MAKING THEIR LUCK is the personal family genealogy of the Zehetmeier family, and the story of how they immigrated from Bavaria in 1883 to settle first in the coal region of Kansas and then the harsh Oklahoma plains at the turn of the Twentieth Century. It is reflective of the common immigrant experience in America; that of leaving a country with no prospects to voyage to another in hopes of making a better life. Originally motivated to just discover his family?s place of origin in Germany, the author?s genealogical search turned into a lifetime pursuit of his family roots. From their first known ancestors in Germany, it follows their family tree to the author?s great grandfather crossing the Atlantic to settle in Kansas during its frontier times, and to later take a growing family by wagon across the plains to build a homestead in western Oklahoma. It is a journey over a path well-known to genealogists; years of detective work in libraries, archives, vital statistics, church records and family interviews to capture the story of his ancestors. He has added from local histories of the regions his family lived to gain a better perspective of their life and times. It tells of the hard scrabble existence of coal-mining, and surviving a near disaster, to cutting a sod house out of the desolate prairie to make a 160-acre homestead a place to raise a family and prosper. Far from just a ledger of names and birthdates, it describes how they worked and endured to carve out a life in a new country and set a legacy of hard work and integrity that has spanned their generations. The title itself stems from a popular family phrase: ?If I only work hard enough, I?ll make my own luck.?