"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.


Means, Paris O. who was for some eight years a prominent and respect business man of Rhinelander, Oneida County, having established a successful ice and fuel business here, but who has since passed away, was born in Burnham, Waldo County, Maine, Feb. 27, 1857, son of Luther and Adeline (NELSON) MEANS, who were of English ancestry. In 1881 Mr. and Mrs. Luther MEANS went to Wausau, Wis., and, taking land in the vicinity--in Weston Township, Marathon County--engaged in farming, in which occupation they continued until Mr. MEANS' death in 1895; Mrs. Adeline MEANS died in 1897. They had been the parents of six children, of whom five are now living, namely: Merritt, E., of Stevens Point; Paris O., late of Rhinelander; John R., a resident of Stevens Point; Arobine, now Mrs. George W. CALL of Merrill; and Justice, also of Merrill. Paris O. MEANS in his youth attended school in his native town. At the age of 19 he came west to Wisconsin--five years before his parents--locating at Stevens Point, and for the next six years he worked in lumber camps in that vicinity. In 1882, with is brother, G. R. MEANS, he purchased the Nick STELLER dairy and stock farm in the western part of Marathon County, which they operated until 1885. Then going to Wausau he bought the Robert BRAATZ ice business and at once proceeded to build it up, adding a coal and wood department and in time creating an establishment which was one of the largest and most successful in Wausau. This business was incorporated in 1908 under the name of the Wausau Ice & Fuel Company, Mr. MEANS being the president. In the previous year he had been elected president of the Wausau Canning Co., also becoming its manager. In the public affairs of Wausau he was active and influential, serving as a member of the city council, and being elected to the Marathon County board of supervisors in 1902, he served efficiently on that board until 1912. On Nov. 5, 1913, Mr. MEANS moved with his family to Rhinelander and here established an ice business over which he presided until his death on Nov. 29, 1921, leaving it in excellent condition. He was a man who stood high in public esteem, being a good business man, and taking an interest in civic affairs. He was well known in Masonic circles, being a Knight Templar. Mr. MEANS was married at Wausau, Wis., Dec. 31, 1887, to Lutie L. SINGLE, daughter of Thomas and Harriet (DEXTER) SINGLE. This union resulted in four children: Thomas Owen, born Oct. 19, 1890, who died Jan. 6, 1906; Zelda, born July 2, 1894, now a teacher in Rhinelander; Grace E., born Sept. 24, 1902, who is residing at home with her mother; and Gertrude, born April 3, 1910, who is a pupil in the Rhinelander High School. Mrs. MEANS is a member of the Episcopal Church, also of the Rhinelander Woman's Club, the W. C. T. U. and the local chapter of the Eastern Star. Harriet Cornelia DEXTER, the mother of Mrs. P. O. MEANS, was born in Littleton, New Hampshire, of old New England stock, on Dec. 15, 1831. At the age of four years she accompanied her parents to Milwaukee, Wis., which was then a very small place. She remained there two years, later resided for a short time at Beaver Dam and afterwards at Stevens Point, and in 1855 became a resident of Wausau. In the following year she was united in marriage to Thomas SINGLE, who passed away Dec. 17, 1866. By him she had six children, the only present survivor of whom is Mrs. Paris O. MEANS of Rhinelander. In 1870 she married for her second husband B. D. BAKER, who died Nov. 25, 1885. Of this union three children were born: T. D. BAKER, who was killed in a railway accident near La Veta, Colo.. Dec. 17, 1889; C. H. BAKER of Ashland, and John P. BAKER of Wausau. Mrs. BAKER was held in high esteem by all who knew her. She was a loving wife, a wise and affectionate mother and a kind and hospitable friend and neighbor. She lived for her family and any sacrifice that could bring joy to those near and dear to her was made most willingly. She would have her own home in which to reside and her son John was her constant and faithful attendant throughout her last illness. She died June 4, 1913, at the age of 83 years.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 381-382, 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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