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Daniel Gaumer


Daniel Gaumer was born on March 25, 1814 or April 12, 1814 in Southampton Township, Somerset County, PA, the son of Johann "Richard" and Mary Ann Gaumer. He also has been named as "David" in census records.

As an adult, he remained in Southampton, where in about 1833 he married Elizabeth Korns (Feb. 12, 1815-1864), the daughter of Daniel and Elizabeth (Reiver) Korns of Southampton Township. The Gaumer and Korn families were close, and Daniel's brother Samuel wedded Elizabeth's sister Susanna.

Elizabeth's great-grandfather, Henry Korns, was a German immigrant who in 1725 sailed from Nuremberg to Philadelphia aboard the ship Two Brothers and purchased land in Berks County, PA. Elizabeth's grandparents, Michael and Susanna (Boucher/Baker) Korns, had migrated to Somerset County, PA, where they spent the rest of their lives.


Farm of Elizabeth Gaumer's parents, Daniel and Elizabeth (Reiver) Korns, Southampton Township, Somerset County. From Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr.


Daniel and Elizabeth bore a dozen children -- Rebecca Gary/Garey, George G. Gaumer, Hannah Gaumer, Elizabeth Gaumer, Delilah Gaumer, Solomon Gaumer, Edward Gaumer, Simon Gaumer, Julia Ann "Julian" Gaumer, Lavina Jordan, Minerva Ophelia Sage Stauffer Morse and James Gaumer.

They were farmers in Southampton Township as shown on the federal census enumerations of 1850 and 1860. Their farm comprised "about 100 acres clear with a house and barn thereon erected," stated a legal notice in the Somerset Herald and Whig, "adjoining lands of the Wellersburg Coal Company, Wm. Winters, M.A. Sanner, Francis Mattingly and others."

Tax lists published in the Somerset Herald circa 1846 show that Daniel served as tax collector in the township as well. He served as administrator of the estates of the late Henry Kennel and Samuel Witt, both in 1847.


The Gaumers' entry in the book the 1949 book The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. of Somerset County, Pennsylvania, authored by Charles Byron Korns



Book naming the Gaumers

Daniel passed away in Southampton on Jan. 10, 1864, at the age of 49. Some sources give his place of death as Bedford County. [Find-a-Grave]

Elizabeth only survived her husband by eight months. She joined him in eternity on Sept. 4, 1864. They rest in the Cook Cemetery in Wellersburg, but their graves are not marked.

After their deaths, the question of what was to become of their farm rested with the county court. Sheriff Josiah Shafer held an inquest on April 12, 1866 to ascertain its value. The Herald and Whig advertised the matter, and listed their surviving children, with the name "James Mawrer" -- connection unknown -- also named.

Their families are spelled out in the 1991 book The Reiber Genealogy: The Descendants of Jacob Reiber, the Immigrant Ancestor of Sandhofen, Germany, 1727-1810, and Later of Lehigh County and York County, Pennsylvania, authored by John Raymond and Edith Fae (Boyer) Reiber (625 pages). 

The couple is named in Clyde Everett Corn's 1957 book History of the Corn Families of the U.S.A. (206 pages) and also in the 1949 book The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. of Somerset County, Pennsylvania, authored by Charles Byron Korns (Berlin Publishing Company, 262 pages). Their families also are spelled out in the 1991 book The Reiber Genealogy: The Descendants of Jacob Reiber, the Immigrant Ancestor of Sandhofen, Germany, 1727-1810, and Later of Lehigh County and York County, Pennsylvania, authored by John Raymond and Edith Fae (Boyer) Reiber (625 pages).

All of their adult children eventually migrated to Iowa.


Cook Cemetery in Somerset County, PA, where the Gaumers'
daughters Elisabeth Ann (1858) and Delilah (1860) rest for all time.


~ Daughter Rebecca (Gaumer) Gary ~

Daughter Rebecca Gaumer (1836-1903) was born on June 17, 1836 (or 1837) in Southampton Township, Somerset County, PA.

When she was age 19 or 20, in 1856, Rebecca married William Henry Gary (March 20, 1832-1911), also spelled "Garey." He is said to have been an immigrant from Ireland.

They were the parents of nine offspring, of whom the following eight are known by name -- Dr. Isaiah "Clark" Gary, Daniel W. Gary, Catherine "Elizabeth" Ingram, Simon Peter Gary, George Edward Gary, James N. Gary and Clara Belle Ingersol. Two others were deceased by 1900.


William and Rebecca Gary's biography, Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. of Somerset County, Pennsylvania


Early in their marriage, the Garys dwelled across the state line from William's home region in Cumberland, Alleghany County, MD. By 1860, the family moved back into Pennsylvania. The family made the momentous decision in 1868 to migrated to Iowa. Ater making the voyage, they settled on a farm in Highland, Tama County. They are shown in Tama in the 1870 and 1880 federal censuses. In 1880, the federal census taker recorded that Rebecca and their 19-year-old daughter Katherine Elizabeth were inflicted with erysipelas, a form of bacterial skin infection.

The 1900 census shows William and Rebecca living as empty nesters, but with several farmhands living under their roof in Highland Township, Tama County. The tract was located about five miles south of Montour.

Rebecca passed away at the age of 66 on Sept. 1, 1903. Her remains were placed into rest in Maple Hill Cemetery in Montour, Tama County. Her entry in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., erred by stating 1904 as the year of death.


Maple Hill Cemetery where the Garys rest in Montour, Iowa


William survived his wife by eight years. At first he moved into the town of Marshalltown, where he spent a year and a half. Then he moved to Chicago to live with one his son Simon Peter. He returned and spent a year on the old home farm, and then made his final move into the household of his married daughter Belle Ingersoll located about seven miles southeast of Montour. He joined her in death at the age of 77 on March 27, 1911. An obituary in the Marshalltown Evening Times-Republican called him a "Tama County Pioneer" and said that he had resided in the Montour community for 42 years. Funeral services were conducted by Professor Masters of Leander Clark College.


Dr. Clark Gary

Son Dr. Isaiah "Clark" Gary (1858-1935) was born on March 4, 1858 in Cumberland, Allegany County, MD. He migrated in boyhood with his parents to Iowa and first settled in Tama County. After attending the local public school, he enrolled circa 1884 in Wilton Academy in Iowa and graduated in 1886 at the age of 28. He decided that he wanted to pursue a career in medicine, so in 1886 he entered Northwestern University in Chicago, completing his studies and earning his M.D. degree in 1889. Later in the year of his graduation, at the age of 31, on Sept. 24, 1889, he was wedded to 23-year-old Iowa native Minnie Esther Hayes (Nov. 1865- ? ), daughter of John A. and (?) (Maltbie) Hayes. Their nuptials were held in Rockwell City, Calhoun County, IA, presided over by Rev. L. Lovelace and witnessed by Rollin Burch and W.F. Smith. Together, the Garys bore a daughter, Ethel Gary. As a physician, Clark resided and practiced in Chicago for 46 years. Among many accomplishments, he served circa 1888 as assistant physician in the dispensary of the Armour Mission, and as assistant city physician on the South Side for two years. A biographical profile in The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois once said that:

...he established himself as a general practitioner in the center of a densely populated, largely foreign section of Chicago, and his first office room was at the corner of Archer Avenue and Twenty-second Street.... His life and practice here broght him into close touch with the great mass of suffering humanity, and his keen insight into human life and affairs, together with his kind hearted sympathy, soon led him to recognize the need of the people, and in 1897 he decided to found a hospital to be conduced on ethical and philanthropic principles, which was to be especially adapted to meet the needs of the people in moderate and humble circumstances. The plan was executed without the aid of subscriptions or outside contributions, and proved a success from the beginning.

He thus founded People's Hospital, which trained nurses in what was consideed the heart of the city's congested manufacturing railroad and lumber section. He served as its superintendent from 1897 up to his passing. Over time, the facility admitted 16,500 bed patients and 20,000 personal injury cases. Said The Historical Encyclopedia, "Dr. Gary has never turned away a single ambulance patient, and there is not a police patrol nor station in the city but knows that if they cannot take their patients elsewhere they are sure to find an 'open door' at People's Hospital." Circa 1900, the Garys made a home for 11 boarders and roomers in their personal residence. When the hospital building was sold in 1906, Clark and his leadership team had to find another site. The process launched a movement in which they secured possession of the same property and in June 1907 broke ground for a new building. At a cost of $60,000, and opened in November 1911, the structure stood four stories high, with dimensions of 40 feet by 100 feet, built of pressed brick in front and completely fireproof. The Historical Encyclopedia noted that the new hospital was "an open one, patients may receive the attention of their own family physician or the attendance of the physician at the hospital, or physicians may bring their patients to the hospital and treat them in either a private room or ward. Patients of all kinds are admitted with the exception of the insane and those suffering from contagious diseases."


Portion of Dr. Isaiah Clark Gary's biography, Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. of Somerset County, Pennsylvania


Clark held memberships in a wide variety of professional and community organizations. Among them were the American Medical Association, Illinois State Society and Chicago Medical Society, for which he served a term as president of the Stock Yards Branch. He belonged to the Masons, Eastern Star, Chicago Historical Society, Moose, Independent Order of Foresters, Association of Commerce and the Illinois and American Hospital Associations. He also belonged to the Art Institute, Poetry Lovers of America, Olympia Fields Country Club, Social Worker's Country Club and the Central Church, where he served as an elder. Interested in music, he studied under Fannie B. Linderman at the Chicago Musical College.

