Wednesday, January 04, 2012

All in the Family: John Arthur Heffner

Born September 1, 1867 in Watsontown, Pennsylvania, John Arthur Heffner was the fourth child of John Sylvestor Heffner and his wife Mary Elizabeth Watts. It appears there were nine children born to this union, but the only sibling names I have been able to come up with in my research are George W., Lillie, Thomas M., John Arthur, and a younger sister names Goldie. Much research needs to be done yet on this family it seems.

John married Meribah Webb June 18, 1889 in Elwood, Indiana. They were the parents of three children, Lewis Orvil, Ethel Rose, and Herbert Arthur Heffner. The 1900 census shows that Meribah went by the nickname of Mollie, and the lived at 1126 S. K Street in Elwood.

During an economic depression, John and Mollie placed the children into the Soldier’s and Sailor’s Children’s Home in Knightstown, Indiana. Ethel and Herb were “adopted” by a family from Hancock’s Chapel, Indiana. Lew ran away to join the carnival as a carpenter. Eventually they were all reunited when Lew, as an adult, located where his siblings had been taken and moved his wife and daughters there to be closer to them.

John was a carpenter and did fine woodworking. He often traveled to Ohio for work, eventually settling in Hamilton, after he and Mollie divorced. Hamilton was a manufacturing town, with available jobs in John’s field of expertise.

John married a second time, to Anna Teeters, who my mother called Grandma Annie. No children came from this union.

John died May 8, 1938 in Covington, Kentucky. He was buried in the Evergreen Cemetery. Both of his wives outlived him by many years, Annie passing away in 1847 and Meribah dying in 1953. John’s body was move to the Evergreen Cemetery in 1847 to be with Annie’s body.

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