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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


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KOHAUS, R. (Prussia, Germany, Apr. 24, 1837--Unknown). In 1858 Kohaus settled in Dubuque and in 1871 established his business, R. Kohaus, at 820 Main Street. This became the city's principal source of music, musical instruments, and Wheeler & Wilson and the White Sewing Machines. (1)

In 1875 Kohaus offered a catalog of over one-hundred fifty pieces of vocal and instrumental music. (2) The same year, he reduced prices on goods costing one dollar to 95 cents, an advertising move which proved popular. (3)

In 1897 he was living in Chicago and working as a book dealer. (4)


Library of Congress
Library of Congress
Library of Congress
Library of Congress



1. Oldt, Franklin T., The History of Dubuque County, Iowa. Western Historical Company, 1880, p. 824

2. "Music Publishing in Dubuque," Daily Times, January 24, 1875

3. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, December 10, 1875, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18751210&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

4. "Personal Mention," Dubuque Herald, May 15, 1897, p. 4