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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Maria Luise Katharine Vienop - Mary Borchers - My Great Grandmother - Part 6

I remember borrowing a family tree binder from my Aunt in Napa which contains Vienop and Borchers information.  I may have borrowed it sometime in the 1990s.  Tucked inside is a journal of the trip that Minnie Vienop took with her father, Henry Sr., to Germany in 1925.  This is a treasure to read.  I will need to borrow it again and make a copy. 

After Minnie and Henry Sr. returned from Germany, Minnie decided to date Louie.  In June of 1926, they were married.  This is a great Reidenbach Family history story!  I hope that all of those Reidenbach children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren know about this.  I do know that at least the older grandchildren knew their grandmother, Minnie.  I even met Minnie more than once.  She was a very petite little lady.  Her sister, Mary, was too.

Once Minnie and Louie were married, they needed a place to live.  Mary and Herbert were in the process of having their home built at 1134 Willow Avenue, Napa, California.  Henry Jr. and Louie Reidenbach were the contractors for that home and in business together.  They built several homes in Napa.  When Mary and Herbert moved down the street, 1115 Willow Avenue became the home of Minnie, Louie, and Henry Sr.

When John Henry Vienop, Sr. (Henry Sr.) died in 1932 from a stroke, he left 1115 Willow Avenue to Aunt Minnie and Uncle Louie.  Minnie and Louie lived there for some time but then moved to another location that I believe was on Main Street in Napa.  That home made the newspaper a few years back when it went on the market for a fairly large sum.

Mary and Herbert Borchers lived at 1134 Willow Avenue for many years.  Herbert lived there until he passed away on November 14, 1978.  Mary lived there for almost 58 years until she sold it in April 1984.  Mary and Herbert had four children that also lived at this location with them.

I have so many fond memories of visiting my great grandparents home at 1134 Willow Avenue.  My mom spent a whole lot of time there when she was a child.  The backyard was not very large but had an old chicken coop that was no longer in use when I was young.  The property also had a detached garage for the car but also held dress up clothes and shoes for us kids.  Mary Vienop Borchers never did learn how to drive so they only had one car.

We used to spend Easter Sunday at the house, Christmas Eve, and plenty of summer days at their home.  I remember there being left over Halloween candy in the summertime that my sister and I would nibble on despite the age of the candy.  I have memories of the Christmas Eve get-togethers with the family up at the house too.  My great grandma made wonderful cookies using her old German cookie family recipes.  I have so many fond memories of Mary and Herbert Borchers and their home.

I wonder what Uncle Henry Jr. would think of 1134 Willow Avenue now.  Someone added a second story on this craftsman style home in the 1980s.  It just does not look the same. 

Mary Vienop Borchers passed away in May 1989 at the age of 96 years old.  I can still hear her laugh like a beautiful song that replays in your head.  I have many, many more memories of her and my great grandpa, Herbert Borchers.  At this point, I need to take a break for a while in writing about my Vienop Borchers Family.  I did not realize how hard that it can be to write about people I actually knew.

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