The last set of fourth great-grandparents who lived in what is now Germany were Mathias KERSCHT and Anna EWEN. Mathias’ surname was spelled differently in several family books (Familienbücher=FB). As KIRSTEN in the FB Meckel1; KIRST, KIERSCH, and KIERSTEN in the FB Messerich2; and as KERSCH and KIRSCH in the FB Mettendorf3. For Anna’s maiden name EWEN, no variations were found.
Mathias KERSCHT, the son of Peter KERSCHT and Eva SCHMIDS, was born on 28 March 1759 in Meckel, Eifel, Rheinland, Germany, and baptized the same day. His godparents were Matthias BERENS and Anna Maria SCHUL, both of Meckel. His godfather was likely a brother or relative of his mother Eva. Matthias BERENS went by his wife’s maiden name and was known as Matthias SCHMITZ before his marriage. Mathias KERSCHT had only one known sister Luzia who was two years older. It is not known if she married and had descendants.
Mathias married Anna EWEN, daughter of Gerhard EWEN and Barbara THIELEN, on 26 November 1785 in Messerich. Anna was born on 6 June 1766 in Messerich. She was the fourth of ten children.
Mathias worked as a sheepherder (Schäfer) in Messerich until about 1795 and then moved to Mettendorf where he continued to work in the same occupation.
Mathias and Anna had the following children.
1. Margaretha was born on 9 September 1786 in Messerich. She was baptized the same day. Her godparents were Peter KIRST of Meckel and Margaretha BAUER of Messerich. Was the godfather also the child’s grandfather? The FB Meckel in which Mathias’ father was found as Peter KIRSTEN does not include a date of death.
2. Anna was born on 4 October 1788 in Messerich and was baptized the same day. Her godfather was Theodore EWEN, single, from Messerich, likely her maternal uncle who was 27 years old at the time. Her godmother was likely her paternal grandmother Eva. The entry in the FB Messerich shows Evan KIERSTEN of Meckel. The godmother’s first name may be a typo in the book and the child was not given the name Eva or Evan but Anna. She married Heinrich LUDEWIG on 23 January 1809 in Mettendorf. They were the parents of eleven children. Anna died on 8 January 1843 in Mettendorf.
3. An unnamed child was born on 19 December 1790 in Messerich and died the same day.
4. Catharina was born on 14 December 1791 in Messerich and was baptized the same day. Her godparents were Jakob WEILER, a sheepherder (Schäfer) and Katharina LOCH of Spangdahlem. Catharina married Joannes Friedericus LOCHEMES on 19 September 1811 in Mettendorf. Joannes Friedericus was born about 1784 in Dahlem. From the time of their second child’s birth, her husband was given as Theodore LOCHEMES on all births thereafter. They were the parents of seven children. Catharina died on 9 December 1851 in Mettendorf. Her husband died on 16 January 1864 in Mettendorf.
5. Matthias was born on 19 April 1794 in Messerich and was baptized the same day. His godparents were Mathias SCHMITZ, a pig herder (Sauhirt) of KIRCHWEILER and Luzia BICHELER of Messerich. Matthias married Angela ACHEN on 21 January 1818 in Mettendorf. Angela was born on 11 December 1793 in Mettendorf. She died on 21 December 1870 in Mettendorf and Matthias died on 16 November 1876 in Mettendorf. They were the parents of seven children, two of whom died young. Their three youngest children went to America in the 1850s and settled in Wright County, Minnesota. Two were sons and their descendants spelled the surname KIRSCHT.
6. Anna Maria, my third great-grandmother, was born between 1795-1798 in Mettendorf. She is not included in the FB Messerich listing for her parents which suggests she must have been born after her brother Mathias. His birth in Messerich and her birth in Mettendorf places the relocation of the family from Messerich to Mettendorf during this time period. Anna Maria married Johann WAGNER, son of Matthias WAGNER and Maria Katharina HARTERT, on 22 February 1830 in Mettendorf. Johann, my third great-grandfather, was born on 19 June 1804 in Fließem and was baptized the same day. Johann worked as a shepherd. He died on 15 June 1858 in Mettendorf and was buried two days later. Anna Maria died on 21 July 1876 in Mettendorf.
7. Christoph was born on 19 June 1799 in Mettendorf. He married Elisabetha MERTES on 23 February 1824 in Sülm, also in the Eifel. Elisabetha was born in 1804 in Röhl. Christoph died on 30 September 1871 in Mettendorf. They were the parents of seven children, two of whom died young.
8. Anna Catharina was born about 1806 in Mettendorf. She died on 22 May 1824 in Mettendorf at the age of about 18 years and was buried the following day.
9. Heinrich was born on 8 August 1809 in Mettendorf and was baptized the same day. His godparents were Heinrich LUDEWIG, a sheepherder (Schäfer) of Mettendorf, and Margaretha ROCK, a servant (Magd) of Hisel. The godfather was his brother-in-law, newlywed husband of his second oldest sister Anna. He died 10 days later on 18 August 1809 in Mettendorf and was buried the following day.
10. Johann was born on 18 February 1811 in Mettendorf and was baptized the same day. His godparents were Johann WEYERS and Margaretha THEISEN, both of Mettendorf. Johann married Elisabeth ROTH on 7 January 1841 in Nusbaum. The family lived in Sinspelt, part of the Mettendorf parish. They were the parents of two known children, one of whom died young. No entry for his death was given in the FB Mettendorf which may mean he died after 1899.
The mother of these children, Anna EWEN died on 15 November 1828 in Mettendorf and was buried on the same day. Her widower Mathias KERSCHT died on 9 February 1841 in Mettendorf. He was buried on 11 February 1841 in Mettendorf.
As mentioned at the beginning, this is the last of my fourth great-grandparents who lived in the Eifel area of Germany. Next up will be the eight sets of fourth great-grandparents who lived in Rodange, Wiltz, Vianden, Echternach, Mamer, Capellen, and Strassen in Luxembourg. With only five weeks to the end of the year, it looks like I may not be able to get them done on schedule.
Last month Luxracines hosted the 12th National Day of Genealogy and Local History. Several versions of our members’ family trees were featured in an exhibit. This colored 9-generation fan chart of my family tree was printed out on DIN A0 paper (33.1 in × 46.8 in) for presentation. At the time of printing, I didn’t know who the parents of my 4th great-grandmother Maria Katharina SCHACMOTTE were. I used BRICK WALL as a placeholder for their names.
When I wrote about her son, my third great-grandfather Johann WAGNER, two years ago I knew when he married in 1830 that his mother’s maiden name was SCHAEMOTTE per the index of his marriage record. The FB Mettendorf listed his mother as Maria Katharina SCHACMOTTE with the surname variations: SCHAKEMUTTE and JAQUEMOT. All other information on Johann’s parents and siblings were at the time unknown. I wasn’t expecting to open the door in this brick wall anytime soon.
In preparation for this post, I used several family books of German towns (Familienbuch=FB) as seen below in the sources. I checked the FB Fließem for Johann WAGNER born about 1804 in Fließem to Matthias WAGNER and Maria Katharina SCHACMOTTE. Although the FB Mettendorf gives information on his life after marriage, only an estimated year of birth in Fließem was included. His parents’ names seen in the Mettendorf compilation were also found (with similar but not exact spelling) in the indexed German Marriages 1558-1929 on FamilySearch.
In the FB Fließem, I found a WAGNER family with a son named Johann born on 16 June 1804 in Fließem. The father’s name was Matthias and the mother’s name was Maria Katharina. However, the mother’s maiden name was HARTERT.
Could this be the right family? Johann’s mother was born during the time period when surnames would change depending on, for example, where they lived, i.e. house name. Could this be the case with Maria Katharina HARTERT?
I went back one generation to the entry for the parents of Maria Katharina HARTERT. The father was a HARTERT and the mother was a HEINZ. As I studied the information for the family group, I found they had only three daughters. One died at the age of four years. The other was three years older than Maria Katharina. This older sister Anna Maria married Adam SCHACKMOD in 1787. Is it possible Maria Katharina and her parents lived with the SCHACKMOD couple following the marriage and were then known by this variation of SCHACMOTTE?
