Favorite Picture

Dorothy in Center, Left her grandmother (Eva) on right her mother (Helen)

The theme this week for 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is favorite picture.  This fits in nicely with what I have been doing lately and that is posting pictures and telling a story to go with the picture.  I have many favorite pictures so it was hard to pick just one. This happens to be one of my favorite pictures because it is three generations of strong women.  The picture  was taken in 1938.  From the left is my great-grandmother, Eva Bowers, my mother, Dorothy Kaiser (age 14), and my grandmother, Helen Kaiser nee Bowers.  I think the picture was  probably taken in front of my great-grandmother’s place in Chicago.  By 1938 my grandparents were living in Villa Park, Illinois and this is not their home.  I wish I could have been in the picture to make it four generations, but I was not born yet and by the time I came along, Eva had already passed away.  I never knew Eva, but heard a lot about her from my mom and grandma.  Eva was born in Heidelberg, Baden, Germany to Johann Konrad Reinhardt and Anna Maria Schwebler on February 14, 1877. [1] Eva came to the United States when she was almost two years old.[2]  Her brother John was born on the boat.[3]  Her first home in the United States was in Amana, Iowa.[4]  They spent a few years in Amana and then moved to Ottawa, Illinois where Eva grew up with her brothers and sisters.[5]   Eva grew into a young woman and sometime around 1896 she married Robert Bowers also of Ottawa, Illinois.[6]  The family story is that Robert and Eva ran off to Chicago to be married.  I have never been able to find a marriage record for them in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. According to family stories, Robert’s family never accepted Eva as his wife or acknowledged that any of the children were Roberts.  I started to wonder if they were ever really married and that is why Robert’s family didn’t want anything to do with Eva or their children.  However, when Robert’s father died, Robert and Eva as his wife signed a quit-claim deed to a piece of property to Robert’s mother.[7]  I was told that if they were not married, Eva would not need to sign the quit-claim deed.  Perhaps they were married somewhere other than Chicago.  Robert and Eva had three children, Ralph born in 1897,[8] Helen in 1898[9] and Frances in 1900. [10]  Shortly after Frances was born Robert left Eva.  Again family stories say they were divorced, however I have never found divorce records for them.  In 1900 Eva was on her own and had to make a living for her and her three kids.  She raised the three kids alone and I believe this made her a strong woman.

My grandmother and mother did not have easy lives and to survive all their trials and tribulations they had to be strong.  My grandmother died at age 82 and my mother at age 62.  I believe my mother’s early death was caused by some of the problems in her life.

Copyright ©2019 Gail Grunst

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[1] Certificate of Death for Eva Bowers;  State of Illinois, Department of Public health, Division of Vital Statistics, Springfield, Illinois, Registration Number 34633. Date of death: December 23, 1941; Place of death: County of Cook, City of Chicago.

[2] Ira A. Glazier and P. William Filbry, ed., Germans to America: List of passengers arriving at U.S. ports, Volume 34 October 1878 – December 1879; ( Wilmington, Delaware, Scholarly Resources,1993), Page 106.

[3] Ibid

[4] Conrad Reinhardt household, 1880 U. S. Census, Amana, Iowa; Roll 345; Family History Film 1254345; page 146D; Enumeration District 201; Image 0155.

[5] From family stories told to this author.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Quit-claim deed record from Robert Bowers and Eva Bowers, his wife to Alexena Bowers, City of Ottawa, County of LaSalle, state of Illinois; deed book 448, page 167.  LaSalle County Illinois Genealogical Guild collection.

[8] Eva Bowers household, 1900 U. S. Federal  Census, LaSalle County, Ottawa township, ED 76, line 37, page 6, dwelling 557, fmily124, National Archives film publication T623, roll 317.

[9] Delayed Record of Birth for Helen Bowers, State of Illinois, Department of Public Health, Division of Vital Statics, LaSalle County, City of Ottawa, State of Illinois, Date of Birth: December 3, 1898, Dated August  7, 1957.

