Antonius Holtmann

“”Germans to America” in Three Parts:  Pitfalls without End. .  .”

(Translated by La Vern J. Rippley, editor of the Society for German American Studies Newsletter.  Published in: Society for German American Studies Newsletter 22(2001)1: 1-6; 2: 10-13; 3: 17-23; in German: “Germans to America” im Dreierpack: Fallstricke und kein Ende . . .. In: Genealogie 49(2000)11/12, 353-373; 50(2001)1/2, 437-447, also availble in the internet: http://www.dausa.de: “Passagierlisten”)

Volumes 61-64, with an assessment of the passenger lists from the National Archives of the United States came on the market in 2000 from the Center for Immigration Research (Glazier, Ira A./Filby, William P.: Germans to America. Lists of Passengers Arriving at U.S.Ports. Volumes 1-64. Wilmington, DE: Scholarly Resources 1988-2000; hereafter cited as GTA);  publication for the dates of 1850-1874 and 1875-1888 have been available for purchase in CD-ROM format since 1999 (http://www.genealogy.com; hereafter CD); and since June 2000 Bremerhaven in its "German Emigrant Database “(http://www.deutsche-auswanderer-datenbank.de; hereafter DAD) also publishes the names of the emigrants for the years 1850-1891 in "cooperation with the Center for Immigration Research at the Balch Institute of Temple University at Philadelphia/ U. S. A."  This total offering from a research point of view provokes a comparison of the digitized with the printed data base, that is to say, the question whether the implied competence and perfection of the data banks has been achieved while it also begs the question whether such competence extends to the volumes in the more recent book editions, Volumes 61-64.


In Search of Vitus Bleisensteiner:  Compounding Deficits

Let me begin with a realistic piece of fiction.  Nancy McKinley, born Bleisensteiner, is living at Scribner, Nebraska in a Lutheran parish, among descendants of Oldenburg immigrants who arrived beginning in 1870.  Catholic, and an only child, Nancy's own children are now grown up and gone from home.  Thus Nancy has the time to do her family history.  She is well aware that one of her immigrant forefathers was called Vitus Bleisensteiner, who had to have arrived in the states around 1850.

The question then is whether, following the death of her parents, the name Bleisensteiner still exists anywhere in the U. S.?   Or for that matter in Germany?  No web site  contains any such name.  Nancy McKinley, however, did www.teleauskunft.de remember the "German Emigrant Datbase (DAD)" about which she got word in Bremerhaven, as having opened on June 1, 2000.  Thus she called up a good friend in Kiel who inquired at DAD, paid her 30 DM, and waited for some kind of response, which in fact arrived on June 14:  "No Vitus Bleisensteiner name appears in the data base."  Perhaps the name is there but illegible, or conceivably the passenger list no longer exists, maybe he did not use a German harbor, perchance he did not emigrate any time between 1850 and 1888, but maybe emigrated previous to that date.  Possibly he even migrated as a stow away.

Therefore Nancy McKinley called up the German-American Heritage Society of Lincoln Nebraska where the service personnel checked the brand new 1999 CD-ROM  "Passenger Lists--Germans to America 1850-1874" and discovered that a certain Vitus Bleisensteiner actually arrived in New York from Germany on October 23, 1854 on board the Audubon.  Since he boarded ship in Bremen he just could be the one she was seeking.   Nancy would like to know his place of birth; the fact that it was Germany she had known all along.  So she checked once more in the book version of Germans to America (GTA), finding that--listed in the arrivals for October 23, 1854--there was a Vitus Bleisensteiner, quite possibly her ancestor, but again his home village was unreported (the code for "unknown village" being 000).  Some of the passengers listed did have indicators for their places of origin--so was he perhaps from Obermoellrich (O zero, zero) or Oberdorf (zero O, zero) or Oberhof (zero, zero, O)?  Optically identical, these zeros actually are listed under the heading "List of Village Codes."

Thus Nancy confers with the Heritage Society in Lincoln where they recalled a visit of the author of this article, Antonius Holtmann, from some years previous.  Following an email to us at the University of Oldenburg, we immediately checked the original manuscript microfilms from the National Archives, found the name, and photocopied the entry:  Vitus Bleisensteiner, 32 years old, from his hometown of Schmatzhausen.  Not the faintest hint of illegible material that might have excused the book authors; beautifully inscribed, the name appears as Number 10 (National Archives Microfilm Publications, NA, M 237, Roll 147).  At once, using www.mapquest.com, Nancy was able to find Schmatzhausen between Regensburg and Landshut in Lower Bavaria, and, using teleauskunft.de  she located the Catholic parish office of Schmatzhausen.  From the diocesan central archives in Regensburg (archiv@bistum-regensburg.de) she received the exact entry in the Register of Births which was photocopied for her:  Vitus Peissensteiner was born on May 27, 1820 in Schmatzhausen, the son of a shoemaker, Georg Peissensteiner and his wife, Frau Anna, born Eder.  With that linkage, Nancy McKinley had found an entry to her family history in Europe.
 
 

The name Vitus Bleisensteiner (Nr. 10) on the passenger list of the „Audubon“, arrived in  New York, Oct. 23., 1854

This fiction brings to our attention the deficits of the three sources of information:  the book edition Germans to America (1850-1888) is silent about his place of origin and gives no clue whether Vitus Bleisensteiner traveled in a cabin or in steerage.  The CD-ROM edition of Germans to America reports his origin as "Germany" but likewise gives neither cabin nor steerage as the mode of transport.  In addition, the name is incorrectly spelled as Bleisensteiher.  And the German Emigrant Database (DAD) which was assembled for the time span 1850-1891 in cooperation with the team which produced Germans to America, offers neither the name Vitus Bleisensteiner nor the names of any other passengers for this trip of the Audubon, sailing from Bremerhaven to New York.  Quite likely, there is no listing at all in the database for October 23, 1854.  Clearly, the perfectly legibly written names from the original found no place in the electronic memory to which an inquiry could generate any response.

 However, the microfilm of the National Archives with its original lists contains the name, the hometown of Schmatzhausen, the report that he traveled "between-deck," and that he was a peasant.  In this case, the originals of the National Archives remain the only reliable source in the "needle's eye" of the emigration process, namely the journey itself.  Furthermore, it opens up the European history of this family called Bleisensteiner / Pleissensteiner.



Volumes 1-60:  A Return to Reliable Basics

 As to the book version (volumes 1-60), a great deal of criticism has already been launched (see the bibliography listed in brackets at the end of this article) to indicate that it can not be trusted.  In the volumes are missing not only all Austrians (even before 1866) and the Russian Germans, though the Swiss and French remain, even though they are "converted" to Germans.  Berlin has been shifted into Bavaria and many travelers were simply overlooked;  moreover, places of origin were omitted, sometimes individually but often through excision of an entire column on one and the same list.  For example, from August 22 to November 28, 1890, forty-two ships traveling to New York with Germans on board and 11 similar vessels which de facto do arrive in Baltimore are deleted entirely.  Departing from Bremerhaven and anchoring in Baltimore between August 4, 1856 and January 17, 1860 were 79 ships which have not even been considered by the GTA team.  On board the Leipzig on April 7, 1890 about 260 passengers have been “transported” from the German town “Ohio” to the American state Ohio.  And on the Johannes Kepler on October 28, 1865, for example, 219 peoplewere brought  to the German states they just came from: to Prussia and Hanover, to Hessen and Baden.

 In volume 60 everything goes haywire on the Amalfi list:  Germans to America informs readers that the ship arriving in New York on May 22, 1891 from St. Thomas in the Caribbean carried only Swiss citizens as passengers, but that all of them lived previously in the city of Hamburg.  Checking with the Hamburg Historic Emigration Office, we learn that of the passengers who went on board, not a single one came from Switzerland, though for example Christine and Minna Schnitzler did report their domicile as "Bretten" in the German state of Baden (NA, M 237, Roll 568; GTA 60).
Interestingly enough, until the publication of Volume 38, they were letting dead people walk on shore, e. g., 64 of these corpses arrived in new Orleans on December 27, 1853 on board the New England (NA, M 259, Roll 39;  GTA 6).  Then again, the GTA team is likewise skilled at killing off some of the passengers but more about that further on under the heading “Those Who Have Died”.  Not a single one of the lists thus far checked is without a mistake, which is to say, these lists would not be worthy of citation with scholarly reliability in mind.  We had hoped for something better in the volumes that would appear in the years 2000 and forward.



Volume 63 (2000): As Received

 The lists of ships that arrived in New York between June 1 and June 30, 1892 are included in Volume 63, which concludes with December 31, 1892 and coordinates with Microfilms M 237, Rolls 590, 591, 592 from the available originals at the National Archives in Washington D. C.  Seventy-four ships are considered, 32 are deleted, a decision that could hardly be based on the number of German passengers, for their list does provide for the vessel California which arrived from Glasgow, but carried only one German on board.  From among the reported ships, 32 lists give the home village of the passengers, but 30-60% of them have been deleted when the authors employ the designation "unknown village" (ZZZ) in print, a code that is used also when no original home town was listed at all, a procedure to which GTA has been clinging "for life" since 1988.  This "capital sin" of data usage--the application of the same code for different sets of data--is steadfastly maintained in spite of the editors' knowing that those who pick up the volume are looking in particular for the home village of their ancestor.

 Let me point up the case of the steamship Bohemia traveling from Hamburg to New York with arrival on June 10, 1892 (NA, M 237, Roll 590;  GTA 63).  On board in total were 1,122 passengers, only 257 of whom are acknowledged as Germans by GTA.  From among them, the Swiss get counted, but the Austrians, the Russian Germans and many Jews from Russia and Poland are excluded.  Even as 17 Polish passengers are made into Prussians, cities like Suwalk and Riga are turned into Prussian municipalities.  Another 83 Poles are turned into Bavarians while Wilna, Kowno, Bialystok and Minsk are all rendered as Bavarian metropolises.

 It is exceptional enough to discover that the list contains people of Polish citizenship at all, considering the partition of Poland (1795) by Russia, Prussia, and Austria.  Did Polish nationality awareness possibly assert itself to the GTA "scholars?"   Likewise it would be comprehensible if the GTA team had allocated the polish passengers with reference to their respective hometowns in Prussia, Russia and Austria according to the historic partition of Poland but there is no such rhyme nor reason to it at all.  The Prussian and the Bavarian Poles come from Russia's claim to Polish territory while 318 Poles are excluded entirely in the GTA volume.  The fact is they remain Poles just as much as those who were included from Suwalk, Kowno and Bialystok.  The GTA team could as well have shot dice to determine their place of origin on these published lists.  Of 257 Germans on the list, 194 lose their home towns, as do 100 of their "specially chosen" Poles, even though all of them have a home town in the originals--among those mentioned Siedenbollentin, Weimar, Altmühl, Neu Strelitz, Belzig, Breitenbach, Bremervörde and Schneidmühle.  Halberstadt gets special treatment when this town is deleted for passengers Robert Müller and Heinrich Sachs as an "unknown place in Prussia" while Wilhelm Siebert gets to keep his with the codification ACDX.

