Tombstone Tuesday–Luther C. Bollenbacher

Luther C. Bollenbacher, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Luther Carl Bollenbacher, located in row 9 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Luther Carl “Bun” Bollenbacher was born in Chattanooga, Ohio, on 31 December 1915, the son of Fred and Anna (Huffman) Bollenbacher.

In about 1916 Fred and Anna Bollenbacher and their 5 children lived on a 40 acre farm south of Chatt in about 1916. The land was located a little south of Frahm Pike and east of State Route 49. Fred was a farmer and a thresher who owned 2 horses and 3 cows and had an Indiana telephone, according to The Farm Journal Illustrated Directory of Mercer County, Ohio, 1916, 1921.

The Fred Bollenbacher household in 1920: Fred J, 45; Anna, 39; Mabel, 18; Ernest, 13; Albert, 8; Opal, 10; and Luther, 4. Fred was a farmer. [1] 

Luther was confirmed by Rev. Albrecht at Zion Chatt on 24 March 1929. Zion’s confirmation records indicate that he was baptized at St. Paul but they do not specify whether it was St. Paul Lutheran or St. Paul UCC.

Below is the 1929 Confirmation Class at Zion Chatt. Luther is the boy in the back row on the far right side. The others in the class: 1) Morris Huffman, Bernice Becher, Rev. J.A. Albrecht, Pauline McGough, Waldo Brandt.  2) John Albrecht, Herb Brandt, Vernon Caffee, Elihu Davison, Werner Becher.  3) Reginald Fisher, Paul McGough, Charles Strabel, Luther Bollenbacher.

1929 Zion Chatt Confirmation Class with Rev. Jacob Albrecht.

Luther’s father Fred died in 1938.

In 1940 Luther, age 24 and single, lived with his 61 year-old widowed mother in the same house they had rented and lived in 5 years before. The census indicates that the house was not connected to a farm. Luther was a general laborer, doing all sorts of odd jobs. He had completed elementary school through the 8th grade. [2]

Luther worked as a mechanic at Johnson’s Garage and never married.

Luther died at Mercer County Hospital in Coldwater, Ohio, on 31 August 1983, at the age of 67. He was buried on 2 September and Dick and Sons Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Luther Bollenbacher had the following siblings:
Mabel E (1900-1989), married Lester Kaylor
Clarence R (1902-1904)
Ernest W (1906-1971), married Mabel Howell
Opal Marie (1909-1998), married Blaine Laffin
Albert Frederick (1911-1974), married Lillian Deitsch

Luther’s mother, Anna (Huffman) Bollenbacher, died in 1986 at the age of. 107. Fred and Anna are also buried in row 9 of Zion’s cemetery, not far from their son Luther.


[1] 1920 U.S. Census, Liberty, Mercer, Ohio, ED 140, p.9B, dwelling 177, family 191, Fred J. Bollenbacher;; NARA microfilm T625, roll 1418.

[2] 1940 U.S. Census, Liberty, Mercer, Ohio, ED 54-22, p.8A, line 1, Anna Bollenbacher;; NARA microfilm T627, roll 3114.

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