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Conrad Riehle (1828 – 1881)

Wagshurst, Baden to Spillville, Iowa;
His Life and Descendants   

Prepared by Dorothy (Riehle) Call

Conrad1 Riehle was born November 24, 1828* in Wagshurst, Baden, Germany1,2, and died August 06, 1881 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa3.  He married Anna Jarosh September 24, 1856 in a Pioneer wedding at an undetermined location4.  She was born March 11, 1837 in Tabor, Bohemia Czech Republic)5,6, and died March 30, 1914 in Spillville, Winneshiek County,  Iowa7
 
Note:
  There is a discrepancy with Conrad Riehle’s birth date.  The Wagshurst Catholic Church records list:  Konrad Riehle, child of Felix Riehle and his wife Helena Eckstein, born and baptized on 24 November 1828.  However, the birth date listed on Conrad Riehle’s tombstone in St. Clement’s Cemetery in Winneshiek County, Iowa is 25 November 1827. The evidence we have gathered to date confirms that Conrad Riehle is the son of Felix Riehle, so we have come to the conclusion that the birth date listed on the tombstone is wrong.

Conrad emigrated from Wagshurst, Baden, Germany with his parents and siblings in 1847.  The Felix Riehle Family settled in Ripley County, Indiana.  In 1848, settlers from nearby Oldenburg, Indiana made an exploratory trip to the frontier of Northeastern Iowa.  These settlers came back with glowing reports of the Iowa frontier.  Conrad Riehle and his neighbor George Herzog, both young unmarried men, moved to Iowa in 1850.

On the 1850 Federal Census, Conrad Riehle lived with George Bachel family in Jackson Township in Winneshiek County, Iowa along with Ferdalin Baumgardener.  Conrad later settled in the Calmar Township (south west corner of Winneshiek County) Iowa.  He was one of three settlers that had a team of horses in 1851; most settlers used oxen, which were much cheaper. Conrad Riehle was a farmer, grew wheat, oats and corn.  The Federal Census from 1860 – 1880 shows that farming continued well; that Conrad’s sons were progressive farmers; that their crops were good; that Conrad prospered.  Two separate citations mention that Conrad drove a two-seated surrey to church with great enthusiasm.

Conrad and other German-speaking settlers helped to construct the first permanent church in Spillville, Iowa.  It was made of brick and named St. Clement.  Construction began in 1856.  Conrad Riehle and Anna Jarosh’s marriage is listed in a pioneer roster of the Catholic clergy before a resident pastor was assigned to Spillville.  They were married on September 24, 1856. She was of Czech decent, he was German.  Conrad’s portrait hangs in the Bily Brothers’ Museum in Spillville, Iowa, and the caption reads, “Conrad Riehle–the fifth settler of Spillville and the first to come with a team of horses and a wagon”.    

More about Conrad Riehle:

  • Resided in Iowa, Winneshiek County9
  • July 23, 1858, received citizenship papers from District Court, Winneshiek County, Iowa
  • 1860, Farmer, Real Estate: $1000, Personal: $34010
  • 1870, Farmer, Real Estate: $3000, Personal: $110011
  • 1880, Farmer12
  • August 1881, Buried at St. Clements Cemetery, Winneshiek County, Iowa8; Cause of Death: Pneumonia

More About Anna Jarosh:

  • Burial: St. Clement’s Cemetery, Winneshiek County, Iowa13
  • Cause of Death: Carcinoma of Stomach
  • Fact 1: 1850, came to US, settled first in Cleveland, Ohio14
  • Fact 2: 1851, Settled in Iowa15
  • Fact 3: After death of 2nd Husband, She lived with Rose (daughter) and Joseph Slebiska16 
  • Fact 4: April 02, 1914, Buried at St. Clement Cemetery, Spillville, Iowa

Children of Conrad Riehle and Anna Jarosh:

