Monday, July 22, 2013

Mystery Monday ~ Who Was the Father?

I have been researching my husband's paternal grandmother's family in Hungary, where the records have been microfilmed by the Family History Library. His grandmother's mother, Anna Honevald, was from Hőgyész, one of eleven children of Jacob Honevald and Marie Weisz.

Anna had an older sister, Betti. The last entry in the following image of 1878 birth records is a birth record for a child born out of wedlock:

Hőgyész, Tolna, Hungary, "Registers of Jewish births, marriages and deaths for Hőgyész (1842-1895)"
Birth no. 935. Salomon Honevald. February 20, 1878; Family History Library microfilm #642928.
Salomon was born on February 20. The mark in the column after the Hebrew indicates the baby is male. The following two columns indicate whether the birth is (ehelich) in wedlock or (unehelich) out of wedlock. You can see that Salomon has a mark in the "out of wedlock" column and the column for a father's name is blank.

The mother's name is Betti Honevald, of Hőgyész. The midwife was Regina Wimmer and the bris was 27 February.

The interesting thing about these birth records is that if a child died soon after its birth, the death date was recorded in the birth record. Salomon died on July 21, 1878.

I am able to confirm his death in this volume of 1878 death records on the same microfilm.

Hőgyész, Tolna, Hungary, "Registers of Jewish births, marriages and deaths for Hőgyész (1842-1895)"
Death no. 495. Salomon Honevald. July 21, 1878; Family History Library microfilm #642928.
The bottom entry here notes that Salomon Honevald died on July 21, 1878. The next marks note that he is male and unmarried. I'm not a reader of German or Hungarian, but I'm guessing the word in the next column (Unnfelich) means unknown or unnamed. Betti Honevald is the mother, living in Hőgyész.

Salomon died of Schwindsucht, which translates to Consumption. He was five months old, and was buried in Hőgyész cemetery.

Betti later went on to marry and have children, but there will always be a mystery as to who was the father of her firstborn son.


  1. Realize that her husband may also have been the father of Salomon. My great-great grandparents got legally married when they were already grandparents themselves. But they'd been religiously married as teenagers. They only formalized it when they needed to be married for legal reasons. That "legitimized" their children who had to use their mother's maiden name as their last name growing up and were able to change to their father's last name when they themselves were in their 20s. But the parents always considered themselves fully married.

    1. Lara, yes I did wonder if her husband, whom she married soon after the death of Salomon, was the father, but I doubt there is any way to prove it.

      Thanks for sharing the interesting story in your family.