Aug 08

Tombstone Tuesday–Clarence Huffman

Clarence Huffman, Kessler Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2017 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Clarence Huffman, located in row 7 of Kessler Cemetery, Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio. The small heart-shaped marker, embellished with fern leaves, is inscribed:

Son of
G.F. & Sarah
Apr. 5, 1900
11 D.
Our darling baby

Clarence was the last child born to George Ferdinand and Sarah Roseann (Dodge) Huffman. He was born near New Corydon, Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana, on 25 March 1900, as calculated from information on his tombstone. His death certificate does not give his age or date of birth and I was unable to find his birth certificate on-line.

The Huffman family attended Zion Lutheran Church in Chatt for a short time after George and Sarah were married but there is no mention of their son Clarence in the church records.

Clarence died of bronchitis on 5 April 1900 at their home near New Corydon. His doctor was from Chatt, but I was not able to read his name. The handwriting on his death certificate is difficult to read and there were several words that I could not make out. [1] It appears he may have been ill from the day he was born or became ill shortly after birth.

Clarence Huffman, Kessler Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2017 photo by Karen)

Although he was born in 1900 Clarence was not enumerated in the 1900 census because he died in April and the census was taken on 25 June. In that census Sarah reported that six of her seven children were living. [2]

Clarence is buried next to his older sister Emma V. Both are buried under what is now a large tree.

Clarence Huffman, Kessler Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2017 photo by Karen)


[1] Indiana Death Certificates, 1899-1900, microfilm roll 1, Indiana State Board of Health, Death Certificates, 1900-2011;; Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, Indiana.

[2] 1900 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.11A, dwelling & family 198, Geo F Huffman;; FHL microfilm 1240357, NARA microfilm T623, roll 357.

Aug 04

Summer Reading

Retirement is good. It gives me the time to do things I have been putting off because I didn’t have the time. That’s the way it is supposed to work–having the extra time for things like reading. I love to read but somehow I got out of the habit of reading the last few years. Other things always seemed to take priority.

But this summer I have made it a point to change that and start reading more again. And no, I don’t mean trying to translate and read an old German-American Cookbook like I wrote about last week.

So what have I been reading? A practical how-to book for starters.

The older I get I wonder who will want my genealogy research collection after I am gone. The collection would include research data, photos, documents, and other artifacts. Keeping all those things organized has always been a challenge for me but I never considered that organization could benefit me as well as the future recipient of my collection.

A Karen’s Chatt reader told me about a book she wrote that addresses those points. I downloaded her book to my Kindle and read it this past week. It is not a long book, but a quick read of 98 pages, and it will be handy to pull out for future reference.

Planning a Future for Your Family’s Past, Marian Wood, 2016.

The book, authored by Marian Burk Wood, is Planning a Future for Your Family’s Past: How to organize your genealogy materials, make decisions about your collection, and pass what you know to future generations. It was published in October 2016. I have the Kindle edition but it is also available in paperback by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.

Marian is a New York City native and was in marketing before co-authoring a number of college textbooks. She is also an avid family genealogist, genealogy lecturer, and genealogy blogger of Climbing My Family Tree.

Marian’s book gives step-by-step suggestions for organizing family genealogy research data, photos, documents, and family heirlooms. Her ideas go beyond basic organization and include sorting, labeling, filing, cataloging, and indexing. All things that are helpful to me.

The book addresses the subject that all genealogists will face someday: what will happen to our genealogy collections when we are gone? So her organizational tips are not only helpful to me today they are also aimed at helping the future recipient of my genealogy collection.

Marian’s book points out how helpful cataloging and indexing the different family collections would be for the interested person who will some day inherit a collection. Basically, if everything is organized, divided, and labeled it will make it easier for that person to know what has already been researched and collected. The book offers advice about passing on genealogical materials, setting up a genealogy “will,” and even includes some sample forms.

In addition her book covers sharing research information and allocating ownership of family photos and heirlooms–what to keep yourself and how to decide what to do with the rest.

I plan to put many of the organizational ideas into action. Thanks, Marian, for some very good suggestions.

My summer reading has also included a non-fiction genealogy mystery series by Nathan Dylan Goodwin—The Forensic Genealogist series, featuring fictional genealogist Morton Farrier.

