Monday, September 5, 2016

Making Connections through Online Trees

On August 25, a private message popped up in my facebook feed and it was dated 12/09/2014! Where was it before and what triggered its appearance? The message was essentially that the author believed he was related my husband through the Heinrich Wilhelm Timke b 1777. After not finding the surname Timke in my husband's tree we even speculated that it could be a Swedish connection. Comparing our online trees, we were able to confirm that they were 6th cousins once removed with the connection being Tobias Detrich Sempsrott in Asendorf, Germany. Since we have both done DNA testing, Now we can find the rest of the story. Unfortunately I am doing the "Do Over" and need to enter 6 generations of a large German family before I can begin playing with this new information!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Maternal Ancestors

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) Review your Pedigree Chart (either on paper or in your genealogy management software program) and determine the age at death of your female ancestors back at least five generations (and more if you want to).

2)  Tell us the lifespan years for each of these ancestors.  Which of your female ancestors in this group lived the longest?  Which lived the shortest?  

3)  Share your results in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or on Facebook or Google+.

Here are my results of this challenge:  
Elizabeth Mary Connery         1917 – 1977  60

Alice Fleming Connery           1872 – 1962   90
Henrietta Burbach Hansen    1888 – 1960   72

Mary Leahy Connery              1827  - 1896    69
Mary Hennessy Fleming       
Eva Schmitz Burbach              1859 – 1932    93
Dorette Cristensen Hansen   1857 – 1887    30

2nd Great-Grandmothers
Elisabeth Kronenberger       1832  1872         40
Catharina Caspari                  1825 – 1913      88
Karen Dorthea Chrisensen   1833
Anna Toth Caspari
Ellen Mc Carthy Leahy           1807
Catherina Schaf  Burbach      1798 – 1834     36
Johanne Sophie Johanesdatter   1829 – after 1901   72+
Mary O’Donnell  Hennessy     1790  - abt 1833

3rd Great grandmothers
Anne Margarete Olsdatter     1808 - ?
Mari Pedersdatter
Catherine Gros Burbach     1763 – 1800      37

Anna Catherine Braun Schaf

Based on the current lack of death dates I cannot give the average life spans for each generation, but based on the current information in my file my great-grandmother Dorette Cristensdatter Hansen had the shortest live span, dying at the age of 30, having given birth to 7 chldren over a 10 year period.  

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun! Meet my 2nd Great-grandparents

our mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:

1)  We each have 16 great-great grandparents.  How did their birth and death years vary?  How long were their lifespans?  

2)  For this week, please list your 16 great-great grandparents, their birth year, their death year, and their lifespan in years.  You can do it in plain text, in a table or spreadsheet, or in a graph of some sort.

3)  Share your information about your 16 great-great grandparents with us in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, or on Facebook or Google+.  If you write your own blog post, please leave a link as a comment to this post.

I only know 14 of my 16 second great-grandparents and I don’t have all of their vital dates.  All of mine are from Germany, Ireland, and Norway.  I will say that the church records from both Germany and Norway are excellent.  Unfortunately the Irish records are both sporadic and illegible.  Here is what I do have on my second great-grandparents. I have sorted them by country.
Patrick Leahy born about 1805
Ellen Mc Carthy born about 1807
Patrick Connery born about 1794
Ellen Drake born about 1800
John Hennessy born about 1784 – died 10 Oct 1833
Mary O’Donnell born about 1790 – died about 1833
Daniel Kristensen born 1817 – died after 1865*
Karen Dorthea Christiansen born 1833 – died 1928?
Martin Hansen born 1829 – died after 1865*
Johanne Sofie Johannesdatter born Oct 1829 – died 1901
Georg Burbach born 1825 – died 1897
Catherina Caspari born 1825 – died 1913
Phillip Schmitz born 1834 – died 1906
Elisabeth Kronenberger born 1832 – died 1876
*After 1865 because they are noted in the 1865 Norway census

This exercise has shown me where I need to do more research for the missing death information.  It is also interesting to note that my Granddaughter (born 1999) was born in the same town in Germany as her 4th great-grandmother Elizabeth Kronenberger.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun! Family Tree Statistics

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) My friend and colleague Linda Stufflebean posted J
UST FOR FUN – 4 X 6 = 24 FAMILY TREE QUESTIONS on her blog this week, and I thought we could answer half of the questions this week and half next week.

