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Johann Friedrich Christian MOEWS
Friederike Charlotte SOPKE
Please Note:  There is a circumstantial link here, which consists of equating the parents in the 1848 birth record in Germany (see Source #2 below) with the widow who emigrated to Indianapolis, IN, with her children by 1888 (see Source #3 below).  Considering how rare their names are and that they're from very small villages in a region not heavily populated at the time, the probability is very high that it's the same couple — high enough that I'm willing to make the connection.  Still, it would be desirable to find direct evidence that this is the same couple.

The best evidence we have is in the Indiana marriage record of our subjects' son, August Ferdinand MOEWS (q.v.), whose parents are named there as Johanna (sic) MOEWS & Friederike SOBKE (=SOPKE), and that Friederike MOEWS, "widow of John," shows up with August and the other children in Indianapolis by at least 1888 — and that all seem to have been born in Stolp (see below for discussion of geography).

Please Note Also:  that the children of two different couples are being mixed up by secondary sources.  The key here is the marriage record of our subjects' son, Charles Louis MOEWS, who married Minnie MOEWS.  Their Indiana marriage record names their parents, and while Charles does name our subjects as his parents, Minnie names her parents as Friedrich MOEWS & Johanna MILLER.  Some secondary sources have attached the children of Friedrich & Johanna to our subjects, with the result that Charles Louis appears to have married his sister!  The MOEWS who immigrated to Indianapolis, IN, in the 1880s and '90s were the children of at least two different couples.  Charles Louis undoubtedly married a cousin, but she was definitely not his sister!

Husband:  Johann Friedrich Christian MOEWS
Birth said to be:  ca. 1826
Death said to be (cholera):  1866, Prussia, German Confederaton [now Poland]

"Johanna" is a woman's name, and that spelling is undoubtedly either a recording error or a transcription error in son August's marriage record.

Wife:  Friederike Charlotte SOBKE / SOPKE
Birth:  ca. 1830
Death said to be:  1899, Neu Damerow, Kr. Stolp, Pomerania, Prussia, German Empire [now Poland]
Immigration:  by 1888, in Indianapolis, Marion Co., IN

I don't know the source for the date and place of Friederike's death.  She was in the U.S. as late as 1893, so, did she go back to Germany?  This family seems to have been reasonably affluent, enough so for some of them to have made the crossing more than once (see records for their children), so her return is not unreasonable.

Proven Children — Kr. Stolp, Pomerania, Prussia, German Confederation [now Poland]:
1.  Johann Martin Friedrich MOEWS, b 27 Feb 1848, Gross Dubsow — birth record names both parents, including maiden name of mother
2.  August Ferdinand MOEWS, b. 8 May 1852 — marriage record names both parents, including maiden name of mother
3.  Martin W. MOEWS, b. 5 Apr 1864, Rathsdamnitz — ship's manifest names August as his brother, who is adjacent on the same manifest
4.  Carl / Charles Louis Walter MOEWS, b. 27 Jun 1860/62 — marriage record names both parents, includes only given name of mother
Keywords for search engines:  genealogy; POL, PL, Poland, Polen, Polska, PM, Pomorskie, Powiat Słupsk; USA, US, United States, IN, Indiana 

Geographical Note:

The geographical history of northern continental Europe is exceeding complex.  In as simple an outline as possible…

The parents and children of this family were born in Kr. Stolp, which was then a German kreis (district/county) in the eastern Province of Pomerania, in the Kingdom of Prussia, which was a state of the German Confederation [Deutscher Bund] (1815-1866), which later became the North German Confederation [Norddeutscher Bund] (1867-1871).  The children grew up and emigrated during the period of the German Empire [Deutsches Reich] (1871-1919).

After WWI, the German Empire was reduced to the Weimar Republic [Weimarer Republik] (1919-1933).  The Polish Republic [Rzeczpospolita Polska] was reborn in the east (1919-1939) only to be reconquered and divided by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union during WWII.  After WWII, Poland was reconstituted, first as a Communist nation in 1945, then as a Democratic one in 1989.

