Sunday, May 24, 2015

Amanuensis Monday: Peter STROESSER’s (Harry’s dad’s) death certificate

It had been only three years since the death of their mother, and in 1893 the STROESSER children, Michel, Baltasar, Anna, Harry, Nicolas, and Clara, found themselves truly orphans. Their father, Peter, passed away on 11 June, only four days before his son Baltasar’s eighteenth birthday.

Their neighbor Johann PENSCH, who had also been in attendance on the report of their mother’s death, was kind enough to take care of the detail of reporting the death to the Burgermeister, accompanied by another neighbor, Johann SALENTINY.

This image has been trimmed from the original at FamilySearch.

Transcription (the italicized parts were handwritten on the record):

Im Jahre tausend acht hundert drei und neunzig den zwölften
des Monats Juni um fünf Uhr vor mittags sind vor Uns
Glesener Michel, Burgermeister, Beamten des Civilstandes
der Gemeinde Folscheid, im Kanton Redingen, Großherzog=
thum Luxemburg, erschienen Pensch Johann, Taglöhner,
alt vierzig acht Jahre, Nachber des Verstorbenen
wohnhaft zu Schwiedelbruch,
und Salentiny Johann, alt sechzig zwei Jahre,
Maurer wohnhaft zu Schwiedel=
bruch, Nachber des Verstorbenen.
Diese haben uns erklärt, daß Stroesser Peter,
alt f ünfzig sieben Jahre, Eisenhändler,
geboren zu Ettelbrück, wohnhaft zu Schwiedel=
bruch, Witterer der zu selbigem Schwiedelbruch
verstorbenen Thinnes Barbara
verschieden ist gestern um acht Uhr nach mittags,
zu Schwiedelbruch , im Hause Nr. -- Gasse,
und haben beide Anzeiger gegenwärtige Urkunde, nachdem sie ihnen vorgelesen worden, mit Uns

Line by line Translation:

In the Year one thousand eight hundred ninety-three, the twelfth
of the Month of June at five o’clock before noon before Us
Glesener Michel, Mayor Officials of the Civil State
of the Commune of Folschette, in the Canton Redange, Grand-
duchy of Luxembourg, appeared Pensch Johann, Day laborer,
aged forty eight Years, Neighbor of the Deceased
residing in Schwiedelbrouch,
and Salentiny Johann, aged sixty two Years,
Mason residing in Schwiedel-
brouch, Neighbor of the Deceased..
This has been declared to us, that Stroesser Peter,
aged fifty seven Years, Ironmonger,
born in Ettelbruck, residing in Schwiedel-
brouch, Widower of the selfsame Schwiedelbrouch
deceased Thinnes Barbara
deceased is yesterday at eight o’clock after noon,
in Schwiedelbrouch , in House No. -- Street
and have both Informants the present deed, having been read to them, with Us

It is not known at this time exactly how the children formed their residences upon the death of their father; whether they stayed together or split into separate households, or whether some of them became wards of their extended family. The elder children were old enough that they may have taken care of their younger siblings; Michel was nearly twenty, Baltasar eighteen. They would have needed the aid of an older advocate in legal matters, but for most practical purposes they may have been quite old enough. Even Anna, though probably not old enough to take full responsibility, at sixteen would have been able to do much.

Harry would have required more help at fourteen, as would thirteen-year-old Nicolas and eight-year-old Clara. I am inclined to believe that those youngest three, at least, remained together. In later years the records show that they emigrated to the United States around the same time, and even lived in the same town for a while. It is slim evidence, I admit, but it does seem to indicate a certain amount of closeness between the three. The other STROESSER child who emigrated, Michel (or Michael, as he was known by then), went to Canada, quite far from his siblings.


Folschette, Redange, Luxembourg, death certificate no. 11 (1893), Peter Stroesser; digital image #111 of 125, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, “Tables décennales 1891-1894,” FamilySearch ( : accessed 19 Oct 2014). Note: This image set is actually death records, mismarked as Tables décennales.

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