Tombstone Tuesday-Carl P. Bollenbacher

Carl P Bollenbacher, St Paul’s County Church Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2023 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Carl P. Bollenbacher, located in row 3 of St. Paul’s County Church Cemetery, formerly known as St. Paul’s UCC Cemetery, Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Died May 8, 1906
Age 15y, 3m, 2d

The thunderstorm that went through here early last Sunday morning reminded me of the following incident that I ran across, which occurred 117 years ago, almost to the day.

Young Son of J.J. Bollenbacher of near Chattanooga, Ohio

Last Tuesday at about one o’clock Charles Bollenbacher, the fifteen-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. J.J. Bollenbacher, of Liberty township, was struck by lightening and instantly killed while plowing his father’s field. The team of horses the young man was driving were also killed by the deadly bolt. Another brother and a team of horses were near by as was also his father, who was burning out a stump, but they all escaped unhurt, being only stunned by the flash that killed the young lad and his team.

Charles was just making his second round of plowing after dinner when the deadly flash came that snuffed out the life of the lad and the horses.

Charles was an exemplary young man and had just attained an age when he was a great help to his father. He was an enthusiastic worker and gave great promise of becoming an intelligent and successful farmer. His death was a terrible shock to his family and the profoundest sympathy of all is extended to them in their sorrowful affliction.

Funeral services were held at the German Evangelical church in Liberty township Thursday afternoon. An immense concourse of people assembled to pay a last tribute of respect to the memory of a young man who was greatly respected and admired by all who knew him. It was one of the largest funerals ever held in that township. A number of persons from this city were in attendance. [1]

Carl P. Bollenbacher, aka Charles Bollenbacher, was born 6 February 1891, the son of John Jacob (1863-1942) and Eva Barbara (Strable) (1866-1943) Bollenbacher.

Carl Bollenbacher was enumerated with his family in just one census, the 1900 census. The Jacob J. Bollenbacher family in 1900: Jacob J, 36; Effie B, 33, wife; Lawrence A, 11; Carl P, 9; Alonzo B, 3; and Alma E, 6 months. All family members were born in Ohio and Jacob was a farmer. Jacob and Effie had been married 12 years. Effie had given birth to six children, four of whom were living. [2]

Carl P Bollenbacher, St Paul’s County Church Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2023 photo by Karen)

Carl had five siblings when he died and two other siblings were born after his death. Theodore/Ted was born later that same year and Laura Christina was born in 1911.

Charles Bollenbacher had thee following siblings:
Adam Lawrence Bollenbacher (1888-1934), married Margaret Jane McDonald
Matilda Bollenbacher (1893-1894)
Albert William Bollenbacher (1895-1898)
Alonzo Benjamin Bollenbacher (1897-1991), married Faye Teresa Now
Alma Elizabeth Bollenbacher (1899-2007), married Robert H Stephenson; married Orris Edgar Now
Pearl C Bollenbacher (1902-1982), married John Wood
Cora Bollenbacher (1904-1992), married Raymond Elmer Fetters
Theodore “Ted” Edgar Bollenbacher (1906-1992), married Esther Nutt
Laura Christina Bollenbacher (1911-1958), married Charles A Deerhake

[1] The Celina Advocate, Celina, Ohio, 17 May 1906.

[2] 1900 U.S. Census, Liberty, Mercer, Ohio, ED 85, p.16, dwelling 307, family 313, Jacob J Bollenbacher;, viewed 8 May 2023.

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