his wife and children 
to America in 1850, settling first near Evansville, Indiana, while later he 
became a resident of the city and resumed work at his trade. His love for 
his native land, however, led him to return to Europe in 1867, and he 
passed away there twenty years later, having for about three years survived 
his wife, Mrs. Dorothea (Nohse) Rosencranz, who died in 1884. 

Albert C. Rosencranz acquired his education in private schools, and in 
his youthful days was taught the watchmaker's trade by his father. At 
the outbreak of the Civil war he assisted in organizing Company A of the 
First Regiment of the Indiana Legion, of which he was made orderly ser- 
geant, and on the 4th of August, 1862, was mustered into the United States 
service, having been commissioned first lieutenant of Company F, Fourth 
Cavalry (Seventy-seventh) Regiment Indiana Volunteers, for three years' 
service. He was promoted to the captaincy February 25, 1863, and was 
commissioned major May i, 1865, but was never mustered in with the rank 
of major. His muster out was at Nashville, Tennessee, June 29, 1865. His 
military record is a highly honorable one. He was in command of General 
Ebenezer Dumont's bodyguard from September, 1862, until January, 1863 ; 
in March, 1863, he was detailed for courier service under General Rose- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 417 

crans between Nashville and Murfreesboro, and Murfreesboro and Wood- 
bury, Tennessee, and acted in that capacity until June, 1863. He next took 
part in the Tullahoma and Chattanooga campaigns, terminating in the 
battle of Chickamauga, and afterward moved with his regiment in pur- 
suit of General Wheeler's forces and then proceeded to the relief of Gen- 
eral Bumside in East Tennessee. His command spent the winter in that 
locality, holding the advanced position in all the cavalry movements and 
engaging in numerous skirmishes, notably at Mossy Creek, Talbot's, Dan- 
dridge and Fair Garden, where Captain Rosencranz commanded the Second 
Battalion of the Fourth in most gallant manner. While in East Tennessee 
the regiment was forced to live off the devastated country for two months 
and nearly starved to death. In March, 1864, the command was ordered to 
join Sherman's army and took part in the famous Atlanta campaign. Cap- 
tain Rosencranz was wounded in the foot and captured six miles north of 
Dalton, Georgia, on May 9, 1864, being in command at the time of a bat- 
talion of five companies of his regiment engaged in making a reconnois- 
sance as part of the Second Cavalry Brigade under command of General 
O. F. LaGrange, who was also taken prisoner. He was held a prisoner 
for ten months at Macon and Savannah, Georgia; Charleston and Colum- 
bia, South Carolina. When at Charleston he was one of the six hundred 
federal officers whom the enemy designed to keep within the range of the 
Union fire for three months. He was afterward sent to Columbia, South 
Carolina, and was finally held at Charlotte, North Carolina, until March, 
1865, when he was paroled at Goldsboro and once more entered the federal 
lines near Wilmington, North Carolina. He was then sent home from 
Annapolis on a thirty days' furlough, reporting at Camp Chase, Ohio, 
where he was eventually exchanged May 3, 1865. He then rejoined his 
regiment on the march in Georgia and was mustered out with it in June, 
as above stated. 

Upon leaving the army he returned to his home in Evansville, where 
he engaged in the jewelry business until 1868. In that year he married 
Miss Mary, daughter of William Heilman, and became office manager for 
the William Heilman Machine Works, which position he retained for five 
years. Confinement to office work, however, impaired his general health, 
and in 1873 he went to Missouri, where he engaged in stock-raising. Losing 
both of his children within four weeks at Kirksville, Missouri, he leased 
his interests there in December, 1876, and returned to Evansville. Here, 
on the 1st of January, 1877, he took charge of the Heilman-Urie Plow 
Company and two years later bought out the Urie interests, the business 
being continued under the name of the Heilman Plow Company until the 
death of Mr. Heilman in September, 1890. The factory was a small con- 
cern when he assumed control, but he has since more than quadrupled the 
capacity of the plant, adding the manufacture of chilled plows to their steel 
products. Upon the death of Mr. Heilman, his father-in-law, in 1890, his 
interest was inherited by Mrs. Rosencranz and the works were incorporated 



418 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

under the name of the Heilman Plow Company, with Major Rosencranz 
as president. He has held the office since that date, and in 1898 changed 
the name to the Vulcan Plow Company. He is planning extensive im- 
provements in the works and recently increased the capital stock from one 
hundred and fifty thousand to four hundred thousand dollars. Improve- 
ments are planned for many years to come and will be vigorously prose- 
cuted, making the enterprise one of the most important industrial interests 
of the Ohio valley. The business has long since become recognized as one 
of the leading undertakings of this character and its rapid and substantial 
growth in recent years is attributable to the efforts and sound business 
judgment of Major Rosencranz. 

