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Weber & Landerfelt Family Tree Project Script

"We sometimes see a change of expression in our companion, and say, his father, or his mother, comes to the windows of his eyes, and sometimes a remote relative. In different hours, a man represents each of several of his ancestors, as if there were seven or eight of us rolled up in each man's skin, - seven or eight at least, and they constitute the variety of notes for that new piece of music which life is."

 

Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Conduct of Life, Section 1 - "Fate"  (1860)



DNA Tree

Did you know that one of our Webers fell at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania during the Civil War? Well, that is a fact. It is a sad story of an immigrant boy named Johann Weber who arrived in America with his family, became John Weber, and died fighting for his new land as part of the Ohio Volunteer Infantry, 107th Regiment, Company G. This regiment was called the "German Regiment" or the "German 107th" and Company G was formed primarily of young men of German ancestry from Lorain Co., Ohio where our Webers resided after arriving in America. John was born May 15, 1840 in Gevenich, Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany, immigrated to America in 1853, and died on the first day of battle at Gettysburg, July 1, 1863. All-in-all, the regiment lost 440 of its roughly 550 man regiment in those three days of fighting. Many of our ancestors also proudly served in the Revolutionary War and every war to date.

I enjoy genealogical research and have compiled a database of over 70,000 names, all related in some fashion. My oldest ancestral line goes back to the mid-1200s. I refer to the multi-year effort to compile this information, the repository of the data itself, its many reports, files, photographs, and life stories as The Weber & Landerfelt Family Tree Project. The Weber & Landerfelt Family Tree Project is posted on Rootsweb for all to see and use. This ongoing effort began a few years ago when my oldest son, Matthew, came home from school one day with an assignment to tell the story of one of his ancestors who came to America. To be honest, I couldn't tell him the name and date of anyone in our lineage who "came over", although I knew roughly how many generations ago our Webers left Germany. Now I get many inquiries and contacts from long lost "cousins" who are also researching their own family histories and have stumbled across my online data.

Below are links to my data in a few different formats or collections. Keep in mind that for privacy reasons, I post living (and potentially living) individuals as "Living", but I have all the names in my database. If you visit the family trees provided in the pedigree links below, note that you can scroll further back to previous generations by using the arrows to the right hand side of the linked screens. Who knows, maybe you will see some names of your ancestors amongst the many branches of these trees, even if you are a casual visitor who happened to find this site. Whom might you find there? Anyone. There are sports greats, university founders, ministers, brewers, farmers, captains of industry, a notable gangster, the last governor of the Lousiana Territory, a boxer, a Civil War General, a lord or two, soldiers, veterans, and even a fellow, Albert Noe, who listed his occupation as "Fiddler at hoedown" on one census record.  The Bondurants upon whom the novel "The Wettest County in the World" and the movie "Lawless" were based are in there as well.  My wife even has one direct ancestor who was a Baron in Germany.  Certainly the most notable names you will find are Presidents Abraham Lincoln, John Adams, and John Quincy Adams, and notable historical figures such as Paul Revere, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, William Cullen Bryant, Daniel Boone, and King Henry VIII.  You will also find actors Tom Hanks, George Clooney, Rosemary Clooney, Orson Welles, and Marilyn Monroe.  Musicians and performers Billy Ray Cyrus and his daughter Miley Cyrus are there too.  There is also the sports legend Joe DiMaggio.  You will even find the great Shawnee Indian chief, Cornstalk.  Interestingly, both my wife and I tie separately via a meandering path by marriage to Chief Cornstalk or more directly to his son Elinipsico and his white captive wife, Elizabeth See, who was captured by the Shawnees on July 14, 1763 near Greenbier, VA at age nine and held until 1772 when she was returned for ransom.  There is even one second-cousin of mine currently living in Florida who is an author of romantic suspense novels.

All-in-all, the silent, binary inhabitants of the digital neighborhoods of The Weber & Landerfelt Family Tree Project represent the everyday working man. People like you and me, people who go to work every day, providing for their families, experiencing the highs and lows, seeing the view from the peaks and the troughs, people who experience love and loss, all the while trying to make things better for those they would ultimately leave behind.

