Van Leeuwen – Weenig Wedding

Christiaan Frederik and Everdina Kamphuis Weenig are pleased to announce the marriage of their daughter Elsebina Maria Catharina Weenig to Gerrit van Leeuwen, son of the late Hendrik and late Maria Elizabeth Catharina de Kok van Leeuwen.  Gerrit and Elsebina were married 22 August 1849 in Leiden, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands.

We really do not know a whole lot about this couple.  The only reason I am really writing this entry is not because we have a history, but because we do have photos of these two individuals!  I will give what little we know and make the photos available.

Gerrit likely met his future wife Elsebina through her brother Christiaan Frederik Everdinus Weenig.  Gerrit van Leeuwen and Christiaan Frederik Everdinus Weenig were the same age and had gone into business together as early as 1846 building and selling organs and pianos. Elsebina’s father Christiaan Frederik Weenig was the organist at the Waalse Kerk in Leiden.

Gerrit was a organ builder by trade.  He traveled building and installing large pipe organs in churches and cathedrals in Netherlands and other locations throughout Europe.  Apparently he also played the piano, organ, and accordion.  We really know nothing of their lives, personalities, or characteristics.

Gerrit van Leeuwen was born the 6th of 8 children to Hendrik van Leeuwen and Maria Elizabeth Catharina de Kok on 12 April 1823 in Leiden.  Here is the only picture I am aware that exists of him.  He is obviously quite a bit older and I have no clue what book he is holding, perhaps the Bible?

Elsebina Maria Catharina Weenig was born 4th of 5 children to Christiaan Frederik Weenig and Everdina Kamphuis on 15 November 1826 in Leiden. Elsebina was a seamstress. While living in Leiden in the early years of her marriage she designed, manufactured, and sold hats.  Of interest, Elsebina was the granddaughter of Jacobus Kamphuis, an acclaimed silversmith in Leiden.  Here is a link to some of his pieces that have sold on Christie’s.  Bisquit Boxes, Spoons and Forks, Salt Cellars, Bisquit Box, and Fish Slice.  The family cannot have been hurting too bad for cash with a profession like that.  At any rate, here is the only photo we have of Elsebina.

Gerrit and Elsebina would have 9 children born to them.  Two would die as children and we have records of 6 of those marrying.

Maria Everdina van Leeuwen was born 14 July 1850 in Leiden and died 23 May 1919 in Arnhem, Gelderland, Netherlands.  She married Hendrik Jansen 19 February 1873 in Arnhem.

Christina Elsebina van Leeuwen was born 31 May 1852 in Leiden and died 4 January 1914 probably in Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina.  She married Frans Homkes 22 August 1874 in Oldenzaal, Overijssel, Netherlands.

Elsebina Jacoba van Leeuwen was born 21 April 1854 in Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands and died 17 November 1933 in Arnhem.  She married Dirk Potharst 24 July 1878 in Arnhem.

Gerhardus Hendrik van Leeuwen was born 16 October 1856 in Oldenzaal and died 5 January 1932 in Provo, Utah, Utah.  He married Hermina Janzen 31 March 1880 in Arnhem.  I have written of their family at this link: Van Leewen – Janzen Wedding.

Hendrik Christiaan van Leeuwen was born 1 December 1859 in Oldenzaal and died 4 May 1904 in Arnhem.  We do not have a record of a marriage for him.  He served in the military and appears to have died unmarried.

Everdina van Leeuwen was born 15 May 1862 in Oldenzaal and died 16 February 1863 in Oldenzaal.

Everdina Johanna van Leeuwen was born 27 October 1864 in Oldenzaal.  We do not have a death date or marriage for her.  Apparently she married Jan Hendrik Stros from her father’s probate probate record.  We have more research to do.

Johanna van Leeuwen was born 1 September 1867 in Oldenzaal and died 24 February 1963 in Long Beach, Los Angeles, California.  She was buried 27th February 1963 in Inglewood, Los Angeles, California.  She married Pieter Willem te Groen 5 March 1890 in Arnhem.  This family lived in Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa and then moved to Annapolis, Anne Arundel, Maryland, before eventually moving to California.

The last child, a boy, was not named as far as we can tell.  He was born 1 October 1870 in Oldenzaal and died the same day.

Elsebina died 22 March 1884 in Arnhem.  Someone in the family made a ‘hair art’ portrait of her tombstone wherever it is/was located.  Here is a photograph taken in 1960′s of the portrait (I am hoping to get an updated photograph of it from its present owner).

The family must not have been hurting too badly to be able to afford a tombstone such as the one in the picture.

Gerrit passed away 19 February 1906 in Arnhem.

Unfortunately, the story ends there.  Maybe someday we will know more about this family or some of the other Weenig, Kamphuis, or Van Leeuwen cousins.

Jennie Ann Bremer Britzman

I know you are all clamoring for an update.  Here are a few interesting items. 

