Moses D. Garmer was born on Oct. 17, 1807 in Macungie Township, Lehigh County, PA, the son of Johann Dietrich "Dieter" and Anna Elizabeth (Heinly) Gaumer.
He was twice married and, in all, was the father and stepfather of 13 children.
In about 1825, he was united in matrimony with his first bride, Elizabeth Salome Guth ( ? - ? ).
The young couple resided in Carbon County, PA and bore six children, among them Evan Daniel Gaumer, Anna Maria Laury, Malinda Beisel, Lissette Gaumer, James Alfred Gaumer and Franklin Lewis Gaumer. They may also have borne or raised Lucinda (Gaumer) Cook, reputedly the daughter of James Gaumer and Rosie Good.
Sadly, Elizabeth is believed to have died in about 1850, and their daughter Lissette also did not survive childhood.
After a short period of mourning, Moses was united in holy wedlock in 1850 with his second bride, 31-year-old widow Susanna "Sarah" (Laury) Frankenfield (Oct. 24, 1819-1881). She was the daughter of John Jacob and Susanna (Wieser) Laury. A direct descendant has said that under the old German custom, Susanna was the name of her saint, and Sarah her given name.
Having been married before to Charles F. Frankenfield ( ? -1847), she brought two children to the marriage, Matilda Beggs and Franklin J. Frankenfield.
When the federal census was taken in 1850, the Gaumers made their home in South Whitehall Township, Lehigh County, with Moses earning a living as a shoemaker, and the two Frankenfield children in the household.
The couple went on to have at least five other children -- Sarah "Josephine" Jackson, William Henry "Bill" Gaumer, Wallace Moses "Wiley" Gaumer, Roseann Lutz and Emma "Caroline" Boyle.
By 1860, Moses appears to have adopted the Frankenfield step-children and had their surnames changed to "Gaumer." During the Civil War, the family worried as the two eldest sons joined the Union Army and saw battle action. Anxiety turned to grief when son Franklin died far away from home, in Virginia, in 1862.
During the latter half of the 1860s, following the birth of their daughter Emma, the Gaumers migrated west. They first went to Wisconsin, living in the Green Bay community, and then in 1869 pushed south to Illinois and settled on a farm in Eliza, Mercer County. The family is enumerated in Eliza in the 1870 United States Census. After arriving in Mercer County, for reasons not yet known, the family name began to be spelled "Garmer."
Moses died in Eliza on March 9, 1871, at the age of 63.
Sarah outlived her spouse by a decade. Federal census records for 1880 show her at age 62 living in the home of her daughter and son-in-law, Matilda and Hugh Beggs, in New Boston, Mercer County. Also in the household at that time were her unmarried son Wallace and daughter Emma.
She joined Moses in death three days after Christmas 1881.
In about 1910, Moses remains were moved to Eliza Creek Cemetery, and a stone erected at the grave, spelled "Garmer." [Find-a-Grave] For some unknown reason his birthdate as inscribed on the gravestone's face (Dec. 15, 1800) was off by seven-plus years.
~ Son Evan Daniel Gaumer ~
Son Evan Daniel Gaumer (1828-1888) -- sometimes misspelled "Eben" -- was born five days before Christmas in 1828. He learned the trade of flour-milling which provided him with a living over many decades of work.
Evan married Sarah E. Wertz (April 9, 1831-1904).
The couple produced a large family of seven known children -- Joseph F. Gaumer, John W. Gaumer, Maria Gaumer, Thomas Gaumer, James Gaumer, Emma Gaumer and Ellen Bauer.
When the federal census count was made in 1860, the Gaumers lived in Lower Towamensing, Carbon County, PA, with a post office address of Lehigh Gap. That year, 20-year-old Moses Moyer lived under their roof.
With an established life and family in Carbon County, he did not join his father and step-mother in their migration to Illinois in the late 1860s. The 1870 U.S. Census shows the family in Franklin Township, Carbon County, with their oldest two sons working at the local furnace, son Thomas laboring as a 13-year-old teamster and 19-year-old Ellen Drumbower in the household.
At the age of 59, Evan died on Nov. 8, 1888. Burial was in Union Hill Cemetery in Weissport, Carbon County. [Find-a-Grave]
Sarah lived beyond her husband by 16 years and went to live with her married daughter Maria Catherine Brown in Parryville, Carbon County. She died there, at the age of 73, in November 1904. Funeral services were held in the Brown residence and later at St. Peter's Evangelical Church in Weissport. Rev. Ginder preached the funeral sermon, and an obituary was printed in the Allentown Leader.
Son Joseph F. Gaumer (1851-1935) was born in about 1851 in Lower Towmensing, PA. He married Sarah Schier (June 4, 1852-1934), of Parryville, Carbon County, her maiden name also spelled "Sherry" and "Sherer." She was the daughter of Adam and Catharine (Kline) Schier. Their family of children included Mary Harlan, Nora Rehrig, Margaret "Maggie" Straup, Percy Albert Gaumer, Evan Gaumer, John Gaumer, James Gaumer, Aaron E. Gaumer, Robert Gaumer, Emals C. Gaumer and Martin Gaumer. They lived in Parryville, Carbon County, PA in 1871-1880, East Mauch Chunk in 1904, Union Hill in 1928 and Penn Forest/Lehighton in the mid-1930s. For reasons not yet known, Joseph surrendered their Union Hill property via sheriff's sale in October 1926. The tract included a two-and-a-half story frame house, covered by a slate roof, measuring 14 ft. by 22 ft., connected to a one-story frame building measuring 12 ft. by 12 ft. and a kitchen building at 12 ft. by 20 ft. They endured the untimely deaths of their 49-year-old daughter Maggie Straup in 1928 and 61-year-old daughter Nora Gaumer in 1934. Further sadness enveloped the family when Sarah, having borne hardening of the arteries for years, died at home in North Weissport, at age 82, on July 28, 1934. Mennonite pastor Rev. J.C. Roth led the funeral services, with burial in the Lehighton Cemetery. Joseph only lived for a year as a widower. He suffered a cerebral stroke and died in the home of his son Percy in Franklin, Carbon County, just a few weeks shy of his 85th birthday, on the Fourth of July 1935. Percy was the informant for the official Pennsylvania certificate of death. The Mauch Chunk Times-News reported that "He was ill many weeks." An obituary in the Allentown Morning Call noted that he was survived by 19 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. His remains were lowered into eternal rest in the Lehighton Cemetery, with Rev. J.C. Roth, of the Lehighton Mennonite Church, preaching the funeral sermon.
Son John W. Gaumer (1852-1928) was born on Oct. 20, 1852. He was joined in marriage with Mary "Sarah" E. Strohl (Sept. 1, 1854-1911), daughter of Samuel A. and Christiana (Bier) Strohl. Their offspring were Bessie "Ethel" Heldt, Estella Arner and Lee Strohl Gaumer. John was a self-employed retail lumber dealer, operating Gaumer and Son. John made a home in Weissport, Carbon County circa 1904. With a head for finance, he also was a board director of the Weissport National Bank. Their home was on Union Hill, and they worshipped at St. Peter's U.E. Church. Sarah was diagnosed with stomach cancer in early 1911. Her health declined rapidly, and she succumbed at the age of 57 on Nov. 2, 1911. Funeral services were held in the family home, conducted in German by Rev. D.F. Koztenbader. Interment was in Union Hill Cemetery, followed by a well-attended memorial service at Jacob's Reformed Church in Weissport, preached by Rev. W.F. Binder. Her pallbearers included Edward Solt, Sylvanus Berger, Al Buck, William Brown, Osbon Houser and William Arner. John lived for another 17 years. In 1924, his business now operating under the name "Lehighton Lumber Company," the garage and neighboring barn of Wilson Wehr burned due to "unknown origin," said the Mauch Chunk Times-News. The loss of $3,000 was covered by insurance. He passed away from a combination of hardening of the arteries and bronchitis on Jan. 8, 1928. The funeral service was held in the family home, "strictly private," said the Allentown Morning Call, and conducted by Rev. H.W. Kreibel. "The body lay in state Tuesday evening when a large number of friends paid last respects to the deceased." Burial was in Union Hill Cemetery in Weissport. Daughter Estella Arner signed the Pennsylvania death certificate. Son Lee inherited his planing mill business
Daughter Maria Catharine Gaumer (1854-1914) was born on July 3, 1854. She married Thomas Brown ( ? - ? ). They made a home in Parryville, Carbon County. She spent her final years as a widow. On the second day of the new year in 1914, she was stricken with a cerebral stroke. She lingered for 43 days before dying on Valentine's Day 1914. Interment was in Parryville, and Sallie Miller of the town signed the death certificate.
Son Thomas E. Gaumer (1856-1931) was born on April 19, 1856 in Millport, PA. He married Sabilla L. (Hagenbuch) Jones (Feb. 24, 1861-1919), daughter of John and Catherine (Heckman) Hagenbuch of Moorestown, PA. Evidence suggests that Sabilla may have been married previously and brought a son to the second union, John T. Jones. The couple made a home at 103 Cross Street in Sayre, Bradford County, PA. Thomas was employed early in his career with the Sayre System Shops, rising in 1894 to the position of general foreman of the erecting side of the machine shop. Later, said the Elmira (NY) Star Gazette, he "established his own machine shop, being one of the first automobile salesman and mechanics in the valley." He belonged to the Royal Arcanum and the First Methodist Church. Anxiety swept over the family when Sabilla contracted tuberculosis of the lungs in the fall of 1918. After several months of illness, she died on Feb. 6, 1919, just a few weeks before her 58th birthday. A Sayre Evening Times obituary named her surviving sisters as Mrs. V.L. Weaver of Sayre and mrs. E.A. Jacoby of Easton. Another notice in the Evening Times said that "Friends may view the body at her late home" and that the "family requests that flowers be omitted." Funeral services were held in the family church, with Rev. Ferris D. Cornell preaching. Pallbearers included Grant Hutchinson, L.D. Westfall, W.M. Utter, Utley Teed, W.J. Munn and Lewis J. Fitler. Thomas survived as a widower for another dozen years and remained in their home on Cross Street. In Feb. 1925, he traveled to Lehighton to attend the funeral of his brother James, taking the No. 8 train. Thomas married again to Hattie Ellen (Bradley) Adney (Dec. 28, 1874-1955), daughter of B.W. Bradley of Binghamton, NY. Her children to a previous marriage were Jewel Mills and Clyde Adney, as well as a foster daughter Betty Evans. Together, Thomas and Hattie Ellen owned and operated a taxicab business serving their valley community. They are known to have attended Allentown funeral services in March 1924 for his sister Ellen Bauer. Having suffered from heart disease, he was felled by a cerebral hemorrhage and died two days later, at 103 Cross Street in Sayre, on Jan. 29, 1931. After funeral services in the family church, led by Rev. Einar Bohne-Echolt, his remains were lowered into repose beside his wife in Tioga Point Cemetery. The Star-Gazette reported that he was survived by his widow and brother Joseph of Weissport, Carbon County. Hattie relocated to 317 Desmond Street in Sayre and outlived her spouse by almost a quarter of a century. Said the Evening Times, "Except for a few years when she lived in LeRaysville, Mrs. Gaumer was a Valley resident all of her life." She belonged to the First Baptist Church. As her health failed, she became a resident of the Bradford County Home. There, at the age of 80, she passed into eternity on Feb. 10, 1955. She also rests at Tioga Point Cemetery.
