DANIEL BAER has almost reached the eightieth milestone on life’s journey and is an esteemed citizen of Grayson county, winning the friendly regard of many with whom he has come in contact. He was born in Germany in 1826, a son of Martin and Rosanna (Gunsching) Baer, who were likewise natives of the fatherland, the former there passing away at the advanced age of ninety-four years, the parents of four sons and a daughter, of whom Daniel Baer was the second child and remained a resident of his native country until thirty years of age, when in 1856 he crossed the Atlantic. He had served as a soldier in the German army during the war between Prussia and Poland in 1847, being in active duty for five months. In his native country he learned the trade of milling and on reaching this country settled in the state of New York, whence he afterward removed to Missouri, where he remained for three years, being employed as a brakeman on the railroad. He came to Texas in 1871 and was employed by the Fort Worth & Denver Railroad Company in the construction department. In the latter part of that year he settled in the northern section of Grayson county, Texas, about five miles from Denison, and established a ferry on the Red river between the Chickasaw Nation and Texas, operated on the old time cable system. Mr. Baer has since conducted this ferry and receives the following rate: twenty-five cents for a team, twenty cents for a single horse and man. He pays five hundred dollars per year to the Chickasaw Nations for the exclusive right to operate the ferry. He also owns three hundred and eighty-eight acres of land which he purchased when he came to the county and this he rents, it being devoted to the raising of cotton and corn. While working on the railroad in Missouri as a brakeman he lost his right leg just below the knee through an accident and has been thus somewhat handicapped, but has made excellent success in his business.
Mr. Baer was married in Germany in 1848 to Miss Elizabeth Coldwald, a native of that country, and together they came to America. They are the parents of four children, of whom three are now living: Harrison, who married Almira Faner and has two children, Harrison and Mary; August, who married Ella Wide and has two children, Nalie and Leora; and Julius, who wedded Mary Gabbert. The wife and mother died in 1894, at the age of seventy-one years. In politics Mr. Baer is a Democrat. He has a very wide and favorable acquaintance in this country and is highly esteemed for his manly principles and his devotion to right. He may truly be called a self-made man, for he has been the architect and builder of his own fortunes and his life illustrates what may be accomplished by determined and earnest purpose in this country where effort is unhampered by caste or class.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. I, pp. 547-548.