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Magdalena (Martha) (Zook) Smoker, 1850s, earlier, Smithville, Ohio.
Posted by: Reid Smucker (ID *****3675) Date: August 16, 2006 at 10:47:52
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I am interested in learning what I can of the ancestry or early experience of my great-great-great grandmother, Magdalena (Zook) Smoker, who apparently went by Martha (as one, at least, census indicated, as I recall.)
I am aware already of the following: that she was born (somewhere) around the 1830s, married Gideon Smoker of (near) Smithville, Ohio in the late 1850s; she gave birth to nine children, the first of which was J.M. Smucker, founder of the Company that is famed for its brand of preserves and jellies, as well as a number of other brands now; the youngest of her children was apparently named after her, but died at around 6 months in 1876, then to be followed by the mother, this Magdalena, on Oct. 3 of that year. A very breif obituary can be read online in the (Mennonite)Gospel Herald. She is memorialized with a perfectly legible, but perhaps unremarkable tombstone (the original having been replaced in the 20th century some time,) in Oak Grove Cemetary, Smithville. A portrait photograph of she and Gideon her husband exists and I have a copy. An early award winning label for Smucker's Apple Butter, produced by her son's company around the 1930s, pictures an 1876 cooking scene that features -- though not with any special detail as to her aspect -- a woman. Her son J.M. (1858-1948) was still an active, though semi-retired, president in the 1930s. I know nothing else about that label -- whether this lady of Zook origin should be thought memorialized by this label or not. But the image appears to have been a standard company image for several decades. It can still be seen on the street signage for one of the company's factories.
What I hope to know, beside more about her which would be great, is anything about her parents, siblings, and especially where they lived and anything about them; and perhaps a generation or few back from them... any learning connecting her to the experience of Wayne County Amish would be much appreciated, -- info. other than that she was one, at least per marriage, which I presume. Have not been able to find detail other than (as I recall) something vague -- some names -- on, of which I am at present only slightly a customer. I want to know where she came from, as much as one might. Thanks for reading, and hope this message serves some purpose for you.

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