Frederick Heis, the leading marble and granite dealer of Leavenworth, and a manufacturer of all kinds of cut stone, was born at Epingen, Baden, Germany, April 22, 1847. He was one of a family of four children, three of whom are still living: Louisa, Tinna and Frederick. The parents emigrated from the Fatherland in 1853, and located at Cleveland, Ohio, where the father was employed at the Union Station for twenty-five years. The father is dead, but the mother lives with a daughter in Cleveland, having reached the hale old age of eighty-eight years. Frederick was educated in the public schools of Cleveland and then learned the marble cutter's trade with Jones & Son, of that city, where he had exceptional opportunities of learning to model in clay under a man named Walcott, who was employed by the Jones Company. He also studied under a sculptor and readily took to that branch of the work, spending all his spare time in modeling and sculpturing. Mr. Heis remained in Cleveland until he was twenty years of age and then determined to seek his fortunes in the West and located in St. Louis in 1867. From there he went to Boonville, Mo., as a journeyman and subsequently ran a branch shop in Sedalia for six months. In 1868 he came to Leavenworth and entered the employ of Luellen Eckelberry, who founded his business in 1856, making it the oldest marble works in Kansas. Within a short time Mr. Heis became the foreman of the shop and worked in that capacity for years. He then bought an interest in the business which was run under the firm name of Eckelberry & Heis. In 1876 Mr. Eckelberry sold out to a Mr. Burdett and the new partnership continued until 1885, when Mr. Heis bought the controlling interest in the works, which he has continued to run by himself. Mr. Heis has introduced all the modern machinery in his factory, has compressed air and is equipped to do all kinds of marble and granite work. The business covers eastern Kansas and a large part of Missouri. Mr. Heis now spends a part of his time on the road in the interest of his business, but devotes some time to sculptural work. Some of the work he has done is the statue of Major Wiggins, at Mount Muncie cemetery; the eagle in the grand hall at Fort Leavenworth; the statue of Governor Robinson; the bas relief of D. R. Anthony; the bust of Lincoln, and the soldiers' monument at Olathe, Kan. In 1876 he cut a vase out of the Lansing limestone and exhibited it at the Centennial exposition at Philadelphia. Mr. Heis is a member of the Knights of Pythias and chancellor commander of that order, is now clerk of the Woodmen of the World, and has served for a long time as president of the Fraternal Aid Association. In politics he is a Republican and a stanch supporter of the party.
Mr. Heis was married in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1867, to Miss Minnie Wollman of that city. They have seven children: Fred, Jr., Atlantic, Iowa; Minnie married John Baunlein, St. Joseph, Mo.; Lottie A., bookkeeper in her father's office; Hattie, at home; Benjamin F., with his father in the business; Anettie, a teacher in Leavenworth; and Rubie, at home.Pages 857-858 from volume III, part 2 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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