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The Nafzger Heritage News

The Nafzger Heritage News

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MiIt storw.a Ubtar 
4nen ctg - Gosh. ia 
91 tOM 
be iaf1Iger LerItage ieki 
VOL. XIII, NO, LI FALL ISSUE 
•THE BERWARTSTEIN CASTLE• 
Ray Noftsger is back in the United States0 We are going to miss his fine research effort in Europe0 However, we are happy that he has returned to his home country and we believe his research activities will continue in the U0S0 We have had several pleasant te’ephone conversations with Ray and already, he has begun. to explore .new research in the U0S0 on our heritage0 If you should want to write to him,. he is located at 950 Walnut Street, Apt0 309, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 191870 
The picture on the left is taken from the April 1984. cover of “Mennonite Family History” P000 Box 171, Elverson, Pennsylvania, l9529 The picture is of the Berwartstein Castle,a landmark in the Wasgau, Germany0 In 1715, the Nafziger, Ehresmann, Holli, Roggy and Schwar— entruber families lived, at the foot of this Castle. 
The picture is important to us. because of the many times that the families who lived at the footof the castle cross through. marriage with other Nafzigerfamilies0From the reoords we have (sent: to us by Ray Noftsger) we can identify several Nafziger families who appear to have been: living at Berwartstein Castle 
near the time of 1715 or many years later0 Some of the data we have would indicate that Nafziger families may have been living there for several generations0 
For several reasons, we suspect that this castle may have a’ connection with perhaps the ‘most famous Nafziger of the 1700°s0That would be Bishop Johannes.Na.fziger’ who was ordained a preacher in 1731, and. became a leader of the. group which met for worship atEssingen. He was 75 years of age when the Pal itinate government brought him to trial for “ailedged rebaptism” of two. young girls whose parents had .been Mennonites,but whose father had been expelled from the congregation for leading a disorderly life,after which he put ‘his children in a convent which claimed their for the Catholic Church0 
Despite the fact that these two youp girls had: repeatedly, requested that they be’ admitted to the Mennonite congregation and despite all efforts exerted in his behalf, Bishop Nafzi— ger.was. fined five hundred gulden, probably his entire fortune and he was exiled from the province0 
The personality ofJ.ohannes Nafziger is a strong one . and is reflected in his writings which have been preserved0 Johannes was born in Switzerland in 1706 but emigrated to the 
Continued on Page Three 
THE NAFZGER HERITAGE NEWS 
120 Edgewood Drive 
Grafton, Ohio 44044 
EDT1)f?S AND PUBLISHERS 
In Grafuon, the Naftzger family was honored to have 
CLAIR NAFTZGER visited with Tom and Norma.,Finneran and three of their 
KATHLEEN NAFTZGER four children from Trumbull, Connecticut0 Norma is a 
BETTY NAFTZGER sixth generation descendant of Peter of Uberau0 We 
spent several pleasant hours filling in some •of the de— 
SUBSCRIPTION FEE tails and updating this family line for our files0 We 
TEN DOLLARS — YEARLY appreciate the information that Norma was able to provide for our files0 
PUBLISHED QUARTERLY Both Norma and Tom are attorneys0 Because Tom is __________________ a computer consultant,the visit became very educational 
as we discussed the possibility of Computerizing the 
PL45Z.LkP_d €V1Lq information on the Nafzger families that we have on 
Sp’dng — — Foil - Suniine’L file0 The placing of this information on the computer 
will resolve many of the problems that we have in try in to keep track of some 40,000 names and which de scendant fit into which line. It would appear that we 
will be able to quickly associate a letter. writer to a particular Nafzger line and thus, provide a better and more complete answer to them0 As a result of this interesting discussion and advice, we are seeking more information on the type of computer, costs of such a venture, and assessing the advantages and disadvantages more fully0 Our first donation for such a project came from the Fin— nerans0 We appreciate their help0 Because the cost of such an undertaking appears to be more than we can afford at this time with the other projects we have underway, we will be seeking advice, help and donations from any source0 At this time, we are not quite sure that we can carry through with the project and the project is not worth much unless it is completely converted to a new and different system0 Any of our readers who have a strong feeling about themeritsof such a project should write to us0 
