George Mangen Immigrates

According to the 1887 Luxembourg census, George was working as a farm hand in France. I would love to know what led him to this next decision. I had read that the large families didn’t have enough land to divy up in order for each of the siblings to have enough to farm to sustain a family. The younger siblings sold their share to the eldest and would have enough money to move to America. So in 1889, George, then 21, immigrated with his sister, Catherine, 19, to the United States. They first journeyed from Mensdorf, Luxembourg to Rotterdam, Netherlands. They boarded the ship named the Amsterdam and sailed in steerage for 8 days to Castle

Garden in New York where immigration took place before Ellis Island opened. They arrived 1 March 1889 and carried a total of 3 bags. After that, they most likely traveled by train to Chicago and moved into the neighborhood where the German and Luxembourg immigrants settled which was the north side.


I believe that they were the first in the immediate family that immigrated. I do not know if there were any other family or friends they met when they arrived in Chicago. Catherine married the following year.

His naturalization was on 18 October 1894. His witness was Mathias Zeimet which is his brother-in-law, Catherine’s husband. His address in 788 Clybourn Ave which is on the North side of Chicago and close to the St Michaels church which is the German Church in the area.


I don’t know what he did to earn money when he first arrived. There were a lot of farms and the people from Luxembourg were known for celery farming. He probably worked as a laborer.

Chicago World Fair 1893

Some exciting things that happened in Chicago while George was there:

1891- Chicago Symphony Orchestra Inaugural concert

1893 – Field Museum opened

1893 –  World’s Fair. There were life sized replicas of the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria because they were celebrating the 400 year anniversary of Columbus discovering America. There was a moving walkway that took people to the casino. Cream of Wheat and Juicy Fruit gum were introduced. The forerunner to the zipper was demonstrated. The souvenir pressed penny made it’s appearance. The first ferris wheel was debuted at this fair.

1893 – Mayor Carter Harrison assassinated

1894 – Pullman strike

Two more siblings immigrated younger sister Marie, 19,  in 1890 on the ship Obdam. There was another woman her age from the same town listed above her and there were a 10 and 8 year old girls listed under them from Mensdorf all going to Chicago. I wonder if they were all traveling companions. US Census records show that his older brother Peter also immigrated in 1890 but I haven’t found his name on any passenger lists.

The oldest brother, Jacques was still in Luxembourg and living with his parents. This is more evidence that the other sons were selling their share of the farm land and moving to America.

George was getting established in America and next post will cover his marriage and children.

Genealogy Line

George Mangen – Great Grandfather

Henry Mangen – Grandfather

Florence Mangen – Mother



New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1891,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : 28 July 2014), 530 – 18 Feb 1889-25 Mar 1889 > image 328 of 903; citing NARA microfilm publication M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).

Illinois, Northern District Naturalization Index, 1840-1950,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : 20 May 2014), M-520 P. to M-600 Charles, Part A > image 2535 of 5419; citing NARA microfilm publication M1285 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).

Wikimedia Commons contributors, ‘File:Ferris-wheel.jpg’, Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository, 26 February 2018

File:1893 Birds Eye view of Chicago Worlds Columbian Exposition.jpg.” Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository. 22 Feb 2018

Image from Google maps.

New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1891,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : 28 July 2014), 543 – 2 Jan 1890-20 Feb 1890 > image 561 of 823; citing NARA microfilm publication M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).

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