MEISTER, deceased, was born May 21, 1822, in
Harrisburg, Pa., son
of Frederick and Catharine (Fager) Kelker.
He was educated in the schools of Harrisburg and spent one year in the
preparatory department of Marshall College, after which he entered the dry goods
store of John C. Bucher & Co., of Harrisburg, to learn the mercantile
business. In May, 1846, he embarked in the hardware business with his two
brothers Rudolph F. and Henry A. Kelker, under the firm name of Kelker &
Bros., and remained actively engaged in the business until his death, March 30,
1880. The business was done from May 1846, to May, 1851, under the firm name of
Kelker & Bros., and from May, 1851, to April, 1878, as Immanuel M. &
Henry A. Kelker, under the firm name of Kelker & Bro. At the latter date George B. and Frederick, sons of Immanuel
Kelker, were associated in the business under the firm name of Kelker &
Mr. Kelker was a confirmed member of the Reformed Salem church, of
Harrisburg. He entered the
Sunday-school in early childhood and continued through life a very active and
liberal supporter in the cause. He
taught for many years in the Sunday-school of the Salem church and assisted by
personal labor and most liberal donations in the establishment of the Mission
Sunday-school, from which sprang the Second Reformed church, of Harrisburg. In his own church he served as deacon for many years, and
from the time of the organization of the Second church, to which he subscribed
liberally, his efforts were mainly for its welfare, having acted as
superintendent of one department of the Sunday-school.
Mr. Kelker was a firm and consistent advocate of temperance reform.
He was a director of the Harrisburg National Bank for many years.
His marriage occurred September 21, 1847, with Mary Ann Jefferson,
daughter of George Beatty and Sarah Smith
(Shrom) Beatty, of Harrisburg. Their
children are: Catharine, born
October 24, 1849; George B., born January 9, 1852, married October 3, 1878, to
Louisa, daughter of Daniel and Catharine Dicker; Frederick, born July 28, 1858,
married May 11, 1882, to Annie Matilda, daughter of Thomas D. and Sarah
(Zimmerman) Mahan, and has two children: Saran
V. and Thomas M.