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Fort Jennings Community Book PDF Print E-mail
Friday, April 23, 2010 10:33 AM

Many of us in small towns hunt up our parish directory when we want to know who’s who. We read a marriage announcement in the paper and wonder, “Which Miller does she belong to?” That’s the most numerous name in the Delphos phone book. Pohlman isn’t far behind. Then there’s Grothaus but they spell their name four different ways. Fisher and Fischer is the same way.

Just get out the parish directory to get the correct information. Some directories contained photos so you can compare how someone looked 10 years ago. Churches in Ottoville and Fort Jennings have published histories that include family listings. Many of these listings include three generations of a family.

Deb Birkemeier of Fort Jennings is going one better. She is compiling a Fort Jennings Family Book, which aims to include every individual and family in Fort Jennings. This means EVERYONE. With the help of many friends, she is collecting all the families in the community, not just members of St. Joseph’s Parish. This includes everyone in the school district, Jennings Township and more; some even living in Jackson or Monterey Township. If you consider yourself a member of the Fort Jennings Community, send your info to: Deb Birkemeier at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by mail to 21121 Road 22, Ft. Jennings, OH 45844

Information should include his and her names with maiden name of wife; year born for both; towns they grew up in; his and her parents, including maiden names of women; and children’s names and years born. If a child is married include year and wife’s maiden name. Also include grandkids and year of birth.

Writing is not new to Deb. She was the co-author of the Familie Laudick, along with her parents, Dick and Jeanette Laudick of Ottawa. Her father and grandfather were editors of the Putnam County Sentinel for several years. Her mother has also compiled other genealogy books, including The Recker Connection and the Schmitz – Meyer book.

Deb and her husband, Harold, live in rural Fort Jennings, where they raised five children: Crystal (Terry) Horstman, Scott (Kelly) Birkemeier, Shawn (Angie) Birkemeier, Ryan (Nikki) Birkemeier and Craig Birkemeier. They also have eight grandchildren.

Deb has always had an interest in genealogy. This project began three years ago when she was “laid up” from back surgery. To have something to do, she compiled a Fort Jennings Directory for herself on the people and businesses, listed according to the roads or streets of their location. This project evolved into her present project. She will include ancestral info if provided to her. She has used the 1984 and 1998 St. Joseph Parish books, telephone books and plat books for some information.

This book will also include a history of Fort Jennings and Jennings Township, since Fort Jennings will celebrate its 200th birthday in 2012.

It was first a supply fort during the War of 1812.

So send your info to Deb by e-mail or snail mail. If you don’t get your family info to her, someday your descendants will say “Why weren’t we in that book?”


Last Updated on Tuesday, November 06, 2012 3:12 PM

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