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Quincy and Adams County history and representative men (Volume 1) online

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wife having preceded him in death in 1888. William Schwebcl, the
eldest .son, learned the machinist's trade. During the Civil war he



342 QUINCY AND ADAMS COUNTY

served in the Union army, as second lieutenant of Company F, Forty-
third Illinois Infantry; after the war he went West and opened a
machine shop in San Francisco, California. Edward Schwebel, the
second son, served in the One Hundred and Thirty-seventh Illinois
Infantry ; he also was a machinist, and later moved to Burlington,
Iowa, where he followed his trade. Henry George Schwebel, the third
son, still resides in Quincy, where he has a position as shipping clerk
in the Thomas White Stove Foundry.

George Liebig was born 1770 in Gross-Biberau, Grandduehy of
Hessen. He was a shoemaker by occupation, and an uncle of Prof.
Justus Liel)ig. the German chemist. He married Elizabeth Breit-
wieser, born 1779 in Kleestadt, Grandduehy of Ilessen. In 1838 the
couple came to Quincy, where Liebig died in the same year, while his
wife lived until 1869. Two sons came to this country with their
parents, ]>oth l)eing shoemakers. George P. Liebig located in St.
Louis, and John Leonard Liebig, in Belleville, Illinois, where he mar-
ried Elizabeth Schubkegel, and conducted his business until 1849,
when he became a victim of cholera. John P. Liebig, a son of John
Leonard and Elizabeth (Schubkegel) Liebig, was born in Belleville,
Februarj' 2, 1848, and came to Quincy in 1866, where he is estab-
lished as a dealer in coal, wood, and ice. He married Hannah Heit-
land, and they have three sons and three daughters. George and Eliza-
beth (Breitwieser) Liebig, who came to Quincy in 1838, also had
three daughters : Elizabeth Barbara, wife of Jean Philip Bert ; Mar-
garet, wife of Simon Glass; and Elizabeth JIaria, wife of John Wenzel,
all of them residing in this county, where they died many years ago.

Henry Bornmann, born in 1800 in Hatzfeld, circuit of Giessen,
Grandduehy of Hessen, was a paper miller, and married Elizabeth
Kuhn, born in the circuit of Wittgenstein. In 1834 they came to
America, and located in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania. lu 1838 the fam-
ily came to Quincy. There being no paper mill here, Henry Boi'n-
mann conducted a lime kiln. His wife died in 1849 of cholera and
he became a victim of the same plague in 1851. The eldest son, Henry,
born in Germany, was a watchmaker and died of the yellow fever in
New Orleans in 1852. Theodore Bornmann, the second son, born
September 24, 1843, in Quincy, grew up in this city, where he for
many years was engaged as a painter and paper hanger. In November,
1864, he married Mary Waldhaus, daughter of George F. and Marie
(Gasser) Waldhaus. She died twenty-six _years ago, and a year later
Theodore Bornmann married Mrs. Katherine Eisenstein, widow of
Louis Eisenstein. Sons of Theodore and Mary (Waldhaus) Bornmann
living are: George, Albert, William, Frank, and Frederick; besides
one daughter, Cora, wife of Frank Reed, in Ellendale, North Dakota.
Two grandsons of Theodore Bornmann, Elmer and August, sons of
George Bornmann, are serving in the army of the United States.



