Visitors & Queries by Karen Hansen


What fun it is to get visitors and to correspond with people from near and far! From Minnesota, Canada, South Dakota, Florida, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Iowa, people who visited our genealogy room this summer have been the following

Ernest Springer of Burnsville, MN is researching the SCHWIESOW family in Shelby County. We were lucky to find the family in Fairview Township in the 1880 Census, because the name was badly misspelled

Bill and Marlene Nels of Mirror, Alberta, Canada are looking for information on the GASSNICK family.

Julie Hawks of Aurora, SD is seeking facts on David McFADDEN, who is buried in the Walnut Catholic Cemetery

Janet and Fred Michela of Melbourne Beach, FL are researching PEDERSON, KEVAN or KEEVAN. V. Jean Gratigny of Naperville, IL is also interested in the KEVAN or KEEVAN name.

Christine Kastell of Davenport, IA and Mary Lou Johansen of Iowa City, IA are researching the FOOTE and KRINGEL families.

We have had multiple correspondences with William Rasmussen of Los Angeles, CA and have also assisted Wilma Bobenhouse of Florence, AZ and have looked for information for Mike Quandt of Johnston, IA.

William Rasmussen is seeking considerable information to finish his family history on Juergen and Margaret THIESSEN and Ferdinand and Emma RASMUSSEN, their businesses, the St. Rose Hotel, White House Café, Sylvia Café and a saloon and their locations. The hotel is the only one that we had definitely located. We have sent the requested photos of the homes where his family lived in Walnut. He would very much like to find a photo of downtown Walnut from the late 30’s or early 40’s and a school photo of his elementary class from the early 40’s. Does anyone have one that we could copy? He would also like a photo of the home of Ferdinand and Emma Rasmussen in the 1950’s, next to the railroad tracks, south of the depot in Avoca. We received Thiessen family records from the Peace United Church in Walnut. Ferdinand Rasmussen’s birth and baptism records were located and obtained from the Fehmarn Island website. We have sent various census records, newspaper articles and land records and are continuing our search.

Wilma Bobenhouse asked that we take photos of the STUTZMAN, SWINGLE and DERMYER tombstones at the Lincoln Township Cemetery. We e-mailed photos to her and mailed a tombstone rubbing, obituaries, a marriage article and one listing the gifts, a golden wedding article, an accident article, a death index record and a cemetery listing. She is sending a copy of her family history for our collection.

We are waiting to hear back from Mike Quandt, who was interested in Etta Maude COATS, born April 3, 1882 to William and Augusta Coats. As an infant, she was taken into the home of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Gordon, who soon after moved to Grand Island, NE. We found census records, five Coats obituaries and the birth article from the May 5, 1882 Walnut paper, stating that “a couple of girls” arrived Monday at W. H. Coats’ home.