When Josef Berg arrived in American on 1 Mary 1923, he was processed through Ellis Island.

Josef "Saginaw Joe" Berg

Josef Berg is the first cousin once removed of Lorain Berg, Calvin R. Berg, and Karl Brunhofer. He is also the grandson of George Berg.

Josef was born in M√ľnchen, Germany on 29 August 1899. He served in the infantry of the German Army during World War I. His first cousin Ferdinand Berg served in the United States Army during the same war.

According to WWI German Personnel Rosters, in 1914, he was living in Bayern, Germany.

Josef departed Hamburg on the Minnekahda and arrived in New York on 1 May 1923.1 His final destination was listed as Auburn, Michigan.

In 1924, Josef married Amelia Schultz. The wedding was officiated by Dr. Henry Fischer.

In 1930, he was living in Saginaw, Michigan where he owned his home and worked as a machinist. To distinguish him from other Joseph's in the family, he became known as "Saginaw Joe," a nickname that was still being used in 2011.

When he emigrated to the United States, he was able to read and write German. We do not know his proficiency in English at that time. However, by 1930, he was able to read and write English.

Josef was employed by Lufkin Rule from which he retired in 1963. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church. He was also an avoid bowler.

Josef died on 4 January 1989 in Punta Gorda, Florida. He was survived by his sister Elizabeth Berg Kraus by three nieces: Elizabeth Karmann, Elizabeth Senft, and Traudel Frank.2

Josef's funeral took place on the 9 January 1989 at W.L. Case and Company Funeral Directors, located on 409 Adams in Saginaw, Michigan. He was buried in Oakwood Cemetery in Saginaw, Michigan with the Rev. Ron Davids officiating. In lieu of flowers, individuals were encouraged to make donations to the First Presbyterian Church.

1Josef's obituary lists 1922 as the date of him immigration, I find the material on the ship's manifest to be more convincing.

2Although we know that Josef had a sister named Elizabeth, it appears that he had at least one other sibling (e.g. two nieces are named Elizabeth).


Babette "Barbara" Berg


Amelia "Minnie" Schulz



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Steven L. Berg, PhD
Last updated on 9 August 2016.