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Plasterer Genealogy

Family Tree of Rev. and Dr. George M. Plasterer


Genealogy is a side interest of mine. I collect bits of information along the way. Anyone who has further information about the family, and would like to submit any information please do so. The Plasterer Family, in its beginning, was German. Only when my grandfather married a Norwegan did we gain some of the Scandanavian influence typical of Minnesotans.


Heinrich Pleester (Hendrick Bleistire, Henrick Blestre, Henry Pleestery) and Anna Maria Zimmerman. They arrived on the ship Friendship from Palatinate, Germany, on September 3, 1739. The notes on the ship's log suggest Henry was sick, which may account for the change in names. They were so poor that they had to bind one of their sons to the captain of the ship to pay their fare across the ocean. They arrived in the Port of Philadelphia. They purchased a farm in Warwick Township, Lancaster County, PA. They sold the farm on July 6, 1769 to Conrad Pleester. Though Henry may have died soon after arrival, Anna Maria becomes the sponsor in baptism of many grandchildren at the White Oak Church at Penryn, PA. The boy bound to the captain of the ship was brought up among English people and learned to speak only the English language. He only met his brothers, sisters, and parents once afterward and neither could speak to the other. one spoke no German, and the other spoke no English. This boy settled in Tennessee and that is where the Plasterer's of North Carolina and Virginia sprang from. Many of his offspring became druggist and physicians.


Conrad Pleester (1745-1804) filed his name in 1771 as Plaster, and became known in the official genealogies as Conrad Plaster I. He married Margaret Betz (1752-1822). He served four years in the Revolution as Private, sixth class, in Captain Christian Hollinger's company, 9th battallion, under the command of Colonel John Huber in 1779. He also served in the 7th Company commanded by Captain John Ashton, Third Battalion, under the command of Colonel George Feather, 1780-1782. He was in the Revolutionary War. Records indicate he had to pay a fine because he could not bear the cold. I have the German and English version of what is on his grave stone. It is a quotation of Isaiah 61:10 and then these words:


Up! Up! Let us determine those

Of us still in this world

That we finally after this life

Shall enter into the tent of heaven.


Conrad Plaster I and Margaret Betz had seven children.


Henry Plaster

Conrad Plaster II (1772-1842), also known as "Jr."

George Plaster

Susanna Plaster

Elizabeth Plaster (1783-1856)

Mary Plaster

Barbara Plaster (1787-1865)


Conrad Plaster II, Jr. (1772-1840), married Elizabeth Koser (1779-1842). After 1804, they settled in Elizabethtown, PA., and in 1815 moved to Franklin County, PA. Conrad Plasterer II (Jr.) (1772-1842) and Elizabeth Koser (1779-1842) in Shippensburg, PA. My notes are a bit confused here. He was a blacksmith. Dates are confused on Conrad, though, because one communication I have has his dates 1773-1840.


Elizabeth (1798-1861) married Anthony Martin.

Mary (?) married Stambaugh and moved to Iowa.

Margaret (1801-1824)

George (1802-1870)

Susan (?) married Samuel Smith

Catherine (?) married Shumaker and moved to Iowa.

Sarah (1810-1892) married William H. Etter.

Conrad III (1815-1888) married Margaret Wallace.


John (1817-1907) married first to Mary Forehope (1820-1864) and and lived in Shippensburg PA. These would be my great-great-great grandparents. Later, he married Anna Zumbro (1836-1916).


George W. Plasterer (1847-1925) married Catherine Barbra Gettel (1850-1914). They lived in Franklin, PA. These would be my great-great grandparents.


Here is a note I received from a relative. "Huntington County Civil War Roster: George S. Plasterer, Sergeant, 34th Ind. Inf. Co. G. William A. Plasterer, Musician, 34th Ind. Inf. Co. G. Thought you might be interested. To find out more about the 34th, go to the Indiana in the Civil War page. A link is provided on the Link Page of the Huntington County site."


Albert Miley Plasterer (1871-1943) married Margaret Ellen Herr (1871-1919). They moved to Maryland, then to Heron Lake, MN., and then to California. Albert was a fiddler, often present at dances. He also liked the ladies. The story goes that Margaret caught him with a young woman and kicked him out of the house. He moved to California. These were my great-grandparents.


George Albert Plasterer (1896-1960) married Myrtle Luella Shaw (1901-1999). They lived in Heron Lake, MN. These are my grandparents. George was an alcoholic and gambler early in his life. However, he was an excellent grandfather. He took me out to the farm whenever we visited and gave me rides on the tractor. The story goes that he left Friday for Heron Lake, made the rounds in the area for drinking and gambling, and returned home with more money than he left. Myrtle was a strong a Lutheran and did not approve of his drinking. A book about Heron Lake Families describes him as "active, colorful, and a promoter of the community." He was well-liked by everyone. For comments about Myrtle, my grandmother, please click here She married Walt Anderson in 1962. He died in 1978. She was a dedicated insurance lady, and something of a flirt with the guys. She always kept herself looking good.




