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Schowalter, Jacob Abraham (1879-1953)

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The Schowalter will is now under probate, with A. C. Detweiler, Halstead, and Wm P. Schowalter, Jetmore, serving as executors.
 
The Schowalter will is now under probate, with A. C. Detweiler, Halstead, and Wm P. Schowalter, Jetmore, serving as executors.
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''Mennonite Weekly Review'' obituary: 1954 Mar 4 p. 1
   
 
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Latest revision as of 16:11, 30 June 2020

Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Mar 12 p. 1

Birth date: 1879 Sep 25

text of obituary:

Prominent Farmer Called Away In Death

Contents

JAC. A. SCHOWALTER DIED IN BETHEL HOSPITAL TUESDAY AFTERNOON

Jac. A. Schowalter, 73, prominent farmer and community leader, died in the Bethel Deaconess Hospital at about 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, March 10, after a four weeks’ illness of heart ailment.

Funeral services will be held on Friday, with a brief service at the Kaufman funeral home in Halstead for relatives and close friends at 1:30 p.m. and the public service at 2:30 in the First Mennonite church of Newton. Having never been married, Mr. Schowalter leaves as his closest surviving relative a brother, Fred Schowalter and family of near Halstead. Living with him at the homestead southwest of Newton in recent years were Mr. and Mrs. Titus Jost, formerly of Hillsboro.

Born in Friedelsheim, Germany, Mr. Schowalter came to America in his early youth, taking up farming and engaging in various business undertakings, in which he proved outstandingly successful. He served one term in the Kansas state legislature as representative of Harvey county. Aside from his farming and business interests, he devoted much time to community work, relief and philanthropic enterprises. Together with other local men, he spent several weeks in Paraguay early last year and had planned a similar trip again this spring.

Burial is to be made in the Mennonite cemetery at Halstead.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Mar 19 p. 3

text of obituary:

Schowalter jacob a 1953.jpg

CALLED AWAY—Jac. A. Schowalter, 73, who died Tuesday, March 10, and for whom funeral services were held at the First Mennonite church, Friday afternoon, March 13. Mr. Schowalter customarily spent much time at his business desk (above), stacked high with papers in the front room of his farm home seven miles southwest of Newton. A man of considerable means, he gave generously to benevolent causes, including educational institutions, missions and relief. The Wurlitzer electric organ in the First Mennonite church is a gift from him. He served three terms in the Kansas state legislature. A second trip to Paraguay he had planned this spring failed to materialize.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Mar 19 p. 6

text of obituary:

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— A large assembly of relatives and friends from the Newton vicinity, as well as many from other communities, attended the J. A. Schowalter funeral at 2:30 p.m, Friday, March 13, at the First Mennonite church. A service for the closest relatives was held earlier in the afternoon at the Kaufman funeral home in Halstead. Ministers who participated here were Rev. D. J. Unruh, Rev. J. E. Entz and Dr. J. H. Langenwalter. A men's quartet sang three of Mr. Schowalter's best-loved hymns, one of them in German. Interment was made in the Halstead cemetery, at the side of his parents, Heinrich and Marie Schowalter.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Mar 26 p. 1

text of obituary:

Bulk of Estate Left to Three Conferences

Will of Late J. A. Schowalter Submitted For Probate in Local Court Last Week

The will of J. A. Schowalter, well known Harvey County farmer, stockman, legislator and financier, whose death occurred March 10, was submitted for probate in the local court last week, Sam H. Sturm, probate judge, announced Wednesday.

The will was submitted by A. C. Detweiler, Halstead banker, and Wm. F. Schowalter of Jetmore, a cousin. Judge H. H. Sizemre is attorney for the estate.

Bulk to Conferences

After certain specific bequests to the next of kin and several employees, the bulk of the estate, according to terms of the will, goes for the General Conference of the Mennonite Church, the (Old) Mennonite General Conference, and the Church of God in Christ, Mennonite. Administration of the estate to be jointly held by the three conferences is placed in the hands of trustees, to be appointed as provided for in the will.

Among the purposes for which proceeds of the trust can be used are, aid to ministers and missionaries, support of Deaconesses, education and training of Christian workers, MCC refugee resettlement projects and promotion of world peace.

