Wednesday, March 7, 2018
My Family Part1
I am following my sister-in-law Mary's idea of a little family history. I cannot write everything and that is the purpose of this blog. However this will give an overview.
My paternal grandfather was named George Melvan. He was of German descent born in 1880. From what I understand in his youth he was a bit of a wanderer. He even worked for a time in Montana as a cowboy. I know he had a sister and perhaps a brother. I know little about him.
I do know that when he returned to Nebraska he met Minnie. Minnie was the first child born in the United States to her parents. They were from Denmark. She had brothers Nels, Luther, and Christian. Her sister was Christina who was known as Steenie. There may have been others but again I know little about her family.
After they married Grandpa went to work as a brakeman for the railroad. Grandma stayed home as was the norm. Then came the family. Rolan was first. I am not certain of the exact order of some of the reast. There was a stillborn child. Walter lived only 9 months. Willis, George Melvan, J. Earl, Gerald, Berniece, and Ruby Garnet. Then came 2 change of life babies. My father Melvan Louis was first and then Norman. Melvan was my father.
My maternal grandfather was Howard Landerking. Is that the coolest middle name you ever heard? He was of mostly German descent. He had 3 brothers. Leonard died and was buried in France during WWI then a year later he was reburied in Nebraska. Homer raised his family in Montana. Howard and Harold lived in Nebraska. There is a sister whose name I do not know who also lived in Montana.
Grandpa was a real-life cowboy. He rode the range with the cattle and other cowboys. They only went to town for supplies when needed and it was at least a three day ride by hoese. They slept in the open when they went to town or sometimes would stop at an Indian village where they were made welcome.
When he moved back to Nebraska he met and married Anna Maria. She is of Austrian, Moravian, and Bohemian descent. She had a sister Helen and a brother Victor.
Grandma's mother died when she was young. She was relegated to taking care of the house and cooking while her sister worked the farm with their father. She was not a fancy cook but was the best cook ever. She made homemade bread every day.
Grandma's father is the only great-grandparent I knew. His father died when he was a baby. His mother was burned a few months later when a lantern exploded. He and a slightly older brother were sent to America to raised by an uncle. There were at least 2 other brothers but the family lost touch with them.
Great-grandpa's name was Victor. When I was little I thought he was a leprechaun. He was a big man with a huge chest but for some reason he looked small to me. He was bald on top with a fringe of hair aroind the sides and back of his head. His voice was rather high pitched and he spoke with an accent. To me that meant leprechaun.
Grandma and Grandpa's children were Frances, Florence, Evelyn, Louella, Raymond, Donald, Michael, and twins Keith and Carol. There were also 2 baies who were stillborn. Evelyn was my mother.
to be continued......