Durtschi Home
Excerpts from
Elder David Hirschi's Journals

The Thuner Four
Sitting: Elder David Hirschi
Do any of you know who the three young men are???
Click on the image to see the larger, complete photograph.
Experiences of Elder David Hirschi
which includes the conversion and baptism of some of the the
EDWARD DURTSCHI FAMILY
and many other people who are known to the Durtschis and other relatives.

Compiled and Copyright 1998 by Isabel Durtschi Walker
from the hand written history of David Hirschi


          David Hirschi was born the 13th of August 1866 in Zwischenfluh, Diemtigen Kt., Bern, Switzerland. His mother, Susanna Katharina Werren was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints one year and fifteen days after David was born. David was blessed by Karl Maeser and baptized by Theodore Brandli, 11 April 1878 and confirmed by Gotfried Teuscher.
          David says that most of the time his father was out buying cattle, sheep, goats, furs, hides, butter etc., and made good money but had very little interest in religion. His mother was in the home and there worked with the children. He says, "She loved us and taught us to pray and serve the Lord but father would not accept the Gospel which made things very bad in the family for father was not in tune with the message that the missionaries brought."
          When David was about 8 years old he had to take care of the goats. He took them to the woods and trained them to follow him He says, "This was OK as long as I was alone but sometimes other children wanted me to go with them and have a good time, but as sure as I went the goats followed me and what a time I did have."
          David came to the United States when he was 16 years old, and his sister Rose, two years younger, came with him. John Stucki had sent a letter from Montpelier, Idaho asking David's parents if he could pay the way for David and Rose to come to the United States and when his mother answered the letter saying it would be fine, mistakenly addressed it to John Kunz, also living in the Montpelier area. These two men had lived near the Hirschis in Switzerland and after being converted to the church, emigrated Idaho. John Kunz answered the letter and sent the money for David and Rose to get to the United States, so instead of David working for John Stucki, to pay back the money sent for their passage, he had to work for John Kunz, who, David said, was a hard taskmaster.
          It took several years, but eventually the money was paid back and David was a free man.
         [David's hand written story is in detail and some of the information blends into the history of our grandparents and parents so I am giving information that leads to the meeting of David Hirschi and our people, the Edward Durtschi Sr. family, the Aeschbacher family, the John Hofers and some others in Switzerland and the Waschlowski family in Germany.]
          The day came when David found the sweetheart he married. Her name, Magdalena Wuthrich, was a sweet young woman. David wanted to marry her in the temple but they didn't have the money to take the trip to Logan so they were married by their bishop and later were married in the temple.
         Eventually they moved to the Salem, Idaho area where they lived most of the rest of their lives. David built his wife a little four room log home with a dirt roof and they moved in with their then small family. They lived in what we would call now days, poverty, but David was ambitious, worked hard, getting up early and working late, sometimes working for other farmers to make a little extra money, which they badly needed.
          Most of his farm had to have sagebrush grubbed out before any crop could be planted. As he removed sagebrush he planted grain and hay and other feed for his animals and a garden for food for the table.
          In his own words he said, "Oh, we felt so happy to have a home of our own and we wanted more family." They eventually had twelve children. Many years later he bought a two story frame home that gave more space to live in and was near the church and the school.
          Brother Hirschi and his wife were very generous, kind, loving people. They gave a home to several people who needed help at different times. One sick, old man stayed with them for several years, until he passed away, and Brother Hirschi paid for his funeral even though the family had little to live on themselves. He writes, "Many times I would have liked to have sent off a letter to some of my friends in Switzerland, but we did not have two cents extra to buy a stamp."

