Bio: Schoen, Henry (102nd
Contact: Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon
Surnames: Schoen, Utecht
----Source: Clark County Press (Neillsville, Clark Co., WI) 11/07/1968
Schoen, Henry (102nd Birthday - 11 November 1968)
The oldest person in southern Clark County, and possibly the oldest man in the county, is Henry Schoen of Rt. 2 Neillsville, who will observe his 102nd birthday November 11.
Still in good health, but with failing hearing, Mr. Schoen makes his home with a son, Ed, and his family. There he “rests a lot,” watches television, reads some and enjoys playing cards, especially sheepshead.
A resident of Clark County for the last 63 years, he was born November 11, 1866 in Owatonna, Minn. He married Minnie Utecht in Owatonna on December 26, 1900. Of their nine children, eight are still living and all live in the area immediately surrounding Neillsville. Mrs. Schoen died in 1965. He has 32 grandchildren and 40 great-grandchildren.
Mr. Schoen always has enjoyed fishing; in fact, he says, the earliest event that stands out in his life is his first fishing attempt. He tied a thread to a branch, bent a pin for a hook and succeeded in hooking a number of small minnows. However, his attempts to land these fish were unsuccessful because they always wriggled from the bent pin as he pulled them from the water.
As a teenager, he and several friends visited the Younger brothers, who were prisoners in the Minnesota State Prison at Stillwater. He recalls talking to and shaking hands with Cole Younger. For the edification of “younger” readers, the Younger brothers were widely known for their exploits during the Jess James era. They were Outlaws and members of the James-Younger gang, who operated from 1866 to the 1880s.
Mr. Schoen learned the blacksmith trade from his father and worked at this for 23 years. When he moved to Wisconsin in 1905, he started to farm and continued at it until he retired.
Since Mr. Schoen retired before 1955, the first year for which farm earnings were covered by the social security act, he was unable to receive any social security benefits until the 1966 amendments w e re adopted. These amendments provided that all persons who attained the age of 72 prior to 1968, and had never worked under social security, could receive a social security benefit providing they were not receiving any other public or governmental benefit. Mr. Schoen met these requirements and became entitled to a cash benefit of $35 per month effective in October, 1966. This amount was raised to $40 in February, 1968.
In July, 1966, Mr. Schoen became eligible under the Medicare provisions of the social security program. His health has been good so he hasn’t had to use these benefits very much. He hopes that his health remains good so that he won’t have need for them.
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