780 - 967 (187 years) Submit Photo / Document
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||SAXONY, Billung |
||Saxony, Prussia, Germany
||Reviewed on FS |
||26 Mar 967
||Saxony, Prussia, Germany
||Joseph Smith Sr and Lucy Mack Smith
||19 Aug 2021 |
||SAXONY, Aeda, b. 784, Saxony, Prussia, Germany d. DECEASED |
|+||1. SAXONY, Dutchess Oda, b. 830, Saxony, Prussia, Germany d. 913, Saxony, Prussia, Germany (Age 83 years)|
|+||2. BILLUND, Duke Herman, b. 894, Lüneburg, Hanover, Prussia, Germany d. 27 Mar 973, Saxony, Prussia, Germany (Age 79 years)|
||24 Jan 2022 |
||Group Sheet | Family Chart
- Dresden, Sachsen (Saxony) Saxony (German: Sachsen) is one of the traditional German states and has a long history. A fertile upland, Saxony lies at the very heart of the European continent. It long comprised the territory located between Berlin and the Erzgebirge mountains. Saxony's main river, the Elbe, is eastern Europe's most direct trade route to the Atlantic Ocean. A significant part of inhabitants of Saxony have always been the Slavonic Lusatians (or Wends) whose language is akin to Polish and Czech. During the Middle Ages, rich deposits of silver, tin, copper, iron, and semi- precious gems were discovered in Saxony's mountainous south; with these mineral resources, Saxony developed into an early center of craftsmanship and light industry. The Saxon monarchs took great pride in their title of "elector," as only seven Germanic rulers held the privilege of electing the Holy Roman Emperor. Dresden for many years was the historic German capital of Saxony, but today is the capital of Dresden District. In 1815 about half of the Saxon territory was annexed by Prussia. Those regions which now belong to Poland, were incorporated into the Prussian provinces of Brandenburg and Silesia . Only a small portion of the district of Zittau, east of the Neisse River, still belonged to Saxony. After 1945 the Neisse River became the boundary between Poland and Germany and this small area also became part of Poland. The remainder constitutes the current State of Saxony in the Federal Republic of Germany. Early History First traces of settlements in the area of the Elbe valley go back to the neolithic period. In the 6th century BCE Germanic settlers reached the Elbe lowlands and settled temporarily. However, the majority of them left this area one millennium later and so Slavonic tribes took possession of this land peacefully. After 900 CE the first German settlers came to the area of Dresden, founding the castle of Meissen in order to underline their claim of ownership. The rule of the noble family of Wettin, who dominated Saxony's history for the next few centuries, began with Duke Conrad of Wettin in 1123. Later, Slavs came to the area. The marking of some quarters of Dresden like Zschertnitz or Gompitz go back to Slavonic roots. In fact the Slavonic settlement of Drezdany (Dredzane, meaning forest people), situated at the place of the present Frauenkirche, gave Dresden its name. In its first historical notation in 1206, Dresden is mentioned as a fording point on the Elbe. A decade later, in 1216, Dresden was first described as city and this is now considered to be the founding date. As early as 1287, a bridge crossed the river at Dresden. The plague of 1349 is also reported in the chronicle. After the Leipzig separation, Dresden became the residential city of the principality of Saxony, under Prince Albert. The upswing, which was connected with this, allowed for Dresden's expansion. This baroque city spread along the Elbe Valley , to the north of which are the Lossnitz ridges, the woods of the Dresdener Heide and the steep slopes of the Lausitz plateau, while to the south are the foothills of the Erzgebirge. On the left bank of the River Elbe is the old part and the right side is the newer part of the city. Nestled in a valley, it seems to lie at the crossroads of a warring Europe throughout history. Dresden was subjected to a destiny of destruction, and rebuilding, due to the ever changing occupations brought on by war. Dresden, however, came to prominence relatively late in Saxon history -- not until 1485 did the electors (the Dukes of Saxony) make this city their principal residence. In 1539, the reformation was officially introduced to Saxony. Over the centuries Saxony gradually came to be considered a Protestant principality. In the 16th century, the city walls were reinforced in the face of growing danger from Turk invasion. Growth in the 17th and 18th Centuries Dresden developed rapidly in the 17th and 18th century under Elector Saxony Frederick Augustus