Upon filing of the petition for probate by Judge Sizemore, the hearing was set by Judge Sturm for Friday, April 16.

Estimate Around $1,000,000

Friends and acquaintances of Mr. Schowalter estimate his estate to exceed one million dollars. Mr. Sizemore states, however, he is not in position to give any figures at this time except to say that the amount is substantial.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Mar 26 p. 9

text of obituary:

J. A. SCHOWALTER

Jacob Abraham Schowalter was born at Friedelsheim, Bavaria on September 25, 1879, the fourth child of Heinrich and Marie Risser Schowalter. He departed this life at the age of 73 years, four months and 13 days on March 10, 1953. His spirit was released to enter the presence of Him in whom he had believed and whom he had served.

Together with his parents, three brothers and two sisters, he came to America in June 1883 and located on a farm near Halstead, Kansas. In his early life he was deprived of both of his parents, father passing away in May of 1885 and the mother in the fall of 1890, leaving the family of six children orphans.

In 1894, on September 9, he was baptized upon the confession of his faith by Rev, Christian Krehbiel and became a member of the Halstead Mennonite church. In 1942 he transferred his membership to the First Mennonite church of Newton, where he remained a faithful and active member until his death.

After completing the rural schools, he attended Bethel College and the Kansas State Agricultural College at Manhattan.

His life was characterized by hard work, integrity, frugality, sincerity, simplicity, a high standard of life, deep Christian convictions and constructive benevolences.

Brother Schowalter taught the men's Sunday school class of the Newton First Mennonite church for several years, was on the building committee when the addition to the church was built, and served the church and the conference in other capacities. He served his state as Representative from Harvey county for three terms. For many years he was overseer and treasurer of the Leisy Orphan Aid Society and for nine years a member of the Board of Directors of the Bethel Deaconess Home and Hospital Society, where his insight and counsel were much appreciated.

The Lord had blessed him with earthly goods which he considered to be a sacred trust as a steward of God, and which he enjoyed to share with many in need. Churches, Christian institutions, the foreign relief work and many other causes can speak of his benevolent spirit. He loved to help small, new congregations build their houses of worship and found many other ways to support the Lord's work financially. The organ, enriching the services for many years, is a gift by him to the First Mennonite church. The fact that the guests at the Bethel Home for the aged can share at this moment in the message is due to his generosity and love to help others.

The foreign relief work had a very warm place in his heart and was liberally supported by him. After World War II, he adopted 22 needy families and regularly sent them CARE packages for many months. A year ago, on March 2, he left with a group of like minded friends on a good-will tour of Paraguay, spending several weeks there for the purpose of finding ways and means to help new emigrants in a program of economic development in industrial and farming operations. His Christian character showed itself in high ideals and noble purposes.

He became ill, and just five weeks before death he entered the Bethel Deaconess hospital, but the best of care and the doctor’s skill could not hold back the fast ebbing life.

Two brothers and two sisters preceded him in death. There remain to mourn his departure one brother, F. W. Schowalter of Halstead; six nephews, three nieces and their families; Bro. and Sister Titus Yost, who lived in his home with him for a number of years, and a host of other relatives and friends.

Now he is at home with the Lord! “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth; Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; for their works follow them.”

Memorial services for Mr. Schowalter were conducted on Friday afternoon, March 13, 1953 at 2:30 o’clock from the First Mennonite church of Newton preceded by a short prayer service for immediate relatives in the Kaufman funeral chapel at Halstead. The clergymen officiating were: Rev. D. J. Unruh, Rev. J. E. Entz and Rev. J. H. Langenwalter. A quartet composed of Edwin Regier, Willard Enns, Herman Regier, and Irvin Goertzen sang, “Have You Heard of That Beautiful Stream,” “My Jesus, I Love Thee” and “Take Thou My Hand, O Father.” Mrs. Edith Harms was the organist. As organ selections, she played hymns and German chorales which ware favorites of Mr. Schowalter.

He was laid to rest in the family lot in the Halstead cemetery by the side of his parents. The Kaufman funeral Home was in charge of funeral arrangements. Casket bearers were Adam Nightengale of Halstead, Joe Detweiler, Titus Jost, Dr. H. R. Schmidt, Ernest Bachman and W. P. Miles, all of Newton.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Apr 2 p. 6

text of obituary:

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. . .