Son James H. Gaumer (1859-1925) was born on June 17, 1859. He was joined in wedlock with Maria Blose ( ? - ? ). They resided for decades in Lehighton, Carbon County, where the Allentown Morning Call once referred to James as "a highly esteemed resident." The couple bore an only son, Robert H. Gaumer. James worked for decades in the Packerton shops of the Lehigh Valley Railroad, holding the position of foreman. Said the Morning Call, he also "was well known as a musician of ability and was formerly connected with the Lehighton and old Liberty bands as a trombone player." Stricken with stomach cancer in 1924, his health declined over the span of months, with death occurring on Feb. 16, 1925, at the age of 65. Rev. Paul R. Pontius preached the sermon at the funeral service, which was held in the Gaumer residence. Burial was in Union Hill Cemetery in or near Weissport, Carbon County. An obituary was printed in the Morning Call.
Daughter Emma L. Gaumer (1862-1923) was born on Oct. 25, 1862 in Parryville, Carbon County. In about 1886, at the age of 24, she entered marital union with 34-year-old Charles H. Hummel (1852-1925), son of Joseph and Amelia (Schoemberger) Hummel. They did not have any children. The couple moved to Philadelphia, where they made a home at 831 North 16th Street. Charles earned a living as a house painter in the city. Emma was a member of the John B. Fine Lodge of the Order of Shepherds of Bethlehem, a social group providing death and disability benefits for members, and also providing advocacy for biblical teachings and the alcoholic temperance cause. The federal census enumeration for 1910 shows the couple keeping boarders in their home, among them Thomas C. and Caroline Knipley and Caroline Eberle. In mid-August 1922, the Hummels along with her married brother Thomas and his newlywed wife left for a driving tour of Rochester, Buffalo and Niagara Falls, NY, in the brother's new Oldsmobile sedan. At the age of 61, having endured chronic heart disease, she contracted acute bronchitis and died a week later on Nov. 12, 1923. Her brother Thomas, traveling from his home in Sayre, PA, is known to have attended her funeral, as recorded in the gossip columns of the Sayre Evening Times. A death notice was published in the Philadelphia Inquirer, misspelling her maiden name as "Gurmer." Charles only outlived her by two years. Just four days before Christmas 1925, he died of an accidental poisoning of gas. His remains were brought to Upper Mauch Chunk Cemetery, with Helen Hawkins, of Mauch Chunk, signing the official Pennsylvania certificate of death.
Daughter Ella J. "Ellen" Gaumer (1871-1924) was born on Nov. 7, 1871 in Parryville, Carbon County. Her husband was Henry Bauer (March 7, 1865-1938), also misspelled "Bowers," a New Jersey native. They were married in about 1888, when Ellen was only 17. The couple bore three children, among them Russell Bauer. Two other children are believed to have died young. Henry worked as a shoe cutter and later as a janitor for the Tilghman Moyer firm. Ellen was considered highly respected in Allentown. Their address was 208 North Church Street. She was a member of the Star Council of the Daughters of America, the Century Temple of the Order of U.A., and the Ebenezer Evangelical Church. In about 1909, she and Henry began performing janitor services at their church, and they continued to do so for 14 years. Henry was a charter member of the Washington Camp, Patriotic Order of the Sons of America and belonged to the Loyal Herd of Buffaloes. But the Bauers struggled as their son Russell, suffering from epilepsy, was admitted to the State Hospital for the Insane in Norristown, and died in 1914. In 1923, Ellen was afflicted with cancer of the kidney, and the organ was removed in surgery (a "nephrectomy") at Sacred Heart Hospital in Allentown, but nothing more could be done. She was discharged and returned home, where she expired on Feb. 28, 1924, at the age of 52. Burial was in Allentown Cemetery, with obituaries appearing in the Allentown Morning Call and Mauch Chunk Times-News. The Morning Call opined that "Her death comes as a distinct shock to her many friends." Her brother Thomas and his wife Hattie Ellen traveled from their home in Sayre, PA to attend the funeral services. Burial was in Allentown Cemetery. After a grieving period, Henry married again on Christmas Eve 1925 to Estella L. Roth ( ? - ? ). The ceremony was held in the parsonage of the Ebenezer church, with Rev. G.W. Hangen officiating, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles L. Blake of Palmerton attending as witnesses. The Morning Call, in a story about the wedding, said that Henry was a shoe-cutter and tht Estella had been a seamstress and a practical nurse. They moved to 234 East Elms Street. The second marriage lasted for almost a baker's dozen years, until cleaved apart by death. Federal census records for 1930 show the couple boarding in the household of Rev. Harry C. Lilly. Suffering from chronic heart problems, in addition to insanity, kidney failure and cystitis, he died on Aug. 10, 1938. Rev. Wert and Rev. Vlot jointly conducted the funeral service in the Bauer home. Flowers were provided by neighbors, the Blake and Knecht families and the Golden Rule Bible Class of the family church, and his slumber robe was a gift from Estella. The Morning Call printed a funeral notice, which named "Irene Webber" of Philadelphia as his daughter, more likely a step-daughter with Estella.
~ Daughter Anna Maria "Mary Ann" (Gaumer) Laury ~
Daughter Anna Maria "Mary Ann" Gaumer (1832-1897) was born on March 12, 1832.
She married Jacob "Jonas" Laury (1830-1896), son of John Jacob and Susanna (Wieser) Laury.
Among their known children were Elizabeth Clara Laury, Amanda S. Hawkins, Uriah D. Laury and William J. Laury.
The family dwelled near Schadt's schoolhouse in Helfrich's Spring in South Whitehall Township near Allentown. Their six-acre property adjoined tracts owned by Lewis Newhard, Jesse Marks and Edwin Snyder. They lived in a two-and-a-half story frame house, with an attached kitchen building, barn and pig sty. Jonas made news in the Allentown Democrat in July 1882 when he raised a cactus plant in their yard, measuring seven feet high, "and having over 400 flowers and buds. The plant presents a beautiful appearance, and attracts much attention," said the Democrat.
Sadly, the couple died about year apart. Jacob succumbed to death at the age of 66 on June 20, 1896. An auction of his house and farm goods was held on Sept. 10, 1896, with son William serving as agent for the heirs. Among their holdings advertised for sale were a good brown mare, good and safe driver, a top buggy, a good top spring wagon, good-as-new truck harness, two new sets of single harnesses, wheelbarrow, full set of carpentry tools, post iron, shovels, three beds, two bureaus, wash stand, six cane seat chairs and rocker, and a dozen assorted chairs. Additional items were an antique corner clock, carpets, good-as-new New Globe range, cooking stove, two tables and sets of queensware and tinware.
Mary Ann died 14 months later in Philadelphia at the age of 65 years, three months and 29 days on July 11, 1897. Her remains were brought back to Allentown for funeral services, held at her married daughter Amanda's home at 327 North Penn Street. She was placed into eternal sleep in Union-West End Cemetery in Allentown. Obituaries were printed in the Allentown Leader and Allentown Morning Call, and a brief notice of her demise was published in the Hazleton (PA) Sentinel. In a twist requiring more research, either Mary Ann or Jonas produced a child separately from their marriage, Mrs. Joseph Lesten, who dwelled in Philadelphia circa 1902.
Daughter Elizabeth Clara Laury ( ? - ? ) is buried in Allentown's Union-West End Cemetery. There are no dates on her grave marker.
Daughter Amanda S. Laury (1854-1907) was born on May 20, 1854 in Lehigh County. She was diagnosed with epilepsy which she bore for her lifetime. Amanda wedded Richard Hawkins ( ? - ? ). Their home was at 327 North Penn Street in Allentown. In July 1897, they hosted the funeral of Amanda's aged mother, who had died in Philadelphia. By 1907, they moved to 419 Liberty Street. On the first day of February 1907, Amanda suffered a stroke of apoplexy and died the following morning, at the age of 52 years, eight months and 12 days. Her remains were placed into rest in Greenwood Cemetery.
Son Uriah D. Laury ( ? -1902) was born on July 24, 1856. He was married to Clara H. (Schaadt) Lentz (Aug. 20, 1859-1935), also spelled "Schadt," and the daughter of William and Clara (Scheirer) Schaadt of Ironton, PA. Clara had been married and divorced previously from Walter L. Lentz (1857-1913), and she brought two children to the second union -- Claude William Lentz, Edwin W. Lentz. They were the parents of four offspring of their own -- Agnes Strohl, James Laury, Howard Laury and Lizzie C. Harris Frankenfield. Uriah belonged to the Fair Council of the Junior Order of United American Mechanics in Allentown. He owned a frame house and lot in South Whitehall Township. Then in July 1898, in a dispute, he was sued by Joseph Ludwig in the Court of Common Pleas of Lehigh County. The property was ordered to be sold via sheriff's sale. By 1902, he was living in Alliance/Stemton, Northampton County, PA. At the age of 45, Uriah died at home on April 10, 1902. Funeral services were conducted in the home and at Mickleys Church by Rev. Dr. J.D. Schindel, with interment in Mickleys Cemetery. The Allentown Leader published an obituary. As a widow, Clara relocated to Fullerton, Lehigh County, where she spent the remaining 32 years of her life and was considered "a highly esteemed resident." Her home was at 416 Third Street. The United States Census of 1920 shows her heading a household including her sons Edwin and Claude, married daughter Lizzie Harris and grandson Daniel Harris, and boarder Daniel Hick. At the age of 75, she was stricken with a cerebral hemorrhage and died in Allentown Hospital on May 4, 1935. She also was buried at Mickleys, with Rev. H.T. Sell officiating. Mrs. Milton Strohl of Northampton was the informant for the death certificate. An obituary was printed in the Allentown Morning Call.
Son William Jonas Laury (1858-1917) was born on Aug. 9, 1858 in South Whitehall Township, Lehigh County. As a boy, he became partially paralyzed on his right size and had to walk with a cane. Then in manhood, he grew to weigh more than 200 lbs. He never married and helped earn his keep by assisting his father. In 1902, at the death of his brother Uriah, William was in Egypt, Lehigh County. Circa 1903, he found employment as a collector for Baltimore Life Insurance Company. He boarded during that time with John Lehrman at 544 North Eighth Street. To his horror in December 1907, he found $55 missing in his accounts, despite checking and double-checking. The firm's superintendent H.S. Dengler agreed to give him three weeks' time to raise the shortfall. Relatives offered to "help him out to the extent of $5 and $10 each," reported the Allentown Morning Call, "but he didn't see his way clear to make good and feared arrest." He moved out of the Lehrman house, and his widowed brother-in-law Richard Hawkins then agreed to house him for the time being. William, despondent, then decided to kill himself by shooting himself in the head with a .38 calibre revolver, using the bedcovers to mute the gunshot's sound. Continued the Morning Call, "Saturday morning he didn't appear for breakfast. One of the family of Richard Hawkins, with which he resided at No. 419 Liberty Street, who went to call him, found him lying in bed, his head in a pool of blood. He had fired a bullet into his head. Officers Schiffert and Gallagher called Dr. Andrews. He found the bullet had entered below the right ear and was embedded in the fatty part of the neck." The attempt had failed. Officials found a suicide note dated Dec. 6:
Beloved Friends--I feel that I must die in a day or two and I must write you a few lines. Winter is here and no work and no home for me. I did all I could, but it wont work. All hope is gone from me. I ask the good Lord to have mercy on my poor soul. God alone knows what I suffered. I would have altered it if I could I can't face Mrs. Lehman. She has been very good to me. There is a time for all of us to do things for the best. I only tried to do what I thought was right but I failed.
