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Kempf, Gustave, Sr. Family Photographs

Forbes, North Dakota and rural McPherson County, South Dakota.

Photographs courtesy of Vicki (Kempf) Kurle of Hastings, Minnesota, grandaughter of Gustave Kempf, Sr.


Gustav Samuel Kempf and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf, were my grandpa and grandma on my dad's side. My grandma Ida (right) and her identical twin sister (Lydia (Schmitt) Nill) (middle) were daughters of Adolph and Katherina (Will) Schmitt. Their aunt Eva (Will) Kirk (left), who was the daughter of Johann and Katherina (Krein) Will, is the sister of Katherina (Will) Schmitt. My grandmother made and sold pheasants hats to hunters and others in the Aberdeen area during the 1950's and 60's. She applied each feather separately to make a hat. She spent very much time on each hat. The hunters paid her $50.00 a hat! Ida’s daughter Edna Hanson still has a hat and headband that her mom made. The twin sisters would go to barn dances where Gustav Kempf played in his band in Coldwater, before he married Ida Schmitt. He would dance with both twins but always knew which one was Ida. They couldn't fool him.
This is Gustav Samuel Kempf (my grandpa) with his cattle. This is the barn which he built on farmland that he bought in August 1937. This land was located near Walden School in northern McPherson County. He was born January 25, 1900, and died in 1969.
This is my grandpa Gust’s (Gustav Kempf) farm with the tall white house and red barn still standing: located from Forbes on state line go 1/2 mile East; McPherson County Road 23, 3 miles south and 1/2 mile west.  Mike and Nancey Klipfel live across highway 22 as the present owners at 10338 371 Ave. Forbes, ND  58439. Miles gave us a copy of land abstract from McPherson County, South Dakota. Fred and Mary Wolff sold the farm to my grandfather Gust and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf on Aug. 20, 1937 for $1.00! NW 1/4 of Sec. 27, Twp. 128, Rge. 66. (160 acres). They sold this farm on September 20, 1946 for $11,000. My grandfather Gust Kempf built the large barn. He dug a trench from the barn to the house so they could have running water. He was born January 25, 1900 in Ashley, ND. He married Ida (Schmitt) on March 11, 1920 in Coldwater, ND. They left the Ashley/Coteau area in 1933 and farmed on "Flatlands" by rural Forbes. His mother and father were Michael Kempf and Katherina (Bertsch). Gust's grandparents were Matthias and Katherina (Schlauch) Kempf.
My grandfather, Gust, was a musical person. He played pump organ, violin, drums and accordion.  My father Joseph C. Kempf inherited Gust's musical talents. My dad played piano accordion at age 17 in a band. He also played piano accordion on the local radio in North Dakota with Myron Floren, Lawrence Welk's right hand.  In the early 1960's my dad Joseph was the first to open a Nursing Home in the State of Idaho at Boise. In Idaho Falls, Idaho in 1964, he opened the first Nursing Home with a chapel, beauty and barber shop and physical therapy under one roof. A national magazine wrote an article, and the Nursing Home is still operating. In the 1970 he had Nursing Homes in Mason city, Iowa, which were the largest facilities in the Midwest. My dad's brothers and sisters (9) from Forbes area were: Ella who was a hair dresser with her own shop (I have a photo); Edna who was a glamour model and a business school graduate also and is living in Minnesota; Herbert who was the first male nurse graduate at Presentation college (I have a photo); Harley who was a barber; Gust Jr. who is 80 years old and still runs his Kempf Paper Corp. in Minneapolis, Minnesota; Roy who was in the Nursing Home business like my dad; Jeanne who was a nurse; and Paul who was a barber.
Ella Kempf Schumacher, daughter of Gustav and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf, in her shop called "Ella's Beauty Shop" in Ellendale, North Dakota during World War II in the 1940's.
