Monday, July 9, 2012

Minutes of the 88th Wright Reunion

Minutes of the 88th Wright Reunion, July 8th, 2012

The day started bright and sunny, with a break in the extreme heat.  We had kringle and coffee at 10:00 as people began to arrive.

Here is the attendance:

Bus and Joan Moertl

Mary, Nathan and Sam Bubenzer

Rex, JoAnne and Lisa Dachenbach

Lowell and Joanne Wright

Harry and Dianne Wright

Juddy Stubbe

Judy Bishop

Frank A. Laycock

Frank E. and Kathrine Laycock

Tabatha Feerick

Phil Atwood

Not many people, but happy and delighted to be together.  They youngest member attending was Sam Bubenzer at 17 years old, and our wisest Member was Frank Laycock at 79.

Nathan Bubenzer posted the descendant charts on the walls, also a large map of the US with stickers where we are all spread out: there are Wrights from sea to shining sea!

Rex gave thanks and we feasted on our wonderful potluck luncheon.

After lunch we had a brief family meeting.  The topic of the meeting was the future of the Wright Family Reunion.

We discussed options, such as getting together for lunch at a restaurant, continuing the potluck, meeting every other year, creating an online presence, moving away from print mail and timing of the reunion.

Here is what we determined after discussion:

1.       We will continue to meet for our reunions the second Sunday in July.

2.       We will continue to have a potluck with members contributing food.

3.       Next year we will meet again at beautiful Cedar Community, with the thought that we may go back to Columbus or elsewhere in the future.

4.       We will no longer send post cards or other paper mail.

5.       We will continue the emails and blog, plus create a facebook page for folks to stay connected. We ask that those who receive our emails, read the blog, and/or participate on the facebook page when it is up and running help out people with no email to get the information.

6.       The minutes will be sent as an email and also put on the blog.

7.       We will continue to keep meeting until there’s no one left to gather.

Our family is so precious and filled with love for each other and the history of Mary, Leslie and the twelve, that the idea of ending it was tabled.

KC Gave the treasurers report.  Since we still have money in the kitty there was no collection this year.

Rex Dachenbach was re-elected as President and Mary Bubenzer will continue as secretary, with KC Laycock handling the funds as treasurer.

With all of this decided in the meeting we all went down to the dock and had a lovely party barge boat ride on the lake.  It was beautiful and the ride really capped off the day.

Next year we will be meeting at Cedar Community on July 14th.

We hope to see you all there!

Mary Bubenzer


ps. as the year progresses please feel free to send us upates and information, we would be happy to share them with the whole group.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Snapshot: Abbie Wright Austin

Our snapshot of Abbie Wright comes to us from Gloria Karow.  Thanks, Gloria!

"Abbie Wright was born in the town of Elba Dodge County Wisconsin on December 15th 1868.  Abbie died at her home in Waterloo Wisconsin on March 21, 1927.  Insulin was discovered in {1923} but Abbie was not going to be a [guinea pig].  Abbie died a year before Gloria Abbie Austin Karow 1928.

Abbie was married to Manly H. Austin in 1890.  They lived on a farm at [Sam Hill] town of Portland, where she went as a bride until two years at the end of her life, when they moved to Waterloo Wisconsin.  Abbie and Manly had five children, Miner, Wright, May, Stanley and Vira.  May tarried a few days, and passed away.

Abbie was the youngest from a family of twelve. Leslie Wright married Mary Lowe in 1848.  Mary had 12 children in 19 years, now that’s some kind of a record.

Abbie and Manly along with many of the Wright clan are buried at the Okeeg Cemetery of Elba Dodge County Wisconsin.

The Okeeg Cemetery of Elba is a privately owned cemetery, the Association was formed in 1848, three trustees were chosen to conduct the affairs of said Association, the 3 trustees decided that the first Sunday of December in each year at 6 o’clock PM be the time of holding Annual Meeting of said Association.

The name Okeeg was the Indian name of the Crawfish River, Okeeg translated into English meant Peaceful or at peace.

Small country Cemeteries, at this time, were increasingly neglected.

