Anglo-Saxon Okie

Researching my European ancestors

Family of John Leiser (aka Johannes)[1810-1888] — November 25, 2018

Family of John Leiser (aka Johannes)[1810-1888]

Johannes Leiser, my patrilineal great grandfather, was born 25 September 1810 in Egelsbach, in the Grand Duchy of Hesse. He was baptized 3 days later in the Evangelische parish in Egelsbach. His parents are Johann Phillip Leiser and Anna Maria Finck. A farmer and a member of the parish council, he continued to live in Egelsbach until his emigration to the United States in 1855. He died 12 February 1888 in Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Anna Margareta Hinkel was the first of three wives. They were married 13 January 1839 in Egelsbach. She was born 7 July 1814 and died 11 May 1848 giving birth to their fifth child, an unnamed daughter who also died during childbirth. Other children born to Johannes and Anna Margareta included:

  • Adam Leiser, born 25 December 1839 in Egelsbach, died 14 February 1853 in Egelsbach.
  • Viktoria Leiser, born 1 October 1842 in Egelsbach, died 8 September 1843 in Egelsbach.
  • Heinrich Leiser, born 17 November 1844 in Egelsbach, died 29 November 1939 in Okeene, Blaine, Oklahoma. Heinrich (aka Henry Leisher) is my paternal grandfather.
  • Margaretha Leiser, born 26 August 1846 in Egelsbach, died after 1920.

Johannes married Anna Christina Schroth on 30 July 1848 in Egelsbach. She was born 7 December 1820 and died 3 June 1849 as a result of childbirth. The daughter survived:

  • Anna Katharina Leiser, born 3 June 1849 in Egelsbach, died 26 December 1934 in Missouri.

On 4 April 1850, Johannes married his third wife, Katharina Behrenz, in Egelsbach. Katharina was born 5 October 1827 and died 30 December 1890 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Children of Johannes and Katharina include:

  • Maria Magdalena Helena Leiser, born 8 January 1851 in Egelsbach, died 26 September 1927 in Minnehaha County, South Dakota.
  • Elizabeth Leiser, born 19 February 1852 in Egelsbach, died 20 August 1930 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
  • Peter Ferdinand Leiser, born 4 November 1853 in Egelsbach, died 13 May 1918 in Bond County, Illinois.
  • Michael Leiser, born 3 Jun 1855 in Egelsbach, died before 28 Jun 1855, place of death uncertain.
  • Frederic Leiser, born 21 March 1859 in Cedarburg, Ozaukee, Wisconsin, died 17 January 1917 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • John Leiser, born February 1864 in Wisconsin, died 29 September 1925 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
  • William Leiser, born October 1865 in Cedarburg, Wisconsin, died 26 May 1937 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Johannes Leiser, his wife Katharina and his children, Heinrich, Margaretha, Helene, Elizabeth, and Peter, arrived in the United States on 4 August 1855. They settled in Cedarburg, Ozaukee County, Wisconsin. His other daughter, Anna Katharina, also emigrated to the Unites States with her maternal grandmother.

Paternal ancestry of Henry Leisher in Egelsbach, Hesse, Germany — October 9, 2018

Paternal ancestry of Henry Leisher in Egelsbach, Hesse, Germany

Family book Egelsbach (Copy)

The data in Familienbuch-Egelsbach is based on official documents, and includes records for persons who were born, baptized, married, died or buried in Egelsbach between 1652 and 1875. During this time period, the official register was the Protestant church book. For Egelsbach, this would be the Lutheran parish book.

Research in the two volumes of this family book indicates the following paternal line of ancestry for my paternal grandfather Henry Leisher  (born Heinrich Leiser).

  • Heinrich Leiser, born 16 Nov. 1844, in Egelsbach.
  • Johannes Leiser, born 25 Sep 1810, in Egelsbach, and Anna Margareta Hinkel, born 7 Jul. 1814, in Dreieichenhain.
  • Johann Philipp Leiser, born 20 Jan 1784, in Egelsbach, and Anna Maria Finck, born 17 Dec 1787, in Egelsbach.
  • Johann Philipp Leyser, born 24 Dec 1751, in Egelsbach, and Anna Margaretha Bertz, born6 Mar 1751, in Egelsbach .
  • Johann Henrich Leyser, born 9 Oct. 1723, in Egelsbach, and Anna Barbara Finck, born 17 Nov 1726, in Egelsbach.
  • Johann Leyser, birth not stated, died 29 May 1751, in Egelsbach, and Margaretha Hebell, born 17 Feb 1690, in Egelsbach.

