Hormels visit the old home

Published 6:17 pm Saturday, May 24, 2014

Three generations of Hormels have visited the Hormel Historic Home in the last week — all from the Ben F. Hormel family line. Ben is George’s youngest brother.

One came to hand-deliver family research that was recently done in Germany, and the other two came to see where so much of their family history occurred.

Let me back up. In 2013, an avid Hormel family member and researcher worked with a professional genealogy professional in Germany to compile a complete family history as far back as the records go. Recently, Anabeth Hormel Cox and her husband, Ted, hand-delivered hard-bound copies of the research of both the Hormel and Decker family lines dating back to the early 1700s. The information is fascinating and we are grateful that Ben’s branch of the family tree is so interested in preserving the entire family history.

Email newsletter signup

The family member who contracted the German researcher recently visited both the Schwalbach and Neuweid regions of Germany and was able to see the areas where the family immigrated from. The books will be in the HHH library if you would like to take a look at them.

The other visitors came all the way from Hawaii to see us. Daniel Grounds is the great-grandson of Ben Hormel. His grandmother, Virginia Hormel Grounds, was born in Austin.

She married Gene Grounds and they moved to California where they raised their two children. Their son, also Gene, moved to Hawaii in the 1960s and that is where our visitors come in.

Daniel Grounds, his wife Summer and children Surfia and Ozzie with Hormel Historic Home executive director Holly Johnson. Photo provided

Daniel Grounds, his wife Summer and children Surfia and Ozzie with Hormel Historic Home executive director Holly Johnson. Photo provided

Daniel and his wife Summer brought their two children (the third generation), Surfia and Ozzie, to Austin so they could see where Daniel’s family made such a mark. Not only did they tour the HHH, but they also visited the Hormel Institute and the Spam Museum. They experienced some of Austin’s finest dining at the Tendermaid and the Old Mill. Thanks to the realtor, they were also able to see the inside of the house where Ben F. Hormel raised his family. That house is currently on the market at 609 Fourth St. NW.

Daniel said he’s always known he was a Hormel but seeing the town, and the legacy, that his family helped to build was important to him.  Now his own young family has experienced a little bit of that history.  I look forward to staying in touch with this generation of the Hormel family.

Charlie Maguire Day

10 a.m., June 17

Noted storyteller and songwriter will share favorites from the 20s, 30s, and 40s. Participants will create a special song based on their own memories.

This program is free and geared to those 50 and over.

Limited to 30 participants so please call to register. 507-433-4243

TWANG Workshop

1 p.m., June 17

Register to learn the how to play the ancient instrument the Jaw Harp.  Charlie will teach you how to play some familiar songs in three easy steps. Cost is $7 per person to cover the cost of the Jaw Harp. Register through Austin Community Education, 507-460-1706

1st Peace Garden Concert

6:30 p.m., June 17

Join us in the beautiful Peace Garden for a fun concert featuring the folky, Woody Guthrie style, sound of Charlie Maguire.  His set features songs that tell of the beauty of our state.