The Extended Batke Family with Link neighbors

The Extended Batke Family with Link neighbors
Pictured in the photo: (Back row, standing, left to right) Herman Fredrick, Anna Batke, Henry Batke, Sr., Selma Batke, Henry Robert Batke, William Batke and Arthur Engler. (Front row/sitting, left to right) Donald Fredrick, Robert Fredrick, Katherine Batke Fredrick, Ruth Batke, Edwin Batke, Katherine Reck Batke, Jerald Batke, Edna Kwiatkowski Batke, Mary Batke Engler and Elaine Engler. Taken c1940, possibly to celebrate Henry and Katherine’s 30th wedding anniversary, October 22, 1940. Photo courtesy: Don Fredrick.

About Henry Batke and Katherine Reck

Heinrich Batke, the son of Martin Batke (c1848-b1912) and Anna Lock (1848-1939) was born in Chortitza, Russia on September 7, 1877. Also in Russia, Catharina Reck was born on October 14, 1890. Her parents were John Reck and Renata Shirk. Henry and Katherine married in Russia on September 22, 1910. On July 13, 1912, Henry, his wife and seven month old daughter, Katherine, sailed from the Port of Bremen, Germany on the ship Pallanza. They traveled to Quebec City, Canada arriving on July 28, 1912. They immediately left on a special Canadian Pacific Railroad train to Saskatchewan, Canada. The Batkes homesteaded in Lydiard, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan between 1913 and 1918. On October 3, 1917 Henry Batke became a citizen of Canada. Due to England's sovereignty over Canada, he became a British citizen. Finding farming in Canada difficult, on December 7, 1921 the Batke family, now also including Mary, William and Selma, left for Yellow Pine, Alabama. After the birth of Anna and much hardship in Alabama, the family moved to St. Joseph, Michigan where children Henry, Ruth and Edwin were born. Henry, a furniture maker in Russia, became a machine operator at the 1900 Corporation, a fore-runner of Whirlpool, in St. Joseph. After Henry's death on April 7, 1949, Katherine Reck Batke married Gustav Schmeichel in 1959. Katherine Reck Batke Schmeichel died at the Claremont Nursing Home in Benton, Michigan on October 28, 1979.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Henry Batke, Certificate of Naturalization, 1917

On October 3, 1917, Henry Batke became a British citizen of the Dominion of Canada. It is very likely Henry had to go to Swift Current to collect his Certificate of Naturalization.

There is a curious line in this document:

"This is therefore to certify to all whom it may concern that, under and by virtue of the said Act Henry Batke has become naturalized as a British subject, and is, within Canada, entitled to all political and other rights, powers and privileges and subject to all obligations to which a natural born British subject is entitled or subject within Canada with this qualification, that he shall not when within the limits of the foreign State of which he was a subject previous to the date hereof, be deemed to be a British subject unless he has ceased to be a subject of that State, in pursuance of the laws thereof, or in pursuance of a treaty or convention to that effect."

So, Henry could, theoretically, still be a Russian subject if he returned Russia!  Also, if I read this correctly, he was only a British subject in the Dominion of Canada, not in the other countries which formed Great Britain.

With Henry's naturalization final, he could now complete his patent for his homestead which he began on March 22, 1913.

Henry Batke, Certificate of Naturalization, File #7313, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah, MF#2294910, (October 3,1917); Swift Current Judicial District, Saskatchewan, Canada.

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