Name: Johann Wilhelm Heinrich Meyer
Birth: 20 NOV 1859 in Quernheim by 1, Hannover, Germany 1
Death: 22 MAR 1905 in Witting, Lavaca County, Texas of Suicide (by hanging)
Burial: Moulton, Lavaca Co., TX
Education: Some elementary school
Immigration: 1860 Bremen to Galveston to Frelsburg
His godparents at his 4 December 1859 baptism in Lemförde were Dietrich Heinrich Wilhelm Schwake of Quernheim (his father's landlord and employer), Johann Dietrich Meyer of Brockum (his father's brother), and Georg Friedrich Heinrich Buck of Stemshorn (his mother's uncle).
He immigrated as an infant with his parents on the ship Weser in 1860, which departed Bremen on 20 September and arrived at Galveston on 23 November. Also on the Weser were his future parents-in-law, Henrietta Köster and Friedrich Priesmeyer. This confirms a family story related by Ottilia Meyer that her four grandparents had immigrated on the same ship. (Source: E.H. Geue, New Homes in a New Land, which captures the small number of otherwise lost passenger lists that were printed in German language newspapers in Texas.) In the ship's records, he is "Henry."
In the 1870 census he is listed as Henry and is living with his parents in Frelsberg.
In the 1880 census he is listed as Heinrich and is living with his parents in Frelsberg. He is described as as a farm laborer.
Judging from birth records of his children, by 1885 he had moved to the Moulton area.
In the 1900 census, he reports himself as Henry F. Meyer. He is living in Precinct 6 of Lavaca County (probably Baursville/Moulton).
Handwritten note from Ottilia Meyer (a story probably told to her by her mother): "When Dora [born 9/1891] was a baby a terrible thing happened while Papa [Henry Meyer] was out buying cattle. Papa owned a meat market. Momma's brother [Henry Priesmeyer, born 7/9/1869] was staying with them and worked there. They needed meat in the market, so Henry Priesmeyer got one of the yearlings and killed it, but it did not have Papa's brand on it. Momma helped him. The calf belonged to a man named Dockrie [Dougherty?]. So Papa was sent to prison for it. But he knew nothing of it until he came looking for the hide, since he bought hides and salted them down to sell. But when Gramma Priesmeyer [Henrietta Köster] died, the (unreadable word: dossier?) they had for Momma's brother Henry was paid with his inheritance to keep him from going to prison. This was in 1916, January 30. This is how it was."
Death: he was found hanged in a pasture "near Witting" (Lavaca Co) Texas, presumed to be a suicide.
An obituary in the Shiner Gazette of 3/23/1905 reads: "Word was brought to town last evening that a man had hanged himself near Witting, a village about 10 miles from here. Sheriff Noble and Justice Townsend went to the place and found the body of Henry Meyer hanging from a tree in a small pasture close to Witting. The dead man's horse was tied to the fence close by, in the road. The deed was committed within a short distance of the store at Witting. From the evidence taken at the inquest, it was the judgement of the Justice that Meyer had committed suicide. He is a farmer and lived between Witting and Moulton, but was temporarily engaged in buying cattle. He leaves a family."
Father: Friedrich Heinrich Meyer b: 28 FEB 1830 in Brockum (99), Hannover, Germany
Mother: Charlotte Christine Buck b: 18 DEC 1833 in Quernheim by 6, Hannover, Germany
Henrietta Sophia Dorothea Priesmeyer b: 1 MAR 1862 in Frelsburg, Colorado County, Texas
30 OCT 1884
in Frelsburg, Colorado County, Texas
- Note: Source: copy of marriage license from Colorado County records, volume F, page 388. Married by F. Gerstmann, Minister.
- Charlotta Henrietta Louisa Meyer b: 26 JUN 1885 in Frelsburg, Colorado County, Texas
- Elo Heinrich Friedrich Meyer b: 3 APR 1888 in By Witting, Lavaca County, Texas
- Lee Johann Friedrich Meyer b: 21 DEC 1889 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Dorothea Johanna Henrietta Meyer b: 12 SEP 1891 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Viola Bertha Meyer b: 19 AUG 1895 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Wilhelmina Henrietta Meyer b: 19 AUG 1895 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Ottilie Auguste Meyer b: 5 SEP 1898 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Johann Meyer b: 24 JUL 1901 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Henrietta Ida Meyer b: 19 DEC 1903 in Moulton, Lavaca County, Texas
- Title: z Churchbook of Lemförde Parish, Hannover (Niedersachsen), Germany (on line at Archion.de)