2)  Here are the first three questions:

*  What four places did my ancestors live that are geographically the farthest from where I live today?
*  What are the four most unusual given names in my family tree?

*  What are the four most common given names in my family tree?

3)  Answer each of the questions based on your own ancestors, not the collateral lines.

4)  Share your answers with us in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this post, in a Facebook post or a Google+ post.  Please provide a link to your response if you can.

The four places that my ancestors lived that are geographically the farthest from where I live today are:
Oberselters, Hessen-Nassau, Prussia - My Burbachs who immigrated in 1856.
Oslo, Akershus, Norway - My Hansens who immigrated in 1894

Ballylanders and Kilfinane, County Limerick, Ireland - my Flemings and Connerys who immigrated in the 1880s and 1890s.

Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin where my Schmidts were established in the 1840s.

The four most unusual given names in my family tree are:
Dafin Hansen(b 1801) married Mari Olsdatter in Nittedal, Akershus, Norway.
Hubertus Burbach (b 1798) married Catherine Schaaf in Oberselters, Hessen-Nassau,Prussia.
Dorette Christensdatter (b 1857) married Johannes Adolf Waldemar Hansen in Oslo, Akershus, Norway
Adolph Halfdan Hansen (b 1880) married Henrietta Burbach in Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The four most common given names in my family tree are:  
Mary (3), Patrick (3), Adam (2) and Anna (2)

For this project I created a gedcom file of only my direct line ancestors in Family Tree Maker and imported it into Legacy Family Tree and used the Statietics Report.  Had I used my full file including the collateral lines and all siblings the results would have been much different.

Monday, February 22, 2016

World Thinking Day and My Scouting Life

You can sell a lot of cookies to hungry high schoolers!
Today February 22, 2016 is World Thinking Day celebrated by Scouts and Scouters around the world to commorate the joint birthday of Lord and Lady Baden Powell the founders of the Scouting movement.
My scouting life began with Brownies in second grade.  The meetings were held after school and I think in a school cafeteria.  In 4th grade I became a regular Girl Scout and wore the green dress with long sleeves.  If I remember correctly, badges earned were worn on the sleeve. In 7th grade I graduated to the Junior Scout level and the uniform changed to a green gaberdeen skirt and white blouse.  A badge sash, worn diagonally, displayed our badges and by then we had quite a collection.

I went to camp several summers and learned to cook over a camp fire, made a buddy burner using a tuna can, strip of corrugated cardboard coiled inside the can and coated in melted parafin.  A large can similar to a large juice or coffee can was placed over the tuna can as a cook top.  We learned to cook food in foil packets.  Digging a latrine was an adventure but most of us preferred to avoid using it.

Fast forward about 18 years and our son wanted to join Cub Scouts.  At the meeting the Cub Master said they really needed an assistant in order to admit new scouts.  So my husband volunteered as an assistant and I took on a den (group of 1st year Cubs).  The den meetings were held at our house and all of the boys could walk to and from the meetings.

At that time Girl Scouting was not available where we lived so some friends and I helped it get started.  After we were chartered, I took on a Brownie troop as well as theCub Den. My daughter wasn't really old enough to be official but she was a Brownie from kindergarden until 3rd grade. (maybe she was the first ever Daisy) My brownies did a lot of Cub Scout things since I felt the support and training was lots better at the Cub Scout side of the equation.  Pack-O-Fun anyone?

My kids stayed in Scouts for a long time.  My son became an Eagle Scout and my daughter styed in Girl Scouts into High School.  They went to day camps and resident camps, marched in paradesand sold Calendars, Cookies, and Popcorn. They learned to cook and sew and most of all we watched them become confident young adults.

