Learning Latin from a Blacksmith’s Son

Today’s birthday boy has just one record in our German Family Tree. That one record will end up taking us to so many locations by the time this post is finished.  George Albert Dede was born on August 4, 1887 and baptized at Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar, Missouri.  Here is his baptism record.

Dede Winter marriage record Immanuel New Wells MO
Albert Dede baptism record – Salem, Farrar, MO

Albert was the son of Carl and Elisabeth (Winter) Dede.  Carl Dede, the father, can be found in an 1880 census from Farrar.

Charles Dede 1880 census Farrar MO
1880 census – Farrar, MO

Carl was living with the John Miesner family, and he is shown to be an orphan.  Carl’s mother had died in 1862, and his father had died in 1870.  In 1884, Carl married Elisabeth Winter in Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells, Missouri.  Carl and Elisabeth had 9 children baptized at Salem Lutheran Church, the last of those being baptized in 1899.  Sometime between 1899 and 1900, the Dede family moved to Egypt Mills, which is located in Cape Girardeau County.  Here is the 1900 census from their new home.

Albert Dede 1900 census Egypt Mills MO
1900 census – Egypt Mills, MO

Carl’s is documented here to be a blacksmith.  We find Albert Dede’s confirmation record in the church books of Trinity Lutheran Church in Egypt Mills.

Albert Dede confirmation record Trinity Egypt Mills MO
Albert Dede confirmation class 1901 – Trinity, Egypt Mills, MO

In 1900, Trinity Lutheran Church constructed a new bell tower for their sanctuary.  Here is a photo of that church taken in 1896, before the bell tower was added.

Trinity Lutheran Egypt Mills MO 1896

Here is how that church looks now.

Trinity Lutheran Egypt Mills MO

I suppose it is possible that Carl Dede may have done some blacksmith work for this project.

Not long after Albert’s confirmation, Elisabeth Dede gave birth to Else Elizabeth Dede on October 16th.  Here is the transcription of her baptism record.

Else Elizabeth Dede baptism record Trinity Egypt Mills MO
Else Dede baptism record – Trinity, Egypt Mills, MO

However, before Else was even baptized, her mother, Elisabeth, died.  Here is her death record.

Elizabeth Dede death record Trinity Egypt Mills MO
Elisabeth Dede death record – Trinity, Egypt Mills, MO

The gravestone for Elisabeth can be found in the Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Egypt Mills.

Elizabeth Winter Dede gravestone Trinity Egypt Mills MO
Elisabeth Dede gravestone – Trinity, Egypt Mills, MO

I cannot explain why this happened, but when the baby, Else, died on October 31st, her death record shows up in the Concordia Lutheran, Frohna, church books, and she was buried in the Concordia Cemetery.  Here is her grave marker.

Elisie Dede grave marker Concordia Frohna MO
Else Dede grave marker – Concordia, Frohna, MO

There are still records to be found for the Dede family at the Egypt Mills church until 1907, but in 1910, we find another daughter, Esther Dede, being confirmed at Concordia, Frohna.  The Dede family must have moved back to Perry County.

But what happened to Albert Dede, today’s birthday boy?  Before 1910, Albert must have  attended the Seminary and become a Lutheran pastor.  In the 1910 census, we find Albert living in Independence, Ohio, which is in the Cleveland area where he is listed as a minister.

Albert Dede 1910 census Cuyahoga County OH
1910 census – Independence, OH

He was boarding with the Bleckert family.  However, just one year later, we find Albert living in Canada.  Here is a Canadian census from 1911 showing him living in Nipissing, Ontario.  He was also a Lutheran pastor there.

Albert Dede 1911 census Ontario Canada
1911 census – Nipissing, Ontario, Canada

We know Albert returned to Cleveland to get married in 1913.  Here is the marriage license for Albert and his new bride, Alma Staas.  They were married on September 13th.

Dede Staas marriage license Cuyahoga OH
Dede/Staas marriage license

In the next record in which I find Albert, he was the pastor of St. John Lutheran Church in Defiance, Ohio.  He served there from 1923-1927.  The only photo I found of Albert was taken when he was a pastor in Defiance.

Albert Dede

In 1927, Rev. Dede took a call to become a professor at Concordia College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  This 1930 census indicates that he and his wife had four children, two born in Canada and two born in Ohio.

Albert Dede 1930 census Milwaukee WI
1930 census – Milwaukee, WI

The 1940 census demonstrates that not only was Albert a professor at Concordia College, but he was a Latin teacher.

Albert Dede 1940 census Milwaukee WI occupation
1940 census – Milwaukee, WI

There was one more child born in Milwaukee, and one of his sons had become a lawyer.  The next record I could find for Rev. Dede was in this city directory for Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1959.

Albert Dede 1959 city directory Ft. Lauderdale FL

It also indicates that he was pastor at Hope Lutheran Church.  This really puzzles me.  I spent 14 years in Fort Lauderdale as a Lutheran teacher, and I never heard of a Hope Lutheran Church.  There was a Hope Lutheran Church in Pompano Beach, but I would find it hard to believe that Albert would live so far away from that city.  I know his home was not far from Peace Lutheran Church.

When I saw this city directory, I was amazed.  The Dedes lived at 2516 NE 18th Ave.  When I lived in Fort Lauderdale, I bought my first house at 1621 NE 16th Ave.  This map shows how close these two addresses are.

Albert Dede home Ft. Lauderdale FL
Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Rev. Dede died in 1965.  I arrived in Fort Lauderdale in 1972, seven years after his death.  He died in Florida, but he is buried in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.  His grave can be found in the Cape County Memorial Park Cemetery with this gravestone.

Rev. Albert Dede gravestone Cape County Cape Girardeau MO
Rev. Albert Dede gravestone – Cape County Memorial Park, Cape Girardeau, MO

In the end, Albert Dede returned to his Southeast Missouri roots.  His life had taken him to numerous locations around the United States, and even into Canada for a while.  I wonder how many of his Latin students knew that he was just a blacksmith’s son who lost his mother when he was just 14 years old.  This is just one of so many stories that come out of Perry County in which one of its natives goes on to become a full-time worker in the Lutheran church.  I consider this to be a proud legacy for this area.


3 thoughts on “Learning Latin from a Blacksmith’s Son

  1. Hello, I did send Mr. Schmidt a letter that included some clarifications and answers to questions within his article.
    I’ve not had a response back from him.


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