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Compiled, transcribed & contributed by Georgeann McClure and Sue Rekkas
The Davenport Democrat, July 17,1924, page 38.
"This illustration was made from an old oil painting in the possession of the Academy of Sciences.  It depicts the little frontier settlement on the banks of the Mississippi about the time "The Daily Iowa State Democrat" was founded here in 1855. Who painted the original is not known.  The importance of steam boating is shown by the many craft on the river."
Daily Gazette, October 27, 1879, page 4.
Sad and Fatal Accident
On the steamer Minnesota which arrived in port Saturday morning, was brought the dead body of its engineer, a young man in his twenty-third year -- Abner Bagley, of Ripley County, Ind. Undertaker Boles was summoned by Captain Bryson, and the corpse given to his care for burial in Oakdale cemetery, the Northern Line Company providing for the expenses. Bagley was a splendid looking young fellow, six feet high and broad shouldered, and very popular with the boat’s crew, and with men along the river wherever known. His death was by accident, and almost instantaneous. While the boat was approaching Keithsburg, Friday evening, he went back to oil the pitman, which in some way struck him back of the ear causing almost instant death. While the boat lay at Keithsburg the coroner was summoned, a jury impaneled, and an inquest held, resulting in a verdict of accidental death. Bagley’s father, who was an engineer on the Golden Rule, an Ohio River steamer, died last summer of yellow fever, leaving his son as the only support of his mother and sisters. And now that support is suddenly taken away from them. Bagley was buried Saturday morning without any funeral exercises.
Trailways to Albany 2000 by Helen H. Hanson

"William and John Burns were the two engineers who brought the August to Albany and Clinton from Davenport, Iowa."
  William W. Burns
The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Sunday, February 16, 1913, page 7.
Wm. W. Burns One of Old Packet River Men, Was Ill Several Months
William W. Burns, a riverman of the early day and a resident of Davenport for 35 years, died at his home, 819 Brady Street at 4 o'clock, Friday afternoon. He had been in ill health for several months but was confined to his bed for but six weeks prior to his death.

The deceased was born August 16, 1843, in Pennsylvania, and came with his parents to Iowa at an early age. While yet a youth he worked with his father in packet service on the Mississippi River. He was taught the trade of river engineering by his father and during the Civil War was employed on the passenger steamers plying as far south as possible. As an engineer he became noted for his coolness and bravery in the face of danger. As a man, kindness and consideration for others won him friends. He was especially fond of children who returned the affection which he displayed for them. He was a member of the Modern Woodmen of America for 25 years.

The deceased is survived by a wife, two sons, and six grand-children. The sons are Harry and Isaac B. Burns of Albany, Illinois. The grandchildren are Deida, William D., Vetra, Cathyrn, Lillian and Bessie of Albany. The funeral services will be held from the late residence, 819 Brady, at o'clock, Monday afternoon. The services are to be private and it is requested that no flowers be sent. The remains will be cremated.
The Daily Times, February 15, 1913, page 7.
William W. Burns, a pioneer steamboat engineer, died at 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon at his home, 819 Street, aged 69 years. He had been ill for six weeks.

Mr. Burns was born August 16, 1843, and came to Iowa with his parents before the Civil War. His father being a river engineer, Mr. Burns learned the business and served his first years as an engineer on southern packets during the Civil war.

Mr. Burns is survived by his wife, two sons, Harry and Isaac B. Burns of Albany, Illinois, and six grandchildren. Private funeral services will be held at 2 o'clock Monday afternoon from the late home, with incineration at the Davenport crematorium. The family requests friends not to send flowers.
The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Tuesday, February 18, 2015
Burns Funeral
The funeral of William W. Burns was held yesterday afternoon at 2 o'clock from the home, 819 Brady Street, with incineration at the Davenport crematorium. Rev. W. H. Blancke officiated at the home and also at the crematorium, preaching a very eloquent sermon.

The Pallbearers were Frank Andrews, M. V. Von Kostrick, C. W. Schricker, John Bammer, Harvey Lyons and Albert Gibney.
(once lived in Davenport)
The Davenport Times, Aug. 29, 1901, Pg. 6
Capt. Dixon, One of the best Known river Men on the Upper river
A letter from Capt. M. M. Looney from St. Michaels, Alaska, announces the sudden death of Capt Decker Dixon, aged about 55, who was one of the best known steamboat pilots on the Mississippi.  But scant particulars were given.  The letter is dated Aug., 9 and says Capt. Dixon died the day previous.  At circle City, Alaska, Captain Dixon had eaten a hearty supper and seemingly was in the best of health, had laid down for a short nap.  About 10 o’clock in the evening he woke with intense internal pains and at 11:30 he died.  The body is now on its way back to Oakland, cal., where his family resides, and where internment will be made.

