Anton WELTER, son of Johann Bernard WELTER and Maria BRIMERS, was born on 15 December 1773 on Ernzerhof outside of Ernzen. He was baptized the same day in Ernzen.
Anton was the only son, a middle child, but also the youngest as his two younger sisters died at an early age. His mother Maria died in 1781 leaving an 8-year-old Anton and his two older sisters. Her widower Bernard, as he was known, married again six months after her death. He and his second wife Maria BARTZ had a daughter nearly nine months after the marriage. The baby only survived two months. Bernard and Maria did not have any other children. Anton’s step-mother died in 1791. By this time Bernard’s children were nearly all grown. His oldest daughter Elisabeth had been married two years at the time and Catharina would marry in 1800. His only son Anton was nearly 18 years old. Bernard never married again.
Anna Katharina HENNES (1779-1845)
Anna Katharina HENNES, daughter of Johann HENNES and Magdalena MÜLLER, was born on 14 May 1779 in Holsthum.
Like Anton WELTER, Anna Katharina was a middle child and had two older sisters. Her father Johann died in 1786 when his wife was pregnant with their youngest child. Matthias, their only son, was born two months later. Two months after giving birth to her deceased husband’s child, Magdalena MÜLLER married Johann TRAMPERT. Magdalena was 44 and Johann was 27. With this marriage, her husband took on the responsibility of five step-children between 9 years and 2 months. Magdalena and her second husband did not have children of their own.
Anna Katharina and Anton marry in 1803
Anna Katharina HENNES married Anton WELTER on 23 March 1803 in Ernzen. They had three children during their first seven years of marriage. Their first, Bernard was born in 1805 and named after his paternal grandfather. A record of baptism has not been searched for but it is likely his grandfather was his godfather as was the practice of the times. Their next two children were girls: Elisabeth was born on 31 January 1807 and Katharina WELTER on 21 July 1810.
Before they had more children there were several deaths in the family. Anna Katharina’s step-father Johann TRAMPERT died on 19 August 1812 at the age of 55 years. Anton and Anna Katharina youngest daughter Katharina died on 5 December 1812 at the age of nearly two and a half years. Anton’s father Johann Bernard WELTER died on 27 March 1813 at the age of 76 years. Almost a week later the family would be attending another funeral. Anna Katharina’s mother Magdalena MÜLLER died on 2 April 1813 at the age of 70 years. Three deaths in four months make me wonder if they were caused by disease or a hard winter.
A year later Anna Katharina and Anton named their son born on 4 April 1814 Peter. He lived only ten months dying on 6 February 1815. A little more than two years later another son was born and named Peter. He was born on 10 August 1817 and died on 12 May 1819 at the age of twenty months.
Anton and Anna Katharina’s youngest child, Anna Maria was born on 3 April 1822. Anna Katharina was 43 and Anton was going on 49.
Their oldest son Bernard married Katharina WEBER on 2 April 1837 in Aach (Eifel). Katharina was born on 2 January 1795 in Aach to Peter WEBER und Susanna KREIN.
The mother of this family, Anna Katharina HENNES died on 9 March 1845 in Ernzen and was buried two days later. Her widower Anton was left with three children, two of whom were married.
The youngest daughter Anna Maria married Peter STEIL on 18 February 1846 in Ernzen. Peter was born on 3 January 1810 in Berdorf (Luxembourg).
The father of this family, Anton WELTER died on 26 January 1849 in Ernzen and was buried two days later.
After their parents’ deaths
The oldest of the WELTER children, Bernard died on 1 February 1855 in Ernzen at the age of 55. His widow Katharina WEBER died two decades later on 30 April 1875 in Ernzen and was buried two days later. They may have remained childless.
Anna Maria, the youngest of the WELTER children, died on 9 January 1861 and was buried two days later. She was 38 years old and left a husband and four children.
Elisabeth’s husband Hubert WEIMANN died at the age of 67 on 29 October 1872 in Ernzen and was buried two days later. He left her with three children.
Peter STEIL, Anna Maria’s widower, died on 21 December 1872 in Ernzen and was buried two days later. He was survived by two daughters and a son. The son emigrated to North America during the year and likely only learning of the death of his father after the new year.
