Ferdinand Becker

Germany has furnished her full quota of valuable citizens to Iowa, among the number being Ferdinand Becker of Butler
county, formerly closely identified with agricultural interests, but now living retired in the enjoyment of a well earned rest. He was born in Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Germany, November 30, 1837, and is a son of Johann and Wilhemina (Koch) Becker. The mother died when her son Ferdinand was but a year old. The father died in Germany, where he had learned and followed the tailor's trade, making it his life work. He was twice married and had nine children by his first wife, but Ferdinand Becker was the only child of the second marriage.

Public schools of his native country furnished Ferdinand Becker his educational opportunities. He remained in the fatherland until nineteen years of age, and then, attracted by the reports which he had heard concerning the opportunities and advantages of the new world, he came to America in 1857, settling first at Guttenberg, Clayton county, Iowa, where he began working by the year as a farm hand, receiving one hundred and thirty-three
dollars per annum during the two years spent in that way. He afterwartl operated a threshing machine for about seven seasons and through the remainder of the year engaged in farming. In 1862 he went to South Dakota and secured a claim, but after working there for a short time with oxen he returned to Iowa. In 1866 he came to Butler county, settling five miles northeast of Clarksville in Butler township, where he purchased eighty acres of land and added thereto from time to time until he had one hundred and sixty acres. Year after year he carefully tilled his fields and harvested his crops until he retired to Clarksville about seven years ago. He still owns the farm, which is a well improved tract of
prairie land and which returns to him a gratifying annual income.

On the 25tli of March, 1863, Mr. Becker was united in marriage to Miss Louisa Buchholz, who was born in Hanover, Germany, August 30, 1844, a daughter of Henry and Caroline (Kalla) Buchholz, and went to Clinton county, Iowa, in 1854, with her mother.

Her father died in New York soon after his arrival on this side of the water, but the mother passed away in Butler county. Mr. and Mrs. Becker have become the parents of nine children : William, who is living on his father's farm in Butler township; Caroline, the wife of Herman Schmadeke ; Louise, who died at the age of fifteen months ; Augusta, who is the wife of F. W. Meyer and makes her home with her father ; Bertha, the wife of F. Fahshold of North Dakota ; Anna, the wife of Henry Miller of Clarksville ; Gesina, the deceased wife of Ed Klinemeyer ; Ferdinand of North
Dakota; and Rosa, the wife of Henry Bushing of North Dakota.

The parents are both members of the Lutheran church, loyal to its teachings, and they are today among the most respected and venerated of the old couples of Clarksville. Mr. Becker has passed the seventy-sixth milestone on life's journey and his record proves what may be accomplished in this land, where opportunity is not hampered by caste or class, but where the road to usefulness and success is open to all.