Despite a heavy loss of blood, William was treated at a hospital and released. It's not know if he settled his accounts with Baltimore Life. He lived for another decade with an address of 828 Turner Street in the later 1910s. He worked as a clerk in the mid-1910s. At the age of 60, on Dec. 14, 1917, he suffered a stroke while on Hamilton Street in Allentown. He was rushed to Allentown Hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival. Gertrude Devine, of 1028 Allen Street, provided details for the death certificate. Burial was in Union-West End Cemetery.
~ Daughter Malinda (Gaumer) Beisel ~
Daughter Malinda Gaumer (1834-1907) -- sometimes mis-identified as "Matilda" -- was born on Oct. 24, 1834.
In Nov. 1852, at the age of 18, she was wedded to Tilghman H. Beisel (Jan. 8, 1832-1921), the son of Lehigh County settlers Jacob and Sarah Beisel.
The couple bore six children, among the known names Levellar Beisel, George Beisel, Milton J. Beisel, Ida Wagner and Elizabeth M. "Lizzie" Bysher.
Tilghman earned a living over the years as a farm laborer brick worker. Circa 1860-1870, federal census records show the family residing on a farm in South Whitehall Township.
During the Civil War, he served in the Union Army as a member of the 176th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company B.
Then in July 1891, he was awarded a military pension for his wartime service. [Invalid App. #833.315 - Cert. #621.967] They lived in Guth's Station before moving, curing the 1870s, to a residence in Allentown. Tilghman was active with the local fire department and served as an officer. The Beisels celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in Nov. 1902 with a dinner at their home at 412 North Hall Street. Guests included their children and grandchildren as well as her sister Lucinda Cook of Royersford and brother James Alfred Gaumer and wife Allyne of Philadelphia.
Having contracted pulmonary tuberculosis, at the age of 72, she passed away on May 20, 1907. Interment was in Greenwood Cemetery in Allentown, with Rev. T.F. Herman preaching the funeral. Pallbearers included Henry Derhammer, David Mattern, Frank Seifert and Oscar J. Acker.
Tilghman remained in their home for the rest of his life. He marked his 80th birthday in January 1912. An article about the notable day was printed in the Allentown Democrat, which said that Tilghman was "one of the oldest Civil War veterans in this city, and since the close of the war has been a resident of this city. In politics Mr. Beisel is a staunch Democrat. For many years he has been a subscriber of the Allentown Democrat, which paper he still reads with great interest. Although old in years, Mr. Beisel still enjoys the best of health." Then at his 82nd birthday, in 1914, the Democrat published his photograph accompanying a longer article, saying that:
...many of his relatives, friends and comrades of the days of '61 called at his residence during the day, where they extended their heartiest greetings.... Being of the genuine old German stock, Mr. Beisel retains many of the traits and at the same time the grand physique of his ancestors. He has never known a bodily ill in his four score years of life and on only one occasion has had a physician attending him. When able to go to school he attended the little building used as a school house in the western section of the city. Leaving school at a tender age, he went to work in the brick yards, at that time located where the Neuweiler Brewing Company's new plant now stands. For a period of fifteen years he remained at the brick making trade. About this time the call for volunteers was sent out and he, with many others from the city, responded to the summons.... After serving one year Mr. Beisel, with the rest of the regiment, was honorably discharged. He returned to this city and again was engaged as a bricklayer for more than 30 years. In later years of life he followed various pursuits and about twelve years ago retired from active life.
At the age of 89 years, 10 months and 26 days, Tilghman suffered a stroke of apoplexy and was carried away by the Angel of Death on Dec. 4, 1921. Relatives, friends and Civil War veterans were invited to attend the funeral. Rev. R.M. Kern officiated, and interment was in Greenwood Cemetery. The informant for his death certificate was grandson Walter G. Bysher of the home. His obituary in the Allentown Morning Call said that he was survived by a brother Frank Beisel and sister Rebecca Miller.
Son Levellar Beisel (1854- ? ) was born in about 1854. His whereabouts in 1870 are not yet known, but he was not living with his parents that year. He was deceased by 1900.
Son George Beisel (1856- ? ) was born in about 1856. His whereabouts in 1870 are not yet known, but he was not living with his parents that year. He was deceased by 1900
Son Milton J. Beisel (1857-1922) was born on Oct. 9, 1857. He was united in the holy bonds of matrimony with Dora Keck (Jan. 30, 1857-1933), daughter of cigar maker John B. and Sarah Ann (LaFavor) Keck of Allentown. They produced two daughters, Sallie E. Beisel and Hannah L. Beisel. The family lived at 715 Chew Street. In about 1882, he joined the America Hose Company No. 2, comprising the city's fire department, and he remained involved for the remaining four decades of his life, working at the Central Fire and Police Station. In 1907, working as a motorman with the Lehigh Valley Transit Company, he changed jobs and went to work with the United States Express Company. Circa 1909, he began driving the Allentown city ambulance, initially a horse-drawn operation, with his first emergency call made to 431 Harrison Street. After some years, the form of transport was succeeded by a motor vehicle. The Allentown Morning Call once said that Milton "was well known throughout the city many years ago when he drove the horse-powered ambulance of bygone days. With the coming of the automobile, it was he who was chosen by the city to learn to operate the first motorized ambulance, a Kissel car. He was sent to Philadelphia at the time to receive instructions." The Beisels were members of the Salem Reformed Church, and he belonged to the Police and Firemen's Beneficial Union, the Queen City Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police and the Allen Camp of the Sons of Veterans (of the Civil War). At about the age of 64, in 1921, he was diagnosed with tuberculosis of the lungs. He then was given lighter duty as he tried to regain his health. He was admitted to the Homeopathic State Hospital in Allentown where he died on March 22, 1922. Funeral services were held in the family's residence, led by their pastor Rev. Dr. J.M.G. Darms. Burial was in West End Cemetery. Dora outlived her husband by 11 years and dwelled in the Merkel Apartments at 245 North Eighth Street. Burdened with hardening of the arteries, heart disease and pneumonia, she died at home on Nov. 5, 1933 at the age of 76. In an obituary, the Morning Call related her husband's pioneering ambulance work and named her surviving siblings as George Keck, Mrs. Morgan Beidler, Ida Baum and Mrs. H.L. Reichenbach
Daughter Ida Beisel (1859- ? ) was born in about 1859 in South Whitehall Township, Lehigh County. She married (?) Wagner ( ? - ? ). Her home in 1914 was in Philadelphia, when she was named in a newspaper feature story about her aged father. She is believed to have been deceased by 1921.
Daughter Elizabeth M. "Lizzie" Beisel (1862-1935) was born on June 5, 1862 in Guth's Station and moved into Allentown in her younger years. She wedded Gilbert Sherwood Bysher ( ? - ? ). The only son born to this union was Walter G. Bysher. Sherwood worked for years as a weaver. He was deceased by 1896. As a widow, Lizzie and their son boarded in the home of alderman Allen W. and Ella Haines, at 410 North Sixth Street in Allentown, where she supported herself as a housekeeper. They were members of St. Andrews Reformed and Evangelical Church at the corner of Ninth and Gordon Streets.She is known to have hosted euchre playing parties in the Haines home. In about 1927, Elizabeth became seriously ill and for 14 months she was a patient at Sacred Heart Hospital. She suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and was admitted to the Lehigh County Home, where she was "continually bedfast," said the Allentown Morning Call. She died at the age of 73, on Oct. 8, 1935. Interment was in Greenwood Cemetery
~ Daughter Lucinda (Gaumer) Cook ~
Daughter Lucinda Gaumer (1837-1909) was born on Sept. 4, 1837 in Lehigh County, PA.
She married William F. Cook Sr. (1833-1908).
They were the parents of Hannan "Anna" Arnold, Myra Elizabeth Ottinger, Ida Richards, Howard Wells Cook and William F. Cook Jr. The family grieved when son Howard died in 1869 at the age of 11 months, with burial in Oak Grove Cemetery in Parker Ford, Chester County.
The Cooks are known to have lived in Spring City, Chester County, PA in 1858, Philadelphia in 1861 and in Limerick, Montgomery County in 1870. While in Limerick, William supported the family through his labor at a local foundry. By 1880, the Cooks relocated to Royersford, Montgomery County, where William obtained work as a carpenter.
Lucinda is known to have attended the 1907 golden wedding anniversary dinner in Allentown for her sister and brother-in-law, Melinda and Tilghman Beisel.
Sadness shrouded the family when William died in 1908.
Circa 1909, Lucinda's address was 442 Walnut Street, Royersford. In April 1909, Lucinda suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and lingered for a little more than a month before death carried her away at age 71 on May 27, 1909. Burial was in the local Fernwood Cemetery. Her death certificate lists her parents as James Gaumer and Rosie Good -- rather than Moses D. Gaumer and Elizabeth Salome Guth -- so this connection needs to be more deeply researched and clarified.
Daughter Hannah "Anna" Cook (1858-1917) was born on Nov. 26, 1858 in Spring City, Chester County. She was joined in marital union with Edward S. Arnold ( ? - ? ). They bore a son, Paul Arnold. The family lived at 463 New Street on the south side of Bethlehem, Northampton County circa 1917. The family grieved when, suffering from heart and kidney disease, Hannah passed away at the age of 58 on July 30, 1917. An obituary was printed in the Allentown Morning Call.
Daughter Myra Elizabeth Cook (1861-1914) was born on July 11, 1861 in Philadelphia. She married Edwin Ottinger (1861-1928), son of Jacob and Catharine (Savage) Ottinger. The bore one known son, Lloyd Ottinger. Burdened with chronic kidney disease, Myra was felled by a cerebral hemorrhage at the age of 53. She died in their home at 418 King Street in Spring City, Chester County on Sept. 28, 1914. Burial was in Fernwood Cemetery in Royersford. Edwin outlived her by 14 years and succumbed to death in 1928.
Daughter Ida Cook (1865- ? ) was born in about 1865. She wedded (?) Richards ( ? - ? ). She dwelled in 1917 at 420 Walnut Street in Royersford and hosted the funeral service of her sister Hannah Arnold that year.
Son William F. Cook Jr. (1971- ? ) was born in about 1871.
~ Son James Alfred Gaumer ~
Son James Alfred Gaumer (1841-1907) was born on May 2, 1841 and was a boy when his mother died.
During the Civil War, on Aug. 15, 1862, he joined the Union Army and was placed in Company A of the 4th Pennsylvania Cavalry, also known as the 64th Pennsylvania Regiment. His cavalry unit saw action during the famed Battle of Gettysburg, and James' name appears on a prominent plaque at the Pennsylvania Monument on the field. He received an honorable discharge on June 15, 1864.
James married Allyne T. Swoyer (1848-1916), daughter of Daniel and Theresa (Albright) Schwoyer.
