Posted March 23, 2011
I Found it in the Archives – Honorable Mention pt. 2
I Found it in the Archives!
I started my research in 1999 by going to the OHS Archive Library in Columbus, every Saturday morning for a year. I was never able to find my German families on a census or census index. Conrad KlÃ¼mfel (came to America in 1846) and John Gorenflo (came to America in 1863).
I looked in the index for Gorenflo’s in Marion County, Green Camp Township for months. There was nothing even close to Gorenflo in the index. Same for my KlÃ¼mfel’s in Franklin County. In my research I found that these two families continued to speak German. An obituary of one of the Gorenflo’s gave the name of an English speaking minister, then gave the name of a German speaking minister.
Conrad KlÃ¼mfel’s grandson, William KlÃ¼mfel, spoke German to his wife, when he didn’t want his children to understand, according to his daughter. Conrad’s sons, John and Michael, changed the spelling to Klipfel. Not sure if it was “Americanized” because of the sound, or the confusion of the umlaut.
One day at the OHS library, I had a few extra minutes and just took the Marion County, Green Camp Township 1870s census microfilm reel and started to read every name. On the top of the third page was “Cornflow, John.” The Gorenflo’s spoke German and the enumerator must have heard “Cornflow.” I looked in the 1870 census index to confirm and there they were… “Cornflow.”
So I ran to the 1850 index and immediately found Conrad Clipsel, then in the 1860 index I found Conrad Klipper, and in the 1870 index, there he was… Conrad Clipper!
The censuses were a wonderful source of information, but they could be very tiring.
Carol Berry Galloway, OH