Elder David Hirschi
Elder David Hirschi
         There was a fifty acre piece of land near Br. Hirschi's property which he wanted to buy but didn't have any money to buy it with. The property owner needed the money to move away from Salem. He had had enough of grubbing sagebrush and fighting mosquitos. He told Br. Hirschi that the land had a $250. dollar mortgage on it and that he could buy it for $100. cash and pay the mortgage. That sounded like a real bargain, but he told the man, "Even at that price I can't buy it, I don't even have enough money to buy an old setting hen. But give me until Monday--don't talk to anyone about this, and I will see what I can do." As he thought it through he thought of an old friend from Switzerland who had been converted to the church and came to the area to make a home for his family, Christian Aeschbacher. He immediately went to see him. Christian said, "I'm sorry, I can't do it today but give me until Monday and I will have the money for you.
         That was very good news and I went away happy," said Brother Hirschi. Monday came and so did the money, and now he could enlarge his farm considerably.
          David Hirschi was a very spiritual man and he depended much on the spirit to direct him in his affairs. He was often inspired to do something where the outcome was in his favor. Prayer was his anchor. The Lord was his friend.
          In the month of December of 1902, David Hirschi received a letter from Box B, Salt Lake City. That is the box that all calls for missions came from at that time. His family had increased to seven children, the oldest only twelve and the youngest 4 months. He agonized over an answer. He wanted to serve a mission. He wanted to go back to his homeland and teach the gospel, but what of his family, what of his farm and his meager financial condition? After he had given the letter to his wife and she had read it she said, "Yes, you go, that is the only way," and he said, "but what of you and the little children and the money for me to go, because we haven't any?" And she said, "The Lord will open a way." What faith!
          The Lord did open a way. A Brother Fisher came and asked if he could run the 50 acres that Br. Hirschi had just bought, and work it on shares. Money came from the ward. He had helped build a canal to water the Salem area and he was paid with shares instead of money so he was able to sell his shares for more than he had anticipated. Other miracles happened, making the mission possible for him. He had to have enough money for his passage to Switzerland and that he now had. He was officially set apart as a missionary on March 31, 1903 by Rulon S. Wells, an apostle and the 22nd of April, 1903, he found himself in his homeland of Switzerland as a Missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, alone and almost penniless. Elder Levi Edgar Young was his mission president.
          Those were the days when missionaries went into the mission- field, most of them without purse or script. They depended on the goodness of members and friends for a bed at night and food to eat. One had to be a very dedicated missionary to live under those circumstances. This is the way Elder Hirschi lived during his mission. His wife needed what she could scrape together to keep the family in food and clothing. What little she could spare she sent to him, for which he was very grateful because he understood well her condition. Her encouraging letters were looked forward to with great anticipation. She never complained about what she didn't have, she was always positive and grateful for the blessings of our Heavenly Father each day and so thankful that he was able to fill a mission. The members and occasionally those who were investigating the gospel, gave him a little money.
          Sometimes he had a companion and other times he worked alone, walking miles in a day, giving tracts, teaching those who had a desire to listen to the message of the gospel, helping to organize branches of the church and helping keep branches already organized going, giving the Saints instruction and encouragement, and baptizing those who were ready for baptism. He had investigators come to him and ask for baptism, which was always a blessed, exciting time.
          For the first part of his mission he worked in and out of Bern, visiting all the little towns around that city. The people, for the most part, were kind and seldom did he go all day without being invited to eat a meal. But too, there were those who were antagonistic and cruel. One chased him and his companion off his property with a pitch fork, but generally when there was a ruffian wanting a fight, soft spoken words of kindness, mellowed the aggressor and often a good gospel conversation was the result.
          Elder Hirschi was making visits among members and non members and he came to the home of the Hofers in Eggiwil. John, the son, had been converted and was a good member of the church but the mother had not yet accepted baptism because her husband was very much against the church and was angry at John for having been baptized. He made life miserable for the two of them at the very suggestion of going to church or "missionaries." When Elder Hirschi knocked on the door, Mother Hofer answered it. She was so glad to see him but afraid at the same time. Elder Hirschi wrote, "She told me the old man was behind the house and that I should go in and she would fix me some dinner and we could visit a little and I could leave without "the old man" knowing I was there. I was thankful for the food then visited a few minutes with John in his shoe shop and his father didn't know I had been there.
          Twenty-one saints bore their testimonies the next fast day in Langnau. The Swiss loved to sing so there was singing practice every Sunday.
          Elder Buhler was the presiding Elder in Bern at that time and worked with different ones of the Elders so it was that he and Elder Hirschi went visiting and a rain storm came up. They were given refuge from the storm by a family Ramsieir who were good members. They gave the two Elders each a pair of beautiful cuff links.
          He mentions working with Elder Huber and Elder Murri but doesn't give their first names. He tells of going into the Alps and picking "Alpenrosen" - - alp roses.
          In keeping the branch books Elder Hirschi and the other missionaries were able to visit all the members of the branch except one. Elder Hirschi gave much prayer and thought in hopes that somehow they would be able to find this "lost sheep."
          One day, as he was walking, visiting and tracting, he came upon a man sitting in the shade of a tree. Elder Hirschi walked up to him and started a conversation and gave him some tracts. Then the man said, "I am Brother Muster, a member of the Latter Day Saint Church." Elder Hirschi says, "Here I found out where that last member was. Br. Muster started to cry like a little child and said I had been guided by the Lord to find him."
          October came and also a transfer. He, in his new area was able to visit with his sister who lived in Stoken which was a very beautiful place, but he said to himself, "Nothing like America for me, even if Switzerland is beautiful."
          This town of Stoken was very close to his home in Zwishenfluh, the home he left at the age of 18 to go to America. It brought back many happy memories but his mother and some of the family had emigrated to America and his father had remarried and had also emigrated to to the United States so there was nothing left there but memories.