A gentleman by the name of George Adams visiting from California suggested to write letters to every lot owner and everyone who has a relative buried in the cemetery for donations, then he George Adams would give a dollar for every one collected.

In 1907, with the money and help of the trustees and men of the Association, (the women) formed the OKEEG CEMETERY LADIES IMPROVEMENT SOCIETY. This group plus husbands and members of the Association are still meeting to this day. Now called the Okeeg Auxillary, we meet seven times a year at the Elba Town Hall. We have a noon potluck and always have a feast, the meeting part we’ve fixed fences had trees cut down new exit gate, we have a caretaker we pay half his wages.

We have 12 to 15 people at our meetings.  This is a far cry from the original ladies who had as many at 75 in their big country homes. Back in the early days they met on the night of the full moon so the horses and wagons and horses and buggies could find their way home.

I, Gloria ABBIE (Austin) Karow am very proud to be named after my Grandma, ABBIE."


The pictures are of Okeeg Cemetery when we (Nathan and I) drove out to find it.  It is a really lovely cemetery with many Wrights, Austins and Stofflets.  A very pretty and peaceful place. The Wright family farm was just 1/2 a mile down the road.

WELL my fellow clan members, that's it!  The end of the snapshots and I must say I am sorry to see our research end.  Thank you all for your help and interest!  Continue to send us stories, we always love to add knowledge to the clan archives.  I hope you've had as much fun reading these snapshots as we have had writing them.

A few notes:  if anyone is interested in "those Bleecker Boys" who Wright women kept marrying check out Skip Bleecker's excellent genealogical website:

We are saddened with the passing of Alberta Wright Kickbush, the daughter of Albert Wright, who died just last week.  Here is a link to her beautiful obituary:
The Reunion is two weeks from today!  Bring yourselves, your sunscreen and a dish to pass.  Here is the information once again:
Join us for the 88th Wright Family Reunion! We will be gathering at the
Cedar Community Beach House once again, 5595 County Road Z, West Bend, WI 53095

July 8th 2012 at 10:00 in the morning. We will gather, have a meal (bring
a dish to pass!) have our family business meeting and hang out together at
Beautiful Cedar Lake. You can find a map at our blog:

or if you need futher instructions feel free to contact me, Mary Bubenzer
(your secretary) at

If you are unable to come this year please send us a note via email to
share with us "doings" in your family!

Due to cost and ease of use after this year we will be sending email only,
and not the paper mailing. If you know someone who is still getting the
mailing, please encourage them to send us their email addresses.

Hope you can come in July! We'd love to see you there!


Mary Bubenzer
Wright Family Secretary

I have enjoyed being your secretary so much and will be handing over the reins to a worthy successor at the reunion.  Consider taking the post:  it is a real pleasure and I will be more than happy to show our new secretary the ropes!

With love, 
Mary Bubenzer

Monday, June 18, 2012

Snapshot: Albert Wright

Nathan and I took a little field trip to the Wisconsin Historical Society Library today to look up a biographical article about my (Mary Bubenzer’s) Great Grandfather, Albert L. Wright.  If you ever have a chance to go to the Historical Society, right down on the campus of UW Madison, I highly recommend it.  It is a beautiful beautiful stately and lavish old building. We had a location that we found on the web site for a “History of Washington County, Wisconsin.” biography. The record was on microfilm, which we viewed on what seemed to be an antique machine.  VERY old school.  It was a hoot. 

According to our notes, Albert Wright was the first Wright child born in Wisconsin, 14 October 1865.  He grew up on his father’s farm. At some point he lived in Minnesota with relatives and that is where he met and married his first wife, Jennie M. Smith (November 1889 in Fillmore, MN.) According to the biography at the Historical Society, he spent some time at a horse importation ranch in South Dakota, so he must have been with George at that time.  Jennie and Albert’s first child, Cecil or Cecile, was born in South Dakota in 1890.  While he was there he sharpened and honed his great interest in horses.  Jennie and Albert were in Minnesota for the birth of their second daughter, Lucille, in 1893.  He attended the Ontario Veterinary College where he got his DVS in 1904.  After this time Jennie, Albert, Cecil and Lucille moved back to Wisconsin where he began a veterinary practice in Columbus.  Their third child, Florence was born in 1907.  Unfortunately Jennie died in 1908 Leaving Albert a widower with three children.

