Henry Zerlaut, farmer, section 5, Bridgeton Township, was born March 11, 1843, in Bavaria, Germany. His parents, Joseph and Elizabeth (Steiner) Zerlaut, were also natives of Germany. They came to the United States in 1852 and located at Providence, R. I., and in that place Mr. Zerlaut was a pupil for five years at the public schools.
In the spring of 1856 he went to Wauregan Mills, Windham Co., Conn., and two years after removed to Moosup in the same county, where he entered upon an apprenticeship to acquire the trade of weaver of cassimeres, with a man named Dalebarr. He worked at the business for four years, and went thence to Pittsfield, Mass., where he remained until October, 1861, engaged a part of the time in preparing to follow the trade of barber, afterwards founding a similar business for himself in that city, which he conducted until the fall of 1874, when the fire which effected such disaster to Muskegon destroyed his trade and he then came to Bridgeton. He located a farm of 80 acres, on which he engaged in successful and creditable agriculture, and had nearly the entire body of his land under improvement.
Mr. Zerlaut was married Feb. 4, 1865, to Adelia E., daughter of Guernsey and Lydia (Smith) Hall, natives of Ohio. Mrs. Zerlaut was born in Medina County, in the Buckeye State, Feb. 4, 1846. Her parents removed to Hillsdale Co., Mich., when she was nine years old, and came thence to Muskegon, where she was chiefly educated. In the spring of 1863 she came to Sheridan Township, where she remained until her marriage. A month after that event, March 14, 1865, Mr. Zerlaut enlisted, but was discharged three months later without having seen actual military services, as the war was ended. Seven Children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Zerlaut: Edmund G., Nov. 16, 1867; Grace G., July 26, 1870; Jessie H., Nov. 5, 1872; Frederick B., May 3, 1880; Earl V., Aug. 23, 1883; Roy S., Sept. 16, 1875 (died Nov. 15, 1877); Ermina C., Aug 13, 1877; died in November, 1879.
Mr. Zerlaut was a Republican, held office of School Director, and was elected Justice of the Peace.
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