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John & Annie Lauffer, Orphan Train Riders

Annie and John Lauffer were lucky enough to live very close to one another for many years.

John Lauffer (1886 - 1961) came West around 1896 and lived with Erastus Bates of Lincoln, IL. He lived with the Bates at least until he was 24 years old in 1910. He married in 1920 to Clara Whitson. They had one daughter, Jane. John had his own business as an electrical contractor in the 1940s after working for years as an electrician. When Mrs. Bates died in 1925 John was remembered in her will. John was a veteran of the Great War and was buried at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield after his death in Florida.

John's sister Annie (b. 1890) was living just two miles away, also near Lincoln, but only a hint of her life there remains. One hint to her location appears in the 1910 census, when the John White family in Lincoln included an adopted daughter named Fanny who was 20 years old and was from New York. The Whites already had a daughter named Anna, and the family may have changed Annie's name to avoid confusion. However, no other record of her under the name Lauffer or White could be found. Anna White, her adoptive sister, lived until 1932, running the White Boarding House. No mention was made of a sister in her obituary.

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