52 Ancestors: #22 Writing the Weckering Family Story with Missing Pieces

The Short Story

Pierre WECKERING was born on 12 June 1752 in Brandenbourg, Luxembourg.[1] He married Margaretha LASCHEID before 1780. Margaretha was born about 1753 in Niederschlinder. Pierre and Margaretha had the following children.

  1. Antoine “Anton” WECKERING was born on 1 July 1781 in Unterschlinder.[2], [3] He married Marguerite MÜLLER (1773-1841), daughter of Nicolas MÜLLER and Marie Cathérine COLLING, on 8 February 1799 in Vianden.[2] Marguerite died on 7 April 1841 in Lipperscheid.[4] She gave him seven children, two are known to have died young. Antoine also married Margaretha BERNARD, daughter of Pierre BERNARD and Antoinette GROEBER, on 30 May 1843 in Bourscheid.[3] She gave birth to six children, only one lived to adulthood (my children’s 3rd great-grandmother). Antoine WECKERING became the father of his 13th child at age 72! He died on 25 March 1857 in Hoscheid.[5] His second wife Margaretha died on 15 April 1878 in Ettelbruck.[6]
  2. Michel WECKERING was born on 7 December 1781 in Schlindermanderscheid. He was baptized on 8 December 1781 in Brandenbourg. His godparents were Michel MERSCH and Maria SERRES. No trace of him has been found after his baptism.[7]
  3. Corneil WECKERING was born abt. 1786 in Niederschlindermanderscheid. He was never married and died on 16 January 1857 in Hoscheid.[8]

Margaretha LASCHEID, the mother of these three children, died in 1792 in Hoscheid.[2]

Pierre remarried after his first wife’s death to Margaretha KOENIG before 1797. Margaretha was born about 1767 in Michelau. Her parents are unknown. Pierre and his second wife, Margaretha had the following children

  1. Marguerite WECKERING  was born on 13 January 1796 in Hoscheid.[9] She never married but was the mother of a daughter born in 1819.[10] Marguerite died on 1 June 1864 in Hoscheid.[11]
  2. Theodore WECKERING was born on 27 April 1800 in Hoscheid.[12] He married Catharina HELLES (1802-1864) on 16 January 1826 in Wiltz.[13] They had at least 3 children born between 1827 and 1840 in Wiltz. Catharina died on 23 Mar 1864[14] and Theodore died on 13 June 1881[15], both in Wiltz.
  3. Theodore WECKERING was born on 2 January 1804 in Hoscheid.[16] He married Margaretha DUPONT (1802-1890) on 5 June 1828 in Ermsdorf.[17] They were the parents of at least 2 children born between 1834 and 1837 in Eppeldorf. Theodore died on 20 June 1867[18] and Margaretha died on 27 May 1890[19], both in Eppeldorf
  4. Nicolas WECKERING was born on 12 July 1808 in Hoscheid.[20] Nicolas married Anne Marie THURM (1812-1884) on 23 April 1834 in Hoscheid.[21] They were the parents of at least 9 children born between 1834 and 1854 in Hoscheid. Anne Marie died on 28 May 1884[22] and Nicolas died on 19 Mar 1892[23], both in Hoscheid.
  5. Anne Marie WECKERING was born on 1 January 1811 in Hoscheid.[24] She married Mathias MANGERS (1806-1874) on 20 October 1836 in Wilwerwiltz.[25] They were the parents of at least 8 children born between 1837 and 1853 in Enscherange. Mathias died on 18 February 1874[26] and Anne Marie died on 7 March 1877[27], both in Enscherange.
  6. Mathias WECKERING was born on 23 August 1814 in Hoscheid.[28] He married Marie WEIS (1819-1858)on 13 March 1844 in Wilwerwiltz.[29] They were the parents of at least five children born between 1844 and 1852 in Enscherange. Marie died on 18 May 1858 in Enscherange.[30] Mathias died on 1 December 1891 in Luxembourg City.[31]

Pierre WECKERING died on 17 March 1820 in Hoscheid.[32] His youngest child was only 5 years old when he died. His second wife Margaretha KOENIG died on 3 March 1849 in Hoscheid.[33]

The Longer Story Using Substitute Pieces of the Puzzle

Pierre WECKERING, a 5th great-grandfather of my children, very likely left a lot more records than I was able to find. His parents chose to live in Brandenbourg where his paternal grandparents had also lived. Normally research is simpler when families stayed in one location. However, the Brandenbourg parish records are in a muddle for many of the years Pierre lived there. To be more precise, from the time he was 12 years old until he turned 50. The period of his life when he married, had children, lost his first wife, married again, and had more children.

