A number of years ago while looking through records held by the Ridgeway Museum I came upon a photocopy of an address given by Asa W. Climenhaga on the occasion of his father’s ninetieth birthday celebration. In it he describes, in brief, the characteristics of his brothers and sisters, and his many nieces and nephews. As the majority of these folks have passed on, this is now an important family document. As Asa had a great interest in the Climenhaga family history I believe he would very much approve of it being reproduced and shared here. –James Climenhage
Ridgeway, March 9, 1940 – Peter M. Climenhaga, Stevensville, retired farmer, celebrated his 90th anniversary on March 7. He was born on the farm where he is now living, half a mile east of Stevensville, of pioneer stock retiring from active work about ten years ago. He is widely known, having been Foreign Missionary Treasurer for the Brethren in Christ denomination for many years, of which he has been a prominent member. He also served on the public school board.
In 1872 he married miss Anna Winger, who resided west of Stevensville, and who passed on some years ago. He now resides with his daughter, Mrs. Sarah Neff. Mr. Climenhaga was the father of six boys and three girls. Four of his sons are ministers, one a deacon and one a school teacher deceased. Asa, John, Abigail reside in Pennsylvania; Reuben, Laban, and Naaman live in the Canadian northwest, and Sarah resides near Stevensville. There are 39 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. A son Solomon and a daughter Ella are deceased. Mr. Climenhaga enjoys good physical health and has never suffered any serious illness.
Solomon is the oldest son. He was born April 16, 1874. He graduated from Norman School and taught in the public school system. [He married Elizabeth Sherk, who was born] at Fisherville, Ontario December 21, 1872. She is five feet two inches high and her average weight is one hundred and fifteen pounds. She is noted for being early to bed and early to rise. They had one son and one daughter. Naomi was born August 6, 1904 at Stevensville, Ontario. She is five feet one inch with an average weight of one hundred and sixty pounds. Her motto is things done by half are never done right. Oscar is a little older than his sister Naomi. He is also slightly taller and slightly heavier. He is known for the statement “you know what I mean.” Naomi has remained single. Oscar is married and lives at Fort Erie. He is a customs officer on the Canadian side.
Reuben Sinclair is the second eldest of Peter Martin Climenhaga’s family. He is five feet eight inches tall with an average weight of one hundred and seventy pounds. He is a minister and is noted for saying “Look here.” He married Elizabeth Bert of Kansas. Elizabeth was born October 13, 1880 near Detroit, Kansas. She is about five feet five inches in height and an average weight of 160 lbs. Her characteristic is others first. To this union were born ten children. The following is a record of them made in 1938.
|NAME||DATE OF BIRTH||WEIGHT||HEIGHT||CHARACTERISTIC|
|Paul Harris||October 23, 1906||170||5’ 10”||Anxious to get things done|
|Alice Irene||February 10, 1908||160||5’ 6”||Good natured|
|Mabel Elizabeth||June 29, 1909||150||5’ 9”||Carefulness|
|Frances Anna||September 26, 1910||160||5’ 3”||Kind to others|
|Evan Peter||April 6, 1912||175||5’ 10”||Rather modest|
|Orville Samuel||November 27, 1913||159||5’ 8”||Quiet and steady|
|John Leroy||November 7, 1916||160||5’ 7”||Believes he can if he tries and tries|
|Miriam Ruth||June 16, 1918||136||5’ 5”||Quiet and fond of reading|
|Verna Evelyn||January 16, 1920||181||5’ 5”||Cheerful|
|Daniel Bert||July 24, 1921||117||5’ 2”||Enjoys stories and poetry|
Abbie was born December 22, 1879. She is five feet and three inches tall, with an average weight of 138 lbs. She is noted for her success as a home maker. She married Jesse E. Brechbill of Detroit, Kansas. He was born in Franklin County, Pennsylvania August 12, 1878. He is 5′ 6″ in height and his average weight is 138. He is noted for his ability as a business manager. To them were born six children, the youngest being twins with one dying in infancy.
|Helen Amanda||May 24, 1908|
|Ray||February 9, 1910||155||5′ 11”||Why worry?|
|Anna M.||May 19, 1917||118||5′ 3″||A true heart|
|Ruth Miriam||July 20, 1919||115||5′ 5″||I can|
Ella Ann was born September 30, 1882. She was a little taller than Abbie. She so much appreciated her parental home that she hesitated a long time before she consented to leave it. She married Carl Baker of Ontario and moved with him to a prairie farm in Northwest Canada. The transition from her childhood home to a home in the west was more than her tender life could stand. After a short period of married life she suddenly departed to be at rest with Him whom she loved and sincerely served from childhood.
