Bernath, Johann George, Sr.
B. 21 Sep 1840, Thayngen, Schaffhuseon, Switzerland
D. Sept 30, 1916, St.Vincent, Kittson, County, MN
M:
Oct 1865, Catherine Donneral b. 24 Jun 1842
Note: Came to St.Vincent, MN in 1879

FN: Unknown Bernath
MN: Unknown

Catherine Donneral
B. June 24, 1842 - Alsace Lorraine, France
E: Emigrated to Canada in 1855
D. July 16, 1914 - St.Vincent, MN
M: 1865?, Johann Georg(e) Bernath, Sr. at Ethel, Ontario, Canada
Catherine was dau of Nicholas Donneral and Margaret Unknown.

Children of George Bernath, Sr. and Catherine Donneral:

1. John Nicholas Bernath
B. 12 Jul 1866, Ethel, Ontario, Canada
D. 04 Mar 1927, St. Vincent, Hill Township, MN
M: (1) Sara Nolte b. 9/20/1871 d. 11/26/06
M: (2) Jessie Dore, at Forfar, Scotland
b. 7/2/1881 d. 1/6/54 at St. Vincent, MN

2. Salome Bernath
B. 25 Nov 1867, Brussels, Ontario, Canada
D. 12 Dec 1953, Portage La Prairie, (Winnipeg), Manitoba, Canada. Buried: Hillside Cemetery, Portage La Prairie, Manitoba, Canada
M: 12 Aug 1891, John "Jack" Adams at Pembina, North Dakota
b. 10/8/63 Chesterton, Cambridge, England d. 10/8/53

3. Margaret Bernath
B. 11 Apr 1869, Ethel, Ontario, Canada
D. 01 Feb 1950, Los Angeles, CA. Buried: Hooker, Oklahoma
M. 1890, James A. Thompson at Fort Pembina, North Dakota

4. George Bernath, Jr.
B. 05 Mar 1871, Ethel, Ontario, Canada
D. 09 Jan 1956, Jamestown, ND, Buried: St Vincent, MN
M. 31 Dec 1902, Ellen Ernestine "Erna" Raynard at Ethel, Ontario. Ellen b. 3/2/1882 d. 2/27/21. Buried: St. Vincent, MN cemetery.

5. Julia Ann Bernath
B. 04 Jan 1874, Ethel, Ontario, Canada
D. 29 Mar 1948, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. Buried: Foam Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada
M. 1893, Charles Henry Hart, at Pembina, ND
d. 12/09/12, McArthur, ND

6. Albertina Bernath
B. 12 Apr 1876, Brussels, Ontario, Canada
D. 08 Apr1940, McArthur, ND. Buried: St. Vincent, MN
M. 04 Apr 1900, Charles Oakes, at Pembina, ND
(ended in divorce d. 5/23/62, Red Deer, AB)

7. Daniel T. Bernath
B. 21 Feb 1878, Ethel, Ontario
D. 17 Jan 1966, Multnomah, Oregon
M: Never married, no children

8. Barbara Ellen Bernath
B. 30 Nov 1881, St. Vincent, MN
D. June 1967, Long Beach, CA
M: James William Brown at St. Vincent, MN.
b. 4/1/1897 d. 12/10/34 Buried: Joe River Cemetery. No children

9. Mary Louise Bernath
B. 07 Feb 1884, St Vincent, MN
D. 26 Aug 1965, Hallock, MN. Interred in St. Vincent next to her parents
M. 12 Jul 1904, Arthur Hart, at St. Vincent, MN
b. 8/3/1874 d. 1965

10. Jacob "J.J." Bernath
B. 27 May 1886, St Vincent, MN
D: 26 Aug 1967, Long Beach, CA
M. Nellie Elizabeth Brown at Orleans, MN
b. 3/3/1890 d. 7/23/59 (sister of J.W. Brown)


The Bernath Family came from Brussells, Ontario, Canada in 1879 with seven children and their belongings to St.Vincent MN. They came via the railroad to Fishers Landing - thence via river boat to St Vincent - then drove over land to their homestead about six miles north east of St Vincent to what is known as the Joe River Community. The remaining three children were born and raised after their arrival.

Jake Bernath had ownership of the farm until the early 1930's and sold it to Arole Berg who still owns the land. Jake moved to Yakima, Wash because farming did not agree with his health. He joined the police force and eventuallly became Chief Of Police of Yakima, Washington.


When George, the youngest of the Bernath siblings left Ontario for Minnesota in 1979, the following events had taken place in his larger family: Clemens and Maurgerite Donneral Bernath, who farmed in the Palmerston, Ontario area, had had all eight of their children; Brother John and Anna Maria Herre Bernath in Victoria, Australia, had failed at vidiculture and had had all six of their children; Barbara, who had married the farmer Reinhard Rupp and had given birth to four children, was dead, and her widowed husband had remarried. Conrad, Jr. and his wife, Mathilde, who farmed the family homestead near Ethel, Ontario, had adopted little William, the elder son of brother Jacob, who had been killed in a railway accident. The elder Conrad was also dead.

