Bio: Shiltz, Fred & Mary
Surnames: Shiltz, Silc, Kozar, Bergant, Bogdonovich, Kebl, Langan, Kath, Malnar
----Source: Family Scrapbook
Fred Shiltz was born (born Fortunat (Nande) Silc) in 1890 in the small village of Slatnik near Ribnica, Jugoslavia. He was one of seven sons in the family. At the age of sixteen, he migrated to America in search of a better life. He came to Pueblo, Colorado and his first job was wheeling cement for one dollar per day. In time he heard of a more promising job in the ore mines of Aurora, Minnesota where he shoveled ore underground for two dollars a day.
In July 1916 at Aurora he was united in marriage to Mary Kozar. She was born in Juro Brod which is located about a mile from Metlika, Jugoslavia. She came to this country in 1912 at the age of 14 and joined her parents and sister in Wenona, Illinois.
During the next ten years their occupations were ore mining and keeping boarders. They had three children Mary, Genevieve and Fred, all born in Aurora. The ore mines started closing down and open pit mining with machinery was started so they had to find other ways to make a living. About this time they heard about Willard from the next door neighbor who was a sister to Mrs. John Bergant of Willard. In March 1926 Fred Shiltz came to Willard and bought at an auction, 80 acres of land with ten acres improved and a one room house for $1775.00.
He then returned to Aurora and with the help of neighbors proceeded to tear down the house they lived in. The lumber including the chimney brick was loaded into a railroad car with the other belongings and shipped to Willard. The cost was $300.00 but upon arrival they were told that the railroad car was overloaded and a door became damaged due to the shitting of the contents, so they had to pay a penalty of another $300.00. The present home on the farm was built from this used lumber.
The family arrived by train in May 1926. They lived in the one room house for one year. In 1927 they rented the Eli Bogdonovich farm about a mile west of the present farm and farmed there until 1931 when a tornado blew down the barn on that farm. The family then moved back to the home farm and built a new barn that same year.
Fred Shiltz Sr. was an active promoter for the SNPJ lodge taking great interest in and attending meetings faithfully.
In 1948 the farm was passed on to their son and the parents moved to a small farm near Greenwood. Mr. Shiltz passed away in 1949. Mrs. Shiltz sold their property in Greenwood and moved to Marshfield. She is now $2 years old and still lives in her own home and also takes care of her tenants.
Daughter, Mary married Louis Kebl. They are r m retired and living in Marshfield. Genevieve married Emil Malnar. They are now retired and living in Marshfield. Fred married Lorraine Kath. They farmed on the home farm until 1953 when they decided to sell the farm and move to Marshfield.
The farm which is located 1 1/2 miles south and 1/2 mile west of Willard has changed owners three times. It is now owned and operated by David Langan and family.
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