Martin and Martha

It seems like I am drawn to Shawnee Township in northern Cape Girardeau County to locate stories for this blog lately. That is the case once again today in which we find records in the books of Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells. Yesterday’s post, Martin and Phoebe, turned out to be a case in which both of the main characters spent their whole lives from birth to death in that congregation. Today’s story doesn’t quite fulfill those requirements, but it comes close. Plus, I didn’t expect another story that highlighted a “Martin”, and this one not only repeats that name, but also his spouse’s name which is very similar. She was a “Martha”.

It is the “Martha” that is our birthday girl for this post. Her first name was definitely Martha, but I found that her surname was the subject for a little debate. I found places that called her Martha Vogt, Martha Vagts, and Martha Vogts. I think there are enough records that use the surname, Vagts, that lead me to go with that one. Martha is the person in this story that did not have her beginnings at Immanuel, New Wells. Martha was born on December 20, 1870, so today would have been a very special birthday for her. She would have been 150 years old today. Martha was born in Germany, and her death certificate states that her father’s name was Wilhelm Vagts and her mother’s maiden name was Henn. Martha arrived on the scene relatively late when compared to many others who are discussed on this blog. Her entry in the 1910 census says she immigrated to America in 1886 when she would have been about 16 years old. Because of her late arrival, we do not see her in a census record until after she was married.

Now, we will take a look at the “Martin”. His name was Martin Haertling, who was the second-born son of Herman and Sophia (Koenig) Haertling. Martin was born on March 18, 1870 and baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells. Below is an image of his baptism record.

Martin Haertling baptism record – Immanuel, New Wells, MO

I looked for Martin Haertling in the 1870 and 1880 censuses, but came up empty. Martin’s parents had gotten to America around 1866, so by all rights, they should be found in those census records, but I could not find them.

Martin Haertling married Martha Vagts on November 5, 1891. We can view the church record for that wedding from the books of Immanuel, New Wells.

Haertling/Vagts marriage record – Immanuel, New Wells, MO

We can also take a look at this couple’s marriage license.

Haertling/Vagts marriage license

We have this wedding photograph of Martin and Martha.

Martin and Martha Haertling wedding

We find this Haertling couple for the first time in the 1900 census for Shawnee Township. Martin and Martha were living in the household of William and Martha Dickmann. Our German Family Tree shows 8 children born to this pair, with two of them dying right away. Three of those children are already found in this 1900 census entry.

1900 census – Shawnee Township, MO

I found some evidence that Martha Dickmann’s maiden name was Henn, so that is probably where the connection is between these Dickmann’s and Haertling’s.

Not long before the above census, a photograph was taken at a Haertling family reunion. If it was taken on the occasion of Martin’s parents’ 30th anniversary, then this photo would have been taken in 1896. Martin and Martha are shown on the left side holding their first two sons, Benjamin and Otto, on their laps.

The next census taken in 1910 shows the following household. I have included the household of Martin’s younger brother, Wilhelm, and his family, so they were likely living nearby. You can also see Wilhelm Dickmann and his wife in this household. They are called father and mother-in-law, but I don’t think that’s the case, unless Martha’s mother had re-married Wilhelm Dickmann at some point in time. I found no documentation for such an event.

1910 census – Shawnee Township, MO

We find the Haertling family in the 1920 census, once again living in the Shawnee Township.

1920 census – Shawnee Township, MO

We see another version of the “Haertling Neighborhood” in the 1930 census. William, Martin’s brother, is on the list, along with one of his sons, Eldor and his wife. Underneath Martin’s household, you see one of his sons, Otto.

1930 census – Shawnee Township, MO

Plat maps were produced for Cape Girardeau County in 1930, and we find a parcel of land in the name of M.A. Haertling. You can see other parcels with the Haertling name in the neighborhood.

M.A. Haertling land map – 1930

The last census we can view is the one taken in 1940.

1940 census – Shawnee Township, MO

A photo was taken of the Martin and Martha Haertling family somewhere along the line.

Martin and Martha Haertling family

Martha Haertling died in 1945 at the age of 74. Her death certificate is where we find her parents’ names.

Martha Haertling death certificate

Later in his life, another photo was taken of Martin Haertling.

Martin Haertling

Martin died in 1960 at the age of 90. We can also look at his death certificate.

Martin Haertling death certificate

Martin and Martha Haertling are buried in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in New Wells.

So, Martin and Martha, may not have each been born and confirmed at Immanuel, New Wells, but they were married, raised a family, died, and were buried at that congregation. You now have had two straight stories in which the couples spent their lives attending worship services at that church for many, many years.

3 thoughts on “Martin and Martha

  1. Hi Warren,
    Thanks for your blog which I recently heard about. I find them very interesting as well as helping me learn what life was like for my great grandfather Hinrich (Henry) Dreyer who lived in Altenburg. I did find a Federal Census record for Martin and his family in 1880 which you might be interested in:

    The census taker (as sometimes happens wrote the name down incorrectly). You may also be aware that Herman and his family appear in the Missouri State Census records in both 1868 and 1876.

    Tom Dreyer


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