NameGustav BOTT , Grandfather, M
BirthSep 1, 1874, Niederauroff, Germany
DeathJan 11, 1969, Tyler, Smith County, Texas Age: 94
BurialJan 13, 1969, Oakwood Cemetery, Tyler, Smith County, Texas
OccupationMechanic For Cotton Belt Railroad
Cause of deathCardiac Arrest
FatherJohann Georg BOTT , M (1821-1892)
MotherKatharina Philippine GRUBER , F (1831-1887)
BirthAug 31, 1878, Mississippi
DeathMay 22, 1960, Tyler, Smith County, Texas Age: 81
BurialMay 24, 1960, Oakwood Cemetery, Tyler, Smith County, Texas
Cause of deathCongestive Heart Failure
FatherAbner B. KIRK , M (1831-1912)
MotherRachel ARLEDGE , F (1839-1906)
MarriageDec 29, 1904, Tyler, Smith County, Texas
ChildrenBaby Boy (Died as Child), M (1905-1906)
Questions notes for Gustav BOTT
Is this he? This record does not have an age.
New York City Immigrants (Austria, Galicia, Poland), 1891
about G. Bott
Name: G. Bott
Ship: La Normandie
Arrival Date: August 31, 1891
Ship number: 1332
Line number: 634
Roll Number: 574
New York City Immigrants (Austria, Galicia, Poland), 1891
about Guiseppe Bott
Name: Guiseppe Bott
Ship: La Champagne
Arrival Date: October 19, 1891
Ship number: 1616
Line number: 695
Roll Number: 578
Name Origin Panel
Gustav Bott Germany 587
All names here are inscribed and available for viewing on The American Immigrant Wall of Honor at Ellis Island unless they are listed as "to be inscribed".
Visa to immigrate from Germany to U.S. dated August 3, 1891. Believed to have arrived at Port of New York the week of Oct. 20, 1891.
U.S. Citizenship granted 20 Dec 1898, Palestine, Anderson County, Texas. In the declaration papers found in the County Courthouse in Palestine, Texas, Gustav stated that he arrived at the Port of New York the week of October 20, 1891.
However, the 1930 Census states arrival to USA was 1893. Which is correct 1891 or 1893?
The obituary has been scanned and will be transcribed at a later date and placed in this section. Click on the photo icon next to the individuals name to view the scanned obituary.
Stories, Articles and Biographies
THE BOTT FAMILIES
of Tyler, Smith County, Texas
Prepared by Jerry F. Bott
745 Malcolm Ave.
Los Angeles, CA. 90024
May 17, 1988
Note: additions, corrections and modifications were made by Jeff L. Bott on June 4, 2008
THE DISCOVERY OF DISTANT RELATIVES
On one of my visits to my grandfather, Gustav Bott, in the 1960's, I pressed him for information on any relatives still in Germany. He told me about Frau Frohlich, possibly the daughter of a niece, who lived in Wiesbaden. He also mentioned an Emil Bott in Niederauroff but did not know whether he was still alive. I did not know how to write Emil Bott but got the address of Frau Frohlich and wrote her. It turned out that she was sick and confined to an iron lung machine, but her husband sent me a copy of the marriage certificate for Johann Bott and his wife.
In 1968 my friend, Rolf Gross, went to Germany to see his parents and stopped by Niederauroff and Idstein during his trip. He talked to the minister of the little church in the village and even took a look at the church records that had a number of Bott’s listed. The owner of an old mill named "Bott Muhle" was away in Texas taking flight training, but Rolf was told that he was adopted and not part of the Bott Family. On the basis of this success it was arranged that Rolf's father, Dr. Ulrich Gross would go back to the church and go through the records more systematically. Dr. Gross had done a lot of genealogical research and was experienced in reading the old German script. One set of church records led him to another so that he went to several churches around Niederauroff. He also located a woman with a manuscript about the Bott family that had been written by her husband many years earlier. Dr. Gross's research efforts are the source of our present knowledge of the antecedents of Gustav Bott.
In 1975, I went to Germany for a scientific conference and went to Niederauroff on the way. I arrived in Idstein on Saturday night and drove the 1 or 2 kilometers to Niederauroff the next morning. No one was at the church, which was a little surprising for a Sunday morning, but I did find the cemetery and walked around it. It was very interesting, but I did not find any relatives. Several years went by and my brother, Jeff, went to Europe with his wife and some friends. I had sent him a description of how to get there, but was surprised to get a long distance telephone call from him one Saturday night. He had found a woman named Hilde Bott Robscheit who might be a distant relative. He was going back to see her the next day and wanted to confirm the relationship from my records. I did find her; she was the daughter of the same Emil Bott mentioned by my grandfather many years earlier. Jeff had a nice visit with her with the help of a translator. Hilde has a daughter, Eva, who does speak English, and he met her the next day. Hilde even lives in the same house built by my Great-grandfather Johann Georg Bott in 1849. This was the first visit of the American Bott’s with the German Bott’s in our direct lineage.
