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Oklahoma Family Tree Stories

This beautiful sculpture of three redbud trees with gold and silver leaves by artist Robin Starke is located just outside the Eleanor & John Kirkpatrick Research Center in the Oklahoma History Center. Each leaf of the "Oklahoma Family Tree" memorializes an Oklahoma family with the family surname, first name(s), and the town or county where they lived. In addition, a short family history will be preserved in the digital family history book at the base of the tree. This is a great way for your family to make history and benefit future generations at the same time. To find out how to honor your own family with a leaf visit the Oklahoma Family Tree Project page.

Krause, A. H. Family

Albert Herman "A. H." Krause was born to Herman August and Mary Ellen (Fletcher) Krause in Bloomington, Illinois, on July 27, 1875.

In 1890 the family moved to Winfield, Kansas, where A. H. helped his father to operate a forty-acre stone quarry, a farm, and a horse-breeding enterprise. He attended Winfield Business College before moving to Houston, Texas, in 1898 to work as a bookkeeper at the Planter Peanut Plant.

He returned to Winfield in 1899 and married Winfield native Alice Louise Burger (1883-1985) in December. They lived with his family until 1900 and then moved to Blackwell, Oklahoma Territory, where Albert built a home and worked in construction and carpentry.

At 4 a.m. on February 3, 1902, the couple's first child, Evangaline, was born. Tragically, she died later that day. Only twenty-three days later, Alice found herself in the midst of the Herman Krause family's move to Comanche, Tillman County, Oklahoma Territory, where she lived in a tent and cooked for ten men "in the middle of nowhere with all kinds of creatures crawling around."

A man named Schofield met A. H. and asked him to build a home in the new town of Gosnell (later, Frederick). After completing the project, A. H. went on to build more than eighty percent of the town's business buildings and many elaborate homes as well as churches and buildings in surrounding communities. He also served on the city council, municipal boards, and service organizations. He was also a prominent Mason. The Krause family grew to include three sons: Albert Roy (1904-1992); Frederick Louis (b. 1909); and Dr. Max Elliot (1914-1982).

The Great Depression took its toll on the family. To help make ends meet, Alice opened a paint and wallpaper store and managed it for ten years. When A. H. died in California in 1942 after a prolonged illness, Alice went to work sorting nuts and bolts for North American Aircraft in Long Beach, California. She worked the graveyard shift so that young mothers could be home at night with their children. She later served as a matron at a boy's home. She was 86 years old and babysitting for three children every weekend when her family convinced her to retire.

Alice was renowned as a gardener and storyteller. Her journal dated back to her arrival in Blackwell in 1901.

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