Welcome to -
Smith - Rice - VanHaelewyn & Pudlo
- Family History -

The Charles Rice family, circa 1926.

Disclaimer: You may use the copyrighted biographies written by me only for your own personal use but please do not post them to any public viewing site such as Ancestry.com unless your tree is set to "private."

This family history site is dedicated to four main families. My dad's side: Smith and Rice (main surnames are: Smith, Rice, Petersen, Linebrink, Kennel, Hughes, Dickey, Castor, Myers, Severns, King, Haynes, Church, Wineland, Stone, Crowell, Peck, Tracy, Nickerson, Williams and Snow) and my Mom's side: VanHaelewyn and Pudlo (main surnames are VanHaelewyn, Van de Poele, Pudlo and Kielbasa). My ancestors on the Smith side originate from Schleswig, Denmark and the Rices were from England, then Kerry, Ireland. My moms VanHaelewyn family comes from Klerken, Belgium and the Pudlo's were from the small village of Lubno, Austria.

Dominic and Mary Pudlo, circa 1965
Dominic and Mary Pudlo, circa 1965

This site has many useful features that are not immediately obvious. Feel free to spend a little time looking down each item in the menu to the left. You can even create your own charts and ancestry trees and find out if (and how) you are related to some of the famous relatives you see on the site and see who shares your Birthday or Anniversary.

Most people enjoy the "Notable People and Mysteries" section to the left where you can see the not-so-common ways some people have passed away and also where you can see the famous or significant relatives we have in the tree.

Thank you for taking a moment to check out my Family Tree. I've had (and am still having) a lot of fun "treasure hunting" for documents, information and especially old pictures about our family. Anyone that knows me is aware of my love for investigation and I started working on the family tree many years ago, taking over for my great aunt, cousin and dad. Along the way I have met dozens of new cousins I didn't know I had and their generosity with information and pictures over the years has been greatly appreciated. -Andrew Smith

Special Notes for New Members

PLEASE REGISTER SO YOU CAN VIEW THE INFORMATION AND PHOTOS FOR EVERYONE! Family members should note that information about living members are accessible only having a user name and password. Please note that this site imposes various restrictions on access to the personal data and media for non-registered users. Please fill in the "notes" box when registering explaining how you are related.

New to the site? The best way to find information, pictures or documents for your family is to use the search boxes at the upper left corner of the main page and locate the person you are looking for. Each person has their individual page and you will see anything connected to them there. Once on the individual pages, you can also click on the children's or parents' names to see those pages. Photo's are always at the bottom. You are welcome to scroll through the photo's or obituaries links to the left but you will scroll through literally hundreds of them to find the people you are looking for and that can take a LOT of time.

Search The family's cemetery records at by entering a surname and clicking search:

Restrict search to


Feature Articles

feature 1 H ans Smith Family History The story of Hans and Kjesten Veien Smidt, who were the first Smith's to arrive in America from Denmark in 1881 and were my third great grandparents.

J ohn H. Smith Family History The story of Hans and Kjesten's son, John, and his family who settled in Chebanse, Illinois.

C hristopher Petersen Family History The story of Mary Petersen Smith's family arriving in 1885 and settling in Chebanse, Illinois. Mary was John's wife.

G eorge H. Smith Family History The story of John's son, George and his Ohio native wife, Myrtle and his large family of 17 children.

J ohn I. Smith Family History The story of my grandparents, John and Dorothy Rice Smith and his family from Chicago.

feature 2 N otable Ancestors and Unusual Deaths There are many notable, famous and interesting ancestors in our family as well as many out of the ordinary deaths.

Rice Family

J onathan Rice Family History The story of Jonathan Rice and his eventful life including fighting in the War of 1812, marrying twice and having a total of twenty children.

T homas J. Rice Family History The story of Jonathan's son, Thomas, who came to Illinois from Indiana at a young age and married New York native Alice Haynes.

C harles M. Rice Family History The story of Thomas' son and Spanish American War veteran, Charles, and his family of eight children-including my grandmother.

VanHaelewyn and Pudlo Families

feature 3 V anHaelewyn Family History Settling in Chicago, the Desire' and Eliza VandePoele VanHaelewyn family arrived in America from Belgium on August 25, 1910 on the Mauretania. Their son was my grandfather, Val.

P udlo and Kielbasa Family History The story of the Pudlo and Kielbasa families. Coming to America from Lubno, Austria between 1906 and 1913 and eventually settling in Joliet, Illinois and parts of Wisconsin and Indiana.

King and Church Families

feature 4 W illiam M. King Family History The eventful life story of my great, great grandparents William and Clara Church King. A widower at age 44, he was postmaster of McLean County, CIA employee, restaurant owner...and accidental arsonist!

  G eorge Church Family History The story of prominent McLean citizen, postmaster, insurance salesman and constable George Church and his family.

Linebrink Family

L udwig Linebrink Family History The story of my fourth great grandfather and German immigrant Ludwig Linebrink and his five children, three of which served in the Civil War. They were known as some of the first settlers of Defiance, Ohio.

Contact Us

email imageIf you have any questions or suggestions about the information on this site, please contact us. Please note only emails from logged-in members will be sent.