My second great-grandmother Marie MAJERUS (1850-1931) is like a knothole in a fence. She was the only child of her parents Jean MAJERUS (1817-1887) and Maria TRAUSCH (1820-1875). On one side of the fence, she was the mother of ten children, eight of whom married and continued the line. On the other side of the fence, are her parents, grandparents, and other ancestors. Marie is a mitochondrial ancestress whose direct line goes back to my 6th great-grandmother Anna Catharina RONAS (b. abt. 1710).
When I re-visited my research this week for Marie’s paternal grandparents, Jean Baptiste MAJERUS (1797-1868) and Catharina CORNELY (1794-1871), I realized how much information was hidden behind the fence. She had many aunts and uncles and cousins.
Nearly all of my maternal fourth great-grandparents were born in the 1760s or 1770s. Jean Baptiste and Catharina were much younger being born in the 1790s. In turn, their children were born after civil records became required in Luxembourg. They lived long lives and were found on eleven censuses taken between 1843 and 1867.
Jean Baptiste MAJERUS
Jean Baptiste, son of Jean MAJERUS and Margretha BREGER, was born on 9 Germinal in the year V or 29 March 1797 in the Faubourg de Grund, a suburb located on the banks of the Alzette River in the valley below the center of Luxembourg City. In Luxembourgish, it is known as Gronn.
At the time of his birth, his parents were a legally married couple. The informants who accompanied the father to report the birth were Jean Baptiste BRETER, age 64 years, and Michel BRETER’s wife Anne Catherine GRASBERGER, age 36 years.
A marriage record for the couple has not yet been located. I suspect Jean Baptiste was their first child and the informants who accompanied the father were the child’s maternal grandfather and maternal uncle’s wife.
Jean and Margaretha had two more children born in the Gronn in 1799 and 1801 before moving their family to Strassen where their last known child was born in 1806. Jean MAJERUS was a draper in 1797, a wool spinner or fileur de laine in 1799 and 1801 as well as in 1823 and 1830 when two children married. He was no longer working by 1843 when the census was taken.
Catharina, daughter of Hubert CORNELY and Margaretha EVEN, was born on 24 April 1794 in Wickrange in the commune of Reckange-sur-Mess. She was baptized on 25 June 1794 in Reckange-sur-Mess. It is unusual, for this time period, for a baptism to take place two months after the birth. Normally the rite was performed the same or following day. Other baptismal entries on the same page of the register show delays. The priest may have had more than one parish under his jurisdiction and did not travel on a daily or weekly basis.
Catharina was the second youngest of nine known children. Her parents were married in 1779. When their first child was born on 17 June 1780 they chose a maternal uncle by marriage to be the godfather. Joannes ERPELDING of Kackerterhof, the husband of Catherine EVEN.
Kackerterhof was the ancestral home of my husband’s 5th great-grandparents Caspar ERPELDING (d. 1779) and Gertrudes JEHNEN (1724-1774). Joannes, the godfather mentioned above, was an older brother of my husband’s 4th great-grandfather Nicolas ERPELDING. When I worked on the ERPELDING line I wondered if the EVEN lady who married into the family could be related to my Margaretha EVEN. The marriage records of both EVEN ladies show their parents were Léonard EVEN and Marie IRY, my 6th great-grandparents.
Hubert CORNELY died on 29 August 1816 in Wickrange. Of his nine children, only his oldest son Jean and his two youngest daughters Catharina and Catherine have been researched. It is not known, at this time, if the six children born between 1782 and 1793 survived, married, or had lines which continue.
Jean Baptiste and Catharina’s Marry Young
My fourth great-grandparents, Catharina, 22 years old, and Jean Baptiste, 20 years old, were married on Friday, 25 April 1817. The bride and groom could not write but the father of the groom, Jean MAJERUS signed his name to the marriage record. The record officialized just in the nick of time as a month later their first child Jean, my third great-grandfather, was born on 24 May 1817 in Strassen.