Clark and Minnie divorced sometime before 1902. She married again to Charles Putman (1866- ? ) and relocated to Denver, taking her daughter with them. At the age of 48, on Aug. 1, 1906, Clark married again Emma Caroline Bollinger ( ? - ? ), a resident of Primrose, Lee County, IA. Their nuptials were held in Kahoka, Clark County, MO, by the hand of Rev. C.D. Reichle. The couple did not reproduce. They dwelled at 253 West 22nd Street in Chicago. The pair is known to have sailed from Key West, FL to Cuba in February 1927. At the age of 77, on the Fourth of July 1935, Clark died in the hospital he had founded "after an illness of several weeks," reported the Chicago Tribune.

  • Granddaughter Ethel Roberta Gary (1891-1975) was born on Feb. 17, 1891 in Chicago. After her parents divorced, when she was a girl, she relocated to Denver to live with her mother and stepfather Charles Putman. She was joined in wedded union with Albert Hugo Larson (1882-1971). The only known son born to this marriage was Clark Gary Larson. The Larsons dwelled in Los Angeles in 1922 when their son was born. There, in 1930, Albert earned a living as a plumber, and Ethel as a stenographer for a bail bond office. Circa 1940, Albert was a janitor/custodian of a church, and Ethel working as a stenographer for the State of California. Death swept Albert away in May 1971. Interment was in the Little Church of the Flowers in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale. In an obituary in the Los Angeles Times, the family asked that any memorial donations be made to the American Cancer Society or to the Heart Fund. Ethel only lived for another four years. She succumbed to death in Los Angeles on July 21, 1975.

Great-grandson Clark Gary Larson (1922-2004) was born on June 13, 1922 in Los Angeles. On April 18, 1945, he married Barbara J. McGuire (April 6, 1922-1954), daughter of Robert T. and Betty (Pearlman) McGuire. The couple did not reproduce. Their address was 3126 Stocker Street. Circa 1954, Barbara was employed as a public relations supervisor for Pacific Telephone & Telegraph Company. Sadly, Barbara passed away in Los Angeles on July 12, 1954. An obituary in the Los Angeles Mirror News said that burial was in Ingoewood Park Cemetery. He died in Palm Desert, Riverside County, CA on March 26, 2004.

'Am having the time of my life in Tama'

Son Daniel W. Gary (1859-1903) was born in Aug. 1859 in Southampton Township, Somerset County, PA. He migrated as a boy to Iowa and during his growing-up years helped his father with farm labor. He went on to spend his working career as a farmer in or around Montour, Tama County. At the age of 37, on Nov. 21, 1895, he was joined in wedlock with 27-year-old Ida Harriet Harris (Sept. 1869-1931), a Montour resident who was the daughter of William and Elizabeth (Cooper) Harris. Rev. O.R. Newell officiated, with Laura Nichols and George Harris serving as witnesses. The bride was a decade younger than the groom. Their known children were Myrtle Irene Bridges and Maurice D. Gary. They lived on a farm in Highland Township, Tama County in 1900. Sadly, Daniel died in Tama County on Jan. 22, 1903, at the age of about 44. The U.S. Census of 1910 shows the widowed Ida heading a household along the state road in Howard Township, Tama County, with both children in the home, and she earning her "own income." By 1920, she had relocated into the town of Montour, Tama County, and shared a home with her son and married daughter and son-in-law. Ida Harriett passed away in 1931 at age 62. Interment of the remains was in Montour. This couple is not named in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD.

  • Granddaughter Myrtle Irene Gary (1898-2008) was born on June 28, 1898 in Tama County. She grew up as a reader of books, including Dickens' David Copperfield. She also learned to play piano and gave private lessons as a teen. When she was 20 years of age, on Feb. 16, 1918, she was joined in marriage with 23-year-old student Harold Ayne Bridges (1896- ? ) of Montour, Tama County and the son of W.D. and Anna (Nichols) Bridges. The wedding was performed by justice of the peace Homer James and witnessed by Richard Nelson. The couple lived in 1920 with Myrtle's widowed mother in Montour, and Harold earned a living as a hardware store clerk. They went on to produce two sons, Kendrick Gary Bridges Sr. and William Bridges. Harold earned a living selling hardware. The pair relocated in 1923 to Illinois, putting down roots in Highland Park, IL. Myrtle belonged to the Highland Park Women's Club, Daughters of the American Revolution and Red Hat Society. After three-plus decades there, they relocated in 1954 to Orlando, FL, and ran an orange grove. Sadly, Harold died at the age of 69 in about 1965. She also endured the 1987 death of her son Kendrick. Myrtle's final years were spent in the Orlando Lutheran Towers in Orlando. At age 107, she was profiled in the Orlando Sentinel newspaper. The article said that she "Her captivating smile, agility of movement, vivid recollections of past years and sharpness of mind would outshine most younger people's.... She remembers the first cars, telephones, electric light and electric refrigerator. With precision, she recalls names, dates and experiences during her full life of more than a century." She died there on Feb. 22, 2008, at the most extraordinary age of 109. An obituary was published in the Sentinel.
  • Grandson Maurice Dale Gary (1899-1985) was born on Nov. 14, 1899 in Tama County. During World War I, he joined the U.S. Army on Dec. 14, 1917 and served until Sept. 2, 1919. In 1920, unmarried at the age of 20, he had no occupation and resided at home. Circa 1940, he dwelled in the Iowa Soldiers' Home in Marshalltown, IA. He was twice-wed. His first bride was Ical Louise Hickman (Sept. 2, 1906-1966), a native of Mercer, Mercer County, MO. They were the parents of Marjorie J. Bailey and Inez Joann Peterson. The couple divorced. Then on Nov. 19, 1940, at age 42, he was joined in holy matrimony with 54-year-old Nellie (Hicks) Maddox ( ? - ? ) of Marshalltown. She was the daughter of Albert and Mary Hicks and a native of Kansas. It was her third marriage. Rev. C.H. Van Metre officiated. After the outbreak of World War II, he rejoined the military on Sept. 12, 1942 with honorable discharge on April 15, 1943. The couple relocated to Los Angeles and were there in 1948. By 1960, he moved back to Marshalltown. Maurice was cut away by the Angel of Death on July 9, 1985. Interment of his remains was in Oak Lawn Cemetery in Batesville, Independence County, AR..

Great-granddaughter Marjorie J. Gary (1927-1976) was born on Oct. 29, 1927 in Montour, Tama County. She married Harold O. Bailey ( ? - ? ). They lived at 1500 Lincoln Tower Circle in Marshalltown, Marshall County, IA. Marjorie served as assistant vice president of production for the Tulsa Division of Gra-Iron Foundry. Stricken with cancer, she died in M.D. Anderson Hospital in Houston, TX on April 26, 1976. The body was transported back to Marshalltown for cremation in Dunn Crematory.

Great-granddaughter Inez Joann Gary (1934-1998) was born on Jan. 31, 1934 in Montour, Tama County. On Aug. 30, 1956, at the age of 22, she he wedded Robert D. Peterson (1931-2013). They dwelled in the 1990s in East Dubuque, Jo Daviess County, IL. Death carried her away in Dubuque on Aug. 25, 1998. Burial was in Prairie View Cemetery in Gilman, IA.


Streetscape in Tama, Iowa


Daughter Catherine Elizabeth "Lizzie" Gary (1861-1936) was born on April 25, 1861 in Southampton Township, Somerset County, PA. She came to Iowa as a girl with her parents. Unmarried at the age of 19 in 1880, she suffered from erysipelas, a form of bacterial skin infection. On Dec. 22, 1882, at the age of 21, she was wedded to 22-year-old farmer Frederick Michael Ingram (Oct. 9, 1859-1936) -- also spelled "Ingraham" -- a native of Ingersoll, Canada whose parents were Robert and Rosanna (Siple) Ingram, the father an Irish immigrant. Rev. Richard L. Swann presided at the marriage ceremony, held in the home of Lizzie's parents and witnessed by her brother Isaiah "Clark" Gary and Lucy Winders. At the time, the groom resided on a farm in Tipton, IA. The Cedar Rapids Gazette said that the couple met when Lizzie was visiting relatives in Cedar County and he was a local farmer there. Fred apparently brought a son to the marriage, Emmon Ingram, born in Canada. They produced two known offspring -- William Ingram, born in Iowa; and Pearl Belle Ingram, born in Nebraska. For the first few years of marriage, the newlyweds dwelled on a farm in Cedar County. They relocated to Kearney, NE, where he operated a livery business over the span of seven years. In time, the Ingrams returned to Iowa to take possession of the Gary family farm five miles south of Montour, where they remained for two decades. The federal census of 1900 shows the combined family living together. Frederick was a Highland Township school director and trustee. Frederick joined the Masons in 1903 at Gilman, and as he moved around transferred his membership to the Montour and Tama lodges. In 1910, still in Tama County, they provided a home for Lizzie's aged, widowed father. The couple moved into the town of Tama during the 1910s and lived there on 9th Street in 1920, with Fred having no occupation, and married daughter Pearl in their home. In 1914, Frederick was elected to the Tama County Board of Supervisors and, representing the Fifth District, served in the position for three years. He later was president of the Tama Commercial Club and elected to City Council. Grief blanketed the family at the untimely death of their daughter Pearl in 1928. The Ingrams marked their golden wedding anniversary in 1932. Suffering from chronic kidney disease, the 74-year-old Lizzie was felled by a stroke and 10 days later died in Tama on May 18, 1936. The remains were lowered under the sod in Maple Hill Cemetery in Indian Village, Montour. Frederick only survived by another few months. He succumbed to death from a heart ailment on July 10, 1936. His passing was headline news in the Cedar Rapids Gazette, which referred to him as a "prominent Tama resident." Methodist Church pastor Rev. W.O. Ecklor led the funeral service, which included hymns performed by Ben Jones. Six of Frederick's nephews served as pallbearers -- Charles Gary, Russell Winders, Francis Hanify, Maurice Gary, Clark Ingersoll and William Gary. The Ingrams are spelled out in some detail in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD.

