As I mentioned in last month's article, my interest in family history began with the history of the Winkler family written by John Winkler about 1965. In addition, my grandmother had the bonnet, which her grandmother, Elizabeth Bertschy (Bartschie) Winkler, wore on the voyage to America. As most of us do, I wish I had asked more questions about the trip to America. It is hard for us to fathom the courage and perseverance of our ancestors as they left their homes to journey to a new land.
The Winklers arrived in New York on the ship Metropolis on May 22, 1855. Listed in the passenger list was Joseph Winkler aged 34, Elise 35, Rudolph 9, Joseph 8, Marie 6, Gottfr. 4, Johann 2, Ludwig. Marie (Mary) was my great-grandmother.
My grandmother, Lizzie Niemann Romick, was the daughter of Mary. Mary told her children about climbing on the luggage in the ship to look out the portholes. She had vivid memories of seeing whales bumping against the ship. She also related that her brother Ludwig died during the voyage and was buried at sea.