Petra as a teenager

Petra before first glider ride


b. 20 March 1885 Walnut, Pottowattamie Co., IA
m. (1) 21 April 1909 Alien, Dixon Co., NE
m. (2) late in life to Dr. Roy Charlton Richards
d. 2 July 1984 Ponca, Dixon Co., NE
Buried Ponca, Dixon Co., NE

knitting, crocheting trying everything new reading, meeting new people "

Had been teacher before married. Very versatile lady.


b. 5 Feb 1881 Newcastle, Dixon Co., NE
d. 17 July 1960 Columbus, Platte Co., NE
Buried in Ponca, Dixon Co., NE

Farmer, dairyman
Golf, prize animals

Raised and showed prize livestock- Holstein cattle and Hampshire hogs. Had dairy cattle and they processed, bottled and delivered milk to the area around Ponca, NE.

Set up a golf course in a pasture for practice.

Petra — my mother - by B. Rowenna Schram Erbach

Mother was a romantic and a great story teller. Not having much outlet for this in those heavy responsibility years of a large family, we children received the enrichment - especially those of us who were working by her side in carrying work projects. It may have been picking up cobs in the feed lot to fuel the old Majestic cook stove, or picking or processing foods for winter use, or preparing for company which was kind of a major venture for us as our style of living didn't set us up as always ready. Company was always a celebration. There wasn't a lot of interchange of even "good morning" and "good night", but I shall never forget how good it was to get home from school - or any other experience - often running just to be sure to be the first to tell the news. Later when we'd receive a letter there were those times when we knew she was sharing a tender feeling, a word of appreciation, a word of joy, or sorrow, or a memory both expansive and degrading -empathy seeking for not all memories are of joy and ease. She wove into these bits and pieces her faith, instilled a desire to do what is right and good and mostly kind. Mom didn't get much of women's lib but she sowed the seeds in her daughters and encouraged her son's to be considerate of their wives and to encourage them to do "their own things" as much as they could within family structure.

In later years she was able to fulfill some of her own ideas and hopes.

Charles — my father - by B. Rowenna Schram Erbach

Dad loved to play with his children, with croquet in the summer and bob sledding in the winter. He made the bob sleds and was always the driver. Each person had to hold the feet of the one sitting behind as we went cutting down the hill.

He liked his work with 4-H and enjoyed the older children showing their animals at the tri-state and the County Fairs. He also served on school board, was Sunday School Superintendent, in Farmer's Union etc. He liked to gather the expanded family including his own cousins and families for the 4th of July. It was always a great treat for him to bring home a big watermelon or have a dish pan full of pop corn in winter. He was very proud of his big orchard and each year the cave was full of apples and potatoes.

Remembrances from Wesley and Mildred Schram

It is a mystery to me how my mother accomplished everything in raising her family, carrying wash water, raising chickens, keeping house plants, gathering cobs for fuel, beside all the regular meals, mending, sewing etc. and finally all the chores of a milk business.

I spent a couple years tending the folks' dairy herd in the summer pasture months in the hills by Maskell.

Mildred adds "Mother Petra gave me many good tips on cooking and caring for garden and houseplants.

Remembrances from Donald Schram

My first memory of going to see my grandparents was arriving at the farm and our grandparents were not home. Dad took the screen off so we could get in the house. Another was visiting them at Cedar Falls when Aunt Agnes and Uncle Floyd were married. Uncle Ray took us to the park.

Uncle Renus and family came to visit us at our farm. They came in the two Ford cars. As I remember it, one was a 1914 and the other a 1924. I think it must have been the next year that our family returned the visit. It took us most of one day to make the trip. Wesley and Iola stayed to do the chores. That is how I remember it.

Uncle Harvey and family came to see us more than one time.

Uncle Laurence and Aunt Esther came to see us . It must have been shortly after they were married.

From Iola Schram Pennington

Some of the most vivid memories are of illnesses of our family. Rowenna touched an exhaust of a gasoline engine which was used for washing, I think. It developed into erysipalis and we had to have a nurse come to take care of her. The first nurse we had was not doing very well and could not get her to eat. The second one was smart. She brought in the food and would not let her see it. She had to beg to discover what it was. The nurse kept her curiosity going and eventually got her to taste and eat the food. We could not go in to see her so we talked to her through the window. She would throw things on the floor to get us to come in and pick them up. Of course, we could not do that.

