Monday, July 12, 2010

130 Years of the Beine Family in America

July 12, 1880 - July 12, 2010

Binn? Beim? Beine? Just how do you spell my last name? (If you want to know how to pronounce it, see Megan Smolenyak's book, Who Do You Think You Are, page 47). When I was looking for the ship passenger list for my immigrant Beine family, this is what I encountered:

Germans to America (Vol. 36, page 26) lists the family with the surname Binn. The Philadelphia passenger lists index (National Archives microfilm roll M360-7) lists the family members with the surname Beim. Well, they almost got it right. It was the Philadelphia index that actually led me to the passenger list, which I found at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City in 2002. Here are the details...

Ship: SS Pennsylvania
Arrived: July 12, 1880 in Philadelphia from Liverpool
Ship's Captain: Harris
335 total passengers

The Beine family are on pages 1 and 2:

Augt. Beine, 40, male, labourer, Germany (August)
Mrs. Beine, 39, female, wife, Germany (Christina)
Augt., 11, male, child, Germany (August)
Elisabeth, 9, female, child, Germany
Anna, 7, female, child, Germany
Johannis, 5, male, child, Germany
Augt., 4, female, child, Germany (Augusta)
Anton, 2, male, child, Germany
Helen, -, female, infant, Germany

From: Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at the Port of Philadelphia; FHL Microfilm Roll #419674 (National Archives Microfilm Roll #M425-100)

August and Mrs. (Christina) Beine are my great great grandparents. Their son, August, is my great grandfather. They left their oldest daughter, Christine, behind in Germany. You can read her story here: Christina Beine, the Girl They Left Behind. I only have three records that mention the youngest child, Helena - her German baptismal record, the family's German emigration record and the Philadelphia passenger list (above). After that she disappears. There's no indication she died on the voyage. I'm assuming she died while still an infant after the family settled in Missouri. But I've never been able to find a death or burial record for her.

August and Christine had one more child, William, after arriving in the United States. William's World War II draft registration card gives his place of birth as Silica, Missouri. That ended up being an important clue that showed the family first settled in Jefferson County, Missouri before moving to St. Louis.

My great great grandfather, August Beine, was a coal miner in Germany and became one in the U.S. as well. Once settled in St. Louis, he worked in coal mines across the Mississippi River in Illinois, where he eventually lived. The 1910 census shows August, Christine, William, and a grandson, Fred, living in Looking Glass Township/New Baden Village, Illinois. August died in 1913, Christine in 1925. They are buried in Saints Peter and Paul Cemetery in St. Louis.

August Beine was born in 1839 in a small German village called Grosseneder. His wife, Christina Walter (born 1840), is from another small German village called Siddinghausen. I visited both villages in 1995. The couple was married in Stoppenberg, which was then a suburb and is now a part of, the German city of Essen. Their children (except William) were baptized at the St. Nikolaus Catholic Parish there.

So July 12, 2010 is the 130th anniversary of this Beine family's arrival in the United States. I propose a celebration involving German beer. Prost!

For more information on my Beine immigrant family see:
How I Found Some Genealogy Records for My German Ancestors

Sources used for this article - 130 Years of the Beine Family in America

This article was updated on 8 March 2018.