Clara Thieret is today’s birthday girl. While looking into her story, I ran into a few interesting connections. One was that her grandmother’s surname was Lang. If you go another generation back, you find that her great great grandmother was Barbara Katherine Schmeuszer, who was the daughter of Count Schmeuszer. I found this paragraph in a life history of the man that Barbara Schmeuszer married, Peter Lang.
As you see, Clara Thieret was the great great great granddaughter of a Count. However, several generations earlier, that Count had disinherited Clara’s branch of that Schmeuszer family.
Peter would later bring his family to America. They traveled to this country aboard the Goethe in 1855. Here is the passenger list for this family.
Several of Peter Lang’s children were already in America before he came to join them. Peter had developed pneumonia, beginning back in Germany right before they left, and it got worse on the journey. As their boat was traveling through Cairo, Illinois on their trip to Perry County, Peter died and was buried in the Hillside Cemetery.
One of the children who came to the United States before her parents was Maria Lang, who had married Christoph Thieret in Germany before traveling to America aboard the Elise in 1851. We can view that passenger list.
The next branch of the Thieret family goes through Friedrich Karl Thieret, who would marry Barbara Hoehn. It was their daughter, Clara Thieret, who is today’s birthday girl. She was born on August 15, 1874, so today would have been her 146th birthday. She was baptized at Peace Lutheran Church in Friedenberg, so we do not have an image of her baptism record.
Clara can be found in the 1880 census for Union Township at the age of 5. Her father was a grocer. This portion of that year’s census was not lost like so many other pages of the Union Township census records were.
Next, we turn our attention to Clara’s future husband, Charles (Carl) Springer. He was the son of Friedrich (Fritz) and Mary (Karling) Springer and born on April 3, 1868. Like Clara, he was baptized at Peace, Friedenberg. A story has been posted on this blog, Fritz from France, the Perryville Painter, telling the story of Charles’s parents. Charles is found in the 1870 census at the age of 2.
Charles is found again in the 1880 census. In 1871, when his mother gave birth to twin girls, who both died right away, she also died leaving Fritz a widower. In this census, we see Fritz married to Anna Bergmann.
On March 25, 1894, Charles Springer married Clara Thieret at Peace, Friedenberg. We can take a look at the marriage license for this couple.
According to our German Family Tree, Charles and Clara had 8 children, a few of which died early. The first 5 of these children were baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Perryville. The 1900 census shows this family living in Perryville where Charles was called a town watchman. By that time, there were two children in their household.
When a child was born in 1908, he was baptized at Zion Lutheran Church in Longtown, Missouri. This gets us back to the surname, Lang. One story explaining the naming of the town name, Longtown, was that it was named after John Lang, Peter Lang’s brother. That story indicates the name began as Langtown, but later morphed into Longtown.
In the 1910 census, we find Charles and his family living in Longtown where he was working as a bartender in a saloon.
I figure there is a good chance that Charles worked in the saloon operated by his Uncle George Springer. Here is an 1895 advertisement that was found in the booklet, East of Eden, for Geo. Springer’s business in Longtown.
The 1920 census shows Charles and his family still living in Longtown and working as an agent with a creamery.
Charles Springer died in 1923 at the age of 55. Below is his death certificate.
Clara was living with two of her daughters in Perryville in 1930.
Clara Springer died in 1960 at the age of 86. Her death certificate says she died in the Deal Nursing Home in Jackson, Missouri.
Charles and Clara Springer are buried together in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in Perryville.
So there you have it. I’ll take a few liberties and call it the story of Countess Clara of Perry County.