The Boßecker Newsletter

Volume 1 Issue 6 March 1996


Seated (Left to Right): Charles Westhyheidemann, child & Amanda (Enlow)(Bosecker) Westhyheidemann
Standing (Left to Right): Unknown, Will Bodishbaugh(?), Ada (Bosecker) Bodishbaugh(?),
Winfield Scott Bosecker(?) & Grover Bosecker.

This Month's Photo

In May of 1993 I received a package of Bosecker information which included the above photo from Phillip Lonergan [Born: 1948] of Chicago, IL.

The seated folks were identified as Charles [1860-1956] & Amanda (Enlow) (Bosecker) Westyheidemann [1854-1911]. Amanda's first husband was Johann Heinrich Bosecker [1852-1887], son of the immigrants Johannes & Louisa Boßecker. The infant is identified only as a child of Ada (Bosecker) Bodishbaugh. Standing, from left to right, they were identified as: "Unknown, Ada's husband, Ada, Wynn & Grover".

In addition to the individuals in this photograph, there are other items of interest... There are 4 pillows in the foreground plus one with a woman's image on it placed so as to face the camera. The standing individuals are spaced to allow 2 pictures hanging on the wall to be recorded by the camera. Behind Grover, near his feet, there is some sort of platter that appears to be positioned such that it would interfere with normal door operation.

I was delighted to get this photograph and I shared it with a few other family members to get their thoughts.

John Bodishbaugh [Born: 1938](Ada's grandson) had a photograph of Ada as a young lady. In John's picture Ada has fairly short, curly hair. The woman identified as Ada in this month's photograph appears to have long straight hair.

Edwin Bosecker [Born: 1926](Winfield's grandson) thought that the fellow identified as "Wynn" might be too tall to be his grandfather. Edwin recalled his grandfather as being a very short man.

In a letter I asked Phillip Lonergan if he knew who had identified the people in his picture. In his reply to my query, Phillip wrote that he believed that the identification had been made by his Aunt Wilma Berneice (Bosecker) Coumbs [Born: 1911]. Phillip speculated that his aunt had met only her father, Grover Bosecker; her Uncle Winfield S. Bosecker and her step-grandfather, Charles Westyheidemann.

To me, the picture suggests an event revolving around the child; perhaps a baptism. The standing woman is identified as the mother of the child and the fellow to her right is identified as her husband. Yet the gentleman to the woman's left appears to be somewhat more formally dressed (note the flower on his lapel) and he also has his hand on the woman's shoulder.

While giving due deference to the identities written on the photograph, I think there are sufficient grounds for further investigation. Do any of my readers have photographs or information that might prove/disprove the identities of any of these folks?

Johann Heinrich Bosecker [1852-1887]

Johann Heinrich Bosecker was born on 3 Sep 1852 in Adams County, IN. Henry, as he was later called, was the 7th child of the immigrants Johannes & Louisa (Thomin) Boßecker and the 4th child born in the United States.

In the 1870 census I find Johannes & Louisa Boßecker living in Adams County, IN but 17 year old Henry is not listed with his parents. He may be boarding with another family in the area and working as a farm laborer but I have not located him at this time.

On 10 May 1874 Daniel Bulkley married J. Henry Bosecker and J. Amanda Enlow in Edwards County, IL. Rev. Bulkley had preached at the Albion Church and West Village Church but what congregation he was affiliated with at the time of this marriage is unknown.In the 1880 Census, Henry, Amanda & 3 children are living in Edwards County, IN and Henry's occupation is listed as Bartender.

Henry & Amanda had the following children: Ada Louise (Bosecker) Bodishbaugh [1875-1934], George Washington Bosecker [1876-1930], Emma Pauline Bosecker [1878-1880], Karl Heinrich Franz Bosecker [1880-1907], Winfield Scott Bosecker [1882-1951] & Grover Edward Bosecker [1884-1949].

The following obituary noted Henry Bosecker's passing:

"Our citizens were shocked when the announcement was made that Henry Bosecker was dead. Only a week previous he was apparently in good health, attending to his usual business, when he was attacked with some trouble of the throat, which, with other complications that quickly followed baffled the skill of the physicians, and at about 9 o'clock last Sunday morning he breathed his last. His funeral, on Monday, was largely attended, the pall-bearers being H.A. Blair, J.H. Thompson, A. Bodishbaugh, A.G. Coles, David Negley and Wm. Baun.
He leaves a wife and five children, who in their sudden bereavement have the sympathy of the entire community. Mr. Bosecker had been in business in Grayville for almost twenty years, and was popular with all who knew him..."

In a Petition for Letters of Administration at the Edwards County, IL Courthouse Henry's widow, Amanda, notes an estate consisting of: "Household furniture, saloon fixtures and furniture, stock of liquors and the goods in saloon, one frame saloon building, one horse, two cows, an interest in restaurant stock... ...also house and lot in Grayville occupied as a homestead at time of his death..."

On 11 Apr 1887, the day after his death, Henry Bosecker was buried in the Oak Grove Cemetery in Grayville, IL.

Henry's widow, Amanda, married the widower, Charles Westyheidemann at Cowling, IL on 20 Nov 1896. Amanda died on 25 Nov 1911 in Evansville, IN from appendicitis and is also buried in the Oak Grove Cemetery. Charles Westyheidemann died in 1956.


In the last issue, on Page 1, I misspelled Shirley Miller's maiden name as Graesh when I believe it is Graesch. On Page 2 I wrote that Johannes Boßecker died on 24 Sep 1896 and his wife Louisa died on 19 Feb 1898. These were the burial dates; the actual death dates are in the captions under the pictures on Page 1.

This page was posted on 23 Feb 1997.

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