When I got home from Christmas yesterday, a package from the Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society was waiting for me! Earlier this month, I posted about finding my Michael Kline family on an Ancestry.com database called "Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Mennonite Vital Records, 1750-2014." Surprised to learn that I had Mennonite ancestors, I sent the society $70 for two hours of research.
After opening the large envelope, I eagerly read the cover letter to see what records they found. The end of the letter, however, surprised me. It said: "We have many genealogical cards of persons who were not Mennonite. The book by Ruth Kline Lee would indicate that Michael Kline was Lutheran since their children were baptized by Lutheran pastors."
My Kline family were NOT Mennonite after all!
But, the historical society's letterhead includes the following at the bottom of the page: "Preserving and popularizing Mennonite and Pennsylvania German heritage, history and faith for 50 years." Thankfully, the society has records about families with German ancestors, too. And, that is why they had quite a few documents about my Kline family.
Although I still have a lot to read, I was thrilled to see several documents that list Michael Kline's fourteen children: six sons and eight daughters. A 1781 indenture is found in the Lancaster County Deed Book X on pages 413 through 47. The first two paragraphs read:
This indenture made the sixteenth day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred & eighty one. Between Dorothea Kline the widow relict & administratrix of all & singular the estate of Michael Kline late of Warwick township in the country of Lancaster & State of Pennsylvania deceased George Kline one of the sons of the said Michael Kline deceased & Christiana his wife) Leonard Kline another of the sons of the said Michael Kline deceased & Barbara his wife, Michael Quiggell & Frenia his wife (Late Frenia Kline of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) George Wilt and Catharina his wife (Late Catharina Kline, another of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) Adam Reist & Magdalena his wife (Late Magdalena Kline, another of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) George Bowman & Margaret his wife (late Margaret Kline, another of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) John Bowman & Dorothea his wife (late Dorothea Kline, another of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) George Giger & Barbara his wife (Late Barbara Kline, another of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) John Brown & Susana his wife (late Susanna Kline, another of the daughters of the said Michael Kline deceased) of the one part, and Nicholas Kline (one of the sons of the said Michael Kline deceased) of the other part.
Whereas the said Michael Kline in his life-time & at the time of his death was seized of and in, inter alia [Latin for "among other things], several tracts of land situate in Warwick township county & State aforesaid and ordered his last will & testament to be wrote before he executed died intestate, leaving issues six sons and eight daughters including the parties, above mentioned, and Daniel Kline, Michael Kline & Jacob Kline sons & Gertraut [sic, but seen as Gertrude on other documents] another of the daughters of minor children of the deceased.
While I'd seen these 14 children listed before, it is wonderful to have actual evidence stating these are his children! As an added bonus, the spouses of all but one of the daughters are given, too!
Are you related to the Kline family? I'd love to talk! Please leave me a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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