The Missing Man, Nathan Dylan Goodwin.

As far as I know there are currently six books in the series and I am reading the sixth. I like to try to read them in order, although you do not have to follow the specific order.

These books are hard for me to put down. Morton Farrier is a forensic genealogist and his client research takes some very interesting twists and turns. As the genealogical mystery unfolds I like the way the story goes back and forth in time, from the present to the past, allowing the reader to learn what actually happened in the past. In addition, Morton has his own personal genealogy mystery to solve.

The Morton Farrier Forensic Genealogist mystery series books:
Hiding the Past
The Lost Ancestor
The Orange Lilies
The America Ground
The Spyglass File
The Missing Man

I hope Goodwin has plans to write a few more books in the Farrier series.

The Spyglass File, Nathan Dylan Goodwin.

Another genealogy mystery series is the Sweeney St. George Mysteries by Sarah Stewart Taylor. I have read all of these:

O’Artful Death
Mansions of the Dead
Judgment of the Grave
Still as Death

There is at least one other genealogy series by a different author and I have those books loaded on my Kindle, ready to begin reading.

Earlier in the summer I enjoyed reading The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck. This is not a genealogy mystery but is a historical fiction novel set in Germany during and after WWII.

I am so enjoying having the extra time to read!

Aug 01

Tombstone Tuesday–Emma V. Huffman

Emma V. Huffman, Kessler/Liberty Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2017 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Emma V. Huffman, located in row 7 of Kessler Cemetery, aka Liberty Cemetery, Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Emma V
Dau of
G.F. & S. Huffman
Dec. 25, 1903
19 Y.  9 M. 6 D.

Emma was the second child born to George Ferdinand and Sarah Roseann (Dodge) Huffman. She was born 19 March 1884, as calculated from the information on her tombstone.

The George and Sarah Huffman resided in Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio, for the first few years after they married in 1877 but moved across the state line to Indiana by March 1884, where their daughter Emma was reportedly born.

The family attended Zion Chatt for a time but there is no mention of Emma in the church records.

The George Huffman family in 1900, Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana: George F, 46; Sarah, 44; Burrell, 24; Emma, 16; Nora, 13; Mary 10; Maggie, 8; and Francis, 3. Emma was reportedly born in Indiana. [1]

Emma V. Huffman, Kessler/Liberty Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2017 photo by Karen)

Emma died 25 December 1903, most likely in Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana. I could not locate her death certificate on-line and it was not recorded in Zion Chatt’s records.


[1] 1900 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.11A, dwelling & family 198, Geo F Huffman;; FHL microfilm 1240357, NARA microfilm T623, roll 357.

Jul 28

Sarah (Breuninger) Schumm’s German-American Cookbook, 1892

While looking through some of those old German books that once belonged to my Schumm ancestors I found a very old cookbook that belonged to my great-grandmother Sarah (Breuninger) Schumm (1861-1921). She was the wife of Louis Schumm and mother of my grandfather Cornelius Schumm.

Das Deutsch-Amerikanische Kochbuch, Illustrirt, (The Illustrated German-American Cookbook), 1892, owned by Sarah (Breuninger) Schumm

This book is titled Das Deutsch-Amerikanische Kochbuch, Illustrirt, (The German-American Cookbook, Illustrated), published in Chicago, Illinois, copyrighted 1892. “The Handbook for Kitchen and Dining.”

The German-American Cookbook, 1892

Written inside the front cover is Sarah Schumm, 1893, likely written by Sarah herself. She would have purchased the book very soon after it was printed.

Sarah (Breuninger) Schumm, 1893, German-American Cookbook

As I looked through the book I quickly noticed that it was much more German than American and that the illustrations were few and far between. It was printed in Gothic typeface in Fraktur style, a print that is hard for me to read and difficult to differentiate between certain letters.

I really do not know German. I know a couple verbal greetings—guten tag, guten morgan, guten abend–good day, good morning, good evening. I can read a tiny little bit of German, what I call “church German,” the handwritten German in church records. You really don’t need to know a lot of German to translate church records. Being able to read the old Gothic script and knowing a few key words like born, baptized, married, died, and buried is about all it takes. Being familiar with the surnames is also tremendously helpful.

