WILLIAM M. RESER, physician and surgeon, is a native of Tippecanoe County, Indiana, and the chief work of his life has been done in the City of Lafayette, where he has been an honored and successful physician, holding many responsible relationships in his profession.

Doctor Reser was born near Stockwell in Sheffield Township, June 19, 1863, son of Harvey and Sarah (Waymire) Reser and grandson of Jacob and Sarah (Purgett) Reser. His grandparents were natives of West Virginia and moved to Ohio about 1816. Harvey Reser was born in Ohio, near Springfield, spent his active life as a farmer and was well-to-do and highly respected citizen of Tippecanoe County.

The mother of Doctor Reser was a member of a notable pioneer family. Many of the most substantial virtues of the American pioneer stock were possessed by the Waymires. One of Doctor Reser's literary and historical labors of recent years has been compiling the genealogy of the Waymire family, descendants of John Rudolph Waymire, and his labors are exemplified in a booklet handsomely printed and illustrated, which not only possess a family story of special interest to the Waymires, but is an epitome of the development of our American civilization. John Rudolph Waymire was born in Hanover Germany, about 1725, was a soldier of the King of Hanover, but subsequently rebelled against the arbitrary authority of his ruler and in 1753 brought his family to America and first settled in Pennsylvania, but in about 1757 moved to what is now Randolph County, North Carolina, in the midst of the strong Quaker colony, where he lived until his death in 1801. Doctor Reser estimates that the descendants of John Rudolph Waymire number more than fifty thousand. Because of their opposition to slavery and also because the new lands of the West offered better opportunities, the children of John Rudolph Waymire soon after his death began their exodus to Ohio, and all of them had settled in that state by 1808.

Among them was Daniel Waymire, who was born May 3, 1776, and died July 3, 1825. He married in North Carolina in 1799 Sophia Plummer, who was born June 15, 1783, and died July 19, 1859. They had a family of thirteen children, and of these five daughters and four sons were still living in 1880. Daniel Waymire in 1806 moved to Ohio and settled on land ten miles north of Dayton. Part of this land he donated for school and church uses, and on it was built in 1844 a church ever since known as the Polk Church. On the grounds near this church the Waymire family reunions have been held for fifty-five years.

The fifth child of Daniel and Sophia (Plummer) Waymire was John Waymire, who was born August 30,1808, and died February 20, 1894. He was a man of strong intelligence and much business ability, though he had only the barest rudiments of learning. Like many other members of the family, he was skilled in the use of carpenters' tools and was, like other pioneers, a trained woodsman. He owned several farms in Montgomery County, Ohio. Hard work, thrift and honesty were his dominant traits. John Waymire married in 1833 Margaret Coble, who was born September 8,1813, and died September 14, 1846. Of her three children the only daughter was Sarah Waymire, who was born October 16, 1835, and died June 28, 1914, and was married on September 10, 1857, to Mr. Harvey Reser. Harvey Reser was born February 4, 1825, and died July 14, 1906. Of their ten children one is Dr. William M. Reser, of Lafayette.

Doctor Reser completed the work of the common schools in Tippecanoe County on March 15, 1882, and for a time was a student in the Lafayette High School and spent one year in Wabash College. When he was twenty-two years of age he took the management of the home farm during his fatherís illness, and farming was his occupation until he was past thirty-five years of age. Having decided to study medicine, he spent two years in the Indiana Medical School of Indianapolis and completed his preparation in the Jefferson Medical College of Philadelphia, where he was graduated M. D. in 1903. In the same year he located at Lafayette, and has been practicing steadily since September, 1903. He has never specialized, but has performed the routine of a busy general practitioner. During the World war period he was local health officer and medical examiner for the draft board. He is a member of the Tippecanoe County, Indiana State and American Medical Associations, being a fellow of the American Association, and for fourteen years was secretary of the County Medical Society. He also belongs to the American Hospital Association and was a charter member and one of the organizers of the Indiana State Hospital Association and served as its vice president two terms. He is on the staff of the St. Elizabeth and Home Hospitals and for twenty-five years donated his services as physician to the Orphans Home. For eight years until 1829, he was a member of the Catholic Hospital Association.

