Cousin Marg has sent out the reminder!
The descendants of Jacob Emanuel and Susannah (Schluchter) Merner are gathering for the 63rd annual reunion. (Yes, you read that right – the family has been gathering annually now for 63 years!)
This year the reunion will be held at Merhaven Farms, the home of descendants Larry and Louise Merner in Zurich, Ontario on Saturday, July 11th where there will be games for all ages, swimming, a buffet potluck dinner capped off with an evening campfire. The reunion festivities kick-off at 1:00 p.m.
This family reunion draws together some of the many descendants of Jacob and Susannah who left their native Switzerland around 1837 and headed to British North America. The Merners settled on a farm in New Hamburg, Ontario, just west of present day Kitchener.
Over the years, subsequent generations moved further west, populating Oxford and Huron Counties in Ontario, eventually moving into the United States and Cedar Falls, Iowa, in particular.
Ellen and I attended the 2013 reunion and had a great time mingling and meeting new cousins. Ellen is a 3X great granddaughter of Jacob and Susannah so she had a wonderful time connecting with her previously unknown cousins. I was simply introduced as ‘The Genealogist.’
Ellen (Wagner) Hadden (centre) at the 2013 Merner Family Reunion with two of her cousins – Liz on the left and Marg on the right
My genealogy database currently holds information about almost three thousand four hundred Merner descendants. I hope that there are a good number of them that have a chance to get together on Saturday!
Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for reunion contact information.
‘Cousin Marg’ has notified me by email that the 2015 Merner Family Reunion is set to be held on Saturday, July 11th.
In addition to not being held as it has been typically on a Sunday, there is also a change of venue. In past years, the reunion has been held at the Seaforth (Ontario) Golf Club but this year the family gathering will take place at the farm of Larry and Louise Merner.
The Merner Family Reunion is a gathering of the descendants of Jacob Emanuel Merner (1789-1869) and his wife Susanna Schluchter (1787-1875). Jacob and Susanna were both natives of Switzerland who immigrated to what is now southern Ontario, Canada with eleven of their twelve known children. They are the 3X great grandparents of my wife through their daughter, Anna and her husband Jacob Staebler.
An incredibly accurate, though incomplete, genealogy of the Merner family was published in 1976 by the late Ruth Merner Connell. This Merner genealogy is available on Ancestry.com.
‘Cousin Marg’ promises more information and details on the 2015 Merner Family Reunion later but for now, those interested can hold the date.
If you blink, you just might miss the Lingelbach Cemetery, a small cemetery located just east of the village of Shakespeare, Ontario.
Last month, while en route to the Merner family reunion, I almost missed it. Of course, I wasn’t expecting to see it either.
When planning our trip to the family reunion, I knew that our route would take us through one of Ellen’s ancestral towns, New Hamburg, Ontario, and so, I allowed time for us to visit the Riverside Cemetery there (I documented this stop in a previous post). After leaving Riverside Cemetery and new Hamburg, we journeyed along; Ellen likely happy that my cemetery roving was finished and me, well, I was happy to have finally turned Riverside Cemetery into something more than a name on a record.
My “Oh My God!” exclamation caught Ellen off guard as we traveled down Highway 7/8 towards Stratford, Ontario and our eventual destination of the reunion location in Seaforth, Ontario. No, I explained, nothing was wrong but I had just seen the sign for Lingelbach Cemetery, something we definitely had to stop and explore on our trip home.
Lingelbach Cemetery is small, well maintained and is located on the corner of the highway and regional road 104, just outside the eastern boundary of Shakespeare. Like Riverside Cemetery is was just a name, albeit a bit of a strange name, that I had seen many times contained in death and burial records for some of Ellen’s ancestors. Now it was real and I had a chance to walk it’s few rows of graves, occasionally stopping to photograph the grave of a known ancestor and pay my respects to them.
Below is one of the ancestral graves found, that of Israel Eby (1850 – 1903) and his wife Mary Anne Witwer (1854 – 1932), Ellen’s first cousin, three times removed.