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Our ancestors are mentioned in the registers of baptism, betrothal and burying of the 'Hervormde Kerk' (Reformed Church) until 1811. Sometimes in the registers of marriages is mentioned: 'Gereformeerd'. The increasing fade in the church and the denial of certain facts like the work of conciliation of the Lord Jesus Christ, was followed by attempts of recovery, which resulted in 1834 in the "Afscheiding" (Separation). During my research it proved to me that many Sleijsters were engaged very serious with the belief.
First of all there is in 1844 the poem of gravedigger Albertus Sleijster, in which he gave an impressive evidence of his faith: "Although the mourning go around, he shall not fear for dead and grave".
In the days after the "Afscheiding" there were also some Sleijsters who switched over to such "Christelijk Afgescheiden Gemeente" (Chistian Separated Community). There followed eve prosecution for the separated, just for that only fact that they separated from the 'official' church. They catches among other things quarter of soldiers. And some of them became sentence to imprisonment. The result was that also many 'separated' were attracted by the emigration to the free America.
Roelof Sleijster from Arnhem, who studied there some years for pastor by the separated pastor ref. Brummelkamp, stopped his study just before he was ready, to scout out 'the promised land'. In 1846 he departed and settled in Alto, Wisconsin.
According to the American immigrant registration J. Sleister arrived in januar 1847 with his wife and 5 children in America with destination Holland, Michigan. That was the colony of the separated ref. A.C. van Raalte. It has not become clear to me if J.Sleister could be the same person as Jan Hendrik who also came to America in 1847 but with destination Evansville in Indiana or Brunswick, Chariton in Missouri. Of J.Sleister I could not find any more data.
The in 1847 to Heerde departed Warnerius van Oukerk Sleijster became in Heerde a member of the "Christelijke Afgescheiden Gemeente" (Christian Separated Community).
In april 1847 his second cousin Hendrika Sleijster, departed with her husband Jacob Smeenk and her 4 children from the Walstraat in Zutphen to Pella in Iowa.
Her brother Warnerius Sleijster departed in 1852 to Pella in Iowa, the colony of the separated pastor ref. J.H. Scholte. In this place ref. Scholte tried to fit out a church to the new testamentic model as a free brother assembly without a leading "dominee". Not everyone was ready for it. There came many problems. Warnerius left Pella and departed to Orange City 20 years later, maybe as a result of the problems. He maintained contacts with Warnerius van Oukerk Sleijster in Heerde/NL.
When you have a look at the bible texts on many gravestones, many Sleijsters did keep the faith.
The family grave in Angerlo
On 20 December 2000 I made these (webcam-)photo's on the
cemetery in Angerlo.