Harold J. Schenck, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Harold J. Schenck

HAROLD J. SCHENCK. Although both Harold J. Schenck's father and his grandfather were among the early settlers of Porter county, yet he is not a native of Indiana, but of the state of Michigan, the place of his birth being Saugatuck, and the date March 16, 1866. John Schenck, his grandfather, came to Indiana from Erie county, New York, in the year 1850, and located in Porter county. He bought the old Joe Brown farm and lived upon it until his death. His son, Benjamin F. Schenck, was twenty-two at the time when his family moved to this county, and he accompanied them. After a brief time on the farm in Washington township, Benjamin Schenck moved into Valparaiso and was there engaged in the mercantile business with Samuel S. Skinner. They conducted a successful establishment until they were burned out. Mr. Schenck was a leader in the business of the city. He was one of the company who originated the Valparaiso First National Bank, and he was the first president of that institution. He later moved to Saugatuck, Michigan, and there engaged in the lumber and milling business. Though his business was successful, it was not fortunate, for flood and fire destroyed all his property, and he was obliged to begin over again just as he was beginning to look forward to comparative ease. In 1866 he returned to Porter county and again took up his residence in Valparaiso, where eight years later he died, at the early age of forty-three. Not only was Mr. Schenck a practical man of business, but he had a genius for mechanics, and invented some farm utensils. He was twice married; his first wife was Anna Ritter, of Porter county, who lived only a year and a half after her marriage. The mother of Harold Schenck and his brother and sister, was formerly Miss Ruth Winspear. She was a native of Yorkshire, England, and it was here that she died in 1911, on February 5th. Mr. Harold Schenck's sister, Grace, died in March, 1892. His brother, Fayette, is still living. Harold was the youngest of the family and at the time of his arrival in Valparaiso was about six months old.

After finishing the high school of the city, Mr. Schenck entered the law school of the Valparaiso Normal, and when he had completed the course began the practice of the profession in this same city, which has been his home and the scene of his activities ever since. In addition to his legal business he is engaged in the abstract and title business and deals extensively in real estate.

Mr. Schenck's family consists of his wife, Mary (Dinger) Schenck, and two children, the offspring of a former marriage.

Politically Mr. Schenck is identified with the Republican party, and as he is an eminently public spirited citizen, his adherence to the party is something more than a form. He is an active worker for the advancement of the principles in which he believes, and a man to whom the public welfare cannot be a matter of indifference. Fraternally he is numbered in the order of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Chequeuk Lodge, No. 56, and Mount Pisgah Encampment, No. 107. He has spent his life in Valparaiso, and has shared in her prosperity by contributing his successful enterprise to her upbuilding.

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: 696-697

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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