OK. Christina and Henry Gehrigs' immigration stories. During her last two past life regressions with Jeroen, Cathy Byrd (as Mom Gehrig) talked about the immigration stories of Christina and Henry Gehrig, how they met in her hometown in Germany and then how they immigrated together on the same passenger ship to New York at the turn of the last century. It's a fine story as far as it goes even if it has little basis in fact. First we'll go over Cathy's account, then we'll go over what I could glean from on-line records and from Jonathan Eig's thoroughly researched book, Luckiest Man The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig, 2005. From Cathy Byrd's past life regression transcripts available on her website www. cathy-byrd. com under Regressions: CBRT.2 (June, 2014) pp.9-13: p.9 Jeroen: So, what is important about this day? Cathy: There is a guy that I like. I see that he wears a black suit. He is 28. Jeroen: What does he look like? Cathy: Thin - not too tall - kind of quiet. Jeroen: What do you like about him? Cathy: He's older, adventurous, a business man. Jeroen: Does he live close to you? Cathy: Yeah. Jeroen: In the same city? Cathy: Yeah. Jeroen: What does the city feel like? Does it pretty big or average size? Cathy: It's kind of a small town. It's not a big city, but it has a downtown with shops. Jeroen: Does he live in the town? Cathy: Yeah, his family owns a shop. Jeroen: What kind of a shop? Cathy: A hardware store with tools. Jeroen: Is he interested in you too? Does he like you? Cathy: Yeah. He wants to move away too. Jeroen: That's nice. Do you guys know where you want to go? Cathy: To America. Jeroen: What is the country right now? What do you call the country? Cathy: Feels like Europe - like Northern Germany. . . . p.11-12 Cathy: I think we'll probably get married. Cathy: . . . We just got to America too. Jeroen: You did. So, there's a lot going on in your life. Cathy: We have to find a house. Jeroen: Did you find a house already? Cathy: We're looking. We just got here. Jeroen: So, where are you staying while you're looking? Cathy: Just like a family . . . has room. . . . Jeroen: Is this part of your family? Cathy: No, just a family that we met. . . . Jeroen: Now how was the journey over? Cathy: It was a long ride. We had to sleep on the boat - on the top of the boat. Jeroen: What do you mean on top of the boat? Cathy: Like up on deck. Jeroen: Really. It must have been cold? Cathy: Yeah. There was black steam coming out of the ship. Jeroen: About how long did it take? Cathy: 14 days. Jeroen: That's quite long, isn't it? Cathy: Yeah, it was a long trip. We weren't able to take a shower. Jeroen: Was it a crowded boat? Cathy: It was crowded. . . . Jeroen: How did you feel when you arrived at your destination? Cathy: Very relieved. p.13 Jeroen: To get off the boat? Cathy: Yeah. Had to sign in. Jeroen: Sign in? When you got off the boat you mean? Cathy: Yeah. Jeroen: What did that feel like? Cathy: It felt a little rushed. Jeroen: Busy? Cathy: Yeah, very busy with people from all over. Jeroen: What did the signing in entail? Did they just want your name or did they ask for medical information? Cathy: They wanted your name and your birthday and where you're from. Jeroen: Were there doctors? Like some people would get taken to the side because they didn't look healthy? Cathy: No, they didn't ask us for that. Jeroen: Did they tell you where to go? Give you any advice? Or they just wanted your information and then figure it out yourself? Cathy: Yeah, we just went first night and just found a place to stay. We didn't have a lot of money with us. We just decided to stay in New York. . . . CBRT.3 (November, 2014) p.7: p.7 Jeroen: Did you miss Germany? Cathy: A little bit, but I never had the time or the money to go over there. Jeroen: What do you miss about it? Cathy: Miss the scenery - family. Jeroen: Are you from a small town or a city? Cathy: Small town - not a big city, but there were some shops and things. Jeroen: Did you and your husband meet in the States or in Germany? Cathy: I knew his family. Jeroen: Were you in the same area? Cathy: Yeah. Jeroen: When did you decide to get married? Cathy: I think he was in the States and he came back. Jeroen: So you guys knew each other before you left? Cathy: Yeah. Jeroen: Did you date at all? Cathy: Not earlier, but maybe at the time he came back. He came back to see family. We have family together, like cousins or something. We're not related, but we went to family things together. Jeroen: Were you in love with him? Cathy: I was kind of ready for change and he knew how to get by in America. . . . Just to be clear, Cathy, in her third regression with Jeroen, has Henry returning to Germany from America sometime in the 1890s, meeting Christina in her hometown, where apparently Henry Gehrig's family also lived or at least had moved to and started a hardware shop while Henry was away in America. There is only one