In today's world, Joe and Henrietta Haitz would have been the stars of a reality show on cable television. In their day, they were not stars. They were the very busy parents of sixteen, facing the ups and downs of farm life and managing to do so without all of our modern conveniences, in ways that few of us today can even imagine.
Joseph Haitz and Henrietta Koewler were married on October 27, 1902 in Ripley, Ohio where they had both been born and raised. The wedding took place at St. Michael's Catholic Church which stood, and still stands, on the corner of Fourth and Market Streets.
About eight months later, Henrietta and Joe were expecting their first child. Margaret J. made her appearance on February 18, 1904. Her siblings would follow in rapid succession. They were as follows : Robert (1905), Mary Louise (1906), Elizabeth H. (1907), Joseph William (1909), Henrietta (1910), Frank A. (1911), Emma J. (1912), George Henry (1914), Jack Irenas (1915), James Rudolph (1916), Albert Louis (1918), Catherine (1920), Rita (1921), Virginia Ann (1923), and Ruth (1924).
The family was believed to be the largest family in Brown County and their photograph was published several times in the local newspaper, The Ripley Bee. At the time of Joe's death in 1960, he and Henrietta had been married for 57 years. They had 43 grandchildren and many great-grandchildren.