Pulskamp News

Family History, News, and Plans for the World Wide Gathering of the Pulskamps August 1-3, 2008

Seán David Pulskamp

Posted on December 18, 2014 - Filed Under Uncategorized

My brother’s grandson, Seán David Pulskamp, died recently at the age of 19. He was a great kid and left far too soon. My brother spoke at his memorial service and I wanted to share his words with you all. Cherish each other!


To all of our friends and family: Good after noon, as good as it can be. And, yes, in spite of our hearts being heavy and filled with sadness, it can still be a good afternoon.

I’m honored to be able to speak today. For those who don’t know me, my name is John Pulskamp. I am Seán’s paternal grandfather.

Seán started out in this life a little early. He was born prematurely and spent, what seemed to us, as an awfully long time in the hospital before he could come home. So, physically, he started out very small and frail. But over time he grew to be big and strong, and to be honest, very remarkably handsome as well.

Like every family I’ve ever known, Seán’s family had their own sets of difficulty. There were times when his father couldn’t be with him, and eventually his parents parted ways. Judging from the fine young man Seán grew to be, it appears that he weathered the storm quite well. Fortunately, Seán was able to continue to spend time with both of his parents. Whatever difficulties there might have been within the family Seán was always loved, aware of that love, and was able to reciprocate with love as well. In addition to his parents he was blessed with grandparents, many other family members, and a little sister, Jade, whom he cherished.

I am fortunate that during the past few months I was able to talk with my grandson about several things. He told me he had been thinking of attending Peirce College. We discussed it a bit, and told him that I’d go with him to help get through all the red tape involved with registration and selecting classes. I also had talked to him about the wonderfully educational experience of traveling, not so much to tourist places, but to places where one would be able to meet and mix with regular people from very different backgrounds. We talked about youth hostels, and even kicked around the idea of maybe taking a little trip here in the U.S. and staying at some hostels. Unfortunately, well . . .

A quick story about Seán’s name: Backing up a couple of generations . . My father’s name was John Joseph, to avoid confusion and since my middle name was Richard, I was always called by the nickname, “Dick.” at home. At school and everywhere else I was known as “John” which eventually created confusion anyway, especially when people would call on the phone and ask for John. My dad would end up with my calls, and I with his. Seán’s father, John Thomas or Tommy, and I ended up with the same sort of ancestral problem. We were each known as “John” to our friends and co-workers, and just as I was called “Dick” by my parents, Seán’s father has always been “Tommy” to us. When Seán was born, Tommy said he was going to avoid all the confusion with the names, so he and Sharon named their baby “Seán” instead of “John.” Try as they might, though, the confusion, though minimized, was not entirely eliminated. You see, the name “Seán,” in the Irish, is usually anglicized to “John,” and there are a number of people who have always called me by that name, “Seán,”anyway And so, it continues.

Seán’s mother and her family are Jewish; his father’s family was already one of mixed cultures. Seán’s paternal grandmother is Diné (pronounced “dih neh”) or Navajo. His paternal grandfather, myself, came from a somewhat typical Irish-American Catholic background. Seán was proud of his Native ancestry and occasionally was able to attend various pow wows around southern California, and on at least one occasion was able to visit the Navajo Reservation, “the Rez,” and meet loads of Navajo cousins, aunts, and uncles. According to Diné tradition one of the four sacred stones should be worn, sort of as a prayer, and as a way for the deities and others in the spirit world to recognize one as Diné. Seán is being buried wearing a beautiful turquoise necklace.

With all this mixed cultural background there are quite likely things that could result in questions, or even misunderstandings. The funerary traditions of Jews and Catholics may differ a bit, but the general outlook on death is probably fairly similar. For the very traditional Diné people, and maybe for Jews, some of the Irish traditions might seem completely irreverent. Today, though, in spite of any cultural differences there might be, we are all one people tied to together by Seán’s life, and yes, sadly, by Seán’s death.

Many, or probably even most of us, upon learning of a loved one’s death begin to mentally go through a painful thought process bringing up a litany of things we could have, or should have, done differently. This is natural, but I think not helpful. Each of us has a life to live, and when we are occupied taking care of one thing, there is always something else we could be doing instead. It is fundamentally fruitless to grieve about what we could have, or should have, done with Seán while he was with us. I can’t imagine that Seán, in any way, felt that any one of us even slightly let him down, or disappointed him. If you are having these kinds of feelings or doubts, forgive yourself! What we can do though is to look around, think about the people you know, especially those whom you may have offended in some way, or friends with whom you’ve lost touch. If one of these, still living, were to die, what would go through your mind as far as the “what you could have done, or should have done” for them or with them? To honor Seán, do those things! It’s never too early to avoid being too late. I think Seán would be pleased to have us honor him in that way.

