Category Archives: when

Julia Scocimara

Julia Scocimara was born in Hamburg, Germany, in 1967. She moved to Canada when she was two years old. She moved with her family because her parents had lived in Germany during World War II and wanted a fresh start in someplace other than Germany. Her father was offered a job in Canada and decided it was the perfect opportunity ... Read More »

Henry Drekmeier, Mathilde and Augusta Wagner

Grandpa Henry Drekmeier spent happy hours skating on the frozen estuaries of the Rhein near Bremerhaven where he was born. I suspect this may have been in the late 1860’s since he fathered the first of his five children in 1896. In order to avoid the Bismarckian military conscription he joined the German merchant marine and spent several years sailing ... Read More »

Ivan (John) and Sarahfina’s 10 year odyssey

My Grandma and Grandpa decided to leave Simbirsk, Russia and begin a new life in the United States. They started their emigration from Simbursk in Oct. 1900 traveling through Siberia to China. Eventually they left Harbin Manchuria China, with John (Ivan), their only surviving child, and made their way to Kobe, Japan. In March of 1910 – 10 years since ... Read More »

Jia Qin

Jia is a recent immigrant studying English at the San Mateo Adult School. She came from China, near Beijing, and while she immediately appreciated the cleaner air and the beautiful Pacific, she felt lonely. Making friends with classmates has made a big difference in her life. View her video on the web site post. Read More »

Francis Squair

Francis Squair (seated with his 3 brothers and 2 sisters) was my great-grandfather. He was born in the Scottish Highlands just east of Loch Ness in 1848. After studying pharmacology at the University of Edinburgh, he and his brothers immigrated to Chicago around 1868. I can’t say why, but I surmise they were victims of the Highland Clearances, efforts by ... Read More »

Carl Carlson

My grandfather was born in Sweden and came to America with his wife near the turn of the 20th century. He was known on the East side of St. Paul, Minnesota as “Coffee Carlson” because he delivered coffee to various places throughout that part of town. He married Beda Wilhelmina Rudeen, but there is very little written about them. They ... Read More »

The Lanphere Family

I believe my family came from France. We have heard the Lanpheres were Protestants and left France after the massacre by Catholics in the early 1600’s. We have heard the family spent some time in Belgium, Holland, and England before coming to the U.S. in the 1790’s. I’ve been told that the first boy born in this country was named ... Read More »

John Adolph Youngquist

Johannes Hokannson was a religious man, an itinerate preacher in Sweden. His wife, Cecilia came from a wealthy family. Cecelia’s family helped her and her children considerably, but even so Grandpa said they were poor in Sweden. The state church disapproved of such preachers in Sweden; hence, he left with his wife Cecelia, and the six youngest of their seven ... Read More »

Hans Christian Vinther and Ida Frederikka Otilia Sturve Vinther

Hans (1846 – 1908) was born in Denmark and immigrated to Illinois in the early 1870’s. Probably he left to avoid being drafted into Bismark’s German army. A short time later, he and a close friend, Martin Nelson moved to Texas. Then Hans sent for his German fiancée, Ida, (1852 – 1931) to join him. Hans’ brother Jorgen Theodor Vinther ... Read More »

Nicole Cheng

Nicole is a recent immigrant from Taiwan who is studying English at the San Mateo Adult School. Watch her talk about her new life on the video that is embedded into the post on our Made Into America web site. Read More »

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