A Peter STEIL, age 18, was found on a passenger list with an arrival in New York on 20 May 1872 via Liverpool, England. A match for Peter STEIL born 12 January 1854 in Ernzen was not found in America. He cannot be the same person as the Peter Steil 1852-1913 who lived in Stearns County, Minnesota, as he came over in 1867. Suggestions on other spelling for the STEIL name would be appreciated.
Elisabeth WELTER, the last living child of Anton and Anna Katharina, died on 24 September 1877 in Ernzen and was buried three days later. Elisabeth, my third great-grandmother, was 70 years old. She left three children who would live to see the outbreak of World War I. Only one of these would live to see the end of it.
How are the DNA matches looking for this branch?
One of the first Shared Ancestor Hints on Ancestry DNA for my brother’s test was for a match who descends from Johann HENNES, the father of Anna Katharina HENNES.
The person who matches was quick to reply to my short message sent in June 2016 and we have not corresponded since then. It’s been over a year since she has signed in. I really need to get in touch with her as I realized while writing this post that we have another set of common ancestors who do not show up as a hint. She does not have the parents of Mathias HENNES’ wife Elisabetha MALAMBRÉ. My 4th great-grandmother Susanna MALAMBRÉ was Elisabetha’s sister. This match is a 6th cousin through Johann HENNES and Magdalena MÜLLER and through Gérard MALAMBRÉ and Barbara BIESDORF.
Mathias HENNES, the brother of Anna Katharina HENNES, had two sons who went to America. The youngest son Michael went in 1837 at the age of 21. He appears to have not been married and therefore without known descendants. The older son Peter went in 1856 with his wife and their seven children. They had lived in Silberberg/Nusbaum since their marriage in 1836, the year before Michael left. They met up with him in Lemont, Cook County, Illinois, and he was in their household at the time of the 1860 census.
At the time I found this match I did not know so many people with connections in my tree left the Eifel area for America. This gives me another reason which may convince people to upload their raw data to GEDmatch. I haven’t been able to map any of the maternal chromosomes as matches are few and hard to figure out. It would be nice to get this tiny 14 centimorgans segment labeled but with there being two sets of MRCAs I’d need more matches to triangulate.
Sources:  Luxembourg, registres paroissiaux, 1601-1948 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Echternach > Baptêmes 1761-1797 > image 66 of 131. 1773 Baptismal Record, right page, 3rd entry. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-32399-12771-29?cc=2037955 : accessed 9 November 2016).  Ibid., Echternach > Baptêmes, mariages, décès 1779-1783 > image 102 of 177. 1781 Death Record, right page, bottom. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-32400-11740-46?cc=2037955 : 9 January 2015) and part 2 of 1781 Death Record, left page top. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1951-32400-11629-47?cc=2037955 : 9 January 2015).  Richard Schaffner, compiler, Familienbuch 2 der Pfarrei St. Marcus Ernzen bei Irrel, Daten bis 1798 aus den Kirchenbüchern der Pfarrei Echternach (damals fur Ernzen zuständig); mit: Ernzen-Hof, Fölkenbach und teilweise auch Prümzurlay (Häuser der rechten Flußseite) 1680-1899 (compiled in 2000), p. 237-238, Family #839. Welter-Brimers and Welter-Bartz.  Luxembourg Church Records, Echternach > Baptêmes, mariages, décès 1779-1783 > image 122 of 177. 1782 Baptismal Record, left page. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-32400-11658-39?cc=2037955 : 9 January 2015).  Ibid., Echternach > Baptêmes, mariages, décès 1779-1783 > image 140 of 177. 1782 Death Record, right page, 2nd from bottom. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1951-32400-11497-19?cc=2037955 : 9 January 2015).  Ibid., Echternach > Baptêmes, mariages, décès 1788-1797 > image 118 of 331. 1791 Death Record, left page. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1971-32401-8336-15?cc=2037955 : 9 January 2015). FB Ernzen, p. 234, Family #830. Welter-Hennes.  