The Cannon King's Daughter

An unrecorded banishment from Germany's Krupp steel family

Archive for August 2013

Photographic Analysis by Photo Expert Maureen Taylor

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This short presentation movie was made for author David Stroebel by Maureen Taylor, “the nation’s foremost historical detective,”- the Wall Street Journal. She compares two photos of Engelbertha Krupp-his great-grandmother-who is believed by Stroebel to have been banished from Germany’s premier steelmakers, the Krupp dynasty. The first photo was taken in Essen, Germany in 1868 and the other in Jersey City, New Jersey, USA in 1906. Watch with stunning accuracy how visual recognition software reveals the two women are one in the same supporting the Krup Dynasty banishment theory author David Stroebel has asserted regarding his great-grandmother.


Written by Dave Stroebel

August 16, 2013 at 8:07 pm

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Explanation for same year of birth for Friedrich and Engelbertha Krupp

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This topic has been a hot one indeed. Thanks for noticing and caring enough to inquire further. 

Since I have not yet proven that Friedrich was born any earlier/later than what his church record states (1854) I left it as is. On the other hand, I suspected that Engelbertha was born before Friedrich because in the group photograph (Krupp family with friends) that was analyzed by Maureen Taylor she is obviously taller than her brother, Friedrich, leading one to believe she has had more time to grow, meaning she was born before Friedrich was. US Census records and her marriage record consistently say she was born on June 13th, but  she also gave three different years that she was born. On documents I found, Engelbertha gave three different years that she was born: 1850, 1852 and 1854.

In closing, something you as readers I’m sure are aware of is that you do not jump past the author for answers and contact any of my sources that worked with me. That is not only unprofessional, it is inconsiderate.

Please do not contact my sources as they have no detailed information about this photo. You may email the author at
David Stroebel

Written by Dave Stroebel

August 4, 2013 at 5:30 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

der Spiegel Krupp banishment story translation

leave a comment »; login August 2nd, 2013

Alleged Daughter of Krupp Dynasty: The mysterious Engelbertha
Marc Pritzke, from Ocean Township, New Jersey

While doing research on his genealogy, U.S. citizen David Stroebel made an astounding discovery: Supposedly, his great-grandmother Engelbertha was the daughter of industrial magnate Alfred Krupp. The New Jersey historian fights for the heritage worth billions – in vain.

Berthold Beitz’ death has been recognized even in the state of New Jersey, in the sleepy little town named Ocean Township. “Germany has lost an icon”, David Stroebel says about the ThyssenKrupp-patriarch. “I wish to express my deepest condolences to the family.”

One week earlier: Stroebel, age 50, sits at the dining table of his bright house. All around him photographs, books and documents, Facsimiles of old genealogical and death certificates, yellowed family pictures, the ticket for a transatlantic passage on a ship, dating from 1883.

To Stroebel, who works as a historian for the local Veterans Service Office, these documents symbolize a very personal relationship to Berthold Beitz. Or rather: A very personal relationship to the long and often dramatic history of the Krupp dynasty whose heritage Beitz administrated for 50 years.

“My great-grandmother was a Krupp”, Stroebel says pointing at the portrait of an elderly lady with a lace collar who looks sternly at the camera. “Engelbertha Krupp.”

Engelbertha Krupp? Even experts in Krupp history will never have heard that name. For a reason: Said great-grandmother, Stroebel says, was a sister of former head of the firm Friedrich Alfred Krupp who was repudiated, disinherited and erased from all registers. Thus, we know Friedrich Alfred Krupp as the only child and heir of Alfred Krupp. “When I learnt this”, Stroebel remembers, “I first of all had to sit down.”

A Krupp daughter would question the testate succession

Others will have to sit down as well: The existence of a Krupp daughter would question the testate succession as defended by the Krupp-Stiftung [foundation] in Essen – and it would open a ‘new’, surely unwanted branch of the family.

There are no documents known to him, Ralf Stremmel says to SPIEGEL ONLINE – he is the director of the historical archives of the Krupp foundation – , that would indicate the existence of a daughter. “Also contemporary church books, city registers or newspapers do not indicate the existence of such a person whatsoever.”

Stroebel, however, clings to his thesis which he did not come up with after Beitz’ death but already traces for six years now – the timing [of this article] is a mere coincidence. He bases his thesis on family revelations, hobby genealogy and digital photo analysis. “I do not want the money”, he says. “I only want to restore my great-grandmother’s honour.”

