Memorial Markers

My husband Jim is a fan of mail-order catalogs and, while he seldom places an order, does like to browse the merchandise.   He recently came across memorial markers for pets.  The images showed  resin cat and dog memorials with wings attached (probably to indicate they have gone to pet heaven).

Even though we don’t have pets in our household, I’m not surprised Jim spotted these.  Last year he took over 35,000 gravestone images and uploaded them to BillionGravescom, covering all of the cemeteries in Ames and Story County, Iowa.

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Memories of Grandparents John and Leona Schaefers

Where the tradition began I don’t know. She was born Leona Theresa Ernster and married John H. Schaefers. They were our grandparents but we, and all the grandchildren (20 in all), knew them as Ma and Pa. It was a name meant with affection and honor.

Grandma (a/k/a Ma) was a wonderful cook. She made fried chicken that was beyond wonderful. Maybe her secret was the cast iron skillet she used. I remember she had a large garden (and wore a big sunbonnet when working in it) and would can much of the produce. I loved being asked to go down in the “cellar” and bring up a jar of her delicious peaches. Thinking back, maybe the sugar content was the secret ingredient! But, oh, they tasted so good. On her cupboard she had a cookie jar in the shape of a sailor she kept filled with homemade chocolate chip cookies (or until the grandchildren discovered them!)

She was an impeccable housekeeper, and I mean spotless! The farmhouse was not “modernized” and had no running water, although there was a hand pump by the kitchen sink as well as a claw foot bathtub. The farm had an outdoor toilet, but with a twist … Grandma had taken left over wallpaper and applied that to the inside walls. To this day hers is the only outhouse that I know had the touch of an interior decorator. Like I said, she was an excellent housekeeper. Everything was spotless.

She was a no-nonsense person and a hard worker. How else would she and Grandpa survived the Great Depression?

We spent many holidays at their home and I have memories of a big table where we all sat. There was no separate “kids’ table.” Some of us younger grandchildren sat on catalogs so we could sit comfortably on a chair. Before we left for the day, Grandpa would get out his violin (more likely a “fiddle”) and entertain us. He never had music lessons but learned to play “by ear.”  On   Christmas the last song was always “Silent Night.”  When he concluded, Pat remembers we knew it was time to leave, always with a bit of sadness in our hearts.

There was a hand-crank telephone that hung on the wall of the dining room. Grandpa wasn’t used to conversing on it, so when he did talk he was to the point and did not waste words. I remember he used to shout into the mouth piece as if he thought the person on the other end could hear him better.

Grandpa was a sentimental person and so in love with Grandma. We would ride with him to the bottom of a hill where their mailbox (perhaps a half mile from their farm) was located and on the return trip he would stop to pick wildflowers for Grandma.

On their bedroom dresser was a wind-up alarm clock that had a rather loud, but rhythmic “tic-toc” sound. To this day, that sound is a very comforting one for me. I attribute that to the calm that prevailed in their house.

One of Grandma’s strangest words was “dasn’t”, as in “You dasn’t do that.” I think she meant “dare not.”

Memories from my sister Pat:

Our cousin Evelyn and I made a mud pie together in the playhouse out in their shelter belt, and proudly showed Grandpa as he came by. To our pleasant surprise he took a bit of it and we thought that was hilarious! I also remember Grandma with her large sun bonnet, feeding all her chickens, plus a few ducks and geese.  She actually would give us a duck egg or a goose egg to mix in with our mud concoctions, which made mud pie/mud cake activities especially fun.  She never gave us a chicken egg though because I am sure she sold the chicken/hen eggs that she did not use for kitchen use.  

I also picture her in her chore aprons feeding the fowl with her buckets and even keeping some of the feed in her apron as she scattered the feed among the birds.  And she’d say:  “Here chicky chicky chick……”

Going fishing with our Grandpa was one of my favorite things to do when I stayed with them. I remember that sometimes he took me and all the fishing gear, on his tractor down to the James River, which was a short distance from their farm. We caught mostly bullheads which were edible during the late spring and early summer.

