Monday, May 11, 2015

Tombstone Tuesday - Adelbert Boegel

Full view of the Kleinmann/Boegel marker in Holy Cross

I previously shared the funeral card I had for Adelbert Boegel and now thanks to a FindAGrave contributor I can share his tombstone!

So since I don't have much on Adelbert aside from his funeral card and what was in an old handwritten family tree I was given, I decided to do some research for this post...Adelbert can be found with his parents, Raymond and Katherine in the 1920, 1930 and 1940 census. He was single in all of those records and with spelling variations on his name (1920 - Edeberd, 1930 - Adelbert, 1940 - Adalbert). According to both the SSDI and the Wisconsin Death Index he died in Richfield, Washington County, Wisconsin although Holy Cross is in Milwaukee. I can find him in multiple U.S. City Directory listing, but only the one in 1953 list his spouse. She is another Catherine! Most have him listed as living in Fond du Lac and then later in Richfield.

Close-up of the names on the Kleinmann/Boegel marker

Catherine isn't on his tombstone though, but a Kenneth G. who died in 1980 is as is a Janet who died in 1948. Janet only has "1948" on the tombstone. That this is the year she died is my assumption because if it was for someone that was born in 1948 and hadn't passed yet there would be space for an update in the future and there isn't. So who are Janet and Kenneth G? My guess is that they are his and Catherine's children. Why do they share a tombstone with the Kleinmanns? Perhaps Catherine's maiden name was Kleinmann. The other side of the tombstone (which is not shown)  has Roland (1899-1960), Barbara (1902-1994), and Kenneth (1924-1935). Perhaps Adelbert and Catherine named their son after a brother of hers that died young? I don't know for sure, but I have Adelbert's obituary on my research calendar and I hope to be able to pull his obituary the next time I get back to Wisconsin.

Close-up names on the Kleinmann marker (reverse of Kleinmann/Boegel)

Kenneth is the son of Roland and Barbara as I can see by looking in the 1930 US Census and there was another son, Gerald/Gerold. Catherine wasn't born yet. In the 1940 Census I can see that Kenneth is no longer listed, which I would expect, but Catherine isn't there. Gerald is though so it's the same couple. Where is Catherine? Is my assumption that Roland and Barbara being her parents wrong? Is one of them her brother or sister and Kenneth was a nephew that they named a child after? I can't confirm or disprove that yet. I can easily find Roland in the 1900 through 1920 census with his parents, but there's no Catherine in there. Perhaps Barbara was her sister.

Now let's get crazier. I can't find anything for the death of Adelbert's wife, Catherine Boegel nee WhoKnowsWhat. In a public family tree I see that Adelbert is married to a Barbara that died in 1994...but that would be the Barbara on the tombstone...who I found in the census married to Roland! My head hurts. According to this public tree Barbara and Roland were married and then Barbara married Adelbert after he died. So this would be second marriages for the both of them.

I'd like to take this time to point out that you should not just take information from someone else's tree and treat it as true. I've said this before, but I'm going to say it again because it's that important...Public Family Trees are a great way to guide you down the right path, but you need to then follow up with your own research because they're also a great way to be guided down the wrong path! I put Barbara on my research calendar to pull an obituary for as well. I still need to figure out what happened to Catherine, Janet, and Kenneth G! Barbara is mentioned in the obituary for Adelbert's brother, Raymond, as his wife. It may be quite difficult to find any information on Catherine if she isn't in Adelbert's obituary.

As I continue on (and just to be more confusing) Kenneth G. wasn't the son of Adelbert and Catherine. I couldn't find a Kenneth G Boegel in the SSDI with the year range of 1961-1980, but I did find a Kenneth G. Kleinmann born on 06JUL1961 and died on 31OCT1980. Time to pull another obituary because I need to see more about this Kenneth. He may not even be the child of Barbara and Roland. He was born after Roland's death and too long after his death for it to be Roland's...not to mention Barbara was a little too old to be having children at 60-something. Perhaps it was a grandchild. Who knows. I certainly don't.

So one little post about sharing a Boegel tombstone opened up a lot more questions than I ever expected to get. It seems that Adelbert is the only Boegel really on that tombstone. Stay tuned until I can get those obituaries pulled!

(A very big thank you to FindAGrave contributor Phillip #46971271 for permission to share the photos he took of the Kleinmann/Boegel tombstone in Holy Cross Cemetery and Mausoleum. They may be "just a rock with letters on them," but they mean so much. Thank you!)