Wednesday, June 20, 2012


Elma Cook Biehn and Frank Biehn
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Hazel Biehn in 1917
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Hazel Biehn (Perkins) in 1966
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Roy and Alan Biehn
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch) 

Elliott Cook and Caroline Burgess Cook
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch) 

The Biehn Family
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Alan Elliott and Roy F. Biehn, sons of Frank Joseph Biehn and Alma Irene Cook Biehn
Alan Elliott Biehn (1901-1972)
Roy Frank Biehn (1904-1988)
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Roy Biehn
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Roy Biehn
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)


Alan, Hazel, Roy Biehn
(Source:  Photo and caption courtesy of Carolyn Biehn Caflisch)

Frances Heidersdorf and Henry Biehn wedding photo
(Source: submitted by Beth Christoffel 10-17-2010 on family site)

(Note:  Although the Biehn family are pioneers of Paris Township, Kenosha County, this biography is added for those researching the Heidersdorf and Myers families of Somers Township)

Among the well-to-do farmers and stock raisers of Paris Township is Henry Biehn, who owns and operates a valuable farm of eighty acres.  A native of Kenosha County, he was born in Paris Township, on the 1st of November, 1858, and is a son of Henry and Margaret (Myers) Biehn, both natives of Germany, the former born in 1825 and the latter in March, 1836.  The father served for two years in the German army and then came to the United States, as he had heard much concerning the unusually good opportunities offered the young men in this country.

He located in Kenosha County and for several years worked as a farm hand but following his marriage bought eighty acres of land, which he cleared and brought under cultivation as soon as possible.  he built a substantial residence and also erected barns and other buildings and made many improvements upon his farm.  After our subject was married the father bought 120 of land in another part of Paris Township and took up his residence there, where he passed his remaining days, dying in November, 1892.  He was a member of the German Lutheran Church and in all relations of life sought to follow the teachings of Christianity.  In politics, he was a Democrat and held a number of offices, service as Town Chairman, and Assessor of his township.  He was well informed and public-spirited and supported all movements seeking the general welfare.  He had a wide acquaintance throughout the county and was highly respected.  His father,  William Biehn, passed his entire life in the fatherland and gave his attention to farming.

Henry Biehn, Sr., was married in Kenosha County to Miss Margaret Myers, a daughter of George Myers, an early settler of Paris Township, and to this union were born 11 children, of whom nine survive, namely:  George, who is engaged in farming and fruit raising in the State of Washington; Henry; Carrie, the wife of C.E. Heidersdorf, who is foreman in the Belle City shops in Racine; Jacob, a real estate dealer of Milwaukee; Mary, the wife of John Adams, secretary of the YMCA at Fond du Lac; Maggie, who married Otto Schuetz, a farmer of Racine County; Frank, who is conducting a meat market and grocery in Union Grove; Emma, the wife of George Kruescher, a farmer of Paris Township; and John, who is a contractor living in Tacoma, Washington.

Henry Biehn, of this review, attended the district schools in his boyhood and youth and also early became familiar with agricultural work.  After putting aside his textbooks he devoted his entire time to assisting his father until his marriage, which occurred in 1882, when he began farming independently.  In 1888 he purchased the old homestead farm of 80 acres of rich land in Paris Township and he has since tiled it, thus adding to its value.  He has made many other improvements upon the place and takes justifiable pride in keeping everything in a good condition.  He does general farming but gives special attention to the raising of thoroughbred Shropshire sheep.
Mr. Biehn was married in 1882 to Miss Fannie Heidersdorf, a daughter of Christian and Margaret (Meyers) Heidersdorf, early settlers of Somers Township.  Her father is deceased, but her mother is still living at the age of 80 years.  Mr. and Mrs. Biehn have two children:  Camilla, the wife of Charles Fonk of Paris Township; and Howard, at home.
(Source:  City and County of Kenosha Record of Settlement by Frank H. Lyman, S.J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1916)

Oakwood Cemetery Burials, Somers

Oakwood Cemetery, Somers, Wisconsin
(Source: Photo Courtesy of Larry & Linda Kopet, USGenWebArchivesProjectWisconsin)

Oakwood Cemetery, Somers, Wisconsin
(Source: Photo Courtesy of Larry & Linda Kopet, USGenWebArchivesProjectWisconsin)

