Liblady's Genealogy Blog

Uncle Henry
September 28, 2013, 9:57 am
Filed under: Voss
Henry Voss

Henry 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.


Kenneth’s 75 Surprise Party
July 2, 2013, 4:12 pm
Filed under: Personal History, Voss

Kenneth’s 75th Birthday

Invitation to Kenneth's 75

Invitation to Kenneth’s 75

Several months prior to April, Melba and I were invited to a surprise party for Kenneth.  He was going to be 75 years old on April 21.  His daughters, Step and Shay, helped Billie plan this party. Plans were made for Melba and me to fly out to Portland, but how were we going to stay out of sight from Friday evening until Sunday noon.  Coming to our rescue was a cousin (not a first) who lived in the area. I had been in contact with her through Facebook, she had mentioned several times she wanted to get in touch with Kenneth.


Tom and Willorene

Willorene and her husband, Tom were gracious, letting us stay with them, then they took us to party where they met Kenneth and his family.

Melba’s daughter, Creta drove us to Burlington, Colorado, where another daughter, Caylia and her husband Frank, picked us up, driving us to the airport.  Tom and Willorene were there at Portland to pick us up.

Saturday we enjoyed visiting with Tom and Willorene, catching up on family and talking genealogy.


Here’s my pitch!

That afternoon, their grandson was playing ball, so we went to the park and watched a combination pitcher, coach pitch game for these young boys.

It gave Melba and me  an opportunity to meet Willorene’s daughters, a son-in-law, a granddaughter and 2 grandsons.

Sunday we drove from Beaverton, WA to Church of the Good Shepherd Church in Vancouver, Washington. Since it was a surprise we had to stay out of sight until party time.  When Ken’s family arrived at the church, they were surprised because the partition that divided the sanctuary from the fellowship area (where the party was to take place) was open.  Kenneth was the lay reader for the service, so he could see into the area.  So some of the decorations didn’t get put up until after the morning service was over.  There was a crowd, friends and family other than his church family,  in the choir room awaiting the service to be over, so they could gather in the fellowship hall.  Tom and Willorene gathered with as we greeted, Shannon, and Syrus, Steve, and other friends.

Of course, Kenneth was oblivious to any thing going on.  He hadn’t put together why Billie had so many phone calls from the “Altar Guild”.  (She had only recently gotten her own cell phone.) He didn’t have to count money after services and was ready to head out for dinner with Billie for his birthday.  Interruptions kept coming up,  as they were ready to leave, Billie remembered she need to get something from the hall.  They called out surprise, and Kenneth told us, there was this person who looked like his daughter from Texas, but she had called that morning to wish him “Happy Birthday”, she came up and gave him a hug.


This is my daughter from Texas.
How did she get here?

Then he turned around and thought that looks like my son from Texas, he was just here a few days ago.  It took a couple minutes to register that Step and Shannon were there to surprise him.  Also there were,  his daughter, Shay and grandson, Syrus, they live in the area.   Also, sons-in-law Jon Gower and Steve Alexander were attending.

Melba and I waited in the choir room until after they were able to get fellowship hall ready, and surprise Kenneth.  After we heard the call “Surprise”, I waited a couple of minutes to call Kenneth on his cell.


Dad, I think your phone is ringing.

He couldn’t  get it out in time to answer, but since it was his sister, he called back,  knowing she was calling to wish him “Happy Birthday”. He called me back, and then  proceeded to try to get me off the phone.

I wished him “Happy Birthday”, then tried to ask him “What would like for your birthday?  How about your sisters?” I repeated it about 3 times as we walked into the hall.


In disbelief – My sisters from Kansas are here

Finally he was turned around and his chin hit the floor as he realized  his sisters were there.  (Later, Kenneth told us, he had been totally surprised to see his daughter, from Texas, and his son, also from Texas).  He was speechless.

Family, friends, church family, and co-workers had gathered to help him with this celebration.  A light lunch along with cake was served.  After most of the people had been served, a video of photos of Kenneth and his family over the 75 years was shared.

Shannon and Step honor Dad

Shannon and Step honor Dad

Before the video, Step and Shannon each had to say a few words.

Shay let them do it. Before you knew, it was time to wrap up and head home.

