William Kessler
William Kessler or Kesler, as it is sometimes spelled was born at Covington, Kentucky, May 6, 1824, he moved with his family to Indiana in 1829. His parents are unknown. Most of his early youth was spent at Indiana, when the Mexican War broke out he enlisted into the Company D., 1st Indiana Volunteers as a Sergeant.

When the Mexican War was over he traveled into San Gabriel, California, and then he ventured on to Butte County, which was established in 1850, and is one of the original twenty-seven counties of California. At Butte County he engaged in mining but he didn't turn out to be a successful miner in that county. In 1854, Kessler moved on, he moved to Shasta County arriving at Shasta City. Shasta County was another county established in 1850.

The California pioneer went into mining, and it was here where Kessler earned his fortune. In 1857 Kessler decided to give up mining and try his entrepreneurial skills. He moved to Whiskeytown, and owned and operated a general merchandise store at that location. He was their merchant for many years, Whiskeytown is located Northwest of Redding and is now located under the waters of Whiskeytown Lake, which was formed in the 1960s.

William Kessler by political standards was a Republican. By the time of his death he married three times and left several children, one of them was John Kessler, who was a well known business man of Shasta County. William was a brother-in-law of John Kimble, Thomas B. and John E. Reynolds, all pioneers of this county.

Kessler died in Sacramento, California on March 26, 1889, due to severe Asthma attacks. He was taken to Sacramento to receive medical attention that couldn't be offered in Shasta County. It is said he was buried in the Whiskeytown Cemetery. Kessler was an important man in early Whiskeytown history.

Contributed by Jeremy M. Tuggle
Resource: The Shasta Courier, Saturday, March 30, 1889.
The Weekly Shasta Courier, Saturday, March 30, 1889. Obituaries of William Kessler.

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