Message Boards > Localities > North America > United States > States > Wisconsin > Counties > Marinette


Subject: Re: Marriage, birth, and divorce
Author: pgranzeau1
Date: Tuesday, January 03, 2012
Classification: Query
Surnames: Koller, Roller, Kaller, Granzo, Granzeau

Unfortunately, I am 76, use a wheelchair, and unable to travel from Newport News, VA, to Marinette, WI for the purpose of checking paper records.

My mother had a passport, so she must have had a birth certificate. Unfortunately, she died in 1990. At that time, we went through her papers and discovered her parent's marriage certificate, as well as her birth certificate, but I didn't get her papers, and don't know where they now are (or, indeed, if they still exist). What I really wanted was some information on her father, as apparently he was a drunkard, and my grandmother divorced him sometime after my mother's birth but before the 1910 census, as my mother and grandmother were both living with her parents at that time, in Racine. I know that my grandmother remarried in 1912 in Milwaukee, using her original maiden name.

Koller/Roller I can understand. A handwriten K might be misread as an R. Likewise, a minuscule o might be misread as an a.

These records are difficult to decipher. My grandfather's name is spelled "Koller" in the 1900 Census, "Roller" in the 1905 Wisconsin Census, and "Kaller" for the entry of my grandmother and mother in the 1910 Census. Following my grandmother's remarriage, although she was not formally adopted, my mother was known by her stepfather's surname, and sometime in the 1920s, she decided she didn't like her own given name name, and changed it--so her name on her 1927 marriage certificate, and my own 1935 birth certificate, is not the name on her birth certificate.

My father also decided to change the spelling of his name from Granzo to Granzeau, sometime after the 1930 census but before my birth in 1935.

Stuff like this makes it nearly impossible to research records on line, regardless what the advertisements for say on TV.