Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Research Train is Chugging Along

I'm busy.

Thus, my own personal genealogy research often gets pushed aside for other things. That's just the way it is.

This afternoon I stole a couple hours for myself. For my sanity.

I spent the little time I had in the Milwaukee City Directories at My "research process" went like this:

Open city directory for 1871. Look for Max Baerecke. If I couldn't find him, look under common misspellings Barecke and Barrecke, too. If he was located, enter residence fact, occupation fact and citations into the database. Repeat these steps with each city directory year until I ran out of time.

I was able to find my third-great grandfather, Max Baerecke in the 1871, 1872, 1873, 1875 and 1876 directories so far.

In 1870, the Max Baerecke family lived in Granville, Wisconsin. In 1871, he shows up in the Milwaukee city directory. Now I have narrowed the time frame for when the family moved to Milwaukee.

Max was listed as a saloonkeeper in all of these directories. Given Milwaukee's history, I'm not surprised. However, his residence and saloon addresses were the same. Was that common? Was the saloon the bottom floor and the family lived on top? 

The directories also showed the Baerecke family living at three different addresses between 1871-1876. They must have started saloons each time, too.

I know how this story ends, I just haven't put it in the database yet. In my search of Milwaukee newspapers, there are several public collection notices for Max and Amelia Baerecke. They eventually went broke in the saloon business.

Next up, I will continue to look up Max and the other Baereckes in the Milwaukee city directories. This helps me track them and narrow down date ranges for deaths. 

Sometimes I feel like the only person in the world researching Baerecke genealogy, and it's lonely out there. But that's a post for another day. Onward.


  1. Ohh, so with you there! - other than a 2nd cousin with 25% overlap with my tree, it's been very lonely researching Deckers & Koesters, Storcks & Solomons, Schwartzes & Reichs. Last 4 arrived 1890-1900 and first 2 1840-1850, so not very deep roots in USA. I need some overseas cousins to find me!

    1. Nancy, I find a strange comfort in our common loneliness. We'll just have to keep on researching and hoping someone will find us. Thanks for the comment. Solitary solidarity...or something like that.

  2. I hear you as well. I feel my Smiths, Browns, Townsends, Hoppes, Geiszlers, and Macks are mine alone, though several relatives are happy to see what I find.

    Someone I hope to find notices about my family in Columbus, Ohio newspapers. Free time to flip through pages isn't available with little ones underfoot. But with numerous ancestors with 'money problems' as well, your post gave me an idea of other things to look for. Just wanted to say thanks for the tip.

  3. A house with living quarters up top and a saloon on the bottom is a common sight in Milwaukee, then and now. In fact, I chuckled when I read that, because I didn't realize I'd lived in Milwaukee so long that that no longer seems weird to me.

    The Town of Granville was pretty far out in the boonies in those days. A small part of Glendale (the suburb where I lived until last summer) is in that township. It's now mostly City of MIlwaukee, with a little bit of Village of Brown Deer.