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Karl Seitz





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My direct Darke County connections encompass two generations and part of the childhood of a third. Although there are still cousins of varying distance in the Darke County area, my last direct family connection ended with the death of my great-grandmother, Anna Elizabeth KERLIN Seitz, in Greenville in 1918.

My great-great grandfather, William Kendrick KERLIN was born March 2, 1832, near Richmond, Ind. He died April 28, 1903, in Greenville, Ohio. William was a farmer in Wayne County, Ind., until 1865 when he moved to Harrison township, Darke County. He continued farming until 1870 when he moved to Greenville. He was elected justice of peace and appointed deputy county treasurer, serving four years, while living in Harrison township. In 1874, William was elected Darke County treasurer, and he was re-elected in 1876. Back then, the treasurer was paid based on a percentage of the taxes he collected. Family tradition is that he built his fortune by collected back taxes owed by the railroads. He was a stock dealer and money lender after leaving office.

In 1883, William K. KERLIN was the chief founder and stockholder of Second National Bank of Greenville. He was elected president and ran the bank until resigning in January 1900 due to failing health.

My great-great grandmother, Hannah Bennett JEFFERIS, was born Nov 28, 1830 in Wayne County, Ind. She died April 10, 1909, in Greenville, Ohio. Hannah married William Kendrick KERLIN Dec. 1, 1853, in Wayne County, Ind.

Another great-great grandmother, Catherine BEERY Seitz, moved to Greenville from Fairfield County, Ohio, after the 1864 death of husband, Daniel SEITZ (1791-1864). At least two of her children, George Washington SEITZ (1841-1945) and Enoch Beery SEITZ, accompanied her. It's not clear exactly when Catherine left Greenville, but it may have been about 1879 when her son Enoch took a job in Missouri. She initially went to stay with a daughter in Putnam County, Ohio, but then went to live with Enoch in Kirksville, Mo. After his death in 1883, she returned to the home of her daughter, Sophrona SEITZ Blosser, in Putnam County. Catherine was born April 11, 1808, in Fairfield County, Ohio. She died Feb. 2, 1904, in Putnam County.

Enoch Beery SEITZ was born Aug. 24, 1846, near Bremen, Fairfield County, Ohio. He died of typhoid fever Oct. 8, 1883, in Kirksville, Mo. He is buried in Greenville. Enoch was a self-taught mathematician of such ability that in 1880 he became only the fifth American elected to the Mathematical Society of London. From 1872 to 1879, Enoch held the chair of mathematics at Greenville High School and may have served as principal during part of this period. In 1879 he became professor of mathematics at the state Normal School in Kirksville, Mo. At the time of his death he had been chosen to be head of the math department at the University of Texas. Enoch married Anna Elizabeth KERLIN June 24, 1875. They had four sons. The oldest, Raymond, was born in Greenville. The others were born in Kirksville, although all lived in Greenville for a while after their father's death. The third son, Clarence, died shortly before his fifth birthday in Greenville and is buried beside his parents. The youngest son, Enoch Beery SEITZ Jr., my grandfather, was born only a few months before his father's death.

Anna Elizabeth KERLIN was born Oct. 27, 1854, a few miles north of Richmond, Ind. She died Feb. 19, 1918, in Greenville. She is the second of the 11 children of William Kendrick KERLIN and Hannah JEFFERIS.Anna taught in the Greenville schools from 1872 to June 1875 when she married Enoch. Following Enoch's death, she and her four sons returned to Greenville where she taught for nine more years. In 1894, she returned to Kirksville and taught at the Normal School until 1898, serving as principal or supervisor of its training or demonstration school. During this time or shortly thereafter, each of her three surviving sons began attending the normal school. Two of them graduated from the school. The third may have transferred to the University of Missouri. Anna graduated from the Columbian School of Osteopathy, which is in Kirksville, in 1899. She practiced in Richmond, Ind., Cape Girardeau, Mo., and Phoenix, Ariz. Early in 1904, she completed a post-graduate course at American School of Osteopathy, also located in Kirksville. In February 1904, she returned to Greenville where she set up practice as the only female osteopathic practitioner in the county. She continued that practice until her death.

Copyright 2001 Laura M. Drake and Karl Seitz

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