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Ringeisen Relatives

Pauline Ringeisen-Spring (Pittsburgh, PA, U.S.A.) has set up a genealogy site. Have a look - and participate in the exchange of Ringeisen information (new site since March 2004!):

"The Ringeisen Family Association Website"

Certainly one of the most famous Ringeisens, Dominikus Ringeisen was a priest who founded an institution for severely handicapped people in the Swabian town of Ursberg. This is all the more remarkable as he lived in the 19th century. His achievements as a pioneer of care for the handicapped were specially honored in 1999, when the Deutsche Bundespost issued a special stamp in his memory. (The "Deutsche Bundespost" link takes you to a short biography of Dominikus Ringeisen and a technical description of the stamp.)

There is a very informative site of the Dominikus-Ringeisen-Werk (Kloster Ursberg), but I'm afraid there's no English version (see English biography below). If you do understand a bit of German, go ahead and click on the stamp.

And here is another web site dedicated to Dominikus Ringeisen's life and work, at the homepage of the Congregation of St. Joseph, which he founded. This page contains three photographs of Dominikus, for example the one below.

Dominikus Ringeisen, 1835-1904

The "Biographisch-Bibliographische Kirchenlexikon" contains a biographical entry on Dominikus Ringeisen, which I've translated into English:

RINGEISEN, Dominikus, catholic priest, born 6 December 1835 in Unterfinningen (near Dillingen/Donau), son of a small farmer; died 4 May 1904 in Ursberg, situated between Krumbach and Thannhausen, aged 69. - After his ordination in 1864 he began as a chaplain in Frankenried near Kaufbeuren, seven years later he became a priest in Obergünzburg (also near Kaufbeuren), where he stayed for eleven years. He collected 200.000 Marks for a new hospital building there. - In 1882 he was transferred to the convent of Franciscan nuns at Kaufbeuren, where he worked as confessor and teacher of religious studies. When 46-year-old Monika Seemüller, a farmer's daughter from Schlingen near Wörishofen, donated a handsome sum of money, Ringeisen bought the then secularized convent of Ursberg, on 24 February 1884. After lots of negotiations with officials, Ringeisen obtained permission for the foundation of his Ursberg Institutions as early as 24 August 1884. His institutions were soon to become the leading nursing home for the mentally handicapped, the deaf and dumb, the blind and the physically handicapped. Based on his unusual love for humankind, a will of iron, deep trust in God and also great organisational skills in matters of financial politics, Dominikus Ringeisen continued his work and extended it by buying additional buildings.

  • In 1885 he acquired the former seminary in Pfaffenhausen in order to set up an institution for the blind;
  • in 1897 he bought the land of the former Cistercian monastery of Bildhausen in Lower Frankonia in order to accommodate discharged prisoners - today Ursberg's biggest branch, with a home for handicapped men and women.
  • In 1901 he bought a castle in Grönenbach near Memmingen and turned it into a school for the learning-disabled; it was dissolved fifty years later and turned into a home for handicapped women plus workshops for them.
  • In 1891 Ringeisen had acquired the mineral spring of Krumbach, and in 1895 the hamlet of Percha on Lake Starnberg.
  • In 1897, a factory for the production of chip baskets was added to the Ursberg institutions, situated in Karlshuld; here Ringeisen intended to give families a chance to settle down. This part of his enterprise had to be abandoned in 1920.
  • After his death, Holzen monastery with a nursing home for the old were added, and also Breitenbrunn.

In 1888 Ringeisen took over the parish of Ursberg. On 19 March 1897 he could celebrate the foundation of his St. Joseph's Congregation with the reception of 155 young sisters. With their help he wanted to make charges "good and happy people" by loving care, education, instruction and work therapy. Dominikus Ringeisen died on 4 May 1904, a true Christian and a true believer, full of God-given benevolence.

My link with Dominikus: My grandfather and Dominikus had the same great-great-grandfather (Johann Ringeisen of Finningen); their great-grandfathers were stepbrothers.

A click on the map below takes you to a large map of Germany which shows you where in Germany there are people called "Ringeisen".

Familienstammbaum anlegen bei verwandt.de
Karten zum Namen Ringeisen
Verteilung des Namens Ringeisen