Bio: Koehler, Gustav F. (Commemorative Bio - 1895)

Poster: Crystal Wendt


Gustav F. Koehler

Gustav F. Koehler who is a German by birth, having been born in Prussia, April 19, 1854; is a son of Gotthilf Koehler, who was also a native of the Fatherland, born in 1817. The father is one of the five children, three of whom were August, Charles and Hulda. The parents died in Germany. In that county Gotthilf Koehler first served as a coachman, then acted as valet for a lord and afterward became a shepherd. At the age of twenty-six he was married to Johanna Sage, and to them were born Wilhelmina, Herman, August, Frank, Gustav F., and George, three of whom, Frank, August and Gustav F., are living. The family decided to make America their future home, so in 1857, crossed the Atlantic, came direct to Wisconsin, and located on a farm near Bloomfield, Waushara County. Two years later they removed to Marathon County, Wis., where the mother died in April, 1861. The father was again married, this time to Henrietta Tews, and they became the parents of three children. His wife died in 1865, and later he wedded Amelia Tews, and to them have been born seven children who are yet living Johonas, Amelia, Hulda, Herman, Bertha, Frederick and Walter. They now make their home on a farm near Merrill, Wis. For three years the father served as a soldier in the Germany Army, and since coming to this country has ever been a loyal and worthy citizen.

Gustav F. Koehler was but three years old on his arrival in the United States and here his early life was passed in a way similar to the average boy in those days, being reared to agricultural pursuits on the home far. His educational advantages were limited, he being allowed to attend school only a few months during the year, until at the age of seventeen. He then went to Weyauwega, Waupaca Co., Wis., where he remained for a year and a half, when he removed to Wausau, there working for about the same length of time. On his arrival in Merrill, which was then known by the name of Jennie, he formed a partnership with Henry Beahmann and opened a blacksmith shop in the fall of 1874. Lincoln County officers being elected that fall. After two years his former business connection was dissolved, and Mr. Koehler formed a partnership with John T. Adams, which continued for about three years, when Mr. Adams withdrew from the firm. Our subject has since been in business alone which he has successfully conducted, carrying it on  longer than any other blacksmith of the place, and has now an excellent trade.

Mr. Koehler was united in marriage on June 9, 1878, with Wilhelmina Runge (the ceremony having taken place in Oshkosh, Wis.); she is a native of Germany, where she was born November 20th, 1856, a daughter of Joachine and Charlotte (Genrich) Runge, who were the parents of eleven children, namely: Matilda, Frederick, Carl, Amelia, Justina, Ferdinandina, Albert A., Wilhelmina, who are still living; and three who are dead. The parents came to America bout 1864, locating near Oshkosh, where the father engaged in shoe-making and there died in February, 1879. The mother died in November, 1891. To the subject of his sketch and wife have been born nine children, namely: Herman, Walter, Agnes, Paul, George, Martha, Ernest, Gustav, and Kurt.

In politics Mr. Koehler is a stanch supporter of the Republican Party, taking an active interest in its success. He served as alderman of the Third War of Merrill for two years. He is president of the council, and though not a politician takes an active part in all elections. In religious belief he is a Lutheran, holding membership with that denomination. He is a self-made man, universally respected and one whose word is as good as his bond.

---Source: Commemorative Biographical Record of the Upper Wisconsin Counties of Waupaca, Portage, Wood, Marathon, Lincoln, Oneida, Vilas, Langlade and Shawano. publ. 1895 by J. H. Beers & Co., Chicago 1110 pages, illustrated; Page 244-245



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