Gene Notes

Some random and some not-so-random thoughts on family history.

Monday, May 10, 2010

I Have A Matrilineal Line?

Years ago, when I joined a genealogy society, there was an older gentleman who was just putting his family history into the computer. Well, sort of. You see, he was only putting the male lines in or just half of his family. I asked him if he had children and he told me proudly, that he did. I asked him what they would think of all his hard work when he passed on only half of it. He thought about it a few minutes and conceded that I was right.

The few times I saw him after that, he was working on putting in the female side of all his lines. I don't know if he ever completed the project, because he died shortly after, but I always think of him when someone tells me the maternal line isn't important. Then I want to hit the speaker with a mallet!

Over at Apple's Tree on Saturday, Apple traced her matrilineal line in a meme. I thought it would be interesting if I did mine. It's pretty short.

1. My mom, Catherine Zimmeth. Born and died in Michigan.
2. Luetta Meyer, born in Minster, Ohio in 1894. Died in Michigan in 1931.
3. Emilie Catherine Marie (Amelia) Knost. Born in New Bremen, Ohio in 1867 and died in Michigan in 1943.
4. Anna-Maria Wilhelmina Charlotte Kettler. Born in Germany in 1831, died in Ohio in 1911.
5. Anna-Maria Charlotte Henrietta Kreinbrok. Born in Germany in 1804 and died in Ohio in 1888.

That's it. I'm actually very happy to have gotten that far back to my great-great-great grandmother.

Copyright 2010, ACK for Gene Notes


  1. What a great story. I'm so glad you said something. Where exactly do such researchers imagine all the male family members come from? Thanks for sharing it. Cheers! Jennifer

  2. He was a sweet man, but where he got the idea the women didn't count, no idea.

  3. P. S. I went on Family Search last night to see if I could find one more generation on my matrilineal line. No luck finding her mother on Family Search, although I did find Christian Kreinbrok, Anna-Maria Charlotte Henrietta's father.

  4. I've never met anyone who wasn't interested in their maternal line! My jaw hit the floor one time when, as an out of town guest, I listened to a speaker tell the audience emphatically that they should not be messing up their trees by adding cousins. As a guest I stayed silent but in hindsight I wish I'd spoken up.

  5. This man had done the research, just didn't think they needed to be included in his genealogy program. This happened back in 1989 or so.

  6. Reading about this man brings to mind a conversation I had with my father-in-law a few years back. He is first generation American on his father's side, his father coming from Germany in the 1920s. My FIL had obtained a wonderful book that was basically a surname study of his German surname. He sent us copies of only the pages that were my husband's direct line going back 300 or more years. He told me that while he (and his children, including my husband) was mentioned in the book his sister (and her children) were not because....get this.... "in German genealogy, women don't count". Goodness only knows where he got this little gem of knowledge.

    Needless to say, I was less than pleased with his very outdated mode of thinking. My husband knew better than to say anything to me about it. I guess he could probably see the steam coming from my ears!

  7. Apple & Tracy, I suffer from an inability to keep my mouth shut. This poor man did not have a chance.