Syrus, Shay and Shannon

Syrus, Shay and Shannon

Now I'm comfortable.  As he opens cards and gifts, he has stories to tell.

Now I’m comfortable. As he opens cards and gifts, he has stories to tell.

At home, the first thing Ken did was to get out of his suit and get comfortable.  We visited, and he opened his presents, and cards.  Melba and I remained to spend a couple of days before we returned home.   He was completely surprised and it lasted for a couple of days. Had a good time visiting with the family that came back to the house.

Our trip home was another experience.  We had a delay because Denver had snow, then because of snow, we spent the night with Caylia and Frank, got to see their children and grandchildren.



The Voss Family


Shay, Shannon, Billie, Kenneth, Stepanie
on April 21, 2013

The Voss Clan


Alex and Shay, Shannon, Billie & Kenneth Stepanie and Jon

Kenneth and Sisters


Melba, Kenneth and Karen

Family attending:

Children : Step and Jon, Shannon, Shay and Steve    Sisters: Melba and Karen       Grandson: Syrus    Cousins: Willorene and Tom     Billie’s Family:  Sisters: Kathy and husband, Jerry , Charlene   Nieces: Vonnie, Shelley and her husband, Bob

Unable to attend: Daughter-in-law -Debbie, Grandson – Devin and Granddaughter – Dani

Family Reunions
June 10, 2013, 8:55 am
Filed under: Langston, Personal History, Voss

I have not followed through on my plans for 2013.  At this point I need to regroup and start again.

Over the last month I have traveled and been involved in a number of family reunions with one more to go.  So far I have been to a surprise birthday party, a family gathering on Memorial Weekend, and then a Family Reunion in Henderson, Ark. with the Langston Reunion coming up in Wild Cherry, and meeting other family members in Calico Rock.

After I get back, I will try to recap each of these as they each include different branches of the family.

Pictures to be included.

Now I have a list of pictures to find, and others projects for relatives I met over the weekend.

You must remember that attending these activities were the Voss family, Kenneth, his wife, Billie, Melba and myself.  Meeting with Voss family, DeWitt family, Dipman family and I will be attending the Langston Family reunion coming up.


My Plans for 2013
January 3, 2013, 2:21 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

My plans for 2013

Another year has past.  I did not have the energy to work on my blog last year.  I dealt with several health issues, they took a lot out of me.  It was also a year, I had to depend on others a great deal, for a person who has always been independent, this was hard.  But was very grateful for those who were willing to help me.

A rainbow is like a friend, always there after the storm.

Amish Proverb

This year I want to blog about the 50 states – telling what I have seen if I have been there, or reasons why I would like to visit the state.  Currently, I have touched all of the western states, with California, the state I have only driven through Needles, and back out, with plans to cruise to Hawaii in 2014.  The Dakotas, the southern states, the very northeastern states, and the Carolinas are the states I have not had the opportunity to visit.

So over the next year, I plan on working through state by state, starting with Kansas, as it is my home state.

I plan to continue working on the Langston family, as my cousin and I are the current editors of “The Langston Family and Kinsmen Newsletter”.  We will be publishing the first issue for year 36.  A great deal of information has been included in this newsletter over the years.

I also would like to get back to work on the Weisleder family, as well as the Grossman and Voss families.

Also during this year I will be working on a history for the United Methodist Church of Larned, which will celebrate 140 years in September 2013.  Thankful the first 125 years have been well documented, so I will need to concentrate on the last 15 years. I will also try to get many of the photographs organized.

Hoping to travel to the Family History Library in Salt Lake this spring, and attend a couple of family reunions. I also plan on continuing my volunteer work at the Santa Fe Trail Center, here in Larned.

I hope to have some thing in place that will show my accomplished for the year 2013.

Looking forward to being healthier this year.  At least here at the beginning it is better.

Blessing for a wonderful New Year, with whatever you hope to accomplish.

Current genealogy activities
July 2, 2012, 11:50 am
Filed under: New thoughts

The past several months have been a very interesting time form me.  Health issues, and a pesky cataract have slowed me down, making it hard to make much progress.  After having cataract surgery in June and another one scheduled in Aug, I am now able to more mobile, not having to depend on others to take me places.  I have worked on indexing (about 26,000) most of them for the 1940 Census. I am also working on the Langston Family Tree.  Anticipating a trip to the Buffalo, New York area in the fall to work on the Voss tree, particularly the Weisleader family.

