Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Wandling Connections

As often seems to happen in these times of internet genealogy, stories sometimes cross where details can easily get wrongly attributed to the wrong people/places. I believe a case in point is the Wandling family of early Sussex County, New Jersey. I am going to here add an overview of my research showing connections I believe to have existed between the Wandling and Menge/Mann families.

1. Most crowd-sourced trees seem to agree that the original immigrant to America was Jacobus Wandling born before 1740, and died in 1816 in Columbia County, PA, married to Anna Maria. But right away, there is disagreement about where Jacobus came from in Europe. Some say he was Dutch (original name spelled Van Der Lin), others say he came from the upper Rhine Vally in Germany. As far as I know, we don't have documentation that supports either case.

2. Combined crowd-sourced trees say that the children of Jacobus and Anna Maria were: Elizabeth, Henry, Adam, John, Mary Catherine, and Jacob. Of the sons, Adam stayed on the family homestead in New Jersey while Henry, John, and Jacob migrated to Pennsylvania.

3. The oldest son, Henry, is of particular interest to me. The records of St. James Lutheran Church in Greenwich, NJ show a marriage between Henrich Wendling and Catarina Mange in 1788. But who was Catharina Mange, and who were their children? According to my research, Catharina Menge was born 12 Jan 1766 in Philadelphia to Ernst Mangen (original German spelling was something like Menge, and later in America MANN) and his first wife, Catharina Klockner, who subsequently died only weeks after her daughter was born. Ernst Menge quickly remarried to my 5th g-grandmother, Maria Magdalena Sommer, later in 1766. The Mann family moved from Philadelphia to Sussex County, New Jersey around 1780. There Ernst's oldest child, Catharina, married Henry Wandling in 1788.

4. Ernst Menge wrote his will in 1804 where he bequeathed one-eighth of his estate to Jacob and Mary Vandolin. This bequest was confusing for the longest time because Ernst's daughter Mary was already named in the will as the wife of Andrew Banghart. But then I found New Jersey deeds and orphan's court records that were filed after Ernest Mann died in 1816. Those records refer to Jacob and Mary Vandolin as heirs-at-law, children of Ernest's deceased daughter Catharine. At this point, I realized that Jacob and Mary Vandolin were not a married couple, nor were they children of Ernst Mann, but rather they were his grandchildren by way of his daughter, Catherine, who was born of Ernst's first marriage and who later married Henry Wandling. Because Ernst's will was written in 1804, we must assume that his daughter, Catherine Menge Wandling, died some time before that date.

5. There is some evidence that Henry Wandling/Vandling, who had likely moved to Northumberland County in PA, might have married again around 1810 to Elizabeth or Sarah Follmer, who also must have died prematurely. Orphan's Court records there in 1826 indicate that somebody named Henry Vandling requested that the court appoint a guardian for his children Abraham and Henry Vandling, who were also legatees in the will of George Follmer. It seems likely that Elizabeth Follmer, named as daughter of George Follmer, died before 1820 and her only children were Abraham and Henry Vandling. I have yet to see any conclusive documentation that tells us whatever became of Henry Wandling.

6. Let us now return to the children of Henry Wandling and Catharina Menge, namely Jacob, born 1790 and Mary, born 1791. It was this Jacob Wandling who married Keziah Meyers and died in Morgan County, Ohio in 1847. Mary Wandling married Andrew Seydel and died in Crawford County, Ohio in 1848. All the descendants of these two Wandling families also have roots in the Menge/Mann family of Södel, Germany!

7. The only point that still has me somewhat puzzled is that some family trees state that the brother of Henry Wandling, namely Jacob Wandling, born about 1766 and died 1847 in Chillisquaque, Lycoming, PA, married somebody named Mary Mann. Additionally, in the New Jersey deed records transferring shares of the estate of Ernst Menge in 1819 to Benjamin Hunt, TWO Wandling couples transferred their shares: Jacob Wandling and wife Keziah (son of Henry Wandling and Catharina Menge) and Jacob Wandling and wife Mary. Who is this latter couple? I have not seen this deed myself, but it could be that the transcriber made the same mistake I did when looking at Ernest Mann's will, assuming that Jacob and Mary Vandolin were a married couple. So if the wording does not actually say "Jacob and wife Mary" but rather "Jacob and Mary", then we are still talking about two siblings who were grandchildren of Ernest Mann. I will look this up next time in SLC, so stay tuned.

8. As a final note and aside, a different branch in my family tree includes other names from Sussex County, New Jersey, including the name TAYLOR. In 1791, Jeronemus Taylor wrote his will in Sussex County and named his friend, Jacob Wandling, as one of the executors! Curious, right?

As usual, I hope this information is helpful to other researchers and I welcome any comments.

(Note: in order to help search matching, I include the following spellings in this article: Wendling, Vandling, Vandlin Vandolin, Van Der Lin)

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