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Biographical Sketch
Henry Diesbach
Atchison County, Kansas


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The following transcription is from a 750 page book titled "Genealogical and Biographical Record of North-Eastern Kansas, dated 1900.  These have been diligently transcribed and generously contributed by Penny R. Harrell, please give her a very big Thank You for her hard work!

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Henry Diesbach, deceased, was for many years a prominent resident of Atchison, Kansas, coming to the city at an early period in its development and took an active part in the promotion of the business interests which have contributed to its material growth and prosperity.  A native of Germany, he was born in Heidelberg, Baden, on the 11th of September, 1819, and in accordance with the laws of his native land attended school between the ages of six and fourteen years.

Entering upon his business career, he became familiar with the methods followed in mercantile establishments, but, believing that the new world offered better opportunities to young men of ambition and resolute purpose, he bade adieu to the fatherland and crossed the Atlantic to the new world in 1843, landing in New Orleans.  He made his way to Frankfort, Kentucky, and engaged in the shoe business, being a shoemaker by trade.

There, in 1853, he was naturalized as a citizen of the United States.  But the west attracted him and in 1858 he came to the rapidly developing city of Atchison, where he established a general store on a small scale.  He applied himself diligently to the building up of a good business and in order to gain the results he desired he followed most commendable methods.  In trade transactions his honesty was above question and at times he was courteous and earnestly desired to please his patrons.

These qualities were the means of bringing him a constantly increasing patronage, in order to meet which he enlarged his facilities from time to time.  Prosperity attended his efforts and he became the possessor of a handsome competence, leaving to his family a large estate.  He made judicious investments in realty, becoming the owner of three business houses and eight dwellings, besides other property.

In 1859 Mr. Diesbach was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth L. Leu, a native of Switzerland, and the second daughter of Jacob and Verana (Kessler) Leu.  Her parents had eight children.  Mr. and Mrs. Diesbach had no children of their own, but reared a daughter, Miss Bertha Studer.  Mr. Diesbach became a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in Frankfort, Kentucky, where he was in the shoe business a few years before he came to Atchison, and affiliated with the organization at Atchison after coming to the west.

He was an enterprising, industrious man, whose success in life was the result of his own well directed efforts.  The obstacles in his path he overcame by determined purpose and by resolute will, steadily working his way upward to a position among the substantial citizens of his adopted state.  All who knew him esteemed him for his sterling worth and his death, which occurred on the 8th of April, 1893, was mourned by many friends.

His remains were laid to rest in Mount Vernon cemetery in Atchison, but his memory is enshrined in the hearts of many who knew him.  He was very just, true and upright, and in many respects his example was well worthy of emulation.  Since her husband's death Mrs. Diesbach has made quite extensive investments in real estate.  She has built two dwelling houses in Atchison, which she rents, together with other property left her by her husband, and in this way she has not only provided a good income for herself but has been a benefit to the community by furnishing employment to many men.

She possesses excellent business qualifications and is conducting her affairs in a most able manner.  A member of the Evangelical church in Atchison, all who know her esteem her for her sterling worth and her kindly manner.  In 1876 Mr. and Mrs. Diesbach visited Europe, spending six months in Germany.

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Last update: Monday, January 09, 2006 01:06:41

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