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Aug 02

Tombstone Tuesday–Harley J. & Ella (Becher) Reef

Harley J. & Ella (Becher) Reef, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

Harley J. & Ella (Becher) Reef, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Harley J. and Ella (Becher) Reef, located in row 9 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

REEF
Ella B.
1893-1967
Harley J.
1888-1960

Harley Jacob Reef was born 1 May 1888 in Jay County, Indiana, the son of Martin and Mahala (Cole) Reef.

In 1900 Harley lived with his family in Wabash, Jay County, Indiana. Their household in 1900: Martin Reef, 39, born in Ohio; Mahala, 38, Indiana; Harly J, 12; Eloise S, 2; and Adam A, 3 months. Harley’s parents had been married 17 years and three of their five children were living. [1]

In 1910 the Martin Reef family lived in Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana. Harley’s father farmed and Harley helped on the farm. Their household in 1910: Martin, 49; Mahala, 48; Jacob, 21; Eloise, 12; Adam E, 10; and Daniel S, 7. Martin and Mahala had been married 26 years and four of their six children were living. [2]

Harley Reef married Ella Becher at the Lutheran Church in Celina, Mercer County, Ohio, on 29 November 1913. They were married by Rev. Reitz. [3]

Sarah Ellen Jane “Ella” Becher was the daughter of Jacob and Mary (Kettering) Becher, born 28 March 1893 in Blackcreek Township, Mercer County, Ohio. The Bechers attended Zion Lutheran Church at Chatt.

In 1917 Harley Reef farmed and lived with his wife and one child in Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana. His World War I Draft Card indicates he was tall and slender with light brown eyes and black hair. [4]

The Harley Reef household in 1920, Jefferson Township: Harley, 31; Ella S, 26; Naomi R, 2; Imogene I, 9 months. Harley and their two daughters were born in Indiana and Ella was born in Ohio. Harley farmed and their house was mortgaged. They lived next door to Harley’s parents Martin and Mahala. [5]

Harley Reef was confirmed as an adult at Zion Chatt on 20 May 1923.

By 1930 Harley and Ella owned their home in Jefferson Township where Harley still farmed: Harley J, 41; Ella, 37; Naomi, 13; and Imogene, 11. [6]

Harley, Ella, and their two daughters lived in Jefferson Township in 1940, in the same home they lived in at least since 1935. Harley farmed, Ella did not work, and Naomi and Imogene both worked as seamstresses in an overall factory. The two daughters were not married. [7]

In 1942 Harley, age 53, and Ella lived at RR2 Berne. [8]

Harley Reef died of a coronary occlusion on 15 July 1960 at his farm home at RR 2, Berne, 5 miles east and 2 miles south of Berne. He was 72 years old. Yager Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements and he was buried on the 17th. His daughter Naomi/Mrs. Don DeArmond, Rockford, Ohio, was the informant for the information on his death certificate. His occupation was farmer and commissioner. He was survived by his wife. [9]

Ella (Becher) Reef died of a coronary thrombosis 15 January 1967 in the Adams County Hospital, Decatur, Indiana, at the age of 73. She resided at her home in Berne at the time of her death and was a retired housewife. Yager’s was in charge of the arrangements and she was buried on the 18th. Her daughter Mrs. Naomi DeArmond was the informant for the information on her death certificate. [10]

Harley and Ella (Becher) Reef had the following children:
Naomi R (1917-2003), married Don DeArmond
Imogene I (1919-1999), married Rev. Walter L Priebe

 

[1] 1900 U.S. Census, Jay, Indiana, ED 72, p2A, dwelling 27, family 29, Martin Reef; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); from FHL microfilm 1240380, from NARA microfilm T623, roll 380.

[2] 1910 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.4B, family 76, Martin Reef; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); from FHL microfilm 1374351, from NARA microfilm T624, roll 338.

[3] “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 27 Jul 2016), H.J. Reef & Ella Becher, 29 Nov 1913; from Mercer Marriages, Vol. 10, p.335; from FHL microfilm 914959.

[4] U.S. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, Adams, Indiana, Harley Jacob Reef; Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); WWI Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, Washington DC, NARA M1509, roll 1439777.

[5] 1920 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.9A, dwelling 178, family 192, Harley G Reef; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); from NARA microfilm T625, roll 420.

[6] 1930 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.3B, dwelling 58,  Harry J Reef; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); from FHL microfilm 2340309, from NARA microfilm T626, roll 574.

[7] 1940 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 1-4, p.4B, line 76, Harley Reff; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); from NARA microfilm T627, roll 1024.

[8] U.S. World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942,  Fourth Registration for Indiana, NAI no.623285, Harley Jacob Reef; Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016); Records of the Selective Service System, Record Group No. 147.

[9] Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-2011, #022906, Harley J Reef, 15 Jul 1960; database on-line, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016);  Indiana State Board of Health, Death Certificates, 1900-2011, microfilm from Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

[10] Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-2011, #000005, Ella Reef, 15 Jan 1967; database on-line, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Jul 2016);  Indiana State Board of Health, Death Certificates, 1900-2011, microfilm from Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

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