Tuesday, May 2, 2023

John Thomas Couser Family

John Thomas Couser, third generation
John Thomas Couser
John Thomas Couser was the sixth child of Thomas and Rachel Orr Burns Couser. He and his siblings represent the third generation of the William Couser family lineage. He was born on December 5, 1849 at the Thomas Couser home near the village of May Hill, Bratton Township, Adams County, Ohio. The 1870 US Census indicated, at age 20, he resided with his parents, along with siblings, William Henry (age 28), James (age 24), Susan Elizabeth (age 15), David Gray (age 17), Margaret Rachel (age 13), Nancy Haddassah (age 10), and Joseph Andrew Richie Couser (age 8).

At age 21, John Thomas Couser married Rachel Ann Fillmore on February 9, 1871 in Mount Etna, Adams County, Iowa. Rachel Ann Fillmore was born in June of 1851 in Maryland to John Henry Fillmore and Sarah Fillmore-Zook. During their marriage, John Thomas and Rachel Fillmore Couser had 8 children: William Henry (1872-1924), Thomas Albert (1873-?), John Anthony (1874-1952), Sarah Etta (1879-1894), Bert Leroy (1881-1957), Joseph David (1885-1961), Edith Mae (1888-1982), and Irving (1894-1949).

John Thomas Couser and his family remained in Shelby County, Iowa for the next 2-3 decades, where he worked as a farmer, teacher, and was a member of the German Baptist Church. The US Census in 1885 revealed John Thomas Couser, at age 34, resided near the town of Harlan, Shelby County, Iowa, with his wife Rachel (age 32), and children William Henry (age 12), Thomas A. Couser (age 10), John Anthony Couser (age 7), Sarah Etta Couser (age 5), and Bertie R. Couser (age 2).

John Couser, Rachel Couser, Grave Site
John T. and Rachel Couser Grave Site

South Dakota

In 1898, John Thomas Couser and family moved to Marshall County, South Dakota, and In 1900, county records indicated he owned property in Dumarce, La Belle and Veblen Townships. The 1900 US Census revealed he lived with wife Rachel, sons John Anthony Couser, Joseph David Couser, daughter Edith M. Couser, son Irwin Couser, and house guest Anna M. Kimball, who was originally from Shelby County, IA. In 1901, Anna M. Kimball married John Anthony Couser.

In Marshall County, John Thomas Couser operated a farm in the aforementioned townships and taught at several rural schools. In 1908, he left the farm and moved to reside in the city of Britton, SD, also in Marshall County, remaining there until the time of his passing. He and Rachel Couser purchased property in Britton, on block 11 and lot 9, from Albert and Emma Brash on December 31, 1904 for a sum of $1000.00. He and wife Rachel were members of the German Brethren Church in Iowa, but after moving to South Dakota, they became devoted members of the Methodist Church in Britton, SD. The Methodist Missionary Society was hosted at the homes of Mrs. J. T. Couser and Mrs. C. N. Carver on several occasions. The 1910 US Census indicated John T. Couser resided in Britton, Ward 1, Marshall County, SD. with wife Rachel (age 57), son Irving (age 18) and mother-in-law Sarah Hyatt Fillmore (age 80).

After failing health for a week, John Thomas Couser passed on June 5, 1918 at age 68. He was buried on June 7, 1918 at the Britton Cemetery. Rachel Ann Fillmore Couser passed on September 28, 1932, at age 82. They were both interred in the Britton Cemetery, Old Cem Block 269, Lot 1, Spaces 5 & 6.

At the time of his passing, besides his wife Rachael, survivors included William H. Couser of Bonesteel, SD; John Anthony Couser of Veblen, SD; Bert L. Couser of Libertyville, IA; Joseph David Couser of Britton, SD; Mrs. Mae Fitting of Lake City, SD and Irving Couser of Galesburg, IL.

Children: John Thomas and Rachel Couser

Wm. H. Couser Wedding
William Henry and Leora Couser
William Henry Couser

William Henry Couser, first born of John Thomas and Rachel Couser, married Leora Etta Kimball on March 10, 1897 in Kirkman, Shelby County, Iowa. In the Spring of 1899, he settled near Laurel, Cedar County, Nebraska. In 1910, William H. Couser resided in Precinct 14, Cedar County, NE and was engaged in farming. THE "LEGACY OF NEBRASKA" book in 2017, by Todd Williams, featured the William H. Couser Barn located in Cedar Co., Nebraska. It was built for William H. Courser during 1912-13, in the second phase of centric barn construction in Nebraska, and convention holds that the design for the barn came from the University of Nebraska.

