Albert H. Geisel

Albert H. Geisel was born in Julietta, Marion county, Indiana, on October 4, 1871, the son of Conrad and Catherine (Weber) Geisel. Conrad Geisel was born in Hesse, Darmstadt, in April, 1841, and died on December 29, 1900. He was a son of Conrad Geisel, Sr., who was also born in Hesse, Darmstadt, and who immigrated with his family to America in 1841 on a sailing vessel. He landed at Baltimore and came by rail and canal and the Ohio river to Pittisburgh and from there on the Ohio river to Cincinnati and from Cincinnate he came by wagon to Hancock county.

Conrad Geisel, entered a forty-acre tract of land two and one-half miles southwest of New Palestine. For this land he paid one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre. On this tract he built a four-room log house and cleared a portion of the ground and began his life work in a vast wilderness. He passed through and endured all the hardships of a pioneer life. It is related that when the old Jefferson, Madison & Indianapolis railroad was being built he walked to near Indianapolis on every Monday morning and worked all week on the construction of this railroad and returned on Saturday night to his farm. This work continued for four months and at the expiration of this time he was defrauded out of the wages due him. He continued to live on his homestead and gradually cleared up his land and brought it under cultivation and it was here that he spent his declining years with the exception of the last two which were spent with his eldest son on the adjoining farm.

Conrad Geisel, Jr., who was the father of the subject of this sketch, was one of eight children, five boys and three girls. He was only eight months old when his parents brought him to America. He spent his childhood on the homestead of his father and here grew to manhood. At the age of twenty-one years he went to Indianapolis and learned the trade of blacksmith. About this time he was married to Catherine Weber, who was born in Germany, in 1848. Her parents were from Hesse, Darmstadt, Germany, and came to America in 1850 and settled in Sugar Creek township, Hancock county. Here they bought a tract of eighty acres just south of the old Geisel farm on which the remained until the death of Mr. Weber, which occurred about 1855. Mrs. Weber's widow remained on the place a few years and then lived with her children. She died at the home of her daughter, Emma Church, at Waverly, Illinois. After his marriage, Conrad Geisel, Jr., moved onto the old Delaney farm where he lived for two years. He then moved to the old King farm and after a year's stay there he went back to Indianapolis where he followed his trade for a number of years. Then he went to Pleasant View and remained four years and from there to Julietta where he conducted a blacksmith shop for several years and afterward moved back to the home farm and finally built a shop at New Palestine where for the next thirty years he conducted his blacksmith business. In December, 1910, he died. His wife still survives and resides at the old family residence in new Palestine. The following children were born to them: Anna, deceased; Bertha, John, who is deceased; Albert H., who is the subject of this sketch, and Luther C., of North Yakima, Washington.

Albert H. Geisel, the subject of this sketch, was born in Julietta and when seven years of age came to new Palestine with his parents. Here he attended the public schools and after finishing school he took a position at the Spot Cash store in Greenfield where he remained for eight months. His next position was with the John Stephens Dry Goods Company of Indianapolis, where he remained for one year. He then came to New Palestine and engaged in the implement business. He remained in this business for two years and then bought the remaining stock of the Short & Ashcraft Store and then conducted a general mercantile business. He remained at that location for five years and then remodeled the shop of his father and moved his stock of goods to its present location in 1898 and has remained there since that time. Mr. Geisel was married at the age of twenty-two to Anna Kissel, who was born in Hancock county, Sugar Creek township, in February, 1876. She was the daughter of Peter and Malinda Kissel, the former now residing at Louisville, Kentucky. The latter died when Anna was but six years of age.

Albert H. Geisel conducts an up-to-date store and handles general merchandise and in addition does an extensive coal business. Mr. Geisel is a member of the Methodist church and his wife is also a member of this church. He is a member of the following lodges: New Palestine Lodge No. 404, Free and Accepted Masons; New Palestine Lodge No. 215, Knights of Pythias; New Palestine Lodge of Red Men; New Palestine Lodge of Modern Woodmen of America; New Palestine Lodge No. 844, Independent Order of Odd Fellows. Mr. Geisel has been practically a life-long resident of Hancock county. He is a Democrat in politics and is one of New Palestine's leading merchants and citizens. He is a man of strong character and a reputation of merit. He is the father of one child, Wilhelmina, who is at home.

Transcribed from History of Hancock County, Indiana, Its People, Industries and Institutions by George J. Richman, B. L., Federal Publishing Co., Indianapolis, Indiana, 1916. Page 1042-1044.

Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI October 31, 2001.

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