In a history of Sheboygan it is imperative, if the records be complete, that mention be made of Henry G. Mueller, who, in coming to this section of the state at an early period of its development, became closely associated with business projects which have been important elements in the growth, upbuilding and prosperity of the city and county. He was a worthy and honored resident of this section, and there stands as a monument to his business ability and enterprise one of the foremost industrial concerns of Sheboygan - that of the H. G. Mueller Lumber & Manufacturing Company.
Mr. Mueller was born in Hanover, Germany, May 27, 1836, and when eleven years of age crossed the Atlantic to the new world in company with his parents. His father, Christian Mueller, was a farmer by occupation and after coming to Wisconsin spent the remainder of his life upon a farm in this country. He was one of the early and respected German-American residents of Sheboygan county, to whose efforts the district owes much of its development and improvement in pioneer times.
In those days lumbering was a most important interest in the business activities of this section and H. G. Mueller during his younger years worked in a saw and lumber mill at Howard's Grove. He was ambitious to engage in business on his own account and utilized every means that would bring him nearer to the goal desired. Time saw the fulfillment of his hope for eventually he entered the lumber business, operating a sawmill at Millersville, where he also engaged in the manufacture of flour, the town being named in honor of our subject. As he extended his business interests he became more and more widely known and the appreciation of his good qualities on the part of his fellowmen led to his election to the office of sheriff of Sheboygan county as the democratic candidate. He served for two years in that capacity and on the expiration of his term he established the lumber business that is still carried on under the name of the H. G. Mueller Lumber & Manufacturing Company.
For years he was closely associated with the lumber trade in this district and at length he broadened his business interests by taking up the manufacture of tables. The company today has a completely equipped shop for the manufacture of all kinds of tables from those of simple construction to those of the highest grade of workmanship. For years Mr. Mueller remained as president of the company and its directing head, carefully guiding its interests and formulating plans for the growth of the business - plans which came to successful fruition. Later however, he retired from active control, being succeeded in the presidency by his son, Louis G. Mueller, who is also general manager. The business today employs about forty people.
Mr. Mueller was married to Miss Wilhelmina Damrow, also a native of Germany, and of the ten children born unto them nine are still living. The wife and mother passed away in Sheboygan in 1911 and the father's death occurred on April 25, 1912, in this city where he was so long accounted a valued and highly respected resident. He represented the first ward on the board of city aldermen and at all times he was active in his support of projects and measures for the general good.
Louis G. Mueller who succeeded his father as the directing head of the H. G. Mueller Lumber & Manufacturing Company, was born in Howards Grove, February 14, 1864, and as a boy became connected with the lumberyard and eventually with the business of manufacturing tables. His early experience well qualified him to take up the management upon his father's retirement. He had long been the active and able assistant of the senior partner and his own record proves that success is not a matter of genius, as held by some, but is the outcome of clear judgment, experience and indefatigable industry.
On December 25, 1886, Louis G. Mueller was married to Miss Katie Roeder, of Manitowoc county, and unto them have been born three children, Herbert, Eleanor and Harold. Louis G. Mueller stands today as a splendid example of the enterprising, progressive business man of Sheboygan and has added new laurels to the creditable record made by his father, who, starting out in life empty handed, has been the architect of his own fortunes and has builded wisely and well so that his record may well serve as a source of inspiration and encouragement to others, showing what may be accomplished when ambition and energy lead the way.
Another son of Henry G. Mueller who has been an individual force in business expansion of Sheboygan county is William A. Mueller whose birth occurred in Millersville, Wisconsin, on March 29, 1881. He was reared at home and was educated in the public schools of his native section until he was fourteen years of age. At that time he went to work for his father in the shipping department of his factory and gained a personal and expert knowledge of the details of the lumbering trade and the construction of high-grade tables. In 1908 he resigned his position in his father's enterprise and went into business for himself, buying out the saloon belonging to Gus Wieland, and this he has conducted with energy and conscientiousness since that time. His establishment on the corner of Fifth and Pennsylvania avenues, Sheboygan, is one of the best equipped retail liquor stores in the city.
Mr. Mueller has a fine and well kept bar and his patronage is increasing as his business methods become better known. On June 2, 1907, William A. Mueller was united in marriage to Miss Olga Muehlenberg, a daughter of H. Muehlenberg, of Sheboygan, who is a fisherman by trade and owns and operates a fishing tug. Mrs. Mueller's father is a native of Germany and came to America at an early date, settling in Sheboygan county. He has followed navigation all during his active life and was for a long time captain of a lake steamer. Mr. and Mrs. William A. Mueller have one child, Robert. In his business career William Mueller has followed closely the honorable traditions handed down to him by his father and exemplified in his own character the virtues of Henry G. Mueller, combined with the qualities which are the foundation of his own forceful and vital individuality.
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