Tuesday, April 8, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #14 ~ Jacob Zaugg, Sr

Written for Amy Johnson Crow's Challenge 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. (click on the icon in the sidebar for details at Amy's blog) 

First just the facts:
Name: Jacob Zaugg
Born: 21-Feb-1795* Bern, Switzerland
Married: Anna Stetler, 23-Jun-1820, Eggiwil, Bern, Switzerland
Died: 09-Dec-1873, Mount Eaton, Wayne County, Ohio
 *This is a calculated date based on the description in Wayne Co records of Jacob being 78yr 9mo 18days when he died on 09-Dec-1873

Relationship: Jacob is my 4th great-grandfather.
I am descended through:
 - his son, Jacob Zaugg, Jr (1824 - 1900)
 - his daughter, Emma (Zaugg) Graber (1860 – 1919)
 - her daughter, Ella Rosa (Graber) Saurer (1883 - 1963)
 - her daughter, Lela Mabel (Saurer) Ritchie (1913 - 1991)
 - her son, my father, Donald John Ritchie (living)

I have a copy of Jacob's will which he signed. Since I don't have a picture of Jacob, his signature is my "picture" of Jacob - or Jakob as he would have written it.

The will tells me several interesting things:

His son Daniel was already deceased by Oct, 1870.  I have not yet found an exact date of death for Daniel, but this certainly narrows it down.

The accounting by Samuel, the son who was the executor of the will, tells me that indeed Lizzie's oldest daughter's Anna married a man named Anton Kauffmann.  I had seen that in several Ancestry trees with census information from Kansas attached but I didn't really see anything to make the leap that Anna Wanner from Indiana had become Anna Kauffmann of Kansas. Now I have more confidence in that piece of information.

Along with the will are a number of letters that I have not had translated.  They appear to be letters from the children not in Wayne County acknowledging receipt of their share of the inheritance. One of the letters is from Anton Kauffmann.  (I would love to have these translated some day.) All of the children who lived locally signed a  note on April 1, 1875 indicating receipt of their respective share.

Looking at all the papers - it's not just the will, it's the probate packet - it just reminds me that I have found so many things that I have yet to take the time to really evaluate and pull out all the information they contain.  I'm embarrassed to say that I  have had these digital copies for years and just in the past few month transcribed the will and started to look at everything that I had downloaded the last time I visited the Wayne Co, Ohio library. 

I keep saying that I need to go back to Wayne County to do some more research, but what I really need to do is look at what I have first!!

I love this challenge - even as it points out more and more of my short comings with each week.


  1. Wow - you have some wonderful treasure to pore over, Diana. I'm finding similar bits and bobs of papers etc. in my folders and scanned into my computer as I do these 52/52 posts.

    1. Hi Celia - I am amazed sometimes (and embarrassed!) at what I already have. This 52 Ancestors challenge has really been an eye-opener for me. I need to scan more as well.

  2. The will & letters are terrific treasures. I have family from Wayne Co, OH also. Their branches were also originally from Switzerland; then PA & on to OH. Good luck with your research.

    1. Hi Colleen ~ so what are your Wayne Co names? I'll have to e-mail you so we can compare. I am finding so many interesting things abut the area. Right now I'm reading "Sonnenberg:A Haven and a Heritage" which is about the area around Kidron.

  3. Ok sooooo maybe I haven't really been that into ALL of your genealogy but I have to say as I've been reading along with your blog it really is pretty fascinating!... No pressure to finish the 52 week challenge but I'm truly enjoying it!

    1. Don't worry Anonymous - I'm here for you!! And I definitely intend to do all 52 weeks. :-)


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.