Egelsbach and Dreieichenhain are both in the Offenbach district of Hesse, south of Frankfurt.

Welcome to My Blog — October 5, 2018

Welcome to My Blog

I will be blogging about my ancestors and the migration paths taken by my direct line ancestry to arrive in Oklahoma around 1900. My ancestry appears to be 100 % European.

I welcome your comments on any posts, to question, define and/or extend our shared ancestry or to note consistent or conflicting facts or relationships pertaining to those ancestors.

My objective, that I hope you share, is the development of a family history documenting facts, relationships and stories with a high level of confidence in their accuracy. Only through open and constructive communication among family members will we be able to achieve that objective.

I found the following poem on the first page of an unpublished genealogy compiled by my maternal aunt Reva (Irey) (Atterbery) Abbott. Perhaps the posts and your comments will give immortality to our shared ancestors..

All things to nothingness descend

Grow old and die and meet their end;

Man dies, iron rusts, wood goes decayed,

Towers fall, walls crumble, roses fade —

Nor long shall any name resound

Beyond the grave, unless’t be found

In some clerks book: it is the pen

Gives immortality to men.

Master Wace in the “Rhymed Chronicles of the Norman Dukes”



Frances Miller, paternal grandmother — September 24, 2018

Frances Miller, paternal grandmother

On this date 155 years ago, my paternal grandmother was born in Bond County, Illinois. Census records indicate that both her parents were born in Germany; her father Adolph Miller (or Muller) in Lippe Detmold and her mother Frances (or Francisca) Knopf in Baden. Her family was enumerated in Okaw Township, Bond County, Illinois, in the 1870 census, and in Seminary Township, Fayette County, Illinois, in the federal census of 1880.

At age 18, she married Henry Leisher, a widower with two preteen sons, 27 October 1881, in Greenville, Bond County, Illinois. Ten children, 4 daughters and 6 sons, were born to this union. The family left Illinois for Kansas in the latter part of the 1880 decade, then moved to Oklahoma after Henry claimed a farm east of Okeene, Cimarron Township, Blaine County, Oklahoma, shortly after the opening of the Cheyenne-Arapaho lands for homestead in 1892.

She continued to reside in Cimarron Township until her death 12 April 1938. She is buried in Roselawn Cemetery, Okeene, Blaine County, Oklahoma.

Irey, Joseph, Hiatt, Griffith, Roberts, ???- my matrilineal line — September 17, 2018

Irey, Joseph, Hiatt, Griffith, Roberts, ???- my matrilineal line

matrilineal ancestry (Copy)

My known matrilineal line goes back to Kentucky, where Jane Griffith was born in 1804. Her mother is believed to be Polly Roberts, but confirming evidence has not been found. One reference to the marriage of Polly Roberts and Benjamin Griffith was found in a book of compiled Kentucky marriages. Jane Griffith married John Hiatt, their daughter Nancy Mahala Hiatt was born in 1838. Nancy and John Fear Joseph had a daughter, Cora Emeline Joseph, born in 1874. Cora Joseph and Scott Lee Irey were married in Oklahoma Territory in 1904. Their daughter, Marie, my mother, was born in 1907.

A full sequence mtDNA test was completed 13 October 2014. Fifteen matches have been reported since that date; 9 of the matches show a genetic distance = 0, indicating an exact match at all test locations. Another match shows a difference of 1, another a difference of 2 and 4 test matches show a distance of 3. All 15 report J1b1b1 as their mitochondrial haplogroup, the same as mine. Some identified an earliest ancestor, some associated family trees with their test. None of my matrilineal surnames were found in any identified ancestor or in any family tree of my mtDNA matches. Eleven of the 15 matches had also taken a Family Finder (autosomal) test. None of the eleven are found on my Family Finder match list.

Conclusion: It is unlikely that the common matrilineal ancestor can be identified unless the matrilineal line can be extended several generations beyond current knowledge.


New AncestryDNA Ethnicity Estimates – comparing 3 siblings — September 13, 2018

New AncestryDNA Ethnicity Estimates – comparing 3 siblings

Ancestry DNA recently released new ethnicity estimates based on a more than 5 times increase in reference samples, redefinition of several reference populations and a restructured algorithm for comparing individual samples with reference samples. Below are screenshots of the new estimates for myself (LLL) and my two sisters (MLH and LKA).

