Biography of Frederick Kessler
Rush County, IN Biographies





FREDERICK KESSLER, a retired farmer and substantial citizen of Walker township, was born in Germany, March 29, 1850, a son of Frederick and Barbara (Nicholas) Kessler. They had eleven children, the two survivors of the family being Mike and Frederick. The parents spent their lives in Germany where the father followed the wagon making trade. Frederick Kessler, the younger, remained in his native land until he was twenty years old, going to school in boyhood and later helping his father. He was determined, however. to emigrate to the United States and took advantage of the first opportunity that came his way to secure passage across the Atlantic. After being safely landed in the port of New York, he made his way to Shelbyville, Ind., where an acquaintance by the name of John Leafes was established in the drug business, with whom he remained for seven weeks, going then to Cincinnati, where he secured a position in a bakery and remained there eight months. At this time sickness fell upon him and he returned to his friend in Shelbyville. When ready to begin work again, he went on a farm and for the next four years worked as a farm hand for Andrew Kuhn and later for Daniel Kuhn. In 1876 he married and began farming on his own account and for the next sixteen years rented land in Rush county, then bought his first piece, a tract of eight acres. This was his beginning in the acquirement of a large and valuable estate, Mr. Kessler now owning 450 acres of land all in one body. For many years he carried on general farming and stockraising, each year feeding two ear loads of hogs. When he felt ready to retire from active work on the farm he found no difficulty as he has strong, sturdy and capable sons who are now very successfully carrying on the various industries. April 12, 1876, Frederick Kessler married Elizabeth Hatehel, who was born in Germany, daughter of Christian and Salome (Bair) Hatchel, and who died on July 8, 1912. Mr. Kessler and his wife had eleven children, nine of whom are living: Sarah, Mary. Elizabeth, Carrie, John, Jacob, Edward, Frank Michael, Frederick and William. Elizabeth married Cary McKay, a farmer in Rush county, and they have four children, Mary, Nella, Dorothy and Thelma. Carrie, who died on October 12, 1918, was the wife of Walter Melser, a farmer in Rush county, and left two children, Mary and Robert. John, who is a farmer in Rush county, married Berta Bebout, who died August 8, 1917, leaving two sons, Harold and Herman, the latter of whom died February 10, 1918. Edward, who is a farmer in Walker township; Rush county, married Nora Thebold, and they have one son, Raymond Frank, who is also a farmer in Walker township, married Laura Shower, and they have one child, Masella A. William, who is a farmer in Decatur county, married a Miss Melser. Frederick, the youngest of the family, was an overseas soldier in the World war, a member of the second company in the sixth provisional advance department, when he was stricken with influenza and died from this malady, far from home ands kindred. He was a member of the Red Men. Mr. Kessler is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church at Manilla In politics he is a Republican and has always been a useful citizen, well known over the county and a member of the Masonic lodge at Manila.

From:
Centennian History of Rush County, Indiana
Edited by: A. L. Gary and E. B. Thomas
Historical Publishing Company
Indianapolis 1921


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