          There was an organized branch in Langnau but it needed much help from the missionaries to keep the group strong. The two missionaries who were assigned there for a time were Elder Bruger, who was the senior companion, and Elder Hirschi. Elder Bruger was soon to be released. In Elder Hirschi's words he says, "Elder Bruger was to make me acquainted with the saints so we went to Eggiwil. There we had to climb up and over a big hill to a family Aeschbacher. The road was very bad and the snow was very deep. When we got there we were about give out. We were received very good and we had for supper potatoes boiled in the peeling, and rutabagas and black bread and we had indeed a number of good times with these people. While we were eating we heard a goat beller under the table. I looked and one of the girls said they have the goats in the cellar."
          It is here that he was called to be the District President by Levi Edgar Young. He had come to participate in a Missionary District Conference. This responsibility added much to David Hirschi's responsibilities and he spent a lot of time in prayer and fasting, pleading for the Lord's help.
          On Sunday, April 17, 1904 he walked to Wimmis and there he met Elder Conrad Gertsch from Midway, Utah. On the 19th he walked to Durenast and visited with Elder Alms Burgener, Elder Eschler and again with Elder Conrad Gertsch. They walked together to the city of Thun where they parted, each for his own area.
          The Bible classes were very fruitful and many were baptized because of the loyal efforts of those faithful missionaries.
          Some time later Julius Gertsch was sent to work with Elder Hirschi who was a dedicated missionary too. [From the writings of Lydia Gertsch McCall, daughter of Julius we read, "Julius F. Gertsch, his mother and sister Lydia joined the L.D.S. Church in Switzerland. They came to Salt Lake from Corgement, Bern, Switzerland and lived in Salt Lake. Later, Julius was sent on a mission to Switzerland. He was one of the missionaries to the Durtschi family. This family joined the Church and, in time, came to Utah and settled in Midway. Julius and Elise Durtschi met again. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple March 27, 1908."]
          Often, Elder Hirschi went to see his sister and family who had not accepted the message of the missionaries. His heart ached because strangers would accept the gospel but his own sister was so cool toward the message he wanted so badly to share with her, but he didn't push. He says, "If she is to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ, the time will come, I will be patient." Even though she would not listen to the gospel message she always fed him and asked him to stay over night with her and her family.
          One day as he was visiting and looking for some one to share the gospel with he says, "We came to a Widow Muzenberger. Her daughter was a real Latter Day Saint but as soon as we got there and she found out who we were, this mother gave us the devil and told us that all we wanted with her daughter was to get her to go to America and there live in polygamy, "and since my girl has belonged to your church, I can't reason with her." She was raging mad and I let her talk until she was through, then she was going outside but I moved my chair to the door and spoke to her, then she began to cry and before we left she had calmed down and seemed somewhat more friendly." [This daughter, Elizabeth, came to the United States with the Edward and Rosina Katharina Durtschi family when they came to America in 1905 and later married Edward Durtschi Junior. They settled in the Teton Basin in Idaho and there their six children were born.]
          As they visited, Elder Hirschi asked his companion, Elder Weber, [another change of companions] if he knew any more friends that he had not yet met in Wimmis.
          Elder Weber said, "Yes, there is a family Durtschi in Obermat via Wimmis, but they would not listen to us.
          Elder Hirschi asked, "Were they unkind to you?"
          "No," said Elder Weber, "But they quit us," and Elder Hirschi said, "I have a strong feeling that we should go visit them."
          Elder Hirschi continues, "We did go see them and had a wonderful conversation with them. Before we left the Mother Durtschi pleaded with me to be sure to come the next night to teach them more of Mormonism. I promised we would."
          The next afternoon the two Elders had a Bible class with a large group of investigators they taught every week and after the class Elder Hirschi went to the Durtschis to keep his promise. He says, "They gave me a good supper and then afterwards we sat around the table with our bibles and we "thrashed out" Mormonism until after eleven o'clock. They asked me to stay with them that night and the next day we continued our discussion for a little while. Mother Durtschi prepared a good breakfast for the family and invited me to eat with them, then I had to go keep other appointments." [This was the Edward and Rosina Katharina Durtschi family.]
          The Elders planned a beautiful Christmas program for friends and members. They decorated a tree and hung it on a swivel from the ceiling so it would turn around. Everyone was impressed with it and with the beauty of the spiritual Christmas program and the good feeling that was felt that evening. Later many friends who had been regular attenders at the Bible class asked for baptism.
          Elder Weber, Elder Gertsch and Elder Hirschi walked miles every day, making contacts, sometimes alone, sometimes in pairs, holding Bible study classes two or three nights a week in different homes and having Sunday Schools every Sunday. The field was indeed white, all ready to harvest. Many were baptized, a few fell away but the work went on. The urge to go to Utah, "Zion" touched many converts after their baptisms.
          The power of the Priesthood was evident as the Elders laid their hands on the heads of the sick, many of whom were almost immediately healed, according to their faith.
          The missionaries had several Branch organizations going in different towns. Problems occasionally came up in a branch where bad feelings or misunderstandings sometimes arose among some of the members. As soon as Elder Hirschi found out about these differences he immediately took action, getting those who were at fault together and tried to find solutions to their problems. On one such occasion Elder Hirschi says, "I called the two that were in trouble in another room and spoke to them awhile. It touched their hearts that they cried like children and they shook hands and forgave one another and came and took me by the hand and thanked me for what I had done for them." Many times he acted as peacemaker, avoiding greater problems.
          An undated entry says, "Elder Steiner helped Durtschis in the hay and in the evening Father Durtschi took us in his buggy to our meeting in Durenast.
          March 16, 1905, I went to Durtschi's and helped them split some wood. When Father Durtschi came home he wanted me to come in the house and speak the gospel to him. In the evening he would not let me go so I had to stay over night. In the morning he was going to the city, Thun to buy a pig and I rode with him to Durenast.
          March 26, 1905 Elder Hirschi says, "We held the first Sunday School in Wimmis and there were 12 present without the missionaries. After Sunday School the girls of the family Durtschi came to me wanting me to go home with them to have dinner, which I did."
          All was not well in the community, for the children told the Elders that the school teacher told them not to take any tracts or books from them nor were they to go to their meetings any more, but the children loved to go to Sunday School and many went in spite of the warning from the teacher. It is possible that this was what triggered the terrible experience John Durtschi, Edward and Rosina's youngest son had one day as he began the school day. In his own words he says; "One morning I went to school with my brother Fred. He was in an upper class. The teacher started to ask questions. He said, "There are some men going around town here with briefcases. Does anyone know who they are?"