Complete and full particulars regarding the family life and death of Capt. HOMASDixon, are practically unobtainable upon short notice.  He was one of the early pilots on the Mississippi and had plied the river from head waters to mouth for many years and on many boats.  His home, the home of his family. was in Dubuque.  Ia., but it might be said that the home of the captain was in a pilot house upon the old father of Waters.
A Pilots Fate
Thomas Dixon suddenly summoned by the Grim Messenger -
His life on the river.
Sad news came to the wife, mother and sister of Thomas Dixon, the well-known river pilot of this city, yesterday morning.

It was the intelligence they least expected, as one week ago last Sunday he left this city to go up the river, and was then in usual health. Of his death conductor W. M. Shaddleger, of the Western Union Railroad, who reached Rock Island yesterday morning, gives us these particulars: Mr. Dixon boarded the train at Gordon's Ferry, the first station below Dubuque, near midnight Tuesday. He had a companion, his brother Dick, who took care of him, as Thomas complained very much of pain, groaned considerably and seemed to breathe with difficulty. When near Clinton, Dick was dosing, and Thomas arose and walked slowly toward the water closet. Just as he had his hand upon the door, Dick, who had been aroused, was by his side, when without word of warning, Thomas sank down and died in the arms of his brother. This was as the train pushed into Clinton. A doctor was called, but he pronounced Thomas beyond the reach of aid, though from what disease he died it is not known: probably apoplexy.

Thomas Dixon was born in Delaware County, O. in 1832 (?), and came to Davenport when 10 years of age. For the past 29 years(?) he has been on the river as mate or pilot, for several years past the latter. Last year he ran the wheel of the Maggie Reaney. His wife has been an invalid for some years. His mother Mrs. Elizabeth Dixon, and sister, Mrs. Druzzilla Hampton, live on the corner of Front and Rock Island streets. The remains, accompanied by Richard Dixon, reached the city last evening at 7 o’clock, and the funeral will be held from the place named this afternoon at 2 o’clock. Friends of the deceased are invited to be in attendance.
The Davenport Democrat, Thursday, March 24, 1881, page 1.

At nine o’clock Tuesday evening, George W. LeClaire, son of Captain David LeClaire, died at this father’s home after an illness of but thirty-six hours--that is, his illness was not considered serious until the commencement of the period named. He was taken with diarrhea about two weeks ago, but paid little attention to it, and it did not weaken him enough to cause his remaining at home but at 9 o’clock on the morning of Monday a vomiting and purging spell came upon him, and physicians were sent for--they pronounced his disease inflammation of the bowels. He experienced little relief save as anodynes were administrated, until eight o’clock Tuesday evening, and at nine o’clock he died.

Several persons have died in Moline and Rock Island of the same disease--and in Illinois it is known as winter cholera.

The deceased was born in Davenport, February 7, 1847, and so was thirty four years of age at the time of his death. He early adopted his father’s vocation, that of pilot, and for years was well known among the fraternity in the St. Louis, Davenport and St. Paul trade. He stood at the wheel of several of the large packets for more than ten years. He left the river in ‘78 and has lived in Davenport since that time. He was unmarried.

The time of funeral will be announced to-morrow.
 Daily Gazette, Saturday, March 26, 1881, page 4.
Announcement will hereafter be made of the time of the funeral of the late George LeClaire, who died of inflammation of the bowels Wednesday night. The remains were deposited in the vault at the cemetery yesterday.
Davenport Daily Gazette, Thursday Morning, December 25, 1884, page 3.
David N. LeClaire
The funeral of the late David N. LeClaire, will take place from the residence of his mother, Mrs. Sarah LeClaire, 915 Le Page street, to-morrow afternoon, Friday Dec. 26. Services will be held at the house. All friends of the family are respectively invited to attend.
The Davenport Democrat, January 7, 1902, page 4.

