If he was alive today, Otto Friedrich Tirmenstein would be celebrating his 150th birthday. He was born on April 23, 1870 in St. Louis, Missouri. Otto was the son of Samuel Martin and Dorothea (Doerries) Tirmenstein and baptized at Old Trinity Lutheran Church. I have a few photos of Otto’s parents.
Otto can already be found as an infant in the 1870 census. I seem to be writing plenty of stories lately about the last child born into a family, and Otto is another one of them. Otto’s father was a manufacturer of tin ware.
The 1880 census shows Otto’s mother as the head of the household because Samuel Martin Tirmenstein had died in 1875. Otto was 10 years old in this entry.
Now let’s turn our attention to Otto’s future wife. Her name was Louise Steinmeyer, the daughter of Heinrich and Anna (Wehner) Steinmeyer. She was born on August 9, 1873. I am unaware of where she was baptized. I was able to find quite a few people with the Steinmeyer surname in the Old Trinity Lutheran Church books, but not Louise’s family. Louise was not the youngest child in her family. In fact, she was the oldest.
We find Louise in her first census in 1880. Her father was a baker. In fact, I found evidence that there was once a Steinmeyer & Son Bakery in St. Louis that had two locations. This entry also shows two young men living in their household that apparently worked at the Steinmeyer Bakery.
On April 20, 1897, Otto Tirmenstein married Louise Steinmeyer at Old Trinity Lutheran Church. The church record in the Old Trinity books says this couple was married at 7:30 p.m. April 20th was a Tuesday in 1897. I find it unusual that a couple would get married on a Tuesday evening at 7:30 p.m. I also find it interesting that both of their surnames included “Stein”, which in German means stone. Since I know this pair remained faithful to one another until death, I would declare this to be a rock-solid marriage.
I do not have a wedding photograph for this couple, but I was able to find several individual photos of each of them. I will display them in a gallery here. They are each shown at different ages. I attempted to get them in order from youngest to oldest. These thumbnails can be clicked to enlarge.
The 1900 census is the first one in which we find this couple. Otto was a bookbinder. I happen to know that he performed that function at Concordia Publishing House (CPH).
You will see two boys in the Tirmenstein family in the above entry. Otto and Louise had 4 children, two boys followed by two girls. The oldest son was an Otto, Jr. Then the second one was named Paul Gerhardt Tirmenstein. I believe Paul was named after the famous pastor and hymn writer from the 1600’s. Our present Lutheran Service Book (published by CPH) has 17 hymns in it that were written by Paul Gerhardt.
The next census we can view is the one produced in 1910. Now we can also see the two girls in the family. Their oldest girl was named after her mother, Louise. Otto was once again called a bookbinder for a publishing company.
Next, we can take a look at this family in the 1920 census. I did not display it, but it stated that Otto was a foreman in a bookbinding company.
Otto and Louise should be found in the 1930 and 1940 censuses, but I was unable to find them. I suspect it had something to do with misspelling Tirmenstein. I did find this entry in a 1933 city directory for St. Louis which states that Otto was a department manager at CPH.
Otto Tirmenstein died in 1948 at the age of 77. We have his death certificate.
I find it interesting that Dr. G.M. Schuricht signed off on this death certificate. There are plenty of Schuricht/Tirmenstein connections in the early history of St. Louis Lutheranism. Dr. Schuricht was also married to an Estel who was another descendant from the 1839 immigration.
The address shown on this certificate is 6069 Wanda Ave. We can view a photo of what that house looks like today.
Louise Tirmenstein died in 1963 at the age of 89. We can also view her death certificate.
Otto and Louise are buried in the Our Redeemer Cemetery in Afton, Missouri.
If you are a regular reader of this blog, you may already know that Otto was not the only Tirmenstein with connections to Concordia Publishing House. Otto’s older brother, Martin Tirmenstein, was the general manager at CPH, and Rev. Bernhard Ansorge was once a proofreader at that company. Rev. Ansorge’s wife was Otto’s sister, Concordia Tirmenstein. If you would like to read the stories already written about those two individuals, you can click on the link shown here:
If you put the name Tirmenstein into Google Translate, it will give the result, company stone. I would say that means that Concordia Publishing House is a company that “rocks”.