According to Williams, of the 35 “round” barns in the state of Nebraska, Cedar County claimed the Couser barn. It was actually a dodecagon or 12-sided cattle and horse feeding barn. The Couser barn is unique among other round barns for being 12-sided as polygonal-shaped barns were built with layouts including six, eight, ten and fourteen sides.

Round barns of the period 1905-1920 have feeding stalls around the outside ring. Twelve beams in the center of the main floor provide support for the roof and ground-level hay storage. One side of the barn has an extended face and traditional roof gable to accommodate the hay loft. Because of the light frame wood construction and weight distribution carried by the walls, the interior of the loft is unencumbered by beams. This allowed for efficient use of space for hay storage. The barn is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
William Henry Couser Round Barn, Cedar County, Nebraska

Wm. Henry Couser Round Barn
William Henry Couser Round Barn, Cedar County, Nebraska

Approximately five years after the barn was built, William Henry Couser and family moved to South Dakota and resided in the Bonesteel area in Gregory County.  William Henry Couser passed in 1924 and is buried in the Britton Cemetery, Marshall Co., SD. The grave is located at OldCem Block, 269, Lot 1, space 3.  His wife Lenora Kimball Couser passed on February 3, 1932 and is buried in the Mount Hope Cemetery in Valentine, NE.  

Leora Kimball Couser
Wm. H. Couser Grave Marker

William Henry Couser is often confused with his father’s older brother of the same name, who died on March 18, 1912 and was buried at Tranquility Cemetery, Tranquility, Adams Co., Ohio.

John Anthony Couser

John Couser, Anna Couser,
John A. and Anna M. Couser

John Anthony Couser, the 2nd child of John Thomas and Rachel Couser, was born on July 31, 1874 in Maryville, Union County, Ohio. At age 27, he married Anna M. Kimball in Harlan, Shelby County, Iowa on February 27, 1901. John A. and Anna Couser initially lived with his parents in Marshall County, SD, and later resided on his own homestead. He worked as a farmer and later he retired to live in Sisseton, Roberts County, SD. John A. and Anna Couser had three children: Earl Chatham Couser (1902-1995), Elmer Anthony Couser (1903-1969) and Ester Elizabeth Couser (1905-1969). John A. Couser passed on June 10, 1952 and Anna M. Couser passed on April 1, 1969. Both were buried at St. Peter’s Cemetery in Sisseton, Roberts Co., SD.

Joseph David Couser

Joseph D. Couser
Joseph D. Couser
Joseph David Couser, the 5th child of John Thomas and Rachel Couser, was born on September 9, 1885 in Harlan, Shelby County, Iowa. At age 24, He married Mary Lavina Jones on November 25, 1909 in Britton, SD.
Mary L. Jones was born on October 13, 1891 in Partland, Chautauqua County, NY. He and Mary had seven children including: Verna Mae (1910-1991), Valetta Irene (1920-1981), Frederic (Fritz) George (1911-1984), Charles Anthem (1913-1986), Elwin Vern (1916-1917), Gayle Francis (1918-?), and Melvin Everett (1923-1987). 
Mary L. Jones Couser
Mary L. Jones Couser

This marriage ended in divorce and in 1930 Joseph D. Couser lived with his mother Rachel Couser in Miller Township, near Britton, SD. In 1940, the US Census indicated Joseph lived with his common law wife Cora in Long Hollow Township in Roberts County, SD. In 1940, Mary Lavina Couser lived in Cedar Rapids, Iowa with sons Charles A., Melvin E. and daughter Valetta I. Couser. Joseph David Couser passed on November 5, 1961 and is buried at St. Peter’s Cemetery in Sisseton, Roberts County SD alongside his wife Cora. 

Mary Lavina Couser passed on September 27, 1972 and is buried at Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery, Cedar Rapids, Linn County, Iowa.

