My wife likes to do jigsaw puzzles. On a few occasions she has told me that a certain piece is just not there. She even searches the floor and under furniture for the missing piece. Eventually, she discovers that the piece is not missing. She has just placed it in the wrong location on the puzzle. Once she has placed that piece in its correct part of the puzzle, she’s back in the business of completing the full picture.
I think I just went through the same process while researching for this post. Actually, it was our buddy in Germany, Tim Yamnitz, who told me that I had put a puzzle piece in the wrong place a while back. Not only had I placed it in the wrong spot, but it was our German Family Tree that still has it wrong and has to be corrected. Perhaps you might want to reread the post, A Disappearing Winter, which was written this past January. And this time, you should read the comment that Tim made after it was published. He points out our mistake and offers some clues to find the correct piece to replace the one that was mistakenly placed.
I did not even know that I was on a trip to discover the right puzzle piece until I was already well into researching another character. It all began when I found the name of Elizabeth Steiner, who was born on this day, March 22, 1849 in Austria. Our GFT puts Elizabeth into the family of Mathias and Rosalie (Schupfer) Steiner. If that is the case, then Elizabeth was the sister of Josepha (Steiner) Mirly, who was a main character in another recent post, Parents of the Fake Mirly. However, I am not so sure that this Elizabeth Steiner belongs in that family because another Elizabeth Steiner was born into those Steiner’s in 1862, and I never see today’s Elizabeth Steiner in a census entry with Mathias and Rosalie Steiner. If she’s not in that family, then there’s another misplaced puzzle piece in our GFT jigsaw puzzle. The Mathias Steiner family came to America aboard the ship, Deutschland, in 1868. You will see an Elizabeth (Elise) who is 4 years old on this passenger list, but that cannot be the one born in 1849.
A fact that is provably correct is that Elizabeth Steiner married a man by the name of Johann Huttegger on August 9, 1868. That sent me on a search for information about him. Johann almost has the same birthday as Elizabeth. He was born on March 24th. However, he was about 12 years older than Elizabeth because he was born in 1837. Johann was also born in Austria, and he was the original Huttegger to show up in this area. As was the case with so many other Austrians, he settled in the Shawnee Township and became a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells. After finding a few records that included John, I decided to see if I could find him on a passenger list for a ship coming to this country. What I found is what I could call the Rosetta Stone for finding the real person who was discussed in the post about Carl Dede marrying another Elizabeth…Elizabeth Winter. But I did not know it right away. Here is the passenger list that I found for the ship, America, that arrived in New York City on July 18, 1868. I did not realize it right away, but I eventually noticed that the person under Johann Hutteger was Elizabeth (Elisa) Steiner.
At this point, I noticed that there was a group of 5 people listed together on this passenger list who were from Austria. The surname, Fischbacher, piqued my curiosity, so I went to the GFT to search for that name. I found just one Fischbacher. Marie Fischbacher’s information is found here.
- FISCHBACHER, Marie (Born 6 Jun 1837, Married 9 Aug 1868, Died 14 Sep 1873) [NewWellsMO]: Marie Fischbacher and Winter Peter married on 9 Aug 1868; [NewWellsMO]: Marie nee Fischbacher Winter, Died 14 Sep 1873 from congestive chills, Buried 16 Sep 1873, 36y3m8d old; [FindAGrave]: Marie nee Fischbacher Winter, Born 6 Jun 1837, Died 14 Sep 1873, Buried in Immanuel Lutheran Old Cemetery, New Wells MO
- WINTER, Peter (Born 20 May 1826)
Lo, and behold! Marie Fischbacher married Peter Winter, who is also part of the group of five America passengers. I also had another “Eureka!” moment when I saw that Peter and Marie were also married on August 9, 1868. That means that just 3 short weeks after the 4 adult passengers arrived in the United States, they would get married in a double wedding That event took place at Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells. We can take a look at the church records for those two couples below.
A civil record from Cape Girardeau County is also available to view.
That ship, America, turned out to be what I call a Love Boat. The two couples look as if they are some more people who came to this country to get married. I have written before about the fact that people in Germany and Austria had to jump through a lot of hoops in order to get married there. Many discovered that it was a lot easier to get married in the United States and chose to do so, such as these 4 lovebirds.
Some questions remain in my mind about the 4 year-old Elisa who is also found on that passenger list. That document shows that her surname was Fischbacher. One must wonder who her father was. Was Marie originally married to a Fischbacher husband, and they had a child, Elizabeth? Was this girl an illegitimate child? And if so, was Peter Winter her father? What we do know is that this girl would later go by the name Elizabeth Winter, and she was the actual wife of Carl Dede. When she had children during the time period when birth records were kept, her maiden name was given as Winter, not Fischbacher.
I was unable to find either of these two couples in the 1870 census. Then Marie Winter died in 1873 at the age of 36. In 1876, a Missouri state census was taken, and we find Peter Winter with 2 children, the oldest being Elizabeth.
Our German Family Tree includes 3 children born to Peter and Marie, and all of them died rather early, even the Maria shown in the above census entry. Also, Elizabeth is not listed in our German Family Tree as a child of Peter and Marie (Fischbacher) Winter. Elizabeth Winter married Carl Dede in 1884, and their story is told in the post mentioned earlier. If the other Elizabeth Winter (also born in 1864) died before the 1870 census, the “Koestering Hole” in Trinity’s records could be the explanation. Peter Winter died in 1892 when he was almost 66 years old. His death record is found in the books of Salem Lutheran Church in Farrar, where the Dede’s were members. Marie Winter was buried in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in New Wells and Peter Winter was buried in the Salem Lutheran Cemetery in Farrar, but neither cemetery on Findagrave has gravestone photos for them.
Let’s return to the Hutteger/Steiner couple. I not only did not find the Huttegger’s in the 1870 census, but I did not find them in the 1876 Missouri state census (although I didn’t try real hard). We do find them in the 1880 census with 3 children. John was a farmer in the Shawnee Township. The GFT lists 6 children born to John and Elizabeth.
John Huttegger died in 1891 at the age of 53. I was unable to find Elizabeth in the 1900 census, but she is later found in the one for 1910. She was living with her youngest son, William. Right below that entry, you can find that of John Huttegger, another one of her sons.
Elizabeth Huttegger died in 1913 at the age of 64. Her death certificate does not give us much help in identifying whether she was part of the Mathias Steiner family or not. Her father is listed as either M. ore Mr. Steiner and no name is given for her mother.
A later death certificate for their son, William Huttegger, says his mother’s maiden name was Steinhoff, not Steiner, but I think that was just a mistake.
Both John and Elizabeth Huttegger are buried in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in New Wells.
Today, one of the Elizabeth’s led me to a resolution about a problem with the identification of another Elizabeth. I have already talked with Lynn Degenhardt about making some revisions to our German Family Tree. Sometimes, you do find things by going down a lot of rabbit holes, and what you find is not what you were looking for in the first place. I think we have now placed one puzzle piece in its proper place, but there are still some pieces left unfinished. Is Elizabeth Steiner the daughter of Mathias and Rosalie Steiner? Who is Elizabeth Fischbacher? Perhaps I can turn the puzzle back over to Tim Yamnitz to let him perform his magic. I think the GFT jigsaw puzzle will always be an unfinished project, but getting more complete as time goes by.