William Berkstresser is an old resident of Morgan County, Mo., having come here from his native State of Pennsylvania in 1867. He was born June 18, 1824, and is a son of John W. and Barbara (Shockler) Berkstresser, being the fifth of their eight children, whose names are as follows: George, who died in 1884; Mary, the widow of Jacob Weaver, now living in Pennsylvania; John, now a banker in Buda, Ill.; David, an orange grower in Flordia; Daniel S., a resident of Morgan County; Henry, a farmer and merchant of Cass County, Mo., and Jacob S., a cigar manufacturer of Pennsylvania. William Berkstresser remained under the shelter of the paternal roof until he was twenty years of age, at which time he began lumbering on the Susquehanna River, continuing for twenty odd years. He and his brother Daniel owned a small farm on that river, from which they rafted logs. In March, 1845, he was married to Miss Elizabeth Putt, and in 1867 came to Missouri, purchasing 200 acres of land in Morgan County, on which he is now residing. Mr. Berkstresser also operated a saw-mill for two years after his arrival, and in the meantime was endeavoring to clear and improve his land. He built his house without any help, and by good management and energy has succeeded in putting about 150 acres under cultivation, and is quite extensively engaged in stock-raising. He is a member of the Wheel, the I. O. O. F., and the Masonic fraternity. In 1861 his first wife died, leaving a family of six children: Daniel (deceased), Sarah (wife of John Hodge, now in Morgan County), Mary Jane (deceased), Henry (in Morgan County), Frances (wife of Joseph McMoore), and Amanda (wife of William Moore). In 1862 Mr. Berkstresser wedded Catherine Griffith, by whom he has ten children: Barbara J., wife of Adam Freedley; Rebecca, wife of H. H. Rumans; Clara, wife of E. L. Rumans; Olive, Georgia, Forney, Adam and Jacob. Mary Jane is the wife of Samuel Good. Lincoln and John are deceased. He has thirty-six grandchildren living and six dead.
History of Cole, Moniteau, Morgan, Benton, Miller, Maries and Osage Counties, Missouri, Goodspeed Publishing Co., 1889.