About two years ago, I wrote a post titled, Engert the Egger. In that post, it was mentioned that there were two Gustav Adolf Engert’s that were born only 6 years apart, one born in 1869, and the other in 1875. The two Engert boys were even cousins. The previous post was devoted to the one born in 1869. Today, I will focus on the one born in 1875. In the process of researching this Gustav Adolf Engert, I discovered another similarity between these two. They both married girls named Martha. That makes it even more important to be careful not to confuse these two. However, there is an important difference that makes things easier. One of these Engert boys went by the name Adolph, and the other went by the name Gustav. It is Gustav that we look at today.
I will start like I did when I wrote the previous article. I will show the baptism records of these two Engert babies. Both were baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Altenburg. First, here is Adolph’s.
Next, here is the one for today’s character, Gustav Adolf Engert, the son of Gotthilf and Anna Marie (Gerler) Engert. He was born on October 29, 1875, making today his 145th birthday.
Gustav is found in his first census in 1880 at the age of 5. His father was a farmer. Gustav was the second of 10 children in his Engert family.
Since Gustav got married in 1898, the above census was the only one we can view where he is a single man. His wife was Martha Hellwege who was born on February 22, 1879. She was the daughter of Henry and Minna (Rettig) Hellwege and baptized at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna. Below is her baptism record.
Martha was the oldest child in a family of 8 children. She is the only one found in her first census in 1880 at the age of 1.
The Hellwege family must have moved closer to Altenburg, because in 1892, Martha was confirmed at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. Then, when we find Gustav Engert and Martha Hellwege getting married in 1898, that wedding took place at Trinity. These two were married two days after Christmas on December 27, 1898. Below is this couple’s marriage license.
We can also take a look at the church marriage record from Trinity’s books.
We find the Gustav Engert household in the 1900 census where Gustav is called a farm laborer. August Leimbach was also living in their household, and he was also called a farm laborer.
Next, we find the Engert’s in the 1910 census, only this time we find some children in their family. Our German Family Tree says this couple had 8 children. All of those children were baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Altenburg. Their first and last children died as infants, so 6 children lived to adulthood, and 5 of those 6 were girls. In the 1910 census, Gustav was said to be a laborer at a saw mill.
In 1917 or 1918, Gustav had his World War I draft registration completed. It says his employer was August Leimbach, who is probably the same person that was living in his household back in 1900.
We find the Engert family once again in the 1920 census for Brazeau Township. This time, Gustav was called a laborer at a creamery.
The Engert family relocated before the 1930 census. They were living in Somerset Township, Illinois which is located near Murphysboro. Gustav was a laborer at a truck farm.
Another change took place before the 1940 census, which finds this couple living in Pike County, Missouri where Gustav was a farmer. Gustav and Martha had an empty nest. This entry also said that in 1935, this couple had been living in the St. Louis area.
Another quite drastic move was made not long after the above census. A city directory for 1943 shows them living in San Diego, California.
A California voters registration list shows both Gustav and Martha in San Diego. Their daughter, Laura, is also shown here as living at the same address. I am thinking there is the possibility that Laura may have moved to San Diego prior to her parents.
Martha died in 1946 at the age of 67. A California death index gives some information about her death. Several of the facts listed here give proof that this is indeed the right Martha Engert.
Gustav Engert died on Christmas Eve in 1951 at the age of 76. We can also look at a similar California death index for him.
Findagrave.com has entries for both Gustav and Martha, but that site says that Martha’s remains are somewhere in San Diego County, and Gustav was cremated in San Bernardino County.
Gustav and Martha spent much of their lives in Perry County. However, once they left this area, there was a time when they did not stay in the same place for very long. Their final move to California placed them quite a distance away from their hometown. If you look at what happened to their children, you will discover several of them ended up out west.