The Finnerans while visiting, supplied us. with soie interesting historical pictures 0 One is of Christian Naffziger, son of Peter N0 of Uberau and his wife, Phoebe Fisher0 Christian emigrated to the U0S,. in i853 He died in 1893 at the age of 90 years0 Christian married Barbara Staley. Norma also provided with •an 8 x 10 print of Barbara0 The third print i.s of Jacob Imhof and. Magdaiena Maurer. That would be the parents of Marie Imhoff who married John Naffzlger and John is the son of Christian0 
We have the suggestion from a letter writer that we discontinue the reprinting the announcements of weddings, obits., etc0 We.began the practice when readers started to send us such. announcements from all over lhe U.S. Some readers wrote to tell us that they liked to read of Nafzgers who 1ved in other’ parts Of the U0S. and to know more about them even though they did not k.now them personally0 Also, we have several readers who very faithfully cut such clips from newspapers in different parts of the U.S. and forward them to us0 If you should. have any strong feelings about the matter, please write and we will abide by what we hope will be the opinion of most of us0 
The Carroll Nafziger’s publication of the Hopedale Nafziger clan is moving along orderly with a great deal of care but rather slowly. LaVeta Nafziger, wife of the late Carroll Nafziger has finished updating and proof reading the Copy. Getting bids on the typesetting isour next step. 
Page Two 
BERWMTSTEIN CASTLE - CQntjniied from Page One 
Palitinate with his parents in about 1711. Johannes N0 married Barbara Holli, February 2, 1729 at Barbelstein,Hof. Thus, we know that his wife, Barbara was probably a part of the Holli families that lived at the foot of Berwartsein Castle 0 
There is reason to believe that Johañnes was part of the Nafziger family who also lived there. He was ordained a preacher two years after his marriage. In 1738, we have records to indicate that he was a tenant on the estate of Baron von Dalberg, Essingen. In 1759 and 1779, he is recorded as opening meetings for the Mennonite movement of the 1700s. In 1765, he is found active in the Netherlands0 And finally, at the age .of 75 years, he is brought to trial. Ray Noftsger believes he has the records to identify three of his children; Magdalena who married Johannes Albrecht, katharina who married Jakob Dester (Vester) and another daughter who married Christ— lam Burkie. 
Unfortunately we do not have the records to connect any of the U.S. or Essingen Nafziger living in the U.S. to this very important one in our heritage. The reason is because we can only identify three of his daughters, only the Albrechts, Dester or Vesters or Burkeys can have a chance of establishing a direct relationship to this very important one. There may have been other children but we have been unable to identify them. 
But all is not lost for the many U.S. Nafziger families who know,that they connect to the Essingen line in Europe. With the help of Ray Noftsger, we can establish that still another Nafziger family came from Berwarstein castle. He is Ulrich Nafziger. It is to this Ulrich Nafziger that most of our U.S. lines connect. We are uncertain if Ulrich was the .father of our more famous Johannes N. or his brother. However, the dates we have on file may suggest that they were brothers so it is quite probable that they were both children of a Nafziger family that we have been unable to identify. 
Let us look at the Ulrich N. story. Ulrich married Maria •Magdalena (last name is not known.) She was born in 1694 and died in 1759 at the age of 65 years. If we can assume that Magdalena and Ulrich, man and wife, were about the same age and Johannes Nafziger was born in 1705, then the likelihood of his being of a different generation is remote. Ulrich came from the Castle Berwartsein. In 1715, both Jakob Erismann and Ulrich N. are identified as Anabaptists. They took a lease at Rodenbach and remained there until 1728. In 1728, they took a farm at Essingen near Landau in the Pfalz. Maria died at this farm. It is possible that Ulrich married again. Four of his child- rem are known. They are (1) Barbara, who married Jakob Schenk; (2) Anna, who married Veltin Gungrich; (3) Peter of Rheinfelder who married Maria Schenk, 2nd, marriage to Elizabeth Ehresmann and third marriage to Barbara Ehresmann; and finally (4) Jobannes Nafziger. Of the above mentioned children, we want to follow just one line that beingthe line of Peter of Rheinfelder. 