Werner Neumann, Familienbuch der ehemaligen Pfarrei Schankweiler mit dem Pfarrort Schankweiler und den Filialen Holsthum und Peffingen, pg. 79, Family #485. Hennes-Mühler. FB Schankweiler, pg. 238, Family #1377. Trampert-Müller. FB Ernzen, p. 234, Family #830. Welter-Hennes.  Germany Births and Baptisms, 1558-1898 / Deutschland Geburten und Taufen, 1558-1898, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 462714. Elisabetha Welter, christened 31 Jan 1807 in Sankt Markus Katholisch, Ernzen, Rheinland, Prussia; father Antonii Welter; mother Chatarinae Hennes.(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NTJ5-T7S : accessed 15 October 2017). FB Ernzen, pg. 219, Family #775. Trampert-Müller.  Germany Marriages, 1558-1929 / Deutschland, Heiraten, 1558-1929, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 462,714. Hubertum Wayman and Elisabetham Welter, married 12 Feb 1835; citing Sankt Markus Katholisch, Ernzen, Rheinland, Prussia. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JH8P-DBZ : accessed 15 October 2017). FB Ernzen, p. 235, Family #832. Welter-Weber. FB Ernzen, pg. 203, Family #719. Steil-Welter.  Luxembourg, Registres d’état civil, 1662-1941 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Berdorf > Naissances 1799-1858 > image 84 of 534. 1810 Birth Record No. 1. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-6S5H-ND?cc=1709358&wc=9RY3-HZ9%3A129626101%2C129760301 : accessed 22 October 2017).  Richard Schaffner, compiler, Familienbuch der Pfarrei St. Petrus Nusbaum in der Südeifel mit Nusbaum, Nusbaumerhöhe, Freilingen, Freilingerhöhe, Enzen, Silberberg, Stockigt, und Rohrbach 1722-1899, PDF (Kordel bei Trier, 2001), pg. 113-114, Family #464. Hennes-Hostert.
Week 25 (June 18-24) – The Old Homestead:Have you visited an ancestral home? Do you have photos of an old family house? Do you have homesteading ancestors?
Homesteading, Ancestral Home, and a Famous Cousin
None of my American ancestors took advantage of the Homestead Act. But homesteading is not restricted to settling on goverment land and farming it. Homesteading was and is a lifestyle of self-sufficiency. The farther back we go in our families trees the more independent our ancestors were. They provided for themselves through farming, hunting, home preservation of foodstuffs, and, in the case of my 2nd great-granfather Jean FRANTZ, a linenweaver, the production of textiles.
While we are on the subject of homesteading and ancestral homes, when I was a child we visited a FRANTZ family in Mamer, Luxembourg, to watch a bicycle race. I have no idea if the house was lived in by my FRANTZ ancestors, i.e. an ancestral home.
At the time I was also unaware of the significance and the connections between FRANTZ, the town of Mamer and cycling. Family tradition, once we genealogists get involved, is often debunked. However the story of my grandmother being a cousin of the famous Tour de France winner was proven true. My grandmother Marie Marcelle FOURNELLE (1909-2005) and Nicolas FRANTZ (1899-1985) were 3rd cousins – not quite as close as the story told. Their common ancestors were Paulus FRANTZ (1763-1847) and his wife Susanne KEIFFER (1754-1808).
Nicolas FRANTZ took second place in the Tour de France in 1924 and 1926 and was the winner of the tour in 1927 and 1928. In 1928 Nicolas was the first, and to date only winner of the Tour de France, to wear the maillot jaune, the yellow jersey, during the entire 20 days of the race, from the first day, due to his being the previous year’s winner, to the last day.
Having a Tour de France winner as a cousin is amazing. Even more so is I actually enjoy the same sport he excelled in. This is quite a statement for a girl who did everything to get out of doing sports while growing up.
Jean “Johann” FRANTZ and Marie “Maria” MAJERUS
My 2nd great-grandfather Jean FRANTZ was born in Mamer on 3 December 1837 to Jean FRANTZ (1794-1880) and his wife Elisabeth “Elise” FRISCH (1800-1880). On 16 February 1870 he married Marie MAJERUS. Marie was born in Mamer on 19 June 1850 to Jean MAJERUS (1817-1887) and his wife Marie TRAUSCH (1820-1875).
