John Geralds was born in the state of New York on the ad of July, 1854, his parents being Edward and Catharine (Evans) Geralds, the former likewise a native of the Empire state. In an early day the family removed to the western country, settling in Sheboygan county, this state. They made the journey from the east to their place of settlement in the west, traveling by team from their New York home to Oswego, from thence to Toronto and from that city by train to Collingwood, Canada, where they took a steamer and came direct to Sheboygan, landing at the end of eleven days' journey on the old pier which has for many years been only a historical memory to the early pioneers of Sheboygan, it having been destroyed by the constant ebb and flow of the waters of Lake Michigan more than forty years ago. At the time when the Geralds family reached Sheboygan the woods were still full of wild-fur-bearing animals. Herds of wild deer could frequently be seen grazing near the city limits and the sparsely settled outlying districts in the county were continuously traversed by Indians belonging to the tribes of the Winnebagos, Oneidas and Chippewas. The site on which the Federal building now stands at that time was occupied by an old, half-ruined blacksmith shop. Edward Geralds, now in the ninety-fourth year of his age, still resides in the city of Sheboygan, making his home with his daughter.
John Geralds was reared in his parents' home and educated in the public schools of Sheboygan. Before attaining his majority he left the parental roof and removed to the lumber regions in a more northwesterly portion of the state, where he was engaged for some time as a carpenter in the construction of railroad bridges and buildings which the company were erecting along its line of trackage at that time. Retiring from this occupation, he spent five years, between the years 1882 and 1887, as fireman employed on the boats traversing the Great Lakes. He later removed to South Dakota, and there he was engaged for some time in running a steam traction engine used in the plowing of the soil and threshing of harvested grains. He eventually returned to the city of Sheboygan in the fall of 1911.
On the 10th of March, 1881, Mr. Geralds was united in marriage to Miss George, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Levi George, both of whom were natives of New York and removed from that state to Sheboygan county in 1851, settling upon a farm a mile and a half south of Sheboygan Falls, where they continued to live during the remainder of their lives. Both are now deceased, having passed away many years ago, and their remains are interred in Sheboygan Falls cemetery.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Geralds have been born seven children, three of whom still survive. Walter, who is married and resides in the city of Sheboygan, is employed as a farm implement agent for one of the large farm machinery concerns. Ada and Jessie are still at home with their parents. Mr. Geralds is well known in the county and city of Sheboygan. His life has been one of constant activity and hard work since he passed the border line that marks the distinction between boyhood and manhood. He has been successful in his business career and is now devoting his time to the comforts of his family.
Information gathered and adapted from History of Sheboygan County, Wisconsin, Past and Present
Carl Zillier, Editor
Pubished by The S.J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1912, Chicago, IL