In some solemn news Aunt Jennie passed away on Sunday.  I don’t know why she was referred to as Aunt Jennie.  She was my Grandma Ross’ first cousin.  Jennie Ann Bremer was born in Ogden on 18 October 1916.  She was born to Frederick William Bremer and Jantje (Jane) Van Leeuwen.  Jantje was my Great Grandmother’s (Berendena ‘Dena’ Van Leeuwen.  Her family moved to Bellflower (Long Beach) California about 1925.  Jennie married an actor in 1933 by the name of Harry Heiser.  He was from Delaware originally.  They were divorced after only a year or two.  Jennie made it sound like the times were hard and the stress made him unbearable.  She then married William Doughtie in 1938 in LA.  This too was a short marriage.  I honestly cannot remember if Harry or William was the actor now.  I am pretty sure it was Harry.  In 1953 she married Robert Floyd Britzman.  They had two children, only one of which lived to adulthood.  Richard was living and taking care of Jennie the past few years.  Robert died in 1967.  I am not entirely sure what Robert did but he left Jennie with a nice endowment for the remainder of her life.  She remarried Harold Ross (my Grandpa’s brother) about 1976 but that marriage very quickly ended.  It was annulled it was so quick.  There is a whole story to go along with that but I won’t pursue it here.  Jennie traveled extensively throughout the world.  She had stories from Rome to the Great Wall of China.  She lived to the ripe age of 91.  I often visited Jennie in her house in Washington Terrace.  We would take lunch down at a little hole in the wall mexican restaurant on 24th Street.  The last time I saw Jennie was the 23rd of February when we went to lunch with Betty Donaldson after her endowment.  I will miss her and her laugh until we meet again.  I have placed Jennie’s three photos to the front of the Van Leeuwen Family Album.  The store her father ran in Southern California as well as pictures of her parents are right after.

Amanda and I attended ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ put on by the local Jewel Box Theatre here in Oklahoma City.  We were very pleased with the value for our money.  We both purchased tickets with our student passes and found it was a theater in the round.  For the most part it was very spartan in props other than what the actors carried on their person.  Regardless, they did very well.  The singers became noticeably weaker as the show went on.  It started out so energetically but ended a bit sluggish.  This was one of their last performances after a couple of weeks.  I remember well the days of trying to coax the voice to perform just a little more after weeks of performances.  It can be a tiresome schedule.  However, my experience was the closer you got to the end the more in the groove you found yourself.  Awkwardness gave to energy and excitement.  I am disappointed the night before their last show it seemed to end in such a way.  It is a church run theater in their 51st year.  It must be handed to them for their diligence and tenacity.

Last night we had dinner with Dan and Liesel Martin.  Of course their beautiful 11 month old daughter Linea joined us.  He made us a meal he had the first night of his mission in Pennsylvania.  Potatoes and chicken gravy on waffles!  It was very good.  I thought it would taste a bit like having it on bread or Yorkshire Puddings.  It did.  It is one of those meals that give you a happy tummy.  We played Cranium afterward.  We did not win but I did feel a little smarter after successfully answering a couple of the questions.

I received a message from Victor Wayment on Sunday.  I had sent him a picture from the day my Grandpa went to the draft board at Camp Douglas.  Victor was able to tell me the picture was taken on 16 Oct 1942.  How he knew that, I haven’t a clue.  He was able to name 5 of the 7 individuals in the photo.  One of the two Grandpa could not name he put a name with and even gave me the contact information for Kenneth Barrow.  One of the two he could not name was one Grandpa could not name.  That hole still remains.  However, he named one of the other individuals differently.  Who Grandpa thought was Jim Jardine Victor named as Glen Geilman.  It just happens that Glenn Geilmann married Evelyn Van Leeuwen, another first cousin of my Grandma Ross.  I called and visited with Glen and he certainly remembers going with Grandpa and Victor to Camp Floyd.  He also thought Jim Jardine was there.  Perhaps Jim is the unknown.  I haven’t a clue.  At any rate, I am also sending a picture to Glen as well and Kenneth Barrow.  Hopefully they can name the unknown and clarify Jim Jardine/Glen Geilman.

Lastly, today is my sister’s birthday.  Happy Birthday Andra Ross!!  She e-mailed me today telling me about moving into their new home in Rupert.  I guess they have done quite a bit of work on it and it is coming alone nicely.  As with any other project, there is plenty more to do.

Well, I have to sign off.  More homework to complete.  I want to be sure to make it to bed with plenty of time to be rested up for the Constitution’s Birthday tomorrow.  Happy Birthday!!  Oh, it happens to be my birthday as well.  Happy Birthday Paul Ross!!  Amanda and I are going out to eat on Friday night since law school isn’t very conducive to large, long dinners on a school night.  Thanks for the birthday cards!