Message Boards > Surnames > Bruss
Subject: Seeking Frederick BRUSS: Prussia > NY > Wisconsin
Date: Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Surnames: Bruss Bruce
I am seeking specific European birthplace information for my BRUSS family, and ancestors if at all possible. I also would like to find them in New York before they came to Wisconsin.
Here is what the data I've collected suggests: Freidrich or Frederick BRUSS was born in the early 1800s in Prussia. In the early 1830s, he came to New York with his wife [name unknown] and his son Augustus F. Bruss. It is possible that a son William or Wilhelm also came with the family. He died young, date and location unknown. Two more sons, Martin F. and John were born in New York in the 1833 to 1838 time period.
Family history says that Frederick BRUSS was a sailor on the Atlantic Ocean at some point.
In 1842, the family came to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The tradition in the BRUSS family was that all the sons became sailors in their teenage years and were apprenticed as ship carpenters and caulkers. The 3 sons in fact took up those occupations as adults -- in Wisconsin, Florida and California.
Augustus F. Bruss was born 27 December 1830, in Germany, according to his death certificate in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. In the 1860 and 1870 Census records, he is shown as born in Prussia. In the 1880 Census, he and his parents are recorded as born in Germany.
Thus it seems likely that my BRUSS family came from one of the port cities of northern Prussia that had shipyards. In the late 1850s, the family adopted the English spelling Bruce for the surname.
I would welcome information and advice on how to continue my research for this family Germany/Prussia and in New York. Thank you!