IN MEMORY OF
FRED WESSELS, SENIOR
WHOSE VISION, FAITH AND COURAGE MADE
THESE COMPANIES POSSIBLE
ATLANTIC MUTUAL INSURANCE COMPANY
SOUTHERN SAVINGS & LOAN COMPANY
ATLANTIC INSURANCE & INVESTMENT COMPANY
Fred Wessels, Senior was born on October 26th, 1879, in Savannah, Georgia, and died July 31st, 1950, in Hendersonville, North Carolina. He was buried in his hometown in a gray granite Art Deco mausoleum in the Bonaventure Cemetery.
The mausoleum has the horizontal lines and the geometric patterns that are characteristic of the style. Art Deco is a design movement from the 1920s that marked a break from the fluid and flowing Art Nouveau designs of the 1890s. The term ‘Art Deco’ is derived from the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes, an exhibition of artists that showed their work in Paris in 1925. Arts Décoratifs was eventually truncated to Art Deco.
Wessels was a successful banker and businessman who wanted to be remembered for founding three insurance and banking businesses. To make sure passersby were witness to his success a bronze plaque was affixed to the side of the tomb with his bas-relief portrait touting his accomplishments.