Though his extensive business interests have occupied much of his time, 
Major Rosencranz is an exceedingly public-spirited citizen and in various 
ways has contributed to the general welfare and to public progress. He 
has never sought political office, yet served as a member of the city council 
from the fifth ward and was made chairman of its finance committee, in 
which connection he materially assisted in bringing about a satisfactory 
adjustment of the city debt. He also served as chairman of the waterworks 
committee. He is a member and ex-president of the Business Men's As- 
sociation and also a member and director of the Manufacturers' Association. 
He contributed most liberally toward the erection of the building for the 
Young Men's Christian Association in 1890, served as treasurer of the 
building committee, and has since been treasurer of the board of trustees. 
In 1909 he provided a home for the colored Young Men's Christian Asso- 
ciation at the corner of Seventh and Cherry streets, which was dedicated 
to Major and Mrs. Rosencranz, and from a small community this has 
grown rapidly with great prospects of doing much good among the colored 
people. This, together with the splendid work of the colored manual train- 
ing school and the enlarged domestic science course for the colored girls, 
will make the coming generations more useful and happy. Major Rosen- 
cranz is a zealous member of Trinity Methodist Episcopal church, yet there 
is no narrow sectarian bias in his religion, and he is deeply and helpfully 
interested in various projects which are the embodiment of humanitarian- 
ism and Christianity. He belongs to Indiana Commandery of the Loyal 
Legion ; Farragut Post, No. zj, G. A. R., of which he has been commander ; 
La Vallette Commandery, No. 15, K. T. ; and takes an active interest in 
promoting the welfare of all these organizations. In the matter of politics 
he is affiliated with the republican party. 

Major and Mrs. Rosencranz have three living children, Olive, Richard 
and Gertrude, each of whom has received every advantage arising from a 
cultured home and university training. Major Rosencranz has always been 
deeply interested in the cause of education, and since 1906 has been presi- 
dent of the school board of Evansville. During that time notable advance 
has been made for the extension of industrial training and for the concen- 
tration of the seventh and eighth grades of the present high school. Suit- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 419 

able buildings have been erected and the interest aroused in the school sys- 
tem has brought about good work in modernizing the sanitary system and 
in adding to and improving the school grounds. After seven years spent 
in urging the addition of a manual training school without enlisting the 
support of the community, Major and Mrs. Rosencranz donated from their 
own funds the cost of establishing the manual training school, and today 
several hundred students are being instructed in that splendid institution. 
He is deeply interested in all the grave and important problems — political, 
sociological and economic — which are attracting the attention of the best 
thinking men of the age. During the last two years he has given especial 
attention to the problem of furnishing better homes to people of moderate 
means and building apartment houses to be rented at low rates. More of 
the same work is being planned on lines similar to that which is being 
carried out in Washington, D. C, and New York, by General Sternberg 
and others. Major Rosencranz is also making investment of considerable 
sums of money for the working girls' association. Last year he purchased 
a home for this association in a suitable location — the Setchell homestead 
on Second street. Mrs. Rosencranz is very actively connected with him in 
this work. They have recently purchased the George Lorenz homestead, 
adjoining the other, and are now planning to greatly extend the facilities 
of the association. Few men have seemed to recognize so fully the obli- 
gations and responsibilities of wealth. Beheving in the brotherhood of 
mankind. Major Rosencranz has put forth most effective effort to alleviate 
the hard conditions of life and to give to the workers of the world op- 
portunity for advancement, for usefulness and for happiness. His labors 
find their monument in many tangible results as seen in the lives of those 
who have been benefited by his efforts. 



JULIUS NIEDNAGEL. 



Julius Niednagel, a successful florist of Evansville, and a student of 
nature who has devoted his life to the cultivation of her most beautiful 
forms, is of German parentage and was bom in Kaleb, Baden, Germany. 
He was educated in the public schools, and even as a youth, was attracted 
to the study of floriculture, in which he has attained a remarkable pro- 
ficiency, very largely through his own observation and experience. While 
he was still in his boyhood he began learning the florist's business in his 
native village and in 1869, when he came to America, he had already de- 
cided to devote his life to that pursuit. He remained for a time in New 
York, engaging in different vocations, but in 1887 came to Evansville, 
where he entered the employ of J. D. Camody, on Water street, continuing 
in that connection for two years. 

