Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Recently my daughter Kristin and I have been working on genealogy for our family. There is something so compelling to find the stories of family ancestors before us. Above are pictures of Lonnie's great grandparents on his father's side. The top picture is Johann and Phillipina Jahnke, and the bottom is Johann and Albertina Leitow. I wish we had a lot more information about their story of coming to America, and then to Nebraska. Both families were homesteaders in our county, and they were some of the early settlers in this area. We still farm the Leitow family farm ground. When I am walking around the land, and the homestead place where the Leitow's began their American story, I feel a wonderful connection to them. I think about the fact that, at some point, they may have stood at the exact same spot that I am on. That they too enjoyed the beautiful sunrises, and sunsets around their land.
Kristin is like a detective, uncovering facts, and maps, and bits and pieces to puzzles. We were extremely lucky to locate a box of very old photos with generations of pictures. What a wonderful find. Luckily most of the photos were labeled with names. Some of those photos tell their own the story of the Great Great Uncle that we thought had never married. He actually was married to a "mail order bride". We have their wedding picture. Sadly , the union did not work out, and she left him. Amazingly enough, Lonnie remembered a story about that uncle that his Dad used to tell him.
While I have been truly enjoying all the fun stories, photo's and facts about these people, most of my enjoyment comes from spending time and sharing a common interest with my daughter Kristin. We will continue searching and hopefully finding stories. We recently spent some time at the local library using I think we were both overwhelmed by all the information available, but anxious to check it out again..soon.


  1. Such a good adventure for you and Kristin to be on together.

  2. I think we must be related! Johann and Albertina were my great, great grandparents. I'd love to hear more about your research!


  3. kikimonkey...Wow, that would be amazing. You need to let me know who your parents, grandparents were because I can track the geneaology then.

  4. Krystal-Are you related to Kevin Becker, he used to live in West Point NE. My husband knows him.

  5. Berny,

    I can send you the genealogy information that I have regarding the Vandenberg / Schlickbernd side of the family.