Biography of Charles C. Niswonger
Oregon Biographies





Charles Perry Niswonger is numbered among the successful and enterprising citizens of Bend and has for a number of years served as coroner of Deschutes county. A native of Ohio he was born in that state in 1874, a son of Moses and Maria (Murray) Niswonger. The Niswonger family were pioneers of that state and the paternal grandfather was descended from the Braumbaugh family, one of the earliest and most prominent families in Ohio.

When but four years of age Charles Perry Niswonger removed with his parents to Michigan and was reared on his father's farm. He attended the grade and high schools in the vicinity and remained under the parental roof until he reached the age of twenty years, when he engaged in the lumber business. Subsequently he learned brick masonry and was active along that line in Washington and Oregon for twelve years. In 1902 he decided to try his luck in the west and in that year came to Washington, where in 1907 he acquired timber lands. The dam across the Deschutes river that furnishes the power for the Bend Water, Light & Power Company was one of the first jobs on which he worked and the Bean building is also one of the samples of his ability with the trowel. He was not content to follow this line of business throughout his life, however, and in 1911 entered the Cincinnati College of Embalming. Completing his course in that institution he returned to Bend and being a licensed embalmer, established a business. His ability as an embalmer and funeral director is well known thoughout the county and in 1918 he was elected coroner of Deschutes county. In 1920 he was elected to succeed himself and is still active in that capacity.

In 1901 occurred the marriage of Mr. Niswonger and Sadie Hibbard, a daughter of James Hibbard, a well known farmer of Michigan. Mr. and Mrs. Niswonger have two children• Lillian Alvina, who married Fred Van Matre of Bend; and Ida Jennette, who is a junior in the Willamette University, where she is majoring in chemistry, a study in which she shows special aptitude. She is active in Sunday school work and is well known in social circles,

Fraternally Mr. Niswonger is identified with the Elks, Odd Fellows, Woodmen of the World and the Moose and he was one of the organizers of the Odd Fellows lodge in Bend. The family are consistent members of the Methodist church and Mr. Niswonger is a trustee of that organization. He is treasurer of the Pilot Butte Cemetery Association, of which he was one of the organizers, and a director of the Oregon Funeral Directors Association. He built the handsome brick mortuary chapel on Irving avenue and it is modern in every detail. Since coming to Bend Mr. and Mrs. Niswonger have been active in all public affairs and have won the high regard of the community. During the World war both took an active part in all drives and patriotic movements and gave generously of their time and money. Mrs. Niswonger is prominent in the social and club circles of Bend and was the first president of the Civic League and is an ex president of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union.

From:
History of Oregon Illistrated
Vol. 3
BY: Charles H. Carney
The Pioneer Historical Publishing Company
Chicago - Portland 1922


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