Family Histories

Published Family Histories

by Ann C. Sherwin

The Heckathorn FamilyThe Heckathorn Family: Charles Heckathorn and Nancy Whitla of Columbiana and Carroll Counties, Ohio, and Isabella County, Michigan; Their Ancestors and Descendants (1981)
77 pp., soft cover. Copies still available for $15 (includes shipping).

Descendants of Charles and Nancy are carried down to 1981 in a lineage chart. The family is descended from the two Jacob Heckendorns, father and son, who came to America in 1750. Since the book was published, their European place origin has been identified as Retschweiler, Alsace, and the ancestry has been further traced to Langenbruck, Switzerland. I am grateful to Hollis A. Hackathorn of Bridgeport, Ohio, for this additional information. The Whitla line traces back to Irish immigrant William Whitla (c1770-1837). 


The Gilson FamilyThe Gilson Family: Featuring George and Mary Gilson of Berrien County, Michigan, and Including the Related Families of Landon and Kunzman (1983)

The Gilsons are traced back to colonial Massachusetts. The Landons go back to Daniel Landon, who died before 1746 in Connecticut. The Kunzman section focuses on Engelhardt Kunzman(n), who emigrated from Oberwössingen, Baden, in 1846, and whose ancestry has been traced back to the early 17th century. Although the book is out of print, it can be found in libraries, and I would be glad to answer specific queries about its content. 


The Renz Family: Featuring Jakob Ulrich Renz and Maria Barbara Schneider of Weil im Schönbuch and Pfrondorf, and Including the Schwarz Family of Münster am Neckar (1988)

Members of this family settled in Berrien County, Michigan. Pfrondorf is the village featured in the photographs on this Web site. One of the photographers, the late Wilhelm Künstle, was married to a Renz descendant and shared my interest in family history. I am grateful for his help in fleshing out the story.  Although the book is out of print, I would be glad to answer specific queries about its content.