Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers (1815-1882)

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Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers, born in the Duchy of Brunswick, was was an early printer and journalist for German language newspapers in South Australia.

Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers
Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers.jpg
Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers
Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers

Duchy of Brunswick
Died30 January 1882
Adelaide, South Australia
Resting placeWest Terrace Cemetery, Adelaide, South Australia
  • Brunswicker (1815-1851
  • British(1851-1882
OccupationPrinter, Journalist
Spouse(s)Henriette Roennfeldt (married 1850 Adelaide, South Australia


Author: Rita Bogna

(originally published 2019 Burial and Cremation in South Australia. Used by permission of the author. All text and images are copyright unless otherwise indicated)

Carl Friedrich Wilhelm Eggers was born in 1815 in the Duchy of Brunswick. His father was a medical practitioner of some repute and ensured that his son had a university education. Eggers went to London in 1843 and was employed by the printing firm of Clowes, Gilbert & Rivington.

In South Australia

On 4 December 1848 he arrived in South Australia on the ship 'Thomas Lowry'. Initially he worked in George Dehane's printing office in King William Street, Adelaide, but later moved to the mechanical department of the Register and Observer newspapers. By February 1850 he was acting as the German reporter for the Register.

On 2 March 1850 Eggers married Henriette Roenfeld (1830–1919). The couple had three children, Jane (1851), Charles Augustus Louis (1852–), and Johanna (Mrs. John Loessel) (1853–1902). A year later he became the German-language interpreter for the courts at a salary of £100.

Australische Zeitung 14 Janury 1879

In September 1851 Eggers purchased the Australische-Deutsche Zeitung (the Australian-German Newspaper) from Rudolph Reimer (c. 1819–1860) who had founded the newspaper in April 1851 and had bought the Süd-Australische Zeitung (the South Australian Newspaper) and merged the two newspapers. The Australische-Deutsche Zeitung was the first German-language newspaper to publish an entertainment supplement, Blätter für Ernst und Scherz. Eggers also purchased the German printing press and type used by Reimer and established his printery in the Register Building in Grenfell Street.

A few years later Eggers took George Valentin Eimer (1825–1901) into the business as a partner. Eggers retired from the partnership (Eggers & Eimer) in 1874 after printing the first issue of Der Lutherische Kirchenbote für Australien (the Lutheran Church Messenger for Australia). Eimer then went into partnership with Martin Basedow. Eggers continued his own printing works and resumed printing the Kirchenbote in 1878. In the following year he began editing and publishing the Australischer Volks Kalendar (Australian Peoples Calendar), a German-language book almanac, but due to ill health in 1880 he had to arrange for it to be typeset by Basedow & Eimer.

The Adelaide Observer wrote that after Eggers "associated himself with others in all matters connected with his German fellow-colonists, by, as well as by all who knew him, he was greatly respected for his honourable and genuine character. He was a thorough German at heart, and often defended his fatherland against attacks appearing in the press".

Eggers died on 30 January 1882 at the age of 66 after suffering a series of strokes. He was buried in the West Terrace Cemetery (Road 4 Path 20 Site 31 West) on the following day. His funeral was attended by a large number of people, including many of South Australia's leading German colonists. The funeral was conducted in German by Lutheran Pastor Carl Friedrich Adolph Strempel. Those present included Franz Gaetjens, Henry Heuzenroeder, Robert Homburg, Alexander Kauffmann, William Gustav Kindermann, Christian Ludwig Meyer, Wilhelm Nitschke, Henry Noltenius, Ernst Wilhelm Theodor Pustkuchen, Carl Puttmann, Heinrich Schmidt, Dr. Richard Schomburgk, Franz Heinrich Sonnemann, Julius Wilhelm Sudholz, Alexander Tilemann, the German Consul Adolph von Treuer, Wilhelm Vosz and Joachim Matthias Wendt.

Henriette Eggers died on 10 January 1919 at the age of 89 and was buried in the West Terrace Cemetery (Road 4 Path 29 Site 12 West).


Eggers married Henriette Roennfeldt at Scottish Church (Flinders Street), Adelaide, on 2 March 1850. At the time, the Scottish Church was being used by Pastor Andreas Kappler, an independent Lutheran Minister, for services. They had the following children:

  • Jane (Johanna Dorothea Juliane) (26 September 1851 – )
  • Charles Augustus Louis (26 September 1852 – )

Johanna married Karl Emil Johannes (John) Loessel at her father's residence in Kent Town 8 Feb 1868 at the age of 17. They had two children: Clara Henriette Minna (1868) and Marie Wilhelmine Rhea (1872). Johanna died 31 March 1902.

Eggers younger brother Julius Friedrich Carl also migrated to South Australia, arriving in December 1850 aboard the 'Australia'. He farmed at Cockatoo Valley and on the Kingsford estate.

