Since this last posting, I have done more research and found that my line came from Sonnenberg, Nassau, Germany.
I have the line back to Hans Jacob Jeckell and wife Florina. Hans was born before 1640 in Wüstems, Hessen-Nassau, Germany.
The father of Philip Ludwig Jeckel was Johann Sebastian Jäckel who owned a brewery in Sonnenberg. It is felt by the family that Philip apprenticed with his father and learned the brewery business and came to America to start his own business. He came on the ship, Hilah from Le Havre, France to New Orleans and then went up the Mississippi River settling in St. Clair Co. IL. in 1838. Philip was said to have travelled to surrounding areas testing the water when he finally established Yeakel and Co. Brewery in Alton because the water there was the closest in taste to his home in Sonnenburg. The family also ran a saloon on the north side of 5th and East Ridge streets in Alton to enhance their sales.
When Philip died intestate in 1854, his sons-in-law, Jacob Haas and Friederich Keck were appointed guardians over his minor children. Philip's widow remarried and she and her new husband were collecting monies owed to the estate and not reporting it to the court. Jacob Haas and Friederich Keck petitioned the court saying they wanted the Judge to demand these monies. The new husband and Philip's widow then wrote to the court and said Philip had left a will and it was being hidden somewhere in the brewery. It was never found.
Philip's son, George inherited the brewery and his brother-in-law, Jacob Haas continued to help run it as he had with his father-in-law. George built a 3-story house next to the brewery which is today on the National Registry of Historic Homes in Alton, IL.
The brewery went out of the family after George and was also known as Union Brewery (it was on Union St.) and finally Bluff City Brewery. It was still brewing beer in the 1940s when my brother remembers going there with our dad to buy cases of beer for picnics.
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