Having become thoroughly acquainted with the situation and believing 
that the time had arrived to establish himself permanently, he became as- 



420 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

sociated with a Mr. Halback in the florist and greenhouse business, per- 
forming his part with such abihty that four years later he had acquired 
sufficient capital to establish a greenhouse for himself on Walnut Hill. 
Here his success was even more pronounced, and in 1901 he purchased a 
tract of seven acres at his present location. No. 927 Lincoln avenue, where 
he built greenhouses and where he now maintains one of the most ex- 
tensive plants of the kind in the city. The air of neatness and order that 
prevails throughout the entire plant and the many facilities that are at hand 
for assisting in carrying forward the business, indicate good management 
and thorough attention to every detail. 

In 1873 Mr. Niednagel was united in marriage to Miss Johanna Meta 
Meyer, and they became the parents of nine children. The three sons are 
following in the footsteps of their father and assist him in his business, 
while the daughters are living at the family home. Eight years ago, in 
1902, Mr. Niednagel met with the greatest sorrow of his life in the death 
of his faithful companion. 

In the various duties of householder, citizen and business man, Mr. 
Niednagel has always attempted to perform his part. His business in- 
terests have been of such a character as to add materially to the beauty 
of the city and to enhance the happiness of every lover of nature, increas- 
ing not only his individual fortune but adding to the permanent welfare 
of a large community. He does not belong to that class of men who re- 
quire their work to be laid out for them. He is an originator, and as a 
leader would have attained an enviable reputation in anything that en- 
gaged his attention. He belongs to a race that for hundreds of years has 
done a large part of the original thinking for the world, and in applying 
his own ideas in the course of his business, he has uniformly met with 
gratifying returns. His life has been characterized by principles that com- 
mand respect, and in all his dealings he has shown a probity that reflects 
upon him the highest credit. 



FREDERICK BOCKSTEGE. 

Evansville is fast becoming one of the centers of furniture manufac- 
turing in this country. Its business interests of this character have in- 
creased manifold in the last few years, and the men who are at the head of 
such industries may well be counted among the promoters and upbuilders 
of the city. Diligent and determined, Frederick Bockstege since entering 
business life has steadily worked his way upward, and since 1901 has oc- 
cupied the position of president of the Bockstege Furniture Company. He 
is numbered among the worthy citizens that Germany has furnished to the 
United States. His birth occurred in Prussia, April 16, 1862, his parents 
being Henry and Elizabeth Bockstege, who were also natives of the same 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 421 

locality. The father was born in 1825 and became a miller by trade. Sub- 
sequently he took charge of the washing of coal in the mines and lived the 
life of an industrious, hard working man. His death occurred in 1900. 

Frederick Bockstege was a pupil in the public schools of Germany to 
the age of fourteen years and then started out in life on his own account, 
so that whatever success he has since achieved is attributable entirely to 
his own labors, justly entitling him to the proud American title of a "self- 
made man." He served an apprenticeship of five years at the cabinet- 
maker's trade and then sought the opportunities of the new world in busi- 
ness lines. Crossing the Atlantic, he made his way to Akron, Ohio, where 
he was employed as carpenter for four months. He afterward spent four 
months as a cabinet-maker in St. Louis, and on the expiration of that 
period came to Evansville. Here he secured a position as cabinet-maker 
in the furniture manufacturing house of Joseph F. Puty, with whom he 
remained for three years, while later he was connected with the Smith & 
Holtman Planing Mill for two years. For one year he was in the employ 
of the firm of Stuhls & Karges, and at the end of that time he joined 
Mr. Karges in organizing the Karges Furniture Company, of which Mr. 
Bockstege was the president until January, 1910. In 1901 he organized the 
Bockstege Furniture Company and was elected its president, since which 
time he has remained as its chief executive officer. They employ seventy 
men in the manufacture of fine tables, and the product which they turn 
out, because of its excellence, finds a ready sale upon the market. The 
record of the business is written in terms of profit, and Mr. Bockstege is 
regarded as a valuable asset in business circles in Evansville. Other busi- 
ness interests have also profited by his keen discernment and capable di- 
rection. He is now financially interested in various corporate enterprises 
and is vice president of the Globe Furniture Company, a director of the 
Crescent Stove Works, a director of the Huser Battery Company, vice 
president of the Auto Travelers' Association, and a director of the Evans- 
ville Beveled Glass Company. 

