What Started it All

In May of 2013, I made my first trip to Europe.  I did the Rick Steves 14 Day Best of Europe Tour.  While in Munich, I started thinking about where we might be from.  Munich felt very "home" like.  So once I returned, I found the information Richard … [Read more...]

What About the Wurtz’s? (Grandmother Elizabeth Wurtz Berger Erhardt)

Unfortunately, I do not have a great “story” to tell about the Wurtz family.  From my research, I can tell they probably have a similar story to the Berger’s as I found that they were from an area just northwest of where the Berger’s are from.  They … [Read more...]

Setting the Record Straight on the Berger-Wurtz-Erhardt Connection

My research was not concerned with the Erhardt’s.  I was most interested in my lineage which would be that of Grandfather John Berger and Grandmother Elizabeth Wurtz Berger Erhardt. The story I always knew was that Grandfather John died when dad … [Read more...]

The Drive From Frankfurt to Wissembourg

The journey starts in Frankfurt after having spent some time in Amsterdam and Frankfurt.  I flew into Amsterdam and stayed 3 nights.  After that, I took the train to Frankfurt to visit for 2 days.  I picked up a rental car in Frankfurt and drove to … [Read more...]

From Where Does Everyone Come?

We have always said we are German.  Well, not so fast.  Based on the research by Cousin Brian over in London and taking off on that in Ancestry, you could say we are more Alsatian than strictly German.  Our relatives straddled the border of what is … [Read more...]


The prelude to our story starts in Wissembourg, France.  It is here where Cousin Brian finds evidence of our 6th Great Grandparents, Peter and Magdalena Berger, and their son, our 5th Great Grandfather, Jacob.  In his book, They Dared to Dream, Brian … [Read more...]


Just a few minutes northwest of Wissembourg is a little village called Bobenthal which is on the German side of the border.  It is thought that Jacob could have been born here, lived here, and/or worked here prior to claiming his inheritance and … [Read more...]

Goersdorf – The Story Starts Here

Goersdorf is where we first officially find Jacob.  He leaves Wissembourg and heads south to Goersdorf.  Here is a video from the drive to Goersdorf.  I could not figure out how people got from where they were to eastern Russia to head back to … [Read more...]

Goersdorf – Church

After driving around a bit, I found the Catholic church and went in.  This is the church where Jacob and his first wife, Maria Magdalena Biesser, were married.  Maria's parents were wealthy Swiss land owners in the region and owned vineyards in … [Read more...]


After Maria Magdalena dies in 1754, Jacob marries Anna Maria Hutler a few months later.  This marriage takes place in the church in Preuschdorf, which is right down the road from Goersdorf.  Unfortunately, I was not able to get into the church.  Born … [Read more...]