Tag Archives: Louis Christian Groshans

Louis Christian Groshans 1872-1944

Louis Christian Groshans

When Louis Christian Groshans was born on October 5, 1872, his father, Gottfried, was 24 and his mother, Salome, was 22. (Note: some of our family hand-written notes say his mother’s name was Selma)

Louis married Elizabeth Clair Auguste “Elise” Bosse on April 23, 1915, in North Dakota. They had six children in 13 years. He died on July 9, 1944, in Toledo, Ohio, at the age of 71, and was buried in Burlington, North Dakota.

29 April 1915 Bosse and Groshans wed Minot ND

29 April 1915 Bosse and Groshans wed- Minot ND

Louis  immigrated to the United States in October of 1882. The information on his immigration date is from the 1900 US census.

Louis was a coal miner. He was deafened by a coal accident at the age of 15. Louis was also a auto garage manager according to our family stories. As you can see by one of these stories below, he had another accident in the auto garage.

30 Aug 1917 Louis Groshans accident in minot ND

30 Aug 1917 Louis Groshans accident in minot ND

04 March 1915 Louis Groshans Minot, ND

04 March 1915 Louis Groshans Minot, ND

This news article shows that he might have been involved in the construction of an electrical power plant.


24 Dec. 1914 Louis Groshans Minot, ND

24 Dec. 1914 Louis Groshans Minot, ND

Louis died in the mid 1940’s from being hit by a car.  Our notes say this happened in Cincinnati, OH.

20 Jul 1944 The Times, Streator IL

20 July 1944, The Times, Streator, IL

Here is how we relate:

Louis Christian Groshans 1872-1944 a great-uncle of the children of Robert Jack Groshans
Gottfried Gottlieb Theophile Grosshans 1847-1919 was the Father of Louis Christian Groshans
Gottlieb Jack Groshans 1878-1941 was the Son of Gottfried Gottlieb Theophile Grosshans
Robert Jack Groshans 1926-1984 was the Son of Gottlieb Jack Groshans
Arrived in 1882 and was naturalized in 1904

Gottlieb Theophile Groshans 1847-1919

Gottlieb Groshans was the Great, Great Grandfather of my children.

When Gottlieb Groshans (or Grosshans) was born on 25 Nov 1847, his father, Jean Jacques “Jacob” Grosshans, was 39 and his mother, Marie Sigwalt Grosshans, was 30. He married Salome Lauffer in 1870. They had eight children in 17 years. He died on 25 Aug 1919, in Kankakee, Illinois, at the age of 71, and was buried in Streator, Illinois.

Recently, I have discovered that Gottlieb’s name originally was Theophile Grosshans. Theophile is a French name and means “loved by God.” When the French region of Alsace where Theophile was placed under German control, Theophile needed to change to a German name. The German name he selected was Gottlieb because it also means “one who loves God.” I find it remarkable that he kept the meaning of his name intact even though he had to make a name change! The 1871German take over of the Alsace region occurred after the German Empire was victorious in the Franco Prussian War. The German occupation lasted until 1918. So, Gottlieb was 24 when his homeland became controlled by the German Empire.

1847GROSSHANS Gottlieb 1847

As you can see by time of the 1919 death notices below, he was using the name Gottlieb Groshans.

27 Aug 1919 The Times Streator, IL

26 Aug 1919 The Times, Streator IL death of G. Groshans

26 Aug 1919 The Times, Streator IL

Here are the children that I have found in my research:


THE 1900 US CENSUS (note that Salome is not listed in this census as she was deceased)

In the 1900 US census, he is listed as Gottliebes G*Shous.  (Please remember that the census takers did not worry about writing what they “heard.”) In the 1900 census, we learn this information: He is the head of household with a birth date listed as October 1849. So, the there is a birth date conflict as he was actually born in 1847. Did he want to appear younger in the census or was there a poor note-taker? He states his occupation as Farm Laborer. He owns a home and it looks like it was on 6th Street in LaSalle, Streator, IL. He states that his birth place was France and that this was also the birth place of his parents. Gottlieb states that he immigrated to the USA in 1886.

In this 1900 census, Gottlieb is living with his son Louis who is employed as a coal miner. Louis’ birth date is listed as October 1872. The census states that Louis was born in France.

In this 1900 census, Gottlieb is also living with his daughter Zetmar. Her birth date is listed as May of 1877 in France. Her occupation is as a garment worker. (My other research shows she may have used the name Sarah and that her birth date may not match this census???)

In this 1900 census, Gottlieb is also living with his daughter Annie. Her birth date is listed as May 1881. She was born in Illinois. Her occupation is also listed as a garment worker.

In this 1900 census, Gottlieb is also living with his daughter Louisa who was born in July of 1884 in Illinois. The census shows that Louisa was 15 years old and still in school.


The Family Search # for Gottlieb is LVDW-RB1.

