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BeitragVerfasst: So 20. Jan 2008, 22:53 
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Hi
I am researching my family's history and would be extremely grateful for any help from experts in the manufacture of Accordions in Germany.
My great grandfather Georg BECKER the son of Philip BECKER emigrated from his native Germany in the 1850's and settled in Derby England where he became known as George BAKER. He went in to business in Derby as a musician and Accordion maker.
I need to find George's German town of birth in the mid 1830's
To begin my search, do you have any suggestions relative to a likely centre of Accordion manufacture in Germany where George might have learnt the skill of instrument manufacture?
Many thanks in anticipation of your help.
Best regards
Twizzlad


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BeitragVerfasst: Mo 21. Jan 2008, 21:19 
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Geigenbaumeister

Registriert: Do 02. Feb 2006, 11:16
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Wohnort: Markneukirchen
Hi Twizzlad,

I am only a violin maker but I researched a little for you in my library. So I found out:

There were a few places of accordian making in Germany. But if you are sure that Georg Becker went in the 1850's from Germany to Derby we can exclude some of them because the accordion production was founded there after 1860. Here are the possible places I found:

In 1834 Carl Friedrich Uhlig made his first instrument „Deutsche Konzertina“ in Chemnitz, but I think only in a small workshop.

A little after 1836 Heinrich Wagner began to make "Deutsche Harmonika" in Gera. He had trainees and in 1852 his firm had about 100 workers.

In Magdeburg Friedrich Gessner founded a factory in 1845. It seems so that it was a prospering company - in 1855 they had 150 workers.

In 1852 Adolph Herold brought the making fo accordions to Klingenthal. There was since the 1830's a large production of mouth organs and very quickly the accordion making grew to an importend centre in Germany.

All the other places came later if I know right.

So you could conentrate on Gera, Magedeburg and Klingenthal.

Sincerely

Udo


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BeitragVerfasst: Di 22. Jan 2008, 11:25 
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Hi Udo
Many thanks for your research and advice.
I shall now search for Georg's birth or marriage in the districts you have identified.
Best regards and have a splendid 2008.
Twizzlad


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BeitragVerfasst: Di 22. Jan 2008, 14:24 
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Geigenbaumeister

Registriert: Do 02. Feb 2006, 11:16
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Hi Twizzlad,

I did a look into the white pages and found 15 families with name Becker in Gera and 179 Becker in Magdeburg and no Becker in Klingenthal. The last result I assumed because Klingenthal is in our neighborhood.

Gera has about 102.000 inhabitants, Magdeburg about 220.000. So I would start my research in Magedeburg because there seems to be a concentration and consequently a large history of the name Becker.

Best greetings

Udo


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BeitragVerfasst: Mi 23. Jan 2008, 19:02 
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Hi Udo
Good advice, well made.
Wish me luck, I think I am going to need it
Many thanks again.
Best regards
Twizzlad


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BeitragVerfasst: Sa 28. Mai 2011, 9:12 
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Hi, me would interest what you could find out abut this Accordion builder up to now.

The situation about German builders is correctly shown to you.
But remember that he also my have been trained in Vienna. German Empire must not mean today Boarders.
There ware a close relationship between Gera and Vienna if we talk about the early Accordions.
Relatives of Vienna Accordion builders travel to Gera and other places, finally settling there and starting to build Accordions.

Heinrich Wagner learned building accordions in Vienna. From 1836 on he soled Instruments built in Vienna by his brother in low, but soon he stated with his own production.
And as i understand the whole circumstance because there was a great demand of this new type of instruments the knowledge spread very fast and a lot of other instrument makers or organ builders my have undertaken to copy or improve this type of instruments.
And all over Europe and even in America by 1850 Instruments with free reeds ware built. Not all of this builders did survive or become popular enough to be known today. It also war very common that this People engaging in building instruments did stay for some time in different places of Europe to learn and improve knowledge and skills. Vienna was practically a major Place to build up once reputation.

The way his instruments ware built may tell more abut where he was trained.

And finally it is not of much of importance of witch nationality he was, even we know that originally German speaking people all over Europe or the western world even in Russia my have been the one who spread this new Technology a lot.

Going back 200 hundred Years it becomes very difficult in many situation to find out the real fakes about family history, and this is even more difficult if a Family name is very widely spread as BEAKER is. my name is not very Common but little do i know about relatives living in around 1800. A bit more is known about the House i still live in, and its roots go further back and one cant tell when it was built the first time. I Fond roman foundation fragments, but what all this helps? - relay nothing aren't we all routing back to the same ?

Still pleas tell as what you fund out, Johann Pascher


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BeitragVerfasst: Mo 30. Mai 2011, 10:43 
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Dear Johann
Many thanks for your interest and helpful advice. Apologies for not replying in the German language.
Research to establish the German birthplace of great grandfather Georg BECKER (aka BAKER in England) is proving a long and difficult journey.
I am currently in the process of trying to access the state and parish birth and marriage records held in archives at KUSEL, PFALZ.
The best leads found so far suggest that Georg might have been born at ALTENGLAN, PFALZ (then Bayern) in 1834 and married Catherina BRAUN in 1850.
Georg was a musician who migrated with Catherina to England shortly after their marriage. It would appear that Georg learnt the skill of Accordion making after arrival in England from fellow German migrant Augustus Dorn who was making Accordions in DERBY, England by the time of his marriage in 1849. Augustus Dorn would leave DERBY to live in MANCHESTER between 1861 and 1871. Georg took over the Accordion manufacturing business in DERBY from Augustus. Georg's business would be developed by him in to a general musical instrument dealership and manufacturer including the repair of Accordions and Violins. Unfortunately I have, to date, been unable to find a surviving Accordion made by DORN or BAKER (BECKER) in England.
In conclusion, for the interest of German Musikinstrumenten historians, it would now appear that it was Augustus DORN who learnt the skill of Accordion making in Germany (Augustus birthplace was declared as Germany - town unspecified - in the English censuses) prior to migration to England where he would make instruments in DERBY and MANCHESTER in the second half of the 19th century.
Many thanks again for your communication Johann.
Best regards
Chris


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BeitragVerfasst: Mo 06. Jun 2011, 10:49 
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Registriert: Do 02. Feb 2006, 11:16
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Dear Chris,

in the museum database of instrument makers there I could find Johann DORN, documented from 1847 to 1856 in Vienna, Hauptstraße nach Schönbrunn 45 - as an accordion maker! Should that only be a coincidence?

Unfortunately there are no living dates or relations in the records.

Best regards

Udo


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BeitragVerfasst: Mo 13. Jun 2011, 9:56 
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Registriert: So 20. Jan 2008, 22:23
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Dear Udo
Many thanks for this excellent lead.
There must be a very very strong possibility that Augustus was either the brother or cousin of Johann DORN the manufacturer of Accordians in Vienna (noting that the father of Augustus was Philip DORN).
Although my direct interest is in Georg BECKER (aka BAKER) the successor in Derby England of Augustus DORN, I shall seek confirmation of the DORN family origins.
Thank you again.
Kind regards
Chris


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