Story of the Week: Gefreiter Ambros Weber

This week our story is once again brought to us by Notburga Felber of Ettlingen-Spessart, in the hills above Ettlingen. Notburga's grandfather on her father's side, Ambros Weber, was a small farmer. He was born in Spessart on October 7, 1882.

Ambros and Martha
on their wedding day

In the early 20th century, small farming in South Germany was not a very lucrative occupation and so Ambros also worked in a factory in Ettlingen Town.

He married his sweetheart Martha. At the outbreak of the Great War, he was thus 32 and already married.

It was typical for girls to marry in black at this time.

Ambros joined up with the 1st Landsturm Infantry Batallion No. 56, 2nd Company in Rastatt, near Ettlingen.

The photo on the left shows him in full uniform, with the photographer's romantic caption "Zur Erinnerung" - "A memento".

Ambros' unit was posted to France, on the Western Front. The bataillon was ultimately subordinate to the 28th Division of the Kingdom of Prussia and Ambros would thus have fought all along the Western Front, including battles at the Vosges, Arras, the Somme, Flanders, Champagne, Verdun, Reims and Chemin-des-Dames. 

Ambros in the more typical photographer's pose of new recruits after joining up.

We also have a postcard that Ambros sent to Martha on May 10, 1915, apparently from Dieuze, which is in French Lorraine. The photo on the front of the card shows Ambros together with one of his comrades, and Ambros is standing on the left in this picture.

Ambros (left) in Lorraine, 1915

In the postcard, Ambros thanks Martha for her postcard from Mosbronn and tells her that he is sending her a photo from the Front as a souvenir of the war.

He asks her not to worry about him so much and says that he knows she has a lot of work at home but he asks her to only do what she can because when he comes home, he wants to see her well and healthy.

Ambros survived the war and returned home, where he took up work again in the factory. He and Martha had several children, including Notburga's father, and he died on May 9, 1959.

Ambros' card to Martha from Dieuze in Lorraine in May 1915.

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