In August, 1887, Mr. Bockstege was married in this city to Miss Mina 
Seeger, and they have become the parents of nine children : Oara, twenty- 
three years of age, at home; Fred, twenty-two years of age, who is sec- 
retary of the Bockstege Furniture Company and manager of the exhibit in 
the furniture building; Herman, twenty years of age, who is with the 
Adams Express Company; Henry, eighteen years of age, who is with his 
father in the office; John, sixteen years of age, who is learning the trade 
of furniture manufacturing; Ida, Anna and Benjamin, aged respectively 
thirteen, eleven and seven years, all pupils in the public schools ; and Mary, 
four years of age. 

While the stress of circumstances forced Frederick Bockstege to be- 
come a factor in life's activities when but fourteen years of age, no mere 
environment or condition was strong enough to keep him in the back- 



422 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ground. Through the inherent force of character and his marked ability- 
he gradually advanced in business circles until his position as one of the 
leading manufacturers and business men of Evansville is established by 
his own worth and by the consensus of public opinion. 



U. H. SEILER. 



U. H. Seller, secretary-treasurer of the West Side Insurance & Real 
Estate Company, now operating extensively and successfully in those lines 
indicated by the title of the firm, was born in Bradford, Harrison county, 
Indiana, in 1868, and there attended the district schools. In 1889 he came 
to Vanderburg county and for eleven years thereafter was identified with 
educational interests as a teacher in the schools of Perry township, this 
county, his work being satisfactory and resultant from the fact that he con- 
sidered it purely from the standpoint of the individual. Moreover, he im- 
parted readily and clearly to others the knowledge that he had acquired. 

Feeling that the teacher's profession offered too limited opportunities 
for success, he turned his attention to the real-estate business and became 
one of the organizers of the West Side Insurance & Real Estate Company, 
which was formed in 1908, its present officers being: Henry Dreier, presi- 
dent; G. W. Vamer, M. D., vice president; U. H. Seller, secretary-treas- 
urer; and E. L. Craig, counsel. The company, incorporated under the state 
laws of Indiana, has a capital stock of one hundred thousand dollars and 
Mr. Seller has since acted as general manager. They conduct a general 
real-estate and insurance business and, although operating in all parts of 
the city, make a specialty of west side property. They are now developing 
three new additions. Poplar Grove, Grandview and Varnerton, which they 
are making very attractive, equipped with all modem improvements. The 
insurance business is also an important department, for they handle every 
kind of insurance and represent many of the most substantial companies. 
They also buy and sell property for others as well as develop their own, 
and their business is now reaching large and satisfactory proportions. Mr. 
Seller is also secretary-treasurer and general manager of the West Side 
Building, Loan & Savings Association, with which he has been connected 
for several years. This company has made it possible for many working 
people to own their own homes. He was likewise one of the organizers of 
the West Side Business Association and was one of a committee of three, 
his associates being E. L. Craig and George Koch, appointed to report on 
the advisability of organizing the association. They reported favorably 
and Mr. Seller, George Koch and E. L. Craig were then named as a com- 
mittee to provide by-laws, resolutions, etc. This association has done ex- 
cellent work, especially in securing factories and other business enterprises 
for the west side, contributing much to the development and upbuilding of 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 423 

that section. Mr. Seller optioned and reoptioned over a quarter of a mil- 
lion dollars' worth of land adjoining the city in connection with the indus- 
trial move which has done so much for the city in bringing new industries, 
etc., having sold more than one-eighth of the lots himself. 

In 1896, in Harrison county, Indiana, Mr. Seller was married to Miss 
Mary Stemm, of Bradford, Indiana, and they have two children: Orwic 
E., twelve years of age, now a pupil of the high' school; and Cecil Lawton, 
ten years of age, also attending public school. 

Mr. Seller belongs to Orion Lodge, No. 35, of the uniformed rank of 
the Knights of Pythias and has filled all of the chairs in the local organiza- 
tion. He is likewise a charter member of Waukee Tribe, I. O. R. M., and 
also belongs to West Side Council, No. 1143, National Union. He is identi- 
fied with many other institutions, including the west side branch of the 
Young Men's Christian Association. He is a typical business man of the 
present day, alert and enterprising, seeking out new opportunities for the 
enlargement of his business and at the same time recognizing the obliga- 
tions of citizenship. 



