My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890.  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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CHRISTIAN K. HERSHEY. The career of this young gentleman, now Mayor of Osborn, Greene County, and editor of the Osborn Local , has been one of painstaking industry, studiousness, and zeal. The lives of few men of his years present so striking an example of the success that can be obtained through determination and good conduct, and to few is greater respect awarded, or a better position secured.

The Hershey family is of German extraction, the first of the name whom we note being Abraham Hershey, a farmer and stockman of Pennsylvania. In Lancaster County, of that State, his son, also named Abraham, was born, and there learned the trade of a painter. While a young man he removed to Buffalo, N. Y., where he worked at his trade, and where he married Miss Fannie Long. The wife and an infant daughter died there, and soon after the bereaved husband came to Clark County, Ohio. There he continued his former occupation, and after his second marriage located on a small farm, but still followed his trade, at which he has labored forty years. He now lives near Medway, and although quite old, is still hale and hearty. He belongs to the Mennonite Church. His second wife died in 1863, and he contracted a third matrimonial alliance.

The mother of our subject was born in Bethel Township, Clark County, and bore the maiden name of Anna Kline. Her father, C. D. Kline, a native of Lancaster County, Pa., ran a tailor shop there until some time in the 30’s, when he came to Ohio in a wagon. He settled in the township in which she was born, purchasing a tract of land which he improved, also continuing to work at his trade. Although a poor man when he came here, he is now worth about $10,000, which has been acquired by his own efforts. He is still living on his farm, and has now reached the age of seventy eight years. He is a member of the Mennonite Church. When he came to this section, the site of Springfield could have been bought for $500, and he was anxious to purchase it; his brother Samuel had more money than he, but would not furnish him security, and he was not able to purchase without it. Mrs. Anna (Kline) Hershey bore her husband two children, the subject of this sketch being the first-born, and the other, a son, who died in infancy.

The third marriage of our subject’s father, was blessed by the birth of nine children: Mary is now at home; Anna, Mrs. Kauffman, lives in Osborn; Abraham resides in Ansonia, Darke County; Harry and Andrew live in Bethel Township, Clark County; Daniel is with our subject; Hettie lives with her sister, Mrs. Kauffman, in Osborn; John and Meno are at home.

C. K. Hershey was born January 9, 1861, in Bethel Township, Clark County, and reared and educated there until eight years old. He then went to live with his grandfather Kline, having good common school advantages until twelve years old, when he was thrown on his own resources. He engaged in farm work summers, and in winters worked for his board and attended school, determined to acquire a better education and fit himself for a good position in life. At the age of sixteen years, he was able to pass an examination and secure a county teacher’s certificate, although he did not engage in teaching, but worked at the painter’s trade.

In 1880 young Hershey came to Osborn and entered the employ of J. H. Barkman, with whom he remained eight years. Beginning as an errand boy, and without a dollar in money, (having spent all for books the previous winter), he worked his way to the position of head clerk within two years. In 1881 he spent two months in attending the Miami Commercial College at Dayton, and in 1882 attended three months and was graduated, after which he took charge of the books of the firm, holding the position of head clerk and book-keeper until the fall of 1884. Having saved his money, he then became a partner with a one-fourth interest in the establishment, with which he continued his connection until January, 1888, when he sold his interest.

The next enterprise of Mr. Hershey was a journalistic one, as upon selling his mercantile interest he bought the printing office of the Osborn Local, and became its editor. The sheet which he conducts is a seven column folio, which is newsy and popular; a job office is also run. When Mr. Hershey became of age he was elected City Clerk, and held the office four years, after which he became Assistant Postmaster. These duties did not prevent his attention to the mercantile business in which he had embarked.

An important step in the life of Mr. Hershey, was taken March 13, 1888, when in Dayton he was united in marriage with Miss Lettie L. Kepler, an educated and refined young woman, who makes home attractive, and is a credit to the society in which she moves. She was born in Montgomery County, her father, William Kepler, being a prominent farmer of Perry Township. Mr. and Mrs. Hershey have one child, Granville, horn August 5, 1889.

Mr. Hershey belongs to the Knights of Pythias, and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, in Osborn, being Secretary of the latter lodge, and a charter member of the former. He is an active Democrat, and a member of the County Central Committee. He belongs to the Lutheran Church, is Treasurer of the Sunday-school, and teacher of the Bible class, his example adding weight to the precepts which he unfolds, and proving an influence for good throughout the entire community.

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This family biography is one of the many biographies included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890. 

View additional Greene County, Ohio family biographies here: Greene County, Ohio Biographies

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