In 1914 Albert Married Kathrine S. Frey, my great grandmother.  They had two children, Kathrine E. Wright Atwood, my grandmother, born June 1916 and Alberta Wright Kickbush, born June 1918, who is still with us today.  Albert died in 1935, and Kathrine Frey Wright died in April, 1954.

In the biography it said “He has a natural love for animals, an understanding knowledge of their ailments and is an expert in the treatment and healing of their diseases. His success is based upon his thorough technical knowledge and mechanical skill.”  “A Republican and always votes the party ticket.” (unlike his great granddaughter...) and “The sterling and upright qualities which he inherited from his father have been active factors in his success.” He also was a member of the “Knights of Pythias” which we assume is a fraternal organization.

Here are some memories that my Mom, Kathrine Laycock, sent to me:

“You have far more of the specifics of Albert in your computer already…..but here is my recall of what I heard of him as his granddaughter.

Albert Wright was and is my grandfather…the father of my mom, Kathrine Wright Atwood. He had the strong, stocky build and lovely mustache of many of his brothers.

He died of the heart disease that plagued so many of the Wright males and my mom could remember him popping nitroglycerine pills for many years for angina. My mom was 18 when he died; her only sibling Alberta was 16.

Albert was trained as a veterinarian in Canada as were 2 of his brothers. The Scots love their animals and he was a rural, large animal vet with his Wright's Clinic in Campbellsport, Wisconsin. He was compassionate and capable and the farmers knew they could call on Doc Wright anytime day and night. He was not a business man and often was paid in eggs and apples from the orchards and potatoes from the field. He never made much money and his relaxed attitude about money was cause of heated disagreements with Gramma.

He was a Scot in his love of music, and poetry and all things "bright and beautiful". He could sing and quote poetry - especially Bobbie Burns with the best of them.

Our gramma Kathrine was grandpa's second wife and at the Wright Reunions my mom and Aunty Bert were the youngest of the first generation past the original 12 Wright siblings. That made us direct grandchildren and I was always so proud to write on my name tag KC Atwood Granddaughter of Albert Wright!!

I never met my grandpa Albert but always felt I knew him through the clan gatherings every year.”

Monday, June 11, 2012

Snapshot: Leslie Allyn Wright

Born in 1863, Leslie Allyn Wright was the last Wright child born in Ohio.  He moved to Wisconsin with his family, and he never strayed far from home. 

Leslie married Caroline Rhodes January 10, 1893.  They lived in Columbus, where he had a veterinary practice, following the Wright preferred profession!  Caroline and Leslie had two children,  Allyn Lee born in 1894, and Elizabeth, born in 1906. 

Leslie died in 1930, and Caroline moved to Minnesota to live with her son Allyn, a banker, and his family.  She died in 1958 at the ripe age of 86, outliving both of her children.

Just two Wright kiddos left!  Next week we will visit Albert Wright (from whom I am descended).  Send any info!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Snapshot: Alexander H. Wright

Alexander H. Wright was born in Medina County Ohio in 1862. He was only a couple of years old when the family moved to Wisconsin, the first of many moves for Alex.

He spent some time in Canada at the Ontario Veterinary College (now part of the University of Guelph, near Toronto), Graduating in 1895. His name shows up in the Journal of Comparative Medicine and Veterinary Archives from that year in the listing of graduates at the 26th annual commencement on March 29th. It also mentions that he earned honors in pathology and anatomy. We believe he might be pictured in the photo of graduates on the OVC web site. See if you can find him. It is the sixth photograph in the queue at the bottom (sepia colored).

After graduation, he married Hattie May Loomis on December 29, 1897 in Columbia County Wisconsin. In the 1905 Wisconsin census the couple is living in Lake Mills and Alex is working as a veterinary surgeon. In 1910 they are in Appleton, now with a one year old son, Philip.

