IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.
updated 06/04/2012

Anton and Franziska Moser
Family Album

Anton Moser, was born July 19, 1795, in Birndorf, Waldshut, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany to Johannes Vicentius Moser and his wife Nothburga Marder. Anton married Franziska Margreta Durst in Loerrach, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany. Franziska was the daughter of Johannes Durst and Theresia Wochner and had been born in 1802 in Ruhrberg, Loerrach, Baden, Germany.

Many children were born to Anton and Franziska while they lived in Germany and after they emigrated to Basel, Switzerland. In December, 1846, Anton and Franziska and their surviving seven children emigrated to the United States, arriving in New Orleans in Jan. 1847. The matriarch, Franziska and daughter Maria Rosalia are listed on a different page than the men. (Note: I have the actual passenger list pages for the family. Interested researchers should contact me if they want a scan of them)

List Of Passengers Arrived From Foreign Ports - In the Port of New Orleans - Aboard the Vessel Riga

Anton Moser, age 50
Tobias, age 18
Lucas, age 14
Anton, age 7
Johann, age 3
Joseph, age 1
Franziska, age 43
Marie, age 7

The family arrived in Guttenberg, Clayton County, Iowa in February, 1851, after living briefly in Madison, IL. Their son Joseph had apparently died prior to June 1850, as he is not included in that census record.

Anton was a successful farmer in Jefferson Township, judging by tax and federal agriculture schedules. All their children married offspring of other long-time families of Clayton County, except for John who died while serving in the Civil War. All their sons, Tobias, Lucas and Anthony, and son-in-law Karl Shrank were also farmers in Clayton County and elsewhere. Anton and Franziska were blessed with 38 grandchildren and well over 100 great-grandchildren.

Anton died 14 Nov 1875 and is buried in St. John’s Cemetery (aka Dittmer), Jefferson twp. Franziska died 7 Mar 1888. No gravesite has as yet been found for her.

Anton and Franziska’s son Lucas Moser married Matilda Risch, daughter of Anton Risch, a Clayton County mason, and Theresia Boss.


Lucas & Matilda (Risch) family
Lucas and Matilda (Risch) Moser family ca1895

Lucas Moser, b. 18 Oct. 1832 in Birndorf, Waldshut, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany, and his wife Matilda Risch, b. 14 March 1848 in Vaduz, Leichtenstein, are pictured (above) with their eight children, all born in Clayton co., Iowa. Lucas and Matilda Moser sit at the ends of the middle row with daughter Frances, b. 9 Nov. 1869, seated between them. Seated in the front row are John Anton, b. 31 March 1888; Louisa, b. 23 Apr. 1883; and Catherine, b. 19 March 1884. Standing in the back row are daughters Rosalia, b. 17 May 1872; Elizabeth, b. 9 Feb. 1876; Mary, b. 15 Aug. 1878; and Pauline, b. 5 Dec 1866.

The 1856 Iowa Census shows that Lucas (age 24), his parents Anton and Franziska Moser, and his siblings: Tobias (age 28), Anton / Anthony (age 22), Rosalia (age 17) and John / Johann (age 11), had resided in Jefferson Township, Clayton County for 5 years.

Matilda was the daughter of Anton Risch and Theresia Boss. She immigrated with her parents and older sister (also named Theresia) in 1849, while just an infant. Anton Risch and Theresia Boss were married on 5 Apr. 1842 in Vaduz, Leichtenstein. According to the 1850 U.S. Federal mortality schedule, which records data for the prior year, Theresia died in June, 1849 of cholera. In May 1850, Anton married Theresia's sister Anna Maria Boss.

Anton and Anna Maria possibly had another daughter because the 1852 census lists 4 females living with Anton. In Dec. 1853, a daughter was buried and in March 1854, Anton died after an illness or injury of a couple months duration, according to Dr. Ludwig's bill and the gravedigger's bill which were included in his probate file. Anna Maria continued to raise her nieces after her subsequent marriage to John Von Bruehl on 12 June 1854.

Lucas Moser
Lucas Moser
Lucas Moser and his brothers Anthony (Anton) and John (Johann) Moser served during the Civil War. Lucas and John enlisted in the Missouri 17th Infantry and Anthony enlisted in the Missouri 16th Infantry. On Jan. 11, 1863, John was killed at Arkansas Post, Arkansas. In Sept. 1863, Anthony was captured at Chickamauga, GA and imprisoned for over seven months. Anthony and Lucas were both honorably discharged and awarded pensions. Their Mother, Franziska, widow of Anton, applied for a Mother's pension, but died March 8, 1888, before it could be approved. Biography of John Moser.