 Let us next consider the steamship Ems sailing from Bremen via Southampton to New York, with arrival on June 20, 1892 (NA, M 273, Roll 591; GTA 63).  Of the 759 passengers on board, 237 of them are categorized by GTA as Germans.  All are entered on the originals in perfectly clear Latin script with their respective hometowns.   From among these, GTA accepts 85 Germans.  For example: Julius Rauschenbach from Penig and Max Berling from Markgrafpieske, Eusebius Zimmermann from Wolterdingen and Anna Margowska from Prussian Stargard, as well as Theresia Voss from Starnberg and Carl Dutschke from Groß Schönau.

 Likewise, we turn to the steamer Hermann arriving in New York from Bremen on June 29, 1892 (NA, M 237, Roll 592;  GTA 63).  Here GTA ranks 183 of the passengers as Germans, including 39 of the 121 Russians traveling on board.  However, they are all turned into citizens of the city of Bremen, while the remaining passengers--many Russian Germans among them (e. g. with family names of Hinke, Schulze, Bauer, Weigelt, Langenbacher, Herzfeld, Wander, Knoll)--are not entered into the GTA edition at all.  Those 39 who were chosen for inclusion are rendered as newly adopted citizens of Bremen, bearing names like Kroller, Schissmann, Neumann, Behling, Schweinitz, Thiel, Rubinstein and Liebe.

 As if to expiate for their sins, the GTA people excise Johanna Aschwege from Rastede and 66 additional Germans from the list, while they delete the hometowns for 93 other Germans.  And to boot, the hometown of Bohmte is treated variously, John Hellmann (Nr. 299) carries it as his last place of residence but the GTA experts then let it disappear as an unknown village while Martin Stück (Nr. 303) four lines further down is permitted to retain his home town of Bohmte (Code AAH).  Other strange entries include one where the individual gives his intended destination as New York but then travels to an "unknown place."  Which of the researchers told editor, Ira A. Glazier, we might ask, that nobody wanted to remain in New York?

 Equally astonishing incidents happen to other passengers and ships in Volume 63.  The Nevada (June 2, 1892) is "allowed" to pick up passengers in Marseilles and Naples when in fact it picked up passengers on June 2, 1892 in Liverpool and Queenstown (NA, M 237, Roll 590; GTA 63).  And the departure harbors for the Werra on November 1, 1892 are by no means "unknown;" likewise, the Fulda on November 17, 1892 along with the Kaiser Wilhelm II departing on April 4, 1893, as well as once again the Werra on July 31, 1892:  Genoa and Gibraltar appear in the original documents--which is why the passenger manifests exhibit many Italian names (NA, M 237; Roll 599, 605, 615; GTA 63/64).  "Ghost" ships in this time period include the Russia (October 31, 1892), the Suevia (November 7, 1892), the Dania (November 18, 1892), the Raethia (November 18, 1892), the Scandia (December 5, 1892), again the Russia (December 12, 1892), as well as the Bohemia (December 13, 1892).  In every instance on the Glazier list the passengers disembark in "nowhere land!"  But with Cuxhaven as their port of embarkation for each of these ships, as noted for every single passenger on board, the GTA team finds itself clueless (NA, M 237, Roll 599, 600; GTA 63).

 On board the Elbe June 8, 1892, the GTA "scholars" have 69 arrivals coming from the "German" city of New York and traveling to the American city of Philadelphia (NA, M 237, Roll 590; GTA 63).  On board the Friesland (June 21, 1892) in transit from Antwerp to New York, all the passengers are given nationalities of either Antwerpers or New Yorkers when they arrive in New York (NA, M 327, Roll 591; GTA 63) and on the La Champagne (August 25, 1892), 119 Germans, French and Swiss depart from their German hometowns of San Francisco and Ohio in order to make their journey to the United States (NA, M 237, Roll 595; GTA 63).  Furthermore, a major portion of the travelers on La Gascogne (November 28, 1892) en route from Le Havre to New York take on the burden of sailing across the entire Atlantic in order to trek from New York to New York (NA, M 237, Roll 600; GTA 63).  The Westenland reached New York on November 30, 1892 and in the minds of those who give credence to the GTA team, the 706 Germans on board arrived here from their hometown USA (NA, M 237, Roll 600; GTA 63).  And the situation was hardly any different for the passengers on board the Friesland (December 13, 1892).  In this instance, 430 Germans, Swiss and French at least did not lose their hometowns--for the lists do not mention any at all (NA, M 237, Roll 600; GTA 63).  The München sailing from Bremen to New York on August 16, 1892 carried passengers who went on shore in Baltimore!  The original specifies that this was an exception from the usual in that a few emigrants would go forward to Baltimore.  However, the GTA team allows for no meaning to the word "exception," but rather re-categorizes the Baltimore passengers according to their nationality, Prussians with Prussia, Bavarians with Bavaria, and as a matter of fact dumps them off already in New York (NA, M 237, Roll 595; GTA 63).

 Many of the passengers on the Lahn (June 30, 1892) lose their hometowns but Frida Langefeldt suffers a great deal more than that (NA, M 237, Roll 592; GTA 63), in spite of a list which exhibits very clear handwriting.  Wilhelm Gläser becomes Wilhelm Slaser, Hermann Gläser turns into Hermann Glaser, Adeline Henken loses her hometown of Uthlede near Brake east of the Weser River.  Carl Osterloh cashiers his home village of Neuenwege on the Jadebusen, Heinrich Saathoff has one "f" taken from him as well as his hometown of Grossefehl in East Friesland.  Johann Huntenberg is compelled to disembark as Johann Hanterberg and is no longer allowed to claim his hometown of Eisenach, even as his career is degraded from barkeeper to a simple worker.  Moreover, because he wanted to go to New York, he is given "unknown destination" as his domicile in the United States.  As far as the GTA team is concerned, the town of Oggersheim remains unknown in Germany, even in the year 2000.  Thus in GTA, Peter Fieselbrandt remains without a residence, and is, no less, transformed into Peter “Fuselbrandt” (which means "a brandy of poor quality").  Agnes Müller from Ronneburg (Hessen or Thüringen) disappears from the list entirely.  Frida Langefeldt from Kassel, finally, a three-year old, is renamed Longefeldt and is not permitted to arrive from Kassel at all.  And besides, she is forced into being shipped "alone" on board the Lahn.  Katherine Langefeldt at the age of 28, possibly her mother or aunt, in any case an American, has no roll to play at all on the GTA lists.  The GTA team's decision to limit itself exclusively to the inclusion of Germans in this instance leads straight to the absurd.  Nor does it seem to bother the researchers in Philadelphia that they are sending genealogists on wild goose chases.



Vol. 64 (2000):  As Received

From Germans to America Volume 64 (2000), the following individual Germans were deleted from those vessels arriving in New York harbor between June 15 and June 24, 1893.
 
Manitoba  from London, June 15th 12 Germans
Waesland  from Antwerp, June 15th
98
Germans
Solingen  from LeHavre,  June 17th
Germans
Adreatic  from Liverpool, June 17th 
6
Germans
La Touraine  from LeHavre, June 17th
82
Germans
Anchoria  from Glasgow, June 17th 
11
Germans
Sumuri  from Havana, June 19th
1
German
Russia from Hamburg, June 19th
150
Germans
Chester from Southampton, June 20th
9
Germans 
Arizaba  from Havana, June 20th
1
German 
Phila from Curacao, June 21th
6
Germans
Teutonic from Liverpool, June 21th
6
Germans
Apollo  from Antwerp, June 22th
6
Germans 
Island from Copenhagen, June 23rd
2
Germans
Dania  from Hamburg/LeHavre, June 24th
118
Germans
Campania  from Liverpool, June 24th
2
Germans
City of Rome  from Glasgow,June 24th
6
Germans

From June 15th to June 24th, 1893 seventeen ships that were carrying a total of 519 Germans sailed into New York, but are missing entirely from the GTA publication.

The miserable bookkeeping which the GTA offers in Volume 63 with data stretching from July 1 to December 31, 1892 finds no letup.  It plays the same game with those who would lend credence to GTA, which can be further exhibited between the dates of June 15 and June 24, 1893 (NA, M 237, Roll 612; GTA 64).  In these ten days, according to the microfilm of the National Archives, 36 ships arrived with German passengers on board.  By mentioning only 17 ships with a total of just 519 Germans, the GTA team excises 16% of the German passengers, among them those on the Waesland from Antwerp with 98 on board, the La Touraine from Le Havre with 82, the Russia from Hamburg with 150 and the Dania from Hamburg and Le Havre with 118 Germans.  Organ builder Eugen von Kleist with his wife and four children on board the Manitoba disappear for all those who rely on the GTA edition, as do Wilhelm Albrecht from Berlin (Russia), Stefan Grattinger from Deggendorf and Auguste Gliesmann with her 11-year old son John. from Elmshorn (Dania.)
 
 

In the Germans to America Volume 64 (2000), all the passengers on board the following vessels that arrived in New York between the 15th and the 24th of June, 1893 lose their place of origin.

Normannia  from Hamburg/Cuxhaven/Southampton (not from Bremen), June 16th
Gellert  from Hamburg, June 17th
Taormania  from Hamburg,  June 17th
Belgenland  from Antwerp, June 19th
Fürst Bismarck  from Hamburg/Southampton, June 23rd (about half)
Steinhoft  from Hamburg, June 23rd

It is true that the Bremen lists do not offer any information about place of origin, but the Hamburg lists indeed do.  Even so, the rubrics from Hamburg with the exception of those for the Bismarck are never considered.  Nor do the GTA "scholars" pay any attention to the Hamburg harbor registrations, which give complete and thorough information about place of origin (http://www.heo-online.de).

 On five of the ships in question, all 841 of the German passengers lose their hometowns, for example, on the Normannia, losing their places of origin are the man listed as a farmer, Louis Heitmüller from Göttingen, and the baker, Paul Gerhardt from Berlin, both traveling via Hamburg, Cuxhaven and Southampton as possible embarkation harbors, even though GTA makes this ship sail only from Bremen and Southampton.  Cuxhaven disappears entirely.  For another example, the miner Adam Birsch from Gelsenkirchen, the domestic servant Marie Müller from Bautzen, and the blacksmith Daniel Zill from Kaiserslautern, all disappear from the passenger list of the Belgenland.



A Triple Package-- Germans to America 1850-1888 as a Book Edition (GTA), on Two CDs (CD) and in the German Emigrant Data Bank (DAD)

Oldenb Bk Johanna

 We have selected this list because the original is very clearly written and because it encompasses only 49 passengers, all of whom have their hometown.  Seventeen of the travelers are left off the list because their data, with the exception of their first names, age, gender and profession, are in each instance identical to those of other family members (NA, M 237, Roll 155;  GTA 9).  According to the original document, all the passengers traveled in cabin class.  Not one of the three versions of Germans to America makes any mention of this fact.  Except for that, the book edition gives the data for eleven persons exactly as in the original, while the CD and the DAD each reports for one person (In the table below the variations from the original are represented in redtype.).  For the sake of the passengers under consideration, a relationship results as follows:   for GTA--32:16;  for the CD 32:1;  for the DAD 32:1.  This excerpt says nothing about the general variable quality of the three sources of information. It signals only the shadow of suspicion that hangs over all three publication formats.

"Oldenb Bk Johanna" Travelling from Bremen to New York, with Arrival August 7, 1855.


