Meta Emma Klopp – Friedrich and Emma’s Fourteenth Child – Part 3

The Tragic Loss of a Son

In 1910 the sons Werner (died in 1990) and Paul (died in 1932) were born in Weinheim. In 1910 came the transfer of their father to the renown senior high school in Mannheim, which was named after the French major and geographer “Tulla Oberschule”. The unremarkable years of a tranquil teacher’s existence were interrupted in the middle of World War I. In June 1916 Vincenz Mülbert was drafted into military service by the 14th Army Corps of the State of Baden. He served as a truck driver at the Recovery Unit I (Genesungsabteilung) of the Reserve Infantry Regiment 109. In October his daughter Hildegard was born in Mannheim.

During the static warfares in 1918, Vincenz took on active duty at the Aisne (east of Reims) and in the Upper Alsace. At the beginning of September 1918, he was declared “no useable for service at the front” on account of his highly strained nerves. As “being capable of garrison service”, he experienced the war’s end at the balloon battalion 139. On 22 November 1918, he received his demobilization papers and was released from his military service.

He returned to the former teaching post at the school in Mannheim. In May 1923, his wife Amalie gave birth to the twins Gertrud Ida and Hedwig Margarethe in Mannheim. In December followed the birth of the sixth and last child Rudolf Pius. It was according to a teacher’s news bulletin a premature birth. At that time the family possessed a home in Quadrant L of Mannheim.

From an application for financial assistance in September 1932 to the school administration one may be able to reconstruct the circumstances of a serious fateful event. The 19-year old son Paul, a commercial employee, suffered from depression and had already been receiving medical treatment for a long time. On 30 August 1932, he withdrew from his parental home and for ten days was reported missing. On the fourth of September, the Hessian police found his clothes on the banks of the riverbank of the River Main near Frankfurt. “Whether it was an accident or suicide could not be determined”. The body was retrieved from the river on the 7th of September, transferred to Mannheim and buried there. Mülbert already owed a large amount of money to the bank and was forced to borrow some more to cover the cost of transportation and burial expenses, He had asked for assistance in the amount of 258 marks.

To be continued …

11 comments

  1. Amy · April 24

    How tragic. We knew then (and still know) so little about mental illness. I wonder whether Vincenz’s strained nerves were also a symptom of some underlying mental health issue. Perhaps the continuation will tell us?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Peter Klopp · April 24

      Indeed, poor Vincenz was under extreme mental stress. Then next episode will give more insight into his problems, Amy.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Amy · April 24

        I look forward to reading it, Peter. Have a good weekend.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. crowcanyonjournal · April 24

    I remember Mannheim from our Rhine River Cruise in 2012. We spent one morning touring Speyer and in the afternoon we went on a bus trip to Heidelberg. While we were touring Heidelberg our ship sailed downstream to Mannheim and our bus driver took us there after our tour. I think our ship sailed off as soon as we all got back on board and the next morning we woke up in Mainz. So we saw very little of Mannheim.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Peter Klopp · April 24

      A very enjoyable boat tour on the river Rhine, if the weather is cooperating, of course.

      Like

  3. Such a tragedy for the family, back than depression wasn’t really openly recognized without the stigma. As well suicide has been treated as a very dad stigma, thanks god that has changed over the century.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. kopfundgestalt · April 26

    My paternal grandfather had a daughter who had at 15 mental health problems. She came to the mental hospital.
    The grandfather wrote several times that he needed her for the field work. But he didn’t get her back and nothing happened to her there, luckily.
    She was all called idiotic and probably died in her late nineties in a mental hospital. 80 years of dementia.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ankur Mithal · May 2

    Tragic!

    Liked by 1 person

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