The newlywed father Jean Baptiste complicated things a bit when he reported the birth of his first son. He may have been a bit nervous when he went to the city hall at four in the afternoon. The mother of the child on the birth record was seen as Maria CORNELY instead of Catharina – was it the father’s nervousness or an error made by the clerk? Jean Baptiste and Catharina’s son Jean was born at 11 o’clock in the morning. His father could not read and write and did not sign the record which was witnessed by two other persons who were present.
These were the children born to Catharina and Jean Baptiste:
Ch 1: Jean MAJERUS (1817-1887) born 24 May 1817
Ch 2: Mathias MAJERUS (1819-1895) born 29 Jan 1819
Ch 3: Jean MAJERUS (1821-1880) born 6 Aug 1821
Ch 4: Maria Catharina MAJERUS (1823-1823) born 27 Sep 1823. She died at the age of two months on 6 December 1823.
Ch 5: Jacques MAJERUS (1825-1900) born 12 Apr 1825
Ch 6: Jean Baptiste MAJERUS (1827-1893) born 8 Aug 1827
Ch 7: Marie MAJERUS (1830-?) born 12 May 1830
Ch 8: Peter MAJERUS (1832-1884) born 25 Dec 1832
Ch 9: Nicolas MAJERUS (1835-?) born 27 May 1835
Ch 10: Jean Pierre MAJERUS (1837- ) born 25 Sep 1837
Ch 11: Michel MAJERUS (1840-1906) born 14 Dec 1840
The maternal grandmother of the children, Margaretha EVEN died on 14 September 1839 in Wickrange before the youngest grandchild was born. Her death was reported by her oldest son who lived in the village. Her youngest daughter Catherine had married in 1824 and was raising a small family in Bertrange. Sadly, six of Catherine’s known eight children died infancy, unlike Catharina’s children who were strong and lived to adulthood. All except for one daughter who died at the age of two months.
A little over a half a dozen years later Catharina and Jean Baptiste’s nine sons and a daughter began to marry.
Ch 2: Mathias married Barbara SCHMIT (1819- ) on 6 May 1846 in Strassen.
Ch 1: Jean married Maria TRAUSCH (1820-1875) on 31 May 1849 in Mamer. They were my third great-grandparents and the only couple to not raise a family in Strassen.
Ch 3: Jean married Anna Maria HENGEN (1819-1881) on 24 Apr 1850 in Strassen.
Jean Baptiste’s parents died before the rest of the children married. His mother Margretha BREGER died on 1 April 1851 and his father Jean MAJERUS died on 5 July 1852, both in Strassen where they had lived since 1802. This census listing for 1847 shows they had been living in the commune for 45 years.
This census record, as well as the preceding and following ones, give Jean MAJERUS’s place of birth as France while the last he was seen on indicates he was born in Larochette (Felz). This same place was seen on his death record. Was he born in Boulay-Moselle in France (the only place I could find which sounded like Boulé seen on the 1846 and 1849 census) or in Larochette? Will this lead to his parents?
The children continued to marry:
Ch 7: Marie married Théodore JOST (1834- ) on 6 November 1855 in Strassen.
Ch 5: Jacques married Catharina GOFFINET (1826-1898) on 18 February 1857 in Luxembourg City.
Ch 8: Peter married Madelaine HOFFMANN (1827-1884) on 30 November 1857 in Strassen.
Ch 6: Jean Baptiste married Elisabeth HUBERT (1832- ) on 28 December 1858 in Strassen.
Ch 10: Jean Pierre married Anne KLEIN (1840- ) on 28 May 1862 in Strassen.
In 1865 Michel, the youngest of the children went to America. All of his living siblings [except perhaps Nicolas who has not been traced after the 1855 census] were now married and raising families. Birth records for 40 grandchildren of Jean Baptiste and Catharina were found – all except for one, my Maria MAJERUS, were born in Strassen. During some years there were between three to five MAJERUS grandchildren born within months of each other.
