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, January 22, 2013

New Pierz

It's really fun when a pic like this from one of the atlases coincides with a news item(s) we found in the Pierz Journal.  This particular instance needs a little background, tho:  Originally there was a town named Rich Prairie, which eventually became Pierz in honor of Fr Pierz, the priest.  

The towns' people evidently differentiated the north end (Upper Town) from the south end (Lower Town).  When the Soo Line railroad came thru south of town, they called the depot area "New Pierz", which, by 1910, became Genola.
We also know that John Schmolke built a store across from the depot...or was it Frank Otremba...or Peter Mueller?  

The mystery I found that got us started on Genola was a blurb in the PJ about broken windows in the new building.  After that, every mention of Genola businesses seemed like the SAME building. We still don't know, but it looks like we only have six buildings to choose from in the pic (and no, the business district never grew much beyond this.  The depot photo was directly across the road from these few stores. just so ya know ☺).


  1. Question for you, when were the Pictorial Atlas of Morrison County, Minnesota published? Some of my grandma's pictures had those little strips of paper on them like these do and some had stickers on the back that had my grandma's address on them. I seem to remember my mom saying grandma had lent them to something & now I'm wondering if this is what it is?

    I know I have the postcard picture of "New Pierz" (Genola) and I think my parents have a print of the station that you have here. (I might be thinking of Lengby where my dad's family is from, it could be another postcard picture.) My daughter's sleeping in our bedroom or I'd go dig out my grandma's pictures now to find them! lol

  2. Hi, Carrie! The three atlases I borrowed are from 1970, 1978 and 1987. They belonged to John Zenner, BTW. Each photo is tiny in the book--you can hardly read the teeny words under the pics, but when they're scanned and enlarged they're AMAZING.
    There might have been other years' issued, I don't know--but there were very few Janson pictures (altho one was the wedding pic of Alfred and Eva from 1945: ☺)
    The 3 atlases I have reprinted a selection of the "historic" photos from 1970 in the '78 and '87 ones,but then they added old pics to each township in the later two books. Maybe they did other years and your grandma contributed to those?

  3. Of course I forgot to look at the photos & now my husband's sleeping in the bedroom. I'll have to ask my mom next time I talk to her if she knows what it was grandma lent them to.