|Johann Bruhns (1848-1934)|
Over the last 10 years or so, I've delved deeper into my maternal family history and had the good fortune to learn more about Andrea's and my Great Great Grandpa Bruhns. I've already written quite a bit about him in this blog. He was born in Holstein, Germany, in 1848, and arrived in the United States in 1870. He married Christina Marguerita Schlichtmann in 1881, and they raised five children on their Tracy farm: Matilda, Christina (Andrea's great grandmother), Johanna (my great grandmother), Bertha and John.
John Bruhns and his family farmed in what was then known as the Bethany area of Tracy, which was a few miles south of the main part of town. Johanna went to grammar school at Jefferson Elementary (the "rival" country to school to my alma mater, New Jerusalem Elementary, which was the other country school on the rural south side of Tracy).
|The 1930 US Census that shows John & Christina Bruhns living with their son, John Jr. on what was then |
known as Carnegie Road. I can see that they are living next to another relative, Johannes Krohn.
(Click on the image for a larger view)
For years, our family have driven past the old Bruhns farm at the corner of Corral Hollow and Valpico roads, but I never paid much attention. Now, whenever I'm in the area, I try to do a drive-by to make sure the big barn is still standing and in good shape. It's now partially hidden between two of the large churches that have sprung up in the area, and I'm always afraid that someone is going to make an offer that the current owner can't refuse and then tear down a piece of Tracy history, and my own family history. This past weekend, I cajoled my boyfriend into driving up the little dirt road between the two churches and take a picture of the barn. The man working there was a bit perplexed by us, and had no idea who John Bruhns was, but allowed me to get out of the car and snap a few shots. Here's what I saw!
|John Bruhns' barn at the corner of Corral Hollow & Valpico Roads in Tracy, CA|
|Here's a satellite shot (thanks to Google Maps!) of the barn nestled between the two big churches:|
|John Jr., with his dogs and his ride, along the side of the barn|