Hunting the Ernst Line: Part 3 – The Collateral Lines

John Albert Ernst was born in 1856 in , , Illinois and died Friday, 14 October 1932 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa at 75-76 years of age and was buried Monday, 17 October 1932 in Logan Park Cemetery, Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa in Section 2, Plot 90 (Find A Grave Memorial No. 8784614). On Saturday, 02 July 1881 in Independence, Buchanan, Iowa he married Minnie J. Lee who was born about 1864 in , , Illinois and died Tuesday, 15 February 1916 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa at 52 years, 3 months, 26 days of age and was buried Friday, 18 February 1916 in Logan Park Cemetery, Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa in Section 2, Plot 90 (Find A Grave Memorial No. 8784615), she was the daughter of William Lee and Hannah Airs/Ayres. John Albert and Minnie J. were the parents of seven children.

Willard/William M. Ernst who was born in 1884 in , , Iowa. He appears on the 1885 Iowa State Census with his parents at age 1 year, on the 1895 Iowa State Census at 11 years of age, on the 1900 United States Census at 16 with his parents, the 1905 Iowa State Census at 21, 1910 U.S. Census at 26 as head of household with his parents and three younger brothers, but then disappears and nothing further has been found to date.

Norris Ferdinand Ernst who was born Wednesday, 18 February 1885 in Barclay, Black Hawk, Iowa and died Sunday, 30 July 1944 at 59 years, 5 months, 12 days of age and was buried Wednesday, 02 August 1944 in Logan Park Cemetery same section and plot as his parents (Find A Grave Memorial No. 8784616). He is described on his World War I Draft Registration as of medium height, medium build, gray eyes and brown hair, working as a farmer in Hinton, Plymouth, Iowa. There is no information regarding marriage or issue.

An unnamed daughter born Sunday, 15 August 1886 in Barclay, Black Hawk, Iowa. She does not appear on the 1895 Iowa State Census and probably died in infancy or early childhood.

Frederick Harrison Ernst was born Thursday, 23 February 1888 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa and died Wednesday, 18 August 1937 at 49 years, 5 months, 26 days of age. He is described on his World War I Draft Registration as of medium height, stout, brown eyes and brown hair, working as a farm laborer on the farm of Thomas Black. He evidently did serve in the military as there is a Veteran’s Administration application for a headstone for him. There is no record that he ever married.

An unnamed son born Saturday, 26 April 1890 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa. There is no name recorded and it is likely he died in infancy or early childhood although there are no records of death this child does not appear on the 1895 state census.

Walter Cleveland Ernst was born Saturday, 14 February 1891 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa and died Saturday, 12 January 1963 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa at 71 years, 10 months, 29 days of age and buried in Logan Park Cemetery, Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa, Section 2, Plot 79 (Find A Grave Memorial No. 8784617). He is described on his World War I Draft Registration as of medium height, medium build, brown eyes and light brown hair, working as a farmer.

Clarence Gifford Ernst was born Wednesday, 23 August 1893 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa and died Friday, 01 May 1964 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa at 70 years, 8 months, 8 days of age and buried Monday, 04 May 1964 in Logan Park Cemetery in the same section and plot as his brother Walter Cleveland (Find A Grave Memorial No. ). He is described on his World War I Draft Registration as of medium height, slender build, brown eyes and black hair and working as a farmer. There is no record that he ever married. Norris Ferdinand, Walter Cleveland and Clarence Gifford were living on a farm together according to the 1940 census, all single and all living there during the preceding five years as well as Frederick Harrison Ernst before his death in 1937.

Any further information about these people would be appreciated.

Hunting the Ernst Line: Part 2 – The Collateral Lines

Lewis/Louis Ernst was born about 1821 in , , Baden, Germany and died Tuesday, 02 March, 1875 in Barclay, Black Hawk, Iowa at 53-54 years of age, he is buried in New Barclay Cemetery, Barclay, Black Hawk, Iowa (Find a Grave Memorial No. 54132948). In about 1852-1853 in Germany he married Christina Keelovin who was born in 1826 in , , Baden, Germany and died before 1900/1905 in , , Iowa. They were the parents of nine children.

Christina Ernst, born about 1854-1855 in , , Baden, Germany. On Saturday, 11 January 1873 in Waterloo, Black Hawk, Iowa she married Edward W. Meinzer who was born in March 1850 in , , , Germany. They were the parents of two children.