Once our cousin Carol was also staying at the same time I was.   Grandma must have used her creative mind to come up with something that Carol and I could do together.   Apparently Grandpa (and probably Carol) had already fished before I got there so Grandma had Grandpa put some of the fish in the stock tank.   That way, I got to go fishing with Carol out by the tank.   I remember that we had little tiny lines with hooks and worms, and that we got the fishing done right out of the tank.   I can’t remember whether or not Grandma cooked those bullheads up or not, but my guess is that she did.   Later in the summer, when the lakes got mossy, and the river was lower and slower, our mom and Grandma said that it was too late in the season to eat “muddy tasting” bullheads.

Memories from my sister Amy:

Grandma having to peruse the salad bar in a restaurant before sitting down – we’d drive from restaurant to restaurant sometimes.  Only once did it take 3 tries before getting it right.

I remember her kindness.  She never was cross with me.  Once I saw some earrings I liked and asked Mom if I could have them.  She said no of course.  I didn’t argue.  The next thing I knew Grandma had bought them for me.  I still have them.  I didn’t even think Grandma was beside me when I asked Mom, but she must have heard.  And her always having a box of dolls for me to play with when we visited.  One time she looked at me and said, “I bet you are too old for those dolls now.” I was relieved she understood and didn’t think I was being rude for not wanting to play with them.

I remember her good cooking.  Chicken, I think.  And cookies and pies.

I have absolutely no negative memories of Grandma. 

We were truly blessed to have them as our Grandparents!

Posted in Ernster Genealgoy, Memories, Schaefers Genealogy, South Dakota | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

By the Numbers: Counting the Ancestors

So how many direct ancestors do I have? It seems the answer would be an almost indeterminate number stretching back thousands of year. A more practical question is, how many ancestors have I correctly identified?

Let’s take a look at the numbers. I’ll leave the names for another time, but be assured there is a researched and documented person for each number I’ll use in this article.

I have two parents (second generation); four grandparents (third generation); eight great-grandparents (fourth generation); sixteen 2nd great-grandparents (fifth generation); thirty-two 3rd great-grandparents (sixth generation); sixty-four 4th great-grandparents (seventh generation) and one-hundred twenty-eight fifth great-grandparent (eight generation). With the number doubling each generation, the ninth generation would have 512 ancestors, and the tenth generation 1024 persons.

Well, theoretically those are the numbers … but a little pedigree collapse crept in along the way.

By that I mean the same persons occupied not one, but two, spaces in my direct lineage. Egidius Nipp (1765-1846) and his wife Theresa Willi (1771-1807) are my 4th great grandparents on two lines of my family.

My maternal grandparents, John Schaefers and Leona Ernster, both share a common set of second great-grandparents, that being Egidius Nipp and Theresa Willi. (Any, yes, that means my grandparents were third cousins to each other.)

But getting back to the numbers: I have calculated the per cent of direct ancestors that I’ve identified so far to the 8th generation. Here is how it breaks down:

Parents: 100%

Grandparents;: 100%

Great-grandparents: 100%

2nd great-grandparents 100%

3rd great-grandparents 100%

4th great-grandparents 93.75%

5th great-grandparents 29.6%

It seems that just like housework, genealogy research is never really “done.”  Time to pursue some of those missing fifth great-grandparents.

Posted in ancestry, Genealogy, Nipp Genealogy, Research, Schaefers Genealogy | Tagged | 2 Comments

Johnson Ancestors from Eggvena, Sweden

This is a summary of Johnson ancestors from Eggvena, Sweden.  It is in narrative form and was supplied by a distant (literally!) relative in Sweden.  Thank you, Agneta.

(The formatting is as the data was received.)  You can view this data in a different form at:

https://goo.gl/oAJLrd

(Follow the ancestry of Elizabeth Hanson Lohr.)  The Johnson family members who emigrated from Sweden first settled in Carver County, Minnesota.

Eggvena ancestors

1 Anna Mathilda Johnson, born 16 July 1868 in (East Union – Minnesota),

dead 23 Sept 1932. Resident in <USA>.

*** Generation I ***

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2 Johannes Johansson, born 11 Nov 1836 in (Eggvena),

dead 10 June 1898. Resident in <USA>.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Frank Gustav Johnson, born 23 Aug 1873, see ancestor 1.

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3 Johanna Johansdotter, born 1 June 1836 in Eggvena Hovgården,

Eggvena, dead 4 Jan 1906. Resident in <USA>.

