Adolph Casimir Ochs


Adolph Casimir Ochs was born June 6, 1857 in Milford, Brown County, Minnesota.

The 1860 United States census showed Casimir Ochs (age 3, born in Minnesota) living with his parents Anton (age 34, born in Germany) and Walburga (age 32, born in Germany) in Milford Township, Brown County, Minnesota. His other siblings were Cecelia (age 8, born in Germany), Rosina (age 6, born in Germany), and Adolph (age 2, born in Minnesota).

The 1865 Minnesota census showed Casimir Ochs living with his parents Anton and Walburga in New Ulm, Minnesota. His other siblings were Celia, Rosine, Mary, Rudolph, and Wilhelm.

The 1870 United States census showed Casimir Ochs (age 13, born in Minnesota) living with his parents Anton (age 44, born in Germany, stone mason) and Walburga (age 39, born in Germany) in New Ulm, Minnesota. His other siblings were Cecilia (age 17, born in Germany), Rosa (age 16, born in New York), Rudolph (age 11, born in Minnesota), William (age 9, born in Minnesota), Anna Maria (age 6, born in Minnesota), Mathilda (age 4, born in Minnesota), and Ida (age 3, born in Minnesota).

The 1875 Minnesota census showed Adolph C. Ochs (age 18, born in Minnesota) living with his parents Anton (age 49, born in Germany) and Walpurga (age 44, born in Germany) in New Ulm, Minnesota. His other siblings were Rosalia (age 20, born in New York), Rudolph (age 16, born in Minnesota), William (age 13, born in Minnesota), Anna M. (age 11, born in Minnesota), Mathilde (age 9, born in Minnesota), Ida (age 8, born in Minnesota), Anton J. (age 4, born in Minnesota), Albert (age 2, born in Minnesota), and Robert L. (age 1, born in Minnesota).

The 1880 United States census showed Casemir Ochs (age 23, born in Minnesota, brick mason) living with his parents Anton (age 54, born in Germany, stone mason) and Walburga (age 49, born in Germany) in New Ulm, Minnesota. His other siblings were Rosalia (age 26, born in New York), Rudolph (age 21, born in Minnesota, brick mason), William (age 17, born in Minnesota), Maria (age 16, born in Minnesota), Mathilde (age 14, born in Minnesota), Ida (age 13, born in Minnesota), Anton (age 9, born in Minnesota), Albert (age 7, born in Minnesota), Louis (age 6, born in Minnesota), and Otto (age 4, born in Minnesota).

The 1885 Minnesota census showed Casimir Ochs (age 28, born in Minnesota) living with his parents Anton (age 58, born in Germany) and Walburga (age 54, born in Germany) in New Ulm, Minnesota. His other siblings were William (age 23, born in Minnesota), Maria (age 21, born in Minnesota), Mathilda (age 19, born in Minnesota), Ida (age 18, born in Minnesota), Anton (age 14, born in Minnesota), Albert (age 12, born in Minnesota), Louisa (age 11, born in Minnesota), and Otto (age 9, born in Minnesota).

Adolph Ochs married Mary Epple (born September 23, 1865 in Germany) on October 14, 1885, in New Ulm, Minnesota.

Wedding Bells. Another Double Wedding. Four more loving souls will be made happy to-day at Hymen’s altar. We refer to the double wedding of Mr. Casemir Ochs and Miss Mary Epple, both of New Ulm, and Mr. Em. Schotzko of St. Paul and Miss Mary Ochs of New Ulm, which will be solemnized in the Catholic church in this city this a. m. The holy knot will be tied by the Rev. Alex. Berghold in the presence of the numerous friends of the contracting parties. At the conclusion of the services the party will repair to the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Anton Ochs where a sumptuous dinner will be served. No cards have been issued and the wedding festivities will be purely a family affair. Three of the contracting parties are well known to our people and need no introduction at our hands. Em. Schotzko is a brother of Wenzel Schotzko, the proprietor of the Union Hotel, and is engaged in the restaurant business in St. Paul, where he has prepared a nice home for his young bride. Mr. Casemier Ochs and bride will continue to make their home in this city. The Review wishes the contracting parties a long and happy journey over the path which they are to-day entering. (New Ulm Weekly Review, Wednesday, October 14, 1885, Volume VIII, Number 42, Page 5)

Anton, Rudolph and Wm. Ochs of Faribault and A. C. Ochs of Springfield participated in the re-union of the Ochs families last Friday. Anton Ochs was pleasantly surprised on Friday by the arrival in the city of all his children with their families. The re-union was a large one and constituted a happy picnic group. (New Ulm Review, Wednesday, July 13, 1892, Volume XV, Number 27, Page 5)