          He expected me to blurt out and say, "Yes, they are Mormon Missionaries," but I knew immediately that he was baiting me to give me trouble about the Mormons. Many people hated the Mormons and so I didn't raise my hand to volunteer any answers about who they might be. The other kids said they might be traveling salesmen or other different possibilities.
          The teacher said, "No, they aren't traveling salesmen."
          I thought to myself, "If you know who they are, why do you ask the kids?" so I didn't raise my hand at all. Well it made him angry because I didn't fall into his trap. Finally he gave up and started to teach, which he should have done in the first place. When recess time came, we all marched out to play. I made sure that I had everything in order. I put my books in my book sack and put them in my desk so he would have no reason to find fault with me. Then I marched out and we played. While we were playing I had a hunch I should look up. Our room was on the second story. I looked, and just then the teacher opened the window and threw my book sack full of books out. Then I knew I was really in trouble. I knew I hadn't done anything wrong, and hadn't said anything to give him offense. The bell rang to march us back to class just after the teacher had thrown out the sack. I said to my buddy with me, "I wonder what I am supposed to do with that book sack?"
         He said, "He must have wanted it there or he wouldn't have put it there." I thought that was a pretty good answer, but it wasn't a good one for me. We marched in. When I got to my seat the teacher was coming back from his lectern with his stick. They always had a stick about two feet long to punish the mean boys with. When he came with that I knew what was coming. I froze stiff, I was so scared.
          He screamed, "Why didn't you bring your book sack up here?" I couldn't talk, I knew he was going to beat me. He grabbed me by the collar and pulled me up off the seat and said, "I'll show you!" As he took me downstairs my feet were dangling in the air; he was a big powerful man. He just carried me down there by my neck. When he got me down he shoved my head down by the ground and yelled, "Now pick it up!" Then he really let me have it with the stick as hard as he could. I was black and blue when he got through with me. He dragged me back upstairs, my feet only occasionally touching the floor. He really had me dancing in the air. Then he slammed me down in my seat. I used to love to answer questions and take part in the classroom discussions, but I didn't answer any more questions that day. [John Durschi history.]
         Father Edward, seeing John's condition when he got home from school and hearing what went on, couldn't believe that something like that could happen to a young innocent child. The doctor saw John and heard what had happened. Then he said, "That boy needs to go to the Alps for his health," and he gave the necessary excuse so John wouldn't have to go to school. [At that time in Switzerland, the father had to pay a big fine or be thrown into prison if there was not a good excuse for a child to be out of school.]
         John's experience later helped the family make the decision to emigrate to America. Fredrich, Father Edward's brother and his family had already gone to America and settled in Midway, Utah. Clara, one of Edward and Rosina's daughters also had gone to Midway and married John Burgener, one of the missionaries who had been in Switzerland. Edward, the oldest son, had emigrated to the United States and was in Chicago and later went to Midway too.
         Elder Hirschi goes on with his narration; Father Durtschi had never been to our meetings or Bible class and so when we were about ready to go to the class he was sitting on the sofa without his shoes on, so I went and hunted his Sunday shoes, which were not hard to find, and I put them on his feet, got his hat and took him by the arm and said, "Now, let us go to meeting." He smiled a little smile, then laughed as I was getting him ready but he got up and came with us. His good wife and children were so glad. I really think that was the happiest time in their lives.
          Br. Hirschi writes further, When we came to the house every seat was taken up and we really had a joyful time together.
          There were others who tried to "get rid of the Mormons." At one time while the Elders were having a meeting they were interrupted by a herd of cows with those big cow bells ringing, go down the street, then turn and go past their place of meeting again, and again and again. One of the members went out of the meeting and was able to get a cowbell off one of the cows. About three days later the owner of the bell went to the man to get the bell. Susanna Tuescher told him that he would have bad luck for trying to disrupt the Mormon meeting. Three days later he put that bell on his best cow to take the herd to the alps. To his sorrow the cow died that same day and he said he would never do anything like that again to disturb the Mormons. [As told by Elder Hirschi in his history.]
          Elder Hirschi writes this note, "I had a gospel conversation with Br. and Sr. Hofer. They are very good Saints. Br. Hofer and I gave out more tracts, then came back to the home for supper. Br. Hofer gave us each two francs and he fixed my shoes." [Apparently the missionaries often split and took a member with them to go do their tracting and visiting.]
          [Rosette Aeschbacher Hofer was the first of her family to be baptized. She was baptized by Elder Winterberger in August of 1903. She had been working away from home and met the Elders who taught her the gospel. She invited Elder Winterberger to her father's home in Eggiwil to teach her father and younger sisters the gospel. She married Johannes "John" Hofer on the 24th of April 1909. Her mother had passed away on the 8th of October 1900.]
          Another interesting entry in his journal says, I went from Faulensee to Wimmis. There I helped Durtschis in the hay and in the evening we had a wonderful Bible class. After the class several asked me if I didn't want to baptize them pretty soon.
          Two weeks later he was again in Wimmis to hold Sunday School and meeting. Elder Steiner held Sunday School in Durenast. In the evening Elder Hirschi held a Bible class at Durtschis and stayed there over night. This Bible class was held at the Durtschis often and the Elders were always invited to spend the night. This was a welcome invitation.
          Some of the missionaries who came to work in that area, besides Elder Hirschi were, Elder Weber, Elder George Steiner, Elder Herbert Flamm from Rexburg, Idaho, and Elder Kohler from Utah. [Often Elder Hirschi (David) only gives the last name of the Elder he is speaking of or is working with so I am not able to give full name information on many of these Elders.]
          The Elders were on the go all the time, searching for people who would listen to the gospel message. When Elder Weber and Elder Hirschi visited in Winterthur they met with the Julius Billeter family. This family was converted and baptized. [Julius Billeter is the man who did a great deal of genealogical research in Switzerland for the Durtschis and hundreds of other Latter-Day- Saint families after his conversion to the church.]
          On August 20, 1905, Elder Hirschi writes, Bible class started at two o'clock and the meeting in the evening was very good. There were eleven people who wanted to be baptized. I felt that it would be good to speak to them and explain what a wonderful step they were taking and Elder Steiner was in harmony with me. I then called them together and we surely had a nice meeting. The weather was so pretty and the water in the lake was warm and the moon was shining. We all walked to the beautiful Thuner Lake, which wasn't far off. When we all got on the bank of the lake we had a little prayer, then I baptized these friends and all felt so happy.
          Afterwards we all went to our little hall and confirmed them, who were as follows:

