Herman Rathke

The nineteenth ancestor in my 52 week challenge is my 3rd-great-grandfather, Herman RATHKE.

According to vital records and his headstone, Herman was born 22 February 1831. Though, the place of birth is somewhat more of a mystery as I have only been able to track it to “Germany” which could mean almost anywhere in central Europe at the time. Herman’s parents are unknown to me at this time, also.

At some point, he married Fredericke C HENKE. On 1 September 1857, my ancestor, and their first child (as far as I can tell) Wilomene “Minnie” RATHKE was born. Her birthplace has been documented as “Pommerania, Prussia” which could also mean many different locations. According to other records, including census records, Herman and Fredericke had 3 more sons, Fred, Math, and Carl.

In February 1887, the Rathke family, along with Minnie and her first husband, Frederick Holz, emigrated to the United States. They settled in Grafton, Ozaukee County, Wisconsin.

Herman is never actually listed in any of the census records as he passed away in February 1898. He is buried at Union Cemetery in Port Washington, Wisconsin, which is quite near Grafton.

This post is 19 of 52 in the “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks” Challenge” begun by Amy Johnson Crow.

About Brian Zalewski

I started genealogy research about mid-1999. My grandfather had passed away in April of that year. Since then I’ve done a lot of research not only for myself, but for friends and other relatives. In 2006, I married the love of my life, Darcy, and welcomed the birth of our daughter, Aerissa Jean, in 2010 and our son, Xander Lee, in 2012. I can’t wait to tell them stories about all of their ancestors.

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In 27 days, on April 2nd, the sixteenth census of the United States, the 1940 US Census, will be released to the public. Due to privacy laws, the census reports are released to the public 72 years after they’ve been taken. The last one, the 1930 US Census, was released back in 2002. 1940 is not […]

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