Cook - Biehn Marriage
"On Wednesday November 2, Miss Alma Cook, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Elliott Cook was united in marriage to Frank Biehn by the Rev. A.M. Sanford of the Rescue Mission, Milwaukee in the presence of a hundred invited guests.  The bride was attended by her sister, Mabel.   The bride has been a successful teacher in Kenosha County; the groom a prosperous farmer and proprietor of the Star Creamery.  They will take a brief wedding trip to Madison.  They will make their home in Paris Township."
(Source:  Racine Journal Nov 9, 1898)

Oakwood Cemetery, Somers, Wisconsin
(Source: Photo Courtesy of Larry & Linda Kopet, USGenWebArchivesProjectWisconsin)

Additional Information
 Some members of the Biehn family are buried at Sylvania Cemetery in Yorkville Township, Racine County.
1.  Heinrich (Henry) Biehn, Sr. was born on December 5, 1827 in Ketzenbach, Rheinbaum, Germany.
2.  He served two years in the German army before coming to America in April of 1851.
3.  Margaret Myers was born March 11, 1836 and she died May 13, 1897.
4.  Henry died November 9, 1895 in Paris Township.
5.  Caroline (Carrie) Biehn was born May 4, 1861.
6.  Jacob Biehn was born April 5, 1863.
7.  John Biehn was born March 3, 1867.
8.  Mary Elizabeth Biehn was born June 17, 1869.
9.  Frank Joseph Biehn was born October 4, 1871.
10.  Margaret Biehn was born January 22, 1873.  She married Otto Schultz June 5, 1895 at Emanuel Lutheran Church in Paris Township.
11.  Emma A. Biehn was born April 17, 1875.  She married George Kreuscher May 25, 1893 at Emanuel Lutheran Church in Paris Township.
(Source:  Sylvania Cemetery records, copyright 1991, Mary Ann Culshaw Falk, and the Sylvania Cemetery Board of Trustees)

Biehn Family "In the News" in Somers
"John W.  Fink sold the east 113 acres of his farm with the buildings to Jacob Biehn.  Mr. Fink retains the west 40 acres."
(Source:  Racine Daily Aug. 16, 1899)

"Mr. and Mrs. George Biehn and family, formerly of Somers, but who have spent a number of years in the State of Washington, arrived in Somers last week and will make Racine their future home."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Mar. 1, 1898)

"Jacob Biehn is out with a new Champion binder."
(Source:  Racine Daily July 31, 1900)

"Jacob Biehn has recovered from his late illness and is able to be out again."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Feb 6, 1900)

"Mr. and Mrs. Frank Biehn spent Thursday at the Pet Stock Show in Chicago and visited with Mr. and Mrs. L.R. Fink at Forest Glen, on their return."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Jan. 29, 1900)

"Somers Mutual Fire Insurance Co. was organized Sept 12, 1873 and commenced business on that date.  Amount of insured in force on Dec. 31, 1899 was $582,355.  Officers elected for year 1900 are:  President, Samuel S. Strong; Secretary Isaac T. Bishop; and Treasurer Jacob Biehn."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Jan. 11, 1900)

"Mr. Jacob Biehn put up a windmill last week for pumping water."
(Source:  Racine Journal Jan 13, 1904)

"Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Biehn placed a new piano in their home Friday afternoon."
(Source:  Mar 21, 1904)

"William E. Tucker, of Sylvania, has sold his two creameries located at Kellogg's Corners and Union Grove, to Frank Biehn, former owner of the Star Creamery and Paris Corners Creamery.  Mr. Biehn will take possession about Aug. 1.  The price paid for the property is said to be $7,000.  Those creameries are admitted to be the finest in the county and the butter supply is taken exclusively by Racine parties.  Mr. Biehn retains the services of the present butter makers."
(Source:  Racine Journal July 24, 1903)

"A doctor was called to attend a very sick horse for Jacob Biehn last week.  The animal has about recovered."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Dec. 26, 1901)

"Mrs. Jacob Biehn was taken to the Sanitarium in Kenosha last week."
(Source:  Racine Weekly March 29, 1904)

"Mrs. Jacob Biehn who lies very low with tuberculosis of the bowels and stomach, was removed to St. Mary's Hospital in Racine."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Aug. 23, 1904)

"Mr. Jacob Biehn will have an auction on Friday this week, November 23."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Nov. 20, 1906)

