Saturday, February 20, 2010

Surname Saturday - The Fritzley Family of Germany and Pennsylvania

This Surname Saturday, I'm reaching out for some help with my family line. I've had a great deal of trouble finding information on the origin on the surname Fritzley. This is my maternal grandfather's last name. His father's last name was Fritzler, on the ship manifest from Germany, as well as some census records, but I'm not sure if this was his last name in Germany, or if it was shortened when he immigrated (a common situation among immigrants to the United States at the time). According to's surname search, Fritzler is “patronymic from a pet form of Fritz,” which in turn is a pet form of the name Friedrich. I have not yet found any other sources to verify that this is the origin of Fritzley. indicates that Friedrich comes from Germanic words for “peace” and “power” - a very interesting combination indeed. I haven't met a lot of other Fritzleys. My line of the Fritzley family has lived in Pennsylvania since they immigrated from Germany, as far as I can tell. If you have any other information about this surname that you would be willing to share, I would be very appreciative.

Here is my line of the Fritzley family:

1.My mother, Laura Louise Fritzley, b. Pittsburgh, PA. Her father was:
2.William Frederic Joseph Fritzley, b. 27 Jan 1922 in Pittsburgh, PA, d. 15 Feb 1998 in Pittsburgh, PA. He married Helen Ada Brenton. His father was:
3.William Frederic Joseph Fritzley, b. 2 Feb 1888 in PA, d. 1952 in Pittsburgh, PA. He married Anna Kane. His father was:
4.Christian Fritzler or Fritsler, b. abt 1851 in Baden, Germany, d. before 1910 in PA. He immigrated to the US in 1866, with his father and mother. He married Sophia (unsure of surname). His father was:
5.George Fritzler or Fritsler, b. abt 1819 in Baden, Germany, d. unknown in PA. He married Christiana (surname unknown).
That's what I've got, from census records and ship manifests. Currently working on finding some primary sources from Germany. This will be a major focus in my research later, as I earn my Germany Records certificate from NIGS.
Also, this makes 2 personal research posts in a row, so my next entry will be about the class I'm currently taking at NIGS, Methodology Part 2. Promise!

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