The Peter Elegeert Family


The Elegeert / Elegreet Family
Gladstone and Escanaba

The Peter Elegeert and Louise Boryn Story

Peter Elegeert came to the United States in May of 1903. He left his home of Stekene (or Sinaai), Belgium and joined his brother John, in the town of Gladstone in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan. John had been in Gladstone a year earlier than Peter and worked in the copper mines. Peter left his family, wife Louise and daughters Evelyn, Olive and Genevieve (Jane), in Belgium while he came to the U.S. searching for work. After he settled in Gladstone, he sent for his family and they arrived a few months later, in October of 1903.

Peter worked in the copper mines like his brothers and then eventually worked in the roundhouse (coal heaver) for the Soo Line railroad in Gladstone.

Before Peter came to the U.S., he was a deep-sea diver who worked at fixing the many dams found throughout Belgium and the Netherlands. As work became scarce in Belgium, promises of a new life in America became very atractive to Peter and his family. Since Peter had an older brother in America already, he chose to follow them and then resettle his family in America.

Peter's Ellis Island immigration records show that he was 26 years old at the time of his arrival, that he sailed from the Port of Antwerp in Belgium and that his passage was paid for by his brother. Peter and John's other brother Constant would later join the Elegeert brothers in Gladstone in 1907.

According to family members who knew Peter, he was a big man who liked to drink and play cards. He was an accomplished swimmer and a story has been told of his swimming in the English Channel to land after a boating accident. He also dove in to rescue his daughter Evelyn after she fell off a pier in Green Bay, Wisconsin many years later.



The Peter Elegeert Family - c. ~1910

L-R: Josephine, Jane, Evelyn, wife Louise, Olive

and standing in back, husband Peter.


The Elegeert Family Tree


PETER ELEGEERT, born 1876 in Belguim.
LOUISE BORYN, born 1875 in Belgium.
Married 1898 in Belgium.


(1) Evelyn Elegeert, born in 1898 and married George Stock. Evelyn was a nurse who did her training during the Prohibition days of Chicago.

(2) Olive Elaine Elegeert, born 1901 and married Louis Braspenninckx.

(3) Genevieve (Jane) Elegeert, born in 1904 and never married.

(4) Josephine Elegeert, born in 1904 and married Raymond Johnson.

(5) Thomas Elegeert married Beulah (Bea) in 1940 and recently passed away in 2002.





Above Gravestone photo:

Elegeert descendants: Katie, Allison and Kelly

visitng Elegeert Family gravesite in Gladstone, Michigan

(Oct. 2003)


If you are a direct descendant of the Peter and Louise Boryn - Elegeert Family,
please contact me and I can add your family information and/or photographs if you wish!
I can easily link to your family websites also. 
I would love to hear from the Gladstone Elegeerts, Johnson's and Stock families!
Kathy Poston's e-mail: 
Updated Last:  12/08/2006