Filed under: Voss
1900 – ????
One of the family stories was about my father’s brother Henry Voss. Henry and Hilda Voss were born Jan 18, 1900, in French Town, Monroe, Michigan. Hilda died a few weeks later, 3 Feb 1900, she is buried at Gethsemane Cemetery, Monroe, Michigan. If there was a marker it is no longer there.
Some time after the birth of Henry, the family headed for Montana. According to a story told by his oldest sister, Irene, they traveled to Montana by wagon train.
As a young man Henry married. Following the marriage, there was a charivari. A common activity of the time – to come to the home of the newlyweds. “A chavirari is folk custom in which the community gave a noisy, discordant mock serenade, by pounding on pots and pans, at the home of newlyweds.” Someone died at the chavirari, then Uncle Henry disappeared and nothing was known about what happened to him. This is the story I heard as I was growing up.
When I began searching for records about Henry Voss, I discovered more information concerning the event that was behind the story, I had heard. I found a marriage record for Henry Voss and Evelyn Kast. They married on April 4, 1900. Then through newspaper articles I found out more about the events of the chavirari. The chavirari for the Voss couple turned tragic when the group returned after being sent away. A young man was shot and died. Henry was then tried and found guilty of involuntary man slaughter, and sentenced to one to ten years to the Idaho Penitentiary. Later that year the Idaho Supreme Court granted a retrial.
I had not been able to find out any further information about Henry, Evelyn or the second trial.
The Rest of the story:This summer (2013) my sister and I joined my brother’s family to celebrate the retirement of his son from the Navy. We traveled to San Antonio, Tx for this celebration. While there I did not have my computer, but through my email I received a notice from Ancestry, about some one interested in information concerning Henry Voss. Of course my interest was peaked. Upon my arrival home I made contact with the person making the request.
To my amazement I was being contacted by the granddaughter of Henry Voss, Lynda. We did not know that Henry had a daughter, it was only through my genealogy work I knew the name of his wife. Lynda and I have since been exchanging information. She was waiting to receive documentation about the disposition of the second trial. She shared this information, in 1921 Henry was granted a new trial, and the jury was in disagreement. It was then decided too much money had been spent already, therefore the case was dismissed.
Lynda was able to add information about Evelyn, Henry’s wife, and her mother, Helen. Evelyn remarried, after divorcing Henry in 1927, he disappeared about 1922. My question is, did he know he was going to be a father before he disappeared? It is not known if Helen is still living. When Lynda was about two she was adopted by her grandmother, Evelyn. Henry’s mother did know about the children, but never shared this with other members of the family.
After making contact with Lynda, I then shared this information with my brother and sister, and a cousin, Carl. When I called Carl, he asked where is she living. When I told him, he said “I am in Las Vegas right now.” He called Lynda and they had an opportunity to visit that evening, getting to know each other, and share information. Both have said it was an enjoyable time.
I am planning a trip in January and Las Vegas is on our list, with plans to stop and visit with her. Looking forward to seeing her in person.
You never know when or where you may find new information about your family. Very glad to learn a little more about Henry and his family, and for the addition to my family.