One of the extensive property owners of Schleswig, who for many years was identified with the agricultural interests of Crawford county, is John Ehler, who is now living on an eighty acre tract in Otter Creek township, which he rents as he is devoting his entire time and energies to the buying and shipping of stock. He is a native of Germany, being the third child of his parents, Matt and Caroline Ehler.
His natal day was the 27th of September, 1867. Of the six children in the family but five reached maturity, Agnes, the youngest, having died in infancy. The other four are: Julius, Ludwig, Richard and Matilda, the first three are residents of Ida county, this state, but the latter has never left the fatherland. The mother passed away in Germany and in 1893 the father decided to come to the United States. He first settled in Ida county, Iowa, and after living there about seven years he removed to Crawford county, where he resided for three years, and then returned to Ida county, where he continued to live until his death at the age of seventy-seven years.
The boyhood and youth of John Ehler were spent in the land of his nativity, but having decided that America afforded greater opportunities he crossed the Atlantic and transferred his citizenship to the United States. During the first two years of his residence in this country he worked on a farm in Jackson county, and then removed to Ida county but after following the same occupation there for three years came to Crawford county, where he hired out for two years longer. At the end of that time he had acquired the necessary means to buy an eighty acre tract, where he engaged in general farming and stock-raising. For ten years he made a specialty of the latter and bought and sold land, owning at various times one thousand acres.
He has met with more than moderate success in his different ventures and now owns one hundred and sixty acres in Otter Creek township, another quarter section in Ida county, a similar amount in Monroe county and one-half section in Woodbury county, making the aggregation of his holdings in this state nine hundred and sixty acres, all of which he has rented. In addition to his country real estate he owns several business blocks and residences in Schleswig, all of which bring him good rentals. He has always been an energetic, active man and although he is well able to retire, having a com-· petence which is sufficiently large to provide him with all of the comforts and many of the luxuries of life, he is still engaged in the buying and selling of stock, from which he is realizing profitable returns.
Mr. Ehler was united in marriage to Miss Dora Suckstorf, who is one of the two daughters born unto Henry and Catherine (Hoffelt) Suckstorf. The older daughter, Wilhelmina, became the wife of Laurence Petersen and is now living in Morgan township, this county. Mr. and Mrs. Ehler have become the parents of four children but Lurie, the eldest, is deceased, and those surviving are Clara, Eddie and Edna, all of whom are at home.
The family are identified with the Lutheran denomination and fraternally Mr. Ehler is affiliated with the Modern Woodmen. The candidates of the democratic party always receive his support, as he has been identified with that party ever since granted the right of franchise. He is not an office seeker, as his private interests absorb the greater part of his time and thought, but he fulfills the requirements of good citizenship by going to the polls on election day and casting a ballot for the men and measures of his party. He is a man who by his forceful personality and business acumen must needs command the respect of those who come in contact with him, at the same time his .fine regard for the rights of others and his fairness in all transactions accords him the esteem of those with whom he has dealings.
Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.