The Second Emilie Petzoldt

As promised, I will tell the story of another Emilie Petzoldt in today’s post. This one was not born a Petzoldt; she became a Petzoldt later. I pointed out yesterday, this is really the third Emilie Petzoldt because a post from a while back also included an Emilie Petzoldt. However, in the course of researching for today’s post, I discovered a fourth one.

First, though, I am going to let you know a little fact about the process I use to pick a story. As you have probably concluded, I look for a person who would be celebrating a special event on the day when I write the story. Usually, the event is a birth or a wedding. However, I usually limit my stories to people that were born prior to 1900. There is a reason for that. Because of privacy rights, there are documents that I cannot access. For example, I cannot access census records after 1940. Also, our German Family Tree is pretty much limited to include records for people that are no longer living. If I was to tell the story of someone born after 1900, I would be limited in discovering enough details about a person’s life to tell a complete story. On occasion, I do tell a more recent story, but when I do, it is usually because I can get a living person to provide some details. Today’s story is right on the cusp. You will find out that the two people highlighted today were born quite close to 1900. Even this story will limit me to only describe major details in the lives of the characters up to World War II. However, I felt compelled to write the story of a second Emilie Petzoldt in a row.

Lena Emilie Franke was born on May 3, 1897, so she is today’s birthday girl. If she was alive today, she would have to blow out 124 candles on her birthday cake. Emilie’s parents were Edward and Anna (Eggers) Franke. Her parents were members of Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown, so that is where we find Emilie’s baptism record. I find it quite interesting that the two female sponsors at Emilie’s baptism were also named Emilie. Emilie Franke was this child’s aunt, and that Emilie married a Hopfer the year after this baptism. Emilie Bachmann would most likely have been the wife of Joseph Bachmann. The Bachmann’s were also members of Grace, Uniontown.

Emilie Franke baptism record – Grace, Uniontown, MO

The German Family Tree lists 12 children born to Emilie’s parents. Several of them died as infants, and only one was a male who lived to adulthood. Emilie is found in her first census in 1900 where she is one of 5 daughters in the family. Her family was living in the Union Township of Perry County. Her father was a farmer.

1900 census – Union Township, MO

The 1910 census shows Emilie at the age of 12, and we finally see a son who is just 3 years old.

1910 census – Union Township, MO

Emilie’s father died in 1917, and her mother died in 1919, so when the 1920 census came out, we find this unusual Franke household which included Emilie. Her older sister, Amanda, was the head of the household, and she was said to be the farm operator in the occupation column which I did not display. Nearby was another Franke family. Arthur Franke was Emilie’s uncle.

1920 census – Union Township, MO

A year after that census, Emilie would get married, so let’s take a look at her future husband. His name was Theobald Petzoldt who was born in the 20th century. His birthday was April 26, 1901. That made him 4 years younger than Emilie. Theobald’s parents were Frederick and Linda (Bodenschatz) Petzoldt. Frederick Petzoldt was the son of Friedrich Florian (The Face) Petzoldt, so Theobald was a grandson of The Face. We affectionatly call him The Face because of his gravestone shown below.

Friedrich Florian Petzoldt gravestone – Immanuel, Altenburg, MO

Theobald was baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Altenburg. Here is his baptism record from that church’s books. I have to display it in two images.

Theobald Petzoldt baptism record – Immanuel, Altenburg, MO

Theobald was the last of 8 children in this Petzoldt family. A photograph was taken of the Frederick Petzoldt family when Theobald was quite young. He would be the youngest boy standing in front.

Frederick Petzoldt family

We find Theobald in his first census in 1910 when he was 9 years old. His father was a farmer.

1910 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Next, we find Theobald in the 1920 census at the age of 18.

1920 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Theobald Petzoldt married Emilie Franke on September 4, 1921. Thus began the life of another Emilie Petzoldt. This couple was married at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown. Below is the church record for that wedding.

Petzoldt/Franke marriage record – Grace, Uniontown, MO

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

Petzoldt/Franke marriage license

This pair had 5 children. The first child died after just one day, and the last child was stillborn. So, only 3 children lived to adulthood. The 1930 census shows this Petzoldt household where it shows them living with Theobald’s parents. Theobald was a farmer.

1930 census – Brazeau Township, MO

I assume that Theobald was farming the land said to belong to Fred Petzoldt shown in the 1915 plat maps.

Fred Petzoldt land map – 1915

The Petzoldt family is next found in the 1940 census. This was another census entry that was difficult to find because Ancestry transcribes his surname as Ditzell.

1940 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Emilie Petzoldt died in 1956 at the age of 58. Her death certificate says she died at Cape Osteopathic Hospital. Her death record from the books of Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg says she died of a heart attack.

Emilie Petzoldt death certificate

Somewhere along the line, the Petzoldt’s must have become members of Trinity, Altenburg, because that is where Emilie was buried. Her birth year is incorrect on both her death certificate and her gravestone. She was baptized in 1897.

Emilie Petzoldt gravestone – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

When I looked at the Trinity cemetery on Findagrave, I found two Emilie Petzoldt’s. The other one in that cemetery is the 4th Emilie Petzoldt.

Sometime after Emilie died, Theobald married again, although I could not locate either a church record or civil record for that wedding. His second wife was Bertha Schuppan. As near as I can tell, it was Bertha’s only marriage. The Schuppan’s were located in the New Wells area, and that probably explains the fact that when Theobald died in 1984, he was buried in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in New Wells. Bertha was also buried in that cemetery.

I am going to end this story by pointing out another fact that fascinates me about this story. Take a look at the gravestones of Theobald’s two wives side-by-side.

What are the chances that Theobald’s two wives each had birth and death days that were the 3rd day of the month?


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