A. C. Ochs of Springfield passed through here last week on his way to St. Paul, where he will purchase new machinery for his brickyard. Mr. Ochs intends to spend about $1,500 on improvements this year. (New Ulm Review, Wednesday, January 31, 1894, Volume XVI, Number 6, Page 5)

The 1895 Minnesota census showed Casmir Ochs (age 38, born in Minnesota, brick dealer) married to Mary (age 39, born in Minnesota) and living in Springfield, Minnesota. Children Willie (age 9, born in Minnesota), Arthur (age 7, born in Minnesota), Walter (age 5, born in Minnesota), Lydia (age 3, born in Minnesota), and Alice (age 7 months, born in Minnesota) also lived with the couple.

The 1900 United States census showed Adolph Ochs (age 42, born in June 1857 in Minnesota, proprietor brickyard) married to Mary (age 34, born in September 1865 in Germany) and living in Springfield, Minnesota. Children William A. (age 14, born in January 1886 in Minnesota), Arthur C. (age 12, born in December 1887 in Minnesota), Walter M. (age 10, born in January 1890 in Minnesota), Lydia (age 8, born in April 1892 in Minnesota), Alice (age 5, born in October 1894 in Minnesota), and Joseph G. (age 3, born in March 1897 in Minnesota) also lived with the couple.

A. C. Ochs, the fusion candidate for representative in the state legislature from Brown county, is a native of this county, having been born on a farm in the town of Milford June 6, 1857, and is therefore 43 years of age, and was the first white boy born in Brown county. On his father’s farm the subject of this review spent his youth, and after attending the district schools, completed his education in New Ulm and St. Paul. When he laid aside his text books to take up the severer duties of life, he chose for his avocation the brick and stone mason’s trade, and was afterwards contractor, erecting many of the most prominent buildings in both Springfield and New Ulm. He is a man of superior business ability and is at present the proprietor and manager of extensive brick yards at Springfield and Heron Lake, doing a most successful business in the manufacturing of pressed brick and sidewalk tiling. He was married in 1885 to Miss Mary Epple of New Ulm. Mr. Ochs is an intelligent, progressive business man, broad minded and well posted on all the questions of the day, and will, if elected, be a valuable acquisition to the legislature of the state. (New Ulm Review, Wednesday, October 31, 1900, Volume XXII, Number 43, Page 1)

The 1905 Minnesota census showed Casimer A. Ochs (age 47, born in Minnesota, brick manufacturer) married to Mary (age 39, born in Germany) and living in Springfield, Minnesota. Children Wm. A. (age 19, born in Minnesota, assistant manager brickyard), Arthur C. (age 17, born in Minnesota), Walter M. (age 15, born in Minnesota), Lydia S. (age 13, born in Minnesota), Alice T. (age 10, born in Minnesota), Joseph G. (age 8, born in Minnesota), and Marie M. (age 2, born in Minnesota) also lived with the couple.

Ochs, Adolph Casimir, manufacturer; born in Brown Co., Minn., June 6, 1857; son of Anton and Walpurga (Drexler) Ochs; educated in public schools of St. Paul and New Ulm, Minn., he took private instruction in architecture at San Francisco, Calif. Began as contractor at New Ulm, 1880, and continued in contracting and making architectural drawings until 1890; removed to Springfield, Minn., and engaged in milling business with J. B. Schmid for 2 years; sold out, began manufacturing brick and is now owner Springfield Brick Works, Heron Lake Brick Works; farms near Springfield, and part owner farm in N. Dakota. Director State Bank of Springfield, State Bank of New Ulm, State Bank of Milroy, State Bank of Lamberton, State Bank of Ivanhoe, State Bank of Wabasso, vice president State Bank of Clements, all of Minnesota. Alderman city council New Ulm, 6 years; now member Springfield School Board. Married at New Ulm, Oct. 15, 1885, to Miss Mary Epple. Address: Springfield, Minn. (The Book of Minnesotans: A Biographical Dictionary of Leading Living Men of the State of Minnesota, Edited by Albert Nelson Marquis, A. N. Marquis & Company, Chicago, 1907, Page 383)

