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Sheboygan County, Wisconsin Genealogy & History

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Charles M. Ries

From the "History of Sheboygan County Past and Present" Volume II; Chicago, The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1912. Pp. 470-471.

Charles M. Ries, whose life record is a credit and honor to the county which in the fall of 1910 called him to public office in his election to the position of county treasurer, the duties of which he assumed on the 2nd of January, 1911, has always lived in this section of the state. His birth occurred in Sheboygan township on the 16th of February, 1861, his parents being Peter and Margaret (Clements) Ries, who were early settlers of the county, the father coming from Germany to the new world and establishing his home in Sheboygan in 1846. He was married here an became closely associated with business and public interests, his activities and his energy proving salient features in the substantial development and upbuillding of this part of the state.

Charles M. Ries was reared upon his father's farm, early becoming familiar with the duties and labors that fall to the lot of the agriculturist as he tills the soil and gathers his crops. After leaving school he remained upon the home farm and is still identified with agricultural pursuits in the county as owner of fifty-three acres of the old homestead. At one time he owned one hundred acres but sold forty-seven acres of the tract to the Northwestern Railroad Company for yard purposes. In all his farm work he has been actuated by a practical and progressive spirit, resulting in the successful development and cultivation of his place which has annually returned to him good harvests, providing him with a gratifying income. A well spent life won for him the high regard and trust of his fellow citizens, who, recognizing his capability for office, have indicated their trust in him by electing him to different positions of public responsibility. In 1890 he was appointed supervisor and the following year was elected to that office and served two terms, afterward becoming chairman of the board, in which capacity he continued for a year. He was afterward out of politics for six or eight years but later was again called to office and for eight consecutive years was elected, without opposition, as town Chairman. In the fall of 1910 his name was placed on the county ticket as a candidate for treasurer, and the election returns showed him to have been the popular candidate. He therefore assumed the duties of the office on the 2nd of January the following year, and is making a creditable record as the custodian of the public funds.

Mr. Ries was married in 1885 to Miss Johanna Sprangers, of this county, and unto them have been born thirteen children, all of whom are still living. Mr. Ries holds membership with the Catholic Knights of Wisconsin an in that organization is widely known. His many sterling traits of character, his reliability in business, his loyalty in citizenship and his devotion to his family and friends are qualities which have placed him high in public regard.

Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record - Published 1894 by Excelsior Publishing Co., Chicago" Pages 196 - 197

Charles M. Ries

Charles M. Ries, whose home is on section 34, Sheboygan Township, is one of the native-born citizens of this county, and, having spent his entire life in this community, need no introduction to the citizens of the county. His birth occurred February 16, 1861, and he is the fifth in order of birth in a family of four sons and four daughters born to Peter and Margaret {Clemens} Ries.

The father of our subject was born in Kenisch, Luxembourg, Holland, January 31, 1820. His father was a wagon-maker, but as Peter did not desire to follow that occupation he left home, and at the age of fifteen went to France, where he worked on a farm. In 1846, he sailed from Havre to New York, the voyage consuming forty-five days. He proceeded to Buffalo, and from there came to Sheboygan, which consisted of about a dozen houses at the time of his arrival. He did not long remain, however, in these parts, but at the end of a month returned to his native land, by way of New York and London. After a stay of four and a half months, he once more set out for the Western Continent, again coming to Wisconsin, and this time locating in West Bend County. He bought eighty acres of timber land and at the end of five years had cleared about half of the tract. His marriage was celebrated September 29, 1851, in Des Carte, his bride being Margaret Clemens, who was born in Wolverlingen, Luxembourg, Holland, on the 27th of April, 1821, and came to Sheboygan County in 1848, joining her brother.

About the year 1853, Mr. Ries came to this county and purchased fifty acres, to which he added, from time to time, until his domain comprised one hundred and eighty acres. He erected good buildings - two houses and two barns, besides other necessary structures. About 1881, he retired his active life, removed to the city, and divided his place among his sons. His family comprised four sons and four daughters. John died at the age of twenty-seven years, in Mazatlan, Mexico, where he was very successfully engaged in mining; Lizzie is the wife of Frank Becker, of Sheboygan; Margaret is the wife of Carl Reich, a farmer of Wilson Township; Charles M. is our subject; Peter is also a farmer of this township; Lina is the wife of Adam Lorenz, and agriculturist of Lima Township; Susan is the wife of William Sprangers, a hardware merchant of Sheboygan; and one died in infancy. The father is a Democrat in politics, and has always been an industrious and respected citizen.

Charles H. Ries of this sketch was from boyhood trained as an agriculturist, and is now one of the leading and practical farmers of the county. He is well educated in both the English and German languages, and is a man who keeps posted on the current events of the day. On attaining his majority, he started on an active business career, and has for many years been the staff and comfort of his parents.

On the 3rd of November, 1885, Mr. Ries and Miss Johanna, daughter of William and Johanna {Rademacher} Sprangers, were united in wedlock. The lady is a native of this State, and received her education in the common schools. Her parents are both living, their home being in Lima Township. By the union of our subject and wife have been born five children, in order of birth as follows: Maggie, Willie, Nora, Frank and Josephine.

In this locality, Mr. Ries has been a man of considerable prominence, and has faithfully served in various official capacities. He was appointed Supervisor in 1890, and has been re-elected each successive year, and in 1893 was made Chairman of the Board. For some years he has been Road Commissioner. In politics, he is independent, though he prefers the Democratic principles and cast his first Presidential vote for Grover Cleveland. He and his wife are Catholics, and attend St. Peter Claver's Church in Sheboygan, of which Father J. P. Van Treeck is Pastor.

The farm cultivated by our subject comprises ninety-four acres of valuable land, on which is a neat and comfortable country residence. The owner is one in whom the people of the township place the utmost confidence, and both he and his worthy wife have hosts of friends in this community.

Contributed by: Ann Lamb

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