"Mr. Jacob Biehn is unloading brick at Somers for the foundation of his new barn.  Mr. Biehn moved into his new home Monday afternoon."
(Source:  Racine Weekly Nov 30, 1907)

"Mrs. Louisa Shenkenberg, formerly of Milwaukee and Mr. Jacob Biehn of the Town of Somers were united in marriage at 2 o'clock on Saturday afternoon in the presence of a few relatives and friends.  The Rev. Williams of the Presbyterian Church performed the ceremony.  Mr. and Mrs. Biehn will reside in Somers where they have built a fine residence."
(Source:  Racine Weekly, Nov 13, 1907)

"The creamery station in the Town of Paris just south of Union Grove, belonging to Frank Biehn, was destroyed by fire last night at about eight o'clock causing a loss of about $2,000.  The station was in charge of Mike Perry, who discovered the fire and gave the alarm, but as there was no protection and the fire had gained a headway there was nothing to do but watch it burn.  The station was used by Mr. Biehn for receiving milk from the farmers, and the cream was separated and sent to the Union Grove creamery to be manufactured into butter.  Mr. Biehn was called to the place and will doubtless soon make arrangements for another station there.  There was some insurance on the building."
(Source:  Racine Weekly, Apr. 9, 1907)

"One of the notable weddings of the summer in southern Wisconsin will be the marriage of Miss Mary Biehn, only daughter of Mrs. Margaret Biehn of the Town of Somers, and John W. Adams, general secretary of the Kenosha branch of the Young Men's Christian Association.  The wedding will take place on next Wednesday afternoon, July 9.  More than a hundred guests will be present at the wedding, the guests including many well known Y.M.C.A. men from all parts of the state.  Mr. and Mrs. Adams will go west for a wedding trip and will spend their honeymoon in the shadow of Pike's Peak.  The groom is one of the best known Y.M.C.A. workers.  He was for some time superintendent of the Y.M.C.A. at Ravenswood, Illinois but when new life was given to the Kenosha Association, Mr. Adams came to Kenosha to accept the position of general secretary here.  Through his influence a splendid $25,000 building was built and new interest was aroused in the work of the the Association in Kenosha until at the present time the Association is the third largest in Wisconsin."
(Source:  Racine Weekly, July 8, 1902)

"Gertrude and Dorothy Biehn, daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Biehn of Somers, Kenosha County, who disappeared from their home on Monday night, were found in Racine last night and they were not kidnapped from their home.  Gertrude was at the home of O. Parker, 2815 Washington Avenue and Dorothy at the residence of L.K. Sears, 1715 Washington Avenue, where they had secured positions as servants.  After reading in the local papers of the disappearance of the Biehn girls, Messrs. Parker and Sears became suspicious of the two strange girls in their homes and at once communicated with Attorney Peter J. Myers, uncle of the two missing girls, and it was not long before the identity of the girls was established.  Mr. Myers at once notified the parents of the girls where they could be found and the story of kidnapping was exploded.
The two girls made a statement that they believed they were worked too hard on the farm and that disagreements often prevailed between them and their stepmother.  Believing that they could better themselves, the girls decided to leave home and seek to improve their conditions.  Plans were laid for the departure, unknown to their parents and successfully carried out.
On Monday afternoon they packed what clothing they could in two grips.  Early in the evening they entered their rooms.  Waiting until their father and mother were asleep they quietly got out of the house, intending to get the last electric car into Racine, but missed it.  The walked to a brick yard and found the watchman, a colored man, and asked if they could not remain in his shack until morning, explaining that they were going to Racine and missed the car.  Consent was readily given the girls.
When daylight came the girls, appearing to be well supplied with money, offered to pay the colored man for his kindness, but he refused to received pay.  Catching the first electric car north the girls reached Racine early Tuesday morning.  Immediately they searched for employment and were engaged at the Parker and Sears homes, where servants were desired, given fictitious names.  Then came the publication of the disappearance and possible kidnapping and the notification to the uncle Peter J. Myers.  The girls state that they got away from home alone, that no persons assisted them and that there was no man and carriage in the deal at all.  It was simply dissatisfaction at home and a determination to leave.  They are still at the Parker and Sears homes.  Whether the parents will take them home remains to be seen."
(Source:  Racine Journal, Aug. 25, 1908)

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