Monday, November 24, 2014

William C. Hibsch, Blacksmith Shod Horses Then Died (52 Ancestors #44)

This is another post for 52 Ancestors in 52 weeks, a challenge on No Story Too Small by Amy Johnson Crow.


    After shoeing fifteen horses during working hours, Tuesday, W.C. Hibsch lay down on the floor of his blacksmith shop, in McCabe, at 6 o'clock in the evening, and expired a few minutes later, presumably from the excessive use of alcoholic stimulants.

    Deceased was aged about 45 years.  He had resided in McCabe but a short time and very little is known of his antecedents.  A son, 15 years of age, and a daughter, aged 5, survive him.  The remains were taken charge by the Ruffner undertaking establishment and brought to this city.  Internment will take place this afternoon, at 3 o'clock, in the Citizen's cemetery.

W.C., as he was usually referred to, Hibsch was my great-grandfather.  He was born about 1868 in Prussia and emigrated to the United States with his parents and sister in about 1871.  The family lived in Wisconsin for awhile then migrated to California.  

In 1895, he married Martha Bashor in Los Angeles County, California.  They had two children, Alba William Hibsch, my grandfather, born in 1896, and Cecil Everett Hibsch, born in 1902.

References to his children in the obituary were wrong.  His son Alba was 11 years old at the time of W.C.'s death in 1907.  He didn't have a daughter but another son, Cecil, age 4 when W.C. died.  This inaccuracy served as a reminder to verify all information in an obituary because they are, as I've said before, rich with clues but not reliability.  

W.C. was a blacksmith.  He once had a shop in Covina, Los Angeles County, California.  At the time of his death, he worked for the McCabe Mining Company in the small mining town of McCabe located near Prescott, Arizona.  Martha and the children were not living with him at the time possibly due to the couple's estrangement according to family stories.

Source: Los Angeles Herald, Vol 26, No.155, 4 March 1897
(click image to enlarge)

Obit transcription by Denise Hibsch Richmond
Source: Arizona Journal-Miner, June 1907
Obtained from the Sharlot Hall Museum -Library and Archives, Prescott, Arizona

Note: This post has been updated; it was originally published in 2013.


  1. Saw your blog listed at Geneabloggers, congratulations. Wow, I have yet to find my ancestors in news papers.

    Take care,

    Moises Garza
    We Are Cousins - My personal blog about Northeastern Mexico and South Texas Genealogy

    Mexican Genealogy - Blog where anyone with Mexican roots can get started with their family genealogy and history.

    1. Thanks for commenting my post Moises. This obit was a lucky find. A newspaper from another ancestor's hometown has been digitized so that's a treasure trove also. I found it at the town's public library. --Denise


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