52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Courting

Henry C. Jaeger & Lillie Neumann's Wedding My grandparents, Henry and Lillie, were married on September 18, 1929, one day after Grandpa’s 19th birthday. Granny was 16. They were married, in Shelby, Texas at the home of Granny’s father and step-mother, Theodore and Selma. Because Granny spoke only German, Pastor Henry Brunotte of Martin Luther …

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Maps

I've been interested in learning about the origins of the family cemetery as long as I can remember. As a child, I used to walk along the graves in the historic Witte section and wonder about the lives of those buried in the ground. When the Jaeger Witte Heritage Cemetery Association was still in its …

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: In the Kitchen

Elsie Teufel (née Jaeger) was Grandpa Henry's older sister. She married Henry Teufel in 1914 and lived in Balaton, Minnesota, which was Henry's hometown. After deciding that it was too cold to stay, the couple and their son Earl moved to Port Arthur, Texas, where Henry took a job working in the Gulf Refinery with …

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Stormy Weather

Stormy Weather From 1949 until 1957, severely deficient rainfall plunged Texas into a devastating water shortage. Wells and reservoir dried up, crops withered, and thirsty cattle bawled in the scorching heat.  The number of farms and ranches shrank from 345,000 to 247,000 and the rural population declined to just one fourth of the state population …

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Preservation

Preservation "Show me your cemeteries, and I will tell you what kind of people you have." Benjamin Franklin. There's an estimated 50,000 cemeteries in Texas, ranging from the 419 acre Houston National Cemetery to those located on family farms and measured in square footage. While large cemeteries are governed by paid directors who monitor all levels of operation, the smaller …

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: In the City

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: In the City Throughout our nation's history, families living on small, diversified farms struggled to make ends meet. Farming was labor intensive work and one bad season could ruin the entire operation. Many households, therefore, supplemented their income through working outside of the farm. In extreme instances, the land was …

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