A Set of Moldenhauer Twins

Albert Fritz Moldenhauer arrived in America in 1871 according to a couple of census records. He then married the widow, Margaret (Linz) Hoehn in 1879. The story of Fritz and Margaret was told in the post, Menfro Moldenhauer’s. We have these photos of Fritz and Margaret.

That previous post mentioned that this couple had two sets of twins. The first children born into this family in 1880 was a set of twins, and it is that set of twins that will be the subjects of today’s post.

Friedrich Carl (Charles) Georg and Pauline Moldenhauer were born on April 22, 1880, making today their 141st birthdays. These two were baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Perryville. A binder we have in our research library for that congregation lists baptisms in alphabetical order, so we can take a look at all the Moldenhauer’s that were baptized at that church in one place. They are displayed below.

Moldenhauer baptism names – Immanuel, Perryville, MO

I will attack each twin separately, beginning with Charles. He is found in the census taken during the year of his birth, 1880. This is the only census in which we find both Charles and Pauline. The family was living in the Central Township of Perry County. It says the father, Fritz, worked at a sawmill. Two of Margaret’s sons from her previous marriage are included in this household.

1880 census – Central Township, MO

A photo was taken of the sawmill operated by Fritz Moldenhauer in about 1898. It is said to be located in Menfro, Missouri. Charles is said to be one of the young men in the photo, but I do not know which one.

Moldenhauer Sawmill

The plat map including A.F. Moldenhauer’s property was produced later in 1915 showing them living near Menfro.

A.F. Moldenhauer land map 1915

The next census in which we find Charles was the one taken in 1900. Now, the family was located in the Bois Brule Township and his father is called a farmer. Perhaps he was both a farmer and a sawmill operator. Charles’s twin sister is not found in the household list.

1900 census – Bois Brule Township, MO

Charles never married, so we see him in the household with his father for several years. His mother, Margaret, died in 1905, so she is not found in the next census taken in 1910. However, we do see that his father had married again. His second wife was Sarah Sumpter. Charles was a 30 year-old farm laborer.

1910 census – Bois Bruhl Township, MO

I think it must have been about this time that the photograph shown below was taken of Charles.

Charles Moldenhauer

Charles had his World War I draft registration completed in 1918. This form gives us an explanation why the handsome young man shown in the photo above was never married. It states that Charles was “mentally deficient”. This form also had the registrar note that he witnessed the signature on this document. That is not something common.

Charles Moldenhauer – WWI draft registration

We find Charles next in the 1920 census. This time, Charles was living in the household of his brother, Henry Moldenhauer. Charles was a laborer on his brother’s farm.

1920 census – Bois Brule Township, MO

When the 1930 census was taken, Charles was living in the household of a different brother, John Moldenhauer.

1930 census – Bois Brule Township, MO

I was unable to find Charles in the 1940 census. Charles died in 1956 not long before his 76th birthday. We can take a look at his death certificate. It says he died in rural Salem Township.

Charles Moldenhauer death certificate

Charles Moldenhauer is buried in the Bethlehem Baptist Cemetery in Crosstown, Missouri. I found 6 gravesites in that cemetery that included the surname Moldenhauer, including Charles’s father.

Charles Moldenhauer gravestone – Bethlehem, Crosstown, MO

Now, we will discuss the twin sister, Pauline. Her documentation in our German Family Tree had me stumped. In addition to her baptism record, there was a confirmation record from Cross Congregation near Longtown. Her name is included in the confirmation class of 1895, but her twin brother is not included.

Pauline Moldenhauer confirmation record – Cross Congregation, Longtown, MO

I was about to give up on finding any more information about Pauline, thinking that she probably died at an early age, but then I received some information from Trish Erzfeld, the Perry County Tourism Director, who is a descendant from the Moldenhauer family. She provided me with the death certificate for Pauline which is displayed below. Her married name was Pauline Thomas and she died in 1937 at the age of 57. She died in St. Louis.

Pauline Thomas death certificate

This document led me on another search, this time for the name of Pauline’s husband, Otto Thomas. As it turns out, I was not successful at finding out much about him either. However, one thing I did find was his death certificate, which I found interesting. Otto died in Perry County in 1930 at the age of 49. It says he died in the Bois Brule Township, which is where the Moldenhauer’s lived. I found no evidence that Otto ever lived in Perry County, so I am suspecting that he died while visiting in this area. This document has some incomplete information, including the fact that it doesn’t mention his wife’s name. It also says he was going to be buried in St. Louis.

Otto Thomas death certificate

I did find that both Otto and Pauline were buried in the St. Marcus Cemetery in Afton, Missouri. They both have entries on Findagrave.com, but only Pauline has a photo of her gravestone.

Pauline Thomas gravestone – St. Marcus, Afton, MO

The above gravestone says Pauline was a mother. The informant on Pauline’s death certificate, Martha Gonso, is likely her daughter.

I suspect that sometime in the future, you may see another post published on this blog with a title like, Another Set of Moldenhauer Twins.


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