I and II and King Augustus III of Poland. The city has long been noted for its architecture and great art treasures. For many, the period in which the city flourished began with the baroque age, when Dresden became one of the most glamorous royal capitals in Europe. Dresden's most glorious era, both in art collecting and in architectural innovation, occurred from 1697 to 1763, when two electors of Saxony also served as kings of Poland, controlling one of Europe's largest empires. The public face of the city was heavily influenced by the erection of an array of buildings by acclaimed architects and the establishment of the Großer Garten. This époque was responsible for some of Dresden's undeniably beautiful buildings such as the Zwinger, Hofkirche or the Taschenbergpalais. Saxony started to gain importance politically and a refined reputation throughout Europe. Prince George III, declared war on Polish King Jan Sobieski (ruled 1674-1696), and beat the Turks at Vienna in 1683, which marked the end of the Muslim invasion in Europe. Moreover, his grandson as Elector of Saxony was Friedrich August I (better known as August the Strong) who became a well-loved historical personality even though much of his fame was based on his dissolute lifestyle, reputation with women and alleged strength. After August the Strong came to power and in order to secure the crown of Poland, he changed his creed from Protestant to Roman Catholic, and his family soon followed suit. August succeeded and became August II, King of Poland, in 1697. The union of Saxony and Poland lasted until 1763, but for a short interruption, and this period is nowadays called the Augustian Age. In this époque, a great a dynamic development took place, especially in the fields of economy and culture. For example, the alchemist Johann Freidrich Böttcher invented European-style porcelain in 1709; the first European porcelain enterprise was founded only one year later, in 1710. Meißen porcelain is today a brand of international fame. In the art world, the Green Cave, the world famous jewelry collection was founded. It is the oldest specialist museum in the world. During the Seven Years War, Dresden was attacked by Prussian cannons and suffered heavy damage. The prince and his ministers fled to Poland. The treaty of Dresden in 1745 marked the end of the war of Austrian succession and the Prussian occupation of the city. Finally, in 1763 August the Strong died. His estate: baroque Dresden, with its French and Italian influences, proved one of Europe's leading and most beautiful residential cities. Dresden was also dubbed the "Florence of the Elbe" at this time. Many buildings of Dresden are still fine examples of 17th and 18th century baroque and rococo styles. A city of culture and music, it was home to many of the great paintings of the Italian, Dutch, and Flemish schools. Many can still be viewed in the famous Semper Gallery. Both Weber and Wagner conducted here, where the operas by Richard Straus, Franz Liszt and others were first performed. Although the city suffered heavily from the bombardment of February 13, 1945, the art treasures, having been safely concealed, survived to re-establish the importance of Dresden as a cultural center. While the Semper Opera House was destroyed in World War II by bombing it is now fully restored and reopened in 1985. Church and Royal Castle, Altstadt, Dresden, Saxony, Germany The city also has a long tradition of learning, particularly in the scientific and technical fields, and housed a library containing 3,000 manuscripts and 20,000 maps. The Zwinger Museum is known for its collection of fine porcelain, minerals and gems. The latter years of eighteenth century Europe was marked by a lack in general stability. The middle class had become numerous and wealthy, and aspired to political power. The peasants, many of whom owned land, had attained an education and acquired an improved standard of living, wanted to discard the last traces of feudalism. They now wanted the full rights of landowners and freedom to increase their holdings. The "Industrial Revolution" added to the social upheaval. Between 1715 - 1800, the European population doubled, causing a greater demand for food and consumer goods. A general escalation in prices gave rise to a feeling of economic prosperity. However, by 1770, this trend slackened, and economic crises, provoking alarm and even revolt, became frequent. The hereditary elector of Saxony at this time, Frederick Augustus I, born in Dresden on Dec. 23, 1750, succeeded to the electorate in 1763 and was declared of legal age to rule in 