Stroebel admits that his idea is not yet “100% verifiable.” It would still need DNA analyses. But it is not pure invention, either: “This”, he believes, “is one of the greatest stories of all times.”

Stroebel’s story began in 2007 when his aunt Gloria died. After her funeral he started working on a genealogy. The only thing he knew was that his great-grandparents John and Engelbertha (Bertha) Ströbele came to America from Germany in 1883, and that they originated from Essen. The umlaut mark and the last “e” in the family name were omitted as time passed – as happened quite often back then.

By asking relatives and users of the genealogy website he revealed ever more fascinating details. According to Stroebel, John and Engelbertha even worked at the Berlin Palace for Wilhelm I. – John as a bootblack and Bertha as a cook, her speciality supposedly was the omelette.

The most dramatic ‘revelation’, however, came from his distant relative, the then 86 years old Caroline Marchuck: According to her, Bertha’s real name was Engelbertha Krupp. Krupp? “Yes, from the famous steel- and munition manufacturer in Essen.

“Never darken my door again.“

This is how Marchuck told the story: Engelbertha’s father – the merciless Alfred Krupp – disapproved her marriage with the bootblack and therefore disinherited her in 1874 before he repudiated her: “Never darken my door again.” He also had all her entries from all books and registers erased. After that, the young couple first flew to Berlin, later to the United States where Bertha’s origin had been kept secret by her and her husband from now on.

It this made up? Why would any family invent such a wild story and then keep it secret for so many years? It fits well into this theory that the ‘poor’ Ströbeles arrived in the U.S. with some 10,000 Reichsmark – an inexplicable circumstance. Stroebel reasons that the money was the last compensation from the old Krupp.

He finds a photography, a family picture from 1868, to be found in the Krupp foundation’s archives. It shows Alfred Krupp, his wife Bertha, son Friedrich Alfred “and friends.” On the left there is a woman identified as Clara Bruch – spouse to composer Max Bruch, a friend of the family.

But British Bruch-biographer Christopher Fifield questions this: „This woman on the left does not look like Clara Bruch“, Fifield, a renowned music historian, confirms to SPIEGEL ONLINE. Also, the Bruch’s only married in 1880.

So who is this mysterious lady? “Engelbertha”, Stroebel says without hesitation.

He asked Maureen Taylor (the most renowned photo-investigator of the nation, according to Wall Street Journal) to compare the picture with the portrait of his great-grandmother. The photo analyst let a software compare bone structure, eyes, nose, mouth and other factors electronically.

“Many features are very similar”, Taylor summarizes her findings for SPIEGEL ONLINE: Nose, chin, form of the face. “But this does not necessarily mean that both persons are identical. Perhaps they are ‘only’ relatives. Nonetheless she thinks that Stroebel’s theory is a “fascinating case.”

To Stroebel, this is enough evidence. He is also not irritated by the unanswered question of how a person could be erased so perfectly from all registers and photo documentaries: “It is known that there are noticeable gaps in the Krupp family photo books.”

Engelbertha’s heritage would now be worth seven Billion dollars.

Engelbertha’s heritage, Stroebel calculated, would now be worth about seven Billion dollars – not that he would be interested in the money. According to Stroebel it would have changed history immensely if Engelbertha were heir to the company rather than son Friedrich Alfred: “Engelbertha would never have got involved with the Nazis”, he claims.

Last year Stroebel asked the district court of Essen to deal with the issue. Their negative answer: All claims are time-barred anyway. Even if Krupp had a daughter – his last will would have legally disinherited his daughter and made his son sole heir to the company.

Two month ago the Federal Constitutional Court also answered; Stroebel had asked them to decide on the matter: There was “no reason to see things differently from the district court of Essen.”

This is a sentence the Krupp foundation likes to hear since they were sued already in 1997 by Krupp descendants.

Stroebel does not give up. He wrote a book about his great-grandmother: “The Cannon King’s Daughter”. He has founded a charitable endowment in order to finance his further research. He wrote a Wikipedia article about Engelbertha. He gives talks, like the other day, at the Rotary Club.

And he has written to late Berthold Beitz himself, sometime before his death. The letter was returned: “Unknown addressee.”

Written by Dave Stroebel

August 2, 2013 at 3:42 pm

Posted in Uncategorized