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Album of genealogy and biography, Cook County, Illinois : with portraits (Volume 1900) online

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Europe.

Mr. Manz has been twice married. January 6,
1859, he wedded Miss Carolina Knoepfli, who
died September 7, 1866. She was a native of
Ossingen, Switzerland. Two of her children are
living, namely: Caroline and William Manz.
November 24, 1867, Mr. Manz married Johanna
Hesse, who was born in Crivitz, Mecklenburg.
Germany. Her children are Ida, Paul, Adolph
and Helena Manz.



HUGO NEUBERGER.



HUGO NEUBERGER. Germans as a class
are a thrifty people, and when, after some
years, those who have come from the Fa-
therland return to pay their visits to old, loved
scenes, their friends wonder at the wealth Fort-
une has allowed them to so quickly acquire
in our beloved country of such advantages; for
here each man is equal in the eyes, not only of



God, but the law; here he may do as he pleases,
so long as he does not commit a crime or trespass
upon the rights of his neighbors. Politically,
they are formidable too, for we can see in the
election of Governor Altgeld what power is theirs
when they unite upon a candidate.

A man of influence among his fellow-citizens
was Hugo Neuberger, who was born at Camberg,



HUGO NEUBERGER.



261



near Frankfort, Germany, on the 8th day of April,
1819. He came of a good family, one of his
brothers afterward becoming Mayor of his native
place, in which office he was continued for a
period of twenty years. Hugo, being a younger
son, and denied, according to the laws of the Old
World, some of the rights and advantages of an
elder child, like so many other enterprising young
men, came to this country to seek his fortune (or,
let us say, to make his fortune) , in boyhood. He
settled very soon after his arrival in his life-long
home, Chicago, which he grew to love with that
strong attachment entertained by all the old set-
tlers, who have seen its wonderful rise from a
sandy lowland (not unlike a part of Holland) to
its present growth as the metropolis of the Mis-
sissippi Valley, and destined before long to be-
come one of the most powerful cities of the globe.

He bought, after many exchanges (for he was
a man of speculation, a typical American, always
ready for a trade) , the valuable piece of property
now known as Nos. 284 and 286 North Clark
Street, about the year 1860. Here he built a
substantial frame house, used as a grocery and
(according to the Old Country custom) a beer
hall combined, with his residence adjoining.
This was destroyed some years after his death,
in the great fire of 1871. His widow rebuilt more
substantially in brick a structure of three stories,
now used as dwelling flats, having by self-denial
and unusual good sense been able to keep the
property and family together, and to see the latter
properly brought up to become useful members
of the community.

Mr. Neuberger had been a landscape-gardener
in Germany; but it is needless to remark in those
early days there was no demand for such services
in this vicinity, although no doubt at this date,
were he again to come among us as he did so
many years ago, his able intelligence would be
eagerly sought by the owners of some of our pal-
atial residences, for we have already grown to
number in our midst some of the finest homes
to be found anywhere in the country. Accord-
ingly, he turned his active mind to something that
was practicable in those days, from which he had
the satisfaction of knowing that he died in fair



circumstances, and future advances certainly con-
spired to give to his family who survived him a
success in life which at that time could not have
been altogether foreseen.

He was a consistent Democrat, voting regularly
but never seeking office. He was a Catholic in
faith, although his family, like their mother, have
altogether embraced the Lutheran tenets. As a
citizen he was law-abiding and reliable and had
many friends. He died in July, 1863, and was
buried in the family lot in Graceland Cemetery.
Had he lived to more mature years he would have
been justly proud of his family, whom it was fated
he should be taken from in middle life.

Mr. Neuberger married, May 25, 1854, Miss
Magdalena Ludwig, of Detroit, Michigan, a
daughter of Simon and Margaret (Knaben) Lud-
wig, who emigrated from Baden, Germany. She
was born in the City of Straits, July 18, 1835,
removing to this city in early life, where she
grew to know and love the subject of this sketch;
and although widowed in early life, she has been
faithful to his memory ever since, as she will die,
filled with the trust of guiding aright the family
of young people entrusted by God to her moth-
erly charge. All of them have grown to be a
comfort to her, respectable members of the com-
munity, and some of them with descendants who
call her "Grandma." It is owing to her watch-
ful care during the past more than thirty years
that her children grew up in honor, and that they
could be kept together in a home, and with a
property left them (of comparatively little value
at the time) now grown to be of considerable
worth.

