Mary Lou Kritter Bohen, Paul Drueke, Chris Lachner, Marc Matthews, Mitchell Noll, Jeff Qualmann, Marge Fallon Qualmann, Shane Logie Rood, Toni Wurzburg Viertel, Frederick Vogt, and Father Franz Rinschen contributed to this family history.
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Wilhelm Born in 1793
Ostentrop, 1793-1798. Johann Wilhelm Drüecke was born April 17, 1793, in Ostentrop.
Ostentrop is in the county of Olpe, or Kreis Olpe. The county of Olpe is in the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia, or Nordrhein-Westfalen. North Rhine and Westphalia were combined into one state after World War II. Prussia did not acquire Westphalia until the Congress of Vienna in 1815. The postal code for Ostentrop is 57413. It is 67 miles east northeast of Cologne, or Köln. Ostentrop is 2 miles east of the Lenne River, just south of the Ebbe mountains, or Ebbegebirge, in a chain of hills called the Sauerland.
Johann Wilhelm was called Wilhelm. He was the second child of Johann and Elisabeth Bitter Drüecke. Their first child was Johann Joseph born in 1791.
The Drüecke family lived in a house in Ostentrop at the intersection of Mittelweg and St. Lucia Straße. The house was built around 1740. Wilhelm's father was a trader. He bought cured hams from processors in the Ostentrop area and transported them by horse and wagon to Münster, 66 miles to the north, and to Frankfurt, 107 miles to the south. He also dealt in mineral water from the town of Selters (where the name seltzer water originated). Selters is on the route between Ostentrop and Frankfurt, 68 miles from Ostentrop.
Wilhelm's mother, Elisabeth Bitter, was the second wife of Wilhelm's father Johann. His first wife, Maria Elisabeth Kremer, died in 1790. They had been married 13 years but had no children. Johann remarried within two months.
In 1795, Wilhelm's brother Franz Anton was born in Ostentrop.
In 1797, Wilhelm's sister Maria Katharina was born.
On May 4, 1798, Wilhelm's father Johann Drüecke died at age 55. His mother Elisabeth was 27. She had been marrried seven years. Her four children ranged in age from 10 months to six years. Wilhelm was five years old.
Wilhelm's mother Elisabeth remarried that same year on December 27, 1898. Wilhelm's new stepfather was Ferdinand Wortmann, from Lenhausen, 3.5 miles west northwest of Ostentrop, on the Lenne River.
Binolen, 1798-1827. Wilhelm's family moved to Binolen, which is on the Hönne River 23 miles north northwest of Ostentrop, near Balve. Ferdinand and Elisabeth had two children of their own. Binolen is where Wilhelm grew up.
On June 10, 1815, Westphalia became part of Prussia. Westphalia is part of Old Saxony, which consisted of Lower Saxony and western Saxony-Anhalt in addition to Westphalia.
In 1821, Wilhelm's sister and brother marrried into the Gottschalk family. On June 25, Maria Katharina Drüecke, 23, married Franz Anton Gottschalk. On November 6, Johann Joseph Drüecke, 30, married Antonette Margarethe Gottschalk. Johann Joseph and Antonette Margarethe moved into the house in Ostentrop and had nine children there.
Anna Maria Born in 1799
Niederhelden, 1799-1827. Anna Maria Struck was born March 21, 1799, in Niederhelden.
Niederhelden is in the county of Olpe, or Kreis Olpe. The county of Olpe is in the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia, or Nordrhein-Westfalen. North Rhine and Westphalia were combined into one state after World War II. Prussia did not acquire Westphalia until the Congress of Vienna in 1815. Niederhelden is seven miles southwest of Ostentrop. It is 26 miles south southeast of Binolen. The postal code is 57439. Niederhelden is in a chain of hills called the Sauerland.
Anna Maria's parents were Johann and Maria Elisabeth Pflug Struck. Johann was a farmer, and the family lived in Niederhelden.
On June 10, 1815, Westphalia became part of Prussia.
Wilhelm and Anna Maria Marry in 1827, Have 2 Children
Wilhelm Drüecke, 34, and Anna Maria Struck, 28, were married at St. Hippolytus in Helden on October 30, 1827. Witnesses were Hermann Göbel and Wilhelm Göbel, both of Niederhelden.
Niederhelden, 1827-1831. After the wedding, Wilhelm and Anna Maria Struck Drüecke lived in Niederhelden, where Wilhelm was a farmer.
On October 16, 1828, Wilhelm and Anna Maria had their first child, Maria Elisabeth Antonetta. Godparents were Maria Elisabeth Pflug Göbel from Niederhelden and Ferdinand Wortmann, a farmer from Binolen. Ferdinand was probably Wilhelm's stepbrother.
On October 20, 1831, Wilhelm and Anna Maria had a second daughter who died the day she was born.
Wilhelm Widowed at Age 38
Niederhelden, 1831-1833. With Anna Maria's death in 1831, Wilhelm was widowed at age 38 after only four years of marriage. He had one child, Maria Elisabeth Antonetta, age 3.
