Frederick Hiller

FREDERICK HILLER, a worthy and respected farmer of Ross township, of German descent, was born September 2, 1853, in Wurtemberg, Germany. He is at present residing on a farm in section 25, township 32, range 23. Mr. Hiller owns considerable property in different parts of the county, and has of late years become interested in the coal industry, Mine No. 5 having been sunk on his home farm. He is what might be termed a self-made man, having accumulated the property now in his possession by his own efforts.

Frederick Hiller was his father, and Marie (Garbroeck) his mother, and both were natives of the same place in the "Fatherland." They grew up together and were married there, and until 1863 were engaged in farming in their native country. In that year they embarked with their family for America, and after a four-weeks voyage landed at the port of New York. From this gateway to the New World they proceeded to Butler County, Ohio, and thence, after a short period, to Livingston County, Illinois. On February 7, 1872, they arrived after an overland trip, in Ross township, Cherokee County, Kansas, where they purchased 160 acres of wild land in section 24, township 32, range 23. They erected an 18 by 24-foot house, and further improved the place. About 1893 Mr. Hiller sold out and thereafter lived with his children. The mother died in March, 1892, at the age of 66 years,—the father surviving until March 4, 1903. They were consistent and worthy members of the Evangelical Church. The father was a man of sturdy character, industrious and of a quiet disposition. His political affiliations were with the Democratic party. A family of eight children were born to these parents, as follows: Frederick; John and George, of Crawford County, Kansas; an infant boy deceased; Kate, who married Fred Budde, and resides in Weir City, Kansas; Mary, deceased, who was the wife of J. E. Best, a farmer of Ross township; Emma, now Mrs. George Bergman, of Crawford County; and Rose, who married George Reaser, and resides in Crawford County.

Although but 10 years of age when the family came to this country, the subject of this sketch had received some mental training in the schools of his native land which was supplemented by school attendance in the different places in this country where his parents lived. He even attended school after coming to Cherokee County, although he had nearly reached his majority. He remained dutifully at home until he was of age, and then began branching out for himself. He, however, was an inmate of the home until his marriage, which occurred January 11, 1876, Mrs. Hiller having been Kate Buergin, of Woodford County, Illinois. She is a daughter of Frederick and Gertrude (Ecker) Buergin, the father being a native of Baden, and the mother, of Prussia. After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Buergin came to America, and first settled in Woodford County, Illinois. They came, in 1871, to Ross township, Cherokee County, Kansas, where they purchased 160 acres of wild land in section 26, township 32, range 23, which they continued to cultivate the remainder of their lives, the father dying in 1897, and the mother in November, 1903. There are seven children in the Hiller family, as follows: Charles who married Mamie Mills, is bookkeeper for The Central Coal & Coke Company, and has one son.—Vivian Louis; John E., weigh boss for the Fleming Coal Company; Frank; Lena; Roy: Arthur; and Gertrude. All but Charles W. live at home.

Upon his marriage Mr. Hiller located on his present farm, which at that time was wild land. All the improvements which are seen upon it now are the work of Mr. Hiller and his good wife. As he prospered, he put his savings into other lands, and now owns 240 acres in sections 25 and 26, township 32, range 23, in Ross township, and 160 acres in section 3, township 33, range 23, in Salamanca township. The discovery of coal on his home farm has, in later years, greatly increased its value.

Mr. Hiller is a companionable, social spirit, and is popular among his neighbors. He has served as treasurer of the School Board for the past 15 years, and has held other of offices in the township. He supports the Democratic ticket, and is a member of the I. O. O. F., and the A. O. U. W., both at Columbus.


History of Cherokee County Kansas and its representative citizens, ed. & comp. by Nathaniel Thompson Allison, 1904, transcribed by Lolly Qualls, student from USD 508, Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas, 3/16/97.


[TOC] [Biog. Index] [1904 Index] [Cherokee Co.] [Archives]
Tom & Carolyn Ward
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