In researching various family lines and individuals, I run across people who have died in unusual ways. Most, of course, die due to old age and other natural causes, but there are some unusual deaths noted in the record. One fellow died while watching a bicycle race at Franklin Park, Columbus, Franklin Co., Ohio. This is a park I had been to many times while growing up and is the park where one of my sisters was married. This fellow died when one of the cyclists careened off the path and plowed into him. One fellow boarded a river steamer, vanished during the night, and was never found again. One woman was hit in the neck with a mop handle. Some shot themselves, some were shot. Some died during indian attacks, one when a stove exploded, many died in wars, one fell through an ice covered creek, and one little toddler died after drinking kerosene. The saddest I think was the loss of several brothers and sisters in West Virginia who died on their way home from a church service by drowning crossing a waterway on a wooden raft.

Another sad one is the death of my great great Aunt Luella (Knopp) Parsons who was struck by a car after leaving the cemetery where she had just placed flowers on relatives' graves. She was on her way to Ripley, WV with one of her sons to meet another son who lived out-of-state and whom she had not seen for years. He was Dr. Edgar A. Parsons and was coming to see her from Chicago. They were to meet in Ripley. When she did not meet him, he was seen driving around looking for her and was told by people who knew him and his mother that she had just been struck by a car. He arrived just after the accident, but still too late. Interestingly, the driver of the vehicle which killed Luella Parsons was Woodrow Parsons. I have a Woodrow Parsons in my database who is distantly related to Luella, but I have not proved that it is the same Woodrow Parsons who hit and killed her. If it is the same Woodrow Parsons, I doubt she would have known that she was killed by a third-cousin of her husband.

One death full of drama and intrigue is the death of Mary R. (McGrew) Starr, my Uncle Hubert McGrew's aunt. She was murdered by her husband Frederick Ellsworth Starr on July 2, 1919. He had been drinking, became abusive, and when the sheriff came for him he was hiding out. He had been hiding out for hours waiting for the sheriff to arrive and had said he was going to kill the sheriff. Mary told the sheriff that she would go and talk to him and get him to come out. The sheriff advised her against doing that, but let her go anyway. As she approached, Fred shot her with a single-shot 12 gauge shotgun. The shot entered her body at an angle, passing from the right side to the left side and through her heart. She died instantly. Fred was sentenced to fifteen years at the Moundsville State Prison, but was released early. Fred was also suspected of killing his first wife, but it was never proven.

One of the things that has touched me the most is the high infant mortality rate so evident in even a cursory review of the census and death records. How terribly sad and crushing to lose three or four children within weeks to whooping cough, influenza, or some other ailment easily treated today. How does a parent get over that kind of loss? Maybe they don't; I know that such a devastating loss would haunt even my waking hours for the rest of my life.

I have also found cause to reflect on major events in our nation's history when I run across records that confirm that brothers actually did serve on opposing sides of the Civil War, especially in states that were ripped in half by the ideology of the war, such as Virginia when the western 40 counties sided with the Union to form West Virginia where so many of my ancestors resided in Jackson, Wood, and Wirt counties.

One of the most personally interesting observations in my research is the spread of humanity westward on the North American continent.  So many of the families begin in places like Maryland, New Jersey, or Virginia, and in a generation or two their offspring have moved to the "frontier" - distant, wooded wild places like Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, and then their offspring are found as established and productive citizens further west in Nebraska, Colorado, or California. I don't know why I find tracking famlies that have moved in that way across the United States, but I do. Maybe because I did it; I don't know. I also find it interesting to see how last names change over time and geography. One fairly recent personal example is my grandmother Helen Creaglow's lineage. Ancesestors and descendants of this line appear as Kreglow, Creaglow, Creiglow, and Creglow as their legal name. In the photos below, you will find a picture of my great grandfather, William Allen "Creaglow", seated next to, you got it, his brother Clark "Creiglow" or "Creglow". By the way, Clark was one of those fellows who moved west. He was born in Fairfield Co., Ohio and moved to Linn Co., Iowa in 1882.

