The Wittenberg Telle’s

First, I must confess how I was attracted to one of today’s characters.  I was looking for an event that took place on Christmas Eve.  During my search, I discovered a birthday boy whose middle name was Rudolph.  So off I went.  I knew I wouldn’t find a man with a red nose, but I was hoping for some reference that could be related to Christmas.  This man worked for the railroad for a while, so I thought maybe I could use the phrase, “won’t you guide my train tonight?”  He also worked at a quarry, so I thought maybe he would “rock around the Christmas tree”.  However, especially since this man never went by the name, Rudolph, I decided all of these things were too corny, even for me.  I’ll tell his story anyway.

Albert Rudolph Telle was born on December 24, 1894, the son of Gottfried and Martha (Frentzel) Telle.  Albert was baptized at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown.  Below is his baptism record.  Even though he was born in 1894, Albert was not baptized until 1895.

Albert Telle baptism record Grace Uniontown MO
Albert Telle baptism record – Grace, Uniontown, MO

We first find Albert in the 1900 census for Union Township in Perry County.  Albert was 5 years old.

Albert Telle 1900 census Union Township MO
1900 census – Union Township, MO

Albert grew up on a farm located along the Apple Creek near Uniontown.  We see his father’s land on this 1915 map.

G B Telle land map 1915
G.B. Telle land map – 1915

Albert’s future wife was born in 1895.  Lydia Noennig was born on September 21, 1895, the daughter of Gottfried and Emma (Kuehnert) Noennig.  We have this photo of Lydia’s parents.

Gottfried and Emma Noennig

Lydia was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg.  Here is her baptism record.

Lydia Noennig baptism record Trinity Altenburg MO
Lydia Noennig baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

Lydia’s father had farmland north of Altenburg when this map was produced in 1915.

Noennig Kuehnert land 1915 Noennig Kuehnert
Gottfried Noennig land map – 1915

The Noennig homestead can be seen in the photo below.  Later, this family would move into the town of Altenburg.

Noennig homestead rural Altenburg

We find Lydia in the 1900 census for Brazeau Township.  Lydia was 4 years old.

Lydia Noennig 1900 census Brazeau Township MO
1900 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Let’s take a look at how these two were described in 1910.  Both of them continued to live in the same location as before.  First, here is the entry for Albert who was a 15 year-old farm laborer.

Albert Telle 1910 census Union Township MO
1910 census – Union Township, MO

Lydia was a 14 year-old girl in 1910.

Lydia Noennig 1910 census Brazeau Township MO
1910 census – Brazeau Township, MO

In 1916, Lydia’s sister, Bertha Noennig, got married.  Lydia can be seen as part of Bertha’s wedding party.  Lydia is standing behind the flower girl.

William and Bertha Doering wedding party
Doering/Noennig wedding party

The above photo was taken in front of the Theodore Noennig home in the town of Altenburg.  That home was next door to the Gottfried Noennig home which is shown below.

Gottfried Noennig Altenburg town home
Gottfried Noennig home – Altenburg

Below are photos of Theodore Noennig’s house (on the left) and Gottfried Noennig’s house (on the right) that I took today.

I have learned to notice slight differences in the ornamentation on the front porches so I can identify the several photos we have that were taken in front of these two homes.

Before the 1920 census was made, Albert had his World War I draft registration completed in 1917.  This document states that Albert lived in Uniontown, but worked at the Miessner Lumber & Manufacturing Company (a.k.a. the swing factory) in Wittenberg.

Albert Telle – WWI draft registration

The distance from where Albert lived in Uniontown to where he worked in Wittenberg was about 13 miles.  I cannot imagine Albert would have made that trip by horseback or horse and buggy.  It makes more sense to me that he would have made the trip by automobile.  A few years ago, we had a Model T club visit our museum.  Perhaps Albert had an automobile similar to the one shown here.

