My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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JACOB KLEIN. This gentleman is quite an old settler of Xenia, where he has an established reputation as a man of high business ability and excellent character. During the early years of his residence here he was so thoroughly identified with the efforts to secure a Catholic Church that the history of the movement is almost a history of himself. Probably there is no man in the neighborhood to whom greater credit is due for the success of that organization in this city.

The eyes of Mr. Klein first saw the light of day in Bavaria, Germany, November 23, 1822, and in May, 1832, he came with his parents, Wendel and Mary Ann (Schetzer) Klein, to Cincinnati. The father bought a farm in Brown County, near Georgetown, and upon it he built a church and also donated land for the Catholic graveyard. With such an example before him it is not strange that young Klein, soon after beginning his career in life, should have begun his endeavors to establish a church here. When about twenty-two years old he left his home and came to Xenia where he embarked in the business of a baker and confectioner and a dealer in groceries. He continued in business until about four years ago, at present being occupied with the renting of his city property, tobacco growing and the ice business. He owns four stores on West Main Street, a fine brick residence of twelve rooms just beyond Hoven & Allison’s rope walk, an ice-house and about nine acres of land within the city limits. This fortune has been built up by his own efforts and reflects credit upon his character and capabilities.

A few months after Mr. Klein took up his residence here he had mass read in his house, Father Yonker, afterward Bishop, coming over from the Emanuel Church in Dayton. There were but nine Catholics in the neighborhood and our subject is the only one of that number now left here. After this first mass was read, a church organization was made and ere long they were visited by Bishop Purcell, after which a subscription was started for a building. Mr. Klein not only had charge of the subscription but in his own name bought the lots where the church now stands, holding them for its use and donating $400 for its benefit. He aided largely in the enterprise and was one of the prominent members, among others who helped to build, being John Day and T. O’Neil. Mr. Klein also bought and held land for the burying-ground until the church was able to pay for it, buying and selling at $60 per acre, when he might have made a a great profit on it; he also laid out the yard and paid $20 for his own lot. Mr. Klein also rented a room and started a parochial school; afterward he built a schoolhouse of one story, to which later another story was added. He received his pay from the church in small amounts as they were able to pay.

In August, 1844, Mr. Klein was united in marriage with Miss Elenora Rhinehart, the marriage ceremony being performed in the church on his father’s farm. Of this union three children, were born, of whom but one are now living — Wendel, whose home is in Batavia. The wife and mother departed this life August 29, 1858. Later Mr. Klein contracted a second marriage in Xenia, his wife being Mary K. Rheinhart. To them have been born eight children, all of whom survive and are named respectively: Jacob, John E., Benjamin A., Frances A., Mary Cecelia M., Barbara A. and Eda E. All remain at home with the exception of Mary, who is the wife of A. G. Miltner, of Troy.

In connection with his personal sketch, a portrait* of Mr. Klein is presented elsewhere in this volume.

*A portrait was included in the original printed volume.

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This family biography is one of the many biographies included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890. 

View additional Greene County, Ohio family biographies here: Greene County, Ohio Biographies

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