Biography - Samuel Kessinger

SAMUEL W. KESSINGER, B. S. Centuries ago it was said that a "prophet is not without honor save in his own country." This, however, seems to have lost its force in the present generation in America, for talent and genius are recognized very quickly and fostered, and, it is to be regretted, flattered, until some times the divine spirit is lost in egotism.
Mr. Kessinger, who is the editor of the Litchfield Monitor, is one of the best products of the city and one of which the city is very proud. He was born here September 25, 1867, and is a son of Thomas G. Kessinger, who was a prominent settler and located here at an early day. Mr. Kessinger, Sr., was born in Grayson County, Ky., January 1, 1832, his family being of German origin. Grandfather Josiah Kessinger, who is eighty years old, still lives twelve miles southeast of Litchfield. On first coming to this State, he settled near Scottville, Macoupin County, in 1837. There he resided for some time, engaged in farming.
Our subject's father made his home for a number of years with his uncle, William B. Peebles, of Shaw's Point Township, and while there learned the blacksmith's trade. He married Miss Rebecca Cheney, of Macoupin County, but born in New York May 5, 1834. After his marriage he settled in Zanesville, this county, and was employed at his trade. He came here in 1856, when the country was crude, the village having been platted in 1854. Here he established a blacksmith shop. He was in early days an Abolitionist, at a time when there were few with those views here, and when it cost a man considerable to maintain his views. In 1870, he engaged in the general merchandise business and labored actively until near the time of his death, which occurred May 16, 1890. He left a widow and two children: Josiah S., now a merchant of Raymond, and our subject.
Samuel Kessinger acquired his early education while under the home roof, and then attended Blackburn University at Carlinville, Ill. He assumed proprietorship of the Monitor March 1, 1887, he being at that time the youngest editor in the State of Illinois. Mr. Kessinger carried on the main work of the sheet until September 1, 1891, when he became sole owner. The paper is now an eight-page, six-column quarto. It is based upon the Republican principles as far as politics are concerned, but, first of all, is a newsy sheet. It has a wide circulation through the western part of Montgomery County, and also through the eastern part of Macoupin County.
Our subject became a benedict June 27, 1888, at which time he was united in marriage to Miss Bessie Caldwell, of Zanesville, daughter of Dr. G. W. Caldwell. Two children brighten and gladden their home, a boy named Harold, and a little girl called Ruth. Both Mr. and Mrs. Kessinger are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The latter, like her husband, is a graduate of Blackburn University.

Extracted 29 Nov 2016 by Norma Hass from 1892 Portrait and Biographical Record of Montgomery and Bond Counties, Illinois, pages 139-140.

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