Alonzo Edward Meinzer born Saturday, 18 January 1874 in Geneseo, Tama, Iowa and died before 1940 in , , California. He graduated in the thirty-ninth commencement from the Chicago College of Pharmacy, the School of Pharmacy of the University of Illinois on Thursday, 20 April 1899 which was held in the Grand Opera House, Chicago, Cook, Illinois. He was a traveling salesman for W. S. Conrad Company of St. Paul, Ramsey, Minnesota. On Saturday, 30 January 1909 in Chamberlain, Brule, South Dakota he married Lola I. Shackelford who was born Tuesday, 04 march 1890 in , , Kansas, she was the daughter of Fred Shackelford and Delphia (maiden name unknown) Shackelford. The marriage ended before 1910 without issue. On Saturday, 10 November 1917 in , Minnehaha, South Dakota he married Emma D. Hammer who was born in 1885 in , , South Dakota and died Monday, 09 October 1944 in , Davison, South Dakota at 58-59 years of age. The marriage ended in divorce sometime after the birth of their only child, John Eugene Meinzer, who was born Thursday, 16 May 1918 in , , South Dakota and died Tuesday, 03 January 1956 in Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California at 37 years, 7 months, 18 days of age. John Eugene served in the United States Army. There is no further information about his life found to date and it is unknown if he married or had issue. On Wednesday, 25 February 1925 in , Jackson, Missouri he married Mabel Gale High who was born Tuesday, 13 August 1889 in Minneapolis, Hennepin, Minnesota, she was the daughter of David S. High and Nettie Irene McIntyre. There are no children listed on the 1930 census.

Cora Meinzer was born in 1879 in Geneseo, Tama, Iowa and probably died before 1895 in , , Iowa. She is mentioned on the 1880 census and the 1885 Iowa State Census, but disappeared by the 1895 Iowa State Census and there is nothing further that has been found to date. It is possible that she married before the 1895 state census as she was 16 years of age. However there is no record I have found to date that would support that nor have I found a record of death or burial. It is also possible that she was working in the house of another person and was counted as part of that household but her name is nowhere to be found after the 1885 state census.

Any further information about the above people would be appreciated.

Plagues and Famines of England

Excellent Information about the plagues and famines in England.

The Lives of my Ancestors

Plagues and Famines of England

1313 – 1666


Over the centuries England has seen it’s fare share of Plagues and Famines killing many in it’s wake. Tell tale signs of these events can still be seen today, especially in London where some church grounds are set much higher then the road, due to the sheer volume of people buried during these periods.

These Historical events often coincide with our families history, and many of us can trace our lineage to an event in time.

Parish records generally do not list how somebody has died, although there is an exception to this rule, I have seen that some parishes have taken the time to list exceptional stories, like drowning’s, abandoned babies, strange deaths and so on.

Sadly this is not the case for most deaths by plague or famine (there were just to many of them).

Even so, we can still…

View original post 335 more words

Comments Off on Plagues and Famines of England Posted in Genealogy

Hunting the Ernst Line: Part 1 – The Direct Line

This is another of the spouse’s ex’s lines. The previous post noted the marriage of William K. Kittelle and Margaret Pearl Ernst in about 1933-1935. The 1940 United States Census shows William K., Margaret Pearl and their son living in the same house at 6558 South Union Avenue, Chicago, Cook, Illinois as Alexander Joseph Godstein and Mary E. Murphy Kittelle Godstein, the Godsteins owned the home and the Kittelles were renting. Alexander Joseph was working as clerk for an electrical appliance store and William K was a truck driver for the City of Chicago department of streets and alleys according to that census. Mary E. and Margaret Pearl were not noted as working at all. They had all been living there five years previous.

Also noted in the 1940 census, were Margaret Pearl Ernst Kittelle’s parents, or rather her mother Margaret Mae Ketzeback Ernst Bennage and step-father, Roy LeSourd Bennage who resided at 6709 South Halsted Street, Chicago, Cook, Illinois. Roy LeSourd was an Electric Plater doing silver plating, Margaret Mae did not work outside the home, they rented their residence and had lived there during the previous five years.

The two residences are in the same neighborhood and were only a couple blocks apart, based on the satellite image neither building is still standing.

Margaret Pearl Ernst was born Tuesday, 08 August 1911 in Boone, Boone, Iowa to Margaret Mae Ketzback and her first husband, John Henry Carl Ernst. Margaret Mae was born Friday, 11 January 1889 in , , Minnesota and died in January 1978 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois at 88-89 years of age. On Saturday, 10 April 1909 she married John Henry Carl Ernst who was born Wednesday, 12 August 1891 in Clarion, Wright, Iowa to Charles Ernst and Jennie Carl. The marriage ended in divorce about 1911-1912. (On Thursday, 31 May 1917 probably in Chicago, Cook, Illinois she married Roy LeSourd Bennage, he was born Monday, 15 May 1882 in Marionville, Lawrence, Missouri and died Wednesday, 01 September 1965 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois at 83 years, 3 months, 17 days of age, the marriage was without issue.)

