Casefile Clues

25 November 2008

Ethnic Newspapers-Moline, Illinois


The image in this post is "copy" and "pasted" from scans I made from microfilm copies of the Gazette van Moline. The filmed copy was not the greatest, but I did the best I could.
Readers of the blog know that I am a big fan of ethnic newspapers. This obituary makes that point really well. The obituary for Louise Mortier that appeared in the local newspapers in Rock Island and Moline, Illinois, did not provide any specifics in terms of where Mrs. Mortier was born. Her death certificate was equally helpful--simply stating that she was born in Belgium.
This obituary was split over two parts of the paper. Unfortunately the "good" part was very difficult to read, but it can be deciphered. Mrs. Mortier was born in Oost Winkel, East Flanders, Belgium, on 20 April 1855. Of course, an obituary can contain an error, but I was glad to obtain this location as no other source in the United States mentioned the village specifically.
A quick google search for "gazette van moline" found several references to the paper, including one showing some libraries that have the newspaper. I wrote wrote about this obituary for Ancestry.com's blog a few years ago.

That article contains more information on ethnic newspapers and how to find them. They are an excellent genealogical source. Hopefully when I'm in Salt Lake City this coming May, I'll have time to research the records in Oost Winkel for Louise. Other records indicated her maiden name was Van Hoorebeke.
My wife is a descendant of Louise Mortier.