Conrad's Stories

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

Bertha Bauer George
Photo courtesy Susie, a great-granddaughter

When Bertha Bauer was born in 1857,  her parents, Philipp and Marie Peters Bauer, lived in Comal County.  Her father was an experienced carpenter. As soon as he acquired land, he probably built a small log cabin for his family.   Like most Germans who came to Texas, her father was a farmer.  When she was born,  he owned 160 acres of land along Curry’s Creek.  She grew up living and working on the farm.  It was self-sufficient with cows for milk, chicken for eggs, pigs and cattle for meat, a vegetable garden, and most likely fruit trees.

It took several hours by horse and buggy to travel to New Braunfels for supplies.   New Braunfels was the fourth largest city in the state when Bertha was born.  The Bauer farm became part of Blanco County In 1858, and in 1862, it became part of Kendall County. Her brothers and sisters, Otto, Louise, Ernst, and Emma, were all born in Kendall County.

Comal County 1857

Bertha married Eduard Georg on 3 September 1879 in Comal County.  Eduard parent’s Philipp Carl “Charles” Georg and Sophie Georg traveled on the same ship as her father.   According to the ship manifest, they came from the same town, Enkirch in Prussia.  Bertha and Eduard probably knew each other as children growing up.  When Bertha and Eduard married, they moved to Bexar County and lived in Precinct 2.  They had been married nine months when the 1880 census was taken. Eduard was 26, and Bertha was 23. Eduard is farming, and she is keeping house. 

In 1882, Edward George applied to receive a pre-emption land patent for 160 acres in Bexar County, stating he “settled upon vacant public domain” land in accordance with the Homestead Donation Act approved by the State of Texas in 1870.  In 1894, two citizens, B. D. Shield and J. P. Payton, stated in a swore Proof of Occupancy affidavit that Edward George lived on this land.

Edward George signature on Land Patent, 1882

In 1888, their property was valued at $420.00. Edward owned two mules valued at $25.00 and 15 head of cattle valued at $90.00. He paid a total of $4.90 for state and local taxes, plus he paid .38 for a railroad subsidy. Six years later, their property was valued at $480.00. Edward owned two wagons valued at $40.00, tools and machinery, valued at $20.00, one mule valued at $90.00, and five head of cattle valued at $25.00. He paid $6.24 in state and county taxes plus .41 for a railroad subsidy. Included in his state and county taxes, he paid $1.50 for state poll tax and .25 for county poll tax.

Edward and Bertha had four children, two boys and two girls.  Amanda (Robert Reynolds Goins, Albert Padier) was born 27 February 1882, Hugo (Olivia McGraw), 13 May 1885, Lillie Mary (George McGraw), January 1891, and Oscar, 10 July 1896.

In 1900, the family lived in Precinct 6 in Bexar County on Rockport Road near Pleasanton Road.  They owned their farm, and it was free of mortgage. Everyone could read and write except for Lillie and Oscar.   In 1910, Mary Georg was recorded as living with George and Lillie McGraw. She is listed as the mother-in-law to the head of household and her marital status is widowed.  Her son Oscar, age 14, is also living with them.

In 1919, Bertha agreed to lease their 160 acres for five years to Fred Maule. The lease stated it was “for the sole and only purpose of mining and operating for oil and gas, and of laying pipe lines, and of building tanks, powers, stations and structure thereon to produce, save and take care of said products…” She was paid $85.00 for the five year lease. Her husband, Edward, was with her when she signed the document so I am unsure why she is listed as a widow in 1900.

Signature on Oil and Gas Lease, 1919

She was not living with the McGraw family in 1920.  They are living in Atascosa County.  In 1930, Bertha and her son Oscar live next door to her oldest son Hugo and family on Campbelton Road in Precinct 6.  She owns her home valued at $1600.00.  In 1940, the census stated she lives on 66 Hi-way next door to her daughter, Amanda Padier, and husband Albert and family.  Her son Oscar lives with her.

Her husband Edward died on 12 March 1926, and Bertha died on 16 February 1947.  They are both buried in George Family Cemetery in Bexar County.

George Family Cemetery, Bexar County, Texas

When Bertha died in 1947, her son Hugo was the executor of her will.  Bertha authorized and empowered her executor to sell and distribute all her real property.  Oscar, her son, purchased the property for $1.00.

Bexar County Deeds, V. 2675, p167

Although, their address changed on each census, Bertha did not move. As San Antonio grew, the addresses and roads changed, but Bertha continued to live on the land her husband acquired for them.

