Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens
PETER KLINGENSMITH. A properly managed farmers' organization can be used to secure the farmers the benefits that "big business" secures from doing things on a big scale. Many have the idea that nothing can be done in this line unless there is a powerful organization, but this is a mistake--the successful cooperative enterprises have come from small beginnings. One of the progressive farmers of Center township, Greene county, who is always ready to adopt the advanced methods of farming, is Peter Klingensmith.
He was born in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, February 15, 1844. He is a son of Gasper and Barbara (Bush) Klingensmith, and a grandson of Andrew and Susanna Klingensmith. Ancestors on both sides of the house originated in Bavaria, Germany. Andrew Klingensmith's father emigrated from that country to America in an early day and here spent the rest of his life, dying in Pennsylvania on a farm. Several generations of the family have been farmers. Andrew Klingensmith was a member of the old Lutheran church. His family consisted of eleven children, eight boys and three girls, all now deceased. Gaspar Klingensmith was born in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, December 24, 1820. He was a shoemaker by trade. Upon leaving Pennsylvania he located in Trumbull county, Ohio, where he followed his trade for a short time. Leaving that locality in 1865, he located in Daviess county, Indiana, where he engaged in farming, and there his death occurred November 5, 1885. His wife had preceded him to the grave January 19, 1865. Before moving to Ohio they were members of the old Lutheran church, but at that time they joined the United Brethren church. Politically, he was a Republican.
Peter Bush, father of Mrs. Klingensmith, devoted his life to farming. He was twice married; twelve children were born by his first wife and four by his second marriage. He was a Democrat and a member of the Lutheran church.
Peter Klingensmith, our subject, was five years old when his parents removed with him to Ohio. There he grew up and attended the public schools, and when a young man learned the carpenter's trade. From Ohio he moved to Daviess county, Indiana, and there, on June 17, 1868, he married Sarah Rodarmel, a daughter of Friend Rodarmel, a native of Indiana, and a son of Joseph Rodarmel, a native of Pennsylvania, but whose father was a native of Germany, from which country he emigrated to the United States in an early day and settled in the old Keystone state. Friend Rodarmel was the father of twelve children, four of whom died in infancy, three of them still living, namely: William lives in Knox county, Indiana, where he is engaged in farming; Sarah, wife of our subject, and Marcellus, a farmer of Knox county, Indiana. Politically, Friend Rodarmel was a Republican, and he was road commissioner for some time in his community. He belonged to the Cumberland Presbyterian church. His death occurred April 29, 1870. His wife survived him twenty-five years, dying December 23, 1905, at an advanced age.
Seven children have been born to our subject and wife, namely: Charles, a carpenter at Bristow, Oklahoma, is married and has seven children. He is a Modern Woodman. Gasper, the second son, who lives at Washington, Indiana, is a carpenter and contractor. He is noble grand of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and also belongs to the Improved Order of Red Men. He is married and has five children. Jesse is a carpenter by trade, lives in Greene county, and has a wife and five children. Mrs. Lucy Ginn is the wife of a Greene county farmer and they have three children. Anna Augusta died when three years of age. Edwin Ray is farming in Greene county, is married and has two children. Amanda is the wife of Clarence Kindrick, of Elwood, this county, and they have one child.
Peter Klingensmith left Indiana in 1888 and came to Cowley county, Kansas, where he resided until 1891, when he moved to Greene county, Missouri, locating on his present farm, buying fifty acres, Which he has placed under excellent improvements and one on which he has made a comfortable living. He has done a great deal of the work in building and keeping repaired the famous Carthage road.
Politically, he is a Republican, religiously a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and fraternally a member of the Masonic blue lodge No. 449, of Bois D'Arc, but he first became a Mason in Indiana; he also belongs to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows at Elwood, to Encampment No. 42 in Springfield, and to Lodge No. 512 Rebekahs, in which he has held several offices. His wife is a member of the Ladies' Aid Society of the Center Grove Methodist church, there being thirty-two members in the society, and she is one of the most active.
Springfield-Greene County Library