At any rate, I thought it would be fun and interesting to look at some of the recipes my great-grandmother might have used over 100 years ago.

Fische (Fish) recipes, 1892 German-American Cookbook

I tried to translate a couple recipes from the cookbook using Google Translate. I had moderate success and it was slow going. However my cousin Linda was able to help me with the translations. Here from Pennsylvania for our annual Miller reunion, Linda stayed at our house last weekend. She lived in Germany for about 18 years and has a pretty good working knowledge of the language. She helped translate some of those recipes and we had fun going through the book. We even came up with a sample meal menu using recipes from, which I have included at the end of this post.

We found it difficult to translate every word and some of the translations are very literal. The Germans like to combine words, making some long, descriptive words. In addition the order of the words in their sentences is unusual for us today.

The recipes are different, to say the least. They used different measurements and the recipes often do not indicate the cooking time or temperature. It makes you wonder how they controlled the temperature in a wood-fired oven.

Inhalts Verzeichnis (Table of Contents), 1892 German-American Cookbook

Some examples from the Inhalts Verzeichnis (Table of Contents):

Suppen (Soups)

  • Ueber Suppen (About Soups)
  • Gemusesuppen (Vegetable Soups)
  • Milchsuppen (Milk Soups/cream soups)
  • Fruchtsuppen (Fruit Soups)
  • Tilchsuppen (Table Soups)
  • Weinsuppe mit Graupen (Wine Soup with Barley)

Puddinge (Puddings)

  • Warme Puddinge (Warm Puddings)
  • Brotpudding (Bread Pudding)
  • Pfannkuchen Pudding (Pancakes Pudding)

Gemusen (Vegetables)

  • Blumenkohl (Cauliflower)

Gemuse and Kartoffelspeisen (Vegetables and Potatoes)

Kloesse (Dumplings)

  • Buchweizengruesskloesse (Buckwheat Dumplings)
  • Reisklosse (Rice Dumplings)

Eier, Mehl und Milch-Speisen (Egg, Flour and Milk Dishes)

Salat (Salads)·

  • Krabbensalat (Crab Salad)

Aspicks, Gelees, Sandwiches, etc. (Clear jellies [animal fat], Jellies, Sandwiches)

Torten (Cakes)

  • Kartoffeltorte (Potato Cakes)
  • Apfeltorte mit Butter Teig (Apple Cake with Butter Pastry)
  • Brottorte (Bread Cake)
  • Pfannkuchen (Pancakes)

Gefrorenes (Frozen)

There is a whole chapter on Knodel (Dumplings)

Below are a few of the recipes we tried to translate:

Sauerbraten (”angry” Roast Meat): 4-4 ½ pounds beef; 2 pints vinegar, 2 pints water, onion cut in two; add bay leaves, marjoram, 3-4 cloves, thyme, small tablespoon of pepper, salt; make fire, cook marinade and marinade beef for 24 hours. Put bacon on the bottom of roasting pan… [This recipe was too long and complicated and we stopped translating at this point.]

Rumauflauf (Rum Soufflé): take the peel of a lemon or apple and a little cup of rum. Follow the recipe for zitronenauflauf/lemon soufflé.

Zitronenauflauf (Lemon Soufflé): Beat 93 grams of butter and 186 grams of fine sugar; add a tablespoon of potato flower (cornstarch); mix in 10 egg yolks and the grated peel from 2 lemons. Drop egg whites and strained juice after each other into the batter. Beat the egg whites and fold into the mixture. Bake a half hour.

Zitronenauflauf (Lemon Souffle) recipe, 1892 German-American Cookbook.

Schokoladen Auflauf (Chocolate Soufflé): Instead of coffee you take 62 grams of grated chocolate, 1/2 pint of cream, 93 grams of sugar, while the other is treated and finished as indicated.

As you can see, some things may have been changed or lost in the translations.

The cookbook also includes some recipes with beer and spirits. After all, the Germans like their beer.

Schaumsuppe “Foam Soup” (Sparkling Wine)

Weissweinsuppe mit Sago (White Wine Soup with Tapioca)

Rotweinsuppe mit Sago (Red Wine Soup with Tapioca)

There are also recipes for Beer Soup with Bread, White Beer Soup with Tapioca, and a recipe for Grogg.

