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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Monday, December 3, 2012

I might have been wrong about Sr Laura

This morning, Larry showed me an online document--a copy of the Bednar Family History (a PDF download) compiled by Karen Fussy and printed in November, 1977.  That family links to ours thru the Otrembas initally, and marriages to the Sand and Meyer families later.  
What does this have to do with S Laura?  Well, there's a story included that I'd heard before but didn't remember where or when, about the Anton & Catherine Otremba family arriving in Rich Prairie (Pierz) in the fall.  They lived in a dugout that first winter, but built a log cabin the following spring and summer.  "They lived peacefully amongst the Chippewa Indians whose village was 200 feet from their first home. When Mrs Otremba gave birth to her last child, Margaret, the Indian women brought gifts of dresses and moccasins for her." (WPA bio)

What Larry pointed out was that Anton & Catherine Otremba evidently had a cordial relationship with their Chippewa neighbors, and most likely the Indian and Otremba kids followed suit, like any neighbors do.
When Mary, their eldest, married Paul Hesch, that feeling and those stories  would have been passed along to the Hesch kids, especially the first few, namely Rose, John, Frank and Theresa (Sr Laura). 

I've doubted St Laura's motivation and understanding of the Ojibwe (Chippewa) for years in my head, and here on HH, too. But Theresa Hesch might have inherited her religious zeal from her grandfather and started with a basic friendliness and understanding of the Ojibwe because of her mom.  And, since Theresa was already 20 when her grandmother Catherine died, she probably heard cool stories directly, too.

1 comment:

  1. She was such a celebrity to me as a child, and had the great respect of the nuns who taught us. Yeah, she was not gentle in her words about her flock, telling stories of loading them up to go to church, for instance, but it was such a mystery how she could take such a risk with her life. I think for her time she rocked. K