Monday, July 12, 2010

Children of Salomea Siegler Ruch – A Dilemma Developing

The Question: How many children were born to Salomé, aka Selma.

From my personal experience within the family, interviews with children and/or spouses of Selma’s children and results of my genealogical research thus far, I can account for 10 children.
Nine with her first husband, Charles Ruch:
  1. Eva Salomea born 09 Sep 1873 in Erie, PA
  2. Caroline Magdalena “Lena” born 09 Sep 1873 in Erie, PA
  3. Louise Julia “Julia” born 21 Nov 1874 in Erie, PA
  4. Lisette Emma “Emma” born 21 Nov 1874 in Erie, PA
  5. Charles John Emil “Charlie” born 18 Jul 1876 in Chicago, IL
  6. Mary Anna born 21 Nov 1878 in Chicago, IL
  7. Margaret “Maggie” born 24 Mar 1882 in Chicago, IL
  8. Alice born 24 Mar 1882 in Chicago, IL
  9. George Henry 29 Dec 1885 in Chicago, IL
 Charles died 10 Dec 1888.

Selma remarried to Gottfried Wiedemann on 06 Apr 1889.
She had one child with her second husband:
  1. Henry born 27 Feb 1890 in Chicago, IL
She divorced Gottfried in June of 1892.

She remarried to Anton Ziebel on 15 Jul 1893.
She divorced him on 11 May 1899.
No children were born to this union.

A dilemma is now coming to light. Of course, one cause of this dilemma may be the missing 1890 Federal Census!! On the 1880 census, Charles and Salomea are listed with 6 children – the same as numbers 1-6 above.

I only recently was able to find Salomé on the 1900 and 1910 censuses. She is listed as “Salma Rush” in 1900 and as “Salma Roch” in 1910. In 1900 only the two youngest boys are still living at home. (Henry is also listed with her same last name.)

So, big deal you say!! We all know spelling and hand writing make census research interesting. Yes, but that’s not my problem. My problem is that on both of these censuses she is listed as having 12 children with 9 nine living. (Alice died of 15 Feb 1899.) The numbers are clear and reported the same way 10 years apart. I’m pretty sure the information would have been given to the census takers by Selma herself as she is listed as the landlady in 1900 and with no occupation in 1910. She was most likely home. Who would know better than she how many children she had?

This will be a toughie as I’ve never heard a hint of more children – another set of twins? But then no one ever mentioned Henry either until I found evidence of him. (My father-in-law just knew there was a Henry hanging around a lot but never knew Henry was his half-Uncle.)

Salomé’s probate papers are no help here even though I have transcripts of the testimony given by George (No. 9). When asked “How many children were born of their [Charles & Salomé] marriage?” George replied, “Eight” and proceeded to name children 1-7 & 9 above. He did later name Henry when asked about the second marriage. Perhaps he misunderstood the question, thinking they were only asking about living children.

I’ll continue to work with what I have while writing the story. If I’m able to resolve this issue, wonderful; if not, I’ll just have to address it in the publication and give someone else the opportunity to search. 

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