[10] Eva Bowers household, 1900 U. S. Federal  Census, LaSalle County, Ottawa township, ED 76, line 37, page 6, dwelling 557, fmily124, National Archives film publication T623, roll 317.

 

Christmas 1927

Everyday until Christmas, I am going to try to post a picture from a past family Christmas. 

Mom on Horse with Santa 1927.jpg

Mom and Santa 1927

This is my Mom again with Santa in 1927. I don’t think I ever saw a Santa outfit quite like this one. Love the outfit my mother has on.  It looks like it would be warm.  My grandmother wrote “Howe Street” on the back.  So I am assuming that this was taken on Howe Street in Chicago.  No date on picture other than 1927, but I assume it is near Christmas and there is snow on the ground.  I wonder did Santa walk up and down the streets of Chicago to have his picture taken with children.  We are use to seeing Santa in department stores.  The picture appears to be a professional one, not just a snapshot.  

Copyright © 2019 Gail Grunst

First Son: Albert

 

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The 316th Field Artillery 81st division boarding a train at Knotty Ash Depot to Southhampton, Liverpool, England August 14 1918.  From: httpdigital.ncdcr.govcdmrefcollectionp15012coll10id1564

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks  week 1 of 2019 the topic is “first”.  

Albert Grunst, Jr. was the first son born to Albert Grunst and Anna Schmerling.[1]  Albert was born on 5 August, 1892 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois.[2]  Albert joined his older sister Alma at home and by 1900 two more siblings, Lillian and Walter, were added to the family.[3]  In 1901 the last sibling, Elmer, was born.[4]

Sometime between 1900 and 1910 the family moved from Chicago, Illinois to the suburb of Cicero, Illinois.[5]  In 1910 Albert’s occupation is a key fitter for a piano company.[6]   Twenty-two year old Albert married twenty-two year old Adeline Olsen on 12 February 1913.[7]  The age on Albert’s marriage certificate seems to be different from his birth certificate.  It lists his birth year as 1891 yet his birth certificate says 1892. I believe his birth certificate to be right.  Albert’s WWI draft card lists that he married and his address is 21 E. Van Buren St., Chicago, Illinois, however that address is crossed out and 3046 S. 48th Court, Cicero, Illinois is written in as his address.[8]   He is working as painter for a Harry Bloom in Chicago.[9]  Albert’s physical characteristics are listed as medium height, slender build, grey-blue eyes, and dark brown hair, and he is not bald.[10]  

On 5 August 1918 Albert left the Port of New York on the ship Aquitania with his fellow troops of Battery E 316th field Artillery 81st Division.[11]  “The 81st Infantry Division “Wildcats” was organized as a National Division of the United States Army in August 1917 during World War I at Camp Jackson, South Carolina. The division was originally organized with a small cadre of Regular Army officers, while the soldiers were predominantly Selective Service men drawn from the southeastern United States. After organizing and finishing training, the 81st Division deployed to Europe, arriving on the Western Front in August 1918. Elements of the 81st Division first saw limited action by defending the St. Dié sector in September and early October. After relief of mission, the 81st Division was attached to the American First Army in preparation for the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. In the last days of World War I, the 81st Division attacked a portion of the German Army‘s defensive line on 9 November 1918, and remained engaged in combat operations until the Armistice with Germany at 1100 hours on 11 November 1918. After the cessation of hostilities, the 81st Division remained in France until May 1919; after which the division was shipped back to the United States and inactivated on 11 June 1919.”[12]  By the account of this article, it looks like Albert may have seen some action.  Albert departed Brest, France on 28 May 1919 aboard the Minnesota, and arrived back in the United States on 9 June 1919.[13] 

In 1920 Albert is living with his parents, brothers and sister in Cicero, Illinois, and his marital status is listed as single.[14]  He is working as a house painter in 1920.[15]  I can’t seem to find out what happened to Adeline.  In 1942 Albert is living in Chicago, Illinois and works for Wiebolts Dry Goods Co. at Milwaukee and Paulina in Chicago.[16]  Albert passed away on 26 April 1952 at 59 years, 8 months, and 21 days.[17]  He is buried in Bethania Cemetery with his mother, father, and brother.[18]  I can find no evidence that Albert remarried or had any children.

