Ferdinand Erdmann (1850-1912) was a woodworker as indicated by the beautiful carving of his trade tools at the top of this headstone. He and Sophia (Ebert – 1849-1941) married in 1881 and had two children, though they had left home by 1900 so are difficult to track beyond Sophia’s answer on that census. In a rare instance of having the cause of death, it is quite a difficult one. Ferdinand suffered from diabetes which I believe was untreatable in that era but died of complications from appendicitis.

Sophia remarried in 1917 to Maurice Harmon (1861-1938) – an Irish immigrant and Catholic from County Kerry who’d come to Chicago by way of Canada. They had just over 20 years together before he, too, died. He is buried at St. Mary’s. His first wife, Catherine, had died quite young in 1902, and she is buried at Calvary. She and Maurice had eight children (6 surviving to adulthood). It’s unclear why they were not interred together or even at the same cemetery, but this may have been a financial issue and a matter of purchasing single lots as-needed.

Sophia lived another 3 years, reaching the age of 91. She was living alone in 1940 so one hopes hers was a robust old age. Upon her death, she joined her first husband at Concordia and is buried under that surname.

RIPĀ Erdmann-Harmons

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