Four children were the fruits of their happy,
though short, wedded life. Louise, born April 3,
1855, married, April 5, 1883, Julian Vandeberge,
of Chicago, an editor in good standing; they have
two children, Madeline Marie and Julian. Ba-
betta married, in 1892, David J. Lyons, of the
merchant police force, who unfortunately died the
following year, leaving no children. Magdalene
is unmarried. Hugo George married, in 1887,
Miss Emma L- Hunting, of Chicago, who died
in 1892, leaving two children, Anna Louise and
Florence Augusta. He has been for some years a



262



E. F. PEUGEOT.



commercial traveler, but at present is employed
on the merchant police.

We thus see that Mr. Neuberger established



bring honor and fame to his name. Therefore it
is eminently fitting that his history should be
preserved herein, that those who shall follow in



one of the representative German families of the after years may gain a faint idea of the early life



city, whose members, as they grow more and
more into harmony with American ideas, will



of this Chicago pioneer.



EDWARD F. PEUGEOT.



ITDWARD FREDERICK PEUGEOT, an
ry early citizen of Chicago, and at one time a
|_ leading merchant and importer, was born in
Buffalo, New York, September 8, 1836, and was
the son of Peter Peugeot, a native of France. He
was also a relative of Peugeot Brothers, the fa-
mous bicycle manufacturers of Paris. Peter Peu-
geot was a highly esteemed citizen of Buffalo,
New York, to which city he removed from France
in 1833. He was engaged several years in the
hardware business, and as a manufacturer of ma-
chinery, but, having amassed a competency, he
retired from active business twenty years before
his death, which occurred November 22, 1875, in
the seventy -fourth year of his age, having been a
resident of Buffalo forty-two years. His wife, De-
siree, nee Sachet, also a native of France, survived
him, and her death occurred in November, 1886.
They were the parents of thirteen children, all
but two of whom died before their father. Ellen
J. became the wife of Judge W. M. Oliver, ol
Buffalo, and died at San Marcial, New Mexico,
while there trying to restore her health. An-
other daughter, Amelia, now deceased, became
the wife of George P. Bird, now a wealthy mill-
owner in Helena, Montana.

The other survivor was Edward, the subject
of this sketch, who came to Chicago in 1857,
when twenty-one years of age, and displayed
great ability in building up the largest toy im-
porting house in the West, which was known as
Peugeot's Variety Store. During the time when
his business was largest, he made annual visits



to France to select goods. He was the local rep-
resentative of some of the largest and best known
manufacturing companies in France. When Chi-
cago was destroyed in 1871, he lost everything,
and, on account of the failure of the local insur-
ance companies, caused by the unparalleled mag-
nitude of their losses, he realized nothing from
that source. However, he went into business
again after the fire, and to some extent retrieved
his fortune.

On the 1 4th of March, 1861, Mr. Peugeot was
married to Maria L,. Flershem, daughter of Lem-
uel H. Flershem, who is mentioned at length in
this volume. Four children blessed the home of
Mr. Peugeot, namely: Nina, now the wife of
Conrad Mueller, real- estate dealer and Assistant
Clerk of the Sheriff of New York County; she
has one child, Edward Herman Mueller. lone,
the second daughter, resides with her mother.
Pierre and Leon are now in the employ of W.
McGregor & Company, of Chicago. Mr. Peugeot
died August 8, 1886, and subsequently his widow
became the wife of William McGregor (see sketch
elsewhere in this work).

Edward F. Peugeot was a man in whom those
elements so essential to social popularity and
business success were prominent, and he was al-
ways the center of a large circle of admiring
friends. He was a very enterprising merchant,
possessing a high character and integrity, and
left to his children, as a legacy, a good name and
an excellent example of true manhood .



FERDINAND LINK.



263



FERDINAND LINK.



[~~ ERDINAND LINK. ' 'Der Gipfel des Ber-
IV % es f un k tt i m abend Sonnenschein" sings
I * the beautiful, irresistible Lorellei, seated
upon the picturesque summits of those storied,
castle-crowned highlands of the Rhine, whence
she drew to herself all who came within the scope
of her vision. It is proper now to write modestly
of one born in the Fatherland, to whom the sound
of ' 'America' ' was, like the harmony of theold folk-
song, an entrancing melody, full of bright proph-
ecy, the hope of whose fulfillment he could not
withstand.