Copyright © 2019 Gail Grunst

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[1] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.  “Illinois. Cook County Birth Registers, 1871–1915.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah. Illinois. Cook County Birth Registers, 1871–1915. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.
[2] Ibid.
[3] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information
Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.  Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.
[4] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 20A; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251
Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.  Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.
[5] Ibid.
[6] Ibid.
[7] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Marriages Index, 1871-1920 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011. Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Marriages, 1871–1920.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2010. Illinois Department of Public Health records. “Marriage Records, 1871–present.” Division of Vital Records, Springfield, Illinois.
[8] Registration State: Illinois; Registration County: Cook; Roll: 1452380; Draft Board: 01.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005.  Original data: United States, Selective Service System. World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration. M1509, 4,582 rolls. Imaged from Family History Library microfilm.
[9] Ibid.
[10] Ibid.
[11] The National Archives at College Park; College Park, Maryland; Record Group Title: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774-1985; Record Group Number: 92; Roll or Box Number: 377.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016.
[12] From Wikipedia Website: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/81st_Infantry_Division_(United_States)
[13] The National Archives at College Park; College Park, Maryland; Record Group Title: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774-1985; Record Group Number: 92; Roll or Box Number: 204.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016.
[14] Year: 1920; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T625_359; Page: 6A; Enumeration District: 54.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920. (NARA microfilm publication T625, 2076 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA. Note: Enumeration Districts 819-839 are on roll 323 (Chicago City).
[15] Ibid.
[16] The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; World War II Draft Cards (Fourth Registration), for The State of Illinois; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System, 1926-1975; Record Group Number: 147; Series Number: M2097.  Source Information: Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.  Original data:  United States, Selective Service System. Selective Service Registration Cards, World War II: Fourth Registration. Records of the Selective Service System, Record Group Number 147. National Archives and Records Administration.
[17] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois Death Index, 1908-1988 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008.  Original data: Cook County Clerk. Cook County Clerk Genealogy Records. Cook County Clerk’s Office, Chicago, IL: Cook County Clerk, 2008.
[18] Ancestry.com. U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.  Original data: Find A Grave. Find A Grave. http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi.

Nice Uncle Ralph

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks  topic this week is “Nice”.  The first person that came to mind was my grandmother’s brother Ralph.  Uncle Ralph died when I was 16 years old so I got to know him.  I loved him and thought he was the nicest person I had ever known.  I still think that.  I wrote about him a couple of years ago and decided to repost it.  Here is his story.

ralph-bowers

Uncle Ralph

Ralph C. Bowers was born 18 June 1897 to Eva Reinhardt and Robert Bowers in Chicago, Illinois[1].  He was my grandmother’s brother and my great uncle.  I remember Uncle Ralph as kind and reserved with a great sense of humor.  I can still hear his laugh even after all these years without him.

I was told by grandma that when he was young he contacted TB and was in a sanitarium for a while.  He had a hard time keeping jobs until he got a job at R. R. Donnelly in Chicago working the night shift.  The night shift was what he needed.  Apparently, he was not a morning person and the night shift worked for him.  For as long as I knew Uncle Ralph he worked at Donnelly.

Uncle Ralph married for the first time to Helen Treppa when he was forty six years old.[2]  He and his wife (Aunt Helen) would come to my Grandmother’s house for holidays and some Sundays in between the holidays.  Sometimes they would come to my parent’s house too.  I always liked going to their house in Chicago.  Sometimes we would just decide at the last moment to go visit Uncle Ralph and Aunt Helen.  We would go there unexpected and always got a warm welcome.  Aunt Helen would put out a spread of lunch meats and breads.  It always amazed me that she had all this food on hand.  It never failed they had plenty of food for unexpected company.

We would sit around the kitchen table and there was always great conversation.  Even though I was young, I loved to listen to the adults talk.  I always found it interesting.  Of course I always enjoyed the food too.  Their house was very warm and welcoming.  Aunt Helen’s sister, Martha (Marty) lived with them.  I loved Aunt Helen and Marty as well as Uncle Ralph.  Because Ralph and Helen married so late in life, they never had any children.

