"Veteran Business Man Passes Away" was the headline for the obituary of Henry Ritter, a well known Sandusky merchant who died in June, 1907. The article in the June 9, 1907 issue of the Sandusky Register reported that Henry Ritter was "one of Sandusky's oldest and best known citizens and the veteran tobacco merchant of this section of Ohio." The article continued, "All realized of late that the condition of Mr. Ritter was precarious, but it was hoped in spite of the fact, that the care which only reverence and kindness can prompt and the best of medical attention would prolong his days. Such however, was not the case. He grew weaker and weaker until the end came."
Henry Ritter was 69 years old when he died. Henry first was in the cigar business in Sandusky with a Mr. Embse. After Mr. Embse retired, Henry Ritter was the sole proprietor of the cigar store. In 1892, he formed a partnership with his son, William H. Ritter, changing the name of the business to Henry Ritter & Son. by 1900, Henry Ritter retired, and the name of the business was changed to Henry Ritter's Sons, as another son Edwin joined William H. Ritter in the firm. A photograph of the Ritter cigar factory can be seen at the Sandusky History web site.
The first wife of Henry Ritter was Christina Andrews, though her tombstone gives Elizabetha as her first name. The first Mrs. Ritter passed away on April 12, 1889. Henry Ritter and Christina/Elizabetha Ritter's children were: William, Edwin, and Albert Ritter.
After the death of his first wife, Henry Ritter married Lena Griener. They also had three children, Karl, Helen, and Florence. Mrs. Lena Ritter died in Ashville, North Carolina on October 18, 1911. Obituaries for Mrs. Lena Ritter appeared in the Sandusky Register on several days, October 21, 22, and 24, 1907. The pallbearers for Lena Ritter included her son Karl, her three stepsons, and two other family members, William and John Ritter.
Henry Ritter and both his first and second wives are buried in Block 75 of the North Ridge section of Oakland Cemetery.