Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- September 13, 1890Emil Dietzsch
Chicago his lost one of its most illustrious and popular Germans, one who undoubtedly anticipated a long life, because of his virility. Several weeks ago he fell on the steps of the County Building, injuring his head, and after suffering severely he died from the after effects.
Emil Dietzsch was born April seventh, 1829, at Edenkoben, in the Bavarian Rheinpfalz, Germany. He obtained a thorough education at a Gymnasium, (German form of advanced high school quasi University), studied the elememtary apothecary's course as prescribed in his native district, studied pharmacy and its allied sciences at the University of Monacco (Muenchen), and became Provisor in drug stores, after his successful examination. We find him, a youth of twenty years, actively participating in the political constitutional reforms of the government, for the betterment of his homeland. He then obtained a position as provisor with one of the foremost apothecaries of Stuttgart. In 1853, Mr. Dietzsch emigrated to America. He eventually came to Chicago, then 2to Burlington, Iowa, where he was active in his chosen field. He returned to this city, opening a garden restaurant in the vicinity of Clark and Chestnut Streets, which was still a prairie in those days. At this period he became known through his humorous poems about local conditions and personages. Soon after, he owned a drug store on Blue Island Avenue and later acquired a partnership in a larger establishment, at the corner of Clark and Kinzie Streets.
At the time of the Chicago holocaust of 1871 he was a wine merchant. His business perished. In 1874, the Populist party proposed him as candidate for coroner. He was elected and re-elected, two years later, by a great majority. He came to the apex of his fortune during that year. Later, fortune proved less liberal. For several years he was Deputy Sheriff, managed a drug store for a brief interval at the corner of Clark and Ohio Streets, became manager of the great Kern restaurant, and finally held a position in the County Clerk's office. However, Emil Dietzsch's importance to Chicago is not found so much in his various business and official activities, as in his literary pursuits and as a public speaker. For many years he was one of the most popular 3orators, and was welcomed as a participant in the singing fraternities. During these occasions his homespun witicism proved most auspicious. As author, he expressed himself in poetry and prose. He was most successful, however, in his forceful, humorous poems written in the high, unadulterated, German language, and his native southern dialect.
But even in his serious poetical creations we find valuable gems, which brought him the honor and pleasure of notice from the famous Johannes Scherr who published many selections in the latest edition of the "Gallery of the World's Literature". Among his prosaic works, the History of Chicago's Germanism is most valuable.
Dietzsch was a contributor to the German-American press for years, also Puck and the Sunday edition of the Illinois Staats Zeitung. For a short time he published a humorous paper of his own. This was twenty-one years ago.4
He was married twice and happily. His first wife, Ida (Garthe), died in 1875, leaving him four children. He married again in 1878. His second wife, Elizabeth (Schmidt), has been a stauneh helpmate during his affliction. He suffered from inflammation of the nerves of his hip. He left his widow and two young children.
Although Dietzsch never visited his native hills, and had not seen them for thirty-seven long years he always professed intense nostalgia, even to his last, fleeting breath. He remained a genuine Pfaelzer (Bavarian), a true blooded representative of that jovial German people. He predicted the rise of a future Germany in his collection of poems titled, "Strength and Matter".
IV, II A 2, II B 1 e, II B 2 d 1, II B 2 d 3, III A, III H
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