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We're going to party ....

For you folks out East, well 175 might not seem "old." Where I live it is close to ancient. I am a military brat, I've lived in a lot of places. I could live whereever I wanted, but I keep coming back to here, Southern Illinois. Where my family has lived since 1857 when we fled Soctland. I am told my family has a nack for telling folks to go "fuck themsleves" when we don't agree with them. I hear there was a King in some country called England that didn't so much like to hear that :). We were told to bow before him, well I think there is a popular movie about how we dealt with that.

So we got on a boat and came here. In a letter my great (x7 I think) grandfather wrote he said:

I dug coal and worked the rails.
Well until he got to where I live and he decided this was a good place to live.

Below the fold some history and a story.

In 1835 four families in Germany decided to get on a boat and sail to the United States. They docked in New Orleans and took a boat north, to St. Louis. When they got to St. Louis they sold everything they had, bought supplies and started to walk east. They heard there was land.

They walked about 33 miles and came to where I now live. I often wonder what they must have thought. Soil as dark as tar. Lakes, rivers, and streams that even to this day you can catch fish and not even try. Land you can farm and forest for as far as the eye can see. It must have looked like heaven on earth for them.

The view outside my front door ....

Outside My Front Door (5/22/11)

So in 1836 they founded the town I live in.

My little town rocks.

I mentioned in the title of this diary this was an immigration story. It is. See my last name is "Young." It is 2012. My town was founded by Germans in 1835. They wrote home and other Germans move here. Lots of them. When I give my name to somebody I have to say my last name is Young with a "Y". Even to this day if your last name is "Young" well it is spelt with a "J."

I am not fluent in German, but I can get around the language, cause well German was a mandatory class in my high school. If you walked into a store in my town and said:

Sprechen Sie Deutsch
You will be engaged in conversation.

Clearly I am not German. Anybody can live here. But the culture is German even to this day. They were the immigrants that founded this town 175 years ago. Unless you are a Native American you are an immigrant like I am. I LOVE the German culture brought here to Southern Illinois. IMHO it is what makes America great. A melting pot of all kinds of shit.

So when folks are against say, a Latino moving in, just tell them what I just said. They were an immigrant at one time. They shouldn't forget that little fact.

BTW: I should note that within a few miles of my house you have the oldest town in IL. The oldest library. The oldest college.

Originally posted to webranding on Fri May 11, 2012 at 04:22 PM PDT.

Also republished by Genealogy and Family History Community.

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