Researched by Sue Rekkas
Seen by Ice Cutters As It Floated Past Beneath Them-
-Not Identified and Hardly in Shape to be Recognized.
Ice cutters near the point of the island opposite the Glucose works were treated to a gruesome sight this morning when they saw the body of a man floating under the ice on which they were at work. They traced its course until it came up in a space of clear water from which the ice had been cut, and then it was secured, and ultimately turned over to the undertaking firm of Runge & Petersen while Coroner Lambach and Constable Holliday were notified.

Nothing had developed up to 2 o’clock this afternoon that threw any light on the identity of the dead man. He had apparently been in the water a long time, and the remains were badly swollen, the hair ground from the head by abrasion against the ice, the clothes covered with mud and slime, so that there was little chance of even a relative identifying the dead man. Arrangements were made for an inquest which will be held at 5 o’clock this afternoon.
Davenport Republican, Wednesday, January 8, 1902, page 8.

Corpse and Clothes May be Those of Stonecutter Who Boarded at the National Hotel in This City and Has not Been Seen for Six Weeks
--Postal Card in One Pocket.
The description of the body and clothes of the floater found yesterday morning by men cutting ice near the point of the island opposite the Glucose works, answers in all particulars that of Charles Oleson, a stone cutter formerly stopping at the National hotel in this city. He disappeared five or six weeks ago and has not been seen or heard of since. Dr. Lambach, the coroner, expresses the opinion the body found under the ice and removed to the Runge & Petersen undertaking rooms by Constable Holliday, who took charge of the case as soon as he arrived on the scene had been in the water for a month or a month and a half. This point of time since drowning is another in favor of the theory that the remains are those of the missing Oleson. Proprietor Drechsler of the National, was not able to identify the corpse, however, though he could not say the body was not that of his former boarder. The examination was made by lamp light and the coroner has arranged that some persons in the city who were better acquainted with Oleson than Mr. Drechsler was will visit the undertaking parlors this morning and endeavor to identify the clothes.

The inquest was held last evening at 5 o’clock, with Harry Hamann, Henry Hetzel and Henry Kuehl as the jurors. The verdict returned was that death had been the result of drowning in the Mississippi river. The only paper found in the pockets of the clothing was a postal card addressed to the postmaster at Burlington, Ia., and reading as follows:
“Give Billy Kelly my mail and oblige.”
The signature was difficult to make out and appeared to be either N. Oleson or N. Matson. The card was dated at Twentieth street, Rock Island. The coroner prepared the following detailed description of the body:
About 35 years of age, possibly a few years younger or a few years older; five feet 10 inches in height, red mustache, dark hair, laced shoes, with the soles well worn; dark corduroy pants, a soft shirt, with collar attached; a necktie, sack coat of clay worsted cloth, a pepper and salt vase, teeth sound in front, well preserved short and strong. In the pockets were found, besides the card already mentioned, two knives, a tooth brush and several buttons.
The Davenport Democrat, January 8, 1902, page 5.

Had Been on the Young Several Years, and Disappeared at Close of Last Season
--Identified by Clothes and Several Articles in His Pocket.
The remains of the man found in the river Tuesday morning were identified this morning as those of William Kelly, formerly second mate on the Steamer W. J. young, and connected with that boat for the past six years. A member of Young’s crew called at the Runge & Petersen undertaking rooms this morning, and found several things among the effects of that man that showed that he was none other than Kelly. In his pockets were keys that fitted the ice box of the Young and the freight house at Muscatine; and a pocket knife that had belonged to the caller and which he had traded to Kelly about a week before he saw him for the last time. His clothes were also familiar to the visitor.

How Kelly got into the river is not explained by the identification of his body. The last seen of him was at the time of about the last stop of the Young here this season. He came up into town and was seen by one of the crew on Front street and said that he would be down to the boat in a few minutes. He never showed up, and was not seen again, it seems, until his remains were found by his friend at the undertaker’s rooms.

It is understood that he came out here from the east, years ago. Whether he has any living relatives or not is not known.
The Davenport Times, Wednesday, January 8, 1902, page 4.

