Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. [Revised ed.] Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1919, c1918. 5 v. (xlviii, 2530 p., [155] leaves of plates): ill., maps (some fold.), ports.; 27 cm.

Alex. E. Bissing

ALEX. E. BISSING. Some of the thriftiest communities in Kansas were settled many years ago by people from the great central area of Russia, and Kansas has always appreciated the many sturdy elements in the character of these people. A considerable colony of them located in Ellis County, most of whom came from Saratov and that section of Southeastern Russia, and among them were the Bissings.

Mr. Bissing, one of the leading merchants of Hays, was born in that Russian locality December 15, 1869. His birthplace was Catherine, and when his parents and other colonists from that vicinity came to Kansas they gave the same name to the community in Ellis County where they settled.

Justus Bissing, father of Alex. E. Bissing, was born at Catherine, Russia, in 1824. He is now ninety-four years of age and is living retired with his son. In early life he followed the trade of goldsmith. In 1875 he brought his family to the United States and settled in Ellis County, where he homesteaded eighty acres. This homestead he sold later and has since lived retired at Hays. He is a democrat and a Catholic. He married Margaretta Guenther, who was born at Catherine, Russia, in 1830, and died at Hays, Kansas, in 1908. Their living children are: Alois, who has a rooming house at Hays; Justus, proprietor of a machine shop at Hays; Jacob, now living retired at Hays; Alex. E.; and Peter, a music teacher at Chicago.

Alex. E. Bissing was about six years old when his father came to Ellis County. He received his education in the schools of Hays, and at the age of fourteen began supporting himself, and from a poor boy has won a position of prosperity and esteem in this community. He first worked in a store, and his experience and careful saving enabled him in 1900 to buy out a small general merchandise stock, and under his aggressive management the business has grown until it is one of the chief places of mercantile supply in Ellis County. He owns the store building on North Main Street and his residence at the corner of Fourth Street and Normal Avenue.

Mr. Bissing has also been active in local affairs, serving on the city council and one term as mayor. He is a democrat and a member of the Catholic Church. He is a third degree Knight of Columbus and a member of St. Joseph Council No. 1325 at Hays.

In 1891 Mr. Bissing married Miss Pauline Giebler, daughter of John and Margaretta (Fischer) Giebler. Her parents are farmers at Catherine, Kansas. Mrs. Bissing died in 1893 at Hays, and her only child, Henrietta, died when nine months old. At Catherine, Kansas, Mr. Bissing married Miss Emilia Giebler, a sister of his first wife. They are the parents of six children: Felix, born January 9, 1897, a graduate of the Koester School of Window Dressing at Chicago, and now the capable aid to his father in the store; Felicitas, born December 9, 1899, is a graduate of the Hays High School; Lidwina, born March 5, 1901, also a graduate of the Hays High School; Zita, born March 20, 1903, a sophomore in the Hays High School; Marcell, born in December, 1905; and Petronilla, born October 13, 1906, both attending the local schools.

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