1768. He sided with Prussia against Austria in the War of the Bavarian Succession which ended in 1779, for which he was compensated with both land and cash. Following the French Revolution of 1789, ideas of liberty, equality, and fraternity became popular among the educated classes, and soon after, French emigrants arrived in Northern Germany, permitted to enlist and arm volunteers to attack France. Though Frederick Augustus I joined Prussia's league of German princes, the "Furstenbund," in 1785, he took no part in the Austro-Prussian quarrel of 1790, and refused to join the Austro-Prussian league when France declared war on April 20, 1792. However, when war broke out, he remained loyal to the league and so entered the hostilities (the French Revolution, 1789 - 1899, and the Napoleonic Wars) and a era of ever changing alliances which was to dominate Europe until 1814. By 1797 all of Germany had come under French rule, and was divided into 112 states. In 1806, Saxony joined Prussia in an unsuccessful war against Napoleonic France. After the Peace of Posen (December 11, 1806), Frederick Augustus I (also called August III) retained rule of Saxony and gained membership in the Royal Confederation of the Rhine. So Saxony became a Kingdom through an act of mercy by Napoleon. Though not occupied by the French, as was Northern Germany, Saxony remained bound to Napoleon by its membership in the Royal Confederation of the Rhine, and would become one of Napoleon's most loyal allies. With the demise of the Holy Roman Empire on August 6, 1806, complete autonomy of the individual states that had come to exist within its boundaries was legally recognized. Germany became a geographical entity without any political or national unity. In 1812, Napoleon led a disastrous campaign against Russia, and when, upon his return reached Dresden, Frederick Augustus I received him well. By 1813, it was questionable whether or not Russia would bring war to Germany. In March of 1813, Northern Germany joined Prussia in war against France and headed for the Saxony region. May 3, 1813, the Russians retreated on Dresden. Coming to the aid of his allies, on May 8, 1813, Napoleon entered Dresden and made the town a center of military operations. On August 11, 1813, Emperor Frances II of Austria also declared war on France. And, after considerable discussion, the allies (Prussia, Russia, and Austria) decided that the Bohemian army, under Schwarzenberg, consisting of 127,000 Austrians together with 82,000 Russians and half as many Prussians, would advance on Dresden up the western bank of the Elbe. Napoleon made the city his base where on August 26 and 27 of 1813, Napoleon won his last great victory. In the Battle of Dresden , Napoleon successfully lead 70,000 men against an army more than twice its size composed of Austrian, Russian and Prussian forces. Napoleon's subsequent defeat at Leipzig in October 1813, during which much of the Saxon Army went over to the enemies and Frederick Augustus I was taken prisoner, marked the end of Saxony's luck. Russia occupied Saxony and ruled Dresden until September of 1814, when the task was transferred to Prussia, which would not leave for another year following the Congress of Vienna in 1815. Thirty-nine states now remained in Germany, thirty-five of which were monarchies. In June of 1815, these states formed a non-binding union, the German Federation, in which all states retained full autonomy. Though restored as king in May of 1815, Frederick Augustus I had to give up two-fifths of Saxony due to his loyalty to Napoleon. The remainder of his life, from 1815 - 1827, was spent in the rehabilitation of what was left of Saxony. The dismantling of the medieval fortifications of Dresden, begun by the French in 1810, was completed by 1830, and gardens and promenades were made. A call for German unity came from the universities from 1815 - 1819. Severe economic difficulties and strict adherence to the conservative policy of the Restoration as laid down for Germany by Austria in 1819, accompanied the political inactivities of the 1820's. The Carlsbad decrees of 1819 called for uniform press censorship of all periodical publications, removal of university teachers suspected of subversive doctrines, suppression of groups agitating for German unity, and establishing a central commission to investigate the supposed revolutionary movement. This caused much frustration among German intellectuals as it often repressed liberty of thought. Impact of Industrialization The dark shadows of political storms to come, along with the social unrest arising from the beginning