Historical | Germany to 1875 | Emigration 1875-1876 | Wairarapa 1876-1900 | Manawatu 1900-1910 | Family 1910-1942 | Alves 1942-1995 | Post the 1995 Reunion | Bibliography | Postscript
It was less than two years after their marriage on Valentine's Day 1874 that Carl (Jnr) and Maria left for New Zealand. During this period their first child - Anna Maria Catherina - was born in Gelsenkirchen (December, 1874). While Carl (Jnr) might have been a coal miner at the time of his marriage in 1874, his occupation is given as “Farm Labourer” on the ship’s passenger list (see below) at the end of 1875. It is probable that, desiring to emigrate, Carl (Jnr) took work that would better equip him and enhance his chances of being selected, for pioneering work abroad.
In the 1870's conditions in the coal mines of the Ruhr valley were very poor and the pay worse. The arrival of the first of their children will have raised in Carl and Maria a sense of responsibility to provide for their family better than life in Germany allowed people of their means and status. Emigration was pursued by many in Germany at the time as a way of attaining a 'better' and more prosperous life. In NZ the Vogel assisted immigration scheme had been inaugurated and apart from financial advantage, this offered assured work upon arrival. Life had been very hard for both Carl & Mary with the cottage weaving industry foundering, family breakup and death their experience and, in Carl's case, the prospect of further military service perhaps an issue.
Some descendants suggest that Carl's (Jnr) first preference was to emigrate to Canada. Why that door did not open and the New Zealand one did, we may never know? Perhaps NZ offered the best deal - free passage to, and work in, a promised land. Maybe Carl's and Maria's relationship with Heinrich and Dorothea Schormann swung the deal - see below. Carl may have met Heinrich in the coalmines or through farm work prior to embarking for New Zealand. At least we know that almost certainly they associated during their 100 day sea voyage to New Zealand. Their daughters aboard ship were the same age. Their relationship, whenever it formed, resulted in them farming together subsequently.
Carl (Jnr) and Maria, with Anna Maria, were passengers on board the ship Gutenberg which left the port of Bremerhaven, Germany on 18th December, 1875. It is unclear why some family members understood that they travelled to New Zealand on the Humboldt. It may be that they had earlier booked passage on the Humboldt which left Hamburg for Wellington during October 1874. At that time, Maria was heavily pregnant with Mary who was born two months later, and it is possible that either they decided against leaving then because of the advanced pregnancy or they were not permitted to leave.
Their ship’s ticket number was “75” and the surname indicated is Alves. Carl aged 27 and Marie aged 20 are described as married man and woman from Prussia. Carl’s occupation is recorded as “farm labourer” and their daughter Anna as aged 1½. See the extract from the passenger list below and the transcript of the full passenger list in Appendix 2.
They were in the company of 164 emigrant passengers including 11 boys, 18 girls and 4 infants. Nationalities of the passengers were German - 72; Italian - 48; Danes - 15; Norwegians - 15; Swiss - 10; Swede - 1.
It is worth noting (see above illustration) that ticket number “76” on the Gutenberg was held by Heinrich (33) and Dorothea (27) Schormann and their children Friedrich (6) and Marie aged 1½. They too were from Prussia and Heinrich is also described as a farm labourer. It was Hermann Heinrich Schormann who subsequently, with Carl Alve, jointly purchased land at Eketahuna in 1880 - see below.
Details of the journey on the Gutenberg are recorded in various documents held at the National Archives in Wellington.These note that the ship left Bremerhaven on 18 December, 1875. It had been planned that the emigrants embark from Hamburg, but the river Elb was frozen over so they were taken over-land to Bremerhaven to board her, while the ship was towed through the ice.
This was the second journey of the Gutenberg to New Zealand. She had earlier discharged 137 immigrants from Europe at Lyttelton during October 1874. The “Lyttelton Times” on that occasion had described her as a, “fine iron clipper-built ship”. Captain Buckwoldt was her master on that journey also. An infant who travelled with his Danish parents on that voyage was Johannes Carl Anderson (1873-1962) author of “Old Christchurch” and several other publications, and also a prominent scientist and New Zealander.
The Gutenberg arrived at the Port of Wellington on 23rd March, 1876. “The New Zealand Times” edition of 24 March, 1876 reported on the voyage as follows,
The German ship Gutenburg, Captain Bockwoldt, arrived in harbour yesterday from Hamburg. She left Bremmerhaven on the 18th December, and met with a succession of W. and S.W. winds till the 27th. The following day, in consequence of thick foggy weather, anchored close to the Varne lightship. The weather cleared up on the 29th, when she weighed, and beat down Channel, which she cleared on the 2nd January. Had southerly winds to the 8th, when she fell in with the N.E. trades. Sighted San Antonio Island on the 16th; crossed the equator on the 24th, and experienced southerly winds to the 27th, veering to the S.E., continuing to the 5th February, when it shifted to the N.E., in lat. 30 S. and long. 28 W., with fog. On February 23rd she passed a number of icebergs at a distance of about 2 miles. On the 25th the steward, Emiel Bargman, died from brain fever. Had a continuation of N.E. winds to Banks peninsula, which she made on the 12th inst. Passed Cape Campbell on the 22nd in the evening, when the S.W. wind sprang up, which brought her into port. She comes into port a clean ship, there being no sickness of any kind on board. One death and one birth on the voyage. She has on board one saloon passenger and 165 souls., equal to 144 statute adults, under charge of Dr. Evers, surgeon-superintendent. Her cargo consists of 300 tons of coal for Messers Johnston and Co., Messers Krull and Co., being the agents.
The report of the Surgeon-Superintendent, Dr Evers, includes these comments on the voyage,
The single women were locked up each evening from sunset to sunrise....The greater part of the Italian immigrants were very odd fellows... they began to quarrel with their fellow emigrants as well as with the officers and crew. They showed so little cleanness....They refused to follow the regulations.