Happy 26th Birthday, Grandpa!

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”.

Celebrating his birthday in 1996

My Grandpa Hau had a great sense of humor, and he always enjoyed the uniqueness of his special day!

Today’s Tidbit | August 25, 1874 – John Hau

On this day, 136 years ago, my great grandfather, John Hau, was born in St. Joe, Marshfield Twp., Fond du Lac Co., Wisconsin. He was the son of Wilhelm and Kathrine (Tuepper) Hau. He married Elizabeth Fuhrman on June 12, 1900.

John ran the Cozy Tavern at 102 North Main St. in Fond du Lac, but after prohibition began, he when into the restaurant business. In 1919, he founded the H & H Cafeteria, with Edward Halverson, at 105 S. Main Street. The restaurant moved to the former Commercial Bank Building, located at First and Main, which they purchased in 1923. In its first year of operation, the cafeteria employed seven persons, but over the years it expanded to employ 21. He bought out Halverson and renamed the restaurant the Lion Cafeteria.

Following 50 years in the business, John retired in 1959, selling the business to his sons Clarence and Raymond (my grandfather).

Much more about John Hau and the Lion Cafeteria can be found here.

John Hau - early 1900's

 

John and Elizabeth (Fuhrman) Hau | 50th Wedding Anniversary - June 12, 1950

Tuesday Treasure | March 16, 2010

When my Grandpa and Grandpa Hau passed away several years ago, I was lucky enough to receive many of their things. Among them was my grandpa’s high school yearbook. Raymond Christian Hau was raised in Fond du lac, WI. His father, John, was in the restaurant business, a business that Ray would eventually join. Ray graduated from Fond du Lac Senior High School in 1926.

The 1920’s in America was an era distinguished by several inventions and discoveries of far-reaching importance, unprecedented industrial growth, accelerated consumer demand and aspirations, and significant changes in lifestyle. The city of Fond du Lac was no exception. It was a classic American mid-western small town, highlighted by its bustling main street. After his graduation, Ray attended Lawrence college in Appleton, his being the first generation of the Hau family to attend college.

Yearbooks from this era are far different from the color photo laden, current events filled books of today. They contain pages full of  poetry and song; pages detailing highlights of the freshman, sophomore, junior and senior classes; and in-depth descriptions of the accomplishments of the Service Club, Glee Club, Commercial Club, Peptimist Club, etc. The class motto for the Senior Class of 1926 was “Character is All!”

The class president described their senior year as follows: “…it was our senior year that we must look to appreciate truly our high school life. The hopes of years were at last realized. Early in November the school addition, containing the new combined gymnasium and auditorium, was finally completed. What senior has not experience a sincere thrill of pride and of satisfaction as he has entered the gymnasium for programs, pep meetings, parties, and basketball games? We are equally proud of our cafeteria where we have enjoyed hot dinners on cold winter days and appetizing lunches after organization parties. Our school life has been further rounded by the new courses of home economics, manual training, auto mechanics, and physical education….”

It’s hard to imagine our ancestors as high school kids. My only memory of my grandpa is as…a grandpa. I’m grateful to have these treasures. They really help me to know him better.

Tuesday Treasure | February 9, 2010

My treasure for today comes in the form of an article that appeared in the June 1976 issue of The Real Estate News Observer. The focus of the article was inflation, and the example they used was the 1938 menu from my great grandfather John Hau’s cafeteria style restaurant, The Lion Cafe. The restaurant, located in Fond du Lac, WI, was described in the article as “the leading restaurant in a town of 23,000″. They went on to publish the entire menu!

The Lion Cafe was owned by the Hau family from it’s founding in 1919 until it closed in 1968. Much more can be read about it’s history here.

1938 Lion Cafe menu - Click to Enlarge

Tuesday Treasure | November 17, 2009

This is the marriage certificate of my grandparents on my mom’s side, Raymond Christian Hau and Florence Rose Heller.

Marriage Certificate of Raymond Christian Hau and Florence Rose Heller

My grandpa was born in Fond du Lac, WI on February 29, 1908. He spent a year at Lawrence College in Appleton. Ray eventually went to work for his father, who owned the Lion Cafeteria, in Fond du Lac.

