Finding Sophia in 1870: Part II

june-1870I have not made any real headway on locating Sophia (Derle) Trautvetter in the 1870 census despite several different renewed attempts to locate her. What started out as a search for her has turned into a renewed interest in my Trautvetter family of immigrants to Hancock County, Illinois, from Thuringia.

A 1907 biography of Sophia (Derle) Trautvetter’s son George Trautvetter makes a reference to her husband George that may shed some light on the family’s 1870 census entry. The biography indicated that father George returned to Germany in June of 1870. This is the most specific date I have for his return to Germany–previously I had estimated it to be in 1869 after farm ground was sold by George and Sophia to son George.

It’s possible that if George went back in June of 1870 that the household was in flux during that time, particularly since they no longer owned any real property of their own. Theodore was the only unmarried child of Sophia and George in 1870 and he and his mother may have simply been in transition themselves during the time of the census and not enumerated. Sometimes that happens.

And sometimes a biography from 1907 can shed light on events nearly forty years before.

I’ve decided to broaden my focus from Sophia in 1870 and look for the remaining members of the Trautvetter immigrant family during that time period. Perhaps something on one of them will shed light on Sophia during the last ten or so years of her life.



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