Fritz Witt, who owns an excellent two hundred acre farm in Crawford county, has acquired a competence which now enables him to live retired in Schleswig, where he has recently erected a thoroughly modern residence.
He was born in Germany on the 4th of November, 1847, and is a son of Carl and Johanna (Esmark) Witt, who lived and died in the fatherland. They were the parents of the following children: Sophia, the wife of Hans Kruse, of Manning, Iowa; Louisa, who is deceased; Johanna, who married Carl Staak, of Germany; Christina, deceased; Maria, the deceased wife of Rudolph Lehfrerdt, of Denison; Carlotta, the wife of Fritz Hensen, of Germany; Carl, of Denison; and Fritz, the subject of this sketch.
Fritz Witt was a resident of his native land for the first twenty-three years of his life, but in 1870 he decided that the United States afforded better opportunities for the energetic young men than the older country. Upon landing he immediately made his way westward and located in Crawford county, Iowa, and for seven years he followed various pursuits, during which time he acquired the capital to buy eighty acres of land. He was a sheep herder in the old country and so in addition to his agricultural pursuits, made a specialty of sheep-raising, in which venture he met with gratifying success and was able to add to his holdings from time to time until he acquired two hundred acres of land.
About twenty-one years ago he and George Mayercord, of Denison, were engaged in the shipping of cattle and hogs for a time, and it proved to be a profitable undertaking. Mr. Witt is a man who cautiously plans and as carefully executes every project he enters into and the result is a concentration of effort which usually compels success. He has rented his homestead to his son and is now enjoying in the evening of life the ease which his comfortable circumstances provide.
On the 6th of January, 1875, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Witt and Miss Johanna Ohl, of Otter Creek township, a daughter of Ernest and Delside (Dibbern) OhI. Seven children were born unto Mr. and Mrs, Ohl, as follows: August, who is living at Denison; William, a resident of Dunlap, this state; Amil, living at Blue Island, Illinois; Margaret, the wife of Carl Schreder, of Buck Grove; Matilda, who married Herman Framberg, of Chicago; Johanna, the wife of Fritz Witt; and Christina, who became the wife of Jurgen Schroeder, of Schleswig.
Mr. and Mrs. Witt have become the parents of the following children: Emma, the deceased wife of Amos Hollander; Ludwick of Otter Creek township; Christina, the wife of John Krohnke, of Schleswig; Amanda, the wife of William Schmidt, of Schleswig; Benjamin, of Schleswig; and Ella, who married Paul F. Wilson, of Omaha.
They all affiliate with the Lutheran church, according to which faith they endeavor to guide their lifes. Mr. Witt has ever given his support to the democratic party and takes an active interest in all local political issues, having served in the majority of the minor township offices, the duties of which he discharged creditably and satisfactorily to his constituency. He has many friends who accord him the respect his life principles and business policy most justly merit.
Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.