Biographies > 21 Emigrants

Christian Barthelmess - Soldier, Musician, Photographer

(detailed biography as PDF file)

Born on April 11, 1854 in Klingenberg am Main. He grew up in modest circumstances and received a sound school education, and was also a very talented musician.

1866/67 emigrated to the USA. The travel expenses were sent from America. He lived in New York at first, then with relatives in Irontown, Ohio.

November 15, 1876 joined the army, occupying several posts until his discharge in 1903. Devoted himself to music and photography, and documented the customs and lifestyle of local Indians while serving on the Western Frontier.

April 12, 1886 Married Catherina Dorothea Hansen-Ahlers, who had left Flensburg for the USA in 1881

1883 his reports on Navaho Indian ceremonies are printed in the German-language newspaper "Der Westen" in Chicago.

1887/88 geographical-topographical Grand Canyon Expedition. His pictures get a sensational reception.

1888 Stationed in Fort Keogh, Montana Territory, where he sets up a photo studio.

1892 probably spent six months in Klingenberg

1898–1900 fought overseas in Cuba, and from 1900–1903 in the Philippines.

April 10, 1906 He is buried under rubble during excavation work at Fort Keogh, and dies at the scene


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