After writing a post about a Koenig family that lived in the Farrar area yesterday, I found another Koenig story for today. This tale will focus on a Koenig family that lived in the New Wells vicinity. This is also another one in which there is some debate about a date of birth. Our German Family Tree gives a June 21st birthday for today’s main character, but his gravestone gives his birthday as June 20th. I’ll let you decide which one is more likely the correct one.
We begin this story by looking at Martin Rudolph Koenig. His baptism record from the books of Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells says he was born on June 21, 1894. If that is the case, today would be his 128th birthday. Martin was the son of Julius and Elizabeth (Loos) Koenig. His baptism record is displayed below. Martin had a “baptism twin”, Julius Gottfried Koch, who was baptized on the same day as he was.
Martin is found in his first census in 1900 when he was 6 years old. He was child # 6 of 8 children in this Koenig family. His father was a farmer in the Shawnee Township of Cape Girardeau County. All of Martin’s older siblings in this entry were girls, and the two sons were too young to be helpful on the farm. Two farm laborers were included in their household to help with Julius’s farm. I will point out that one of them was Louis Scholl, who was related to the woman Martin would later marry.
Next, we find Martin in the 1910 census at the age of 15. Even though this entry gives no indication of an occupation, he and his younger brother, Arnold, were old enough to be helpful to their father on his farm.
In 1918, Martin had his World War I draft registration completed.
Martin did serve his country during that war. We can take a look at a record of his military service.
Martin is still found as a single man when the 1920 census was taken even though later that same year, he would get married. This time, Martin was called a farm laborer.
Now, we will take a look at the woman who would become Martin’s wife. Her name was Ella Elizabeth Scholl, who was born on March 3, 1899. Ella was the daughter of Theodore Martin “Jim” and Ottilia “Tillie” (Petzoldt) Scholl. We have a Scholl family binder in our research library, and that resource has this wedding photo of Ella’s parents. Tillie was wearing one of those “black and white” wedding gowns.
Ella was the oldest of 3 children born to this Scholl couple. She was also baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells. We can take a look at her baptism record.
Ella was a only one year old when the 1900 census was taken. Her father was a farmer in the Shawnee Township.
Next, we find Ella in the 1910 census. By then, Ella had two younger siblings.
Like it was for Martin, Ella is found as still being single in the year that she was married, 1920. She was living with her parents at the age of 20.
On April 11, 1920, Martin Koenig married Ella Scholl at Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells. The church record for that occasion is shown here.
We can also view the marriage license for this couple.
The Scholl family binder also includes a wedding photo of Martin and Ella. It gives a wedding date of April 3rd, which does not correspond with the above documents.
Three children were born to Martin and Ella during the 1920’s, so when the 1930 census was taken, we find this Koenig household. Martin was a farmer.
Because I was unable to find the Koenig’s in the 1950 census, the last one I can display for them is the one taken in 1940. Martin was still a farmer in the Shawnee Township.
Martin had a World War II draft card completed in 1942. This is another one of those documents that demonstrates that New Wells, despite being in Cape Girardeau County, had its mail delivered out of the post office in Altenburg. This still occurs today.
When Martin retired from farming, he and Ella moved to Jackson. Martin Koenig died in 1986; Ella died in 1991. Both of them died at the age of 92. These two are buried together in the Russell Heights Cemetery in Jackson. There is also a plaque on that gravestone in memory of Martin’s military service during World War I. Also buried with them is their daughter, Irene, who never married. Martin’s birthday is given as June 20th on this grave marker.
The Koenig surname is another one of those that take up a lot of pages in our German Family Tree. It is also one of those surnames that is hard to keep straight. Because it is such a large portion of our GFT, that also means some names get repeated often. Yesterday, there was an Ella Koenig whose maiden name was Koenig. Today we have another Ella Koenig, but she got that name by marrying a Koenig. I know there is another Ella Koenig that lives around here now, and I believe she is named after an Ella who is part of that Koenig branch.