Biography - Daniel Kesler

DANIEL KESLER, one of the prominent business men of Cowden, Shelby County, carries a full line of agricultural implements and deals extensively in grain. He was born in Fairfield County, Ohio, February 20, 1845, his father, John, being a native of the same county, and his mother, Mary (Lear) Kesler, being born in Lancaster, Pa. They were happily united in marriage in Fairfield County, Ohio, June 1, 1843, and became the proud parents of seven sons and two daughters, six of whom were born in the county just named and the three youngest came to them in Shelby County, this State.
Among the children of John and Mary Kesler, our subject was the first-born. Following him came Isaac who is engaged in the lumber business in Cowden: Samuel who carries on farming in Dry Point Township; Simon who is an invalid and resides with his brother, our subject: John who farms in the township just named, as does also Charles, the next son in age; Laura, now the wife of Albert L. Crumley, who resides in Cowden and whose husband is associated with her brother Daniel in the grain and implement business; William is a telegraph operator and station agent in Edna, Kan., and Alice died at the age of twenty-one after having married Albert L. Crumley who later became the husband of Laura.
The father of this family, with Daniel and Isaac was a soldier during the Civil War. He was a member of the Fourteenth Illinois Infantry and died of typhoid fever at Louisville. Ky., June 18, 1865. His wife is still living at Cowden. Daniel enlisted in Company G, One Hundred and Forty-third Illinois Infantry and served bravely for seven months. Most of his time was spent in the Southwest, as he was assigned to duty in Arkansas. Isaac belonged to the same regiment as his father and served gallantly for nine months, being then discharged on account of peace being declared.
Daniel Kesler chose as his partner to share life's joys and sorrows, Miss Elizabeth Thompson, a daughter of John Thompson, of Ohio. She was born in Pickaway County, that State, where she lost her parents by death previous to coming to Illinois. The marriage took place March 14, 1865, and proved to be a true union and one which led up to a life of more than ordinary domestic happiness and prosperity. They are both earnest and active members of the Free Methodist Church and they find in its communion and duties comfort in the trials of life and broad opportunity for usefulness.
To Mr. and Mrs. Kesler have been born eight children, six of whom are now living. Mary Nettie is married to Lincoln Bechtel and resides on a farm in Dry Point Township; Elmer and Charles who are both unmarried and reside at Pullman. Ill., near Chicago, are in the employ of the Pullman Palace Car Company. The next daughter, Annie, makes her home with her parents, and the younger ones, Harry and Bessie, are still at home. Two lovely infants, John and Lola Belle, were snatched from their parents' arms by death.
He of whom we write is well known throughout the length and breadth of Shelby County as an honorable business man, possessing the esteem and confidence of all with whom he is associated in business. He deals in grain, stock and agricultural implements and has at present the control of the stock business at Cowden. This is a patriotic family who did not hesitate when the call came for volunteers to defend the old flag and the eternal principles of liberty in which they had been brought up. Political matters with them are based upon moral issues and a hatred of slavery and a love for their country became a controlling influence. They cheerfully sacrificed the comforts of home and yielded with resignation to the loss of their father when the time came. During all Mr. Kesler's earlier years he was a Republican in his sentiments and vote, but a few years ago became a Prohibitionist and has since voted with that party on legislative and national issues.

Extracted 07 Apr 2017 by Norma Hass from 1891 Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties Illinois, pages 202-205.

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