Cover Sheet of a Brandenbourg parish records collection [34]
Cover Sheet of a Brandenbourg parish records collection [35]

I attended a lecture on Latin in the Luxembourg church records last Thursday. As I have been doing a lot of research in the church records this year, the information the lecturer shared was an eye-opener.

At the lecture I learned two copies were kept of the records by the priests of the parish. Where both copies were available, they were microfilmed by FamilySearch. This is helpful as the handwriting in one copy may be more legible than in the other due to fading or even those pesky mice who ate a whole through the surname of your ancestor.

Over the years, as the borders changed, some of the books were split up between the parishes in Luxembourg and those across the borders in France, Belgium, and Luxembourg. During the French Empire parts of Luxembourg belonged to France and church records for the years 1808-1810 may be found in the diocese of Metz, France.

There are also gaps in the record keeping. Some parishes were large and included several towns. The priests did not always carry their registers with them and made the entries later messing up the chronological order.

Other church records are lost forever. Destroyed by natural elements (insects, rats, dampness), hidden by the clergy, or, in some cases, torn out of the ledgers by people who stole the records or by others who had well-meaning reasons for making a record disappear.

No matter what the reason for the missing records, we are still able to write the stories of our ancestors with the remaining records.

The (Documented) Early Years

Pierre WECKERING (1752-1820) was born and baptized on 12 June 1752 in Brandenbourg. His parents were Michel WECKERING and his wife Anna Maria. His godfather was the Reverend Father Petro (Peter) WEISGERBER, a pastor in Aalschett (sic, Alscheid). His godmother was Maria Elisabeth DALEIDEN of Vianden.[1]

1752 Baptismal Record [1]

Some priests wrote short entries while others wrote up documents which filled one, two, and even three pages. Still, the compact and precise entries, when translated correctly, include more information than one sees at first glance.

In the above record, the abbreviation R:D: (reverendi domini) in front of the name of the godfather gives more precise information. Without this, a beginner would automatically translate the word pastore following the godfather’s name to shepherd as his occupation. In this case, Petro WEISGEBER was a Catholic priest in Alscheid. This detail was the key to opening the door in young Peter’s maternal line – to be written about in a future post.

We don’t do research in chronological order. We work backward, forward, and sideways to find the relevant information for each individual. In Pierre’s case, I knew the names of his parents as other researchers had made the connection. To confirm them, I searched for his baptismal record (above) and found it did not include his mother’s maiden name. The next step was to locate the baptismal records of his five known siblings, names and dates being provided by researchers who have their GEDCOM files online. [The names and dates found in other people’s files are used as clues and to assist in finding the records to prove the connection.]

After locating all of the baptismal records in Vianden, I took a closer look at each. Pierre’s three youngest siblings’ baptismal records included their mother’s maiden name: DALEYDEN. This was important as no marriage record was found for Michel WECKERING and Anna Maria DALEYDEN. The date of marriage is presently being estimated at before 1751, the birth year of the oldest known child.

It was interesting to hear the lecturer mention things I had already noticed. For example, the importance of the godfather and godmother in the baptismal record. A male child always received the name of the godfather and a female child that of the godmother. This rule is very useful when the priest omitted the name of the child on the baptismal record.

A closer look at the baptismal records of all six children of Michel and Anna Maria showed DALEYDEN/DALEIDEN individuals were acting as godparents for some of the children.

The (Undocumented) Middle Years

Pierre WECKERING was married twice. No marriage records were found. However, the records of his children have been helpful in proving his first wife was Margaretha LASCHEID (d. 1792) and his second wife was Margaretha KOENIG (1767-1849).

First Marriage and the Children

To prove the first marriage I searched for records documenting children born about 1780 to 1792. Important information was gleaned from the 1843 marriage record of my children’s 4th great-grandparents Antoine WECKERING and (his second wife) Margaretha BERNARD.

From the 1843 marriage record I learned:
1) Antoine was born 1 July 1781 in Unterschlinder.
2) Antoine’s mother was Margaretha LASCHEID who died in the year 1792.
3) Antoine’s father was Pierre WECKERING who died 17 March 1820.