Mr. A. C. Ochs, proprietor of the Springfield Brick Yards, at Springfield, Minn., is one of the best known and most enterprising and successful clayworkers of that state. He has been engaged in brick manufacture for eighteen years, and before he entered the business was a contractor and builder for twenty years, this experience having been of great value to him in his subsequent work. The Springfield Brick Yards turns out all kinds of common brick, hollow building block, drain-tile and wire-cut face brick. Mr. Ochs also owns a plant at Heron Lake, which makes wire-cut brick, hollow block and drain-tile of all sizes. The plants have a capacity of 85,000 common brick per day. (Brick and Clay Record, Kenfield-Leach Company, Chicago, IL, June 1908, Volume XXVIII, Number 6, Page 295)

The 1910 United States census showed A. C. Ochs (age 52, born in Minnesota, manufacturer brick and tile) married to Mary (age 44, born in Germany) and living in Springfield, Minnesota. Children Willy (age 24, born in Minnesota), Arthur (age 22, born in Minnesota), Walter (age 20, born in Minnesota), Millie (age 18, born in Minnesota), Alice (age 15, born in Minnesota), Joseph (age 13, born in Minnesota), and Marie (age 7, born in Minnesota) also lived with the couple.

A successful brickmaker from Minnesota was in the office of this journal a few days ago. This man owns two profitable brick plants of the modern type and is preparing to build a third plant that the last of his three sons may have a business of his own, for he himself practically has retired. I happened to know something about the methods of this manufacturer, but I wanted to see to what particular faculty or qualification he attributed his success. Like most men who do things this brickmaker was at a loss to say just why he had succeeded. As a matter of fact his success has been made through his ability to sell and his ability to sell was possible because he knew his subject thoroughly. Now this particular brickmaker knew little about brickmaking when he entered into the business. Before he came to this country he was a bricklayer. He had worked at the trade for a number of years. He decided to come to America where opportunity was greater. He settled in Minnesota and plied his trade. It was not long before he was in the contracting business building brick houses for other people and employing bricklayers to do the work for him. It dawned upon him one day that it would materially help him if he knew something about architecture. He was a busy man – past the school day age, but this did not deter him. He took up a correspondence school course and he learned architecture.

Thus equipped he was able to get contracts because he knew how to handle a job intelligently. A time came when he reached the point where he felt he was not getting his brick cheap enough. He had a big contracting business and he was using a large quantity of brick. He decided to make brick. He has been making them ever since, and no longer is in the contracting business, only as it applies to his manufacturing. This man knows how to sell brick. He knows it from the bricklayer’s viewpoint. He knows it from the contractor’s standpoint and he knows it from the architect’s way of thinking. In addition to this he knows it from the manufacturer’s standpoint. Those that recall his days as a bricklayer say he was a good bricklayer. Those that knew him as a contractor declare he was a good contractor. Those that know his as a brickmaker say he is a good brickmaker and point to the many self-planned improvements he has installed in his plants to improve his product and to cheapen the production. This man is not a myth. He is a man of flesh and blood and is none other than A. S. (A. C.) Ochs of Springfield, Minn. (Brick and Clay Record, Kenfield-Leach Company, Chicago, October 7, 1913, Volume XLIII, Number 7, Page 690)

A. C. Ochs, the well known brick manufacturer of Springfield, Minn., and his wife have taken up winter residence at Orlando, Florida. (The Clay Worker, T. A. Randall & Company, Indianapolis, January 1919, Volume LXXI, Number 1, Page 64)

The 1920 United States census showed A. C. Ochs (age 62, born in Minnesota, proprietor brick and tile plant) married to Mary (age 54, born in Germany) and living in Springfield, Minnesota. Children Joe (age 23, born in Minnesota) and Marie (age 17, born in Minnesota) also lived with the couple.

The 1930 United States census showed Adolph C. Ochs (age 72, born in Minnesota, president brick and tile plant) married to Mary (age 64, born in Germany) and living in Springfield, Minnesota.

Page 1. A. C. Ochs, Prominent Business Leader, Dies. Death Comes Suddenly to 82 Year Old Founder of Brick and Tile Company. Mr. Ochs Was Prominent Springfield Figure For Many Years. Adolph Casimir Ochs, founder and president of the brick and tile industry that bears his name and a business leader for over half a century, died at his home in this city at 8:40 Friday morning, March 8. Although he had been confined to his home all winter, his death came unexpectedly as he appeared to be in good spirits the evening before. He had retired from active participation in business affairs several years ago. The career of A. C. Ochs was a remarkable one. Possessed of natural talents in the building trades and a forceful personality, he made rapid strides in business and found his untiring efforts crowned with success in several fields of endeavor. While he will be best remembered as a manufacturer of brick and building tile, he was the first to discover that silos could be built economically and efficiently of hollow clay blocks and he made the silo business an important part of the local plant’s activities. His first business experience was as a contractor and builder and he also was engaged in flour milling. He was one of a group of local businessmen who started a large number of banks in the new towns that sprang up as a result of railroad extensions into Redwood county in the late nineties.

