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.