Rosina Katharina Durtschi   Wimmis      Kanton   Bern
Alfred Durtschi                "          "       "
Fritz Durtschi                 "          "       "
Eliza Durtschi                 "          "       "
Emma Durtschi                  "          "       "
Louise Amstutz                 "          "       "
Maria Whitwer                  "          "       "
Bertha Gross            Hinterengenstein  "       "
Rosa Bahler Zender         Watenwil       "       "
Rosa Zender                    "          "       "
Emma Ozender                   "          "       "
          "Then they all left to have their night's rest."
          On August 31, 1905 Elder Hirschi makes this entry, I was visiting friends and Saints in the Wimmis area and on the way Father Durtschi met me with a bundle of hay on his back. He laid the hay down and shook hands with me, then we both sat down on the hay and I started a gospel conversation with him and I had my Bible, Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants with me and we spent over an hour discussing different principles of the gospel. Then he wanted me to go back with him and eat supper with them. After supper we all walked to Wimmis to the Bible Class. We stayed with the Durtschi's that night.
          Another interesting entry one day later, Father Durtschi and his son Alfred, wanted to go to the Simenthal to get their cattle from the Alps. I went with them on the train as far as the Heisdrichbad station, Oei, which saved me much time and a few miles. From there I walked to Bachlen to visit August and Eliza Hahlen. Then I walked back to Oei and got the Book of Mormon which I let a lady have for almost two years and she never read it.
          Sept. 8, The Bible class was real good which we held last night in Wimmis. Today I had to go to the Oberland to see my good "sheep" there but the time was short and I had no help. I walked to Rudlen, Aeschi, Interlaken, Matten, Gsteigweiler and made visits every place and stayed over night with the friend Hasler and I was very tired.
          Sept 9, I had a good night's rest. I walked to Lauterbrunnen and called on family Graf, then I went to Wangen and Schildwald where I stopped overnight with Von Almens and they were glad to see me once again. Sept 10, I visited Fuchs and Gertsch. In the afternoon we had a very good time together in Von Almens house, speaking about the gospel.
          In the evening the daughter of Von Almens, Mari Anna, asked me to go with her to see the goats. About three fourths of a mile away there were about twelve or thirteen little stables about five feet high on the mountain side, big enough for the goats. Then all at once a man came from the cliffs blowing a horn to notify the people that he was coming and brought about 150 goats and almost every one had a bell on its neck and then came about 30 people to milk those goats in those little stables. That was something to see!
          Sept. 11, I walked to Geisteigwiler and when I came around the point, Mrs. Hassler was standing on the porch looking for me and as soon as she saw me she came to meet me and said, "I knew you would come. I had that feeling and I have cooked dinner for you and I have been waiting for you since twelve and now it is about two o'clock." When we came in the house there to my surprise I found that the table was set just for one and the good dinner was on the oven covered with a clean cloth.
          Elder Hirschi only had a few weeks left of his mission, which was a two and a half year mission. On Sept. 17, 1905 he writes, I needed to go to Langnau to take charge of the work today and the meeting was well attended. They all wanted to see me before I left for the good America. Almost all of them wanted me to eat with them but I could not be all over!
          After the evening meeting the three sisters Aeschbacher wanted me to go with them to Eggiwil. This was a three hour walk over a mountain and I did want to see their father Christian Aeschbacher before I left for home. We got there at one o'clock in the morning and when he saw me he cried like a child. We had a good, short visit together. It was too bad that the time was always so short.
          [These three sisters all came to Zion, first came Lena. She worked 2 years, saving her money to help Ida come while Ida stayed in Switzerland saving her money so she could go to America to be with Lena. Rosette and John Hofer, with the help of the two sisters and their, by that time husbands, came to Logan in 1923.]
          Ida Aeschbacher became the wife of Alfred Durtschi. They met in Salt Lake, were married and had 5 children, settling near the mountains on the east side of Teton Valley, Idaho. Lena married Fredrick Duersch who was taught the gospel in Germany and was baptized and emigrated to Salt Lake City where he and Lena met. They had ten children. They too, eventually settled in Teton Valley, just west of the Grand Teton Peaks.
          Rosette married John Hofer in Switzerland. They also emigrated to Utah and settled in Logan in 1923. She died of cancer the first of February, 1925 just two years after they arrived in Logan. They had no children. John continued his trade as a shoemaker in Logan. Father Aeschbacher stayed in the little home in Switzerland and continued to assist the missionaries in their work.
          The influence Elder Hirschi had, as a missionary, on hundreds of lives, can never be measured.
          --Now back to the main story--Brother Hirschi had to leave this Aeschbacher family after breakfast to keep appointments he had made previously. He knew that perhaps he would not get to see them again before he went home and he left with a touch of sadness in his heart.
          Sept. 24, Just as I was going to open the Sunday School, Elder Mauss came and wanted to give us a visit, which made me very happy. We had a nice Sunday School and at two P.M. our meeting was wonderful. The room was full and many had to go in the kitchen for a place to sit.
          The Mission President sent Julius Gertrsch to Elder Hirschi, for, says Elder Hirschi, "I was very short on missionaries. We started for the Simenthal. We stayed in Wimmis over night and held a Bible class at the family Lortscher and then we went to visit Sister Kunz who had a son in Rexburg, Idaho."
          [Mentioning Sister Kunz, I might add that many Kunz and Miller families settled on the southwest end of Teton Valley which is called Cedron. Samuel Kunz was a Patriarch and gave many of the Swiss people Patriarchal Blessings, among others.]
          Sept. 25, "Just when I took my place at the table to eat breakfast, here came Miss Karolina Durtschi, a friend, and daughter of Father Durtschi and laid four pieces of gold before me on the table for tithing.
          The next day when we came back to our room there were Elder Steiner, Mauss and Springer who wanted to see me and say goodbye to the friends and Saints who wanted to leave on the twenty eighth of September for Zion. These were families Lortscher and Durtschi, just the ones where we always held our meetings, "but the Lord will surely open some place for us to have our meetings if we are faithful in our duties and listen to his prompting," says Elder Hirschi.
          Elder Hirschi goes on, We love these families. We held a meeting at the Durtschis which lasted two and a half hours and every place was taken up and many non-members too. After the meeting we sang songs of Zion and entertained ourselves until morning. The same time, Father Durtschi sat by a table and had his money on it and made four separate piles, two for his two daughters, (Rosa and Karoline) for they were not going to America yet, one pile for him and then another one. Then he stood up and took one pile in his hands and came to me and said, "Brother Hirschi, this is for you. I looked in his eyes and said, "Brother Durtschi, I will not take that money. You take good care of it and when you get to Zion don't trust everybody for in Zion there are some who are just as bad as some we have here. You will need it there." Then I saw tears rolling down his cheeks and he put the money back on the table and took a five Fr. piece and came to me and said, "Well, you will take this," and I said, "Yes, I will take that," and we hugged each other."
          The Durtschi family, with the exception of Rose and Caroline left Switzerland on the 30th of September, 1905. Edward Junior was already in the United States as was Clara who emigrated some time earlier and had married John Burgener, a missionary she had met while on his mission in Switzerland.
          Elder Hirschi continues, I went to Gerigs. Their girl asked me to baptize her. The family was packed, ready to leave for Zion. I helped them with their trunks and in the afternoon Elder Rindlisbacher and I made some visits and in the evening we packed his trunks. They had to be sent a week ahead. He too, was going home to America and his family, for he had finished his mission and had been released.
          The next day we went to the river. There I baptized the girl Ida Gerig. When I walked in the water she was so glad to be baptized that she jumped in the water and laid in it. I raised her up, then baptized her. We went back to the home and Elder Kocheraur confirmed her.
          Many entries went something like this, "We, [Elders and Saints] went to our little hall and held a wonderful meeting. Every seat was taken. In the evening we had a good singing practice. [I believe that Elder Hirschi realized that through song and the words of the hymns, hearts are mellowed and the spirit can be touched, often more effectively than preaching alone, for after his meetings there was always "Singing Practice."]
          As Elder Hirschi prepared to go home he wanted to make visits to many of the dear friends he had associated with and loved. One place was to the Rudolph Kaufmans. His wife Rosa is a daughter of Father Durtschi. Elder Hirschi writes, "We held a Bible class there but her husband wouldn't come in the room. He wanted to stay in the kitchen, so I went out and took him by the arm and led him to the table right next to me and we had a good Bible class. He asked me to stay with them overnight.
          September 29th he received this message from his Mission President, George F. Bailiff:

