So here we are at the end of our 200+ year Boller story. Beginning in the late 1700’s in Germany and now continuing in Iowa & beyond, we see the fingerprints of God moving in and through our family…bringing His vibrancy of life to each generation. Who knows how many more years God will give Sandy and me as we continue working for Him and His Kingdom purposes? Whether it be a long time or a short season, I’m so happy that I’ve been able to write, for all of our grandchildren, the history of the Boller family as we currently know it today. Keep in mind that this is a very selective history that has been written (original-2006), and re-written again (2015), and hopefully, we’ve given you just enough here to keep the family fires burning for future generations.
Please feel free to add to it and build to it as the extended Boller family continues to grow and flourish. But as we now see the seventh and eighth generation of Bollers in America flourish, I do have an assignment for my four children, their spouses, our seven grandchildren (and counting), and the extended Boller family out there…those who believe George F. and Elizabeth Boller to be their clan. My hope as the family continues to grow and expand, you will come together on occasion to celebrate the past, tell stories, and dream toward the future.
When I first wrote Our Boller Story back in 2006, I challenged us as a family to two things. The first goal was to come together in October of 2016 (the two-hundredth year of the Boller family here in America) and celebrate this special anniversary. As you can see from the pictures below, we accomplished that goal on Saturday, October 15, 2016! And what an enjoyable day it was!
October 15, 2016. Celebrating 200 Years of Bollers in America!
Two dreams: Mission Accomplished. The Boller tour. The Boller gravestone.
Marty & Eric at 175 South Westminster, Iowa City (1966-1991) on our all-day Boller excursion through some of the old Boller homes! Mom & Dad built this home in 1966 when we moved to Iowa City. At the time we were the last house on Westminster with nothing but empty fields to our north.
Marty & Eric at 407 E. Henry, Mt. Pleasant (1957-1966). This two-story house was built right after the Civil War (1860’s) so was nearly one-hundred years old when we lived there! Still lookin’ pretty nice all these years later.
Eric & Marty go back to school. Elementary/Jr. High Mt. Pleasant (1957-1965)
Marty points to Dixie Boller’s 7th Grade Reading Classroom (third floor)…site of the infamous “B when I deserved an A” incident.
Mt. Pleasant – Old Threshers memories!
Marty & Eric in Wayland. Our first Boller home (1948-1957). The little house tucked between 304 W. Front Street & 306 W. Front Street.
Marty & Eric in Wayland. 203 E. Main St. Long-time home of Grandma Olive Boller. Our Mom & Dad lived in the second-floor mini-apartment after returning to Wayland after WWII (1946-1948). Back in the day, the now enclosed entry-way was a beautiful open-air front porch complete with Grandma’s flowers, and a big porch swing. Grandma Olive lived there from the time she was first married (1912) until the summer of 1969 when she moved into a nursing home in Iowa City.
Exploring Wayland, IA. Turkey town USA.
Honoring the Bollers at North Hill Cemetery near Wayland.
Saturday, October 15, 2016. A beautiful day ends at Kalona Brewing Company.
Dream #2 accomplished! Our second goal I set for us back in 2006 was to replace the worn-out, broken gravestone of George F. Boller. So, in honor of our 200th year in America, we purchased and setup a beautiful replacement headstone for George, replacing the original gravestone which was quickly wasting away in the Clinton Union Cemetery outside Goshen, Indiana. Here are pictures of that new stone taken in 2016!
Sandy & I visited the site again in September of 2019.
Addendum: Saturday, October 13, 2018. It’s an abbreviated Boller Family weekend! The boys join us to visit North Hill Cemetery in Wayland, IA with an important stop for Mennonite donuts in Kalona!
Now, a final word from your humble author…
Thanks for taking the time to peruse through this Boller Story of ours. I hope it’s helped you get a better picture of the first six generations of Bollers here in America. May we all continue to grow and flourish in the years ahead!
To you, our dear children and your spouses, we say… Sandy and I are so deeply proud of each of you and are so honored to be in your lives. That deep joy I felt inside on the day Sandy & I were first married has been rivaled only by the joy I have in seeing each of you grow up, loving Jesus with your whole heart, and living gentle lives of honor and righteousness toward Him and with each other! Each of you have become our greatest treasures here on earth. Thank you for being so loving & kind and so merciful & forgiving each time we’ve let you down, not supplying for you all the worldly blessings we might have chosen for you if our lives were lived in a bit more prosperity. Our prayer is that where-ever and when-ever you’ve felt a lack of provision or love or support from us, that the Lord, your Heavenly Father, can & will supply adequately for you where we might have failed you. We love you deeply…more than words can ever say!
Finally, I close by addressing our amazing grandchildren. Please know that your Grandma Sandy and Grandpa Marty love you so very, very much and look forward to all you will accomplish in your lives with God’s help in the days ahead. Remember that we love you forever! Keep going. Keep believing in yourself and in the God who gives you strength to run this race called life. We’ll be watching and cheering you on!
Ephesians 3: 20-21 Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen. NIV
Martin Jay Boller (click here to stay in touch with me via email)
Sixth generation history-keeper for everything Boller.
“…and I modestly took my place as the one and only bass and I oom-pahed up and down the square.” Meredith Willson, another fine musician from Iowa.
May the Good Lord bless and keep you.