Sometime after 1913 and before 1920 the family, now with sons Philip and Robert, moves to Gresham, Oregon, near Portland. We can surmise this because he is listed in the Neenah-Menasha Telephone Directory in 1913 as living at 622 Union in Appleton with an office at 625 Morrison. They have a farm in Gresham, and it is here that Alex lives the rest of his days, passing away on November 11, 1935 at the age of 73. May, as she is listed in many of the census records, lives another 15 years, dying in 1950.

On a side note, you may recall from the Snapshot of May Wright Bleecker last week that she and her children were also in Appleton at about that same time as Alex and his family. May Wright Bleecker’s son Leslie was also a veterinary surgeon, and he is also listed in the 1913 telephone directory. His office was at 203 Main Street in Neenah, with his home at 312 Commercial in Neenah.

Next week: Leslie Allyn Wright. As always, please send us any news or information you have for Leslie Allyn, or any of the 12. We hope you are enjoying these snapshots, and maybe learning a little more about the family.

Once again: Join us for the 88th Wright Family Reunion! We will be gathering at the Cedar Community Beach House, (5595 County Road Z, West Bend, WI 53095) July 8th 2012 at 10:00 in the morning. We will gather, have a meal (bring a dish to pass!) have our family business meeting and hang out together at Beautiful Cedar Lake. You can find a map at our blog from the April 4th post. We have received a few emails to share. If you have news you want passed along at the reunion, you can email it to us at

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Snapshot: May Wright Bleecker

Like with Jessie last week,  we really don’t have much other than dates for May Wright Bleecker.  May was born in 1858 in Medina County, Ohio.  

She married Harrie O. Bleecker on  November 8th, 1883 in Dodge County.  Harrie died just six years later in 1889.

The 1900 census finds May in Waterloo, Jefferson County Wisconsin a widow with three children: Vera, who was 15, Leslie at 14 and Harry at 11 years old.  All of the children are listed in school, and May is listed as a landowner for occupation. 

In 1910 May and her children are living in Appleton, Outagamie County Wisconsin, with her three children still living with her.  Leslie, now 24 years old, is listed as a veterinary surgeon, following the profession of so many in the Wright family.

In 1930 May, at that time 71 years old, is living with her 61 year old sister-in-law in West Covina, Los Angeles County California.  One can only speculate how she ended up out there!

May died in 1942.

Next week we visit Alexander Wright!  As ever, please send us any info you have.

By the way, since our first snapshot on April 14th we have had over 540 page views for our little blog here!  Thanks to all of you!

Don't forget: Join us for the 88th Wright Family Reunion! We will be gathering at the
Cedar Community Beach House once again, (5595 County Road Z, West Bend, WI 53095) July 8th 2012 at 10:00 in the morning. We will gather, have a meal (bring a dish to pass!) have our family business meeting and hang out together at Beautiful Cedar Lake. You can find a map at our blog from the April 4th post.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Snapshot: Jessie Wright

Unfortunately we don't have much information on Jessie Wright.  What we have we found mainly on using census records, and using the Wisconsin State Historical Society to find the marriage details. On their site ( )they have a whole section on genealogy, including an index of pre-1907 birth, death, and marriage records for the state of Wisconsin.

Jessie Wright was born in Medina County, Ohio in 1857.
She married Edmund Newton , a veterinarian surgeon, on September 9th 1884 in Columbia County Wisconsin.  They lived in Waupun in Fond Du Lac County Wisconsin. 
Jessie and Edmund had three children, Leslie Louis born 1886, Harry W. born 1888, and Marjorie born 1897.
Jessie died in 1929, two years after Edmund.

Next week: May Wright! Send us any stories or information you may have about May or any of the 12 children.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Snapshot: William Wright

Our snapshot this week is mostly from John Stofflet, thanks John!  Nathan and I added a few details, which we bracketed.

“William Wright was the 5th born child of Leslie and Mary Wright, and the first of their children not born in Scotland, but in the U.S.A.  [in 1855]. In an article written about Leslie and Mary's 50th anniversary,  William is described as a "Buckeye", being born in Ohio [Medina County].    He migrated with his parents to Wisconsin via "prairie schooner" in 1865.

