MRS. PAULINE FEESS, residing in one of the most beautiful residences in Parsons, Kansas, is the widow of the late Charles Feess, a prominent cigar manufacturer of that city.
Charles Feess was born in Osweil, Wurtemberg, Germany, in 1835, being one of several children. When about eighteen years old, he emigrated from his fatherland and located in 1853, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he followed the carpenter's trade for several years. Subsequently, he learned the cigar business, which he followed for some time in Chicago, Illinois. In 1858, he went to Leavenworth, Kansas, and engaged in the manufacture of cigars on an extensive scale. Returning to the East in 1860, he was again located in Philadelphia, for several years.
While living in Philadelphia and while still engaged in the carpenter business, his marriage to the subject of this sketch was consummated. In 1866, he again went west to Leavenworth, Kansas, where he continued the manufacture of cigars. Having established an extensive trade in Parsons, Kansas, he conceived the idea of locating there, and thus saving considerable traveling expenses. After building the large, brick building next to Holm's drug store, on Johnson avenue, near Central avenue, Mr. Feess removed his family to Parsons, in 1876, immediately establishing a factory in that place.
He carried on the manufacture and sale of cigars in that section very successfully, and some time afterward purchased 800 acres of land near Oswego. In 1882, he retired from business in the city, and removed to his farm, where his death occurred two years later, at the age of but forty-nine years. He was a prominent man in fraternal circles, being a member of the K. of P., I. 0. 0. F. and K. T.
Mrs. Feess, whose maiden name was Pauline Horning, is a daughter of Gotlieb and Dora (Swent) Horning. She was born in Wurtemberg, Germany, in 1837, came to America in 1852, and settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Six children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Feess, - four sons and two daughters, as follows: Charles, Annie, Otto, William E., Lucy, and Fred. Charles Feess is married and resides in Parsons. Annie Feess married Conductor Drew, in the employ of the Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railway Company, and they reside on Central avenue; Mr. Drew is a member of the 0. R. C. Otto Feess married a Miss Blake, and is a member of the drug firm of W. E. Feess & Company. William E. Feess is the head of the drug firm of W. E. Feess & Company, doing a successful business as pharmacists and druggists on the corner of Johnson and Central avenues; he married Nora Warner, a daughter of one of the oldest and most respected families in Parsons. Lucy Feess married G. A. Weir, a fireman on the Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railway; Mr. Weir is a member of the B. of L. F. Fred Feess is a clerk in the drug store of his brothers. Otto and William E. Feess are members of the Knights of the Maccabees, and the former is also a member of the Elks.
Mrs. Feess still owns the large farm near Oswego, which she leases for pasturage and farming purposes. She returned to Parsons shortly after the death of her husband, and for a time lived in the large brick building, which was formerly their home. This she sold subsequently, and in 1897 erected her present beautiful residence at 1915 Crawford avenue. She distinctly remembers, and often refers to, incidents of pioneer life in Kansas, where she first located in 1858. Many features of her journey to Leavenworth are as fresh in her mind as if they occurred but yesterday. The railroad extended only to Jefferson City, Missouri, at that time, and the remainder of the intervening distance was traversed by boat. Mrs. Feess is a lady of many virtues, of both heart and mind, has a wide circle of friends, and is greatly beloved by her children. The entire family worship at the Presbyterian church.
Transcribed from History of Labette County, Kansas and its Representative Citizens, ed. & comp. by Hon. Nelson Case. Pub. by Biographical Publishing Co., Chicago, Ill. 1901
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