Peter of Rheinfelder married three times — to Schenk, Ehresniann and Ehresmann. He had seven children: Katharina (daughter of the Schenk marriage) who married a Christian Naffziger. The second child: was named Johannes and is the son of Peter to E1!izabeth Ehresmann marriage. This Johannes married Kathrina Spring and is a part of the lilbach line. The third son of Peter of Rheinfelder is Peter N0 of Ilibach who married Anna Elisabeth Danner. It was the son of Peter N,/Danner who erngrated to the U.S. in 1827. He married Jakobina Schwartzentruber and is the one who died at sea on their voyage to America. The fourth son of Peter of Rheinfelder was Valentjn II of Gauerheim/Hockhejm. It was this Nafziger and his four marriages - to Fischer, widow Nafziger, Beck and to another widow Nafziger, account for the heritage of many U.S. Nafziger lines. 
Continued on Page Five 
Fage Three 
• Beverly Schiatter Dickinson of Lansing, Michigan writes for information on her Nafzger family line. Excerpts from her letter are as follows: 
“My grandmother was Eliza Nofziger (also spelled Nafziger) Schlatter of Fulton County, Ohio. She was the daughter of Peter and Mary Sauder Nofziger, and was born inFulton County near Archbold Ohio0 Eliza lived all of her life in Fulton County and is buried in Archbold Cemetery0 I believe she was a descendant from. Valentine N. who emigrated to the U.S.A. in 1831 according to the March, 1974 issue of the News. She had seven children, Floyd M0 Schlatter (my father who died in 1981 at the age of 86), Ormond Schlatter, Olen Schiatter, Florence Schiatter Rupp, Ada Schlatter Liechty, Nola Schiatter Cady, and Miles Schiatter. Theonly currently surviving children are Ada and Nola0 It it possible for you to give me aflame and address of a Nofziger or Nafziger who ha researched the Valentine line or may have more information about Peter Nofziger who lived in Fulton County. Iwould be pleased to share any information I have in regard to the children, grandchildren etc. of Eliza Nofziger Schlatter.” 
Editor’s Note - Dale Nofzinger, 2362 Gady Road, Adrian, Michigan 49221 is an expert on the Valentine Nafziger line and we suggest that you contact him. Eleanor Kottke, Washington. State University library adminstrator died at her home from jultiple myeloma. Mrs. Kottke, over the years, simple known as Eleanor to many hudnred of library employees and WSU facUlty was born Oct. 9, 191.7 in Lincoln, Nebraska. In 1952, she married Loy Naffziger, a mechanical engineer and native Of the Palouse. He died in 1958 and later married Frank Kottke. Sheis survived by herhusband, daughter, Polly Rago of Spokane and Julie Lynch, also of Spokane. 
Our thanks to Nancy Lonsinger for her nice letter: She sends us the names and addresses of some Nafzger descendants who may be interest receiving the News. 
George F. afziger of West Chester, Ohio is a long time subscriber and researcher for the Nafzger name and the News was married March 10, 1984. He was married to a native Cincinnatian, Janice Lynn Hagen. George is employed as a contract administrator at Monsanto Research Corporation of Miamisburg, Ohio and Janice is a physical therapist at Children’s Hospital in; Cincinnati. 
George writes to ask us about the “Novinger” name that he encountered t his place of work. He wonders if it represents another variation of our name. We doubt if there is a connection. We have encountered the “Novinger” name in a number of early Pennsylvannia Census Records. As yet, we cannot find any connection.The. “Novinger” name is found early in Pennylvannia records and the spelling has remain the same down through the years. 
