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Monday, June 13, 2016

Mystery Monday Reveals: I Want a Divorce!

Years ago, I received a funeral memorial record from the 1935 death of a cousin in Pittsburgh, PA.  From time to time, I have reflected on the information noticed in the funeral cards and wondered about the rest.

In August 2009, I wrote a tidbit on Cousin Elizabeth Troech?  You see, she showed up at the funeral and signed in as "cousin."  Check out more here about the beginning of this big mystery.  Who was she and just how was she related?

Tick, tock.

On to December 2010,  where the TREUSCH truth became clear as mud.  Ok, it was getting lighter.
Anyway, in reading about the immigration of a family from Germany to Pittsburgh, the name NEU jumped off the page and sparked a memory.  You see, 2gUncle Frank had married a Margaret NEU.  I found this fascinating as I started to search for more on the mysterious cousin Elizabeth TRUESCH.
A friendly volunteer in Pittsburgh checked the Old St Paul Lutheran Cemetery where Uncle Frank resides, and proudly announced there was also an Elizabeth TRUESCH in the NEU plot.  Bingo, Margaret and Elizabeth were sisters!  Read more on this story here.

Now here it is, a beautiful sunny Monday in June 2016 and the mystery is finally solved!  Let me catch you up.

Just a few days ago, I was looking at Ancestry and found a tree on the FALCK family.  While I don't spend much time looking at most trees due to a lack of documentation, this one tree and its documentation caught my eye.  Finally, someone who doesn't just cut and paste.

I looked more closely and saw that the unknown cousin Elizabeth TRUESCH was first married to a CALDWELL.  Hmmmm..  Did I mention that 2gUncle Frank was a CALDWELL(1868-1934)?  I quickly dashed off an inquiry to John in CA and he was Speedy Gonzalez in replying.  We started bouncing ideas off of each other.  We wondered.  We compared notes.  We both started getting excited.  Why?

He had the documentation of Elizabeth's second marriage app to TRUESCH.  I had the documentation on the brothers of Frank CALDWELL.  I went back and re-evaluated what I thought I knew.  There it was.  On the 1900 census, a brother of Frank, George W CALDWELL, JR, b. 1861 is listed as divorced and living with his widowed father in a boarding house.  Hmmmmmm..  Who was his wife?  Did he have children?  I didn't know.

My NEU buddy, John, provided the names of the children of Elizabeth NEU and the unknown CALDWELL.  You could have knocked me over.  My blood was racing.  Elizabeth named her older child Benjamin Gottlib CALDWELL(1886-1978).  Benjamin was the name of 2gUncle Frank's grandfather, Benjamin HUNNEWELL, who died in 1849 cholera epidemic in Pittsburgh.

And just today, I called the Allegheny Co Court Records Dept to see about finding the divorce record for Elizabeth NEU CALDWELL.  I could provide the date of her second marriage app and I could guess the time frame.  The helpful lady found a divorce in 1900 for Elizabeth CALDWELL.  She then asked for the man's name.  Well, that is why I was calling!  I wanted the man's name.  So, I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and blurted out George CALDWELL.  She said yes.  I asked if the middle initial was W?  She said yes.

Bingo.  Monday Mystery solved!  After all these years!

Ahh, genealogy.  Sometimes you just gotta have a divorce.  Sometimes, you get lucky and get it 116 years after!

Ancestry Family Trees, FALCK family Tree owned by muxbuster.
First St Paul German Evangelical Church Cemetery, Mt Oliver, Allegheny, PA.
Funeral Memorial Papers of Austin McClain BRENDEL in possession of AS Eldredge.
"United States Census, 1900," database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 12 June 2016), George Caldwell Jr. in household of Emma Hammond, Precincts 1-2 Pittsburgh city Ward 2, Allegheny, Pennsylvania, United States; citing sheet 2B, family 30, NARA microfilm publication T623 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,241,357.
Allegheny County, PA Court Records, Grant St, Pittsburgh, PA  412-350-4646.

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