Bio: Aschbrenner, Frederick (Family History - 1932)
Surnames: Aschbrenner, Kopplin, Fehlhaber, Haehlke, Anklam, Hardel, Kluender, Quade
-------Source: Wausau Daily Record-Herald (Marathon Co., Wis.) 20 Aug. 1932
ASCHBRENNERS CAME TO MARATHON COUNTY WITH THE PIONEERS
Born in Germany in 1839, Frederick Aschbrenner Came to U. S. in 1856
Miss Alice Aschbrenner of Stratford submits the following life history of Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Aschbrenner:
Frederick Aschbrenner was born February 14, 1839, in Hansfelde, Germany, and at the age of seventeen years, he, his parents, and five other children migrated to American in sailboats. In Germany, Mr. Aschbrenner was apprenticing as a tailor. August Kopplin, a relative, who had previously arrived in America, urged his people to come to his country. Mr. Aschbrenner recalls how in his native vicinity, wild swine were hunted to furnish the family with meat, and he believes that in view of the sacrifice his parents made in coming to Marathon County in that early day to clear a farm from the wilderness, that they would have fared better by staying in Germany had they not looked forward to opportunities for their children to become possessed of farms.
The family settled in Marquette County in 1856 and a year later moved to the town of Berlin, this county, which was a virgin forest at that time, making the trip with oxen and wagons. After traveling ten miles mover crude roads, one of their wagons was ruined, and it was necessary to purchase three or four wagons before the trip could be completed. With them were the Carl Fehlhaber, Gustave Haehlke, Carl Anklam and Julius Hardel families. Wausau was then Big Bull Falls and a single building served that community for a church and school. Land in the town of Berlin sold at $100 per eighty acres and was a good quality, with a good supply of wood and excellent water. Here they experience all the hardships of the early pioneers and made their home one winter in a “dug out” on the present Fred Aschbrenner place. The next spring they began the arduous task of clearing a home site, and then moved into their log house. A log barn was also constructed and housed a yoke of oxen, a cow and a few chickens. The first horse was purchased then years later. Until then, butter and eggs were carried to Wausau to exchange them for provisions, a distance of fourteen miles. No roads traversed the vicinity and the only trail was a footpath. Little evidence or more years ago remain today, an occasional log house or barn which was left standing more for reasons of sentiment than utility being the sole relic of hewing of farms and homes out of forests which covered most of the state at that time. The early settlers, to clear land, had to burn the forests, and they would stay up all night trying to burn logs, including the basswood, which burned with the greatest difficulty, and white pine and basswood logs required twenty years to rot.
Mr. Aschbrenner states that about 1890, a hazardous hurricane swept through the county, doing great damage to property and crops. One day, while returning home from Wausau, he noticed a black cloud coming towards him and he quickly jumped off the wagon and the only thing that saved him was to clench to the grass until the hurricane disappeared, while the team and wagon ran into a stump filed, the provisions being scattered. On arriving home he found his eighty acre filed, and buildings were damaged several besides few of the older pioneers being killed.
He enlisted December 4, 1862, and served three years in the Great War of the Rebellion and in March, 1871, was married to Miss Bertha Kluender, who came to American in 1868. The couple made their home on the home site of his parents, which is now owned by the son, Fred, and in 1902, they were encouraged to move to Stratford by the late Ferdinand Quade, brother-in-law of Mr. Aschbrenner. There they again cleared a farm and with 16,000 bricks, purchased from John Ringle of Wausau, they erected their residence and constructed other buildings which are now owned by their son, Henry. Stratford, back in 1900 was a village of “live wire” activity when the R. Connor Company sawmill operated full force day and night and is quite a contrast as it is not operating at the present writing.
Mr. and Mrs. Aschbrenner’s present home was erected in 1915, two blocks from their son, Henry.
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