Feature Friday: Benjamin CLIMENHAGA

Benjamin 'Ben' Climenhaga c1934
Benjamin ‘Ben’ Climenhaga with Jean and Harold Carver (great-grandchildren) circa 1934

BENJAMIN ‘BEN’ CLIMENHAGA was born 19 August 1851 and died 23 April 1938 from chronic nephritis (kidney disease).[1] He was born and raised in Stevensville, Bertie Township, Welland County, Ontario and Stevensville was his final resting place. He was the second eldest son of David Climenhaga and Abigail Barnhart. Ben was first married 2 August 1874 at Drummondville, Stamford Township, Welland County, Ontario[2] to JULIA ANN WINGER who was born 8 December 1855 at Black Creek, Bertie Township, Welland County, Ontario and died 25 April 1885 from complications during childbirth.[3] She was the fifth child and third daughter of Susannah Climenhegg and Joseph Winger.

Ben Climenhaga 1932
Ben Climenhaga and daughter Esther. Climenhaga family reunion 1932.

 

 

 

After Julia Ann’s death Ben was remarried 23 December 1886 at Markham Township, York County, Ontario[4] to CHRISTENA ‘(TENA)’ BRILLINGER. Tena was born 20 September 1860 at Markham Township, York County, Ontario and died 24 October 1930 at Gormley, Markham Township, York County, Ontario from cerebral hemorrhage (apoplexy). [5] She was the daughter of Jonathan Brillinger and Mary Ann Horner.

Seven children from the first union: Bertha May Climenhaga b 1875; Emerson Climenhaga b 1876; Jesse Elliot Climenhaga b 1878; Esther Climenhaga b 1879; (stillborn son) Climenhaga b 1882[6]; Susannah Climenhaga b 1883, (stillborn daughter) Climenhaga b 1885[7].

“After his family was raised Benjamin moved to Markham Ontario and bought the Brillinger farm. He was a big, strong man, a good farmer and a faithful worker. He was chosen a deacon of Markham district in 1917. Later he sold his farm and retired in Gormley where his second wife died. He then moved to Bertie and spent his last days with his son Emerson.”[8]

Ben and Julia Ann (Winger) Climenhaga circa 1885
Believed to be a young Ben Climenhaga and possibly Julia Ann (Winger) Climenhaga circa 1885

Benjamin was a farmer and a Tunker all his life. Christena is laid to rest at Heise Hill Brethren in Christ Church Cemetery, Whitechurch Township, York County, Ontario. Benjamin and Julia Ann are laid to rest at Bertie Brethren in Christ Church Cemetery, Bertie Township, Welland County, Ontario. The inscription on Ben’s stone reads, “Kind friends beware as you pass by, as you are now so once was I, as I am now so you must be, prepare therefore to follow me.”

 

 

 

 

Believed to be Ben Climenhaga and second wife Christena Brillinger
Believed to be Ben Climenhaga and second wife Christena Brillinger

Updated 29 March 2015

 

Footnotes    ((↵) returns to text)

  1. Archives of Ontario. Registrations of Deaths, 1869-1938. MS 935, Reel 613, p.236. Archives of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.(↵)
  2. Ontario, Canada. Registrations of Marriages, 1869-1928. MS932, Reel 16, p.207. Archives of Ontario, Toronto.(↵)
  3. Archives of Ontario. Registrations of Deaths, 1869-1938. MS 935, Reel 42, p. 146. Archives of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.(↵)
  4. Ontario, Canada. Registrations of Marriages, 1869-1928. MS932, Reel 55, p.95. Archives of Ontario, Toronto.(↵)
  5. Archives of Ontario. Registrations of Deaths, 1869-1938. MS 935, Reels 405, p. 155. Archives of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.(↵)
  6. Archives of Ontario. Registrations of Births and Stillbirths – 1869-1913. MS 929, Reel 57. Toronto, Ontario, Canada: Archives of Ontario, p.84.(↵)
  7. Archives of Ontario. Registrations of Births and Stillbirths – 1869-1913. MS 929, Reel 73. Toronto, Ontario, Canada: Archives of Ontario, p. 636.(↵)
  8. Cober, G. (1950). A historical sketch of the Brethren in Christ Church known as Tunkers in Canada. Gromley, ON.(↵)
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