Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Looking For My German Ancestors: My Research Experiences Part 2

In my previous post, I wrote about how I first began researching for my German ancestors. This time, I thought I would go into a little bit more detail, and write about one of my German ancestors of whom I'll call Carl.

When I first started to do research on Carl, all I knew was his name, his occupation and the fact that he died before my grandma was born. (I also knew that he came from Germany, but I did not know where. In fact, I still do not know.) After searching for Carl and his family in the U. S. censuses and his marriage record, I started to look for when Carl came to America. From the 1900 census, I learned that Carl had gotten naturalized before 1900, and that he came to America about 1881. To see if I could find out where pre-1900 naturalizations were held, I did some searching on the Library of Michigan's website, and came across some naturalization indexes for naturalization held by the State Archives of Michigan. I searched the online index for Bay County, and found my ancestor. I also found another man, named Fred, with the same surname as my ancestor. (I suspect that there may be a connection between these two men, as the only people with this surname in Bay County are connected to my ancestors.) Unfortunately, the naturalization records for both men are only half of a sheet long, and neither lists where in Germany they came from.

The next thing that I tried to do was find out when Carl came to the U. S. On his naturalization record, he stated that he came to the U. S. in 1882, so I decided to look for him in passenger lists. So far, my search has not been successful. I still do not know when or where Carl entered the U. S., and I still do not know where in Germany he came from. In the next post, I'll discuss the possibility of a connection between Carl and Fred and more on my research on Carl.

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