Irving Couser

Irving Couser was born on October 10, 1894 in Marshalltown, Marshall County, Iowa. The 1900 US Census indicated Irving at age 8 lived with his parents and siblings in Marshall County, South Dakota. At age 18, he lived in Britton SD with his parents, John Thomas (age 61), Rachel Couser (age 57) and grandmother Rachel Zook (age 82). Irving married Mattie Douglas and in 1925 Irving lived in Galesburg, Knox County, IL., along with Mattie’s father, John R. Douglas, mother Sarah Douglas, brother Earl Douglas and William K. Glenn, Charles Spitzer and Lewis Turney. Irving passed on December 6, 1949 in Rock Island, IL.

Edith Mae Couser

Edith Mae Couser was born in September of 1888 in Iowa. She married Peter Fred Fitting in 1904. Edith Mae and Peter Fitting had six children, including Garnett, Ruby May, Pearl, Harold, Floyd and Irving F. Fitting. In 1930, the US Census indicated Edith Mae resided with husband Fred Peter Fitting and daughters Pearl age 17, Ruby age 14 and son Irving age 19 in McKinley Township, Marshall County, SD. Peter Fitting passed on April 20, 1943 at age 62. Edith Mae married Lyman Miller Booth on February 14, 1944 in Vancouver, Clark Co., Washington. Edith Mae passed at age 93 on April 1982 in Pasco, Franklin County, Washington.

Sarah Etta Couser

Sarah Etta Couser was born on February 14, 1879 and passed on July 27, 1894 at age 15. Etta is buried at Brethren Cemetery in Batavia, Jefferson County, Iowa.

Thomas Albert Couser

Thomas Albert Couser was born in 1873 in Harlan, Shelby County, Iowa. At age 23, He married Della Stoker, age 18, on December 22, 1896 in Shelby County, Iowa.

Bert Leroy Couser

Bert Leroy Couser was born on December 23, 1881 in Harlan, Shelby County Iowa. He married Ethel McCleary on February 5, 1902 in Fairfield, Greene County, Iowa. The 1910 US Census indicated Bert L. Couser resided in Des Moines, Jefferson County, Iowa with his wife Ethel and children Helen M. and Avis J. Couser. In 1930, Bert L. Couser, at age 48, resided in Flint River Township, Des Moines County, Iowa. In 1940, at age 58, he resided at 405 E. Geines St., Fairfield, Jefferson County, Iowa. Bert L. Couser passed on January 31, 1957, and is buried at Fell Cemetery, Libertyville, Jefferson County, Iowa. Ethel Couser, born in 1885, passed in 1967 and is buried at Fell Cemetery. Bert and Ethel Couser had two daughters, Helen Marie (1902-1918) and Avis June (1905-1989).

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Couser Family: The First Generation

William and Sarah Waddle Couser, represent the top-level generation for the Couser family and is designated generation Number 1. William was born in 1780 in Ireland. He married Sarah Waddle, who was born about 1781 and also from Ireland. According to his family, William resided in the Parish of Ballymore, probably near the small village of Poyntzpass. The William and Sarah Couser family were members of the Presbyterian faith and attended services at the Cremore Presbyterian Church, under the preaching of Pastor Alexander Strain, near the village of Poyntzpass.  William passed in 1842 and was buried in an unmarked grave in the old Acton Parish Cemetery Graveyard, situated between Poyntzpass and the village Acton in County Armagh.

Following his passing, Sarah Waddle Couser and four of her children, William, Ellen, Joseph, and Sarah, started their immigration to the United States on the steamer Oxford, departing on July 15, 1847.   The voyage lasted thirty-five days and they landed in Staten Island, NY, on August 19, 1847.  All five members of the family were sick upon arrival and were quarantined for 10 days, likely in the Quarantine Marine Hospital.  When they landed at Staten Island, they were not allowed to have their baggage, and thus their clothing, books, and family records were all lost.  Sarah Waddle Couser did not recover and died on August 21, 1847.  Sarah was buried in an unmarked grave on Staten Island, NY.  It wasn’t clear that Samuel, their second son who previously arrived in America in 1830, was allowed to visit Sarah before she died but did attend her burial.  Because of ill health, the other family members didn’t attend Sarah’s burial.

