Karl Leder was born in Germany in 1839, the son of a well-to-do tavern owner and his wife. As he had no inclination to work in the family business, Karl joined the army and served in three historic wars - Denmark-Holland (1864), Austrian-Prussian (1866), and Franco-Prussian (1870-71). In 1866 he married Auguste Haschick, who was born in 1846.
On July 10, 1884 Karl & Auguste, together with their eight children - William, Charles, Gustav, Albert, Bertha, Paul, Frank, and Auguste - set sail from Liverpool, England, aboard the S.S. Pervain of the Allen Line Steamship Company; the ship docked in Quebec City on July 19, 1884.
Although none in the family could speak English or French, they did know the Canadian currency, their destination of Petawawa and the names of the trails that would lead them here. Karl had obtained a 200- acre land grant, Lots 15 & 16 in Range ‘C’. This crown land property was located where the Civic Center and Moncion’s grocery store property now stand, and they built their home where Kentucky Fried Chicken is currently situated.
As the years progressed and now in failing health, in 1907 Karl and Auguste deeded the property to their son, Paul. Paul and his wife Emilie (nee Nass) were married when they immigrated to Canada from Germany in 1884, and it was in Petawawa they raised their daughter Bertha and youngest son Robert.
Paul built a larger two-storey house near the original log cabin and Karl and Auguste moved from the cabin to live with Paul. Auguste Leder died in 1914 and at the time of her death she had 43 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Karl continued to live on the farm with Paul and Emilie until his death in 1926.
Paul and Emilie continued to farm until they deeded the property to their son, Oscar and his wife Helen (nee Brumm) in 1943. Oscar’s parents continued living with them until Paul’s death in 1954 and Emilie’s death in 1959. In 1973 Oscar and Helen sold part of the property to the Township of Petawawa to accommodate the building of the Petawawa Civic Centre. Oscar Leder died in 2002 and his wife Helen in 2005. Diane Leder, a great-grandchild of Karl and Auguste, still resides on a lot which is part of the original land the Leder’s settled in Petawawa in 1884.