William Wright married Lena Rogers in 1881. [Lena was born in 1859 in Wisconsin. Her father, Lafayette Rogers,  was listed as a deputy sherriff  in Dodge County according to the 1870 census. He had also worked as a cooper in 1850, as a miller in 1860; In 1880 he was listed as a farmer. Lena’s  mother’s name was Maria. They had four children who were born in Ohio, and at least two more that were born in Wisconsin, including Lena]   William Wright and Lena Rogers had six children: Angie, Elva, Donald, Harold, Eula, and Marshall. 

There is a wonderful photograph of William, sporting his thick mustache, in Eula's scrapbook.  It was taken with his siblings and parents in front of the family farmhouse on the occasion of Leslie and Mary's  50th wedding anniversary.   There is another great photo of William and his brothers wearing winter coats made of fur, which appears to have possibly been taken the same day. 

We have not found other  written accounts of William, and don't recall many anecdotal references about him handed down from his children.  But we know that he farmed on the family farm in Elba.  In a letter written in Danville by his father Leslie in 1901, Leslie describes "Will's" work in the woods that winter as follows:  "Will has just commenced hauling wood.  Can't get into our woods any more with a wagon with any satisfaction, the way we used to go. It is all cleared off, plowed up and wire fences all over.  What is hauled has been on the river.  He can come right out of the woods on to the river and up opposite the house and then come across the lot.  It is a little farther that way, but when you get on to the river you have nothing to do but push on the lines.  The load is nothing.  We have been better off for wood than at one time expected.  We had nothing but green wood all winter.  Where he got it is 'more than I know', but he has got a lot of nice white ash, which I am sure never grew in our woods but it burns just as good as if it were our own."

William died in 1922 "on the old home farm".  We recall anecdotal mentions from Eula of her father having "stomach cancer".   He is buried in Dodge County's O'Keeg Cemetery in Danville, next to wife, Lena and daughter, Eula...just a short distance from the family farm on Ninabuck Road.”

Next week we will visit with Jessie Wright!  As ever, any information is gratefully received! Send your memories to And we would love memories and details about any of the 12.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Mary Elizabeth Bleecker Mystery Update

Herb Ely sent an email with a clue to the mystery of where Mary Elizabeth Bleecker was for a few years between 1900 and 1905. He passes along that he has "a Graduation Picture of my Grandmother, Mary Elizabeth Bleecker upon her Graduation from the School of Agriculture, University of Minnesota, 1905. If we are talking about the same person, it looks like she was "off to college". I wish I knew more than that."

 Our thanks to Herb for the information.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Snapshot: George L. Wright

Our thanks to Harry Wright for providing this snapshot of his grandfather, George Wright.

“Grandfather George L. Wright born in Scotland  IN 1852, came with his parents in 1854, and grew up in Wisconsin  and worked around Southern Minnesota near Taopi, MN. I can’t document this accurately but it was understood he worked with the railroad as a depot agent as a young man or as a farm hand. It does appear that other members of his family were making their roots in southern MN near Austin and West Concord, MN. While working in the area of Taopi, in southern MN, he met my Grandmother. My Grandmother, Ida Allman, was a school teacher in the area. Later she taught in Owatonna and Le Sueur. Her Father was a merchant in Taopi, MN and Cresco, IA His name was Christian Allman and is buried in the New Organ Cemetery South of Cresco. Her mother’s name was Elizabeth Ann (Lowry) Alleman

In the mid 1880’s my grandfather and two other gentlemen, Ed Bradbury and Theo Davis continued West to South Dakota where he developed a Horse Ranch called the “La Belle Ranch Horse Import Co”, or La Belle Ranch. The Ranch was located 3 miles north of Winfred, SD, in Lake County, West of Madison, SD. He acquired the first 160 acres as homestead, and then through land grants acquired over 1600 acres that he managed. Because of friends and associates in England and Scotland, he had contacts. Remember the West was being settled by immigrants moving west to acquire new land. There was a need for good registered work horses to do farm work as the immigration westward of ranchers was growing. My grandfather imported those horses from Scotland and sold them at their ranch. The ranch was successful from the late 1880 to the late 1890’s. My grandfather also started a bank in Winfred, SD and donated land for a Church.

