Biographies from Historical and Biographical Annals by Morton Montgomery

RICK, CHARLES

p. 431

Surnames: RICK, RUTH, WEISER, MADEIRA, AMMON, DUNDORE, TRATE, O'HARA, ARNOLD, NICOLLS, PAULI, MUHLENBERG, WEILE, McCANDLISH

Rick Charles, a veteran of the Civil war who has been living retired in Reading since 1904, was for many years one of the proprietors of Rick Brothers' foundry, also known as the Reading Butt Works. Mr. Rick was born in October, 1840, in Bern township, Berks county, son of Charles and Ellen Louisa (Ruth) Rick, and grandson of John George Rick.

Herman Rick, great-grandfather of Charles, came to America with his parents in the early part of the eighteenth century, being then about twelve years of age, and after receiving his education in the pay schools of Bern township, he engaged in farming, at which he continued for the remainder of his life. Among his children was John George.

John George Rick, son of Herman, married Catherine Weiser, grand-niece of Conrad Weiser. Mr. Rick engaged in farming in Bern township, and became a large land owner and highly respected man. He was a member of the German Reformed Church, was a Whig in politics, and was very patriotic and public-spirited.

Charles Rick, father of Charles, was educated in the primitive schools of his day, and early in life conducted a general store at Centreport and later at Peacock's Locks, coming to Reading in 1841, where he was engaged in a mercantile business and in real estate operations. The latter years of his life were spent in retirement. He died in 1878, and his wife in 1880. They were the parents of the following children: Cyrus, for many years cashier of the Farmers' National Bank, and a member of the firm of Rick Brothers, m. Emma Madeira; John, who died in 1900, was also a member of the firm of Rick Brothers (m. Emma Ammon); Charles; Mary m. Franklin Dundore, of Philadelphia, and had three children - Charles, Frank and Ella; James, of the firm of Rick Brothers, now proprietor of the Rick Knitting Mills of Reading, m. (first) Ellen Trate, and (second) Julia O'Hara, and had five children by the last marriage - James, Edward, Albert, Harrison and Julia; and Ellen m. William A. Arnold, deceased, and had six children - William, John, Franklin, Anna, Ellen and Mary.

Charles Rick was educated in the common schools of his locality, and in 1857 graduated from the old high school. Until the outbreak of the Civil war he clerked in various stores, but in May, 1861, he went to the front, enlisting at Washington, D. C., and was discharged in July, 1861. He then re-enlisted in Company E, 128th Pa. V. I., becoming first sergeant, and was discharged as first lieutenant after nine months service. On his return to Reading, Mr. Rick entered the office of the general superintendent, G. A. Nicolls, of the Reading Railroad as clerk, and continued with that company until 1871, when he resigned to engage in business with his brothers, who had founded, in 1867, the business of Rick Brothers Foundry, or Reading Butt Works. He continued in this business until his retirement in 1904, at which time the firm sold out.

In 1868, Mr. Rick m. Emma A. Pauli, a native of Berks county, daughter of Rev. W. A. Pauli, of the Reformed Church, and to this union there have been born six children: Mary m. F. H. Muhlenberg, and has four children -Hiester H., Charles R., Ernest and Mary; Miss Grace; Mabel m. H. P. Weile, of Reading; Bessie m. Lindsay McCandlish, and has one child, Jane. R.; Miss Florence is at home; and Arthur is a member of the firm of Hutchinson-McCandlish Coal Company, Reading.

Mr. Rick is a member of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States; and of Chandler Lodge, No. 227, F. & A. M. He is a Republican in politics, and in 1874 he was a member of the common council. He is a director of the Charles Evans cemetery, the Reading City Passenger Railroad Company, and the Mount Penn Gravity Railroad.


RICK, CYRUS

p.544

Surnames: RICK, RUTH, WEISER, AMMON, PAUL, DUNDORE, ARNOLD, MADEIRA, SHEPP, SPANG, TRATE, O'HARA

Cyrus Rick, who died at his home in Reading, Pa., in 1895, was one of that city's leading business men, and was for many years well known in the manufacturing circles of Berks county as a member of the foundry firm of Rick Brothers. Mr. Rick was born Sept. 2, 1837, in Bern township, Berks county, son of Charles and Ellen Louisa (Ruth) Rick.

