WILLIAM KUEHL, a prosperous
farmer of Washington township, Shawano county, was born in Prussia, thirteen
miles from Berlin, Germany, June 16, 1834, son of Joachim and Mary (Schieber)
Kuehl, who were both born in Prussia. Joachim Kuehl was a farmer in comfortable
circumstances. He died in 1835, and his wife survived him about a
year, dying in 1836. They had the following named children: Fredericka,
now deceased; Christian, who succeeded his father on the farm, and died
in Prussia; Joachim and Charles, now deceased; and William, the subject
of this sketch.
William Kuehl received a good common-school education, left
school at the age of fourteen, and worked at home on the farm, which was
managed by his uncle, Gottfried, until his eldest brother became of age.
He remained at home until he was about twenty-one, then went to his uncle's,
twenty-one miles away, was with him for two years, and returned home in
the fall. In the following spring, 1857, he came to America. Leaving Bremen
in the sailing vessel "Hansa," which was formerly a Prussian warship, he
was twenty-three days in crossing the ocean to New York, during which time
fire broke out in the hold of the vessel, and was extinguished only with
much danger and trouble, and they had to put into Boston for a supply of
coal. He went direct to Mayville, Dodge Co., Wis., remaining there a short
time with his brother, Joachim, who had come to America one year previously.
Going then to Beaver Dam, Dodge Co., Wis., he worked on a prairie near
there until the spring of 1859; then came to Shawano and hired out to H.
C. Naber, clearing land, and continuing with him about two years. He then
bought eighty acres of land which was partially improved.
On November 11, 1860, in Shawano, Shawano Co., Wis., William
Kuehl was united in marriage with Miss Sophia Fink, who was born in Germany
May 28, 1842, and their children are as follows: Charles and Hattie, at
home; Mary, now Mrs. Gustav Tiemer, of Cecil, Washington township; William,
John and Alice, at home; Emma, at Shawano, and Albert, at home. When eighteen
years of age Miss Sophia Fink, now Mrs. Kuehl, came to America with her
mother in the sailing vessel "Donah," landing in New York. Her father had
previously died in Germany. They first settled in Mayville, Dodge Co.,
Wis., and later went to Shawano, Shawano county.
After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Kuehl settled on their eighty
acres in Shawano, where they remained ten years, in the fall of 1870 removing
to Washington township. He traded the eighty acres in Shawano for a house
and lot and 400 acres of wild land in Washington township, with Cornelius
Crowley, and after clearing built a small log house. He obtained an excellent
start by selling his pine land. Of the 400 acres he still has retained
180, which are in Section 23. In 1875 he built his present home, which
is a good, substantial house, comfortably furnished. Mr. Kuehl has held
the office of township clerk for one year, has been chairman one term,
and district school clerk for three years. Both Mr. and Mrs. Kuehl are
members of the German Lutheran Church, and he takes an active part in Church
matters. He is a worthy gentleman, well-to-do, and highly honored and respected.