Tombstone Tuesday-Lamb Symbol

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Even though the notifications did not go out I continued to post two blog posts a week, as I have for the past 10 years. Those, along with all the posts I have ever written, are always here on the website to read. So, if you haven’t been checking the website regularly in the past few weeks you have some catching up to do.

Now, for today’s Tombstone Tuesday, the lamb symbol on a tombstone.    

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, Ohio, 1913 lamb, Florence Marie Schumm, 2 mo.

A lamb carved on a tombstone usually marks the grave of a young child.

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio, 1873 lamb, Heinrich Hoffmann, 8 mo.

A lamb symbolizes purity, innocence, and youth.  

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio, 1872 lamb, Frederick W Brandt, 26 d.

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio, 1872 lamb, Anna M Wick, 2 y.

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, Ohio, 1892 lamb, Friedrich Stegmeier, 2 yr.

This symbol was often used in the late 1800s, usually carved on marble tombstones. Marble markers are subject to weathering and acid rain. As a result, after many years in the elements, the figures and inscriptions on marble markers are often worn and hard to read. Even so, you can usually determine if the carving is a lamb. So, when the inscription is illegible or most of the tombstone is destroyed, if you see a lamb on the marker you can usually figure that a child is buried there. This can be helpful if you are looking for a child’s grave near the parents’ tombstone on in a family plot.

Kessler (aka Liberty) Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio, lamb on double marker, illegible.

Postmasters in the Hamlet of Willshire

In recent blog posts I listed the appointed postmasters in northern Mercer County from the 1840s through 1971, in the townships of Black Creek, Liberty, and Dublin.

Today I continue that list with the postmasters in another local village, Willshire, in Van Wert County.  

Wikipedia shows that Willshire was founded in 1822 by Captain James Riley, that it had a post office as early as 1822, and that it was the first county seat in Van Wert County.

Overton describes Willshire as a hamlet on the St. Marys River, near the west edge of the township, settled as early as 1821, with post office by 1837; the site had been known as Devil’s Race Ground.  

I found another reference to the Devil’s Race Ground in the reminiscences of William Willshire Riley, the son of Captain James Riley: …Proceeding on their journey, Capt. Riley’s party arrived, in January, 1821, at the temporary cabin which had been prepared for them, “about one-fourth of a mile south of the present bridge in the town of Willshire.” . . . . The wolves prowled around us all night, keeping the children pretty well scared. This was the first night of the first settlers in Van Wert county at the “Devil’s Race Ground.”

Willshire, Ohio, 1886

Willshire’s postmasters and when they were appointed, through 1971:

Ansel Blossom, 9 Jan 1827
Charles Mount, 1 Feb 1842
C. Hartzog, 1 Feb 1842
Ephraim Johnson, 23 Jul 1845
Charles Mount, 22 Jul 1846
Aaron More, 8 Aug 1853
James W. Major, 20 May 1854
Wm B. Harb, 2 Jun 1855
James W. Major, 13 May 1860 [?]
Benjamin F. Hayes, 6 Jul 1863
Jesse Hartzog, 15 Feb 1864
John W. Pearce, 5 Jun 1865
Phineas S. Russel, 11 Jan 1867
Harrison H. Harper, 28 Jan 1867
Josiah H. Wilmore, 30 May 1867
George A. Dettmer, 2 Dec 1867
Charles Vance, 18 Oct 1867
Wilson Johnson, 3 Jul 1871
Jesse Hartzog, 29 Dec 1873
Timothy Hawkins Jr, 24 Mar 1875
Sylvester Brock, 6 May 1878
Wilbur H. Brock, 1 Jun 1881[?]
Christopher C. [?] Nichols, 21 Aug 1885
William W. Knott, 15 Aug 1889
Thomas M. Thorpe, 18 Aug 1893
Daniel G. Brittson, 6 Dec 1897
Jacob R. Beam, 10 Dec 1901
Myrtle B. Fisher, 16 Jan 1911
Myrtle B. Johnson, 10 Jun 1914
William G. Hoffer, 12 Jul 1918, reappointed 3 Feb 1922, 6 Feb 1926, 20 Mar 1934, 15 Apr 1938
Miss S. Gretchen Hoffer, 3 Jan 1940
John E. Reichard, 25 Jun 1940

