Sepia Saturday

Sepia Saturday

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Charles and Grace Burgus....

Charles Thomas Burgus
My Paternal Grandfather
Son of Charles and Elizabeth (Ries) Burgus, my great grandparents, who migrated from Germany in 1800's , 13 children were born into this family.

The family of Grace Turner Burgus and Charles Thomas Burgus

Front Row: Eva, Grace(mother), Charles(father), Mary, and Amye.
Back Row: Cecil, Ralph, Jesse(my dad), Carl, Donald and twin sister Doris.  I just realized that one of the sisters is not in the picture.  Ruby  and her husband had taken off to Washington state for a while to work a job. I don't remember what kind of job that it was.

The photo had to have been taken in the 1940's as two of the brothers are wearing their uniforms.  Unfortunately the picture was taken at about the time that one of the son's lost his own son in a drowning in Thayer Lake.

I won't give you all of the information about each but I want to share a little about some of them. Four of the sisters remained housewives most of their lives. One of them was a teacher for most of her life to help support her husbands farming and also to support herself after he died.  The one that was in Washington state lost her husband and worked as a welfare administrator the rest of her working years.
The oldest brother was a train fireman, who road the trains first to scoop coal and then eventually was a co-worker with the engineer. He was deaf after all the time he spent on the train. One brother owned a farm implement dealership then a laundromat. Two of the brothers became farmers after the war, and one brother, a mechanic, died of cancer in 1957 when they could then do nothing about it or didn't really know how to diagnose it.
The first to die was my Grandfather Burgus in 1949.  The youngest girl and last of the family to die was about five years ago. All of them are gone.
As a side note of interest, three of these sisters each lost babies due to the RH factor.   My mother, not a sibling to these women, lost a daughter because of the blood complications also.  My dad had the O blood type apparently with the wrong combo with my mom. From my research, I find that it is all related to the RH and it could affect any blood type. If one has a negative Rh and the baby develops with a positive RH it can be fatal. They now know to immediately transfuse them with the correct blood type and they survive.

I have a very bad photo of the full family of 13 that my grandfather belong, and I need to really work on it. My great grandfather Charles Burgus and his brother migrated here together, leaving behind parents and three other brothers and sisters.  While here their mother died, the father remarried so they had 6 more half brothers and sisters. 

I also have a wedding picture of my grandmother and grandfather Burgus when she and he were very thin. I need to work on that photo before I can show it. 
Grace, my grandmother was from a solid line of English blood with Abernathy and Turner in her line. 
Charles was from the German line with the mixture of Ries in it, which, I have found to be a German name also.
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My family......

My older brothers doing their thing in the front yard.

Ronald James Burgus looks into the camera while his younger brother Rex Thomas Burgus checks out the person taking the photo.  While my dad was in the service in Washington D.C. and then in Europe, these guys and mom lived with Grandma Brown, mom's mother.  This is in Murray, Iowa and I suspect the year is 1945.  Ron would be 16 months older and I think he looks close to being four years old here. The house in which they are sitting still stands today, except some time after they lived there the owner removed the second story and made it look like a ranch house.

Back row: Zella Marie Brown Burgus, Dwight Burgus and Jesse Thomas Burgus
Front row: Rex and Ron Burgus

After dad returned from the war,  Dwight Lee  was born in Feb. 1947.  At first my dad worked as a mechanic, repairing tractors.  He then made his move to become a farmer.  They rented a farm in which dad would give up half of the crop for the rent. This photo is taken out on that farm, south of Murray, near a little town called Hopeville.  Someday I will blog about Hopeville. 

Click on the picture and enjoy the chicken in the background. One also can see the photographer and friend is in the picture by checking out the shadow.

 Dwight, Rex, the border collie, and Ron

This photo is out on the rented farm in 1949 or 50.  I was born in 1950 and I think Dwight looks almost three here so I could have been born by then.  Stories I have heard from the family about the dog, was that he was so protective of his family and no one else was welcomed on the property.

