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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A Kleager Picture Mystery - Part One

     Brenda Jenkins Kleager lives in Arkansas and is married to the grandson of my great uncle George Kleager.  She does family history research, and we have recently re-connected on the web.  She scanned the following picture, front and back, and sent it to me.  She found this picture a couple of years ago by googling the name Joe Kleager, and found this from a woman who buys pictures from antique and thrift stores that have names on them, then sells them online for $15.

Front with the matting involved.  In the lower right hand corner it says: "Heller" (or "Keller"), 1010 Olive Street, St. Louis, MO.

The back.  She had to use a contrast feature plus add light to see the writing: "dad Joe Kleager".

So, the mystery.  

What year, or even what decade was this picture taken?  

I think that is crucial to figure out which "Joe Kleager" it is.

This fellow looks fairly young to me, say maybe late teens to mid 20's?  I would welcome any other opinions.  There are skilled people out there who could date the picture by the type of matting, and/or by the hair style, collar, bow tie or suit.  But I am not one of those.  Are any of you??

Living out side of St. Louis would not have been a reason to eliminate one of these because there was rail road access to St. Louis that was very accessible from Franklin County and I have read that many of the Kleagers went to St. Louis for various reasons.

Here's the "Joe's" I know, and a few of the facts about them:

1. Joseph M. Klager:
    -my great great grandfather
    -born about 1816 in Switzerland 
    -arrived in New Orleans about 1846 
    -enrolled in St. Louis in  the U.S. Army in 1847 for the War with Mexico, 
    -married 1848 in Franklin County, Missouri to Elizabeth Jenny
    -1850 has a son Joseph, in 1858 a son August
    - can't read or write

2. Joseph Klaeger 
    - my great grandfather
    - the son above, born 1850 in Franklin County, Missouri 
    - worked as a teamster driving a wagon before marriage, including some time in St. Louis 
    - married in 1875 to Lesetta Mincemeyer
    - in 1878 has a son, Joseph William

3. Joseph Kleager
     - the son of August, son of #1
     - first cousin of #2
     - born 1881 in Bourbon, Missouri
     - married about 1906
     - lived and worked in St. Louis as an adult

4. Joseph William Kleager
    - son of #2
    - born in 1878 in Franklin County, Mo
    - married 1906 to Halle Ellen Renick
    - moved to Nebraska in about 1920

5.  The "Other" Joseph Kleager
    - the guy who confused me for years and years
    - roughly same era/age as #1, slightly younger
    - probably some sort of cousin of #1, but I have not established that
    - sometimes listed as Joseph J. Klaeger
    - married to Barbara Nier in 1864
    - sold land to Joseph M. Kleager #1 - in 1865 which is when I knew there were TWO Joseph's
    - moved from Franklin County to Arkansas sometime around 1869

6.  Joseph Klager
    - lived from 1796-1856
    - married to Catharina Barbara Glauss
    - death record in St. Francis Borgia Catholic Church of Washington, Missouri  
    - same parish records as Joseph Kleager #5 and Joseph Kleager #1  
    - not sure how he is related, but assume he has to be
    - could be the father of either #1 OR #5, unless 1 and 5 are brothers with the same name!!!

Which one is he??????

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