Bruce Ritter

Bruce Ritter[1]

Male 1848 - 1919  (71 years)

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  • Name Bruce Ritter 
    Born 9 Jan 1848 
    Gender Male 
    Died 24 Feb 1919 
    Buried Moore County, NC at Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • 1900 -- Census, Moore County, NC Page 82-B
    Person ID I07251  Moore County Wallaces
    Last Modified 30 Jun 2011 

    Father Wright Cotton 
    Mother Elizabeth Ritter,   b. 15 Apr 1822,   d. 10 Feb 1904  (Age 81 years) 
    Notes 
    • Per Bruce Ritter's Death Certificate his father was Wright Cotton.
    Family ID F2786  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Catherine Ida Dean,   b. 1850  [2
    Married 30 Jun 1872  Carthage, Panola County, TX Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. Mary Lee Ritter,   b. 1874
     2. Claude Augustus "Gus" Ritter,   b. 1880
     3. David Henry Ritter,   b. 1882
    Last Modified 30 Jun 2011 
    Family ID F11065  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Anna C. Williams,   b. 4 Jan 1852,   bur. Moore County, NC at Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married 11 May 1902  Moore County, NC Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Last Modified 8 Jul 2014 
    Family ID F4706  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 30 Jun 1872 - Carthage, Panola County, TX Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 11 May 1902 - Moore County, NC Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Moore County, NC at Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Headstones
    Bruce Ritter and Annie Williams
    Bruce Ritter and Annie Williams
    Bruce was the son of Elizabeth Ritter

  • Sources 
    1. [S1174] Patty Pickle [picklep@aol.com], 29 Jun 2011.
      Bruce Ritter was my great grandfather, my mother's father's father. He has been the source of much mystery and speculation in our branch of the Ritter family for more than a century. In this current age of internet research, some of the mystery has finally been resolved.

      However, some of the intrigue has only been heightened by the new information I have learned. I am writing this story to help other family members in their genealogical search and in the hopes that other distant family members will read this and help me know more.

      Bruce Ritter was born in Moore County, Ritters Township, North Carolina on January 9, 1849 to Margaret Elizabeth Ritter. Elizabeth (b.1822) was the second daughter of William D. and Catherine Melton Ritter. She resided with her parents, younger siblings, and her older son, Joseph Wright Ritter, at the time of Bruce's birth. In time, two other children were born to her, Alexander L. Ritter and Margaret Corinna Ritter.

      Who was Bruce's father? His death certificate says Write (Wright) Cotten. I have been told that Stephen Wright Cotten (b. about 1792-1877) is believed to be his father. I speculate that Cotten was also the father of Wright Ritter given the naming. I believe many family members think that he was also the father of Alexander L. and Margaret Corinna. More research on S. W. Cotton is necessary for me to speculate further.

      Bruce Ritter married Catherine Ida Dean in Carthage, Panola County, Texas on June 30, 1872. Ritter oral history says that a number of North Carolina Ritter family members came to Texas in the aftermath of the Civil War. Why did they choose Panola County, and what members of the family joined the GTT movement? Did Bruce know Ida from North Carolina or did they meet in Texas?

      Catherine Ida Dean (b.1850) was born in Alabama to David D. and Mary Dean. However, her youngest sibling was born in North Carolina in close proximity to Moore County. It is very possible that Bruce and Ida met there before coming to Texas. Sometime after their marriage, they moved to Canton, Van Zandt County, Texas. Their first child, Mary Lee Ritter, was born in1874. Lee was actually the survivor of a set of twins. A son, Claude Augustus Ritter (called Gus) was born in 1880. The census record indicates that Bruce was a farmer. I also know that Ida's parents and some siblings lived in Van Zandt County at this time. Ida was pregnant with their third child, my grandfather. Sometime before David Henry Ritter's birth on 1882, Bruce Ritter disappeared. The story told to his children was that he went to town to conduct some business and just never returned home.

      Did Bruce Ritter die, was he murdered? If not, where did he go? What on earth could have happened that he would leave his wife and young children, one that was yet to be born? These were some of the mysteries we pondered over for literally decades. We now know that Bruce returned to Moore County, North Carolina. How soon he got there after leaving Texas I do not know. He married Annie Williams Ritter in 1902 after his brother Alexander Ritter died. He died in Moore County, NC in 1919.
      Ida Dean Ritter remarried William Walters and had several more children. She and her three Ritter children lived the rest of their lives not knowing what happened to Bruce Ritter. Bruce and Ida had six grandchildren from their union.

      Dear Readers, if you have additional information on Bruce Ritter I would ask you to please contact me. I most especially would like to see pictures of Bruce or any of the immediate family. This is a sad story. It was sad for Bruce and his children. Bruce's tombstone says "Father". It is sad that we all missed knowing our extended Ritter kin.

      Sincerely, Patricia Slack Pickle

    2. [S1174] Patty Pickle [picklep@aol.com].