Jean Gaspard Weiss

Gravestone of Gaspard Weiss-Fries,
Protestant Cemetery, Mulhouse
Industrialist in Kingersheim
Also known as Gaspard Weiss-Fries

Born: 25 June 1820, Mulhouse
Died: 19 January 1894, Kingersheim

Father: Jean Georges Weiss, 1785-1874
Mother: Barbara Blech, 1786-1843

Spouse: Armande Fanny Fries 1833-1914
Married 29 December 1851 in Mulhouse. Witnesses for groom: Jean Georges Mieg, clothier, aged 63, uncle of the groom, and Godefroi Engelmann, lithography printer, aged 37, friend of the groom. Witness for bride: Mathieu Thierry-Mieg, chemist, aged 40, friend of the bride. There was another witness for Armande as well, but they forgot to note who it was in the marriage record!

  • Georges Gustave Albert, 1852-?
  • Fanny Bertha, 1856-1917
  • Josué Gaspard Robert, 1863-1927

Biographical information
Gaspard Weiss-Fries had a printing company, Weiss Fries et Cie, based in Kingersheim, which had outlets in Paris, London, New York and Vienna in its prime (Schoeser & Dejardin, 1991) and employed more than 800 people. It would seem that Weiss Fries et Cie was very successful for a short amount of time, and then perhaps because of bad business sense, towards the end operated at a loss. Ludwig Böing (related to the Boeing family of aviation) who managed the Thierry Mieg printing, was approached to take over the firm, but he refused, so the company was liquidated in 1899.

In 1867, Gaspard took over the position of mayor of Kingersheim from his father-in-law Josué Fries, and held the role until 1872. He also established the Kingersheim Library, and hoped to encourage the villagers to develop a love of reading (Macé, 1891).

Gaspard Weiss-Fries died in Kingersheim on 19 January 1894, and is buried in the Protestant Cemetery, Mulhouse. The following notice was in Le Temps on 21 January 1894, on page 2:

Macé, J. (1891). Les Origines de la Ligue de L'ensignement (1861-1870). G Charpentier et E Fasquelle.
Schoeser, M. & Dejardin, K. (1991). French Textiles, from 1760 to the present. L King.