|Frantisek and Johanna (Jezek) Migl with their children, including my great grandmother,|
Theresa, far right in the middle row.
Sure enough, I came home and pulled out my genealogy stuff and they were my great great grandparents. They came to Texas in 1874 with their four youngest children, including my grandfather's mother, Theresa, who was two years old at the time. Johanna and Frantisek built the house now at the TCHCC in 1890, the year Theresa married my great grandfather, Alois Kallus. You can read a little history of the house on the TCHCC website here.
I had been to the TCHCC several times, but had never gone into the Migl house, not understanding my connection to it. Since I was traveling to Praha for the Migl reunion, I decided to take my teenage son on a small detour to soak up some family history. See me above in front of the house. I am so excited to have this real place to take the boys to that is now a part of Texas history.
|My great grandparents, Theresa (Migl) and A.J. Kallus.|
My great great grandparents are buried in Praha, and the family has its reunion there in the hall of St. Mary's Church of the Assumption. But it's not just any reunion. There were around 300 people at the bi-annual event last Saturday, but that's only 5% of the 6,126 direct descendants (and their spouses) of Frantisek and Johanna recorded by the family historian. In fact, if you are the descendant of any Migl in Texas, you are related to any other descendant of a Migl.
|Family members looking through the voluminous genealogy information|
collected by family historian, Cecilia Forrest.
|The youngest Migl at the reunion.|
One of the day's highlights was accordion music, and by all women. Family member Beverly Garcia organized live music throughout the day, played by her, cousin Rose Forbrich, and friend Edith Knuepper. Beverly suggested the theme of music for the day, since so many Migls and thier descendants have been musicians. She brought along a poster honoring the ones she knew about including the great bandleader Jimmy Brosch. This year, Jimmy is posthumously receiving the Texas Czech Heritage Society's Blaha-Hejil Memorial Award "for all he did to promote Czech heritage in Texas." Thank you to Beverly for bringing many wonderful Migl family musicians to everyone's attention.
Besides enjoying the food, music and company, the family "meeting" allowed people to mention births, deaths and marriages that had happened in the last two years. Some asked for prayers for a relative going through an illness or difficult time. We recognized the longest marriage (67 years) and newest (6 months). We got a report on the state of the Migl house, 125 years old this year, and we pondered the state of our great great grandparents grave markers in the cemetery we could see out the window of the hall where we were celebrating life and family. Everyone's enthusiasm for being together and continuing the reunion tradition was electric.
Another cousin, Dwayne Pingenot, who wrote a history of his own Migl great grandparents (our great grandmothers were sisters), wrote this in his essay, "Our Migl ancestry is one in which we can all be proud and may we and our children profit from the efforts, sacrifices, wisdom and contributions that are now a part of our heritage." I was proud of that ancestry that day, happy to connect with family cum friends, and to be able to say...