Along the way, I have been able to clear the clouds away from foggy family oral stories and traditions. When did the Webers come to America? Where did they come from? Who was my dad's first wife who died, along with her newborn male son, after giving birth? Where did she come from? Did some "cousin" of ours really fall through the ice and drown at Alum Creek, Columbus, Franklin Co., Ohio? When, who? Who was "Muzzy"? Was Great Aunt Jessie married once before she married Great Uncle Whitey? Did she have a child? What became of that child? Did Great Grandfather William Creaglow actually own a candy store and kill a robber? Did he own a saloon? Was he a Deputy Sheriff? What was Great Grandmother Dora's real name? Why was she known as "Dora"? Was there a Noe family in our lineage after which Noe-Bixby Road in Columbus, Franklin Co., Ohio is named? Is Cathy the Dutch girl she always thought she was or is she really of German origin? These are just some of the questions that have all been answered.  Still unanswered is a family recollection of an infant who died by accidentally being smothered while sleeping with one of his or her parents.  I've not been able to crack that family mystery yet.

Genealogical research is a work that is never really complete. I continue to add to the extended family. Often, I receive information that causes me to revise or correct my data. These links present the most current information I have.

All Individuals
Alphabetical Index to Complete Database of Names



The Webers
The Weber surname is, of course, of German origin and is a very common German name ranking high in the top 50 of the most common German surnames. Interestingly, the most common German last names are all original trade or occupational names, or names originating from the trade the individual practiced. Weber, which means "weaver" comes in as the sixth most common German surname behind (first to fifth ranked) Mueller ("miller"), Schmidt ("smith", as in blacksmith, silversmith, etc.), Schneider ("tailor"), Fischer ("fisher"), and Meyer ("dairyman"). So, my oldest known direct Weber ancestor, Servatius Weber, my 5X great grandfather who was born about 1744 and died 12/11/1796 and who worked at a mill in Gevenich, Germany, almost certainly had ancestors of his own who were weavers or textile workers.

Descendents of Servatius Weber, the Oldest Weber (10 Generations)

Mike's Pedigree - a Family Tree of Direct Ancestors

Mike's Ahnentafel - an Ordered Listing of Ancesters by Generation



The Landerfelts
The Landerfelt surname is also of German origin, but is much more unique than is the Weber surname. The Landerfelt surname is the anglicized name of the original German "Landefeld" and is a habitational or locational name, which means that it is derived from a location, most likely one where or near the original named family lived or came from. Landefeld is a town in Hessen, Germany and is the location near where Heinrich Landefeld originated.

Descendents of Henry Landerfelt (Heinrich Landefeld), the Oldest Landerfelt (8 Generations)

Cathy's Pedigree - a Family Tree of Direct Ancestors

Cathy's Ahnentafel - an Ordered Listing of Ancesters by Generation


I have also acquired a number of historical family photos from both sides of our family, the Webers and the Landerfelts. Here are just some of those great pictures of many of our ancestors along with a few more current photos. Have fun, take your time, I hope you enjoy my work!

Note that I have linked many of the images below to open to my data on Rootsweb.com. Click on images with borders to learn more about an individual's life and family. You can also right click the images to save a copy for your own use.

Please feel free to contact me at

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Memory Rose Banner
Dad - Richard Lee Weber             
Mom - Betty Arlene Piggott
Mike's Parents - Richard Lee and Betty Arlene (Piggott) Weber - I think about them every day ...


Mom & Dad Wedding Photo
Mike's Dad & Mom on Their Wedding Day


James Leo & Richard Lee Weber          
James Leo Weber
Mike's Father, Richard Lee Weber, as a young boy of about 12 years old along with his Father, James Leo Weber.  Above right,
Mike's Grandfather, James Leo Weber.


