Michael Thimgan

August Thimgahn arrived in Cass County, Nebraska in 1864.

One tree said Ottelie Mathilda Zierott born 1839 married Michael Thimgahn Jr.

Cline, Maxine. "Thimgahn Family." In History of Cass County, Nebraska (Skalak, Mary (ed.). 1989. Dallas: Curtis Media Corp. Page 591.

This is the Thimjin-Thimjan-Thimgahn-Thimgan story. Although the spellings differ, it is all the same family. [N.B. Pronounced Tim-yan.]  Our story begins with Michael Thimgan, Sr. and his wife. We have no birth date for Michael, but Anna Matilda Gehreka (known as Mary) was born in 1806 in Swetiz, Germany. The family lived at Marienwerder. Today this is about 50 miles south of Gdansk, Poland. The couple had two daughters and four sons. The oldest daughter, Eva, married Johann Schmidt. She took her own life, leaving five children. The other daughter was Caroline (Thiemann). The sons were Dave, Michael, August and Julius.

The mother and the four sons came to America. They stayed in Henry Co., Ill for a time and worked in the coal mines. Then they moved to Nebr. in 1863. They settled for 3-4 years around Plattsmouth and worked in the quarries. In 1867, they came to South Bend Precinct.

Dave and his wife Anna bought land from the Burlington Missouri Railroad. It was the SE 1/4 of Sec. 14, known as the W. Backemeyer farm. Their children were Matilda Kunz, Johanna Stock, Bertha Ostertag, and August. When Anna died, Dave married Sara Lau, the neighbor girl. Sara birthed 11 children: Emanuel, Theodore, Matthew, Louis, Lillian Rordanz, Emma Rordanz, David, Elva Kenworthy, Edward, Selma Gakemeier, and Daniel.

Michael Thimgan married Ottelia Zierott. They bought railroad land, the SE 1/4 Sec. 35 South Bend Precinct. It is known as Borland land. They had 11 children. None remained in Cass County. Michael helped establish the Ebenezer Evangelical Church, In 1883, Michael and Ottelia left Cass County, taking Michael's mother with them. They lived in the Hastings area for a time and then went on to found the town of LeRoy, Colo. Michael advertised his new town in German language church papers. Several families from Cass County followed him to LeRoy. When the drought came, Michael left his new town and moved to Sterling. Mary Thimgan is buried in Sterling, Colo.

August Thimgahn married Rosette Gaebel. August bought land from the Burlington Railroad in Sec. 34 South Bend Precinct. He paid $10 per acre. August built a house. A prairie fire came. He and Rosette tried to fight it with wet sacks, but as August described it, "The fire came faster than a horse could gallop." The house was destroyed. The family didn't know what to do since winter was coming. One morning they heard teams coming on their place. The neighbors had arrived with lumber! They helped build a new house.

August was a charter member of Trinity Lutheran Church. August's children were Marie Bohlsen, Danny, Theresa Stohlmann, Pauline, Martha, Augusta Heil, and Walter who married Louise Stohlmann. . . .

 Julius Thimgan married Sophia Gaebel. Julius farmed in South Bend Precinct, but never owned land in the county. He lived on the Clinton Jones farm and on the McKinnon place. Julius and Sophia had 12 children. They moved to Kansas from Cass County.

Caroline Thimgahn and her husband Peter Thiemann did not come to the United States with the others. They came in 1865 directly to Cass County. they took land in South Bend Precinct, the NW 1/4 of Sec. 26. Caroline and Peter brought little Bertha with them when they came from Germany. She married Henry Gakemeier. Augusta married Albert Zierott, Minnie married William Lau, Martha married Gus Wendt. There was a son Herman

The four Thimgahn brothers and their sister lived within a radius of 1 and 1/2 miles, all very near Trinity Lutheran Church. The Thimgahn niece and nephew, Ottelia Miller and Herman Schmidt, were near neighbors. There are hundreds of progeny of Matilda Gehreka Thimgan (Mary) living in Cass County at the present time.


Ottelia Schmidt had come to America to be with her uncles.. the Thimgahn brothers.   Ottelia’s mother, Eva Thimgahn Schmidt, had hanged herself in the chicken house in Germany.  So young Ottelia came to America alone to find a new life.  Later, her brothers and sisters joined her in America.  She married Christian Miller, who had come to Plattsmouth in 1869.