  • Grandson William Frederick Ingram (1883-1960) was born in Oct. 1883 in Iowa. He was unmarried in 1910 at the age of 25 and earned a living helping his father with farm labor. He went on to a working life as a farmer near Montour. When he was 28 years of age, on June 7, 1911, he was joined in the holy rites of wedlock with Bertha Dolezal ( ? - ? ), daughter of George and Mary (Kruble) Dolezal of Tama County. Rev. Ross Master officiated, with Della and Arthur Merritt as witnesses. Circa 1936, he occupied the old home farm southwest of Tama in Highland Township. William died in 1960. Nothing more is known.
  • Granddaughter Pearl "Belle" Ingram (1887-1927) was born in June 1887 in Nebraska. She wedded (?) Dana ( ? - ? ), also spelled "Vana." In 1920, married, she did not live with her husband but rather with her parents in the town of Tama, Tama County. Perhaps he was working away from home. The pair together in 1926 bore a son, Frederick Vana. The family was plunged into grief when Belle reputedly died in 1927 or 1928, at the age of 40.
  • Stepson Emmon (or "Emerson") Ingram (1876- ? ) was born in Nov. 1876 in Canada. As a 24-year-old, in 1900, he lived with his father and stepmother in Tama County and provided farm labor. Nothing more is known, other than he was not named in his father's newspaper obituary in 1936.

Son Simon Peter Gary Sr. (1863-1944) was born in about 1863 in Pennsylvania. A small boy when the family relocated to Iowa, he grew up assisting with chores on the family farm. When he was 33 years of age, in 1896, Simon became a lawyer, was admitted to the Illinois Bar and relocated to Chicago. His name appeared in newspapers in August 1899 when he was named to help investigate the officers of the American Home-Finding Association -- all pastors -- whose accounts were in question. That same year, with Swen Linderoth and Jones T. Beckman, Simon was an incorporator of the Alhambra Ceramic Works in Chicago. In 1901, at the age of 38, he was united in matrimony with 32-year-old Amelia L. Rauch (1869-1912). The couple produced one daughter, Mildred Anderson. Simon added to his investment portfolio in 1906 as an incorporator of the Illinois Furniture Company in partnership with Louis Roscezweig and Sol. Finkel. His law office circa 1907 was at 59 Dearborn Street in the Windy City. Their dwelling in 1910, as shown in the federal census enumeration, was in Chicago's 2nd Ward, and their home in 1912 was at 3161 South Fifth Street. Sadness blanketed the family when Amelia died in mid-August 1912. Funeral services were held in the Second German Methodist Episcopal Church. Her death notice in the Chicago Tribune noted that she was the sister of F.A. Rauch and Mary K. Kamping. Circa 1914, he was president of the German National Life Insurance Company, reported by the Chicago Inter-Ocean as "honest, reliable and efficient." In September 1916, he was pictured in the Chicago Tribune as a "Reunited Progressive Republican Party" candidate for judge of the Municipal Court. On May 3, 1917, in Chicago, he married again to 30-year-old Rosetta A. (Busse) Mench (1888- ? ), whose parents were German immigrants. The second marriage produced two more children, Simon Peter Gary Jr. and Lois Case. The family made a home at 917 Lyman Avenue in Chicago's Oak Park community and remained there for decades. Simon died at home on March 7, 1944, at the age of 81. Funeral services were held in the Chicago Temple, and an obituary was published in the Chicago Tribune. Burial was in Graceland Cemetery.

  • Granddaughter Mildred C. Gary (1904- ? ) was born in about 1904 in Chicago. She married (?) Anderson.
  • Grandson Simon Peter Gary Jr. (1919-2010) was born on May 15, 1919 in Chicago. He stood 5 feet, 9 inches tall, weighed 145 lbs. and had blue eyes and brown hair. In the late 1930s he is believed to have resided with his father at 917 Lyman Avenue in Oak Park, IL but by 1940 had relocated to Indianapolis, IN, where he enrolled in Rose Polytechnic Institute of Terre Haute, NI. By 1944, he married Betty Lorrean Beeson ( ? - ? ) and had produced four offspring, Simon Peter Gary III, Cheryl Currie, Jean Dolezal and Karen Tjernlund. Sadly, their son died in Oak Park as he neared his second birthday on Sept. 4, 1945. The family moved to a residence in Villa Park. Simon spent his final years as a widower in St. Charles, IL. He passed into eternity at the age of 90 on Feb. 28, 2010. His obituary was printed in the Chicago Tribune naming all of his grandchildren. Funeral services were held at the First Baptist Church of Geneva.
  • Granddaughter Lois Gary (1922- ? ) was born in about 1922 in Chicago. She was joined in wedlock with James Case ( ? - ? ). James was deceased by 2010.


George Gary's farm, Section 9, Highland Township (circled), near the schoolhouse and south of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad, 1916.



Detail of the Gary tract. Atlas of Tama County

Son George Edward Gary (1865-1942) was born on Jan. 15, 1865 in Pennsylvania or Maryland. (Records differ.) He migrated with his parents to Iowa at the age of four. As a teenager, he provided work on the family farm. On March 10, 1890, he married Mary Martin (March 31, 1869- ? ), a native of New York City and the daughter of Tama County pioneers Robert and Margaret (Woods) Martin. The wedding was held in the bride's home, officiated by Rev. Cleoworth of the Methodist church. They had six offspring, Charles E. Gary, Grace Williams, William Gary, Mabel Hanify, Mary Weaver and Nellie Winders. Over the years, George became a "prominent Tama county farmer and extensive land owner," said the Waterloo (IA) Courier. "They lived for 27 years on a farm in Highland township three and one-half miles south of Montour. In 1917 they moved to an acreage in Toledo township and lived there and in Toledo for 14 years. In 1931 they moved to a farm owned by Mr. Gary in Crystal township and have resided there for the past nine years." From 1922 to 1931, George also served on the Tama County board of supervisors, including six years as board chair. He was active in the Masons and as a Highland Township official as well as a charter member of the Tama County Farm Bureau. Mary belonged to the Nineteenth Century Club in Toledo and was a member of the Rural Housewives Club. When they reached their 50th wedding anniversary, in March 1940, a dinner was held for the family at Knotty Pine Cafe in Toledo, IA. On May 26, 1942, George succumbed at the age of 77 in Kocher Hospital in Toledo from the effects of high blood pressure. An obituary was printed in the Courier.

  • Grandson Charles E. Gary (1891- ? ) was born in Dec. 1891 in Iowa. On March 10, 1915, he was married to (?). The nuptials were held in Tama, officiated by Rev. Cleoworth. The Garys had two sons, Ronald R. Gary and Gaylord E. Gary. They dwelled on the family farm in Montour, Highland Township. Charles earned a living as manager of the Tama County unit of the Iowa Poultry Producers Marketing Association. Charles also was a member of the Farm Bureau, president of the Montour National Farm Loan Association and president of Tama County Sales Company. The couple celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary in March 1940 with a family meal at Knotty Pine Cafe in Toledo, IA.
  • Granddaughter Nellie M. Gary (1893-1981) was born in Oct. 1893 in Tama County. She was joined in wedlock with Russell Winders ( ? - ? ). Their two offspring were Robert Winders and Helen McIntyre. They lived in Toledo for decades and were members of Otterbein United Methodist Church. As a widow, Nellie relocated in about 1980 to West Des Moines. Sadly, she succumbed at the age of 88 in West Park Care Center in Des Moines. An obituary was published in the Des Moines Tribune. Burial was in Woodlawn Cemetery in Toledo.

Great-granddaughter Helen Winders (1914-2008) was born on Christmas Eve 1914 in Montour, Tama County. After graduation from high school in Toledo, IA, she became employed by Corn-Hog Organization and thence went to work for the Farm Security Administration. On May 19, 1939, at the age of 23, she entered into marriage with Edward McIntyre Sr. Their wedding was held in the Little Brown Church in the Vail in Nashua, IA. One son was born to this union, Edward McIntyre Jr. For many years, the couple made their home in Des Moines. Helen worked for the Krendak law firm, an insurance company and a real estate title abstractor. In retirement, they spent their winters in Zephyr Hills, FL. On Easter Sunday 2003, they moved into Greenfield Manor in or near Des Moines. Helen passed away there on Nov. 14, 2008. The remains were interred in Toledo's Woodlands Cemetery. Her obituary appeared in the Des Moines Register, which noted that their son was in Kansas City and grandson Jeffery S. McIntyre in San Diego, and that their son's wife Connie Novak McIntyre had died on Oct. 30, 2003.

Great-grandson Robert Winders wedded Norma Weller. They made their home in 2008 in Greenfield, IA.

  • Granddaughter Grace Gary (1899?-1987) was born in Dec. 1899 in Tama County. She lived in Cedar Rapids, IA in 1940. She pursued a career and worked in the accounting department of Collins Radio Company. On Oct. 20, 1948, she was joined in marriage with farmer Isaac J. Williams ( ? -1978). The ceremony was held at Little Brown Church at Nashua, IA, with Rev. F.L. Hanscom officiating. Reported the Waterloo (IA) Courier, "Mr. Williams is a farmer in Muscatine county. In December the couple will leave for California, where they will spend the winter." Isaac died in 1978 after three decades of marriage. Grace lived for another nine years as a widow, maintaining a residence in Toledo. toward the end, she was admitted to Bethesda Care Center in Toledo, where she died on Dec. 28, 1987. An obituary was printed in the Davenport (IA) Quad City Times.
  • Grandson William Henry Gary Sr. (1903?-1969) was born in abouit 1903. He made his home in Toledo, the county seat of Tama County. He married Lola Chally ( ? - ? ). The couple produced two children -- William Gary Jr. and Celia Mathern. A stepson, Bill, was involved with this family. William passed away at the age of 66, in a hospital in Marshalltown, on Sept. 21, 1969. His remains were lowered into the soil of Maple Hill Cemetery in Montour, with an obituary appearing in the Waterloo Courier.

