1 Nephi 1: 1, 3
...therefore I make a record of my proceedings in my days. And I know that the record which I make is true; and I make it with mine own hand; and I make it according to my knowledge.

^^That pretty much explains this blog.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

In Honor of My Ancestor Fathers

I see I honored my ancestor mothers on Mother's Day.  Now I will honor my ancestor fathers on this Father's Day, beginning with my dad.
Henry J. Tobelmann, Jr.
b. February 3, 1926, New Orleans, LA
d. November 14, 1989, Palm Coast, FL

My father was born in New Orleans and he and his parents never really felt 'at home' in the Northeast. They were southerners through and through. Many times my dad would refer to his offspring as 'you Yankees,' though he had lived most of his life in Pennsylvania.

My beloved Grandfather, Henry Joseph Tobelmann, Sr.
b. December 16, 1896, New Orleans, LA
d. May 4, 1968, Coatesville, PA

During the Great Depression, my grandfather lost his job at Lukens Steel Company in New Orleans.  My grandmother said he tried to make a go of selling stationery, but only made $2 a week.  Her exact words, "He only made $2 a week selling carbon paper." He was hired on at Lukens in New York, and, three years later, moved his family to East Orange, NJ while he commuted into the big city every day.  He was then transferred to Lukens Steel in Coatesville, PA at the home office.  I believe my dad was about eight years old when he moved to New Jersey.  Wouldn't that make him a Yankee, too?

My grandfather's father was Henry Rudolf August Louis Fritz Tobelmann
b. February 2, 1869 in New Orleans, LA
d. September 5, 1936 in New Orleans, LA

The picture of the children is Henry Rudolf with his two surviving sisters, Ernestine (center) and Laura.
He also had a much younger brother, August, who wasn't born at the time this photo was taken.
Henry R. had two siblings that died within days of each other in February of 1882.  I couldn't find any supporting documents on their deaths.  I assume an epidemic, illness or maybe an accident.  I know of no family stories.
On my trip to NOLA in 2001, I found his obituary and looked him up in the City Directory.
OBITUARY: TOBELMANN--At the residence, 2647 Cleveland Avenue, on Saturday evening, September 5, 1936; at 10:40 o'clock, HENRY R. TOBELMANN, in his 67th year, beloved husband of Susan Hoerner, father of Charles, Henry J., Mildred and Elfreda Tobelmann and Mrs Frank P. Deegan (Olga) and brother of August L. and Laura Tobelmann of this city and Mrs. A. E. Ewing (Ernestine) of Shreveport, La. Relatives and friends of the family, also officers and employees of sewerage and water board, of The Times-Picayune and Louisiana State Board of Health, are invited to attend the funeral, which will take place from the funeral home of Pat J. McMahon-Coburn Company, 2305 Canal Street, corner North Miro, on Monday, September 7, 1936, at 4 o'clock p.m. Interment Greenwood cemetery. (THE TIMES-PICAYUNE, MONDAY, SEPT. 7, 1936)

New Orleans, Louisiana Directories, 1890-1891:  Henry Tobelmann; Edison Electric Illuminating Co.; dynamo tender; (Location 2) 308 Gravier, New Orleans LA 1891.

I know he owned a bar, too.  My dad said he was an ornery man.  As his grandfather, he used to chase his grandchildren away and they were afraid of him.

According to Margaret Deegan Conner, his granddaughter (my dad's first cousin), Henry R. loved full-blooded fox terriers. That probably explains why Dad and Mom bought a fox terrier.  Tippy was my first dog. According to Margaret, he also had a canary. He grew peppers in his garden, and he paid his grandchildren a penny a worm to get them off the peppers.

I remember my grandfather used to recite all his names for me and I couldn't get past Rudolf because I thought of Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer.  When I met up with Margaret in NOLA in 1993, she recited all of his names, to my delight! Henry Rudolf August Louis Fritz.  I now have them all documented.  She said he was named after all his uncles, but I haven't found evidence of that.