Mr. Ochs was born in Milford township, near New Ulm, June 2, 1857. When the Indian uprising of 1862 occurred, the parents gathered their children together and sought refuge in New Ulm, thereby escaping what would have been certain death. It was fitting that Mr. Ochs should have been by Governor Christianson as one of the commission that selected and had erected the impressive Milford memorial in honor of the people of his native township who lost their lives in the massacre. This monument was unveiled in 1929. The Ochs family moved to Mankato, then St. Peter and to St. Paul, later returning to New Ulm. There were 14 children in the family of Anton and Walburga Ochs of whom twelve grew to maturity. After a few years of schooling in the New Ulm schools, Mr. Ochs, at the age of 14, began serving his apprenticeship in the brick-laying and mason trade and when only eighteen years of age went to California to find work. The grasshopper plague had hit Brown county and money was scarce. He worked in San Francisco and at the same time took a correspondence course in architecture. He later in life designed many business buildings as well as other brick structures.

After four years on the West coast, Mr. Ochs returned to New Ulm to engage in the contracting business and while so [became] engaged [and] was married to Miss Mary Epple in October, 1885. Forming a partnership with John B. Schmid, then retiring from the office of sheriff of Brown county, Mr. Ochs moved to Springfield where the new firm took over the small flour mill which had been started several years previously by A. Winkelman. This business was not to his liking so the mill was sold to the Ruenitz-Bendixen families and Mr. Ochs started the brick yard just east of town where valuable clay deposits had been discovered. He continued in the contracting business while building up his brick yard. With him in the contracting business in the nineties was Frank Jaehn as partner. With the growth of the brick business he gave up the contracting. The present large and modern plant of the A. C. Ochs Brick & Tile Company is a monument to Mr. Ochs’s untiring energy and business acumen. He made a study of every angle of the brickmaking art and opened up a market for his products in neighboring states. Beginning with the manufacture of common brick by crude methods, he developed various types of face brick and build-

Page 5. ing tile, drain tile and silo blocks, installing the latest types of machinery. The University of Minnesota campus is covered with buildings built of the Ochs product. Since retiring from active work, he turned the management of the plant over to his sons, Arthur and Walter. Mr. Ochs, in a partnership with a Mr. Willard, operated a brick yard at Heron Lake for many years. This plant was discontinued. Mr. Ochs was one of the organizers of the State Bank of Springfield and for 44 years one of its directors. He also served as director of state banks at Lamberton, Milroy, Clements, Wabasso, New Ulm and Ivanhoe. Mr. Ochs took a keen interest in public affairs but cared little for public office. He served on the city council at New Ulm before coming here and was a member of the local school board for six years. He was a warm supporter and friend of W. S. Hammond, congressman and governor. Among the organizations in which he was a member were the Catholic Order of Foresters, Knights of Columbus, St. Boniface Society and the Ft. Ridgely State Park Association and the Junior Pioneers, New Ulm. He was appointed a delegate to a national conservation meeting at St. Paul and was chosen as a judge of plans for farm and other small homes by Gov. Eberhardt. He also was active in the various national organizations pertaining to brick and structural clay products manufacture.

Surviving are three sisters, Miss Ida Ochs, who made her home with him after the death of Mrs. Ochs on March 10, 1933, Mrs. Mathilda Baer and Mrs. Rose Manderfeld, New Ulm; six children, William A., Arthur C., and Walter M., all of this city; Mrs. John H. Hanten (Lydia), Watertown, S.D., Mrs. Clarence B. Michel (Alice), St. Paul, and Mrs. Henry Simons (Marie), Minneapolis. There are 26 grandchildren and two great grandchildren. One son, Joseph, died at the age of 27. Funeral services were held at St. Raphael’s Catholic church in this city Monday morning at 10 o’clock. The Orpheus Band, of which he had always been a liberal supporter and friend, took part in the funeral procession. Rev. I. Schumacher, assisted by Rev. Yunker of St. Raphael’s church and Rev. Rolwes of Bird Island and Rev. Michel of Sleepy Eye, conducted the funeral rites. There were many old friends of the deceased present from New Ulm and other cities in addition to a large number of relatives. (Springfield Advance-Press, Thursday, March 14, 1940, Volume 54, Number 11)