Long Lost Cousins

Posted on June 7, 2013 - Filed Under Family history, Pulskamps Today

On Thursday, June 6, 2013, I drove to Tell City, Indiana to meet with some of the descendents of Catherine Pulskamp Dickman and Anton Dickman. I am guessing that descendents of Catherine and descendents of her three brothers had not seen or met each other in 100 years or more! It was really fun.

The cousins I met are descended from Norma Dickman. Norma had two children, out of wedlock, so they kept the Dickman name, then she married a very nice man, August Steinhauer, who turned out to be a good father and grandfather for the Dickman children and grandchildren.

The Dickman’s treated me to a lovely lunch at Capers in Tell City then took me to see Catherine’s grave site as well as other Dickman memorials. Anton is buried in a different cemetery for some reason, which is why we had a hard time locating Catherine.  Cousin Kay Poehlein Seibert who had previously done some volunteer work for the local historical society was the one who did the research to find Catherine.

Now if only we could find some information about the other Pulskamp girls who arrived with the family in 1845. After the ship, the barque Louise landed, we heard no more about those girls and can find no information about them. It’s a mystery!

Mike Dickman, Kay Poehlein Seibert, and Joe Dickman

Mike Dickman, Kay Poehlein Seibert, and Joe Dickman

Pulskamp Centennial in North Dakota

Posted on June 4, 2013 - Filed Under Uncategorized

In 1913, Jacob Pulskamp purchased 198 acres of land north of Hillsboro, North Dakota. That farm is still very much viable today and the Pulskamp family is planning for a big centennial celebration. The event will take place on Saturday, July 6, 2013.

The big day will include lunch, a presentation by Leo Pulskamp on his recent book: Namesake: The Story of Jacob Pulskamp, family friendly activities and dinner. On Sunday, the family and friends are invited to join for Mass at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church at 8:30 AM, which will be followed by a lite snack at the Pulskamp Farm.

If you can attend, bring cameras, stories, and family photos to share. For more specific information, send me a comment and I will email you directly with what details I have. The North Dakota Pulskamps would like to know by June 10 if you plan to attend so they can plan accordingly.

Patricia Theresa Pulskamp Busch December 15, 1950 – July 16, 2012

Posted on July 25, 2012 - Filed Under Uncategorized

Patti Busch, born Patricia Theresa Pulskamp on December 15, 1950, died Monday, July 16, 2012 at her mother’s home. Patti was the fourth child of John and Kay Pulskamp and grew up in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles. After graduating from St. Genevieve High School in Panorama City, Patti attended Loyola Marymount University. In 1972, Patti met Ron Busch, the love of her life, while both were working at the same company. A few years later, after their wedding, they joined Patti’s younger sister Mary working at Lake Amador, welcoming campers and fishermen to the resort and running the restaurant there. In 1991, Patti and Ron, in partnership with Mary and her husband Robert, purchased a diner on Main Street Jackson that became the beloved Rosebud’s Classic Café. Patti was well loved by customers and staff. After a trip to Ireland in 2001, the two couples opened the Celtic Knot, an Irish import store next door to the café. Several years ago they split the two businesses, with Patti and Ron taking full control of the Celtic Knot.

Patti had a great love of horses, especially her beloved big brown, Henderson, the “world’s most wonderful horse”.

Patti had a beautiful sense of style and beauty. She used that in needlework, knitting and also painted wonderful (mostly blue) furniture that is treasured by all who see it. Of course, her awesome sense of design and beauty is evident in the marvelous items she has selected to carry in the Celtic Knot.

The young people who came to work at the café and shop were so blessed by her guidance. She was a positive impact in the lives of her ‘peeps’. She held them all close to her heart and saw them as family.

Patti was so good to everyone! Her superpower was to recognize and jump into service to others, often before they realized their own needs. The last several years, Patti became an integral member in J.B.C.A. where she sat on the board and served as the membership coordinator.

