Please, help us in improving this page! Photos of Krohn-related places are also welcome.
As can be seen from the links on page Links, for instance, there are Krohns all over the world. The family roots of most of them seem to lead to 18h century northern Germany, where this surname has not been uncommon.
The roots of our family are also in northern Germany, but St Petersburg is the place where the story essentially begins. From there the branches of the family have spread out all over the world in the past two centuries, partly because of their "restless blood", partly through the force of circumstances. Already in St Petersburg the family was very international: Abraham's sons and grandsons moved a lot around Europe the youngest son Constantin also in the Orient and marriages were wed across national borders.
The following is a brief survey of how different parts of the world are connected with (mainly past generations of) the family. We hope that members of the family will provide us further information. (The numbers after the names are codes in the family tree. The number of digits indicates the generation; the individual digits are ordinal numbers within families. For instance, since Friedrich is the third child of Abraham, his code is 3, and his first child Catharina has the code 3.1.)
As for current generations, we have a moderated forum for signs of life from relatives all over the world. Please, tell us about yourself and your families, send us photos and also additional information to these pages! (Logging in that page requires the same id and password as the page "Whole family".)
The forum is not intended for on-going facebook-like discussion a link to the family's facebook page can be found on the left but to complement these pages with communication with a slower tempo. Greetings and other messages can be sent to krohnfamily(at)krohnfamily.org or by using our contact form. We would also be glad to receive stories and other material about past generations to be attached to the "Miscellania" page.
The role of Russia began in the history of the family around 1785, when Abraham moved from Rügen to St Petersburg, and it more or less ended, when Friedrich (23), the son who lived there last, moved permanently to Dresden in 1858. After that, at least Leopold's daughter Ottilie (6.4) and his granddaughter Aino Kallas (6.1.5) lived there for some time.
Abraham himself, and many of his close family, were buried in Wolkowo graveyard in St Petersburg, in a family grave that now is under a busy street. Some buildings from Abraham's time still remain on his old brewery lot.
||Houses that now replace the residences of the Krohn family in the old brewery area in St Petersburg
Abraham and his children had the citizenship of Finland. The explanation for this is as follows. When Abraham moved to Russia, Rügen and Finland were both part of Sweden. From 1809 Finland belonged to Russia as an autonomous Grand Duchy, and Rügen was attached to Prussia in the Congress of Vienna (1815). With Swedish citizenship, Abraham then had the option of choosing Finnish citizenship, which offered some advantages over the Russian one.
The history of the family got more closely connected with Finland, when Leopold (6) married a young girl from Viborg (1834) and moved with his family permanently there in 1844. With the exception of their daughters, their descendants have mostly stayed in Finland.
Another branch that settled in Finland starts with Wilheln Breitenstein (3.1.1), son of Friedrich's daughter Catharina. At the age of two he was sent to foster parents in Finland, where he stayed (see Family branches).
||Kiiskilä in 2007
Tho roots of the family can be traced to Poseritz (Rügen), Richtenberg and Stralsund, an area that now is part of Germany.
Of Abraham's sons, Friedrich (3) moved in 1858 permanently from St Petersburg to Dresden, where he also died. Carl (4), who died young, and August (5), who made an international career as a zoologist, studied medicine in Göttingen. Later in his life, August lived in Hamburg and Bonn.
Of Fiedrich's sons, Alexander (3.4) worked on German farms, studied bothany for some time in Würzburg, and settled down in Dresden with his father. Of daughters, Ida (3.12) married a Silesian baron and state owner, and she died in 1897 in Gieraltowitz, which then belonged to Germany, but is now part of Poland. They have descendants living at least in Germany and Autralia.
Of Leopold's daughters, Adele (6.5) and Emilie (6.3) were married to Germany the latter after her first husband's death but they no longer have descendants living there. The third sister Ottilie (6.4) also moved to Germany after being widowed. Emilie's two daughters were also married to Germany. Aline's (6.3.1) husband was a German doctor, but they divorced. Their descendants are now living in Norway. Ellen's (6.3.2) husband was an estate owner in Hoof in Unterhof. It is not known, if they still have living descendants.
