Bio: Schwan, Ernest (1846 - ?)

Contact: on Fri, 16 Feb 2001




----Source: 1918 History of Clark Co., WI, by Franklyn, Curtiss-Wedge

Ernest Schwan

ERNEST SCHWAN, formerly a pioneer farmer of Loyal Township, but now living retired in the village of Loyal, is a well known and highly respected citizen in this part of the county. He was born in West Prussia, Feb. 10, 1846, son of Gottlieb and Anna (Kremien) Schwan, his father being a Farmer, and was one of five children-Ernest, Gottlieb, William, Carolina and August. He was educated in Germany, working on his parents' farm in his spare time, and remaining in his native land until 1869. He then came alone to the United States, locating in Cream Lake County, Wis., where he found his first employment with an Irish farmer, who hired him for $26.00 a month. After spending three days with this farmer, however, he felt dissatisfied, as he was unable to speak English and neither the farmer nor anyone in the vicinity could speak German, so he started to leave and go elsewhere, but the farmer came after him and persuaded him to remain. He stayed there three years and then went to Appleton, Wis., where he hired out as a lumbering jack, going into the woods and in the spring working on the drive. While on this latter work he took a trip on a raft from ten miles above Wausau, Wis., to St. Louis, the trip occupying four weeks, for which he received $100.

On his return he settled in Hartford, Wis., and was there married, Nov. 10, 1872, to Henriette Pobanz, who was born in Pommern, Germany, June 29, 1851, her father, Carl, being a farmer. She had come to the United States with her brother, Julius. After his marriage Mr. Schwan remained in Hartford about a year, working in a hat factory. He and his wife then came to Loyal, Clark County, and bought eighty acres of timber land in Loyal Township, section 2, of which tract about three acres were cleared. There was also a small shack standing on the place which had been erected by the previous owner, and into this he and his wife moved. They had an axe and a cow, but no funds, and he was obliged to work two years in the woods in order to live, so during that time made little progress in improving his place.

After that, however, he began to improve his property and gradually developed it into a good farm, raising cattle and horses, besides the usual crops. Prosperity came in time and he was at last able to build a twelve room brick house and a frame basement barn, measuring 40 by 72 feet, and added to his land until he owned 120 acres. In the early days like an or most of the pioneers, he had to take long walks for supplies, going to Unity, Spencer and Loyal, and returning with them on his back. On that farm he spent thirty-nine years, during which time he cleared seventy acres of his land. He was also prominent in local affairs, serving as school treasurer of Loyal township for thirty-two years and was a member of the township board two years. He also helped to build the first German Lutheran Church in that township, it being constructed of logs.

In 1913 Mr. Schwan retired from farming and took up his residence in the village of Loyal, where he now makes his home. He and his wife have had seven children, of whom the following is a brief record: Ella is the wife of Adolph Grob, and resides at Pine River, Wis. She has two children--Norma and Margaret. Otto, who married Martha Luther, resides in Beaver Township, and has five children-Ernest, Harold, Adeline, Esther and Ronald. Martha is the wife of Robert Grob, of Pine River, and has two children--Harley and Dorothy. Charles was killed on the railroad in Portola, Cal. Louis resides in Chicago. Marie is now Mrs. Harry Voss, of Spokeville, Wis., and has two children-Zelma and Herbert. Esther, the seventh child, is married to W. E. Meyer. They reside at Manitowoc, Wis.



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