Today Ron owns a printing company in Mesa, Arizona and Rex co-owns with two partners a company that make trailers for recreation vehicles in California.  Dwight started his working life as a construction worker, working as a contractor for companies in Mesa, Arizona.  As his addictions continued in his life he demoted himself to being a drywall installer and then a part time carpenter. He had to start living with my parents back in Osceola, Iowa in his later years.  My father died in 2000, age 82 and my mom passed away in 2008, age 89 years, three months after then my brother Dwight died. He was 61 years old.

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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Sepia Saturday Mom.....

Zella Marie Brown Burgus was born in 1919.  Her parents were Leroy Martin Brown and Mabel Zella Wheeler Brown.  They were poor. Zella was born in a farmhouse somewhere between Afton and Lorimor, Iowa in Madison County. Yes, the same county as the movie"Madison County Bridges." She had two older brothers Marvin and Kenneth Brown.
Her dad had many jobs but the ones that I remember most was the he dug graves.  He also owned a barber chair and cut hair, but usually no one paid him for the work.  Mom said that she never stayed in the same school longer than just one year during here elementary years.  They seemed to move every spring to whatever house that they could find available.  My own idea was there were times that they didn't have the rent, so they had to move. As my mom was going into high school, my grandmother got a job at the restaurant in Murray. It gave them money to start to own a house.

For some reason, my grandmother thought my mom should have the best education, so they put her in a rented room in Osceola, a county seat town, and she went four years of high school there, coming home on weekends. Her senior year she took Normal Training so that she could become a country school teacher.

Her senior picture above shows her in a fancy bobbed hair cut and I am assuming that this photo was her graduation dress. She was barely five foot tall so this dress makes her look like she has long arms.
Her dad died in 1937, of a lung condition, which was her senior year. 

As a country school teacher, she told how the families would bring food and they would have a large picnic near the end of the school year. Mom is older here standing with a couple of her students.  I like the background of this photo with the car and a set of parents behind her.
I have decided to tell only about the photos and not the whole story of her life.  She did become a wife and a mother of four boys.  She lived to be 89 years old and died in 2008.

While removing her senior photo from it's frame I discovered something that must have been put there back in 1937.  I will share the pressed flower bouquet in Sunday's Photo a Day. I have a couple of theories behind the flowers in the back of the picture.

Check out all of my friends who are sharing with Sepia Saturday.  Click here to view them all.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Sepia Saturday 1940's.........

This is an old photo taken of the everyday life in Belgium during the second World War. Belgium has been restored from a German takeover, and people are trying to do the things that have to be done in living a more normal life.  

The cow power is great and was probably common back then.  I like how there is a spare cow being moved along with them.

I don't remember any story about the train except that it had been disabled by the ways of war. My dad is looking out the side window of the steam locomotive here, and I am sure he traded places with the buddy who owned the camera to have the buddy's picture taken.

Visit our Sepia Saturday Site to view many fine contributions to our group endeavor.  Click here on Sepia Saturday.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Sepia Saturday.....Dad's boys.......

My dad has come home from the war.  It is 1945 in the summer.  My oldest brother Ron is on the right and Rex is on the left. The next two boys were born in '47 and '50. The photo was taken in the back yard of my grandmothers' in Murray, Iowa. I am assuming it was one of those box camera's and my mom didn't get it into focus by stepping forward or backward.

My dad was stationed in Washington D. C. the first part of the war, so when he was home for a visit, he had time to have another son.  He already had the first son born before he went into the service.  They were the prewar babies. I and my brother were the post war babies.

In many ways the war change him.  His sisters said he wasn't the same personality the rest of his life.  He may have just grown up from being an Iowan farm boy that dropped out of school at eighth grade.  Whatever the change, I didn't have anything to compare.

I know that his memories often haunted him in his daily life. He remembered and relived so much verbally with more people than our family would have liked.  He had to talk about it.  The person was still a very sensitive man who cared for others, worried about failure, worked so very hard, and was proud of his four boys. He died in 2000 at the age of 82.  He was able then to leave the war memories behind.

Others of a blog group are also participating in Sepia Saturday. Check them out at Kat's blog.