Can I assume Matthias WAGNER and Maria Katharina HARTERT were the parents of my Johann WAGNER? If they aren’t, then I will be following the wrong paternal and maternal grandparents.
Family books are organized in alphabetical order by the husband’s surname. To make searching easier, the compilers of these books also include an index at the back for the maiden names found in the book. When I checked the FB Mettendorf‘s maiden names index I noticed two family numbers were given for Maria Katharina SCHACMOTTE:
M3013 for my Johann WAGNER’s family group
M3020 for a Peter WAGNER son of Math. Wagner and Maria Kath. Schakemut of Fließem.
The family group entry M3020 showed Peter was living and working as a Dienstknecht or servant in Mettendorf at the time he married a lady from Ferschweiler in 1837. Dim. (Dimissoriales) was written before the date of marriage indicating the nuptials were recorded in Mettendorf as he had permission to marry in Ferschweiler. No further information was given for the couple.
My next step was to check the FB Ferschweiler for an entry for the bride and her parents and/or an entry for this couple.
In the FB Ferschweiler, Peter WAGNER born 5 August 1806 in Fließem was listed as a servant (Knecht) and son of Matth. Wagner, Schäfer 30.12.1814 u. Maria-Kath. Hartert + 31.07.1823. There is a cross-reference to the entry in the FB Mettendorf. The compiler of the Ferschweiler family book had made the connection between Maria Katharina SCHAKEMUT and Maria Katharina HARTERT. He had probably gone through the same process of comparing the names, dates, and places to come to this conclusion.
As family books deal with only one location, a family may not be complete in one town book. Children born to a couple in a different town due to the occupational move of the father would not be included. As children married spouses from other towns the continuation of the line would end in the book. Compilers of family books today have a much better opportunity to cross-reference a family who lived in several locations during their lifetime as many more family books are available.
Johann Nicolaus WAGNER married Anna Maria KLEIWER on 23 April 1759 in Sefferweich. They were the parents of three children:
Matthias WAGNER was born on 21 January 1761 in Sefferweich
Gerhard WAGNER (1764- ) born 18 January 1764 in Sefferweich
Anna Maria WAGNER (1767- ) born 2 June 1767 in Sefferweich
The parents and siblings of Maria Katharina HARTERT
Johann HARTERT(1739-1803) married Elisabeth HEINZ ( -1794) on 12 May 1767 in Fließem. They were the parents of the following children all born in Fließem:
Anna Maria HARTERT (1767- ) born 3 July 1767
Maria Katharina HARTERT born 19 August 1770
Johanna HARTERT (1774-1778) born 28 May 1774. She died 12 July 1778.
The oldest daughter of Johann and Elisabeth, Anna Maria HARTERT married Adam SCHACKMOD on 20 December 1787 in Fleißem. This is the marriage which led to the possibility of this family group being my fourth great-grandmother Maria Katharina’s family.
Matthias and Maria Katharina Marry
Matthias WAGNER married Maria Katharina HARTERT on 4 January 1791 in Fließem. Matthias was twenty-nine years old and Maria Katharina was twenty.
By the end of the year, their first child Nikolaus was born two days before Christmas on 23 December 1791 in Fließem. He died less than two months later on 9 February 1792.
Maria Katharina’s mother Elisabeth HEINZ died 23 September 1794 in Fließem. She lived to see her two daughters marry and give her grandsons born within two months of each other in 1791. Sadly she lost one before her death and the other would die a year after her.
Matthias and Maria Katharina’s next two children were born about 1797 and 1799 and shared their parents’ names. Their son Matthias died on 8 April 1800 at the age of 3 years. Their daughter Maria Katharina died on 16 July 1803 at the age of 4 years.
The second child’s death was not the only one during that week. The maternal grandfather Johann HARTERT died on 13 July 1803.
The Napoleonic Wars had begun the previous May. Times must have been hard for Matthias and Maria Katharina who had lost three children and both of her parents. Matthias who was a sheepherder (Schäfer) in Fleißem shared the same occupation as his father who was from Gondorf. Were his parents still living? Had they moved away from Sefferweich?
Matthias and Maria Katharina had several more children. My third great-grandfather Johann was their fourth child but would grow up as the oldest of four boys. Johann was born on 16 June 1804, Peter on 8 August 1806, Calixtus Nikolaus on 16 April 1808, and Johann Friedrich on 26 May 1810.
Matthias WAGNER died on 30 December 1814 at the age of 53. Maria Katharina was left to raise her four sons between 4 and 10 years old.
Her youngest, Johann Friedrich died on 28 March 1818 at the age of nearly 8 years.
Maria Katharina HARTERT died on 31 July 1823. At the time of her death, her three living sons were not yet of age. Johann had turned 19 the previous month, Peter would turn 17 the following month, and Calixtus Nikolaus was 15.
Even though the youngest of the boys had an interesting and unusual name, I have not found further trace of him.
My third great-grandfather Johann was 25 years old when he married my third great-grandmother Anna Maria KERSCHT (est.1793-1876) on 22 February 1830 in Mettendorf. Anna Maria appears to have been older than Johann.
As I now know Johann’s brother Peter was living and working in Mettendorf in 1837, I wonder if Peter may have lived with his brother and been a witness to their marriage. The list of records to be obtained at the Archives in Bitburg is getting longer and longer.
Peter WAGNER married Elisabetha FASSBINDER (1801-1853) on 10 June 1837 in Ferschweiler. Peter was 30 years old at the time and his bride was 35. Their religious marriage took place two days later in Ferschweiler.
Peter’s wife Elisabetha died at the age of 51 years on 10 January 1853 in Ferschweiler. She had given him three daughters, two of whom were still living. The youngest of these two would die the following year. The FB Ferschweiler which covers up to the year 1899 does not include a date of death for Peter. Did he live into his nineties, passing away after 1899, or did he move to another town?
His brother Johann died at the age of 58 years, the same age as his father had been at the time of his death, on 15 June 1858 in Mettendorf.
There are still many questions which need to be answered concerning this family. However, I believe I am on the right track concerning this couple being Matthias WAGNER and Maria Katharina HARTERT aka SCHACMOTTE. Now all I need to have a new version of the fan chart printed out. But I think I’ll wait until I need it for a presentation. In the meantime, I hope to add a few more missing names to this 9-generation chart.
 Werner Naumann, compiler, Familienbuch der Pfarrei Mettendorf Dekanat Neuerburg, Band 1 A-M Band 2 N-Z (1992).
 Werner Naumann, compiler, Familienbuch der Pfarrei Kreuzerhöhung und St. Stephan – Fliessem – Mit allem Einzelgehöften und Mühlen 1662-1899, PDF (Trier 1998, version Aug 2011).
 Werner Naumann, compiler, Familienbuch Pfarrei Seffern 1663-1899 mit dem Gemeinden Heilenbach, Schleid, Seffern und Sefferweich sowie Balesfeld, Burbach, Feuerscheid Lasel, Nimhuscheid, Wawern (bis 1803) (Trier 1995/1996).
 Richard Schaffner, compiler, Familienbuch der Pfarrei Sancta Lucia Ferschweiler mit: Diesburgerhof (ab 1803) und L(a)eisenhof (ab1830) 1680-1899, PDF (Kordel, 1999).
My 4th great-grandfather Johann GROELINGER (1766-1840), son of Peter MERTSCHERT (c1737- 1768) and Susanna SCHNEIDER (1737-1778), was born in Holsthum on 8 May 1766. He was their fifth and last child. The family lived on the Schneider-Vogtei which had come into their “possession” through Johann’s mother Susanna’s family.
The historical background of the SCHNEIDER family and the Schneider-Vogtei were dealt with in the Prequel to The Groelinger-Mergen Family of Holsthum, Germany in order to make it easier for my readers to understand the confusion of the surnames used by Johann GROELINGER and his parents. To simplify it a bit more I created this mind map with Scapple.
