Oregon’s Oetjen Cousins – Part 2

Yesterday’s post was about Henry Oetjen’s life story.  As Paul Harvey often said, “This is the rest of the story.”  Today, you get the story of Henry’s Oetjen cousins.  I am going to start with Friedrich (Fred) Oetjen today.

Friedrich Oetjen was born on April 7, 1887, one year after the birth of Henry.  Fred was the son of Johann and Maria (Luedemann) Oetjen.  As said yesterday, Fred’s father was one of three Oetjen siblings who came to America in the 1870’s and settled in the area near Christ Lutheran Church in Jacob, Illinois.  One of the unusual things is the fact that Johann Oetjen’s mother, Margaretha, was also a Luedemann.  Friedrich was baptized at Christ Lutheran Church.  We have his baptism record.

Fred Oetjen baptism record Christ Jacob IL
Freidrich Oetjen baptism record – Christ, Jacob, IL

Fred’s parents sold some land to Christ Lutheran Church for their sanctuary.

Johann and Mary Luedemann Oetjen

Not long after Fred was born, his father went into a retail merchandise business with Charles Nennert.  Their store was located near the Mississippi River.  I have this plat map for Fountain Bluff Township from the late 1800’s.  The map below shows property owned by Johann Oetjen and Johann Heeszel (who will show up later in this story).  I believe the Nennert Store may have been found in this vicinity of that township.

John Oetjen John Heeszel land map Fountain Bluff Township IL
Oetjen/Heeszel land map – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

We find Friedrich Oetjen in the 1900 census for Fountain Bluff Township.  This entry can be found two households above the one for Henry Oetjen’s household in that census.

Fred Oetjen 1900 census Fountain Bluff Township IL
1900 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

Although Henry Oetjen had moved to Oregon before the 1910 census, we still find Fred in that census living in Illinois.  In this entry, it says Johann was a salesman for a general store, and Fred was a house carpenter.

Fred Oetjen 1910 census Fountain Bluff Township IL
1910 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

It was between the 1910 and 1920 censuses that Fred moved to Oregon.  We know he was there by 1914, because we have an Oregon marriage record for him.  He married Emma Lulu Schwanke on November 26, 1914.  Emma Lulu Schwanke was born on February 9, 1889 in Martin County, Minnesota.  She was the daughter of William and Minnie (Heers) Schwanke.  The marriage record shown below gives Fred’s name as Fritz.

Oetjen Schwanke marriage record OR
Oetjen/Schwanke marriage record – Oregon

Fred had his World War I draft registration completed in 1917.  He was living in Corvallis, Oregon and working for the Southern Pacific Railroad.

Fred Oetjen – WWI draft registration

Fred and Emma had just one child, a daughter named Marie born in 1918.  We find the Fred Oetjen household in the 1920 census for Corvallis, Oregon.

Fred Oetjen 1920 census Corvallis OR
1920 census – Corvallis, OR

Yesterday, the 1920 census record showed Fred’s cousin, Henry, was also working for the railroad in that year.  We have this photo of Fred Oetjen which must have been taken at about this time in his life.

Friedrich Oetjen 1887 Jacob IL son of Johann
Fred Oetjen

We see Fred and his small family in the 1930 census.  This time he was a sawyer at a sawmill.  Yesterday, we saw that his cousin, Henry, was a fireman for a sawmill in 1930.

Fred Oetjen 1930 census Corvallis OR
1930 census – Corvallis, OR

The 1940 census shows a similar situation.  Their daughter, Marie, was found on the next page of the census which I did not display.  Fred and Henry seemed to follow each other in their occupations.

Fred Oetjen 1940 census Corvallis OR
1940 census – Corvallis, OR

The daughter, Marie, would marry Leeds Bailey.  Based on the photo below, Leeds was part of the Coast Guard at some point in his life.

Maria Oetjen and Leeds Bailey
Marie (Oetjen) and Leeds Bailey

Emma Oetjen died in 1970 at the age of 81; Fred Oetjen died in 1975 at the age of 88.  Like Fred’s cousin, these two were buried in the Zion Lutheran Cemetery in Corvallis.

Fred and Emma Oetjen gravestone Zion Corvallis OR
Fred and Emma Oetjen gravestone – Zion, Corvallis, OR

That’s not the end of the story.  Now we switch to a branch of the Oetjen family that took on the surname, Heeszel.  The sister of Johann and Friedrich (Henry’s father) Oetjen was Maria, who married Johann Heeszel.  It was the Johann Heeszel property that was shown in the earlier plat map of Fountain Bluff Township.  We have a photograph of that family.

Johann and Maria Oetjen Heeszel family
Johann Heeszel family

The oldest son, Johann Heeszel, Jr., spent some time in Corvallis, Oregon, although he is not buried there.  His story has already shown up on this blog.  His story was titled, The Miesner-Heeszel Partners.  John is probably the one standing in the back on the left in the above photo.

The two youngest girls in this family, Martha and Emma Heeszel, were two more Oetjen cousins that ended up in Corvallis, Oregon. Take a look at some records of communion attendance from the Christ Lutheran Church books from the year 1906.  It looks like John Heeszel left for Oregon in July of 1906.  His younger sister, Martha, looks to have left earlier than that.  Maybe Martha was the first cousin to move west.

Heeszel names 2 communicant list Christ Jacob IL

John Heeszel communion record Christ Jacob IL
Heeszel names – 1906 communicant list – Christ, Jacob, IL

Martha would later marry Ludwig Maschek in Oregon, but she would die at a very young age as a result of tuberculosis.  Here is her death certificate.

Martha Maschek Oregon death certificate
Martha Maschek death certificate

Martha was buried in the Zion Lutheran Cemetery in Corvallis.

Martha Maschek gravestone Zion Corvallis OR
Martha Maschek gravestone – Zion, Corvallis, OR

Emma Heeszel, the youngest daughter, also moved to Oregon and was married to Fritz Beck in 1912.  She died in 1957.  I can also show her death certificate.

Emma Heeszel Beck death certificate
Emma Beck death certificate

Emma is also buried in the Zion Lutheran Cemetery.

Emma Beck gravestone – Zion, Corvallis, OR

All together, I found 5 Oetjen cousins that spent some time in Corvallis, Oregon.  Four of them are buried in the same cemetery.



2 thoughts on “Oregon’s Oetjen Cousins – Part 2

  1. Greetings,
    I have been looking through my Grandparents 50 year anniversary book and found the Oetjen name.
    Mr. & Mrs. Henry Oetjen
    Mr. & Mrs. Fred Oetjen
    I am not sure if they are family or close church friends. My family has been very active in the Lutheran church.
    I also have photographs of
    Marie E. Oetjen at 7 months old
    One of Fritz, Emma and Marie Oetjen
    A younger (teen age?) Marie Oetjen.
    A very young photo of Emma Oetjen +Winnie.
    And a photo of Fritz Oetjen at 86.
    Ok…. based on the fact that we have these photos they must be family… but how?
    My Grandparents are Emil & Inga (Jacobsen) Hahn. (Franz & Wilhelmine (..?..) Hahn = Great grand parents)
    I see a name of Schwanke (sp?) who I think was Franz’s first wife.
    Since I just inherited a dresser full of photographs I thought I better get it organized.
    Just wondering the connection.
    Thanks for the help.
    Mel Hahn
    Corvallis Oregon


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