This branch of the Austrian Hesch family is descended from Johann Hesch and his wife Marya (Schlinz) Hesch, who came to America from Oberschlagles, Bohemia with three sons: Paul, Mathias, and Anton. +++Johann & Marya settled in Buffalo County, Wisconsin but moved to Pierz, Mn in about 1885. .+++Mathias settled in Waumandee, Wisconsin and moved to Pierz in 1911. +++Anton never married but farmed with his dad in Agram Township, where he died in 1911.+++And Paul, my great grandfather, settled five miles away, in Buckman, Minnesota. He died there in 1900.

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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

At least one Sand mystery, solved

We heard from a wonderful new relative last night!  She's Magdalena (Sand) Block's great grand daughter Jenny, and she enclosed a few photographs.  Her grandmother was Hildegard Hoheisel and the delightful photos were passed along from her.  However, I believe a little suspense is good for your character, so we'll post them tomorrow or the next day ☺

But first, Solving the Sand Mystery:  remember the "Eight Women" photo we've puzzled over here on HH?  Over time, we figured out who each woman was except for two: the kneeling woman on the left, and the nectar pourer (bottom, with the pitcher). This was 1920, and we think it was probably a Hesch wedding.  In an exchange of emails, Jenny thought that the kneeling woman on the left was most likely Lena Block--dark hair, possibly pregnant, and one of Louisa's four daughters and a daughter-in-law to work that particular occasion. I think she's right.
Click the "Eight Women" link for the names ☺

Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Creamery/Laundry at Chatfield, Minnesota

 Our regular reader knows that I'm a little addicted to paging thru old issues of Technical World Magazine, mostly for the astonishing ideas that were published as tho they were already accepted and in full production.  Dies ist nicht so, as quite a few of those ideas were pipe dreams.
However, check this story of the laundry connected to the creamery in Chatfield, Minnesota in 1914. The basic idea made excellent sense, in that creameries had an "engine, water supply, sewer system and facilities for heating water", and as the clip below mentions, this equipment was needed only in the forenoon for processing cream. Why not use it for something in the afternoon?
The rest of the Minnesota Farmers' Institute Annual article is HERE, complete with comments from Chatfield farm wives on the next few pages.
I wondered about drying the laundry, but the article says they had an extractor (rather than a wringer) and two drying rooms.  Turnover was usually the next day!  According to the pictures online, the laundry was still in operation in 1918, and the latest mention I found was in 1920, when there were 224 families using the service.  Leave a comment if you know more about it, ok?

Monday, March 23, 2015

More from Math ☺

Math Hesch wrote the Buckman News for 68 years...! 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

A special treat!

When I think about "famous" Heschs, there's Wilhelm Hesch, the opera singer back in Vienna, and dad's aunt, Sr Laura...and definitely, dad's Uncle Math Hesch, the newspaper reporter.  We've posted a lot of Math's columns here already, but the latest ones we can access online are from 1924, well before Math got "funny".  His best columns were later, when he knew he had a following; when, as Ferdie Stepan said:
"Our mailman was Leo Virnig...leave Mail at the Post Office in Buckman...The day the Pierz Journal came also came some congestion as a fellow wrote a column every week and the people wanted to have their paper right now. The guy did a good job and it was quite hilarious once in awhile.  Matt Hesch was his name and he had a brother Tony. They were kinda in the Moonshine business.  Matt worked for the Soil Conservation and he did a good job.  I don't think they were ever thought of as non [law] abiding citizens.  They had large families, some nice girls, too".
So, this week, Math's daughter Laura sent a few of his columns from 1953-54 and 1961-71.   (Math was born in 1890.  You can do the "math"...☺)
Here are two--they should be clickable--

I'll post more tomorrow, ok?
Our THANKS to Laura!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Mail Delivery by Snowmobile?