Five children were produced by this marriage -- Alverta G. Gaumer, Florence E. Gaumer, Linnie S. Gaumer, Eva V. Gaumer and Raymond D. Gaumer. Wave after wave of heartbreak swept over the family as each of their children died young -- Alverta in 1868, Florence (1870), Linnie (1871), Eva (on March 6, 1896, at age 22) and Raymond (1889, at age 8). All of the children rest together in Allentown's Fairview Cemetery.
In 1873, James began receiving a military pension as compensation for wartime injuries. [Invalid App. #184.021 - Cert. #153.714]
For three decades, James earned a living as a postal letter carrier in Philadelphia. Circa 1907, they resided at 2717 North 16th Street in Philadelphia. Controvery arose in the summer of 1900 when Philadelphia Postmaster Hicks was considering adding two trips to the local routes. James was named to a committee to organize a meeting with Hicks, and the postmaster later agreed to dropphis plans, with the story reported in the Philadelphia Inquirer.
For the last four years of his life, James suffered from an enlarged prostate, and also for the last three years from cystitis, under the care of Dr. I.G. Heilman. He died in Philadelphia on St. Patrick's Day 1907, at the age of 65 years, 10 months and 15 days. His remains were lowered into eternal repose in Fairview Cemetery in Allentown, following funeral services held in the cemetery chapel.
Within a month, Allyne successfully petitioned the federal government to receive the pension. [Widow App. #867.194 - Cert. #663.075] She remained in their North 16th Street home. She was afflicted with diabetes which led to gangrene of the foot. At the age of 68, she died in Philadelphia on Nov. 7, 1916. Her remains were transported to Allentown for burial. Moser E. Swoyer, of 217 North 11th Street in Allentown, was the informant for her official Pennsylvania certificate of death.
Daughter Eva V. Gaumer (1873-1896) was born in 1873. As a young unmarried woman, she lived in Philadelphia. Tragedy struck in the winter of 1896, when at the age of 22, she contracted consumption (tuberculosis) and died at home. Her body was brought to the residence of her grandfather Daniel Schwoyer, at 723 Linden Street in Allentown, for funeral services. Burial was in Fairview Cemetery, and an obituary was published in the Allentown Leader.
~ Son Franklin Lewis Gaumer ~
Son Franklin Lewis Gaumer (1844-1862) was born in about 1844 in Lehigh County.
As with his elder brother, he joined the Union Army during the Civil War. He was assigned to the 28th Pennsylvania Infantry.
While involved in a skirmish at Rectortown, Fauquier County, VA, on May 10, 1862, he was shot and badly wounded. He was carried to a farmhouse owned by the Woodward family, located about 1.3 miles west of town, on the north side of what today is Route 713. His wounds were fatal, and he died not long afterward.
His remains were laid to rest on the farm, next to the grave of Charles B. Wall of a Zouave regiment, about 400 yards east of the farmhouse. A crude marker was erected at Franklin's gravesite, reading as follows: "F. Cauwet, Co. E., 1834 Pvt., Aged 19 years, Died May 10, 1862." Over the years, the farm was known as "Locust Grove" and "Paradise."
After the war, as the bodies of thousands of Union dead were collected and consolidated in larger, national cemeteries, his remains were dis-interred and moved to a mass grave at Arlington National Cemetery. There, he rests for all time in Grave 11455, Section 13.
In 1937, a report about the Woodward farm cemetery was made by Francis B. Foster. No evidence exists to suggest that his grieving father filed to receive a military pension as compensation for the loss of his son.
~ Stepdaughter Matilda (Frankenfield) Beggs ~
Stepdaughter Matilda Frankenfield (1844-1933) was born on Aug. 20, 1844. At a young age she and her brother Franklin were taken into the Gaumer home in Lower Macungie Township and raised there to adulthood.
She joined the Gaumer family in relocating west after the end of the Civil War, when she would have been in her early 20s. When they first went to Wisconsin, in the Green Bay area, she met and married her husband Hugh Beggs (May 25, 1836-1927), an immigrant from Ireland who had entered the United States via Canada at the age of 29, in 1865. Their ceremony was held in Green Bay on July 3, 1866.
Matilda and Hugh produced a family of daughters, among them Sarah Jane Staley, Henrietta Minteer, Mary A. Meeks and Emma Murilla Flater. Their eldest daughter Sarah Jane was born in Wisconsin in 1867, but not long afterward, the family moved to Illinois.
When the federal census enumeration was made in 1870, the Beggses lived on a farm in Eliza, Mercer County, IL. During the decade of the 1870s, they moved to a farm in New Boston, Mercer County. The 1880 U.S. Census shows that Matilda's 62-year-old widowed mother, brother Wallace (age 24) and sister Emma (15) were in the household.
By 1892, they relocated to a farm in Goshen Township, Muscatine County, IA. Several neighbors planned a surprise party for Matilda at her birthday in August 1892. Reported the Muscatine Journal, "She received a handsome rocking chair as a birthday present from her four daughters. Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Gregg presented a handsome water set."
Then at Hugh's 58th birthday in May 1894, some 40 relatives and friends likewise held a surprise party. "His estimable wife being in the secret," said the Journal, "a bountiful supper was prepared to which all did ample justice. After supper, John Flater, in a few appropriate words, presented Mr. Beggs with a handsome easy chair, a present from his children, in which it is hoped he will take many hours of solid comfort. All were regailed with plenty of ice cream and cake before going to their respective homes and all felt that it was good to be there."
They remained in Goshen for a number of years and were there in 1910. Sadness cascaded over the family at the untimely death in 1908 of their married daughter Henrietta Minteer. The U.S. Census of 1910 shows that Hugh, retired, had his own income stream, perhaps by renting their farm to tenants. The couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in July 1926 with a party for 60 guests at the Rotary clubhouse at Staley's Lake, located three miles south of Atalissa, and were pictured in the Davenport Quad-City Times. The news story said that "Despite their advance age both are in excellent health and participated in the celebration with zeal."
At the age of 90, Hugh passed into eternity on Jan. 17, 1927. Interment was in the local Overman Cemetery in Atalissa.
Matilda lived for another six years. She was named in the June 1928 Journal obituary of her sister Sarah Josephine Jackson. She died at the age of 88 on March 1, 1933, with burial in Overman Cemetery.
Daughter Sarah Jane Beggs (1867-1957) was born on March 30, 1865 or 1867 in Wisconsin. The teenage Sarah made a home with her married uncle Frank Frankenfield in 1880 in Eliza, Mercer County, IL, the year when the U.S. Census was taken. On Dec. 16, 1886, when she was 19 years of age, she married Charles Staley ( ? - ? ), the son of Jacob and Catherine E. ( Keeler ) Staley. The nuptials took place in Wisconsin. Their union resulted in five children -- Archie Hugh Staley, Louis Frederick Staley, Floyd E. Staley, Theresa C. Hunter and Leota M. Staley. Their first home was in Illinois, remaining until about 1892. From there they relocated to Iowa, establishing a residence on a farm in Goshen Township, Muscatine County. Charles is profiled in Irving Berdine Richman's 1911 book, History of Muscatine County, Iowa, Vol. II, at which time he owned a tract of 80 acres. The profile reads: "Charles Staley came west with his parents at eight years of age and attended the district schools, where he attained the rudiments of an education, which has been of constant practical use to him in his business career. He remained with his parents until twenty-two years of age and then began farming upon his own account by renting land. At the end of four years he purchased in 1893 one hundred and twenty acres of land in Goshen township, and as time passed he added more land to his original holding until at the present time he is the owner of a beautiful farm of three hundred and eighty-six acres, all of which is under a high state of cultivation except that portion which he reserves for pasturage. He handles stock on a large scale and he is a good judge of animals, especially those of standard grades, he generally receives a satisfactory price for what he has to sell. No more prosperous farmer is to be found in the township than Mr. Staley... Mr. Staley has not given much time to politics and the allurements of office have never had for him any special attraction. He and his family, however, are interested in religious affairs and are active members of the Methodist church. By a life of practical industry he has won a good name which is more to be preferred than riches and at the same time has demonstrated that high character and success in business may go hand in hand."
Daughter Henrietta Etta "Ettie" Beggs (1869-1908) was born on May 28, 1869 in Petersville, Mercer County, IL. On June 26, 1889, when she was 20 years old, she wedded William L. Minteer (1866-1933), son of Joseph and Elizabeth (Teal) Minteer of Millersburg, IL. Six offspring were born to this union, among them Iva Florence "Ivy" Ramsden, Daisy Belle Gipple, Earnest Carroll Minteer, Hugh Estelle Minteer, Letha May Struble and Everett Lyle Minteer. Sadly, little Hugh passed away in infancy. The Minteers dwelled in Atalissa, IL and belonged to the Presbyterian church in the town of Hamlet. They are known to have hosted Henrietta's visiting parents at Thanksgiving 1902, at which time the parents first laid eyes on her baby daughter Letha. Henrietta contracted Bright's Disease, an illness of the kidneys, and endured the illness for four years. But there was no hope. She died on April Fool's Day 1908, at age 38 years, 10 months and three days, leaving behind a husband and four children between the ages of 18 and six. Her remains were lowered into eternal repose in Overman Cemetery in Atalissa, Muscatine County, with Rev. D. Brown officiating. An obituary in the Muscatine News-Tribune eulogized her as "a kind and loving mother, a devoted wife, daughter and sister.... [She] was a patient sufferer, enduring her distress with great courage and fortitude, always trusting in the Lord for the best. Her last sickness was of two weeks duration. Often during her last illness she said that she was ready and willing to go. Frequently repeating the precious promises of God as she lay upon her death bed. Her dying request to relatives and friends was 'I want you all to meet me in heave.' After this she fell quietly and peacefully into that sleep from which none ever wake to weep." After six years alone, he tied the knot a second time, on Feb. 7, 1914 with Ruth E. Burgess (1874-1953), with the nuptials occurring in Aledo, Mercer County, IL. The couple did not reproduce.
Daughter Mary A. Beggs (1871-1924) was born in 1871 in Illinois. At the age of 21, on June 28, 1892, she was united in wedlock with Benjamin Franklin Meeks (March 3, 1863-1942), son of William and Elizabeth Meeks of Parkersburg, Wood County, WV. The pair bore two known daughters, Retha Goldie Frost Kyle and Matilda Mull. Prior to marriage, at the age of 20, Benjamin migrated to Iowa. Circa 1905, they resided in Charles City, IA. At Christimastime 1905, Mary and the girls visited her parents in Iowa, with Benjamin traveling with a group of potential investors to Kansas and Oklahoma, examining possible land purchases. They eventually inherited their parents' farm in Muscatine County, IA. The couple were members of the First Baptist Church. Circa 1924, they moved into the town of Muscatine. Mary succumbed to the Grim Reaper of Death on Jan. 3, 1924 at the age of 52. Benjamin lived for another 18 years and owned a number of residential properties in Muscatine. His address in the early 1940s was 1324 Grand Avenue. At the age of 79, he died in Hershey Hospital on March 14, 1942. An obituary in the Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune said that funeral services were led by Rev. E.W. McMurray of Lincoln Boulevard Baptist Church, and that interment was held in Overman Cemetery near Atalissa. His pallbearers included T.R. Davis, Clifford Garrison, Tony Hunter, Joseph Jacobs, James Moylan and Guy Osborn. Music for the funeral was provided by singers Mrs. Walter Sabbath and Mrs. William Dittman, accompanied by organist Mrs. George Holliday, performing "No Night There" and "Lead Kindly Light."