Note: Georg was originally spelled without an e.  The spelling was “Americanized” in the 1880s by adding an e at the end. The spelling of Eduard changed to Edward. This happened to many German names.

Bertha is my Grandma Lillie Adam’s aunt.

Do you have a story to tell about Bertha? Please share it in the comments. I would love to hear a story about her.

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Bertha Bauer George, DC, Ancestry.com.

Bertha George Estate, Bexar County Deed Records, Vol. 2675, p167.

Comal County, Texas, 1857,” House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College, http://hd.housedivided.dickinson.edu/node/29037.

Edward George, #1079, Land Patent, Texas General Land Office.

1880, 1900, 1910, 1930, 1940 Bexar County Census Records, Ancestry.com.

Oil and Gas Lease, Bexar County Deed Records, Vol. 565, p178.

Philipp Bauer, 1860 Non Population Census, Ancestry.com.

Texas County Tax Rolls, 1837-1910, FamilySearch.com.

Absolutely, but when it is a census taker, it is much harder to forgive, especially when searching for a person who was born 164 years ago.  Here is an example of what I mean.

On the tombstone and the death certificate, the year of birth is 1857.  Ok, that works! Let us look at the census records as another source to confirm the date.

In 1860, the census destroyed

In 1870, 10 

In 1880, 23  (married nine months before census)

In 1890, the census destroyed

In 1900, 40

In 1910, 48

In 1920, still looking for this one

In 1930, 80, said married at age 16

In 1940, 93 or 83 (looks more like 83)

In 1947, on the death certificate, 89

So what year was she born?  There is no birth certificate.  Birth dates were not as important in the 19th century as they are today.

So,  how was the census taken?  The census taker would go house by house and ask questions from the census about who lived there.  Depending on who the census taker talked to depended on the answers they received.  Sometimes they asked the father working in the fields, whoever answered the door,  or a neighbor because no one was home, and they did not want to return the next day.  The census taker did not record who gave the information.  That is not all. The census taker had to handwrite three copies of the census going line by line and guess what happens when a person must copy something three times. Mistakes, Mistakes, Mistakes.  We all make them.

When my son was in college, he received an F in Algebra.  He was stunned.  When he contacted the professor, she was also stunned.  Then she remembered the fire alarm had gone off while she was recording grades. She had to leave immediately.  While hurrying to leave, her ruler slipped out of alignment in her grade book and my son received the grade below his name.  I never did find out how many grades she had to correct.  So, mistakes happen, but I wish I had somebody to call. 

Then there are name misspellings and poor handwriting, but that is another story.  I am trying hard to forgive all the mistakes made in recording the census.  So, 1857 sounds like an excellent year!

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Pope, Alexander. An Essay on Criticism, Part II, 1711. 

1900 Kendall County Census

I have attended RootsTech for the past five years.  Due to COVID-19, this year it is virtual.  The sessions are engaging, helpful, and shorter than an in-person session.  What I miss is the overall enthusiasm, and there is always lots of it!

One of the features at the RootsTech Conference is connecting with relatives who are registered to attend.  I have never had a close cousin connection. My list usually starts with 5th cousins.  This year I have three third cousins once removed!!  Two are from my father’s side, Adam and Bauer, and one from my mother’s side, Goehring.  So exciting!

The definition of a third cousin once removed is:

Third cousins share great-great grandparents. A child of my third cousin is my third cousin once removed and I am their third cousin once removed.

Here is an example from my family.

Susie and Kathryn are descended from the same great-great grandparents, Philipp and Marie Peters Bauer.

You can use this same format to discover your third cousins once removed.

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Signature in April 1873

As a person who has their first name misspelled a lot, I should have checked this sooner. I have seen his first name spelled Phillipp, Philipp, Philip, and Phillip. I usually spell it Phillip, because that is what I am used to seeing in America. Today I decided to locate his signature to see how he spelled his first name. Ugh, I have been misspelling it.

Harriett and Elfrieda Bauer

By the look on her face I do not think Elfrieda wanted her picture taken. I think all parents, at one time or another, experienced the “I don’t want my picture taken.” Poor Frieda, her shoes are probably pinching her feet.

Harriett and Elfrieda are the daughters of Ernst and Rosa Bender Bauer and the grandchildren of Philipp and Marie Peters Bauer.

They are my grandma Lillie Adam’s first cousins.

