Firstborn Grebing in Perry County

I will once again enter the Grebing family today to discuss the very first Grebing child to be born and baptized in Perry County, Missouri. After Hartmann Grebing married Justine Goethe on July 9, 1843, their first child, a boy named Johann Friedrich Grebing, was born on August 6, 1844. That would make today his 177th birthday. This child would go by the name of John on all of the census entries in which he is found. John was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. His baptism took place while that congregation was constructing their first permanent church, which was dedicated in the spring of 1845. His baptism record states that he was baptized in the house, not in the church. An image of his baptism record is displayed below.

John Grebing baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

The sponsors for John were an interesting group. One of them was Gottlieb Goethe, Justine’s father. Another one was Friedrich Weber, who had married Justine’s sister. The last one was Caroline Seibel, who was one of the fellow members of the New York Group with Hartmann Grebing. We could classify all three of these sponsors as original immigrants to Perry County.

John is found in his first census in 1850 at the age of 6. His father was a farmer.

1850 census – Brazeau Township, MO

When John was confirmed in 1858, that event took place at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna. In late 1857, the split that took place causing the formation of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Altenburg was happening. That must have caused the confirmands at Trinity to resume their instruction at Concordia, Frohna under Rev. Christoph Loeber. The Concordia records list several Trinity students that were there because of a vacancy at their church. There is even a student from Paitzdorf (Uniontown) where there was another transition from one pastor to the next taking place in 1858. I have to display this list in 2 images.

Concordia, Frohna 1858 confirmation class

John was a teenager when the 1860 census was taken. He was working on his father’s farm.

1860 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Prior to his marriage, John served as part of the Union Army during the Civil War. A record of his military service is shown below. His captain’s name is misspelled. It should say Captain Feig, another German Lutheran from East Perry County.

John Grebing – Civil War military record

John would get married in 1870, but not until after the census was taken for that year. He was 26 years old at the time.

1870 census – Brazeau Township, MO

John’s bride was going to be Anna Susanna Noennig, who was born on July 24 or 25, 1848. Her baptism record says she was born on July 25th; her gravestone says she was born on July 24th. She was the daughter of Gottfried and Johanna (Poppitz) Noennig. She was child #4 in that family. Anna was baptized on a Tuesday, so perhaps she, too, was baptized at her house. Her baptism record from the books of Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg is shown here.

Anna Noennig baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

Anna is found in the 1850 census and said to be 3 years old, although I think she was only 2. Her father was a farmer.

1850 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Next, we find Anna in the 1860 census at the age of 12.

1860 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Like John Grebing, Anna is found still living with her family in the year of her marriage. Here is the 1870 census entry for Anna.

1870 census – Brazeau Township, MO

John Grebing married Anna Noennig on October 27, 1870 at Trinity, Altenburg. If this marriage took place at the church, it would have been in the new church that had been dedicated almost exactly 3 years earlier on Reformation Day of 1867. Rev. J.F. Koestering performed that wedding, and he is known for the “Koestering Hole” in the Trinity records. So, we can only look at this couple’s civil marriage record from Perry County.

Grebing/Noennig marriage record – Perry County, MO

In 1872 and 1875, two children were born to this couple, one boy and one girl, Martin and Ida. We find the Grebing family in the 1876 Missouri state census. As it turns out, this is the only census record that shows the married couple of John and Anna.

1876 Missouri state census – Brazeau Township, MO

Later that year, John Grebing died on November 6, 1876 at the age of 32. There is a “Koestering Hole” in the death records of Trinity, Altenburg also. That “Hole” comes to an end in 1876, and John’s death record is the first one we can look at when it does. This death record mentions typhus as the cause of his death. Both of John’s parents outlived him.

John Grebing death record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

John Grebing is likely to be buried in the Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Altenburg, but no gravestone photo is found on Findagrave. I took a trip to the cemetery to look for that gravestone this morning, but I was unsuccessful. It is probably one of several in that area of the cemetery that are unreadable.

It turns out that Anna Grebing was a widow for a long time. She is found in 4 more census entries that I can show you. Here is the one taken in 1880. Her household is found right under that of her parents. Martin and Ida Grebing grew up without a father. The father figure in their lives was likely their Grandpa Noennig.

1880 census – Brazeau Township, MO

By the time of the 1900 census, Anna’s daughter, Ida, had gotten married to Martin Richter, and it is in Martin’s household that we find Anna in that and all other remaining census entries.

1900 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Anna is still living in Martin’s household when the 1910 census was taken, but this time that family was living in the Shawnee Township of Cape Girardeau County.

1910 census – Shawnee Township, MO

A later plat map produced in 1930 shows Martin’s farm being located about halfway between New Wells and Shawneetown, Missouri.

M. Richter land map – 1930

The last census in which we find Anna was the one taken in 1920.

1920 census – Shawnee Township, MO

Anna Grebing died in 1921 at the age of 72. Even her death certificate says that she was born on July 25th.

Anna Grebing death certificate

Anna Grebing is buried in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in New Wells. It is puzzling how her birthday was given as July 24th on her gravestone.

Anna Grebing gravestone – Immanuel, New Wells, MO

Not only did their daughter, Ida, marry a Richter. Her brother, Martin, married Martin Richter’s sister, Emma. Stories have been written on this blog about both of these children of John and Anna Grebing. You can find them by clicking on the links below.

Wittenberg Mail Carrier

The Other Richter/Grebing Couple


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