Zwaantje Lummen

By Bentheimers International Society

Some information for this biography is taken from "The Lemmen Family of Grafschaft Bentheim," by Lloyd J. Lemmen and Loren J. Lemmen.

Hand drawn map of the Frensdorf area where Zwaantje Lummen was born.

A portion of General Major von Le Coq‘s Grafschaft Bentheim map (1805) depicting Frensdorf, now part of Nordhorn. Zwaantje Lummen was born here in 1858.

Zwaantje Lummen (also called Swenne) was born on April 8, 1858 in Frensdorf, the second of four children born to Jan Harm Lummen and Gese Stevens in Grafschaft Bentheim:

In March of 1867, when Zwaantje was nine years old, she left her homeland with her parents, Jan Harm and Gese, and her younger brother Hendrik Lummen (the other two siblings had died in childhood). The Lummen family settled near Graafschap in Allegan County, Michigan.

Zwaantje would have another brother and sister born here:

  • Geertjen—born around 1870; and,
  • Willem—born around 1872.

On June 28, 1879, Zwaantje married Hermannes Lemmen. They had five children:

  • Gessie (Grace)—born 1881;
  • Fannie—born 1885;
  • Benjamin—born 1888;
  • Dena—born 1891; and,
  • John M.—born 1894.

Her husband passed away on June 29, 1907 in Kent County, Michigan. Zwantje died on May 2, 1909 and was buried in the Graafschap Cemetery.

Studio portrait of Hermannes Lemmen and his wife Zwaantje.

This portrait of Hermannes and Zwaantje Lemmen was likely taken at the time of their wedding in 1879.

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