Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

The gavel my great-grandfather William Herbert Whitehead used at the American Legion. In the possession of my Aunt Barbara and Uncle Bud.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Genealogy Happy Dance - Marcantonio Casillo

I had the best night ever at the FamilyHistory Center today. I walked in, grabbed my microfilms and the woman working asked what I was looking at today. I said Canadian land records and Italian birth records, but I wasn't so sure on the Italian. She said that Italian records were her favorite and offered to help!

Apparently, back in the day, someone helped her at a FHC with the Italian records and now she was going to help me. She asked about my family and my interest in genealogy. I told her I was looking for my great-great grandfather Marcantonio Casillo's birth record. According to his daughter who told her nephew (my grandfather) Marco was born 11 January 1868 in RocRoma, Caserta, Italy. Try as I may, I never have been able to find a RocRoma, but in checking, I saw many Casillos listed in Roccaromana, Caserta and thought that was close enough and ordered the microfilm. According to my grandfathers family tree Marco's father was Peter, mother Unknown. According to Marco's death certificate his parents were John and Angeline.

The woman who helped me said it was the worst microfilm she ever saw. Very tiny, bad writing and very fuzzy. It took quite a while, but then we FOUND IT!!!

Registered on the 15 January 1868. Father Pietro Casillo, son of the dead Guiseppe, age 33, profession Guardilegata(?any ideas anyone? hard to read), living in Roccaromana. Baby, masculine, born 11 January 1868, at 4 o'clock. Mother Angela Rosa Palmiero, daughter of the alive Rafeal and Maria Guiseppa Agua/Agia/Igia/Izio, age 23. Baby named Marcantonio Maria.

And I got luckier still, on the side of the page was a notation that Marcantonio married Carolina Izio 5 December 1901 (I had September from my grandfathers information. This explains why I couldn't find a certificate in Buffalo, they married in Italy. I also had Carolina Izzo)

Now I need to try and find some relatives on the film... Even if I can't though, I found him! I have a town! And parents! And grandparents! And proof of a marriage! Woo-hoo!!!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

SNGF - My 16 great-great-grandparents

From Randy over at Genea-Musings: Here is your SNGF assignment for the evening (if you choose to accept it - this is not stump the genealogist or even Mission Impossible):

1) List your 16 great-grandparents in pedigree chart order. List their birth and death years and places.

2) Figure out the dominant ethnicity or nationality of each of them.

3) Calculate your ancestral ethnicity or nationality by adding them up for the 16 - 6.25% for each (obviously, this is approximate).

4) If you don't know all 16 of your great-grandparents, then do it for the last full generation you have.

5) Write your own blog post, or make a comment on Facebook or in this post.

  1. Joseph Francis Eugene Acquard, Jr.: born 17 Jan 1855 in Cheektowaga, Erie, NY; married 15 Oct 1878 in Bennington Ctr., Wyoming, NY; died 10 Sept 1943 in Bennington Ctr., Wyoming, NY. FRENCH
  2. Mary Ann Kollin: born 15 Oct 1878 in Bennington Ctr., Wyoming, NY; died 5 Feb 1938 in Bennington Ctr., Wyoming, NY. 1/2 GERMAN and 1/2 BELGIAN
  3. Franciszek Karpinski: born 16 Sep 1880 in Poland; died 22 May 1943 in Erie or Wyoming, NY. POLISH
  4. Jozefa Szydlik: born 26 Sep 1886 in Poland; died 4 Apr 1973 in Warsaw, Wyoming, NY. POLISH
  5. John George Nuwer: born 21 Mar 1869 in Lancaster, Erie, NY; married 19 Apr 1893 in Lancaster, Erie, NY; died 1 Feb 1948 in Alden, Erie, NY. FRENCH
  6. Anna M. Zaepfel: born 28 Sep 1874 in Elma, Erie, NY; died 7 Aug 1943 in Alden, Erie, NY. 1/2 GERMAN & 1/2 FRENCH
  7. Edward Roll: born about 1888 in Alden, Erie, NY; married 22 Jun 1910 in Alden, Erie, NY; died 12 May 1941 in Alden, Erie, NY. FRENCH
  8. Lidwina Agnes Pautler: born 16 Jan 1888 in Alden, Erie, NY; died 11 Oct 1975 in Batavia, Genesee, NY. FRENCH
  9. Marcantonio Casillo: born 11 Jan 1868 in Italy; married 5 Sept 1901 in Buffalo, Erie, NY; died 26 Nov 1937 in Colden, Erie, NY. ITALIAN
  10. Carolina Izzo: born 3 May 1876 in Italy; died 2 Oct 1934 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. ITALIAN
  11. William Fred Eichhorn: born 22 Jun 1874 in Chippewa, Ontario, Canada; married 14 Jun 1899 in Buffalo, Erie, NY; died 9 Mar 1931 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. GERMAN
  12. Augusta M. Tross: born 6 Sept 1877 in Germany; died 1 Jan 1939 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. GERMAN
  13. Charles William Whitehead: born 12 Jun 1872 in Burlington, Ontario, Canada; married prior to 1896; died 27 Dec 1927 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. ENGLISH
  14. Anna May Sanderson: born 17 Jun 1871 in Burlington, Ontario, Canada; died 29 Apr 1928 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. ENGLISH
  15. Jacob J. Gress: born 26 Jan 1869 in Buffalo, Erie, NY; married prior to 1888; died 11 Aug 1932 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. GERMAN
  16. Elizabeth Fink: born 6 Jul 1867 in Buffalo, Erie, NY; died 24 Apr 1957 in Buffalo, Erie, NY. GERMAN
That gives me 31.25% German; 28.125% French; 12.5% Polish; 12.5% Italian; 12.5% English ; and 3.125% Belgian. The French and German parts are hard to tell as most of my fathers family came from the Alsace-Lorraine region which kept changing hands. The fact that my 3rd great-grandmother was born in Belgium (like the waffle) has always been cool to me. Oddly, I most identify with the Italian part of my heritage, even though it is way down on the list.

