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Friday, February 12, 2016

True Friendship, with Honor and Integrity!

True Friendship, with Honor and Integrity!


       Imagine you alive back in 1840.  You were new to this country immigrating to a strange new land only 4 short years ago.  You don't speak the language very well, but thankfully you live in a community of others from your country, who may have even come over on the same ship you did.

courtesy of The Ohio Repository Feb 20, 1840, page 3
      These first few years are rough going, with illness and misfortune all around.  But you and many friends and neighbors survive!!!  You have a home, a church you are active in, and are making a go at life in this new land, until......

This story is about  Mr. George Henry Kornmann (also seen as Kormann), a neighbor and good friend of my 3X great grandfather, Jacob Dibi.   George was out cleaning out his well, it is unclear if he was digging a new well, or in the well doing repairs, but none the less, he was down in the well.  One of the planks that held the earth in place was damaged and George tried to fix it.  Unfortunately the wall collapsed in on George, and he was buried alive in his own well.  How scary would that have been to be doing a task and then "poof" you are being buried alive!!! What was he thinking at that exact moment?  Were his thoughts of his beloved wife and 2 children? his church? perhaps his family back in Germany that he would never see again?  We unfortunately will never know......

Now George could have remained in that horrible death trap, but he didn't...he lived in a community of people who cared about their neighbors...for 5 days --yes FIVE days, 100 men worked day and night, to dig George out of his well.  ON that last day even the most courageous of men wouldn't dig any further into the well, except one, my 3 X great grand father!!!!

The paper stated an "old German, an elder of the church, and intimate friend of the buried man named Jacob Dibi" decided not to stop until his friend had been taken out of the well. Jacob and an unnamed teen boy of 17  continued to dig Saturday into Sunday afternoon.  Around 2 pm George was pulled from his well.    He was buried the next day

German Evangelical Protestant church from 1839-1868
Two pastors spoke that day, a Reverend Warner from the Presbyterian church at George's home (spoken in English) and Reverend Dr. J. G. Buettner, pastor of the German Evangelical Protestant church, spoke in German.   George was an elder at the German Church along with  Jacob, who  actually helped build that church, which is still standing today.

George was 41 years old.

My heart fills with pride as I read this article about Jacob not giving up to recover his friend, but then it breaks knowing a man lost his life, a wife lost her husband, and 2 children lost their father that day....

When times are tough; it is my 3X great grandfather pushing me forward, telling me to keep going....

Friday, February 5, 2016

The First DEBE Family in OHIO

These are my 3 x great grandparents Jacob and Margaret Debe.  The spelling has varied and seen as DIBBI, DIPPI, DIPI, DIBBE, but It is now DEBE.


Jacob Debe

Margurite Gise Debe

Here's a great story behind how I got these images:

Located in Massillon Ohio Cemetery. 

When I got the location if his grave, I parked near the section, and started to count back to the row he was reported to be in.  1...2...3...4...5.....10...11 and BAM!!! I was at the fence.  Where were the rest of the rows???

My daughter and I wandered aimlessly looking for this Tombstone. We found ROHR, KOONTZ, KING, SNYDER; all family via this man's daughters...but no Jacob.

So We started getting cold and needed a drink so we started walking back towards the car, when I stopped and spoke to my grandfather....

I said : Alright DEBE!!!!! we drove all this way to visit you, and you are hiding.  I need you to STAND UP and wave to me, as I cant seem to find you!!!

Well my daughter asked what i was doing, so I told her, I need help finding him so I'm asking him to help. She rolled her eyes as most teens do, and turned to go to the car

We got back to the car, put on jackets, and got a drink and when I turned around to start my search again...there he stood in all his glory right in my path!!!

The rows started at the fence, and I had totally missed him as I was focused on counting, 1...2...3....

So next time you are looking for someone--address them directly, and who knows what will happen!