Mathias Kurscheid, the leading merchant of Leonore, Richland township,
LaSalle county, has passed the greater portion of his forty years in this
county, and, as a citizen of the new town of Leonore and one of her
builders, has made his influence felt in a manner conspicuously substantial
He was born in New York city, in April, 1860, the son of a Rhinelander who came to the United States late in the '50s, and was killed in New York city a few years afterward, while acting as a foreman in one of the sugar factories of that city. His widow survived the shock of his sudden and terrible death but a short time, and young Mathias was left an orphan. He was taken into the home of a relative, with whom, about 1869, he came west to Illinois and located in LaSalle county. It was on a farm in Richland township, this county, that young Kurscheid obtained his first impressions of the serious side of life. As he approached manhood he turned his attention to work at the carpenter's trade, which he followed as a business for several years. His mercantile career began as a clerk for a Mr. White, and later he was with John Linder, in that capacity, in the village of Leonore. In 1889 he embarked in business alone, on a small scale, and to such an extent has his business increased that to-day he is regarded as the leading merchant of the village.
Mr. Kurscheid has identified himself prominently with the growth and progress of his town. At different times he has served as one of its councilmen, and has occupied other places of trust and honor in the management of its affairs. In the spring of 1899 he was chosen at the general election to be the president of the village. He was one of the incorporators of the volunteer fire company of Leonore, and is its clerk; and he was a subscriber to the stock of the Leonore Creamery. Fraternally he is identified with the local camp of Modern Woodmen, of which he is the consul.
In February, 1889, Mr. Kurscheid married Miss Mary Brunsbach, a daughter of August Brunsbach, one of the foremost citizens of Vermilion township, this county, having settled here at an early day.
Extracted 13 Jun 2019 by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois, published in 1900, volume 2, pages 662-663.