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.

Charles P. Achenbach

CHARLES P. ACHENBACH has been one of the leading figures in the affairs of Hardtner for several years, beginning with a small store and a small stock of goods has built up a merchandise emporium which is the pride of the entire community.

Mr. Achenbach, who is a nephew of the founder of Hardtner, Jacob Achenbach, was born at Taylorville, Illinois, December 21, 1880. His grandfather was John Achenbach, who was born in Germany in 1824, and brought his family to the United States in 1860. He followed farming in Christian County, Illinois, until he died there in 1901. His son, Philip Achenbach, born in Germany in 1853, was a child of seven years when his parents came to the United States. The family first located in Greene County, Illinois, and Philip was reared there. He married in Christian County, Illinois, lived on a farm near Taylorville the rest of his life, and died in 1918. He was a successful business man and lived retired from 1898. He was not inclined to participate in poltiics[sic] for sake of office, was a republican and at one time was honored with the office of county supervisor. Philip Achenbach married Adaline Gessell, born in Greene County, Illinois, in 1855 and died at Taylorville in 1918. There were born to them five children: George, who is associated with his brother Charles at Hardtner; Fred, a farmer in Christian County, Illinois; Henry, also a farmer in that county; Charles P.; and Bertha, wife of Charles Estes, a dairyman in Christian County, Illinois.

Charles P. Achenbach received his education in the rural schools of Illinois and in 1897 took a business course in a college at Springfield, Illinois. He acquired a practical business knowledge by a thorough course of training as a clerk in different stores. For five years he was employed in a shoe store at Taylorville and then in a dry goods store for six years. It was with this equipment that he came to Hardtner, Kansas, January 15, 1910. He went to work in a small store and in August, 1913, bought out the business. When he first became connected with the store it carried only a $1,500 stock, and with that as a nucleus he has developed a large department store, the largest of its kind in that section of the state, and some of his customers live thirty miles away. The general trade territory is almost as large as an average county. Mr. Achenbach is sole owner of the business and deserves much credit for what he has achieved as a merchant.

Mr. Achenbach is a republican in politics, is a member of the Christian Church and is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Modern Woodmen of America. In 1910 he built himself a modern home. He married at Taylorville, Illinois, in November, 1904, Miss Nellie Aymer. Her father, Thomas Aymer, was born in England in 1847 and came to America and located in Christian County, Illinois, at the age of twenty-one. At one time he was in the livery business but later was a farmer. He died in Christian County in 1905. He was a very active member of the Christian Church and in politics a republican. Thomas Aymer married Mary Jane Beckinham, who was born in England in 1850 and died in Christian County, Illionis,[sic] in 1895. Mrs. Achenbach was well educated in the country schools of her native county, also attended high school at Taylorville, and is a very cultured woman with many community interests. She is active in the Christian Church, has taught in the Sunday school, and is a member of the Rebekahs and the Royal Neighbors. Mr. and Mrs. Achenbach have two children: Aymer, born January 23, 1908, and Donald, born August 31, 1916.

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