i^riXCV AND ADAMS COUNTY 343

Gi'orge Jacob Waldhaus. Ixnii 1797 in Oberau, Graudduchy of
Hcsseii, married Kathcrinc Vondersehmitt, born in the same town,
Defcmber 31, 1792. In 1837 the family emigrated, landing in New-
Orleans New Year's night 1838. In July of the same year tiie family
located in Quincy, where Mrs. Waldhaus died June 6, 1863, her hus-
band departing this life July 26, 1869. George Frederick Waldhaus,
sou of George Jacob and Katlierine (Vondersciimitt) Waldiiaus, born
Jlay 23, 1819, in Kleiu-Biberau, came to Quiney with his parents. lie
learned the cooper's trade, and for nmuy years conducted a sliop in
tiiis city. In 1840 he nuirricil .Marie Gasser, born March 1, 1824, in
Baden. George Frederick Waldhaus sen'ed iu the Mormon war of
1S44 as a member of the German Guards. For many years lie was
prominent in public life, holding many offices of honor and trust. Iu
1854-55 he was city marshal ; in 1856-57 city treasurer ; in the spriug
of 1865 he was elected mayor of the city; from 1874 until 1879 he
rei)rescntcd the Third Ward iu the board of supervisors. In 1890
George Frederick and Marie Waldhaus celebrated their golden wed-
ding, attended liy a great number of relatives and personal friends.
Jlrs. Waldhaus died September 21, 1892; her husband, February 3,
1899. Three sons survive : Henrj- W. Waldhaus, born September 13,
1842. who at the age of fifteen drove a mail wagon, receiving twcnty-
tive dollars a month. Later he learned the cooper's trade. In 1866
he was elected as street commissioner. For thirty years he was assistant
a.s.sessor of the Town of Quincy. His wife, Caroline, nee Wober, died
many years ago. Fred Waldhaus, the second son, a machinist by
trade, is at present engineer in the house of correction. Edw-ard, the
third son, is a paper hanger by trade and located in the eastern part
of this county.

George Philip Rcilstein, Iiorn June 29. 1805, in Lichtenbcrg, Grand-
duchy of Ilessen, was a baker. In March, ISlJT, he emigrated to
America and located in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. There he met and
married Anna Elizabeth Klingler, born 1805 in Reichelsheim, Grand-
duchy of Ilcssen. In 1838 the family came to Quincy, where George
Philip Beilstein went to work in the Star Mills as fireman and then
as engineer. Two years later he went to farming near Mill Creek. His
wife died in 1867, while he departed this life in 1888. Two sous,
Philip and George, grew up on the farm and followed agriculture.
Philip died in 1902, George in 1918. Philip Beilstein related the
following interesting reminiscences alrout country life in the early
days: "Within a stretch of three miles there were nine mills on Mill
Creek, serving as saw mills and grist mills, and run by water power.
Corn and wheat were simply ground without separating the bran
from the flour, and the meal thus secured was tasteful and wholesome.
Occasionally it would happen that the mills were put out of com-
mission, owing to the lack of water, and then we had to resort to our
coffee mill to grind the grain. Some of the dwellings were built of
logs and others by using slabs or clapboards. Wooden pegs were



344 QUINCY AND ADAMS COUNTY

used iu connecting the frame work. ^Matches were a coinraodity not
known in those days, and fires had to be started by the aid of flint
and steel, in connection with punk. This being very tedious, people
were careful to keep the fire on the hearth alive ; when retiring for
the night, ashes were heaped on the glimmering coal, to be removed
in the morning, when wood placed on the live coal would soon result
in a blazing tire. But it sometimes happened that the fire was out in
the morning, and then some member of the family had to start out
with an iron kettle to "borrow fire" from the next neighbor, which,
of course, was not pleasant when the temperature was way below
zero." Besides the two sons mentioned above, George Philip and
Anna Elizabeth (Klingler) Beilstein had three daughters: Marie, the
wife of C. F. A. Behrensmeyer, building contractor and later proprie-
tor of a general store. Elizabeth, wife of Peter Scheer, Slater, Mis-
souri; and Pauline, wife of William Wenzel, farmer on the Payson
prairie in this county. All of them have departed this life years ago ;
many descendants are among the living.

