Gottfried “Godfrey” Frederick Faehnle was born on January 13, 1849 in Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. His parents were Gottfried Faehnle and Christina Lenik, both of Württemberg, Germany.
On March 30, 1880, Gottfried arrived in America aboard the ship named the SS Nederland through the district port of New York at Castle Garden. The ship left from Antwerp, Belgium heading for New York, carrying over 700 passengers. Gottfried lists his occupation at the time as a “vinlager”. Vinlager is a dutch word for “winery”. Given his later profession, it is quite possible that Gottfried was involved in the business of drink-making at home in Stuttgart.
(Page one shows the details of the ship and voyage. Page 8 shows Gottfried’s entry on the ship manifest.)
In the 1880 census, Gottfried is found living on 2nd Carondelet Avenue in one dwelling with over 50 other mostly German brewery workers. They all list their occupation as “works in brewery”. This brewery was the Anheuser-Busch Brewery, where Gottfried spent the remainder of his career. The brewing business in St Louis was a mainly German profession in 1880 and one that was gaining popularity and building the economy of the St Louis area. The central geographic location and advanced refrigeration abilities of the 1880′s allowed the brewing companies of St Louis to extend their product’s reaching area from Nebraska to Texas.
On October 27, 1881, Gottfried married Caroline Sophia Kraemer in Holt, Missouri.
They went on to have five children together:
- Oscar Louis Faehnle (b. 1882 in St Louis – d. 1946)
- Otto Frederik Faehnle (b. 1884 in St Louis – d. 1960)
- Adolph Earnest Faehnle (b. 1887 in St Louis – d. 1945)
- Sophia “Sophie” I. Faehnle (b. 1889 in Nebraska – d. 1954 in St Louis)
- Christina Marie Faehnle (b. 1893 in St Louis)
Based on Sophie’s birth place and Gottfried’s employment with the brewery which expanded from Nebraska to Texas, it would appear that the family spent some time living in Nebraska for Gottfried’s job or merely traveling there.
On October 2, 1896, Gottfried was naturalized through the St. Louis City Court of Criminal Corrections.
In 1910, the family is living at a home that they own, located at 3578 Indiana Avenue, St Louis, Missouri which is now a parking lot a the corner of Indiana Avenue and Miami Streets in St. Louis. Gottfried lists his occupation a brewer at a brewery however he also listed that he had been out of work for the entire year of 1909.
In 1911, Gottfried was diagnosed with stomach cancer. On March 1, 1913 at 3:15 pm, Gottfried passed away from carcinoma of the stomach. He was cremated through the Missouri Crematory on March 3, 1913.