Emilie Friedericke Luise Draeger (1850-1910)
Emilie Friedericke Luise Draeger was born on 12 Oct 1850 in Dobberphul, Pommern, Prussia as the second child of Gottfried Friederick Draeger and Joanna Friedericke Streich. She had six siblings, namely: Carl August Ferdinand, Carl Friedrich, August Wilhelm, Charles Frederick, Wilhelmina, and Mathilda Louisa Frederika. Her older brother, Carl August Ferdinand, and next brother, Carl Friedrich, both died as infants in Prussia.
Emilie’s hometown of Dobberphul is the northwestern part of modern-day Poland. When the Draeger family lived there, it was in Prussia, but the town is now called Pyrzyce and is in Poland (or, according to other sources it may be called Dobropole Gryfińskie, Poland). In 1852, a few years before the family left, the population of the town was 5,795.
On 16 Apr 1856, when Emilie was five-years old, she, her parents, and her younger brother August Wilhelm, left Prussia for America. They sailed on the ship called the Gerhardt and arrived in New York on 9 Jun 1856.
Like most immigrants in general, and most passengers on the Gerhardt, the Draeger family were passengers between decks. Tween-deck or steerage passengers, as they were often called, traveled in the deck right below the main deck of a sailing ship. Immigrant ships were usually ships that were originally built for hauling cargo. To accommodate the waves of immigrants making the trans-Atlantic crossing, many of these ships were fitted with temporary partitions to create a passenger area where cargo would normally be held. When the ships made the trip back to Europe, the temporary structures were removed to, once again, hold just cargo.
This was nothing like our modern-day cruise ships. The passenger compartment probably only had a ceiling that was six to eight-feet tall and the bunks, stacked two high, were made of rough boards, and maybe, if they were lucky, had straw mattresses. Privacy was not an option. The Draegers shared the space with the other 145 between-deck passengers. The entire Draeger family would have shared a single bunk. It was probably an exciting, tense, and possibly miserable trip for her parents, but it is hard to imagine how the 54-day voyage was for Emilie, a five-year old child.
The Draeger family made their way from New York to Wisconsin. They were living at the Town of Berlin, Marathon County, Wisconsin at the time of the 1860 Federal Census and then in the Town of Maine, Marathon County, Wisconsin in 1870.
When she was 21, she married Carl F. Fehlhaber, son of Carl Friedrich Fehlhaber and Ernestine-Caroline Neuman, on 21 May 1872 in the Town of Maine, Marathon, Wisconsin. The couple settled at the Town of Berlin.
Carl F. Fehlhaber and Emilie Friedericke Luise Draeger had the following children:
- Mathilde A. Emilie Fehlhaber was born on 07 Jul 1873 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She died on 23 May 1950 in Hamburg, Marathon, Wisconsin. She married Otto Albert A. Beilke on 30 Sep 1893 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin.
- Emma Wilhelmine Maria Fehlhaber was born on 14 Feb 1875 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She married Otto Carl Edward Anklam on 17 May 1895 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She died on 12 Nov 1932 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin.
- Carl Fredrich Henre Fehlhaber was born on 02 Mar 1877 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. He married Martha Maria Anna Hoeft on 04 Jul 1906 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. He died on 11 Jan 1952 in Wausau, Marathon, Wisconsin.
- Maria Pauline Louise Fehlhaber was born on 07 Mar 1879 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She died on 12 Dec 1879 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin.
- Alice Rosalie Fehlhaber was born on 10 Sep 1880 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She married Frederick A Helmut Aschbrenner on 26 Nov 1902 in Evangelical Lutheran Church, Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She died on 04 Jan 1970 in Sunnyvale Infirmary, Wausau, Marathon, Wisconsin.
- Laura Fehlhaber was born on 13 Oct 1882 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She married Edward Albert Reinhart Aschbrenner on 31 Oct 1906 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She died on 10 Oct 1956 in Wausau, Marathon, Wisconsin.
- Robert Edward O. Fehlhaber was born on 06 Dec 1889 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. He married Anna Schuster on 12 Apr 1911 in Marathon, Wisconsin. He married Wilhelmine Emilie Pauline Hoeft on 27 Sep 1919 in Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. He died on 12 Feb 1983 in Wausau, Marathon, Wisconsin.
Note: the immigration date for Emilie did not get calculated correctly in the 1900 census. Based on the ship records, she clearly came in 1856, a couple months before Carl Fehlhaber arrived with his parents, but she is listed in the census coming a year later than him. This is probably just a math error. When the census taker asked how old she was when she came, she likely answered “five,” but the census taker probably did the math based on her birth year and didn’t take into account that she immigrated early in the year and had a birthday late in the year.
Emilie Friedericke Luise Draeger Fehlhaber died on 12 Dec 1910 at the Town of Berlin, Marathon, Wisconsin. She was 60-years old at the time of her death. She was buried in Friedenshain Cemetery, Marathon County, Wisconsin.
Where is she in the tree?
Selected Sources, Notes, and Further Reading:
Børge Solem, “Steerage Passengers – Emigrants Between Decks,” Norway-Heritage Hands Across the Sea, Web, 5 Oct 2017, http://www.norwayheritage.com/steerage.htm.
“Dobropole Pyrzyckie,” Wikipedia, Web, 5 Oct 2017, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dobropole_Pyrzyckie.
“List of municipalities in the Province of Pomerania, A–H,” Wikipedia, Web, 5 Oct 2017, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_municipalities_in_the_Province_of_Pomerania,_A%E2%80%93H#D.
“Pyrzyce,” Wikipedia, Web, 5 Oct 2017, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrzyce.