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"A Pedigree Partly Indian, Partly Batavian"


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Clarence J. Van Tassel

Clarence J. Van Tassel, civil engineer, is having an important part in the road work which is giving to Trempealeau County its justly-famed system of public highways. The new roads over some of the most difficult ridges in the county owe their location and grades to his skill, and his efficiency is highly praised throughout the state, being in constant demand over a wide territory. His work in locating the route of the new Ettrick & Northern Railroad has permanently established his record among the successful engineers of the state.

Mr. Van Tassel is a native of this county, having been born in Hale Township, July 5, 1879, son of James and Clara (Wegner) Van Tassel. James Van Tassel was born in Kenosha, Wis., came to Trempealeau
County with his parents in 1863, married Clara Wegner, and devoted the remainder of his life to agricultural pursuits, dying in 1898, since which time his wife had made her home in a comfortable residence in Whitehall.

Clarence J. Van Tassel was reared to farm pursuits and received a solid foundation for an education which he has since supplemented by wide reading and close observation. For several years he was a teacher, after which he was a successful photographer. But he was a man of resource and ambition, and determining to become a professional man he took up the study of civil engineering at home, and found it not only to be an occupation which he found congenial, but one for which he had great natural aptitude. He devoted a part of his time to this profession for several years, and in 1912 adopted it as his life work. For several terms he has been county surveyor. A popular genial man of many friends, Mr. Van Tassel has allied himself with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, in the local lodge of which he has passed through all the chairs.

Mr. Van Tassel was married Nov. 1, 1899, to Anna Stanley of Onalaska, Wis., daughter of Lyman and Diana Stanley, a former school teacher, and a gracious lady of many accomplishments. Their pleasant and hospitable home is blessed with the presence of four children: Thurman, Howard, Gerald and Olive. The family has a wide circle of friends and is highly regarded and respected.

Source: "History of Trempealeau County Wisconsin, 1917," pages 799-800.



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