Bender is my husband's surname so I do not have any ancestors in this line, but my children do so I have been working on it. Gregg had always been told while growing up that his grandfather, Joseph Lane Bender had been adopted. Grandpa didn't talk much about it and just said that there were papers in the attic that would explain everything. well, Grandpa died in 1995 and one of the brothers took all the information from the attic and didn't share it with anyone. Somewhere along the line, it was said that everything was thrown out.
Fast forward 14 years to 2009; Gregg and I are visiting with his dad and talking about family history. Dad tells the same adoption story and also says that his brother has any and all papers that were in the house when Grandpa died. I decided to "play dumb" and wrote to the other brother asking if he had, or remembered, any of the information in the attic. Said brother says, "Oh sure, I have that. Didn't I share it with you? I thought I shared it with everyone." And he sent us copies of all the papers he had.
Low and behold, Grandpa was adopted, not once, but twice! His birth mother put him in a foundling home from where a couple named "Anderson" adopted him. When Grandpa was about 3, that couple could no longer care for him and gave him to the Benders! Now there is even less chance, I fear, of finding out anything about the birth parents, or at least the mother.
All this information was sent to Gregg's dad who was flabbergasted. He could not believe that his brother had kept the information from the rest of the family all that time.
So goes the search; all in a new direction but with several very good clues.