Joe Hirsch's Web Page






Matthew Hirsch, Sr.


Our last known ancestor was traced to Heilingenstein, Bayern, Bavaria. Matheo Hirsch who married Margaretha Hosseman had three children, one of which was Jacob Fredrick, our direct line ancestor. Jacob and his wife Marie Roos had five children, namely, Maria Anna, Maria Ursula, Matthew Edward, Jacobus, and Phillipus. All of the children were born in Heiligenstein, Bavaria and christened in St. Sigmund church in Heiligenstein.


On the first of November 1848 Jacobus Hirsch, brother Daniel and their respective familes set sail for New Orleans, Louisiana. The sailing ship SWANTON left Havre, France "with a clean bill of health" and arrived on December 11, 1848. When at sea for twenty seven days, the first case of cholera occurred. The SWANTON arrived December 11th, 1848 having had seventeen deaths of cholera at sea and yet no quarantine had been established in New Orleans. One day later on the 12th of December 1848, cholera broke out in Charity Hospital (New Orleans). The first two cases were a man and woman brought in during the last stage of the disease, being from the SWANTON, which had just arrived from Havre. The next day numerous cases appeared in the houses near the port, and in other parts of the city. Subsequent to January 5th, there were eleven hundred and fifteen deaths (1,115) from cholera in New Orleans. The cholera epidemic of 1848 is contributed to the passengers on the ship SWANTON bringing the disease to America! Daniel died at sea and Jacobus(Jacob) died later from cholera aboard the steamboat sailing from New Orleans that stopped at Indiana en route up the Ohio river. He is buried in Vicksburg, MS. Both families are living in Pigeon TWP in the 1850 census. The consensus is that Daniel and Jacobus are brothers, but absolute proof has not been found. A DNA test is needed.

Our great grandfather Matthew received most of his education in Evansville and at 17 years of age began the blacksmith trade at which he worked in Evansville until 1863. He then moved to Rockport and opened a blacksmith shop which grew into the manufacturing of wagons, buggies, carriages, harnesses, etc. His business was known as Excelsior and was located on Elm Street between 5th and 6th. He married Martha Limberger and had nine children, four that died in infancy.

Joseph Benjamin, the oldest, married Mary Magnelen Artman and removed to St. Louis where they raised their family. He was a telegrapher. Gertrude, not married, was a dressmaker and lived in Rockport. Henry John, not married, was in real estate in St. Louis. Francis Silas married Etta Schlamp and lived in Henderson, KT and was a salesman in men's clothing. Matthew Edward, Jr. married Cecilia Marie Frenchville, lived in Spencer and Perry County and was a book keeper and a dry goods merchant.

You will find below a link to the genealogy files which includes over 15,000 individuals and a photo album of some of our family.

Link to my World Connect site   Hirsch from Bayern to Evansville ( Click the link and enter 245951on Rootsweb Family Trees. Ancestry/Rootsweb had a computer crash and you have to enter the tree #.

I was told genealogy was addictive. Well, I started researching the Hirsch family almost 30 years ago and haven't stopped, so I guess they're right...

When I retired in 1990 we decided to find out something about our heritage. All I knew was that I had some cousins in Evansville, IN so this is how it started. For clues, I looked through my dad's papers and found a sympathy card from when he passed away that had a return address of Ralph Hirsch, Evansville. I got the number from information and called. A lady answered and I asked to speak to Ralph. She said he was deceased and asked who's calling. I told her who I was and she said she was Pauline, Ralph's wife. She knew who I was and invited us to come to Evansville. Pauline had quite a bit of information and she took us to Willard Library. We spent many days in the Library and found a wealth of information: census records, birth records, marriage records, death records, obits(courtsey of Browning), etc. We made additional trips to Evansville visiting cemeteries, County court houses, libraries, Family History centers, also the National archives, etc and that is the source of the information in my file. (No computers or, then, hand compilation.)

Link to photos pix

Link to obituaries OBS

For information regarding this database contact J.G. Hirsch.