29 August 2009

A New Cousin

In the last week, I came across a treasure trove of information on my Swedish ancestry in the recent archives of RootsWeb's Sweden mailing list. There were several posts from a Brenda in Seattle regarding Carl Jacob Johnson and his wife Stina Lotta Jonsdotter, which just happen to be my great-great-grandparents (my maternal grandmother's paternal grandparents for those of you keeping score at home). In one of her posts, she mentioned their son, Gustaf Adolph, so I knew I was on to something important.

I mentioned these posts in an email to my 2nd cousin Janice, with whom I share Gust as a great-grandfather. Turns out she had already been in contact with Brenda. So I contacted Brenda and it turns out she had already been in contact with my mother and brother, Ross. I am obviously way out of the loop when it comes to my Swedish roots.

Brenda, as it happens, is my 3rd cousin--we share Carla and Stina/Christina as great-great-grandparents. Her great-grandmother, Anna, was Gust's sister. I sent Brenda a picture of Christina that she had not seen and a wedding day picture of Gust and his wife Rose. She has promised to send me pictures, obituaries and more immigration info about the family (Carl and Stina brought the family over in 1881) when she returns from vacation. Hurry home, Brenda!

Here are Gust's ancestors in graphic form:

Here is an afentahl for my great-grandfather. I've put in bold the info I have managed to gleam from Brenda's many posts to the mailing lists asking for help with understanding the records she has found in Genlines. Mark from Oconomowac has generously chipped in often on replies with info from the PLF CDs that contain databases of parish data from Kalmar County.

1. Gustaf Adoph JOHNSON b:18-Aug-1867 in Locknevi parish, Kalmar County, Småland Province, Sweden; m:4-Sep-1899 to Rosabel STRAYER in Rock Island County, IL, USA; d:25-Dec-1941 in Henning,Otter Tail County,MN,USA

2. Carl Jacob JOHANSSON b:01-July-1832 in Vrångfall, Locknevi, Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; m:04-Sep-1863 in Locknevi, Kalmar, Småland, Sweden; d:17-Oct-1915 in Orion,Henry County,IL,USA

3. Christina Lotta JÖNSDOTTER b:04-Jul-1839 in Slottsbäcken,Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; d:10-Oct-1919 in Gordon,Sheridan County,NE,USA

4. Johan Peter KARLSSON b:19-Jul-1807 in Vrångfall,Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; m: 17-Nov-1830 in Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden d: 29-May-1852 in Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden

5. Stina Greta JAKOBSDOTTER b:03-Oct-1806 in Hallingshult,Locknevi, Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; d:20-May-1845 in Vrångfall,Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden

6. Jonas (UHRE) NILSSON b:12-May-1796 in Junkerhorfva,Hjorted,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; m: 7-Feb-1819 in Hjorted,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; d:14-Oct-1862 in Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden

7. Lisa PERSDOTTER b:22-Oct-1796 in Strömsnäs Av Bergebo,Hjorted,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; d:22-Apr-1848 in Sweden

8. Karl HINRICSSON b: 21-Oct-1764 in Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden m:26-Dec-1789 in Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden; d:26 Mar 1827 in Locknevi,Kalmar,Småland,Sweden


10. Jakob HIERONYMISSON b: 1776


12. Nils SVENSSON d: 1805

13. Anna JONSDOTTER b: abt 1769

14. Peter STÅL (The last name means "steel." That's a military name, don't have his patronym.)

15. Kierstin Larsdotter b: abt 1766; second marriage since the record lists her as a widow

The information that Brenda has posted also contains details on baptisms, burials, jobs and residences. How am I ever going to find time to capture all of this into our family tree? I really appreciate Brenda and her mailing list helpers for digging through all of the records and gathering up this wonderfl information.

08 August 2009

More grave markers

A few weeks ago I stumbled across the Find a Grave web site. I spent some time searching for various family names and was surprised that my search for "Strayer" turned up my great-great-grandfather and grandmother. Abraham STRAYER and his wife Harriet Alice (HOWARD) STRAYER are buried side by side in Chippiannock Cemetery, Rock Island, IL. Buried nearby is their son, John Howard STRAYER.

When my brother Ross was visiting from Texas last May, I considered having us spend a day in the Quad Cities trying to locate family graves. Since we had no information on where exactly they were buried, it seemed like a fool's errand. Especially since the forecast called for non-stop rain. With this information, it wold have been easily done. Maybe next time.

The information and pictures at Find a Grave were posted anonomously in August 2006. The grave marker and information posted for Abraham list his birth year as 1822. I had it as 1823, but I had no source listed. The 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880 US Census records are little help. Using the information from them, his birth year would be 1823, 1824, 1822 and 1822, respectively. His enlistment information in the Spring of 1862 lists his age as 39, which would make his birth year 1822. I pulled out his Civil War pension file. In a quick perusal of the 100+ pages, I could find no birth date listed. All of his given ages on various documents point to a birth year of 1822. I think I have enough evidence to justify changing the year to 1822 until I can find a Pensylvania baptism record.

The information posted for Harriet differs from mine in the death date. I had 14-Apr-1914. The poster to Find a Grave has it as 2-Apr-1914. Again a quick perusal of the Civil War pension file for her claims as a widow confirms a death date of 2-Apr. That explains why, on a recent trip to the State Archives in Des Moines, I cold not find an obituary for her in any Davenport newspaper--I was looking almost two weeks too late. I also happened to find a mention in the pension file that she had beeen buried in Chippiannock Cemetery. So, with a little research, I could have taken my brother there after all.