Also see [Railway Officials in America 1906]
Washington Rowlader was the youngest son and seventh child in the family of Michael R. and Margaret (Velta)
Rowlader, his birth occurring in Herkimer Co., N. Y., Dec. 8, 1830. He remained at home, attending school some
eight or ten terms, until after his father had moved to Woodland township, which occurred in 1848. Upon reaching
the age of twenty he commenced to support himself, as he was not needed at home. With nothing but his clothes,
which he says were not worth six dollars, he resolutely began the struggle of life, and with determination to not
only obtain the living which the world is supposed to owe every one, but something more and better. Returning to
Steuben Co., N. Y., he labored six months for seventy-two dollars, then, in company with his brother, came again
to Woodland, and, buying a Mexican land-warrant, secured the tract of land upon which he now resides, and which
by perseverance and industry he has made into one of the finest farms and homes in Woodland township. Mr. Rowlader
relates that upon first taking up his land he tried to borrow money enough of his uncle, who had plenty, to purchase
an axe, but he refused, saying he was fearful he would never be repaid.
In 1855 he married Miss Parmelia Myers, of Odessa, Ionia Co., Mich. They were the parents of three children, of
whom two are living. Mr. Rowlader was afficted by the loss of his wife, who died July 23, 1865. He was again married
March 14, 1866, this time to Miss Kate Miller, also of Ionia County, daughter of Gotleib and Christina B. Miller,
who emigrated to this country from Germany in 1836. To this last union five children have been born, of whom four
are living. Among the other drawbacks Mr. Rowlader has experienced was the paying out during the first twelve years
of his married life eleven hundred dollars for medical attendance.
Mr. Rowlader belongs to the Evangelical Church, of which he has been a member for fourteen years, although his
Christian experience extends over a period of twentyfive years; Mrs. Rowlader has also been a member of the same
church for twenty-one years. He is Republican in politics, eschews tobacco, whisky, tea, and coffee, and in his
life and labor gives abundant testimony of the virtues and preserving power of temperance. He seldom walks, nearly
always runs, and, although following this practice and laboring early and late for years, is in good health and
well preserved, and says no day's work has ever done him harm yet. Is a splendid type of German thrift and industry.
His farm consists of two hundred and thirty acres, one hundred and sixty being under high cultivation.
History of Allegan and Berry Counties, Michigan
With Illistrations and Biographical Sketches
of Their Men and Pioneers.
D. W. Ensign & Co., Philadelphia 1880
Press of J. B. Lippincoff & Co., Philadelphia.