According to information found on the census of 1900 , Theresa and her family immigrated to America in 1882. And indeed, we have found a reference to the passenger list she and several of her siblings arrived aboard.
On the same ship when it arrived was her sister Agnes, and brothers Bernard and William (Guillaume). Theresa was born on 11 Dec 1869 (according to her grave stone), in Baden to Mathias and Anna Maria (Schlagater) Ott.
It appears that Mathias made the journey to America ahead of the family, presumably to secure work and a place to live before their arrival.
Theresa was born on 11 Dec 1869 (according to her grave stone), in Gammertingen, Hohenzollern, Prussia to Mathias and Anna Maria (Schlagele) Ott.
We were able to trace the family back two generations before Mathias and Anna Maria. The following are screen shots of marriage records found on FamilySearch (We recommend setting up a free account).
According to the obituary for Mathias Ott (Jan 1834-10 Dec 1909), he was initially a resident of Allentown where he was a member of the St. Joseph’s Beneficial Society, before settling in Reading. Theresa first appears in the directory for the city of Reading, PA in 1890 living in the house of her brother-in-law and sister, Magnus and Agnes Ott at 1218 Chestnut St. Her listed occupation is weaver. One year later her father is listed in the directory at 1224 Cotton St. and his occupation is listed as shoe maker. It is possible Mathias was self employed, though there was a shoe factory by the name of C. H. Rickert just a 15 minute walk from their home, as well. In 1893, Theresa is listed as occupying the same house with her father at 1224 Cotton. This would be the situation until 1895 when Theresa would marry Edward Wisser on 02 May at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Reading.
Reading Times, Thursday, May 2, 1895
Marriage Licenses Granted. These marriage licenses were granted yesterday: Edward A. Wisser, 406 Ridge avenue, and Theresa Ott, 1224 Cotton street…
Reading Times, Friday, May 3, 1895
Edward A. Wisser, wire worker,Allentown, and Miss Theresa Ott, daughter of Matthias Ott, 1224 Cotton street, were married by Rev. Father Bornemann in St. Paul’s Catholic church. They were attended by a sister of the bride and a brother of the groom.
Edward and Theresa were the parents of five sons: Joseph, Alfred, George, Bernard P., Sylvester (who died at ten weeks) and two daughters: Mary and Matilda.
In 1900 Theresa and Edward moved to 431 Tilghman St. in Allentown, PA and there operated a grocery store for about a decade. The census of 1900 shows the family so engaged.
About 1910, Theresa and Edward purchased a farm on Fire Lane and Seidersville Road in Bethlehem. Theresa would live out her remaining years at the farm. Theresa died on Christmas Eve, 1918 at the age of 49.
The Allentown Democrat, Thursday, December 26, 1918
Mrs. Edward Wisser, nee Ott, aged 49 years, of Seidersville, died Tuesday evening of pleurisy. She had been ill for about a week. She. was born and reared in (???), her maiden name being Theresa Ott. Her father and mother are both dead. Her husband’s brother, W. H. Wisser, resides at 641 North Fourth St., this city. There survive her husband Edward and these children: Joseph, Bernard, Mary, Alfred, ‘ Tillie and George. These brothers and sisters also survive: Mrs. Agnes Ott, Reading; Casper Ott, North St., Allentown; Bernard and William Ott. Reading. The funeral will be held on Saturday morning in the church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and interment will be made, in the Holy Sepulchre cemetery.
Below are the obituaries for Mathias Ott, Mary Ann Ott (03 April 1902) and Magnus Ott (09 Feb 1916). In a piece of synchronicity, the entry for Mathias continues in the 2nd column under an advertisement for S. S. Wisser .
Text of above obituary for Mathias Ott:
MATTHIAS OTT. Matthias Ott died at 2.30 a. m. Friday at the residence of his son – in – law, Magnus Ott, 1218 Chestnut street after an illness of two days from pneumonia. His age was 75 years, 10 months and 25 days. He was a native of Hohenzollern, Germany, and came to this country 27 years ago. He has been a resident of this city for 19 years. Deceased was a shoemaker by trade. He was a member of St. Paul Roman Catholic church, this city, and of St. Joseph’s Beneficial Society, Allentown, where he formerly 138 lived. He is survived by three sons: Caspar, Philadelphia; Bernard, this city, and William, Mt. Holly, N. J.; two daughters, Mrs. Magnus Ott, this city, and Mrs. Edward Wisser, Allentown and one brother who resides in Germany.
Reading Times, Saturday, July 15, 1939
OTT In this city, on the 14th inst.. Agnes, widow of Magnus Ott, aged 74 years, 8 months, 24 days. Relatives and friends, also the members of the Holy Family, are invited to attend the funeral, without further notice, from her late residence. 1218 Chestnut St.. on Monday morning at 8.30, at the house. Requiem High Mass In St. Paul’s Catholic Church at 9 o’clock. Interment, St. Peter’s . Catholic Cemetery. Friends may call at the residence on Sunday evening.
Access to the death certificate for Mathias Ott has given us the name of his father, Peter Ott.
Here are interesting questions. How did Agnes Ott, who lived in Allentown, meet Magnus Ott who lived in Reading? How did Theresa, who relocated to Reading, meet Edward who lived in Allentown? In the case of Magnus and Agnes it is reasonable to speculate that the social institutions to which Magnus belonged provided any number of opportunities. Both fire companies (parades, etc.) and singing clubs (concerts) were known to travel. People of the time traveled easily from county to county by train. In the case of Edward and Theresa, it is almost certain that the Otts and Wissers were acquainted while both families were in Allentown, most probably while attending the same church (Sacred Heart-Allentown).
