Ernestine Wilhelmina (Walter) Van Sant

Photo courtesy of Jimmy and Carmen Shane
Photo courtesy of Jimmy and Carmen Shane

(April 1, 1874 - June 24, 1971)

The Lusk Herald
July 1, 1971

97-Year-Old Mrs. Van Sant Dies Last Thurs.

Mrs. Ernestine Van Sant, 97, a resident of Van Tassell since 1915, died at Chadron, Neb., June 24. Funeral service was held at the First Baptist Church of Chadron Saturday, with the Rev. Gail A. Patterson officiating. Burial was in the afternoon at the Van Tassell Cemetery.

Ernestine Wilhelmina Walter was born to Elizabeth and Frederick C. Walter, April 1, 1874, in Freudental, Wruttemberg, Germany. At 18 she went to Dulwich, London as nursery governess for over two years. She returned to Germany and in the fall of 1895 came to America and lived with a family in New Jersey also as a governess.

In 1901 she went home to Germany and worked in Stuttgart until the fall of 1902. She then returned to Newark, N.J., where in 1910 she and Nicholas Van Sant were married. Shortly afterward they came west to homestead near relatives from Peoria, Ill., three miles southwest of Van Tassell, Wyo. Three children were born to them on this homestead.

In the fall of 1915, they moved into Van Tassell where Mr. Van Sant operated a business until his death in 1926.

Mr. and Mrs. Van Sant were charter members of the Van Tassell Congregational Church. Mrs. VanSant's life was centered around her children, her church and helping others. She lived in her home in Van Tassell until four years ago when she came to Chadron to live with her son, Nick VanSant. She resided in the Crestview Nursing Home after breaking her hip in 1970.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband and five brothers and sisters. Survivors include a daughter, Mrs. John Totter (Eliza) of Bethesda, Md., sons Newton E. of Seattle, Wash., and Nick A. of Chadron; six grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren, a number of nieces and nephews in Germany.

Her interest in and love for others made her dear to the hearts of all who knew her, said a family friend.

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