Francis W. Hoeber, writer of the "Hoeber: A Family Over Three Centuries" blog.

Francis W. Hoeber, writer of the “Hoeber: A Family Over Three Centuries” blog.

I am a writer and historian  in Philadelphia PA.  The Hoeber family originated in Karlsruhe Germany in the late eighteenth century.  Over the last 200 years, descendants and their spouses have contributed to progressive politics, history and the arts.  This website provides stories, texts and images related to this remarkable group of people.  Most posts are taken from the extensive archive of  photographs, letters and other documents left by my grandparents and parents, Rudolf and Josephine Höber and Johannes and Elfriede Hoeber.

Documents from the Hoeber Family Archive may be viewed by historians and other serious researchers upon request.  Requests may be communicated via an inquiry posted in the “comments” box below.

Information on the book about the Hoebers, Against Time:  Letters from Nazi Germany, 1938-1939, is available by clicking here.

18 Comments on “About”

  1. Sharon Carlisle says:

    Hi, Frank,
    How great that your book will be published! Bravo!

    And, given your long attachment to Philadelphia, what better place than the American Philosophical Society, with its deep roots in the city. (Well… I know… it would be nice to have a broader readership than the APS provides…but still… who wants to be Dan Brown, anyway?)

    The APS’s agreement to publish work by a non-academic — in today’s limited sense of the word — testifies to the quality of your scholarship. No doubt the quality of your writing puts many “academics” to shame.

    Anyway, I just wanted to send profuse congratulations. I can just visualize that broad smile of yours when you heard the news.

    Best to you and to Ditta,

  2. Olaf Dudzus says:

    Hi Frank,
    the Friedeberg Family was a well known jeweller family in Berlin. While searching the history of Germanys oldest golfclub, the Golf- und Land-Club Berlin-Wannsee, I not only found the descendants of Heinrich and Bernhardine Friedeberg in Great Britain and the USA but also an exciting history about Harold Friedeberg, grandchild of Heinrich and Berhardine, who was a prussian prosecutor, translator, author and chairman of our golfclub.
    In July last year I informed Mr. Rosenberg, that there are direct descendants living in UK. The Höber Family are descendants of Berhardines sister Amalie (neé Oppenheim). If you are interested in the Friedeberg family story, I send you a copy (it is in german).

    Best regards
    Olaf Dudzus, Potsdam, Germany

  3. William Stewart says:

    Dear Mr. Hoeber,

    Thank you for your excellent and well organized work on this site! I came across it while working on another family archive (as a volunteer translator of German) for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. Based on information in my documents, I suspected that the U.S. Consulate in Stuttgart was responsible for handling emigration to the U.S.; your information confirmed this. Thank you for your help.

    William Stewart

  4. Dear Mr. Hoeber,
    best wishes from the Dusseldorf Memorial Centre (Mahn- und Gedenkstätte Düsseldorf). We are currently doing research on a Jewish Family (Oppenheimer) from Düsseldorf. The mother wrote a very touching report about Kristallnacht in Düsseldorf. In it, she mentions Johannes and Susanne Höber. Johannes Höber tried to warn the family and supports the family with clothes from Susanne for their small daughter. While doing research on this report, we discovered your blog. We would very much like to get in contact with you. Perhaps you could send us an e-mail so that we might exchange more details.

    Yours sincerely
    Hildegard Jakobs and Andrea Kramp

  5. Dear Mr. Hoeber,

    I am working on Jewish liberals in 19C Germany as part of an international history of Jewish liberal activism c.1848-1948, and have identified your great uncle Heinrich Bernhard Oppenheim as of great interest. I have read his letters in the Bundesarchiv in Berlin, but would be very interested to know if you have additional material in your family archive. I am particularly interested in his connections with other Jewish liberals (Bamberger, Lasker, Auerbach), in his involvement in the Romanian Jewry campaign, and in the Nationalverein.
    I would be very happy to hear from you – abigail.green@history.ox.ac.uk

  6. Ruth Deussen says:

    Mr. Hoeber,

    I found this site while researching my father’s family. I am the daughter of Dr. Johann W. Deussen, who was the child of Prof. Paul J and brother of Erika. My birth is somewhat clouded since it may have been the result of an unfortunate second marriage, and due to my father’s early death, I know almost nothing about the Deussen branch. Your history has been most educational. If there are any relatives out there, hi. Drop me a line.


    Ruth B. Deussen

  7. Frank Hoeber says:

    Thanks Ruth Deussen, I’m glad the research was of interest to you. Am I correct that you are the sister of the late Paul Duessen, the professor? I knew him slightly as a young man, because he stayed with my family in Philadelphia when he first came to the US in the 1950s. Shortly before his death, Paul II had been working on translating a book about your grandfather, the first Paul Deussen, from German to English. The book, called Nitzches Freund (Nietzche’s Friend), was published by Heiner Feldhoff in Germany a few years ago. If you read German, there are a lot of resources about the first Paul on the Internet.

    • Ruth Deussen says:

      Sorry that it has taken so long to answer. Yes, I am the sister of Paul W. Deussen, and daughter of Johann Wolfgang Deussen. Erika was my aunt. My brother and I were not close, almost estranged. Something before my birth seems to have split the family., Because of your article, I have hunted down cousin Yoel Sommer and his family. Actually, I just spoke with him this evening, which reminded me to check this site. Let me know if there is any information I can provide. And, of course, if you can fill in blanks of Johann Wolfgang’s life, I would be delighted.

      I have spoken with Heiner some years ago, and was aware that Paul was translating the book, but the last time I spoke with him, he had not made progress. I’m tempted to scan it into google translate so that I can read it. My German stinks.

      I think you are my cousin, removed by multiple factors, so I will say good night, dear cousin. Your work on the family is wonderful.


  8. Eva-Maria Karpf says:

    Hello and thanks for your great work! I am another historian from Germany, currently preparing an exhibition about social and education politics in Kiel during the Weimar era. Josephine Höber’s work at the Eheberatungsstelle and her teaching at the Volkshochschule will be featured. Maybe you could help me out with a photo of her in the 1920s for the exhibition?.
    Also, I hope you will be interested in the following link, which leads to a poster for the Eheberatungsstelle.

  9. Philipp Messner says:

    Dear Mr. Hoeber
    Both your grandparents can be found on this group picture from a trip of the “Akademische Vereiningung” 1902 in Zurich that can be found at the Archives of the University of Zurich: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:(UAZ)_DOK.001.012_Akademische_Vereinigung.jpg
    Best Regards, Philipp

  10. Cole hoeber says:

    I am looking to do some research on my family lineage. I was wondering if you could help me out?

  11. robb hill says:

    Hello, I’m a photo researcher working with the Institute of International Education. The institute is publishing a book about the Scholars Rescue Fund – it’s a wing of IIE that helps academics get out of troubled areas in the world and into universities where they can safely work. The fund will be celebrating its centennial next year. The books’ title is: A Beacon of Hope: 100 Years of IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund.

    IIE would like, with your permission, publish a photograph of your grandfather, Rudolf Höber. The photo will be part of a grid of portraits as a chapter opener. The book will not be available commercially. It will be given to donors, scholars, academic libraries and archives.

    The photo in question is the one on the July 8, 2013 post. https://hoebers.wordpress.com/2013/07/08/1933-the-emergency-committee-in-aid-of-displaced-german-scholars/

    Thank you for your time and assistance with our project.

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