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Syrmia Biographies

ALT, Jakob 1789 - 1872

Syrmien Peterwardein und Neusatz;
father of Rudolf von Alt.  Jakob the Elder, (1789, Germany - 1872 Vienna), painter and lithograph; Father of Franz alto and Rudolf of alto studied at the Viennese academy with F. A. Brand and M. von Molitor; created lithographic series works over the Austrian alps and the Danube. Extensive Herbarium (today in the Netherland Federal State Museum).

ALT, Rudolf 1812-1905

von BÖHM-ERMOLLI, Eduard Freiherr

Austrian Commander - Böhm-Ermolli was dispatched first to the Vojvodina to comply with General Conrad's planned invasion of Serbia according to "Plan B."  The IX. Corps actually invaded Serbia from Syrmia in the First Invasion beginning on August 11, 1914  []


KNIESEL, Wilfred

Born 1922 in Beschka, Syrmien. He studied in Karlowitz, Neu Werbass and Esseg. He became soldier and saw action near Leningrad Russia (Petersburg). After the war he continued his study at the University of Frankfurt, Germany, He thought chemistry and economy in Darmstadt. His contributed to the study of Donauschwaben genealogy and family history of the Donauschwaben and the Palatinate from where many of our ancestors originate.

KRAUSS, Alfred (Austrian Commander)

Austrian Commander Krauss arrived in time to organize the defense of Syrmia, and on 10 September, the independent 104. Landstürm brigade marched past Jarak in western Syrmia, made a defensive line along the Roman Canal, and stopped the advance of Serbia’s Sumadija Division.

The next morning, FZM Oskar Potiorek launched a full-scale invasion of Serbia from Bosnia-Herzegovina, and General Bojovic was ordered to withdraw from Syrmia.  Krauss had scraped together enough loose LandstŸrm units from both the long-gone IX. Corps and also from nearby VIII. Corps to form the so-called Combined Corps under the 5. Army, which reoccupied Syrmia.



Born 1920 in India, Syrmia. He visited the high schools in Semlin and Karlowitz and later graduated from the University of Belgrade. After the war he continued his study on the University of Graz in Austria. From here he moved to Stuttgart where he became active in many the research of several Donauschwaben Heimatbücher (Towns books).


Renown Danube Swabian Music Historian, Composer and Author from Banat,
but wrote about musicians from "all" regions.


ROMETSCH, Pastor Matthias

The Flame Devours Us 
From the Diary of Pastor Matthias Rometsch
Chronik Neu-Pasua 1790-1945


Contributed by Gerhard Banzhaf, translated by Henry Fischer & edited by Rose Vetter

SOMMERFIELD, OSKAR, Prof. 1885-1983

Academic Painter from the town of India (Indjija)


THURO, Andreas, Sr. Poet from Syrmia

Windmill Grinds
By Andreas Thuro, Sr.
Translated by Brad Schwebler

Sun shines,
Winds blow,
Mill grinds,
Winds go,
Swing wide,
Rustle, wave far,
Lured by the many winds,
Spellbinding in the roundabout play,
Serving in the yoke, they work, prevail.
Long hours, busily turn,
Grinding delay,
Hesitate – rear up
When it became red far in the evening,
Hurry away the wind trotting…
Leave the mill standing, alone…
It’s free, restrained,
And listen in the silent twilight
And dream…

Round tower
Powerful wings
Stand in the storm
On the hill,
Dark night
Darkness has power:
Roaring up from the valley and gorge,
Storm the night with fantastic force;
Wrestling wings, groaning,
Storm-tossed owls hoot;
Break – bend,
Drag – rock;
Finally whirl away the round dance –
Timidly creeps near the silence…
In the bosom of the night the storm varies.
The morning rewards
The mill hums her ancient song-
For bread…

Song of the Colonists
By Andreas Thuro, Sr.
Translated by Brad Schwebler

At the plow I learned to go,
The need taught me to stand
Through the duty I came in walking…
with the view in the distance.

The day brings me only plagues,
the night secretly gnawing
and the hunger at the threshold,
and the thirst my companion… 

The seed grows so poorly for me,
the mower throws so terribly
and the disaster in the clouds
loaded with weeds.

The song goes in rounds,
the torment crowns me on the hour,
there the fate is in doses-
and the way leads to the grave.



(Austria) Born 1942 in Ruma, Syrmia.
Performances as chamber musician and world wide very sought after as accompanist for vocalists. Professor for art classes and tutor for "Lied" interpretation at the University of Music and Dramatic Arts, Graz, Austria. Presentation of the opera of Josef Matthias Hauer and Hans Florey. Since 2001: NOMOS. Gerhard Zeller-Institute for integrated harmony structures.

Gerhard Zeller


Additions to index and biographies were made by Jody McKim

Antiquariat Dipl.-Ing. Ralf Einhorn

Syrmia Biographies Index published at, 13 Feb 2010; update 10 Apr 2018 Publisher: Jody McKim. ©2003 Donauschwaben Villages Helping Hands, a Non-profit Corporation.
Webmaster: Jody McKim Pharr
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Last Updated: 23 Sep 2019