The Origin of the Crucifix

May 17 On tour with genealogist Margaret Weiler in the Schwaebische Alb of Germany, we learned yesterday something very interesting from the former pastor of a very old church in the town of Heiningen. “Crucifixes were developed in Spain at the end of the 14th century to remind people of the hideous treatment of Jesus […]

A Visit to Dettingen unter Teck, Germany

May 16 By Margie Weiler This is my 4th tour with James Derheim, who has taken me to many ancestral villages, both mine and my husband Bill’s, in many south and western areas of Germany and the Zurich area of Switzerland.  I always have had a wonderful time seeing for myself where these ancestors lived […]

Oberwaelden – a village with more than 850 years of history

May 12                   We are on the trail of ancestors with genealogist Margie Weiler in the area around Goeppingen, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany. One of the highlights of Sunday was a visit to the hilltop hamlet of Oberwaelden. The church there, St. Nikolaus (built pre-Reformation in the early 1400s) […]

The Church of St. Margaret in Wahlhausen, Germany

  April 29 The little church in the riverside village of Wahlhausen, Thuringen, Germany is a testament to what a lack of heating can do to preserve art. The Church of St. Margaret was built on the bank of the Werra River in 1718 through donations by the local ruling family, the von Hansteins, who […]

Hasselbach and Allendorf Ancestral Discoveries

April 22 and 23 Dennis Jenkins from Grand Junction, Colorado wanted to find out more about his ancestral ties to the hamlet of Hasselbach near Weilburg, Hessen, Germany. Dennis takes the record for waiting the longest between first learning about European Focus Private Tours (1998) to actually stepping off the plane to begin his personal […]

Finding Ancestral Connections in Frankenthal, Germany

April 17 Paul Skelton wanted to see where his German ancestors lived before emigrating to Australia. And so, as part of an extended multiple week long trip that also included England and Ireland, Paul and his wife Rhonda and their son Andrew booked a short week-long tour with European Focus which revolved around a visit […]

You mean you actually will custom-design and lead a trip for just two people?

We get this question often at our retail store “European Focus Village” in the heart of Sarasota, Florida. The answer is, “Yes, all of the time!” In fact, more than half of the 10-15 trips we design and lead each season (March through October) are with repeat clients, couples, who have been completely spoiled by […]

An Ancestral Discovery Worth the Climb

(From October 2) We spent three memorable days and nights in the beautiful valley around Prato allo Stelvio, in Sud Tyrol, technically in Italy but the locals all believe they are Tyroleans first, Italians a distant second. We were told by the mayor of the town, perhaps a distant relative of our guest, to go […]