My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in The History of Cole County, Missouri published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1889.  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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Adam Opel, a contractor and builder of Jefferson City, was born in Bavaria, Germany, in 1821, and is a son of John and Margaret (Keisling) Opel, also natives of Bavaria, who immigrated to America in 1849, the father dying before the family reached St. Louis. Our subject worked as a common laborer in St. Louis eleven months, when he went to Cole County, and settled in Liberty Township, where he devoted his attention to farming until 1852. In the latter year he removed to Jefferson City, and after engaging in teaming one year went into a cabinet-maker’s shop to learn the trade, which he followed about one year and then turned his attention to the carpenter’s trade. He is now one of the best contractors and carpenters in the city, and has built many of the most prominent residences in Jefferson, employing from three to ten hands. He is also interested in the manufacture of brick, and is an enterprising citizen. Mr. Opel was first married in Germany, to Barbara Schoetel, who died in Liberty Township, Cole County, in 1851, leaving one child, George, now a contractor of Columbus, Mo. Mr. Opel next married L. Denking, by whom he had two children: Carrie, wife of William Danes, of Jefferson City, and Charlie, now in partnership with his father. His second wife dying, our subject married, in 1879, Margaret Mayers, and this union has been blessed with three children, Louie, Hilda and Anna. Mr. and Mrs. Opel are consistent Christians, the former a member of the Baptist Church, where he has served as trustee, and the latter worshiping at the Presbyterian Church. Both take an active and prominent part in all church work. Mr. Opel has several times served as city alderman, and is very prominent in business circles of the city. He served in the Home Guards and also the State Militia during the late war, and in politics his sympathies are now with the Republican party. He owns considerable property in Jefferson City, and is held in high esteem by all who know him. Mr. Opel has a brother, Capt. John Opel, who is also a carpenter of Jefferson City.

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This family biography is one of 127 biographies included in The History of Cole County, Missouri published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Cole County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Cole County, Missouri family biographies here: Cole County, Missouri Biographies

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