Carl Ludwig Weidert III
January 25, 1943 — July 29, 2018
  Carl Weidert

Carl's Forbearers

The following summarizes conversations I (Marti Weidert) had with Carl, his Aunt Helen, and his Uncle Leonard Weidert.

Carl and I married in 1998; Stan gave us a wedding gift of a flight anywhere in the U.S. We chose New Orleans.

We visited there in March of 1999 or thereabouts; stayed at Aunt Helen's home for around 2 or 3 days and paid a visit while there once to Leonard and Leah, who are now (2017) 95 and 94 years old. Then we rented a car and drove down the Gulf Coast and got a taste of Louisiana—it's like a foreign country! We saw alligators in bayous, ate crayfish and saw the effects of a horrific hurricane on the Gulf many years ago.


Cecile Ory's family came over from Alsace-Lorraine (a territory created by the German empire in 1871) way before the revolutionary war from the land between France and Germany. The Americans bought Louisiana from Napolean before he withdrew the offer around 1803. Cecile grew up on a plantation up Mississippi River from New Orleans. Cecile was from the other side of the river. She was small and quiet. She spoke of her uncles and aunts on the other side of the river, where there were fewer towns and people. She was a story teller, but she had strict limits. You knew what you could and couldn't get away with.

She made good Red Beans and Rice (with pickled ham and ham hocks), Gumbo, and Rice and Gravy. The pot roast would be cooked in a deep pot, the drippings set aside. A roux was made, then meat juices added to create a gravy served with rice and eat. Cecile made a great Okra Gumbo (okra, onion, tomato, crab, chicken, whatever).

Grandfather Carl Ludwig Weidert and she bought a small house on the corner at 2105 Leonidis Street in the Leonidis area of New Orleans. (Zillo: it sold in 2016 for a lot of money).

Everyday, his grandmother Cecile would send Carl (the first born child of "Pops" Carl and Marjorie Weidert) to the local market to buy French bread, fresh. Carl was born 1/25/43 in San Francisco but after the war they lived for a time in New Orleans. In France you see, the French do their shopping daily.

Cecile produced four children: Carl Ludwig Weidert "Pops", Leonard Weidert, Helen Weidert Moran, and Grace Weidert, who suffered from Multiple Sclerosis as an adult. Grace had a beau as a young woman, but when she lost her vision, the beau went away and Grace never married. Carl remembers as a little boy with Eddie and maybe Stan that Aunt Grace would take them to the movies a lot and buy them ice cream. Carl really appreciated and enjoyed these acts of kindness by his Aunt.

THE WEIDERT SIDE - When we spoke with Helen Weidert Moran (Carl's aunt) she was 81 (1999 or 2000). Leonard was her older brother.

Carl is Carl III. His daddy Pops was CARL LUDWIG WEIDERT II. Carl's grandfather was CARL LUDWIG WEIDERT I—who worked decades for Louisiana Pacific Railways as a railroad engineer, which routes extend from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico in New Orleans. Pops initially got employment at Illinois Central Railroad Mays Yard as a night watchman before getting a better job.

That man's father CARL LUDWIG WEIDERT I was supposedly the first full-blooded German civil engineer from Germany. He graduated in Germany from an engineering college. He was born the son of a noble family. In noble families, all sons had to serve in the German military. He did not want to serve in the military at that time (1890s?) so he immigrated to the U.S. In America he found employment designing bridges on roadways. In New York, he encountered a full blooded peasant German young lady, "Annie". They married in Buffalo New York. He got year-long jobs all over the east. His wife and children would move with him. Annie gave birth to four living children. Her husband, that first Carl died of yellow fever while working on a bridge project in Alabama. They lived in a "company town" in a company dwelling and she was pregnant with her fourth pregnancy when Carl died. Yellow fever is a viral disease with a high fever, and high mortality rates. It is transmitted by mosquitos. We have eliminated yellow fever in the United States.

Now Annie was a young widow with four children to feed and raise, alone. Annie had a friend in New Orleans, Louisiana. Annie lost two of her four children. Annie moved to New Orleans, taking the money she and her husband had. He made good money as a civil engineer and they had saved up consistently. She took the money and got a house in New Orleans near the French Quarter. Annie lived on 12th Street a block from the great Mississippi River. She prepared it and ran a boarding house for engineers and fireman working nearby. That was the part of New Orleans at the end of the railroad line for train employees. In those days when a woman ran a boarding house she not only provided a room for them, but gave them a meal and washed their clothing, dried it and returned it to them! Annie was determined she was not returning to Germany. Annie provided for her children first that way. Aunt Helen (one of her 4 children) can remember her own grandfather (father) sending money he had earned back to Germany to his mother and relatives.

After the boarding house work or during it, Annie started with buying 7 dairy cows. From milking them, Annie made from their milk and sold milk, cream, butter, cheese. She ran them on the levee, which was free pasture (no charge). This would have been around the 1890s. Pasteurization had yet to be discovered. You didn't need a giant farm. Annie learned she could feed her dairy cows clover and grass cut along the Mississippi River levees that prevented flooding and directed the flow of the river. Annie and her family stayed in one place for years. She bought the house outright (no debt) after she ran the boarding house.

