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BIOGRAPHIES: Surnames Beginning With "K"

From the book about Wabasha Co. Minnesota
Compiled by Dr. L. H. Bunnell
Published Chicago by H. H. Hill, Publishers, 1884
Republished Currently by Higginson Books

Kemp, Michael O., (page 1169), of the firm of Kemp & Schmidt, dealers in general merchandise, Lake City, was born in Tiffin, Ohio, October 18, 1848. His parents, Frank and Clara, were natives of Belgium. Michael attended the city schools of Tiffin till fourteen years old, when his parents removed to Galena, Illinois, and he began to earn his own livelihood. He was employed as clerk in a store till 1869, and then came to Wabasha, where he was similarly occupied. In 1877 the firm named above was organized, and began business in Lake City. Mr. Kemp is bookkeeper of the establishment, where are kept drygoods, clothing, furnishings, groceries and crockery, with annual sales of about twenty-five thousand dollars. In the great fire of 1882 the stock was destroyed, causing a loss in excess of insurance of two thousand dollars. The firm is now established at the corner of Center and Washington streets, with entrance on each, and owns the adjoining building on Washington. The subject of this paragraph came to Wabasha county with only his health and business talent, and has earned the reward of industry. In 1875 he wedded Miss Anna Hosch, born in Dubuque, Iowa, of German parents. The children given to this union have been christened as named below, in the order of birth: Francis, Clara and John.

War of Rebellion (Civil War)
Kennedy, John, (page 1238) one of Watopa's representative farmers, has gained that position by his energy and enterprise. He was born in the parish of Drumailey, County Leitrim, Ireland, April 30, 1836. He received a fair common-school education, and assisted his father in the management of a farm and store. When only eighteen years old he left home and kindred and set out for the poor man's asylum, America. The first vessel on which he took passage from Liverpool, the Guiding Star, was wrecked on the Irish coast and drifted into the harbor of Belfast. He then went on board the American and landed at New York three months after the first outset from Liverpool, January 16, 1854. For some time he was employed in a brickyard near New York city, and subsequently took charge of a farm at Fall River, Massachusetts, several years. He visited Minnesota in the summer of 1856 and returned to Fall River. On October 20, this year, he was married to Miss Ann Flanagan, who was born in County Monahan, Ireland, and is about her husband's age. In July, 1860, he took up permanent residence in Minnesota, having already acquired landed interests in Watopa. He took up the northwest quarter of section 7, where he still resides, and also purchased an adjoining claim. He now has three hundred and sixty acres, of which one hundred and eighty acres have been cleared by him of grub and trees. In 1883 his crops were: wheat, fifteen hundred bushels; barley, six hundred and thirty-three; oats, nine hundred and eighteen. Mr. Kennedy's executive ability was soon recognized by his fellow citizens, and nearly every year since his residence here he has been chosen to fill some town office. He was supervisor in 1867-8-9, and was chairman of the board in 1872-3-4-5, and in 1879-80-81. He has also served as justice of the peace, and has been clerk of his school district nearly ever since its organization. He is recognized as one of the leading democratic politicians of the county. The Roman Catholic church claims the whole family. There are seven children. The eldest, John F., is preparing for the priesthood in St. Francis Seminary at Milwaukee. The next two, James Edward and Constantine, are in mercantile business at Durban, Dakota. The rest, at home are christened, in order of birth, Sarah M., William Joseph, Matthias and Ellen Elizabeth. Mr. Kennedy served a year in the United States army, entering Co. D, 3d Minn. regt., in October 1864. He served in Sherman's march to the sea, but was in no active engagements.

Kennedy, M., (page 973) manufacturer and dealer in boots and shoes, also in hats, caps and gloves, on Main street, one door west from corner of Pembroke street, Herschy's block. This business was established by Mr. Kennedy in 1856, and with the exception of one year, 1861, has been continued to the present, a period altogether of twenty-six years. The house gives employment to two persons. Mr. Kennedy is a native of St. Andrews, Province of Quebec, Dominion of Canada. He learned his trade as shoemaker in his native town, and came direct from the Dominion to Wabasha in 1856. M. Kennedy is one of the pillars of the Congregational church in this city, a member of the board of trustees, and for seventeen years has been superintendent of its Sunday-school. He is unmarried, and one of the most universally respected men in the city.