Names Age Sex Occupation The country to which
they severally belong
The country in which
they intend to 
become inhabitants
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Carl Elsner
Carl Elsner
Carl Elsner
Carl Elsner
34
34
34
34
male
male
male
männl.
veterenary
veterenarian
(missing)
unknown

surgeon
surgeon
surgeon
Brakel 
Brackel 
Brackel 
Brackel 
Prussia
Prussia
in Prussia
Preußen
Philadelphia 
(missing) 
(missing) 
(missing) 
Pennsylv.
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Minna Ise
Minna Isa
Minna Isa
Minna Isa
22
22
22
22
female
female
female
weibl.
servant
servant
servant
Diener

-girl
(missing)
(missing)
Arolsen
Arolsen
Arolsen
Arolsen
Prussia
Prussia
in Prussia
Preußen
New York
New York
New York
New York
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Joseph Seidl
Joseph Seidl
Joseph Seidl
Joseph Seidl
25
25
25
25
male
male
male
männl.
tinman
tinman
Tnmi???
Zinngiesser
  Eger
Eger
(missing)
unknown
Austria
Austria
Auooe???
unknown
Chicago 
(missing) 
(missing) 
(missing) 
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Heinrich Bauer
Heinrich Bauer
Heinrich Bauer
Heinrich Bauer
30
30
30
30
male
male
male
männl.
dier
dyer
dyer
Färber
  Redwitz 
unknown 
(missing) 
unknown 
Bavaria
Bavaria
Bavaria
Bayern
Philadelphia
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Pennsylv.
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Friederike Landau
Friederike Landau
Friederike Landau
Friederike Landau
28
28
28
28
female
female
female
weibl.
servant
servant
synt???
unknown
-girl
(missing)
(missing)
Elberfeld
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
Cincinnati
Cincinnati
Cincinnati
Cincinnati
Ohio
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Caroline Schirnding
Caroline Schirnding
Caroline Schirnoing
Caroline Schirnoing
29
29
29
29
female
female
female
weibl.
servant
servant
servant
Diener
-girl
(missing)
(missing)
Elberfeld
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
Cinicinnati
Cinicinnati
Cinicinnati
Cinicinnati
Ohio
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Helene Kayser
Helene Kayser
Helene Kayser
Helene Kayser
20
20
20
20
female
female
female
weibl.
servant
servant
servant
Diener
-girl
(missing)
(missing)
Carlshaven
Carlshafen
(missing)
unknown
Hessia
Hesse
Hesse
Hessen
Kenton
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Ohio
Ohio
Ohio
Ohio
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Xaver Dullinger
Xaver Dullinger
Xaver Dullinger
Xaver Dullinger
25
25
25
25
male
male
male
männl.
farmer
farmer
farmer
Bauer
  Ering
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Bavaria
Bavaria
Bavaria
Bayern
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Helene Kayser
Helene Kayser
Helene Kayser
Helene Kayser
58
58
58
58
female
female
female
weibl.
widow
widow
widow
Witwe
  Carlshaven
Carlshafen
(missing)
unknown
Hessia
Hesse
Hesse
Hessen
Kenton
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Ohio
Ohio
Ohio
Ohio
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Friedrich Naucke
Friedrich Naucke
Friedrich Naucke
Friedrich Naucke
21
21
21
21
male
male
male
männl.
skinner
skinner
relative
unknown
  Torgau
Torgau
Torgau
Torgau
Prussia
Prussia
in Prussia
Preußen
Montreal
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Canada
Canada
Canada
Canada
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Joseph Richter
Joseph Richter
Joseph Richter
Joseph Richter
47
47
47
47
male
male
male
männl.
joiner
joiner
joiner
Tischler
  Bruck
Bruck
Auob???
unknown
Austria
Austria
(missing)
unknown
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
(missing)
Wisconsin
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Hermann Anton Lange
Hermann Anton Lange
Hermann Anton Lange
Hermann Anton Lange
34
34
34
34
male
male
male
männl.
physician
physician
physician
Arzt
  Volkmarsen
Volkmarsen
Volkmarsen
Volkmarsen
Hessia
Hesse
in Hesse
Hessen
St. Vincenz
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Pennsylv.
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Joseph Ardmann
Joseph Ardmann
Joseph Ardmiann
JosephArdmiann
29
29
29
29
male
male
male
männl.
saddler
saddler
saddler
Sattler
  Filsbieburg
unknown
(missing)
(missing)
Bavaria [Vilsbiburg]
Bavaria
Bavaria
Bayern
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Barbara Sommersberger
Barbara Sommersterger
Barbara Sommersterger
Barbara Sommersterger
27
27
27
27
female
female
female
weibl.
servant
servant
servant
Diener
-girl
(missing)
(missing)
Filsbieburg
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Bavaria [Vilsbiburg]
Bavaria
Bavaria
Bayern
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
  
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Johann Jacob Wölfle
Johann Jacob Woelffe
not found
not found
42
42
male
male
joiner
joiner
  Oesingen
unknown
Baden
Baden
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Joh. Friedr. Brand
Joh. Friedr. Brand
Joh. Friedr. Brand
Joh. Friedr. Brand
29
29
29
29
male
male
male
männl.
cigar-maker
cigar-maker
organ-maker
Orgelbauer
  Bremen
Bremen
Bremen
Bremen
  New York
New York
New York
New York
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Joseph Junk
Joseph Junk
Joseph Junk
Joseph Junk
21
21
21
21
male
male
male
männl.
locksmith
locksmith
locksmith
Schlosser
  Schönberg
Schoenberg
(missing)
unknown
Nassau
Waldeck Hesse Nassau
Waldeck Hesse Nassau
Waldeck
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Albert Lange
Albert Lange
Albert Lange
Albert Lange
32
32
32
32
male
male
male
männl.
teacher
teacher
teacher
Lehrer
  Königsberg
Koenigsberg
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
New York
New York
New York
New York
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Robert Reuther
Robert Reuther
Robert Reuther
Robert Reuther
22
22
22
22
male
male
male
männl.
farmer
farmer
farmer
Bauer
  Goerzig
Goerzig
(missing)
unknown
Saxony
Saxony
Silib???
unknown
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Louis Reuther
Louis Reuther
Louis Reuther
Louis Reuther
20
20
20
20
male
male
male
männl.
farmer
farmer
farmer
farmer
  Goerzig
Goerzig
(missing)
unknown
Saxony
Saxony
Srtb???
unknown
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Friedrich Rothmann
Friedrich Rothmann
Friedrich Rothmann
Friedrich Rothmann
40
40
40
40
male
male
male
männl.
shoemaker
shoemaker
shoemaker
Schuhmacher
  Magdeburg
Magdeburg
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Louis Quinius
Louis Quinius
Louis Quinius
Louis Quinius
30
30
30
30
male
male
male
männl.
painter
painter
painter
Anstreicher / Maler
  Calbe
Calbe
Calbe
Calbe
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
August Peiiaeus
August Peiiaeus
August Peiiaeus
August Peiiaeus
30
30
30
30
male
male
male
männl.
physician
physician
physician
Arzt
  Paderborn
Paderborn
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
New York
New York
New York
New York
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Hermann Bachmann
Hermann Bachmann
Hermann Bachmann
Hermann Bachmann
25
25
25
25
male
male
male
männl.
farmer
farmer
farmer
Bauer
  Paderborn
Paderborn
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
Pittsburg
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Pennsylvan.
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Leopold Duve
Leopold Duve
Leopold Duve
Leopold Duve
31
31
31
31
male
male
male
männl.
merchant
merchant
merchant
Kaufmann
  Pittsburg
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Pennsylv.
USA
United States
Vereinigte Staaten
Pittsburg
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Pennsylvan.
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Gottlieb Felbrich
Gottlieb Felbrich
Gotlhlib Felbrich
Gothlhlib Felbrich
40
40
40
40
male
male
male
männl.
merchant
merchant
merchant
Kaufmann
  Amsterdam
Amsterdam
HI???
unknown
Holland
Holland
(missing)
unknown
New York
New York
New York
New York
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Robert Michaelis
Robert Michaelis
Robert Michaelis
Robert Michaelis
25
25
25
25
male
male
male
männl.
merchant
merchant
merchant
Kaufmann
  Gera
Gera
Y???
unknown
Saxony
Saxony
(missing)
unknown
Philadelphia
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Pennsylv.
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Theodor Schindewolf
Theodor Schindewolf
Theodor Schindewolf
Theodor Schindewolf
15
15
15
15
male
male
male
männl.
merchant
merchant
merchant
Kaufmann
  Helmershausen
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Hessia
Hesse
Hesse
Hessen
Kenton
(missing)
(missing)
(missing)
Ohio
Ohio
Ohio
Ohio
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Gottfried Rudert
Gottfried Rudert
Gottfried Rudert
Gottfried Rudert
33
33
33
33
male
male
male
männl.
farmer
farmer
farmer
Bauer
  Posthengrün
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Saxony
Saxony
Saxony
Sachsen
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
Wisconsin
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Heinrich Büsing
Heinrich Buesing
Heinrich Buesing
Heinrich Buesing
43
43
43
43
male
male
male
männl.
carpenter
carpenter
carpenter
Zimmermann
  Ditzum
Ditzum
Hd.???
unknown
Hanover
Hanover
(missing)
unknown
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
 
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Theodor Tellow
Theodor Tellow
Theodor Tellow
Theodor Tellow
44
44
44
44
male
male
male
männl.
merchant
merchant
merchant
unknown
  Perleburg
unknown
(missing)
unknown
Prussia
Prussia
Prussia
Preußen
St. Louis
(missing)
(missing)
unknown
Missouri
Missouri
(missing)
(missing)
Orig.
GTA
CD
DAD
Heinrich Lankenau
Heirich Lankenau
Heirich Lankenau
Heirich Lankenau
17
17
17
17
male
male
male
männl.
farmer
farmer
farmer
Bauer
  Oldenburg
Oldenburg
Oldenburg
unknown
 
 
 
Oldenburg
Milwaukee
Milwaukee
Milwaukee
Milwaukee
 


Lost Hometowns

As far as the Johanna (1855) is concerned, the CD and the DAD have failed miserably.  But there are more corrections when it comes, for example, to the passenger lists for the Marianne, which arrived from Bremen on April 26, 1854 (NA, M 255, Roll 10; GTA 10).  In the book edition, 82 of the 191 passengers lose their hometowns.  Catharina Brack (Catharina's correct name was "Brock" as we have well determined from her overseas trunk which is noted in Antonius Holtmann, ed., "Für Gans America Gehe ich nich Wieder Bei die Solldaten . . . "  Briefe des Ochtruper Auswanderers Theodor Heinrich Brandes aus dem amerikanischen Bürgerkrieg 1862/63 (Bremen: Edition Temmen, 1999), p. 38) from Warendorf (not far from Münster in Westfalia) is one of them.  On the original list the hometown is reported as "Varendorf" and in the CD version as "Varondorf," while the correct "place of last residence" turns up again in the DAD.  But there are problems with the port of arrival.  The CD reports none at all. "Cabin" (CD), possibly first or second class (DAD), is how she supposedly sailed.  But anyone who would take a look at her oversea's trunk (which has been preserved at the home of descendants in Oldenburg, Indiana), would simply shake his head at this designation.  There is nothing at all on the original list which would indicate that Catharina Brack was so privileged as to travel in such an expensive class.  Any passenger bearing entry 122 on the list was highly likely to have been relegated to the steerage section of the ship.  "Cabin passengers" is written above entry Number One and then, obviously somewhere, probably between Numbers 10 and 30, the agency office forgot to enter the words "steerage" or perhaps "between deck.”