Model T Ford at museum

I want to point out one more thing you can see on Albert’s WWI draft registration.  On the line behind the question, “Do you claim an exemption….”, Albert had the words written, “No drafting”.  In a previous post that I wrote about Albert’s brother, Adolph Telle, titled, Nice Try, Adolph, he had tried the same thing.  In that post, I displayed this image.

Adolph Telle draft excuse

As it turned out, neither one of these Telle boys was successful at avoiding being drafted.  They both ended up being inducted into the same unit on June 23, 1918 and sent off to Camp Pike in Arkansas.  When they were about to depart Perryville, the photo below was taken on the courthouse steps.

Perry County boys WWI Albert and Adolph Telle

I will display a photo of Albert later, and based on that photo, I think Albert may be the one sitting in front, third from the left, holding his hat on his knee.  If that is the case, his brother, Adolph, may one of the men sitting next to him.  Feel free to disagree with me.

Here is Albert’s military record.  It appears that he did not get sent overseas.

Albert Telle WWI military record
Albert Telle military record – WWI

The 1920 census shows both Albert and Lydia as still being single.  First, here is the census record for Albert.  This is another document that shows Albert living in Union Township, but also working as a manager of the swing factory in Wittenberg.

Albert Telle 1920 census Union Township MO
1920 census – Union Township, MO

Next, we see Lydia listed with her parents in Altenburg.  However, it has her name as well as her sister, Emma’s, crossed out, and for location, it says, “in St. Louis”.  I looked, but could not find Lydia in a St. Louis census for that year.

Lydia Noennig 1920 census Brazeau Township MO
1920 census – Brazeau Township, MO

On May 22, 1921, Albert Telle married Lydia Noennig at Trinity Lutheran Church.  Here is their marriage license.

Albert Telle Lydia Noennig marriage license
Telle/Noennig marriage license

We also have the church record for that wedding.

Telle Noennig marriage record Trinity Altenburg MO
Telle/Noennig marriage record –  Trinity, Altenburg, MO

The swing factory would close, so in the 1930 census, we find Albert with a different occupation.  He was working at the quarry in Wittenberg.  By that time, Albert and Lydia had all three of their children.

Albert Telle 1930 census Brazeau Township MO
1930 census – Brazeau Township, MO

In 1935, Lydia’s parents celebrated their 50th anniversary and had a family photograph taken in front of their house.  I have indicated Lydia and Albert with a red box, and their 3 children with blue arrows.

Gottfried Noennig family 50th anniversary Albert Telle family members

Albert was shown in a photograph of the church officers at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Wittenberg in 1939.

St. Paul Wittenberg officers 1939 Albert Telle

The 1940 census once again shows Albert with a different occupation.  This time he is listed as a farm laborer.

Albert Telle 1940 census Brazeau Township MO
1940 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Albert and his family lived on the north side of Highway A as you entered Wittenberg.  It is shown on the aerial photo below as #7.

Highway A Wittenberg MO Albert Telle

When Albert Telle had his World War II draft card filled out in 1942, it said he was working for the Frisco Railroad.

Albert Telle – WWII draft card

One of Albert and Lydia’s sons, Clinton “Scotty” Telle, recently died.  When I first arrived here in Altenburg back in 2010, Scotty was a regular attender at our church’s Sunday morning Bible study.

Lydia Telle died in 1979 at the age of 84.  Two years later, Albert died.  Albert has a death certificate from the state of Texas.  I figure he must have been staying with one of his children after his wife died.  The death certificate says Albert was a maintenance supervisor for a seminary.  It lists him as being from St. Louis.  I like to think that Albert had been working on the campus of Concordia Seminary, but I am not certain of that.

Albert Telle Texas death certificate
Albert Telle – Texas death certificate

Both Albert and Lydia are buried in the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis.

Albert Telle certainly had his share of jobs over the years.  I guess you could say to a certain extent that he was like Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.  He did what he had to do at the time it needed to be done.



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 )

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