Ancestors in the 1930 U.S. Federal Census – Part 13

I can’t find her anywhere…and believe me, I’ve looked!

Trientje (ZIGTERMAN) BOS BARSEMA, also known as Catherine or Kate, is the maternal grandmother of my maternal (step) grandfather, Adrian DeVRIES. In other words, she is my step-great-great-grandmother. She was born 9 April 1857 in the Netherlands, probably in the northern Province of Groningen, and immigrated in 1879 with her husband Melle BOS–whom she married 29 November 1877 in Bierum, Groningen, the Netherlands–along with their first child, Gertrude, b. c. 1878. They appear in 1880 in Muskegon, Muskegon Co., Michigan as “John and Kattie Boos,” child “Gertha,” and her brothers, “Sear and Seca Seterman.” They next show up in McBain, Missaukee Co., Michigan, where their second child, Johanna “Josephine” BOS, was born in 1885 (the seven-year gap between children makes me suspect there were some miscarriages or infant deaths between Gertrude and Josephine). Before Melle died c. 1888, they had one more child, Melle “Millard” BOS, born 17 July 1887 in Ottawa County. Millard anglicized his surname to BUSH. The family had relatives in Ottawa County; Coopersville is where Millard and Trientje’s two brothers settled: Siert or Zigert (also known as Silas) ZIGTERMAN and R. (Sikke) SICHTERMAN.

On 16 October 1889, Trientje married Pieter BARSEMA in Lamont, Ottawa Co., Michigan. Pieter was born 14 March 1854, and his birthplace is also believed to be in the Province of Groningen. He immigrated in 1873 from Eenrum, Groningen, the Netherlands to Grand Rapids, Kent Co., Michigan. At the time of his marriage to Trientje, he was a laborer in Muskegon, Muskegon Co., Michigan. Together, Pieter and Trientje had four children: Nellie (b. c. 1891), Sena C. (b. 26 March 1893), Jennie (b. 28 November 1895), and Peter, Jr. (b. 11 Aug 1898).

By 1927, Trientje, then known as Kate, was living with her son Peter and daughter-in-law Elsie at 1149 “E” Avenue, S.W. in Grand Rapids, and was widowed again. In 1929, I have a residence in Grand Rapids for her, but the next record I have is her certificate for her death on 28 January 1935, which states her residence was Livingston Boulevard, Rural Route 4, Grand Rapids Township, the home of her son, Peter.

So where was she when the 1930 U.S. Federal Census was being taken? I have no idea! I have looked at all of her children’s 1930 census records, and can find every one of them, except Peter. Kate is not living with any of her other children during that census, or her brothers, for that matter. I’ve done all kinds of interesting searches, too: surname, first name, wild card, soundex, birth year, etc. Still no luck. Did their household get skipped? Were they moving? Were they gone for the day? Don’t you just hate it when you can’t find an ancestor on a census? 🙂

Ancestors in the 1930 U.S. Federal Census – Part 13

I can’t find her anywhere…and believe me, I’ve looked!

Trientje (ZIGTERMAN) BOS BARSEMA, also known as Catherine or Kate, is the maternal grandmother of my maternal (step) grandfather, Adrian DeVRIES. In other words, she is my step-great-great-grandmother. She was born 9 April 1857 in the Netherlands, probably in the northern Province of Groningen, and immigrated in 1879 with her husband Melle BOS–whom she married 29 November 1877 in Bierum, Groningen, the Netherlands–along with their first child, Gertrude, b. c. 1878. They appear in 1880 in Muskegon, Muskegon Co., Michigan as “John and Kattie Boos,” child “Gertha,” and her brothers, “Sear and Seca Seterman.” They next show up in McBain, Missaukee Co., Michigan, where their second child, Johanna “Josephine” BOS, was born in 1885 (the seven-year gap between children makes me suspect there were some miscarriages or infant deaths between Gertrude and Josephine). Before Melle died c. 1888, they had one more child, Melle “Millard” BOS, born 17 July 1887 in Ottawa County. Millard anglicized his surname to BUSH. The family had relatives in Ottawa County; Coopersville is where Millard and Trientje’s two brothers settled: Siert or Zigert (also known as Silas) ZIGTERMAN and R. (Sikke) SICHTERMAN.

