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Saturday, May 28, 2016

Comments and Questions from Dr. John Staples

Dr. John Staples writes the following and asks for specific information from our readers...

I found my way to this email address from your wonderful Cornies geneology website, but I'm not quite certain whom to address myself to.

My main purpose in writing is to thank you. I have been trying to figure out how to subscribe to, or post to, your site so I could express my thanks there, but I can't quite figure it out. 

As you may know, I'm a historian, and working on a biography of Johann Cornies (the 1789-1848 Johann). The project is pretty far advanced, and as I've been trying to pin down some of the details of the family history your site has helped me tremendously.

If I could figure out how to post I would offer a tidbit of information that doesn't appear on your site, suggest a source that doesn't seem to have been exploited by genealogists and ask a couple of questions:

1. My tidbit: the date of death of Maria Cornies, wife of Johann Martin Cornies. According to her son Johann, she was buried on the 17th of July, 1833 (Julian), or 29 July (Gregorian). He doesn't give the date of birth, but it was probably roughly 4 days earlier. (This comes from Transformation on the Southern Ukrainian Steppe: Letters and Papers of Johann Cornies. Volume I: 1812-1835, document 373, pp. 330-31). 

2. My untouched source: There is a large collection of papers from the family of Philip and Agnes Wiebe (Johann's daughter) in the Braun archive. These contain personal correspondence that has, as far as I know, never been looked at. I hope to have a close look at it later this summer, and if you are interested I'd be happy to let you know what I find.

3. Question 1: Does anyone know when Heinrich (b. 1806) died? This always get left blank.

4. Question 2: Does anyone know anything about Johann's wife, Agnetha nee Klassen? The author of the Halbstadt cloth mill, Johann Klassen, sometimes calls Johann "brother," and I'd love to know if he was Agnes' brother. I also wonder if the Ohrloff miller Klassen, for whom Johann worked briefly around 1807-08, might have been her father?

Thanks again for your site.


Dr. John Staples, Ph.D.
Department of History
State University of New York at Fredonia

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