Today’s birthday boy is a Schmidt, but as far as I know, is in no way connected to my Schmidt clan. Heinrich Christian Schmidt was born on September 29, 1850, so today would be his 172nd birthday. Since I have already written a post about another Henry Schmidt, I will call today’s character Henry C. Schmidt to distinguish him from Henry G. Schmidt who wasn’t born until 1884. Henry C. was the first of 8 children born to David and Christina (Hecht) Schmidt and baptized at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna. We can take a look at his baptism record from that congregation’s books.
Henry is already found in the census taken during the year of his birth. The 1850 census lists Henry C. as being 1/12 years old (one month). He is called Christian in this entry. His father was a farmer.
Next, we find Henry C. in the 1860 census at the age of 9. Now there were 4 Schmidt children in this family.
Henry C. is found in one more census entry before he was married. His mother had died in 1863, so when the 1870 census was taken, David Schmidt was a widower. Henry C. was 19 years old and working on his father’s farm.
Now, we will take some time to look at the woman who would become Henry C.’s wife. Her name was Sophia Ross, who was born on November 24, 1853. Sophia was the daughter of Johann and Gertrude (Distle) Ross. Sophia was the first of 10 children born in this family according to our German Family Tree. All of them were baptized at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna except no baptism record is found in that congregation’s books for Sophia. The Ross family apparently became members of Concordia after she was born. Almost all of the census entries for Sophia say she was born in Ohio. The first census in which we find Sophia was the one taken in 1860. She was 6 years old, and her father was a farmer in the Brazeau Township.
Sophia was a teenager by the time of the 1870 census.
Henry C. Schmidt married Sophia Ross on November 4, 1873. The marriage almost certainly took place at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna, but it happened during the “Koestering Hole” when no marriage records are to be found in the books of Concordia, Frohna or Trinity, Altenburg. We can view a civil marriage record from Perry County that lists Rev. Koestering as the pastor.
The German Family Tree lists 8 children born to Henry C. and Sophia, and all of them were baptized at Concordia, Frohna. When the 1880 census was taken, there were 3 children in their household. Right below their entry, you will see the entry of Henry C.’s parents. They were likely working the same farm.
It would be 1900 before we can view another census entry. By that time, a few of their children had gotten married. Henry C. was a farmer all his life.
The 1910 census shows only 2 children left living with Henry C. and Sophia.
The 1915 plat maps show the Henry Schmidt farm located just north of Frohna on the road toward Brazeau.
The 1920 census shows Henry C. and Sophia living with their son, Gotthilf Schmidt, and his family.
In 1923, Henry C. and Sophia celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, and an article about that occasion appeared on the front page of the Perry County Republican. You may have to click on these thumbnails to enlarge them to read.
The last census in which we find Henry C. and Sophia was the one taken in 1930. This time, their son, Gotthilf, was called the head of the household. Henry C. and Sophia were in their 70’s.
Henry C. Schmidt died later in 1930 at the age of 79. We can view his death certificate below.
Sophia Schmidt died in 1931 at the age of 77. Her death certificate lists cancer of the face as a cause of death.
Henry C. and Sophia Schmidt are each buried in the Concordia Lutheran Cemetery in Frohna.
This Schmidt couple is responsible for 4 pages of descendants in our German Family Tree just for the ones that carried the Schmidt name to the next generation. There are many other pages in that document for the Schmidt daughters who got married and had children by other surnames. I’m sure there are plenty of folks that still live around here that would have this pair of Schmidt’s in their family tree.