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Friday, October 24, 2014

52 Ancestors: #43 Mathias Joseph Nagel

Mathias Joseph Nagel, my 2nd-great-grandmother Christina Nagel's older brother, was born on 17 March 1845 in Hürth, Rhein-Erft, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany. His name at birth was Mathias Aussem. His parents, my 3rd-great-grandparents Johann Nagel and Anna Maria Aussem, did not marry until 31 August 1848. It was necessary to obtain permission to marry. At the time of his birth, Anna Maria was a widow. She had a son, Peter Esser, from her marriage to Wilhelm Esser. Perhaps Johann was not seen as being capable of financially supporting a wife, stepson, and new baby at that time. 

Mathias immigrated to the United States, and he married Mary Hill on 20 June 1873 in St. Louis, Missouri. When they married, he became a stepfather to Mary's daughter Martha, from her previous marriage to Josiah Howard. After their marriage, Mathias and Mary took a trip to Germany, probably to visit his family.  When they returned, they sailed from Bremen, Germany to New York on the Weser, and arrived on 11 August 1873. The couple lived in Jefferson City, Cole County, Missouri, and had three children together: John (born 5 March 1875), Sarah (born 11 January 1877), and Mathias (born 15 October 1878). 

Mathias worked as a landscape gardener; his father had also been a gardener. By 1875, he had a nursery business at the corner of Madison and Dunklin Streets in Jefferson City, Missouri. When the Missouri governor's mansion in Jefferson City was remodeled in 1887, he laid out the grounds. According to the September 1887 issue of the Gardeners' Monthly and Horticulturist, he had one of the most beautiful Sago palms west of the Mississippi River.

Mathias sold his nursery to Hugo Busch and Charles Purzner in 1890, and in 1891, for health reasons, he and his family moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico. He initially leased property, but then purchased 500 acres of land. In 1892, he decorated the Catholic churches with wreaths and evergreen strings. By 1894, he was shipping caña agria (also called canaigre) to Germany. In 1899, he built a sanitarium on his property, which consisted of three five-room stone houses. Patients came to stay to regain their health.

In 1900, Mathias and his sons struck a quartz ledge with ore containing gold and copper.

In 1914, a two-page article on the Forestry Service which had been written by Mathias was published in the Congressional Record, vol. 51, pages 11517-11518.

Mathias died in Santa Fe on 11 July 1922 and was buried on 15 July 1922 in Rosario Cemetery.

Mathias Aussem birth registration. Hürth (Rheinland). Bürgermeisterei. Zivilstandsregister, 1800-1875. Geburten 1833-1845. International Film 1237622. Salt Lake City, Utah: The Genealogical Society of Utah, 1978, 1979, 1981.

Mathias Nagel and Mary Hill marriage record, St. Louis, Missouri, 20 June 1873. Missouri Marriage Records, 1805-2002 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2007. Original data: Missouri Marriage Records. Jefferson City, MO, USA: Missouri State Archives. Microfilm.

New Mexican, 6 June 1891

New Mexican, 17 December 1892

New Mexican, 7 March 1894

New Mexican, 31 August 1899

New Mexican, 30 April 1900

American Forestry, vol. 20, 1914. Available from Google Books.

Mathias Nagel family, about 1910. I think my great-great-grandmother Christina (Nagel) Schneider, sister of Mathias, is also in this picture.

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