The passenger manifest of the British Queen not only tells us Julius Paul’s age, hometown, and occupation. It also tells us that he wasn’t travelling alone. At the bottom of page one of the manifest, just before Julius is listed on the top of page two, are three men with the same last name from the very same hometown as Julius: Ludwig Krüger, age 53; Carl Krüger, age 30; and another Ludwig Krüger, age 16. All three are, like Julius, laborers headed for North America.

Who are these men? A bit of old-fashioned genealogical research shows that they are an uncle and two cousins of Julius. Ludwig the elder is the husband of Julius’s maternal aunt Wilhelmina Ludmann, and Carl and Ludwig the younger are two of the couple’s sons. But simply saying they are an uncle and two cousins misrepresents their real relationship.

As an adult, Julius was always tight-lipped about his family of origin. To my knowledge, no parental names of any kind were ever handed down through his descendants in the United States. In fact, Julius always told people he was an orphan. That much was true. His mother died while he was an infant and his father died when he was only ten years old.

Julius did seem to have had a close relationship with the Krüger family, however. Ludwig Krüger the elder was a legal witness to the marriage of Julius and Brunis. He was also a legal witness to the birth of their first child, Helen. The other witness was Julius Kempe, a son-in-law of Ludwig and the husband of Julius’s cousin. Kempe and Ludwig’s wife Wilhelmina were Helen’s godparents. All three families — Paul, Krüger and Kempe — lived in the tiny village of Miłaczew. And, of course, Julius traveled to America with three of his Krüger relatives. As we know that Julius’s mother died when he was an infant, it seems likely that he was raised by this aunt and uncle, that they functioned as his parents, and that his Krüger cousins were more like his brothers and sisters.


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Page one of the manifest of the British Queen, Hamburg to West Hartlepool, UK, 29 April 1892. The Krügers appear at the very bottom as passengers 30-32.