Bio: Berres, Matthew J. (1863 - 1954)



Surnames: Berres, Rodermund, Miller, Hettig,


----Source: History of Marathon County Wisconsin and Representative Citizens, by Louis Marchetti, 1913.


Berres, Matthew J. (20 November 1863 - 7 DEC 1954)


MATTHEW J. BERRES, a representative man of the town of Rib Falls, who has served in the office of town clerk for the past thirteen years, is a general farmer owning land, lying in section 19, four and one-half miles north of Edgar, Wis. He was born at Kewaskum, Washington County, Wis., November 20, 1863, and is a son of John and Catherine (Rodermund) Berres.  


John Berres was born in Germany and was seventeen years old when he accompanied his parents in 1848, to America. They were very early settlers in Washington County. Wis., and located near the present little village of St. Michaels, where they found a home, in a vast uncut timber tract. Some years later he married Catherine Rodermund, also born in Germany, whose parents, Paul and Barbara (Miller) Rodermund, had emigrated in 1847 and had settled in Washington County, Wis. In the spring of 1880 they immigrated to Marathon County and located on the land in the town of Rib Falls, now owned by Matthew J. Berres, and in order to reach it had to clear a path through the dense underbrush. He was a hard-working man, spending his time clearing his land and afterward cultivating it, thus providing for his family, contributing to the support of the Catholic Church, and giving help to his neighbors as they settled about him. When Election Day came around he went to the polls and voted the Democratic ticket, believing his duty as a citizen was thus performed, but otherwise he bothered very little about politics.  


His death occurred at Wausau, when aged sixty-nine years. His wife died two years later, and they were interred in the Trinity Catholic Cemetery at Poniatowski. They were parents of five sons and four daughters, two of the daughters and one of the sons being now deceased.


Matthew J. Berres attended the country schools in boyhood and later the West Bend school and at the age of sixteen he came with his parents to Marathon County. For some years afterward he worked in mills on the river and in logging camps and for two years was a clerk in a store after which he spent one year in the state of Washington. Returning to Marathon County in 1890 he was married to Miss Agnes Hettig, who was born in Marathon County, a daughter of Michael Hettig, a former resident of Marathon City. After marriage Mr. and Mrs. Berres located at Marshfield, Wis., where he followed the carpenter trade for three years. When the panic of 1893 caused a widespread business depression he returned to the old homestead which he had previously bought and has resided here ever since. He now has sixty acres of his land cleared and pays considerable attention to high grade Holstein cattle for dairy purposes. He has seen many changes during his lifetime in this section and remembers when there were no roads leading through the woods around this place and the nearest point where purchases could be made was miles away. As a carpenter and contractor Mr. Berres has built many of the most substantial buildings at Poniatowski and in the vicinity.  


Mr. and Mrs. Berres have the following children: Matilda, Roman T., Carrie, Minnie, Matthew C, Joseph N., George Philip, Eugene Peter, Elmer Charles and Edward Michael, all born in Marathon County except the first two, who were born at Marshfield. The two eldest daughters are teachers. The family belongs to Trinity Catholic church at Poniatowski. He has served in the offices of justice of the peace, school district clerk and town clerk.  


Note: The following information about Matthew J. Berres was provided by Molly Williams:


- Died: December 7, 1954 in Athens, Marathon Co., Wisconsin.

- Buried: Calvary Cemetery in Athens, Marathon Co., Wisconsin



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