Fleeman Obituaries

I found the following obituaries today on Old Fulton NY Postcards. The most interesting to me is finding out that my gggg grandfather, Adam Fleeman, remarried after his wife Barbara died. You have to feel bad that his second wife died 4 years after his first and then his son died a few months later. The last obituary is this Adam's grandson.

Buffalo Daily Courier, 2 Oct 1870
At North Buffalo, Mrs. BARBARA FLEEMAN, wife of Adam Fleeman, at 9 o'clock, Oct 1st, aged 46 years, 8 months and 8 days.

Funeral to be held Monday Oct 3., at 2 o'clock P.M., at St Johns Church, on Amherst street, North Buffalo. Friends and acquaintances are invited to attend.

Courier & Republic, Buffalo, NY, 18 May 1874
In this city, MAGDALENA FLEEMAN, wife of Adam Fleeman, aged 48 years and 10 days respectively.

Funeral on Tuesday, at 2 o'clock P. M., at residence No. 59 Tonawanda street. Friends and acquaintances are respectfully invited to attend.

Fremont, Ohio, papers please copy.

Courier & Republic, Buffalo, NY, 5 Aug 1874
In this city, Aug. 5, LOUIS C. FLEEMAN, son of Adam and Barbara Fleeman, aged 19 years, 2 months and 27 days.

Funeral to take place Friday, August 7th, at 2 1/2 o'clock P.M. Friends and acquaintances are most respectfully invited to attend.

Rochester, N. Y. and Fremont, Ohio, papers please copy.

Evening Republic, Buffalo, NY, 28 Jul 1884
FLEEMAN-In this city, on the 27th inst., ADAM LOUIS FLEEMAN, son of Adam and Henrietta S. Fleeman, aged 3 months and 24 days.

The funeral will take place from the family residence, 214 Dearborn street, this Monday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock.

Friends and acquaintances are respectfully invited to attend.

Erie, Pa., and Cairo, Ill., papers, please copy.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

When I feel most like a genealogist

Over at Olive Tree Genealogy is a well-deserved rant about genealogists who only will look for records in the comfort of their own home on the Internet. Some of these people have been looking for years, nearly a decade even, without ever stepping out into the world to search other records.

In my own research, I have to say I feel most like a genealogist when I am sifting through papers at the library, searching through huge index books at the court house and flipping through microfilm at the FamilyHistory Center. Finding information online through a search tool is always a nice addition to my work, but to feel truly accomplished I need to do more than type in a name, some dates and a location and hit "search."

If you are new (or not so new) to genealogy, remember that your family history is not online, ready for you print out back to Adam and Eve. If it were, this would not be a fun hobby, or even any hobby at all, since you wouldn't have to do any work. Go out into the world, head to those libraries, courthouses, churches and search. Drive around your ancestors hometown if you can, take pictures of their houses and their tombstones. I guarantee it will give you a much greater sense of satisfaction and accomplishment than anything you have found online.

Monday, August 3, 2009

My Maria (Strassheim Tross)

My great-great-great grandmother Maria Tross's death certificate arrived earlier this week, as I discuss here, with a birth date of 18 May 1841 in Germany and her father's name as John Strassheim. The source of information was Adoph Wetzlelen, her son-in-law. The passenger list she is listed to America on with her 6 children has her as being from Hessen, Germany.

I decided to check for the off-chance she was listed here and she was (I think)!

Maria Elisa Strassheim, b. 18 May 1841, Eberstadt, Giessen, Oberhessen, Hessen to Jacob Strassheim and Catharina Argin.

As two of her daughters are Elise and Katharine, this would definitely add evidence to it fitting. Then, I looked further down the list and found:

Maria Elisa Strassheim married to Wenzel Trost, 18 Nov 1866 at Eberstadt, Giessen, Oberhessen, Hessen.

My Maria was married to a Wenzel (also seen as Wesley) and their first child that I know about was born approximately 1869, which would also fit with the date.

Looks like a good fit so far. I need to find Maria's death notice/obit in the near future to hopefully confirm some of this. I also need to read the packets on searching in Germany I found on

Back to Basic: July

July went quick! GRIP  went virtual! I attended (most) of the sessions in Documentation and then continued my citation work with my ProGen a...