Ellen's earliest proven SEEBACHER, Paul(us) Theodore, was born 22 Feb 1846, somewhere "near Munich". His wife Theresia PEINTINGER was born 27 November 1844, probably also in Bavaria.

Family legend claims they emigrated in a hurry. In 1877, the story goes, Paul was a groom for someone influential; he was on a road working out his horses when he made the mistake of passing the Kaiser, which was "punishable by death." Paul, of course, was let off, but he packed up his family immediately and came to America! (Genealogists knowledgeable about German societies of the period, of course, scoff at this story. Ah, well, most romantic legends die eventually.) Ellen's aunt was also told that Paul's handwriting on his citizenship petition -- a careful, formal script -- demonstrated a surprising amount of education; this has not been proven or disproven.

Paul and Theresia's son John Aloyisius married Cecelia GIGLER, daughter of Frank GIGLER (born about 1841) and his wife "Grace" (who also appears in census records as "Christance"; her name might have been Kreszentia, or something else entirely). The elder GIGLERs left Straubing, Bavaria, around 1889; Cecelia herself claimed an immigration date of 1891, and is thus Ellen's last-off-the-boat ancestor.

Acting on a tip from the wife (now widow) of Willy Brandt, Brigitte SEEBACHER-BRANDT -- whose ancestry is apparently not Bavarian -- Ellen's father used the IGI to dig up some SEEBACHERs in Austria (the Steiermark, Kaernten, Oberoesterreich, and Salzburg) as far back as 1675; perhaps we'll make a connection back to Austria eventually.

Last update: 19 March 1999