The Find a Grave link is :https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/79547191/gottlieb-groshans

I wrote a blog that is related:https://tellinglifestories.org/2017/02/01/salome-a-k-a-selma-laufer-groshans/

Sibling of Gottlieb:

Gottlieb had a brother named Henry Grosshans. Henry married Salome Hartweg on November 5, 1873. They had nine children in 17 years. He died on May 13, 1930.

Here is a news clipping about Henry:


15 May 1930 The Times Streator, IL

Salome “Sally” Lauffer Groshans 1850-1898

Salome Groshans was the Great Great Grandmother of my children.  Fact finding for her life story has been challenging and my research is spotty and incomplete. I have hit “brick walls” while searching for something (anything) that would tell me a story about her.  My hope is that someone reading this article will have more information and answers to  many of my questions.

So, what do I know?  Facts on ancestry sites about Salome’s life are almost NONE.  I was only able to understand some of her story through the history of her husband and her 8 children and those 8 children’s descendants.  Salome and Gottlieb immigrated to the United States having arrived from Alsace ( an area in Europe that sometimes belonged to France and at other times to Germany.)   Illinois was the place that Salome and her husband Gottlieb Jack Groshans settled in.  They moved to a region in Illinois that was known for the coal mining industry. In fact, many of the men in this extended family, worked as coal miners.

I started the research by looking at  the 1900 census. Salome’s husband, Gottlieb Groshans, is listed as head of household in that year.  At the time of the 1900 census he was 50 years old. Salome is not listed in the 1900 census as she had died in 1899. In the census, Gottlieb states that  his birth was in France in October of 1849. He states that he immigrated to the United States in 1886.  Gottlieb lists his occupation, for that year, as Farm Laborer.  In this 1900 census his home is listed as 6th Street in the town of Bruce, LaSalle, Illinois.

It appears that Salome only lived to the age of 47 and yet still bore 8 children before her death in 1899. I believe she was born on 30 June 1851. Her children were:

1st child – Caroline “Carrie” Groshans 1869-1936.  Birth on 14 May 1869 in Alsace-Lorraine, France.  Death on 3 May 1936 in Streator, LaSalle, Illinois. Caroline married Alvin Weber in 1888.  Caroline states that her immigration to the states was in 1887 (a different date than her father had listed). Like her father, Carrie is buried at Riverview Cemetery, Streator, LaSalle, Illinois. Carrie Groshans and  Alvin Weber had these children:

  1. Charles Frederick “Freddie” Weber, 1891-1915. Married Ida May Weber. In the 1910 census he lived at W. Barber Street, Streator, Illinois.  His occupation was coal miner in 1910.  In 1920, his occupation is worker in a factory. In the 1930 census, his occupation is listed as truck driver for a bakery.
  2. Walter P. Weber, 24 July 1893-16 Oct. 1955. Married Marie Wilhelmina Erle. He worked as a carpenter for the railroad.
  3. Ernest E. Weber, 1895-1983. He married Zelma. In 193o census he is a proprietor of a bakery.  Ernest is also a WWII veteran.  He too is buried at Riverview Cemetery, Streator, Illinois. ernest-e-weber
  4. Louis Weber, 30 Sept. 1897 – 18 Feb. 1973.  Married Lillian M. Kettman.  In the 1930 census his occupation is baker in a bakery shop.
  5. Reita Weber, 26 Sept. 1901 – 24 January 1983.  Death in Los Angeles, CA. Possible spouse, ? Beuscher.
  6. George A. Weber, 1904-? In the 1930 census he states that he is a single man working as a truck driver for a bakery.
  7. Norma Kathryn Weber, 28 Feb. 1905- 17 Nov. 1994.  She married Harry Hoagland. In the 1940 census, her husband lists his occupation as salesman.
  8. Bertha F. Weber, 11 Feb. 1907-3 Jan. 2003.  Bertha married Andrew J. Hudachko. In the 1930 census, Bertha lists her occupation as salesperson in a bakery.
  9. Hazel Weber, 1910 – ?.

2nd child- Maria “Mary” Rosina Groshans 1869-?  Maria was born in Germany. In 1888, Mary married Theodore Oeser, 14 Dec. 1866-31 Oct. 1946.  Their family moved to California at some point. Theodore lists his occupation in the 1900 census as coal miner.  Mary and Theodore had these children:


  1. Frank Oeser, Nov. 1890-1909. He died at age 19. He is buried at Riverview Cemetery https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=79621855&ref=acom
  2. Albert G. Oeser, 5 Dec. 1892-6 Dec. 1958.  Albert married Jean Brown.  They had daughter Alma J. Oeser 1915-2007 and son Arthur J. Oeser 1917-? As you can see, he lists his occupation as coal miner.


  1. Alma E. Oeser, 1894-1904.  She died at age 10.
  2. Carl Arthur Oeser, 26 Aug. 1896 – 4 March 1923.  He died at the age of 26. He married Irma Johnson and had three children: Carlye Arnold Oeser, 1919-? ,  Reita Arline Oeser, 19 August 1919 – 17 March 2008, and Amanda Oeser, 11 August 1921 – 17 July 2009.