FRANK R. AUSTIN. 



Frank R. Austin, auditor of the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad and 
associated lines, was born in Evansville, Indiana, February 3, 1868. There- 
fore Evansville numbers him among her native sons. His parents were 
Thomas and Sarah Austin. The father was bom in Northamptonshire, 
England, on the 30th of December, 1832, and remained a resident of his 
native land through the period of his boyhood and youth, coming as a 
young man of twenty-five years to Evansville. Arriving in this city in 
1857, he turned his attention to the nursery business, in which he engaged 
imtil 1861, when he took up draying. That business claimed his attention 
until 1880, when he removed to a farm in the vicinity of Evansville and 
gave his attention continuously to general agricultural pursuits until 1902. 
The care and diligence which he displayed in the cultivation of his fields 
brought him a measure of success that has enabled him to live retired 
through the past eight years, which period he has spent in Evansville, 
where he now makes his home. The mother was also born in England, 
on the 2d of April, 1840, and came to Evansville with her parents when 
five years old. 

Reared under the parental roof, Frank R. Austin was a pupil in the 
public and high schools of Evansville to the age of seventeen years. He 
afterward spent two years in assisting his father upon the home farm and 
then, in preparation for the practical duties of a commercial career, en- 
tered the Curnlck & Rank Business College, in which he pursued his studies 
for a year. On the completion of that course he engaged with the Evans- 



424 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

ville & Terre Haute Railroad Company, accepting the position of clerk in 
the ticket department. The fidelity and capability which he displayed won 
him promotion through the various positions in the accounting department 
until in March, 1906, he was named as the successor of W. K. Allen, who 
was auditor for the Evansville & Terre Haute, the Evansville & Indian- 
apolis, and the Evansville Belt Railway Companies. Having thor- 
oughly mastered the duties which had previously devolved upon him, he 
was well qualified to assume the new position and his service in this con- 
nection has given entire satisfaction to the companies which he thus rep- 
resents. 

In July, 1891, Mr. Austin was married to Miss Addie M. Snyder, of 
Evansville, and unto them have been born two children, Frank Marvin and 
Eunice Mildred. The son, now seventeen years of age, is a pupil in the 
high school, while the daughter, a maiden of thirteen, is a pupil in the 
graded school. Mr. and Mrs. Austin hold membership in the Presbyterian 
church and he is further identified with the National Union, a fraternal 
organization. His political support is given to the republican party. 
Throughout his entire life he has been a resident of Vanderburg county, 
and the fact that many of his warmest friends are those who have known 
him from his youth to the present time is an indication that his record has 
always been a creditable one. 



LENERD HIRSCH. 



Of all the occupations known to man that of the farmer is to be pre- 
ferred. Especially is this the case in regions of the United States where 
soil and climate are favorable and markets are convenient. Under such 
conditions a man may lead a life of independence which he can find in no 
other occupation. There was a time not far in the past when unfavorable 
weather often had a disastrous effect on farming operations but at the 
present time the skilled farmer plants a variety of crops and also raises live 
stock, so that although he may be a loser in one direction he gains in an- 
other and at the close of the year he generally finds that the gains are 
greater than the losses. Such a farmer is Lenerd Hirsch, owner of one 
of the best improved farms in Knight township, Vanderburg county. Here 
he has lived all his life and, having early been thoroughly trained to every- 
thing pertaining to the farm, he started right and thus avoided the costly 
blunders that are often so discouraging to a beginner. 

Mr. Hirsch was bom in Knight township in 1856. He is a son of 
Jacob and Mary Eva (Goelz) Hirsch. The father was born in Rhinebarn, 
Germany, and after growing up came to America, as many other enter- 
prising young men of the fatherland have done, in order that he might 
take advantage of the wonderful opportunities presented by the great re- 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 425 

public. Here he became a successful farmer and many of his dreams were 
realized, showing that he made no mistake when he sought a fortune among 
strangers. Eight children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Hirsch : John, Jacob 
P., Lenerd, Mary, Katherine, Anna, EHzabeth and Helena. 