On 16 October 1889, Trientje married Pieter BARSEMA in Lamont, Ottawa Co., Michigan. Pieter was born 14 March 1854, and his birthplace is also believed to be in the Province of Groningen. He immigrated in 1873 from Eenrum, Groningen, the Netherlands to Grand Rapids, Kent Co., Michigan. At the time of his marriage to Trientje, he was a laborer in Muskegon, Muskegon Co., Michigan. Together, Pieter and Trientje had four children: Nellie (b. c. 1891), Sena C. (b. 26 March 1893), Jennie (b. 28 November 1895), and Peter, Jr. (b. 11 Aug 1898).

By 1927, Trientje, then known as Kate, was living with her son Peter and daughter-in-law Elsie at 1149 “E” Avenue, S.W. in Grand Rapids, and was widowed again. In 1929, I have a residence in Grand Rapids for her, but the next record I have is her certificate for her death on 28 January 1935, which states her residence was Livingston Boulevard, Rural Route 4, Grand Rapids Township, the home of her son, Peter.

So where was she when the 1930 U.S. Federal Census was being taken? I have no idea! I have looked at all of her children’s 1930 census records, and can find every one of them, except Peter. Kate is not living with any of her other children during that census, or her brothers, for that matter. I’ve done all kinds of interesting searches, too: surname, first name, wild card, soundex, birth year, etc. Still no luck. Did their household get skipped? Were they moving? Were they gone for the day? Don’t you just hate it when you can’t find an ancestor on a census? 🙂

Adrian DeVRIES Birth Certificate

The image below is a photocopy of the birth certificate of my maternal (step) grandfather, Adrian DeVRIES, and comes from a collection of documents from my maternal grandparents’ estate, known hereafter as the DeVries-Hoekstra Collection:

Birth Certificate of Adrian DeVries, 1916

SOURCE: Michigan. Kent County. County Clerk’s Office, Grand Rapids. Adrian DeVries birth certificate.
Certificate as to Birth
STATE OF MICHIGAN } ss.
County of Kent }

I, LEWIS J. DONOVAN, Clerk of the Circuit Court for the said County of Kent, do hereby certify that upon careful examination of the original records on file in the office of the Clerk of said County and Court, I find the following record as to the birth of Adrian DeVries
Date of Birth June 10, 1916
Sex Male; Color White; Legitimate
Birthplace Grand Rapids, Mich.

PARENTS

Name of Father George E. B. DeVries Residence 1022 Caulfield Ave., Grand Rapids, Mich.
Name of Mother Josephine Bush Residence 1022 Caulfield Ave., Grand Rapids, Mich.
Birthplace of Father Netherlands Eu Occupation Machine Hand
Birthplace of Mother Michigan

All of which appears as of record dated June 30, 1916 and the same being the whole of such original record of said birth as
Recorded in Liber 20 of RECORD OF BIRTH on page 523

IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and official seal, at the City of Grand Rapids, in said County, this 10th day of November A. D. 1941

LEWIS J. DONOVAN, Clerk
Geo. Gruenbauer [signed] Deputy

My grandfather was actually named for his paternal grandmother, Adriaantje “Adriana” (WIERINGA) DeVRIES HOOGSTRA NIEMEYER. His parents followed the Dutch naming pattern of naming the first son after the paternal grandfather (Ben was named for Binnes DeVRIES) and the second son after the maternal grandfather (Millard–“Mel”–was named for Mille BOS). By the time Adrian came along, they probably despaired of ever having any daughters! Rather than following the pattern religiously and naming their third son Jarig–or George–Jr., they decided to name him after George’s mother. Two years later, their only daughter, Catherine Josephine, was named for her maternal grandmother, Trienjte ZIGTERMAN BOS BARSEMA and her mother. Their last child, Calvin, was named for the then-current president, Calvin Coolidge. Coincidentally, Adrian “Ed” DeVries, my maternal grandfather, shared the same birth date (but not birth year!) as his son-in-law, my father.

