Miami County, Ohio Genealogical Researchers -- Sponsored by the Computerized Heritage Association


    We marvel at the success of the native American, who knows the manners, the language, the customs and the business methods of the country and who works his way upward from limited circumstances to affluence, but when a man of foreign birth seeks a home in the new world and rises by his own efforts to a commanding position still greater credit is due him, for he has greater difficulties to overcome, being unfamiliar with the ways of his adopted home. Mr. Bohlender is one of the valued citizens that the fatherland has furnished to the new world. He was born in Bavaria, on the 1st of February, 1838, and in 1847 came to America with his parents, George and Mary Bohlender, who having crossed the briny deep made their way to Cincinnati and on to Dayton, Ohio, in which locality they remained for a year. The father operated a small farm north of the city and his son John, then sixteen years of age, went to Cincinnati to learn the _______sic_______ trade. His brother, Peter, then a lad of only eleven years, accompanied him and was employed at stripping tobacco. In this way he earned his first money, obtaining thereby twenty or thirty dollars. Subsequently he was employed by George Heikes, who resided three miles north of Dayton, where he was engaged in the nursery business. Mr. Heikes was the oldest nurseryman of the state, and Mr. Bohlender remained in his service for nine years, during which time he thorough1y mastered the business and obtained a comprehensive and accurate knowledge of the needs of plant life. Subsequently he worked for Jake Wampler, of Wolf Creek.

    In 1868 Mr. Bohlender began business for himself, beginning operations four miles northwest of Dayton. He afterward went to Pike county, Ohio, where he remained three years, and in 1881 he came to Bethel township, where he has since remained. He has ninety-four acres of land and has made extensive improvements upon his property. His annual sales amount to about twenty-five thousand dollars and he deals with both wholesale and retail trade, carrying all kinds of fruit, garden and ornamental trees. The results attending his efforts have been very satisfactory, and he is now a recognized leader in his line in central Ohio. He is also a stockholder in other companies, including The Farmers' Nursery Company, the Albaugh Company and the Miami Fruit Company.

    Mr. Bohlender was married, in 1864, to Miss Anna Belle Elmer, who resided near Covington, Miami county. The following children have been born to them: Thomas, who is now engaged in fruit growing in California; Edmund, a practicing physician of Dayton; Howard, a jeweler-smith in Dayton; Fletcher, who assists his father in the nursery business; Virgie, wife of Harry Kyle, of Greenville, and Ivy, who is now in school. In matters of national importance Mr. Bohlender supports the Republican party, but at local elections, where no issue is involved, he casts his vote independently, regarding rather the capabilities of the man than his political affiliation. From a little German home across the sea he made his way to the new world, and at the early age of eleven years entered upon his business career, winning most creditable success, which is not the outcome of propitious circumstances, but the honest reward of labor, good management, ambition and energy without which qualities no man can win prosperity.

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