Fast forward to 2005 when I began living with my daughter and her family at Fort Knox, Ky.  My daughter was a co-leader for her older daughter's Brownie troop.  She was also a helper for her son's Cub Scout den. I was quickly added as a helper and helped plan crafts and meetings.  There was a very strong Scouting community on the base and the Scouting Community even had a building to call their own for all the meetings.  There were even lockers to store supplies so that they didn't have to be taken back and forth all the time.

In 2008 our move to Texas involved, once again, finding a troop for one Boy Scout, one Brownie Girl Scout, and one Daisy Girl Scout.  As always there were never enough leaders so I went to the Daisy meetings, my daughter went to the Brownie meetings and also to the Boy Scout meetings.  Later the Girl Scout/Brownie meetings merged since there were several families with sisters at different levels and it was easier to have one meeting.  We continued to do all the traditional Scout stuff and there were program changes over the years but Scouting is still the same leader molder. My last camp out was in 2012 when we slept on the floor in a 1940s building  and the temp was 19 deg.  We kept the fire going all night long.

My grandson is an Eagle Scout and both of my granddaughters are working on their Gold Awards.

One of my brothers received his Eagle Scout Rank and his daughter is currently Scout Master for her 3 sons.

It is interesting that those of us who were Scouts and 2nd and 3rd generation Scouts.  As a former Scout leader, I understand why it is associated with National Margarita Day

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Cousin Bait Wins Again!

I have been working on re-doing my family tree as part of the 2016 Genealogy Do-Over and in the past week I entered the Baptism records of 29 children that were born between 1820 and 1834 in the tiny village of Oberselters, Hessen-Nassau, Germany.  The six families involved were Burbach (3 brothers) Muller ( I don't know yet if the Mullers were related) and  Pabst families.

Susanna Burbach had moved to Wurges after her marriage to Johann Georg Meurer and her children were Baptized in Wurges.  Susanna's daughter Anna Maria Meurer married Andreas Hassler and they remained in the area.

This week sent me an email that someone had posted a message on my account.  The message was from Patrik Hassler in Germany!  Patrik wrote that Susanna Burbach Meurer was his 3rd Great-grandmother and he still lived in the area.  He found my tree on and was looking for family in the United States.  My 2nd Great-grandfather Hubert was a brother of Susanna Burbach!! Another cousin found. Whoot!!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Serendipity Times Two - Unexpected Finds!

Things you find on the way to somewhere else!  I am taking the "Family History Writing Challenge" from Lynn Palermo and decided to write the story of my Great-Great-Grandmother Catherine Caspary and her decision to immigrate to the United States in 1856.

Catherine's story begins in 1851 in Villmar, Hessen-Nassau, Germany.  She is married to Georg Burbach and has a young son Adam.  How and why did this young couple decide to leave Germany and go to America and why Milwaukee, Wisconsin?  This is the basis of the story I am writing.

While researching their method of travel to America, I realized that I didn't know their port of departure.  What did I know?  I knew from Georg's naturalization papers that they arrived in New York in July of 1856 and Georg was born in 1824.  So I went to and selected the New York Passenger lists.  I entered the following criteria:  Name Georg; birth year 1824 +- 2yrs; place of birth Germany; arrival 1856.  I got only 26 returns!

There they were Georg and Catherine SUMBACH and their sons Hermann and Johann.  Traveling with them is Anna Caspari who is likely Catherine's sister and Anne Marie Becker.  They had sailed on the ship "Mary Ogden" from Le Havre, France.

Later I went to to see if there were any records for my Georg Burbach that would be of help with my story.  Imagine my surprise to see his name on a marriage record in New York state!  He is listed as the "father of the groom".  This is the record of the marriage of his second son John (Johann) to Steffonia Grumber in 1875 at Brooklyn, Kings, New York.  I knew about John and Stephanie's marriage since they and their children lived close to Georg and Catherine in Milwaukee.  I hadn't yet looked for their marriage other than the 1880, 1900, and 1910 census returns.  I am glad since I would have wasted a lot of time.   I had no reason to believe John had ever left Milwaukee after his arrival as a two year old in 1856.  The next mystrey to solve is why did he go to New York for a bride?
Job training, arranged marriage, they met in Milwaukee and her family moved to New York for work?  What do you think?