Centennial Portrait and Biographical Record of the City of Dayton and of Montgomery County, Ohio
Pages 1041-1054 Christian Rohrer to Hon. Emanuel Shultz

CHRISTIAN ROHRER, [pages 1041-1042] deceased, for many years a prominent citizen of German township, Montgomery county, Ohio, was born in Lancaster county, Pa., December 2, 1804, a son of Christian and Anna Maria (Forrer) Rohrer, both natives of the Keystone state. His father and grandfather, the latter also named Christian, as well as himself, were born on the same farm in Lancaster county, Pa. This land was deeded by one of William Penn's agents to a member of one of the earlier Rohrer families, and was in their possession over 150 years—this ownership ending in 1878, at the death of the last surviving brother, in Pennsylvania, at the age of eighty-six years.

Christian Rohrer, our subject, was reared to manhood in his native state, receiving a good education, and on attaining his majority inherited from his father's estate a farm and sawmill property. About 1828 he came to Ohio and Indiana on a prospecting tour, and on returning to Pennsylvania disposed of his property, and in 1831 settled in German township, Montgomery county, Ohio. Here he purchased a flouring-mill one mile west of Germantown, which he operated until 1847. He then purchased the Risinger mill property, including seventy-five acres of land, rebuilt the distillery which was on the farm, and which he had operated since 1835, and embarked in the manufacture of high wines and liquors, making the first Bourbon whiskey distilled in Montgomery county.  He continued in the business until 1861, when he retired.

November 29, 1832, Christian Rohrer married Margaret, daughter of Christopher and Catherine (Kern) Emerick, who had settled in German township in 1804; she bore him five children, viz: Anna M. (Mrs. Thomas Grubb), David, Elizabeth (Mrs. Samuel Kaucher), Josephine (Mrs. Henry H. Byers), and John H. Mr. Rohrer was one of the solid and successful business men of the Miami valley, was one of the charter members of the First National bank of Germantown, one of the original stock-holders of the C., H. & D. Railroad Co., and always took a deep interest in worthy public enterprises, as well as in the progress, growth and development of the valley. He died July 30, 1883, and his wife, who was born March 8, 1813, departed this life August 16, 1889.

John H. Rohrer, a business man of Germantown, was born in German township, July 21,1858, a son of Christian and Margaret (Emerick) Rohrer, mentioned above.  He passed his youth in his native township, was educated in the public schools, and in 1879 began his business career by purchasing a half interest in the Diamond Flour mills at Gratis, Ohio, with which he was connected for one year, after which he spent four years in Kansas and the Indian territory, looking after real estate and cattle interests. In 1886 he embarked in the tobacco business at Germantown, Ohio, with J. C. Schaeffer, and, in 1890, also engaged with Mr. Schaeffer in the grain, coal and lumber business, which, as J. H. Rohrer & Co., has successfully continued since. He married, December 16, 1886, Julia A., daughter of George C. and Mary (Bachman) Banker, of Germantown, and has had born to him four children: Margaret E., Mary, Robert (deceased) and Eugene.   Mr. Rohrer is a thirty-second degree Mason, and a member of the I. 0. 0. F., Friendship lodge. No. 21, of Germantown, and also of the encampment. In politics he is a republican.

 

DAVID ROHRER, [page 1042] a prominent citizen and well known distiller of Germantown, was born in German township, Montgomery county, Ohio, November 10, 1835, a son of Christian and Margaret (Emerick) Rohrer, whose biography appears above. He was reared in his native township and educated in the public schools, and at the age of twenty-two years entered his father's distillery. In 1857 he became a partner, and, as C. Rohrer & Son, the business continued up to 1861. Christian Rohrer retiring, David then continued the business alone up to 1868. During this period, in 1863, he erected a new distillery, with a capacity of ten barrels of Bourbon whisky per day.  In 1868 Charles Hofer, of Cincinnati, was admitted as a partner, the firm becoming D. Rohrer & Co., and the partnership existing until 1883, when Mr. Rohrer purchased Mr. Hofer's interest. He has since successfully conducted the business alone and has added to the capacity of his distillery, the output being now forty barrels per day. Mr. Rohrer was married, February 1, 1865, to Ada V., daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth (Schultz) Rohrer, natives of Maryland, who settled in Montgomery county, Ohio, in 1826. To this union were born five children: Josie (Mrs. F. N. Emerick), Albert, Ada V., Eugenia and Frank C.

Mr. Rohrer is one of the progressive business men of Montgomery county, whose success has been achieved by upright dealing in all the affairs of life.  He is a member of the I. 0. 0. F., and in religious belief is an advocate of the Universalist doctrine. In politics he is a republican.

 

JOHN S. ROBERTSON, M. D., [pages 1042-1043] a prominent physician of Germantown, was born in Hanover, Columbiana county, Ohio, July 25, 1843, and is a son of John and Margaret E. (Vallandigham) Robertson, natives of Prince Edward's Island and Columbiana county, Ohio, respectively.

Rev. James Robertson, his paternal grandfather, was a native of Perth, Scotland, a graduate of the university of Glasgow, and a Presbyterian clergyman. He was a member of the Scotch colony which first emigrated to Prince Edward's Island, and thence to the Scotch settlement in Columbiana county, Ohio, where he resided until his death, having had charge of the Presbyterian congregation in Hanover for several years. His wife was Janet Stuart. The maternal grandfather of John S. Robertson was the Rev. Clement Vallandigham, a native of Washington county, Pa., of Scotch-Irish descent, also a Presbyterian minister; and he and Rev. James Robertson above mentioned, were the first two Presbyterian clergymen in Columbiana county, Ohio, and formed nearly all the churches of that denomination in that county. His wife was Rebecca Laird.

