MAISENBACHER, JOHN FRED. - German stock has furnished a great bulk of immigration to America, and owing to their family kinship with us, they have been readily assimilated. These immigrants possess unusual economic virtues that lend themselves readily to merging into the American stock. We need their labor, their economic endowments of industry, thrift and skill, and it is safe to say that without them this land never would have developed as it has. Their children, born with the parents' virtues and fostered and expanded under more favorable conditions, are to be found occupying positions of trust and responsibility in both public and business life. One of the essentially self made men of Springfield, and one who is an excellent exponent of the second generation of German-Americans, is John Fred Maisenbacher, born in that city, March 18, 1858, a son of Mathias and Margarette (Meyers) Maisenbacher, natives of Wurtemberg, Germany. After marriage the parents came to the United States, in 1848, landing in Philadelphia. From there they came that same year to Springfield, and there the father obtained employment in the railroad shops of the Wabash Company, continuing thus for twenty-three years. He then embarked in business for himself, but later retired, dying in 1884, while his widow survived him until 1903. There were ten children in the family, six sons and four daughters, of whom four sons and one daughter are now living. The father was a Democrat and a German Lutheran.
When he was only fourteen years old John F. Maisenbacher left the Fourth Ward School he had been attending, to work as a barber, but later entered the watch factory, which has given employment to so many young men. After eleven years spent in this line of work, he embarked in his present enterprise in 1883, and has since then built up a large trade.
On April 16, 1877, Mr. Maisenbacher was married in Springfield, to Pauline Girard, born in Pittsburg, Pa., daughter of Clements and Anna (Jaqueth) Girard, natives of France. Of the eight children born to Mr. and Mrs. Maisenbacher, six survive: Joseph F., of Lancaster, Pa.; Charles F., with the Springfield Watch Company; Mary, who was a music teacher, married Frank Mueller, of Springfield; Leon is with his father in business; Edward, of Lancaster, Pa.; and Voltairine, unmarried and at home, is a music teacher and art teacher. Mr. Maisenbacher is a Democrat but has never had any aspirations towards public office. He was a charter member of the S.K. of A. In religious views he is very liberal, believing in perfect freedom for all in these matters. He is perhaps the best type of the progressive German of today that is to be found in Springfield, and can always be counted upon to give of his time and means to further any object calculated to prove of general