Ferdinand Frederick Ranniger
Among the capable dairymen of Crawford county must be mentioned Ferdinand Frederick Ranniger, who resides on an eighty-acre tract in Denison township.
He was born in Clinton county, Iowa, on the 2d of December, 1879, a son of Frederick and Augusta (Grage) Ranniger, In their family were three children, but two of whom attained maturity. Ferdinand Frederick, our subject and Anna, who became the wife of W. H. Rule of Crawford county. The eldest child died in infancy.
The boyhood and youth of Ferdinand Frederick Ranniger were spent in the paternal home and were largely devoted to the acquirement of an education. After completing the course of the common schools he engaged in teaching, following that occupation for five years. At the expiration of that period he bought eighty acres of land in Denison township, where he continues to reside, engaging in dairying and raising thoroughbred hogs.
On the 4th of April, 1906, Mr. Ranniger was united in marriage to Miss Merle Merab Smith, a daughter of M. N. and Loretta G. (Higley) Smith, of Denison. Her parents were among the early settlers of Iowa and removed from the eastern part of the state to Crawford county with an ox team in 1873. They were en route to Kansas, but one of their sons having the misfortune to break his leg they were forced to stop at Arcadia until he recovered, during which period they decided to become permanent residents of this county and so located upon a forty-acre farm, which they bought in the northeastern part of Denison township.
They cultivated this property until 1887, at which time the town of Manilla began to boom, and on disposing of their farm they removed there. While, residing in Manilla they lost two of their children with typhoid fever, following which they removed to Denison, where they continued to reside until Mrs. Smith passed away in 1907, at the age of sixty-eight. Mr. Smith subsequently went to Wisconsin and he continues to reside at Wautoma, that state. Seven children were born unto them, but the two eldest, Bird V. and Vinnie, are deceased. The others are: May V., the wife of A. G. Bagge, of Fonda, Iowa; Hope, who married Professor G. N. Knight, of Salina, Kansas, and is now deceased; Iva H., who is connected with the Crawford County State Bank of Denison; Glen H., deceased; and Merle, the wife of our subject.
Mr. and Mrs. Ranniger have become the parents of two children: Clifford Earl, born on the 10th of May, 1907; and Howard, whose birth occurred on the 14th of July, 1910.
The religious views of Mr. and Mrs. Ranniger conform to those of the Methodist Episcopal denomination in which they hold membership. Being an advocate of the principles of republicanism, Mr. Ranniger gives his support to the men and measures of that party, but not caring for public honors or the emoluments of office he never actively participates in affairs of a governmental nature.
Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.