A genuine lack of logic or certifiable follow-through on the part of the editors is demonstrable.  CD and DAD would have done well either to refrain from any entry at all or to make note of the exact problem, which they confronted.  Instead, they blindly follow forward with their negligence, in the process making the Marianne, built in 1841, into a luxury liner.  (Peter Michael Pawlik, Von der Weser in die Welt.  Die Geschichte der Segelschiffe von Weser und Lesum und ihrer Bauwerften 1770-1893 (Hamburg: Kabel, 1993), p. 203).  Of course, here they do give back to the passengers their "robbed" hometowns.  For example, Heinrich Nau Schröck near Marburg, Catherine Bonacker  Stertzhausen (not Stentzhausen) near Marburg, Margarethe Wenz and  Andreas Krafft (not Kzaffs) Marburg (not Charburg).  But then again they reconfirm the GTA reading mistakes by hiding Andreas Krafft in the depths of the DAD, from which the entry at the terminal in Bremerhaven rescues him, however, now with the name "Kzaffs;" but this mangling of his name is only the beginning.  The countless mistakes and the intolerable lack of knowledge concerning name structure in the German language exhibited by the GTA team totally  degrades the genealogical troika of GTA, CD and in particular the DAD. Using the DAD requires us to know and to account for the mistakes of the GTA team.

Passengers headed for New Orleans from Bremen also lose their hometowns en route (May 25, 1851) (NA, M 259, Roll 34;  GTA 2).  In GTA, 171 of the 183 travelers are deprived of their hometowns.  The CD gives them their hometowns back.  For example, the Brüning family (not Bruning) Övelgönne (not Overgonne), the Schäfer family Niederaula (not Niederanla), and Johann Gerlach Gronau in Prussia (not Hanover).  But these attempts at a reconstruction are of no significance for the CD users.   Missing completely are the name of the ship, the arrival date, as well as the port of arrival.   At least the book edition points us to the original on microfilm (but there is no index for the year 1851 pertaining to New Orleans).  The DAD, however, supplies this with complete hometowns.

Both CD and DAD changed the GTA version of the passenger list for the Moravia (from Hamburg to New York arriving on November 14, 1884) and made it agree with the original (NA, M 237, Roll 481;  GTA 50).  Heinrich Wöstenberg has to sacrifice his hometown of Uelitz and be content with Mecklenburg the state, while Elise Francke keeps Wesel, which now again correctly is in the state of Prussia.  In GTA they assigned the town of Baden [a state / duchy].  Sophia Vogt keeps her city of Rostock in the book edition, but now is once again permitted to appear correctly in Mecklenburg rather than incorrectly in Prussia.  On the other hand, Berlin for Wilhelm Seering from Mecklenburg (GTA) once again returns home to Prussia (CD / DAD).  Gottfried Heimedinger's hometown of Vaihingen loses its stain of being on the Baltic Sea instead of Baden.  What was already lost in the book remains lost.  For example, Wredenhagen for Marie Stolzenburg, Holthof for Marie Schultz, Neckartheilfingen for Karl Hall (not Hau!), Oberoihingen for Frederike Asbacher, Insterburg for Carl Grabowsky and Großsachsenheim for Ernst and Caroline Schopf.  But these two persons get their hometowns back again in the DAD, as does Carl Grabowsky, though now Insterburg (in East Prussia) turns into Insterbura.

Maddening is the only word for the disappearance and re-appearance of hometowns because there is no logic to it at all.  The passenger list for the vessel Johannes (Bremen to Baltimore May 3, 1855) undergoes scattered alterations (NA, M 255, Roll 11;  GTA 9).  On the original, all 239 passengers have their hometowns, though of course quite a few lose them already in the book edition.  Hermann Haake from Berlin retains his city in GTA as well as in the CD, but in the DAD there is no trace of it;  the same holds for Nicolaus Trokenbrod (Trockenbrod) from Arnstadt, to whom the CD adds the designation "Sab" even though the GTA contains the correct information.  Johann Holdmann originates from Capelle and wants to go to Illinois.  But the GTA deprives him of his hometown and then sends him to Wheeling, to the city which Regina Traut of Blankenau intended to reach, and who is on the list right above him.  The CD and DAD are in agreement:  Capelle is designated as an unknown place but in the case of Wheeling it remains the destination.  Descendants of these people are sent on a wild goose chase.  But it gets even better.  Working 27-year-old man, Heinrich Niemeyer, comes from Diepenau and wants to go to Pittsburg(h).  It is reported the same as on the original in all three-- GTA, CD, and DAD.  But then in  the CD the port of their arrival, Baltimore, is missing.

Hardly any different in treatment is the passenger list for the Main sailing from Bremen to New York with arrival on May 31, 1869 (NA, M 237, Roll 311; GTA 22).  Felix Eickhoff is registered in GTA but without Holtenau, likewise in the CD and once more in the DAD.  But matters are even worse for Heye-H. Schaa with her family of five individuals coming from Westerrauderfehn (Westerhauderfehn is the correct spelling) and Wilhelm Haverkamp from Sandbergen (Sandberg?).  Some place or other they are dumped ashore:  CD and DAD do not know either their hometowns or their citizenship. Jakob Keller at least gets left with his hometown of Zürich, which however is transferred to Germany, so that there is the appearance of correctness achieved by the CD and DAD people when they define his hometown as an unknown town in Germany.  But then where they do go on shore, the CD leaves no clue whatsoever.

There are also other issues irrespective of the missing arrival harbors on the CD and in the DAD, as pertains to the vessel Main from Bremerhaven to New York arriving on November 29, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 482; GTA 50).  For example the Data Bank at Bremerhaven gives back the hometowns for Johanna Grübel and Katharina Hopf--namely, Waltendorf and Schmölz;  in GTA both had lost it while in the CD version Johanna Grübel also loses it;  and in the case of the baker, Johann Reichel from Heidelberg, to whom the GTA had assigned Saxony, is allowed to feel at home once again on the CD and the DAD in his home land of Baden.

So too the passenger list for the Rhein is "reconstructed" in the DAD for those traveling from Bremen to New York with arrival on October 31, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 481; GTA 50).  Heinrich Wollstein and Mary Dudenhoeffer are permitted once again to have departed from Hofgeismar and Rülzheim; Caroline Dokarsky and Jacob Schramm may depart from Freiwalde and Dittweiler; and Anna Scheele has permission to exit, to be sure not yet from Bokel her hometown, but at any rate from Rotel.  In GTA these towns are categorized as unknown and on the CD as unnamed.  Gustav Seidel and Louise Peck do succeed on the CD disk to get back their village of Neudörfchen.

Reconstruction of the hometowns which the GTA so flagrantly, so frequently and so unsystematically dismiss--regardless of the reasons--does succeed to a degree on the CD and in the DAD--sometimes in both mediums of storage, but even then not with reliability.  And this is significant.  Mistakes which the GTA team made in their organization of the data when compared to the original lists, unfortunately are reproduced by the CD and the DAD, practically without exception.  And they are indeed multiple.



The Rhein and the Maasdam (1884)

The National Archives offers a cover page for the passenger list of the Rhein on which is written:  “Note:  Includes crew and passenger list of the SS Maasdam which burned at sea on October 24, 1884."  Passengers on the latter are on a special list, as are those from the crew for the Maasdam.   On this matter, the GTA book edition is totally silent for the vessel going from Bremen to New York on October 31, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 481;  GTA 50).  There is no way to decipher that the passengers on the Maasdam extend all the way from Brünings to Schwab and that the list of the crew members runs from Captain H. C. van Dike (GTA, CD, DAD all reporting him as "Vandelee") to Heizer H. Hegler.  Furthermore, the Rhein is fused with the Maasdam so that the ship is now called the Rhein & Maasdam--and arrives from Bremen.  The dramatic events on the high seas?  Well, we are led to believe they never took place!

Moreover, the CD and the DAD assume this new ship's name but refrain from any mention of an arrival harbor;  they never bother to mention the conflagration and the rescue operation at sea, while they cause everybody to board ship in Bremen (intending Bremerhaven) and classify the entire crew from the Netherlands into passengers--in unison with the book edition.  They are also ignorant about the fact that A. Scheffer and A. Prikker according to the original are not "firemen" but in fact engineers;  and they have even more "facts" to report:  the crew from the Netherlands have it "up to here" with Christian sea travel and thus want to "remain" in the U. S.-- from Captain to firemen.  In addition, on the CD, the ship gets a new nickname:  “Rehin & Masdam.”



Misscalculations and Misscategorizations

As far as the hometowns are concerned, all three data bases have their problems.  For the most part, the mistakes in examining the originals are carried through all of them.  Such ill-chosen classifications prevail for the list of the New York moving from Bremerhaven to New York with arrival on October 28, 1863 (NA, M 237, Roll 235; GTA 15).  Mary Mernick as well as Harriet and Mary Warren derive from Springfield, whereas Mr. Bilzenstein comes from Milwaukee.  The latter is removed from the list in each data base (GTA, CD, DAD) because he is an American while the three ladies remain with their new "German" hometowns.  Amos (not Otmas) Gilbert of New Haven arrives from some unknown town in Germany according to GTA, but from a known town in Germany according to CD and DAD.  Although we know that the artists with the names Morelli, Castri and Lorini arrive from London, in the book version they are to have arrived from an unknown town in Germany while on the CD they come from "Lundov in Germany" and in the DAD they are assigned to both "Lundov" and to "Deutschland."  Hermann Pipmeier from "Riste" (correct version is Rieste) endures a special treatment.  The book edition has him traveling in steerage from an unknown town in Germany and traveling into the unknown even though the original gives the country he would like to reach as the U. S.  The CD and DAD do grant him this much but then do not allow him to come from Riste but instead have him travel in cabin class to Riste.

 Miscalculated are the classifications for the passenger list of the Werra sailing from Bremen to New York with arrival on September 20, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 480; GTA 50).  Pawel Czllakis entered on the original with Hersfeld as his hometown.  Following are the results:  In the book edition he is joined by 508 passengers;  they all come from Hersfeld, located somewhere in Prussia, as allocated by the GTA team.  The CD fails to offer any port of departure, and the DAD splits this mass exodus into various versions of Hersfeld, sometimes given as Hershfeld (DAD):  They keep the states of origin from the original which now all get their own Hersfeld (sometimes Hershfeld):  Baden (Emma Wisehaier, not Weishaier),  Bavaria, (Mary Pinster, not Puister),  Hessen (Auguste Krieger), Oldenburg (Elisabeth Kail)  Prussia (Juliane Wehner, not Wehuer),  Saxony (Johann Jeremias, not Yeteremias), Thüringen (Wilhelm Schmidt, not Szhmidt), Württemberg (Caroline Fabian, not Fabiou).   Likewise, the nation of Switzerland gets its town of Her(s)hfeld in the listing for Eduard (not Edward) Kaiser, while the city of Frankfurt acquires Hershfeld as a new suburb.

