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All my ancestors come from Kolb, Russia. When I was in the 6th grade, my teacher went one-by-one around the classroom and asked us, "Where did your family come from? My family came from Norway and England." When he came to me, I said, "Russia." There was a gasp of horror from my fellow classmates – 1951, the Cold War, air-raid drills, fear of the Russians bombing us, etc. The teacher quieted the class and let me explain, "They were Germans living in Russia, and they came to our country for freedom from the Bolsheviks." That was the beginning.
Nowadays, I research the village of Kolb, Russia and my family names in particular, although I help others to find their ancestors as well. Ancestor surnames: Adler/Meininger/Jugert, Miller/Thaut, Vogel, Schreiner, Kanzler, Barth, Reiber.
With local obituaries in hand, my son and I have researched, photographed grave markers, traveled to 11 local cemeteries and, and recorded over 1000+ graves, most coming from Kolb and its surrounding villages. It has been a labor of love!
I am currently helping my son research his dad's family history - family names Jarret, Landry, Benoit, and Fontaine for starters. I'm just learning that the French had large families, just like my Germans, and this is going to take awhile.
My interests outside of my family are Seabees, Mariners baseball,crocheting pineapple doilies, and adding "flowers" to memorials I visit. So, please leave a "flower" for the memorials you visit - a little bit of sunshine to put a smile in someone's heart. Thank you.