My grandma was born and raised in Montello, WI. She graduated from St. Agnes School of Nursing in Fond du Lac and then worked, until their marriage, at St. Agnes Hospital.

Ray and Florence were married, on October 10, 1933, at St. John the Baptist Church in Montello. Their marriage was witnessed by Ray’s sister, Delores, and Florence’s brother, Howard.

Surname Saturday | FUHRMANN, FUHRMAN

My 2nd great grandfather on my mom’s side, Anton Fuhrmann, came to America from Germany in about 1845. Anton and his wife, Maria Katherine Michels settled in Marshfield Twp., Fond du Lac Co., WI, where they farmed. They had ten children together. Their oldest daughter, Elizabeth, married John Hau in 1900.

Surname Saturday | HELLER

My grandmother on my mom’s side is a Heller. Passenger list records show that Lorenz, his wife Elizabeth (Fleming), and their children Anna, Andreas and Rosalia arrived at Castle Garden in New York City on May 16, 1866, on the ship Johanna. They were from Sossnow, Prussia. They lived in Neshkoro, Marquette Co., WI in 1870 and by 1880 had moved on to Princeton, Green Lake Co. In 1881, they moved to South Dakota. My direct line stayed in Wisconsin.

My great grandfather, Frank worked on farms at Fox Lake and in the lumber camps at Ashland.  After several years, he came to Montello and worked for the Montello Granite Company for about 45 years. His daughter, Florence married Raymond Hau in 1933.

This Week’s Family Anniversaries | August 9 – August 15, 2009

William Salisbury, Jr. – Born August 14, 1659 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts Bay Colony. He married Anna Cole on July 30th 1664 in Swansea, Bristol, Massachusetts Bay Colony. William is my 7th great grandfather.

Joseph Benjamin, III – Born August 15, 1699 in Preston, New London, Connecticut Colony. He married Deborah Clark on April 3, 1722 in Preston. Joseph is my 6th great grandfather.

Richard Ormsby and Sarah Upham – Married August 9, 1640 in Saco, York Co., Province of Maine. They are my 8th great grandparents.

William Bradford, III and Alice Carpenter – Married August 14, 1623 in Plymouth Colony. William was the second governor of the Plymouth Colony almost continuously from 1621 until 1656. William and Alice are my 9th great grandparents.

Mary “Polly” Bromley – Died August 10, 1845. She married Asa Benjamin on January 4, 1787 in Worthington, Hampshire Co., MA. Mary is buried in the Hall Rd. Cemetery in Pierpont, Ashtabula Co., OH. She is my 4th great grandmother.

Wilhelm Hau – Died August 12, 1884 in St. Joe, Marshfield Twp., Fond du Lac Co., WI. He came to America from Prussia in the 1860’s and married Kathrine Tuepper on January 12, 1869 in Mt. Calvery, Fond du Lac Co. He is buried in St. Joseph’s Cemetery, Marshfield Twp. Wilhelm is my 2nd great grandfather.

Dorothy Louise Harris – Died August 13, 1972 in Clintonville, Waupaca Co., WI. She was born on July 17, 1900 in Appleton, Outagamie Co. Dorothy married Russell Bernard Weller in 1929. She is buried in St. Rose Cemetery in Clintonville. Dorothy is my grandmother.

Maria Katherine Michels – Died on August 14, 1923 in Johnsburg, Fond du Lac Co., WI. She was born in Germany and married Anton Fuhrmann on June 19, 1860 in Johnsburg. She is buried in St. John the Baptist Cemetery in Johnsburg. Maria is my 2nd great grandmother.

Henry Lawrence Heim – Died on August 15, 1959 and is buried in Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Chelsea, Washtenaw Co., MI. Henry married Vera Gage in 1916 in Jackson, Jackson Co., MI. He is my wife’s great grandfather.

Surname Sunday | HAU

My mother’s surname is Hau. Wilhelm Hau came to America from Prussia, probably in the 1860’s. He settled in Sheboygan County, WI as a farmer. He married Kathrine Tuepper in 1869. They had nine children together. Wilhelm died in 1884 at the age of 41. One of their sons, John, is my great grandfather. He, together with his sons Raymond and Clarence, owned and operated Hau’s Lion Cafeteria in Fond du Lac, Fond du Lac Co., WI.