Doctor Reser married Miss Mary Erisman, a native of Lafayette and a member of a family that settled in that city in 1854. Doctor Reser has been a member of the Tippecanoe County Historical Association since it was organized in 1923, and since 1925 has been vice president of the society. In addition to his work as a genealogist for the Waymire family he has written out the results of his extensive researches into the subject of grist mills of pioneer days. Doctor Reser for twenty-five years was a director of the Star City Building & Loan Association. He is a Republican, for forty-two years a member of the Knights of Pythias, and in religion is a Protestant.

INDIANA ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS OF AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT Vol. 3
By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931


ULYSSES G. BUTCHER, postmaster of Oakland City, is a native of Gibson County, where his own honorable business career has added to the prestige long enjoyed by this family name in Southern Indiana.

Mr. Butcher was born March 4, 1869. His father, John G. Butcher, was a native of England, came to the United States when thirteen years of age, and spent all his active life on a farm near Oakland City. He married Mary A. McConnell, a native of Ohio, who came with her parents to Gibson County when a small child. These parents had a family of five children: Isabell, who married Piatt Hannum; Susie, who married Conrad Coleman; Mary L., who married John Duncan; John F., who died at the age of twenty-one; and Ulysses G.

Ulysses G. Butcher while a boy attended the grade and high school in Gibson County. During his early manhood he farmed and for fifteen years was in business as a saw mill operator and was in the flour mill business for nine years. In his career he has shown good business judgment, the ability to handle practical affairs and deal with men. In April, 1922, he received his first commission as postmaster of Oakland City, and in 1926 was appointed for another term.

Mr. Butcher married in Oakland City Miss Ora J. Duncan, daughter of James and Isabell (Richardson) Duncan. Her people were representatives of one of the pioneer families of Gibson County. To their marriage were born four children, Edith, Ethel, Haskell and Russell. Edith, now deceased, was the wife of Howard Kilpatrick, and left two children, Wayne and Maxine Kilpatrick. Ethel married Nolen Langford, and they have no children. Haskell is at home. Russell married Helena Johnson and they have two boys, Jack and Paul. All live in Oakland City. Both of Mr. Butcher's sons were with the colors during the World war. Mr. Butcher is a Republican in politics and leans to the Methodist Church. He is a York Rite Mason and belongs to the Shrine. For four years he was a member of the town board of Oakland City, and always a booster for the town.

INDIANA ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS OF AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT Vol. 3
By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931


ALBERT HERMAN SCHAAF, one of the outstanding realtors of Fort Wayne, former president of the Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce, and a leader in numerous civic undertakings of an important nature, was awarded the Optimist civic trophy in 1928, being chosen from among thirteen contestants. This trophy was given annually by the Optimist Club for recognized outstanding civic service benefiting the community during the year. He is a native son of the city, having been born at Fort Wayne, Indiana, March 14, 1884, a son of Rev. Carl Schaaf, D. D., and his wife, Anna Margaret Schaaf.

Perhaps no better idea of what Albert H. Schaaf has accomplished for Fort Wayne can be given than to quote from the letter of Judge Townsend, which placed him in nomination, and was published in a local newspaper of that period:

"A little less than forty-five years ago there was born to a prominent Fort Wayne minister and his wife in our city a son. This child grew up in culture, refinement, and an atmosphere of service that such parentage and such a profession assures.

"He made a brilliant record throughout his school career, receiving special recognition in high school, Leland Stanford University and Cornell University. It is to his credit that he worked his way through these institutions.

"More than fifteen years ago Mr. Schaaf became interested in serving his city by the development of unattractive tracts of land into beauty spots for residential sections in Fort Wayne.

"He determined to make the real estate projects which he undertook protect the owners of property by including restrictions of various kinds that insure the subdivision's residents against the encroachment of business, the destruction of trees, the building of houses too close together, the unsightly grading of lots which would detract from the beauty of the general topography of the landscape and against the building of inferior homes that would depreciate the value of the property next door.

"These things he has accomplished through the company of which he is president and general manager. These subdivisipns are Arcadia Court, Englewood Court, Oakdale Drive, Harrison Hill and South Wood Park.