Great-grandson William Henry "Bill" Gary Jr. (1932-2012) was born on Nov. 21, 1932 on a farm north of Toledo, Tama County. After high school, he received a degree in animal husbandry from Iowa State University and joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps. In time he joined the U.S. Air Force, serving during the Korean War, including a post in Red Cliff, St. John's in Newfoundland as an air traffic controller. On Aug. 7, 1960, he was joined in the bonds of wedlock witth Rebecca "Becky" Olson ( ? - ? ). Their nuptials are believed to have occurred in Albert Lea, MN. Two children were born to this marriage -- William Henry Gar III and Carol Meyer. The couple dwelled initially in Toledo and then in 1967 relocated to a farm north of town. They held a longtime membership in the Garwin United Methodist Church, where William was active on committees and boards and sang in the choir. They continued farming until retirement in 2000, but continued to live on site. The couple's union of 48 years came to a close with Rebecca's passing on April 14, 2009. William lived for another three years and contracted cancer. As a patient at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, in Iowa City, he succumbed to the angel of death at the age of 79 on Jan. 25, 2012. An obituary noted that their son resided in Hammond, WI and daughter in Toledo.

Great-granddaughter Celia Gary married Wayne Mathern. They bore at least one son, Dr. Gary W. Mathern. The couple lived circa 1969 in Alexandria, VA. In 2012, they made a residence in Richmond, VA. Evidence suggests that son Gary receided his medical degree in 1982 from Case Western Reserve University and today is a neurosurgeon and director of epilepsy surgery in the Brain Research Institute at the University of Southern California in Los Angels (UCLA).

  • Granddaughter Mabel Gary (1905-1993) was born on Sept. 20, 1905 in Toledo, Tama County. She married Francis J. Hanify (Oct. 19, 1904-1975). They dwelled in Toledo for years and are believed to have been the parents of Gary Hanify and Barbara Hanify. Circa 1940, the federal census enumeration shows Francis working as a sales agent for Standard Oil Company. Sadly, Francis died at the age of 70 in March 1975. Mabel outlived him by 23 years. She remained in Toledo as of 1981 and by 1987 had migrated to Cedar Rapids. She died at the age of 87 on Jan. 23, 1993, with a brief death notice printed in the Des Moines Register. Burial was in Holy Trinity Cemetery in Vining, IA.

Great-grandson Gary Hanify (1932-1961) was born on July 30, 1932 in Toledo, Tama County. In 1951, he graduated from the American Institute of Business at Des Moines. On June 13, 1954, in nuptiels held in Des Moines, he married Mary E. Tschantz ( ? - ? ), daughter of Donald and Imogene (Wade) Tschantz and stepdaughter of Harriet c. Tschantz. During their brief married life together, the couple produced a daughter, Karen Hanify. Gary received his degree in January 1956 from Drake University, where he had become a member of the Reserve Officer Training Corps. He joined the U.S. Air Force and rose to the rank of lieutenant. His early Air Force years were spent in California and in Salina, KS. In 1961, during the Vietnam War, he was posted to Forbes Air Force Base in Topeka, KS, as a member of the 40th Bomber Wing of the Strategic Air Command. On the tragic day of Feb. 24, 1961, while aboard a B-47 jet bomber on a low-level practice flight, the 28-year-old Gary was one of four crew members instantly killed with the aircraft crashed in Hurley, WI. The Eau Claire (WI) Leader-Telegram reported that it was a "flaming crash ... in snow covered timber country." The others lost were Capt. James P. Jarrett, 1st Lt. Charles F. Weise and 1st Lt. Theodore H. Stalmach. Gary's body was recovered and lowered into honored sleep in  Glendale Cemetery. His obituary was published in the Des Moines Register and Waterloo Courier and as far away as the Los Angeles Times. Mary was left as a widow with a young daughter to raise. Later that year, in December 1961, she married again to John L. Krill ( ? - ? ), also of the Air Force. Their union endured for 44 years. John adopted Karen as his own, and the couple bore a son of their own, John F. "Chip" Krill. When they were in Redlands, CA, Mary was a teacher's aid  for five years. John retired in 1977, and they moved to Henderson, NV, near Las Vegas. Mary died in Henderson at the age of 71 on April 21, 2006. An obituary in the Las Vegas Review-Journal noted that Karen married Scott Dangermond and resided in Salem, OR.

Great-granddaughter Barbara Hanify (1934- ? ) was born in about 1934 in Toledo, Tama County. She wedded (?) Engholm ( ? - ? ). The pair dwelled in Cedar Rapids, IA in 1961.

  • Granddaughter Mary Gary wedded Roy Weaver. In 1940-1987, their residence was in Toledo.


High Street and Broadway intersection in Toledo, Iowa


Son James N. Gary (1867- ? ) was born in about 1867 in Pennsylvania.

Daughter Clara "Belle" Gary (1869- ? ) was born in about November 1869 in Iowa. She was joined in the bonds of marriage with Fred Ingersol ( ? - ? ). The two offspring known to have been born to this union were Lola Ingrsol and Charles Gary Ingersol. Circa 1911, they resided on a farm seven miles southeast of Montour, IA. This family is detailed to some extent in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD.


~ Son George G. Gaumer ~

Son George G. Gaumer (1835-1868) was born on Sept. 8, 1835 in Southampton Township.

Following in the steps of his uncle and aunt, Samuel and Susanna (Korns) Gaumer, he is known to have migrated to Iowa, where he settled in Iowa County. He was in Iowa when named in a legal notice published in a March 1865 edition of the Somerset Herald and Whig in connection with the estate of his late parents.

At the age of 34, on April 1, 1866, he was united in marriage with Sarah A. Carroll ( ? - ? ), daughter of W.J. and Jane Carroll.


Portion of George and Sarah Gaumer's biography, Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. of Somerset County, Pennsylvania


During their brief wedded life, they bore two known sons, William "Norman" Gaumer and George G. Gaumer.

Sadly, George died just two years after their nuptials, just two days before Christmas 1868, at the age of 33. Interment was in Calvary Cemetery in Victor, Iowa County.

In about 1871, after more than two years of mourning, Sarah married a second time.

George and his family are listed in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD.

Son William "Norman" Gaumer (1867-1928) was born in about 1867 in Victor, IA. He married Effie Sophia (Cadwell) Pryor (Aug. 4, 1860-1943), a native of Independence, IA and the daughter of C.C. and Emily (Ross) Cadwell, the father from Wisconsin and the mother from Vermont. The Gaumers produced three children -- Sidney Carroll Gaumer, George Dewey Gaumer and Dorothy Louise Legvold. The family put down roots in Manilla, Crawford County, IA. There, Norman earned a living as an insurance agent. Sadly, at the age of 60, he suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and passed into the realm of eternity on Jan. 13, 1928. Burial was in Nishnabotna Cemetery. Effie outlived her spouse by 15 years. She relocated to Perry, Dallas County, IA. When her health declined due to heart disease and hardening of the arteries, as well as pneumonia, she was admitted to The Retreat in Des Moines, where she spent the final month and 16 days of her life. She died at the age of 82 on July 8, 1943. Her remains were interred in Manilla Cemetery.

  • Grandson Sidney Carroll Gaumer (1896-1936) was born on Dec. 2, 1896 in Dunlap, Harrison County, IA. He never married. Sidney served in the U.S. Army during World War I. He held the rank of private in Battery A of the 40th Artillery, Coast Artillery Corps. About a year after the war ended, he began to suffer from "dementia praecox," defined as "precicious madness" with symptoms of a chronic psychotic disorder. He was admitted to the U.S. Veterans Hospital in Knoxville, Marion County, IA, where he remained for seven years and almost five months. Death blessedly took him away at the age of 38 on Feb. 10, 1936. His entry in the Michael Korns Sr. book reflects his stay  at the Knoxville hospital. The body was transported to Manilla for burial.
  • Grandson George Dewey Gaumer ( ? - ? ) was united in matrimony with Irene Eaton ( ? - ? ). They produced two children, Lora Frances Gaumer and George Norman Gaumer. George's address circa 1949 was 116 South 9th Street in Fort Dodge, IA.
  • Granddaughter Dorothy Louise Gaumer (1901- ? ) was born in about 1901 in Dunlap, IA. She made a home in young womanhood in Manilla, Crawford County, IA. In nuptials held in Anamosa, IA on Nov. 26, 1924, the 23-year-old Dorothy entered into wedlock with 23-year-old Samson T. Legvold ( ? - ? ), son of Lars and Nellie (Crummel) Legvold of Madrid, IA. Congregational Church pastor Rev. Ernest Evans led the wedding service, with W.M. Foster and his wife serving as witnesses. At the time of marriage, Sampson was a bridge carpenter, making his residence in Perry, IA. At some point they dwelled in Manilla, IA, and later in Perry, IA, with an address of 1723 Willis Avenue. The couple were the parents of Samson T. Legvold Jr., Dorothy Lavonne Legvold and Velta May Legvold.

Son George G. Gaumer (1869-1892) was born in January 1869 in or around Victor, IA, about a month after his father died. He only lived to the age of 23 years, minus one day, and succumbed on Jan. 2, 1892. Burial was in Calvary Cemetery in Victor, Iowa County. He is named in the Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. book.


