|The name Tiedtböhlen originated
in Sweden in the 17th
century. When King Gustavus Adolphus came south
from Sweden to Pomerania during the Thirty
Year’s War, some of his soldiers were of
this name. After the Swedish king fell in the
battle of 1632, these "böhlens"
remained along the Baltic Sea from Lübeck on the
west to Stettin on the river Oder to the east.
Through the long years this name was shortened to
Tietböhl ancestors were mostly rural people:
farmers, cattlemen, blacksmiths, and the like.
One source indicates that the name
"böhlen" is equivalent to the German
verb abharren meaning to remove hair from or a
In 1720 part of
Pomerania was added to Prussia by King Frederick
William I, father of Frederick the Great. In 1815
all of Pomerania became part of Prussia when the
old Swedish territory was annexed. By the mid
1800’s the agricultural lands were taken by
princes, dukes, and other nobility leaving the
farmers in poverty and servitude. Falling grain
prices through cheap imports by steamship from
America caused unrest among the farmers. Failing
farms forced rural populations into the cities
where children were reared under unspeakable
living conditions. King William I was also
building his army by conscription, notably for
the Franco- Prussian War of 1870-1871 and after.
Word spread in Germany about peaceful living and
good jobs to be had for the asking in America.
Joachim Tietböhl was
born May 13, 1815. He married Wilhelmina
Wischmann born 1820, died in Demmin, Pommern
(Prussia) about 1872. According to family
tradition, Wilhelmina was of the nobility her
father being a Prussian Cavalry officer. She was
reserved for a person of higher rank. When she
married Joachim, they were disowned because he
was a farmer of common blood.
Of the union of Joachim
and Wilhelmina came seven children all born in
Kreis Demmin: Charles, Frederica, William, Lena,
Frederick, Amelia, and August.
With the immigration of
family members came documentation to verify their
names and history. A photocopy of the ship’s
passenger manifest shows that Joachim and the two
youngest children Amelia and August traveled
together to this country. These three departed
the free port of Hamburg on September 25, 1881.
They sailed on the S.S. Silesia with Ship’s
Master A. Albers, Captain. This ship docked at
the Port of New York on October 10, 1881. The
full passenger complement was 926, all in
steerage. Steerage being basically equivalent to
a floating cattle car with a single fare about
$10. The Tietböhls were all listed as
"farmers from Prussia."
SILESIA--the first of two steamships of this name
owned by the Hamburg-America Line--was built by
Caird & Co, Greenock (ship #150), and
launched on 14 April 1869. 3,142 tons; straight
bow, 1 funnel, 2 masts; iron construction, screw
propulsion (single-expansion engines), service
speed 12 knots; accommodation for 90 passengers
in 1st class, 120 in 2nd class, and 520 in
steerage; crew of 120. Captain: A. Albers.
Voyages in 1881: 8 round trips Hamburg to New
York, all steerage passengers. After numerous
owners she was renamed MONTEVIDEO and on 2
December 1899, wrecked off Lobos Island, on the
River de la Plata in South America.
through Castle Gardens the three immigrants
settled in Williamsport, PA. For many years there
was a steady stream of German settlers into
Pennsylvania. Settlements got started between the
Susquehanna and Delaware Rivers around fast-
growing Philadelphia. As time passed, the
newcomers moved west and north. Pennsylvania was
the "promised land" due to liberal
terms for land purchase, religious tolerance,
existing German settlements, a countryside that
looked a lot like Germany and a favorable
August (1864-1941) was
nearly 17 years old when he arrived from Germany.
The 1900 census identifies him as Augustus W.
from Pomerania. He and Sophie Völschow
(1870-1934) were married and living in
Williamsport PA. He was an insurance salesman.
Five children were living at home: William,
Frederick J. Sr., Augustus, Charles, and Ralph.
Irene and Leroy were yet to come.
Joachim remains a
"shadow figure" because few details
about his life are known. He never became a
citizen of this country, didn't speak English and
there is no record of his having had a will or
his death recorded. He died in 1901 and is buried
in Williamsport, PA.
Frederick J. Sr.
(1887-1956) married Anna A. Auchmuty (1888-1953)
June 4, 1910. They had seven children: Frederick
J. II, Ruth, Viola, Mae, Pauline, June, and Cleo.
Augustus and his sons
established a family restaurant business in
Williamsport that lasted from 1915 to 1968. At
one time the family was engaged in rental real
estate as well as the Day and Night Restaurant.
Frederick J. II
(1911-1996) married Mary E. Kilmer Miller (1910-2000). At
the time of World War II, Frederick J.
II became a painting and decorating contractor.
Mary E. was a school teacher. Three children were
born: Frederick J. III, Richard J., and Susan M. Frederick J. III
was an Air Force Officer, Richard a school
teacher and Susan lives at home. Frederick III married Ruby A.