Due to the amount of time it took to look up, download, and correctly cite the birth records, I have not even begun to look for the death records of the spouses and children of the MAJERUS children of Jean Baptiste and Catharina. [Note: RootsWeb WorldConnect where I keep my GEDCOM is supposed to be back online within the next few weeks.]
Jean Baptiste MAJERUS died on 7 July 1868 in Strassen at the age of 71 years. His two youngest sons Peter and Jean Pierre were the informants on his death record.
Michel, the youngest of the bunch who had gone to America in 1865, married Mary MAUS about 1870 in Minnesota. Did he write to his mother, letting her know he was doing well, married, and living in St. Cloud, Stearns County, Minnesota?
Catharina CORNELY was 77 years old when she died on 10 June 1871 in Strassen. Her oldest and youngest sons who lived in Strassen, Jean and Jean Pierre were the informants for her death.
All of Jean Baptiste and Catharina’s children who married had children except for their youngest son Michel. He and his wife raised two of her MAUS nieces. Michel died in 1906 and his widow Mary died in 1923. She was a very religious woman who left bequeaths in her will for masses to be read for the soul of her husband, herself, and other poor souls. She also left bequeaths to a Catholic church, for an orphanage to be built ($5000), to a nephew who was studying for the priesthood, to the children of several of her deceased siblings as well as two godchildren. To her niece Mary A. MAJERUS (a MAUS niece she raised who took the MAJERUS name) she left $10,000, all real estate, and the residue and remainder of all property. Mary A. MAJERUS never married and died in 1960.
Until next week, when I will be writing about the last set of 4th great-grandparents, Michel TRAUSCH and Catharina HAMES of Mamer.
A decade before America declared its independence Maria Theresa of Austria implemented the first modern cadastre and census in a large part of the territories under the rule of the House of Habsburg, including the Netherlands which encompassed present-day Belgium and Luxembourg.
The 1766 census was grouped by villages and towns with each of these belonging to a paroisse or parish. Parishes were classified in a decanat or deanship (diocese). In a village or town, the names of all persons in a household were classified into four groups by age: men were listed as 16 or older and under 16 while women were seen as 14 or older and under 14 years. A column for occupations was only available for men 16 and older. On the last page of each village was a list of occupations of the inhabitants divided into several categories: public service jobs, merchants, laborers (including servants), craftsmen (masters and journeymen), and clergy.
ERPELDING of Kackerd
The ERPELDING family lived and worked on Kackerterhaff near the village of Oetrange in the parish of Oetrange in the decanat of Remich.
1766 Census for a place called Kackerd in the Paroisse of Oettringen (Parish of Oetrange)
Caspar Erpeldingen male over 16 yrs occupation laboureur or farmer
Jean Erpeldingen male over 16 yrs
Gertrude Erpeldingen female over 14 yrs
Jean Erpeldingen male under 16 yrs
Nicolas Erpeldingen male under 16 yrs
Barbe Erpeldingen female under 14 yrs
Maria Erpeldingen female under 14 yrs
1 married couple in household
CONRADT of Uebersyren
The CONRADT family (written CONRADE on the sheet) lived in Uebersyren in the parish of Hostert not far from the parish of Oetrange.
1766 Census for the Village of Ubersyren in the Paroisse of Hostert
Pierre Conrade 16 yrs or older occupation tisserand or weaver
Ann Catherine Conrad 16 yrs or older
no males under 16 yrs
Elizabeth Conrad female under 14 yrs
Madlene Conrad female under 14 yrs
Marie Conrad female under 14 yrs
Catherine Conrad female under 14 yrs
1 married couple in household
Twenty-two years later…
Nicolas ERPELDING, 22 years old, married Madelaine “Magdalena” CONRADT, 29 years old, on 7 July 1788 in Schuttrange. Nicolas, the youngest son of Caspar ERPELDING (d. 1779) and Gertrude JEHNEN (d. 1774), was born 7 November 1765 in Villa Kackert near Oetrange. Magdalena, the second oldest daughter of Peter CONRADT (d. 1789) and Anna Catharina ROEDER (1736-1791), was born 2 June 1759 in Uebersyren.
