In a previous
post (Miller Y-DNA: A minor break-through?) on 14 June 2021, I commented about
information I have about my Miller ancestors, particularly dealing with Y-DNA
In a second
post (What’s new with the Millers?), on 26 October 2021, I described
how I had traced back the ancestors of the only good match with my cousin
Donald Miller to a place called Ilsfeld in Württemberg, Germany. The town of
Ilsfeld is about 20 miles north of Stuttgart where, coincidentally, my son and
his family now live.
confident I have found individuals back to the 7th great-grandfather
of Richard Miller, whose Y-DNA so closely matched Don’s. I still had a problem,
though, with where the 2nd great-grandfather of Donald and me fit
in. I was hopeful that we might see where the two lines branched off, among the
Ilsfeld families, but there was no obvious connection. It seemed like we would
have to go back further.
I recently found
a reference to the Württemberg Emigration Index. This publication
lists the thousands of German and Prussian people that left Germany from the
late 18th century to 1900. Approximately 60,000 people applied to
leave the country during that period. The collection of records includes their
names, date and place of birth, their residence at the time of their
application and the application date. The application dates may have been close
to the time they left. At the same time, I found many notes in baptism
registers that show when people emigrated and the dates match those listed in
was constructed and published in eight volumes, in 1986, by Trudy Shenk, Ruth
Froelke and Inge Bork from the original German government records. As described
on Ancestry, “these records are not alphabetized nor are the pages numbered,
which makes a search through them complicated and time consuming. In many
cases, as many as eight pages were written on one person, including a birth
certificate or a family record, military release, and renunciation of
citizenship rights.” The book was microfilmed by the LDS Church but can be
searched on Ancestry.
individual with the same name as my 2nd great-grandfather and of the
right age was recorded. He is shown as Conradt Mueller, born in Großbottwar, Württemberg
in 1808. His destination was listed as Vienna, but it is entirely possible that
he later decided to travel to America, either directly from Germany or from
I looked at
the baptism record for Großbottwar and found him shown as Johann Conrad Müller.
Seeing his full name was even more exciting and gave me confidence I was on the
1808 birth/baptism record for Johann Conrad Müller
There is a
slight discrepancy with the birth dates shown on the two records, but they are
close enough to suggest the emigration entry might have been mis-transcribed.
The baptism entry says he was born on February 4th
and baptized on
. His forename likely did not contain a ‘t’. The
transcription is probably in error in that regard as well.
is only about four miles from Ilsfeld, the home of Richard Miller’s ancestors.
It is not out of the realm of possibilities that the families were spread
across neighbouring parishes.
Conrad Müller’s Ancestral Line
Conrad’s father was Johann Adam Müller and his
mother was Loisa Dorothea Weiglin. Johann Adam’s occupation was zimmermann, or
house carpenter, as were most of Johann Conrad’s forebears. From other records,
Loisa Dorothea’s father was found to be Johann Conrad, so the child may have
been named for his grandfather.
had the right family, I went ahead to trace back Johann Conrad’s predecessors,
starting in Großbottwar.
Adam Müller (1770-1821) and Loisa Dorothea (1773-1828) Weiglin were married in Großbottwar on 27
September 1796. They had 15 children, however only four reached adulthood.
Johann Conrad was the seventh child. A previous child was also named Johann
Conrad. He was born on 10 January 1799 and died on 16 May 1800. The high rate
of deaths of children was observed for many families in both the Ilsfeld and Großbottwar
areas suggesting living conditions in the region were poor.
marriage record shows their marriage date, birth dates and their fathers’
names. Johann Adam’s death record shows his birth date, his parents’ names
(including his mother’s maiden name), his spouse’s name (including her maiden
name) and his father’s occupation. All this data, of course, helped in
identifying the next generation upstream.
1796 marriage record for Johann Adam Müller
& Loise Dorothea Weiglin
1821 death record for Johann Adam Müller (aged
50 years, 5 months, 24 days)
Adam’s parents were Adam Müller (1734-1807) and Catharina Magdalena
Riegertin (1731-1804). They were married in Großbottwar on 14 February 1764
and had five children there. Only three lived past toddlerhood.
marriage record shows their marriage date, father’s names and even Catharina’s
death date. Adam’s death record shows his death date, his occupation, and his
age at death (years, months, days). Catharina’s death record showed similar
information. This data allowed me to tie Adam to the next generation.
1764 marriage record for Adam Müller &
Catharina Magdalena Riegertin
1807 death record for Adam Müller (aged 73 years,
3 months, 15 days)
parents were Johann Jacob Müller (1702-1747) and Maria Barbara Fincken
(1705-1783). They were married in Großbottwar on 12 February 1726 and had eight
children. I have not yet found Adam’s death record or the birth and death
records for Maria Barbara. They may have left the area after the birth of their
marriage record shows their marriage date, fathers’ names, Johann Jacob’s
occupation as well as the dates of Maria Barbara’s second marriage and her
1726 marriage record for Johann Jacob Müller
& Maria Barbara Fincken
1747 death record for Johann Jacob Müller (aged
44 years, 6 months)
Jacob’s parents were Hans or Johann Jacob Müller (1676-1737) and Maria
Catharina Schleicher. They were married in Oberstenfeld on 13 February
1700. Baptism records show they had three children. Birth and death data for Maria
Catharina has not yet been found.
1700 marriage record for Hans Jacob Müller &
Maria Catharina Schleicher
1737 death record for Johann Jacob Müller
marriage record for Hans Jacob and Maria Catharine shows his father as Hans
Martin and her father as Claus. Neither have been found in the Großbottwar registers
yet. It is certainly possible they migrated into the area.
familial relationships were interpreted from information in the BMD registers.
Birth/baptism entries often have death information if the individual stayed in
the area. Marriage entries commonly have the names of parents as well as the
dates of births of the bride and groom. Some death records also record the
parents’ and spouses’ names as well as birth dates. Within a parish it is thus
possible to reconstruct families over several generations.
families can be found in many areas around Ilsfeld and Großbottwar, although
those two appear to have had the largest concentration. I have been through the
registers for several of them, looking for interfamilial relationships. The
families may well be related or at least derive from some common ancestors,
however that cannot be, or at least has not yet been demonstrated. I did find
that Müller men often married women from other parishes. And there is some
reason to believe that some families moved around, not just to foreign lands.
the complete BMD entries back to the turn of the 18th century, I
have not been able to tie together the ancestral lines of Donald (and me) and
comparison of ancestral lines now looks like this…
I (for Donald’s sample) are both having a fuller analysis of the Y-DNA done –
the “Big Y”.
As Family Tree DNA states, the Big Y analysis is meant to “explore
deep ancestral links on our common paternal tree. This test examines thousands
of known branch markers as well as millions of places where there may be new
branch markers. The Big Y test is intended for users with an interest in
advancing science. It may also be of great interest to genealogy researchers of
a specific lineage.” I am hoping that we might be able to find out how far
back the mutations happened and give us a better idea of who our common
ancestor might have been
More to come…