Pietro (Peter) Bisso was born in Genoa, Italy in 1840 and
came to the United States when in his 30's, settling in Corsicana in the mid
1870's. He was an early bottler in Corsicana and had a reputation among the
aristocratic old women of the time for being a nasty individual. He spoke
seven languages and cursed fluently in all of them. Living not far
from him on "Bois D'Arc Street"-- I think that later became Main Street--was a
family named Eisinger. Jacob Eisinger had come to Corsicana from Prussia about
1874 and his house sat on what is now the corner of W. 7th Avenue and
Main--where the K. Wolens Warehouse was.
Jacob Eisinger and his wife Wilhelmina (nee Grsha) had three
children, Elizabeth, Wilhelmina, and Jacob, Jr.
Although probably harmless enough, Mr. Eisinger used to sit on his front porch
with his wife and the children of 1880's Corsicana were much afraid to pass by
as the couple always seemed to be glaring at them.
Elizabeth Eisinger married George Blume and moved to Dallas where she had two
daughters, Mathilde (Tillie) and Rose prior to George's early death in 1878.
Elizabeth did not remarry and died in Dallas in 1899.
Although the Eisinger home wasn't large, old Jacob kept a big wine cellar. In
the mid-1880's the wine started to disappear at intervals and he became
convinced that some animal was getting in the cellar and drinking the wine. In
1886 he decided to add some poison to some of the contents and tragically, was
to find Jacob, Jr. dead beside it the next morning. Apparently the teenager had
been slipping into the wine cellar at night and sampling his father's stash.
It was quite a scandal in 1879 when 39 year old Peter Bisso married 13 year old
Wilhelmina (Minna) Eisinger. Rumors abounded in Corsicana that old Mr. and
Mrs. Eisinger had been paid a nice amount of money to *sell*
Minna to the nasty Italian who was wanting a wife and couldn't find anyone
willing to fill that role. Even as late as the 1970's, older residents of
Corsicana that remembered the couple would shudder
when talking about the marriage and make comments like "God that was horrible!"
Peter and Minna Bisso did not have children though the
marriage endured and seems to have been a happy one. Peter continued with his
bottling company for years and they lived in a home on the site of what was
later to be the Twilight Home (when it was located near the Cotton Mill). Old
Jacob Eisinger died in 1905 and his wife became mentally unbalanced. The next
year Minna Bisso found her mother dead in a cistern and it was
believed Mrs. Eisinger had jumped into the cistern and drowned herself. Within a
Peter and Minna left Corsicana and moved to Corpus Christi
and lived there the rest of their lives. Peter died in 1912 and Minna died of
Grave's Disease in 1916. They are buried in Rose Hill Cemetery in Corpus
Elizabeth Blume's two girls left Texas after their mother's death in Dallas.
Mathilde "Tillie" had married Stephen Moeller in Dallas and lived briefly in
Corsicana around the turn of the century. In Corsicana, she gave birth to twins
that were stillborn. She and Stephen moved to St. Louis, Missouri where they had
other children and lived out their lives. Tillie's sister Rose married Frank
Saylor and lived in Kansas City, Kansas but they divorced after a few years of
Attached is a scan of what I think is the only existing photo of Peter Bisso. I
have one of Minna Bisso as well but can't seem to put my hand on it. She was a
dark-haired, plump little woman.
Navarro County TXGenWeb
Edward L. Williams & Barbara