My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in The History of Washington 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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W. J. Slais has been closely identified with the business interests of Potosi for the past twenty-two years. He was born in Bohemia December 24, 1840. His parents were natives of the same country. His father, John, was a miner and immigrated with his family to the United States in 1848, first settling in Pittsburgh, Penn., whence he went to St. Louis, where the mother died, and the father then moved to Kingston, Ill., where he lived until his death in 1878. W. J. learned the trade of a saddle and harness-maker; he traveled and worked at his trade in different places, and during the war he was living in New Orleans at the time Gen. Butler took possession of that city; he obtained from him a pass and went by way of New York to St. Louis. He located in Potosi in 1866, and opened a shop, but was burned out and lost about $900. Not discouraged, he resumed business in the harness and saddle line and added a stock of furniture, but again met a similar fate, losing about $1,200. Phoenix-like, he arose from the ashes, and opened once more a large and well-selected stock in his line, and is doing a satisfactory business. His is the only exclusive house of the kind in the county. He commenced without means and what he has accumulated is the fruit of his own labor. He was married in 1865 to Miss M. Ziska. To them were born two daughters, both deceased. Mrs. Slais died October 3, 1887.

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This family biography is one of 138 biographies included in The History of Washington County, Missouri published in 1888.  For the complete description, click here: Washington County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

To view additional Washington County, Missouri family biographies, click here

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