Herman Rick, the great-grandfather of Cyrus, came to this country with his parents in the early part of the eighteenth century, when about twelve years old, and received his education in the pay schools of Bern township, after leaving which he engaged in farming, an occupation which he carried on throughout life.

John George Rick, son of Herman, was also a farmer, and he became a large landowner and influential citizen of Bern township, where all of his life was spent. He and his wife, Catherine Weiser (a grand-niece of Conrad Weiser), were members of the German Reformed church, and in political matters he was a stanch Whig.

Charles Rick, son of John George and father of Cyrus, received his education in the early schools of his native township, after leaving which he engaged in a general merchandise business at Centreport and Peacock's Locks. In 1841 he came to Reading, where he was engaged in mercantile business and in real estate operations for a number of years and where he lived retired the remainder of his life. He died in 1878, and his wife, whose maiden name was Ellen Louise Ruth, in 1880, both in the faith of the German Reformed Church. They were the parents of children as follows: (1) Cyrus. (2) John, who died in 1900, was a member of the firm of Rick Brothers. He married Emma Ammon. (3) Charles, a retired citizen of Reading and veteran of the Civil war, was also a member of the firm. He m. Emma Paul. (4) Mary m. Franklin Dundore, of Philadelphia, and had three children, Charles, Frank and Ella. (5) James is mentioned below. (6) Ellen m. William A. Arnold, deceased, and had six children, William, John, Franklin, Anna, Ellen, and Mary.

Cyrus Rick was educated in the schools of his native place, and at an early age he entered the Farmers' National Bank, of which he later became cashier, becoming widely known in financial circles. On the establishment of the firm of Rick Brothers he was made a member in 1873, and he continued as such until his death, in 1895, in the faith of the Reformed Church.

In 1868 Cyrus Rick m. Emma R. Madeira, daughter of William S. and Rebecca (Shepp) Madeira, and five children were born to this union, four of whom are living; Ella (m. S. K. Spang, and has two children, Emily and Mary), Anna, Mary and Charles.

James Rick, son of Charles and brother of Cyrus, and a prominent business man of Reading, Pa., being at the head of the Rick Knitting Company, was born in Reading in 1844. He was educated in the local schools and served his apprenticeship with one of the large carpenter firms. Later he engaged in pattern-making, and also clerked for the West Reading Iron Company in 1866. In 1867, with his brother John and Franklin Dundore, he engaged in the hardware business under the firm name of Dundore, Rick & Co., their plant being at Third and Buttonwood streets. In 1869 Mr. Dundore withdrew from the firm and sold his interest to Charles Rick, and then the firm changed to Rick Brothers, but the last named did not take an active part. In 1873 one-fourth of the interest was sold to Cyrus Rick, also a brother, as it was the father's wish to have his four sons together in business, but Cyrus never took an active part in the management. In 1904 this property was sold to the Keystone Hardware Company, and leased to the Consolidated Hardware Company. In 1905 Mr. James Rick organized the Rick Knitting Company, and has associated his sons with him in the business. The firm was incorporated in 1906, and has one of the successful industries of the city. The officers are: James Rick, president; Edward Rick, vice-president; James Rick, Jr., secretary and treasurer; and Albert Rick, a member of the board of directors.

Mr. Rick has been twice married. His first wife, Ellen Trate, died in 1881. In 1883 he m. (second) Julia G. O'Hara, and they have had six children, namely: Helen (deceased), James, Jr., Edward, Albert, Julia and Harrison. Mr. Rick and family are members of Calvary Reformed Church, in which he is a deacon. He has always taken an active part in civic affairs, and from 1888 to 1892 served as a member of the board of water commissioners. He is a member of several business and social clubs of Reading, including the Wyomissing, Berkshire and Maiden Creek Fishing Clubs (of which latter he was one of the organizers and has been president).


RICK, GEORGE A.