Johann GROELINGER and Anna Maria Benedikta MERGEN
Johann married Anna Maria Benedikta MERGEN (1769-1829) on 24 March 1798 in Schankweiler. At the time Holsthum was part of the Schankweiler parish. In the marriage record, the father of the groom’s surname was given as GROELINGEN alias MERTSCHERT. His father had passed away in 1768 when Johann was 21 months old. His mother Susanna SCHNEIDER remarried within a month and her husband Johann BARTZEN became the holder of the Schneider-Vogtei.
Johann’s bride Anna Maria Benedikta MERGEN was born on 5 February 1769 in Holsthum. She was the daughter of Gertrud THELEN (1746-1818) and Theodor MERGEN (1746-1817). She was their oldest child. In the Schankweiler family book, her name is given only as Maria. She is referred to as Anna Maria Benedikta in several of the family books which have entries for her and her husband and/or for her children. [see sources 1-9 for the family books of Biersdorf, Edingen, Ernzen, Körperich, Mettendorf, Nusbaum, Schankweiler, Utscheid, and Wissmannsdorf]
Gertrud THELEN and Theodor MERGEN had married on 21 December 1767 in Holsthum. Theodor was a Rinderhirt or cowherd in Holsthum as was his father-in-law. Neither of Anna Maria Benedikta’s parents was found in the 1766 census.
Anna Maria Benedikta had at least three sisters: Anna Maria born in 1771, Anna Maria born in 1781, and Maria Katharina born in 1786. The repeated use of the name Anna Maria may mean one of them did not survive but as seen in other families there is the possibility of names being used for multiple living children. The Familienbuch Schankweiler does not give any further information on these girls. Church records, according to the compiler of the book, are missing for large periods of time. Perhaps when I visit the archives in Bitburg I may be able to pick up the trail of these siblings. For example, if they were godmothers of one or the other child born to Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta. Also, if they married, a husband may have been the informant on the deaths of the parents-in-law.
Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta named their first two sons after their fathers. Their first son was born on 10 January 1799 and named after Johann’s father Peter and their second son was born on 17 November 1800 and named after the maternal grandfather Theodor.
Johann’s brother who shared the same name died on 11 November 1801 at the age of 39 years. He likely never married.
The Napoleonic Wars had been underway five months when Johann and Anna Maria’s first daughter was born on 14 October 1803. Their next daughter Maria Catherina was born on 28 February 1805 followed by Susanna, named after the paternal grandmother, on 1 August 1807.
I find it unusual that neither of the first two daughters nor the three born after Susanna was named Gertrud after the maternal grandmother. Magdalena was born on 20 August 1809, Elisabeth on 17 April 1812, and Maria Katharina on 2 June 1814.
The Napoleonic Wars came to an end in 1815. Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta were still having children. Their son Wilhelm was born on 3 February 1817. His birth was followed three weeks later by the death of his maternal grandfather Theodor MERGEN on 24 February 1817. The widow Gertrud THELEN died a little over a year later on 2 April 1818. It is the death records of these two individuals which I hope may include the names of one or the other son-in-law who is at this time unknown.
Two more sons were born to Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta. Johann on 18 August 1818 and Gerhard on 2 May 1821. All of the children were born in Holsthum where Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta lived.
The first of these children to marry was the third child Maria. She married Ludwig GERMAN on 23 August 1827 in Schankweiler. Their first child, a son named Johann, was born a month later. The family moved from Holsthum to Ließem were at least two other children were born.
Anna Maria Benedikta MERGEN died on 6 February 1829 at the age of 60. Preparations for the marriage of her oldest son Peter may have been underway when she died. Peter married Margaretha PROST on 1 March 1829 in Biersdorf.
The second son Theodor married Margarethe WALLENBORN on 5 June 1831, also in Biersdorf. And the next marriage also took place in the same town when Maria Catherina married Johann Adam ERSFELD on 11 January 1832.
One last marriage took place before Johann GROELINGER passed away. Magdalena married Johann PHILIPP on 19 January 1839 in Schankweiler.
Johann GROELINGER died on 11 December 1840 in Biersdorf. As this record of death has not been viewed I can only assume he was visiting one of his children who had married in Biersdorf or he was living with one of them. Johann lived to the age of 74 years.
The first of his and Anna Maria Benedikta’s eleven children to die was Maria who had been the first to marry. She was living with her husband in Menningen at the time. She died on 30 March 1841. He remarried within two months.
Slowly but surely Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta’s children were setting up their own households.
Susanna married Johann JÜNGELS (1805-1862) on 23 October 1843 in Wißmannsdorf
Elisabeth married Mathias SCHMITZ (1810-1879) on 13 January 1845 in Altscheid
Johann married Catharina BURES on 5 January 1850 in Biersdorf
Gerhard married Helena Rosa LUDES on 25 October 1850 on Bickendorf.
Ten of the eleven children were married by 1850. Only son Wilhelm’s marital status is unknown at this time. A family with nearly a dozen children and all (except for Wilhelm whose fate is unknown) married and had children. No infant deaths. This may have something to do with the family coming from the Schneiders-Vogtei and possibly being more prosperous than families who came from manual and domestic laborers.
While up to nine different family books were used to trace the children, the family of the youngest son Gerhard was only traced through Thomas Pick’s Homepage for Eifel Birth and Marriage Data. The extracted information shows he married and had eight children in Bickendorf but does not include the names of the parents of Gerhard. The family book for the town of Bickendorf may be in our Luxracines archives in Walferdange. I was working my way back through the ancestors and had not gotten around to searching for descendants or checking for the Bickendorf book.
DNA Match with a 4C1R in America
Pick’s database shows the surname spelled GRELINGER which had me wondering if this Gerhard was the son of Johan GROELINGER and Anna Maria Benedikta MERGEN. I didn’t want to be following the wrong family.
After finding a descendant who is a DNA match to my brother on AncestryDNA with one of those shaky leaves which indicate a Shared Ancestor Hint, I am convinced the spelling of the GROELINGER name changed to GRELINGER for youngest son Gerhard when he married and moved to Bickendorf.
Gerhard’s son, a farmer, Johann GREHLINGER, born on 20 March 1858, single, requested permission to go to North America on 29 August 1881. He said his parents owned residential and economy buildings, and he had the necessary means to travel.
Records indicate this son who went to America in 1881 was Johann Michael GRELINGER. He bought a farm five miles outside of Beloit, Mitchell County, Kansas, in 1893 and married in 1894. The match my brother has is a descendant of this line and shares 25 cMs across 2 segments.
He had three siblings who also went to America. His oldest brother John arrived in 1871 and his second oldest brother Michael in 1876 per the 1900 and 1910 census when they were living together with their youngest sister Elizabeth who came in 1893. John and Michael both owned farms in Jewell County, Kansas, likely adjoining. The siblings, seen as GRELIER on the 1900 and 1910 census, were and would remain single.
DNA Match with a 5C in America
The GRELINGER cousin was found with a Shared Ancestor Hint. Since there were no other hints I searched for matches with the surname GROELINGER and GRELINGER in their trees. I found GROELINGER in this tree.
The surname GERMANN was a red flag as this was the surname seen in the first marriage to take place for one of the children of Johann and Anna Maria Benedikta. Their daughter Maria married Ludwig GERMAN in 1827. The owner of this tree has not made the connection to the parents. The match is a fifth cousin and shares 11.4 cMs across one segment.
Since the second match is considered a distant match, Ancestry does not show it as a shared match with the first test which is classified as a fourth cousin match. To compare the chromosome segments I need both of these matches to upload their raw DNA to Gedmatch. I sent messages this morning but they only went through after several attempts.
I would like to finally be able to add a maternal segment to the DNA map I am working on – it would be the first.