Patti is best remembered as a wonderful wife, daughter, sister, aunt, (fairy) godmother, employer, shop owner, sports fan, horse-loving savant, and friend. She is survived by her husband, Ron Busch, brother John Pulskamp and his wife Betty, sister Ellen Turner and her husband Ray, sister Mary Pulskamp and her husband Robert Lockhart, and brother Michael Pulskamp and his wife Deborah, as well as almost sister Laurie. Patti also leaves her many nieces and nephews: Morrigan, Cailin, Tom, Kevin (and Lisa), Brighid (and Bill), Brendan, Emmet, Diarmuid, Robert, Nora, Jennifer, Ben (and Megan), Rebecca (and Paul), Meghan (and Paula), Tyx, and Kyle. Grandnieces and grandnephews include: Fiona, Sean, James, Rachel, Patrick, Kristin, Rebecca, Alana, Liam, Maggie, Kate, Elanor, and Molly. Patti was greeted on the other side by her amazing parents, John and Kay Pulskamp and her sister Carol.

Family and friends will be waking at 290 Gold Strike Court in Sutter Creek from 11 am to 11 pm on Monday July 30 th. with a Gathering Circle and Celebration of Life at 5:30 pm. Please join us.

Donations in Patti’s memory would be appreciated at:

Mountain Oaks Health Center
556 Mountain Ranch Road
San Andreas, CA 95249
(209) 498-2014

My dear sister, Patti, had no health insurance, and so rarely saw a doctor in the last dozen or so years. If affordable healthcare had been available, we might have enjoyed this wonderful woman for another 15 or 20 years.

Harold H. Pulskamp

Posted on June 27, 2011 - Filed Under Uncategorized

Harold H. Pulskamp, 89, Celina, passed away at 3:45pm on June 25, 2011, at Celina Manor Nursing Home.

He was born on March 9, 1922 in Mercer County to Wiro & Lela (Orr) Pulskamp.

On June 29, 1944, he married Blanche Mills, who survives.

Also surviving: son: Frank (Linda) Pulskamp, Ostrander, OH; niece: Lee Stickland, N. Augusta, SC.; 3 grandchildren; 4 great-grandchildren.

Preceded in death by: sister: Mary Mackling.

Harold was a 1943 graduate of Celina Senior High School. He retired from Mersmans in 1984 after 41 years of service.

Funeral services will be held 3pm, Thursday, June 30, 2011 at Cisco Funeral Home, Celina, the Reverend Tom Christen, officiating. Private family burial rites will be held at North Grove Cemetery, Celina.

Visitation will be held at the funeral home from 1pm until 3pm on Thursday. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Beaver Chapel, Celina.

Arrangements are by Cisco Funeral Home, Celina. Condolences may be left at www.ciscofuneralhome.com

Joseph Doll

Posted on June 6, 2011 - Filed Under Uncategorized

Joseph Doll, son of Alphonse and Leona Pulskamp Doll, died on Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Joseph was born on March 26, 1937 and passed away on Wednesday, June 1, 2011.

Joseph was last known to be living in Crescent Springs, Kentucky.

He was preceded in death by his wife Gertrude.

Mass of Christian Burial Monday June 6, 2011, 1:00 p.m. at Blessed Sacrament Church, Ft. Mitchell.Visitation Monday June 6, 2011, 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at Blessed Sacrament Church, Ft. Mitchell .Reverend AL Ruschman officiating. Entombment at St. Mary Cemetery, Ft. Mitchell.

Donations may be made at any 5/3 Bank.

Posted on December 18, 2010 - Filed Under Family history, Pulskamps Today

Clarence Dickman, Jr., 86

I received a letter on December 17, my Dad’s birthday, from the daughter of Junior Dickman. I had corresponded with him regarding the Dickman side of our family and am very sorry I was not able to meet him in person. The weekend we had our World Wide Gathering of the Pulskamps the Dickmans were busy in Tell City celebrating their local history there. Below is the obituary for this cousin of ours.