Note: Myrtle B. (Beam) Fisher, postmaster in 1911, married Walter B. Johnson in Van Wert County on 4 June 1914, and is shown as Myrtle B. Johnson just a few days after their marriage. Myrtle was the daughter of Jacob R. and Mary (Detterer) Beam and was previously married to David A. Fisher. 

Sources:

Julie Minot Overton, The Ohio Genealogical Society, Ohio Towns and Townships to 1900: A Location Guide, (Mansfield, Ohio : Penobscot Press, 2000).

Record of Appointment of Postmasters, 1832-1971, National Archives, Van Wert County, Roll #101, Target 16, Vol. 9 (1832-43) p.187 (penned), p.273 (stamped), Vol. 15 (1843-57) p.371-2, Vol. 25A (1857-73) p.428, Vol. 38 (1873-1891), p.476-77, & Vol. 79 (1891-1930) p.577-8, and Vol. 55 (1930-30 Sep 1971); digital image, Ancestry.com, viewed 14 Jan 2021.

Tombstone Tuesday-Maria A. (Pflueger) Schumm

Maria A. (Pflueger) Schumm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Maria (Pflueger) Schumm, located in row 5 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Maria A.
Ehefrau von
G.M. Schumm
Geboren
Den 20, Juni
1820
Gest. Den 25
Marz 1903
SCHUMM

Maria A., wife of G.M. Schumm, born the 20 June 1820, died the 25 March 1903.

Anna Maria Pflueger was born 20 June 1820 in Schrozberg, Wuerttemberg, the daughter of Christian and Anna Barbara (Sekel) Pflueger.

“Maria” immigrated with her parents and 5 siblings in 1832 and lived in Holmes County, Ohio, for a few years.  Maria married George Martin Schumm there on 1 May 1838. George Martin (1812-1871) was also a German immigrant.

George Martin and Maria (Pflueger) Schumm lived in Holmes County in 1840 [1] but moved to Van Wert County by December 1847, where their daughter Margaretha Barbara was born, according to Zion Schumm’s records.

The George Martin Schumm family in 1850: George, 38; Mary, 30; Fred, 11; Louis, 9; George, 8; John, 6; Rosina, 5; Margaret, 2; Mary, 1; Elisabeth Flecker [Pflueger]; and Jacob Bentz, 24. The father George Martin was a farmer. [2]

The George Martin Schumm family in 1860: George, 47; Mary, 46; Frederick, 21; Louis, 19; George, 18; John, 17; Rosina, 15; Mary, 11; Jacob, 9; Christian, 7; Henry, 5; and Martin, 4 months. [3]

1870: George, 57; Mary, 50; Mary [no age]; Jacob, 19; Henry, 16; Martin, 10; and Sophia, 7. Husband George Henry was a farmer. [4]

George Martin Schumm died in 1871 and in 1880 Maria, enumerated as May, lived with son Henry Schumm and his wife Anna. Their household in 1880: May [Maria] Schumm, 59, widow; Henry Schumm, 35; Anna Schumm, 23; Fred Buchner [?], 19, farm labor; and Peter Sults, 30, day labor. [5] 

In 1900 Maria Schumm continued to live with her son Henry “H.G.” and his wife Anna (Roehm) and their 5 children: Henry G Schumm, 45, head; Anna, 43, wife; Amelia, 19; Anna, 17; Henrietta, 15; Walter E, 11; Ester, 6; and Maria, 79, mother, widow. [6]

Maria (Pflueger) Schumm

Maria Schumm died in Willshire Township, near Schumm, on 25 March 1903, following a severe coughing spell, according to Zion Schumm’s records. According to her Van Wert County death record she died of old age. She was 82 years, 9 months, and 5 days old and was buried on the 29th.

