Story written by Ralph Frederick BEACH:
Once upon a time a young man sailed on a boat from Europe as theship's
doctor. This young man of German descent was Francis Krafft (1808-1885).
Also on that ship was his young wife from Alsace, France. Her name was
Katherine Westerman. They had married in Germany and had 3 children bythe
time they sailed in about 1841.
They settled on a farm between Stevensville and Fort Erie, Ontario.They
were known to the younger Krafft family as "Gross Father" and "GrossMother."
This younger family are the eight boys and three girls who were thechildren
of their son, George Franklin Krafft (10/28/1841 to 6/19/1914) and Minerva
Alice Tripp (8/26/1848 to 2/24/1933). The graves of Gross Father andGross
Mother Krafft are found in the cemetery of St. John's Church which is the
little white church about halfway between Fort Erie and Stevensville.
Also, one upon a time (about the same time) there was a group of
Pennsylvania Dutch know as Mennonites who decided to move from theLancaster,
Pennsylvania, area to Canada in 1788. Among them was the grandfather ofAbram
Beam who had a daughter Sarah Ann (1826-1912). She met an Englishman bythe
name of William Tripp (1817-1899). They were married on September 3,1845,
and they had a daughter Minerva Alice (8/26/1848 to 2/24/1933).
These two young folks, George Franklin and Minerva Alice, met atschool in
Stevensville. They were married on March 7, 1871, and later joined the
Mennonite Church. They bought a farm on the Bowen Road near Stevensville,
where they lived from 1871 to 1877 and where the following children wereborn:
William 3/24/1873, James Lewis 12/11/1874, Sarah Ann 8/5/1876.
In 1877 this young family moved to a new farm near Erie Beach, Ontario.
Later the road upon which they lived was named in their honor, the "Kraft
Road." The following children were born in this home: George Franklin
8/5/1878, Charles H. 10/17/1880, R. Harvey 10/11/1882, Ivy M. 10/30/1884,Fred
& Florence 2/1/1887, Norman 12/31/1889.
For additional income to support this family, father George had a milk
route in the summer to supply milk to the summer residents on the lake.
In 1890, the family moved to the red brick house on Crescent Road. The
baby of the family, John H., was born here on June 6, 1891.
William, the oldest son was married to Ida Morgenstern and took overthe
farm on Krafft Road (the old homestead). In 1919 this family moved to
Stockton, Illinois, to work for the Kraft Cheese Company.
Ivy May Krafft was married to Norman LeRoy Learn. William Krafft soldthem
the east section of the farm on the other side of Krafft Road. Many ofthe
Learn family are still living on this property.
Sarah Ann married Arthur Rose who owned a farm nearby.
Harvey Krafft married Flossie and lived in a house on the other sideof the
barn at the Red Brick Farm on Crescent Road.
Florence Krafft married Albert Beach and took up residence in Buffalowhere
Albert worked for Pierce Arrow.
The rest of the family joined J. L. in Chicago sooner or later.