Sources:  Lika Hellwig, Ortsfamilienbuch 1 Biersdorf mit Hamm, Wiersdorf, Oberweiler, Nierderweiler, Beifels sowie zeitweise Echtershausen und Ließem 1714 bis 1899 (July 2002).  Bodo Bölkow and Richard Schaffner, Familienbuch 2 der Pfarrei St. Lambertus Edingen an der Sauer Daten bis 1798 aus den Kirchenbüchern der Pfarrei Echternach (damals für Minden und Menningen zuständig) mit Edingerberg, Minden u. Menningen 1680-1899 Edingen selbst ab 1705 (2000).  Richard Schaffner, 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 (2000).  Richard Schaffner, Familienbuch der Pfarrei St. Hubertus Körperich in der Südeifel mit Körperich, Niedersgegen, Obersgegen, Gentingen, Roth an der Our, Seimerich und Scheuerhof (später Neuscheuerhof) 1689-1899 (2002).  Werner Naumann, compiler, Familienbuch der Pfarrei Mettendorf Dekanat Neuerburg, Band 1 A-M Band 2 N-Z (1992).  Richard Schaffner, 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).  Werner Neumann, Familienbuch der ehemaligen Pfarrei Schankweiler mit dem Pfarrort Schankweiler und den Filialen Holsthum und Peffingen (Trier, 1990).  Werner Lichter, Familienbuch Utscheid (Outscheid) St. Peter 1728-1899 mit den Ortsteilen Buscht und Rußdorf (2009).  Irmgard Schmitz, Familienchronik der Pfarrei Wissmannsdorf mit ihren Filialen Brecht, Hermesdorf und Koosbüsch (2009).
 Josef Mergen (1954) and Heinz Weber (1995), Die Amerika-Auswanderung aus dem Kreis Bitburg im 19. Jahrhundert (2009).
What is the most interesting or unusual name in your family tree? Do you have one like PÖPPELREITER? It’s the maiden name of one of my two great-grandmothers named Catherine. For the three generations back to her great-grandfather (my fourth great-grandfather) Johann PÖPPELREITER, the name mostly remained the same. However, during his lifetime it was spelled several different ways, evolving from BUBELREITER to BOPPELREUTER to PEPPELREUTER to PÖPPELREITER.
Some people with this name emigrated from Mürlenbach, Germany, to America and the name lost the umlaut (the double dots over the vowel) and became POPPELREITER. The ones I have found were a father and son who came to America before 1860 and another family group who came in 1893. Further research is needed to prove their connection to my line which also comes out of Mürlenbach.
My fourth great-grandfather Johann PÖPPELREITER was the son of Peter BUBELREITER (abt. 1741-1793) and Gertrud LAMBERTI or BOSEN (abt. 1738?-1807). He was born and baptized on 15 February 1782 in Mürlenbach. The extracted information from his baptismal record does not include his mother’s maiden name. She was seen as LAMBERTI when Johann’s brother Mathias married. Later when she died her surname was given as BOSEN. His father Peter may have been married twice, Gertrud being his second wife. His surname was spelled with B’s instead of P’s.
Johann’s father Peter was a Köhler or charcoal maker. I believe this craft was passed down through the family as several PÖPPELREITER men during his time had the same occupation.
Charcoal burning is perhaps one of the oldest forms of forest use. The coal plates were roundish pinnacles with a diameter of 6 to 8 meters. During the construction of the kilns, split logs of one to two meters length were set up in several levels into a hemispherical structure and covered with branches, sod, and soil to make it as airtight as possible. After firing, it took two to three weeks for all of the wood to become coal. From a fathom of wood (about three cubic meters) 600 kg of coal could be produced. With the same calorific value, the charcoal was much lighter and smaller than the wood.
Johann married Margaret BOMMES
Johann was 31 years old, could not write, and was living auf der Glasshütte near Utscheid when he married Margaret BOMMES, daughter of Johann BOMMES and Anna Maria Luzia THIELEN, on 28 October 1813 in Utscheid. Margaret was born on 13 July 1791 in Grimbach and was baptized the same day in Neuerburg.
It is quite possible Johann learned the Köhler trade from his father and left Mürlenbach to work in Utscheid auf der Glashütte (glassworks) where charcoal was produced. Johann and Margaret’s first two children were born auf der Glashütte near Utscheid. Lucia PÖPPELREITER was born in 1813 and her brother Wilhelm was born in September 1814.
Sometime after the birth of their second child, the little family moved to Brimingen were their son Wilhelm died on 28 June 1815. Less than a month after his death Margaret gave birth to her next child, Nicolas on 23 July 1815 in Brimingen.
A year and two days later my third great-grandfather Theodore PÖPPELREITER was born on 25 July 1816 in Brimingen and was christened the same day in Baustert.
In the following two years, the family moved again to Mettendorf where their next four children were born. Catherine (the elder) was born on 27 December 1818, Barbara on 29 September 1821, and Matthias on 8 August 1824. Matthias lived only one day. The fourth child born in Mettendorf, and the baby of the family, was Catherine (the younger) who was born on 21 October 1825. The practice of giving the same name to more than one living child is confusing and the reason I distinguish between them with elder and younger.
Johann PÖPPELREITER died on 6 June 1827 in Mettendorf and was buried the following day. He was 45 years old. He left a wife and six children aged between less than two years and 14 years.
The oldest daughter Lucia died on 23 February 1837 in Mettendorf at the age of 24 years. She had not married. Nothing is known of the next oldest child and oldest son Nicolas who would have been 21 years by this time.
Theodore PÖPPELREITER, my 3rd great-grandfather, was the youngest son. He was working as a servant in Nusbaum when he married Maria Katharina GROELINGER, daughter of Johann GROELINGER and Anna Maria Benedikta MERGEN, on 20 January 1842 in Mettendorf. Maria Katharina was born on 2 June 1814 in Holsthum and was working as a servant in Mettendorf. She was my 3rd great-grandmother. Theodore and Maria Katharina’s story: The PÖPPELREITER-GROELINGER Family
Catherine PÖPPELREITER (the elder), now the oldest daughter of the widowed Margaret BOMMES, was 26 years old when she gave birth to a natural child, a son Theodore, born on 31 August 1844. For new readers, a natural child’s father’s name is not known or given. After his birth, Catherine married the widower Johann WAGNER (b. 1804) on 30 January 1847 in Baustert.
The youngest daughter also named Catherine married Nicolas BLEY, son of André “Andreas” BLEY and Hélène Charlotte MAY, on 13 July 1848 in Echternach. Nicolas was born on 17 November 1813 in Ettelbrück.
Following the marriages of Theodore and the two daughters named Catherine, Margaret BOMMES was likely left only with her daughter Barbara living at home as mention earlier, nothing is known of the oldest son Nicolas. On 19 January 1850 twenty-eight-year-old Barbara married Peter SCHNEIDER in Oberweis. Peter, a shoemaker, was born on 23 August 1814 and was seven years older than Barbara.
Johann WAGNER, the husband of the elder Catherine, died on 22 December 1856 in Mülbach (not to be confused with Mürlenbach). They had been married less than ten years. Catherine was left with four children, her son Theodore PÖPPELREITER and two sons and a daughter she had with Johann.
Margaret BOMMES, the widow of Johann PÖPPELREITER, died on 5 February 1860 in Mettendorf. She was 68 years old. She left a son and three daughters.
Following the death of her mother, the elder Catherine lost her two youngest children. Her daughter Anna Maria died at the age of 10 in 1862 and her son Peter died at the age of 11 in 1867. Six years later her son Nicholas WAGNER went to America and she was left only with her son Theodore PÖPPELREITER. He had married the previous year in Baustert and lived in Mülbach where she was living.
My third great-grandparents lived in Mettendorf all of their married life as far as I can tell. However, for some reason, my third great-grandmother Maria Katharina GROELINGER, the wife of my Theodore PÖPPELREITER (not Theodore, son of the elder Catherine), died on 27 January 1877 in Schankweiler.
Catherine PÖPPELREITER (the elder) died on 5 March 1883 in Mülbach. She was buried on 8 March 1883 in Mettendorf. Her son Theodore likely took care of the burial arrangements as her only other living son Nicholas was living in Aurora, Kane County, Illinois with his four children and wife who was expecting their fifth child in less than two months.
