The Merkles from Chattanooga

I appreciate when readers send me information about their family, especially when the family has a Chattanooga, Ohio, connection. Thanks to Doug Roebuck for sharing information and photos about his Merkle and Kantner family lines, which definitely have a Chattanooga connection. Perhaps this Merkle information connects with your family somewhere.

Merkle was sometimes spelled Merkley in some mid-1800 documents and Merkle family members also confirm that. The name was spelled Merkley on the 1860 marriage record of Joseph Merkle (1835-1901) to Lucinda Kantner (1843-1919), as Merkley when their daughter Anna Merkle (1867-1935) married Fred Heffner (1861-1918) in 1885, and when another daughter Emma Merkle married Conrad Heffner in 1897. There may be even more instances.

Doug said that the Merkle’s liked to play baseball, which was a very popular sport in Chatt years ago.

Joseph Merkle (1835-1901) was born in Germany and married Lucinda Kantner in Auglaize County, Ohio, on 29 January 1860. Lucinda Kantner (1843-1919) was born in Ohio and grew up in Auglaize County. She was the daughter of Elias and Elizabeth (Oswald) Kantner. Joseph and Lucinda Merkle lived in Auglaize County until about 1872, when they moved to Chattanooga, Ohio. Joseph was a blacksmith in Chatt and Lucinda ran a boarding house. Their family attended Zion Lutheran Church in Chatt.

This 1900 map of Chattanooga shows Lot 9, Lucinda Merkle and a hotel to the north:

Chattanooga, Ohio, 1900, Lucinda Merkle & Hotel, Lot 9

According to the 1900 census Joseph and Lucinda had 10 children, but only nine have been identified: Mary, Elizabeth, Anna, John Francis, Friedrich, Emma, William, Joseph “Edward”, and Leo.

How wonderful to have a photo of the Joseph & Lucinda Merkle family:

Joseph & Lucinda (Kantner) Merkle family. (photo courtesy of Doug Roebuck) 

Joseph and Lucinda both died in Liberty Township, Mercer County, and are buried in Zion Chatt’s cemetery.

A little about the children of Joseph and Lucinda (Kantner) Merkle:

  • “Mary” Magdalena (Merkle) FEGGER (1861-1954), born in Auglaize County, married Rev. Albert J. Feeger (1858-1941) in Chattanooga, Ohio, on 6 July 1882. Rev. Feeger was a Lutheran minister. They had two girls and seven boys: Luther Martin, Mabel Ida, Carl Herbert, Helen Emilie, Albert Julius, Paul George Henry, Theodore Franz, George Edward, and another who is not identified. Rev. Feeger and Mary died in the Dayon area and are buried in Dayton Memorial Park Cemetery.
  • Elizabeth H. “Lizzie” (Merkle) HEFFNER (1865-1924), born in Auglaize County, married “Jacob” Joseph Heffner (1861-1899) at Zion Chatt on 16 December 1884. Jacob was the son of Conrad and Anna (Miller) Heffner. Jacob and Elizabeth Heffner had three children: Carl, Leo C., and Ralph. Jacob and Elizabeth are buried in Zion Chatt’s cemetery.
  • Anna (Merkle) HEFFNER (1867-1935), born in Auglaize County, married Fred Heffner (1861-1918) on 1 October 1885 at Zion Chatt. Fred was the son of George and Sophia (Martin) Heffner/Haeffner. Fred resided in Chatt most of his life and ran a saloon there for several years. They had nine children: George “Rudolph,” Albert Conrad, Emma Elizabeth (marr. Bauer), Walter Herbert, Fredrich Oscar ”Brownie”, Maria Helena, Roman Edward, Verla Marguerite (marr. Roebuck), and Vernon Hugo “Cy.” Fred and Anna Heffner are buried in Zion Chatt’s cemetery. 

