01 November 2010

Ancestor Biography: Otto August Fredrick

My grandfather, Otto August Fredrick, was born 132 years ago, today, 1 November 1878, in Manistee, Manistee, Michigan.  He was the second of eight children born to Johann August Fredrick and Louise Fredricke Zastrow.  Otto's brothers and sisters were:
  • Emma A. (1876) married J.B. Chalmers
  • Mary H. (1884) married John Bruce
  • William L. (1890)
  • Alma (1893)
  • Leonard 'Sonny' (1897)
  • Leonia (1897-1899)
  • Augusta 'Gustie' (?) married Herman Breen
The first census that Otto can be found in is the 1880 U.S. Federal Census Record for Manistee, Manistee, Michigan.  The quality of this page is too poor to read.  Other census's I have found Otto in are the 1900, 1920, and 1930 ones.

Eventually, Otto's parents moved the family to a farm on Coates Highway in Brethren, Michigan.  Otto around 1918-1919 bought the farm from his father.  The farm is still in the family today. 

Otto August Fredrick and Daisy Ellen Graf were married 12 December 1917 in Brethren, Manistee, Michigan.  Their marriage record, certificate number 6318 1/2, can be found in Michigan Marriages 1868-1925 at pilot.familysearch.org. 

Daisy and Otto Fredrick had 11 children:

  1. Kathryn Louise (1918-)
  2. Lola Mae (1920-)
  3. Daisy Marie (1921-2004)
  4. Otto Robert (1923-1997)
  5. Richard Lewis (1925-)
  6. Leona Inez (1926-1996)
  7. John Leonard (1929-)
  8. Audrey Jane (1930-)
  9. Ray Edwin (1932-2001)
  10. Norman Eugene (1934-1995)
  11. Norma Jean (1934-)

Otto August Fredrick registered for the World War I draft on 12 September 1918 at the age of 39.  Otto listed his occupation as a farmer.  Other occupations held by Otto included a sawmill worker and a sailor on the Great Lakes, for 14 years. 

I looked for a picture of my grandfather and I and couldn't find one.  My grandfather was 79 years old when I was born.  I do remember thinking he was old when I was younger.  I remember him being a little grouchy.  He wasn't one for hugs or warm fuzzies.  At a Fredrick family reunion one year, they did a Fredricks Trivia.  One of the questions asked was "When remembering Otto, what single personality trait comes to your mind?
The answer was 'ornery'.  (Yikes!!)

Otto August Fredrick died of old age on 5 February 1968, at the age of 89.  He is buried at Brethren Cemetery, Brethren, Michigan. 

The 11 February 1968 Trinity Lutheran Church, Onekema, Michigan  Sunday Bulletin announced his death.

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