|Herman and Sarah E. (Hale) Van De Riet, parents of 8 children.|
Can you match these Dutch names to their American counterpart, or the American name to the nickname they ended up with?
Can you identify which grandparent these kids got named for (apparently)?
Can you guess how they were pronounced?
Which child did not actually belong to Sarah and Herman?
Remember, these are Grandma LaVonne's aunts and uncles, siblings to our Great Grandpa Harry VanDeRiet. I know that the Dutch names were used originally based on the census records, marriage records, and from Grandpa Herman's will that I recently picked up in Great Falls, Montana. (PS, Herman left quite a chunk of change--over $25,000 at his death in 1920. I looked that up in today's money on an inflation calculator and it would be the equivalent today of over a quarter million. Pretty good for an immigrant farmer turned ranch boss! Maybe he had just sold some property? He was renting in Great Falls when he died.)
1. Gerrit Jan A. Alice
2. Gerhard B. Will
3. Geziena C. Grace
4. Aaltje D. Minnie
5. Hermina E. John
6. Mary F. Harry
7. William Garrett G. Hi
8. Hiram H. Marie
9. Grace I. Hazel AND Zina AND Sinnie
You got that?
1. Gerrit Jan is actually John. Herman's Dad, the original immigrant, was also named Gerritjan. The fun part is that it is pronounced with a gutterel G, which means you say a hard H sound down in your throat, so it comes out like "Herreet-Yawn."
2. Gerhard is the biggest surprise to me. This is actually my Great-Grandpa Harry. It also is pronounced with an H sound, Hairhard, so I guess it makes sense he would have gone by Harry. Of all the paperwork I have on him, the only place I've seen his name as Gerhard is in Herman's will. Harry was named for Herman's little brother Gerhard (who, I think, also went as Harry.)
3. Geziena. If you've caught on to the G=H trick, you might have figured out that this is Aunt Hazel. Sounds like, Hay-seena. As a young girl she went by Sinnie (I know, weird, but there are several in her community. Then, in Herman's will he refers to her as Zina. I've only heard her spoken of as Aunt Hazel.
4. Aaltje. This is the bogus child. Aaltje got Americanized to Alice. She is actually Herman's sister-in-law.
5. Hermina is Minnie. Understandable. Herman has a sister and a grandmother named Hermina, a very prevalent name in the Van De Riet family.
6. Mary is Aunt Marie. I don't know why she didn't just stick with Mary. Too common? Sarah's mother's name was Mary Ann Poole Hale.
7. William Garrett is Uncle Will. Sarah has a brother Will and also a Grandpa William Poole, so I guess that's where this comes from. It's kind of funny that they use the name Garrett twice.
8. Hiram is Uncle Hi. Named for Sarah's father Hiram Hale who fought in the Civil War.
9. Grace is Grace.
Now do you want to meet these half-Dutch Americans? Here are a few photos.
|John, Harry (my Great-Grandpa), Will, Hiram Van De Riet|
|Uncle Hi Van De Riet, 1941, Portland. Talk about a 100 watt smile!|
|Marie, Minnie, Hi, Hazel, and Grace. Love the fancy dresses.|