Helen Leona (Creaglow) Weber                   
James Leo & Jessie Mae (Creaglow) Brandon
Mike's Grandmother, Helen Leona (Creaglow) Weber; right, Mike's Grandfather James Leo Weber
and Great Aunt Jessie Mae (Creaglow) Brandon.


Matthew J. & Ann Marie (Manning) Weber
The 50 Year Wedding Anniversary
 of Mike's Great Grandparents,
Matthew J. & Anna Marie Jane (Manning) Weber.


Richard Lee and Janes (Grover) Weber
Richard Lee Weber, Jr.
& Jane (Grover) Weber.
I sure miss Dickie.


Piggott Family 1919 or 1920              
Ocie Bell Knopp Piggott
Above left, the Piggott Family after a hard day's work on the family farm. Second from left is
Grandfather Fred Piggott, Great Grandfather James Franklin Piggott, far right.

Above right, Grandma Ocie Bell (Knopp) Piggott.



John Henry and Minnie Mae Williams Knopp          Minie Mae & Betty Piggott
Left, Mike's Great Grandparents John Henry and Minnie Mae (Williams) Knopp.;
right, Minnie Mae and Mike's mother, Betty Piggott.



William A. Creaglow   
William and Clark Creaglow     William A. Creaglow (younger)

Various photos of Mike's Great Grandfather, William Allen Creaglow (seated in the middle picture with his brother Clark).
At the left, he is wearing a uniform of some sort in his younger days (perhaps railroad? He was a Deputy Sheriff later in life.)


William Allen Creaglow in His Saloon
Great Grandfather, William Allen Creaglow (far right) in his saloon
in Columbus, OH.  The gentleman to the left side of the picture is suspected to be
William's father, Carlisle Jackson Creaglow.


Carlisle Jackson Creaglow         Catherine Jane (Tong) Creaglow
Mike's Great Great Grandfather Carlisle Jackson Creaglow
and Great Great Grandmother Catherine Jane (Tong) Creaglow.


Great Great Grandparents Catherine Jane (Tong) & Carlisle Jackson Creaglow
Mike's Great Great Grandparents Catherine Jane (Tong) and Carlisle Jackson Creaglow.

Edwin L. Brandon (Uncle Whitey)
                    Jessie Mae (Creaglow) Brandon
Mike's Great Uncle and Aunt, Edwin Lynn & Jessie Mae (Creaglow) Brandon.


Ephraim Noe 
Rebecca A. (Jaynes) Burchard   William Henderson Williams   Catherine Jane (Tong) Creaglow
Left to right
Mike's GGG Grandfather, Ephraim Noe;
Mike's GGG Grandmother, Rebecca A. (Jaynes) Burchard;
Mike's GG Grandfather, William Henderson Williams - he wore gray in the Civil War!;
and Mike's Great Great Grandmother, Catherine Jane (Tong) Creaglow (seated, with two of her children).


Great Great Great Grandfather, John Finnegan               Anna Maria (Youngclas) Minnich
Mike's Great Great Great Grandfather, John Finnegan (standing in center). Picture is circa 1904.   Click here to read more about this
pioneer family and to see the original picture on the Shelby Chapter of the Richland County, OH Genealogical Society website.
 

A complete listing of those in the picture of family and friends is as follows: Back row (left to right) - Miss Curren, Thomas Finnegan,
Rena Finnegan, John Finnegan, Stella Finnegan, Jack Finnegan, Miss Curren; Front row (left to right) - Florence Finnegan,
Viola Mott / Finnegan, Howard Finnegan, Richard Finnegan, Alice Finnegan.  No name is attributed to my personal favorite in this picture
- the sleepy dog on the porch!

Above right is Mike's Great Great Great Grandmother, Anna Maria (Younglas) Minnich, born October 14, 1814 in Illerich, Rheinland-Pfalz,
Germany; died January 21, 1902 in North Ridgeville, Lorain Co., OH.  Her daughter Gertrude married my Great Great Grandfather,
 John Peter "Peter" Weber. Click here to read about her, her husband's, and children's trek from Germany to Ohio, their early hardships
beginning even before they got off the ship in New York, and their work to raise their children in the new land.