The 19th century immigrant remains, which were previously buried on Staten Island in unmarked graves, were dug up and reinterred in an underground vault on the grounds of the new courthouse in Staten Island's St. George neighborhood on April 27, 2014.

Map of County Armagh, Ballymore Parish
Map of County Armagh, Ballymore Parish within Blue Circle

Front Gate Acton Cemetery
Front Gate of Acton Cemetery Graveyard

Acton Cemetery, Unmarked, Unkept Graves
Acton Cemetery, Unmarked, Unkept Graves

Acton Cemetery, Unkempt, Unmarked Graves
Acton Cemetery, Unmarked, Unkept Graves

Quarantine Maritime Hospital,  Staten Island
Quarantine Maritime Hospital,  Staten Island

Site of Moved Unmarked Graves, Former Maritime Hospital

Saturday, April 8, 2023

William Quinter Calvert

William Quinter Calvert, a minister of the Brethren Church, was married to the daughter of Thomas Couser, a 2nd generation member of William Couser lineage. Wm. Q. Calvert and David Gray Couser recorded the Couser family history and presented this narration to a Couser Family Reunion held on September 27, 1898 at the old Thomas Couser home. The Couser homestead was located nearly one mile southeast of May Hill, a village in Bratton township, Adams Co., Ohio.

Wm. Q. Calvert was born on August 7, 1851 in Franklin township, Adams Co., Ohio to Mills Calvert and Susannah Garman Calvert. Mills Calvert, born November 8, 1818 in West Virginia, was a farmer and minister of the Church of the German Brethren. His grandfather was Francis Calvert who was in a long line of Calverts, one of whom was Gov. of Maryland and one was Lord Baltimore of Maryland's earliest history. Mills Calvert died on June 12, 1877 and is interred at Dunkard Ridge Cemetery, Elmville, Highland Co., Ohio.

Wm. Q. Calvert accepted Christ at the age of 13, and by the time he was 19, he had taught eight terms of school. At age 21, Wm. Q. Calvert married Susan Elizabeth Couser on January 30, 1873 in May Hill, Adams Co., Ohio. Susan E. Couser, the 8th child of Thomas Couser and Rachel Orr Burns Couser, was born on December 14, 1854 in Adams Co., Ohio. 

Wm. Q. and Susan Calvert had 11 children, including Cora Emma (1874-1953), Susan (1876-1876), Thomas Mills (1878-1960), Albert (1880-1880), Jesse Arthur (1881-1952), Tirzah (1883-1976), Anna Rose (1887-1912), David William (1890-1971), Walter Quinter (1892-1906), George Carmen (1896-1982), Hazel (1901-1992).

William Quinter and Susan Couser Calvert Family
William Quinter and Susan Elizabeth Couser Calvert Family

In April, 1877, Wm. Q. Calvert and his uncle William Calvert were called to the Brethren Ministry. The group of Brethren Churches in that part of Adams County, Ohio, consisted of the May Hill Church, Strait Creek Church, The Ridge Church and the Marble Furnace Church. They underwent independent reorganizations in 1880. Wm. Q. and William were brought into the ministry structure for these churches, and were elevated to the second degree of the Brethren ministry. It was said Wm. Q. Calvert, in order to meet the breadth of his preaching assignments, traveled two thousand miles annually, mostly on horseback. He had the joy of seeing more than 250 church followers under his preaching, supervising a 100 funerals, and officiating at 150 weddings.

William. Q. Calvert resided in Ohio until 1900, when he moved to the Inglewood and Glendora areas of California, where he was engaged in Evangelical church functions. After his wife Susan passed in 1912, he moved to La Verne CA In 1913, where he served in the Brethren ministry until he retired. Wm. Q. Calvert married Mary V. Ebersole on January 30, 1916.

