Monthly Archives: August 2015

Family Reunion

With our recent adventures,  part of what we missed was a family reunion in Iowa on 8 Aug 2015.  One of my 4 sets of great grandparents were Nicholas Frederick Goeser and Mary Eva Sonntag.  I never knew either of them but knew of them all my life because of regular gatherings of extended family consisting of their descendants.  In addition to attending numerous wedding, funeral, and anniversary events, we had a Goeser family reunion on the 4th of July every year of my childhood. There was seldom anyone with the name “Goeser” at these gatherings because Nick and Mary had 4 daughters who married into different names and a foster son who was the son of Mary’s cousin.  These reunions seem to have been a long tradition among the German Catholic families that are my heritage on my mother’s side.  Although I missed the most recent reunion, my cousins have shared many pictures with me so I thought I would post a few historical photos from this family line along with some from the most recent event.

Langenfeld-Johann-Johanna-1898A Photo from 1898, of my great great grandparents and their family. (Nick Goeser’s grandparents).

Nick’s Mother and Father, Anna Langenfeld and Joseph Goeser are in this picture though I have not specifically identified them.  The gathering is of Anna’s parents and 8 siblings.



Goeser-FamilyReunion1Another from about 1925.  This is the Goeser family with Nick and most of his 8 living siblings.  I can identify my great grandfather, Nick; my grandparents Bertha Goeser and Joe Mickels; and my mother, Alvina Mickels, and her sister, my aunt Edna, when they were about 7 and 9 years old.

ReunionGoeserHouseAnd from 1929, a wedding gathering for my great aunt Cecelia, Nick’s 2nd of 4 daughters. My mother and aunt, my grandmother and 3 great aunts are among the people shown here.  The picture is taken in front of the home Nick Goeser built 20 years earlier and in which my cousins still live today.

Pictures from the 2015 reunion:11094667_10156023744360226_7833149195133920611_n

Hanging on the barn Nick Goeser built is a picture of him and his four daughters:




Here are the living grandchildren of Nick and Mary who made it to the reunion.




Descendants of Nick and Mary’s first daughter, Bertha, my grandmother, who married Joseph Mickels and had 2 daughters, Edna (Schomer) and Alvina (Borkowski);




Descendants of their 2nd daughter, Cecelia, who married Leo Waltz, and had 3 children, one of whom married and had children. Jerry Waltz, their son, is seated to the right;





Descendants of their third daughter, Irene, who married Art Hoffmann, with two of Irene’s children, Marie and Harold, present;



Descendants of their fourth daughter, Marcella, who married Sylvester Michels. One of Marcella’s sons, Joe, farms the original Goeser farm which has been designated a Century Farm in Iowa.  The reunion was at their place and most of Marcella’s descendants are present.




Descendants of Nick and Mary’s foster son Leo Sonntag.  Leo married Isabelle Mickels and had several children.




One picture of most everyone attending the reunion.  Pictured are two people who are also pictured in the 1929 photo from Cecelia’s wedding.  I am waiting to hear from any cousins who can identify who those two people are.

I published a book last year on the Goeser family.  At the time of publication I had included 294 descendants of Nick and Mary Goeser, most of whom are still living.