In the early days of this blog, I wrote a post titled, The Beginning of the Hemmann Herd. As was the case with many of those early posts, it was very short. I have gotten “wordier” as time has gone by, and now WordPress tells me a typical post is over 800 words long. Today, I am going to embellish the story of Wilhelm Hemmann, the oldest son of his prolific father, J.G. Hemmann. Below is a photo of J.G. Hemmann and his tombstone, which we have on display in our museum.
Before I get to Wilhelm’s story, I feel the need to discuss his father and mother for a moment. Johann Gottfried Hemmann was from Paitzdorf, Germany, and we recently received some old records from that German church. I decided to see if I could find J.G.’s baptism record. This search led me to some records that make me ask for some help in reading some old German. The record below looks to me like the baptism record for J.G., but it appears to be a record for November 10, 1791, not November 10, 1793 as his tombstone states. This record is the last one for 1791, right before the first record for 1792. I did not locate any record in 1793 that looked like J.G. Hemmann.
If any of our followers can read this document, please leave a comment letting us know what it says.
Wilhelm Hemmann was born on March 10, 1820 in Paitzdorf. I went searching for his baptism record also. Below is what I think may be that record. Again, I’m looking for help reading this.
I believe the first notation at the beginning of this record says “10 March” in German. The red arrow pointing down shows what I believe is the name Hemmann. In front of it looks like J. Gottfried. I have also learned that when there is a horizontal line made over a letter in German script, it means that the letter below it is doubled. That would indicate that this word has a double “m” and a double “n” in it. The arrow pointing left is the name Wilhelm. This record is also located among others that are from the year 1820. Therefore, I think this is Wilhelm’s baptism record. What do you think?
We are also told that J.G. lost his first wife, Maria (Bachmann) Hemmann not long before departing for America in 1839. Our GFT says she died on October 28, 1838 in Paitzdorf. I think I have also located her death record in the Paitzdorf books.
I enlarged this record to make part of it easier to read.
In the second box from the left, you can see the name, Johann Gottfried Hemmann. In the third box, you can see the month October. The number behind it is a little fuzzy, but I think it could be 28.
About a year after Maria’s death, the Hemmann family boarded the ship, Johann Georg, and headed for Missouri. We find them in this passenger list for that ship.
It is recorded that there were 8 children born to J.G. and Maria Hemmann in Germany. Two of those children died before 1839, so you see 6 children on this ship with their father. The oldest one was Wilhelm, who was 19 years old at the time.
One of the first records we find in the Grace Lutheran, Uniontown books is J.G. Hemmann’s second marriage. He married Maria Rosina Hoffmann on February 2, 1840. Maria was 21 years old, and if you use the 1793 birth year for J.G., he was 46 years old. If he was really born in 1791, he would have been 48 years old. That couple would have 12 more children.
Maria Rosina Hoffmann can also be found on the passenger list for the Johann Georg.
She is found listed at the bottom of a group of folks with the name Frentzel. They are all shown as being from the town of Stein in Germany. There is also a note in our GFT that she was the foster daughter of the Frentzels. If she was, that brings up a very interesting situation. That is because Wilhelm Hemmann married Johanne Sophie Frentzel, who is shown on this passenger list right above Maria Rosina Hoffmann. Therefore, J.G. Hemmann and his son, Wilhelm, married two “daughters” from the same family, one of them being a foster daughter.
Today would have been the 175th anniversary for Wilhelm and Johanne Sophie (Frentzel) Hemmann. They were married on November 9, 1843 at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown. This is part of their marriage record in that church’s books.
We find Wilhelm and Sophia in the 1850 census for Brazeau Township in Perry County. Johanne’s mother, Sophia, was living with them, and they had four of their six children by that time.
In 1860, these Hemmanns were found in the Cinque Hommes Township in Perry County.
One more child would be born to this couple after this census. Here is the 1870 census, also from the Cinque Hommes Township.
Wilhelm was always a farmer. In a 1915 map showing property ownership, we find Sophia Hemmann owning some property near Uniontown. I am guessing this was the land that Wilhelm farmed.
This parcel may have been the one listed in this land purchase document from 1850.
Wilhelm died in 1880 and did not make it into that census. The next census in which we find Johanne Sophie was the 1900 census. From the 1870 census on, she was called Sophia or Sophie. In 1900, she was living with her son, Gustav, who was a farmer in Shawnee Township in northern Cape Girardeau County.
Gustav and Margaretha Hemmann were renowned for having three consecutive sets of twins. That story was told in the post, Triple Twins. You can see Gustav’s land in the map below, not far from the towns of Shawneetown and New Wells.
Sophie was still alive in 1910, where we see her still living in Gustav’s household at the age of 87.
Sophie died in 1913. She lived long enough to have a death certificate recorded by the state of Missouri.
Sophie and her husband, Wilhelm, are both buried in the Grace Lutheran Upper Cemetery in Uniontown.
I have always been impressed by the fact that J.G. Hemmann was still fathering a child when he was 72 years old. The information in this post may get me to change that story. He may have been 74 years old when his last son was born.