Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Andrew Kempf

Snapshot of my grandfather (Andrew Kempf) and 2 friends! My grandfather was born 7 May 1897, so this photo is probably early 1900's....he lived to be 96 years old so I guess he always was young at heart!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday: Joseph & Katharina Haldi

My Great, Great, Great Paternal Grandparents


GEB [born]
8 Mar 1807 [in Fellering, Haut Rhin, Alsace, France]
GEST [died]
18 May 1849

GEB [born]
6 Feb 1804 [in Echolzmatt, Switzerland]
GEST [died]
10 Oct 1878

Joseph and Katharina [nee Haller] Haldi immigrated to Castroville, Medina County, Texas on 5 Jan 1847. They arrived in Galveston, Texas on the ship, Schanunga.

They are buried in St. Louis Catholic Cemetery in Castroville, Medina County, Texas. The last name Haldi evolved to Halty by 1900 and is currently used today in Medina County with that spelling.

Katharina Haller Haldi died soon after arriving in Castroville, and her grave is the earliest marked grave in St. Louis Catholic Cemetery.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Jello Salad--Which Food Group Is It?

Weekly Genealogy Blogging Prompt: Week #6 - Let readers in to your kitchen. Discuss your family’s favorite foods. What was a typical Sunday dinner in your childhood house? What did grandma make that had you coming back for more? Were there any dishes that the dog wouldn’t even eat? Thanks to We Tree for the inspiration!

Well, I am a tad behind on my blogging, but I wanted to make sure that I blog on a prompt from 2 weeks ago! While I could describe any number of food traditions in my family, I think I would like to talk about....Jello!!!

The phenonomen of Jello Salad is totally lost on my Brooklyn, NY born and bred husband while it was a staple in my house growing up in Texas! In my house, jello was one of the basic food groups, while my husband doesn't even consider it edible! 

The big debate over any gathering, was 1) who is going to bring the jello salad? and 2) which jello salad should they make? 

Would it be the Orange Jello with Pinapple and Grated Carrots? My grandmother Kempf loved to make that one! 

Orange-Carrot Salad
  • 1 (6 oz.) pkg. orange flavored gelatin
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups cold water
  • 2 large carrots, shredded
  • 1 (11 oz.) can mandarin oranges, drained
  • 1 (15 oz.) can crushed pinapple, undrained
  • Carrot curls
  • Lettuce
Dissolve gelatin in boiling water, and stir in cold water. Chill until partially set.

Fold carrots, oranges and pinapple into thickened gelatin. Spoon into an oiled 2-qt. mold; chill until set. Unmold on lettuce and garnish with carrot curls. Yield: 12-15 servings.

Or would it be the Rosy Strawberry Jello with sour cream topping? Here is the recipe handwritten by me in high school (circa 1975) where I got the recipe from my home economics teacher (I guess I am dating myself here!):

Rosy Strawberry Ring

Note: I usually made this in a glass dish and did not bother to unmold it. I would spread the sour cream topping over it before serving.

A twist that was sometimes served was Green Jello with Pear Halves. That was something special because it involved layering!

Under-the-Sea Pear Salad
  • 1 can (16 oz.) pear halves
  • 1 pkg. (3 oz.) Jell-O Lime Gelatin
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 TBS lemon juice
  • 2 pkgs. (3 oz. each) cream cheese
  • 1/8 tsp. ginger
Drain pears, reserving 3/4 cup of the syrup. Coarsely dice pears and set aside. Dissolve gelatin and salt in boiling water.  Add pear syrup and lemon juice. Measure 1 1/4 cups into an 8x4-inch loaf pan or a 4-cup mold. Chill until set, but not firm-about 1 hour.

Meanwhile, soften cheese until creamy. Very slowly blend in remaining gelatin, beating until smooth. Blend in ginger. Stir in pears. Spoon over set gelatin in pan. Chill until firm-about 4 hours. Unmold and garnish with chicory or watercress. Serve with mayonnaise, if desired. Makes about 3 1/2 cups or 6 serviings.

Note: Recipe may be doubled, using a 9x5-inch loaf pan.
~The New Joys of Jell-O, General Foods: White Plains, 1974. 69.

I am the proud owner of The New Joys of Jell-O (copyright 1974), and I have a couple of jello molds stashed here somewhere, but since getting married, haven't had a chance to use them much! LOL!!

Maybe on that next trip to Texas......

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Kreativ Blogger Award


Wow, was I ever surprised to learn that seven of my new blogger friends have nominated my blog for the Kreativ Blogger Award! This is a nice surprise, especially considering my little "break" from blogging due to an overly hectic schedule which got derailed by an upper respiratory illness. It is amazing to me how quickly one gets behind after feeling poorly and now I am trying to play catch up!

First word of the award came from Greta Koehl (at 6:45 AM on 19 Sept.) from Greta's Genealogy Blog. At 9:34, Cindy from Everything's Relative stopped my blog to inform me she had the same idea. Later that evening, at 10:09 PM, I got word from Colleen from Orations of OMcHodoy. Then the next day, 20 Sept., Sheri from Twig Talk and Debbie from Blanton Family Roots and Branches  nominated me! It didn't stop there because at 11:52 PM, Jennifer from Jennifer's Genealogy Blog contact me to tell me that she too nominated me! Virginia just contacted me today, but I already had this post completed, so I am keeping her on my list below (see #3). I feel honored! Thank you!