John Breitwieser, born July 9, 1816, in Kleestadt, Grandduchy
of Hessen, learned the shoemaker's trade with George Liebig in Gross-
Biberau. The latter part of 1837 he emigrated and came to America,
landing in Baltimore. Later he came West, arriving in Quincy May 17,
1838, where he settled for life. In the same year the first German
Protestant church, St. John's Church, was built in this city and John
Breitwieser assisted in the construction of the building, which was
erected on the east side of South Seventh Street, between York and
Kentucky, on the site where at present St. John's Lutheran Church
stands. In 1842 John Breitwieser, with William Dickhut and Robert
Benneson, went overland to Wisconsin in a wagon drawn by four
horses. Prairie chickens were so numerous that they could kill them
with clubs. They traveled 600 miles before they reached the first
sawmill, conducted by Frank Biron, a Frenchman, six miles north
of Grand Rapids on the Wisconsin River. After trading their horses
and wagon for 30,000 feet of lumber, and constructing a raft, they
started down stream, bound for Quincy, an Indian serving as pilot.
En route the voyagers lost their course, getting into a "blind alley."
The water rushing over the raft, the three men had to stand in the
water up to their hips for two days, when a steamboat came along,
noticed their distress, and rescued them by dragging the raft into the
regular channel, they then continuing their trip to Quincy. John
Breitwieser served in the Mormon war as a member of the Quincy
German Guards. For many years he was in the employ of Dickhut &
Benneson. the lumber dealers, also as teamster n* the Eagle Mills.
John Breitwieser was twice married : his first wife was Jlarie Huenecke,
born near Bremen, Germany ; his second wife, Amalie Reinecker, from
Muehlhausen, Thuringia. September 15, 1901, he died a widower aged
over eighty-five years. Children living are : Charles William Breit-
wieser, Mrs. Mary Buerkin, and Jliss Emilie Breitwieser, all in Quincy.



QUIXCY AND ADAMS COUNTY 345

("harlt's William Hreitwieser, the son, horn March 5. Ib6'2. k-ft school
when thirteen years of age to learn the eigarmaker's trade, but a
year later accepti-d a position in a retail store. Remaining sixteen
years he secured a comprehensive knowieilge in every department and
in 1892 bought the grocery business from William Evers, which he
continued for twelve years. In 1904 he sold out and for a number of
years has been manager of the Gem City Transfer Company. In
1882 he married Clara Rothgeb, a daughter of the old German pioneer
Henry Rothgeb.

Frederick Wellmann. boi'n Api-il !t. IS]."), in Anknni. Hanover,
was a painter, emigrated in the fall of 1835, and landed in Haltimorc
in the s{)ring of 1836, the trip having rc<iuired ninety days on the
Danish sailing vessel Caledonia. The passengers had to subsist on
black hard tack, potatoes being an unknown luxury. Four passengers
died of smallpox. From Baltimore, Frederick Wellmann came to
St. Louis, where he married Elizabeth Bueter, of Ilerzberg, Hanover.
In 1838 they came to Quincy, where the wife died in 1852. Later he
married Antoinette Bockhoff, born in Prussia. In 1838 there were
only two brick houses in Quiney ; all other dwellings were built of logs
or frame. Frederick Wellmaini was a member of the Quiney Jaeger,
a German militia company. For two years, 1853 and 1854, he repre-
sented the Second Ward in the city council. In conversation with the
writer of this narrative, fifteen years ago. Mr. W^ellmann related the
following interesting reminiscence, showing the condition of one of the
main streets seventy and more years ago: "I had attended a meeting
of the city council as one of the spectators, and it was late when I
wended my way homeward. While passing along Hampshire, between
Ninth and Tenth streets, at that time an idyllic part of the city,
known under the name. 'Bremer Hafen' (Harbor of Bremen), char-
acteristic of the great pools of water which gathered there after heavy
rains, I noticed a human being in the middle of the 'lagoon.' wrestling
for his life. Immediately arousing William Schreiber, who lived in
the block, we both went to work and rescued the man, who probably
would have drowned, had it not Ijeen for our timely arrival. The man
was Michael ^last. the first German settler in Quincy and a promi-
nent figure in the history of this community for many years." Wil-
liam Wellmann, born in Ankum, Hanover, in 1811, married Sophia
Dombree of the same town. They emigrated in 1837 and located in
Quincy in 1838. Wellmann was a locksmith, but found little to do
in his line of business, most jicople not finding locks neces.sary, fasten-
ing their doors with latches, and pulling the latchstring in when they
retired for the night; consequently he went to farming near Mill
Creek. He also served in the Mormon war as a nuMuber of the (Jer-
man Guards. Finally returning to town, he died in 1891 ; his wife
in 1895. Sons were: Frank, farmer near Mill Creek; William, har-
nessmakcr in White Sulplnir Springs. Jlontana; Frederick, farmer in
Oklahoma ; and John B. Wellmann, for many years painter in Quincy.