The young couple made their home in Uebersyren during the first years of their marriage and this is where their first child Mathias was born on 27 March 1791.
Following the birth of Matthias and before their next child was born they left Uebersyren and made their home auf dem Kackert, in the home Nicolas had been born and raised in. The move may have followed the death of Magdalena’s mother in Uebersyren six months after the birth of Mathias.
When daughter Catharina was born on 15 October 1793, Nicolas and Magdalena were seen as a legally married couple and operariorum commorantuim in Kackert – workers residing at Kackert. Nicolas’ parents had died in 1774 and 1779 and the farm likely went to their oldest son Jean ERPELDING. Catharina’s baptismal record lists Jean as her godfather and agricola habitans in Villa Kackert – a farmer who lives on the Kackert farm. Villa in Latin has several definitions including villa or country house, village, farm, or premises. As later documents refer to Kackerterhaff, and it is still known as such, the translation would be a farm.
At this point in the family timeline, there is a discrepancy which I have not been able to resolve. From marriage records found, it appears that there were two daughters named Catharina. No baptismal record has been found for the second daughter named Catharina. Her marriage record is a religious marriage record which names her parents but does not include her date of birth. No civil marriage record, which normally includes the date and place of birth, has been found. All birth records of her children and her death record place her birth at about 1793, the same as the first daughter named Catharina. Due to records found, they cannot be the same person.
Nicolas and Magdalena’s fourth child Margaretha was born and baptized on 15 December 1795. Her parents were seen as operariorum in Kackert – operators of Kackert.
Pierre, the next child, was born on 15 January 1797 and the entry in the parish records was the first for the new year. No godparents were listed. The parents were seen as a legally married couple living in Kackert.
The second daughter named Margaretha was baptized on 16 November 1800 and born on 1 January 1801. That is not a typo. The records show she was baptized six weeks before her birth! While the church records continued to be kept using the Gregorian calendar, the civil records at the time used the French Republican calendar. A difference of a day or two could be explained but six weeks cannot be an error in calculation. The discrepancy in the church record vis-a-vis the civil record was brought to my attention by Cyndi Speltz Gipp 14 years ago. Cyndi is my husband’s 7th cousin through Gertrude JEHNEN’s parents.
The last child of Nicolas and Magdalena was Barbara born on 25 February 1804. As with all of her siblings, except for her oldest brother Mathias, she was born on the Kackert farm.
The Middle Years
All of the children Magdalena gave birth to survived to adulthood. The seven children remained on Kackerterhaff until they began to marry.
In the meantime, Nicolas’ brother Jean ERPELDING (his second brother named Jean) died on 20 May 1806 on Kréintgeshaff, a farm near Kackerterhaff. His place of death has helped to differentiate between the two brothers named Jean.
On 15 December 1814, the first of Nicolas and Magdalena’s children married. Catharina married Nicolas GLODT (1793-1858) on 15 December 1814 in Oetrange.
Madelaine “Magdalena” CONRADT did not live long enough to see any of her other children marry. She died on 28 January 1818 on Kackerterhaff.
Six years later the oldest son of the ERPELDING-CONRADT couple, Mathias, married Margaritha GROSS (1796-1872) on 25 February 1824 in Oetrange. Mathias, being the oldest, remained on the farm.
A little more than a year later, the younger son Pierre married Margaretha KRUCHTEN (1797-1859) on 21 March 1825 in Contern. They would make their home in Oetrange in the commune of Contern.
Four years later Nicolas ERPELDING died on 10 May 1829 at Kackerterhaff. He left two married sons, a married daughter, and four unmarried daughters. His youngest daughter Barbara was 25 years old and expecting a child. The male child was born and died on 28 December 1829. No father was listed on the birth record.
The oldest daughter Catharina married Johann BOUR (1772-1855) on 26 February 1831 in Bertrange. She was 37 years old and he was 58 and had been a widower for two years. Catharina was living on Kackerterhaff up until the time of the marriage. It would be interesting to learn how she met her husband as two of her three sisters would also marry in Bertrange and live in Strassen, at that time part of the commune of Bertrange. What brought these women to Strassen and Bertrange which both lie on the other side of Luxembourg City from Kackerterhaff?
