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Justina Carolina Wendland Boelter
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Birth: Dec. 25, 1832, Germany
Death: Feb. 15, 1919
Kenyon
Goodhue County
Minnesota, USA

Justina Boelter was born in Germany to parents Jacob and Caroline (nee Cobitsche) Wendland. In 1854, at 22 years of age, she left her elderly parents and homeland for America, settling in Marquette County, Wisconsin. Here she met John Boelter, a German immigrant, and the two were married. In June of 1862, Justina and John, with their children, moved to Renville County in Minnesota. Their claim was in the southeast quarter of section 34, Flora Township, in an area known as the Middle Creek settlement. Living next to them in section 35 was John's brother, Michael Boelter, his wife, Justine (nee Koberstein), and their children. Many in the Middle Creek area were killed by Indians in an attack on August 18, 1862, the first day of the Dakota uprising. Among those killed was Justina's husband, John Boelter. On that August morning, Justina heard shots fired nearby, and noticed the strange behavior of some Indians who were passing through the area. When she reported this to John, he went out to check their cattle, but never returned. At the same time, Michael Boelter and two others were traveling to the agency for supplies when they discovered three bodies on the road, apparently killed by Indians. Upon returning home, Michael found the murdered remains of his family and heard Indians close by, so he ran to his brother's claim to warn Justina and her three children, who somehow survived the attack. The five survivors were fleeing together, but were soon separated. Michael was carrying Justina's baby, Julius, and Justina was with her small daughters. She realized that it was impossible for them to keep up with Michael, and, observing the Indians approaching, she decided to hide in a nearby wooded area. Here she would stay for nearly nine weeks. Very much afraid, Justina and her two little girls remained hidden, surviving on raw vegetables and vines, and enduring the rain and cold temperatures, without fire or shelter. The three grew very weak, and, during the fifth week, Emelia, the older daughter, died of exposure and starvation. When the weather got much colder in mid October, Justina and her surviving daughter, Ottilie, managed to return to their home. In their ninth week of hiding, soldiers of a search party found them lying on the floor, nearly starved to death, but both were eventually nursed back to health. Meanwhile, Michael Boelter, fleeing with Julius, his baby nephew, and meeting other refugees on the way, made it safely to Ft. Ridgely, some 20 miles away. About a year later, on September 13, 1863, Justina and her brother-in-law, Michael (who lost his family), were married. They moved to a farm in the southeast quarter of section 20, Holden township, Goodhue County, near Kenyon, MN where they had seven more children. They farmed here and in the northeast quarter of section 29 for the next 45 years, moving into town in 1910. Michael died in 1914, and Justina died five years later in 1919.
Bill Cox 
 
Family links: 
 Spouses:
  John Boelter (1823 - 1862)*
  Michael Boelter (1831 - 1914)*
 
 Children:
  Emelia Boelter (1857 - 1862)*
  Ottilie Boelter (1859 - 1880)*
  Julius J. Boelter (1861 - 1908)*
  John Julius Boelter (1864 - 1938)*
  Elizabeth Louise Boelter Eigenbrodt (1866 - 1949)*
  William Frederick Boelter (1868 - 1942)*
  George August Boelter (1871 - 1927)*
  Henry Boelter (1871 - 1949)*
  Simon John Boelter (1874 - 1950)*
  Lydia Emelia Boelter Snyder (1877 - 1950)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Kenyon Cemetery
Kenyon
Goodhue County
Minnesota, USA
Plot: The grave is located in the middle of the cemetery where two roads intersect. There is an old handpump in the cemetery. If you can find this, walk about 100 feet south and then about 40 feet west to find the plot.
 
Created by: Bill Cox
Record added: Sep 02, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 58091672
Justina Carolina <i>Wendland</i> Boelter
Added by: Bill Cox
 
Justina Carolina <i>Wendland</i> Boelter
Added by: Bill Cox
 
Justina Carolina <i>Wendland</i> Boelter
Added by: Bill Cox
 
 
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- garrett596
 Added: Aug. 29, 2013

- Lisa Burks
 Added: Aug. 20, 2013
Victim of the Sioux Uprising of 1862, noted on pages 66 and 67 of The Sioux Uprising of 1862 by Kenneth Carley published by the Minnesota Historical Society Press
- MN Headstone Hunter
 Added: Feb. 7, 2013
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