Biographical History of Central Kansas, Vol. II, p. 886
published by The Lewis Publishing Co, Chicago & New York, 1902
One of the large land-owners of Rice county is George Cramm, whose possessions aggregate twelve hundred and ninety acres, constituting a very valuable property. For his success in life Mr Cramm deserves great credit, depending entirely upon his own resources, he has realized the value of energy and perseverance in the industrial world, and his close application and unremitting diligence have enabled him to advance steadily to a position of affluence.
A native of the Hoosier state, he was born in Spencer county, Indiana, on the 12 of January, 1845, a son of John Cramm, of that county. The father was a native of Germany, reared and educated there. When a young man he came to the United States and was here married to Louisa Smatch, also a native of the fatherland, where her girlhood days were passed. For two years they resided in Pittsburg, and then removed to Troy, Perry county, Indiana. The father was a cabinet-maker by trade, but after some years he abandoned that pursuit and carried on agricultural interests in Spencer county. His life was a busy and useful one, and was terminated in death when he was eighty-one years of age. He voted with the Republican party and thus supported the principles which he believed were most conducive to good government. He held membership in the Lutheran church and his wife was also identified with the same denomination. She passed away at the age of seventy-seven years. This worthy couple were the parents of five children, three of whom are yet living: Mollis, a resident of Louisville, Kentucky; Mrs Minnie Drushel, of Spencer county, Indiana; and George, whose name begins this review. The two who have passed away are Fred, who died at the age of twelve years, and August, who died at the age of forty-five. He was a veteran of the Civil war, filled official positions in Spencer county, and was one of the most prominent citizens of that portion of Indiana.
On the old family homestead in Spencer county George Cramm was reared, working in the fields through the summer months, while in the winter season he pursued his education in the public schools, gaining a fair knowledge of the branches of English learning which prepare one for the practical duties of a business career. At the age of twenty-one he left the farm and engaged in the manufacture of lumber, having a portable sawmill. At the end of eighteen months he found himself three thousand dollars in debt, but he persevered and soon the tide turned and prosperity attended his efforts. He purchased and sold large tracts of lumber in the south and carried on a prosperous lumber business for some time.
At the age of twenty-six years Mr Cramm married Miss Sophie Suremann, who was a native of Texas but was reared in Spencer county, Indiana, a daughter of Charles Suremann. Her father died in this life in the Lone Star state. After his marriage Mr Cramm made his home in the county of his nativity until 1886, when he resolved to try his fortune in Kansas and came to Rice county, where he purchased his home farm. As the years have passed he has made judicious investments in real estate and is now the owner of very valuable realty, embracing twelve hundred and ninety acres of farming lands, on which are good residence and substantial barns, groves, orchards, windmills and all modern improvements. His farms are well divided into fields for cultivation, into pastures and feed lots, and everything is in keeping with the advanced agricultural methods of this progressive age.
After coming to Rice county Mr Cramm was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, who died leaving two children: Fred, who resides on a good farm in Farmer township and who married Clara Springer; and Emil, who wedded Lydia Schmidt and is also one of the enterprising agriculturists of Rice county. Five children of the first marriage are now deceased: August, who died at the age of eleven years; Minnie, who passed away at the age of four; George, Edwin and Amelia, who died in infancy. For his second wife Mr Cramm chose Miss Maggie Kiefer who was born in Switzerland but was reared and educated in Perry county, Indiana. She died in Rice county at the age of forty-five and many friends mourned her loss. In 1895 Mr Cramm was again married, his present wife having been Miss Minnie Frey, who was also a native of Switzerland, but spent her girlhood days in St Louis, Missouri, and in Indiana.
In connection with his other interests Mr Cramm is a stockholder and director in the Bushton State Bank. His political adherency to the Republican party indicates his belief concerning the governmental policy, while his membership in the Methodist church is evidence of his religious faith. His wife is also a member of the same church and he is serving as one of its trustees. Intelligent and progressive, straightforward in business, frank and genial manner, the personal characteristics of George Cramm are such as to win for him the confidence and respect of his fellow men and today he is classed among those citizens whose labors have proven of value and benefit. His life record contains many lessons which might be profitably followed by those who are dependent upon their own resources for business advancement.