Philip Jacob Altstaetter, who resides on the old Altstaetter homestead farm of 160 acres, situated in section 18, Monroe township, was born on this farm August 10, 1861, and is a son of Jacob and Catherine (Bucher) Altstaetter.


Elsewhere in this work in the sketches of Frederic and George L. Altstaetter, brothers of our subject will be found an extended notice of the parents of our subject who were the early founders of the German settlement here, and for many years very prominent residents. Philip Jacob is the 12th in their family of 13 children.


Our subject was reared to plenty of hard work on the home farm, as his father was a man who believed in industry and set the example. His schooling was obtained in the district schools and he remained at home until 23 years of age. He then worked at the carpenter's trade for two years at Dayton and continued to be thus engaged for some four years after he returned to Allen County. After his marriage, in 1889, he went to Columbus Grove and there first clerked in a dry goods and hardware store, and then bought a half interest in a furniture and undertaking business there, which he subsequently sold, returning to the old homestead in 1898. Here he has carried on general farming and stock-raising.


On January 1, 1889. Mr. Altstaetter was married to Emma L. Miller, who was born January 1, 1868, in Monroe township, Allen County, Ohio, and is a daughter of Henry and Mary (Sauer) Miller, natives of Hesse, Germany, who accompanied their respective parents to America in childhood, the Millers, settling in Pennsylvania, and the Sauers in Ohio. Mr. and Mrs. Altstaetter have eight children, namely: Emil Henry, Gilbert William, Clifford Jacob, Mary Catherine, Waldo Emerson, Albert Arthur, Clara Helena and Lena Albertina.


Mr. Altstaetter is a Democrat. He belongs to the Knights of Pythias lodge at Columbus Grove. He has the German's gift of music and is an expert violinist. Among many interesting relics in the old homestead, he takes especial pride in a fine violin which was purchased at Antwerp, where he visited in 1885. This violin was made in Italy after the pattern of one fashioned in 1715. The old homestead has numerous examples of the cabinet-making skill of his father and some of the pieces of furniture that were made from rough timber in the pioneer days. He also prizes highly an old family Bible, which is still well-preserved, although it was printed in 1745.