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Posts Tagged ‘Klein’

A version of this post was published 14 February 2018 under the title “Assumptions that Don’t Hold Up,” but in light of some new information I am copying the original and greatly revising it and adding new information. I will make private the original so that there is no confusion. I worry about adding layers of information and replicating possibly faulty information.

Funny that the old title has become ironic.

At the time that I first posted, I’d never seen this photo until about two years before when I received it from my uncle. This is my paternal grandmother and her siblings (all except for Helen–I thought at the time–who was not yet born).

The four children are:

Elisabetha Anna Maria Klein, born 1891 in Budesheim, Germany, raised in Elmhurst, Illinois

Maria Anna Elisabetha Klein, born 1892 (often documented as 93) in Budesheim, Germany, raised in Elmhurst, Illinois

Anna Elisabetha Maria Klein, born 1893 in Budesheim, Germany, raised in Elmhurst, Illinois

Frank Anthony Klein, born 1896 in Chicago, Illnois, raised in Elmhurst, Illinois

I know that Elizabeth is the girl standing in back, the oldest and tallest. I know that Frank is in front. Anna is on our left (their right) and Maria (Grandma Marie) is on our right (their left). At the time of first posting, I wasn’t absolutely sure who was Anna and who was Marie, but I now feel confident with this identification.

My grandmother and her siblings had another sister who came along in 1910, and that was Helen. Her unlikely name was Helen Nevada Klein. I would love to figure out where that middle name came from.

I have many photos of Grandma, Anna, and Helen who were the three siblings who lived into older age. I also believe I have a photo of Frank as an adult and possibly of Elizabeth. A second cousin shared Elizabeth’s confirmation photo with me.

Now he has shared another photo, taken in 1918 in Chicago, of Elizabeth with his own mother Grace (the baby) and Aunt Anna. To give you an idea of how difficult it can be to determine ages from old photos, Elizabeth is holding the baby and is two years older than Anna in the darker outfit.

 

This is the first photo I’ve seen of Elizabeth around this age; she was 26. What a pretty young woman, especially animated in a big smile.

OK, above I said that I thought the top photo had all the siblings except Helen. But the other night I was goofing around on my iPad and saw a hint on my great-grandmother Margarethe Klein’s Ancestry page. The hint directed me to the index of the birth of a little boy in 1906, ten years after the birth of Frank, Jr. George Joseph Klein was born 21 August 1906 in Chicago. I quickly did a search for a death record. Sure enough, he passed away 24 March 1909, not even 3 years old yet. I know that my father never knew of George’s short, tragic life.

I feel frustrated because I wanted to order the records from Cook County, but because of the pandemic the office is closed down. I will have to wait to read the cause of death.

Now back to the top photo again. The birthdates of the kids are 1891, 1892, 1893, and 1896. I guess the photo was taken before George was born in 1906, so do you think that narrows the photo to 1902-1906? Yes? No?

Clearly, the family was still living in Chicago and had not yet moved to Elmhurst and bought the farmhouse. This is important because I have not been able to find a 1900 census report on the family. Do you think the records on George would divulge an address for the family or not?

The name George is also mystifying to me because the way the family named the oldest girls and Frank, it was family name, family name, family name. George’s middle name of Joseph is for Margarethe’s father Josephus Wendel. But I don’t see a George in the family. Maybe that was paving the way for Helen’s middle name Nevada?!

RIP George Joseph Klein. You are finally remembered again.

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I keep waiting for that day where I can get caught up on my genealogy research for a month straight. First I need to organize what I have. I pulled out the pedigree report book I had prepared almost five years ago by Uwe Porten, a German genealogist, of my grandmother’s Klein family that immigrated to the United States from Budesheim.

Today I find this an old-fashioned way of handling genealogy research, but it’s certainly beautiful and lends more “gravity” to the project.

You can see that this is called the Klein Family Research Project because Grandma’s maiden name was Klein. Her mother was Margarethe. Last week I shared her photo that Val repaired and colorized.

Margarethe Wendel Klein

The next photo gives you an idea of what the book contains.

and this:

Notice the records that the book contains. I also have these on CD. I think it’s amusing that two of the family surnames are Link and Wink. Because they rhyme!

All these Catholic records had to be obtained in person. That is why I had to hire Uwe to do this work. Unlike the Dutch records which are readily available online, the German records are much more difficult to locate.

The above page begins a summary of Uwe’s findings. Notice that he says he was first able to prove that Margarethe’s husband Frank came from Budesheim. He traced the Klein family “as well as several of the related ancestral families.” Margarethe’s grandfather Friedrich Wendel was located.

Frank Klein’s father actually came from Hergenfeld, which was about 10 miles west of Budesheim. Then he made his way to Budesheim. Notice it says that Hergenfeld was considered “abroad” because at that time, “Budesheim was part of the Grand-Duchy of Hesse-Darnstadt, and Hergenfeld was part of the Kingdom of Prussia. Does that make Frank’s father Johann Peter a Prussian? Grandma used to tell me a story about how she remembered her family saying “the Prussians are coming,” as though that was something bad. I find the whole Prussian thing VERY CONFUSING. And the more it is explained to me, the more confused I get. I don’t think it’s stupidity on my part. I think that I would need a PhD in Prussian studies to truly “get it.”

Share Your Research–Or Not?

Presenting some of the opening pages of the book here makes me think of a subject I’ve been pondering lately. On some of the Facebook genealogy groups people sometimes discuss how some family history researchers don’t want to share their work with others. And others do want to share. Nobody asked me, but I’ll give you my two cents on the matter.

I paid a small fortune for this research report from Uwe. In general, I’ve spent more money than I should on genealogy. And much much more time.

Do you think I am leading up to why would I share it then?

Why WOULDN’T I share it? Does sharing it make it cost me less in time or money? Does sharing it take away from my findings? It’s not like I’ve written the Great American novel and letting other people sign it.

The more information we share, the more information we reclaim. I like the notion of thousands of trees that all interconnect and our remembering of history grows in value.

Even more importantly, why wouldn’t I want to share CORRECT INFORMATION? All that shoddy info going around on Ancestry and other places is because of people who are too lazy or cheap/poor to do the work themselves. So why wouldn’t I want to help clean up the information by providing what is correct (or as correct as can be at this point)?

Bottom line: SHARE, SHARE, SHARE.

Now my photos are another story. Please do NOT share my photos without giving credit to me or my blog. Those are family heirlooms. UPDATE: I am adding this so there can be so mistaking my point about the photos. I have family photos because lots of family members have shared them with me. They belong to my family. Since starting this blog, in addition to all the amazing information I’ve gleaned and connections I’ve made, there have been some people who have:

  • Shared my photos online, such as in Facebook groups, without giving me or my family credit and severing the connection between photo and information behind it.
  • Shared my photos in Ancestry, posting them with the wrong identities!
  • Taken my photos and used them for their own commercial purposes, such as for their own books.

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