Nestled atop a rolling prairie hill,
Covered with native grasses and wildflowers,
Is a small, serene resting spot
For ancestors of many kinfolk.
      Home Cemetery
      On Rolling Prairie Road
      In Mill Creek Township

The final resting place for
Christian and Wilhelmina Henneberg
And many other Henneberg kinfolk,
Neighbors and friends of the 1850’s.

A mile to the west of Home Cemetery,
Nestled atop a wooded creek bank,
Is a tiny, serene resting spot
The early home of Henneberg kinfolk.
Tucked away, near the early home:
      A burial spot without a name
      On Major Jenkins Road
      In Mill creek Township

The final resting place for
Carl and Catherine Henneberg
And several others of their family.

First generation Henneberg immigrants:
Carl, born in Bernberg, Germany,
Emigrated to the United States in 1854
With his wife, Catherine, and children
Found their way to Kansas circa 1857,
Sharing the challenges of the journey
From West Point; Lee County, Iowa.
We can only imagine why Carl chose
The tiny spot on Mill Creek for his first home.
This tiny spot held hope far from Germany
To become a family burial spot.

      A burial spot without a name
      On Major Jenkins Road

Mounted on a native limestone rock,
A bronze memorial plaque now eternalizes
      A burial spot without a name
And the heritage brought forth by this family.
Near here are buried in unmarked graves:
      Carl and Catherine Henneberg
      Their son Charles Henneberg
Susanna and her daughter Lena Henneberg
Infants: Gustaf and Theresa Henneberg

Two miles to the west of Major Jenkins Road,
Nestled in a blush, green valley
Rimmed by trees growing along a tiny creek
Surrounded with rolling hills and fertile farmland,
Christian bought 480 acres of untilled land
Upon which he built a log cabin and began to farm.
Here, with his parents, Carl and Catherine,
Later with his wife, Minnie, and their children,
Began the legacy of the Henneberg heritage
      On Possum Hollow Road
      In Lone Tree Township.
Two miles to the west of that first log cabin home,
Nestled atop a rolling prairie hill,
Covered with native grasses and wildflowers,
Is another small, serene resting spot
Much like that of Home Cemetery.
      Wheaton Congregational Cemetery
      On Highway 16.

Used throughout the century for kinfolk,
It is here I find my grandpa and grandma,
Louis W. and Esther Leota Force Henneberg
And a baby niece, Sarah Lynne Henneberg.

The generational ties weave to now,
The end of the twentieth century.
Carl and Catherine Henneberg
Son Christian married Minnie Teske.
Built a Rock House beside the tiny log cabin
And raised his family in the valley of Mill Creek.
      Maria Louisa Schultz married William Fischer
      Emil Henneberg married Lizzie Scheel
      Otto Henneberg married Mamie Tunison
      Minnie Henneberg married Albert Brunkow
      Theresa and Gustaf died in infancy.

Son Charles “Carl” married Elizabeth Weber.
To this family was born Emma Louise
Later to marry Ernest Kolterman.
Carl died and Elizabeth married John Schneider.
Son Ernest married Susanna while still in Germany,
To bury her “in a burial spot without a name”.
Upon arriving in Kansas, she died of typhoid fever.
Ernest went to Colorado perhaps with his children:
      Lena Henneberg married August Ristow.
      Amelia Henneberg married Otto Boster.
      Louisa Henneberg married Fred Falk.

To where all these generations have gone,
      We know not.
We are scattered and diverse in our lifestyles
Yet, are we any more scattered than our early German kinfolk
As they struggled with living in a country of distress,
Coming to the decision to leave a beloved homeland
For an uncertain foreign land?
What brought them from the Henneberg Castle
Nestled in a German valley surrounded by farmland?
And, are we anymore diverse in our lifestyles
Than the people our ancestors have assimilated into family?

Yet, the Henneberg generations are blessed
With knowing an abundance of grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins,
Cousins-once-removed, known as friends and neighbors:
Koltermans, Teskes, Brunkows, and Fischers,
Bosses, Bergs, Kufahls, Taylors, Forces, and Tunisons.
Just to name a few...
Sustained thoughout hardships and difficulties
By laughter and a sense of humor,
By commitment to family life and hard work,
And by a faithfulness to an Everlasting God.
We look to continuing the Henneberg Heritage.

            By Deborah Kay Henneberg Berges
            July 4, 1999
            Onaga, Kansas

The memorial plaque reads as follows:
SW 1/4 OF SW 1/4 E OF ROAD 30-06-11

Copyright © Deborah K Berges, 1999 (reprinted with permission)

Copyright © 1994 - 2007 The Kansas Collection (KanColl)   All rights reserved