Graphic: back to Janssen IndexMa and Pa

By J. Frederick Janssen, 1908-1990
The Isenberg family owned and operated Lihue Plantation. They were instrumental in bringing over German immigrants to work on the plantations. Germany had compulsive military training. Pa requested and got a three-year deferment. (Hawaiian immigrant labor was on a three-year contract basis). He was able to send his family in Germany more each month than he could working in a factory in Bremen!

When his three years were up the German consul told him Germany wanted Kahuku Sugar Millhim to serve time in the army. Pa said, "If they want me, tell them to come and get me. Iím staying here."

Webers & Janssens sail from Bremenó1883 Ma came from Hanover with her parents, brother and two sisters. The Webers traveled from Bremen on the same ship, the EHRENFELS, as John Janssen, but John and Rosine didnít meet for another five years.

The McFarlanes had several homes. Their city home was on Beretania Street, and their beach home at the Sheraton Waikikiís present location. They kept their horses and carriages at the beach establishment. They were Pa's main responsibility, but he was also the general handyman.

Ma went to work as a governess for the MacFarlanes, who also owned a country place over the Pali. Every summer the family, horses and carriages moved to the Windward residence. Ma and Pa fell in love and got married March 30, 1889. It them became necessary for him to seek employment with a better future. So, back to the sugar business, this time at Koloa Plantation on Kauai. This is where Frieda, Bill, Minna, Alice and Hennie were born.

Kahuku and Waimanalo Plantations Around 1906 a better opportunity for Pa popped up as a section overseer at Kahuku Plantation. I was born in 1908, the same year Alexander & Baldwin promoted Pa to Head Luna. Around 1920 Pa left Kahuku to become Head Luna at Waimanalo, and retired in 1932.

Janssen's Patriotism Questioned As Head Luna Pa had all the keys, including those to the gate and the power house. During World War I, Andrew Adams, a manager of English extraction, from back east, approached Pa and said, Mr. Janssen, it might be best if you turned in the keys to the power house." Mr. Adams, replied Pa, you were born an American. I chose to be one. Pa kept the keys.

Note: Click here to see a copy of the letter written by Hackfeld and Company February 3, 1917. This document, signed by Jack's father, Walter Vorfeld, and other executives, alerts employees to refrain from any improper comments or acts against the U.S. Government in light of the "strained" relationship between the United Stated and Germany.

graphic of hibiscus

Copyright Judy Vorfeld.
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