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326 BIOGRAPHICAL AND PORTRAIT CYCLOPEDIA

mercantile business. His establishment is a large one, and he is active and always ready to accommodate his patrons. He keeps a large stock of goods, especially selected for his section, and does a good business.
    In 1866 Mr. Gessler married Caroline Lurtz, a daughter of Mr. Lurtz, of Black Creek, Luzerne county. To their union have been born six children, three sons and three daughters; John, a baker and confectioner of Connellsville, Fayette county; Charles, William, Sarah, wife of Albert McClain, of Pittsburg; Katie, married Joseph Hank, of Hastings, and Maggie, wedded Elmer Nagle, and resides at Hastings.
    In politics Mr. Gessler has always acted with the Democratic party.
    He is a prominent and active member of the Masonic fraternity, holding membership in Indiana Lodge, No. 313, Free and Accepted Masons, and William Penn Chapter, No. 305, Royal Arch Masons, both of Indiana, this State. Mr. Gessler has been successful in business, and is respected by all who know him for his many sterling qualities of character.
    His family is one among the old and respectable families of Hart, Wurtemburg, where his father, Captain Charles Frederick Gessler, was a wealthy clothing manufacturer at one time. He raised, equipped, and commanded a Revolutionary company in the uprising of 1848 in Germany, and at its suppression escaped into Switzerland, where his sons, Everhart and C.H., sent him money six years later to come to America. After the death of King William I., his successor, William II., pardoned all political exiles, and Captain Gessler returned to Horst, where he died in 1876. His immense property, which had been confiscated in 1848, was kept by his govern-
ment. He was a man of business ability and great influence before the Rebellion of 1848.
    Captain Gessler was twice married, and had twenty children. He married for his first wife Caroline Shoemaker. By this marriage he had two children: Charles H., a baker and confectioner of Indiana, this State, and Everhart, whose name appears at the head of this sketch.


P. McGOUGH, the oldest permanent resident and business man of Portage, is an active Democratic leader, and has served as justice of the peace continuously since 1857, excepting four years when acting as postmaster. He is a son of Colonel John and Sarah (Glass) McGough, and was born two miles west of Cresson, in Cambria county, Pennsylvania, January 1, 1832. He attended the early common schools a short time, but is principally self-educated, and remained on the farm until he was twenty-five years of age. He was next engaged in getting out and sawing lumber on a small scale for a few years, and then removed to Portage, where he built and opened the first hotel of that place. He also started the first butcher shop and grocery store, but in a short time disposed of both grocery and hotel and engaged in his present livery business, which is both extensive and profitable.
    Mr. Mcgough has been twice married. In 1862 he wedded Mary McColgan, who died Aug. 6, 1865, aged thirty-two years, leaving three children; Sarah, Mary, wife of D.W. Martin; and E. Josephine, who married F.J. Saxton. Four years after his first wife's death, Mr. McGough, on July 7, 1869, married Rose Donahoe, daughter of Patrick Donahoe, and by his second marriage has twelve children: Clara, wife of John Smith; Clement, running


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Last Updated: 30 Mar 2008
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Lynne Canterbury and Diann Olsen