Ferdinand Link was born on the ist of No-
vember, 1829, in Birkigt Herzogthum, Meinin-
gen, Germany, his parents being Trougott and
Rosina (Schmidt) Link, persons of respectable
attainments, who lived and died in the Old Coun-
try. At about his fourteenth year he had com-
pleted the learning of the same trade as his
father, a carriage-maker, after which, in accord-
ance with the custom of his countrymen, he
traveled to improve his knowledge of the craft, a
phase of intelligent life very interestingly set forth
by the great Goethe in his immortal ' ' Wilhelm
Meister."

Having acquired whatever seemed necessary to
thoroughly fit his genius to his life-work, he re-
solved to come to the United States of America;
so, in 1848, at the age of nineteen, he set sail
from Bremen upon a passage which took forty-
nine days in crossing to Baltimore, where he
disembarked on the 6th of July, 1848. Presently
he found employment at his old trade with a
Mr. Bishop, with whom he remained for a time
in mutual good-will. Anon, desirous to see more
of the New World, and getting on famously with



the new language, he set out for Richmond, Vir-
ginia, via the Natural Bridge, up to Abington,
where he continued his trade for a season, or un-
til the ist of November, 1850. Thence, at that
time, he proceeded to Kingston Springs, and by
way of the Mississippi River as far south as New
Orleans, directly returning as far north as this
city, which he reached the last week in Decem-
ber, 1850, and where for more than forty years
he has continued uninterruptedly to reside, pros-
pered, honored, and full of dignified interests in
our midst.

Mr. Link is a very modest man, but in his
craft it remains true that in the younger days he
was the peer of any in our city, which is amply
evidenced by some handiwork, so superior and
excellent, that it raises a well-defined doubt as
to whether there was any other here who at that
time could have done so skillfully. In the lan-
guage of the country whence he came to our
shore, he was a master mechanic, a ' 'turner' ' of
rare ability. Among the things which came
like magic from his deft touch were the following,
which recur readily to the mind: A finely carved
turnout for Governor Wise, of Virginia; the first
hearse ever used in our city which had glass sides,
made for Undertaker Gavin, before which they
used a rough conveyance with a pall thrown over
the coffin; and the first public hack ever con-
structed here or seen upon our pioneer streets.
Surely this is quite sufficient to establish Mr.
Link's right to be remembered as one of the best
' 'turners' ' who ever lived with us, and certain-
ly the man who did the first really fine kind of
work in several valuable lines.

For eleven years he was foreman for Richard



264



FERDINAND LINK.



Biel, a carriage manufacturer on the West Side,
who has now gone to the "bourne whence no
traveler returns. ' ' While working at his trade,
Mr. Link also began to turn his attention to that
source of financial wealth which has made most
of our rich men, and that was to real-estate in-
vestments; for never in the history of the world
has there been so much money made in so short
a time out of building sites as right here in our
little Cook County, Illinois. Foreseeing himself
what would certainly come of it, he began to make
good moves in this direction as fast as he could
get money to buy with. On State Street, near
Chestnut, which for the greater part has been the
locality of his winning moves, he purchased a
piece of land and proceeded, in 1858, to put up
some houses for rent. The results were gratify-
ing from the start.

In the winter of 1 864, in reduced health (ad-
vised by his physicians to do so if he wished to
prolong his life), he took his family and went to
California. The route, before the days of the
steam horse, was from New York City, via the
West Indies and the Carribean Sea, to Aspinwall
and Panama, and then by another line of steam-
ers to San Francisco, in which last city he stopped
for some time, his condition being much amelior-
ated by the salubrious climate, and his interest
deeply aroused by the quaint customs of that
strange new country, whose hills were made of
gold. For a season he sojourned at Los Angeles (at
a period prior to this of theyfw de siecle), Alame-
da, Warm Springs, and returned home in March,
1867, via Nicaragua and Greytown. Mr. Link's
love of travel is remarkable, and his keenly-
observing eyes, with the note-book which he
invariably keeps, make it intensely interesting
after long years to revisit with him in memorized
record those scenes of former delights.