At age 74, Wm. Q. Calvert passed at his home at 333 E Fifth Street, La Verne, CA, on December 16, 1925. He was interred at Inglewood Park Cemetery, Inglewood, CA., along with his wives Susan E. Couser Calvert and Mary V. Calvert.
Grave Marker, Wm. Quinter Calvert
Grave Marker, Wm. Quinter Calvert

Grave Marker, Susan Couser Calvert
                                                 Grave Marker, Susan Couser Calvert

Sunday, April 2, 2023

Arthur Pearle Couser

4th Generation: Arthur Pearle Couser

Arthur Pearle Couser, born on Feb. 8, 1877, was the third son of John Burns Couser and Rachel Alice Guthrie Couser. He was born in Mondale, Harrison County, Iowa. In 1889, by the time Arthur Pearle was 3 years of age, John Burns Couser and Rachel Couser moved to a farm in Lincoln township, Story Co., Iowa. Arthur P. received his early education through the 8th grade in a country school located northwest of Zearing, IA. He later received further education at Iowa State Normal School in Cedar Falls, now known as University of Northern Iowa. Arthur Pearle Couser married Daisy Lois Fleming on March 26, 1902 at the Christian Church of Zearing. Arthur and Daisy attended the same country school but only knew of each other. Arthur P. and Daisy were married by Rev. Simon Skogsberg. Arthur was a member of the Evangelical Church, which was the planned site for the wedding, but this church burned down days prior to the wedding date and the wedding was shifted to the Christian Church at Zearing. 

Arthur Pearle and Daisy Wedding
Arthur Pearle and Daisy Wedding
Arthur and Daisy Couser celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on March 26, 1967 at a large gathering of family and friends at a dinner held at the Evangelical United Brethren Church in Zearing, IA. The event was covered by a local newspaper and reporter. The report covered their courtship, noting that they met after Arthur Pearle’s father, John Burns Couser, hired Daisy Fleming as a hired hand on the farm. Shortly thereafter, they developed the beginning of a life-lasting relationship, where they took long walks and discussed their future plans for their life together, their plans for a home on a farm, where they would live and raise their family.

65th Wedding Anniversary, 1967
65th Wedding Anniversary, 1967

Arthur Pearle Couser was a life-long member of his church of Zearing, IA and held many positions and offices in the church. He was a well-known and versatile farmer, pioneering in soybean production. He was also an avid gardener, school teacher, amateur artist, sorghum maker, 4-H leader, and a beloved father, grandfather and great grandfather. Arthur Pearle Couser passed on August 20, 1976 at the age of 99. Daisy Fleming Couser passed on September 30, 1969 at the age of 89. Both Arthur P. and Daisy Couser are interred at the Zearing Cemetery Mausoleum in Zearing, Story Co., Iowa.

John Burns Couser Story

John Burns Couser, the fourth child of Thomas Couser and Rachel Orr Burns Couser, was born on December 3, 1845 in Adams Co., Ohio. During the American Civil War between 1861-1865, as a young lad of 19 years of age, John B. Couser enlisted in the U.S. Army on May 5, 1864 in Gallipolis, Ohio in Company G, 172nd Ohio National Guard. He also enlisted on February 11, 1865 in Company K, 188th Regimen of Ohio infantry volunteers. During his military service, he was appointed as an orderly to the generals in the camp, and was honorably discharged on September 21, 1865. For his service in the American Civil War, he was awarded a pension as a war survivor, as reported in the Omaha Daily Bee, July 5, 1902.

John Burns Couser Family

Back Row (L-R): Flora Wright, Alta Aaron Couser, Grace Craft Couser, Carrie Craft, Grandmother Rachel Couser, Maude Albright, Cora Albright Couser, Henry Herbert Couser, Ollie Wright, Daisy Fleming Couser, Arthur Pearle Couser,  Mary Elizabeth Skogsberg, unknown, Mrs. Albright, May Couser, Arthur L. Couser

Middle Row (L-R): James Burns Couser, John Craft, Rev. Simon Skogsberg, Baby Skogsberg, William. Albright, Thomas Grant Couser

Front Row (L-R): Boy Skogsberg No. 1, Boy Craft No. 1, Boy Craft No. 2,  Boy Skogsberg No. 2, Skogsberg Boy No. 3, Harry Couser, Edward James Couser

John Burns Couser married Rachel Alice Guthrie on October 5, 1871 in May Hill, Ohio, and lived on a farm in that area for 1½ years. In 1873, they moved to Southwest Iowa near Modale and California Junction. By 1880, John and Rachel Couser moved to the site that became their family farm in Lincoln Township, Story Co., IA, where they resided for 22 years. Later, they moved into the town of Zearing, IA.

