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 go 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.
New photos sent by Shirley Gertsch Bartels of her parents and grandparents
November, 2019. These photos have come my way and help to tell the story of the Gertsch family who developed the new Shattuck Dairy in the late 1890s. That property is now the Arranmore housing development and the Montclair School.
Paternal grandparents of Shirley Gertsch Bartels: Christ and Katie Gertsch
Christian Gertsch (1869-1949) and Katie Tannler Gertsch (1871-1948) are the paternal grandparents of Shirley Gertsch Bartels. Christian went by “Christ”, pronounced with a soft “i”, as in “mist”.
You’ll remember that the brothers Peter and Fritz Gertsch came from Switzerland to establish dairies in the new Oregon territory. Peter Gertsch married Katie Tannler and was soon the father of a young son, named Pete Gertsch. Alas, Peter died suddenly while the baby was still an infant. In the tradition of the Swiss families, the brother Christian was summoned from Switzerland to take on Peter’s role. Christian then married his brother’s widow, Katie, and became the stepfather to young Pete.
Maternal grandparents of Shirley Gertsch Bartels: Christ and Rosalie Balmer
Christian Balmer (1860-1941) and Rosalie Gloor Balmer (1871-1957) are the maternal grandparents of Shirley Gertsch Bartels. This Christian also went by “Christ”. Christ and Rosalie Balmer were the parents of Rosalie Balmer Gertsch. Yes, mother and daughter were both named Rosalie. The Balmer family was involved with the local dairy of John Hoffman further east on SW Vermont Ave. and into the (now) Burlingame area.
Parents of Shirley Gertsch Bartels: Peter Albert Gertsch and Rosalie Balmer Gertsch
This young Pete (named Peter Albert Gertsch) grew up in the dairy and inherited it. Pete (1895-1972) married Rosalie Balmer Gertsch (1900-1977) and went on to become parents to today’s Shirley Gertsch Bartels who grew up in Garden Home, attended Oregon State, and married her veterinarian husband, Dr. Jan Bartels.