Years passed. Annie remarried an Austrian gentleman who was kind to her children. After some time running the boarding house and handling dairy cattle and selling their dairy products, is when she married the Austrian nice man. His name was Fadureich or Faduwitch (spelling unknown!!) He changed it to Faggio—why? Easier to spell?

Sometimes Annie would punish the boys without knowing the facts. The man from Austria encouraged her to listen to the boys and get the facts before disciplining. He would give them candy. He was good to them. He took care of the boys. When he'd come home Annie would tell him about misbehavior that may have happened. He'd say "Annie, you listen to the boys. Don't fight with the boys. Listen." In Annie's Bedroom, she had three large photographs. Her own photograph was in the middle. Her first husband's photograph was on the left, and her Austrian husband's portrait was on the right. After her death, the photographs disappeared. This is why your Uncle Carl has no photographs of those people.

Question: What does Helen (Weidert) Moran remember as the best part of her two parents: Cecile and Carl Weidert? EVERYTHING! Whenever her father had a couple of extra dollars, it went to buy shoes for his children. He went without. Carl put tape to tape up cracks in the sole of his shoe. He would "half-sole" his shoe (cut a thick piece of leather out, tack it to his shoe to save the cost of having the showman cobbler do it. Cecile loved her children and she loved to sew and she made all her children's clothing.

Midge the Barber cut the hair of all the Weidert family until your Uncle Carl and his family (Marjorie and Pops) moved to the other side of the lake to MANDEVILLE, LA. The new barber in Mandeville was starting to cut the hair of Jim Weidert (age 2) and he pulled out a straight razor. Pops reacted quickly: "That's it!" With a squirming two year old Jim, Pops did not want to risk the boy getting hurt. "I can do this" so he learned to cut hair. Carl was about 9 years old then (around 1952). From the age of Jim (2) and Carl (9), Pops Weidert cut Carl's hair until Pops died. Pops died in June of 1996, I believe. 44 years!


Carl took the ferry across the River. He stole pecans from land belonging to an Ory uncle. He got britches full of rock salt as he fled with buddies back across the river. He married a French girl named Cecile Ory. Cecile's father had a plantation. They grew everything on their plantation in the days of black slavery: cotton, fruit orchards, and sugar cane. The Ory plantation was all burned during the Civil War between the American states from 1860-1865.

Cecile was a very quiet person, and very small. She was very good at sewing and loved to do it. Sometimes she sewed half the night! She made all her own clothing. She had two sons, Carl (Pops) and Leonard, and two daughters Helen and Grace. When the girls were out of school Cecile made all their clothing over the summer. When fall came they were ready for school. The other kids would ask them where they got their dresses; they admired them.

Cecile sewed for the siblings Eddie, Carl, Jim, Stan, Heather and Cecile little pants, shirts, shorts, blouses to wear West when Pops Weidert landed a job in California with the FEDERAL AVIATION ASSOCIATION. She made them all. "She could whip out buttonholes by hand like nothin' foolin!" They had to make their own clothes, you see. Helen told us that her sister Grace (who became blind and went to a School for the Blind in New Orleans) went to school where she learned to sew suits and coats.

MARDI GRAS (FAT TUESDAY) - AKA CARNIVAL TIME (February - Christian feast of Epiphany, 47 days before Easter) There were formal indoor parties called BALLS held at social clubs. At Carnival Time in New Orleans, Grace helped bead the fancy gowns that took months to complete. Helen said she was more of a tomboy, but she herself made all her suits and crocheted, but at 81 could not anymore.


When Cecile was young, Helen told us she had to take over her family as her mother died when Cecile was just ten years old. Cecile's older sister did the mothering until she married; when Cecile turned 18 she assumed the duties of surrogate mother. So you can imagine the impact of the death of a plantation owner when a young child is only 10. One of Cecile's brothers was murdered. His market was located very close (3 or 4 blacks) from the Weidert's 2105 Leonodis Street home. Helen: "My brother's wife and I walked into the back of his Meat and Vegetable Market and found him dead; in the meat cooler, stabbed in the back." Helen said a New Orleans cemetery is where they are buried.

YOUNG CARL WEIDERT II (Cecile's mate) - the railroad career man. He began working for ILLINOIS CENTRAL at the humblest job, but stayed for 40 years. He moved many trains in the Mays switching yard. He read the Times Picayune every day from front to back. During the Great Depression (10/29/1929-1939) Carl was demoted from railroad engineer to railroad fireman on the train, but he still had a job. Many other men lacking seniority or not working for such a solvent firm) lost their jobs. His younger brother GEORGE ("Uncle George" to Helen and Leonard and Pops Weidert) was murdered. He was employed as a NEW ORLEANS POLICE OFFICER. He and two fellow policemen had picked up someone and jailed him. One of them entered the jail cell wearing his revolver. The pistol was grabbed and shot and killed George Weidert and a third officer. Three policemen were murdered in 1 day in New Orleans. It was a very black day in New Orleans History.

Pops, Helen and Leonard were glad to be Southern. Sometimes to tease their father, they would call him a Yankee which would get him upset.