Barbara PÖPPELREITER died on 24 March 1886 in Oberweis. She and her deceased husband Peter SCHNEIDER who died on 1 May 1882 were the parents of three children. A daughter died at the age of 5 years. Nothing is known of Maria born in 1858 or Michael born in 1861.
Theodore PÖPPELREITER, my 3rd great-grandfather, died on 2 May 1891 in Mettendorf. He left two sons who are known to have continued the PÖPPELREITER line.
Nicolas BLEY, the husband of the younger Catherine, died on 27 October 1894 in the street called Mussgasse (above) in Echternach. The houses in this street are built against the old wall of the town as can be seen by the tower in the background.
Catherine PÖPPELREITER, the youngest and only living PÖPPELREITER child of Johann and Maria Katharina, died on 18 November 1908 in Echternach. She had given birth to ten children, five of whom died young. Two of her children married in the 1880s. Her oldest son André never married and was a professor at the Athénées Royaux (similar to middle and high school) of Arlon and of Ghent as well as the University of Ghent in Belgium. He died at the age of 87 in Ghent.
Catherine (the younger) would not be the only Pöppelreiter to live and die in Echternach. In July 1914 my great-grandparents Catherine PÖPPELREITER and Johann WILDINGER moved from Mettendorf to Echternach with their three children. Their story is Close to Home and Close to My Heart.
Please come back tomorrow for a little P.S.
Sources:  Germany Births and Baptisms, 1558-1898 / Deutschland Geburten und Taufen, 1558-1898, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 475030. Joannes Boppelreuter, male, christened 15 Feb 1782 in Mürlenbach, Rheinland, Preussen, Germany; father Peter Boppelreuter; mother Gertrudis. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NZMV-2L9 : accessed 27 OCtber 2017).  Germany Marriages, 1558-1929 / Deutschland, Heiraten, 1558-1929, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 546087. Mathiam Poppelreuter and Anna Maria Servatius married 10 Jun 1808 in Mürlenbach, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany; father of groom Petri Poppelreuter; mother of groom Gertrudis Lamberti; father of bride Mathiae Servatius; mother of bride Catharinae Linden. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4J4-VP8 : accessed 30 October 2017).  Germany Deaths and Burials, 1582-1958 / Deutschland Tote und Beerdigungen, 1582-1958, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 546087. Gertrudis Bosen Poppelreuter, female, age 69, widowed; died 25 Sep 1807 and buried 26 Sep 1807 in Mürlenbach, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany; Spouse’s Name Petri Poppelreuter.
(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J43D-8L4 : accessed 27 October 2017).  Heinrich Theodore Weber (+) / Thomas J. Schmitt, Familienbuch der katholischen Pfarrei St. Lucia in Mürlenbach 1803-1899 (Westdeutsche Gesellschaft für Familienkunde e.V., Bd. 177, Köln 2003), pg. 302, Family #1226. Poppelreiter-Lamberti.  M.E. Hubsch, Heribert Ambros, K.G. Oehms, Familienbuch der katholischen Pfarrei Sankt Nikolaus mit ihrem Filialen Neuerburg/Eifel 1700 bis 1899 (Westdeutsche Gesellschaft für Familienkunde e.V., Köln 2007), page 155, family number 271. Johann BOMMES and Anna Maria Luzia THIELEN, SCHOMERS.  Werner Naumann, comp., Familienbuch der Pfarrei Mettendorf Dekanat Neuerburg, Band 1 A-M Band 2 N-Z (compiled in 1992), p. 38, Family # M1958. Pöppelreiter-Bommes.  Werner Naumann, comp., Familienbuch der Pfarrei St. Maximin Baustert (bei Bitburg, Eifel) mit Brimingen, Feilsdorf, Hisel, Hütterscheid, Mülbach, Olsdorf, Family No. Br 830. Poppelreuter-Bommes.  Germany Births and Baptisms, Theodorus Poppelreuter, christened 25 Jul 1816, parents Joannis Poppelreuter and Margarethae Bommes; citing Roemisch-Katholische, Baustert, Rheinland, Prussia.(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NPNR-SZG : accessed 4 November 2015).  Ibid., Catharina Pepelerreuter, female, christened 28 Dec 1818 in Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany; father Joannis Pepelerreuter; mother Margarita Bommes. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NJ74-SHC : accessed 1 November 2017).  Germany Deaths and Burials, Joannes Peppelreuter, male, age 42, burial 7 Jun 1827, born abt 1785, married, spouse Margarita Bommes; citing v. 2 p.227. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-KL5 : accessed 27 October 2017).  Germany Marriages, Theodorus Poeppelreiter; spouse Maria Catharina Groelinger; md. 20 Jan 1842 in Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany; father Joannis Poeppelreiter; mother Margaretha Bommes; spouse’s father Joannis Groelinger; spouse’s mother Maria Mergen; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4LQ-4ZL : accessed 27 October 2017).  Werner Neumann, Familienbuch der ehemaligen Pfarrei Schankweiler mit dem Pfarrort Schankweiler und den Filialen Holsthum und Peffingen, p. 60, Family # H370. Groelinger-Mergen. Familienbuch Baustert, Family No. 1225. Wagner-Poppelreiter.  Luxembourg, Registres d’état civil, 1662-1941 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Echternach > Mariages 1809 > image 873 of 1462. 1848 Marriage Record No. 20. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11670-175616-83?cc=1709358 : accessed 4 November 2015).  Alois Schleder, comp., Familienbuch der Pfarrei St. Remegius Oberweis Dekanat Bitburg 1744-1899, 1999 (Westdeutsche Gesellschaft für Familienkunde e.V. (WGfF), Sitz Köln), pg. 132, Family #467. Schneider-Pöppelreiter.  Luxembourg Civil Records, Echternach > Naissances, mariages, décès 1894-1894 > image 17 of 23. 1894 Death Record No. 50. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-12050-133644-0?cc=1709358 : accessed 12 January 2015).  21. Luxembourg Civil Records, Echternach > Mariages 1906-1923 Décès 1895-1912 > image 584 of 675. 1908 Death Record No. 66. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1971-32043-12126-76?cc=1709358&wc=9RTB-6YZ:129623201,130153902 : accessed 12 January 2015).
Three entries in Richard Schaffner’s Familienbuch Körperich, at first glance, seem to be for three different men named Michael CLOOS, KLOS, or CLOS.
The information in entry #319 came from the Körperich church register book #2. CLOOS or KLOS Michael, son of Johann CLOOS and Anna KLAREN of Dauwelshausen, married Elisabeth THEWES or THIEWES, daughter of Nikolaus THEWES and Gertrud LESSEN from Ammeldingen, on 15 May 1770 in Körperich. At the time of the marriage, the bride was living in Seimerich.
In entry #1153 the marriage of Michael KLOS or CLOS and Elisabeth THIBES or THEVES is estimated at before 1771 (likely due to the birth records found for the couple’s children). Michael resided in Ammeldingen, Gentingen, and Eisenbach while Elisabeth resided in Gentingen. These are likely places referenced in the baptismal records of their children. They had three daughters between 1771 and 1776. The places of birth, dates of birth/baptism, and their godparents’ names and residence are listed. No entry is made for marriages of the daughters which means Mr. Schaffner did not find marriages in Körperich.
In entry #320 Michael CLOS of Eisenbach died on 20 December 1775 at the age of 28 years.
I believe all of the entries are for the same Michael CLOS (and other spelling variations). Although the book is the main source for this family it is not a primary source. To prove my assumption I will have to consult family books of towns in the immediate area for further information. The primary source, the church records mentioned in the Körperich family book, will have to be hunted down as well.
Click on the marker to open a description with information on when which person lived in these places. The farthest distance between two places is about 15 kilometers or less than 10 miles.