Here are some stunning Post Office vehicle photos Larry found online--probably from the mid-1920s or so. Were they kits provided by the postal service, or were they home-made?  Seems to me they were sharing the "how to", but added improvements as they occurred to the local builder/mechanic.  None of the three pics are of the same vehicle, you can tell, but the second one is parked in front of the U S POST OFFICE PIERZ MINN. I bet the caterpillar-track six-wheeler was used for road-free areas, and skis were swapped out for the front tires after the first snowfall.  I'm constantly in awe at peoples' innovative skills. Wow!

Larry said this last pic was in New England ☺

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The 1892 St Cloud City Directory

1892 Directory

1896-97 Directory including Sauk Rapids and Waite Park

1901 including Sauk Rapids and Waite Park

We here in Minnesota have an invaluable website called Minnesota Reflections, where historic books and newspapers and photographs are posted online.  It's where the Pierz Journal is most available to us, as well as searchable subjects that might pop into your head.  Try it sometime.  The fun is when you start looking for one thing and get into something entirely off track--like the city directories.
In the first few pages, there are lists of amenities the town offers.  There's a statement of how many names they've included, calculating a  "multiple of three, the one in most general use in other cities"--so since there were 2,820 names listed in 1892, they estimated there were really over 8,400 residents.

And just so you can actually answer that Trivial Pursuit question: In 1892, there were 17 churches and 18 "secret societies" in St Cloud, Minnesota.
You're welcome ☺.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

More About the School Problem

(Yes, I flipped this picture to make her
 left-handed ☺ Woohoo).
Here's an excerpt from a book called "They Chose Minnesota: A Survey of the State's Ethnic Groups".  (I've sent for the book but it hasn't arrived yet--this is an excerpt we found online a year or so ago.  I screen capped it because, ok, it's an obsession of mine ☺). I think it skirts the issue, altho this maybe just describes the run-up to Pierz' problems.  Archbishop John Ireland was influential in Minnesota way before he became Arch, and had to do with some of the German/Irish problems mentioned, because there's almost nothing worse than a righteous ethnic Catholic vs. another righteous ethnic Catholic.

"The sizable numbers of German-speaking persons who wanted sermons and schools conducted in their native tongue led to a nationwide controversy during the last quarter of the 19th century. In 1878, Abbot Alexius Edelbrock of St John's Abbey declared the persons "best acquainted with a foreign tongue
should have the advantage of hearing the gospel read, and sermons preached to them, in their own language". Other leaders, most notably Archbishop Ireland of St Paul wanted to "Americanize" the church and thus defend it from what came to be called "Cahenslyism", a plan proposed to Pope Leo XIII in 1891 by Peter Paul Cahensly, which would have organized foreign-born Catholics in the United States into congregations of like nationality served by priests of the same mother tongue. In his Americanization efforts Ireland initiated a takeover by public school boards of parochial schools in Fairbault and Stillwater, perpetrating a dispute that reached all the way to Rome, and persisted for many years in various forms. The archbishop insisted that, while Germans could be taught in parochial schools, English should be spoken in general so that the faith of the children was not restricted to the non-English tongue of their parents.
The fight was also seen as one between liberals and conservatives. In Minnesota it widened the rift between Irish and German Catholics. In Stearns County the opposition to English in churches and parochial schools was stronger in rural areas than it was in St Cloud. In the church schools children were taught half in
German and half in English, usually by sisters of German birth or descent. The readers used were printed in high German, as were such newspapers as Der Nordstern (The North Star) of St Cloud, and Der Wanderer (The Migrant) of
St Paul, which many parents read. The problem was further complicated by....."

NOT by dialects--it had to do with the state wanting schools one way, and the local Catholics wanting it another way.  It's a chapter of our history that's almost never mentioned, or it's glossed over, like in the excerpt.  Sigh.