The young couple lived with Marie’s parents in 1871 and with her widowed father in 1875. Census records indicate Marie was the only child of the MAJERUS-TRAUSCH couple. By 1880 Jean FRANTZ and his wife had their own household. Marie’s widowed father lived with them in 1880, 1885, and 1887. Jean and Marie continued to be enumerated as a family in Mamer in the census in 1890, 1895, and 1900. From 1858 to 1900 Jean’s occupation was a linen weaver. They lived in the “Brücke bis Weweschgâss” area of Mamer. At the time mostly farm land, today this is a residential area.
When Jean and Marie’s children married the occupation of the parents was consistently listed as farmers, Ackerer or Ackerleute, on the marriage records for the period 1892 to 1916.
When Jean died on 24 February 1929, in his 92nd year, his occupation was cultivateur or farmer in his obituary.
Jean was survived by his wife Mrs. Jean FRANTZ, née Marie MAJERUS; his children Mrs. Jos. FOURNELLE, née Cath. FRANTZ; Mrs. Paul GERSTEL, née Joséphine FRANTZ; Jean FRANTZ; Mrs. François VESQUE, née Pauline FRANTZ; Jean-Pierre FRANTZ; Mrs. Théophile HILBERT, née Marguerite FRANTZ; and Joseph FRANTZ.
His wife Marie died two years later, on 13 September 1931 in her 82nd year.
For Jean’s widow Marie, the same children were listed. Missing in both obituaries is the oldest daughter Marie FRANTZ who predeceased her parents. Suzanne MIETTE and Guy HOSTERT, listed after the children of Jean and Marie, were Marie FRANTZ’s children.
The FRANTZ Children
1. Marie FRANTZ 1871-bef. 1929
Marie FRANTZ was born 11 January 1871 in Mamer. She lived at home with her parents and siblings until about 1885 when she went to Metz, France, to work as a servant. In February 1887 she was still in Metz and by the next year, she took a position in Reims, France, where she was working in 1890. By 1895 she was no longer mentioned in her parents’ household on the census suggesting she married between 1891-1895. Her marriage to Eugène Léon MIETTE was found in the 2e Arrondissement of Paris. They were married on 21 June 1892 and divorced on 16 July 1906. They had a daughter Suzanne Léonide Jeanne Marie MIETTE born in 1895. After her divorce, Marie married Mr. (given names unknown) HOSTERT and had a son Guy HOSTERT who was photographed in Paris, France, at the time of his Communion in 1921. Marie died before 24 February 1929.
2. Catharine FRANTZ 1872-1934
Catharine FRANTZ, my great-grandmother, was born on 17 November 1872. She lived at home with her parents and siblings until about 1889 when she went to Arlon, Belgium, to work as a servant. Soon after December 1890, she began working in Reims, France, where she lived when the census was enumerated in December 1895. She was back home in Mamer on 9 July 1900 when she married Jean Joseph FOURNELLE, my great-grandfather. She went with her newlywed husband to live in Echternach where she raised three children. She died 16 March 1834 in Echternach.
3. Catharina Joséphine “Joséphine” FRANTZ 1874-aft. 1945
Catharina Joséphine FRANTZ was born 25 September 1874. She went by Joséphine. She lived at home with her parents and siblings until about 1893 when she went to work in Reims, France. She married Paul GERSTEL in 1900 and had two sons, Pierre and Jean. Her husband died before 24 February 1929. The family lived in Paris, France. Joséphine was living with her younger son Jean and his family on 1 January 1946. It is not known when she died.
4. Johann “Jean” FRANTZ 1876-1946
Johann FRANTZ was born 22 July 1876. He lived at home with her parents and siblings until about 1894 when he went to work in Reims, France. In December 1900 he had been in Esch-sur-Alzette for three months. A half a dozen years later he married Pauline VESQUE on 27 August 1906 in Contern. They had one daughter Daisy. Jean died 20 May 1946 in Dudelange. He was a retired postal worker decorated with the Order of the Oak Crown (l’Ordre Grand Ducal de la Couronne de Chêne). His wife Pauline died on 29 November 1956 in Hastière-Lavaux, Belgium.
5. Jean Pierre FRANTZ 1878-1879
Jean Pierre FRANTZ was born on 28 June 1878 and died 8 February 1879 at the home of his parents. He died at the age of 2/3 year per his death record.
