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The Known Family of Robert V. Nightingale

Updated January 21, 2012

A few life-changing events make me ask, "Who is my family?" My mother died in 1990 and my father died in 1995. In 2002, I divorced my wife, Elizabeth, after 13 years of marriage. While separated I attended a family reunion with my sister for the decendents of my father's parents Raymond and Esther Nightingale. There I received a family book assembled by my living aunts with a genealogy chart.

Being a stickler for detail, I wanted to know how all these dates got there. Much of the information seemed incomplete.

In the last several years I've learned a great deal. I've found that my paternal line goes back to Cambridgeshire, England. Some of my ancestors on my father's side were from Ireland and fought in the Revolutionary war. The Nightingales settled for several generations in Evansville, Indiana before moving onto Vincennes. It's been a long, strange trip.

On my mother's side, I've found that nearly every one is from Germany, but it's hard to go back before then. I don't speak German fluently, so it's hard to make much headway or even find out what towns could have records.

What's evident in this project is that we are all from somewhere else. The Nightingales came to this country from England, sometime in 1830's. The mother family are from Germany, in the 1920s and 1880s.

If you're a distant relative starting your own research, drop me a line sometime.

In 2005 I married in New Buffalo, MI and then in 2006 I moved to Niles, Michigan. I've become active in a group here called the Friends of Silverbrook Cemetery, where I am the webmaster for the site, which contains over 20,000 grave listing, 10,000 photos and over 1,000 obituaries. It gives me a chance to share my love of genealogy and history.

In November 2011 I published a collection of my grandmother Alice Stiller's letters to my grandfather Bruno V. Stiller while he was held in the Alien Enemy Interment Camps during WWII in "Camp Letters: 1942 - 1945". It is be available on, Barnes and Noble, and local booksellers. The Facebook page for this book is

Robert Victor Nightingale


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