Hannah Gaumer grave, 1863

~ Daughter Hannah Gaumer ~

Daughter Hannah Gaumer (1846- 1863) was born in about 1846 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County.

As with her elder sisters Elisabeth and Delilah, Hannah was doomed to an early death. The Grim Reaper swept her away at the age of 17 years, eight months and 17 days on Sept. 25, 1863. Burial was in Cook Cemetery in Somerset County.

A stone marker was placed at her grave, and an epitaph was inscribed at the base -- legible when photographed in September 2016 -- reading "Weep not, she is not dead but sleepeth."


Elisabeth Ann's grave, 1858

~ Daughter Elisabeth Ann Gaumer ~

Daughter Elisabeth Ann Gaumer (1840-1858) was born in about 1840 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County.

She was not fated to reach full adulthood.

Heartache enveloped the family on Dec. 1858, when Elisabeth passed away at the age of 18. Burial was in Cook Cemetery, and a stone was erected at the grave.

There is an inscription on the marker which is somewhat legible today, spelling out that she was the "Dau. of D. & E. Gaumer."

Her gravestone was photographed by the founder of this website in September 2016.


Delilah's grave, 1860

~ Daughter Delilah Gaumer ~

Daughter Delilah Gaumer (1834-1860) was born in about 1834 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County.

She apparently never married.

Tragically, just 13 days after reaching her 26th birthday, Delilah died on March 1, 1860. Her remains were placed into eternal repose in Cook Cemetery. The cause of her untimely passing is not known.

Her grave marker -- laying flat on the ground -- was photographed by the founder of this website in September 2016. The inscription reads that she was the spelling out that she was the "Dau. of D. & E. Gaumer."


~ Son Solomon G. Gaumer ~

Son Solomon G. Gaumer (1842-1923) was born on June 4, 1842 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County.

Solomon moved west "in an early day," said an Iowa newspaper, and became a pioneer settler of Iowa, settling in Fairfield, Jefferson County. He was in Iowa when named in a legal notice published in a March 1865 edition of the Somerset Herald and Whig in connection with the estate of his late parents.

At the age of 29, on Oct. 5, 1871, he was united in marriage with teacher Anna Mary "Annie" Stewart (1850-1920), daughter of John B. and Frances (Barton) Stewart.

The couple produced nine children, among them Dr. James "Stewart" Gaumer, Jessie May Gaumer, John Edward Gaumer, Dr. Archie Winnett Gaumer, Dr. Rolla Raymond Gaumer, Frances Bernice "Fannie" Breniman, Bessie Pearle Gaumer, Charles Carl Gaumer and Hugh Donald Gaumer.


Fairfield, Iowa -- the south side of the town square


As newlyweds, they made their home in the town of Victor, IA. Beginning in 1873, said the Fairfield Daily Ledger, they "lived continuously in Center township, until 1910, when the family moved to Fairfield." As longtime farmers, their tract was in Section 4. 

In January 1907, when a Fairfield Township tax controversy, he and T.C. Ross and Louis Barrow submitted a petition to establish territory outside of the town of Fairfield as a separate township. There was no opposition, and the matter was approved, thus creating Center Township. He is named in volume 1 of the 1914 book History of Jefferson County, Iowa: A Record of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievement, authored by Charles J. Fulton.

Sadly, Solomon suffered a stroke on Dec. 1, 1916 which left him an invalid for the remaining seven years of his life. For a year and a half, the helpless Solomon was cared for at home, but in June 1918 he entered Jefferson County Hospital.

The federal census of 1920 shows the Gaumers in Fairfield, with their daughter Bessie Pearle and brother-in-law John Stewart in the household.

Annie died on Sept. 7, 1920, ending a marriage which had spanned 49 years.

Solomon outlived her by three years and became senile. He was admitted to Jefferson County Hospital where he passed away on Oct. 4, 1923. Burial was in Evergreen Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave] An obituary printed in the Daily Ledger noted that he had:

...been cared for there longer than any other patient who has ever been in the hospital. During all of this time he has retained his mental faculties, always knew his old friends and was interested in all that was going on about him. He has been a great sufferer and death has come in a welcome release after long months of anguish and pain. Mr. Gaumer was a man of quiet character who never aspired to public notice, was a kind father and a good neighbor.

In filling out his father's death certificate, son Stewart could not furnish the names of Solomon's parents.

Solomon's family branch was detailed in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD. They also are described and pictured in a 1977 book authored by their granddaugter, Mildred B. Belknap, This I Remember, Including Breniman and Gaumer Genealogy Notes (124 pages). The book notes that Solomon's birth paper was preserved in Mildred's cedar chest, a gift from her Aunt Bessie Gaumer.

Son Dr. James "Stewart" Gaumer (1872-1946) was born on Sept. 13, 1872 in Victor, Poweshiek/Iowa Counties, IA. He was a 1897 graduate of Parsons College in Fairfield and a 1900 graduate of Rush Medical College. On June 18, 1902, when he was 30 years of age, he married 27-year-old Minnie Marie Corey ( ? - ? ), daughter of Erick and M.L. (Johnson) Carey of Fairfield who were considered pioneers of the state. Minnie was a 1896 graduate of Parsons College with a bachelor of science. They produced one son, Stewart Corey Gaumer. During the Spanish American War, he enlisted in the 50th Infantry, Company M, and served from April 26, 1898 to Nov. 30, 1898. Armed with his medical degree, he became a physician, with a practice in Danville, IA in 1902 and in Fairfield, IA circa 1912-1923. In 1909, he served as coroner of Jefferson County. Husband and wife were active circa 1912-1913 in the college's Alumni Association, with Minnie on the executive committee and James on the editorial staff of The Alumni Quarterly. During World War I, he served as a medical officer and lieutenant with the ambulance company of the Iowa National Guard. Stewart's aged father resided with them for a time up to his death in 1923. The family was in Fairfield circa 1945 when Stewart was named in the Davenport Daily Times obituary of his brother Charles. Their address was 808 South Main Street. Stewart affectionately was known as "Uncle Doc" to his nieces and nephews. They are named in a book authored by their niece, Mildred B. Belknap, This I Remember, Including Breniman and Gaumer Genealogy Notes (124 pages). He was named to the Fellowship of the American College of Physicians in 1920 at a meeting of the American Congress of Internal Medicine, and held this honor for 26 years until death. Just four days before his 74th birthday, he was felled by a heart attack and passed away in his sleep at Fairfield on Sept. 9, 1946. The remains were interred in Evergreen Cemetery in Fairfield.

  • Grandson Stewart Corey Gaumer (1918-2005) was born in 1918. As a young man he attended Parsons College in Iowa and received a bachelor's degree from the University of Iowa. He then moved to Philadelphia to earn a master of arts degree at the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce at the University of Pennsylvania. Then during World War II, he joined the U.S. Army and, with the rank of lieutenant, was stationed at Conley, near Atlanta, GA with the Medical Administrative Corps. On June 19, 1943, he entered into marriage with Virginia Patterson "Ginnie" Whaler ( ? - 2001), daughter of Charles Edgar and Elizabeth Georgiana (Monford) Whaler of Atlanta. The couple's nuptials were held in the Winship Chapel of the First Presbyterian Church of Atlanta, by the hand of Rev. Dr. William V. Gardner. In annoucing the event, the Atlanta Constitution said that the bride "was gowned in a modish costume of aqua and white printed sheer crepe which was ornamented with a handson Eisenberg clip. Heer becoming small hat was fashioned entirely of white daisies with brown centers and draped with brown shadow veiling which fell to the waistline. Completing the costume were long white globes, alligator shoes and accessories." Virginiawas a graduate of Washington Seminary and the Atlanta School of Interior Decorating. The pair produced at least one son, Stewart Gaumer Jr. Sadly, Virginia passed away on July 22, 2001. He died on June 13, 2005 after a very active career in Fairfield.

    Great-grandson Stewart Gaumer Jr. married Barbara. Their three sons were Matthew James Gaumer, David Gaumer and Richard LaRue Gaumer. Sadly, their son Richard died young. The couple divorced, and Stewart wed again by 2005 to Carolyn (?), moving to White Plains, NY. Further heartache rocked the family when their son Matthew was killed at age 28, on June 27, 1999 in an automobile accident along Interstate 80 near Colfax, IA. Prior to his tragic death, Matthew held a bachelor's degree from Drake University (1993) and master's degree from the University of Iowa (1999), was an adjunct instructor at the University of Iowa's Department of Sport, Health, Leisure and Physical Studies, and was a co-facilitator of a suicide support group in Iowa City.

    Great-grandson David Gaumer married Renee and dwelled in Naples, FL in 1999. 

Daughter Jessie May Gaumer (1874-1875) was born in 1874 in Fairfield. She died at the tender age of about one on Sept. 6, 1875, with an obituary appearing three days later in the Fairfield Ledger. Burial was in Old Fairfield Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave]

Son John "Edward" Gaumer (1876-1945) was born in about 1876. He is believed to have been a pharmacist and to have been licensed by the Iowa Board of Pharmacy (#6681). He was twice married. His first bride was Nellie Teachnor ( ? -1923). Sadly, Nellie died in 1923. After a year as a widower, John was wedded in 1924 to Lea Krumm/Krum ( ? - ? ). They resided in Denver in 1923 and later San Francisco, CA. He succumbed to death in San Francisco at the age of 70 in about September 1945, with a very brief notice of his passing printed in the Des Moines Tribune.