John Robertson, father of John S., was for many years engaged in the drug and dry-goods business at New Lisbon, Ohio, was the first postmaster of New Lisbon under Abraham Lincoln, and died there in 1871.

John S. Robertson was educated at the New Lisbon high school, and subsequently taught school several years, at the same time giving his attention and spare moments to the study of medicine. He attended medical lectures at the university of Ann Arbor, Mich., and was graduated at the Ohio Medical college at Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1883. He had begun the practice of his profession in Columbiana county, Ohio, in 1868, and in April, 1869, located at Germantown, Montgomery county, where, with the exception of six years, during which he was clerk of the courts, he has since been in the active practice of his profession. Dr. Robertson was married June 19, 1872, to Elizabeth M., daughter of Daniel and Elizabeth (Gunckel) Rowe, of Germantown, and has three children living: Fredonia, Robert L. and Jessie E. Dr. Robertson was a member of the Germantown school board for nine years, during which period he was instrumental in placing the Germantown public library on its present permanent and substantial basis, it having now a collection of 3,000 volumes. He is a member of the I. 0. 0. F., K. of P., A. 0. U. W., and the G. A. R.  During the late Civil war he was a member of company K, One Hundred and Forty-third Ohio volunteer infantry, and was honorably discharged at the expiration of service. He served two terms, 1876-82, as clerk of the courts of Montgomery county, being politically a democrat. In 1893 he was appointed pension examiner upon the home board.  In his profession Dr. Robertson is experienced and reliable, and has the full confidence of the residents of Germantown and vicinity, while as a citizen he holds a firm place in the esteem of the community at large.

 

MOSES B. SCHAEFFER, [page 1043] dealer in agricultural implements at Miamisburg, was born in German township, Montgomery county, Ohio, December 11, 1855, a son of John H. and Maggie (Baum) Schaeffer, both natives of this county.

His paternal grandfather, John Schaeffer, a. native of Frederick, Md., settled in German township at an early day, and cleared and improved the farm now owned by his grandson, Moses B., where he died in 1864. His wife, Eva Kemp, also a native of Maryland, died in 1865. Their children were Elizabeth (Mrs. Jones Monbeck), Louise (Mrs. Daniel H. Fahl), Rebecca (Mrs. Eli Faust), Harriet, Charlotte A. (Mrs. George Kemp), Maria, John H. and Jacob. The great-grandfather of Moses B, Schaeffer also became a resident of this county, where he died many years ago.

John H., father of Moses B. Schaeffer, was born on the old homestead in 1829, and there always resided, with the exception of the last year of his life, which was spent in Miamisburg, where he died September 13, 1894.  His wife was a daughter of Jacob Baum, a pioneer of Miami township.  She bore him one son, Moses B., who was also reared on the homestead, was educated at Oberlin college, and spent one year at the Cincinnati Law school. From early manhood he was engaged in farming, which he followed until 1893, when he removed to Miamisburg, where he has since resided. He was employed for one year as engineer of the Miamisburg Electric Light plant, and was for two years associated with M. T. Apple, as foreman of his planing-mill. January I, 1896, he embarked in business as a dealer in farm implements and farm machinery of every description, in which he is still engaged.

The marriage of Mr. Schaeffer took place October 9, 1879, with Ella W., daughter of James C. and Mary (Wheeler) Anderson, of Carlisle, Ohio; they have five children, named Mary A., May, Bertha P., Fannie and Pearl. Mr. Schaeffer is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and of the I. 0. 0. F., in which he is a past grand, and past patriarch of Miamisburg encampment No. 82.  Politically he is a republican. Mr. Schaeffer's success through life maybe attributed solely to his own industry and the skillful manipulation of the means he had under his control when he started in his business career, and he well deserves the high esteem in which he is held by the residents of Miamisburg and of Montgomery county.

 

JOHN C. SCHAEFFER, [pages 1044-1045] a prosperous business man of Germantown, Montgomery county, Ohio, was born in that town January 27, 1860—a son of William H. and Catherine (Negley) Schaeffer. His paternal grandfather, George C. Schaeffer, formerly of Center county, Pa., came to Germantown, Ohio, about 1820. John C. Negley, maternal grandfather of John C. Schaeffer, was born near Carlisle, Pa., and in 1808 settled in German township, Montgomery county, Ohio. In 1811 he married Mary Shuey, daughter of Martin Shuey, a native of Lebanon county, Pa., who settled in German township in 1805. In 1812 Mr. Negley entered the service of the U. S. government as second lieutenant in the regiment commanded by Col. Pierce, and at the close of the war was chosen captain of a company of militia, and from this time until his death went by the name of Capt. Negley. He died March 16, 1863, in his eighty-fifth year.