Christopher Humboldt’s tombstone in Boerne Cemetery

Christopher Charles Humboldt

born 14 December 1817 in ? ,Germany

died 26 February 1881 in Boerne, Tex

Christopher Humboldt arrived in Texas about 1854. On the 1867 Voter’s Registration of Kendall County he stated he had been living in Texas for thirteen years and five years in Kendall County. He was naturalized in Kerr County on 27 July 1858. In the Kerr County Commissioners Court Minutes on 11 July 1861 “Christoph Humboldt demanded rent due him from the county for a building rented for use as the courthouse, for seven months from December 1, 1860, to July 1, 1861, at $3.50 per month, or a total of $24.50.” After they paid him, the minutes state, “Christoph Humboldt offers his house again to the court at the same rate of rent and it is ordered by the court that the house is and shall be hereby rented for the next six months.”

He was married to Magdalena. They had two daughters Anne and Amelia and one son Christopher who died in 1869 and is buried in the Boerne Cemetery.

Christopher Humboldt was one of thirty-three inhabitants to purchase burial plots in the Boerne Cemetery in 1867.

Boerne Cemetery (Boerne, Kendall County, Texas). Christopher Humboldt. marker; personally read November 2020.

Watkins, Clara. Kerr County, Texas 1856 – 1976. Hill Country Preservation Society, Inc. Bicentennial Edition, 1975.

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Bertha (Georg), Louise (Wessely), Ernst Bauer, and Emma (Schuetz)

On the 1870 Kendall County Census Philip Bauer age 51 is listed with wife Marie, age 43, and children Bertha age 10, Otto age 8, Louise age 6, Ernst age 4 and Emma age 2. I can not find the family is 1860 and 1850 is too early. I believe Philip did not arrive in Texas until 1851. So, this is the census I have used for their children. I recognize everyone but Otto. Who is Otto? I have searched for him.

1870 Kendall County Census for Philip Bauer

In the 1880 Kendall County Census Phillip Bauer age 61, Mary, his wife, age 53, children listed are Louise age 17, Ernst age 14 and Emma age 12. Two children are missing Bertha and Otto. Bertha married Eduard Georg in Comal County on 3 September 1879.

1880 Kendall County Census for Philip Bauer

On the 1900 Kendall County Census, Phillip and Marie Bauer live with Carl and Louise Wessely, their daughter and son-in-law and family. Each time a census is taken, different questions are asked. In 1900, one of the questions is how many children did you have and how many are still alive. If you look in the red box on the line where Marie is listed, you will discover she had seven children, and four are alive in 1900. So, now we know what happened to Otto. He died between 1870 and 1880. Since there are no death records in Texas during those years I have no idea of his actual death date or where he is buried.

1900 Kendall County Census for Phillip Bauer

Bertha born 26 December 1857

Otto born about 1862

Louise born 20 July 1863

Ernst born 20 October 1864

Emma born 27 February 1868

Thank you to Susie McGraw for the photograph of Bertha Bauer Georg.

Elfrieda ” Alpha”, Arnold, Harriett “Hattie” Bauer

Ernst Bauer and Rosa Bender Bauer had three children, and all were born in Kendall County, Texas and are the grandchildren of Philipp and Marie Peters Bauer.

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

Harriett “Hattie” Bauer was born on 11 January 1898.  Eight days before her father died, she marries Richard Gore 9 September 1920 in Kendall County.  A year later, their daughter Constance Lourene was born on 15 August. Times must have been turbulent after her father’s death.  Hattie and Richard divorce, and she married R. L. Schrader on 17 October 1925 in Comal County, Texas.  They divorced, and Hattie and Constance move in with her sister, Elfrieda “Alpha,” at 316 Regina Street in San Antonio.   After she meets  Fritz Klaeden and they marry on 1 May 1930 in Bexar County, her life settles down. 

Fritz was a U. S. Army soldier and was station at Camp Norymale* in Bexar County.   Fritz was born in Luebben, Germany, on 10 September 1906.  In 1925 he sailed to New York on the Ship S.S. Arabic. He stated on his naturalization papers, “I enlisted in the U. S. Army in 1927 and have served continuously since that date.  The several periods of my army service were all terminated honorably with character rating “Excellent.  I am now serving in the Army under Honorable conditions.”  Fritz became a United States citizen on 10 January 1939 in Bexar County. 

Hattie’s daughter Constance was about nine years old when her mother married Fritz Klaeden.  In 1941, Constance married Charles Vinton Slaven in  San Antonio.  Her wedding announcement stated she was a graduate of South San Antonio High School, and the groom from Virginia was employed at Duncan Field.**  Slaven was a widower with one son Charles Slaven, Jr.  Aiter Thornton served as best man and Miss Louise Haire as maid of honor.   The couple had a son and a daughter.  Their daughter Sharon, born in 1944, died when she was a high school student in 1962.  Constance then married Harry Elmo Sutherland.  He  died at age 49 in December 1969.   Harry was an employee of Howell Refining Company.   In 1970 Constance married James Estel Wicke.  They lived at 2250 W. Southcross.  James died in 1982.   After his death, Constance married Vernon Groover.  They divorced in April 1998 in Clark County, Nevada.  She died six months later and is buried in San Fernando Cemetery #3.

