58th New York Infantry Regiment

A few days after the Battle of Antietam, on September 22, 1862, my mother’s great-grandfather, George Spiegel, a resident of New York City, enlisted as a private in Company E of the 58th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment. He was 23 years old at the time. According to a report published by the New York Monuments Commission in 1902, the 58th New York was known … Continue reading 58th New York Infantry Regiment

The Lost is Found

Reaching back through the space time continuum, I finally found my great-great-grandfather in time 1860s, in the space exactly where I expected him to be – on the grand island of Manhattan. I am referring to my mother’s great-grandfather, George C Spiegel, an immigrant from Germany and a cigar maker who lived in Dallas, Texas, from the 1870s until he died in 1925. He continued … Continue reading The Lost is Found

Here’s What Happened…

The other day, I had what I like to call a “Monk Moment.” You know that point in an episode of the TV series “Monk” where the detective Adrian Monk would smile and say, “I think I just solved the mystery.” Following this, he would reveal how the crime was committed, prefaced with the words “Here’s what happened…” Presented for your reading pleasure is my … Continue reading Here’s What Happened…

More Questions Than Answers

I have access through my local library to newspaperarchives.com, and I went there last night to see if I could find further information regarding the court case that I wrote about in the previous post. I found a single paragraph in the November 23, 1872, edition of the Savannah Morning News describing the results of the lawsuit in which my great-great-grandfather accused a man of … Continue reading More Questions Than Answers

How Does One Lose 15,600 Cigars?

I found a court case involving my great-great-grandfather, George C Spiegel. This occurred in mid-1872, before the family left Savannah for Dallas. In that year, George was a cigar maker living in Savannah Georgia. The events described in these court documents from the Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia Court, took place a few months before my great-grandmother was born. I discovered these items in an ancestry.com … Continue reading How Does One Lose 15,600 Cigars?

Found One!

It has been a couple of weeks since the United States Census for 1950 was made available to the public after a 72-year wait. Although it is freely available on several family history websites such as ancestry.com and familysearch.org, there is still a lack of indexes that makes it very difficult to find particular individuals without knowing their address and being able to reference that … Continue reading Found One!

The Mystery Package

I looked for my great-great-grandfather, George C Spiegel, at NewspaperArchives.com, focusing specifically on newspapers in Savannah, Georgia, and the years 1869 to 1871. We know from census records that George and his wife, Sophia, lived in Savannah, Georgia from 1869 or earlier to 1871 when they moved to Dallas, Texas. In both towns, George’s occupation was Cigar Maker. The couple’s first two children, George, Jr. … Continue reading The Mystery Package

Why They Did the Things They Did

One facet of my study of family history involves finding answers to why my ancestors did the things they did. For example, some of the questions I seek to answer are: ‘How and why did my Southern ancestors maintain and defend the system of slavery?’ ‘What made my DeBacker family pull up roots in Belgium and go to Kansas in the 1880s?’ ‘Why did my … Continue reading Why They Did the Things They Did

Christmas Eve 1874 in Manhattan’s Little Germany

A little while ago, I made the discovery that the family of one of my great, great-grandmothers lived for a time in a New York City neighborhood that was then known as Little Germany. The family of Sophia Precht (aka Sophia P. von Spiegel) lived, from the mid to late 19th century, in a neighborhood found within the East Village of the New York City … Continue reading Christmas Eve 1874 in Manhattan’s Little Germany