of industrialization, were keenly felt. In the age of industrialization, Saxony took a leading position within Germany. A sense of disillusionment with man's capacity to achieve noble ends, and a pessimistic appraisal of man's role in the universe dominated imaginative literature and thoroughly changed it's mood, which once reflected a solidly constructive attitude. It had become only too evident that earlier political and cultural ideals were not being realized. A wave of revolution swept over Germany in 1830, calling for political and economic revolution. Riots in Dresden and Leipzig (September 1830) forced King Antony to accept Frederick Augustus, son of his Brother Maximilian, as Co -ruler, who in part, was responsible for the constitution of 1831 establishing a legislative assembly composed of two branches. While this attempt to compromise between conservative and liberal aspirations of the middle classes satisfied neither, a responsible ministry took the place of the Privy Cabinet and the peasant serfs were emancipated. Further measures of repression were issued in June of 1832 (the Six Articles), and in 1835 a ban was imposed upon writers dedicated to "Young Germany" and its political and social problems. Severe censorship and authoritarian government influenced these writers, who preached individualism. For those who dared to criticize the established political and social order, exile was often the fate. Many were forced to flee. On Antony's death in 1836, Frederick Augustus II became king. Political discontent was aggravated by Liberal demands for the publicity of judicial proceedings and for a free press. With the dismissal of seven professors in 1837 by the new King of Hanover, the movement for national unity and constitutional government continued to gather strength. With rumors of a possible French attach on Germany in 1841, the opportunity for demonstrating this feeling for nation unity presented itself. The artisans and apprentices wanted to rid the last of medieval restrictions on their professional freedom. The peasants wanted to be freed from their remaining feudal obligations. The intellectual classes -- lawyers, professors, students -- wanted freedom of speech, trial by jury and a representative system of government as well as the satisfaction of their desires for a German national state. Non-German nationalities in the empire wanted freedom and constitutional government. Germany was getting ever closer to revolt. The year of revolution came in 1848, reaching the city with many terrible consequences. Initially, Frederick Augustus II had favored the plan for German unity put forward at Frankfurt in 1848, though refusing to acknowledge the democratic constitution of the Frankfurt assembly. This attitude led to the May insurrection in Dresden in 1849, when bloody battles were fought and the skirmishes ended with a monarchist victory. The famous composer Richard Wagner took part in these fights. He escaped from the city after the defeat of the rebels. The last risings of liberal thought were suppressed with the aid of Prussian troops in Baden and Saxony in May and June of 1849. The later part of this period also marked the beginning of the influx of Germans to America, writes K. C. Kuenzel . During the 1850s the position of Prussia was strengthened as the leading power in Germany. The economy of Saxony continued to grow as this was the period of industrial take-off. Large deposits of raw materials in the Saar, Ruhr and Silesia began to be fully exploited. Impact of the Railroad The role of the railway was crucial in this maximization of these resources. In 1835, the Dresden-born professor Johann Andreas Schubert constructed the first German locomotive. That year the inaugural German railway line was built between Nürnberg and Fürth; in 1839 another between Leipzig and Dresden. Within fifteen years' time, Dresden was linked to all major German and most European cities by railway. This allowed production and distribution of coal and lignite to be expanded and bulk materials moved from their mines to the centers of steel production. Because the iron ore deposits available in Germany were of low quality, large quantities were imported from France, Luxembourg and Sweden. A comprehensive rail network was essential for the iron ore to be moved to the steel making plants. The basic industries of iron-making, metal fabrication and textiles grew enormously. The Leipzig - Dresden line needed new equipment, its rolling stock was improved and economic progress was rapid. The infrastructure of Saxony was characterized by excellence, thanks