Hugo Kranz was born in Lehrbach, Germany on 13 June 1834. He immigrated to the United States with his father in 1851 before moving to Canada and settling in Berlin, Ontario in 1855. In Berlin, his father opened a general store, which Kranz continued to run after his father’s death in 1875. Soon after arriving in Berlin, Kranz began a long political career, serving first as a town clerk from 1859 until 1867. He then served as the reeve of the village of Berlin between 1869 and 1870, before being elected mayor of the town of Berlin in 1874. Kranz served as mayor until 1878, and in that time, also helped found the Economical Mutual Fire Insurance Company. In 1878, Kranz was elected as a Conservative Member of Parliament for the constituency of Waterloo North. This was during the same election that John A. Macdonald was re-elected Prime Minister of Canada. Kranz was re-elected in the 1882 election, but lost his position in the 1887 election, and was defeated again in 1891. Kranz is significant as he was an immigrant of German origin who, like many other Germans, led a very successful life.
(Celebration of Cityhood 1912. Berlin: The German Printing and Publishing Co of Berlin, 1912.; PARLINFO. “Kranz, Hugo Carl.” Accessed April 20, 2014. http://www.parl.gc.ca/)