Leverenz Family

Portland, Oregon

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Family Ancestry & Genealogy
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Family Memorial Pages
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Rick Leverenz Memorial Website

Family photos are no longer just in a shoebox or a family album under the coffee table. Family photos are everywhere - in your iPhone, on your computer, posted to social networking sites like Instagram, Facebook or Flickr. It seems difficult to keep tabs on where all our images are going.

Remembering Our Family Veterans: The War of 1812

Remembering Our Family Veterans: The War of 1812

Our 5th Great Grandfather, Richard Samuel Wood was a veteran of the War of 1812, fighting against the British and their Native American allies in the Battle of the Thames in 1813. He was mustered on August 30th, 1813 at Newport, Kentucky and served in Captain Mason Singleton's Company, Colonel George Trotter's First Regiment from Kentucky.

For those of you who need a refresher on the War of 1812, The Battle of the Thames occured when British troops had occupied Detroit until the US Navy gained control of Lake Erie, leaving them without supplies. The British and their Native American allies, The Shawnee, were forced to retreat north, up the Thames River to Moraviantown. The American forces, under the command of William Henry Harrison (our future president), drove off the British and defeated the Shawnee, which in the ensuing battle their leader, Tecumseh, was killed.

Richard Wood was born in 1781 in Amherst County, Virginia where he grew up on the banks of the James River. It was here that Richard met and married 5th Great Grandmother, Celia Gregory in 1803. 

In 1800 there were only two states west of the Appalachians — Kentucky and Tennessee. Early starters in the The Great MIgration west, in 1806, Richard and Celia moved to Prestonville, Gallatin County, Kentucky located on the south bank of the Ohio River. Here they farmed and had ten children, including our 4th great grandmother, Sarah who was born in 1808. (Sarah went on to marry Matthias Williams)

In 1818, the moved once again westward to what was then the American Frontier Ridge Prairie, Madison County, Illinois, just NE of St Louis. Soon after the move, three of their children, Martha, Elizabeth and Richard all died from billious fever. Then, in November of 1819, Celia also died of billious fever, leaving Richard with 7 children to raise.  Sarah, was just 11 years old at the time. 

In the 1820 Federal Census, Richard Wood, now a widower, was living in Ridge Prairie, Madison County, Illinos, located just NE of St Louis. He was living between Isaac Conley and the widow of his brother Rev. John Conley, Hester "Hessie" Conley. 

The following year, on January 1, 1821, widower Richard married his widowed next door neighbor, Hessie Conley.

In March 1826, Richard and Hessie moved about 80 miles  south, to Morgan County, Illinois in March, 1826.  Here, they raised their families over the next 40 years, where his 2nd wife, Hessie, died in September, 1861. Our War of 1812 veteran, Richard Wood, died June 20th, 1865, at the age of 84. 

Morgan County, Illinois


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The Christopherson Quandary

The Christopherson Quandary

Angie's paternal grandfather, Cherrolf "Chips" Olaf Christopherson was born in 1910 in Angus, Minnesota, but that was about all we knew. She did not have the  names of his parents, or any of his siblings, except one, Hank, who worked with him on Bainbridge Island at the creosote plant.

For years she could not find anything about them and online results came as dead ends. Until recently, when Ancestry.com updated and improved the algorithms for AncestryDNA. One of the matches that came up was for a 3rd cousin that she'd never seen before, with 792 people in her family tree AND it was unlocked. The only shared surname was "Christopherson", so in reviewed her family tree, we found only two Christophersons... Hans Christopherson, born in Norway in 1859 and Tena Christopherson, born in 1894 in Angus, Polk County, Minnesota. Tena passed away in Seattle on (coincidently), Angie's 10th birthday March 20th, 1973. Digging further into Tena's family tree, we were able to view the 1910 Federal Census that was attached to her profile and found a Henry Christopherson, four years of age living in the household. When I read her the other names, "Mable, Howard, Clarence.." "Wait", she said, "Clarence, I remember a Clarence."

Yes, but there was no Cherrolf. Pondering the situation, we realized that the census was taken on April 15, 1910 and Cherrolf was born in October.

