Not What They Seem

I will start today’s post by sharing images of two census records from 1850.  Both of them are from the city of St. Louis, Missouri.  First, we have this one:

Charles Schuricht 1850 census St. Louis
1850 census – St. Louis, MO

Then this one:

Herman Schuricht 1850 census St. Louis
1850 census – St. Louis, MO

Both of these records are, as the title suggests, not as they seem.  The top record seems to be Frederick Schuricht’s family consisting of his wife and two of his children.  The bottom record seems to be Gottlieb Schuricht’s family with one child and probably Gottlieb’s father.  Neither one of these assumptions are correct.

They are not what they seem, in part because of an event which took place on July 8, 1849.  On that day, Johann Karl Ehregott Schuricht died during the infamous Cholera Epidemic which inflicted St. Louis with so many deaths.  Karl was the father of the five year old Charles in the top image and the three year old Hermann in the bottom image.  In other words, Charles and Hermann were brothers but living in two different households.  In both cases, the boys were living with an uncle.

One may wonder what happened to the mother of these two boys.  Her name was Maria Elisabeth Christina Hedwig (Kraft) Schuricht.  She was the youngest daughter of the butcher, Herman Kraft, of St. Louis.  Karl and Elisabeth had been married in 1843 by Rev. C.F.W. Walther.  Here is their marriage record.

Schuricht Kraft marriage record St. Louis
Schuricht/Kraft marriage record

After they were married, they had three children.  Two of them were the two boys listed above.  There was also a daughter born on August 4, 1849…..about a month after her father died.  That daughter then died on November 6th of that year as a result of consumption (tuberculosis).  After that death, it is debatable what happened to the mother.

Family histories on either attribute the mother’s death to the year 1850 or 1855.  The people who choose the 1855 date probably do so because there is an item in some St. Louis death records that says an Elizabeth Kraft died in that year.  I think the 1850 date may have been passed down in histories that have been written about the Schuricht family over the years without documentation.  Her death is not included in the Old Trinity records, and I could not locate a cemetery in that listed her.  It is also possible that some researchers have seen the above 1850 census records and assumed that Maria must have died late in 1849 or early in 1850, causing these children to be housed with their uncles.

I lean toward the 1850 date.  If Maria died in 1855, then the most reasonable conclusion would be that she felt she could not take care of her two boys.  I just do not think that is as likely as an 1850 death.  The problem with the 1850 death is the fact that it is not recorded in the Old Trinity books.

Here is another mystery involved with this Schuricht couple.  Many family histories on attach these two photos to these two Schurichts.

I guess I have problems believing that these are photos of two people that died in their thirties.  They look too old to me.

In 1860, we find the young Charles (Karl) Schuricht in a list of students who were attending Concordia Seminary in St. Louis.

Carl Schuricht 1860 census St. Louis

He is just 14 years old, so I am guessing that he was part of the gymnasium program which was preparing young men for later seminary training to become pastors.  I was unable to find Herman in the 1860 census.  However, ten years after Charles was living with Frederick Schuricht, Barbara Lochner was living in that Schuricht household.  Her story was told in the article, Mama Lochner.

The really interesting part of this story is the fact that we find both Karl and Herman living in the same place in Illinois in 1880.

Karl and Herman Schuricht 1880 census Fayette County Illinois
1880 census – Fayette County, IL

Charles is the pastor and Herman is a teacher at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Blue Point, Illinois, which is near Altamont.  While these two brothers were at that congregation, there were several babies born that did not live very long.  The St. Paul Lutheran Cemetery contains several Schuricht names on gravestones, all of which were children who died early.

Schuricht graves St. Paul Lutheran Cemetery Fayette Co IL

I found photos of both Charles and Herman.  Charles is on the left; Herman is on the right.

Here is fairly recent photo of St. Paul Lutheran in Blue Point.

St. Paul Blue Point Illinois

Charles died in 1918 and is buried in Zion Friedheim Lutheran Cemetery in Decatur, Indiana.  Pastor Schuricht is not shown in a list of pastors who have served that congregation.  However, Rev. F.C.D. Wyneken is.  He was the second president of the Lutheran Church=Missouri Synod.  Here is Carl’s gravestone.

