Something I Never Expected to See

I want to share two documents that I thought I’d never see.  In preparing for our upcoming trip to Germany, I’ve been trying to find guides who can help me in the various places we plan to visit.  One of those guides is a man named Aaron.  Although Aaron is based in Cologne and will be our guide while we are there, he also asked where else we were visiting and whether we needed any help finding records.

I mentioned to him that probably the one place I had had the worst luck finding any records—online or elsewhere—was Schopfloch, the small town in Bavaria where my Nussbaum ancestors once lived.  Some of you may recall that all I had were the notes left behind by a researcher named Angelika Brosig, who died in 2013.  Angelika had a lot of information about the birthdates of the children of Amson Nussbaum and Voegele Welsch, my four-times great-grandparents, including a name and birthdate for my three-times great-grandfather, Josua Nussbaum, who became John Nusbaum in the United States.  I knew these facts were accurate because they were consistent with the information in the Nussbaum family bible kept first by my three-times great-grandmother Jeanette Dreyfuss Nusbaum and later by my great-grandmother Eva May Seligman Cohen.  But I had no images or transcriptions of original records

Even after contacting several people who knew Angelika Brosig and had worked with her, I had no luck figuring out where she’d gotten this information.  But Aaron had better luck—he found the death records for my four-times great-grandparents, Amson and Voegele.  This gives me hope that perhaps other records exist and that someday I may find them.

Death record of Voegelein Nussbaum

Death record of Voegelein Welsch Nussbaum, October 2, 1842

As transcribed and translated by Leon and Cathy from the German Genealogy group on Facebook, this says:

Vogelein Nussbaum, Wittwe des Amson Nussbaum, geb. Welsch, stirbt in einem Alter von 60 Jahren und 7 Monaten plötzlich am Schleimschlag Sonntag Abends am zweiten /2/ Oktober 1/2 5 Uhr 1842, und wird beerdigt Tags drauf am 3. dess. Abends 5 Uhr. Arzt wird nicht gebraucht. No. 132.

Vögelein Nussbaum, widow of Amson Nussbaum, born Welsch, dies at the age of 60 years and 7 months suddenly due to mucoid impaction on Sunday evening on 2nd October, half before 5 o’clock, 1842, and is buried on the next day in the evening 5 o’clock. Doctor is not needed.


Death record of Amson Meier Nussbaum, 1837

Death record of Amson Meier Nussbaum, June 7, 1836

Leon and Cathy translated Amson’s death record to say:

Amson (Meier) Nussbaum, merchant, here no. 132, married, consumption, 8th this evening at 8 o’clock, 58 years old.

Thank you to Aaron for his persistence and hard work in locating these records. And thank you also to Leon and Cathy from the Facebook German Genealogy group!  Danke!!

31 thoughts on “Something I Never Expected to See

    • I truly do appreciate it. As I learn more German, I can be more independent, but that German script is still a bear for me. And so I am indebted to you and the others who always are willing to help! And in my own ways, I also try to “pay it forward,” but not with translations!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Gives me hope that perhaps I will find some of those hidden records I have been looking for. Your story gives us all hope. However it is important for people to know that it would not have happen if not for your effort and hard work. So take a little bow yourself.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you, Charles. This time it was really the effort and hard work of Aaron, who even after I told him that there were no records to be found persisted and found them. And yes, do not give up hope!


  2. Well done to you AND Aaron! How have you been able to find guides to help you in your travels? I’ll have to remember to pursue that if I ever get over to Europe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Debi! I have used various methods to find guides—TripAdvisor, JewishGen, and recommendations from other genealogy folks. I found Aaron through a woman in Cologne who helped me find the graves for Jakob and Charlotte. It’s all the good people in the genealogy world!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Amy, the times of digitizing are upon us – advantage for many scholars and family researchers. P.e., cemeteries have been put online completely recently and I was able to surprise descendants in California….

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What a wonderful find, and the documents too. 😉 Sounds like Aaron has been a great help piecing this together, and now you can move forward. Nothing better in the genealogy world, and you are right, there are so many good people willing to help. When are you heading to Germany? Wonderful. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I had to google mucoid impaction. Still not sure I understand it, but fortunate to have the cause of death on a mid-19th century death record. It’s something I wish the Italians had included on their records at that time.

    Liked by 1 person

    • So did I. I never found a very good definition, but Janice Webster Brown of Cow Hampshire Blog ( found this definition from the US National Library of Medicine: “This mucoid impaction sign has been seen in a variety of obstructing conditions, including primary and metastatic carcinoma of the lung, bronchial adenoma, tuberculous bronchostenosis, bronchial adenoma, tuberculous bronchostenosis, broncholithiasis, bronchial atresia, sequestration, pulmonary bronchogenic cyst, and foreign bodies.” She thought it was likely tuberculosis that killed him.


  6. Pingback: My Grandmother’s Cologne Cousins: More New Records | Brotmanblog: A Family Journey

  7. Pingback: Cologne: Its Jewish History and My Family Ties to the City | Brotmanblog: A Family Journey

    • Hi Wendy! We just got back from two weeks away, so my brain is a bit in a fog. Since I relied on Aaron to get these records, I assume they were not available online. But to be honest, I am not sure. I have found that outside of the Hesse region, German records are hard to find online.

      Liked by 1 person

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