"He not only has served the thousands of people who reside in these beautiful restricted home sections, but he has served the entire city by giving to it these beauty spots of which all are proud."

Carl W. Rothert wrote of him, and extracts from his letter were also read and later published. After citing the part which Mr. Schaaf played in the formation of the civic council, which has for its purpose the correlation of the work of the various civic clubs and organizations, and in the establishment of the Fort Wayne Industrial Commission, which played a large part in bringing a number of substantial industrial plants to Fort Wayne, he wrote:

"The Chamber of Commerce Building, considered one of the finest structures of its type in the country, is in a very real sense a monument to his vision, his striving and his able management."

Further on Mr. Rothert wrote:

"Of his varied activities his service through the Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce is probably the most outstanding. He served as president of this organization for three years, the longest term of service ever rendered by a president of the organization. During his administration he saw the organization more than double its membership, emerge from antiquated rented quarters into a magnificent building of its own and widened the scope of its influence and activity to a point previously undreamed of. Much of this growth was directly due to my candidate's personal efforts as president of the organization."

Another man back of Mr. Schaaf in the contest, David N. Foster, wrote in part:

"I want to particularly refer to his work in the beautification of our city. Blot out the accomplishments of Albert Schaaf in that direction and you would hardly be able to recognize Fort Wayne as she appears today. River bank acquisition and improvement, playgrounds and the extension of our park system have had no more persistent and effective advocate than he. Coming generations will forever enjoy the benefits of his splendid leadership for a better, happier and more beautiful Fort Wayne."

H. Francis James wrote in part of Mr. Schaaf:

"From the very first inception of enlarging the scope of the local art school Mr. Schaaf has lent his whole-hearted support and influence. He was chosen by reason of his broad vision and striking personality, his magnetism and directing ability, as the first president of the Fort Wayne Art School and Museum Association in its new quarters, corner of West Barry and Rockhill streets. For two years he served in a most efficient and remarkable manner, continuing his interest just as strongly after that two-year period. Without his sympathetic influence and cool judgment it is doubtful if the school could have lived through its recent struggles.

"At the time Mr. Schaaf was elected president, a great experiment was to be carried out to maintain an art school - bring out inherent talent in those feeling the desire to create; to train high-school graduates to become art teachers, to eventually work hand in hand with the public-school children in giving them advantages to study fine works of art, and to place this necessary privilege before all the citizens of Fort Wayne.

"The expenses were always greater than the income; all students were given instruction and advantages costing three times the price of their tuition; exhibits were featured without expectation of making sales that would defray expenses, and privileges were given children in the Saturday morning classes and patrons who frequented the gallery, with the idea in mind to give more than value received.

"Through the influence of Mr. Schaaf the city became interested, the business men have responded in showing interest in the Business Men's Art Club; the children of public schools now come to listen to the gallery talks given by the director of the school during school hours; and the possibility of the city itself becoming interested is almost assured." In short, to emphasize the above Mr. Schaaf is a builder of Greater Fort Wayne; the creator of some of the city's most beautiful and artistic residential show places, and a clear-thinking, self-sacrificing leader and worker in all of Fort Wayne's most important civic undertakings. He does big things in a big way, with such a degree of apparent ease that many times the credit for their accomplishment goes to other men.

As has always been the case, the parents of Mr. Schaaf played an important part in the formation of his character, and the development of his latent powers. His father was for nineteen years pastor of Saint John's Reformed Church of Fort Wayne, and, although a native of Germany, did much of his intellectual training after he came to this country, being a graduate of Heidelberg College, Tiffin, Ohio. In the years that followed he became an active leader of his denomination. While serving as president of his synod, he took a prominent part in securing for Fort Wayne the Orphan Home of the Reformed Church in America, which institution is located north- east of Fort Wayne, a short distance beyond the city limits.

Albert H. Schaaf was the honor student of the Fort Wayne High School, class 1902, which gave to him the distinction of being valedictorian, and he entered Cornell University in the fall, and four years thereafter was graduated and received his degree of Master in Engineering. He took his junior years at Leland Stanford University and he also took work during a summer session of the University of Michigan. At Cornell he was a member of various debating teams, and had the honor of speaking on the Stewart L. Woodford stage during his senior year.

