August Otto Wilhelm Klopp (1884 – 1886) – Part II

Amazing Fertility in the Face of Death

The euphoria during the following two and a half years was almost without limits, even though P.F.W.Klopp’s milling business was on the decline. Around the time of Christmas 1884, most likely while they were still living in Magdeburg, Friedrich Klopp went about having another child. Anna, born on September 29, 1885, was the eighth child in the ever-growing Klopp family. Friedrich took his clan and moved back to Jersleben, where he found accommodation and presumably gainful employment with one of the three mill owners of his apprenticeship years. There he devoted his energies to the creation of yet another offspring and succeeded at the beginning of March 1886 in getting his wife expecting again.

Weekly Market in Today's Magdeburg - Photo credit: magdeburg.de

Weekly Market in Today’s Magdeburg – Photo credit: magdeburg.de

At the beginning of the same month on March 5, 1886 the sickly August Otto Wilhelm passed away at the age of one year and seven months. This early childhood death points to the poor standards of hygiene in the mill environment at Jersfeld of this era and highlights the tribute, which the family had to pay at their return to their home turf. The loss was bearable and soon forgotten.

Midland Canal near Jerleben - Photo Credit: wikipedia.org

Midland Canal near Jerleben – Photo Credit: wikipedia.org

During the weeks of Emma’s mourning 33-year-old husband Friedrich provided plenty of physical comfort and warmth, the result of which excluded any fear of extinction of the male lineage in the Klopp family.  Exactly nine months later on December 8, 1886, Wilhelm, the fifth son and by now the ninth child, made his entrance into the family. August Otto Wilhelm is the only Klopp child to be buried in the cemetery of the Jersleben church yard.

3 comments

  1. Interesting. My mom was the last of the big families 12 (8 survived)…our generations sit at 1 or 2-3. I think they felt every death deeply, any parent would, but with many children life was also relentless and one had to press ahead…I think.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. taphian · May 12, 2016

    if you have a lot of kids, at least some may survive. Times have been harder in former times and – as you write – not so hygienic like today. Your stories are always interesting to read, Peter, regards Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Bun Karyudo · May 20, 2016

    It is sad that so many children died young in those days. My grandmother’s family was huge too. She had so many brothers and sisters, many of them were adults before the last of them even made an appearance. By the time my parents were born, family sizes were rather smaller, though. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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