Christian and Elisabeth Feussner Naumann

Elisabeth Feussner

Christian Naumann


Parents: Anna Margaretha Greiff and Weigand Naumann

Born: 1797 Gossfelden, Germany

Born: 1795 Gossfelden, Germany

Married: 1820, Christian Naumann

Married: 1820 Elisabeth Feussner

Died: 1859 Gossfelden

Died: 1855 Gosfelden

Interred: Gossfelden

Interred: Gossfelden

Occupation: Tailor

Only five of Elizabeth's children are known with assurance; the sixth child's name has not been confirmed. Son Henry's obituary only mentions one brother and sister in Germany (names not specified), and two brothers (John and Charles) who predeceased him in America in the 1890s, apparently indicating that the fourth brother died much previously, perhaps in Germany. Modern genealogists have confirmed that the family would have been most unhappy when daughter Katharine, the first-born child, married the local shepherd. While it appears that Christian disowned Katherine, it is thought that Elizabeth did not, based on the fact that Katherine named all three of her daughters Elizabeth. Elizabeth's son Michael also named two daughters Elisabeth. However, it is also possible that the given name Elizabeth is based on Saint Elizabeth of Marburg, and only Katherine's brothers helped her out.

Christian was a tailor by trade and a large landholder, owning the Gossfelden estate called "Chrests." The farm was luxurious, according to granddaughter Elizabeth; she stated there was an abundance of food and servants as well (see story). Christian was undoubtedly very upset when his first-born child and only daughter got pregnant by the local shepherd, and married him; according to family stories, he gave her nothing -- the small plot of land given to her was by her brothers. It appears that his daughter's family was virtually starving, with only bread for meals, and not enough for that; it is hard to understand how one's heart could not soften in the next six years prior to his death. The church records for Gossfelden and Marburg are held at the Marburg archives, and apparently have not been microfilmed. The Naumann family is known to have been in Gossfelden since the late 1600s.



Date of Birth, Place

Date of Death, Place

Married - date and to whom

# children

1. (Anna) Katherina

1/25/1822 Gossfelden

8/16/1901 Gossfelden

10/28/1849 to Peter Krieger


2. Michael

2/11/1825 Gossfelden

2/17/1901 Gossfelden,Germany

1854 Katharina Naumann


3. Heinrich "Henry"*

12/24/1827 Gossfelden

4/6/1899 Waterloo, Iowa

6/2/1859 Rosina Hillier


4. Johannes "John"

2/2/1831 Gossfelden

9/6/1890 Waterloo, Iowa

1860 Catherine Betts/Betz


5. Charles

~1837 Gossfelden

11/1/1898 Waterloo, Iowa

1867 Dorothy Miller/Moeler


6. Christian?

~1830s? Gossfelden

<1899 Gossfelden?, Germany




A page of pictures of Gossfelden and Marburg, with the church bells of St. Elizabeth Church of Marburg.

*I found a reference from another genealogist that this Charles' father was Christian Naumann of Hesse, but his mother was Catherina Maria Kreuger of Wendemark, Suchein. It is of interest that his pallbearers included a William Krueger. Charles is mentioned in brother Henry's obituary as a brother, but the family may not have distinguished between a full-brother and a half-brother. (It is curious that on the 1870 census, Charles is listed as from Prussia while Henry, John, Louis and Elizabeth and John Krieger are from Hesse; even if this was Charles' wife who answered this question, being from Gossfelden herself, she would have known it was Hesse. On the 1880 census the birthplace is listed as Hesse.) His obituary specifies his and his wife's birthplaces as Gossfelden, although they married in Waterloo, Iowa. It is assumed that this is totally incorrect and Charles' mother was Elizabeth -- the Gossfelden genealogy book mentions no second marriage for Christian, and has a 1859 deathdate for Elisabeth, and there is no mention of a "love-child" born out of wedlock for Christian.

*Note: This Henry is the rich uncle to whom Elizabeth Krieger wrote and asked if she could emigrate and work for him. On the 1870 census Henry Nauman is 43 and living with his wife and four children, plus a presbyterian minister and Katherina's two children -- Elizabeth 17 and John 14! Although Elizabeth was staunchly Lutheran, as were John and Charles Nauman, Henry was not, as witnessed by his census data and his obituary.