He Was Second Mate On The W. J. Young and Disappeared In November
The body of the floater found yesterday was positively identified this morning as that of William Kelley, formerly second mate on the W. J. Young. Kelley disappeared Sunday Nov. 10, and since then nothing had been heard from him. The body was identified by Schuyler Peck, driver for Brick Munro, and formerly deckhand on the W. J. Young. Identification was made by means of two keys and a roughly-scrawled note.
Peck's Story
"I was coming down Perry street this morning when Ed Thomas called me,” said Peck. “He called my attention to the story of the floater and said “I’ll bet that’s Billy Kelley,” so we went down to look at the body. I knew the face just as soon as I saw it. But the way we found out for sure, was two keys in his pockets. One was to the icebox on the Young, and the other was for the warehouse at Muscatine.” There were two knives in the pockets of the clothes and Thomas remembered one that Kelley had traded for. There was a note, too, signed by somebody named Maston or Madson. It was to the postmaster at Burlington and said, “Please give Billy Kelley my mail.”

“I’ve known Kelley ever since 1894 when we started working for Captain Blair,” said Peck. “He used to work two or three months at a time and then go off and we wouldn’t hear anything from him till he would turn up again. He was fond of having a good time, but he always saved a little money. He came out here from Buffalo, N. Y., and was about 30 years old. He was single and had no folks around here that anybody knows of. He may have had some folks in Buffalo. He always went back and worked there every winter and came back here in spring.

“Sunday, the tenth of November, he was paid off after dinner and he gave Charley Moore, the cook, $5. The Sunday before he had given him $5 too. He went up town and had a good time all day. That is the last anybody knew about him. Thomas thinks he came back to the boat pretty late at night and tried to walk up the plank, but fell off. He may have got caught under the barges down in front of the levee, but nobody knows. The reason nobody bothered about looking him up when he failed to show up next day was because he often disappeared, and as he had been paid off Captain Blair had nothing more to do with him. “The $10 that is coming to him, I suppose Moore has. He lives at New Boston.
Nobody Cared
The reason why Kelley was never hunted for after his disappearance, was as Peck says, because the men are paid off every Sunday after dinner and get no more rations till the next day at noon. They are allowed to sleep on the boat, but no account is taken of their going or coming unless they get noisy and the watch man has to put them off. As second mate, Kelley was little more than a common roustabout and as he was a greater drinker nobody cared when he failed to appear the next day.

Other people who remembered Kelley on the boat agree with Peck and Thomas that the body is that of the missing second mate. Peck and Thomas knew him better than anyone else as they worked with him off and on, for six years. And their reasons for thinking that Kelley may have gone back to his regular haunts in Buffalo was the cold weather and the near end of the season for the Young, which came a week later. Kelley was well-known about the Burlington levee and had more friends there than in Davenport.
George Rebuer
The Daily Leader, Thursday, February 27, 1896, page 5.
An Older River Man Speaks of the False Work Wreck.
The Superstructure of the present government bridge was erected in the winter of 1872-1873, just after the great Chicago fire. The ice had formed hard, heavy and early that winter and on it moving in the spring the false work put in place between the Iowa shore and the first abutment or pier was carried away, though without much damage to the bridge itself.

In conversation with Captain George Rebuer, an old riverman, this morning a Leader representative was told that after that disaster the superintendent caused large ice breakers to be placed on the east side of all the false work and securely anchored to the piers. These devices cut the floating ice much similar as the piers disintegrate it now, thus minimizing the pressure and protecting the bents and trestles supporting the bridge proper."Something like this," said he, "would have saved the bridge from the catastrophe of last Tuesday."
Photo by Sue Rekkas  
There is a great deal of truth in the remarks of Mr. Rebuer, but the Phoenix people were simply taken unawares. Had the ice not moved until today the bridge would have been so far completed as to be able to dispense with the false work altogether, and that was the main reason why the company did not resort to such measures for protection. Enough dynamite was at hand to counteract the effect of a move should any occur, but it was not thought necessary to use it as the false work was going to be removed entirely within 24 hours. Such a result of the ice break was not anticipated, and it only serves to show that human ingenuity and skill count for nothing when the gigantic forces of nature are involved on the other side.
The Davenport Daily Times, Thursday Evening, May 28, 1896, page 3.