(Maybe once the book arrives, I'll change this post, huh?  We can make this controversy drag out for another hundert years, mebee! ☺)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Cleaning up the Sands

So, today I got a wild hair to "declutter" around here.  The first project was kitchen related--cupboards with WAY too much stuff in em, in particular the bottom shelf in the corner next to the stove.  Haven't seen what's back there in years.  It would take a flexible kid with a flashlight to spelunk that space.  I figure what I couldn't reach isn't causing any problems, right?  It's fine where it is. A "legacy" someday, even.

Since I still had some energy left, I thought about my genealogy files.  They occupy most of a drawer in the file cabinet, and they're in NO order at all.
When Larry first got me interested, I started printing info as soon as I found it online--"HEY!  This is US--I need a copy of it!"  Not to mention tons of copies from research trips to the Weyerhaeuser in Little Falls or to the History Museum in St Paul. Naturally, EVERYTHING had to be copied...and subsequently, stored.

  And you're right--I haven't looked at/needed that stuff in years, either.  It's all online, but the hard copies simply can't be tossed.  I just can't.  They're too precious.  Sigh. For instance, the first folder contains:
  • a copy of the last will and testament of Mathias Hesch (GGrandpa Paul's brother); 
  • the two SCTimes "local history" issues published on their 150th anniversary as a newspaper; 
  • a 3 page-taped together copy of the marriage license of Peter Sandt and Angelique Stoltz in May, 1848; 
  • a scan of a letter from my daughter-in-law's grandmother about their family; 
  • a bunch of family group sheets (Muellers, Otrembas, Dehlers, Hortschs)
  • Dad's "Farm and Home Management Plan" from--wow, he tried to make the Dropps farm work, in 1939?  I've looked at that file before, but never saw the "G.Dropps farm" designation.  It says "Buckwheat 30 acres, corn 20 acres, hay 60 acres".  As of December 15, 1940, he had 3 work horses, 2 cows, a tractor plow, corn planter, set of harnesses, and a Chevy Coupe....
 Anyway, something else I found and never questioned is a "Descendants of Matthew Sand" list.  (It's in print, so it must be true).  Matthew was born in 1653 in Luxembourg, and married Johanna Crehes, born 1682.  Looks like they're the earliest Sand ancestors we know about, but only 7 generations later, it's screwed up ☺.
There were two kids in that generation named  John Peter was Mike Sand's brother, the other was their cousin, son of Paul Sand and Katherina Didier...and the birth of one is paired with the wife and death of the other.  Argh.  How much energy do I have left?  Nope, not enough.
 New Munich cemetery list, with Paul & Katherina's grave.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

A book about Sr Laura!

WOW!  This week, I heard from Sr Owen Lindblad OSB, that she'd finished the book she was writing about Sr Laura (aka grandpa Anton's older sister, Theresa).  We have lots of posts here on HH about Sr Laura, who died in 1972.  (Scroll down to find her label on the left, or type "Sr Laura" in the search box, above).  You'll find her story from my perspective, but the new book will be her story from the Benedictine angle. It should be different, and cool!
Sr Owen said the manuscript still needs to be approved by the Leadership Team at the monastery, but that she'll let me know about its progress....and of course, I'll post that here.
Oh, and the name of the new book?  "SO FAR, SO GOOD" ☺.  

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Cannons and busses

 Two or three interesting but unrelated news items here:  the first, a Little Falls Herald clipping from 1898 that would have been a result of the Spanish-American war heating up. It's stunning to imagine three flat cars with a huge cannon on each rolling thru Little Falls.  At the time, America was fighting with the Spanish off both coasts (or thought we were).  With over 4,000 miles of coasts and a number of large cities there, big guns were made and expedited. The closest photo I could find online was this one from a collectors website.  It looks like it could be 28 feet long, I suppose.  It's definitely still impressive over 100 years later.

From a Facebook page called "St Cloud Remembered" comes this 1928 photo of the bus you could take to and from the cities.  It's parked in front of the Breen Hotel, later the Germain Hotel.  The businesses we'd remember from that corner were a Fanny Farmer candy shop, and an optician around the corner.  Q: What cafe was right across the street in the building hidden by the back of the bus?