Jefferson County Historical Society

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Michael Ostertag is a native of Grosselfingen, Prussia, and was born in
1831. He is a son of Conrad and Ann Mary (Ostertag) Ostertag, the former 
of whom, a farmer by occupation, was born in 1776 and died in 1834; the 
latter was born in 1777 and died in 1832.  Of the seventeen children 
born to them Michael is the youngest and the only survivor. His parents 
both dying when he was very young, he lived with an uncle a few years, 
and then was taken to Hechingen, where he resided until his fifteenth 
year with his aunt, Judith Slehle; he afterward clerked in a store in 
Stuttgart, and in 1852 left his native country and immigrated to America, 
first locating in St. Louis, where he engaged in merchandising.  In 1871 
he moved to Frumet Mines, Jefferson County, where he kept a boarding 
house until 1872, when he came to De Soto and acted as proprietor of the 
Jefferson House until 1881; he then sold out and his wife established the 
present business here, dealing in dry goods, notions and jewelry. In 
November, 1853, he married Miss Chresentia Meyer, who was born in Prussia 
in 1835.  They became the parents of fourteen children, eight of whom died 
in infancy, and but five of whom are still living: Magdelena (wife of 
Philip Schaub), Henry (a twin to Magdelena died October 4, 1878, and was 
buried on his twenty third birthday), Louisa, Katie, Christian Michael 
(died June 23, 1871, aged six years), Emily and Clara.  Mr. Ostertag is 
one of the highly esteemed citizens of De Soto.  He is a Republican in 
politics and a member of the D.O.H. The family are members of the Roman 
Catholic Church.