William H. Schaeffer, father of John C., was born in Germantown, Ohio, February 11, 1837, a son of George C. and Frances A. (McClure) Schaeffer, both natives of Pennsylvania. His paternal grandfather, Michael Schaeffer, was a native of Pennsylvania and of German descent. George C. Schaeffer came, as above stated, from Center county, Pa., to Germantown, Ohio, about 1820, where he followed his trade of cabinetmaker for some years, and from 1833 to 1858 was proprietor of the Schaeffer House, which, during that period, was the leading hotel of the place. He reared a family of six children: Maria (Mrs. Capt. George Wightman), George, William H., Catherine (Mrs. Josiah Catrow), Ariadne (Mrs. Capt. W. H. Buzzard) and Josephine (Mrs. William Pauley). Mr. Schaeffer died in 1858, at the age of fifty-one years. William H. Schaeffer was reared and educated in Germantown and began life for himself in the distillery business, operating a distillery from 1855 to 1859. He later engaged in farming in German township and also spent two years in Toledo in the livery business. In 1867 he returned to Germantown, and embarked in business as a buyer and packer of leaf tobacco, in which he is still engaged. In 1858, he married Catherine, daughter of Capt. John and Mary (Shuey) Negley, pioneers of Germantown, and has four children: John C., William N., Mary F. and George C.

John C. Schaeffer was reared and educated in Germantown, and in 1878 located at Dayton, Ohio, where he spent four years as clerk in the office of the Pan Handle railroad company and two years as entry clerk in a large wholesale grocery. In 1884 he returned to Germantown, where he embarked in the leaf tobacco business, in which he still continues, having been associated since 1886 with J. H. Rohrer, and since 1890 as a member of the firm of J. H. Rohrer & Co., grain, coal and lumber dealers. On April 6, 1889, he married Laura B., daughter of George C. and Mary (Bachman) Banker, of Germantown, and has three children, George, Catherine and Negley.

George C. Banker, father of Mrs. John C. Schaeffer, was born in Poast Town, Butler county, Ohio, January 12, 1830, a son of Solomon and Mary A. (Coon) Banker, natives of Maryland and Kentucky, respectively.

Solomon Banker was born in 1797, and came to Ohio in 1817, settling in Butler county, where for several years he engaged in milling at Poast Town. Later he engaged in farming. and in 1836 removed to Warren county, where he died in 1861. His wife was a daughter of John and Susannah Coon, who settled in Warren county, Ohio, in 1801. George C. Banker was reared in Butler and Warren counties, was educated in the common schools, and began life as a farmer in Warren county, where he resided until 1866, when he removed to Germantown, where he has since followed the same vocation. He was married in 1857 to Miss Mary A., daughter of Nathan and Julia A. (Bruner) Bachman, of Germantown, and has five children—Julia (Mrs. John H. Rohrer), John, Laura B. (Mrs. John C. Schaeffer), G. Edward and Harry E. In politics Mr. Banker is a republican.

In 1887 Mr. Schaeffer organized the Germantown Building & Savings association, of which he has since been secretary, and has made it one of the successful institutions of the town. Mr. Schaeffer is a member of the I. 0. 0. F., and of the Foresters.  He has been clerk of the corporation of Germantown since 1886, and served on the school board three years. In politics he is a republican.

 

ANDREW CASS SCHELL, [pages 1045-1046] an accountant of Miamisburg, Ohio, is a native of this city, born November  22, 1847, and is a son of John and Catherine (Gebhart) Schell, natives of Berks county, Pa.

Henry and Margaret (Leasher) Schell, his paternal grandparents, came from Pennsylvania to Ohio in 1820, and settled in Miamisburg, where the grandfather followed his calling of cooper, although he devoted much time to farming, and later in life became a manufacturer of plow points. The children born to Henry and Margaret Schell were named John, David, Catherine (Mrs. Andrew Emert), Jonathan, Molly (Mrs. Frederick Yaukey), and Martha (Mrs. Joseph Kutz). The paternal great-grandfather of Andrew C. Schell was a native of Germany, who came to America before the Revolution, in which heroic struggle he served with the rank of captain, and was also a farmer of Berks county, Pa. The other paternal great-grandfather, John Leasher, a native of Germany and a farmer of Berks county, Pa., likewise served as a captain in the Revolutionary war, and participated in the battles of the Brandywine, of Bunker Hill, and in several others of less note. Jacob Gebhart, the maternal grandfather of Andrew C. Schell, was also a Pennsylvanian, and lost his life by accident while crossing the mountains on his way to Ohio in pioneer days.

John Schell, father of Andrew C., was a shoemaker and the pioneer in that business in Miamisburg, and continued the leading dealer until he retired from the business, in 1861. His first wife was a daughter of Jacob and Margaret (Gebhart) Kercher, of Miamisburg, and bore him two children: Matilda (Mrs. Samuel Witmyer), and Harriet (Mrs. Eli Rumberger). His second marriage was with Miss Catherine Gebhart, and this union was blessed with four children, viz:   John H., Emma (Mrs. Dr. Henry Schoenfeld), Margaret E. (deceased), and Andrew C., the subject of this biography. John Schell was recognized as an honorable and industrious citizen, and passed away in 1866.