According to his discharge papers, Lucas enrolled in the Missouri 17th Infantry Volunteers on Nov. 2 1861. Apparently, he lost his original discharge papers because his Soldier’s Certificate of Honorable Discharge is dated 1882 and indicates it is a replacement for same.

According to the US Army Register of Enlistments, Anthony Moser enlisted in Guttenberg on Aug. 25, 1862 in the 16th Infantry by Capt. Woodson. He was 26 years old with dark eyes, brown hair, a fair complexion and was 5’6” tall. His occupation is listed as cooper. He was discharged Aug 25, 1865. Also noted is that he “Experienced service at Lookout Mountain Tenn. A private.” (more about Anthony farther down this page)

Another Moser brother, Tobias (1828-1897), married Sophia (nee Klaehen) Morhman, widow of John H. Mohrman (d. 26 July 1878). They had no children together. Sophie's Mohrman sons lived in Guttenberg. Her daughter married August Brockman and lived in Millville. Tobias and Sophie are buried in St. John's (aka Dittmer) cemetery. Sophie's obituary

The 1870 census for Mallory Township, Clayton co., Iowa enumerates Lucas and Matilda with their two eldest daughters (Anna Maria Paulina, is listed as Anna M., but was always known as Paulina; and Maria Franziska, was listed as Maria, but was always called Frances).

According to Lucas' naturalization petition filed Nov. 15, 1907, he emigrated "to the U.S. from Havre de Grace, France on or about 30 day of Dec. 1846 and arrived at the port of New Orleans Louisiana, in the United States of America, on the vessel Riga. At the time of the filing he stated that he had resided in the US from 15 Jan 1847 and in Washington State since 12 Sept. 1899. However, the 1900 U.S. census shows Lucas, Matilda, and their three youngest children still living in Jefferson Township, Clayton co., Iowa. For more detailed census info. the researcher can download a Word document containing the census records for Anton, Lucas, Anthony, Tobias Moser & families, all in Clayton county, except the first census after the family's arrival in the U.S. which was in 1850 Madison, IL. Click here to download the document.

Lucas Moser's naturalization petition
Lucas Moser's naturalization petition
Transcription of the naturalization petition (opens in a new window)

A close-up of the section of the naturalization petition where Lucas lists his children, their birth places & dates.

On his naturalization petition, Lucas gave the wrong birth date (Apr. 19, 1886) for his daughter Catherine. The correct date is March 19, 1884. 'Grundberg' (Guttenberg) is shown as the birth place of John and Pauline; and 'Coldspring' as the birth place for the other children. Census records over the years indicated Clayton co. as the birthplace for all of the children, so presumably there was an area in/near Clayton co. known as Cold Spring. Given his advanced age, it is not surprising that Lucas' memory of places & dates may have been a little "iffy".

All of Lucas and Matilda's descendants, except their eldest daughter Pauline and her family, followed them to Washington State.

Pauline married Henry Schnieder and remained in Clayton County where they raised a large family. They, and 2 of their sons Edward J. & Henry Jr., are buried in St. Mary's Catholic cemetery, Guttenberg; and their son Alfred is buried in the Guttenberg City cemetery.
Henry & Pauline's gravestone. Pauline's obit. Henry Jr's obit & gravestone. Alfred's obit & gravestone. Edward's obit & gravestone.

Louisa and Catherine married brothers Henry and Gerhardt Leliefeld, respectively, in Guttenberg. They each had two children in Guttenberg before moving to WA State. Rosalia married another Guttenberg resident, Nick Franks, who had immigrated to the U.S. in 1889 (according to the 1900 census). She had 4 children while still living in Guttenberg. The 1910 census lists the three sisters and their families consecutively in Springdale, Stevens County, Washington.

