Robert H. Koehler is closely connected with the leading business interests of the city of Plymouth and a principal stockholder in many of the successful enterprises in this portion of Wisconsin. He is at present serving as the cashier of the Plymouth Exchange Bank. He was born March 6, 1862, and is the son of Dr. Otto William and Catherine (Ullrich) Koehler.
Dr. Koehler was a native of Berlin, Germany, and in the fatherland received his education in the public schools and there also received his training as physician in the German universities. During the early years of his professional life he was connected with the medical corps of the German army for a period of thirty-two years. At the end of that time he emigrated to America, reaching the shores of the new world in the early '50s. He made his first location at Port Washington, Tuscarawas county, Ohio, where he was engaged in the active practice of his profession until the year 1865. During that year he removed to Sheboygan Falls in this county, where he purchased a comfortable and commodious home for his family and established himself in the practice of medicine and continued to be so engaged for the two years following. He then removed to the southwestern portion of the county, where he remained in the active practice of medicine during the balance of his life. He was married in Port Washington, Ohio, in the year 1860, to Miss Catherine Ullrich, a native of Germany. She came to this country in the early '50s for the purpose of paying her brother a visit who at that time was a resident of New York. Later she extended her journey to Ohio with her father, her mother having died when she was a young child. Her father was by profession a teacher in the private German schools in his native land and emigrated to this country some time in the early '50s, where he settled upon a farm about two miles east of Onion river in this county. The place is now occupied by Henry Kappel, who is a grandchild of Mr. Ullrich. He continued to live in the home he first established in Wisconsin until his death, which occurred in the early '70s, and he was buried by the side of Dr. Otto William Koehler in the Onion River cemetery. The latter was called to his final rest on the 2nd of March, 1869. Unto Dr. and Mrs. Koehler were born two children: Robert H., of this review; and A. C., living in Plymouth, this state.
Robert H. Koehler was born at Port Washington, Ohio, and with his family removed from that place to Sheboygan Falls when he was a child of but four years of age. He received his early education in the common schools of that city and in the southwestern part of this county, later graduating from the Plymouth high school in the class of 1884 during the time that W. J. Brier was principal. In his early life he was engaged in educational work, having taught one term east of Random Lake before graduating from the Plymouth high school. He afterward taught for three years at Hingham, this state, and three years in Plymouth, after which he was employed in the general merchandising establishment of Huson & Zerler and remained in the employ of that concern for a period of thirteen years. On December. 22, 1902, at a regular meeting ot the board of directors of the Plymouth Exchange Bank, he was elected to the office of cashier of that financial institution and assumed his duties as such on January 12, 1903, and has since continued to be engaged in the service of that corporation. Mr. Koehler is one of the principal owners in the Plymouth Chair Company and is the secretary and treasurer of the Plymouth Building Association.
On the 20th of April, 1884, Mr. Koehler was united in marriage to Miss Lucy C. Staley, a daughter of Josiah and Henrietta (Peiter) Staley. Her mother at one time was the owner of Social Hall. This public house at that time was the main stopping point between the southwestern portion of the county and Sheboygan. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Koehler three children have been born. Otto J., born August 25, 1885, is in the employ of a railway company and makes his home in St. Louis. On the 21st of December, 1911, he wedded Miss Susan Quick. Alvin G., born May 5, 1888, is in attendance at the Hahnemann Medical College of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from which institution he graduated in June in the class of 1912. Cecile H., born April 14, 1902, is a pupil in the public schools of Plymouth.
Mr. Koehler is independent in his political affiliations, though a very great admirer of Senator Robert La Follette of this state. He is a member of the Congregational church and treasurer of that institution in Plymouth. Fraternally he is identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and has served as treasurer of the local lodge for a great many years, while at the present time he is acting in the capacity of district secretary. For the past seven years he has been clerk of the public schools in Plymouth and has been a member of the school board and one of the most enthusiastic and helpful agencies in establishing the teachers' training course. He has also been a member of the local fire department of Plymouth since 1897 and a foreman of the Chemical Fire Company, from which position he resigned in 1909 but was immediately thereafter elected second assistant chief of the department and is still acting in the capacity of the treasurer of the chemical company.
Robert H. Koehler for many years past has been one of the representative business men of Plymouth and has always been deeply interested in the educational and moral welfare of the people of his community. His well known ability as a business man and his experience as an educator have contributed to make him one of the influential citizens of the county of Sheboygan and he is regarded as one of the most enterprising, reliable and substantial residents of this section.
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