— Upon invitation by Judge H. H. Sizemore, attorney for the J. A. Schowalter estate, some 18 representatives of the General Conference, the Old Mennonite conference, and the Church of God in Christ, Mennonite, met unofficially last Friday evening in the offices of the Spier, Stroberg & Sizemore law firm to hear a report on the will of the late Mr. Schowalter. Mr. Sizemore, presiding as chairman, gave a general outline of the provisions of the will, which designates the bulk of the estate for the above-named conferences. Dr. J. E. Hartzler, special Bible Week lecturer at Bethel College, who had also been invited to the meeting, closed the session with prayer.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1953 Dec 3 p. 1


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1954 Jan 7 p. 3

text of obituary:

Schowalter Will Contested

HEIRS ASK SHARE IN ONE MILLION DOLLAR ESTATE OF LATE J. A. SHOWALTER ['sic SCHOWALTER]

A petition contesting the will of the late J. A. Showalter ['sic Schowalter], prominent Harvey county farmer and stockman, under which the bulk of his $1,157,309 estate is left to three Mennonite conferences, was filed in the Harvey county probate court on Dec. 31, 1953.

Mr. Showalter ['sic Schowalter], who was never married, died a year ago next March 10, at the age of 73.

The petitioners are Harold A. Schowalter, Wilbur H. Schowalter, Carol Schowalter Holman and Richard A. Schowalter, children of Henry Schowalter, deceased, a brother of the late Mr. Schowalter. Three of the petitioners reside in Wichita. The filing was through the Wichita law firm of Hiebsch & Zacharias and D. Arthur Walter of Arkansas city.

The date for the hearing has been tentatively set for Feb. 2. Probate Judge Sam H. Stum stated on Wednesday.

The petitioners allege that “they have a direct interest in the validity, or invalidity”of the Schowalter will and that the trust set up therein is “not charitable in nature . . . . violates the rule against perpetuities . . . . fails to establish with certainty definite objects and purposes” and is “based upon contingencies and is “based upon contingencies and remote visionary whims of the testator.”

Attached to the petition is a copy of “The Charter and Constitution of the General Conference of the Mennonite Church of N. A. (as revised and adopted in 1929)“ in reference to which it is stated that “one of the basic fundamentals (which trustees . . . are repeatedly required by the testator to conserve promulgate and further) is the doctrine of non-resistance; that said basic fundamental has been promulgated by the General Conference of the Mennonite Church of N. A., the Mennonite General Conference (Old Mennonite) and the Church of God in Christ Mennonite” and “that the use of the corpus and income: as designated “is contrary to public policy and as expressed in legislation duly

In various other allegations and involved references to stipulations of the will, the petition contests the basic principles of religious freedom and states that the purposes of promoting world peace and religious and educational benefits are opposed to the public interest and polity.

H. H. Sizemore, of the Newton law firm Speir, Stroberg & Sizemore, attorneys for the estate, said, “We believe the petitioners overlook the fact that freedom of religion is guaranteed in the Bill of Rights of the Federal Constitution; that the world peace objective cannot be contrary to public policy but in fact tends to promote the public interest, and that education and charitable objectives are not contrary to public policy but tend to relieve the public of a public obligation.” The petitioners ask that the will be declared “null and void . . . . and that an undivided one-half interest therein be awarded and assigned to these petitioners.”

The Schowalter will is now under probate, with A. C. Detweiler, Halstead, and Wm P. Schowalter, Jetmore, serving as executors.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1954 Mar 4 p. 1


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1955 Oct 20 p. 1

text of obituary:

Major Portion of Schowalter Estate Becomes Property of Churches

JUDGE STURM SIGNS ORDER TRANSFERRING KANSAS HOLDINGS TO SCHOWALTER FOUNDATION

Upward of $700,000 of Kansas real estate owned by the late J. A. Schowalter was legally transferred here this week to the Schowalter Foundation, Inc., and thereby to three Mennonite conferences, through an Order of Partial Distribution signed by Judge Sam Sturm of the Harvey County Probate Court.

