What One Obituary Doesn’t Tell, the Other Does. Abraham Auxer, Beloved Son and Brother

The Obituary:

Harrisburg, Feb 15, 1873

AUXER-On February 13, 1873, ABRAHAM AUXER, in the 24th year of his age.

We heard his sufferings, heard his sighs,
With throbbing hearts and weeping eyes,
But now he calmly sleeps at rest,
All pain, all grief and suffering past.

The relatives and friends of the deceased are respectfully invited to attend the funeral from the residence of his parents on Boas street above Elder, on Sabbath, the 16th inst., at ten o’clock a.m.  Services in the Fourth street Bethel.

The Story:

The thing is, we really don’t know the story!

Abraham Auxer was the youngest child born to my great-great-great grandparents, Philip K. and Maria Leader Auxer.  He was born into a family with four older sisters.  Another son had died years before when the child was less than a year old.  Years after Abraham’s death, one of his sisters, Catharine, still mentioned him from time to time in her diary.

We know he lived, worked in the Car Shops, as did his father, and was planning on getting married.  He was well loved by his family and is buried with them.

What we do know, is the sensitive side of Abraham, and we know that only from an obituary that was published in the Church of God Newspaper* a month after his death.

The Second Obituary:

AUXER. February 13th, in Harrisburg, Abraham Auxer, in the 24th year of his age

Bro Auxer was awakened some four years ago by the sudden death of a young Christian lady of the church and of his acquaintance, and he became the subject of converting grace.  He united with the church in this city soon after under the labors of J.C. Owens.  After the opening of the west Harrisburg mission he identified himself with that work, where he remained faithful at his post as an officer until prostrated by sickness.  He was cheerfully submissive to the divine will during his illness, and while passing through the dark valley and across the narrow stream he helped to sing “I’m going home to die no more.”  The only son in family of six children, and shrouded in his intended wedding suit, he is greatly mourned, but as they are all Christians they can say:

“Thou art gone, but we will not deplore thee;
For God was thy ransom, they guardian and guide.
He gave thee, he took thee, and he restored thee,
And death has no sting, for the Saviour hath died.”

His funeral was largely attended in the bethel on Sabbath, the 16th inst, by the I.O.O.F., Knights of Pythias and companions of the car shops in all of which he was an active worker.  Services by the writer:

D.A.L. Laverty.


He is buried in Harrisburg Cemetery, next to his parents, grandmother and in the shadow of his sister and her husband.

*The Church Advocate, Lancaster PA., March 5, 1873.

Published in: on November 13, 2008 at 9:08 pm  Comments (1)  
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