Married to the previous ancestor

*** Generation II ***

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4 Johannes Bryngelsson, born 24 Nov 1794 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene.

Married 31 March 1818 in Eggvena to the following ancestor

Children:

Maria Johansdotter, born 23 Aug 1818, dead 19 March 1882.

Resident in <USA>.

Married 1838(ca) to

Anders Andersson, born 30 March 1818 in Eggvena Hovgården,

Eggvena, dead 1843(ca).

Married 1849(ca) to

Andreas Larsson, born 18 March 1824 in (Södra Härene),

dead 10 Feb 1903. Resident in <USA>.

Johanna Johansdotter, born 20 Oct 1820. Resident in <USA>.

Married to

Andreas Johansson, born 12 Jan 1820 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene. Resident in <USA>.

Britta-Stina Johansdotter, born 24 June 1823 in Eggvena Stommen,

Eggvena, dead 20 Jan 1890 in Eggvena Skattegården, Eggvena.

Married 11 Jan 1846 in Eggvena to

Anders Johansson, born 9 May 1823 in Eggvena Skattegården,

Eggvena, dead 18 Feb 1849 in Eggvena Skattegården, Eggvena.

Married 29 Aug 1851 in Eggvena to

Johannes Andreasson, born 10 Jan 1822 in Larstorp Mellangården,

Remmene, dead 29 May 1867 in Bråttensby Säteri, Bråttensby.

Anders Johansson, born 6 Sept 1832 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena,

dead 9 Jan 1916 in Eggvena Skattegården, Eggvena.

Married 1855(ca) to

Katarina Andersdotter, born 31 May 1834 in Eggvena Skattegården,

Eggvena, dead 3 June 1917 in Eggvena Skattegården, Eggvena.

Johannes Johansson, born 11 Nov 1836, see ancestor 2.

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5 Elin Andersdotter, born 30 March 1795 in Eggvena Stommen,

Eggvena.

Married 31 March 1818 in Eggvena to the previous ancestor

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6 Johannes Larsson, born 1 Oct 1808 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene,

dead 30 April 1886. Resident in <USA>.

Married 10 Feb 1833 in Eggvena to the following ancestor

Children:

Christina Johansdotter, born 10 March 1833 in Eggvena Hovgården,

Eggvena.

Married to

Jonas Johansson, born 24 Oct 1831 in Eggvena Skattegården,

Eggvena.

Johanna Johansdotter, born 1 June 1836, see ancestor 3.

Lars Johansson, born 28 June 1840 in Eggvena Hovgården, Eggvena.

Resident in <USA>.

Married to

Anna-Stina Andreasdotter, born 5 Oct 1844. Resident in <USA>.

Maja-Stina Johansdotter, born 8 Nov 1851 in Eggvena Hovgården,

Eggvena, dead 28 Sept 1919. Resident in <USA>.

Married to

Johannes West, born 16 Jan 1848, dead 22 Oct 1921. Resident

in <USA>.

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7 Britta Andersdotter, born 5 May 1810 in Eggvena Hovgården,

Eggvena, dead 30 April 1879. Resident in <USA>.

Married 10 Feb 1833 in Eggvena to the previous ancestor

*** Generation III ***

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10 Anders Svensson, born 12 Sept 1764 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene, dead 22 March 1827 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

Married 29 June 1788 in Eggvena to the following ancestor

Children:

Anders Andersson, born 1 July 1790 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena,

dead 12 July 1818 in Rakåsa Östergården, Fölene.

Married 25 March 1814 in Fölene to

Katarina Olofsdotter, born 26 June 1791 in Rakåsa Östergården,

Fölene, dead 29 Sept 1845 in Rakåsa Östergården, Fölene.

Maria Andersdotter, born 30 Sept 1792 in Eggvena Stommen,

Eggvena. Resident in <USA>.

Married 28 Jan 1815 in Eggvena to

Bryngel Stomberg, born 4 May 1791 in Eggvena Köparegården,

Eggvena, dead 7 March 1836 in Eggvena Köparegården, Eggvena.

Married 24 April 1847 in Fölene to

Magnus Kullgren, born 4 Jan 1791 in Fårekulla Stora, Remmene.

Resident in <USA>.

Elin Andersdotter, born 30 March 1795, see ancestor 5.

