21 November 2009

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - MRUA

A bit of a detour for some more Saturday Night Fun at Randy Seaver's suggestion. This week he asks "Who is your Most Recent Unknown Ancestor?" This I know!! My most recent unknown is a 3rd Great Grandfather. Number 60 on my Ahnentafel is a missing person. Randy asks what have I looked at my files for this Unknown person recently and what sources might be available to help identify the person.
I first reached a dead end in finding the birth certificate for this unknown man's son (my great-great-grandfather, Teunis Snijders) and discovering the mother listed as an unmarried woman and no father named. I found Heindersje Snijders was the widow of Adriannus Meinster when she died and son Teunis reported her death. Later, from an online index, I found a marriage record of a woman naming her father as Adrianus Meijster and mother Heijndersie Snijder. This marriage was 15 years after Teunis' birth.
I knew Meinster must have been dead by Heindersje's death in 1847, but I did not know when he died. Luckily, the marriage records required copies of bride and groom birth registrations, and if a parent was dead, they had to file a copy of the death registration. So I ordered microfilm from the Family History Library of these marriage records for this daughter.
I thought possibly Meinster was the father of Teunis and married Heindersje sometime after his birth. However, in the marriage appendices, I found a copy of Meinster's death record. He died years before Teunis was born!!
Randy's next question is what sources might help identify this Unknown person. So far, I don't know if there are any court records or other material which might identify or at least provide clues to his identity. For now, I am working on improving my Dutch language skills so I will be able to read guides to archives and the records.

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