I solved a ‘brick wall’ in the cemetery!
by Barbara Perez
My Dad told me his Grandmother Brockman was born in Holland and I believed him. Maria Magdalena “Lena” Luchsinger, my second great-grandmother was born in Switzerland in 1851 and emigrated to Omaha, Nebraska. I found her marriage to Abraham Knoble, born 1842 in the same Canton in Switzerland. They married in Omaha in 1872 and had a daughter, Maria Magdalena Knoble two years later and a second daughter a year later. Maria was my great-grandmother.
Then my research lead to the early 1900 census records and I discover her married to Peter Brockman and the birth of four more daughters. My father never knew his great-grandmother was married before to Abraham.
So, what had happened to Abraham Knoble? I knew I was a diligent researcher. I found no divorce, no death record and never found him on any census records or returning to Switzerland. Every few years I would throw the name out there to no avail.
Then several years back the name appears on Find A Grave, or maybe not. The name on the marker says Abraham Knoble Aged 33, with no year of death and is in a cemetery about 100 miles outside of Omaha in Columbus, Nebraska.
I was not to be detoured, with a magnifying glass, I noticed some small writing at the base of the stone. It was a brass plaque, Gass Funeral Home. I had never encountered a funeral home listed on a marker. I called and found the business was still owned by the same family from Switzerland. I was calling to inquire about an internment with a name and no date and maybe not my 2nd great-grandfather. Within a very short time, I had some more hints, the year was 1875, over 140 years earlier and the name of a Lutheran Church where the service was held. I called the church and I was on the right path. They had more information and sent me a very long newspaper article about the accidental drowning death of Abraham Knoble.
My great-grandmother was a year old when her father died and six months later her mother gave birth to her sister. Lena returned to Omaha and raised six daughters. She lived the last twenty years of her life as the widow of Peter Brockman and is interned with him in Omaha.
Daddy called these two women Grandmother Brockman.
20 July 1842 Glarus, Switzerland
29 May 1875 Columbus, Nebraska