Saturday, April 5, 2014

52 Ancestors- #14 Amelia Dorothea (Liebe) Clark

Amelia Dorothea (Liebe) Clark

Amelia Liebe was my paternal great-grandmother. I never knew Amelia, as she died 16 years before I was born. This is her biography according to the story view produced at her page:

When AMELIA DOROTHEA LIEBE was born on March 29, 1861, in Mosel, Wisconsin, her father, CARL, was 29 and her mother, WENDELINA, was 24. She married WILLIAM DAVID CLARK on October 30, 1882, in her hometown. They had eight children in 19 years. She died on November 6, 1934, in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, at the age of 73.
These are the bare facts of her life, but who was the person?

Growing Up in Mosel

Amelia was the fourth of fourteen children born to German immigrant parents. According to 19th century German naming patterns, at baptism children were given two names. The first was a spiritual or saint's name in honor of a favorite saint. Therefore, several children in the same family could have the same, or similar, first name. The second or middle name was the name the person was know by withing the family.

According to her baptismal record, Amelia's given name was Emilie Dorothea, not to be confused with her sisters named Emilia Minna (who went by the name of Minnie) and Amalia Therese (who was known as Molly). 

The thirteen Liebe children grew up in the two-room cabin built by their father Carl soon after his arrival at Mosel in Sheboygan county. The upstairs loft was lined with the children's beds. There was always work to be done, in the house and on the farm. Since the first boy was not born until after the births of eight of his sisters, the girls must have had a hand in farm chores as well as in the house. The house was simple, but known for always being spotless and brightened by geraniums. There would have been a garden to tend and harvest, and meals to prepare, probably using old family recipes handed down for generations. The Liebe cabin was covered in grapevines and ivy, which no doubt served to keep it cool in the summer, but there was a separate summer kitchen, built of stone, where Wendeline and her daughters would cook in the hot days of summer.

The community of Mosel was made up of other first-generation German immigrants. In fact, in 1875 the population of the town was 1,100- all German with the exception of one Englishman and two Irishmen. The family attended the Evangelical Lutheran Church just down the road. Amelia was confirmed there in 1875.

Emilia Dorothea Liebe, daughter of Carl Liebe and Wendeline born Schaf, born 29 Mach 1861 (original in German)

 Marriage and a New Home

When Amelia was 21, on 30 October 1882, she married William David Clark. He was a 35-year-old farmer from Sheboygan Falls who was now farming in Door County:
William Clark (Father- Sanford Clark/Mother- Mary Dawppebpl), and
Emilie Dorothea Liebe (Father- Moritz Liebe/ Mother-Wendeline Schaef)
Farmer- Town of Claybanks, Door Co., WI (Residence)
BP- Sheboygan Falls, Sheboygan Co., WI
Ceremony- by rites at Evengelical Lutheran Church.
Wittnesses- Carl Moritz Liebe and F. Schick; Minister- Martin Deumminger (Mosel)

Cert. Oct 30, 1882; Reg. 4 Nov. 1882
Dave and Amelia Clark

The move from her home in Mosel to Clay Banks in Door County was 100 miles in distance, but there were no highways or automobiles to make the trip in today's hour and a half. There is a good chance that Amelia did not often get to see her parents after her marriage. Her oldest sister Thekla "Hulda" Braunsdorf, and brothers Gustave and Adolph also resettled in Door County. The reunion of her surviving seven siblings at the Liebe homestead in 1940 did not include her, as she had died six years earlier.

William "Dave" and Amelia had seven children, 4 sons and 3 daughters. Another daughter, Daisy, was born when Amelia was 42, and died soon after her birth.

Amelia was 14 years younger than her husband, and stories have been told of how she had to endure his bad temper. My Dad recalled one incident when she was bending over to tie his grandfather's shoes. She must have tied them too tightly, and he swore and kicked her.

Amelia (left) and Dave (right) with daughter Hannah (just behind Amelia)
and her children, and granddaughter Lucille (right of Amelia)

Amelia and Dave spent most of their married life at Clay Banks. They lived for a short time with my grandparents, son Sanford and Eva. The last few years were spent with their daughter Charlotte "Lottie" and Chan Schuyler in Sturgeon Bay. Amelia died 6 November 1934 of Myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle), due to Asthma. She was buried at the Clay Banks cemetery.

Amelia Clark


Death Certificate

Obituary from Door County Advocate

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