Captain John J. Denstaedt
Captain John J. Denstaedt has been sailing the lakes for many years, and is well known to marine men. He has owned nearly all the boats upon which he has labored, and at the present time owns the Newell Hubbard, which he has commanded over twenty years. He was born October 2, 1843, in Germany, son of Andrew and Christina Denstaedt, both natives of Germany, who died in 1885 and 1883, respectively.
At the age of five years our subject came to America and settled in Detroit, where he has since made his residence. When twelve years of age he shipped out of Detroit on the scow Louisa, as cook, and remained one season, going the following year on the same boat, which he purchased and sailed. He then bought the Monitor, and sailed her two seasons; later she was sunk in Lake Erie, after which he bought the Foam, and sailed her two years. At this time he enlisted in the army, joining the First Mich. Vol. Inf. After serving four months he came back to Detroit, bought the scow Ripper, and sailed her three seasons. After he sold this boat he built the scow Speed, and after sailing her one year sold her and built the Gipsey Queen, which he ran in the government employ in the lighthouse work on Lake Superior. He finally sold this vessel and bought the Money's Isle, which he traded after two years for the Venus, which he sailed one season. He then bought the schooner Gen. Mead, and sailed her four years, after which he traded her for the Newell Hubbard, which he still owns.
Captain Denstaedt was married January 9, 1866 to Miss Mary Welkenbach, also a native of Germany. Their children are John, who is master of the yacht Pathfinder, of Chicago; Harry, who is master of the yacht Dawn, of Detroit; Annie and Peter, who died in early childhood; William, who is on the Pathfinder with his brother; Hiram, who died when young; Walter who is a polisher in the Ireland; Matthew, in a manufacturing company, and George, who is attending school in Detroit. Captain Denstaedt is a member of the Masonic fraternity and of the I. O. O. F. He has a large circle of friends in both societies.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.