AND BAUER FAMILIES
Submitted by Mary Carabin
Huron County First Family Member #6
The Carabin family had lived in Lutzelbourg, Lorraine, France for at least 150 years prior to Joseph coming to America. The Bauer family originated from the nearby town of Phalsbourg.
In 1828 a group from Lutzelbourg/Phalsbourg area traveled to the port of LeHavre a distance of nearly 400 miles. They set sail to America on 16 August 1828 in the packet ship, Henri IV, with a total of 110 people aboard arriving in New York City on 2 October 1828.
The party consisted of the families of Joseph and Katharina (Bauer) Carabin and Peter and Veronica (Carabin) Bauer, Sr. Francisca Bauer, a sister of Peter and Katharina, and Clement Baumgartner, a single man. Also accompanying the party as far as New York was another related family by the name of Koechle. The Phillips family, which history relates came with this party, is not listed.
It is unknown if they brought the wagons they used on this journey with them to America. Usually there was not enough room in the small ships, but it is believed they possibly did. History describes the wagons they were using when they came into Norwalk, Ohio, as “queer looking”. The European-type wagons during that time period were brightly painted, or they could have been large two wheeled carts.
After arriving in New York on 2 October 1828, the party journeyed to the Erie Canal at Albany, New York, possibly via the Hudson River. For the trip to Buffalo, New York, they boarded a boat pulled by mules on the newly constructed 363-mile Erie Canal that had just opened in 1825. Travel on the canal was very slow as the travel speed was about a mile and a half per hour. At Buffalo, they boarded another boat for the trip on Lake Erie. They most likely disembarked at the port of Huron, Ohio.
From there they traveled by wagon to Norwalk where the recorded history begins. Reverend F. Rupert in his historical account of area churches wrote the following account. “On a fall evening in 1828, just as the sun was setting, there came into Norwalk, along the East Main Street road, two queer looking wagons, each drawn by a yoke of oxen. They drove into a livery barn and put up their cattle for the night directly opposite the Williams mansion (now the theater area). Each wagon contained two families. Peter Bauer and Anton Phillips families occupied one wagon; the other belonged to Joseph Carabin and Clement Baumgartner. Peter Bauer had six children and Joseph Carabin, eight children. Early on the following morning the party left Norwalk and proceeded in the direction toward Cincinnati, where they expected to meet friends. All went well as far as Vredenburgh, which was then the name of Peru area. At this place the Carabin wagon broke down beyond the hope of repair. It was impossible for the Carabin party to proceed farther, after some deliberation and with winter approaching they concluded that they had gone far enough, and began looking around for a homestead.” Joseph Carabin purchased 216 acres of land from Timothy Baker on 4 November 1828 for $1,600 dollars.
The reason the families wished to leave France is unknown. It is believed that due to the rising French political disorder at the time the families felt America could give them a better life and religious freedom. Sister Francisca Bauer, an exiled nun, and young seminarian Peter Carabin were in the party of travelers.
Joseph and Katharina (Bauer) Carabin (my 3rd gr-grandparents) arrived in the United States with eight children ranging in age from 23 to 2 years. They were Peter, the eldest, a seminarian preparing for the priesthood; Augustin (my 2nd gr-grandfather); Elizabeth, who married Anton Phillips; Isodore, who became a farmer; Joseph, who became a grocer in Monroeville; Louis, who became an M.D; Carolyn who married Anthony Bauer; and Frank, who traveled to the gold fields of California.
In his native country, Joseph was an oil maker, pressing oil from rapeseed for use in lamps. After his arrival in the United States, he was a farmer and died in 1835.
In 1829, Bishop Fenwick of Cincinnati rode to Norwalk on his little dark-gray French pony. Hearing that a seminarian was living nearby, he visited the Carabin family. Peter Carabin accompanied him back to Cincinnati where he continued his studies and was ordained a priest in September of 1830.