Andrew Cass Schell was educated in the public schools of Miamisburg and began his business life as a painter, a trade which he followed for twenty years. In 1872 he took a course of instruction at the Miami Commercial college, of Dayton, and for two years was employed as bookkeeper by the Miami Valley Paper company. April 13, 1873, he married Miss Phebe, daughter of Louis and Louisa (Best) Machenheimer, of Miamisburg, to which union have been born three children—Carl, Louisa, and Emma. Since 1892 Mr. Schell has been employed as bookkeeper by the Kauffman Buggy company, and is universally acknowledged to be an adept in his profession. He is a member of the Lutheran church. In his societary affiliations Mr. Schell is a Freemason, and has been secretary in both lodge and chapter since 1880; he is also a Knight of Pythias, and since 1876 has been a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen.  In his politics he is a democrat, has filled the position of village clerk for twelve years, and has just completed his sixth year as a member of the Miamisburg school board, of which for five years he served as clerk. He is honored in all the walks of life and is, indeed, a good and useful citizen.

 

HON. HENRY SCHOENFELD, M. D., [pages 1046-1047] was born in the city of Gelnhausen, in the province of Hesse-Nassau,  Germany, November 26, 1829. He is a son of Dr. Henry and Margaret (Kohler) Schoenfeld, who, in 1844, came to the United States, and located in Lancaster, Pa. Receiving his early education in the province of Hesse-Nassau, after coming to this country he spent some time in the study of medicine with his father at Lancaster, and also under a private tutor. Dr. Jacob Cooper, a graduate of Bellevue Hospital Medical college of New York city, and under the instruction of Dr. Ignatz Hoefle, a graduate of a medical college in Paris.

Dr. Schoenfeld has always been of a venturesome disposition. In 1846 he spent a year in Cincinnati, as a prescription clerk in a drug store, and during the Mexican war he enlisted in Cincinnati, and went to Mexico, but on account of being under age was sent home on a requisition, much against his will.

In 1848, during the excitement throughout the country caused by the discovery of gold in the west, he went to California, going round Cape Horn in a sailing vessel.  In California and in travel down the Pacific coast as far south as Chile, he spent three years. While in California he was engaged in prospecting for gold, working in the mines, fighting Indians as a member of a volunteer company, and had many adventures in the unsettled country as one of the historic "forty-niners, " or modern Argonauts.  Returning in 1851 to Pennsylvania, via the isthmus of Panama, he entered the medical department of the university of Pennsylvania, and afterward spent one year in practice at Penningtonville, Pa., locating in 1853 at Miamisburg, Ohio, where he has ever since been engaged in the active pursuit of his profession,  Since 1877 he has done an exclusively office practice.

During the Civil war Dr. Schoenfeld was colonel of the First regiment of Home Guards of Montgomery county, the guards being held as a reserve force, ready to be called on at any time. In 1865 he visited Germany and was there forcibly detained for military duty. Spending the first two weeks in a military prison, he was then detailed as a member ,of the king's body guard. Refusing to take the oath of allegiance, he was unable to secure relief or assistance from the United States minister, and after six months' litigation was released on an order of the supreme court, which acknowledged that Germany had no claim upon him. Dr. Schoenfeld is a democrat, and in 1859 was elected to represent Montgomery county in the state legislature, and was re-elected in 1871.  During the administration of Gov, Bishop he was a trustee of the Dayton asylum for the insane. He served fourteen years in the Miamisburg city council, at last declining to accept another term.  He also served as president of the Miamisburg board of health. Dr. Schoenfeld has been a member of the order of Odd Fellows and of the Harugari for nearly forty years, and was a charter member of the A. 0. U. W. lodge and the Knights of Pythias lodge in Miamisburg.  In the Harugari lodge he has been the ober grosse barde, chief officer of the United 'States, and for two terms has served as grosse barde of the state of Ohio.

September 7, 1857, Dr. Schoenfeld married Emma Schell, daughter of John and Catherine (Gebhart) Schell, of Miamisburg. To this marriage there have been born three sons, viz: Henry, M. D.; John and Charles. Dr. Schoenfeld is a true patriot, a good neighbor and a warm-hearted friend, worthy of all honor as a man and a citizen, and stands deservedly high in his profession, as also in social circles.

 

LOUIS SCHELLHAAS, [page 1047] baker and confectioner of Miamisburg, Montgomery county, Ohio, was born in Rhinefalz, Germany, November 11, 1859, a son of John and Catherine (Kurtz) Schellhaas. He received his education in the public schools of his native city, and there also learned his trade. At the age of twenty years he entered the German army in which he served three years; he next worked at his calling as a journeyman in his native land until 1884, when he came to the United States and located in Miamisburg, where he worked at his trade for nearly a year, and afterward in Dayton for six months. In November, 1885, he returned to Miamisburg and embarked in his present business, in which he has since met with uninterrupted success.

November 26, 1885, Mr. Schellhaas was united in marriage with Mary, daughter of Jacob and Barbara Leicht, of Miamisburg, and they have two children—Harry and Elsie.

Mr. Schellhaas is a member of the Lutheran church, and is active in the secret brotherhoods of the Harugari and the Ancient Order of United Workmen; in politics he is a democrat, and his social relations are of a most pleasant nature, as he is highly esteemed both as a business man and as a citizen.

 

PETER SCHREIBER, [page 1047] baker, of Miamisburg, Ohio, was born in Alsace-Lorraine, September 15, 1857, a son of Peter and Catherine (Eberle) Schreiber. The father was for fifteen years a captain in the French army, and for twenty-three years city sealer of Strasbourg, where his death took place in 1894.

