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Anton Andrew Ackerman. The business opportunities that some men never see, attract others to whom they seem open pathways to success. Not every farmer boy, however, of seventeen years had the common sense attitude combined with the industrious habits that have made Anton Andrew Ackerman, now a substantial business man of Neosho County, a reliable, satisfactory, efficient worker in other industrial lines before he had more than reached manhood. Mr. Ackerman had worked hard and to some purpose, otherwise he would not have his present high business standing as one of the leading contractors and drillers in the Mid-continent oil and gas fields, not to mention a prosperous business enterprise carried on at Chanute.
Anton Andrew Ackerman was born November 23, 1876, at Coatsburg, Adams County, Illinois. His parents were Mitchell and Louisa (Felsman) Ackerman, and his grandfather was also Mitchell Ackerman. All were born in Germany and in that country the grandfather was a wagonmaker, but after coming to America he lived retired from business and died in Illinois. Mitchell Ackerman, father of Anton, was born in 1818 and came to the United States in early manhood. He settled first as a farmer near Coatsburg, Adams County, Illinois. In 1886 he moved to Aurora, Lawrence County, Missouri, and there engaged in farming. He died at Aurora in 1906.
Mitchell Ackerman was married to Louisa Felsman, who was born in Germany in 1837 and still resided at Aurora, Missouri. They had the following children: Henry, who is a farmer residing near Aurora, Missouri; William, who is a machinist, resided at Aurora; Anton Andrew; Philip, who is in partnership with his brother Anton at Chanute; Frank, who is a stationary engineer, resided at Aurora; Rudolph, whose home is in the State of Washington, is connected with a traveling amusement company; Joseph, who operates a stationary engine at Aurora; Gertrude, who is the wife of a railroad employe, resided at Coatsburg, Illinois; and Fannie, who is the wife of a farmer in Lawrence County, Missouri.
Anton A. Ackerman obtained his education in the public schools of Lawrence County, and assisted his father on the home farm until he was seventeen years of age. He had a natural turn toward mechanics and when he found the opportunity to take charge of a stationary engine, he embraced it and for eight years worked through Missouri as a stationary engineer and in this way was led into working in the oil fields, and after coming to Chanute, in 1908, he engaged in the oil drilling and contracting business for himself. He is widely known in this business and had drilled hundreds of wells in Kansas and Oklahoma and in some sections was the pioneer driller. As a business man he had proved honest, alert and resourceful and great confidence is felt in his judgment in this line of industry because of his success during his years of experience.
In addition to his contracting business, Mr. Ackerman, in association with his brother, Philip, operates the leading garage at Chanute, doing a large business. The garage is situated at Nos. 14-16 North Highland Avenue, with an enclosed floor space of 50 by 130 feet. Mr. Ackerman established his garage in 1911.
At Springfield, Missouri, Mr. Ackerman was married in 1901 to Miss Ella Snoddy, who died at Chanute in 1905, the mother of two children, Pauline and Anna, the latter of whom died at the age of two months. The former was born August 30, 1902, and is a promising student already in the high school. On July 4, 1913, at Chanute, Mr. Ackerman was married a second time, to Mrs. Edith Scott. Mrs. Ackerman died in November of the same year.
In politics Mr. Ackerman had always been a democrat and believes in the wisdom of the principles of that party but his aspirations have never led him to desire public life for himself, although men with his experience of men and conditions might make exceedingly practical and useful officials. He belongs to the Chanute Commercial Club, and fraternally is identified with Chanute Lodge No. 806, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks; Hector Lodge No. 64, Odd Fellows, at Chanute; and Chanute Camp No. 852 Modern Woodmen of America. Having made his own way in the world, Mr. Ackerman is strong and self reliant and impresses even a stranger as one who would be thoroughly dependable under every condition in business life.