Biography of John W. Ruhlandt
Allegheny County, PA Biographies

JOHN WILLIAM RUHLANDT, of Pittsburg [sic], who has been for more than thirty years a factor in the political life of the twenty sixth ward of that city, was born August 25, 1852, on Nineteenth between Sidney and Wharton streets, son of John William Ruhlandt. who was born in 1817, in Prussia.

John W. Ruhlandt (father) received the usual education of German boys in his rank of life, and was reared to agricultural pursuits. He served seven years in the German army as a member of the "King's Guards." That this body was composed of men of tail stature may be inferred from the fact that Mr. Ruhlandt, though six feet in height, was the smallest man in the regiment. In 1850 he came to the United States, landing in New York and thence proceeding to Pittsburg [sic] by way of the canal. His occupations were various, but during the greater part of the time he was employed in a saw miii. In politics he was always a Republican, casting his first vote in 1856 for Fremont. He was a member of the German Evangelical church on Jane street. Mr. Ruhlandt married, in 1850, in the old Presbyterian church, corner of Smithfield avenue and Sixth street, Margaret Boehm, a native of Prussia, who came that year to the United States. They made their home on Joseph (now Nineteenth) street, removing, in 1860 to another house in the same street, between Sarah and Jane streets, but always remaining in the twentysixth ward. Their children were: 1. John William, of whom later. 2. Lizzie, wife of Gustav Espy, of Pittsburg. 3. Carolina, wife of John Smith, of Pittsburg. 4. Charles J., clerk in county comptroller's office, married Sarah Lutz. Mr. Ruhlandt, the father, died September 10, 1905, and is buried in the German Presbyterian cemetery.

John William Ruhlandt, son of John William and Margaret (Boehm) Ruhiandt, was a pupil in the schools of the twenty sixth ward from the age of six to that of nine, being obliged, at that early period of life, in consequence of his father's straitened circumstances, to go to work in a glass factory. Later, however, he supplied his educational deficiencies by attending night school. He remained in the glass factory until 1874, when he engaged in the hotel business in Odd Fellows' Hall, on Eighteenth street. In 1885 he bought land on which he erected the hotel which he now conducts. In 1879 he helped to organize the Co-operative Flint Glass Company, of Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, and for the last ten years has been president of that body. In 1874 he entered politics, and has ever since taken an extremely active part in the affairs of the twenty-sixth ward. During this whole period he has adhered unswervingly to the Republican party and has been connected with the organization as a member of the city and county committees. In 1880 he was elected to the common council from the twenty-sixth ward and served until 1889, when the new charter went into effect. In 1896 he was made a member of the select council froth the ward, serving until January, 1907, when he was compelled to resign in compliance with a ruling of the judge. During his terms as counciknan he served on the corporation committee, the police committee and the board of survey. He affiliates with Germania Lodge No. Free and Accepted Masons, Lodge No. 11, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and the Cress and Americus clubs. He has been a Mason for twenty years.

Mr. Ruhlandt married, February 16, 1874, in Pittsburg, Margaret, daughter of the late Conrad Gang, of that city, and the following children hive been born to them: 1. William J., at home. 2. Henry, attended the public schools and graduated from the high school. He then served for a time as clerk in the comptroller's office, under Colonel Thompson, and in 1906 was elected to the Pennsylvania state legislature. 3. Clara, married Henry Kyle and died in 1903, leaving one child, Margaret, aged four years.

A Century and a half of
Pittsburg and her people.
By: John Newton Boucher
The Lewis Publishing Company

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