Here are the instructions:
1. Copy the award to your site.
2. Link to the person from whom you received the award.
3. Nominate 7 other bloggers. (how to choose only 7!!)
4. Link to those sites on your blog.
5. Leave a message on the blogs you nominate.

I read many blogs every week. Any extra time is taken up. I learn all the time thanks to them. Here are my choices for the award:
  1. Battlefield Wanderings--I love this blog since I have two Civil War Veterans that I am keep ing track of....Nick does a great job of helping you to visualize a variety of Civil War Battlefields.
  2. Delia's Genealogy Blog--Delia's blog is full of information and family research.
  3. Oh Blah Vi, Oh Blah Va: Life Goes On....--Virginia chronicles her family research on Ancestry, Family Search, Find-A-Grave, etc. among other interesting genealogy related topics.
  4. Cemeteries with Texas Ties--Judy posts great photos, research findings and informative posts connected to Texas cemeteries.
  5. Find Your Folks--Professor Dru blogs about organizational tips, research findings, professional conferences and all things related to genealogy.
  6. Another Day With Donna--Donna journals daily activities, travel and especially genealogy.
  7. Nordic Blue--Cheryl blogs about her family and pioneer history and Norwegian-American  genealolgy.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday: Franz Joseph Haby & Katerina Koenig

Franz Joseph Haby
Born 30 Sep 1820
Oberentzen, Alsace, France

Died 22 Feb 1904
Castroville, Medina County, Texas

Katerina (Katherine) Koenig
Born 18 Mar 1828
Berrwiller, Alsace, France

Died 1 May 1917
Castroville, Medina County, Texas

My maternal great-great-great grandparents
Buried in St. Louis Catholic Cemetery
Castroville, Medina County, Texas

Obituary for Katherina Koenig Haby

~transcribed by Frances Neumann from the LaCoste Ledger

Sunday, February 1, 2009

The Happy Dance! Going Back One More Generation.

The theme for the 65th Carnival of Genealogy: "The Happy Dance. The Joy of Genealogy. Almost everyone has experienced it. Tell us about the first time, or the last time, or the best time. What event, what document, what special find has caused you to stand up and cheer, to go crazy with joy?

My happy dance had to be in the summer of 2002 when my husband and I went to Manhattan to research at the New York Genealogy & Biographical Society (NYGBS). Although we were members, we had never visited their library and didn't really know what to expect. We met some really nice librarians and patrons doing research and we had fun going back in all of the early directories where my husband's great great grandfather, Frederick Christmann, would appear. We knew he fought in the Civil War, and having already acquired his Pension File from NARA, we had some dates to use. We knew that he married 3 times and the dates of each marriage was recorded in this file. Frederick Christmas was born in Lahr, Germany and his wives were German.

The cool thing about this visit was that someone at the library told us that the St. Matthew's German Lutheran Church Records were on microfilm and that we should go through them to find the record of his marriages.

My husband sat at one microfilm machine and I at another and we tediously went through the rolls of film looking for Frederick. It sounds easier than it actually was. The church records were handwritten and in GERMAN!

My husband was the lucky winner, finding Frederick's second and third marriage entries. We never found his first marriage. I think we knew from the Civil War pension file that the 2nd and 3rd marriages were at St. Matthew's German Lutheran Church. We are not sure when or where the 1st marriage took place.

The records that we found provided the names of his parents, hometown and the names of each of his wives and their addressess! We also found out that his second wife, the woman my husband descends from, was a widow and we were later able to find some half-cousins from her first marriage! The marriage record for his 3rd wife, provided names for Frederick's parents.

We BOTH did the happy dance when my husband found this record and I will always remember that sense of accomplishment we both felt at the end of a very long day!

Here is the record for his second marriage. It is jam packed full of vital information. Thank goodness we had a friend in Germany to assist us with the transcription:

Frederick Christman and Eliza Eggersmann's marriage is the last one listed on this image. If you click on it, it will enlarge. They were married on August 7, 1864 in New York, New York.


Frederick Christmann, Wittwer [widower]; aus Lahr, Baden; 44 Jahr; 275 Mulberry Str; Schneider [tailor]; und Wittwe [widow] Elise Eggersmann; geb. [maiden name] Meier; aus Salzhausen, Hannover; 36 Jahr; Crosby Str. 35; Zeuge [witness]: David Mebold Mulberry Str. 277. Christian Zimmermann 275 Mulberry Str. (legitimiert durch C. Stollmann; Mott Str. 167) [legitimacy by C. Stollmann]

It was through his marriage to his 3rd wife that we discovered the name's of Frederick's parents. And we almost stopped when we found the record for the marriage that my husband descends from! What a mistake that would have been....

In this record, we found out his father's name was also Frederick and his mother was Salome Maaler.

This just goes to show you, you are never finished until you are finished...and that is sometimes hard to tell in genealogy!!!