Family History - Dean Grenz - Back 

Chapter I

This history begins in the not too distant past with our two sets of grandparents. Rheinhart Bauer and Pauline Pfeifer were married December 26, 1916; the day after Christmas, in the middle of a holiday season, a winter wedding in North Dakota, snow and cold outside, cozy, festive inside, Christmas trees still up. Fredrick and Christina Grenz had been married for nearly 13 years already, seven of their nine children had been born. Their wedding had been held in the spring, in May 1903. Lilacs were in bloom, the wheat was up, gardens had been planted, and days were warm.

The Bauers lived on a farm three and one half miles west of Zeeland, North Dakota. (We made a visit to the old farm in 1983, our children were young. The land belongs now to a larger farm. The house and one shed was still standing. We had to crawl under a fence, walk through a field to get to the old two-story house. The pond had been drained. Hay was growing all around the house, windows were broken, and Plaster littered the floor. We climbed the stairs, looked out the windows. A festive spirit filled the air. Cousins were with us. We’d returned to North Dakota to attend a family reunion. Were we trespassing on someone else’s property, or had we alerted the current legal guardians of the land of our intent. I don’t recall, it seemed that property rights didn’t really apply. We were simply walking into the past where memories were stirred even though the landscape had been altered.)

The Grenzes lived on a farm two miles East of Napoleon, North Dakota. (That farm is no longer in the family. I, with my daughter and her children made a recent visit to that farm as well. A modern home has been erected and trees have grown tall, we walked in a pasture to a windmill used to bring water to cattle. Old farm machinery still littered the yard on what had been my uncle’s farm. I love the wind. And we visited the old town house, now a museum west of town, and watched the pelicans at the lake. It was like being in a foreign country so far as the interaction with people was concerned, but we were spies who did know the lay of the land, once upon a time we’d walked those streets, climbed those trees, now giants.)

Rheinhart was born Jan 31, 1891. Pauline was born October 11, 1896.

Rheinhart and Pauline had eight children:



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