Saturday Mourning

Oscar Carl Widmann

Oscar Carl Widmann was the second son of John A. Widmann and Anna Christina Eckhoff. He was born on 2 May 1893 on the family farm near the community known as Riverside. This community was located at the corner of the present day State Highway 97 and County Highway T north of the bridge over the Little Eau Pleine River between Marshfield and Rozellville, WI. The farm is now located at M405 State Highway 97 – the former Widmare Stables.

Oscar was an intelligent boy and attended school at McKinley High School in Marshfield. During the school year, Oscar lived in Marshfield with his maternal aunt Christina “Tina or Teeny” Eckhoff Thuss and his uncle Willy Thuss. He stayed in town because the daily commute to and from school would have been impossible with the condition of the roads and the type of transportation available in the early 1900s.

In December of 1909, Oscar was home on the farm for Christmas. As Oscar’s youngest brother, Harold, tells it, “When I was born on 10 o’clock Christmas night…in the next few days, while Oscar was at home during the Christmas vacation -he had been living with Aunt Teeny and going to school at McKinley High School- and he came into Marshfield, how, I don’t know, I presume he had to walk in extremely bad weather to tell Aunt Teeny that I had arrived. And then of course he walked home and in doing so he took a bad cold which went into scarlet fever. My mother also had scarlet fever after. And so with that kind of news, Aunt Teeny and Uncle Willy rented a bob sled for someone to carry them out there to see about me and brought me back to town to live with them supposedly until my mother got well.  And a few days later Oscar died. That was the 4th of January.”

The tragic news of Oscar’s death made it in at least two of the local papers. The Marshfield Times and Wisconsin Hub reported that Oscar was “a bright ambitious young boy” and The Marshfield Times published the following:

The Marshfield Times, Marshfield, Wood County, Wisconsin, Wednesday, January 12 1910, Number 13

Oscar’s mother, Anna, did eventually recover from scarlet fever. Little Harold remained living in the home of Teeny and Willy Thuss – the couple were childless. Oscar is buried in Hillside Cemetery in Marshfield, WI.

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