One time Herbert was dangerously sick. I think this time that Aunt Edith came over and helped. The doctor would come and go and we kids were all emotionally involved with a sick brother. I thought I never could bear it if I had to lose one of my siblings. He had scarlet fever, I believe, and went outside too soon and a secondary infection nearly got him. I can stand corrected on facts.

Esther had whooping cough before she was a year old. It was a near disaster for her, but she pulled through. I remember being emotionally involved with a dear little girl having such a hard time. I loved to be the one to take care of her. (I do not remember being very intelligent about it, but she meant so much to me.)

I remember when we were quarantined for various illnesses. We had to burn some kind of disinfectant little lamp sort of things. I risked taking one to school to show the kids there. It frightened me to to do this, but they really wanted to know how it was with us to get disinfected, and I thought they should know.

Clarence had a terrible lung infection as a young lad, and I was not home at the time. Several people at that time died of this ailment. I sent home some "funnies" but the folks said not to do that again for it cost them a lot of postage.

Mother nursed us which gave us immunity to lots of diseases, and not all of us got everything that came along. 1 stopped in at Dickey's and brought home the mumps, much to Mother's dismay. Rowenna got side-aches walking to and from school, but I was a race horse, and would rather dog trot than walk. Sometimes we rode behind old Dick, the beautiful red horse that dad got at a sale. Dad made us a buggy to hold us all and the neighbors also. Wes would back old Dick into the Shaves (sp? we called them shyves, is it shafts? likely not.)

Wes had a lot to do, harness the horse and see that things went as they should. Dick was a naturally lazy animal, and liked to manage the driver, rather than the driver manage him. Herb was the one who could do it. When he got on a horse, there was no monkey business. When I rode, the horse would shy or pull a fast one, but never would they do that to Herb. One day a bull tore the horse's shoulder while he was rounding up the cattle. And speaking of horses, I loved them. I would get the cattle by going out in the field and first climbing up the horse's leg while pulling on the mane, and sometimes using a rope to turn the horse the way I wanted to go. (Just a loop). I finally just patted the horse on the neck for a signal. I could have kept the horse in all day, but I thought it such a shame to deny the horse the outdoors. Also I loved the milk cows, and it would half kill me to have anyone treat them unkindly. My other family members were not always patient. I liked to feel with the cows' feelings. I loved to clean the barn after the cows and to feed them and to see to their comfort. Likewise I liked to wash the separator & see that the milk was kept clean.

When fall came and it would turn cold, we would go out with a lantern and get the chickens from the trees where they roosted and carry them by the legs to the chicken house. I thought it cruel to take one leg of each and pack a whole bunch at once, but that got the job done faster. I think I let others do the one leg carrying. When we had a hen who was a good setter on eggs. Mother would have her do it twice and give the chickens to another hen. I thought that was cruel. I had an old duck who had a nest down by the creek. Mother told me to bring the eggs in a put them under a hen. I could not bear to take those eggs away from so sweet an old duck, but a big rain came and carried the nest away and destroyed the whole setting. I felt personally responsible.

I used to stay and play at Dickey's. Mother told me that there was to be no more of that, but to come straight home from school. Dickey's were about a mile from us and my best friend was Eva, my cousin. They would coax me to stay and I did once too often. Mother met me with a stick!

It was my job to bake cookies for the school lunches. At times I would eat a lot of the dough. One night I heaved all that dough out on the floor because I had eaten more than my stomach thought I should take. I loved to use all shapes of cookie cutters. Mother was so good to let us fiddle around with them. She said Aunt Eva taught her how to bake better cookies, just don't use too much flour, and deftly pick them up. I often burned the last batch. I would go away and forget.

One thing I remember is the cave. Mother would tell me what to bring up and I would go down and bring the needed things. Mother made the most wonderful soup from the vegetables we put down there. Dad would get the wagon out to the garden and the digging would go on and the picking, etc. We were kept alive and healthy by the food in the cave. That is where mother kept her canned food, the meat, the berries and all the wonderful things that kept us strong. I remember how we had a pork barrel north of the house and mother would send me out to cut off the slices of meat she needed. She did not have to call us to breakfast twice when she had pork chops and gravy, and corn bread. That is one of the treats we had at home that I remember the best. We also had ice cream in the summer from the ice which was cut from the dam on the creek. There was an ice house, well packed with straw and chunks sawed from the thick ice.