My mother loved her Uncle Ralph very much and after he passed away, she would say that he was her guardian angel looking after her.

Uncle Ralph passed away on 5 January 1964 from a stroke[3] and was buried on 7 January 1964 in the Elmwood Cemetery in River Grove, Cook County, Illinois[4]

If he knew I was writing about him, I can hear him say, “Oh, for the love of Mike.”

Copyright©2016 Gail Grunst

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[1] Registration State: Illinois; Registration County:  Cook; Roll 1613573; Draft board: 53

Ancestry.com. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918. {database on-line}.  Provo, UT, USA; Ancestry.com  Operation  Inc, 2005.  Original Data:  United States, Selective Service System World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cares, 1917-1918.  Washington,  D. C. :  National Archives and Record  Administration.  M1509, 4,582 rolls.  Imaged from Family  History  Library Microfilm.

[2] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois Marriage Index, 1930-1960 [database on-line].  Provo, Ut, USA: Ancestry.ocm  Operations Inc, 2008.  Original data:  Cook County Clerk, comp. Cook County Clerk Genealogy Records.  Cook County Clerk’s office, Chicago, IL: Cook County Clerk, 2008.

[3] From  his sister Helen Bowers Kaiser’s datebook.

[4] Ancestry.com U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600’s – Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc., 2012.  Original data: Find A Grave. Find A Grave.  http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi.

Born in the Winter: Anna Schmerling

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks  theme is winter.  I am about a week behind in posting so the winter theme is actually last weeks.  Anna is my husband’s grandmother who died long before he was born.  Unfortunately, there are no family stories about Anna, and I ran into a dead end in researching her life before her marriage to Albert.  Here is Anna Schmerling’s short biography.

In the winter of 1864 Anna Schmerling was born in Germany on 28th of December.[1]  She came to the United States in 1872 at only 8 years old.[2]  She married Albert Grunst in Chicago, Cook, Illinois on 2 October 1886.[3]  Albert and Anna had seven children, Albert Jr., [4] [5] Emma, [6] Theodore, [7] Walter, [8] [9] Lillian, [10] [11] Alma, [12] [13] and Elmer [14] all born in Illinois. [15] [16] Albert and Anna resided in Chicago [17] and sometime between 1902 [18] and 1910 moved to Cicero, Illinois. [19]  Albert worked as laborer for a lumber company, [20]  and Anna kept house and raised the children. [21]  Only five of the seven children grew to adulthood. [22] [23]  Emma and Theodore died young. [24] It is interesting to note that Anna’s son Elmer was born on her 37th birthday 28 December 1901. [25] Anna lived a quiet life with Albert and her family until her death on 22 April 1926 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Chicago, Cook, Illinois from an intestinal obstruction on which surgery was performed. [26]  She is buried at Bethania Cemetery in Justice, Illinois. [27]

Copyright © 2018 Gail Grunst

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[1] State of Illinois, Cook County, Chicago, Standard Certificate of Death, Department of Public Health, Division of Vital Statistics, Registered No 13052.

[2] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information: 1900 United States Federal Census, Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com Operations Inc., 2004Provo, UT, USA.

[3] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Marriages Index, 1871-1920 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:“Illinois, Cook County Marriages, 1871–1920.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2010. Illinois Department of Public Health records. “Marriage Records, 1871–present.” Division of Vital Records, Springfield, Illinois.

[4] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[5] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[6] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[7] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[8] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[9] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[10] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[11] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[12] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011. Original data:  “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[13] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[14] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 19B; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.

[15] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256,  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[16] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 19B; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.

[17]Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256. Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[18] Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

[19] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 19B; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.

[20] Ibid.

[21] Ibid.

[22] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 19B; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.

[23] Year: 1920; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T625_359; Page: 6A; Enumeration District: 54.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. Images reproduced by FamilySearch.

[24] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Roll: 256; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

[25] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 19B; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.

