Dosey Bock

Today’s tale will be about a man who remained single all his life. If he was alive today, he would be celebrating his 133rd birthday. Theodosius Konrad Bock was born on July 18, 1889, the son of Benjamin and Sulamith (Hopfer) Bock. There were a dozen children born into this Bock family, and Theodosius was #9. If you are a regular reader of this blog, you will not be surprised that Theodosius, a product of a Bock/Hopfer marriage, was baptized at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown. An image of his baptism record from that congregation’s books is pictured here.

Theodosius Bock baptism record – Grace, Uniontown, MO

While working at the church picnic put on by my congregation, Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg, yesterday, I had the opportunity to chat with Bill Bock. He told me that Theodosius was called Dosey by his friends and family. I did not ask Bill how that nickname was spelled, so I don’t know if I got it right. For the most part, I will use that nickname for the rest of this post, partly because it will be easier for me to type.

Dosey is found in his first census in 1900 at the age of 10. The large Bock family spills over two census pages. Dosey’s father was a farmer. I know this census entry has shown up on this blog before because I have already written some stories about Dosey’s siblings.

1900 census – Union Township, MO

In 1903, Dosey was confirmed at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown. In this portion of his confirmation class, we see him listed with other common Uniontown names like Kassel, Franke, Brandes, and Hemmann. Also, one of Pastor Hueschen’s daughters was in his class.

Theodosius Bock confirmation record – Grace, Uniontown, MO

When the 1910 census was taken, Dosey was not living with his parents. Instead, he is called a hired man in the household of his older brother, Ernst, who had married Lina Hemmann. Ernst and Docey were both in the business of farming.

1910 census – Union Township, MO

The Perry County plat maps made in 1915 show several parcels of land owned by people named Bock. Gottfried and Benjamin Bock were brothers of Dosey. The parcel identified as E.H. Bock was the one belonging to Ernst. Dosey’s father was another Benjamin Bock. I may be wrong, but I think the larger Benjamin Bock property was the land on which Dosey was born and raised.

Bock parcels of land – 1915

In 1917, Dosey had a World War I draft registration completed. This document says Dosey was working on his father’s farm. Dosey also indicated that he should receive an exemption from military service because his parents depended on him.

Theodosius Bock – WWI draft registration

An article appeared in the Perry County Republican in 1918 that includes a listing of men who had been considered for exemptions by the local draft board. Dosey’s name is on the list.

Theodosius Bock – PCR article 1918

I am guessing that this photograph of Dosey was taken at about this time of his life. It is a cropped photo of him when he was part of a larger photo of his Bock family, but I don’t have the full picture. I wish I did.

Dosey Bock

Since I first published this story, Eike Bock, from Germany sent me a better image Docey. It is added below. It has even been colorized.

Dosey’s father died in 1919, so when the 1920 census was taken, we find Dosey living in the household of his younger brother, Benjamin, who had married Alma Brandes. Dosey’s mother and another single sister, Amelia, were included in this household.

1920 census – Union Township, MO

In the 1930 census, Docey is found living in the same household as he was found in 1920. He and Benjamin were doing farm work.

1930 census – Union Township, MO

Dosey was still alive and almost certainly living in Perry County when the 1940 and 1950 censuses were taken, but I was unsuccessful at finding him in either of those enumerations. In 1942, Dosey was required to complete a World War II draft card. This form says he was farming for himself, but I suspect he was farming with one of his brothers.

Theodosius Bock – WWII draft card

Bill Bock also shared with me that Dosey spent his life living with other members of his family. Dosey died in 1969 at the age of 79, about a month shy of his 80th birthday.

Theodosius Bock death certificate

Dosey was buried in the Grace Lutheran Cemetery in Uniontown.

Theodosius Bock gravestone – Grace, Uniontown, MO

From birth to death, all of the church records for Docey can be found in the same set of books from Grace, Uniontown. He may not have had a family of his own, but it looks like he spent all his life in service to the family into which he was born.

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