I remember one March it was so lovely a day and I wanted to wear my straw hat, quite new, I think. Up came a terrible storm and I walked home with little head protection. Kids will be kids. I remember what a joy it was getting the kids ready for church. I liked to wash Anson's and Clarence's heads. They had such nice hair. It looked so fresh to see them all clean. I think it was Rowenna's job to get Ruth ready. She had more of a flair for special things. I remember Dad's hair cuts. He did not like to be reminded how we would like it. One time I got a store hair cut and showed him that it should be like that. I must have been upper grade, 10th or 12th by then. But he always did it the same.

At Grandpa & Grandma Schram's - From Rowenna Joan (Richards) Blum

When we visited the dairy in the early 1940's my brother Roy and I played in the bull's pen. His name was "Inky" and as I remember he was related to a bull of the emperor of Japan. We had a grand time constructing "buildings" with bales of hay in the uphill shelter. We'd go down the hill to the barn where Inky was, climb on the roof, make noise to make him come out then we'd run for our "building". I doubt if Inky was dangerous at all, but we were "city kids" and liked to think we were being brave.

One of the great pleasures there was getting to pick watermelons and cantaloupes from Grandpa Schram's great garden.

In spending two summers (in junior high years) working on the dairy with Grandpa and Grandma I was amazed at their activity. Anson was still home and did a lot of the farming by this time and I remember Grandpa doing the dairy chores, and some farming.

The men brought the pails of warm milk in to the milk house from the barn. Grandma and I put it in a tank on top of the milk cooler which allowed the milk to run down over metal tubes filled with cold running water. Then we'd put it in a bottler, a large metal funnel shaped container with a special gadget on the bottom that allowed milk to flow into the bottle when it was pressed on the top of the bottle. We then put cardboard caps onto the glass bottles which had blue labels saying "Schram's Dairy" on them. Some of the milk was pasteurized or separated, and sometimes we made cottage cheese or churned cream to butter. We cleaned all the cans, equipment and bottles and milking machines in big tubs. Sometimes some "officials" would come and inspect the process to make sure proper procedures were followed. They never gave us any trouble that I remember. Grandpa and I also whitewashed the milking barn with "white-lime" to meet the inspector's approval.

Grandpa kept good records on each cow's milk production. Every time one was milked the pail was weighed and recorded. They had electric milking machines.

Going on the delivery route was fun. The neighbor was hired to drive the route in the pickup. It took me a few attempts to learn the trick of getting off a slowly moving pickup with bottles of milk in my hand!

That farm had beautiful wild yellow roses. Several attempts to bring "starts" from there to Colorado have been dismal failures, but I always think of the dairy farm when I see yellow roses.

Occasionally Grandpa and I would take a golf trip to the South Sioux City course where I mainly tried to keep up with him. Sometimes we would practice in the pasture on the farm down near the Missouri River where he had set up some flags and holes for golf. One time I was going to go there with him and had on a rather skimpy halter. He disapproved of it so I added a layer.

Saturday nights were big nights in Ponca and I usually went to town. Grandma and Grandpa didn't usually go, though sometimes Uncle Anson did and I enjoyed ice cream he would buy if I met him in town.

They also had several "hired hands" and one time I found a bunch of their "girlie" magazines in the back section of the milk house. Grandma didn't think I should be reading those, but was quite gentle in telling me so so I didn't feel they were the desired-forbidden fruit.

Grandma was a very gentle person and easy to be around. She had opinions but knew how to give them without irritating. I admired her enjoyment in trying new things. When plastic table clothes first came out she bought one to see if it was better than the old "oil cloth" when others considered it unnecessary to change.

Many years later in the late 60's, while she was making the rounds visiting her children and grandchildren, she was with us for about 6 weeks. I was called to jury duty and she helped baby sit. When I came home I arrived in the middle of an altercation between two year old Eric and his great Grandmother. He was determined to go out on a balcony which is high off the ground (we live on a steep, rocky hill) and Grandma wasn't comfortable traipsing our hills so didn't want to have to follow him. Finally, she simply said "I love you Eric, but you can't go out there!" and that settled it.

During that visit also, she was watching the Air Force Academy Cadets flying their gliders over our house and commented that that was something she had "always wanted to do". We made arrangements at a private Glider-port and she did it at 86 years of age, loved it and commented how quiet it was up there soaring! She carried around the newspaper clipping about that in her purse for quite a few years.

When we took her to our friends for dinner, they were amazed at her knowledge about the world leaders (current and historical) and what a good guest she was, adding perspective to any conversation. She had read a lot.

Several years after Grandpa Schram died Grandma married my Grandfather from the other side of the family- Roy Charlton Richards (Grandpa Doc) who's wife had died. That was surprising to me as I remember Grandpa Schram as being an avid Democrat and Grandpa Doc as a real Republican. Grandma (Petra) was the diplomat.



b. Newcastle, Dixon Co., NE
m. 2 June 1938 Dakota City, NE

Retired sawmill operator
fishing, woodworking

Member Central Baptist Church in Sioux City, IA

Built his current home in Ponca.

Is always looking for another woodworking project or technique.


b. Dakota City, Dakota Co., NE

quilting, plants, genealogy

Member Evangelical Free Church in Ponca, NE

from Rowenna Joan (Richards) Blum

When our father was in the later stages of Hodgkin's Disease, my brother and I stayed with Uncle Wes in Obert, NE and went to school there. We knew when it was time to go to school by the peal of the bell. All the early grades were in one room and that was a new experience for a "city slicker". The fire escape was a big tube and looked like such fun, but we couldn't play in it during school hours.

Uncle Wes' family had an old wind up type record player and thick records that we considered a novelty. I also remember the "tearful" but fun job of grinding horseradish.

Later Uncle Wes' family moved to a farm near Obert, I believe. We went to visit during threshing and took lunches to the workers. Mildred not only had a large family to feed, she also made good lunches for the crew. The thresher had a long belt from which we were warned to stay clear. It looked like hard work, but what a joyful time!

We rode their horse all day until it finally threw us off. We'd not even stopped to give it a drink! Many hours were spent playing in the dirt where the road cuts left high banks of soft soil. And down the road beyond the house was a place where we found what we thought were valuable jewels because of its geometric shape- quartz. There was no electricity at that house and we had kerosene lanterns after dark-another adventure. There were always lots of kids to play with. And sheep of all sizes as pets- some even got to come in the house. Plenty to do at their house.

Mildred is still the gracious hostess whenever any family activity is going on in Ponca.



b. Ponca, Dixon Co., NE

Missionary Nurse
Travel, Photography

Grad of Immanual Lutheran Hospital Nsg School

B Sc University of Omaha

Served with the Africa Inland Mission working with leprosy control in the Comores Islands off East Africa. The Island she was on was Mayotte and is French (the other islands are independent since 1976).

Her mother thinks she will be home for the June reunion and does not plan to go back.


b. Newcastle, Dixon Co., NE
m. 11 Aug 1967 Omaha, Douglas Co., NE

Home Economic Teacher
sewing, crafts

Teaches high school home economics. Adviser to various extra-curricular home-making clubs.


b. Racine, WI

Biology Teacher
Model railroading. Woodworking

High School biology teacher.



b. Denver, CO


b. Denver, CO



b. Obert, NE
m. 23 March 1963 Omaha, Douglas Co., NE

Organist and Music Teacher
sewing, stained glass


b. 1940 Manitoba, CANADA

Biology Teacher
Running, sailing

Teaching, but also back in school part- time with an emphasis on health & wellness, and looking into entering that field.



b. Dallas, OR

Sr. in School of Music

Will finish at Cleveland School of Music this Spring and plans to finish the graduate program next Spring (violin major).


b. Omaha, Douglas Co., NE

Jr. in high school

cello, computer

Busy with computer contests as well as his cello.


b.Omaha, Douglas Co., NE

basketball, band and orchestra

Plays trombone in band, viola in Orchestra.


b. Omaha, Douglas Co., NE

gymnastics, harp, violin



b. Obert, NE
m. 14 Dec 1963

Music teacher & Executive Secty



County Assessor



b. Sioux City, IA


b. Sioux City, IA

Uni student



b. Obert, NE
m. 23 June 1967 Brunswick, NE

Ministry in several small churches

music, snowmobiling, "spectator" football and other sports

Missionary work with the American Missionary Fellowship includes work with several small country churches, home Bible studies, Youth meetings, 10 summer vacation Bible school locations and summer youth camps.


b. Clearwater, NE

Ministry with Ralph
gardening, music, youthwork

Works with Ralph in their ministry.



b. Black River Falls, WI


b. Black River Falls, WI


b. Black River Falls, WI


b. Black River Falls, WI



b. Newcastle, NE
m. 26 Dec 1966 Denver, CO

Garden Center Manager
water & snow skiing, auto restoration

Have found a very interesting and challenging occupation in Garden Center and Greenhouse Management. Particularly enjoy plant propagation and growing as well as experimenting with different fertilizers. The business however leaves little time to enjoy hobbies.

