Conrad's Stories

The life and times of the Conrad Adam family in Kendall County, Texas

Elfrieda S. Bauer, born on 27 April 1895/1896

Elfrieda is the daughter of Ernst Bauer and Rosa Bender Bauer and granddaughter of Phillip and Marie Peters Bauer. Her tombstone and death certificate state she was born in 1895, but most likely, she was born in 1896.   When she was twenty, she married Charles Henry Hoeke on 16 November 1915 in Kendall County.  Her husband Charles was born in New Braunfels on 17 July 1894.  He worked for Wellceus [spelling ?] and Rickmann as a laborer.  He is described as short, slender, with gray eyes and light brown hair on his World War I Draft Registration Card.  In 1920 Charles was a salesman at a local grocery store in Boerne, and he and his wife are living in a rented house.

Seven years later, Elfrieda is going by the name Alpha and is married to Kearby Crockett.  They are living at 316 Regina Street in San Antonio and she is working as a clerk.  Kearby is the manager of the Tent and Awning Company.   In 1930, Alpha states on the census she is divorced.  Her sister Harriet Schrader and niece Constance Gore, age eight, live with her. 

San Antonio Light, 19 November 1928

A few months later, Alpha Crockett married Michael “Mike” Solomon.  Mike was born in Victoria, Canada, on 23 February 1897.  Both of his parents were born in Austria.  On his Naturalization papers completed in 1938, he stated he married Alpha Crockett on 12 July 1930 in San Antonio, but they were no longer married.  He said she was born in Spring Branch on 27 April 1896.  After coming to the United States in 1920, Mike joined the Army and was stationed at Camp Normoyle* with her sister’s future husband Fritz Klaeden.  In 1940, Mike is stationed at Patterson Field in Bath, Greene County, Ohio.  He is a mechanic helper and single.

In District Court Case 829, Arnold Bauer et al. vs. Rosa Hood et al., in 1934, it is recorded that Elfrieda is a widow.  I located a grave in the Ft. Sam National Cemetery for Mike Solomon, born 23 February 1897  in Canada and died 15 August 1989 at age 92 in Bexar County.  His service years were 1925-1946, and during World War II, his rank was Master Sergeant in the U.S. Army Air Corps.  I think this is the same Mike Solomon. Perhaps, it was easier to say she was a widow rather divorced.  

I cannot locate her on the 1940 census.  She shows up again in 1942 when she files a quit-claim deed for a ¾ lot in Artesian Gardens to Mike Solomon, a single man.  In 1948 she was listed in the San Antonio City Directory as Mrs. Alpha Solomon living at 111 Wellington and was employed by Grants.  On 22 January 1949 she married Roy L. Gorsic in  Seguin, Guadalupe County, Texas.  They were married by County Judge A. W. Saegert and no witnesses were recorded.  The final time I locate Alpha is on 25 August 1967 in an obituary in the San Antonio Light as Mrs. Alpha S. Gorsic.  She was 72, lived at 111 Wellington, and was a St. Paul Lutheran Church member. The church is located at 106 Roseborough Street.  Reverend Robert H. Studtman signed her death certificate, performed the funeral,   and sold her house on 111 Wellington.    Survivors were her sister Mrs. Hattie Klaeden and brother Arnold M. Bauer, nieces Mrs. Jean Weidman, Mrs. Connie Sutherland, and several great-nieces and nephews.  She was buried in the Roselawn Memorial Park, now San Fernando City Cemetery #3.

*On a side note, I was not familiar with Camp Normoyle and looked it up.  Here is what I learned.  The Handbook of Texas describes this camp. “Camp Normoyle was established during World War I. It was located across the railroad at the northeast corner of Kelly Field in western San Antonio. In 1920 the base served as an army vocational school. Camp Normoyle was a quartermaster ordnance and engine-replacement depot for Kelly Field during World War II and was merged into Kelly Field in 1944.”   This camp was named after Major James Edward Normoyle, who died in February 1916 from blood poisoning.  He is remembered for assisting in the Mexican Border mobilization in 1911, directing flood relief in 1912 when the Mississippi River overflowed, and later in the great Dayton flood in March 1913.

Another fun fact, Elfrieda means elf, magical being with strength.  It is a form of the Old German name Alfreda. Alpha being a nickname.

Alpha is my paternal grandma Lillie Adam’s first cousin.

Crockett, Kearby C. Obituary. 7 October 1960. Genealogybank.com.

“Discharge Four in Row Over Dog.” San Antonio Light (San Antonio, Tx), 19 November 1928. Genealogybank.com.

Grosic, Alpha Solomon. Bexar County Deeds, Vol. 5832, page 634.

Gorsic, Mrs. Alpha. Obituary. San Antonio Light. 25 August 1967. Genealogybank.com.

Kendall County Marriage Records, Kendall County Courthouse, Boerne, Texas.

Leatherwood, Art, “Camp Normoyle,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed 11 January 2021, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/camp-normoyle. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Major James Edward Normoyle. Arlington National Cemetery. James Edward Normoyle, Major, United States Army (arlingtoncemetery.net).

Solomon, Alpha to Mike Solomon. San Antonio Light. 9 October 1942. San Antonio Light. Genealogybank.com.

Texas Death Certificates, Ancestry.com.

U.S. Census, Ancestry.com

U.S. Naturalization Papers. Ancestry.com. U. S. World War I Draft Registration Card, Ancestry.com.

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