There are few men in Wallowa County that are possessed of higher order of talent than the esteemed subject of this sketch, who has manifested in various places and capacities of his ability to handle the business affairs of life in a manner that brings success and stamps him as a man of sound judgment, keen foresight, executive force and good financial ability, while also commensurate with these qualities there have been shown fine moral virtues that stamp him the stanch, true upright citizen.
Mr. Knapper was born in Whiteside county Illinois, on April 9, 1853, the son of Gottlieb and Christiana Knapper, natives of Germany. The father came to America in 1842 and settled in Whiteside County Illinois and there he became one of the prominent men of the county, remaining in the same place until his death. He was one of the leading agriculturists of that county. There our subject received his education and technical training, being grounded in sound principles from a wise father. When Ludwig reached the years of majority he stepped into the arena of life’s conflicts for himself and he was soon installed in the position of manager of his father’s estates, continuing in the same for five years.
Following that period he went to Iowa in 1879 and two years being spent in farming in that state, he then turned toward the setting sun and sought a home in the west. Umatilla County was the place where he first stopped and: taken by its offers of resources, he set to work there for two years in farming, then in company with Ed Jennings, whose sketch appears in another portion of this work, he wrought there with excellent success, and then they sought out a place in Wallowa County and brought their flocks and accoutrements hither. Fourteen years Mr. Knapper and his brother-in-law wrought steadily on in the business and then dissolved partnership. Mr. Jennings took the farmland and our subject owned the flocks. Since that time Mr. Knapper has bought his present place the date of the purchase being March1, 1898 the estate consists of one thousand five hundred and twenty acres of good land and it lies five and one-half miles east from Joseph. The farm is well improved and is to be made one of the best in the entire county, and Mr. Knapper is still one of the leading sheep men of the county.
On Jan 2, 1880 Mr. Knapper married Miss Ellen, daughter of Robert and Sarah (Bradley) Jennings and sister of Ed Jennings. The wedding occurred in Adair county, Iowa and to then have been born the following children. Robert B; Elsie M; Addie M; Benjamin H. Mrs. Knapper was born on February 3 1862 in Astoria Illinois. Mr. Knapper is one of the prominent men of our county and is justly entitled to the prestige and encomiums of his fellows that he enjoys.