Residences in the City

Dates Place Current Address Co-ordinates

Work in the City

Dates Place Current Address Co-ordinates

Published Obituary

From Australische Zeitung Tuesday 31 January 1882:


Herr W. Eggers, früherer langjähriger Besitzer und Herausgeber der "Adelaider Deutschen Zeitung", starb nach längerem Krankheit am Schlagflusse Sonntag Nacht. Gott tröste die Hinterlassenen! Friede sei mit ihm![1]

[Death - Mr. W. Eggers, formerly the longstanding owner and editor of the "Adelaide German News", died of a stroke on Sunday night after a long illness. God comfort those left behind! Peace be with him!]

From The Advertiser Friday 3 February 1882:

News of the Fortnight

It is with regret we announce the death of Mr. William Eggers, who was for some years editor and proprietor of the South Australian Deutsche Zeitung, and was since then a contributor up to the time of his death to the English press of Adelaide. He was a colonist of thirty-two years' standing, and during almost his whole career in South Australia was connected with newspaper work, having been employed on the Register for some years before be started the Zeitung. The deceased gentleman was a man of considerable attainments, and was held in great esteem by his countrymen and by all who knew him.

He leaves a widow, a widowed daughter, and a grandchild. His death was caused by a paralytic stroke, which was not the first from which he had suffered.[2]

From The Adelaide Observer Saturday 4 February 1882:


We regret to notify the death of Mr. Wm. K. F. Eggers .the well-known German journalist. Mr. Eggers has been connected with the Press in one capacity or another ever since he arrived in the colony from London in the year 1848. While resident in London he was employed on German works in the establishments of Messrs. Clowes and Gilbert and Rivington's; and soon after his arrival in Adelaide was engaged in Mr. Dehane's printing-office, King William-street, which he left about the time of the discovery of gold in Victoria, joining the mechanical department of the Register and Observer offices, where he remained until he started the Sud Australische Deutsche Zeitung, the first newspaper printed in German in the colony. Of this he was for some years the sole proprietor, but afterwards took as a partner Mr. Eimer, subsequently retiring from the firm himself. Mr. Eggers was born in Brunswick in 1815, and was the son of a medical man. He received a University education and was a man of literary tastes and culture, has since contributed largely to the columns of the English Press of this colony, chiefly on Continental matters, and has printed the Kirchenbote., a religious Publication issued in the interests of the Lutheran Church, besides editing and publishing the "Deutsche Kalendar." Although of late years Mr. Eggers has ceased to take an active interest m public affairs, he formerly associated himself with others. In all matters connected with his German fellow colonists, by whom, as well as by all who knew him, he was greatly respected for his honourable and genuine character. He was a thorough German at heart, and often defended his fatherland against attacks appearing in the press. Mr. Eggers had been the subject of two paralytic strokes in times past, and died from the effects of a third early on Monday. He leaves a widow and one married daughter, Mrs. J. Loessel, also a widow, and one grandchild. The funeral took place in the West-terrace Cemetery on Tuesday afternoon, and was followed, by a large number of the leading citizens and colonists, German and English, with whom the deceased gentleman had established terms of friendship during his long, useful career. Among those who attended the funeral were Messrs. C. Eggers (nephew of deceased), G. Eimer, F. Basedow, M.P., A. von Treuer, J.P., C. Putt mann, A. Kauffmann, R. Homburg, A. Witt, A. Tilemann, C. L. Meyer, J. W. Sudholz, F. Sudholz, H. Heuzenroeder, W. Vosz, F. Sonnemann, B. Noltenius, S. Schmidt, W. von Trotha, J. J. May, W. and H. Kindermann, H. Schmidt, E. Pustkuchen, W. Nitschke, F. Gaetjens, D. Mahncke, G. C. Schedlich, J. M. Wendt, Dr. Schomburgk, also Messrs. R. K. Thomas and C. Day (proprietors of the Register), T. W. Harris, W. Bednall, George Wilson, S. J. Skipper, H. Hele, and S. J. Whitmore. The service was conducted by the Rev. A. Strempel in German.[3]


  1. "Colonielle Angelegenheiten - Todesfall" [Colonial Affairs - Death]. Australische Zeitung (in Deutsch). Adelaide, South Australia. 31 January 1882. p. 1. Retrieved 23 March 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. "News of the Fortnight". South Australian Advertiser (Supplement to the SA Advertiser ed.). Adelaide, South Australia. 3 February 1882. p. 2. Retrieved 23 March 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. "DEATH OF MR. K. F. W. EGGERS". Adelaide Observer. Adelaide, South Australia. 4 February 1882. p. 29. Retrieved 23 March 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

External links

  1. Eggers, Karl Friedrich Wilhelm (1815–1882), Australian Dictionary of Biography