[26] State of Illinois, Cook County, Chicago, Standard Certificate of Death, Department of Public Health, Division of Vital Statistics, Registered No 13052.

[27] U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current, Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012, Provo, UT, USA.

Walter Grunst: Next to Last

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks theme this week is Next to Last
“There are several ways you could approach this theme. Who was the next-to-last ancestor you found? If you print out an ancestor chart, who is the next-to-last person listed? Pick an ancestral family and write about the next-to-last child. Since November is the next-to-last month, maybe feature an ancestor born in November.

Black-Hawk (2)

Blackhawk Insignia of the 86 Division WWI

I am writing this week about my husbands uncle, Walter Grunst, who was the next-to-last child born in his family and was also born in the next-to-last month (November).

Walter Frederick Grunst was born on 14 November 1895 to Albert Grunst and Anna Schmerling in Chicago, Cook, Illinois.[1]  Walter joined his siblings Alma, Albert, and Lillian at home in Chicago, Illinois.[2]  In 1901 a fifth sibling, Elmer, would join the family.[3]  Sometime between 1900 and 1910 the family moved to Cicero, Illinois where his father, Albert worked as a laborer, and Anna kept house and raised the children.[4]   Walter worked for the Ideal Movie Theater as a motion picture operator around 1916-17.[5]  He joined the United States Army during WWI and served in Company A — 311th Engineers — 86th Division.[6]  “The Eighty-Sixth Division was organized in August 1917 at Camp Grant, Illinois, from drafted men of Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota. The first unit arrived in France on September 21, 1918; the last on October 9, 1918.”[7]  Walter left for France on 9 September 1918 aboard the “Empress of Asia” from the Port of New York.[8]  It is very likely he was in the first unit that arrived in France on the 21st

The 86th was also known as the “Blackhawk Division” because the area of Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota was formerly the territory inhabited by Chief Black Hawk and his tribe.  The division insignia consists of a small red shield with the initials “B” and “H” in black superimposed upon a design of a Blackhawk which, in turn, is superimposed upon a red shield. The insignia is a tribute to the pioneers of this sector, and in recognition of their prowess in battles with the Indians. The bird symbolizes keenness, cunning, and tenacity.[9]

 “The division was sent to the vicinity of Bordeaux (Gironde) and headquarters were established in St. Andre de Cubzac.”[10]  “The Eighty Sixth at last was to get it’s chance at the front.  Moving out at dawn on November 8, the division was to go to Le Mans.  From there, the Eighty Sixth was to have proceeded to the Lorraine front on November 14th in the company of five other American divisions and thirty French divisions.  The Black Hawks were to have participated in what the supreme war council had planned as the Allies mightiest endeavor of the war – capture of the Metz, rolling back the German Army, invasion of Germany, the final crushing blow! But to the Blackhawks on November 11 came the news of the signing of the armistice, the event which immediately began to be celebrated by the world generally, with exception of the Blackhawks.  For them the curtain had been rung down just as they were about to enter the big show.”[11]

“With the exception of the 311th Engineers and the 311th Engineer Supply Trains, which remained in the vicinity of Bordeaux, practically all remaining Black Hawks units returned to the United States as organizations soon after breaking up the Eighty Six Division. The arrivals home were as follows:

333rd Field Artillery – Siboney – January 3rd

311th Trench Mortar Battery –Georgia – January 8th * See Note

311th Sanitary Train – Wilhelmina – January 19th

311th Field Signal Battalion – Nebraska – January 29th

311th Ammunition Train – Zeelandia – January 29th

331st Field Artillery – Duca D’Aosta – February 5th

332nd Field Artillery – Antigone – February 15th

The last three Black Hawk outfits to return were the 311th Engineers and 311th Engineer Trains, which arrived in June. The 311th supply train arrived in July.”[12]

“Upon their arrival in Chicago on their way back to Camp Grant to be mustered out, each of the Black Hawk units received a rousing welcome home, a tribute as genuine and whole-hearted just as if the armistice had not halted the Eighty Sixth just as it was preparing to show it’s mettle on the field of battle.”[13]

