The Hoehn/Hoffman Hook Up

Once again, I will begin with a special 125th birthday boy today. His name was Rudolph Albert Valentine Hoehn. Rudolph was the 3rd of 9 children born to Ferdinand and Emma (Fassold) Hoehn. It appears that all of the Hoehn children in this family were baptized at Peace Lutheran Church in Friedenberg. Rudolph appears in his first census in 1900. His family was living in the Central Township of Perry County where his father was a farmer. Rudolph was 2 years old at the time.

1900 census – Central Township, MO

Next, we find Rudolph in the 1910 census at the age of 12. I have to display this entry in two images. This family was still living in the Central Township.

1910 census – Central Township, MO

Rudolph Hoehn was confirmed at Peace, Friedenberg in 1911. We have a Hoehn family book in our research library that contains the photograph shown below. It looks to me like a typical confirmation photo.

Rudolph Hoehn

When the Perry County plat maps were produced in 1915, we find the Friedrich Ferdinand (F.F.) Hoehn farm located not far from Perryville. It would also have been located near the church in Friedenberg.

F.F. Hoehn land map – 1915

A story is told in the Hoehn family book about Rudolph’s work habits as a teenager.

In 1918, Rudolph had a World War I draft registration completed. A paragraph in the Hoehn family book says Rudolph was called into service, but he was rejected because of hearing issues.

Rudolph Hoehn – WWI draft registration

At the age of 22, Rudolph was still living with his parents. He was working on his father’s farm.

1920 census – Central Township, MO

Before the next census was taken, Rudolph got married. Let’s take a look at the woman who would become his wife. Her name was Bertha Albertine Hoffmann, who was born on February 11, 1908. Bertha was the daughter of Ludwig and Rosia (Schemel) Hoffmann. This Hoffmann family was not one of the Hoffmann’s that were members of local Lutheran churches. Based on the fact that her mother was later buried in a Catholic cemetery, I believe the Hoffmann’s were Catholics. I know that I cannot display her baptism record because we do not have the church records of any local Roman Catholic churches in our research library (at least not yet). I found a photo of Bertha’s father.

Ludwig Hoffmann

Bertha is found in the 1910 census at the age of 2. You can see that she was also part of a rather large family. This household was living in the Cinque Hommes Township of Perry County.

1910 census – Cinque Hommes Township, MO

The 1920 census is the last one that lists Bertha as a single person. She was 12 years old at the time.

1920 census – Cinque Hommes Township, MO

Now that you know the early history of both Rudolph and Bertha, allow me to show you a story that is contained in the Hoehn family book that describes how Rudolph may have met his future wife.

Rudolph Hoehn story

Finding evidence of the marriage of Rudolph Hoehn and Bertha Hoffmann proved to be a challenge. I found a short article in the Perry County Republican that mentioned how he and Bertha were getting a marriage license in St. Louis in May of 1928.

Hoehn/Hoffmann – PCR marriage article

Rudolph and Bertha were married on April 28, 1938. I have a sneaking suspicion that Rudolph and Bertha decided to get married in St. Louis because of the fact that Rudolph was Lutheran and Bertha was Catholic. The Hoehn family book has this photo of the Hoehn/Hoffmann wedding.

Rudolph and Bertha Hoehn wedding

Another story is told in the Hoehn book about what happened in St. Louis when these two were married.

The 1930 census shows Rudolph and Bertha living in the Salem Township. Their household included one child and one of Rudolph’s brothers. Rudolph was a farmer.

1930 census – Salem Township, MO

The 1940 census finds the Hoehn household living in the Bois Brule Township. This, time, we find 5 children in the household. Since none of these children have baptisms in our German Family Tree, I suspect that they were baptized in a Catholic church. The oldest child, Arlene, was confirmed at Trinity Lutheran Church in Point Rest, but that is the only record found in any local Lutheran church for the Hoehn children.

1940 census – Bois Brule Township, MO

In 1942, Rudolph had a World War II draft card completed. It gave Belgique as his address. That village is found in the Mississippi bottoms north of Menfro. Trinity, Point Rest is also located near that spot. Rudolph’s birthday on this form is incorrect.

Rudolph Hoehn – WWII draft card

A photograph was taken of the Ferdinand Hoehn family. If this photo was taken at the occasion of Ferdinand and Emma’s 50th wedding anniversary, then it was taken in 1942. The caption can direct you to which one is Rudolph.

Ferdinand Hoehn family

We find the Hoehn’s in one more census that we can view. In 1950, they were living in the Union Township where Rudolph was still a farmer.

1950 census – Union Township, MO

This photo of Rudolph and Bertha was taken at a later time in their lives.

Rudolph and Bertha Hoehn

Rudolph Hoehn died in 1986 at the age of 88; Bertha Hoehn died in 1997 at the age of 89. These two are buried together in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in Perryville.

Rudolph and Bertha Hoehn gravestone – Immanuel, Perryville, MO

I would categorize the story of Rudolph Hoehn as another one of those in which a man of humble beginnings displayed the typical work ethic of a German farmer in Perry County.

One thought on “The Hoehn/Hoffman Hook Up

  1. Yes, Bertha Albertine Hoffman was baptized 1 March 1908 at St. Maurus Catholic Church in Biehle, MO. Her baptism record (and others from that parish) can be viewed HERE with a free FamilySearch account. She and Rudolph Albert Valentine Hoehn were married 30 Apr 1928 by a Justice of the Peace in the city of St. Louis. That record is available HERE. Their son, Dr. Larry Hoehn, authored 𝔗𝔥𝔢 ℌ𝔬𝔢𝔥𝔫 𝔉𝔞𝔪𝔦𝔩𝔦𝔢𝔰 𝔣𝔯𝔬𝔪 ℜ𝔲𝔫𝔱𝔷𝔢𝔫𝔥𝔢𝔦𝔪 𝔱𝔬 𝔉𝔯𝔦𝔢𝔡𝔢𝔫𝔟𝔢𝔯𝔤, which I believe is the Hoehn Family book referenced in your post.


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