Maria A. (Pflueger) Schumm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

George and Maria (Pflueger) Schumm had the following children:
Jacob “Frederick” (1839-1927), married Maria Germann
Louis M. Sr (1840-1922, married Mina Domke
George M. (Rev.) (1841-1917, married Charlotte Breuninger; married Amalia Justine Markworth
John (1843-1864)
Anna “Rosina” (1845-1928), married John Roehm
Margaretha Barbara (1847-1851)
Marie “Mary” (1849-c1876), married Claus L. Peters
George “Jacob” (1851-1895), married Lena Kellerman; married Amalia K. Backhaus
George “Christian” (1852-1895)
George Henry “H.G.” (1854-1939), married Anna Roehm; married Mina Kroemer
Jacob Wilhelm “Will” (1857-1858)
Jacob “Martin” (1859-1909), married Elizabeth “Lizzie” Ehrenmann
Anna Magdelina “Sophia” (1862-1924)

Maria (Pflueger) (1820-1903) & George Martin Schumm (1812-1871)

[1] 1840 U.S. Census, Millersbury, Holmes, Ohio, p.292, line 3, Chris Filenger; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8057/ : viewed 10 Jan 2021.

[2] 1850 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, p.166B, dwelling 114, family 131, George Shuman; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8054/ : viewed 10 Jan 2021.

[3] 1860 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, p.425, dwelling 1068, family 1062, George Schanen; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7667/ : viewed 10 Jan 2021.  

[4] 1870 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, p.439A, dwelling 131, family 132, George Schumm; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7163/ : viewed 10 Jan 2021.

[5] 1880 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, ED154, p.450C, family 132, May Schumm; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/6742/ : viewed 10 Jan 2021.

[6] 1900 U. S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, ED97, p.10, dwelling 193, family 206, Henry G Schumm; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7602/ : viewed 10 Jan 2021.

Dublin Township Post Offices

Dublin Township in Mercer County, Ohio, had three post offices at one time. The oldest was established by 1836 and was first known as Shanes Crossing. It was located at Shanesville, now known as Rockford, which was founded in 1820 and is the oldest village in Mercer County.  

Dublin Township, Mercer County, Ohio, 1900 map.

The second of Dublin Township’s post offices was established around 1837 and was located in the village of Mercer. That post office was first known as Ruckman’s and the name was changed to Mercer in 1837. It operated until 1957 and the mail was sent to Mendon after that.   

For a short time around 1888 there was a third post office in Dublin Township, known as Shaffer’s Station, located on the north edge of the township, north of Rockford.

The Dublin Township postmasters and when they were appointed, through 1971:

Shanes Crossing (name changed to Rockford Post Office by 1890): post office on the railroad junction at the St. Marys River at the town of Rockford:
William B. Hedges [no date; before 13 Apr 1836]
Gideon Mott, 13 Apr 1836
Wm B. Hedges, 9 Oct 1838
George S. Barks, 29 Mar 1839
Cornelius B. Whitley, 23 Mar 1846
George F. Borcher, 8 Aug 1853
Joel F. Moors, 22 Jul 1863
John P. Dysert, 22 Jul 1872
George F Borcher, 4 Oct 1866
David H. Robison, 22 Feb 1869
Gabriel Laukart, 8 Oct 1869
William E. Moore, 9 Jul 1890
James B. Shock [?], 19 Aug 1893
Grant Coats, 15 Jul 1897, reappointed 24 Feb 1900 & 13 Dec 1900
William E. Moore, reappointed 15 Mar 1910
Rolla N. Frysinger, 6 Jun 1913, reappointed 21 July 1917
Harry B. Miller, 11 Jul 1921 & 9 Nov 1921, reappointed 17 Dec 1925
Mrs. Minnie A. Jackson, 16 Mar 1926, 4 Feb 1927, 14 Feb 1931, reappointed 15 Jan 1935
George R. Kinder, 15 Feb 1935, reappointed 1 Oct 1935 & 1 Oct 1939
Clyde W. Snyder, 30 Apr 1951
Blaine VanTilburg, 16 Mar 1953, 31 Jul 1955
Keith L. Rutledge, 7 Jan 1966, 19 May 1967