Johannes Andersson, born 3 May 1797 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena,

dead 6 June 1853 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

Married 0 .. 1826 to

Ingeborg Andersdotter, born 17 Dec 1807 in Larstorp Östergården,

Tarsled, dead 1 May 1852 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

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11 Katarina Johansdotter, born 12 Sept 1761 in Eggvena Ågården,

Eggvena.

Married 29 June 1788 in Eggvena to the previous ancestor

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12 Lars Johansson, born 29 Nov 1765 in Eggvena Ågården, Eggvena,

dead 28 Aug 1827 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene.

Married 7 Feb 1790 in Fölene to the following ancestor

Children:

Maria Larsdotter, born 12 Jan 1794 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene.

Married to

Anders Bengtsson, born 1790(ca).

Britta Larsdotter, born 12 Dec 1796 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene, dead 5 July 1839 in Skottstorp Stora, Eggvena.

Married 3 Feb 1822 in Fölene to

Johannes Larsson, born 1 Feb 1794 in Skottstorp, Eggvena,

dead 15 Feb 1831 in Skottstorp Stora, Eggvena.

Married 2 Nov 1832 in Eggvena to

Per Andreasson, born 6 Nov 1808 in Skottstorp, Eggvena,

dead 14 Aug 1886 in Skottstorp Stora, Eggvena.

Elin Larsdotter, born 3 Sept 1800 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene,

dead 8 April 1881 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene.

Married 3 Feb 1822 in Fölene to

Lars Andersson, born 30 Sept 1798 in Eggvena Östergården,

Eggvena, dead 23 March 1880 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene.

Stina Larsdotter, born 2 April 1803 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene.

Married to

Anders Andersson, born 1767(ca).

Johannes Larsson, born 1 Oct 1808, see ancestor 6.

Johanna Larsdotter, born 23 April 1811 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene.

Married to

Daniel Berggren, born 1807(ca).

Married to

Andreas Bengtsson, born 1810(ca).

Andreas Larsson, born 9 Oct 1815 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene.

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13 Kerstin Svensdotter, born 2 Jan 1771 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene, dead 13 Feb 1824 in Rakåsa Västergården, Fölene.

Married 7 Feb 1790 in Fölene to the previous ancestor

*** Generation IV ***

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22 Johan Gudmundsson, born 1725(ca), dead 17 Oct 1797

in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Erik Johansson, born 1750(ca) in Eggvena Ågården, Eggvena.

Elin Johansdotter, born 8 Aug 1758 in Eggvena Ågården, Eggvena,

dead 22 Jan 1811 in Lunda Östergården, Bråttensby. (My ancestors)

Married 28 Dec 1783 to

Jonas Andersson, born 14 Oct 1750 in Bråttensby Skattegården,

Bråttensby, dead 9 Dec 1807 in Lunda Östergården, Bråttensby.

Katarina Johansdotter, born 12 Sept 1761, see ancestor 11.

Lars Johansson, born 29 Nov 1765, see ancestor 12.

Maria Johansdotter, born 3 Feb 1770 in Lunda Östergården,

Bråttensby, dead 6 May 1831 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

Married 3 July 1796 in Eggvena to

Lars Bryngelsson, born 31 Jan 1775 in Rakåsa Västergården,

Fölene, dead 2 Feb 1860 in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

Gunnar Johansson, born 1775 in Lunda Östergården,

Bråttensby, dead 18 Nov 1816 in Töretorp Västergården, Fölene.

Married 1 Jan 1799 in Fölene to

Kerstin Hansdotter, born 1753(ca) in Venavalla Västergården,

Remmene, dead 24 Feb 1827 in Töretorp Västergården, Fölene.

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23 Britta Svensdotter, born 1731(ca), dead 11 Oct 1795

in Eggvena Stommen, Eggvena.

Married to the previous ancestor

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24 Johan Gudmundsson = 22

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25 Britta Svensdotter = 23

*** Generation V ***

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44 Gudmund Siggesson.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Johan Gudmundsson, born 1725(ca), see ancestor 22.

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45 Sara.

Married to the previous ancestor

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46 Sven Andersson, born 1703(ca), dead 16 April 1776

in Eggvena Ågården, Eggvena.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Britta Svensdotter, born 1731(ca), see ancestor 23.

