16 March 2015

Matrilineal Monday: Who was Catharine Eckman

By dumb luck, while searching for something interesting for the On This Day post, I found the death notice for a Mrs. Catharine Eckman. So who was she? I know she is not a direct lineal relation, that she is instead a collateral relative. But what Eckman did she marry and how do I find her? 

Her death notice reads:
Eckman – In Strasburg, on March 15, 1880, Mrs. Catharine Eckman, aged 91 years, 7 months and 15 days. Her relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend the funeral from her late residence, No. 91 East Main street, on Thursday morning, at 10 o’clock. Funeral services at Longenecker’s meeting house, at 11 o’clock. 

From that, I know that she was born about 1789. I know her exact death date (15 March 1880) and her residence. 

I searched the newspaper for the 15th and found her actual obituary! It notes that she was the widow of Jacob Eckman, late of Lancaster City. She lived in the Borough of Strasburg. It also notes that she has 10 children. She had five boys and five girls. The oldest son Issac had already passed.

The Mortality Schedule notes that Catharine Eckman was a widowed white woman, born about 1780. She was 91 when she died in March 1880 of Old Age in Strasburg, Lancaster County. 

The “Gerberich Collection - Gravestone Inscriptions” offers more clues as to who she was. Catharine is buried at the Longenecker’s Mennonite Church in West Lampeter Township, located on the road from Strasburg to Millport. Her birth date is provided as 31 July 1788 and her death is confirmed as 15 March 1880. She is listed as “wife of Jacob”. Jacob Eckman was born 9 April 1786 and died 13 January 1858. 

At this time, I have not been able to confirm Catharine’s parents or even her maiden name. A Jacob and Catharine Eckman are living in nearby Bart Township in the 1850 Census. A 20 year old Esther Eckman and six year old Fanny Groff reside with them. However, I cannot yet confirm this is the same Jacob and Catharine – yet! 

Historical Society of Pennsylvania; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Collection Name: Historic Pennsylvania Church and Town Records 

Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 16 March 1880. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

United States. Non-Population Census Schedules for Pennsylvania, 1850-1880: Mortality. M1838, 11 rolls. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. 

Matrilineal Monday is a genealogical prompt of GeneaBloggers. 
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015
Locations listed are located in Pennsylvania (USA), unless otherwise noted in post.