Anna Maria Dies in 1831 at Age 33
Anna Maria Struck Drüecke died on December 6, 1831, in Niederhelden. She was 33 years old. She left her husband Wilhelm and daughter Maria Elisabeth Antonetta. She had been married four years. Anna Maria was buried in Helden on December 9.
Bernardina Heller Born 1812
Rieflinghausen, 1812-1833. Josephina Bernardina Heller was born January 6, 1812, in Rieflinghausen. Godparents were Herr Schultheiß Caspar Belke from Niederhelden and Lillod Kaufmann from Menden.
Rieflinghausen is in the county of Olpe, or Kreis Olpe. The county of Olpe is in the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia, or Nordrhein-Westfalen. North Rhine and Westphalia were combined into one state after World War II. Rieflinghausen is 2.5 miles southwest of Helden. The postal code is 57439. Rieflinghausen is in a chain of hills called the Sauerland.
Bernardina's parents were Johann Everhard and Klara Kosack Heller. The family lived in Rieflinghausen, which is part of the parish of St. Hippolytus in Helden.
Bernardina's paternal grandparents were Caspar and Anna Catharina Maria Pulte of Rieflinghausen.
Bernardina's maternal grandoparents were Friedrich and Antonette Cosak of Menden.
On June 10, 1815, Westphalia became part of Prussia.
Wilhelm and Bernardina Marry in 1833, Have 7 Children
Wilhelm Drüeke, 39, and Bernardina Heller, 20, were married at St. Hippolytus in Helden on February 12, 1833. Witnesses were Franz Anton Heller from Rieflinghausen and Hermann Göbel from Niederhelden. The latter also had been a witness at Wilhelm's first marriage.
Niederhelden, 1833-1854. After the wedding, Wilhelm and Bernardina Heller Drüecke lived in Niederhelden, where Wilhelm was a farmer.
On December 4, 1833, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their first child, Klemens Franz Wilhelm Anton. Godparents were the parish priest at St. Hippolytus, Father Klemens Anton Spieker, and Maria Katharina Gottshalk from Seidfeldt in the parish of Stockum.
On Christmas Eve, December 24, 1835, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their second child, Everhard. Godparents were Everhard Wortmann from Binolen and Theresia Heller Gabriel from Helden. Everhard was probably Wilhelm's stepbrother.
On August 6, 1838, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their third child, Charlotte. Godparents were Charlotte Heller from Rieflinghausen and Friedrich Anton Wortmann, Wilhelm's stepfather from Binolen.
On October 31, 1840, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their fourth child, Anna Maria Sophia Klementina. Godmother was Berhardina Pulte, who was the cook for the parish priest in Schönholthausen, Father Pulte. Godfather was Wilhelm Drüeke, son of Johann Joseph Drueke from Ostentrop. The godfather, Wilhelm, was 17 and the nephew of the baby's father, Wilhelm.
On February 15, 1843, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their fifth child, Anna Elisabeth. Godmother was Anna Elisabeth Struck Gerke, widow of Johann Peter Gerke from Niederhelden. Godfather was Kaspar Heller, a farmer from Oberveischede, 3.5 miles south of Niederhelden, probably related to Bernardina.
On January 13, 1846, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their sixth child, Anna Sophia. Godmother was Anna Elisabeth Struck Kordes, wife of Joseph Kordes, a farmer from Helden. Godfather was the parish priest at St. Hippolytus, Father Johann Wilhelm Pulte. The Kordes home is No. 19 on this Helden Map.
On January 18, 1853, Wilhelm and Bernardina had their seventh child, Peter Wilhelm. Godmother was Berhardiona Pulte Sauer, wife of Everhard Sauer from Jäckelchen, 2.5 miles south of Niederhelden. Godfatrher was Peter Göbel, a farmer from Niederhelden.
Wilhelm Dies at Age 61 in 1854
Wilhelm Drüeke died in Niederhelden on October 24, 1854. He was 61. He was buried at St. Hippolytus on October 27.
Bernardina Widowed at age 42
Niederhelden, 1854-1887. Upon the death of Wilhelm, Berardina was widowed at age 42. She had been married for 21 years. She was left with eight children ranging in age from 22 months to 26.
In 1857, Bernardina's son Eberhard, age 22, emigrated to America, from Bremen to Castle Garden in New York on the ship C.J. Borgstedt, arriving on October 6. The 1907 history of St. Mary's Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, lists Eberhard Druecke as one of the founding parishioners in 1857. Eberhard eventually moved to Milwaukee, where he married and raised a family and worked as a tanner. Eberhard died some time between 1900 and 1910.
On January 30, 1862, Bernardina's daughter Charlotte married Joseph Vogt in Helden. They had nine children in Helden. In 1883, they emigrated from Helden to Grand Rapids, Michigan. Joseph's first wife Lisette Gabriel had died in 1860. They had had three children in Helden.
On November 27, 1866, Bernardina's son Clemens married Josephine Drueke in Helden. They had two children.
