Neuzil, Jan and Katerina (Jaros)

(Rebecca Neuzil)

Jan and Katerina (Jaros) Neuzil and their 5 children, an industrious, hard-working rural family, came to America in 1874. They were a family with deep religious faith in God and the courage to seek a new country to live in without governmental turmoil. In Feb 1875 they purchased land 31/2 miles southwest of Spillville, IA in Sumner Twp., Section 26 and farmed there until they retired. Jan was born about 1822 at Lhota u Bechyne, Bohemia and died 24 May 1899 at age 77. Katerina was born 9 Feb 1826 at Hvozdanech u Bechyne, Bohemia and died 8 Mar 1918 at age 92. They are both buried in the St. Wenceslaus Cemetery in Spillville and a large iron cross monument marks their graves.

Jan and Katerina's children, Marie, John, Frank, Charles and Katerina were all born at Bechyne, Kraj Tabor, Bohemia (now the Czech Republic). In 1913 Father Procopius Neuzil (Charles) celebrated his silver jubilee of priesthood and was given permission to say mass at his mother’s home because her health prevented her from attending the celebration in church.

Bio Photo

Children of Jan and Katerina Neuzil.

Back, left to right: John Joseph Neuzil, Frank Neuzil. Front, left to right: Marie Pavlina Neuzil, Rt. Rev. Procopius Neuzil and Sister Mary Ludmila Neuzil.

Marie Pavlina “Mary" (b. 8 Sep 1852) was 22 years old when her family came to America. She never married and lived for some time with her parents, walking over 4 miles to attend daily mass when weather permitted. Later she became a cook at the Sacred Fleart Convent at Lisle, IL and remained there until she died 30 Dec 1928. She is buried in the convent cemetery “St. Scholastia’s Cemetery.” Marie was 76 years old when she passed away. John Joseph (b. 1855) was 19 years old when he came to America. He was a mason and had learned the trade in Europe. John married Mary Koutek of St. Paul, MN. John and Mary made their home near Ft. Atkinson and had 10 children. John died 22 Mar 1938 at age 83 and is buried at St. John’s Cemetery in Ft. Atkinson. Frank (b. 24 Dec 1858) was 16 years old when he arrived in America. Frank was a farmer and took over the farm his father Jan had bought in 1875. He married Sophia Frana at the St. Wenceslaus Church 17 Apr 1888. They became parents of 5 children. Frank died 26 Aug 1951 at age 92 and is buried in an unmarked grave in the St. Wenceslaus Cemetery in Spillville next to his wife. Sophia was born 4 Apr 1870 and died 10 Dec 1907 at age 37. A large iron cross monument marks her grave with the inscription in Czech spelling her name Zofie Neuzilova. Charles fb. 3 Nov 1861) came to America at age 13. (See Neuzil, The Rt. Rev. Procopius story). Katherine fb. 25 Dec 1866) came to America at age 8. Katherine entered St. Scholastica Convent in Chicago 28 Dec 1885 at age 19. She became Sister Mary Ludmila and joined with Mother Nepomucene Jaeger to found the Sacred Heart Convent in 1895. She became Superior of St. Joseph Orphanage in 1904 and retained that position until 1913. After some years of teaching in the elementary school Sister was brought to the convent because of her health. She held several positions and did light work. Sister Mary Ludmila Neuzil O.S.B. died 1 Jun 1952 at age 85 and is buried in the convent cemetery “St. Scholastica’s Cemetery.”

Neuzil, John Frank and Eleanora (Novak)

(Rebecca Neuzil)

John Frank Neuzil, son of Frank and Sophia (Frana) Neuzil, was born 6 Sep 1896 on his parent’s farm located 3 1/2 miles southwest of Spillville, IA in Sumner Twp., Winneshiek Co. He lived on the same farm all his life, acquiring it from his father in 1921. John’s parents were Frank and Sophia (Frana) Neuzil. John had a brother Frank who died in infancy and 3 sisters: Anna (Sister Justina); Mary (m. Joseph Riha); and Ludmila (m. Edward A. Novak).

On 26 Apr 1921, in a triple wedding held at Holy Trinity Church in Protivin, John married Eleanora Mary Novak, daughter of Anton and Anna (Pecinvovsky) Novak. Eleanora was born 5 Sep 1899. Her brothers and sisters were: Joseph (m. Celia Frana); Agnes (m. John Korbel); Edward (m. Ludmila Neuzil); Lewis (m. Annie Frana); and Christina (m. Lewis Malek).

John and Eleanora spent their early married life farming. When their sons were old enough to farm John, who was a very outgoing person and strong on socializing, became a community committee man in AAA (Agriculture Adjudging Association). He was already on the county school board, a Grand Knight in the Knights of Columbus and active in Farm Bureau. He went on membership drives, was a township committeeman, served 3 years on the board of directors and was a special insurance agent about 5 years. John also sold hail insurance, seed corn and seed oats. John died 15 Nov 1951 at the New Hampton hospital from blood poisoning, a result of complications after surgery on a bleeding ulcer.

Eleanora was a woman of few demands and rather reserved. She kept busy with 7 children, housework and cooking. She always had plenty of food prepared and no company left without being served a hearty lunch. Eleanora enjoyed gardening up to her 80th birthday, using a hoe in her later years as she had difficulty walking because of her hips. She raised many potatoes and her


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