On his return he invested in more real estate
near the site of his former possessions, and put up
houses upon the same; then came the fire of 1871,
that mighty holocaust which cost so many their
entire fortunes, and did inestimable damage for a
time to all our citizens, until returning courage
resulted in rebuilding better than was ever
dreamed of before. Mr. Link lost by this fire



seven houses, which shows that he had already
grown to be quite a landlord. Nothing daunted,
with that admirable energy which was so charac-
teristic of the age, he mortgaged his land to set
to work and build again, this time including the
construction of a grocery store near the corner of
State and Chestnut Streets, which he personally
conducted up to the year 1882, when he finally
retired from business, well intrenched in his fort-
unes, with hosts of friends his genial, honest and
frank nature had won him, for he never made an
enemy in his life.

That he might spend his closing years ' 'under
his own vine and fig tree, ' ' he bought a fine lot
at Number 76 Walton Place, overlooking the lake
at its foot (and which now has within plain view
the celebrated Newberry Library, since construct-
ed, one of the famous libraries of the world) , where
he erected a commodious home, wherein the years
pass by (when he is not in other scenes) like a
dream of the fabled days of old.

In 1852, tired of single blessedness, Mr. Link
took to his heart a wife (one of the most congen-
ial, entertaining, whole-souled women in our whole
city), Miss Mary Laux being her maiden name.
She was born, like himself, in Germany, in the
town of Losheim, County of Merzig, Province of
Trier, West Prussia, it being territory formerly
belonging to the French, and quite adjacent to
the famous Alsace-Lorraine country of later years'
contest. Her father, Peter Laux (coming of an
old French family), had been a second orderly for
the great Napoleon. At the battle of Leipsig,
his horse being shot under him, he caught the
horse of the first orderly, who had himself been
killed, which was so bewildered by the fray and
smoke of battle, that when soldat Laux, being ig-
norant of the way to his troop, gave the horse his
head, he dashed away into the very enemy 's lines,
where, by a singular mistake, a French flag,
which had been captured, was handed him, he
being taken for one of their own German forces.
Thereupon, he put spurs to his horse and started
like lightning away for the opposite side among
his friends. His horse was shot by the volley
sent after him, and he himself badly wounded in
the leg, sustaining, besides several flesh wounds,



FERDINAND LINK.



265



a fracture of the leg bone. Crawling under a
corn stack, he managed to escape apprehension,
and in this way was left for three days before be-
ing rescued by his own men and taken to hospital
to have his painful wounds dressed. In the mean
time, however, he had crawled to the River Katz-
back to bathe himself, and had kept the old flag,
which later came safely into Napoleon's hands.
This episode stamps him as a man not only of
strong vitality, to withstand such suffering and
hardships, but also as a heroic soul, of no common
mould.

Mr. Laux, in 1840, took his wife and family,
including those who were married, to America;
and at this juncture befel a very pathetic scene.
As they were about to leave France forever, the
vessel bringing from St. Helena the remains of his
old general, Napoleon, was coming into port. He
wept like a child, and exclaimed, "Why art thou
not alive, that I might again forsake my friends
and family to follow thee?" With Barbara, his
wife, he landed upon Chicago soil on the twenty-
fifth day of August, 1840. They have both
passed to their eternal rewards, for few of the
older settlers are longer left to greet us.

Mrs. Link was born the twenty-fifth day of
March, 1833, so that she began her blissful wed-
ded life at the early age of nineteen. One child
has blessed their union, Ferdinand Eugene Link,
who was born September 10, 1852. He learned
his trade of druggist with Mr. Van Derburg, and
went into the employ of Tollman & King, whole-
sale druggists, with whom he still remains, his
services being rewarded with the responsible po-
sition of manager. He was married, in 1875, to
Miss Marion Langdon of this city, by whom he
has three children, Ferdinand (third), Marion and
John.

Politically the subject of this sketch is a Dem-
ocrat, not an office-seeker, nor fanatic in his views;
locally, he invariably selects the best man, in his
candid judgment, for support.

Physically Mr. Link is not a large man, but
so engaging in manner that he seems to rise at
times to the stature of a giant, as he graphically
depicts interesting experiences he has passed
through in his varied life of many vicissitudes.



He is one of the most unassuming, genial men
it is one's good fortune to run across, hospitable
and full of good parts. As an instance of the po-
etic feeling of his soul (a thing somewhat rare in
our crowding, rushing city) , at an advanced age,
he bought a fine piano, and started in to learn
music. He progressed with such amazing rapidity
that, although he had but six months' lessons, he
really plays very well, and some difficult pieces
of classical music, too. It is one of the proudest
recollections of his experience that he was per-
mitted, on a foreign tour, to play for a few mo-
ments upon the piano of Frederick the Great, in
the castle at Potsdam, during which exceptionally
honored occasion he very touchingly ran through
the pathetic bars of "Sad Thoughts of Thee."
One can readily picture this inspiring incident, of
one returning from a new country, full of honor
and wealth, to the home of his nativity, to view
for a season the place that gave him birth. Ah,
it is a strange world we live in, and strange in-
deed are the changes which come to us all!