In the summer of 1830, Bishop Fenwick visited Peru a second time. He celebrated Mass in the house of Joseph Carabin. The house was described as a log hut, one story high, and comprised of three apartments. The Bishop heard confession and gave Holy Communion. Six children, who had been prepared by Sr. Francisca, received First Holy Communion and were confirmed.
Whether the original log cabin was built on the land where this log home stood is unknown. It is also unknown if any part of the original home was incorporated into the newer structure. There is documentary proof that by 1837 the family of Augustin and Catharina (Hettel *1) Carabin (second eldest child of Joseph and Catharina) were living in the log home when their second oldest child was born in 1837, as were the remainder of their eight children. Augustin farmed the land, was a blacksmith, and for a time owned a sawmill.
All eight children of Augustin and Katharine grew to adulthood. Two daughters never married and stayed home with their aged parents. After the death of their brother Joseph’s wife, Helene (Wilhelm*2), at age 24, they also cared for Joseph and his two small sons, Alphonsus and August. August married Mary Schaffer*3 (Mayme to friends) in 1902, and the young couple went to housekeeping in a nearby home. When the health of August’s aunts began to fail, he moved back into the homestead with his wife and one child. Four children were born to August and Mary, namely Alvin (my father), Walter, August, and Lucy (Sister M. Angela). They were the last Carabin family to live in the home. The farm was sold to Peter Schaffer, a nephew of Mayme, and his wife, Pauline in 1960. August and Mary remained in the home until their deaths three weeks apart in 1961-1962.
This two-story log home was torn down log by log in 1996 by St. Alphonsus Catholic Parish, Peru Ohio, which is located a short distance from where the home stood. It was rebuilt into a story and a half structure near the church and is now dedicated as a prayer center in honor of St. John Neumann, an early missionary priest, who once served this parish in 1841 for three months and is a canonized saint in the Catholic Church. It is believed this saint at one time may have said Mass or at least visited the Carabin family in the home.
JOHANN AND CATHARINA (PAHL) HETTEL (*1)
Catharina Hettel, wife of Augustin Carabin, was the daughter of Johann Hettel, a farmer and his wife, Catharina Pahl Hettel, who with their family immigrated to America in 1833. They settled in Peru Township, south of Monroeville, Ohio, on Peru Center Road near Snyder Road.
JOHANN AND BARBARA (SCHMITT) WILHELM (*2)
Helen Wilhelm, wife of Joseph Carabin, was the daughter of Johann Wilhelm, a farmer, and his wife, Barbara (Schmitt). Her parents immigrated from Rossbrunn, Bavaria, Germany in the 1840's as single people. They were married on 5 February 1849 in St. Alphonsus Catholic Church, Peru, Ohio, and then purchased a farm in Peru Township on Snyder Road. They became the parents of four children.
AND CATHERIN (BURGER) SCHAEFFER (*3)
AGATHA, MATTHIAS AND BARBARA (HAAS) SCHONACKER
Mary Schaffer (spelling changed) was the daughter of Peter and Margaret (Schonacker) Schaeffer, Jr. Peter Jr. was born in 1837 in Peru Twp., Huron Co., Ohio and was a carpenter and a farmer. His parents, Peter and Catherin (Berger) Schaeffer immigrated to America as a married couple with three children in 1833. Peter Schaeffer Sr. was a farmer and the family resided in Peru Township on Settlement Road, a short distance from the present St. Alphonsus Church. They raised a family of eleven children.
Agatha (Burger) Schonacker, a widow, and her sons Matthias and Jacob immigrated to America from Hultehouse, Lorraine, France, in 1829-31 period. They settled in Peru Township. Matthias married Barbara Haas, a native of Sufflenheim, Alsace, France. They settled in Peru Township and later Bronson Township and became the parents of six children. Daughter, Margaret, married Peter Schaeffer, Jr., and they became the parents of ten children. Peter and Margaret’s daughter, Mary Clara married August Carabin.