I have an idea for another show Ancestry dot com could host. I’d call it Name That Ancestor.
Here’s how the show would work: Ancestry dot com would choose a tree from their kagillion online family trees. Then they would contact researchers from different branches of that same tree and arrange to bring them together for an episode.
Each researcher would be required to bring family photos to the first meeting. Qualifying photos would contain some identified ancestors and some as yet unknown. The goal of each episode would be to name all the ancestors in all the photos by collaborating with people researching other branches of your family tree.
What do you think? Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could match a face with every name in your family tree?
Unfortunately, I don’t have an “in” at Ancestry dot com. Worse yet, I have a large number of family photos that contain unidentified ancestors. Guess I’ll just have to play the home version of Name that Ancestor.
To get the ball rolling, I contacted several cousins who descended from the Clarke, Mueller, Plum and/or Schmitt families in my tree and asked them to help identify anyone they recognize in this picture:
I don’t know where this picture was taken or what occasion prompted it, although I have a couple hypotheses. The ages of the children pictured will help approximating the date of the photograph. I’m also using Tracing Your Ancestors through Family Photographs; A Complete Guide for Family and Local Historians by Jayne Shrimpton as a reference guide.
Working through the list…
- Could this be Alfred MUELLER? [Born 22 Sept 1879. Died 18 Dec 1941.] of Timeline Tuesday fame? He described himself as tall and stout with blue eyes and black hair on his World War I draft registration form. The way he and Gertrude (#2 – known) are standing together seems familiar, like a married couple might pose.
- Ellen Gertrude MUELLER (nee CLARKE) [Born 09 Jun 1883. Died 29 Nov 1948.] who was married to #1 [assuming #1 is Alfred] and the mother of #16 Harold Clarke MUELLER.
- Alvina M MUELLER (nee SCHMITT) [Born 15 Dec 1883. Died 12 Oct 1972.] Husband Otto V MUELLER is not in the photo. Mother of #15 Edith Elise MUELLER.
- John Nicholas SCHMITT [Born 16 May 1841. Died 16 Dec 1925.] Husband of #12 Clara SCHMITT (nee SPECK).
- Mary Mathilda “Tillie” DROLL (nee SCHMITT) [Born 06 Mar 1858. Died 23 Apr 1917.]
- Anne-Marie “Anna” PLUM (nee SCHMITT). [Born 04 Sep 1844. Died 08 Jun 1924.] Husband Carl died 03 Mar 1902.
- Clara SCHMITT (nee SPECK). [Born Aug 1845. Died 16 Dec 1917.] Wife of #4 John Nicholas SCHMITT.
- Pauline BREYER (nee SCHMITT). [Born 24 Mar 1850. Died 10 Mar 1933.]
- Edith Elise MUELLER [Born 19 Jun 1903. Died 05 Sep 1982.] Daughter of Otto V (not pictured) and Alvina M MUELLER # 3.
- Harold Clarke MUELLER [Born 07 Aug 1908. Died 28 Nov 1985.] Son of Alfred (possibly #1) and Ellen Gertrude MUELLER #2.
- possibly John C “Jack” PLUM [Born approx 1907. Died?]
- possibly Julius Jacob PLUM [Born 05 Sep 1878. Died 07 Sep 1959.] possibly father of #17 and #19
- possibly Julius J “Bud” PLUM [Born 10 Sep 1909. Died Mar 1988.]
- possibly Ruth H CONNOR (nee HAASE) [Born 26 Feb 1898. Died June 1984.]
- Alma E McBANE (nee MUELLER). [Born 14 Sep 1882. Died 10 Jun 1967.] Sister of #1 [assuming #1 is Alfred MUELLER]
Many thanks to the cousins willing to help identify the unknowns and my guesses above. I look forward to updating this post!