Jacob and the St. Louis Replica Cabin

Today is the 130th anniversary of the wedding of Jacob and Louisa Grebing. This couple spent almost their entire married lives in East Perry County, but late in their lives were in St. Louis at the time of their deaths. During those last years, Jacob was an instrumental character involved in the construction of a replica of Altenburg’s Log Cabin College on the campus of Concordia Seminary.

Hartmann Jacob Johann Grebing was born on March 16, 1861, the son of Hartmann and Justina (Goethe) Grebing. Jacob was the 8th of 9 children born to Hartmann and Justina. He was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. We can take a look at an image of his baptism record from that congregation’s books.

Jacob Grebing baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

Jacob can be found in the 1870 census at the age of 10, although he would have only been 9. His father was a farmer.

1870 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Next, we find Jacob in the 1880 census when he was 19. He was working on his father’s farm.

1880 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Now, we will take a look at the woman who would become Jacob’s bride. Her name was Louisa Johanna Charlotte Andermann, who was born on Ground Hog Day, February 2, 1870 in or near Red Bud, Illinois. She was the daughter of William and Charlotte (Loesche) Andermann. Louisa was born early enough to be found in the census during the year of her birth. The census makes it look like Louisa was the firstborn child in her family. Her father was a laborer in or around Red Bud.

1870 census – Randolph County, IL

I was unable to find Louisa’s family in the 1880 census. There must be a story explaining how Jacob Grebing from Altenburg got matched up with Louisa Andermann, but I do not know it. These two were married on April 28, 1892 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. The church record for that wedding is displayed here. There were 8 witnesses listed for this marriage, which was a rather large number for marriages back in those days. This record says that Louisa was from Altenburg, not Red Bud, and she is the only Andermann found in our German Family Tree.

Grebing/Andermann marriage record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

We can also view the marriage license for this couple.

Grebing/Andermann marriage license

Our German Family Tree lists 7 children born to Jacob and Louisa. I have already written several posts about some of those children. The 1900 census shows the first 3 of those children. Jacob was a farmer.

1900 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Next, we find the Grebing’s in the 1910 census. Five children were in their household. A set of twins was born in 1906, but they did not live long. Jacob’s mother, Justine, was also living in this household.

1910 census – Brazeau Township, MO

We find the Jacob Grebing farm in the 1915 plat books for Perry County. It was located between the towns of Altenburg and Frohna.

Jacob Grebing land map – 1915

The 1920 census for this family has to be displayed in two images. There were 3 children living with Jacob and Louisa.

1920 census – Brazeau Township, MO

I found this interesting article published in the Perry County Republican in 1922. It describes Jacob winning a rather prestigious award for his sausage-making talents. I know there are still Grebing’s living around here that are right proud of their sausage-making abilities.

Jacob Grebing – 1922 PCR article

Next, we find the Grebing’s in the 1930 census. Three children in their 20’s and 30’s were in their household. Many family histories on Ancestry.com do not include this census entry, probably because the transcription for the surname is given as Groling. I used the census indexes in our research library to assist me in finding it.

1930 census – Brazeau Township, MO

In the lead-up to the Centennial Celebration of the Stephanite immigration that was going to take place in 1939, there were plans to make a movie to mark that occasion. The movie-makers decided that they needed a log cabin for some of the scenes in that movie. In a previous blog post, The Replica, it pointed out that Edward Baese, Jacob Grebing’s son-in-law, was a gardener working at Concordia Seminary, where this replica of the Log Cabin College was to be built. Edward may have had an influence in getting Jacob involved in the building of that replica. Logs that came from the Jacob Grebing farm in Altenburg were hauled to St. Louis to be used in that building. Jacob went to St. Louis to help with that construction. The photo below shows Jacob working on that project.

The movie made for the Centennial Celebration was titled, “Call of the Cross”, and I believe I have seen a copy of that movie somewhere in our community.

The last census in which we find Jacob and Louisa was the one taken in 1940. They are still found living in Perry County, along with their son, Paul, and his family.

1940 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Jacob Grebing died in June of 1945 at the age of 84. His death certificate says he died from a fractured hip which was the result of a fall. He died in St. Louis.

Jacob Grebing death certificate

An obituary for Jacob was published in the Perry County Republican. His obituary mentions that he died of a stroke.

Louisa Grebing died later that same year. She died in November of 1945 at the age of 75. We can also take a look at her death certificate. It says she also died while in St. Louis.

Louisa Grebing death certificate

Jacob and Louisa Grebing were buried together in the Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Altenburg.

Jacob and Louisa Grebing gravestone – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

In closing, let me point out that it is the time when dogwoods are blooming around Altenburg. We have a few such trees outside our museum. I couldn’t resist taking a few photos of those blooming dogwoods this sunny morning with Trinity Lutheran Church, the location of the Grebing/Andermann wedding, in the background. Here is a small gallery of those photographs to brighten your day.


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