Peter Schreiber, the subject of this biography, at the age of fifteen years graduated from the Strasbourg high school, and in 1872 came to America, first locating in Cincinnati, where he learned the baker's trade, which he followed for six years in that city. He then served as streetcar conductor for five years, after which he again worked at his trade in the city and vicinity until 1888, when he located permanently in Miamisburg. In October, 1893, he embarked in business on his own account, became very popular and successful, and November 1, 1895, he founded a branch establishment at West Carrollton, where he is enjoying a flourishing trade.

February 28, 1877, Mr. Schreiber married Miss Mary C. Kluever, daughter of William Kluever, of Cincinnati, which marriage has been blessed by the birth of six children, viz: Catherine, William, Peter, Dora, Fred and Carl. In his religion he worships at the Lutheran church, and his political connection is with the republican party; fraternally, he is a Knight of Pythias, and a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, as well as of the Harugari, and is highly respected by the members of all of these fraternities, as well as by the public in general.

 

JACOB SCHNEIDER, [pages 1047-1048] proprietor of Star City Arcade, Miamisburg, Ohio, was born in Wurtemberg, Germany, May 6, 1854, a son of Jacob and Anna (Wenzler) Schneider.   His father came to America in January, 1854, and stopped one year in Cincinnati; then for two years in Franklin, where he was employed in various capacities, and in 1857 located at Miamisburg, where he lived until 1859, and then Went back to Germany. In March, 1861, he returned to Miamisburg, where he raised tobacco during the summers and worked about a hotel during the winters for several years, when he visited his home again, and on the death of his wife, in 1871, he brought his family of two sons—Joseph and Jacob—to Miamisburg. He visited Germany again in 1876, remaining six months, and, returning, died in Miamisburg in August, 1879.

Jacob Schneider, the subject, was reared in his native country until seventeen years of age, where he received a common-school education.   In 1871 he came to Miamisburg, where he learned the cabinetmaker's trade with Benjamin Brough, and was in his employ for thirteen years. March 17, 1884, he embarked in the furniture and undertaking business, in which he continued eight years, and in the meantime, April 1, 1891, purchased the Star City Arcade cafe and billiard parlors, which he has since successfully conducted. He married, October 31, 1876, Catherine, daughter of Joseph and Frances Gates, of Miamisburg, and has five children—Anna, Robert, Nora, Edward and Lawrence.  Mr. Schneider is a member of the Catholic church, and of D. 0. H., No., 38, of Miamisburg. He is a democrat in politics, and is a respected citizen of the community.

 

HENRY CHRISTIAN SCHUBERTH, [pages 1048-1049] tobacco dealer of Miamisburg, was born at Wandsbek, near Hamburg; Germany, June7, 1848. He is a son of William and Christina (Kahler) Schuberth, who emigrated to the United States in 1852, and in Pennsylvania the former followed his trade, that of a carpenter, for two years, removing to Cincinnati in 1854, and there established himself in business at the corner of Fifth and Elm streets. There he remained in business until 1870, when he returned to Pennsylvania, locating at Unionville, near Pittsburg, where he now resides. His children grew to maturity, and were six in number, as follows:  William; Henry Christian; August C.; Charles; Emma, wife of Albert Burns; and Mary, the wife of John C. Snyder.

Henry C. Schuberth came to the United States with his parents in 1852.  He here received a common-school education, and after clerking four years in Allegheny City, Pa., and in Cincinnati, Ohio, removed to Miamisburg in 1865, and had since resided in this city. In 1865, upon arriving .in Miamisburg, he entered the employ of C. H. Spitzner, who was engaged in the tobacco business, and in 1873 succeeded Mr. Spitzner in that industry, and at the same time acting as the representative of Bunzel & Dormitzer, of New York. Mr. Schuberth is the oldest tobacco dealer in the Miami valley, when continuous and actual service are taken into account.

Mr. Schuberth was married September 29, 1870, to Sarah A. Shultz, of Miamisburg, and has three children, as follows: Clifford M., Mary A. and Harry C.  He is a thirty-second degree Mason, a Knight Templar, an Odd Fellow, a Knight of Pythias, and in politics, a republican, in all of which relations, fraternal and political, he maintains a high and correct standing. In religious faith, he and his wife are members of the Lutheran church, and are active in the performance of their religious duties. Few people, if any, in Miamisburg or Montgomery county, stand higher in the public esteem for honorable character, charitable deeds and sympathy with the afflicted and the poor, than do Mr. and Mrs. Schuberth.

 

JOSEPH W. SHANK, [page 1049] president of the First National bank, of  Germantown, Montgomery county, Ohio, is a native of Maryland and he first saw the light October 8, 1816.

Adam Shank, his father, was also a native of Maryland, born in 1778, was a blacksmith by trade, and shortly after reaching his majority married Miss Catherine Doup, by whom he became the father of a family of children, numbering twelve, of which family the following named grew to maturity: Samuel, Joseph W., Joshua, Lydia(wife of Ezra Kemp), John, Elias and Mary (Mrs. Noah Myers). While Adam Shank was a blacksmith by trade, he drifted into farming, and for a few years followed that vocation in his native state. In 1836 he came to Ohio and settled in Madison township, Montgomery county, where he purchased a farm of 240 acres, on which he resided, prospering year by year, until he was enabled, in 1850, to retire to Germantown, where he ended his days in 1856, honored by all who knew him.

