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 Alpheus Ernest “Pete” Alderfer

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Alpheus Ernest “Pete” Alderfer

  • Birth 17 Nov 1892 Argos, Marshall County, Indiana, USA
  • Death 5 Jul 1965 Plymouth, Marshall County, Indiana, USA
  • Burial Culver, Marshall County, Indiana, USA
  • Memorial ID 80957767

Alpheus was the first of the eleven children born to John Oswald Alderfer and Delilah Ulrich, who married on 3 Oct 1891 in Marshall County, Indiana. Their eleven children were: Alpheus Earnest “Pete” (17 Nov 1892 – 5 Jul 1965); Ferd Delbert (24 Jun 1894 – 11 Feb 1961); (dau) Utincie (ca. 1897 – 12 Mar 1899); Lela A. (23 Oct 1898 – 18 Dec 1976), who married Neal V. Goff; Flossie Gertrude (12 Jun 1900 – 26 Nov 1992), who married George Loser; Ida Irene (19 Nov 1901 – 6 Jun 1988), who married James Smith; an unnamed infant (b./d. between 1900-1910); Clayton F. (1 Mar 1905 – 7 May 1990), who married Julia Putcharen; Jennings Bryan (22 May 1908 – 30 Dec 1987); Lodema F. (8 Mar 1911 – 10 Apr 1993), who married Lert Elmer Shidaker and (unknown) Johnson; and Ruth (14 Apr 1915 – 4 Jan 2000), who married Henry Kendall.

Just before the 1900 Census, the family lost daughter and sister Utincie. (From: The Argos Reflector, Argos, IN – Thu 16 Mar 1899 pg. 5) “The two-years-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Alderfer, of near Bethel church, died Saturday evening. The funeral was held at Bethel church Monday at 2 o’clock. Interment at the Bethel cemetery.”

I found Alpheus’ family on the 1900 Census, living in Walnut Township (Argos area), Marshall Co., Indiana. John Alderfer, aged 32, was noted as a day laborer. Lila (aka Delilah), aged 26, reported that she had had five children, but that only four had survived to that census, a sad reminder of the loss of two-year-old daughter Utincie a year earlier. There with their parents were Alpheus, aged 7, Ferdie, aged 5, Lela, aged 1, and Flossie, not yet a month old.

The family was still living in the Argos area when the 1910 Census came around. John Alderfer, aged 43, was farming. Lila, aged 36, reported that she had had nine children, but that only seven had survived to that census. There with their parents were Alpheus, aged 17, Ferd, aged 15, Lela, aged 11, Flossie, aged 9, Ida, aged 8, Clayton, aged 5, and Jennings, a month shy of being 2 years old.

Seven years after that census, the family lost husband and father John Alderfer on 7 Oct 1917, aged 50.

On his 15 Jun 1918 WWI registration, Alpheus, single, aged 24, reported that he was living in Argos, Indiana, and doing farm labor. He was described as being tall and slender, with blue eyes and brown hair.

The 1920 Census caught up with the family still living in Walnut Township. Head of household was Delilah Alderfer, widowed, aged 46. There with her were the eight children—Alpheus, aged 27, Ferd, aged 24, Flossie, aged 19, Ida, aged 17, Clayton, aged 14, Jennings, aged 11, Lodema, aged 8, and Ruth, aged 4.

On 11 Dec 1924, Alpheus’ mother Delilah married German immigrant George Mast. It was also a second marriage for George. He had previously married Reda Manona Thompson on 24 Oct 1915, and they had two daughters together—Annabelle and Georgia. That first marriage ended in divorce.

On 23 Sep 1922, Alpheus married Edna Louise Loser. (From: The Argos Reflector, Argos, IN – Thu 28 Sep 1922 pg. 1) “ALDERFER—LOSER Alpheus Alderfer and Miss Edna Loser were united in marriage last Saturday at the home of the bride’s brother in Fort Wayne. The bride is the daughter of Mrs. Edward Loser, living in the Poplar Grove neighborhood, and is a charming young lady. The groom is the oldest son of Mrs. John Alderfer living west of town. He was a member of the Argos band for a number of years and has a host of friends. The Reflector joins their many friends in wishing them well.” Two months after Edna married Alpheus, Edna’s brother George Loser married Alpheus’ sister Flossie Gertrude Alderfer on 14 Dec 1922.

Alpheus and Edna had two sons together—Harold Eugene (20 May 1927 – 7 Aug 1994), and Glen Edwin (29 Jun 1929 – 28 Oct 1989).

I found them on the 1930 Census, living in Union Township, Marshall Co., Indiana. Alpheus, aged 37, was busy farming. Edna, aged 26, was busy with their two young sons—Harold, aged 2, and Glen, aged 10 months. Living with the family was Alpheus’ 15-year-old sister Ruth.

The Alderfer’s lived in a small town with a local newspaper that often noted their family gatherings, especially during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. The family was clearly active in the community and their church.

They were in the same place when the 1940 Census came around. Alpheus (A.E. on the record), aged 47, was still farming. Edna, aged 36, was keeping house. There with her were sons Harold, aged 12, and Glen, aged 10. Alpheus’ sister Ruth, aged 25, was also still living with the family.

On his 27 Apr 1942 WWII registration, Alpheus, aged 49, reported that he was farming and living in rural Union Township in Marshall County. Wife Edna was noted as that person who would always know his address. He measured in at 5’ 10” tall, and weighed in at 160 lbs. His eyes were still blue, his hair still brown. Noted was “left index finger off at first joint”. Ouch!

Alpheus and Edna’s sons both married, and in 1955, there was happy news. (From: The Argos Reflector, Argos, IN – Thu 10 Mar 1955 pg. 8) “Mr. and Mrs. A.E. Alderfer visited their new granddaughter, Judy Lynne, in La Porte Sunday afternoon. She was born on Saturday to Mr. and Mrs. Harold Alderfer.”

Alpheus lived to aged 72, dying on 5 Jul 1965. Edna lived another twenty-one years without her helpmate and companion, passing into the light on 26 Jul 1986 at age 82.





  • Created by: Kim White
  • Added: 25 Nov 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 80957767
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Alpheus Ernest “Pete” Alderfer (17 Nov 1892–5 Jul 1965), Find A Grave Memorial no. 80957767, citing Poplar Grove Cemetery, Culver, Marshall County, Indiana, USA ; Maintained by Kim White (contributor 47499959) .