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Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 4/4/2020 at 22:55:47

WILLIAM WERNER was born near Frankfort-on-Main, Germany, January 6th, 1829. His parents were Philip and Catharine Werner. In 1847, he left his native country and came to America, landing in New Orleans, June 7th, 1847. He then ascended the Mississippi River as far as St. Louis, where he remained three weeks. He then left St. Louis and went to Nauvoo, Ill., and remained about one year and a half, when he came to Fort Madison, where he stayed two years. In Fort Madison, Mr. Werner opened a select school, where he taught the English, German and French languages, and singing; he also had a class of pupils outside, to whom he gave instructions in music. Here we may remark that, having received his education in a seminary, he had remarkable success as a teacher.

In 1851, Mr. Werner moved to West Point, where he opened a drug store. And received the appointment of Postmaster, which position he held for eight years. In 1859 he moved out to his farm, situated a short distance south of town, where he now resides. In 1848 Mr. Werner was joined in marriage to Magdalene Peters; she was born in Germany in 1829, and came to this country in 1833. By this marriage ten children were born, seven of whom are now living. In 1869, his wife departed this life, a devoted member of the German Lutheran Church. In 1871, Mr. Werner was married to Mrs. Eliza Mary Rebecca Leman, of Keokuk; one child has been born.

Mr. Werner was educated in the common schools of Germany, where he remained until fourteen years of age; he then studied with a professional teacher three years, a requirement made of all who expect to follow the profession of teaching. He then entered a seminary. In this way he got an education that is superior to that obtained in our common schools. He is also an educated scholar in music, being a master of all the instruments in common use at the present day. When Mr. Werner came to this country he had no money, and but few friends; by constant labor and good management he has become possessor of a good farm well improved. He has always been a Democrat, poling his first vote for Franklin Pierce. In 1868, he was elected to the Legislature. While there he saw with sorrow the corruption so common to our halls of Legislation. Had he entered the various rings, and given them his hearty support, he would probably have been reelected, but this he scorned to do, and while there, opposed the rings with all his power. He has also held the office of Justice of the Peace for ten years, and served four years as Supervisor, besides filling other responsible positions. We may close with the remark that no person has guarded the interests of the people more carefully, while in public office, than Mr. Werner.

Illustrated Historical ATLAS of Lee County, IOWA
A. T. Andreas
Chicago, ILL.

Transcription by Mary H. Cochrane, Volunteer


Lee Biographies maintained by Sherri Turner.
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