A significant change affecting the estimates for these siblings is the division and redefinition of the reference populations in the British Isles and Western Europe. The three reference populations represented in the ethnicity estimates of these 3 siblings include:

  • England, Wales and Northwestern Europe (primarily England, Scotland and Wales)
  • Germanic Europe (primarily Germany)
  • Ireland and Scotland (primarily Ireland, Wales, and Scotland)

Significant in the changes from earlier estimates are the absence of Scandinavia, Southern Europe, East Europe, Iberian Peninsula and Europe Jewish; and the concentration of the estimates in the British Isles and Northwest Europe. The current estimates are much closer to the expected ethnicities of primarily German on our paternal side and primarily English and some Irish and Scottish on our maternal side.

The three siblings ethnicity estimates are compared in the following table:

Reference Populations LLL MLH LKA
England, Wales and Northwest Europe 50% 95% 69%
Germanic Europe 46% 2% 31%
Ireland and Scotland 4% 3%

These estimates are remarkably similar, considering the overlap in the geographical areas of the reference populations and the variation in the amounts of DNA inherited by each sibling from their grandparents and earlier generations. For example, MLH appears to have inherited less DNA from the paternal line (primarily German) than did LLL and LKA.

Honoring my Grandparents — September 9, 2018

Honoring my Grandparents


Henry Leisher is my paternal grandfather. He was born Heinrich Leiser 17 November 1844 in Eglesbach, in the Offenbach district in what was then the Grand Duchy of Hesse. He came to the United States in 1855 with his family; they settled in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin. He served in Civil War. After the war, he farmed in Illinois, Kansas and Oklahoma. He died 29 November 1939 in Okeene, Blaine County, Oklahoma.

Frances Miller, my paternal grandmother, was born 24 September 1863 in Bond County, Illinois. She married Henry Leisher 27 October 1881 in Greenville, Bond County, Illinois. She died 12 April 1938 in Okeene, Blaine County, Oklahoma.

Scott Lee Irey is my maternal grandfather, He was born 17 November 1862 in Marion County, Ohio. Family stories indicate he led a colorful life, primarily as a cowboy, before he married my maternal grandmother 23 Dec 1904 in Arapahoe, Custer County, Oklahoma Territory, at age 42. He died 19 March 1934 in Waukomis, Garfield County, Oklahoma.

Cora Emeline Joseph, my maternal grandmother, was born 14 February 1874 in Hendricks County, Indiana. Her father died when she 3 years old. She  lived in Missouri, Nebraska and Kansas before moving to Oklahoma Territory. She taught school from age 16 to her marriage to Scott Irey. She died 11 July 1968 in Enid, Garfield County, Oklahoma.

My maternal grandmother is the only grandparent that I remember, as she lived with my parents until shortly before her death. Even though she and I spent considerable time together, I regret missing a golden opportunity to learn from her more about her ancestry. How I wish for a time machine that would take me back to the lifetimes of all four grandparents, providing the opportunity to hear from each of them, and to record, their experiences and knowledge of their ancestors’ lives.

Why “Migration from Europe to Oklahoma”? — September 7, 2018

Why “Migration from Europe to Oklahoma”?

Oklahoma as Migration Destination

Oklahoma is my birthplace; my parents were both born in Oklahoma Territory, before Oklahoma became a state. My paternal grandfather, Henry Leisher, homesteaded a farm in northeastern Blaine County, in 1892. Frances Leisher (born Miller) and the children moved from Kansas to Oklahoma between 1892 and 1895. The family is documented in the 1900 federal population schedule, Cimarron Township, Blaine County, Oklahoma Territory. My paternal grandparents, Scott Lee Irey and Cora Emeline Joseph, were married 23 December 1904 in Arapahoe, Custer County, Oklahoma Territory. All four grandparents died in Oklahoma and are buried there: the Leisher grandparents in Roselawn Cemetery, Okeene, Oklahoma; the Irey grandparents in Waukomis Cemetery, Waukomis, Oklahoma.

Europe as Migration Origin

Henry Leisher (born Heinrich Leiser) and his parents were all born in the Grand Duchy of Hessen. Adolph Miller, the father of Frances, was born in the Principality of Lippe; her mother, Frances Knosp, was born in the Grand Duchy of Baden. Immigration of my paternal line occurred in the mid 1800’s.

Immigration of my maternal lines occurred much earlier; most lines appear in the United States prior to 1800, with birth locations believed to be England, Scotland or Ireland.

DNA Estimate of Ethnicity

My ethnicity estimate from the recently-updated Ancestry DNA algorithm is:

  • England,Wales & Northwestern Europe                   50 %
  • Germanic Europe                                                           46 %
  • Ireland and Scotland                                                      4 %

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