Joseph W. Shank was reared and educated in his native state until twenty years of age, when he came with his parents to Ohio. His start in life, on his individual account, was at the age of twenty years, when he began work as a carpenter, and traveled through the country, working at this trade and finding employment in various other lines of business, twice visiting California. From 1841 to 1871 he engaged in farming in German township, where he owned at one time a farm of 400 acres. But in the meantime, being a man of natural executive ability, and ripened by travel and experience, he assisted in organizing the First National bank, of Germantown, in 1863, and is now the only survivor of the original stock-holders in that financial enterprise, and has been its president since 1881.

The marriage of Joseph W. Shank took place, in 1841, with Maria Branner, daughter of John and Catherine (Harp) Brunner, of Jackson township, Montgomery county, Ohio,, to which union ten children have been born, of whom seven are still living, viz: John A., Seabury F., Mary (Mrs. George Bechtold), Ida (Mrs. Charles Cosier), Emma (Mrs. George Francis), Jabez and Maria. The family are members of the United Brethren church, of which Mr. Shank has himself, for the past forty-five years, been a communicant. In politics he is a republican, but he has never had a desire for public office. His long life has been one of probity and industry, and is well worthy of emulation.

John A. Shank, son of Joseph W, and Maria (Brunner) Shank, was born in Madison township, Montgomery county, Ohio, September 26, 1846. He was, however, reared in German township and educated in its common schools. Brought up a farmer, he now owns and occupies the old Shank homestead, and is one of the well-to-do and prosperous farmers of the neighborhood. He was married, February 2, 1871, to Miss Martha J. Eby, a daughter of Adam S. and Elizabeth (Bertels) Eby, of Madison township, and is now the happy father of three sons, viz: Orion L., Arthur M. and Herbert A. Mr. Shank and his family are members of the United Brethren church, and in politics he is a republican.

 

HENRY SHANK, [pages 1049-1050] of Perry township, Montgomery county, Ohio, is one of the most prosperous and substantial farmers of the county. Jacob Shank, his father, was born in 1782 or 1784 and lived for some years in Fauquier county, Va. When twenty-four years of age he emigrated to Montgomery county, Ohio, together with his father, Henry, and his father's family.  Here he married Elizabeth Noffsinger, who was a native of Pennsylvania and of Dutch ancestry. Jacob and Elizabeth Shank were the parents of the following children: Daniel, Mary, John, Samuel, Susannah, George, Jacob, Henry, Julia A., who died at the age of four years, Eliza, Catherine and Elizabeth. Mr. Shank settled on the farm now owned by his son. Henry, then containing eighty-four acres. This farm he cleared of its timber and added thereto by purchase eighty acres more in Perry township. By his industry and good management he became one of the most substantial farmers of his day.  Both he and his wife were members of the United Brethren church, the first edifice for which body they assisted to build.  Politically, he was a republican.  He died in 1882.

Henry Shank was born January 15, 1827, in Perry township, on his father's farm. Reared a farmer's boy he received the education of the times in which he lived, attending school in the primitive log school-house. At the age of thirty-five, in the year 1862, he married Susan Mundhenk, a daughter of Augustus and Susan (Knipe) Mundhenk, and a native of Perry township. Her father was the son of the old pioneer Mundhenk, of Perry township, whom every one well remembers. The children of Augustus Mendhenk, beside Mrs. Susan Shank, were as follows: Daniel, August, Henry, William, Sarah and Mary. Augustus Mundhenk lived to be seventy-six years of age, and was a miller by trade and occupation, as well as a farmer.

After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Shank settled on the old homestead, which they have since greatly improved, and which now contains 108 acres of land.  Mr. Shank is one of the best farmers of his county, an excellent citizen, a member of the United Brethren church, and a republican.  He is a trustee of his church and has served as trustee of his township.  He and his wife are the parents of the following-named children: Ardella, Lizzie and Charles.

 

NOAH SHANK, [pages 1050-1051] of Perry township, Montgomery county, Ohio, is of Virginia and Pennsylvania-Dutch stock. Henry Shank, his grandfather, was born in Virginia, and married in that state, Catherine Rasor, by whom he had the following children: Jacob, who lived to be nearly if not quite 100 years old; Henry, John, Philip, George, Michael, who lived to be 108 years of age; Barbara, Mary, Elizabeth and two that died in infancy. Mr. Shank came to Ohio in 1819, settled in Perry township, cleared up a farm of 160 acres from the woods and made a good pioneer home. He was an excellent citizen, a member of the United Brethren church and died on his farm in Perry township.

John Shank, his son and the father of Noah, was born in 1812 in Virginia, and came with his father to Ohio in 1819. Being reared among the pioneers and brought up to the life of a farmer, he himself naturally adopted that calling. He married Catherine Heiter, a native of Pennsylvania, and a daughter of Sebastian and Catherine Heiter, who came from Pennsylvania to Ohio and settled in Montgomery county at an early day.

Mr. and Mrs. Shank located first in Madison township, where they lived for some time, then moved into Perry township, and lived on Beaver creek. Mr. Shank at first had ninety-one acres of land. most of which he cleared from the woods. To this he added 150 acres, all of which he converted into an excellent farm, and became a most substantial farmer. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Shank were: Elizabeth, Noah, John, Daniel, Ephraim, Catherine, Joseph, Mary and Martha. Their father was a member of the United Brethren church, and the mother of the Lutheran church.  Mr. Shank lived to be seventy-six years old, while Mrs. Shank lived to the age of eighty-four. Mr. Shank was a hard-working and industrious pioneer and an honored citizen.