Son Dr. Archie Winnett Gaumer, DDS (1878-1920) was born in 1878 in Fairfield. After completing his common school education, he attended a college of dentistry at Keokuk, IA and became a dentist. He established a long-time practice in Bloomfield, IA. During World War I, he was commissioned as a first lieutenant and served in the Army. In 1919, he opened an office in Des Moines. He married Edith Anschutz (1877-1945). The couple did not reproduce. In 1920, in failing health, he and Edith made their home with her parents in Fairfield. In July of that year, he traveled to Quincy, IL to visit for a week, but his health failed, and he passed away on July 21, 1920, at the age of 42. Burial was in Evergreen Cemetery in Fairfield, with an obituary printed in the Burlington Hawk-Eye newspaper. Edith survived her husband by a quarter of a century and apparently remained in Fairfield. She died there on Aug. 16, 1945. Burial was with her husband in Evergreen Cemetery.

Son Dr. Rolla Raymond Gaumer (1880- ? ) was born in about 1880. He wedded Bessie Ensley ( ? - ? ). They dwelled for years in Galesburg, IL, where Rolla had a dental practice.

Daughter Frances Bernice "Fannie" Gaumer (1882-1951) was born in 1882. At the age of 23, on Feb. 23, 1904, she married 25-year-old farmer Ernest Eugene Breniman (1870- ? ), a resident of Brooklyn, IA and the son of Gotlieb and Barbara (Strasser) Breniman. Rev. Alex Corkey led the nuptials, with Rolla Gaumer and Clara Breniman attending as witnesses. Ernest attended a Des Moines business college for a year. They had met at a wedding of Ernest's cousin Ella Brenimen (daughter of Matilda Gaumer) and George Freese. The couple had four children, among them Lester Breniman, Mildred Belknap, Gorrest Breniman and Ruth Breniman. Their home circa 1923-1945 was in four miles southwest of the town of Brooklyn, Poweshiek County, IA. The Brenimans are listed was in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD. For the last five years of her life, Frances suffered with hardening of the arteries leading to the heart. She was stricken by a heart attack and admitted to Community Hospital in nearby Grinnell, where she succumbed to the angel of death at the age of 69 on May 6, 1951. Her remains were laid to rest in the cemetery of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in Brooklyn.

  • Grandson Lester Breniman (1905- ? ) was born in about 1905. He relocated to Evelyth, MN.
  • Granddaughter Mildred Gaumer (1908- ? ) was born in 1908. She attended Parsons College in Fairfield and there met her husband, Clinton/Lester Belknap. Evidence suggests that they established their residence in Chicago.
  • Grandson Gorrest Breniman (1913- ? ) was born in 1913. He resided in Brooklyn, IA.
  • Granddaughter Ruth Breniman (1918- ? ) was born in 1918 and made a home in Brooklyn, IA.

Daughter Bessie Pearle Gaumer (1885-1960) was born in about 1885. She never married and lived in Fairfield, IA in 1923. She was loving and generous to her nieces and nephews, and once gave a niece funds to travel to Detroit to attend a student volunteer convention. She was a member of the Daughters of the American Colonists, carrying member  number 11565. Said the Fairfield Daily Ledger, she was "was employed for a number of years at the Iowa Malleable Iron company. She was later employed in the county auditor's office until her retirement nine years ago. She was a member of the Methodist church, Chapter C, PEO, Order of Eastern Star and the Women's club." She died in 1960 and was interred with her parents and brother Hugh.

Son Charles Carl Gaumer (1887-1945) was born on May 31, 1887 in Fairfield, Jefferson County, IA. In adulthood he was of medium height and build, with brown hair and brown eyes. He married Eleanor Carlson (1890- ? ). They produced four known children -- Arvid "Harold" Gaumer, Helene Lundeen, Walter Gaumer and Archie Gaumer. The family dwelled in Fairfield at the address of 406 West Hempsted Street. Circa 1917, when he was age 30, he was employed as a carpenter, working for Geo Stevens [spelling?]. At that time, he was required to register for the military draft, and disclosed that he had a wife and two children. He eventually joined in the U.S. Army during the war. When the federal census enumeration was made in 1920, the Gaumers lived in Hampton, Rock Island County, IL, where he worked as a mechanic in a local railroad shop. In the late 1930s or early '40s, he relocated to East Moline, Rock Island County, IL, considered part of the "quad city area." He belonged to the American Legion post and Eagles lodge in Moline. Sadly, at the age of 57, he died after what the Davenport (IA) Daily Times called "a lingering illness." Burial was in the Moline Memorial Park.

  • Grandson Arvid "Harold" Gaumer (1911-1991) was born on March 12, 1911 in Fairfield, Jefferson County, IA. When he was 23 years of age, on Jan. 17, 1935, he was united in holy matrimony with Elinor Francis Jones ( ? - 1993). The wedding ceremony was held in East Moline, IL. Together, the couple bore two children -- Joy Ann Huggins and Harold Gaumer. For years, they resided in East Moline, with Harold working at the U.S. Post Office. He was active with the Boy Scouts and liked to camp and fish. The pair relocated to California in about 1953 and established a home in South Gate, CA. with Harold going to work for ITT Gilfallen in Los Angeles. In about 1976 they moved to Twenty Nine Palms, CA. Sadly, at the age of 79, Harold surrendered to death in Palm Springs' Desert Hospital on Jan. 12, 1991. The remains were laid to rest in Mountain Valley Memorial Park in Joshua Tree, CA. An obituary was printed in his hometown newspaper, the Moline Dispatch. Elinor lived as a widow for another two years. Death swept her away at age 78 on May 15, 1993.

    Great-granddaughter Joy Ann Gaumer was an alumna of East Moline High School. She was employed in 1953-1954 at John Deere & Company. On Jan. 7, 1954, at First Methodist Church, Moline, she wed Garry Frank Huggins ( ? -1980), an alum of Roosevelt Military Academy of Aledo, and son of Frank Huggins. Rev. Joseph Partridge officiated. In announcing the wedding, the Moline Dispatch said that the "bride's gown of ivory brocade satin was of princess style with brown mink collar and the full skirt was of floor length. She wore brown accessories and a mink headband and carried a white orchid." At the time, Garry earned a living with Balkan Packing Company. They too migrated to California shortly after marriage and dwelled in Whittier, CA, at 1738 West Road. Three sons born into the family were Steve Huggins, Wayne Huggins and Glen Huggins. Garry was employed wih Jersey Maid Company of Los Angeles in a data processing capacity. The family was plunged into grief when Garry passed away at age 44 on Jan. 31, 1980. An obituary in his hometown newspaper, the Dispatch, said that the family had been in California for 25 years, and that burial was held there. As a widow, Joy Ann made a residence in LaHabra Heights, CA in 1991-1993.

    Great-grandson Harold Gaumer made his home in 1991 in Paradise, CA and in 1993 in Magalia, CA. 

  • Granddaughter Helene K. Gaumer (1913-1998) was born on March 12, 1913 in Fairfield, Jefferson County, IA. She was a 1931 graduate of East Moline High School and went on in 1935 to earn a degree at Parsons College in Fairfield. She furthered her studies at the University of Iowa, Northwestern University, Black Hawk College and Western Illinois University. From 1935 to 1938, she was a teacher at Brighton High School. Then for 17 years, she was a teacher in East Moline for United Township High School. On Dec. 7, 1941 -- the very same day as the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor -- she wed Leroy Garland Lundeen (March 27, 1907-1982) in a ceremony held in East Moline. They made a home in Helene's hometown. Four children born to the couple were Christina Lee Lundeen, Daniel Carl "Dan" Lundeen, James Oscar Lundeen and Thomas Lundeen. Sadly, they bore the untimely death of son Thomas in 1970. Leroy went on to serve in the U.S. Army during World War II. Afterward, he was self-employed as a lathing contractor. He retired in 1962 at the age of 55. In addition to raising a brood of offspring, Helene was very active in the community as a member of Christ United Methodist Church and president of both the United Methodist Women and McKinley School Parent-Teacher Association. She also was involved with the East Moline Women's Club, Kings Daughters, Pi Kappa Delta and Theta Alpha Phi sororities. She belonged to the Moline Public Hospital Auxiliary, Illinois Retired Teachers Association, American Association of University Women. Sadly, Leroy died in Quincy, IL at age 75 on Aug. 3, 1982. His funeral service was led by his pastor, Rev. Robert Lawry, with an obituary appearing in the Rock Island Argus. the remains were interred in the National Cemetery at the Rock Island Arsenal. Helene outlived him by 16 years. She remained in East Moline at the address of 545 42nd Avenue. She joined her spouse in eternity on April 2, 1998. Funeral services were held at the family church, with burial following in Greenview Memorial Gardens. She was pictured in an obituary in the Moline Dispatch.

    Great-granddaughter Christina Lee Lundeen has never married. She resided in 1982-1998 in Alexandria, VA.

    Great-grandson Daniel Carl "Dan" Lundeen did not wed. He was in Moline in 1982. Later he migrated to Virginia and settled in Alexandria, VA.

    Great-grandson James Oscar Lundeen was joined in matrimony with Mary Virginia Booth. They have dwelled in Yakima, WA circa 1982-2022. The couple's two children are James Lundeed and Corrie Walden. Son James graciously has contributed content for this biography.

