Sunday, January 31, 2010

Kilgore / Simmons Maves' Letter

Gosh, you guys are just lucky today; that I have time to make yet another post on the Maves/ Mewes/ Mews family name. I kind of want to rehash something I mentioned about the name change a few posts down the page. I had said that even in coming to Amerika they already had the name changed. At least in the ship list I read about the Bark Mississipppi the name was not Mewes or Mews.

As I was browsing for some information off the web with google [ Of course what else] I ran into the Kilgore / Simmons link with a Maves letter [ Which is no surprise. ] from Wilbur Wesley Maves to Bud. { I am not sure who he is.] on the topic of his family from Stettin Poland. He mentions this name change. I find it amusing for some reason and so I am going to cut a part or portion of it for you. [wink] Then a little discussion about the letter. If you pay attention you can pick up a couple new facts. I helped a little by highlighting a few things to draw your attention.

It rings a little like an obit. I read in the Eau Claire Leader the other day.
[Note: Which I still must find to document the date]

16 Oct 1982

Dear Bud,
My son, Carl Edwin Maves, forwarded the letter, which you wrote to him on July 10, to me. I am Wilbur Wesley Maves, born 25 Feb 1908 in Superior Wis. of parents who were both born in Dunn County. I am assuming that you refer to Menomonie, the county seat of Dunn Co. located near Eau Claire, Wis., in your letter. I am sure we are related but just how I am not sure. I am sorry that I haven't answered your letter sooner, but there are many reasons; one of the most important is that we (my wife and I) were in Wisconsin most of the summer.

I will try to find some Maves related to both of us. My ancestor, who founded the family in America was John, Gottlieb, Julius Mews according to a niece who has done research on the family tree. My father always referred to Gottlieb as his grandfather and I have no idea where the names John and Julius came from. My great-grandfather Gottlieb Maves was quite a guy. I admire him very much. For one thing, he was so 'fed-up' with everything European that he anglicised the name. Mews in German is pronounced Maves (M, A as in Ahab, Vay the German W and S). I have much more information on the Mews spelling of our name but will save it for a later time.

Gottlieb Maves had a large family, as was common in those times. Charles (my grandfather) was the oldest. Fred, the second oldest, lived on a farm near his brother Charles. When I was small my dad sometimes visited his Uncle Fred and I played with some of my second cousins; however I cannot name any names. It is possible that our relationship is through my dad's Uncle Fred. Others in Gottlieb's family were Theodore, once a street-car motorman in Milwaukee, but I remember him as a farmer somewhere in Central Wisconsin. Here, too, a relationship is possible.

John, who I remember well was a florist in Eau Claire, and died with no children. Sarah lived in Superior and had four daughters. William lived near Appleton (I should have mentioned him before Aunt Sarah) changed the name Maves back to Mews. The youngest Edward lived in Milwaukee and I am very familiar with his children, my cousins (once removed) Victor, Julia & Violet. My niece also mentions August and Heinrich as two sons of Gottlieb. This is a surprise to me as I have no recollection of my father ever talking about his Uncle August or Uncle Heinrich. I don't know that they lived to adulthood, but if they did here too is a possible connection.

And this passage.

There was, also, a group of Maves' who lived near Stanley in Wisconsin. My father, who was a minister and official in the Evangelical Church (now United Methodist) was well known and travelled extensively in Wisconsin. He often visited his 'cousins' and friends in Stanley. They (the Stanley Maves') and my dad never did establish their exact relationship. Our ancestor, Gottlieb, came to America in 1853. Their ancestor, whom they were not sure was a brother or cousin of Gottlieb arrived, as I remember, about 10 years later. By coincidence, they also anglicized the name.

Many years ago my dad had a cousin Fred who lived in Fairfield Cal. In fact, our family corresponded (Christmas Cards etc) with Edna Maves, whom I believe was Fred's widow. How are Fred and Edna related to you? My dad visited some relatives who lived near Napa years ago but I don't recall that they carried the name Maves.

I guess this is enough for a first letter. I look forward to hearing from you and am interested in how we may be related. Incidently, I am an electrical engineer, retired from the faculty of the California State Polytechnic University (Cal Poly) in Pomona. I lived and worked in Milwaukee in 1943 when we moved to California. Here I worked in industry until 1966 when I joined the faculty at Cal Poly.

Sincerely, Bill W.W.Maves.

(In the margins of the first page is this note: You might tell your sister that my cousin Florence Maves Heft lives in Sunnyvale Phone 735-1455)

Well there it is, a filled letter of info. The best read letters are those with Genealogical intent. The Kilgore tree carries another letter too. By the way, I found them by accident fishing for info on Wilhelmina Meyer and saw the Taylor namen so I stopped to bite. I love Genealogy accidents!

As promised a discussion, though small, on the letter.

1- Julius a first name was Gottliebs fathers name.

2- Stanley Wi. A few years back a fellow worker/and part time pastor mentioned a Husby family living at Stanley. I was not then looking for a Jacob Husby did not pay attention to the names he mentioned. And now it is interesting to read of other Maves there.

3- It is not surprising to find settlement at Milwaukee, which is not that far from Chicago. One of the earliest settlements in Wi was Reedsburg, Loganville,Sauk co, [Baraboo a place as well]. Plus, others passengers on the ship they traveled with had intentions to go to Milwaukee.

4- One must remember the spelling of Mews while searching. And variations in spellings. Such as census spellings as in Gotlibb, Gotlib, or Gottlieb. Bill instead of William and John instead of Johann. I am sure this family angelized as soon as possible.

5- Is it right to correct a spelling error in somonee else's letter?

6- Bud is Clarence 'Bud' Emil Maves, who died 1984.

Well, we haven't discussed nearly all the highlights, but your still welcome to bring them up yourself, or anything you like. I just know that this little post is not so little anymore. I'll save more for later.

Note: Wilbur died 1994.

Source of info and letter here:

just me jo


A rootdigger said...

I wanted to make a note here about the area of Stanley and a little tip off. While I was working at Swiss Miss About ten or fifteen years ago a older pastor working there was from Stanley. While we were discussing family heritage, he mentioned he knew either Husby or Maves that he knew from Stanley. I think he mentioned a Ben. Now this is all recall of fifteen years later. So take it with a grain of salt.

Could it be possible both sides of the family could have been there? Maybe a connection to missing Johny Husaby?

A rootdigger said...

Jacob Husby or Jacob Johnson. I suspect he went to Duluth or twin cities of mn. Unless he stayed in Canada.

Big Sexy said...


I just stumbled across this site when I was researching my family for the first time. What an awesome find!

My name is Michael Maves. I am the son of George Maves and Joanne (Wallis). George is the son of Fred and Edna (John) of the Califonia Maves. I live in California. My father passed away 7years ago. I have lived in Sacramento California all of my life.

Sadly, I know next to nothing about my family history. I know my Aunt Grace Maves who married Wallace Pardi and my Uncle Melvin Maves who married Lorraine (don't know the maiden name). All of them have passed.

A rootdigger said...

Well, big Sexy, I hope you looked around the website for more information. I did actually go to the books for the data on the Maves in dunn co court house. Later I discovered the works done by Linda which is still available online with indication of copyright. That copy write makes me nervous, but I took what I could anyway because I had looked it upmyself too. She has put in the cememtery information to at the local forums.

You are lucky in finding this, just as I was lucky in finding that letter when I started out. I hope you will stay in touch.

Some one else a few years back also did all of the family herself at the local history center, If I had known, I would have given her sources for what I knew. She did just fine. her connection is through Caroline family and the Roth family. I may have mentioned it here at the blog, before too.