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OCONTO COUNTY
Wisconsin
FAMILIES and BIOGRAPHIES

 .DAMP - TROHOE .

DAMPSON - DAMPF - TROCHA

Researched, written and contributed by descendant:  Barb

THE ROBERT DAMP AND CAROLINE TROHOE (TROCHA) FAMILY

Robert Carl Damp was born in Wied, Kreis Greifswald, Germany on March 21, 1867.  His father was a full-blood Dane whose name was Frederick Karl Dampson.  He was born in 1846 on Rugen Island.  He came to Germany as a boy with his parents and lived in Wied, Kreis Greifswald, Germany.  As they were living in a new country the family decided to drop the 'son' at the end of their name and add an 'f' to make their name sound more like their German neighbors.  So 'Dampson' became Damf or Dampf.  Later the family dropped the 'f' and they signed their name 'Damp'.

 


Rugen Island, now part of Germany

Little is known of Robert’s childhood but he attended school in Greifswald and learned a trade as an apprentice carpenter. 

Caroline was born September 24, 1862 at Schwarzwald Kreis, Aldenau, Posen.  The parents of Caroline Trohoe (sometimes spelled Troha, Trocha, or Trocko) were Karl Trohoe and Kacha Dubelisch.  There were 6 children in the family; Caroline, Christine, Marie, Karl, Suzy (Susie), and another boy who died in Germany.  Caroline’s father Karl was a strict man, quiet in his ways and very religious.  He expected his children to obey when he spoke and to eat their food without talking at the table.  It is not known how much Caroline attended school, but she learned the fundamentals of reading, writing, and arthrimetic.  When she was old enough she went to work for wealthy farmers in Jadeborn near Stettin.  She often told about being sent out into the forest to gather sticks which she made into bundles and carried home on her back.  Her sister Christine worked nearby and sometimes the girls went for wood together.

Robert was nineteen years old when he met and married Caroline Trohoe, who was 23 years old.  Financially they were not able to set up their own home, so went to live with Robert's parents for a time.  She always remembered how kind they were to her.  Ten children were born to this marriage, the three oldest being born at Wied bei Eldena, Greifswald.  The other seven were born in Oconto County where the Damps emigrated.  One child, a girl died named Ella was born in 1905 and died in 1910 in Oconto Falls.

In 1890, Karl Wolf and Christine Trohoe Wolf, his wife and her mother immigrated to Oconto County settling in Stiles.  He quickly found work and sent money for Robert, Caroline and their three children to join them.

In Spring of 1891, Robert, Caroline and the three oldest children who were born in Germany, Bertha, William, and Rob emigrated to Philadelphia aboard the ship ‘Lord Gough’ and then took the train to Stiles, Oconto County, Wisconsin.

 

 

 

Robert quickly found work as a millwright at a sawmill in Stiles.  They moved next door to Karl Wolf, Christine and  Caroline’s mother in Stiles.

After a short time Robert began working as a millwright at the paper mill in Oconto Falls.  Robert built a house in Oconto Falls for the family.  There were five rooms on the first floor - kitchen, dining room, living room, bedroom, and parlor.  The second floor had three bedrooms, separated by a large clothes closet.  There was no bathroom in the house, but a well worn path in the back yard.

Their income was supplemented by a large garden with ample vegetables for the table and for canning to use in the winter months.  Milking the cow was a twice a day chore.  Two pigs were raised every year to be used for meat to be used in the fall and winter.  The older boys liked to hunt.  Berry picking was three miles distant in the woods was a must for all family members during the summer months.  When the house was built a certain portion was left for an orchard including cherry, apple, and plumb trees.  The boys gathered wood for the kitchen stove.  Girls did the cooking.  The living room contained a large coal stove which heated the entire downstairs.

Robert was tender-hearted, affectionate man who loved a little joke.  He was proud of his children and what they became and always talked about them.  The older children remember how he took the boys fishing up to the 'The Divides'.  At Christmas time he would decorate a tree, pile the presents under it, then light the candles and call them in.

He had a gift for growing things and had a fine garden.  But his greatest interest was his flowers which he tended carefully.  Anyone who knew him would remember the windows full of geraniums and the borders of zinnias around his garden.  His children inherited this 'green thumb' from him and all of them seem to be able to make things grow. 

He was a builder and made many things for house and yard with his hands including several boats.  In fact his life might have been prolonged if he had not gone out to his work-shop to finish a boat he had started.  He had had surgery and was not strong, so he contracted pneumonia and died in a few days.

Caroline’s mother died at Stiles and was buried there.  Her father had died in Germany.  Kacha (Catherine) Trohoe never spoke English although she understood what was being said.

Caroline was a good mother, taking care of her children at all times.  When they played games in the evening such as blind-man’s bluff she would sit in a rocker and watch and laugh with them.  She took great pride in her home and had nice things such as lace curtains and an organ in her parlor.  Her best dishes were kept in a fine china closet behind glass doors and brought out for company. 

Although she was not a seamstress, she was rarely with her knitting and all of the children wore long stockings she had knit.  As they grew older they brought their friends home and Sunday night supper usually meant extra places set at the table.  They were free to invite guests and were made to feel welcome at the Damps.

Her church was of great importance in her life and she was regular in attendance as long as her health permitted.  She was an active member of the Luther Ladies aid.  When all the children were old enough they were sent to Confirmation class and all of them were confirmed in German.

Caroline was never the same person after Robert's death.  She mourned him as long as she lived and wept as she rocked in her chair.  Robert and Caroline are buried beside each other in the quiet cemetery at Oconto Falls.

Much of this written history was compiled by Margaret Moffat Damp in 1960 and Charles Damp in 1981.

 


The Robert Damp Family August 27, 1921


Back row: Herman (1903-1953), Otto Damp (1901-1964), Rev. Charles Damp (1899-1994), Fred Damp (1897-1984), Emil Damp (1894-1976), Robert Damp (1891-1973), and William Damp (1888–1964)

Front row: Bertha Damp Morris (1886–1966), father Robert Damp (1867–1947), mother Caroline Trohoe Damp (1862–1950), Emma Damp Arndt Kobes Longsine (1892–1976)

Further information about this family is available on ancestry.com (Damp/Trohoe Family Tree and descendants).  http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/17927050/person/579524796

To contribute additional information, corrections or family stories please contact Barbara O’Donahue (granddaughter of William Damp) at barbodgb@hotmail.com or through the Ancestry.com web site.



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