Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens
THEODORE OTT. Theodore Ott was born on November 12, 1845, near Cologne, in the Rhine country, Germany. He is a son of Adam and Mary Ott, natives of Germany, where they grew up and were married, and made their home until 1857 when the family emigrated to America, locating in Calumet county, Wisconsin, where the elder Ott became owner of a large farm, farming having been his business in the old country. He continued this line of endeavor until 1865 when he removed to Chicago and lived with his son, Theodore, of this sketch, until his death at the age of seventy-three years and he was buried in Chicago. His family consisted of nine children, namely: Gertrude married John Smith, a farmer of Calumet county, Wisconsin; Helena married William French, of Green Bay, Wisconsin, he being now deceased; Henry is engaged in farming in Calumet county, Wisconsin; Theodore of this sketch. The other five children are deceased.
Theodore Ott was twelve years old when his parents brought him to the United States. He assisted his father on the farm in Wisconsin until 1863. He received a common school education. When eighteen years of age he went to Chicago and worked in a furniture factory as wood shaper and sawyer, for the Thayer & Tobey Furniture Company, with which firm he remained until 1873 when he began working for the McClusky & Craig Company, also furniture manufacturers, remaining with this concern a year and a half, as shaper and sawyer, and while there lost a finger in a saw. He then went to Nashville, Tennessee, in 1874 and worked for the A. H. Field & Nashville Furniture Company as wood moulder and sawyer, in fact, did all kinds of wood work for one year, then went to Humboldt, Tennessee, where he worked in the factory of the Humboldt Furniture Company for nine months, when the plant was destroyed by fire. This firm also operated a plant there in which were manufactured wagons, buggies and fruit box materials and our subject worked in this three years, after which he went to Kansas City, Missouri, and worked six months in the planing mill of Richardson & Heinz. He came to Springfield in 1887 and began working for the Kansas City, Ft. Scott & Memphis Railroad Company in their shops which are now controlled by the Frisco lines. The year he came he purchased a lot at the corner of Brower and Grant streets and built a comfortable home. He has been running a wood working machine for twenty-seven years and has long been regarded an expert in this line of work. He was journeyman for a number of years, and when the Frisco took over these shops he was promoted to foreman of the mill room which responsible position he still holds, having an average of ten men under his direction.
Mr. Ott was married in November, 1865, to Elizabeth Bower, a daughter of Joseph Bower, a farmer in Wisconsin at that time. Mrs. Ott was born in Canada.
Besides owning a good home on Brower street our subject owns a valuable farm adjoining Hazelwood cemetery. His family consisted of the following children, namely: Mary, Annie, Adam, Frank, Josephine are all deceased; Abbie married George Creiger, an Iowa farmer; Anton is a wood worker in a box factory in Los Angeles, California; Allois, a barber by trade, lives at Ozark, Missouri, where he also conducts a moving picture show; he is married and has three children, Louis, Allois and Elizabeth.
Politically, Theodore Ott is a Democrat. He belongs to the Catholic church, the Catholic Knights and was formerly a member of the Knights of Pythias.
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