May 05

Charles Phillip White (1924-2017)

Zion Chatt lost another longtime member last week and he was laid to rest in Zion’s cemetery this past Monday.

Charles “Phillip” White was a dear and longtime friend. I knew Phillip and his late wife Helen Jean (Hileman) as long as I can remember.

Phillip White, December 2015.

I spent a lot of time on my Miller grandparents’ farm when I was little and Phillip and Helen Jean lived on the next road to the north, just across the field. They owned and operated White’s Engine Service, which was the place my dad and grandfather went when they needed engine and lawnmower repairs, advice, or just to talk. In addition, Helen Jean used to stop by the farm and take me to Bible School in the summer.

After Joe and I married we purchased lawn equipment and chain saws from the Whites and they continued to do repairs for us, too. They maintained our mowers and sharpened Joe’s mower and chain saw blades.

Phillip loved to talk about and show off his Bantam cars. He had several, some in various stages of rebuilding. On a visit years ago Phillip took me for a ride in one of those cute little cars, a 1936 Austin Roadster convertible. The car was adorable but when I asked him about it last year he said he had sold it. It was during that same visit years ago that Phillip gave us a little replica of a Bantam. It was probably from one of the many Austin Bantam Society meetings they attended over the years in several different states. This replica is inscribed Texas 92 and I placed it on the organ when I played at Phillip’s funeral on Monday.

He and Helen Jean loved cars and they often attended the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Festival. Phillip wowed the people there when he churned home-made ice cream by using the rear axle of his car.

Phillip had a very good memory and was a great story-teller. He told me all sorts of interesting things about Chatt and the surrounding area—the way things were in the old days. He remembered the people and businesses that were once in Chatt and where the people lived and where the businesses were located.

I loved go over and visit and pick his brain. Phillip told me about the old building now in the woods that once was Chatt’s barber shop. About the garage that was once a Chatt school building. He showed me an old envelope postmarked Chattanooga, Ohio, 1897. He knew and remembered so much.

On a visit with Phillip last May he told us about the time he was shot. Accidentally, of course. It seems he and another man were out shooting rats in a corn crib and a skunk also happened to be hiding below. Phillip was looking under the corn crib when the other man shot at a rat. The bird shot ricocheted and hit Phillip in the left arm. He said the bird shot was still in his arm.

Phillip is also told me that Zion Chatt’s organ came from a theatre in St. Marys. He should know.

He was proud to talk about his family genealogy and he showed me a picture of his ancestors’ house that still stands just across the state line in Indiana. He shared some other old photos that were special to him—some old family photos as well as photos of deer and other animals. He knew stories about my family, too, about my dad and about bellings.

White’s CB card

Phillip reminded me of my dad. They both grew up during the depression and learned to make do with what they had. To fix things and make them last. They both could repair just about anything. They could figure out how things worked. They were both very handy men who loved to sit and talk and reminisce. Good honest country folk.

Phillip White, 90th birthday celebration, 30 August 2014 at Zion Chatt.

90th Birthday cake

I was honored to play some of Phillip’s favorite hymns at his funeral, as was Joe to be an honorary pall bearer.

I will sure miss sitting and talking with Phillip, listening to him tell his stories about the years gone by.

May 02

Tombstone Tuesday–Louis Edwin Schwarck

Louis Edwin Schwarck, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Louis Edwin Schwarck, located in row 7 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Mr. & Mrs. E.J.
June 18, 1922   Mar. 10, 1923

Louis Edwin Schwarck was born in Blackcreek Township, Mercer County, Ohio, on 18 June 1922, the son of Edward Jacob and Clara Opal (Hughes) Schwarck. His father was born in Auglaize County, Ohio, and his mother was born in Jay County, Indiana.

Louis was baptized at Zion Chatt 6 August 1922, with Louis C. Schwarck and his wife Elizabeth serving as sponsors.

Louis died at the family home in Blackcreek Township on 10 March 1923 at the age of 8 months and 22 days. He died of pneumonia with pertussis/whooping cough contributing to his death. R.G. Ketcham and S.S. Egger were in charge of the funeral arrangements and Louis was buried on 12 March. [1]

The Schwarck family attended Zion Chatt for a time. Louis’ mother and his sister Mary Naomi were baptized by Zion’s minister in 1916. Louis’ infant sister is buried next to him in Zion’s cemetery.

This surname is spelled Schwark in Zion Chatt’s records.


[1] “Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” (accessed 30 Apr 2017), Lewis Edward Schwark, 10 Mar 1923; Black Creek, Mercer County Deaths; FHL microfilm 1992394.

Apr 28

Schlemmer School–Public School District 7, Monroe Twp, Allen Co, Indiana

About a year ago I wrote about my Grandma Schumm’s 1900 and 1902 school souvenir books from the one-room school she attended– Schlemmer School, District 7 Public School, Monroe Township, Allen County, Indiana. [1]

Thanks to Kristy K for providing me with a photo of Schlemmer School. Kristy is the great-granddaughter of Peter Shie, who went to Schlemmer School with my grandma all those years ago. Kristy said that she grew near Schlemmer School and that it was torn down a few years ago.

Public School District 7, Monroe Township, Allen Co, IN, aka Schlemmer School. (submitted photo)

District 7 Public School, also known as Schlemmer School, was located at the corner of Lortie and Hoagland roads. The above newspaper caption indicates that the school was built in 1882.

Kristy said this photo came from a local newspaper some time ago, possibly The Monroeville News or The Daily Democrat from Decatur. Note that the school was still standing when the photo was published.

