March 6, 2013

William H. Pflaumer, son of Jacob & Katherina Hoffman Pflaumer

Jacob Pflaumer and his second wife, Katherina Hoffman had three children together.  George Edward, "Ed," was my husband's grandfather. 
William H. was the oldest brother, born on September 26, 1869, according to his funeral records.  An actual birth record has not been found.  He grew up on the home farm with his parents until leaving to marry. 

Believed to be the wedding photo of Wm. and Grace

On March 28, 1803, he married Grace Bowser when he was 23 and she was 17 or 18. By the 1900 census, the couple lived in Fort Wayne, Indiana with their two little daughters, Edith, born in September 1896, and Ardyse, born in February 1898.  William was working as a hostler, one who moved locomotives in and out of the roundhouse and possibly serviced them.
Grace kept house, and they had a boarder living with them, Ida Maxwell, 18, a domestic.

By 1910, William had begun what would be a long career as a firefighter for the city of Fort Wayne.  He worked at the #2 station on Wallace Street from 1910-1915 and then later on, too.
Sometime before 1910, Grace lost a third child in infancy.

Labeled by their niece, Violette - she always called Ardyse as Artist.

Ardyse married on Christmas Eve 1915, to Herbert Strasburg, and a few years later, Edith married Fred H. Weseloh on January 18, 1917.  So by the 1920 census, Grace, 43, and William, 48, were left alone. They purchased their own home at 427 Wallace Street in Fort Wayne, and William continued to be promoted in the fire department.

William served 30 years in the city fire department.  This article (undated) appeared in the Fort Wayne paper to announce his retirement in about 1940:
Allison Kiles Fills Vacancy at No. 2
William H. Pflaumer, 427 East Wallace street, captain of No. 2 fire station for the last four years, retired from the department yesterday at the completion of 30 years of service.  His successor, appointed recently by the board of public affairs,is Allison Kiles, 3912 Holton avenue.
Captain Pflaumer began his service in the department at the same station where he retired, February 1, 1910.  In 1927, he was named a lieutenant and was transferred to No. 3 fire station and a year later was elevated to the captaincy of No. 6 fire station.  Four years ago he was returned to the No. 2 station, and was in command there four years prior to his retirement.
As a member of the department, Pflaumer served during some of the city's greatest conflagrations, beginning with destruction of the old Princess rink at Main and Fulton streets in 1914 and the Fort Wayne Builders' Supply company fire in the eastern part of the city a year and a half ago."

 William, like his siblings, had only a fourth grade education, but he did well for himself.  He and Grace had only 4 or 5 years together after his retirement before her death on November 22, 1945.
Funeral services for Mrs. Grace G. Pflaumer, 69, 427 East Wallace Street, who died at 3:30 a.m. Thursday at the Methodist Hospital, will be held at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at the Chalfant-Perry Funeral Home where friends may call after 10 a.m. today.  Dr. Benjamin F. Smith will officiate.  Burial will be in Lindenwood Cemetery.
The wife of William H. Pflaumer, a retired captain of the Fort Wayne Fire Department, Mrs. Pflaumer had been a patient in the hospital for a month.  She was a member of the Calvary United Brethern Church and the Fort Wayne Auxillary to the Indiana Firemen's Association.  Mr. and Mrs. Pflaumer celebrated their golden wedding anniversary in 1943.
Surviving besides Mr. Pflaumer are two daughters, Mrs. Fred H. Weseloh and Mrs. H. W. Strasburg of Fort Wayne; five brothers, Ernest, William and Maynard Bowser, all of this city, Nelson Bowser of Pomona, Calif., and Raymond Bowser of Artean, Calif.; a granddaughter and a great-granddaughter."

William lived on for twelve more years until February 24, 1957.

What happened to Edith and Ardyse?
Edith Pflaumer Weseloh
"Mrs. Edith Weseloh
Services for Mrs. Edith G. Weseloh, 73, of 2302 S. Calhoun St. will be at 10:30 a.m. in Tom Mungovan Funeral Home, the Rev. Loren J. Shiley officiating. Burial will be in Concordia Cemetery.
Mrs. Weseloh, along with her husband, Fred H. Weseloh, operated Weseloh's Pharmacy at Creighton Avenue and Calhoun Street 46 years.  A member of Zion Lutheran Church, she died at 7:30 a.m. yesterday in Lutheran Hospital after a week-long illness.
Also surviving are a daughter, Mrs. Lester Wiegman, and a grandson, David Wiegman, both of Fort Wayne.
Friends may call at the funeral home after 7 p.m. today.  Preferred memorials are gifts to the Sacrifice Fund of Zion Lutheran Church.
(December 1968)

"Mrs. Ardyse L. Strasburg
Services for Mrs. Ardyse L. Strasburg, 67, 4640 Spatz Ave., will be Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. at Chalfant-Perry-Klaehn Funeral Home, the Rev. Walter M. Schoedel officiating.
Mrs. Strasburg died Monday at 2 p.m. in Lutheran Hospital where had been a patient one week. A native of Fort Wayne, she was a member of Emmanuel Lutheran Church.
Surviving are a sister, Mrs. Edith Weseloh, Fort Wayne; and a niece, Mrs. Bessie Wiegman, Fort Wayne.  Her husband, Herbert, died in November 1964.  Burial will be in Lindenwood Cemetery.  Friends may call at the funeral home today after 4 p.m."
(March 1965)
Ardyse's husband, Herbert, was a field auditor for the Department of State Revenue.  They had no children.  Edith had one child, Bessie.

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