To date, no death or burial entry has been found for the 1792 death of Margaretha LASCHEID. Only one baptismal record was found for a child born to Pierre and Margaretha. It, however, caused a conflict with the date of birth found for Antoine on both of his marriage records.

Michel WECKERING’s baptismal record [7]
At eight in the evening of 7 December 1781 Michel was born to Pierre WECKERING and Margaretha LASCHET (variation of the spelling of the maiden name) and was baptized the following day. His godparents were Michel MERSCH of Schlindermanderscheid and Maria SERRES of Hoscheid. One would imagine with the length of this baptismal record there would be many more details which could be used. The priest who entered the information was very specific about the places the parents were from including the town name, parish, Duchy of Luxembourg in the Archdiocese of Trier.[7]

The clergymen who wrote in the parish registers were not all accomplished Latinists and there is a marked difference between classical Latin and medieval Latin found in the church records of the 17th to 19th century.

Michel’s brother Antoine was born on 1 July 1781 per both of his marriage records. This was only five months before Michel was born. Antoine was underage when he married in 1799. Is it possible he was even younger? Was his birth date seen in the 1843 marriage record copied from the 1799 marriage record?

Corneil WECKERING, the third child of Pierre and his first wife, showed up in the Luxembourg census for the years 1843, 1846, 1847, 1849, 1851, 1852, and 1855 with his half-sister Margaretha. The age range seen for Corneil on the census suggested he was born before Margaretha LASCHEID died. Although I searched and searched through the Brandenbourg church records, I did not find a baptismal record for Corneil. His death in 1857 was reported by his half-sister Margaretha’s son-in-law and included the names of his parents: Peter WECKERING and Margaretha LASCHEND, a variation on the spelling of LASCHEID or LASCHET.

Second Marriage and the Children

Pierre’s marriage to Margaretha KOENIG is well documented even without a record of marriage. The marriage records of four sons and a daughter all include the names of both parents, Pierre WECKERING and his wife Margaretha KOENIG. They also document the dates of birth for these five children.

Birth or baptismal records were not found for all of the children. Their oldest daughter Margaretha and first son Theodore were born during the time period the Brandenbourg church records are deficient. Their son Nicolas and daughter Anne Marie were born during the years for which the church records ended up in Metz and the civil records are also lacking. Only their second son Theodore and youngest son Mathias had civil birth records.

The date of birth of the oldest daughter Margaretha, who never married, cannot be documented with a reliable record. The census records found for her show she was born 13 January 1796 (1843), 3 November 1802 (1846), or 6 January 1800 (1849). The first appears to be the most likely as her siblings were born with 3-4 years between each. In 1851 she was seen as 52 years old when her illegitimate daughter married. At the time of death in 1864 her age was 58 which would place her birth at abt. 1806. Although I don’t trust the age to be correct on the record, the informant, her son-in-law, knew her parents were Peter WECKERING and Margaretha KOENIG.

I am comfortable with the research done to prove the mothers of the children of Pierre WECKERING. I still need to investigate the parentage of his first wife Margaretha LASCHEID who was the 5th great-grandmother of my children. Preliminary searches for the surname LASCHEID did not turn up any other persons with the name. However, I have a tiny hope of perhaps finding her parents as a baptismal record turned up for Maria Catharina LASCHET, daughter of Nicolas LASCHET and Catharina MEYERS, born 22 February 1753 in Schlinder(manderscheid) with godparents Joannes MERSCH of Schlinder and Maria Catharina BINSFELD of Hoscheid. I may be analyzing godparents as Michel MERSCH was the godfather of Michel WECKERING, the only child of Pierre WECKERING and Margaretha LASCHEID for whom a record was found. Coincidence?

bestwishescathy1

Further reading material:
Latin Genealogical Word List
The National Archives’ (UK) Beginners’ Latin
The category Languages & Translations » Latin on Cyndi’s List

