MARTIN MAURER. - Martin Maurer was among the early settlers of Springfield, having located here in 1854. He was born in Germany, on the 4th of September, 1839, and was a son of Martin Maurer, Sr., whose birth likewise occurred in the fatherland, and who came to America about 1840, settling in Pennsylvania, where he operated a boat on the canal and was also engaged in the coal business there until his death. His first wife, the mother of our subject, died in Germany when her son Martin was an infant. In the same country the father was again married and with his second wife he came to the United States.
Martin Maurer, following his mother's death, was reared in the family of Frank Reisch and was brought to America by Joseph Reisch when he was sixteen years of age. Frank Reisch, Sr., was the senior member of the firm of F. Reisch & sons, proprietors of the largest brewery in Springfield. He is an uncle of Mrs. Maurer and a sketch of his life is found on another page of this work. This firm is now known as The Reisch Brewing Company. After living in the city Mr. Maurer began working for Mr. Reisch. His first work here was to carry brick, and his early years were filled with arduous labor. After Mr. Reisch built his brewery Mr. Maurer continued in his employ in that connection for seventeen years and worked his way up to foreman or superintendent of the business. At the end of that time he began business on his own account, establishing a grocery store and saloon at the corner of Rutledge and Mason streets. There he engaged in business until his death and his enterprise and energies were the factors which brought to him desirable success.
In 1864 Mr. Maurer was united in marriage to Miss Hermina Thoma, also a native of Germany and a daughter of Xavier and Rosa (Rice) Thoma. Her father, who settled in Springfield in 1862, was a locksmith by trade and engaged in that business here until his death. His wife also died in this city. Eight children were born unto Mr. and Mrs. Maurer: Charles, who has now passed away; Frank X., who resides with his mother and is employed as bookkeeper in the office of the city brewery for The Reisch Brewing Company; Henry, deceased; Elizabeth, the wife of Edward Metzger, a plumber, who is living in East St. Louis; Mary, deceased; Frances, who resides at home; Martin J., who married Marie Graser and is employed as salesman in Hall and Herrick's clothing store of Springfield; and Hermina, who is with her mother.
Mr. Maurer gave his political support to the Democracy but was never an aspirant for public office or served in positions of political preferment. He died August 26, 1895, in the faith of the Catholic Church, holding membership in St. Peter and Paul's German Catholic Church of Springfield, to which all of his family belong. Mr. Maurer was a member of the old volunteer fire department of Springfield, Engine company, No. 4, and Frank Reisch, Jr., now deceased, was captain of the company. He was truly a self made man as he had no capital with which to start out in life, except that which he saved from his labors. He lived economically and carefully until he had acquired a sum sufficient to enable him to engage in business on his own account, and from the outset of his independent business career he was very successful, winning a gradually increasing trade that brought to him a very desirable income. He was prominent among the German-American citizens of Springfield and his
death was deplored by many friends. After her husband's demise Mrs. Maurer sold the business, but she owns a nice home at No. 206 North State street, where she and her children are now living.