Nicolai's daughter Emily (3.7.2) was married to a German officer and author. They still seem to have descendants in Germany.
||Abraham's childhood home in Poseritz
The earliest connection to Madeira, mentioned in Nicolai's chronicle, is from 1848, when Friedrich's son Friedrich (3.2) was sent there to recover from tuberculosis. After returning back in 1850 he soon passed away at the age of 25.
The next mention of Madeira is from autumn 1835, when Alexander (3.4) came there with August (5), also to recover from lung decease, and Nicolai (3.7) joined them for winter. Alexander was there also in 1858.
During 185759 the three brothers Alexander (3.4). Nicolai (3.7) and Wilhelm (3.11) lived in Madeira. This time it was Wilhelm who was recovering from consumption. In 1859 Nicolai established there an import company of colonial products. A few years later Wilhelm joined him, and the company became a successful producer of madeira wines.
Nicolai moved to England in 1875, and Wilhelm followed him in 1880. The last Krohns living in Madeira were Wilhelm's grandson Raleigh Krohn (184.108.40.206) and his wife Heather, who died there in 2002.
||The Krohn family house in Funchal
Both Nicolai (3.7) and Wilhelm (3.11) moved from Madeira to England, where a number of their descendants are still living.
A significant period in the life of Aino Kallas (6.1.5) is also connected with London. This is the time when his husband was stationed there as an Estonian diplomat. Their son Hillar (220.127.116.11) stayed there until his retirement in Finland.
||Wilhelm and Lizzie Krohn's home in London
In Estonia Abraham had cousins, with whom he was in contact, buying barley, for instance, from them for his brewery. Another early connection was that Friedrich's son Alexander (3.4), studied chemistry in Tartu university for some time, before moving to Germany.
The most significant connection to Estonia arose, when Julius' daughter Aino (6.1.5) was married to an Estonian philologist, who served his young country in a diplomatic career. The time of World War II was fateful for this family. Their daughter Laine (18.104.22.168) was killed by an accidental (?) shot on their own yard in 1941, and the same year their son Sulev (22.214.171.124) chose a suicide instead of being sent as a spy to Finland. When the rest of the family escaped to Sweden in a small boat, Virve's (126.96.36.199) husband stayed in Estonia and was transported to Siberia. After Stalin's death he was able to return to Tallinn, and died there soon after learning that his wife was no longer alive.
||The summer house of Aino and Oskar Kallas in Kassari, Hiiumaa
Abraham's eldest son Andreas (1), who fought Napoleon in Kutuzoff's troups, died unmarried in Vienna in 1834. This is about all that is known of his life after that war.
As told above under Germany, Ida (3.12) lived in Silesia, which is now part of Poland.
The husband of Leopold's daughter Ottilie (6.4) was a Polish-born artillery general, who served in the Russian army in Finland and Russia. During his is retirement years they lived in Warsaw.
Abraham's youngest son Constantin (7) lived in Paris with his Spanish-born wife. They may still have descendants in France, of whom we have no information.
The husband of Friedrich's daughter Catharina (3.1) was Swiss, and they lived in Geneva. They may still have descendants in Switzerland, of whom we have no information.
Nicolai's grandson Ronald (3.7.3) apparently lived in Switzerland, as he died there in Arosa.
August (5) often spent winters in Italy, in Naples and Messina, where he did zoological research on primitive sea life.
Recovery from tuberculosis was one reason to go south from St Petersburg. Around 1851 Friedrich's Alexander (3.4) spent a few winters in Pau and Rome for this reason. Later, his younger brother August (3.9) was sent for the same reason to Venice, where he died in 1855 at the age of 21.
||August's grave in Venice
During Word War II Aino Kallas (6.1.5) fled to Sweden with her family. Her descendants have spread from there to different parts of the world, but some descendants of Virve (188.8.131.52) still live there.
Two of Aline Hackman's (6.3.1) three children died young in Constantinople, but the third has descendants living in Norway.
Two of Wilhelm's sons, Edmund (3.11.2) and Hugo (3.11.4), moved from England to South Africa after World War I. They have descendants still living there, and also at least in Australia, Canada and France.
The family of Aino Kallas' daughter Laine (184.108.40.206) lived in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) after World War II.
||The farmhouse of the Retief family in South Africa
Nowadays some descendants of Nicolai (3.7), Wilhelm (3.11) and Ida (3.12) are living in Australia.
A few members of several family branches have moved to United States and Canada.