KNAECKER, ANGELINA BISSONNET ST. JEST (1848 ~ 1936). Angelina Bissonnet St. Jest Knaecker, Confederate widow, was born March 16, 1848, in Paris, France to Bening Bissonnet and Rena Renard, both of France. Upon immigrating to Texas circa 1856, the Bissonnets settled in Beaumont, Jefferson County.
On October 19, 1865, she married Charles Frederick St. Jest, also a native of France, at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in Houston. Charles St. Jest, a Confederate veteran, served in Company A of the 11th Battalion, Texas Volunteers, which, in 1864, was consolidated with Griffin's Texas Infantry Battalion to form the 21st Regiment, Texas Infantry.
On August 13, 1866, the couple had a daughter, Olive (sometimes referred to as Alice) Josephine Virginia, who was baptized at St. Vincent de Paul. It appears that she died soon after, as she does not appear with her parents on the 1870 census. Sometime between 1870 and the early 1890s, the two moved back to France, but both were back in Houston by 1897. They appear in the 1900 Houston city directory, where Angelina was listed as working as a seamstress for Mistrot Bros. & Co.
On August 6, 1906, Charles St. Jest died and was buried in Washington Cemetery in Houston. After his death, she successfully applied for his pension from the State of Texas and, according to the 1910 census, was working as a matron at the DePelchin Faith Home, a home for abandoned or adoptive children.
In 1911, she married German immigrant Ludwig Knaecker. Because of her marriage, she was no longer able to receive Charles St. Jest's pension. It was discontinued on April 16, 1911.
By 1920, the newly married couple lived in Crockett County, Texas, but later moved to Harlingen, Cameron County, where he died on July 4, 1927. After his death, she moved back to Houston and lived with one of her brothers. At age 81, she once again began receiving Charles St. Jest's Confederate Pension from the State of Texas. She was notified of her reinstatement on February 25, 1929.
On April 6, 1932, she moved to Austin to live in the Confederate Woman's Home, where she died on October 9, 1936. She initially stated that she was to be buried next to her first husband, Charles, in Houston, but later decided to be buried in the Texas State Cemetery.
Following a small funeral service in the Woman's Home, Angelina Bissonnet St. Jest Knaecker was buried in the State Cemetery the next day. Her family from Houston was in attendance.
Information taken from: Confederate Pension Applications #s 11753 and
12387; Application for Admission to the Texas Confederate Woman's Home;
and from census and church records collected by researchers Cathy
Fitch, Bernice Mistrot, and Gus Mistrot of the Washington Cemetery
Historic Trust, Houston, Texas.