John Arthur was born April 16, 1884. He is 5′ 7″ with an average weight of 170 lbs. He is a minister, missionary, and teacher. His chief characteristic is “Made clear by the words I know.” He married Emma Smith of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. She was born February 24, 1892. She is 5′ 5″ and weighs 175. One word, loyalty, best explains her characteristic. To them were born five children.
|Arthur Merlin||February 21, 1916||155||5′ 11″||Student|
|David Elbert||June 14, 1919||185||5′ 10″||Deliberate|
|Joel Ray||April 9, 1922||100||5′ 1″||Writer|
|Leoda Marie||February 14, 1931||–||–||Reader|
|Kathryn Anna||June 28, 1933||–||–||Mother’s helper|
Laban was born March 7, 1886. He is 5′ 10″ tall with an average height of 150 lbs. His life work consists of tilling the soil, rearing a family, and serving his church as deacon. He is noted for his desire to be punctual. He married Priscilla Bert of Detroit, Kansas. She was born July 24, 1887. She is five feet five inches tall with an average weight of one hundred and twenty six pounds. A faithful wife and mother describes her well. To this union were born eleven children.
|Ethel||March 17, 1912||130||5′ 6″||Sharing|
|Earl Richard||December 6, 1913||135||5′ 7″||That’s all right|
|Ruth Elizabeth||January 20, 1915||129||5′ 3″||Ability|
|Florence Mae||May 15, 1916||140||5′ 6″||On the square|
|Velma Irene||September 2, 1917||130||5′ 6″||Willing worker|
|Helen Marie||September 1, 1918||145||5′ 4″||Kind|
|Dorcas Doreen||February 20, 1921||125||5′ 5″||Loyalty|
|Samuel Bert||January 11, 1923||100||5′ 0″||Dependable|
|Ernest Charles||December 12, 1924||95||4′ 11″||Reader|
|Viola Rowena||April 14, 1927||66||4′ 5″||Spirited|
|Lois Catherine||January 22, 1931||36||3′ 9″||Affectionate|
Asa W. was born July 1, 1889. Height 5′ 10″ with an average weight of 170. Educator, minister, and author. He greatly appreciates the beautiful and is noted for being systematic. He married Anna Elizabeth Kipe. She was born July 13, 1896 at Waynesboro, Pennsylvania. She is 5′ 7″ with an average weight of one hundred and thirty. She is a scholar, teacher, homemaker. She is noted for being thorough in her work.
Sarah was born November 22, 1890. She is 5′ 5″ with an average weight of 130. She is an ideal Christian and a friend of youth. She married Edmund Neff of Stevensville, Ontario who was born June 2, 1869. He is 5′ 10″ with an average weight of 145. He is reserved but helpful.
Naaman was born March 14, 1893. He is about five feet ten inches tall with an average weight of about 170. He is a minister and tiller of the soil. He married Sallie Wenger of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania. She was born December 21, 1897 and is about 5′ 4″ with an average weight of about one hundred and forty. She is a homemaker. To them were born six children.
|Anna Elizabeth||September 1923||–||99||Worker|
|Clarence Eugene||February 1926||–||92||Full of life|
|Eunice May||July 1927||–||86||Kindhearted|
|Merle Austin||January 1929||–||60||Likes horses|
|Marjorie Lillian||March 1932||–||33||Entertainer|
|Ferne Ruth||April 1934||–||31||Imitator|
Compiled by Asa W. Climenhaga, Messiah College, Grantham Pennsylvania, 17025
Also read Later Family Links by Asa W. CLIMENHAGA