John Peter Karkheck was one of five children and was born in Hanover, located in Lower Saxony in northwestern Germany, on 10 October 1830. His parents were John P. Karkheck, who was born in 1794 and died in 1836, and Mary (Kanselmeier). John started working as a farm hand on his father’s farm at age sixteen and then at the age of twenty-two he immigrated to the United States. He left Germany on the 19th of May 1852 and arrived in the U.S. forty-nine days later. He married his first wife M. C. Teachen in New York City in 1853 and she was born in c. 1826. M.C. stands for Margaret Catherine in the English records and Metha (Meta) Catharine was used in the German records. Meta is a variant of Margaret.
Meta died on 21 July 1878 at the age of 52 years, 4 months and 9 days. She is buried in the Lutheran Cemetery in Middle Village N.Y. (St. Paul’s German Records), today known as Lutheran All Faiths Cemetery.
In the 1896 Portrait and Biographical Record of Queens County New York published by Chapman Publishing in the article on John P. Karkheck it states that he had nine children with M.C. Teachen. The research only found information on five of the nine children and they are listed below.
After arriving in the U.S. his first job was working in a sugar refinery for fourteen months. He then went to work for his brother-in-law who was in the grocery business for about fifteen months. He next purchased a charcoal route which he pursued for seven more years. With the money earned on the charcoal route he then moved to Astoria and leased some land which he farmed for an additional seven years. In1867 he purchased his own farm located in Jamaica on Springfield Road south of Central Ave. The farm is listed as 40 acres in the 1870 Productions of Agricultural Census. John retired from active farming in 1891and left a portion of his farm in charge of his son Henry. Henry continued farming this portion until his father’s death in 1900.
John and Meta were active members in the St. Paul’s German Presbyterian Church in Fosters Meadow. They became members on the11th of April 1873. Mr. Karkheck was listed as a church trustee in 1888. John was later elected an Elder for a three term in December 1895. He was re-elected for a second three year term in January 1898. In the October Minutes of Session of 1898 he was appointed to attend the Presbytery of Nassau meeting to be held at the Freeport Presbyterian Church in April of 1899.
John married his second wife Mrs. Johanna Kath (Catherine) Wahl from Württemberg Germany on 25 January 1885 (St. Paul’s German Records). Mrs. Wahl was born c. 1834 and died 24 December 1894 (Sappelt list).
Note: Catherine Wahl was first married to John Jacob Wahl. John was run over with the cars at the Willow Tree Station near Jamaica and died on 23 September 1878 (St. Paul’s Records). A son named Edward was living with his mother at the time of her marriage to John Karkheck.
Note: The Sappelt List is contained in the The Robert Sappelt Collection located under the archives tab of the Fosters Meadow web site.
John was living with his son Henry when he died on 4 Dec 1900 (Sappelt List) and his estate went into probate in 1901. He had three properties that were auctioned off on December 13, 1902. Parcel No. 1 (original Farm) consisted of 40 acres on the east side of Springfield Road. Parcel No. 2 consisted of 53 acres on the west side of Springfield Road. Parcel No. 3 contained about 10 acres of first class meadow land at Three Mile Mill, South Jamaica. The auction notice was reported in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle 7 December 1902.
The children of John and Meta are below.
John and Hoffmeir (Annie) were married on 5 November 1879 (Sappelt List). John worked as hotel keeper. Annie J. Hoffmeir: born c. 1856 - died: 5 October 1896
The children of John and Annie:
Since their parents both died John P. Karkheck (the grandfather) on November 7 1896 was appointed legal guardian for Annie and James Karkheck ages 10 and 6 respectively. Brooklyn Daily Eagle 6 Nov 1896.
Note: newspaper article has John P. listed as James in error.
John Sr. and his grandchildren Annie and John P. were all living with John Sr.’s son Henry and his wife Mary from the late 1890’s. The
grandchildren continued to live with their aunt and uncle after their grandfather’s death in 1900.
Anna married Charles Steneck on 4 February 1877. Anna became a member of St. Paul’s Church on 11 April 1873. Charles is listed as working as a laborer. Charles Steneck: born c. 1850 - unknown
The children of Anna and Charles:
Caroline H. Lorbach: born in Oct 1855 and died in 1925 and is also buried in the St. Paul’s Church Cemetery
The children of Herman and Caroline:
Ludwig (Louis) Heiss – c. 1857 Baiern (Bavaria) – 3 March 1885
The children of Wilhelmine and Louis:
An infant child named Minnie Heiss was born in March of 1898 and was living with her Uncle Herman and Aunt Caroline in 1900. Wilhelmine Heiss dies on 28 March 1898 from pneumonia (St. Paul’s records). It would appear that Minnie’s mother Wilhelmine died from complications of childbirth.
Henry married Mary Wahl 14 October 1883 (Sappelt List). Mary was born in February 1865. Her maiden name is listed as Maria Ernestine Wahl of Valley Stream in the St. Paul’s Church records. Henry was a farmer working on his father’s farm until his father passed away in 1900. He rented farmland from his father’s estate until the probate auction in December 1902. In 1910 while living on Merrick Road in Springfield he worked as a gardener and at odd jobs. Henry was actively involved in the Young Farmers Light Guard from around 1897 until 1914. He first served as the treasurer for about seven years and then served as captain until 1914. Henry is buried at St. Paul’s church cemetery. Maria (Mary) E. Wahl: Born Feb. 1865 – died 1944.
Note: Information on Young Farmers Light Guard is in the Fosters Meadow website under the History tab, Young Farmers Light Guard.
The children of Henry and Mary:
Submitted by George Bauer