After pursuing the usual studies in the district schools, during which he 
gained a reputation as one of the bright boys of the neighborhood, Lenerd 
Hirscli turned his attention to the farm and under his father's direction 
became fully acquainted with the details of its operation and management. 
The father was a man of great industry and he taught his sons to work 
and direct their efforts so as to produce good crops. They also learned 
how to raise and care for horses, cattle, hogs and the smaller farm animals 
so as to receive the highest market prices. This education is of the great- 
est practical value to boys expecting to devote their attention to the farm, 
and Lenerd Hirsch became one of the most expert farmers in the neigh- 
borhood. He was united in marriage to Miss Tressa Zehner, whose father 
was a farmer of Warrick county. Eleven children have blessed this union 
— seven sons and four daughters, all of whom make themselves useful 
either in the household or on the farm. 

Mr. Hirsch is affiliated with the democratic party and believes that 
his party represents better than any other the principles on which this 
government was founded. He votes the democratic ticket in state and 
national elections, but in local affairs he is not so particular as to party 
as he is in regard to the character of the individual. He is a member of 
the Independent Order of Foresters and since his childhood has been con- 
nected with the Catholic church, whose doctrines of brotherhood he heartily 
endorses. As the head of a large family, Mr. Hirsch has responsibilities 
which the ordinary man knows little about, but it is the principle of his 
life to perform each duty as it appears and not to worry over troubles 
which may never come. He is happy in his hom.e, in his associations and 
in the work to which as a boy he decided to devote his life and in which, 
by the exercise of good judgment, he has attained marked success. 



NICHOLAS ELLES. 



The success and prominence of Nicholas Elles in the business world is 
indicated by the fact that he was honored by election to the presidency of 
the State Millers' Association. He continued for more than a quarter of a 
century in active connection with the milling business and built up an enter- 
prise which was not only a source of individual profit but was also an ele- 
ment in the city's commercial growth and development. He regarded busi- 
ness, however, as but one phase of existence nor allowed it to interfere with 
his obligations of citizenship or the faithful discharge* of his duty to his 
fellowmen. He was a representative of one of the old families of Vander- 



426 HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 

burg county and was of German lineage. His father, August Elles, was 
born in Wachenheim, Germany, in 1814, and was a young man of twenty- 
six years when in 1840 he emigrated to the United States. Making his way 
at once to Indiana, he settled in Armstrong township, this county, and be- 
came identified with the business interests of Evansville. He had learned 
the butcher's trade in his native land but taking up his abode here in 1845 
he embarked in the retail grocery business, in which he continued with 
growing success until 1862. In the latter year he began the operation of 
a mill and met with prosperity in that undertaking, to which he devoted his 
energies untiringly until his life's labors were ended in death in 1871. The 
Canal Mills, by which name his enterprise was known, soon became a well 
known industry and their proprietor, because of his activity and reliability 
in business, is remembered as a useful and valued citizen. His wife, who 
bore the maiden name of Marguerite Schmitt, was bom in Germany in 
1820. 

Nicholas Elles, the third child in his father's family, was a native of 
Armstrong towliship, born on the 28th of March, 1844. His education was 
acquired in the schools of Evansville, his mastery of various branches of 
learning winning him promotion through successive grades until his mental 
training well equipped him for entrance into the business world. He was 
first employed in his father's grocery store and from that time forward was 
connected with his father in business. Following the sale of the grocery 
store in 1862 he became identified with mill enterprises and in the course 
years was recognized as one of the leading millers of the state of In- 
diana. Inflexible integrity and straightforward dealing characterized all of 
his business transactions and his progressive spirit kept him abreast with 
the times in all that pertained to advancement along milling lines. He was 
for years a prominent member of the Indiana Millers' Association, and in 
1881 was elected to the presidency of that organization. The state organ- 
ization elected him to the national association at Buffalo, New York, in 
1889. While he conducted an enterprise of considerable importance and 
gained more than local fame in connection with his business interests, he 
yet found time and opportunity for cooperation in affairs of general mo- 
ment and did effective work along the lines of public progress. He was 
also deeply interested in the work of the Business Men's Association, doing 
all in his power to promote the trade conditions of the city that its pros- 
perity might be augmented. 

In 1867 Mr. Elles was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Krau, who 
was bom in Evansville in 1848. Her father, Frederick Krau, was a na- 
tive of Germany, and when a young man crossed the Atlantic to the new 
world, and for years engaged in the grocery business at Evansville, at the 
comer of Second and Main streets. He became a well known merchant 
of the city, prominently identified with the commercial activity here. He 
married Miss Elizabeth Decker, w!ho had come to Evansville when nine 
years of age. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Elles were born three children, Louis 



HISTORY OF VANDERBURG COUNTY 427 

F., Adelia V. and William M. Mr. Elles was ever devoted to the welfare 
and happiness of his family, and counted it his greatest pleasure to min- 
ister to the interests of his wife and children. 

