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Obituary for Christina Gorgas Zerbe
Posted by: Kelly (ID *****9100) Date: July 05, 2006 at 23:22:57
  of 261

I'm not related to this family, but I found the following obituary for Christina Gorgas that was such a wonderful tribute, I just wanted to post it.
There is much more information related to this Gorgan family in Massillon, Ohio, so please let me know if there's anything in particular that anyone is looking for. One interesting thing related to this family is a picture of Mrs. William C. Gorgas from 1915. It says that it's a "new photo". I'd be glad to email it to anyone interested.

From The Massillon Independent, August 6, 1900
A Tribute to the Life of Mrs. Christina Zerbe
The following tribute to the memory of the late Mrs. Christina Zerbe, of Cleveland, a former resident of Massillon, was published in the Cleveland Leader of July 29:
In the passing away of Mrs. Christina Zerbe, there closes the life of a rare and lovely character, whose memory will ever be dear to those who loved and cherished her. To those who knew her but casually even, hers was a life marked for its strong individuality, lofty character, singleness of purpose, and devotion to family and friends.
Mrs. Zerbe was born in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, in 1813. Her father, Joseph Gorgas, was of Holland ancestry, descending from John Gorgas and Psyche Rittenhouse, aunt of David Rittenhouse, the scientist and patriot of the American revolution.
Her mother, Sophia Atkinson, descendant of Sir Francis Atkinson, of London, England, was born in Alexandria, Va. Mrs. Zerbe's ancestry being so intimately connected with early colonial history, rendered her eligible to membership in the Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, which association she joined some years ago.
Mrs. Zerbe was one of the ten children, all of whom are married, and of the twenty thus bound by family ties, but three still survive; the Rev. George Schlosser, of Paxton, Ill.; Mrs. Frances Vier Gorgas, of Shelbyville, Ind., widow of Solomon A. Gorgas, and Mrs. Amelia Gale Gorgas, widow of the late General Josiah Gorgas, of Tuscaloosa, Ala.
To this family have belonged several members of the legislative bodies of Pennsylvania and New York, among them being Hon. William Dorsheimer, Lieutenant Governor of New York, and member of Congress: William Gorgas, of Harrisburg, Pa., and the Hon. Chas. Albright, of Cambridge, O., who cast the first Republican vote in the American congress.
Mrs. Zerbe was married in 1834 to Jonathan Zerbe, a merchant in Osnaburg, O., who later in life associated as president of a Western bank and his nephews, the Kountze brothers, the banking firm of Omaha, Denver and New York.
Most of her married life was spent in Massillon, but after the death of her husband she removed to Cleveland, where she lived until life ended, July 17, 1900.
Mrs. Zerbe was the mother of seven children-a son deceased in infancy, the late Mrs. Edwin Bayliss, Mrs. James H. Hunt, and Mrs. J.P. Burton, of Massillon; and Mrs. George L. Case, Miss Ida Zerbe, and Mr. Jerome B. Zerbe, of Cleveland. Twelve grandchildren and four great-grandchildren also survive her.
We cannot close this history without some tribute, inadequate though it must needs be, to the personality of this noble and gifted woman.
Endowed with unusual mental qualities, her clear and strong intellect remained unclouded to the end. Nor yet did age rob her of the sweet dignity and beauty of face and form, nor the charm of gentle and gracious manners that were her always. It was the inestimable privilege of the writer to know Mrs. Zerbe intimately, and to sense deeply the richness and beauty of this long and active life. Hers was the soul of charity, which "suffereth long and is kind." Ever helpful, faithful, and gentle to those about her, she was exacting of justice, integrity, and honor, and no manner of deceit found foothold in her pure and upright nature.
Suffering found in her a ministering angel, and many are they who have been the recipients of her overflowing sympathy and generosity. Her whole life was characterized by an earnest christian faith, and not many hours before her death she said, "Jesus, my Redeemer, will be here tonight."
Indeed, so many are the virtues clustering around this beautiful character that the pen fails to record them fittingly. But surely we may add that in this long life of patient striving and serving, of faith, hope, and sweet serenity, of the abundant giving and grateful receiving in all that makes for happiness, those who survive her may find an inspiration and incentive to attain a like standard of excellence. In this her descendants possess a rich legacy.
So deeply cherished by her children, loved and revered by her friends, Christina Zerbe will live a sweet and precious memory in the hearts of all who knew her.

I hope this is helpful to somone!

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