Undertaking a legacy: The home on Fourth Street
By Kris Leonhardt
After Jacob Sturm departed from the Rembs & Sturm Furniture and Undertaking business, Louis Rembs’ son John entered into business with his father.
Eventually, Louis sought his retirement so he might split his time between California and Wisconsin and sold his remaining interest to his son and the Baer/Lange Company.
In 1937 the newly formed company of Rembs, Baer, and Lange opened a funeral home on the corner of Fourth Street and Chestnut Avenue. The new funeral home was a remodeled house that once belonged to Frank Upham.
Renovations included an addition onto the west side of the building as well as a complete remodeling and redecorating of the interior. The addition housed part of the grand display room.
The interior was painted in a soft gold tone with rich carpeting in green and gold hues. Windows were decorated with a combination of venetian blinds and golden damask drapery. Indirect lighting added to the solemn atmosphere.
A semicircular alcove stretched out from the stately chapel, which was adorned with glazed tile, a fireplace with copper-colored ironwork, and a modern electric organ. John and his wife maintained living quarters in the upper floor of the structure.
After the partnership between Rembs and the Baer/Lange Company dissolved, Rembs continued to operate the funeral home, which now included ambulance service as well as the furniture business.
Two years later, John disposed of his furniture stock and closed the Rembs Furniture Company to devote his time to his ambulance and funeral services.
The following year Louis Rembs was laid to rest in the business he helped create after suffering a heart attack at the age of 75.
His obituary chronicled Louis’ birth in Reichenau, Austria, and his arrival in America in 1883. Louis worked in Rothschild in a planing mill and lumberyard for 10 years before coming to Marshfield.
He established a furniture and undertaking business on the corner of North Central Avenue and West Blodgett Street before entering a partnership with Sturm.
Next week: Moving into the future
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