On this document, my great-grandparents’ anglicized names are given. From other earlier documents and indexes I’ve examined, I know that my great-grandfather was first named Jarig Egbert Binnes DeVRIES in the Netherlands, which was changed to George Edward Benjamin DeVRIES; while my great-grandmother, the daughter of Dutch immigrants, was originally named Johanna BOS. Their address, 1022 Caulfield Avenue, confirms the story that my grandmother told me, that Grandpa was born in “the little house.” My great-grandparents owned a lot with two homes on it, a big one out front (#1024), and a little one in the back (#1022). The family generally lived in the larger house and rented out the smaller one, but on occasion, the situation was reversed, as in this particular case. My uncle recently did some extensive research on the history of these houses in both Grand Rapids city directories and Kent County land records. I will be sharing those records and past and present photos of these two homes, as well as other ancestral Grand Rapids homes of the DeVries and Hoekstra families, in the future.

George is listed as a machine hand on this record. He worked for several Grand Rapids furniture factories for most of his life, including the John Widdicomb Company. Grand Rapids was once considered the furniture capital of the world, utilizing the rich natural resources in the area for this purpose, especially the great quantities of pine. Whenever I look for relatives or ancestors in federal censuses or city directories in Grand Rapids, many–like George DeVries–appear as furniture factory employees.

Birth certificates at that time and place were not created and made available to parents at the time of their children’s births, as they are now. The births were recorded in large books, called libers, in the county clerk’s office. This particular document is a certified copy of the record that appears in the birth liber; in other words, the deputy clerk carefully copied the information from the birth liber onto certificate paper, then sealed and signed the document attesting to its accurate reproduction. The date of the certificate, 10 November 1941, suggests that my grandfather obtained it perhaps to show proof of citizenship and age for his future enlistment with the Army (26 March 1942 was his enlistment date, according to his military record). Although the attack of Pearl Harbor was less than a month away at the time this document was certified, many young men had seen the writing on the wall as the war escalated in Europe and had begun to enlist.

Although Ed traveled extensively around the country and–during World War Two–the world, he lived his whole life in Grand Rapids, passing away there this last January.

Adrian DeVRIES Birth Certificate

The image below is a photocopy of the birth certificate of my maternal (step) grandfather, Adrian DeVRIES, and comes from a collection of documents from my maternal grandparents’ estate, known hereafter as the DeVries-Hoekstra Collection:

Birth Certificate of Adrian DeVries, 1916

SOURCE: Michigan. Kent County. County Clerk’s Office, Grand Rapids. Adrian DeVries birth certificate.
Certificate as to Birth
STATE OF MICHIGAN } ss.
County of Kent }

I, LEWIS J. DONOVAN, Clerk of the Circuit Court for the said County of Kent, do hereby certify that upon careful examination of the original records on file in the office of the Clerk of said County and Court, I find the following record as to the birth of Adrian DeVries
Date of Birth June 10, 1916
Sex Male; Color White; Legitimate
Birthplace Grand Rapids, Mich.

