Tombstone Tuesday – Marlin L. Hess

Marlin Lawrence Hess 12 May 1944 - 1 Jan 1980

Marlin Lawrence Hess
12 May 1944 – 1 Jan 1980

 

The 99th anniversary of Marlin L. Hess’ birth was two days ago so I thought his marker would be appropriate for this week’s Tombstone Tuesday.  Marlin was born in Shamokin, PA to George Hess and Carrie Alice Lynn.  Marlin spent at least half of his life living in Shamokin before moving to Bristol, PA where he passed away.  Marlin is buried at Sunset Memorial park in Feasterville-Trevose.

Tombstone Tuesday is also an Ancestor’s Anniversary – Wilfred Haas

Grave marker of Wilfred and Ruth (Wintrode) Haas

Grave marker of Wilfred and Ruth (Wintrode) Haas

Wilfred Haas was born to Wallace Henry Haas and Mabel (Jones) Haas on June 27, 1906 at 2649 North 5th Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Wilfred’s father was born in the United States while his mother was born in England (enter English into a line that I have spent 30-some years thinking was German-Austrian)

 

On December 26, 1927, Wilfred married Ruth Magdalene Wintrode.  Wilfred and Ruth had five children, two sons and three daughters.

 

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Wilfred continued to live in North Philly until 1942 when he and his family moved to Bensalem, Pennsylvania.

 

Wilfred died on April 30, 1990 (23 years ago today) and is buried in Feasterville-Trevose, Pennsylvania at Sunset Memorial Park block N, lot 799, grave 1.  Stop buy to visit him and Ruth, there is a nice and peaceful view from their lot.

Tombstone Tuesday – Catherine I. Nahodil Johnson

Catherine I Johnson

Catherine I. Nahodil was born in Shamokin, PA in 1915.  The name of her parents have not been confirmed at this time but it is believed that she was the daughter of either Frederick or Julia Nahodil.

Catherine was raised by her grandparents, Rudolf and Rosamond Nahodil, and was listed as Rosamond’s adopted daughter in 1930.  Rudolf passed away in 1929 and when Rosamond died in 1939, Catherine was still living at home.

The 1940 U. S. Federal Census shows that Rudolf and Rosamond’s daughter Julia (Nahodil) Snyder has now moved into the home that Rosamond and Catherine shared and Catherine is now listed as Julia’s daughter.

Catherine married William M. Johnson in 1940, after the census take recorded.  Catherine and William had lived a block apart on Franklin Street for at least the previous five years.

The plastic marker show in the image above is all that marks the location of Catherine’s cremains.

Tombstone Tuesday: Weimer Jonas Wetzel and Iona Mary Conrad

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Christmas day was especially exciting in 1880 for the Wetzel household as presents were not the only addition in the house this day.  The Christmas birth of Weimer Jonas Wetzel was an exceptional present for Henry and Catherine (Kissinger) Wetzel and their four children.  Weimer was born in the family’s Trevorton, Pennsylvania home.

 

Not only was Weimer’s birthday easy to remember but so was his wedding anniversary.  On July 4, 1904 he married Iona Mary Conrad at Zion’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Trevorton.  Iona Mary was born in Trevorton on March October 12, 1881 to parents Frank and Harriet (Miller) Conrad.

 

Through his life, Weimer was employed by Philadelphia and Reading Coal & Iron Company as a carpenter in the local colliery.

 

Weimer passed away on the morning of February 28, 1933 at the couple’s Coal Street home in Trevorton after battling sarcoma of the abdomen wall for the previous six months.  The 80th anniversary of his death is in two days.  Iona passed away in Sunbury on Christmas Eve of 1952.  Weimer and Iona are buried together in Northumberland Memorial Park, Stonington.

Northumberland Memorial Park - View from Weimer and Iona's grave.

Northumberland Memorial Park – View from Weimer and Iona’s grave.

Tombstone Tuesday: Claimed by Influenza Epidemic

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Wilbert L. Strausser was born on April 23, 1902 to George and Minnie (Derk) Strausser.  Almost nothing is known about Wilbert, including his place of birth which is likely Columbia or Northumberland County.  The facts that are known are that he and his family lived in Coal Township in 1910, he died from Influenza on 14 October 1918, and he was laid to rest in Trevorton’s Greenwood Cemetery on 16 October 1918.

 

Wilbert spent 10 days fighting this deadly virus that wreaked havoc on the area and would claim the lives of more than 600,000 of his fellow Americans during 1918-1919.

Tombstone Tuesday: Death befalls the Derrick children

Four of the Derrick (Derk) children died within 10 days.

Four of the Derrick (Derk) children died within 10 days.

1888 was a sad year for Benjamin and Alice Derrick (Derk) as they buried all four of their children within ten days.  The couple’s fifth child was born right in the middle of this tragedy and it is a miracle she did not meet the same fate.

 

What killed these children?  Cholera, Typhoid, Scarlet Fever, or possibly Yellow Fever?  1888 saw an outbreak of Small Pox in Pennsylvania; was this the cause of so much loss?

 

Between 1881 and 1906, the Derrick family would have thirteen children born with seven surviving to adulthood.  The four children here are buried with their parents and a number of the siblings at the Lutheran Cemetery in Trevorton.

Tombstone Tuesday: Carrie Agnes Wetzel

Carrie Agnes WetzelLutheran Cemetery; Trevorton, Pennsylvania

Carrie Agnes Wetzel
Lutheran Cemetery; Trevorton, Pennsylvania

 

The 1900 federal census told me that Carrie was still living at home with her parents, five of her siblings, and her niece (my great grandmother); it also told me that she was 25, single and did not have an occupation.  When I moved on to the 1910 census for the family unit, I was not surprised to see her absent; I just chalked it up to yet another female relative lost to marriage.  Oh, but wait…the 1910 census for a neighboring county lists a Carrie A Wetzel who is 35, single and without an occupation.  Could this be my ancestor…an inmate at the State Hospital for the Insane?  Whoa, what did I miss?

 

A federal census record for a woman with a similar name does not prove that she is one of mine so I had to just sit on this for a spell.  When Pennsylvania made death records for certain years available as public records at the beginning of 2012 the first this I did was to go through the death index year by year looking for any listing for a Carrie Wetzel.  There she was, or so I hoped, in that same neighboring county of Montour just six short years later.  The two and a half hour drive to the State Archives seemed to take forever…I just wanted to get there and see this death certificate (along with a few others).

 

Carrie A Wetzel…yeah, yeah, yeah…parents…Henry and Catherine Wetzel of Trevorton.  It was her!  Cause of death, phthisis pulmonalis; contributory cause, epilepsy…she was Epileptic.  But why was she in the State Hospital?  Examining the death certificate further for any additional clues, I saw that she resided at the institution for 12 yrs, 3 mos, 6 ds; this meant that she has been there since August 17, 1904.  Ah, now it is becoming clearer.  Her mother passed away in February of 1904.  Her mother must have been the caretaker and after her passing, the family may not have been able to provide adequate care.  I like to think that they made a go at it since Carrie remained at home for another six months.  I don’t know if a decline in her health or the fact that all of the adults in the house were working the mines which kept them out of the house for much of the day but it must have been a very difficult and painful decision for all.  Thankfully, Carrie’s death certificate also provided her place of burial, which was unknown to this point; now the family can visit this woman whose final years were so tragic.

 

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