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Henry E. Roth, Page 5
Henry E. Roth, a master mason by trade, who was born in Germany and came to America in 1850, was for many years a well known and respectred business man of Sheboygan and the founder of the extensive lime works of the Sheboygan Line Company. His birth occurred April 18, 1824, in Arnstadt, Thuringen, Germany.
In the excellent schools of the fatherland Henry E. Roth received a liberal education and some yeaars before attaining his majority he started to learn the mason's trade, in which he served an apprenticeship of three years. After the completion of his apprenticeship he determined to become a master mason and, complying with the requirements in Germany, he traveled about the country for three years, gaining valuable experience while engaged in the construction of various important public and private buildings. He served for two years in the German army and after completing his military service he worked in many parts of Germany and assisted in the erection of the magnificent castle of the grand duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin at Schwerin.
Bieng of a progressive nature and becoming convinced that the new world would afford him better opportunity for business and profit, in 1850 Mr. Roth emigrated to the United States, settling first in Buffalo, New York, where he followed his trade for a year. He then went to New Orleans, Louisiana, where he remained for a short time and in 1852 came to Sheboygan, where he settled and began active business. Early in his career in Sheboygan he entered into partnership with Frank Schwartz. The firm did a general contracting and building business and dring the time they were together erected many of the more pretentious buildings of Sheboygan, which were built in those early days. One such building was the Judge Taylor residence, which is an old relic of Sheboygan still in existence but now a part of the Insane Asylum. In 1854 they built the second ward school and numerous other well known buildings of that period. While hunting game one day, in 1854, Mr. Roth discovered lime rock in the vicinity of Sheboygan and shortly afterward purchased ten acres of ground on which this stone was found. This was the beginning of the now extensive works of the Sheboygan Line Company, which has added to its landed holdings some forty-file acres since the original purchase. This business, beginning in a small way, was developed until the concern shipped its product to various points on the Great Lakes, maintaining a branch house in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and transacted a large business, employing a number of men. In the earlier days of Mr. Roth's lime-manufacturing interests he did not give his entire attention to that business bu followed building as well. While constructing the Otten building he met with a serious accident which so disabled him that he gave up buildig and became engaged in the mercantile business, which he followed for three years. He then sold his mercantile establishment and thereafter until the time of his death, in 1887, he gave his entire attention to his lime quarries. The business from this time was developed more rapidly than before and the products of the quarry and kiln were shipped to all parts of the central states, and through the branch house in Minneapolis a large business was done in the northwest.
By his first marriage Mr. Roth became the father of four children, three of whom are living. Louisa H., who is the widow of Fred Brand, of Chicago, Illinois, is the mother of three children. Henry J., who is a machinist of Chicago, is married and has two children. Adolph, who completes the family, is engaged in the awning business. He is married and has six chilcred. Mr. Roth's first wilfe died in 1859 and in the following year he wedded Miss Emilie Henrietta Kanitz and they became the parents of nine children, seven of whom are now living: Emilie, who married Theodore Fleicher, manager of the Sheboygan Lime Company, by whom she has one daughter; Louis, a plumber of St. Cloud, Minnesota, who is married and has four children; William and Caroline, who reside at home; Herman, deceased, who was formerly manager of the lime works; Hedwig, who is the wife of Fred Guessenhainer and the mother of four children; Antonio, who married William Kowalke, a commercial traveler, by whom she has two children; Elfrieda, at home, who is secretary of the lime company; and Oscar, who died in infancy.
Mr. Roth throughout his lifetime was a patriotic, public-spirited man, who devoted a liberal amount of his time to public affairs. He served for two terms as city treasurer of Sheboygan and was alderman from the eighth ward, which has now been reorganized and is known as the third ward. He also served as supervisor and helped to organize a rifle company in 1853, of which company he later became captain. His passing, in 1887, marked the close of a useful and honorable career and the close of a life's work during which had been accomplished a great deal of valuable service to the city and community of Sheboygan. Greatly respected during his lifetime, his memory is held in reverence and in history he will be known as one of the most progressive, active, useful and honorable citizens of Sheboygan. The widow, Henrietta Roth, who survives and who throughout her deceased husband's career was his able helpmate, is still living in Sheboygan and is the president of the Sheboygan Lime Company.
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