 False assumptions occur likewise in the allocation of people on the list of the Jacob A. Stamler traveling from Le Havre to New York with arrival on March 31, 1866 (NA, M 237, Roll 262; GTA 17).  The original microfilm assigns all 347 passengers into farmers, makes the intermittent stop in France into the "Last Legal Residence" for all passengers, and the U. S. A. into the "Country Claiming Allegiance."  The column that should have reported the citizenship was furnished incorrectly at Le Havre with the travelers' destination.  In Philadelphia the GTA team recognized this flaw but in the case of the Germans making the journey, they degraded France into a German town.  They do even worse to the 16 Frenchmen on board:  Names starting with Celestine Dechamp and Salome Sacher all the way to Virgile Gaudfroy get turned into Bavarians.  On the GTA's list, there are no female passengers.  Furthermore, many women are turned into men and in the case of both men and women, their gender is "unknown."  Alois and Johanne Veininger who, according to the team, come from the German community of France, cannot be classified either male or female.  However the married couple with the name Grafs, although 36 and 33 years old respectively, are designated as "small children" coming from the German town of France, but are registered both as males.  When the rubric "Sex" is missing in the original, the GTA team is incapable of coming to the conclusion to leave it blank, rather they proceed under the motto, "Better senselessly complete than sensibly blank."

 But even these deficiencies are not sufficient to "satisfy" the CD people.  Adding insult to injury, they remove the ship's name, the port of its arrival, and the day, year and month of the passengers' entrance on shore.  However, the "Countries of Birth" are now turned into "nation" of origin, in each case with the hometown of "France" added on.  Even John Descher from France, "a town in Austria," is mixed in with the Germans on the CD, in spite of the rule that they leave out people from such countries.  But one correction is made:  the designation of "Sex" is removed.  Three travelers are entered as having "America" as their "last legal residence" on the original.  But in GTA the name of Carl Frey is stricken, Johann Spieß is categorized with an "unknown town in France, and Michel Lustig gets registered to a community of "France," which is in Germany.  The CD and the DAD permit Lustig to come from "France in Baden," Johann Spieß to return to the original as coming from France.  Carl Frey, however, getting Baden as the "country of his birth," now has it back but then gets as his last legal residence "France in United States" (CD) respectively "France” and “United States" (DAD).

 Totally helpless is how the GTA team reacts to the birth of a child, who on the original is ascribed to the 19-year-old Catherine Repp.  In the book edition the child appears on the list as anonymous immediately after its "male" mother and coming from an unknown village in Hessen, while the mother comes from "France" in Germany.  The original reports the mother's "Country of Birth" as Hessen.  Is it not thinkable that when the team got to the 321st registered person on the list, that they were feeding the computer a huge pile of nonsense?  Why do all the Germans lose their homeland of Baden, Württemberg, Bavaria, Hessen or Prussia?  Why did the team feed in the designation "France in Germany," but then fail to follow suit for the child born at sea?  After all, they do give it a nationality [which, however, they now delete from the mother] and are not able to give the child the mother's name.  Their eyes should have popped wide open!  The CD and the DAD are not deterred in letting Catherine Repp go as "male" but they do give her back her home state of Hessen.  But in turn, these latter take away her child.

 Back to Alois and Johanne Veininger and Friedrich and Suzana Grafs.  The CD and the DAD copy Baden and Bavaria from the original, but they invent a Badense and a Bavarian "France."  Suzana Grafs is now designated as a 33 year-old male small child coming from France in Bavaria, and furthermore, as a child sailing on a nameless ship which has no captain, no port of arrival (CD), and no arrival date, but coming from Le Havre in steerage on a passage for the "Purpose for Travel: Staying in the USA."
 

CD ROM 355: Passenger Lists Germans to America 1850 – 1874. 
On the CD Suzana Grafs, who according to the original list is 33 years old, is described as 'male infant' from 'France in Bavaria'. In contrast to the original passenger list the CD list gives neither the captain's name, nor the ship's name, nor the port or date of arrival. 
In the original passenger list there is no indication of the 'Purpose for Travel' whereas on the CD the entry in this section reads: "Staying in the USA”.

The DAD gives her back the name of the ship, its captain and the date of arrival but even adds a comment which is not on the original, “Staying in the USA."

 Similar stupidities occur with reference to the list for the Habsburg en route from Bremen to New York with arrival on October 27, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 481; GTA 50).  For the German steerage passengers between No. 22 and 699, the book edition reports their origin as a village of Wisconsin in Prussia, but on the CD and in the DAD, e. g. Carl Gotterbarm who in reality comes from Haslach in Baden reportedly comes from Wisconsin in Baden, whereas Johann Rauch (from Kronack) comes from Wisconsin in Bavaria.  Johanne Büsing from Brake now comes from Wisconsin in Oldenburg; but Jacob Baner from Ludwigsburg arrives from Wisconsin in Württemberg.  Furthermore, August Zülsdorf from Warzin (Varzin) in Prussian Rear Pommerania--a man who seems to have been working on Bismarck's large estate there--here being No. 22, has caused this muddle: he wanted to go to Wisconsin.

 Imbecility is the word for the mistakes on the passenger list of the Kronprinz Friedrich Wilhelm sailing from Bremen to New York with arrival on May 1, 1882 (NA, M 237, Roll 450; GTA 42).  In the book edition of the GTA, 319 passengers are erroneously reported to be arriving from New York while 85 incorrectly are arriving from Berlin.  Both New York and Berlin are inserted in the book for the correct German states of origin.  And all those who come from the Prussian province of Posen are erased.  The CD as well as the DAD deny the existence of German travelers from Posen, e. g. Wilhelm Eggert with the seven members of his family and the five persons in the Seeloff family.  However, the book editors do not deny the German state of origin for the remaining Germans, with the result that now in the case of Pauline Leonberger, New York ends up in Württemberg whereas for Emil Stelzer New York is in Saxony;  for Elise Ritzmann, Berlin is located in Hessen but for Tobias Hagenbucher, Berlin is in Bavaria.  But then in the CD nobody has a port of arrival.

 Imbecility is also the word for the mistakes on the passenger list of the Johann Kepler arriving from Bremen to New York on October 28, 1865 (NA, M 237, Roll 258;  GTA 16).  GTA takes 211 of the 283 passengers who were on the original, a cleanly written page for "Last Residence" and for "Country Claiming Allegiance," understood in the book not as an indicator of nationality for the individual traveler but as his destination.  Consequently Heinrich Straub, a 36-year old blacksmith, is entered on the original list with Baden as his country of birth and with Wasseralfingen as his hometown, Baden being his "Country Claiming Allegiance."  This family of ten the GTA team designates as departing from an unknown town in Baden but having a destination of Baden.  The father's profession is "unknown."  The CD and the DAD do permit Heinrich Straub once again to become a blacksmith.  But this family now comes from "Waneralpingen" somewhere in Baden and is traveling to Baden in order to stay there in the USA.  His port of arrival on the CD is deleted.  In the original, 28 year-old Sibille Helmling is registered with her country of birth as Hessia, her most recent domicile as Westhofen and with Hessia also as the Country Claiming Allegiance.  However, the book edition relinquishes her domicile, substitutes her country of birth, Hessen, with "Germany" and forgets her destination which was by way of Bremen to New York.  The CD and the DAD are not content with this categorization. Thus, they reinstate Westhofen in Hessen, but now want us to believe that Sibille Helmling intends to reach Hessen as her destination.  The CD is equally ridiculous imparting as "Purpose for Travel"  having Sibille "Returning to her Country of Origin."  The DAD is even more inventive, by reporting "Return;" which flies in the face of the microfilm which has no entry at all under the rubric "destination."  Just how does the CD and the DAD know that the Straub family remains in the USA but that Sibille Helmling wanted to return to Hessen?  If we take a man born in Prussia, had as his last domicile before departure in New York, and is already an American citizen (in this case Anton Kette, 28), we are left to wonder when all three, the GTA, CD and the DAD, permit him to travel to the USA and remain there, even if they allocate to him the status of departing his last domicile of New York in Prussia, and in addition, mutate him from a carpet weaver to a carpenter.

 Imbecility is just as much the word for the mistakes on the passenger list of the Emilie from Bremen to New York, arriving on September 16, 1865 (NA M 237, Roll 256;  GTA 16).  In the book edition, 118 of the 212 passengers lose their hometowns, four U. S. citizens are permitted to travel to the USA but 45 people dissolve into the unknown.  Traveling via New York, 163 individuals return to the German states, whose nationality they retain.  Once again, the Philadelphia team misinterprets the rubric "Country Claiming Allegiance" as their destination.  Antonie Stötzel on the original is registered to Oelsnitz under the column "Country of Birth" and has Oelsnitz under the "Last Legal Residence" with Saxonia entered in the column under "Country Claiming Allegiance" (citizenship).  The original gives no destination.  However, the book edition gives her origin as unknown and has her traveling into the unknown, but then transfers the "unknown" hometown of Oelsnitz from Saxony to Prussia.  The CD and the DAD likewise stick to the book, except that they report the last legal residence with his correct name Oelsnitz.   Both of the latter declare Saxonia to be her final destination.  Moreover, these two data bases know more than the original microfilms supply.  The CD make the fantasy that her purpose of travel was "returning to the country of origin.”  Might we ask: returning to Saxony in Germany or Saxony in the U. S.?   However, a written annotation states "Return to US" in the DAD, which indicates clearly that they mean in the English version to say:  return to Saxonia in the U. S.  Adding to the confusion, the German version of the DAD refers to this immigration with the same notation.  But this is total nonsense.  In the microfilmed original it is clear that Antonie Stoetzel from Oelsnitz, a town in Saxony, is migrating to the U. S.  But in the German version of the DAD she is not permitted to do so:  she must either return (as a German woman?) to Saxony in Germany or (as an American?) she must come home from Saxony to a totally unknown Saxony in the United States.
 

This printout of a 'Certificate' which includes the results of a November 2000 search in the German Emigration Database (DAD) on the passenger Antonie Stoetzel from Oelsnitz/Saxony gives the following details: The passenger's destination is 'Saxonia' and the entry under 'Purpose for Travel' reads 'Return to the US'. In contrast to this, in the original passenger lists 'Saxonia' is given as the 'Place of Origin', and the original does not say anything about a “Purpose for Travel”. But the CD also has a “Purpose for Travel”  -  similar  to the one in the DAD list: ”Returning to Country of Origin”, i. e. Saxony.
Those managing the DAD lists should not sell such 'findings' in the form of “Certificates” and charge DM 5 (€ 2.50) for providing this information, and least of all they should not 'grade up' the information by including the indication "Source: National Archives".

