Bertha Bach may have arrived in the United States at age 11 in 1870 or age 24 in 1883 as information in census records is inconsistent. What we do know, however, is that she was born on June 9, 1859, in the Alsace region that has at various times in history been either part of France or the German Empire (her country of origin has consistently been listed as Germany or Prussia).

Born to Philip Bach and Margaret Rheinhart (per death record), her life prior to arrival is a mystery. Evidence of what town she was born in Europe, when and how she departed for America, has been quite elusive.

Her marriage to Georg Theordor Koch, her first husband, a German immigrant and my ancestor, certainly took place, but the date of marriage too has not been located. Their first child, my great grandmother Bertha C Koch, was born 26 Jun 1886 in New York City, followed by two sisters and a brother, who died before celebrating his first birthday. The young couple lived in the tenement houses of NYC, with Georg working as a waiter.

Upon the death of Georg, she would remarry and make a new family with another German immigrant, Robert Schoner. She would pass away on 27 Oct 1926 at the age of 67, outliving both of her late husbands.

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