So, onto the 1920 census for further investigation. In the same county, but a different town, Brandt, we found Henry, Clarence and Jerrold, but no Cherrolf. Knowing that census takers sometime made mistakes with difficult names, we figured that the "Jerrold" was indeed "Cherrolf" as he was exactly shown as 9 years old. Bingo. 

Several hours later we were able to paint, with a wide brush, Cherrolf's family tree. His father, Hans, had arrived in America in 1882 at the age of 25. 

He found his way to Polk Couty, Minnesota and married Anna Bertina Christianson, also from Norway. She was 10 years his senior. The had four children, Carter, Anna, Oscar and Tena. Tena was the sibling we found in that AncestryDNA match. On further research we found Anna Bertina had passed away and he married a 2nd time in 1894-96 range (yet to be verified) to Anna Olson. Anna was also from Norway, born in 1876. The had eight sons, starting with Howard who was born in 1900, followed by Clarence, Francis, Henry (Hank), Raymond,  Cherrolf (Chips), Kenneth and Ellsworth. 

So far, we have found that six of the eight boys all relocated from Minnesota to the Seattle area, and all the brother's children lived in the Seattle area, too.

We're still working on finding the cousins and contacting the AncestryDNA match from Ancestry.com, but we're well on the way to filling out the branches of the Christopherson tree.

Hans Christopherson Family Tree


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The Mystery of Jones Vs *Jones

The Mystery of Jones Vs *Jones

Our 3rd Great Grandfather (or 2nd Great Grandfather for the older generation), Jacob L Jones, was born in 1850, in the county seat of Cadiz, Harrison County, Ohio the the third child of parents Daniel Jones and his wife Margaret Riegel Jones. Daniel was working as a "house carpenter" and living next door to Margaret's parents, Jacob and Anna Reigel, along with the Riegel's twelve children. 

When the family moved West the 800 miles from Ohio, west to Madison County, Iowa they landed in Jefferson Township where farming became a way of life. Jacob's future wife, Barabra Gutshall lived in the area where her father was one of the first settler's in the Jefferson area.

Jacob married Barbara in 1872 and they lived and farmed in the area where their four children were born, Ida, Aletha (Letha), Primrose and son George. I've not yet tracked down when Barbara died, but it was some time between 1879 and 1884, when Jacob married his 2nd wife, Anna Margaret *Jones, who was 8 years his junior. I've added an asterisk to the non-blood related Joneses to help keep which Jones is which.

Anna's family had lived in Iowa for several years prior, her uncle being on of the first white settlers in the area. Anna's parents, George Worth *Jones and Hanna Maple had also migrated from Ohio to Iowa several years prior to our Jones Family. George and Hanna had ten children. George had been married twice prior to marrying Hanna, but I've been unable to deterime if they had any children. While Anna was the oldest of the 10 children, the second born was son Theodore "Thede" Charles *Jones, who was just one year younger than Anna. 

When Jacob married Anna in 1884, they had eight children, Sylvia Faye, Jacob Earl, Carl Oliver, Zelma Belle, Gladys Anna, Vera Jenney, William Wallace and Hannah Luenne. The two oldest children were born in Nebraska and the rest were born in Madison County, Iowa.

Technically, when Jacob had his second family from a *Jones, all the children became blood-related Joneses as they are half siblings to Ida, Letha, Primrose and George.

Then, it happened. 

This is where it gets confusing. 

Anna's brother, Theordore "Thede" *Jones married Jacob and Margaret's daughter, Ida. So, essentially, Ida married her step-uncle. 

Thede and Ida eventually settled and lived on the Jones Ranch in Dawson County. They had six children, Bessie Lenore (married Burtch), Letha Mae (who died at age 16), Theodore Clinton, Jessie Joy (married Sutton), Hope Ida (married Tripp) and Rose Priscilla (who die at age 1). 

With Ida's maiden name being Jones and her married name being *Jones, all their children, while by birth are *Jones from their father's name, by blood due to their mother Ida being a blood related Jones, are really Joneses, of the non *Jones type.

Hopefully this helps explain the confusion of Jones vs *Jones.

Below is a diagram showing the connection between the two families

Jones Family Tree Chart


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