Meet the Trumps: How America’s first family arrived in New York on a steamship from Germany in 1885 and built a sprawling empire in 4 generations

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Donald Trump’s grandfather, Friedrich Trump — born Friedrich Drumpf — emigrated to the US from Germany in 1885 at the age of 16.

Friedrich Trump was born in Kallstadt, Germany, and came to New York on a steamship, according to Post reporter Kristine Phillips 

“He didn’t know English. He couldn’t possibly have known English. He didn’t have anything like a high school diploma. He was literate, but in German,” Gwenda Blair, the author behind the 2000 book “The Trumps: Three Generations That Built an Empire,” told the Washington Post.

Friedrich Trump’s family in Germany had modest means and ran a small vineyard, per Phillips. He lived with his older sister on the Lower East Side in Manhattan after coming to New York.

A few years later, Friedrich moved to the Pacific Northwest, where he ran multiple businesses, like restaurants and hotels, across the region in former mining towns during the Gold Rush.

For years, the family said they were Swedish.

Per a 2016 New York Times story, the Trump family for years said they were Swedish.

Jason Horowitz, the author of the Times story, noted that this is said to have been born of a desire to make good with their Jewish friends and customers.

“He had a lot of Jewish tenants and it wasn’t a good thing to be German in those days,” John Walter, Donald Trump’s cousin, said of Fred Trump, Donald Trump’s father, talking about the time between World War II and the 1980s.

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The Trump family’s roots can be traced back to Kallstadt, a small German hamlet. The town also produced Johann Heinrich Heinz whose son Henry J. Heinz is the man behind Heinz ketchup, according to Sally McGrane of the New Yorker.

In 1902, Friedrich married Elisabeth Christ, a former neighbor in Kallstadt.

Elisabeth, who was 11 years her husband’s junior, met Friedrich during one of his visits home in 1901.

Elisabeth moved to America with her husband after their wedding. By then, Friedrich was an American citizen. He shuttered his businesses on the West coast and turned his attention to Queens, according to Jason Horowitz of The Times.

In 1904, the family went back to Germany only to be deported shortly thereafter.

Government officials ruled that Friedrich be deported as he had never fulfilled his mandatory military service and had failed to notify authorities of his move to the US. Friedrich wrote a letter to the prince regent of Bavaria in 1905 requesting that he be allowed to continue to live there, but his petitions were rejected.

Upon their return to the US in July of 1905, they lived in the South Bronx neighborhood of New York City.

Friedrich Trump died of the Spanish Flu in 1918.

Friedrich Trump was 49 years old when he fell sick in May 1918. He started feeling ill in the afternoon …read more

Source:: Businessinsider – Life


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