Dorothea Meyer, daughter of Georg Meÿer and Dorothea Linhardt, was born on 23 May 1830 and baptized at the church in Nehweiler bei Wörth, Elsaß, [Nehwiller-près-Woerth, Alsace]. At that time, France ruled Alsace, although German was the common spoken language. Dorothea emigrated with her parents and siblings from Le Havre, arriving in New Orleans on 23 June 1837, then coming to St. Louis.

By August 1837, the Meÿers had purchased a farm near what is now Spoede and Clayton Roads in St. Louis County. But before the end of that year, her father, Georg Meÿer, died. Dorothea’s mother, Dorothea Linhardt Meÿer, married Peter Greb on 9 January 1838. Until her own marriage, Dorothea Meyer continued living with her Greb parents on the Meyer farm. After Dorothea married, the Grebs purchased land in the far west part of the county and the Meyer land sold to Christoph Straub.

Dorothea Meyer married Friedrich Wilhelm Straub Jr. at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Olivette on 10 May 1848. The couple had nine children, seven of whom survived: Christoph, 1849; Friedrich, (died as an infant); Andreas, 1853; Dorothea, (died as an infant); Louisa, 1858–1878; Christiana Katharine, 1861; Margarethe Sabine, 1864; Christian, 1866; and Carl Wilhelm, 1870. In 1849, Friedrich Straub purchased a farm for his own family in Bonhomme Township, between Big Bend Road and the Missouri Pacific Railroad, just west of what is today Interstate 270, a site that is now a country club.

Nehwiller pres Woerth
Nehwiller près Woerth
Photo in the collection of Carol Whitton
Used with permission

The couple was active in local Lutheran churches. Dorothea sponsored the baptism of Wilhelmina Dorothea Straub on 10 October 1875 at Concordia Lutheran Church in Kirkwood.

On 15 March 1876, husband Friedrich died on their farm at the age of fifty-seven. Dorothea was appointed administrator of Friedrich’s estate, probated in the City of St. Louis even though they lived in the just-separated county. Dorothea named the seven surviving children, along with herself, as heirs, and attested she believed the estate would not exceed $1200 in value.

Dorothea continued living on the family farm until her youngest children came of age. Then fourteen years after Fred’s death, Dorothea and family sold the farm, on 25 September 1890, for $5000. They sold to Jacob Epstein and others representing the Meramec Highlands Company, which had formed to purchase the Straubs’ land. This company created a recreational area with rides, amusements, picnic area, and a lake, which became a popular resort for city residents for the next fifty or so years. After the family farm sold, Dorothea lived with her daughter Christine and son-in-law, William Surman, in Kirkwood until her death.

Dorothea Straub died on 17 August 1914 at Deaconess Hospital, St. Louis, at age eighty-four. Her funeral took place at Concordia Lutheran Church in Kirkwood, but burial occurred at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church Cemetery on Ballas Road in Des Peres. Although burial there has been confirmed, there is no tombstone for her or for some of the other early Straubs buried there.

Written by Carol Whitton
April 2017

© 2016, St. Louis Genealogical Society

Return to St. Louis City/County Biographies.

Last Modified: 25-Oct-2018 21:39