In his obituary, his accounting describing the early years of married life on the farm included: “The early years of married life were filled with hardship and privation; homes were far separated and no ready means of communication; many day visitors were Indians; night vigils were frequently interrupted by howling packs of wolves; money was hard to obtain; markets were far distant and fuel must be brought by team and wagon over swampy prairies for a distance of 25 miles. Winters were long and severe. The first Winter they were in Story County snow came before any corn was husked and it remained until Spring. Men went thru their corn fields dragging a sack behind them picking the ears protruding from the snow.”

To the union of John Burns Couser and Alice Guthrie Couser, five children were born. The eldest was Thomas Grant Couser, who was born in Ohio, on July 8, 1872. Quinter Antrim Couser was born on August 18, 1874 and died in his infancy on September 20, 1876. Arthur Pearle Couser was born on February 8, 1877 in Modale, Harrison Co., Iowa. Alta Aaron Couser was born on March 3, 1879 in Iowa. The last child was Herbert Henry Couser, who was born on October 29, 1881 on the family farm in Story Co., Iowa.

John Burns and Rachel Couser
John Burns and Rachel Couser

John Burns Couser resided on his family farm in Lincoln Township before the town of Zearing was founded in 1881, and later incorporated in 1883. John Burns Couser was raised in the Presbyterian faith and remained deeply united with church service since age 15. After moving to Lincoln Township in Iowa, he became united with the Evangelical Church, which was initially located in the first school house in Lincoln Township called Winkham School. The Evangelical church later moved to a new location in the town of Zearing after its founding. John Burns Couser functioned as the church’s financial steward for 38 consecutive years. 

In his obituary, John Burns Couser was said to have provided a great service to humanity, as a soldier, school teacher, farmer, stockman, township assessor, and devoted church worker. John Burns Couser passed on May 31, 1927. Rachel Alice Guthrie Couser passed on February 24, 1944 in Zearing, IA. John and Rachel Couser are interred at the Zearing Cemetery, Zearing, Story County, Iowa.

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

The Couser Family Faith and Ministry

According to the “History Of The Couser Family” document, dated September 27, 1898, the Couser family in Ireland was initially part of a religious sect referred to as “The Seceders”. This religious group was originally composed of Irish and Scottish Presbyterians that became fragmented, resulting in a branch called the Seceders. In 1840 the Synod of Ulster merged with the Secession Synod forming the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Ireland.

In the 1840’s, the William Couser family in Ireland were members of the Presbyterian faith, attending services at The Cremore Presbyterian Church, near Poyntzpass, County Armagh, Ireland, under Pastor Alexander Strain, who served as minister from 1831-1881.

Ellen Couser, William’s daughter born 1821, stated the family spent the entire day of the Sabbath at The Cremore Church, with the reading of the Psalm and catechism class in the morning, followed by an afternoon sermon and finally Sabbath School, returning home around sunset.

Following the Couser immigration to America, Thomas Couser was a member of the United Presbyterian Church of Tranquility.

Joseph Andrew Richie Couser (JARC)

David Gray Couser, Joseph A. R. Couser, JARC
left to right: Van B. Wright, David Gray Couser, Joseph A. R. Couser

JARC, the youngest surviving child of Thomas Couser and Rachel Orr Burns Couser, was born October 6, 1861 in Adams Co., Ohio. JARC and his siblings were raised in the strict tenets of the Presbyterian faith of his parents. JARC developed an early interest and skill in singing and song. At the age of 14, he led in song the congregation of the May Hill Church of the Brethren in Bratton Township, Adams County. By age 16, he became a member of the Brethren faith. At age 17, JARC taught his first term of singing school and then for 50 years he taught church music in many churches over the Southern Ohio Brethren district, he was known as “The Sweet Singer of the Hills.”

In 1898, he was elected to the ministry of the Church of the Brethren and in 1918 to the eldership of the church. He served faithfully in these capacities, especially during his years of residence in the hills of Adams County. Here he went from little church to little church preaching and singing folks into the kingdom. Even though JARC and his family resided in the territory of the Beaver Creek Church, they held their membership in the East Dayton Church. JARC passed August 19, 1943 at his residence of 5018 Wilmington Ave., Beavertown, OH. He was interred at the May Hill Cemetery, Bratton Township, Adams Co., Ohio.

