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Rittenhouse, William (1644-1708), paper manufacturer and Mennonite bishop  

Charles Lowery

Rittenhouse, William (1644–17 February 1708), paper manufacturer and Mennonite bishop, was born in Mülheim on the Ruhr River near Essen, in the lordship of Broich and the duchy of Berg, the son of Maria Hagerhoffs and George Rittenhausen (also spelled Rüddinghuysen and Rittinghausen). Almost nothing is known about his early life. His father may have been involved in papermaking, an important industry in Mülheim since at least the early sixteenth century. William married a local woman (name unknown), with whom he had three children, all of whom were born between 1666 and 1674, presumably in Mülheim....