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The Te Slaa Family

I’ve spent the past couple of weeks focusing my research on the family of Johanna Te Slaa. She was Grandma’s grandmother, mother of Gertrude, and the first wife of Evert Vermeer.

From US & Iowa censuses, I was able to determine her family members and their approximate birth dates. Using the resources at the Iowa Gravestone Photo Project, I was able to find most of their final resting places, which gave me their dates of death. And using this info, I was able to look back and find most of their obituaries in newspaper archives for those who passed away before 1971.

Johanna was the daughter of Gerrit Jan Te Slaa (variations in first name found: Garret, Garrit John, G J) and Janna Geertruid Kruisselbrink (name variations: Gertrude, Johanna, Johanna G, Kruisenbrink, Kruiselbrink).

Obituary for Gerrit John Te Slaa
Garrit John Te Slaa died at his home in Hull after a short illness, diagnosed as pneumonia. Mr. Te Slaa was seventy four years old at the time of his death. He is survived by his wife and eight children.
Thirty eight years ago the Te Slaa family moved to America from Gelderland in the Netherlands. They lived around Sioux Center for some time and ten years ago the family moved to Hull. Six years ago Mr. and Mrs. Te Slaa celebrated their golden anniversary, and this was the last time all the children were at home at one time.
Sioux Center News
16 Apr 1931

Obituary of Mrs. G. J. Te Slaa
Miss Gertrude Kruiselbrink was born in The Netherlands, Oct. 16, 1854. She was united in marriage to G. J. Te Slaa in the year 1875. To this union 11 children were born, 1 dying in infancy in Holland.
In the year 1893 they with their 8 children came to America. Two children were born here. Three children preceded their mother in death. Hattie, Mrs. Harry Miersma died January 4, 1936; Johanna Mrs. Everett Vermeer, died 30 years ago and a son, Gerrit John died at the age of 20, some 30 years ago. The father passed away April 11, 1931.
The Te Slaa family spent most of their lives in America around Hull. Mrs. Te Slaa has been an innvalid for many years and has been confined to her bed most of the time.
On Saturday morning, July 20 she suddenly passed away at her residence in Hull. She leaves to mourn her passing, seven children, Henry, John, Mrs. Jake W. Vermeer, Mrs. Lambert Kooiker, Mrs. Dora Vander Schaaf, Mrs. John Hospers and William, 41 grandchildren, 74 great grandchildren and 1 great great grandchild.
The funeral was held at the home at 1:30 o’clock and 2 o’clock in the First Reformed church Monday afternoon July 22 with Rev. G. H. Dostra officating with the interment in the Hope cemetery. Six grandsons acted as pallbearers, Ralph Kooiker, Wilmer Miersma, Gerrit John Vermeer, Gerrit J. Te Slaa, Gerrit H. Te Slaa, Ed E. Vermeer.
Sioux County Capital
25 Jul 1940

They had 11 children:
1. Johanna: 1876-1905
2. Henry (Hendrik): 1877-1943
3. John G: 1879-1949
4. Cynthia (Gezina): 1880-1956
5. Hendrika: 1884-1884
6. Hattie: 1885-1936
7. Dora (twin): 1888-1979
8. Gertrude (Daatje, Dottie) (twin): 1888-1966
9. Gerrit John: 1890-abt 1910
10. Dena Wilhelmina: 1895-1973
11. William (Willem): 1898-1973

Over and over, I saw that their family had immigrated in 1893. However I couldn’t find them on any search at It was only after individually searching through the manifests of Dutch ships that arrived in 1893 that I found them. The name had been mis-transcribed as “Te Glaa”.

Posted in Researching.

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