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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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Here are two towns that figure in Hesch history--Royalton (left) and Vawter (right), both from 1920.  Royalton was important because it was the railhead for produce going northwest or south, like to Fargo or St Paul/Minneapolis.  Royalton was also the second largest town in Morrison county after Little Falls, and you could get there without much in the way of hills for the horses to climb--which wasn't true for Little Falls.  Besides, Royalton had feed mills and grain storage right there by the tracks.  And probably, Little Falls was just too BIG. 
Vawter, on the other hand, was built only because of the Soo line tracks were there.  WHERE was Vawter, you ask?  If you're traveling to Little Falls from Royalton on Hiway 10, there's a turn to the right and a sign that says "Buckman...11 miles".  Take that, and you'll pass the left hand turn-off to what was once the village of Vawter.  The town pretty much died once the train no longer stopped there. 

Another interesting factoid about Vawter is that our friend John Schmolke supposedly named it: 
"The town of Vawter was founded in 1908 in northern Bellevue Township. The Minneapolis and Saulte Ste. Marie Railroad (Soo Line) had the town platted as it put in lines from Duluth to western Minnesota. The Soo Line apparently ran through John Schmolke’s property and he supposedly gave the town its name by commenting that there was “vater” everywhere. The truth of this legend is unknown, but the town grew to include a grain elevator, several stores, the Vawter Community Church, and a school. A postal drop was established in the community in 1922. Farmers near the town used Vawter to ship their goods via the railroad to markets in Duluth. By the 1940s, this shipping service and the post office were discontinued and the town disappeared".

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