|The Peter Metzger family|
|Monday, April 11, 2011 5:37 AM|
The Metzger Family of Delphos and Fort Jennings has a large three ring binder of their family history. This beautiful book, which was compiled by Kelly Fields, contains pictures, birth certificates, obituaries, newspaper articles and more.
It all started with Peter Metzger, who came to America in 1896. Peter was born 3 September 1851 in Nitzkydorf, Hungary to George Metzger and Veronica Zimmerman Metzger. They were both born in Germany.
George Metzger, the father of Peter, moved from Germany to Austria to avoid conscription in the Army. Many young men emigrated to America years ago for that same reason.
In the 1890’s Eva (Rastadter) Metzger owned a flour mill and Peter Metzger was a farmer. They were unhappy in Nitzkydorf, Hungary because all their boys would have to go into the Army and they didn’t want them to go.
Kelly Fields, the granddaughter of Carl and Milly and author of the family history gave the following account:
Kelly continues: “In the autumn of 1896 he returned to Hungary for his family. He sold his farm but kept the mill in case things didn’t work out in America. He sent his two oldest boys, Matt and Martin, who were teenagers ahead to get the farm ready. A few months later, in the spring of 1897 the family left Europe and came to Philadelphia and then to Delphos to settle on the farm northeast of Delphos. It took three weeks to cross on the boat each way. His wife, Eva, got very sick on the way to America and never went back to Hungary. They lived in a hotel in Delphos until the farm was vacated.” Most of the Metzger children were born in Europe. Catherine and John were born in Ohio. After all the moving the Metzger families had done to get out of the wars, Peter had two sons in the U.S. Army during World War I. If the war had lasted another six months, he would have had another son in the war.
When the Metzger family moved to the farm, there was a house with four rooms – two up and two down. Shortly after they moved Peter built what was known as the living room and the boy’s room. They had a separate building outside, known as the summer kitchen. This was common on many farmsteads. The women did the cooking and canning in the summer kitchen to keep that extra heat out of house. In 1917, Peter added on the kitchen and pantry and put in a basement. Years later, John Metzger made a bathroom out of the pantry.
Peter returned to Hungary once or twice. “When Peter had to pay the taxes on his farm, he had to go to Ottawa, Ohio, the county seat. He would follow the railroad tracks and it would be quite a journey.”
Kelly continues: “A couple of stories about the war have been told. The first was when Peter went off to war in Hungary, his mother-in-law gave him a prayer book as he was leaving town for the war. He kept this prayer book in his pocket. One day he could feel the bullets whizzing past him and felt fortunate that he was not hit. Later he pulled his prayer book out and found a bullet had nearly pierced it, saving his life. The other war story was that Peter’s company had been without food for four days of marching. They came upon a garden, the only edible thing being onions. He hated onions, but ate them that day. He always liked them after that.”
Kelly related another story: “Peter liked to drink beer and would go uptown to the bar and drink. He would talk of the war. People thought he was against America, so they went to his house with sticks. On 3 May 1918, Peter was going to be white capped, but never was. Katie Allemeier (his daughter) hit one of the men with a stick and left a mark on his head that was there until he died. This was a separate incident from the first white capping that happened in 1897 in which the article was printed in the Delphos Herald. Peter was in a Nursing home in Findlay when he died. They brought him back to his house for the funeral. Someone would sit up with him in the casket with it open all night.” Kelly mentioned that John was 23 years old and that Carl was six months old when Peter died.
|Last Updated on Tuesday, November 06, 2012 3:21 PM|