Fritz and Hattie had one daughter together.  Jean was born on 23 December 1930 and was called Betty.  At the time of her birth, Hattie was living at 316 Regina.  She was a housewife and Fritz was serving in the U. S. Army.   They eventually moved to another house in the Harlandale School District where Betty graduated from Harlandale High School.  After graduation she attend Draughon’s Business College.   She married Arthur “Red” Weidman,  a soldier she met at the Lackland NCO Club, on 21 November 1953.   He asked her to dance, and the rest is history.  They danced throughout their 63-year marriage.  They entered dance contests and once won a Caribbean cruise.   In the KLRN special San Antonio: The Good Times, they reminisce about their dance club days.  Her obituary states, “Jean danced up until the last few days of her life-even performing her high-kick, which always elicited applause.”  The couple had two children.

Arnold Maney Bauer was born on 14 January 1901.  His World War II Registration Card described him as 6’ feet tall, gray eyes, brown hair, and a ruddy complexion.  In 1930 he was a laborer on the family farm and his mother, Rosa, was the farm manager.  In 1940 Arnold is married,  a carpenter, and living on Lovett Street in rural Bexar County.  He married Hilda Zuercher from Comal County.  The couple had two sons.   Arnold and Hilda eventually moved to New Braunfels where he died in October 1984.  He was a member of the Carpenters Local Union #14 and Texas Farm Bureau.  His survivors were his wife Hilda, one son from Houston, one son from San Antonio, three grandchildren, and two nieces.   Hilda died four years later.  The couple is buried in the Guadalupe Valley Memorial Park in Comal County.

San Antonio Light, 27 August 1933

*The Handbook of Texas gives a description of Camp Normoyle. “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.

**“Duncan Field, in San Antonio, came into being at the end of World War I as a division of Kelly Field. It was named for Maj. Thomas Duncan, who was killed in an air crash in Washington, D.C., in 1923. Duncan Field was used as an aircraft-repair depot and was joined to Kelly Army Air Field in 1942.”

Bauer, Arnold M., Obituary, San Antonio Light, 14 October 1874, Genealogybank.com.

Bauer, Mrs. Hilda. Obituary. 31 January 1988.  Genealogybank.com.

Bexar County Marriage Records,  https://bexar.tx.publicsearch.us/

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

Gore Slaven Marriage. San Antonio Light, 14 July 1941.

Johnston, Leah Carter, San Antonio: St. Anthony’s Town (San Antonio: Librarians Council, 1947). Green Peyton [Wertenbacker], San Antonio (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1946).  Published by the Texas State Historical Association.  TSHA | Home (tshaonline.org).

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

Klaeden, Mr. Fritz. Obituary. San Antonio Light.  11 November 1983. Genealogybank.com.

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).

Texas Birth Certificates. Ancestry.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.

U. S. World War II Draft Registration Card, Ancestry.com.

Weidman, Jean Klaeden. Obituary. Legacy.com.

Bexar County Marriage Records, Vol. D-1, p58

1370. The State of Texas } To any person authorized by law,

County of Bexar } to celebrate the Rites of matrimony

Be it known, that I the undersigned, Clerk of

the County Court of said County, by virtue of the

power in me vested by Law, Do hereby License

any person legally authorized to join in the

Bonds of matrimony, Conrad Adam and Miss

Adalberthe Bergmann both of said County and

both of lawful age.  And of this license, and

proceedings had thereon, make due return to the

Clerks office of said County according to law, within

the next sixty days.  Witness my hand and the seal

of the County Court of said (office) County at office in

San Antonio this fifteenth day of February AD 1856

Seal } Sam S. Smith, Clerk County Court, Bexar County

The State of Texas, I Albert Moye, J.P. B. Co.

Do hereby certify, That I have this sixteenth day

of February A. D. 1856 by virtue of the marriage

License herewith attached joined in the bonds of Matrimony

Adalberthe Bergmann & Conrad Adam, in prescace [sic] of H. G.

Froebel and Anton Beyer. A Moye, J. P. C. 3rd Pre.

Filed Feby 18, 1956. Sam S. Smith, Clk, CC B. Co.

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