The Lancaster County Historical Society of Lancaster, Pennsylvania writes to express their appreciation for the complimentary subscription to our Newsletter that we are providing for the Society0 Salina M0 Matt is the Librarain if any of our readers should want to contact the Society0 
We are in receipt of a nice letter from Nancy Gilmore of Northport, Alabama.. We are attempting to identify the heritage line of Elizabeth Naftzinger, daughter of Johannes, born in 1769. The spelling of the name would indicate to us that there is a connection to the Mathias Naftzinger line (emigrated to America in 1749) but we cannot find the relationship to this line. We are quite certain that it will trace to one of the early Nafzger lines in the U.S. (prior to 1800) because the early dates that this Elizabeth Naftzinger shows up in the Records. Also, we think Ray Noftsger may have an idea about the heritage of this. Elizabeth N0 As I recall, she turns up in an Ohio County(I believe Holmes County, Ohio) an.d her marriage records would indicate that she came from Virginia which would appear to give her some connection to the Peter N0 line (emigrated in 1949), Any help that our readers can provide to Mrs0 Gilmore will be greatly appreciated. 
Page Four 
BERWARTSTEIN CASTLE—Continued from rage Three 
It is apparent that brancnes of the Ehresmann, Holly, Roggy and Schwarentruber 
families all came to theU0S0 at some period.of time in our history because we members of the Nafziger family marrying members of the four families a number of times in later generations0 For example, Jacob Nafziger who emigrated to America in 1847 and settled in McLean County, Illinois0 He was married to Veronica Rockey0 After the death of Veronica, he was married to Elizabeth Rockey who was a sister to Veronica0 There are hundreds of cases where the Nafziger cross 5the other family lines0 Perhaps, many of these marriages will trace to the five families who lived Berwartstejn Castle in Germany in l7l5 
Our thank to B:etty Schroeder of CoiQrado Springs, colorado for writing0 She writes that she is a descendant of a Matthias Nofziger’s daughter Nancy who married Daniel Goetz(Gates) of Seallsvilie, Ohio0 She writes “I hven°t a clue how he fits: into theNafzger line, except that I have a “gut” fee—ling that he does and that we may have miss:. him i.n our records’ This Matth.ias N0 is a grandson of Rudolph who emigrated to America in l749 We know which line to attach Matthias and we have in our records that Nancy. married Daniel Gates, we do not have much material or data on the Gates. line from that point0 We are hoping she will assist us with an update on the data0 
We have receive several nice letters from Janette J0 Lukenbill of Des Moines, Iowa0 She sends us a wealth of. information on the Noftsgers0 We .are almost certain that her line traces to Jacob who came to.America in l75O This 1750 Jacob had three sons, Joseph, Jacob and Christian0 Two of them remained near the homestead farm near Palmyra, Pennsylvania but one of them, Jacob moved from the area and is found in Brown County, Ohio0 For some time, we were quite confused with this partioular early Noftsger primarily because he kept turning up in the records with a different wife0 Thus, we reasoned .that he must have been married three times0 But it was the children of Jacob that emigrated further westward and was his son also named Jacob that..ended up in Iowa0 Janette sends up copies of obits, weddings, aniversaries, etc0 most of which came from the “Loncimont Times” of Lonqmont, Coloradoe In addition, she has been doi.ng a lot of research by contacting the Comanche County, Kansas, Beaver and Alfalfa Counties, Oklahoma libraries and much more0 Our thanks to her for forwarding this valuable information to us for our records0 
Our thanks to John Noffsker of Inchelium, Washington for his telephone call.0 We always appreciate hearing from a cousin. 
