Run of the Mills

Our German Family Tree records 14 children born into the Martin and Magdalena (Noennig) Weinhold family.  Arthur Joseph Weinhold was the 12th child, and he was born on this day, February 9th, in 1894.  All of these Weinhold children were baptized at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna.  Arthur’s entire life was centered around mills.  Here is a photo of Arthur’s parents.

Martin and Magdalene Weinhold

Arthur’s father, Martin, was a miller in Frohna.  He and one of his brothers, Gotthilf Weinhold, were the proprietors of the Frohna Mill.  Someday, I am going to write a story about these two brothers and their very successsful business in Frohna.  On this photo of their flour mill, the H. Weinhold painted on the side of the building was the father of these two brothers, who had started this business.

Frohna mill
H. Weinhold & Sons Flouring Mill

You can see on this 1915 map of Frohna where that mill and the Weinhold homes were located.  The Weinholds certainly lived close enough to walk to their church on Sundays.

Weinhold mill land map Frohna

The German Family Tree also lists 13 children in the Gotthilf Weinhold family.  I cannot even begin to imagine what it must have been like during that time when so many children were hanging around that mill during their childhood days.  The five youngest children in the Martin Weinhold family were all boys, and this photograph was taken of those five.

Youngest Martin Weinhold sons

In this 1910 census, we see that Arthur, at the age of 16, is already working at his father’s flour mill.  I included Gotthilf’s family on this image.

Martin and Gotthilf Weinhold 1910 census Frohna
1910 census – Frohna, MO

In this family photo of the Martin Weinhold family, we see quite a few of the children and grandchildren.  The young man pointed out by the red arrow has been identified as Arthur.

Martin and Magdalene Weinhold family Arthur

Meanwhile, another brother of Martin and Gotthilf, Joseph Weinhold, was operating another flour mill that had been established on the banks of the Mississippi River in Wittenberg.  When Arthur filled out his draft registration for World War I, he indicated that he was working at that mill in Wittenberg for his Uncle Joseph.

Arthur Weinhold – WWI draft registration

By the time of World War I, Joseph Weinhold was in his 70’s.  In several other previous posts, including Surrounded by Good Lookin’ Women, it has been stated that Joseph’s children were all girls.  It is not surprising then, that Arthur is stating on this form that he is the “only miller in community”.  This form was dated June 5, 1917.  A few weeks later, Arthur would no longer be single.  He married Irene Hemmann on June 24, 1917 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg.  Here is his marriage license.

Arthur Weinhold Irene Hemmann marriage license
Weinhold/Hemmann marriage license

Irene was the daughter of Benjamin and Emma (Sachman) Hemmann.  Benjamin was a teacher at Trinity Lutheran School at that time.  Before teaching in Altenburg, he had been the teacher in Wittenberg and had been a resident of that town for several years.  Here is a photo of Teacher Hemmann with several of his children.  One of the females in the photo must be Irene, but I am not sure which one.  I do know that she was the youngest girl in the family.

Benjamin Hemmann family later
Teacher Hemmann family

Albert Weinhold is identified in this photo of some workers at the Wittenberg mill as being the man on the top left.

Workers at Weinhold Mill Wittenberg

Here is a photograph of the mill in Wittenberg.

Weinhold Flour Mill Wittenberg

Between 1919 and 1925, the Weinholds had four children, all baptized at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Wittenberg.  However, in the 1930 census, we find them living in St. Louis, Missouri.  Their home was near Holy Cross Lutheran Church and he was still a miller.  Arthur became a voting member of Holy Cross in 1927.

Arthur Weinhold 1930 census St. Louis
1930 census – St. Louis, MO

On his World War II draft card from 1942, we see that he was employed at the Ralston Purina Mills.

Arthur Weinhold – WWII draft card

The Ralston Purina Mills mostly was in the business of producing food for animals.  They are especially remembered for making Purina Dog Chow and Cat Chow.  They also were involved to a smaller extent with making breakfast cereal.

Ralston Purina World's Fair ad

Checkerboards have always been part of their logo and ads over the years.  Their complex of buildings was even called Checkerboard Square.

Checkerboard Square St. Louis

Arthur died in 1967; Irene died in 1980.  They are both buried in the Laurel Hills Memorial Gardens in St. Louis County.

Arthur’s life was certainly a “run of the mills”.  From the Frohna mill to the Wittenberg mill to the big mill business in St. Louis, his life centered around the milling business.  The mills in Perry County have all disappeared, but the memory of the mills and the Weinhold name that is still associated with them still lingers.

Soon we at the museum are going to have some paintings of Missouri mills on display here at the museum.  We will let you know when they are ready to view, but it should be sometime this spring.



2 thoughts on “Run of the Mills

  1. Irene is the girl in the back. She was my great aunt. I remember when she and Arthur visited my grandparents in Hannibal, Missouri.
    I really enjoy reading all of your articles.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s