6. Paulina “Pauline” FRANTZ 1880-1966
Paulina FRANTZ was born on 29 June 1880. In December 1880 when the census was enumerated she was listed as a son named Paul. She went by Pauline. She lived at home with her parents and siblings until about 1897 when she went to work in Reims, France. She may have lived with her sister Catharine and her family in Echternach around 1906 as she was included in a family portrait (seen above under #2). On 15 May 1910 Pauline married Johann Peter François “Franz” VESQUE. Franz worked for the railroad, Chemins de Fer Luxembourgeois. Pauline and Franz had one daughter Maisy who served time in prison for killing a man and never married. The family lived in Oetrange in the commune of Contern. Franz died 11 Feb 1964 in Oetrange and Pauline died 27 December 1966 in Luxembourg City. Their daughter Maisy died in April 1969.
7. Johann Peter FRANTZ 1882-1970
Johann Peter FRANTZ was born 14 October 1882. Johann Peter married Hélène KILL on 2 April 1913 in Mamer. They were the parents of three children: Jos, Paul, and Anna Maria. Their son Paul continued the family tradition of cycling. In 1936 he participated in the Olympic Games in Berlin, representing Luxembourg along with three other cyclists in the individual and team road race events. Johann Peter died 1 December 1970 in Luxembourg City. His widow Hélène died 12 October 1972, also in Luxembourg City.
8. Maria Margaretha “Marguerite” FRANTZ 1885-1977
Maria Margaretha FRANTZ was born 12 March 1885 in Mamer. She went by Marguerite. She married Johann Theophile “Théo” HILBERT on 25 October 1908 in Mamer. In 1915 their only daughter Margot Thea was born. Marguerite’s husband Théo was the driver of the car owned by Nicolas Frantz I (Tour de France winner) involved in two accidents in 1927, the first resulting in the death of a young boy and the second in the death of Nicolas Frantz II. Théo died 3 January 1946 in Mamer. His widow Marguerite died 22 March 1977 in Mamer.
9. Nicolas FRANTZ 1886-1886
Nicolas FRANTZ was born 16 April 1886. He lived only a month, dying on 18 May 1886 at his parents’ home in Mamer.
10. Johann-Joseph “Jos” FRANTZ 1888-1940
Johann-Joseph FRANTZ was born 4 September 1888. He married Marguerite BERWICK on 24 April 1916 in Mamer. They were the parents of two sons, Erny and Germain, born in Dudelange where the family lived. Johann-Joseph, also known as “Jos” was a teacher. He died 23 April 1940 in Dudelange. His widow Marguerite died seven months later on 28 November 1940.
New Lessons Learned
Without the photographs, newspaper clippings, thank you notes, funeral cards and other memorabilia saved by my maternal grandmother I would not have been able to tell their story in such detail.
Questions remain and may lead to new stories. I want to know more about Maisy VESQUE who served time in prison for killing a man. I’ve found newspaper articles about the deaths caused by Theo HILBERT when he was driving the car owned by Nicolas FRANTZ. A third question, I was able to answer and in doing so learned a new lesson.
I don’t know how many times I have asked myself who are “Mr Eugène Raymond, Mme, née Suzanne Miette et leur(s) enfant(s)” mentioned in Jean and Marie FRANTZ-MAJERUS’ obituaries? I knew Guy Hostert was the son of their deceased oldest daughter, Marie. Eugène or Suzanne had to be their grandchild and, since great-grandchildren were also mentioned, he or she had to have been born to one of the oldest daughters.
I don’t give up easily and the question took me to the online archives of the cities of Reims and Paris, France. Finding records in large cities is daunting. My persistence paid off. I found the records I needed to prove the relationship of Suzanne MIETTE and in doing so also learned how to use the Archives of Paris database.
If anyone is interested, feel free to leave a comment and I may write a post on how to use the Archives de Paris site.
This is my weekly entry for Amy Johnson Crow’s challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – 2015 Edition. It was so successful in 2014 that genealogists wanted to continue or join in on the fun in 2015. Be sure to check out the other great posts by visiting Amy’s blog No Story Too Small where she’ll be posting the weekly recap on Thurdays and allowing all participants to leave a link to their post(s) in the comments.