346 QUINCY AND ADAMS COUNTY

Daughters were : Sophia, wife of the farmer Frank Klingle ; Katherine,
wife of the machinist John Gredell; Theresia, wife of the butcher
Frank Kerkmann ; and "Wilhelmina, wife of the farmer Joseph Asche-
mann near Mill Creek. Frank Wellmann, a brother of the above men-
tioned William Wellmann, was one of the first painters in this city and
followed his trade until 1849, when he, his wife, and their children
became victims of cholera. Only one son, Frank B. Wellmann, sur-
vived, and for many j^ears was engaged as painter and paperhanger
in this city.

Among the early German pioneers was John Paul Epple, born
June 29, 1803, in Herboldsheim, Baden. He was induced to come
to Quincy because they needed a blacksmith, relatives and friends
having repeatedly requested him to make this city his home. In
1837 he with his wife, Anna Marie, nee Raes, and one son, Alexander,
came to New York and fi-om there to Buffalo, where the sou became
seriously ill and died. The trip overland was tedious, they traveling
in a wagon drawn by oxen, until they arrived in Chicago, where they
acquired a team of horses and made better progress, arriving in
Quincy in the spring of 1838. John Paul Epple bought a lot near the
city spring, where he with his own hands built a small log cabin and
a smithshop, the dwelling covering an area of sixteen feet square, while
the smithshop measured fourteen feet square. Six months later, in
a dreary winter night, the shop burned down, but was rebuilt, larger
and better, in the following spring. Being successful in his business,
John Paul Epple later bought a lot on Hampshire, between Third and
Fourth streets, where he erected a larger and more commodious work-
shop. There was another smith and wagonmaker in Quincy, Timothy
Rogers, who aceasionally went east with John Paul Epple, where they
bought carriages in New York, and hickory wood in Indiana. The
first carriage manufactured in Quincy, made complete in all its parts,
was built by John Paul Epple for 0. H. Browning, one of our pi-omi-
nent attorneys, later senator of Illinois and member of President Lin-
coln's cabinet. John Paul Epple was the first market master of
Quincy, an oflSce which he held from 1844 to 1852, and it was due to
his efforts that the first market house was built at Third and Hamp-
shire streets, where the city hall now stands. The necessity of a hall
for entertainments being apparent, John Paul Epple had a two-story
brick building erected on Hampshire, between Third and Fourth
streets, covering an area of 60 by 125 feet, known as Epple 's Hall.
Many shows, both English and German, were given there, besides
family reunions, etc. About 1870 John Paul Epple retired from active
business and moved to Twenty-fifth Street, between ilaine and
Broadway, his death occurring October 14, 1877, his wife following
him in death April 18, 1881. Besides the son Alexander, who died in
Buffalo, the children were: Caroline, wife of J. H. Brockschmidt ;
Catherine, wife of Amandus Fendrich ; Marie, wife of Michael Arnold ;
Elizabeth, wife of Caspar Arnold ; and John H. Epple.



QUINCY AND ADAMS COIXTV 347

Settlers of 1839

Louis Lambur, born 1816 in Hrueeivcnwakl, Alsace, came to Amer-
ica in 1833, learned the cooper's trade in Evansville, Indiana, and
came to Quincy in 1839. In 1841 he married Barbara Combaise,
born 1822 in Oberkandeln, near Strassburg, Alsace. For many years
he conducted a cooper shop in Quincy until his death in 1887. Louis
Lambur, Jr., a son born in Quincy, learned the-cooper's trade. Early
in 1865 he enlisted in the One Hundred and Forty-eighth Illinois
Infantry, serving to the end of the war. Later he for a number of
years served as constable. In 1864 he married Catherine Gutapfel,
daughter of the pioneei- smith George Gutapfel ; descendants in Quiney
now write the name Goodapple. Louis Lam])ur died in 1917, the
widow resides in the Illinois Soldiers' Home.