Noah Shank was born January 24, 1829, in Perry township. Receiving only the usual common-school education of that period, he was early inured to the laborious life of the farm. One of his duties, when a boy, was to ride the horse at threshing wheat on the barn floor. When he could, he went to school, attending an old log school-house which had slabs for seats, and boasted of the puncheon floor.   When twenty-one years of age, on February 29, 1850, he married, in Madison township, Jemima Weaver, who was born in 1828, in that township, and who is a daughter of Martin and Susan (Jordan) Weaver.   Martin Weaver was of German ancestry and came early from Virginia to Ohio, settling in Madison township, and making an excellent farm of 160 acres of land. His children were as follows: George, Mary A., Eliza, William, David, Martin, John, Susan, Adeline, Sarah and Kate. There were several other children who died young. Mr. Weaver was one of the early blacksmiths of Madison township, a member of the German Reformed church, and one of the prominent citizens of his day.

Mr. and Mrs. Shank, after their marriage, settled on the Shank homestead, where they lived one year, and then rented a farm in Perry township, upon which they lived for three years. Mr. Shank then bought a farm of 137 acres, partly cleared, upon which he erected a fine residence and added other improvements, such as are needed on a well-ordered and regulated farm. Mr. Shank is a member of the Lutheran church and has held the office of deacon for many years. In fact, he was one of those who established the Lutheran church and erected its first church edifice in Perry township. As a democrat he served as health officer of the township for eight years, and as township trustee for seven years. He is a man well known for his strong convictions, and is well-informed and influential in his community.

 

FRANK SHUEY, [pages 1051-1052] a successful machinist of Miamisburg, Ohio, was born in Dayton, February 8, 1855, and is a son of Jacob and Phebe Jane (McCann) Shuey, natives of Montgomery county, and of the sixth generation from Daniel Shuey, a French Huguenot, who landed in Philadelphia, in 1732, and soon afterward settled in Lebanon county, Pa., where he engaged in farming until his death, in 1777.

Lewis Shuey, paternal grandfather of Frank, was born in Bethel township, Lancaster county, Pa., November 17, 1785, and in 1796 was taken by his parents to Augusta county, Va., where he was reared to manhood on a farm. In 1806 he came to Germantown, Montgomery county, Ohio, and January 1, 1808, married Catherine, daughter of Judge Philip and Catherine (Schaeffer) Gunckel, natives of Berks county, Pa., but who. settled in Germantown, Ohio, in 1803. To this marriage were born four sons—Philip, Lewis, Jacob and Michael. After his marriage, Lewis Shuey secured the milling property of his father-in-law, rebuilt and remodeled the mill, became a man of wealth and extended influence, and, at his death, which occurred February 16, 1872, left a large estate to his children. Lewis Shuey was a nephew of Martin Shuey, who settled in German township in 1805, and who was the progenitor of the Dayton family of that name. Aside from the respect paid him on account of his worth as a business man, Lewis Shuey enjoyed the reputation of being a moral and upright gentleman.

Jacob Shuey, father of Frank Shuey, and third son of Lewis and Catherine (Gunckel) Shuey, was born in Germantown, Ohio, January 6, 1814, and first married, December 31, 1835, Sarah Ann Ayers, who bore him four children, viz: William H., Harrison M., George E., and Ellen (wife of William Beringer). Mrs. Shuey was called away February 19, 1847, at the early age of twenty-seven years, and for his second helpmate he chose Phebe J. McCann, a daughter of William McCann, a pioneer fanner and wood turner of Germantown, and this lady he married March 12, 1848. This union was blessed with three children, viz : Dona 0., Philip and Frank. Mr. Shuey was engaged in the dry-goods business in Germantown from 1834 to 1850, when he moved to Dayton, where he continued in the dry-goods trade until 1859. He then moved to Miamisburg, where he successfully carried on milling until his death, which took place March 4, 1870—leaving a spotless name and an unsullied reputation as priceless heirlooms to his descendants.

Frank Shuey, the subject proper of this memoir, was reared in Dayton and Miamisburg, was educated in the public schools and served an apprenticeship of five years as a general machinist in Miamisburg and Cincinnati. He afterward worked as a journeyman in various parts of the country until 1886, when he opened a machine shop on his own account in Miamisburg ; here he does all kinds of work pertaining to the trade, including the manufacture of gas engines and trip hammers of his own invention, and is doing an altogether thriving business. Mr. Shuey was united in marriage, in 1878, with Miss Alice Studybaker, daughter of Wesley Studybaker, of Brookville, Montgomery county. Mr. Shuey and wife are members of the Reformed church, and live fully in accord with its teachings. Fraternally, Mr. Shuey is an Odd Fellow and a Knight of Pythias, and in politics is a republican. Socially, Mr. and Mrs. Shuey enjoy the sincere esteem of the entire community in which they live, and Mr. Shuey's walk through life has been such as to preserve the good name left to him by his progenitors.

 

HON. WILLIAM SHULER, M. D., [pages 1052-1053] a prominent practicing physician of Miamisburg, was born at Sumneytown, Montgomery county, Pa., January 7, 1843. He is a son of Henry and Maria (Miller) Shuler, and, as the name indicates, is of German extraction.  He was first educated in the public schools of his native state, then in the classical department of Ursinus college, and, in 1867, was graduated from the medical department of the university of Pennsylvania, that commencement being the 100th anniversary of its establishment, the university itself, however, having been established in 1753, fourteen years before the medical department.