Albert Owen Plasterer (1921-2003) married Alvera Knee (1927-2004). They lived in several places in Minnesota, mostly in Heron Lake, Austin, and Luverne. These are my parents. Dad entered the Navy, though he was an only son and could have by-passed military service. He married mom on whim. They hardly knew each other. They began life farming, then truck driving. Finally, dad landed a job with the state of Minnesota weighing cattle and hogs at Hormel. Mom usually worked.


Here is the obituary notice for my father.

Albert Owen Plasterer was born August 27, 1921 at Heron Lake, MN to George and Myrtle Shaw Plasterer. After graduating from Windom High School in 1940, he enlisted in the Navy. When he was discharged from the Navy on October 21, 1945, he entered business with his father, called Plasterer Livestock, a fact noted in the Heron Lake history. He married Alvera Knee on Nov. 19, 1945 in  Worthington, MN.  They moved to Bemidji in 1949. After moving to Austin, MN, he became a Minnesota state livestock weigher at Hormel. He moved to Luverne in 1973, where he continued his state livestock weighing position at Iowa Beef Processors. In retirement, he moved back to Heron Lake, MN to care for his mother, Myrtle. He liked to go to Las Vegas and Jackpot Junction. He liked fishing and pool.

He is survived by George and Suzanne Plasterer of Crawfordsville, In, Lynn and Danny Mallet of Independence, MO, Susan Fields of Springfield, VA , Cindy and Mark Horkey of Heron Lake, Shirley Olson of Canton, SD, 14 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents and one daughter who died at birth.



Here is the obituary notice for my mother.

Alvera Lorraine Knee Plasterer died Saturday, December 18, 2004 at the home of Mark and Cindy Horkey at 11:15 am. She was born November 12, 1925 at Chandler, MN to William and Lena Runge Knee. After graduating from Chandler High School in 1942, she worked as a waitress in Slayton and Pipestone, MN. She married Albert Plasterer on Nov. 19, 1945 in Worthington, MN. They moved to Bemidji in 1949. After moving to Austin, MN, she worked as a cook at a nursing home. She moved to Luverne, MN, where she worked as a lab technician for Land-O-Lakes. After retirement, when her special aunt needed help she moved to Slayton, MN to take care of her for seven years. Then she moved back to Heron Lake. She worked as a volunteer at the Windom Senior Dining. She also did janitor work at the United Methodist Church and the library. She is thankful for her good health throughout most of her life. Even with her Esophagus cancer, she has not experienced great pain. She loved her family and helping people. What does mom want to say about her faith? She lived her life through her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, her church, and her God. She accepted Christ as her Savior Dec. 4, 1958, at Crane Addition Community Chapel in Austin, MN. She appreciates the pastors who have helped her grow in faith. In particular, she is greatful for Joe Matt of Austin, Rollin Haynbes of Slayton, and Carter Krumback of Heron Lake.

She is survived by George and Suzanne Plasterer of Crawfordsville, In, Lynn and Danny Mallet of Independence, MO, Susan Fields of Springfield, VA , Cindy and Mark Horkey of Heron Lake, Shirley Olson of Canton, SD, 17 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren, and many special nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her parents, one daughter who died at birth, five sisters Lois Baldridge, Lola Prahm, Wilma Hendrickson, Erma Eichenger, and Alice Boock, and three brothers, Lawrence, Vernon, and Melvin.

Here is what I shared at my mother’s funeral.

            I am grateful for each of the family members that came today. I am grateful for hospice and its workers for the care they provided for mom. I am grateful for Mark and Cindy for caring so much for mom. I am grateful for the people of this church for providing a church home for mom. I am grateful for Pastor Carter. I can only say that I guess she found a United Methodist pastor who was Baptist enough for her.

            I would not trade the time I had with mom a few weeks ago for anything. I had the night watch for mom. Usually, when mom called out for me, it was because she need a drink or to have me move her in the bed. One night, she called out "George!" "What do you want, mom." She said, "I want a hug." Another evening she called out, "George!" "What do you want, mom." "I love you, babe."

            I often ask families what words or phrases they would use to describe the person who died. I had the opportunity to ask my mom that question. Her first response surprised me: "Horrible." I asked her to explain her word, and she said that she drank a lot and was "loose" when she was young. She went to church, but it did not mean anything to her. She never blamed the church for that. She recognized that she did not get the message. Another word was "good," in that she was faithful to her husband, and loved her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was the youngest of 13 children, almost all of whom drank heavily. She resisted that path of life. She also said, "Wonderful now." It took cancer to help her realize what Christ as Savior really meant to her. She now realizes what it means for Christ to be present with us. Mom showed a lot of strength in her life, more than most of us recognized.

