Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens
Lawrence County Pennsylvania 1897
[p. 169] widely known through Western Pennsylvania as the superintendent of the Bessemer Limestone Quarries, located at Bessemer, North Beaver township, Lawrence County, was born on the 14th day of February, 1851, near Hesse-Cassel, Germany. His father, Jean Pierre Booksing, was an expert smith by trade, and in his native land had acquired, even before his early death at the age of forty-six, no mean reputation as a skilful and reliable mechanic.
Henry Booksing spent his first years in the schools of his Fatherland; than these schools none are better on the face of the earth. At seventeen years of age, the lad, whose sole capital was a good head, a willing heart, and a ready hand, came to the United States. His first position was in the planing mills at Youngstown, Ohio. It took the young man but a short time to master the carpenter's trade, and to become a proficient worker in wood. Turning his attention to mechanics and engineering, he soon was familiar with the practical part of those sciences, so that on coming to Bessemer in 1887 he was qualified to take charge of the locomotive used in the quarries. He followed this line of work for nine years. Such was his faithfulness to duty, and to such good use had he employed his powers of observation, that in 1896 the company made him their superintendent. This position Mr. Booksing is now filling with credit to himself and to the entire satisfaction of the company, whose headquarters and main office are at Youngstown, Ohio. Mr. Booksing believes that what is worth doing at all is worth doing well. When you enter a pursuit, study its details from every standpoint, and learn all there is to learn about each one of them. Study your engine from the largest casting down to the smallest screw or bolt. Know your business in its every element, whether it be great or small. These principles have placed our subject in the position he now holds.
The Bessemer Quarries were first opened in 1887. Here is found a high grade of limestone, which is quarried and shipped to iron furnaces far and wide; its purity and evenness make it of the greatest value to the iron-master. Mr. Booksing has charge of a force of 150 men at these quarries, and for the housing of these men the company has erected a small settlement of fourteen double and twelve single tenements. An immense and powerful stone crusher, and every other sort of machinery that modern ingenuity can devise, are in use. Mr. Booksing is conducting one of the largest industries of its kind in the United States.
Our subject was married several years since to Miss Lizzie Myers, daughter of Michael Myers of Sodom, Ohio, and six children have blessed their union, of whom three are living at the present time. The names of the living children are: Willie, Lillie, and Cassie May. The dear ones, whom death claimed were: Freddie, Barbara, and Christina.
Henry Booksing comes from a notable ancestry. Far back in the history of the family, the name was spelled Boucsein. The family as the name indicates was of French extraction. When the persecutions of the Huguenots, the Protestants of France, were instituted by the Catholic hierarchy, and rebellion ensued, the forefathers of our subject were among the thousands who were forced to flee for their very lives. They found a refuge in Protestant Germany, where they were permitted to pursue their peaceful vocations, and worship their Creator as their consciences dictated.
Mr. Booksing is truly a self-made man. Being thoroughly acquainted with the conditions that surround the workingman, he is a fair and good master, and no complaint is made by those under him of unjust dealings with them. Perfectly familiar with his work, he makes a faithful and reliable officer for his superiors. As a citizen and as a man he is public-spirited, and high minded. The respect in which he is held shows the influence which he wields personally. He is a kind father, a good neighbor, and a stanch friend. Those who go to him for counsel find him possessed of keen judgment and a true knowledge of men and affairs. He is an eminent, worthy, and useful member of society in the locality which he has chosen for his life work.
Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens Lawrence County Pennsylvania
Biographical Publishing Company, Buffalo, N.Y., 1897
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Updated: 3 May 2001