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Eisenmenger
Posted by: William Iseminger Date: January 04, 2002 at 21:30:29
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Some interesting information in the Rootsweb Review, vol. 5, No. 1, 2 January 2002, on Eisenmengers from Sindringen who ended up in Australia in the mid 19th century. I will try to include the entire article below, which has the Eisenmenger info near the end:

LOST DOWN UNDER NO MORE
By Peter Schuck peterschuck@earthlink.net

It was late last year when my third-cousin-once-removed of
Zweiflingen, Württemberg, Germany, with whom I had been communicating
for some time advised me that his aunt with whom I have communicated
often over the years and visited in 1970 had brought out of storage
some old ecclesiastical documents -- 1938 transcriptions from the
original Evangelical church books of the neighboring town of
Sindringen, whence my great-grandfather, Philipp RUDOLPH, and a
brother of his had immigrated to the United States, probably in 1866.
The originals were destroyed during World War II.

What had prompted her to pull out the records were my questions to her
nephew having to deal with the natural father of great-grandfather’s
mother by the name of Michael FAHRBACH of not too distant Neunstetten.

The records indicate that my 3-great-grandmother who had had the
affair with FAHRBACH was actually born Katharine Sophie STREINER in
1799 at nearby Ernsbach and that she had immigrated to Australia in
1862, whereas we had previously known her by the surname of ABEL,
believing that she had married a STREINER after my 2-great-
grandmother’s birth, and we were all struck by this immigration at
her rather advanced age, which left us asking ourselves whether she
had actually made the potentially dangerous voyage alone. We surmised
that she hadn’t, for we had known from my cousin’s late grandmother
that my great-grandfather’s "sister," Katharina Magdalena, had also
immigrated to Oz at about that same time following the deaths of their
parents, in 1859 and 1864, respectively. But how to prove it?

The German oral family tradition stated that the Australian relations
had had a farm in Queensland, but the Germans were of the opinion
that the Australian branch had died out owing to a communication
received from Down Under in the early 1950s which they had perceived
to be a solicitation of heirs. In any case, there had been no
communication with any kin in the southern hemisphere since about the
late 1920s. I thereupon contacted a childhood friend of mine who has
been residing in Australia for decades now, sending him all of the
information I had accumulated, and asked if he wouldn’t do a little
sleuthing for me.

He located the Genealogical Society of Queensland (GSQ) and passed the
data along to them. They came back with a modicum of success,
providing a partial passengers list from the ship "La Rochelle," which
had sailed from Hamburg and reached Moreton Bay, Queensland in 1862
with both Katharina Magdalena RUDOLPH, 17, and Katharine Sophie ABEL
(first name spellings had been anglicized, and only these were given),
63, aboard in addition to two other previously unknown ABEL women from
Sindringen who turned out to be Katharine Sophie’s adolescent
daughters.

The GSQ also furnished death data for Katharine Sophie, which included
what I later learned was a reference to her parents, namely John
STRAIGHNER (quite obviously a transliteration of STREINER) and
Catharine, whose names we had not known before. But the passengers
list, having entered her as ABEL, was now contradicting the church
record which called her STREINER and which had trumped the earlier
family tradition according to which she had been known to us as ABEL.

The GSQ also provided me with a way out of this dilemma; they passed
along a form which had been completed during the Australian
bicentennial celebration a few years earlier by one Albert John ABEL
of New South Wales, and on it he had made reference to one of
Katharine Sophie’s daughters. I set my friend to work to try to find
this fellow via the telephone white pages, while I turned to the
RootsWeb ABEL Message Board and was successful first in locating him.
Albert had posted three messages in 1999, wherein he mentioned
Sindringen, Catharine ABEL, and the transliterated surname STRAIGHNER;
his were the only ABEL messages emanating from Oz.

I contacted Albert and laid out the story before him as I understood
it. He was able to clear up some of the confusion with respect to
Katharine Sophie. She had married, Johann ABEL, subsequent to having
given birth to my 2-great-grandmother by Mr. FAHRBACH. The ABELS’
son, Albert’s progenitor, had immigrated to Australia in 1855, and
after her husband’s death, she determined to bring herself and her two
daughters to join him Down Under, accompanied by Katharina Magdalena
(all four ladies were entered consecutively on the passengers list).
And contrary to the German family’s belief that the Australian branch
had died out, Albert was able to supply a wealth of data indicating
that fact that the Australians had actually proliferated rather
nicely. But clarity was turned on its head with respect to what he was
able to inform about Katharina Magdalena.

Albert had earlier obtained the renunciation of citizenship documents
for the four women from the Württemberg State Archive, and on
Katharina Magdalena’s record the scribe called her Katharina FAHRBACH,
surnamed RUDOLPH; she herself signed the page as Katharina FAHRBACH.
Moreover, if she had been my great-grandfather’s sister, she wasn’t
residing in my 2-great-grandfather’s household at the time of her
emigration, for she had become the ward of a Mr. KÖHLER of nearby
Eichach, who two years later became the guardian of Philipp RUDOLPH
after the death of his father and before his immigration to the New
World. But what is equally as singular is the fact that my 2-great-
grandfather, having remarried, had at the same time become the
guardian of his former mother-in-law’s two daughters. So we all began
to ask ourselves, "Just who really was Katharina Magdalena FAHRBACH,
surnamed RUDOLPH, anyway?"

Once in Australia Katharina Magdalena had quickly married a Mr. SIEMON
by whom she had many children. However, Albert’s data with respect to
these and their offspring only span as far as the early 20h century
(he had made some attempts to track the descendants down but
unsuccessfully). Of particular note among Albert’s materials was the
fact that two of the SIEMON daughters had married the same fellow
named EISENMENGER. I queried Albert on this, and he explained that the
one sister had died before the second marriage; although, there was
issue from both matrimonies. Now, among the materials which Albert had
provided me was a complete passengers list from the ship "La
Rochelle," and there on a page separate from the one listing the
entries of the four women is an entry for a fellow by the name of
EISENMENGER also of Sindringen. The coincidence was too serendipitous.

So, back I went to the RootsWeb Message Boards, searching for
EISENMENGERS in Oz in hopes of learning anything pertinent about
Katharina Magdalena from her present-day descendants. I found a
posting from 2000 by a John EISENMENGER, of Brisbane, who indicated
therein that his ancestors had come from Sindringen. I posted a reply
and eventually got a response from him; however, in the interim
Sharon SUCHORONCZAK of Murgon, Queensland also chimed in to this
budding conversation, saying that she too descends from EISENMENGERS
of Sindringen.

Sharon explained that there were actually six EISENMENGER siblings who
had left Sindringen around the mid-19th century, three sons to
Australia and two sons and a daughter to the States, and she advised
that one of the contemporary U.S. descendants had compiled the
EISENMENGER FAMILY BOOK, inclusive of the Australian branch. From it
she was able to ascertain that John EISENMENGER descends from that
fellow "La Rochelle" passenger (she hadn’t personally known or known
of John heretofore), whereas she and the husband of the two SIEMON
sisters descend from another of the immigrant sons who just happened
to share the same wife owing to the early death of the elder brother.

As I type, Sharon is snail-mailing me photocopies from the book; she
says that she knows of a SIEMON/EISENMENGER descendant she will try to
put me in touch with, and in the meantime Albert has also finally made
contact with one such descendant himself. So the research goes on, but
I am absolutely thrilled to have been able to make these connections
with my distant kin Down Under, and RootsWeb has played a significant
part in enabling me to do so.


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