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Sheboygan County, Wisconsin Genealogy & History
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Frederick William Stecher


Source:
A History of Cuyahoga County and the city of Cleveland Chicago: American Historical Society, 1924, pages 32 - 34

There is a picture of F. W. Stecher on page 32a


In his connection with the larger business interests of Cleveland that gave importance to the name and career of Frederick William Stecher. He made a success of conducting a mercantile business on established lines, but his great capacity for affairs and original genius brought him into distinctive enterprises. His success in business was accompanied by a public spirited part in the community. His citizenship was widely commended, and secured him the esteem of all his fellow citizens.

The late Mr. Stecher was born at Sheboygan, Wisconsin, November 25, 1866, and died September 27, 1916. His parents, Rev. Antone Daniel and Margaret (Bachman) Stecher, were natives of Germany. His father was a Lutheran minister who lived at Cincinnati, then at Huntington, Indiana, and finally at Sheboygan, Wisconsin, He was a man of liberal education, and gave his life to the church. His death occurred in 1894, and his widow survived until 1920. They were pious, thrifty and resourceful people, devoted to their children, and inspired in them the virtues of industry and business integrity. The sons always credited their parents with a large share of their individual success.

Frederick W. Stecher acquired his preliminary education in the Lutheran parochial schools. attending the high school at Sheboygan, and subsequently entered the department of pharmacy of the University of Wisconsin, where he was graduated in 1887. He paid his own way through college by work in vacations, being for two summers employed in the drug store of his brother, Henry W., in Cleveland.

His first service as a graduate pharmacist was with the Hofflin Drug Company of Minneapolis, in which city he was later with the Palace Drug Company. In 1892 he came to Cleveland, where his brother Henry had been in the drug business for ten years, and acquired a half interest in the pharmacy. The firm was continued under the name Stecher Brothers until 1900 when Frederick W. became the sole proprietor.

The late Mr. Stecher was one of a few men who could do more than one thing and do them well. While still a druggist he developed an extensive, wholesale barber supply business, and was the organizer and first president of the Barber Supply Dealers Association of America.

However, his most conspicuous achievement was in perfecting and building up a sale for a product known to millions, though comparatively few of the users credit Mr. Stecher as the man responsible for this phenomenal success. In June, 1901, after sixteen months of study and experiment, Mr. Stecher perfected the formula for the Pompeian Massage Cream, a product that achieved recognition and favor accorded to few such preparations. The perfection of the formula was only one step toward success, since the manufacture and sale of the preparation involved the consideration of large capital. He systematically and intelligently directed advertising and sales effort. Some of his best business friends advised Mr. Stecher to give up the project, but he labored on, exerting the full resources of his energy and a remarkable degree of faith and tenacity. Within his lifetime Pompeian Massage Cream was to be found on the display selves of upwards 75,000 drug stores in America, and in nearly all barber shops in this and in foreign, since it was sold in every civilized nation. The building up of a national and international demand for this Cleveland made product had been one of the outstanding achievements in American business history.

Mr. Stecher's name also deserved consideration in connection with another of Cleveland's most distinctive industries. He was one of the founder of the American Multigraph Company, was vice president of the company and also president of the International Multigraph Sales Company. He was a stockholder in numerous banks and corporations, and owner of valuable real estate both in Cleveland and in Lakewood.

His associations were those of a man of large affairs. He was active in the Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber of Industry, Cleveland Athletic Club, Cleveland Advertising Club, Clifton Club, Rockwell Spring Trout Club, the Castalia Trout Club, and was a member of the Episcopal Church and the Masonic Order.

On October 30, 1895, he married Miss Lue Morgan. Two sons were born to their marriage. Robert Morgan Stecher, born December 1, 1897, graduated Bachelor of Arts from Dartmouth College in 1919, and completed his preparation for a professional career in the Harvard Medical College with the class of 1923. The second son, Paul Frederick, born in July 31, 1901, died October 31, 1909. Mr. and Mrs. Stecher adopted a little daughter in 1911.

Mrs. Lue Morgan Stecher is the only surviving child of Moses I. and Laura E. (Greene) Morgan. She is a descendant of James Morgan, who came from Wales in 1636 and settled at Roxbury, Massachusetts. The heads of the successive generations of descent from James the immigrant were: John, Joseph, Consider, who graduated from Yale College and practiced medicine in Connecticut; Dr. Isaac Mosley Morgan, founder of the family at Brecksville, Ohio; Consider; and Moses I. Morgan.

Dr. Isaac M. Morgan, the great-grandfather of Mrs. Stecher, was a prominent pioneer of the Western Reserve of Ohio. He was a stanch whig in politics, and no whig meeting in Brecksville was complete without his presence. He was township trustee in Brecksville, and served as county commissioner of Cuyahoga County, beginning his term in 1821. In 1823 he was appointed Common Pleas Judge by Governor Jeremiah Morrow for a seven year term, this appointment being confirmed by the Legislature in joint sessions December 21, 1823. Thus he was one of the first Common Pleas judges in Cuyahoga County, Elias Lee, Erastus Miles, Samuel Williamson and Thomas Cord preceding him. He began his term as judge in 1824. Dr. Isaac Morgan married Sally Harris, and their five children were Charles, Consider, Malvina, Marana and Daniel H. Consider Morgan, grandfather of Mrs. Stecher, had the following children: Moses I., of Brecksville, was the oldest. Henry Goodwin, the second, was a practicing physician in Cleveland and later at Eau Claire, Wisconsin, where he died. The third child, Sid Othneal, also a physician who practiced in Ohio and later at Glen Ullin, North Dakota, where he died, leaving the following children: Zetta, who married Dr. William Bodenstab, and now lives at Bismarck, North Dakota; Engie, wife of Joshua Crosby, now of Greybull, Wyoming; S. O. Morgan, of Loughman, Florida; Clara, wife of Charles Tucker, of Long Beach, California; and William, also of Long Beach. The fourth child of Consider Morgan was Ella Marana, wife of William Hanna, of Cleveland.

Moses I. Morgan, father of Mrs. Stecher, was born at Brecksville, Cuyahoga County, February 1, 1835, and died in 1895. His wife, Laura E. Greene, was born at Naperville, Illinois, and her father, William Briggs Greene, moved from New England and was a pioneer in Illinois.


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