Kepler, S. S., (page 1086) now and since 1876 of the Eau Claire "News," Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and also member of the firm of Kepler & Co., drygoods, was for twenty years a resident of this city, and for the greater part of that time actively engaged in trade on his own account. Mr. Kepler is a native of Pennsylvania, and having become acquainted with the conduct of business, as clerk, came to Wabasha in the spring of 1856 as clerk for the mercantile house of H. S. Allen & Co., lumbermen on the Chippewa, who had established a house here for the sale of general merchandise, and also a lumber yard. The manager of the business here, W. H. Creamer, went to New York in the summer of 1856, and dying there, the charge of affairs here was committed to Mr. Kepler until the arrival of W. J. Arnold that fall, who was at the head of business here until the stock was removed to Chippewa Falls, the following spring, and the business at Wabasha closed. In the fall of 1857 Mr. Kepler started trade on his own account, and the following spring was joined by W. S. Jackson, with whom he was associated in business directly until 1876, and indirectly until the time of Mr. Jackson's death some years later. Their first business house was on the south side of Main, just east of Hurd's Hotel, and from this location they removed in 1864 to the corner of Main and Alleghaney streets, where in 1879 they built what is now the corner storeroom of Masonic block, and occupied by E. J. Dugan, dry goods merchant. The firm of Kepler and Jackson shipped the first wheat ever shipped from Wabasha market in the fall of 1858, and were very actively identified with all the business interests and educational and religious affairs of the city. In addition to the lots and buildings owned by Mr. Kepler on the east side Wabasha, he has a tract of about fifty acres on the west side, platted in part, and containing some of the most eligible building sites in the city. Though no longer a resident, Mr. Kepler takes a deep interest in all that concerns the life of the city, and his face is frequently seen on these streets. Mr. Kepler was married in the city which for twenty years was his home, August 20, 1868, to Miss Kate McDougall, also a native of Pennsylvania. They have one son, W. S. Kepler, born in this city November 18, 1870.

Killiam, Rev. Thomas B. (page 1228 ~ index says T. R.), pastor Methodist Episcopal church, Lake City, is a native of the State of Delaware, and was born March 17, 1837. He was educated principally in high schools of Wilmington, and licensed to preach in 1859. In 1860 he was admitted to the Philadelphia conference on trial, and in 1864 was ordained elder and received into full connection. He remained in the Philadelphia conference till its division in 1868, when he was assigned to the new created (Wilmington) conference. In 1880 he came west and joined the west Wisconsin conference, and in 1881 was transferred to the Minnesota conference and stationed at Lake City. The Methodist Episcopal church of this city has been on the ascendancy during his three years' pastoral charge of the same. He was married in 1866, to Miss Maria C. Hitch, of Delaware, and has four children, one son and three daughters.