            My mother experienced the ministry of Crawfordsville First UMC in Crawfordsville, IN in a special way. Our congregation included her in prayer requests. People wrote notes and cards. The students of the 5th grade class wrote cards once a month. This touched her so that she wanted to come to Crawfordsville to see a church that expressed so much love for someone it had never met. She also wanted to speak to the congregation. I had no idea what she would say. I had never seen mom speak in public. Mom could still surprise me, though. She took the wireless microphone and spoke confidently of how grateful she was for the congregation and its notes. She was grateful for the generosity of the church in the time it was willing to give to me to spend with mom. Three persons, Monte Thompson, Clint Gassaway, and Phil Wray, have come all the way to this funeral. Behind them, I see many others who would be here if they could.

            James Eichenger shared with me a story about when he was a child and mom was a teen caring for him. Apparently, one of the ways of attracting mice back then was to lace oatmeal with poison. As a child, he saw the bowl of oatmeal and started to eat it. Mom saw what he had done, picked him up in his arms, and ran several blocks to the doctor's office and saved his life. Such an action was typical of mom, who spent much of her life caring for others.

            I did not understand the relationship with dad. They fought a lot, mostly because dad regularly came home drunk. Yet, I am sure that decisions about that relationship had a direct relationship to what she thought was best for the children.

            She loved her family. The only time I remember being spanked is by mom. It happened once. I worked with three of my sisters to get my sister, Shirley, to step on a tack. We were successful, which made Shirley cry. Just then, mom and dad came through the door. Mom lined us up and spanked each of us. When mom got mad, which was not often, I can remember her going through the list of kids: "George, Shirley, Cindy, Sue, who are you?"

            Mom's advice to me was consistent: be good. Mom’s influence upon me was that, from the earliest time I can remember I did not want to be like dad in his drinking. Mom also made sure the kids got around church. The church has long been important to me. I saw adults who had a different relationship with each other than what I saw at home. Mom put these five children in a place where they could walk through to a better life, if only they would do so. I am glad that I have said to what mom wanted in my life. When I went to a Christian school in Kansas, it was a major step away from Minnesota and reaching out to a new way of life. I wanted to be a teacher in history or political science. When I felt God calling me into ministry, I told mom. Her response was that she and Pastor Joe in Austin had prayed for that.

            She wanted to grow in her faith. Many times over the years after I became a pastor, she would call me with a question about a portion of the bible. She read my devotionals and sermons over the years. She even found meaningful the book by Rick Warren, Purpose Driven Life. She continued to grow in her faith until the end.

            One blessing is that mom had a reasonably good death. She was grateful for her good health. Even with esophagus cancer, she did not have great pain, except for the feeding tube. She was aware of who she was and who was around her until the end. 


George (1951-Present). He married Cheryl Bellmore (1956-Present). They had two children, Michael and David. They divorced in 1990. He married Suzanne McElhany (1947-Present) in 1992.


Lynn (1952-Present). She married Danny Mallet. They had two children, Michael (2/25/1980) and Chrissy (4/5/1982).


Susan (1955-Present). She married Elmer Fields. They divorced in 1990 (?)


Cindy (1956-Present). She married Mark Horkey.


Shirley (1958-Present). She married Terry Olson. They divorced in 1990. 


George Michael Plasterer (1951-Present) married Cheryl Bellmore (1956-Present). They divorced in 1990. George re-married to Suzanne Marie (Brown Overman) McElhany in 1992.


Michael (1980-Present).

David (1982-Present). He married Kari X in 2014 and had three children, Nia, Henry Owen, and Edith Analynn.


 Lynn married Danny Mallet.


Michael (2/25/1980-Present)

Chrissy (4/5/1982-Present) Her child is Hailey Lynn Mallett (12/9/1998).


 Susan married Elmer Fields. They divorced in 1995

Ben (7/2/75-Present)

Shawn (4/29/1980-Present)

Aaron (6/23/1983-Present)


Cindy Married Mark Horkey.


Dale (7/19/1977-Present) His child is Madeline Elizabeth Horkey (7/2/2002). He married Jennifer Schlepp, who had a child, Tanner.


Seth (9/24/1984-Present)


Caleb 10/23/1985-Present)


Adam (2/18/1988-Present)


Harlan (12/12/1989-Present)


 Shirley married Terry Olson. They divorced in 1990.


Gene (8/28/1978-Present) He married Kelley Preschong in 8/30/2003. They have a child, Anna Marie Olson (12/17/2003).


Carrie & Sheri (2/19/1980-Present)

Carrie married Aaron Carlson in 11/18/1999. They have Anthony Lee Carlson (2/25/1997), Cody (8/27/1999), and Alicia (6/19/2002).

Sheri married Justin Stucky in 3/20/98, through whom she had a child, Miranda (11/22/1998). They divorced in 1999. She has Jordan Olson (8/19/2003) with Justin Blade. She has Christian James Stoner (10/27/2004) with Charles Stoner.



I made a trip to Huntington, IN. There is still a farm known as the "old Plasterer place." The cemetery has tombstones of ancestors. In addition, I understand one of the local magicians was a Plasterer. He was a science teacher, well loved in the community. He even became a regular on the Johnny Carson Show. I hear that someone has traced our ancestors back to Europe. The story I hear is that the first of our ancestors was an Egyptian slave who was brought to Holland in the 1500's.