Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Joseph C. & Katherine Dorothy (Weis) Wurm

Family of Joseph and Katherine (Weis) Wurm - photo taken in 1900
Left to right: Alois, Katherine, Hattie, Joseph and Oleva

Joseph and Katherine (Weis) Wurm
Joseph C. Wurm, son of John Christian and Johanna (Lehman) Wurm, was born 22 Aug 1854 in Seneca County, Ohio and died 20 Jan 1952 at Hannah, Grand Traverse County, Michigan.  He was baptised at St. Bernards Catholic Church in New Washington, Crawford County, Ohio on 23 Aug 1854.  Sponsors were Wilhelm Lehman and Anna Lehman.  Joseph married Katherine Dorothy Weis on 19 Feb 1884 at St. Sebastian Catholic Church in Bismark, Huron County, Ohio.  She was born 29 June 1862 in Germany to Peter and Barbara (-) Weis and died 2 Jan 1951 at Hannah, Grand Traverse County, Michigan.

Obituary of Joseph Wurm - provided by Dorothy Simon-Tibbe
"Joseph Wurm, 97, a resident of this area for the past 55 years, died early Sunday morning at the home of his son, Alois Wurm, south of Hannah.

Mr. Wurm was born August 22, 1854, in Seneca County, Ohio, the son of Christian and Johanna Wurm.  On February 19, 1884, he was united in marriage to Katherine Wise and to this union were born four children.  In 1897 the family moved to the Hannah community.

Mr. Wurm was a member of the Holy Name Society and also a member of St. Mary's church of Hannah.

Surviving are two children, Mrs. Frank Clous and Alois J. Wurm, both of Hannah, 23 grandchildren, 47 great grandchildren and four great great grandchildren.  His wife preceded him in death in 1951.  One daughter also preceded him in death in 1929 and one son died in infancy.

Funeral services will be held from St. Mary's church, Hannah, Wednesday at 9:30 a.m., Rev. Clement Sigmund will officiate and burial will be made in St. Mary's Cemetery, Hannah."

Obituary of Katherine D. (Weis) Wurm - Record Eagle, Traverse City, Michigan, 2 Jan 1951, page 11
"Mrs. Katherine D. Wurm, 88, a resident of the area for the past 54 years, died this morning at her farm home south of Hannah.

Mrs. Wurm was born January 29, 1862 in Germany and in 1880 came with her brother to Ohio.  On Feb. 19, 1884, she was united in marriage to Joseph Wurm in Ohio, and in 1897 the family moved to this community.

Mrs. Wurm was a member of the Rosary Altar Society and a member of St. Mary's Church, Hannah.

Surviving besides her husband are two children, Mrs. Frank Clous of Hannah and Alois, at home; 23 grandchildren; 43 great grandchildren; and 3 great great grandchildren.  One daughter preceded her in death in 1929 and one son died in infancy.

Funeral services will be held from St. Mary's church in Hannah at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, with Rev. Clement Sigmund officiating.  Burial will be made in St. Mary's Cemetery.  The Rosary will be recited at the farm home south of Hannah church tonight and Wednesday at 8:00 p.m."

Gravestone of Joseph and Katherine (Weis) Wurm - St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery, Hannah, Grand Traverse County, Michigan
The following recollections, about Katherine (Weis) Wurm's immigration to American and about she and Joseph's relocation to Hannah, Michigan, were written in 1976 by Alois J. Wurm, son of Joseph and Katherine (Weis) Wurm, and shared with me by Alois's daughter, Dorothy Simon-Tibbe.
"Peter Weis was the Bergmeister (mayor) of that Village (Rhine Falls Berin) and a school official, who with his wife Barbara had seven children, one of whom is Grandma Katherine Dorothy Weis, who married Grandpa Joseph Wurm.  Katherine Weis came to America as a young lady of 18 only to help her brother John on the passage as his wife was very ill and they had three little children.  Katherine Weis had no intention of staying in America as she was from a wealthy family, her father being the Bergmeister, a school official, and a very important man. The passage was so horrid, and they were on the ocean for three months.  It was so cold that she froze her feet, as they were traveling by freighter and not a passenger ship.  Grandma Katherine vowed never to get on a ship again, so was 'captive' in America.  They settled in the farming area near Monroeville, Ohio, and she continued to care for her nieces and nephews.

Thomas Worm, Josephine Umlor's father, arrived here [Hannah, Michigan] from Ohio about 1880-1884 and settled in the woods by cutting out a spot and rolling logs together to build a home for themselves.  There were 12 children, about 8 boys.  This spot was north of the church about 3/4 mile but there was no church yet, and no road leading north of the Hannah corner.  All was large timber.

My father and mother not being happy in their set-up in Ohio, wrote to Uncle Tom as he called him, but the letters always came back.  The post office had no luck in finding Thomas Worm.  But in 1897 they did get the answer in the form of an invitation to come because he wanted a relative besides himself to live in the area with him.

So in the fall of 1897 my father came here and bought 40 acres where we now live with a small house and a log barn for $640.00.  There was about 25 acres clear; the rest woods.  It was on Dec. 7, 1897 they came by train with some farm tools and furniture all in a railroad box-car, and stayed at Uncle Tom's.  As Aunt Hattie (sister to Alois) puts it they slept 5 in one bed a few nights they were there.

Joseph and Katherine Wurm rented 1/2 of a box-car, and hauled all their belongings in this manner.  They brought a team of oxen, two cows, some chickens, all their household items, and their entire family, rode in this same box-car.  The wagon and oxen were the last on and first off.  They brought all their farm tools...all their worldly possessions, as no one had heard of 'selling' or 'auctions'...what you owned, you kept for your lifetime.  They came into the train depot at Kingsley, which was just east of where the co-op is.  The oxen were again hitched to the wagon, and the cattled tied on behind to follow as they trecked westward the six miles or so to hannah, and to the Tom Worm homestead 3/4 mile north of the present St. Mary's church corner."

61st Anniversary Article for Joseph and Katherine (Weis) Wurm - Record Eagle, Traverse City, Michigan, 14 Feb 1945, page 5
"Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Wurm of Hannah, who are celebrating their 61st wedding anniversary today.  Tonight a family dinner will be served in their home in commemoration of the event.

Joseph Wurm and Miss Katherine Weis were married at St. Sebastian's Church, Bismarck, Ohio, February 19, 1884.  After making their home in Seneca County, Ohio, where they resided on a farm for many years and were Mr. Wurm was an employee of the Pennsylvania railroad.  In 1897 they moved to Michigan where they purchased a farm near Hannah which has since been their home.

They are the parents of two children, Mrs. Hattie Clous of Hannah, and Alois, who resides with his parents.  Two children, a daughter died in 1929, and a son died in 1895.  They also have 22 grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren.

Both Mr. and Mrs. Wurm are enjoying good health."

Joseph C. and Katherine Dorothy (Weis) Wurm had four children:

1 - Hedwig Maria Louisa "Hattie" Wurm (1887-1986)
2 - Innocent Joseph Alphonsus Wurm was born 22 Jan 1891 in Venice Township, Seneca County, Ohio and died 12 Jan. 1894 in Seneca County, Ohio.
3 - Olivia Philomena "Oleva" Wurm (1894-1929)
4 - Aloysius Joseph "Alois" Wurm (1899-1990)

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