Ernest Friend Couser

Ernest Friend Couser, Mabel Mote Couser
Ernest Friend & Mabel Mote Couser

Ernest Friend Couser, the seventh child of JARC and Phoebe Ann Post Couser, was born on September 4, 1899 in Adams Co., Ohio. He graduated from Manchester Academy in 1918 and Manchester College in 1926 with an A.B. degree. He also spent 18 weeks at Bethany Biblical Academy. He married Mabel Esther Mote on June 3, 1922. His wife Mabel Couser was an ordained minister of the Church of the Brethren in 1938 and assisted Ernest Friend at churches in Beaver Creek and Bradford, Ohio. Ernest Friend Couser taught school for over 40 years in the Van Buran, Fairmont and Kettering School Districts. He was an ordained pastor of the Beavercreek Church of the Brethren for 11½ years. After retiring, he also served at the Spring Valley Friends Church for 3 years. For the 3½ years that preceded his death, Ernest Friend and his wife resided at the Church of the Brethren Retirement Home in Greenville, Ohio. Ernest Friend Couser passed on May 9, 1978 in Greenville, Darke Co., Ohio and was interred at Bellbrook Cemetery, Bellbrook, Greene Co., Ohio. His wife Mabel passed on December 31, 1996.

Jacob Wilbur Couser

Jacob Wilbur Couser, the youngest and eighth child of JARC and his wife Phoebe Ann Post
Jacob Wilbur Couser, Miranda Couser
Jacob Wilber & Mary Couser
Couser, was born on July 8, 1904 in May Hill, Adams Co., Ohio. He graduated from Bellbrook High School in 1923 and married Mary Catherine Miranda on September 22, 1928. Jacob W. Couser and his wife Mary were elected to the Church of the Brethren Ministry at the same time, March 1943, by the East Dayton Church. Jacob W. was ordained an elder in 1949. Mary received a permanent license in 1944. Jacob was the teacher of the young married people’s class at East Dayton Church for fifteen years and for three years the Superintendent of the Sunday School. In 1944 the Mission Board of Southern Ohio asked Jacob and Mary to take over the work in the southern field, including Bethany, May Hill, Strait Creek, and Marble Furnace churches. Both Jacob and Mary ministered in music and the Word of God. Mary was a very talented pianist and vocalist. They were often requested to sing at church services, revivals, and funerals. In 1955, they felt led, by the Lord, to establish a Grace Brethren Church. Land for the new building, was donated and located in the village of Sinking Spring, Ohio. Many volunteers participated in the construction of the church. The cornerstone was laid in 1960, however, services were held in the basement until the sanctuary was complete. The dedication for the Grace Brethren Church was on May 29, 1966. Just a few weeks later, on July 9, 1966, Reverend Jacob W. Couser was called, by his Lord and Savior, to his Heavenly home. He died at his residence in Sinking Spring, Highland Co., Ohio and is interred at the Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Brushcreek Township, Highland Co., Ohio.

David Gray Couser

David Gray Couser
David Gray Couser, 
also above
David Gray Couser was the 7th son of Thomas Couser, born on February 22, 1853 in Adams Co., Ohio. David G. Couser taught at schools in rural Adams Co., Ohio following his basic early education. In 1881, he enrolled at Mount Norris College, which initially was a Methodist school and later became affiliated with the Church of the Brethren, and attended for three years. Previously, David G. Couser married Emma J. Yarger on December 30, 1880. The Cousers moved to Frankfort, KY, but later moved to a farm near Lincoln, NE in 1886. Throughout his active life, David Gray Couser was united with the Church of the Brethren, and became a pastor in Lincoln, NE. David Gray Couser passed at the home of his daughter, Mrs. W.O. Thomas, near Corning, NE, on May 6, 1927. David Gray Couser is interred at Wyuka Cemetery, Lincoln, Lancaster County, NE.

Alta Aaron Couser

Alta Aaron Couser was the third child of John Burns Couser and Rachel Alice Guthrie Couser.
Alta Aaron Couser
Alta Aaron Couser
He was born on his father’s farm near Zearing, Story Co., IA on March 3, 1879. 