The Michel CLOS Story, This is How it Might Have Been
Michel was born about 1747. At the age of about 23 years, he married Elisabeth. They had two daughters within four years. Michel died shortly before Christmas 1775. Elisabeth was pregnant with their third child. Five months after his death, she gave birth to their third daughter. The only mention of Elisabeth after the birth of her third child is a reference to the grandparents of Susanna REIFFER being deceased at the time of her marriage on 31 January 1833. Elisabeth, Michel’s widow, therefore died before 1833.
There were no further entries in the Körperich FB for the daughters of Michel and Elisabeth. One of the daughters married in Mettendorf in 1790. A second daughter is known to have married before the birth of a child in 1803, however, the marriage record has not been located.
Michel and Elisabeth had the following children.
i. Margaretha was born on 29 November 1771 in Gentingen and baptized the same day in Körperich. Her godparents were Marg. Goebel of Gentingen and Nik. Thebes of Ammeldingen.Note: The godfather was likely the maternal grandfather of the child.
ii. Elisabetha was born and baptized on 9 March 1774 in Körperich. Her godparents were Elis. Klein from Körperich and Michael Windandy (sic, poss. a typo. A Michael Winandy was living in Körperich at the time). She died on 27 December 1829 in Bastendorf.Note: This child was my children’s ancestor, seeThe Sheep Herder’s Family
iii. Margaretha was born in Körperich and baptized on 24 May 1776 in Körperich. Her godparents were Marg. Clos from Eisenach and Nik. Wonner from Körperich.Note: How was Marg. Clos related to the child? Could she have been a paternal aunt? No date of birth was given in the entry.
Why were the first and third daughter given the same name? Did the first daughter die before 1776? What happened after the birth of the third daughter? Did Elisabeth marry again? Did she move to another area? Where did she raise her daughters?
In 1790 Margaretha, a daughter of Michael and Elisabeth, married in Mettendorf. Was the bride the older 19 years old Margaretha or was she the younger 16 years old Margaretha?
Daughter Margaretha Marries
Margaretha married Everardus WELTER on 14 September 1790 in Mettendorf., 
To learn more about the WELTER-KLOOS couple I need to consult the Mettendorf Family Book the next time I visit the Luxracines library. Will the entry for this couple lead to more information for the family of Michel CLOS and Elisabeth THEWES? Will the entry show their daughter Margaretha died before 2 January 1792 when a man named Everardus WELTER married Angela RENSON? Were there more than one person named Everardus WELTER living in Mettendorf at the time?
Janine Adams of the Organize Your Family History blog and members of her newly formed Facebook group, Genealogy Research Loggers, are helping me to create a habit of regularly entering my genealogy research into a research log. I’m using the Research Manager of my genealogy software Ancestral Quest 15. It is a powerful tool which I have not been using effectively. While entering items to the Research Manager, questions were formed (and recorded!) which I hope will help me to keep better track of the many loose ends in the family tree research.
Sources:  Richard Schaffner, comp., Familienbuch der Pfarrei St. Hubertus Körperich in der Südeifel mit Körperich, Niedersgegen, Obersgegen, Gentingen, Roth an der Our, Seimerich und Scheuerhof (später Neuscheuerhof) 1689-1899 (2002), p. 73 family #319.  Ibid., p. 247 family #1153.  Ibid, p. 73 family #320.  Luxembourg, Registres d’état civil, 1662-1941 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Diekirch > Naissances 1879-1890 Mariages 1796- 1842 > image 1312 of 1492. 1833 Marriage Record No. 9. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267- 11618-99298-93?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2N2:1627336735 : accessed 01 Apr 2013).  Luxembourg Civil Records, Bastendorf > Décès 1828-1862 > image 14 of 305. 1829 Death Record No. 19. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12394-256460-30?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2CM:n117549397 : accessed 04 Apr 2013).  Germany Marriages, 1558-1929 / Deutschland, Heiraten, 1558-1929, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 585,923. Everardus Welter and Margaretha Kloos, 14 Sep 1790; parents of the groom: Michaelis Kloos and Elisabethae Thewes; parents of the bride: Joachim Welter and Barbarae Roderig; citing Katholisch, Mettendorf, Rheinland, Prussia. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JHHG-35Q : accessed 8 January 2017). Ibid., FHL microfilm 585,922. Everhardus Welter and Margaretha Kloos, 10 Mar 1790; parents of the groom: Michaelis Kloos and Elisabethae Thewes; parents of the bride: Joachim Welter and Barbarae Roderig; citing Katholisch, Mettendorf, Rheinland, Prussia. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4PJ-7QC : 26 December 2014).
I was on duty a week ago Saturday at my genealogy society’s library in Walferdange, Luxembourg. This new library is open to the public on Saturday afternoons from 2 to 5. Three members of the board of Luxracines were present and six visitors dropped in to research and to become familiar with our collections.
As it was not yet too busy, I was able to get some research done while on duty.
I opened up my genealogy software (AQ14), went to my maternal grandfather’s pedigree and checked for the closest unknown sets of ancestors. One by one I pulled the family books of the towns they were from and looked up the families.
I used Evernote’s Scannable app on my iPhone to scan the images of the pages of the German family books concerning the families I was interested in.
I attached the names of 5 sets of NEW ancestors to my family tree, as placeholders. I did not input any further information.
To the Research Manager of AQ14, I added a To Do/Research Item for each placeholder person:
“Check the images from the [name of town] family book taken at Luxracines library on 29 Oct 2016“
I included a red tag for good measure.
At home, I sent the images to Evernote. Each image became a note which I titled with the town name, page number, family number(s), surname. The notes were filed in a temporary notebook.
The next step was to begin inputting the information, citing sources, and adding the cropped images to my database. I began with the Familienbuch der Pfarrei Messerich, Dekanat Bitburg, 1720-1900 compiled by Werner Naumann. It covers the towns of Messerich, Birtlingen, Niederstedem, and Oberstedem.
Last year I wrote 52 Ancestors: #45 The WAGNER-KERSCHT Family. My third great-grandmother Anna Maria KERSCHT, wife of Johann WAGNER, was the daughter of Mathias KERSCHT (1759-1841), a sheep herder, Schäfer, and Anna EVEN (1766-1828) who were married 26 November 1785 in Messerich in the Eifel. Anna Maria’s parents, my 4th great-grandparents, would be the next logical couple to write about. The Mettendorf FB entry M1158 for them indicated that they had not always lived in Mettendorf. Their first six children had only estimated years of birth indicating the information was not to be found in Mettendorf. Their seventh child, born in 1809, was documented as being born in Mettendorf.
My fourth great-grandmother’s name was seen as Anna EVEN in the Mettendorf FB (Family Book). Since Anna and Mathias married in Messerich this was the logical place to look further for this family line.
The first thing I noticed when I looked up EVEN, the name found in the Mettendorf FB, was that the name was spelled EWEN in the Messerich FB. I had suspected this may be the case as I had found Anna’s parents listed as Gerardus EWEN and Barbara THILIEN on Thomas A. Pick’s Homepage for Eifel Birth and Marriage Data. The data was transcribed from an unknown source and the town of Messerich is seen as Mefserich (clearly a transcription error). This made me question the correctness of Pick’s use of the names EWEN and THILIEN.
In the Messerich FB, Mr. Naumann included the book number, page number, and record number of the church records he viewed. He also mentions other spellings of names or name changes. Although records will have to be obtained as proof, I will, for now, go with the spelling found by Mr. Naumann.
The parents of Anna EWEN (1766-1828) were Gerhard EWEN and Barbara THIL, also seen as THIELEN. Anna had nine siblings born between 1761 and 1780. Not only did I find her parents but also her paternal grandparents, maternal grandfather, and both sets of paternal great-grandparents. The new names in the family tree are seen below in generations 8 and 9 in white.
When I finish all of the towns scanned, I will go into AQ14 and re-set the standard ancestral colors so that these new ancestors on my mother’s paternal line will also be pink.
An interesting name change was seen for Anna EWEN’s parents. Her father Remigius was born EUPERS. At the time of his marriage to Margaretha EWEN in 1733 he lost his surname as they lived in the EWEN home and their children were all baptized EWEN. He was known as Remigius EUPERS vulgo EWEN. Vulgo means “alias” or “also known as” and shows his association to the EWEN family and property.