Nicolas ERPELDING’s oldest brother Jean died before 1833 as his widow Catharina EVEN’s death was declared by her nephew Mathias ERPELDING on 13 December 1833. She died on Kackerterhaff. To date, no children have been found for this couple which may be the reason the farm was now seen in the hands of Mathias.
The younger Margaretha, my children’s ancestress, married François “Franz” MERTES (1806-1864) on 25 February 1834 in Bertrange. Both of her brothers, Mathias and Pierre, were present and signed as witnesses to her marriage.
Five years later, the older Margaretha who was still living on the home farm married Johann SCHMIT (1780-1856) on 10 April 1839 in Bertrange. Margaretha was 44 and Johann, widowed only four months earlier, was 58 years old. None of the witnesses were relatives of the bride, however, Michel BRIMEYER, one of the witnesses, was listed as her acquaintance.
Finally, on 11 February 1846, the youngest child of Nicolas and Magdalena married. Barbara married Peter ENTRINGER (1801-1867) on 11 February 1846 in Sandweiler. Barbara’s son Mathias ERPELDING, born illegitimately on 29 May 1835, was 10 years old. The marriage legitimized his birth as Peter ENTRINGER recognized him as his son. Between the time of Mathias’ birth and the marriage, the groom had been married to another woman and widowed.
The Later Years
Catharina ERPELDING who married Nicolas GLODT died on 6 January 1848 at the age of 55 in Oetrange. She had given birth to at least eight children.
Margaretha ERPELDING who married Johann SCHMIT was widowed on 29 December 1856. It is unknown when or where she died. She remained childless.
Catharina ERPELDING who married Johann BOUR was last seen in the census in December 1861 in Strassen. She was widowed in 1855 and also remained childless. No death record has been found.
Pierre ERPELDING died on 23 December 1865 in Oetrange. He outlived his wife, who had given him seven children, by six years. Two of these children died as infants. His oldest son Theodore, after being widowed twice, would emigrate to America in 1884 with his sons John and Nicholas and his daughter Angelique to join his older son Peter who had emigrated the previous year. The line would continue in Nebraska.
The youngest daughter Barbara ERPELDING was widowed on 10 Sep 1867. She was not found between the time of her marriage in 1846 and her husband’s death in 1867. It is unknown if they had other children and what happened to the son Mathias who was legitimized at the time of the marriage.
My children’s 4th great-grandmother Margaretha ERPELDING died on 1 November 1868 in Strassen. Widowed in 1864, she left only one child, a son Michel who fathered thirteen children.
Following Margaretha’s death, the only known living child of Nicolas and Magdalena was their oldest son Mathias ERPELDING. He died on 31 December 1871 on Kackerterhaff. His wife followed him four months later. They were the parents of eight children. Sons Peter and Mathias never married but worked the farm until their deaths on Kackerterhaff in 1897 and 1916. They are the last known ERPELDINGs to have lived on the home place.
Although I have spent the past two weeks attaching (and citing sources for) birth, marriage, census, and death records to all individuals in this family (several generations), the largest part of the research was done by my husband’s 7th cousin Cyndi. She ordered the FamilySearch microfilms and viewed them at her local Family History Center fourteen years ago. Not only did she research her line down from Gertrude JEHNEN’s parents Christophori “Stofel” JEHNEN and Maria SCHINGEN but also this ERPELDING family and shared all with me. In 2015 I got in touch with her again when I wrote 52 Ancestors: #40 Happy Birthday to Michel of the MERTES-ERPELDING Family and now we keep up via Facebook. Thank you, Cyndi, for all the work you’ve done on this branch of the family.
P.S. Kackerterhaff is Luxembourgish for the German Kackerterhof. So for those of you who noticed, I made the featured image first. While writing the post I decided to be consistent by using Kackerterhaff throughout and forgot I’d used the German version in the image.
