What's New

Date of Last GEDCOM Import: 7 Jun 2021 19:40:58

It's been a busy time on this vitter.org website during the pandemic! We got lots done. Our big launch of the genealogy site on vitter.org was 1 September 2020, and since then we've added several bells and whistles. For example, one recent addition is a better "relationship finder" to determine the varous ways how two people may be related to one another. To use it, go to the Individual (detailed) view of the page of one of the persons, click on the "Connection" tab, fill in the name of the other person, and click the Search button.

The main addition to our website has been several "histories" — the name we use for our short stories about various relatives and events. We now have more than two dozen histories. You can find them on the Relativity Research page.

The histories are ongoing — constantly being updated as we find new discoveries. For example:

  • We have extended our information considerably about the Artigues family (Jeff Vitter's relatives on his dad's side) by going through the online archives through the early 1600s in Salies-du-Salat and other towns in the Haute-Garonne and Hautes-Pyrénées departments of SW France.
  • We have also learned a lot more about relatives on Jeff's mom's side, especially around Uzan in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department of SW France. The history "Après le « Aha! moment » (et avant aussi ! )" details the new findings and includes several photos of various Vitter trips during the generations to SW France. We visited the farm Larneilh of Jeff's mom's maternal grandfather Jean Ferran dit Larneilh and saw the monument in Uzan that our family helped fund in 1921 to commemorate those from Uzan who died fighting in WW I, which include one of Jeff's 1st cousins 2x removed.
  • We added several new people into the family tree, including lots of info from the Baldwin family, with a history of Baldwin Wood, the superintendent of the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board and renowned inventor of the centrifuge and screw pumps used to keep New Orleans high and dry. His inventions are still used in New Orleans and all around the world. We wonder if Jeff's great aunt Rose "Tawo" Ferran knew him, given how much time she spent battling the S&WB! ;-) (That's a long story for another time.)
  • On Sharon Vitter's paternal side, we are getting exciting new info about her ancestors from DNA information. In particular, there's lots of new Y-DNA analysis that has corrected some former misconceptions about ancestry. Sharon's Kauffman ancestry as recorded in the history "Mennonite Beginnings" seems to be correct. However, another branch headed by Michael Kauffman (1675–1718), which was first thought to be connected to Sharon's line of Kauffmans, is actually a totally separate line not related via male-male links, although possibly the two Kauffman lines could be related through intermarriage during earlier generations in Switzerland or the Rhineland-Palatinate. We will continue to upate the histories about her Weaver ancestors and Kauffman ancestors, who immigrated to the USA from Switzerland and the Rhineland-Palatinate, as we get more information. On the Weaver side, we first need to get a male Weaver descendant to get a Y-DNA analysis done. Sharon's brother Don Weaver recently ordered a Y-DNA test, so we may get some new information soon.

Sharon has been published, along with her photo, on page 91 of the April 2021 issue of Mennonite Family History. It's a letter about the Weaver family, which immigrated to Pennsylvania from Switzerland in 1767.

Other recent additions to vitter.org:

  • You can view some specific genealogy charts of ancestors by generation on the Genealogy Charts page.

  • In mid-February, we launched our new Cemeteries page, where you can find all the cemeteries and burial places listed in our family tree. Using it on a smartphone is a smart way to visit cemeteries and see the tombs and gravestones of relatives. There's also a complementary Headstones page with all our photos of tombs and headstones.
  • We added language capabilities for six other languages besides English: Chinese, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, and Spanish. They allow you to see most of the text on the main page in translated form, and all the family tree forms and instructions are language-friendly. You can choose your preferred language in the menus at the top and bottom of the pages.
  • Jeff's mom's fabulous cookbook, Thursday Night Cookin': Mimi's Recipes for a Happy Home, is now available online. It's our favorite!

Stay tuned for some upcoming new histories. Here are two being planned:

  • The Mystic Krewe of Atlantis I and II, which rolled from 4100 Vincennes Place around the neighborhood in uptown New Orleans — complete with floats, krewe doubloons, a band, and a broadcast parade progress.
  • A story about Nazi abuse survivor Ingeborg Mayer and her family, many of whom settled in Cleveland in the Mississippi Delta, which developed a thriving Jewish community. Jeff's dad is related to the Tinney family, who married into the Friedman/Reichenberg/Mayer family of Würzburg, Germany. We will include the gripping oral history interview (on video) that Inge Mayer gave about her harrowing experiences during the Third Reich.

And please sign our guest book. We always look forward to hear from you!