I recently visited Rittersville Cemetery, St. Peter’s United Church of Christ on North Tacoma Street in Allentown, Pennsylvania. I wanted to find Michael Ritter, the founder of Rittersville. The day was gray and I had no cemetery map but I was hoping to find Ritter relatives. I had my camera and started to systematically walk up and down each row of graves. I walked carefully, not wanting to miss a Ritter tombstone and yet trying to avoid the many holes in the grounds.
My second great grandmother, Elidia Rebecca (Ritter) Mark, 1854 – 1912, is my closest direct connection to the Ritters. She was the daughter of Isaac and Isabell (Fisher) Ritter. That branch of the Ritters lived in Ohio.
|William D Ritter|
I did find Michael Ritter. His tombstone, like many surrounding his stone, was very worn and difficult to read. Fortunately his name remains readable. I found two of his sons and their families. His son Charles J Ritter, 11 June 1871 – 30 October 1919, was with his wife, Ida J Ritter, 10 August 1871 – 22 January 1943, and their daughter Sabina C Ritter, 17 March 1905 – 14 February 1919. Son, Thomas Ritter, 9 May 1808 – 27 Nov 1883, was with his wife, Anna M. Ritter, 29 October 1802 – 30 August 1881, and their daughter Sarah M Ritter, 26 November 1833 – 15 November 1918, and their son, Asher Thomas Ritter, 5 September 1835 – 14 May 1862.
I photographed over two dozen Ritter tombstones. William D Ritter, 24 July 1822 – 30 October 1874, was a Civil war soldier and has a flag flying by his final resting place. I cannot yet connect them all up at this time but I am confident that they do connect. You can see many of my photos on my website. I also posted photos on the Ritterville Cemetery website.
Thanks go out to Robert Rinebold, his Rittersville website and his helpful emails. He gave me directions in locating the cemetery and tips to find Michael Ritter’s tombstone. Robert has helped me on more than one occasion with my research with this family branch. Thanks to Karen Ritter Burlet who helped me connect Michael Ritter to the original Ritters who came here from Germany in 1732. She has sent me great information with sources. Thanks also to Larry Knox who first introduced me to the Ritters several years ago. Genealogists are a friendly and helpful group!