During this time he continued his relationship with my Grandmother. They were married later on September 30, 1886. They went back to Scotland for their honeymoon and then continued to live on the La Belle Ranch. During their trip back to Scotland they contacted Scottish Farmers willing to export their work horses for sale at LaBelle Ranch in SD. They incorporated with Bradbury as president, Davis as Vice President and my Grandfather as Secretary. Because of their contacts in Scotland and England, they were able to import registered work horses from Scotland & England and have them shipped to Chicago where other associates would bring the horses by train to Winfred for sale on their ranch. It was a big business at that time as the west was being settled and good horses were needed to work the land. While those associates waited for the sale date, they would hunt and fish on the acreage.  Prior to that, oxen or wild horses would be used for working the land. The imported horses were already trained for the work that they would do and farmers paid good money for good work horses.

Building the extensive horse importing and breeding ranch was not an easy task. Lumber for the four large barns, a large frame house, a bunkhouse, a granary with a windmill on top, and out buildings were hauled by wagons and teams from Luverne and Pipestone, Minnesota, the nearest railroad centers. A second house was built for my Grandfather and his family on top of the hill southeast of the ranch.  The main barn was put up in and is still standing. The stone masons were paid $2.25 a day, and the carpenters were paid $2.00 a day. The common laborers who hauled the rocks really did all the heavy labor were paid $.25 a day.

At one time there were four long horse barns with round windows and cupolas. It was the showplace of Lake County, Dakota Territory. At one time 22 hired men and two cooks worked on the ranch. A large square show ring was located near the barns where horsemen from Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Nebraska, Iowa Minnesota and Yorkshire England viewed the imported mares and sires.  Names like Voltaire, Blue Bell, Lady Ebony, Sir Williford, and Crausford Duke made up the inventory. At one time $30,400 was the listed value of horses and mares and $9000 in grade horses and colts. Business was good with the influx of homesteaders and their need of horses.

The story goes that due to good living, hard times, poor management, and low market for horses in the late 1890’s, they were forced to sell.  They gave the hired men horses of their choice and thanked them for their faithfulness. Richard Westall from Minnesota purchased the ranch and stocked it with cattle instead of horses. As the years slipped by, most of the homesteads had been sold and the farmers needed more and better machinery.  My father Leslie’s brother, George and Sisters Jean and Elizabeth were born in South Dakota and my father was born on the farm in West Concord. They also lost an infant son at birth while at the ranch. 

In 1901 the family moved to West Concord, MN and purchased a 280 acre farm 2 miles east of town. West Concord as many small towns at that time was beginning to grow as an agricultural area.  Immigrants were being drawn to the mid-west as new farm land was being developed. The early years were hard as they settled into new areas. Merchants were starting new businesses to furnish settlers with the necessary needs. When the railroad came through, the route they selected was two miles west of Concord. As the area became progressive merchants realized that they needed the railroad to access excellent draining during other growing communities.  The year was 1885 when merchants decided to move their stores to the west and a new community was known as West Concord was developed. Our farm was located half way between Concord and West Concord. The original road was an unimproved trail that ran through the farm between the house and barn.  Silver Creek ran through the farm which made for wet seasons. Grandfather grew sugar beets at that time and Mexican migrants worked for him in the farming program. 

My Grandfather’s life is somewhat clouded with stories of good and not so good. My Grandfather was accustomed to good living and always had the best of the best in spite of the lack of finances. Bad times were not mentioned during my growing up on the farm. The farm at that time was known as the “Walnut Park Farm”, as a grove of Walnut Trees graced the homestead. My Grandfather also planted a row of Maple trees on the east side of the house. Those trees were nearly destroyed in the early 1920’s when the advent of automobiles required that a road be built between Concord and West Concord. The road construction engineer wanted to remove the trees for a right of way for the road. My Grandfather refused and stood in the front lawn with a shot gun to prevent any removal of the trees. The engineer told my Grandfather that they wouldn’t take the trees, but they would need to remove the dirt next to the trees to create a ditch, and told my Grandfather that nature would take the trees anyway due to the lack of root development on one side. It would be another 40 years before the road would be changed again and the dirt replaced. My father wished his father would have been alive to see this.   It was a show place that my Grandfather was proud of wanting the best of the best and made sure that when modern convenience came about like electricity, he wired the house, put in running water and indoor facilities.“

Harry has written more about his family, and has family photos to share that we will try to find a way to make it available to the clan. Once more thank you Harry for this great snapshot. Next week is William Wright.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Snapshot: Elizabeth (aka Eliza or Lizzie) Wright Bleecker

Elizabeth, who was Leslie and Mary Ann’s third child was born in Scotland in 1852.  She came to America with the family in 1854 and eventually settled in Elba, Wisconsin. 

