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California Genealogy and History Archives


Franz Heinrich Wedderien

Listed as "Frank H. Wederin" (1822-1860) in some Yuba records.]

Marysville newspaper articles relating to the death of Franz Heinrich Wedderien, who was born 1822 in Braunschweig, Germany and died Aug. 29, 1860 in Yuba County, California. Franz Wedderien made his living, at least in part, as a tailor. He was married to Louisa Emilia Zimmer, who was born Nov. 16, 1819 in Berlin and died Oct. 21, 1905 in Oakland, California. The Wedderiens immigrated to America in 1852, leaving from the port of Hamburg and arriving in New York on Sept. 24, 1852 with their infant son, Franz Heinrich Wedderien. They lived for a short time in Hartford, Connecticut, where they had two more sons, before moving to Marysville in the late 1850’s. A daughter, Louisa Emilia Wedderien, was born in Marysville in 1860. She was just 5 months old when her father died; her three older brothers were 3, 5 and 8 years old. 

Daily National Democrat, Thursday morning, Aug. 30, 1860:

Shot Himself.-–A man named Wedterin, a German, accidentally shot himself, yesterday, in a boat on Feather river, near Judge Bliss’s residence. He was rowing about, hunting, and, in drawing his gun towards him, one of the barrels went off and emptied its contents into his side. Uncle Ben Green, who was on shore, went to his assistance immediately, the water being shallow, and, obtaining assistance, conveyed him to his (Wedterin’s) house, near the Hospital. He died in a few hours. Wedterin was an honest, hard-working man, with a wife and four children, and made his living by selling wood and raising chickens. His death is a serious loss to his little family. 

Daily Appeal, Thursday morning, Aug. 30, 1860:

Man shot.---A man was shot in Sutter county, yesterday, near Wood’s ranch, while sailing on Feather river. He was shot by some person from the bank, but whether designedly or accidentally we could not learn. His brother, a German, came to the city for Dr. Teed.

Since the above was written, we learn that the person shot bore the name of Vedderin, and that the shooting resulted form the accidental discharge of his own rifle which lay among some brush in the bottom of the boat. The ball entered at the pit of Vedderin’s stomach, and passing through lodged under the skin of the left side. He died in about an hour after the occurrence. Deceased was 45 years old. He leaves a wife and four children, whose grief over his sudden and fearful demise was painful to behold. His home is only half a mile from the city, in the direction of the hospital. 

Daily Appeal, Aug. 30, 1860:

Funeral.---The friends of the late Franz Wedderin are requested to attend his funeral, from his family residence, this afternoon at 4 o’clock.

(Click on photos for larger view)
wedderien-family.jpg (30176 bytes) William Albert and Mary Josephine Wedderien with their oldest two children, William Elmore and Hazel Agnes. 

I don't know if the photo was taken in a studio in Marysville or Oakland (they lived there for sometime in the 1880's and possibly into the 1890's). Hazel Agnes later competed on the very early rodeo circuit under her married name, Hazel Agnes Walker. She was a saddle bronc rider and a trick rider in the early 1900s! William Albert Wedderien and Mary Josephine Wedderien ran the Jersey Dairy in the Marysville area in the early 1900s.
wedderien-pennington-marriage-cert.jpg (160461 bytes) Marriage certificate of W.A. Wedderin & Mary J. Pennington
wedderien-pennington-marriage lic.jpg (173291 bytes) Marriage license of Wedderin-Pennington


Information and photos provided by Kim Nead. Please contact Kim for more info.