Blanca Crooswijk Beijerman van de Wall
Born October 22, 1882 in Rotterdam, Netherlands
Died January 30, 1940 in ‘sGravenhage (the Hague), Netherlands
Peter Landberg and Johanna Elisabeth Schellhas had a daughter, Carolina Christina Magdalena Landberg.
In 1843, she married Jan Pieter Bezoet de Bie.
In 1877, their daughter, Carolina Christina Bezoet de Bie married Jozua Johannes Marinus Crosswijk.
They had three daughters:
-Carolina Christina Magdalena (1879-1914) who married Johannes Jacobus Beijerman (1873-1957) (“Jan le Soldat,” second cousin of Johan Beijerman) in 1905. (Tante Crissje) After Carolina died, he married Tante Mees.
-Blanca Flora (1882-1940) who married Johan Beijerman (1879-1959) in 1904, had a son, Jaap, in 1905 and a daughter, Lien, in 1908. They later divorced, then Blanca married Willem van de Wall, who had two sons with Helena Adolfona Fruman, Wasili in 1913 and Roel in 1915.
-Frieda (1888-1960) who married Anthonius Reijnier Roosegaarde in 1910 and married Willem Johannes Duysberg in 1920. (Tante Nookie)
Johan Beijerman had a sister whom Blanca’s children called “Tante Zus.”
Blanca Flora Beijerman Crooswijk went to America with Willem van de Wall in October 1915. They married January 14, 1917 in New York City. They had two daughters, Blanca (January 17, 1917) and Wilhelmina (March 30, 1919) (whose actual name was Frieda Crooswijk Wilhelmina Ruth).
The family lived in New York City and then Washington DC when Willem was harpist for the US Marine Band at the Wilson White House and later when he toured the US with the orchestra.
Blanca and the children traveled back to Holland and stayed to help with her father’s illness and death.
When they returned, they lived in a large house (“Blanca’s House”) with a barn found for them by friend Ruth Moffett, at Patchoque, Long Island, c. 1921-1924. In 1921, Blanca and Willem reenacted their wedding, complete with costumes, for the children at daughter Blanca’s request.
At some point, they were reunited with Willem’s two sons, Wasili and Roel. During visits to family in Holland, Blanca and her children were reunited with her son and daughter, Jaap and Lien. Apparently, the family preferred travelling on ships of the Holland American Line.
They moved to Allentown PA when Willem became involved with music therapy for the Pennsylvania State government social services. Blanca became involved in the YMCA, the Lutheran Church and the Order of the Eastern Star. They lived first on 4th Street, then on East Washington Street. In 1923 they were living on South St. Cloud Street (Arbicoste House). Blanca managed many children’s holiday and other special occasion plays and productions including costumes for immigrant children to display their native dress. The Allentown fairgrounds had a platform for these productions. Blanca also cared for troubled or neglected children, apparently as foster children, including several relatives’ children. Blanca’s friend “Tante” Ruth Moffett was Wilhelmina’s (Minny’s) godmother.
After she and the children visited Holland in 1929, Blanca and Willem separated and the children stayed with mother (Moeder) Blanca. Willem married his academic assistant, Clara Maria Liepmann. Blanca and the children were on public assistance for a time, though the divorce settlement required Willem to pay a small alimony and support. Blanca continued her YMCA activities and caring for foster children.
A few years later she and the children spent some weeks during the summers at Lake Wallenpaupack and Peck’s Pond in Pennsylvania. They travelled to Holland to visit family, also. Willem’s son, Wasili, attended boy scout camp; Willem’s son, Roel, spent some time in a state school for disabled children but Blanca had him released. He later joined the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).
In 1938 Mother Blanca became ill with breast cancer and had surgery. Wilhelmina (Minny) graduated early from high school and began college at Columbia University’s New College with her sister Blanca in 1935. During Easter vacation of 1938, the family asked her to leave college to take care of their mother Blanca. When her mother recovered from her surgery, she sailed back to Holland to be with her family there. Family friend Roel Houwink bought boat tickets for her and her daughter Minny.
Minny stayed with her mother until her death in January 1940. She arranged burial as her mother wished, settled her affairs, left Holland just before the Nazi invasion to return to America and re-enroll in New York at Columbia’s school of nursing. Author:
Blanca Poteat, grandaughter