Tag Archive | kapke

Before Genealogical Research, I Hired A Professional!

Written by Lorel Kapke, Sort Your Story Founder

Walter Kapke. Photo courtesy Lorel Kapke.

Walter Kapke. Photo courtesy Lorel Kapke.

“BGR” also known as, Before Genealogical Research, I hired a professional!

Following my mother’s death in 1992, my father and I returned to Wisconsin for a family research visit in 1996. I began searching in earnest for the documents needed to tell my paternal family history. I hired a professional genealogist in Wisconsin to guide me in these early searches. This researcher provided me with numerous documents and records, which fed the fire.”  I received what I call ” a fabulous beginning in research.”

This researcher sent family group sheets and other material, yet one item stands out. This was my paternal family compilation!  Their is quite a bit of discussion within our genealogical community concerning compilations that are not 100 percent correct. In the KAPKE/KOEPKE Compilation introduction, Neil Kruger not only give thanks to Gertrude (Groth) Kaschner for her “tireless effort and long years of work” he also states ” a family tree is like a jigsaw puzzle.

There are always new pieces of information to be discovered, new information to be added, puzzle pieces to fit in, and errors to be uncovered. By asking each branch of the family for their information and then sending back my typed copy for corrections, I hope that errors are at a minimum. I was so fortunate to have received such a treasure that included correct and likely incorrect information that I WAS HOOKED on genealogy and research!

Have you hired a professional researcher? What was your experience?

© 2013 Sort Your Story, Sonoma, California

Community and Collaboration – World War II History

Written by Lorel Kapke, Sort Your Story Founder

When dad was sharing his WWII experience I realized he was about to engage in a war with Germany, spring of 1943. His direct ancestors (Kapke) left Pomerania, Kriess Kammin and arrived in this country fall of 1843. When and where after emigration did the break of his “German ancestry connection” occur?

After creating the Kapke timeline card and writing a brief synopsis of his line (father, grandfather, GG and GGG emigrant grandfather), it appeared to me, the one who left the farm and moved to a town nearby to work in a trade, may have altered the farm family “tight community?” This was in 1878. However, I understand after WWI (1918) this war left the “German community” in Wisconsin in a shambles and after WWII, the damages brought to the German community was the ending of a tight community (per family stories and copious amounts of written data.)However, my father born in 1923 did speak German for a few years. His older brothers born 1914, 1917 and 1919 did speak German.

To explore the past is to understand the present. How can we collaborate with family members and bring up touchy subjects and open communication without offering opinions? How do we avoid upsetting family members when we talk about subjects such as ethnic communities and discrimination?

Can this be accomplished?

© 2013 Sort Your Story, Sonoma, California

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