The Mathias KERSCHT and Anna EWEN family group were included in the Messerich FB. However, there are still discrepancies. My Anna Maria KERSCHT is in the Mettendorf FB with birth being circa 1793. She had five siblings born between 1786 and 1794 in Messerich but she was not in the Messerich FB.
When I wrote 52 Ancestors: #45 The WAGNER-KERSCHT Family I discussed my doubts about Anna Maria being born abt. 1793 which would mean she was nearly 50 when her last child, my 2nd great-grandmother Magdalena WAGNER, was born. I didn’t have the WAGNER-KERSCHT family’s entry from the Mettendorf FB when I wrote the post a year ago. At the time the theme of the post was “nur nicht verzweifeln” or don’t despair due to all the missing information. I still don’t have the entry and have added it to the Research Manager as a To Do/Research Item for my next visit to the library.
The first documented mention of the town Messerich, Miezriche, was in the year 1066. In 1852 remains of Roman settlements were found thus proving that the place existed nearly one thousand years before it was first mentioned. In 1473 Messerich had 15 Feuerstellen, or houses which were lived in; in 1525 there were 12; in 1541 there were 14; and in 1624 there were only 5. The Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648), one of the deadliest conflicts in European history, and the Black Death, which repeatedly struck the Nimstal area in 1620-1633, were the cause for the decline in population. Today there are over 400 residents and 100 houses in Messerich.
On the map above Messerich is a bit south of Bitburg. The closest towns to Messerich are Masholder, Birtlingen, Oberstedem, and Bitburg. Echternach, Luxembourg, the town where I live, lies 17.5 km or 10 miles to the south.
Until the end of the 18th century, Messerich belonged to the Bitburg Provost District of the Duchy of Luxembourg. The borders of Luxembourg, before 1659, are seen above as black lines including areas of present-day France, Belgium, and Germany. The area where Messerich lies belonged to the Duchy of Luxembourg until the dark green area went to Prussia in 1815.
Although Messerich today lies in Germany, during the time my ancestors lived there it was part of the Duchy of Luxembourg. Now I am curious to find out which of my other “German” ancestors were actually Luxembourgers.
The entries from the Messerich FB have all been inputted and cited in my family tree. Schankweiler, Mettendorf, Neuerburg/Eifel, Mürlenbach, and Fliessem family books remain to be done. Hopefully I will have finished them by November 26th when it is once again my turn to be on library duty.
Week 45 (November 5-11) – Free. (Pick your own theme!)
I picked “nur nicht verzweifeln” or don’t despair: I had a rough time getting this written with correct source citations. I came to realize there are still avenues open to me for researching the German families. This is the last German family group in this generation. The next four sets of 3rd great-grandparents will take me back to the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Whew!
The WAGNER-KERSCHT family lived in Mettendorf, Germany, and included father Johann “Joannes” WAGNER, mother Anna Maria KERSCHT, and four children, two of whom were known to have continued the line.
Johann “Joannes” WAGNER
Johann “Joannes” WAGNER, my third great-grandfather, was born about 1804 in Fließem, north of Bitburg in the Eifel (Germany). He was the son of Mathias WAGNER and Anna Katharina SCHACMOTTE. The names of his parents were found on the indexed 1830 marriage record (no images). The 1858 burial record found in the FamilySearch database included his age at death which was used to compute his estimated year of birth. Thomas A. Pick, compiler, Homepage for Eifel Birth and Marriage Data lists Johann’s mother’s name as Maria Catharina SCHUMACHER. Johann’s parents and siblings are at this time a brick wall.
Anna Maria KERSCHT
My third great-grandmother Anna Maria KERSCHT was the daughter of Mathias KERSCHT (1759-1841), a sheep herder, Schäfer, and Anna EVEN (1766-1828) who were married 26 November 1785 in Messerich in the Eifel. Anna Maria was the second child of eight children born to Mathias and Anna according to information given in the OFB Mettendorf (Ortsfamilienbuch – Family Book Mettendorf). I suspect she was more likely their fifth child. Note: When I took the photo, below, it was the first time I was actually seeing a family book and did not know how to go from one family group to the next. I should have gone to families M1493, M3013, and M1535 to get more information on the daughters in the family. I did not miss getting a photo of the sons under M1160, M1161, S1162 as these were on the same and next page.
From information found in the sources cited below this is how I see the order of the births of the children of Mathias and Anna:
Child 1: Anne KERSCHT (1788-1843) born 4 October 1788 in Messerich., 
Child 2: Catharina KERSCHT (1791-1851) born 14 December 1791 in Messerich., 
Child 3: Matthias KERSCHT (1794-1876) born 19 April 1794 in Messerich., , 
Child 4: Christophorus KERSCHT (1799- ) born 19 June 1799 in Mettendorf., 
Child 5: Anna Maria KERSCHT born in Mettendorf. My line.
Child 6: Anna Catharina KERSCHT (1806-1824) born abt. 1806 in Mettendorf., 
Child 7: Heinrich “Henricus” KERSCHT (1809-1809) born 8 August 1809, he lived only 10 days dying on 18 August 1809 in Mettendorf and was buried the next day on 19 August 1809., 
Child 8: Joannes KERSCHT (1811- ) born 18 February 1811 in Mettendorf., 
You will notice the first three children born between 1788 and 1794 were born in Messerich per Pick’s Data. Anna Maria was born in Mettendorf. The family must have moved from Messerich to Mettendorf after the birth of son Mathias in 1794. Anna Maria’s year of birth is estimated at about 1793 in the OFB Mettendorf under the information for her parents. I did not get the M3013 entry for Anna Maria and her husband from the book and will have to rectify this as soon as it is possible to access the OFB. As you will see later her last child was born in 1842. She would have been nearly 50 years old if she was born abt. 1793 and 11 years older than her husband. I find this quite hard to believe.
When Mathias and Anna were expecting their seventh child their oldest daughter Anne married Henricus LUDWIG on 23 January 1809 in Mettendorf.
In the year their eighth child was born their second daughter Catharina married Joannes Friedericus LOCHEMES on 19 September 1811 in Mettendorf. Two months later she had a daughter, who lived only two weeks. Catharina also married Theodore LOCHEMES. This would have been in 1818 or earlier. What happened to her first husband and was he a brother of her second husband? These are questions I cannot answer at this time.
Six years after Catharina’s first marriage her brother Mathias, the oldest son of Mathias and Anna, married Angela ACHEN on 21 January 1818 in Mettendorf.
Another six years later the second oldest son Christophorus married Elisabetha MERTES on 23 February 1824 in Sülm near Bitburg.
Three months later their 18 years old daughter Anna Catharina died on 22 May 1824 in Mettendorf and was buried the next day.
Four years later the mother of this family, Anna EVEN died and was buried on 15 November 1828 in Mettendorf.
Johann and Anna Maria Marry
Johann “Joannes” WAGNER married Anna Maria KERSCHT on 22 February 1830 in Mettendorf. The bride’s father Mathias was very likely present at the marriage. As nothing is known of the groom’s parents, whether they were living or deceased, I cannot say they were present or not. At the time of the marriage the bride may have already been expecting her first child.
Let us consider what her age may have been at the time of marriage. If she was born about 1793 she would have been about 37 while her husband Johann was only about 26. Could there have been a 10 years difference in their ages?
On 20 August 1830 Anna Maria gave birth to her first child, a daughter Margaret. She was baptized the same day. On 12 February 1832 Margaret was about 18 months and became the sister of a brother Friedericus who was baptized the same day. The next child of Johann and Anna Maria was born a little more than 3 years later on 6 July 1835. This daughter, Catharina, was baptized the next day.
Six years later Anna Maria’s youngest brother Joannes KERSCHT (also spelled the surname KIRSCHT) married Elisabetha ROTH on 7 January 1841 in Nusbaum in the Eifel.