Schweizerischen und Deutschen Mission
der
Kirche Jesu Christi
der Heiligen der Letsten Tage


          Elder David Hirschi
Durrenast,

Dear Brother,

I take pleasure in notifying you that, if your affairs in the mission and your branch affairs are in perfect order you will receive your honorable release from this mission in time to sail for home with the boat sailing October 27, 1905 from Liverpool [on the White Star Lines]...

          Elder Hirschi received his release and President Heber J. Grant asked him to be in charge of the Saints who were emigrating to America. He wasn't very excited about this assignment. He had to see that everyone leaving had the right papers that were necessary to leave Europe and to enter the United States, had the money necessary to enter the United States and see that all the baggage for his group had the proper identification and seals. It was a big job. He knew it would be, but he survived it all. He had 65 persons in charge and they arrived in Boston on November 5, 1905, all in good condition.
         His wife was waiting for him at the Salt Lake train station about the 14th of November. He does not give the exact date except that he says that on November 16, 1905 he and his wife went to the temple and on the 18th of November he says, "We returned to my good home and found everything in better order than I expected."
          He was surprised though, when he got home and found that his wife and family had done all the farm work because Mr. Fisher had not lived up to the bargain that he had made with David before leaving for his mission, which was, that he would run the 50 acres on shares, but no shares ever appeared, so his wife and children, small as they were, ran that 50 acres besides their other farm and had never told Brother Hirschi. What a wonderful, precious companion, not wanting to worry her husband about things at home because he was on a very important errand, serving the Lord. How difficult that must have been for her and for her 12 year old son, probably 13 by that time, and for the younger children. I'm sure our Father in Heaven was blessing them day by day too, as He was blessing the work of Elder Hirschi who was so far away from them.
          Sister Hirschi could send very little money to her husband for there was not much coming in and and what did come in had to go to pay bills--taxes, etc. So Elder Hirschi literally left home without purse or script as most of the early missionaries of the church did. Can we put ourselves in their place, not knowing if we would have a bed to sleep in at night or a meal the next day. We can be so proud of our ancestors who fed the missionaries and offered them a bed at night and the many others who were so kind and helpful in so many ways so the work of our Heavenly Father could go forward.
          While David was gone, the sugar factory was put into operation in Sugar City and there were sugar beets being grown all over the valley. Having no money and his family barely getting along because of the sacrifices that had to be made, with husband and father gone for two and a half years, he got a job shoveling beets for twelve hours a day. He says, "This was indeed a hard job for a man who had done very little manual labor for two and a half years. He went home 'dog tired', rested a little while after his work at the factory and then went to work helping his boys on the farm.
          In his journal he relates, "In May of 1907, Alfred Durtschi and his brother Edward from Midway, Utah, came with a carload of cattle. [By this time the railroad had been built to Rexburg so they were able to bring the animals that far on the train.] Br. Hirschi goes on, "They came to me and asked me if they could stop with us overnight. I let them put their cattle in one corner of my field and early the next morning, after breakfast, they drove them up to Teton Basin. They had bought a place near Driggs. They wanted to pay me for letting them put the cattle in my field but I told them to call it square.
          In July, when I had my hay down, ready to haul, here come the brothers with a team and pitch forks, and a brand new hay rack and were ready to haul my hay. They built the rack on the road coming to Salem.
          I baptized Alfred Durtschi, his mother, Fritz, Elisa and Emma in Switzerland on the 20th of August 1905.
          The Hirschi family lived in their 4 room, small, dirt roofed home while raising most of their children, then they were able to buy a six room, nice, frame house for $900 dollars. David says, "This little home made it handy for the children to go to school and to church."
          One Sunday a newly returned missionary came to visit at church. Br. Hirschi asked if anyone had asked him to stay over night. He said, "no", no one had asked him, so Br. Hirschi asked him, even thought they had to stretch a sheet on a wire, to separate beds that were in the room. Br. Hirschi says, "I was really surprised to find out that at home the Latter Day Saints would let a missionary stand in the cold.--In Switzerland I never had to ask for a bed and seldom did go without an invitation. What a difference and seldom did we go hungry."
          On the 15th of August 1910, their first son, David, went on a mission to Switzerland.
          The Lord blessed this family greatly, financially and spiritually, and with twelve fine children. He says, "My wife and I were certainly blessed with good children. They always attend meeting and Sunday School and all of them are ready to help wherever they can.
          A sad time for them was when their son, John was called to the military service. He had to report on the 25th of June 1918, and was sent to California for training. By September he was in France. This worried this fine family a great deal.
         In 1919 the family was caught up in the flu epidemic. The whole family was down with it except David. He, at times could hardly drag himself around. He became so tired caring for the needs of his family and doing all the necessary work on the farm. At times he felt he could not move another inch, but the Lord blessed him, giving him the strength he needed to bring them all through that awful ordeal. He never got the flu. Finally David says, "They all got well and I know the Lord heard our prayers and I give him the honor."
          Financially, the family prospered. David received his call to go on his second mission October 28, 1920, to the Swiss, German mission, signed by President Heber J. Grant. January, 1921 found him and five other missionaries in Paris. The American consul told them they didn't need a visa passport from them so they went to the German consul. "They were very nice until they found out that we were Mormon missionaries, then the tables turned," says Elder Hirschi. No way were they going to let them into either Germany or Switzerland. Elder Hirschi could have gone into Switzerland because he was born there and knew the language but the other five were not to get a visa into either state and he couldn't leave them alone. He was the only one who could speak German. He had been given responsibility of getting those missionaries to their destination of Berlin and he was determined to get them there.
          In his own words, Elder Hirschi says, "I told the officials they didn't know who the Mormons were. I told them that after the war that President Valentine of the German Mission had sent a lot of food for the poor in Germany, and in America the Mormons had gathered carloads of clothing, bedding and other necessities for the relief of the suffering. That didn't touch the officers. Finally Elder Hirschi said, "If you can't give us a two year visa, give us a year." "No" was still the answer. "Then give us six months." Again the answer was "no." "Then give us 14 days," demanded Elder Hirschi. Finally consent was given for a 14 day pass and a 150 franc payment and the missionaries got into Germany.
          They arrived in Hamberg and were greeted by a wonderful group that was so glad to see Mormon Missionaries again. It had been several years since the missionaries had all been called out of Europe. The Saints were eager to make use of the Elders and tried to teach the new Elders the language and it wasn't long until there was progress. Elder Hirschi took each Elder at a time to help him learn the art of being a good missionary. They started right out having Bible classes, helped the Saints get fully organized again and gave them support and encouragement, This was a devastated, discouraged people after the war and they were so glad to have the missionaries back in their midst.
          There in Berlin they found a family by the name of Waschlowski, where they started to have Bible study classes. Besides the family, there were 8 friends there and that evening they had a large meeting with 274 present. "The Germans were eager to hear something besides war," says Elder Hirschi.
          There were still partly organized branches there and they had tried to encourage and help each other during the terrible time they had been through but they needed the "new life and encouragement" of the missionaries.
          On Monday, May 16, 1921, three branches joined together for a party in the afternoon and in the evening they had a meeting and at 9 o'clock they had a baptismal service. This evening was the baptism night for the Waschlowski family, Auguste, the mother, Paul Karl and Augusta's children, Gertrud, Ernst, Otto and Heinz.
          [Auguste was the second wife of Friedrich Albert Waschlowski. His First wife, Wilhelmina Kostrezewa is the mother of Bruno Fred and Paul Karl. She passed away in July of 1905 and then Friedrich married Auguste. Friedrich passed away while a soldier in the German army. All the boys changed their names from Waschlowski to Weston after they emigrated to the United States and settled in Teton Valley. Gertrud married Edward Nephi Berg and settled with him in Salt Lake.]
          That evening Elder Hirschi baptized 13 persons, 25 were baptized that night. [I notice that according to family records, Bruno Fred was not baptized until June 12, 1922.]
          Here in Germany, Elder Hirschi was really a busy missionary. He had to take in tithing, make receipts for it and for fast offerings, keep all the branch books up to date and there were always reports he had to send in to the mission office. Every month he got 1000 Marks to distribute among the poor saints. His hardest decision was to determine who needed help the most. The war had left so many destitute. He took care of the widows first and then others with great need who had large families to feed. He prayed and fasted so he could make the right decisions.
