A Bucket of Beer with Minnie, Music, and Math

I was attracted to today’s story because of the names involved.  One is very short; the other is not.  The short name is Ude, a surname that could be found in the New Wells area for a short time in the late 1800’s.  The name that is not so short is Schaumloeffel.  This name also arrived in New Wells when a young man by that name became the teacher at Immanuel Lutheran Chuurch in New Wells.

Before I move on, let me point out that the word “schaum” in German means foam, suds, or froth.  The word “loeffel” in German can mean bucket.  I don’t know about you, but for me, a bucket of suds brings to mind a bucket of beer.  And I choose to use that as a translation for the name Schaumloeffel.  I even saw my German-speaking buddy, Edgar Dreyer, this morning, and he gave me his blessing to use “suds bucket” as an acceptable translation, although the most likely translation is “suds spoon”.

Now to get on to the story.  September 9th was the birthday of Wilhelmine Ude who was born in 1868 in New Wells.  In several later forms she is called Minnie.  Her parents were August and Maria (Horst) Ude.  August and Ude were married at Old Trinity Lutheran Church in St. Louis in 1858.  Then sometime in the mid-1860’s, they moved to New Wells.  In the 1870 census, August is shown as a merchant.  By 1900, he is called the county treasurer.  He also was a widower by then and living with the family of a probate judge in Cape Girardeau County.

August Ude 1900 census Cape County
1900 census – Cape Girardeau County, MO

By the way, even though the name Ude consists of only three letters, I am almost certain that it is pronounced using two syllables.  I suppose I could ask some locals how to pronounce this name, but I am guessing they would tell me Oo-duh, Oo-dee, or Oo-day.

In 1891, Minnie Ude became Mrs. Schaumloeffel when she married Teacher Edward Schaumloeffel at Immanuel Lutheran Church where he was the teacher and the Ude family were members.  Edward’s father was named George and his mother was another Wilhelmine.  Edward had immigrated to America in the mid-1880’s.  Here is the marriage license for Edward and Minnie.

Schaumloeffel Ude marriage license
Schaumloeffel/Ude marriage license

Nine years after their marriage, the Schaumloeffels can be found living in St. Joseph, Missouri with four children.  The oldest was born in 1892, but we have no baptism record for that child in our German Family Tree.  I have to conclude that they must have moved away from New Wells shortly after their marriage.  Also, on this census, Edward is described more specifically as a music teacher.

Edward Schaumloeffel 1900 census St. Joseph MO
1900 census – St. Joseph, MO

One more child was born to this family while they were in St. Joseph, but then Edward’s career took a turn.  Edward and Minnie moved to Chicago, and Edward was no longer in the teaching profession.  Over the course of the rest of his life, Edward worked for a railroad company.  His occupation shown in the 1910, 1920, and 1930 census indicates that he was working with numbers and sitting behind a desk.  Edward must have also had considerable Math skills along with his musical talents.

Edward and Minnie had five children, only one of which was a boy.  He would be a Junior, another Edward George Schaumloeffel.  His occupation as a surveyor and a civil engineer indicate he may have gotten his love for Math from his father…..maybe even his Ude grandfather.  The daughters, after getting married, ended up scattered across the country.  One of them, Genevieve, remained in the Chicago area where she worked as a stenographer for a lawyer.  A city directory shows her in that position.

Genevieve Schaumloeffel 1925 city directory Chicago
Genevieve Schaumloeffel – 1925 city directory – Chicago, IL

This is the Harris Trust Building where she worked in downtown Chicago.


There is an indication that some descendants of this family decided to shorten their name down to Schaum.  I guess you could say they “kicked the bucket”.

Edward died in 1943; Minnie died in 1949.  I was unable to find where they are buried, but it is almost certainly somewhere in the Chicago area.

I have to admit that I like a good story that contains music and Math……and a bucket of suds.

bucket of beer




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