So, George, his wife Catherine Donneral Bernath, and their seven children left crowded Ontario for Minnesota, where land was still available for homesteading. George had made a preliminary visit to Northwestern Minnesota in 1878, and the area around Portage La Prairie, Manitoba. But as the land in the Joe River area resembled the area around Ethel, Ontario in the spring of 1879, he and his family traveled by a steamer named the Owen Sound from Georgian Bay, Ontario to Duluth, Minnesota. They then traveled by rail to Fisher's Landing, Minnesota, and by Red River Steamer to Emerson, Manitoba, and overland to the Joe River community. Two other families traveled with them - the Ashs and the Websters, and they would homestead nearby. Mrs. George Ash (Salomey Donneral) was a sister to Catherine Donneral Bernath.

In the years that followed, three additional children were born to the Bernaths, Barbara Ellen, Mary Louise, and Jacob.

Initially, the Bernath farm consisted of 155+ acres, but would expand to 700 acres. The Bernaths raised hay and oats to feed the cattle, horses, and some sheep.. Cream and butter was their main source of income. They also sold livestock every fall.

Catherine Bernath died in 1914, and George in 1916. Their youngest son, Jacob, inherited the farm and sold it to a prominent Meti in 1935. (700 acres at $12.00 per acre over five years). Arlo Berg, Sr. is said to have acquired the farm in a poker game in 1938. In remains in the Berg family as of this writing. The original Bernath farmhouse was later sold and moved into St.Vincent, where it can still be seen. No one lives on the original farmstead.


The 1880 U.S. Census for Township 163, Kittson County, Minnesota:

George Bernath, age 39, BP: Switzerland
Catherine Bernath, age 37, BP: France
John Bernath, age 14, BP: Canada
Sarah Bernath, age 13, BP: Canada
Margarett Bernath, age 12, BP: Canada
Julia Bernath, age 10, BP: Canada
George Bernath, age 8, BP: Canada
Daniel Bernath, age 2, BP: Canada


Mrs. George Bernath, Sr.
1842-1914

Mrs. Catherine Bernath, wife of George Bernath of St.Vincent, who died on July 16th, was born in Lorraine, Germany, June 24, 1942. She came to Ontario in 1855, and to Kittson County, Minn. in 1879. She was the mother of ten children, all of whom are still living as is the aged father. John and Jacob of St.Vincent, George of McArthur, Dan of Makato, Mrs. Adams, Burnside, Man, Mrs. Thompson, Oklahoma, Mrs. Chas Hart, Foam Lake, Sask., Mrs. Brown, Orleans, Minn., Mrs. Oakes and Mrs. Arthur Hart of McArthur.

She was a devout member of the Methodist Church. She had been in earlier life a hard worker with her husband, and success both pecuniary and in the bringing up of a large and respected family crowned their united efforts. She was loved by her children and all that could be done to make her last days peaceful was done by their loving hands.

So ends the life of another pioneer. She has done well and all that came to her to do, and rests from her labors.
- - - St.Vincent, Minn., Newspaper


George Bernath, Sr.
1840-1916

George Bernath, Sr. of St.Vincent, died Friday evening, September 29, 1916 after an illness extended over a period of several months, aged 76 years. Funeral services were held Wednesday afternoon, conducted by the Rev. Mr. Powell, and the remains laid to rest beside those of his wife who preceded him by several years.

Mr. Bernath was a native of Switzerland. He came to Canada in 1857. Thirty seven years ago he came west and located on the Joe River, near St.Vincent, where he resided until he retired from farming and moved to St.Vincent.

Mr. Bernath was a man well-liked by all, and upright and honest in his business dealings which qualities is inculcated in his family of ten children who are all grown up and were present at the funeral save Mrs. Charles Hart of Foam Lake, Saskatchewan.

The children are John N., Jacob J., Mrs. Jas. Brown, of St.Vincent, George, Mrs. C. H. Oakes and Mrs. Arthur Hart of McArthur, Mrs. Charles Hart of Foam Lake, Mrs. Thompson of Hooker, Okla., and Mrs. Adams of Burnside, Manitoba.

In the death of Mr. Bernath another of the pioneers of northern Kittson County is numbered among the many who have departed to the great beyond in the last few years.

- - St.Vincent, Minnesota newspaper


J. W. Brown Died Monday
Death Came to Prominent Farmer While
He Was at the Sheep Sheds on the Farm
1879 - 1934

James W. Brown died of heart disease at his farm home southeast of St. Vincent Monday.

Deceased had been in very poor health for a couple of years, and death had nearly claimed him on several occasions. The summons came Monday, suddenly, while Mr. Brown was inspecting the sheep and sheep sheds on the farm.

James Brown was the sone of the late Thomas Brown, who settled on a farm in the Orleans section of the county in the early eighties. James was a small boy when he came here with his parents from Ontario. Since attaining manhood he has farmed near Orleans and near St. Vincent. He took a keen interest in all public matters and was prominent in community activities, township affairs, and county fair activities.

Mrs. Brown is a daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. George Bernath.

Deceased is survived by the widow, a brother, Robert of St. Vincent, a sister, Mrs. J. J. Bernath, of Yakima, Wash., and other relatives.

The funeral took place yesterday afternoon. The services were held at the North Star Church and the remains were laid to rest in the cemetery on the Finney farm.

- - The Pembina New Era


Sources:

Milfred D. Hart June 5, 2000, June 12, 2000

Russel M. Hart, 17 Sep 2002 (Formation@earthlink.net)