Shirley Gertsch Bartels on Peter and Pete Gertsch

Peter Gertsch, his wife Katy Tannler and his brother Fred (known as Fritz) came to Garden Home from Switzerland and settled on property off of Oleson Road sometime in the 1890’s. This property was on the west side of Oleson Road, north of the Frank Farm.  The brothers  decided to into the dairy business and built a barn, cleared the land and built a house.

A son whom they called “Pete” to distinguish him from his father, Peter, was born to Katie and Peter but in July of 1895, when the child was 6 weeks old, his father died.  Honoring the custom of their Swiss heritage it was decided to send to Switzerland for the remaining brother, Christian, to come to America and marry his brother’s widow.  Katie and Christian Gertsch were married and had two sons, Albert and Christian, who were half-brothers to Pete.  Katie and Christian raised Pete and the dairy was later passed on to Pete who ran it until the mid-1950s

Pete Gertsch married Rosalie Balmer who was from a local dairy family. Their daughter, Shirley Gertsch Bartels grew up on the Gertsch property, attending Garden Home School, Beaverton High School and graduating from Oregon State University in 1960. The brothers decided to go into the dairy business and built a barn, cleared the land and built a house. After purchasing cows from the Hoffman, Balmer dairy, they named their new place Shattuck Dairy.

In 1955 Pete sold the last of 100 dairy cows he maintained and in 1958 sold 33 acres to W.C. Bauman. The remaining 26 acres, which included the house he had built for his wife Rosalie, was sold to Mr. Bauman in1976. According to Shirley, her father had requested that Mr. Bauman set aside some of the land for a school.

The land was developed as Arranmore, a housing subdivision. On the western side of Oleson Road, directly across from SW Miles Court, stands a Colorado Blue Spruce planted in 1939 by Pete for Rosalie and daughter, Shirley. It was directly in front of their house that was built in 1935.  The house is no longer there but if you drive slowly down Oleson Road and look to the west you can see the tree.

Montclair School was built on what was the northern edge of the old dairy. The school opened in 1970 and is an elementary school in the Beaverton School District.

By Virginia G. Vanture, June 2, 2010, from an interview with Shirley Gertsch Bartels, the daughter of Pete Gertsch, granddaughter of Peter Gertsch.

This entry was posted in Dairies, Early History, Homes, People and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Shirley Gertsch Bartels on Peter and Pete Gertsch

  1. Peter Albert Gertsch says:

    The 1909 farm house on the Gertsch Estate is still standing. I lived there with my father (Fred), my mother (Olive), and my brother (Robert) from 1956 to 1968. The 4.5 acres is now called Timber Ridge.

    • peter A gertsch says:

      The house had 13 rooms a basement and two garages and a cannning room with many apple trees walnut trees an a cherry tree. Also there were many fir trees in the woods.

      When we moved in 1956 my dads cousin Pete still had a few cows in the barn .

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