Biography of Joseph Mesmer


Mesmer, Joseph, Grand Island, is one of the well-to-do farmers of Grand Island. He was born in Buffalo, January, 1855, the oldest of two sons and five daughters born to Joseph Mesmer, who was a native of Germany, born in 1821 and a son of Anthony Mesmer. Anthony came to America in 1828, bringing his family with him, which consisted of three Sons and three daughters. He bought a farm in the town of Buffalo, near where is now the corner of Main and Amherst streets. He was very prosperous and later retired to Buffalo and purchased a residence on Main street, where he spent his remaining days. Joseph Mesmer, the father, was for a number of years engaged in the stone business and owned a quarry in Buffalo. In 1855 he moved to Grand Island and purchased 260 acres of timber land, which he cleared and converted into spiles, railroad ties and cord wood and disposed of it on the river bank. He was a hard working man and prosperous. He was actively identified with the Democratic party, who elected him to the office of assessor, commissioner of highways, poormaster and constable. His wife was Katharine Schmidt, born in France. Mr. Mesmer died in April, 1896. His wife survives him and resides on the Island. Joseph, the subject, worked on his father's farm and attended the district school, remaining with his parents until twenty-five years of age, when he began for himself on a rented farm. Upon the death of his father he came in possesion of sixty acres of his father's farm as his portion, and afterwards purchased twenty acres more from his sister, and has since resided here, doing a general and successful farming. He, like his father, is a firm adherent to the principles of Democracy. He represented his town one term as commissioner of highways, and is a member of the Farmers' Alliance. In 1885 he married Mary Geschwender, of Grand Island, and they had six children: Joseph, Magnus, John, Leo (died when six years old), Mary and Aloysus. Mr. and Mrs. Mesmer are members of the Catholic church.

Our County and its people
A descriptive work on Erie County, New York
Edited by: Truman C. White
The Boston History Company, Publishes 1898


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