Showing posts with label Behrndts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Behrndts. Show all posts

Friday, September 2, 2011

Four sisters as little girls Sepia Saturday 90

We have just returned home while I read that Alan, our SS host,  is off for sunny Spain, an example of how we are all at different spaces  and yet united  by sharing our old photographs here on Sepia.  I have missed this the past weeks and did not get to  view as many as I planned, but then life often changes or plans for blogging. I will go with Alan's suggestion of little girls and offer a photo of Jerry's aunts, taken before 1917.

We know this  because his mother who was born in January 1917 is not in the photo with her sisters.  From the ages of the aunts in the photo and the years of their birth,  I suppose this may have been taken about 1915 or 1916.  Bernice was born in 1912 and she appears to be about 3 years old, while  Marie, who was born in 1910 could be about 5.  Aunt Marie gave us this photo many years ago because she was tossing stuff out and I was there helping her with paperwork, so I rescued it from the waste basket.  She laughed and said, "oh that old thing"  Well it is that, but scanned and shared it has lots of Sepia memories. 
Starting to the left, the eldest girl sporting the black or dark colored bow, Aunt Myrtle, standing Aunt Bernice, To the right Aunt Ruth and at the bottom Aunt Marie.  All are gone on now and all except Aunt Ruth lived into their 90's.  Bernice was the red head in the family and was a no nonsense person all her life, she appears ready to go standing there behind the sisters. 
4 Behrndt sisters
Their mother, Esther, mailed this photo post card to their paternal grandmother in Hokah for a penny.  Hokah is a distance of only 8 to 10 miles from where they lived and farmed in  the Pine Creek area of La Crescent but in  travel limited to horse and buggy, there were not many visits.  Notice the penny postage stamp and the LaCrosse meter stamp.  La Crosse is across the Mississippi river, farther than Hokah but it had the post office.

Esther apologizes saying, "not very good" and inquires about other photos that she had taken when they visited in Hokah.  Yet considering where it has been and what it has  heard in its 96 years, it is quite a family treasure.  Jerry likes this because it has his grandmother's writing, in pencil no less.  Another amazing survival.

I wonder what will remain 90+ years from now of our writings?  Will the cyber world preserve us or will we fade, muter than a 96 year old pencil written card? 

This is my Sepia Saturday post.  Click on the title above to go tot he Sepia host site and link into other's  sharings for the week.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Meet Milton Sepia Saturday 63 (Click here to Access Sepia Site)

I amused myself for several hours researching this photo and Milton this darling small boy from  Jerry's side. Milton has been a  mystery for awhile among photos from Jerry's mother, who as I mentioned before collected things from everyone.  I thought it a neat pose, reminiscent of the RCA Victor Label.  A little  guy with a dog, how precious.  The handwriting on the bottom is from Aunt Marie and merely identifies him as a cousin.  The last name Steager was unfamiliar but all the genealogy research and plugging I've done led me along to solve this mystery.  .

Here is the back side, another post card,  mailed in 1910 to Jerry's Grandmother, signed by Clara.  It must have been quite common in the late 1800's and early 1900's to have postcard photos taken.  Perhaps there were itinerant photographers who produced these at a reasonable fee; this is something I intend to research as I have become quite curious about why so many had photos on postcards.

Clara Behrndt Steger
About 1931
The last name Steager meant nothing and the name Milton was not ringing a bell, but as there is already quite an extensive ancestral tree on the Behrndts on my pages, I looked for a Clara, who turns out to be another of Charlie Behrndt's sisters.  Aha, sure enough, Clara Behrndt, a grand aunt about whom we know little,  married Michael Steiger and they moved to Minneapolis. That is about 125 miles from the home area and in those days that distance wasn't easily traveled, so she likely was not a frequent visitor to home.   Michael was a laborer and farmer and at one point left the wife and kids to work on a farm in South Dakota.  Notice the spelling of that last name, it changed several times over the years....
The Steigers became Steager and then in the 1910 census the spelling changed to Steger which the entire family adopted and used, except for Michael who would end up with the spelling Stegar!  Whew, name changes were not confined to my Polish relatives; even the pioneer settler families experienced the same phenomena, to say nothing of those living in the "big cities" such as Minneapolis at the time! 

Milton was the third son of Michael and Clara , born in 1909 so the above would be a photo of him at one year.  There were two other boys, Ellis and Russell and a daughter, Lucille.  All are deceased and it appears that none married and left no survivors. Milton died in 1989. 

The 1920 census gave strange information as Ellis  is identified there as a daughter!  Think of it,  in 1920 he's  either the first in the family to have a sex change operation or the census worker really messed up!   Because this is the only time Ellis has been identified as female, we think it was another census mistake.  I did not notice this error  until I  began researching Milton; then I noticed two Ellis in the family a boy and a girl born the same time.  Wait a minute, no one would name twins the same!   So that error is now cleaned up on the tree. 

By 1930 something happened  to Michael who was no longer in the household.  We laugh that perhaps Clara learned Michael had reported a son as a daughter so she tossed him out on his ear!  (You see how one can speculate when we don't know the details!  An active imagination is so much fun!)  The 1930 census shows Clara as head of the household  and now a home worker; all four children ages  24 through 18 remain living with her.  Milton, "her rascal" has become a machinist, Ellis a laborer, and Russell an assembler in the iron works, while Lucille is a seamstress and dressmaker.  After more probing, I found Michael now spelling his last name Stegar, living  about two blocks away from the family in a boarding home and working as a paper hanger.  

This is my Sepia for this week, to see other interesting posts in this international community click on the title to this post to go to the host site.