Mercer (formerly Ruckman’s Post Office; name changed in 1837), town in the southeast corner of the township, laid out in 1833:
Samuel Ruckman, 22 Apr 1837
Joseph Grier, 26 Oct 1841
Moses Collins, 19 Feb 1842
Alfred Hancock, 10 Jul 1845
Elihu Compton, 6 Jan 1846
Giles I. (?) Sheldon, 28 Jun 1847
Theo G. Dugdale, 10 Aug 1848
Oliver Ellis, 27 Apr 1849
Smith H. Clark, 11 Mar 1852
Andrew J. Harb, 3 Nov 1859
Aaron B. Tullis, 16 Sep 1861
David Ayres, 14 Jun 1865
William Ward, 22 Nov 1865
Michael Adams, 23 Feb 1867
Rezin Ketcham, 5 May 1873
Thos J. McLaughlin, 7 May 1884
Rezin Ketcham, 26 Jan 1885
John F. Disher, 20 Mar 1886
Miss Millie McKaig, 27 Jul 1889
Irena E. Sutton, 8 Aug 1893
William P. Hill, 15 Jul 1897
William H. Thompson, 21 Dec 1901
Charles W. Thomas, 9 Feb 1907
Alice Daugherty, 3 Apr 1907
Ralph S. Beougher, 1 Feb 1940
Troy Marsee, 15 Jul 1946
Sherman W. Marsee, 1 Apr 1947
Mrs. Birdie E. Marsee, 1 Feb 1949, 1 Jul 1949
Mrs. Dollie B. Halfhill, 28 Oct 1949, 1 Apr 1950

On 15 November 1957 the Mercer Post Office was discontinued and the mail was sent to Mendon.

Shaffer’s Station, a railroad station at the north edge of township and county with a post office set up by 1888:
Joseph C. Baker, 4 Aug 1886

Shaffer Station Post Office, Dublin Township, Mercer County, Ohio, 1888 map.

On 6 June 1887 Shaffer’s Station Post Office was discontinued and the mail was sent to Shane’s Crossing.

Sources:

Mercer County Chapter OGS, Mercer County, Ohio Combined 1888, 1900 Atlases and 1876 Map of Mercer County, Ohio, (Mt. Vernon, IN : Windmill Publication, Inc., 1999).

Julie Minot Overton, The Ohio Genealogical Society, Ohio Towns and Townships to 1900: A Location Guide, (Mansfield, Ohio : Penobscot Press, 2000).

Record of Appointment of Postmasters, 1832-1971, National Archives, Roll #100, Target 12, Vol. 9 (1832-43) p.240,41?, Vol. 15 (1843-57) p.320-21, Vol. 25A (1857-73) p.294, Vol. 38 (1873-1891), p.316, & Vol. 79 (1891-1930) p.367-368, and Vol. 54 (1930-30 Sep 1971); digital image, Ancestry.com, viewed 2 Jan 2021.

Tombstone Tuesday-Palm Branch Symbol

Today’s tombstone symbol is the palm branch, also known as a palm frond.

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, 1901 Palm Branch, Curtis Schumm

A palm branch symbolizes victory, rejoicing, triumph, immortality, and peace. For Christians the palm branch is associated with victory over death and eternal life.

Jesus rode triumphantly into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday as people waved palm branches and put them down on the road before him.

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, 1897 Palm Branch, Barbara Schinnerer

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, 1901 Palm Branch, Anna Schumm

Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Van Wert County, 1905 Palm Branch, Elizabeth & Friedrich Schinnerer

Greenbriar Cemetery, Van Wert County, 1894 Palm Branch, Anna Seaman