Today’s tale begins with the birth of Ida Amalie Kuntze on June 2, 1893. You will discover that this Kuntze girl gets her surname caught up in a web of Meyer’s and Miesner’s. Ida was the daughter of Wilhelm and Susanna (Grosse) Kuntze. She was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. We can take a look at her baptism record from that congregation’s books.
Ida shows up in her first census in 1900 when she was 6 years old. Her father and an older brother were shoemakers.
Next, we find Ida in the 1910 census. Her father died in 1907, so he is not included in this Kuntze household.
Also in 1910, Ida was an attendant at the wedding of Wilma and Emma (Weber) Hutteger, and there was a picture taken of the entire wedding party. It is the only photo I have of the major characters in today’s story. Ida is the second person from the right.
Now, we will turn our attention to the man who would become Ida’s husband. His name was Otto Johann Meyer, who was born on April 18, 1893, less than 2 months before Ida was born. Here is where we get into a connection between the Meyer and Miesner names. Otto was the son of Johann and Anna (Miesner) Meyer. Otto’s baptism record is found in the books of Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar.
Otto is also found in his first census entry in 1900. It is not an easy image to read, but it says Otto was 7 years old at the time, and his father was a farmer.
In 1910, Otto, at the age of 16, was listed as having no occupation. I have a suspicion that Otto may have been attending school instead of working on his father’s farm.
Otto Meyer married Ida Kuntze on June 28, 1914. I am somewhat surprised that this wedding took place at Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar, Otto’s home church. Most weddings take place at the bride’s church. The church marriage record says that Otto was an arbeiter (worker) in Wittenberg, and that Ida was from Altenburg. I will point out that the attendants for this wedding include all three names from today’s “web”…Meyer, Miesner, and Kuntze.
We are also able to view this couple’s marriage license.
Otto Meyer had to complete a World War I draft registration in 1917. I am surprised that, at the age of 24, Otto is already called the superintendent of the Miesner Lumber & Manufacturing Company (a.k.a. the swing factory) in Wittenberg. We also see another reference to this story’s connection to the Miesner surname.
Otto and Ida had two sons that were baptized at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Wittenberg. Walter Meyer was born in 1915.
Wilbert Meyer was born in 1919. If you look at the sponsors in these two baptism records, you once again see Meyer, Miesner, and Kuntze names.
The Meyer’s were still living in Wittenberg when the 1920 census was taken. Otto was called a machine foreman at the swing factory.
The swing factory would close, and sometime before the 1930 census was taken, Otto and his family moved to St. Louis. This time, we find Otto called a millwright for a lumber mill.
We will now see evidence of this Meyer family moving from place to place. In a 1932 city directory for Columbus, Ohio, we find Otto working as a manager of Excelsior Manufacturing Company.
Then, in 1940, this census entry shows the Meyer’s living in Springfield, Ohio where Otto is called a production manager for a wholesale furniture company. In this entry, we also see a foster daughter named Marilyn who was 6 years old.
When Otto had his World War II draft card completed in 1942, he was back in St. Louis, and America had just gotten involved in another war. Otto was working at Emerson Electric in what was called the turret division.
Below is a definition of the word, turret. I am guessing that definition #2 is the one that applies here. Emerson Electric was likely already involved in the war effort.
On a side note, my father went off to fight in World War II, and when it was over, he went to work for Emerson Electric. I know that during the Viet Nam War, my dad was doing sheet metal work for military helicopters, so this company has been involved in doing government work for the military.
The last census in which we can find the Meyer’s is the one taken in 1950. At the age of 56, Otto was a wood worker at a furniture factory.
Ida Meyer died in 1961 at the age of 68; Otto Meyer died in 1976 at the age of 83. There is evidence that each of them died in Logan, Ohio. However, these two are buried together in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Kirkwood, Missouri, a municipality that is part of the St. Louis metropolitan area.
Their gravestone also says there was a daughter, Evelyn Ida, who was born in 1933 and died in 1937 that was buried there. That child never appeared in a census entry. However, this does make me wonder if the Meyer’s made another move back to St. Louis between their time in Columbus, Ohio in 1932, and when they lived in Springfield, Ohio in 1940. I looked for a Missouri death certificate for Evelyn, but was unsuccessful.
The Miesner-Kuntze connection continues. An Altenburg resident, Russ Miesner, married a Kuntze. I guess I should ask him someday if he has any Meyer’s in his family tree.