Most of last year was spent digitalizing 34 years of Langston Newsletter.  My cousin, Dedria and I have taken on the task of producing the current newsletter.  Preparing to publish our first issue shortly.

During our last visit, I helped a friend find some information about a great grandfather of her husband.  We were able to find where he was buried.  She called, I helped her find the cemetery again. Several weeks later, the family traveled to Iowa to the cemetery.  Their brick wall was where was his wife buried.  Upon finding the cemetery and the headstone, the picture showed that the headstone had fallen off its base.  I soon received another phone call.  They had picked up the headstone, turned it over and there was the information about the mother.  They were so excited.  Currently I am trying to find a time to visit with family and help them continue with their family journey.  The genealogy bug bite hard.

The Langston Family.

I have started work on the Langston Family.  As I digitalized 34 years of Langston Family Newsletters, I put all of the names into my genealogy software.  The names from the newsletter include family groups, stories, inquiries, birth, marriage and obituaries.  Over 4000 names were included in the database.  I am now trying to work my way through the names, finding last names, duplicates, and connecting families.

I put the tree on Ancestry, privately for now,  to check for documentation.  Now with this many names it is very easy to get distracted, so I am working my way through one name at a time alphabetically.  I will work through all of the names except the Langstons.  When I get to them, I will be 75% finished, as there are over 1000 Langstons.

One of the issues is how much information do you include about the families that married into the Langston family.  I have currently worked my way through the A’s and B’s, ready to start with the C’s.  Looking at the list I have worked with 363 names, occasionally adding information to some other names, but trying to stick to my plan of working through the alphabet.

I know this task will take some time, but hopefully I will have a family tree I feel I can go back and follow the family lines.  I have started with Caleb Langston who had several sons, 3 of which migrated to Arkansas in the early 1800’s.  I can trace my lineage back to 3 of Caleb’s sons.

I also need to start getting things organized for my trip to Buffalo and the questions I would like to have answered when I get there. The lastest issue of Family Tree Magazine has a city guide for genealogists.

Will post again after I have gotten through a couple more letters.

Update on 1940 Census
May 9, 2012, 3:39 pm
Filed under: 1940 Census

I worked on the state of Kansas at first, as that is where I would find my parents.  So exciting that is it one of the first states available for searching, but it need to continue.  I have worked on Montana, Michigan and Arkansas.  Montana is close to being ready for search, while Michigan and Arkansas have a ways to go.When these 3 become close to ready I will pick another 3 states, and keep working until this project is complete.

I am currently concentration on Arkansas, as I would like to be able to locate my mother’s family when it becomes searching.  I have indexed almost 18000 names since the 40’s Census became available.  A couple of interesting things  a 15 year old with a year old baby married to a 74 year old man.  What is the story behind this marriage? I can think of several scenario’s.  The names are always so interesting.  Reading some of the handwriting is quite a challenge.  There have been a few times I have looked back on the 1930’s census to check on the family, to find out how the name is spelled.

Montana is where my father’s mother will be indexed, his father died in 1938 so he will not be on the 1940’s Census.  Michigan is where my grandmother’s family lived before moving on to Buffalo, New York.  Missouri and Indiana will be places to look for my husband’s family.  So I am anxious for the indexing to be completed so I can research some family members.

Although this is not apart of the Census, have made contact with a distant cousin, who wants to share some pictures and information on my mother’s side.  But this is a very busy weekend, with graduation and time with friends, probably won’t get to much indexing done for the next several days.  Was glad to see more states have become searchable.  ONWARD and UPWARD and soon it will be complete.

1940 Census – day 4-5
April 6, 2012, 9:15 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The past two days have been very busy, as other activities made it difficult for me to work on the Census.  But I will keep plugging away.  I have done another 500 the past couple of days.  I was able to find my great grandmother Sophronia Sanders living with her son Loranzia Sanders and his wife Bertie.  His sister Ellen Pruitt was also living with them. They were in Izard, Union County the surrounding area.

Another couple day will be busy as I will attend the celebration of my sister’s 75th birthday, with her family.  And as celebrating another Easter.

I will see how much I can get indexed this next week.




%d bloggers like this: