Frederick & Christina Hempftling
Frederick A. Gottfried Hempftling .
Gottfried; (Gottfried Ehrhardt Martin Haenfling) (Hempftling
in the USA and Haenfling in Lobenstein, Germany) was born September
22, 1805 in Lobenstein, Saxony, Germany. His father was Johan
Heinrich Haenfling. Johan was a master tailor, as was Frederick.
The name of Frederick’s (Gottfried) mother is unknown.
Christina (Kristina) Henriette Wild (Wilton)
was born May 12, 1805 in Lobenstein, Saxony, Germany. Her
father was Gottfried Heinrich Wild, born June 16, 1774 in Lobenstein,
Saxony, Germany. Gottfried was a master weaver or cloth maker.
Christina's mother was Juliane Frederike Barthmann born in Neundorf,
Germany (no date).
Frederick Gottfried and Christina Henriette were married January
11,1828 in Lobenstein, Saxony, Germany. They were married at home
instead of in church without benefit of the Banns because the bride
was in childbed. It was important they marry before the birth
because an illegitimate son could not become a master craftsman.
Frederick and Christina had ten children, three of whom died at
an early age in Germany. Karl Heinrich, born January 11, 1828 (died
at six weeks), Karl Johan, born April 21, 1829 (died at nine weeks),
Louisa, born July 7, 1830, Christina, born August 12, 1832, Johanna,
born January 14, 1835 (died at three years), Lina, born April 3,
1837, Ferdinand, born March 7, 1839, Herman, born March 26, 1841,
Amalie, born June 24, 1844, and Maximillian, born January 17, 1847.
Frederick and Christina, with their seven children left
Lobenstein for America on May 22, 1849. When they reached Hamburg,
they were informed their passage money would cover only the parents
and five of the children. Two of the daughters, Christina and Lina,
remained in Hamburg for one year until the parents sent them passage
Frederick, Christina and the five children boarded a sailing
vessel and landed in New York City on August 29, 1849. Christina
and Lina joined them a year later. The family lived in New York
City for about five years. Christina married John J. Kuhn on May 8,
1853. The Hempftlings moved to Galena, Illinois in 1854. After 18
months, they still were not happy in Galena. Someone advised them
to move to Red Wing, which they did, arriving on February 4, 1856.
Minnesota was a Territory at that time. They established a home and
Frederick was a master tailor and before long had an excellent
“carriage trade.” In more concise terms, it was the people who
could afford tailor made suits.
Frederick was with a group of men who were instrumental in
establishing the first German Lutheran Church in Red Wing. He also
made and donated the red velvet receptacles for collections, which
were used for many years in the church.
It was said that Frederick could heal with the “laying on of
hands” like they did in Biblical times, and he cured many people.
He wanted to teach this method to one of his sons, but not one cared
to learn the art of healing through the Bible.
Frederick and Christina Hempftling celebrated their golden
wedding anniversary on January 11, 1877 in the Music Hall in Red
Wing. The men of the church presented a gold headed cane to
Frederick at this time. Frederick passed the cane on to John J.
After Christina died on March 24, 1878 at the age of 72 years and
11 months, I assume Frederick went to live with his daughter,
Christina. She and her husband, John J. Kuhn, and their family
lived in Red Wing. In 1887, they all moved to Stillwater where John
Kuhn entered the hotel business. Frederick died three months later
on June 27 at the age of 81 years and nine months.
Frederick and Christina were buried in St. John’s Cemetery, west
of Red Wing. At the head of the graves are two iron crosses with
two separate chains. The crosses are mounted in a solid, roughly
hewn stone. They are painted black with the cast words and letters
painted white. The crosses are a little over four feet in height.
Frederick designed them and had them cast at an iron works in Red
Wing quite some time before his death. They are rather outstanding
as well as unique.
A quotation from their family history is as follows:
“When I’se weally dood
through all the drate long day
Papa tells me a pearl of prize
And muzzers dlad to say
She was dood”
The information for
this family history came from the following sources:
- Sandra Beckering of Edgerton, Minnesota
- A report of German genealogist, Herbert Bissenschutt, who was
commissioned by Sandra Beckering
- The United States Census Records
- Christine Jacquith of Red Wing, Minnesota
- Hattie Westervelt of Red Wing, Minnesota
- Clerk of Court of Goodhue County in Red Wing
- St. John’s German Lutheran Church in Red Wing
- From the scrap book of my mother, Ora Kuhn
- St. John’s Cemetery West of Red Wing