Joseph Matthias Meyer was born on 5 November 1895 to John Herman (1857-1935) and Catherine Baumer Meyer (1862-1934) near McCartyville, Van Buren Township, Shelby County, Ohio. His father owned a farm where Joseph grew up along with his 15 siblings. Joseph's siblings were Anthony J (b. 1881), Elizabeth Catherine (1883-1917), Louis D (b. 1884), Cecelia Josephine (1886-1978), George H (b. 1887), John R (b. 1888), Rosa M (b. 1890), Kittie E (b. 1892), Rosa (b. 1892), Frank Christopher (1893-1966), Dorothy C (1898-1986), Charles G (1899-2001), Adolph V (1901-1988), Anna (1903-1985), and Veronica (1906-1973). Joseph finished 8th grade, which was customary for the children of farmers during this period. Joseph was still living on the family farm and working as a farm hand at the time he registered for the World War I draft.
On 11 February 1919, Joseph married Henrietta E Altermatt (1896-1986). He continued the family practice of farming on his own land in Turtle Creek Township, Shelby County, Ohio. In the 1920 US Census, he is listed as owning a farm with a mortgage and having a 1 month old son, Vernon.
The 1930 US Census lists Joseph (age 34), his wife Henrietta (age 34), and seven children; Vernon (age 10), Cleona (age 9), Kenneth (age 7), Wilma (age 5), Lawrence (age 3), Irene (age 2), and Viola (age 5 months). Additionally, his mother-in-law, Mary Carroll (age 69) is living with the family.
|Children of Joseph Meyer|
In 1940, the family farm is valued at $2,500. Joseph (age 44), his wife Henrietta (age 44) and nine remaining children Vernon (age 20), Cleona (age 19), Kenneth (age 18), Wilma (age 15), Lawrence (age 14), Irene (age 12), Viola (age 10), John (age 4) and Joseph (age 1) are living in the home. Kenneth is working on the farm. His brother Vernon is employed as a machinist with an income of $1350/year. Joseph registered for the draft for World War II at the age of 46. He lists his employer as Monarch Machine Tool Company, in Sidney, Ohio. One thing I like about the 1940s time frame is the phone numbers. His phone number was Circle 224 (just in case you wanted to call).
At least two of his sons were veterans of World War II. Vernon was an Army veteran and Kenneth was a Navy veteran. Kenneth died on 7 February 1962 at the age of 39 from injuries caused by an automobile accident on Interstate 70. Joseph's wife Henrietta died on 10 February 1986 at a long term care facility in Minster, Ohio. She was 89 years old at the time. Two years later, on 5 December 1988, Joseph died at Joint Township Hospital in St. Marys, Ohio at the age of 93.