My grandfather Gustav Samuel Kempf photographed in 1918 when he was 18 years old standing in front of his dad and mom's house (Michael and Katherina (Bertsch) Kempf in Ashley, ND).
This photograph was taken April 10, 1931 at a farm, which they rented near Forbes, ND.  The children of Gustav and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf: (Back Left to Right) Edna and Ella holding dolls and (Front Left to Right) Herbert, Gust Jr. and Harley held puppies while the mother dog looked on. My grandmother Ida was an identical twin (her twin was Lydia (Schmitt) Nill). Their parents were Adolph and Katherina (Will) Schmitt. And the ancestry goes back to Christian and Frederika (Bohlender) Schmitt. Their grandparents on their mom’s side were Johann and Katherina (Krein) Willt, and great-grandparents were Philipp and Margaretha (Krein) Willt.
This is my grandpa Gustav Kempf on his confirmation day.  He was born January 25, 1900 in Ashley, ND to Michael and Katherina (Bertsch) Kempf. His grandparents were Matthias and Katherina (Schlauch) Kempf. 
[Matthias Kempf was early pioneer photographer of Kulm and Forbes, ND. – per Jay Gage, GRHC curator.]
This photograph was taken in 1930 at a family farm which they rented near Forbes, ND before they bought their farm in 1937. The photo shows Gustav and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf with left Herbert (who later taught school to children in local rural Walden School a one room schoolhouse). Then Harley, Edna and Ella. Ida is holding Gust, Jr. My dad (Joseph C. Kempf) was born a year after this photograph was taken. Later three more children who were Roy, Jeanne and Paul Kempf.
The old butter churn stands with Jeanne Kempf (born May 11, 1937) to Gustav and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf, while living on their farmland near Forbes, ND. From Forbes on the state line go 1/2 mile East (McPherson County 23), 3 miles South, 1/2 mile West. Mike and Nancy Klipfel own it.  They live across the county highway from the old farm. Gustav (my grandfather) is the son of Michael and Katherina (Bertsch) Kempf. Gustav's grandparents were Matthias and Katherina (Schlauch) Kempf.
Gustav Samuel and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf children. The two older girls (Ella and Edna) are not in this picture and the younger son Arthur (Paul) was not born yet. Having fun with musical instruments: From the back (left) is (Elmer) Harley Kempf with the violin, Jeanne Kempf Klein with a little drum, Gust Jr. (who is 80 years old and owns Kempf Paper Corp. in Minneapolis), next is Herbert. In the front row (left) is Roy Kempf and my dad (Joseph C. Kempf). This was taken on their farm grandpa Gustav bought on August 20, 1937.
Gustav and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf's oldest son Herbert graduated as the first male nurse graduate at Presentation College in Aberdeen, SD. The plaque is hanging at Presentation College. After medical nursing program he completed his Anesthetist degree. Herbert was my Uncle and my dad's (Joseph C. Kempf) brother.
My grandpa Gustav Samuel Kempf at age 18 (right) with a couple (unidentified) on a farm. He was labored there. He lived in Ashley, ND. He married my grandmother Ida (Schmitt) in Coldwater, ND on March 11, 1920. He left Ashley in 1933 to farm "on the flats" in the Forbes area. My grandfather wanted to be a medical physician or veterinarian but he instead took care of all his farm animals and neighbors' animals, his daughter Edna told me.
Edna Kempf Hanson shown here in 1946 wearing her dress for her sister Ella Kempf Schumachers' Wedding.  Edna was the Maid of Honor.  Daughters of Gustav and Ida (Schmitt) Kempf. Edna went to glamour modeling school and  worked as a photographic model and later attended  business school.  She lives in Brooklyn Park, MN.