Sources:
[1] Luxembourg, registres paroissiaux, 1601-1948 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Brandenbourg > Baptêmes 1749-1765, mariages 1746-1764, sépultures 1746-1763 > image 9 of 87. 1752 Baptismal Record (left page, first entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89WM-S74?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-HZP%3A1500940601%2C1501091800 : accessed 12 June 2017).
[2] Luxembourg, Registres d’état civil, 1662-1941 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Vianden > Naissances 1829-1890 Mariages 1797-1833 > image 1010 of 1493;. 1799 Marriage Record (page 1 of 3). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-11589-60838-94?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-929:130504801,130760501 : accessed 11 September 2015) and 1799 Marriage Record (page 2 and 3 of 3). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-11589-63329-38?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-929:130504801,130760501 : accessed 11 September 2015).
[3] Ibid., Bourscheid > Naissances 1872-1890 Mariages 1797-1890 > image 995 of 1447. 1843 Marriage Record No. 11. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-11561-51550-20?cc=1709358&wc=9RYW-C68:129628601,129997101 : accessed 8 September 2015).
[4] Ibid., Bourscheid > Décès 1797-1890 > image 438 of 1157. 1841 Death Record No. 19. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12650-33893-10?cc=1709358&wc=9RY8-N38:129628601,129626302 : accessed 11 September 2015).
[5] Ibid., Hoscheid > Décès 1851-1890 > image 47 of 296. 1857 Death Record No. 8. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12341-67708-27?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2B8:n401754830 : accessed 09 Apr 2013).
[6] Ibid., Ettelbruck > Décès 1814-1881 > image 1356 of 1379. 1878 Death Record No. 36. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11675-61468-76?cc=1709358&wc=9RYS-FM9:129625001,1290913101 : accessed 8 September 2015).
[7] Luxembourg Parish Records, Brandenbourg > Baptêmes 1781-1782, mariages 1781-1782 > image 31 of 101. 1781 Baptismal Record (right page). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89WM-S9WP?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-CX9%3A1500940601%2C1500940632 : accessed 12 June 2017).
[8] Luxembourg Civil Records, Hoscheid > Décès 1851-1890 > image 45 of 296. 1857 Death Record No. 1. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6L8S-XRP?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-4WP%3A129844501%2C129625502 : 17 July 2014).
[9] Luxembourg, Volkszählungen 1843-1900 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Hoscheid > 1843 > image 60 of 137. Corneil Weckering household. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1961-32359-9396-97?cc=2037957&wc=M5LT-ZV3:345858701,345863501 : accessed 15 June 2017).
[10] Luxembourg Civil Records, Hoscheid > Naissances 1798-1850 > image 158 of 459. 1819 Birth Record No.7. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-DB1Q-SYW?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-6TR%3A129844501%2C129804701 : accessed 15 June 2017).
[11] Ibid., Hoscheid > Décès 1851-1890 > image 103 of 296. 1864 Death Record No. 6. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6L8S-JRM?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-4WP%3A129844501%2C129625502 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[12] Ibid., Wiltz > Mariages 1797-1885 > image 569 of 1502. 1826 Marriage Record No. 2. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-DRZQ-C8T?cc=1709358&wc=9RYW-HZ9%3A130592301%2C130729201 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[13] Idem
[14] Luxembourg Civil Records, Wiltz > Décès 1863-1890 > image 37 of 784. 1864 Death Record No. 27. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-D447-SHJ?cc=1709358&wc=9RT1-YWL%3A130592301%2C130592302 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[15] Ibid., Wiltz > Décès 1863-1890 > image 570 of 784. 1881 Death Record No. 63. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-D447-SB3?cc=1709358&wc=9RT1-YWL%3A130592301%2C130592302 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[16] Ibid., Wiltz > Décès 1863-1890 > image 570 of 784. 1881 Death Record No. 63. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-D447-SB3?cc=1709358&wc=9RT1-YWL%3A130592301%2C130592302 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[17] Ibid.,, Ermsdorf > Naissances 1813-1823, 1792-1823, 1824-1890 Mariages 1797-1823, 1824-1836 > image 1185 of 1453. 1828 Marriage Record (right page). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-DBR3-F59?cc=1709358&wc=9RYS-4WL%3A129624501%2C129785801 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[18] Ibid., Ermsdorf > Décès 1882-1890 > image 54 of 57. 1890 Death Record No. 13. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-65QS-S52?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-RM9%3A129624501%2C129706801 : 17 July 2014).
