Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Value of Google

In the past six months, I have found so much online with the assistance of Google. I am certainly no expert on Google so I have been trying to read as much as possible about its searching functions. And the tips have paid off. A great book that I have reading is "Google Your Family Tree" by Daniel M. Lynch. He has great tips for maximizing your google search.

By using the search term "Jotham * Viles", I found an article about his third wife, Laura Scutt. Apparently, her first husband, Silas Smith was not dead when Laura married Jotham Viles in 1879.

But Happy Dance find was found from "Frank * Kennard". My research has a twenty-one year gap in Frank's life. He is found in the 1870 census in Parsonsfield, York, Maine but then not again until his marriage to Sarah Ellen (Sadie) Kennedy in 1891. Frank was in Billings, Montana for some of this time. According to his obit, he was a contractor for the Northern Pacific Railroad. My google search found a 1883 City Directory for Billings with Frank listed AND the Billings Gazette carried some articles about his marriage to Sadie, the birth of Eveleen, and the death of another child.

Read an article or book on how to use Google and find your ancestors!

The Brewery Connection

Max (Mattaeus) Fueger b. 1832 in Kuelsheim, Baden, Germany immigrated to the United States in 1847 with his parents and siblings. They first went to New York so that Max could work for a brewery there. Then, in 1849, they settled in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where Max became a successful brewer. In 1851, he married Margaretha Schreck presumably in Wisconsin and had three children, Juliette (Julia) b. July 1852, Gustavus b. 6 Apr 1857, and Edward b. 1862 all born in Wisconsin.

In 1853, Peter Schreck and Friedericke (Fredericka) Heiliger immigrated to the United States and settled in an unknown place. Peter and Friedericka seemingly tied the knot and became Mr. and Mrs. Schreck. Peter was also a brewer. Peter was found in the 1855 Wisconsin Census in Milwaukee and in the 1857-1858 Milwaukee Directory as a malster. In 1858, he was given $500 by the Swiss Colonization Society of Tell City, Perry, Indiana to start a brewery. The Swiss Colonization Society also gave Peter two lots on April 18, 1859: Lot No. 4 in Block No 249 in Tell City, Indiana and Lot No. 11 in Block No. 101 in Tell City, Indiana both on recorded June 2, 1859. It was not a successful business. In 1863, Peter paid income taxes for his brewery in Shawneetown, Gallatin, Illinois. Apparently, Peter died. Fredericka then married Anton Ditt in Evansville, Vanderburgh, Indiana 16 October 1867. Three out of four cities where Peter and Fredericka have been found were along the Ohio River. No children between this union have been found.

Anton and Fredericka then have their first and only child, Juliette Wilhelmina Ditt together in Milwaukee, WI on 16 November 1868. Juliette was named after her baptismal sponsors, Wilhelm (William) Heitmann and Julia Fueger, daugher of Max Fueger, the brewer in Milwaukee. William and Julia married in 1871. They had three daughters, Alma b. Jan 1872, Flora b. 1874 and Clara b. 8 Jan 1876.

The question becomes, is Margaretha Schreck related to Peter Schreck? And if they are realted, how? Obviously, there is the brewer connection between Peter and Max. The question is did they meet in Germany or the United States. There is a Peter Schreck listed in the 1855 Wisconsin census living in Milwaukee. Further research needs to establish the connection between Margaretha, Peter and Fredericka.
To further establish the familial relationship, the son of Julia Ditt and Theodore Eberle, Alfred Max Edward Eberle b. 8 Aug 1892 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois is named after Max Fueger and Edward Fueger. The Alfred may have come from Alfred Van Eweyk, the husband of Flora Heitmann. Alma Heitmann was the baptismal sponsor for Alfred Eberle.

Biography of Max Fueger - Milwaukee

Lawrence and Margret Fueger were the parents of Max Fueger; he was born at Kuehleheim on the Tauber [Kuelsheim], Baden, Germany. He received a thorough common-school education. He had a wish, from boyhood, to become a brewer, and his father assisted him in his inclination. After leaving school he remained at home for nearly two year, working in his father’s shop as cooper.

He then went to learn the brewing trade, with Mr. Max Faeth, with whom he remained two years. He then traveled and worked in different breweries for four and a half years, in the various towns of Wertheim, Heidelberg, Miltenburg, Wuerzburg and Bischofsheim. This was in accordance with the German law requiring three years’ travel and journeywork before beginning any business as proprietor.

In July, 1847, Mr. Fueger came to New York, where he found work, and for a year and a half was employed in what was then the largest brewery in the country, on Washington street, in the old State’s Prison Building. In August, 1849, he came to Wisconsin and settled in Milwaukee, where he has since resided. He has been engaged in brewing all the time, and has worked in nearly all the large breeries in the city. He worked for Best and Co. for eleven years, eight years of which he was foreman. He has a thorough practical knowledge of his trade, careful and watchful of the process. He succeeded in producing a very superior beer, that has given to Best and Co. a more than national name and reputation. They feel and generously acknowledge this fact, and have often expressed their indebtedness to him.

