Category Archives: Nantz
We all have an ongoing saga we can tell of our search for certain pieces of missing family history. It may be a female ancestor’s maiden name, documentation on an immigrant ancestor’s arrival in this country or family photos. Our list is probably long and with each tiny bit of new found information we just add more to our brick wall to-do list.
That’s certainly true in my own family history research. My father’s family has gaping holes in it. His father was an immigrant and when he left the old country he left the family history there as well. My father’s maternal side is much better researched. I have names and dates but not a lot of personal information. I’ve chalked that up to my dad being the second of nine children and not paying much attention to family stories and lore. In fact that was also the case with his siblings too. Discussing their family lore was not a favorite topic of my aunts and uncles.
So my father’s maternal side is a bit scant genealogy-wise. I have one picture of my dad as a baby. Then his next photo skips his entire childhood and is his high school graduation picture. In fact his baby picture is actually a family picture taken with both his parents and older brother.
This same family photo is the only image I have of his mother, my grandmother. Sadly I never knew her. She died when my dad was seventeen. Her death brought a lot of upheaval in the family and my grandfather remarried several times after her death. Whenever me or my genealogy-buddy sisters inquired about a family bible and photos we were always answered with a shrug and “Who knows?”
Yet through the years we’ve asked about family photos and now when only first cousins remain we’ve always gotten the same “Who knows?” reply. That is until this past Monday. My sisters met a couple of my cousins for coffee and they brought pictures. Not just any pictures. Treasures. Family heirlooms. Pieces of our past.
There were a couple pictures of our grandmother, the woman my dad revered above all others and also her parents! I think she’s just beautiful in the one picture of her by herself. If that wasn’t enough there’s a pic of my great grandparents! My sisters and I had never laid eyes on them before! Oh my goodness! What a find! I couldn’t believe it!
. . . . and my voice rang out “Alleluia!” I still haven’t descended from cloud nine!!!
Just in case we might be related my grandmother is Flora Alice Nantz Frueh. She was born 23 May 1888 in Convoy, Van Wert County, Ohio She died 18 Oct 1932 in Lima, Allen County, Ohio.
Her parents were William Albert Nantz and Irene Louisa Waller. William was born 4 Apr 1868 in Jackson County, Ohio. He died 14 Feb 1953 in Mercer County, Ohio.
Irene Louisa Waller was born 31 July 1871 in Convey, Van Wert County, Ohio and died 13 May 1927 in Lima, Allen County, Ohio.
If branches of our family tree cross email me email@example.com I’d love to talk with you!
I’ve made digital copies of these pics and the originals have been returned to my cousin with the promise she’ll look for additional pics. The possibility there are more photos of this family line almost leaves me sleepless! I can’t wait until the next coffee meet up. I’ll be there!
So the moral of the story? Don’t give up! Perseverance pays off. It may take years but some pieces of our past will come back to us. We just need to continue our search and try to wait (patiently).
Do you have a story of family history suddenly showing up? I’d love to hear it! Let me know in the comments.
I’ll bet you have, haven’t you? It’s happened to me! As I read their account of this wonderful genealogical treasure arriving out of the blue there’s this tiny little voice at the back of my mind that whispers, “Oh man! How come I don’t get my great grandmother’s diary or a family photo album filled with ten generations of photos all identified!”
Now I know we all cheer when a genealogist is contacted by a previously unknown cousin through their blog. Especially when that distant cousin has info about the blogger’s direct ancestors. Lucky dogs! We smile and give them a Hooray! when they receive a package in the mail. One that contains oodles of handwritten family letters loaded with valuable family information or the afore mentioned Bible. We marvel at their luck! We thank the genealogy gods on their behalf and quickly check our inbox for a similar message. I also turn a couple shades of green. I know, I know. Not cool but I wonder, “When is it going to be me?”
Then another small voice (who seems to show up at these times of envy!) reminds me of all the valuable family heirlooms I already have. Like
My gg grandmother Nancy Estice Nance was the ancestor that was chosen and beside her vital information I could only come up with two facts about her. I really felt I’d let her down. So I’ve spent my available time doing some online research about Nancy Estice Nance.
I did know that both Nancy and her husband, my gg grandfather James W. Nance were born in Ohio. They lived in Washington Township, Jackson County, Ohio. They were married 18 Sep 1859 and were the parents of my g grandfather William A. Nantz (not sure yet why the surname spelling changed in this generation) and both died in Van Wert County, Ohio.
So I launch my research from these facts. Of course they don’t show up in several census’ (when is this supposedly simple step ever easy?) So I browse through the entire 1860, 1870 and 1880 census
It’s a quiet Sunday afternoon here and I decided to catch up on some of the genealogy blogs I follow. After reading only three I found two had participated in Randy Seaver’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun on his blog Genea-Musings. It sounded pretty good so I decided to jump in. This week’s challenge was Ancestor Roulette.
These were Randy’s instructions:
1) What year was one of your great-grandfathers born? Divide this number by 100 and round the number off to a whole number. This is your “roulette number.”
2) Use your pedigree charts or your family tree genealogy software program to find the person with that number in your ancestral name list (some people call it an “ahnentafel”). Who is that person, and what are his/her vital information?
3) Tell us three facts about that person in your ancestral name list with the “roulette number.”
4) Write about it in a blog post on your own blog, in a Facebook status or a Google Stream post, or as a comment on this blog post.
5) NOTE: If you do not have a person’s name for your “roulette number” then “spin” the wheel again – pick a great-grandmother, a grandfather, a parent, a favorite aunt or cousin, yourself, or even your children!
So here’s what I came up with: