According to my g-g-grandmother's obit, her first husband, Heert Wilms Heerts, died 3 weeks after they arrived (April 1869) in the USA from Germany. It sounds like they were living near Forreston, Ogle Co., IL, when he died. My g-grandmother was the oldest of 3 children, and she was 5 when they immigrated.
I'm really curious about him:
- I can't imagine a young couple with 3 young children leaving their homeland if he was not in good health.
- Even if this was the case, he would have not been allowed into the USA, due to his health.
- They made it to IL within 3 weeks of landing in the USA--how could they manage that, if he had health problems?
I have found no obituary or tombstone for him, so how do I find out what he died of, and where he was buried? How can I connect with other descendants of his?
This is what info I have on Heert:
Heert Heerts Immigration name: Heert Heerts event: Immigration event date: 19 Apr 1869 event place: New York, New York, New York, United States gender: Male age: 33 country of origin or birth: Germany occupation: Shoemaker ship: Weser estimated birth year: 1836 departure port: Bremen literacy: Unknown last residence: destination: United States transit or travel compartment: manifest identification number: 00031120 narapublication title: Germans to America Passenger Data file, 1850-1897 arc identifier: 1746067
Citing this Record "United States, Germans to America Index, 1850-1897," index, /FamilySearch/ (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/KDQ7-5NH : accessed 29 Dec 2012), Heert Heerts, 1869.
HEERTS Posted By: Tammy (email) Date: 9/12/2011 at 20:41:00
Mrs. John Heerts Called
Death came to Mrs. John Heerts Monday morning at the home of her son west of Holland and in her passing Grundy county lost another old pioneer as Mrs. Heerts had lived in the county since 1871.
Mrs. Heerts was born in Germany and came to America in 1869, settling near Forreston, Ill., where Mr. Heerts died three weeks after he reached America. In 1871, Mrs. Heerts moved to this county where she has since resided.
Mrs. Heerts is survived by five children, two sons, Will of Colfax township and Ed of Stout, and three daughters, Mrs. Yunker [Junker], of Buck Grove, Mrs. Myers, of Lincoln township, and Wilmke who was at home.
The funeral was held at 1 o'clock from the Drake church and was attended by a large number of friends and relatives.
--Grundy Republican (Grundy Center, Iowa), 6 November 1913
It's possible that Jan/John Heerts may have already been established in Iowa, and there may have been a blurb in the newspaper there?
I have wondered if he might have drowned, a tree fell on him while he was building their home, etc. I have not found ANY info on their family--newspapers, tombstones, etc. in the area. I have wondered if there might be a newspaper back in Germany that might shed some light on it, but I have no idea how to go about researching this, since I don't know German.