On 23 November  1877, Elizabeth married John R. Bleecker in Dodge County.  John had a Canadian father and his mother was from New Hampshire.   Elizabeth and George had five children; Mary Eliza (1880-1946), William L. (1881-1938), Dean E. (1884-1941), Lulu(1889-1966), and George (1890-1949).  In 1895 the family was living in Waterloo Wisconsin.  In 1900 they lived in Portland Township Wisconsin, and in 1910 they lived in Concord Minnesota. By 1917 they were back in Wisconsin; they really moved around!  In 1920 John and Lulu were back in Waterloo.  Lulu was 30 at this time. None of the other kids are there, perhaps they stayed in Minnesota.

Elizabeth died in 1917, and is buried in Waterloo City Cemetery.

In 1922 John married his second wife, Clara, and they moved out to California.  John died in California in 1937.  He has a marker at Waterloo City Cemetery.

One interesting mystery we found; in 1895 Mary Eliza was with the family, in 1900 she was not with them, and then in 1905 in Minnesota she was back with the family.  Where was Mary from 1900 to sometime before 1905?

Stay tuned!  Next week belongs to George L. Wright.  If any descendants of George are out there and have information about him we would love to have it. Also, if you have any information on any of the folks we already did a snapshot of, feel free to send it to us!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Snapshot: Mary Wright Bleecker Randall

Snapshot: Mary A. Wright Bleecker Randall

Mary A. Wright was born in Scotland in 1849, the oldest child of Leslie and Mary Ann Wright. She travelled with them across the Atlantic to settle in Ohio, then moved with them to Wisconsin.

Mary Wright married her first husband, Henry Bleecker in Columbia County Wisconsin. We don’t know when Henry was born, but he died in the year 1874, the same year that their daughter, Nellie, was born. We assume that Mary and Nellie lived with her folks until 1880 when she married Eugene A. Randall.

Eugene was born 1851 in Dodge C. Wisconsin. He enlisted in the US Army and was stationed
during the 1870’s at Fort Sanders, Albany, Wyoming Territory, 4th Infantry Company C. He married Mary sometime shortly before the 1880 census. Mary is on the 1880 census as Mary Randall, living with Leslie and Mary Ann, along with Nellie. We think maybe Eugene was out sussing out a place to live during that year, and they settled in Hetland Township, Kingsbury County, South Dakota. Mary and Eugene had six kids, George, Jessie, L. Maud, Mary, Amos, and Lizzie.

Mary died in 1933 in Hetland Township, Kingsbury County, South Dakota. She is buried in Hetland Cemetery.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Snapshot: Leslie and Mary Ann, Jeannie, and Charles Wright

Leslie and Mary Ann, Jeannie and Charles Wright

The Wright family has roots in Old Rayne, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. The children of James and Elizabeth (Hay) Wright were christened in St. Nicholas Church near Old Rayne and the family births marriages, and deaths are recorded in the Old Parish registers. Wright family graves still exist in the Kirkyard. One of James and Elizabeth's children was Leslie Wright. Here is a small exerpt of how Leslie got his name:

Copied from the back of a postcard showing Leslie Castle c.1900 - brought to
the Wright Family Reunion 2001 by Harry Wright - William Leslie, who owned this
estate, was a friend of Leslie Wright (dad's father) & it was from him the
name "Leslie" originally came. Leslie Wright was a tenant in the
estate at one time. Dad and Mother brought home a piece of slate from the roof.
It was here Dad met an old lady who remembered carrying him in her arms. She
said she wouldn't have recognized him.