PARENTS

Name of Father George E. B. DeVries Residence 1022 Caulfield Ave., Grand Rapids, Mich.
Name of Mother Josephine Bush Residence 1022 Caulfield Ave., Grand Rapids, Mich.
Birthplace of Father Netherlands Eu Occupation Machine Hand
Birthplace of Mother Michigan

All of which appears as of record dated June 30, 1916 and the same being the whole of such original record of said birth as
Recorded in Liber 20 of RECORD OF BIRTH on page 523

IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and official seal, at the City of Grand Rapids, in said County, this 10th day of November A. D. 1941

LEWIS J. DONOVAN, Clerk
Geo. Gruenbauer [signed] Deputy

My grandfather was actually named for his paternal grandmother, Adriaantje “Adriana” (WIERINGA) DeVRIES HOOGSTRA NIEMEYER. His parents followed the Dutch naming pattern of naming the first son after the paternal grandfather (Ben was named for Binnes DeVRIES) and the second son after the maternal grandfather (Millard–“Mel”–was named for Mille BOS). By the time Adrian came along, they probably despaired of ever having any daughters! Rather than following the pattern religiously and naming their third son Jarig–or George–Jr., they decided to name him after George’s mother. Two years later, their only daughter, Catherine Josephine, was named for her maternal grandmother, Trienjte ZIGTERMAN BOS BARSEMA and her mother. Their last child, Calvin, was named for the then-current president, Calvin Coolidge. Coincidentally, Adrian “Ed” DeVries, my maternal grandfather, shared the same birth date (but not birth year!) as his son-in-law, my father.

On this document, my great-grandparents’ anglicized names are given. From other earlier documents and indexes I’ve examined, I know that my great-grandfather was first named Jarig Egbert Binnes DeVRIES in the Netherlands, which was changed to George Edward Benjamin DeVRIES; while my great-grandmother, the daughter of Dutch immigrants, was originally named Johanna BOS. Their address, 1022 Caulfield Avenue, confirms the story that my grandmother told me, that Grandpa was born in “the little house.” My great-grandparents owned a lot with two homes on it, a big one out front (#1024), and a little one in the back (#1022). The family generally lived in the larger house and rented out the smaller one, but on occasion, the situation was reversed, as in this particular case. My uncle recently did some extensive research on the history of these houses in both Grand Rapids city directories and Kent County land records. I will be sharing those records and past and present photos of these two homes, as well as other ancestral Grand Rapids homes of the DeVries and Hoekstra families, in the future.

George is listed as a machine hand on this record. He worked for several Grand Rapids furniture factories for most of his life, including the John Widdicomb Company. Grand Rapids was once considered the furniture capital of the world, utilizing the rich natural resources in the area for this purpose, especially the great quantities of pine. Whenever I look for relatives or ancestors in federal censuses or city directories in Grand Rapids, many–like George DeVries–appear as furniture factory employees.

Birth certificates at that time and place were not created and made available to parents at the time of their children’s births, as they are now. The births were recorded in large books, called libers, in the county clerk’s office. This particular document is a certified copy of the record that appears in the birth liber; in other words, the deputy clerk carefully copied the information from the birth liber onto certificate paper, then sealed and signed the document attesting to its accurate reproduction. The date of the certificate, 10 November 1941, suggests that my grandfather obtained it perhaps to show proof of citizenship and age for his future enlistment with the Army (26 March 1942 was his enlistment date, according to his military record). Although the attack of Pearl Harbor was less than a month away at the time this document was certified, many young men had seen the writing on the wall as the war escalated in Europe and had begun to enlist.

Although Ed traveled extensively around the country and–during World War Two–the world, he lived his whole life in Grand Rapids, passing away there this last January.

HOEKSTRA – JONKER – TON – ZIGTERMAN – DICKINSON marriages, Ottawa Co., Michigan

I went to my local Family History Center this evening. The film I had ordered (FHL microfilm #0984231: Ottawa County, Michigan Marriage Records, Vol. 5 – 7, 1867 – 1902) was in. I had a number of marriages to search. The first was for my great-great-great-grandparents, Jan Martens HOEKSTRA and Grietje JONKER. Both widowed, they emigrated separately to the U.S. from Kloosterburen, Groningen, the Netherlands to Holland, Ottawa County, Michigan. Jan came in 1867 with a daughter, Geertje “Gertrude”, from his first marriage. I haven’t been able to find Grietje JONKER’s immigration information, but it had to be between 1862, when her youngest son, Filippes DEKKER, died in Kloosterburen, and 1867, when she married Jan.

