Aug 22

Tombstone Tuesday–William George Bollenbacher

William George Bollenbacher, Kessler Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio (2017 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of William George Bollenbacher, located in row 4 of Kessler Cemetery [aka Liberty Cemetery], Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

William G.
Feb. 6, 1885
July 6, 1945

William George Bollenbacher was born 6 February 1885 in Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio, the son of Jacob and Magdalena “Lena” (Distler) Bollenbacher. He had a twin brother John David and both of their births are recorded in Mercer County. [1] This was the father Jacob Bollenbacher’s third marriage and son William had a number of half-siblings. In addition, William’s father Jacob served as a private in Company A of the 29th Regiment, OVI during the Civil War. [2]

In 1900 William Bollenbacher resided in Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio, with his parents and eight siblings. Their household in 1900: Jacob, 62; Magdalena, 43; Emma, 22; Elizabeth, 17; John D, 15; William G, 15; Daniel F, 12; Jacob D, 10; Molly, 8; Amelia, 5; and Hilda, 2. Jacob was born in Germany and immigrated in 1852. Magdalena was born in Ohio. Jacob and Magdalena had been married 38 years and she had given birth to eight children, all of whom were living. The father Jacob was a farmer. [3]

William George Bollenbacher married Mary Olga Huffman on 6 February 1907 in Adams County, Indiana. They were married on William’s birthday. Mary Olga Huffman was the daughter of George F. and Sarah Roseann (Dodge) Huffman, born in Adams County, Indiana, on 12 August 1889. According to their marriage license William was a farmer and Mary’s occupation was farmer’s daughter. It was the first marriage for both. [4] They were married by John Ault, JP. [5]

Two Bollenbacher brothers married Huffman sisters. William’s brother Jacob Dewald Bollenbacher married Mary Olga’s sister Maggie Iona Huffman.

William and Mary (Huffman) Bollenbacher resided in Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana, and in 1910 they had two children, Lulu I, 2; and Harold, 6 months. Lulu was reportedly born in Ohio, while Harold was born in Indiana. William farmed. [6] Their son Harold would eventually own and operate Bollenbacher’s Grocery in Chatt.

William Bollenbacher registered for the WWI draft in September 1918. His address was given as RR2 Geneva. He was 33 years old and was described as medium height and build with brown eyes and black hair. [7]

By 1920 William and Mary (Huffman) Bollenbacher had four children. Their family in 1920: William, 34; Mary O, 30; Lula I, 12; Harold A, 10; Gladys V, 6; and Alvin L, 3. William still farmed. [8]

William’s wife Mary Olga died on 16 November 1920. She was only 31 years of age [9] and left William to raise their four children who were under the age of 13 years.

In 1930 widower William lived with three of their four children in Jefferson Township. Their household in 1930: William, 45; Gladys I, 16; Alvin L, 12; and Mary Helen, 9. William farmed. [10] His son Harold Bollenbacher was already married, living with his own family in Jefferson Township, not all that far from some of my Brewster relatives. [11]

Widower William Bollenbacher resided in Jefferson Township the rest of his life. In 1940 he lived with his extended family. Living with him were daughters Mary and Gladys and Gladys’ family. Gladys was married to Robert Stuber and they had 3 children. In their household in 1940: William Bollenbacher, 50 (head); Mary Bollenbacher, 20 (daughter); Robert Stuber, 28 (son-in-law); Gladys Stuber, 27 (daughter); Richard Stuber, 4; Alice Stuber, 2; and Thomas Stuber, under a year; (grandchildren). William farmed and his son-in-law Robert drove a milk truck. [12]

At age 57 William registered for the WWII draft. He was 57 years old and resided at RR2, Geneva. He was 5’9”, weighed 145 pounds, had brown eyes, black hair, and a ruddy complexion. Mrs. Robert Stuber was the person named who would always know his address. [13]

William died on 6 July 1945 at RR 4 Berne, Adams County, Indiana. His death was caused by a brain tumor from an accidental head injury that he received some time before. He was 60 years and 5 months old. His daughter Lulu, Mrs. Gerald Farlow, was the informant for the information on his death certificate. He was buried on the 9th and Wells & Hardy, Geneva, were in charge of the arrangements. [14]

William and Mary Olga (Huffman) Bollenbacher had the following children:
Lulu I Bollenbacher (1907-2001), married Gerald Farlow
Harold (1909-1992), married Martha White
Gladys (1913-2004), married Robert Stuber
Alvin L (1916-1985), married Pauline Rupert
Mary Helen (1920-2006), married Charles Baker

William’s wife Mary Olga is buried in row 7 of Kessler Cemetery, just a few rows away from William.


[1] “Ohio, County Births, 1841-2003,” FamilySearch.org, Georg William Bollenbaugher, 6 Feb 1885; Liberty, Mercer Co, Births, FHL microfilm 2367095.

[2] U.S. Civil War Soldiers, 1861-1865, National Park Service, Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System; Ancestry.com.

[3] 1900 U.S. Census, Liberty, Mercer, Ohio, ED 85, p.6B, dwelling 111, family 116, Jacob Bollenbancher; Ancestry.com; FHL microfilm 1241304, NARA microfilm T623, roll 1304.

[4] “Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,” database with images, FamilySearch.org, William G Bollenbacher & Mary Olga Huffman; Adams County Marriage License Applications, Vol. 2, p.89; FHL microfilm 2321466.

[5] Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,” database with images, FamilyhSearch.org, William G Bollenbacher & Mary Olga Huffman, 6 Feb 1907; Adams County Marriages, Vol. 1, p.179; FHL microfilm 2321629.

[6] 1910 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.8B, dwelling & family 165, William G Bollenbacher; Ancestry.com; FHL microfilm 1374351, NARA microfilm T624, roll 338.

[7] U.S., WWI Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, Adams, Indiana, roll 1439777, William G. Bollenbacher; WWI Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, NARA, Washington D.C., M1509.

[8] 1920 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.6B, dwelling 125, visited 135, William G. Bollenbacher; Ancestry.com; NARA microfilm T625, roll 420.

[9] Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Death Certificates, 1920, roll 19; Mary Olga Bollenbacher, 16 Nov 1920; Ancestry.com; Indiana State Board of Health Death Certificates, 1900-2011, Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

[10] 1930 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.6B, dwelling 148, family 149, William Ballembocher; Ancestry.com; FHL microfilm 2340309, NARA microfilm T626, roll 574.

[11] 1930 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.4A, dwelling & family 80, Herold Bollenbacher; Ancestry.com; FHL microfilm 2340309, NARA microfilm T626, roll 574.

[12] 1940 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 1-4, p.5B, line 41, house visited 92, William Bollenbacher; Ancestry.com; NARA microfilm T627, roll 1024.

[13] U.S., WWII Draft Registration Cards, 1942, Records of the Selective Service System, 1926-1975, Record Group No. 147, William George Bollenbacher; NARA, Selective Service Registration Cards, WWII, Fourth Registration, Record Group No. 147.

[14] Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Death Certificates, 1945, roll 9; William Bollenbancher [as indexed], 6 Jul 1945; Ancestry.com; Indiana State Board of Health Death Certificates, 1900-2011, Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>