In 1870 Cass County "Michl Thiemgahn" is 26, Orilla 27, with Rodolf 4, Emma 3, Herman 2, and William 1.

In 1877 Cass County, "Michal Thymgan" is 34, Otelia 37, Rodolf 11, Anna 9, William 7, and Gustaff 6.

On the same page is Aug Thymgan 31, Rosetta 33, Thomas 7, Charlie 6, Mary 4, and Leinina nine months.

In 1880 Cass County, Nebraska, Michael 38 and Otetio 40 are farming, with Rudolph 14, Anna 13, Herman 12, William 10, "Gustabb" 9 Louis 8, Theodore 6, Otetio 3,  Jana 1, and mother Mary Thimgahn 73.

On the same page is David Thimgahn 42, with Sarah 21 (sic), children Matilda 18, Hanna 16, Bertha 13, August 11, Henry 8, Emmanuel 6, Thiedore 4, Matthew 3, Louis 2, Lillie 1, and  a son three weeks old.

August Thimgahn 34 , Rosetta 35, with Lenatia 10, Charles 9, Mary 6, Pauline 4, martha 2, and Laurel five months are also on the same page.


The site of LeRoy was laid out February 13, 1889 and filed February 14, 1889 by Michael Thimgan; Surveyed by W.L. Hayes, the same month."


 Michael cash-claimed a quarter in 25, 7N 50W in 1891.

He's probably the same Michael Thimgan who proved up 78 acres in Otero County in 1914.

That's the same pattern as Rudolph Thimgan who cash-claimed a quarter in 26, 7N 50W in 1890, and then proved up a quarter in Otero County in 1917.

Julius Thimgan cash-claimed 146 acres in 30, 7N 49W in 1891, and a LOUIS proved up a quarter in Otero County in 1917 and another three quarters for Stock Raising in Otero County in 1926.

Anna Thimgan cash-claimed at quarter in 35, 7N 50W in 1890, and Herman Thimgan a quarter in 2, 6N 50W in 1891.

1889 Mary Thimgan filed for a quarter in 23, 7N 50W, with witnesses  August Kuehn, William N. Thum, Fred Bernhard, and John Rhimler.

1889-1890 Sterling

1899 Sterling "A letter from Theo.  Thimgan states that he is at Los Angeles, Calif., enjoying the beautiful, blooming climate.

1899 Sterling "Rudolph Thimgan has completed his residence and will move to-morrow."

1899 Sterling "Herman Thimgan came in from Denver last evening. "

1904 "Lena Thimgan, dau. of Michael Thimgan, of Denver, Col., and Karl J. Lewis, son of Mrs. Geo. Lewis of Park st., Cincinnati, O., were married Nov 22, 1904 at the home of the bride on South 11th street, Denver, Col., Rev. H.O. Smith, pastor of Smith Chapel, officiating."

In 1910 Otero County Michael is 66, Tillie 69, both born in Germany.

FindaGrave 132933095 has Otillia Z. Thimgan - February 2, 1838 - March 21, 1915 buried in Inglewood,  Park Cemetery, California.

In 1920 Logan County "Michal" "is widowed, immigrating in 1862, naturalized in 1875, living with son Theodore 44 and Leona 42.

In Denver probate court in 1921 was a Michael Thimgan case.

California death records have a Michael Thimgan dying March 17, 1921, age 70, and FindAGrave 132933071 has Michael - May 25, 1842- March 17, 1921 buried in Inglewood Park Cemetery, too.

In 1930 Logan County Theodore is 55 born in Nebraska,  Leona M. 43 born in Wisconsin.

The stone in Sterling cemetery has Thimgan - Leyona M. 1876-1942 and Theo A. 1875-1941.

In 1900 Denver, Herman born March 1868 in Nebraska, is a hat salesman, married two years to Edna August 1879 Colorado, with Earl S. September 1899.

Michael born 1842 and Matilda 1840 are with them.  So are Herman's siblings -  Matilda July 1877, John July 1879, Laura June 1881, and Amanda May 1897 - Yes, it says Amanda is a sister of Herman).

Herman and Edna C. Thimgan divorced in Denver in 1902, and Herman married Nettie C. Scott May 29, 1905, recorded in Rio Grande County (may be why Herman was in neighboring Saguache County in 1940)

In 1910 Denver Herman is on his third marriage, married five years to Nettie 32, born in Iowa, and they have Vernon, 3.  Herman is a piano salesman.