Steamer Belcher Can Not Pass the Moline Bridge.
Capt. Rebuer attempted to make a trip up Rock River yesterday with the steamer Belcher and a coal barge after a load of that commodity. Rock River, however, is on a rampage at present and the fact was clearly demonstrated to Capt. Rebuer when the Moline bridge was reached. The hog chains on the barge that the little steamer had in tow were too high to allow the craft to pass under the bridge. This was an unlooked for state of affairs as the trouble was expected to come with the attempt of the steamer to pass under the span and preparations had been made to take off the pilot house and lower the smoke stacks. As the boat with that barge was useless in this case the trip was abandoned and with the steamer tied to the bank the captain and his crew boarded the street car and came home. Further operations are suspended until the river drops.
The Davenport Times, Tuesday, November 19, 1901, page 5.

Capt. Rebuer and Capt. Schricker Will Moor Them Along Levee.
Capt. George Rebuer, master of the Hennepin and the fleet which navigated the canal was seen this morning and stated that he had laid up his water craft for the winter. He will spend the closed season making necessary repairs. The fleet of barges will be moored on the levee west of Harrison street.

Capt. Schricker will lay up the Lone Star and barges also. The latter will occupy their usual anchorage in Fishertown.
Davenport Republican, Friday, December 18, 1903, page 8.

Identified With the Navigation of the Upper Mississippi River From The Early Day
Early yesterday morning occurred the death of George Rebuer one of the oldest as well as the best known citizens of Davenport and a man for many years closely identified with the navigation of the upper Mississippi river. His death was due to an illness of about four months during which time he had rapidly failed, growing weaker and weaker until his death finally ensued yesterday morning shortly after midnight.
Mr. Rebuer was born in Switzerland in 1834, coming to America at about the age of fifteen years. He settled in Davenport shortly after his arrival in this country taking up the occupation of a river man, gradually advancing in his profession until he obtained the position of captain and owner of a steamboat. He had been until the time of his death actively engaged in the boating business being the owner of the steamer
Hennepin, now in the sand and gravel business.

His reputation as a riverman and business man in general is well known over the upper part of the Mississippi, where he had operated over a career of many years.

He was, under the administration of Ernest Claussen, alderman from the Third ward, serving but one term because of the pressure of private business. As a member of the city council he was active in the making of many ordinances which were for the well government of the city, retiring with credit. He was at the time of his death sixty-nine years and three days of age, he having passed his sixty-ninth birthday but a short time previous to his passing away. He is survived by his wife, Sophia, and one son, who is at present out of the city, his whereabouts being unknown. He will be located and notified of his father's death. The funeral has not yet been announced.
The Davenport Democrat, December 18, 1903, page 6.

At his home, 712 West Third street, at 1 o'clock Thursday morning occurred the death of Captain George Rebuer, the master of the Hennepin, in the 69th year of his age. The deceased came to his death by reason of a dropsical aliment from which he had been suffering for some time. He was one of the oldest and most respected citizens of Davenport, and a captain well known upon the upper river. He served as alderman
of the Third ward in one city council during the years 1883-1884. The wife and one son, Rudolph Rebuer, survive.

The funeral will be held from the family home, 712 West Third street, on Sunday afternoon.
Davenport Republican, Tuesday, December 22, 1903, page 7.
Rebuer Funeral
The funeral of the late Captain Geo. Rebuer was held Sunday afternoon at 2 o'clock from his late home, 712 West Third Street, under the auspices of Scott and Hermann lodges of the I.O.O.F., of which society the deceased was a patriarch. Burial was made at Fairmount cemetery.
The Davenport Democrat and Leader, June 6, 1942, page 15.

Robert Rebuer, 67, 1416 Garden Avenue, retired river captain, died at 7:30 p. m. Sunday, in Mercy Hospital following an extended illness.

Born April 18, 11875, in Davenport, he was captain of a river boat for the Streckfus lines until retiring in 1917. In 1916 he was married in this city to Mary Murray, who survives.

Mr. Rebuer was of Lutheran faith and a member of the Eagles.

Funeral services have been set for 2 p.m. Wednesday in the Horrigan home for funeral. Burial will be in Fairmount cemetery.
Robert Rebuer, former river boat captain and lifelong resident of Davenport, died in Mercy Hospital at 7:30 p.m. Sunday following an extended illness.

Born here on April 19, 1875, Mr. Rebuer was married to Mary Murray in Davenport in 1916. He had received his training in piloting from his father, George Rebuer who was also a river captain. He had been employed by the Streckfus lines until his retirement in 1917.

Mr. Rebuer was of Lutheran faith and was a member of the Davenport Aerie, Fraternal Order of Eagles.
He is survived by his wife.