Dorothy J0 DeGruchy of Severna Park, Marylandwrites to us and encloses some nice material Peter Livengood’s Leger0 As many of.our readers knw, many writings have stated that Peter Livengood married Barbara Naftziger, daughter of Jacob who emigrated to America in l75O Because of the bast age difference between the two, we have some doubt if thjs Barbara was the daughter of Jacob who was named Barbara0 The entries in the ledner.would seem to substaniate this thought 0 The entries in Peter’s book identify is brother-in-law as John Nafftsger and our Jacob did not have a son John — at least one known to us0 We suspect that when the truth is found that Barbara will connect to Ulrich who emigrated in l742 Regardless of where the lineage will lead, Dorothy DeGruchy 4th great grandparents are Peter Livengood and Barbara Naftziger0 
We have several nice letter from Shirley Noffsinger of Porter’iille, California. She is a descendant of Peter N0 who emigrated to America in l749 We are forwarding some of the material that was have on him with the hope that it will be of some help to her0 
Page Five 
Our thanks to Betty Jane Goold of Northfield, Minnesota for writing0 Sh is active in the genealogy movement in Minnesota and her letter would indicate that lots of work is being accomplished0 Also, she is researching the “Winegar famly.of which her husband is a member0 
We are in recipt of a card from Ray J0 Dieffenbach of Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania with lot of data on Mathias N0 who emigrated in 1749 
Our thanks to Dietmar Nafzer of Hamburg, West Germany for writing0 
Please note the way Dietmar spells the N0 Name0 It is a form of the name that is not widely used in the U0S0 Dietmar send up a nice genealogical record of his family line dating his line back to l785 The family line is as follows: 
Our friend and relative, Dale Nofzinger of Adrian, Michigan has been busy working on the Valentine N. (emigrated to U.S. in 1831) family line. He has made two trips to Wayne County, Ohio to the area where Valentine lived. He has identified to homestead tract of Valentine and his wife Jacobina Schantz. He is uncertain if the home there is the original home of Valentine and his family. Also, he met his cousin Paul David Zook who presently owns the home of Peter Blough. Some of our readers may recall that one of Valentine’s daughter married Peter Blough. He visited the grave site of Valentin and Jacobina Naftziger. Dale sends us a copy of a picture of the grave site and ask us to note the spelling of the name on the stone. Dale is of the opinion that the adoptive spelling of the name found on the stone came from two other lines (Christian (emigrated in 1847) and Jacob’s descendants (emigrated in 1749). Ray Noftsger will have to provided us with an opinion and the use Of a “t” and “i” in the name as he usually can associate a part of Europe that ancestors may have lived by the spelling. However, I do not believe that the spelling of the name on the stone compare with the spelling used on the will of Valentin. Dale writes that he has identified the person(s) who restored the grave site of Valentin a few years ago. Perhaps, he can fill us in with the details for a future issue of the News. 
we must have at least fifty news clippings of Nafzger happenings around the country sent to us by Schuyler Brossman of Rehrersburg, Pennsylvania and Wilmer Nafziger of Gridley, Illinois0 We will use them in the next issue of the News but we did not have the space to use them in this issue0 Our thanks to you for taking the time to clip them and to forward them to us for our newsletter0 We appreciate the fine effort., 
Johannes Nafzer Webei b. 1787 
Chrishua Nafzer 
b. 1785 
Page Six 
We are in receipt of a letter from Joan Pengra, 25 Edgenton Road, Mankato, Minnesota. She requests that any direct relationship or relatives of her line, John Noffsinger who married Rebecca Noffsinger in 1820, write to her. 
John and Rebecca family is as follows: (1) Eliza, (2) Sarah, (3) Isaac, (4) Amanda, (5) Joseph, (6) Francis, (7) Elijah, (8) Sophia Jane (Joan’s grandmother), and William (9) 
John Noffsinger’s father was also named John,’ born 1752. He married Mary Spangler (1759—1833). They lived in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky. Children of this marriage are: Hannah, Mary, John, Nancy, Elizabeth, Catherine and Frances. As you can see, John was the only son in a family of daughters so he was left to continue the name. Rebecca’s parents were Jacob Noffsinger who married Susan Stoner. Jacob was a brother to John. Both Jacob and John are sons of Peter who emigrated to America in 1749. John and Rebecca moved to Illinois after their marriage. 
If you should connect to this line of Peter Noffsinger who emigrated in1749, write to Joan as she is in the process of updating the line because we have so little information on file on this particular branch. 
