THE GERMAN LUTHERAN CHURCH
The German Lutheran Church was built adjacent to the Henry and Margaret Siemers farmhouse on County Road 61. Half of the land on which the church was built was given to the Church Association by Henry Siemers and the other portion was given by his neighbor John Abel. This was the church attended by Henry Siemers and his family and it was serviced by various ministers from the area. One of the ministers was Rev. Henry Schulz of the Trinity Lutheran Church in Faribault. He would drive out by horse and buggy to conduct services in the church, as well as churches located in Webster and Morristown.
Sometime in the 1950’s the church was sold, torn down, and the ground leveled. The land was reverted to Leonard Dalby, the present owner of the former Henry Siemers’ farm, and also his neighbor who owned the other portion of the land.
THE GERMAN UNION CEMETERY
The German Union Cemetery is located on County Road 61, just a short distance from the former farmhouse of Henry Siemers and is located on the boundary of the Henry Siemers and John Evert property. The date of the cemetery is November 1891, which was the month and year that Margaret Siemers’ mother died. She was interred in this cemetery in an unmarked grave. It is believed that her burial was the first in the cemetery and was perhaps the reason for starting the German Union Cemetery on the Siemers’ property. The deed shows that Henry Siemers deeded the land in 1893 to the Cemetery Association. The country cemetery was re-activated in 1968 and is well kept. **These histories are written in the book mentioned above. There were burials in the cemetery prior to 1891, as stones show—the Abel children, three in 1880, after a diphtheria epidemic, one in 1885, with spinabifida…and those other families.
Family memories of Irene Beyer Christensen who grew up next to the church and attended District #61 school and the church are as follows: Irene’s mother was Emma Abel Beyer, daughter of John Abel and wife of Charles Beyer, who also owned adjoining land. (Written September 1999 – Irene is 92 years old.)
Attended by Beyers, Abels, Siemers, Fischers and others. The church was used as a farm building prior to being torn down. When torn down, the lumber was taken by area farmers and used for their buildings.
Irene remembers an older cemetery several miles to the southeast in some woods, possibly on a Demann or Hirdler farm. Farmers who purchased the land plowed up the cemetery and one stone was brought to the current cemetery. Irene thought the stone belonged to a Demann family member.
Grace Ludwig Day has given this information:
The church was called St. Johns. It was shared, possibly on alternate Sundays by the German
Lutherans and the American Sunday Sunday_School Union. A Mr. Art M. Hamann led the Sunday school meetings and also a Rev. Staph who came by horse and buggy. At one time, Grace and her sister Irene Ludwig Younkers taught Sunday school.
The older cemetery was plowed up by Albert Smisek. The stones were put under his granary. One stone was recovered, that of August Demann, which was moved to the German Union Cemetery. There also was a small family cemetery on the line of the school property (to the south) and the Meehl farm. Grace had been told that three small Meehl girls had been buried there in unmarked graves. Grace thought that the name of the German Union Cemetery might have come from the church also being used by the American Sunday School Union. The older cemetery was on the August Demann farm southeast of the current cemetery, then owned later by Smisek. There were two hills along the road and the cemetery was on top of one of them.