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Below is a family biography included in The History of Jefferson County, Missouri published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1888.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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Martin Zimpfer, dealer in general merchandise, machinery, etc., hotel proprietor, saloonist, and postmaster at Antonia, was born in Baden, Germany, in 1849, and when but five years of age, in company with the family, except the mother, who died just before reaching the sea coast, came to the United States, settled in Jefferson County, and here the father died about four years later, leaving four children, Martin being the second. The parents’ names were Martin and Christiana Zimpfer, and the father was a farmer and general trader. Martin was thrown upon his own resources at the age of nine, and grew to manhood without any education except what he picked up by his own efforts. He was a close observer, quick to learn, energetic and persevering, and in a few years had a fair knowledge of general business, which, together with a few years of practical experience, has made him one of the most successful and enterprising business men of Jefferson County. His immense business is all the result of his own efforts. He began for himself by working for farmers, chopping wood, hauling charcoal, etc., and worked four years for Capt. Anton Yerger, and two years as a teamster for Joseph Yerger. He was also coachman for two years in St. Louis, and after that was teamster for some time. In 1880 he returned to Jefferson County and engaged in merchandising with Joseph Yerger, he having charge of a store at Sandy Creek, and Mr. Yerger of a store at Antonia. This continued until March, 1881, when the property at Antonia was destroyed by fire, and Mr. Yerger killed by an unknown party. Mr. Zimpfer then removed his stock from Sandy Creek to Antonia, where he rented a room, but in 1884 he erected a large two-story store and hotel building, where he has since been carrying on an extensive and thriving business. He was postmaster at Sandy Creek, and has been postmaster at Antonia ever since he first came there. October 29, 1884, Mrs. Louisa Yerger, widow of Joseph Yerger, became his wife. The result of this union was the birth of two children, one now living, named Ida. Mrs. Zimpfer died January 6, 1887, and August 21 of the same year he married Miss Josephine Kassel, a native of Jefferson County, and the daughter of Adolph Kassel. Mr. Zimpfer is strictly Independent in his political views, and cast his first presidential vote for Gen. Garfield. He is a member of the Sons of Hermann and of the Masonic fraternity.

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This family biography is one of 224 biographies included in The History of Jefferson County, Missouri published in 1888.  For the complete description, click here: Jefferson County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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