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Cape Central High Photos

Ken Steinhoff, Cape Girardeau Central High School Class of 1965, was a photographer for The Tiger and The Girardot, and was on the staff of The Capaha Arrow and The Sagamore at Southeast Missouri State University. He worked as a photographer / reporter (among other things) at The Jackson Pioneer and The Southeast Missourian.

Come here to see photos and read stories (mostly true) about coming of age in Southeast Missouri in the 1960s.

Please comment on the articles when you see I have left out a bit of history, forgotten a name or when your memory of a circumstance conflicts with mine. (My mother says her stories have improved now that more and more of the folks who could contradict her have died off.) Your information helps to make this a wonderful archive and may end up in book form.


“Little German Church”

Trinity Methodist Church Delta 02-12-2013_2185The sign in front of the plain, white church on Hwy N, two miles northeast of Delta (before the N.U.T. intersection), reads “Trinity Methodist Church” – “Little German Church.”

It looks like the foundation is made of field stones stacked atop each other with a little mortar to keep them in place.

What history he saw

Trinity Methodist Church Delta 02-12-2013_2172

I was amazed at the birth and death dates on Fritz Bock’s tombstone: the man was born before the Civil War and died in the middle of World War II. THAT’S a set of bookends you don’t see often.

I don’t know any of the church’s history, but the FindAGrave website has a pretty complete listing of the burials behind the building.

Little German Church photo gallery

Click on any photo to make it larger, then click on the left or right side of the image to move through the gallery.

15 comments to “Little German Church”

  • susan montgomery smith

    I love the inscription on the Bock’s tombstone…lovely. More wonderful photos from you. Thanks!

  • Roslyn (Ticer)Kline

    Thank you ! This is my family ! the Bocks were my Great Grandparents ! I always thought their tombstone was so beautiful ! Charles Moore is a great uncle also ! There is another one that looks like a tree truck with rope holding the the name and statistics.
    I think his name was Sparfelt. Not quite sure but I think he was my Great Grandmother’s father.
    the Little German church has or used to have reunions down there.I have pictures of inside the church.

  • Delores Langston Dietrich

    Went to a annual picnics with my grandparents at this church and have relatives buried in the cemetery. Great memories. Thank you for the picture.

  • Cleo Ticer Slagle

    Thank you so much for these pictures. This is the first church that I remember being in, it was for my Great-Grandfather’s funeral when I was around 5 years old. Enjoy all of your pictures and articles……..Thank you again.

  • Roslyn Kline

    Thanks for finding the Sparfeld tombstone ! That is the one I was remembering. I am going to send this our relatives (Bock) in Germany !

  • Samantha Kluesner

    This is a very neat little church. I have been here a few times to look at the architecture and the graveyard. It is such a shame that the exterior is covered up with vinyl siding.

  • This little church with the gravestone´s was a highlight of my visit 2009 to the Descendant of the emigrant John II Bock born 22. Nov. 1824 in Berel, Germany. His son Fritz married 1891 the widow Clara Sparfield. I have never seen picture on the gravestone. Fritz was born by Tilsit, Missouri. Here are his father John gravestone. If you have time looked for him. St. James United Church of Christ est. 1843.

    Eike Bock, Berel, Germany
    born on the same area as the emigrant John II

  • Here the story of Clara´s Sparfeld parents:
    Carl and Friedericke and one daughter, Marie Friedericke Cornelia, left Yesnitz, Germany for America in May, 1864 and arrived on June 24, 1864 on the ship “Hansa” at New York. He was 34 years old and his wife was 35. Cornelia, theier daughter was 9 month old. After arrriving in St. Louis they settled for a while and had several children, but I do not know how many children, out of seven, were born in St. Louis, Missouri, or do I know how many were born in Southeast Missouri.
    Carl brother, Friederick August and his wife, Sophia F. (Baerwald) Sparfeld came to America in May 1867 on the ship “Hermann”. this family stayed in St. Louis, Missouri and reared their family.

    Vera Mae Birk born Bock has writing a chronicle over the Sparfeld = Sparfield

    Eike Bock, 38272 Berel, Germany

  • Gary Bock

    I too have many memories of The Little German Church. I grew up two miles away. I remember the picnics and the crowd that came. Fritz and Clara Bock were my great grandparents, also. I have several relatives buried there. The German Church Association that oversees the building, cemerty and the old picinic grounds have worked hard to preserve this place for the coming generations. I appreciate the good job they do as volunteers.

  • Mariesa Crader Lesch

    The Little German Church trustees open the church every year in late September or early October. It is such a special place. Every year the church bells are rang, and folks gather in respect for all who have gone before. Monetary gifts can be made to Charles King or Margaret Poinsett in Chaffee.

  • A photo of Fritz and Clara Bock and their family and neighbors in 1911 can be found on the following site:

    http://www.berel-am-ries.de/seiten/Auswanderer/Ausw–Bock.htm

    This site from Berel, Germany, documents many families who immigrated from the small village of Berel to the Cape Girardeau area in the mid-1800’s. Thanks to Eike Bock from Berel who helped me trace my Vasterling ancestors. Eike documented the Vasterling family on this page of the website:

    http://www.berel-am-ries.de/seiten/Auswanderer/Ausw-Pape-Vasterling.htm

    All of the 55 gravestones in the cemetery by the Little German Church can be viewed at this site below, thanks to Marlene Smith of Marble Hill.

    http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gsr&GScid=2467983

  • Michael Graham

    I have driven by this church many times over the years doing business in Delta and Whitewater, Missouri. My ancestors were Fritz and Sophia (Leikfet) Vasterling. They were from Berel, Germany and landed in Cape Girardeau area in 1846 & lived out s. of Jackson at the end of Hwy PP. in 1860 they moved to Le Seuer, MN were he obtained a license from the state of MN to practice medicine. Prairie Dr. V. died in 1905. His son, Fritz, served w/ the Illinois 2nd Li Artillory company F at Shiloh, “with distinction”. Married Josephine Heitmaneck at St. V De Paul in 1861. Lived in Cape, bar keep at Vasterling Tavern till 1870 when he moved to St Louis.

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