#52ancestors No. 13 – different spelling all over the place!


Challenge for week 13 (I am way behind again ;)) was “DIFFERENT”.

I think we all have this name in our family tree which gets a different spelling on every document. In my family tree I have more than just one of those.

On of the names is OHRT. That is the first spelling I saw and it is also how I see the name being spelled today.

But I also have ORT, ORTH, OORT, OHRTH in my records.

One of the OHRTs in my family is my paternal great grandmother Emma Catharina OHRT. She was born in Schlutup a little fisherman’s village in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany on June 6, 1877. Today, Schlutup belongs to Lübeck, the city my family still lives in. Emma Ohrt blog

This picture shows her at an unknown age. When I made contact to a cousin of my Dad’s I saw it hanging on the wall in the living room and immediately asked if I could take a photo of it. What really hit me from the first moment was the resemblance I see there to her daughter, my grandmother Margarethe Katharina Emma SCHMIDT. It was like looking into her face. I mean, I just knew my grandmother at “this” age.

The 1880 census of Lübeck shows her living with her parents, two older sisters and a younger brother in Schlutup. Emma’s entry is the second last.

Emma OHrt VZ 1880 blog

I still have quite a few uncertainties about her. I don’t have the exact date when she married my great grandfather Carl August Joachim SCHMIDT and I am also missing birthdates for her two oldest children. What I know is that she and Carl had 6 children, of which my grandma was the youngest.

Great Grandma Emma Catharina Schmidt née Ohrt and children

Great Grandma Emma Catharina Schmidt née Ohrt and children

  • Gertrud * unknown
  • Luise * unknown
  • Else * 1901
  • Wilhelm Hermann Heinrich Karl (called Kalli) * 1904
  • Albert Paul Wilhelm (called Willi) * 1911
  • Margarethe Katharina Emma (called Grete) * 1912

There is a family rumour that there have been two more children who died at a very young age, but I couldn’t verify that rumour either yet.

Emma died on March 24, 1949 in Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany

#52ancestors No. 12 – same year, different places

52ancestors-2015The challenge of week no. 12 is “Same”. I thought a bit how to approach this motto. At the end I decided to introduce you to two women who were born in the same year: 1786

My fourth great grandmother Catharina Dorothea DAEHN, born 1786. I cannot yet prove exactly when. I only have her age from her death entry.

On November 3, 1811 she married the day laborer Franz Joachim Hinrich Christian SCHAPER in Mustin, grandduchy of Sachsen-Lauenburg (today on the territory of Schleswig-Holstein), Germany. The couple had seven children I know of:

  1. Hans Joachim Hinrich 1812-1812
  2. Johann Joachim Heinrich 1814
  3. Anna Catharina Elisabeth 1816
  4. Franz Joachim Hinrich 1818
  5. Anna Catharina Dorothea 1820-1846
  6. Johann Jacob Hinrich 1823-1882
  7. Johann Heinrich Friedrich 1826-1854

Following a stroke, Catharina died on April 15, 1847 in Mustin and got laid to rest on the church cemetary on April 19, 1847

And then there is my 3rd great grandaunt Kathrin Magdalena ORTH, of whom I don’t know that much. She was born on January 11, 1786 in Mönkhagen, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany as fifth of eight children into the marriage of the day laborer Hans Hinrich Christopher OHRT (yes, the spelling is different from entry to entry) and Ann Malen JÄGERS.

She received her christening on January 15, 1786 in Zarpen, the main village of the parish.

And that is the last trace I have of her.

#52 ancestors No. 11 – moving around, back and forth

52ancestors-2015It’s my eleventh week in the 52 Ancestors Challenge of Amy Crow over at “No Story too small”.

And this week, I won’t concentrate on one of my ancestors. I sat down yesterday and tried to reconcile how my family and ended up in Lübeck, where most of it still lives.

The result is the following mindmap. The red line is my paternal one, showing my Dad’s family and the blue line is my Mom’s.

Actually, I always thought that my father’s family stayed mostly where it was, in my main parish of Diedrichshagen, Mecklenburg, Germany. But as you can see, my father’s family moved around a lot. It’s just that the areas they moved to and from are so much easier to research than my mother’s line.And of course it helped, that still today, my family lives close.

Coming from East Prussia (today’s Poland and Russia), it is rather complicated to obtain documents for my mom’s family.

The years given in the mindmap are the years the family moved from one place to the next. And the pictures are the family members moving.


Did you ever do a map like this?

#52ancestors No. 10 – lots and lots of snow

I have a lot of catching up to do with the 52 ancestors challenge. But finally my cast is gone and I can type again. I tried with this heavy thing on, but it wasn’t a pleasure – let me tell you that much ;)

Which means, I have a couple of weeks to deliver.. will do my very best in the next couple of days.


themes-2015-03The challenge for week 10 was “Stormy Weathers”. And when I think about Stormy Weathers I think about the heaviest snow storm in my home area back in winter 1978/1979. I remember that one, because we couldn’t use the boardwalk on our way to school.. well, I had still to take the left turn to the Kindergarten .. but we had to walk on the street. The snow was piled higher than I was tall ;) And that was one of the better aspects of the snow storm.. but hey, I was five years old, I didn’t care about lost electricity or else.

Have a look at some pictures here

And when I have a look at the year 1979 in my family tree, we meet Emmi Martha Frieda Leppin.

Emmi was born on March 7, 1901 in Groß Pravtshagen, Grandduchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Germany as the second of five children.

birth certificate Emmi Leppin

birth certificate Emmi Leppin


And as you can see on her birth certificate above, the registrar noted there that she married 1936 in Grevesmühlen, Mecklenburg, Germany  and died 1979, the year of the huge snow storm, also in Grevesmühlen, Mecklenburg, East Germany. He or she even noted the numbers of the respective certificates as a source. Oh, how I wish more people would do that.


#52ancestors 9 Close to home – reaching Lübeck, Germany

I have a bit of catching up to do with the 52 ancestors challenge from Amy Crow at No Story Too Small.

Travelling and a broken wrist after the first 20 minutes this year on cross country skis don’t help :)

This week’s theme is “Close to home”. The first question to be answered there is “which one”? My original home is Lübeck in Schleswig-Holstein Germany. Fort Worth, Texas, USA will always be part of my home, too. I live in Frankfurt, Germany for 13 years now.. definetly home.

But when I speak of back home it is always Lübeck, Germany. In my Dad’s maternal SCHMIDT line (both my paternal grandparents were SCHMIDTS) it is the generation of my greatgrandparents who came from Tüschenbek in the neighbour grandduchy of Lauenburg into the free city of Lübeck. Have a look at the map below. It is really close but it was a bit different 100 years ago.


Let’s take Johann Heinrich Christian SCHMIDT, my first cousin 3x removed as an example. He was born as a lauenburg citizen on December 7, 1868 on Tüschenbek estate, grandduchy of Lauenburg as second son of Johann Joachim Heinrich SCHMIDT and his wife Anna Maria Elisabeth née KORFF. He received his christening eight days later on December 15, 1868 in Groß Grönau the main village of the parish, the estate belongs to.

The local military draft registration lists show him living and working on the estate as a stableman in 1888.

An then 1912 came the big day. On May 25, 1912 he was officially naturalized:

naturalization record

naturalization record

The record shows him being married to a woman née RÖNNPAGE and if I interprete it correctly, he had one daughter and one son. But I didn’t find his wedding record or any children for him yet.

StepMap Schleswig-Holstein