Monday, December 3, 2012

Dorks Across The Pond

I am pretty lucky to have an ancestral name like Dork.

Recently, I wrote several posts about my success trying to locate and piece together the various siblings of my great-great-grandfather, Otto Carl Dork in Lansing, Michigan. [Old posts here]

Otto's marriage record stated his parent's name were Carl Doerk and Carrie A. Popka. Otto was the last of his siblings to marry, and as luck would have it, older records didn't ask for parents names. But this record is a great start:

My next step was to search for immigration records. It took some creative searching due to name variations. I found the following family members on the ship Braunschweig that landed in New York on 22 April 1882.

page 16
Caroline Dork, 42, Prussia
Johanne Dork, 16, Prussia

page 21
Wilhelmine Derk, 19, Prussia
Maria Derk, 11, Prussia
Otto Derk, 8, Prussia
Rudolf Derk, 4, Prussia
Otto Derk, 5 months, Prussia
Auguste Papke, 64, Prussia

Ooh! These are clearly the right children. And their assumed mother, Caroline Dork, is the adult/parent of the group. Notably, there is no male parent and no older son Herman. Did one or both come ahead of the rest of the family? I have no idea who the baby Otto is. And who is Auguste Papke? Papke sure seems similar to Popka. A grandmother, perhaps? There are answers from the passenger lists, and now I have even more questions.  

To be continued...

© 2012 Sally Knudsen