Did I find him?

Today is a glorious day. We’re having a girls day. In our pajamas, watching movies (Avatar right now), and I’m doing genealogy on my laptop. I couldn’t ask for a better day. Except of course if I might have finally found George Thorward in 1870.

George is the first known Thorward I have in America. He lived in Caldwell, New Jersey until he died in 1940. I have him in censuses from 1880 through 1930. One bone of contention I’ve always had is that I can’t find him in 1870, even though in all the censuses he puts his arrival sometime in the 1860s. In his obituary it states that he was born in Obberstetten, Germany. Unfortunately, that is my only hint for where George comes from. Even worse is that there is more than one Oberstetten in Germany. So I’m going to need a better clue.

His obituary is actually a really good source. It gives his age, when he celebrated his wedding anniversary, the church he was a member of, and about when he entered the country. It also verifies the census information of him being a cigar maker/manufacturer his whole career. All good hints.

I always thought I was stalled with George. I didn’t hold out much hope on getting much further until I learned more about the great divide of researching in other countries. That is until I was re-entering his wife’s 1870 census information. She was only 15 but she was living in the household of Samuel Bond as a domestic servant. It makes sense for me, since her father died in 1862 (Civil War maybe?). Today I noticed something on the census page I’d never noticed before.

As you can see, Josephine is there on line 18. What I noticed is actually on line 9. George John/Yohn. He is age 18 (it fits perfectly with my George Thorward). His occupation is listed as a cigar maker’s apprentice. The family George is living with is another Bond family. What really caught my eye is the birth place of Wurtemburg.  I can’t find much, but I do know there is an Oberstetten in Wurtemburg, Germany.

Is this my George?

It can’t be a coincidence that Josephine is living with a cigar manufacturer and George would later become a cigar maker. All these things just keep adding up, but I still can’t find where George entered the country. I do feel as if I’ve found him in 1870 now though.

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