Great-grandson Arol Wolf Meeks (1917- ? ) was born on May 6, 1917 in Atalissa, Muscatine County. He grew up in Muscatine and reputedly learned how to pilot aircraft. He stood 5 feet, 6 inches tall, weighed 150 lbs and had a medium build. He had brown eyes and hair and a ruddy complexion, and bore a tattoo on his left arm. But he frequently was in trouble with the law in the 1940s, '50s and early '60s for writing fraudulent checks and other civil violations. At times, he used the alias "Robert Abbott." He is known to have been married and served in the U.S. Army circa 1936-1938. He was imprisoned in the Army and sent to the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Governor's Island, NY to serve time. He further was incarcerated in San Quentin Prison circa December 1940. In April 1942, he was employed by the Russell Smith State Division of Forestry in San Bernardino, but by July was imprisoned in San Bernardino County Jail in California for violation of parole. While there, he made plans to escape with a cellmate and either steal or charter an airplane to get away. The attempt was foiled, and he told officials that he had backed out of the plan. In 1945, he was in Folsom Prison in Sacramento, CA. He was paroled in 1949 and claimed that his wife lived in Vacaville, CA. His whereabouts in 1953 were in Denver and Fairbanks, Alaska; in 1958 in Navarre, KS; and in 1962 in Kansas City and Las Vegas. At the age of 36, in the late winter of 1954, he rented an automobile in Glendale, CA, using a bad check, and drove some 14,000 miles over the next 37 days before arrest in Longmont, CO. Then at the age of 44, in May 1961, he filed a claim for a U.S. Patent, having invented an "aircraft tow bar" and assigning any rights to his mother. The application was granted in 1964. But in November 1962, he was found guilty of passing a false check in Fort Madison, IA and admitted to the men's penitentiary here. His final fate is not yet known.
Daughter Emma Murilla Beggs (1882-1976) was born on Christmas Eve 1882 in Joy, Mercer County, IL. As a teenager, in 1900, she lived with her parents in Goshen Township, Muscatine County, IA. Then at the age of 23, on Sept. 12, 1906, Emma was joined in matrimony with 32-year-old Granville Elisha Flater (March 24, 1874-1946), son of John W. and Anna Rebecca (Hoff) Flater of the township. The nuptials were held in the home of Emma's parents, in front of 62 guests, and joined together "two [of] Muscatine county's worthy and prominent young people," reported the Muscatine News-Tribune. Rev. E.A. Brinton officiated, while Florence Stephens played the wedding march. Said the News-Tribune, "The bride was attired in white chiffon taffeta and wore roses, while the bridesmaid appeared in pearl gray wood batiste and wore roses. The groom and groomsman were conventionally attired." They were the parents of three known sons, Harry "Herschel" Flater, John "Russell" Flater and Granville "Eldon" Flater Jr. Prior to marriage, Granville was active in the community, and his name frequently was printed in local newspapers in connection with his comings and goings. Among these was his work as secretary of the Sunday School of the Cedar Valley Methodist Episcopal Church. For decades, the couple made a home on a farm south of Atalissa, Goshen Township, Muscatine County. They were socially active and exchanged visits with family and friends, recorded in the gossip columns of Muscatine newspapers. Federal census records for 1910 and 1920 both show that Granville's widowed father, and hired man Edward W. Barnhart, resided under their roof. Circa 1922, Emma was elected vice chair of the Goshen chapter of the Muscatine County Farm Bureau. In 1925, Granville was elected superintendent of vegetables and fruits for the year's meeting of the Goshen Township Farmers Institute. The Flaters were drawn into controversy in 1926 when Granville was accused of having exerted undue influence on Thomas Cummins when the man was writing his last will and testament and bequeathed $3,000 to Emma and their sons. The case continued on for several years until it was dismissed by Judge W.R. Maines when the plaintiff, Jennie Clark, failed to appear for the trial. During the 1920s, after Granville's father had passed away, Emma's widowed uncle William H. Garmer came to live in the household, with the uncle dying in 1934. Granville then brought in a married couple as lodgers, Rollin E. and Lucille F. Hutton, formerly of Anderson County, KS. The Huttons are listed in the Flater dwelling in the 1940 federal census. Granville announced in April 1934 that he was running for a seat on the Muscatine County Board of Supervisors on the Democratic ticket. Then in 1939, he was elected as a voting delegate representing the county at the county agricultural planning committee conference in Fairfield. Sadly, Granville died in Iowa City's Mercy Hospital on Oct. 29, 1946. Emma outlived her husband by three decades. Toward the end of her life, Emma was admitted as a resident of Oakwood Care Center in Muscatine. There, she died at the age of 93 on Sept. 30, 1976. Her remains are at rest in Oak Ridge Cemetery in West Liberty, Muscatine County. An obituary ran in the Iowa City Press-Citizen, stating that her survivors included seven grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
~ Stepson Franklin Jacob "Frank" Frankenfield ~
Stepson Franklin Jacob "Frank" Frankenfield (1844-1917) was born on Dec. 5, 1844. At a young age he and his sister Matilda were taken into the Gaumer home in Lower Macungie Township and raised there to adulthood.
Frank went with his mother and stepfather to Wisconsin and Illinois in the latter half of the 1860s.
He was twice wed. In 1874, he married Mary J. Dennison (1847-1877).
Two children were borne of the first marriage, Hattie L. Wetherell and Mary Jane Fisher.
Sadness blanketed the family when Mary the mother died just three years into the marriage, in 1877.
The following year, in 1878, Frank was joined in wedlock with his second bride, C. Jane Berges (1854-1928), whose parents were German immigrants. They made a home in 1880 on a farm in Eliza, Mercer County, IL. That year, Frank's half-brother William Gaumer lived under their roof.
Six more known offspring were produced -- Mabel May Duffield, Lonnie Monroe Frankenfield, Emma E. Squier, Clara Etta Nash, Katherine E. "Katie" Sweet and Minnie Frankenfield.
Then in March 1889, the Frankenfields migrated to Iowa, settling on a farm in Floyd, Floyd County. Reported the Muscatine (IA) Journal, "Moving is still a feature of the day. Mr. Frankenfield moved his effects to Muscatine Thursday morning, from where he took a special car to the farm which he has engaged about 180 miles from here. Mrs. F., being sick at the time, has remained with her daughter, Mrs. Duffield, until Monday, when she, with the younger children, expects to join her husband and son." They moved between 1900-1910 to a farm near Charles City, Floyd County.
Franklin died in 1917. His remains were lowered into repose in Oakwood Cemetery in Floyd.
In December 1928, Jane suffered a broken leg, followed by a stroke. She died on the next-to-last day of 1928 in their home in Charles City. Her daughter Mabel Duffield, suffering from the flu, was unable to attend the funeral. News of Jane's death was published in the Davenport (IA) Daily Times. [Find-a-Grave]
Daughter Hattie L. Frankenfield (1875-1967) was born in 1875. On July 19, 1891, at the home of her parents, she married Harry D. Wetherell (1864-1941), also spelled "Wetheral." News of their nuptials was printed in the Muscatine News-Tribune, misspelling her maiden name "Frankenrider." The three known offspring born to this couple were Daisie Wetherell, Frank Wetherell and Elmo Wetherell. In 1892, the Wetherals lived in Petersville, IL and in August that year Hattie visited her parents and "helped cook for threshers," said the Muscatine Semi-Weekly News. Sadness cascaded over the family when one of their sons died of membranous croup on Oct. 10, 1897, with interment in Eliza Cemetery. The Wetherals relocated to the West Coast. Hattie lived in San Francisco in 1950 and eventually moved further north into Washington State, where she made a home in Everett. Hattie died at the age of 91 on July 11, 1967. Her remains were shipped back to Iowa for interment in Riverside Cemetery.
Daughter Mary Jane Frankenfield (1877-1968) was born on Oct. 21, 1877 in Eliza, Mercer County, IL. At the age of 20, on Dec. 15, 1897, she wedded Edward M. "Edd" Fisher (1868-1916). The couple resided in 1910 in Eliza, Mercer County, IL and in 1920 relocated to Joy, IA. They produced two sons -- Everett C. Fisher and Verdi Fisher. Mary Jane belonged to the Royal Neighbors of America and the Joy Presbyterian Church. She passed away at the age of 91, on Oct. 29, 1968, in the Mercer County Hospital in Aledo. An obituary was printed in the Muscatine Journal. Her remains were interred in Millersburg Cemetery, also known as Oak Ridge Cemetery in Mercer County.
Daughter Mabel May Frankenfield (1878-1949) was born in December 1878 in Eliza Township. On Aug. 11, 1897, when she was 19 years of age, she was united in holy matrimony with William N. Duffield (April 15, 1859-1948), the son of David Duffield. The couple produced two known sons -- Roy Duffield and Floyd N. Duffield. Near-tragedy befell the Duffields in September 1899 when their infant son Floyd "fell against a blue-flame oil stove last week and was badly burned," reported the Muscatine Journal. "[He] is improving." They dwelled in Eliza, Mercer County, IL, with William operating a general store in Petersville for several years. He then acquired a general store from William Beverlin in 1907, located two-and-a-half miles southeast of Eliza. He ran the store for five years and then in about 1912 sold it to Omar Jackson. During that period, he was an Eliza Township Supervisor and treasurer of the local school. The couple relocated to Aledo, Mercer County on new Year's Day 1914, and remained there for three decades. William served as Treasurer of Mercer County, retiring in 1918. With America's entry into World War I, the family worried when son Floyd enlisted in 123rd Field Artillery, Company B, but then was discharged for "lack of weight," said the Rock Island Argus. He got himself back into physical shape and re-enlisted in June 1917. But the family was plunged into deep grief when he contracted pneumonia at Camp Logan in Houston, TX and died in the base hospital on Nov. 26, 1917. His body was escorted to the local train station by his fellow artillerists and shipped back home on the International and Great Northern Railroad for burial in Aledo Cemetery. Rev. Dr. F.E. Shult officiated at the funeral, held in the Aledo First Methodist Episcopal Church. The news was widely published in newspapers in Houston, Little Rock, AR, Moline, IL and Shreveport, LA. William was elected again as county treasurer in November 1926, serving a term until 1930. Then in November 1930, as the Great Depression was fully gripping the nation, he was appointed by Illinois Governor Emmerson as Mercer County's representative on a committee to "cooperate with the state-wide commission on unemployment," reported the Moline Dispatch. He was appointed as a local probation officer in 1932. William was an active volunteer for the Methodist church. Then in 1942, as a trustee of the Farmers National Bank which had failed a decade earlier, took part in a sale of the bank's remaining assets. He died in Mercy Hospital in Davenport on Aug. 7, 1948. The headline obituary in the Argus noted that he had "served two terms as Mercer county treasurer and several terms as deputy treasurer." Rev. E.N. Wisely, of the family church, led the funeral service. The widowed Mabel moved into the home of her son Roy in Houston, TX. She died there on New Year's Eve 1949. Her remains were shipped back to Aledo for burial. Rev. E.N. Wisely officiated at the funeral. A notice of her death, printed in the Muscatine Journal, noted that Mr. and Mrs. James Duffield of Muscatine and Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Duffield attend the funeral service.
