Mary and Her Swiss Jakob

Mary Bock is today’s birthday girl. She happens to be another one of those Perry County characters who has a baptism and confirmation record in a local church’s books, as well as showing up in a Perry County census at an early age, but then disappears from this area. Like so many others who began their lives in East Perry County, Marie ended up in St. Louis.

Marie Pauline Bock was born on April 11, 1882, so today would be her 141st birthday. She was the daughter of Benjamin and Sulamith (Hopfer) Bock. I have written several previous stories on this blog about children of this Bock/Hopfer couple. After all, there were a dozen children born to them according to our German Family Tree. All of those Bock babies were baptized at Grace Lutheran Church in Uniontown. Marie’s baptism record from that congregation’s books is pictured below.

Marie Bock baptism record – Grace, Uniontown, MO

Like so many others who were born in the early 1880’s, we don’t find them in a U.S. census until they were teenagers. That is because we cannot view the 1890 census. Marie is found in the 1900 census at the age of 18. The Bock family spills over two census pages. Marie’s father was a farmer in the Union Township.

1900 census – Union Township, MO

As it turns out, that census entry would be the only one in which Marie, often called Mary, would be found living in Perry County. When the 1910 census was taken, we discover that Mary took the career path of finding work as a servant for a family in St. Louis. She was living with Herman Hichmann and his wife and working as a servant. Herman was a physician.

1910 census – St. Louis, MO

When Mary was a fairly young woman, her Bock family had a photograph taken. I do not have access to the photo of the entire family, but someone on has cropped out each person in the photograph and put them on that website. Here is the photo of Mary.

Marie Bock

Mary was still single in 1920 in her late 30’s when the census was taken for that year. She was living in the household of the William Norkert family in St. Louis. She and 2 other girls living in this household were called maids. One of the other maids, Emma Seibel, was another Perry County native.

1920 census – St. Louis, MO

Now, we need to take a look at the man who would become Mary’s husband. His name was Jakob Richard, who was born on January 4, 1882. I was unable to find out the names of Jakob’s parents. According to Jakob’s naturalization record below, he arrived in this country in 1909. This document also states that Jakob was from Switzerland.

Jakob Richard naturalization record – 1917

Jakob filled out his naturalization papers in 1917, and a year later, he was filling out his World War I draft registration form. This document says he was a riveter for the Simmons Hardware Company.

Jakob Richard – WWI draft registration

I found this advertisement for the Simmons Hardware Company.

Simmons Hardware Company advertisement

I did not locate Jakob in the 1910 census, but we do find him living in St. Louis when the 1920 census was taken. He was living in the William Otto household and working at a shoe factory at the age of 37.

1920 census – St. Louis, MO

Jakob Richard married Marie Bock on May 12, 1921, but I only know that based on a family tree on Ancestry. I have no documentation for it. Based on subsequent census entries, Jakob and Marie had just one child, a girl named Elizabeth. The 1930 census shows this small family. Jakob was still working at a shoe factory.

1930 census – St. Louis, MO

The 1940 census shows the same family members, but this time, Richard has a different occupation and the family was living in a different location. The Richard’s were living in the Rock Township of Jefferson County, just south of St. Louis. Richard was a landscape artist for an electric company.

1940 census – Rock Township, MO

Jakob had a World War II draft card completed in 1942. He is given a Kimmswick address and was working for the Shanderson Electrical Company.

Jakob Richard – WWII draft card

The last census we can view is the one taken in 1950. They were living in the same location, and Jakob had the same job.

1950 census – Rock Township, MO

Jakob Richard died in 1972 at the age of 90. His death certificate says that his usual occupation was a landscape gardener. This form gives us no help in identifying Jakob’s parents.

Jakob Richard death certificate

Mary Bock died in 1975 at the age of 93. In a few years, we may be able to view her death certificate. Jakob and Mary are buried together in the St. Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in St. Louis.

Jakob and Marie Richard gravestone – St. Trinity, St. Louis, MO

St. Trinity Lutheran Cemetery is one of several cemeteries in the St. Louis area that contains the remains of quite a few people who began their lives in Perry County. The Emma Seibel mentioned in this story never married and is buried in Concordia Lutheran Cemetery in St. Louis. That cemetery is another one that contains quite a few Perry County natives. As for me, I am likely to do just the opposite. I was born and baptized in St. Louis, and I plan to be buried in a Perry County Lutheran cemetery.

One thought on “Mary and Her Swiss Jakob

  1. How do we find out how Boyd Kasten St. Louis Father Theophil Kasten Union town Mo died 1995. I am related to a Dee Bultmann Haupt I went to Lutheran Central high School we both graduated in 1964 And her Grand Parents lived in the farm in Union Town next door to the Arthur Kasten farm and one of her family members married a Kasten from Union Town Mo.

    We were trying to research how we are related.

    Boyd Kasten 510 Huntercreek Rdg. Ct. Des Peres, Mo. 63131


    Thank You

    Boyd Kasten



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s