  • Grandson Walter C. Gaumer (1917- 2001) was born on Dec. 29, 1917. He relocated to San Francisco and was there in 1945. He is known to have been in Gold Beach, Curry County, OR in the 1990s and early 2000s. Walter was gathered away by the angel of death on Oct. 21, 2001.
  • Grandson Archie W. Gaumer (1922-2013) was born on July 25, 1922 in Moline, IL. He served with the U.S. Navy during World War II. On Oct. 5, 1947, in nuptials held in East Moline, he was joined in matrimony with Ferne Griffin ( ? - ? ). Their marriage endured for an extraordinary 65 years. One daughter born to the couple was Kathy Frankwiak. The family resided in Port Byron, IL and held a membership in First United Methodist Church. Over the span of 42 years, he made a living as a tool-and-die maker for John Deere Harvester, and finally retired in 1983. He liked to fish, golf, hunt, tend his garden and work in the yard. He passed away at the age of 90 on March 9, 2013, as a patient in Genesis Medical Center, Illini Campus in Silvis, IL. The remains were lowered into eternal sleep in Greenview Memorial Gardens, with an obituary appearing in the Davenport (IA)  Quad-City Times

    Great-granddaughter Kathy Gaumer entered into marriage with Tony Frankowiak. They put down roots in Silvis, IL and produced two children, Kristin Keaschall and Gregory Frankowiak. 

Son Hugh Donald Gaumer (1889-1947) was born in about 1889. He married Esther Crowel ( ? - ? ). He relocated to California and in 1923-1945 was in San Francisco. He passed away in 1947 and his body placed into repose in Evergreen Cemetery in Fairfield. Esther's fate is not yet known.


~ Son Edward Gaumer ~

Son Edward Gaumer (1848- ? ) was born in about 1848 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County.

As with some of his siblings, he migrated to Iowa. He was in Iowa when named in a legal notice published in a March 1865 edition of the Somerset Herald and Whig in connection with the estate of his late parents.

Nothing more is known.


~ Son Simon Peter Gaumer ~

Son Simon Peter Gaumer (1848-1932) was born on June 3, 1848 in Wellersburg, Southampton Township, PA.

At some point in time he migrated to Iowa, settling in Victor, in Poweshiek or Iowa County. He is known to have been residing in Iowa when named in a legal notice published in a March 1865 edition of the Somerset Herald and Whig in connection with the estate of his late parents.

In about 1874, when he was 26 years of age, Simon married Amanda Manatt (May 1854- ? ), a native of Victor.

They produced three known daughters, Lura "Belle" Murvin, Vivian Maude Gaumer and one who died young.

In 1880, census records show that they dwelled in Victor.

By 1900, their home was in Des Moines, IA. There, Simon worked as a teamster (driver) for a transfer company, likely his longtime employer, Merchants Transfer Company. That year, 18-year-old Amanda F. Reed boarded in the home, and 53-year-old Albert Thurlow was a lodger.

With both daughters having married by 1910, the Gaumers shared a home with both couples in Des Moines in 1910, with Simon working as a freight overseer for a transfer business. By 1920, they and the Murvins moved to a new dwelling on 17th Street in Des Moines. Simon retired from Merchants Transfer in 1924 after having spent 33 years in the occupation.

Their address in the early 1930s was with their married daughter Vivian Maude Murvin at 961 West 26th Street in Des Moines.

Burdened with heart disease and senility, Simon passed away in 1932 at the age of 84. Son in law James R. Murvin filled out the death certificate. The remains were interred in Victor.

Daughter Lura "Belle" Gaumer (1875-1943) was born in June 1875 in Victor, Poweshiek County, IA. At the age of 24, unmarried, she lived with her parents in Des Moines but had no occupation. At about the age of 30, in 1907, she was joined in matrimony with James R. Murvin (1877- ? ). They are not believed to have reproduced. A native of Pennsylvania, James earned a living as a collector for a retail furniture firm. In 1910, Lura Bell and James shared a home with her married sister and brother in law and aged parents. The Murvins moved to a new home during the decade of the 1910s on 17th Street in Des Moines and continued to provide a residence for Belle's parents. In 1920, James continued his occupation as a collector for a Des Moines retail furniture business. In the 1940s, they remained in Des Moines at 961 26th Street. Toward the end of her life, Lura Belle was burdened with psychosis caused by a hardening of the arteries leading to her brain. She became a patient in died in Clarinda State Hospital. After a stay of a month and 29 days, she passed into eternity at the age of 65 on July 2, 1943. The remains were lowered into the sod of Des Moines Cemetery.

Daughter Vivian "Maude" Gaumer (1881- ? ) was born in May 1881 in Iowa. She earned a living at the age of 19 as a clerk in a Des Moines notions store. In about 1903, she was joined in marriage with John "Henry" Thompson (1881- ? ), a native of Ohio. The couple established a residence in Des Moines and took in Maude's parents and married sister and brother in law by 1910. The couple bore one known son, Merle E. Thompson. The federal census enumeration of 1910 shows Henry employed in Des Moines as a draper in a furniture store.

  • Grandson Merle E. Thompson (1906- ? ) was born in about 1906 in Des Moines. He was joined in the bonds of matrimony with Virginia ( ? - ? ). The coupe's only known daughter was Betty Jean Thompson.

~ Daughter Julia Ann Gaumer ~

Daughter Julia Ann Gaumer (1843-1917) was born on Nov. 29, 1843 in Southampton Township, Somerset County or in Bedford County, PA.

She did not learn to read or write, and during her long life she did not wed.

At some point she migrated to Iowa, where she made her home in Gilman, Marshall County.

The federal census enumeration of 1880 shows her in Gilman, working as a domestic servant at the age of 40 for Hibbard and Asa Sutherland.

By 1900, census records list her living independently in Greencastle, Marshall County. At that time, she earned a living as a wash woman.

She died in Gilman at the age of 73 on June 14, 1917. Burial was in Prairie View Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave]

Julia Ann has an entry in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD.


~ Daughter Lavina (Gaumer) Jordan ~

Daughter Lavina Gaumer (1852-1937) -- also spelled "Lavenia" -- was born on Aug. 20, 1852 or 1853 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County.

On Oct. 9, 1884, when she was 32 years of age, she married 54-year-old Samuel J. Jordan (1830- ? ), son of James and (?) (Burton) Jordan. The wedding was held in Victor, Iowa County, IA.

Samuel appears to have been married previously and brought at least one child to the union.

The couple did not reproduce.

Evidence suggests that Samuel died prior to 1900. Federal census records for the year 1900 list Lavenia in Victor, Hartford Township, Iowa County, IA, residing with a step-granddaughter, 13-year-old Effa Jordan.

Lavina was a tailoress and ran her own business. She retired in 1917 after many years of work.

Her home in the 1930s remained in Victor.

At the age of 84, the widowed Lavina suffered from senility. She was felled by acute cardiac failure and died on Nov. 4, 1937. Burial of the remains was in Victor. Bessie Gaumer of Fairfield was the informant for the official Iowa certificate of death.

The Jordans are listed in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD


~ Daughter Minerva Ophelia (Gaumer) Sage Stauffer Morse ~

Daughter Minerva Ophelia Gaumer (1855- ? ), also spelled "Manerva" -- was born in about July 1855 in or near Southampton Township, Somerset County, or just over the state line in Maryland, as she claimed during her lifetime.

At the age of nine, in 1864, she was rendered an orphan upon the death of her mother.

Minerva was named in a legal notice published in a March 1865 edition of the Somerset Herald and Whig in connection with the estate of her late parents. At some point in time she migrated to Iowa.

She was twice-wed. At the age of about 16, she married her first spouse, Canadian immigrant James Sage (1853-1892).

Together the pair bore two sons, Arthur Sage and Ellsworth Emerson Sage.

The United States Census enumeration of 1880 documents the Sages' residence in the village of Oxford, Johnson County, IA. James' occupation that year was as a miller. By 1885, after a relocation to Colorado, and now living in District 2 of Chaffee County, James earned a living as a ranch hand.

Sadly, James died on Oct. 25, 1892.

By the 1890s, Minerva and her sons had moved to Colorado, making a residence in Leadville, Lake County. The 1900 census shows her working as a servant performing "general housework" in the Leadville boarding house of divorcee Maud Roberts.

Minerva migrated between 1900 and 1910 to the Pacific Northwest, settling in Seattle, King County, WA.

When she was 55 years of age, on May 1, 1910, she wedded a second time to 53-year-old farmer David W. Stauffer (1857- ? ). Performing the nuptials was Rev. Charles A. Bowen of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Seattle, with Mabel H. Bowen and Annie Phelan serving as witnesses. Minerva fibbed on her marriage license that she was age 39. A native of Stoystown, Somerset County, PA, David was the son of George W. and Susanna (Meyers) Stauffer. At the time, David resided in Tukwila, King County, WA and worked as a house carpenter.

The Stauffer marriage ended eventually, but the details are lost. Minerva took back her first married name, "Sage."

Then on Nov. 24, 1928, she wedded a third time to William N. Morse (1881- ? ), a New York native who at the time was a resident of Snoqualmie Falls east of Seattle. Their ceremony was held at the King County Courthouse, with justice of the peace William Hoar presiding and M.T. Sherman and C.E. Carvin witnessing the event. On this marriage license, she spelled her name "Minerfa."


Snoqualmie Valley and Falls east of Seattle,  where William worked for a lumber mill in 1930. The falls pictured have a vertical drop of 268 feet.


The federal census of 1930 lists the Morses in Snoqualmie, on Silva Street, with William employed as a machinist in a lumber mill. Minerva continued to deceive in regard to her age, telling a census-taker that she was 52 instead of 75.

By 1940, the couple had moved to Lake City, King County, with William working as a carpenter in building construction.

Sadly, Minerva died on April 15, 1943. Burial of the remains was in Fall City Cemetery in King County.

William's fate after that is not yet known.

Son Arthur Sage (1877- ? ) was born in about 1877 in Iowa. Research is underway to determine if he is the same "Arthur Sage" who died in Dec. 1893 with burial in Evergreen Cemetery in Leadville, Lake County, CO.