In the bowler hat is my great-great-grandfather, Charles (Adolph Carl Friedrich August) Tobelmann, The Immigrant.
b. February 12 or 15, 1844 in Wagenfeld, Hannover, Germany
d. April 13, 1899 in New Orleans, LA
I went on a genealogy trip to NOLA in 2001 and went to the New Orleans Public Library.  I found the Obituary for Charles Tobelmann and his death certificate.
OBIT IN TIMES-PICAYUNE, N.O.L.A.: "He was a native of Germany and a resident of New Orleans for many years. He died at age 55. Mr. Tobelmann started life as a steward on the steamers plying between Bremen, Germany and New York. When the Civil War was inaugurated he remained in this country and in 1866 came to New Orleans. He engaged in the grocery business and remained in it until six years ago. At this time he retired from active life.

Besides his wife, he leaves four children, Mr. Henry Tobelmann, now in business in New Orleans, Mrs. A. E. Ewing of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Miss Laura Tobelmann and Master August Tobelmann. Mr. Tobelmann was a member of Germania Lodge #46 F. and A.M. and was buried by that order. He was one of ten original stockholders of Jax Beer [Jackson Brewery]." (Times-Picayune obit., April 14, 1899, p.3, col.4)

Death Certificate for Charles Tobelmann, found in New Orleans Public Library, Loyala Street, NOLA, Microfilm #FF650, 1899.

"Be it remembered, etc., etc. ., J. Duffy, undertaker appeared before the recorder of births, deaths and marriages, etc., who herein declares that Charles Tobelmann, (white), a native of Wagenfeld, Hanover, Germany, aged 55 years, 2 mos., departed this life yesterday (13 April 1899) at [home?] Valence and Baronne, this city [New Orleans].
Cause of death: Sarcoma of Cervical Glands (cancer of the throat, I believe)
Certificate of Dr. F. Loeber
Deceased was married and 33 years in city.
Birth place Wagenfeld, Germany."

I have a picture of Charles in his Mason garb. He looks so familiar. Family.

The first old house photo is the birthplace of Charles Tobelmann, Wagenfeld, Hannover, Germany.
This place is still in Wagenfeld and has been renovated, kept up and passed down through the Tobelmann lineage.
Georg Tobelmann is the proprietor of what is now an exclusive restaurant and tavern.

The picture, hanging in the Hofschanke Tobelmann, was taken in 1900. 

The Hofschanke Tobelmann in Wagenfeld as it appears today, taken while my brother John visited Wagenfeld in about 2006.

The house on Valence and Baronne in NOLA, was the home of Charles and Sophie Tobelmann, (photo taken 2001).

Gloria Garrett (my father's second cousin), granddaughter of Ernestine Tobelmann, found abundant information on the ancestors of our Charles Tobelmann.  She hired someone in Wagenfeld, Germany to extract information on the Tobelmann family.  We found out, according to naming customs, we did not start out as Tobelmanns at all!
Charles' father was Friedrich Wilhelm (or Henrich) Auffurth. When he married his wife, a Tobelmann widow who lived at the Tobelmann farm, he had to take that last name because your last name came from where you lived. Thus, his children were all named Tobelmann.
My brother, John, was able to travel to Wagenfeld a few years ago and meet the Tobelmanns descended from Margaretha Dorothee Louise Dehlfing Tobelmann and her first husband, Georg Friedrich Tobelmann. They are our 4th half cousins. It was a grand reunion. 
Cousin Gloria did the family a great service by finding all the information on our Auffurth ancestors back to 1714.
I don't understand why anyone would want to locate to New Orleans--it is stinkin' hot and humid there most of the year--but Charles had a plan, I guess.  He married Sophie Droge, whose parents came from Germany as well.  I do have pictures of her and her parents.

