In 1884, Frederick Gustav Schoeneberg was 17 years old and traveled by Steam Ship from the port in Bremen, Germany to New York and then on to the Town of Leeds, Wisconsin. A year later, his parents Emelia & August joined him.
Emelia had an Uncle named Johann Heinrich Ludwig Kind (a.k.a - H.L. Kind) already living in Portage, WI. H.L. had arrived here in September of 1848. He worked in the grain elevators along the Portage canal for 8 years, before opening his own grocery store.
The farming economy in Germany was very poor in the 1880s, and many farmers chose to emigrate to Wisconsin. There was affordable land here, and the landscape was very similar to that in Germany. There was also an extremely large German presence here. In fact, in 1886 there were two German language newspapers in Columbia County.
Frederick Schoeneberg married Emma Peeper in 1893. They were given land in Leeds, Wisconsin that Emma's Father, William, originally purchased in 1871. Passing down through five generations of Schoenebergs, the farm is now run by Darrell & Julie Schoeneberg along with their children Rhianna, Elizabeth & Grady.
Why Creek Bed Farmacy?
We get asked often, "Why did you name your farm Creek Bed Farmacy? There's no creek!"
Well, there used to be...
Here's an excerpt from "A History of Columbia County Wisconsin":
Mr. Townsend, the younger, is still alert mentally and physically despite his eighty-odd years, and his reminiscences are always welcome additions to local history, as witness the following from his pen in 1914:
"Jacob Low, a son of Gideon Low, Captain of Fort Winnebago, was the first settler in Lowville. He built a tavern on the old Madison and Portage stage road, one mile from the south line and one and three-fourths miles from the west line of town. The town was named Lowville in honor of his good early work. When he settled there, there was not a house between Portage and his tavern. It was the stage house for Fink and Walker's line from Portage to Madison. Mr. Low was the first postmaster.
Until 1849 there were but fifteen families in the town. Just east of Mr. Low's tavern there was an Indian village with thirty-seven wigwams and quite a number of Indians still there. The village was located near a number of large springs that have since entirely disappeared. They were the headwaters of Rowan Creek. This is in accord with the prediction of an old Indian living in the village at that time, who said: 'Great Spirit angry with smoky man and dry the water all up.'"1
So, we no longer have a creek - just a creek bed.
1 Jones, JE. A History of Columbia County Wisconsin. Vol. 1. Chicago: Lewis, 1914. Print.
1890 Platt Map - The Post Office was also the site of Jacob Low's Tavern.