The German element in the citizenship of Quincy has been an important one. A native son of the fatherland, Carl Becker, now connected with the manufacturing interests as a member of the Wiebmer-Becker Machine Company. was born in Rhine Pfalz, Germany, November 27, 1860, his parents being Peter and Katherina (Bergmann) Becker. The mother died in 1883, but the father is still living in Germany, at the advanced age of eighty-two years, and through his business career he has followed the trade of millwright.
Mr. Becker of this review spent the days of his boyhood and youth in his native country. He was one of a family of nine children, eight sons and a daughter, of whom all are living with the exception of John, who died at the age of forty years. Of the surviving children three sons are in this country and the others have remained in Germany. One now lives in Missouri and is a wagon maker and millwright, while a second brother of our subject is a farmer of Nebraska.
Carl Becker attended the public schools of his native land until the age of fourteen years, when he became his father’s assistant at the millwright’s trade, being thus employed until he reached the age of seventeen years, when he learned the machinist’s trade, following that pursuit until his emigration to America. He came to this country immediately after his mother’s death, locating first at Warsaw, Hancock county, Illinois, where he operated an engine for two years. He then removed to Quincy in 1885, after which he was employed for three years in the Famous Hay Press Works and for three years for the Collins Plow Company and the Smith Hill Elevator Company for four years. In 1898 he organized the Wiebmer-Becker Machine Company, which entered upon a prosperous existence, its business steadily increasing until employment is now furnished to fourteen men. His partner is Anton Wiebmer, and they manufacture all kinds of machinery, having a well-equipped plant at the southeast corner of Seventh and York streets. They are general machinists and also make a specialty of engine repairing. Mr. Becker has a thorough knowledge of mechanical pursuits and the great principles which underlie this department of activity, and his practical skill has been one of the features in the success of the business, enabling him to capably control the labors of his men.
On the 12th of October, 1885, Mr. Becker was united in marriage to Miss Lizzie Heddrich, a daughter of Philip Heddrich, who was a stone cutter by trade and died in 1903. Mr. and Mrs. Becker are the parents of two sons: Walter C., who was born December 2, 1888, and, having graduated from the public schools, is now attending the Gem City Business College; and Elmer L., who was born March 4, 1894, and is now attending the public schools.
Mr. Becker belongs to the Modern Woodmen of America and gives his political allegiance to the republican party. He has never had occasion to regret his determination to seek his fortune in the new world, for here he found the business opportunities he sought and his hopes have been more than realized, for, in this country where labor and energy are rated at their true worth, he has gained a comfortable competence, and he also has the esteem and admiration of many friends who recognize his value as a business man and citizen.
Source: Past and present of the city of Quincy and Adams County, Illinois, p. 682; by William H. Collins, Cicero F. Perry, joint author; John Tillson. History of the city of Quincy, Illinois. [from old catalog]. Chicago, S. J. Clarke Pub. Co. 1905.