The body was taken to the Horrigan home for funerals where funeral services will be held Wednesday at 2 p.m. Burial will be in Fairmount cemetery.
The Daily Times, Thursday, June 11, 1942, page 8.

Funeral services for Robert Rebuer were held at 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Horrigan home for funerals, with C. U. Nolan, president of the Davenport Aerie No. 235, Fraternal Order of Eagles, in charge.

The pallbearers were Joseph McKeone, Hanes Voss, William Dunker, Frank Boy, John P. Knuth and C. U. Nolan.
The Davenport Democrat and Leader, June 11, 1942, page 15.
Funeral services for Robert Rebuer, former river boat captain who died Sunday, were held from the Horrigan home for funerals at 2 p.m. Wednesday. C. U. Nolan, president of the Davenport Aerie No. 235 Fraternal Order of Eagles was in charge. Internment was at Fairmount cemetery.  Bearers were Joseph McKeone, Hans Voss, William Dunker, Frank Boy, John P. Knuth and C. U. Nolan.
Davenport Republican, Friday, March 22, 1901, page 8.

Steamer Lone Star Inaugurates the Season of 1901.
Yesterday day morning the steamer Lone Star steamed up the Mississippi from the South Rock Island ice harbor and took the houseboat of the Sunfish Lake Club, which was staked out near Cook’s point, in tow, and anchored her on the shore off Long Island. Thus Captain Schricker’s boat is the first of the season to use the waters of the river at this point. The Sunfish Lake Club will enjoy several days in going after ducks and other game.
The Davenport Times, November 19, 1901, page 5.

Capt. Rebuer and Capt. Schricker Will Moor Them Along Levee.
Capt. George Rebuer, master of the Hennepin and the fleet which navigates the canal was seen this morning and stated that he had laid up his water craft for the winter. He will spend the closed season making necessary repairs. The fleet of barges will be moored on the levee west of Harrison street.
Capt. C. W. Schricker will lay up the Lone Star and barges also. The latter will occupy their usual anchorage in Fishertown.
The Democrat and Leader, Sunday Morning, March 23, 1930, page 11.

C.W. Schricker Succumbs Saturday Following Month’s Illness.
Christian W. Schricker

23 Jun 1858
22 Mar 1830

Fairmount Cemetery
Davenport, Iowa
Photo by Sue Rekkas  
Capt. C. W. Schricker, 2027 Rockingham Road, well known former river captain on the Mississippi and sand and gravel dealer, died at 7:15, a.m. Saturday at his home. Death terminated an illness of four week’s duration.

Capt. Schricker was born in St. Louis, June 28, 1859 and came to Davenport with his parents when five years old, residing here since. He was married to Miss Fredericka Kemmeyer.

For many years Mr. Schricker captained steamboats from the timber regions in the north to Davenport. He was later in the sand and gravel business for 20 years, retiring five years ago. For the past 45 years he was a member of Fraternal lodge, No. 221, A. F. & A. M. of Davenport.

Surviving besides the widow are one son, Elmer C. of Davenport; three brothers and three sisters, J. C. Schricker, George and Arthur Hoffman: Mrs. Henrietta Hard, Mrs. Bertha Jansen and Mrs. Tillie Meier, all of Davenport; and four grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held at 6:30 p. m. Monday at the Runge chapel with burial in Fairmount cemetery.
The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Tuesday Evening, March 25, 1930, page 17.

The Schricker Funeral
Funeral services for Capt. C. W. Schricker were held at 3:30 p. m. Monday at the Runge Chapel with the Rev. M. A. Getzendaner officiating. Services were in charge of Fraternal lodge, No. 221, A. F. & A. M.  Burial was made in Fairmount cemetery.  Pallbearers were John Volkens, Emil Rohwedder, Herman Rohlfs, Charles Tank, Dr. Ed Strohbehn, and Dick Heeschen.
1880 United States Census, Davenport, Scott, Iowa.
Schroeder John S.,  Male,  46,  Holstein,  Steamboat Man
The Davenport Democrat, July 18, 1902, page 5.
Exiled From the Fatherland in Quebec in 1854, and Successfully Ran the Civil War Blockade
-- His Career in Davenport and Vicinity.
At 6:30 o’clock this morning at John Ahren’s home, upon the Washington Garden property, occurred the death of John Schroeder, one of the best known of the Schleswig-Holstein contingent in the city.

