The Other Fred Arbeiter – Fred and Sophia

About a month ago, I wrote the post, The Arbeiters – Fred and Lena, which told of a Fred Arbeiter who was born in 1871. Today, you will read the story of a younger Fred Arbeiter, who would have called the other one his Uncle Fred. The younger one is today’s birthday boy.

Friedrich Wilhelm Arbeiter was born on September 15, 1889, the son of Henry and Caroline (Rowold) Arbeiter. Fred was child #5 out of 9, putting him right in the middle. Another previous post about Fred’s parents was written back in 2017 titled, Family Photos. Fred was baptized at Christ Lutheran Church in Jacob, Illiinois. His baptism record from that congregation’s books is pictured here.

Fred Arbeiter baptism record – Christ, Jacob, IL

When Fred was about 6 years old, his parents had a family photo taken in 1896. It includes 7 children. Fred is the boy standing to the right of his mother and in front of his oldest brother.

Henry Arbeiter family

Fred is found in the 1900 census at the age of 10.

1900 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

Henry and Caroline Arbeiter had another family photo taken in about 1903 that included all 9 of their children. Fred is standing in the back row, the second person from the right. This is a photo that has 5 of the daughters wearing somewhat matching dresses.

Henry Arbeiter family

I have another family photo to display, and I think this one was also taken before the 1910 census. Fred is standing in the back row, the second person from the left.

Henry Arbeiter family

Next, let’s look at the 1910 census including Fred, who was 20 years old at the time.

1910 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

In 1911, Fred’s brother, Ernst, got married, and Fred was part of the wedding party. In the photo below, Fred is standing in the middle of the back row. Fred turned into a rather big boy.

Ernst Arbeiter wedding

As I noted in the previous post about the older Fred Arbeiter, I figure it was today’s Fred Arbeiter who played baseball for the St. Louis Terriers in 1913, and was coached by Hall of Famer, Mordecai “Three Fingers” Brown. I think it was this Fred that was mentioned in this article published in the Perry County Republican in 1915.

Fred Arbeiter article – Perry County Republican 1915.

I will also display the stats for this Arbeiter while he was playing with the Terriers.

Arbeiter stats – St. Louis Terriers 1013

If this was indeed Fred Arbeiter from Jacob, Illinois, then it was also the same year in which Fred was married. Let’s take a look at his bride. Her name was Sophia Helen Elizabeth Schomber, the daughter of Jacob and Dora (Danklof) Schomber. She was born on August 25, 1895 in Mt. Olive, Illinois. Then we find some interesting movement in this Schomber family. In the 1900 census, we find them living in the Prairie Township of Fremont County in Iowa where her father was a farmer.

1900 census – Prairie Township, Fremont County, IA

Then, the next child in this family was born in 1903 back in Mt. Olive, Illinois. Then, in 1905, Sophia’s father died. In 1907, her mother married again. Her second husband was Sam S. Phillips. In 1910, we find Sophia and her family living in Murphysboro, Illinois. Sophia was 14 years old.

1910 census – Murphysboro, IL

I found an Illinois marriage record that says Fred Arbeiter married Sophia Schomber in 1913 in Jackson County, Illinois.

Arbeiter/Schomber Illinois marriage record

A later newspaper article detailing this couple’s 50th wedding anniversary says they were married on Christmas Day, December 25, 1913. According to our German Family Tree, this couple had 7 children, but another child not listed in GFT was born in 1941 making it 8 children.

Fred had his World War I draft registration completed in 1917.

Fred Arbeiter – WWI draft registration

The next census in which we find Fred was the one taken in 1920. There were 3 sons born by that time.

1920 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

We can take a look at the 1930 census next.

1930 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

In 1931, Fred’s parents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, and the photo below was taken. Fred and Sophia are the two standing in the back on the left.

The last census record we can view was taken in 1940.

1940 census – Fountain Bluff Township, IL

A World War II draft card was completed for Fred in 1942.

Fred Arbeiter – WWII draft card

In 1963, Fred and Sophia celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary and an article was published in the Murphysboro newspaper.

50th Wedding Anniversary article – 1963

Fred Arbeiter died in 1967 at the age of 77; Sophia Arbeiter died in 1981 at the age of 85. These two are buried together in the Christ Lutheran Cemetery in Jacob, Illinois.

Fred and Sophia Arbeiter gravestone – Christ, Jacob, IL

All the census records show Fred as being a farmer. Never a professional baseball pitcher. However, I do think that he tried his hand at that game in 1913. It just looks like he had trouble throwing strikes…like some St. Louis Cardinals’ pitchers nowadays.


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