Our Own Dear Bob Mathia

Bob Mathia, Karen Matthia Aland and Kurt Matthia researching together
at the FamilySearch Library in Salt Lake City, May 16, 2005

To this date, no one has contributed more to Mathia – Matthia Family research than Bob Mathia. For this alone we owe Bob a debt of gratitude that extends into the mid-1990s. Furthermore, Bob’s love and cheerful optimism kept us going through hours of searching of unindexed records which were only to be found on endless reels of microfilm. All the time we had to keep rigorous records of source citations for every person and event.

We not only slogged through Polish and German paleography, but also gathered and organized Mathia – Matthia records from other parts of the world via our early-Internet Mathia – Matthia website. The software was crude, we connected at first through dial-up modems. We learned the HTML, SQL and PERL languages — in addition to Polish, German and Latin, of course. Here is a computer generated version of the typical handwriting in the church baptism, marriage and burial books. But the books were written with hand-carved quill pens dipped into hand-mixed ink. Not an easy feat for three senior citizens!

“Mathia-Matthia Family Organization”

So, Bob, we love you dearly! Now you’ve gone ahead to be again with your dear Marion and to meet all those other dear loved ones whose earthly records we have gathered and preserved. Please give our love to all of them, as we are not far behind. So soon you’ll be introducing them all to us!

Love, Kurt, Sheela, Karen and all your grateful cousins!

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