Three Conferences Named

The three conferences becoming beneficiaries of the large estate are The General Conference Mennonite Church, The (Old) Mennonite Church, and the Church of God in Christ, Mennonite.

Jacob A. Schowalter, 73, wealthy Harvey county farmer and stockman, died March 10, 1953, leaving a will directing that his estate be held in trust by the three named bodies for religious and charitable purposes and for the promotion of world peace. He was a member of the Newton First Mennonite church.

“With all major indebtedness against the estate having been paid and all contingent claimants having released all claims, this sizeable distribution can be made at this time,” said Herbert H. Sizemore, of the law firm Spier, Stroberg & Sizemore, attorneys for the executors and trustees.

Excess of 7,500 Acres

Farm lands involved in the distribution total more than 7,500 acres and are located as follows: Harvey county, approximately 2,000 acres; Scott county, 2,200 acres; Sedgwick county, 560 acres, Sherman county, 880 acres; Stevens county, 2,100 acres. Included is also some property in the City of Newton.

Additional properties in Oklahoma and in Paraguay are to be handed over to the Foundation at a later date.

Trustees of the Schowalter Foundation, Inc. are H. J. Andres and Ernest Bachman, Newton, representing the General Conference; Orie O. Miller, Akron, Pa., and Albert Weaver, of near Hesston, representing the (Old) Mennonite conference; D. C. Buller, Halstead, and Adin Holdeman, Hesston, representing the Church of God in Christ, Mennonite. Executors for the estate are A. C. Dettweiler, Halstead, and Wm. P. Schowalter, Newton.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1957 Jun 13 p. 1

text of obituary:

$1,000,000 Estate Closed, Handed Over To Churches

PLEASED LARGE ESTATE CAN GO FOR SUCH SPLENDID CAUSE, SAYS JUDGE STURM IN SIGNING ORDER

Final disposition of the $1,000,000 J. A. Schowalter estate was made at the Harvey County court house Tuesday at 10:30 a. m. when Probate Judge Sam Sturm signed the order closing the estate and officially transferring the property into the hands of three designated Mennonite conferences.

"I am pleased and gratified that this large estate can be handed over to such splendid cause," said Judge Sturm as he signed the papers which now constitute a document of considerable Mennonite historic significance.

The three conferences named as beneficiaries are the (Old) Mennonite Church, the General Conference Mennonite church, and the Church of god in Christ, Mennonite, with title to the property held jointly through the Schowalter Foundation, Inc.

Present at the Tuesday hearing in the offices of Judge Sturm were H. J. Andres, administrator of the Schowalter Foundation, Inc., A. C. Dettweiler, executor, and attorneys Herbert H. Sizemore and Rodney Stone.

Extensive Land Holdings

The estate of the late J. A. Schowalter consists of extensive land holdings in central and western Kansas, some farm lands in Oklahoma and also a sizeable undeveloped acreage in Paraguay. Mr. Schowalter, wealthy Harvey county farmer and stockman, died March 10, 1953, leaving a will directing that his estate be held in trust by the three named bodies for religious and charitable purposes and for the promotion of world peace. He was a member of the Newton First Mennonite Church.

Trustees of the Schowalter Foundation, Inc. are: For the General Conference, H. J. Andres and Ernest Bachman, Newton; (Old) Mennonite Church, Orie O. Miller, Akron, Pa., and Al Weaver, Hesston; Church of God in Christ, Mennonite, Adin Holdeman, Hesston, and D. C. Buller, Halstead.


Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1957 Jul 4 p. 1

text of obituary:

Schowalter j a 1957.jpg

MILLION DOLLAR TRANSACTION — Judge Sam H. Sturm of the Harvey County Probate Court signs the order closing the $1,000,000 J. A. Schowalter estate and officially transferring the property into the hands of three Mennonite conferences. Looking on are (l. to r.) Atty. Herbert H. Sizemore, representing the estate, A. C. Dettweiler, one of the two appointed executors, H. J. Andres, administrator of the newly organized Schowalter Foundation, Inc., and Atty. Rodney Stone, representing unknown heirs, minors and disabled persons. The three Mennonite conferences to whom the estate was wille by the late mr. Schowalter are The (Old) Mennonite Church, The General Conference Mennonite Church, and The Church of God in Christ, Mennonite.

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