We are sorry that we did not receive the letter of Rev. P. Melville Nafziger of Phillipsburg, N.J. In that he was attending the Mennonite World Conference in Strasbourg, France from July 23 to 28th, he asked for Nafziger names and addresses that he could contact while in Europe. Unfortunately, the letter arrived after he had left for France. Rev. Nafziger is a descendant of Samuel N. of Trebo, France who came to Ontario., Canada about 1855. 
Our thanks to Mrs. George Nafzinger of Kansas City, Missouri for writing to us. She sends us the latest information on her family line. 
Rebecca Anne Clarke, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Clarke of Kansas City, Kansas and Donald Dean Nafzinger, Jr., son of Betty Jane and the late Donald D. Nafzinger, of 2413 N.E., 38th Street, Kansas City, Missouri were married July 28th., 1984 at the Wesley United Methodist Church, 3208 Barnnett, Kansas City, Kansas, Donald is an army private stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. 
It was nice to hear from Mrs. Lloyd Clapper of Mansfield, Ohio. She brings us up—to—date with all the latest news. Dale Nofzinger of Mrietta, Georgia writes to tell how nice it is that Dale Nofzinger of Adrian, Michig’an is picking up information and will be continuing work on Valentine Nafziger family line so well done for so many years by the late Frank Nofzinger. Wilmer Nafziger of Gridley, Illinois continues to supply us with the many newspaper clippings from central Illinois about Nafzigers. Our thanks to him for his fine effort. 
We :are in receipt of a card from Rudolph Nafziger of Ludenscheid, West Germany. Rudolph and his family are enjoytriga nice vacation in the Swiss Alps. 
We are forwarding material to R0 T0 Plessinger of West Chester Ohio who is interested 
in finding information on Mary A0(Molly)Sipple who married Aaron Noffsinger in 187O 
Readers who may have information should write to usQ Aaron is a descendant of Rudolph 
N0 who emigrated to America i.n l749 
Page Seven 
Our thanks to Zeola Van Winkle fo sending us a copy of her application of DAR recognition for Matheis Nafzger.’ The DAR lineage is as follows: 
Matheis Nafzger - 
b0 before 1734 
: EiizabelbJ 
Our thanks to Mary Chase of Portland, Indiaiia for voluteering to read the News on, a cassette for Mrs. Riley Brown of Fort Scott, Kansas. I am forwarding the letter rejved from Mrs0 Brown. I know Mary will be touched by th letter and she will feel good for voluteering her services for such a worthy cause. 
We are glad that Eugene E.Kenaga of Essexville, Missouri decdided to write. He is a descendant of Mathias Nafzger who emigrated to America in 1749. We have allsting’for his daughter who married Hans Gnagi but no further information on this particular branch of the family line. We are hopeful that Eugene will be able to help us with the extentionof information for Dorothy Nafzger, daughter of Mathias. 
Our thanks to Chelsea Cooper of Lake Station, Illinois. She is a descendant of Ulrich Nafzger, who emigrated to America in 1742. We haven’t heard from her for quite some’ time and, it was good news to have receive her latest letter. 
THE NAFZGER HERITAGE NEWS 120 Edgewood Drive 
GraFton, Ohio 44044 
Mennonite Historjcai Library 
Goshen College 
Goshen, md. 46526 
‘Jacob’ Naftzinger 
b. 1778 
m. Maria Mayer 
b. 1783 
I ZEOLA VAN WINKLE El Dorado, Kansas 
Beneville Grimes b. 1832 
m. Rebecca Naftzi 
b. 1856 
Daniel Flexer 
b. 1854 
By PAT GEISLER 
When two brothers from Germany landed in New Orleans several generations ago, they walked all the way to Indiana to settle. 
Because they were helped by so many people on their long trip north, they taught their families in later years never to turn a hungry man from the door. 
THE TEACHING still survives in their descendants, who keep the custom, although the reason for it had been long forgotten. 
