Private George Hoenig, Company I.
George was born in
Grossumstadt, Darmstadt, Hesse, Germany, May 24, 1845. He left Germany
between 1845 and 1850, and grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
He enrolled with the 26th
Wisconsin Volunteers, Company I, on the 25th day of March 1864. He was
discharged from service July 1865, near Louisville, Kentucky. In his
pension application, (& other documents) he stated that he was born
in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He kept a journal of his military time, like
so many other soldiers in the 26th.
George returned to Milwaukee
after the War. He married his first wife, Bertha Emma Sophia Krienitz
in 1867. They had three children. When Bertha died at age 26, George
married her sister, Wilhemina in 1874. In 1880, with 6 children, they
moved to North Alabama by wagon. George had admired the area on his
trek during the Atlanta Campaign. One daughter of George told her
descendants of the move. ‘we left as soon as the snow melted. I
remember counting the stars at night, and we slept under the wagon if
it rained. The little kids rode in the wagon, but us older kids mostly
walked’. Calculations indicate that they spent approximately 3 months
‘walking to Alabama’. George became a wealthy man, owning hundreds of
acres of land in the town of Cullman, Alabama.
MANY descendants of George Hoenig still live in the area.
Relatives who remember him
say he never talked about the War. One wonders…surely living out his
life in the Deep South, his daughters all marrying southern boys (2
daughters married twin brothers of the community who’s father, it turns
out, was in a few of the same battles as George- but on the other
side!) probably had a lot to do with his quietness about his
experiences. George’s second wife also died young, and by the end of
his life, he had a total of 6 wives. George is buried in the
‘Protestant’ cemetery of Cullman County, Alabama. The Hoenig family
plot is near the plot of the founder of the city, Johann G. Cullmann.
Biography and photos from Tammy Young Lyles.