The next visit came about a year later when Leanne, Jeff's daughter, went to Europe to ski in the Alps at Christmas of 1985. She went to Niederauroff and stayed with the Robscheit’s and met Eva. Again in 1987 my daughter, Sarah, spent the summer in Europe and went to see them for one day. That day turned out to be Hilde's birthday so that her two sisters were also there. They also live in Niederauroff. Hilde says that my grandfather, Gustav, corresponded with them (primarily with her father, Emil Bott) until the latter part of the 1960's. Gustav died Jan. 11, 1969 at the age of 94. He wrote them in German although he must have been a little rusty after all those years.
I am sure that my grandfather is happy that we found a few of his and our relatives in Niederauroff. There are probably more relatives living in some of the other small villages around Niederauroff or, more likely, in nearby cities such as Wiesbaden. Although Frau Frohlich is most likely dead, she did have children.
THE GERMAN ORIGINS OF THE BOTT FAMILY
The earliest Bott listed in the church records is Gebhard Bott who came to Niederems from Worsdorf around 1642. Bott is not a typical German name and may have originated elsewhere. Gustav Bott claimed that the Bott’s had not always lived in Germany but had come there sometime earlier. In Canterberry Cathedral in England a chapel in the basement is dedicated to the Huguenot refugees from France, and a list of the first one hundred or so refugees contains the name, Bott. Many Bott families in the United States claim decadency from an English ancestor. Perhaps, our ancestor chose to seek safety among the Protestants to the east of France instead of toward the west. During the first part of the seventeenth century the 30 Years War disrupted life all through that part of Europe, and many people migrated seeking safety from the fighting and destruction. In any case our Gerhard Bott arrived in Niederems in 1642 and settled into the community. This area was spared during the 30 Years War, and many buildings in the nearby small town of Idstein date from the beginning of the 17th Century.
The Bott families Lived in Niederems and, later, in Niederauroff until the late 19th century. Some of the related families (Robscheit) still live there. According to the church records, they farmed and worked as blacksmiths in the several small villages near Niederauroff. In the 1880's Carl August Bott and Carl Wilhelm Bott, two sons of Johann Georg Bott, emigrated to the United States. Their mother had died and their father had remarried. Their half-brother, Gustav, followed them in 1891 and went to Texas intending to join Carl Wilhelm.
Johann Georg Bott was born Dec. 19, 1821 in Niederauroff; his parents were Johann Philip Bott and Maria Katharina Pfuhl Bott. He married Susanne Catharina Maria Christ Apr 9, 1849 in Worsdorf. After her death on Jan. 13, 1857 in Niederauroff he married Katharina Philippine Gruber on Jan. 3, 1858 in Ehrenbach. Katharina Philippine Gruber was born on Feb 20, 1831 in Ehrenbach, the daughter of Johann Peter Gruber and Maria Catharine Gerhard Gruber. Johann Georg built a house in Niederauroff in 1849 that is still in use in 1988. Hilde Robscheit, who lives there with her husband Martin, is a direct descendent of Johann Georg. Johann Georg was a blacksmith and also a Burgermeister of Niederauroff; although the duties of the latter must not have been too time consuming since the village was so small. Katharina, his second wife, died on May 27, 1887 in Niederauroff; he was 65 at this time. His son Gustav was 12 and another son, Adolf, was 9. The local church records do not list another marriage, but much later Gustav would refer to a stepmother. Johann Georg advised his young son, Gustav, to go to America since he thought the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 would not be the last one. Johann Georg died on Jan. 1, 1892 in Niederauroff shortly after Gustav had emigrated to America.
Carl August Bott, born Aug. 1, 1849 in Niederauroff, emigrated to Dayton, Ohio, where he owned a company connected in some way to the steel business. He married Elise Streckfuss in 1873 in Laudenbach/Baden, but they had no children.
Carl Wilhelm Bott was born Jan. 1, 1854 in Niederauroff. He married Josefa “Josphine” Strack on Jan. 16, 1885 in Palestine, Texas. Upon arrival in this country he changed his name slightly to William Carl Bott. He and his family were living in East Texas about the time that Gustav was planning his trip to this country. However, he developed TB and moved to Arizona before Gustav arrived. He had two boys, but only one, George Henry Bott, born in Apr. 16, 1893, survived childhood. George Henry Bott had a family of 5 children.
Carl August and Carl Wilhelm came to the United States in the 1880's, but we don't know the exact year. Other relatives may also have come; Gustav mentioned having a cousin in Indianapolis. It is curious that the brothers did not choose to live in the same place.
