The general knowledge in my family has always been that our Drohman ancestors came to America from the area along the border between southern Germany and northern Switzerland. I remember as a kid always saying that our people were German. However, in my head, this was all about something that had happened in the very distant past and didn’t have much impact on my life.
However, in the late ’90s, well after the time when I lived in Paris and discovered my love for French cuisine, I found out, via an uncle who is nuts for genealogy, that I have Drohman relations who are French! The story my uncle uncovered involved two brothers who left southern Germany in the last part of the 19th century, with the intention of starting a new life in America. As fate and circumstance would have it, one brother stopped in Alsace near the town of Mulhouse, and the other continued on to the United States. They respectively founded the French and American branches of the Drohman family.
Today, most of the French Drohmanns (note the extra “n”) still live in Alsace, although I know of at least one, Marion Poirez (born Drohmann) who lives in Paris. Marion and her husband, mother and father recently made a trip to visit the West Coast of the United States, starting in Seattle. During their visit, I had the pleasure of introducing them to the Pike Place Market and of welcoming them for dinner at Le Pichet. And we hope to visit Marion and her husband when we are in Paris this month.
I seems that those people from the very distant past do have an impact on my life after all.