[19] Ibid., Ermsdorf > Décès 1863-1871 > image 39 of 80. 1867 Death Record No. 11. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-65QS-MPZ?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-RMD%3A129624501%2C129664401 : accessded 17 June 2017).
[20] Ibid., Hoscheid > Naissances 1851-1890 Mariages 1800-1890 Décès 1798-1826 > image 875 of 1491. 1834 Marriage Record No. 4. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-D1SS-833?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-JWL%3A129844501%2C129973001 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[21] Idem
[22] Luxembourg Civil Records, Hoscheid > Naissances, mariages, décès 1891-1894 > image 58 of 77. 1892 Death Record No. 4. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-DR7Q-XQJ?cc=1709358&wc=9RYM-N38%3A129844501%2C129717601 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[23] Ibid., Hoscheid > Décès 1851-1890 > image 260 of 296. 1884 Death Record No. 7. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6L8S-JBW?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-4WP%3A129844501%2C129625502 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[24] Ibid., Wilwerwiltz > Naissances 1866-1890 Mariages 1797, 1800-1890 Décès 1797-1878 > image 592 of 1495. 1836 Marriage Record No. 10. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XC47-152?cc=1709358&wc=9RYD-7M9%3A130594601%2C130709301 : accessed 17 June 2016).
[25] Ibid., Wilwerwiltz > Naissances 1866-1890 Mariages 1797, 1800-1890 Décès 1797-1878 > image 592 of 1495. 1836 Marriage Record No. 10. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XC47-152?cc=1709358&wc=9RYD-7M9%3A130594601%2C130709301 : accessed 17 June 2016).
[26] Ibid., Wilwerwiltz > Naissances 1866-1890 Mariages 1797, 1800-1890 Décès 1797-1878 > image 1448 of 1495. 1874 Death Record No. 4. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XC47-1FD?cc=1709358&wc=9RYD-7M9%3A130594601%2C130709301 : accessed 18 June 2017).
[27] Ibid., Wilwerwiltz > Naissances 1866-1890 Mariages 1797, 1800-1890 Décès 1797-1878 > image 1478 of 1495. 1877 Death Record No. 3. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XC4W-3FT?cc=1709358&wc=9RYD-7M9%3A130594601%2C130709301 : accessed 15 June 2017).
[28] Ibid., Hoscheid > Naissances 1798-1850 > image 127 of 459. 1814 Birth Record (left page, bottom). “Luxembourg Registres d’état civil, 1662-1941,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-DB13-KGD?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-6TR%3A129844501%2C129804701 : accessed 12 June 2017).
[29] Ibid., Wilwerwiltz > Naissances 1866-1890 Mariages 1797, 1800-1890 Décès 1797-1878 > image 666 of 1495. 1844 Marriage Record No. 2. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XC4W-SVY?cc=1709358&wc=9RYD-7M9%3A130594601%2C130709301 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[30] Ibid., Wilwerwiltz > Naissances 1866-1890 Mariages 1797, 1800-1890 Décès 1797-1878 > image 1316 of 1495. 1858 Death Record No. 13. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XC47-YBX?cc=1709358&wc=9RYD-7M9%3A130594601%2C130709301 : accessed 17 June 2017).
[31] Ibid., Luxembourg > Naissances, mariages, décès 1892-1894 > image 988 of 1349. 1891 Death Record No. 380. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6P89-C71?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-K68%3A130045801%2C130969201 : accessed 17 June 2017),.
[32] Ibid., Hoscheid > Naissances 1851-1890 Mariages 1800-1890 Décès 1798-1826 > image 1445 of 1491. 1820 Death Record. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-11672-59000-89?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-JWL:129844501,129973001 : accessed 14 September 2015).
[33] Ibid., Hoscheid > Décès 1827-1850 > image 150 of 162. 1849 Death Record No. 2. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6L8S-67J?cc=1709358&wc=9RYZ-4WR%3A129844501%2C129896301 : accessed 15 June 2017).
[34] Luxembourg Parish Records, Brandenbourg > Baptêmes 1764-1784, mariages 1764-1784, sépultures 1764-1784 > image 1 of 128 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-92FS?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-HZ8%3A1500940601%2C1500940602 : accessed 16 June 2017).
[35] Ibid., Brandenbourg > Baptêmes 1764-1784, mariages 1764-1784, sépultures 1764-1784 > image 1 of 128 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-92FS?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-HZ8%3A1500940601%2C1500940602 : accessed 16 June 2017).

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