NOTE: CLICK ON ANY IMAGE TO ENLARGE.
* Notes on the brothers of Theresa Ott
George Ott (1863-1901)
Married to Barbara Hausch. Occupation:Shoemaker
Reading Times, Tuesday, September 17, 1901
THE READING OBITUARY.
GEORGE OTT. George Ott, formerly of Reading, died of a complication of diseases at his home, in Allentown, Sunday, aged 38 years. Deceased was ailing for some time. He was born In Germany and was a son of Matthias and Anna Ott, 1224 Cotton street. He was a shoemaker by trade and was employed at Leh & Co.’s shoe factory, Allentown. many years. He left Reading I8 years ago. Besides his parents, his ,wife, Barbara, and four children remain, together with two sisters, Agnes, wife of Magnus Ott, of Reading, and Mrs. Theresa Wisser. of Allentown, and these brothers. Casper. Bernhard and Wilhelm Ott. all of Reading. Deceased was a member of the German Catholic church, of Allentown.
The Allentown Leader, Monday, September 16, 1901
DEATH OF GEORGE OTT. . George Ott of 118 Tilghman Street died Sunday evening from a complication of diseases. He was a finisher at Leh and Co (shoe and boot) factory for a number of years. He is survived by his parents. his wife . Barbara, four daughters; Agnes, Annie, Mary and Theresa; three brothers, Casper, Bernard and William of Reading, and Mrs. Magnus Ott and Mrs, Wisser. He was a member of St. Joseph’s Society of the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
ABOVE: The graves of George Ott, his wife Barbara (nee Hausch) and their daughter Anna M Ott at Sacred Heart Cemetery, Fullerton, Pennsylvania.
Casper Ott ( Jan 1876-March 1937)
Married to Rose H Schmidt, daughter of Alois and Emma Schmidt. Their children were Mary, Rita (wife of Michael Bobek of Catasauqua), and Joseph W. of Allentown.
The Allentown Democrat, Friday, February 4, 1916
PRETTY WEDDING IN SACRED HEART CHURCH
The wedding; of Miss Rose, daughter of Alois and the late Emma Smith of 410 Ridge Ave., and Casper Ott, formerly of Reading, now living in this city, took place yesterday at a nuptial mass in the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The ceremony was performed by Monsignor Peter Masson at 9 o’clock. The bride was attired In a. creation of white crepe-de-chine. She wore a wreath and veil and carried a white prayer book. The bridesmaid was Miss Agnes Ott, a sister of the-bridegroom. She wore a gown of pink crepe-de-chine and carried a bouquet of pink carnations. Six-year-old Catherine Duke was the flower girl. Robert Andreas, a cousin of the bride, was best man. Following the ceremony the ‘bridal party returned to the home of the bride where a wedding breakfast was served. The happy young couple left on a short honeymoon to New York City and other .points of interest. Upon their return they will move into their newly furnished home, 412 North St. Mr. and Mrs. Ott are well known in this city. For the past two years Mr. Ott has been employed in the drop-forging department of the Bonney Vise & Tool Co.
Reading Times, Tuesday, March 16, 1937
CASPER OTT, 62, native of Germany, died of a heart attack at his home in ALLENTOWN. Mr. Ott, a son of the late Mathias and Anna Ott, came to this country from Germany 55 years ago. He lived for a short time in Reading. : He was a member – of Sacred Heart Church, the St. Francis Beneficial Society and the Workingman’s Sick and Death Benefit Society. Surviving are his widow, Rose (Smith) Ott; three children, Mary, Helen, Rita Ann and Joseph William, all at home; two brothers and one sister, William Ott, Bernard Ott and Agnes Ott, all of Reading. Funeral at 9 a. m. Wednesday from his home, with requiem high mass at 9:30 o’clock in the Church of the Sacred Heart. Interment in Sacred Heart cemetery.
Bernard Ott (1878-1943)
Married to Rose M. Wummer. Their children were Marie R., John B., Francis W., and Raymond A.
Owned and operated a Ott’s Dry Goods store and Ott’s Oyster House (1940 census) in Reading, Berks.
William J Ott (born Feb 1881)
Wife: Mary Hasson. Occupation: Cigar Maker; Proprietor Retail candy and novelty store. No known descendants.
Reading Times, wednesday, May 8, 1912
Marriage Licenses Charles M. Nester, laborer, and Katie H. Conrad, both’ of Bechtelsville, No. 1, . . Isaac Marks, clerk, 730 Chestnut street, and Charlotte Price, 819 Douglass street. William J. Ott, cigarmaker, 314 North Eleventh street, and Mary M. Hasson, cigarmaker, 1017 Cotton street.
Reading Times, Friday, May 10, 1912
St. Peter’s Catholic Church was the scene of a pretty wedding Thursday at 7,80 a. m. when Miss Mary M. Hasson, daughter or James and Valeria C. Hasson, 1017 Cotton street, became the bride of William J. Ott, son of Matthias and Annie Ott, 314 North Eleventh street. The couple were united in marriage at a nuptial mass, which was celebrated by Father Edward Lyr.g (sic), assistant rector of the church,. ln the presence of many friends and relatives. A niece of the bride, Miss Frieda Hasson, was bridesmaid and Caspar Ott, of Philadelphia, brother of the groom, was best man. The bride was attired in white embroidery and carried roses. The bridesmaid wore white silk and carried roses. Many relatives and friends attended the reception which was held at the residence of the bride’s parents. Out of town guests were present from Philadelphia, Allentown and Lorane. The couple were the recipients of numerous wedding gifts. They will live at the Cotton street address. Mr. Ott is a cigarmaker employed at Tenth and Penn streets.