The Vandegrifts of Mower County

About the Author

Major Figures
Early Vandergrift/Vandegrift History
John Miller, His Children, Their Spouses & Children
John Miller Vandegrift
John Miller Vandegrift Jr.
Thomas Hart Benton Vandegrift
Jacob Vandegrift Jr.
Fanny Vandegrift Stevenson
About the Author
Areas Needing Further Work


Elaine, Sunny & Robert Bicking


Robert’s youthful interest in electronics led him to get his ham radio license while in high school in 1954 and it has remained one of his hobbies (with a 39 year Rip van Winkle nap) & earn Bachelors (1961) & Masters (1971) degrees in Electrical Engineering at the University of Minnesota. He retired in January 1999 after a 37 year career at Honeywell where he enjoyed his work in R & D on a wide variety of projects, ranging from controls for aircraft such as the SR-71 (world's fastest airplane), missiles & satellites; to automotive sensors; receiving 11 patents and authoring over 30 technical papers & magazine articles, including many that were presented at national & international symposiums. He contributed chapters to two books on sensors. He also authored many articles on motorcycle competition including the famous Peoria TT, in which he had a cover picture on a motorcycle newspaper. Ham radio did not escape his pen & he had had several articles published on his ham radio exploits.


Robert married Elaine VandeGrift in 1964. She is also a 1961 Graduate of the University of Minnesota. She taught 4th & 2nd grade for several years before starting a family. She is a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, tracing her lineage to John Miller. They have two grown and successful children, both engineering graduates of the University of Illinois, and 4 grandchildren. Robert's hobbies include riding bicycles & motorcycles. He also restored 2 motorcycles, mainly to prove that he could do it.


3 of his grandparents were deceased before he was born & the last one died before he was a year old, making genealogy a “natural” even though he waited until retirement to pursue it. It is an activity that is never complete since there is always one more bit of information that could make the line of descent clearer.




Areas Needing Further Work