Peter Hansen & Angela Susanna Konzen’s Marriage Application – Angela is listed as Susanna Konzen on her marriage application, but, as far as we know, that’s the only time she didn’t go by Angela.
According to Vernon Auderer’s book on the Konzens, Angela Susanna was born in Rollingen, Germany (this is actually Ralingen, Germany) and her husband Peter Hansen was born in Oberbettingen, Germany. Since Vernon wrote that all of the Konzens (Theodore, John, Catherine, and Angela Susanna) were probably from Rollingen, I’m guessing that Vernon came to this conclusion because Catherine’s gravestone says that she was born in Rollingen, so he must have assumed that they were all from there. That was a great assumption at the time, but now we’ve proved that Theodore, John, Mathias, and Margaretha were from Kruchten, Germany.
I ordered a microfilm of Ralingen parish records and in it I found a lot of Kons/Konz/Konzens. There was a Nicolas Konzen who had daughters named Susanna (born Jan. 27, 1819), Angela (Feb. 1, 1825), and Catherine (Feb. 6, 1830). Nicolas and his wife Anne Marie Dockendorf also had five sons, Wilhelm (Jan. 29, 1821), Theodore (Nov. 13, 1822), Nicolas (Oct. 1, 1827), Christopher (Aug. 9, 1832), and Henry (Feb. 8, 1835).
Our Angela Susanna was born, according to Vernon, in February of 1822 (various census records state that she was born in 1820, 1824, 1823, and February of 1822). However, at this time giving accurate dates of birth (or really an information) to census takers wasn’t as important as it is today. Also, Angela Susanna and her family probably had a thick German accent which probably made it hard to understand any information they gave the census taker. So it’s hard to tell if Angela Susanna would be Angela or Susanna of Ralingen, but my guess is that she was Angela since she was born on Feb. 1, 1825.
This is based on the fact that there is a census record stating she was born in February and none of the censuses I’ve found her in state that she was born before 1820. I’d expect to see that if Angela had been born in 1819. We’re not sure why she would’ve gone by Susanna (especially if that was her sister’s name) on her marriage record, but maybe she started using Susanna as her middle name after her sister Susanna died (if she did die young or before Angela). Maybe we’ll know someday.
Angela Konzen’s birth
I’ve also written a letter to Ralingen asking for a copy of their family book, hopefully we’ll hear back from them soon. It also seems very likely that the Ralingen family of Konzens are related to our Kruchten/Lellig Konzens because the names Theodore and Wilhelm are also names of some people in our family during that time period. And because what are the chances of two (or more) different Konzen families arriving in the same county in Iowa at around the same time? It really seems that they have to be related somehow…
*Note – after more research we realized that we are 99.9% certain that Angela Susanna Konzen is not the daughter of Nicolas Konzen & Anne Maria Dockendorf of Ralingen. We don’t know if Angela Susanna is or is not a Konzen (yes, there’s been a little debate about that), but we have been unable – so far – to find a family for her.