to the new railroad and steamships. Saxony was the only area outside Prussia to experience such economic growth, and the railway line from Leipzig to Dresden had a leading role in this development. According to John Lace , a network of 6,000 kilometers of rail track was operational in Germany by 1850 and it continued to expand at a rapid rate. Industrial production doubled during the fifties and the production of iron and coal tripled; at the heart of this growth was the railway. The railway in Saxony was now repaying its shareholders handsomely as they saw their investments increase year by year. Trade on the Leipzig - Dresden railway grew dramatically and although both the political and economic balance was swinging Prussia's way, Saxony prospered. Leipzig and Dresden were growing rapidly. Population was steadily growing as the workers on the land began to 'drift' to the cities. Leipzig's population grew from 30,000 in 1800 to 63,000 in 1850, while Dresden expanded from 60,000 to 97,000 in the same period. The Leipzig - Dresden railway played a key role in this growth, as industry and commerce grew and factories established themselves at sites along the railway. German population grew at a smaller rate for the same period, illustrating the power of the railway in the regions where it was built, and naturally the Leipzig - Dresden line in its second decade of life was the key stone to Saxony's growing prosperity. The political supremacy of Prussia was further enhanced when the German Custom Union was renewed in 1853 without Austria having any part in it. Saxony knew that if it was to continue its economic development its links had to be maintained with its northerly neighbor rather than its southerly one. Tariffs for goods transported into Austria were much higher than those going north to Prussia. The railway from Leipzig to Dresden was moving large quantities of goods north and the shareholders of the company were reaping high rewards for their early faith in its building in the 1830s. Dresden also became leader in photographic manufacture. The first factory to make high gloss albumen photo paper appeared in 1854 in Germany, and Dresden later became the world center for its production . Although there were factories in other countries including the USA, most photographers for many decades preferred the German product. In the summer of 1865, a writer in one of Saxony's local newspapers extolled the kingdom's special virtues in euphoric tones. "Large states are not as lucky as little ones," wrote this contributor to the Budissiner Nachrichten. "We have a constitutional life, which Austria and Prussia do not have yet. Harmony reigns between king and people. Everywhere in the land we have prosperity, low taxes, and good finances. Higher . . . cultural pursuits are not neglected by us, nor are the interests of our larger Fatherland [Gesamtvaterland]. All fantasies entertained by the large states cannot disturb our well-being, for there is room enough in the smallest hut for a satisfied heart." This is taken from the very interesting scholarly research study by James Retallack called "'Why Can't a Saxon Be More Like a Prussian?' Regional Identities and the Birth of Modern Political Culture in Germany, 1866-67." Retallack goes on to point out: "A year later, and just a few weeks after the Saxons shared Austria's defeat by Prussia at the Battle of Königgrätz, the liberal historian and publicist Heinrich von Treitschke offered a very different picture. A native of Saxony but already a fanatic advocate of Prussian hegemony in Germany, Treitschke characterized his homeland not as a lucky little state but as a despotic one: 'The tyranny of the petty German prince is more genial and therefore more pernicious for our sleepy people; it creeps in softly and knows how to smother all character without a sound. The Saxon court will return, with its heart full of hatred and revenge; it will politely accommodate itself to the current situation and quietly begin to spin its fine web toward the Hofburg in Vienna . . . Then the gendarmes will pull out the lists of those who are friendly to Prussia . . . ; the most important offices will fall into the hands of those subjects . . . [loyal to] King Johann . . . ; [and] the [Saxon] military's esprit de corps will give rise to . . . particularistic traditionalism and spitefulness. Above all, a restoration promises the moral ruin of the people through the spirit of lies and hypocritical loyalty.' "The Philistine spirit in Dresden, Treitschke concluded, provided 'the most shining proof for the numbing effect of parochialism [Kleinstaaterei]. Bless the day when a fresh breath of political wind may finally sweep into this stifling atmosphere.' "Before 1866 was over, Saxon politics had been wrenched out of the complacency reflected in the Budissiner Nachrichten. Saxony's peace treaty with Prussia forced it to enter the new North German Confederation, thereby significantly reducing its sovereignty in military, commercial, and diplomatic affairs." Ironically Prussia's successful war in the late 1860s against Austria and its Saxon ally helped propel the Kingdom of Saxony to become Prussia's unrivaled junior partner in the emerging Germany. With the foundation of the German Empire, Saxony lost its political independence. Yet Dresden remained a city of central importance in Germany. At the turn of the 19th century, Dresden blossomed into a metropolis with 517,000 inhabitants in 1905. During the World War I, Dresden escaped damage. The November Revolution of 1918 led to the end of the monarchy, and the last Saxon King, Friedrich, was forced to abdicate. Dresden became the capital of the federal state of Saxony in the interim between the wars. By 1930, 632,710 people lived in Dresden. In contrast to other German cities during World War II, Dresden did not see Allied bombs until 1945. This created the impression amongst citizens that Dresden would escape air raids due to its international reputation. On the eve of the destruction, many additional refugees from the eastern parts of Germany had flooded into the city. Neither war-important industry nor air defense was based in Dresden. On the 13th of February, at 10:13 p.m., the first bombs were dropped on the Saxon capital. In different waves of attack, British and American bombers dropped more than 3,000 tons of explosives on Dresden in a space of fourteen hours. The result was disastrous. It is estimated that approximately 35,000 souls were killed in the firestorm. Buildings of great historical and cultural value were lost. Florence of the Elbe, one of the most beautiful cities in Germany, was destroyed in just one night. Some of the historical sights were reconstructed during the Soviet-dominated East German regime, but the communist rulers neglected much of the city. With the political change in 1989 and the ensuing German reunification, Dresden again entered a new era. Conservation of old buildings was given priority. As a result, Dresden again has regained much of its glamour as the capital of the re-established federal state of Saxony. Select Chronology* 1206 Dresden first mentioned as a fording point on the Elbe River 1423 Ruler of Saxony made elector of the Holy Roman Empire 1485 Elector of Saxony chose Dresden as main residence 1517 Martin Luther's "95 Theses on the Misuses of Indulgences" purportedly posted on the doors of the Wittenberg Castle Church 1520 Luther publishes Address to the Christian Nobility of the German Nation 1522 Luther's German translation of New Testament published 1548 Court Orchestra founded, forerunner of Saxon State Orchestra 1556 Royal Saxon Library founded by Prince Elector Augustus (1553- 1586) as his personal library 1694-1733 Reign of Augustus I, the Strong, who also became King of Poland in 1697 1709-1732 Zwinger "arena," an art gallery and festival courtyard built beside the palace by architect Pöppelmann 1727 Royal Library moves into two wings of Zwinger Palace and is made accessible to the public 1733-1763 Reign of Augustus II 1736 Johann von Besser's collection acquired by the Royal Library 1755 Librarian Winckelmann published Imitation of the Painting and Sculpture of the Greeks 1756-1763 Seven Years War 1763-1806 Reign of Augustus III 1764 Count von Bünau's library purchased 1768 Count von Brühl's library purchased 1798 "Romantic School" of literature created in Dresden, including the Schlegels, Novalis, and Schelling 1806 Holy Roman Empire dissolved during Napoleonic wars, and the elector became King of Saxony; library became Royal Public Library 1807 Journal Phoebus, founded and published in Dresden, was a leading periodical of the "Romantic" Movement 1884-1887 Albertinum built to house the Sculpture Collection 1918 Last King of Saxony abdicated. 1919 With the Weimar Republic, Library officially becomes the Saxon State Library * Based on the chronology in The Splendor of Dresden exhibition guidebook, U.S. National Gallery of Art, 1978. GIVEN NAMES: Also shown as Billing GIVEN NAMES: Also shown as Billing BIRTH: Also shown as Born , Old Saxony, Germany.
- [S1] The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Ancestral File (TM), (July 1996 (c), data as of 2 January 1996).