On October 7, 1861, Mr. Shuler enlisted in company B, One Hundred and Seventh regiment, P. V. I., and re-enlisted, or veteranized, in 1864, in the same company. After serving four years, and enduring all the trials and hardships of the soldier's life, and having been advanced from the ranks for gallant service, he was mustered out, in 1865, as captain of company C, of his regiment. During these four years, beside marching and fighting, and performing all the duties of a patriotic soldier faithfully and cheerfully, he experienced the hardships of prison life in Libby prison, at Danville and at Salisbury, for seven months.

After graduating, as above narrated, he practiced his profession in the east one year, and in August, 1868, located in Miamisburg, Montgomery county, Ohio, where he has since resided, and where he has continued in the practice of his profession with a success which is very gratifying. Politically Dr. Shuler is a republican, has served his town as councilman for six years, and as a member of the board of education for the same period.  For four years he was president of the board of examining surgeons at the soldiers' home, near Dayton, and, in 1893, he was elected to represent his county in the legislature of the state, where he served his constituents so faithfully and well that he was re-elected in 1895 by a largely increased majority.

On October 30, 1871, Dr. Shuler was married to Nora Weaver, of Miamisburg, daughter of Dr. Joseph and Fanny (Swar) Weaver, and to this marriage have been born five children, as follows: Grace, Carl, Fannie, Clara and William. All have been or are now being well educated in the public schools and in private institutions. Dr. Shuler and his wife are pleasant, hospitable and generous, and most popular and influential in both social and religious circles.

 

HON. EMANUEL SHULTZ, [pages 1053-1054] retired manufacturer and an ex-congressman from Ohio, was born in Berks county, Pa., July 25, 1819. He is a son of George and Mary (Vinyard) Shultz, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. His paternal grandfather, Frederick Shultz, was a native of Hesse-Cassel, in the Prussian duchy of Nassau, and came to America prior to the Revolutionary war.  He became a soldier in the American army during that great struggle for independence, and served his adopted country well.

Emanuel Shultz received his education, until his eleventh year, in the common schools, and then, owing to the death of his father, he was compelled to depend on private study and self-teaching. Learning the shoemaker's trade through an apprenticeship of seven years, in Philadelphia, he was well prepared for self-support, and in 1838 he removed to Ohio, locating in Miamisburg, where he established himself in the boot and shoe business, employing from five to fifteen journeymen. This business he continued until 1846, when he changed his occupation to that of a general commission and mercantile trade. Soon becoming one of the largest and most successful operators in his branch of commerce in the Miami valley, he took a leading part in the establishment, organization and development of all the prominent enterprises of Miamisburg. One of these was the private bank of H. Groby & Co., established in 1865, in which Mr. Shultz was interested from the time of its establishment until 1888. He was the principal projector of the Miami Valley Paper company, which, in connection with Dr. William H. Manning, he organized in 1871. With this latter enterprise he was connected until 1889. From 185310 1870 he was engaged extensively in dealing in leaf tobacco, and did much to encourage the growth of this important staple product of the state of Ohio. The Miami valley is one of the noted tobacco growing regions of the state, comprising about 7,500 square miles, and the average yield of its best soils reaching as high as 1,800 pounds per acre.

Mr. Shultz was married July 23, 1840, to Sarah Beck, daughter of Conrad and Mary (Anspaugh) Beck, of Miamisburg, and to this marriage there were born three children, as follows: Mary A. (Mrs. Dr. William H. Manning), Amanda M. (Mrs. A. T. Whittich), and Sarah Aletta (Mrs. H. C. Schuberth).  In religion Mr. Schultz is of the Lutheran faith, and fraternally he belongs to the Masons, Odd Fellows and Knights of Pythias.   He is a royal arch Mason and6 a Knight Templar, and was a charter member of Marion lodge, No. 18, I. 0. 0. F., of Miamisburg, which was organized in 1843. As a republican Mr. Shultz has held every office but one, that of township clerk, in the gift of Miami township and Miamisburg. Previous to the organization of the republican party he was a whig, but since that time has always been a republican.  In 1875 he was elected to the legislature, but was not a candidate for re-election.  In 1873 he was a member of the convention that revised the state constitution, which, upon being submitted to the people, was rejected.  In October, 1880, he was elected to congress from the Fourth district, which position he filled with credit to himself and to the satisfaction to his constituents. Elected commissioner of Montgomery county in 1859, he served three years. In 1881 he was one of the organizers of the Lima Car works, was a stockholder and served as vice-president until he sold his interest.

Mr. Shultz is a gentleman of sound and shrewd business judgment, and few are possessed of a more genial disposition or endowed with so happy a faculty of winning friends. Of quick perception, he reads at a glance the character and disposition of those with whom he comes in contact; a ready conversationalist, he is thoroughly at home in any discussion. Free, unaffected and courteous in manner, he is still dignified and earnest and is a representative man of the better class. He is fully alive to the practical everyday affairs of life, and is now enjoying the fruits of his own industry, which he has accumulated through half a century's exercise of good business tact and discerning and comprehensive survey of the tendencies of commercial movements and the necessities of his fellow-men. In 1889 he was appointed by President Harrison postmaster at Miamisburg, and filled the office in a most capable manner for tour years and five months, retiring on the appointment of his successor in 1894.

 

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