In 1865 Mr. Elles became a Mason, and in 1866 attained the Knight 
Templar degree in the commandery. He held membership in the Presby- 
terian church, guided his life by its principles and passed away in that 
faith on the 2d of November, 1888. The entire period of his life had been 
passed in Vanderburg county, and during the greater part of the time he 
had been a resident of Evansville, so that his interests were closely allied 
writh the city. His influence was at all times on the side of progress, im- 
provement, justice and truth. His course was never an equivocal one, and 
he ever stood fearlessly in defense of his honest convictions. Measured by 
the standards of honorable, upright manhood, he well deserved the high 
regard in which he was uniformly held. 



INDEX 



.131 



Adier, J. N 

Adler, T. A 

Andres, K. A. 

Ai-tes, C. F 

Austin, F. R 

Baldwin, H. D 

Banking in Evansvllle 

Battin, C. H 

Bauer, J. H. M 

Bauer, Michael 336 

Begley, Baxter 253 

Beidelman, T. N 140 

Bell, Crawford 340 

Bell, S. B 349 

Bement, G. W 16 

Bernstein, D. S 60 

Blum, J. F 93 

Bockstege, Frederick 420 

Bcebne, J. W 38 

Boetticher, Edward 308 

Boetticher, W. H 358 

Eosse, Benjamin 170 

Bower, William 293 

Brandis, J. H 29 

Brandon, M. C 65 

Bray, M. J 8 

Brennan, R. A 322 

Brose, George 192 

Browning, W. A 236 

Brownlee, John 190 

Caden, F. R 324 

Carpenter, Willard 122 

Carson, W. A 202 

Cawson, James 152 

Clarke, William 398 

Condit, G. A 407 

Conn, F. P 404 

Cook, F. W 66 

Cook, H. L 359 



Cooper, W. V 413 

Covert, C. G 383 

Cox, D. A 101 

Crawford, Alexander 268 

Curry, C. T 217 

D;miels, W. D 28 

Daus, L. A 380 

Daussmau, G. M., Jr 138 

Daussman, G. M 373 

Davidson, William 33 

Davis, F. L 356 

Dedrick, W. H 239 

Diekmann, C. F 130 

Dixon, W. V 144 

Doerschler, Albert 79 

Downs, W. G 323 

Dreier, H. E 182 

Dunavan, H. R 355 

Durbin, F. M 7 

Eissler, Louis 86 

Eissler, William 409 

Files, Nicholas 425 

Elliott, W. J 271 

Ei-hardt, Henry 146 

Euler. Charles 58 

Euler, Philip 145 

Evans, S. G 350 

Pairehild, D. M 135 

Ferguson, J. R 42 

Ferguson, W. 26 

Flnke, O. E 262 

Finke, L. B 249 

Fleener, W. S 117 

Ford, A. S 264 

Ford, L. S 132 

Foster, G. C 201 

Frisse, C. M 187 

Frltsch, Louis 214 

Fuchs, F. P 369 



429 



Funke, Ferdinand 242 

Funke, J. M 250 

Gai-vln, T. E 377 

Gillett, B. F 231 

Giluiau, J. F 4u6 

GJelcUniiUi, J. W 330 

Gi-tKlwin, J. R 136 

Gould. P. 3S6 

Groeninger, J. J 206 

Grote, Ferdinand 80 

Haas, F. J 74 

Haas, Isaiali 204 

Haas, Joseph 269 

Haase. Conrad 284 

Hannett, E. H 223 

Harman. F. M 165 

Harms, George 87 

Hart, E. L 191 

Harwood. R. L 162 

Hayward, N. B 410 

Heimaim, David 232 

Ileldt, C. D 301 

Henii. J. B 114 

Heuuing, Edwin C 30 

Hill, E. N 363 

Hirseli, John 354 

Hirseh, Leuerd 424 

Hodgkius, H. E 220 

Hoefling, G. A 234 

Hottlierr, W. T 348 

Holt-Brandon Ice & Cold Storage Co.. 258 