John Schroeder was never married. He came from his native town Beldorf, in Holstein, Germany, in 1854, where he was born on Nov. 27, 1832, then being 70 years old at the time of his death. When he left the Fatherland he came by sailing vessel to the Canadian port of Quebec, and a year later came to Davenport.
He began the avocation of a raftsman, which he continued until the year 1876, when he entered into partnership with Captain George Rebuer, in the Sand and Gravel company, under the name of Rebuer, Goos and Schroeder. He continued in this business for five years, quitting it in 1881 to take up an interest in the Montpelier tile company. For the last ten years he has been a boarder at the hostelry of John Ahrens, first at the Deutsches Gast house on Second and Scott streets, and afterwards at Washington Garden, where he died. Prior to that time he boarded at the St. Louis house.

Mr. Schroeder was always a great huntsman. The Wisconsin woods were as familiar to him as were the streets of Davenport. He accumulated a fortune during his career, which is variously estimated at between $20,000 and $30,000.

He is survived by no direct heirs, the children of deceased sisters, nieces and nephews will inherit his estate. These are Claus and Henry Jordon of Keystone in Benton county, Iowa, Mrs. Louis Hinz of Walcott, and Mrs. Janus of this city.

In 1857 Mr. Schroeder affiliated with Scott Lodge, No 37, I. O. O. F. under whose auspices the funeral will be held Saturday afternoon at 2 o’clock from the Washington Garden, Gustav Donald officiating. The remains will be incinerated.

In the early 90’s, Mr. Schroeder accompanied by Julius Goos, were in New Orleans where they witnessed the execution of the five Italians, members of the Mafia order, for the murder of Chief Hennessey. During the strenuous days of the Civil War Mr. Schroeder successfully ran the Mississippi river blockade bringing down provisions to the troops and returning with contraband cotton. In 1889 Chief Piening accompanied him to the South upon one of his many hunting expeditions. During the recent Indian Outbreak in the North Mr. Schroeder figured prominently, but escaped with his life. Death occurred after a long period of illness.

The deceased was over 6 feet in stature in his stocking feet, and weighted about 280 pounds. He was remarkable for his physical strength and endurance. Until cancer of the stomach called a halt in his career, he was as good as four ordinary men, where strength and weight were required. He left a collection of trophies which would stock an ordinary museum.
Fairmount Crematorium Records Year 1902
# Name Age Place of Death Cause of Death Death Date Attending Physician
184 John Schroeder 69y 6m 21d City (Fairmount) Carcinoma of esophagus 18 Jul 1902 Dr. Strohbelm
  Name of Undertaker Date of Incineration    
  Hartwig 19 Jul 1902    
Fairmount Cemetery WPA Burial Records
Name Birth Date Death Date
Johann Schroeder 1832 18 Jul 1902

Probate of the will of John Schroeder,
Application for Order appointing Trustee,
and Directing Erection of Monument.
III. “It is my will and desire to set apart Six Hundred (600.00) dollars to cover funeral expenses and granite monument, and a small burial place at the Fairmount cemetery.

It is my further Will and desire that on this monument be engraved the following:-
“The three rings of the Old Fellows:-
Born at
Beldorf, Holstein, Nov. 27th, 1832”,
Also the date of death.
I further desire that my ashes be put in an urn and placed and sealed up in the monument, and that Hans Nissen be the conductor of my funeral.”

The undersigned further shows to the court that it has procured a lot costing One Hundred (100.00) dollars, from the Fairmount Cemetery Association, being Lot No. 119, in Block Five (5) on the plat of said Cemetery, for the purpose of erecting thereon a granite monument, containing the urn holding the ashes of deceased. That said Will fails to provide, or name, any person to whom the deed to such cemetery lot may be executed as grantee. That the said deceased had no relatives in this country, his only relatives being residents of the Empire of Germany in Europe. That it is necessary and proper that some person should be named to whom the deed to such cemetery lot may be executed in trust for the heirs of said deceased.

This document goes on to state that Louis Block, attorney for The German Trust Company was appointed as the trustee to take the title to the cemetery lot for the heirs of John Schroeder deceased. This was done on the 21st day of October 1902.

However when the Author tired to find the monument to obtain a picture of same for this record none could be found or listed in the burial records of Fairmount cemetery that were on Microfilm in the Special Collections department of the Davenport, Iowa Library.
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