Sunday, January 13, 2013

Case of the missing N

Louis Grothmann
Or is it Grothman, Grotman, Grathman?  This question is not a cause of the family, but rather those that are trying to understand, translate accents and write down what they think is correct.  As of yesterday, I thought the previous four mention names were going to be the only spelling variation I would need to watch for as I searched historical data for Grothmann.  But no, it turns out another variation has popped up; Groveman!

My Grothmann line starts in Prussia around 1860 when Louis Otto Grothmann and his wife Rosalie Hedtke Grothmann started their journey to Chicago and their American life.  Louis was a professional musician of some kind, but I've not been able to find what he played or where.  After coming to America, Louis started being known as Lewis and Grothmann lost the second N, thus Lewis Grothman came to be.  So, while chasing this name, I needed to be aware of the case of the missing N.

Louis and Rosalie were both born in Prussia.  Louis in 1836 and Rosalie in 1846. Leaving Hamburg, they traveled across the Atlantic Ocean aboard the steamship Kepler and arriving in New York  25 October 1864.
Kepler manifest 1864

They were heading for Ohio according to the ships manifest.  What was waiting for them in Ohio? A question that may never get answered. By the taking of US census of 1870,  Louis, Rosalie and two relatively newborns (Elsie and Otto) were recorded in Chicago Illinois.   Louis and Rosalie had eight children together; Anna, Elsie b. 1865, Otto b. 1867, Emma b. 1869, Emily b. 1876, Amelia b. 1877, Frederick and Louis b. 1879.  Of these children I have been able to find four mentioned in history beyond the birth.

Elsie Minnie Grothmann was born in 1865 and appears to be Louis and Rosalie's first born.  She grew up in Chicago and spends most of her life in the big city.  In 1885 at the age of 20, Elsie marries a Frank E Whitfield also of Chicago.  You will notice that the marriage license has Elsie as Else Grotmann at the age of 19.  Frank is a Street Car operator in the big city. Elsie and Frank have only one child;  Grace Rosalie Whitfield, who can read more about by following the link.  Elsie remarries to a Orrin P Talley in December 1921.  This marriage
is not long live as Orrin passes away in November 1923.  Both Frank and Orrin are resting in same plot in the Oakwoods Cemetery Chicago Illinois.  To this date, 1/13/2013, I have not found Elsie death or resting place.

Update:  Elsie Grothmann Whitfield moved to Tacoma Washington after the death of her second husband.  Tacoma is where her daughter lived at the time. Elsie passes away 2 Nov 1934.  Her final resting place is still unknown, since she was cremated, my guess she rests with her daughter.

Otto Grothman was born December 1867 in Chicago.  At the age of 24, Otto marries a Wilhelmina Dudde, 13 August 1892.  Otto and Minnie have two children; Otto and Minnie.  No, that's wasn't a typo. Otto (the younger) was born 1893 and Minnie in 1894  Otto (the elder) passes away in 19 November 1895.  Otto (the younger) working as a bookkeeper, marries Anna Tennyson of Norweigan decent on 18 Jun 1921.  The Chicago marriage register confirms the marriage, but nowhere can the be couple be found in census records, until yesterday as  I was searching for the surname of Tennyson in Chicago, which disclosed the newest variation of Grothmann as Groveman.  Otto and Anna are living with Anna's parent's in Chicago and were numerated in the 1930 US census.  The census recorded age, years married and employment as matching data to what was known about Otto Grothman, so I have accepted this Otto Groveman as the same person.

Becker girls
Emma Grothman was born 1869 in Chicago.  At the age of 21 Emma marries a Joseph Becker of Chicago. This couple has four daughters Hazel b. 1891. Edna b. 1893,  Rose b. 1895 and Carrie b. 1900.

Emily F Grothman was born December 1876 in Chicago.  In May 1899 she marries Louis Dediemar of Kenosha Wisconsin.  By the spring of 1901 Emily has passed on due Phthisis Pulmonalis, which is tuberculosis. Louis and Emily had no children  prior to her passing.

UPDATE: A cousin of Louis DeDiemar shared the resting place for Emily;  Green Ridge Cemetery Kenosha, Wisconsin. I have created a FindaGrave Memorial with a photo of the headstone. I hope you take a moment to view.

That begins us back to the beginning of our story as we end with a few more details about Louis and Rosalie. Louis Otto Grothman passes away in 1891 at home, 6732 Michigan Ave, Chicago.  After Louis' death Rosalie remarries in April 1894 to a August Fenske.  The Fenske's relocates to Kenosha Wisconson.  Rosalie passes away in 1915 at the age of  69.

Grothman family circa 1882
From the back to front is; Elsie, Otto, Emma, Anna and Emily. Sitting is Rosalie and Louis Grothmann.  To date I haven't found anything for Anna other than this photo.  

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  1. Wonderful post, Bill. Congratulations on all your hard work, and your most recent 'breakthroughs', through the brick walls we all encounter in historical research, be it genealogical or otherwise. I know how satisfying that can be!

  2. Such great work putting this story together! I have alway thought you resembled Louis, especially in the top picture!
    It is so strange the Elsie would not be buried at the same place. Especially since both husbands were there. Could it be possible she was buried there but no marker placed? Guess there would still be a record of that.
    Love all the pictures!! -Amy

  3. Amy, Elsie moved west to Washington state after her second husband died. See more in the blog above. There is an update for Elsie.