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Ehmann and Mikelson Family Collection

Ehmann and Mikelson Family Collection

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Ehmann and Mikelson Family Collection, 1890-1991

Douglas County History Research Center
Douglas County Libraries
100 S. Wilcox Street
Castle Rock, Colorado 80104
Phone: 303-688-7730

© 2017

Profile Description

Creation: Encoded by Sarah Stevens 2018-01-02
Language: Finding aid is in English

Collection Summary

RepositoryDouglas County Libraries / 100 S. Wilcox St. / Castle Rock, CO 80104 / Phone: 303-688-7730
Creator Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson
Title Ehmann and Mikelson Family Collection
Dates: 1890-1991
Size 2 Hollinger record boxes, 2 flat boxes, 2 photographic binder boxes
Abstract: The Ehmann and Mikelson Family Collection contains correspondence, immigration papers, missals and religious materials, books, educational pamphlets, photographs, and postcards collected and assembled by Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson, granddaughter of German immigrants and Douglas County pioneers, John Baptiste Ehmann and Anna Meier Ehmann. The materials illustrate the life of a German Catholic family in the Upper Lake Gulch region of Douglas County over the course of ninety years.
Collection Number 1995.001
Language: English
Language: German

Arrangement of the Collection

Collection is arranged into the following series:
Series I. Personal papers
Series II. Correspondence
Series III. Business and financial materials
Series IV. Manuscripts and writings
Series V. Ephemeral and collected materials
Series VI. Religous materials
Series VII. Books
Series VIII. Visual materials

Scope and Content

The Ehmann and Mikelson family collection contains correspondence, immigration documents, photographs, religious books and publications, children's books, direct mail and ephemeral material, funeral bulletins and books, and a small portion of genealogical materials related to several members of the Ehmann family. The materials were collected and assembled by Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson over the course of her life. Family members represented in the collection include Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson, Simon Ehmann, Josephine Nock Ehmann, John Baptiste Ehmann, Getrude Ehmann Mikelson, and her descendents.

The personal papers series includes funeral bulletins and cards for members of the Ehmann family and their family friends. The series also includes materials related to Getrude Ehmann Mikelson's time on the selective service draft board. Genealogical papers and for the families and immigration documents also reside in the personal papers series.

The correspondence series primarily consists of letters among family members. A large portion of the letters were written in German, and several are accompanied by translations. The availability of a translation is noted at the file level in the finding aid, and translations are contained in the same folder as the source material. The majority of the letters were written to Simon Ehmann from Johann Ehmann with some letters to Josephine Nock Ehmann and Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson. Postcards to and from members of the Ehmann family, as well as greeting cards, mostly Christmas cards, are also contained in the collection.

The business and financial materials series consists of banks notes, receipts, and invoices collected by Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson. A hospital bill for Josephine Nock Ehmann can also be found in the series.

The manuscripts and writing series contains a handwritten account on the death of Lewis Pechtl. Series additionally includes an anonymous typescript play, "On the Jury."

The ehpemeral and collected materials series mostly includes promotional booklets, direct mail, and catalogs collected by Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson.

Religous materials, including books or pamphlets, related to the Catholic Church comprise a series in the collection. These materials include missals for dialogue mass, high mass, and low mass and were used at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Castle Rock. A small leather bound King James Bilble published in 1849 resides in the collection. An accompanying note suggests the Bible was recovered from the Doepke house, near the Ehmann family ranch in what was known as the Upper Lake Gulch area of Douglas County. The series includes a record of the financial contributions of members of the Catholic churches led by Father Walter Stiedle from 1947.

Several books collected by the Ehmann family reside in the collection. The books series includes "The Poetic Works of Sir Walter Scott" from 1814, historic political speeches, and two children's books of stories depicting pioneer life that were once owned by a Douglas County School Library. Instructional and educational pamphlets on topics related to domestic work and childcare, gardening, nature, and farming are contained within the collection.

The collection contains 822 cardstock and print photographs and photographic negatives. The photos depict various Ehmann family members and their friends, including members of the Doepke family, in formal and informal settings. The photographs depict the family ranch near Upper Lake Gulch and Cherry Valley and the land maintained by Simon Ehmann knowns as the "Springcliffe Ranch." Some of the photographs depict other locations in Douglas County like the Castlewood Canyon reservoir and dam.

Biography / History

Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson (1908-1993) was the granddaughter of German Catholic immigrants and pioneers, John Baptiste Ehmann (1839-1909) and Anna Meier Ehmann (1840-1914). John and Anna immigrated to Douglas County from Bavaria in 1888 with their five children: Anna (1865-1946), Simon Peter (1868-1948), Elizabeth (1870-1946), Margaret (1873-1931), and Anna(1876-1957). The Ehmann family lived on a ranch in the Upper Lake Gulch area of Douglas County, a community of Bavarian and Austrian immigrants. John Baptiste Ehmann was trained as a stonemason and helped build the original Douglas County Courthouse. Alongside his son, Simon, John assisted in building the St. Francis of Assisi church, the first Catholic church in the area.

Simon Ehmann, son of John and Anna, married Josephine Nock in 1902. Sometime between 1903 and 1906, Simon purchased the Springcliffe Ranch where he lived and worked as a rancher until his death. Together they had five children: Rudolph (1902-1978), Louisa (Louise) (1905-1931), John Joseph (1906-1989), Gertrude (1908-1993), Simon Charles (1909-1987), Edward George Ehmann (1912-1966). According to an account in a local newspaper, Gertrude Ehmann Mikelson worked as a teacher at several schools in the area, including Deckers School, Lower Lake Gulch School, Sedalia School, and Kiowa School. She served on the Selective Service Draft Board in Douglas County during the Vietnam War. She was also responsible for beginning the Tri-County Health Department.

Access Terms

The following subject headings were assigned to the collection.

Doepke, Helen Josephine (Josie), 1878-1956
Ehmann, John Baptiste, 1839-1909
Ehmann, Josephine Anna Nock, 1877-1962
Ehmann, Rudolph Simon, 1903-1978
Ehmann, Simon Charles, 1909-1987
Ehmann, Simon Peter, 1868-1948
Mikelson, Gertrude A. Ehmann, 1908-1993
Saint Francis of Assisi Catholic Church (Castle Rock, Colo.)
Springcliffe Ranch (Spring Valley, Colo.)
Catholic Church
German Americans
Castle Rock (Colo.)
Upper Lake Gulch (Douglas County, Colo.)


Access Restrictions

Douglas County History Research Center material is non-circulating, requires staff retrieval and is available by appointment during normal library hours.

Copy Restrictions

The collection is used in the presence of the Douglas County History Research Center staff. Some items may be fragile and may only be duplicated with permission of the Douglas County History Research Center staff.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Ehmann and Mikelson Family Collection, 1890-1991 Douglas County History Research Center. Douglas County Libraries, Castle Rock, CO.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Daniel Mikelson to the Douglas County History Research Center in 1995. An accrual was made by Sebrina Mikelson Herliska in 2012.

Processing Information

Reprocessed by Sarah Stevens in 2017 and 2018.


No further accruals are expected.

Related Material

2017.091 Martin Mikelson Papers

2018.016 Ehmann Family Ranch Collection

Separated Material

Collection orginally contained newspapers, which were removed from the collection. The newspapers are available either online or through other means. An inventory of the removed newspapers is included in the collection.

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