Christian Henry Looser was born 2 April 1847 in Berghuelen, Germany. He was the son of Jeorg Christian Looser (1811–1858) and Anna Mary Huber (1812–1871). Christian immigrated to the United States with his parents as one of four surviving children of the ten born in Germany: Ursula (Landolin Schneider), 1839–1921; Anna (John Wilson), 1840–1899; Anna Maria “Mary” (Herman Soerensen), 1843–1889; and Christian. The family emigrated from Bremen in August 1852 and arrived in New York City on 1 October 1852 aboard the ship Elisabeth. Christian was naturalized on 1 September 1857 in St. Clair County, Illinois. Following the death of his father in 1858, the family lived near the town square of Belleville, Illinois, where his mother was listed in the 1860 census as proprietor of a nearby tavern.

The 1870 census listed Christian as Henry “Losen” living in a boarding house on Carondolet Avenue working for the shoemaker J. Denz. On 14 January 1872, Christian married Louisa Caroline Becker at St. Paul’s Church in St. Louis. Louisa, born on 25 April 1851 in Germany, was the daughter of Jacob Becker. Nothing more is known of her family history. She died on 29 September 1911 at home at 2007 California Street, St. Louis.

The family name was spelled both “Lowser” and “Loorer” in the 1880 census. (Note: Because of disputed results, there were two census enumerations in St. Louis in 1880.) In 1900, the family census taker was their own son John. To Christian and Louisa were born six children:

    • Christian Looser, born 10 October 1872, died on 25 March 1875
    • Sophia (William Jerome Gutweiler), born on 17 September 1874, died on 10 October 1961
    • John Christian Looser, born on 5 March 1877, died on 6 March 1948
    • William Henry Looser, born on 20 February 1879, died on 8 November 1914
    • Laura M. (Charles Anton Wamhoff), born on 9 July 1883, died on 15 November 1973
    • Mary Anna “Mamie” (James E. Orr), born on 27 November 1886, died on 12 June 1965

Over the years, the family lived at 2673 N. 13th Street (1880), 1355 Leffingwell Avenue (1900), 2847 N. Grand Avenue (1910), and 6453 Bradley Avenue (1920). Following the death of his wife, Louisa, in 1911, Christian lived with his married daughter, Sophia Gutweiler, and owned his own shoe shop. He died in City Hospital on 16 August 1920 from “myocarditis with gangrene of the leg” according to the death certificate. Burial occurred at St. Peter’s United Church of Christ Cemetery, Section 24A, grave 670.

Christian was the first of the 1857 immigrant German Looser family to reside in St. Louis, and his son William Henry was the progenitor of this branch of the family, which continues the family name to this day in the United States. German descendants of the family still live in the Berghuelen, Germany, area.

Written by Don Looser
October 2017

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Last Modified: 25-Oct-2018 21:30