Son Lonnie Monroe Frankenfield (1881-1968) was born in 1881. As a 19-year-old, in 1900, he lived with his parents in Floyd, Floyd County, IA and provided labor on the family farm. He was married thrice. His first spouse was Elizabeth Marie Rolfes (1885-1916). They were the parents of Harley B. Frankenfield, Elizabeth Marie Mendenhall and Ruth Vanantwerp. Their home in 1916 was in rural Colwell. Heartache swept over the family when Elizabeth died in 1916, leaving behind three young children. Their daughter Elizabeth was taken in raised by a maiden aunt, Minnie Frankenfield. Lonnie's second bride was Lizzie Arndt (1876-1943), a lifetime resident of the Charles City community and the daughter of William and Amelia Arndt. They lived on a farm four-and-a-half miles west of Charles City. Suffering from heart problems, Lizzie died in Cedar Valley Hospital at the age of 67 on July 29, 1943. The Mason City (IA) Globe-Gazette published an obituary, which disclosed that Rev. C.D. James, of the Central Methodist Church, preached at the funeral. Burial followed at Riverside Cemetery. Mr. and Mrs. Richard Arndt are known to have traveled from their home in Ruthven to attend the funeral. After about 17 months of mourning, Lonnie married again to Gertrude H. Kellogg ( ? - ? ), daughter of Everett DeWitt and Myrtie (Bowers) Kellogg. He passed into eternity in 1968, with interment in Riverside Cemetery in Charles City. Gertrude died in a nursing home in Charles City, at the age of 72, on Feb. 11, 1971.
Daughter Emma E. Frankenfield (1884-1922) was born in Dec. 1884. She was joined in wedlock with Roy Willis Squier (April 24, 1884-1967). The two sons born to this union were Paul Revere Squier and Floyd C. Squier. The family resided on a farm in Orchard, IA. Sadly, Emma was burdened with poor health, and so the family moved back to Osage in September 1921 after selling the contents of their farm. The relocation did not produce the desired result, and she succumbed on April 19, 1922, at the untimely age of 37. Burial was in Osage Cemetery. Roy survived for another 45 years. He married again to Maude Lee Jenkins (1896-1982). From a previous marriage, she brought a daughter to the second union, Mrs. George Ready. The couple bore a son of their own, Dale R. Squier, born in 1929. Roy died unexpectedly at home in Osage at the age of 83 on Dec. 18, 1967. The Des Moines Tribune printed a brief notice of his death.
Daughter Clara Etta Frankenfield (1887-1981) was born on Jan. 12, 1887 in Mercer County, IL. In girlhood, she attended schools in the county and later, after a move to Iowa, in Floyd County. On Dec. 15, 1910, when she was 23 years of age, Clara married Allen C. Nash (March 28, 1884-1964), also of Floyd County. He had been a student at Iowa State Teachers College at Cedar Falls. The couple relocated in 1911 to Colorado, putting down roots on a farm near the town of Montrose. They remained put for the rest of their lives along Spring Creek Boulevard. Two children were born to the marriage - Dorothy Oswald and Vernon Nash. News articles in 1920 show that Allen raised milch cows on their ranch on the Spring Creek mesa, and tied a state record in June for production of milk and butterfat. "H.A. Lindgren, formerly agriculturalist at the local reclamation project, stated that the Nash herd was the best herd on the western slope," reported the Grand Junction (CO) Daily Sentinel. He served on the board of directors of the Western Lope Pure Bred Live Stock Association. In March 1923, also raising purebred Hampshire ewes, he made news when nine of the ewes gave birth, with six having triplets. "Two of these ewes were of quadruplets bornfive years ago," said the Montrose Press. "One has had four lambs at one time at the age of five. We believe this is a record." With the sheep industry growing, he was active circa 1930 in trying to form an association of Hampshire sheep breeders in the community. The family were members of the local Congregational Church. The Nashes hosted a visit in July 1952 from Clara's sisters Marie and Minnie from Mason City, IA. Allen died in his sleep on Sept. 26, 1964. Clara lived for another 17 years. At the age of 94, Clara died at home on Valentine's Day 1981. An obituary ran in the Daily Sentinel, saying that her survivors included five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Daughter Katherine E. "Katie" Frankenfield (1891-1915) was born in Aug. 1891. In 1910, living in Cedar Township, Floyd County, IA, she was employed as a school teacher, Katie wedded Ernst Matthew Sweet (Jan. 1, 1888-1934), son of Elmer E. and Susie Mae (Livingston) Sweet. Tragically, they were not destined for a long marriage. She died in 1915, at the age of only 24. Her remains were placed into eternal sleep in Oakwood Cemetery in Floyd, Floyd County.
Daughter Minnie Frankenfield (1893-1967) was born in March 1893. She never married. Minnie raised her brother Lonnie's daughter, Elizabeth Marie Mendenhall, who was born in 1916. She is believed to have served circa 1933 as a stenographer for the clerk of courts for the County of Floyd, IA. She worked there until 1941, when she relocated to Mason City, where she joined the law practice of Westfall and Laird. In 1948-1967, still in Mason City, IA, she was recording secretary of the Wesleyan Service Guild of the First Methodist Church. Death carried her away in 1967, at the age of 73 or 74. Burial was in Oakwood Cemetery in Floyd.
~ Daughter Sarah "Josephine" (Garmer) Jackson ~
Daughter Sarah "Josephine" Garmer (1852-1928) was born on Sept. 5, 1852 in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County. She relocated with her parents to Eliza, Mercer County, IL.
While in Petersburg, IL on Oct. 3, 1871, at the age of 19, she was united in marriage with 28-year-old George W. Jackson (Oct. 4, 1842-1892).
The couple's three children were Lewis Elmer Jackson, Ella Grace Jackson and Emma Elmira Jackson.
At the age of only 49, George was gathered in by death on July 3, 1892. The cause of his untimely passing is unknown. His remains repose in Seeley Township Cemetery in Guthrie County, IA.
Sarah survived her spouse by 36 years. In about 1898-1899, she moved into Muscatine, Muscatine County, IL, where she remained for the balance of her years of life. She was a longtime member of the First Methodist Episcopal Church. Her address in 1928 was Lake Park Boulevard.
Suffering from heart disease, which got worse in the early part of 1928, she passed away on June 19, 1928. Funeral services were held in the family church, officiated by Rev. E.A. Bentzinger. Burial was in Greenwood Cemetery in Muscatine, with an obituary published in the Muscatine Journal.
Son Lewis Elmer Jackson (1872-1943) was born on Aug. 21, 1872 in Mercer County, IL. In his early 20s, he and his parents and family put down roots in Muscatine County, IA and remained there for good. On Aug. 6, 1907, in the courtroom of Justice Coster in Muscatine County, he was joined in holy wedlock with 17-year-old Ollie B. Richardson (1890-1916), a native of Inland, NE and the daughter of Benjamin Richardson. In reporting on the wedding, the Muscatine Journal stated that the couple would "make their home on East Hill." The Jacksons were the parents of one daughter, Erma DePoister. Unfortunately, their marriage was troubled early on, and they separated on Nov. 5, 1908. Lewis then sued Ollie in January 1909 for "default," claiming she had had sexual relations with two other men during the time of their marriage. Two months later, in March 1909, they were divorced by order of Judge Jackson in District Court. Lewis's home in the early 1940s was along Lake Park Boulevard. Lewis died in Muscatine at the age of 71 on Dec. 16, 1943. An obituary in the Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune reported that burial was in the Greenwood Cemetery. After their divorce, Ollie moved to Topeka, KS. She contracted tuberculosis there and came back to Muscatine in late July 1916. Due to her "advanced tubercular condition," reported the Muscatine News-Tribune, she lived in a tent on the outskirts of the city. She died in the tent on Aug. 10, 1916. Burial was made in Klein Cemetery near Moscow, IA, with funeral services led by Rev. U.S. Smith of the First Methodist Church
Daughter Ella Grace Jackson ( ? - ? )
Daughter Emma Elmira Jackson (1884-1964) was born on Nov. 12, 1884 in Guthrie County, IA. She never married. Emma and her parents moved circa 1898-1899 to Muscatine, Muscatine County, IA, and she lived for 60-plus years until death. She was a member of the Jehovah's Witness Church. Her address in her latter years was 608 Lake Park Boulevard. As her health declined, she was admitted to Muscatine General Hospital, where she succumbed to death at the age of 79 on Aug. 4, 1964. An obituary appeared in the Muscatine Journal, stating that "Several cousins are the only surviving relatives." Marlin VanDolah officiated at the funeral service, with the remains placed into eternal repose in Greenwood Cemetery in Muscatine.
~ Son William Henry "Bill" Garmer ~
Son William Henry "Bill" Garmer (1854-1934) was born in about 1854 in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County, PA. He migrated to Wisconsin and thence to Illinois with his parents and family and in 1870.
At the age of 16, after the family had put down roots in Eliza, Mercer County, IL, he assisted his father on the family farm. He boarded in the home of his married half-brother Frank Frankenfield in 1880 in Eliza.
On Nov. 19, 1885, when he would have been 31 years of age, William was united in holy matrimony with 21-year-old Sarah E. Bailey (Jan. 1864-1910), a native of Illinois whose father was from Virginia. Their nuptials were held in Mercer County.
The Garmers produced three children, including Ortie Leo Garmer, Neta May Garmer and one other daughter who died young. Their sadness was compounded in 1896 when daughter Neta passed away at the age of only one.
The Garmers established a home in Iowa and were longtime farmers. When the federal census enumeration was made in 1900, they resided on a farm south of Muscatine in Eliot Township, Louisa County, IA. By 1910, they had moved to a farm in 76 Township in the county, "south of this city on the Burlington road," reported a newspaper.
Sarah in about 1906 began to suffer from a serious illness. In March 1909, she is known to have undergone surgery at Bellevue Hospital in Muscatine. She returned home and lingered for 15 months.
The Grim Reaper of Death cut away Sarah on June 18, 1910, in their home, at the untimely age of only 46. Her passing brought to a close their marriage which had endured for 26 years. Rev. Dr. J.N. Elliott, of the First Presbyterian Church, preached the sermon at the funeral, held in the family residence. Burial was in Keithsburg Cemetery. A prominent obituary in the Muscatine News-Tribune said that she "was well known both in this city and the vicinity" and that "During her illness of about four years Mrs. Garmer had been one of the most patient of sufferers." The obituary also named her surviving siblings: John Bailey and Will Bailey of Huron, IA; George Bailey of Monmouth, IL; and Mrs. J.D. Day of Waterloo, IA.
William lived for another nearly quarter of a century as a widower. The United States Census of 1920 shows him living alone in Eliza at the age of 67, as a next-door neighbor to John and Indiana Woodward and Arthur and Nancy McDonald. That year, he continued to make a living as a farmer.
He generated sensational news coverage in September 1924 when he sued E.H. Irwin for assault and battery, claiming that he had been "struck by Irwin over the head with a pitchfork at a farm sale last November," reported the Muscatine Journal. "Garmer was in the hospital in Muscatine for a short time and many witnesses have been called on the stand." William triumphed in his case but, instead of the $10,000 in damages he was seeking, was awarded the sum of just $75.
In June 1928, he was named in the Journal obituary of his sister Sarah Josephine Jackson, and at the time was in Atalissa, Muscatine County. William's whereabouts in 1930 were in the home of his married niece Emma (Beggs) Flater and her husband Granville in Atalissa..
