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Margaret Bittlingmeier and Joseph Miele Marriage Certificate

Margaret Bittlingmeier was the daughter of William A. Bittlingmeier (1885-1969) and Anna Bauer (1888-1963). Joseph Miele's parents were Michael Miele and Felicia Andelino.

Document courtesy of Kathryn and Tom Peters

Margaret Bittlingmeier and Joseph Miele Marriage

Marriage Date: March 8, 1924

Marriage Location: Mayor's Office, Newark, NJ

Groom: Joseph Miele; age 21; born in U.S.; occupation: Electrician

Groom's Residence: 538 15th Avenue, Newark, NJ 

Groom's Father: Michael Miele

Groom's Mother: Felicia Andelino

Bride: Marge Bittlingmeyer; age 19; born in U.S.

Bride's Residence: 327 Fairmount Avenue, Newark, NJ 

Bride's Father: William Bittlingmeyer

Bride's Mother: Anna Bauer

Margaret, who was called Margie by the family, was called Nana by me and my siblings, then Gigi when she became a great-grandmother (GG).

I was 20 years old when I found out Margie had been married twice. You see, I had fallen in love with a divorced man, and my mother, Jackie, was upset when she learned of this. My mother had very controlling ways and very opinionated on how things should be done.

My grandma, Margie, was a very loving, nurturing person who was more open to acceptance of life’s flaws. So I spoke to her about my situation with my mother and she confided that my grandfather, Jack Bogner, was actually her second husband. Her first husband was a man named Joe Miele, who she married at the Mayor's office in Newark on March 8, 1924. Joe was born in Newark on July 12, 1903, the son of Italian immigrants Michael Miele and Felicia Andelino. Joe worked for a drug store in Elizabeth. He was 5' 7" tall, weighed 160 pounds, with brown eyes and hair and a dark complexion. After a few years, the marriage ended in divorce.

Before I had a chance to recover from this amazing revelation, my mother walked in on the conversation and cut it short. She told my grandmother (her mother) that she’d never speak to her if the subject was ever mentioned again.

It was never spoken of again until my grandfather’s wake. Jack was living with Margie in Manchester, NJ when he died on February 16, 1975. He was 72 years old. My mother and I were at the wake when Joe Miele showed up to pay his respects. It turns out that he knew Jack also. My mom reacted with great anger over this.

I was 20 years old but still a child in my mother’s eyes. I was told to leave the room and forbidden to ever mention it again.

I spent years saying to my husband, Larry, that I wish I had more information about my grandmother’s first husband. It wasn’t until our paths crossed with Kathryn and Tom Peters that I was given a great gift; they actually had a copy of the first marriage certificate. Now I have a better understanding of my grandmother, thanks to Kathryn and Tom. It's unfortunate, however, that I have not been able to locate a copy of Margie and Jack's marriage certificate. To the best of my knowledge, they were married around 1929.

On August 28, 1989, 83-year-old Margie, who we now called Gigi, died in Brick, NJ. She was buried with Jack at Graceland Memorial Park in Kenilworth, NJ. Although her birth certificate says she was born January 2, 1906, we always celebrated Gigi's birthday on December 2. On the 1915 New Jersey State Census, her birth date is written as Dec. 1905.

In 1946, Joe Miele became the founder and owner of the Lloyd Drug Company in Elizabeth. He bought a vacation home in Stanhope, New Jersey in 1951 where he spent most summers. In April of 1991, he retired from his drug company. Exactly one week after his 88th birthday, he died at Dover General Hospital on July 19, 1991. At the time, he was survived by his brother Victor Miele. Joe never remarried.

My grandmother continues to amaze me. She was divorced in an era when it was looked down upon. Then she went on to re-marry, this time to a husband of a different religion. Of course, her parents, William A. Bittlingmeier and Anna Bauer, were of different religions, one Protestant, the other Catholic. When Bill and Anna married, they agreed that religion wouldn’t be discussed in the home. Their beliefs were different, yet fundamentally the same.

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