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 • Preble County
 • Ohio
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Edward M. "Ed" Derr
Birth: Dec. 26, 1889
Clark County
Ohio, USA
Death: Dec. 12, 1919
Preble County
Ohio, USA

Ohio Cook Base Hospital 28


WW I Veteran

Thank You for visiting my dearest Uncle Ed. Your visit to this good and kind man is so very appreciated by our family. God bless.

NOTE: Edward M. Derr was born James Edward Derr, son of Noah and Henrietta Gorsuch Derr. It was my mistake of flipping the names in my own personal notes. At his adoption he was renamed Edward Meise Derr. Corrections have been made.

༻✿ Edward M. Derr was the son of Noah and Henrietta Gorsuch Derr, born to them in Selma, Ohio. The records state he was born on December 26, 1891, but the year was actually 1889. His mother passed shortly after his birth. He is the beloved brother to Dollie May Derr. Please note that Edward M. Derr born in 1881 is not Edward M. Derr who was born in 1889 as James Edward Derr. Edward M. Derr born in 1881 was the natural son by birth of Frederick and Sarah Derr, and his name was not changed. He passed in childhood. Somehow over time the 1881 Edward M. Derr's information has been applied to Edward M. Derr of the 1889, adoption to Frederick and Sarah in 1891, who was actually James Edward Derr born to Noah and Henrietta. Tho now he is known as Edward M. Derr. Please note that they are two totally different people, one born in 1881 and one born in 1889. Edward never married and had no children. He has always been fondly called Ed by family and friends. He was a quiet, serious, and kind man. He and his father were strong, tough men but they were nothing like the rough, mean, and rowdy men they describe as driving the Borax teams. They knew their jobs and did them well, and I'm sure they took no guff off of anyone along the way. They gave respect to others and expected nothing less in return.
When Uncle Ed was old enough he was hired to drive a 20 mule team for the Borax Company. My Uncle Jack (John "Jack" William Steinberger) said he was told Uncle Ed would sleep on the ground with nothing between him and the earth he slept on, preferring only the earth to sleep on. Grandma Alice said the family thought that may have been how he caught the deadly disease he died from. He made many trips out to Arizona and back again until he contracted tuberculosis and had to quit work. At this time he came home on his last trip from Arizona, worked for a time locally, and entered the Ohio Cook Base Hospital 28 to receive treatment, which often involved setting the patients out on cold drafty porches in the middle of winter for hours, as it was believed then that the cold fresh air would possibly cure them. He contracted pneumonia while in the hospital which proved too much for his body to fight and he succumbed to the ravaging disease of tuberculosis in December of 1919.
With both parents gone, his father dying of tuberculosis just around 4 years earlier in 1915, and few siblings left, there was no one who could afford to pay the hospital bill thus never informed where our beloved Edward had been buried. We searched high and low since looking for his resting place and could never find him.
Thanks to those of you, in particular Beverly, who take the time to traipse the many miles through thick and thin to register those buried in cemeteries across the world, we have finally found our most beloved Edward again. We now know where he is at rest and can now visit him. This was also partly possible because he was a WWI navy veteran and was provided a head stone of honor. Through the kindness of other's giving spirits we were able to locate our Uncle Ed. So those of you who take the time to search and log the cemeteries be assured every moment you spend is valuable and worth more than you can ever know. And, please, donate to the Veteran's Affairs. Without that donation and the stone they gave him we would have likely never found him and we have been looking as a family since December of 1919. God bless all who made it possible for us to find Uncle Ed.
And, most of all, thanks to those who make Find A Grave possible. Because of your caring and dedication we have found our lost loved one, Edward M. Derr.


May you now rest in peace Uncle Ed. Rest in the peaceful love of your family and God, forever in the arms of our Savior.


