08 June 2011

Another Piece to the Puzzle-Researching Collateral Lines

Last month, I wrote about my success with researching my maternal great grandfather's sisters and finding his mother.    I am still trying to find what part of Prussia, now Poland,  J. August Fredrick was from.  I continued my research into his oldest sister, Henriette Fredrich Zobel, and found a passport application for her son, Charles A. Zobel. 

Source:  U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925," [database on-line], Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 9 May 2011), entry for Charles A. Zobel; Passport Applications, 1795-1905; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M1372, 694 rolls) 

Charles A. Zobel applied for a U.S. passport in 1922 to travel and visit relatives in Germany and Poland.  He lists his birthplace as:  "near city of Nakel, Germany, now Poland".  I had found his parent's, Johann Zobel and Henriette Fredrich, marriage place as Nakel, Poznan, Prussia. 

I guess I am wondering what the chance is of Henriette Fredrich living away from her family and if this could be the area my great grandfather is from.  She was married in 1862; her son, Charles, was born in 1864.  The Zobel family immigrated to the United States in 1870.  J. August Fredrich immigrated in 1872. Unfortunately, the immigration records have been destroyed for Manistee County (so I was told by a county clerk). 

I know the Zobel family and J. August's family were members of the German Lutheran Church in Manistee, Michigan.  It may be time to take a look for Lutheran parish records for Nakel. 

What do you think?  Any suggestions, where to go next?


  1. I also have Prussian ancestors that emigrated to Manistee. Several of them died in Detroit and I found their birthplaces confirmed in the church register of Historic Trinity Lutheran in Detroit. I am hoping to get to Manistee this summer and investigate the church registers there as well.

  2. There seem to be quite a few Prussian settlers in Manistee. I wonder if they were recruited by agents to settle there. I will have to check church records in Manistee also. Thanks for the idea. Brenda

  3. Brenda,
    I was in Manistee this past weekend and was able to look through the old ledgers at Trinity Lutheran. I was able to find the West Prussian origin of one of my 'mystery' families in the confirmation register, which asks for place of baptism. This information was not consistently recorded in every year-I got lucky. The earlier years (pre-1900) seemed to contain more town names.

    The Trinity ledgers are full of information so I hope you get there before the place burns down or floods. No LDS microfilm!

  4. Barb, thank you for the information. I will have to get up there and check it out. Keep your fingers crossed I have as good of luck as you did.