submitted by Kevan & Mary Chown, November 25, 2007

The Final Summons.
April 23, 1894 (hand written)

Our well known citizen, FERDINAND BERNHARDT, passed away at 6:20 o’clock yesterday morning, after an illness of eight weeks’ duration. His fatal ailment had its origin in a bruise on his foot which gradually became worse until gangrene set in when amputation was deemed necessary. The patient submitted to an operation last Thursday, and from the effects of which he failed to rally owing to his advanced age, and at the hour named above the end came peacefully and tranquilly.

For more than two score years Mr. Bernhardt had made Muscatine his home, and up to the time of his illness he had been actively engaged in business. Honest and industrious by nature he was ever upright in his dealings, and enjoyed the esteem of those who knew him. He was a native of Gotha, Germany, and attained the age of 64 years, 3 months and 21 days. Like thousands of his countrymen he emigrated to America to seek freedom and fortune, arriving on the shores of the new world in 1851, going to St. Louis, where he remained one year, then removed to Muscatine, where he had resided ever since.

In May, 1855, he was united in marriage to Maria Geisler, from which union six children were born, four of whom- Ferdinand, jr., August, Louis and Mrs. Mark- survive the father; also, his loving wife.

The deceased had been a familiar character in and around Muscatine for the past forty years. He first engaged in the transfer business, establishing the first transfer line in the city. In 1807 he sold the transfer line to W.H. Snyder and engaged in the livery and sale stable business and from that into dealer in coal, lime and cement, in which business he was engaged at the time of his death. The deceased was a member of the German Evangelical church and of the Masonic order, having been a member of Hawkeye Lodge of this city for over thirty years.

Besides the immediate family, an aged mother, who is past 94 years, and five brothers, in Germany, and one brother in Kansas City, mourn his demise.

The funeral will be held from the family residence, 322 Iowa Avenue, Thursday afternoon, at 2 o’clock. The services will be conducted by the Rev. Scheib and the Masonic fraternity.

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