One of Beardstown’s first mansions

    Oh, if I could just go back about 175 years, hook up the horse to a fine carriage and ride down the dirt State Street to the attractive mansion, bordered by a steel fence, where Beardstown’s first mayor lived. This column is about the history of an old home in Beardstown, and about a man who built it. The house is at 6th and State Street, across from the Masonic Temple. The man is Judge John A. Arenz, who did a lot for Beardstown during his lifetime.
    Judge Arenz was born in a home along the beautiful Rhine River near Cologne, Germany. His father was a prominent and successful man, and was an officer in the German army. John Arenz came to America in 1835, sailing from Bremen to Baltimore. Before coming to America he was educated in Civil Engineering and other branches of engineering. He was one of a corps of men who measured the state of Prussia. He was a school principal and was given a license to practice as an attorney.

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