CARL WILHELM BOTT FAMILY
I. Carl Wilhelm Bott was born Jan. 1, 1854 in Niederauroff. He married Josefa “Josphine” Strack on Jan. 16, 1885 in Palestine, Texas. His parents were Johann Georg Bott and Susanne Catharina Maria Christ.
A. George Henry Bott was born Apr. 16, 1893 (possibly in Palestine, Anderson County, Texas or in Arizona) and married Clara Ethyl Dickinson on Dec. 22, 1914 in Stanford, Anderson County, Texas. He taught school on an Indian reservation for many years, was a miner, prospected and had many mining claims. He was still living in Tucson, Arizona in 1985 at the age of 92. In the spring of that year he walked 8 miles for the March of Dimes Walkathon.
1. George Dickinson Bott married Katherine Dwyer on Jan. 12, 1949 Willcox, Cochise County, Arizona.
2. Carl Harold Bott was born about Jan. 11, 1920 and married Lauralea “Laura” Haby in Jun. 1949. He died Oct. 1, 1980 in Safford, Graham County, Arizona at the age of 60.
3. Evelyn Ethel Bott married William Vernon Tuck on Sept. 24, 1943. In 1985 she lived in Cedar Edge, Colorado.
4. Dale Rex Bott was born Jun 16, 1930 in Minot, Ward County, North Dakota and married Margo J. Merrill on Jan. 1, 1954. He lived in Medford, Oregon in 1985.
5. John Leonard Bott was born Jan. 15, 1936 in Pocatello, Bannock County, Idaho and lived in Tucson in 1985.
DESCENDENTS OF HENRIETTE ELISABETH BOTT
II. Henriette Elisabeth Bott was born April 23, 1859 in Niederauroff and married in Niederauroff on Oct. 30, 1881, Phillip Heinrich Bott (born Dec. 21, 1864 in Niederauroff died Feb 12, 1948 in Niederauroff); she died Nov. 27, 1944 in Niederauroff. Her parents were Johann Georg Bott and Katharina Philippine Gruber. Phillip Heinrich Bott was the son of Philipp Carl Bott (1828-1888) and Johannette Philippne Kern. Phillip Heinrich Bott was the first cousin of Henrietta.
A. Emil Bott born June 16, 1889 in Niederauroff and married Katharina Schmidt Feb. 25, 1922 in Niederauroff.
1. Lina Bott, born June 29, 1922 in Niederauroff, married Rudolf Bahr
2. Hilde Lotte Bott born, Aug 12, 1923 in Niederauroff, married Martin Robscheit
a. Eva Robscheit
3. Wilma Ilse Bott born, June 24, 1925 in Niederauroff, married Walter Fiebig, born Nov. 17, 1924 in Gernrode/Harz, Germany; they married Nov. 10, 1946 in Oberauroff, Germany.
GUSTAV BOTT AND EMMA LUCILLE KIRK
Gustav Bott was born Sept. I, 1874 in Niederauroff, Germany and was the son of Johann Georg Bott and Katharina Philippine Gruber Bott. Johann was 52 years old at the time and Katharina was 43. This was the second marriage for Johann; his first wife was Susanne Catharina Maria Christ and she died Jan. 13, 1857 in Niederauroff. He then remarried Jan. 3, 1858 to Katharina Philippine Gruber. Gustav had several half-brothers and half-sisters as well as a brother and sister so it was not a small family.
In the early 1880's his two half-brothers emigrated to America. They may have come together, but did not stay together. Carl August went to Dayton, Ohio, and Carl Wilhelm settled in East Texas. Both states had fairly large German communities. Perhaps they had other relatives or friends who had already gone or perhaps they had just read about America.
About 1891, Gustav decided to join his two half-brothers in the United States. His father, Johann Georg, thought that there would be another war and that the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 would not be the last. Also, Gustav's mother had died in 1887. There is no third marriage listed in the church records for Johann Georg, but Gustav spoke many years later of a stepmother so we don't know exactly what the situation was. Gustav told his grandson that he went to Texas to join Carl Wilhelm Bott instead of Carl August because he had suffered frostbitten ears one cold winter in Germany and wanted a warmer climate than Ohio. Before Gustav arrived, however, Carl Wilhelm developed TB and moved to Arizona. Gustav went to Texas anyway and lived in Palestine, Texas, where there were other German families. Perhaps his half-brother had left word that he was coming.
Gustav lived with a family near Palestine and worked on their farm for 50 cents/day. His son, Fred Bott, took him back to Palestine to see members of this family as long as 50 years after he had left. Palestine had railroad repair shops that bought timber from Gustav, and after some years he decided to go to work for the railroad. It involved some traveling and he went as far south as San Antonio. On one of his trips, he stopped in Tyler, Texas and met Emma Lucille Kirk whose mother and father operated a boarding house at 326 East Line Street not too far from the train depot. He must have liked her Cooking for he stayed and went to work in the Tyler railroad shops.