War of Rebellion (Civil War)
Indian Wars
Kimble, James L. (page 959 ~ deceased) was the first settler in Chester township, where he resided from April, 1855, until his death, which occurred May 9, 1881. He was a son of Nancy Ainsley and Erastus Kimble, and was born in Palmyra, Pike county, Pennsylvania, September 23, 1813. His parents were born in the same town, where their parents had dwelt since the Wyoming massacre. Up to eighteen years of age Mr. Kimble lived with his parents on the farm where he was born, attending the common schools; then removed to Marshall, Michigan. Here he was enrolled in the United States service for the Blackhawk war, and served until its close. Returning to Michigan, he was married, November 8, 1836, to Miss Maria J. Benson, daughter of Abijah and Burneche Benson, all natives of Swanton, Franklin county, Vermont. After some years of farming in Michigan, he was compelled to move on account of ill health. A year was spent at Joliet, and another at Summit, Illinois, and he then settled at Sheboygan, Wisconsin, tilling a farm there nine years. Here he joined the I.O.O.F., of which he was an enthusiastic member of full degree. In February, 1855, he set out from St. Paul to look up a farming location, and selected one-fourth of section 30, on which, with a companion, he remained three weeks, with a tent for shelter. A temporary shanty was put up to hold the claim, and he returned to St. Paul for his family, with which he came on the following April. A comfortable log house was then built, but this was long since superseded by a large and handsome frame dwelling. Mr. Kimble was many years a great sufferer from asthma, and was therefore unfitted for the active life for which he was by nature qualified. He was a staunch democrat, but took no part in public concerns. At the time of his death the estate included two hundred and thirteen acres of land lying on Trout Brook, and most beautifully situated for general farming. Six of the nine children are now living. Emily J., the eldest, died at four years old. De Grove A. served in Co. G, 3d Minn. Vols., and died of wounds received in the battle of Wood Lake. Albert L. served two and one-half years in Hatch's battalion at Fort Abercrombie; married Ada Martin, and resides with mother on homestead; has one child, Jennie Albertie. Nancy B. died at eighteen months old. Sarah J. is now Mrs. L. P. Hudson, dwells at Lake City. Erastus B. at Aberdeen, Dakota; Ada and Ida, twins (the former married J. L. Phillay), lives in Appleton, this state; latter is Mrs. Hugh R. Blanding, at Aberdeen. Charles D., the youngest, is at Aberdeen.

Kinsella, Matthew, Jr., (page 968) farmer, was born August, 1832. When he was about twenty years of age he came to the United States, and settled in Madison county, Illinois. After three years he came to Chippewa lumber region, remaining a few years. He then came to the present farm, as one of the earliest settlers of Oakwood township, enduring the hardships of those early days. He liked the wooded region best, and on that account chose his present farm. It contains one hundred and sixty acres, with enough added since his settlement to make seven hundred and forty acres of land - five hundred and forty under cultivation and some woodland. His farm is well improved, and one of the best in the township. He is one of the most devoted members of the Catholic church, and a leader in public enterprises of value. He has been township treasurer and chairman of supervisors for a number of years. He has been a democrat, but is now more independent, and is one of our most influential reliable citizens. He was married (the first in the township) in September, 1859, to Catherine Finley, native of Ireland. He has four children.

Kinney, Alvin, (page 970) the genial proprietor of the Franklin House, Mazeppa, was born in Otselic, Shenango county, New York State, in December, 1831. He received some schooling at the district school, and commenced early in life making his own way in the world by working on a farm by the month. The season of 1854 found him in Sangamon county, Illinois, where, in the fall of that year, he hired out to Edwards & Felt, at twenty dollars a month and board, to feed stock through the winter, with the understanding that when the cattle were shipped the following spring, if he desired he could go along as far as Albany at the same pay. The corn for the stock was bought of neighboring farmers, and he had to haul it and feed one hundred head daily. When the stock was shipped in the spring he went through to Albany, and from there he returned as far as Utica, from which place he proceeded to his home, where he hired out on a farm at which he continued for a couple of years. At about that time a great emigration was going on, and mostly to Minnesota. He had no thought of Minnesota, as it had been his intention to return to Illinois; but, being in company of several of his acquaintances one Friday evening, who were to start on the following Monday, he became enthused and decided that night to accompany them. Accordingly, the next morning, he acquainted his father of his determination, who remarked that he thought it might be a good idea. The company came by rail to Dunlieth, Iowa, and from there by steamboat to Red Wing, and from there to Mazeppa he came on foot, arriving at Mazeppa in the spring of 1856. Here he pre-empted a quarter-section of land, proving up his claim, and subsequently bought up the claim of another man. In the fall of 1856 he went to Winona to take out his patent on his claim, but found the expenses greater than he had calculated on. An acquaintance, named Jost. Smith, was along with him, and when their business was completed they took passage by boat to Red Wing. On arriving there in the evening, they both discovered that they were without money; this situation required the exercise of financial ability, so they resolved themselves into a committee to provide ways and means. They were too much American to beg, and too good to steal, so the committee soon decided that their only chance was to either walk all night or sleep out. But, it being late in the fall and too cold for that, it was not to be thought of. The night was dark, but on hunting around they found an old shed, with nothing in it but a cutter. Here they took up their lodging, one sitting for awhile in the cutter while the other walked up and down to keep warm. At the first intimation of approaching day they started on foot for home, but had gone only about seven miles when Mr. Kinney discovered in his overcoat pocket seventy-five cents, which, had it been found the evening before, would have been sufficient to procure comfortable lodgings. In those days prairie fires occurred every year, burning over the surface of the whole country and leaving it perfectly black, giving it a desolate and somber appearance. On going to Red Wing on foot, shortly after one of these fires, he saw in the distance some strange object that appeared to be moving, but which he could not make out. He had not long to wait, however, as he soon discovered that the strange object was a party of Indians moving with their families and household goods. Here he witnessed for the first time what appeared to him the most crude yet novel mode of transportation; two poles, fifteen or twenty feet in length, were fastened one on each side of a pony by one end, while the other end dragged on the ground. Here, he thought, was displayed the inventive faculty which indicated progression. In 1873 he traded farm property for the Franklin House, which he has continued to run. He has been deputy sheriff two terms. In April, 1857, he was married to Miss Adeline Hutchins, then of Mazeppa, but formerly of Shenango county, New York State. They lost their only child.