Walter left France on June 26th aboard the Mount Vernon from Brest France and arrived at Camp Merritt, New Jersey on July 5, 1919.[14] 

After the war, Walter lived in Cicero, Illinois with his parents and worked as a laborer in a Piano Factory.[15]  His mother died in 1926[16] and by 1930 his father is living in a home for the aged.[17] I cannot find Walter on the 1930 or 1940 census, however in 1942 his WWII draft card states he lives in Chicago, drives a truck and does hauling between Chicago and Milwaukee.[18]   I can find no evidence that Walter ever married or had children.  In fact, on his WWII draft card he lists the OK Motor Service as the person who will always know his address[19].  I find this sad, it appears he was not close to his brothers or sisters; therefore we have no pictures or stories of Walter.  My husband remembers seeing his uncle once when he came by their house with his truck.  Walter died on 13 March 1949[20] and is buried Bethania Cemetery in Justice, Cook County, Illinois.[21] 

*Note:  My grandfather, George Manfroid, was in 311th Mortar Trench Battery.  George Manfroid’s and Walter Grunst’s names appear in the book Official History of the 86th Division.

Copyright © 2018 Gail Grunst

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[1] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Birth Certificates Index, 1871-1922 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011. Original data: “Illinois, Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2009. Illinois. Cook County Birth Certificates, 1878–1922. Illinois Department of Public Health. Division of Vital Records, Springfield.

[2] Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.  Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.

[3] Year: 1910; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_238; Page: 20A; Enumeration District: 1539; FHL microfilm: 1374251.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.

[4] Ibid.

[5] “United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:K681-GPJ : 13 March 2018), Walter Grunst, 1917-1918; citing Cook County no 6, Illinois, United States, NARA microfilm publication M1509 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,613,142.

[6] The National Archives at College Park; College Park, Maryland; Record Group Title: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774-1985; Record Group Number: 92; Roll or Box Number: 431.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016.

[7] Historical Branch, War Division, General Staff, 1921 (Brief History of Divisions, US Army 1917 – 1918)

[8] The National Archives at College Park; College Park, Maryland; Record Group Title: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774-1985; Record Group Number: 92; Roll or Box Number: 431.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016.

[9] From website: 86th Infantry division https://history.army.mil/documents/ETO-OB/86ID-ETO.htm

[10] Historical Branch, War Division, General Staff, 1921 (Brief History of Divisions, US Army 1917 – 1918)

[11] Chicago, States Publication Society (Official History of the 86th Division, 1921) Pages 65 & 66

[12] Ibid

[13] Ibid.

[14] The National Archives at College Park; College Park, Maryland; Record Group Title: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774-1985; Record Group Number: 92; Roll or Box Number: 213. Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016.

[15] Year: 1920; Census Place: Cicero, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T625_359; Page: 6A; Enumeration District: 54.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. Images reproduced by FamilySearch.  Original data: Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920. (NARA microfilm publication T625, 2076 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA. Note: Enumeration Districts 819-839 are on roll 323 (Chicago City).

[16] Ancestry.com. Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths Index, 1916-1947 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.  Original data:”Illinois Deaths and Stillbirths, 1916–1947.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2010. Index entries derived from digital copies of original records.

[17] Year: 1930; Census Place: Wheeling, Cook, Illinois; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 2105; FHL microfilm: 2340234.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2002.Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Fifteenth Census of the United States, 1930. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1930. T626, 2,667 rolls.

[18] The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; World War II Draft Cards (Fourth Registration), for The State of Illinois; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System, 1926-1975; Record Group Number: 147; Series Number: M2097.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.

[19] Ibid.

[20] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois Death Index, 1908-1988 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008.  Original data: Cook County Clerk. Cook County Clerk Genealogy Records. Cook County Clerk’s Office, Chicago, IL: Cook County Clerk, 2008.

[21] Ancestry.com. U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.  Original data: Find A Grave. Find A Grave. http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi.

 

Last Born

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Elmer Grunst

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks  topic this week is youngest.  

