LENKER, WILLIAM E., retired merchant, was born in Mifflin township, Dauphin county, Pa., March 9, 1833, and is a son of William and Eve Catherine (Feidt) Lenker. Philip Lenker, his grandfather, was twice married. His second marriage was with Ann Margaret Weaver; their children were: Jacob, Philip, William, John, David, Jonas, Susanna, Adam, and Sarah. William Lenker, father of William E., was born February 6, 1805, and died March 29, 1869. His wife, Eve Catherine Feidt, was born December 24, 1805, and died May 24, 1887. Four of their six children are deceased: Joel, born December 17, 1839, died August 27, 1844; Aaron, born September 16, 1843, died October 13, 1846; Lavinia, born August 28, 1840, died February 25, 1892, wife of Thomas Matter; Susan, born May 16, 1831, wife of Joel Koppenhaver, who died, and she married Jacob Emerick; she died December 27, 1894. the living children of Mr. and Mrs. William Lenker are: William E. and Daniel, who was born October 11, 1828, and resides at Aaronsburg, Pa.
William E. Lenker was educated in the district schools of Mifflin township, which he attended during part of each year until he was fourteen. At that age he went with his parents to Upper Paxton township, where he continued to attend the common schools until 1852. During his years at school he was also working on the farm, and assisting his parents to the best of his power in every busy season. On November 2, 1852, he entered Mt. Pleasant College, Westmoreland county, Pa., and pursued the regular course of studies there for two terms, after which he attended the Berrysburg Seminary for two terms. In 1855 he studied at the State Normal School, Millersville, Lancaster county, during the spring term; then in the summer of the same year he helped his father as usual with the harvest work. After a term at the New Berlin Academy in Union county, he taught a winter school at home, resuming farm work with his father in the spring. The following winter he taught school in Upper Paxton township, working again for his father in the summer, and receiving wages; the next winter he taught again in Upper Paxton township. In 1858 Mr. Lenker rented his fatherís farm on shares, and continued this arrangement for nine successive years, teaching every winter either in Mifflin or Upper Paxton township. During that time he received a teacherís professional certificate from County Superintendent Ingram.
On February 12, 1866, Mr. Lenker and Samuel Lehman made arrangements for the purchase of the Lykens Valley store, and on October 1, 1866, they took possession and began business under the firm name of Lenker & Lehman. Mr. Lenker remained on the home farm until the next spring, when he occupied his present homestead. The firm conducted the business for five years. In 1871 Mr. Lenker bought the interest of his partner and continued business by himself until March, 1888. He then retired, leaving as successor his son, Francis Winfield Lenker, who has since conducted the business. Mr. Lenker has kept pace with the march of improvement, and has done his share in building up the place. In 1872 he built the fine dwelling in which his son now lives. In 1892 he remodeled his own residence, improving, enlarging, and adorning it, and making it one of the most desirable homes in the region.
On October 1, 1857, William B. Lenker was married to Amanda, daughter of Jonas and Elizabeth Diebler, born October 16, 1837. Mrs. Dieblerís maiden name was the same as that of her husband, although they were not at all related. Mr. and Mrs. Lenker have two children: Francis Winfield, born April 12, 1861, married Annie Miller, has one son, Mark Homer; and Minnie Savilla, wife of Benton P. Negley, has two children, Helen Amanda and William Isaac. Mrs. Lenker died December 21, 1886. She was faithful in all her round of duties, and gentle and loving in her ways. She made a profession of religion in connection with the United Brethren church, and honored this profession by a godly walk and conversation. She was one of a family of seven children, of whom she was the eldest; the others were Mary, Lizzie, John H., Sarah Jane, Catherine, and Jonas Edward. Mr. Lenker was married, the second time, November 7, 1891, to Mary M., widow of Cornelius Hoy, and daughter of the Rev. Henry E. Hackman, Elizabethville, Dauphin county, Pa.
Mr. Hackmanís family consisted of eleven children: Anne, wife of Michael Hicker; Mary, Mrs. Lenker; Alice, wife of Onesimus Kreider; Edward, married Henrietta Stahl; Clara; Horace, married Mollie Shoffstall; Wilson, married Sallie Light; Ida, wife of Frank Bender; Lizzie, deceased; Virginia, wife of Samuel M. Glenigon, and Laura, wife of Henry Stein.
Mr. Lenkerís political preferences are with the Republican party. He has served the township in various offices. He was elected justice of the peace in 1876, served two years, and then resigned; re-elected in 1892, he has continued in office ever since. Under President Johnsonís administration, in 1867, he was appointed postmaster of Killinger, Pa., and held the office until 1885. Mr. Lenker and his family are members of the United Brethren church.
Pages 1077 & 1074
Transcribed by Judy Warner Bookwalter, for the Dauphin County,
Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project Ė http://maley.net/transcription