 Still on the Emilie, Marie Elise Grabbe, born in Schwagsdorf (Schwagstorf), which was her last domicile in Germany, is a citizen of Hannover--according to the original microfilm.  But GTA knows better!  They have her coming from an unknown town in Oldenburg and traveling to Hannover via Bremen and New York.  The CD and the DAD see it the same way.  Schwagstorf is correctly restated but it remains in Oldenburg and Hannover is still the destination, although the name of the port of arrival has been forgotten by the CD.  On her husband, Johann Hermann Grabbe, they play even worse tricks.  He, likewise, was a Hannoverian from Schwagsdorf (torf), born in Stuckenbrock.  But in the book edition, his hometown turns into an unknown village in an unknown country and as his destination he acquires Hannover.  With this destination, the CD is satisfied but slips into deep thought with regard to the last residence:  “Schwagstorf in U.???” The DAD need not ponder:  His last "steady" domicile is Schwagstorf and his latest country of citizenship is unknown.  Likewise, the “annotation for arrival” is “unknown”, because of course it never existed on the original.  According to the original,  F. Akermann has his birthplace of Entliburg (Entlebuch) with her most recent domicile in Basel and Swiss nationality.  However, the GTA has her traveling to Switzerland from an unknown town in an unknown country.  The CD leaves these errors stand but stumbles in regard to the last residence, showing "Basel, U???" as the last residence for “Fr.??? Akermann.”  Her purpose for travel is missing.  In the DAD, they report “unknown” in the feigned "annotation," and “unknown” for the country claiming her allegiance.  Basel is known as the most recent domicile but the destination for this round trip is “Switzerland.”

 Equally disturbing is the imbecility as it pertains to the passenger list of the Habsburg from Bremen to New York, arriving on March 28, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 474; GTA 48).  Here the pattern is parallel to that for the Emilie.  And, as was the case in Volume 16 which appeared in 1991, here too in Volume 48 (appeared in 1995) there is basic misunderstanding.  The data for current citizenship (Country Claiming Allegiance) apparently was re-coined by the GTA team into citizenship of expectation.  Thus, e. g. the 16 year-old Bernhard Haverkamp reported the Grand Duchy of Oldenburg as his Country of Birth, as his recent domicile, likewise as the country which demanded his allegiance but then also Oldenburg as his destination.  Apparently no one on the book team stumbled on the notion that they have all 900 German passengers traveling exactly to the spot where their journey began.  The CD intensifies this impression:  Bernhard Haverkamp's last residence is now no longer unknown but is the Grand Duchy of Oldenburg.  Anton Maus by the same token travels en route from his last residence of Prussia to his final destination of Prussia;  Amalia Rudolph is coming from Germany and going to Germany.  The CD  makes no effort to report a harbor for arrival.  This is logical of course, because they have found the annotation that everybody is "returning."  The DAD sticks with these beaten paths:  Going back to Oldenburg, Prussia and Oldenburg, Germany.  Thus all three versions of Germans to America are uniform in their mistakes:  Franz Rossi is entered in the original form with Sachsen/Sachsen/Sachsen.  But the Book edition, the CD and the DAD are in synchronization that he comes from Prussia and wants to travel to Sachsen.

Overlooked Passengers, Hometowns and Ships
 Inaccessible data make the situation bad enough but even worse are the missing data.
  For example, the overlooked passengers on the ship list for the Westphalia sailing from Hamburg to New York arriving on November 22, 1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 482;  GTA 50).  Carl Berg from Duwitz (Dußvitz) in Prussia loses his hometown in the book edition, but gets it back in the CD and in the DAD, but his wife Johanne remains abandoned from the book , the CD and from Bremerhaven's data bank.  The 65-year-old Katharina Schmidt from Hamburg loses her 4-year-old foster child, Katharina Wolf.  Georg Graulich, likewise, from Lauterbach in Hessen and Mathilde Lewinsohn from Schieselbein in Prussia (Schippenbeil, East Prussia?) can be found only on the original.  All hometowns are overlooked for the list of passengers on the Ems sailing from Bremen to New York with arrival on November 10, 1884 (NA, M237, Roll 481; GTA 50).  On the original all 338 of the 532 passengers concerned have hometowns, but all lose them in the book edition, probably also all of them on the CD and in the DAD.  In any case, these databases do allow Lina Voss from Schwerin, Friedricke Fricke from Goslar, Wilhelm Foltermann from Lemförde, Gottlieb Schulz from Heiligenfelde and Mimi Westendorf from Vegesack arrive from "unknown places" in Germany.  Heinrich Helmke from Großenmoor could not be found in the DAD.  The CD is ignorant of the port of arrival.

 And it is no different for the passengers on the list for the Werra going from Bremen via Southampton to New York arriving on November 21, 1885 (NA, M 237, Roll 491; GTA 52).  From all 163 passengers included, they excised the hometowns, quite probably the case also in the CD and the DAD.  Peter Meister from Grünthal reported only with Bavaria, Maria Noll from Giessen reported only with Hessen, and Carl Siring from Rudolstadt reported only with Thüringia at least are permitted to arrive.  The CD no longer knows the port of arrival.  Inexcusable are the overlooked ships.  The book edition of the GTA (Germans to America) includes in Volumes 9-13 (from August 4, 1856 to January 17, 1860) not a single list of ships that arrive in Baltimore.  Coming from Bremen / Bremerhaven alone, there were 79.  That means about 10,000 passengers in this data base are not even included (NA, M 255, Rolls 11 and 12).  All these lists are called "City Lists" for urban Baltimore.  The GTA team obviously overlooked them (intentionally?) because they were interested only in "Federal Lists" and therefore wanted to exclude "City Passenger Lists" (1833-1866).  The National Archives loaned them from the City of Baltimore so that they would be incorporated into the microfilm set and interjected them into the gaps for their own "Federal Lists."  Often these city lists include the hometowns of passengers.  (Cf. Michael Tepper, American Passenger Arrival Records.  A Guide to the Records of Immigrants Arriving at American Ports by Sail and Steam.  Baltimore:  Genealogical Publishing, 1988, 76 ff.  Footnote 4.)

  Depositing a scent that put us on the trail of these deficits was Jakob Damschen.  The last time there was a hint of him was in 1857 from the town of Minden on the Weser River.  With his wife Anna and five children, he was reportedly on his way to Bremen and from there intended to head across the Atlantic to America.  In the book edition and in the New York lists there is nothing although there is a Baltimore roll of film indicating that on May 23, 1857 he arrived with his family on board the Duisburg (NA, M 255, Roll 11;  GTA 11).  The CD and the DAD fail to recognize these seven people.  Likewise they have no knowledge of their fellow travelers--Gottfried L. Schade, Ludwig Stallmann, Johannes Horn and the seven members of the family of Franz Jokisch.  The CD and DAD seemingly know none of the people traveling on this list.

 And then there is the case of Fritz Thiele, a tailor, and his wife Elisabeth from Peine who do appear on the original listing for the Admiral sailing from Bremen to Baltimore with arrival on August 17, 1858 (NA M 255, Roll 12;  GTA 12) but not in Germans to America.  Nor do the CD and DAD bother to mention him.  For that matter, neither do they mention the domestic servant Johanna Hilpert from Bayreuth, nor the shoe maker Carl Humberg from the city of Oldendorf.  Not one out of the 105 passengers on board with German nationality seemingly was permitted to appear in the CD or the DAD.

 On May 15, 1859 the Gustav laid anchor at Baltimore (NA, M 255, Roll 12;  GTA 12).  In the book edition there is no mention at all of this journey.  Likewise the CD and the DAD fail to mention the tailor Nicolaus Schubert from Kupferberg, ignore the farmer Clemens Middendorf from Dinklage and also the hired farm hand Heinrich Fortmann from Lohne.  Both data bases probably fail to mention a single one of the 113 German passengers on board.  Ten days later on May 25, 1859, the Schiller arrived at Baltimore harbor from Bremen with 118 passengers (NA, M 255, Roll 12;  GTA 12).  Once again the book edition misses the boat, and once again the CD and DAD behave in the negative by ignoring Marie Uphus from Schapen in Hannover, Johann Heinrich Santel from Lohne in Hannover, and Friedrich Heckert from Quakenbrück in Hannover. In all likelihood the rest of the 115 are missing too.  Quite likely all 79 lists running from 1856-1860 are missing from the book edition and from the CD and the DAD as well.

 But there were earlier mistakes as well.  The 428 passengers on the Minerva from Bremen with arrival at Baltimore on November 18, 1854 (NA, M 255, Roll 10;  GTA 8) are missing entirely from the book edition and quite likely from the two electronic data bases as well.  Names like Carolina Stiefel, Lenore Klotz, Charlotte Ebighausen, Anna Weigmüller and Georg Stange do not turn up on the computer screen.  And the story is no better for the passengers on board the Goethe moving from Bremen to Baltimore with arrival on September 27, 1852 (NA, M 255, Roll 9; GTA 4).  In the book edition there is no trace of this trip whatsoever, while the CD and the DAD likewise make no mention of August Ludwig and Charlotte Schreiber from Quakenbrück nor of Heinrich Rusche and Christine Bockelmann, nor supposedly of a single one of the 201 passengers on board.  Let's remind ourselves, the list for the Goethe is not a "City Passenger List."
Even the passenger lists of the ships with arrival at Galveston (NA, M575, Roll3) are missing entirely from the book edition, the CD and the DAD: 39 vessels between 1850 and 1871 with about 7000 passengers, for example Edward Haerter  (Neptun, June13, 1850), and Anna Weichmann from Oldenburg together with her 5 chidren (Anton Guenther, November 4, 1866).

 But the same fate happens for New York which used no such designation as the "city passenger list."  Between the dates of May 19 and May 30 1855, in the book edition there are 13 ships which are missing entirely with the result that the names of their passengers quite likely are not incorporated into the CD or the DAD either (NA, M 237, Roll 152;  GTA 9). Not listed for example are the names Carl H. Mahlmann, Wilhelm Henning and Henriette Rosenbaum from the Emigrant arriving from Bremen in New York on May 19, 1855).  Nor do we find Catherine Adam, Georg Schachtner and Barbara Petzenhauser coming in on the Metropolis from Le Havre arriving in New York on May 21, 1855, nor Julius Wenzel and Anna Scheel on the Humboldt coming from Hamburg to New York on May 21, 1855, nor again Louise Roth, Barbara Anstett and Marie Amann arriving on board the Mary Bradford from Le Havre to New York on May 22, 1855.  Missing too are Peter Sattler, Adelaide Stadler and Frederic Traub on the Victoria Reed arriving from Le Havre to New York on May 23, 1855.  Missing as well are Jacob Brand, Philipp Ebling and Adam Schautz on the M. Arcury reaching New York from Le Havre on May 23, 1855.  Likewise missing are Heinrich Hellfach, Franz Behr and Caroline Küter coming from Bremen on the Ohio and reaching New York on May 25, 1855.  Equally neglected are Edmund Jungbluth, Emilie Loeber and Friedrich Schwemm on the Johann Hermann from Hamburg arriving in New York on May 28, 1855 and H. J. Brehmer, Ad. Eichmeier and Fr. Cabel (Oder, Hamburg – New York, May 29, 1855).  Missing from the Nelson reaching Bremen from New York on May 28, 1855 are Caroline Dieckmann, Elisabeth Toben and Friedrich Albrecht while Claus Collmann, J. H. Rademacher and Hermann Mahnken are not included as passengers on the Republic reaching New York from Bremen on May 29, 1855.  Missing too are Ferdinand Richter, Emil Hirsch and Kunigunde Kaufmann from the Suwa reaching New York from Hamburg on May 29, 1855 as are Heinrich Buchholz and Rosina Kinkel from the Union coming to New York on May 30, 1855 from Bremen.