1918 "Be it known that I, HERMAN Thimgan, a citizen of the United States, and a resident of the city and county of Denver, State of Colorado, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Sound Amplifiers for Phonographs; and it do declare the following to be a full, clear, and exact description of my invention, such as will enable others skilled in the art to which it appertains to make and use the same. My invention relates to improvements in means which, when used in conjunction with the horn of a phonograph, will amplify the sound of the instrument, obviate the harsh, metallic sound so apparent in such instruments, and eliminate all unnatural conditions in the reproduction of the voice or sound. "

1943 Saguache Crescent "A.H. Daniels returned to his home at Denver Saturday.  He had been staying with H. Thimgan."

Herman Thimgan 1868-1950 is buried in Crown Hill, Jefferson County.

Louis 1872-1960 and Emily (Murray) Thimgan 1873-1960 are buried in Rocky Ford, Otero County.

In 1940 Denver, John Thimgan is widowed, 62, and engineer.  His sister Tillie Millhouse, 63 also widowed, is with him.

John Thimgan 1879-1959 is buried in Fairmount, Denver. # 35160858, on the same stone as Mabel 1881-

(John F. Millhouse had married Tilly Thimgan Baker Jun 7, 1904, recorded in Denver, after John F. Millhouse and ANna K. Millhouse divorced in Denver in 1903.  John F. Millhouse, Jr. 1891-1903 is buried in Denver Fairmount.)

In 1900 Logan County "Rhudolph" is 34, Annie 34, Martha 10, with Ruben 2, a boarder William Schwalm, 24 born in Canada, a carpenter, and brother William Thimgan, a stationary steam engineer,  born July 1868 in Nebraska.

There's a William Thimgan born July 1869 in Los Angeles in 1900, with Gus July 1870, both laborers.  They're living with brother Louis Jan 1878?  and his wife Emily born in Iowa January 1873

The Los Angeles Times of March 1, 1900 said that among guests at a party were Misses Lena Thimgan, Tillie Thimgan, Mr. John Thimgan.

In 1910 Denver Rudolph is 45, Anna 43, married twenty years, with five children, two living.  Martha Breen 20, married two years and her husband John 22 are living with them, as is their daughter Leora 7, born in Colorado.

Rudolph died Feb 2, 1954, per FindaGrave 113389257, and is buried in Sidney, Nebraska, with Anna Caroline (Schoenman) Thimgan 1867-1959

Seymour, CT) — The world of Marine Art has lost a great talent. Internationally known artist, David Thimgan passed away on Wednesday, June 11, 2003 at his home in Chico, California.

David Thimgan was born in Inglewood, California in 1955. A self-taught artist, inspired and mentored by his father, he began painting and drawing ships as a child. Few artists painted the rich and varied maritime history of the West Coast with the devotion and passion of David Thimgan.

 Thimgan painted the Mendocino coast and its environs perhaps more than any other location, often traveling as an historian with camera, topographical map sketchbook and tape recorder in hand. He visited and examined those places up and down the West Coast that had once thrived with coastal maritime trade activity in order to conjure up what they must have looked like in the Age of Sail. Although his paintings were well researched and unique, it is the ethereal light and intoxicating Pacific Coast air that seem to pervade his work that earned him a special place among American marine artists.

 Retrospective showings of David Thimgan’s paintings have been held at the Australian National Maritime Museum, Ventura County Maritime Museum and the Kelton Foundation. David Thimgan was a member of the U.S. Naval Institute and a fellow in the American Society of Marine Artists. He was the recipient of the Mystic International Award of Excellence and two Rudolph J. Shaefer Awards.

Three books that included his paintings have been published. He will also be included in the October 2003 book, Bound for Blue Water: Contemporary Marine Art, a definitive collection of American marine artists of the twentieth century.

Survivors include: his brother Tom Thimgan of Phelan, California and mother, Jane Thimgan of San Bernandino, California; wife, June Carey and step-son, Robert Conly, both of Chico, California. A cremation will be held. Memorial donations may be made in David Thimgan’s name to: Chico Cat Coalition, P.O. Box 4214 Chico, California 95927 or Mystic Maritime Museum, P.O. Box 6000, Mystic, Connecticut 06355.



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