         He had to preside over a branch and see that everything was working well and in between he went tracting, finding possible teaching opportunities and assisting in choir practice. Elder Hirschi had a beautiful voice and loved to sing. He also had to help resolve many differences among his flock.
         Bible class was a regular at the Waschlowski family home with many members and friends. Sister Waschlowski invited him to eat with them often and he was glad for the invitation. Here in Germany, as in Switzerland, on his first mission, he was invited out often to eat a meal with members and friends.
         August 13 was Elder Hirschi's birthday. The members and friends wanted him to stay home that day and many came with food, flowers, chocolate and hand made gifts that were beautiful. He said he'd never had such a birthday. Some even gave him some money, which was very scarce in Germany at that time.
         At one Bible class they had 80 members and 24 friends present. This is the largest study class they had.
         A young missionary, Elder Sheets became very discouraged and told Elder Hirschi he wanted to go home and learn more of the gospel and then return to finish his mission. He was told by Br. Hirschi that if he went home he would never return to finish his mission and he would not study the gospel and in time, when he should receive his honorable release, he would feel very bad. Elder Sheets went back to work with a seasoned missionary and turned out to be one of the most faithful.
         Everywhere Elder Hirschi went he approached people and started a gospel conversation. Most people listened and were touched by his sincerity and his knowledge of the gospel.
         One evening as the Elders were having a meeting, they were interrupted by a young lady who said that her little brother had been badly injured when a 500 pound steel door fell on him, would the Elders please come and administer to him. Elder Hirschi took Elder Radichel with him and left the other missionary to continue the meeting.
          The boy was unconscious and the doctor told them that he had a fractured skull. Elder Radichel anointed the boy and Elder Hirschi sealed the anointing. The next day when the Elders went to see how he was, Elder Hirschi says, "The boy's mother told us that when we left the room and were going down the stairway, the boy came to and started to talk to us.
          It is funny that his and his companion's legs weren't worn off into stumps, for they walked miles and miles almost every day, encouraging the Saints and making new friends and contacts.
          Elder Hirschi worked in Berlin for over a year and then he was transferred to Basel, Switzerland and soon after to Burgdorf. This change had to be made because he could not get an extension on his visa. There he had the opportunity to work with Rudolph Rindlisbacher [also from the Salem, Idaho area, who had been converted in Switzerland and now was on a mission back to his home- land.] On his first mission, Elder Hirschi had baptized Rudolph's wife to be, as a young girl. [Bertha Gross was baptized the same evening as Rosina Katharina Durtschi and four of her children were baptized. She emigrated to America in the group of 65 that Elder Hirschi was responsible for, to get them to Salt Lake City. She later became the bride of Brother Rudolph Rindlisbacher and some years later they became the grandparents of Edward Rindlisbacher. Rudolph and Bertha Gross, Rindlisbacher's grandson, Edward Rindlisbacher and Alfred Durtschi's oldest son, Arnold, worked as missionary companions in Switzerland in the late 1930s in some of the same areas that Elder Rindlisbacher and Elder Hirschi worked as companions in the early 1920's.]
          Elder Hirschi returned to Langnau and Eggiwil and evidently he and my Uncle John Hofer went tracting together for on one page of his diary Elder Hirschi says, "After breakfast, Bro. Hofer and I went to Sumismat to visit families Sigmiler, Wuthrich and Widmar. Then we took the train to Langnau and visited seven families and invited them to a meeting." In another place Br. Hofer sent a letter to Elder Hirschi saying he had made arrangements for a meeting in Oberdiesbach for Wednesday night.
          On the 13th of January, Elder Hirschi got a letter from his son Le Vell, the first he had received from him, now eleven years old. That evening he wrote a letter to his son and one to Millie his daughter.
          He often went to the home of the Hofers and had supper with them and apparently Rosette Hofer did some of the missionary's washing for them because when Elder Hirschi returned to the apartment there was a bundle on the table. It was his washing that Sister Hofer had sent. He also makes notations that "Han Hofer fixed my shoes for me." And possibly the shoes of other missionaries too.
          During this period of time, David Hirschi suffered terribly with boils on his neck. They caused him a lot of pain, sometimes almost more than he could stand. The doctor couldn't seem to help him. He used cans of salve the doctor gave him. Often he had to stay in his apartment because he didn't feel good enough to even visit with anyone. When he was using the salve he looked terrible and smelled worse because of the odor of the salve. It took quite awhile before this "plague" left him and he was so happy when it finally did. He was eager to get back to steady work. He took his calling as a missionary very seriously.
          This is the first time in his entire life history that he has complained about any kind of illness that kept him from working and doing his duties as a missionary.
          July 24, 1922: Elder Hirschi's brother, Jacob was on a mission in Interlaken and he had the opportunity to visit with him for a little while at a conference in Bern and again in Interlaken. Later he had the opportunity to work with him for several days.
          This visit was good for him because he had become very discouraged, due to the fact that he couldn't go out to work like he so much wanted to, but his neck, head and face were getting better and life was looking more rosy.
          Later he had the opportunity to work several days with his brother Jacob again. They visited a family Durtschi that was still in Switzerland but he doesn't give the first name. He expresses how much they enjoyed the visit together. [It would be nice to know just who this family Durtschi is.]
          They also visited with their sister Lina and her daughter. Had supper with them then went to visit the family Ramseier, staying over night with them. In the morning they had breakfast and discussed the gospel again until 11 then they had to Leave for other appointments they had made.
         On Saturday, August 31, we helped our sister Lina mow some of her hay by hand. The people looked at us from all directions and wondered that we could mow like that. (They used a hand sickle.) Then we helped spread the hay that had been mowed the day before. At two o'clock we left our sister and I did speak to her about the gospel until the tears rolled down her dear, wrinkled face.
          Elder Hirschi says, "I was so happy that she would finally listen to me teach her about the gospel." It was such a joy for him to have his brother Jacob with him at this time. His regret was that there was such a little time left of his mission.
          Elder Hirschi was a very knowledgeable missionary in the gospel. He also had a loving way about him that excited people to listen to the message he had for them. They listened for hours to him teach at their Bible classes, and, as I've probably said before, he and his companion seldom had to fix more than breakfast because the saints and investigators invited them to lunch and dinner.
          On August 20, 1922, Elder Hirschi received a letter from Fritz Durtschi, son of Father Edward Durtschi. The letter came from Chicago, saying that he was rooming with one of the converts he, Elder Hirschi, had baptized in Switzerland. This room mate pulled out a picture taken in Switzerland and there was David Hirschi. Fritz took the picture, looked at it and to his astonishment, there was a picture of the buddy he was rooming with at the side of the same missionary, Elder Hirschi, that had baptized him. Fritz said, "Why that is the missionary that baptized me 20 years ago," so we live here together, two of your converts.
          We just can't imagine the memories that must have flooded Elder Hirschi's mind at reading that letter from Fritz Durtschi.
          On Wednesday Nov 22, at 12:30 he took the train to Interlaken and that evening they went to the family Durtschi. He says, "There we were received very well." He and his companion held a good meeting, and afterwards a friend by the name of Paul Friedli asked Br. Hirschi to baptize him. This was in an organized part of Interlaken and he had to be told that the Elders of the branch would be happy to baptize him. He asked to go to Zion with Br. Hirschi.
          Friday Nov. 24th Elder Hirschi says, Today I had a big day's work on my hands. Elder Solomon and Sister Durtschi walked to Faulensee where we visited family Mulemater. There I had a good time with them. They gave us a number one dinner and we stayed with them until 4:20, then we went to family Mutzenberg and also to the brother and sister of Sister Mutzenberg and had a good time with them. [Could this be a relative of Elizabeth Mutzenberg who married Edward Durtschi?] Then I walked to Wimmis, Reutigen, Stocken and at 9 I surprised my sister. We visited until one in the morning. I was very tired.
          I wanted to go see the Hofers. I found him in his shoe shop making wooden shoes. He gave me some milk and cake and he said that his wife went to get a tooth pulled. We went to Hofer's brother and his wife. There we talked gospel until I was hoarse. They asked me to come again and Brother Hofer told me that no one could speak to them about the gospel like I could. That made me very happy. I stayed with them until 4:30, then I had to leave.
         Elder Hirschi was released from his second mission February 28, 1923. He says, as he prepared to board the train to go to the ship, "Now here I am, I have to go on that big journey all alone, not even a missionary or a Saint to stand by my side and on my first mission I had a company of 65 to take to Salt Lake." He boarded the ship, Minnedosa--going home after two and a half more years of teaching the gospel.
         He says, "I hope the Lord will lead and guide me as He has done in the past."
         Thursday April 7, he arrived in Salt Lake City. There was no one to meet him at the train station so he took a street car to the Nydegger family and there, to his surprise, was his wife, Magdalena. She was overcome with joy to have her dear companion home again with her and the feeling was mutual.
         Often he spoke of how he loved receiving word from home and how he worried when he didn't hear for a period of time.