Xavier Flaiz, born 1819 in Gruol, Sigmaringen, was a shoemaker.
In the fall of 1839 he came to (^iucy, and in 1841 married .Maria
Gesina Bernzen, born in Lotten, Hanover, in 1820. Xavier Flaiz
was an expert at his trade, being known for his splendid workmanship
in tine ladies' shoes. Ho also liid (juite a business in I'eal estate. May
20, 1894, he died, while his wife lived until February 12, IftOG. Two
sons are among the living. Frederick and Eugene Flaiz, both in the
grocery business. One daughter also survives, ]\Irs. Wiliielmina
Weltin, widow of ilichael Weltin, the miller, for many years manager
of the Farmers Mill in Quincy.

Adam Stuckert and wife, Eva Marie, nee Stork, of Rheinheim,
Grandduchy of Ilessen, emigrated in 1838 and located in New Orleans,
where Stuckert died in 1839 of the yellow fever. In November of
the same year the widow with her daughter Marie Margaret, born in
New Orleans January 25, 1839, came to Quiney, and later lu-eame the
wife of Ludwig Rapp, a widower. I^ater they located near Mill f'reek,
where they went to farming. Mr. Kapj) dii-d in 1862, and her husband
in 1868. ilarle Margaret Stuckert, the daughter bom in New Orleans,
became the wife of John Henry IMichelniann, the boiler maker, Decem-
ber 17, 1857, and tliev celebrated the si.xtieth anniversary of their
wedding Decemliir 17. 1917.

Pantaleon Sohm, born July 'M\ ISll, in Sehelingen, Baden, came
to America by way of New Orleans in 1838, locating in Cincinnati,
Ohio. In 1839 he came to Quiney, locating here for life. Being a
cooper, he worked for John Ablie, who in 1848 was mayor of Quincy.
Later he opened a shop of his own at Third and York streets, often
employing from forty to fifty men. barrels being in great demand,
owing to the mills, distilleries, and packing houses conducted in
Quincy in those daj's. Sohm's cooper shop was also used for
religious meetings. Rev. Philip J. Reyland conducting services there,
and the Quincy German Guards used it as an armory. I'antaleon
Sohm was lieutenant of the company, taking part in the Mormon



348 QUINCY AND ADAMS COUNTY

war of 1844, he being in Carthage when Joseph Smith, founder of
the Mormon Church, was shot June 27, 1844. In 1860 he retired
and opened a grocery store at Third and York streets, which he eon-
ducted until his death in 1885. Pantaleon Sohm in 1840 married
Rosina Speeht, born in Forehheim, Baden, who came to Quiuey in
1834 with her parents, Paul and Theresia (Mast) Speeht, her mother
being a sister of Michael Mast, the first German who located in Quiuey.
After the death of her husband she eontiiuied the grocery business
for ten years. She then retired and spent her time visiting with her
children until her death October 3, 1913, at the high old age of eighty-
eight years. Edward Sohm, the eldest son, bom in Quincy October
2, 1845, received a good education and at the age of eighteen became
a teacher in St. Boniface School. August 13. 1867, he married Bar-
bara Helmer, born in St. Louis, daughter of I\Ir. and Mrs. Simon
Helmer. At that time he entered a business career as a member of
the firm H. Ridder & Co., queensware merchants. In 1884 the com-
pany was dissolved and the firm Sohm, Ricker & Weisenhorn organ-
ized. This company in 1913 became the Roantree China Company.
Edward Sohm has been prominent in financial circles for many years.
The Ricker Bank was organized in 1881, and, with the exception of
three years, he has been connected with that bank during all that
period up to the present time, for the first three yeai's as vice president,
and then as president, continually succeeding himself in that position,
a record of which he may well be proud. Besides this he is identified
with various other financial, iiulustrial, and mercantile establishments
as stockholder or director. When the Germania Printing and Pub-
lishing Company was organized in 1874, Edward Sohm was elected
as treasurer of the company, a position which he held for many years.
He was one of the organizers of the Quincy Freight Bureau and its
treasurer, also treasurer of the Firemen's Benevolent Association. In
every movement of public importance he at all times was one of the
most effective workers and most valuable advisers. Though repeatedly
tendered prominent public offices he steadfastly refused, devoting him-
self entirely to business and to the upbuilding of the city of his
birth. Children living are : Mrs. Theodore Heidemann of Quincj' ;
Will H. Sohm, manager of the Belasco Theater in Quincy; Edward
Sohm, Jr., of Waterloo, Iowa ; Mrs. Theresa Brockmann, of Mount
Sterling, Illinois, and Dr. Albert Sohm, dentist, in Quincy. Joseph
H. Sohm, the second son of Pantaleon and Rosina (Speeht) Sohm,
was born in Quincy September 12, 1850. After he had grown to man-
hood he for some time conducted a retail grocery business. Then he
entered the employ of Henry Ridder & Co., as traveling salesman.
Later he was traveling salesman for Sohm, Ricker & Weisenhorn,
and in 1884 became a partner in the business until his death, six
years ago; his widow, Theresia, nee Weltin, lives in California.
Joseph H. and Theresia (Weltin) Sohm had two sons, Ferdinand, in a
bank in Chicago, and Joseph, traveling salesman for a wholesale coffee
house in St. Louis, and two daughters, Bertha, wife of Frank J. Reim-