Circa 1940 photograph of Kempf cousins: Katherina “Katie” Pahl (left) and Edna Kempf Hanson (Right), near Forbes, ND. Respectively, they are great-grand daughters of sisters Fredericka Schlauch Kempf and Katherina Schlauch Kempf (origins in Beresina Colony, Bessarabia). Photo donated September 2009 by Edna Kempf Hanson.

This is the house where my grandpa Gustav Samuel Kempf lived as a child. His parents in photo are Michael and Katherina (Bertsch) Kempf. Michael was born September 2, 1861 and died June 6, 1919. He is buried in the St. Johannes Cemetery (Jewell, ND) and was a member of the Emmaus Lutheran Church in Ashley/Coldwater area. Michael's mother was Katherina (Schlauch) Kempf born June 1832 and died in 1922, and also was buried at the St. Johannes Cemetery. Michael 's dad was Matthias Kempf. When my grandpa Gustav Kempf was married to Ida (Schmitt) their first born daughter Violet Katherina Kempf died, and she is buried at St. Johannes Cemetery. Her birth was January 10, 1921 and died January 26th, 1921. Michael and Katherina (Bertsch) Kempf's sons in the photo are Julius Kempf, Otto Kempf, Gottfried Kempf, Gustav Kempf (my grandfather) and Ephriam Kempf. The young daughter is Rosalia Kempf Schmitt, and Paulina Kempf Fregien. The matron lady in the photo is Michael's mother Katherina Schlauch Kempf, as she lived to be quite old. My aunt Edna Kempf Hanson and Violet Kempf are verifying this information. Michael and Katherina (Bertsch) Kempf had two children besides these who died young.
The Russ Pike Radio Show (from Yankton’s WNAX AM Radio) performs on outdoor stage at State Fair at Huron, South Dakota, in summer of 1948.  Lead singer Russ Pike with his Gibson guitar was accompanied by seventeen-year-old Joseph C. Kempf on organ accordion, plus guitar.  Their music and singing included “Old Time” polkas and “Western” cowboy croons.  Violet Kempf Woehl of Ashley, North Dakota in her youth listened to Russ Pike sing with guitar from WNAX Radio at Yankton.
This 1948 State Fair performance of Russ Pike with his Gibson guitar (left) shows seventeen-year-old Joseph C. Kempf (second right) with organ accordion, with “Western” cowboy croons at Huron, South Dakota. They had WNAX Radio broadcasts from Yankton.
This 1941 family portrait of Gustav Kempf, Sr., family with family car. Back Row: Gustav Kempf Sr., Edna (18), Harley (14), Herbert (16), and Ella (19). Middle Row: Ida (Schmitt) Kempf, Roy (9), Joseph (10) and Gust Jr. (12) Front Row: Paul (2) and Jeanne (4) Near Forbes, North Dakota in McPherson County
On the right is Johann Schmidt from our side born 1845-1919 who was first married with Christina Kurle and they had a son and then she died and he married Rosina Leicht. On the left is Lorraine Bader Kurle's dad Christ Bader who lived with Johann Schmidt's daughter Rosina and John Wolf . They took Lorraine's dad in their home when he was around 10 years old and raised him. So Johann was like a grandpa to him and his own daughters' kids Emma Stiegelmeier and Rosina Wolf and Dr Walter Wolf. They called him "Pa" Schmidt
This circa 1939 or 1940 photograph at Aberdeen Civic Arena, Brown County, South Dakota: Musician Lawrence Welk was playing his button-accordion. Ervin Bader (nineteen-years of age) stands behind Lawrence, having attended Welk’s wedding dances in Strassburg. Ervin Bader’s older sister Lorraine Bader Kurle is mother to Chuck Kurle. Christian Bader and Wilhelmina Mauch Bader were their parents. Two gentlemen (photo left and right) are unidentified. Photo courtesy of Charles Kurle, with rights to Bowdle, Edmunds County, South Dakota.
Charoal drawing of Gustav Kempf, Sr. by Vicki (Kempf) Kurle.
Mary (Binstock) Greff and husband Gabriel Greff, Gottlieb and Erma (Dye) Kempf at the wedding of Louie and June (Kempf) Greff on February 25, 1961.  June is the daughter of Gottieb and Erma (Dye) Kempf. Photo courtesy of Susan (Greff) Renschler.
June (Kempf) Greff’s Wedding Day on February 25, 1961. Photo courtesy of Susan (Greff) Renschler.
Mrs. Erma (Dye) Kempf wife of Gottlieb Kempf on her 80th birthday on September 13th  1985 in Forbes, ND with Mrs. John Meier (left a kempf cousin) and Mrs. Sophie Kempf (right wife of Matt Kempf) Erma Kempf was my Grandmother – Photo courtesy of Susan (Greff) Renschler.
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