Historical Plaque Properties


Moses Schlotzhauer - Builder & Contractor
154 Douglas Street
Stratford, ON

Many of Stratford and Perth County’s early settlers came from the British Isles but immigrants from Germany were also a very significant presence eventually comprising about one third of the population of the county. They came to this area either from earlier migrations to eastern American states or directly from Germany, and established well known and prosperous businesses. The Brandenberger Block on Wellington Street is named for William Brandenberger, an early resident whose son Albert built Theatre Albert, now the Avon Theatre. Brothers John and George Kalbfleisch came here from Germany In the 1830’s. William Rischmiller, also a native of Germany owned the property where the original Town Hall and Market Building stood before the fire.

In 1856 a 17 year old Henry Schlotzhauer left Hamburg Germany onboard the sailing ship Julie Heyn, and, after landing in Quebec made his way to Ellice Township (Perth East) where he set up a saw mill operation and acquired farming lands. It is perhaps not surprising that two of his three sons, Moses and Edward, established themselves as builders in Stratford. Moses Schlotzhauer who built the house on the property that is 154 Douglas Street was born in 1881 in Ellice Township, one of the family of six children that Henry and his Canadian born wife, Mary Knechtel, would raise. When Moses married Mabel Hattie Brown from Arthur Township in Wellington County on August 26, 1903 he was already a merchant in Stratford.

He conducted his business as a builder from his residence at 252 Ontario Street, while his brother Edward was located nearby. Their sisters, Sarah, Mary and Amanda married, respectively, Oliver Peter, a cheese maker, Adam Manz, an Ellice Township farmer and Harry Diehl, a bricklayer, later a postman. The youngest family member, and the third son, Samuel, emigrated to the United States, settling in Glendale, California where he pursued a career as a salesman. US/Canada Cross Border records show that his brother Edward made the cross-continent trip to visit him and his family.   

Moses and Mabel were the parents of a son, Kenneth Basil, born in 1908. After graduating from Central Collegiate he enrolled in the University of Toronto to study medicine. He returned to Stratford in 1935 to set up practise as a family physician.


Two years later his father, Moses, died at age 57.  Mabel lived on in the house on Ontario Street for the next 30 years, later moving to George St. and passed away in 1982 at 96 years of age. All are buried in Avondale Cemetery.