Klaas (Charles) Jaarsma and his descendants
laatste wijziging vrijdag 29 januari 2010
father of Klaas Jaarsma, Freek Jaarsma,
was a dairyman by trade, its unknown if he learned this trade from his father Tye. By all accounts handed down through the family, Freek was well off and a
very successful dairyman. Freek was married twice and had several children. Klaas
(Charles) Frank Jaarsma was a child from the second wife, born November
11th 1871 in IJlst, Friesland, Holland.
Klaas (Charles) learned the dairy trade from his father. Klaas’s father die on October 14th 1896 (See note 1), the children from his first marriage inherited the family business and assets (See note 2). Without the business Klaas decided to start over in America, the land of golden opportunity.
Charles worked as a herdsman for John Frye before starting his own dairy business. Horse and buggy delivered the milk. After several years’ disaster struck, Charles’s older daughters contracted scarlet fever (dutch = rode hond). The board of health shut down the dairy operation (See note 3). For a time he worked chopping firewood before getting a state job repairing highways.
In 1926 Charles bought a Marlboro Massachusetts dairy business from Lizzotte and named it the Star dairy (See note 4). The dairy bottles inherited from Lizzotte were from all different dairies. Around 1929 or 30, after numerous complaints, Charles bought his own bottles, and in 1930 bought a new delivery truck. At the right side a picture of Charles (1935)
By this time Charles’s sons Frank and Joe were helping out running the business. Around this time Charles’s health started to decline, all the years of smoking started to take its toll. As time passed Charles was doing less and less but was always interested in the business. Eventually Frank took over the milk route. After several years of working 7 days a week he needed a change and handed over the business to Joe (brother). Joe kept the business from 1934 to 1972 and died of a heart attack in 1974. Upon retiring he sold the business to a Peterson, a son in the Marlboro dairy family. By 1972 the era of home milk delivery was coming to an end. Within months Peterson went out of business, ending the era of the Star dairy.
Charles's daughter Florence Jaarsma was killed in a tornado in 1953 at the age of 43 years. On a wedding photo (not her wedding) she is on the left.
In 1949 a second cousin of Klaas, Thijs Jaarsma in Langweer, emigrates with his wife and eleven of the thirteen children to Canada
1: After making several
bad investments Klaas’s (Charles),father committed suicide. This
story comes from the Dutch people that sponsored Klaas in Whitinsville MA. Klaas kept this a secret from the family.
Note 2: Sometime in the 1920’s, one day while Frank Jaarsma SR and Klaas (Charles) were cleaning milk bottles he told this story. From all accounts this was the only time he ever mentioned the reason why he came to America.
The family lived on 3 acres of land. To feed the family, Charles bought a cow,
some chickens and planted a very large garden. Trina (wife) made butter, cheese
and canned from the garden. Edith (daughter) had to quit school and work in a
shoe factory. For a time her pay was the only family income. After a few years
she got a job for the telephone company and remained there until she retired.
Charles sold the cow when he started the Star dairy in 1926. On
the picture Charles' Jaarsma family (back
row left ro right: Anna,
Edith, mother Trina, father
Charles and Betty;
and Florence; front:
On the picture Charles' Jaarsma family (back row left ro right: Anna, Edith, mother Trina, father Charles and Betty; middle row: Frank, Jo and Florence; front: Ruth.
The dairy business bought milk from a local dairy farmer in large milk cans,
then bottled and distributed the milk. For seven days a week the workday would
start at 5:00 am cleaning and sterilizing bottles from the previous day. The
milk would then be bottled and delivered. Around 8:00 am fresh milk would be
picked up at a local farm, bottled and a second delivery took place. From noon
time to 7:00 pm was time off. Around 7:00 pm there was a second milk pickup and
by 8:00 pm the workday was complete.