Tag Archives: Germans

Many Germans feel abandoned by their government

ɢᴇʀᴍᴀɴꜱ ᴏᴘᴛ ꜰᴏʀ ᴘᴏʟɪꜱʜ
ᴀꜱ ᴀ ꜱᴇᴄᴏɴᴅ ʟᴀɴɢᴜᴀɢᴇ
ᴏᴠᴇʀ ꜰʀᴇɴᴄʜ ᴀɴᴅ ꜱᴘᴀɴɪꜱʜ

Their is a sense of neglect from ʙᴇʀʟɪɴ. That and ᴘᴏʟᴀɴᴅ’s rapid economic rise are fueling the shift.

It’s part of a deeper shift taking hold in a part of ɢᴇʀᴍᴀɴʏ where decades of slow economic development have pushed those with means to seek a new future far from their homes, leaving behind an aging population in ever more desolate villages and towns.”

“Many here feel the federal government in Berlin has abandoned them, but now, their gaze is turning to the east.

Remember Donald Rumsfeld and what he said years ago?

“I was ambassador to ɴᴀᴛᴏ… When we would go in and make a proposal, there wouldn’t be unanimity. There wouldn’t even be understanding… You’re thinking of ᴇᴜʀᴏᴘᴇ as Germany and France. I think that’s ᴏʟᴅ ᴇᴜʀᴏᴘᴇ. …the center of gravity is shifting to the east.”

Despite being mocked and ridiculed by many in the news media, and the political and military establishment, he was right.

“Once a source of cheap, unskilled labor and affordable cigarettes, Poland has developed into ᴇᴀꜱᴛᴇʀɴ ᴇᴜʀᴏᴘᴇ’s economic powerhouse… Now, more and more eastern ɢᴇʀᴍᴀɴꜱ are betting on Poland as their hope for a brighter future…”



His complete name is Gotthilf David Siegfried Lentz.

Recently I visited a friend, a retired Methodist minister, who has been visiting her daughter in Seattle.

For years she lived and worked in Seattle. The family is from Vermont, and she spent much of her youth in Switzerland, where her father was stationed with the State Department, I think.

While we talking one evening, she mentioned my tweet. She was curious about the name. We figured out the God part, but didn’t get farther than that. So later I decided to use the Google, specifically Google Translate, and after learning the meaning of his name, I sent off a note to her.

Just learned that Gotthilf is ‘God’s help’ in English.”

And she promptly replied, after her return home to Portland via the Bolt Bus.

“That is fantastic…nice name.”

Get thyself on Twitter, Hager-Smith! And then ye may tweet me directly.¹


1. She is, or was, on Twitter, but hasn’t updated her account since 2014.

Ludwig of Gröbenzien


I’m so glad I’ve finally found a record of my great-great grandfather, Ludwig Lentz of Gröbenzien. Gröbenzien was a village in Germany, near the Polish border.

The images are from the Borntuchen church book, known in German as Kirchenbuch. This is the first time I’ve found Ludwig in any historical records. And there’s another unknown, his son Eduard. Most other surviving records from this branch of the family are in other church books.

I’ve included links to the image files of the complete record and the key at the top of the page.



I’ve been wondering about the name August, the Germanic form of Augustus. It is prominent among my maternal grandfather’s family.

Augustus II the Strong (German: August II. der Starke) | His great physical strength earned him the nicknames the Strong, the Saxon Hercules and Iron-Hand.

My great grandfather was Albert August Fromke. His younger brother was August L. Fromke. Albert’s wife was Augusta Wilhelmina Lentz.

I am hoping to learn about why this was such a strong tradition in Germany. There is many a German prince with the name and a few princesses too.

There’s Augustus the Strong, born in Dresden and elected King of Poland. There’s Augustus the Third, son of Augustus the Strong who also became King of Poland.

Then, there’s Augustus the Younger. He had the largest collection of books and manuscripts north of the Alps. There is Augustus d’Este, a grandson of King George III of Great Britain.

It all goes back to Augustus, Elector of Saxony. And, of course, before him, there was Rome. The first Roman emperor is known as Augustus.


At one point, the world witnessed fifty thousand deaths a day in World War I, totaling seventeen million by its end.

“ . . . the Great War, as it was initially called, sucked up lives at rate of almost 50,000 a day at one point. The Germans committed atrocities against civilians in Belgium, and reduced the Cathedral of Arras to rubble. The soil of Northern France, pockmarked with war craters, is all one big burial ground for lost souls — the graveyards you see, 410 military cemeteries, and the graveyards you don’t see.

When the war ended, after 17 million deaths worldwide, a headline in Britain’s Daily Mirror proclaimed: ‘Democracy Triumphs Over the Last of the Autocrats.’”

My great-great uncle was one of those 17 million.


Well, I never. Ben Franklin wasn’t keen on non-British immigrants, particularly Germans into Pennsylvania.

Ben Franklin

Few of their children in the country learn English… The signs in our streets have inscriptions in both languages … Unless the stream of their importation could be turned they will soon so outnumber us that all the advantages we have will not be able to preserve our language, and even our government will become precarious.”

…the language so vexing to him was the German spoken by new arrivals to Pennsylvania in the 1750s, a wave of immigrants whom Franklin viewed as the “most stupid of their nation.”