On this date, in 1797, my third great grandfather, Charles Francois Xavier Voiland, was born in Essert, Belfort, France. He was a farmer. In October of 1857, at the age of 60, he emigrated to America with his wife, Adelaide, and daughters, Madelaine, Catherine Philomen, Julie and Adele.
More about the Voiland/Weller family can be found here.
Today is my grandpa’s 26th birthday! I know, that sounds odd, considering he was born in 1908! My maternal grandfather, Raymond Christian Hau, was born on February 29th, 1908. So, if he were still with us today, he would be celebrating his February 29th birthday for only the 26th time.
I have a newspaper article from 1996, when his hometown newspaper, the Fond du Lac Reporter, did a story on his 22nd Leap Year birthday. The subhead of the article reads, “He looks older than most 22 year olds”.
My Grandpa Hau had a great sense of humor, and he always enjoyed the uniqueness of his special day!
An aspect of researching my family history that really interests me is the occupations of my ancestors. A common occupation that crops up again and again is working in various types of mills.
My Harris family has a long history in the mills. Ezekial Harris owned a saw mill in Bedford, NY in the the mid 1700′s. Nelson Harris built a saw mill in Cato, WI and then in Forest Junction, WI in the 1850′s. It was Forest Junction’s first business and was later operated by his brother, Isaac. Nelson’s son, Orville, worked in the Cato mill and later was an engineer in at a flour mill in Appleton, WI.
Walter Kachelski came to America in 1870, and during his early years, was employed as a weaver in a woolen mill in Beaver Dam, WI
Reuben Perry Benjamin operated a saw mill in Pierpont, Ohio in the mid 1800′s
In 1897, Daniel Webster Allen build the first grist mill in Custer, MI.
In the mid-1800′s, Lysander Ormsby operated a stave mill in Deerfield, MI. Stave mills produced the narrow strips of wood that composed the sides of barrels.