(The Cincinnati Strongman’s Sister)
1863-1899 – 36 Years Lived
Louisa Holtgreive was born in Königreich Hannover (the Kingdom of Hanover) in the
year 1863. Her parents were Frederick Joseph Holtgreive (Fred) and Elizabeth Schawe
Louisa’s mother had eight children in all, but only Louisa and her two brothers, Henry
and Frederick, survived childhood. Those three children gave her and their father 25
grandchildren. Though many children in those days died young of illness or accident,
by the time Fred and Lizzie were living out their old age in the next century, they were
surrounded by many loved ones.
Louisa’s father was a farmer who was also a skilled carpenter and notorious for his
strength. They lived in the northern part of present day Germany.
In 1871, the Kingdom of Hanover was conquered by Prussia and Hanover became a state in the German Empire. Louisa was seven years old. When the empire was being formed,
there was much unrest. People began emigrating to avoid the draft, to escape the
antiquated caste system, and to find work and opportunity in a trade industry.
In 1884, when Louisa was twenty years old, the family migrated to the United States.
Louisa traveled with her younger brother, Frederick, and their parents. Her older brother,
Henry, followed separately a couple of years later.
They left Bremen, a port city on the river Weser, which led to the North Sea. The
Holtgrieve family’s journey began by first getting to Bremen. Their exact origin is not yet
known, we just know that they lived “near Hanover”. So, they could have walked,
traveled by cart, steamboat or train to get to the port. Once there, they likely had to wait
for some time before actually boarding their ship.
Full Story: Louisa Holtgrewe and Family