Several online family trees have placed County Stolp in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Brandenburg, Germany, but this location is incorrect.  County Stolp is much further east, in the northwestern corner of the Pomeranian Province of Poland, not Germany.
© User: Michiel1972 / Wikimedia Commons File / CC-BY-SA-3.0 / GFDL / Labels added by DGM.

Today's Poland is divided into three administrative levels:  provinces [województwa (sing. województwo)], counties [powiaty (sing. powiat), and comunes or municipalities (comparable to townships or boroughs in the U.S.) [gminy (sing. gmina)].  In English, "województwo" is frequently transliterated "voivodeships," rather than being translated as "province."  "Kr." is the abbreviation for "Kreis," a German civil division that is usually translated as "district," sometimes as "county"; German "landkries" is usually translated, "state."  Powiat is abbreviated "P.," Pomorskie as "PM," and Poland as POL or PL.
English German Polish  Entity Today
Republic of Poland Republik Polen Rzeczpospolita Polska democratic nation and member of the European Union
Kingdom of Prussia Königreich Preußen / Preussen Królestwo Prusy historical region now divided between Germany, Poland, Russia, Lithuania, Denmark, Belgium, the Czech Republic, and Switzerland
Pomerania Pommern Pomorze historical region now divided between German and Poland
Pomeranian Province / Voivodeship Provinz / Woiwodschaft Pommern Województwo Pomorskie province in Poland
County Stolp / Stolp District Landkreis Stolp / Kreis Stolp Powiat Słupsk county in Województwo Pomorskie
  Neu Damerow / Neudamerow Nowa Dąbrowa village in Gmina Potęgowo, P. Słupsk
  Neu Schurow Nowe Skórowo village in Gmina Potęgowo, P. Słupsk
  Groß / Gross Dubsow Dobieszewo town in Gmina Dębnica Kaszubska, P. Słupsk
  Rathsdamnitz [formerly Damnitz] Dębnica Kaszubska village in Gmina Dębnica Kaszubska, P. Słupsk
  Alt Damerow / Altdamerow Stara Dąbrowa village in Gmina Damnica, P. Słupsk
  Varzin Warcino village in Gmina Kępice, P. Słupsk 


1.  Marriage Record:

2.  Germany Births and Baptisms, 1558-1898 (online at familysearch.org):
Name Johann Martin Friedrich Moews
Gender Male
Christening Date 27 Feb 1848
Christening Place Gross Duebsow, Pommern, Prussia
Father's Name Johann Friedrich Christian Moews
Mother's Name Friederike Charlotte Sopke
GS Film Number 559843, 559844

3.  Polk's Indianapolis (Marion County, Ind.) City Directory.  R.L. Polk & Co., Indianapolis, IN (online at Ancestry.com and/or fold3.com):
Year Pg. Name Home Address Others at Same Address (q.v.)  
1887 571 Moews Frederica (wid John) res 20 Oriental Charles (bds), Henry (bds), Martin (bds) A f3
1888 578 Moews Fredericka (wid John) res 20 Oriental Charles (bds), Henry (bds), Herman (bds), Martin (bds) A
1889 547 Moews Friedrike (wid John) h Keystone ave 3 n of Michigan Charles (h), Henry (h), Martin (h), Herman (b) A f3
1890 565 Moews Fredericka (wid John) h Keystone ave 3 n of Michigan Frank (b), Henry (h), Martin (h) A
1891 568 Moews Fredericka (wid John) hws Keystone ave 3 n of Michican Henry F (hws), Frank (bws) A f3
1892 594 Moews Fredericka (wid John) hws Keystone ave 3 n of E Michigan Henry (hws), Martin (bws) A f3
1893 621 Moews Frederika (wid John) h 29 Keystone av close to August, Charles, Henry, Martin A f3
All the young males living with or near Fredericka have been taken to be her sons, but only three are with certainty:  August, Charles, and Martin.  Herman is son of Johann & Johanna (MÜLLER) MOEWS, and Henry appears to be as well. Frank is a wild card here; I can find out almost nothing about him.

4.  Pomeranian Genealogy (online at www.genealoger.com).

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