Showing posts from August, 2018


Independance is the theme for week 27 and immediately brought someone to mind, though not an ancestor.

My aunt Lien was fiercely independent. She grew up in the Dutch East Indies and when in 1945 the Indonesian Republic was proclaimed, declaring independence from the the Netherlands, she and the rest of her family were repatriated from Java back to "home". She would not see the land of her birth again until some fifty years later when she travelled back to Java visiting some of her favourite places from her childhood and reconciling to the modern Indonesia.

Her teenage years from the age of fourteen to seventeen she spent in one of the Japanese civilian concentration camp on Java. These were difficult years and her  defiance got her in trouble with camp authorities.

Lien had thick long ash blonde hair which she wore in a simple style of a low bun in the nape of the neck. It reached down to her waist and she would only have it trimmed from time to time. Washing and drying her…

Black Sheep?

The week 26 prompt - Black Sheep - really had me scratching my head and digging around the family tree, but no likely candidate popped up. This is not to say that there were no black sheep in the family, just that to my knowledge everyone behaved themselves more or less.

Then, a candidate does appear, from my Facebook feed! I got a post from the group Ald Driezum, which is all about the history and families of the village of Driezum, in Friesland, Netherlands, where the Lawerman family has its roots. It was a snapshot of an advertisement that had appeared in 1868 in the Leeuwarder Courant advertising the sale of the bakery buildings in Driezum, belonging to a Thomas Lawerman. Reading through the ad I see that a Deurwaarder or Bailiff is managing the sale. So it seems that this Thomas Lawerman got into financial trouble and had to sell some of his assets. Was he an ancestor? Probably; I do have a great great grandfather Thomas Lawerman, who was a baker in Driezum and who lived at that…

Same Name - Reith

For the week 25 prompt, Same Name - I've decided to take a look at a branch of the family tree that I haven't paid much attention to and that is the Reith family. So it is the surname that is the thread.

When I looked up surname origins I could only find references for the Scottish origins of the name.  There is also a town called Reith in Lower Saxony but the Reiths I am concerned with come originally from Eschwege, Hesse.

Reith is my maternal grandmother's maiden name. She was the third child, second daughter of Christoph Wilhelm Emil Reith, who was born 8 November 1856 in Eschwege, Germany. Her older brother was named Willi Ernst August Alfred and an older sister was called just Else.

Meta named her youngest daughter Gretel, after her own younger sister, and her oldest son Edwin, after her youngest brother,  Edwin. Her second son she also named Willi after her older brother, together with the name Emil, after her father and then Justus, possibly after her husband's …