608

Surnames: RICK, AMMON, DECHANT, WILLITS, CASE, HUNTER

George A. Rick, president of the common branch of the city councils of Reading, is a native of that city whose connection with its business and public life does credit to his birth and ancestry. He is a member of an old Berks county family, being a descendant in the fifth generation from Hermann Rick, the emigrant ancestor of the family, who came to this country in 1712, when twelve years old. From him Mr. Rick traces his line through John George, Charles, and John Rick, the latter for many years a member of the well-known firm of Rick Brothers, manufacturers of tacks and builders' hardware, which was established in the year 1867, and for many years maintained its position as one of the leading industries of the kind in Reading and elsewhere. John Rick married Emma C. Ammon, and to them were born three sons and one daughter : George A., John, Paul A., and Margaret Julia, the daughter dying on September, 1904. Further details concerning the ancestors will be found elsewhere.

George A. Rick was born in Reading, Oct. 23, 1877, and there received his education in the public schools. After his graduation from high school, June 1, 1895, he entered the office of William H. Dechant, civil engineer, with whom he remained until May, 1898, on the 9th of which month he entered the army in the volunteer service. He became a private in Company A (Capt. Samuel Willits) , 4th Regiment ( Col. David Brainerd Case) , Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, serving until Nov. 16, 1898; he was sent to Porto Rico.

Upon his return to Reading after being mustered out of the service, Mr. Rick engaged in the real estate and investment business, which he has continued to the present time. He is a director of the Colonial Trust Company.

In 1906 Mr. Rick was elected to represent his ward in the common branch of the city councils, and in 1908 he was honored with re-election for another two years' term. Immediately following his re-election, in April, 1908, he was elected president of that branch of the city government, and he has occupied the chair ever since. He is a Republican in political sentiment, public-spirited and conscientious in the discharge of his duties, and alive to the needs of his community in which his life has been spent.

On Nov. 12, 1903, Mr. Rick married Margaret Hunter, daughter of John and Marion Hunter, of Alva, Scotland. Mr. and Mrs. Rick have two children, John Hunter and Margaret Marion. Mr. Rick is a Lutheran in religious connection, holding membership in St. Matthew's Evangelical Lutheran Church.


RICK, JOHN.

p. 538 Surnames:
RICK, AMMON, WEISER, MADEIRA, PAULI, DUNDORE, TRATE, O'HARA, ARNOLD, WHITNER

JOHN RICK, one of the Reading's enterprising young business men, who is a member of the firm of C. K. Whitner & Co., was born in 1880, in the city in which he now resides, son of John and Emma (Ammon) Rick.

Herman Rick, great-great-grandfather of John, came to this country with his parents in 1712, being then about twelve years of age. He received his education in the pay schools of Bern township, after leaving which he engaged in farming, an occupation which he carried on throughout life.

John George Rick, son of Herman, was also a farmer, and he became a large land owner and influential citizen of Bern township, where all his life was spent. He and his wife, Catherine Weiser, were members of the Reformed Church, and in political matters he was a stanch Whig.

Charles Rick, the grandfather of John, received his education in the early schools of his native township, after leaving which he engaged in a general store at Centreport and Peacock's Locks, but in 1841 came to Reading where the rest of his life was spent in retirement. He died in the faith of the German Reformed Church in 1878, as did his wife in 1880. Their children were: Cyrus, for many years cashier of the Farmers Bank and a member of the firm of Rick Brothers, m. Emma Madeira; John; Charles, a retired citizen of Reading and veteran of the Civil war, was also a member of the firm, and m. Emma Pauli; Mary m. Franklin Dundore, of Philadelphia, and had three children, - Charles, frank and Ella; James, formerly a member of Rick Brothers and now proprietor of the Rick Knitting Mills, Reading, m. (first) Ellen Trate, and (second) Julia O'Hara, and had five children, James, Edward, Albert, Harrison and Julia, all by the second marriage; and Ellen m. William A. Arnold and had six children, William, John, Franklin, Anna, Ellen and Mary.

John Rick, father of John, was for many years a member of the well-known firm of Rick Brothers, which was established in 1867, and discontinued in 1905. He died in 1900, aged sixty-two years. Mr. Rick married Emma Ammon, and four children were born to them: George, John, Paul and Margaret (deceased).

