07 September 2012

Joachim Heinrich Christian Friederichs

I recently received the naturalisation papers for Joachim Heinrich Christian Friederichs from the National Archives UK.

He was married to my 3x great aunt Carolina Helena Maria Von Holst and was born in Altona, Holstein, Germany in about 1786.

I've done quite a bit of searching on him and his wife, mainly to see if they ever had children - I can't find a record of any - but was intrigued to know more about him anyway.

Joachim Friederichs and Carolina Von Holst were married on 30 Jan 1834 at St Pancras, London. Friederichs was noted as a widower. I have not found any record of who his previous wife was, but I believe she was not English. I also have no knowledge of whether there were children from the previous marriage - certainly none have turned up in my research.

I was hoping that the naturalisation papers might give me more detailed information on where Friederichs was born in Altona - it seems that the official birth, death and marriage records for that time in Holstein are only found in the church records, which are not centralised anywhere, but you have to go to the individual parishes. Unfortunately, it didn't give me any more details. It did state that Friederichs arrived in England in April 1833, less than a year before he married Carolina.

I was surprised to find that Joachim Friederichs was the inventor of a series of maps called The Circuiteer, one of which can be accessed through the online gallery at the British Library. He drew a series of circles over the maps which allowed people to work out the proper fare for travelling in cabs, to stop the cabbies from swindling people. He published a number of editions - in 1849, 1850, 1851, and also an apparently revised edition in 1862. Interestingly, I have not been able to find record of Friederichs and his wife in England after 1851, and suspect that they may have spent time in Germany, but clearly they, or at least Joachim, must have returned long enough to update the map(s).

I also found that Friederichs had links to Count Lusi (somehow related to the Prussian Ambassador to London with the same title) - he travelled to the Port of London with Count Lusi in 1842, arriving on April 1. The naturalisation papers also state that he wanted to become a British citizen so that he could "prosecute his claims to property as administrator in England of the Late Count Lusi of Berlin."

As for when Joachim and his wife died, I have not found any records. I don't think they died in England, more likely in Germany, possibly Berlin.

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