October 3, 2013: A Little Family History

I asked my mom if I could share an old family picture and accompanying note that she had shared with me. Mom is our family historian extraordinaire. Her attention to detail and CSI skills on unearthing an unfamiliar face in a photo or date of event is the best, bar none.

This photo of my grandmother, Mrs. Adam (Mary) Pick, and her children was taken Sept 1943 in Iowa.  Wearing the army uniform is my father, Elmer, 27 years old.

In 1922 at the age of 55 my grandfather Adam had a stroke & died leaving Grandma Pick with 11 of her 12 children still at home on the farm in Alton IA.  Elmer, my father and the youngest, was 6 years old that year. 

Catholicism runs deep in the Pick family beginning many generations ago in Germany.  In America, Grandma Pick was blessed with a brother, Fr. Henry Rolfes, two sons, four daughters and one grandson, Fr. Anthony Pick, all of whom joined the Franciscan order as priests and nuns.

Every one of Grandma Pick’s 12 children & 39 grandchildren attended Catholic schools; as adults, many settled in predominately Catholic communities. Most social activities, and there were many, revolved around church and school.

Courtesy of Mary (Pick) Wagner


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