It is certain there was a sixth child, but uncertain if he was named Christian. Granddaughter Elizabeth Krieger mentions a rich uncle in Marburg. This would have been in the mid 1860s, prior to her emigration in 1868. By 1855 her uncle Michael would be living at Chrests in Gossfelden, Henry emigrated in 1854, John emigrated in 1856, and Charles in 1864. Since Elizabeth was born in 1852 and emigrated in 1868, it is thought that this story could refer to another Naumann uncle. The Krieger family was not rich, and it would not have been a reference to a Krieger relative. Genealogist Charles Stouffer ( has five sons for Christian: Henry, Michael, John, Charles and Christ -- source unknown. So it is assumed that it is the fifth son Christian who is the "rich uncle in Marburg." It is possible that Christian and Charles are one and the same. Charles is an Americanized name (like Henry and John); usually the German form is Karl, but it is possible that this was Christian, and the rich uncle has another given name. In any case, it is probably more likely this sixth child did not emigrate and died young in Germany as he is not mentioned in brother Henry's obituary.

German genealogist Anna Naumann only sent selected information on the families in the Gossfelden houses, and included no information, other than the birthdates above for Henry and John, confirming they were Katherina's brothers. In 2011 Karin Shutz in Germany sent the page on "Chrests" to Cindy McDaniel confirming that Michael Naumann (born February 11, 1825 and died February 17, 1901) was the son of Christian Naumann and Elisabetha Fessner, and married Katharina Naumann (born January 9, 1827 and died January 1, 1880)(granddaughter of Weigand Naumann, daughter of Johann Michael Naumann of "Weigands"), and he inherited the "Chrests" estate. The pages from the books below confirm that Christian Naumann descended from the Naumanns of house #10, as does his father Weigand Naumann, but the exact link is not specified.

"Gossfelden - Grenzgang 1995" -- genealogical book on the families and houses of Gossfelden -- selected pages (whole book was not mailed to me):
cover (by Historian Anna Naumann)
house #5 "Weigands" (~p.20-21)(Weigand Naumann 1756-1819)(Michael Naumann 1782-1836)(Johann Henrich Naumann 1814-1872)
house #10 "Lettermanns"(p.30-31)(Kurt Engle 1570-?)(Heinrich Naumann 1648-1707)(Michael Naumann 1684-1747)(Johannes Naumann 1715-1785), p.2 (p.32-33)
house #60 "Kriegers"(p.180-181)(Johannes Krieger 1762-1836)(Johannes Krieger 1799-1863)
house #63½ "Chrests" (p.188-189)(Christian Naumann 1795-1855)(Michael Naumann 1825-1901)
house #68½ "Dippels" (p.204-205)(Peter Krieger 1818-1885)

My translation of the "Chrests" page: Christian Naumann, a tailor from Gossfelden (his father was from [the house called] "Lettermanns") married Elisabetha Feussner, a single woman also of Gossfelden, in 1820. The given name of Christian was the first in the village. The oldest son of [Christian's] six children, Michael Naumann, a professional tailor like his father, took over the house. In 1854 he wedded Katharina Naumann of "Wejerts." His older sister married shepherd Peter Krieger of House #60. House #63½ was enlarged, making an addition for the Krieger family ([house] #68½). Michael and Catherine Naumann of #63½ had six children. The youngest daughter Elisabeth married a Sarnau of "Jacobs," and her sister, also named Elisabeth, married a Cappel. The only son, Christian Naumann, was a third-generation tailor, and married Katherine Grebe of "Backes" in 1888. Their son, Michael Naumann, married Margaret Lesch from Grosseelheim in 1913. The daughter of this couple, Anna Catherine Naumann, is the current owner of the house.

My translation of the "Dippels" page: Shepherd Peter Krieger, who was born in Colbe but resided in Gossfelden house #60, married Catherine Naumann of “Chrests” in 1849. They built their house onto “Chrests,” making it into a double-house, with the Krieger part becoming number 68½. ...

It is curious that granddaughter Elisabeth's story insinuates that Christian disowned his daughter, and that it was the brothers who gave her the land. The Gossfelden genealogy book states that the addition made the house into a "Doppelhause" implying that the Krieger home abutted the Naumann home; if so, my guess is that this addition was not made until after Christian died and Michael owned the home; the Kriegers probably lived in shepherds' cottages until then (1849-1855+), with no permanent home until after 1855. However, with the number being 68½ and not 63½, perhaps it was on another property and not property that originally belonged to the Nauman estate, and Katherina's brothers bought her the property and built the house soon after the marriage.

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