The narrative today begins with the birth of Magdalena Meyer, who was born on June 16, 1843. That makes today her 178th birthday. She was the daughter of Johann and Margaretha (Maisel) Meyer. Her baptism record is included in the books of Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown, but a short bio that is found in the book, Friedenberg Remembrances, says that she was baptized by Rev. Gruber in the “church house” that was used for worship in the Friedenberg area before they were able to build a permanent church. Her baptism record is displayed below. Although I cannot read it, I can see that Perryville is included in a few places in this document.
When Magdalena was just 2 years old, her mother died, so we do not see her in the first census including Magdalena in 1850. I have a suspicion that Magdalena may have had the middle name, Ellen, because on two different census records, we find her called by that name.
In 1856, when Magdalena was 13 years old, her father died, leaving her an orphan. She went to live with her older sister, Rosina, who had married Pancratz Muench for a while. However, when the 1860 census was taken, Magdalena is not found living with the Muench’s. I think I found her living in the household of Felix MIles in the Bois Brule Township.
Next, we will take a look at Magdalena’s future husband, Michael Ochs. Michael was born in Bavaria, Germany on May 31, 1835, the son of Conrad and Katherine (Kaiser) Ochs. When Michael was 4 years old, his family moved to America. His family is listed in a passenger list of an unknown ship that landed in Baltimore in 1839. Below the Conrad Ochs family, you will see another Michael Ochs and his family. I believe this is another family that settled in Perry County.
We see Michael Ochs in the 1850 census at the age of 15 living in the Brazeau Township. His father was a farmer.
In the 1860 census, we find the Ochs family living in the Cinque Hommes Township. Michael and a few of his brothers were working on their father’s farm.
Michael Ochs married Magdalena Meyer on February 15, 1861 at Peace Lutheran Church in Friedenberg. A civil record from Perry County for this wedding is shown below.
During the Civil War, Michael served in a Missouri regiment of the Union Army. I found two records of his military service.
Our German Family Tree only lists 3 children born to this couple, but other sources report 4. One child died in infancy. We find the Ochs family in the 1870 census. Michael was a farmer.
Next, we find the Ochs family in the 1880 census. This entry shows all 3 children.
By the time of the 1900 census, Michael and Magdalena were living in the Central Township of Perry County. Their son, Adolph, and his family were living in their household. Michael is still called a farmer.
The last census in which we find the Ochs couple was the one taken in 1910. This time, the Adolph Ochs family was listed separately.
Later in their lives, a couple of photos were taken of Michael and Magdalena. Perhaps one or both of these was taken on the occasion of their 50th anniversary which took place in 1911. Since the pair seems to be wearing the same outfits in both photos, I think they may have been taken on the same day. I need to give a shout-out to our friend, Clayton Erdmann, for providing these photos.
Magdalena Ochs died in 1914 at the age of 71. Her death certificate gives liver cancer as the cause of death.
An obituary for Magdalena gives us more insights into the life of Magdalena.
Mrs. Michael Ochs Called to Rest (text of obituary): It has pleased the Lord to call from this mortal life unto Himself Mrs. M. Ochs, (nee Magdalene Meyer). She died Monday morning July 6, 1914.
Mrs. Ochs was born June 16, 1843, on a farm near Perryville, and was the youngest child of Thomas and Margarete Meyer. In early childhood she lost both of her parents and thus became an orphan. John Muench and wife, Rosina, oldest sister of Mrs. Ochs provided her with a home and reared her.
In the year (Feb. 15) 1861, just before the war, she became the wife of one of the best known citizens of Perry County, Mr. Michael Ochs. The union was a happy one and was blessed with four children, three boys and one girl. One child died in its infancy. The children still living are: Judge Henry Ochs, Jr., Mrs. Emeline Knall, wife of Andrew Knoll, and Adolph Ochs, all living on their farms at Friedenberg.
Mrs. Ochs was not only known as saving and industrious, but also as a thoroughly Christian lady. Thus she helped to lay the foundation of a family not only known to be one of the most prominent in the county, but also to be the home of a Christian spirit. Mrs. Ochs, together with her aged husband, was always a prominent member of the Lutheran Church at Friedenberg. Three years ago she was permitted to celebrate with her husband, in the circle of her children and grandchildren, the golden wedding anniversary.
Mrs. Ochs always enjoyed good health until a few weeks ago, when she began to ail. Patiently she bore her last sickness, ready to die, only deploring that her beloved husband who had shared joy and sorrow with her for more than 53 years, would after her death miss her and her loving care. She leaves an aged husband, 3 children, 16 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren. Among the grandchildren are Mrs. Martin Mecker, Mrs. Albert Schamburg of Friedenberg, Mrs. Alvin Hoehn of near Longtown, and Mrs. Elmer Schaupert of Frohna. The funeral took place Tuesday afternoon in the presence of a very large concourse,at the Lutheran Cemetery of Friedenberg: Rev. J. W. Schoech officiating.
Michael Ochs died in 1916 at the age of 80. His death certificate is displayed here.
Michael and Magdalena Ochs are buried in the Peace Lutheran Cemetery in Friedenberg.
Another post was written a while back by Clayton Erdmann, about this couple’s rather well-known son, Henry Ochs. That post was titled, Junior, Judge, and Representative.