Clarence E. (Junior) Dickman

Clarence E. (Junior) Dickman

TELL CITY – Clarence E. “Junior” Dickman Jr., 86, died at 3:20 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14, 2010, at Charlier Hospice Center in Evansville, after a nine year battle with cancer. His family was at his side.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Clarence A. and Florence (Miles) Dickman; two sisters, Georgia Lee Howland and Marietta Kleeman and a brother-in-law, Martin Kleeman.
Junior was a Tell City High School graduate and a World War II Army veteran. He was married Aug. 16, 1947, to Mary Margaret Bartholet, who survives.
Junior worked for General Electric for 14 years and was the custodian of St. Paul’s Catholic Elementary School and St. Paul’s Catholic Church for 18 years before retiring. He enjoyed walking, dancing, playing euchre, gardening, working crossword puzzles and being with family. He was an avid sports fan of Indiana University, Notre Dame, Indianapolis Colts, St. Louis Cardinals and tennis.
Surviving is his wife of 63 years, Mary Margaret Dickman of Tell City; a son, Marty Lee Dickman and his wife, Donna, of Dale; three daughters, Christie Dickman of Indianapolis, Michaella Sims of Chandler and Marybeth Dickman of Tell City; three grandchildren, Brandon Sims and his wife, Jennifer, and Molly Sims of Chandler and Brianne Hammack and her husband, Shane, of Tell City; a sister-in-law, Junko Bartholet of Paron, Ark.; one great-grandson, Caine Michael Sims of Chandler.
The Mass of the Resurrection to celebrate his life was held Monday, Oct. 18 at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Tell City. The Rev. Larry Richardts officiated. Burial was in St. Mary’s Cemetery.
Zoercher-Gillick Funeral Home in Tell City was in charge of arrangements.
He will be sadly missed by his family and friends. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, St. Jude’s Children Hospital or The Charlier Hospice Center in Evansville.

Irene F. (Wallpe) Jones

Posted on November 29, 2010 - Filed Under Uncategorized

CAMBRIDGE CITY, Ind. — Irene F. Jones, age 97, of Cambridge City, Ind., died on Friday, Nov. 26, 2010, at Arbor Trace in Richmond, Ind.

Irene F. Wallpe Jones

Irene F. Wallpe Jones

She was born in St. Mary’s, Ind., on Aug. 30, 1913, to Jacob and Anna (Pulskamp) Wallpe and had lived in the Cambridge City area since 1939. Irene was a homemaker. She was a member of St. Elizabeth Catholic Church in Cambridge City, St. Elizabeth’s Altar Society and the Daughter’s of Isabella in Connersville.

Irene is survived by a daughter, Barbara Ann Jansing Gibson of Brookville, Ind.; two sons, Tom (Joyce) Jones of Riverside, Calif., and Ross (Lan) Jones of Huntington Beach, Calif.; eight grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 65 years, Roscoe T. Jones, who died on July 31, 2001; two sisters, Agnes and Olivia; and six brothers, Joseph, Alvin, Gerhard, Dick, Andrew and Albert.

The Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2010, at St. Elizabeth Catholic Church in Cambridge City with Father Joseph Rautenberg officiating. Entombment will follow at Shrine of Memories Mausoleum in Connersville, Ind.

Friends may call from 4-7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010, at Waskom Capitol Hill Chapel in Cambridge City, Ind. The Rosary will be recited at 7 p.m.

Memorial contributions may be made to a favorite charity.

Online condolences may be made at www.waskoms.com.

From the Valley City Times Record, Valley City, North Dakota

Posted on July 10, 2010 - Filed Under Family history, Pulskamps Today, Uncategorized

Sister is last link to story of war

Tuesday, 06 July 2010
Is final survivor of Nazi incarceration

By Paul Riemerman
Staff writer

Maryvale Sister Eloise Marie Pulskamp has become the last surviving member of a group of seven nuns from The Sisters of Mary of the Presentation who survived incarceration in a Nazi concentration camp in France during World War II.
When the Germans decided to round up nuns in France who were from the U.S., Pulskamp, 90, was living at the order’s motherhouse in Brittany, France, established in the late 1700s.
Pulskamp became the last survivor of the camp from her order after fellow nun and Maryvale resident Sister Alexandras Turcotte, 93, died Wednesday.
“It’s kind of tough for me to be the last survivor. I hated to see Sister Alexandras die. I had a special connection with her,” Pulskamp said Monday.
The nuns were not starved, and were treated relatively well. “The worst part was the incertitude. Some people would disappear and never come back. We didn’t know what was going to happen to us.”
Pulskamp and her fellow nuns were all Americans finishing their novitiates at the motherhouse in France when the Germans rounded them up. At the time Pulskamp was in her early 20s.
Only the Americans were captured and sent to the camp.
“The Germans made us walk from the motherhouse to the train station,” Pulskamp said.
She arrived in France in 1940, before the war between the U.S. and Germany and before Germany invaded France.

