A newly revealed letter from president-elect Donald Trump’s grandfather shows he appealed to authorities in southern Germany not to expel him for avoiding military service.
The letter, penned by Friedrich Trump in 1905 and published for the first time this week in the German magazine Bild, was addressed to Prince Regent Luitpold of Bavaria asking to stay in Germany.
The elder Trump left the country at the age 16 to seek his fortune in the United States. He did well in the western U.S., making money running taverns and brothels during a gold rush in Canada’s Yukon territory, according to the Washington Post.
According to one source, Friedrich Trump “mined the miners."
One establishment, the Arctic, apparently had quite a reputation. “For single men, the Arctic has the best restaurant,” wrote a journalist at the Yukon Sun newspaper. “But I would not advise respectable women to go there to sleep as they are liable to hear that which would be repugnant to their feelings and uttered, too, by the depraved of their own sex.”
However, by leaving Germany, Trump violated the law requiring mandatory military service.
This became a problem with he returned to Germany in the early 1900s.
During one of his trips, he met his future wife, but when she got homesick and wanted to return to Germany, his legal troubles took center stage despite his pleas.
“The American citizen and pensioner Friedrich Trump, currently residing in Kallstadt, is hereby informed that he is to depart the state of Bavaria, or face deportation,” authorities said in a document dated February 1905, according to Deutsche Welle.
Trump’s letter to the prince regent was not persuasive in rescinding his expulsion.