The 2014 family reunion season has come to a close for us. The Miller and the Schumm reunions were held back-to-back, one weekend after the other, making for a busy but memorable time.
The Schumm reunion goes back much farther and encompasses more relatives than the Miller gathering. The Schumm reunion is for the descendants of John Georg Schumm and his five children who immigrated in 1833. And there are thousands who descend from them.
The Miller reunion, on the other hand, is for the descendants of my Miller grandparents and consists of my aunts and uncles and cousins. Below is a rundown of both reunions.
An estimated 225+ relatives attended the Schumm reunion last Sunday and most were able to sit under the shade of the pavilion, located near Zion Lutheran Church.
The Lutheran Men of Song provided the afternoon entertainment. They were great!
How often do you attend a reunion where not one, but two people over 100 years old are also in attendance? Both Velma Schumm (100) and Karl Schumm (almost 101) were there and they both sang for those gathered.
Karl stood up and sang Baptized Into Thy Name Most Holy, singing in German. This was his Confirmation hymn and he was right when he said that we would not understand what he was singing. At least I couldn’t!
At the conclusion of the reunion Velma joined the Schumm Singers as they sang Blest Be the Tie That Binds.
I met some Schumm cousins, who are also Schinnerer cousins. Karen traveled from Illinois and her sister Sue from Michigan. They won prizes for being first-time attendees.
Other prizes were given to Karl and Isabelle Schumm, married the longest (76 years); Miriam Hofmann and Vince Muntzinger, both over 90 years old; Loren & Linda Meyer, traveled the farthest (from Iowa).
Name tags indicated from which of the five Schumm immigrant children relatives descend–Katherina, Martin, Friedrich, Jacob, or Ludwig. Attendance was pretty much a tie between the descendants of Friedrich and the descendants of Ludwig. Unfortunately, none of Jacob’s descendants were there. It is interesting that some people had two [sometime three!] stickers on their name tags, indicating descent from two [or three] Schumm immigrants. We had two stickers on our name tags, even though we descend only from Ludwig. I’ll just let you think about that and see if you can figure it out yourself.
The next Schumm reunion will be Sunday, 7 August 2016.
About 55 attended the Miller reunion this year, held the last weekend in July. This reunion has turned into a three-day event that revolves around visiting and reminiscing and eating. It all begins on Friday afternoon, when the out-of-state relatives begin to arrive. Groups of us meet to eat on Friday and Saturday nights and the main reunion is held on Sunday, in Berne. This year we had an all-time record number at the Chatt Bar on Saturday night. About two dozen Miller relatives filled up their main area.
It is always good to see everyone and catch up on the latest news
We also enjoy looking through old photos. Aunt Ruth, 94, can identify nearly everyone on the old photos.
Leah, the family gymnast, provided some entertainment in the afternoon.
Next year’s Miller reunion will be held the last weekend in July.
Family reunions are all about memories, fellowship, catching up on news, meeting new relatives, photos, reminiscing, renewing acquaintances, and….food. And I can’t wait to do it all over again.