This branch of the Austrian Hesch family is descended from Johann Hesch and his wife Marya (Schlinz) Hesch, who came to America from Oberschlagles, Bohemia with three sons: Paul, Mathias, and Anton. +++Johann & Marya settled in Buffalo County, Wisconsin but moved to Pierz, Mn in about 1885. .+++Mathias settled in Waumandee, Wisconsin and moved to Pierz in 1911. +++Anton never married but farmed with his dad in Agram Township, where he died in 1911.+++And Paul, my great grandfather, settled five miles away, in Buckman, Minnesota. He died there in 1900.

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Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Trachowfsky Mystery

When you're working on your family history online, one thing that's maybe not top-of-mind is to re-check sources you've checked before...UNLESS you're Larry.  He periodically stuns me with additional info, like yesterday ☺:
(Backstory: Our great grandpa Paul had a brother named Mathias.  Mathias Hesch married Agnes Trachofsky in Waumandee, Wisconsin in August 1879 and they eventually moved to Pierz, Minnesota about 1910.  They're buried in Pierz).

Larry found a small article in the San Francisco Morning Call from the 12th of March, 1892 with two very familiar names mentioned--

Mrs Trachowfsky's Will
Elizabeth Trachowfsky died on the 2d inst., leaving an estate of $1683.33 in cash.  By a will of the 25th ult., she left everything to the executrix, Mrs Annie E Bullis, in trust to bury her, to expend $50 for masses for the repose of her soul, to pay all debts, to retain $50 as a mark of esteem and as a small recompense for her kindness and attendance, and deliver all the rest to the testatrix's sister, Mrs. Agnes Hesch of Waumandee, Wis.

Wow!  Agnes had a sister in San Francisco.  In 1892, Agnes was 39...and Elizabeth was 41.  Evidently, too, she was in California by herself (no relatives):

TRACHOWFSKY--In this city, March 2, 1892, Elizabeth Trachowfsky, a native of Bohemia, Germany, aged 41 years.
Friends and acquaintances are respectfully invited to attend the funeral THIS DAY (Friday) at 8:30 o'clock A.M. from the parlors of the United Undertakers 27 and 29 Fifth Street; thence to St Boniface Church, 123 Golden Gate Avenue, where a requiem high mass will be celebrated for the repose of her soul commencing at 9 o'clock A.M. Interment Holy Cross Cemetery.
Thinking about how a single female immigrant might have found her way across the ocean and the country, it's likely she worked for another family and traveled with them to wherever they were going.  Sadly, since she had no offspring, her story ended in 1892 (until now).
We couldn't find Trachowfsky or variations of it in the censuses, so we tracked the other person mentioned to see if anything seemed pertinent...and also, cuz we COULD, ya know? ☺
According to the 1900 census, Annie E Bullis was 4 years older than Elizabeth, and was the wife of Edward A Bullis.  They had 4 living children, two of whom were still at home.  Ed was retired from a career that had to do with the interment of deceased Ex-Union soldiers /maybe just part of his duties.  We found his name and comments in a book called "San Francisco municipal reports Fiscal year 1898-99, ending June 30, 1899" where Ed was identified as "Superintendant".   
New info, same afternoon:
COOL! Larry found Elizabeth listed in the San Francisco city directory in 1880, working as a domestic at 1104 Post.  Of course he looked-up that address: it was the home of George O and Margaret McMullin, grocers.  He found them in The Elite Directory for San Francisco and Oakland from 1879.  So, we know more about Elizabeth, but
As usual, new info brings more questions.  Now, when we go back to the church books in Bohemia from those years, maybe we'll find more than Thomas Trachofsky as Elizabeth's parents (Agnes's mom wasn't named in her birth account).  Also, since a brother named Alfred wasn't mentioned in the obit, was the man by that name in Pierz related...or was it just that her sister was closer to her?  
I'm hoping someone will google Trachowfsky/Trachowsky/Trachofsky and arrive here...and let us know.

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