He is known to have spent his last year(s) in East Moline, Rock Island County, IL. There, he was gathered in by the Angel of Death at the age of 80 on Dec. 20, 1934. No obituary is known to have been published in the Rock Island or Muscatine newspapers. His remains were transported to Keithsburg, Mercer County for burial in Greenmound Cemetery. The couple is at rest in unmarked graves in the Bailey family plot.
Son Ortie Leo "Slim" Garmer (1885-1944) was born on Oct. 16, 1885 in Iowa. He grew up on his parents' farm in Eliot, Louisa County, IA and then later in 76 Township, Muscatine County, IA. As a young man, his social and personal activities were mentioned in the gossip columns of the Muscatine (IA) Journal and News-Tribune. He was married in about 1910 to Florence (1891- ? ). The couple produced a family of known children -- Edith M. Kelly, William Garmer, Florence M. Cowgill and Bernice Jacobson. They first dwelled in Illinois, where their eldest child was born later that year. From there they moved to Iowa, where the next two offspring came into the world circa 1913-1915. Sometime between 1915 and 1920 they made the momentous decision to migrate again, into Montana. Their home as shown in the 1920 federal census was Helena, Lewis and Clark County, MT, with Ortie earning a living as a common laborer. He is known to have purchased a town lot, at 1029 Fifth Street in Helena, in Oct. 1920. The Garmers divorced during the decade of the 1920s, and Florence later remarried to Emil P. Zoeller of Helena. Census records for 1930 show Ortie, age 44, working as a cook in a cafe in Bozeman, Gallatin County, MT, while daughter Florence, age 15, was an inmate in the House of the Good Shepherd in Lewis and Clark County. Ortie moved in the 1930s to Butte, MT, where he continued cafe work in a rich region with iron ore and manganese mines. Said the Helena Independent Record, "He engaged in the cafe business first in Bozeman and later in Belgrade." He married a second time on New Year's Day 1939, to beauty shop owner Ona (Rennick) Walden (Oct. 21, 1898-1974), with the nuptials taking place in Livingston, MT, and the news reported in the Montana Standard. A native of St. Louis, and the daughter of Lee and Emma Rennick, she came to Montana's Bearpaw Mountains in 1914 and in 1937 had moved to the Gallatin Valley. Having been married previously, Ona brought a daughter to the union, Dorothy (Walden) Warnke. She was socially active and hosted meetings of the Order of Eastern Star in their home. They moved temporarily to Three Forks, where he was in the process of opening his own cafe under the name of "Slim's." They returned to Butte in the fall of 1940. He operated Slim's for the balance of his life, just four short years. Ortie died in a Bozeman hospital at the age of 59 on Aug. 8, 1944. The Independent Record reported that he had been "born in Iowa and came west as a young man." Funeral services were held in Bozeman. The widowed Ona outlived her spouse by three decades. She sold the cafe at Three Forks and migrated to California in 1950. For two decades, she operated a motel property in San Clemente. After retirement in 1970, she established a home in Seal Beach, CA. While on a visit to her daughter Dorothy's home in Helena in late summer 1974, she became seriously ill and was admitted to Columbus Hospital in Great Falls. She died there at the age of 75 on Sept. 7, 1974. Following funeral services led by Rev. William Burkhardt, her remains were shipped to California for cremation at Pacific View Memorial Park at Newport Breach. An obituary was printed in the Independent Record.
Daughter Neta May Garmer ( ? - ? )
~ Son Wallace Moses "Wiley" Garmer ~
Son Wallace Moses "Wiley" Garmer (1855-1925) was born on Oct. 22, 1855 in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County. When he was in his early teens, Wallace joined his parents and siblings in a migration westward. They first traveled to Wisconsin, living in the Green Bay community, and then in 1869 pushed south to Illinois and settled on a farm in Eliza, Mercer County, where Wallace remained for the balance of his life.
Wallace was enumerated on the 1880 United States Census, living with his widowed mother and younger sister Emma in the home of his married step-sister Matilda Beggs in New Boston, Mercer County.
On Jan. 5, 1882, the 26-year-old Wallace was united in holy matrimony with 19-year-old Eliza Belle Minteer (Oct. 8, 1862-1939), daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth (Peal) Minteer. She had grown up on a farm south of the town of Joy, Mercer County. As a young woman, prior to marriage, Eliza taught at the Hazel Dell School near Joy for two years.
hey produced these known offspring -- Lilly May Lutz, Mary Bessie Reynolds, Fred Lee Garmer and Joseph Leslie Garmer. They bore one other child who sadly died young, prior to the year 1900.
The Garmers made a home on farms in Mercer County, IL, "with the exception of a year spent in Kansas," reported the Rock Island (IL) Argus. When the 1900 federal census enumeration was made, Eliza's 23-year-old widowed brother Charlie lived in their home and worked as a servant. Then in 1910, the U.S. Census shows that newly married daughter Bessie was in the parents' household but without her husband. The couple retired during the decade of the 1910s and were empty-nesters in 1920, as demonstrated by the census.
Sadly, Wallace died of a stroke on the Fourth of July 1925, at the age of 69, in Eliza. Funeral services were conducted in the Union Church in Aledo, with Elder George David, of the Latter Day Saints Church in Galesburg, officiating. Burial was in Eliza Creek Cemetery. An obituary in the Argus noted that he had been a resident of the county for more than 50 years.
Eliza Belle lived on as a widow for another 14 years. In August 1930, she is known to have traveled with her sons to attend the annual Minteer family reunion, held at Sugar Grove Park north of Aledo, among 130 relatives who gathered that day.
When she was 76 years of age, she suffered a massive stroke and, a day later, was gathered in by the Grim Reaper of Death on Sept. 8, 1939. An obituary in the Argus -- which misspelled the family name as "Garner" -- noted that she was survived by six grandchildren. Funeral services were held in the Union Church, with six of her nephews serving in the role of pallbearers. She rests with her husband in Eliza Creek Cemetery.
Daughter Lilly May Garmer (1885-1946) was born on March 1, 1885 in Mercer County. In 1902, she wedded her first cousin, Harry Light Lutz (1875-1968), the son of Leroy L. and Rosa Ann (Garmer) Lutz. The couple's two known sons were Percy Wilvern Lutz and Paul Lutz. In 1939, they lived in Gladstone, Henderson County, IL. Lilly May died in Rock Island County, IL at the age of 61 on March 15, 1946. Her remains are at rest in Eliza Creek Cemetery in Mercer County. After Lilly's passing, Harry lived for another 22 years. In February 1953, he placed an advertisement in the Rock Island Argus, seeking to rent a 10-room house near Millersburg. He wrote that "All modern except hot water. Stoker heat. On school bus route. Couple with small family or an elderly couple preferred."
Daughter Mary "Bessie" Garmer (1888-1960) was born in 1888. In about 1910, she married Raphael Irwin Reynolds (Oct. 7, 1888-1980). They dwelled in 1939 in Lake City, IA. She passed into eternity in 1960. Burial was in Callaway Memorial Gardens and Mausoleum in Fulton, Callaway County, MO. Raphael survived another two decades. On July 3, 1962, he married a second time to Dixie Opal Ebersole (1906-2002). Raphael died on June 28, 1980.
Son Fred Lee Garmer (1891-1952) was born on Feb. 5, 1891 in Mercer County. He grew up on the family farm and, in 1910, provided farming labor there. On April 23, 1919, he wedded Della R. Bartlet ( ? - ? ), also of Eliza. The ceremony was held at the Baptist Church parsonage in Aledo, IL, officiated by Rev. E.T. Potter. Her siblings Ralph Bartlet and Jessie Bartlet were witnesses, and news of the wedding was published in the Rock Island Argus. Two known daughters were born to this union -- Elva Marie Marshall and Pauline Ruth Wedekind. They established a home in New Boston, Mercer County. Fred passed away three days after Christmas 1952 in Muscatine, Muscatine County. Interment was in Greenwood Cemetery in Muscatine.
Son Joseph Leslie Garmer (1896-1972) was born on Feb. 22, 1896 in Mercer County. At the age of 14, in 1910, he worked on the family farm. Joseph served in the U.S. Army during World War I. After the war, on Nov. 12, 1919, he wedded Rachel Lingafelter (Nov. 1, 1901-1999), daughter of Wilburn and Ellen (Welch) Lingafelter of Millersburg Township, Mercer County. The couple produced these known offspring -- Helen E. Bopp and Alan Garmer -- and resided on a farm in Joy, Mercer County. Rachel had been educated at the Prouty School and actively helped Joseph operate their farm. The family were members of the St. Catherines congregation, and Rachel belonged to the Royal Neighbors of America (for more than five decades), Eliza American Legion Auxiliary and Neighborhood Club. She also liked to crochet and quilt. At the age of 76, on June 29, 1972, he died in Galesburg, Knox County, IL. His remains were lowered into repose in Eliza Creek Cemetery in Mercer County. In Moline Dispatch obituary, the family asked that any memorial donations be made to the Mental Health Association. The widowed Rachel outlived her spouse by more than a quarter of a century and maintained a home in Aledo. At her 80th birthday in 1991, and again at her 96th birthday in 1997, she was featured in articles in the Dispatch. She died at the age of 97, on May 28, 1999, in Mercer County Nursing Home. Funeral services were held at St. Catherines Catholid Church of Aledo, with Rev. G.J. Plunkett officiating.
~ Daughter Roseann (Garmer) Lutz ~
Daughter Roseann "Rosa" Garmer (1858-1914) was born on Dec. 6, 1857 in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County. As a child she migrated to Illinois with her parents and siblings, settling in Eliza, Mercer County.
At the age of only 14, on June 8, 1873, she was joined in holy matrimony with 23-year-old Leroy L. Lutz (May 16, 1850-1926), with the wedding held in Mercer County.
The children born to this union were Roy Lutz, Harry Light Lutz, Myrtle Lutz, Convers Laurence Lutz, Bertha Ann Burns, Luella May Keck, Maud E. Retherford and Jesse Earl Lutz. Grief enveloped the family when second-born daughter Myrtle died in infancy in 1876. Son Roy also died young.
The couple made a home in Arborville, NE circa 1882 when their daughter Luella was born.
Roseann died at the age of 56, on May 26, 1914, in Bloomington, Muscatine County, with burial in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Mercer County.
Leroy survived for another dozen years. He passed into eternity on Sept. 20, 1926.
Son Harry Light Lutz (1875–1968) was born in 1875. He wedded a first cousin, Lilly May Garmer (1885-1946), daughter of Wallace Moses and Eliza Belle (Minteer) Garmer. They made a home in Gladstone, IL. See their biography elsewhere on this page.
