Hadeler, Hadler, or Hatler?

Diedrich Hadeler brought his family to America in 1868, and his descendants are still quite numerous in East Perry County to this day. The spelling of this surname has gone through a few changes over the years since that family arrived. First, let’s look at Diedrich’s baptism record from Lamstedt, Germany. He was born on July 13, 1823, the son of Claus and Marie (Corleis) Hadeler. You can see that the spelling of his surname is indeed Hadeler.

Diedrich Hadeler baptism record – Lamstedt, Germany

Diedrich and his wife, Marie Katherine (Dammann) Hadeler made the voyage across the Atlantic Ocean aboard the ship, Hermine. The passenger list for that ship also records the surname as Hadeler.

Hadeler family – Hermine passenger list 1868

However, I know of no one with the Hadeler spelling that descended from Diedrich and Marie. It is either spelled Hadler or Hatler, and most of them are Hadler’s. I will add that I know many old-timers that still pronounce their “d’s” just like “t’s”. Today, though, you will read about one of the sons of the Hadeler’s who ended up using the Hatler spelling. He is the one year-old Herman Hadeler shown on the above image.

Herman Hatler was born on May 31, 1867. After his family’s arrival, we find Herman in his first census when one was recorded in 1870. His family was living in the Brazeau Township of Perry County, Missouri. Herman was 3 years old when this census was taken. His family’s surname is really butchered by this census taker.

1870 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Herman’s mother died in 1872, and his father must have found it necessary to “farm out” his children. When the 1880 census came out, we find a 13 year-old Herman Hatler living in the Herman Gerth family in the Apple Creek Township of Cape Girardeau County.

1880 census – Apple Creek Township, MO

His surname was spelled Hodler on the above form. At this time in their lives, the Gerth’s were members of Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells, and that is where Herman was confirmed in 1881. On this confirmation record, his name is spelled Hadler.

Herman Hatler confirmation record – Immanuel, New Wells, MO

Now, we need to turn our attention to Herman’s future bride, Katherine Caroline Elise “Lena” Mueller. There are many rather large Mueller clans found in this area including 4 different Mueller families that were original 1839 immigrants. However, Lena’s father seems to be “one of a kind”. I can find no connection between Wilhelm Mueller and any of those large Mueller clans. Lena’s mother was Louise (Schoenebeck) Mueller. Lena has a very special birthday today because she was born on March 18, 1871, 150 years ago. Lena’s baptism record is not found in our German Family Tree so I do not know where she was baptized. It must not have been long after her birth that Lena’s father died because in 1873, his mother was getting married again. Her second husband was Charles Tuschoff. I was not able to find Lena in the 1880 census, but I did locate the Tuschoff household in the 1876 Missouri state census for Cape Girardeau County. She is not listed as being a Mueller in this entry. I think Lena is the one on this form called Caroline.

1876 census – Cape Girardeau County, MO

Herman Hatler married Lena Mueller on October 30, 1890. Their marriage license says they were married by a pastor of a church in Oak Ridge, Missouri. I could find no evidence of a Lutheran church in Oak Ridge, so I think this wedding must have taken place in a different denomination church. At this point, this document indicates Herman may have begun using the Hatler spelling for his surname.

Hatler/Mueller marriage license

The German Family Tree says that this couple had 8 children. The first 2 children were baptized at Immanuel, New Wells. Then their next children from 1896-1912 were baptized at Zion Lutheran Church in Pocahontas. Their last child born in 1916 was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Point Rest, Missouri, indicating that the family had moved to Perry County. The 1900 census shows the Hatler family living in the Shawnee Township of Cape Girardeau County.

1900 census – Shawnee Township, MO

Herman is called a farmer in the above census, but we have evidence that he was also involved in mail delivery in 1903.

Herman Hatler – mail contractor 1903

The 1910 census shows this Hatler household. There were 6 children in the family.

1910 census – Shawnee Township, MO

It would be the 1920 census when we first find the Hatler family living in the Bois Brule Township of Perry County. We see that Herman’s occupation had also changed. Now, he was called a blacksmith. A young man with the surname Schindler was called his partner in the blacksmith business in this entry.

1920 census – Bois Brule Township, MO

We find Herman and Lena in the 1930 census once again in the Bois Brule Township. In 1927, a massive flood took place in the river bottoms, which is probably where the Hatler farm and the village of Point Rest was located. In this census, it says Herman was a laborer for levee construction. The construction of levees must have been a response to that flood.

1930 census – Bois Brule Township, MO

We no longer see the Hatler couple living in the river bottoms in the 1940 census. They were living in Menfro, where you find the beginnings of the hilly area that is prominent in East Perry County. At the age of 72, Herman no longer listed an occupation. Two older Hatler children were still living in his household.

1940 census – Menfro, MO

I figure the two photographs I found of Herman and Lena must have been taken at about this time in their lives. One of these photos looks like it may have been taken at a 50th wedding anniversary, which would have taken place in 1940.

Herman Hatler died in 1945 at the age of 77. His death certificate mentions stomach cancer as a cause of death.

Herman Hatler death certificate

Lena Hatler died in 1957 at the age of 86. Her death certificate says she died at the Perry County Memorial Hospital. It is this document that is important at giving us facts that cannot be found elsewhere. This is the only document I looked at that gives Lena’s birthday. It also provides the name of her father and her mother’s maiden name.

Lena Hatler death certificate

Herman and Lena Hatler are each buried in the Point Rest Lutheran Cemetery in Menfro.

Although there were some documents that spelled Herman and Lena’s surname differently, I put a lot of stock in how someone’s name is spelled on their gravestones. I figure this is how they wanted their name spelled most of their lives. In addition to this, there are several documents for this couple’s children, like their sons’ military draft forms, that have the Hatler spelling.


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