Great Grandpa Gottwerth’s Godson

I will tell a story today that gets into my Schmidt family. One of the main characters in this story is my great-granduncle. The term great-granduncle is defined as “your grandfather’s uncle”.

In order to tell this story, I will tell you how my family is tied into the New York Group. That was a group of German Lutherans who had come to America and lived in New York City for a while before deciding to join the Stephanites in Perry County, Missouri. The New York Group also arrived in this area in 1839, so we include them in the original immigration numbers. One member of the New York Group was Jacob Conrad Heinrich Seibel. Not long after arriving, Jacob married Christiana Rabold, and that couple began having children. One of those children was my great grandmother, Wilhelmina Seibel. That makes Jacob Seibel my great great grandfather. If you’d like to read a story focusing on the story of Jacob Seibel, a post was published on this blog titled, An Original Seibel – One of My GG Grandfathers.

After my great grandmother, Wilhelmina, was born, the next Seibel child, born February 4, 1849, was Johann Conrad Heinrich Seibel, Jr. This child went by the name, Heinrich (or Henry) during his lifetime. That qualifies Heinrich to be my great granduncle. I have also written a previous story that highlighted Henry’s second wife, Pauline Hopfer. That post was titled, Pauline and Her Henry’s. Therefore, some aspects of today’s story can be found in other articles on this blog, so I will attempt not to repeat too much from those posts. Heinrich Seibel was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg and must have been one of the last baptisms conducted by Rev. Gotthold Loeber because he died later that year. That baptism would have taken place in the 1845 church sanctuary which is now part of our museum.

Heinrich Seibel baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

I am going to skip ahead to discuss Heinrich’s first marriage. That means we have to take a look at the woman who would become his first wife. That also means that we have to enter the highly populated world of women named Anna Popp. Also, as it turns out, I discovered that I had made a mistake about an Anna Popp in a previous blog, but I won’t go there. I have previously displayed a collection of Anna Popp’s found on Lori Adams’s Ancestry family tree.

I know now that I have to be especially careful about looking for an Anna Popp who was born in the 1850’s. There are two Anna Katherine Popp’s in the above list, one who was born in 1852 and one who was born in 1853. One of those Anna Katherine’s, born in 1853, was the daughter of Johann Popp and Margaretha Ross and became the wife of Friedrich Moeckel. The other one, born in 1852, was the daughter of Andreas Popp and Catherine Eggers. She is the one who would marry Heinrich Seibel. Anna was born on August 21, 1852 and was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. Her baptism record is displayed below. She was baptized by Rev. Georg Schieferdecker.

Anna Katherine Popp baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

Anna is found in the 1860 census at the age of 8. Her father was a farmer in the Brazeau Township.

1860 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Anna’s father died in 1864, and then his mother married again. Her second husband was Heinrich Henn. When the 1870 census was taken, it looks like Anna’s name was Anna Henn, but that is incorrect. She was 18 years old at the time.

1870 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Heinrich Seibel married Anna Popp on April 24, 1873. That is the event that led me to tell this story today because that wedding took place on this day 150 years ago. This wedding would have taken place at Trinity, Altenburg, but that is one of the marriages that is part of the “Koestering Hole”. We can look at 2 different civil records for this marriage from Perry County.

Seibel/Popp marriage record – Perry County, MO

The second image is pictured here.

Seibel/Popp marriage record – Perry County, MO

Sadly, this marriage did not last long. However, during its short duration, a son was born on January 24, 1874. That child’s name was Jacob Gottwerth Seibel. Like his parents, Jacob’s baptism record is found in the books of Trinity Lutheran Church in Altenburg. In 1874, worship would have taken place in the new Trinity sanctuary dedicated in 1867, the building still used by that congregation now. However, January 24th was on a Saturday that year, and Jacob was baptized on the same day as he was born. This baptism likely occurred in the Seibel home. As you will soon discover, this may have been an emergency baptism. Below is the baptism record for Jacob. There is no “Koestering Hole” for baptisms.

Jacob G. Seibel baptism record – Trinity, Altenburg, MO

The German Family Tree translates the above record as follows.

A1.SEIBEL, “Jacob” Gottwerth (Born 24 Jan 1874, Died 11 May 1886) [AltenburgMO-Trinity]: Jacob Gottwerth Seibel, Father: Heinrich Seibel, Mother: Anna nee Popp, Born 24 Jan 1874, Baptized 24 Jan 1874, Sponsors: Ja. Seibel, G. Schmidt, Mrs Henn, Mrs Weber

Let me say a few things about Jacob’s sponsors. The first one, Ja. Seibel, is likely this boy’s grandfather. The second, G. Schmidt, is my great grandfather, Gottwerth Schmidt, and Jacob’s middle name is likely given him because he was given his sponsor’s name. To this young baby, my great grandfather would have been Uncle Gottwerth. The 3rd sponsor, Mrs. Henn, would have been the baby’s grandmother from the Popp side of the family. I am not sure exactly who the Mrs. Weber was. I did find that another Anna Popp had married a Weber, but discovered that the Popp/Weber marriage did not occur until after this baptism.

Now, we have to deal with the “Koestering Hole” once again. All of the evidence I could find points to the high likelihood that Anna Seibel died in 1874 as a result of complications with childbirth, but we have no death record to view. Just a matter of months later, with Jacob still an infant, Heinrich married again on April 11, 1874. His second wife was Pauline (Hopfer) Rabold. When the 1880 census was taken, we find the Seibel household in the entry shown below. Another son, Theodore, had been born to Heinrich and Pauline who was not even one year old in this entry. One of Pauline’s children from her first marriage, Emanuel Rabold, in also included in this household. There was a young man, William Herring, who was working on the Seibel farm. In the previous 1870 census, William had been living in the household of my great grandfather, Gottwerth Schmidt.

1880 census – Brazeau Township, MO

Jacob Gottwerth Seibel did not even live long enough to get confirmed. He may have started his confirmation training because he died in 1886 at the age of 12. His death record in the Trinity, Altenburg books says that Jacob died on encephalitis. I will add that this young boys grandfather, Jacob Seibel, Sr., died in January of 1886, not long before this Jacob Seibel died.

The rest of the story about Heinrich Seibel and his second wife is told in another article, so I will bring this post to an end.

Now, you have read a story written by Great Grandpa Gottwerth Schmidt’s great grandson about Great Grandpa Gottwerth’s Godson. I do have a few other questions. Jacob Conrad Heinrich Seibel, Jr. is my great granduncle, and Anna (Popp) Seibel was my great grandaunt. Would Jacob Conrad Heinrich’s second wife, Pauline, be called my great stepgrandaunt? Or great grandstepaunt? Or step great grandaunt? Or is there an official term for such a relationship? Also, Jacob Gottwerth Seibel was my grandfather, Emanuel Schmidt’s, cousin. Does this make me a first cousin twice-removed? I think so.

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