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Edward M. Derr
A Man of Many Complexities, the Saga Continues.
Thru the aid of Catherine (Prophit) Demers our family now knows as close to the whole story of our Uncle Ed as we are able to now come to as many of those involved are all gone. He was born James Edward Derr the son of Noah Derr and Henrietta Gorsuch Derr as stated above. My Grandma Dollie helped take care of him in his early years, but Noah soon needed more help by other family members in raising him, as he would have to leave the home for long periods of time in his work. We now know who he sought out for help: Frederick A. and Sarah Wolfe Derr. In 1891 they adopted Edward at the time and then possibly had him christened, thus the year of birth being changed from 1889 to 1891. In the census record book viewed on Ancestry I saw his age added as 4 years old in 1890. The census worker having rounded his age up from about 1 year and 6 months to 4 years old. This proves he was alive before 1891 and thus it is an adoption year. His time of birth was in 1889, as our family records state. On the site Catherine used they enter him as 9 years old while on Ancestry he was entered as 8 years old. The sloppy handwriting is actually as I can tell a 4. All three tho incorrect and at the census he could not have been born in 1891 as it is the 1890 census. Hmmm, some very sloppy record keeping. He lived with them until he was 18 years of age and returned on his own choice to Noah, his birth father. It has been said the family had fought over him as he was so sweet and so very loved by all involved. Certainly a case that would have ended up in the courts today with a judge determining who would have Edward.
Frederick and Sarah deserve their just recognition in raising Edward and in a sense were also his parents, tho in the end he had returned to Noah, his birth father and followed in his footsteps to work driving a mule team in the 20 mule teams for Borax. When Edward contracted tuberculosis he had just returned from Arizona feeling sick and settled into work here in Ohio. He could no longer keep up the rigorous pace of driving a mule team for the Borax company. Soon he had to enter the hospital in Dayton, Ohio and my G-Grandma Dollie Derr Steinberger had been listed as next of kin at the hospital by Edward, as Noah was now deceased, and on rare occasion Dollie was permitted to visit him. When he passed away she made arrangements and went to collect her beloved brother's body at the hospital in Dayton. On arrival she was told he was already gone and buried to her dismay and surprise. She asked where he had been buried and was told she was not privy to that information. She was not listed as next of kin by the family who had collected his remains. She told them her brother Ed had her listed as next of kin and that she had visited on several occasions. They said they did not have her in the hospital records as next of kin and they could not give her any information unless she wanted to pay the remaining few outstanding bills left by Edward's estate. With children of her own to raise she could not afford to do so. This began the search by her for Edward and where he was buried that was carried on by the family after her passing. By the death certificate provided by Catherine we were actually able to determine who in the family took in Uncle Ed as a child. It reveals their daughter Nellie (Bly) Derr O'Connel (The documenting of her name now slightly changed on her husband,s memorial to now suggest Bly is her middle name. A possibility.) had signed his death certificate and had gathered his remains and buried Edward in the cemetery with his adopted parents in Lewisburg, Ohio. She did this before Dollie could come in and claim her brother's body. Tho we see he is also her brother in a sense, so the complexities of his life continue to carry over into today in regards to his memory. I want to acknowledge Frederick and Sarah as adopted parents of Edward as well, as they certainly did love him and strove to raise him in the best way they saw fit. Their love and devotion to Edward deserves to be acknowledged. For that reason I am leaving his death certificate photo on his memorial.
If there are further changes or additions to my dear Uncle Ed's life journey I will add them to his memorial.
With love to all who over the passages of time have loved Edward M. Derr so dearly, a sweet man indeed. We may never know the entire actual story, but we do know we have found him and that many, many people have dearly loved Uncle Ed along the way. We love you still today Uncle Ed. God bless you and all the many lives you have touched.

Frederick and Sarah Derr also had four daughters and one son:
1) Jessie Derr, dying at a very young age,
2) Edward "Ed" M. Derr, 1881,
3) Treva Derr Stamback,
4) Nellie, mentioned above, and
5) Edith.


1) Dollie May Derr Steinberger,
2) Alice Powell Steinberger,
3) Meriel Steinberger Sterling,
4) John "Jack" William Steinberger, and
5) Ralph E. Steinberger
6) Beverly for info on the burial location and name of hospital.
7) Death certificate and name change in proof of adotion: Catherine (Prophit) Demers
8) Mary L. Sterling

Thank You to Suse-sniksnak for so lovingly adding the photos and such nice frames. Her devotion to our dearest Uncle Ed is much appreciated.

Copyright 2013 by Mary L. Sterling All personal materials, images, and data contained herein are not to be copied or down loaded for commercial purposes of duplication, distribution, or publishing without the express written permission of the owner. Information contained on this memorial is provided free for the purpose of aiding individuals doing genealogical research and to preserve family history.
Family links: 
  Noah Edward Derr (1841 - 1915)
  Henrietta S. Gorsuch Derr (1845 - 1889)
  James Andrew Derr (1865 - 1936)*
  Henry Clay Derr (1867 - 1930)*
  Clara Virginia Derr Shuirr (1870 - 1938)*
  George Washington Derr (1872 - 1937)*
  Arthur Hammock Derr (1877 - 1944)*
  Dollie May Derr Steinberger (1881 - 1929)*
  Noah Edwin Derr (1883 - 1928)*
  Edward M. Derr (1889 - 1919)
*Calculated relationship
Lower Lewisburg Cemetery
Preble County
Ohio, USA
Maintained by: Birdஐ
Originally Created by: Beverly
Record added: Apr 07, 2004
Find A Grave Memorial# 8611006
Edward M. Ed Derr
Added by: Little✿Birdஐ
Edward M. Ed Derr
Added by: Little✿Birdஐ
Edward M. Ed Derr
Added by: Little✿Birdஐ
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- Sandra
 Added: May. 10, 2016

- Robert Duran ~
 Added: Apr. 19, 2016

- Laura
 Added: Apr. 4, 2016
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