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William L. Heineken, a prosperous and influential farmer of Atchison county, resides upon a well improved homestead situated on section 22, Benton township. He is a native of Louisiana, his birth having occurred October 10, 1847. His family name was originally spelled Langeheineken, but on account of the difficulty of writing and pronouncing such a long name the first syllable was dropped.

The family of which he is a sterling representative is an old and honored one in Germany, his grandfather, a native of Hamburg, being reared and educated in that country. For a wife he chose a lady of Portuguese birth, whose family were wealthy and influential, but whose estates were confiscated by the crown because of their too openly sympathizing with the revolutionary party during the Carlos war. Our subject's father, Augustus Heineken, was born in Hamburg, and when he arrived at the proper age entered the military service of his fatherland, serving for three years. Later he embarked in merchandising, in which pursuit he met with success. He married Carolina Schrader, of a prominent Brunswick (Germany) family. In 1846 the young couple came to America, locating at first in Baltimore, and subsequently settling in New Orleans. Of their three chihiren Theodore, deceased, left a widow and two daughters, and Helena, deceased, became the wife of William Sherrill. The father died when in his sixty-fifth year and the mother, who was a member of the Catholic church, died when in her sixty-fourth year.

William L. Heineken came to Kansas in 1857, when he was a lad of ten years, and for one year worked on a farm in Atchison county and for four years worked on a farm in Doniphan county, working for his father. He attended district schools during this tune and then took a course in Bush's Commercial College at Leavenworth, Kansas. He was engaged in farming in Wyandotte county, Kansas, up to 1872, when he went to Cowley county, Kansas, and engaged in the hotel business at Winfield for one year. Relinquishing the hotel he then farmed in Cowley county till the spring of 1884, when he purchased his present homestead. There are one hundred and sixty acres in the place and the improvements include a commodious house, barns, fences, windmill and other necessary attributes of a desirable modern country home. The farm is near Nortonville and only five miles from Effingham.

In 1872 Mr. Heineken married Mary Helm, in Wyandotte county, Kansas. She is a daughter of Thomas and Sarah Helm, and was born in Pennsylvania. Ten children, seven of the number sons, have blessed the union of our subject and wife, namely: Edward, a student at the Effingham high school; Carrie, wife of A. Matthews; Nora, Chester, Elsie, Theodore, Arthur, Walter, Harry and Ernest.

Mr. Heineken is a self-made man, owing to his own indefatigable efforts the competence which he now enjoys. He is a man of upright principles and one of his highest ambitions is to provide all of his children with a good, practical education. For twenty-two years he has officiated as a school director, manifesting the great interest which he takes in the matter of proper educational facilities for the young. Socially he is identified with the Knights and Ladies of Security. In politics he is a Populist, loyally upholding the policy of the party which he believes to be the best for the common good.