Rev. Carl Schuricht gravestone Decatur, IN

Herman died in 1932 and is buried in Prairietown Cemetery in Madison County, Illinois.  It is near Alton.  I do not have a photo of his gravestone.

The area around Altamont, Illinois has had many connections to the 1839 immigration and Perry County over the years.  Several teachers and pastors in that vicinity spent a part of their time in Perry County or had roots to the immigration.  Some of these were mentioned in a previous post about Teacher Stohs from Wittenberg titled, Teacher Stohs – Dad’s Teacher.

There was also another post written about another uncle of these two men who died on the way up the Mississippi River in 1839.  It was titled, Buried on the Bank.

This was a story about how two brothers were separated by circumstances beyond their control when they were very young.  However, God managed to find a way to get these two siblings back together as they both proclaimed the Gospel in the same little church in rural Illinois.  God works in mysterious ways.



4 thoughts on “Not What They Seem

  1. Hello! This site is very interesting. Karl Gottlob Schuricht is my 3rd great grandfather. I’d like to learn more.


  2. Warren, tell me what you think – I may also have found Carl living with his uncle Johann Fuerchtegott and his grandfather Gottlob/Gottlieb in the 10 July 1860 Census. He may have been staying with them before or while attending the pre-seminary gymnasium, as that census is from 30 July. Note: in some census records, Johann F is transcribed as Johann T or vise versa, making them easy to confuse with Johann Traugotts’. Adding to the confusion, both their wives were Anna Tirmsensteins. Anna Susanna was married to Johann Fuerchtegott and Anna Maria to Johann Traugott. I use the children to verify that I have the right John.


  3. Thank you, Warren, for this very informative blog. I will definitely be looking for and downloading all the records you found to add to my Schuricht research folder.

    I am a descendant of the Samuel Martin Tirmenstein family, of which 3 sisters married (or almost married) 2 Schuricht brothers. My uncle did extensive research of both these lines back in the 70s, reaching out to many family members and also working with German researchers. I currently am scanning and uploading all his research, which includes many pictures, as I build the family history online (which will include Zion Roots).

    I believe I can confirm the pictures which have been attributed to Johann Karl Ehregott Schuricht and his wife Marie Hedwig online may be mis-identified as you suspect. As identified in family albums, the pictures are of Johann Fuerchtegott Schuricht and his wife Anna Susanna Tirmenstein. I also have pictures of them younger which indicate similar facial features.

    The album from which the pictures came is now located at the Lutheran Heritage Center, thanks to the mutual agreement of my uncle, a descendant of the Holls/Esther Tirmenstein lineage and Tom Hirsch, a descendant of the Samuel Martin Jr Tirmenstein/Dorothea Doerries lineage. I have created a google drive folder with scans of the album and notes of any identifying marks, as well as a folder of the unidentified pictures. I hope to meet other relatives who may be able to assist in identifying them all.

    Actually cholera affected more than just Johann Karl’s family. Johann Fuerchtegott Schuricht was originally engaged to, and I believe did marry (based upon family history by Stella Wuerffel) Concordia Christiana Tirmenstein, but she died of cholera as a young bride (as well as her sister Elisabetha Juliane). Their sister Anna Susanna came to assist Johann through his grief and with the care of the home, and later became his wife. But they had met years ago on the ship to America, where he carried her around on his shoulders as a young girl. They hosted many students of Concordia College in their home, based upon other family histories I have found online. I believe they also hosted my great-great-grandfather, which is probably how he came to know his future wife Esther Tirmenstein.

    I hope to be able to contribute through my uncle’s work and now my own to the creation of a Schuricht album for the Library, as I did not see one there when I came to the genealogy event. Though I am not descended from these marriages, I am a relative by marriage to this family and find its history as interesting as the Tirmensteins’.


  4. God bless you Warren. I am decended from Gottlieb Schuricht. We were quite fuzzy in our records of when the Walther group first arrived in St. Louis. This blog fills in many facts unknown to us.


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