52 Ancestors #6: Mike Hensel
Mike Hensel1 was born in Hungary on January 22, 1878. He married Eva Thomas in 1902; the couple immigrated to the United States in 1904. Their first U.S. destination was the St. Louis, Missouri, area, but by 1910 they had relocated to Hettinger County, North Dakota.2,3
The 1920 U.S. census enumerated Mike and Eva Hensel in the village of Mott in Hettinger County. Mike’s occupation at that time was general work laborer. Mike’s brother, Lawrence (Lorenz), was living with them at the time, working as a salaried laborer. According to the census report, Lawrence immigrated to the U.S. in 1912, but another source indicates he arrived in 1904.4,5
Eva (Thomas) Hensel died in August 1928.6 She is buried at Sunny Slope Cemetery in Mott, North Dakota.7 Mike Hensel relocated to Gladstone, Stark County, North Dakota, sometime after Eva’s death, and married Maria (Arnold) Biel in October 1929.8
The 1930 U.S. census enumerated Mike and Mary Hensel in the “Wolfe’s Addition”9,10 of Gladstone, which is on the north side of the railroad line. Mary’s mother, Anna (Oberding Arnold) Schwartz, was also enumerated in the household. It is likely Anna lived with her daughter Mary and son-in-law Mike after Johan Schwartz’s death in 1925 until she died in 1933.
Mike’s occupation in the various censuses included farmer (1910, age 32), laborer (1920, age 42), none (1930, age 52), and blank/no entry (1940, age 62). Our ancestors were necessarily frugal, but the Hensels must have had some source of income. That, unfortunately, is not documented in the censuses or any other records I’ve located.
The Hensels moved to Dickinson, North Dakota, in 1960, when Mike was about 82 years old. He lived at the Dickinson Nursing Center for about a year before his death in May 1970 at age 92. Mike Hensel is buried at St. Patrick’s Cemetery in Dickinson.11 Maria (Arnold Biel) Hensel died in February 1978 at age 93; she is also buried at St. Patrick’s Cemetery in Dickinson.12
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1 Mike Hensel is the brother-in-law of the Peter Ernest Arnold, the Arnold family patriarch, and the second husband of Peter’s sister, Maria (Arnold) Biel.
2 Undated/unsourced obituary for Mike Hensel, courtesy of Clarice Arnold. Likely source: Dickinson Press, May 1970.
3 1910 U.S. census, Hettinger County, North Dakota, population schedule, Township 136, Range 93, p. 27B, Mike Hensel family; digital image, Ancestry.com
4 Mike Hensel obituary, previously discussed.
5 1920 U.S. census, Hettinger County, North Dakota, population schedule, Village of Mott, p. 1B, dwelling 16, Mike Hensel family; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 31 January 2015); citing NARA microfilm publication Roll T625_1335.
6 Banaters in North Dakota Naturalization Records – A-K. Extractions by David Dreyer of San Francisco. FEEFHS: The Federation of East European Family History Societies (http://feefhs.org/links/banat/bnat-ak.html : accessed 13 February 2015).
7 Mike Hensel obituary, previously discussed.
8 Ancestry.com. U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012. Original data: Find A Grave (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=114982861&ref=acom : accessed 13 February 2015).
9 Mike Hensel obituary, previously discussed.
10 1930 U.S. census, Stark County, North Dakota, population schedule, Gladstone, Heart River Township, p. 3A, dwelling 33, Mike Hensel family; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 31 January 2015); citing FHL microfilm 2341476, Roll 1742.
11 1882-1982 Gladstone Centennial. Dickinson, ND: Service Printers, front matter.
12 Mike Hensel obituary, previously discussed.
13 Undated/unsourced obituary for Maria Hensel, courtesy of Clarice Arnold. Likely source: Dickinson Press, February 1978.