My grandmother Hilda (Scaer) Schumm was born near Monroeville in Allen County, Indiana, likely within a mile of Schlemmer School. Below is a photo of the house where she was born in 1895. The photo was probably taken about 20 years ago and unfortunately I do not know exactly where this house is located or if it is still standing. Maybe some of my Indiana cousins know its location.

Once the John Scaer Home, Allen County, Indiana.

Once the John Scaer home, Allen County, Indiana.

My grandma’s family moved from the Monroeville area to east of Willshire, Ohio, in about 1903.

Thank you so much for sharing this photo, Kristy! It is wonderful to see a photo of the elementary school my grandmother attended at the turn of the century.


[1] 1900 & 1902 Souvenir Books, District 7 Public School, Monroe Twp, Allen Co, Indiana , Karen’s Chatt, 11 Mar 2016.

Apr 25

Tombstone Tuesday–Infant Son of Wm. & M.E. Hoehamer

Infant Son of William & Maggie (Kallenberger) Hoehamer, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of the infant son of William A. and Maggie E. (Kallenberger) Hoehamer, located in row 7 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Son of
Wm. & M.E.
Feb. 14, 1913

This tombstone is located in the children’s section of Zion’s Cemetery. This child was stillborn [1] and was the fourth child of William A. and Margaret Elizabeth “Maggie” (Kallenberger) Hoehamer. There is no mention of his burial in Zion Chatt’s records.

The baby’s father was William Hoehamer and was born March 1875 in Auglaize County, Ohio, to Nicholas and Anna (Manzelman) Hoehamer. William married Maggie Kallenberger on 24 May 1900, married by Zion Chatt’s Rev. R. V. Schmitt. [2] Maggie was born in January 1874 in Blackcreek Township, the daughter of Michael Andreas and Elisabeth (Burkhart) Kallenberger.

William and Maggie lived in Blackcreek Township after their marriage and had three other children:
Ida/Edie/Edith Elisabeth (1901-?)
Friedericke Louisa “Freda” (1903-1970), married John Patrick Martelock
William Andreas Jr. (1909-1978), married Alice Luella Deitsch

The mother Maggie (Kallenberger) Hoehamer died in 1950 and is buried in Zion Chatt’s cemetery. The father William Hoehamer died in 1956 and is buried in Mount Hope Cemetery, Adams County, Indiana.


[1] “Ohio Death Index, 1908-1932, 1938-1944, 1958-2007,” (accessed 24 Apr 2017), Stillbo Hoehamer, 14 Feb 1913; OHS, Columbus; ODH, State Vital Statistics Unit.

[2] “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-1994,” index and images, (accessed 21 Jul 2013), W.A. Hoehamer and Maggie E. Kallenberger, 1900; Mercer County Marriages, Vol. 8: 141.

Apr 21

Born in the 1800s

Last weekend we watched a classic movie that we have seen several times before. Driving Miss Daisy is one of those moves that you can watch over and over. Great cast, great acting, and a great story. It is set in the late 1940s and we calculated from things said in the movie that Miss Daisy was born about 1876. That just sounds like such a long time ago.

It was. It was the century before last.

Just this past week I read that the world’s oldest person, the last person known to be born in the 1800s died. Emma Morano was 117 and she died 15 April 2017 at her home in Italy. She was born 29 November 1899 and her life spanned three centuries! Just last year a 116-year old New York City woman died. [1] It is believed these were the last remaining people born in the 1800s.

That is just amazing to think about. If you were born at the very end of a century and have the right genes, you might see three centuries. My grandma Schumm almost did. She fell short by just three years.

I was born in the mid-1900s and knew people who were who were born in three different centuries. Many of you can probably say the same thing.

So I started a list of relatives I knew and remember who were born in the 1800s.

All four of my grandparents:
Carl Miller (1896-1973)
Gertrude (Brewster) Miller (1896-1973
Cornelius Schumm (1896-1986)
Hilda (Scaer) Schumm (1895-1997)

Carl & Gertrude (Brewster) Miller

Hilda (Scaer) & Cornelius Schumm

A paternal great-grandmother:
Pearl (Reid) Brewster (1880-1962)

Pearl (Reid) Brewster

Two of my grandpa Miller’s sisters:
Caroline (Miller) Caffee (1893-1988)
Clara (Miller) Reef (1899-1997)

Caroline (Miller) Caffee

Clara (Miller) Reef

Grandma Miller’s sister:
Alpha (Brewster) Derrickson (1898-1968)

Grandma Schumm’s sister and her husband:
Edna (Scaer) Schumm (1899-1985)
Emmanuel Schumm (1892-1973)

When you make a list you often forget someone and I probably did just that. There are probably some others who I met when I was a child but those mentioned are my closest relatives who I actually remember.

I also remember some of Zion Chatt’s members who were born in the 1800s:
Anna (Huffman) Bollenbacher (1879-1986)
Leah (Hartzog) Kessler (1895-1980)
Teddy Leininger (1895-1992)
Hulda (Betzel) Fisher (1896-1983)
Ercie (Butler) Ripley Reinking (1896-1994)
Homer Carr (1896-1990)
Forrest Ripley (1896-1969)
Rudy Strabel, 1897-1984)
Carrie (Becher) Leininger (1898-1988)
Carl Schroeder (1898-1987)

Years from now our descendants will probably talk about knowing people born way back in the 20th century.


[1] World’s oldest person, last to be born in 1800s, dies, USA Today on-line, 15 Apr 2017.

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