A little over a month after the marriage of her youngest brother, Anna Maria’s father Mathias KERSCHT died in Mettendorf on 11 February 1841.
Johann and Anna Maria’s fourth and last child Magdalena was born on 21 March 1842 and baptized the next day. If Anna Maria was born about 1793 she would have been about 49 years old when my great-great-grandmother Magdalena WAGNER was born. Could this be correct? I think a trip to the Standesamt Körperich, where the civil records for Mettendorf are held, may give me the answer to this question.
Anna Maria’s two oldest sisters died. Anne on 8 January 1843 and Catharina on 9 December 1851. Catharina’s burial record shows her age as 65 which calculates to her birth being abt. 1786. This is five years older than she actually was and shows the burial records index is not always reliable. Does this mean Anna Maria’s age at death on her burial record (below) may also have been incorrect?
Johann and Anna Maria’s only son Friedericus WAGNER married Catherine SCHMITZ on 9 March 1857 in Mettendorf. The young couple named their first child born on 17 May 1858 in Mettendorf, Joannes, after Friedericus’ father. Johann “Joannes” WAGNER, the grandfather, died less than a month later on 15 June 1858 and was buried on 17 June 1858 in Mettendorf.¨
Johann and Anna Maria’s youngest daughter, my 2nd great-grandmother, Magdalena WAGNER married my 2nd great-grandfather Mathias PÖPPELREITER (1843-1891) on 18 November 1868 in Mettendorf.
The oldest daughter Margaret WAGNER died on 19 July 1871 in Mettendorf. She never married and did not have any known children.
Johann and Anna Maria’s only son Friedericus was widowed between 1871-1873 and remarried on 11 January 1873 to Marie THELEN. She gave him three children in three years.
Friedericus’ second wife was pregnant with their third child when his mother Anna Maria KERSCHT died on 21 July 1876 in Mettendorf. Anna Maria left two children, Magdalena, my 2nd great-grandmother who died nearly eight years later on 20 March 1884 and Friedericus who died after 1899. It is not know if her daughter Catharina born in 1835 lived to marry.
Sources:  Germany Deaths and Burials, 1582-1958 / Deutschland Tote und Beerdigungen, 1582-1958, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-P8Q : accessed 5 November 2015), Joannes Wagner, birth 1804, burial 17 Jun 1858, spouse’s name Anna Maria Kirscht; citing v.3 p.264, reference v.3 p.264;.  Werner Naumann, compiler, Familienbuch der Pfarrei Mettendorf Dekanat Neuerburg, Band 1 A-M Band 2 N-Z (compiled in 1992), p. 291, Family # M1158. [Pages of book photographed in Archiv Peter Daus (Wittlich) on 4 May 2013]. Kerscht-Even.  Thomas A. Pick, compiler; Homepage for Eifel Birth and Marriage Data; (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~pick/ : accessed 5 November 2015) citing Messerich. Family Book Mettendorf, p. 291-292, Family # M1160. [Pages of book photographed in Archiv Peter Daus (Wittlich) on 4 May 2013]. Kerst-Achen  Ibid., p. 292, Family # M1161. [Pages of book photographed in Archiv Peter Daus (Wittlich) on 4 May 2013]. Kerscht-Mertes.  Germany Deaths and Burials, (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-KHW : accessed 5 November 2015), Anna Catharina, age 18, burial 23 May 1824, parents Mathias Kerst and Anna Even; citing v.2 p.210, reference v.2 p.210.  Ibid., (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-JLY : accessed 5 November 2015), Henricus, age 0, burial 19 Aug 1809, parents Mathias Kerscht and Anna Even; citing v.1 p.56, reference v.1 p.56.  Familienbuch Mettendorf, p. 292, Family # M1162. [Pages of book photographed in Archiv Peter Daus (Wittlich) on 4 May 2013]. Kerscht-Roth.  Germany Marriages, 1558-1929 / Deutschland, Heiraten, 1558-1929, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4LQ-SZ6 : accessed 8 November 2015), Henricus Ludewig and Anna Kerscht, 23 Jan 1809, parents of groom Nicolaus Ludewig and Elisabetha Thyves, parents of bride Mathias Kerscht and Anna Even; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Germany Marriages, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4LQ-SYW : accessed 6 November 2015), Joannes Fridericus Lochemes and Catharina Kerscht, 19 Sep 1811, parents of groom Leonardus Lochemes and Maria Elisabetha Mueller, parents of bride Mathias Kerscht and Anna Even; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Thomas A. Pick, compiler; Homepage for Eifel Birth and Marriage Data; (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~pick/ : accessed 5 November 2015) citing Mettendorf.  Germany Marriages, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4LQ-3LV : accessed 8 November 2015), Mathias Kerst and Angela Achen, 21 Jan 1818, parents of groom Mathias Kerst and Anna Even, parents of bride Michaelis Achen and Anna Maria Kaufmann; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Germany Marriages, FHL microfilm 556878. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4JW-JQW : accessed 8 November 2015), Christophorus Kirst and Elisabetha Mertes, 23 Feb 1824, parents of groom Mathiae Kirst and Annae Even, parents of bride Nicolai Mertes and Elisabethae Kruetten; citing Suelm, Rheinland, Preussen, Germany.  Germany Deaths and Burials, (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-KHW : accessed 5 November 2015), Anna Catharina, age 18, burial 23 May 1824, parents Mathias Kerst and Anna Even; citing v.2 p.210, reference v.2 p.210.  Ibid., (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-KT1 : accessed 5 November 2015), Anna Even, age 60, burial 15 Nov 1828, spouse Mathias Kirsch; citing v.2 p.234, reference v.2 p.234.  Germany Marriages, (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4LQ-7MQ : accessed 5 November 2015), Joannes Wagner and Anna Maria Kirsch, married 22 Feb 1830, parents of groom Mathias Wagner and Maria Catharina Schaemotte, parents of bride Mathias Kirsch and Anna Even; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Germany Births and Baptisms, 1558-1898 / Deutschland Geburten und Taufen, 1558-1898, (index), FamilySearch, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NC1K-YJH : accessed 5 November 2015), Margaretha Wagner, 20 Aug 1830, parents Joannis Wagner and Maria Kirscht; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Ibid., FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NC1K-BZQ : accessed 5 June 2015), Fridericus Wagner, 12 Feb 1832; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Ibid., FHL microfilm 469,172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NJ74-3X7 : accessed 5 June 2015), Catharina Wagner, 07 Jul 1835; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Germany Deaths and Burials, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-L6K : accessed 5 November 2015), Mathias Kerscht, age 88, burial 11 Feb 1841, spouse Anna Even; citing v.3 p.185, reference v.3 p.185.  Germany Births and Baptisms, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NC12-SQ1 : accessed 5 June 2015), Magdalena Wagner, 22 Mar 1842; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Germany Deaths and Burials, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-LL5 : accessed 5 November 2015), Anna Kerscht, age 54, burial 08 Jan 1843, spouse Henricus Ludwigh; citing v.3 p.197, reference v.3 p.197.  Ibid., FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-G5T : accessed 6 November 2015), Catharina Kirscht, age 65, 09 Dec 1851, spouse Theodorus Lochemes; citing v.3 p.244, reference v.3 p.244.  Germany Marriages, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4LQ-CVD : accessed 5 November 2015), Fridericus Wagner and Catharina Schmitt, 09 Mar 1857; citing Mettendorf, Rheinland, Preußen, Germany.  Germany Deaths and Burials, FHL microfilm 469172. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J4Z3-P8Q : accessed 5 November 2015), Joannes Wagner, birth 1804, burial 17 Jun 1858, spouse’s name Anna Maria Kirscht; citing v.3 p.264, reference v.3 p.264;. Familienbuch Mettendorf, p. 39, Family # M1962. [Pages of book photographed in Archiv Peter Daus (Wittlich) on 4 May 2013]. Pöppelreiter-Wagner.  Alwin Banz, compiler, Stammbaum: Familie Banz, password-protected site (http://www.genealogie-eifel.de : accessed 5 November 2015).
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.