Brubaker Family Reunion 2013
A great time was had by all at the 91st annual reunion on August 4th, 2013!
The 91st annual reunion of the Brubaker Families of America was held in the all-purpose room/gymnasium at the Church of the Apostles United Church of Christ on the original “A” Family homestead lands of Hans Brubaker.
The featured speaker was Lynn Sommer of New Holland, PA, a fraktur artist and descendant of the ‘A’ family line of Brubakers. Lynn comes from a line of artists and musicians. While growing up in a small Swiss Mennonite community in Ohio, her family household was filled with the sounds of traditional hymms and the images of traditional folk art as depicted in quilts, furniture, stencils, and fraktur.
Lynn found herself drawn to the traditional arts and music of her heritage and has become a highly skilled fraktur artist. She is keeping alive within the larger Brubaker family the skill of fraktur creation first started by ‘E’ Family member John (Hans) Brubacher II, nephew of B-1 Jacob and C-1 John in the early to mid-1700’s.
There were approximately 85 people in attendance, with family members from as far away as Iraq in attendance. Several awards were given out: to the longest married couple, (72 years) the oldest attendee (96 years old), youngest attendee (10 years old), and the ones who traveled the farthest to attend the reunion (as mentioned, from Iraq).
And then there was the ‘Brubaker Mystery Box’.
Eileen Bender Johns of the ‘A’ Family Line recounted the story of how Dr. J. Kenneth Brubaker was contacted in 2012 by an individual from Florida about a box dating back to the 1940’s that had its origins back in Rohrerstown, Lancaster County, PA,. While the box was from circa 1945, the contents, including photos, dated back to the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Through research and examination of the contents, it was discerned that the names found in the box, including Brubaker, Hershey, Mayer, Milnor, and Uren, were the names of families and neighbors in old Rohrerstown. These families, their heritage, and their experiences covered parts of the globe that ranged from Wales to Lancaster County, to Algeria. Many of them attended the old Rohrerstown Lutheran Church and are buried in the Lutheran and Reformed Cemetery in the village. And, some of these family members were Eileen’s neighbors! The individual from Florida was a relation to the families listed who thought, given the name on the box, that the Association might like to have it. The Brubaker Families of America are grateful for this and have donated it to the Lancaster County Historical Society for their archives.
Musical entertainment consisted of the sounds of the bluegrass guitar and vocals from the duet of Lamar and Ruthie Brubaker (‘A’ Family) Zimmerman. There were many displays of family trees, in addition to numerous displays of memorabilia, books, and articles to view and/or purchase. There were also crafts and other products by Brubaker family artisans and craftspeople, including music CD’s by the Zimmermans available for purchase.