  • Caroline2 Riehle, born about 1857 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died Unknown.  She married John (J.C.) Klein May 14, 1878.
  • Elizabeth Riehle, born about 1859 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died Unknown.  She married John Dvorak.
  • Anthony Riehle, born about 1861 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died 1940 in Iowa.
  • Frank Riehle, born May 13, 1863 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died October 23, 1893 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa.
  • Mary Anna Riehle, born July 29, 1865 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died Unknown.  She married James Beranek.
  • Joseph Francis Riehle, born July 05, 1867 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died January 16, 1944 in Iowa.
  • Rosa Riehle, born about 1869 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died September 17, 1944.
  • Henry Riehle, born July 28, 1871 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died July 1939 in Iowa.
  • Anna Riehle, born August 06, 1873 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died Unknown.  She married Fred Sestak.
  • George Riehle, born February 25, 1876 in Iowa; died 1963 in Iowa.
  • William Riehle, born February 03, 1878 in Winneshiek County, Iowa; died June 22, 1964 in Iowa.

Generation No. 2

Anthony2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born about 1861 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died 1940 in Iowa.  He married Harriet Theresa Heldt November 20, 1883.  She was born 1858 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died 1941 in Iowa.

Child of Anthony Riehle and Harriet Heldt is:

  • Rose Emma3 Riehle.  Married Carl Edward Herold,born about 1885.

Frank2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born May 13, 1863 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died October 23, 1893 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa.  He married Rose Caroline Heldt June 24, 1884.  She was born August 24, 1860 in Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died March 06, 1949 in Cresco, Howard County, Iowa.

Notes for Frank Riehle: Frank Riehle and his brother Anton Riehle were crossing the Brewery Bridge in Spillville, Iowa in October 1893.  The bridge was too weak to support the weight of steam traction engine.  The floor of the bridge collapsed, tumbling the men and the rig sixteen feet below to the bed of Spielman’s Creek.  Anton escaped with a bruised toe, but Frank was scalded by the escaping steam and water and died.  Frank’s wife sued the county for $5,000 damages.  On advice, she settled for $1,000, which the supervisors offered as full compensation. Because the brothers knew the bridge was considered to be weak, the board held there was no legal claim on the county.  However, the board further reasoned that it would cost at least that sum to carry the suit through the courts, that the widow would lose, and the suit would impoverish her, and that because there were four dependant children, the family would become wards of the county.  The supervisors concluded that the payment of the sum would make it possible for Mrs. Riehle to pay off the mortgage on the 80 acres she occupied and enable her to become self sufficient. (They Came to This Place, Klimesh, p.117, c. 1983.  Information used with permission of Cyril Klimesh)

More About Frank Riehle:

  • 1891, Bought farm from John Adam Heldt
  • Cause of Death: Scalded in steam tractor accident

Notes for Rosalia Caroline (Heldt) Riehle:  

Rose (Heldt) Riehle 
(1860 – 1949)
  • After husband, Frank, was killed in the accident on the bridge, daughter Rosena was born 18 May 1894 and died 5 March 1900.  Rosena was a red-haired girl whose hair hung down to her waist. 
  • Grandma Rose was very frugal.  She saved her seed, started it sprouting, and planted that seed for the family garden.  She spent most of her time hoeing. She was stalwart, walked straight, and was very independent.  My father, Fred Riehle, would buy whiskey for his mother (Rose) and she would hide it.  She made her own clothes and she particularly liked polka dots.  Her expression was, “Is that right.”  Evidently, she had things her own way on the farm.  One had to butcher the right way and she had her own way for smokehouse seasoning.
  • I (Dorothy Riehle Call) remember visiting the farm, and my greatest recollection is the black walnut tree.  One had to use an anvil and hammer to pound on the walnut, which had an outer fuzzy green covering.  I also recall the Indian graves that had been plowed around and it was easy to see.
  • Grandma Rose was aptly named as she had flaming red hair.  Even in old age, her hair dulled down but was never gray.
  • Grandma Rose moved to town with Uncle Joe and Aunt Carrie after renting the farm. She wove rugs to supplement her income.  During WWII she was active in the Red Cross and was awarded a Red Cross pin. 
  • Rose eventually sold the farm to George A. Riehle
  • Died on March 6, 1949 and was buried at St. Clement Cemetery

Notes for Francis Joseph Herold:

  • George Anthony Riehle, born July 05, 1887 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa; died April 09, 1963 in Iowa.  He married Mathilda Ptacek June 03, 1913; born January 02, 1889; died June 29, 1971.
  • Francis J. Herold and Caroline Riehle Harold were the Godparents of Dorothy Riehle Call. 

