There were two of the original immigrants to settle in Perry County in 1839 by the name of Gottfried Lorenz. One was a shoemaker who came aboard the ship, Copernicus, and a tailor who was part of the Gruber Group and came aboard the ship, Johann Georg. To make things more confusing, the shoemaker had a son named Traugott who named one of his sons, Gottfried. I told his story in the post, Gottfried’s Popcorn Stand. You will not be told the story of any of those Gottfried’s today. You will read the tale of the shoemaker’s son, Gottfried Lorenz. Yes, that would make the popcorn stand’s Gottfried the nephew of today’s Gottfried. And if that is not enough, the shoemaker’s father was apparently also a Gottfried.
Yesterday, you read the story of August Brandes who was born on October 12, 1853. One day after August was born in Uniontown, another baby boy was born about 10 miles east of there in Altenburg. His name was Johann Gottfried Lorenz, who was born on October 13, 1853. As mentioned, his father was another Johann Gottfried Lorenz, and that shoemaker had married Johanna Mueller in 1841. I will at this point mention that Johanna Mueller was the sister of Rev. J.A.F.W. “Alphabet” Mueller, the first graduate of Concordia Seminary in Altenburg. I guess nowadays you could say that young Gottfried could call him his Uncle Alphabet. Gottfried Lorenz was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. His baptism record is shown below. I think it is notable that one of his sponsors was Teacher Winter, the first teacher at Trinity, Altenburg.
Gottfried can be found in his first census in 1860 at the age of 7.
Next, we find Gottfried in the 1870 census as a teenager.
I was not able to find Gottfried in the 1880 census, which was also the year he got married. Let’s take a look at his wife. Her name was Julia Elizabeth Mueller. Yes, that means Gottfried’s mother was a Mueller, and his wife was a Mueller. However, they were from different Mueller clans. Julia was born on February 22, 1861, the daughter of George and Magdalena (Seibel) Mueller. Julia’s father had been part of the Gruber Group, and Magdelana’s parents had been part of the New York Group. Julia was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. One of her sponsors was Zacharias Mueller, who was her uncle. Here is an image of her baptism record.
Julia is found in her first census in 1870. Her family was living in Altenburg, and her father was a retail dry goods merchant. I suspect that he was in business with his brother, Zacharias, who was listed with the same occupation in that census. Julia was 9 years old.
Next, we find Julia in the 1880 census. This time, her family was living in the Union Township of Perry County. Julia was 19 years old, and, as said before, this was to be the year that she would get married.
On September 2, 1880, Gottfried Lorenz married Julia Mueller at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. The church record for this wedding says Gottfried was from Wittenberg and Julia was from Altenburg. That church record is pictured here.
We can also take a look at a civil marriage record from Perry County.
I will insert here that Gottfried’s older brother, Johann, also married a Mueller prior to the above marriage. That Mueller was from yet another Mueller clan, the one from which my grandmother, Bertha Mueller, came.
The German Family Tree says this couple had 9 children, all of which were baptized at Trinity, Altenburg. Some of them, including the first three, died at an early age. We find this household when the 1900 census was taken. The family was living in Wittenberg where Gottfried was a wagon maker, and it included 4 children.
Julia Lorenz died in 1902 at just 41 years of age. leaving Gottfried as a widower. It may have been that death that precipitated his move to St. Louis, where we find him living in the 1910 census. Believe it or not, he was living in a Mueller household. That Mueller was not related to any of the Perry County Mueller’s. After all, this census says this Adam Mueller was born in Illinois. However, his wife was Hedwig, who was one of Gottfried and Julia’s daughters. That means Hedwig was the third consecutive generation of Lorenz’s to marry a Mueller. Gottfried is not given an occupation in this entry.
Gottfried Lorenz died in 1913 at the age of 59. His death certificate describes him as a wagon maker. It also says he was going to be buried in Altenburg even though he died in St. Louis.
Gottfried and Julia Lorenz are each buried in the Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Altenburg.
Neither Julia nor Gottfried lived very long, but that did not keep them from having plenty of children. I do know this. When I enter the world of Lorenz or Mueller surnames, it always presents a challenge to keep everything straight. I also know that if I would have attempted to research this tale 10 years ago, it would have been much more difficult. I think I have made some progress in becoming more familiar with these surnames and the potential difficulties they present.