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Nov 22

Tombstone Tuesday–Fred W. & Maria W. (Springer) Becher

Fred W. & Maria W. Becher, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

Fred W. & Maria W. Becher, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Fred W. and Maria W. (Springer) Becher, located in row 9 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

BECHER
Maria W. 1888-1958
Fred W. 1887-1960

Friedrich Wilhelm “Fred” Becher was born in Mercer County, Ohio, on 2 September 1887 to Johann and Louise Friederike (Mamber) Becher. His father was born in Liberty Township and his mother was born in Württemberg. Fred was baptized at Zion Chatt on 25 September 1887 with George Becher and Emilie Rieger as sponsors. He was confirmed at Zion Chatt by Rev. R.V. Schmitt on 31 March 1901.

Fred Becher married Nora Arminte Fennig on 7 September 1909. They were married by Rev. J.L. Marvin of New Corydon, Indiana, although their marriage license and return was recorded in Mercer County. Nora was the daughter of H.J. and Anna (Locker) Fennig of Washington Township, Mercer County, Ohio. [1]

After their marriage Fred and Nora lived along Brandt Pike in Blackcreek Township, Mercer County, where Fred farmed. [2]

Fred and Nora had two children, Clifford Cornelius (1911-1992) and Werner LeRoy (1915-1979). Nora Becher died on 2 September 1915 from septicemia poison following the birth of their second child Werner LeRoy. She was 33 years, 1 month, and 26 days old.

With two very young children to raise, widower Fred Becher married Maria W.L. (Springer) Itskin on 14 October 1916 in Allen County, Indiana. Maria lived in Sheldon, Indiana, at the time of their marriage and was 28 years old. Fred Becher’s residence was Willshire, Ohio, and he was a 29 year-old farmer. [3]

Maria Wilhelmina Louise Springer was born 29 June 1888 in Sheldon, Pleasant Township, Allen County, Indiana, the daughter of Frederick and Wilhelmina (Leininger) Springer, according to Zion Chatt’s records. One Ancestry.com account indicates her father’s name was Frederick August and her mother’s name was Philippina Catherine Leininger. According to Zion Chatt’s records Maria was baptized and confirmed at St. Marks in Yoder, Indiana.

Their marriage record indicates that this was her third marriage and that she was twice divorced between the years 1913 and 1915. Maria married Oliver W. Itskin on 26 May 1910 in Allen County, Indiana. [4] Maria and Oliver Itskin had a son, Lorraine Itskin, born in 1914. They divorced in August 1913 and Maria married Joseph A. Current on 25 August 1914 in Allen County, Indiana. [5] 

In 1920 Fred and Maria Becher lived in Black Creek Township, Mercer County. In the household: F.W. Becher, 32; Maria, 31; Clifford, 8; Lorraine, 5; Verner, 4; Luis, 2. Note that her son Lorraine Itskin was listed as a Becher and was born in Indiana. Fred was a farmer. [6]

The Fred W. Becker household in 1930: Fred W, 43; Mary W, 42; Werner L, 14; Louis A, 12; J Lorraine A Itskin, 16. They lived on State Route 51, wherever that was. [7] Could they have meant State Route 49?

In 1940 Fred and Maria were the only two people in their household. Fred was 52 and Maria was 51 and they had lived in this same house in 1935. [8]

Maria (Springer) Becher died from cardiac and kidney failure at 10:00 p.m. on 29 March 1958 at the Berne Nursing Home. She was 69 years and 9 months old and was buried on 1 April. Her address was Route 1, Willshire, but she had resided at the nursing home four weeks. Her physician was Dr. N.E. Beaver, who was also our family physician back then. Yager Funeral Home, Berne, was in charge of arrangements. [9] Maria was survived by her husband, sons Lorraine Itskin and Louis Becher; 2 stepsons, Clifford and Werner Becher, 6 grandchildren, 2 great-grandchildren, 5 brothers: Louis, William, George, Ed, and Harold; 5 sisters: Mrs. Martha Doermann, Amelia Zellinger, Esther Hartman, Ada Buttearl, and Loretta Grover, according to Zion Chatt’s records.

Fred W. Becher died of a stroke on 10 December 1960 at the Adams County Memorial Hospital in Decatur, Indiana. He was 73 years, 3 months, and 8 days old and was buried on 12 December. Fred was a retired farmer whose address was Route 1, Willshire. His son Louis Becher was the informant for the information on his death certificate. Dr. Norman Beaver was his physician and Yager Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements. Fred was survived by brothers, 3 sons: Werner, Clifford, and Louis and his step-son Lorraine Itskin. [10]

Fred and Maria (Springer) Becher had one son:
Louis (1917-1994), married Maryan Ferry; married Eileen Prior

 

[1] “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 15 Aug 2015), Fred W. Becher and Nora A. Fennig, 7 Sep 1909; citing Mercer County, Ohio Marriages, Vol. 9, p.539, from FHL microfilm 914958.

[2] 1910 U.S. Census, Blackcreek, Mercer, Ohio, ED 107, p. 3A, dwelling & family 48, Fred W. Becher; FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 15 Aug 2015); from FHL microfilm 1375227, from NARA microfilm T624, roll 1214.

[3] “Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 20 Nov 2016), Fred W. Becher and Maria W.L. Itskin, 14 Oct 1916; Allen County Marriages, Vol. 44, p.311; FHL microfilm 2130027.

[4] Marriage Index, 1800-1941,Oliver W Itskin to Minnie Springer, 26 May 1910; Index to Marriage Record 1824-1920, WPA, 1938-1940, from County Clerk’s O, Book 34, p.262.

[5] “Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 20 Nov 2016), Joseph A Current and Minnie W. Itskin, 25 Aug 1914; Allen County Marriages, Vol. 41, p.165; FHL microfilm 2111593.

[6] 1920 U.S. Census, Black Creek, Mercer, Ohio, ED 124, p.11A, dwelling & family 117, FW Becher; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Nov 2016); FHL microfilm 2341584, NARA microfilm T625, roll 1418.

[7]1930 U.S. Census, Black Creek, Mercer, Ohio, ED 0001, p.5B, dwelling & family 215, Fredric W Becher; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Nov 2016); NARA microfilm T626, roll 1850.

[8] 1940 U.S. Census, Black Creek, Mercer, Ohio, ED 54-1, p.9B, line 69, Fred W Becher; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Nov 2016); NARA microfilm T627, roll 3114.

[9] Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-2011, database on-line, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Nov 2016), Mrs. Fred W. Becher, 29 Mar 1958, no. 7395; Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

[10] Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-2011, database on-line, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Nov 2016), Fred W. Becher, 10 Dec 1960, no. 40779; Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

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