Kinney, Lucius, (page 1092) farmer, is an elder brother of the above (Wesley Kinney). His parents lived during the year 1833 on a farm in Georgetown, Madison county, and Lucius Kinney was born there on September 27. He was reared on the home farm in Otselic, and received a common school education. January 9, 1854, he was married, the bride being Miss Lydia Bishop, a native of Otselic. Her parents, John and Lydia Bishop, were of New Hampshire birth. Mr. Kinney came to Minnesota in 1856, arriving in Mazeppa September 3, and took up government land in Zumbrota township. A year later he sold out and went back to New York. For sixteen years he engaged in farming there, most of the time on his father's homestead, and again took up a residence in Minnesota. After a stay of two years in Lake City, he bought a farm of seventy acres of land near Mazeppa, in Goodhue county, and has ever since dwelt in this village and tilled the land. Mr. Kinney has always had a horror of debt, and went without many things desired rather than violate his cash rule. He has always been a democrat. Himself and wife joined the Methodist Episcopal church many years ago. They have two sons. The elder, Frank Clinton, born June 29, 1856, resides in Smyrna, New York, where he married Miss Catharine Wentworth. John Wesley, March 30, 1860, dwells with parents.

Kinney, Wesley, (page 1091) attorney, is a grandson of Dr. Abijah Kinney, of Hartford, Connecticut. Odgen, father of Wesley Kinney, married Huldah Walker, who was born, like himself, in Otselic, New York. They died within two weeks of each other, Mrs. Kinney on April 19, and her husband May 2, 1882, and are buried in the same town. Three Kinney brothers came from England and settled in Maine, New Hampshire and Connecticut, respectively, and this family is descended from the latter. Wesley Kinny was born in Otselic, Chenango county, New York, December 15, 1837. His life was passed on the home farm till sixteen years of age, attending the common schools. His education was completed at the academy in Charlottesville, New York. In 1857 he began reading law at Delhi with William Murray, Jr., and a year and a half later entered the law office of Wait & Berry, at Norwich, New York. In May, 1860, he was admitted to practice in the superior court, at Binghamton. He became a resident of Mazeppa in 1861, and the following year was admitted to the United States district court. He soon became associated with F. M. Wilson, and practiced at Lake City eight years, during most of which time he was city justice. Returning to Mazeppa, he continued his practice, and has done much for the advancement of the village. He drew up its charter and most of its ordinances, and was active in securing its incorporation; was first recorder of the village. In 1882 he bought a farm of sixty acres, partly in the corporation, partly in Pine Island township, on which he took up his residence, and to which he gives part of his attention. On August 13, 1865, he was united in wedlock with Acsie A. Ford, daughter of one of Mazeppa's early pioneers. She was born at Lebanon, New York, May 29, 1846. Their children were born and christened as herewith noted: February 8, 1870, Maude; August 5, 1873, Alvin C.; May 23, 1883, Kent Ford. Mr. Kinney is very liberal on religious questions. In politics he is a democrat. He was a member of the A.O.U.W. until the Mazeppa lodge was abandoned.

