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Happy birthday to my great-grandfather, Henry Rebmann

My great-grandfather, Henry Rebmann, was born December 7, 1865, in Gundershoffen, Alsace, France, which is not far from Strasbourg. When he was born, his name was Henri Lang. His mother and father married the next year, and he became Henry Rebmann. Shortly after that, Alsace became part of Germany, and the Franco-Prussian War of 1871 began in that very part of Alsace.

I got to visit Alsace in 2013. I saw Niederbronn, where Henry’s father Henri was born, and also Hatten, where his mother, Salome Lang, was born.

image of Hatten, Bas-Rhin, Alsace, France
Village of Hatten, Bas-Rhin, Alsace, France
Dick in Niederbronn
Dick in Niederbronn
image of Dick in Hatten cemetery
Dick in Hatten cemetery by a “Lang” gravestone (possibly a cousin)

Henry emigrated to the US in 1888, and he settled in Buffalo, New York, where he met and married my great-grandmother Anna Kalert. He became a US citizen in 1906.

Henry had four siblings and three of them also emigrated to the United States. His brother Peter lived in Buffalo until his death in 1945. His sister Salomea Rebmann Guenther died in San Francisco in 1956 and is buried in a cemetery in Colma, California. His other sister Carolina (Carrie) Rebmann Berckman died in 1930 in Cincinnati, Ohio at Longview Hospital, an asylum.

Henry worked as a stone cutter and oven builder in the Buffalo area.

Henry  died in 1912 at age 47 from the effects of alcoholism. He left behind a wife and 6 kids, one of whom was my grandmother Louise Rebmann Moseley. I have always thought those must have been tough times for the family!

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