Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What a Group Sheet Tells Me About My Grandpa

My dad's father was John Ludwig Margheim, born in Wakeeney, Trego County, Kansas March 15, 1900. He was born the youngest of 9 children of German parents who had immigrated from Russia to Kansas in December, 1886. I recently spent a three week period trying to keep working on my genealogy research without using my laptop computer. I printed out the group sheet showing my grandfather as the child in his family and I sat down to read it thoroughly. I love reading family group sheets! I enjoy interpreting the stories they tell.

My grandpa was a quiet man. A gentle, hard working man who grew up on farms in Kansas and worked at farming, carpentry, on the railroad, and as a school custodian in his later years. He had a very pleasant demeanor. I was fortunate to live with him and my grandma as a toddler and grew up only 10 miles from their home. We visited frequently and spent a lot of time together.

As I studied his parents' group sheet, I established this timeline that revealed many of the life experiences that surely defined him as a man.

At age 12, his father died.
At age 20, his mother died.
At age 20, he married my grandmother, Amalia Koleber.
At age 21, his first son Ernest was born (my dad).
At age 23, his second son Alfred was born.
At age 26, his older brother Alexander was killed in a car wreck.
At age 27, his older sister Lena died.
At age 29, his wife gave birth to twins, a boy and a girl.
At age 33, his son Alfred died at age 9.
At age 34, his brother Fred died as the result of what the family considered a murder, but what was ruled a suicide.
At age 46, his older brother Jacob died.
At age 50 his older sister Eva died.
At age 53, his older sister Mary died.
At age 62, his brother George died.
Grandpa Margheim died in 1978 at age 78.

My Grandpa's life was filled with family deaths and tragedy--they were frequent! Knowing that has made me more aware of the great strength of his character. Through all of that, he remained a strong Christian, a very pleasant, positive, loving and gentle man. He was not bitter, not resentful, and never exhibited any feelings of self-pity. I admire that. It was only after I studied these details on that group sheet that I was fully aware of the sorrows that Grandpa faced as he grew up. Oh the stories a Family Group Sheet can tell!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday: McMillan Cemetery

The McMillan family marker in the McMillan Cemetery. As shown on the sign below, the McMillan Cemetery was established in 1843 in Nunda Township, McHenry County, Illinois.
The headstone below is that of Jane Ann (Wilson) McMillan (1823-1904), my great, great grandmother.
The headstone below is for Samuel McMillan (1815-1884), my great, great grandfather.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday: Joe and Emma Becker

John Joseph "Joe" and Emma Cornelia Strait Becker are buried in the cemetery in my hometown, Great Bend Cemetery, Great Bend, Barton, Kansas. There isn't anything particularly unique about this headstone, except that it has been in view since 1944 and I've never seen it personally! I was born in Great Bend in 1947 and visited that cemetery annually as my parents decorated family graves with flowers. I have been to the neighboring plots of my grandparents Milo and Nannie Becker Flanders - Nannie being the daughter of Joe and Emma Becker, but don't recall ever looking down at their headstones while standing in that area. I was not raised with my mother, the daughter orf Milo and Nannie and granddaughter of Joe and Emma, so if I was at this gravesite, it was only briefly and for a quick visit with my mother. Not to attend to the graves of her ancestors.
Such a shame! I lived in Great Bend until I was 39 years old and in all those years, I never saw the headstone or gravesite of my great grnadparents. I also lived only a few blocks from the cemetery for 3 years! It's through the generosity of my mother's cousins that I now have this photo of their headstone.
Such a shame that we often aren't connected when we're young. Such a shame.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

On the Knee of my Uncle Albert

As I grew up I was especially fond of my uncle, Albert Flanders (1918-2002). This photo of me at age 2 on his knee is evidence that I was fond of him even as a toddler.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Happy Birthday, Grandma Margheim

Happy Birthday to my grandma, Mollie Koleber Margheim
Oct. 6, 1902 - June 6, 1986Posted by Picasa

Friday, October 2, 2009

Kings in White

Erma "Aldine" King (1914-1997)
and brother Robert P. King (1919-1987)
Franklin, Greene, Pennsylvania
Children of Samuel L. and Goldie Roberts King
Aldine and Robert are first cousins, once removed, of my husband, Larry Jamison.