Mr. Fueger left Best and Co. to purchase the interest of Benedict Caspari, in Obermann’s brewery, and entered into partnership with Jacob Obermann, with whom he is still associated. The business has increased steadily, and their progress has been great and constant. When Mr. Fueger entered the business, they were occupying a small frame building; they now have a large brick building, eighty feet long and forty feet wide, besides a large malt-house. Their business has become great and their capital has grown with the business.

Mr. Fueger was brought up a Catholic, but has since become more liberal in hi religious view.

He attributes his success to his thorough knowledge of his trade, to an ever watchful attention, and the cooperation of an excellent wife.

Source: The United State Biographical Dictionary p. 19

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Who Is Mrs. F. B. Kennard aka "Alice L."?

When Frank Benjamin Kennard married Sarah (Sadie) Ellen Kennedy in 1891, he was 40 years old. It would be logical to assume he may have had another wife or two. Frank was a civil engineer who received his education in Portland, Maine circa 1874 based on his engineering guide book. The part where Frank moves from Maine to Billings, Yellowstone, Montana is still a mystery.

From several written accounts, Frank worked on the Northern Pacific Railroad in Montana as a contractor. According to The Yellowstone Genealogy Forum, the third building built in Billings, Montana was for FB Kennard. Frank and his wives, Alice and Sarah, bought and sold many pieces of property in and around Billings, Montana from 1882 into the 1890s. In the early to mid 1890s, Frank and Sadie were located on ranch in Kinsey, Custer, Montana near Miles City.

Getting back to Alice. She bought and sold land with and without Frank in Billings from 1883 to 1885. Where did she and Frank meet? Where did they get married? Did they have children? Maybe such questions could be answered if they were found in the 1880. But .... I have looked for years for Frank even before I knew about the existence of Alice. They were most likely in some very desolated part of either Dakota Territory. Many of their associates were in Bismarck, Dakota Territory (now North Dakota) in 1880.

Sadly, Mrs. F. B. Kennard (Alice L.) died on July 31, 1886 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan. Figuring out where she died, took more than a little deducing. The following is the obituary for Alice L. Kennard published in “The Daily Gazette” in Billings, Montana on Friday, August 6, 1886:

Alice L. Kennard

The people of this community are greatly bereaved in the death of the dear woman whose names stands at the head of this sketch. Word comes to us through Mrs. Judge Goss who is now visiting in the East, that Mrs. Kennard was borne to the grave on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1886.
She was one the first ladies to arrive in Billings, and was well and favorably known by most of our people. She was a woman of exceptional conversational powers; bright, sprightly and animated. Always interesting, always consistent and kind, with a pleasant smile for all. She was willing beyond her strength ready to help and engage in every good work. She was eminently sociable in her instincts, and habits of thought and life; warm in her friendships, craving sympathy and love. She was also religious in her feelings and beliefs; a member of the Congregational church of this place, and as her pastor I can testify as to her Christian and womanly worth. She was a rare, good woman, and her loss is nearly irreparable. It gives me great pleasure to bear this emphatic testimony, of one so near and dear to us, and to all the people of this place, and I know they will heartily respond to the sentiments and feelings expressed.
Alice L. Kennard is dead. Her memory is blessed; her name a benediction and many of us will be better men and women from the recollections of her sweet and quiet spirit, her beautiful character and noble life. And while our hearts are sad, and our loss great, we sorrow not as those who mourn without hope.

S. A. Wallace
Billings, Mont., Aug. 6, 1886

I am very moved and touched by S. A. Wallace’s sketch. These kinds of finds make genealogy real and interesting. But, as a genealogist, S. A. Wallace did a poor job telling us WHO Alice L. Kennard was. Without the deeds from Billings, I may not have known that she was Frank’s wife. Since Pastor Wallace did not help much, the detective work had to begin. Clue one – Mrs. Judge Goss. Many genealogy doors are opened if one will research every name on the document. It turns out that Judge James R. Goss married Florence Lord who was born in Jackson County Michigan. James R. Goss was the witness on several Kennard deeds from Billings. Clue two – “now visiting in the East”. Apparently Florence Goss had not been in Montana at the time of Alice’s death but “in the East”. Well, maybe that meant that Florence was with Alice when she died. Alternatively, why would Florence know before others that Alice had died? And last but not least, WHERE is “East”?

Well, has posted Michigan Deaths 1867-1897. A search using the Search Record Pilot on “Kennard, death, 1886, Michigan” revealed that Mrs. F. B. Kennard died on July 31, 1886 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan. She was female, 36 years old, estimated year of birth 1850, born in Vermont, married, no names for father or mother, housekeeper. p 354 rn 2922.

So Alice died on 31 July 1886, and was buried on 3 August 1886. Next question, where was she buried? Not in Montana. In Michigan? In Vermont? Elsewhere? … Born in Vermont … close to Maine and to where Frank was born and family lived. But because Florence Lord Goss reported Alice’s death, and she was born in Michigan, was Florence a relative? A quick search of the census indicates that Florence’s parents, George and Delia Lord were both born in New York. Hmmm …… an online book indicated that a Lord family from Vermont removed to Michigan. Perhaps there is a connection. This is all speculation at this point. And of course, the death record of Mrs. F. B. Kennard has raised more questions that need to be investigated.