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Rebman Farms History

The history of Rebman Farms is traceable to the Gros-Rederching, Alsace, a region of present day France near the German border. Johann Rebmann (1803-1881), son of Adam Rebmann and Anne-Marie Rohr Rebmann was one of 12 children. He married Margaretta Dorothy Hoffman and immigrated to the US around 1831. They settled around Albany, NY but then moved to Genessee, NY and then to St Louis, Mo. Finally, around 1840 they settled in Rushville Township, Schuyler County, Illinois near the present day town of Pleasant View. Like his father, John (English form of Johann) and Margaretta had 12 children between the years of 1831-1857. One of these children, Benjamin Franklin Rebman (1848-1915) was my great-grandfather.

Adam Rebmann was a weaver by trade and his wife, Anne-Marie was a hosiery maker. Cousins to both the Rebmann and Rohr family were involved in cooperage (cask making) and growing grapes in the Alsace region. It is from this background that John came to America.

Three of the brothers of Frank (as B.F. was known), Andrew, Adam Edwin, and Phillip were born in New York. Another brother, John A., was born in St Louis, Mo. The rest of the children, George Frederick, Henrietta Elizabeth, Rosetta E., Mary, Morris, Stephen A, Delilah Adelaide, as well as B.F. himself are listed as being born in Frederick township, Schuyler County, Illinois.

In the History of Schuyler County, dated 1908 the following was penned by Bateman:

Rebman, Benjamin F. --- The family represented by this extensive farmer and dairyman of Schuyler Co, Ill. Originated in Germany and was founded in the United States by John Rebman, born February 17, 1803, and an immigrant to the new world in 1830. Soon afterward, he began to follow the cooper's trade at Frederick, Schuyler County and later settled at Pleasantview, in the same county, where his son, Benjamin F., was born January 12, 1848. Four years after the birth of the son, the family moved to a farm on Section 8, Frederick Township, where the boy passed the years of youth and was given such advantages as the neighboring school afforded. Being of an observing nature, he learned more by self-culture than from textbooks and is now a man of broad information. The family had limited means and it was necessary for him to take up the struggle for a livelihood at an early age. Grasping the work nearest at hand, he became a farm laborer, and in that capacity, continued for a considerable period, meanwhile saving his earnings with a view towards future investment.

While employed as an assistant to Davis Hatch Curry on the latter's farm, Mr. Rebman proved so capable and efficient that, when Mr. Curry felt himself to be fatally ill, he requested that his assistant be retained after his death to superintend the work of the estate. This was done and after the death of Mr. Curry, which occurred May 14, 1873, the farm was operated by Mr. Rebman. On January 1, 1879, he was united in marriage with the widow of Davis H. Curry and they remained at the "old" place for ten years, after which Mr. Rebman bought 30 acres of land and embarked in the dairy business. By degrees he has added to his original possessions until he now owns 160 acres adjoining Frederick, and 220 acres north of that village making 380 acres in all. His dairy barn is provided with a cement floor and furnished with every modern equipment, while all the appliances for the care of milk show a careful regard of sanitary conditions. Twenty-five head of cows are kept in the dairy, and the products of that department of the work are by no means insignificant.

The union of Mr. and Mrs. Rebman was blessed with three children. The eldest, Tony, was born October 17, 1881 and died April 29, 1882. The second, Gail, was born July 28, 1883, and has been given superior advantages, having attended the Blackburn University, spent one year at Eureka College and graduated from the Illinois State University (University of Illinois), afterwards accepting a position in the Colfax High School as Teacher of English and Medieval History. The youngest child, Herman, born November 21, 1884, was likewise given good advantages, and is now with his parents on the farm. Mrs. Rebman is an active worker in the Christian Church, and Mr. Rebman is in hearty sympathy with the same, although is not a member. It was largely through his suggestion and assistance that the house of worship for that congregation was erected in Frederick. In habits, he is temperate. Liquors he has abstained from, tobacco he has never used, tea and coffee form no part of his diet. Both by example and by precept he has given his influence to the cause of prohibition, and has been an opponent of the saloons. In politics, he has been a Republican ever since attaining his majority. For many years he served as School Trustee, and has always been interested in the cause of general education. In fraternal organizations, he is a Royal Arch Mason and a member of the Modern Woodmen of America.

Below is the obituary of Louisa Messerer Rebman wife of B.F. Rebman:

Death of a Pioneer.

As the mingling of its many tributaries make the county and beneficent influence of the Illinois, and bring fertility and blessings all along its way, so the uniting and blending of different lives and families build the worth and stability of a community.

In the pioneer period and better development of Schuyler County, and the establishment of better things in this immediate community, the names of Messerer, Curry and Rebman have had an influence that is creditable and permanent. In the death of sister Rebman, is the passing of the last living member of the family of Anthony and Margaret Messerer.

Louisa Messerer was born at the old home place, one mile from Frederick. February 8, 1865, she married Davis Hatch Curry. To this union was born five children—Ada, who died in young girlhood; Amos L. Burton, deceased; Dick and Beulah. Mr. Curry died May 17, 1873.

January 1, 1879, Mrs. Curry was married to Benjamin F. Rebman, and two this union was born three children—Anthony, who died in infancy; Gail and Herman. After ten years of success upon the farm, Mr. and Mrs. Rebman moved to Frederick and established the present home. Mr. Rebman died in the former residence April 11, 1915.

Mrs. Rebman has lived here surrounded by most of her family and in usefulness and comfort she was helpful and active until the last moment. On Wednesday, while making tokens of Christmas cheer, she was stricken with paralysis, from which she did not rally, passing away on Thursday at 3 a.m. without regaining consciousness. Had Sister Rebman lived until January 3, 1920, she would have attained the age of 76 years.

Her entire life has been spent in and near Frederick, where her beloved character had gathered about her lasting friends and kindred ties that shall never diminish. Her life has wrought blessings in the lives of this community, and it was befitting that her long and useful life came to its close midst the comfortable surroundings and the blessed environment that are always the fruit of honest toil and righteous living. Since her early girlhood, she has been a faithful Christian and an active member in the Christian Church. It has been largely through the efforts and assistance of Mr. and Mrs. Rebman that the church was organized and the building erected, and thru the support of herself and family that it has attained its present success.

In her death this community loses a benefactor, the church a faithful worker, and all, a dear motherly friend; the children a kind hearted mother of earth's best type. The loss is unto us all.

We unite in sorrow and sympathy with the surviving ones—Amos L. Curry of Frederick, Dick Curry of Africa, Mrs. Beulah Knight of Frederick, Gail and Herman of the home; also eight grandchildren, two great grandchildren, two nieces, Mrs. Chas. E. Courey of Chicago, Mrs. Walter Severns of Monmouth and one nephew Fred Messerer of Oakland, California.

Funeral services were conducted Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Christian church conducted by the Rev. J.N. Cloe, her pastor, who delivered a very impressive talk. Two beautiful solos were sung by Miss Broodman of Beardstown. The floral offerings were many and very beautiful. Interment in the Messerer cemetery.

Herman Rebman (son of B.F. and Louisa Rebman ) was married to Ida Burrell.

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