The Curious Case of Charles Reif vs SB Paige

Part 4 - The Suit The Oshkosh Northwestern newspaper published a brief article detailing three suits brought against Simon Bailey Paige on May 2, 1881. Mr. Paige was preparing to move to Davenport, Iowa and the suits were served before his departure. Former first assistant Charles Reif of the Oshkosh fire department was suing Mr. … Continue reading The Curious Case of Charles Reif vs SB Paige

The Curious Case of Charles Reif vs SB Paige

Part 3 - Dissension in the Ranks In the days following the fire, word began to circulate that the Chief Engineer of the fire department RJ Weisbrod and First Assistant Charles Reif were at odds. The Oshkosh Northwestern published comments on December 7 by Weisbrod accusing Reif of drunkenness and insubordination following the retrieval of … Continue reading The Curious Case of Charles Reif vs SB Paige

The Curious Case of Charles Reif vs SB Paige

Part 1 - Fire at Beckwith House The Beckwith House From the Oshkosh Northwestern, Oshkosh, Wisconsin, page 2 Saturday, 4 December 1880 On December 3, 1880, a kerosene lamp exploded at a grand hotel called the Beckwith House in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The resulting fire spread very quickly through the large building, trapping two female guests … Continue reading The Curious Case of Charles Reif vs SB Paige

Portraits

Charles J. Reif Charles J. Reif was actually born Johann Friedrich Karl Reif on 25 October 1839 in Markr√∂hlitz, Saxony, Germany. He was the fifth of at least ten children born to Johann Friedrich Reif and Johanna Friederike Leitiger there. The family immigrated to the US in October 1846 and seem to have come directly … Continue reading Portraits