Stuart E. Knappen

Stuart E. Knappen is engaged in the practice of law in the city of Grand Rapids, as a member of the representative firm of Knappen, Uhl & Bryant, with offices in the Michigan Trust Building. Mr. Knappen is a native son of Michigan and here has made a record of successful achievement in a profession that has been signally dignified and honored by the character and distinguished service of his father, Judge Loyal E. Knappen, of whom specific record is given on other pages of this publication. Stuart E. Knappen was born at Hastings, judicial center of Barry county, Michigan, August 30, 1877, and is a son of Judge Loyal E. and Amelia Isabelle (Kenyon) Knappen, who now maintain their home in Grand Rapids, Judge Knappen having retired in 1924 from the bench of the Sixth Circuit of the United States Circuit Court, of which important judicial office he had been the incumbent since 1910. In a private school in his native city, Stuart E. Knappen acquired his rudimentary education, and he was ten years of age at the time of the family removal from Hastings to Grand Rapids, in the public schools of which latter city he continued his studies until his graduation in the high school in 1894. In preparation for his chosen profession he completed the full course in the academic department of the University of Michigan, in which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1898 with the degree of B. A. His admission to the bar of his native state came in 1900, at which time he became associated with his father in the practice of law in Grand Rapids, Judge Knappen having at that time been a member of the law firm of Taggart, Knappen & Denison, and the firm later having become Wanty & Knappen. When the subject of this review was admitted to his fatherís firm, the title of it was changed to Knappen, Kleinhans & Knappen, and when, in 1906 Judge Knappen began his service on the bench of the United States District Court of the Western District of Michigan, and thus retired from the law firm, the title of the latter became Kleinhans & Knappen. When Marshall M. Uhl was admitted to the firm, the name was changed to Kleinhans, Knappen & Uhl, and upon the death of Mr. Kleinhans, in 1918, Stuart E. Knappen advanced to the head of the new law firm of Knappen, Uhl & Bryant, in which his valued coadjutors are Marshall M. Uhl and Harold W. Bryant. Under the successive changes in its personnel this representative law organization has controlled a large and important business, has been retained in many litigations of more than passing note, and has represented at all stages a clientage of representative order. In his stewardship as a resourceful trial lawyer and well-fortified counselor, Mr. Knappen has admirably upheld the professional prestige of the family name, and he has rank among the able and highly esteemed members of the bar of his native state. He is known also as a citizen of distinctive progressiveness and he is associated with numerous business and civic enterprises in his home city. He is a director of the Grand Rapids Mutual Building & Loan Association and the Grand Rapids Railway Company, and he had served several years as a director of the Peopleís Savings Bank, until its recent merging with the Kent County Bank. He is a director of the Grand Rapids Association of Commerce and also of the Merchants Life Insurance Company, and has served as president of the local Rotary Club. His political allegiance is given to the Republican Party. He has membership in the American, the Michigan State and the Grand Rapids Bar Associations, is identified with leading civic and social organizations in his home city and he and his wife hold membership in St. Markís pro-cathedral. In 1902, Mr. Knappen married Miss Edna Pilcher, of St. Louis, Michigan, and her death occurred in 1913, she being survived by three children: Polly, Jane and Elizabeth. In 1916 was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Knappen to Miss Claire Vesey, of Memphis, Tennessee, and she is a popular figure in the social activities of Grand Rapids.

Pages 204-206 History of Kent County

Transcriber: Mary Huizen
Created: 7 February 2003