Corporal Boehme

Today would have been the 152nd anniversary of Ludwig and Sarah (Hartung) Boehme.  I have already written a little bit about this couple in a previous post titled, From Muddy Creek to Brazeau Creek.  That post focused on Sarah’s family that came to Perry County from Pennsylvania.  Today I will spend more time on Ludwig’s story.

Another post briefly discussed Ludwig Boehme’s family in the post, Through the Valley of the Shadow of Death.  Ludwig was one of the original immigrants, coming to America aboard the Republik as an infant.  Even before the immigrants arrived in Perry County, his father, Wilhelm Boehme, died, leaving his mother, Johanna, as a widow.  About a year after their arrival, Johanna married Johann Darnstaedt, a young man who apparently was willing to marry a woman who was 15 years older than he was who already had four children under the age of 7.  It is likely that Ludwig spent a portion of his childhood in this cabin.

Dorothy W Darnstaedt cabin X
Darnstaedt Cabin

Efforts to preserve this cabin were made over the years, but termites eventually took it down.  This cabin was found in the Seelitz community.  We see Ludwig in this Darnstaedt household in the 1850 census.

Darnstaedt 18850 census
1850 census – Perry County, MO

Before the 1860 census, Ludwig’s mother had died, and John Darnstaedt had remarried.  His second wife was Christiane Kaufmann.  Ludwig cannot be found in the 1860 census.    Ludwig volunteered to serve in the military at the beginning of the Civil War at the age of 23.  Here is a record of his service in a regiment under the leadership of Captain Carl Weber, another Perry County resident who was an original immigrant.

Ludwig Boehme Civil War service

I found this description of the responsibilities of this regiment:

Organized at Perryville for six months October 10, 1861. Duty at Pilot Knob, Ironton, and in District or Southeast Missouri, till February, 1862. Mustered out February 25, 1862.

They were not involved in the Battle of Pilot Knob which took place in 1864.  Ludwig is shown as having the rank of corporal.  The reference in the remarks at the bottom of this form indicate that Ludwig became ill at Camp Greason.  I looked into where this camp was located, and I have come to the conclusion that it is found in Perry County not far from Biehle, where there is a Camp Grayson cemetery.  There are only four marked graves in that cemetery.  About a year ago, the Perry County Historical Society had a meeting where they invited anyone to attend who may have information about Camp Greason/Camp Grayson or would be interested in it.  I suppose if I had attended that meeting, I’d be better equipped to answer questions about Camp Greason.  I found this photo of that meeting on their Facebook page.

Camp Grayson-Greason meeting

It was not long after the Civil War that Ludwig married Sarah at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg.  They were married on April 27, 1865.  This is a relatively early photograph of Ludwig and Sarah.  This photo is one of the reasons that I decided to tell Ludwig’s story today.  I find it hard to resist telling a story when I find an actual photograph of one of the original immigrants.


According to our German Family Tree, this couple had thirteen children, several of which died early.

Here are photos of Ludwig and Sarah taken at a later date.

I am fascinated that Sarah’s photo was taken at the Dagle Studio in Murphysboro, Illinois.  The only way I can figure that happened was for her to cross the river to travel to that studio to have that photograph taken.  I wouldn’t doubt that Ludwig’s picture was taken at the same place at the same time.

A threshing company around 1900 was named the Richter Boehme Co.  Ludwig was an owner and operator of this company.  Here is a photo of threshing being done in the Wittenberg Bottoms around this time.

Brazeau Threshing X

We have another nice photo of Ludwig and Sarah with some members of their family standing in front of what may have been their home.

Ludwig Boehme family photo

We know this photo was taken before 1901 because that is the year that Sarah died.  Ludwig would live until 1918.  Here is his death certificate.

Ludwig Boehme death certificate

This record indicates that Ludwig died as a result of an accidental fall.   He was almost 80 years old at the time of his death.

Sarah and Ludwig are not buried in the same cemetery.  Sarah is buried in the Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Altenburg, and Ludwig is buried in the St. Paul’s Lutheran Cemetery in Wittenberg.  St. Paul’s did not begin as an official congregation until 1903, so it didn’t have a cemetery when Sarah died.




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