John Henry Carl was described on his World War I Draft Registration as 26 years of age, tall, stout build, dark brown hair and eyes and working at the Rock Island Arsenal, Rock Island, Rock Island, Illinois and residing at 314 14th Street, Rock Island, Rock Island, Illinois and a private in the Illinois National Guard, father of a 6-year-old child and single (meaning divorced). There is no evidence that he ever visited or had contact with his daughter. He did not appear in the 1920, 1930 or 1940 censuses. He disappears after the WWI Draft Registration which was filled out Tuesday, 05 June 1917 and there has been nothing further available to indicate what happened to him, he is a dead-end for now.

Charles Ernst was born in 1863 in , , Illinois, although the 1870 census notes his birthplace as , , Iowa, and died probably before 1929 probably in , , Iowa. On Sunday, 13 July 1890 in Lincoln, Wright, Iowa he married Jennie Carl who was born about 1872 in , , Missouri She was the daughter of John Henry Carl and Emma (maiden name unknown) Carl. As far as the available information John Henry Carl Ernst was the only child of the union. Charles and Jennie had little information about them. What I have found on Charles was that he is on the 1870 US Census, as a 7-year-old, the 1880 census has him still living at home with his parents as a 16-year-old, in the 1885 Iowa State Census he was living with his older sister, brother-in-law and their children as a 22-year-old laborer on his brother-in-law’s farm. There is nothing more until his marriage record then the birth record of his son then nothing more. Charles was the son of Lewis/Louis Ernst and Christina Keelovin Ernst. The rest of their children and descendants will follow in another several posts.

Comments Off on Hunting the Ernst Line: Part 1 – The Direct Line Posted in Uncategorized

Hunting the Kittelle Line

This is the spouse’s ex’s line. First I Googled Kittelle and got some interesting and odd links. The first being the article on Wikipedia for Sumner Ely Wetmore Kittelle. Rear Admiral Kittelle may well be a relative, the connection hasn’t been found. Kittelle is not a really common name and while that helped, it also didn’t. The ex’s parents are both dead, however I will leave them in peace as their demise was fairly recent in time. The grandparents however are another matter.

First we have William K. Kittelle. He was born Saturday, 09 January 1904 probably in Chicago, Cook, Illinois. He worked as a truck driver. In about 1933 probably in Chicago, Cook, Illinois he married Margaret Pearl Ernst who was born Tuesday, 08 August 1911 in Boone, Boone, Iowa. They had issue. The spouse’s ex is their grandchild.

Next is John Wesley Kittelle. He was born in February 1865 in , , Illinois according to the 1900 United States Census the family resided at 362 S. Rockwell Avenue, Chicago, Cook, Illinois. He was a harness maker (leather worker, as noted in “The Leather Workers Journal Volume IX, Number 1, p. 131, September 1906 – showing John W. Kittelle as the last name in the first column on that page). He was also a member of the Scottish Rite Masons. In about 1894 probably in Chicago, Cook, Illinois he married Mary E. Murphy who was born Saturday, 01 June 1878 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois. She was the daughter of Martin Murphy of Wexford, Ireland and Jane Graham Murphy of Ireland. The marriage ended in divorce sometime after William K.’s birth in 1904. What happened to John Wesley is unknown, no other marriage records and no death or burial records, a dead-end.

John Wesley and Mary E. had three children, Eveline and Kittellene or Katherine S. (she is listed as Kittellene on the 1900 census) but in later records as Katherine S. or Catherine. Eveline and Kittellene were twins, perhaps identical, but that’s a guess on my part, they were both born in August 1896 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois.

Wm Kaittell and Katherine Kettell appear on the 1910 census, the last names misspelled, with a Mary Godsten as the head of household and an Alex Godstein in residence as a lodger. I found a marriage record for Marie E. Murphy and Alexander J. Godstein who married in Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin on Saturday, 16 April 1910, it was a second marriage for both parties (no information on the first wife or any possible issue) and two of Mary E.’s children were living with them. Eveline had disappeared. I was not able to find anything on her after her one appearance on the 1900 census. No marriage records, no death records. Another dead-end.

