"History of Lincoln, Oneida, and Vilas Counties Wisconsin"

Compiled by George O.Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others. Printed in 1924 by H.C.Cooper. Jr. & Co., Minneapoli-Winona MN. ill. 787 pages. The first two hundred pages are history of the three counties, the remainder of the book is biographies.


Hilgermann, Otto A. a prominent citizen of Rhinelander, now retired from active business life, was born in Germany, april 17, 1845, son of Frederick and Frederica (JASSE) HILGERMANN. The father was a cabinet-maker by trade, and he and his wife had six children: Frederic, Otto A., Louie, Adolph, Albert and Anna, three of whom died in infancy. Both parents are also now deceased. Otto A. HILGERMANN was educated in the public schools of his native land and learned cabinet-making under his father's tuition. In the spring of 1868, at the age of 23 years, he emigrated to America, landing at New York, whence he proceeded to Cleveland, Ohio. There, however, he remained but three months, in the fall of the same year going to Chicago, in which city he spent 18 years, following his regular trade most of the time, though for awhile being in the employ of the Chicago & Northwestern Railway. After the great fire of October, 1871, which destroyed the greater part of the city, he took up contracting, in which line of endeavor he was successful for a time. Then in the fall of 1875 he embarked in the furniture business. In December, 1886, he moved to Minneapolis, where he conducted a furniture factory, including the manufacture of bar furnishings until December, 1893, when he came to Rhinelander. Here he became associated with the Rhinelander Brewing Company, whose plant had a capacity of 30,000 barrels annually, the product being sold in the state of Wisconsin only. Mr. HILGERMANN had a large interest in this factory, and he was connected with it until 1910, when the brewery was sold and he retired from active business. He is now a stockholder in the Rhinelander Refrigerator Co. and the Rhinelander Telephone Co. His business career was a successful one and he owns and occupies a fine residence at No. 921 Arbutus Street. Mr. HILGERMANN was married May 9, 1874, in Chicago, to Augusta HIRSCHMANN, who was born in Wurtemburg, Germany, Jan. 6, 1849, daughter of Frederic and Catherine (MOELLEN) HIRSCHMANN. Mrs. HILGERMANN'S parents, who carried on a confectionery business, never left the Fatherland, dying there. To our subject and wife Augusta were born six children, three of whom- Otto, Fred and Lottie-are now deceased. The survivors are: George, of Minneapolis; Hedwig, who is the wife of Mr. FRANCINE of Minneapolis; and Anna, also residing in that city, and the wife of a Mr. WALKER. On Oct. 3, 1914, Mr. HILGERMANN suffered a bereavement in the loss of his wife, who was killed in an automobile accident while returning from Minneapolis. On Jan. 22, 1917, he married Freda SCHWEIKLER, at Chicago. During his long and varied career Mr. HILGERMANN has spent some time in travel. In 1888 he went to California; in 1905, after retiring from business, he made a trip to Italy, visiting Naples; in 1910 he went again to California; in 1913 he visited Germany; in 1920 he made another trip to California, and in 1922 he again visited Germany. These travels improved his knowledge both of this and other countries and were enjoyable experiences. His is a member of several fraternal societies, including Khurum Lodge, F. & A. M., of Minneapolis; the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Knights of Honor and the Ancient Order of United Workmen.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 281 (with picture), History of Lincoln, Oneida and Vilas Counties Wisconsin; Compiled by George O. Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others 1924, H. C. Cooper, Jr. & Co.

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