When Connie Schneider Krause graciously shared her translation of the obituary of Maria Margarethe Hild Schuetz with me I was so excited! I knew so very little about this grandmother who came from Nassau in 1845. One time I asked my Grandma Lillie if she had any memories of her great- grandmother. She would have died when Grandma was about nine years old. She had a very vivid memory. Grandma told me her great-grandmother always wore an apron with a pocket. Whenever the grandchildren came around she would reach into her pocket and bring out a piece of hard candy for each child.
Maria Margarethe was born 6 December 1807 in Langenbach which was located in the Province of Hacheburg in Nassau (Germany). About 1838 she married Ludwig Schütz. She was almost seven years older than him according to their tombstone dates. Her obituary states “she shared 54 years in a happy marriage.”
In 1845 Ludwig, Maria, and two small sons, Carl, age 7, and Louis (Ludwig Jr?) made the journey to Texas aboard the Bark Harriet with 28 other families and a total of 175 passengers. They sailed from Antwerp on 31st of October and arrived in Texas around the 31st of December. The ship was traveling under the auspices of the Adelsverein and were headed to New Braunfels, a German colony in the Republic of Texas. With all the hardships they had to face just traveling from Nassau to Texas, Maria Margarethe still faced another hardship. Her granddaughter Annie Schuetz Saunders said Louis died during the voyage and was buried at sea. Another fact I found in a one paragraph biography about Ludwig, on file at the Sophienburg Museum and Archives in New Braunfels, was a baby girl was born to them in Galveston but did not survive. Her obituary does not make any mention of these hardships but there is one sentence which tells about this time in her life. “On December 27, they landed in Galveston and then from there they went to Indianola where they stayed about 8 days and saw much sickness and had pity for all the suffering occurring there.”
She died at the ripe age of 96 years and 11 months on 4 November 1904. This is my favorite quote from her obituary “The deceased was vigorous for her age; she could still read and do needlework without glasses. She was respected and loved by all those that knew her.” She sounds delightful!
Thank you Connie Schneider Krause for translating and sharing this obituary with me.
“Maria Margarethe Hild Schuetz.” obituary. New Braunfelser Zeitung (New Braunfels), 17 November 1904, sect. C, p 4; translated from German by Connie Schneider Krause.
“Ludwig Schuetz” Sophienburg Museum and Archives, New Braunfels, Texas.
Personal Interview. Annie Schuetz Saunders, 1970.
Personal Interview. Lille Schuetz Adam, 1970.