Sunday, September 23, 2012

N is for Nana, Salome Knecht

     It is difficult to think of someone who died at the young age of 22 years as a grandmother!   Yet she was the mother of three children before she died.

Salome's  grave stone is located at the Moorestown Cemetery, Moore Twp., Northampton Co., Pennsylvania in the old yard at Salem Church.  It is a flat white stone with her name clearly and easily  readable.  It stood as a beacon among a field of beautiful pink flowers  on the spring day when I located the grave.   Salome was only 22 and 1/2 years old when she died December 16, 1825, just three weeks after the birth of her son Charles.  Her stone is in the same row as those of her parents.  It is visible from a distance and is in the lower  center of the graveyard.  The stone is inscribed  in German. 
 Salome Gunkel ehetran van George Gunkel 
Geboren den 28th Mertz 1803  
Gestorben den 16 December 1825 
Alt 22 Yaren 6 Monat und 18 Tagen.  

Which translates  Salome Kunkle, wife of George Kunkle, born  March 28, 1803, died Dec. 16, 1825. 22 years, 6 months and 18 days.

The birth record for Salome Knecht is located in the  Moorestown Church records.  The record states;   Knecht, Salome, born May 28, 1803, baptised July 3, 1803.   Parents are Leonhard Knecht and his wife Christina.  Sponsors are Peter Stekkel and wife Maria.  

        Grave stones of Salome's parents, Leonard Knecht and Christina Schott Knecht.

When she was 19 years old,  Salome married George Kunkel on April 7, 1822.  She soon became the mother of three children born very close together.   They were:  Lea  who was born Dec. 17,  1822, Katherine who was born  Oct. 8, 1824,  and Charles who was  born Nov. 24, 1825.  Salome died soon after the birth of Charles, most likely from complications of child birth.   "The KNECHT Family History, 1702-1987," by Linda Klosek,  provides proof that Charles is the son of George & Salome (Knecht) Kunkel.    Charles  was baptised  on  December 18,  1825 by Rev. Mendsen at the  Salem Lutheran / Reformed Church, Moore Twp., Northampton Co., Pennsylvania.  His mother died on Dec. 16, 1825.  It is likely that he was baptised the day she was buried.

Salome's father provided for these children in his will, 1836.  In the will,  Leonard Knecht states, "Salome who had been  intermarried with George Kunkle  who  since departed  her life,  her share I give  and bequeath  unto  her  two  children  Charles and  Catherine."   Lea  had since died.  

It is  amazing that  the infant Charles  survived after the death of his mother!   Some unknown woman had to have nurtured and fed him.  Whomever she was we  are thankful to her for  providing Charles  with life sustaining  nutrition.   Salome's  son  Charles  was the grandfather of Estella, whom you met earlier.
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  1. What a beautiful tribute to your Nana. The flowers around the headstones make the cemetery look very peaceful, and a nice place to be.

  2. Hello :)
    I love this, Salome Knecht was my 4th Great Grandmother (through Katherine Kunkle). I affectionately refer to Katherine as Katy Kunkle. :) The pictures on your blog are amazing! Thanks for doing this.

  3. Tricia, Thank you. I am pleased to be able to do this tribute to her. Salome's story and this picture of her gravestone is one of my favorites. Life was so very hard for women back then.