John Finds a Martha

Gotthilf Johannes Lorenz is the one who has a birthday today. Almost all of the documents for him call him John. He was born on July 27, 1873, the son of August and Justine (Franke) Lorenz. John’s parents are pictured below.

August and Justine Lorenz

John was the 9th of 11 children born into this Lorenz family. The first 2 children were baptized at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown, but the rest of them, including John, were baptized at Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar. Below is his baptism record.

John Lorenz baptism record – Salem, Farrar, MO

John is found in the 1880 census for the Salem Township at the age of 7.

1880 census – Salem Township, MO

I almost gave up looking for John in the 1900 census. That township’s census is the one that is so difficult to read, and Ancestry.com did not come close to transcribing his surname properly. I actually located him by finding some future neighbors of his from the 1910 census. I figured he may not have moved away from his neighbors. John was 26 years old according to this document.

1900 census – Salem Township, MO

Yesterday, I wrote about a pair made up of a Martin and a Martha. Today, it is John Lorenz who finds a bride by the name of Martha. Her name was Martha Gesche Mangels, who was born on December 21, 1881. Martha’s parents were Herman and Katherine (Katt) Mangels. Martha was the second child in her family. Her baptism record can be found in the books of Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar.

Martha Mangels baptism record – Salem, Farrar, MO

The only census in which we find Martha as a single woman was the one taken in 1900. This was another 1900 census entry that was difficult to find, but not because she was found in the Salem Township. She was living in the neighboring Union Township and living with a Knox household, working as a servant. Ancestry.com gives her age as 13, making her harder to find. The age on that form was actually 18.

1900 census – Union Township, MO

John Lorenz married Martha Mangels on April 30, 1903. This couple, as you might have expected, was married at Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar. We can take a look at the church record for that wedding.

Lorenz/Mangels marriage record – Salem, Farrar, MO

The German Family Tree lists 8 children born into this Lorenz family. All 8 of them lived to adulthood. The 1910 census for this Lorenz family shows them with 3 children. John’s father, August, was also living with them. John’s mother had died earlier during that year.

1910 census – Salem Township, MO

We can find the land that was farmed by John Lorenz in the 1915 plat maps for Perry County. His farm was very near the town of Farrar.

John Lorenz land map – 1915

In 1918, John had his World War I draft registration completed.

John Lorenz – WWI draft registration

Next, we find the Lorenz household in the 1920 census. Six children can be seen in this entry.

1920 census – Salem Township, MO

John was a farmer all his life. We next see this family in the census taken in 1930. The last 2 of their children had been born during the past decade.

1930 census – Salem Township, MO

Finally, we are able to see the Lorenz household in the 1940 census.

1940 census – Salem Township, MO

John Lorenz died in 1949 at the age of 76. We can take a look at his death certificate.

John Lorenz death certificate

Martha Lorenz would not die until 1964. Her death certificate states that she was 82 years old when she died.

Martha Lorenz death certificate

John and Martha Lorenz are each buried in the Salem Lutheran Cemetery in Farrar.

John and Martha Lorenz would be categorized as one of those couples in which both the bride and groom were born, baptized, confirmed, married, raised a family, and were buried while members of the same congregation. Those types of couples would be extremely rare these days.

The Lorenz surname is still fairly common in this area. That is partly due to the fact that there were two different early clans of Lorenz’s in and around Perry County. Today’s Lorenz family is part of the clan that I call the “Farrar Lorenz’s”. That clan became by far the largest one. I did not take the time to count how many previous blog posts have been written about people with the surname, Lorenz, but I know there have been a bunch.


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