Peter Kirns, (page not recorded by transcriber ~ not listed in the index) lumberman, is a partner of M. E. Drury of Wabasha. The business of the firm of Drury & Kirns consists in towing lumber, and from the date of its establishment in 1878, until the commencement of the towing season in 1883, they were engaged in towing from the Eau Claire mills in Wisconsin to points as far down the river as St. Louis. Operations were conducted by floating the materials for these rafts (dimensions, timbers, boards, lath and shingles) down the Chippewa to this point, where they were coupled into rafts containing from two million to three million feet of stuff, exclusive of the top load, shingles and lath, and from this point towed down the Mississippi. Since the beginning of the present season, floating down the Chippewa has been discontinued, and their operations are coupling rafts at this place and towing down the river. They have at present two boats in their trade, the J. G. Chapman and the Lizzie Gardner, and with a good stage of water the round trip is made from here to St. Louis and return in about twelve days. Last year the company kept three boats on the river, but the other, the Peter Kirns, was sold to the United States and is now used in the government improvement works on the lower Mississippi, at Plums Point, Louisiana. The rafter J. G. Chapman was built expressly for the company, at Metropolis, Ohio, in 1880, and cost twenty thousand dollars. Her dimensions are, length over all one hundred and forty-five, beam twenty-eight feet, hold four feet. She has a full cabin, has two steel boilers, and her engines are of fourteen-inch bore, with six-foot stroke. The Lizzie Gardner was purchased in 1880 at Cincinnati, Ohio, to replace their iron steamer, J. G. Chapman, which sunk at the mouth of the Illinois river in the month of June, 1880. The Gardner cost seven thousand dollars. She is one hundred and thirty-five feet over all, twenty-two feet beam, double boilers, and her engines are fourteen-inch bore, with five-foot stroke. The company find constant employment for their boats, and including boats' crews and raftsmen employ a force of about sixty men during the season. Their operations aggregate a total tonnage of sixty million feet of lumber during the season, exclusive of what is designated top load, lath, pickets and shingles.

War of Rebellion (Civil War)
Knapp, Hon. Francis W.: (page 1090) The subject of this sketch was the third child in a family of five children born to Charles B. and Catherine (McIntyre) Knapp, the former a native of New York State, and the latter of pure Scotch descent. Mr. Knapp was born in Ottawa City (then By-Town), Canada, April 17, 1838. He attended school in Canada for a few years. His father, who was a cabinetmaker, removed with his family, in 1847, to Medina, Dane county, Wisconsin, where he located one hundred and sixty acres of government land for a home, and continued to work at his trade, and also followed the business of an architect and profession of a patent-lawyer. While the family continued to reside in Medina, Francis received a good common school education, and, being of a studious disposition, was sent to the State University, at Madison, Wisconsin, where he intended to complete a full collegiate course, but, owing to defective health, was obliged to abandon this plan at the close of the first year. He now turned his attention to farming and school-teaching for two or three years. In May, 1860, he came to Minnesota and bought from Levi Emery eighty acres on section 35, Highland township, and his family came the following fall. His farm now contains two hundred and eighteen acres, on sections 34 and 35, on which he has some fine improvements. He was married December 24, 1859, to Hannah E. King, daughter of Jaira M. and Maria (Lum) King, a native of Montville, Ohio, where she was born June 11, 1839. Their union has been blessed by five children, namely, Grace M., born August 23, 1861, a pupil in the State Normal, at Winona; Hannah E., born April 17, 1866; also a student of the Normal; Albert H., born June 26, 1868; Catherine M., born July 13, 1871; and Charles F., born June 11, 1875. Mr. Knapp has taught school several times since coming to Minnesota. He was a soldier in the 10th Minn. for three years, and lost two fingers from his right hand in the last charge at Nashville, for which he draws a pension of ten dollars per month, and ranked as sergeant when discharged. Mr. Knapp is a republican in politics and has taken quite an active part in political contests. He has been treasurer, assessor and supervisor of the township, and was a member of the lower house of the Minnesota legislature in the winter of 1867-8.