By the 1920 census there had been some changes in the household, Alexander Joseph and Mary E. were still together, Alexander Joseph was the head of household, a Catherine Rudnick, Charles A. Rudnick and William K. Kittele were also in residence with them. Kittellene/Katherine/Catherine had married and divorced and come back to her mother’s home to live with her 5 year old son. She had married William Rudnick who was born Saturday, 05 January 1889 in New York, New York, New York on Friday, 27 February 1914 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois and died in June 1982 in , Los Angeles, California at 83 years of age. He worked as a traveling salesman in Illinois and Wisconsin and later as a floor coverings salesman in the Broadway Department Store, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California. He was described in his World War I Draft Registration as of medium height and build, dark brown hair and eyes, in his World War II Draft Registration he is described as 5 feet, 7 inches tall, 160 pounds, brown eyes, black hair and a ruddy complexion. This marriage ended in divorce before 1918. Their son Charles Albert Rudnick was born Wednesday, 21 October 1914 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois, he married, had issue, divorced, married a second time, divorced and married a third time and died Sunday, 25 May 1986 in Escalon, San Joaquin, California at 71 years, 7 months, 4 days of age. It is unknown if his children had issue. Sometime after 1920 Kittellene/Katherine/Catherine married a second time to Jesse Cleveland Gandee who was born Friday, 27 July 1888 in Virginia, Cass, Illinois and died Monday, 17 March 1941 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois at 52 years, 7 months, 18 days of age and is buried in Fairmount Cemetery, Davenport, Scott, Iowa, with his parents, Isaac Albert Gandee and Elizabeth J. Dyer Gandee and sister, Nina Pearl Gandee Berg.  The marriage ended in divorce before 1935 without issue. On the 1940 census Jesse Cleveland was noted as a lodger in the house of Matthew P. Biltgen at 6401 S. Parnell Avenue, Chicago, Cook, Illinois with three other men where he had also been living since 1935 and working as a switchman on the railroad. He worked as a brakeman for the Northern Pacific Railroad and lived in Livingston, Park, Montana at the time he registered for the World War I Draft he had a wife and child at that time, and evidently that marriage ended in divorce, He was described on that World War I Draft Registration as of medium height and build, with brown hair and gray eyes. It is possible that Kittellene/Katherine/Catherine married again after the divorce of Jesse Cleveland but there was nothing I could find and no record of her death.

On the 1930 census Alexander J. and Mary E. still had William K. living with them but in the 1940 census they were alone in the home. On Alexander Joseph’s World War II Draft Registration he is described as 5 feet, 4 inches tall, 126 pounds, gray hair, gray eyes and light complexion. Mary E. Murphy Kittelle Godstein died Saturday, 22 March 1947 in Worth, Cook, Illinois at 68 years, 9 months, 28 days of age and is buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Worth, Cook, Illinois. There is no information available about the death or burial of Alexander Joseph Godstein to date.

I do suspect that John Wesley Kittelle is related to Sumner Ely Wetmore Kittelle, who is probably an uncle or cousin. The connection is still being searched for. There were several Kittelle males who disappeared from the records or on-line genealogies I did find, and perhaps John Wesley is the son of one of them. If anyone does have information about him or his ancestors, it would be appreciated if you’d let me know.

The Beginning

I’ve been doing genealogy for a long time. It wasn’t until the internet and the exploding availability of old records that there’s been the progress I’ve managed to have the last several years.

There has always been an interest in the past for me. Who were those people who came before me? What were their lives like? Where did they come from? Why did they come here? Where did their children go? Are there more people related to me I’ve never known or heard about? How do their lives intertwine with history? Things like that and more have pushed me to dig into the background of my family.

Then for no apparent reason my spouse asked me to see if I could find anything on their family. One of my mother-in-law’s sisters had put together some of the information, no documentation, but mostly right and it was a place to start. There had been a good bit of boast about her family, but nothing about my father-in-law’s people. So the search was on. It’s been beyond interesting, fascinating, compelling both fit and yet more than any of those. It’s been a grand puzzle to solve and it’s led a crooked course across part of America and eventually back to England then Europe. I will not bring the living into this as they would not appreciate it and I would find that too much of an invasion of their privacy.

In the process of the digging, the spouse’s ex also asked me if I’d see what I could find about their family. That too turned into a great puzzle to solve.

What it all amounted to was they both wanted their kids to have some connection to the history of their ancestors and the greater history those lives took place within. My own family are not included because another relative is working on that and has been for more than twenty years and I don’t want to interfere with any publishing they might intend.

I have not attempted to acquire the actual documents from the various state vital records departments, the images and transcriptions have been enough, if the various family members want them they will have to either come up with the necessary funding or order them on their own. The proof is there and that’s sufficient for now. I had thought to become certified in the field, but they want regional specialization and having seen what I’ve dealt with so far, there’s no way to specialize in an area. They also want actual documents and for you to have dug through file drawers in courthouses and other places which is prohibitive for me at this time, they want you to answer a research question, and other things that, while I suppose it proves you’re serious, seems to me to be extraneous and somewhat pompous. So I’ll keep working hard and making sure the sources I do have are the right ones, find more and do the very best I can. Maybe I will eventually be able to do the certification.

I know what I’m doing, I’m pretty good at it too and seem to have a facility for making intuitive leaps that prove right more often than not. I’m mostly interested in the lives these people lived, the descendants they left, maybe some of them might even be interested in connecting with family members who didn’t know there were related.

I haven’t finished yet, I doubt that it’s possible to actually finish something like the kind of massive undertaking this has been. The number of people keeps growing the more information I find. A grand and fascinating investigative journey I’m enjoying.