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My main goal is to research the Kirchdorfer name. I have found my grt grt grandfather Ferdinand Kirchdorfer came from the village of Schirrhein in the Alsace Region, a germanic enclave in far north-eastern France. He immigrated to America in late 1854.

I received Ferdinand's Civil War Pension file from the National Archives. It was FULL of information! In the four years that I have been compiling my family history, this was the best $37 I've spent! It is a stack of photocopies 2 inches thick on legal paper. It held so much information that I now feel as if I actual know him as a familiar person. There was physical information about his appearance (which no one in the family had ever known before). Afidavits from friends and family (in their own handwriting) of his exploits while serving during the war. Family information that corrected and/or confirmed years of questions and confusion. I even found in the stack, an affidavit from Ferdinand's sister (Katharina Gittinger, 8 years older), which I never knew he had! This family association has allowed me to push back two more generations in Alsace.

I would HIGHLY recommend anyone doing research on someone who served in the Union during the Civil War to apply for their civil war pension records. Go to :

I have reason to believe that further research will show that the Kirchdorfer family name originated in the south-western Black Forrest village of Kirchdorf (See link provided on this page). Due to the fact that families back then usually didn't move very far from where they were born. And being that Schirrhein is only about 110km (75 miles) from the German town of Kirchdorf, and there are no other German towns named Kirchdorf that are even reasonably close; it is a reasonable assumtion to beleive that this is the town that holds the origins of our family name of "Kirchdorfer" (i.e. "one who is from the town of Kirchdorf"). I will do more digging to confirm this.

I have also found several branches in my family to other names that are quite interesting. The Crumpler family (my mother's family line) also goes pretty far back to England. Records from England appear to show that two of them (father and son) were archers for Henry the VIII around 1500! One of the Crumplers in my family was a hanging sheriff in North Carolina in the 1800's. The Spell family (my paternal grandmother's family) was also the sheriff for the same county in North Carolina.

Any information that anyone can provide which I can add to this tree would be enormously appreciated. Please email photos or information (birthdates, stories, documents, photocopies, etc.) of any of the family members listed (or not listed) on this sight. GEDCOM files are welcome also.

Every effort to verify data with more than one source has been attempted, however errors do occur. If you know of some data that is definitely in error, please email me with the source and I'll correct it immediately. Your help in maintaining the integrity of this data will be greatly appreciated and will help others searching in the future.

I hope this site helps someone find a long lost relative or fact they didn't know. I am constantly updating and adding to this site.

My Family Throughout The Ages
Updated December 27, 2006


Louis Shawn Kirchdorfer

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My Family History


Family Photos

  • Kirchdorfer Men c.1950 (24 KB)
    (Left to Right)Louis Edward "Pop" Kirchdorfer, Uncle John, Louis Frank Kirchdorfer and Ben Kirchdorfer and Will Kirchdorfer (Edward's brothers) circa Oct 1950
  • Crumpler Family photo (Easter) c.1958 (57 KB)
    From left to right: (top row) Harold, Carl, Hazel (aka Becky), Payton, Aubrey, Joanna. (bottom row) Alice (Faircloth) Branch , Hattie (Branch) Crumpler, Hubert Crumpler.
  • Early photo of the Kirchdorfer brothers pre-1900 (81 KB)
    Will, Ben and Edward at what looks like a birthday party/picnic. All very young (look at Will!). Pre-1900.
  • Swinburn Family Photo circa 1890 (82 KB)
    From left to right (standing) - Matthew Swanson Swinburn, Eula Swinburn Turner (Mrs. W.F. Turner), Oscar Swinburn, Vinnie Leigh (Martin) Swinburn (Mrs. Wade C. Martin). Seated - Alva Curtis Swinburn & Elizabeth (Gilbert) Swinburn.
  • Edward, Elizabeth, Frank Kirchdorfer circa 1908-09 (153 KB)
    Louis Edward Kirchdorfer with wife Elizabeth B. (Welch) Kirchdorfer and son Louis Frank
  • Spell Family Photo circa 1947 (75 KB)
    Top row left to right - Murray Butler & wife Flora "Flo" Clyde Spell, wife (unkn) and Gordon Spell, Rudy Spell. ----- Bottom Row left to right - Louis Ray Kirchdorfer, Betty Jean Kirchdorfer, Alice Cleo (Spell) Kirchdorfer, Aulman Robye Spell [with Flo & Murray's son (Robye?) in his lap], Alice (Gordon) Spell, Lawton Spell. Louis Frank Kirchdorfer taking photo.
  • Louis Edward's "Sister" sisters (53 KB)
    From left to right, Cleo [Spell] Kirchdorfer, Betty Jean, Louis Ray, nun (left) Corrine, nun (right) unkn; circa 1948
  • Kirchdorf, Schwarzwald-Baar Kreis (54 KB)
    Village seal of Kirchdorf
  • Kirchdorfer Family photo c.1915 (284 KB)
    This photo had to have been taken sometime between 1906 and 1917. Ferdinand is not in the picture due to having divorced Emma in 1906 & died around 1908. And Elizabeth died in 1917.
  • Ferdinand's Children (150 KB)
    Left to right: Louis Emil (Edward), Bernard, Corrinne (middle), Emilie (Kirchdorfer) Rompel, Clara

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