Eierbier (Egg Beer): beat six egg yolks with 60 grams of sugar 1/4 hour then add pint of cooked [warm/heated] beer and a little bit of ginger or nutmeg.

Biersuppe zum Trinken (Beer Soup to Drink): Take a good liter of brown beer and a little bit of ginger and cook, add 2 egg yolks, a cup of sweet cream, and a little sugar, beat together and put in a cup with “toasted fine bread pieces” [croutons].

Gluehwein (“Happy Wine”): 1 bottle red wine, 93 grams sugar, lemon peel, a cinnamon stick and 6 dried cloves; simmer and strain.

This cookbook even had the 1890s German version of a Bloomin’ Onion: Zwiebeln Gebacken, in Bier-Teig (Onion Baked in Beer Batter).

I remember having at a meal at St. Paul Lutheran, Liberty Township and Bessie Regedanz made a German dish that consisted of baked onions and apples, Zwiebel mit Apfel in German. Unfortunately this cookbook did not appear to have that recipe.

One of the few illustrations in the Illustrated German-American Cookbook, 1892

The last chapter of the cookbook is Grossmutter’s Hausreglen und Ruthe—“Grandmother’s House Rules and Advice,” which includes a paragraph on what to do when someone is sick. This would probably be an interesting chapter, but it was just too difficult to translate.

Below is the menu for a traditional German meal that Linda and I put together from recipes included in the book.

A traditional German meal would start with a soup, followed by a salad. The main course would consist of meat and potatoes or dumplings. The meal would conclude with dessert.  Our special German meal:

Ochsenschwanz Suppe (Ox Tail Soup)

Rotkohlsalat (Red Cabbage Salad): finely shred a small head red cabbage, sprinkle salt over top, let sit for an hour, add oil, vinegar, white pepper

Your choice of Sauerbraten (marinated roast beef or pork), or Hasenpfeffer (Rabbit)

Spatzel (Noodles)

Zitronenauflauf (Lemon Soufflé)

Disclaimer: I do not guarantee the accuracy of any of these translations. Make them at your own risk.  At any rate, this book makes a nice addition to my cookbook collection, even if I can’t read it.

Jul 25

Tombstone Tuesday–Sarah R. (Dodge) Huffman

Sarah Roseann (Dodge) Huffman, Chattanooga Mausoleum, Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio. (2017 photo by Karen)

This is the mausoleum marker of Sarah Rosanna (Dodge) Huffman, located in the Chattanooga Mausoleum, Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio. The vault is inscribed:

Sarah R. Huffman

According to Zion Chatt’s records Sarah Rosanna/Roseann/Rose Ann Dodge was born 12 February 1858, while her death certificate gives her date of birth as 12 February 1854. She was born in Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana, [1] the daughter of Hamilton and Mary (Sparks) Dodge.

The Dodge family in 1860: Hamilton, 30; Mary, 28; Sarah R, 4; Sylvester E, 1. Sarah’s parents were reportedly born in Ohio and their children were born in Indiana. They had a New Corydon post office address and Hamilton Dodge was a farmer. [2]

The Dodge family in 1870: Hamilton, 47; Mary, 40; Sarah, 14; Sylvester, 12; Mary A, 8; Eli, 6. The family still lived in Jefferson Township with a New Corydon address and Hamilton farmed. Son Sylvester helped on the farm. [3]

Sarah Rosanna Dodge married George F. Huffman on 16 August 1877 in Adams County, Indiana, married by Thomas E. Macy. [4] George was the son of Ferdinand and Elizabeth (Hartzog/Herzog) Hoffman, born 29 June 1853 in Liberty Township, Mercer County, Ohio.

In 1880 George and Sarah Huffman had one child, Burley, spelled Burleigh here, a 1 year old boy. They lived in Liberty Township and George worked as a carpenter. Their household in 1880: George, 25; Sarah R, 23; and Burleigh, 1. [5]

The family attended Zion Chatt for awhile, and daughter Mary Olga’s baptism was recorded in the church records in 1892. She was baptized at the family home.

