When today’s birthday girl was born in St. Louis on February 5, 1851, her family probably had no idea about how her future would end up in East Perry County, Missouri. Bertha Dellit was the daughter of Andreas and Theresia (Preusser) Dellit, and Bertha was baptized at Old Trinity Lutheran Church in St. Louis. Her father, Andreas, was one of the original immigrants who was part of the Gesellschaft that arrived in America in 1839. Andreas came to America aboard the Olbers. He originated from the city of Dresden and was a baker by trade. He was also one of the immigrants who chose to stay in St. Louis and not settle in Perry County.
When she was 20 years old, Bertha got married at Old Trinity. She became the wife of Ferdinand Ernst Goehring, whose parents were also both original immigrants. Their names were Gottlieb and Rosine (Schlimpert) Goehring. On the ships list, the Goehring name was spelled Göring. Gottlieb and Rosine had been married in Altenburg in 1847, and Ferdinand was their oldest son, born on October 19, 1848. We find this family in the 1850 census for Altenburg. Gottlieb was a farmer.
When Gottlieb arrived in 1839 with his mother, Rosine, they were assigned some property not far from where Trinity Church would be located. We can see that land in this map from Zion on the Mississippi. As that map indicates, the Goehring land was lot #19.
I could not find Ferdinand Goehring in the 1870 census. We do know that he was no longer living with his parents because he does not show up in that census in Altenburg. What we do know is that Ferdinand was getting married to Bertha Dellit in St. Louis on September 24, 1871. Here is their St. Louis marriage record.
Rev. Schaller was the pastor at Old Trinity Lutheran Church in 1871. By that time, Trinity had built a bigger church in the Soulard area. Here is a drawing of that church.
After their marriage, the Goehrings stayed and worked in St. Louis for a while. We find them there in the 1880 census.
Ferdinand was a working as a dry goods clerk. If you look at the history of his father-in-law, Andreas Dellit, you will also discover that he was sometimes listed as a grocer and a baker. Between his own work as a clerk in the dry goods business and his father-in-law’s possible influence in the grocery business, we may understand his future occupation.
Sometime in the late 1800’s, the Goehring family moved back down to East Perry County. Ferdinand established a general store in Frohna and eventually was in partnership with his oldest son, Theodore Goehring. I was able to find two old photographs of the F.E. Goehring & Son Store in Frohna.
You can see from this photo that it was in the days of horses, buggies, and wagons. There are numerous people in front of the store. It would be nice to know who they were, but we do not. Here is a second photo from a slightly different angle.
This photo is a bit clearer, and also shows several folks standing and sitting outside the store. That store was located on the west end of the village of Frohna. On this 1915 map showing properties in the village of Frohna, you can find both Ferdinand (F.E.) and Theodore. It is where you find the F.E. property that the store was located. There is a shaded rectangle showing the store.
In this 1900 census, we find both Ferdinand and Theodore listed next to each other.
F.E. is called a merchant, and Theodore a salesman. Another interesting fact here is that Theodore was the enumerator for this census as well as the one in 1910 for the Frohna area. Here is his signature on a page from the 1910 census.
I happen to be a big fan of Theodore’s census records. First of all, I find his penmanship very easy to read. Also, he must have used a good pen to fill out these forms because, compared to other records I have have had to look at over the years, his are still very clear and precise.
Theodore would go on to marry Emma Weinhold in 1898. Emma was the daughter of Martin Weinhold, one of the owners of the flour mill in Frohna.
Bertha Goehring died in 1929. For some reason, Ferdinand died in 1933 in Chester, Illinois. There is a certificate of death from Illinois that shows that. Both Bertha and Ferdinand are buried in the Concordia Lutheran Cemetery in Frohna.
Theodore died while visiting family in Nebraska. Here is a portion of his obituary that tells even more history of the Goehring family.
Theodore and Emma are also buried in the Concordia Cemetery.
I believe a variety of owners ran the store on the west end of Frohna over the years. Then in 1991, a fire destroyed the building. A new building was constructed, and that building is known as the West End Tavern and Grocery. Here is what that establishment looks like today. It shows the typical early morning crowd that drives there in their pick-up trucks for breakfast and conversation.
The present proprietor of this business in Keith LeGrand. Here we see him posing with the old photograph of the Goehring and Son Store which he has hanging in his office to remind him of the history of his establishment.