CHARLES CZECH. Prominent among the industries of Buchanan County are its milling enterprises and the men who have worked in that line have contributed effectively to the advancement of their communities. Mr. Czech, who is the proprietor of the Standard Roller Mills, is successfully conducting a flourishing business in Marion Township and has established a reputation for progressive methods and reliable dealings.
Fred Czech, the father of our subject, lived and died in West prussia, Germany, where also the mother, Mrs. Agnes (Artizewski) Czech, departed this life. They reared a family of seven children, three of whom are deceased and of whom our subject is the only member making his home in America. The latter was born March 18, 1844, in West Prussia, Germany, where he received an excellent education, being a graduate from the high school. He learned the trade of miller from his father and remained under the parental roof until reaching his majority.
In 1869 young Czech determined to try his fortunes in the land across the sea and stepping on American shores a few months later made his way directly to Chicago, where he remained only a short time. Thence he went to Colorado, later to Kansas and in 1872 we find him in St. Joseph, this state. Engaging to work for Haneb Brothers, our subject remained in their employ until 1877, when he launched out in business for himself, buying his present mill property which was then known as the Campbell Mills. This he greatly improved, fitted out with modern machinery and by the intelligent manner in which he conducts his affairs has become one of the foremost millers in the state. In 1888 he again remodeled his building, putting in a roller process, and two years later fitted the establishment out with steam, thus having both steam and water power. Mr. Czech gives constant employment to fifteen men and turns out one hundred barrels of flour per day. His finest brand of flower is the "Lilly," though he also manufactures the "Rising Sun" (which has a large sale), besides all kinds of pure rye flower, graham, corn meal, etc. He has no difficulty in finding a market for his superior grades of bread stuffs, the city of St. Joseph being able to dispose of nearly all he can manufacture. In addition to carrying on his milling plant, Mr. Czech owns four hundred acres, nearly all of which is under the best methods of cultivation. Besides the fine varieties of grain raised on his place, he gives considerable attention to the breeding of Poland China hogs and Short Horn cattle, having on his estate some of the finest of these animals to be found in the county. He is also interested in breeding fine draft and trotting horses, having in his stables the offspring of "Looker Lad," "Colonel West," "Forward" and "Arabesque," whose record as trotters is hard to beat.
The lady whom Mr. Czech married, in 1875, was Miss Sarah Fieschter. She was born in Andrew County, this state, and died in 1884, leaving three children -- John, Agnes and Flora. In 1891 Mr. Czech was again married, the lady of his choice being Miss Lucy, daughter of Judge Jacob Boyer, of this county, who took up his abode in Marion Township as early as 1837. Mrs. Czech was born in this county in 1850.
Judge Jacob Boyer, the father of Mrs. Czech, is the son of Peter Boyer, a native of Pennsylvania, where also his mother, Mrs. Elizabeth (Binkley) Boyer, had her birth. The couple came to Ohio in 1817 and made their home in Stark County until 1837, the date of their advent into Buchanan County. They made location on a wild tract of land, which they developed and cultivated, and where they resided until their decease. Mr. and Mrs. Boyer reared a family of nine children, seven of whom are still living. Judge Jacob was born Christmas Day, 1813, in Pennsylvania. He received a good common-school education in the Buckeye State and accompanied his parents on their removal to this county. When starting out in life for himself he entered a claim from the Government and was married, in 1841, to Miss Hannah Kessler, the daughter of Sebastian and Calista (Kurtz) Kessler, natives of Wurtemberg, Germany.
Mrs. Boyer was born May 16, 1822, in Wurtemberg, Germany, and after her marriage located with her husband upon their farm in this county, where they have six hundred and forty acres of excellent land. Mr. Boyer is engaged exclusively in mixed farming and is now one of the well to do agriculturists of the county. In 1870 he erected a comfortable residence on his estate at a cost of $2,000.
Of the nine children born to Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Boyer six are living, namely: William H., Lucy Ann (wife of our subject), Isaac, James P., Elizabeth and Peter. Mr. Boyer is a member of the Lutheran Church, while his good wife is identified with the Catholics. In politics he is a prominent Republican, and in 1866 was elected County Judge, serving six years. He served as a member of the School Board for many years, and at the present time has the honor of being the oldest living settler in this township, being in his eightieth year.
Socially, Mr. Czech, our subject, is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in St. Joseph, in which society he has filled all the Chairs. He is also connected with the Encampment, in which body he has been High Priest. He takes a moderate interest in politics, always, however, casting his vote for the man who he things will best fill the office.
Prior to coming to America Mr. Czech entered the German Army, becoming a member of the First East Prussian Regiment, of which he was made Sergeant. In 1863 he was in active service along the border during the Poland Russian troubles. He was later ordered back to take part against Denmark, but the regiment was excused on account of distemper, which was prevalent among their horses. In 1866 he served in the Prussian Army against Austria, during which time he engaged in the following battles: Trautnau, Koeniggratz and Tobishau. After a service of three years and six months he received his honorable discharge and soon after came to America. At the present time he is a member of the German Landwehr Verein at St. Joseph. Mr. Czech is considered a man of enterprise and ability, and has aquired a handsom competence as the result of years of industry. He is widely and favorably known in the community where he has spent so many years of his life and with whose interests he has been so closely associated.
Source: Chapman Bros., editor, Portrait and Biographical Record of Buchanan and Clinton Counties, Missouri, pp. 364-366.