Christian Köhl-Stemmer (1875-†1917) - Araschgen

Christian Köhl, married in 1908 to Rosa Paulina Stemmer (1878-†1962).
Son of Christian Köhl-Riedi (1837-†1922)

Köhl Christian was born on April 13, 1875 in the Armenheim Totengut in Chur and spent his first 4 years of life there. Since his father quit his job as a supervisor at the Totengut, the family moved to Rabengasse in Chur. Christian spent his youth there in the somewhat dilapidated house "Zur Turteltaube", in the middle of the old town. He went to school in Chur and learned the trade of a carpenter in the furniture factory at Sägenstrasse 73, also living there in the building's residential house during his apprenticeship.

In 1890, at the age of 15, he left Chur and began his wanderings. As a journeyman carpenter, he worked outside of Chur, returning to Chur only 2 years later and again lived in the family home. Christian again worked outside of Chur for some time. However, he then found a permanent job in the workshop of the SBB Chur.

In 1908 he married the attractive Rosa Paulina Stemmer from Pfäfers. The two moved into a modest, inexpensive apartment on Calunaweg in the Lürlibad. Their first two children, Elsi and Christian, were born there. According to family tradition, the first-born son bore the name of his father and grandfather. Since Rosa became pregnant again, the family moved to a larger apartment in house 632a/347 IV. Here Paul and Meta were born.

Wife: Rosa Paulina Stemmer
Children: 4
Occupation: Carpenter


Relocation to Araschgen and death of the father

In July 1912, Christian bought from August Schär an old Walser house in the Araschgen-Malixer area, consisting of a tree garden and farmland in the Riedwiesli with a house built on it and 2 stables, near the mountain stream Rabiusa and the Chur city limits[100]. He, his wife Rosa and their 4 small children left Chur and moved to Araschgen. His niece Maria Elisabeth Rungger, who had just finished school and started an apprenticeship at the Kurhaus in Passugg, also lived with them. Since Christian continues to work in the SBB workshop, he commutes every day between Chur and Araschgen.

The children now spent their happy youthful years here and attended kindergarten and school above the Kurhaus. In August 1914, the Federal Council ordered the general mobilization. Christian also had to pack his knapsack and enlist. He was probably stationed at the St. Luzisteig fortress. The women also had to make themselves useful: "To the sewing machines," was the order in 1914. Rosa, as a trained seamstress, had to tailor uniforms for the conscripts.

Even before the end of the First World War, the young family was struck by a heavy blow of fate. In January 1917, Christian died unexpectedly in the city hospital of Chur as a result of a pelvic abscess.

Widow Rosa was left penniless with her 4 children. Since Rosa was a citizen of Chur, the city of Chur supported the widow with some money, and engineer Haltmeier was also appointed as her guardian. Since the house in Araschgen was heavily mortgaged, Rosa tried to sell the house, but did not succeed. Rosa also seemed overwhelmed with the situation. She neglected the children and began a disastrous affair with the casual laborer Julius Schaub, and became pregnant again.


The Poor Commission steps in

The authorities now intervened and 9 months after the death of the father placed the two sons Christian and Paul in the orphanage in Masans[66]. The two daughters Meta and Elsi were also placed in the orphanage in Masans a short time later. Since Rosa had become pregnant again and her father, as an unskilled worker, was not able to support her mother, Rosa got into financial difficulties. She could no longer bear the costs for the house, on the other hand she wanted to return to Chur to be closer to her children. So Rosa moved into a small apartment on Lürlibadstrasse in Chur. The house in Malix was not sold. At best, the Köhl-Rungger family continued to live in the house.

Rosa gave birth to another daughter, Luise Köhl, in 1918. The father of the child assured support, but often the money was not enough and the city of Chur had to support the single mother. Rosa lived with her child for 8 years at Kupferschmiedeweg 25, often unable to pay the rent on her meager income. After that she moved to a somewhat larger apartment at Reichsgasse 52. Her children, who had grown up in the meantime, often visited her and lived with her in between.

In 1928, 11 years after Christian's death, the house in Araschgen was sold after all. The community of heirs consisted of Rosa and her 4 children, represented by Gustav Gmelin (guardian of the 4 children) and counsel Christian Nell (Rosa). The background for the sale is not known. Niece Maria Elisabeth Rungger had returned to Chur from Passugg 2 years earlier, married and moved away. Brother Peter had died 2 months earlier, and sister Ursula had fallen ill and was also soon to die. The two daughters had moved to the Unterland, and the two sons still in the orphanage.

In 1932 she moved to Welschdörfli and later to an apartment at Gürtelstrasse 47. Rosa did not marry again after the death of her husband. She lived alone in her home at Gürtelstrasse 47 in Chur until her death in August 1962 and is fondly remembered by her grandchildren.



Ancestor line

  1. Julius de Rogister
  2. Arnold Köl, Obristrichter
  3. Peter Köhl, Gatekeeper
  4. Bernhard von Köhl, Mayor
  5. Bernhart Köhl, Pastor
  6. Bernhard von Köhl, Head guild master
  7. Simeon Köhl, Shoemaker
  8. Simeon Köhl-Hertner, Blacksmith
  9. Christian Köhl, Carpenter
  10. Christian Köhl



66: Protokoll der Armenpflege Chur

100: Kaufprotokolle Gemeinde Malix, Bauamt Valbella, 1812/28, E Nr. 66 S61-62/F Nr. 109 S112-113

Parts of the biography of Christian Köhl are only accessible for registered users.

Impressum und rechtliche Hinweise