John H. Dibbern, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of John H. Dibbern

JOHN H. DIBBERN. Among the foreign-born citizens of Porter county whose thrifty industry and substantial qualities of character have contributed to the welfare and prosperous development of this region during the past half century, one most deserving of honor and respect for his accomplishments is Mr. John H. Dibbern, of Porter township.

Mr. Dibbern was born in Holland, November 18, 1861, and was the second in a family of six children, three sons and three daughters, whose parents were George and Katherine (Cook) Dibbern. Of the three children who are still living the oldest is Mamie, the wife of Len Burkhart, a farmer of this county, and Henry, the youngest, is in the employ of the City Railway Company at Michigan City. The father of this family, who was born in Holland in 1843 and died in this county in 1898, was reared in his native land and married, and in 1868 brought his family to America to enjoy the blessings of a republic and a land of opportunities. The voyage in the sailing vessel lasted for six weeks, and from New York they came on directly to Porter county. After a residence of three years in Valparaiso they moved to a farm three miles northeast of town, where the father was engaged in farming for seven years. He naturalized as a citizen of this country, and throughout his residence voted the Republican ticket. The mother was also born in 1843, and passed away in April, 1912, both she and her husband being buried in this county.

John H. Dibbern was seven years old when the family took up residence in Porter county, and he received a brief education in the common schools. He is both a self-educated and self-made man, and from an early age has depended on his own resources for his advancement. When he was seventeen years old he began working for wages, and was thus employed for five years until he returned home and engaged in the management of the home place. He is fully experienced in hard work and economy, and these were the factors that gave him his start in life.

On February 1, 1889, :Mr. Dibbern was married to Miss Cora Clites, who became the mother of two children, one of whom is now deceased. The daughter Alice Wilhelmina, received her education first in the common schools and then in the University of Valparaiso, where she took the commercial course and stenography and bookkeeping. She now makes her home with her parents. Mrs. Dibbern's death occurred April 13, 1891, and she now rests in the Boone Grove cemetery. On September 6, 1893, Mr. Dibbern wedded his former wife's sister, Miss Nora Clites. One of their two sons is deceased, and the other is William George, who after his education in the common schools returned home and took up the training which has made him a practical and progressive agriculturist, and he now carries the chief burden in the management of the home farm. Mrs. Nora Dibbern was born in Porter county, September 7, 1871, the daughter of William H. and Dell (Clifford) Clites. There were eleven children in the family, five sons and six daughters, and the four now living are: -- Ella, the wife of Charles Klinger, of Bourbon, Indiana; Mrs. Dibbern; Spencer, who is married and is one of the prosperous farmers in this county; and Charles, a farm laborer of this county. William H. Clites, the father of this family, was born in Bedford county, Pennsylvania, in 1844, and his death occurred at Boone Grove, April 23, 1900. He became a resident of Porter county in 1851, and ten years later became a soldier of the Civil war, enlisting in Company I of the Fifth Indiana Cavalry. He was under the command of General Burnside and subsequently under General Judah, and later was engaged in guarding prisoners in camp at Chicago. He was of substantial Pennsylvania German ancestry, and for many years was one of the well known farmer citizens of this county. In politics he was a Republican. His wife was a native of Indiana. Their final resting place is at Boone Grove cemetery. Mrs. Dibbern was reared on the home farm in this county, and practically all her life has been spent in Porter and Morgan townships.

Mr. Dibbern's excellent farm of eighty acres is in section 21, Porter township, and with its good buildings and other improvements ranks among the valuable country estates of the township. Beginning life without capital, he has perseveringly and steadily worked for all he has acquired, and with material success has also gained the thorough esteem of all his neighbors and friends. In politics he is a Republican who cast his first vote for James G. Blaine. Fraternally he is affiliated with Camp No. 8730, M. W. A., at Boone Grove. His wife is a member of the Royal Neighbors, No. 5509, at the same place, being vice oracle of the lodge, and the daughter Alice is a charter member and the present assistant marshal of the same organization. Mrs. Dibbern and daughter are members of the Christian church of Boone Grove and are also identified with the work of its Sunday school.

Source: Lewis Publishing Company. 1912. History of Porter County, Indiana: A Narrative Account of its Historical Progress, its People and its Principal Interests. Chicago, Illinois: Lewis Publishing Company. 881 p.
Page(s) in Source: 584-586

This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.

Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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