Hooker, William 290 

Hornby. O. J 176 

Hnmmel, Joseph 157 

Iglehart, J. E 181 

Intermediate Life Assurance Co 355 

Jacobi, O. F 20 

Jenner, J. W 390 

Jett, O. E lis 

Johann, Albert 347 

.lohann, C. H 343 

Karaman, H. W 247 

Kamp, J. W 248 

Kanzler, Christ 211 

Kanzler, Gus 403 

Kai-ges. A. C 320 

Karges, A. F 110 

Karsch, Jacob ; 292 

Kautz, Fred 344 

Keil. Nicholas. Jr 27 

Keller-Crescent Company 153 

Kevekordes. Leo 121 

King, J. L 198 

Klaviss. O. L 34 



Klein, A. J 167 

Klusman, W. H 161 

Kuowles, J. W 51 

Korff, Henry, Sr 154 

Kranss, G. L 267 

Krieger. F. W 367 

Kuehue, F. H 313 

Kuhu, H. W 160 

Kuhu, J. F 48 

Lauenstein, F. W 272 

Laueustein, Frledrich 126 

Laughlin, C. E 35 

Laughlin, F. R, 77 

Langhlin, John M 184 

Laval, John 115 

Legler, L. H .277 

Lc Masters, W. B 400 

Lemcke, Alexander 285 

Levi, S. V 166 

Lindenschmidt, J. B 189 

Liudley, H. M 70 

Little. S. W 334 

Long, C. W 188 

JXcCurdy, W. H 104 

McDonald, J. S 279 

McNeely, J. H 394 

^(ahrenholz, Edward 261 

Maier, Peter 374 

Manu. E. H 280 

Marx, Joseph 129 

Mattison, H. A 195 

Meadows. Harvey L 203 

ileyer. A. H 316 

Meyer. E. C 139 

Miller, F. W 241 

Miller, G. L 100 

Miller, J. H 37 

Moll. Andrew 19 

Moll, John 50 

Mnndy, T. D 333 

Xieduagel. Julius 419 

. Xonweiler, G. A 255 

Nugent, John 294 

ODonnell, John 57 

Old State National Bank 226 

Orr, Samuel 5 

Peckinpaugh. H. J.. 28;^ 

Pfaffin. Eugene 368 

Poole. E. C : ... .302 

Potts. J. G 397 

Ragon Brothers 415 

Reddinger, P. H 245 

Reis. Anthony 25 

Reis. Henry 52 



INDEX 



431 



Reister, William 44 

Reitz, J. A 12 

Reitz, J. F 379 

Rickwood, S. G 213 

Riechmann, H. F 319 

Rietman, B. H 357 

Roberts. O. H 370 

Rollet, Joseph 15 

Rollet, T. J 43 

Rosecrans, A. J 399 

Rosencranz, A. C 416 

Rusche, H. J 108 

Ruston, R. S 393 

Saunders, J. D 385 

Saunders, J. F 312 

Schelosky, M. H 210 

Schenk, J. F 306 

Sehenk, J. A., Sr 321 

Schenk, Valentine 116 

Schlaepfer, A. J 180 

Schmidt, C. F 158 

Schmidt, William 276 

Schmitt, V. J 78 

Schoenbacher, CJharles 408 

Scholz, F. J 286 

Schor, E. A 235 

Sdior, R. F 299 

Schreeder, C. O. 148 

Schu, H. H 168 

Schultz, T. T 307 

Schultze, Carl 218 

Seller, U. H 422 



Shafer, A. J 263 

Shafer, J. F 339 

Siebeking, W. E 315 

Sirkle, A. J 275 

Smith, E. R 366 

Smith, Moses 63 

Smyth, T. B 59 

Sode, A. B 338 

Sonntag, M. S 96 

Staser, J. C 270 

Steinmetz, Henry 94 

Stork, J. W 345 

Storton, William 147 

Sweetser, H. M 174 

S^TOpe, A. E 414 

Tenbarge, Anton 298 

Tweedall, D. G 300 

^'ame^•, G. W 88 

Veneman, A. J 209 

Walker, Edwin 327 

Weber, H. C 230 

Weber, J. H 405 

Welborn, J. Y 82 

White. E. S 360 

Williams, M. L 92 

Williams, R. R 22 

Williams, W. S ' 47 

Wiltshire, J. W 219 

Wimberg, H. A 49 

Wimberg. Henry 179 

Winternheimer, L. W 229 

Young, Paul 376 




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