29 December 2011

Motivation Monday... Patience Pays Off

A while back, I shared how I was sending information packets to family members regarding their family history (see Treasure Chest Thursday: Sharing My Research). The patience is paying off. This week I received more pictures of my father, who passed away several years ago, when he was a child. I had no idea these pictures existed and I love how dang cute daddy was. He reminds me much of my children at this young age. I suspect he was around 18 months old. What do you think?

Daddy is super cute!

 Here's my cute daddy. I LOVE all the things you can see in this picture taken by C & D Photo Studio of Columbus, Ohio. I love the innocence as he's looking at his small hands (what is on it or does he not like his adorable winter set?). I love the comparison of him to the car, you can see how little he was. The spread out fingers remind me of my children when they were 18 months old. However, I have so many, many questions. Where was this taken? Whose car is that? Why were these pictures taken, besides daddy being adorable?

Here's my daddy Robert Geiszler with his mother Helen Zumstein.
The picture adds my grandmother to the mix. She looks so youthful, happy, and energetic. I barely knew my grandmother as we moved far away when I was 2. However, I like to think that she adored her only child and enjoyed being a mother from the relationship you can see in this picture.

Who is this lady?
 But when I received this picture, I have more questions. Since this is a side profile, it's really hard to tell if this is my grandmother or not. She's not wearing earrings and is wearing a jacket. The bodice underneath is different. Her hair style is also not exactly the same. However the picture appear to have been taken on the same day. I think these pictures are of Bob and his Aunt. But which one? It could be his father's sister, but the profile doesn't seem to fit the ones I have of Aunt Margie Geiszler Wasson. However, it could be one of Helen's sisters... Dorothy Zumstein Merrit or Faye Zumstein Gaa. I'm thinking she looks more like Faye. If it is Faye or Dorothy, why were these pictures in the possession of my father's cousin?

Though the questions are numerous and I don't have anyone alive to share the stories I have no further way learn about the photos. However, I adore seeing these photos and I am so glad that I have been so patient in my research efforts.

24 December 2011

Surname Saturday - Pusecker

German names have a variety of spellings which make them extremely difficult to research in the United States in the 1800s. Although Pusecker is a collateral line, the family traveled with the Mack family which is one of my great-grandmothers. Additionally, one Pusecker family purchased land next to a Mack family and a Geiszler family. I'm researching the line to see if I can find clues to my Geiszler/Mack families, especially since a Pusecker married a Mack. (Confused yet?)

In any case, I've been trying to scour the US Census records in Franklin county, Ohio. Trying to find the records is not as simple as using a soundex or phonetic search to the Pusecker name. Finally, I started compiling a list of name variations as I happened to uncover them. I verified wives & children, birth/birth place, and residence history to make sure I had the right person. In any case, I don't want to go into all the strategies I employed to come up with the following list. Instead, I wanted to share the list for two reasons: a) for any other Pusecker relatives who are having trouble finding their family members and b) to show how very, very different the names can be spelled.

Here's a list of spelling variations I've found for just three Pusecker males in Franklin county, Ohio Census records between their arrival in 1845 to 1920.


Buckeser
Busacker
Busacker
Buseker
Pasenger
Persaker
Puesecker
Pusaker
Pusecke
Pusecoier
Puseker
Pusicker

One would think the sames would appear in the soundex/phonetic searches but their just different enough that they don't always make the list. Now that I know, I'm less frustrated when searching for these kindred collateral lines. I haven't made any major breakthroughs on the Geiszler/Mack lines, but I have discovered two records that I'm interested in searching. First the 1890 Veterans Schedules and U.S., Indexed County Land Ownership Maps, 1860-1918. These two records could help me find more relatives that I hadn't considered before. Thankfully, they are online, makes it easy for a mother with young children at home to do research. Another record worth researching is the U.S. Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles. Unfortunately, this record is only available as an index online. Someday I'll have some time to take a look at the actual records. Nevertheless, these three records are worth examining for the Geiszler/Macks in my family.

09 December 2011

Surname Saturday... Charles Allen Smith

With a name like Charles Allen Smith, is there any wonder how easy it might be to mix him up? Never! Okay, that's wrong. Charles is the grandson of my 'newest' great+ grandfather David Smith.

In family research, I had a Charles Allen Smith married to a Rhoda J Prickett. Charles was from Ohio but died in Michigan. The dates were pretty fuzzy, things like abt 1859.

Using the GenSmarts program with RootsMagic, I came across a suggestion to look into the Michigan State Census of 1900. I don't know why hints like these come up and then I'm taken to Ancestry.com US Federal Census 1900, but I digress. In any case, a large list resulted from the name Charles Smith. That's to be expected. Since I don't like the filtering format on Ancestry.com, I decided to go over to FamilySearch.org. I really like their filtering system. I can fine tune a search quickly, casting narrow and broad scopes easily.

In any case, I came across an entry for Charles A Smith and Rebecca E Prickett. The dates lined up with my Charles and Rhoda; however, Rebecca and Rhoda seem a bit of a stretch. I never found a Rhoda married to Charles. I revisited my family records and noticed the source a family story presented by a distant cousin to Charles. So, the validity is suspect until proven true. With the last name Prickett lining up with a marriage to Charles A Smith, I decided to do further investigation.

I went over the New FamilySearch website which is the family tree database. In it, I found Charles married to either: Rhoda J Prickett, Rebecca Elizabeth Pricket, and/or Ida Alice Prickett. Further investigation into the tree resulted in seeing Rhoda, Rebecca, and Ida having three husbands and multiple children all married and born in such a chronological order that there had to be a merging error.

I won't go into all the fine details, but suffice it to say, I confirmed my suspicion that Charles indeed married Rebecca and that Rhoda was her sister. As I separated out Rhoda and Rebecca, it became clear that Ida was a separate sister as well. As I separated these sisters apart, I wanted some proof to my suspicions. I was able to following Charles & Rebecca Elizabeth (who usually went by Elizabeth) through the census records and marriage record. I have not yet found a death record or an obituary for them, but that's next. I'm certain that if I followed Ida and Rhoda through the genealogical records I'd further confirm my suspsicion of the three sister merger.

It was really fun to untangle the tree, correct my perpetuated inaccuracy, and then remember to source my information should a question arise in the future.

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