On 28 Dec 1848 Leslie Wright married Mary Ann Lowe, who was born in 1825, also in Old Rayne. They had four children born in Scotland; Mary, Jeannie, Eliza, and George. Sometime between 1854 and 1855 they came to the United States and settled in Harrisville Township in the County of Medina in Ohio where Leslie made his living as a farmer. While in Ohio they had six more Children, William, Jessie, May, Charles, Alexander and Leslie. Sometime between Leslie’s birth in Ohio it 1863., and Albert’s birth in 1865 the growing family moved to Elba in Dodge County, Wisconsin. After Albert was born in Wisconsin came the couple’s last child, Abbie, also in Wisconsin. Leslie died 4 Jan 1905 one year after the death of his wife in 1904.

This paragraph, copied from the typewritten Leslie Wright obit, gives us more information about Leslie's life. "Being an early settler, he was well known and highly respected for his sterling Scotch qualities and business integrity. He was a consistent member of the Presbyterian church in
Scotland and Ohio, but when he came to Wisconsin, he united with the Methodist Episcopal church of which he was an active member until promoted to the church triumphant. A greal [sic] lover of God's word, much of which he had committed to memory, a good singer and a lover of good music, and a splendid conversationalist, his company was eagerly sought by all who knew him and his presence was always an inspiration and benediction and no words seem so fitting
to the close of such a full rounded life as the words of St. Paul: 'I have fought a good fight; I have finished my course; I have kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness.'"
Not much is known about Jeannie or Jane Wright, Leslie and Mary Ann’s second child who was born 1850 in Scotland. Tragically she died in 1866, in Wisconsin, at only 16 years of age.
Charles Wright, Leslie and Mary Ann’s 8th son had no living descendants. He was born in
1860 in Ohio. In 1889 he married Eula Snow, and they had one son, Allen Wright, who died only thirteen days after he was born. Eula died in 1917 and in 1921 Charles married his second wife, Grace Freitag. Charles lived until 1937. Grace died in 1960.

If you have any other tidbits of information about these
folks, put them in the comments are send them to

Next week: Mary Wright Bleeker

Snapshots Introduction

In our final days as your secretary and secretary's genealogist (my husband
Nathan) we have decided to do a little genealogy project for your enjoyment and
edification. Each week we will take one of the twelve and write a little
"snapshot" of each, with basic genealogical research, and, we hope, input from
you. It will be posted to our blog, .
Our first week is dedicated to Leslie and Mary Ann, the mother and father of the
twelve, and Jeannie (AKA Jane) (who died young) and Charles Wright, who had no
living descendants. If you have more information about these folks PLEASE write
them in as comments on the blog or send them to If
you send info about any of Leslie and Mary Ann's 12 children, please send it to
us before we post the "snapshot" then we can incorporate the information which
will be so much fun. So please send us stories or information about your "12"
family member! Except for Jeannie and Charles we will go in chronological
order, so the second snapshot will be Mary Wright Bleecker, then Eliza Wright Bleecker, followed by George L. Wright, William Wright, Jessie Wright Newton, May Wright Bleecker, Alexander H. Wright, Leslie Allyn Wright, Albert L. Wright, Abbie Wright Austin.

Have fun and enjoy, and we will see you in July!


Mary Bubenzer


Nathan Bubenzer
Secretary's genealogist

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

88th Reunion

Hello Wrights!

Join us for the 88th Wright Family Reunion! We will be gathering at the
Cedar Community Beach House once again, 5595 County Road Z, West Bend, WI 53095

July 8th 2012 at 10:00 in the morning. We will gather, have a meal (bring
a dish to pass!) have our family business meeting and hang out together at
Beautiful Cedar Lake. You can find a map at our blog:

or if you need futher instructions feel free to contact me, Mary Bubenzer
(your secretary) at

If you are unable to come this year please send us a note via email to
share with us "doings" in your family!

Due to cost and ease of use after this year we will be sending email only,
and not the paper mailing. If you know someone who is still getting the
mailing, please encourage them to send us their email addresses.

Hope you can come in July! We'd love to see you there!


Mary Bubenzer
Wright Family Secretary