John Rick was educated in the schools of Reading and later attended a school at Lawrenceville, N. J., after which he took a course at Stoner's Business College, Reading. He served his time at the machinist's trade in the Philadelphia & Reading railroad shops, and in 1905 entered the employ of C. K. Whitner & Co., as clerk, being made a partner in January, 1907. In March, 1905, Mr. Rick married Miss Carrie Whitner, daughter of C. K. Whitner, and two children have been born to this union: Mary Elizabeth and Horace Whitner. Mr. Rick is a member of Reading Lodge, No. 115, B. P. O. E., and the Berkshire Club. His religious connection is with St. Matthew's Lutheran Church.


RICK, JOHN G.

p 1222

Surnames: RICK, WELL, NAHM, CONN, KUERSTEN, BECKER, WEBER

John G. Rick, junior member of the firm of Kuersten & Rick, manufacturers of high-grade hosiery, of Reading, Pa., was born in 1865, in Philadelphia, Pa., son of John G. and Elizabeth (Well) Rick, natives of Germany.

John G. Rick, father of John G., came from Germany to America in 1861, in a sailing vessel, and settled in Philadelphia, where the remainder of his life was spent. In his native country he had carried on weaving as a occupation, but after coming to America he worked as a flange turner in Neaffe & Levy's shipyard, which afterwards became the Cramp shipyard. Mr. Rick died in 1885, aged fifty-four years, while his wife, who survives him, resides at No. 2905 Fairhill street, Philadelphia. The children born to them were: Elizabeth, who died in infancy; John G.; Emma, m. to Charles Nahm; Harry, m. to Elizabeth Conn; and Matilda, single. In religious belief Mr. and Mrs. Rick were Reformed. In politics he was a Democrat. Fraternally Mr. Rick was connected with the Red Men, the I. O. O. F., and the Seven Wise Men.

John G. Rick was educated in the schools of Philadelphia, and at the age of thirteen years entered the employ of Henry Becker & Co., for whom he worked for a period of thirteen years. He was then associated with the Oak Mills Company, for one year, and in 1892 came to Reading as superintendent for Louis Weber & Co., and after this firm dissolved he formed a partnership with Mr. Kuersten. Their first plant was located on Cedar street, above Walnut, but since that time they have removed to their present location, at the corner of Reed and Elm streets. Here they employ 180 men, manufacturing medium and high-grade hosiery, all of which is handled by jobbers.

Mr. Rick married Miss Sarah Conn, and to them there have been born two children: Sarah and John G. Mr. and Mrs. Rick attend the Reformed Church. In politics he is a Republican.


RICK, PAUL A.

p. 1171

Surnames: RICK, AMMON, WEISER, MADEIRA, PAULI, DUNDORE, TRATE, O'HARA, ARNOLD, BINGAMAN

Paul A Rick, a well-known young business man of Reading, Pa., who resides at No. 201 Douglas street, was born in 1882, in the city of Reading, son of John and Emma C. (Ammon) Rick.

Hermann Rick, the emigrant ancestor of this family, came to this country in 1712, when twelve years old, and received his education in the pay schools, after leaving which he engaged in a general store business for some time, but later took up agricultural pursuits, which he made his life work.

John George Rick, son of Hermann, was also a farmer, and became a large land owner of Bern township, where he and his wife, Catharine Weiser, were members of the Reformed Church. In politics he was a stanch Whig.

Charles Rick, son of John George, and grandfather of Paul, received his education in the primitive schools, and after completing his studies engaged in a general store business at Centreport and Peacock's Locks. In 1841 he located in Reading, where the rest of his life was spent. He died in 1878, and his wife in 1880, both in the faith of the German Reformed Church. Picture of Cyrus RickTheir children were: Cyrus, for many years cashier of the Farmers' Bank and a member of the firm of Rick Brothers, m. Emma Madeira; John is mentioned below ; Charles, a retired citizen of Reading and veteran of the Civil war, who was also a member of the firm of Rick Brothers, m. Emma Pauli ; Mary, m. Franklin Dundore, of Philadelphia, and had three children : James, formerly a member of Rick Brothers and now proprietor of the Rick Knitting Mills of Reading, m. (first) Ellen Trate and (second) Julia O' Hara ; and Ellen m. William A. Arnold.

