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Henry Bodenstab, Page 705
HENRY BODENSTAB, M. D., was one of the pioneer physicians of Sheboygan County. Coming here when Indians, wolves and deer were numerous, he saw the county developed into one of the rich agricultural sections of the State. Sheboygan, which then consisted of about a half-dozen houses, in the midst of an unbroken forest, has grown to be the second city in the State, as a manufacturing center. Dr. Bodenstab took an active part in the development of the county from the time of his arrival until his death. He was a man of fine scholarship, and was well versed in the science of his profession. He was born April 19, 1804, in Diedersen, near the city of Hanover, province of Hanover, Germany. His father, who was a teacher by profession, gave the son good opportunities for obtaining an education. After attending the schools of his native town, he entered college at Hanover. When young he lost his father, and in order to pursue a medical course he was obliged to borrow money. Having completed his studies, he was graduated from a medical college at Goettingen, in 1828. Too poor to pay for a diploma, which cost about $100, he had to deprive himself of the pleasure of possessing such a desirable document until he could earn the money by the practice of his profession. Locating at Ronnenberg, he made that his home until two years prior to his emigration to the United States.
At Gehrten, July 4, 1830, he wedded Miss Annette M. Jasper, who was born in Kirchdorf, Hanover, Germany. Her father was an influential man in his locality, being Tax Collector for many years. Annette was but eight years old when her mother died, after which she made her home with an aunt, receiving a good education in the High School in the city of Hanover.
In 1844, Dr. Bodenstab removed to Hameln, and two years later, with his wife and five children, embarked on board a sailing-vessel at Bremen. After forty-nine days of storm and calm, they dropped anchor in the harbor of New York. The first year and a-half after landing in this country was spent in practice at Albany, N. Y. On the 1st of October, 1847, Dr. Bodenstab arrived at Sheboygan. A few days later, he removed to a tract of land in what is now Herman Township. Skillful in his profession, he gained an extensive practice, but this vocation being distasteful to him, he decided to give his attention to farming. With the aid of his sons, he developed a fine farm of two hundred and forty-three acres.
Dr. Bodenstab was widely and favorably known as a physician and surgeon. Such was his reputation that the citizens of Manitowoc offered to give him a building site if he would locate there. Mrs. Bodenstab liking Sheboygan better, it was decided to remove to that city in 1871. He survived but six years, dying September 2, 1877. Mrs. Bodenstab still makes this city her home, and should she live until September 8, 1893, she will have reached her eighty-fourth year. Of their seven children, six are living: Augusta is the wife of C. H. M. Peterson, of Plymouth, Wis.; Frederick is a farmer, living on the old homestead; Julius is in the real-estate business in Milwaukee; Matilda is the wife of John T. Hertel, of Neenah, Wis.; George is the next on order of birth; and Louise is at home. Henry died in infancy.
Dr. Bodenstab is well remembered by the old settlers, among whom he was held in high regard for his many excellent qualities.
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