I was recently contacted by a previously unknown fifth cousin, Andrea, from Bremen, Germany. We share fourth great-grandparents, Peter Joseph Mauren and Anna Maria Minwegen. Her branch of the family remained in Germany while my third great-grandparents emigrated to America in 1840.
Andrea’s search began recently with a family chronicle written by her second great-grandfather, Franz Xaver Mauer, in 1936 when he was 83 years old. He describes in detail his ancestors, their occupations and where they lived. He was born after my third great-grandmother, Anna Catharina Mauren, his aunt, left for America. Although he never met her, he heard that she and her husband Nicolas Pohl celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary in America (in 1872).
Andrea graciously shared with me an electronic copy of her family chronicle. It is a great resource and is something I never would have found in a library or online collection. It is one of the rewards of publishing my research online.