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Boattcher / Battcher Family History

Open the Family Chart as you read along 

Frederick Henry and Wilhelmina "Minnie" Boattcher came to the United States from Germany. We believe Frederick may have been born in Berlin and the notations on Minnie's death certificate appear to indicate she was born in Saxony on July 4, 1833. 

The couples first child Louisa "Lou" was born April 19, 1859, while they were living in Blue Island, IL. With this information it's probably safe to assume Frederick and Minnie immigrated to the United States sometime in the 1850s probably the later half.

The couples second child was born, William Henry Boattcher November 17, 1868. Frederick died two months later, January 18, 1869. Because He died so early in his children's lives, probably explains why so little is known about the family before their arrival in the United States.

By October of 1871, Minnie had been widowed 2 years, had two children, 12 year-old Louisa and 3 year-old William and moved from Blue Island on the Southern outskirts of Chicago into the city.Chicago Historical Society / Chicago Fire  index When Catherine O'Leary's cow kicked over the lantern sparking the Great Chicago Fire, family legend has it...  

Minnie placed her two children into a steamer trunk, threw it onto the back of a wagon and covered it with soaking blankets. She hitched her horses to the wagon and drove them through the flames and crowded streets, across the Chicago River to safety.

The Battcher's survived the Great Fire and Minnie continued to raise her two children alone. Her daughter Lou grew up and married Mr. Sharke and later Abner Noble. No children were born out of either marriage. After the death of her second husband "Aunt Lou" resided with her brother's family.

William Henry married Mary Emma, the daughter of George and Hester Murdock from Cincinnati, Ohio together they had seven children.

Their first child Margaret Louise was born in Chicago on May 5, 1894. On November 16, 1928 Margaret entered the Order of the Sisters of Saint Joseph in Tipton Indiana, becoming Sister Mary Aloyse. She left the Order six years later and her name reverted back to Margaret. She spent the depression years living with her Mother and brothers in Maywood, IL. She took up teaching and returned to Indiana before retiring, when she returned to school and earned a Bachelors degree from St Mary's College of Notre Dame at the age of 70. 

William And Mary's second child, Clifton Stewart was born in Cincinnati on January 6, 1896. When Stewart was an infant he contracted polio. Mary's sister Maggy Murdock helped care for the children during this time. 

Their third child Hester Elizabeth was born on May 27, 1899 in Chicago. Two years later, on July 9, 1901 at 8:45 pm after 68 years, William's mother Minnie's heart gave out on her.

Some time in the early 1920's Hester Battcher met Arnold Coyne at a Popcorn Stand on the west side of Chicago. The two fell in love and eloped on May 25, 1922. They hid the fact they were married from family and friends until some time in early 1923, when Hester discovered she was in a family way. After their betrothal was revealed the couple moved in with Hester's Aunt Maggy and her second husband Uncle Charlie Golding in the Englewood neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago. It was while living here when their first child Margaretmae "Peggy" Hester Coyne was born September 22 1923. They then bought a one-bedroom home on Kenilworth Ave in Villa Park, IL. After their second child Patricia Cherie was born on August 16, 19??. They bought a larger home a few blocks away on Ardmore Ave. Arnold built a small apartment in the attic which accommodated Aunt Maggy and Uncle Charlie during the Depression. 

Mary gave birth to Joseph Wolf on May 20, 1903, he died six months later in January of 1904. Emmett was William and Mary's fifth child he was born on March 24, 1904, three months after Joseph's death. 

Emmett married a woman named Elsie they had two daughters. The first was a talented violinist named Elizabeth and the second was named Mary.

William and Mary's sixth son, Francis "Frank" Murdock Battcher came into the world on January 16, 1907. Frank entered into three marriages; the first was to Bernice Hubler, he then married Dolly, who gave birth to one son named Frank Jr. he died at age 14. Franks third marriage to Evangeline "Vange" produced two girls, Katherine and Cynthia.

William and Mary's seventh child was born "Lewis William" July 13,1907. Later William would change the spelling of his son's name to "Louis". He reasoned Lewis was the Irish spelling and because of anti Irish sentiment of the time he thought the change would make life easier for his son.

This wasn't the only time ethnic bias caused William to change the spelling of a name. During The Great War (WWI) the "OE" was dropped from the name Boattcher and replaced with an "A" to make the name more acceptable as Battcher because of anti German sentiment.

Louis married Helen the daughter of William and Lillian (Weber) Thoms of Butternut Wisconsin. When the couple first married they shared the home in Maywood with his parents along with his brother Cliff and His Father's sister Lou. Both of Louis and Helen's children, William and Sandra were born while they were living here.

After it was discovered Hester and Arnold had eloped, William and Mary moved their family to the Chicago suburb of Maywood, IL. During the Great Depression the Battcher family banded together to make the best of things. The house in Maywood was pretty full as the boys were marrying and their wives were moving in. William's sister Lou's husband had died by this time and she was living with them too.

William worked as a ticket agent for the Rapid Transit Company of Chicago. On the bitterly cold morning of Wednesday January 16, 1929 , as he was walking the six blocks to his station, William suffered a heart attack. He hung on for two days before he died at 11:00 pm Friday January 18 at the age of 60.

After her husbandís death, Mary Emma married her daughter in-law's brother Ralph Hubler a man half her age.

On July 18, 1943 Aunt Lou left the family home in Maywood for the last time when she was admitted into Cook County Hospital. She died 20 days later at 11:20 pm August 8. At the age of 84 Aunt Lou's heart failed her due to arteriosclerosis (Hardening of the arteries).

In the spring of 1951 Mary Emma discovered she had cancer. Six months later on October 3, 1951 at 3:45 am, after 79 years, she left this world leaving behind six children and nine grand children.

__________________

The Battcher Family History 

by: Matthew B. Rogers

Appendix

Birth & Death Dates compiled from the notes of Margaret Louise Battcher, Hester (Battcher) Coyne & Louis William Battcher.

Cause of Deaths compiled from Death Certificates from the Cook County Clerks Office acquired by Howard Taylor, for Minnie, William Henry & Mary Emma (Murdock) Battcher and Louisa (Battcher) Noble.

Tidbits  and incidental information provided from the memories of Peggy (Coyne) Rogers and Louis William Battcher.

As we have stated the research continues and you are encouraged to add your facts speculations or questions e-mail coleman@colemancoyne.com 

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