On February 26, 1867, Bernardina's daughter Anna Maria Sophia Klementina, 26, married Clemens Henze, a widower. Clemens had prviously been married to Catherine Bayer and had three children. They had two children of their own.
On May 24, 1870, Bernardina's son-in-law, Clemens Henze, died in Helden, where he was a farmer. He was buried at St. Hippolytus Church on May 26. Klementina was left with five children, including the three from Clemens' prior marriage to Catherine Bayer.
In 1871, Bernardina's two youngest children, Anna Sophia, 25, and Wilhelm Peter, 18, emigrated to America. They were accompanied by Anna Sophia's fiancé Frederick William Wurzburg, 39, and Frederick's five children age 3 to 14. Frederick had married Augusta Heller in 1856, but she died in 1870.
They all left Hamburg on September 6 on the Hamburg America Line steamship Thuringia and arrived in New York at Castle Garden on September 19 after a voyage of 13 days.
Frederick William Wurzburg had immigrated from Helden to New York in 1847 at age 14, arriving in Baltimore on September 9. He had come with his brother Peter, 24, and sister Anna Catharina, 26. Peter eventually became a shoemaker in Grand Rapids. In 1854, two more brothers of Frederick came to the United States: Frank, 29, to Grand Rapids, where he was a clothes cutter, and John, 25, to New York City, where he was a shoemaker. Frederick became a dry goods retailer in New York City. In 1852, Frederick married Augusta Heller in New York, and they had five children before Augusta died on April 8, 1871.
Frederick and Anna Sophia were married in New York and they lived in New York over Frederick's dry goods store in East Harlem on the southwest corner of Third Avenue and 120th Street at 2198 Third Avenue. William Peter probably lived with them. They remained in New York for two years before moving to Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Frederick W. Wurzburg was last listed in the New York directory in 1872 and first listed in the Grand Rapids directory in 1873. William Peter Drueke was never listed in the New York directory and first listed in the Grand Rapids directory in 1873. In 1875, Frederick Wurzburg and William Drueke were listed in the Grand Rapids directory at the same address on the west side of the Grand River at 38 Summer Street. Frederick started a department store, F. W. Wurzburg, in Grand Rapids.
On November 23, 1882, William Peter, 29, married Elizabeth Berles, 24, at St. Mary's Church in Grand Rapids. Witnesses were William's brother-in-law, Frederick William Wurzburg, and Laura Gobel. Elizabeth's family was originally from Dorlar, 21 miles northwest of Niederhelden. William Peter went into business as a wholesale liquor dealer in Grand Rapids
On August 10, 1883, Bernardina's daughter, Charlotte Drueke Vogt, 45, and her husband Joseph, 56, emigrated from Helden to America with nine children: Peter, 26 (from Joseph's first marriage); Dina, 19; Clemens, 17; Engelbert, 14; Wilhelm, 11; Hubert, 9; Paula, 7; Franz, 4; and Felix, 11 months. They arrived on the ship Rhynland from Antwerp to castle Garden. They lived at 74 Summer Street (226 Summer Avenue NW after 1912) in Grand Rapids. This was just down the block from Charlotte's sister, Anna Sophia Drueke Wurzburg, at 107 (135 Summer Avenue NW after 1912). In 1887, Charlotte Drueke Vogt’s daughter Bernadine married John Knape. In 1898, John Knape purchased the assets of the Grand Rapids Cycle Company and started the John Knape Machine Co. In 1902, Charlotte Drueke Vogt’s son Englebert Vogt went into partnership with her son-in-law John Knape. In 1906, John and Englebert formed the Knape & Vogt Manufacturing Company. In 1909, Knape & Vogt purchased the Harrison Wagon Works on 40 acres of land at 658 Richmond Street. Harrison had purchased the land from John Adam Schickell for a new wagon works that opened in 1879. Knape & Vogt celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1998. Principal products are drawer slides and adjustable shelving.
On March 1, 1884, Bernardina's daughter, Anna Sophia Drueke Wurzburg died at age 37. She was buried in Mt. Calvary Cemetery in Grand Rapids. She was survived by her husband of 13 years, Frederick William Wurzburg, and five children, one of whom, Francis Lewis, would become publisher of Cosmopolitan in New York City. A child of Francis Lewis, Elinor Craw Wurzburg, would marry William Van Duzer Lawrence, grandson of the founder of Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York. Their grandchild, Elizabeth Ann Logie, married William Bloomer, brother of First Lady Betty Ford. Their great grandchild, John Logie, was mayor of Grand Rapids from 1992 to 2003.
In 1885, widower Frederick William Wurzburg, 52, married Theresa, 35, and they had five children.
Bernardina Dies in 1887 at Age 75
Bernardina Heller Drüeke died on March 17, 1887. She was 75 years old. She was buried at St. Hippolytus Church on March 21. She had been a widow for 32 years,
Wilhelm and Anna Maria and Bernardina: 9 children, 34 grandchildren, 56 great grandchildren
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