25 April 2015

The Preacher's Confused, She's Foresaken, and Church Records Are Not Gospel

Sometimes ministers have a way of laying things on the line and sometimes they are just a little too blunt.

This 1914 entry from the funeral portion of the church register of St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Coatsburg mentions my aunt and includes a little commentary from the minister as well. In addition to listing her date of birth and death, he indicated that she "died childless and foresaken by husband..."

The minister was apparently so concerned about Sophia being childless and "foresaken" that he got her names mixed up. She was Mrs. Sophia Driesback nee Dirks, not Sophia Dirks nee Driesback. Church records can be just as incorrect as any other record.

This image came from Ancestry.com's "Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, Records, 1875-1940"