Lucas & Mathilda Moser

Charles 'Carl/Karl' Schrank & Maria Rosalia Moser
Dyersville, Iowa; photographer Weigel

Maria was a sister of Lucas Moser. Carl & Maria are buried in St. Mary's Catholic cemetery, Guttenberg.
Carl's obituary & funeral card
Maria's obituary

Henry Leliefeld & Louisa Moser

Henry Leliefeld & Louisa Moser

John Moser as a child
John Anton Moser as a child
John Moser
John Anton Moser
Died 4 May 1972 in Spokane, WA. He is buried at Holy Cross cemetery in Spokane, WA
Five of Lucas Moser's daughters
Five of Lucas Moser's daughters
Rosalia (left), Louisa (back left), Elizabeth (center), Catherine (back right) and Frances (right)
Lucas & Anthony Moser with some of their children & grandchildren
Lucas & Anthony Moser with some of their children & grandchildren
Spokane, WA, ca 1917

Lucas Moser died 25 Jan 1923 in Springdale, Stevens co., Washington. Matilda Risch Moser died 10 Sep 1914, also in Springdale. They are buried in the Springdale cemetery. Obituary.

Gravestone of Lucas & Mathilda Moser in Springdale cemetery, Springdale, WA


Lucas Moser wasn’t the first of his family to move to Washington state. His nephew, Ambrose, son of his brother, Anton D. (aka Anthony and referred to as “Uncle Donny” by his grandnephew), is enumerated on the 1892 Washington Territory census living in Stevens co. Ambrose was born in Clayton co., May 1864. Ambrose was the first of his family to leave Iowa and move to Washington State.

Ambrose Moser
Ambrose Moser

Three of Ambrose’s siblings also moved to Washington State. His brothers Freeman and Joe are listed in census records as living in Spokane, Spokane County (which neighbors Stevens County), Washington. His sister Winnifred 'Winnie' married a Clayton co. man, Henry J. Lyons, and they moved to the Springdale area and are listed in the 1900 census.

In 1904, Henry and Winnifred Lyons sold their homestead in Washington state to Lucas’ daughter Elizabeth and they moved to Alberta, Canada (1911 Can. census) but by 1930 they had returned to Washington State. Henry had become a naturalized Canadian citizen and had to reapply to be a U.S. citizen after his return to Washington. Both Winnifred and Henry died in Deer Park, Stevens co. The homestead was located on a hill outside of Springdale, a hill ever since called “Lyons’ Hill." Elizabeth’s sister Louise Moser and her husband Henry Leliefeld also homesteaded on Lyon’s Hill.

Henry Lyon's naturalization petition
Winnifred Moser Lyon's naturalization petition

Anthony Moser, circa 1920-21

Anthony Moser, circa 1920-21 Buena Vista, Clayton County, with daughter Clara Eldora Moser Sullivan and two of her daughters on the left. The girl in the front right was identified as a neighbor, no name.

Anthony Moser's children, 1927

Anthony Moser's children, Winnie Moser Lyons (center) with her husband Henry Lyons, and her siblings Sarah Way, Eldora Sullivan and Joe Moser. The photo was taken between 1927 and 1951.

Anthony Moser wrote an autobiography that tells about the family's trip from Switzerland to Guttenberg and of his civil war experiences. It was included in his Civil War Pension Application File.
Anthony Moser's Autobiography
Anthony Moser's obituary
Elisabeth Moser's obituary (wife of Anthony)


Even though most of Lucas and Anthony Moser’s children and grandchildren moved away from Clayton County to Washington and other western states, the families remained close to their many relatives in Iowa, as is evidenced by copious amounts of family photos sent from Iowa and several letters which have survived for over a hundred years. The letters are all written in “old” German, a style used prior to the 1930s. There are also several photos that were taken in Washington State when relatives from Iowa and other states visited Spokane and Stevens counties. The loving hearts, kind and generous personalities and strong family ties so often mentioned in the obituaries seems to be a pervasive family trait that continues down through all the generations, as does the courage, dedication, strength and hard work evidenced by the original immigrants who braved the wild Atlantic to create a more prosperous life in a land of religious and personal freedom, carving farms and cities from the forests that greeted them upon their arrival in this great land we now are all so proud to call "home."


~source: photos are from the collection of the contributor; family information compiled by the contributor from various sources (researchers should contact the contributor for full source citations)

~contributed by Elizabeth Stack, g-granddaughter of Lucas Moser. Elizabeth's email address is in the surname registry for Moser.

~Note: Lucas and his parents/siblings are not related to another Moser family (Nicolas, Fred, etc.) who lived in Clayton co. The Mosers in this family album were from Basel, Switzerland; the others were from some other part of Switzerland.


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