The incident above related occurred upon his
memorable tour of the continent in 1892, when
he felt he must visit again the old endeared scenes
of his boyhood. Not alone those, but France, Bel-
gium and England were traversed; and if anyone
doubts the good use our friend made of his sight,
let him sit for a while listening to the ' 'log book, ' '
as it has been the writer's privilege, and doubt
would vanish before the perfect light of enrapt-
ured conviction. It is understood that he is plan-
ning another trip abroad for the near future, for
he is an indefatigable traveler.

In closing, we must not forget to say, that as
his earthly life has been correct, and his surround-
ings beautiful and uplifting, so he has had the
wise foresight to see to it that his remains after
death may be in a temporary earthly mansion
suitable to his wishes. In the family lot at St.
Boniface Cemetery, he has finished the construc-
tion of a family tomb, which for exquisiteness of
design and perfection of execution is unsurpassed.
There is no finer owned or erected in this city's
places of burial. The exterior facades are of
that handsome, durable stone, rock-faced, known
as Blue Bedford; while the interior rises grace-



266



W. W. PHELPS.



fully and without that sense of oppression so fre-
quent in low-constructed burial places, being com-
posed of English Channel fire brick and elegant
imported Italian marbles. In the center rises the
catafalque, which will one day contain the last
mortal remains of our dear friend and his beloved



spouse. Each one has his themes of delight. Can
there be a more beautiful wish than to lie securely
safe after one's earthly existence is over, surround-
ed by the beauties which, like the hills, pass not
away until the judgment day?



WILLIAM W. PHELPS.



fi>C>ILLIAM WALLACE PHELPS, one of
\Al tne ear ^ est arj d most conscientious of our
VY business men, was born at Conesville,
Schoharie County, New York, June 17, 1825. His
parents were George and Mary (Chapman)
Phelps.

Being of the generation of self-made men, he
started out with a clear, straightforward mind,
aided by a common-school instruction, to do his
life work as the Creator foresaw it would come to
pass.

First in Oneida, at nineteen years of age, and
elsewhere in his native State, he waited upon
customers as a clerk behind merchants' counters,
and in 1847 wenttoCatskill, Greene County, New
York, to clerk for Potter Palmer. It is needless
to add, he did his humble early duties as faith-
fully and ably as he bore the later more hon-
orable and distinguished burdens which time
demonstrated he was more than equal to carrying.

Henceforth he was fated to join forces with that
truly royal man, Potter Palmer, the bare mention
of whose name thrills the listener with intense
admiration, and conjures up in his mind the
rapid achievement of our unrivalled city; in all
and through all of which none has been more
modestly conspicuous and helpful than Mr. Pal-
mer. Along with Mr. Palmer, Mr. Phelps was
mainly to work out his destiny. It was fitting,
for they were brothers-in-law; and so long, un-
ruffled and intimate were their mutual relations



and regard for each other, that the two men
actually grew more and more in personal appear-
ance alike. One glance at Mr. Phelps' face,
as the artist left it for our delight, and the
lineaments of his ' 'dear friend Potter' ' suggest
themselves. Together they removed, in 1851, to
Lockport, New York, there engaging in business
for about one year only, for in 1852 they started
resolutely for the then Far West, resting their
weary limbs by the head of the beautiful Lake
Michigan, in which place fortune had decreed
they should win honorable names and a goodly
portion of the desires of this life. One has quite
finished his labors and is at rest above all earthly
value. Soon the other will go to his comrade's
side, while this scene shall know their presence no
more; but history is the better, and future genera-
tions, though they may lealize it not, will be the
happier and better that two such American noble-
men were among us in our infancy.

Soon after their advent, Mr. Palmer, having
some capital at command, entered into the dry-
goods business, wherein Mr. Phelps was his con-
fidential friend and financial secretary for long



Online LibraryJohn MorleyAlbum of genealogy and biography, Cook County, Illinois : with portraits (Volume 1900) → online text (page 40 of 111)