"If you can't get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance"
-George Bernard Shaw


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Gottlieb Piltz



Friday, June 4th at 2 p.m. in Oakwood City Cemetery in Traverse City, Michigan. myself with several other board members and other Grand Traverse Area Genealogical Society Members, dedicated the headstone for Austrian born stone cutter, Gottlieb Piltz. 

Gottlieb was an Austrian born stone carver who came to our area of Michigan.  It was brought to the attention of the Genealogical society that Gottlieb had no headstone marking his grave in Oakwood Cemetery.  One only needs to walk around Oakwood itself to see Gottlieb's work.  Many other local cemeteries also have his works found in them.  My own Great-Great-Great-Great Grandparents have a headstone carved by Gottlieb Piltz.  My GGGGGrandparent's are buried a short distance from Gottlieb Piltz and I was able to show a couple of people who are descendents of Gottlieb their stone as an example of his work.
This is my 4th Great Grandparents stone.  Lorenz (Laurentius) and Barbara Courtade.  Lornez's information is on the other side of the stone.


The interesting thing about Piltz is that he signed his work, which is very unusual.  He also seemed to prefer working in marble as it is a softer stone than Granite and easier to carve.  Not only are his stones ornately decorated, but they frequently have various amounts of text in different fonts. 

Our program consisted of a Big Piper, our Cemetery Committee Chair person, Kathi Farley, giving a history of Gottlieb, the Fife Lake (Michigan) Historical Society Present and retired minister giving a blessing and unveiling to stone, which was set that morning just before the dedication, myself playing Beethovan's "Ode to Joy" on my clarinet and our past president, Mary Briggs, giving a thanks to all those who helped make the headstone project possible.
Members of GTAGS (back row) and decsendents of Gottlieb Piltz (front) that attended the dedication.  That's me on the far Right in the pink and black.

This is me playing my clarinet during the ceremony. That's my Mom holding my umbrella over me while I was playing.  Thanks Mom!

Happy Hunting!


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