Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Elizabeth Bruns (1860-1916) - "52 Ancestors"

Hello again. Somewhere along the line I missed another week of writing. This is week 46 of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. The last week has been interesting. I have started trying to find the right person to write about several times. Saturday morning I started working on the Brucken family again only to end up in the Koverman family. So I took a break and went on an airboat ride with the family. It was a beautiful day, sunny and in the 70s. When I got back home I tried again. This time I ended up in the Hilgefort family. I found a young man who died in an accident in August Wise's sawmill. The newspaper article was pretty graphic:

While Henry Hilgefort was in the act of mending a fly wheel belt in a saw mill near Berlin, 6 miles south of here, he was caught in some way and hurled with tremendous force around the machinery, mangling him in such a way as to produce instant death. He was picked up in pieces, and could not be recognized.

Joseph Farno and Elizabeth Bruns Farno
On Sunday, I tried to focus my research again and started in my Bruns and Hilgefort line but ended up in the Mescher and Dahlinghaus lines. I did get a lot of research done and found several new families to add to my research but I just couldn't find the right person to write about. I blame it on my ADD. For some reason I kept coming back to the Bruns line as I was doing my research and then I found this wonderful photograph of Elizabeth Bruns and her husband Joseph Farno. So I decided to work on her story. She is my 1st cousin 3 times removed.

Elizabeth Bruns was the daughter of Johann Heinrich Frederich "Frederick" Bruns (1835-1907) and Anna Mary Buschman (1838-1868). She was born 16 November 1860 near Ft. Loramie, Shelby County, Ohio. She was the second of five children born to this marriage. Her siblings were Joseph (~1859-?), Herman (1863-1867), John (1865-1938) and Bernard (1867-1941). Herman died on 14 July 1867, four months after Bernard was born. Her mother died a little more than a year later at the age of 30, on 9 November 1868, one week before Elizabeth's eighth birthday.

Elizabeth's father, Frederick Bruns remarried about two years later to Maria Engel Speller (1843-1914), a German immigrant. They had three more children, Henry (1871-1959), Herman (~1874-??), and Frederic William (1880-1937).

Elizabeth grew up on the family farm near Ft. Loramie and married Peter Brucken on 25 October 1881 in St. Michael's Church in Ft. Loramie. This marriage did not last very long since Peter died about seven months later on 15 May 1882. Elizabeth then married Joseph Farno (Varno) (1858-1920). Joseph was the son of Bernard Farno and Catherine Cemont, both immigrants from Germany. Joseph grew up on his family's farm in Cranberry Prairie, Mercer County, Ohio and decided to make farming his career also. In 1900, he and Elizabeth, along with their seven children, Frederick John, William Henry, Julius John, Ferdinand Louis, Mary Sophia, Rosa Clara and Antonio Henry were living on a rented farm in Butler Township, Mercer County, Ohio.  Two of the children, Frederick and William, were working on the farm while most of the other children, except Antonio who was too young, were attending school. By 1910, the family had moved to another rented farm. This one was located in Granville Township, Mercer County, Ohio. Two of their children, Rose and Anthony, were living at the home. The next year was a busy one for the family. Their son, Louis Ferdinand, married Mayme Ahrns on 8 February 1911. Their daughter, Rose Clara, married Bernard John Schwieterman three months later on 10 May 1911. John Julius married Frances Louise Quinter on 6 September 1911.

About 1913, Joseph and Elizabeth moved to Minster and lived on N. Frankfort Street.  Elizabeth died on 19 April 1916, at the age of 55. After her death, Joseph moved to Frenchtown, Darke County, Ohio where he died on 22 July 1920.

Exactly two years after Elizabeth died, her son Louis Ferdinand died on 19 April 1918. Louis had been married to Mayme Ahrns for seven years and they had three children, Anna Maria (age 5), Bernard (age 2), and William Louis (2 weeks old). They were living in Deshler, Ohio at the time and Louis was working for the Wells Fargo Express Company traveling between Pittsburgh and Chicago transporting packages. On Friday the 19th of April at 3:20 a.m. he was carrying packages to the B&O RR car to prepare for the early morning departure from Defiance, Ohio. As he approached the train, it moved and he fell. His legs were instantly severed by the rail wheels. He died at the Defiance hospital five hours later.

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