Vernon “Cy,” Fred, Margaret, Anna (Merkle) Heffner, c1913, in Chattanooga. (photo courtesy of Doug Roebuck)

  • John Francis MERKLE (1870-1895), born in Auglaize County, was a carpenter and contractor in South Chicago. He drown in the Calumet River there, when his rowboat capsized. He is buried in Zion Chatt’s cemetery. He was not married.
  • Frederick “Fred” Arthur MERKLE (1872-1947), probably born in Auglaize County, married Freda Slater (1877-1938) in Chicago on 30 November 1911. Fred moved to Chicago when he was 16 and worked for Cudahy [?] Packing Company, installing refrigerators in meat packing companies. Fred and Freda had three daughters, Irma (marr. Strutter); Bernice (marr. DuSan) and Myrtle (marr Masterton; marr. Hughes). Fred and Freda are buried in Evergreen Cemetery, Evergreen Park, Cook County, Illinois.
  • Emma (Merkle) HEFFNER (1874-1950), probably born Chattanooga, married Conrad Heffner (1867-1951) on 27 October 1897 at Zion Chatt. Conrad was the son of George and Sophia (Martin) Heffner. Conrad and Emma had two children, Walter Heffner and Bernice Heffner (marr. Victor Stucke). Conrad and Emma are buried in Zion Chatt’s cemetery.
  • William MERKLE (1877-1959), born in Chattanooga, married Bertha May Short (1884-1968) on 27 September 1903 in Shelby County, Ohio. William was a blacksmith. They had one child, Opal Merkle (marr. Dwight Franz). William and Bertha are buried in Forest Hill Cemetery, Piqua, Ohio. 
  • Joseph Edward “Ed” MERKLE (1882-1952), born in Chattanooga, married Nellie Dull (1882-1948) in Auglaize County on 28 January 1906. Nellie was the daughter of Elliott and Nettie Dull. Ed was a street commissioner in Celina and was a Deputy State Fire Marshal. They had a daughter, Pauline M. (marr. Stanley Bartholomew). Ed and Nellie Merkle are buried in Elm Grove Cemetery, St. Marys, Auglaize County, Ohio.
  • Leo “Lee” MERKLE (1888-1956), born in Chattanooga, married Clara Baker (1890-1955) on 30 June 1912 in Mercer County. Clara was the daughter of Henry and Mary Anna (Manche) Baker. Lee Merkle and Sam Egger ran a huckster wagon in the Chattanooga area and Lee later owned a produce company in Toledo, Ohio. They had one daughter, Mary Helen (marr. Bill Avery). Lee and Clara Merkle are buried in Toledo Memorial Park Cemetery, Toledo, Lucas County, Ohio.

Merkle & Egger, Chattanooga, Ohio. (photo courtesy of Doug Roebuck)

The photo below was taken between April & November 1919. Joseph Merkle was deceased but his widow, Lucinda (Kantner) Merkle, is in the center of the photo. She died later that year.

Joseph & Lucinda (Kantner) Merkle family, 1919. (photo courtesy of Doug Roebuck)

Front Row (L-R):  Edgar Monroe, Bernice (Heffner) Stuckey holding Mary Helen Merkle, Pauline (Merkle) Bartholomew, Luther Heffner, Vernon “Cy” Heffner, Fern (Bauer) Moore, Ruth Heffner, Mary Elizabeth Kauper, Gwendolyn (Bauer) Row and Mildred (Bauer) Fisher.

2nd Row (L-R):  Leo Merkle, Ed Merkle, Mary (Merkle) Feeger, Elizabeth (Merkle) Heffner,, Lucinda (Kantner) Merkle, Anna (Merkle) Heffner, Emma (Merkle) Heffner and Aunt Moll.

3rd Row (L-R):  Clara (Baker) Merkle, Nellie (Dull) Markle, one of Aunt Lizzie (Merkle) Heffner’s boys, Helen (Fegger) Kauper, Nellie (Dayo) Heffner hold Lois (Heffner) Koch, __?__, Mabel (Fegger) Kauper, Emma (Heffner) Bauer, Mary Monroe and __?__.

Back Row (L-R):  Rev. Albert Fegger ?, Albert C. Heffner, Oscar” Brownie” Heffner, _____Fegger, ____ Fegger, Jacob Bauer, Rudolph “Rude” C. Heffner, George Kauper, Conrad Heffner and Norris Monroe.

Thank you Doug for sharing these photos. I will post some more photos from this family in the future.

I have written several blog posts about this family, including Tombstone Tuesday-Joseph & Lucinda (Kantner) Merkle. Other posts about the Merkles can be found by using the search feature on Karen’s Chatt Home Page.


    • Martha Lawler on March 27, 2024 at 6:17 pm
    • Reply

    Thanks, for posting this information. Mildred Bauer Fisher was my mother and I recognize a lot of these people. I appreciate you and all the work you put into all these listings.

    1. Thank you. It is always fun to see photos of family and friends and they bring back many memories. I will post some more from this collection soon. Thank you for writing!

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