Carl Mansel and Louise Obst of Breslau

My Great Great Grandparents from the Mansel and Obst families of Breslau in Schlesien, Prussia, Germany

1905 Map of Schlesien, Prussia

Carl Mansel
Carl Mansel was born about 1843, in Schlesien, Germany. He had one daughter with Louise Obst on January 31, 1863. He probably died about 1925 in Germany, but his complete history is unknown. It is likely that he never married Louise Obst, and that their daughter Emilie was born out of wedlock.

Kreis Nimptsch
Louise Obst
When Louise Obst was born about 1845, in Klein Ellguth, Kreis Nimptsch, Breslau, Silesia, Prussia -- now Ligota Mała (Dzierzoniow poviat) -- her father, Friedrich Obst, aka "Fritz", was probably about 25 and her mother, Johanna Dorothea Kosch, was likely 20. Louise had one daughter with Carl Mansel on January 31, 1863. The date of her death is unknown, but she most likely stayed in Schlesien and never came to America.  Louise's parents raised her daughter, so not much else is known about her.


1820’s Birth of Louise’s Parents

The first evidence of Louise Obst’s parents came from her sister’s death certificate, listing Fritz Obst and Johanna Poach as her parents. Poach later proved to be the wrong surname as Johanna's actual maiden name was Koach. I assume they were born in the 1820’s, but I do know know much else about them, or if they had any other children besides the two sisters -- I would assume so.

1845 Birth of Louise Obst
Since Louise had a child in 1863, I suspect she was born around 1845. I don't think it can be that much earlier, as her only known sibling was born in 1855. Her birthplace is also likely to be similar to her sister, being Klein Ellguth, Kreis Nimptsch, Schlesien -- near Reichenbach and Breslau. The small village is now in Poland, and can be found under it's new name of Ligota Mała, Dzierżoniów.

8 Sep 1855 Birth of Louise’s Sister
Louise's sister Marie A. Obst was born on September 8, 1855, in 
Klein Ellguth, Kreis Nimptsch, Breslau, Schlesien, Prussia when Louise Obst was 10 years old. Marie went on to marry Henry Stoecker, have three children, and eventually died in Idaho, USA in 1927.

31 Jan 1863 Birth of a Daughter
Emilie Clara was born in Breslau on 31 Jan 1863. She never took her father’s name, and I haven’t located a birth record or a marriage record yet. It is quite possible she was illegitimate. She was raised by her maternal grandparents, Fritz Obst and Johanna Poach.   Emilie went on to marry Paul Zimmer and had ten children before passing away in Iowa, USA in 1950.

1863 to 1887 Raising their Granddaughter
Emilie lived in the home of her maternal grandparents in Klein Ellguth, and was given their surname, “Obst”. When she reached her teens she worked in a very wealthy home as a cook, and prepared many gourmet delights — roast pig (complete with an apple in its mouth), wild game, and many other exotic dishes. She spoke with pride of her position in the household, and noted that all menial tasks, as dishwashing and cleaning, were performed by servants. At Easter time she made hundreds of Easter eggs, and brought this joyous Easter custom to America. Many of us remember hunting Easter Eggs in her home.

1880 Death of Louise's Mother
Sometime before 1883 was when Louise's mother, Johanna Dorothea Obst neé Kosch died in Klein Ellguth.  She is listed as deceased on the 1883 marriage record of Marie Obst.

1883 Marriage of Louise's Sister
This newly found marriage certificate has a wealth of information, and really gives me the names of Louise's parents correctly for the first time. On 29 May 1883 in Altona, Hamburg, Germany, Marie Emilie Karoline Obst married Heinrich Wilhelm Gottfried Stöcker. They were both Luthernan, he a shoemaker, and she a servant.  The bride's father is listed as Friedrich Obst, living in Klein Ellguth, Kreis Nimptsch, and her mother as  Johanna Dorothea Kosch, deceased. Right after their marriage, the couple left for America, and were niece Emilie and Paul Zimmer's sponsors in 1887 when that young couple headed over as well.
1883 Hamburg marriage of Marie Obst and Heinrich Stöcker

1887 Marriage of their daughter, Emilie
Paul John Zimmer married Emilie Clara Obst (Mansel) on February 19, 1887, in Germany. I have not found their Civil Marriage Certificate yet, but it is most likely they married in Kreis Nimptsch near Reichenbach.

The story goes that when Emilie was 24 years old, a devout Lutheran, she fell in love with a Catholic boy Paul Zimmer. He gave up his religious affiliation to marry her. Most of the members of his family did not think kindly of his act, but his sister, Pauline Zimmer Walthart, a very loving, understanding person even helped Emilie dress for the wedding. They immediately left for America following their marriage.
Zimmer-Obst Family Tree

1888 Emilie and Paul arrive in America
They left to make their home in America, and experienced a very unpleasant crossing. It took weeks for them to make the stormy trip. An epidemic of smallpox swept the ship and many, many passengers were buried at sea.

Paul and Emilie Zimmer arrived in Baltimore on March 25, 1888 aboard the Kronprinz Friedrich Wilhelm, a Nordeutscher Llloyd ship, which left from Bremen, Germany. The booking included rail passage on the Baltimore & Ohio towards the West.

In later years Emilie's desire to return to Germany for a visit was clouded by the events of this early ocean voyage.

After they docked, they took a train for the West. They arrived in Benton County in the middle of the night. The conductor forgot to have them get off the train at Garrison, and took them on to Dysart (Reinbeck). Paul went to get help, and Emilie sat all alone, in the dark, on a bread box outside the locked railway station. She was a stranger in a country with a language that she could neither speak nor understand. She recalled this experience as being the loneliest event of her life. They found help, and were taken to the home of her Aunt Marie Stoeker née Obst in Garrison.

That summer Paul found work near Keystone as a farm laborer and Emilie helped in the St. Clair home. They were miles apart, and the only time they got to see each other was on Sunday when they walked to meet each other.

Unknown Death of Carl 
Carl passed away in Germany at some unknown date.

Unknown Death of Louise
Louise passed away in Germany at some unknown date.

My 8 Families
Bodenheimer-Gruenwald of Baden
Kessler-Spies of Berleburg
Maass-Lachmann of Berlin
Lukes-Martyn of Cornwall
Levy-Landsberger of Posen
Zimmer-Petau of Reichenbach
Wolff-Wolff of Posen
Mansel-Obst of Breslau