Barry's Relatively Speaking: Leave No Door Untried

Posted on Oct 07, 2012

Barry's Relatively Speaking shares the personal experiences and stories of genealogists found in the Everton Genealogical Helper Magazine collection on MyGenShare.com. Juan shares the following experience.

When working on a family genealogy, I believe the motto should be leave no door untried.

I knew my grandfather's parents, William Bavernitz and Reka Ruback had come to the U.S. from Germany on their honeymoon. I had interviewed everybody and had found that a sister and a brother of Reka's also came about the same time, and William had a brother in Pennsylvania (but where?). The Ruback descendents knew less than I did.

One day I found an old stamp collection of my grandfather's in the attic. He had preferred to keep the whole envelope instead of ripping the stamp off. One had been written to his sister from a Willi Rubach in Berlin, Germany in 1951. Would he still be alive and at the same address after almost 30 years? No, I decided and forgot about the envelope for two very frustrating years until I looked at the album again. It would only cost 31 cents, why not give it a try?

Two weeks later, I got an answer. Willi Rubach was indeed alive and at the same address. He is 80 years old. His father and my great grandmother Reka were brother and sis-ter.He speaks English and knows many of the things for which I have been searching.

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