IAGenWeb Project - Allamakee co.

William H. Kerndt


William H. Kerndt, a successful and prominent farmer of French Creek township and a worthy representative of one of Allamakee county’s most honored pioneer families, was born on the farm which he now owns December 19, 1859. He is a son of Herman Kerndt, a native of Schlesien, Germany, born in 1823, and one of five Kerndt brothers who came to Allamakee county in 1853. Herman Kerndt purchased two hundred acres of unimproved land in French Creek township and devoted the remainder of his life to general farming, becoming one of the substantial and representative agriculturists of the community. His first home, a little shanty upon his holdings, was afterward replaced by a log cabin and still later by the frame dwelling now occupied by the subject of this review. This in turn he intends to replace next spring by a fine modern dwelling, for which he has the material already upon his place. The father became a successful and prosperous farmer and as his financial resources grew added to his holdings until his farm comprised three hundred and ninety acres of land lying on section 36. Herman Kerndt married Miss Godlieba Breuer, also a native of Germany, and both passed away upon this farm, the mother dying February 21, 1901, and the father, January 12, 1911. They were the parents of eight children: Alvina, who lives in Lansing; Maria, who is now Mrs. Haas; Jennie, who died at the age of twenty-two; Charles, who met his death by drowning when he was about twenty years of age; Gustave H., a farmer of Lansing township; Emma, now Mrs. H. R. Weirking, of Mankato, Minnesota; Annie, who is housekeeper for her brother, Gustave H., and William H., of this review. Mr. and Mrs. Herman Kerndt were devout members of the Congregational church and the father was a stanch supporter of the republican party.

William H. Kerndt was reared upon his present farm and acquired his education in the district schools of Makee township, in the independent district of Lycurgus. During the last years of his father’s life he assumed the management of the homestead and after his death bought the interests of the other heirs and has since been the sole owner. There are excellent improvements upon the place, Mr. Kerndt having steadily carried forward the work of development until the farm is today a valuable and productive property.

On the 19th of May, 1891, Mr. Kerndt was united in marriage to Miss Lena Nierling, a native of Allamakee county and a daughter of Anton and Mary (Buck) Nierling, both of whom have passed away. Mr. and Mrs. Kerndt have become the parents of six children: Herman, Maria, Leslie, Theodore, Willard and Clarence, all of whom are at home. The parents are devout members of the Congregational church and are liberal contributors to its support. Mr. Kerndt gives his political allegiance to the democratic party and is keenly interested in local advancement and development, although this interest never takes the form of office seeking. A resident of French Creek township since his birth, he a largely familiar with the history of the county and has an intimate knowledge of the events which have changed its annals and affected its policies. His work and accomplishments entitle him to mention among the representative men of this community.

-source: Past & Present of Allamakee County; by Ellery M. Hancock; S. J. Clarke Pub. Co.; 1913
-transcribed by Diana Diedrich

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