Life in Oklahoma is very interesting with the competitiveness of College sports i.e. NE vs OK & OSU!


b. Stratton, Hitchcock Co., NE

Nursing student
reading, sewing, water & snow skiing, camping, kids school activities

Student and nursing assistant at Deaconess Hospital, Oklahoma City, OK. Will graduate from Oklahoma State University's Associate Degree Nursing program in Dec 1987. Plans to work in the emergency room or intensive care unit.



b. Omaha, NE

Uni student

Attending Uni of Nebraska—Lincoln studying journalism with an emphasis on news-editorial. Works part time at Spaghetti Works during school. Received journalism award in high school. Is active in church. Restored a 1966 Chevelle which has been driven all over NE, KS, & OK.


b. Ord, NE

Soph- High School

music, dance, computers

Very active in music classes.

Selected as a member of the "Central Attraction" show choir, a dance and voice performance group which has won many awards. Is very knowledgeable about computers, in Advanced math (Calculus) & honors biology. Is active in his church- First Baptist, in all youth and choir activities.


b. Ord, NE

6th grade

gymnastics, swimming, reading, cooking

Was 1975 New Year's Baby of Valley Co.

Is an Honor Roll student with special emphasis on science, in a challenge group. Enjoys pet dog, Skipper.

Is active in Nichols Hills Baptist Church.


b. Ord, NE

5th grade

soccer, skate boarding, latest music video-games, reading, swimming

Is an honor roll student. Active in N. H. Baptist Church



b. Obert, NE
m. 10 June 1972

Heavy duty vehicle specialist
boating, travel, snow & water skiing

Owns (with brother Charles) C & H Heavy Heavy Duty Specialists, Inc. a towing and recovery service and nationwide transporter of wrecked and disabled vehicles and heavy equipment. Also involved in salvaging and rebuilding of heavy trucks and truck components.


b. Larel, NE

crafts, Jaycee Women



b. Omaha, NE

plays hockey


b. Omaha, NE

computer games


b. Sioux City, IA



b. Newcastle, NE
m. 3 June 1972

Boating, Hunting & Fishing


b. Yankton, SD




b. Sioux City, IA

music, volleyball, babysitting, loves to water ski


b. Sioux City, IA

Girl Scouts

babysitting, music, gymnastics



Pioneer Club

bike riding

Loves to play on the sand bars.



b. Ponca, Dixon Co., NE
m. 25 July 1976

Elementary teacher
Piano, needlework, refinishing furniture

Spent 2 years doing short term missionary work in Zaire, Africa.



flying, computer, woodworking

Head custodian for Ponca Public Schools.



b. Sioux City, IA


b. Sioux City, IA



b. Newcastle, Dixon Co., NE
m. 7 June 1975 Tomah, WI

Rebuilds Large Equipment
private pilot, old cars & planes

Sold his sawmill Dec 1986 and built a new building on main street in Ponca. Rebuilds large equipment, does metal lathe work, also hammer, and repairs sawblades for sawmills in the area. He has a 1925 Model T Ford.


b. Fort Eustis, VA

Fabric & Craft shop owner
Christian Women's groups

Opened a fabric and craft shop in downtown Ponca Feb '87.

Does a lot of speaking for Christian Women's Clubs in the Midwest. Is Chairman of the new Ponca Christian Women's Club.

They now have exchange student, Claudia Jaramillo, from Bogota, Colombia, South America who will be with them until July '87. Pam says "It's great to have a teen age daughter".



b. Sioux City, IA

baseball, football, basketball


b. Sioux City, IA

Cub Scouts

Loves jets

Has earned several badges in Cubs.

Insists that he will go into the Air Navy and fly jets off the Aircraft Carriers.