Post log:

This has been a most wonderful experience for me [Isabel] to read this very special record that Brother Hirschi kept for his family and for the generations yet to come, not to mention those of us who have learned so much more about our parents and ancestors who were born in Switzerland and Germany. What a rich, precious heritage we have. How very blessed we are to belong to families who could feel within their souls that the gospel message Elder Hirschi and the other missionaries taught them was true. They knew without a doubt what they needed to do when they heard this sacred message.
          We who are of the lineage of the wonderful people who accepted the gospel in foreign lands should be so very grateful for the sacrifice they made in leaving their homeland and coming to the great country of America where they had to start their lives over again. My father [Alfred Durtschi, son of Edward Durtschi Sr.] often said, "We should not call what we did a sacrifice for receiving the Gospel into our lives was the greatest blessing that could ever come into the lives of humankind." He said, words to the effect, after he had studied and prayed, that he came to know that, yes, it was true. He said, "We thought we had the light but when we received the Gospel light, the other light was darkness to us."
         May we as progenitors of these wonderful, precious ancestors realize how important it is to live our lives the very best way we know how. We must live the principles of the gospel every day of our lives so that we will be worthy of meeting those dear ones who have gone ahead.
          The world is full of wickedness and is becoming worse every day. Satan is pulling at us from every avenue there is possible to pull. Let us stand firm. Let us be found in places where the Spirt of our Heavenly Father will be able to touch us and direct our paths to that Eternal Home with our Heavenly Father and all our loved ones.
          I know the gospel of Jesus Christ is true. I know that if we live it we will be happy. I know that our Savior's sacrifice on the cross was for us, that if we will repent of our sins we will be forgiven. This is His promise. I know our Heavenly Father loves us with a Holy love that we will not really be able to understand until we meet Him again.
          May you all be happy in your lives and bring happiness into the lives of others and may we all be found worthy of the many wonderful blessings our Heavenly Father bestows upon us every day.


          I thought perhaps you might like to know how I was fortunate enough to find this information that we haven't known until now about our ancestors in Switzerland. I was visiting with Millie Hirschi Mortensen one day and the thought came to me as we were talking, "I'll bet she has a history of her father who was instrumental in bringing some of our ancestors into the church while on his missions in Switzerland and Germany." So I asked her if she had a history of her father's mission experiences. She came out with a large Book of Rememberance size, two inches thick, of his history. I then asked her if I could read it and she graciously let me borrow it. It is handwritten but had been re-copied so many times that some was hard to read.
          It took some time to get through the whole thing but was worth every minute I spent. As I read I copied out all that had anything to do with the Durtschi family and others that the family is interested in who have joined the family and then worked into it what I have compiled. Wilson helped me so much by being patient with me and doing cooking etc, so I could read and write.
          I was so thrilled to read many interesting things about our ancestors that we hadn't known before.
          Hope you enjoy it, as much as I have enjoyed finding these precious bits of our parents, grandparents and great- grandparents. I'm so excited over being able to enlarge our understanding and get better acquainted with those dear ones who are so important to us.

      Love,

      Isabel D. Walker


Durtschi.com Admin: mark@durtschi.com

Page Updated: 1 Apr 01