Upon his return to Fort Wayne he spent a brief period in the manufacturing field, but it was not untIl he entered upon real estate development that he found his life work. From the first he has been heart and soul in all lines of development work, and was first associated with Frank H. Hilgeman now a resident of Phoenix Arizona

The first realty development venture with which Mr. Schaaf was connected illustrates an entirely new idea, that of creating ideal residence districts in Fort Wayne, and he named it Arcadia Court. This was the forerunner of others, large, modern home places, including Englewood Court, Oakdale Drive, Harrison Hill, Beverly Heights, and various sections of Southwood Park, which were created through his vision, courage and sublime faith in Fort Wayne, coupled with a knowledge of men and a desire to serve them in accordance with the spirit of the Golden Rule.

Today M. Schaaf has a real estate office, divided into departments, and thirty people are given steady employment. The public owes a heavy debt to the modern realtor for the manner in which the business has been elevated to a high plane and developing methods by means of which people of modest means may own their own homes and, because of this, become better citizens of the community in which they have solid interests. As a whole no man of Fort Wayne deserves greater credit for this happy condition than Albert H: Schaaf.

In 1927 Mr. Schaaf was elected president of the Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce, and he was returned for a second and third term. During his incumbency of the office momentous projects were either inaugurated or completed. The first one was the drive for funds to erect a suitable building to house the Chamber of Commerce, of which he was general chairman of the committee. More than the required amount was raised, and the committee selected a suitable site and the present magnificent building was erected. He was chosen as secretary of the Greater Fort Wayne Development Corporation, as well as its general manager. This company was organized to carry out the contract made by the Chamber of Commerce with the International Harvester Company, as a result of which the mammoth motor truck plant of this company was brought to Fort Wayne. The organization is of a civic nature, the stockholders working as public-spirited citizens to leave nothing undone which would make certain the building of the plant, and furnishing adequate accommodations for the numerous workers. The Historical Pageant was also promoted during his administrations, which under the name of "The Call of the Rivers," attracted state-wide notice.

Mr. Schaaf was a pioneer advocate of the city planning and zoning, and was one of a group of Fort Wayne men who visited the largest cities of Indiana in the interest of the adoption of the present state law on this important subject. That he is a firm believer in the wisdom, as well as the necessity of widening the streets, is shown in his action in erecting the new Hilgeman & Schaaf Building on the line of the then proposed widening of Clinton Street, which was later consummated. Mr. Schaaf has served as president of the Fort Wayne Real Estate board, and also a director; as vice president of the Indiana Real Estate Association; as vice president of the National Association of Real Estate Boards, and as a member of important committees last named. He has been vice president and a director of the Rotary Club, and a director of the Quest Club. For years he has been a supporter of the Young Men's Christian Association, the Izaak Walton League, the Hoosier Auto Association, and he holds membership in the Fort Wayne Country Club. His work with reference to the Fort Wayne Art School and Museum has already been spoken of, and he still is one of its directors. He has always been interested in community chest campaigns, and he has been on the executive committee having them in charge; he is a director of the Fort Wayne Anti-Tuberculosis League. During the World war he participated actively in the Liberty Loan, War Savings Stamp, Young Men's Christian Association, Red Cross and other money-raising campaigns for war purposes.

In 1910 Mr. Schaaf married Miss Bertha M. Hart, of Fort Wayne, a daughter of George Hart. Four children have been born to them, namely: Carl Hart, Phyllis Anne, Samuel and Albert, Junior. The new Schaaf residence, on Crestwood Drive, in a tree-covered section of Southwood Park, is of the handsomest and most artistic homes in Fort Wayne.

INDIANA ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS OF AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT Vol. 3
By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931


MAX IRMSCHER. In 1883 there arrived from Germany an immigrant lad, Max Irmscher, seventeen years of age and with only ordinary educational advantages, but fired with ambition, filled with the spirit of adventure and attracted by the messages of friends who had already made the crossing and were enjoying the prosperity of America's hospitable soil. Forty-three years later this same Max Irmscher, having become one of the leading builders and citizens of Fort Wayne, visited the scenes of his boyhood, and expressed no regret in having made his momentous if somewhat impetuous youthful decision.

