Hormel family visits the HHH

Published 4:26 pm Saturday, February 9, 2013

By Holly Johnson

Hormel Historic Home

We had some exciting visitors to the Home recently who have made me more eager to continue my research into the Hormel family line.  Three generations of Jay’s family were here as well as two granddaughters of Ben Hormel.  It was a pleasure to be able to visit with them and hear a few stories of their lives.  I will talk more about these people when I get to them in the genealogy timeline.

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So back to Germany we go.  Christian and Elizabeth are now married. “Christian was a merchant tailor by trade, very likely a trade learned from his father before him.  He operated his business from his home”, from In Quest of Quality, 1966. On Jan. 24, 1830, their first child, George John, was born.

William Henry Hormel (one of George A.Hormel’s five brothers) tells us in “One Generation Under the American Flag” how Christian and Elizabeth made their way across the sea to America.

“Our grandfather and grandmother Hormel were the first of our ancestors to come to America. Grandmother’s maiden name was Elizabeth Heiser.  She was one of twelve children. Her brother Godfey, after hearing and reading of the wonders of America, came here to see for himself, locating in Albany, New York in the year 1827. Two years later he settled in Buffalo, New York…His letters to his relatives in Germany were full of accounts in glowing terms of all that he saw and experienced. It was not long before most of them were persuaded to come. Our Hormel grandparents came with a second group in the year 1833. Our father (George A.) was only three years of age. His little sister was an infant of only one year; she died on the voyage and was buried at sea.”

Upon arriving in Buffalo Christian and Elizabeth settled in to their new community.  In May of 1838 they welcomed their second son also named Christian.  On Oct. 14, 1839, Christian applied for American citizenship and he was a founding member of The German Evangelical Reformed Zion Congregation Church in 1845.

“From France, to Germany, to Buffalo…  We are still a ways from Austin, MN, but we will get there in the coming weeks.”

What’s Happening at the HHH

Valentine’s Day parties have been celebrated in the Historic Home since 1928.  Then the YWCA “made merry with various heart contests and valentine’s mixer games,” Austin Herald, Feb. 10, 1931. Please join us this Feb. 14 for a fun filled night of great food, and energetic entertainment. Socializing starts at 5:30 p.m. and a Gourmet dinner catered by Hy-Vee will begin at 6 p.m.  Dueling Pianos by Minneapolis group The River Rats starts at 7 p.m. and you won’t want to miss out on the fun. Tickets are $50 each (includes one drink, dinner and entertainment) so call and reserve yours today.

 February Social Concerns-WPA Projects presented by Dustin Heckman

WPA Projects-President Franklin Roosevelt sought ways to bring the United States out of the Great Depression.

The programs of the New Deal became the focal point of his administration.  Join us Feb. 19 to learn about how these programs were implemented and improved life here in Mower County.  Afterwards, stop by the Austin Public Library and view the traveling exhibit, Uncle Sam’s New Deal.

 Second annual Foodie Throwdown-Taste of America

This fundraiser for the HHH will feature six competing chefs and will showcase samples from all parts of our wildly diverse nation.

The event will take place at 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 9. Come try the food and vote for your favorite area Chef. Tickets are $30. Call 507-433-4243 to order yours today.