Gustav and Emma Lucille were married on Dec. 29, 1904 in Tyler, Smith County, Texas and bought a house at 1210 Holmes Avenue. He was 30 and she was 26. Her parents were Abner Kirk and Rachel Arledge Kirk. Emma Lucille was born on Aug. 31, 1878 in Jasper County, Mississippi but came to Texas in 1880 with her parents when still a baby. Abner Kirk had been a farmer but was now 73 years old and not very active. Emma had probably done most of the work since she was the only child still at home; her oldest sister, Anna Jane Kirk, was 44 years old by then. After Gustav and Emma moved onto Holmes Avenue, the Kirks came to live with them. However, Rachel Kirk only lived a short time and died Jun. 17, 1906. Abner Kirk lived part of the time with them and part of the time with other sons and daughters until his death in Oct. 25, 1912. Fred Bott would recall many years later that his father, Gustav, made him dig up the whole back yard looking for the gold coins which Abner had supposedly buried. They were never found and may have never existed.
Gustav worked in the railroad shops, repairing steam locomotives and refurbishing boxcars until the early 1920's when there was a long railroad strike that eventually failed. Gustav never went back to work in the shops after the strike but worked for himself doing mechanical repairs for people. He specialized in repairing and selling wood stoves and also had a large garden, chickens, and a cow. The garden was always beautifully kept; it was more like a German garden than a Texas garden. He kept chickens until the middle 1950's when he was close to 80 years old. Several large pecan trees produced enough pecans to "pay the property taxes". Their life on Holmes Ave. probably had more similarities to life in Niederauroff than to the life of their children and grandchildren.
In the early 1930's he started working for the Tyler Commercial College on College Street. He was in charge of the physical plant including the boiler and heating system. His sons, Fred and Edward, helped with the painting and the general maintenance. Both eventually attended the college, which had a two-year Course in business.
He maintained contacts with his family in Germany until the last several years of his life writing letters to Frau Frohlich, a "niece" in Wiesbaden and to Emil Bott in Niederauroff. He used to tell us about the many fruit trees that he had planted for his father before he had left home. He was proud that the fruit trees had been so valuable to his relatives during the several periods of hard times; during WWI, the 1920's, the depression, and then again after WWII. In fact two of the apple trees were still standing in 1985 when his grandson, Jeff Bott, visited Niederauroff. He was proud of his heritage and more than once reminded me that Germany had a social security system even before he left. By a coincidence, he was the first person in Tyler, Texas to qualify for social security benefits after the passage of the Social Security Act.
Both Gustav and Emma were religious and helped form the Queen St. Baptist Church. They did not smoke or drink of course, and they did not permit it in their house. Gustav liked to talk and had opinions about everything. It was always hard to get into the conversation or to change the topic under discussion. He was critical of people and rather stern in his judgments. He had a great memory even in his old age for the smallest detail concerning the house and village of his youth. He and Emma both valued education and encouraged it for their children and grandchildren.
Emma was a quiet, hard-working woman. She had long blond hair and was a beautiful woman in her younger years. In contrast to the stern nature of Gustav, she showed loving affections and always had a nice smile and a funny little laugh. She lived to be 81 and died on May 22, 1960 in Tyler, Texas. Gustav lived to be 94 and died on Jan. 11, 1969 in Tyler, Texas. They are both buried in Oakwood Cemetery, Tyler in the same plot with their two babies and her parents.
The children of Gustav and Emma Bott are as follows:
1. Winnie Belle (b. Apr. 14, 1907; d. Feb. 16, 2001) m. William Alonzo Moore (b. Feb. 17, 1894; d. Dec. 18, 2003)
2. Katherine Lucille (b. Jul 15, 1909; d. Oct. 23, 1994) m. A. B. Williams
3. Fred Lewis (b. Sep 28, 1910 d. Dec. 10, 1976) m. Mattie Dock Coulter
4. Edward Emil/Emmanuel (b. Jul 11, 1912; d. Dec. 27, 1991)
5. Johnnie Richard (b. Nov 1913; d. Jul. 9, 1994) m. Helen Adams (b. Mar 16, 1921; d. Dec. 31, 1989)
6. Mamie Gussie (b. Dec. 5, 1915; d. May 11, 1916) age 158 days
7. Virginia Lucille (b. 27 Oct 1919; d. Dec. 14, 1974) m. Julian Curtis Hodge (b. Aug. 19, 1915; d. Jan. 15, 1968)
Funeral Home notes for Emma Lucille (Spouse 1)
Stories, Articles and Biographies
Emma was a very loving person. When I was a small child at age two or three about 1945 or 1946, I was deathly ill. Emma talked my mother into letting her care for me and Emma nursed me back to health. I loved her very much!
By; Jeff L. Bott