John Rick, the father of Paul A., was for many years a member of the well-known firm of Rick Brothers, which was established in 1867. He died in 1900, aged sixty-two years. He married Emma C. Ammon, and had three sons and one daughter : George, John, Paul A. and Margaret Julia (who died in September, 1904).

Paul A. Rick attended the public schools of Reading, and was graduated from the Inter-State Commercial College in 1899. He then accepted a position as bookkeeper with the Farmers' National Bank of Reading, and in this connection he has continued to the present time.

In 1902 Mr. Rick married Pearl S. Bingaman, daughter of Thomas and Martha Bingaman, and two children have been born to them : Charlotte A. and John T. Mr. and Mrs.. Rick are members of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church. In politics he is a Republican.


RICK, WILLIAM

p. 552

Surnames: RICK, BEYERLE, DEPPEN, FISHER, HEIGHOLD, HUYETT, KLINE, LAWSHE, NICOLLS, REINOEHL, SCHAFFNER, SHOMO, STAMM, YEAGER

William Rick, mayor of Reading for the term of 1908-11, was born July 28, 1875, at the village of Millersburg, Bethel township, Berks county. He acquired his preliminary education in the local schools and at the Keystone State Normal School, after which he entered Muhlenberg College at Allentown, Pa., and remaining there three years, was graduated in June, 1893. He then began the study of law by registering as a student in the law office of Jacobs & Keiser, at Reading, and on Nov. 11, 1896, was regularly admitted to practice before the courts of Berks county. He then went to the Yale Law School, and graduated in 1897. Immediately beginning active practice, he has continued with increasing success until the present time, his offices being at No. 526 Court street. Shortly after entering upon his legal practice, he identified himself with the Republican party, and in appreciation of his services was given the appointment of deputy controller of Berks county by Joseph N. Shomo, who was appointed on May 22, 1901, by the Governor, as the first controller of the county, a position which he filled until Jan. 6, 1902. In 1904, in the organization of the school board of that year, Mr. Rick was elected school solicitor of the Reading school district, and served for the term of 1904-'07.

In 1908 Mr. Rick was nominated for mayor of Reading on the Republican ticket, being chosen in preference to several other candidates. His Democratic opponent was Edward Yeager, who had been Mayor three years before, and who was popular with the community. A vigorous campaign was waged, Mr. Rick conducting much of it himself and making numerous speeches. Though Reading was normally Democratic by about 500, Mr. Rick was triumphantly elected mayor by upwards of 1,800 majority, being the youngest candidate ever elected to that position. Shortly before his inauguration he formed a law partnership with Frederick W. Nicolls, under the title of Rick & Nicolls, and, though he spent part of his time in attending to his law business, devoted himself principally to the intricate municipal affairs of the city. One of the most remarkable local improvements during his term was the completion of the Spring street subway, connecting the northeastern section of the city with the north central, and greatly expediting traffic and transportation which had formerly been almost impossible between these districts except by a circuitous route.

Mr. Rick has always had a good business head, and it is as a business lawyer, seeing the common sense side of the law and discarding its technicalities and inequalities, that he has been particularly successful. His conduct of city affairs thus far has also been on a strictly business basis, as well as of absolute integrity. His business capacity is evidenced by his connection with a number of local enterprises, being a director of the Berks County Trust Company, the American Casualty Company, the Reading Wood Pulley Company, and the Reading Saddle and Manufacturing Company.

Mr. Rick, both as lawyer and public officer, has always been animated by a keen desire to do his full duty to his clients and to his constituents, and nothing is too laborious or unpleasant for him to undertake in attaining this end. His courtesy and patience are inexhaustible, and if his resentment is ever aroused, it means that he has endured until endurance is no longer right, and that the offender has been guilty of some utterly indefensible action.

In 1899 Mr. Rick was married to Carrie B. Lawshe, daughter of Abner Lawshe, merchant at Reading, and they have one daughter, Margaret.