More About George Anthony Riehle:

  • 1925, Bought Family Farm from Rose Heldt Riehle
  • 1950, Sold Family Farm to Raymond Riehle
  • 1973, Farm sold to Roger Riehle
  • 1984, Farm known as RIEHLE FAMILY FARMS (has been in family since 1856, John A. Heldt.)

Frank W. Riehle, born December 28, 1889 in Winneshiek County, Iowa.  He married Sophia Neubauer.

Frederick Riehle
(1893 – 1988)

Frederick Henry Riehle, born February 18, 1893 in Spillville, Winneshiek Co., Iowa; died April 08, 1988 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  He married (1) Gertrude Regina Eleanor Steinmetz October 07, 1913 in St. Joseph’s Church, Cresco, Iowa; born September 18, 1895 in Cresco, Howard Co., Iowa; divorced in 1950; died May 14, 1982 in Cresco, Howard Co., Iowa.  He married (2) Muriel Luers August 21, 1951.

Rosena K. Riehle, born May 19, 1894 in Winneshiek County, Iowa; died March 05, 1900 in Winneshiek County, Iowa.  Cause of Death: Ruptured appendix17

Joseph Francis2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born July 05, 1867 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died January 16, 1944 in Iowa.  He married Katherine M. Heldt September 08, 1891.  She was born June 1870 in Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died Unknown. The Census of January 14, 1920 shows him at Stapleton Twp., Chickasaw County, Iowa

Children of Joseph Riehle and Katherine Heldt are:

  • Elmer3 Riehle, born about 1897.
  • Clarence Riehle, born about 1902.
  • Aloysius Riehle, born about 1904.
  • Louise Riehle, born about 1904.

Rosa2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born about 1869 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died September 17, 1944.  She married.   She married Joseph Slebiska February 03, 1891. 

  • Only child of Rosa Riehle and Joseph Slepicka is Gertrude3 Slepicka, born 1894 in Iowa.  She married William M. Herold; born 1890 in Iowa.

Henry2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born July 28, 1871 in Spillville, Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died July 1939 in Iowa.  He married Emma T. Heldt February 15, 1898.  She was born January 25, 1875 in Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died July 02, 1930 in Iowa. Henry Riehle and Emma Heldt were both buried at St. Clement Catholic Cemetery, Winneshiek County, Iowa

Children of Henry Riehle and Emma Heldt are:

  • Henrietta3 Riehle, born January 29, 1900; died January 20, 1982.  She married Bert Schissel.
  • Mildred Theresa Riehle, born January 09, 1903 in Ft. Atkinson, Iowa18; died April 28, 1984 in Ft. Atkinson, Iowa.  She married Zeno Phillip Huber November 24, 1920 in St. John’s Catholic Church; born April 10, 1898 in Washington Twp., Winneshiek Co., Iowa; died June 07, 1962 in Ft. Atkinson, Iowa. Between 1921 – 1962 he was a Farmer – Old Mission Huber Farm.  Mildred and Zeno were both buried at St. John’s Catholic Cemetery, Ft. Atkinson, Iowa

Wilfrid George Riehle, born July 16, 1906 in Ft. Atkinson, Iowa; died June 09, 1966 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  He married Marie Mercedes McKenna February 10, 1936 in St. Bridget’s Church, Bluffton, Iowa; born April 03, 1917 in Decorah, Winneshiek County, Iowa.

George2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born February 25, 1876 in Iowa, and died 1963 in Iowa.  He married Frances B. Herold June 27, 1899.  She was born July 04, 187719, and died 194519.

Children of George Riehle and Frances Herold are:

  • Gertrude3 Riehle, born November 15, 190219; died December 09, 1996.
  •  Irene Riehle, born May 04, 190819.
  • Leo Riehle, born November 15, 191019; died July 195719.
  • Leona Riehle, born November 15, 191019; died September 14, 198919.
  • Paul Riehle, born 191319; died 196619.
  • Viola Riehle, born May 05, 191519; died August 08, 198519.
  • Bernard Riehle, born December 13, 191719.