Son Convers Laurence Lutz (1877–1957) was born on Aug. 28, 1877 in Mercer County, IL. His first name has been misspelled as "Converse" and "Covers" over the years. At the age of 17, he made news when he worked on the farm of Philip Vernon and picked 100 bushels of corn in one day. Said the Muscatine News-Tribune, the result was "pretty good for a boy of his age." During the Spanish-American War and Philippine Insurrection, he served in the U.S. Army and was stationed at Camp Dewey. He sent a letter home, dated Aug. 8, 1898, which was printed in the Muscatine Journal. He wrote:
We had a nice trip across the ocean we were thirty-five days coming and it got tiresome before we landed. We are in camp within four miles of Manila. Our breastworks are within about three-quarters of a mile of the stone fortifications around the town. But they have got out-posts within one hundred yards of ours and we have a scrap every night. We had the first battle on the night of July 31. My regiment was in the breastworks in the morning when they opened fire on us and we run two canons in and mounted them behind the breastworks. They soon quit firing and we did not return the fire. We were relieved at ten o'clock by the Tenth Pennsylvania and camp back to camp tired and hungry. We had been out twenty-four hours without any sleep in the rain and worked all the time. We went to bed early and were soon sound asleep. About ten o'clock we were awakened by the worst roaring you ever heart, and before we were dressed the bugle sounded all in line and with a yell that could have been heard for a mile the boys got their guns and in five minutes the regiment was in line and waiting for orders. But alas, we stood in the rain about an hour, then were marhced back to camp and went to bed expecting to have to get up any minute. There were seven of the Pennsylvania boys died in all and about fifteen wounded. They will get all right. The Spaniards lost 365 men. One of the brigadier generals was killed.
Convers returned home from Manila in September 1899 and was given a reception in the Modern Woodmen of America Hall in Eliza. He resided at the time in New Boston, IL. On March 25, 1902, he was joined in marriage with Delpha M. Pratt ( ? -1948). Their wedding was held in the parsonage of the First Methodist Episcopal Church, led by Rev. Dr. Stafford. Said the Muscatine News-Tribune, the newlyweds "are favorably known by a large circle of friends." The couple went on to bear a daughter, Leona Biery, and a son, Lawrence Lutz.. They lived in Muscatine and were members of the Park Avenue Methodist Church. Convers belonged to the Kemble Post of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Sadly, Delpha died on May 24, 1948, bringing to a close their union which had endured for 46 years. On Aug. 6, 1949, he married a second time to Eva Allen (Stevens) Price (April 4, 1890-1966), daughter of Charles and Flora (Cooper) Stevens. She had been wed once before, to Harry C. Price ( ? - ? ). The couple lived at 112 Sheridan Street and had eight years together before death cut them apart. Convers was ill during the past two years of his life. He died on July 8, 1957, at the age of 79. An obituary in the Muscatine Journal said that he "had been a life resident of the Muscatine community." Eva outlived her second husband by nine years. She was socially active and belonged to the Women of the Moose, Pocahontas lodge, Pythian Sisters, VFW Auxiliary and American Legion Auxiliary. She died in Mercy Hospital in Davenport, IA on July 16, 1966. An obituary in the Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune said that she was survived by three nieces. Her remains were placed into repose in Greenwood Cemetery.
Daughter Bertha Ann Lutz (1879–1965) was joined in marriage with (?) Burns. She lived in Joy, IL in 1939 and in Mercer County in 1957.
Daughter Luella May Lutz (1882–1939) was born on Feb. 20, 1882 in Arborville, NE. When she was 17 years of age, in Aug. 1899, she married Jesse Keck ( ? -1907), with the ceremony held in Joy. He brought two daughters to the union, Edna Hurron and Nota Finch. Their marriage lasted just eight years until Jesse was cut away by the Grim Reaper of Death in about 1907. Luella lived on as a widow for another 32 years and dwelled in Buffalo Prairie, IL. She was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints for four decades. With her health in decline, she was admitted to a hospital in Moline, where she succumbed at the age of 57 on Aug. 26, 1939. An obituary in the Rock Island Argus reported that Rev. Lee Allen of Muscatine preached the funeral sermon, with her pallbearers named as Fred Garner, Joe Garner, Leo Retherford, Ledru Burns, Paul Lutz and Percy Lutz.
Daughter Maud E. Lutz (1883–1971) wedded Frank Retherford ( ? - ? ). Her home in 1939-1957 was in Eliza, Mercer County.
Son Jesse "Earl" Lutz (1891–1962) was born on Feb. 28, 1891 in Stromburg, NE but grew up and lived in Muscatine, IA. He was twice married. On New Year's Day 1910, he first wedded Catherine Flood ( ? - ? ). Their wedding was held in Muscatine. Their offspring are believed to have been Earl Lutz, Mrs. William B. Johnson, Mrs. Emmett Weiker Sr., Mrs. Elmer Wrage, Mrs. Carl Westerman and a son who died young. Then on June 20, 1933, at the age of 42, he was joined in marriage with Eva Sodders ( ? - ? ). Their address was 1604 Willow Street. He suffered a heart attack and was gathered in by the Angel of Death in Muscatine General Hospital, at the age of 71, on May 25, 1962. He was survived, said the Muscatine Journal, by 14 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Rev. Emmett Barnes preached the funeral service, with burial following in Greenwood Cemetery.
~ Daughter Emma "Caroline" (Garmer) Boyle ~
Daughter Emma "Caroline" Garmer (1865-1923) was born in October 1864 or 1865 in Lower Macungie Township, Lehigh County, PA. She was a young girl when she moved to Illinois with her family and put down roots on a farm in Eliza, Mercer County.
After the death of her father, Emma and her mother and older brother Wallace went to live in New Boston, Mercer County, with Emma's married half-sister, Matilda Beggs.
On Jan. 25, 1888, when she was age 23, Emma married James Frank Boyle (Feb. 1863- ? ). Their wedding was held in Caroline's home county.
The couple produced four children -- Effie Alfreda Sanford, Bessie May Knapp, Dora Fern Hanrahan and Harley Francis Boyle. Their eldest daughter was born in Mercer County in 1889, and the second and third born in Thayer County, NE in 1891-1892.
They moved back to Eliza, where their fourth and final child was born in the town of Joy in 1900. The federal census enumeration of 1900 shows the family residing in Eliza, with James working as a day laborer, and the census-taker spelling the family surname as "Boiles." That year, local school teacher Ada Adams, age 25, boarded in their household.
The family relocated between 1900 and 1910 to a farm in New Boston, Mercer County. The 1910 census-taker wrote that James' occupation was "Farmer - home farm" after first writing and then scratching out "Laborer - job work."
Then by 1920, the Boyles shared a New Boston Township residence with their married daughter and son-in-law, Dora and Louis J. Hanrahan. That year, their married daughter and son-in-law Effie and Fred Sanford lived next door.
At the age of 58, Emma passed into eternity on Aug. 10, 1923 in Mercer County. Her remains were lowered under the sod to rest for all time in Eliza Creek Cemetery.
The widowed James made his way to Arkansas. There, he died and is said to have been interred in a wooden coffin. For years, Emma's grave was unmarked. But in the spring of 2018, a small, graceful stone was placed at the site by cousin researcher Stan Garmer.
Daughter Effie Alfeda "Allie" Boyle (1889-1927) was born on Feb. 17, 1889 in Millersburg Township, Mercer County, IL. Effie was single and living with her parents in 1910, when she was age 21. She married Fred L. Sanford (1886- ? ). They were the parents of Frank Sanford, Emma Sanford and Dora MacDonald. They first made a home in Illinois, but by 1916-1917 had relocated to Arkansas, where their daughter Dora was born. They returned to Mercer County. When the federal census enumeration was made in 1920, the Sanfords lived next door to Effie's parents and married sister Dora Hanrahan in New Boston Township. Effie died at the age of 38, on Dec. 13, 1927, in Oakland, Alameda County, CA. Her remains are in repose in Oakland's Evergreen Cemetery. Fred continued living in Oakland as a widower, at the address of 3955 Magee Avenue in 1934 and at 913 Central Avenue in Alameda in 1941. His name was in the news in August 1934 when his daughter Dora eloped with Alvin G. MacDonald. Fred was injured in early November 1941 accident when the East Bay Transit bus on which he was riding collided with another bus on the Bay Bridge during a heavy fog. Said the Oakland Tribune, "A terrific collision of three commuter busses, two heavy trucks and a passenger automobile today sent a score of persons from the fog-shrouded lower deck of the Bay Bridge to hospitals on both sides of the bay.... The accident happened at the Oakland end of the Yerba Buena Island tunnel when traffic stopped suddenly in a particularly thick fog bank." He was treated at Berkeley Hospital and pictured in a photo collage in the Tribune.
Daughter Bessie May Boyle (1891-1936) was born on Jan. 23, 1891 in Hubbell, Thayer County, NE. As a girl she migrated to her parents' home region of Mercer County, IL. She was joined in wedlock in 1909 with Loren Knapp (1878-1969). The couple bore four known sons -- Francis H. Knapp, Kenneth Knapp, Wallace Loren Knapp and Ivan A. Knapp. The Knapps were enumerated in the U.S. Census of 1910 as farmers, living in New Boston, Mercer County, with the census-taker spelling their surname "Knupp." During the decade of the 1910s, they moved to Millersburg, Mercer County, where in 1920 Loren earned income as a day laborer. The Knapps relocated again during the 1920s to Monmouth, Warren County, IL. There, Loren continued his work as a laborer providing a day's work. Sadly, when she was 45 years of age, on Oct. 21, 1936, Bessie May succumbed to death in Monmouth. Burial was in Eliza Creek Cemetery. Loren outlived his bride by 33 years. He joined her in death, at the age of 95, on Aug. 18, 1969. His remains were interred in Biggsville Cemetery in Henderson County, IL
Daughter Dora Fern Boyle (1892-1934) was born on Sept. 13, 1892 in Hubbell, Thayer County, NE. She moved to Eliza, Mercer County, IL as a child. When she was age 17, in 1910, she lived with her parents in New Boston, Mercer County. Circa 1915, she dwelled in Filmore, IA. In the fall of 1915, she was united in holy matrimony with Louis J. Hanrahan (1880- ? ), a native of Iowa whose parents were Canadians. The bride was a dozen years younger than the groom. News of their marriage license application was published in the Rock Island Argus. The pair did not reproduce. In 1920, living on a farm in New Boston, Mercer County, they provided a home for Dora's parents. Circa 1930, when the United States Census again was taken, they were in a home on West Sixth Avenue in Monmouth, Warren County, IL, with Louis working as a road laborer and Dora's namesake niece Dora Sanford and boarder William Robinson living under their roof. Dora Fern was cut down by the Grim Reaper, at the age of 41, on Aug. 10, 1934. Rev. J.W. Beam of Alexis, IL officiated at the funeral service, with Mr. and Mrs. W.V. Holmes, Mrs. J.W. Beam and Lena Fifield providing musical selections. Pallbearers were Lester Smith, Ralph Lukens, Lester Christman, Harry Buffum, Donovan Highes and Henry Blevius. Burial was in Eliza Creek Cemetery in Mercer County, with an obituary appearing in the Argus. Her grave is not thought to be marked.
Son Harley Francis Boyle (1900-1970) was born on May 5, 1900 in Joy, Mercer County, IL, after his parents had returned from several years of living in Nebraska. Harley served in the U.S. Army during World War I. He wedded Geneva ( ? - ? ). Seven children were born to this union, all sons but one -- Ida Roselle, James Kaiser, Howard Boyle, Joe Boyle, Norman Boyle, Douglas Boyle and Robert Boyle. Harley earned a living laboring as a blacksmith. At some point they relocated to Texas, making a home for years Alice, Jim Wells County. As his health failed, Harley became a resident of a nursing home in San Antonio, while Geneva went to live with or near their son Norman in Yates Center, KS. There, he died at the age of 70 on Aug. 26, 1970. Interment was in Alice Cemetery. An obituary noted that his survivors included 25 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.