1847 07Submitted By Roy Pfeiffer
Following is the first letter from Germany to Georg Anton
Pfeiffer and his wife Maria Anna Deinhard after
their arrival in America. It is one
of thirteen which were studied by a descendent, Roy Pfeiffer, prior to
researching Pfeiffer and Deinhard ancestors in Germany in 1992.
Other letters of this series are available with study notations included.
The original of these letters are included in a group of
20 items held by Anton at the time of his death and available for study at the
University of Texas Library. They
were placed there December 20, 1931 by a grand daughter, Ruby Pfeiffer Holden.
LAABER JULY 14, 1847
Dear son-in-law and daughter:
I have expected your letter longingly, but as I read the
first letter and learned what happened to you, I was thunderstruck, for one
should combat evil before everything and leave all misfortune to God.
For evidently one has seen the omnipotence and salvation of God.
Just confide in him, and do not forget him. He shall conduct everything for the best.
I have received your dear letter on June
20th and it has found us in the best of health which we wish and hope will be
the case with you. ((This may refer
to this tale: During their journey to America, the ship and its passengers
suffered severely from a storm. Much
of the cargo was tossed overboard in order to keep the damaged vessel afloat.
Also, a child, close to this family, died and was buried at sea.
Although the name and passenger list of this vessel have not been found,
a check of Requests for Permission to Immigrate from Velburg and Neumarkt, name
Johann Pfeiffer age 3, as the only child from the home villages of Anton and
Maria. The earliest written family
story says the trip took 6 months while civil records in Germany indicate the
trip took place after September 1846.))
As news, I will write you that
Michael((Maria Deinhard’s brother)) is no more soldier, but he has not done
better as he has gone to America. At
his request, I put a man in his place while he got ready to go to America.
Then there came a letter and as it arrived, impious …
And also one from Breitenwin which showed that they are not very pleased
with America, and as Michael believed that your letter might be retarded til the
fall, he went to the foreign land
and had not landed when your letter came. And
the two letters from you were received in Laaber and you can readily imagine
what was said. Kerschenmeir Is
still the same old man as he used to be, but does not attract much attention
with his talk, as nobody believes him. Barbara
and Michael((These siblings of Maria arrived in Texas in 1848.
Barbara married Peter Kellermeirer and raised a family with many
remaining in the McDade/Pinoak community until some resettled in west Texas.
Daughters of this family married into the Meuth and Beck families and
remain either in Bastrop County or nearby.
As other letters will indicate, Michael died from Yellow Fever leaving no
descendents)) are firmly determined to come back every five years, although who
comes with them we do not know, as they have bid us goodbye.
I have received the books you ordered
and have delivered them in Nurenberg against receipt. They were addressed to Bastrop, with a notice that if you
were no longer in Bastrop, the German named Schmitt would know where to find
As further news, I can tell you that the
feed corn and the seed corn sells For 40(p), the wine for 48? And the oats for 15?.
We are mowing at this time - a good harvest which God may bless.
When you can write to Simon Deilhard
please greet both him and his wife cordially as well as his mother and sisters.
And when it is possible try to make the best of your life in America for
here it is getting worse every day. And
you should write often as your parents wish.
A special greeting for your brother from
the sister-in-law from Longenfelt.Write me soon on receipt of this letter of
your experiences and where you are, for we think of you daily and
it is our dearest wish that you
forget God and everything will come out
right. ((it is truly surprising
that someone would delay sending the drills, used in planting, until the last
minute knowing the time required by mail was uncertain.))
In conclusion be greeted cordially from
all of us and we remain your friend until death.
Pray for us as we pray for you also.
Sincerely, John and Margaretha Deinhard,