William2 Riehle (Conrad1) was born February 03, 1878 in Winneshiek County, Iowa, and died June 22, 1964 in Iowa.  He married Christina SoukupJuly 06, 1904 in St. Wenceslaus Church, Spillville, Winneshiek Co., Iowa.  She was born April 23, 1885 in Ft. Atkinson, Iowa, and died June 12, 1981 in Decorah, Winneshiek County, Iowa.

More About William Riehle: Occupation: Bet. 1904 – 1945, Farmer – Winneshiek Co., Calmar Twp., Section 29

Notes for Christina Soukup: Christina’s obituary says that she and William Riehle had nine children. (Decorah Journal June 18, 1981.)

Children of William Riehle and Christina Soukup are:

  • Mae3 Riehle.  She married Adolph Mashek.
  • Oscar Riehle, died at age 1.
  • Norbert Riehle.  He married Angline Sabeika.
  • Christine Riehle.  She married Ray Lukes.
  • Conrad J. Riehle.  Remained single
  • Wilma Riehle.  She married Ervin Sabelka.
  • Dorothy Riehle.  She married Russell Hanson.
  • Alice Riehle, born February 03, 1908 in Winneshiek County, Iowa.  She married James A. Kuhn September 14, 1931 in St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church, Spillville, Iowa20; born July 25, 1908 in Winneshiek County, Iowa.  Education: 1923, Graduated from the 8th grade, St. Wenceslaus School.  James A. Kuhn’s occupation was farmer – Kuhn Family Farm- Winneshiek Co., Sumner Twp., Section 34
  • Julius Robert Riehle, born December 01, 1923 in Winneshiek County, Iowa.  He married Phyllis Marie Novak; born September 12, 1936.

Endnotes

1. Wagshurst Baden Catholic Church record #44 of births listed in 1828. 

2.  Winneshiek County Courthouse, Decorah, Iowa.

3.  Tombstone inscription St. Clement’s Cemetery, Winneshiek Co., Iowa.

4.  Records of marriage found in Festina, Iowa, Citation 17, marriage of Conrad Riely (Riehle) and Anna Jarush (Jarosh).  Witnesses John and Anna Kremish. Signed by Priest Louis DeCaily.

5.  State of Iowa–Department of Vital Statistics, Death Certificate, Lists date of birth as March 11, 1837, born in Bohemia.

6.  Winneshiek Co., IA, marriage record  – Second marriage of Anna (Jaros) Reahli to Vencl Slepika on July 28,1882.  Lists her birthplace as Tabor, Bohemia.

7.  State of Iowa–Department of Vital Statistics, Death Certificate.

8.  Tombstone inscription St. Clement’s Cemetery, Winneshiek Co., Iowa.

9.  1850 Federal Census, Winneshiek County, Washington Township.

10.  1860 Federal Census, Page 106, Calmar Township, Winneshiek Co., Iowa.

11.  1870 Federal Census, Page 46, Calmar Township, Winneshiek Co., Iowa.

12.  1880 Federal Census, page 15, Ed. 340, Calmar Township, Winneshiek County, Iowa.

13.  Tombstone inscription St. Clement’s Cemetery, Winneshiek Co., Iowa.

14.  Obituary, Page 4, col. 1 and col. 2, Calmar Courier, April 10, 1914.

15.  Obituary, page 4, col. 1 and col. 2, Calmar Courier April 10, 1914.

16.  Obituary, Page 4, col. 1 and col. 2, Calmar Courier.  April 10, 1914.

17.  Notes of Dorothy Riehle Call.

18.  Iowa Sesquicentennial Project of the Decorah Genealogy Association, WINNESHIEK COUNTY, IOWA   BIOGRAPHIES – 1996,  (1996; Decorah, Iowa), page H-72, Submitted by Helen Langreck.

20.  Iowa Sesquicentennial Project of the Decorah Genealogy Association, WINNESHIEK COUNTY, IOWA   BIOGRAPHIES – 1996,  (1996; Decorah, Iowa), pages, K-58 – K59, Article submitted by Alice Kuhn.

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