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Sheboygan County, Wisconsin Genealogy & History
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Philip Juckem

Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record - Published 1894 by Excelsior Publishing Co., Chicago" Pages 420 - 421

Philip Juckem, one of the most prominent farmers and honored pioneers of Sheboygan County, needs no introduction to his many friends in the community, who will peruse his sketch with interest. He was born in Luxembourg, Germany, October 28, 1834, being one of ten children, three of whom died in infancy. Rhienehardt is a farmer in the Fatherland. Mathias is a well-known farmer of Sheboygan Township, and came to Wisconsin in 1848, the year it was admitted to the Union. Mary is the wife of Charles Diemmer, a farmer in Ozaukee County. The father was an agriculturist of Germany, and was in the army for nine years, when Napoleon was Emperor of the French. He went on the march to Russia, and was present at the burning of Moscow. He was also at the famous battles of Austerlitz, Jena and Waterloo. He suffered many hardships while in the service, especially during the rigorous winters that prevailed while that war was in progress. As far as known, our subject is the only descendant, in this county, of a soldier who took part in those famous battles. Both parents died in their native land, in the faith of the Catholic Church.

Philip Juckem is a good student in both the German and English languages, the latter of which he has mastered since coming to America. He was reared on a farm, and bade adieu to the Fatherland when eighteen years of age, sailing from Antwerp on the "Marie Theresa," bound for New York. He was on the Atlantic Ocean for forty-three days, the vessel encountering some terrible storms, and it was also in a collision. The "Marie Theresa" had three masts, and in order to keep from going to the bottom, they were obliged to cut them loose. The passengers were transferred to the large English vessel with which they had collided. The crew of their own ship then erected new masts, the passengers re-embarked, and they sped safely to America, which they reached April 28, 1852. Mr. Juckem went from New York to Albany by steamboat, then by railroad to Buffalo, and by steamer to Detroit and Milwaukee. Landing in Sheboygan about the 5th of May, he found he had but four five-franc pieces in his pocket. He was a stranger in a strange land, and many difficulties and hardships were before him.

For two months after coming to Sheboygan, Mr. Juckem worked with his brother Mathias, who was engaged in the butcher's business, but, not liking this employment, he went to McHenry County, Ill., where he worked for an American farmer at $8 per month. With this man, Joseph Fuller, he remained for three and a-half years. He was there taken sick with the fever, and afterward returned to this county. Sheboygan was then only a hamlet, surrounded by thick woods on every hand. Pennsylvania Avenue was the principal street, and the village consisted of not more than one hundred houses. The old pier was yet standing, and Indians were plentiful. The principal occupation of the people was fishing and clearing the land. Deer and other wild game were abundant.

The first land ever owned by our subject he purchased after returning to this county—a tract often acres on section 9, for which he paid $300. It was heavily timbered, and not an improvement had been made thereon. He commenced cutting cord-wood, and sold it on his place at six shillings a cord. This employment occupied his time during two winters. The first seeding was done in the winter of 1857, when he sowed five acres in winter wheat. He was a hard worker, and labored industriously from morn till eve of each day, and often cut one and a-half cords of maple and beach during those hours.

The marriage of Mr. Juckem and Miss Ellen Brown, a native of Germany, was celebrated November 28, 1861. She was born June 22, 1843, being a daughter of Jacob Brown. Fourteen children, of whom eight are living, were born of this union. George is married, and works in the Vollrath factory in Sheboygan; Martin resides in the same city; Joseph assists on the home farm; Susan and Mary are at home; Peter is a student in the Sheboygan schools; Ellen and Casper complete the family. Mrs. Juckem came to the United States in 1847, when she was only four years old. She grew to womanhood in this county, and has been a valuable helpmate to her husband. They are in favor of giving their children good educations, and are advocates of good schools. The family are members of the Catholic Church of Sheboygan, and have taken their share in all benevolences, to which they give from $60 to $65 per year.

The principles of the Democratic party are upheld by Mr. Juckem, his first Presidential vote being cast for James Buchanan. In local elections he votes for the man rather than the party. He is not active in politics, but has been a. valuable official, having served as Constable for several years,Township Supervisor three years, School Treasurer for a like period, and was also Township Treasurer. At present he owns one hundred and three and a-half acres of valuable land, all under most excellent improvement, and lying within three-quarters of a mile of the city limits. He landed here in 1852 a penniless German boy, and has risen to a position of affluence, carving out his own fortune by hard and honest toil, economy and industry, which are the cardinal characteristics of the thrifty German citizens, who are justly considered the most worthy adopted sons of America.


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