Week 40 (October 1-7) – October:What ancestor has a birthday or anniversary in October?
François, the Groom
François “Franz” MERTES (1806-1864) was the son of Nicolas MERTES and Marie Catherine DONNEN (1783-1854). Franz’s parents were married on 21 February 1803 in Bertrange (Bartringen). François, the name given to him at birth, is believed to have been their first born child. He was born at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday 5 April 1806 in Bertrange. On Sunday morning at 7:00 a.m. when Nicolas reported his son’s birth another father, Martin JUNG was at the city hall to report his daughter’s birth. Martin JUNG witnessed Nicolas’ son’s birth record and Nicolas witnessed JUNG’s daughter’s birth record. Both men did not know how to write and signed with an X.
François had the following known siblings: Anne 1808, Catherine 1811, Nicolas 1814, Joannes 1817, and Nicolas 1821. Their marriages and children have not been researched.
While doing François’ census work I saved the links in Evernote of all pages with the MERTES name from 1843 through 1855. “Census work” for families in Luxembourg during this time period means viewing every image in the batches at FamilySearch as they are browse only and don’t have a list or index similar to the later census years. It is very time consuming but usually helpful when developing a timeline for the family.
François marries Margaretha ERPELDING
In the year eighteen hundred thirty-four, the twenty-fifth of the month of February at 9 o’clock in the morning, there came before us, the mayor, civil officer of the commune of Bertrange in the province of Luxembourg, François MERTES, single, age twenty-seven years, born in Bertrange in this commune on the fifth day of April eighteen hundred sixteen (sic, 1806), a civil day laborer, resident of Bertrange, adult son of Nicolas MERTES and Marie Catherine DONNEN who are both present, consulting to this marriage.
and the demoiselle Marguerithe ERPELDING age thirty-three years born on the Kackerter farm in Oetrange in the commune of Contern on the eleventh day of the month of Nivôse in the ninth year of the French Republic, corresponding to the first of January eighteen hundred and one, without an occupation, resident of Kackerter farm, adult daughter of Nicolas ERPELDING and Madelaine KUNERATH who died at the named Kackerter farm, the mother on the twenty-eighth January eighteen hundred eighteen and the father on the ten May eighteen hundred twenty-nine, during their lifetimes civil day laborers.
Who requested that we procede in the celebration of this marriage planned between them, and banns were published in Contern on Sundays the second and ninth of the month of February and in Bertrange on the ninth and sixteenth of the same month.
No opposition to the marriage was given us,granting them the right of their request, after readingallabove mentioned, as well asthe titleof ChapterSixof the CivilCode entitledthe Marriage,we asked thefuture husbandand the futurewife if they want totake each other to be husbandandwife; eachresponding separately andaffirmatively, we declare, on behalf of the law,that François MERTES and Marguerithe ERPELDING are united by marriage.
All of this took place inthe presence of witnessesnamedbelow, namely Mathias Erpelding, age forty years, farmer, resident of the said Kackerter farm, brother of the future bride Pierre Erpelding, age thirty-five years, residing abroad, weaver, brother of the future bride Jean Reichling, age twenty-five years, farmer, resident of Bertrange, acting as a friend of the future groom And Nicolas Goergen, age twenty-five years, farmer, resident of Bertrange, acting as a friend of the future groom
Who after it was read to them,signedwith us, with the exception of the groom, the bride, and the mother and father of the groom who declared not knowing how to sign.
Margaretha, the Bride
Margaretha, seen above as Marguerithe, was born 10 Nivôse year IX (1 January 1801) on Kackerterhoff (Kackerterhaff) in Oetrange in the commune of Contern to Nicolas ERPELDING (1765-1829) and Madelaine “Magdalena” KUNERATH (1759-1818). Her date of birth was recorded in the civil records using the French Republican Calendar. Church records were kept using the Gregorian or Christian calendar and her baptismal record shows she was baptized on 16 November 1800 – six weeks before her birth! Civil records are the legal records used in Luxembourg. I am not sure how this discrepancy in the church records came about but it was brought to my attention by Cyndi Speltz Gipp.