He graduated from the college at Le Mars, IA. At that time, the college was taken over by the United  Evangelical Church, and renamed Western Union College. Alta Aaron married Grace Craft on July 3, 1901 in Zearing, Story Co., Iowa. Alta A. Couser was an ordained minister of the Evangelical Church of Iowa, and traveled the state of Iowa as the District Superintendent of the Evangelical Church. He became a presiding elder of both Cedar Rapids and Des Moines conferences of his church. At the time of his passing, he was pastor of the Evangelical Church at Fort Dodge, IA. He died at the age of 49 on June 22, 1928 at his home in Fort Dodge, IA. Alta Aaron was interred at the Zearing Cemetery in Zearing, Story Co., IA.

Alta A. Couser was survived by his wife, his son Chester Wendell Couser of Fort Dodge, IA, his mother, and three brothers, Arthur Pearle Couser and Thomas Grant Couser of Zearing, IA and Herbert Henry Couser of Litchfield, Minnesota.

Monday, March 20, 2023

Generation Three from the Thomas Couser Line

Generation 3 of the Couser line, descending from Thomas Couser, the fourth child of  Samuel Couser and Sarah (Waddle) Couser, is being featured in this blog. 

Most of the known descendants are from this line of the family.  This outline at left, then, is shown below  in its place in the Family Tree.

Generation 3 in the Couser Family Tree

1. William Couser   b:1779 (No. Ire.)  d: 1842, Acton Cemetery, Ballymore Parish, County Armagh, Northern Ireland
Sarah Waddle (Couser)   b:1781 (No. Ire.)   m:   ?    d: Aug. 21, 1847 (unmarked grave, Staten  Island, Richmond County, NY
----  2. Thomas Couser   b:   ?      d: age 2 (smallpox)
----  2. Samuel Couser   b: 1805   d: 1892
David Gray Couser, 7th child, Thomas Couser, Rachel Orr Couser
David Gray Couser  b: 1853
7th Child of Thomas & Rachel Couser
----  2. James Couser   b: 1807   d:    ?   
----  2. Thomas Couser  b: 1811   d: 1892
       +  Rachel Orr (Burns) Couser
---------- 3. William Henry Couser   b:  1841
---------- 3. Sarah Jane Couser   b: b: 1842
---------- 3. Mary Ellen Couser   b: 1844
---------- 3. John Burns Couser   b: 1845
---------- 3. Samuel Waddle Couser   b: 1847
---------- 3. John Thomas Couser   b: 1849
---------- 3. David Gray Couser   b: 1853
---------- 3. Susan Elizabeth Couser   b: 1854
---------- 3. Margaret Rachel Couser   b:1857
---------- 3. Nancy Haddassah Couser   b: 1859
---------- 3. Joseph Andrew Richie Couser   b: 1861
----  2. Sarah Couser   b: 1815   d: 1858
----  2. William Couser   b: 1815   d: 1847
----  2. Joseph Couser   b: 1819   d: 1850
----  2. Ellen Couser   b: 1821   d: 1903
----  2. Susan Couser   b: 1854   d: 1912
----  2. Nancy Couser   b: 1854   d: 1912

Joseph Andrew Richie Couser, 11th child, Thomas Couser, Rachel Orr Couser
Joseph Andrew Richie Family ca: 1941 / 1942

A Family Photo

Front row: Danny Couser, Mark Couser, Barbara Couser
Second Row (L-R): Faith Couser, Esther Couser, Joseph Andrew Richey Couser (11th child of Thomas & Rachel Couser) holding James on chair, Alice Couser, 2nd wife Elizabeth McKeever, Dick Couser
Back Row (L-R): David L, Don, Joseph, Amos, Cora, Quinter and wife, Thomas and wife, William and wife, Friend and wife, Jacob and wife, unknown
Photo taken circa 1941-42

Other Information Available

William Quinter Calvert (whose photo appeared in our first blog post), along with David Gray Couser (photo above), the 11th child of Thomas and Rachel (Orr) Couser, together created a book entitled "History and Records of the Couser Family." Click the link to find this book, saved in pdf. format. This book was translated down to a Family Tree format, listing both the information as held by the author of this blog, Robert James Couser, commonly known as "Bob," as well as all the information from the book itself, sometimes conflicting is names or dates, sometimes up to three different dates being given for the same event. All is presented in the Family Tree version. Please Click on this link to find the Family Tree.