Herman, Anna, their children and Herman’s sister, Anna Maria Langreck came to America on 24 Feb 1868. Herman was 48 and my grandfather (one of the twins) was 11. There was another female member who made the crossing with them. We do not know if she was another sister or their daughter. She died on board ship and was held and buried on American soil. Herman’s sister, Anna Maria (20 Aug 1826) married John Busche (9 Mar 1826) who died on 9 Apr 1870. She then married John Lichter 14 Feb 1871. She died in 1922 and is buried in St. Lucas.

John Henry married Mary Elizabeth Reicks (14 Feb 1858). Mary Theresa married Barney Reicks(16 Sep 1852). Anna (twin to grandfather) married Frank Ventiecker. When he died she married a Meiners. Her burial card states she died on 26 Oct 1829 and was buried in Carroll, IA. John (my grandfather) married Mary Meiners (24 Jan 1868) 19 Feb 1889. Mary was the daughter of Anna Ventiecker and Henry Meiners. Mary was 7 when she and her family came to America from Hannover, Germany. (On her obituary notice in the paper, it said her father was a shoemaker in Bellevue, IA). John was 32 and Mary was 21.

Great-grandfather Herman purchased land from a Mr. Bettendorf on 10 Apr 1869 and from a Mr. Soukup 20 Jan 1870. This farm is south and east of St. Lucas. The farm was deeded to Henry and the girls and then to Henry alone 18 Apr 1879. Herman died 4 years later 3 May 1883. He was 63. Anna lived to be 78 and died 5 Jul 1897. Both Herman and Anna are buried in the St. Lucas cemetery.

Henry deeded the farm to his sons, Joe and Anton 26 Oct 1939 and then to Anton alone 5 Feb 1940. It is now owned by David the son of Anton.

Grandfather John and Grandmother Mary lived on a farm south of St. Lucas. (Today it is owned by Arthur Schmitt). They married in 1889 but records show the farm was purchased from Mr. Korzendorfer much later, 31 May 1902. They had to clear the land for farming as it was almost solid timber from St. Lucas on out. Henry was born 12 Jan 1890 and my father, John was born 17 Oct 1891. Next was Herman on 19 Oct 1893 and then Jacob 11 Oct 1895.

When my father was 7 or 8, grandfather had a stroke and was paralyzed for several months. Unable to speak or help at all, Father Boeding decided Henry should keep on with his schooling and my father should do the chores, etc. He remembers very well pulling out stumps and doing the planting. He was small for his age and was unable to see over the handlebars of the walking plow. Grandfather recovered and afterward talked many times of knowing what went on around him but being unable to help in any way. Mary surely had her hands full.

When my father was 13, his parents decided to send him to the Bother's School in Techny, IL. This is near Chicago. He was sent by train. There he learned the architectural trade.

Other families decided they could buy land much cheaper in Wisconsin. So did my grandfather. He sold his farm to Henry Kuennen 4 Dec 1912 and bought 330 acres in Neillsville, Wl for $10,000.00. This farm is now owned by Jack Counsel. The date of purchase was 9 Jan 1913. In the fall of 1912, Henry and John drove to Neilsville with a team of horses and wagon to ready the farm for production the next year. The trip took 3 days. Henry stayed to do the fall plowing and my father came back to Iowa.

By this time there were 9 living children: twins Agnes and Theresa (31 Dec 1898), Rose (14 Aug 1901), Francis (28 Jan 1905) and Ferdinand (9 May 1909). Two children died in infancy: Anna (16 Jan 1898) died of whooping cough 11 Feb 1898 and Elizabeth (20 Jan 1904), who died of weakness 13 Feb 1904.

In 1913 the whole family and all their belongings moved to Neillsville. The machinery, feed, household goods, etc. were all packed in a railroad car.

My father, John had met my mother, Catherine Schmitt, and they hoped to marry. Grandma Schmitt, however, said Catie is not going to Wisconsin. Grandfather John said he would give my father 40 acres the same as the other children in Wisconsin, but if he stayed in Iowa he was on his own. My father helped them move and put in the crop, but for love of Catie, he came back. Since he had nowhere to stay, Grandma took him in. Naturally, this caused much “talk." It was November and since there could be no weddings in Advent, the date was set for 26 Nov 1913. They were only published twice. More “talk.” They were the last couple to be married in the old church.

Dad got his wedding suit from his folks and grandfather gave my mother $50.00. He said she would use it wisely.

They rented a house in St. Lucas. Dad was apprenticed to Jake Thiel as a carpenter, but soon was on his own. When the new church was being built he went up and applied for work and was hired. He and Fritz Klemmer put up the west steeple all by themselves, and were done before the other crews did the east one. Many barns, homes, sheds, etc. in the area were built by my father. There are few places that he did not build something. For many years he also engineered the construction of numerous buildings for the parish: ie. schools, convent, parish house.

Grandma Schmitt had purchased a farm south of town. Uncle Frank Schmitt was working it, but did not care for the land. So Grandma sold it to my folks 17 Dec 1925. They also had acquired another farm from Herman Hack-man 31 Mar 1919. My brother, Roger, now farms the homeplace.

Dad’s brother, Herman, went in to the service in World War I. When he came back to Wisconsin, he worked at several jobs but did not like any of them. He then went to Springville, NY where he took up the carpenter trade and also married Alice Statz.

All the rest of the family married and lived in Wisconsin. Travel was difficult and expensive in those days, therefore, there was limited contact between the 3 places in Iowa, Wisconsin and New York.

Grandfather John died in May 1942 at age 85 and is buried in Neillsville. Grandmother Mary died 21 Apr 1947 at age 79 and is buried there also.

I only know one story about my grandmother. She had


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