Back Row: Steve Choisser, Ewing Choisser, and Emma Choisser
Front Row: Fern Gemmill, Carl Choisser, and Flodene Hadley
This photo was taken in 1937.
Historical information on Ewing and Carl follows:
Benton Evening NewsMonday, March 8, 1948
Ewing Choisser Dies Following Long Illness
Well Known Citizen Passes Away Saturday Evening; Funeral Today
A long and busy life came to an abrupt end at 7:20 Saturday evening, when Ewing E. Choisser passed away at his home, 505 North Main Street.
Although Mr. Choisser had been in declining health for several months as a result of a heart ailment, it was not surmised that the end was so near until a few minutes before his passing, when he was stricken with an acute attack, and died shortly after medical aid had been summoned.
Ewing Choisser was perhaps as well known as any man in Benton, having lived in the county for more than forty years, and having led a very active life, dealing in real estate and livestock.
He was the last surviving child of Voltaire and Martha Fisher Choisser, pioneer residents of Raleigh, where he was born on July 3, 1864.
Note: Family historians believe that Ewing Choisser was born in 1874.
In early life he was married to Miss Emma Parrish, who survives, together with three children, Mrs. Fern Gemmill, of Morristown, New Jersey; Steve Choisser, Managing Editor of the Benton Evening News; Mrs. Flodine Hadley, of Collinsville, and four grandchildren, Jean Ann Gemmill, James Choisser, Editor of the Benton Evening News, Joan Choisser and Lucia Hadley.
Funeral services were conducted at the Choisser home, this afternoon at 2:30, with Rev. C. E. Weber, pastor of the Christian Church, officiating, followed by burial in the Masonic and Odd Fellows Cemetery, under direction of the Mitchell Funeral Home."
Thanks to Carol Lee Yarbrough for this article.
History of IllinoisPublished 1927, p. 173
Carl Choisser joined the colors shortly after his admission to the bar, and since the war has practiced in Franklin County and is one of the able and successful lawyers of Benton. He is also a member of the Illinois Legislature.
Note: In the next paragraph, family historians take issue with the first sentence, that the name Voltaire was handed down among these men's ancestors, and that Ewing was born in 1875.
Mr. Choisser is a descendant of Voltaire Choisser, who came from Montreal, Canada, with his family of eleven sons and one daughter and settled in southern Illinois, near Cairo, more than a century ago. This is one of the oldest and most influential families of southern Illinois. The name Voltaire has been handed down from one generation to another. The grandfather of the Benton attorney also bore the name Voltaire and owned and operated a large farm at Raleigh in Saline County. On this farm was born Ewing Choisser in 1875. Ewing Choisser has been a resident of Benton since 1896, and is now connected with the state government in carrying out the hard road building program. He married Emma Parrish, member of a prominent family of that name in Johnson County.
Carl Choisser was born at Ozark in Johnson County, July 10, 1895. He was reared at Benton, graduated from high school there in 1913, and in 1917 took his law degree at the University of Illinois. In the fall of that year he was admitted to the bar and in December, 1917, joined the colors, having enlisted in the air service. He had his ground training at Champaign and a few months later was transferred To Chanute Field, and from there was one of the men selected to attend the flying school of Cornell University in New York. He remained there until after the armistice, receiving his honorable discharge November 25, 1918.
Mr. Choisser then located at Benton and opened his law office. He has a general practice, much of it corporation work, and is also city attorney for Zeigler and North City. He was elected a member of the Legislature in 1922, and was reelected in 1924 and also in 1926.
Mr. Choisser, who is unmarried, is a thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason, member of the Mystic Shrine at St. Louis, the Knights of Pythias, B. P. O. Elks, American Legion and belongs to the Baptist Church.
Thanks to Carol Lee Yarbrough for this article.
Benton Evening NewsSeptember 25, 1939
Carl Choisser Shot
William Carl Choisser, 46, attorney and president of the Benton Evening News lies in a critical condition in the Moore Hospital in Benton of wounds received this morning after being shot by Dr. (George W.) Gore. The shooting was witnessed by a dozen or more persons who said Dr. Gore had been standing on the square in front of the Brown Supply Company, evidently waiting for some one. Dr. Gore was locked up on the lower floor of the jail while his son, George W. Gore (Jr.) and George’s wife Katherine, were locked up on the second floor. Choisser was shot in the back three times. It is believed the shooting resulted in a disagreement between Dr. Gore and Choisser over the defense plans for young Gore who is scheduled to go on trial here October 16th on a charge of slaying his step-mother, Mrs. Nancy Gore. Choisser, a cousin of young Gore, was retained as his counsel.
(The following day's paper reported that Choisser died last evening, plus the following: He was born at Ozark, Jackson County, Illinois on July 10, 1895, son of E.E. and Emma Choisser. He was married to Miss Mural Wilson on June 26, 1933. They had no children. Burial will take place at the Masonic and Oddfellows Cemetery.)
Thanks to Sheila Cadwalader for these articles.
[ Choisser Family Tree ]