About space exploration and the stars

deutscher Text

Published: 1. August 2018, updated: 12. Februar 2022

Some time ago I read in the magazines of the „Initiative for Bornich“, a local alliance in my home village, where are always very interesting contributions from a family research perspective.

In the most recent issue no. 1 of October 2010, I came across an article by Marita Zorbach on the research of Paul Debus from Bornich regarding his relationship with Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus (*Nov. 29, 1908 in Frankfurt, +Oct. 10, 1983 in Cocoa Beach, FL, USA), the first and longtime director of the Kennedy Space Center.

Kurt H. Debus
Kurt H. Debus
By NASA [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Under his leadership succeeded following missions:

Paul Debus found out that ancestors of Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus came from Bornich and he is related to him.

Since I knew from my parents that there is also a relationship between Paul Debus and us (in fact, there are even at least four different kinship connections, three about my mother and one about my father), I suspected that I could be related with Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus too.

And in fact, I even found two relationships between us. But since both run on Wilhelm Bauer, my maternal grandfather, my sister and I are the first „connections between the rocket scientist and the stars“.

In detail, the connections are as follows:

Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus and Jens-Peter Stern are 4th cousins 3. degree. Their common ancestor is Johann Philipp Debus.


While the line „Stern| Bauer | Laubach | Debus“ (in the table on the left) leads to the first marriage of Johann Philipp Debus on 25 Nov 1751 with Elisabetha Margaretha Römer, the „pure Debus line“ (in the table on the right) is linked with the second marriage of Johann Philipp Debus, which was closed on 12 March 1772 with Maria Juliana Becker.


The second relationship goes back to 6 Jun 1875. On this day married in Bornich Marie Elisabethe Laubach, an ancestor of the above first relationship and the ancestor of the second relationship described below, Georg Caspar Laubach.

The fact that I have found 20 kindred relationships between the two is not uncommon „at the village“ at this time. The closest relationship is as follows:

Georg Caspar Laubach and Marie Elisabethe Laubach are 2nd cousins 1. degree. Their common ancestors are Johann Wilhelm Schupp and Maria Catharina Becker.


But back to Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus and the second relationship with me. This comes together with Johann Emmerich Debus (* 1694).


Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus and Jens-Peter Stern are 6th cousin 3. degree. Their common ancestors are Johann Emmerich Debus and NN NN.


Below are the key data until the birth of Dr. Ing. Kurt Heinrich Debus in a short summary.


The story begins before 1670 in Bornich


On the life and work of Dr. Kurt Heinrich Debus – from his education, through the period of National Socialism in Germay, Operation Paperclip to the Kennedy Space Center – as well as to his family, I refer to the literature that is sufficiently available on the Internet.

Here I recommend the two articles in the Englisch and German Wikipedia and in particular the extensive essay „Dr. Kurt H. Debus: Launching a Vision“ by Carey M. McCleskey and David L. Christensen.

Source documents:

Author (s)TitlePublisher / OfferYearISBNRemarks
Brückner, ReinerOrtsfamilienbuch der evangelischen Kirchengemeinde Bornich im Dekanat St. Goarshausen der Jahre 1708 – 1900 - sowie Erklärungen zu den Bildern der Bornicher KircheBornich | DER BUCHLADEN, Schulstr. 1, 56348 Bornich2009--
McCleskey, Carey M. | Christensen, David L.Dr. Kurt H. Debus: Launching a VisionInternational Astronautical Federation (IAF), Paris2001--
Zorbach, MaritaDebus-Krater „hinter“ dem Mond? | Verbindung nach Bornich mit Besitzrechten?Vierteljahresschrift:
„Initiative für Bornich
– Magazin

56348 Bornich
Issue No. 1, October 2010, pages 6 and 7--
Wikipedia authors, see respective version historyWikipedia, Die freie EnzyklopädieWikimedia Foundation Inc.
149 New Montgomery Street Floor 6
San Francisco, CA 94105
--The used articles are linked.
-Das Geschichtliche Orts-VerzeichnisCompGen
Verein für Computergenealogie e. V.
c/o Horst Reinhardt
Piccoloministraße 397a
51067 Köln
--The used articles are linked.

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