Painter Weidenbach's father Johann Heinrich Weidenbach worked at the Naumburg an der Saale town church of St Wenzel where he was the verger and the teacher at the girls’ school . Johann Heinrich was born in Dec/Jan 1741/42 and died in Naumburg on the 18th March 1792, at the age of 50¼ . It appears that he was not born in Naumburg because he was granted Naumburg citizenship on 16/6/1772.

Naumburg town records also indicate that a certain Johann Friedrich Weidenbach (roofer with master craftsman's diploma) obtained Naumburg citizenship on 14/5/1739. Perhaps he was the father of Johann Heinrich?

Johann Heinrich married Sophia Christiane Dorothea (née ??) and had two sons - Friedrich August Weidenbach ("Painter Weidenbach") and the elder son Heinrich Traugott Weidenbach, who married Dorothea Christaine Nagel and had five children, three of which ( August Friedrich Weidenbach, Gustav Adolf Weidenbach and Sophia Weidenbach ) survived and migrated to South Australia.

Friedrich August Weidenbach ("Painter Weidenbach") was born in Naumburg on the 4th of April 1790. Friedrich August's father died when Friedrich was in his early childhood. Friedrich went away soon after with his mother to Dresden where he devoted himself to the art of painting. He practised his art afterwards in different cities in Saxony.

He married Christiane Friederike Vollmer (or Woelnerin) who was born on 5/12/1795 in Hohenstein via Chemnitz. Their first son, August, was born at Chemnitz in 1813 and the second son, Moritz, near Dresden in 1816. The remaining six sons were born after their parents return to Naumburg. (In 1815, Naumburg passed from Saxon to Prussian government when Upper Saxony was ceded to Prussia.)

In the year 1817 Friedrich returned to his father city with his wife and two sons. In Easter 1842, he was appointed as art drawing master at the Domgymnasium (High School) attached to the impressive Dom St. Peter und St. Paul (Cathedral of Saint Peter and Saint Paul) in Naumburg.


Please click on an image below to enlarge it.
Naumburg Domplatz Domplatz aerial thumb Domkirchnerhaus

Naumburg Domplatz & Dom

juergenhennekunstkritik Leipzig, October 2011 

The Naumburg Cathedral of St Peter and St Paul is one of the finest Gothic structures in Germany.

Naumburg Cathedral and Domplatz, July 2011

Friedrich August was Drawing Master at the Domschule ( G ) , on the Domplatz adjacent to the cathedral.

Naumburg Domkirchnerhaus

Wallace, May 2006

 For the last ten years of his life he lived in the Verger's house ( K ) , on the Domplatz opposite the cathedral.


Friedrich appears to have launched each of his sons into a promising career. The eldest, Gustav, went to Halle University. Later he worked as a schoolteacher in Dresden.

Four of his sons inherited Friedrich's artistic talents and interests. He sent his third son Ernst to Dresden Art Academy. His fifth son Max was sent to Berlin to learn the art of drawing accurately scaled copies of Egyptian hieroglyphics. Both Ernst and Max worked as draughtsmen and artists for the Lepsius expedition to Egypt and the Sudan. The sixth son, Karl, and the eighth son, Louis, also became artists. Karl became a North American landscape painter. Louis specialised in portraits and was a pioneer photographer. In 1860, Louis took over as art master at the Domgymnasium when his father died. He later migrated to Baltimore U.S.A., where he practised as an artist and art teacher.

Friedrich apprenticed two sons as landscape gardeners: the second eldest, Moritz, started at the Schlossgarten at Merseberg and the seventh, Julius, began at Zwickau near where Moritz had become curator of the Planitz Schlossgarten. Heinrich, the fourth son, worked as a lithographer.

Between 1846 and 1849, four of his sons migrated to South Australia, probably because of the perceived opportunities to advance economically (land was readily available) and to be free from the political and social conflict which had intensified just before the 1848 revolutions. Later, in the early 1850s Karl migrated the Baltimore, USA, leaving only:  Ernst, the artist/"egyptologist", who was working at the museum in Berlin until 1881;  the youngest son, the artist Louis, who remained in Naumburg until 1866; and Heinrich, who was working in Bremen as a lithographer until 1856.

Friedrich died on the 22nd of November 1860 at the age of 70 years and seven months, after a short hospitalisation . His wife died three years later, on 23/9/1863, aged 68 years.

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This information has been compiled from the documents and references which can be seen by following this link.

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