The four generation shot is of Sophie Droge Tobelmann, holding her great-granddaughter, Rheba Steadman. Her daughter, Ernestine Tobelmann Ewing and granddaughter, Regina Ewing Steadman, mother of the baby, are in the photo. Gloria Garrett sent me a copy.
Catherine Sophia Droge, b. July 3, 1845, New Orleans, LA, d. June 26, 1931, NOLA

The little house with the wrote iron fence was the home of Sophie Droge Tobelmann after the death of Charles, at 1021 Foucher St., NOLA, (photo taken 2001 by me).

Sophie's Parents were Elisa Haustermann Droge, b. March 9, 1820, Land Wursten, Amt of Dorum, Kingdom of Hannover, Germanym d. December 26, 1882, NOLA, and Nicholaus (Claus) Droge, 
b. March 4, 1812, Land Wursten, Amt of Dorum, Kingdom of Hannover, Germany, d. May 12, 1879, NOLA.
Gloria sent me those copies too, but they're not very good. But I'm happy to have them.

Wursten was originally a Frisian Land, and was a free peasant republic until 1525 (non-feudal). It is located on the right bank of the Weser estuary, just north of Bremerhaven, the main German port through which emigrants left for the US.

Rheba Steadman, the baby in the photo above, was a great genealogist.  She left her work to her sister, Gloria Steadman Garrett.  Many thanks to caring cousins who shared their hard-earned information.

I am grateful to all of my ancestor fathers (and mothers) without whom I wouldn't be who I am today.  I can't imagine the sacrifices they had to make to leave their country and start new lives here in America.  I am grateful to be born in this land of freedom.  I don't know what I did to deserve it, but it couldn't be done without those who went before.  Thank you. Thank you. Thank you...


harpunstrung said...

Dear Susan,

Will try one more time to contact you, hoping that somehow the site e-mails I sent failed.

I was thrilled to find this website, which I found Gooling my second cousin once removed, Gloria Garrett, who you acknowledged contributing to your genealogy efforts and who posted perhaps in 1995 a message in a Glasgow newspaper available on line, asking for information about her Ewing ancestors who stayed in Glasgow. Her first great grandfather, Glasgpw-born New Orleans sugar broker Greville Ewing, was my second great grandfather. I would dearly love to konw more about his life there with Jane Develin, who had 8 children, 2 who died young, 2 who stayed in the South (Charles and Albert) and 4 who moved to New Jersey and New York City (among them daughters Henrietta and Jane and sons William and Harry). Gloria's grandfather Albert Ewing attended his older sister, my maternal great grandmother's wedding to Frank Fielding in 1885 in New York city. Albert maintained correspondence with my Henrietta's daughter, my maternal grandmother Lillian Fielding Manbeck (please see Albert and Lillian's information in my Ancestry.com tree, "Mackin Manbeck Fielding Ewing" family tree). It is through Albert that all of us are related. Albert was Gloria's grandfather, and my great grand uncle, who married Ernestine Tobelmann who is your great grand aunt. While we two are related by marriage, what I found on your blog is close enough to be extended family, and I would dearly like to correspond with you, and if she is well, Gloria.

I keep assuming that the lack of response from you so far has been due to some failure of the e-mail link attached to this site. You can certainly reach me through my gmail listed on the site harpunstrung68@gmail.com. I assure you I am quite sincere and legit, careful as one needs to be with Web contacts these days. You can Google me as a neurologist in Allentown, or find me on the LVHN.org website.

If for whatever reason, you do not choose to correspond, at least let me know that, and I will respect your preference. I hope that is not the case, and until I hear otherwise, I will just keep hoping.

All best wishes to you,

Glenn A. Mackin, M.D.

Susan Knight said...

I'm not sure if I contacted you or not. You didn't leave an email address.
I am, once again, in touch with Gloria Garrett. She recently sent me some of our German genealogy.
Please contact me at tobel.knight@gmail.com and I will send you in her direction.