Bonnie Harvey has shared this Biography of William Bost with our Fecht - Bost Family blog.
From Memorirs of Alleghany County, Pennsylvania
William Bost, a well known carpenter of Whitaker, where he has lived since 1892, is of German parentage. He is a son of Henry and Catherine (Renn) Bost. His father came to America about 1851, and located in Alleghany County where he resided until his death. For about twenty years, he followed the occupation of a coal miner and afterwards lived practically a retired life in the village of Whitaker, where he died in 1886 at the age of fifty seven.
Matthew Renn, his maternal grandfather, came to America in 1852, settled in Mifflin township and spend the remainder of his life there.
William Bost was born in Mifflin township, January 1, 1957. He is one of a family of seven children - all boys - viz:
He received a common-school education and began life as a miner, which occupation he followed for about three years, when he went to work as a heater in the Homestead Steel Works.
In 1892 he made another change in his occupation and since that time he has worked continuously at carpenter work, assisting in the erection of some of the finest buildings in the country. He owns a home in Whitaker and is looked upon as one of the substantial citizens of that thriving village.
On March 14, 2881, he was married to Miss Gertrude Rushe, a daughter of Nicholas and Mary Rushe of Mifflin Township. His wife's parents are both natives of Germany, through French extraction. They have nin children living"
Henry N. (Rusche)
John G. (Rusche)
Peter A. (Rusche)
Gertrude M. (Rusche)
William L. (Rusche)
M. Florence (Rusche)
J. Oliver (Rusche)
and an infant daughter, Roberta M. (Rusche)
Mr. Bost and his family are members of Saint Francis' Roman Catholic church of Homestead. He is a charter member of the Whitaker Tent, Number 425, Knights of Maccabees; the Carpenters' and Jointers' Union, and the Turnverein. (see note below)
In politics he is independent. Believing in the saying of the late President Hayes, that "He serves his party best who serves his country best."
He carefully weights every proposition touching the public weal and casts his vote on the side he conscientiously believes will secure the greatest good for the greatest number.
The Turnverin Movement:
The Turnverins in Pennsylvania came with German immigrants to America with families like the Bosts. The movement grew out of a 19th century liberal effort to unify the German states into one country. The unity of states in the American Republic made sense to them. The Trunverins combined German patriotism with a sense of preparedness: physically through gymnastics, and intellectually through talks on moral and economic themes. In some ways it was similar to the YMCA movement that came out of England.
David Kraft wrote on an ancestor website Genforum on June 1, 2002
"My grandfather was William Bost, the 19th century builder of Homestead, PA's Bost Building.
I'm told Bosts are from Alsace, France, which swung between the French and German borders depending on the latest victor in their wars.
A change in politics within Alsace could have resulted in great immigration to America."
David Kraft has family photos dating back to around 1870.
"My grandfather was John Kraft of Whitaker Pennsylvania. He married Gertrude Rusche Bost, also of Whitaker, and later lived in Homestead PA. John died in 1974; Gertrude predeceased him in 1964."