  Earlier, coming from Hamburg and arriving in New York on November 29, 1851, the Bark Rhein disappeared.  Both the ship itself as well as its immigrant freight disappear in the book as well as on the CD and in the DAD, in any case losing Leonore Neurath, Leopold Quade, Eduard Maybaum and Marie Landsberg (NA, M 237, Roll 108;  GTA 2).  No less was there manipulation of the Columbia list when it arrived at New York on July 13, 1850 from Bremen (NA, M 237, Roll 90;  GTA 1).  It is missing in the book edition and on the CD and in the DAD, e. g. the family of Marmet from Ostbevern, H. W. Grolle from Bonn, J. Michel from Aschenbach, D. Culmann from the county seat of Cloppenburg and V. Taake from Rinteln.  Apparently the entire list was deleted.  Zimmermann/Wolfert acknowledge the Marmel family (Zimmermann/ Wolfert:  German Immigrants. Lists of Passengers Bound from Bremen to New York.  Vol. I: 1847-1854.  Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1987) as does the CD-Rom "Passenger Lists New York 1820-1850" now as "Marme" and without the hometown as included in the original documents. [CD 273: Passenger Lists New York 1820-1850, available e. g. from Family Tree Maker's Family Archives.  (See also Werner Schubert, "Edwin Marmett, Last survivor of the Marmett Family of Ostbevern" in Eugen Kotte, ed., Ostbevern in Amerika.  Ostbevener Heimatbläter (1991), 3, 93-97.)

 Nor do they spare New Orleans from this historical Bermuda triangle of immigration.  Arriving at New Orleans on November 8, 1854 from Bremen , the O. Thyen disappears from the book.  Also stricken from the list in the CD/DAD are the following names:  Friedrich, Anna and Friederike Dahlköter, Heinrich, Caroline, Wilhelmine, Caroline and Wilhelm Schrader, Heinrich, Anna and Friederike Echterhoff.  And fate is no less kind to the Eberhard arriving in New York from Bremen on May 14, 1855 (NA, M 259, Roll 42; GTA 9), with the editors ignoring among others the names of Amalie Stallmann from Eschenstruth, Barbara Popp from Porschnitz and Carl Witte from Reninghausen.

 Other outcomes were possible.  Two incidents are worthy of mention.  Even though Vitus Bleisensteiner was lost along with the Audubon in the DAD (see the introductory chapter), ships like the Rhein arriving from Bremen in New York on May 12, 1877 (NA, M 237, Roll 408;  GTA 33) and the Australia which reached New York on July 7,  1884 (NA, M 237, Roll 478; GTA 50), though lost in the book edition do reappear in the electronic editions even though the CD denies us knowledge of the port of embarkation.  Jettchen Kaufmann and Emil Aschendorff therefore are with us once again although Jettchen's descendants will regret terribly that she is logged on the CD as an "uncle."

Those Who Have Died
 The volumes 1-38 of Germans to America (January, 1850-May, 1881) contain no information about the incidence of death, for indeed some who actualy did die at sea arrive safe and sound in the U. S.!!!  Genealogists and migration historians are thrown off base, cast into false byways and senseless searches.  To ignore those who have died is indeed itself a case of unscrupulous misinformation.

Spot-checks test reliability.
For instance, the Bessel arrived in Baltimore on June 7, 1853.  Wilhelm Rosenhauer, Heinrich Buscher and Elisabeth Suck happen to have died at sea as documented in the original list for the ship moving from Bremen to Baltimore (NA, M 255, Roll 9; GTA 5).  The book edition and the CD contain not the slightest clue; however the DAD indeed does.  But does this make it more reliable in all matters?  When the Bremen sea craft Oldenburg reached New Orleans on December 10, 1853 (NA, M 259, Roll 39;  GTA 6), five passengers had died at sea.  The GTA and the CD make no reference to any deaths.  For the most part, the DAD sticks to the original, namely, accurately registering Chrostoph Junghaus [actually Junghans], Heinrich Meier, Wilhelmine Ossenkopp and Wilhelmine Renne as having died, but then they neglect to mention that on the original Heinrich Mornholz also passed away.  The CD keeps its silence about their port of disembarkation.
 Even though Captain Fr. Volckmann on December 27, 1853 in New Orleans swore that during his journey 16 passengers had died on board the Helene coming to New Orleans from Bremen (NA, M 259, roll 39; GTA 6), the book edition and the CD know nothing about it.  Nor is the DAD any more accurate.  It allows Fr. Wielking [actually Wiebking], Friedereicke Nettelmann, Marie Zurmühlen and Marie Pohlmann to survive, no matter that the captain announced that they had died at sea.  On the very same day December 27, 1853, the New England arrived from Bremen at New Orleans, (NA, M 259, Roll 39; GTA 6), for which the original contains the "List of Passengers that died on the Passage" undersigned by Captain Orr, including 63 names.  In the book edition they are not distinguished from the listing of 380 people who survived this journey of the damned, for it has the 63 dead people go on land in New Orleans, the CD lets them go into some no man's land.  However, the latter tells us that Margaretha Lising, the number one person on the dead man's list, has died, but does not include Georg, Heinrich and Henrich Budden, nor does it mention Theresia Holter and Adelheid Feld: in fact, nobody.  Adding to the confusion, the CD has the passengers embarking not in Bremen/Bremerhaven, but instead in Amsterdam.  However, the DAD sticks with Bremerhaven. (August Dreseler and Carl Sieveking report in letters about their journey; cf. Heimatverein Löhne, ed., Let's Go to America!  The Path of Emigrants from Eastern Westphalia to the USA (Löhne: Brackmann, 1986), 39-43.) -- All 63 names of the deceased were checked on the CD and in the DAD.)
 On the other hand, the DAD gets it right for the Leibnitz as far as the port of arrival is concerned, which is New York, with arrival on January 21, 1868 from Hamburg (NA, M 237, Roll 290; GTA 20).  To the officials at the arrival point, Captain Bornholdt had to report the 97 deaths that occurred on board.  Reports about these deaths were also recounted in Germany, for example, in the Mecklenburgischen Volksblatt für Stadt und Land on February 10 and on March 12, 1868.  However neither the book edition nor the CD and DAD resources acknowledge anything about the dead.  Thus we never learn from these data bases that Wilhelmine(14), Alwine(7), and Helmuth(3) Plagemann have lost their brother Julius(11 months), as well as their parents H. F. (44) and Johanne (39) Plagemann and that Wilhelmine Viereck now has to care for her siblings August (10), Ludwigr (9) and Sophie;  C. K.C. ( 50) and Auguste (49) Viereck were among the deceased victims.  Nor do we learn that J. F. Masch (31) is now on his own with his six-months-old step daughter Elisabeth, for Dorothea Masch (25) and her children Anna (3) and her step-son Fritz (11 months) have died.  That a step-child--exactly as stated in the Hamburg registry (Historic Emigration Office, Elizabeth Sroka, Steinstr. 7, 20095 Hamburg, http://www.heo-online.de) also dies as well as the information that the Plagemann family came from Woldegk in Mecklenburg-Strelitz, that the Viereck family was from Grüssow near Malchow in Mecklenburg and that the Masch family came from Barnekow near Wismar is likewise missing.  Not one of the data bases indicates any acquaintance with the Hamburg State Archives data bases (1850-1934), which offer details about the origins of passengers;  only these sources can open up the wealth of information needed to access the the needs for good family history (http://www.hamburg.de/LinkToYourRoots/welcome.htm).

 Beginning with June, 1881 (the GTA volume 39), names of those who died at sea are reported in the books.  But even so, there are still massive errors in the threesome of sources.  In the DAD housed in Bremerhaven's Morgenstern Museum, genealogists have discovered that Ludwig (48) and Christine (37) Braun with their children Ludwig (11), Louise (10), Auguste (7) and Christine (6) all went on board where they died but nevertheless the three databases would have us believe that they "stayed in the USA."  On the Internet (http://www.dausa.de) they read that there are photocopies of the originals available to prove it.  They asked for  the lists of the ship Bremen which arrived on April 10, 1884 in New York.

 Thus the inquiry:  We did find the Bremen in the book edition;  here too we learned that 450 passengers had been entered as having died at sea.  This made us skeptical.  So we looked up the original on the microfilm of the National Archives and there found the correct name of the ship to be the Main (NA, M 237, Roll 474;  GTA 48).  Here we also found the Braun family and learned that only the five-month-old Bernhardt Schewe had died on April 9, 1884 of "Entkraeftung" (weakness).  However, the GTA team patched this notation behind all the people on the list who followed that entry.  The CD and the DAD took no exception to the book producers.  Likewise they copied the incorrect name of the ship,  and quite likely also registered 450 surviving passengers as “dead.”  The book edition, the CD and the DAD know of the six “deaths” in the Braun and Petermann families and in each case eight “deaths” in the Lafin and Grohl families.  They count up the nine “deaths” in the Peitzmeier family and the eleven “deaths” in the Fecht family.  Barbara Pfaffenhenger, Carl Posser and Bernhardt von Seggern for the GTA team have to die.  Descendants of the Braun family once again can be searched.

Curiosities
 These three databases play games on the lists of the New York  (1863) with H. v. (zur) Oeveste from Riste (Rieste) and with Henry Kettler from New York.  In the book edition both are missing, Kettler for good reason if we use the standards set by the GTA team because after all he is an American.   But on the CD and the DAD, v. Oeveste remains incognito; yet, even though Kettler is categorized correctly as "a citizen of the USA" he reappears, though incorrectly, allocated to the expensive cabin class on the ship and not in the much cheaper steerage.  Then again, it would have been plausible to let him resurface if they were letting him travel with H. v. Oeveste because after all henry Kettler (23) did take Oeveste (17) along to America.  Young Oeveste had written to his parents  as follows:  "Kettler from Vörden is now here on a visit."  He stated that he could "travel with him (Keller) since it would be very pleasant if he had a companion who had already been there."  He recommended to his parents that they inquire of Kettler how things were in America. (Antonius Holtmann, ed., Ferner thue ich euch zu wissen . . .Briefe des Johann Heinrich zur Oeveste aus Amerika (1834-1876) (Bremen: Edition Temmen, 1995), 92;   see http://www.uni-oldenburg.de/nausa/zuroev/000.htm).

 Games played by the three databases for the list of the Werra (September, 1884) continue with other family names.  Not only is it a case where they document a mass exodus from the German states with many names such as Hers(h)feld.  But also, hidden behind their Mary Jehurtz, is the real Mary Schulz even though 35 lines ahead of this Schultz there is a Lisette Schulz whose name they have written correctly.  Hidden with Juliane Wehur is the real Juliane Wehner, who disappears entirely in the DAD, and behind Joh. Yeteremias is the real Johann Jeremias, while hiding behind John Blenderumaum is the real John Blendermann.  Those expecting to find the correct name in the DAD would have to know exactly how the team botched it because who would ever hit upon Blenderumaum?  Anyone scrolling down the CD will find Blenderumaum and Wehur quickly but no trace of Yeteremias and Jehurtz.  We can only conclude that anyone wanting reliable information as to what is contained on the actual passenger list will have to consult the original microfilms where the handwriting is relatively simple if one has any feel at all for German family names.

 There is no chance of finding Adolf Bano (2) either in the DAD or on the CD.  With Ignatz (7), Gisela (6), Anna (5), Wilhelm (4) and Alexander (6 months), he belongs to Katherina Bano (30).  In both electronic data bases, his basic data appear on the computer screen only if you are lucky enough to type in "Rmasrmasrmasbano."  In the GTA they make Adolf into Adolp, the same for the CD but then Adolph for the DAD.  Only the book edition gets him correctly with his own family.  However, there the name appears between Wilhelm and Alexander Bano.  Thus, only the original microfilm is dependable.

