Biography - George Brakenhoff

GEORGE BRAKENHOFF, a prominent and wealthy German-American farmer of Nokomis Township, Montgomery County, Ill., was born in Ostfriesland, Hanover, Germany, January 3, 1834, one of a family of nine children, eight of whom are living at the present time. Two sisters still reside in the Fatherland, and another sister is the wife of Henry Carsten, a leading citizen of Nokomis Township. Of the five brothers, four are living in Nokomis Township: George, Henry, Eillert and Harmon. The other brother lives in Terre Haute, Ind. The father of these children, Eillert Brakenhoff, was an agriculturist of considerable note in his native land, and died there many years ago. He was a man of worth, and as such was regarded by those who had the honor of his acquaintance, and who knew him intimately. George Brakenhoff received a fair education in his youth, and was reared to the healthful, though somewhat monotonous, pursuit of farming, his instruction in this branch of business being received at the hands of his father, who thoroughly understood every detail of the calling. This life became somewhat distasteful to him after a time, and he left the plow to become a sailor, running principally on inland boats, but in 1857 he gave up this occupation also to come to America to seek his fortune, his brother Henry having come to this country some years before. He located at Mt. Olive, Ill., where the calling of an agriculturist received his attention until 1868, when Montgomery County became his home, and on a farm in Nokomis Township he has resided ever since. In addition to his first purchase of land, which was rather modest in extent, he has made other purchases from time to time, until at the present time he is the owner of as fine a tract of land as one need wish to see, comprising two hundred acres well tilled and neatly kept. In all of his investments, he has shown the test of judgment, and has so conducted his affairs that naught has ever been said derogatory to his honor as a business man. Since opening up his farm, he has accumulated a goodly fortune, which he manages with great judgment and keen foresight. Like all men of his nativity, he is progressive in his views and of an energetic temperament, and all of his operations have been carried on according to the most advanced ideas, and have consequently resulted to his own good and the benefit of those with whom he has come in contact. He has long since gained the reputation of being one of the foremost tillers of the soil, and he has been a leader in the use of new and improved machinery for the saving of labor.
In 1858, he married Miss Trinta Akebauer, who was born on German soil, and their union has resulted in the birth of a family of ten children: Eillert, who is now managing his father's farm; Annie, who is the wife of Altman Brakenhoff, a cousin; Gerhart married Nevada Travis, and is a merchant in Nokomis; Foska, who became the wife of Andrew Peribone, and resides at Iowaton, Iowa; Maggie, the wife of John Theen, a farmer of Montgomery County; Theressa and Henry, who are living at home; John M.; Katie and Robert. All these children have had liberal educational advantages given them, improved them, and are now substantial citizens of the country, an honor to themselves and to the parents who reared them. Mr. Brakenhoff is a strong Republican in his political views, but has never held any office except some small township office, such as being a member of the Board of Education of his district. In 1880, he made a trip to his native land to see his mother, who was then living, but who has since died.

Extracted 04 Dec 2016 by Norma Hass from 1892 Portrait and Biographical Record of Montgomery and Bond Counties, Illinois, pages 267-268.

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