By 1900 the George Huffman family had moved across the state line and resided in Jefferson Township, Adams County, Indiana, moving there about 1884, where daughter Emma was reportedly born. Their household in 1900: George F, 46; Sarah, 44; Burrell, 24; Emma, 16; Nora, 13; Mary 10; Maggie, 8; and Francis, 3. George and Sarah had been married 23 years and six of their seven children were living. George farmed. [6]

In 1910 only two of their children still lived at home with their parents George and Sarah on their Adams County farm: Maggie, 18, and Francis, 13. Five of the seven Huffman children were still living. They lived next door to their son Burley, who was married to Maggie. [7]

Zion Chatt’s records indicate that Sarah was baptized at Zion Chatt on 21 July 1912 and confirmed there by Rev. L. Loehr on 22 July 1912.

George and Sarah still resided in Jefferson Township with son Francis H, age 22 in 1920. George was 63 and Sarah was 61. George was a general farmer and Francis helped on the farm. [8]

The family in 1930: George F, 77, and Rosanna, 73. They lived next door to their son Francis, his wife Effie, and their three children. George’s occupation was livestock farmer. [9]

George and Sarah moved back to Ohio by 1935 and lived in Chattanooga, where George died 18 January 1937.

In 1940 widow Sarah, age 84, lived in the same home as she and George had in 1935, the home they owned in Liberty Township, Mercer County. Next to them on the census page were Carl and Marcella Schroeder. [10]

Sarah (Dodge) Huffman died on 4 April 1947 in Allen County, Indiana, of a cerebral hemorrhage she had four days before, due to arteriosclerosis, which she had for 9 years. Hardy & Hardy of Geneva, Indiana, were in charge of the arrangements and she was buried on the 7th. Dr. Merrill Osborn, Willshire, Ohio, signed her death certificate. Her date of birth was given as 12 February 1854 and she was a 93 year-old widowed housewife. This record also indicates that she was born in Indiana, that her father was Hamilton Dodge, and that the name of her mother was unknown. The informant was Mrs. Maggie Bollenbacher, Chattanooga, Ohio. Sarah’s usual address was also Chattanooga. [1]

George F. and Sarah (Dodge) Huffman had 7 children:
Burley (1878-1948), married Margaret “Maggie” (Engle) Fetters
Emma V (1884-1903)
Nora (1887-1971), married Welker Woodruff
Mary Olga (1889-1920), married William G Bollenbacher
Margaret “Maggie” Iona (1892-1976), married Jacob Dewald Bollenbacher
Francis H (1896-1988), married Effie Boice
Clarence (1900-1900)

Sarah is buried next to her husband George in the mausoleum. Her father is buried in Kessler Cemetery.


[1] Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-2001, Year 1947, Roll 4, Indiana Archives and Records Administration, Indianapolis, IN; Sarah Rosan Huffman, 4 Apr 1947;

[2] 1860 U.S. Census, Jefferson Adams, Indiana, p.228, dwelling 1599, family 1578, Hamilton Dodge;; FHL microfilm 803242, NARA microfilm M653, roll 242.

[3] 1870 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, p.39B, dwelling & family 65, Hamilton Dodge;; FHL microfilm 545795, NARA microfilm M593, roll 296.

[4] “Indiana Marriages, 1811-2007,”, George Hoffman & Rosanna Dodge, 16 Aug 1877; Adams County Marriages, FHL microfilm 2321470.

[5] 1880 U.S. Census, Liberty, Mercer, Ohio, ED 188, p.474C, dwelling 50, family 53, George Hoffman;; FHL microfilm 1255048, NARA microfilm T9, roll 1048.

[6] 1900 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.11A, dwelling & family 198, Geo F Huffman;; FHL microfilm 1240357, NARA microfilm T623, roll 357.

[7] 1910 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, Ed 4, p.2A, dwelling & family 34, George Huffman;; FHL microfilm 1374351, NARA microfilm T624, roll 338.

[8] 1920 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.7B, dwelling 148, visited 158, George F Huffman;; NARA microfilm T625, roll 420.

[9] 1930 U.S. Census, Jefferson, Adams, Indiana, ED 4, p.4B, dwelling 94, family 95, George F Huffman;; FHL microfilm 2340309, NARA microfilm T626, roll 574.

[10] 1940 U.S. Census, ED 54-22, p.15A, line 23, Sarah Huffman;; NARA microfilm T627, roll 3114.





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