A dozen years ago Cyndi, my husband’s 7th cousin, got in touch with me about her JEHNEN line. She spent hours at her local Family History Center viewing microfilms she ordered for her research of the JEHNEN descendants, including Nicolas ERPELDING whose mother was a JEHNEN. Cyndi found 5 siblings for Margaretha: Mathias 1791, Catharina 1793, Margaretha 1795, Petrus 1797 and Barbara 1804.
François and Margaretha’s Little Family
Ten months after their marriage, at 6 o’clock in the evening of Christmas Eve, François and Margaretha welcomed their first child into the family. François reported the birth of his daughter Marie Catherine MERTES on Christmas Day 1834 in Bartringen. As was the case at the time of his marriage, he was not able to sign the record.
Their second child and only son, Michel MERTES was born on 6 October 1837 at 4 o’clock in the afternoon in the commune of Bertrange. His father reported the birth two hours later. The place of birth is not specifically stated. Later when Michel married in 1861 his place of birth on his marriage record was Bertrange but when he married a second time in 1874 his place of birth on the marriage record was Strassen.
Happy Birthday Michel MERTES
Tomorrow is the 178th anniversary of the birth of Michel, François and Margaretha’s only son, and only child to live to adulthood and marry.
Census Records Help to Fill in the Timeline
Census records were found for the little family. On 23 December 1843 they were living next door to François’ parents in Bertrange. Following this census, the only one with the entire family listed, Marie Catherine died at the age of eleven years on 6 July 1846 in Strassen.
The family of three, father, mother and son Michel, was seen in Strassen for the censuses taken on 20 December 1846, 31 December 1847, 7 December 1849, 31 December 1851, and 6 December 1852.
François’ parents were still living in Bartringen when his mother Marie Catherine DONNEN died on 24 January 1854 and his father Nicolas MERTES died on 19 October 1855.
The MERTES-ERPELDING family was seen in Strassen on 3 December 1855 and 3 December 1858 when the census was enumerated.
Their only living child Michel MERTES married(1) Catharina HEIN (1834-1874) on 10 January 1861 in Strassen. When the census was taken in December 1861 Michel and his wife were living with his parents.
François and Margaretha’s first granddaughter Maria lived only 5 days, born 1 February and died 6 February 1862 in Strassen. Their second granddaugher Margaretha was born in 1863 about a year before François “Franz” MERTES died on 15 March 1864 in Strassen.
Margaretha ERPELDING was seen as the head of household on 3 December 1864. Her son Michel, daughter-in-law Catharina, and granddaughter Margaretha were in her household. On 3 December 1867 Michel MERTES was the head of household in Strassen. His mother Margaretha was in his household and died less than a year later in Strassen on 1 November 1868.
Michel MERTES, widowed with three children in February 1874, married Margaretha RUCKERT (1847-1895) on 22 April 1874 in Strassen. Their story can be read here.
New Connections Found in the Census
While researching this small family I found two ladies with the maiden name ERPELDING and Oetrange as their place of birth in the Bertrange and Strassen census. They were both married to older men and did not have children. Their marriage records were found and proved they were sisters of Margaretha:
Catharina ERPELDING (b. 15 Oct 1793) married Jean BOUR (b. 1772) on 26 February 1831 in Bertrange
Margaretha ERPELDING (b. 15 Dec 1795) married Jean SCHMIT (b. 1780) on 10 April 1839 in Bertrange.
These marriages were unknown to Cyndi who concentrated her search in the Oetrange, Contern area. Finding these records however brings up new questions. The birth dates above were found in the marriage records and match dates of birth found by Cyndi. Unfortunately not only were there two sisters named Margaretha, there was a second sister named Catharina b. abt. 1793 who married in 1814 and died in 1848. Both Cyndi and I have her listed with the birth date 15 October 1793. But which of the two Catharina’s was born on this date? I’ll have to add this research question and all it entails to my to-do list.
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.