For the complete story, see the July 6, 2010 print edition of the Valley City Times-Record.

Story about Joseph Pfister, friend of the Pulskamp Family in Celina

Posted on June 29, 2010 - Filed Under Family history

Cousin Daniel Hart wrote recently to tell me about the loss of his mother, Mary Bea Kohnen, granddaughter of J. Henry Pulskamp. She died June 9th 2010 and left Daniel and his siblings with some wonderful pieces of the Pulskamp history. One piece he is sharing with us is the a story from a 1978 History of Mercer County Ohio. The story is a biography of artist Joseph Pfister, who grew up with the large Pulskamp family in Celina, Ohio. He is the artist who did the painting, Dulah in Red which is posted on this website.

Text from story. (Not all the text, just the story part. If you need the entire text, let me know and I will forward the full PDF to you.)

Joseph Pfister, born March 3, 1895 in Newport, Ky. (died August 16, 1952 in Cincinnati, Ohio) received his early education at the Immaculate Conception School in Celina. Then he attended the Art Institute of Chicago and on June 15, 1917 received a certificate of completion of three and one-half years of drawing, antique life, painting and still life.

Pfister enlisted in the US Army September 18, 1917 at Celina. He served in Co. A 308th Engineers in the Aise-Ainse offensive Aug. 18-30, 1918; Ainse-Marne July 28-Aug. 6, 1918, Aesle sect. defensive Aug. 6-30, 1918; Meuse=Argonne offensive Oct. 9-Nov. 11; Chateau Thiery offensive July 12, 1918. Before he was sent overseas he was trained in the Military Trade School, Washington Barracks, D.C. and was awarded a certificate of achievement from the School of Photography. It was his job to sketch or to photograph bridges or other works that were blown up by the Germans. These sketches or photographs, often made from an airplane, were rushed to headquarters where the engineers made plans for restoration so that Allied forces could move ahead. After Armistice, Pfister was assigned to the Army of Occupation. He sketched German military fortifications along the Rhine. Honorable Discharge was received July 14, 1919. Then came two year scholarship at the Beaux Arts Institute in Paris an travel in Europe. At the Versailles Peace Conference he sketched Clemmenceau, the Old Tiger of France, a work that is in France today. Returning to USA, Pfister studied anatomy for a year at Flower Hospital in New York.

His major work was portrait painting. He had his studio in Chicago, in Celina, and after 1938 in Cincinnati. Pfister’s favorite commissions were the two portraits of Don Gentile, the flying ace of World War II who completed three hundred missions, which he did for the Gentile family and for a Piqua, Ohio veterans’ organization. In 1940 he painted the portrait of Pope Pius XII, whom he had never seen. The war prevented his going to Rome, so he resorted to other portraits, photographs, and the descriptions of people who knew the pope. Most Reverent Archbishop John T. McNichols offered many helpful criticism of the work. Another portrait which was received with much publicity an acclaim was that of President Truman done in 1946.

A collection of clippings, exhibition catelogues, photographs of his works, document, by and about Joseph Pfister are in the file of the Cincinnati Art Museum Library donated by Mrs. Donald M. Wood.  She is Anna Lee Pfister Wood, daughter of Leo an Margaret Pfister, and she has the following collection of Joseph Pfister’s works in her Cincinnati home. Franklin D. Roosevelt; Federal Judge Frank L. Kloeb of Toledo; President Harry Truman; Governor John W. Bricker; John Francis Beckmeyer (?); John MacGrego (?); Dulah in Red Velvet; Miss Dulah Pulskamp; The Misses Alexandra and Mary; Miss Nathalie Fleish (?); Woman Wearing Orchids; Mrs. Albert Gearson (?); Orchids; Venus de Milo; Football Game; Expulsion; Broadway Chorus Girl (chalk); Hiawatha; Sketch for a Proposed Mural; Charcoal studies of: Josephine Pfister; Pius Pfister; Three watercolors: As You Like It — Roselinda; Falstaff; Midsummer Night’s Dream; One oil cartoon: Dorothy’s Little Boxer.

Biography of Joseph Pfister, friend of Pulskamp Family of Celina

Biography of Joseph Pfister, friend of Pulskamp Family of Celina

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