Elmer Grunst was the youngest of seven children born to Albert Grunst and Anna Schmerling.  Elmer was born on 28 December 1901 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois[i] and joined his siblings Alma, Albert, Walter, and Lillian at home.[ii]  Two siblings Emma and Theodore died in infancy.[iii] Elmer was baptized on 19 January 1902 at St. Markus Lutheran Church in Chicago.[iv]  His sponsors were Gustav Elend, Louis Schulz, and Augusta Genz.[v]  Sometime during 1902 they moved to Cicero, Illinois[vi] where Elmer grew up and completed two years of high school.[vii]  Elmer was too young to for WWI and too old for WWII.  He never entered the military, however all of his sons served.  Two sons served during WWII.  One was stationed in the Pacific and the other one in Africa.[viii]  After high school he went to work for the Western Electric Company Hawthorne works at Cicero Avenue and 22nd street as a draftsman where he worked his way up to supervisor, and retired from there in 1963.[ix]  In later years, he worked for the Western Electric in downtown Chicago at the Merchandise Mart and rode the train everyday from Berwyn to Chicago.[x]  Elmer belonged to the reserve police force in Berwyn, Illinois.[xi]

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Elmer at target practice for the Reserve Police of Berwyn, Illinois

In 1920 he married Alice Gorski also from Cicero, Cook, Illinois.[xii]  They had five children, Elmer Jr. born in 1921, Harry in 1922, Dorothy in 1923, Lester in 1935, and Bruce in 1941.  Elmer and Alice moved to a typical Berwyn bungalow at 3708 Kenilworth Ave, Berwyn, Cook, Illinois around 1928.  The homes were built on narrow 30’ wide lots with a narrow gangway between them.  Garages were on the alley in back.  Here they raised their five children and lived in that house until their deaths.[xiii]

Elmer liked baseball and was a devout White Sox fan.  He liked sitting on his front porch in the summer and listening to the White Sox games on the radio. He taught his sons to play baseball concentrating mainly on pitching.  He also liked to golf and bowl and was good at both sports.  Elmer liked to have his beer and a shot of whiskey everyday.  He was also fond of bakery goods which he enjoyed for breakfast.[xiv] 

The family enjoyed trips to Paw Paw, Michigan where their friends had a cottage.  Elmer and Alice also took trips to Texas, California, and Florida.  Elmer liked to take day drives and would take his youngest son with him.  It was just the two of them on rode for a day of adventure.[xv] Unfortunately, Elmer was a smoker and died of Lung Cancer on 17 March 1965 at 63 years, 2 months and 17 days.  He looked forward to retirement unfortunately, he only lived a little over a year after he retired at age 62 and some of that time was spent sick with the Cancer.  His son said that it hard for him to see his father frail, sick, and in pain.  He had always been a big, strong man who was never sick.   Alice died many years later on 9 February 1981.

Copyright © 2018 Gail Grunst

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[i] State of Illinois, Cook County, Chicago, Certificate of Birth, Registration District No. 3104, date of birth 28 December 1901.

[ii]Year: 1900; Census Place: Chicago Ward 10, Cook, Illinois; Page: 17; Enumeration District: 0288; FHL microfilm: 1240256.  Source Information:  Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.  Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.

[iii] Ibid.

[iv] Illinois, Chicago, Baptism Certificate for Elmer Grunst, Date of birth 28 December 1901, Date of Baptism 19 January 1902

[v] Ibid.

[vi] Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

[vii] Year: 1940; Census Place: Berwyn, Cook, Illinois; Roll: m-t0627-00772; Page: 14A; Enumeration District: 16-5. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1940. T627, 4,643 rolls.

[viii] Personal knowledge from Bruce Grunst (son of Elmer Grunst) as told to Gail Grunst author of this biography.

[ix] Ibid.

[x] Ibid.

[xi] Ibid.

[xii] Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois Marriage Indexes, 1912-1942 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

[xiii] Personal knowledge from Bruce Grunst (son of Elmer Grunst) as told to Gail Grunst author of this biography.

[xiv] Ibid.

[xv] Ibid.