Landerfelt Family
The Landerfelt Family - Cathy standing to the right of her mother, Alice, just above
her brother, Neil, Jr.  At the top is Trisha, and Tammy is sitting on her father's, Neil Sr.'s, lap.



Landerfelt Easter Photo
Cathy's Parents, Neil Landerfelt, Sr. (holding baby Cathy)
and Alice Mae (Smith),  along with Cathy's sisters,
Trish (left) and Tammy (right).


Alice Mae (Smith) Landerfelt
Alice Mae (Smith) Landerfelt


Clara and Tom Landerfelt
Clara Jane (Burnside) and Charles Thomas Landerfelt, Cathy's Grandparents.


Four Generations of Shaws
Four Generations of Shaws
Left to Right - Thelma Mae (Shaw) Smith, Eva Mae Shaw (holding Tammy Landerfelt), Phillip Clyde Shaw, and Alice ae (Smith) Landerfelt;
These are, in order, Cathy's Grandmother, Great Grandmother (holding sister Tammy), Great Grandfather, and Mother.


Thelma Mae and Charles Martin Oatney
Cathy's Grandmother, Thelma Mae, with second husband, Charles Martin Oatney.


Chief Landerfelt                          
Chief Landerfelt
Cathy's Great Great Uncle, Fire Chief Charles A. Landerfelt, Cathy's Great Great Uncle.
He was the Fire Chief who mechanized the Lancaster, Fairfield Co., OH Fire Department.


Landerfelts         
Landerfelts
Above left (left to right), Cathy's Great Grandparents Joseph Leo and Florence Elizabeth (Taylor) Landerfelt with children,
left to right, Howard Leo "Lee", Edward, Mary Catherine "Kate", and Cathy's Grandfather, Charles Thomas "Tom";
above right, Cathy's Great Grandmother Florence with sons Edward and baby Paul.


Landerfelts            
Phil Landerfelt ID Picture
Above left (picture circa 1912), Cathy's Great Grandparents Joseph Leo and
Florence Elizabeth (Taylor) Landerfelt  along with baby Howard Leo and
Cathy's Grandfather Charles Thomas Landerfelt and Great Aunt Mary Catherine "Kate".
Above, left, is Cathy's Uncle Phil Landerfelt.


AMERICAN EAGLE (1846)
Oil painting. Source: Carl C. Cutler, Queens of the Western Ocean; The Story of America's Mail and Passenger Sailing Lines
(Annapolis: United States Naval Institute, 1961), plate opposite p. 298. Cutler gives no indication of the location of the original.

Webers Arrive in America!

The American Eagle on Which Our Weber Ancestors Sailed to America,
Arriving at New York Harbor on June 17, 1853.


Ship's Passenger Register

Above is a Portion of the Ship's Register Showing Our Webers Who Came to America Aboard the American Eagle.

(Source: June 17, 1853 American Eagle Ship Register, page 8)


ORPHEUS
The 3-masted, square-rigged Bremen ship ORPHEUS, built by J. H. Bosse, Burg (now Bremen-Burg), and launched on April 4, 1854.
261 Commerzlasten/ 588 tons register; 42.5 x 9.5 x 5.2 meters (length x beam x depth of hold). Original owners: Konitzky & Thiermann.
At one point in history, this ship held the record for the fastest Atlantic crossing from Bremen to New York.  The trip took 18 days, 6 hours.

Landerfelts Arrive in America

The Orpheus on Which the Landerfelt (then Landefeld) Ancestors Sailed to America and Arrived November 3, 1854!


Heinrich Landefeld on Ship's Register
Above is a Portion of the Ship's Register Showing Heinrich Landefeld Who Came to America Aboard the Orpheus.
(Source: November 3, 1854 Orpheus Ship Register, page 2)

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