I found Jan and Grietje’s marriage in Volume 5, page 3. It was record #45, and extremely difficult to read. They were married in Holland (Michigan) on 28 Oct 1867, a mere short four months after Jan emigrated. The officiant was J. B. DeBEE(K?), officiant of the “T. Ref. Ch.” Now looking at the Ottawa County GenWeb site, I cannot find a Reformed Church that starts with a “T.” It might be a “J” or maybe a “1”. Couldn’t find a pastor’s name with DeBEE or DeBEEK, either. More investigation needed. Also, I had a difficult time reading the witnesses names: J. HUIGESTAGES (?) and E. HATLE/HIGTE/SLIGTE (?), both of Holland.

The second important marriage record was for Jan and Griete’s son and daughter-in-law, Martin HOEKSTRA and Jennie TON (my great-great-grandparents). I had long suspected that the “Martin HOEKSTRA – Jana FOW” marriage I had seen listed in the bride’s index at the Ottawa County GenWeb site was for my ancestors, with TON misspelled. I found their record (#233) in Vol. 6, pg. 59. Yes, TON was misspelled as FOW on the record itself…which probably was copied from the original marriage certificate or the clergyman’s records incorrectly. Martin and Jana/Jennie were married 27 Nov 1886 in Holland (Michigan). I know this is their record, because Jennie’s birthplace is correctly listed as Ohio, and Martin’s parents, Jan and Grietje, were the witnesses. It also matches the information Martin and Jennie’s son, John (my great-grandfather), wrote in his Family Record Book, that his parents were married November 1886.

A fun new discovery was a marriage record for Catherine DEKKER, Grietje JONKER’s daughter by her first marriage to Jans Freerk DEKKER, and a half-sister to Martin. She married Bene HAIT of Grand Rapids, Kent County, Michigan on 12 Jan 1874 in Holland (Michigan), according to their marriage record (#83) found in Vol. 5, pg. 98. It lists Catherine’s birthplace as Kloosterburen, which is terrific! Groningen does not yet have all its birth/baptisms listed online at the Dutch National Archives website, so I did not have a specific birthplace for Catherine before now, although I did find other family records (marriages and deaths) located in Kloosterburen. I suspect now that the E. HATLE/HIGTE/SLIGTE witness to Jan and Grietje’s marriage may actually be HAIT. UPDATE: I’ve since discovered that this difficult-to-read surname was actually STUIT, and not HAIT. The witness was very likely Hattie STUIT, mother of Beene STUIT, who married Grietje’s daughter Catherine.

Other marriage records found of lesser importance include those for Zigert ZICHTERMAN – Anna BRONSEMA (Zi was a brother to my step-ancestor, Trientje ZIGHTERMAN BOS BARSEMA); and Wallace William DICKINSON – Elizabeth GARRISON (Wallace was a brother to my ancestor, Lucy May DICKINSON). I could not locate a marriage record for Fonytje “Finnie” HOEKSTRA (Jan and Grietje’s daughter) to Riekel VanTIL, although a descendant of theirs lists 27 Oct 1892 in Holland (Michigan) as their marriage date and location. I found Sherman DICKINSON (a brother to Wallace and Lucy) in the index, but ran out of time to locate the record. And I still need to investigate all DEKKER listings to see if I can locate Fredrich DEKKER’s marriage (brother to Catherine/son of Grietje from her first marriage).