Mr. Rick's father was Garrick Mallery Fisher Rick. He was born June 15, 1831, in Penn township, at Centreville, now Garfield. He attended the local schools during his boyhood, and also a school in Chester county. Upon his return home he was employed on a farm for a number of years, and then entered a general store at Rehrersburg for the purpose of learning the mercantile business, and in 1855 he embarked in business for himself. He continued at Rehrersburg until 1860, and then moved to Millersburg, where he carried on a large general store with increasing success until 1884, when he retired, and lived in retirement until his decease Oct. 10, 1908. For forty years he was prominently identified with the business, financial and political affairs of his section of the county, and exerted much influence in the community. Upon his retirement from business, he was succeeded in his business by his son, John George Rick. He was an active member of the Lutheran Church for many years, and in politics was a staunch Republican. He officiated as postmaster of Millersburg for twenty-five years. He married Sarah Ann Beyerle, daughter of Dr. George Beyerle, of Bernville. They had three children: John George (m. to Clara Kline); Mary (m. to Harry A. Reinoehl, a lumber merchant at Lebanon, Pa.); and William, the subject of this sketch.

Mr. Rick's grandfather was John Rick, who carried on a store and tannery at Centreville for many years. He died in 1839, aged thirty-nine years. He married Elizabeth Fisher, by whom he had eight children: Louisa (m. to William Schaffner); Fayetta (m. to John Heighold); Garrick M. F. (m. to Sarah Beyerle); Emma M. (m. to Cornelius Stamm); Lydia (m. to Amos Huyett); John; Sidney, and George (m. to Mary Ann Deppen).


RICKENBACH, LEVI P.

p. 1026

Surnames: RICKENBACH, PHILLIPS, GAMBLER, HAINES, KESTNER, RINGLER, BUNDT, KURTZ, FISHER, AHRENS, BUSHONG, MOSER , KOENIG, ROBERTSON

Levi P. Rickenbach, representing an old established family of Berks county, was born in Ontelaunee township in 1838, son of Jonathan and Mary (Phillips) Rickenbach.

John Rickenbach, the paternal grandfather, was a farmer and landowner, whose whole life was given to agricultural pursuits and who died on his farm at the age of eighty-six years. His children were: Sallie, Phoebe, Elizabeth, Nancy, Franie, Benneville, John and Jonathan.

Jonathan Rickenbach was born on his father's homestead in 1803, was reared to a farmer's life. He became the owner of the home place and like his father followed farming all his life. His death occurred in his eightieth year. He was twice married. His first wife was Mary, daughter of Sebastian Phillips, and she died when only thirty-five years old, leaving three children, namely: Rebecca, m. to the late James Gambler, and now residing at West Leesport, Berks county ; Elmira, Mrs. John Haines, of the same place ; and Levi P. The second wife was Annie Kestner, who died at the age of eighty-six and to this union were born one son and two daughters, as follows : Silas M., deceased, m. Mary Ringler, and is a wholesale grocer on North Eighth street ; Salome m. the late Llewellyn Bundt, of Leesport, and Lanita m. Samuel Kurtz, and resides at Springmont.

Levi P. Rickenbach passed his boyhood like most farmer's sons, helping on the farm and going to the district school. When old enough to learn a trade he went to work under John Fisher at carpentry, and later was employed by Jacob Ahrens, who became his father-in law. In 1866 Mr. Rickenbach came to Reading and worked fifteen years with Mr. Bushong, thirteen with David Moser, later with various contractors and builders of the city. He is a most reliable and efficient workman and his services are always in great demand by the builders of the city.

Mr. Rickenbach married in 1862 Miss Caroline Ahrens, daughter of Jacob and Barbara (Koenig) Ahrens, a union which was blessed with three sons. Oscar A., the oldest, a molder by occupation, resides at home. Jonathan A. is a plater, and is still a resident of Reading. L. Luther, a musician, teaches the violin and mandolin and plays with the Philharmonic Band of Reading, his instrument being the clarinet. He married Lottie Robertson and lives in his father's home, No. 141 North Fourth street. Levi P. Rickenbach, while never an active political worker, is yet a strong supporter of the Democratic party. He holds membership in Trinity Lutheran Church.

Henry Ahrens, grandfather of Mrs. Rickenbach, was born in Germany, and came to America when a young man. He was well educated in English and German, and when he came to this country he was brought by a sailor who wished to be taught the German language. When they arrived in America, the sailor died and young Ahrens having no money to return to the Old World, was obliged to remain in America. He later settled in Berks county, where he died.

Last Modified Thursday, 16-Oct-2008 20:56:52 EDT

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