QUIMV AM) ADAMS L'OLXTV :i49

hold ill Chicago, and Clara, wife of James R. Shoaii in Los Angi'les,
California. John A. Sohni, third son of Pantak'on and Kosina
(Specht) Sohm, was horn in Quincy August 11, 1854. He is the well
known jiainter and dei-orator. an art which he with miusual talent
ac(|uircd and practiced for many years, after working for one year
with Martin Stadler, who also was an artist in his calling. June 19,
1877. John A. Sohm married Helena Weltin. They have one son.
George, who was hookkee])er with the Standard Oil Company in this
city, and at present is serving in the army of the United States; and
one daughter, memlier of the Order of Xotre Dame, at Washington,
Missouri. ^Mrs. John A. Sohm has in her possession (luite an inter-
esting relic, the old scissors which Michael Mast, the first German
settler in Quincy, brotight from the fatherland when he came to Amer-
ica in 1816. lie being a tailor, used these scissors in his business in
Germany more than 100 years ago, and then in America until he
retired from active business, when he presented it to his niece, Mrs.
Rosina (Specht) Sohm, who finally gave it to her daughter-in-law.
Mrs. John A. Sohm.

Settlers of 1840

Gerhard Kroner, born Jlanh 9, 1816, in Grossendohren, Hanover,
emigrated to America in 1840, came by way of New Orleans, and
located in Quincy. where he, in 1841, married Marie Starmann, also
born in Hanover. His wife died in 1851, and May 25, 1852, Gerhard
Kroner married for the second time, his choice being Marie Hoeding-
haus. She was born June 5, 1834. near Paderborn. Westi>halia, and
came to Quincy in 1851. The family lived immediately south of the
city in Jlelrose Township, where they for many years raised all kinds
of garden products, ilay 25, 1901. the couple celebrated their golden
wedding. Both have since died. Children living are: Frank Kroner,
dairyman ; Josephine, wife of Frank Wiskirchen, and Cecelia, wife
of John Wiskirchen, all in Melrose.

Jacob Wolf was liorii June 16, 1784, in Buchsweilcr, Alsace.
Napoleon I wanted him to take part in the campaign of 1812 against
Russia, but Jacob Wolf had no inclination to do so. and joined the
Prussian army. Later he nuirried Sophia Rogge. born in Prussia in
1787. In 1830 the couple came to America, locating in Kentucky, and
in the early '40s they came to Adams County, locating near Jlill Creek,
where Jacob Wolf for many years followed agrieultnral pursuits until
his death, October 10, 1866, his wife following him in death November
2, 1870. Anna Sophia, a daughter of Jacob and Sophia (Rogge)
Wolf became the wife of Blasius Mueller, born in Stacttin, Siginar-
ingcn, who was among the early settlers in Quincy, where he for
many years followed his calling as carpenter and builder; another
daughter. .\nna Louisa, became the wife of Henry Dover, a tailor,



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