HOEKSTRA – JONKER – TON – ZIGTERMAN – DICKINSON marriages, Ottawa Co., Michigan

I went to my local Family History Center this evening. The film I had ordered (FHL microfilm #0984231: Ottawa County, Michigan Marriage Records, Vol. 5 – 7, 1867 – 1902) was in. I had a number of marriages to search. The first was for my great-great-great-grandparents, Jan Martens HOEKSTRA and Grietje JONKER. Both widowed, they emigrated separately to the U.S. from Kloosterburen, Groningen, the Netherlands to Holland, Ottawa County, Michigan. Jan came in 1867 with a daughter, Geertje “Gertrude”, from his first marriage. I haven’t been able to find Grietje JONKER’s immigration information, but it had to be between 1862, when her youngest son, Filippes DEKKER, died in Kloosterburen, and 1867, when she married Jan.

I found Jan and Grietje’s marriage in Volume 5, page 3. It was record #45, and extremely difficult to read. They were married in Holland (Michigan) on 28 Oct 1867, a mere short four months after Jan emigrated. The officiant was J. B. DeBEE(K?), officiant of the “T. Ref. Ch.” Now looking at the Ottawa County GenWeb site, I cannot find a Reformed Church that starts with a “T.” It might be a “J” or maybe a “1”. Couldn’t find a pastor’s name with DeBEE or DeBEEK, either. More investigation needed. Also, I had a difficult time reading the witnesses names: J. HUIGESTAGES (?) and E. HATLE/HIGTE/SLIGTE (?), both of Holland.

The second important marriage record was for Jan and Griete’s son and daughter-in-law, Martin HOEKSTRA and Jennie TON (my great-great-grandparents). I had long suspected that the “Martin HOEKSTRA – Jana FOW” marriage I had seen listed in the bride’s index at the Ottawa County GenWeb site was for my ancestors, with TON misspelled. I found their record (#233) in Vol. 6, pg. 59. Yes, TON was misspelled as FOW on the record itself…which probably was copied from the original marriage certificate or the clergyman’s records incorrectly. Martin and Jana/Jennie were married 27 Nov 1886 in Holland (Michigan). I know this is their record, because Jennie’s birthplace is correctly listed as Ohio, and Martin’s parents, Jan and Grietje, were the witnesses. It also matches the information Martin and Jennie’s son, John (my great-grandfather), wrote in his Family Record Book, that his parents were married November 1886.

A fun new discovery was a marriage record for Catherine DEKKER, Grietje JONKER’s daughter by her first marriage to Jans Freerk DEKKER, and a half-sister to Martin. She married Bene HAIT of Grand Rapids, Kent County, Michigan on 12 Jan 1874 in Holland (Michigan), according to their marriage record (#83) found in Vol. 5, pg. 98. It lists Catherine’s birthplace as Kloosterburen, which is terrific! Groningen does not yet have all its birth/baptisms listed online at the Dutch National Archives website, so I did not have a specific birthplace for Catherine before now, although I did find other family records (marriages and deaths) located in Kloosterburen. I suspect now that the E. HATLE/HIGTE/SLIGTE witness to Jan and Grietje’s marriage may actually be HAIT. UPDATE: I’ve since discovered that this difficult-to-read surname was actually STUIT, and not HAIT. The witness was very likely Hattie STUIT, mother of Beene STUIT, who married Grietje’s daughter Catherine.

Other marriage records found of lesser importance include those for Zigert ZICHTERMAN – Anna BRONSEMA (Zi was a brother to my step-ancestor, Trientje ZIGHTERMAN BOS BARSEMA); and Wallace William DICKINSON – Elizabeth GARRISON (Wallace was a brother to my ancestor, Lucy May DICKINSON). I could not locate a marriage record for Fonytje “Finnie” HOEKSTRA (Jan and Grietje’s daughter) to Riekel VanTIL, although a descendant of theirs lists 27 Oct 1892 in Holland (Michigan) as their marriage date and location. I found Sherman DICKINSON (a brother to Wallace and Lucy) in the index, but ran out of time to locate the record. And I still need to investigate all DEKKER listings to see if I can locate Fredrich DEKKER’s marriage (brother to Catherine/son of Grietje from her first marriage).