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Adam and Amelia Weber:

A Story of Happiness and Tragedy

     Adam and Amelia (Micol) Weber, our immigrant ancestors from Germany, are a couple whose lives are very intriguing, sometimes tragic.  As the research reveals additional details, their story becomes even more compelling.

      Perhaps Adam and Amelia’s reason for leaving Germany to come to the growing city of Indianapolis was similar to many other of their countrymen and women, that being the poor state of economics and the bleak outlook for their family's future.

     We know little about Adam's occupation in his early years in Germany, but records indicate that in Indianapolis he  was a laborer, once working for Ittenbach Stone Company, a south side German American establishment.  Adam’s service in the Civil War at 44 years old and his tragic death on the railroad tracks in his south side neighborhood, along with the premature deaths of four of their five children are a few of the intriguing scenarios that bring the picture of this couple’s life into focus.

  Following is a timeline of the story, as we know it so far. 

bulletAdam Weber was born in 1821 in Mainz, Prussia, which later became a part of Germany.  The record of this is in his civil war enlistment records and in his marriage record now in my family history files.
bulletAmelia Micol was born in 1833 in Vilbel, a small town just north of Frankfurt in southern Germany (then Prussia).  The 1870 census and her marriage record document her place of birth.
bulletAdam and Amelia married on May 12, 1856, in the Catholic Church in Vilbel, Germany.  We have a copy of the marriage record stating that they received a dispensation from the church as well as legal permission to marry, since they were second cousins.  Amelia’s mother’s name was Juliana Weber.

Their census records indicate that they emigrated in 1857 and Indianapolis directories list their homes on South Delaware for 15 to 20 years.

bulletAdam and Amelia’s first child, Henry Adam, was is born in Indianapolis in 1859 and baptized in St. Mary’s Catholic Church, confirmed through church records.  The family grew to seven with the addition of a daughter Amelia in 1862 and sons Theodore, Franz and Herman, in 1864, 1870 and 1872.
bulletAmelia and Adam lost their son Franz at a year old in 1871. Then tragedy struck again in 1876 when daughter Amelia and son Herman, at ages 14 and 4, fell victim just one month apart to the diphtheria epidemic.  In 1896 their 32-year-old son Theodore died of tuberculosis.  Harry Adam was the only member of the family to carry on the family line. (His twelve children have resulted in a considerably large Weber family.)

 Adam enlisted in the U. S.  Army in 1865, in the last part of the Civil War.  He served with the 143rd Regiment, Indiana Infantry.  He was promoted from private to sergeant only about a week after he was inducted.  The National Archives records outline this piece of family history. 

bulletThe couple lived in Indianapolis from the time they immigrated in 1857, until his death in 1873.  Adam was “run over and killed by a Central Railroad engine at Noble Street in Indianapolis March 4, 1873.”   There was a coroner’s inquest stating the verdict of death to be by accident.

 Amelia applied for and received a civil war widow’s pension in 1890.  She had been surviving as a dressmaker until this time, while living with her sons Theodore and Henry (Harry) Adam.

bulletAt the time of the 1900 U. S. census, Amelia is living with her only surviving child, Harry, at 533 South Alabama Street. 

Amelia died in Indianapolis in 1913.  By that time she had 12 grandchildren and lived in the home with them all.  In fact she died just two months after her grandson, Harry Lawrence married Otillia Kuhn, grandparents to us all.

Page 2:  Harry Weber's Family Story