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Welcome

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Family history?

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Documents?

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Explore our history

The past needs a voice. This website is dedicated to highlighting the stories that have gone silent. Those tales are no longer lost.

Our ancestors shared similar paths. They traveled from the old country to the new. They dealt with hardships in strange cities and homesteads. They made their way through hard and lean times. You're here because of them. This is a resource to celebrate their lives and all that we've found out about them through research and documents.

If your background includes any of our featured surnames, please feel free to check out these links at your leisure. You may find something of interest. Maybe a connection to your family?

Each featured surname has its own history page with as many of the family details as we know. Links to relevant documents are included. Explore, enjoy...and if you have any questions at all, please drop us a line.

Latest updates: New photos from Petersen relatives were added on June 28, 2015. New Laurent and Lorentz information has been added August 8, 2014 to the All Names table, with updates to our Müller page on July 16, 2014. New documents related to our Laurent/Lorentz line were uploaded on February 4, 2014. If you see any likely matches from your own family history or need to reach the webmaster, please click Contact above and drop us a note.

As the great sage once said, "Everything is illuminated in the light of the past."



A closer look

These are just three of our featured ancestral families

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Müller is a common-enough name, in our family traceable to the early 1700s in the area around Flörsheim am Main. Our early Müllers were hunters for the estates of noblemen. Their descendant, Ludwig Müller (above), born in 1819 became a clergyman and emigrated to America where he was an esteemed Lutheran pastor.

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This tinted photograph shows the children of George and Arnolda (Von Oven) Jatho around 1889 in Charleston. Georgia, Maryliese, and Herbert were second generation children whose immigrant grandfather, Georg Wilhelm Jatho, came to Charleston in 1848 looking for better economic times and political stability.

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The Petersen brothers came from northern Schleswig to Nebraska in the 1870s to farm the land. Some settled in Mason City and Omaha, while some ventured further afield to Kenosha, Wisconsin and Chicago, Illinois (where a Petersen sister had settled). All of them left numerous progeny whom we can thank for these photos.

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