The story is just one which was rediscovered byClare Naftzger in his search into his family history. 
“I’ve been amazed at the number of myths found in a family that have been passed from generation to generation by word of mouth and never put into writing.” 
UNCOVERING FAMILY history has turned what could 
• have been a simple project into a monumental effort by Naftzger of 120 Edgewood Dr., Graf ton, who is head of the evening college at Lorain County Community College. 
He doesn’t just want to find out who his relatives were, but he wants to trace the entire line of all those who bear his name in the United States. 
“I’m working with eight generations,” Naftzger said. “There might even be a ninth one if one old record in Lancaster County, Penn., is correct.” The record talks of a man who may have been the father of Jacob Naftzinger, from whom Naftzger is descended, who arrived in 1750 in the United States. 
TRACINGTHAT many generations of Americans with his family name is an enormous task, and when Naftzger began 
• the project two years ago, he wrote letters to all those in the United States with names similar to his. 
“There are Nofskers, Naftzgers, Nafzigers, and Naffzigers,” he explained. “In fact, I’m looking up peoplewith seven different spellings. There Were more than 5,000 listed ii the phone books (of the U.S.), and it’s difficult to connect them all. 
“It (the whole family) may be almost too large to join — in another generation it would probably be impossible.” 
V LETTERS TO each person explained his project, and asked for a record of the recipient’s family line. “I was 
(cer) 
amazed at how few knew much more than who their grandparents were.” 
Correspondence comes in every day, and many people have volunteered the family stories which give Naftzger clues to the family line, as well as make his search more interesting. V 
“OLD JOHN Naftzger, 1780-1866, was a pretty colorful character,” Naftzger chuckled. “He owned -grist mills and saw mills in Ohio, and had three wives and 12 children. I found most of his descendants, and had a good time telling them 
about old John.” - 
Peppery wills, which make delightful reading even for those who aren’t named Naftzger, pictures of old homesteads and family tales collected carefully by Naftzger make his 
V genealogical search come alive. 
“MOST PEOPLE just print some sort of booklet of dates and names after they trace a family -line,” he explained. “I want to make it come alive, by telling the human interest stoV ries, and making slides (of interesting places and family hornesites) and a regular package for each family.” 
The correspondence with people he has never met has extended Naftzger’s hobby all over the country, and many other distant relatives have gotten interested in the family search. 
V “I think I could connect all the fairlily lines together if I 
could get to Germany,” Naftzger commented. He has scoured. old cemeteries, records of Immigration from two centuries back, and accumulated a surprising knowledge of history as V he has tracked his forbears back across the early days of this 
country. V 
“IT’S TIlE type of history you can relate to your own life, and it will not soon beforgotten, he said. “I’ve learned more history since I began working on the family name than I got in all my formal history courses.” V V 
Some things have saddened him in his search for his family roots. Old cemeteries destroyed by strip mining, gracious old stone homesteads casualties of superhighways, and historical sites fallen into disrepair. 
“BUT IT puts life into perspective, too,” he said. “In the old cemeteries you can’t tell the rich from the poor, or. the hardworking from the one who never worked a day in his entire life. V 
“This has become a deeply satisfying hobby,” he conclud Chronicl 
-Telegram 
Old ti 
are haunts of area man in family history search 
Chronicle - Telegram 
Old cemeteries, records 
are haunts of area man 
(ove) 
in family history search 
1 
OLD JAKOB NOFTZKER, coded number 613 by one of his descendants, Clare Naftzger, changed the spelling of his name several generations back at the time he bought each of his sons a choice piece of land in Wayne Co. That decision created a lot of headaches for Naftzger, whose hobby is tracing family lines of all those in the U.S. who bear names similar to his. Naftzger points to Noftzker’s position on the one of the many genealogical charts he has compiled. One entire wall of the Naftzger family room at 120 Edgewood Dr., Grafton, has charts with about 4,500 names, and he needs a step ladder at times to write names of new additions to the family trees. (C-T photo by Dave Jones) 


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