Thursday, February 25, 2016

A Family Affair -- Ridott or Bust

One of the benefits of spending time in the records of a place -- whether viewed live, on microfilm, or on the Internet -- is that you become familiar with names you might encounter elsewhere as you research your family history. Such was the case with the Terschelling civil registrations (births, marriages, deaths) and the Midsland parish records (baptisms, marriages, burials).

As you might recall, Sipke Zorgdrager landed in Ridott, Stephenson County, Illinois, after his 1868 migration. Scrolling through the census, other Terschelling names appeared, including Cupido, de Vries, de Graaf, Limburg, and Schaap -- although some were fairly badly mangled by the census enumerator. Obviously, this spot on the prairie had triggered at least a small-scale chain migration.

1870 Census, Stephenson Co. IL
Sipke Zorgdrager, written something more like Seipke Syadager, was living in the household of Peter "de Fries" (see February 11 post).  Peter was Pieter de Vries, the older brother of Sipke's wife, Tryntje de Vries. This caused me to wonder if other members of Sipke's and Tryntje's Terschelling families had also emigrated to Illinois. Time spent correlating information from Dutch civil registration records, emigration records, and U.S. Census records said "yes."

Tryntje de Vries had  six siblings. At least three emigrated, all leaving Terschelling in 1868 -- probably at the same time as their sister and Sipke Zorgdrager.

Maria married Johannes Cornelis Schaap. They also left Terschelling in 1868. They were in Stephenson County in 1870, but by 1880 Johannes was in Washington Township in the far northwest corner of Butler County. Maria was absent; she had died shortly after the family went to Iowa.

Jan married Geertje Cornelis Groendijk. They, too, left Terschelling in 1868,  and were settled in Etna Township, Hardin County, Iowa, in 1870. Their 1 year-old daughter had been born in Illinois -- likely in Stephenson County -- suggesting their move to Iowa was late 1869 or early 1870.

Pieter married Maamke Cornelis Bos. They left Terschelling in 1868, and made room in their Illinois home for Sipke's family in 1870. By 1880, they moved on the to far northwest corner of Butler County, Iowa, just a few miles from  where his brother Jan lived in 1870.

Sipke Zorgdrager had five brothers and sisters. Three emigrated.

Jantje Zorgdrager and Foppe de Graaf, Newkirk Cemetery
Jantje married Foppe Dirks de Graaf. They left Terschelling in 1867, a year before Sipke. By 1870,they were living next door to Jan Pieters de Vries (John De Fries) in Etna Township, Hardin County, Iowa. Foppe and Jantje had apparently paused at least briefly in Illinois, because their 2 year-old son had been born in Illinois.

Andries married Tyntje Iemkes Kooyman; she died on Terschelling in 1862. Andries remarried to Keyke Hek. They emigrated in 1868, probably along with Sipke. They lived in Etna Township, Hardin County, Iowa, in 1870 (clearly entered as "Andrew," but indexed "Anchises Sorgadrane"). The family might have gone straight to Iowa; they certainly didn't stay long in Illinois, because their 1-year-old daughter had been born in Iowa.

Jan married Neeltje Cornelis Swart. Jan was the laggard, not leaving Terschelling until 1882. He was, after all, the youngest child of Pieter Zorgdrager and Martje Cupido. By this time, they probably went directly to Sioux County in northwest Iowa, where Sipke and his other siblings ended up. Their son, Pieter, was born in March 1880. A daughter, Jennie, was born in Iowa about 1883 (1900 U.S. Census, O'Brien County, Iowa). Jan's (and Sipke's) father probably emigrated at the same time. The elder Pieter was living with Sipke Zorgdrager in Holland Township of Sioux County in 1875.

When I searched the index for Netherlands-born families in the 1870 census, I saw several families from "OS Friesland." At first, this made sense, because Terschelling lies just off the coast of Friesland, a northern province of the Netherlands. But, when I also saw near neighbors from Hanover (in northwestern Germany), I realized that "OS" stood for  "Ost," as in Ost-Friesland, a distinct area in northwestern Germany along the Netherlands border.

The question arose: Is there a good explanation for why the Dutch Terschellingers settled in Illinois amongst the Ostfries? I will tackle that question next week (hopefully) when I write about what I call the Ikea Effect.

No comments:

Post a Comment