 It is also tough for the German nobility when their names fall into the hands of the GTA team.  In the Hamburg emigrants Protokoll of 1852 is written the word "Particulier" for Wilhelm von Quitzow of Rostock who left Hamburg on September 15, 1852 on board the Copernicus. (Johann Christian August Heyse, Allgemeines verdeutschendes und erklärendes Fremdwörterbuch. Hannover: Hahnsche Hof-Buchhandlung, 1838:  Particulier, m., French., ein Privatmann, ein einzelner, für sich oder amtlos lebender Mann-private individual without any portfolio.)  He intended to disembark in new Orleans or Galveston.  The original of the passenger list of the Copernicus includes the entry which states that Officer Wilhelm v. Quitzo from Rostock was en route to St. Charles.  In the book edition he is called Wilhelm Vonomitzo, an officer coming from an unknown town in Hesse.  His destination is St. Charles and on November 18 he arrives in New Orleans from Hamburg (NA, M 259, Roll 37; GTA 4).  The CD calls him Vonomitzo as well, acknowledges that he is an "Officer" now from Hesse on the Rhine.  The CD alone reports that he is on board in Marseilles, but again does not know in which harbor he disembarked.  To date I have been unable to discover what happened to him on the DAD in spite of my most imaginative spellings of his name or data about his person.  If I had been successful as I was in the case of his traveling companion Wilhelm von Bolen (DAD says Vonbolen), then Hamburg would again have been his port of departure.  Johann Perschau and his family of six traveled with the Gothia arriving in the U. S. on October 18, 1887.  The book edition and the CD do not know where the ship set sail and where it arrived.  The DAD does not know the ports of departure.  But the "source," which in fact is the microfilms of the National Archives, does indeed know that the ship left Stettin and Hamburg before steaming for New York (NA, M237, Roll 513; GTA 55).

 Allegedly the Industrie arrived in New York on November 25, 1865 from the Orkney Islands according to the DAD, as told to us by a telephone caller.  Gesina Henke from Westrup was found on the list but can she be coming from the Orkney Islands?  Had she perhaps left by way of England on a British ship?  But then why not by  way of London, Southampton or Liverpool?  In the book edition too we read Orkney Islands and in the CD the port of departure is listed as Para.  Could this be Belem on the Amazon Delta in Brazil?  Here too the only solution is turning to the original where the situation becomes perfectly clear: Simply put, the Industrie took on board "all passengers of the ship Julia stranded on her voyage to New York on the Island of Sanday" (NA, M 237, Roll 259;  GTA 17).  Peter Michael Pawlick offers the explanation (Von der Weser in die Welt.  Die Geschichte der Segelschiffe von Weser und Lesum und ihrer Bauwerften 1770-1893  (Hamburg: Kabel 1993), here p. 233 and p. 389.)   In this instance the Julia left Bremerhaven on September 18, 1865 with 295 passengers on board.  On September 26 it got stranded on Sanday Island to which the Industrie hastened to offer assistance.  It had left Bremerhaven on October 10 and reached the shipwrecked passengers whom it took on board before sailing away on October 16 headed for New York where it arrived on November 25.  In the meantime it had also taken on board the crew of the shipwrecked brigantine [a two-masted, square-rigged sailing vessel] Almore.  Once again the GTA team offers only detours and if the subject is shipwrecks, they are skilled only at obscuring the evidence.

 The DAD team threw up its hands for one of their customers.  R. v. Radonitz, they found out, had arrived in New York October 14, 1863 on board the Hansa from Bremen via Southampton.  And the hometown of Ludwigshafer (sic) was supposedly somewhere in Belgium, which of course makes no sense.  The CD confirms that it was Ludwigshafer in Belgium while the book edition offers nothing.  The name is missing perhaps because they took the name to be Belgard instead of Belgium.  Thus again our only resort for help is the original microfilm (NA, M 237, Roll 234;  GTA 15).  And here is the answer:  R. v. Radonitz is entered with a hometown of Belgard all right, whereas the passenger listed ahead of him, namely Francis Hock ( and not Kuch), comes from Ludwigshafen in Germany.  Joseph Segelmann, who does not even belong here according to GTA standards, is no less drastically handled.  The book edition states that he comes from an unknown hometown in an unknown country;  the CD makes no effort to disguise its lack of any clue, reporting these as "Garn in U???"  The DAD gets it a bit more exactly:  His last known domicile is Hungary (Ungarn) though his last native country is "unknown" (which is comprehensible if his domicile is abbreviated as Hungary).  On the original, however, it is written long hand very clearly and quite legibly:  Ungarn, that is, the German word for Hungary.  The CD and the DAD have Louise, Catharina, Marie and James Nickels coming from Germany already in 1863--from Helgoland (We would note, however, that not until 1890 was this island once again German, occupied by England in 1807 and acquired from Denmark by the Kiel Peace of 1814, exchanged in 1890 for Zanzibar in the African Ocean.)  In the book the report is simply an “unknown town in Germany” while the original has Helgoland.

 All the unsystematic deficits stacked up here have spewed a huge amount of chores onto our desks. (In particular, Uta Grüning has been scouring passenger lists in our research data base for German emigrants to the U. S. (www.dausa.de) at the University of Oldenburg.  In the process, some of the inadequacies addressed here were uncovered by her).  We conclude that they are but the tip of the iceberg, one that extends invisible throughout the entire opus.  Only one time did we need to spend several hours to figure out the insufficiencies of the texts.  That was when we wanted to find out what was meant by "Bicycle Ryder" in Volume 1 (GTA) which appears in the "List of Occupations with Codes" and is abbreviated as BCR.  It also appears in Volumes 2 and 5-9, though here as "Bicycle Rider" but still coded BCR (January 1850 - June 1852;  May 1853 - December, 1855).   Then we got lucky checking the original: John Reger, a man who maybe was very technically advanced, held this profession.  On June 3, 1853 he arrived on the Harvest from Bremen disembarking in Baltimore, probably carrying a racing cycle.  The CD just lets him roll onward, never knowing, however, in which port this sportsman could go merrily on his way again.  The DAD knows this bicycle rider too.  So was America's first bicycle rider a German?  In the original, however, John Reger is entered as a "bucher" which most likely should have been written as "butcher" which is coded as BCHR.  An innocent blunder it was not, for the profession "bicycle rider" is coded by the GTA team as "BCR" (NA, M 255, Roll 9;  GTA 5).
 

The “Certificate” on John Reger, printed out at the DAD in 2000, indicated that this “Bicycle Rider” traveled from Bremen to New York on the vessel “Harvest” arriving on June 3, 1853. In 2001 the DAD indicated correctly Baltimore instead of New York. Nevertheless he was described as a "Bicycle Rider" in this 2001 “Certificate” – an obviously false statement since the first few 142 bicycles have been made in France in 1862, called “boneshaker”. (Now, in the 2002 printout, this “occupation” has been canceled in the DAD; John Reger became, what he was: “butcher”. But volume 5 (GTA) and the CD still know the “Bicycle Rider”.

A Correction
Vitus Bleisensteiner who arrived in New York on October 23, 1854 on board the Audubon still has not been taken into the Bremerhaven Data Bank, but John Reger who arrived on the Fuller at Baltimore on June 3, 1853 now gets his chance:  He is no longer listed as a bicycle rider but is allowed once again his profession of butcher.  John Blendermann's inaccessible data is still reportable by the DAD's viewing screen but only if you type in the impossible spelling of "Blenderumaum."

We Strike the Balance
There exists not only the suspicion but an urgent call for cynicism with respect to the unreliability of the 64 volumes of GTA, of both the CD (1850-1888) and of the DAD with its database from 1850-1888.  Both offer no reliable basis for genealogical and historically structured research;  we cannot even trust the mistakes that are made for they are totally arbitrary and unsystematic.  The only trustworthy and quotable information is that which is based on the data stored in the microfilms of the originals from the National Archives.

 The microfilms are available in various venues, e. g. in Washington's National Archives in Fort Wayne, Indiana at the Allan County Public Library, in the Archives of the Mormons in Salt Lake City Utah Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and in the Research Center for German Immigrants in the USA (DAUSA) of the University of Oldenburg (http://www.dausa.de).  At this venue, scholars can carry out their research without cost and have research done at the paid rate of 25 EURO/$ per hour.  Photocopies of the original passenger lists are available at this time in Hamburg  (http://www.heo-online.de) for those who departed from there between 1850-1934, and in Oldenburg for the arrival lists from 1820-1897.

 The data stored in the GTA edition (1850-1893), on the CD (1850-1888) and in the DAD (1850-1891) offer a defective though helpful entry to the information which is available in reliable form only on the originals;  the data bases which have been compiled thus far are unreliable, even though they contain useful indexes, no more, but then no less either.

************

See the reviews of Antonius Holtmann about Volumes 1-60: "Wenn man es wagt und seinem Vaterland entsagt."  Auf Seglern und Dampfschiffen zogen sieben Millionen Deutsche nach Amerika.  Zum Problem "Passagierlisten" (zu Glazier / Filby: Germans to America)“, in Frankfurter Rundschau, 48 (1992), October 10, 1992, p. 16.  Likewise under the title "Germans to America.  Lists of Passengers Arriving at U. S. Ports.  Deutsche nach Amerika -- Fallstricke für Genealogen und Historiker," in Studies in Indiana German Americana, 2 (1995), 88-99.  Furthermore, in English "Snares for the Genealogist and the Historian.  A Critique", in Society for German American Studies Newsletter, 14 (1993), 3, 19-24.  "New Lures to Entrapment for Genealogists and Historians, Vol. 42 of Germans to America: Lists of Passengers Arriving at U. S. Ports, March 1882-May 1882, ed., Glazier / Filby (Wilmington, DE: Scholarly Resources, 1995)”, in Society for German-American Studies Newsletter, 16 (1995), 3, 22 ff.. – “Glazier / Filby: Germans to America, Volumes 1-50 (1988-1996). Fallstricke für Genealogen”,. in: Genealogie, 45 (1997), 9-10: 274-280;  see also the reprint in Oldenburgische Familienkunde, 39 (1997), 4: 620-629.  Also in English, "Germans to America, 50 volumes that are not to be Trusted,” in The Palatine Immigrant,  22 (1997), 2: 80-87, and in Der Blumenbaum, 16 (1999), 4: 176-179.  "Fallstricke und kein Ende,"  Volume 54 of Glazier / Filby, ed, Germans to America (Wilmington, DE: Scholarly Resources, 1996)--Ein Abgesang," in Genealogie, 46 (1997), 3-4: 507-508;  also in English:  "Pitfalls and No End to Them”, in The Palatine Immigrant, 22 (1997), 3: 152 ff., and "Noch einmal: “Germans to America” ist wirklich nicht zu trauen,” in Genealogie, 48 (1999), 1-2: 410-413.  Also in English, "Missing Baltimore Arrivals in Germans to America,” in The Palatine Immigrant, 24 (1998), 1: 21-25, also in Deep South Genealogical Quarterly, 36 (1999), 2: 93-96.


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