Rosa Versemann would have been 116 years old today. She was born in Farrar, Missouri on November 21, 1901 and baptized at Salem Lutheran Church. Rosa’s parents were Herman and Maria (Koenig) Versemann. We have been provided this photo of Rosa when she was relatively young. It is an example of a photo put on a post card that must have been fairly popular back in those days. The photo I posted on the Otto Winter story a few days ago was another example of this.
Seven years earlier, a baby boy was born into the Henry and Martha (Hesse) Steffens family. His name was Ernest Martin Steffens. He was born on October 26, 1894 and also baptized at Salem Lutheran Church. Ernest and Rosa would eventually get married, but before they did, a few other events took place.
First, Ernest left Farrar. He, like so many other young men of that era, moved to Kansas. And like so many others from the Farrar area, he moved to Sylvan Grove, Kansas. We find evidence of this when we look at Ernest’s World War I draft registration.
Ernest did end up getting drafted, and he served time with the 65th Spruce Squadron.
The Spruce Squadrons were created during that war to help provide the spruce lumber that was needed to construct the many airplanes that were needed to fight the war. These Spruce Squadrons served in the Pacific Northwest. An article describing these squadrons can be found at this link:
Here are a few photos I found showing some Spruce Squadrons. This first one is a photo of the 64th Spruce Squadron. I could not locate one for the 65th Squadron.
This one shows some of these men at work.
Ernest was not sent overseas to do the fighting, but he did serve his country faithfully by performing this grueling work.
Upon his discharge, Ernest returned to Farrar. It was not long after that when he married Rosa Versemann. You can see on this land map from 1915 how close to one another the Steffens and Versemann families lived.
This Steffens/Versemann wedding occurred on November 27, 1919, at Salem Lutheran Church. Here is their wedding photo.
One of the grandchildren of this couple, Kathy Stueve, provided the above photo and the one of the wedding party below. It just so happens that today is also Kathy and Clifford Stueve’s anniversary.
I find it just a little surprising that the wedding party was an odd number of people.
Ernest, along with August Sticht, operated a garage in Farrar. We have this photo of that business taken in the 1930’s.
I have also been told that the Farrar Transfer Company was owned and operated by the owners of this garage and the Eggers and Company General Store. Here is a photo of those owners and one of their trucks.
Left to right: August Sticht, Walter Eggers, Ernest Steffens, and Martin “Tom” Eggers
This photo shows more of their trucks.
A later photo was taken which shows the old garage with some other newer buildings which surrounded it.
The garage is in the center. #1. Grain Mill #2. Harness Shop/Barber Shop #3. Blacksmith Shop built in 1938 #4. Mechanics Shop built in 1941
Ernst died in 1952 at the age of 57; Rosa died in 1983 at the age of 81. They are both buried in the Salem Lutheran Cemetery in Farrar.
There are plenty of descendants around here that came from this couple. They can be proud of the contributions that were made to this community and our country by these two faithful people.