record from which one might create a story that Henry Gehrig returned to Germany, to Christina's hometown in Schleswig-Holstein (state in northern Germany bordering Denmark), met and fell in love with Christina, with the two of them deciding to head back to America together, unmarried, aboard the same ship. That would be in Mom Gehrig's March 12, 1954 obituary where the article briefly mentions that Christina was a native of Denmark and came to America with her future husband Henry Gehrig at the turn of the (last) century. That's it. The Gehrigs really never talked about their past lives in Germany, and anything we can know is based on genealogical and immigration records which, admittedly, aren't always as complete as we'd like them to be, especially before 1897 (when a fire at Ellis Island destroyed tens of thousands of immigration records). According to the records, Henry Gehrig, born 1867, immigrated to America Oct 1, 1887 (New York State Naturalization Records 1794-1940) as he declared to NY State immigration and naturalization authorities, April 30, 1903. He first went to Chicago in 1887 where he tried to make a go of it before moving to New York City sometime thereafter. Jonathan Eig's research goes much deeper. According to Jonathan Eig (Luckiest Man, 2005, Chapter 1, The Survivor, searchable via books.google.com), Henry Gehrig was born March 12, 1867 in Adelsheim, a small town in the Neckar Odenwald Kreis, in the old state of Baden (which would ally itself with Prussia after the Austro-Prussian war of 1866) (Baden-Wurttemberg is a modern state in southwestern Germany put together after WW2). Henry Gehrig was the 7th of 9 children and born into a very poor family. Growing up in Adelsheim, hundreds of miles south of Schleswig-Holstein, Henry trained as an ornamental metal worker. Christina Gehrig (nee Fack or Facke) was born in 1881 or 1882 in Wilster, Holstein (Schleswig-Holstein) about 30 miles northwest of Hamburg, Germany. When she turned 18 she bought a third-class (steerage) ticket for New York aboard the Hamburg-America line's passenger ship, Pennsylvania. Ellis Island passenger records list her name as "Christine Fack" (searchable at Ellis Island passenger records), and Hamburg-America passenger ship records of the Pennsylvania's voyage (departed Hamburg May 13, 1900 arrived New York, May 25, 1900) confirm the Ellis Island record, listing her as Christine Fack, age 18, from Wilster, Holstein. US census records from 1910 and 1920 list Christina Gehrig's year of immigration as 1900, listing her country of origin as Germany, her ethnic origin and native tongue as German. (Of course during and after WW1 and WW2 it became a little inconvenient to say you were from Germany, so, if you happened to have been born in 19th century Schleswig-Holstein, a contested part of Germany (contested between Denmark, Prussia, and Austria), Denmark would suffice. For completeness, ancestry . com has a record of a "Christina Facke" born about 1880 in Germany, departing Bremen, Germany, and arriving in New York November 20, 1897, aboard a passenger ship Karlsruhe. Sorry for the minutia, but now I need to get to the point. Did Henry and Christina travel to America together aboard the same passenger ship? Not that any record would indicate. Passenger ships arriving in New York from Germany typically carried 2000-2700 passengers, the bulk of which were third-class steerage ticket holders. When they got to the Hoboken, NJ piers, first and second class ticket holders (about 300 passengers total) were allowed to continue on to their final destinations. Third-class ticket holders were divided up into groups of 30 and carried by barge one group at a time the mile and a half down the Hudson River to Ellis Island for processing. Third class ticket holders, which from Cathy Byrd's regression description, Christina (and Henry) most certainly would have been, typically spent 3-5 hours on Ellis Island, waiting in crowded lines, being interviewed and inspected for trachoma (a very contagious eye-disease), and other diseases, during hurried medical exams (In 1905, for example, Ellis Island processed 800,000 newly arrived third class passengers). If Henry and Christina traveled together, you'd think they'd have been listed on the same group manifest. But they weren't, probably because they didn't travel together. At some point after her arrival, Mom Gehrig, through fellow Germans she had met on the boat over or even at Ellis Island, found her way to the German-speaking section of New York City, to the Yorkville tenement section on the east side of Manhattan in the east 90s, barely considered to be part of NYC at the time. She apparently met and married Henry Gehrig there in the Yorkville tenements of NYC,(married November 27, 1901) in a hurried marriage (Mom Gehrig mentioned during an interview at her son's "elopement" with Eleanor Twitchell, Sept 29, 1933, that she and Henry Gehrig had also "eloped").