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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Thursday, April 28, 2011

So, where WAS the cemetery?

In Bohemia in the early 1800s, each village had a small chapel.  Here, baptisms, weddings and funerals took place.  The priest lived in the nearby market town where the church was, but he must have made rounds pretty regularly since baptisms seemed to happen within 24 hours of a birth. 
Funerals could take a couple days, and maybe the procession 
was an important part of mourning, since they had a distance to go...
"Our" part of Bohemia (now Czech Republic) and the villages that were
important to generations of Heschs.
We know that Johann and Marya had a son who died of scarlet fever as a 2 year old (Bartholomaeus), and who was buried, according to the church book of Deaths, in the cemetery in Oberbaumgarten (see the red marker, above).

Last week, our friend Heinz Binder offered to find more of the Hesch houses we've identified, but since they were only temporary homes, I asked him instead to find the old German Catholic cemetery.  
He emailed to say he'd be in Neuhaus on Freitag and would return via Oberbaumgarten.  He sent the coordinates of the cemetery:
49.11 N, 15.04 E
and here it is, with its own chapel, see?
I suspect that farmers didn't have extra money for headstones, but I'll be grateful for photos of the cemetery itself, just to see it.
There could be generations of Hesch graves there
...pretty hallowed ground,
way on the other side of the globe.


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