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47 Märta Jonsdotter, born 1708(ca), dead 20 Nov 1768

in Eggvena Ågården, Eggvena.

Married to the previous ancestor

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48 Gudmund Siggesson = 44

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49 Sara = 45

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50 Sven Andersson = 46

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51 Märta Jonsdotter = 47

*** Generation VI ***

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88 Sigge.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Gudmund Siggesson, see ancestor 44.

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89 N.N..

Married to the previous ancestor

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92 Anders Andersson.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Sven Andersson, born 1703(ca), see ancestor 46.

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93 Elin Andersdotter.

Married to the previous ancestor

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94 Jon Andersson.

Married to the following ancestor

Children:

Märta Jonsdotter, born 1708(ca), see ancestor 47.

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95 Ingeborg Bryngelsdotter.

Married to the previous ancestor

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96 Sigge = 88

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97 N.N. = 89

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100 Anders Andersson = 92

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101 Elin Andersdotter = 93

mffmmf

102 Jon Andersson = 94

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103 Ingeborg Bryngelsdotter = 95

Posted in ancestry, Johnson Ancestry, Swedish Ancestry | 1 Comment

Fifty Years Post-Graduation

The class of 1965 from Bridgewater High School in Bridgewater, South Dakota, recently held their 50th class reunion.  Of the 32 persons who graduated that year, 23 people returned for this reunion.  What a fun time it was to see classmates and catch up with old times.

Actually, I think we were (and, hopefully, are) a healthy and hearty group.  (Only three members of our class are deceased.)  Our outlook on life was positive and we did not have a sense of entitlement.  We did not feel the world owed us a living. Our class obtained a very good education and, more importantly, we were good citizens.

We shared many memories including one of a spittoon (don’t ask!), tip money, unopened lockers, oversleeping on senior “skip day” … and many others.

Yes, we are a little bit more gray and have gained a few pounds.  But the best comment I heard concerned the picture that was taken at the reunion was: “youngest looking 50 year class in history.”  That may just be true!

For me, the reunion served as a sense of validation of who we were and are.  This early generation of baby boomers (born in 1946 and 1947) has done very well.  Thanks to the community of Bridgewater for providing us with the tools to succeed!

Posted in Memories, South Dakota | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Land of My Fathers

These are images of land the Schwans family owned in Vreschen-Bokel, Germany.   I believe the land came into the family when Diedrich Schwans (my great-great-grandfather) married Anna Aits.  Most likely my great-grandfather John Schwans was born here in 1848 and also my grandfather Fred Schwans in 1872.  The land remained in the family until sometime after 1881 when it was sold.

These photos were taken in September 2011 on our visit to Germany.  Jens and Jane Delger helped us find the parcel of land.  Truly one of the highlights of my genealogy life!

27Land NEtoSE  27Land SWView (2) 27Land SWView +Trees 27Land SWView27Land NMidtoSE

Posted in German Ancestry, Schwans Genealogy | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Boss, Nipp, Naescher, or Schaefers Relatives?

If you are researching descendants of Alois Nipp and Johanna Boss, John and Josephine Naescher, William Naescher and Caroline Nipp, Franciscus (Franz) Schaefers and Helena Leiffel, or John Schaefers and Caroline Nipp, then you may be interested in a Facebook Group I have created.

The name of the group (not surprisingly!) is Boss, Nipp, Naescher, Schaefers Genealogy. To keep the discussion on topic and avoid spam, the group is a closed one. Click the “Join Group” button if these families are your ancestors.

Here is the direct link:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1833727393519462/

Members of the Boss, Nipp, and Naescher families originated in Liechtenstein and emigrated to eastern Iowa in the early 1850s. Many of them migrated to South Dakota in the 1880s.

The Schaefers family originated from the Holtheim area of Germany. They also settled in eastern Iowa, especially Clayton County, in the 1860s. Descendants still live there as well as many other states, including South Dakota and Oregon.

I have previously blogged about members of these families and a query in the search box on this site will help locate them if you’re interested.

Please join  the discussion on our Facebook group if these are your ancestors!

Posted in ancestry, Boss genealogy, Facebook, Naescher Genealogy, Nipp Genealogy, Schaefers Genealogy | Leave a comment