John Manke is an active former Bay View resident who is involved in numerous neighborhood organizations, including the Bay View Historical Society, the Humboldt Park Fourth of July Association and the Shore Shore Farmers Market. He believes Bay View has a fine tradition in its past that we do not want to lose in the future.
On April 27, 1910, Helen Schumacher was born. She lived in a building that used to be at Mitchell St. and Deer Pl. (now E. Otjen St. & S. Logan Ave.) Her grandfather, Fred Schumacher had lived in Janesville, Wisconsin, enlisted into a German regiment of the U.S. Army in St. Louis. Mo. After the Civil War, he moved to Bay View and married a widow (Joannah) who had children, but had some more, including my grandfather, Otto Schumacher. Otto and his siblings were all born in the house on S. Logan Ave. Otto had a grocery store next door to his home, that is still there today. My mother used to help out her parents, Otto and Alma (Denzin) Schumacher in the store.
When she and her family would visit Alma's sister, Erna Denzin Manke, she meet my dad, Harry Manke, who lived next door to Fred and Erna Manke. Fred and Willam Manke split the land on N. Cedarburg Rd. (N. Teutonia Ave.) in North Milwaukee, Town of Granville. August Manke, my great-grandfather owned the land from what now is W. Florist Ave. to approximately W. Mill Rd., and N. Teutonia Ave. to N. 35th St. Over time much of that land was sold off. Henry Rheinhardt bought the southeast portion of the land. Fred and William Manke grew up with their father's greenhouses. William and Clara Manke eventually razed their greenhouses and Clara started to work in the U.S. Post Office. Fred and Erna Manke passed on their greenhouses to their children to run. They had the best carnations in Milwaukee. After time, the competition from Florida became too great of a threat to them. When they widened N. Teutonia Ave. and greatly increased their taxes on their land, it was time to sell their property. They continued farming on family land in Sussex, Wisconsin.
Helen and my father got together and eventually married. It took me many years to figure out how may parents had so many first cousins in common. You could say that they were second cousins of each other. In 1956, my parents divorced and my dad married my mother's first cousin, Lorraine Blank. Her mother was Ida Denzin Hennings and lived in Bay View. My dad died in September of 1962, and my mother in August of 1981. I would like to wish happy birthday to my mother. May she rest in peace.