Leonard Aloysius Lenzen, seventh child of Mathias John and Theresia Mary (Schumacher) Lenzen, was born 6 June 1900 in Brown County, Minnesota.
His birth occurred after the 1900 census enumeration date of 1 June, and the Lenzen family was enumerated in the Leavenworth Township, Brown County, Minnesota census. His father, Mathias J. Lenzen, was a farmer, and there was a mortgage on the farm. Theresia, Leonard’s mother, had given birth to six children, and five were living. Charley, the eldest child, had attended six months of school.
On 12 September 1918, eighteen-year-old Leonard registered for the World War I draft at the Ashland County, Wisconsin, draft board. He was working as a farmer for M. J. Lenzen (who happened to be his father). He was tall and had a slender build. His eyes were gray, and his hair was brown. Perhaps he didn’t like his middle name; he registered as Leonard Louis Lenzen.
The Lenzen family was living near Glidden in northern Wisconsin on land that had been scoured by the glaciers during the ice age. The soil was poor, and families worked hard at making a living.
It was around this time that this photo of Leonard (on the right) and Henry Laux (on the left) was made. They are sharpening their scythes, hand tools used to cut grass or wheat. The house and the outbuildings can be seen in the background.
|Henry Laux and Leonard Lenzen, Glidden, Wisconsin, 1918.|
 Matilda Evelyn Schmitt Wagner, The Family Tree of John Joseph Schumacher and Theresia Huiras (Privately printed, 1963), 47.
 “WWI Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918,” digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 18 January 2015), Leonard Louis Lenzen, serial no. 1919, order no. 2031, Draft Board Ashland County, Wisconsin; citing World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, NARA microfilm publication M1509; no specific roll cited.