Brick Wall Case Studies #15: Finding a family's address in St Louis

A Laux family descendant wanted to know where the Laux family lived in St Louis in order to go visit the old family home. Census records and a death certificate led to their address.



What We Knew

  • Gladys Mae Laux was born in about 1926. She died in Arkansas about 15 years ago and had the married name of Gladys Mae Dankenbring.
  • The parents of Gladys were named Harry Laux and Bernice Gerth. Harry passed away when his daughter was about 9 years old. Bernice then married George Bryant. The family lived in St Louis, Missouri.
  • A descendant of this family had visited his mother's neighborhood years ago with his mother and wanted to return there again but needed an address to help locate the family's home in the area.


Records We Located

  • We put the information known by the descendant about the family into the FamilySearch.org Family Tree. Once the basic information was listed, we used searches within the records on FamilySearch.org and the record hints to find the family in several records including tombstone records on FindaGrave.com, and the 1930 and 1940 census records. The census records listed the family as residing in St Louis but did not give any address.
  • We searched the city directories for St Louis but Harry Laux was not listed.
  • We searched for a death of Harry Laux in the Michigan death index on Ancestry.com. There was a Harry O Laux listed as died in 1935 who appeared to be the correct individual.
  • Many death certificates for the state of Michigan are available through the Missouri Secretary of State website. We searched for Harry Laux there and examined his death certificate. The death certificate listed the address where the Laux family was living in St Louis in 1935 as 5011 Claxton Ave. This was a specific address in the city that could be used to locate the family's home in St Louis.


Conclusion


The Laux family was living at 5011 Claxton Ave in St Louis in 1935. The documents and sources we gathered are found on the person page of Gladys Mae Laux and her family members in the FamilySearch Family Tree, ID GSSM-47V.




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