Monthly Archives: March 2015

Discovering Martyrs


When I asked my paternal grandmother where her side of the family originated, I was told we were German, Irish, and English. In my research, I found that she was mostly correct. However, I traced one branch of her family tree to an area that she was unaware of. I came across the names of “Hess” and “Meili” as I journeyed through the generations. Both of these family lines find their beginnings in Switzerland. Digging deeper, I discovered Hans Jacob Hess. Continue reading Discovering Martyrs

The Genetic World is Small


Do you ever have those synchronistic moments when you know that you just experienced something prolific or are about to?  When an ordinary experience catches you off guard with its extraordinariness?  I was fortunate to have one of these special moments last week in the break room at work. I work in the same building with another genealogist enthusiast.   Occasionally we bump into each other in the shared kitchen, and share a brief summary of the genealogy discoveries that we have had since our last encounter.  Well, this week our updates took a very interesting turn when we realized that we possible shared a genetic cousin. Continue reading The Genetic World is Small

Clan Cameron



When I first began researching my husband’s family, he made the joke that I had better not dig too deep or I might find out we are related. I quipped back that we are all related if you go back far enough. I knew, though, that the chance of our families having intersected at any point in history was slim. I have traced both sides of my family extensively. They settled in the Midwest and remained there for several hundreds of years. My husband’s family is from Canada and the Pacific Northwest. I was fairly certain we would have no ancestors in common. Once again, genealogy surprised me. Continue reading Clan Cameron

How did my Loos Line Come to Wisconsin?

Back row: Frank X, Helena, Conrad, Matthias, Josephina, Dorothea. Seated: Matthias, Albert, Herman, Maria Theresea (Moerchen) Front: Regina, Ida. Photo from Rose Mohnsom via
Back row: Frank X, Helena, Conrad, Matthias, Josephina, Dorothea. Seated: Matthias, Albert, Herman, Maria Theresea (Moerchen) Front: Regina, Ida. Photo from Rose Mohnsom via

The ancestor that brought my Loos family to Wisconsin is the same ancestor that brought my Loos family to America, Matthias Loos.  He is the grandfather of Frank X Loos, and is my 3rd great grandfather. According to the 1870 and 1880 U.S. Census’, Matthias was born in Hessen Darmstadt, Germany around 1821. I have not found a birth record for Matthias, but his marriage to Anna Marie Mueller was documented at the Catholic Church in Erbes Budesheim November 29, 1845.  Erbes Budesheim is in Hessen Darmstadt and is likely also the village that he was born in.  The parents of both the bride and groom was included in the marriage record. Anna Marie’s parents are Christian Mueller and Elizabeth Neumeyer from Bavaria, and Matthias’ parents are Frederici Loos and Anna Maria Schumacher from Erbes Budesheim. Continue reading How did my Loos Line Come to Wisconsin?

St. Patrick’s Day


Having Irish ancestry on both my paternal and maternal sides, Irish customs and holidays are important to me. In the United States, Irish ancestry is common due to the vast migration of Irish citizens to America. This could be why St. Patrick’s Day is such a widely celebrated event, even though it is not an American holiday. I wonder how many St. Patrick’s Day revelers know the celebration’s origins, though, or know exactly why they are celebrating. Continue reading St. Patrick’s Day

Connecting with Cousins

Frank X Loos and Elizabeth Strauss and Family.
Frank X Loos, Elizabeth Strauss, and their children. Wisconsin around 1930.

In A Valuable Letter, I mentioned that my family has a strong presence in Wisconsin. Publishing that post on my personal Facebook page resulted in a great discussion among family members. Some of those that chimed in were cousins that I have never communicated with.  Once I realized the common ancestors that we descended from (Frank X Loos and Elizabeth Strauss), I posted the above picture that got even a greater response.  Together, we were able to identify everyone in this photo. The back row from left to right is Mary, Frieda, Lorena, Frank Henry, Leo, Matthias . The front row (left to right) is Edna, Irene, Anita in Frank Xavier’s lap, Elizabeth, Henry, and Evan. Continue reading Connecting with Cousins

Pieces of History




My paternal grandmother, Barb, has been an integral part of my life. She has been a constant source of love and encouragement for as long as I can remember. She taught me a lot about life. As a cancer survivor, she taught me the power of a positive attitude. She showed me how one person can greatly affect those around her with a “can-do” attitude. I spent a great deal of time with her growing up, and I learned a lot about her life. Continue reading Pieces of History

A Valuable Letter

Long ago I received a letter in the mail from a relative that I had never met, and only knew of as a name in my family tree, Edna Josephine Loos Galuska (1922-2010).  She was the sister of my paternal grandfather, Frank Henry Loos (1910-1970). Most of my father’s family lives in or near Wausau, Wisconsin with my father being one of the first to emigrate outside of Wisconsin.  Aunt Edna shared the same love of genealogy as I do, and when she heard through the family grapevine that there was a young genealogist in the family living outside of the Wisconsin research hub, she sent me a very valuable letter. Continue reading A Valuable Letter

Music of the Heart


I have been in love with Ireland since I was a small child. I spoke of my feeling of connection to Ireland in “Can You Feel Your Roots?” I have since come to realize that my connected feeling wasn’t simply to Ireland, but to all things Celtic. Now, my appreciation also encompasses Scotland and Wales. I have heard of people being “Anglophiles”, and I guess I would classify myself a “Celtophile”. Continue reading Music of the Heart

Surprised By My DNA

Science suggests that we inherit half of our DNA from the mother and half from the father.  I already have the DNA results for both of my parents, and had expected to be a fairly equal blend between the two of them.  Well, this is not what I found in my Ancestry DNA results.  Both of my parents have European descent with my mother calculated as 100% European, and my father 98%.  My DNA revealed that I am also near 100% European, but the percentage break down of the various European ethnicities is what surprised me. Continue reading Surprised By My DNA