Konnig, Clements, (page 1124) blacksmith and farmer; shop and six acres of land on Sec. 28, R. 11, T. 111, and leases about eighty-five acres in vicinity. Mr. Konnig is a native of Hanover, learned his trade in his native place, and came to America in 1857, settling for some years in Illinois. In 1864 he came to this county, built his blacksmith-shop, and for the past nineteen years has followed his trade where he is now located. In 1859 he married Theresa Logan. They have six children, all at home, the elder boys working the farm, on which there are twenty-five head of stock, sixty-five acres of wheat, twelve acres of oats, and twenty acres of corn. The children's names are: Joseph, born March 22, 1861; Bendict, born August 21, 1867; Frank, born March 9, 1873; Emma, born April 1, 1875; Caroline, born June 17, 1877; Theresa, born November 12, 1879.

Kopp, Jacob, (page 1118) was born in Wiedlisbach, Canton Bern, Switzerland, on April 8, 1830. The Swiss home of the Kopp family was a small farm, but a beautiful place known as Mosrien. Frederick and Barbara Kopp resided here, and raised a family of six children, Jacob being the fourth. Jacob received a good common school education, after which he served four years in the Swiss army. In June, 1851, he married Barbra Giesbuler, and three years later brought his family to America. He first worked on a farm near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, then removed to Watertown, Wisconsin, where he remained but a few weeks. His next move was to go to a place about thirty miles from Portage, where he worked in the pineries and on a farm for three years; after which he spent four years clearing up a farm near Fredonia, in the same state. He came to Highland township, and bought a claim of one hundred and forty acres near the Watkins mill, in 1863. After buying and selling a number of times, he finally purchased the place on which he now resides-eighty acres on section 26, Highland, in 1870. He has five children, viz: John, born in Switzerland, residing in Lake City, Minnesota; Louisa, born in Wisconsin, and Louis and Frederick, born in Minnesota, and a daughter Emma, also a native of Minnesota. Mr. Kopp was one of the original members of the Lutheran church of Highland.

Kuehn, Lucas, (page 963) general merchant, corner Main and Alleghaney streets. Mr. Kuehn has been a resident of the county since 1855, a resident of the city since 1858, and one of it business men since 1862, at which date he established a bakery, and two years later, abandoning that branch of business, engaged in drygoods trade, which he has now successfully conducted for twenty years. His block, two store-rooms of which are occupied with stock, fronts sixty feet on Main street and eighty feet on Allegheney. It is a solid brick and stone structure, two stories and basement, the upper story occupied for offices, storage, and the composing and editorial rooms of the Wabasha "Herald." He has also a branch store about sixteen miles from the city in Glasgow township. The corner building of the block was erected in 1868, the forty feet on the west in 1874. In 1879 Mr. Kuehn erected the Commercial Hotel corner of Main and Bailly street, which will be more particularly noted elsewhere. He is also president of the Wabasha bank, and in every way, as a liberal and public-spirited citizen, has fully identified himself with the interests of the city. Mr. Kuehn reports a gratifying increase of trade over that of 1882, sales in his clothing department being twenty-five to fifty per cent in advance of previous season. His establishment gives employment to a force of from six to eight clerks, and one wagon for the delivery of goods. He is also engaged in furnishing ties and timber for the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railway, his contracts averaging about one thousand dollars per month for the past ten or twelve months. Mr. Kuehn is a native of Baden, Germany, born October 18, 1834, came to America in 1852, and three years later settled in this city. He married Miss Clarrie Genthner of his native city, born there December 8, 1840. Marriage celebrated in this city November 30, 1858. Their children are Magdalena, born November 23, 1861; Louisa, July 11, 1866; Emil, November 27, 1868; Clara, August 16, 1871; Frank, April 17, 1877.

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