Son Ellsworth Emerson Sage (1881-1970) was born on Feb. 17, 1881 in Iowa. He was of medium height and slender build in manhood, with light brown eyes and light brown hair. Evidence suggests that in 1910, he was joined in marriage with Daisy D. (1881- ? ), a native of Missouri. Their home in 1910 was in Leadville, Lake County, CO, with Ellsworth employed as a general mechanic in a zinc mill. By 1918, the couple had pulled up stakes and migrated to New Mexico, where Ellsworth obtained work in Gibson, McKinley County as a water service man in a mine of Gallup American Coal. During the 1910s, the Sages' marriage ended, and Ellsworth wedded again to Tennessee native Anna ( ? - ? ). They may have been the parents of a son Frank Sage, born in 1908 in Colorado. The 1920 federal census enumeration shows the family in Gibson, with Ellsworth's occupation shown as "plumber." The Sages again relocated during the 1920s to the West Coast, putting down roots in Los Angeles. Census records for 1930 show Ellsworth earning a living as a mechanic in an automobile repair shop, and son Frank as a technician in a radio store. With the nation in the grip of the Great Depression, Ellsworth changed jobs during the 1930s and by 1940 was a sheet metal worker in an aircraft works in Los Angeles. Ellsworth succumbed to death in Lassen County, CA on Nov. 10, 1970.

  • Grandson Frank Sage (1908-1972) was born on Nov. 25, 1908 in Colorado. He migrated with his parents to Los Angeles in the 1920s and in 1930, at age 22, was employed as a technician in a local radio store. He died in Ventura County, CA on Sept. 25, 1972.


~ Son James B. Gaumer ~

Son James B. Gaumer (1859-1906) was born on Sept. 4, 1857 or 1859, presumably in Southampton Township, Somerset County.

He migrated with his parents and older siblings to Iowa, settling in Fairfield, Jefferson County.

Circa 1880, when he was about 21 years of age, he married Ohio native Anna Viloma Bales (July 17, 1861-1915).

The Gaumers produced a brood of nine children, of whom six are known -- Nina Pence, G. Wesley "Wess"  Gaumer, Blanche Ora Gaumer, Oscar Cleveland "O.C." Gaumer, Harvey Gaumer and Viloma Gaumer.

When the federal census enumeration was made in 1900, the family was in Fairfield. James earned a living that year as a day laborer. By 1906, he worked locally in a railroad occupation. 

On the tragic day of March 13, 1906, at the age of 47, James was killed instantly at work when struck by a moving Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad freight train on the Burlington Northern tracks. The Muscatine (IA) Journal reported that the "accident occurred at about 11 o'clock when Gaumer was helping to push an empty car into position in front of the loading door of the Zeigler elevator. The switch engine shoved a string of empties on to the track catching Gaumer and killing him instantly." Funeral services were held in the Gaumer residence, officiated by Rev. Thomas Osborn. Burial of the remains was in Evergreen Cemetery in or near Fairfield.

Sanford Zeigler was named administrator of the estate and pursued legal action against the CB&Q. In May 1906, in a move in district court in Fairfield, he agreed to settle with the railroad for a payment of $2,000. 

The widowed Anna remained in Fairfield with her family of youngsters and was listed there in the 1910 census. She outlived her husband by nine years. She passed into eternity on April 9, 1915.

James and his family are described in the 1949 book, The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr., authored by Charles Byron Korns Sr., MD.

Daughter Nina Gaumer (1881- ? ) was born in 1881. She was wedded to Dr. J.W. Pence, MD. They put down roots in Columbus Junction, IA and were the parents of three -- John Pence, Cornelia "Nelia" Pence and William Pence.

  • Grandson John Pence (1898- ? ) was born in 1898. He married Nelle Routson ( ? - ? ). Their three offspring were Janelle Pence, Jacklyn Pence and John Pence Jr. The family dwelled in Red Oak, IA.
  • Granddaughter Cornelia "Nelia" Pence (1900- ? ) was born in 1900. She entered into wedlock with William Kent ( ? - ? ). Their home was in Columbus Junction, IA.
  • Grandson William Pence (1902- ? ) was born in 1902. He wedded Alma Kelley ( ? - ? ). The Pences established a residence in chicago.

Son G. Wesley "Wess" Gaumer (1883- ? ) was born in 1883. At the age of 16, in 1900, he worked at a cigar store in Fairfield. During the decade between 1900 and 1910, he became a pharmacist. He was unmarried in 1910 and lived at home at the age of 26. He was twice-married. The identity of his first bride is not known. Then on Jan. 15, 1920, at the age of 36, he was united a second time in the bonds of matrimony with 27-year-old E. Caryl Holt ( ? - ? ), a resident of Watertown, SD and the daughter of Charles A. and Anna M. (Hedman) Holt of Watertown. H.A. Anspach presided over the wedding in Fairfield, witnessed by Wesley's sister Nina Pence and sister-in-law Verda (Green) Gaumer. The couple lived in Fairfield.

Daughter Blanche Ora Gaumer (1885-1977)   was born in 1885. Her residence over the years was in Fairfield, IA. She did not marry. At the age of 24, in 1910, she was employed as a cashier in a dry goods store in Fairfield. She passed away on Feb. 7, 1977, and is buried with her parents and sister Viloma in Evergreen Cemetery.

Son Oscar Cleveland "O.C." Gaumer (1888- ? ) was born in 1888 in Fairfield. The federal census of 1910 shows him at age 21 unmarried and living with his widowed mother. His work at that time was as an watchmaker and engraver for a jeweler. On Aug. 7, 1911, at the age of 23, he was joined in holy wedlock with 23-year-old Verda Green ( ? - ? ) of Jefferson County and the daughter of Oran W. and Caroline (Hawk) Green. Rev. Thomas Osborn officiated the wedding, with E.P. Young and Flossie Green serving as witnesses. The pair lived in Fairfield and later in Des Moines. They are believed not to have reproduced. Oscar was employed for many years as an administrator in the Office of the Iowa Adjutant General, the state's senior military officer. They belonged to the Presbyterian Church. In about 1964, they retired to Seminole near Tampa, FL, making a home at 507 100th Way North. Sadly, at the age of 79, Oscar passed away on Dec. 27, 1967. An obituary appeared in the Tampa Tribune.  

Son Harvey Gaumer (1891- ? ) was born in 1891. He married Margaret Heine ( ? - ? ). Two daughters born to this couple were Betty Gaumer and Patricia Gaumer.

  • Granddaughter Betty Gaumer (1926- ? ) was born in 1926.
  • Granddaughter Patricia Gaumer (1928- ? ) was born in 1928.

Viloma's music collaboration with Johnny Marks, 1951 

Daughter Viloma Gaumer (1904- 1972) was born on Feb. 25, 1904 in Fairfield, Jefferson County, IA. She never married during her long life. As a girl in May 1915, she and her sister Blanche and brother O.C. Gaumer are known to have visited at the home of their brother-in-law and sister, Dr. J.W. and Nina (Gaumer) Pence in Muscatine, generating news in the gossip columns of the Muscatine Journal. She was a 1922 graduate of Fairfield High School. Demonstrating unusual musical talent on the keyboard, she played during her high school years, generating coverage in the May 27, 1921 edition of the Music News, a Chicago trade publication. After graduation, she studied pipe organ in Chicago in 1927 and at that time performed at a theatre in Downer's Grove, a community west of the Windy City. Reported the Theatre Organ trade publication, she "began her career as a pianist in local theatres [in Fairfield] before the arrival of sound movies. Who was then employed by major organ firms in Chicago and New York, selling the first organ to Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus which that organization used in its tent performances."

By February 1932, affiliated with the United Players Company, she accompanied vocalists with the St. Peter's Choir in a performance in Stevens Point, WI. More newspaper gossip places her in Chicago in November 1934 when again visiting the Pence residence in Muscatine. During the grip of the Great Depression, working for inventor Laurens "Larry" Hammond, she and he and colleague Louise Benke traveled to the Patent Office to demonstrate the instrument's uniqueness, so that it could be awarded legal protection. She held a membership in the Chicago Club of Woman Organists and often gave public programs on the Hammond. She is named in a web-based book, Hammond As In Organ: The Lauren Hammond Story.

She became more of a celebrity in 1951 after legendary composer Johnny Marks wrote the music and lyrics for the popular hit song, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer." Viloma was invited to prepare sheet music arrangement for "Rudoloph" adapted for the organ. The resulting printed product sold for 50 cents, with Viloma named in the lower left corner of the bright orange cover published by St. Nicholas Music Inc. of New York City. Circa 1962, Viloma and Walter Freed collaborated on the publication, How to Play Popular Piano Music on the Organ, published by Bregman, Vocco and Conn, Inc. She retired in 1967 and moved back to Fairfield . The same year, at the death of her brother Oscar, Viloma was named in his obituary in the Tampa (FL) Tribune. Also in 1967, she was featured in print advertisements in the Iowa City Press-Citizen when helping open the newly remodeled O'Brien Music Center at 109 East College Street, entertaining on a Conn Organ. She surrendered to the angel of death at age 68, in Fairfield, on Sept. 16, 1972. Her remains are asleep for the ages, with her parents and sister Blanche, in Evergreen Cemetery. An obituary was published in the June 1973 edition of Theatre Organ, the publication of the American Theatre Organ SocietyShe also is named in the 1949 book The Genealogy of Michael Korns Sr. of Somerset County, Pennsylvania, authored by Charles Byron Korns, and in J.R. Reiber's 1991 book The Reiber Genealogy: The Descendants of Jacob Reiber, the Immigrant Ancestor.


Copyright 2000, 2015-2018, 2020-2022 Mark A. Miner

  James Lundeen graciously has contributed content for this biography.