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 15, 2013

Who was John Heach?

This afternoon, Larry showed me a GREAT customized search engine he came up with to find key words on Minnesota Reflections.  He suggested I try a name--any name--from those we've researched.  I tried Otremba, and found gobs of hits, of course. One, the July 31, 1913 issue, 
had this startling headline:

Wow, could it be a misprint?  Did they mean grandpa's brother John...or the John Hesch in Agram township?  I'd never heard of a family named Heach around Morrison county, but what do I know?  
As we read the entire column, written in first person, we were still unsure if this was a relative. What he described wasn't familiar, but then.... He was supposed to have lived around Pierz for 25 years and was "well known". Hmm, did we need to do lots more research?  

The next autobiographical installment was the next week, August 7, 1913.  The headline was the same, mid front page at the top.  This John was erudite, and descriptive.  He'd evidently traveled a lot, around the world even.  WHO was he?

It's worth it to go to Minnesota Reflections online and search the word HEACH.    After those first two columns, the name is mentioned here and there, and finally there's an small announcement in 1915, of his death, with a tribute printed the following week.  We're pretty sure he wasn't one of us, that it wasn't a mis-print...see what you think.

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