The parents of my great grandfather, Johann August Fredrick, were a brick wall for the past five years. So, it is exciting to be able to share what I know about his mother, Susanna Koenig Fredrich.
It was three days after Christmas in a small town in the province of Posen, Prussia when Susanna Koenig was born on the 28 December 1808. She was born near what is now Schubin and Bromberg, Poland. This was during a period of unrest with the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation being dissolved during the Napoleonic Wars, two years prior. This was a time of upheaval throughout Europe. The Kingdom of Prussia was a large piece of the new German empire.
While Napoleon was in charge he abolished serfdom. During serfdom, it was the nobility's role to protect; the clergy's role to pray; and everyone else worked. Susanna's family would have been workers.
These changes were only in effect as long as Napoleon was in power. Most of his changes were reversed upon his defeat. Serfdom was brought back to many areas. I imagine Susanna's family was impacted by these changes during her early years.
Susanna Koenig married Christoph Fredrich in 1828, at the age of 20. They had seven children, (two sons and five daughters) all born in Prussia:
- Wilhelmine, born 18 September 1832
- Henriette, born 29 October 1834
- Amalia, born 1843
- Johann August, born 8 January 1845
- Ottilie, born July 1851
Four of Susanna's children, Henriette, Amalia, J. August, and Ottilie, immigrated to Manistee, Michigan, United States, as did Susanna. J. August was the first, coming in the early 1870's. He was one of the early settlers of the area. Her daughter, Henriette, who was married to John Zobel, immigrated in April of 1872.