WILLIAM F. WAGNER, one of the proprietors of the Sullivan Monument Company, was born August 4, 1864, in Terre Haute, Indiana, a son of William and Catherine (Emerick) Wagner. William Wagner was a native of Wittenburg, Germany, born August 13, 1826. and died May 29, 1900, at Clinton, Indiana, his home, however, being in Terre Haute. The mother was born in Trenton, New Jersey, in 1837, on the twentieth day of November, and she died March 20, 1906, in Los Angeles, California. Her husband located in Terre Haute in October, 1852, when yet a single man, and they were married there in January, 1863. He had learned the stone-cutter's trade in Germany, and also worked some at the stone monument industry. After going to Terre Haute, he built the State Normal College buildings at that place, as well as the Marble Block on Wabash avenue, the Old Opera house, the Episcopal church and the Presbyterian church. The stone used in the construction of the two last named buildings was quarried at Pottsville, Indiana, and floated down on rafts. He also built a great many store buildings at Paris, Illinois, and Brazil and Vincennes. Indiana. He engaged in the monument business at Terre Haute in 1854, on Third street, under the firm name of Wagner, Crossley & Webber, which firm continued for about ten years. Mr. Wagner then engaged in the building stone business, in which he remained until 1875, when he formed a partnership with F. B. Palmer, under the firm name of Palmer & Wagner, which business relation existed for seven years, when the name of the firm was changed to Wagner & Ripley. They continued as a firm for five years, when the business was conducted as Wagner & Son, and so operated until the father's death.

Politically, Mr. Wagner was a supporter of the Democratic party. He belonged to the Odd Fellows and Ancient Order of United Workmen lodges. His wife was a member of the Roman Catholic ehureh and was of German descent. Eleven children were born of this union, four of whom died in infancy, and the others were: William F. and George W. (twins), George W. being now deceased; Lewis F., residing at Newman, Illinois; Edward, deceased; Catherine, deceased; Josephine, residing at Los Angeles, California; Mamie B., of Los Angeles, wife of Arthur W. Harris, has three daughters.

William F. Wagner was reared in the city of Terre Haute, receiving his education at the public schools and being graduated from the Old Garvin Commercial College in 1882. Believing that every man was more independent by having perfect knowledge of some one of the trades, he mastered that of stone-cutter, under his father's directions, working with him until his death, in 1900, since which time Mr. Wagner was engaged at Clay City, Clay county, Indiana, up to 1905 and in Sullivan since then. During 1905 he entered into a partnership with M. E. Drake, under the firm name of Drake & Wagner, but now styled the Sullivan Monument Company, which concern is doing an extensive and profitable business in the artistic production of substantial monuments and kindred marble and stone work.

In his political views, Mr. Wagner is a firm believer in the general principles laid down in the platforms of the Democratic party. In his fraternal affiliations, he belongs to the Knights of Pythias, Modern Woodmen of America and the Tribe of Ben Hur of Sullivan. He was united in marriage, March 6, 1884, to Nora E. Bressler, a native of Clay county, Indiana. She was reared on a farm, and received her education at the common schools, remaining at home with her people until the date of her marriage. She is the daughter of Daniel H. and Matilda (Zenor) Bressler. The father was born in Pennsylvania, and his father conducted one of the old-time stage route hotels or taverns in that state. Mrs. Wagner's mother was born in Clay county, Indiana, and both parents are now deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Wagner are the parents of one daughter-Jessie May, born December 19, 1886. In their religious convictions, both Mr. and Mrs. Wagner are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.