It was in 1883 that Mr. Irmscher landed at old Castle Garden, New York City, whence he made his way westward until taking up his permanent residence at Fort Wayne. The circumstance of his coming brings up the oft-repeated question as how it happened that Fort Wayne is the home of so many substantial citizens of German birth or parentage. Briefly the answer is as follows: The first German citizen who was a follower of the teachings of Martin Luther to settle at Fort Wayne was Henry Rudisill, representative of the property interests of John T. Barr, one of the original proprietors of the town of Fort Wayne. Shortly after his arrival, in 1829, in order to implant a strong church of the Lutheran faith and at the same time attract a stable, industrious type of people, he communicated with the immigration officials of the Government and arrangements were made whereby those who stopped at New York City, from the Atlantic boats, and were undecided as to their American destination, be advised that the town of Fort Wayne, in the (then) western State of Indiana, would welcome them greatly, and that, best of all, they would find there a settlement of their own people. Thus from the early '30s until today a strong element of German-born people and their descendants have formed a large percentage of Fort Wayne's population, and the Lutheran Church, with its Concordia College, has been a permanently influential factor in the city's religious, educational and cultural life. Thus Mr. Irmscher, following the travel route of a line of predecessors, who had been "making a bee-line" for Fort Wayne for more than half a century, found the Hoosier town a congenial and inviting place in which a man of ability and energy could achieve success. That he took advantage of his opportunities is proved by the many beautiful and stately structures which tell of his genius as a building contractor and as head of Max Irmscher & Sons, one of the leading construction companies of the State of Indiana.

Mr. Irmscher was born in Saxony, Germany, April 30, 1866, and is a son of Gottfried and Augusta Irmscher, farming people. He attended school until he was fourteen years of age and then entered upon an apprenticeship to the blacksmith trade. During the three years in which he was thus engaged his thoughts frequently turned toward America, with the result already , After following blacksmithing for about six months Mr. Irmscher began to learn the trade brick mason and this soon led him into his present business of independent contracting for the construction of brick buildings and other types of structures. His business expanded and in the course of time he became associated in the establishment of the Fort Wayne Brick & Tile Company, of which important enterprise he became vice president later president, which position he still holds. Among the outstanding which proclaim Max Irmscher & Sons as real builders of "Great Fort Wayne" are the Mizpah Shrine Temple, the First National Bank Building, the Freiburger Building, the Jefferson School, the Concordia Lutheran Church, the Riegel Building, the Harmas School the Third Presbyterian Church, the Wolf & Dessauer Building, Indiana Hotel and Emboyd Theater, Paramount Theater and many others which add to the beauty and substantiality of the city. Among his fellow contractors Mr. Irmscher is held in high esteem, a fact that is shown by his election to serve in several offices in connection with the Indiana Builders Association, including that of president. He has also served as president of the Fort Wayne Builders Exchange and in other capacities. He is an active member of the industrial bureau of the Chamber of Commerce, is a prominent figure in the Fort Wayne Optimist Club, and supports the good work of the Fort Wayne-Allen County Historical Society. He was one of the workers for the success of the fund-raising campaign for the establishment of the City's modern Young Men's Christian Association. During the World war period he gave active cooperation to the success of the Liberty Loan and other fund-raising campaigns. Mr. Irmscher is president of the Fort Wayne Belting & Supply Company, and a director of the Lincoln Trust Company and the old Fort Wayne Supply Company.

On December 19, 1889, Mr. Irmscher was united in marriage with Miss Sophia Heger, of Fort Wayne, and to this union there have been born seven children: George, Arthur P., Max Jr.; Hulda, the wife of F. L. Fletemeyer, of Detroit, Michigan; Malinda, the wife of Clarence Figel, of Detroit; Martha, the wife of Ervin Deister, of Fort Wayne; and Sophia, the wife of Emil Deister, of this city. Mr. and Mrs. Irmscher are members of St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church, of which parish Mr. Irmscher has served as a trustee since 1916.

INDIANA ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS OF AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT Vol. 3
By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931


Deb Murray