  1. Edwin F. Oeser, 1898- 25 Oct. 1992. He married Grace E. Dayson. They had a daughter, Barbara Marie Oeser, 27 Sept. 1926 – 29 April 1998.  Edwin was the president of Acme eyelet and stamping company.
  2. Henry Theodore “Heini” Oeser, 2 March 1901- 16 June 1932.

3rd child- Louis Christian Groshans, 5 October 1872- 9 July 1944.  Louis was born in France. Louis married Elizabeth. Family hand written notes say that he was an auto garage manager.  He was deafened by a coal mine accident at age 15.  He died in the mid 1940’s from being hit by a car.  Our notes say this happened in Cincinnati, OH. The children of Louis and Elizabeth were:

  1. Lewis Eric Groshans, 1872-1944,
  2. Lillian Reita Groshans,  1919-2001,
  3. Howard F. Groshans, 1923-1980,
  4. Donald Ray Groshans, 1926-2001
  5. Dr. Russell G. Groshans, 1929 – 2015 http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/washingtonpost/obituary.aspx?pid=176104139
  6. Sharon Groshans, 1931-?

Louis Groshans and Elizabeth Bosse

Louis Groshans and Elizabeth Bosse

4th child-Sarah Groshans 1875-1965. Born in Sundhouse, Bas-Rhin, Alsace, France. Spouse August Benson.  She lists her occupation as garment worker.

30 Mar 1965 death of Sarah Groshans Benson The Times, Streator, IL

30 Mar 1965 The Times, Streator, IL

Groshans and Benson 31 Oct 1901 The Streator Free Press, IL

31 Oct 1901 The Streator Free Press, IL

5th child-Gottlieb Jack Groshans, 10 March 1878 – 28 July 1941.

Gottlieb Jack Groshans


 Gottlieb or “G. Jack” is our family’s direct ancestor.  He is the Great Grandfather of my children.  He was born in France and died in Bruce, Streator, LaSalle, IL. At the age of 34, he married Maude Lillian Meador in 1912 in Carroll, Arkansas. His 3 children were all born in Arkansas. Family legend is that he had been apprenticed in Streator to be a boiler maker, but left that profession to run a farm.  I am not sure when he left Arkansas to return to Illinois.  He was 48 years old when his youngest son Robert was born in Arkansas.  The next residence reference I found was from 1935 (he was 57 years old) was living in Bruce, LaSalle, IL. The children of Gottlieb Jack Groshans and Maude Lillian Meador were:

  1. Rita Elizabeth Groshans, 16 January 1920-12 April 1997.  She was born in Eureka Springs, Carroll, Arkansas.  Rita was the Great Aunt to my children.  Records indicate that she also lived with her family in Streator, Il. She married Henry Tonjes Baumann on 12 July 1943. The marriage took place in Ypsilanti, MI. They had one daughter, Barbara Anne Baumann who married Daniel Walter.
  2. Robert Jack Groshans, 14 April 1926- 17 March 1984.  Robert is our family’s direct ancestor and was the loving grandfather of my children.  He was born in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. As a child, he moved with his family to Streator, IL.Robert married Madeline Mary Bravin in Washington, DC on 19 April, 1952.  Shortly after their marriage, they resided in Ypsilanti, MI. Later, Bob and Madeline moved to Saline, MI. Robert passed away at the age of 57 and continues to be greatly missed by the family.
  3. Charlotte Zelma Groshans (infant death, died at 3 days old).  I do not know the birth order for Charlotte.

6th child- Louise Groshans, July 1884-1969 Louise was born in Illinois. She married Joseph Mueller. The children of Louise Groshans and Joseph Mueller are:

  1. George J. Mueller born in approx. 1906 in North Dakota.
  2. Louise Mueller born in approx. 1907 in North Dakota.
  3. John D. Mueller born in approx. 1909 in North Dakota.
  4. Jacob Mueller born in approx. 1910 in Cameron, Ward, North Dakota.
  5. Mary Mueller born in approx. 1912 in North Dakota
  6. Donald Richard Mueller born 8 August 1918 in Ryder Ward, North Dakota.  Died 20 December 1987 in Streator, Il.

19 Oct 1969 death of Louise Spokane, WA

19 Oct 1969 Spokane, WA

7th child- Phillip August Groshans, 9 April 1887 -22 May 1952.  Was born in Streator, IL. In the 1930 census he states that his occupation is repairing furniture. His burial is at Hillcrest Memorial Park in Streator, IL. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army.

draft card for Philip Groshans

veteran headstone for Philip GroshansPhilip Groshans 1900 census

Philip Groshans find a grave

Groshans from 1943 Streator Illinois City Directory

8th child- Jacob “Jake” Groshans.  No birth or death information.  Possible spouse is Lillian.

As you can see, there are few facts that I have found on Salome.  One family treasure is a set of  hand-written notes that I believe were composed by my brother-in-law, Dan Groshans.  These notes provided me with names that helped my research.


Click on this link if you want to read a previous blog I wrote on  gottlieb-jack-groshans